Important Information For Our Readers

This one

Dear Reader

Thank you for your continued loyalty and support during these past months, which we know have been difficult ones.

As life begins to return to some normality, we want to reassure you that we’re continuing to do everything we can to keep you safe while still providing the quality poetry and great art that James Proclaims is known for.

You will have seen some updates from the Government recently and I wanted to share our approach with you in light of this latest guidance.

FACE COVERINGS

From Friday 24 July, we’re asking you to follow the new government legislation on face coverings while reading our blog.

All readers, apart from children under 11 and those who have reasonable cause, such as a health condition, disability, physical or mental impairment, should wear a face mask, scarf or other covering. Not all exemptions are visible, so please be understanding of other readers.

You will also be pleased to know our writers will be wearing face coverings. These will be worn by all writers who are not exempt when they are in areas where two metre social distancing cannot be achieved or where other measures, such as screens, are not present.

 

SMALLER QUEUES

As readers return to their normal reading patterns, we’re seeing queues reducing, and no queues at all on many posts. If you do find yourself queuing, please try reading outside of the peak lunchtime and early evening hours when it’s quieter.

 

READING HOUR FOR THE ELDERLY AND VULNERABLE

At the beginning of lockdown, when some posts were in high demand and the blog was very busy, we created a dedicated hour at the start of each day for our elderly and vulnerable readers.

We know how much this was appreciated and so – although our posts are now less busy and we have effective safety measures in place – we will continue to keep the first reading hour on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays reserved for our elderly and vulnerable readers.

We hope these measures reassure you that we take the safety of readers very seriously. Thank you for your patience and support in these challenging times. I look forward to seeing you commenting on one of our posts soon.

Take good care,

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J Proclaims
Managing Director
The James Proclaims Partnership

This one

Reflections On The Recent Lockdown By A Man Who Might Be Slightly Inebriated

James Proclaims (4)

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It will be Monday when I post this but, as I write, it is Saturday afternoon. Little Proclaims and I spent much of this morning doing our usual weekend daddy-daughter activities, which mostly consists of feeding ducks and jumping in puddles. I join in with the duck/goose/swan feeding as Little Proclaims, while content to hold a piece of stale bread and shout at the associated waterfowl, is rather less than proactive in actually dispensing the bread to the beneficiaries. I tend not, as a rule, to jump in puddles due to not possessing the appropriate footwear. And not being a toddler. It’s more about the footwear though…

As of the 4th July we have, of course, been permitted to return to playparks, so that too featured this morning. Little Proclaims has very much enjoyed this renewed relationship with the swings, slide and roundabout but by far her favourite activity in the playpark at the moment is to run around aimlessly while shouting excitedly. We go out early and are alone in the park so I try not inhibit this expression of unbridled joy, unless she looks as though she’s about to do something that will result some kind of mishap. Which does happen quite often…

Little Proclaims is now enjoying a much deserved afternoon nap and I am sitting in front of a televised football match that I have fairly limited interest in, drinking some very nice beer, which I purchased for a bargain price at the supermarket and which is making me question whether I will ever return to the pub. I suppose I would like to socialise with the small number of people that I consider friends again but frankly the beer is just as good, and significantly cheaper, at home and I wonder if I really need to go the pub to see them. Maybe the ‘new normal’ will present us with lots of new opportunities to get together, which won’t involve imbibing alcohol in a claustrophobic environment on a Friday evening. Probably not, the world does seem intent on making the ‘new normal’ as much like the ‘old normal’ as possible. Then again I’m sure the ‘old normal’ had plenty of activities that weren’t ‘the pub’. I just didn’t pay them much heed. Perhaps I should stop waiting for the world to change around me and just be a bit more proactive. That does sound like a lot of effort though.

