Wednesday, 7 December 2016

Spinners, and spanners

Spinning yarn
Our clothes are ridiculously cheap compared to what they were a couple of centuries ago. Cloth then was incredibly expensive, and those who made it were the professionals of their day. Women who could spin yarn were known as spinsters; a term which has become almost mocking was originally one of great respect. It recognised the first women who were not dependent on men, but could generate their own income.


Marriage registers are quite musty in their attitudes because they only record the father's details, however there is a move afoot to modify records to include mother's details. Unmarried parties used to be described as bachelor and spinster. Nowadays they are called single, which is boring in comparison. 

Spinning a yarn
There's a worrying trend which argues we should now accept that leaders will 'vary the truth' to suit their ends. This spinning of a yarn has led to a general reduction in our trust of each other. If you take that away then nothing works, so being trustworthy is vital for all of us.

The recent Brexit and US Presidential election campaigns made claims or promises were denied within days, and it may appear that we can do nothing about it. The old saying that 'power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely' may well come to haunt us. However there are two things that we can do to make a difference:
1) Vote on evidence rather than rhetoric.
2) Seek out the truth, and spread it widely.

Jesus made the bold claim that he is 'the way, the truth, and the life'. This new year we have opportunity to follow a person rather than dogma, and that he wants to empower us to maximise life's possibilities by walking his way. That's far from being boring.

Spanners make the world go round
I had a great conversation this afternoon with a lad I've known for many years, and now he is beginning to flourish as a mechanical engineer working on Portland. Teased as 'spanners', these men and women enable our world to move. So much of what they do is never seen, but their skills are vital in keeping things ticking over efficiently. May I encourage you to show appreciation for such amazing people.

In this field, trust is important too. Huge advances have been made in road vehicles' combustion efficiency. Thank God for improvements. If you're driving behind an old vehicle you'll soon smell unburnt fuel. However, software fiddles gave false readings, and pollution from diesels in particular is far too high. It has become a major killer for city dwellers.

Spanners in the works
Of course achievement can quickly be undermined by some selfish clumsy person putting a spanner in the works. It could literally be mechanical interference and destruction, but it could also be political or entrepreneurial incompetence or dishonesty.

Wherever we find those destroying what's precious, we must challenge that vandalism. Those who absorb the energy of goodness should be checked. All of us can play a part without becoming moaning minnies. Let's excel at praising those who are trustworthy and fun!