Tag Archives: Urban Survival Skills

Complaisant

if you try to please everybody, you end up pleasing nobody

Unless you are a sociopath or a narcissist you will tend to want to make other people happy.  If you are in a romantic relationship you will tend to want to please your partner.  If you are a child you will tend to want to please your parents, teachers, and just about every other adult you interact with.  There are exceptions; we all have bad days when we couldn’t give a fuck, there are some people we don’t care about at all, and there are some other people we dislike so much that we are at the other end of the people-pleasing spectrum.

And then there are those of us to get sucked into the role of a people-pleaser, continually doing what other people want us to do, always saying yes when we should be saying no, and trying to find ways to ingratiate ourselves with people who take us for granted.  We become the epitome of a people-pleasing fool because there is something in our past that made us eager to please someone in authority over us, (and / or someone we loved), for the sake of our own safety, sanity, or just because that was the only way we would ever get any attention or affection.

For a lot of my life I was trapped in the role of a people-pleaser, because my feelings of self-worth were so low as to be almost non-existent, and I was always looking to others to validate myself.  My self-esteem was whatever other people told me it was, and that was doubly so for women I liked and / or was in a relationship with.  I was a prisoner.

Care about what other people think and you will always be their prisoner.  ~  Lao Tzu

Once someone consciously or subconsciously realises just how much they are being taken for a fool, then they have some chance of escaping that submissive, subservient, complaisant role.  And, other people will not like that at all.  I stopped being a people-pleasing serf a little while ago, and some said a lot of unpleasant things to and about me.  Yet the people who truly cared for me were happy for me, and encouraged me to go on steadfastly walking the true warriors path of independence, courage, confidence, determination, and kindness.

Some say they exist to please their master / mistress.  And that if they didn’t take care of everyone else in their life, then who else would?  All I know is that you can’t please everyone, so you’ve got to please yourself.

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

 

just because she enjoys being submissive doesn’t mean she is someone’s doormat

Random Jottings ~ Healthy Routines and Rituals

the secret of your future is hidden in your daily routine

~

exercise hard and vigorously six days a week

~

when you eat is as important as what you eat

breakfast around 07:30

lunch at one o’clock

and dinner at seven in the evening

don’t ever eat late at night

~

try not to get into the routine of drinking every night

~

rise and go to bed at the same time every night and morning

including at weekends and on vacation

~

get into the habit of walking instead of driving everywhere

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

 

aim to walk 10,000 paces a day

every damn day

 

What Are You?

accept no one else’s definition of your life, but define yourself

Shakespeare didn’t think much of money-lenders

Who are you?  The true answer to that isn’t as easy to give as some may believe.  You might tell me your name, and then you might tell me what you do; butcher, baker, candlestick-maker, rich-man, poor-woman, beggar-man, thief…..  In fact we are so wound up in ‘what we do’ that in times past a person’s ‘family name’ might well have been the trade or craft they were in.  Hence; Baker, Cooper, Thatcher, Smith, Wright.

So, we might know your name and your main occupation, but that’s just what you are.  It isn’t who you are.  Your name and what you do to earn a crust aren’t who you are.  If a name was so important then why do half of the people in the western world change their name?  And if what you do is so important, why do so very many people have a career change at some time in their lives, and why are so many dissatisfied with their career, profession, job?

Your name and what you do to make a living are not who you are ~ but perhaps it’s what you are, your role, the part that you play in society.  That’s if you accept that what you do is just a role, not who you are at all.  We are all but players on life’s stage.

All the world’s a stage, and all the men and women merely players: they have their exits and their entrances; and one man in his time plays many parts…..  ~  Shakespeare

My career was in International Banking and Finance.  I worked hard at it, and I was well remunerated in return.  Was I satisfied with that?  Did I think that what I did was important?  Not really.  I worked to make a living, to have some self-respect, and my own self-respect was why I was good at it.  I’ve played some other roles, and I was very good at those too.

