Saturday, 29 December 2012

donna's encouraging me to write again. so i have done a thing.


Relax

“Awaken, then,” the voice said. “Awaken, you foul nether creature of nobody’s womb, who lies motionless consumed inside your own leathery furnace. Arise, you filthy, pitiful waste of life, you who sit quivering when asked to relate to the world, when asked to speak, to walk, to listen, to thrive; if I could whip you from ear to ear to make you take part in this life-drama, I would – it is only my fear that you will shrink so far back from these overtones as to render my efforts immutable that stops me from doing so. You are made from melting plastic: toxins threaten those in your vicinity, and those who dare touch you find themselves facing lesions. In truth, you ought to commit suicide, but I am sure that would be far too easy for you. No – you prefer to live out your life like a horror novel, reading on just to see what will raise its head the next time you take a look at the black lake of your existence.”
That was my alarm: I had programmed it to say those words since I was fifteen, and not once have I regretted doing so. Why? I am not sure. All I know is my name is Stanley, and I emerge every day from a rotten tenant’s agreement with a spring in my step and grass in my hair, even though I am not aware of spending my nights lying in parks indolently like a strange but cultured tramp-head. Fragrances waft around my facade as I stir dust from a Monet morning, all brush strokes and abstract notions of beauty but whose viciousness is concealed only by the amateurish attempts to conceal its reality through the medium of
“Something or other,” seem to be my first words of the day – they will set its tone for the next twelve hours to come, at which point I will retract my statement and pretend it never happened, politician-style.
Grossman peers in through the door frame, head hanging like a lolloping lolly upon his quivering neck, jutting like a spike atop a boorish club devised of splintered wood. A doll’s head perches on his shoulder – I am fairly sure he is unaware of its existence. Grossman has no attempts left in life: he used up his last lifeline trying to sell tangerines to a group of youths whose fathers were silicon-based lifeforms and as a result “the entire thing went ker-blooey”. Since then he has existed on subsidiaries and steak houses.
“Bottom of the rung, still, I see,” he muses, eyes widening as he sees an imaginary cradle crying perched on the hilltop of my upper shelf that leads to the nearby inglenook within which bats and scaramanga beetles gather to await the coming storm. Guinness-like skies tell stories of lethal implementation from an angry deity whose name appears to me in a dream when I am about to be twenty-eight. Shit.
“Spend too much time in the future, lad,” speaks Grossman, as he loses his grip on the door and falls to the floor, wrapping his body around it, as though he were attempting a hug. “Never give time to your present day needs and necessities. Food and nonesuch. Wicker baskets’ importance is highly underestimated. Cajole a merchant of sesame seeds into giving you a pass to the Delta of no Reaction, lest you entail a foolish notion of pliability.” He slithered out the door,
With me calling after him, “What in the name of giants’ balls are you talking about, man?” and I stammered, which let me down and didn’t allow me to save face. I find it increasingly difficult to save face: I had a face-saving of 2 the other day, but then I spent my face on an elastic band which I used to secure my packet of Muscovado sugar to its tether in order to keep it from escaping my cupboard, for it knew it could find its owner and thus begin the Reckoning. For, in this crazy-ass world in which I usually try not to live, sugar and water are the rarest of all ingredients. I expect the unexpected, apart from that time when I expected an Amazon package to arrive, and, believe it or not, it actually did. For a short time I took to expecting the expected, before realising that if it was ‘the expected’ then it was already expected, and so did not require me to expect it. As a result I had a limbo period of expecting neither the expected nor the unexpected, but simply expected. I sat on my butt and expected. I realised I expected too much when I went to find the President and expected. Then I got arrested and expected. Then I was released and expected. But. It turns out that expectation creates nothingness and so I expected the unexpected instead because in the end, it’s the unexpected that makes life so damned interesting and colourful: if all your life was as you expected, if all your plans came to fruition, then you have lived a pre-programmed sort of life who rather goes against the notion of free will, does it not? And therefore you deserve to take a trip down Unaware Road, and battle the cosmos like I do every time I leave my bed,
Which I had finally managed to this morning, exiting it via the propulsion of my torso and legs combining to create a floppy notion of elasticity that helped construct a mechanism – that once my body hit the floor, it would stop falling, and eventually would begin a process of falling and catching itself that some referred to as walking. I walked. The bathroom was en-suite and I walked. Clothes came off me and I stepped. The bath hugged me in its primitive waters and I sank. Oceans of age and Christian views of redemption encompassed me in a foetal embrace, my posture ascertained by its lack of relation to anything outside the meandering atoms of wary watery wastrel neediness: mind reduction to baby state meant no more need to adhere. Under the water the sounds all faded until I heard only my heartbeat. Static. No more than this. Life, reduced. Interesting how many thoughts spring to mind when there’s nothing to think about.

Florence appeared at the hour some time later. My hair was being attacked by a towel which perched in my hands. Perhaps it would be good if I answered the door with my head tousled. Then I would look sexy. Then things might get more real. The fuzziness of things become all too evident when you can see the room’s dust in the arc beam flitting through the window blinds. I open the door, changing the tense of my life.
“Blimey,” she says, gazing up at my head, eyes blinking like a child’s held in the gaze of Santa Claus, “Your hair’s gone weird.”
“I know,” I say sheepishly, automatically adjusting as she stumbles and mumbles her way in, shopping bags trailing after her.
“Don’t change it,” she almost orders as she lays the bags upon the counter that makes up the main facet of our kitchenette and, laying bags out, “I quite like it.” There is a slight pause, before she ransacks her own contents and shovels them into the various holes of the kitchen: fridge, bread bin, fridge, cupboard, drawer, fridge, cupboard, bread bin, fridge, cupboard...
“Pop Tarts,” I nearly scream, for I have attempted to jump onto the sofa from the back side of it (perched as it is in the middle of the room) but have managed to snag my foot on the back end of the sofa, so that as I land upon its weary cushions I realise I may have possibly broken my foot.
“You’re fine,” she says, after a moment. “Help me with this?”
Florence is my icon, my moment. I scoot towards her vicinity and expertlessly plunge myself into the workload.
“Stop trying to impress me by being dedicated. You know it makes me uncomfortable when you try to impress me.”
“I know,” I say, although I don’t know and feel a little bewildered. “I just want to get this finitoed.”
“Spanish, eh?” she offers, as a way of acknowledging my apology through the only lie possible. “Well vamos yourself over to the kettle and make me a cuppa please.”
“Ok, mademoiselle,” I say, poised to make the greatest cup of tea known to woman.
“French now.”
“Seems that way.”
There is an awkward pause during which I stand next to the kettle, listening for it to boil, watching her arse as she fills the fridge with various pre-sliced cheeses. I remember the first time I caught sight of that arse. It was magnificent. I can’t imagine a better arse for the life of me. People talk about the perfect arse, but they don’t get it. This was the perfect arse because it was so gloriously imperfect. Barbie is the ‘perfect’ woman, but she is not perfect. No – I need a glorious arse like this, not a structured one. A gloriarse.
“Enjoying the view?” she said, wriggling for my benefit.
“Afraid so,” I said, half to myself.
She backed up into me and I stood there unable to move for a moment. Then she rose and asked me to close my eyes. Of course I did so – and she knew I would because she knew that I was in the sort of mood where I would do anything she asked me to, even if it meant eating something she had shovelled into my mouth without asking my permission, and making me chew on it, all the while enjoying the fact that whatever the hell she had given me was some kind of... what the hell?
“Open your eyes.”
I opened them to see her staring facelessly, a look of slight amusement on her face. “You like?”
I made a noise that let her know I didn’t but was too polite to say no.
“Not that surprising.”
She smiled when my eyes widened. Why hadn’t I spat this thing out?
“Why?” I said through facial expression.
“I’ll tell you when you’ve swallowed it.”
I gulped it down. “What poison have you given me?”
“Not telling you.”
I blinked at her. “Seriously, what was it?”
“What do you think it was?”
“Huh,” I said. “You think I care what it was? You’re not going to play that game with me, missy.” I strode defiantly back into the lounge and parked on the sofa. “You think I care what it was, you’ve got another thing coming. In fact, I didn’t even dislike it. I didn’t like it either. It was nothing to me. I couldn’t give a toss.”
“You ate dog.”
I stood up and pointed a finger at her. “Fuck you.”
“I’m joking,” she said, her face still deadpan. “It wasn’t dog.”
I pointed my other finger. “Fuck you.”
“It was ostrich.”
“Fuck...” I began, before wondering whether I was actually offended. Ostriches? Who really gave a damn about ostriches? I hadn’t seen them before, and from what I had heard, they could be quite vicious. “Actually, that’s ok. Where on earth did you get ostrich from?”
“Sainsbury’s.”
“Ah, right.”

