Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Tuesday 10 August 2010


Tuesday 10 August 2010

I’m feeling energy drink caffeine gut rot again this morning.  Without doubt this is down to the cans of Kick I have been downing.  This is foul stuff, best avoided.  I however am too foolish to do this.  The can claims “no artificial flavours or colours” which is probably why it has such a gnarly affect.  Bring on the chemicals.

Again this morning as I leave my flat my building stinks.  I cannot decide now if it is the bin bags or if it is my neighbours smoking profusely or a combination of the two.  It doesn’t help that 15 Hollytree Court keeps closing the windows on our landing that I open in the hope of them letting in fresh air and getting rid of the stink.  Just how am I expected to explain this should I decide to put my flat on the market (as I have been heard to murmur recently)?

Despite this misery when I leave the building I have the Caddyshack theme (“I’m Alright”) playing in my head so all feels well.

For some reason the cars on the road today are just retarded.  What happened to velocity?  What happened to urgency?  Did all their accelerators break at once?  These people have no dicks.

When I finally get to the station a car does not bother to acknowledge me at a mini roundabout when it comes from the right and I almost make an example out of him as an urge to drive into him tempts me.  In the end I just mouth the words “give way to the right” as I pass.  Why can’t all drivers be perfect like me?

Within seconds karma however catches up on me (fails me) as both of “my spaces” are taken at the car park.  Why the sudden run of popularity on these places?

Despite this I soon find myself on a train with us both appearing to be on autopilot.  An early hiccup sees the train soon slowing down, to the point that when it crawls through Kelvedon it rolls teasingly slow to the point that the locals think they may be able to get on.  It is at this point that I spoke Kelvedon Bike Man for the first time in probably over a year.  He’s still around?

In addition to this farce early into the journey the heavens open and it begins raining which all in all scuppers morale for the day.

Eventually we get to Shenfield where a lady decides to sit next to me but thankfully does not plate crowd.  I’ve had it too good for too long now it would seem.

From here it doesn’t take long to get to London as the train appears to put some effort into making up time/pace.  Soon before I know it I am aboard a tube speeding across town.  I hope I wake up before I get to work.

Once on the tube I spot a lad with a tattoo on his upper neck.  It is two letters but I can’t tell if it is “TU” or “JM”.  Surely shouldn’t the minimum requirement of such a gesture be that it is clear in execution?

Before long I find myself stepping out at St Johns Wood and walking towards the restaurant.  Somehow despite the hold up at Kelvedon this appears to be my earliest arrival into work yet.

This morning it feels as if it takes forever for The Girl and my boss to turn up.  And when The Girl finally arrives she royally is the walking dead.  This is a person that takes more time off work than any of my previous work colleagues or subordinates.  When I make comment that she needs to be wrapped up in cotton wool she always turns it back on me, claiming that I am the real hypochondriac.  My absence record is next to perfect so where on earth does she find the front to throw such accusations at me?  All in all though, today it is impressive that she has even made it in.  Are times and her attitude changing?

From here I finally put in the solid day’s work that I was needing to achieve/accomplish on Friday.  Better late than never I guess.

At some point we remember that there are still cupcakes remaining from yesterday when the angry boss bought them in after his wife baked them.  However when we look at the remaining two as predicted the berries have turned and sprouted furry fungus.  You half suspect legs will be next.  Subtly we throw them away.

With work busy at his end Racton emails and suggests that we meet up at Highbury for 7PM this evening for CALVIN JOHNSON meaning that when 5.30PM comes around I am not in a rush to leave.  As a result of this I find myself putting in a productive extra hour which lends me a great head start on tomorrow.

When I finally leave my boss is at the bar getting business drunk.  There is an invitation to join him but I don’t really have the time or inclination.  Shortly after exiting as I walk up Loudoun Road I receive a text from Racton alerting me to the fact that he has only just left his work also.

After changing lines at King Cross as I exit Highbury & Islington tube station there is a guy in front of me with a t-shirt that says “I’m fucking over it” on the back.  I guess it is good news to hear that this guy has recover (got over it) and come to terms with his condition but just what was the “it” I wonder.  If he has to use such an expletive it must have been a bad one.

From here I proceed to stand outside opposite the tube station waiting for Racton’s arrival.  People look weird tonight, not least the black guy in a yellow baseball cap creeping up behind me.  Was he a pickpocket?  Am I racist?  Is he a racist?

Soon it begins to rain and with no sign of Racton’s arrival I step back inside the station where I get in the way.  Not long afterwards he turns up thankfully.

With me think we were in a rush to get to Dalston he asks me if I have eaten, announcing that he himself is hungry.  I shrug, half happy either way but isn’t time of the essence?  Eventually we wind up in KFC where I order a Colonel’s Banquet.  It’s a pretty shitty banquet.  Over “dinner” we cover recent events and all sounds very messy.

Before long we find ourselves on a bus heading across North London towards Dalston.  Buses are no fun; I can tell you this from experience.  I grew up on the fuckers and I do not wish to grow down on them.  Quickly it becomes apparent that we are behind a couple of people headed to the show also (the flannel/plaid shirts and general aura/demeanour of sweet feebleness makes it a no-brainer).

