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Stuart Lennon

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Hold the front page! Candidate wins election.

tantrum

Oh, I’m sorry. But really. Can we not just get over ourselves?

What has actually happened?

The USA has chosen its 45th President (The 20th Republican).

There is some debate over the exact allegiance of some of the Presidents, but one reasonably popular set of numbers is 15 Democrats, 20 Republicans (including the Donald), 4 Whigs, 4 Democratic-Republicans (really), 1 Federalist and 1 George Washington.

I am far from a fan of the winning candidate. I find many of his utterances utterly repulsive. In their intention, their content and frequently their grammar. I am not alone in those feelings.

Yet 60 million (give or take) Americans voted for him in the election.

Depending on whom you listen to, this is because those voters are stupid or sexist. Racist or angry. Scared or scary. Some will tell you that he only won because the opposition was so poor.

As I write, disappointed citizens are demonstrating against the President-elect. Social media contains images of people likening Mr Trump to Adolf Hitler. The pollsters, the same ones that got the election completely wrong, are telling us that the redneck, misogynist, racist dumb-asses have won the day.

A detached observer might note that hip, liberal, political elite are throwing around unfounded hyperbole and nonsense about all those who voted for hyperbole and nonsense.

Many in the media are drawing parallels with Brexit. Not least the Donald himself. Once can see why. In both campaigns there was a degree of complacency. The British public wouldn’t vote Leave, surely. The Americans wouldn’t elect Donald Trump, obviously.

In both cases, there is a rush to explain how the redneck/mysogynist/racist/sexist/scared/scary dumb-asses have thrown the world to the dogs with scant consideration for themselves or their children. My God, think of the children!

Look, I am prepared to accept that I might be wrong. The UK may be about to plunge into depression and need to beg the Greeks for a bailout. Donald may be the front-man for the four horses of the apocalypse.

Is it too much of a stretch to believe that people voted for what they believed was best, quite probably for a whole range of reasons?

The British people have voted to leave the European Union.

The American people have voted for a Republican candidate in the election.

Those that disagree with those choices have every right to continue to make their case, voice their opinions and even demonstrate. These are rights in a democracy. However, I’m not sure that patronising and insulting those who disagree is a very effective way of winning them over.

This xenophobic cockwomble, for example, would still vote for Brexit.

 

 

Hello, Google

google-logo

Yesterday, I posted about my love affair with Apple coming to an end.

This was a little scary – as over the last few years, my brief encounters with Windows machines have not been happy ones. Never-ending updates, relentless malware attacks…

What was the alternative?

Since 2014, I have been using Google Apps – now suggestively renamed GSuite. It allows me to use Google’s e-mail, calendar and other apps under my own domains.

I had vaguely heard about something called a Chromebook.

These are typically pretty low specification machines that run a web browser, specifically, the Chrome browser. The processor is old, the memory is tiny. There’s nothing to them. They are cheap though. And fast.

The principle is that you keep everything in the cloud. All of your files. All of your e-mail. All of your programs.

Useless. How could that possibly work? I do far more than online stuff.

Actually…No. I don’t. Or, rather I do very little that cannot be done with a chromebook.

What do I actually do with my device?

All the top procrastination tools are online – Social media, online shopping, email.

Spreadsheets? GSuite has Google Sheets that can view and edit Excel. Likewise for Word and Powerpoint. There is even a work offline mode should the broadband go down or if I’m on the road. Microsoft programs are all available as web apps.

This post is being written on WordPress – a web app.

So – I bought a Chromebook. I’m writing on it now. Naturally, being me, I bought one that is premium. This is an HP, with a metal body, a gorgeous high definition screen, B&O speakers. Frankly, it looks a lot like a Macbook. Currently there are 8 tabs open. The machine is like lightning.

The laptop boots up in seconds. There are no programs taking an age to start up. Virus protection is done server-side by Google. As there are no programs, there are no updates. I like it.

Oh…and you can have two for the price of a Macbook. Three or four for the price of a high spec Macbook Pro.

I’m told that I will struggle to mix my next single or edit my 4k video release on this machine. Not things that I do.

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Are there limitations?

Maybe.

First. Everything is stored on GDrive, in the cloud. Navigating around that does not come naturally to me – but I I suspect a little research and I will discover a quicker way.