And so settled the day. Nothing had happened. There was no story yet. We existed – co-existed – in a bubble of our own uncertainty. But it was ours. Life was not a story. There are no plans. Humanity was no plan. I had eaten an ostrich today, and that was surely enough. What else did They want from me? To run an advertising campaign persuading people to eat ostrich? No. To run an advertising campaign persuading people not to eat ostrich? Never. What we eat defines us, and if there is a God, then God can judge us by our diet at The End. God is in fact a dietician. God is Gok Wan.
“God Wan,” I blurted.
“No,” Florence replied, sucking on a lollipop, “God is Jeremy Kyle.”
“Surely not.” I turned to her, face pleading and saddened. “Surely not.”
“Alright, it’s not him. But I do know who it is.”
“Go on,” I said, face dropping as I succumbed.
“Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers.”
“Two people?”
“Yeah.”
“Why them?”
“Absolute perfection.”
We were watching an advert for Lindt chocolate. “The chocolate?”
“Yeah.”
“But what about.”
“Who.”
“Dunno.”
Stoned we were; and stoned we would be, for a while yet. The sun was not yet our familiar. There were no imperatives to meet its demands. Even when the imperatives made our acquaintance, we were not obliged to follow. I do not respect the sun. My ideal hours of sleep are from 2 in the morning to half 10 in the morning. I want to miss at least four hours’ worth of sun each day. The sun is given far too much respect, far too much attention. The sun blathers at us and we listen. But it is no God. Gok Wan filled that role aeons ago. The sun is no Ra. It is simply a blithering idiot, glaring indolently at us in expectation that we’ll lie in front of it and let it shit into our faces, before giving us that final insult, cancer.
“I’d rather smoke a cigarette!” I suddenly shouted in anger.
“Sit down,” said Florence, calmly.
“I am – oh.” I settled once more, painfully aware that the configuration my body had moulded itself into only moments before had been completely disrupted, and the impossible task now was to try and reconfigure myself to match that precision of relaxation – the position of all positions. But I had fallen. I could not relax like I had. Yes, I was sitting in almost the same position, but that’s the key word – almost. I could not capture that state again. I was Adam, expelling myself from Adam with a rocket-launcher of disgust. A fart. Perhaps that’s why God expelled them. Eve farted.
“Perhaps God...” I began, before Florence pointed at the television and laughed.
“Look at that,” she said.
A man telling the news. “What?”
“Just look at him,” she said, tears emerging from her eyes.
I looked. And I looked. And looked.
“I’m laughing, but I don’t know why. Am I being stupid?” she said, wiping her eyes, “Am I that stoned?”
“No,” I lied. “I see it too.” I attempted a fake laugh. To my surprise it sounded quite real. It was then I realised his face. And I laughed.
Laughter echoed throughout the room, up through the house, out through the vents, out to the street, where it bewildered passers-by, on their way to whatever place they felt they needed to go, to make money they felt they needed to make, so they could buy their newly-acquired friends whatever drinks they needed to drink, and then drink as much as they needed to drink in order to laugh however much they felt they needed to laugh in order to justify their existence however much they needed to exist. And then do it all again on Monday. And then again. And again.
“I am exhausted,” I said, checking my watch. It had been two minutes. Watch might be broken.
“Is my watch broken?” I suggested. “It is?”
“Chuck it in the bin,” Florence said, lighting another.
I chucked it in the bin, a voice somewhere in the back of my head telling me it was perfectly operational. But that voice could be ignored for now. That was happiness: ignoring that voice.

Friday, 28 December 2012

"You are going to kill me," he said, "and that will protect society from me."


Ted Bundy actually said this.

He's so evil and yet somehow utterly interesting :\

Wednesday, 26 December 2012

Memorable moments of 2012 (in no order):

1. Going shopping with Donna and realising it felt 'normal'.
2. Seeing you whitey so bad I was one finger press from dialling 999
3. Making thirty people love me by mistake by making the point that "too many old books have the word 'ejaculated' in them"
4. Coming to terms with my own hitherto unconfronted feelings of emptiness whilst lying on a pavement high on LSD
5. And sadly, fucking my ex in a swimming pool owned by my parents and feeling like the world's most alpha  male
6. Also being told by my therapist that I was a postmodernist, having not mentioned the phrase at all before

Brief summary of the new albums I've heard this year. To be honest, I've spent most of the year being preoccupied and haven't really opened up to much new.

the black keys albums - excellent blues rock. Recommend for those who like white stripes, etc.
babel - mumford and sons: I really liked this album although he tends to sound a bit shouty when he rises an octave. The general sound is just too lovable to resist. Some say MOR - I say MORE.
byrds albums - The byrds are ok - everyone knows what their sound is. Strnagely, Sweetheart of the Rodeo was the most interesting album, I found. They make country music palatable. I like acid rock too - that mix of innocence combined with Trippy Shit.
rolling stones albums - there are  only really three albums worth bothering with: beggars banquet [sic], let it bleed, and sticky fingers. Their sound is what makes them stand out. My favourite track? Moonlight Mile. Part of my excellent playlist that I created just after being dumped, which I still enjoy listening to today.
big science - laurie anderson: Very quirky and interesting. Probably the only 'album' I've enjoyed as an album.
the black rain - anoice: Dark, gloomy, dorian, gothic, and a final track that sounds like the track used in 28 days later. Epic. again, used one of the tracks in my playlist.
max richter - His music is lovely neo-classical. Very melancholy, tinged with dissonance but never straying into modernist bullshit. It's just somehow impossible to dislike his music.
blunderbuss - jack white: Lyrically I was startled to hear Jack White sound as glum as he did. fortunately he has some lovely backing singers that propel each song into pop territory.
book of eli soundtrack - I love it for Panoramic. Ruined however by the fact it reminds me of the ex. Being with Donna is great but I still feel that idiotic longing for closure. Retarded, I know.
born to die - lana del ray: Sad to say, this is the album I've probably listened to the most out of these. I like to sing along an octave below her so that I sound like Johnny Cash. How can I resist a song called Born to Die? She's so wonderfully fake.
boys and girls - alabama shakes: Really beautiful bluesy stuff. Remember listenig to this two days after being dumped and crying the whole way through... should really give it another go now that I feel better (I think I do anyway)
butterfly - hans arafna: Fucking horrendous. Play this whilst on a Drug and your mind will break. Quite beautiful in its horror.
chinese classical music: CHING CHONG BING BONG
chips from the chocolate fireball - the dukes of stratosphear - Excellent pastiche album of sixties psychedelia. Made in the 80s but i didn't realise that until later. I really like the album - it's a little tricky to get into, but they've absolutely nailed the sound. Listen to Love, and S.F. Sorrow, then listen to this. It just sounds so similar.
the colourful world - ashok pathak: Only heard this recently, and may explore the fact that it's made me fall in love with Indian classical music. I like it because I could play along to it. I like it because you put on incense and fall into a trance. I like it for its modality.
constellations - balmorhea: cool ambient stuff.
country blues - dock boggs: Incredibly authentic recordings from the 20s of old blues stuff. People singing who you can just tell have no teeth.
crazy clown time - david lynch: I like this for one track and one track alone: Strange and Unproductive Thinking. Like someone said on its youtube page - it's not really a song, it's a groove. But an excellent one. I like the track  because I know someay I can take the piss out of it.
cruisin for a boozin - rum rebellion: Songs that are rowdy and drunkish. think Pogues but tongue-in-cheek. Or rather, tongue on floor.
low albums: Not sure if I discovered Low last year, but t his year they've really grown on me. Brilliant band.
the damnation of faust - berlioz: I like Berlioz's sound - it's like Beethoven but hyper. I find operas tricky to get into these days: I don't have the patience I used to to sit and read the .... uh, what's it called? script?
dear... - keaton henson: I don't remember this but I remember liking it.
the deathly hallows part ii - alexandre desplat: Only got it becausee i remember watching the film and thinking the music was epic. then I heard the soundtrack and realised it wasn't. Desplat's only redeeming feature is his stupid name. Imagine him at school. "What's yer surname, Alex? "Fuck."
definitely maybe - oasis: For some reason I had a brief period where i listened to this. I like the track Columbia because of the interesting jam bit at the end.
demos for the dreaming - parenthetical girls: Beatufiul cover versions of kate bush songs. Under the Ivy is given a synth treatment, a male vocal, and it actually works. Recommended.
director's cut - kate bush: Shite
50 words for snow - kate bush: Vaguely interesting, wishy-washy album. To be honest, it's just nice to see her still going. as long as her work isn't awfully shit, then she can bring out stuff like this forever. Aerial saved her reputation and was possibly her best album, so it doesn't really matter that this was shite.
the dissolution of eternity - dargaard: Erm, I think dargaard are ambient or something.
Karen Dalton - three albums, with a voice that sounds like Janis Joplin if Janis Joplin was mixed with Bob Dylan and left out in the snow with nothing but a pound of heroin and whisky. good in small doses.
doll doll doll - venetian snares: Grim. I only mention that I got this because it was mentioned on peep show. I hate this kind of music with a passion.
drive soundtrack: not sure if I got this a year ago but I've only really listened to it recently. It is great. Bit of a shame it descends into incidental music: would have been nice for it to do what Donnie Darko did and intersperse pop with the classical.
eli and the thirteenth confession - laura nyro: Hated this when I first heard it, especially since for some reason I had bougbht it on CD. Listened to it again and wasn't bad.
endless path ep - babe rainbow: No idea.
dj shadow - endtroducing: I really wanted to love this because it's a classic. turns out it bored me to death. Think Avalanches if they were boring.
eternity rites - dargaard: dunno
the fame monster - lady gaga: I only got this for Bad Romance, which I love for some reason.
the family tree: the roots - radical face: Not as good as Ghost but nice enough. His lyrics are a bit shit now alas.
the fantasist - maxence cyrin: Was mad about this for a while. I can't remember why. It was good while it lasted, like a packet of Skittles.
extended lotr sonudtracks: again sadly I've listened to these more way too much, especially the ROTK one. Every time I hear the crack of doom track it gives me goosebumps. Such power, and intensity, that one does not get from the original soundtrack. Highly recommended, although it only really hits its stride towards the final third.
for all the innocence - lite: No idea
fuck knows - emili toivenon: Couldn't even get the album name.
gemini - wild nothing: Fuck knows.
the glass bead game - james blackshaw: No idea.
grinderman - grinderman: Pretty cool. No Pussy Blues grabbed me from the first time I heard the line 'my face is finished'.
harjedalspipan - various: interesting scandinavia sound.
one from the night - tom waits: Surprisingly pretty movie soundtrack. Waits' growl offset by a female accompinanentntntntnt. I loved this.
homogenic - bjork: Again I wanted to love this but I don't get bjork's appeal or 'genius'.
helplessness blues - fleet foxes: Probably the best album from this lot. Probably. Very pretty. First time i listened to it I fell asleep then was woken, scared out of my wits by a weird jazzy section in 'the shrine/an argument'. Kind of melodies that seem forged from the ground. Lyrics good too. I remember being struck somehow by 'my only regret is my debt' or something
hurry up we're dreaming - m83: I was in love with this album, but sadly it's still tainted by association. And over-listening perhaps. It reminds me too much of when I was happy :\
bily childish: Almost tempted to delete all his stuff. Hate it
into the void - ghola: Ambient dark shite.
zelda: Not sure if I got into this last year, but I still listen to the majora's mask album. Something about it - mixture of  nostalgia, creepiness, general unease - just gets me. To have played Majora's Mask makes me feel somehow special. I experienced possibly the most profound and creepy game ever. It's like I've been a victim of abuse.
the lonesome crowded west - modest mouse: dunno
me and armini - emilia torrini: I really liked this album to the point that I played it when my mum was in my room. Sadly at that point I also realised it's strangely boring.
meadow rituals - luup: Pretty Scandinavian sound.
the money store - death grips: FUCKING SHIT. NO IDEA WHY IT IS RATED SO HIGHLY
mylo xyloto - coldplay: not bad. I really liked Princess of China.
not your kind of people - garbage: recommended on fb by sacha of all people. Not bad at all. Bit loud though.
an omen - how to destroy angels: Disappointing. Bought this on vinyl just to give the player a workout. Shame it was shit. I miss NIN. The last NIN album was actually really good. He seems too happy now, too old.
substrata - biosphere: excellent ambient. Recommended.
suspiria - goblin: Brilliant soudntrack - but you know that.
tempest - bob dylan: Not very good imo. Somehow didn't grab me. To be honest, like Kate Bush, as long as he's not making horrendous albums, it's just nice to see him doing it still.
theatre is evil - amanda palmer: Listened to it once. Don't remmeber anything about it. Where's the darkness? It was poppy and forgettable, like my cat if I had amnesia.
Go-qualia: some ambient album that's pretty good.

