Thursday, January 31, 2008

I went to the doctor and guess what he told me, guess what he told me

Thursday, January 31, 2008 10
Not since my third ever post has Data gone quite as fucking all out mental, Rain Man getting on a non-Qantas plane, bat-shit crazy as she did yesterday.

If you are clueless as to who Data and indeed Riker might be, have a quick read of that post. It's short, honest.

You back? How was that? I'm fucking great, amn't I? No wonder I'm up for Best Blog. Along with every other cunt in the universe.

Let me be clear. On this occasion, Data had not recently absorbed her own bodyweight in sugar. She slept just fine the night before. I hadn't been dissing Dora or bashing Barney. Her mood was middling to fair. Can't say better than that.

Riker's dental hygienist appointment started, shockingly, on time. Common Law had been informed of this appointment over the telephone, it was to be free, and to take place in the North Strand Health Centre which I had assumed was going to be reminiscent of Danny's flat in Trainspotting but turned out to be clean and friendly and apparently junkie free. Riker jumped in the chair and opened wide.

Data sat on my lap, and briefly paid attention to the story I had brought along to distract from any drilling plans she might have been formulating. As it was, she couldn't take her eyes away from the procedure proceeding in front of her.

To be honest, I thought she was fucking terrified. The look on her face certainly appeared to be one of, at minimum, trepidation. I kept banging out the Barbie and her wheelchair bound friend play basketball book, safe in the knowledge that, on this occasion at least, I wouldn't have to force her into the chair and hold her down while she attempted to scratch out the eyes of both the hygienist and her lovely assistant.

Ha! Ahahaha!

So Riker is finished. Bottom teeth sealed, all polished up, sparkle, sparkle. She gets out of the chair, I gather up the travelling with children detritus, hand out the thank yous and start to move out of the room.

It's a slow burner this one.

'Is my go?'

'Pardon, Data?' We're just about out the door.

Rising pitch: 'Is my go?'

I do my fatherly chuckle, I grin at the lovely assistant. 'No, sweetie, it was just for Riker today.'

That was the end of the slow burning. The fuse has fizzed to the end. Fucking kaboom.

Tears are streaming, yes. This is genuine grief, folks, real anguish. But the noise. Oh my good fucking Christ, the noise. Everyone in the building is now making the not unreasonable assumption that some drunken HSE executive has decided that in order to finance his bonus, root canal work on children will now be done without anaesthetic.

We're all the way back to the waiting room, where we find ourselves in front of millions of parents and children from Riker's school, all scheduled for the same day, all wondering why I have chosen a public place in which to beat up my youngest child.

Lovely assistant has chased us down.

'Does she want to sit in the chair?'

Yes, lovely assistant, she sure does.

And so we go back, Data gets to sit in the chair, wear the shades and even have her teeth polished.

'She's very good,' says the High Genie. 'What age is she?'


'Oh, my three year old would never sit still like this for me.'

'Oh yeah, she's a fucking angel. You can tell from the way that the concept of her sister getting anything at all that she doesn't get causes her to have a complete emotional breakdown.'

I didn't say that.

Later we waltzed to 'Nothing Compares 2 U', because it was on and because we like to waltz, me and Data. With feeling I sang to her, 'I know that living with you baby is sometimes hard..'

At least she's stopped crapping in her pants.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Naked to see, walking on air

Tuesday, January 29, 2008 16
I want it.

Why do you want it?

It validates me.

You don't need validation.

Of course I need fucking validation. Are you kidding me?

Well, I don't think you need validation. You like doing it, right?

No. It's a pain in the tits. Almost always it's a pain in the tits.


Though, yes, sometimes it's good. When I'm really fucking pissed off about something. Or upset about something.

Or nervous about something.

Ha, yes, very good...

You're always pissed off anyway.


So you must like doing it more often than not, if you only like doing it when you're pissed off.

I said really pissed off. I'm not always really pissed off.

Right, fine.

I'm not.

I know you're not.




So you want the validation?

I think I said 'need'.

So you need the validation?


Anything else?

Like what?

I don't know, the hits.

Oh, for fuck's sake. The hits are validation. A search for 'mare fucking' is validation.

A search for 'mare fucking is not validation.

I know what I'm validated by.


You can't publish this, you know that?

Why can't I?

Oh Jesus, let me count the ways, the fucking whys...


It's completely pathetic for an a.

How? How is it pathetic?

Well, it's just not cool to care about this kind of thing. It's just not cool. Only crazy people obsess about stuff like this. Anybody with an ounce of dignity just wouldn't care. Or they would seriously care but would just chooose not to shout the fact out to the whole world. Christ.

Fuck that, I'm publishing it.

You're a muppet.

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Sont les mots qui vont très bien ensemble

Sunday, January 27, 2008 6
Common Law is back playing for Ireland. Did you know? Did that news break on the sphere of the bleugh? And what does this mean to you, to me?

To you, it means that your evening of safe, smug, middle class entertainment, that whole makes you laugh, makes you cry, makes you think thang, that bad boy is going to be running a whole lot more smoothly than it has done for the last nine months or so. You may think you can't see the difference but let me guarantee you, folks, that those acting units, those fucked up, self absorbed little babies that you have forked out your hard-earned dosh to watch are more relaxed and therefore more competent when it comes to the old moving and talking at the same time gig. They know that if their arms were to burst (a standard thespian nightmare) Common Law is on hand to make it all better. And thus they are calmer, and just plain better at plying their pointless trade.