Second. I write (not enough) on Scrivener. Scrivener is great on a Mac, OK on a Windows machine, doesn’t work on a Chromebook. I will need to write elsewhere. Thus far, Google Docs looks favourite. It has only a tiny fraction of the functionality of Scrivener – but it has the bit that I need. 99% of Scrivener is wasted on me.

My Iphone has been retired too. I have a phone made by Google, called a Pixel. I tried an android phone before – and regretted it. This one however is great, and just works. A bit like Apple used to.

My hardware is built for Google apps. I’m using Google apps. Unsurprisingly, it’s seamless.

I suspect the real cost of this is that Google has everything. I have no doubt that it hoovers up all this data. Privacy? What’s that?

But, truth be told, I suspect that the privacy ship sailed a long time ago.

 

Bye, Apple

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I wrote here about my penchant for gadgets and my frustration with the big IT names.

In an effort to simplify my tech life, I had worked myself down from four devices (Imac, MacBook, Ipad and Iphone) to two. (MacBook and Iphone.) I even have a ‘dumb’ phone – for when being unconnected is a blessing.

What was becoming apparent was that my beloved Apple was losing its way. I do appreciate that it remains an absolutely massive company with huge sales and profits. However – I am going to stick to my guns here – over the next few years it is on a relentlessly downward trajectory.

Apple made amazing beautiful innovative stuff that just worked. Was pricing premium? Yes – but the kit was gorgeous and desirable. Ipod, Iphone, Macbook Air – wonderful, cutting edge tech.

Then Apple started doing strange things.

The watch. “You can get a text on your wrist!” Hmm…the whole world is talking about how to make tech more useful but less obtrusive, about the power of not allowing tech to dictate your life. So Apple make a device that can vibrate on your wrist every time a friend posts a picture of their breakfast on social media.

Iphone. “Like the last Iphone. But better.” Oh. Great.

“Look! This new Iphone won’t work with your headphones. You need to buy wireless ones.” Gee. Thanks.

Ipad. “Look! Like the last one. And look, a little one! Wait! A huge one. With a stylus.” Didn’t someone say something about a stylus being the sign that the wheels were coming off?

I was pinning my hopes on the new Macbook and latterly the Macbook Pro. The Macbook is really light, has a great screen and is an attractive piece of equipment. It only has one port. To make it really thin, the key board is different. Look. Its OK. It’s a nice piece of kit. But it’s not special.

Finally, after years of waiting, the new MacBook Pro was released. The good news is that your old headphones will work with this.

Yep. Apple’s flagship mobile phone announces the death of the wired headphones. Launched a month later, Apple’s flagship laptop announce the renaissance of the wired headphones.

What else is on the new MacBook Pro? Well – a spectacular price tag for a start.

There is a funky thing called an OLED bar. Which is essentially a strip of touch screen at the top of the keyboard.

The rest of the computing world has launched machines where the whole screen is touch – and laptops can now be hybrids – part computer, part tablet – but Apple has a strip. Right.

Dell, HP, Lenovo are all making laptops that are as pretty, as well-built and HIGHER spec than the Apples – for much less money. I mean a lot less money.

IT experts have been saying this for years – but to a layman like me, Apple stuff just worked and visibly better quality than the competition. That’s simply not true anymore.

So – I have jumped ship. I am using no Apple hardware at all.

What am I using? The photos is a pretty strong hint – but that’s a whole new post on its own.

 

 

 

 

 

Keep Calm!

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Every time I think things are calming down…

Sterling is down, the FTSE is up, consumer confidence is up, no down, no it’s…

“HARD BREXIT!”

“Boo! Soft Brexit!”

“Wait! No Brexit.”

I do wish that everybody would take a moment and calm down.

The UK voted to leave the European Union. To do so, it must trigger a process. It must say, “We are leaving.” There then follows a period of negotiation, on how the UK and the EU will interact.

That’s it folks. No Armageddon. No plagues of locusts; essentially, a lot of chat.

As the Prime Minister has indicated that she is going to trigger the process, the negotiations have, in effect, started. The ones that we get to hear about are the pointless ones – where politicians posture and spout nonsense, all the time checking polling indicators after each comment.

Again, the nonsense is not from one side or the other – everyone is talking rubbish.

Negotiations can be daunting things. Actually though – they are straightforward.

Right now – there are no tariffs between the UK and the EU. Post exit, they could be left as they are, revert to World Trade Organisation defaults or be somewhere in between.

On the UK side – pretty much everyone is happy for there to be no tariffs. Where there is difference is on what other things might need to be accepted. Free movement of labour being the current hot topic.

