Saturday, September 20, 2008

Getting to Know Me

For no apparent reason our Sky digital receiver box has decided to stick on standby and nothing we can do, or the nice support staff on the end of the help line can do either. We have been advised to get a new one. The man on the end of the line suggested we try a local dealer rather than have one of their men come out and see us. We did think for a moment of taking the opportunity to upgrade to a HD package but it was more than we could afford right now.

So last night was a quiet night. I might have switched off the TV and found something else to do anyway, but I didn’t like the decision forced upon me.

I decided to pop along to Blockbuster to see if there was Mel type DVD I could chill out with. I picked up one or two that sounded interesting. I wasn’t looking for girly romance. I wasn’t looking for scary horror. I’m not sure I was up to grisly murders and who-dunnits. That kind of narrowed the list. What really put me off many of the ones I picked up was the box on the cover that informs you of strong language, level of nudity and sustained violence. Just about everything I thought I might like had lots of strong language and violence and stuff. I actually stood in the line for all of five minutes before I realised the one I held in my hand also included “sustained torture”. I put it back in the shelf.

I lived for a while with my parents after returning from working in Cyprus for five years. It was a mixed faith kind of street. The corner shops were owned and run by Pakistani gentlemen. One of the shops was a video rental place. We used to hire videos quite often. The man in the shop got to know my tastes over the months. It was nothing I said, but the comments from my mother, “Our Mel wouldn’t like that film…too much swearing.” He used to carefully select a half dozen or so films just for me and keep them aside until I visited the shop. I never really needed to browse because I would be presented with this pile of videos he had vetted! I have to confess that they were mostly PG certificates with the occasional 12 certificate thrown in. 18 certificate films never made it into the selection.

I missed that last night! I missed popping around to the corner shop to find out what my Pakistani friend had decided was suitable for me! I miss someone knowing me that well and looking out for me.

We seem to live in a society where people don’t seem to know people. I bought a book a couple of weeks ago. “Just Walk Across the Room” by Bill Hybels. I shouldn’t need a book to tell me that I need to walk across a room and talk to people. I certainly shouldn’t need one to tell me how to walk across a room. Having said that, I have been trying to walk across a few rooms in my work place. I have joined a couple of working groups looking at aspects of our working day. Partly it is because I feel strongly about the particular issues, but also it is to do with allowing people to get to know me better. Whether these connections I am making will lead to deeper relationships and challenging conversations I don’t know. It just feels good.

Incidentally, this morning I was complaining to my husband about the over abundance of films with too much nudity and swearing. His reaction was to fling off the covers, swing his arms and legs about, in the bed, dressed in very little, and chant “Bugger, bugger, bugger.”

“You mean, like, that kind of nudity and swearing?”

It maybe doesn’t come across so well in writing – but it was a very funny moment.

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