I was going to write some puntastic eulogy about working at Sun for a million years but all I can think about is a pen
I lost in the Sale office in 1993. Goodbye then.
I sometimes write nonsense about things to try and sound clever
I was going to write some puntastic eulogy about working at Sun for a million years but all I can think about is a pen
I lost in the Sale office in 1993. Goodbye then.
you see now 5 years ago I thought it would all be alright but it seems it isn’t. if there was a sense that there was something to be optimistic about then it was entirely reasonable to be chirpy but 9 years of pointy stick avoidance makes jack a dull boy. its hot here, but then, you don’t know where I am.
just when you think life is complete, you get what you wish for which was to captured half naked in a bedroom window wearing a viking helmet. well, not quite what you wished for but notwithstanding the attire I do have the dubious ecstatic 5 minute thrill of finding myself on street view. I mean, its not like I’m doing anything particularly interesting or am in a particularly interesting location or that I’m even throwing up on a pavement or something. no. I’m in my office. looking at the computer I’m looking at right now, hunched over like some neaderthal. and I suspect I’m actually looking at my house on street view just as the street view black opel passed by. I didn’t even notice it. the viking helmet has finally gone back to the fancy dress shop.
but I wasn’t caught once. I was caught twice. in reality, the capture of me in my office is pretty unremarkable. you can walk past my house anytime monday to friday and see me there and take your own high resolution shot if you really want to. I’ll put the helmet on if you ask in advance. that shot must have been taken in the morning, because I’m pretty sure I went out that afternoon to do a bit of, um, ‘shopping’. honestly, after I’d had a look around the market and taken some pictures of some abandoned office blocks somewhere, I just happened to pop in to a shop that looked like it sold magazines and stuff. I thought I might pick up the evening news and check out some letters about war memorials and the number 21, but as it turned out, it sold rather different publications. honestly, I was just leaving.
I twittered a long time ago and then last year decided that I don’t and while I’m at it I don’t do those other things that make me sociable even though I spend all day in an office on my own mumbling about cheese and poking widgets with little pointy cocktail sticks and so had a very nice old-school 8 months of my life when I didn’t give a weasel’s chaf what coffee you made this morning and just did some work and sat in an office on my own mumbling about widgets and poking cheese with little pointy cocktail sticks. having de-invested and de-invented and then got right narked off with myself I took a little poke around the fringes of the social one-hand-claposphere to see whether anything had evolved from the ephemeral cup-a-soup and lo, it took about 7 minutes to re-register my entire bloody life away. the last twit I had anything to do with was a bloke pavement cycling into my bush but now there’s so much twit and can’t keep up with what was just twat. similarly, the last time my face was in a book it was about daguerreotyping but now I’m spending a fruitless and irrelevant half an hour trying to guess more cars that my dad owned than someone in berkshire that I’ve never met. if that’s not bad enough, I’m wasting valuable disk space, apparently, by even thinking about writing about it the useless dullard that I am. who’d have thought.
I have 17 friends in common.
on a evening full of strangeness I headed out to the Least Charitable Room in the Zafira and as there were some Mongolian nose flutes or something playing on Future Radio, I gave Zane Lowe a twiddle for the 5 minute drive, only to find that Mr Docherty was croaking all hopeful about Libertines reunions and playing in Norwich tonight, which, I thought, is where he should be right now which he probably was but nonetheless it was the first of many strange occurrences that would take place during the course of the evening. I’d failed in a number of previous attempts to pin down Sir Docherty, from the being a bit drunk on stage and having lots of fights period, through the being a bit out of it on stage and having lots of fights period, and the not being on stage at all when he should have been and he was having a fight somewhere else period, but since Mr Douchery has determined that he is now reincarnate as the thing he first thought of in 6th form, then its from that point we might evaluate tonight’s performance. in Grace/Wastelands, he’s made a record that meets that 6th form objective very neatly, so we should all give him the chance to show us his art in the way he would like us to experience it, before he degenerates much further and crosses that very thin line he treads between Peter Docherty and Shane McGowan.
