There's many a snoop twixt cock and hoop


I've decided pub quizzes are the new knitting - a dreary fusty old pastime inexplicably revived by sexy young things in all the best places. It's gonna catch on. Really. I've done one two weeks on the trot now and it's utterly satisfying. Not to win overall - we've come 6th or joint 8th or something feeble - but to feel the giddy zing of the individual correct answers. The renewed fondness you feel for your plucky little brain when it squeezes out answers you forgot it had or never knew it knew. Who knew I knew the hydra had nine necks? Not I.

What's all this then?

The Good

Foxen attempting an avant-garde outdoor production of 'Turandot' at night. They're really going for it. Just as the beast sometimes resembles a horse, or a panther, or a bear, the foxen can be reminiscent of crows, or cats, or sexually-frustrated apes. Really you should hear 'em.

Really wonderful albums by Roisin Murphy, Winehouse (it doesn't get old), Adele and yes yes Britney played a blinder the poor LA urchin. (The pathos of her life makes me want to find and punch quite a lot of people, but selfishly I am just glad she managed to lift her head out of the gutter long enough to record 'Get Naked (I Got A Plan)' - but actually really I hope she manages to stick some semblance of a life together. Ain't right.)

Insanely beautiful spring weather - OK, it's cold, but the sun the sun of it is just gobsmacking.

Charlie, Eli and Shreve.

The Masque of the Red Death at Battersea Arts Centre. Went twice. Blundering around a vast building in a mask, happening upon wrong things in semi-darkness, and marvelling at the fact that such a health'n'safety black hole is possible in This Day + Age. I went through a wardrobe and came out in a fireplace, and my inner five-year-old exploded.

The Bad

Office move imminent. Noooo, they be stealin ma view of Senate House! Remember, all change is bad. (We don't know where we're going yet. We have to be out by the end of the month. Haw!)

No but really, why don't they just have us all donate DNA like we donate blood and have done with it? At least we'd get a cup of tea out of it.

There is nothing on television. NOTHING. EVER.

Unfit and listless and helpless in the face of triple chocolate shortbread, chunky and almost burned and fulfilling as something you made in Home Ec class and rescued just in time.

Camden town went on fire. It is going to cost a lot to fix. Much loss of livelihood. Rotten.

The Fugly

(I could make a better delineation here but, pffft.)

A man grabbed my arse in the street a couple of weeks ago. When I politely suggested that this was not decorous behaviour for a 21st-century male, he did it again. When I walked past a couple of incredibly conveniently-placed police officers a minute later, I hesitated, then carried on. Dammit.

I may give up on the idea of trying to buy a flat. Live fast, rent house, leave a beautiful... windowbox. Peh.

There are other things I'm teetering on giving up on, but I'm probably just being a knob. Knob that I am.

Yes, and how do we mark the occasion of someone we sort of probably quite love (a bit) slipping away? We don't. Nor do we have a gothic fit about it although that seems kind of appropriate (hell, and fun). We just go about our business feeling surreal and shruggy and occasionally a little bit teetery.

(I had to perform an unfriending on the Social Utility. It was like having a small online creature put down. Oh, which reminds me... this is sort of beautiful. And I have no idea why.)

I'm going to attempt to follow the example of the remarkably loquacious Louche and blog thrice daily. Ahem. I am telling you now it won't work.

Labels: , , , , ,


Good evening, I am from Essex.

Ha. Ha! Yeah, I know. I KNOW. Perhaps, in time, this will change. And then maybe other things, like so many oversized dominos, all through The Power of Regular Blogging.

The truth - the truth - is that I haven't sat down for quite a few weeks. Well, I have sat down, and I have been sitting down, and I have had several really good and fulfilling actual sits down (an important distinction). But, I don't know, what's that thing about the bad girls not having time to keep diaries? Ugh. It's not very nice, forget I mentioned it. I have been neither bad nor good, nothing so binary, I have merely done behaviour according to a complex combination of factors ranging from indelible instinct to momentary whim. Most of it has pleased me, and none of it has resulted in me being in the free crapsheets looking like hell, so I am likely to continue.