And what does it mean to me? It means a childcare crisis, and some hardcore time management. To this end we have hired a babysitter to cover the hour on Monday and Thursday evenings when I'm on my way to work and Common Law is on her way home. Fuck knows what we're going to do when the show goes up.

But to the babysitter. Her name is Michelle and she's lovely. She brought white chocolate Buttons on her first visit and instantly won over both my little nightmares darlings. We met her father and little brother on this first meeting and perfectly charming they were too.

Too perfectly charming. Too charmingly perfect.

Too charming. Too perfect.

I am now genuinely concerned that Michelle is the outrider for a sinister cult of perfection and charm, a messenger of sanctimoniousness who intends turning my monsters into slack-jawed angels of achievement who will, sooner rather than later, take a stand against my inadequacies as a father and indeed the whole concept of my being an almost full time unit of parentage.

'Traditional values!' they will shriek at me. 'Go to work you fat lazy sod! Earn a crust! Be a man! And Mother, yes you, Mother! Get in the kitchen and make us some pie! This constant diet of paternal pasta and pittas bores us! Pie, Mother! Mother pie! Now!'

I really don't know why I believe this will be the inevitable consequence of our hiring a babysitter for two hours a week, but folks, believe it I do.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Stop making the eyes at me

Friday, January 25, 2008 14
Flattery's funny, huh? Weird funny, I mean. Not funny like Eddie Izzard used to be or even funny like someone getting shot coming out of a gym that directly competes with the one in which I work, but funny fucking weird.

Flattery makes me feel good, it spruces up my day no end. I fucking love it when people tell me how great I am, how fit I am (in the new 'hot' sense), how funny I am, how fit I am (in the old able to do lots of stupid physical stuff sense). Fit, funny and fit, that's you Gimme, they say.

And what the fuck is so funny about that? Here's what: I don't care if they mean it or not. Or certainly my happy chemical producing bits and bobs don't. Really. They couldn't give a rat's ass. If they hear something nice about their host body (that's me, in case my dense Proustian prose has gotten you all confused) they get all chirpy and energised and start pumping out the good stuff. Even as my bitter, cynical mind attempts to fight back with a 'This cunt wants something, you're going to end up doing something you really fucking regret. Caveat emptor, motherfucker!' it finds itself succumbing to the wave upon wave of serotonin produced by even the most throwaway shit-eating grin accompanied 'Lookin' good, Gimme!'

In essence I believe every compliment sent my way to be a disgusting filthy untruth, and yet every single one makes me a little happier. Lies may make Baby Jesus cry, but they make Gimme sing. A singing, soaring compliant half-wit is what they make me.

But strangely I am completely unable to give out compliments myself. I grew up using the Holden Caulfield defense, that is, if any cunt didn't like me or in fact, didn't want to be my best friend ever in the whole wide world then that meant they were a goddamn prince, a phoney. This ended up being just about everyone for a long, long time, particularly as I waded through the vat of insincerity that is the acting profession.

And now I constantly scan for this twofacedness in myself lest I become all that I feel I should hate. I have no doubt this constant self-censure, this crushing self-census taking, is making me more of a phoney than even the phoniest phoney. My hatred of hypocrites hones my own razor sharp hypocrisy to fine and soul slicing edge. Score!

Here's what you need to take from this, folks, here's the only paragraph to which you need pay any serious attention:

If I come up to you at the blog awards, or even, god forbid, the street, and say 'You have great tits.' or 'You're not nearly as fat as I thought you would be.' or even just 'Lookin' good!', take it to heart. I have spent long minutes searching my feelings to make sure that I truly believe what I say. You do have great tits, you are not nearly as fat as I thought you would be, you are looking good.

Return the compliment, perhaps expand a little, and I'll be buying you drinks all night.

Tell me mother I'm still insane, cause of the dirt I has inhaled

How trivial my rage, how mundane my moanings. It's the fucking corpo under the microscope again, folks (some retirement that), under the knife.

Whatever the corpo is or means. The cunts concerned, the unconcerned cunts in question, are whoever is in charge of the bins. The black bins, the green bins, and now the fucking brown bins.

I have written on the green bins before. That's quite a good post too, but because it's not called 'Sandra Bullock's tits' or 'All the weird-ass shit into which so very many fucked up people wish to insert their weiners', nobody reads it. C'est la motherfucking vie, I suppose. Assuming you're not following the link, and why would you, here's the gist: I don't believe them. I think they're tossing it all in the landfill.

And now we have a brown bin, for organic waste. We get a scrap of paper in the door two days before it arrives, telling us that it's going to arrive. A scrap of paper that I get to throw in the green bin, a scrap of paper that contains an email address for 'questions and concerns'. I take a note of the email address. I throw out the paper scrap. And I mail the fuckers.

Here is the text of said mail:

Dear Cunty Bollox,

The fuck do I want with an organic waste bin? I fucking compost, dickwad! Like every other cunt with an ounce of sense and an inch of fucking garden space. Get with the fucking programme!

