Saturday, 30 October 2010

A Belated Friday Post...

It feels like somebody finally shot that goddamn elephant and hauled its sorry arse off my shoulders.

This is awesome.



Thursday, 28 October 2010

Left Luggage...

I shall tell you from the offset, this post has been written over the course of the day in gaps between academic engagements (where I sat in empty rooms and would usually have been twiddling my thumbs) or during the lectures themselves - sometime last night I decided to develop a fairly nasty chest and throat infection so I'm remaining silenced and thus entirely useless.

It is also set to be one of my longer entries.

Having slept fitfully, the first thing I did when I awoke was to make myself a cup of tea and read over what I only vaguely remember writing in the early hours of this morning.

My reaction was as follows; 'I really should delete this, it makes absolutely no sense, wait, I can't because that would go against everything I started this project for. Bollocks. OK, I may as well try to wade through my pseudo-philosophical rambling and attempt to justify or (if I'm absolutely scraping the barrel for ideas) at least clarify it if only for myself'.

As such, I've chewed it over for a number of hours and a few too many aspirin to reach a conclusion...

I believe what I was attempting to illustrate, through my rather misjudged ultimatum was an imaginative culmination of the past few day's worth of blogging and discussion with various people.

I have previously admitted that I revel in deception but only, it seems, of myself - it has become increasingly clear that this has brought about nothing positive, and over the course of a few weeks I have almost imperceptibly outgrown my longest trusted defence mechanism simply because it outlived its effectiveness.

I am ready to cut ties with play acting my way from one day to the next and equally so with those that have encouraged me to do so.

I laid down my demands, few that they are, and yet Edwin Black (for I will name and pin this devil) you failed to step up to the mark. I'm done with waiting for plans made in the heat of passion, a lifetime ago for us both, to come to fruition.

Holding my breath was getting uncomfortable anyway.

This ship has now sailed and it is headed for fairer shores than yours, though where they rest (or if they are as of yet even in sight) I don't know. Yet, I have no doubt I will love again as passionately and give my heart as freely a hundred times over.

You see, thanks to science we're able to live four, five times longer than our Great Great Grandparents who partnered, married and had children (generally) with a single person. Not because their love was any better, or their monogamous moral fibre more sturdy but because they died.

Although it is my belief you never fall out of love with a person, you simply stop liking them, to claim you are only able to love once - one single, insignificant bit of carbon out of billions - is to do yourself an emotional injustice.

You can love a partner yet you would never claim an inability to love your children as ferociously...or your grandparents, parents, siblings, friends?

We are built to interact - to seek out contact, exchange, understanding, happiness...this ability is not lost because your first boyfriend fucked you over or your marriage ended.

It's about time I started taking my own advice:

I will devote myself with heart and mind to those that earn it and make fair exchange.

I will understand that to not be in a relationship is not to be alone.

I will not live by a series of plans: mourning their loss should they fail or only allowing myself to feel elation if they are carried through.

I will understand life is flux, we alter moment to moment and to try and contain a universe of possibility in a house, a car or a dog is just silly.

I will forget each one of these the second his eyes meet mine across a crowded bar.



Wednesday, 27 October 2010

Happy 1000 Views...

I know I promised something cheerful and in a mildly backhanded and drunken way, this is.

My name is Elise Hadgraft and I've just forcibly thrown up five pints of beer because I don't want a hangover tomorrow.

All that I have done and all that I will be rests on tonight and the response I receive to this entry.

My hands are burning from the cold, my head aches and I'm wishing desperately that Pixel wasn't getting utterly fucked up in Derby so that I had somebody to talk to - although I send him my absolute best, if anybody deserves a break from my antics it's him.

I know that certain people positively hang on my every written word - from those that used to know me, want to further understand me or desire to use my own candid confession against you I have a message: I'm a liar.

A fucking good one from all the practice I've had.

If you genuinely wish to explore the depths of my psyche, talk to me.

I'm unable to spout my fictitious bullshit in the context of face to face interaction.

Everything I admit, when looking you in the eyes, is a fundamental truth - this also applies to when I'm drunk and/or on drugs.

It's the curse of my family to give themselves away when discretion is actually called for and I often wonder if I'm really as opposed to carrying on that line as I claim.

That's why I'm making a pact with myself.

I'm not going to fall into the trap of blagging my way out of or simply denying myself happiness because I haven't got the balls to stand up and stake my claim - my past is nothing more than the baby steps that got me to where I am now.

All is forgiven. Nothing is forgotten.

I have loved, I have lied and I will do only one of these again.

Make your choice.



Tuesday, 26 October 2010

You're So Vain...

The advent of social networking sites has, in my opinion, a lot more to answer for than it's usual charges of Internet grooming, virtual bullying and complete knob-waggling in the face of every personal privacy law we have left.

What it has spawned, more dangerous than anything else, is the cult of the 'Status Update Interpreter'.

[It is something I'm guilty of as much as any of you currently reading this thanks to whatever witty or persuasive tag line I've linked it under.]

Whether you direct your efforts as Facebook amateur empath towards a particular person (religiously updating their page every five minutes) or, less commonly, simply scan the Newsfeed for anything that you may be able to attribute to yourself is irrelevant - the motive and result for both are one and the same.

You end up quietly seething, completely deluded or in it's most base form - just wrong.

There have been several incidents over the past few days wherein certain people have decided to read into rather benign, or so-vague-as-to-be-utterly-inane updates on my page as a direct attack on their person.

None of them the actual target.

Unable to hamper their rage, public and private posting has been made that I think everybody involved probably regrets and friendships of many years were tested...the catalyst for this? Misreading a single word; 'train' as 'plane'.

You see, I say we have become 'Status Update Interpreters' - I never claimed that we were particularly attentive or adept at what we seek to do.

It manifests itself in a number of other ways, not all of them as 'balls out' aggressive.

I'll put my hand up and admit that often, when I have read between the lines (include in this also 'wishfully') but am unsure of my conclusions I'll update with something that, if I had read the other parties message correctly, would signal them to my understanding...for example an in-joke or the use of a similar word.

Obviously, if a reply is not made in partner form I can assume I was wrong and evade feeling like a dick.

More often than not, this is what happens.

Complications occur however when you're actively seeking a cause for argument or in the odd instances that a third party is involved, when interpretations must vie for dominance it is increasingly likely that intellectual sparks will fly.

A third incarnation of this growing trend is found merely in our readiness to reply to a status as though our poorly worded opinion may make the person stop in their tracks, re-evaluate their entire life and buy us a yacht to say 'Thank you, before this I was blind to my own emotional and social standpoint!'

I can positively see the smattering of raised eyebrows; "But Annie, fair point and all but why is any of this a problem...especially a larger one than kiddie fiddling?"

There are two conclusions this argument can reach:

1) It illustrates the absolute breakdown in inter-personal communication - conversations that could be conducted or conflicts resolved in a matter of minutes over coffee or on the phone are drawn out over days of hiding behind YouTube clips, obscure remarks or jauntily angled profile pictures. We're slowly becoming a generation of non-entities, these persona's are spilling into real life and relationships (subsequently emotional and mental health) are suffering because of it.

2) We are opinionated, yes and this is something I actively campaign for but rather than getting gobby about the actual injustices in the world we're pouring pages of prose into judging 'X' because she fucked 'Y's' boyfriend at some shitty student party on Saturday night.