So, to recap. What did I in September? I went to to two weddings. One was an hour late because of the bride's hair which had some kind of follicular panic, and there was extra food and empty seats at the single-dregs table I was on because of an almighty falling out of my mutual friends. We ate their profiteroles.

Then there was start of job, of course, which now feels like it's been my life for ooh, at least eight months or something. Writing about one's job on the internet is not done of course but the salient points include but are not limited to:

1) I can wear what I like and prat about online to my heart's content.
2) The people are in the main terribly charismatic and personable.
3) I eat lunch at my desk like someone who is actually busy.
4) Although once I ate it in the famous Japanese restaurant which occupies the ground floor of the building, and omigod the tofu you simply wouldn't believe it it was like steak.
5) There is a lot of swearing, and griping aloud is permitted. All good.
6) And just as well because it is kind of shambolic in places.
7) It is mostly quiet, however, because everyone witters to each other on IM. Handy. Especially for complaining, and gossip. The water cooler is dead, man.
8) Lots of people comment on the website and we have to deal with the little data-nubs they scatter as they please. In some kind of never-ending avalanche of banality, irrelevance and casual sexism. It is a bit like mucking out the internet.
9) But it's OK.
10) And they pay me quite a decent amount of money, like, every month, without me having to email them five times and call them twelve times and send them letters and hesitate for a bit then take them to small claims court when all other options have been exhausted (including the one with the very big men without discernible necks) and then find that doesn't work either and try not to calculate how much I've spent trying to just get fucking paid.


11) And they do not seem, even after three months, to think I am especially odd. This is probably because they are quite odd. Excellent. Whew.

I've been to lots of things and missed even more, obviously, but the actual managing to go to things is, y'know, good. I went to a roller disco. I was terrified. I went home. I saw a musical. I died a bit inside. I went home. I saw some wonderful bands. They were wonderful. (Look at this site, though. Cor!) Oh and Amy Winehouse too, which just made me laugh for all the people who are opting out of cherishing her as the most important and greatest music star of our generation, refraining from basking in the kind of real awe you can rarely feel in life, and are frittering away their precious glittering and harshly-rationed moments peering up her nose. (Journalists referring to what is quite clearly and manifestly cocaine as "a mystery white powder" is a bit like Jenna Jameson unzipping you and going, "Oh my gah, what's that?" That is cocaine - that is a figurative penis - shut up.)

I experienced genuine irony in that I was undone for an entire weekend by the healthy health supplements taken to offset the side effects of incredibly unhealthy and bad, but oh so smashing ingestibles. That was amusing. Er, and I have settled into some kind of routine of being buffetted by squashy clouds of coincidence, I mean, it is getting ridiculous, y'know, but it's always quite nice even when it is A Bit Scary.

Oh and in the last week I've seen two people, one really rather significant, who I didn't think I'd ever see again a couple of months ago. Both meetings were more pleasant and satisfying than they had any right to be, considering these are people from quite a few versions of my life ago. I also reclaimed another friend from the jaws of nostalgic/bitter friend-oblivion and am very indeed dead chuffed. Naturally I owe most of this to the Social Utility (pecan-studded biscuits be upon it). I can't even really rue it for bringing me the odd bit of sad or grim or nnng or titsup or fucksakes or sigh, even though it has, because these things pale before the frankly disgusting opulence of the peopley luxuries it's bestowed. I've long since given up feeling qualms about how much of my existence seems to involve it in some way, because, y'know, whatsitooyer?

Yes, this is about the level of eloquence we're talking here.

I'm utterly and laughably unprepared for Christmas, but at least the beast has his accommodation booked and he shall have his turkey. He is getting love handles, middle-aged as he is now, only they're kind of around his shoulders, which makes his waspish waist look even more absurd. He now has a nanny in the form of the Wife, who tends to him in my absence and also sometimes makes me porridge of a cold morning, and seriously my tea consumption has gone up by about 900% since she moved in. We are utterly co-dependent, which is extremely silly but great for those slumpy moments when things are sucky. (80% of these occur either at 7pm, or 12.30am. The dank armpits of the evening.)