By all means send these shit-brown receptacles to the concreted ghettos and the high-rise slums, where the concept of compost is purely conceptual. But do you know where I live? Don't fucking lie to me, you do. I know you know, because you sent me a scrap of paper for my green bin, remember?

Think about where that is, think about my address for a moment, will you? Got it? Yes, that's fucking right. It's the address with the chip-laden shoulders, the Northside suburb that desperately wants to be on the Southside.

Now ask yourselves douchebag, what class of a person is even more likely to compost than a tank-driving offsetting arsehole Southsider? That's right, dumbass. A slightly cheaper tank-driving offsetting arsehole wannabe-Southsider Northsider. We have the gardens, we have the guilt, we've been composting since nineteen ought six.

And so to surmise, fuck off, I'm not going to pay for something I don't want or intend to use,

Fuck off again and best wishes,

Gimme A. Minute.

That's not really what I sent, as in reality I am pussycat through and through.

Here's the real one:

Hi there,

We compost all our organic waste. Are we obliged to have an unused brown bin sitting outside our house?

Thanks for your help,

Gimme A. Minute

As I may have mentioned before, I fucking sicken myself with my timidity and general lack of being a tough guy. But here's the thing, folks (I can have like, two per post right? Just two, I promise), the arrogant, useless fucks haven't even gotten back to me. No response in my mail box, not so much as an automated 'Thanks for being a contacting cock, nobody with a functioning conciousness will be answering your query.'

I could refuse to pay the charge, I suppose. But Common Law refuses to let me refuse to pay stuff, even if it's related to refuse.

Or I could send that first, more pointed mail. See if that elicits a response.

I think it's the way to go.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

All those stars drip down like butter

Wednesday, January 23, 2008 18
Top Five reasons to avoid comparing the death of Heath Ledger to that of River Phoenix.

1) I never saw any films with Heath Ledger in them. Not a one. Because outside of Bareback Mountain, to which I will get around eventually, why would I want to? A Knight's Tale? Are you having a larf? It's hardly My Own Private Idaho now, is it?

2) Although I am clearly not qualified to make this judgement I'll just go ahead and make it anyway. While Mr. Ledger may have been a reasonably inoffensive almost A lister, Mr. Phoenix was an undoubted genius with an inestimable gift comparable to that of Brando, Depp or Bale. I believed every word. I believe Heath Ledger had the correct movie star proportions (short, yes, 6'1" is short to me, I am very, very tall, plus massive fucking head) and was blessed with the ability to talk and move at the same time. I speak from experience when I say that this is not a talent shared by the entire acting community.

3) Ledger was bald. Or at least balding. Virile, perhaps. The epotimy of all that I wanted to be as a fourteen year old? Not so much.

4) He had a young daughter. This is something of clincher, friends. As far as I'm concerned the childless have every right to put whatever drugs they want into their systems, take themselves close to the edge and back and if occasionally they miss that marker and suck soil then while it is sometimes tragic and super, super tough on friends, family and parents, it does not compare in my mind to the reckless abandonment of a child. Suicide, if that's what it was, is a selfish act and while I was happy to give it a bash in my teens, as a father it would be a brutal punch in the faces of my girls.

Gimme doesn't punch his girls in the face and every fucker needs to live up to his standards.

5) It is inarguable, don't be even trying to argue this one with me mofos, that it is approximately infinity times cooler to die outside a Johnny Depp owned night club called The Viper Room than in your own apartment waiting for a fucking masseuse.

Monday, January 21, 2008

Your mama say you shouldn't play with me

Monday, January 21, 2008 17
I hate to be late but late it is that I am with my Kevin Keegan hate. Hate it is that I have for that permed ponce and his pathetic attempt at personability.

Folks, I support nobody in the Premiership. ‘The Premiership? The fuck is that?’ some of you may ask. Time to move on now, ignorant hockey watching Americans. Here’s a heads up: Any kind of hockey is strictly for the ladies. If ice hockey was really for men they wouldn’t be wearing all that fucking padding. Like football (proper football folks, not the one that rarely involves the coming together of foot and ball) hockey is essentially a non-contact sport and if you can’t take a little bit of shoulder to shoulder pushykins without encasing your body in a sofa’s worth of bubble wrap then perhaps you ought to take up croquet.

But back to the beautiful game. As I say, I support nobody in the Premiership. I used to support Manchester United but I stopped after I received an extremely personal affront from both Roy Keane and Alex Ferguson. (Who? Seriously. Fuck off. Watch the namby pamby jolly hockey sticks, this post is not for you.) I won't go into details but this betrayal, this way post-Saipan emotional studs to the Achilles tendon, (What? Where? For the last time, would you mind leeeaaving the bleugh) left me rudderless and almost completely disinterested in football.

It did not take me long to rediscover my interest, however. It is, after all, the beautiful game. And there are always internationals where I am happy to support my own country or Italy or Germany out of badness, or even, if any male Canuck over the age of six were to play the game, Canada. But my true love for this game of beauty expresses itself through hate.

