the internet reality.

I read a couple of books recently with a similar theme. The novel “the circle” by Dave Eggers, a kind of internet-modern age 1984. Although I would have written a far happier and satisfying tale, it was brilliant but really scared me. It’s about the end of everything that matters, a world where you can only vote with a facebook account, all kids have chips put in them at birth to prevent child abductions and hidden tiny cameras eliminate crime. So there’s no privacy left anymore. Everything must be shared. The other book was not a fantasy, but a reality “the internet is not the answer” a clued up book written by a Andrew Keen. a Silicon Valley insider and journalist about how the internet is, in a nut shell, making us all unhappy while a few privileged billionaires profit and robots and drones take over all services. Oh and it’s turning us into idiots too and changing our memory and sense of time. Ho-hum

So not exactly happy tales, and certainly not the kind of thing I usually read, but it certainly got me thinking about the state of this little world we share (far too much).

Tomorrow morning I’m going on holiday. We’re staying at a hotel, then we’re off on a boat for adventures. I don’t particularly want everyone to know where I’m going, what I’m doing. I don’t want to share a photo of my kids and I having fun at the beach. Does that make me selfish? It’s important to just experience moments in time with those around you and to reflect on your own existence without posting about it on social media hoping to get a few likes and comments to prove your own reality. I’m not judging, I do it too, but reading Eggers and Keen I realize it really can’t be all that healthy.

It’s what I’ve always loved about writing poems. Everything I write is about myself, relationships in my life (yawn yawn), but I try to do it in a way that doesn’t make sense to anyone else. I’m in love with the mystery I guess, and it seems these days mystery is becoming a dirty word. What and why are you hiding?

So, those are powerful books. I’d really recommend them, but probably not at the same time unless you want to get freaked out. My summer reading now is “my salinger year”, and I’ll be listening a lot to this little punk band you can watch below. More fun soon.


why we need political punk more than ever

So, I went along to this little demonstration on Saturday in London. I mean little if you count 250,000 people there protesting against the cuts the British conservative government are doing. The most moving part I thought was when the lady from the Disability rights movement did a speech which you can check out here

So music magazines are asking why Refused bother to reform after they made the perfect punk rock album the shape of punk to come back in the 1990’s, and most critics give the new album fairly average reviews. Critics wonder what the point of Connor Oberst’s punk band Desaparecidos who reformed after 13 years when Connor is best suited to sweet soft lullabies and that the political messages get a little tiresome after 13 songs. They say ok Connor, we get you’re angry, but can’t you just give it a break yelling at us about it…

A few things to note here. First both bands are frankly, needed more in 2015 than back in the 90’s when all the kids like me read Naomi Klien’s “no logo” and we talked all night at the laundrette talking about the dangers of globalisation. In a way it seems innocent to break a Starbucks window now. In 2015 things are so much fucking worse. Globalisation has been swallowed by the sheer dominance of a few select running the world. Corporations, like Facebook and Google, are in control of things these days. We’ve still got things to fight against like wars, and to demand human rights, justice for all and equality. The gap between rich and poor keeps growing according to BBC news.

So, that’s why I am so so happy to have new records by these bands. Desaparecidos I absolutely adore, and their “read music/speak Spanish” record is still one that I go back to again and again. Both bands are also signed to Epitah records. Here’s them performing their new song “City on the hill” on some American chat show. Play it loud.