Hoomum

Sheldon Tiberius aka Dog

Last night I sat down with Dog and he asked me to share his thoughts with you…

Dear Hoomum.

Thank you for my house,
Taking time to throw my
Mouse.

For taking me on your
Walks, all our little daily
Talks.

All those snuggles, naps
We share, sorry about all the
Hair.

Thank you for the food you
Bring, thank you mum for
Everything.

(C)BobChristianpoetry

(C)SheldonTiberius

Mother

Mother

By Bob Christian

Mother

My mother has something about her.
By day, a sense of dedication
She worked hard to provide a happy home.
By night, she desperately tried to keep a vicious
Monster hidden from her children’s tender eyes.

She would always tell us not to worry.
Working two jobs to provide for us,
When our father wouldn’t. This was the woman
Who loved me, even when I couldn’t love myself.
She carried my burdens for me.

Now I’m fully grown, and I know how hard
It is to parent two children well, I’m even more
In awe of her. She sometimes talks so much,
I wonder how she can breathe.
But I’m just grateful I can still hear her.

(C) BobChristianpoetry2021

Live read

As it’s Mother’s Day, I decided to do a live read of ‘Mother’, which is taken from my latest book, iHuman.

I don’t do these reads very often for a few reasons:- Firstly, as an autistic person, I struggle to inject emotion into my speech. Secondly, I’m dyslexic too, so I find it very hard to read out loud. Thirdly, I’m very self-conscious and shy….

So please enjoy this special reading of Mother, dedicated to my mom.

Mother, live read 2021

If it’s on the Internet

Well it must be true right…?

Wrong! Just because you saw something on social media or some other place on the World Wide Web it doesn’t make it true. I’m sad that I even have to say it.

Hell, I could start a cult that worships marmalade or, I don’t know, say that my cat is the reincarnation of St Francis of Assisi. These claims, while obviously absurd and ridiculous, would, I’m sure, given long enough on the internet, gain some traction and perhaps some followers.

Reading it online doesn’t make it fact. In this time of ever-increasing easy access to the internet, social media and in also protecting individual free speech, we must be smarter and more aware of digital misinformation… and outright, overt and flagrant lies. I’m sure if I asked how many people had heard such classics as the lies below, I am sure most of you would have come across at least one of them.

  • Hitler is still alive
  • Paul McCartney died and was replaced by a double
  • The earth is flat
  • Vaccines contain RFID chips, or cause Autism
  • The members of the royal family are all shape-shifting lizards
  • Denver airport is home to the illuminati

It’s so easy to click “share” on a story that a friend has shared with you, without properly checking it, maybe you didn’t realise it was misinformation. I get that in these days of busy lives we don’t have time to visit sites like Hoax Slayer, or Snopes to fact-check everything yourself. But if you can’t fact check it, then please think twice about sharing it unless you are absolutely sure it’s true.

The reason I’m talking about this is that I was contacted by an old work colleague hiding behind a fake social media account. They had been talking privately to someone who I thought was my friend and who has recently been expressing views that align with the beliefs of the far right QAnon conspiracy theories. I won’t name them here, as I’m not prepared to give them the time of day.

I was very disappointed to be sent screenshots of the conversation between them, and to see this so-called friend of mine agreeing with some disgusting views, that as a freemason, I am part of a network of child abusers. This was highly offensive to me, as I’ve spent many years online fighting and highlighting these despicable sick fuckers. So to now suggest that I’m one of them is awful, libellous and offensive to my very core.

I’m a member of the largest charitable fraternity in the world. I am a proud freemason. I’m sure that you now have a view of me based on that statement.

Why? Maybe you’ve based that impression on something you’ve read online, maybe you know a freemason. There are over 200,000 of us in the UK, so chances are you work, socialise or have a family member that’s a freemason.

So before you go sharing wild conspiracy type theories, I’d like to ask you to stop for a minute and think to yourself: “What’s the source of the story? Do they have a slant or an agenda, are they reputable?” Not only does it protect you from looking foolish if someone fact checks the article and it’s proven to be fake, but it’s also a small step towards halting disinformation or downright propaganda.

