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What should I be most worried about?

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 Steve Crossley 12 May 2022

I am a worrier and over thinker, thanks for the ongoing listening UKC. However I can never remember having so much to worry about;

  • A virus that may make a really bad mutation and kill an awful lot of people, like Billions.
  • Third World War, precipitated by NATO expansion and Putin not being very keen.
  • Climate Change and a population who seem more about queues at Airports than taking steps to mitigate.
  • An economy that seems to have the possibility to go massively tits up.
  • A society, that is massively unequal, with the top 10% not having much of a clue about how the bottom 25% or maybe more live day to day.
  • If there is something else, please do not tell me.

So which should I be worried about, which can I do anything about, or should I just forget all about it and go climbing more. * This is what my wife advises.

24
 Stoney Boy 12 May 2022
In reply to Steve Crossley:

You should stop worrying Steve, go climbing more and learn to love the bomb....

2
 Timmd 12 May 2022
In reply to Steve Crossley:

Your wife is very right, and wise.

The only things you can do anything small about individually are climate change and inequality, probably through your purchasing and voting choices.

Other than that, go climbing more and enjoy being alive.

Post edited at 12:45
 The Norris 12 May 2022
In reply to Steve Crossley:

I dont have a direct answer on how to prioritise, but my wife is a worrier too. I encourage her to express her worries when she is with people to try and help with getting a different perspective than her often doomful own catastrophising. The aim being to try not to dwell and think the worst when she doesn't have anyone around to bounce thoughts off of.

It is challenging at the moment, as the world does seem to be nearing some sort of tipping point. But I guess tipping points can often be the point of positive change too, painful as it may well be.

I guess when you're pondering the worst possible outcomes of world events, consciously spend some time thinking of the best outcome, and also a middle ground, rational, very likely outcome. Just for balance of thought. Can't say it always works, but i think it helps when a bit overwhelmed.

 S Ramsay 12 May 2022
In reply to Steve Crossley:

Lyme disease and decking, these two have the potential to f*ck up your life but you can also mitigate against them. The rest you can't really mitigate against

1
 Tony Buckley 12 May 2022
In reply to Steve Crossley:

In the whole of existence, there are only two things you can change: what you think and what you do.

So I suggest that you think about going climbing and then go climbing.

T.

 ThunderCat 12 May 2022
In reply to Steve Crossley:

> If there is something else, please do not tell me.

What about burglars who break into your house, steal all of your stuff and shit on your carpet?

 Timmd 12 May 2022
In reply to Steve Crossley:

Having a more tranquil mind is something one should work on daily, find corners of space here and there to remember that all is fine, since one is alive and healthy. 

Apparently finding three things to be grateful for for 21 days can rewire our minds to be happier, I'm currently trying to remember to do that.

Post edited at 13:10
In reply to Steve Crossley:

Easy to say but harder to do, don't worry about things you can't change.

On your list the only thing you realistically have any say in is climate change, do your bit and leave it at that. 

 wercat 12 May 2022
In reply to Steve Crossley:

The reduction in service level available in the NHS including dentistry, trumps everything at the moment

this is what will really kill people in increasing numbers

hospitals built under PFI with insufficient beds, years of neglect since the Tory coalition, 20,000 EU NHS workers lost to Brexit, immigration system, pandemic, bad ministerials etc etc

Post edited at 13:16
5
In reply to ThunderCat:

> What about burglars who break into your house, steal all of your stuff and shit on your carpet?

Get yourself onto a local WhatsApp group they will warn you about anyone walking down your road is a suspect burglar, and they have them on CCTV.

1
In reply to ThunderCat:

> What about burglars who break into your house, steal all of your stuff and shit on your carpet?

Or, worse still, those who break in and shit on your carpet.

 Duncan Beard 12 May 2022
In reply to Steve Crossley:

I really sympathise Steve. I've been much the same for the last few years, over the same subjects. Due to personal events back in 2015 I became more prone to stress and anxiety. In recent years I have been shocked how stupid a large proportion of the population is. But as others have said, you cannot do much about the big issues except consider your buying choices & try to encourage others to do the same. Alternatively you could become a prepper! They don't look so daft now. I'm busy with stuff this year but next year I will be prioritising climbing, walking & cycling as they all help my mind.

In reply to Timmd:

The problem for me here is that I think climbing is really bad for the environment, and a totally selfish activity.

Hopefully in the next couple of years I will be able to spend longer periods in the places I like to climb, and travel there by train.

So travel less, and climb like a demon 😃

3
 wintertree 12 May 2022
In reply to Steve Crossley:

  1. Listen to "We didn't start the fire" by Billy Joel [1],
  2. Change the last line from "Rock and roll and cola wars, I can't take it any more" to "Rock and roll and water wars, I can't take it any more" 
  3. Done.

[1]  youtube.com/watch?v=eFTLKWw542g&

1
 dread-i 12 May 2022
In reply to Duncan Beard:

>Alternatively you could become a prepper!

There was a series about preppers on one of the streaming channels. People had their pet doom (tsunami, volcano, pandemic, breakdown of society, zombies* etc). The 'experts' assessed their readiness for the event. It would be interesting to see what became of the after the pandemic. Lots of them had cabins in the woods, food stores and guns. Lots of guns. I wonder how that played out. If they missed the first wave and got hit later, or made it through intact until vaxed. (If indeed they did get vaxed.)