when you turn up to a venue the size of the Lethergic Clapping Room you might expect to see a couple of 18-wheelers with enormous cables hanging out of them, full of upside-down crates with something like ‘bloc party’ stencilled, banksy-like, on the side and in your mind you’re already visualising a show of such epic grandieur that you suddenly need to go to the toilet. so when you actually trip round some dug-up concrete fountain in the misty half-light and catch sight of a transit van with something like ‘a1 rentals’ stencilled on the side with a couple of coat hangers where the aerial should be, you’re not quite filled with that same sense of awe. still, it is a solo acoustic show, for that is what it do say on the listings, so maybe in fact a transit van is overkill. notwithstanding this mental setback, I’m making way through the doors expecting that the room will be the living embodiment of a facebook page dedicated to underage girls who think kilimangiro is that hill what that Cheryl Cole sicked up on. I’m a bit disappointed when in actual fact the rather less than full room is more of a homburg and cardigan festival, although there does seem to be a healthy contingent of scary stoners, so there might be a good fight later, if nothing else. it does occur to me that there is something inherently wrong about 17 year olds dressed as Tony Hancock. strangely, the house lights are already down between supporting acts, which is either because it hides the empty spaces quite nicely, or because it really is too distressing to see what everybody looks like when you’re standing next to each other in a place like this, for which I’m rather grateful. and so is everybody else, probably. a cursory glance around at tonight’s hardware shop reaveals a curious demographic. not for this crowd the trusty motorola, nokia or sony ericsson. not even the jesus phone. no, tonight Matthew, we’re Jill Furmanovsky. look, we’ve all got our digital SLR cameras. look, there’s a canon 450. there’s a d50. don’t you people just come and watch any more?
once I’ve been to the bar and wandered around a bit, of the overheard conversations around me, the most discernable was that of a couple looking wistfully at the door, bemoaning that fact that, apparently, he doesn’t come on until 9:15. which is, like, ages away. mostly the other conversations went something like ‘OI OI! PEEETAH! CAAHM ON SAAHN!’ and were accompanied by much large bloke posturing which was good natured in a fearing for your safety kind of way. in fact, as 9 o’clock approached, there was a strange violent tension building and at 8:52, we applaud the first beer lob. I suspect it won’t be the last. as another expensive camera that my dad got me fires off another flash bulb at the back of another person’s head, there’s a flurry of excitement and the sound of one hand clapping. there he is. hang on, no he isn’t. who’s that then? I don’t know. I think they’re his mates or something.
I tell myself that if I was at the arts centre on a thursday evening watching these three perform their alt.country.uk.banjo licks then I might quite like it, but I’m not, and I don’t. the couple stood directly in front of me start extracting each other’s teeth with their tongues and that annoying thing happens when you suddenly become a thoroughfare with an invisible drink in your hand. I think the last time I saw a banjo at the Lacklustre Country Room was at Gogol Bordello, but now, people are wondering if they’ve somehow stumbled into a fairy tent at the cambridge folk festival, but one full of agitated boors. by song 8 we’ve stopped pretending to clap. not even a spirited rendition of teardrop can disguise the fact that we’d quite like them to leave. so they do.
in another strange but subtle shift of mood, people are suddenly taking photos of themselves with their best gurning faces and there’s even a jovial half-baked slow hand clap being passed around like left-over celery. another overheard conversation goes something like ‘trouble is, first day of tour, been in Norwich all day, gets back here, nothing to do, jacks up and gets out of it’, which is plainly totally inaccurate. there’s plenty to do here. we’re starting to think the whole evening might be another no-show and the agitation creeps back in, making a fight seem the most likely significant occurrrence in the next few minutes, which might at least be midly entertaining in an I couldn’t possibly condone it kind of way. but then, just as you’re looking at the football scores on your phone, there he is.
Mr Doubtfire ambles on stage looking just like he’s already played for an hour in another room in some parallel universe next door and there’s nothing short of rapture as he launches straight into some song or other. the collective shrieky OMGOMG is almost palpable and overwhelms you for a few seconds, and in that short ecstatic period I’m led to think that right now he is a most curious mix of Bob Dylan and Rodney Bewes. after just a couple of craftily selected singalongs from the back catalogue there’s really no stopping him. anyone who had turned up having listed to Grace/Wastelands on repeat on Napster expecting him to be sitting Val Doonican style on a bar stool and just running through the new tracks really wasted an afternoon. not that I did that. there’s a healthy plundering of all that was and is great about the Libertines, Babyshambles and the erstwhile Peter himself, threaded randomly and with apprent ease throughout the set, for which everyone is spectacularly grateful. the performance effortlessly captivates what might as well be some north London bedroom packed with 1000 mates from down the pub, but there’s a nagging feeling that you’re witnessing the last and brightest of a light that will surely, sometime soon, go out. at one point during a sprited rendition of something or other, it feels eerily like being at Woodstock.
