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  • Chris Mads

'The great laying down of identity'

I recently started keeping a journal again.

I say "again", I am not really sure if I ever properly kept a journal before. I've had notebooks that I've written bits down in and I once kept a diary for a whole year of my life to see if anything exciting happened - it did. But I am not sure I've ever has a receptacle for thoughts, experiences, creativity and random musings. A journal is, I suppose, a little bit like a paper blog. But slightly more private. Depending on your readership.

Anyway, I digress. The inspiration for this shift is twofold and came from comments I read from people far more creative and journal worthy than I am. The first was a throwaway line by Chadwick Boseman, star of the truly brilliant Black Panther. He mentioned putting thoughts and reflections on the character of T'Challa down in journals when he was a young man.

But the real spark moment came courtesy of the late great AA Gill. I was reading his autobiography Pour Me A Life - as equally brilliant as Mr Boseman's work but for different reasons - when I came across the passage below. It seemed a good sort of mission statement.

You always want to remember the time which was supposed to be "your time".


"The saddest thing after all these years is not remembering. Well, who'd have thought? I miss the lost years of my twenties. All the living. All that high old emotion from that time when it's all new. The moment that was supposed to be my time, when the music was made for me, the films, the books, the great two-fisted time that is hammered out to be our time, when we set the tone, learn the moves of who we will be - the great laying down of identity."


You see, the truth is we are often too busy with the doing to so the appreciating. So I'm taking five minutes every day for the appreciating. I'm taking five minutes to see what's going on with my own "great laying down of identity".

#culture #personal

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