I fucking hate Liverpool. I despise Middlesborough. Chelsea make me want to fucking vomit. My loathing of Sunderland is both newfound and terrifically intense. And now I get to add their chirpy cheeky chappy neighbours from Newcastle to the list. Keegan is a cunting penis who couldn't run an orgy at Premiership Christmas party let alone a fucking team. I like a bit of gorm, mooks, and there is no one on this great green Gaia more gormless than that tossled tosspot.

I have no problem with tears, emerge as they might from man or woman under stress, bereaved or beavered, but crying on Sky television because some meanie said that another team might not try hard against your team is just completely unacceptable. It embarrasses Gimme and Gimme will not stand to be embarrassed. And so I hated the fucker back then. But given that he ran off to join the circus after his last half-assed attempt at football management, (he really did muthafuckas, I wouldn't lie to you) I felt sure that I had seen the last of this particular Bozo.

The idea that the Newcastle fans are welcoming Mr Turgid Turd back with open arms fills me with nothing but scorn for them, their odious excuse for a striker, (has that little midget even scored since that over-rated jog past a lacklustre Argentinian defense?) and yes, their cretinous crybaby of a manager. Anyone with a quarter of a cornea can see that this prat is going to fuck it up big time, and I for one look forward to the show.

We need five relegation spots, is what we need.

Can I have my best sporting blog award now?

Yeah, no, I didn't think so.

In that case I'll have a rum and coca-cola

This post has but one fucking point, people. Dudes, check out the singularity of purpose.

It's the absence of the homespun nomenclature, homies, the lack of the f word, the dearth of the ironic Bushism. I recently noticed Barrack belting out the titular bad boy in question, yo, and I don't think he was doing the irony thing even one little bit. So perhaps it's time to just knock the motherfucker on the head altogether.

But what could I possibly address you in its stead? 'It' being that f word, that forbidden focal fruit. So far, you will have noticed, I've tried 'people' (too inclusive), 'dudes' (too masculine), homies (too honky trying to be down with the, well, homies) and the new genderless pronoun 'yo' (too confusing considering the number of yo-yo related posts that I intend producing over the coming weeks).

How about 'cunts'? Yeah, it's good but it just seems a little aggressive or something. Or how about I stop with the addressing altogether, clean up the fucking prose and write like a real person instead of constantly utilizing the vocative case to reassure myself that I do actually have a fucking reader or two.

How the fuck about that?

Sunday, January 20, 2008

They scream your name at night in the street

Sunday, January 20, 2008 13
Oh for fuck's sake. I said it was going to happen and now it's gone and fucking happened. I predicted it, yes, but my tongue was firmly in my cheek at the time and my middle finger was firmly raised at the prediction itself.

I crossed my motoring Rubicon at 7.30 this evening when I drove 500m to the local shop. Although I'm ecologically fucking miles ahead of you normal fuckers who started driving at nineteen or whatever, I am now officially part of the problem. I am that fat lazy fucker who drives when, taking into account the inevitable stop at the single set of lights, the whole parking gig, the turning shit off, getting in and out, locking the car crap, it would take about the same amount of time to walk and be approximately a zillion times quicker to bike.

Excuses, I have two. Numero Uno. I need the practise. I can drive now, yeah. No doubt about that. Over the last week or so, driving has moved from being something that chills me to my very bones, which leaves me shaken and shaking, that inspires child crushing dreams, to something that I am shit at but quite enjoy like dancing or writing. But fuck knows I need all the light trafficked time on the road I can get. Still, shitty excuse, right?

Excuso Dos. It was pissing down. Raining rain. Doing that Irish autumn, winter, spring, summer special. And there's the fucking point folks, and the pointlessness of that excuse. It's always pissing down, and I bike down to the shop always. Do I die because it's raining? I do not. Do I get so wet that I become incredibly uncomfortable and have to change my clothes? No I do not, as it takes about 90 seconds to get down there and about 100 to get back. And yet I took the car because I need the practise and because it was raining. I hate me.

I hate me, but I am completely dry.

Folks, you'll be glad to hear that I have a solution. And this is a solution to many problems. The driving cause it's raining one but also the driving when we don't need to issue, and get this, the whole crashing thing too.


Rip the fucking roofs right off all the cars. Even out the odds, level out the playing field. If you have to dry off the seats every time you take the kids 200 yards down the road to the school then fuck it, you might as well walk. If you have to put on a shed load of clothes each time you get in the car then, again, why not just bike it?

Of course this shit won't work on a nice summers day but if you're driving less than a mile on a nice summers day then you are an irredeemable cunt and we may as well just rip your roof off, by which I mean your head.

And the no crashing bit? Eye contact, folks, it's all about the eye contact. At low speeds, of course. Not a fucking thing is going to save the twats doing eighty on the country roads, no, nor their innocent victims neither, but I've noticed with all my crazy crosstown cruising that I am completely cut off from my surroundings, physically, and therefore on some level emotionally disconnected from everything but myself and my marvellous motoring machine. And I know that I would have a better idea of what even the most fucked up automobile assholes are going to do if I could just see the whites of their eyes.

Rip the fucking roofs off, folks, rip 'em off now.

Friday, January 18, 2008

And far away in some recess...

