It's been a miserable summer so far, hasn't it? (For those experiencing coiderably better weather than me, the answer I'm looking for is yes). I went to Brighton for a couple of days with a friend, and it nothing except rain and blow a gale during the day, and bake during the night. Of course, this meant we had to keep the windows open to stay cool, and in Brighton, the gulls are at their most active at night. One actually landed on the sill and screamed into our room.
I'm amazed at the inanity of the news about our new prime minister and his (mixed result) foreign diplomacy. A few days ago I heard a wonderful news report on the radio- Our Prime Minister enjoyed a hot dog with the Mayor of New York City. The Mayor had mustard on his, whilst Cameron had his plain.
My first thought was "Great, they're human. When they start eating human hearts and devouring placentas, then give me a call. Until then, FIND SOME NEWS!"
My second thought was "Only mustard? No onions? No other embellishments? What kind of American is he?"
I could picture the follow up to that award-winning story- "We discovered a Cabinet Minister enjoying a full English breakfast at his local cafe. He enjoyed his eggs over-east, and sprinkled black pepper on his grilled tomatoes."
Before I present chapter 5 (which has actually been ready for some time, I just haven't been bothering to post. Don't worry, I've already slapped my wrist), I will furnish you with yet more information about myself. That way, when I'm famous, I can hold a jousting tournament to see who wants to write my biography badly enough.
- I have a tea cupboard. No matter if I'm running out of food, this cupboard is always well stocked with nearly ten varieties of tea, both leaf and bag. Lots of Twinings, and lots of Whittards of Chelsea (that store will be the death of me). I've just furnished the cupboard with three tubs of their instant teas so I can make ice tea without the fuss of steeping leaves in cold water overnight.
- I heard once someone say that sarcasm was the first line of defence for the insecure. Not so with myself. It's about the third line. My first line is the moat I dug around my house on money pilfered from my neighbours. I'm so close to being elected MP.
- Yesterday someone said "If Mike doesn't know the answer, then there probably isn't one." It's amazing how much bullshit people will accept as truth.
- On a related note, I study Kung Fu. Specifically the Path of the Bull. It's a rather verbal style that leaves a nasty smell.
- My housemates and I had a lodger who left for the Middle East recently. When I told him I was going back up to t'North, he said "say hi to Meadowhall for me." Taking his word probably more literally than I ought to have, I did. 27 of the 30 shopkeepers I bothered talking to didn't know who he was, or why he wanted to say hi. The other three smiled, nodded and said "bye now" in a rather condescending tone.
- We have a cow a few hundred metres behind the house who won't shut up. I'm not bothered by it, but she wakes up my housemates at 4am. Lovely.
- The reason I'm not bothered by it, is because I can sleep through anything. I slept through the largest earthquake Lincolnshire had suffered in living memory, my housemates having a party, and my own alarms, including my housemates shaking me to tell me to turn my bloody alarms off. My parents tell me that when I was very young, I slept through fireworks displays, and feeding time at the Howler Monkey enclosure at Twycross Zoo.
- This week I've been asked strange questions, most notably- "Are you German? Because you look German." (by a Spanish girl I had been speaking English to).
- I've also learned something- the separation bags we were forced to use at work because we ran out of regular bags for the samples, burn very quickly. We discovered this when a new girl set fire to an alcohol wipe and dropped it in a tub full of said bags (accidentally, of course. At least, I didn't hear her manical laughter). The flames were three feet high in 12 seconds.
- My work place is going to force me to wear a beard net. Beats shaving, I suppose.
- I comb my beard. Everytime I have to check to make sure I'm not about to erradicate a new species of tiny monkey that may have spontaneously popped into existence while I wasn't looking.
- In front of me now, is my computer. Oh, and a jug of iced tea, my phone several letters, bus and train tickets that really need throwing away, scraps of paper, a plier-mulitool, a can of second skin, and for some reason yet to be discovered, a can opener.
- Everyone has an OCD. Mine is picking up slips of useless bit of paper, and tearing them into perfectly straight, ever shrinking strips of paper. Then, I stack the strips to make sure they are as straight as they could possibly be. Then, after all that effort, I tear them into confetti. The neatest damned confetti you'll ever see.
- My feet are UK size 14, US 15 and EU 49. I have to go downstairs sideways, otherwise my gargantuan feet don't fit on the stair properly, and at speed I slip.
- I own 5 stainless steel mugs for the sole purpose that no-one can break them unless they really want to.
- I suffer what The Times called 'Bibliomania' (when they were pointing how easy it was to make up a random mental illness based on the newest version of the DSM). A few days ago, I walked past a bookshop, thinking- "You've got plenty of books, you don't need any more. Just keep walking." And I did, I sailed past the bookstore. I was really proud of myself, until I stopped for a coffee and realised I had in my hands a bag with the bookshop's logo, and three books inside. I didn't even realise I'd been in. Oops.
Load of bollocks. Taken down for a complete overhaul. 9th July 2013
And so- there it is. Chapter 7 is still half way done, because it is being written from scratch rather than being mostly amalgamated from paragraphs written during my 'write whatever pops into your head' phase. It also introduces The General, mentioned in chapter 3. Although he's an old character to me, I'm having trouble fitting his personality into the setting, in the way many people complain about having nothing to do when they retire.
Ah well, until next time,
Mike 'pleasegoddontlettherebeanotherfireohchristIshouldnthavesaidthatcanIsmellburning' Barlow