Friday, March 30, 2007
One of the perils of singledom however is that there are ladies (and I apologise to those with genuine intent and a kind heart) who can sniff out a single man from a mile away. And play them. This is not a note of bitterness. On the contrary. An observation. From experience, the moment I put my "I'm available" sign up, I had a couple of friends who overnight became from nice mate, to flirty mate. Nice try girls. Its what some people call "the Game". My friend Pickle educated me about the rules of "The Game". Intriguing as it may be and indeed Pickle is quite experienced in that field, I find myself a little too old to play "The Game". No. Not too old. I just get bored very quickly. I think most blokes of my age do. Yes, I did ask like minded fellows. Its all the more sad watching ladies play "The Game". Perhaps in my yoof, I would have said differently but life is too short to piss around.
Last night in the local watering hole was not where I intended to be. Fresh out of snotville (bad cold) looking particularly dishevelled, I had no intention of "going out on the pull". Yet the powers that be said otherwise and so I was fighting them off at the gates. No. I lie. Not quite. But success was for the taking. Alas, twas a school night.
There was a lady who Recess Monkey introduced me to a while ago, a Persian princess no less. A lady with mystical talents for catching the eye of almost all the men (and some women) in the room last night. Yet somehow I couldn't help but think (and with the utmost respect) that this seemed a common occurance to the lady. I must admit, I am no picture myself but when everyone knows that he/she knows that he/she is attracting attention, it somehow seems off putting. A drunken survey confirmed that. Blokes aren't into women who think they are all that. A few mates and I stumbled into a bar full of city folk where the guys waved the readies and the girls the boobs. The girls didn't find the merchant bankers particularly attractive (probably due to the fact they were shit faced on coke and too much money) and the boys didn't find the ladies attractive due to their taste in tacky dresses and cheap champagne. I thought the days of meat markets were over. Clearly not. Indeed, our relatively working class attitude seemed more attractive than ever and some success was achieved. Then it occurred to me, this really is about attitude. One mans tart is another mans princess. Or vice versa.
To my recently made single friend. Just a word. Enjoy singledom, but be wary of players. My knee jerk reaction to becoming single was as obvious as day. Get laid, get laid, and get laid some more. Yeah cool, just make sure its with someone you can look in the eye the next day. And I know it sounds a little sappy, but there is nothing less satisfying than jumping into the sack just fresh out of a relationship. It doesn't take you anywhere. A five knuckle shuffle is cheaper, more satisfying, and less guilt ridden.
Note to the Persian beauty: The lads and I all agree that you really are.........
Wednesday, March 28, 2007
Whilst on the road to recovery from a particularly nasty cold I pondered the meaning of "The Local". This is in reference to ones local drinking establishment. The pub. In my case, quite reluctantly is the Sports and Social. For many years it has courted controversy, you know the kind I mean, sex, drugs and rock and roll. Heavy boozing until the early hours once upon a time was common. Besides all of that, not a bad place to drink. Not great for the singletons amongst us until Thursday/Friday night where some of parliament's finest female researchers and pals congregate in what most describe as an old man's pub. In fact for most of the week it is very much that. An old mans pub.
This got me thinking. What constitutes a local pub. What are the ingredients to make a pub a local. So recalling some of the conversations I've had over the past few years with everyone from my Dad to friends who have established themselves in certain pubs for a number of years I came up with a list of what makes a local, a local.
- Dimly lit atmosphere
- Smoke hovering permanently at approximately five feet above the ground
- Juke box with the most modern music around the late eighties
- A knarly old bloke with no teeth who is already in the pub before opening time
- Ornaments on the walls of things that nobody can squarely identify but look old
- Worn out carpet usually a patterned red, but can't really make out as it is too dirty
- Mens toilet on the ground floor and womens toilet upstairs
- Pub food
- Foreign student working behind the bar hardened by regular abuse from the mid afternoon drunkard
- The mid afternoon drunkard
- Ales served that you've never heard of before and nor have the regulars
- Toilet door that doesn't lock properly
- Worn out darts board
- Bunch of mates you only ever see in the pub
- Musty, damp smell of cigarettes and spilt beer
These are some of the things that make a local pub. Perhaps what I've listed desccribes a fantasy local pub. No actually a stereo-typical local pub.
Is there such a bad thing as a local pub when some of the more modern outfits seem more like hospital wards or hotel foyers? Don't know. All I know, is if you feel welcomed, happy to spend a night in one place without getting hassled, get pissed that night and no-one bats an eye lid the next morning about your shameful antics the night before, then its good enough for me. Rock and Roll!!