But now, I don’t play a role anymore.  Today, right now, I am just me.  And, like everything I’ve done in the past I am determined to be good at being me, the very ‘best’ man I can possibly be.

Others may have loftier callings; perhaps they want to be a doctor, priest, therapist, teacher ~ but before all of that I would first urge them to be themselves, and to be the very best at being themselves that they can possibly be.

Some say that we should all conform to what society expects of us.  And that those in authority have a right to tell us what to do.  All I know is that you should always be yourself, no matter what they say.

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talk talk.net

be the best you can be

but be yourself

no matter what they say

 

90% of Contractors Suck

do not ever pay for work that isn’t done right and completed on time

what the Arc would have looked like if Noah had used a contractor

Stop letting contractors screw you over.  There is NO excuse for work that isn’t done right, finished on budget, and completed on time.  I’ve heard it again and again that some contractor totally fucked up a job, or charged far too much, or did work that didn’t need doing, left an utter mess behind them after they finished, caused far more damage than they were asked to come in and fix, never finished the job at all, didn’t do the job they were asked to do, or didn’t even turn up…..

This is not a new story for me, so why am I bothering to flog this comatose horse?  Well a couple of friends of mine, and another couple of nice people whose blogs I follow, have all had problems with contractors in the past few days.  In my expert opinion 90% of contractors of every ilk from decorators, to plumbers, to electricians, to garage mechanics, to moving men et al, are utterly useless, partly skilled, dishonest, lazy, misogynistic jerks.

So how to avoid being totally ripped off?

  • Do not hire a contractor based on somebody else’s unsupported recommendation.  Especially do not hire anyone recommended by another contractor; say your realtor.
  • Do not ever, ever hire a friend, or a friend of a friend, to do ANY work for you.
  • Do not ever hire a contractor without first having a totally clear picture of the work you want doing, when you want it done by, how much you are going to pay, and when.  If you don’t know any of this stuff, GO AWAY AND FIND OUT!
  • Do not ever hire a contractor who can’t show you a current copy of their appropriate certification, and customer references.  Check these out, and never just by making a phone call.
  • Do not hire a contractor who can’t give you a firm written quote, on a proper letter-head.  If possible get three quotes, (if it’s a big job then you must have at least two firm quotations)
  • Do not ever pay a contractor before they have started work, and never ever pay them in full until the work is completed to your satisfaction.  Agree stage payments if appropriate.  Go over everything your contractor has done with a fine tooth comb.  Your word is the final word!
  • Do not ever, ever allow an unsupervised contractor into your property. And, ensure they are watched over 100% of the time thereafter.
  • DO NOT hire day rate illegal aliens under any circumstances.  And don’t hire anyone who isn’t fluent in your language.
  • Learn some DIY stuff.  Learn a hell of a lot of DIY stuff.  It is always easier, cheaper, and better to do the job yourself than hire some utterly useless, partly skilled, dishonest, lazy, misogynistic jerk to do the work for you.  And if you have some idea about how to actually do a bit of say; decorating, then you are in a far better position to control your idiot contractor.
  • Finally; do not be a woman.  All contractors think women are easy marks.  If you are a woman then follow the suggestions above with the utmost regard.

This is your job, your money, your home, your safety.  If your plumber floods your home, your electrician sets fire to your home, or you home just blows up……  then ultimately it is YOUR fault.  Do not let ANYONE tell you how you should go about dealing with a contractor.  (except me)

Some say that they have had a really good contractor.  And that not all contractors are bad.  All I know is that anyone who says they have had one good contractor will also have had three utter disasters.

