Don’t criticise the critters – 16th May 2022

From Eric Barker’s newsletter:

How do we make love last? A lot of people fear that if they raise issues with their partner it can lead to arguing and that will end the relationship. So they stay silent…

But it is doubleplusungood wrongthink to believe that complaining is a problem. The research shows bottling up actually ends more marriages than arguing. Complaining, in the big picture, is actually a positive – it gets issues out in the open where they can be resolved. What leads to divorce isn’t complaining; it’s criticism.

From Plays Well With Others:

Complaining is actually healthy for a marriage. It’s criticism that predicts divorce. Complaining is when I say you did not take the trash out. Criticism is when I say you did not take the trash out because you’re a horrible person. The first is about an event, the second is about your fundamental personality. To keep your relationship solid, turn your criticisms into complaints. Address the event, not the person.

To say that criticism is bad for a relationship is like saying “The Grand Canyon is kinda big.” True but insufficient. Researcher John Gottman found it was one of four things that predicted divorce 83.3% of the time.

So don’t be afraid to raise that issue — but don’t make it personal. Address the problem, not their character. This leads to conversations that actually make your relationship stronger.

Whilst I’m inclined to agree with the above sentiment, I thought about how this has played out in my life. Another factor that came into play for me was low self-esteem. So that when my partner may have been complaining, I took it personally as criticism. This is particularly what ended my marriage with Bronwyn, along with a whole bunch of other factors that added up to become too much for me to deal with.

I’m much better with this these days but it can still rear its ugly head from time to time, though I’m usually aware of it even if I can’t put my finger on it.

Time Of The Gypsies – 9th May 2022

I’ll take my shoe and crush you
What will my spirit do without wings?
He takes and he smiles
The tap is left running

A sheep led through mud
The house will be white like milk
The working man gets the turkey
Talking to the turkey

What did he do to my daughter?
He ruined my daughter!
Winged sunny bird, winged sunny bird
Follow my lead, what trouble brought you here?

Special lime for the girl brings a smile
Who will carry such a sack?
Fire is the basis of everything
Do you know how to kiss?

Mother of the forest, mother of the rock
White as milk
Like Richard Gere
A turkey tied to a foot

I can hold my breath
And then the curtain comes down
The turkey makes a run
You’ve got a magnet on your lips

There’s a ghost at work
A mirage, take the case and run
The smoke came out his ears
No money, no faith, you army bastard
I’ll pull out your eyes

He wants to slaughter me and left me hanging
Is there a place for me?
The moonlight smiles and I cannot jump my shadow
And I cannot die

The bells are ringing, that I cannot die
Who are you to hang yourself?
Love will hang us all
Bring me home and tell my story

A crying donkey
Play another song, too old to dance in the park
Dinner is a scene and the night a dream
Burning in bed, a mountain fairy mother

God gave, God took, what can I do?
I am an army bastard
The water spirits swinging fire
Blood risen floating desire

A slap in the face for the seeing
Angelic baptism
The champion is here, the protagonist in a white feather fanfare
Money for the madhouse

How does this hang together?
Your love is not worthy of my daughter
Look upon her beauty, all white
Trouble is coming, you’ll kiss my feet

A ride initiated, even lost my shoes
Mother save me
For the last time – money or life
Do you want my soul?

A turkey on the table
Damn all you dead and living
I’ll lift up your walls until the rain comes in
Don’t cry, mother

Can you separate the earth from the sky?
Bloodletting to save a life
Exorcise the demons with its power
Where are you hiding?

You should be kissing my feet
The journey is just starting
There are angels and devils in my house
Unsure which is witch

Best enjoyed whilst watching the first thirty minutes of Emir Kusturica’s ‘Time of the Gypsies’

Space Invaders – 8th May 2022

Give us a great galactic invader
Intent on total human destruction
Forget past indiscretions and focus
Efforts toward united instruction
Now imagine there was no invader
But we treat each other with that in mind
Remove hunger, poverty, crime and corruption
Everything that has made us unkind
Is it just too much to wish for?
Something that we can never achieve
Put our faith in the love of each other
The one truth that we need to believe

Axe It – 5th May 2022

Dear friends, let me hit you with my left fist
Otherwise, I’ll be forced to hit you with the right
These two faces are chasing the same things
And they’ve already rigged the fight
There’s a third choice never presented
It’s always hidden from view
To take an axe and lop off those fists
Remove the threats that bind you

Not Today – 2nd May 2022

The smiling reaper taps his fingers
Returning the smile is all you can do
Rise from your slumber shouting ‘Not today!’
Send down death, back to the blue
Bounce out of bed, your time is short
Thousands today will be sent away
Take the chances offered to you
You’ve got the gift of another day