Be Yourself, Be Positive.

Be true to yourself.

With a half full glass.

Never get worried if you ain’t got enough brass.

Write it down and say it loud.

Always remember you’re uniquely individual, be proud.

Never become just one of the crowd.

Challenge yourself every day however small.

So tomorrow you can hold your head up and walk tall.


If music be the food of love, why is my fridge empty…

Every now and again you listen to an interview with a music legend on the radio that gets you thinking. That happened today with Gary Numan on BBC Radio 5. Gary mentioned that Billboard would not classify his album as being electronica, yes I was shocked also. But on the other hand I was also not surprised that album charts are specific and limited to a narrow genre.

Music charts used to be representative of the music culture of the day. Eclectic, diverse, inventive and an indication of the music fashion and culture of the day. Every decade brought a new genre, from blues, rock and roll, punk, glam rock, heavy metal, New Romantics, house, garage and rap. Each new generation defying the last to creative a new sound representative of the youth and social culture of the day. Rebelling against older generations to put their generation on the map. Creativity and imagination in all aspects of music, fashion and youth culture.

Is this still the case today? Please someone let me know? What music and fashion has defined the first two decades of a new century that will capture the imagination of future generations and the youth of the last two decades as they look back and reminisce?

Either I am blinkered to it or my theory is correct. Again please let me know?

Music seems to have become very commercialised. Rather than new music genres being inverted and devised by the up and coming generations it’s become more about how it’s delivered to the consumer. Let me explain, to get the new music it was a physical getting to the music shops mixing with like minded and also diverse individuals in purchasing music. Social interaction and seeing and being seen. Now it’s all about how you download and consume music. From iTunes, YouTube to Spotify and other such platforms of virtual music, that’s disposable. Lock load and listen followed by leave, lost and forgotten. Don’t get me wrong there are is some key music stars out there, the lines of Adele, Rihanna, and Ed Sheeran to name but a few. Well crafted hits with high production values, but is it inspiring innovative and representative of today’s youth? Fashion is going through similar process, buy on line rather than physically going to boutiques and independent stores meeting people and socially interacting with them. Fashion now is cross generational and does not define an individual group or have cultural diversity. Brand names are more important or cheap and disposable. Again commercialisation, marketing and brand recognition being more important that individualism and making a mark for your generation.

Technology and the digital revolution is the new culture, virtual social interaction is the modern way.

So am I surprised Gary Numan isn’t able to fit into a category that he was instrumental in inventing in the early 80’s, well no.

I am however hopeful that once the next generations realise they can be creative and make music that is diverse innovative and for their generation then maybe just maybe culture will again develop rather than stay in a state of technological limbo that we have seen over the last 18 years or so. Digital technology should be their tool and not just a dictator for commercial opportunities.

Let music be the food of love again.

The Stars at my feet, my thoughts in the sky.

“Remember to look up at the stars and not down at your feet. Try to make sense of what you see and wonder about what makes the universe exist. Be curious.”

–Stephen Hawking

I remember as a child, my brother and I talking about space and the stars wondering what was out there. We’d talk for hours ponding life on other planets. We always seem to end the conversation on how far you would have to go to the end of the universe. We decided that you would end up at a wall that would stop you traveling any further. We were happy with our explanation till we started wondering what was on our the other side of the wall. The mind is an amazing tool with the ability to devise, create, explore and analyse life, the planets and the stars. We sometimes have to remember that with science-fiction there is even more to discover with science fact.

Stephen Hawking looked beyond the confines of his wheelchair and the planet. He was not constrained by disability. He was admired and respected for his work ambition and his motivation and determination to get others to explore space and the universe through science.

Part of his legacy should be from us all looking past our own limitations and exploring what we can do rather than what we can’t do. More importantly we should see in others their capabilities strengths and skills through encouraging them and celebrating their achievements. Disabilities whether physical or mental do not define us, our abilities do.

Next time you look up at the stars or imagine the starts and what is beyond our planet, remember we can all escape our own personal constraints.

Enjoy pondering life and the universe everyone, there are boundless possibilities and no one is excluded.

Miss: individual and diverse.

Missile we had an explosive relationship.

Missing the one I wanted to find but never found.

Misspent we did some meaningless things that were just a waste of time.

Misspeak she always spoke out of turn.

Misshape I loved her perfect personality more than her body.

Missionary she worked for an employment agency and said she had the perfect position for me.

Misstatements I never quite knew what she meant.

Missteering she just drove me around the bend.

