Me (Andrew) aged 18 years

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This is me aged 18 a young fresh faced engineering apprentice, cheeky and smiling the photograph having been taken at work by my apprentice trainer, why an earth he was taking my photograph God only knows?…………… I’m wondering is he still with us? A great guy.

Big sigh, I gaze at this photo and think to myself ‘where an earth have those thirty four years gone?’ I look at my cheeky grin and wonder ‘which of my young friends am I looking across at?’ I can remember for certain feeling embarrassed and someone close by was making some sort of funny comment………. happy days I’m so pleased I discovered this photo as for a full head of hair I’m saying nothing!

I know it’s been a while but for the first time in many months I’m happy, not so depressed and feeling positive about life because Britain appears to be reopening for business, yesterday my Boss phoned to say I may be unfurloughed and return to work Monday Morning! Fingers crossed and there’ll be a posting from there for sure.

After ten weeks of legally enforceable home detention, only a single days exercise to purchase groceries from the Supermarket, perhaps the occasional illegal visit to my mother’s for a natter and shared cup of tea, yes due to unexpected political reasons Britain is rushing out of lockdown. You may be aware last weekend our Government completely trashed it’s corona virus health policy just so as to save one political advisor, the name of Dominic Cummings might ring a bell, all I can add is this very obnoxious arrogant Machiavellian civil servant MUST be deemed so important as to justify offending the entire nation and we really are angry. Never again will Johnson be able to call on the public to make sacrifices and follow his clear health instructions, with one lie all trust and compliance disappeared in the space of hours, so now we know, rules are made for us little people to follow yet are there to be broken by the ruling elite, but isn’t that the way it’s always been?

Military Generals strategize and plan their war campaigns, but it’s only the Privates who die in the trenches, time to move on, open schools and universities, get people back to work earning money and to be honest I’m not tooo disappointed, it’s all a question of expectations and in hindsight I’d never have expected Cummings to obey the Law anyway.

Google ‘Dominic Cummings broke the rules’ if you’re intrigued, then again I wouldn’t bother.

I’ll be completely honest, as I always am on this WordPress, the first thought crossing my mind after attaching this picture of my 18 year old self was err sex! Unsurprisingly my first hypothetical question to female (or lol male) readers is, if you met this guy way back in the day 1983/4 might you have slept with this young virgin? Lol don’t answer but just so as you know this pleasant anxious guy had many issues about his looks also low self esteem to such a point he never got laid until many years later, 123 ahhhh. What plays on my mind lol today and after many recent liaisons with older women, I’m feeling disheartened because I remember opportunities presented themselves on certain evenings out say no more, and occasional readers to this Blog might already be aware (they won’t so humour me) just might remember I hadn’t yet masturbated myself to orgasm still at age 18! I know unbelievable or what!

All I can add is we lived in different more innocent times, I’m the product of a school with appalling sex education policies because incredible as it may sound to some, I hadn’t yet worked out how to use my penis properly more’s the point like most people I guess I can’t say I was overly concerned. Yes I’d purchased a second hand copy of ‘Penthouse magazine’ from my friend ‘Paul Suker’, money and pornographic contraband exchanging hands one sports afternoon in the school gymnasium changing rooms, but and this still makes me angry today ( 😀 ) just imagine the years of pleasurable me time I’d missed out on? Am I unique or were many other girls and boys of the 70s equally as naïve?

Anyways back in the good old days and yes they were, sex was rarely spoken about and MOST DEFINITLEY content WASN’T as readily accessible as now……….. just imagine my 1980s TV had 3 Channels and one of those was the BBC and if ‘auntie Beeb’ ever made the cardinal sin of showing a pair of naked female breasts on screen, questions WOULD have been asked in The Houses of Parliament, I kid you not, ‘The Viewers and Listeners Society’ that powerful 1970’s self appointed moral compass of the nation would have cited obscenity laws and executive BBC heads might have rolled.

I’m of an older generation you see (I’m old) I’d yet to use a computer for the first time, the internet and www were the stuff of science fiction films and possibly a day dream eureka moment sparking Steve Jobs imagination, as of this very moment I could google ‘naked woman’, press return and well you get the idea, yes I’d kissed girls but as yet never consensually groped let alone sex. The photo above brings back so many returning memories, break times of listening to fellow apprentice dating tales (or bs stories who knows), secondhand lurid accounts of fingering girlfriends the evening before and yes young men spare few details in close company, hmm… I guess that’s how unfortunate young ladies garner a ‘bad’ reputation, then again I have a sense girls are NO different when chatting amongst friends.