The EU side is a little more interesting. There is an open secret that many EU leaders fear that should the UK prosper outside of the EU, then the Union itself is under threat. They want the UK to struggle. “There must be a price.” This is a political imperative.

For the majority of member states, free trade with the UK is profitable and contributes to economic prosperity. There is a clear economic argument for free trade to continue, unfettered.

Were I a cynic, I might believe that some EU leaders will only offer access to the single market at a price that they know the UK won’t pay. I might believe that they are prepared to put their own political agendas before the interests of their citizens welfare and prosperity.

The negotiations around Brexit may become about the reshaping of the EU, they may not. The UK may have unfettered access to the internal market, it may not.

The British civil service rates itself as the best of the best. With some justification, it considers itself as the body that gets “the real work done.” The diplomats and technocrats are doubtless already working away. We should keep calm and let them get on with it.

Let me leave you with a quote from Sir Humphrey Appleby, in “Yes Minister” 1980.

“Diplomacy is about surviving until the next century – politics is about surviving until Friday afternoon.”

The Camino

start-n-finish

Been a bit quiet here.

Mostly because I have been blogging here.

I’m off on a walk. In memory of the man in the collage above, Terry Anderson.

I’m not alone, I will be walking with friends. Laurent Gauduchau, Jean-Christophe Poussou and Stuart Smith. We all knew Terry through the Prague Barbarians Rugby Club. Last year, after a punch-up with cancer, Terry passed away at Our Lady’s Hospice in Blackrock, Dublin. If you have a pound or two spare, then I know those people would put it to incredibly good use. You can donate here.

Keen to show their support (or possibly to laugh at us) two more Prague Barbarians are coming to walk the first day with us. Franck Neel and Germain Gouranton.

The Camino, particularly the route that we are walking, the ‘Frances’, is a well-trodden route. We will be far from alone. The route is 500 miles give or take, and I intend to walk it all, but in stages.

This year, the four are starting in Saint Jean Pied de Port in France and walking hard for six days, staying in hostels along the way. With luck, we may get as far as Logrono; a hundred miles. We may not. We shall see what we shall see.

I set off on Saturday, less than 48 hours from now. I’m flying to Bilbao, where I’ll meet Stuart, who is coming in from Dublin. We will then transfer to SJPDP where the French contingent await us.

As the day draws nearer, I’m nervous. I have the gear, I have done some training, but I have never tried to walk 100 miles before. Will the knees hold up? Will I hold up the others? Will we grate on each other’s nerves in hours?

Truth is, I don’t know.

Along with the nerves, comes anticipation. It is something that I have never done before. It is challenging. It is different.

That’s kind of cool.

Maybe I’ll write about it.

On camino, I’ll be updating www.sensibleshoescamino.com and @frontrowcamino

 

#BulletJournal #BuJo

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I regret to report that the star of my last post, Samuel has still not signed up for the blog. I suspect that his emergency business trip has kept him busy.

The laptop is re-listed on eBay, so there is every chance I will have another long exchange with a fraudster. If I do, I’ll report back.

#BulletJournal. If you have not heard of this system, you can find out more at this excellent website. I am experimenting with several analogue productivity tools, and the bullet journal is the latest.

For the moment, I will not show you any of the internal pages. I need to learn how to electronically obscure some of the more private data.

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This is my index so far.

I use the # symbol for collections. These are pages where I track specific things. There is a log of my postal correspondence (if you are under 30, google ‘Letters’), a log of things that I am waiting for, a reading list and ideas for blog posts. I will soon add a habit tracker.

The BulletJournal, for me, acts as daily task manager, note capture space, and reference hub. I don’t use it much as a calendar or for reflective journaling. That’s my choice. Despite my love for the analogue approach to many things – I have yet to discover something that can compete with an electronic calendar. Accessible from anywhere, and most importantly, shareable.

Every day, I “rapid log”. I write down things that I need to get done, things that I need to remember, or just observations. It’s quick, it’s easy and forgiving. It doesn’t interrupt my flow. As I go through the day, items get ticked off, crossed out or processed in another way. At the end of the day, or maybe even at the end of the week, I review the logs.

This review is the key exercise. This is where I sweep up all open bullets and either carry them forward or deem them no longer relevant. There are no loose ends. The system has mechanisms for deferring and scheduling bullets, which can be as simple or as complicated as you wish. For me, the critical thing is to stop using my brain to store data, but to act on things.