I’m also feeling fairly reluctant to get a haircut. Having rejected Mrs Proclaims kind offer to trim my locks during lockdown, I now have quite the mop. If work, which in my case is based in a secondary school, were operating as usual I’d probably feel more inclined to sort it out, because teenagers can be quite cruel, but there are so few of them there at the moment that I feel I can hang on, particularly with the six-week summer holiday coming up. No doubt by the time September rolls around I’ll be desperate for a trim but I feel I can let things play out for a little longer – who knows, I may decide to opt for an entirely new look at the end of all of this. Maybe a new hairstyle is what I’ve been waiting for to kickstart my journey to being a new and better me.

Or maybe I’ll just be the same person but with different hair.

I expect around the end of August I’ll cave in just have my usual haircut anyway. The non-descript but easy-to-manage look that has served me so adequately for all these years.

I should at least be a slightly fitter version of myself as a result of all of this. My thrice-weekly run has now increased to four-times a week. The main result of adding an extra run per week seems to be that I’ve become much much slower on all of my runs, but as the notion of going for four runs a week was unthinkable only a few months ago, I’d still have to count this as progress.

The swimming pools are due to open soon. No doubt with lots of rules that make it far more difficult to access them, but I should still be able to add swimming back into the mix in some way. I’d like to imagine I’ll stick with the running too, not least because the gyms are also re-opening so there should be less runners about in general, which might mean I can stop getting up at 5am to avoid them.

That said, Little Proclaims does like an early start so it’s unlikely to be the end of my 5am alarm calls…

Being the parent of a small child and still largely having to go to work did mean that lockdown wasn’t the life-altering experience for me as it was for many. Still, I did acquire a little more time as a result of it and I wonder if I really made the most of it.

I’ll have to do better during the next one.

 

James Explains Independence Day

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Happy 4th July everyone!

Today is officially Independence Day in the UK!

What’s that?

July 4th is Independence Day in the United States?

No, that can’t be right. Unless you mean the time that Will Smith and Jeff Goldblum saved the world from aliens in 1996? Because I’m pretty sure that was a movie. And not a great movie if I recall. I mean the effects were pretty good, and the two leads were decent enough, but it was all pretty derivative otherwise.

I haven’t seen the 2016 sequel, but I’ve heard it’s eminently forgettable. Actually, maybe I have seen it…

Anyway, if we’re not talking about the movie then I’m not sure how anyone could claim that Independence Day is a US thing rather than a UK thing.

What’s that you say? It’s to commemorate the 1776 Declaration of Independence, when the Thirteen Colonies ceased being part of the British Empire?

Actually, to be fair, that doesn’t sound like something we would want to celebrate in the UK. Indeed, I can’t imagine we would have been overly keen on that development back in 1776.

But hey, water under the bridge and all that.

If something that happened 244 years ago is still worth having a party for then go for it my American friends.

But we’ve got an Independence Day that really is worth celebrating over here. Because today is the day that we’ve finally beaten COVID 19 and we can get back to normality and doing what we do best in this country.

Which is getting drunk.

Because the pubs are open again!

Except for where they aren’t. Which I think is Scotland and Wales. And the city of Leicester. Which could be indicative that the easing of lockdown in the rest of the UK is premature. But it definitely isn’t.

Obviously, we haven’t stopped getting drunk just because the pubs have been shut anyway, because we’re British and the second the rules were relaxed on going to the park more than once a day, we’ve been in out in our masses, enjoying the sunshine and getting absolutely hammered. But now we can pay more money to do that in the pubs, which is superb news for the British Economy.

So, on this most British of Independence Days, I urge all of my compatriots to head to their nearest alehouse with the utmost haste.

Unless you want to get a haircut first, because that is also now permitted.

And shops have been open for ages, so you can go and spend your money there too, as long as you are planning on getting absolutely wasted at some point today.

Oi, you in the Lycra – where do you think you’re going?