Stop wasting your energy, scribble up one of your witticisms on a placard and go and make a meaningful difference in an arena that needs you.



Monday, 25 October 2010

In My Head, I'm Dancing Naked...

I really should start blogging slightly earlier in the day - it might be because I'm getting on a bit, but by this time at night I'm ready for my drastically ugly dressing gown, a brew and a no-brainer Black Lace novel.

I'm still in said dressing gown but, rather than the above (and vastly more preferable option), I'm sipping cheap 'n' nasty energy drink and endeavouring to dress my recently acquired hat.

Honestly, if somebody had come up to my 12 year old, would-be-Wednesday-Addams self and said; "Honey, eight years down the line you'll be stressing over what shade of suede court shoes is going to match your 1940's, hand-veiled, vintage cloche" - first I'd likely have looked utterly confused then I'd have cried and ran away.

In many respects I've really not turned out how I pictured I would but I'm fairly happy with both my emotional and physical developments, especially over the past few months.

Speaking of physicality (and getting to the actual point), the incredibly recent changes became strikingly apparent in the shower this morning - for the first time I took a good long look at my body and suddenly realised 'Shit, I'm woman shaped'.

[I'll clarify for the men who read this - you may not notice the difference between a 'child with breasts' and an actual woman but we do.]

Everybody begins absolutely shapeless, one line top to bottom...the magic of puberty happens and you see the arrival of tits and hips in the early developers (or whatever other politically correct way you want to dress up the children built like playboy models).

Yet, despite these archetypal feminine signifiers (the sort that allow you to blag your way into bars when you're 14) there's a certain sense of disproportion about the whole thing - it has become increasingly easy to spot with the rise in over-sexualisation of under 16' can dress them up in whatever adult fashions you want, slap on some fake bake and hair extensions and still something just looks a bit 'off'.

As a bottom heavy girl it always bothered me, I've striven to return to my ambiguous androgynous shape for years purely to kick myself into the even proportions I've always equated with adulthood...

Except, whilst I was distracted, nature happily evened me out and I've eventually achieved (without dieting or sweating like a paedophile at a playschool) a body I'm proud of, almost over night.

[I would like to take this moment to thank the 'Nork Fairy', I never believed but eventually you came through for me, cheers.]

Suddenly I don't feel like a twat for buying my underwear from Pandora's Choice as opposed to Primark, or owning a dress that comes down to my calves, wearing barely-there heeled shoes or a cute hat - I don't need to cinch, pad or flash my way to can just tell.

I feel more naturally beautiful than I have in a long time, but a little decoration never goes amiss. I'm a blank canvas now and I have the paints at the ready.



Sunday, 24 October 2010

A Collaboration (Of Sorts)...

I have a migraine.

It's of such a vicious nature that I'm sat in the dark wearing 80's hacker style shades to deflect some of the glare emanating from my (unplugged) laptop.

A sorry picture of lonely studentdom if ever there was one...except for a single factor, Pixel is sat next to me, practically in my lap no less, talking about his cock, your cock, the collective cocks of the entire world simply because he knows it annoys the hell out of me.

He's also acting as my over-shoulder, backseat beta reader.

[Editors comment: YOU'RE A DICK...(specially requested in capitals)]

I think I finally understand why the Late Great's locked themselves away from their wives and children for the entire time it takes to write anything of merit.


If there was a word which fully sums up 'sitting in silence, rubbing my brow and hoping to God that my flatmate is one of the several percent per year to suffer an unexpected brain aneurysm'...


...You know what, I've completely forgotten what I was supposed to be writing about today - let us simply assume it was something highly profound and be done with it.

[Editors comment: MAH DICK'S PROFOUND.]

Yeah, that about summarises it.




[Editors comment: AND PIXEL DOT.]

Saturday, 23 October 2010

She's Got The Montezuma Voodoo...

After a two day hiatus, thanks to the intervention of an actual life, I'm back into the 'Blog-Sphere' with new found creativity and cause for great length.

I just watched 'Shutter Island' and, as Pixel rightfully pointed out, am having a rather spectacular fit of absolute paranoia.

For anybody who's not seen it (spoiler alert) - chap arrives on psychiatric penitentiary island in the butt-fuck middle of nowhere to investigate a patient disappearance, some crazy hallucinating/archetypal conspiracy shit goes down, eventually it's revealed the whole shindig has been one massive role playing session to get him to admit that he's insane - breakthrough, relapse, lobotomy.

OK, so it's not going to win an Oscar for originality but it got me to thinking.

I've flirted with mental illness for a good many years - done my usual stints in school councillors offices, psychotherapy sessions, self-referral to the P-Wards, forced referral to the P-Wards, self-help groups, A&E (post life threatening stunts) and being medicated up to high hell.

I've never seen anything through to the end - skipped sessions, dropped my dosage, turned back when we got to the hospital, bullshitted and excused every delusional or violent episode away as PMT, hangovers...misunderstandings. You get the idea.

I'm not crazy. I'm just eccentric.

More often than not, letting loose for a while is simply fun - my flatmates enjoy my mania, even my Mooma finds it hilarious and my creativity receives limitless benefits from it...the depression, that's just the price you pay for the good times.

But sometimes, sometimes after I see (even in fiction) the terrible things that untreated psychological problems can bring about or when I remember, not what has been done to me - which I do - every day, but what I've done to myself, to my family or friends...then I start to worry.

The moment the most important people in your life turn round to you and say you've gone too far and despite putting everything, every semblance of control you have left into it, you can't stop - that's when you elevate from 'quirky' into 'dangerous'.

The last few weeks have been preoccupied with looking to the future, whether that be in respect of employment or family, and right now all those plans seem laid on some incredibly shaky foundations: how well will she hold it together, for how long this time?

The last thing I want to do, sat here as I am now being of sane mind and body, is hurt people but I am aware of how quickly that changes; the muscle spasms, the shakes, the burning in the blood, sweating and swearing and sticking that knife a little further in each time I scream into the face of the people I love.

The worst of it; that's not where I want it to stop.

It's never enough to see them cry. To verbally take people apart piece by piece purely because I can. Fucking with the minds of both old friend and stranger alike, till somebody breaks, comes down to my level...there's a part of me that isn't satisfied with this, wants to take it to the next stage, and that's the one I don't want anywhere near my future children.

I'm contemplating going back on my medication, seeing this through and once and for all putting my demons to sleep - unfortunately these things don't come with a guarantee nor do drugs have any concept of what to leave out of their mental purging.

They can't differentiate the good from the bad, the healthy from the abnormal - it's like using nukes on a basket of kittens and if it doesn't work? One day, years down the line, I'm declared sane and come off Sertraline or whatever cocktail they have me on by then - everything is peachy and then 'boom!'.

Sirens, headlines, fucking...Crimewatch, life in prison - just another wanker let down by the rapidly failing system - nothing gained at the expense of all capability to imagine, love, be a functional human being for the few years I had.

Reversely, I don't go on my meds - I act a bit weird now and then and it's fine.

Or I act a little too weird and I simply don't get the chance to meet anybody with whom I could have my theoretical family to (hypothetically) murder in their sleep.

If I do this, when I do this, I'm doing it for those close to me, and not for myself - I'm sick of being a burden.



Thursday, 21 October 2010

I Fucking Hate Thursdays...