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

some decorators can’t even varnish a floor without making a mess of it

Random Jottings ~ Jealousy

jealousy is self-inflicted torment

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true jealousy is both love and hate

you can’t have one without the other

~

‘I’m not jealous…..’ she averred

right before she totally trashed his Porsche

~

jealousy is a symptom of passionate insecurity

~

if you get into a passionate long-distance relationship

then expect to get very jealous

~

you can’t talk to a jealous woman with a shotgun in her hand

~

jealousy isn’t ever about real love it’s really about deep insecurity

~

actually, it’s perfectly acceptable to be jealous if your partner is cheating on you

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

real jealousy hurts

and there is never any cure

sometimes staring at the sea helps a bit

How to Stop Wasting Time

stop wasting valuable time on worthless people places and things

Everyone, and I do mean everyone, wastes a hell of a lot of precious time.

If you have been working from home, or not working at all because you’ve been in lockdown, or just got back to work; then the amount of time you waste every day should have been thrown into sharp focus.  For example, most people who work from home manage to get a full week’s work done in about 20 hours instead of 40.  And, if you have just gone back to work you might realise just how often you are interrupted, or have to do utterly pointless time-wasting crap.  The worst is that you may have been utterly idle during lockdown and filled your entire life with utterly pointless crap.

So, here are a few very obvious suggestions to allow you to have more time to do what’s important to you;

  • Make some lists instead of charging around aimlessly and forgetting things;  a to-do list and shopping list are very efficient and helpful.
  • Stop chatting with people who call at your desk.  Usually they are time wasting jerks.
  • Don’t go to most meetings.  In my experience meetings of more than 3 people are a complete waste of time ~ on-line meetings doubly so.  If you are not the most vital person in a meeting you probably don’t need to go.  Just read the minutes instead.
  • Stop multi-tasking.  Do one job from start to finish, concentrate on that task, and don’t try to do something else at the same time.  That means don’t read emails or surf the internet when you’re supposed to be doing something important.
  • Finish what you’ve started.  Unfinished tasks are a congregation of fighting alligators in your mind, bothering the hell out of you and stopping you from really being effective and efficient.
  • Be neat, clean, and tidy.  Some people think living and working in a mess makes them productive ~ it doesn’t, it just means you’re living in a swamp.
  • Do the very simple ‘couple of minutes’ jobs first, get them out of the way, and then do the worst, nastiest, and most difficult task ~ from start to finish.
  • Stop answering the phone, unless you’re expecting a call.  Calls out of the blue are hardly ever important.
  • When you are not at your job, you are not at your job.  So forget it and forget the people there.  Your employer only owns your time for your exact contracted number of hours.
  • Take all your breaks, and get outside into the fresh air and sunshine if you possibly can.

Some say the work-life balance is important.  And some go into the ‘office’ when they should be at the beach.  All I know is too much work will kill you.

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

When you’re up to your ass in alligators it’s hard to remember that you’re supposed to be draining the smegging swamp

Random Jottings ~ Infidelity and Casual Sex

no normally healthy men and women can be ‘just good friends’

~

he could tell she was easy

the plunging neckline, short skirt, and no lingerie was a giveaway

~

no matter how careful you are, you will always get caught

~

the best apology for cheating is changed behaviour,

it never happens

~

it takes two people to make a relationship work

but just one promiscuous person to make it fail

~

bad marriages don’t cause infidelity

promiscuous infidelity causes bad marriages

~

‘I love you…’ she said’

get in the back seat…’ he replied

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

 

casual sex is never just a one time thing

If You Have an Overheating Car

f you have to love your car for it to love you back

the radiator is the square black thing at the front

An American friend of mine is on a long toad trip, and she’s worrying a bit because her car is on the verge of overheating on long mountain climbs.  Well, as a guy well-used to running old cars I personally wouldn’t worry so much unless the thing actually boiled, and then I’d let it cool down completely, top up the radiator, and carry on.  (BTW, always carry a can of oil and some engine coolant in the back of your vehicle.  And learn some basic car mechanics.)

There are 4 main reasons that a car will overheat;

  1. It’s leaking coolant through a hose joint, (or the radiator itself, or the water pump).
  2. The thermostat is faulty.
  3. The electric fan isn’t working.
  4. The water pump is busted, (or the drive-belt to the water pump is broken, or slipping).