The gym? I don’t think so my friend. While it is an actual fact that we have beaten the virus to a safe enough level for excessive alcohol consumption in overcrowded bars, we still need to act with some restraint. Gyms and swimming pools are obviously much more dangerous than pubs. Yes, today is a day for celebration but we can’t afford to do anything reckless like indoor exercise.

Honestly, some people…

Oh, and in terms of meeting up with other people, just to clarify:

  • You can meet as many people as you like in the pub
  • You can meet up to six people outside unless you would like to meet more people than that.
  • You can go to another person’s house and stay overnight, but you must only go to one house at a time. Anyone caught simultaneously in two houses at any one time will feel the full weight of the law. Which is currently about 8.2 mg, the same weight as the average feather.
  • You still need to stay either 2 metres or 1 metre apart from other people unless you can’t or you don’t want to.
  • You must get drunk.
  • There was definitely something about bubbles. Possibly champagne bubbles, but I’m sure any sparkling wine will do.

Above all else, remember these simple rules:

 

Stay Drunk

Ignore The Facts

Spend Your Money

 

 

 

Ducks Versus Puddles (Round 2)

James Proclaims (4)

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Last week we explored the efficacy of ducks (or more accurately geese, which aren’t ducks) at hindering my morning run, in comparison to puddles. That round went to puddles. Let’s see if ducks (and associated waterfowl) can level things up this week.

 

Prior to current world events, I would often take my daughter to one of the many playparks that we’re lucky to have within walking distance of our home. She’s quite an early riser, so we were often able to get to the park before other people and would frequently have use of the facilities for a good hour before anyone else arrived.

Which was great for me, because the one thing that has not been a hardship during the pandemic is staying away from other people. Little Proclaims is generally more sociable than her father but lacks any kind of boundaries or social etiquette (which I understand is fairly normal for a toddler) so she did enjoy having the run of the park without me constantly having to restrain her. She loved the swings, the slide and the roundabout, but her favourite activity, if it had been raining, which it does quite a bit in the UK, was to jump in puddles.

Indeed she loves jumping in puddles so much that, when we were adopting a pretty strict ‘stay at home’ regime during lockdown, she would often fill her little plastic watering can, from the sand and water table my parents bought her for her birthday, and create little puddles in our garden to jump in. Even better was when she could convince me to get out of the camping chair, I’d mistakenly thought I could relax in while supervising her, to get the big watering can and make some really big puddles for her.

March and April involved me being at home a lot more as I initially tried in vain to work from home for two weeks and then we had the Easter holidays, which were still observed notionally by schools, although ironically less so than in years when schools were open as normal. As a result, Little Proclaims and I spent a lot of time in the garden. And even though I returned to working in school at the end of April, I was only able to work on-site for the duration of the ‘school day’ which in reality represents a fraction of the time I spent in my office pre-pandemic so the garden fun was largely able to continue most afternoons. Things have slowly crept back to, if not quite normal, then ‘still quite busy’ at work and the hours I can access the site have increased as more of my colleagues and more students have also returned to the school.

But it has still felt important to continue to make time in my day to have fun with my daughter. Pre-lockdown I was in danger of becoming ‘the boring parent’, certainly on weekdays. I probably remain the ‘more boring parent’ because Mrs Proclaims applies the same level of intensity towards parenting as she does to pretty much everything, which means that Little Proclaims is phenomenally entertained by her mother, to the point that both are often exhausted by the time I get home. Nonetheless, I would still like to think that my daughter enjoys my company as much as I enjoy hers. Then again, if she enjoys spending time with me only half as much as I enjoy spending it with her then she’s still having a great time.

As lockdown has gradually eased (rightly or wrongly), though we’ve still been inclined to remain Chez Proclaims for the most part, the little one and I have ventured out for a walk most afternoons. We can’t yet access the play parks because, understandably while it is absolutely fine to gather in large numbers and drink alcohol in our local parks, it is clearly not safe to play on the swings, so Little Proclaims and I have had to make do with going to see the ducks. Some days, if we have any leftover bread, we even feed the ducks.