In memoriam; Ari Up, lead singer of The Slits, died yesterday aged 48 after a serious illness.

Today's blog has been postponed.

Call it a literary minute of silence, if you will.



Wednesday, 20 October 2010

The Beginning Of The End...

Today, as I tend to when I'm suffering severe PMT, I had a revelation.

I've been lying to myself again - expertly, I might add, but the complexity of a deception does not excuse it.

I have relentlessly been pushing my energy into doomed, and in hindsight drastically unimportant, endeavours such as the pursuit of unsuitable partners whilst frivolously excusing away all the effort that goes in to altering my physicality, fashion, values, manners etc as a means by which to gain their favour as "Worth it for happiness...however fleeting."

Satisfaction has been illusive and to be perfectly honest I'm getting rather sick of being looked down upon, talked down to and generally finding myself treated like an emotional doormat.

When viewed in the cold light of day, not only do the personalities of the men in question actually fall well short of the marvellous, but I've also realised that I have no need to justify myself in terms of having (or for that matter not having) a stable, conventional relationship.

I have always been, and will continue to be, a chaffinch. Anybody who doesn't understand this analogy evidently hasn't seen me drunk.

In tandem with this discovery I have also decided it's about time I started acting my age and, though this will take significantly longer to achieve, looking it.

As such I will be, over the course of the next few weeks, selling off a large amount (if not all) of my clothing - this consists of mainly alternative designers in styles ranging from Cyber to Rockabilly so if anybody wishes to have a link to my eBay account, please don't hesitate to give me a shout.

I am also open to trade for vintage (preferably 1920's style - so raid your [Great]Grandparents wardrobes) including furs.

I shall be wearing a hat for the next three months, potentially six, and conserving money by ceasing to drink it - once I am ready to re-enter polite society I'll let you know.

Meanwhile, expect creativity to boom and ranting (coloured with barely contained violence) to increase exponentially over the course of the next two weeks.



Tuesday, 19 October 2010

A Brief Interlude...

Despite having done absolutely nothing with my day, I find myself incredibly tired and as such completely un-enthused about writing this blog so rather than tackling anything of intellectual merit I'm inclined to spend a brief moment rambling about a conversation me and Pixel had today.

With the advent of 3D television it was only a matter of time until those of us with our minds permanently in the gutter got to wondering; so what does this mean for pornography?

Thirty seconds worth of Googling later and we had an answer.

Karma-Sutra from Mark Dorcel - the first porno to make use of modern 3D technology, I say 'modern' quite specifically as 40 years previous the migraine-inducing Disco Dolls in Hot Skin tackled this particular niche.

Unfortunately, the article we found on Gizmondo (the first one to pop up - we're inquisitive yet lazy) was terribly unenlightening but some of the comments in response were absolutely classic:

"Acting on the other hand will still be two-dimensional."
"I used to love watching 3D porn but then my neighbour decided to start closing the blinds..."
"If you're classy enough to own a big fancy schmancy 3D TV...are you really going to lounge out in your living room wearing glasses to jack yourself off?"
"Can you imagine a 3D cum shot? You'd duck while you fap."
"What, no 3-double-D jokes?"

I'm inclined to agree with the majority in this case; novel as 3D filth may be for all of ten minutes - much like sex in real life - the love affair will be over before you know it and you'll be left alone, unfulfilled, looking silly, with a raging headache.



Monday, 18 October 2010

A Poet Walks Into A Bar...

I'm going to apologise in advance for how brief this particular entry is likely to be, I've been coerced into doing a little spoken word set down at the Banshee Labyrinth open mic night so after cobbling together some material I've really been left rather short of time.

Admittedly, I was a little skeptical at first - it's always been a personal sore point to be the poet in amongst the musicians and often your entry to the stage, accompanied by 'Will now be reciting some stuff for you', is the cue for everybody else to go to the bar.

Fortunately, I got an omen when I skipped off for a smoke a few minutes ago.

I say 'omen' - it's more like 'totally weird coincidence and yes, I might be grasping at straws so I don't simply resort to vodka to get me on stage' but in my book, it'll do.

Anybody who hasn't got the memo yet, I'm reliving an old obsession with Harley Quinn...that's basically been the gist of the last three days worth of blogging.

When I went down to the garages I noticed a playing card on the ground (as though somebody had just slipped it through the bars), now I smiled to myself and though 'Wouldn't it be funny if...', weebled over, picked it up and whaddya know; The Joker.

So, it's decided, I'm just going to risk looking like a complete arse and take all opportunities to get my work out there in every possible way that I can - if I can raise a few giggles, eyebrows or expectations of what being a 'poet' actually means then it'll be worth the funny looks.

I'm still nervous as hell. Everything I'm performing tonight has either been finished in the last four hours or never seen the sweaty lights of a stage so there's a pretty large margin for it all going tits up.

Just for that reason, anybody who's in Edinburgh and free for a little knees up should make their way down - my atrocious five minutes aside there's set to be some incredibly gifted people performing and the booze is cheap.

What better way to kick off a week.



Sunday, 17 October 2010

Welcome Back...

It's been a wacky few days, yes indeedy do.

She was radiant (terribly quiet though), beautiful words were said by some drastically ugly people, the flowers were...a little tacky and several guests got food poisoning from the buffet but all in all it was a honourable send off for the old girl.


I've had this defence mechanism as long as I can comfortably remember - whenever life gets a little too real and I'm being repeatedly assaulted with grown up concerns like essay deadlines, future employment, failed relationships or debt repayments - I'll latch on to fiction.

For most people the escapism would stop there.

Read trash for a few days, watch movies, purposefully imbibe anything that belongs to the three major, student nutritional groups; sugar, booze or drugs and then toddle off and pick up your old life.

Not me.

You see, I'm a natural born runner. When the shit hits the fan I'll be first out the room before you can shout 'But this Versace suit is dry clean only!'.

When I was little I didn't have the luxury of social autonomy, there was no 'picking up a bag 'and simply skipping cities, instead I would lose myself playing some extreme version of world view dress-up.

I would read, watch, listen, absorb - I've always been driven by visuals so a book brings me as much mental aesthetic pleasure as any film - eventually I would temporarily become an adaptation of the character with whom I was fixated.

It's typical childhood logic - no more me, no more problem.

My personal lines between fantasy and reality have been blurred from birth, couple this with being raised to understand one truth; 'If you believe your own bullshit, others will too' and you have the perfect aligning of nature and nurture to produce a human walk-in-wardrobe of personalities.

[Changing yourself is far easier than changing the world...or something like that.]

There have been many tear-stained pillows over the last few years when I eventually realised I had no solid concept of who I was when this began, there's no way of knowing how I would have turned out if Elise Hadgraft had lived past her terrible two's and to a certain extent I don't think I want to.

This eccentricity has made me a particularly tricky person to love, to be around for any sustained length of time and more importantly to gain any concrete understanding of. Even my Mooma eventually gave up, smiled, nodded, patted me on the head and left me to get on with it.

Yet, ever the optimist, I like to think of my quirks as a actually *insert suitable number here* for one deal - you'll certainly never get bored when you wake up next to somebody new every few months.

Unfortunately very few people are willing to see the benefit of this as I get older, there expecting me to shake it off like any other 'kidulthood' phase and rejoin the land of the 100% certifiably sane at any moment.

