Chapter Nine: Recent Writing Reflections, Mortgage Rejection Part Two, No Rammstein This Summer and AEW Thoughts From A Seven-Year-Old
This entry reflects on two recent entries in the LAWES Report, how my efforts to secure a mortgage have to be put on hold, how grateful I am to secure a refund for Rammstein, even though it means not seeing one of my favourite bands, and the continued joys of watching wrestling with my partner's son, who has some great insights into the action.
It’s been a little longer than I expected since I wrote one of my journals, the main reason being that, half the time when I sit down to write them, I end up writing about a subject in such detail that they turn out better as standalone essays in The LAWES Report than as shorter, multi-topic entries in my journals. The first one of those, The Importance of Language: Should We Use ‘Autistic Person’ or ‘Person With Autism’? was one that I learned a lot from in writing, with the conclusion drawn being predominantly accepted by the autistic people who read and commented on it. That’s one of the main reasons I write, because in doing so it helps me to learn, improve and grow, and I will no longer use person-first language going forward unless an autistic person specifically requests I do for them. The essay I posted yesterday, The Curse of Perfectionism: How to Overcome Creative Fear has had a great response, generating several comments complimenting its quality and saying how helpful it is. It’s not often I get comments on my writing these days, so it was nice to hear that from people. It remains a challenge to get people to read what I write, but that’s the way of the world nowadays and not something I can afford to spend too much time stressing over at this point in my life. It’s there if people want it, and the advice within will be relevant even fifty years in the future. Hopefully, as I keep writing and hopefully growing an audience, it will be seen by people struggling with writer’s block or creative apathy and can go some way to helping them find their way through it. It’ll be highlighted in my homepage for some time to come, so it’s easy to find if anyone stumbles across my website in the future. I’d like to take this moment to thank everyone that reads, likes, comments, retweets, shares or otherwise engages with my writing. It’s these little dopamine bursts that keep me going, and make me feel like what I write has some worth. I’m very grateful to all of you for your support.
A bit of news on the house-buying front. After being declined for a mortgage from our banks because of my bankruptcy in 2015, a couple of friends advised that my partner and I contact a mortgage broker to see if they were able to help us succeed in obtaining a mortgage. Based on one of those friends’ recommendation, I contacted Stan Sherlock Associates of Carlisle to see what our options were. Having obtained a thorough credit report through Equifax, it turned out that my credit score was slightly lower than what Clearscore and Experian suggested – perhaps because of different assessment criteria, I don’t know – and, as a result of that and the current world situation with the pandemic impacting the economy, lenders would be highly unlikely to give us a mortgage at this point, unless we were prepared to agree a 5%-plus interest rate. Initially, I was prepared to do this, with my thinking that at least we’d own a home rather than renting, and we could potentially re-mortgage in eighteen months once my bankruptcy is off my credit report. After considering it further and talking it through with my better, wiser, smarter half, we decided it was better to wait until next year and look for a house then, rather than tie ourselves into a vastly-overpriced multi-decade financial commitment that we may not even be able to get ourselves out of.
In the days after the initial rejection, I was like a bear with a sore head. I felt like a failure and, as hard as I tried to let the situation wash over me and to see the positives, I couldn’t stop beating myself up over the situation I got myself into that resulted in me becoming bankrupt all those years ago, one borne out of severe mental illness and the folly of youth. I was very down, and it took a few days to break out of that funk, and to stop being a right grumpy-arse with the few people I’m able to see at the minute. I’m past it now, though. If someone had told me in 2015 that I’d be in a position today where I could make a realistic mortgage enquiry, that buying a house would be a possibility for me and that I’d be sharing it with the most incredible woman and two wonderful children, I’d have thought they were the ones that should’ve been sectioned, not me. Now, I’m in a position where I have a good deposit and, in sixteen months, we have a great chance of getting a good mortgage and a lovely home. However I look at it, that is massive, massive progress, and I need to stay focused on that positive aspect of it. The dream may not be a reality for a little while yet, but it’s a dream I once thought would never happen, and now it has been upgraded from a dream to a goal with a plan to achieve it. We’ll get there, and now I’ve got eighteen months to try to somehow write my way to a bigger deposit and even more of a dream home. It’s a nice challenge, and I look forward to seeing what happens.
If anyone reading is looking for a mortgage, get in touch with Stan Sherlock Associates. They were quick at replying to me, and really helpful and, while I’m unable to get a mortgage at this time, they’ll be the people I use to broker one for me next summer. They helped my friend get a good mortgage and were very good with advising me in my situation, so it’s definitely worth having them working for you in your own search.
Another company I want to give credit to is the concert ticket company AXS. In September 2019, I booked tickets to see Rammstein in Cardiff, a gig that was meant to take place last June. Obviously, given everything going on in the world, that didn’t happen, and the gig was deferred to this coming June. I held onto my tickets for a while, because I’ve seen Rammstein before and they were incredible, and the thought of seeing them in the Principality Stadium was very exciting. After the announcement of the government’s staged return to a somewhat-normal life, I realised that the date of the concert was the week before the earliest expected date for this sort of concert to go ahead.
I fully expect the gig to be rescheduled again but, truth be told, I don’t really want to go anymore. Even though I’ve had my first vaccination, will have had my second by the time of the concert and it is open-air, the thought of being in a crowd of tens of thousands of people holds no appeal to me right now, not even for the German porn-metal behemoths. I contacted AXS the other day through their Web Chat facility to request a refund on the tickets. I wasn’t expecting much, given the propensity for ticket companies to refuse refunds and tell people to put tickets up on re-sale sites, but I thought I’d ask the question. I explained the circumstances and my fears, and asked very politely as to whether a refund would be possible. To my gratitude and surprise, they said yes and, after confirming my address, issued a full refund that, incredibly, included the extortionate booking fees. The whole thing was done and dusted in less than five minutes, and I came away relieved, impressed and thankful. It was nice to have such a positive experience from an industry renowned for being unscrupulous vultures, and it goes to show that a little politeness can go a long way.
One of the greatest joys in my life at the minute is how into wrestling my partner’s son is getting. I don’t watch it with him all the time, because sometimes it’s better to watch it beforehand and make sure it’s suitable for him to watch, and sometimes I just like to watch it myself, but I watched some recent AEW shows with him yesterday and it absolutely made my day. I love how excited it makes him, and the elaborate stories he comes up with involving the wrestlers, and I adore seeing how he reacts to some of the things he sees. It makes me wonder if I was the same when I first got into wrestling and, if I was, it makes me happy to think I might’ve been as cool back then as my partner’s son is today. There’s a lot of cynicism among wrestling fans nowadays, with the curtain having long been pulled-back and people as interested in the backstage shenanigans as what plays out in the ring, and hearing his thoughts on the action as-presented brings a smile across my face every time. Here are some of his thoughts on AEW Dynamite:
That will do for this entry. It’s gone 6am now and I’ve stayed up far too late to watch wrestling again and I’ve promised my lass I’ll help her down the allotment tomorrow, so I really should get to bed. I just want to thank you again for reading and engaging with my writing, I’m really grateful and hope that the things I write continue to be interesting to read. I hope you have a great weekend, and remember to tell the people you love that you love them.
Song of the Chapter:
Ohne Dich, by Rammstein
Quote of the Chapter:
“To live a fulfilled life, we need to keep creating the "what is next", of our lives. Without dreams and goals there is no living, only merely existing, and that is not why we are here.”