Obviously, as with ‘Round 1’ of Ducks versus Puddles, when I say ducks, I really mean the various associated waterfowl that frequent the bit of the Thames near where we live. But that does include ducks. And Little Proclaims does think of them all as ducks. Or sometimes canards, because as I’ve mentioned before, my daughter is quite good, for an almost-two-year-old, at speaking French.

But she doesn’t call them waterfowl. And never geese, despite the fact that the geese outnumber the other birds by a considerable amount. It’s almost as if a parental figure has taught her to call them ducks…

Anyway, she likes these little outings a lot. I often take her out when she wakes up from her afternoon nap. My child, much like her father, is not the loveliest of people when roused from slumber. She can be a little cranky post-nap and while I theoretically sympathise, because ‘morning me’ is best avoided by all, I’m never been sure how to help her snap out of her mood. But one mention of ducks and she’s a different child, straining at the leash to get out. It’ a literal leash too, because Little Proclaims is so mobile that I’ve long since given up on taking the pushchair, so she mostly gets where we’re going under her own steam. But because she has all the road safety awareness of a toddler, I have to employ the use of reigns. These come in the form of an owl-themed rucksack with a helpful cord for me to hold onto. She likes wearing the rucksack, so she doesn’t object to this limitation, and when we eventually get to a nice open field I let her run free, which she loves.

The ducks and associated waterfowl are always a source of fascination for her, and, unlike her pater, who would happily avoid the hissing velociraptor-like geese, she’s quite content to get close, unaware that there might be any danger, which apparently there isn’t, because the geese, seemingly realising that their bluff has been called, retreat more quickly at the sight of a small child in the afternoon than they do at the sight of a large man running slowly in their direction in the morning.

A couple of weeks ago I would have been quite confident in telling you that my daughter’s favourite activity at the moment is going to see (and sometimes feed) the ducks.

But then it rained for a few days and all of a sudden there were puddles galore on our outings, including a veritable ‘festival’ of puddles in a local, currently not well-used, car park that we happened upon. And I’ve never seen her happier than running and splashing in those puddles.

She still likes the ducks, but I’m pretty sure that she prefers the puddles.

There have been two key indicators:

  1. She happily walked through a pack of velociraptors – sorry flock of geese – the other day, completely oblivious to them as she made her way to, what wasn’t even that impressive, a puddle.
  2. When I coax her away from the ducks in order to return home, she sometimes objects a little. When I try and take her away from the puddles, I’m met with full toddler meltdown, the kind which draws judgmental stares from the general public, and I have to literally carry her kicking and screaming all the way home.

So, at the end of round two, the ‘entertaining my daughter during lockdown’ round, puddles are very clearly the winners.

Which means that in the clash of the titans that was ‘Ducks versus Puddles’, Puddles have actually won the series comfortabley 2-0.

And as I can’t think of any more rounds with which to assess them, then I can categorically state that puddles are better (or much much worse depending on your perspective) than ducks.

I imagine we’ve all learned something today.

 

Renaissance

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It has been a difficult time
For everyone
And the world might have changed now
Beyond all recognition

It is more than possible
That things will never be the same
And as a species we will have to adjust
To adapt, to reframe, to reflect

But out of the ashes of despair
Opportunity rises like the Phoenix
Now is the time to innovate
To improve
To reassess our priorities
To think differently

Although the current plan
As far as I can make out
Is to do things exactly the same as before
But less well

James Explains The Easing Of Lockdown

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There were one or two suggestions after my post on Tuesday that I was somehow advocating irresponsible drinking with large numbers of other people in the park. So, I should probably clarify that that is not in line with current government advice.

Current government advice is that you can get drunk anywhere you like, as long as you are outside. So don’t feel restricted to the parks. The seaside is just as appropriate.