Misspoke she was a foreign language student. 

Misspelt she confused me with her text messages. 

Mission accomplished.

What’s your favourite Miss……?



I want to be me: Freedom for the individual.

Mark my words I hear you say

Men make their own history

That’s not what women say

A world of equality between women and man

They both earn the bread and butter

But only one is perceived to earn the jam.


Religion is the opium of the masses

They never taught me that in any of my classes

If you haven’t got faith in me

Why should I have faith in you?


We’re all supposed to be the same

But if you haven’t got money

You haven’t got a brain

You’ll never be entered into our social game.


The only antidote to mental suffering is physical pain

But physical pain is suffering in mental science

Wellbeing is not from material wealth

But inclusion, not being put on the shelf


To take everyone more seriously

We have to work harder

Collectively we should all shoulder the burden

With a bit of give and take

For an equal society, we shall then make


Workers of the world unite

One global corporation can’t be right

We all own the same phone

All drive the same car

And cultural diversity is treated like a scar


We all want to be normal

No individuality trait

Then we all complain bitterly

When we’re classed as standard and not great


Academic standards we all have to meet

Passing those exams

Like a Google program

So we’re all the same

Every woman and every man


Equality is the new opium of the masses

Breaking down the walls between the sexes and classes

Let’s all be the same, an homogenous bunch

No more differentiation, no more credit crunch


Individuality is a thing of the past

Creativity we knew, it wouldn’t last

Whether a woman or a man, old or young

We’ll become a single class. where you’ll have to hold your tongue


A word of caution from being hermetically the same

With no competition

No profit no loss

Or growth to explore

Life we be a terrible bore

No sexual diversity

No goals to achieve

No new job to start no old job to leave

Running around in an hamster wheel

No joy, no laughter, no children’s squeal

But we’d all be the same, come on now get real.


I don’t mind equality in all the right places

Life would be dull if we all had the same faces

Rejoice in our individuality

Our quirks faults and foibles

Much more interesting than the communist bible


These opinions are mine

Some of them you may greet

Other will make you spit through your teeth

I am I, and you are you

Let’s all live together

In total harmony and piece

If you don’t bloody agree with me, then call the police.


By Mark Cyst

The solitary task of writing; mind over matter.

In my own little bubble away from the rigours of a professional career I can escape into a magical world. Writing is a solitary task of extracting thoughts, ideas and words from my grey matter then transferring them to a digital word document. Other writers will know exactly what I mean as they too will be pitched against a word document in a solo battle of mind and words. Sometimes the mind wins, other times the words defeat us. But either way it can be a lonely road to travel.

From my own personal point of view until what I have written is written, it stays with me. I sometimes give a glimpse to others on what I’m writing but never pass on the story or contents of what I’m writing till the first draft is complete. Why I ask myself. Why indeed.  Well there are many reasons behind withholding the details.

Writing as I stated is a solitary and what can be perceived as a lonely task. But it isn’t and it is. Confused, well possibly and maybe even I’m confused.  It’s a task undertaken as an individual done primarily for me and me alone. But it’s also a battle between me and my inner mind.  Therefore there are two of us involved you could say my head and my heart; but more like my physical me and my spiritual me. They are pitted against each other in conflict in harmony and in creative thinking.

Detailing my written work to others before I complete it can be nerve racking. The fear that they interpose ideas and comments redirecting me down a different route to the one I’m on. Like a satnav that insist you will get to your destination quicker if you take road B, then five minutes later redirecting you down road C. Not that I’m saying I know the right route, but being selfish in my writing I need to make the decisions. After the first draft I let others read it and listen to criticism and suggestions. But during the initial writing project it’s me against my mind. And as they say “three is a crowd”.

So solitary is not necessarily a journey in pure isolation but a journey with oneself. On reading blogs it has become more apparent to me others writers are also on a voyage of the mind:  tackling of conflicts with their inner self, exploring their emotions, fears victories and their worries.

Creativity comes in many guises and where ideas come from is complex and difficult to pin point. But the strange workings of the mind are so individual and intricate to each one of us, that our resultant ramblings and written words also become individual and specific to the writer.

Writing for many seems to be an outlet and escape valve for our inner workings. Writing is a release of deep seated and random thoughts. Removing them is a mental task like taking work for the in pile, to the out pile, then archiving them. The sharing process extricates our problems, exercises the mind and releases pent up emotions. For people who have difficulty in being able to confide in someone in a conversation, the writing process may offer this outlay. Blogs and bloggers can therefore become the consoler and confidante.

