James Waddington


Bad to the Bone
Dollar Ogo

What about him?

"It was an easy mistake to make"

— James Waddington

"My love, nobody ever accused you of making difficult mistakes."

— his wife

James Waddington is author of Bad to the Bone and Torc, and has had plays on in Leeds, Salford, the Edinburgh Fringe and the Riverside Studios, Hammersmith. His interest in cycling led to his early advocacy of the view that the anti-doping régime in sport is radically ill-advised, and he has written in the national press, and appeared on radio and TV, advancing this now more mainstream view. Otherwise he is not well known, if at all.
"Chi è James Waddington?" demanded Corriere della sera.

What does he say?

The two lines below, which end the famous "Let us live, Lesbia mine, and let us love…" are the only words of latin I know off the top of my head. They go right to the heart of the human conditon.

."…nobis cum semel occidit brevis lux
nox est perpetua una dormienda "

"…for us though, once the short daylight dies,
night is a perpetual sleep "

— Catullus

and this, as Yeats suggested, is a reason to be merry.
We have lived, since the Enlightenment, in an epoch where we are nothing but our bodies, our instantaneous perceptions, our memories, and our brief existences in the brains of kith and kin. Religions suggest otherwise, but religions, for their own purposes, pander to the narcissistic idiot in all of us.
And not just we as individuals are going to die, but our species also. Being merry is not easy. That is our struggle.
I write because, like it is with all serious writers, that's what I do. It's as trivial and circular as that. But if I ask myself what I write, what my pedestrian routine of sitting down every day and tapping away at a plastic keyboard engages with in the ultimate beyond, it is just that; how can we be merry? How can we struggle against the magnificent and infinite absence of ourselves from the universe?
Life helps a lot.
We live two sides of life, we speculative engines.
One looks at what we are, and how we go about being it.
Luckily, so luckily, there is also the immediate; for me, a partner, children and grandchildren, friends, loves, hatreds, obsessions, hobbies even. We have mutually intelligible speech, we humans, and drugs and dreams, music and mathematics, science and painting and all that stuff. That's what we are too, and how we can be merry, and what I write about.