But it’s important to remember, that if you are going to mingle with others from outside your household, you should restrict the number of people to six. But obviously if someone else from your household comes along, they don’t count, so you could have seven people really. And that person can bring five other people too, so there could be twelve of you. Throw in a third or fourth person from your household and their allocation of friends and you can have quite the party.

And you can have that party in your garden, but not in your house. Obviously with all that government mandated drinking, some people will need the toilet, and that is not allowed. But you are allowed to use common sense. And common sense would dictate that if someone does need the toilet, they should probably be allowed to go. If you have enough toilet roll obviously. And if you’re going to let people into the house to use the toilet, then common sense would suggest that they might as well be permitted to use other rooms in the house. So, rather than restricting your gathering of (however many people live in your house multiplied by six) to just the garden, you may as well make full use of the facilities.

But remember to stay two metres apart. Unless you don’t want to. They’re probably going to scrap that advice soon anyway so it doesn’t really matter.

And there’s absolutely no need to wear a face mask unless you are a masked vigilante. But you should wear one if you are a masked vigilante because otherwise it would be false advertising and we don’t need that level of confusion in our lives right now.

Essentially though, you can go where you like and do what you want. Although I can’t take my daughter to the swings, because that isn’t yet permitted. But schools are open again, except where they aren’t, because all children, across the board and without exception, are completely 100% immune to the virus and so are all adults who work with children. Also people who are related to children or related to people who work with children are immune so schools are perfectly safe. And park benches are safe, for people to sit and drink in the sunshine. But swings, slides, climbing frames and seesaws are not safe.

Unless they are in a school. Then they are safe.

Anyway if you are concerned about the easing of lockdown then don’t worry, because the five conditions that needed to be met before lockdown could be eased have now been met. Apart from the ones that haven’t. But they more or less have all been met if you just ignore some of the facts.

I hope I have cleared up any misconceptions but please do ask Facebook or Twitter if you need further clarification.

 

 

 

Hair Today, Gone Tomorrow?

James Proclaims (4)

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As is the case for most people, it has been a while since I had a haircut.

Not that this is anything new, I’m more than a little familiar with the ‘unkempt’ look. It’s kind of my style really.

Still, even by my standards I’m looking less kempt than usual. It doesn’t bother me, I don’t see anyone anyway. And I have a hat for the occasions I need to venture out.

And Mrs Proclaims says she likes my hair longer, so there’s no problem on the marital front.

Except that she wants to cut my hair.

Not because she thinks I really need a haircut, but because she just wants to play at being a hairdresser.

Now my wife has many talents, she is an exceptionally gifted linguist, a high-achieving academic and a wonderful mother to our daughter.

But she is not a hairdresser. And her claims that she wanted to be a hairdresser when she was a little girl don’t, in my eyes, qualify her for the job.

After all, I had dreams of being a rock star, but I won’t be headlining Glastonbury any time soon. And not just because the festival has been cancelled this year.

So I am refusing to let her cut my hair.

Some might call me belligerent, others may call me vain. And I’m fine with either of those labels – they both are fairly true.

But I’d still prefer to hang on a bit longer.

If nothing else, growing my hair a bit might help to establish more of a ‘rock star’ look, which could, in turn,  secure me that headline slot at Glastonbury for 2021.

 

 

 

James Explains ‘Common Sense’

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As lockdown restrictions ease in England, despite an apparent lack of clear guidance on…well anything much, the British government has made it clear, on multiple occasions that people should use their ‘Common Sense’.

But what it this thing they call ‘Common Sense’?

And do we all have it?

Or is it a bit like ‘The Force’ off of Star Wars?

Or is it nothing like ‘The Force’ off of Star Wars, but having spent the entirety of May watching and writing about Star Wars, I’ve started to confuse Star Wars with reality?

It’s more than possible.

But I don’t think ‘Common Sense’ is like ‘The Force’.

So we might all have it.

But, in case you’re not sure, why not try this multiple choice quiz to see if you have ‘Common Sense’?