Friday, January 18, 2008 10

Rest in peace, you crazy fuck.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

You’ll possess fair Canaan’s land

Thursday, January 17, 2008 16
Riker had to colour in a picture of Moses for homework today. I took the opportunity to tell her that the God of the Old Testament was a bit of a prick. I didn't use that word, of course, but I did think it important for her to know that he was something of a fuck. I didn't use that word either. I think I said he, I mean He, was a bit nasty.

She asked me to elucidate.

'He was always, you know, getting grumpy and annoyed and smiting people and stuff..'

I swear to God, there was no pause at all.

'Oh, so like you, but with smiting?'

Just call me Yahweh, folks.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

They said to remove it would kill him, so poor Edward was doomed

Wednesday, January 16, 2008 16
I love it when the interweb helps me to dig deep and find my missing bitterness.

Yup, that bitterness, he fucked off about four days ago. Went on a big fucking binge. Drank till he puked, then drank some more. Got involved with some nasty people, as it happens. Did crack. Got a taste for it. Spent all his cash, quickly. Stole a bottle of peach schnapps from a tantrumming toddler toting mother as she loaded her shopping into the boot of her car. He drank it quickly to numb the shame. He's back now, though. Hungover, still coming down, and possessed of a terrible bitterness and rage. That's right, folks, my bitterness, he's super fucking bitter.

Here's where I found him, curled up in the comments, spitting, hissing, being a complete cunt. I'll be more specific in regard to his location. Here, here I found him, right here:

You're right in the approach that one's library is always a work in progress.

Innocent enough, you say. What's the fucking problem now, tosser? you mutter. Here's the problem, here's the guilt. My library, my precious books, hardback, softback, outsized, insized, my fucking library is no work in progress. It's a work in charity shops, it's a work in fucking boxes. I now have four small shelves of books to call my own. The rest are either packed away in a wardrobe, like so many Walt Disneys on ice waiting not for a cure for death but for the equally distant day when my passions attain parity with the rest of this family's whims or, they are scattered across the universe having been given away to make room for shitty, flavour of the fucking minute unloved toys, useless, ugly knick knacks or Common Law's concept of what comprises clutter and what does not.

You can expect to hear much detail on the most glorious summer of my life in future posts, but here's just one little aspect of it to whet the appetite. I worked in a bookshop that summer. And not some crappy chain store Waterstones, not some bullshit Barnes and Noble, but a real live, books piled all over the place, second-hand and remainders book shop. You'll never guess what it was called, this Pentictonian book shop, so I'll tell you. It was called 'The Book Shop'.

It was owned and run by a wonderful couple who may well have deeply cared for each other but did a pretty solid impersonation of hating each other's guts. Myself, I loved them both, because not only did they pay me in cash, they paid me in books. I shipped home two massive cardboard boxes from Canada and I suspect that Finbar forked out more loonies for this shipping than Pam and Bruce allowed me to part with for all the books that they contained.

All kinds of books, folks. Stephen King, Aldous Huxley. Charles Schulz, Nietzsche. Robert A. Heinlein, Jerome K. Jerome. You get the fucking picture. Lots of books. Add to this treasure trove the tome or two or three a week that a normal bookish boy will acquire throughout his formative years and and you find yourself, I found myself, with a pretty fucking sexy library. How I loved my books. How I loved my sexy, sexy library.

Gone now, mostly. What's left is inaccessible, what's on the shelves is almost all to do with the job.

I'm not bitter about arriving in from work at ten in the evening, tidying the place up, emptying the dishwasher, making sandwiches for the next day. I'm not bitter about getting up at seven the next day to help my family mess the place up, fill the dishwasher, discard the sandwiches and demand Frubes.

But my books, yes, I'm bitter about my books.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Once I stood beside a well of many words

Tuesday, January 15, 2008 8
Yesterday I did the following:

1) Recycled the Christmas tree.

2) Recycled the Christmas bottles. And that's a whole lot of fucking bottles, folks.

3) Drove extensively, all over the fucking shop, while cutting out exactly no times. That's a world record, right there.

4) Was polite, considerate and even, fuck me, jovial in the direction of my Mother in Law. I do this all the time of course, but you know what? On this occasion I believe I actually meant it.

5) Ran to work. Just about. Got on the Luas at Harcourt Street for three stops. That crazy bearded motherfucker in tights dripping all over the rush hour crowd? That was me, that was.

6) Taught two classes with an enthusiasm that was unprecedented in its lack of forcedness.

7) Was mostly happy and unstressed.

Oh Christ, what have I become?

Time to hold me down, folks. Waterboard me with vodka. Gas chamber me with dope. Do the Se7en force feeding thing but with Ecstasy instead of spaghetti hoops.

This shit cannot go on.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

When I'm rushing on my run, and I feel just like Jesus' son

Sunday, January 13, 2008 11
Fucking Fairview again, folks. You wait six months for one Fairview post and two come along at once, huh? For Fairview is not only where My Death hangs with his homies but also where I found myself hobbling, tearful and torn up one late summer morning in the year of our Lord 2006.

I had been injured before. Niggles and strains would keep me out for a couple of days here and there, and once, after a half-marathon in Canada, I was out for a whole three weeks. What a miserable twenty-one days that was for all those around me. No cunt like an injured runner cunt folks, no cunt at all.