My lack of passion in anything new is showing. I can barely read, barely play new games, barely watch new films. If I had a less stressful job, and maybe even lived elsewhere, I might just open up again to this curious world. As it stands I feel like I'm stuck in a rut, and don't want to get out of it.

Top 5 Albums of my year:
1. Meadow Rituals - Luup
2. Blunderbuss - Jack White
3. Hurry Up, We're Dreaming - M83
4. Helplessness Blues - Fleet Foxes
5. Extended Return of the King Soundtrack - Howard Shore (a sad indictment of my current state, I know)

My epic playlist that I've over-played too much:

Moonlight Mile - The Rolling Stones
Princess of China - Coldplay
Finale - Anoice
Take Me With You When You Go - Jack White
Bleeder - Emilia Torrini
Long Snake Moan - PJ Harvey
Jar of Hearts - Christina Perri
Jeremy - Pearl Jam
I Had a King - Joni Mitchell
Nightcall - Kavinsky and Lovefoxxxxxxxxx
Laser Beam - Low
O Magnum Mysterium - Martin (?) Lauridsen
Song of Healing - Kondi Kojo
Terraplane Blues - Robert Johnson
The Crack of Doom - Howard Shore
Sleep - Go-qualia
Blood for Poppies - Garbage
Raconte-Moi Une Histoire - M83

Monday, 17 December 2012

Well I fucked it up

and told my parents I want to quit

Now my mum's crying and my dad's saying I'll struggle to find a job

Sunday, 16 December 2012

Final formal observation

Last chance saloon.

Probably failed already, all things considered.

Kind of mindset I have isn't conducive to teaching. I'm unstable, a joker in the pack. A wildcard. Someone who plays with a loose deck. Holds ten aces up his sleeve and doesn't even sit at the table when he plays. Kind of stands by the bar, wrapped in smoke. Isn't invited to the game: plays anyway. Deals to no one but himself. Wins and loses by his own dealt hand. Nobody realises he's playing. But he plays.

Gerald Scuseme wrapped a cigarillo around a rampage, asking for the time. Double dice rolled and up came jacks and nines. Cruising down the highway blowing smoke out from the window. Last time I tried to eat jam I found myself in Toledo. Asked a nearby gangster where I might find shaving cream. He told me try the pharmacy, and then he wiped my screen. Thought I had it made when I went down to sell my gin. Turns out I had a slow uptake and it was closing up time again. So I rolled down to the barber's where I got my solid suit. He told me it was a razor sharp kind of look and kind of cute. Along the way I held onto the rail of ice-cold glass, and then I went down to the arcade, and had a blast. I won a couple of trillion dollars which I spent on numerous oils. Then the levees broke and my investment was all ruined over and spoiled. So I rolled up to the desert in my '49 Jeep Cherokee; the desert yielded no secrets, far as the naked eye could see. But on the sands came running up a little chipmunk called Jerome; a gleam in his eye, he suggested I ride down into his home. We buried down through thickened sands until I came across, a sturdy gate made out of locks and railings lined with moss. Deep underground this place was buried, I thought that pretty strange - until I realised I wasn't in the desert, I was just feeling deranged. My temperate had passed the mark beyond which sane men talk, and as a result I thought it best to stop up my panic with cork. I let it pass and hung onto his every sounding word, and because of this I felt myself becoming a man unlearned. My aforementioned ability to absorb knowledge now had gone: I threw it away on a railroad track outside of Lexington. And on that train I said hello to a banana made of stone. And he said to me that the best way down is to try and find your way home. So I said goodbye to the familiar and bestowed value on the unknown.

And there I am now facing the prospect of unemployment once again. But in the end my fate is only the fate of all learned men. The fate of learned men who cannot specialise in mechanised tasks; who struggle with instructions because they come from people speaking out of their arse.

Saturday, 24 November 2012

VERY rough initial draft of an essay that I will laugh at later


When Teacher Talks, Who Learns?

When the word ‘teaching’ is mentioned, the first image that may spring to a PGCE student’s mind may be a teacher telling students some new information, and assuming a fascinated audience gaping in awe at the wide ranging, life-changing knowledge that this god-like figure imparts from the front of the room. My father, who ended up becoming a headteacher, was asked when he took his own teacher training what he thought made a good teacher. The answer of “someone who imparts information” was met with a blunt “that’s exactly what teaching isn’t”. His reaction, forty years ago, was understandable – but this idea of what teaching is still holds sway over the public, as well as training teachers.

What I’ve discovered is that, for all my foresight and high-minded approaches based on a certainty that I would never fall into the trap of becoming a pedagogic, by-rote teaching, I too have fallen into the trap of talking too much. And not talking in the correct way, either. What has become apparent to me as my planning has developed is the need to realise that questioning and teacher talk in lessons is not spontaneous, as the best teachers would have students believe. All questioning, all responses, are mapped out, and belie their surface appearance of interest and informality by very deliberately tapping into the well of students’ thought processes and unlocking the mechanisms of independent thought.

