Monday, 4 January 2016


I'm a veteran of bravado.
Pretending to be confident
when really I'm shitting myself.
It happens all the time.
I may look like a mature, poised, sophisti-cated adult
but underneath the suave exterior
is a terrified toddler
totally convinced
that anything that can go wrong will go wrong
because I'm really not up to the job
I'm floundering wildly.
Then I put on my old-stager's face
I've done this a million times, it says
I could do it in my sleep
do it standing on my head
it's child's play
hoping no one sees through me
hoping no one smells a rat
hamming it up for all I'm worth
as I stoically muddle through.


  1. Dont you think that we all justmuddle along...even the Prof does that from time to time.......

  2. John: We do, we do! Rumour has it that even the people running our biggest organisations are simply muddling through, never quite knowing if their decisions will be productive or calamitous.

  3. I think a lot of people are like that, secretly!

  4. Fortunately Andy and I don't have much responsibility nowadays. Our main job is to be happy, thus setting a good example for the young folks by showing that old age can be fun.

  5. I knew what I was doing when I worked...and people took me seriously: once retired and decidedly laid back people do not - and take offence when their attempts to con me meet with the bared teeth and the barbed tongue.
    My fault,it seems, for misleading them...

  6. Jenny: I'm sure they are. Sometimes it's utterly transparent, like the Floods Minister talking total bollocks about flood prevention.

    Jean: Well, Andy certainly knows what he's doing when it comes to DIY! No phoney bravado there. But yes, once someone stops working, there's not much need for it.

  7. Helen: Unfortunately once you're retired, a lot of people see you as (a) too old to be good at anything (b) too out-of-touch to be good at anything. Sometimes they get a nasty shock when determined individuals like yourself give as good as they get.

  8. What scares you? People or tasks?

  9. When I'm facilitating workshops (like yesterday) I'm always looking around the grownup for it sure ain't me. But gawd, it is.


  10. you have just described every political candidate now running for the american presidency.
    i jest?
    a tiny tiny tiny bit perhaps.
    otherwise true.

  11. Bijoux: Good question. I guess it's mainly tasks, though it can also be people who set the tasks, if I know they're usually quite demanding.

    www: Exactly. I'm meant to be a mature adult fully in charge of what I'm doing, but inside I feel more like a fumbling and inexperienced apprentice.

  12. Tammy: Oh, you're right. The same applies to most of the political candidates over here. They're full of fashionable soundbites and folksy wisdom, but what do they actually know about running public services or turning round failing neighbourhoods?

  13. or dealing with nuclear proliferation?
    dear GOD!
    i'm thinking we're all in trouble. :)

  14. Tammy: Jeez, the mind boggles! I can just see some gung-ho right-wing politician unleashing a few nuclear missiles to "teach somebody a lesson".

  15. You are describing the vast majority of humanity.

  16. Ramana: I've always suspected that's the case. How many of us are truly on top of what we're doing? And how many of us are simply leaping into action and hoping for the best?