Sunday, 29 November 2009

Keep Calm

"keep calm and carry on"

i immediately felt better. i did some research and found out that in 1939 the British Government's Ministry of Information commissioned a series of propaganda posters to be displayed throughout the country upon the outbreak of war, yet the sign i read was in Melbourne and this was 2009. this particular poster was never issued and was never seen by the general public.

its possible a person called Mark Coop is responsible for this posters revival and the message has found its way to the other side of the world. impressive.

to face adversity is nothing new. a sign, a helping hand, a smile, such little things can make a huge difference. i'm back in England now, it's raining and it's dark in the middle of the day, at home i look at my copy of the sign and i'm reminded of the people who came before me and how much of life is not about what we face each day, but about how we face those challenges. with the right attitude there's very little that can't be done.

Mark Coop is selling high quality screen prints of this sign from his site online.

click on the post title to visit the online shop or click here

Thursday, 26 November 2009


Danger at breakfast, time travelling with a salmon and cream cheese wrap. in the desert with my dessert. the grass ain't green cos there ain't none. air-con suits my cheesecake just fine, half way there where the sun shines. late but arriving early.

Wednesday, 25 November 2009


yeah i'd like a light fruity red please. i'm sold a 14% wine for £10 that's as weak and delicate as a pit-bull terrier.

it goes without saying the 3 months i have spent in Melbourne are not enough to discover the scene there is here. there are some great restaurants, cafes, bars and shops, but how is that different from any other cultural capital? for me it isn't. being from Yorkshire and living in Melbourne was like living a long way away from home without being anywhere different. Melbourne has some cutting edge things but nothing truly amazing, except the public transport system and screw-top beer bottles although the actual beer in the bottles is terrible and alcohol everywhere is extremely expensive, think upwards of £6 a pint.

so in a few hours i take a long flight back home. England... well... it's cold and wet, but the water is good, the alcohol is cheap and the internet is fast. so when it's been a cold wet day i go home, have a cup of tea or a beer from anywhere in Europe for a £1 and feel a bit better about everything. i can eat the best meat and vegetables. i can listen to the best music on the best sound systems in the world. i can switch the radio off when bob dylan starts his radio 2 show, then switch on my computer and use the internet at a speed that doesn't make me think it's 1999.

if nothing else, every 10,000 miles i travel i like to think i learn another lesson. maybe this one is that i should start going on holiday instead of trying to leave the country.

Friday, 20 November 2009

Tuesday, 17 November 2009

Never Back Down

'Never Back Down' was a film released last year that i just finished watching. i would summarise the film as 'Karate Kid for a fast food generation' ie a little less Japanese philosophy and a little more fighting. the film isn't groundbreaking, and at times it's so corny that it's difficult to watch. so, this should beg the question as to why i'm writing about it at all. well i am because in the film are questions raised that we all face in life at one time or another and in one form or another and in this film in the end they get the message right.

as you may know big questions are a big interest for me and so are martial arts. in my opinion such things are only interesting in movies as a theme if they address the question 'why learn martial arts?' and ultimately answer or offer insight regarding their true philosophy. From my limited understanding and what i hope is the attitude for the major martial arts worldwide is that to learn martial arts is to learn something with fundamental benevolence. to learn how to better oneself and to become a stronger and healthier person for the greater good and a better world. as you may know this is also a big interest for me.

you may ask "how can studying about fighting benefit the world?"

well my answer is: "if we purge the fear of each other from our minds we gain a better understanding of ourselves. we can calm our aggression, deflate our egos and move closer to the true nature of the self. with an attitude that violence is weak, martial arts give us the means with which to fight evil and injustice, but the direction to avoid fighting each other"

'martial arts' and 'martial sports' are two different things:
martial sports are the things that are broadcast on the television and taught at your local fitness gym for fitness. martial sports are in my opinion an attempt to make clear the distinction that these are things learnt for health of the body rather than lethal killing techniques, while often martial sport ends up being an ironic contradiction as the popularised violence that is sold to us and broadcast into our living rooms.

our abilities to talk and reason with each other are our most special and sadly most under appreciated qualities as human beings. in becoming strong, we lessen the need to fight, increase our ability to see strength and merit in others and encourage opportunities for real peace and prosperity. as 'to make an enemy a friend is to vanquish the powers of destruction'

in case you didn't get all that from the film 'Never back Down' i thought i would write it all down :) +

Sunday, 15 November 2009

Tuesday, 10 November 2009


It's surprisingly easy to describe the sensation of dropping in the bowl at Epping skatepark: find a rather high first floor balcony
then fall off it.
As you might imagine, having some wheels on a piece of wood under your feet isn't exactly comforting if you find out you survived the fall and are now facing a concrete wall known only to spectators as the other side of the ramp.
i would have complained if i wasn't too busy trying to wipe the smile off my face.

Sunday, 8 November 2009


bluntslide. photo by Chris Kehoe

Saturday, 7 November 2009

Roc Raida

He was a true pioneer and a humble genius. Anthony Williams b.k.a Grandmaster Roc Raida (May 18, 1972- September 19, 2009)

Sunday, 1 November 2009

Join the Dots

i've been a fan of the Nextmen for a while now. their latest album 'Join The Dots' was released recently. unlike any other they beautifully blend beats and styles to create a truly exciting and eclectic album.
if you haven't got it, get it.

Rock Ling

it's a deep sea fish called Rock Ling, sometimes the fish can be over 50 years old. it's good.