What is teaching? It is easier to say what teaching is not. As the gentleman above would vouch for, teaching is not about the passive process of being taught. It is not about the teacher. It is of course aided by a teacher’s obvious passion for a subject, and ability to use praise constructively, but that can only go so far. In my practise I am aware that almost reflexively I am able to use praise in a more constructive and thoughtful way than throwing out a ‘well done’ now and then. What matters is what the student has actually achieved in order to receive praise.

IFR, whereby knowledge is reflected back at the teacher, functions as an exercise in satisfying a teacher’s vanity. It is not the student that is talking. It is the teacher’s words being spoken back to them. In my experience, I have seen excellent examples of learning through verbal feedback, and also examples of teacher-led lessons where the students absorb an opinion and decide to use as their own. I myself have taught these lessons.

A year 9 top set doing war poetry. I began my first war poetry lesson deciding to teach Belfast Confetti. Instantly, the idea of ‘teaching’ a poem seems somehow self-defeating; for, if the purpose of learning is for students to have the tools to apply independently-reached conclusions, how can a solitary poem be ‘taught’? But, at school, I distinctly remember plodding through poems one by one, learning them, knowing them well, coming to my own conclusions but seemingly afraid of utilising my own opinions because that went against what I had been taught to think about them. Until one moment in sixth form college, where a teacher who had gone through the works of Blake with us, finally told us to pick any poem of his we hadn’t read before and study it. At that moment, I found ‘The Sick Rose’, realised I had come to my own interpretation without any outside help and, as a result, decided that the poem therefore belonged to me. Those words were mine because my opinion was mine. And as a result I memorised it, simply because I felt like it always had significance.

What had become evident however was the need for the teacher to explain and tell us the background of Blake’s poetry. I cannot recall whether we spent lessons listening to her interpret other poems before giving us the independent study, but I assume she did. The tools of interpretation had been laid down, and it was only then that I came to realise that the teacher’s opinion needn’t necessarily be watertight, unless I learned something new regarding the context of the poem that could have changed my opinion. This is where the problem of teacher authority becomes apparent. When teaching towards textual study, i.e. A02 and A06, as I am now, it becomes necessary then to encourage students to pick out parts of a text and make their own evaluations of ‘writer’s intention’. It took me until a week ago to realise that being able to say the effect of a word also means that the reader is thinking about the writer’s intention. My understanding was that to relate a work to context, i.e. A06, meant relating it to the history of the writer. Instead it appears, at least in my department, simply to mean a loose approximation of writer’s intent with a particular word or phrase, used to convey a particular feeling. So in other words, the A06 is a curious mix of reader’s interpretation and assumption of author’s intention regarding language, without any recourse to the personal history of the writer.

The slightly problematic nature of this would be reflected if, for example, I decided that Blake’s use of the word ‘howling storm’ meant he lived in a stormy climate, which, being based in London, he doesn’t. This being a slightly disingenuous example, but nonetheless coming back to the idea of knowing when a teacher has to step in. Is teaching essentially a process of stepping in when a student makes a mistake? As a result, surely this would end up discouraging students from finding their own conclusions: only the most confident of top set pupils would be able to walk into a class and looking forward to making a mistake in front of an entire class.

The teacher, in outstanding lessons, may sometimes take the role of magician. What is hiding beneath the hat? Using higher-order thinking, the class can debate and argue over it, and in groups produce worksheets and presentations. This is all well and good if the class is right, or has been steered towards their conclusions by the teacher (a process I am finding almost deceitful when I implement it), but if the class misses the mark completely, what ends up being left is a sense of failure both from the students and the teacher.

When teaching that year 9 class in my lesson before, I encountered a feeling of angst when informing students that there was no right answer. When teaching Belfast Confetti, I decided to steer them towards the conclusions I was looking for. As a result, there was some independent thought, and I tried as hard as I could not to ask closed questions, but in the end, I couldn’t help but feel like I’d betrayed them a little when finally ‘we’ came up with the conclusion that the ‘asterisk on the map’ represented the point where the bomb exploded. What could I have done better to let them reach that conclusion? The exercise I gave them, which was to draw out their own map, marking all the punctuation on it, could have been ample enough.

The issue here is that the thought process I was looking for, which was association with imagery, involved finding a single ‘correct’ answer. Yes, I would gladly have welcomed other possible interpretations, but none appeared forthcoming. The thought process of linking the image of the asterisk with the idea of the bomb site on a map just did not appear for a single student. So I ended up ‘teaching’ it to them. I practically gave a lecture. What I perhaps could  have done was tell them the entire history behind The Troubles, which would have been a lesson in itself. The tools of interpretation taught to them by the teacher, which was PRAMSROAR:
Personification
Repetition
Alliteration
Metaphor
Sibilance
Rhyme
Onomatopaeia
Adjectives
Rhythm

only served to highlight to me how reliant these students had become on the teacher, seeing as they were required to go over these every single lesson. These tools for independent analysis were themselves ‘taught’. By-rote learning used in order to teach independent learning? A contradiction, a confusion, bound up in its own goodwill. These terms belong to the teacher, and always will. Picking out and finding these within a poem like a treasure hunt – that is what these pupils specialised in. But being able to explain the effects? Being able to evaluate independently? Impossible, when that requires something that cannot be taught – love of words.

What I would love to do one day with a top set class who have finished all their unit, and memorised all the acronyms they need, and yet struggle with evaluation, is just to stand there and tell them about the first ever poem written. It could be real, or it could be made up. I want them to visualise poetry whose words are not made prisoner by these labels shorn of signifier, which so defeats the point of poetry. I want them to imagine the first ever poem critic who, upon seeing an interesting phrase, found themselves explaining why they liked it. Then finding themselves making up a word to describe that effect. I want students to understand that these arbitrary phrases that are taught by-rote and churned out in essay after essay are simply expressions reflecting enjoyment of a word or phrase. Yes, they are like nets catching butterflies, but then, having caught them, let the butterflies go again. What pupils would truly benefit from is to be able simply to enjoy the poems, and do the catching later.

In How To Be a Brilliant English Teacher, Wright talks about a lesson where a teacher begins by drawing a picture of a face, and next to it, writing ‘head like an egg’. This leads to pupils learning within a second what similes are. Within moments they are even applying it themselves by drawing on the board. The remarkable simplicity of it is matched only by how beautifully it leads to learning, slicing through the usual simile clich├ęs like a knife through butter.

What happened in that lesson? Simile was not taught. Nor was it shown. It used prior knowledge of metaphor and simile that students simply hadn’t learned how to label yet. It seems as though teaching is a balance between the by-rote (today, we are learning about metaphor...) and the stepping-back process from actual ‘teaching’. The lesson in question simply modelled. The teacher was silent. There was no voice, no IFR, no praise, only modelling.

In future, is this what the teacher must become? A student showing other students what they should be doing? Should the spoken word only consist of question after question that, like magical power words, unlock student’s thought processes allowing application? If that is the case, then essentially this gradual stripping-away approach may ironically end up with the teacher themselves being the victim of by-rote learning. Each moment that has been so carefully fine-tuned, each word making sure the aim is met – does this perhaps remove any last trace of individuality from the teacher? Perhaps this is what makes an ideal teacher – someone who merely facilitates, who guides students anonymously like a gondola rower guiding holidaymakers through Venice. The attainment of outstanding learning means that the traditional notions of teaching comes into question.

And yet... last Friday I found myself standing before a class who were required to use high-order thinking in regards to photographs of the Holocaust. It was a top set year 7 whose attitude to learning was impeccable. They were more than willing to take up the task of answering questions on the photos they had given, which went along the lines of ‘What can you see’, ‘what do you want to know more about’, ‘what could be happening’. Going along the lines of Bloom’s Taxonomy, I assumed that pupils would form conclusions by themselves, and even though they might end up getting it wrong, at least the thought process was sound.

Unfortunately, the nature of the lesson aim meant that the exercise was inherently flawed. For all the higher-order thinking and independent learning that had seemingly taken place, it just seemed to me to be a starter that was a waste of everyone’s time. The aim, which was to understand the social context behind the novel The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas, was simply not being met.

Yes, at one point they watched a video for two minutes. Yes, at another point, they undertook an exercise where they linked quotations in the novel to the real-life situation. This would have all been well and good if they had any idea about the context in the first place. What happened next? Seeing as a vast majority of students didn’t even know what the Holocaust was, I felt myself indulging in an argument for a moment or two in my mind, involving two thought processes. One seemed to be a young, modern teacher, with ambitions of greatness and a sharp suit, who wanted more than anything to show off an exemplary lesson which was tightly-run and tuned to perfection, with all the higher-order questions under the sun. The other part, however, was an old man, wearily trudging along to offer counsel that even he wasn’t sure made sense anymore. Nonetheless, I listened, and what I had to do then was simply stop the lesson. I had to speak. So I talked. It wasn’t a script, it wasn’t planned. It was knowledge, it was entirely IFR, it displayed clearly the gap between my knowledge and theirs; and whilst Teaching Standard number 3 was indeed being met, I was ignoring facets of other standards. It was a lecture. Had it been a formal observation, it would have been ten minutes that in no way could be seen as positive. And yet... it just had to be done.