That's never going to happen.

It might alter slightly, become less pronounced or I'll begin to lose myself in more mature characters...hey, one or two honourable traits might eventually rub off but right now, right now I just want to hold on to the last bit of innocence I have left.

When I'm allowed to roam outside my preassigned box, the Universe becomes my fairground but it's no fun if I have nobody to play with.



Saturday, 16 October 2010

When Real Life Just Isn't Interesting Enough...

The second attempt at The 434 - you get bonus points if you can guess the character cameo role.

In all respects I feel that this one is a step above the last, much as I loathe to admit it, I think Bram was on to something when he started writing every day - I'm feeling infinitely more productive than I have in years.

Not only are new works bubbling their way to the surface but I'm actually seeking my abandoned pieces and getting things done.

All criticism is welcome.



Flash 434: Desperately Seeking...

She never had much luck with men, actually that was an understatement, her track record read like Jeremy Kyle's most wanted list.

It stemmed from a wonderful habit of being imperceptibly drawn to the deranged.

It was her curse to see the good, the potential in everybody.

They'd be peachy keen for a few weeks.

Then it would start. A declaration of love. The realisation they'd never get it so easy again.

The second they said those three little words they'd begin to throw trite compliments into every sentence, flood her with meaningless little trinkets, declare fucking 'making love' – the whole relationship lost any kind of appeal it once had.

Then they would leave.

By the age of 21 she'd had about all she could stand.

She just wanted somebody to immerse herself in, obsess over, like a fiction written just for her. She didn't mind the cruelty, she was a big girl, she could take it.

It was the boredom that really killed her. Then the loneliness.

She didn't want them fixed. Normal.

The good she saw was the total freedom of a mind, whether it needed external help to reach that state or not and the potential was that of utter chaos. Unpredictability. Living every waking moment on the razors edge. Two against the world.

It made the moments of tenderness so much more vibrant – to live a 'normal' life to her was like eating sweets every day. You get fat, lazy, complacent.

On her 22nd birthday she begged, borrowed and stole enough money to rectify this situation once and for all.

When a few ingenious basement dwellers had discovered how little data it took to code a human personality, give it autonomy, there had been outrage. Pushed onto the black market. It was unnatural. Inhumane. Perfect.

With enough personal information, and financial lubrication, you could get 'anybody' you wanted - it was just the case of taking one of the surprisingly minimal 'default' persona's, making a few incomprehensibly technical tweaks here and there and voila.

Downloaded straight into your noggin. A partner who really could get inside your head. It put a whole new spin on 'Go fuck yourself'.

When she'd made her request, a well known character (easy as pie) they had been dubious; “It's all going to end in tears before bedtime, man...”

They found her a few weeks later. Mutilated. Grinning. She'd done a bang-up job of it by his standards, he was actually proud of the little freak.

There was the small matter of being temporarily disembodied but hopefully he'd be downloaded again soon.

Friday, 15 October 2010

Error 404.

I'm temporarily out of my mind.

Feel free to leave a message.

I think I left some Post-it notes around here somewhere.

[Or flay a close friend - I'm sure the import of your ramblings warrants a pound of flesh.]

I have so much to smile about right now.

I mean REALLY smile.

Positively splitting this face of mine in two.

Not to mention my sides.

It's quite pleasant really.

Mental freedom.

I should take my sanity constitutionals more often.

In fact, I will.

I'm up for it if you are handsome.



Thursday, 14 October 2010

Stranger than...

When I was 17 I fell in love.

We met the night my boyfriend drunkenly decided to fuck you - I was completely wasted and half naked as I tended to be, slumped on a beanbag chair (oddly currently located in the living room of my Edinburgh flat) when the mister just leaned over and in a slurred show of bravado inquired "So, do you want me to suck his cock?"

OK, so it wasn't the most conventional beginning to a life long romance but we were peculiar that way.

Afterwards you lay on my bedroom floor and held my hand all night, I didn't sleep.

Three years later and I've probably spent less time alone with you than most of the people I claim to fervently hate - for a while we spoke every day, hooked up when we could and didn't really venture further than my bedroom.

It wasn't all about the sex, though that was a definite perk, we'd drink, smoke, chat shit for hours...lay down plans for our future, name our hypothetical children, wax philosophical or bitch about our respective shitty situations.

"One day, one day soon we'll get it sussed. Up and leave. Be together like a real couple."

You were my entire life and like the child I was every time you got on that fucking train to go home I'd wave, heart in my throat, knowing when you eventually returned...a few weeks, a few months down the line it would be as though you'd never gone at all.

The summer before university: You're living in the city with the girl you've been involved with for the whole time I've known you; a flat, a routine, a life.

I'm in Stockport with my best friend...we've been drinking again.

18 years old, convinced I'm a woman, I take it into my mind that right now is the perfect time to give you that pivotal phone call: "Please, please just leave her. I won't go to university. I love you."

Placated with promises, I waited it out until you could get away to see me in person.

For two days, we had our paradise and we razed it to the ground...danced in its remains like true heathens.

Then you had to leave - going to see her family, finish it properly, burn the bridges so you couldn't go back...prove yourself a man.

"Sweetie, this won't be the last time I see you. It wont."

I kissed you at the gate to Platform 10, turned my back and left.

You never were an accomplished liar, were you.

I'm 20 now; I have a flat, a routine, a life.

It's not the one you promised me - in truth it's a little broken, manic, dysfunctional but it's mine in a way that you never were.

Never will be.



Wednesday, 13 October 2010

I Can Has Flash Fiction?

A planned debut submission to The 434 - it was a bit of a bastard to stick to such a specific word limit but this is my first shot at fiction in a good long while so I needed something to ease me in gently...that was a hell of a lot of writers rust to shake off.

Let me know what you think.



Flash434: Romance Isn't Dead.

Gets out of work just in time to jump the last bus home from the city centre, limbs aching, eyes strained and vowing that if the project wasn't so close to completion there's no way in hell she'd be burning the midnight oil seven days a week.

Deposits her fare and pockets her spectacles (prescription long out of date), they're aggravating her migraine. She's been staring into the whites of humanities eyes too long today – this claustrophobic, tin-canned snapshot of club kids and drunks would likely tip her over the edge...she doesn't need to see.

Guides herself down the aisle, slides into the first seat that isn't radiating body heat.

There's a couple sat in front of her. Their voices mingle, an acoustic convergence, so that even without clear vision she knows their heads are pressed tightly together.

She guesses they must be young. In love.

Lets it wash over her, the subdued hum of inebriated banter, savoring the forty minutes per day where she's under no orders to think. Think harder. Think about what you've done.

She becomes aware of a lull in conversation, a pregnant pause, the next voice she hears is affectionately probing, a little unsure.

“Babes, hypothetically, if there was a zombie uprising and I was bitten...what would you do?” Delivered giggling, biting back sincerity like any good woman.

She waits. Expectantly. Blanket of indistinguishable noise removed it's all she can do.

“Well,” he replies “first off I'd dose you up on plenty of medication, take you back to our flat and put you to bed. As you drift off I'd remind you how much I love you, kiss your forehead...that way I did when we first met...then I'd cave your fucking skull in.”

They laugh.

Six months later when the virus strikes she finds herself traveling that same stretch of road. Doctor and mother of the hell outside the armored vehicles and military escort.

