Somebody asked me at a gathering on Wednesday night if I had ever known politics so sad, so nasty, so vicious, so tinged with hatred. I said yes, remembering the miners strike and the poll tax riots and that time of great polarisation, because I know it’s cyclical and that if we fail to look back in history and see that moments like this occur every few decades then we are behaving like a millennial who thinks it was Tim Berners Lee who said, “Let there be light.” But it’s grim, isn’t it? Really grim. And really getting to me today, to be honest. Really. It’s not all about me, of course, obviously not, it’s all of us and again let’s be honest, a mood can get to our heads and hearts, bring us down. Those poor kids. Those poor parents, lovers, brothers, sisters in Orlando. Those poor men, women, children in Syria. Those poor babies in the water off Greece. Those poor children just across the water from here in Calais, unaccompanied and scared. I’m not posting this to make political capital or publicise myself or anything else, or to emote in public, but because we declare ourselves friends on here and at times like these it is good to talk to your friends, to remember the love, and to listen. It doesn’t happen by accident, the love. It isn’t ours by an accident of birth, like our relative health and wealth might be. It isn’t a product of faith, whatever ours is. It isn’t a luxury. It is the essence of our humanity, which needs to be nurtured and allowed to bloom and not suppressed or neglected or blown out by easy fears, but worked at. Chosen. A good friend called Sabine once quoted the writer Tom Robbins as saying life was a choice between yuk and yum. My friend chose yum. Quite right, too. Today it seems like a choice between hate and love. Choose love.