Absinthe Makes the Heart Grow Fonder 17/06/2012

I have been away from my blog for quite some time and have to confess that upon my return my thought  is more melancholy than myrth.

The other side of a couple of glasses of red wine (Absinthe sounded good in the title but it is actually a lethal concoction that should only be drunk in extreme cases of alcohol shortage i.e. nothing else left in the cupboard) and rather a lot of time spent on your own can make one more than a little introspective.

So where have my deepest darkest thoughts led me to today? Well apart from the fact that the title statement is very true and I am in a contemplative mood because the one I love is unable to be with me, I find myself pondering the complete and utter mystery that is the psychologically imbalanced “middle class.” I use this phrase with much trepidation because of course to be politically correct, one has to recognise that we British no longer have a class system as we are, of course, all equal and afforded the same opportunities. We also know that if we are truly honest that statement is complete and utter bollocks.

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Now I have to confess, my own attempt at avoiding what I believe is termed as a double, dip recession has been to stop listening to radio four and pay no attention to TV news whatsoever. Apart from the odd re-run of  Have I got New for You and the other one with Dara O’Brian, I am completely oblivious to what is going on in the big wide world. The result  - I am crap at current affairs questions in the local village hall quiz and now truly fit into the category of “blond.”  The good news is my stress levels are considerably lower than they were when I did listen to Radio Four and I now once again believe that fairies live at the bottom of my garden.

So my cure has been denial whereas it would appear the bulk of the British population has resorted to the good old anti-depressant.

Did you know that the current population of the UK is around 62 million and that the number of people estimated to be on antidepressants is a staggering 39 million? Now maths has never been my strong point , but even I can see that this equates to nearly half the population hitting the pill bottle. This can’t be true can it?

Well to be fair yes it probably is. Allowing for the fact that I live in the middle of nowhere with a relatively low population density, I could name at least ten people I know that are on some form of prescribed mood altering drug. Is this because we live in the back of beyond and therefore have more difficult problems to deal with – no- we live in an area where the average house price is over 200k. Yes we are “Up North” and down south the house price would be double this but hey, even us northerners have our middle class psychological peccadillo’s to contend with. We want to keep up with the Jones’s just as much as the South. It doesn’t help that one of the local GP’s regardless of what symptoms you present with, offers you some form of antidepressant as a cure for whatever ails you. Hmmmm  pharmaceutical incentive bonus programmes in the rural Yorkshire Dales? Surely not.

I do as the title of my blog suggests have a propensity for airing on the cynical.

Now  please, please do not get me wrong, I am not suggesting that anti depressants do not hold a place as a very real aid to people who suffer from genuine forms of diagnosed depression, but seriously, nearly half the population! The more I see of this kind of stuff the more it makes me want to run for the hills and hide in a damp cave with a spider and a bowl of porridge. Yes things are tough, Yes life can be crap and deal you a really bum hand, but can you honestly say that when:-

  • An estimated 30,000 children die each day due to poverty–That is 18 children a minute; a child ever 3 seconds.
  • 2.6 billion people around the world do not have access to adequate sanitation and about 885 million people do not have access to clean water.
  • Every day, 4100 children die each day from severe diarrhea – as a result of poor sanitation and hygiene.
  • Approximately 600 million children live in extreme poverty.
  • Nearly 11,700 people die every day from HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria. Nearly two-thirds of these people are living in sub-Saharan Africa.
  • 67.5 million children are out of school around the world, a figure equivalent to the entire primary school-aged population in Europe and North America.

Your lot is really so bad.

Count your blessings, Say thank you for what you have got, not curse what you haven’t.

Life can be absolutely shit at times but please – Just remember your not, I hope, going to be dodging bombs in the morning or hiding from a regime that won”t let you speak your mind or practice your beliefs or trecking 4 miles for your days water.

Its all about perspective. Make room for it and you will be amazed how much happier you can be with your lot.


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