I’m Ian Vincent, but most folk call me Cat.
I was born in Gravesend, Kent, UK on Imbolc 1964 of the Common Era to very lower-working-class – and rather confused – parents.
From the age of about 7, I was fascinated by what I usually just call ‘weird shit’ – Forteana and the occult – a sentiment which, through one of those coincidences ended up being directly quoted in Neil Gaiman’s Sandman. My interests eventually focussed on ‘combat magic’ – psychic self-defence, counterspells, curse-breaking etc – which led to my founding the paranormal security firm Athanor Consulting in 2001 ce.
I retired from field work in January 2009 ce. I’ve also been writing and blogging about magic, mysticism, the occult and edge philosophies. Some of my work appears on the groupblogs Weaponizer and Modern Mythology. I’m currently a contributing editor to The Daily Grail, and have been published in two volumes of their Fortean journal Darklore.
My hobbies include a variety of music and movies, much SF, some comic books and far too many awful puns.
The top quote, “Distrust all systems – even this one” comes from the superb Nulapeiron Sequence of SF novels by John Meaney… and it’s the clearest single sentence I’ve ever seen that describes my point of view.
Why do I blog? Well… this is the explanation I put up on my first LiveJournal blog, which still fits.
…so I ended up with a short but ever-increasing list of folk I was sending all the odd and scary news items I find in my net wanderings and realized I would not only save time by putting them on a blog but I could rant a bit while I was at it. And here I am.
The news that catches my eye normally is either Fortean (weird, bizarre, occult) in nature or related to the insane political structures of modern times – and in a world where the most outrageous conspiracy theories are far more believable than the official ‘facts’ our governments proffer, there is a good deal of crossover.
But, some might ask, what’s my stance on all this?
What do I believe In?
I believe that there is no single religious, political or philosophical system that explains everything and is always right – including my own.
I believe fanaticism is a major cause of harm in the world, regardless of what the fanatic believes.
I believe most if not all of those who seek and gain power are not to be trusted.
I *know* very little, other than that assholes come from all races, colours and creeds, and that in a crowded world it’s a good idea to find ways to accommodate our differences rather than war over them.
So that’s what you can expect here. A large dollop of cynicism, a touch of optimism and a lot of wonder at a world that never fails to surprise me. And a warning that some of those surprises can bite.
I live in the Yorkshire town of Hebden Bridge with my beloved wife, the artist Kirsty Hall.