Welcome back to my regular series with suggestions of awesome people and things to check out, read, participate in and follow. Today I offer you a heartwarming sight, some of my favourite things and some good news about this generally crappy year.
To begin, I’m breaking one of my Sunday Suggestions rules. I aim to only share web-based items that are openly accessible to everyone, everywhere, but this little gem was too good to not give a shout out too: Project Calm is a new magazine that looks great & seems to offer great contents too (the always brilliant Susannah Conway has a column in it so it can’t be bad). I’ve just ordered my copy to try it out.
Some of you may have caught Tuesday night’s Channel 4 documentary Breaking the Silence which showed deaf people hearing for the first time after having cochlear implants fitted. It was a really moving programme that had my partner & I marveling at the wonders of modern technology. I’m not sure that the option to watch the show will work for people outside the UK so as well as signposting to that, I wanted to link to an older article from Stylist magazine on the same subject. This article includes a video of a woman’s first experience hearing & details a playlist that her friend made her for when she heard music for the first time. Hearing music for the first time! How unimaginable that is for most of us.
So, for three of my favourite things. First up is a beautiful tribute to one of my top tunes, ‘Love and Affection’ by Joan Armatrading. The most well-known of all her hits, this brooding love song just exudes sex and passion in a way that we don’t often encounter in songs by women (or alas in society more widely still). In ‘No conversation. No wave goodnight. A love letter to the lyrics of Love And Affection by Joan Armatrading‘, Phil Adams on ‘A Longing Look’ evokes some of its majesty and glory. Read it & listen at the end!
Second is totally different. It is a little known fact that I am a pretty big football (soccer) fan. In particular, I love listening to football on the radio. I love the hazy tone of my old transistor radio & the way it evokes a happy Saturday afternoon curled up on my bed or the sofa listening to the commentary and punditry and summaries. The magic of football on the radio is delicately captured in this Guardian article on the subject. I’d go as far to say it’s worth a read even if the subject itself doesn’t interest you but maybe I’m not a good judge of that.
The third I just wanted to tuck in here as my own expression of thanks and gratitude. Last weekend I went on an amazing, sumptuous and powerful retreat with fourteen other women in the Cotswolds countryside. It was truly life-changing. Here the retreat leader Sas Petherick (one of my favourite people in the world) talks about her experience of organising the event and what it means to her (I’m one of the ones who’s already signed up for next year).
I’m a newcomer to the joyous Yes and Yes blog (‘Because Yes is More Fun than No’) but I love it enough to have signed up to the mailing list – a big commitment, because we only sign up to the mailing list for blogs we love, right? 😉 Anyhow, this post on 11 Ways to Practice Gratitude Without a Gratitude Journal is fun and captures what I like about the site so much. (I think I previously suggested the Yes and Yes ’19 Ways To Make The World A (Slightly) Better Place‘ post; if you missed it the first time or fancy a re-read, this one is also worth checking out).
On Thursday I wrote a blog post about why this year – universally acknowledged as pretty crap – may not be quite so bad after all. Among the doom and gloom, of which there is plenty, there are also some moments of light and goodness, both personally and on a bigger scale. You can read the post here, including the contributions from friends and readers about what made 2016 great for them. It was also good to see another similar list by Dominic Upton for the Daily Telegraph list recently. His contains some examples that had totally slipped my mind; which of these did you relish?
And finally, because I’ve realised I like to end this post with a funny video, I have this little blast from the past for you…When The Fully Monty came up in conversation twice on Wednesday night, I knew I had to go with this classic scene of the men in the dole queue. It’s hard to watch it and not twitch along with them!
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