And afterwards I distinctly felt alarmed, knowing that I even hesitated for a moment. What is being forgotten here? Are teachers being sucked into a thought process that is inherently self-defeating? How could I have possibly let students go on with their (for want of a better word) ignorance? A roomful of students who, when presented with images of Auschwitz prisoners, could only ask me what was going on, is a room that needs someone to impart knowledge. It doesn’t need Bloom’s Taxonomy. It doesn’t need Gestalt theory, or Prezi presentations. It just needed to have someone tell them about something they didn’t know about.

When a pupil asked me why it happened, I could only admit that really, the only people who knew were the Nazis themselves, and that teachers didn’t know everything. A pupil at that point said “I like that, sir. It’s nice to have a teacher who doesn’t pretend they’re better than everyone else in the room.”

Perhaps it’s only stress talking, perhaps it’s seeing teachers working until ten every evening and waking at half five the next day, perhaps it’s the over-abundance of paperwork piling up on any desk I inhabit, but I wonder where all this is leading. What began as a mediation on the lack of freedom regarding teaching poetry became a lament on the logical fallacies sometimes inherent in the over-emphasis on discouraging by-rote teaching. The focus from the teacher to the student, something I have been praised for showing evidence of, suggests an environment where the most important person in the room is being cast into the background: the teacher. Ask any student who they think the most important person in the room is, and they will tell you ‘the teacher’.

Friday, 16 November 2012

Discovery



the chick from the bt advert in a film called fanny hill

hate how this excited me as a discovery

feels like being 13 again
That realisation when you get a message from someone from a dating site who seems perfect, is incredibly pretty, and you look at the twitter she advertises and realises she spends all her tweeting time talking about people she's talking to on OKCupid.

Literally quoting conversations word for word.

And that weirdly Sacha follows her.

Birds of a feather and all that.

Is this the new romance now? Absolute feedback and publication of all attempts at authenticity? Or is it simply something defined by annoying women with 'issues'?

Or maybe I'm a mysognist. who knows?

Tuesday, 13 November 2012

Fuck

So it goes:

Lesson plan was fucked; four wasps ended up hijacking the lesson; lesson was fucked anyway; wasps just confirmed it; kids running around swatting wasps whilst I stood there shouting for attention, realising I had nothing left to say because the work was a million times too difficult and weirdly structured; so by the end even though my mentor and university tutor were observing I just felt like saying






Saturday, 10 November 2012


Characteristics of the Parenting Styles in a Narcissistic Family
The Narcissistic Family: Diagnosis and Treatment. Stephanie Donaldson-Pressman and Robert Pressman
_____ I was not allowed to have feelings that might upset my parents.
_____ As a child, I had to meet the emotional needs of the parents.
_____ I learned early on that my needs weren’t valued so stopped trying to get them met.
_____ I felt that I had to act in ways that pleased my parent(s) to avoid being abandoned.
_____ Our family had to look good to outsiders, so I was required to keep the family secrets.
_____ At times my parents' need to look good to others did help me get some positive attention.
_____The less emotional support I got from my parent(s), the more fearful I was that I’d lose it.
_____ I learned to be super responsible to please my parent(s.)
_____ I have had life-long problems making and keeping intimate relationships.
_____ In relationships, I worry about the other person finding out how defective I am.
_____I have an overwhelming need for external (outside of myself) validation.
_____ I became fragmented trying to figure out what my parent(s) wanted from me.
_____ It was dangerous for me to recognize and express my own power as a child.
_____ I had no inherent value other that what I could do for my parent(s.)
_____ I had to give up my own sense of self to survive in my family.



FUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUU

Friday, 9 November 2012

I think my therapist is a bit of a pussy. I was telling him about stuff I experienced as a kid, and he seemed to be oddly upset :P

"Age 7 I wanted to kill myself just because I messed up a race. Age 10 my mum wandered off for no reason and I thought she had gone mental. Age 12 I wished I was dead. Age 14 I started taking loads of pills then stopped. Age 18 I applied a razor to my wrists."
"That... that's really sad that you should have had to put up with that kind of thing at a young age."
"Yeah I guess."
"I can see your sadness."
"Yeah?"

At one point he said "I think in life we have to stop giving a fuck about other people" and I thought "Hmmm..."

Constant loop off self-awareness, self-deprecation, followed by a strange floaty feeling where I felt like this wasn't real and/or I was about to fall apart completely. I wonder if the 'breakthrough', if it ever were to come, would consist of me either weeping like a child or doing a Taz and running around  hitting things. There is probably a lot of repressed anger in me.

At one point I told him that my reaction to the breakup was way overboard and I said that maybe it wasn't just that I was reacting to. He started doing an interesting sort of mimed diagram of a chain, showing how everything that happens now and our reactions all stretch back to the chain of our past.

And I realised he was telling me incredibly obvious things. I hate how I just want him to give me 'the answer'.

But is there even a question?

Can't help feeling sometimes that I desire male company more than female: that for me, women are somehow lesser, or the enemy in some way... and that makes me sad. I wonder if my sister fucked me up a little. I wonder if my dad fucked me up a little. I wonder if my mum fucked me up the most. I wonder if my cat fucked me up completely. Fucking cats.

Or maybe I'm not even that fucked and I just happen to enjoy the luxury of being able to talk with someone about stuff that everyone goes around with. Maybe it literally is just the talking that helps. There is no answer, no final solution. Sprechen Macht Frei.

The Jews of the past eradicated piece by piece as the SSRI ovens burn them off. Finally you find the will to power, the psychotic absolute. Completely self-confidence: the Hitler Way. The Nazis represented the end-game of the ego. I have said this before, but still. But - part of me wonders - did the entire enterprise represent latent homosexuality? Does all evil stem from repressed sexuality?

I mean, look at Hitler's moustache. What a fag.

Wikipedia doesn't help:

Some[who?] have argued that he was asexual, whereas others[who?] dismiss these claims and believe he was heterosexual

Ernst Hanfstaengl, one of the members of Hitler's inner circle in the early years in Munich before he had gained any political power, wrote of Hitler's sexuality that "I felt Hitler was a case of a man who was neither fish, flesh nor fowl, neither fully homosexual nor fully heterosexual... I had formed the firm conviction that he was impotent, the repressed, masturbating type."






Thursday, 8 November 2012

When my dad has a cold he acts like he's got the most blocked nose ever. And then when he gets irritated it miraculously seems to clear. I'm in a bad mood and man-flu from a guy who spends his days doing nothing much doesn't really help.

Friday, 2 November 2012


Is it just me or does every single second seem to last a really long time? Like I know, on a concrete level, that I am just sitting in a room typing this and the time between the beginning of this sentence and this bit now was only two minutes in real time, but right now... time and space absolutely no longer what they were, and I know I’m feeling really weird, because it’s like, I am completely fucked.

I am not sure how I am able to type, let alone construct sentences – the sheer effort required to speak right now in unbelievable. Maybe I’m afraid of what I might say...

My hands are tingly as hell, it feels like they exist aeons away from me, and it’s kind of scary. What else is weird is that I’m actually asleep. I’m really now in this room right now. I know without looking that Abi is there, that matt is there, but they’re a million miles away. To my left is a moving image, but everything else seems to have become absolutely still.

It seems like life is made up of a frame a second – I can see one image of this film and if I shut my eyes it could last a lifetime. Every time I close my eyes, I exit. I keep juddering back, remembering that along linear space and time paths these two are following it.

Weirdly, I know I’m acting and look normal. What these two don’t know is that I know what it is to be in this state. Of course Matt knows because he’s on it. But his experience will always be separate from mine because the only method of communication – words – don’t transcribe everything. Each time I look up from the screen I return to this lifetime. My jerk is being all jerky and weird. I could actuallt type without looking f- I know im making mistakes but still.

Textures abolsutel. Mischief abundant in every frame.
Absolutel dedication to the fetishisation dream.
I can see the film in my head, like I can see the keyboard in my head when I type.
Wow its actually coming out.
Why am I able to move? Why am I able to pretend I’m normal?
How can I speak? How can I type?
I’m popping out of the world said matt, and yes,
Whereabouts am I now? Inside the words im typing. I can actually see my hands typing this as I speak.
I don’t speak. I type. But I can see on three levels
The physical –p ha my hands are doing the motion.
The other one, where I can see words actually forming on a keyboard in my head.
Fuck me I feel like I’m a million miles from my limbs.
All movement becomes heavy – time and splace are blurred.
I can see the last thing I saw, in my head
The longer I wait inside th dark the more I drift away.
Abbys laughter is wonderful.
Comedy sitdown.
My head feels like It’s on a really really long thin neck.
I am typing this from miles above.
I don’t know how I am functioning on any level.
Even to talk...