Stay Safe X

45

“45”

By Bob W Christian

The greatest trick this devil
Ever performed is complete
Manipulation of perception
Of the current situation.

Giving no real thought
To an unpleasant existence;
Looking for a way out, some
Simple distraction.

Based on facts so thin they’re
Transparent, it begins to take
Hold; blinkering you into
Seeing a different perspective.

Is it all fake news?

(c)BobChristianpoetry

Seasons Bleatings

As this crazy year draws to a close, the Christian household prepares for our first real Christmas in seven years. I thought I’d sit back in my favourite armchair, put on some tunes, pour myself a nice glass of rum, relax in front of a roaring fire (courtesy of YouTube) and look back over my last 12 months.

This year started as the previous ones had done, with a very late night, working hard until the small hours on New Year’s Eve. This was closely followed by another busy day in the pub trying my best to socialise and interact with regulars and the ‘down from London for the holidays hooray’ types enjoying an extended break from their jobs in the city. Little did I know what was round the corner for me and for the hospitality trade in general …

March brought the beginning of a global pandemic that was to change everyone’s lives. I shut down the pub on 20th with the general manager, not knowing if or when we would be able to open again. I drove home that night to batten down the hatches, so to speak, and to brace for what was in store for our little family during the lockdown period. I didn’t realise then, that I would never return.

This was mainly due to Mrs Bob reading some of my newer poems and suggesting that we should put another book together.

After the success of (Re)Mixtapes earlier in the year, I decided to make the best of the lockdown and settle into a new creative routine. I began writing some of what Mrs Bob says is my best poetry.

While we waited to see what the future had in store for us, I decided to work on another anthology with a view to releasing it in March or April 2021. In the end, it was called iHuman, and it was released in November!

Mrs Bob was there next to me the whole time, cooking, baking, making jam and chutneys, staying up til midnight to get food delivery slots, and keeping things ticking over in the house. She helped me work on each piece, and they practically fell out of me. We painted several rooms, fences and the shed. We cleared out the shed and almost every cupboard in the house. We walked around the houses locally every day, and grew tomatoes, chillis, broad beans and a lemon bush from seed. We actually had a lovely time and talked a lot.

As lockdown began to lift, we started to emerge into this strange new world of one-way shopping, social distancing, masks and sanitiser. After a long talk with Mrs Bob, I took the brave decision to leave the hospitality trade and look for a new career choice. Should I go back into logistics, warehouse management? Perhaps I could go back to my roots and my first love of engineering. I got in touch with an agency that helps disabled people to find work or to retrain in another field. So, with that in mind I was booked into a training company to get a forklift license again, as they’re only valid for three years at a time. This in itself was a highly stressful thing to do. I hate tests, and meeting new people, and on top of that, it was in Exeter, which I didn’t know at all. Well, the good news is that the course wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be, and there were only two other people on it. I did pass the test and got my license… that was another string to my bow.

Then, as you will already know if you read my ramblings, I managed to secure a position within a disability-friendly company called Devon Disability Collective. This has been the best career move I’ve made for quite a number of years now. To be honest, I’m so happy there, I’m hoping I can stay for years. Everyone is so welcoming and friendly, it feels fateful that I found it.

So as I look forward to the first real Christmas that I’ve had off since I got married seven years ago, it’s with a sense of happiness and contentment that, despite everything this crazy year has thrown at us, I can honestly say that it’s drawn Mrs Bob & I closer together. It’s shown me that there *is* life after the service industry. I just needed to take that difficult first step to go and the even harder step of believing in my own abilities.

I know that I’m amongst a small percentage of people that have managed to land on my feet after leaving the service industry. For this, I count my blessings every day. I’m very thankful for the love and support of Mrs Bob and members of our family.

So was this year draws to a close, I would like to take this opportunity to say to each and every one of you: thank you for your support with reading my blog, buying my books, and your company online this year.

I really hope that you are healthy, warm and not lonely this Christmas. Have a blessed holiday season, and a happier new year next year.

