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Thoughts of a 12 Year Old Hoobs

23 years ago Tim Burton released the original Batman movie.

This would normally be in my movie blog but bear with me as I have a higher purpose here.

I can fondly remember the iconic poster and visiting Sleaford Cinema with my good friend Dave.

From the opening titles of the camera moving slowly through the stone bat symbol through to the ending showdown on top of the cathedral I was completely mesmerised.

Yes it has since been bettered but the memory of this film triggered something in my head the other day.

I left that cinema with an idea in my head that I could easily become Batman and clean up the mean streets of the rural market town where I grew up.

I was obviously wrong. I was a pudgy 12 year old and, perhaps more importantly did not have the millions of dollars and super villains to fight. So that was one dream I forgot about.

The thing is,I still get these mad ideas today but can clearly decide which ones to act on and which ones are not going to work.

I came out of the latest Mission Impossible movie thinking how great it would be to be a spy but did not act on it.

On the other side of the coin I have been watching shows like Grand Designs for the last 10 years and always thought ‘I could do that’ and have now started small by making furniture on my carpentry course.

So my new way of making the right decision will be watching an edited TV show or glamourised Hollywood version of reality to kick start my brain.

With the right film or I can achieve anything. Ideas please my followers. Give me some inspirational motivational brain fodder…

The Perils of Old Wheels

Driving is fun isn’t it? Three car journeys in and I am rapidly realising that it’s a tough old task.

It’s still liberating and fun but having an old car makes it a totally different experience. Thankfully I have a very patient wife who, despite my ranting when I can’t get the clutch to work, knows the foibles of our car “lucky” to give her her full name like the back of her hand.

The key to building confidence is getting out on my own and working out the foibles for myself.

Either that or get a newer car but I am always up for a challenge and won’t be defeated.

The Art of Complaining and the Dovetail Joint

I love a good complaint. Thanks to some bad packaging, part of our new wardrobe was damaged when it was delivered today so I was straight on the phone and managed to get a 20 quid discount as a goodwill gesture.If you don’t ask, you don’t get, and as long as you are polite you can generally get something.

Aside from complaining, as part of my ongoing planning and doing thing, I have just booked myself onto a 12 week Basic Carpentry and Joinery course at the local college as I have been wanting to do something like that for ages and now that I have a driving license it’ll be easier to get there!

I am actually really excited about it as I am always planning to make things but, thanks to an oversubscribed CDT GCSE course back in 1991 and a bit of being thrown out of the class room (it wasn’t me, honest guv) I never really got to grips with the art form that is the dovetail joint.

Hopefully, if all goes to plan and I don’t saw any fingers off, I could be making my own wardrobes by the end of the year and charging other people to take them off my hands.

And I won’t drop them on the way into the house.

The Importance of Being Driven

So as of last week I have a list in place of things to do in my life.

One of those listed items was to pass my driving test which I can happily say I did yesterday.

I first learned to drive when I was 17 in a bid to impress my friends (and girls) at school. I miserably failed three tests at that time, each one more calamitously than the last.

University and a city lifestyle then caused me to abandon that quest and it wasn’t until last year that I properly picked it up again culminating in my success yesterday morning.

Part of me wishes my dad had seen me do this as he would have been so proud. He saw driving as more than just getting from A to B and seemed to really enjoy the experience. He had loads of old tools and things from his 40 odd years of driving and he and my mum with her maps made the ultimate driving team. They never had need for st navs. My mum still doesn’t having relinquished her Tom Tom and moved back to good old Ordnance Survey this year.

Before passing, even when learning, I could not see a reason for driving for fun. Now that I can legally go out on my own with no instruction I can see endless possibilities.

The first is that I could go out, put on any CD that I want and have some solitude in the driving seat. I have never been in the position where I could be the music controller before. I have been a pretender to the throne but now, to hold that lofty power in my hand, there is a whole world of musical options that no one else can argue with.

The second thing that has happened is that I now, weirdly, see cars and roads in a different light. In the same way that Keanu suddenly understood The Matrix (in the good first film, not the crappy sequels), I can now see journeys and junctions, traffic lights and tunnels as something to enjoy.

I have yet to make that maiden solo voyage as I am will getting used to the foibles of our lovely old car but rest assured, as soon as I do, I’ll be blathering about it on here.

What does it all boil down to?

Predictably I didn’t keep up with my blog, didn’t review any movies, and generally went back to the norm.

I have done a couple of things here and there but, when I think about it, my kind keeps telling me “you’ve just not had enough time”.

So that has me thinking, when pushed for time I can really pull it together and deliver on things. I’m great working to a deadline, brilliant when things are planned out by me or for me, and meticulous when planning trips and needing to be somewhere.

So, being a lover of list making, especially ones made by my ever fantastic wife, I decided to think about what makes up an average week in the Hoobs’ household.

When you write it down on a standard sheet of lined A4 paper and it doesn’t even come to half a page then it is clear barriers are being put in place and things are not efficient. And when the list is three tasks to one line and double spaced then it is even clearer.

Everyone has to do the menial tasks but by organising it then there is space for the important things. I look at my list and see work and ironing and washing and cleaning but, peeping out from the murky gloom of labour, there are the beacons of hope that are playing, relaxing, fun, family time and all the joys that they bring.

I plan (see what I did there) to get something in order here. Being structured doesn’t need to be strict and joyless but if it helps me bring fun and more quality time then that’s worth planning for.

I am not sure who will read this but I am making and appeal to everyone of you, especially my family, if I haven’t updated this in the next week to tell you all that I have a plan and it is working then you have permission to call me a waster and to berate and hound me until it is done.

My fate and happiness is in my own hands so I had better get planning.

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A purpose? Albeit a time consuming one.

Like most people I have been writing stream of consciousness stuff on here that has been pertinent and useful but has maybe not said as much about me as I would like.

I have spent the day with family and, as per usual, have ended up discussing movies which has lead me to a purpose for this space I occupy.

I have a book of 1001 movies I, apparently, must see before I die and have probably seen about 50 of them.

This has lead me to realise that everyone has their favourite movie and a reason they love it so much and I want to know what it us and why.

I will do my best to watch all of your favourites and review them on the blog. It will take some time but I am a man of my word.

Send me those movies people…

Less than an hour’s work that will last so much longer

Well I did it and it was only a few minute’s work.

After spending some precious time with my wonderful daughter sorting out our front and back gardens I found myself equipped with the right tools to clean up the alley next to my house.

All it took was a brush and a shovel and now that I have done the job, removed the food packaging, discarded dummies and other everyday rubbish, I can walk past that particular piece of the place where I live and know that it looks the way if does because I spent a proportionately small amount of my time making it nice for the rest of my community.

I am not doing this for recognition and am pretty sure that it was only noticed by my neighbour’s dogs who yapped away whenever my broom went near their territory. What would happen though if we all did this? Fifteen minutes of your time to make somewhere nicer for everyone. How long would it take to bring back some community spirit?

I for one can tell you that, noticed or not, I known have made a tiny difference and it feels great.

Let me know if you have done the same. Comment on this post or follow me on Twitter @MrHoobs.

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