Wednesday, October 06, 2010

Wednesday 6 October 2010


Wednesday 6 October 2010

I didn’t think the mornings got as dark as this.

Things eventually get rolling as I find myself being disheartened by the manner in which X-Factor is yet again the number one news story.  Its like the government is employing Simon Cowell as some kind of Paul McKenna figure to hypnotise the nation into some kind of indolent slumber.

I exit into drizzle.  As I pass my neighbours door there are two pairs of trainers still sat outside.  Did they have a threesome last night?  As I step into the outside world I spot the Scottish lady downstairs through her window at her dresser brushing her hair.  It’s her birthday today and on Sunday she half asked me for a present to be placed on her car windscreen this morning.  Yet another request I fail to come through on.

The drive to the station is eventless.  Towards the end a moped gets in my way but what’s new there?

Without drama I hop aboard the 6.59AM as eventually some old bag plate crowder squeezes in next to me at Ingatestone (always at Ingatestone).  As a result of this once more it comes with relief to arrive into London.

The journey across town is a quiet one.  When I change at Baker Street onto the Jubilee Line I spot the French Looking Lady who today has her hair down, which looks crazy and super attractive.

As I arrive into work the window cleaner is doing his monthly thing and the good conversation that comes with that.

The Girl returns today, returning in a good mood as her Ugg boots await.  Myself, after the quiet of yesterday I am truly flying.  That said I am also feeling on the verge of turning ill, potentially catching one of the several bugs that appear to be doing the rounds currently.

Early into proceedings I receive an email from Holland Park to tell me that she is free to meet up tomorrow night.  I guess it is on.

Before long we arrive at lunchtime where I have some of the same old same old.  Welcome back to the routine.

From here the afternoon rolls out successfully as I accomplish more work ensuring that I remain ahead of the game with regards to deadlines and pressure.

Eventually 5.30PM comes around and with it my latest visit to the Bloomsbury Theatre where this evening I am heading to see JAMES ELLROY do a book event in support of his new work The Hilliker Curse.  Here’s hoping the evening does not go the same way as last year.

Beforehand with time to spare I head down to Fopp with view to getting the new version of Hype! on DVD (this edition boasts an interview with Peter Bagge amongst the extras).  As I exit the tube at Tottenham Court Road and head down towards Covent Garden I pop into TK Maxx (formerly the big Borders) with view to finding a new coat for winter.  Upon entering the shop I am immediately not in the mood to deal with this store, there are too many mirrors on show letting me down in depressing fashion.

From here I head predictably to the more comfortable confines of Fopp where I eventually make out like a bandit snagging five CDs and two books for £20.

By this point time is pressing so quickly I head straight towards Bloomsbury where I get slightly lost in search of the Bloomsbury Theatre itself.  In the end I find myself walking through the ULU campus where optimistic new students appear to be giving the place something of a buzz.  This is something I will forever regret losing/missing out on, I really wish I had done university.  In my next life I hope to come from a better social demographic.

Finally I find Gordon Street and the Bloomsbury Theatre where I quickly snap up my ticket from the makeshift box office (which is basically a shed painted white).  Having not had dinner or a drink I hit the canteen where I discover a goldmine of Chinese drinks and treats.  The Chinese are so forward when it comes to bottled teas.  As I grab a bottle I grab a little bit of win.

With the hour nearing stage time I take my seat where I have lucked out and snagged a really good spot.  As people slowly/gradually filter in I find myself surrounded by females.  I never had JAMES ELLROY down as being such a ladies writer, ladies man.

Eventually JAMES ELLROY takes to the stage in his usual strident and intense fashion.  He acts like he could kick your arse but to be honest I’m not so sure that he could actually be able to pull it off, he is very much a man of front.  He needs no introduction.

On cue he takes to the podium/lectern and sets out his stall in the customary style addressing his audience as all the usual P words (“good evening peepers, prowlers, pederasts, panty-sniffers, punks and pimps”). I wish I possessed his confidence and ego, you can’t help but feel he would be a success in any field he so desired.

He begins by saying that tonight he is doing three readings from his new book The Hilliker Curse but where one ends and another begins is not clear.  Basically it does not sound good.

Soon his reading is done and he sits down for conversation with some guy (Chris Moss) from Time Out magazine who possesses an ailing microphone.  As ever ELLROY is tenacious and full of himself, which you suspect is one of his favourite subjects.

Repeating some of the information/insight from his talk last year, once again he denies to being online, to reading newspapers, to watching television or basically anything modern that the proles invest so highly in these days.  He wants to be (and is) better than that.  He states how he loves all form of language including slang, jive and even racist terminology.  In other words anything against type.  With this enthusiasm he appears to have tapped into the vibrancy of it all and acknowledges the necessity in it and the association and levelling identity that it brings.  This is perhaps where his work has most strength, in it’s ability to sound genuine and accessible.

Moving on he appears to be a man once more in love and with it harbouring potential plans to move to London.  He expresses his appreciation for our literate reputation by admirably stating “you people here will spend your last twenty quid on a copy of my book….they don’t do that in America”.  Strangely and annoyingly at this point the interviewer asks “will you be writing a book set in England?”  The obvious response from ELLROY is “no”.

When he eventually gets onto the subject of Barack Obama he comments how he and Obama are hand in hand in pulling the wool over the eyes of everybody.  He’s so full of shit; his is a tough sense and style of humour to get with.  Later when comparing himself to Bush he claims to be a genius in comparison but at least he wasn’t running the world (or something to that extent, he has jive and I don’t).

Towards the end he reveals that he has just decided to write a new trilogy revisiting his most famous characters (the ones from LA Confidential) with the series beginning on the day of the Pearl Harbor attack.  In his way he suggests that it will blow our minds.

Eventually the questioning gets thrown out to the audience and quickly a real clunker arrives when some idiot compares the murder of ELLROY’s mother as serving as some kind of similar inspiration to his writing as William Burroughs’ shooting and killing (murdering) his wife.  What fucking planet is this guy from?  At this point without missing a beat ELLROY declares that he “hates William Burroughs.  I hate Hunter S. Thompson.  I hate Charles Bukowski” at which point the idiot not finished adds “what about Henry Miller?” to which ELLROY responds “I have not read Miller” before saying “no” to the original question.  Ultimately ELLROY is a square.  He barks like the father of your friend that does not like you.

Happily beyond this the questions are passable but disposable and eventually the night comes to a close as ELLROY gears up to do a book signing.  After my bad experience at the event last year I shy away from repeating the experience.

From here I bounce out of the theatre and into Bloomsbury where the new and fresh students are lining the streets drinking as they welcome themselves to education in central London.  Those fuckers do not know they are born.

Swiftly I hop aboard the tube at Euston Square where it goes across to Liverpool Street and I enjoy a relatively early night once I get home to Colchester.



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