Pretty festive for an Ebeneza

Anyone who knows me at all is well aware of my hatred of Christmas, but actually that’s not quite accurate. What I hate, even despise, is the consumerist nonsense that goes on around it. I simply cannot bear the fight to go shopping for normal foodstuffs for the entire month of December. The impossibility of parking. The shops full to overflowing with crap no one wants but will probably get because people can’t be bothered to make the effort to think what someone might actually want or need, and which will be shoved to the back of a cupboard, after a polite and gushing but totally inauthentic appreciation of said gift. I cannot stand the jolly revellers who get blind drunk in order to forget how miserable they really are, who may well kiss or even have sex with those they complain about for the rest of the year. The traditions which really aren’t, the apparent obligation to follow a whole set of nonsensical rules and rituals or be considered a miserable killjoy, whilst it being quite clear most of those doing it can’t actually stand either what they have to do or many of the people they end up doing it with. The debt people feel obliged to get into to be found acceptable, though to whom it’s hard to tell. Big business mainly.

So the fact I’m having three Christmasses might seem a little odd to the casual observer. I’ve already had one, and it was lovely. My older daughter and I, doing the sort of things that make it a loving and pleasing thing. Sharing a cosy day, cooking for each other and sharing a meal, opening the gifts we’ve lovingly chosen for one another and which we both love because they make clear how well we know each other, and watching crap on TV (there’s always crap on TV, whatever the time of year) in front of a roaring fire. Lovely.

I have another one on Thursday which will be similar but quite different, and then yet another one on the official day istelf. I’m looking forward to them. This is what it’s really all about to me. The rest of it can go to Hell.

 

When the lights go out

It’s quite a curious time for me anyway, for reasons I’m not going to go into. However, I’ve been acutely aware of how very attached and probably addicted most of us are to screens of one sort or another. Whether interactive or no they seem to provide a background to our lives, a security, an alleviation of boredom or of being alone, even if we aren’t, and even if they create much of that boredom by allowing us to imagine we’re occupied and doing something useful. So when I was plunged into darkness yesterday due to a powercut it reminded me again of that fact. I had a roaring fire and several different forms of light which weren’t entirely satisfactory in terms what we’re used to at night, but enabled me to function in a reasonably normal way. I still had the means to cook, and obviously with the fire, to keep warm, so in many ways my life for those few hours mimicked that of the people who had lived here over the past centuries. What to do? Not bright enough to read without ending up with a real headache. I cooked and ate, then decided to do a drawing. I have absolutely no idea why this subject matter came to mind. A bubble blowing dragon isn’t normally something I’d imagine or want to depict. Perhaps it was a return to more innocent times, or that I’m reminded of the powerful connections and imagery motherhood brings right now, but the dark brought me this:

Then the lights came on again and I had my screens, filled with people bemoaning the fact they existed and insisting ife was nothing but horror and suffering. I was tempted to turn those damn screens off again. I certainly need to be more selective in what allow them to stream into my brain.

Spume and advice needed

There are two reasons for making this post. Firstly to share a trip out with my companion so he can see and have a small reminder of it, and second to ask advice about a good camera for video making. I know this video is dreadful quality wise in all sorts of ways so it’s just to give an impression, but it finally brought my frustrations about having a decent camera I can make videos with to a head . I may not be able to get it immediately but I know now it’s something I want and need. The two cameras I have are basically to take photos with an additional facility to shoot videos, so the emphasis on photos means what I can and can’t do with them is very limited when it comes to videos. I’d really value some advice on what sort of camera would be a good idea purely for videos. I want a quality one but not something massive I’d have trouble lugging about because I like to be spontaneous and anyway it wouldn’t suit me. I don’t want to spend an absolute fortune but I do what something which will give me the quality I want. Any ideas?