The hospital was the first part of the city to be secured, big fences and burly men with guns and ammo enough to stay the course

A noise to her left catches her attention. There's another one at the gates. Female this time, staring vacantly, soaked in blood.

It's holding something to it's chest, cradling it like a child and through the scope on her rifle she can make out a human arm.

Their hands are entwined.

She lines up to take the shot, remembers that night on the bus.

“Never leave a man to do a woman's job”.

Closes her eyes, pulls the trigger. She doesn't need to see.

Tuesday, 12 October 2010

Cock-Slap, Wake Up Call...

Well, I hope my Thatcherite peers feel suitably proud of themselves today - that's if they can muster up the human capacity to feel anything much past entirely malleable and complacent.


Looks like a triple whammy in the budget cuts for the poor, female students.

Obviously, being at Edinburgh University, there are those of you waiting to hop into Daddy's job (or Daddy's friends), with the luxury of taking a year or several out every now and then to go and do your 'starving Africans' bit or drink your university career away from the comfort of a George Street penthouse...

...Meanwhile back in the real world; those of us who have begged, borrowed or stolen our way out of poverty and who's families (single parent) have sacrificed their own happiness to give us a chance at higher education, well we're rapidly watching the rug pulled in our wake as a means by which to throw us into an economy where there are no jobs waiting and our hypothetical children are utterly screwed.

[Dear NHS, have fun dealing with that peak in tween to twenty-something suicide rates.]

The removal of a cap on University fees is simply the beginning of a chain reaction, a vicious circle which Cameron (high in his ivory fucking tower) really hasn't thought through all that thoroughly.

Let me break it down for you:

1) Removal of cap on fees - they increase to £6000-12,000 per year - funding for poor kids would be £3000 loan + £3000 grant...anybody else see the problem here?
2) You are now automatically denied entry to anywhere of academic merit and even the polytechnic of shit all else to do will cripple you with fee's leaving *dun dun dun* NO money to live on.
3) We now have the poor (getting poorer) but happily fenced off into two categories: a) Confined to their home cities and b) Unable to do anything bar the work that actually isn't there in the first place.
4) As a result, anybody with a sense of self-preservation will just go on the sodding Dole.
5) BUT, that's suffering cuts too - there will be an imposition of time limits, payment delays and the obvious decrease in the money you are being given anyway - all as a means by which to force people into non-existent jobs.
6) We now have a country divided in nigh on Victorian standards.
7) So you're (hypothetically) a poor, uneducated mother who has also had their Health in Pregnancy Grant, the Sure Start Maternity Grant and Child Benefit frozen - you're going to force your kids to study hard, sacrifice what little you have and push them into higher education.
8) Yet, what's this? The removal of a cap on fees...

You see?

[Before you go quoting the BBC news page at me, which is disturbingly supportive of this move if we go by the rules of counterweight journalism, Scotland are taking it into 'serious consideration' too.]

I mean, yes, I breathed a sigh of relief this morning when I realised I've bypassed these cuts - I'm in higher education, the knob-jockeys can't really touch me, but I'm also strikingly aware that very little awaits me at the end of this four year stint.

I genuinely feel guilty...FUCKING GUILTY for wanting to have a family because this is no world to bring children into - the Tories, in one fell swoop, have disempowered, disenfranchised and in some respects (re: procreational guilt) defeminised sub-working class women and we're all just assuming the position and yelling 'Ooh, Sir, take me again!'


I for one have reached the stage where, in my mind, there is only one course of action - get up and make a massive nuisance of myself.

For a reclamation of the right to protest, an actual step towards gender equality and the vague hope that we can force the Tories out of power - I am willing to take whatever the bastards can throw at me - be it a criminal record or actual projectiles.

Are you in?



Monday, 11 October 2010

Crisis Averted...

Well, that was an interesting little vacation from the usual wordy bollocks.

Thank you to everybody who submitted and also to those that didn't - you see, I've been a tad naughty...

The tracks I provided were little more than the result of five minutes effort, flipping my Mp3 player onto shuffle, selecting the first 8 that came up and re-arranging the order so they made some kind of musical (and seemingly logical) sense.

I have a long lasting interest in people's opinions of their own ability to empathise and subsequently the personal projections we impose on abstract situations - the art of the armchair philosopher.

Friends, you did not disappoint.

From the small number of responses received the majority were, as expected, attempts to derive a meaning from the lyrics of the songs - searching for symbolism or parallels, connections to previous blog entries or conversations conducted outside of the Internet bubble...a point of interest was that those most seeking 'the correct answer' were new friends or ones with whom I've grown recently distant.

For the record, if any meaning need be assigned to those songs the ones you provided (in their over-ruling similarity) would have done nicely. You are evidently all incredibly attentive readers.

As for the many who decided not to throw any opinions down in a more permanent medium - I have a hits counter on here and last night (and into this morning) after posting my playlist it went through the fucking roof.

I believe there was a very simple reason for so many reading this particular needed to know because you could know.

I'm not a particularly interesting person but in opening up my life, every aspect of it, to the public I am offering you something it would be rude to refuse. This same desire displayed here catalyses people to listen in on conversations on the bus or watch Big Brother. To give in to the temptation of anonymous judgement, to shamelessly indulge it even, is perfectly natural.

Well done for being 100% normal.

The final part of this blog is dedicated to those that were onto me from the outset - the two participants who have little difficulty thinking outside the box (it's remaining in the vicinity of the box that evidently poses the problem) and provided me with a good few minutes unadulterated giggling - my Mother Unit and my best friend.

You know me too well.

Normality resumes tomorrow and as for that pint, well it appears that I'm the victor so I'll be having one on you guys.



Sunday, 10 October 2010

This Could Go Horribly Wrong...

The idea is fairly simple:

I give you 8 tracks - you either take a genuine guess at what's going on, sit and smile knowledgeably to yourself, text me some needless abuse or make up something vastly more interesting than the actual answer and send the result to me via Facebook.

I will, Brownies honour, post everything I receive on here.

Once that's out the way, I'll select whichever answer tickles my fancy and gift you with a) A poem or b) A pint.

Have at thee.



1) Ok we'll do this the way my parents made me, a shot in the dark =P

I'm guessing you have come across feelings for someone that physically, emotionally or psychologically repulses you for some reason. Someone that you know that you shouldn't have feelings for because of current relationships or whatever but none the less lose control slightly when you're around them. They however don't realise your feelings for them or disregard them and view you more as robotic and emotionless. Of which you find absolutely disgusting and despicable but for some unknown reason makes you want them even more. I forgot the rest so that'll have to do you.

2) That you fuck up sometimes, that the people you care about are far away either physically or emotionally, that you have your scars because you're still human, but you're stronger and smarter because of what you've gone through?

3) Post-sexual fugue in which you decide men are not worth a ha'penny, and as such wind up a penny-less botched Op rent boy by the name of El Zaulo the Magnificent (cock swallower). You're currently in a crack haus in Berlin, and the girl we all... believed to be El is actually an autonomic fembot, programmed by your late great eccentric inventor of a father. Pity you're addicted to all that Nuclear Crack™, else you might have lived out your dream to be the only woman to light up Broadway without the aid of conventional limbs (though unorthodox, you have mastered the dexterity of your own meaty schlong and are able to propel yourself short distances with the repetitive tensing and un-tensing of the throbbing Magnum betwixt yo legs)

Am I close? 8D

4) You like someone, the feelings are not reciprocated, you want to look like you don't give a fuck, but you *really* like them. Either way, you're not in a great place because of it, but you're slowly moving on?

