When Famous People Die

23/06/2015

When Famous People Die ©
By Michael Casey
I’ve just come in from cleaning our front door step, some nice person let their dog pooh all over it, and my daughter stood in it as we left for the school run. Such is life, events happen and you have to deal with them. I looked at the news on the Internet and saw that James Horner had died, never heard of him, then I read the detail below, we have all heard of him or his music. He wrote the music for Braveheart and Titanic amongst other things.

So it got me thinking, how would you or me be remembered? If at all. There are a couple of graveyards down the road from our house, my daughter said she wouldn’t put me in there but in a private graveyard, or she’d have me cremated and put in her plant pots so I could help her flowers grown. Sweet and innocent love from an 11 year old. I believe Scottie from Star Trek was blasted into space, or rather his ashes, James Horner did the music for one of the Star Trek films as well.
A famous person dies and it’s all over the news, there may even be a competition for top death spot on the news.

Christopher Lee beat Ron Moody for top spot on the death news, why, because Dracula had more in him, or rather more films made. I read somewhere a long time ago that the newspapers and the tv people have ready-made obituaries, an off the shelf, ready-made death notice. So IF your name is on that kind of list you know you have arrived, you have made it, because your obituary is ready, reassuring that isn’t it? Things do go wrong though, Robert Morley’s death was announced and his son Sheridan was interviewed, but his dad was still alive and kicking. Then there is Mark Twain who’s death was announced when he had not shuttled off this mortal coil, you can Google the famous quotation for yourselves.

He was a right bastard, a mean bugger, never had the time of day for him. Then months later after his pauper’s burial you discover he had made millions on the stock market and left it all to charity. Does your attitude to the deceased change immediately, or do you think the bastard should have left his cash to you, so you could invest it down the bar of the Black Swan. Then there is the case of Jimmy Savile, an “angel” turned into a devil after death.

Death is the great leveler, books are written, tv shows are shown, retrospectives are held in museums and art galleries. You get 360 degrees of information, good, bad and downright sad. So that is why he or she did that, that’s why they were so driven, that’s why they loved so much. We though he was so happy, but he hid his broken heart. We though he was such a bastard, but he was just defending himself from emotional hurt. He had a secret lover, he must have been a right dirty bastard, but we didn’t know his wife told him to take a lover because of this or that.
You only know what comes from a glimpse, from a crack in the curtain, from a random meeting in the supermarket, even stars have to buy milk for their cat. You can only know what a person is like by living with them, to experience with them. He looks great, I bet he’s great in the sack, I bet she’s explosive in bed. But it could be the total opposite, curlers and cocoa in bed with a book and the pussy purring besides her.
The true test for famous people when they die is whether you go “ah” when you hear it on the news, if you say “ah” then their lives have touched your life. My mother was asked to go to the graveyard with the priest a few times, somebody had died and was being given a pauper’s funeral. I featured this in my novel The Butcher The Baker and The Undertaker. So it was just mum and the priest and the undertaker. Mum would get a lift back home in the jump seat of the hearse as our house was close to the undertakers.

In my comic novel Joan Derby has a jazz funeral and 100s turn up for that lost soul. When my own mother died we had 5 priests on the altar and the church was rammed with 100s of people, real people who knew her. She was not famous at all, but every lost soul who was in Heaven rushed to greet her on her funeral day. She had prayed at their grave now was the time to thank her.

Common Sense or the Obvious

22/06/2015

Common Sense or the Obvious ©

By Michael Casey

I just read that the Oxford Dons were not very impressed by the students, no common sense. I should declare an interest straight away, one of my brothers went to Oxford and another to Cambridge. As a matter of fact our little cluster of streets in inner city Birmingham had 4 Oxbridge and 2 PhDs. Four families all going to the same Mass on Sundays. I won’t claim going to Mass at our local church makes you clever, staying up very late and hitting the books, that is the really important thing.
Logic does help you along the learning path, my old school friend, he’s a PhD by the way, he used to say the “Casey Logic”, to be honest I cannot remember what he was on about, it maybe 45 years ago. I do know that a lot of clever people have no common sense. They have spent too much time with their noses in books, or maybe making spliffs.

Logic helps you plan and organise what you are doing. The Augustinian way helps too, our old priest Fr.George was a great one for the Augustinian way, he was at the Augustinian church in Harborne after all. Fr.George had a tremendous accent, the deepest Brummie you could possibly imagine, he used to work on the track at the car factory, he used to go up Broad St at the weekends before the call came. Now what Fr.George used to say was that you have to put your feet in other’s shoes, you have to have 360degrees of knowledge. Modern companies have 360 degree appraisals, so when you are looking at a problem you must look from every angle, just as staff are assessed by their bosses as well as their co-workers.

If all you do is read the formula then you’ll only have one dimension, you’ll have the answer but no understanding, and the answer may not be the answer after all. When I worked in a hotel people could be busy chatting in the foyer while their toddler could get his head trapped and hit by the revolving door, so obviously I was their eyes while they were chatting. If you have time to chat in a sales job you do not look at who you are talking to, you can actually stand back to back then between you the full 360degrees of potential customers is covered. It’s logical its common sense, basic common sense.