OP:

I'd be weary of burglars who break in, sh*t in your bed, then put the covers back neatly.

More realistically the melt down that is accepted as the norm for British society. Food prices, shortages of many things, cant leave the country (airport chaos or passports or ferries). It's like living in a soviet economy, but without the 5 year plan. Or indeed any plan.

*Zombies. Just hole up and wait for maggots to take them out. (Sorry walking dead fans.)

 profitofdoom 12 May 2022
In reply to wercat:

> The reduction in service level available in the NHS including dentistry, trumps everything at the moment......

No. A nuclear war across continents would trump everything

Anyone who would like to know about the effects of that can watch the movie THE DAY AFTER (the full movie is available free online). There's also a book called WARDAY which describes the likely disastrous effects of a "limited" (quote) nuclear war

Post edited at 14:22
4
 Timmd 12 May 2022
In reply to Steve Crossley:

> The problem for me here is that I think climbing is really bad for the environment, and a totally selfish activity.

> Hopefully in the next couple of years I will be able to spend longer periods in the places I like to climb, and travel there by train.

> So travel less, and climb like a demon 😃

We're all bad for the environment just from existing, but you're not flying on several holidays a year, and driving an SUV in an urban setting, I wouldn't have thought?

You remind me of myself before I'd shaken off the (lapsed) Catholic guilt. I've never flown on holiday at all, I pondered the fishermen in poorer regions struggling due to the shells of sea creatures getting thinner and changing species availability, and couldn't justify it, and even I'm telling you 'go climbing'.  

Post edited at 14:08
 ExiledScot 12 May 2022
In reply to Steve Crossley:

A massive solar flare that could push much of the world back to a pre electronic age with a maximum of 72hrs notice, likely less and limited mitigation measures to prevent it. 

In reply to Timmd:

> We're all bad for the environment just from existing, but you're not flying on several holidays a year.

Guilty as charged. All my mates are at it, and they call me the Tory boy facist.

> You remind me of myself before I'd shaken off the (lapsed) Catholic guilt.

I have never been a Catholic, but was educated in a convent, so have Catholic guilt to spare if any one wants some.

 Timmd 12 May 2022
In reply to Steve Crossley: It's a pest, that sense of guilt, a small amount of arguing against it (or the indoctrination responsible) and telling it to f*ck off can help. 'Go and make somebody else feel bad about existing...'. 

I'd best get on with my uni work, or I'll be full of my own sense of guilt (maybe a small amount is helpful).

Post edited at 14:32
 wercat 12 May 2022
In reply to profitofdoom:

don't need to - I've seen The War Game whilst in a nuclear bunker.

I was brought up with nuclear war.

So far as something immediately likely to rob me of life prematurely the problems with the NHS trump everything.  Not getting a timely ambulance in an emergency or rapid entry to A&E together with more difficult access to GPs for routine and preventative purposes is a real risk, not a hypothetical one (exaggerated by some factions)

Post edited at 14:36
2
 Graeme G 12 May 2022
In reply to wintertree:

> Listen to "We didn't start the fire" by Billy Joel [1],

Jeez. The OP already sounds like he’s having a bad enough time of it. 

 Tony Buckley 12 May 2022
In reply to Steve Crossley:

To take your mind off the world going to hell in a handcart, here's something I once posted back in the days of uk.rec.climbing.  It's to be sung to the tune of the Pink Panther and it will lodge somewhere deep in your memory and come out at inopportune moments.  You have been warned.

Anyway, remember the tune?  Jolly good.  Here are the lyrics.

Climbing.

Climbing.

Climbing climbing climbing.

Climbing climbiiiing.

Climbing climbing.

Climbing.

Climbing.

Climbing climbing climbing.

Climbing climbiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii-iiiiing!

Climbing.

Climbing climbing climbing, cli,i,i,i, climbing climbing.

Climbing climbing.

Climbing climbing.

Climbing climbing.

(Repeat until you get the hint and go climbing.

Climbing.

Climbing.

Climbing climbing climbing.

Climbing climbiiiing.

Climbing climbing.).

T.

 wintertree 12 May 2022
In reply to Graeme G:

> Jeez. The OP already sounds like he’s having a bad enough time of it. 

I see it as making the alternative point - every generation has had a worry over several major crises and a sea of smaller ones on their mind; set against some of the cheesy lyrics, the present moment isn’t that exceptional. 

 stubbed 12 May 2022
In reply to Steve Crossley:

I would spend some time with teenagers if I was you.

They are full of life, ideas, willingness to try; they are liberal and forgiving, passionate about the environment and open to outsiders. It'll make you feel more positive.

In reply to Steve Crossley:

> A society, that is massively unequal, with the top 10% not having much of a clue about how the bottom 25% or maybe more live day to day.

This one, and only this one, and only if you have a good income and can contribute to it by giving to charitable causes, or if you have spare time and can volunteer for charitable causes.

All of the others are out of your control and thus it is best not to concern yourself with them so far as you feel able.

In reply to stubbed:

Do I smell someone trying to find an Explorer Scout Leader?

You're right, though.  Other than that if you do every now and then you say something in polite company that appears to have come straight out of the mouth of a 13 year old, and it's quite embarrassing when you do.