But this was different. From the moment I ground to a halt on Annesley Bridge I knew that it was so. This was running death. Fairview finality. No run, no more. It was the breadth, the depth, the breath of the pain. The feeling of the left leg just not working as it should. I unsuccessfully choked back tears as I waited for a bus, shivering in my shorts and singlet.

I took the standard three weeks off, tried to come back. No dice. I did the physio thing. I waited six weeks. I tried to come back. Diceless I remained. And then I just let the motherfucker go. I was getting lots of cardio from the bike, the spin. If I was heavier, then I still wasn’t exactly fat. So I let it go. Tried once more after a year, felt that pain from hip to knee after just one mile, so I stopped and tried again to dismiss all those other years, all those other miles.

And then last week I did some work related squatting and didn’t find myself needing to stop after the first five. And so, filled with an alcohol free hope I wandered on to the rain-drenched streets last night and ran pain free for four whole miles. Oh folks, I am happy. You see before you the words of a happy man.

I am, of course, counting my battery farmed eggs before the rooster has even gotten it up, but everything about it felt different to every other comeback attempt. I was slow, yes, I was wheezy, no doubt, and I have aches from shoulder to foot today, but good aches, folks, correct aches.

I had forgotten how much I loved it. I had kidded myself that the spin classes were an adequate substitute but arse is what that is. Big fat hairy arse. Shitty homemade mechanical methadone to the the pure grade smack of tearing up the roads with just my legs, just my heart.

I'll be giving it another go tomorrow. Nice and easy, short and sweet. Wish me luck. Or don't. It's not like it'll make any fucking difference.

Friday, January 11, 2008

La mort attend sous l'oreiller que j'oublie de me réveiller

Friday, January 11, 2008 9
My Death lives in Fairview, Dublin 3, in a tastefully decorated two bedroomed semi on Brian Terrace.

Like Pratchett's rodents, folks, I have a Grim Reaper all to myself, my own personal personification of passing on. No cowl though, for the Angel of Gimme's end. This Pale Rider wears a black lycra bodysuit which flaps loosely about his skeletal form. On his head, a matching time trial helmet, in his hand not a scythe, but a wrench. He lingers outside the Xtravision, track-stopped on his fixie, awaiting my moment of truth.

Bikie Death Boy chose to locate in Fairview as it is here that we find a stretch of road about a kilometre in length where the bicycle path runs on the inside of a bus lane and on the outside of a long line of parking spaces. That's some smart planning Corporation dudes. Did some hardcore thinking through on that one, huh?

Hmm, shall we have them get hit by an opening car door or shall we push them in front of a bus? Hey, why not both? Why the hell not?

And to complete the picture, folks, if there were any more potholes on this bike lane, there would be no potholes at all.

Although he has signed a years lease and agreed to a frankly exorbitant rent for his humble, but servicable house, My Death does not anticipate a long stay on the Northside of our fair city. Every night he knows the end of his work is nearer.

And now it is tonight. Something approaching winter has finally arrived, the late night frost is forming and as I commute home from an evening class, my frightful Fixed Gear Phantom is beginning to get twitchy, to scootch back and forth restlessly.

He senses my approach and the approach of his destiny, his purpose.

He tosses his wrench from hand to hand.

He clicks in and out of his cleats.

And then, as Rosie and I hurtle past, he glides silently out behind us, elegantly eases into our slipstream and checks the hourglass.

Ahead is a Garda car sprawled in the cycle path outside the fast food joint, behind is a speeding 42a.

My Death raises his wrench.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

They'd probably put my head in a guillotine

Thursday, January 10, 2008 11
Right. I've talked about this before. I tried to get all esoteric and moody and if not Joycean then at least a little less Cartlandian than usual. But no one fucking got it except for V, the big stoner, the big student.

So let me put my cards on the table here folks, let me be as subtle as the dreams that plague me.

I'm cleaning right up. The booze is gone. I have walked past whiskey, canned Guinness and a veritable lake of leftover red wine over the last few days. I have returned to obsessing about my food intake, watching the portion sizes, scanning for saturated fats. These are the official decisions, the new week's resolutions that I hope to hold at least until I stop being the fattest fit cunt on the block.

Here comes the friction folks, hither the rub. I've cut out the smokey jokey too. Let me be clear: There is to be no commitment to this giving up from Gimme, no resolve attached to this bad boy. I'm pretty sure I'll be getting one together tomorrow evening, what with the no evening classes and the work free Saturday. But I just thought, why the hell not? Skinning up is just so much fucking effort. And then I have to go outside and fucking smoke the fucking thing. Huddling in the torrential rain on our Celtic Tiger decking is just for the nicotine addicts, those soulful smokers. Me, I couldn't be arsed.

You think drugs fuck you up, don't you folks? You witness your junkies doing their slow mo collapses on Marlborough Street, you see your stoners staring at the sweetie counter for hours on end at your local Spar. But you got it all wrong. It's the no drugs that fuck Gimme up, it's cleanliness that screws him over.