I should possibly be worried about the things I have presently that I would be a bit lost without, but I suppose you've got to have a few of those, and I'm not adding any more for a bit if I can help it. You don't want too many. No no.

Oh, and I did some actual fucking writing the other night, goddamn. Preliminary stuff, true, but it was something involving typing that wasn't an email or one of these bits, so. So! And it felt like writingy writing in the sense that it wasn't really like me doing it. Or rather, it wasn't like I was generating material, it was all there and I was just transcribing, doing the donkey work with the occasional thoughtful bit of original input to complement the whole. It's positively secretarial.

I suppose I avoid doing it even though it's so clearly what I should be doing, as much of the time as I can. It is somehow risky. Obviously there's the thing where you do stuff and you look at it later and oh the rampant shittitude of it is overwhelming and boring, but the risky element is more to do with poncy ideas of like, Truth. Even though it's fiction. Stuff has to ring true, at least. Have its own truth and stick to it. And it's totally dead easy, it is absolutely la la laaaaa while I'm doing it, and so I trust it to be correct, more or less, because how could it not be - but you've got to interfere a bit and nudge it in directions, because it doesn't know what it's doing, and so how do you know you're acting as stabilisers to the little wobbly bike of your runaway prose and not, like, I dunno, growing a big field of GM crops on the natural earthy canvas of your... y'know?

Bleh. Nonsense. It's only stuff that I'm going to use later to do other stuff with, it is a tool (heh, yes, I know how it feels, etc) and so doesn't need to be Good. But it does need to be Right. There are people involved here. People with surprisingly ghastly childhoods, in fact, but they couldn't be such loveable dysfunctionals without those.

I mean, I'm only making them up so I can eventually throw them off a bus shelter and kill them, without even letting them have sex beforehand, but that's not the point.

If you've read to here, you may have a biscuit.

Oh and the foxen are abroad at night, having decamped across the road. I see them all the time. Usually they also see me. It never fails.

Next time in our non-solipsism special:

Morrissey - why doesn't he just put on a white sheet and pointy hat and be done with it? (Because he's not a racist. He is a curmudgeon. There is a difference.)

Maddy - Kate... police... Murat... sleeping pills... oh, look, a couple have done a massive audacious but totally rubbish life insurance fraud, something to do with a canoe, thank God, clasp it to your newsbosom! And it's great because like no one's died or anything, and look at the symmetry with a person turning up rather than going missing, they've closed a circle for us, and as a nation we can finally know tabloid peace. News lives!

Evel Knievel - oh, I thought he was dead already.

Labels: , , , , , , , ,


Climbing obstacles like old people fuck

Yes yes it's been a month, what of it? So much has happened, but then that's months for you, they have stuff in them, generally.

I have been anointed with an actual job, starting shortly, picking the bits off other people's writing like some kind of baboon. Excellent. I am still staggered at this evidence of my employability. Now I just need something similar to convince me that I'm a writer, ish, and not just an indolent hack who hasn't even been that great at hacking. Oh is she never satisfied? No, but here is a list of things that have satisfied her in the last four calendar weeks:

Green & Black's (currently, butterscotch)

Antony Gormley (wonderful)

Prince (joyous and impish and excessively freaky)


Fat moths

Family Guy

Pastry-bestowing boss

Wi-fi Skype handset

Red t-shirt with guitars on


Yes, those. Also moments of synchronicity of which there seem to be more at the moment. Am I just noticing them, or is this, like, a Sign that something good is going to happen and the Utah Saints are gonna play? Pfft. Fun though and deserving of a new section thingy methink.


Music: Pet Shop Boys 'Being Boring' - "all the people I was kissing, some are here and some are missing in the 1990s..."

Visuals: Poster for book, 'The Missing', seen by totally unneccessary spontaneous crane of neck.

And the rest, well y'know.