In reply to Steve Crossley:

> Third World War, precipitated by NATO expansion and Putin not being very keen.

As probably the only UKCer with both a PhD on Finnish post-Cold War security policy and a child who just received their preliminary call up papers for national service in the Finnish defence forces, and on this day (Welcome to NATO, Finland! - Day) in particular, I feel I should take that one. And I'd say, don't worry about it too much. Even with the imminent accession of Finland (and Sweden) to NATO, that's not going to push Russia to use nuclear weapons.

In reply to Steve Crossley:

> The problem for me here is that I think climbing is really bad for the environment, and a totally selfish activity.

Humans are generally.  Climbing is probably better than flying to a week's all inclusive in Magaluf.

> Hopefully in the next couple of years I will be able to spend longer periods in the places I like to climb, and travel there by train.

Sounds good.

 Tom Valentine 12 May 2022
In reply to ThunderCat:

What if there is no such thing as"dying peacefully in your sleep". 

How does anyone know if the deceased went peacefully? They might have put up a right struggle.

As far as I know very few people have reported back.

Post edited at 16:18
 Graeme G 12 May 2022
In reply to wintertree:

Fair enough. But that’s a god awful song. IMO.

 ThunderCat 12 May 2022
In reply to Tom Valentine:

> What if there is no such thing as"dying peacefully in your sleep". 

> How does anyone know if the deceased went peacefully? They might have put up a right struggle.

> As far as I know very few people have reported back.

I want to die peacefully in my sleep, like my grandad.  

Not screaming like his passengers

 wintertree 12 May 2022
In reply to Graeme G:

> Fair enough. But that’s a god awful song. IMO.

Absolutely bloody awful.  They don’t make ‘em like that any more, sad to say.

 montyjohn 12 May 2022
In reply to Steve Crossley:

I think you worry too much. There's always something terrible around the corner. We either just don't know about it or dwell on it too much. Need to find that happy medium.

> A virus that may make a really bad mutation and kill an awful lot of people, like Billions.

There's always a virus or bug of some sort ready to get us. SARS, Ebola, Spanish Flu, Cholera outbreak. Who knows, the next Rhino virus (one of the common colds, as is Coronavirus) might mutate and get us. No point worrying about it, they are always there. Just live your life.

> Third World War, precipitated by NATO expansion and Putin not being very keen.

Most worrying in your list in my view, but I think Putin has played his hand and it's weak. I doubt he has the support to attack a NATO country. His aim now is most likely to consolidate what he's done and try to figure out how to call it a win. His legacy will be very important to him after all and attacking Nato isn't going to improve that situation.

> Climate Change and a population who seem more about queues at Airports than taking steps to mitigate.

The only people to talk about climate change in the public domain are politicians, scientists and activists. These are the wrong people to listen to. You should listen to engineers who actually solve problem. Whilst there is no affordable solution to carbon emissions that's available to the world right now, managing the impact of climate change is simply a series of engineering projects. Be it dredging, flood defense, de-salination plants, irrigation systems etc. The important thing here is, do we have a strong economy to deal with climate change? The focus should be about building our economy, included those of third world countries who will need it the most. Don't listen to activists who would stall the economy, prevent investment in key areas needed to tackle climate change leading us off a cliff.

> An economy that seems to have the possibility to go massively tits up.

Ah, we need this for my last answer. Hmm. Well, look at the FTSE100 for the last 40 years. It continuously goes up and down with a long term upwards trend. The next crash is always around the corner. Nothing new here. it will bounce back better in a few years.

> A society, that is massively unequal, with the top 10% not having much of a clue about how the bottom 25% or maybe more live day to day.

I appreciate we are in a tricky spot at the moment with the cost of living, but otherwise the poor have never been richer. Yes the rich continue to get richer, but so do the poor. The difference isn't important. The conditions at the bottom is all that matters.

> If there is something else, please do not tell me.

Asteroid Strike?

7
 seankenny 12 May 2022
In reply to Steve Crossley:

> Third World War, precipitated by NATO expansion and Putin not being very keen.

You could make a start by learning that you are clearly vulnerable to autocratic propaganda and apologists! And maybe read widely and perhaps somewhat sceptically Learning is good. 

More seriously, don’t believe the naysayers who claim nothing can be done. They are half right, of course: individually you can hardly do anything. But social change has rarely occurred thanks to an individual, it’s always a collective effort. Join some kind of political or social change effort and see what happens. It doesn’t matter whether you’re working at a food bank or teaching refugees English or gluing yourself to the M25. Just read, think, listen and do something. And… use your vote carefully.

2
 Moacs 12 May 2022
In reply to Steve Crossley:

On that list, Climate change

 profitofdoom 12 May 2022
In reply to montyjohn:

> Asteroid Strike?

But surely if all the asteroids go on strike, that'll be a good thing? (Are they unionised though?)

In reply to Steve Crossley:

How about the poles flipping?  Or antibiotic resistant bugs? Or TBE reaching the UK? Or UK politics becoming what we consider to be undemocratic?

 Wainers44 12 May 2022
In reply to Steve Crossley:

Worry most about that guy standing behind you.

DONT LOOK WHATEVER YOU DO!

In reply to Steve Crossley:

Interesting post, got me thinking, my thought:

> A virus that may make a really bad mutation and kill an awful lot of people, like Billions.

