That would be Catalan astronomer Guillem Anglada-Escudé, of course, one of the world's top scientists, a pioneer, a genius, trying to discover the future.
#I like to think of myself more of a hippy than a punk. I'm tactile, allergic to razors, happily pre-occupied with detail and things I am close to, while also frequently a cosmic dreamer.
What is unmanageable is the middle distance, the blur of social nonsense dominated by the human condition of self-obsession - to be compulsively (or reluctantly) immersed in the repetitive fatuous actions of our species.
I try and keep up with (and be positive about) social evolution and try and stand up for what I think is logical (member of Greenpeace for example), but, man, it grows increasingly hard, chiefly because we never seem to learn; and especially now when, yet again, there seems to be a heightened zeal for intolerance. As Plato's Republic defined, these manic days , these dangerous stupidities, were predictable. Little comfort.
My nearest and dearest fan around me in beautiful circles – my family at the heart, my friends, my village and wider community here in The Priorat and in familiar pockets around the world. And I include my immediate wild environment in this deep appreciation, the complexities and wonders of the smallest things from the weave of a bird's nest to the purring wings of a labouring carpenter bee.
All of the above make me mindful. When I am with them or think of them, I can manage. But too much exposure to the precarious state of humankind, of news overload and imaginings of dire destinies, I need to step out into nature, often into the night.
No light pollution up here in the hills. Venus has been stunningly bright through January into February. It is close, the nearest planet, and yet so far, a measure of how insignificant this pantomime on a pea really is. And then, jaw gaping, neck locked back, I wander through the arc of infinity, mentally adrift in space, always overwhelmed by the fathomless mysteries until I fall over the wheelbarrow or a bucket.
Given my time again I would like to be Guillem, or at least to be blessed with the deep intelligence and insatiable curiosity of someone like him. That would be Catalan astronomer Guillem Anglada-Escudé, of course, one of the world's top scientists, a pioneer, a genius, trying to discover the future.
Did you know, for example, that the closest exoplanet to us which may also be the closest possible abode for life outside the solar system, is called Promixa b? Guillem found it and named it last year, to rightful excitement and acclaim. He and his team of astronomers from Queen Mary University, London, are now going to see if they can find signs of life there. How cool is that?
Catalonia at the forefront of science yet again. Out of sight.
I was going to joke that Guillem was neither hippy nor punk but a rock star, but that would be dreadful.