I've just finished reading Russel Brands Booky Wook and it's made me think about redemption. Basically the standard story is this, mixed with the wrong crowd, did a lot of drugs/crime/booze then finally find redemption through success fame and wealth. Basically, society says, it's OK to go through these kind of things as long as you come out the other side with a book deal and a big house in Berkshire. The problem with this is that it can't work for everybody, there just aren't that many large houses *in* Berkshire. No, sorry, I'm being flippant. The point is that we can't all be winners in the game of life. In any game, there are many more losers than winners. Take Monopoly for example, one person gets to own everything and at least 2 people end up with nothing. The sack race is worse, you can have one winner and 8 losers. The grand National has about 50 losers and some of them end up getting shot. For every celebrity who has found redemption through success there are hundreds, maybe even thouands who never got the success and need to find another way to make sense of their lives. They don't generally get lucrative book deals though, so we don't often get to hear their stories. And I guess that is what I am trying to do here. I was a wannabe rock star, I behaved badly, mixed with the wrong people, took risks. But I never found success and instead I had to find another way to make sense of my life and the world - happiness. We can't all be winners or the word "winner" would cease to mean anything. But if you can only find happiness through winning then doesn't that condemn us all to lives of misery? We need to find a way of legitimising ordinary lives, instead of seeing the non-rich as failures we need to see the successful lives that people manage to lead against the odds. Without so much as an Eton education or an Uncle in the Royal Family, some people do manage to lead successful productive lives.