Mitigate risk to your own comfort level as best you can, distancing, hygiene, avoiding high risk environments as much as you can. 

> Third World War, precipitated by NATO expansion and Putin not being very keen.

Not a lot you can do here other than take solace that the risk was higher during the cold war years and it didn't happen. 

> Climate Change and a population who seem more about queues at Airports than taking steps to mitigate.

Climate change, I am unsure individual action holds any great benefit (grabs tin hat). Current airport queue problems are exacerbated by release from lockdown to travel and staff shortages. The queues are a blip which is exaggerated to make good media copy. 

> An economy that seems to have the possibility to go massively tits up.

Again media exaggeration of the problem, every downturn/recession seems worse than the last. Let the media moguls talk the economy down then buy in like they will and profit in the recovery. 

> A society, that is massively unequal, with the top 10% not having much of a clue about how the bottom 25% or maybe more live day to day.

Vote, support your trade union, its about all you can do. 

> If there is something else, please do not tell me.

> So which should I be worried about, which can I do anything about, or should I just forget all about it and go climbing more. * This is what my wife advises.

Go climbing

1
 seankenny 12 May 2022
In reply to Presley Whippet:

> Again media exaggeration of the problem, every downturn/recession seems worse than the last. Let the media moguls talk the economy down then buy in like they will and profit in the recovery. 

All economies go through cycles of boom and bust - it is a fact of life not an invention of “media moguls”. This current crisis is not worse than 2008, but it is pretty bad and it’s going to have an unusually large effect on incomes. This post makes as much sense as arguing the moon is made of cheese!

2
In reply to Toerag:

>.... Or UK politics becoming what we consider to be undemocratic?

I've got some bad news for you I'm afraid 

In reply to Steve Crossley:

I'm the same. The thing that makes a lot of the worry bearable for me is to take a break from thinking about global stuff too much, and think local - like tending neighbour's gardens for people who are unable to do it themselves, delivering prescriptions for your surgery, doing work for the Woodland Trust etc etc. Even small contributions you can make locally helps to put your list of worries into better perspective. You get to meet real, kind people instead of the ogres that get written about in the media.

Most of all, give yourself time to get out into the hills to walk or climb. Speaking as a bear of very little brain, I surprise myself constantly at how much clearer I can think during and after a day in the hills. It has something to do with the unconscious mind being given more airtime, which also quietens down the deafening noise and humdrum of the conscious. This isn't just psychobabble or new age woo - it does actually work.

 Albert Tatlock 12 May 2022
In reply to Steve Crossley:

Mr Crossley

Look  on the bright side of things,at least your freezer is well stocked up with free venison. 

Albert

 Tom Valentine 12 May 2022
In reply to profitofdoom:

Always the chance of a blackleg, like when the  council traffic wardens went on strike in our town and one particular scab employee had a field day ticketing all the punters who expected a free day's parking.

1
In reply to Steve Crossley:

I'm in no position to preach but top of the list could be *Uploading 'insecurities' to a public forum.

Smoke & Mirrors.

You can't kid a kidder

Cheers

s_m_r

 bouldery bits 12 May 2022
In reply to Steve Crossley:

You should worry about that which is within your control. 

All else is chaos. Myself included. 

BB

 Dave the Rave 12 May 2022
In reply to Darren Jackson:

> Or, worse still, those who break in and shit on your carpet.

Or worse still, those who break in and shit on your carpet, do a river dance and steal your toilet roll

 Trangia 12 May 2022
In reply to Steve Crossley:

Take a leaf out of our (Great) or Grandad's philosophy

youtube.com/watch?v=75rOi6NWrCA&

Smile What's the use of worrying? It never was worthwhile.

In reply to S Ramsay:

> Lyme disease and decking

My decking has felt a lot less dangerous since I fitted non-slip strips.

 hokkyokusei 12 May 2022
In reply to Darren Jackson:

> Or, worse still, those who break in and shit on your carpet.

Or worse still, burglars that break in and steal all of your possessions apart from your camera and your tooth brush.

 Timmd 12 May 2022
In reply to stubbed:

> I would spend some time with teenagers if I was you.

> They are full of life, ideas, willingness to try; they are liberal and forgiving, passionate about the environment and open to outsiders. It'll make you feel more positive.

....from who I've met, seems like they're great at evaluating adults and taking the mickey, too, I like teenagers, they're all you describe, and look at the adult world sideways on, they don't follow 'the done thing'.

Post edited at 21:48
In reply to Albert Tatlock:

> at least your freezer is well stocked up with free venison. 

Don't forget the parasites...

The Yellowstone supervolcano fear seems to have gone quiet.

As has the threat of megatsunami caused by one of the Balearics (I think) falling into the sea.

 Trangia 12 May 2022
In reply to captain paranoia:

> As has the threat of megatsunami caused by one of the Balearics (I think) falling into the sea.

It was La Palma, and we had the eruption last year. IIRC there was no loss of life.

In reply to Trangia:

I don't think the entire island fell into the sea, though, which was the megatsunami scenario.

 Trangia 12 May 2022
In reply to captain paranoia:

You are right, only about 10% of it erupted and larva flowed slowly into the sea, adding to the coast line - no tsunami.

