Faces are here to be looked at. Even better – to be smiled at.
That might seem like stating the obvious, but so often people avoid face to face contact.
On public transport or in crowds people avert their eyes or look down. Anything but make eye contact.
(Oi cheeky! They’re not just trying to avoid making eye contact with me either. It’s everyone.)
When I was a boy in Belfast, catching the eye of a stranger was tantamount to challenging them to a fight. Ever been asked the question: “What are you lookin’ at?” It’s not a good start to a conversation Continue reading →
It’s time for three complex conundrums and three handy solutions.
Question One: You’re playing in the golf club championship tournament finals and the match is even at the end of 17 holes. You tee off first and hit your ball a modest 250 yards to the middle of the fairway, leaving a simple six iron to the pin.
Your opponent then hits his ball, lofting it deep into the woods to the right of the fairway. Being the golfing lady or gentleman that you are, you help your opponent look for his ball. Just before the permitted five minute search period ends, your opponent says, “Go ahead and hit your second shot and if I don’t find it in time, I’ll concede the match.”
You hit your ball, landing it on the green, stopping about ten feet from the pin. About the time your ball comes to rest, you hear your opponent exclaim from deep in the woods: “I found it!”
The second sound you hear is the sound of a club striking a ball. The ball comes sailing out of the woods and lands on the green, stopping no more than six inches from the hole.
You put your hand in your pocket, where you have your opponent’s ball. Now what?
Question Two: Why do they lock gas station bathrooms? Are they afraid someone will clean them? (Doesn’t apply in European petrol stations which are always pristine. Aren’t they?)
Trish Keenan died last month. She was the singer from UK electronic band band Broadcast.
My mate Mark introduced me to their music.
Their song Come On Let’s Go offers a wealth of good advice for social occasions:
1. You won’t find it by yourself – you’re gonna need some help.
2. Stop looking for answers in everyone’s face.
3. (At a busy loud party.) What’s the point in wasting time on people that you’ll never know. Come on let’s go.
Just listening again to the lyrics, like many Van Morrison love songs, you could imagine that they’re addressed to God.
And speaking of looking for answers in other people’s faces…
Here’s a face in a million. It’s made from almost 10,000 pieces of toast. A back-breakingly prepared birthday surprise which is apparently recognised by the Guinness Book of Records, (beating the previous record-holding school in the Netherlands).
Laura Hadland from Leicester decided to mark her mother-in-law Sandra Whitfield’s 50th birthday with this toast mosaic.
It took 600 loaves of bread, 50 people, 128.05 square metres, 9,852 slices of toast (dark, medium & light) and seven hours of toasting and sticking down.
The birthday girl’s verdict? “I love toast, but it was a massive shock seeing my face made out of it.” (You can get the full story Pick Me Up Magazine – essential reading.)
Blackwatertown - the blog & the book - are by Paul Waters. (So is The Obituarist.) I present a podcast & radio show called We'd Like A Word with Stevyn Colgan. It's about books, authors, publishers, readers, editors, agents, illustrators, poets, script writers & lyricists. The podcast is at https://anchor.fm/wed-like-a-word or wherever you get your podcasts. And the website is www.wedlikeaword.com or on social media @wedlikeaword
I also make other radio, TV & podcasts. Leave a comment or email me at paulwaters99 at hotmail.com Thanks for reading. Paul