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Review: Chav Punk Hobbit – The Quest to The End Of The World – by Jason Phillips

chav punk hobbit

Jason is a Welsh Musician, and in this short book, he details his most recent Camino de Santiago de Compostela pilgrimage experience. He takes the Camino Portugués from Porto, a follow up to his previous encounter with the more traditional, and more widely known and popular, Camino Frances. We find Jason alone in his hotel room in Porto in a dusky predawn, a crazed band post-gig, having departed, and left the protagonist with little money and equipment and a pipe dream to escape yet again on pilgrimage to Santiago. This book is a modern pilgrimage, a journey to self. We are not sharing the voyage of a medieval religious monk, we share our modern chav hobbit’s punk desires. He needs not mass, blood wine and body bread, but wifi, bocadillos and plastic auberge mattresses. Our modern day pilgrim needs not God’s guidance, but is savouring the beauty and tranquility of a rustic, muddy countryside, as his mind ventures into the pilgrim spirit and devours itself in questions of self-exploration. A host of characters is met and through the hero’s transcript of muttered profanities as he describes the lurid animals he meets en route we make friends with a myriad of personalities from dotted around the globe. Most notably, German astronomer-theologian Thomaas and later, Irish reveller and journeyman Eoin. Interspersed with Spanish natives and kind Portuguese innkeepers and waiters, our bubbly hero sounds off his thoughts and shares in the rich tapestry of life of his fellow men, all the time progressing his own mind’s journey and in a self-revelatory manner, touching our soul with more profound deeper and wise philosophy. Jason loves his woman in Wales. He never quite transcends and escapes his homeland of Wales. From the murky sacred Ulla river reminding him of his hometown, Newport, to thinking of his absent grandfather having disappeared to Australia on his journey’s End, nostalgia is always a containing force to Jason, preventing him from moving on and getting the success and desires he so craves from life. Is it money he seeks? He answers and affirmative no and sees it as a means to an end in life’s great journey. He does seek Broadband and Wifi, yet after we lose communications and move out of the realm of technological contact with the outside world, our hero is not lost but finds himself again and can let his hair down properly in…

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Your God is a False God

Crucifictions

Just going back to my regular meeting with the Stasi earlier this week… (Stasi were originally the East German Secret Police) I refer to my crack psychiatric home treatment team endearingly as the Stasi as it sums up neatly what they are really like. I was discussing with David, the new Irish  male CPN (Community Psychiatric Nurse) a load of reasons why they were all evil for not leaving me in peace alone, away from the horrendously haunting psychiatric system. He said that I was babbling speculative philosophy – that it was all mental illness. I then asked him to expand why it was philosophy. I said that I was speaking the truth and reality but it was philosophy to him as he’d been brainwashed and divorced from humanity through his psychiatric education and training. I was asked repeatedly to show more ‘Courtesy’. I said that there were no laws saying I had to be courteous, especially to people I do not choose to be in my life. He said that he would get the psychiatrist to implement that I had to be courteous as part of the legal conditions for my C.T.O. (Community Treatment Order). I said that this wasn’t legal and that the psychiatrist had no legal powers to do such a thing. He then spoke about the fact the psychiatrist (Dr. Ballantyne-Watts [Wales Forensic Psychiatry]) actually did have these powers. He expanded by saying that psychiatrists are very powerful (of that I am positively certain) and that some people believe that they are modern day Gods. I thought it was just a witty retort from him at first and giggled a little but the CPNs face remained stern and unchanged. I realised he was serious. I said that I would never be worshipping a human as a God and certainly not a psychiatrist and certainly not Dr. Ballantyne-Watts. He looked puzzled and didn’t seem to comprehend. I guess when you are so conditionned to working in the system, to blindly follow any order from above, that seeing the boss as a living embodiment of God is not strange. He then implied that psychiatrists had superhuman intelligence and were divine. I didn’t really wish to blaspheme against the poor fella’s beliefs. At the end of the day, I believe in freedom of choice, in particular the right to choose one’s religion (as enshrined in the Universal Declaration on…

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