So common sense is what parents have while their kids don’t think of danger, or potential danger, my girls said I was like Mr Brown in Paddington, I did see some similarities but without parents watching kids do walk straight into traffic. You don’t use your phone as you are crossing the road, you do look both ways before you cross the road. You do wear a warm coat in winter, though fashion and young girls say otherwise. You don’t use your phone while you are driving either, though pigs will fly before this will happen.

Logic should be taught in all schools, a couple of hours may be enough. Before we were let loose on the guests at CPNEC back in 2002 we had training, Anthony did actually ask me had I read his notes or a book beforehand, as to me a lot was obvious, it was common sense. Basically its STOP and THINK, but getting teenagers to do that is another matter entirely.
In Coding as they call it nowadays there are IF/THEN options, or if you are going to the bar you get cheese and onion crisps as that’s what you always have, so knowledge helps with choices. If your friend had a crisps allergy then you buy nuts instead, or if your friend does not drink alcohol then you buy him a whisky, a 40 year old whisky, well that’d be what my friend would expect.

Knowledge helps with choices, you don’t give a bacon sandwich to a Muslim or a Jew or Beef to a Hindu. If you were feeding me everything would be ok, though this year post-operation I have given up meat. So you have to do your research, it’s logical to do research. Event planners find out what is needed and then serve that. If you are selling your house you get rid of all the tat that you may like, you turn your home into Ikea land, then it’ll sell, otherwise it’ll stay on the market for years. Again put yourself in the buyers’ shoes, is this tat or is it neutral. Neutral sells, tat such as a space mural in purple with matching carpet means your house will stay on the market, and yes I really did see that in one house I looked at.

Think before you act, I need to move that big big box, so do you just lift it and hurt your back? No you nudge it with your foot, or push against a corner to estimate how heavy it really is. Then get a trolley and some help if you need it. Planning your route so you don’t have to carry the item for a second longer than you need, and so that you avoid blocking off any area. A golfer will do a practice shot before he takes the real one, ditto with anything you are thinking of doing. What are the consequences of your actions, action and reaction as they say in science.

Common sense can be taught, it can be learnt, you need to sit down and have the teacher explain the worth of it. It can be boring for the teacher to have to explain it to dullards, but once learnt it is a skill for life, just as important as leaning the Times Tables when you are 8. Dirk Borgarde when he was growing up used to play a game with his parents, the look in the window game. Then he had to turn his back on the window and try and remember what he had seen, years later he was a photographic interpreter, because he was observant.

Think for 5 seconds before you take any action, that’s the key, sadly some people think being quick is classy, when they just fall on their ass. What matters is the result, the tortoise will always beat the hare, because the tortoise is logical.

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Help I think I’m a geek

16/06/2015

Help I think I’m a Geek ©

By Michael Casey

Back in 1978 I listened to my brother and applied for a job in computers, I got that job, I stayed 21 years, market research into alcohol sales. Back then people were impressed when you said you worked in computers, 37 years ago, when I was still a teenager. It was a DEC PDP 1170 computer with a row of flashing lights and toggle switches, it was as  big as two wardrobes. There were even tape decks as big as dinner plates, not forgetting a cardreader, because you had to screw on the tapes I still to this day have a very strong twist action. This is perfect for opening and closing bottles of pop or salad cream. The other thing to remember is that we ran out of space, so we had to delete things to make sure the job wouldn’t crash. It was like Wallace and Grommet where they ran out of track and had to race as they hurtled through the living room.

Now in 2015 a home computer will have a terabyte or 1000 gig in plain English. If we had 10% of 1 gig at the time I’ll be amazed. I think when we updated the computers 15 years later we had 4 gig or something. So with this background you can understand my attitude to home computing.

I tidy up, I tidy up every time I finish on the computer, I delete History and any other files I can find, just in case I run out of space. So I still have 60gig plus, but it may as well be 60 bytes, I must tidy up. All because of 1978 in my computer room.  On the night shift I’d come in and the lads had left a trail of stuff for me to tidy up, lads can be like that, just like our own teenagers. So I always spent 20 mins tidying up after them, rather like our kitten Totoro who is running around behind me.

I know somebody who never, and I mean never did a disc cleanup. So their system went slower and slower over the years. I know somebody else who never used their company email account, when they left after 3 years it took an hour for the email to open, as there were thousands of emails waiting to be looked at. There was print room email account which he did look at, but the personal one, never.

I also know of another place where no backups were done and the company could have folded when disaster struck.  Modern companies are not that stupid, law firms save everything to a server, every email and document is numbered and filed away for posterity. So FIFA will have a lot to answer for, not unless the computers or server room are destroyed, though didn’t somebody say their computers were destroyed…..

Now everybody should have, must have an antivirus, AVG, Avast, Avira start the alphabet and ZoneAlarm finishes it, there is Norton in the middle. If you google FREE antivirus then you’ll get a load of results. Just read the reviews and then decide which is for you. In computer terms just like any marketing FREE does not mean FREE, its means FEE in one month’s time, but you can downgrade to a free version.

As they are free you could be tempted to have 2 or 3 on your PC or laptop, and guess what, your processor can be wadding through treacle. Trial and error helps. 360security is a Chinese antivirus, it also tidies up really well, though some will say too well. Again have a look for yourself.

Now when I came out of hospital after my surgery, my triple heart bypass I came home and switched on the computer and everything was gone. My books, my stories, my babies. It took 3 days to restore the computer, it had gone back to factory settings while I was away. I nearly cried, but as you can imagine I had backups.