and then we get a bit bored. just like that. even our Peter looks somehow suddenly unclear as to what is actually going on. and he’s halfway through it. ‘you better be liking this’ he tells us, as if to remind us that actually, he’s baring his soul, thank you. so he throws himsef with much gusto into Kilimangiro and, for good measure, gives us Don’t Look Back into the Sun, after which there’s really no reason to doubt that to the people who paid to be here, he is actually the way, the truth and the light. at least, he’s done enough of this to know what makes a great show. the stoners go ape-like mental. there’s a fully-whipped frenzy. so Peter sits down for a bit. on the Val Doonican bar stool. but let this not sound the alarm bells of whimsy. he gets up again and gives us a splendid ham-fisted version of the Specials’ Gangsters. all together now. a fat drunk bloke looks at his watch and then looks at me. oh dear. not drunk. funny how people can take a dislike to you just for being taller than they are.
not even the appearance on stage of guests-that-aren’t-graham-coxon and a banjo reprise can detract from the delightful shenanigans that continued for the next hour or so. as we reached, passed, and waved our private parts in the face of the decibel meter hour, there seemed no end to the spontaneous outpourings of Pete and even though there were more false endings than the 17th series of Lost we mostly stuck with it, even though some people really had to get their last bus, like, you know, even though he was doing that song about Kate Moss what I do love. by the strange anticlimactic conclusion to the performance, he really didn’t care what was going on and were it not for the fact that he would have probably collapsed, would, I’m sure, have continued into the small hours, as if it were some kind of lock-in.
it was a glorious shambles.
I wouldn’t expect to levitate over a teacake but inbound your slide this way and if I untangle the subtabs from the weasel trench I might just be able to blog the 19 minutes you have remaining with a random browse prolapse executing a triple link manifest when I don’t even understand the cross-marketing opportunity of fish and chips
I don’t even know where you are even though I see you sliding down a mountain with high brow cleft lip tab manifold as the calendar of doom blarts anachronisms at the trenchant featureless blip of orange footwells. lest you imagine there is a point to it and that I’ve just popped over the parapet only to find that my hat was so last year I remember a time where hair was obligatory and feet were under the table but we all had fun partying like it was 1999 which it was then and really it wasn’t. if I may, I’ll go back to the start. the way it is now is all crooked and that spot on my nose doesn’t have an appropriate sample target and it’s all square today even though it wasn’t even yesterday.
you’re not listening are you.
in 2000ish somebody stole a plastic cd wallet off my desk at work in the watchmoor park mark 2 office on the 1st floor which I blamed on the cleaners but could have anybody inside which were about 8 cds which I never replaced and I mainly can’t remember what they were expect for 2. first of those was ok computer and even though I played that fairly regularly at the time I haven’t owned it or played it since yes that’s over 8 years without ok computer what am I thinking but oh travesty I last month bought it again when it was available for 3 quid on mp3 download from amazon which means I now own it again but of course I can’t spend hours in the dark with a torch looking at the cover notes pontificating on the meaning of the meandering scribbles of thom yorke which in the end only really mean hahahahahahaha I’m a twitchy artist but I did get karma police on shuffle on my walkman as I made myself a nice cup of coffee this morning before I get down to some specifications and I was of course drearily signing along to myself alone in the house wandering around like a loon when it occurred to me that you don’t really need a great imagination to work out everything about me by making rash generalisations about what you might already have gathered about me then working backwards so I’ll save you the bother not that you were by spelling out just how normal I am and how much you could just guess by the fact that I’m even writing this with my headphones on in my home office in the south-east of england actually east anglia but you don’t know where that is.
