Around 6 AM, In that liminal period between sleep and wakefulness each morning, many ideas for blog posts float into my shrinking brain. As a victim of short-term memory loss, I decided the best way to capture them (the dream catcher I bought at the magic shop doesn’t work) was to keep a notebook and pen on the table next to my bed.
I learned this trick in a workshop on journaling organized on themes from Carl Jung’s writings. Jung was much more interested in the subconscious than Freud, in my mind he understood the human condition better than Freud, especially female humans. Where Freud appears to have reduced everything to physical drives or the Id, Jung insisted humans had a spiritual side. (Dr. Bob who helped Bill Wilson get sober, was a student of Jung. Wilson was the founder of AA.)
Okay I got lost for a moment, remembering stuff, which goes to show some part of my brain is awake. What I set out to share in this post was that one day when I felt blocked from writing, I opened my notebook to look for an idea, and discovered that I can’t read what I’ve written. Either its hard to write when your asleep or my writing is no longer legible, which I blame on keyboard use as it can’t possibly be the “dropsy” in my hands.
One thought I retained involved Thomas Dudley. Okay you’re probably tired of hearing about him, but its cathartic for me to share the feelings I had on reading about him and other Puritan ancestors. After I read the description Barnard Bailyn wrote about Dudley, to Brother D, my follow-up comment was, “He sounds like my father.” Yes it is eerie, but the similarities between the two are unmistakable. Arrogant, overbearing, a natural leader, voracious reader, etc.
Dudley was a nonconformist. Many times, I heard my Dad say, “I am a nonconformist.” I don’t know what Dad meant by that, but here’s part of what Wiki says:
“Nonconformist” was a term used in England and Wales after the Act of Uniformity 1662 to refer to a Protestant Christian who did not “conform” to the governance and usages of the established Church of England. English Dissenters (such as Puritans) who violated the Act of Uniformity 1559 may retrospectively be considered Nonconformists, typically by practicing or advocating radical, sometimes separatist, dissent with respect to the established state church……
Dad is the only person I have ever met who voted for both Barry Goldwater and George McGovern. Dad went from being an Opus Dei Catholic to being a Methodist at the end of his life.
And Thomas Dudley, Dad’s ancestor, fathered a remarkable woman.
Friday nights have become Aussie night around here. Via cable we have access to a dozen PBS stations. Many nights this means we can access anything we want as long as its Downton Abby, which does not rock my socks. Thus on Fridays we watch a lineup which includes Prynne Fisher, Doctor Blake and Mr and Mrs Murder. My new favorite is the latter with Charlie and Nicola which brings back memories of Topper from the Fifties and Nick and Nora Charles.
A few years back, Robin Mc Neill, English Don, and one of the team of McNeil and Lehrer on PBS predicted that by 2020 or thereabouts, we speakers of English in different countries would not be able to understand each other owing to our regional dialects. He said this before the rapid rise of social media and modern telecommunications and was a bit premature I think.