The simplest thing to do is to use your email. Every time you send an email you copy it to a folder. So you email your mother-in-law after you send it you drag it to the DEVIL folder, or when you email your accountant you drag it to the BASTARD folder, when you email your Rabbi or Priest you drag it to the GOD folder, when you email your daughters you drag it to the DEBT folder. And so on, so that you instantly know what is in each folder. Now for the actual files you attach them to an email and then they are safe.

So you email michaelgcasey@hotmail.com attaching your stuff, once you have sent it you then put the message into a folder, such as FUNNY. What you also do is get a few email accounts, so that you can email your stuff to yourself on Hotmail, yahoo, gmail, gmx, aol and any other account. Now if your computer dies your files are safe, they are on servers all over the world. You can send your stuff to your family and friends with do not delete in subject line.

Of course you should go to Argos or Amazon or PCWorld and get a few USB sticks too. For a few quid your company, and I mean company is safe. I tell my daughter to do all this when she is doing her homework, so how much more important are your company files. You can also download your special stuff to another device you have in the home or at the office.

We all have 1000s of photos of our kids, as we all have digital camera and phones nowadays, so 10,000 photos taken over 10 years are worth protecting. My nephew said he had 5000 photos on his phone, can you believe that? You can pay for storage or you can just use the free storage on Hotmail and Gmail.  30 gig on Hotmail and 15gig on Gmail. And you can get multiple accounts.

Computers are fun, until they go wrong, and computer engineers are all mad, they don’t get the job unless they have a bizarre sense of humour, ditto for industrial printer engineers. I know this to be a fact, so trust me. However you can look after yourself if you are careful.

Get a couple of email accounts. Put everything in a folder after you have sent it. Back up your files to the Gdrive or Hotmail’s drive.  Always make 3 copies at least to usb sticks. Password is not a clever password, Drowssap is better but still not good. Add a few Upper case and numbers too. For example my inside leg is 35, my hair is brown, and I am French, so a good password could be 35BRUNfrancais.

Get an antivirus and use it, and don’t forget to tidy up not unless you want to be like Wallace and Grommet and the train track. My real password is fatBastard2015HeartAttack, but don’t tell anybody.

Me Easter 2014

still not good. Add a few Upper case and numbers too. For example my inside leg is 35, my hair is brown, and I am French, so a good password could be 35BRUNfrancais.

Get an antivirus and use it, and don’t forget to tidy up not unless you want to be like Wallace and Grommet and the train track. My real password is fatBastard2015HeartAttack, but don’t tell anybody.

Timekeeping

08/06/2015

Timekeeping ©

By Michael Casey

I’m late, I’m late for a very important date said the rabbit in Alice in Wonderland, you are late you are late I say every morning as my daughter glides out the door to school, finally. Girls just have to wash their hair first thing in the morning, why not do it the night before? Or once a week as some blokes do, or don’t.

I used to work shifts, night shifts for 14years, even 12 hour night shifts, so I know all about catching buses and being on time. Especially if you had to get a handover from the evening shift, or you wanted to dash for the bus after the evening shift. Time is money, or rather time is bedtime after a long shift, or time is fun time on the night shift. So time matters.

Kids love their phones, so instead of just wash, eat and then out the door, its let’s talk about what we are going to talk about as we walk to school,  and let’s talk about what we are having for breakfast while we are having breakfast. All this goes on while in one hand they have a slice of toast, and in another they hold their phone, sometimes the jam is spread on the phone, or the phone is placed in the mouth. At times I’d like to flush the phone down the toilet.

Then there is demand for a pound for this and a pound for that, just as they go out the door, running as they don’t want to be late to meet their best mate. Why didn’t they ask the night before, you could have gone to the corner shop for change, now you have to trust them with a tenner. You won’t see any change back from that. Your daughters air kiss you as they run away, nearly stumbling over the school ruck sack with all the school books in it.

My small daughter takes after me, she reads a book, looking through the glass table as she eats, this protects the book, and amuses me. We leave on time, after mum has kissed Totoro our new kitten as she heads for her car. Me and my daughter we walk up the hill to the school, we are on time, we are good time keepers. The street is in fact our watch, why because we can read the street as well as we can read a watch.

There is a sky blue jaguar which we see every morning, he is turning into our road just as we are tuning out of it. So if we see him we know we are on time. Then there is Mrs Shufflebum, she is always pulling at her clothes, as if the knicker elastic is broken. She is a regular on our school run, as is the lady with the child who we meet in the street every day. There are two fat Asian lads too, if you like the street is like a giant cuckoo clock, everything is timed to perfection. There’s the lady dressed like a soldier who we see getting into her car every morning, numerous kids with parents attached, all on q, all of them part of some human clock, part of some natural ballet, this tells us that WE are on time.

On my way home there is the lady in the disability chair with her male carer, and the man with the two walking sticks, not to mention Mrs Candyfloss who looks as if a candyfloss has been stuck to her hair when she was not looking. So I don’t really need a watch, but I DO adore watches. A Cartier diamond bleu automatic would be my luxury if ever I had money to waste, I’m just hoping I get some change back from that tenner.