Tuesday, March 27, 2007
Lets look a lttle closer to home though. There are people who are expert at what they do for a living. The ability probably comes naturally to them to a point where its second nature to them. This tends to breed complacency. Which breeds the desire to to something stimulating. I know a great many intelligent people who spend there time after work seeking there thrills in one way or another. Take one example. Getting hammered every night and waking up the next morning with an almighty hangover and still doing there job as expertly as though they were sober. Then there are the people that hoover up huge quantities of Columbian marching powder and do exactly the same. People who have sex with different people every night. There are other people that play sports or read or do group activties. For the majority of people I know it just doesn't quite cut it though. What is stimulation? What is thrill seeking? The science bit makes these things explainable but I for one do not wish to approach this subject from that angle. It takes all the fun out of it.
Does anyone remember the buzz out of getting drunk or high for the first time? Yes most probably it felt nauseous. After which it gets better and better and better. People who relax by taking drugs or drinking are regular normal individuals that get a thrill in a different way to other folk who prefer to watch TV or read a book. What I'm particularly fascinated by is why some people push the boundaries of getting high to an extent that it becomes dangerous. Is it about seeking ones limitation? I think its a little more simpler than that. Whether its doing drugs or drinking lots it really points to something else. Hands up who enjoys their job? A few people here and there. I raise my hand as I have a fulfilling job. Who thinks a job is an obligation? The majority of people will raise their hands to that. The trouble with working is that the majority of peoples lives are spent in a constrained environment without much ability to express ones self. Some people do feel shackled. How many people can't wait for the end of Friday to go out and have some fun? Again loads of people. Why? Because people see it as a reward and go out and get hammered to the point that the precious weekend that they had is spent recovering from Friday. What if those rewards are given during the working day and so there is less of a need to get mashed at the end of the day? Am I suggesting that people take a quick line here and there? Or a few pints every couple of hours? No. Rewards come in different forms. Its really up to people to find them out. That in itself could be reward enough.
Why do I mention all this? I work for an organisation where the drinking culture is massive. The majority of people I know drink at my local drinking establishment day in and day out. All social activities centre around one place. There is no such thing as a lunch time drink. Its a "anytime you like" drink. People have been reprimanded for drinking all day before but it never changes the habit. Personally I think it is a shame this happens. Does anyone do anything about it? No.
Going for a drink doesn't have that same sense of occassion in that place anymore. Celebrating a birthday or something like that would have made no difference. Except that those people who normally don't buy rounds would.
I used to have a friend of mine who used to go mad on E' s and coke every Friday night. Working out a quick calcuation that amounted to about one hundred and fifty quid for a night, well a night and day. That's a lot of drugs. I have no problem with the kind of drugs that were taken, it was the quantity. That was too much. Interestingly though this person now lives a relatively Buddhist life. Healthy eating, no smoking, drinking once a month, goes cycling out in the country etc. What fascinates me is what was that trigger that made them stop such a life style and replace it with one apparently less stimulating? I'll have to ask that question one day.
I know of a person who is retiring soon and I must admit it got me thinking. What will I do if I get to that age? Spend my days in the local boozer from dawn till dusk? Or will I use my time wisely? More importantly, do I have to wait that long to make that decision? I do wonder sometimes how much people of my age/generation spend on things that only give us a quick fix and a hangover.
Seeking thrills for an otherwise unstimulating life.....
For months this DVD sits on the shelf and if it had a voice would constantly be shouting "why the f*ck did you buy me?", "Watch me! watch me pleeeaaaaaseee!".
The only trouble I have now is which one out of five "dust gathering" DVD's should I watch?
The BBC production of Rome beckons me....
"I understand Mr 2Darts but this finan.." (Click). I put the phone down. What is wrong with these people ?
Friday, March 23, 2007
I for one don't think there is such a thing as predicting the future. Educated guesses; a more likely effort at seeing the future. No seriously, predicting the future has always been a fascinating subject. Some of the most famous people in the world have believed in seeing the future or seeking guidance from such prophets. Genghis Khan, Adolf Hitler, Boadica, Queen Victoria........King Arthur. What? you're thinking that Arthur was a made up character aren't you? That point I'll argue another time but for now, all I have to say is, Merlin. Snow White's wicked witch. Hang on a minute, most of the listed also happen to be murderous dictators too!
Seeing the future is very much a mystical ability and science aims to turn this into something tangible. Science is already trying to disprove the existence of God. I for one couldn't care less. The idea of a higher being to me is meaningless as I've always believed that God is within you. You can be your own best friend or your worst enemy. God and religion are a way to shrug off responsibility for ones own actions. Why do people pray to god and ask for help in the worst moments of time? I'm not going to travel down this road for this particular article as I don't wish to come across as being argumentative. Everyone is entitled to their beliefs. I shall continue this at a later date minus the hangover.
Science, mathematic, the universal language can eventually prove that predicting the future is possible spoiling the magical idea of "seeing the future".
...for fear of talking just a load of bollocks, I shall stop for now and continue later.....
Here is the bit I found amusing.
"A rare squirrel monkey was stolen from his cage by a group of friends visiting Chessington World of Adventures."