5) You have just discovered that you and Brian from Placebo have been cloned from the same jaded lab sample and are staking your claim on the angst of the world.

Slowly, Slowly Catchy Monkey...

Today's blog is brought to you by the number 42 - admittedly, like any self respecting Douglas Adam's fan, I'm waiting for the answer to Life, The Universe and Everything but would quite honestly settle for a resolution to 'What did I do to deserve this?'

My first mistake was probably going drinking at 7pm.

The second was going drinking at Banshee Labyrinth on a Saturday, actually not just any Saturday but the one Saturday a month where everybody who dropped me like a hot rock when I stopped being a Cyber Kid congregates in a claustrophobic, sweaty, fairly smelly mass of goth-snobbery and awful hair extensions.

Third; attempting to do this bald, in a pink leopard print dress, drag queen heels and still get my oontz on because, difficult as it may be to believe, a change of fashion does not dictate a altering in musical taste.

Final and most fatal mistake - ignorance. Remaining blissfully unaware (until it was too late) that everybody in Edinburgh I have ever slept with, short of the boys I live with, was going to be at the same club.

Altogether a fairly toxic combination of unfortunate circumstances and too much Jack Daniels.

But what of it?

In most similar situations I would have simply had more to drink, pulled the punk rock pout, sent a two-fingered salute the direction of anybody silly enough to piss me off and got on with it but something about last night caused me to throw one hell of a wobbly.

This dubious honour is gifted to The Exes - who all insisted on being so incredibly...nice in a drastically obnoxious way.

"You know I still care about you right?"

"Once I got past the jealousy and heartbreak."

"I'm crap at it...but I do care."

"That attention span of yours is getting worse"

"I never stopped caring."

"So I never called you back but I met that friend of yours, she's amazing."

"I care, right?"

"You love it really..."

For the record, you cheated on me. I mean, fuck, one of you had a secret life in a different sodding country.

By the way, I want my underwear back.

I don't 'love it' when you grab the arse of the archetypal, anorexic goth tart next to you and tell my I look awful to bolster up some delusional sense of machismo.

Yeah, you never called me and that friend of mine...good luck with that trip to the clinic nine months down the line.

You called me, you even took me on a date but wouldn't tell your friends we were going out.

Yet, despite all this - I'm the bastard?

The cold-hearted, ice queen, attention whore?

Fuck off.

I'm sick of feeling guilty for wanting to be happy; my real problem stems from my heart being too big (I have an excess of love to give), it's not being an 'ice-queen' it's trying to create a little mystery and since when did wanting to engage in the art of conversation, go out on dates or receive the occasional complement warrant being labelled an 'attention whore'?

I think I was merely born out of my time, an anachronism, an anarchist, a shameless fucking optimist - the rest of the world is off kilter, not me.

I'm in this for the long game...slowly, slowly catchy monkey.



Saturday, 9 October 2010

Good Morning Sunshine...

So, I was in Newcastle yesterday...but I'm not going to bore you with the details.

What we made over the course of an afternoon, a few pints and plenty of profane language will speak for itself once the necessary turd polishing has taken place and I can throw the finished products up on here for public consideration.

Eyes peeled, kiddies.

Instead I wish to tackle the microcosm of events that took place entirely from the left pocket of my Henley's parka.

Oh, but I'm being obscure again.

I befell the wrath of my first critic on Friday - oddly enough exactly one week since I began this cathartic little endeavour - and 'mildly pissed off' taken as a given, I was more notably surprised that it hadn't arrived via the expected channels.

In fact, it came from an entirely uninvolved party.

To save on utilising any language that may involve whipping out a thesaurus to decipher it's complex connotations, the long and short of the matter runs thus...


Dear Madam,
Your little blogging sessions
Are a riddle of indiscretions
And 'inappropriate intentions'.
I'll admit I'm less than pleased.


It upsets me greatly that
Being blunt is cause to hate me
But it's cool, because you're crazy...
And that's my cue to leave.

For the record, that's exactly what I did - leave well alone I mean.

I'm getting too old for middle-school mind games and to be honest, if you have to go light a candle and channel a sense of humour to grasp the meaning of my fairly simplistic writing then you probably shouldn't be putting yourself in the position whereby you'll come to read it.

Further to this, I believe I have personally learn't a valuable lesson in regards to Edinburgh literary fashion: One must wear their head up their arse as opposed to their heart on their sleeve.

Upshot, don't expect any more candid emotional blogging for a while - I'm switching back to my 'out of hours' style where I can abandon the realm of any intellectual depth and stick to chatting shit, smiling vacantly and cracking self-deprecating jokes.

In the end, all experience is just another potential poem and this one is going to be hilarious.



Thursday, 7 October 2010

Please, FTLOG Ignore This...

This post sits astride days like I across the lap of whatever passes for my moral compass at this time in the morning/stage of drunkenness/degree of being stoned as a vole.

Technically I shouldn't even be attempting to write but my arm has been twisted, so I give to you the...*checks clock*...daft past twat musings of a twenty year old girl upon returning from the house of a boy she blatantly - you know what, let's not go into that.

Firstly, the golden syrup sandwich I just made is delicious and secondly; this would be so much easier to achieve if the world wasn't tilting at a forty degree angle...I say forty because I can't recall if numbers are supposed to be hyphenated or not.

I have a question; Fate why are you taunting me?

After so many fucking years of charging me with rounding up all the complete cunts in the world (totally in order to compile a list for future sterilisation) you've seemingly hopped right off that 'bastard stool' and handed me somebody who manages to tick even the most obscure boxes.

[My male ideal came from vampire movies, comic books, fanfiction and one too many Black Lace novels whilst growing up...oh, and Eurotrash so we're drifting rapidly into the realms of 'completely fucking tapped' when attempting to form some kind of compatible companion.]

This is what makes the whole situation so entirely gutting...he's perfect and I'm just not good enough.

It's like the final kick in my metaphorical bollocks.

With that, I'm going to limp into my utterly unmade bed and pray to whoever is listening that I don't have a hangover tomorrow.



The Archetypal 'Pointless' Post...

You can't imagine my joy, on the day in which I'm confined to the lecture hall for the longest consecutive period, when at 11am this morning (whilst I was literally on my way out of the door) my Liberty Flights arrived.

It was a genuinely beautiful moment and, had he not been middle aged and balding, I may have been inclined (in my exuberance) to snog the face off our dear Postie.

Tomorrow marks one week since I exclaimed that I was to give up tobacco, and 24 hours since I actually decided to stick to it - you see these, admittedly slightly inelegant, barrels of flavoursome wonder are brilliant.

Not only will I no longer smell like the wrong end of a tramp's trousers but there is a distinct lack of fucking around with e-cigarettes, just twist and inhale, which means I'm never again to be spotted running between George Square and New College desperately rummaging around in my pockets and subsequently face-planting onto the pavement.

[Obviously, the latter will deprive many of Edinburgh's Hipster populous of their morning quota of laughter but I'm sure they'll catch sight of themselves in something reflective and become suitably distracted.]