Oh so much free crap including:

Some socks with silver in them
Some face goo smelling faintly of fake strawberries
Two copies of Prince's new album which isn't that great but y'know, it's Prince
Box of insane and fascinating Oriental confectionery, none of which is edible, and some of those little paper bangers that you throw at people's feet and do not think we didn't
Two battery-powered massagers (ha ha, 'silent' ones), one with light-up feet
An iPod case, which is very pretty but I cannot use it, having no iPod except that Shuffle which is still in its case
3959879 sundry USB flash drives
A fetching pink phone, although I have to give it back, but it shows birds in the day and shooting stars at night and it pleases me, even if it has no damn credit on it dammit
Bottle Pimm's
Dog grooming vac attachment (yes)


Some gloves, because they are selling them, and they will soon be necessary
Hat, ditto
Some money, finally


A cousin, by marriage
Some new friends and acquaintances (I'm getting good at acquiring those, it's just finding places to put them, y'know?)
Shortly, a flatmate, and very welcome she am


One of the best days of the non-summer, at a festival with terrible sound and 20 toilets for five or perhaps even ten thousand people (I'm not getting into all that again but suffice to say, grrr)

Some nice sunglasses, sat on by someone (anguish)


Oh we're not going there.

I also went to a wedding in the Lakes and had this insane insect bite that made my leg swell up for a week hobble hobble, and saw what turned out to be the world premiere of a brilliant film, and most recently went down the canal, fed swans and gazed upon the glory of shabby old marvellous peaceful London, soon to be shafted by the fucking cursed Olympics.

(Yes and here the font changes, but it is significant of nothing more than my sneaky cutting and pasting and my inability to be Bothered.)

Meanwhile, the straight to hell moment of the week (so it's not this week, so who's counting? What am I, a schmuck on wheels? etc).

I get the bus to the tube, past some flats. Monday there are police outside. Tuesday there’s police tape, forensic suits and witnesses. Wednesday there are flowers tied to the railings. Thursday I get out a stop early to look.

The local papers had the story reassuringly splashed on the front page. It’s when it gets to a note on page six that you start to worry about the area. Although actually anything that brings property prices down at this point is fine by me; yes I am so desperate to property-own that I would live in a place where I had to take a bath in full riot gear. Anyway, it was a stabbing, 34-year-old dead from single wound to the thigh (often happens apparently, hits the atery and you’re fucked). Grim.

The card with one bunch of flowers had a little rhyming message. It did give me pause. It went:

We didn’t always see eye to eye

But you didn’t deserve to die

Now your up in the sky

Hmm. That first line immediately rings alarm bells for me. The bloke was an MC. MCs have beefs with other MCs on occasion. And when an MC dies violently, you do not want to pay tribute with heavy implication of beef. Muy suspicious. It (I thought to myself) really might as well have said

We didn’t always see eye to eye

Which is why

I had to stab you in the thigh


In any case, they’ve got the bloke, or at least a bloke, and he’s going to the Old Bailey. His name is amazing. It combines a classical Greek reference with one of the elements on the periodic table. Amazing.

Labels: , ,


Suicide by drum solo

I should stop doing the surrealistic post titles. It's too much like The Hard Work. And yet, and yet.

The Website, being set up with blog software, gets comments. As with other blogs, many of these are spam, many are shite and some are just worthy of note for their... amazingness. Just saw this in an idle glance:

i did not like girls aloud to go
i was very sad when they went down in lift
i did went girls aloud to go off stage
and i do not like when they are going down
on a glittery lift i was very sad when girls aloud after when they went down lift
i did miss all of girls aloud and i do miss my favourite in girls aloud is cheryl
tweedy when cheryl tweedy sang on stage
i was sad when girls aloud went down on a
sparkly lift i was upset when girls aloud
after go i was so sad when girls aloud went i was going to cry i missed girls aloud so much where are you going to be touring again?what is your next tour called? what will you be wearing on the next girls aloud tour what is the name of your next tour going to be?

Lord. The conversations people have with thin air on there. Asking things of the subject of the posts as if they could respond. It's a bit sad. But that is the internet.