41 designer IT online blog twitter radiohead photography middle-class mortgage 4 bedrooms 3 children 2 holidays 1 car not fit not unfit thinning busy weekends not much telly jeans home office timezones google music gigs direct debits domain school run graphics card art middle age tescos waitrose uncertain fleece laptop desktop self assessment 1980s smug english lazy should go out more like a pig in a cage on antibiotics etc.
the other one was faith hill. oops
why’s there a line through that week when it only starts on monday and goes through to thursday really am I to expect that another collective wik will be dumped on the unsuspecting lead roofs of midland ferries while I trundle a 3-wheeled embarrassment of a slide projector into the calamity of 101 and mumble something about tractors on the 140 before you can say text variable widget parameter and I’ve generated a lonesome withering dolt of an oaf that dribbles back and forth across the very fabric of time until I lurch to a halt by the newsagent and get funnelled into the paygate like I’m expected to sit with a monkey for the next 4 hours, whooping about his virtual desktop. if they paid you to do it you’d never be as good as you are but there’ll always be someone for whom the bell that tolls of trolls will never be loud enough.
nefarious market voles might take umbrage at the continual misery of 10 o’clock tolling whence the straight fringe of white city pouts the graphs of apocalypse while my grapes get warm in the hands of a clot but since when a darkness befell the lcd of hades and twas finally secured the relief of the fallen-headed doubter of the endless journey that the miracle of beginning came upon the limp fetid balloon of the first phase of part 2. it’ll not be finished by then, marking my words with a pencil. but you never said we would get to the end only that we’d get past the beginning which is where I plan to have been. enough said about the labours of wordsmiths and the interactions of the half-willed suffice to say I’ll have a 17 plus please mate and where’s he gone now I need to get this flaming thing done today.
you can’t get the staff.
not for us right now the inconsequential away message that I couldn’t be bothered to edit don’t know how anyway lots away right now must be a public holiday but there is a nice collection of retorts in my buddy list not buddies of course but people I work with and have often never met suffice to say today we have ‘in the hot tub’ and ‘writing book’ as the pick of the crowd amongst the desks and computers that variously people are choosing to be away from nevertheless I shall of course attempt to take it to at least floor D by way of my occasionals and forthwith will not be able to respond to your salacious query regarding my availability other than to inform you that I’m tripping over a sponge.
you’ll need at least to get away for one of those days lest the creeping inertia drags you to the john bonham underworld where a 15 year old from Penge will mash your credentials into a handbag of doom and wrest the navigation from your grasp such that even match of the day on iplayer won’t rescue your miserable soul scraping as it is along the pavement of trolls where your knuckles should be. its not as if anyone is really there anyway. I, for one, am in a steam bath in harrogate getting my legs bent backwards by an inclement wisp of a boy while michael hestletine bewitches a whoop of struts with his never-ending stories of the curious other world outside your own. and I won’t even twit it. finishing with a rousing triple full stop belying some assumed continuation, I’m away with the project fairies for another dose of hours…
I mean I had forgotten its january until neal reminded me but then if you spend 17 hours in a box with a tripod and a dial-in then there’s every chance you’ll wake up in doctor who like a martin clunes cabbage head and be expected to strategize your way out of a cardboard wiki. there’s been many times when you could have so easily have just slipped out to the decking and given your last crisps to the dalliance in the video conference room but as the cat strings of vicarious premiums get dragged across the floor of fire exit tunnels you creep ever closer to being the last bounty in the box. if there’s only one flavour it means I don’t like it. not like ski yogurts used to be in those little milk churns or your first plate of spaghetti but the consuming arpeggi of doubt that cankers over the frozen ocean and nibbles the life from your broadbanded life support system without that you really don’t exist and its full of antelopes of horses in here. can’t even uncrack the box tops whence I’d supplant nature with a feeble incantation of weekly meetings designed specifically to undermine the public confidence. when you hit the bottom you’ll have a penchant for autobiography but naturally it will be cack-handed diatribes fit for soup but hold fast on that idea if only as a illustration of the possibilities after the death of it all. you’re nearly as old now as I will be at the end. but I’ll have a spreadsheet with my actions in yellow whereas yours are all overdue in red. I might even yank it back on topic but I’ve seen worse things happen in the seafood aisle.
don’t want to be afraid but when its so far away you poke the embers of winter and you’ve only got february to look forward to. you’ll need 60 days before that happens and you nearly had it there. look in the box.