In reply to Presley Whippet:

> Go climbing

Given that going climbing is clearly the preferred solution for all worries, the thing we should all be most worried about is obviously an injury which stops us climbing.

In reply to Trangia:

Looks like we can relax about the mega tsunami threat. Steve will be relieved...

https://www.usgs.gov/observatories/hvo/news/volcano-watch-canary-islands-mega-tsunami-hypothesis-and-why-it-doesnt-carry

 wintertree 12 May 2022
In reply to captain paranoia:

> I don't think the entire island fell into the sea, though, which was the megatsunami scenario.

I don’t think it’s about an eruption, I think it’s about adverse hydrology causing a catastrophic collapse of the western flank of the volcano; there are alternating porous and non-porous structures to the N/S ridgebone of the Cumbre Vieja IIRC, and if too much water builds up in the porous sections it could collapse the western bounding non porous sections and the whole thing dominos into the west facing Atlantic.

Fond memories of driving up LP-4 in a hired Fiat Panda.  Something like one hundred switchbacks, and a rapid tour of desert through boreal and rainforest landscapes back to a different sort of desert.  I’d hoped to go there there with my trusty 306 - which could really wag its tail on such roads - but work never would pay for that.

 Tom Valentine 12 May 2022
In reply to wintertree:

Been there twice recently and the wisdom seems to be that when it goes the brunt of the damage will be borne by the eastern seaboard of North America and that the island itself will shield Europe from any catatastrophe.

Still pretty exciting to scramble up Teneguia and stand on a summit which was only created during my first year at uni.

 sebastien 13 May 2022
In reply to Steve Crossley:

Definitely your wife leaving you because you don't find one telling you to get out more on every street corner! 

No I do not mean you found yours on a street corner.

 wercat 13 May 2022
In reply to Steve Crossley:

ps

Feeding the blackbirds in the garden and spending time observing their ways and behaviour, getting to know individuals and worrying about them and their offspring over the last few years has greatly helped me as a worrit from a family of worrits

(I've only heard the word from older family now no longer with us, from Durham, so I don't know how widespread the word is)

Post edited at 08:30
In reply to Steve Crossley:

We're only here as a species until the next mass extinction event. We might as well enjoy the ride (& try to get our DNA off the planet as quickly and effectively as possible).

 jkarran 13 May 2022
In reply to Steve Crossley:

I'm not sure what ranking them achieves really, especially since several of the risks (economy, environment and inequality) are intimately linked and have related solutions/mitigations.

On the pandemic disease virus front we've never been better equipped technically and intellectually to understand and manage that than today so while the risk is real that's a major positive.

Climate change is the hugest of the elephants in the room but it's lurking quietly in the corner for now, the rampaging bull in musth is our nuclear weapons stockpiles. We need to survive long enough for climate change to actively threaten our civilisations and while those exist at scale that still looks unlikely.

What can you do? Vote thoughtfully. Apply any specific skills you may have to a relevant issue. Even a long life is short, make it a good one, grab your rock shoes, go enjoy it with friends and family.

jk

Post edited at 09:22
 Offwidth 13 May 2022
In reply to Steve Crossley:

I'd recommend studying the subject as at least you know you worry for more justified reasons and can speak out about complacency.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Global_catastrophic_risk

It helped me reduce stress with that subject and the inability of the modern world to prevent genocides. 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_genocides_by_death_toll

 compost 13 May 2022
In reply to Steve Crossley:

Your list reminded me of Hans Rosling's book Factfulness. It's main point is that objective data about all these things is out there, yet our framing of the world is mostly influenced by what we learned at school and the media. And that's the same, whether you work in a climbing shop or in the UN Security Council.

Fundamentally, the world is getting better. 

As an example, in the last 20 years the proportion of the world's population living in extreme poverty has almost halved. 

His quiz gives more examples: https://factfulnessquiz.com/ For the record, monkeys at typewriters should score 33%. A group of UN delegates and the Nobel prize committees scored worse than monkeys. Humans are a bunch of pessimists!

Post edited at 09:30
 Mark Edwards 13 May 2022
In reply to Steve Crossley:

I think it’s the things you don’t expect that are more concerning. Here I am all tooled up for the zombie invasion (or perhaps roaming gangs of youths, which is probably about the same thing, but apparently zombies are harder to kill) but never did I expect that the things I would really need are face masks and bog roll.

1
In reply to Steve Crossley:

The expression is "a happy wife equals a happy life"

Keep your wife happy. She's instructing you to worry less and climb more. So what choice do you have?

GO CLIMBING MORE! And assuming she climbs also, take her climbing more!

In reply to Mark Edwards:

I bet you're not prepared, when the Zombie apocalypse comes, shops will sell out of felling axes and chainsaws the same day.

How many of each do you have, do you keep spares in the boot of you car? You see .. not prepared. Now get that shopping trolley, go to Toolstation and load it up with as many axes and chainsaws as you can. If they ask - just say "zombies" in a hushed voice while tilting your head and tapping the side of your nose in a knowing way. They'll understand...

Post edited at 10:15
 Fat Bumbly2 13 May 2022
In reply to CantClimbTom:

Don’t forget the golf clubs

 seankenny 13 May 2022
In reply to compost:>

> His quiz gives more examples: https://factfulnessquiz.com/ For the record, monkeys at typewriters should score 33%. A group of UN delegates and the Nobel prize committees scored worse than monkeys. Humans are a bunch of pessimists!