(I had a big barney with someone last year about whether or not 'internet' takes a capital 'I'. I eventually grudgingly conceded it probably does, but I'm more or less reverting to my previous position i.e. only pompous nerds call it the Internet. I may be pompous, and I may be a nerd, but... well, I have my limits. Every day I find a new one.)

Shedfox isn't gone. He was there today. But there is a certain tension of course. How long will he hang around? And what's happened to Shedvixen, anyway?

I should be writing an actual feature at this moment, but having cobbled together some sort of exoskeleton to be filed into shape and slapped with hi-gloss goo tomorrow, I am having some Green & Black's hot chocolate and taking to my bed.

I was complaining as usual to - what's a good blogonym - my friend Walthamguy (that'll have to do) about what a lousy excuse for a journalist I am. I'm a decent enough writer which is why I get away with it, and I have proper principles about use of quotes and employment of grammar out the wazoo, but all the nuts and bolts of interviewing and researching and winkling out I am hopeless at. One of these days I'll do a course and actually learn all the stuff I've been bluffing I can do for years. Yeah, of course, the greater part of it is bluff, fake it till you make it, and all that. I was astonished when I did some proper corporate writing - I basically pastiched what I thought corporate writing reads like, and it turns out that's what corporate writing is. I do have a slobbering bloodhound nose for house style, it's uncanny.

But yes, I'm sorely in need of an arse-kick to that end. Also, to the end of getting to bed on time. Bed is about my favourite place in the world (even with the stale slice of Mother's Pride augmented with chickenwire and coathangers that is my current wretched excuse for a previous tenant cast-off of a pitiful mattress), but I suppose the pull of the PC is hard to resist.

London fell to bits on Friday, with torrential rain knocking out loads of the tube. (There were signal failures and security alerts too, but those we're used to.) The sky was so dark around midday it was like a goddam total eclipse yes it was. Went in a pub at lunchtime and the flagged basement was sloshing with grey water. And! People were still sitting there drinking and chatting like their shoes were dry. Ah, Britain. Britain, Britain, Britain.

There was a humiliating attempt to see another Somerset House gig, thwarted by the uselessness of record companies who can't get guest lists right. We had aftershow passes, ironically and more or less uselessly enough (for anyone who's never been to one and imagines they are amazing, allow me to disabuse you - they are people drinking in rooms and can be lovely or utterly depressing like any other occasion of that nature), so we doused our dolefulness in free booze, and nearly got covered in red wine by a twat in a suit who tipped a glass over and left a lake of the stuff to fester on table-top and floor while he chatted to his stupid friends. I wouldn't be surprised if it was his fault we didn't get in.

The remainder of the weekend has been spent half-arsedly attempting feature and more full-arsedly apostrophe-wrangling - on a print-out, for a pleasant change, so I could sit and make authoritative scribbles with an actual physical red pen. Turfed the dog off the chair and sat under the light with the stereo on. Big black hulking proper boys' thing it is, having been salvaged - legitimately, boringly - from the offices of defunct music mag in 2001. It doesn't see as much use as it should. Put on a Spiritualized thing I finally found after a lengthy hunt (I can't count my CDs, especially not the flimsy packety ones) and did smiles. I've had worse Saturday nights. I have.

Earlier I'd found, after similar scrabble through drawers and shelves, the one CD recording I have of myself warbling. It was made sometime mid-university with a bloke from home I had been in a band with when I was 17 - he was doing some tinkering with some new joybox of some sort so I helped. Astonished to find that not every muscle in my body spasmed with embarrassment at the sound of it. The cringe factor was far lower than all the pollsters predicted. Even the flat notes had that attractive "yeah, I meant to do it like that" thing about them, like... I can't think who but people get away with it all the time. Morrissey? Morrissey.

I should have learnt by now that a great deal of the time, not bad is more than good enough.