So what start’s out to be a lonely isolated solitary endeavour, is in fact our minds communicating with the world. Our mind and our writing should be like a five course meal, sometimes simple and little sometimes more substantial. Occasionally bitter and savoury or sweet, but like any meal it should have a start middle and end and be rewarding to the cook/writer and the eater/reader.

See how the mind wanders, I now need food.

Barney Bradshaw: Double Dare.

Kids are kids

A dare is a dare

It make our parents pull out their hair

We push the boundaries

We run in front of a bus

Making the passengers swear and cuss

We’re growing up

Discovering something new

Even if our parents turn the air blue

If we’re foaming at the mouth

Bleeding, cuts, brushes and broken bones

Please parents, BLOODY leave us alone


The Inn of happiness: or how to select the perfect pub.

Inn Somnia, the only pub where you can’t get a night cap.

Inn Candescent, a pub where there’s no light entertainment

Inn Consolable, when you can’t stop crying into your beer.

Inn Decisive, there’s just too much choice.

Inn Dependent, buying my own pint.

Inn Credulity, it’s how much.

Inn Congruous, when you want a rum and Tizer.

Inn Ocuous, this looks like a harmonious safe place for a drink

Inn Toxicated, when you need just one more.

Inn Sane, this drink tastes like a Paris River.

Inn Complete, surely it can’t be “time gentlemen please”….

By Duncan Disorderly

Barney Bradshaw: Snow rant


Wonderful stuff unless it’s too slushy and wet, or too icy. And at all costs it must be avoided if it’s yellow. It doesn’t seem to take much snow to create chaos and panic even when it’s not yellow.

One good thing in a way is that your schools can get closed for the fear of accidents, slipping or throwing snow balls in the school playground and the risk of the schools being blamed or sued by parents. This on top of not being able to get to school with the snow on the roads, for us kids and teachers alike hoping it stays shut so we can all have a snow day.

Has it always been this way? No one clearing paths or gritting them and everyone in danger from slipping; banned from throwing snow balls and not being allowed to slide on the snow in case it makes it slippy for others? Or is it because of those lawyer ads or the telly. You know the accident not yours so you’re entitled to thousands of pounds in compensation, type adverts. I wonder, could I make a claim for every time my brother pushes me over? Then again how could I get money from him when all he has is student debt?

The beauty of time travel is that I can go back and check. Why would I want to check? Well considering all the times my parents and grandparents tell me “in my day it was…” you know always having a comment, always being right while putting me down and the same time. Parents!

Well on investigating I found out that back in the 70’s when it snowed, schools didn’t close. Kids lived near and walked to school. If they fell or slipped or were even pushed and got hurt it was their own fault. Throwing snow balls was almost expected to happen as long as you didn’t aim and throw them at other kid’s parents or teachers, you got away with it. It was almost the same in the 80’s. And shop keepers and people were still allowed to clear the snow away from the front of their shop or house. None of this, “if you modify the path and someone slips it’s your fault and you’ll be fined” you know “if there’s blame there’s a claim”.

Kids back them might not have been able to take selfies in the snow but they sure had a good time being free to slip, slide, fall and throw. God don’t you just hate it when your parents are right.



Barney Bradshaw: A journey of youth.

a barney

Who am I..

Hi everyone, you’re probably wondering who the hell I am. Come to think of it I often hear “who the hell do you think you are”, or a regular basis. Maybe I need to tell people closer to home who I am.

Well I’m a 12 year old lad living in the north with my parents in the Flying Scotsman pub. I also have an older brother who’s at university. I’m sure I’ll tell you more about him in one of my later blogs.

Am I a typical young lad? I hope not, I just want to be me. “You should be more like your brother” nar; he is he and I am me. I don’t want to blend in with the crowd, although sometimes this is a safe thing to do. I also don’t want to stand out in a crowd, they tend to be show offs a bit like one of my two best makes Kal. Then again he has a blue mohawk so he’s going to stand out. I don’t want to be average or even labelled as normal, standard or common I just want to be accepted as me Barney.

So why the blog, why should anyone want to read ramblings? Well for my age I’m well-travelled and experienced beyond my years. And no I’m not really a self-opinionated old fart! I’m knowledgeable because I’ve travelled and experienced more than any other lad of my age or even older ones. Why because I’m a traveller in time, and not in physical distance. “Yeah right, lad you’re a nutter”.

Want to know more? Well, just keep popping back and reading my blogs.