Facilitate

The same thing that could make it easy for one person could make it harder for another. In a couple for example, you could facilitate your partner’s career, but it might be at the expense of sacrifices you have to make, or your family have to make. There is a push and pull in life. We must somehow find a balance!

The morals of artists/actors accepting certain jobs/gigs… should I do it?

We’ve all heard of the big pop stars who go and play for big money for dodgy dictators. But what about those little moral quandaries minor artists face all the time… should I take part in a suspect production where the motivations are murky… but I need the money, I’m a hard-up artist!

I see these trashy channels on cable or freeview where they show non-stop “real crime” dramas and documentaries. It’s basically voyeurism, titillation and exploitation, and there seems to be a system where recent prominent media murders are soon promptly processed into this format to make a quick buck. Now imagine you’re an actor who never wants to turn down work because you have bills like everyone else. So let’s say you’re offered £1000 to do a voiceover of a particular real crime format – perhaps a day’s work – are you going to turn it down?

We are obsessed by symbols rather than reality

People up in arms about Gary Barlow using confetti at a concert at the Eden Project… silly really, so it would be ok if it was scattered 5 miles down the road instead?

It’s the same with people being disgusted rich people live in luxury in poor countries. As if somehow it’s not so immoral for the rich to live in developed countries – like it’s magically unlinked from poverty in developing countries.

Working for the CV

If you have to pay for childcare, your day’s work (when tax taken off) pretty much just pays for that. So in effect, you’re working to be able to say in the future on the CV that you worked. Because as we all know, the classic recruiter’s line is, “Why is there this gap in your CV? What WERE you doing?”

Jazz Swing in films and cartoons

Thinking about how swing jazz is used in films and cartoons to create an atmosphere. Sometimes it’s used to create a “cool vibe” and sometimes to make things seem light and not too intense… more jolly!
Shows that come to mind: Charlie Brown, Frasier, Everybody Loves Raymond, Garfield, Twin Peaks (interesting one!), Pink Panther, George Shrinks…

Emotional Response

I see on an online newspaper two headlines: Earthquake on other side of the world… Minor celebrity injured in a car crash… Which do I click?

I get two letters in the post, one from a charity asking for a small amount of money to help people in extreme poverty… or an attractive little brochure from a local supermarket with free recipes to brighten up your summer kitchen ideas… which letter do I open?

In both of the above cases, the least serious and more peripheral is the one I’m more likely to open. Why? Because we want to be happy… and we want to relate to an individual perspective, because we are individuals…

Plastic

With the aim of trying to reduce consumption of plastic it is of course a good thing that supermarkets are now charging for plastic bags.

But if we just take one example of the use of plastic in other ways, we see we really need a big U turn to change things. Children’s toys.

It seems today’s children’s toys are almost exclusively plastic. You can see why – you can make colourful, cheaply made toys which also don’t rust so it’s no problem for them to slosh about in the bath. Toy companies must also be under pressure to create fresh new exciting products, and I’m sure they’ll take a lot of convincing not to use plastic.

And what will be the environmental impact when we get even more creative with plastic when we all start 3D printing?

Attach meaning to music

The older we get and the more we play improvised, instrumental music, we tend to attribute meaning to it, almost spiritually. I’m focussing here on instrumental because vocal music is different in the sense we can easily attach meaning by thinking about the lyrics of the song.

To be discussed: Pat Metheny, John Coltrane, Salif Keita, Youssou NDour, Baaba Maal

Indian musicians… religious or spiritual meaning…

Daniel Barenboim

Some might even call it “faux spirituality”, to attribute a deep meaning and truth to life from some patterns of frequencies