Why would you expect a bunch of experts on cutting edge physics or literature to be aware of trends in development, which is most of what that quiz covers. That’s a silly metric. 

 compost 13 May 2022
In reply to seankenny:

Want a bigger list? He tested the same questions with policy advisers, elected politicians, bank and hedge fund managers with international investment portfolios and so on. It just to happened that the Nobel laureates scored worse than almost anyone else, so I thought it interesting that the same dogmatic views are held by people with a scientific leaning.

I'm not here to sell his book - but I definitely recommend it for practical recommendations for looking at the world using data rather than dogma.

1
In reply to jkarran:

> On the pandemic disease virus front we've never been better equipped technically and intellectually to understand and manage that than today 

Shame that technical understanding isn't matched in the area of political competence...

 seankenny 13 May 2022
In reply to compost:

> Want a bigger list? He tested the same questions with policy advisers, elected politicians, bank and hedge fund managers with international investment portfolios and so on. It just to happened that the Nobel laureates scored worse than almost anyone else, so I thought it interesting that the same dogmatic views are held by people with a scientific leaning.

> I'm not here to sell his book - but I definitely recommend it for practical recommendations for looking at the world using data rather than dogma.


But it’s not about having dogmatic views, this about testing knowledge of a very specific domain. Why would I expect a banker to know about the exact levels of average education? Why should a policy advisor in say U.K. education know about trends in humanitarian disasters?

FWIW I spent a long time working in humanitarian aid and international development and I’ve studied development economics at graduate level. Lots of my professional life has been about the stuff on this quiz, and I still got questions wrong because what the heck do I know about endangered animals or the details of vaccination rates?! I’m all for people learning more about the world but the assumption this should be general knowledge is well shy of reality.

In reply to seankenny:

And the important point is to understand that you don't know everything, and know how to find information, and when to consult experts.

A lesson our politicians could learn, as well as voters who expect them to know everything, and have instant, perfect answers for everything.

 Timmd 13 May 2022
In reply to blurty:

> We're only here as a species until the next mass extinction event. We might as well enjoy the ride (& try to get our DNA off the planet as quickly and effectively as possible).

Anybody with children seems to take a different perspective, I've noticed. I'm a funny contradiction, I'm wanting to work in conservation, in 'community engagement' type things, but that's because I like people and nature, and I still think we're doomed, other conservation people seem to think there's hope (I'm on the fence). Helping make people happier from engaging with nature is pretty cool though.

It'd be nice if we could sustain conditions that can support human life, during this brief window of time for humanity to be able to create, and think, and make sense of the earth and the universe around us.

Post edited at 12:57
 Timmd 13 May 2022
In reply to CantClimbTom:

A lecturer at my university (not for any of my classes) frames some of his lectures as preparing for a zombie apocalypse, because the alternative scenario of societal breakdown due to climate change is too gloomy for him. For Sustainable Development classes I think.

Post edited at 17:30
1
In reply to Steve Crossley:

Thanks for all the replies. I am off climbing and going to stop reading the news, bollocks to the lot of them.

 Albert Tatlock 13 May 2022
In reply to Steve Crossley:

> Thanks for all the replies. I am off climbing and going to stop reading the news, bollocks to the lot of them.

I’m just so worried about the Wagatha libel trial, who will win ?

 ExiledScot 13 May 2022
In reply to Albert Tatlock:

> I’m just so worried about the Wagatha libel trial, who will win ?

The lawyers of course. 

1
 Tony De Luca 13 May 2022
In reply to Steve Crossley:

If you had to bet on the future, based on past trends, you'd have to feel pretty optimistic.

 jiminy483 14 May 2022
In reply to Steve Crossley:

Smoke some crack. Within a few days the only thing you'll worry about is crack.

 henwardian 14 May 2022
In reply to Steve Crossley:

> I am a worrier and over thinker, thanks for the ongoing listening UKC. However I can never remember having so much to worry about;

> A virus that may make a really bad mutation and kill an awful lot of people, like Billions.

Don't worry. It's not going to happen. All of history's really big killers in terms of percentage (e.g. bubonic plague) can be treated now pretty easily. And things like spanish flu and covid are all pretty low percentage killers, so you and most everyone else you know will be fine if another one comes along. Worst-case scenario is a few hundred million dead and that wouldn't have much effect on the world at large so not worth worrying about unless your house is next to a field that would make a good mass grave.

> Third World War, precipitated by NATO expansion and Putin not being very keen.

Don't worry, Putin and Russia are struggling to make any headway at all in Ukraine. The war will grumble on for months or years but it isn't going to light up because pressing the red button would guarantee the end of Putin's regime and it isn't going to spread because the idea Putin would open up a second front when they are doing so badly in Ukraine is pretty unrealistic. Besides which, you are in the UK so literally thousands of miles from anywhere that might come under attack.

> Climate Change and a population who seem more about queues at Airports than taking steps to mitigate.

Don't worry, you live in the UK. Unless you built your house on the beach or a cliff edge you will be absolutely fine. And even if you did, all you have to do is go build a new house somewhere more sensible. Do your bit, trust that others will do their bit and vote for candidates who at least proclaim they will try and do their bit and altogether it will work out in the end. A warmer earth - yes. A catastrophe for people in the UK - no.