The #BulletJournal system rewards. There is something very satisfying closing out a day with every bullet dealt with.

Yes, I know that there are some amazing apps for this. I own a decent share of them. Todoist, To do, Wonderlist, Any.Do are all brilliant and I have used them in the past. For me they all lapse quite quickly, as they cover only the task function. I then need to use another app for the notes. Somehow, pen and paper engages me more. It feels like commitment.

Ultimately, being productive and organised comes from within. Not from a book, or from a system.

Speaking personally, I need all the help I can get.

Samuel. Fraudster.

Fraud

First – a writing update.

I finally plucked up the courage to let someone read a draft. My writing buddy, Amanda Fleet, published author, soon appearing at Bloody Scotland has looked at Act I of my novel.

She was, of course, blinded by its brilliance. There may have been one or two tiny constructive criticisms.

Oh alright, there were lots of criticisms and her eyesight remains fine – but they were all really helpful and she didn’t tell me to give up; so I’m calling it a win. 😉

Today though, I’m going to share with you a brief email exchange that I had with a Samuel Barton. Please take this as a cautionary tale, although it did give me a laugh too. His proof-reading is worse than mine.

Samuel is a terribly nice chap, who placed the winning bid on my old laptop, which I was selling on eBay. Concurrent with this email exchange, a fake Paypal email address was sending me entirely fictitious confirmations of payment.

Hello Seller,
It is my pleasure to inform you that I have carried out the payment via PayPal to your PayPal id. kindly check your PayPal email address (inbox,spam or junk mail) for the confirmation email of my Payment from PayPal.I also have the email receipt of the payment from PayPal with me.I want the item sent to my Nephew’s address who is living and working in West Africa.I would have asked you to post it to my eBay address in UK but I am presently going to Spain for a business trip. I sincerely hope you could assist me in shipping the item over there so it would be convenient for him to pick it up when it gets there.i also want to use the item as a surprise birthday Gift for his Cousin who is having his birthday next week.Here is the delivering address of my Nephew confirmed with pay pal.

ADDRESS;
JERRY DAMMY
109, Adefemi Street,
Abesan Ipaja,
Lagos,23401
Nigeria.

I want you to ship the item tomorrow via Royal Mail Airmail International 1st Class Delivery, so that the item will get there ASAP. I’ve added you £130 which should cover for the postage cost. Please get back to me with the shipment details (shipping Bar code) after shipping to the address above.

NOTE: Please wrap the item carefully, write GIFT on the paper. Please don’t use any other postage service except Royal Mail.

Am sorry for the inconvenience,please bear with me
Regards

Hi Samuel,
My apologies, but I will only send the item, as advertised, to a UK address.
Best Regards

Thanks for your swift response lennon,Am sorry about the address,like have said in my first email that am on a business trip which was an emergency for,I wasn’t xpeceting the item go be posted off the UK and I don’t have any body to receive it for me in the UK,pls for God sake,assist me post it to the address which is also confirmed by paypal,have added £130 also which will cover for the postage cost to the address,I will forever great full if you and leave you a positive feedback if you grant my wish..thanks

Hi Samuel
I am sorry to hear of your emergency. It sounds terrible.
I regret that I will only send the item to the UK address.
I’ll see if I can live with feedback.
Perhaps you should withdraw your bid.
Good luck with your business trip.

Best Regards

Lennon you not getting me right..I have nobody to receive it for me in the UK,don’t worry about the item going international as it will get to its destination un damage,pls give this issue a very good consideration…also I can no longer remove my bid again.

NEW MAIL

Pls.

Hi Samuel
I will not send the item outside of the UK.
You can retract the bid very simply, click on the following link
http://offer.ebay.co.uk/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?RetractBidShow
Best Regards

cannot do that as i no longer have acess to my money again,and paypal said they cannot refund me as its already in your account,waiting for a proof of postage from you to complete it,pls lennon just do this for me for God’s sake.

Hi Samuel
How very unusual. Paypal won’t refund your money? Just go to their Buyer Protection section. They will help you out.
Best Regards

I can wait for 21days mate…you not even given me a second think…

Hi Samuel
I’m sure you’ll manage OK.
Best Regards

Am disappointed in you lennon..thought u said u a writer??a writer doesn’t seem to be this rigid..I read little of your writes and you seem very loyal and cool but you’ve just proof me wrong..its bad ..I though the word says “customer are always right”??,am really unhappy with this and you’ve just embarrassed me in front of my nephew as have told him his package is on the way which he will so anxious to receive soonest,now you’ve got my paypal empty to the extent that I can’t even purchase another as I don’t have enough funds left..its very bad lenno.