All movement absolutely accentuated.
I feel lke abby was staring at me then but she wasn’t.
Lol.
Im afraid of drifting off.
I feel likie im actually going to come away from my body.
The signals being sent from my brain to my hand are somehow functioning
Where the fuck are they travelling along?
I can see the circuits in my head, a million miles long,
Racing like tron circuitry, the vast train to nowhere.
Just keeping my eyes away is an effort.
Alice understands.
No more cakes or ink thois time, thought alice to herself.
Matt looks like an idiot child
Makes me want to laugh at him
But I know I look the same

Aw theyre quite cute, said abby
Breaking the silence
The different methods of communication here
All sound magnified – the sound of nyx and the sound of the film
Blend together into coherent narrative
I am really stoned.
Alice is so cute
So stoic
Fidgety cosmos,
Blindingly following orders from the sentries
Posised on the verge shields abrutpy raise
Glowing pink radiating
What the fuck am I dtalking about?
Trying to come up with poetry and its really bad
Cartoon figures are in my head right now, ceighties transformer kind of guys
I can hear abby talking in my head but not in a weird way.
It is bad that the two peope nhere now in the present don’tseem like the real them? that the world inside my head now is the real place?
The guitar munches on a
I have no idea what theyre talking about but it makes me smile
Closed my eyes I saw
Dragons spiralling around in beautiful circles
Spiralling in space
Keeping guard
How are they keeping up with this? How are they using language? My memory of what I saw one second ago is minute.
Lol.
I can hear ok, but I’m looking at things and theyre just not sticking anymore. Everything is smeared like butter over the saucepan of my head.
Gargantuan effort to re-establish contact with anything or anything. And yet so easy. Svankmeyer focus on textures affirms a basis of everything being the same, there is no textures, there are no senses. I know I am touching these keyboard but I cant feel anything. I literally cant feel anything.
Its like my body is operating, a million workers all functioning in this city below the clouds. I am inside the words here, I know I am generating them, they are being born, not written, they had to be written, its being fed into me, I can hear words spoken in abby’s voice, I can hear words spoken in matt’s voice,
For a moment or two I grasp the insanity of this – I now for a fact I am sitting there in reality typing words, but I feel like I’m inside the jelly of otherness – that every moment there is a jusdgement, a being weighed up, a vast importance in the moment.
The film is loud and jarring but soft. Everything is soft, buttery, without touch, meaningless. The cotton fluff of reality where moments blend, where we slip in and out of other universes. Where time is folded, where reality decides in fits to land.
When I stop typing they look at me, they’re wondering what the fuck I’m typing.
I know matt is falling asleep ,but I feel like I am asleep.
I am asleep. I am most definitely not awake.
I am actually in a gigant white room
Gigantic.
The space between me and this keyboard, the space between
This, what I’m looking at, is not real.
Everything, everything is warped, “twisted” in matt’s words
It’s like the forest temple
I forget everything. I forget I’m even typing. I’m just inside a different place now. Dimensions, having to realise them
Its like pure cubism in a nutshell, everything shifts, everything
“time” in matt’s case
Space in mine
Oh man that was just beautiful


Govolchin is the word for rabbit in Czech
I can udnerstandd her even from space
Open eye visions!
My eyes are open but I am inside the floaty space
Spirallograms floating and clashing together
Sweeps across genetly like gulls wrings
I cam on a beach
Everything is flying
Everything is light
Everything Is whites
Pink candy floss
The meaningless murk of this absolute confusion
Is fine
The split in space and the split in time
Don’t matter so much when you had nothing to lose

Communication is impossible
“My hand seems animated”
Everything seems important
Every said seems to be said about seven times
“anyone else getting those weird time loops?”
Did he say that in the present or in the past? Two minutes ago sure
Two realities
Ago
A million realities ago. Time is so weird right now
Space is struggling to match up with it
All texture is beautiful

Monday, 29 October 2012

that fucking feel

Drunk - got Mahler's Third final movement on.

Find myself beginning to type the URL of ex's tumblr...

Stop myself from doing so.

Get a single manly tear because I realise I've moved on but don't quite realise it yet.

Life can be sad. But it is life that is sad. Not me.

Like Syra. We will never know why.

We will never know why.

But it's so long ago now it doesn't really matter, and passes into legend, into myth, into dream.

Into narrative.

Mfw I'm writing a mfw story but can't be arsed to add arrows.

Last night

I had the two recurring dreams that I haven't had for a while but when I do have them it's usually not a good sign...

1. I'm alone in the house. Poppy starts growling, and I see another cat as entered the house. I have to protect Poppy but I can't get it because I'm moving really slowly.

2. Driving insanely fast down roads in some foreign place and I can't brake - but in this dream, there's a distinct moment where I go "why not just crash this time?" and I actually find myself split into two - the one who is trying to crash it, and the one who's trying to steer it. It got to the point where I was actually 'playing' myself as a third person character.

At one utterly random point I was inside some strange complex place driving around on a motorbike, and entering a weird place with FIFA 13 on the front. 'I' managed to steer the 'me' character out of there before I got arrested...

Wtf man that was some horrid shit. Kind of horrid thing viewing yourself from afar

Sunday, 28 October 2012

Should probably get my prescription from the doctor. Been spending last four days without them because either a) I'm not in need of anything or b) it's pointless because I'm already dead and nothing can change me

probably b. who knows.

i'm really fucking alone and i deserve to be because i'm a terrible cunt who pretends to be shy in order to make up for the fact that actually all i am capable of doing is sneering at anyone who manages to be happy in any way.

i'm a leech. not even man enough to exit. would do everyone a favour. who the fuck am i kidding pretending to be a fucking teacher, a normal person, when i can barely face people anymore? when all i want to do is be cuddled like some little kid and not have to think about bullshit problems that don't even

fuck just go to sleep you arse. sleep alone. wake alone. be alone. you're dead. so just live.


Friday, 26 October 2012

So Yeah

Caveman notions piling through the brain. Echoes of grievances now lost in black hole memory, sucked into the subconscious and spewed out through barely-disguised gestures. Told today that I don't realise that when I read kids' work, I smile at the good bits and wince at the bad.

Positive thinking: she said deadpan the students in a bottom set responded well to me. She also said deadpan how one kid's mum in that class killed herself from a heroin overdose and everyone in his family is addicted to heroin. Also said deadpan that standing up instead of sitting down would help me although I did really well to keep them quiet whilst sitting anyway. Also said deadpan that she dreams of being raped by

Jimmy Saville

or JS to his friends, but a man like him never really had friends, only stalwart admirers, designed to help propagate the false image he wrapped around himself. The smoked cigar: the symbol of a man expressing to society that he has used his cock in many ways, and that nobody could fucking do anything about it. A man who was an ogre, a narcissist, who genuinely seemed to think he was entitled to feel up kids because he fancied them and it was no-one's right to deny him that pleasure. People as objects. How can a man who fixed it for so many be such a monster? When remembering that programme, I was aware of viewing him as a caricature, a man playing a role, a sort of facilitator, brandishing a slightly wacky old granddad image that made him seem endearing. When watching Louis Theroux and realising that this persona was actually how he lived his life, I became aware of a disturbing feeling that he was a completely false being. All that cigar and 'now then' stuff wasn't a projected clown, a Bruce Forsythian adherence to expected values created by a blanket of celebrity, but was actually him. He was not real: he was entirely this artifice. Imagine Forsyth actually coming home and greeting his family with 'Nice to see you, to see you nice' every day for the past forty years. All of a sudden it would make you wonder about how such a man must view those around him. Imagining that creep coming up next to you while you lay in a hospital bed, murmuring 'now then now then' as he undid your fly, grinning all the while.

He actually didn't see what he was doing as being abuse. Like anyone indulging in acts that transcend the borders of acceptability, there is always that awareness of others. Presumably he went to bed at night saying to himself that he couldn't be wrong because he didn't rape them. Then after he raped them he said to himself he couldn't be wrong because they secretly wanted it. You can safely say he's a bit of a

Twat

Greg "The Potato Peeler" danced avidly about the sycamore tree, being sick a bit more, spewing up not only last night's curry, but somehow the curry he would have tomorrow. Biological time travel meant he was all too susceptible to suffering a million ailments linked to events that ended up either happening, not happening, or dishappening in the future. So today he shat twice, and it was presumably the second shit that was the one from the future, because he didn't shit the next day, which meant he had therefore stolen the second shit from tomorrow. Similarly, he took an extra breath, and then the next day he held his breath, which meant that he had stolen tomorrow's breath. Sometimes, though, time would fold in on itself and he would not only do things in the present, but also in the past and the future, such as exist. This meant that, for him, space and time didn't really mean anything and that spacetime was like a giant piece of toilet paper, and that God was the one taking a shit: sometimes it folds, sometimes it rolls, but it always ends up going down into a black hole and all sorts of

Shit happens

Both wore make-up designed to accentuate the delicacy of their features. Gymnastically sprinting across crooked lines of cable, both men fractured a bone in their tibia and breaking it in half, renaming them both tib as a result. And what of the ia? It went on to pursue a career.