> An economy that seems to have the possibility to go massively tits up.

Don't worry, every economy always has this possibility and periodically there is a big national or global crash. And then growth again. This really is completely normal, why would you ever worry about it?

> A society, that is massively unequal, with the top 10% not having much of a clue about how the bottom 25% or maybe more live day to day.

Don't worry, you're probably totally wrong about this one off the bat!

> If there is something else, please do not tell me.

Yellowstone eruption, global killer asteroid, terrists (as the Bush used to say), solar storm, black hole at the LHC, overpopulation, blah blah, etc. etc.

> So which should I be worried about, which can I do anything about, or should I just forget all about it and go climbing more. * This is what my wife advises.

Don't worry about any of them and GO CLIMBING!!

2
 ExiledScot 14 May 2022
In reply to henwardian:

I wouldn't lump yellowstone and a large solar flare in the same bracket, one may happen and whilst the press will describe it as over due,  that's on a geological time scale, this afternoon or perhaps sometime in the next 100,000 years. Flares run in 12 yearly cycles, currently heading towards a peak around 2025, but it has been building quicker than some previous cycles. Whilst it's still a game of chance, sun facing the right way, magnetic field on the sunspot at the time of flare, ideally a flare in the 24hrs before the big one to clear debris out of space so to speak (faster travel and less energy loss for the one immediately after), but there are frequently flares, most auroras are from flares, electrical infrastructure has been damaged in the past, so it's very much a when, not if at a vastly greater likelihood than yellowstone blowing. It still won't kill off the species, but it could change things politically, as they are directional and for a finite period, it might wreck usa electrics, but not China, or vice versa, it's purely down to the spin of the earth when it hits and duration (simplified a little).

Even asteroids, a 13m lump came between us and the moon 4 days ago, 0.2 the distance away which is pretty close. Miniscule compared to extinction causing events, but it could ruin you afternoon climbing if it hit nearby. Realistically though stats wise, it's far less likely than volcanic events that we will all be wiped out by one, with or without Bruce Willis.

https://spaceweather.com/

More standard activity is likely the biggest threat, the world is heavily populated, we live almost from one harvest to the next, as Ukraine is highlighting, even a modest volcanic eruption that puts a lot of ash in the atmosphere and causes cooling or reduced sunlight just for 1-2 years would be devastating. We wouldn't starve entirely, the likely displacement and wars could kill more though.

Post edited at 06:35
 GrahamD 17 May 2022
In reply to Steve Crossley:

I would be worried that my reasoning was so far adrift that I saw NATO expansion as the cause of the heightened threat of WW3, rather than the result of.

2
 wercat 17 May 2022
In reply to Steve Crossley:

sing along with this

youtube.com/watch?v=6ixdPnLFVIo&

In reply to wercat:

I am more a Country boy TBH  youtube.com/watch?v=W4xNuO4T3w0&

Byee for now, off climbing.

 wbo2 17 May 2022
In reply to Steve Crossley: three , four and five, but you should just live honestly with yourself, and do what you can.  Then go climbing.

But don't catch monkey pox. Or avian flu.

If you really do think that the rise of fascism in Russia is NATO's fault I would say you really should consider what you're reading.  Do you think it's NATO's fault they persecute LGBT people and racial minorities f. eks?

1
 cb294 17 May 2022
In reply to Steve Crossley:

You should be very worried about a giant space goat that is about to eat our planet. Try and find out whether evacuation arks are available.

More seriously, of your list, climate change is definitely both worth worrying about and acting on. Regardless of what others say, your own actions do make a difference, so by all means go climbing, but maybe the Peak district rather than flying to Kalymnos twice a year....

CB

1
 Billhook 17 May 2022
In reply to Steve Crossley:

There's little point in worrying about things you can't control.

Concentrate on your enjoyment - you can control that!

3
 Flinticus 17 May 2022
In reply to Timmd:

> Your wife is very right, and wise.

> The only things you can do anything small about individually are climate change and inequality, probably through your purchasing and voting choices.

> Other than that, go climbing more and enjoy being alive.

Enjoy being alive...that's what I'm trying to get to. Having over thought the meaning/purpose of life, I've concluded that Shakespeare's "to be or not to be' should be my guide. Do I want to be? Yes...then I should accept that is all and not seek meaning. I want to be because the opposite is unacceptable and I'd miss my wife, dog, friends and climbing. My search for a purpose (beyond enriching the lives of other sentients) is barking up the wrong tree, a dead end.

 peppermill 17 May 2022
In reply to Steve Crossley:

Can I control what I am worrying about or if it's something that's far bigger than my little life can I be part of the solution?

If No-shake head like an Etch-A-Sketch and put the problem out of my mind.

If Yes-do something about it.

Eg-If I'm bad at something important, no point whining and stressing, get better. 

Another example would be when I was a (responsible) campervan owner I felt like I was part of a completely daft unsustainable problem in Scotland. So I got rid of it.

Post edited at 17:27
2
In reply to Steve Crossley:

Vic Reeves was most worried about hoards of ants attacking his Victor Mature workbox

 Timmd 17 May 2022
In reply to Flinticus:

A relative came out with 'enjoy yourself, try and make a positive contribution, and to cause as little hurt or harm as possible' as a maxim, which also seems to fit.