New Mail

Better still can you dispatch it to my wife in USA???

Another New Mail

Pls lennon

Ah Samuel, the only reason I’m still talking to you is because I’m a writer.
Your ineffective attempts to defraud me are, in their own way, fascinating.
Stealing is not a way of life Samuel. You are a fraud. You are not even very good at it.
So – no I can’t dispatch it to your wife in the USA. Not even if you say pretty please.
Go get a life Samuel.
Best Regards

I have not had a response to this last one yet, nor has Samuel signed up to receive my monthly newsletter. C’mon Sam. You know you want to.

 

Eating Food

eat-real-food

Now, we are on to one of my specialised subjects. You don’t get to be twenty one stone without packing away a fair amount of food.

It is not completely new to me that twenty one stone is, shall we say, a little on the heavy side. Like seven stone on the heavy side.

As I gave up smoking two and a half years ago, that excuse is wearing a little thin now.

After hours of research (sitting on my ample arse), I came to the conclusion that I may need to reassess ‘my relationship with food’. This is quite a revelation for someone wholly unaware that I had a relationship with food. Relationship? I just eat the stuff.

Another conclusion was that moving was far better than not moving. Walking is a big part of that – and I am doing lots of it – as you may have read here. 

So, the long-suffering Mrs L and I are making some changes to our diet. We are going back to basics – and trying to eat as much ‘good’ stuff as possible, while cutting out the ‘bad’ stuff.

If you actually get into researching this, you soon realise that nobody has the first clue as to what is good and what is bad. It changes on an almost daily basis.

I suspect that this is partly because the workings of the human body are incredibly complicated, and partly because the vast majority of the research is funded by people trying to make money.

The dairy industry for example funds studies that unequivocally demonstrate the health benefits of dairy products. Try telling that to the Association of Soya Bean Producers though…their proof is much more ‘proof-ier’.

My head hurt as I sorted claim from counter-claim. I opted for an entirely unscientific approach and am making up my own rules…

  1. Lots of colours are nice. (Careful cooking stuff, in case you lose the colour.)
  2. Mucking about (or processing as the industry calls it) with food never does it any good.
  3. All things are fine – in moderation. (That last word is a challenge for me in many, many areas!)
  4. Cooking is fun.

So far…so good. We have made more dishes ‘from scratch’. Tasty. We are eating more colourful, unprocessed and uncooked food.

It’s fun. We ‘feel’ healthy, and we are losing weight. I’m a positive sylph-like figure as I passed the nineteen and a half stone mark. (Admittedly – a bloody big sylph.)

Sunday. Restful Sunday.

Lazy Sundays

What a day!

I awoke early, having volunteered to be starter for a competition at the golf club. Hardly a taxing job, I simply tick off the competitors on the start sheet, remind them of what competition they are playing in what format and send them on their way with hearty “Play well Gents. Enjoy your day.”

Just after dawn, I set out to give the dog his walk. Both he and I enjoy the early mornings, especially on a Sunday, when the village is quiet, but for the birdsong.

The sky was darker than the weather forecast had indicated, with some drizzle looking a certainty rather than a possibility. Nevertheless, I put my trust in the BBC and donned shorts and a polo shirt. As a precaution, I put a waterproof jacket in the car.

Drizzle? It was bloody raining sideways. I briefed each flight of miserable looking golfers from the shelter of the starter’s hut, promising them all drier weather to come. (It’s nearly always best to lie in these circumstances, after all without hope, what is left?)

Discretion being the better part of valour, I left the course as soon as I had sent the final group on its way.

A friend was due to drop by. We chatted, drank tea until the mighty Mrs L proposed lunch. Those who know me are aware that I have never knowingly declined an offer of lunch. As it was a Sunday, I graduated from tea to chardonnay and was soon in a state of blissful contentment.

As Murray cruised to a two set lead, the sky brightened, and Mrs L suggested we might play a few holes ourselves. (She is a zealous convert).

Off we went and played nine holes before retiring to the club house.

“Drink?” She enquired.

Here I was, at the golf course, on a Sunday afternoon, with a chauffeur.

“Pint of London Pride for me!”

