The depreciation of certainty and appreciation of doubt

The Sussex Coast College Christmas Dinner was ‘not delicious’ according to Khalid. I hope to do better in 23 days time. In general Khalid has settled in well and knows more about Jafer’s intentions to visit Hastings than I do, thanks to WhatsApp. He is also becoming a fan of Strictly and is impressed with the athleticism of Debbie McGee and not so impressed with the marking of judge Craig Revel-Horwood.

One dilemma to resolve is to buy or not to buy Brussels Sprouts this Christmas. It is the only time I eat them. And Penny eats them too. And Jafer and Kenan demand a side plate so they can remove them as they are so offended by them. I found as I got older I grew to appreciate the dishes I tolerated as a child, molohiya, bamya, enginar, fasulya and buselya (or molokhiya, okra, artichokes, beans and black eyed beans to the non-Turkish amongst you). Do I persevere with sprouts and parsnips. There is still time for Jafer and Kenan to acquire the taste for great vegetables.

As a youth I went to many house parties, and if they were held in the homes of West Indian friends there was not only great bass thumping reggae to listen to but the opportunity to have some great food too. Amongst white people you only got to drink beers and wines and maybe have some crisps and nuts if you were lucky. This fertilisation of cultures during the 1980s led me to have one experience to remember and not to desire a repeat of. In one house I went to, where white people lived they decided to serve food too. But being vegetarian chicken was off the menu. Instead we got

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Brussels sprouts curry. I didn’t ask for the recipe. A truly once in a lifetime experience. Discussing this with Jafer he mentioned that he’d seen a pasta dish with this fabulous vegetable.

Watching Have I Got News For You last night I learned that someone from the Flat Earth Society is building a rocket.

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They are in for a disappointment when they get it off the ground.

This week Palace played Brighton in the top division for the first time since the 1980s. It wasn’t a great match and a 0v0 draw preserved honour for both sides without giving us a reason to jump and down and shake the floorboards in Nelson Road. I can understand why Brighton consider us neighbours and rivals, who else have they got? Portsmouth? Gillingham? But Palace have many neighbours to have derby matches with. One such team is Charlton. They’re another team who loath us and we respond with indifference. For us Arsenal, Spurs, Chelsea etc. are more significant rivals. The fans of this team show no gratitude for sharing our ground with them in 1980/90s. One year we had two students, Ali from Libya and Juan from Chile, and they were keen to experience the passion of English football. With a game against Charlton coming up they were keen to visit. Juan asked ‘is it a clasico?’ Well Palace v Charlton is many things, but not what I would consider worthy of being described as a classic.

I have bumped into a client in my local Morrison’s two weeks in a row, yesterday he told me he was unhappy where he lived and wanted to leave. ‘Can I come and live with you?’ he said. Unfortunately not. I will pass on his comments to his social work team when I return to work. Last week he was happier when he saw me so maybe he was having a bad day. One of the questions he posed me last week ‘are dieticians good people?’

The big news earlier this week was that I am paying for a wedding I’m not getting invited to. I wish the happy couple well regardless.

This week was also notable for the return of Employable Me to the screens, BBC2 on Monday nights. It describes the challenges of disabled adults trying to get employment.

Getting old is a challenge. It is a challenge to adjust to your body not being what it was. And not just your body. As a teenager I knew everything. Just ask my mum and sisters. Only as I get older I appreciate that I know less and less with every year. The one thing you do get from ageing is perspective. A valuable tool to help you determine whether to be calm or to panic in situations that are challenging. One artist sang during the 1980s and was hero worshipped by a generation, some of whom became vegetarians, such was their devotion. As this artist has got older he has lost none of the certainty that he knows everything and the rest of us know nothing. The bitterness and anger was funny and touching when he was in his 20s. It’s worn thin 30 years later. He is like the uncle at a family gathering who talks to everyone and listens to no one. I won’t name him as he is more than capable of getting publicity for himself.

Things I recommend; increasing self awareness.

Things I don’t recommend; being bitter.

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