Labels: , , , , ,


Disloyalty cards

I must repair the posterlet that I swallowed my pride to stick under the passed-around pen of the band. (The pride went down fine actually, more like a morsel of seafood than a giant cod liver oil pill.) I kept that bit of semi-shiny promo-paper immaculate for six years, through countless house-moves, 300 miles north and back, and then when I get it signed and bung it back up on my wall for the first time in years, the oaf who comes to fix my PC leans against the wall and makes a little rip in it. And doesn't even have the decency to be a bit horrified. (He didn't fix my PC properly either, the steaming berk and clot.) It infuriates me to look at it. A pox on him and his big ape hands. Well, OK, just a minor pox as it is just a bit of paper of some sentimental and now doubtless some eBay value BUT STILL.

So the other day I was on my way to some fuckforsaken region of western London where I never usually go ever, where the tube comes out and gasps for air above ground, and was listening to a song that went "Through southern snow to Heathrow", and just as that line came on the Heathrow express went past saying heathrow heathrow heathrow. I like this sort of coincidence. It's suggestive to me of a tiny signpost telling you that you're still going the right way. Of course this is a lot of old arse but it's a nice thought.

Is it time for mergers and acquisitions yet? And am I going to format it correctly this time?


- Weekend's worth of work (well, more of it) delivered by courier with terrible fear of dogs. I opened the door and there was no one there. The beast had spoken, the man had run away. Dear dear.
- Some bits and pieces from helpful individuals that may save me from hiding under the bed from a deadline, and if you saw my bed you would know how bad that is.
- Cough. The kind that doesn't affect you all that much but kind of makes your throat taste of something that does not belong.
- Lockets (2 packets)
- Invitation to gig (at venue I will always remember fondly for one particular sweaty night when we poured water over each other's heads like the kind of idiots you try to ignore at gigs).
- Some lurid green earbuds, I suppose, by default since they've been left there. They are too big to fit in my ears and look like they are made of the stuff they make jelly shoes out of.


- Potentially, in the next week the Social Utility. Ah, said the fox, I shall cry. But really, I will be so bereaved and so bereft. Like a Bowery bum, when he finally understands the bottle's empty and there's nuthin left. Yes.
- Website job. Only I didn't lose it, it lost me. More fool it. I'm there till the end of next month, at least, and I shall be gathering free shit like a nut in May, so I shall.
- Shedfox. He's gone. He is an ex-fox. Although I hope he's just found a better shed to sleep on.


- Degree of laughable chutzpah, apparently. Have forward-put myself initially for two projects - one already started by someone who needs another person, one only existing in my tiny mind - neither of which I'm quite capable of pulling off but y'know, it's nice to.... oh, I don't know.
- Lipbalm, thought lost and replaced, proving both how disorganised I am and how frivolous with money. Terrible. Terrible.

Labels: ,


Oooo, ooooo, ooooo: Look what you've started

To paraphrase some red-nosed bloke, a band ruined music, music journalism and probably several other things for me and I never even had the common courtesy to thank them.

I'm too completely shagged out to do the quality of waffling I ought, but the whole point is that while they inspire me to all sorts of flights of fancyness, they also make me realise that there's not really any need for it. It's enough to experience these things. And I kind of want to keep it to myself, anyway, because... I'm still not sure why, being a writer and all. But it's like... I could make some money writing about sex, but I sort of can't. Not because I'm a prude about it, but I can't translate my thoughts about it into writing, somehow. And don't want to. Really don't want to. Want to keep it for myself. Even writing about it in generic terms, drawing on the most general experience - just Do Not Want. It's too private. It is.

I feel almost the same way about this band. It's a private pash. A warm-glow, hazy-shared-bubble, separate-dimension-in-which-everything-is-good-and-pure sort of thing. Not that I'm not pleased to find other people who love them, it's just... I'm not into being a fan in that way. It's not really like that. It's not a drooling obsession. I just know that I'm somehow plugged into them and at home with them in a way I've never quite been with any other band, or thing. And it's all very safe - there's none of that sickly lurching feeling of wanting what you can't have about it, the kind of thing that makes girls cry in huge gaggles at airports as boys in sunglasses are hustled away by a hundred suited brickshithouses. Good things can be oddly painful in ways that almost make them worth avoiding. But not this one. I suppose there was some nagging twinge of unfinishedness before I'd interviewed them - interviewed being the operative word, as opposed to just met, that wasn't it - but that's gone now. There's nothing left to do but enjoy it.