We arrive at Dalston Trinity Centre Hall and it’s a shocker.  It’s like a fucking cub scout hall.  Hats off for the ingenuity of using this place but it just feels weird.  Almost immediately we spot CALVIN JOHNSON who is sat on a table at the back of the room selling CDs, vinyl and cassettes.  He truly is keeping it real.  And he still cuts quite an intimidating figure.

This place truly is a village hall.  Around us badly dressed hipsters with matching hairstyles sit on the floor with their legs crossed discussing their latest bands and cassette recordings (probably).  This now feels like a different generation to me, one I have outgrown which causes me to feel the need to become a wallflower.

Unsurprising with the minimal reality of such a venue comes the lack of a bar and immediately I can’t help but resent those around us better prepared with their “BYOB”.  Quite frankly I am gagging, spitting feathers and would happily offer these divs large money for a beverage.  At around this point Racton makes comment that I “look unimpressed” to which I shrug and deny the accusation.  I was trying to hide this externally.  As people continue to sit on the floor like flood victims the place begins to fill with more punters and suddenly this begins to feel like a hot ticket (on the lowest level).

ADAM GNADE opens sitting on the edge of the stage performing his songs acoustically without the requirement of electricity.  He does a kind of Woody Guthrie via Jim Carroll thing with a singing style that reminds me somewhat of Chris Leo with its stabbing delivery.  His songs are small narratives of modern life lived hard as he subtly grasps and clings to hope.  I immediately take to the guy; he is earnest and grounded in fashion that is not deplorable or forced.

During his set the hall further begins to fill meaning that the people sat on the floor suddenly need to stand up to make space and with this they all move towards the stage in what might be perceived in intimidating fashion.  With this vision approaching him upon seeing the minor surge GNADE lets off a joke scream mid song without missing a beat.

GNADE is good to the end.  His set does not outstay its welcome and neither does his personality.  At the same time I don’t think his spiel would work were he not American.

By the time CALVIN JOHNSON takes to the stage the room is full, rammed and sweltering hot.  Tonight he appears to be in a good mood as ordinarily CALVIN is considered something of a prickly customer and character (if stories from Nottingham are to be believed).  With no amplification he truly succeeds off the back of smart but basic songwriting and a genuinely unique singing voice and approach.

CALVIN JOHNSON is a raconteur of the highest degree.  You get the impression that when he wants to be he can be the most charming and charismatic person on the planet.  He walks around the stage playing and addressing the audience like the coolest supply teacher you ever had.

Pound for pound his between song banter equates to as much airtime as his actual material as it ranges from the misconception that pizza is not good rock food and how there are so many little white lies and unfulfilled tiny promises in music scenes.  He is not angry about this just amusingly resigned.

All in all it’s a strange show.  CALVIN JOHNSON doesn’t look like he has aged a day and neither does his audience who remain young with an appearance of the naïve and gullible.  These things are never going to change.

It all ends on a high as CALVIN knows he has come to town and exhilarated us, passed on some knowledge and sprinkled us with enjoyment thus enhancing our lives for one evening out of many.  Whether he still inspires people to pick up a guitar or start record labels is open to debate but it all remains a tangible process, his existence serves to remind that DIY can work and is successfully if only in an artistic sense.

With this Racton and I exit happy with our evening.  Soon we are heading in separate directions where at the Dalston bus stop I experience a true scare/fright when I think a blonde Bella is boarding the bus with me.  This girl looks so terrifyingly similar the person that once made my life hell.

From here the buss rolls down to Liverpool Street where it arrives around 10.45PM.  On the way to the train station I pop into the Bishopsgate Tesco where two cars full of police appear to have circled on a wasted middle class Peaches Geldof lookalike.  I’d fuck her.

Inside the shop I buy two bottles of Neuro Sonic as part of a twofer.  This is definitely a new level/hybrid of energy drink.  It literally glistens.

In the end I wind up on the 11PM train to Ipswich.  It is sparse and thus potentially pleasant.  Unfortunately not far into the journey it beaches at Stratford and never really recovers.  At first it appears to be to let a freight train pass through but then it turns out that it is due to an incident at Seven Kings.  As the bars on my iPhone begin to diminish naturally I experience battery angst.

As the train remains sat at Stratford around midnight a guy in a suit begins shouting for “free pies and coffee” as reparation for the hold up but when this does not come he resorts and moves onto shouting “c’mon lets get moving”.  Sadly National Express East Anglia do not necessarily listen to or respond to such requests.

Later it continues with “c’mon, any news?” as Information Jimmy remains silent, dead to the world much like the train.

Around 12.15AM I begin to smell burning as the train gets overrun by chav party types.  Suddenly I feel as if I am on the Fellini train from 8 ½.

When the time reaches 12.40AM I begin to wonder if I will ever escape this train.  I look around and play Eat, Marry Or Fuck.  It is at this moment the doors beep and thankfully the train begins pulling away.  For the win.

At this point the battery on my iPhone finally dies.  It all happens at once.

Eventually I get home just past 2AM.  On a school night.

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