Wednesday, July 14, 2010


Wednesday 14 July 2010

Dream: there is an old guy with blonde hair on an aeroplane being awkward and refusing to put on his seatbelt much to the chagrin of the cabin staff.  His blonde hair is long and the man considers himself righteous and rebellious.

This weather is not relenting.  As I awaken this morning again there is a bitter warm touch to the atmosphere and as I look out of the window there are glimpses of the returning suffocation in the form of speckled sun.  If I have ever mocked global warming in the past and/or doubted its existence I am certainly paying for it now, this is karma of the most revealing a kind, a torrid measure and uncomfortable place to be.

Emerging into the day it is with a sense of confusion and disorientation.  Things are moving too slowly at the moment, there is not enough focus and subsequently I am finding I am spreading myself too thinly to an unproductive degree.  I need to recoup fast before the chores in my life become a landslide I cannot get out from under.

On GMTV they are talking about burqas which now are well on the way to be banned in France.  This is not necessarily a bad thing.  Ultimately though I don’t know, burqas and Klan outfits – its all Wicker Man to me.

In the end I get to the station in the most comfortable manner I have experienced in weeks. 

From here as per routine Stare Girl boards the train at Witham but today she is reading a Twilight book.  Damn beautiful people reading moronic books.  This is the end.

Thankfully nobody from Ingatestone gets in my way today, they leave me alone.  Did somebody give them a pack of pornographic playing cards to amuse them on their journey?

We’re back on time as we arrive into Liverpool Street today.  You cannot argue with a punctual train.

As I walk to the tube platform I spot the unfortunate sight of a man with bird shit on the back of his suit jacket.  The worst thing is that it doesn’t look fresh, it looks dry as.  I make the conscious decision to avoid that guy.

There is a true vision on the tube this morning as a beautiful Asian lady sits reading her book sporting the saddest expression I have ever seen.  Her mope reminds me of me but her captivation is exhilarating.  Before she exits at Great Portland Street she begins looking around, looking over at me and I just cannot bring/move myself to smile at her.  By this stage I have already registered that she is not wearing a ring.

When I change lines at Baker Street and the Jubilee Line train rolls in an Asian Baker Street Midget exits.  Am I in for Asian bad luck today now?

Beyond this I soon find myself at work, behind my desk.

Today the bank takes less time to complete as I finally find myself back in the groove of the task.  Surprisingly the boss doesn’t call from Turkey, so everyone wins.

Finally for the first time this week I feel I get back into the real work properly today as I finally (FINALLY) put the April accounts of the new(ish) company to bed.  Its been a long time coming.

For lunch I have fishcake, baked beans and chips in a plate that hardly feels suitable for a mature adult.  I need to grow up fast.

Into the afternoon things proceed at a decent rate, the current rate that is standard by now.

Unfortunately the day ends with The Girl and I tearing into each other.  In code she accuses me of wasting my life and as she reels off a list of places she says she is going to travel to (but probably won’t) she says by the time she is my age she will have developed further than me intellectually due to taking in all this apparent culture.  Basically she does not know what the fuck she is talking about.  From here a tense silence fills the room.

Not before time 5.30PM arrives and with it escape as I head towards Oxford Street in search of birthday presents for dad for tomorrow.

After a phonecall with mum yesterday I now find myself on the search for The Jazz Singer by Neil Diamond on CD, which I promptly find in Bond Street HMV.  However like the tightwad that I am I decide to head to Fopp in the hope of getting it for a pound or two cheaper.  This really is not worth the effort.

From here I shoot through Soho and wind up in Sister Ray, which once more resembles something of a ghost town.  This is where you can see the end of recorded music.

After leaving the shop without making purchase I continue through Soho where I spot a speeding police car storm into the end of Old Compton Street as two everyone stares at two gentlemen tearing into each other in an alley.  Fight!

Predictably I wind up in Fopp where typically they do not have the CD or DVDs I am after for dad.  They are however playing Nothing’s Shocking by Jane’s Addiction over the store stereo that sounds genuinely fresh and amazing.

Once done here I stomp back to HMV on Oxford Street, barging through tourists and people who are generally not up to it.  When I get inside the store they are playing Doolittle by the Pixies over their store stereo.  This is not Coldplay or Kasabian but the real deal, music that is now twenty years old but sounds head and shoulders better than anything current/contemporary.  Grunge and American indie rock won the long game.

Inside the store I soon dig up the Neil Diamond CD and find myself tied into some kind of 2 for £10 deal (ordeal).  All the titles in this promotion reek of middle age mediocrity and a general sense of contempt to innovative and original music.  With this in mind I wind up buying the old man a UB40 compilation that he probably already has (he certainly will already having most of, if not all, the songs).

By now the time is heading towards 8PM as I decide to walk to the South Bank from Soho.  On the way I step into a Starbucks where staff are closing up.  With a smile I order a lemon frappuccino that they make for me on the proviso that I take it away with me.  In the end it is not exactly prepared with love.

As I head through heaviest Soho I suddenly spot Meard Street so I decide to see if I can spot Sebastian Horsley’s front door.  Indeed I find it easily as I pass the black door of number seven that has a rose attached to the door.

From here briskly I step towards Charing Cross Road and across the Golden Jubilee Bridge where I soon end up at the Udderbelly in good time.  This is a Magners fuelled beer garden built from balsa wood and rented/borrowed Astroturf.  It is a real combination of tourist trap and middle class lout lair.  Its bound to end in tears.

Tonight I am here to see ALEXEI SAYLE do some kind of show as part of the festival.  And thankfully upon arrival I don’t have to wait around too long before the venue is open (and thus I avoid incident).

ALEXEI SAYLE remains a good show.  Being a seasoned professional with so much experience under his belt it empowers and arms him with a lot to say and a honed skill with which to deliver it.

Rather than being a straight stand-up show tonight is an event to showcase a reading from his forthcoming book “Stalin Ate My Homework”, which is where he begins with a couple of readings from the piece.  The content is delivered with his trademark sardonic, left leaning, self-depreciating wit.  He makes his upbringing in Liverpool sound quite dysfunctional and colourful and all too believable having watched his wicked persona for over twenty years now.  Such stories of growing up in a red family are surprisingly funny as they describe a strict and truly unorthodox upbringing.  I have nothing on this.

After the initial flurry of words he takes part in a very accommodating Q&A which impressively covers many subjects through his career, all of which he appears happy to address and discuss.

The first question relates to his old colleague Ben Elton selling out.  With a smile from here SAYLE shares an anecdote regarding a We Will Rock You party, not exactly answering the question in straight fashion but offering enough detail to show where he naturally stands on the musical.

After this he clearly answers questions on his (brief) Hollywood career with a Steven Spielberg anecdote through to his (also brief) music career and then unsurprisingly eventually winding up on the subject of The Young Ones.

Off the back of this performance you can’t help but feel the guy has still got it and his career longevity has had a lot to do with him not being a dick.  He even makes the admission that “this really isn’t worth £17.50”, which in a way is an admission that is appreciated.

Eventually we get let out although it is for the longest wait as it feels like the powers that be aren’t actually going to open the doors for us.  Soon though I am stomping towards Waterloo and across town to Liverpool Street in the hope of getting a decent train home.  This does not necessarily occur.

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