Question 1:

You’re the Prime Minister of a country, a bit like the UK, and you hear there is a pandemic on the way. One of the key pieces of advice is that you avoid unnecessary contact with people and you wash your hands thoroughly. Do you:

a) Adhere to the guidelines and encourage others to do so?

b) Just shake hands with anyone you meet, including people who currently have COVID 19 and then brag about it to the media, before becoming the only world leader to contract the virus, which ultimately incapacitates you at a time when your country needs leadership more than ever?

 

Question 2:

You’re the Health Secretary of a country, a bit like the UK, and there isn’t enough equipment to support the frontline workers in the health service, or enough testing kits to adhere to advice about testing, as given out by the World Health Organisation. Do you:

a) Admit there is a problem and work with skilled and competent people to try and solve the problem.

b) Just lie about it and hope no-one really notices.

 

Question 3:

You’re the special adviser to the Prime Minister of a country, a bit like the UK and you’ve helped come up with the very regulations, which are guiding the country through this crisis. Do you:

a) Follow your own guidelines religiously, knowing that, during such difficult times, some people will probably only be able to follow the rules if they perceive that they really do apply to everyone.

b) Break the rules, then pretend that what you did was actually within the rules all along and if people didn’t realise that, it was their own stupid fault. Idiots!

 

Question 4:

You’ve been quite ill, and you think it might have affected your eyesight. You were about to embark on a fairly long journey, but you’re not sure if it’s really safe to drive. Do you:

a) Not drive, knowing that the only safe course of action here is to wait until you are sure that your eyesight is fine.

b) Go on a shorter, but still quite long, drive to a popular tourist attraction, with your wife and small child in the car, knowing that if you don’t have a road traffic accident on this shorter (but not actually short) drive, then you’re probably safe to attempt the much longer drive that you were worried about.

 

Question 5:

You’re the Prime Minister of a country, a bit like the UK and your special advisor has been caught breaking the rules. It’s a sensitive time, public morale is already quite low and people are understandably angry about the situation. Do you:

a) Insist on the special advisor resigning. Ultimately, even if there is some justification for his actions (and there obviously isn’t) it would be better to appease the general public and ensure that some kind of adherence to government guidance (such as it is) continues until this crisis has abated.

b) Just pretend that what he did was fine, allow him to keep his job and stick two fingers up to the public.

 

Results

If you answered mostly ‘a’ then I’m afraid you don’t have one iota of ‘Common Sense’ and you can’t be trusted to make your own decisions. So you will need to continue to follow all government advice quite rigorously. Although most of that advice appears to be to use your ‘Common Sense’. Which is going to be quite difficult for you. Probably best to just get drunk in the park with some friends until further notice.

If you answered mostly ‘b’ then you do have ‘Common Sense’ so, according to the latest government advice, you can do whatever you want. I’d recommend getting drunk in the park with some friends. What harm can come from that?

 

If you have any questions regarding any of the above then feel free to ask for clarification from someone.

Obviously not me though.

 

 

 

 

 

May The Soon Be With You

James Proclaims (4)

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Without a shadow of a doubt, life on lockdown has hit other people harder than me. I am, under the circumstances, relatively lucky. I have a job that still needs me to work (I mean the work bit is mildly irritating but in the current climate, gainful employment seems to be a definite asset), I have a small but perfectly adequate garden available to me, I live close enough to supermarkets to not worry too much about accessing supplies yet I also live close enough to a river to make my daily allocation of exercise quite tolerable (apart from the actual exercise, which has always been far more functional than fun for me).

Also I live with a very energetic toddler, so boredom has yet to really be an issue.

By far the biggest asset for me in surviving lockdown though, is that I am something of a misanthrope. Maybe not a fully-fledged misanthrope but certainly someone with misanthropic tendencies. I don’t wish any ill to befall my fellow citizens, but I’m perfectly happy to avoid them. Social gatherings have always been things to tolerate rather than enjoy and though there are a small number of people on the planet whose company I do enjoy, I am perfectly content, for the most part, with my own company. Certainly, my own company alongside the company of my wife and daughter are more than sufficient for me at the moment.