Anyways moving on!

I discovered the above photograph whilst clearing out my spare room, thirty plus years have passed by for heavens sake, and gazing at my youthful cheeky grinned self again I can remember this moment snapped in time as if yesterday, in hindsight I don’t lol think I was such a bad looking young man, perhaps if I’d been a little more cavalier on our apprentice nights out together, not been as shy also blessed with the self confidence and silver tongues possessed by several colleagues, looking back I know I passed on opportunities (judge me), you don’t need reminding thoughts of sex cross a young mans imagination once every 3 minutes. Back in the day at breaktimes, we fifteen used to sit on a wall outside the apprentice training college and watch attractive young women walk past, and whether you ‘men hating lesbian feminists’ agree with me or not, these young women adored the admiring looks and good natured attention. Happy days.

Err not the posting I’d intended to write, but not to worry sooon I might be back at work which makes me very happy 🙂 . 

A. Shepherdson 2020

Trouble with the Youth of today is………….

I’m guessing if you have children of your own you’ll possibly probably enjoy this one. 😀

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‘David’ by Michelangelo 1501-04, I think if the day ever comes when this magnificent marble statue is deemed obscene it’ll be the day I finally give up on humanity.

“Wow didn’t David have a small willy!” (Now come on you were thinking it so I said it.)

A very wise man (she could have been a woman) once wrote ‘the good ole days’ are 50 years long (I’d suggest they never existed in the first place), and the older I get the more I understand that writer’s perceptive thought processes, AND without Googling (because I never do) didn’t a philosopher living way back in antiquity days once utter the line “the trouble with the Youth of today is……..”

Well I have to be completely honest I’m no longer writing the post I’d first intended, the name of this Greek guy intrigues me so through the wonder’s of Google I just had to discover his actual quotation, and wouldn’t you just know I came across these following words of wisdom written by other Greek philosophers of the day.

A brief intermission (Get the popcorn out).

(The tale of how and why my Great Grandfather emigrated from Southern Ireland back in 1916 will have to wait, on and off I’ve been researching my family tree his father was a Boer war soldier and I’ve recently been given written evidence to prove something I’d suspected or hoped to be true…………… namely Grandpa was a political refugee, his family persecuted by Catholics so he sailed the Irish sea seeking asylum in the UK as both an illegal immigrant also a migrant worker…………… hmm well who’d have guessed, Grandpa was an asylum seeker, perhaps I should be more careful when discussing UK immigration!! 😀 ………. btw the irony isn’t lost!’)

Intermission over.

Returning to Googled Greek philosopher’s and their wayward children, ok this evening’s post is little more than regurgitated facts you’re all probably aware of, they’re lifted from the internet by me, nope nothing incisively new here but they’re entertaining reading all the same!

“They (Young People) have exalted notions, because they have not been humbled by life or learned its necessary limitations; moreover, their hopeful disposition makes them think themselves equal to great things – and that means having exalted notions. They would always rather do noble deeds than useful ones: Their lives are regulated more by moral feeling than by reasoning – all their mistakes are in the direction of doing things excessively and vehemently. They overdo everything — they love too much, hate too much, and the same with everything else.”
(Aristotle)

“The world is passing through troublous times. The young people of today think of nothing but themselves. They have no reverence for parents or old age. They are impatient of all restraint. They talk as if they knew everything, and what passes for wisdom with us is foolishness with them. As for the girls, they are forward, immodest and unladylike in speech, behaviour and dress.”
(Peter the Hermit in A.D. 1274)

“I see no hope for the future of our people if they are dependent on frivolous youth of today, for certainly all youth are reckless beyond words… When I was young, we were taught to be discreet and respectful of elders, but the present youth are exceedingly wise (disrespectful) and impatient of restraint.”
(Hesiod, 8th century BC)

“The children now love luxury; they show disrespect for elders and love chatter in place of exercise. Children are tyrants, not servants of the households. They no longer rise when their elders enter the room. They contradict their parents, chatter before company, gobble up dainties at the table, cross their legs, and tyrannize over their teachers.”
(Commonly attributed to Socrates by Plato)

Incidentally if you’re curious I don’t profess to be an expert on Greek philosophy, ask me a question about Socrates! And I’ll tell you the guy was a medical doctor, who smoked 20 cigarettes a day and played football for Brazil at the 1978 World Cup.