Whose friends? The monkey's friends? Or was it the Koala gang on a hit gone wrong? Perhaps the monkey hadn't paid his gambling debt so someone sent the boy's around for a lesson...
The team pub crawl got under way late afternoon. Starting with a merry band of five, which culminated in half of the department cramming themselves into a small bar. I think I managed pint five before heading off home. Except I didn't. A convinient phone call from a friend in the Sports and Social, (considered to be my local drinking establishment) led me to join a merry band of friends on quiz night. Strangely the rest of the night from there on in became a little hazy.
Kebab, and home. Yes, yes, my voluntary ban on kebabs has been lifted. And what a kebab. Seven quid's worth of juicy chicken and lamb flesh.
Incidentally, the lift started working after jumping up and down like a lunatic.
Thursday, March 15, 2007
I compare the experience with that of picking out a copy of Loaded magasine from my local paper and buying it. It doesn't feel right for a thirty two year old to do. Not only that, it is a little embarrassing. Yes I'm still drawing parallels with kebabs. At the kebab shop I was surrounded by young early twenty year olds out from the pub, hammered out their skulls on shandy doing exactly what I used to do at that age. Incidentally the same age group that buy Loaded magasine. Oh dear. Time to grow up Two Darts and settle for a posh turkish restaurant instead.
Oh, one final thing. A note to one irritated reader. I've made it clear in the past about who and what I written about in previous articles. The identity of who I write about is tastefully hidden. Its funny how all of the readership of this blog don't know of these people. If you don't like what you read then don't read it. Simple. This blog is for public consumption but also in some ways a journal of ones self. I occasionally read back some old entries and I see how I've changed. Its quite interesting to see how opinions change or don't. I am fortunate not to attract too much media attention with my blog unlike Recess Monkey who recently recieved compliments for his accidental reporting of the demise of Margaret Thatcher as well as plenty of threats.
On a serious note about climate change and other worldly looming disasters, where has the fun gone out of life. I mean, really. Where have the fun times gone? Is this a privelage that only children have now? The doom mongers will have you know about what could happen to the planet in a mere 43 years. It looks bad. Really bad. They say that if we don't reduce carbon output that disasterous consequences are at our door step. A friend of mine mentioned last night that big carbon dioxide emitters like China, India and the US are causing a lot of damage. China and India are still considered developing nations and have huge populations to support. The US.....well the US is just plain greedy and ignorant. I read about two of the largest US car manufacturers complaining that a four percent increase in fuel efficiency is far too expensive a target to meet! At what cost? What have they been doing all this time while european and japanese car manufacturers have been producing fuel efficient vehicles for quite some time. At a time where people are more aware of global issues more than ever, isn't it time we had some influence over greedy nations and greedy companies? My love of driving is something of the past. I hope that with what I do to help reduce global warming will keep my conscience a little more clear than those that do absolutely nothing.
Friday, March 02, 2007
Oh finally, the classic for internet dating. Whilst sifting through more ladies, I came across a picture of a woman who lived just around the corner from me, had all the attributes that I was looking for in a lady, and looked a spitting image of Helena Christensen. Wow. Too good to be true? Yep. It was a picture of H.C. Probably the reality of it? A moose. Not just any moose, probably a dungeree wearing, feminist, border line lesbian, bi-curious, hardline communist just waiting for someone stupid enough to arrange a date, for her to then shout and scream at the poor soul for being so shallow and that beauty is only skin deep. Yeah. Yeah. Come on love, face it, it helps to look a little attractive. Just a second, is there a copyright liability for using someone elses face ? Mis-leading? Could I get my money back if she wasn't the real deal? Defamation of character? This dating stuff is way too complicated sometimes.
Things spiced up a little with the presence of Lembit Opik, oh and I almost forgot, and his partner. Damn. What's her name? What a cheek(y) I can't remember her name. Gabriella something or other. Ok. One Cheek of the Cheeky Girls. How did he do it? I must say, she is indeed a very attractive woman. She wasn't immediately recognisable, but noticing Lembit with a lovely lady, and putting two and two together (pre-ninth pint adds up to four) it could only have been the aforementioned lady.
Probably one of the most disappointing moments of the night, and I largely blame myself for not been as sharp as I normally am, was the moment my mate Recess Monkey introduced me to an amazingly attractive lady. No. Not the other half of the Cheeky Girls but a very attractive lady indeed. I woke up this morning a little disappointed for missing the chance to shine. Brain clearly not in gear.
Even more annoying that I hadn't managed to avoid my local kebab shop last night either. I woke up this morning thinking that kebabs had taken over the planet until I realised that one of two things happened. Either my cats had got fed up of waiting for dinner and decided to open up a kebab restaurant or that as I had no feeling on my face that I did not know where my mouth was, I took the scatter gun approach to eating. Some parts of the food must have been on target as the familiar morning after, whoops I've eaten a kebab taste made itself familiar. Looking at the aftermath of the battle of kebab, it was a bloody battle and a devastating scene.