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Thought for the Day

06/06/2015

Thought for the Day ©

By Michael Casey

I was at the Post Office Sorting Office this morning, it’s next to an old church and besides a huge Sheik Temple, I noticed just how peaceful it was there. The grass had been freshly cut around the graveyard, the Gurdwara opposite was glistening in the sun, over the main road used to be the steel works where my dad spent 40 years of his life. Up the road from there is a primary school where Betty our piano teacher had spent years teaching. She never met my dad in all those years, there is no demand for piano teachers in a steel works, nor steel workers in schools.

I enjoyed the Summer sun and remarked to myself just how peaceful it was there in sunny Smethwick. It was an effort to climb all the steps to get to the claim your post at the post office, but at least it makes you appreciate all the walking the postmen do. Now I’ve been looking at the DT and it was saying how the C of E was in decline, and it mentioned The Thought for Today. I could volunteer my words, and indeed I do, but I’ll just try and stick to topic.

People are more selfish, and going to church takes time, my local priest chastises his own brother for going to golf on a Sunday and not bringing the kids to Mass to hear their uncle sing, and celebrate Mass. The article was more about the C of E and how in a generation it could disappear. The Catholic church has its own problems, we know all about them, so no need for me to list them here. I have a Dave Allen and Don Camillo attitude to God, everything will be alright in the end. Only ISIS or Dash, would kill me, there must be a guidebook to slaughter. As for the C of E my 2 daughters stumbled into the choir several years ago, so they are      C of E and my Shanghai wife attends with them. She’s a covert to Christianity, she says she only married me because I was a Christian, though she did ask were Catholics Christians.

Churches have offers, not quite like Aldi, but offers that bring people through the door, coffee mornings, and bingo used to be the thing. Youth clubs and so forth, though some street wise kids will come just for the fun and not the Faith, and can you blame them? Maybe packaging is important, so you trick people into learning about Faith, a bit like fish fingers and potatoes being processed into shapes, just so kids eat them. Ditto with the Bible, though I should add other faiths are available, in the interests of balance, and political correctness.

Sermons should be short, 10 mins tops, you can run through the parish notices and then give the sermon. A sermon is about explaining the Word of God, it’s not about massaging the ego or intellect of the priest. If both sides of your buttock are numb then the sermon has been much too long, if just one buttock is about to get nub then the priest should be saying let’s stand for the Creed. I could be a mystery guest evaluating sermons.

Boredom is probably the greatest cause for loss of people, why be in agony with your piles when the priest is too busy proving his intellect, when nobody cares. President Kennedy once said 15mins is the ideal length for a meeting, get to the point and then move on to something else. I think he was right, so priests should follow that advice.

Brian Cox has brought the stars to life, his simple style, the love he shows for his subject has made him a star, and made us all look up to the stars. I’m not saying he should become the next Archbishop of Canterbury, I am saying that love has to show through the messenger towards the message. If the messenger is dull and boring people will change channel, or stay and in bed and make love to the wife, or somebody else’s wife while the husband is at church being bored.

I’m not saying either that the Cherie Blair version of future church being like a happy clappy supermarket, without a cross to be seen, as it just would not be cool, so only hyper brainwashed yuppies need apply. A lot is to do with the “packaging” you have to get people interested in today’s App centric world. Jesus App for example, or is there one already?

2000 years ago it was all word of mouth, “you must have heard about Jesus of Nazareth ….” We had the tv series with Robert Powell 30 years plus ago, perhaps we need to reboot that. Modern technology has to be used, you have to meet people in their world, otherwise you’ll not meet them in the next. If all the C of E does is dress up and attend the Houses of Parliament for fancy occasions, then the weeds will grow all over their churches, and we all know about the Parable of the Sower.

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Desktop Background

03/06/2015

Desktop Background ©

By Michael Casey

I thought I’d better write something new as it is a new month, 3rd June 2015 is today’s date, so I’ve decided to write about Desktop Background. How do I decide what to write about? I have written over 600 stories/articles now, so I have covered a lot of subjects.

Well I had the Eiffel Tower as a desktop background, my wife had taken the photo at Easter when she and the girls were in Paris. I missed the trip as I’m still recovering from surgery, as you all know. So I was bored with it and was thinking about changing it, so hey presto my new topic presented itself. Desktop Background.

Yes, it’s as easy as that, then I sit down for an hour or so and it’s done. It’s a little challenge for myself, can I write on the given topic. In England we have a radio show called Just a Minute, which has been going on for 50 years I think. You can research it yourselves. The people on the show have to speak for just a minute without deviation, hesitation, or repeating themselves, repeating themselves, I said that already. So if you like my short pieces are like the radio show, spontaneous.

As we all have families, we tend to have silly photos as our desktop backgrounds. I like silly photos, I hate the pretentious  and cold ones that Royal families used to take. So I have a family picture as my desktop background then when I tire of it I replace it with an even funnier one.

Each time I post I try and add a photo so that the readers can see just who is this Michael Casey or should I say michaelgcasey. It’ll help if ever they want to buy my 8 books on Amazon. I image you are all the same, you get a sillier photo so it just has to go on the desktop background. We are like Modern Family on tv, we’ve only recently discovered the show by the way. So we all have thousands of photos, digital cameras have a lot to be blamed for, so we are all spoilt for choice.

What does your desktop background say about you? Or your screensaver for that matter. Do you have naked models? It used to be the Pirelli Calendar, now the whole of the Internet can provide all kinds of everything. Is it smoking hot Firemen, holding a hose. Is it a country cottage, or a snap from your holiday in Provence? A picture of your mum, or the stone shack where she was born in Kerry Eire? A picture of a shire horse ploughing the land.