A fun read don’t you think? Especially ‘Peter The Hermit’s’ thoughts on girls of today……….. my guess is he didn’t have daughters or perhaps he should have got out a little more often!

A. Shepherdson 2018

Deleting his Facebook

Thoughts and opinions are all my own, and if you disagree with me then that’s absolutely fabulous ❤

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‘I’m not on Facebook!’ I fear I’m in a minority here with that statement because lol I’ve haven’t heard of anyone who isn’t on FB?

A brief tale for you and I’ll keep this short because I do get side tracked! Last Wednesday whilst chatting to a 21year old colleague at work (btw NO one is aware I have a WordPress….not that I know of!) This pleasant young guy and myself somehow got on to the subject of Facebook, probably Mark Zuckerberg sharing our personal data with every corporation and business under the sun started the conversation, well without prompting by myself Alex said something that quite made him chuckle, 😀

“Last night I deleted my Facebook and NO ONE noticed!” I should say at this juncture he’s NOT by nature an attention seeker? No Alex is the most laid back chilled person you could ever hope to meet, you only need to know quitting wasn’t a spur of the moment rash decision, no he’d given closing his FB a great deal of thought.

Baring in mind social media is valued by the young perhaps more than older generations appreciate, ‘Alex’ didn’t appear worried regretful or deflated by his considered decision, I sensed he was quite relieved after having planned his social Platform exit, and he was rather pleased none of his friends noticed he’d disappeared because that proved lol no one actually cared! On the other hand if for example 100 of his FB buddies had ‘WhatsApp’ messaged him saying,

OMFG (or similar excitable acronym) u jus quit FB, why???????? 😮 😮 😮 !!!!!!!!!!!!!’ 😮

Or if his many friends, for Alex is a popular guy, had called his mobile number worriedly enquiring,

“OMG Alex babe what’s happened? Why have you deleted your Facebook? Are you ok?”

He’d have been gutted, but no not a single person noticed………….. which made him chuckle. 😀

Well as we chatted together that early weekday morning, before getting down to the work we were supposed to be doing, Alex went on to briefly explain the reasons why he’d finished with FB. I’ll refrain from quoting extracts from our private conversation, but interestingly quitting was unconnected to Zuckerberg’s evasive answers to American Politicians in Congress………. as with all youngster’s data sharing didn’t worry him.

Frigging worries me!

Turns out my colleague’s sole reason for quitting is as simple as time management, he’d kept a daily log of the hours spent on FB that week, you know keeping up with the many fabulous and interesting things his friends had gotten up to and even more worryingly the time he spent ‘pimpng’ up his own Profile’ (his words not mine) and as you may have guessed, Alex did the Math and the final total quite shocked him.

A lot of hours!!!

So my work colleague, after a lot of careful consideration and he didn’t take the decision lightly, Alex bit the ‘proverbial’ bullet and quit. Whether he regrets this over the weeks to come and succumbs to opening a new Account? Only time will tell but that’s missing the point.

And my point is? I think FB is fabulous and a great way of connecting with people also keeping up with what friends are doing in their lives, and I’m in NO way criticising Facebook or social media in general. My take on his momentous decision  is I guess there comes a time in any young adult’s life, perhaps beginning work, cooking for oneself, when they realise social media has taken over their lives, consuming precious time that should be used dating real human beings or just enjoying the fruits and benefits of one’s newly paid labour……………. and lol that dreaded chain around every adult’s neck called responsibilities!

And if you are at all curious I’m neither on FB or ever intend to be, note I have nothing against this social Platform and make no judgement on the people who do use it because I know I am in a minority. But FB isn’t for me I’ll go further by saying I’m not entirely convinced any middle aged guy should own a Facebook, it just doesn’t sit right with me, my opinion is social media platforms should be the preserve of teenagers also lonely disconnected mums/moms who’s sole wish is to keep in touch with their friends………………I have female relatives who are on Facebook!

(My lol jumped up opinions only, feel free to disagree with these early evening thoughts and musings 🙂 )

Having said all that Facebook is the effective way to share WordPress posts, it makes sense to share your thoughts with circles of close friends on Twitter etc because blogging can be a lonely place, I understand this but I write because it’s good for my mental health, and no I’m afraid I won’t be appearing on a Facebook near you anytime sooon. 🙂 

©A. Shepherdson 2018