I can almost cope with the energy folks. Shit, it even has its benefits. The constant need to be moving moving moving is just about bearable and can lead to stuff being done, the achievement of otherwise unthinkable household goals. And the endless audible description of this moving moving moving I can nearly get behind too. That's right, folks, I talk. I talk to the Bridge Crew or if they're not around I talk to myself. It's an internal dialogue, externalised. It's a bore, but like I say, I can bear.

Oh but folks, the dreams. The dreams I cannot take. I fucking hate to get all Hamlet Act III Scene i on you twice in one post, but in this sleep what motherfucking dreams do come. I know I'm still sporting my ripped and tattered mortal coil, but a pause it must completely give me. I hate them so. I hate their vividness, I hate their colours. I hate the parts that I remember from the moment that I wake up, I hate the sections that creep up on my swiftly, mercilessly during the day. I hate what they say about me in their filthy obviousness, I despise all that they would have me learn.

I have no doubt that I dream whatever my reefer regimen but it's the unwelcome return of the short term memory that makes me so aware of what it is, that deep inside my messed up mind, my cocked up conciousness, I really really want.

And folks, it ain't pretty.

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

I'm the New England man. I'm vital in New England.

Tuesday, January 8, 2008 12
Fucking Gil called to the door today. Just what I needed as I tried to get the dinner together for those two ungrateful bints that I call the Bridge Crew. Yes, kids, that's right, it is not Christmas any more, Santa is effectively dead for another twelve months and we are therefore returning to the daily nightmare of trying to get you to ingest a vegetable or two. Great to be back, huh?

Ding, dong. Ding fucking dong.

'Mommy! Mommy! Mommy!' goes the concept-of-time-free Data.

'It's not Mommy, sweetie, it's too early.'

'Mommy, Mommy!'

'It's not Mommy.'

Nor is it. It's the opposite of Mommy. It's male. It's unattractive. It does not make me laugh. Gil, really, is the wrong name to attach to the person who greets me with his aggressive foot in the door, his vacuum salesman schtick. Gil has the charm of the loser, he elicits sympathy. This guy is just a fuck. A fuck with a weird face and a dreadful intensity. His face looks like one of those rubber president's masks that those sexy surfer types wear in 'Point Break'. But, horribly, it's a rubber mask of his own face. I am transfixed by this terrifying visage, which is the first reason I don't ease the door shut with a muttered 'not interested'.

The other reasons are his age and his rapid fire, cleverly constructed questions and statements. His age is old. And I offer my elders my respect until they do or say something that necessitates its withdrawal. This happens about five seconds later, but by then it's just too fucking late. I've answered one question out of misguided old person deference and merely making my voice grumpy isn't going to derail the onrushing sales train. We're here until we arrive at Destination Changing Telephone Operators or until this train spectacularly crashes, maiming and killing all on board.

On it hurtles, this train. I need to make the dinner. I need to tidy up. I need to shower. I have so many needs. I need to make this train crash and I don't have time to call up Elijah Price for tips. So here's what I say as rubber faced salesman foolishly pauses for breath:

'My wife makes these kinds of decisions. I just look after the children.'

The 'just', of course, is a betrayal of myself and everything that I am but it's more than fucking worth it, folks. I'd snog Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane if it meant a close to this conversation.

Mission accomplished. When I first lay eyes on Mr. Freaky Features I think his face is about as collapsed as a face can be, but folks, this face has more collapsage to offer. It goes all Twin Towers on him, on me. To say that he is embarrassed by my revelation is to understate the fuck out of his demeanour. He wants out. Reflexively, he promises to call again. But he lies. We won't be seeing this guy again. He gets the fucking message.

I tell Common Law this story.

'He was from Talk Talk,' I say.

'You should have just told him to fuck fuck off.'

'Yes. That probably would have been better.'

Monday, January 7, 2008

Don't believe in the Uzi, it just went off in my hand

Monday, January 7, 2008 13
I was a Nichiren Daishonin Buddhist for about six months when I was in my early twenties. My very early twenties. I culted it right up, folks, I really did. Having been smoothly indoctrinated by cast members of the soap that shall not be named, I chanted like a crazy motherfucker for weeks on end, every morning and every night. I went to meetings. I bought the beads. I got in touch with my inner Tina Turner. Me and Tina, we had time to kill.

And then one sunny Tuesday morning as I hauled myself out of bed and hit the mat to begin my recitation of the Lotus Sutra in a language that I didn't understand, I had me a moment of pure clarity, a road to Damascus unmasking. I would go so far as to that I was briefly, but forcefully enlightened.

You want to know what this illuminated neon sign in my brain, in my very consciousness said, don't you? Oh yes you do, folks. Even if you think you don't, you do. Here's a little build up for you. This glorious message, this unveiling of the truth, came to me, as is so often the case with Buddhism, in the form of a question. A gnomic question. A questing question. And the question, folks, was this:

What. The. Fuck. Are. You. Doing?

I had no reasonable answer. So I turned in my book, bag and beads and have not chanted Nam Nyho Renge Kyo since. But given my current chocolate and vodka starved state of mental and emotion vulnerability I reckon I'm ripe for the plucking by any half decent cult out there.

Come on Scientologists, take Gimme home.

