The Joy of Littleness and Goats


Here’s the story of photos, adrenaline, and karaoke.

I honestly believe holding on to a goat’s tail being dragged around a mud bath is far more enjoyable than jumping out of a plane at 20,000 feet. People travel so very far with so very much money to get the best of life, the best of thrills and the best of adrenaline, when in actual fact, joy begins at home. Although I’ve never jumped out of a plane, I’d imagine I’d spend the entire journey down screaming and the entire journey up vomiting, since I have a fear of heights and planes and lunatics pushing me out of planes. However, I have been dragged around a mud bath by a goat. It’s a long story, readers. I was four, I was visiting a farm, there was a petting area, I wouldn’t let go of the goat’s tail, it bolted, sending me on an epic voyage of dignity shredding and memory scarring. There is a photo of this incident lying around somewhere in the attic, but I won’t post it because it’s painful to look at. It’s one of these embarrassing things your parents photograph rather than actually offering to help. You know, like that time you fell asleep naked on the toilet aged three. A photo your mum then shows to your girlfriend, sparking a ten minute conversation about your doodle. This all hypothetical, of course, mother has never shown any embarrassing picture of me to a girlfriend of mine. Although there is a photo of a three-year-old me asleep and naked on a toilet. It’s actually worse than you think…

Being three, I was little. I could’ve fallen in that toilet! I could’ve drowned! Fair enough these days. Oh, where’s my digital camera? Oh, where’s my camera mobile telephone? A quick pic, it’ll only take a second, then I’ll help. Humanity has acknowledged this. You can’t expect somebody to put down their frickin’ phone and come to help. Oh no, they want a picture of the poor soul who got his foot stuck in a drain. And, erm, yes, that also happened to me. Thankfully, there’s no photo of that, and that’s because it was the olden days. When mum found me asleep on the toilet, she had to go downstairs, find some film, put it in the camera, wind it up, reset the clicky thingamajig, wait for it to warm up, go back upstairs, look through a thing we call a viewfinder, take a snap, wait for it to process, and then wind it on so she could take another one. Then it’s a simple job of getting in the car, driving to the town centre, paying for a one hour stay at the car park, walking to a developer store, handing in the film to be developed, and then driving back home. All before she could even think about attending to her poor child! I mean, come on!

Parents didn’t worry as much in the olden days. “Mama, I dropped me sthpoon and wits all dirtee – can I have a new sthpoon, pwease?” “No.” “But the germs – I get a bad tum-tum.” “Ah well, it’ll toughen you up.” We’re far too gentle with children, these days. But you can’t go back. Give a child a dirty spoon these days and you’ll never see that child ever again. On the plus side, if illness ever befell me, the hospital was on the way to the developer store…

I grew up fine. You learn to love the little things. Take mother and I this week. Out shopping together, and she wanted to buy a card. I don’t know about the rest of the world, but in British card stores, they have what I like to call an ‘adult section’. Full of the rudest, funniest, most childish un-PC stiff imaginable. It’s a wonderful call-back to the olden days when you could get away with saying stuff that’s really hardly offensive at all. Only ‘offensive’ if one is of an ultra-sensitive nature. Mother and I spent half an hour in this adult section howling with uproarious laughter. The entire shop was staring at us, and we didn’t care. We do it all the time. If you want to spend thousands of pounds going to Fiji to jump out of a plane or swim with sharks, be my guest. But I’d rather go and read the funnies in the card shop with mother, surrounding by concerned staff looking in the Yellow Pages for the nearest asylum.

It’s the little things in life that lead to the biggest of joys. Think about the greatest moments of your life, I guarantee the times you laughed the hardest were spent doing mundane things. A terrible charade at Christmas. Your 76-year-old tattoo covered granddad taking his top off at your parents wedding reception and dancing for three hours straight until two in the morning. Which, yes, my granddad actually did. And I do have a photo of that, but I won’t show you that and instead will let him rest in peace. Bless him. And the card shop is one of those moments for me. I feel sorry for adrenaline junkies. I will look back in life at that moment this week with great fondness and a huge smile, but I wouldn’t if I swam with sharks this week, instead. All I’d remember then is that time I went all the way to Fiji to publicly crap myself.

Joy begins at home.

I remember sneaking on to the local golf course with some acquaintances and an airhorn when I was young and stupid. Not like now. Now, I’m old and stupid. Or the time a jaunt around the town centre with acquaintances in a car with the windows down, our hoods up, heavy speed metal blasting out speakers turned up to 11, head-banging into oblivion. Or that time when I was younger and the Christmas Tree fell on me whilst I was putting it up. I was home alone. It weighed a ton. I was trapped for hours in a plastic hell. My foot was stuck, I couldn’t free it. So I just lay there for a few hours laughing nonstop. Or even that time I set fire-proof oven gloves on fire.

I went to the dentist this week. I’ve had the same dentist since I was three. That makes me happy. Not that the dentist is a happy place. I mean, for a start, they’ve removed the magic eye poster they had on the ceiling. Now it’s just a bright fluorescent light. It’s like death is coming. It’s a rickety old place, completely worthless, but not to me. I lay there having my teeth scraped, a sound incredibly wince-inducing and only surpassed in wince-factor by seeing me do naked karaoke. I thought a lot. I thought about this year. 2014. What an awful year. It’s now more than ever we need to cling on to these little moments of joy we have. People can skydive all they want, but the best moments in life are free. Joy begins at home and it always will do.

Oh, and ‘naked karaoke’ was another thought I had whilst lying on that table. I don’t know how I come up with these things. Or why. It’s not important, really. Although if it becomes a real thing, we must ban from being sung and performed, ‘The Hokey-Cokey’. Not because it’s a bad tune, but because I’m dreading what’ll happen when we arrive at ‘in out, shake it all about’…

American writer, poet and cartoonist, Theodor ‘Dr. Seuss’ Geisel (1904-1991) once said, “Don’t cry because it’s over, smile because it happened.”

Peace Out :|:

I’d love to hear your thoughts on this post. You can leave a comment and/or like this post below, or by clicking the title on the top of this post if you are on the archives page. Likes and follows greatly appreciated. Thanks.

Please feel free check out the latest posts from my other two blogs:

To Contrive & Jive
New Posts Every Monday, Wednesday and Friday
Click Here to Read the Latest Post

Hark Around the Words
New Posts Every Monday, Wednesday and Friday
Click Here to Read the Latest Post


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