Oh dear, I decided at the beginning of this detour I was going to try not to devote another blog to smoking so I'll move briskly on.

I'm feeling a little off at the moment - you see my past seems to be seeping little by little into my present. A number of people I had just about mentally made peace with have re-appeared out of the woodwork like so many itchy, crawly, bitey things and this displeases me greatly...

I have fallen into my own artistic trap it seems.

The act of remembrance is (in theory) simple enough, but I neglected to realise that - being that these people are still very much alive - it cannot be purely on my own terms and eventually they are going to rise up, pop a head round that hypothetical 'door' and throw in their ten cents as to my re-telling of events.

It is inbuilt into me to dislike being told I am wrong, especially by people who I wouldn't cross the road to piss on if they were on fire but as yet, all is quiet from their camp.

They drift on the peripheries of my consciousness and Facebook friends list.

Paranoid delusions or no, I feel it is only a matter of time.



Wednesday, 6 October 2010

Just When You Thought You Were Safe...

It's taken me significantly longer than usual to take to my Netbook and perform what is slowly becoming a daily ritual but I do wish to discuss something with the general populous that has been bothering me all day.

Therefore, trash TV aside and regardless of how comfortable my bed may seem right now I shall endeavor to put this complaint into some kind of coherent (and hopefully short) rant.

On Friday I'll be in Newcastle for my first photo shoot in a good many years and, being somewhat more pierced (and bald) than I was when I began it's safe to assume I will be falling squarely, from this point forward, into the category of 'alternative model'.

This is not a label I take any particular issue with, however it is one which comes bearing a good degree of social stigma and is conducive to sweeping generalisation thanks to websites like Suicide Girls.

Let me be the forerunner here in putting the record straight: to be an alternative model does not necessarily mean I will be a) getting my tits and/or clunge out on camera or b) trussing myself up like a kinky Christmas turkey and squeezing my generous size 10 into any incarnation of fetish wear.

[Just try telling most photographers that without sounding like a prissy cunt.]

Alarmingly a good deal of the mistaken identity of 'alternative modelling' comes from the models themselves who, most likely through a mixture of 'more-hardcore-than-thou' intentions and overwhelming desire to be accepted regardless of modifications, are often more than willing to debase themselves on camera.

At the expense of sounding like the Mummy in the room - that is, quite simply, the way it is.

My personal gripe arises when people try to pass off sexual exploitation as female empowerment - especially, as is becoming ever more apparent, women.

It seems to me that the diligent work of the feminist movement in the 60's and 70's has been utterly quashed and succeeded by some kind of twisted, bastard child of itself centered around the immersion in a rapidly growing raunch culture where success is measured in two ways: 1) how easily you can pretend to be a man and adopt (often exceeding in devotion) the chauvinist mindset or 2) how fully you fulfil the male fantasy ideal.

What was once top shelf, brown paper bag material is now at eye level so that even the youngest of girls is being shown on a daily basis exactly what they are expected to grow up to be should they wish to find any degree of affection.

That is not to say I am prudish, wish to censor the press or have anything against the hypothetical 'reclaiming of the female body' but I do have inherent degrees of decency, a sense of self-respect which I happily extend to all within my gender and a desire to see reclamation done right.

But, I digress.

Since the term was coined 'alternative modelling' was supposed to develop into a nemesis of this bleach blonde, big titted atrocity splayed across our most popular publications but - as happens with all good artistic intent - the money kicks in and suddenly it's black haired, painfully corseted girls doing exactly the same thing except this time they're claiming that they're representing 'the cause'.

'Feel so powerful'.


I'm sorry, what? I couldn't hear you over the sound of all those Internet nerds logging in and tossing off over your latex clad thighs.

I could continue to ramble but instead I suggest you all simply go out and make one purchase; 'Female Chauvinist Pigs' by Ariel'll be no less conflicted after reading it but you may have a little more in your personal outrage arsenal.

As for me, I will be doing the upcoming shoot because I have found a photographer who is understanding and trustworthy. It will be in clothes that make me feel beautiful, on my terms and with no motivation/further use than art for the sake of art.

I'm not claiming to know the answer to the Post-Post Feminist conundrum but firmly hold that it is one not to be ignored.



Tuesday, 5 October 2010

Receiving The Stamp of Sanity...

Genuine conclusions are a rare occurrence - those moments of absolute finality when you can shake hands and walk away, safe in the knowledge you'll never have to talk this person again but secure that there is nothing but the memories respect and friendship to fill the void of physical absence.

I was lucky enough, at 10:30 this morning (massively under slept and more than a little cranky) to experience such an event.

This blog is devoted to Pauline Hogarth, therapist and friend - for saving my life with little more than a smile.

In October of last year, weighing just over 35kg, my family intervened and I was promptly marched to the doctors and subsequently fast-tracked into the care of the specialist eating disorder unit, The Cullen Centre - 1 year, 27kg and a lot of soul-searching later and I have been officially discharged from therapy.

Though I underplay this achievement amongst my friends as simply "Eating a fucking Marsbar and getting over myself", it really has been an long and often arduous journey back from the which I never would have completed had it not been for the ceaseless support of my family and friends.

I have genuinely stretched the boundaries of their patience unto breaking point over the past year and a half; when they embraced me, I struck at them with words and weakened fists, when they spoke kindly to me, I refused to listen or allowed my internal voices to drown out theirs.

In my new found state of sanity, I intend to atone for all the hardships they have suffered at my hands.

There are many out there who are never offered help or simply choose not to seek it out, even some that take the tenuous first steps towards recovery are not lucky enough to be given such respectful and delicate care as I received at The Cullen Centre and for that I feel blessed.

The woman who walked out of Morningside today was not the girl who went in so many months ago - in some respects I still can't comprehend how or why I did this to myself but am contented with simply being alive.

There will undoubtedly be hardships in my future and, despite facing down this particular demon I am still running - one day I hope to decipher exactly who I am running to.



Monday, 4 October 2010

Sell-Out, Moi?

Today I took another small step towards selling my soul to the 21st century.

In the early hours of this morning sometime between my umpteenth vodka & coke, some barefoot dancing to dubstep and reaching the end of another deck of cigarettes I loudly declared that I was to give up smoking.

There were witnesses.

So, as these thing undoubtedly go, I was accosted by my flatmate as soon as I regained enough coherence to part with money and we began the long trawl round the Internet to find the best alternative to the 'real deal'.

Our search quickly turned up a fantastic little company Blu who manufacture the most sleek, stylish and down right gorgeous electronic cigarettes, with cartridges available in a number of different flavours and colours...they don't ship outside the US.

After this bombshell and a few more hours of fruitless rooting, I had reached the stage of running to the nearest corner shop when Pixel (the aforementioned flatmate) called me through to his room - we'd had a breakthrough.

Not only had he found a fucking pink e-cigarette but the range of flavours were absolutely astounding. I quickly handed over my cash and a to this moment am grinning silently to myself whilst contemplating the possibilities, especially with winter setting in, of actually being able to smoke indoors especially when said cigarette tastes like peanut butter.


