Who would have thought such sweltering heat would have given birth to a fresh new t-shirt company! It's hot here, intolerably so. Worse, much worse, is the humidity. It weighs down upon one to such a degree that all the ceiling and standing fans in the apartment and office have shared sense of inadequacy. Yet this sticky Hades is home to great creativity, particularly in the area of design. Some years ago, when I first started out on my own, similarly unbearable summer conditions gave me the idea for my company name - Swelter. Somewhere along the line, I thought it would be great for a t-shirt brand. Mid last year, that brand saw the light of day and is now being worn by quite a few people (bless them!) from around the world. Today's the day I start to share with you some of the Swelter designs and the stories behind them (hey, and if there aren't any, I'll make them up. You might want to help me along there.) Right now, I have no energy, I'm in the mood for a chat, and I keep filling up my glass with water. Pray for rain!

Sunday, 5 August 2007


There was a line that Dennis Hopper uttered in Apocalypse Now that has stayed with me for over twenty years. It went something like this - "Have you noticed that in the middle of the word 'Life' is the word 'If'?" It's true, of course. Life is full of 'ifs'. If I had more money ... If I'd married someone else ... If I were slimmer ... If I were younger ... If I hadn't been running so late, I would have ... If I didn't need the money, I would be an .... If I had met you sooner ..., If you were younger, ... If you were older, .. If I'd taken the other road, ... And so on. It's a sign of our discontent, I suppose, that we look back on opportunities lost, or ahead at future possibilities, and we use one little word to explain to ourselves why we didn't take the path of our dreams, or why we can't take that giant leap forward and try something new, move somewhere different, change our career, our body shape, commit to someone, break with someone, commit to yourself. Used differently, that same little word can set our course to a much grander life. It can project our thoughts in a very positive direction - If I win the election, I will do my utmost to make sure that everyone in this country has a roof over their head; If I start up a practice, I will make sure that 20% of our work is pro bono; If I dedicate just one hour a day to writing, by the end of the year I will have written a book; If I start up a blog, I will be able to promote my t-shirts to more people and make a few new friends along the way. Ah, the power of 'If'. To excuse, blame or inspire. In truth, life is one long 'if'. It is the unknown. And that is the wonder of it. It's what stimulates curiosity, the urge to explore and learn, and the desire to pack in as much as we can into this dear life, because what lies behind, well, that's another big 'If'.

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