Wednesday, 24 October 2012

Thoughts During a Random Wank

There are two pieces of pussy you get in your life: your first and your last.
- Richard Pryor

Women are basically louder than men in bed. For all twenty or so times that I've got laid, I can safely say that it's basically been like having a running commentary going on in your ear, whilst trying to make sure you don't also have a running cummentary going on down below.

Curiously enough, the only time I ever found myself being audible was when I was getting my cock sucked for literally three hours, on and off. Never before or since have I experienced such constant pleasure: compared to the high-level moment of male orgasm, this literally blew it out the water, being as it was three hours of constant medium-level pleasure that, when built up over such a length of time, becomes something so insanely good that you just forget everything, even the fact that by this point I couldn't stand the woman who was doing it to me.

Only that time did I accept that I just had to escape myself and submit to the fact that the person doing this to me had actually rendered me immobile with what they were doing. And that was the point I realised that this is part of why women are louder: they are letting you know that at this moment, they trust you so much that they are allowing you not only control over their body, but also their mind. If a woman is loud and not faking it, she is not thinking about anything else other than the pleasure you are giving. And, although it may be a hunch, the female experience of good sex is far far better than the male experience of good sex, and the female experience of bad sex is far far worse than the male experience of bad sex. Point being that when it is good, it is very good and this is why there is noise. Sure, this is obvious, but at the same time, it's kind of not.

Inevitably I am currently dwelling on notions of penetration and the difference between that and the penetrator, due to the strange realisation that whenever I wipe my arse, I experience a gazillion different pleasure/pain sensations from my rear end, which rocket through my entire body, causing my legs literally to give way. Honestly, if I didn't know that it was bad for me, scratching for half an hour like that would rank amongst the most pleasurable experiences I've had. Constant medium level - but the added novelty of experiencing something from inside as opposed to outside. The feeling of arse penetration - albeit from something as meaningless as a ball of tissue soaked in cold water - gives a different sense of pleasure from penetrating something. To enter a moist cunt feels like coming home: sort of cosy, and gratifying in itself. You are welcomed as a conqueror of the day to take the spoils at night. But to experience something invasive is surprising in itself, almost offensive; but the sudden jolt of pleasure adds to the interesting duality of autobuggery arsemonged shitgasm fuckstainery.

bored

sfdsfdsf

Hate how whenever there's a serious television item about Jimmy Saville raping someone he's always pictured doing something vaguely wacky, which just makes him look like the ultimate posthumous troll

Saville Troll - PROBLEM?

Monday, 22 October 2012

Alma Martyr

1 in 12 young people in the UK self-harm. My worry is about what the other 11 are doing.
- Harold Tronnish

A teenager sits in a room alone. They apply a razor to their arm, enjoying the pinch as the skin is punctured. Blood running down the arm provides visual stimulus. The syrupy drops trail down drooping fingers, and find their final resting place on the ivory bath side. Metallic tinge to the air, new ozone necessary when the heat is this intense. Now there is silence. Now there is reflection, and purity, and all is condensed. This single act: the only act left. The life led, its stresses and chaos, has soaked into the skin; noise runs through the veins, echoing in the ears, pulsing through the brain, throbbing against the skull. But now it runs out. Gates of heaven open and out spill the throngs, the sheep, the cackling masses devised of hostility and plots. Down the drain they flow. Now the body is clean. Now the future can be written once more. The battery has been changed, the mechanism reset.

Next day comes and the dirt of days clog up the pores once more. The cycle starts again. I shall never be clean, not truly. Knowing this makes me want to cut even more. So I do. Nobody bothers to ask me to roll up my sleeves and show them my scars. My parents don't because they assume I wouldn't do anything like that. Teachers don't because they know it's weird. But, even if they did see the scars, and asked me about them, I would refuse to speak - because it's my secret, my coping strategy, and it's not hurting anyone except me; and, in this world, I'd rather hurt myself than anyone else. Confronting me about it makes me feel put upon, and singled out. Offering sympathy makes me feel offended because I'm not looking for your sympathy. Don't insult me with your platitudes. I know what I'm doing. I'm in control. You don't understand.

You show me the scars on your arms. I gawp. Of all people, why would you do it? You aren't going through the same things I am. What a stupid thing for you to do. You tell me you might do it later on tonight, and I ask you not to. It doesn't make sense for you to be doing it. You're alive, and well, and I am dead, and problematic. Like my music and my books, cutting belongs to me, and for you to enter into that world disrupts it and makes me want to push you away. But at the same time I really want you to keep trying. Ignore the outer layer. See the part of me I've hidden away, the part of me I don't even think I know. I'm too young to cope with all of this. Take me out of myself. Listen to my confession; do not comment, and do not judge.

Take these words, for they are my blood.

Sunday, 21 October 2012




This is what she's done to me. I look like a stoner, my eyes are so red.

And I look balder than I thought I was.
Time has stopped, space has stopped, and it feels like I no longer exist. I am utterly alone in space, typing into an empty vast void. Where once was caring and emotion, there is only dead silence. I am floating in a sea of grey meaninglessness where nobody and nothing matters.

This is how it is to live in Barnsley.

This is somehow beautiful but I don't know why

I'm crying because... she was one of my favourite people I'd ever met.

I just want one more day with her. Just to talk to someone who seemed to get me.

But anyone who gives someone the silent treatment for no reason whatsoever is just too mean. It would have to be a REALLY good reason for me to be OK with it but I can't for the life of me think of any bar the possibility that she still has feelings for me but I really doubt that. And even if that were true, why on earth would that be the way of dealing with it? "I'm going to be mean as hell to you and not talk to you anymore because you still mean something to me." Wtf.

Instead I think she just decided to cut me off, which would have been bad enough anyway but is somehow unbearably painful and upsetting considering she had said she really missed me too and wanted to be friends a week ago. What am I missing here? Maybe I'm overreacting. Maybe friends spend their time ignoring messages from each other. Especially ones who are just trying to reconcile after a hard time not talking for months. Yeah. That's how normal people react. That's how you build bridges.

Goddamn. I really need to see you guys. I really need to remember that the people from uni like me. And that I'm a good teacher.

And that for the past three months I've been a Civ addict who has barely left the house.

I would kill myself, but I would never know how this horror story ends.

She posts this on her tumblr yesterday, a reblog from someone else.


 I DO BELIEVE THAT YOU CAN FEEL YOUR HEART BREAK.

When your throat tightens and your pulse quickens. You feel like you’re going to be sick to your stomach. The tears build up but they just won’t fall. When you bite your lip just to feel the pain somewhere else. It’s breaking.

What? Seriously, what the fuck? If she's 'in love' with someone new, at least then she could have the decency to tell me and explain that this is why she can't talk to me anymore. Instead, no. Just cut me off a moment after I'd got some hope that she still cared.

Her heart is not broken. Who would have broken her heart? Certainly not me. How could I? All I've been doing is telling her I need her. My heart has been ripped to absolute shreds and, as much as I'm over being out with her, a heart can also be seriously wounded by friends.

My biggest fear is? That you'll stop caring about me. And this is the kind of shit I need to talk to my therapist about because it means I'm relying on you to make me feel alive. I don't know why.

Maybe I'm just being a typical paranoid thinking everything she writes like that is about me. She's cut me off, and that's all I need to know. I am banished, and there is no rhyme or reason to it.

This is what goes on in my head... every fucking day... the moment I wake up. The only time it stopped was during uni when I could talk to other people and feel sane. Now, that Elysium is gone and she is back.

Or maybe literally just trying to reach out to her meant I invested so much emotionally again, in ways I hadn't for a couple of months, that I got burned again. I felt hope. I felt like she actually felt human feelings like I did, that she really did miss me because she said so.



Who, if they miss someone, then proceed not to talk to them? Someone who is beyond comprehension, who is a borderline waif with no thought for anyone they leave behind because they have such a tunnel vision view of everyone and everything. In those fleeting instances where they display signs that they care, they might see the light for a moment and comprehend that other people matter too. But then, for whatever reason, those moments pass and the banishment begins with no sense of empathy or caring other than their own, eternally tortured souls that, were they given all the love in all the world, would never ever manage to feel like they were loved.

And anyway, all that's said and done, maybe I did find her queer thing and extroversion a little much to take. And it's like, I get it. You like Sarah Brightman. You want to fuck her. I get it. You're bisexual. Good for you. And yeah, maybe even some of her friends were kind of irritating.