See (at this point you may wish to go and make a cup of tea, and drink it, and then go and do some shopping or something) the thing is I am so deeply fond of them that even if things are rotten and rubbish - and we've got to say, folks, we are pretty much up to our eyebrows in landfill at present - they will not only cheer me up but actually make me happy. Really goofy-grin, tears-in-eyes, lump-in-throat, tingle-in-ribs happy. I'd flogged my spare ticket (being on my own, a very bad start) to a tout for a fraction of what it cost, nearly laid out a security git for telling me to 'smile' and nearly burst into tears at another one for telling me to say 'please' (I'd said "excuse me" but I don't think he heard, and I'm such a big believer in politeness too). I'm stricken with a nasty emotional common cold (the one I never thought I'd get, but these things mutate, and this one might be bedding in), mourning the loss of the small but real dream of the website job that died suddenly of budgetosis yesterday, and wondering if there is such a thing as a perfect balance between fluttering anxiety and despairing fuck-all-this-ness. (I'm sure the tension between those two forces works great, like when they find out Monty Burns has every illness ever discovered but they all keep each other from snuffing him.)

And then this band plays, right, and I am not stricken or mourning or bemoaning at all but just gazing and smiling. There was a lovely bit of a breeze (this was Somerset House, so kind of like being the filling of a stately stone wedding cake) and the sky was stubbornly dark blue for hours. They were soppy and said nice things (and tried to get us to sing 'Happy Birthday' to the drummer, ferchrissakes, the soft bastards), and played great, and looked great, and were just great. I try to be objective, but why would I want to do a thing like that? Why would anyone?

I'm quite blissfully aware that I've lost all objectivity with them - I do occasionally try an experimental switch to distant analyser mode, and it just physically doesn't work, like trying to flip a lightswitch with your chin sometimes doesn't. It makes me giddy that I can't see over or around this band - I totally understand why people don't like them, and I'll never try and win anyone round if they're not immediately into it, but all that's irrelevant when I see them. Criticism just doesn't exist. It's real escapism. The only other things that ever give me that complete respite from all the shite (does that rhyme? well, it ought) are the beast, some of the time, and sleeping with someone. (Or sleeping on my own, in fact, but that's rubbish, because no one worries in their sleep, it's cheating.)

OK, there are other small things that successfully disengage me from the toxic gloop, but it's a hard thing to pull off for more than a minute.

The singer was standing around watching the support band (who blew, sadly), straggle-haired man of the people that he is. He more or less remembered me from the half-hour I spent listening to his Steven Wright drawl and tommy-gun laugh. I was pleased to see him and he wasn't displeased to see me, so I didn't feel funny shouting a couple of friendly things in his ear. They are different, I realised that ages ago - they've sort of got the approved organic rock star stamp on them. They're not putting it on - that's who they are. It's got nothing to do with posturing, that's not in their vocabulary. They might not have fallen out of the sky but they could have been pulled up from the earth (I think their clothes were, at least). However, the thing is that I can never tell them what they mean to me - I have a bit of a desire to in a way, but not much. I couldn't articulate it anyway, but that's not the point - there is no one you can really address it to, just yourself. They said themselves that whatever they write isn't really theirs, and it's true - the whole thing is greater than sum of parts and so they're only partly responsible. And they're not supernatural, they are just blokes. The people aren't really the thing, they're just what starts it. The string of the lovely balloon.

I had a better way of putting that, but pfffft.

I don't credit them with making me quit, I realised it was necessary on my own. I think they did a bit of precipitating and a bit of easing of transition and a bit of inspiring. It's not like you can really make a living at music journalism now unless you've been established for years on end - someone today tried to justify his writing for free because "everyone's a critic now, and who's to say my opinion's more important than this guy's in his bedroom?" and I had to flush his head in the toilet five times before the sound of "it's the democratisation of content" finally gurgled into silence. I didn't down tools the minute I heard the twangy rumblings of the first song on the first album. That was in ruddy 2001, so I kept at it for a while, and they were just my favourite band in a way no band had ever been my favourite, but it wasn't any sort of deal-breaker.