Which is not to say I don’t find the whole pandemic thing deeply distressing.  I would much prefer there not to be a life-threatening virus at large and the obvious misery, hardship and fear being experienced by people worldwide is profoundly upsetting.

And at times of difficulty, I do what any sensible person would do, and I look for comfort wherever I can find it. I have spent much of April writing about music and listening to music is something that I find can bring me a lot of solace. But times are extraordinarily bleak at the moment so I’m having to resort to the ‘big guns’.

And when I am at a point where everything has become too much for me, there really is only one recourse I can take.

And that is to watch Star Wars.

A lot.

I love Star Wars. I have always loved Star Wars. I think I probably will always love Star Wars.

But I am not, necessarily what you would call a ‘Star Wars geek’. I don’t know all there is to know about Star Wars. I haven’t, for example, read any of the associated novels or comic books. I haven’t played, nor do I intend to play, any of the associated video games.

I just really like the films. As do literally millions of other people on the planet.

They’re really popular.

Maybe I do love Star Wars more than some of those other millions of people and maybe I do know more about the movies than a lot of people. I’m not an expert, I wouldn’t purport to be an expert but when people have conversations about “who shot first?” I know exactly what they are talking about and I know that the correct answer is “Han”. But I still think that probably puts me in quite a large group of people.

‘Geek’ as a general term might be a fair description of me. I wouldn’t eschew it. I just wouldn’t want to claim that I love Star Wars more than anyone else. Because there are loads of people who love Star Wars as much as me, if not significantly more than me.

But it’s still true to say I love Star Wars.

I couldn’t tell you why I love Star Wars. I just always have. My mum tells me that, when I was a very small and difficult to please child (as opposed to the large and difficult to please adult I’ve become) she could stick me in front of Star Wars and I literally wouldn’t move for the duration of the movie. Alas, back in those days my mother was fairly reliant on Star Wars actually being shown on the telly, which tended to happen around Christmas time. For ages I thought of Star Wars as being intrinsically a Christmas thing, but these days I’m too busy watching other movies (as the very small number of people who keep reading my blog in December when I write about nothing else will be able to attest) so Star Wars has to fit in at other times of the year. And to be honest I’ve seen some of the movies so many times I have taken to restricting how often I allow myself to watch them.

But currently all bets are off, and with the recent arrival of Disney Plus in the UK (and what a timely launch that has turned out to be) I now have most of the movies and a lot of other Star Wars related stuff available without even having to go to the trouble of inserting a DVD into the player.

As a consequence, I might have, in recent days, resorted to watching a lot of the movies and associated TV shows.

When I haven’t been working or looking after my daughter obviously.

And with the month of May being around the corner, what better time is there to devote a lot of my blog to writing about Star Wars? What with people often referring to the fourth day of May as ‘Star Wars Day’. Because, very cleverly, you can say “May the Fourth be with you” on that day…

As the central set of movies (‘The Skywalker Saga’ if you will) was notionally completed last year, this year seems a particularly good time to be writing about Star Wars anyway, but with the current state of the world, and me needing to go to my happy place a lot more than normal, it’s probably all I can write about.

So once my A-Z of music is completed on Thursday, I will be mostly writing about Star Wars until I’ve exhausted every possible avenue for writing about Star Wars.

In honour of Star Wars Day, I’m going to title each of my posts in a similar fashion, starting with ‘May The First Be With You’ on Friday and so on. Which is exactly the kind of thing I would do.

I imagine I’ll run out of Star Wars stuff to write about soon enough and be back to writing about the mundanities of life, which is the content that has resulted in literally tens of people all over the world following my blog.

But until then, it’s all going to be about stuff that happened a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away…