Thursday, April 26, 2007

Wednesday, April 25, 2007


Look at this, the cheeky little feck. The girls' sunflowers aren't even out of their seed tray yet, and he's managed to climb three feet up the greenhouse staging, march across the gridded shelf, shuck off the protective cover and start gorging.

Honestly. Worse, he's right in the middle like the cocky arse he is. I knew I should've put him in the bin when I caught him trying to bungee off the doorbell the other week.

Scaring away visitors is sometimes a good thing.

Sunday, April 22, 2007


Recieved a phone call last night from Ullapool where these people have swanned off to rehearse. They had been discussing that thing in Aberdeen and I am requested to perform work from my book, at the launch, on the 17th, for twenty minutes.

Twenty minutes.


I imagine that the first fifteen will be spent loudly trumping.

Saturday, April 21, 2007

Smokeless Person Update

It is a really large number of days now since I became smokelessly fuelled. Feb 4th - you work it out. On my way home from an immense eleven hour shift yesterday, I was sitting at the traffic lights when there was a rap on my window. I looked left, and a beeeeeeaaaauuuuutiful (seriously beautiful) man was making clickety click signs with his right hand. Winding down the window, puzzled, I looked at him. "Have you got a light?" he said. "No! I don't smoke" I said. "I can see!" he grinned. "That's one of those things you use to stop, no? Good luck!!!"

I hadn't fully realised this was jammed between my lips ----------->

How fabulous. The most gorgeous man I've seen in approximately 32 years, and I'm chewing on a plastic tampon. If you think it couldn't get any worse, Mel C was on my stereo.

Friday, April 20, 2007

Norwegian Mood

The more I think about it (and no, I don't know why I am anyway), the more Norway annoys me. Those stupid little O's with diagonal slashes through them, those vile little open circles above letters, like the ones that teenage numpties use to dot their i's, those stupid burrrdoy-beeedish-beeedoy voices. Bleurgh. I've been to Norway, twice by the way, to a city which occupies an entire island, Moss. It's between Oslo and Fredrikstad. If you ever get the chance to go there, don't. Spend a more entertaining week in a remote campsite in deepest east england instead. Norway stinks. I flew into Oslo and got mugged at the airport bar immediately. Two small bottles of beer - a tenner. Norway, makes you bleed money from every orifice, open your purse and watch kroners fountain out. Fancy a tube of smarties? Ok. Three QUID. Want to take home a bottle of wine? Ok. First, go to the goverment controlled Vin Monopolet (wine monopoly - I'm serious. Something with more than a whiff of communism about this... take a ticket from a roll by the door, take a leaflet printed with the wine list and go stand in the queue. Inch forward, two paces per five miutes. Wait for your number to flash up on a screen, move past the locked (truly, locked)cabinets of Blue Nun and Leibfraumilch, and hand it over to the man behind the counter who has a smiling mouth and the eyes of a serial killer. Wait as he disappears into the back of the store and returns with your bottle of basic three quid plonk. Hand over twenty five quid. Do not wait for change, there will be none.
Walk back to your house, and do not expect to see anyone on the streets as there is no such thing as cafe society. Take in the boutiques along the way. Gawp in astonishment at the leather dresses in shop windows, complete with tassles, beads and feathers and marvel at the utter lack of any fashion sense whatsoever. Notice the one and only nightclub in the whole city, Whiskey Shack, and imagine to yourself the visions that must fill it on a Saturday night. Go out later for a meal with your PartnerAtTheTime - share a large pizza and a couple of beers, and find yourself signing a credit card chit for £170, the tears pouring down your cheeks mingling with the fountain of blood spurting, chopped-artery like, from your purse.

No one SMILES there. Well actually that's not strictly true. Like Vin Monopoly Man, they do smile, it is just that the smiles are like muscle spasms - they flit briefly across the mouth, do not reach any other part of the face, and leave ... no one laughs, no one shouts. It's like an enormous Village of the Damned.

When I flew home the London bound plane taxied along the airport runway in Oslo, then screeched to a halt. "Noooooo!!!" everything inside me screamed, "I HAVE to leave!". Two lorries pulled up, hosed the plane down with de-icer and then the plane took off almost immediately and practically vertically.
What a relief.
Rubbish Job.

Near to the clinic I have on a Friday morning is a shop which sells all manner of useless and cheap crap. There are tons of them here at the seaside, they are in a kind of poundland style, but owned by various local business people. Anyway, I nipped in to this one which is a particularly large, warehouse sized one, to get some latex gloves and nappy sacks for picking up dog mess (my life just gets more brilliant), and as I was walking around picking up bits and pieces (Pantene shampoo/conditioner £1.50, barg) a really loud voice shouted "Do not open the boxes!" I looked up to see a woman standing on a table at the front of the shop, shouting. I was in there for ten minutes (nine more than is good for anyone) and saw several people shamed this way. "Man in the red anorak, do not touch the lampshades" "Lady in the pink teeshirt, do not open the packaging".
This woman is actually employed to stand on a table and yell at punters. Whilst I can see the positives in it (I would LOVE to clamber up on my trolley and shout at some of my patients), this poor specimen was standing on a rickety table amongst piles of 50p colouring books, in jeans, boots, jumper and mittens, making sure that no one buggered up the flimsy cardboard on a box of lightbulbs.
That has got to be the worst job I've seen for a good long while. I wonder if she was the cheapshop poundland prototype for this?

