Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish.

Steve Jobs, CEO and co-founder of Apple and Pixar, at his Stanford University commencement speech in June 2005, urges us to pursue our dreams and see the opportunities in life’s setbacks — including death itself.

He talks about how you cannot connect the dots looking forward, you can only connect them looking backwards –  much like Søren Kierkegaard’s philosophy that: “Life can only be understood backward. It must be lived forward.

His anecdotes point to simple advice to: Find and do what you love, and never settle for less. And always to remember two basic truths:

  1. Sometimes life hits you in the head with a brick. Don’t lose faith.
  2. Remembering that you are going to die is the best way to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose.

How to live a good life – according to Benjamin Franklin


1. Temperance. Eat not to dullness; drink not to elevation. 

2. Silence. Speak not but what may benefit others or yourself; avoid trifling conversation.

3. Order. Let all your things have their places; let each part of your business have its time.

4. Resolution. Resolve to perform what you ought; perform without fail what you resolve.

5. Frugality. Make no expense but to do good to others or yourself; i.e., waste nothing.bf001

6. Industry. Lose no time; be always employ’d in something useful; cut off all unnecessary actions.

7. Sincerity. Use no hurtful deceit; think innocently and justly, and, if you speak, speak accordingly.

8. Justice. Wrong none by doing injuries, or omitting the benefits that are your duty.

9. Moderation. Avoid extremes; forbear resenting injuries so much as you think they deserve.

10. Cleanliness. Tolerate no uncleanliness in body, clothes, or habitation.Benjamin-Franklin-Quick-Quotes

11. Tranquillity. Be not disturbed at trifles, or at accidents common or unavoidable.

12. Chastity. Rarely use venery but for health or offspring, never to dullness, weakness, or the injury of your own or another’s peace or reputation.

13. Humility. Imitate Jesus and Socrates.


The Facebook intrusion

Sharing is caring
FB sharing
Facebook is open to just about anyone to create their own profile and share their every waking thought with “friends”. Everyone who uses it tends to like to share information about themselves in different ways, which has given us a range of different types of user – from the over-sharing archiver who has pictures and comments for everything, the humble bragger and keyboard warrior who like to give social commentary reserved strictly for online audiences only, and the proud parents and relationship partners who feel the need to profess their love publicly.  It certainly makes for an interesting mix and a kind of weird perspective on the world we live in today.

Is that really you?
Online personasWe don’t all use Facebook to detail every minor detail of our lives (- although some do!) but it has to be said, no matter how humdrum your life may be, Facebook does give all of us an outlet to feel important and individual by designing an interesting, online Self that projects a vicarious image to the world.

Are we being bias?
There’s an argument to say that Facebook decides what information we consume by what it’s algorithms dictate appears on our feed. After all, it makes sense that the posts we “like” most and those from people who “like” our posts be made most visible because Facebook deems them most relevant to us. But in turn, this makes all other posts (and challenging views) invisible to us, which could suggest we’re just seeing a picture of agreement that simply confirms our biases and gives us comfort in a homogenous perspective. So while we think the Facebook social media architects are giving us more personalised interactions, perhaps all they’re actually doing is amplifying our biases by killing diversity, and stifling us by telling us what information to consume.

You WILL share everything!
Facebook is one of the worst perpetrators of automatic disclosure online. This so-called “frictionless sharing” means that anywhere you go and anything you do online can potentially be posted straight to your Facebook page without you even realising it.

Facebook like to share too!
facebook-privacyWe have to face facts, Facebook is selling each and every one of us out. As soon as you sign into Facebook and accept their terms, you sign away all rights. The cookies embedded on your device to access the application can track everything you do, including accessing your private messages. (So I suppose it makes sense that Facebook would pay $22 billion for the hugely popular group chat application, WhatsApp, now too!)

A Bulgarian teacher, Salim Virani, has documented how Facebook has systematically violated our lives and sold us out again and again (over a dozen times) to make money over the years. And with the privacy change that happened from 30 January he details some scary findings that Facebook achieve from new powers that will irreversibly eliminate our privacy.

Virani wites: “Facebook is demanding to track what you buy, and your financial information like bank account and credit card numbers. You’ve already agreed to it in the new terms of service. It’s already started sharing data with Mastercard. They’ll use the fact that you stayed on Facebook as permission to make deals with all kinds banks and financial institutions to get your data from them. They’ll call it anonymous, but like they trick your friends to reveal your data to third-parties with apps, they’ll create loopholes here too.”