Still, whatever else I lost when I threw in that particular stinking soul-destroying towel, I didn't lose them. I was sure a while ago that there had been some natural evaporation, and they'd become a bit more ordinary and banal to me, and they sort of did, but miraculously it takes no time at all to tap back into the way I always felt about them. Which is, just so all-consumingly fucking fond.

My love for this stuff is pure, there is nothing clagging it or compromising it. It's my joy, even if it's momentarily punctured by drunken oaf morons of the kind that go to gigs and run the risk of me punching them to the ground - but never mind them, look at this wondrous lovely beauty of a splendid rock'n'roll nonsense and then blow your hair about by the end window of the tube on the way home. All else is rather a bit balls, frankly.

Labels: , , , ,


July is the cruellest month

The weather is still ass - well, there was some sun and actual warmth and everything this weekend but consistency is the thing oh and sunny proper sun, the kind that makes me complain because I'm usually wearing specs but I'd rather be complaining about that than this. And give me an album full of upbeat uptempo poperiffic choons and I will go straight for the slump-shouldered moody track, and sit there staring out of the window at Shedfox, or the roofy space where Shedfox was until he went off about his foxy business, WITHOUT ME.



Like omigod these amazing boots that I want to, I dunno, put on and walk around in?
Invitation to see one of favourite bands in October
Some really amazing blisters from the shoes that didn't give me any grief at all on my birthday
Box files (4) (like that's anything like enough)
Supposedly, a copy of The Dirt for research purposes but is it here? It is NOT
Details of several nice properties that I will not be moving into soon
Special edition of Airplane! (leading to loss of shit - it really is the greatest. "Joey? Dgy'ever... hang around the gymnasium?")
Times for job interviews (2)


Goodie bag from networking event I didn't get to because I couldn't find the damn place goddammit
Optician appointment (hungover) (but I did summon the wherewithal to ring and cancel)
So much time, to the Social Utility, but it is the bringer of joy
A drift of paper, some of it crap and some of it sad and soggy with meaning, but it all had to go and we're not done yet either
Decorum (modicum thereof)
Composure (unmeasurable)


Most of dignity at Roman-grade drinking occasion, remarkably
Glut of misplaced sentimentality, unprepossessing propensities... inability to use short words where five long stupid ones no one ever uses will do
Funds from stewarding (£20) (although that's not true, it just looks like it because the note is here on my desk; I could not guess how many of its comrades have fallen this week in the immoral financial war that is my life)
Loads of crap that is ripe for the banishing

I can't quite pinpoint what I've done this week, actually. It turns out to be a week off between stints of website cover, although I'm now graduating to between-perma-people cover from holiday cover. The people it is between is the person who has just left and me, hopefully. There is going to be some wretchedness around here otherwise, oho sirree. Well, more wretchedness. The wretchedness levels are pretty healthy at the moment. But the boots help. And will do until I am forced to stop wearing them because the pain, the pain is too much, probably. I should be allowed to wear comedy tigerfeet slippers all the livelong day because my feet hate everything.

If I end up in actual gainful employment - which I could do with because freelancing at present is like being one of those fish sort of half-immersed in wet mud between the spokes of an old bicycle wheel in a drained riverbed going bloop GASP bloop GASP you get the general idea - then I'll have to be careful what I say here, won't I? I wouldn't like to get dooced. (Oh google it, I can't be bozzed as we used to say at school. But the blog of the woman who was the original dooce victim is brilliant and I'm totally ripping her off with the CAPITAL STUFF. I hate caps for emphasis but if I do it in a slightly arch way I can get away with it to myself. FOR NOW.)

Thought: does anyone get dooced for writing nice things about their boss on company time?

Other thought: how do people with proper jobs ever manage to do stuff? Work takes up all their day. It is inhuman. Oh, but I want it.

Lastly: Go Rachel.

Labels: , , , ,