Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Only evil seems to live forever

Tuesday, August 31, 2010 12
I guess my Maggie Gyllenhaal post is just going to have to wait. Mick Lally is dead and this fucks me right off. What is it about not a cunt actors that I know and dying? Sure, the whole Tom Murphy thing was ages ago but I can't recall any of the countless absolute wanker actors that I worked with eating dirt sandwiches in the interim. But maybe that's all for the best. Existence is such a horrible sufferfest that long life is surely a greater curse than a relatively youthful death. So I guess, woo hoo! Mick Lally is dead!

Mick was kind and thoughtful and patient and funny. Not like an actor at all. I really liked him. I would go so far as to say that he was my favourite person on the whole gig. But because I enjoy speaking ill of the dead I am searching desperately in my memory for any evidence of his being less than a perfect gent. This is the best I can do: in the days before Youtube, when such a thing was something of a rarity, I lent him a video tape of Richard Burton being interviewed on Parkinson. He never gave it back. I would occasionally bump into him post-Glenroe and he'd always say 'Oh, I still have that video of yours, I must get it back to you..'

But he never did. And now he's dead.

Monday, August 30, 2010

There's going to be a joke coming

Monday, August 30, 2010 6
My anti-corporate commercial busting schtick is taking a bit of a pounding these days, as I endlessly and needlessly lounge before the altar of day time television. I say needlessly because I should really be up and about, washing the dishes, mowing the lawn, ruling the children with an iron fist. It's my shoulderblade that's broken, not my leg or my spine or even said fist of iron. And what do I use my shoulder blade for? Fuck all, that's what. Sure, it's consistently and nauseatingly painful, but harden the fuck up, right? Wrong. I am a total pain pussy and thus shall continue to lie mewling upon the sunroom sofa bed, calling for Common Law to unwrap my Dime Bar sweeties.

But what the fuck has this to do with my contra The Man stance? It's the ads. you see, the commercials. I am supposed to despise them with all my faux-Hicksian heart, representing as they do the very nadir of our oh so bottomed-out civilization. But I fucking love them. I love them for the hope that they hold, the hope of something better. Advertisements are the Obama of television, though like Hussein, they will always let you down. Day time television, television in general in fact, is so heart-heartbreakingly shit that I have spent the first few days of my self-imposed confinement flicking like a zombie fly fisherman from channel to channel. And so to ease the digital pain I now rest at the ad breaks, waiting to see what's on next. Sure, I'd like to force feed the fat, sausage stealing anti-obesity PSA guy to death. Naturally I wish to take the shards of a smashed LCD tv and jam them into Craig Doyle's UPC eyes. And of course I want to take the Barry's Tea Bangkok bitch on a tour of the darker side of the Thai capital so that she can take some tasteful pictures to send back to Mammy. But mostly I sit through the break in hopeless hope, convinced that all this is merely a precursor to an old episode of Sapphire and Steel or Battle of the Planets, or Darwin help me, a showing of Inherit the Wind. It never is, of course, but thankfully another ad break is never more than a flick or two away.

I suppose I could get Common Law to pick me up an RTE guide, but I somehow doubt that's going to help with the onrushing depression.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Last night he flew to Baghdad in his magical armchair

Saturday, August 28, 2010 4
Picture me now, bouncing up and down on my tippy toes, doing that wavy hand to stop the tears of joy messing up my mascara bit. "Ooooh," I say at my most unintentionally camp. "Ooooh, I'm going to be an uncle!" Who'd have thought it? Well, fucking everyone truth be told. This brother of mine who knew how you know with a good melon was never getting married just for the tax breaks. This man has the trajectory of his life plotted out and until said trajectory is inevitably thrown off course by some kind of bizarre Hollywood cliché of fate or failing that, an alien invasion, the plans shall continue apace. And a logical part of this post marriage program was always going to be children. Congratulations to him and his lovely wife.

But it's not just them. Have you noticed? Everyone's having kids these days. People too young to be having them, people too old. The married and the unmarried. The rich and the poor. One of my oldest and bestest friends (second girl recently arrived, the tremendous sissy mickey) and the groin injecting junkie from my St James's ward. The mind-numbingly stupid and boring, and the soon to be so. And many of these people, even the smart ones, are doing it on fucking purpose. I mean, seriously. Do they have any idea how much children cost? Or how tedious and stressful they mostly are? Can they not see my rapidly greying hair, my spirit-crushed stance, my inability to stay awake past 11pm? Have they not heard of over-population, global warming, the re-introduction of college fees? What's the worse that could happen? Never experiencing the joy of an unrequested hug from your eleven year old? What you don't know can't hurt you. Dying alone with no one to listen to your interminable tales of former fake glories? Start a fucking podcast. A biologically driven feeling of emptiness and meaninglessness? Sure you get that anyway. How about the continuance of the human race? Don't make me fucking laugh. I mean, I really think we've done enough, don't you?

Case closed. Enough with the babies, people.

Now if you'll excuse me I need to go and criticise every little thing my daughter does as she kindly makes me lunch. Because there we have the only valid reason for procreation. Revenge.

Monday, August 23, 2010

And the sun hit the derrick and cast a bat wing shadow

Monday, August 23, 2010 11
With the exception of a gentle jaunt with the Nor Man, the most notable moment of which was the nimble avoidance of explosive bovine diarrhea, Sunday was my first proper ride since the Alps. I was not in ideal physical condition, having, on the previous afternoon, gone straight from the performance of a bizillion sqats to an accidental triple pint combo. And so it was that I hit the Sabbath hills in the company of Mr. M and my best Polish friend Marcin. My quads were achy and my head was fuzzy. It was glorious. Plenty of the usual climbing and a little never done before diversion to the allegedly highest paved point in the country. This involved some hairy descending on a steep, gravelly winding track. I skidded a little at one point but did not crash. Coming off Sally Gap I followed Mr M's line and for the first time ever was not downhill dropped by him. This felt very good. Later, on the final serious descent of the day, I skidded again, again on gravel and this time a little more violently. I regained control. With my heart pounding and a little tremor in my braking hands I took the rest of the decent at a more leisurely pace. All these close calls. But then there's always at least one a ride.

We split up just after Rathfarnham, Marcin heading back to his beautiful baby girl, Mr M to whatever it is that the childless do on a Sunday. I checked my clock and saw that I had plenty of time to shower, change pedals and have a little rewarmup before starting my spin at 12. It felt good to have done three hours and to still feel strong and ready for the rest of the day. I wished that i had made more use of the weather since I'd been back, made more of an effort to get out. I looked forward to the remaining warmish weeks and putting in some serious mileage. Glowing with all those good endorphins, I gave a little kick on the brief incline up to Orwell Road. I checked right as I approached the left hand turn. Clear, I would have called had I been with the boys. And then my hands came off the bars.

I don't know why. It happened fast. They were on the hoods. Then they weren't. I can only assume it was a bump or a pothole. But off they were. And as I was about to make a turn, albeit at a measly 30kmh, I really needed them on. Yeah, it happened fast. But everything else happened slow. Slowly, my latest bike and I sped toward the very wrong side of the road. Slowly, I tried to regain balance, get my hands on the bars, make the turn. Slowly, the red van in the corner of my eye hurtled towards me.

Oh so slowly. Slow enough to know I wasn't going to connect head on. Slow enough to know that I was certainly going to connect. I reached the bars to turn but not the brakes to slow. It was with pace and power that I shoulder-charged the van, pace and power enough to do insurance claim worthy damage to its side panel. With my shoulder. I bounced off. The bike flew away unscathed. I dropped to the tarmac and lay crumpled in the bright Sunday morning sun.
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