Friday, 26 October 2012


I was really struggling with what to write today. But, totally determined not to leave it til the last minute as I have so often done these last few weeks and not at all procrastinating (honest), I started googling what to write in a blog post and came across something called Zen writers. Totally intrigued, I delved further and decide to download one called Ohmwriter. I installed it, not really knowing what it was (Big Bro often complains when he goes on my laptop that its full of all manner of tat, extra search bars, random programmes making the whole system struggle, I do get a bit one click download happy). So anyway, I downloaded it, clicked to open the program and all of a sudden my entire desktop was gone, replaced with a snowy scene, plinky music and nothing but a simple blinking cursor. Wow, what a revelation. No distracting Chrome icon at the bottom of my screen just begging me to check Facebook, no myriad of buttons on Word whispering silently  "click me click me, you know you want to know what I do" (invariably drawing a massive arrow on the screen or deleting everything), and no clock at the bottom of the screen reminding you of what you should be doing right now (or worse still that it's 745pm in the evening, you're 34 and watching the Crystal Maze with more than a touch of nostalgia, you're 34 for chrissake, and this is 2012 not 1991). Word has much improved since it got rid of that annoying paper clip popping up every five minutes to say "Hey! It looks like you're writing a letter, can I help you with that?" Well yes I am and no thank you I'm not a moron, now eff off. But still there are things about it that are distracting. Bright red lines alerting me to typos, and green ones that say a sentence doesn't make sense, when clearly it does (argue all you like but grammar is subjective, I am allowed to use colloquialisms, ok?). I would rather just be able to get on with the job in hand rather than be repeatedly alerted to my shortcomings. Word can be rather judgemental. So I am loving my new Zen Writer, it could be a new thing for me (just need to force myself to switch off The Crystal Maze and I'd be all set). But I really wish we could get a similar thing for all other areas of life...

Zen Driver, totally capable of wiping out all noise and movement from the backseat, as well as the distractions of other drivers. No kicking seat backs, no "are we there yet?", no annoying twats driving so far up your bum they may as well hitch themselves directly to your tow bar and definitely no "Mummy, he looked at meeeeeeeee!" . Just a nice peaceful driving environment, bliss.

Zen School Run, available for both morning and afternoon runs, attaches all necessary bags and boomf to each relevant child before leaving the house in the morning (thereby avoiding the “Mummy you forgot my kit and I had to do football in my plimsolls” whine), and extricates random sticks and weapons without said child noticing and therefore avoiding an entire school run of "but I neeeeeeeed my light sabeeeeeeeeeeer". Similarly Zen School Run would also be capable of unpacking the two week holidays worth of luggage at the end of the day, while simultaneously dealing with stereo cries of "I need a drink",  "I need to make something",  "My foot hurts" and the ever present "he looked at me". Just allowing you sixty seconds of peace in which to have a wee and stick the kettle on.

Zen "it may look like I'm listening to you but really I'm replaying Friends The One With The Candy Hearts in my head" complete with automatic "mmmhmmmms", head nods and serious face where appropriate.

Zen Life, only for hardcore Zenists. Completely and entirely wipes out all of life’s extra "noise" as in news we don't need to hear about, things we don't need to know about but invariably are told, but more importantly random thoughts that plague our every waking moment, usually about things we don't need to be told and news we don't need to know about. I have had been suffering more than a few mental wrangles in recent weeks over the Jimmy Savile saga, do I really need to know every detail? Why does news really exist? Do we really need to know all this? Does it help the victims that I know about it? Does it help me? If I don't need to know about it why is it all over the news and why am I listening to it? I have spent many a long night recently thinking about this very question. Surely I should really be asleep, or the very least worrying about things that really do affect me such as what I am going to feed the kids tomorrow and I really need to buy more toilet paper or we're back on the kitchen roll again.

There is so much noise in our daily lives, and it comes at us from all angles. Our kids, the media, family, friends, if only there was a way to get peace when we need it and only focus on the stuff that really mattered, maybe we would all be a little less stressed.

Yep I'm loving my new Zen Writer, I just wish I could flip a switch and have some peace in other areas of my life; when the kids are driving me insane, be able to have them curled into me all sleepy and sweaty, not caring about the news or the lack of bog roll, just focussing on how gorgeous they are.

Final edit: having written this post completely on my new Ohmwriter, I am convinced. Although there is a sound of a drip at every keystroke which initially was enjoyable but has made me need a wee, and I have got so into writing that the Crystal Maze has now finished. Bugger. 

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