Our choice or choices give so much away, and Sherlock will easily know what lies beneath, such as if we are a secret nudist, I of course would need everything ironed. Our desktop background is in fact a key to our very heart. What we truly love is framed on our computer screen. If you see screens with selfies on then that is worrying.

Generally it’s the puppy dog we loved as a child, or the pet we now have. Boyfriends can change, but puppy love lasts forever, just ask Donny Osmond.

So desktop backgrounds are the modern memento, we carry our computers and fancy phones with us everywhere, they contain all our memories. As I’m sat here at the computer I look around and see photos scattered all over the shelves, books some even in Chinese, a heap of coats on the old sofa, our piano with the angel playing the flute above. These things are home. But as we all travel and go to work we cannot brings these things with us.

So desktop backgrounds and screensavers, these are our home, they suckle us just as much as our mothers’ breast did. With these images on our screens, on our computer screens and on our phones we are safe, we are home. We may be far away in Shanghai we may be in Palo Alto, we may even be here in Birmingham, the real Birmingham the one in England.

Wherever we are we are home, we are family, we are safe and happy and not alone, the images stored on  desktop background and screen savers are Love, they are dad holding our hand when we were afraid. They are mum giving a consoling hug. They are that fireman we met the other month, the one who, well you know, the one who drenched you. You can be in Osaka far far away, homesick but determine, yet you are not alone because you have the desktop background and screen saver to remind you of all the love.

The Beatles sang Love is all you Need, I’d say have a desktop background, its smiles better.

mums house

My Writing

01/06/2015

Hello all, as its a new month I will back off my oldest pieces and start writing new ones.

I have miraculously gained a follower, so if he/she/it wishes to get a free copy of one of my books just get in touch.

By the way Windows 10 is coming so get your free copy, which will be serviced, its worht getting for your home or business.

Me Easter 2014

Elevator Ad or give my column a few inches in your media

02/09/2014

Hello , how about a Verbal Cartoon for Radio and all other media

I grew up listening to the radio, we all used to hide under the blankets and listen when we should have been fast asleep. Radio did change my life, a lodger gave us a radio when he had to go back to Ireland to look after his sick mum. In fact he left all his stuff and caught the first boat home. Months later he came back to see us and said me and my brother could have his old Bush radio. I spent 20 years listening to radio. That and being afraid of Mr Gallagher when I was 8 changed my life, and improved my intellect.

Today after 20 years of radio and 25 years of writing, 45 years in total I think I’m a good writer, and thank God so do others. Yes I’m 55 now, in my head I’m 20, though my wife would say 12.

I met my Shanghai wife in the old people’s home, she was cleaning my dad’s room. I was positively vetted by a Chinese Ballerina  from the Birmingham Royal Ballet, now we are married with 2 bilingual daughters. I am the token male and English speaker in the family.

Now here’s a few samples, what I’d like to do would be to read my shorts/blogs on your radio. Each piece is about 90 seconds long, 90 seconds with Michael is the idea, simple idea. I have gained 18,000+ views on Funny or Die for a sample . ON Google+ I have 23,000 views in just a few weeks for my samples.

 

1st chapter of Tears for a Butcher which will be my 8th book. Only the other day a publisher said my book of shorts 300 and Not OUT was very funny. In fact I must have 530+ shorts, enough for over a year.

I have started recording all my Shorts and have put 50+ of them on www.michaelgcasey.typepad.com  I have a new mike now too, so listen in reverse order.

My  7 books are on Amazon Kindle

http://www.amazon.com/Michael-Casey/e/B00571G0YC/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_pop_1

and

www.michaelgcasey.wordpress.com   is my site.

Here’s the samples for radio or print.

Let There Be Light ©

By Michael Casey

Let my tears be my words

Let the candle light be my eyes

Let the flowers in bloom be my lips

Let their scent be my blood

Let the wind be my breath

Let clouds be my mood

Let children’s laughter be my hope

Let widows’ sighs be my conscience

Let a stranger’s prayers be my delight

Let the bees be my wisdom

Let the trees be my strength

Let my patience reach to the stars

Let me be always remembered in your prayers

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Dead and The Living (c)

 

by

 

Michael  Casey

 

 

I first saw a deceased when I was nine years old, my father said not

 

to worry as the dead are the same as the living,  only the  laughter

 

has left them,  the sparkle has gone from their eyes, the worry has

 

been lifted from their shoulders,  and their voice has vanished  to

 

eternity.

 

In  paradise the sparkle will return for it is the  twinkle  of  the

 

stars, the laughter will return too for it is the morning breeze and

 

the turning tides are their sides shaking with laughter.

 

I treat the deceased with the same courtesy as I give to the living,

 

though I find the deceased are always more polite.  My father also

 

had a few words to say about the living.

 

He said that the living are only the caretakers of the soul, yet

 

they think their existence is everything, that they know everything

 

because they experience many things with their senses.

 

What the living don’t acknowledge is that their time is short  and

 

when I lay their bodies to rest then their souls  continue  without

 

them,  without their strong, without their weak,  without  their

 

beautiful or even ugly temporary form, to where I cannot say, only

 

that it is a better place.