In reply to Steve Crossley:

If you’re worrying a lot, the first three might help - hopefully:

https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p03rwr72 How to manage your worries [3mins]

https://healthypsych.com/psychology-tools-schedule-worry-time/

https://www.nhs.uk/search/results?q=worry (some links similar to above, others N/A)

https://philosophybites.com/2015/06/william-b-irvine-on-living-stoically.html [...] Another strategy is when you divide the world into [1] the things you have control over, [2] the things you have no control over at all, and [3] the things you have some control over. You don’t need to worry about [1] [or] [2], so you put most of your efforts into [3] [...]

^ from ~11:00 of the podcast (14mins). I've added the numbers ...

 freeflyer 18 May 2022
In reply to Steve Crossley:

> So which should I be worried about, which can I do anything about, or should I just forget all about it

You are in good company. I remember a cartoon involving a goldfish bowl that went something like this:

Husband fish: You seem preoccupied. Have I done something wrong?
Wife fish: No.
HF: Is there something that I haven't done that I should have done?
WF: No.
HF: Is there something that I should do that I haven't done?
WF: No.
HF .... Is there something that, although I don't need to do it, if I didn't do it I would be wrong?
WF: Possibly.
HF: I knew it.

In reply to Steve Crossley:

I worry about a giant boulder taking me out at the bottom of a crag. I was below  Dinas Mot years ago when an absolutely giant boulder crashed into the screes not far away. It made a whirring noise as it fell. There were various people dotted around below the crag, some closer than me. No-one saw it coming. It was really fast

In reply to Steve Crossley:

I find it helps to stop thinking of these as separate risks but see them as interconnected and interdependent facets of a larger threat to global civilisation. That way I only have one thing to worry about.

 Maggot 21:54 Wed
In reply to Steve Crossley:

> What should I be most worried about?

A stressed out middle aged, middle management man?

Impotence.

 Timmd 11:02 Thu
In reply to climbingpixie:

Good thinking, with something small but helpful one can do about it.

 Offwidth 11:28 Thu
In reply to climbingpixie:

I sort of do similar for slightly different ends: so that worries get into context and can be sanely controlled. Maybe it's old fashioned but as a citizen I see it as my role to be informed about risk and where risks are large, read up or talk to experts. Where risks can be influenced we should speak about them proportionately to educate others.  Risks include everything.... if I obsessed on asteroid impacts and ignored my family and friends that would be foolish as the former (although potentially catastrophic) is low risk, uncontrollable and well known and the second could be significant, high risk, partly hidden and where my intervention could really help. Interlinking is really useful as actions in one area can help others.

Another example of a warning that is important but most won't even know about, let alone worry about, cropped up today in a Guardian article about risks of regulation failure in food capitalism (one of the biggest risks to global human life). I don't think Monbiot is expressing the system issues quite right but the big picture is spot on. People should read it and talk about it and campaign on it.

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2022/may/19/banks-collapsed-in-2008-food-system-same-producers-regulators

I don't support the 'play ostrich and just live' views at all. Those who live with sensible proportionate attitudes on risk usually live fulfilled lives and those trying to play ostrich usually don't. Recognition of both those who obsess about some risk foolishly and those who are oblivious to risk is highlighing individual behaviours that probably needs some help.

Post edited at 11:32
 Myfyr Tomos 10:30 Sun
In reply to Steve Crossley:

Spurs losing at Norwich this afternoon and Everton not turning up at Arsenal!

Post edited at 10:33
 wercat 18:37 Sun
In reply to Offwidth:

This is going to get worse. Ukraine's farmers are unable to empty their silos of the last grain harvest which causes a global shortage item one.  Item two is the resulting inability to gather this year's harvest (those whose machinery has not been stolen by the orcs) because of the already full silos, which will thus double the amount lost to the world food supply.

We are actually in World War III - Russia is waging war on the Entire World by its actions and it is time those nations in the world who have the power escalated action against Russia's crime, effectively a planetary level crime, now.

It needs to made clear to Russia by those nations that it is not possible for them to allow Russia to take, control and deny the Ukraine coast to Ukraine and the trading nations of the world.

This needs to be made plain now

Post edited at 18:38
2
 ExiledScot 18:56 Sun
In reply to wercat:

I doubt Putin cares, he could be high on end of life palliative care drugs for all we know, he's beyond reasoning. 

 artif 19:26 Sun
In reply to Steve Crossley:

What should you be worried about.......

Toasters....

Toasters are far more dangerous than sharks, get rid of your toaster immediately.

 Maggot 20:34 Sun
In reply to ExiledScot:

> I doubt Putin cares, he could be high on end of life palliative care drugs for all we know, he's beyond reasoning. 

And he won't give a shit about pressing the big red button.

Dangerous times.

1
In reply to Steve Crossley:

Just in case any one is worried, I get out climbing plenty, and generally do not give a toss, just like a good moan/argument, it's an age thing, I am nearly 60 you know.

2
 ExiledScot 20:43 Sun
In reply to Maggot:

> And he won't give a shit about pressing the big red button.

> Dangerous times.

Yes and no, they've had nukes how long, invaded how many times, even now after putins 2-3 week special operation has turned into months they haven't gone nuclear. He and his military know there are lines not to cross, he'll just level cities slowly without nukes. 


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