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

London Marathon

Speaking as one who wouldn't run if my bum was on fire, I admire those who would. This bloke is a colleague/boss/friend of mine. Can anyone spare a quid for the Round Table Children Wish?

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Especially for R.

Got to love that poor guy in the tie at 2.40, just right of the guitar. Looks a bit like a bloke that threw us out of the Green Dragon that night eh?


Monday, April 16, 2007

More Disaster in the Midlands

... as I get rip roaringly drunk and then loudly announce how shit the first act is at the Ha Ha Harborough night. My new found love of rose wine has been washed ashore by deep red hot waves of shame, and smashed to pieces on Hangover Rocks. I am deeply penitent. Not about the 'this is shit' stage whisper (ok, bellow) as really, someone needed to say it (and anyway the rest of the night depended heavily on jokes about the (ejected but not dejected) pair (that's you as well Clarkie) of drunken farts that were peacably persuaded to piss off to the pub I am reliably informed), but penitent because it was my best friends birthday AND I was supposed to be showing my daughter a great time. Still, she has her ways of getting her own back. There is a video on her phone of me falling off a bench, burger from Bills Bar in one hand and mayonnaise all over my chops, which I am certain will end up on MySpaz or Youtube.

God. Driving home was horrid. The schizophrenic sat nav that had, the day before, tried to make me leave Harborough every time I actually entered it (maybe the worlds first psychic sat nav) , failed to work at all as we left. Signal too low, it kept announcing. Consequently it took an extra hour to get home, as the turn right, turn right then turn right direction which Fish had given turned out to be useless as the second turn right was closed. I was almost in tears.

Poor me. Poor my friends.

Sunday, April 08, 2007


struck the Midlands area last night, as mental boxer careered into tumbler full of merlot at 60mph.

I have a red nose after lolling in the hammock all day reading This is Serbia Calling. (Matthew Collin - I highly recommend it if anyone else is as a) fascinated by Serbia or b) as anorak clad as me). The day was long, I bought a mini crate of Grolsch and drank it almost all, which was a little bit appalling. Ivoryfishbone turned up with a box of chocs in one hand and a bottle of red in the other. And lovely daughter too. Not sure if the red nose is from too much sunshine or a glut of alcohol.

Nice day. Nice evening. Stupid dog.

Saturday, April 07, 2007

Ever get the feeling you're being taken for a ride?

Chair Dog.

Look, I know we agreed I'm not allowed on the furniture, but I'm just so knackered. Yep, it really does have to be your chair. Nope, I'm not moving. Sit on the floor woman.

Bed Dog.

Oh come 0n ... I'm white. The bed is white. What is your problem?

Friday, April 06, 2007

A Life Less Literary

(driving along, Pesk and Bonny enjoy a chat)

Bonny -
Mummy, if there was a country where everything was really cheap, houses were £1 say, and all food was free in the shops, would you move there?

Pesk -
Yes, of course.

Bonny -
And say, the country was called Pesk-eats-Poo, would you still move there?

(Pesk turns radio up.)

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Details Disappear.

The name of the restaurant and the food we ate that night
drifted away during the years in between.
but I did see him there. My friend heard him first,
nodded gently backwards, eyes rolling a direction.
I swear he looked through the shoulders of his guards, straight at me.
His name alone a force for my mouth to reckon with.
A frisson of sounds aloud, written down, all exclamations.

I wanted to see a halo, some sign of the vaunted integrity.
I saw a man silvered too soon and dropped my eyes.
We’re all old quickly here, said my friend, and
unable to stomach another lecture I got up, walked over
my unasked for hello a shout in the swift silence.
He asked me to sit, and I did.
We shared some wine. The oddest things are still vivid –
In a potato coloured shirt, my friends eyes fixed on his plate
mouth mechanically working through the food.

The name of the restaurant is gone, what we talked about is mostly gone
(The Clash, Andrić, my wispy grasp of his politics)
but I saw him there and he shook my hand.
The sibilant plosive anger later expressed at my stupidity also remains.
Four years on, he ran down some stairs and into a bullet.
The outward dangers were all gone you see.

It’s like this; we think we are safe, we stop taking care.
We forget.

Zoran Đinđić (Zoran Djindjić)1952 - 2003.

Sunday, April 01, 2007


Olya sent me a message this morning which landed straight to my bulk folder, entitled "Privet!" As I spent all day yesterday erecting a fence of chicken wire with which to keep my puppy in (due to my neighbour insisting on a boundry marker of privet rather than wire) if I never see any small green leaves attached to stubby stabby twiglet style branchy bits again, I shall be very glad. I certainly don't want to purchase any more privet Olya.
I also got a link to pictures of Britiney Speers. Who is she I wonder. A Canadian pharmacy thinks I will be interested in D0ct0r Gay, whilst M3dh3lp think that dr. maryellen will make me rush to open the mail. I'll pass. Another says, Don't like Cricket? Don't open this then Pesk. The fact that this mentions me by name is intriguing. But, they're absolutely right, I don't like cricket, so I shan't open. Otherwise I'm sure I'd rush to have a look. Bastids.