This was shaping up to be a fantastic Sunday. I set a quick pace on the pint, and had another ordered before Mrs L had managed a sip of her soft drink. The beer gently acquainting itself with the wine in my tummy, I sauntered to the passenger seat full of bonhomie and good cheer.

As Mrs L prepared to reverse through the drive gates at home, she pressed the button to open them. (We are terribly posh, you know.) Nothing happened. As is the way with all things electric or electronic, she pressed the offending button repeatedly, and with increasing force. All to no avail. She was obviously doing it wrong. I took the fob from her and repeated the strident button-pressing.

I suppressed a hoppy belch with a honeyed gooseberry finish and clambered from the car. The keypad that usually glows blue was dark.

“There’s a power cut. Give me the front door key, I’ll go around and open the gates manually.”

Mrs L showed me a solitary key in her hand. An alarming habit has developed where to avoid the massive bulk of two keys, Mrs L sallies forth with only a back door key. An admirable strategy – unless of course the back gates become disabled for any reason. It was not clear whether I was more furious at her for only having one key or at myself for having none at all.

I sized up the gate in much the same way as I imagine a Royal Marine Commando looks at an assault course.

“Go and ask someone for a ladder.”

Fortunately, Mrs L has a more realistic view of my commando abilities.

A step-ladder was provided, tested and ascended. At the top, I took a moment to breathe and admire the view. (I was, after all five or six feet up; heady stuff.) A few neighbours looked on, in what I can only imagine, was unbounded admiration. Determined, I tucked my shirt firmly into the waistband of my shorts. The dog, locked in the house, was going bananas at the sight of his Lord and Master, slightly pissed, teetering atop a step-ladder at the back gate.

With the grace and agility of a hippopotamus putting on cycling shorts, I heaved my myself over the gatepost, onto the wheelie bins. One made a worrying crack as my weight settled onto it. Fearing calamity, I dismounted the bins at pace, and strode to the back door to release the frantic hound and get the manual override key.

Much patting of backs ensued, with some wifely concern over a scrape down the inside of one leg. As I fought back the tears, (and another of those hoppy belches) I assured her that I would be OK. John, our neighbour, took his stepladder back, eyeing it with a degree of concern. I suspect he will test it extensively before trusting it to take his weight.

With the electricity down, no means of cooking supper and the hound needing a walk – there was only one option. I would walk the dog to the pub, while Mrs L got changed and drove to meet us there.

“Pint of Ringwood and a bowl of water for the little fella please…”

Is Summer coming?

UK Summer

Andy Murray just won his semi-final at Wimbledon, so it must be summer. The weather doesn’t appear to have caught on.

Ah well. Maybe the sun is on its way.

Terrible events unfolded in the US – lots of shooting. Horrible.

The UK remains devastated by Brexit. Those who wanted to Remain – continue to voice their fears and concerns, as is their right.

An unfortunate side-effect of this is what the markets call sentiment. A large portion of the population and a majority of the media are constantly warning everyone how the Leave vote will lead to a huge financial downturn. Sentiment is, well, negative. The markets therefore are, well, negative. The doom and gloom becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy.

There are many brighter people than I talking about each individual element and what it means – but frankly, I’m bored of it. I urge any and all thinking people to be measured and sensible – and question every ‘fact’ you hear.

I was in Dublin for a weekend with friends. As a consequence, I switched back to my iPhone, to give me internet access while away. This was a change from my ‘logged off’ state that I wrote about here.

I was soon checking my e-mail every hour, posting photos onto social media and was never more than six inches from the phone. Upon my return, I found myself in the midst of many social media debates on Brexit.

I found myself feeling anxious – not specific, just a general malaise. It took me longer to go to sleep at night. I didn’t sleep too well. My productivity plummeted.

Yesterday, I moved my sim back to the Punkt ‘dumb’ phone. I’m now ‘in withdrawal’ – wanting to check my phone all the time, but not being able to: However, I’m already more relaxed and productive and I know that I will reap increasing benefits over the next couple of weeks. I even managed to get some writing done today.

This technology stuff; be careful folks. It’s as addictive as heroin.

One thing that I won’t miss from social media is the vitriol. I have had friends message me that they voted ‘Leave’ but are frightened to admit it on social media because of the trolling. I have tried to be sensible and reasonable in all of my posts – sometimes in the face of very strident, righteous proclamations.

I have also learned that I am a ‘xenophobic cockwomble’.

So there.