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I spent bonkersfest screwing a lightbulb into the sky and was successful in bringing more light into the world - literally.

The sun came out!

Posted by Nat Rand, 30 July 2008

Last modified by Colin Hambrook, 22 November 2013


Well, it is online now. Despite the fact I had a cold, that my shirt collar was upturned, and my hair kept getting into my eyes, I thought it was a good interview. (There is a point in the interview where Ruby brushes the hair out my eyes, which I thought was very sweet of her.)

We actually talked for about an hour and I liked the fact she asked about how humour has helped me. I keep getting told off for talking about humour and madness in the same breath, and I have even had people say to me, 'Do you think my pain is funny?' Of course I don't. My humourous take is on my madness, and the laughability of the mental health system and people's ignorance about madness. I think I should be the world's first schizophrenic stand-up, as Ruby suggested, and I will give her the 10% she asked for! Ruby and Dolly

To see the interview go to the BBC Ruby's Room website

Posted by Nat Rand, 26 July 2008

Last modified by Nat Rand, 26 January 2009


eeen jjalpwdla[ kjdf[asewr eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee a fjjjjjjjjjjjjjj csdapeorepa (as u kan see I am to knicknackered to right..........)

Posted by Nat Rand, 22 July 2008

Last modified by Nat Rand, 26 January 2009


Waking up this morning has kind of answered the question I posed in my last blog. I can see the London skies are grey now but they weren't when I opened my eyes. Reality changed its mind this morning.

The colours of at my window waxed deeper, stronger, wilder; the skies were the colour of a thousand setting suns reflected in the swirl of melting glass; every particle of air had its own individual, unequivocal jewel. Birds were flying free Free FREE across the skies. Trees turned into giant flowers under a hallucinated sky and kaleidoscopic sun. Trees burned with Vietnam War radiance, with the terrible haloes of a million animals burning to death. This strange morning greeting reached its electrical peak, like a Hendrix riff pulled so wild it snaps. It wasn't just a visual experience, it was a strong mental one. I had the idea that death is a strange art, and living is the work of that art. The comedown took the lift and its muzak, but was pleasant in itself. The light in my room was so sweetly nameless, so painful, so lonely; it haunted and then faded away – not unlike the human soul, eh?

Psychosis gave me a gift this morning.

Now I am getting ready to go out and the skies are grey again...

Posted by ben paley, 15 July 2008

Last modified by ben paley, 10 June 2009


Allo people, these last few weeks have been busy in the House of the Insen. I was interviewed for a Sunday Times article about pushing madness into the limelight. You can read it online at

The reason the article was written is because the 3rd Bonkersfest is on this Saturday 19th July on Camberwell Green. BonkersFest! is a free annual one day summer arts and music festival, illuminating and celebrating madness, creativity, individuality and eccentricity; combating stigma and promoting good mental health.

Armed with nothing more than a stepladder and a light bulb, I will attempt – at set periods during the day – to screw the lightbulb into the sky. I am doing this because the world needs more light. To quote Groucho Marx - 'Blessed are the cracked, for they shall let in the light'.

If you are attending, come say hello to me. I will be very easy to recognise: I will be holding a lightbulb. The Bonkerfest website is

I will also be interviewed by Ruby Wax this week for the Headroom Campaign on the BBC website. More info when I have actually done the interview and know when it is online.

I know I am a professional mad person, but is being a workaholic in this area good or bad!

Posted by ben paley, 14 July 2008

Last modified by Anonymous, 23 June 2009


Next week is my dog's birthday. Her name is Lux and she will be 3. She is half Staff and half Whippet, so she is a Snippet. She came to my family as a rescue dog who had lived with some junkies who didn't feed her and totally ignored her. She was as skinny as hell when we first saw her and became distressed whenever you turned your back on her. What a horrible start to a life.

Those who have read my memoir will know I had similar beginnings. But she, like me, has come through that to be an artist and crazy being. She is a sculptor. Her work is mostly comprised of sticks from my garden and bits of my living room carpet. So here's to you Lux, happy birthday, my darling.

Posted by ben paley, 10 July 2008

Last modified by Colin Hambrook, 20 August 2010