Issue 9 - Remem-blur When

Your Weekly Dose of Fun and Friendship

In this week’s newsletter:

👨 June is a Special Month for the Fellas
This month now has a deeper meaning for me.

🧠 Such Great Memories?
Remember when… what happened again?

👯‍♀️ An Easy to Use Friend Skill
Let’s (not) sit down and talk face to face.

👨 Mens Mental Health Awareness Month

June is Men’s Mental Health Awareness Month, and I had no idea until today. In fact, I didn’t know such a thing existed, but am thrilled it does.

Like most of you, I know a lot of people who have had, or are having, a personal struggle. No matter the age, or gender, the mental health crisis is affecting us all, in one way or another. But, it’s hard to ignore the numbers and men are having a particularly tough time of it.

Speaking from experience, the trouble with us fellas is, we tend to suffer in silence and let things get really bad before we do anything about it. Then, too many good men feel like drastic and irreversible action is the only option. It most definitely is not.

So this week, lads, ladies, and non-binary friends as well, I’d love you to send a special Wednesday Waffle video to a man in your life, and check in on them. Let them know how you’re going. And tell them you’re always here to listen, should they ever want to talk. It could literally save a life.

Some good men :)

🧠 Such Great Memories?

Recently the group chat went on a walk down memory lane and a host of iconic teenage moments were discussed. Some, the stuff of folklore – like the time Sticks half-heartedly tried a front flip off a picnic table at recess, and when Homesy dinked a girl he was trying to impress down Harley Street. Neither went to plan, helping both become burned into our collective memories.

SIDE NOTE: Sticks landed flat on his back and winded himself badly, and Homesy got the speed wobbles, swerved up a gutter, and launched his love interest into a tree. Thankfully, his bruised ego was the only major injury.

PSA: don’t dink your love interest

Another infamous story, dating back twenty-something years, was the time Tyndall dropped a bowling ball from The Tower in the town we grew up. H reminded the group of this one.

I wasn’t there that particular day, but had heard about various people lobbing things from this Poppet Head, so I could easily picture it. Being inquisitive, I still had lots of questions though. Did it bounce into a building? Smash a car? Form a crater in the bitumen? Explode on impact?

Someone, who was there that day, said it burst into a million pieces. Another eye-witness told of the shell breaking off the ball, and the corked inner bouncing away. Other people offered up their own inconsistencies as well. In the end, the only thing I knew for certain was that no one was sure about anything.

It made me wonder about the human mind, and why this occurs.

Where someone dropped something

Adding another layer of confusion, a different friend, Nuxy, mentioned while he (like me) wasn’t there for the bowling ball, he did see the same guy, Tyndall, the group’s budding Isaac Newton, drop a computer screen from said tower.

Well, as luck would have it, when I read his message, I was with this tower drop fetish merchant, Tyndall, and asked him about both the bowling ball and computer monitor incidents. Finally the main protagonist would straighten things out for me.

Don’t you just want to destroy it... no?

He said the bowling ball shattered into a million pieces, which cleared that up. As for the computer screen, he never did that and presumed Nuxy had a case of mistaken identity, as a different friend, Chatters, once dropped a computer screen down a flight of stairs at a school fete.

NOTE: these were different times, and there was a certain “harmless” albeit destructive form of shenanigans teenagers took part in back in those days.

The computer incident was one I had seen with my own eyes, and by my recollection it was Chatters, Tyndall and I. As far as I knew, Nuxy wasn’t there. But whatever, at least the bowling ball situation could finally be put to bed. Spoiler Alert - it was not in fact in bed yet.

He verified this by taking us through the incident step by step. The genesis of the idea. The motivation. The drop. The impact. The outcome

Me, talking about someone else, soon

Later in the evening, long after the texts had died down, another mate, Pub, whose weekly screen time is obviously far less than the rest of us, chimed in stating that it wasn’t Tyndall that dropped the bowling ball from the tower and it was actually him.

He verified this by taking us through the incident in detail. The genesis of the idea. The motivation. The drop. The outcome. His case was pretty concrete and this version of events was later confirmed by H, the person that had first mentioned the story. It was then corroborated by Tyndall, who a few hours earlier had believed it was he, himself, that had done it. He then added that he “definitely” dropped a watermelon off there…

If you’re still following along, congratulations. I know what you’re thinking - are these people big drinkers? Or is there a history of dementia?

When the link is purple but you don’t remember Googling this

This whole situation really highlighted what happens to our memories over time, and how certain aspects can blur, fade and morph into something else. It made me question what I think I know, and how accurate my recollection of certain events is. I’d hate to have to give credible evidence about a historical case.

But it also made me stop and marvel at just how miraculous our brains are, and how they manage to store so much from across the decades. Because in a way, the main bits were retained. Everyone knew they saw someone drop something off somewhere at some point.

So, at least for now, it was Pub who dropped the bowling ball, but I won’t ever really be too sure what literally went down that day.


👯‍♀️ Easy to Use Friend Skills

Here’s a little tip from a psychologist that really resonated with me.

It’s for those times when you want to talk to someone and/or give them a chance to open up to you. Say, for example, you’re worried about them, or you overheard some concerning scuttlebutt. Pretty much any situation where a difficult conversation is called for.

For me, a man of a certain age, how I traditionally tackled these scenarios was to wait until the last possible minute, then arrange a face to face. That’s what I’d been taught – show the person respect and look them in the eye. But, not for the first time, therapy challenged something I had previously considered to be conventional wisdom. It now seems so obvious.

Why would sitting face to face, in an office, room, restaurant or bar be the best way to have someone open up? It’s actually the exact situation in which job interviews and police interrogations take place - two things not known for being casual and relaxed affairs.

Thankfully, there’s a different way of doing things and it’s a lot more low key and garners better results. That is to simply go from sitting face-to-face, to walking side-by-side.

“Why do you keep leaving the toilet seat up?”

The benefits of this are many, but the best is that by doing this, neither party feels boxed in or under the spotlight. It’s a far more conducive setting for opening up. Plus, when you’re walking, it’s not uncommon to not talk, and enjoy your surrounds. Try that when you’re sitting half a metre away from someone. The result is an awkward silence one you will clamour to fill.

So next time you want to talk to a friend or family member about something other than the normal fluffy stuff, suggest a walk and talk. It’ll feel better for you both, and might lead to better outcomes as well.

🍰 The Last Bite

Congratulations on making it to the end… you clocked it!

I apologise for the absence of a Wednesday Waffle Newsletter last week. I resumed paid employment and simply didn’t have the time. Exactly zero people seemed to notice, which was disturbing.

People have been reaching out about receiving their Wednesday Waffle Merch, which is good. You can get yours here.

If you want to help this little publication grow, and spread The Wednesday Waffle word, send your friends a video and sign them up to this email here.

Until next Wednesday, keep waffling 🧇