It’s impossible not to be stunned into utter disbelief and horror that a child of 15 can commit a cold blooded, pre-meditated murder of a trusted figurehead in front of other children but, yet again, we see that it can happen. It has happened before and will no doubt happen again. Where has childhood gone? When did violence, anger, disrespect and lack of compassion become so easy for a child to manifest? It chills me to the bone to think that there are children going to bed at night with feelings of hatred and the desire to kill. Where did that come from? Was it always thus? What has happened to innocence? Read More
I have a book to write – well, I have a book to finish. I started writing it years ago and have always seemed to find some excuse not to continue writing it. I’m a good quarter of the way through it but the problem is having left it so many years untouched I am finding that I am a totally different person to the one who started writing it. It’s hard reading stuff that I wrote well over 5 years or more ago without wanting to scrap it and start all over. With over 30,000 words written it might be hard to do… Read More
As a near full-time badminton coach I hear excuses that come in an ever-widening range of shapes and sizes and some of them come from me too, at times when things get tough! There is always, almost without fail, some excuse for not achieving our full potential in badminton (or any sport or life choice) – whether it was a simple shot we didn’t get to because in our excuse-making mind the opposition was always going to win that point so it wasn’t worth the effort or a massive excuse for not pushing for a massive dream, e.g. I’ll never play for England because I’m not good enough/I started playing too late/I don’t train in a club in Milton Keynes/everyone else is better than me! Read More
One day a young boy was out walking in the other side of town with his Mum when he saw an immensely tall tree that was so high that it went way above the clouds. The tree was the most beautiful tree he had ever seen but it was in a very dirty and old part of town where little else grew. What surprised him and excited him most about this tree was that from about 20 feet up in the branches there appeared to be what looked like a bronze coloured disc. When he looked closer he could see a few more a little further up. As he craned his neck to look further up the tree he could see even more discs – there were many of them in fact – that were firstly a mixture of bronze and silver colour and then one or two gold coloured ones became visible. The boy stood with his mouth open and his eyes wider still. At the top of the tree were huge big golden discs. Lots of them! He could hardly believe what he was seeing. Read More
Rarely a day goes by when my mind is not mulling over a number of issues that affect not only me, my family, the young badminton players that I coach, our country, our society, our values and, most importantly (in my mind) our planet earth and the way we treat it. People don’t have time to talk about these things anymore, unless they are involved with any kind of activist group or maybe over a pint or two. They will listen to the news, maybe read a Facebook/Twitter post or be affected themselves by something or other and to me, it almost stops there as our general attitude to living these days is “well, there’s nothing I can do about it…” and so things continue to slide or stagnate.
Of course, I’m not suggesting that I do much about it, either, but I know that I will go mad if I can’t at least articulate and ‘put out there’ some of the things I believe in, or think about. I know that others think in the same way but change needs to happen in our lifetime to the way we all behave – whether it’s the way we eat, the way we consume everything generally and the way we interact with our families, our society and nature. Our dependencies on everything that is superficial, artificial or downright poisonous is laughable if it weren’t so seemingly irredeemable.
But believe it or not, I’m not a misery, a sentimentalist or a doom-laden prophet! I love the idea of hope and change and giving. I believe we all are capable of immense and wonderful things and we only have to recognise this to make any changes that are needed in our lives – whether for our own good or the greater good. So I don’t ask forgiveness for sharing my thoughts with the world – whether they get lost in the ether or whether they are read by one or a million – as I write with the love of our planet and mankind at my core.