Friday, January 4, 2008

A handshake of carbon monoxide

Friday, January 4, 2008 13
Oh Jesus fucking Christ on a Bianchi and all the angels and saints being pulled behind the Bianchi in one of those things that look kind of like a sidecar but go behind a bike that you see those uber green Emerald City inhabitants using to do their shopping with.

Oh that.

Is it really over? Must it be? Can't it not be? Can't I please have another two bottles of wine and another five whiskeys and soda? Can't I have just one more week without a twice or thrice daily time trial?

It's not like I stopped working. In fact I had a total of three days off over the fortnight's break and one day where I was 'sick'. I was sick though, really. Sick all over the place. And I told no lies. I made up no viruses or twenty four hour tumours. I said I was sick. So apologies to the mentlers who wanted to do spin on December 28th. I'm really fucking sorry.

The real not working for me is Common Law not working and the Bridge Crew not having to be dragged out of bed every morning and force fed porridge and Bran Flakes before being shoved off to school. Two weeks of no sandwich making, two weeks of not having to smile cheerily at carers and parents. Fuck, but I hate smiling cheerily. Particularly at parents. Particularly at the piss early hour of nine o'clock. Not doing it makes me smile, non-cheerily.

And no Common Law means no one to bug during the day, no one with whom to share the misery joy of parenting. No Common Law means the resumption of the regular need to cover the 10k between between home at work in 25 minutes. Go, go, go. Go motherfucker. Gotta be going 30km/h. Gotta be doing it now. Go, you fucking snail.

But thank fuck for the fact that we're almost out of hooch. Because I reckon the only way to deal with this crazy fucking grind is to stop the boozing, and start eating for fuel rather than for glorious, drolling pleasure. I may even stop opening the day with a joint. I'm kidding of course. I always wait until lunchtime.

So that's the plan, folks. That's the way forward. Drop the superfluous 5kg that I could be doing without dragging back and forth across the city, clean myself up, and get back to wanting there to be yet another fucking morning, yet another fucking day.

Thursday, January 3, 2008

About a lucky man who made the grade

Thursday, January 3, 2008 8
I feel more and more disconnected from the news. The fuck is that about? I always used to care about shit, folks, I was really big into the caring. Not that I particularly cared about the people behind the news, but the concepts got me all cared up. Oh, how I cared.

Early on I added sincerity to the mix. In fact I drunkenly phoned my father from a party when I was eighteen and beginning my two years in drama school, to get his advice on my sudden crisis of conscience in relation to my chosen career path. I wailed some shit about the vacuousness, the meaningless of the acting profession, in light of all the problems of the world. And this was before the world even had problems, folks. No global warming, no Rwanda or its echoes, no Bush, no 9/11, no Iraq. I don't actually know what was going on in 1992 because I was too busy being in acting school and being drunk. But I was sure there was bad stuff going on. And I cared about it, sincerely.

I don't remember Finbar's response. He obviously argued intelligently and persuasively in favour of fucking the world and sticking with the acting as I did not wake up next morning and run off to join Trocaire. Or maybe I just forgot everything he said and I just woke up too hungover to run off and join Trocaire. Either way, right? It's not like I didn't spend the subsequent ten years ignoring the vacuousness and the meaninglessness.

But I have always enjoyed the soap opera of world events, the grown-upness of being aware of, if not actively involved in, politics. But I don't think I give as much of a fuck anymore.

Naturally I'm completely disillusioned with Irish politics. The Greens took my youthful idealism out the back during the summer and drove a couple of screwdrivers into its brain, through the eyes. It's dead now, my youthful idealism. The Greens and their screwdriver to the brain gig saw to that.

And as we head towards a change of US president I see no hope of improvement on the global stage. Either there will be martial law and a more official coup than the one in 2002, or some other rich fucker who is controlled by big business and Israel will take the helm.

It's all a crock of shit. I have no control. And I do not care.

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

There's nothing you can sing that can't be sung

Wednesday, January 2, 2008 11
For the first time in eight years Common Law and I went out together on New Year's Eve. My wonderful mother volunteered to take the children so that we go and get completely fucked up.

I thought the best plan was to drink till we puked, eat pills till we coronally arrested and snort cocaine until we felt the need to join my sister in Krystle as she led the naked New Year dance around the burning effigy of Katy French.

Common Law thought the best plan was to go for a nice quiet evening in the local. So we went for a nice quiet evening in the local. And we were almost there when I realized that we had no cash and no cards. So we had to turn around and go back. I tried to explain.

'I was on the bike when I got the money out.'


'So I put the money in those rolled up ripped jeans. And the card too.'

'I see.'

'But then I changed, because you wouldn't want me to go to the pub with you in the rolled up ripped jeans. And I didn't move the money.'

'Yeah, I get it.'

'You know, you really should have checked that I had it when we were leaving.'

My partner of eleven years stopped walking and looked me in the eye.

'Gimme, are you seriously trying to blame me for the fact that you forgot the money and that we now have to walk all the way back to the house and then all the way back to the pub?'

'Well, no.'

'I'm glad to hear that.'

'But the jeans! The rip! I changed!'

'Yeah, not that much, you haven't.'

And this is why I love her. That and the fact that she still put out next morning.
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