“Facebook is also insisting to track your location via your phone’s GPS, everywhere and all the time. It’ll know exactly who you spend your time with… They’ll know how many times you’ve been to the doctor or hospital, and be able to share that with prospective insurers and employers. They’ll know when you’re secretly job hunting , and will sell your endorsement for job sites to your friends and colleagues – you’ll be revealed.”

“They’ll know everything that can be revealed about your location, and they’ll use it however they want to make a quick buck.”

You can’t leave – no really, all your peers are here!
What the Facebook party looks likeNo one wants to be the first to leave a party – even when everyone is aware the exciting time has passed and the atmosphere is petering out. Instead you hang in there a bit longer and make the effort to keep up with everyone, no matter how mind-numbingly dull things get, simply because everyone’s there and you have to be a part of it. The same could be said for Facebook. It’s the big room you can’t leave because, ultimately, it represents the online You and you need to be seen at the party.

Amanda Hess puts it perfectly: “Facebook is the living dead: the most popular, least relevant social network where teenagers and adults alike gather out of fear of missing out on things that don’t even make them happy.”

Some people literally can’t live without FB
internet-addictionFacebook has such devoted fans that some people claim to be addicted and unable to live without it.  In fact there is said to be over 350 million people suffering from Facebook Addiction Disorder (FAD) sucking up their time.

What is perhaps most disturbing, is that one in every three people who use Facebook and other social network sites say they often feel lonelier and more jealous after spending time on them.


“More is lost by indecision than by wrong choices” – forge ahead… Even when in doubt, assert yourself!


“You don’t s**t where you eat. And you really don’t s**t where I eat.”  – don’t piss on your own chips. Moreover, don’t let anyone else piss on your chips either!


“How can you trust a guy who can literally go f*** themselves?” – Paulie explains that snakes have both male and female body parts… “That’s why somebody you don’t trust, you call a snake.”


“You know, Tony, it’s a multiple choice thing with you. ‘Cause I can’t tell if you’re old-fashioned, you’re paranoid, or just a f**king asshole.” – Carmela to Tony


“There’s an old Italian saying: you fuck up once, you lose two teeth.” – do it right or pay/ die trying!


RAW …  It’s time to start thinking before we eat.


IF we were to stop the factory farming of animals:

  • Billions of animals will benefit from the end of the confinement, overcrowding, excessive growth rates and overwork that characterise intensive farming.
  • And millions of hungry or malnourished people could benefit too.

That’s why Raw has joined ‘Enough Food for Everyone IF’ – a powerful and diverse group of 80 organisations working together to lead the fight against the global hunger crisis.

Join the campaign… See an end to global hunger and factory farming too – Sign up here:

Day-to-day we can help… Think before you eat.

  • Stop polluting your body with contaminated factory-farmed meat.
  • Buy local, high-welfare meat and dairy, reduce your consumption of animal protein, buy local, seasonal food and  reduce food waste.


Feeding nine billion people

How we can take action (- excerpts from

10 actions which would make a difference…

1. Shop at a farmers market

Farmers markets are one venue where you can buy directly from farmers.
Buying directly from the farmer helps the farmer retain more money from every pound spent than if they are sold through conventional food retail outlets like supermarkets. In addition to supporting farmer livelihoods, purchasing directly from your food producer lets you ask questions about how your food was grown. Not all vendors at farmers’ markets sell produce they grew themselves: different farmers markets have different rules about what can be sold.

Check out this site to search for local farmers markets in your area

2. Join a community shared agriculture (CSA)

This is where the community shares in both the risks of farming and the bounty of the harvest. The way it works is you buy a ‘share’ of the farmer’s harvest in advance, giving the farmer the start up funds they need to grow their crops. Then you receive a box of food every week during the harvest. Similar to buying direct from farmers at farmers’ markets, buying direct from farmers through a CSA helps the farmer retain a greater portion of every pound you spend.

Simply post your search in Google for your nearest. I found this little gem for a CSA in Milton Keynes:

3.Try growing your own food

Growing your own food will increase your knowledge of food and reduce the miles your food has to travel to just about zero.  Additionally, you’ll gain a greater appreciation for the lifestyle of a farmer.

There are numerous books on the topics of growing your own food.  The internet will provide you with a vast wealth of knowledge, however if you prefer a book, one title is “The Backyard Homestead” which will provide any aspiring gardener with the basic knowledge to get started.

4. Experience farm life

As the world shifts to predominantly urban, the plight of a farmers is increasingly farther removed from our consciousness.  To gain an appreciation for our food, it is important to understand where it comes from.  Try holidaying at a farm.