Three of those faults are easy to check for.  #1 there will be a pool of coolant under the car when it’s been parked for a while. #2 the radiator will be cool when the engine is hot.  #3 with the car parked and the engine running the fan should come on when the engine gets hot.  Trust me you will be able to hear it when it’s working.

#4 needs a mechanic, and as water pumps almost last forever it’s unlikely to be busted unless it’s an older car.  In which case check to see if it’s ever been replaced.  This fault is the least likely.  If the pulley is turning the pump is working.  If your AC and electrics are working it isn’t a drive-belt problem.

Actually there is a 5th reason, you are working the car very, very hard indeed, like climbing up a mountain.  There is a limit to how hard you can work anything or anyone, and if you pass that limit things will start to go wrong.

Faults 1, 2, 3, and 5 are very easily cured, (9 times out of 10).

The trouble is few people know much about car mechanics, and if you take it into a shop you are likely to be stuffed with the cost of the most expensive repair possible, so learn just a little practical car mechanics.  It’s a few hours and will save you a lot of time, money, and worries.  (Sometime your car isn’t overheating at all the gauge on the dashboard is giving a false reading.)

(On older cars there is always the possibility that the cooling system is furred-up, in which case it would benefit from flushing.  Here’s how https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s–5ft5YiHg ).

Treat your car well, and it will repay the favour.

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

the radiator is the black thing at the front

Looking Better after Lockdown

it could have been worse, the liquor stores might have been closed

Now that I’m regularly out and about again after a period of government imposed solitary confinement at home, I’ve noticed just how manky some people are looking.  It’s not their fault, being subject to lockdown and being made to work from home does bad things to your health, your looks, and your well-being.  It’s a lack of sunshine, fresh air, exercise ~ and too much junk food, processed food, comfort eating, too much booze, too many cigarettes, and for some too much reliance on drugs.  Add to that the lack of proper sleep, irregular hours, lazing around most of the day in sweats or night-attire, not being able to get to a hairdresser…..

Face it after a period of lockdown, and while we are working at home, it’s possible that we don’t feel or look at our very best.  I know I didn’t, and I know just how much weight I put on.

It’s pretty simple to get back to looking and feeling great;

  • Get out in the sunshine and fresh air as much as you can.
  • Get some exercise.  Walk the 10,000 steps a day.  Learn some yoga.  Use free exercises such as squats, push ups.  Look here’s a link to a 20 minute home workout video.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oKfNUOWuZV8
  • Stop drinking so much every day and every night.  Have two or three totally booze-free days every week.
  • Stop smoking all together, forever.  Smoking makes you look old, you stink, it ruins your health.  Smoking will kill you.
  • Stop comfort eating.  Don’t eat just because you’re bored, stressed, lonely, or sad.
  • Stop eating processed food, or eat much less processed food if you can’t get to a good store as often as you’d like.
  • Stop shoveling your food in with both hands, eat mindfully and slowly, chew your food properly.
  • Eat more fresh fruit and vegetables.  Salads are brilliant at this time of year.
  • Drink more cool, clear, cleansing water.  (Fruit juice counts too.)

I am back on a health and fitness programme again, after letting myself go during lockdown.  It’s so depressing being in solitary confinement that I found it hard to keep up good habits.  But you know what?  It doesn’t take more than a week or so to turn things around to a better life.

Some say that just one bottle of wine won’t hurt.  And, that potato chips go so well with wine.  All I know is that the dictum of a healthy mind in a healthy body is the real truth.

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

 

yoga is bloody good for you

Random Jottings ~ Sucess

start each day badly, and you wave success goodbye

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to be fulfilled, turn work into play

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Expert:  a complete drip under pressure

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never trust an expert who has never done a proper hard day’s work

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emotional intelligence is an essential ingredient of a balanced successful life

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to be successful, to stand out from the crowd, do the exact opposite of what most people are doing

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

 

getting drunk only turns you into an overnight success in your own eyes

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