“About as On Topic as You Will Get From Me Today!”
Every morning Monday to Friday and with the occasional Saturday or Sunday and reflective upon what Suze is doing, l take a daily 45 minute walk with my friend Dodge a retired ex British military Colonel. He is 71 or nearly 72 as he says and then jokes that in truth he is 71 and a half. We have been friends for around 2 years now, in fact ever since l moved here in 2016 with Suze and Scrappy. And in that time we have developed a good solid friendship, which he is often surprised at given my disposition for not mixing with lots of people, but more so because when he once asked Suze if l was just humouring him by being his friend and she answered “No, Rory doesn’t have many real friends and the ones he does have he values and works hard at keeping. If you have Rory as your close friend, he is your close friend, but he doesn’t suffer fools gladly anymore and doesn’t take friendship lightly as it confuses him on a regular basis.”
He felt quite honoured.
You see Dodge has many acquaintances, but not many close friends that he can talk about anything with, he is considered quirky and l know how that feels ha ha!
We can discuss anything and as we are both well-travelled, well versed and share a very similar humour, we work quite well. In truth one of my series, which l must do some more work with The Grumblies is also very loosely based on us, in some respects.
During our morning walks, with Scrappy on lead, we will talk about anything and everything, covering a wide range of topics from family to politics to general goings on, to what each of us may be reading to what Netflix or television programmes either one may be interested in, to our lives before today to our partners to dogs, to … well you get the jist.
I have opened his eyes up to a lot of things that he could never ask anyone before about as they may have considered it inappropriate for his age, but hell he is ex-military, he has led a colourful life and knows a vibrant language equally as much as l. His wife ceases to want to know about our conversations now, after he asked me one day what in hells name was a DILF. He and his wife had been watching a programme and the term was brought up, and they both looked at each other in bewilderment, he simply said “I will ask Rory tomorrow, he is bound to know!”
Yes, and of course l knew and then we joked about dilfs, milfs, gilfs and belfs and nelfs, the latter because one of his friend’s grandchildren plays World of Warcraft and was constantly on about such things.
Today we were talking about my blog and blogging. Dodge is a bit like me in so far as we don’t have fancy mobile phones, in fact between the two of us and Scrappy, l am the only one with a mobile phone and it is an old brick, it has 4 functions only, text in, text out, call in and call out, that’s it, no internet connection, no games, although it has a torch l think. Dodge has a laptop whereas l have a desktop of which Scrappy has use of, and as far as technical digital computer technology goes that’s it.
Dodge is all rather confused by the whole blogging business, but equally fascinated by the concept, and expressed questions of interest today.
He wanted to know what the blog was about, and so l told him. Next why a blog and not say a diary? I answered with the simple fact that l had never kept a diary or a journal, and that thinking on it, l had never actually sat down and penned any of my daily thoughts anywhere, l always wrote about life via my yesterdays, that my poetry is reflective upon my emotions at the time, and that’s the closest l got to ‘on topic daily’ per se was with Scraps diary episodes.
“So, you don’t write about your day to day thoughts anywhere on this blog of yours?”
“No, not really, l prefer to write a form of entertaining story in comparison to a day in day out aspect of the world or my life. My life these days is somewhat boring and uneventful in consideration to the previous years, l have a lot to say Dodge of my yesterdays.”
“So why do you blog then, if you are not discussing today? What’s your end game?”
It was this innocent question that stumped me for a while and l gave it a lot of thought before answering.
“Since as far back as l can remember l have written, or drawn, or coloured or painted or photographed as a way of expressing who l was and am now. In 2009, the most extraordinary thing happened, my brain started to overspill. I simply found that for some reason l couldn’t hold any more information, and l wanted to absorb more and more all the time. It wasn’t that l couldn’t take more in, more a case of, l had to let stuff back out. One morning, l just woke up, and had to pen for hours, which turned into days which turned into weeks and months and after about six months, l eventually started to slow down from the furiousness of my over spilling brain. From the moment that this strange almost surreal part of my life occurred, l noticed that EVERYTHING l wrote was in rhyme. It got to the point l even spoke in rhyme.”
“My brain had simply said “No more, till you do this!” It was almost like a kind of religious euphoria had gripped me and l was obligated to empty the shell out. From 2009 to 2012 l wrote around 2000 poems. When this happened, l was astonished, l had never before written in rhyme, always long story and tale, so to suddenly produce such a vast quantity of literature was quite overwhelming.”
“It was only during the slowing down period that l started to see a pattern to it all, it was my life to that point in time. In 2008 or in essence the previous year to the rhymes starting l had received my diagnosis for Asperger’s and after receiving it for months whilst l felt relieved, l was also lost. I simply didn’t know who l was anymore – l was still Rory, but l was different, l had to rediscover myself and become me again.”
“The Rory l had been born to be, not the boy or man that society had snubbed and ostracised in one movement, and had shaped and moulded to believe differently. Finally, l realised that all of this rhyming was the old me and the new me in reflection. After about a year, l slowed down on the poetry, instead of writing 3 – 4 and more pieces a day, l was producing 1 maybe 2, and by 2012 l was producing perhaps 2 a week. But what did happen in 2010 was l started an autobiography of my life, but it was a very dark and morbid account and although by 2012, l had finished it, l wasn’t happy with the end product, it was way too angry.”
“When l met Suze in 2013, l let her read it and she said that the person she knew then was not the person that that had written that book, and maybe l should try a rewrite, and so l did, which l finished in 2015. It was much better, but STILL l wasn’t happy with it, it STILL didn’t reflect me properly. So l walked away from it, with a view to revisiting sometime in my future, but all the while between then and now, l have been thinking, “Well what is missing? Why am l not content with it?”
“I started blogging last October, and back then was a very different story and journey to how l blog today. It was once more darker, and l woke up and said NO MORE, l am going to change and evolve my life and this time l am going to be on the winning hand and so l changed the entire blog to properly reflect who l am.”
“Recently in the last few months, l have felt the desire to start the book again, but this time l know what l have to do. I have to write it completely and utterly differently to how l had approached it before. Instead of it focusing on my entire life, that was pointless. This time l decided to only write about the time prior to my diagnosis and cover a ten year stretch. This would be much easier for me to write, as it would really show the discovery of the new me.”
Dodge listened to all this intently as is his way, nodding at the appropriate times and muttering the right noises during the others. “So don’t you write about that then, what we discuss, that’s pretty on-topic. I get where you are coming from with the way you want to readdress the book, sounds like a plan. What l think you are saying is that in many ways, the way you write now as in all the tales of your yesteryears, is yet again another way of emptying your head ready to write the autobiography, but in a more reflective style?”
“That’s exactly it Dodge, l write my previous life in my blog day in and day out and hopefully people enjoy what l have to say, but my ‘end game’ is to be able to start the autobiography properly this time and not fill it with everything else, but only on who l was to who l have become.”
So you see folks, Dodge and l have at times some pretty deep and meaningful conversations about a host of topics, but when we do, l always come away with a series of thoughts that l can mentally play with during the day, and today’s was maybe a form of diary is in order, looking at on topic thoughts of the days, maybe once or twice a week or so … the last post of the night.
So without further ado …