 

Percy the undertaker placed the lid on the coffin, the soul was free

 

 

THE  BEGINNING

 

LinkedIn Profile  and  CV ©

By

Michael Casey

We’ve all been on Facebook and LinkedIn, we get to know people and make “friends”. On LinkedIn it’s more about connections and maybe business connections. So we have to rely on the Profile, my LinkedIn profile tells my story, as I am a writer. But how accurate are these Profiles?

I am a born leader.

Means he was the firstborn boy in a family of 11 girls.

I created the supply chain structure.

Means he decided to use a clipboard and notepad instead of just his memory.

I optimised the sales among target audiences.

He chatted up all the girls, he was kind to seniors and went to church.

I was inventive and creative in gaining new sales.

Means he designed a flyer and went street to street delivering them.

I was never afraid of going the extra mile for the business.

Means there was a street gang chasing  him after he was at  the bank

I am great at communicating the business message.

He just would not shut up, so the boss got him to tidy the fruit outside the ma and pa store.

I always try and improve myself.

Means he has no friends so he reads a lot.

I created the new scheme to optimise the business cash flow.

Means he took the store’s cash and put the money on a horse.

I am now looking for new opportunities to excel

Means he got fired, cops not called as the owner married to his sister

I created a great new idea for centralising purchasing delivery.

Means he was a guard for the money delivery company, crash helmet and visor.

I created my own start-up company

Means he stole the money from the cash delivery company and started his own company.

I am now on a learning sabbatical before resuming my career

Means he is in jail, working in the library.

So when you read those LinkedIn profiles or reading a CV or resume think what do they really mean. Check the photos out too, the reality can be far different. Just like actors, photos can be 10 or 20 years old, and they are. Dig deeper.

Me, I google and check people out, as far as you can on Google. Google me and my sites and think for yourself. I am on a sabbatical myself, no I’m not in a library, thought we have plenty of books in the house, no it’s called arthritis, which comes and goes and makes me scream sometimes. But at least I can sit here and make some of you laugh, as I Google everybody.

 

 

 

Sleepover©

By

Michael Casey

Sleepover is exactly that, your sleep is over, you have laughing kids invading your house, and driving you out of your minds. Well not always, but it is very distracting. You can’t remember what you were doing and where has that file gone on the computer. This is the 2nd time I’m telling this story, why, because my Word, or upon my word, the story died or rather Word did not close properly, so now you’re getting something different.

Total strangers, or strangers to you arrive at the house and kind of invade it for a night. You do shout up the stairs, keep them out of my room. Not because you have anything worth stealing, but they are stealing your privacy, and that’s all you have left if you have daughters in your house.

Then the smell of nail varnish drifts down the stairs and permeates everywhere, its worse than mustard gas from the Great War. You scream up the stairs, open all the windows fully, what about your room, dad? Especially mine.

Its then that your inner sanctum is breached as they bring their friends to help them open the window. They see the Teddy Bear that you’ve had since you were 6 years old, the invader laughs. She also sees the deep heat by your bed, And he complains about nail varnish.

Dinner time arrives and you have to feed the cuckoo, only she doesn’t eat this or she doesn’t eat that, on principle. So you say, you’ll have to stave then. Your daughter, the host, is horrified, so you relent and flick a pound coin at them, cholesterol free oil used to make the chips. So a compromise is achieved.

You put Sky Sports on to watch the match, they say Qatar is going to build underground stadia, novel idea. You are settling down to see Rooney when they arrive back chip laden. Her friend just loves the ballet and Sky Arts has Bolshoi on, so could they please please watch that. You say you’ll record it for them. But you are as bad as a puppy murderer even for suggesting it.

So being a nice dad you let them watch the ballet on your 46inch tv, while you retreat to watch the match on the laptop upstairs. They never tell you about this at parenting classes, just how to change nappies. Let’s hope William and Kate are told.

After the ballet they retreat upstairs for girlie music, and what were you doing in their room on the laptop. Didn’t you know you are just a dad not allowed in the inner sanctum. The Hits is switched on  their dab radio at volume 13, you retreat to watch the after match talk on the big screen.

Later its bath time, so you have to wait 2 hours for all the girls in your house, including the cuckoo, to pollute the bathroom before you a mere dad, and bill payer, can have a shave. Only your last razor has been used to save somebody’s legs.

So everybody goes to bed, all is well, holding your teddy bear, you sleep soundly. Until 3am, when a banshee screaming wakes you, your wife and all the neighbours. It’s the cuckoo, she’s having a nightmare, it must be the chips, and the cholesterol free oil from them. Or half waking up and forgetting where she was.

So remembering to put on your dressing gown you have to calm everybody down, and answer the door, to the police, as the neighbour from neighbourhood watch has rung them. So the police come in and have a look. Flatulence is written down in the Police note book. As you let the police out the house again your smallest daughter hands you your teddy bear, its ok dad, it’s only a sleepover.

 

How do Men Shop? ©

By Michael Casey

There is a difference between Men and Women, and thank God for it. But how do men shop? Shopping for men is about getting what you need, my shoes have a hole in them so I’ll go to the shop and buy another pair. A man will buy a new pair of shoes that are exactly the same as his old pair of shoes, or if he’s being adventurous he’ll have a pair of shoes which are exactly the same but with grey laces and not black. Now to a man this is being fashion conscious. If a man wants a new pair of trousers he just goes to the shop and sees if they have his leg/waist size and then tries them on, making sure they don’t split when he bends over and that his package is not squeezed. If a man needs a suit he checks the trousers before putting on the jacket, the jacket must be able to be done up without his belly exploding the buttons off. A man will never button up his suit jacket, but he needs to know that the buttons won’t fly off and hit anybody in the eye, if ever he does.