To be honest... wtf am I actually missing out on? I was never loved, so I'm not missing love. Friendship? I don't think she ever really felt like she cared about me. She only cared about a possible version of me. The constant pressure to match up to her expectations was actually kind of stressful. The feeling of being tested. Maybe I was the same for her without realising I was. Who knows.

If she wants to be a friend she has to be a friend. This see-saw of power and control is nothing like what friends do. I don't know what the fuck it is.
Well I attempted another call and she didn't answer so I've deleted her number from my phone.


Felt nice feeling like everything was normal for a while. Now I'm back to square one and I don't know why.


Now I'm wishing I'd never bothered.


I feel unwell.

Saturday, 20 October 2012

Fucking horrible mean silent but deadly noxious poison, depart my head at once!
Stupid ex appearing in my stupid dreams again. Left a stupid message on her stupid mobile which, whilst not rude or angry, was hopefully assertive enough in getting across the message that if she doesn't feel like talking for whatever reason, it would be helpful to let the other party know.

Nobody in their right mind treats anyone the way she treated me. I'm starting to realise that. I'm not used to taking this position that something isn't my fault, because things usually are. It's actually a strange gear shift for me and I'm not sure if I like it.

This blog has become a paean to self-pity.

Friday, 19 October 2012

Swear Down Bruv

Dave was not normally a betting man. It was only when Cecil, his landlord, stopped by to demand last month's, next month's, and this month's rent, that Dave realised he would have to resort to desperate measures. He grabbed a measuring tape and began to measure Cecil's height whilst eating cow pie. Inevitably, this did not go down well, because the mechanism of the tape seemed to have malfunctioned after a beaver's teeth became lodged within its crevices one day when it was bored and had decided not only to bite down on some measuring tape apparatus, but come to England over a ferry, find his way to Gloucester, find Dave's house, and set up shop within his sink. The only customers were the mice under the kitchen sink who traded with the beaver for cheese and ham and biscuits and occasionally bleach just to fuck with Dave when he was looking for bleach.

Cecil was a man who thought he was a loner but he had an accidental wife. Justine was her name, and in her spare time she liked to look at spare tyres and ponder the gap between when a tyre becomes spare and when it doesn't. In those millimoments between the tyre being off and being on, did it undergo a spiritual experience? Were we, she would ask Cecil of an evening, all wandering around being spare tyres, or are we all gripping the road of reality whilst carrying the weight of the car of morality? Cecil, being the uncivilised gentleman he was, would grab a slice of Dr. Pepper from the frozen fridge and jump up and down on the bed as some sort of attempt to arouse her. For some reason that Cecil could never fathom - simply because he had never attempted to fathom  it - Justine had a fetish for jumping on beds and so would instantly shriek in delight and join in the jumping on the bed game. Sex, needless to say, was fairly challenging under the circumstances, but eventually they managed to get there sooner or later. But, during one particularly bouncy session, the floor gave way, exposing the dusty jawline of the house's skeleton, where surprised spiders and vampiric woodlice crawled away from their heads as they gazed around them at the chaos and rubble. The ceiling was now made up of a hole, and for a brief second they were as blank and newborn as victims of an absolute disaster such as the Troglodyte Fiasco of a few years ago when a local unicorn sold his family hen to a captain of badgers who hassled and bought loads of fish but Ryman's in the end had to sell it all off to a conglomerate; the 'con' part of the glomerate should have been a sign for all concerned, for the conglomerate scandled everybody out of a Benylin saturate worth over billions of dollars in expected tax-free ridiculous.

So Dave was shorn of cash and had only one day to pay it off. He thought about selling off parts of his body, and so shaved all of his hair bar the eyebrows, before wandering the streets of Electron offering people his hair. To his mild surprise, a man riding atop a horse punched him, but to his even milder surprise, the horse offered Dave a roundhouse kick to the gonads. Thankfully the horse ran out of KarateKredit an inch before it took his head off, and them went back to gallumphing and hallumphing and chasing ante-popes.

Antelopes, pantyhose, Soho hoes and a bottle of candy floss were all items that Dave attempted to procure, for reasons that even Dave could not understand. So he went to the betting shop, a place he had never before ventured into, bar the time he ventured into it but he didn't count that time because he was only two and hadn't learned how to. His father, a mixed machine guru, painted abstract potions of nicotine wastrels sprawled lackadaisically out on the suburban slums, ennui mixed with dosages of chargrilled arsonthoughts raging through the solar plexii of a million disaffected youths whose faces boiled with pustule hatred and pollen riches, scattered and wasted up the noses of the fortunate who revel in their pointillism and banishment lectures from the family trees of successive tyrants whose brows were as furrowed as their thighs were haughty.

Wounded from his rejection, Dave attempted to clone himself so that he could hide, but that technology didn't exist, so he wondered why he was feeling so low when in fact the bookkeeper was eyeing him with a gaze he usually reserved for coffee beans.
"I see you're a new customer," said the man as Dave approached.
"I see you're an Irishman," replied Dave.
"Irish through."
"And through?"
"No, just through. Failed the second test. Still manage to pass for Irish most days. Occasionally I'll wake up and I'll be from Japan, but those days are rare."
"No."
"Damnit. You could tell. It's the Irish days that are rare, I tell you. Sometimes I can't even make it a day. There'll be a sudden moment where I change into a Japanese person."
"Will that happen now, do you think?"
"No. I've packed my Godzilla Gum. It helps prevent Japanese people."
"Prevents them doing what?"
"Being Japanese."
"I'd like to place a bet."
"What - on me turning Japanese?"
"No. I'd like to place a bet that the Queen will die in the next week."
"Can't do that," said the bookie.
Dave grabbed the man's gum just as he was slo-mo putting it to his mouth. Dave then ate it and found that he suddenly felt 100% less Japanese that he did before. Curiously, this absence served to inform him that he was, in fact, one two-hundredth Japanese. But the absence was not particularly irking. It was the man in front of him that was the issue.
"I think I'm turning Japanese," said the Irishman. "I like me a pint of Guinness - it's grand you see, being from Tokyo - we serve the best sushi this side of the Clachten river down south in a land where nobody goes because they haven't heard of it you see - during the famine a million tonnes of potatoes were stolen by the foreign devils, who bring their nuclear bombs and try to destroy our culture."
"What did you do to stop the famine?"
"We found nuclear bombs. We bomb them. Americans come up to me, and I say, 'You want million dollar? Fuck you! Here's bomb!' and I drop bomb on head. I tell you, the craic that day was fucking hilarious. Old Pete McGovern - you know the guy, long hair, shaggy beard, tends to repeat the word 'carrot' a lot, unless he's drunk, in which case he'll tell you the funniest fucking stories about the time that he and I went drinking - of course, I can't remember a damn thing after I've had twenty Guinnesses but Pete, he's fine after going to see a horror film where a girl character with long brown hair over her face does something scary, and I tell you mate, nothing's funnier than tentacle rape on a Friday night in a Dublin pub. I got twelve black eyes in one evening, and that was just from talking to Dennis O' Donahue, a man with the ability to utter the word 'fuck' without opening his mouth. All he does is shut his eyes and the word just comes out of him. Swear blind."
"So can I place this bet or not," said Dave, growing impatient, like a Hula Hoop at the bottom of a packet waiting to be glamourised  by having a few seconds placed onto the end of a finger of a discerning school child whose name may or may not be Isabella.
"You want place bet? Sure, you place bet."
"How much?"
"Two."
"No. Not two. Four. Four thousand."
"You place four thousand bet? Jaysus, you're a pretty confident fella, aren't you? Will you look at that, placing your bet there. What are the odds of that?"
"You tell me. You're the bookie."
"I meant the odds of you placing that bet, not the odds of the bet itself."
"Want to bet on it?"
"Sure. I'll bet you a pound."
"I'll bet you two pounds."
"You win."
And that is how betting works.

Dave, clean fresh from the bookies despite a bleeding ear and a disturbed groin, had placed his bet on the Queen dying within the next week. A four thousand pound bet, for reasons even he couldn't ascertain, although it was along the lines of he borrowed the money from his dad. Even though he could have just borrowed enough money to pay his landlord and then owe his dad. But that's not really important anymore. What's really important is that he placed a bet on the Queen dying within the next week and if he lost, then bad shit would happen. Like, there were premonitions already. Walking the streets of London, he began to notice a shift in the atmosphere. Troubling pollution arose in and around him. A sudden fart arose, and he realised that fart was London. Was it any wonder that Jarobe N'duff wrote in 945, "Luden bei ploone ang woorseten cum angebot athlaesten"? All was hellish. All was waterstoned and starbucked. It was time to make that bet count because the writer of this was getting tired.

Dave

actually I cba

tl;dr man places bet on queen dying then kills the queen and goes to kill for life but is nonetheless pleased he won the money