I’m currently stuck in the middle of a mental crisis. I have a talk on medallions to do at the Numismatic Society of Nottinghamshire in three months time and am stuck. Imagine a car on a muddy road. It is bogged down and its turning wheels are doing nothing but adding churned up mud to the growing problem. No forward motion, no smoke from burning rubber (though there will be soon), no panic yet, but a definite feeling of doom.
That is the equivalent of my current mental state. I don’t really like public speaking, but it no longer terrifies me as it once did. I’m not going to add much to the enjoyment or education of the listeners, but they won’t mind, they will just be grateful it isn’t them. And, most importantly, they won’t realise how far short the talk falls short in relation to my original plan.
And that’s where I am. badly prepared and doing nothing. The feeling of doom is growing slowly and the panic is fluttering away at the back of my mind, but currently, it is a mere feeling of unease and I am able to ignore it. Yes, I could use it to motivate myself, but I won’t. I have nothing against preparation and competence, but like many things (bungee jumping and repointing chimney stacks, for instance) I’m content to leave it to others.
Talking of medallions, as I will be in three months time, here is the latest addition to my collection of Citizenship Medallions. Another eBay purchase. It is as struck and comes in a spotless case from the Tower Mint. I’m tempted to discuss the merits of the Tower Mint, its name and its products, and put it in the wider context of modern numismatics. But I won’t, as it’s a subject of limited interest to most people. I will just say that if you see something advertised in a Sunday magazine or on TV (usually by a retired military officer) don’t buy them. Such things are usually available on eBay or in a coin shop (if you are lucky enough to have one near you) for half the original price, sometimes less.