Russell, The Revolution, Bill Hicks and me.

When it comes to Russell Brand, I must confess I’m in danger of being likened to a stalker of late. I’ve become very fond of him. I’ve even dipped into my toe into the ‘Twittersphere’ with a few @rustyrockets. I thought I’d try at a few witty remarks, maybe I’d get a reply too? Maybe that’s not quite how it works. Of course he’s also busy editing magazines and touring, so I’ll let him off.


We should all take the time to think about our naivety, and in his article in the NewStateman he reflects on his earlier years: ‘I was smacked up and gacked up and togged up in the nitwit livery of late-Nineties television, a crackhead Harlequin with Hoxton hair’; that’s why I didn’t particularly like him, or rather, the image portrayed in the media, was of a person I wouldn’t really get on with. I must apologise for that assumption, as I didn’t pay much attention to him then and don’t know what he was really like. It depends on whether the Russell I have seen on Paxman and some other TV shows in the last few months, is the same old Russell or someone new?


For me, it’s taken some time to come around to a new way of thinking. No doubt I’ve been a nitwit for many years as well. No doubt I’ve done things I’m not proud of, or could have handled things better. A few months ago, I was away on a break at a hotel I used to holiday at as a child. A lady came out onto the terrace with a young chap who could have been her son. He was a big fella with a nice smile, I’m not sure if he was poorly in some way, but evidently she needed help getting him sat down in a spot with an umbrella for some shade; it was a lovely sunny day overlooking a bay. The waiters saw them to a table in the sun, failed to put the umbrella up and then left them to sort out the bill for a large table behind us. They were ignored for several minutes. I feel now that I should have at least offered to help them, and certainly spoken to the staff myself to draw attention to who should have been their priority. But at least now I have thought about it and been bothered, and will try better next time. For me, the light in the cave has only just been lit.


It’s like a series of clues have led me to this point. Coincidences perhaps? Look at the Latin and scientific usage of the word; ‘when two rays of light strike a surface at the same point in time’. So do these moments when you connect to a message of some kind help you take steps towards a new level of consciousness? Hidden amongst the multitude of crap that spews from the idiot box, there are true gems. The Queens of the Stone Age latest album is now my all time favourite album, (and I don’t say that lightly believe me). For me the music is of course incredible, but the lyrical content resonated with me and what I was doing at the time. It filled me with enthusiasm and comfort in hearing someone bring life to a way of thinking you share. It’s great when you feel that connection, and catch yourself engaging in conversation with the song, comedy act or whatever medium. No surprise a lot of performers and entertainers get so much pleasure from doing it live; they get to see the feedback and connect with so many people. Think of all those connecting rays again zapping into someone on stage as they have the audience in the palm of their hand. That must be intense.


Revolution? I don’t think so. I’m more with Bill Hicks on this one and vote for evolution. It’s just a choice. We can deal with the problems. You want to put the ‘Great’ back into ‘Great Britain’? Instead of selling guns to people, (which I believe the UK exports in the region of 12.3 billion quids worth a year?), the people involved with their manufacture, who I’m sure are some of the brightest and best, put their energy and enthusiasm into something that will actually help people? I know people will be worried about the economy, I know selling stuff and making money is important to a lot of people. Just maybe, the products they could produce and the services they could offer would sell a lot more?Let’s make it better stuff though, that uses resources wisely right? We have a good idea of what the planet’s resources are don’t we? I’m sure some clever chaps can provide is with the facts. Facts are good.


That would be a good example to set wouldn’t it? That’s the right kind of message to send to the rest of the world isn’t it? Let’s look at the pressing issues and deal with them. Get the facts, make a decision. If we don’t have enough information, then we investigate and work toward solutions together. Does anyone have all the answers, no, of course not but they have some of them and together we’ll work it out. Everyone should be free to contribute to society and live with enthusiasm, passion and love.


Get rid of the nukes seriously. For those of you who want them there as a ‘deterrent’, we’ve still got them okay? They’re in some subs in secret locations all over the world... Sure, keep the military for now but let’s put them to good use. They are strong and fit, they could help build infrastructure, they could engage with the community more. Turn our best minds and bodies to help take the steps in the right direction, and make the right choices.


We all know about the terrible problems with the Energy prices; we’re reminded of the limited options we have for sustainable power supplies. Of course that’s the message we hear I don’t know how many times a day. There are solutions to such problems though, and no doubt we get a lot better at finding more. For example, a project in Pentland Firth, Scotland will power 40% of the homes in the Highlands. That sounds like good news to me. Why don’t we build a few more? I heard something could be constructed that harnesses power, and serves as a barrier to prevent coastal erosion as well; designs exist for wind farms that could also help land erosion in places like Norfolk I believe.


The Paxman Brand interview leaves us with the question what do we do about a revolution? We don’t need to change the political system at this stage, just the people who run the country. I see the chance for us to make a choice. The Internet is enabling us to reach each other more easily; we can gather the votes. A little bit of effort, something to discuss over a pint. Spread some good ideas; think about some solutions. Could we see this happen before the next election? Why not...it could happen sooner.

 

Quite recently I became aware of a website called upworthy.com. They’ve been going 18 months and set about making important messages spread virally as much as the ones with the cute kittens do. I must have watched more than a hundred videos over a couple of days, and favourited over 35. It was an emotional experience and I recommend it. This brings me back to Russell saying “Engage that feeling”. Do that, because it empowers you. Just like him, you and I have the right to say enough is enough: ‘I’ve taken the right, I don’t need the right from you, I don’t need the right from anybody; I’m taking it’.


I’m taking it too.


I’ve changed my course and written a book to try and help others join the dots. There’s a message in it and it’s meant to be a positive one, but there’s dick jokes too; in my case however, I’m using Sci-Fi. Sure, it might be crap, after all it’s my first real go. But you know what? I’ve been happy doing it and, enthusiastic about it too. Let’s have another Latin lesson shall we? Enthusiasm comes from the Latin words En Theos, which means - the God Within. Bill Hicks said of this, “In other words, do what excites you, for that excitement is God telling you ‘we’re on the right path, and we are together and isn’t it&nbsp fun!’ And it has been fun for these last few years, and it’s getting more fun everyday”. I’m feeling the same. My hope is that we can bring change, so that everyone gets the chance, after all, we are all one. If you haven’t listened to Bill much, I really recommend you do. Give him a chance like you would a new song recommend by a friend, with several listenings. For me it only took two minutes...


Coincidentally, the title of my book is also in Latin: “Veritas Liberabit Vos”, which means ‘Truth Shall Set You Free’. Part One is Free, Part Two just 1. You see everything I’ve written above is just a marketing ploy, I’m going for the ‘anti-marketing’ dollar and the ‘plea for sanity’ dollar aren’t I Bill? Thanks for planting those seeds. They are coming to fruition.

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