Tag: psychology

Spinning in Infinity

Control. The ultimate illusion. And yet one to which we are all addicted, or at the very least, conditioned. It is the great self-deception of which most of us are guilty. It is a mind game. We are merely toddlers who have learned how to walk straighter and grip tighter. None of this should sound unduly negative or cynical. It…

The ClearOut Podcast Episode 8

Drawing the Line at Madness Episode 8 of the podcast has me taking a good look at madness and placing it in a context of conflict and self-defence. My knowledge of karate and the systematised code of conduct in that world informs the discussion. I find counsel from one of the great fictional madmen – The Joker, and the words…

The ClearOut Podcast Episode 4

A Big Slab of Handsomeness In this episode of the podcast I go from outer space and isolation and space music to cricket, and my attempts to introduce the finer points of that game to my daughter. From there it is a short jump to baseball and a deep dive into The Natural, both the Bernard Malamud novel of 1952…

The ClearOut Podcast Episode 3

Am I a Clown or an Idiot, or Both? In episode three of the podcast I revisit some acting low points in my life before embarking on a discussion of clowns and their role in the formation of my acting identity. I argue that there is something clowns can teach us about living more honestly and happily. Along the way,…

Every Fallen Tree

Every Fallen Tree The reeds, still weeks off sprouting their shocks of composers’ cotton, were bent almost horizontal by the whistling wind. Moving in unison, they lulled and crescendoed to nature’s insistent baton, demonstrating the lesson I needed to learn: to cede, not to hold. But I had exchanged one storm for another. The battle brought outside, my brittle form…

Terms and conditions apply

My daughter is doing her absolute best to send me to an institution. She revels in breaking my concentration, in pulling my focus, in distracting me in any way she can from whatever task I am feebly trying to complete. Even though she runs the risk of being on the receiving end of an apoplectic outburst on my part, she…

Open

I love you as certain dark things are to be loved, in secret, between the shadow and the soul. Pablo Neruda It’s Halloween! Feeling spooky? Feeling scared? Looking over your shoulder? Cowering in the dark? Dressing up or dressing down? We have always celebrated Halloween here in Ireland and I have liked the associated festivities ever since I was a…

On your marks

I had hoped not to end up writing about the pandemic, but like the damn thing itself, it has become unavoidable. Apart from those whose occupations entail meeting the Coronavirus head on, life is being lived in low gear and in a minor key. We are in a permanent state of crouch, feeling the weight of shared anxiety and uncertainty,…