If a man needs a shirt he checks the neck size, 18.5 in my case, and then he sees if its full fit or not. Then he buys 5 shirts exactly the same all  in plastic . For a lazy shopper he’ll go straight to Slaters and get what he wants. In and out in 30 mins for everything. Then he’ll go to the pub and meet his mates and have one pint too many and leave all his shopping in the Queens Tavern. Luckily they are honest there and his shopping is saved, otherwise he’s have to waste 30mins in Slaters, before going back to the pub.

This is basically the difference between men and women. Woman shop, men pick up clothes or whatever like an order picker does, without any passion.  A man gets home and puts his shopping away and forgets about it. Just like in the film The Fly where the man’s wardrobe contains suits all the same colour, clothes are just a thing so they are all uniform.

As for women shopping s something different, the clothes have to be tried on and they must make the woman look perfect, her bum or boobs mustn’t be to big or too small, everything should be right. To help the woman chose her clothes she brings two or three mates or her children with her. Her man is forced to come too, but he plugs Radio5 Live into his ear and listens to the football  while she is choosing. Men know 5 colours, red, blue, red, green, yellow or maybe one or two more; as for a woman there are at least 50 colours, and just as the eskimos have 30 words for snow a woman has 10 words for each colour and its hews.

This brave man, or am I stupid, I just give my wife the debit card and say leave me in peace, so she goes off with a smile with the girls with her, they are young Fashionistas after all. I decided years ago what a wife needed was space to shop and not constant looks at my watch. So that’s what she does and her bulging wardrobe will testify to the wisdom of my decision. When a woman comes home its 2 hours of mix and match to make sure that the new clothes match the old clothes, the husband tries to watch the big match on tv but his wife is prancing around the living room asking “does my bum show” and various other questions. It’s a penalty, and you sit on the edge of your seat, the wife appears and blocks your view, so you miss seeing why  your side was relegated. Normal life in homes up and down the country.

The next day you watch the match again in peace, you remembered to record it on Sky+ and as for the wife she’s gone back to the shop to return ½ of what she bought because it doesn’t match her shoes. And it’s your fault because you wouldn’t give her your debit card again so she could buy cheap £100 shoes.

 

 

All Things Bright and Beautiful ©

By Michael Casey

I haven’t written a non-pain piece in a while, so I’ll try and forget the pain and write something new. We’ve just had the half time holidays and my girls have been playing “shop-girls” as they call it. They even have a sign on their bedroom door saying “open” or “closed”. They steal my wife’s clothes and prance about upstairs. Our eldest daughter has bigger feet than my wife now so that’s a relief as she cannot steal my wife’s shoes any more, but it does not prevent her younger sister from wearing mum’s shoes. There is also the matter of the beret with silver sequins, that’s an absolute Fashion Must.

Me, I’m not fashionable at all, three girls in the house is enough, if I gave in to them they’d be beading my eye brows, I do wear pink on occasions, so that’s as far as I go. If I were maybe 3 stones lighter I’d try other things, I did see a nice cord jacket in Cotton Traders 48R, it was bright blue, Kingfisher Blue, my girls called it a “Clown Jacket”. With encouragement like that what am I supposed to do? I did say if I win Euro millions I WILL buy the jacket. My wife has a nice light brown one, although as she is a woman there will be a more accurate colour name, men don’t do colours. If you think of it its black and white, blue, green, orange as far as men go, but women at least another 40 names for colours. As far as my hair goes, its silver, though a friend used to say I was an old man with white hair. As the colour of our hair change it’s the 7 ages of man.

I remember Ali saying why wasn’t it “Whitemail” instead of blackmail. We are in the Pink if we have good health, I long to be back in the pink myself. We say we hope be back in the black not in the red when we do company accounts, we look for the silver linings. We look look look for the rainbow as the song goes, we may find the crock of gold, all our troubles may be over and we can pack them up in the old kit bag. Hope springs up within us, it is now Spring after all, and as Chance the Gardener said “in the Spring there will be growth.”

 

 

 

Cheese and Chorizo ©

By Michael Casey

The thing about girls is that they steal your stuff, you think they are nice and sweet smelling, but they are not. If they get up before you they’ll raid your side of the fridge and eat your cheese and chorizo. Cheese and chorizo on toast, with hot chocolate to follow, this is how your daughters treat you. This is how my girls treat me.

Yesterday mum bought biscuits, and did she share them? NO. The girls got some but I got none. They were  the ones I really like, its always the ones you really like. I looked high and low, just like an Ah Ha song, but nothing. JJ the wife just laughed at me as I went from pillar to post looking for a biscuit, the Tunnock ones. See this is how the 3 girls in my life treat me, I am biscuitless. Finally after much derision my small daughter showed me  where the biscuits were, a new hiding place, that’s why I could not find them. So I was victorious, I sneaked a biscuit into my pocket and slipped away to eat it in peace.