Outside of this the only thing of interest to report is as follows; apparently something I read on a bathroom wall in Henry's last night caused me enough offence to warrant a page of free verse which I give to you now, as it was found on my laptop this morning, unedited and utterly confusing:

“Don't be a bastard.
Be nice and it'll all work out.”
I mean, fuck, what's that even about?
Mate, I'm all for a little philosophy,
Freedom of expression,
Degrees of decency but
You seriously expect me
Petulant, pissant prodigy,
Veritable walking catastrophe,
To be sweet as pie?
Slap on that beguiling smile and
Kitten eyes whilst inside
A silent fire rages.
Excuse me whilst I flip you off,
Screaming “Screw these amateur sages!”
Filling up walls like pages
Turning stalls into confessional cages.
Dearest socialite scribe,
Next time you take pen to plaster or
Adopt the affectation of
Pseudo-psychic newscaster:
Give me naff jokes,
Drunken exclamations, salutations,
Crudely drawn cocks and
Their witty 'appreciation'.
It's not that I'm ungrateful or
Inherently hateful and I really do try
To play nice...most of the time but
Colour me crazy if when I sit down to pee
I don't much fancy a commentary
On my already dubious morality.



Sunday, 3 October 2010

The Morning After The Night Before...

I am, for all intents and purposes, still drunk.

As such I am dwelling in the pleasant numbness between meaning what you say and being unable to express it, and being unable to mean what you say and expressing it anyway.

It is this state of verbal limbo - coupled with a inherent inability to use an 'indoor voice' ensuring everybody gets clear reception - that often gets me into the most trouble and, once again, it has not failed me.

[Those who choose to take the few minutes out of their day to read this may have already noticed that I'm being remarkable vague - admittedly this is due in part to the delicate nature of my subject but overall a smokescreen behind which I can slowly begin hammering the dents out of my pride.]

So now, as I sit at my computer licking my wounds, I cannot help but be drawn back to one question; What the hell was I thinking?

This can be applied to any number of separate incidents last night or equally act as an all-encompassing expression of why Annie should never drink Jaeger Bombs after reading early 19th Century adventure novels...

Let me expand that point with the responsible quotation;

"The thought involuntarily pressed on her, that she herself must venture, were it but the point of her fairy foot, beyond the prescribed boundary, if she ever hoped to give a lover so reserved and bashful an opportunity of so slight a favour as but to salute her shoe-tie". Scott, The Talisman

The moment my verbal boundaries begin to blur, and I am allowed to roam within the unsuspecting public loose-lipped, locked and loaded, is also the point at which reality wiggles itself out of my grasp and suddenly I become an astoundingly delusional (but admittedly incredibly fun) mess.

Unfortunately, despite the predictability of my own actions, the company I will be in when it deigns to happen is a wild card and this time I got the Knave of Hearts.

Which brings me back to Scott (via tenuous links steeped in symbolism - go do your research) and how in some way or another, because he's dead and therefore an ideal opponent for argument, this is all his fault.



Saturday, 2 October 2010

On Literary Growing Pains...

When I was little it was a common occurrence for me to appear (quite literally) in the middle of an adult conversation and, like some pint-sized dominatrix, demand that the group stop talking and listen to me...right now.

In the 15 or so years since, not much has changed - except I'm able to look most people of average height in the nose rather than the knees - I have even discovered it's equally as difficult to be taken seriously when people are addressing you in baby talk as it is when you grow a pair of breasts.

I am a woman with the overwhelming desire to speak, but that's not quite right.

I am a woman with the overwhelming desire to be heard.

Despite a partial lifetime of getting my, admittedly slightly grating, Mancunian drawl forcibly down the ears of anybody within a few hundred metre radius it is only in these past few months that the payoff for my 'hit it 'till it breaks' approach is making itself known.

Last night I had my first taste of creative responsibility and it both warmed my heart and scared the living shit out of me.

Cantankerous radical and notorious critic, Harold Bloom (who I always had trouble ploughing through in an academic context) sprung to mind in the early hours of this morning. In 'Anxiety of Influence', sometime before your brain completely switches channels, he writes that "Poetry (Romance) is Family Romance".

Admittedly, the man was a few clowns short of a circus and haplessly obsessed with Freud but this one snippet of theory began to make blinding sense - in the same way that we can't take a lover without embracing their family, friends or house pets a poet/poem can never be truly autonomous. They must be read one into the next and so on and so forth.

Therefore in both the act of decreeing myself as 'Poet', producing works (with gusto) and eventually influencing the writing of others I have inadvertently stumbled into a position where I hold not only the weight of somebodies literary future but also a rich past of my peers and betters.

If my insecurity was not now at it's peak then the addition of a phone call, just received, telling me Gary Bushell wants to see me perform has sent my day free falling into blind panic.

Let us hope only this, that my anxiety be realised in some act of dubious genius and not drunken frivolity.



Friday, 1 October 2010

The Obligatory 'First Post'...

Crippling social anxiety aside; I have always been drastically inept at 'starting things'.

It's possibly some lingering after effect, a residue of the hopeless romantic I once was, that causes me to cling so desperately to the idea that if a 'beginning' isn't preceded by a series of suitably grandiose omens then it's not worth the effort.

The strange occurrences of today have not been of a heavens opening or choirs of angels variety but were - to my older and wiser self - of no less significance and it is by their persistent hand that I come to be sat here at my computer.

It starts, therefore, with a particular scent.

Patchouli oil.

Quite possibly the Marmite of incense - I personally wasn't able to stand the stuff until late 2006 and have never been known to burn it in my own flat (despite the remarks that my room "Smells like a ponce's boudoir".)

Yet today, as though greeting an old friend, I welcomed its assault on my nostrils and revelled in the cloud that accompanied me throughout the entirety of my lectures...

Those with their wits about them will not hesitate to point out it likely originated in the copious number of New Age stores that line my route, or the hoards of their patrons shuffling in my shadow but regardless of this, the memories invoked are more than enough intervention to spur me into getting off my arse and putting my internal ramblings to a more secure medium.

You see, patchouli oil will always be associated with the aforementioned year; I was 16.

A mere few months out of Oriel Bank School for Girls and into college sporting my shaven head, inappropriately high New Rocks and a perpetual roll-up behind heavily pierced ears. It was the time during which I reigned over 'smokers wall' with a sharp tongue and open legs, the occupant of the latter being one Zakk Nuttall.

He was the college bad boy, but to this day I think he was simply cute as a button.

A practicing Pagan, like myself (I was raised that way - this is not a bandwagon claim), he was older, with a mohawk, drink problem and a leather jacket which he treated with Patchouli. He ticked all the boxes laid out in the rapidly expanding mind of a would-be goth girl.

In those six months he reconnected me with a spirituality I had lost respect for, introduced me to drugs, kinky sex, sitting academic examinations drunk, tried to give me an exorcism (seriously) and taught me that fucking over peoples [ex]girlfriends is fine so long as you're wasted.

In short; the man made me a total bitch. He broke my heart. I got over it.

To the point of the matter, however...he was boyfriend number two, only four years ago and genuinely that brief description is about the extent of my immediate memory.

Sure, I could dredge up some anecdotes from the recesses of my mind after a drink or twelve but these day I'm never quite sure if I'm getting my dates right, hell, I'm not even convinced it's the right boyfriend most of the time.

You see, these moments that I swore I would never forget, could never be topped, will never be relived...they're slipping away from me at a disturbing pace and as I hurtle forwards into a future I'm not ready for it's that trail of breadcrumbs I'm going to need.

To starting something, or finishing something - I'm not sure.