5. Eat in season

When you’re eating peppers in the middle of winter, they came from a long way away.  Eating in season means that the food you’re eating is from the same region and that you’re supporting regional farmers.  For advice on how to do this, see the links below.

6.Eat efficiently

Foods from animals generally require more land, water and fossil fuels to produce than plant foods because not all of the feed livestock consume is converted into meat, milk and eggs. Try experimenting with vegetarian recipes or start a Meatless Monday tradition to cut back on your animal food consumption. There are many factors that contribute to efficient food production. For example, organic, grass-fed beef raised and consumed locally could be more efficient in terms of resources consumed in production than industrially produced fruits, vegetables, or vegetarian protein options produced and processed long distances from where they are consumed and shipped half way around the world to get into our supermarkets. Become informed about where your food comes from and what is required to produce it so that you can make more efficient choices.

7. Become informed about food

Gaining knowledge our the food system will help you make better choices and understand the current issues regarding food.  The website provides some useful pointers.

8. Concentrate on food waste

Estimates state that globally, 30% of the food grown is wasted at some point between the field and the dinner plate.  Much of this waste is on the consumer end, as those leftovers aren’t as appealing on their third day.  Try making this a focus in your kitchen by being conscious of it and planning smaller meals so there aren’t so many leftovers to be wasted.  Additionally, preserving and processing raw vegetables is a great way to lower the amount of food waste in your kitchen.  The food waste you do have you could compost.

As a society, we are continually using more of the earth to store our garbage.  When you throw out compost this fills up the space in landfills and required us to use even more space for our garbage.  Additionally, if you try growing your own food, the compost will help improve the quality of your food.  Learn more about composting.

9.Volunteer professional skills or donate

There are many organizations which are working tirelessly to improve our food system in many ways.  They require resources to keep their efforts alive.  Consider donating or volunteering your skills and time as a way to get involved and make a difference.

Let’s have ‘The Talk’

overpopulation-scalesBy 1850, we had reproduced so successfully that in 200,000 years we had 1 billion people on Earth.  The next billion came in 100 years.  Now we add 1 billion people to the planet every 12 years!

In 2011 the world population reached 7 billion people.

As a species, we are a biological success story – we survive.
We are also a religious success story – we have gone forth and multiplied.

But now we have to stop… or it will be our downfall.

Every day we add 229,000 people to the planet. This is unsustainable… which means the world’s population has to stop growing.

The question is how?  Will it stop over famine, disease, war over resources or will it stop growing because people choose to have smaller families?

Actress Alexandra Paul discusses her lifelong concern about human overpopulation and the fears we all have about discussing the issue. (January 2013)

The fastest and most efficient way to stabilise the world population is to send girls to school and to empower women. To give everyone access to an education on birth control.


My pledge

My pledge –

– Addressed to:  All of  us


1. I recognize our population and economies have grown beyond a size the Earth can sustainably support. I realize our beautiful Earth is small when we visit 7 billion people upon it. I acknowledge Earth’s resources are not unlimited.2. I pledge to change my life. I will do my part to bring the scale of the human presence on Earth back into sustainable equilibrium. I will scale back my footprint on the planet while increasing joy and fulfillment. I will set an example for my friends, neighbors and children.a. I will bring into this world no more than two children. If I’ve already produced more than two, I will not produce more.b. I will take steps to get out of debt and stay out of debt.

c. I will continually strive to “live small,” reducing the size of my ecological footprint with conscious, responsible decisions and actions about energy and materials consumption.

d. I will work less and spend less. When I’m able, I’ll share my job with someone who needs one.

e. I will loan and borrow items that aren’t needed daily. When I must acquire goods, I’ll seek quality goods that last. I will buy used and buy local.

3. I pledge to change the system. I withdraw my participation in, and support for, societal activities and public policies that encourage, accelerate, or rely on growth in population, resource extraction or energy consumption.

a. I will inform my elected representatives that further economic or population growth are indicators of failure rather than success. I will give them permission to pursue stability or contraction.

b. I will insist on elimination of growth subsidies (These include most urban renewal incentives, tax increment financing, enterprise zones, utilities tap fees that don’t recover full cost, impact fee abatements, most economic development incentives, and tax breaks and other financial benefits for larger families.)

c. I will support public policies that fully connect the costs of growth with the behavior.

d. I will root out antiquated metrics, strategic plans, and language that reinforce the old growth-seeking paradigm.



Taken from ‘ Pledge to think small’,