Shoes are a big thing, so our small daughter walks around the house in mum’s shoes, mine are too big so thankfully they are left alone. However having two daughters who like Textiles, which is the fancy word from school for sewing and making things. If they like textiles then your clothes are not safe, they drag a shirt or two out of the wardrobe and say they want to turn it into something. Jumpers are not safe either, they can cut them down to make a dress  or even a handbag. And as for needles, it’s like having a porcupine in the family, DANGER. You only realise that after you have sat on a needle or two, the wife just says its free acupuncture, no need to asked Dr Hu to pay us a visit, and yes he really is Dr Hu, not Dr Who, but Dr Hu.

Now that our 11year old is 5feet tall, as big as mum, she wants to wear her clothes, but you can imagine what kind of clothes a Shanghai girl wears. So there is debate in Chinese, I cannot understand a word, but SANINGONGA is heard quite often which means no. Which also means my girls, our girls will return to steal from my wardrobe again. In a way it’s like having moths, but instead of holes in your clothes, entire items just disappear. BUT it’s not just the girls, its mum too, she’ll decide that the Fashion Police would not like this item or that item, so it  disappears.  When do I find out? Never, or nearly never, until I walk past a charity shop and see a tent sized item in the window, it’s my clothes.

So if you want to keep the clothes on your back, don’t have daughters. If  you want your favourite food safe in your side of the fridge, the none Chinese side of the fridge, then don’t have daughters. If you want to save your pennies, don’t have a Shanghai wife. But then life would be boring, just make sure you look before you sit.

 

 

 

From A to B from Sat Nav to Blocked Sink  ©

By Michael Casey

Well I hope you are all fine this morning. For us the Sat Nav debate continues. In the old days a Black Taxi would not be seen using an AtoZ, it was beneath his dignity. He’d done the Knowledge and it was all up there in his head. Jack Rozenthal wrote a great play about it, was it 30years ago? Maureen Lipman was his real wife.

Delivery drivers have and egg and bacon butty in one hand dripping egg on to the AtoZ in their other hand while they try and deliver a chest of drawers, with 5 days growth of beard for good measure.

Bus drivers know their route, so once they’ve done it a while its automatic, they know what they are doing. All they have to do is put up with kids trying to use a 3 day old ticket, and not get too high from all the cannabis on the bus. Or remember when they have switched routes because that can lead to strange directions.

Door to door salesmen all those years ago, with the rap at tat tat on the back door had their route carrying the suitcase with samples in. I can vaguely remember one at our back door did my mum buy a clothes brush? But that must be 45 years ago.

So basically we all know what we want and where we are going. Going further back they say people only knew a six block radius around their home. Going to War changed all that as did radio and then more importantly tv. Tv being our eyes on the world, previous to that only Merchant Seaman knew of the world. My own granddad was a merchant sea man, I sometimes wonder did he ever get to Shanghai

Or was it me, his grandson who got there first. Had he visited at the turn of the 19th/20th Century 100years and more ago.

Which brings us back to Sat Nav. Me I use a bus which is fine apart from the pot heads who sit next to you on the bus and all I want to do is puke. My wife is a car driver, so she and our girls love the car. But my wife has borrowed a Sat Nav and likes the ease of it so now she wants one of her own. The result is that I’m being nagged to provide one. You pay, me pay, yes you pay, why me pay, because you are the husband so you pay, no way me pay, you pay you pay yourself, I say. And on the ding dong, sing song goes. Which is the fun part. Me I no pay, use computer I say. You can get perfect directions off the computer all you then have to do is print them off, if our printer was still working we’d be doing that. So really all the wife has to do is copy them down, in English.

She’s  busy with the wok as I talk to you, she’s compromised now, she only wants me to pay half. So I say I’ll be doubly generous and double the share I won’t pay, I’ll pay zero and she can pay 100%. That’s the true spirit of negotiation, now I have another thing to resolve, she’s blocked the sink, so pardon me now as I take the plunge, or rather take the plunger to the sink, no need to use a Sat Nav to get there, its over my shoulder in the next room, just turn left at the tv and go straight on to the sound of bubbles. Love is everywhere don’t you know it, just find it, no Sat Nav required.

 

My other idea is a book of shorts, 40 stories with 40 translations

on facing page plus 40 audio of me reading my stories on usb stick.

Perfect to teach English as a 2nd language, via humour.

As I have written 530+ stories this would be a series of 10 plus books

So we could have Mandarin/Japanese/Urdu/Spanish/Hindi/Russian etc

This would be a world wide hit, angel investors needed

Thanks for reading this, that’s if Junk did not get it. I have come close and not got a cigar many times in my life, so I decided to try you. Radio is the medium for my words, 90 seconds with Michael, could go nationwide, it’s a simple idea, with great words, mine if I can be boastful. I have already recorded 180 of my 530+ shorts, they can be heard at www.michaelgcasey.typepad.com listen in reverse order I have a new microphone now.

Cheerio, Michael Casey

Email michaelgcasey@hotmail.com

www.michaelgcasey.wordpress.com

www.michaelgcasey.typepad.com  to hear 50+ stories

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Michael-Casey/e/B00571G0YC/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_1

8 ebooks and 3 Printed on Paper Books

http://www.amazon.com/Michael-Casey/e/B00571G0YC/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_1

 

Piano Girl

that’s me at home writing while my daughter plays piano, she want to be a Vet when she grows up, as for me I’d just like a bigger house if I can sell some books.

 


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