Stay Safe X

New Beginnings

I’m sure that those of you who follow my ramblings will be interested to hear that I took the decision earlier this year to leave the service industry after 7 1/2 years. This was mainly due to Covid-19, and also some unrelated health issues. It was not a decision that I took lightly, and it was made after quite an amount of careful thought, consideration and discussion with Mrs Bob. However, it was, as it turns out, a decision that was made for the best.

While I do miss working within the service industry and with friends and regularS who became friends over the years, it was definitely time to move on to other things.

I spent the months during lockdown with Mrs Bob, and we got along brilliantly. It was almost like being retired, without being old crotchety and grumpy … wait, no, we had all those things – well, I did, anyway. During the first lockdown, I applied for a high number of positions within the engineering sector.

After nearly 200 applications, I was beginning to lose faith, and feared that I would end up back behind a bar once this whole pandemic was over. This was not something that I was keen on, and Mrs Bob was in agreement. Just when I had started to give up hope that I would be able to find something that suited me, I had a call for an interview at a company in Exeter. The company concerned sells mobility scooters and aids, as well as electronic equipment. It has a workforce that is mainly made up of people with various disabilities, which I was very interested to find out. After a successful interview, I was asked to go in for a quick trial, to see if I enjoyed the job that they had on offer and that I could do it.

I’m pleased to say that I was offered the job last month, and have been working there for three weeks. I have fitted in very, very well, and thoroughly enjoy it. It’s so nice to work in a place where, as a disabled person, I am not the odd one out. I don’t have to wear a badge that identifies me as disabled, just so that I get treated fairly, decently and with some respect. I am very happy there, and to be completely honest, I think I may have found my forever job. It’s a great team – very friendly and welcoming, and I’m so relieved.

I’d like to take this opportunity as well now to say a very big thank you to Mrs Bob. She said that I should hold out for the right job, and not rush into to an agency position, and she was right. She usually is, as she keeps telling me!

Thanks to Mrs Bob and all my friends and family who have shown me support and love during the first lockdown. I hope that as we enter lockdown 2, each and every one of you are taking the necessary precautions to stay safe and well. I hope your attitude stays positive and your results remain negative.

Stay very safe

Solutions

“Solutions”

By Bob W Christian

Please don’t worry, this isn’t written about me, it’s about a close family member.

My morning coffee.
Unlike me, is strong.
I say morning, actually
It’s when I come round.
After another of those,
Unforgettable nights.
I just can’t remember.

Strength, something
I lost years ago. Now
A way of measuring.
How much solution,
Is poured out. While
Revisiting the regrets.
In this endless story.

I’ve told anyone who’d
Listen. While continually
Poisoning myself, slowly,
Desperately. Fighting the
Inevitable. One last shot,
To stop my life, becoming
A sad statistic of addiction.

(c)BobChristianpoetry

Snapshots

“Snapshots”

by Bob W Christian

So many memories left here.
Photos – a snapshot of you.
Pieces of paper, scattered.
Your essence lingering on,
Haunting this old house.

Reading your scribbled words:
Always thought this moment
Would come without warning.
Waiting for the right time could
Take forever, you see.

We both know it’s been coming
For a while now. It’s not you, it’s
Me. It’s kept me awake trying to
Tell you. I’ve been scared for a
Long, long time now.

I can’t understand how we can
Forgive each other, for words not
Spoken until it’s too late, while trying
To move forward with our lives.
What would Social Media say?

How can someone be around one
Minute, then disappear? How do I
Cope with the disappointment of all
The things I didn’t accomplish?
It‘s best I go. All my love always.

The end, then? Or a beginning?
A whole new chapter in your life?
Left, wondering. Searching for
Clues. Will I ever know
The end of your story?

(c)BobChristianpoetry

Haunted


Haunted

By Bob W Christian

If this place could talk,
The stories it would tell!
Trapped within these
Walls for their eternity,
Gliding along corridors.

Pictures gathering dust,
Snapshots of the past.
This gallery of memories,
Life frozen, doomed to be
Repeated on an endless loop.

Voices call to me from
Empty rooms. Ghostly
Echoes from the past.
Whispers from beyond
My reality, now falling silent.

Memories, emotions,
Regrets. Forever
Haunting me.

(c)BobChristianpoetry