Thursday, December 30, 2004

December 17 (Friday): Dream: I am at the Arts Centre and it is summer. The place looks how it did back in the day when Gringo started out and Hirameka played their first gigs there. Today however, NIRVANA are playing there! And it is Sub Pop Nirvana, a sparse show of shitty ratty equipment but sounding fucking awesome despite this. The only person I recognise there is Emma and I wind up hugging and snogging her. What????

After the last night/early hours, I wake up late at 10AM, pretty bad for me as I never lie in usually and currently, in my state of unemployment, I do not feel I deserve to be so lazy.

I get up to check my phone and the text message inbox on my mobile is full and showing a message waiting. This is without doubt a reply from Sara to my 3AM text this morning replying to her 2.30AM text (night owls). I make space in the inbox for the text and wait with baited breath.

Today my sole intention is to get to my parents and show my face, hopefully getting a lot of writing done in the process (they have a computer desk which makes writing a lot more comfortable and fruitful than just bending my back over at the end of my bed). I pull my shit together but it takes an eternity to get myself together, I was hoping to get to Holland almost first thing but the way things are moving today, I’ll be fortunate to get there before supper.

I have my tunes on Media Player on random and mid morning up pops Grounded by Pavement. Wow; “doctor’s leaving for the holiday system”, in some ways for me (perverse way) this is the most holiday/Christmas record going. This used to be my soundtrack in 1995 when I was living in Walton, working in Clacton and driving up to Colchester for shops. Wowee Zowee was the record that was playing in my cassette deck when I smashed my first car up a week before Christmas in 1995. The track playing upon impact was Father To A Sister Of Thought, which pretty much mentally scarred/scared me away from listening to that record again for several years.

Lunchtime arrives and with it, today’s Cheers re-run. And this episode is extra freaky as it features a cameo from John Kerry (yup, the loser John Kerry) at the beginning of the show. All through the election I found myself thinking how much John Kerry looked like Ted Danson and there here he is (ten years ago) making an appearance on his show. Freaky.

I watch Ed (more daytime TV I now find myself addicted to) and I fly home for a weekend visit (just as Acton is trying to contact/get me on MSN). I was originally intending/supposed to arrive at home pretty swiftly this morning but instead I wind up arriving closer to 3PM. And when I arrive, mum blatantly in a fucking hump/mood. Great, I love a house with an atmosphere.

I go to computer and come across a rough draft of a letter dad is sending to his “employer”, some Mickey Mouse outfit. It reads really badly and only continues on the current bad feelings vibe that Dad is having towards the family members that he works with. He should have asked me to help out on the letter methinks. Maybe Dad has been watching The Sopranos too much and taking it too seriously. My bad.

Regardless, fortunately/luckily I get into writing and actually find myself being productive as I hide away in the room with the computer to avoid the feuding partners (although fortunately Dad is out at my cousin’s house helping out and Mum is getting her hairdo do done). When Dad finally comes in, he is a right miserable cunt. The pair of us sit down to dinner and it is absolutely excruciating, all eaten/done in next to silence.

My aunt calls around at the house to drop off Christmas cards etc and I finally have my second card of the season. She however does not ring the door bell to speak or anything, so I suspect there is another relative I have pissed off. When I pick up the cards there is also a video cassette of the X-Factor final, someone somewhere in my family must enjoy this shit. Sadly however the label on the video reads “X-Facture”. Ouch.

My phone beeps and finally it is the text arriving from Haslett (Sara) from this morning. It reads: “Money money. I was right. After all you so wrongly called me its a well deserved PRICK for you.” What? She was right? Right about? I dunno but unfortunately I was also right in thinking she would not turn up after everyone who I told about the show were also proved right when they said she would not turn up/go, and after all the defending of her I did in disagreeing with them. I don’t know about being a prick but definitely a chump.

Mum comes in a little later with hair job done and as per usual it looks silly and hilarious. She tells/informs me now that they do not have to pay the tax credit £7,000 immediately, something I had been really worrying about. Whatever.

The evening happens with Dad tucked/hiding away in the front room watching football. At 9.30 the new Little Britain comes on and I find myself having to watch it in the kitchen. This is the episode with the Mr T lookalike who is oblivious to the existence of Mr T in the first place. It is funny as fuck and I think my laughing at it pisses off the old man as he probably thinks that mum and I are having a laugh at him. See, paranoia runs in my family.

Tonight once more I have to sleep on the sofa, which is something (as I’ve said before) I am no longer capable of doing. And because the olds are arguing over the dog, I get the little fucker sleeping in the front room with me. It starts off well as he tucks up with me on the sofa but when I wake up around 2AM and I have accidentally left the TV on watching Monday Night Raw, the dog decides he is too hot for the sofa and jumps on the floor whining like fuck, wanting to be sleeping elsewhere. I have to mess about with him to shut him and it takes an eternity to get him settled into his basket but eventually around 4AM, I manage to do so. Can’t sleep.

np: Pavement - Grounded

Wednesday, December 29, 2004

December 16 (Thursday): Dream: I have the woman at Acme personnel asking me about the reasons pertaining to my current unemployment. Upon telling her that it was dismissal, akin to the Acme, scenario she tells me that she will unable to represent me in my job. From there I find myself hanging out with Dad, two people with too much time on their hands. Eventually we wind up in the Cheers bar! And Dad has the Sam Malone role. Oh my, I am watching far too much daytime TV.

I wake up past 9PM. Oh dear, I’m getting lazy but at the same time outside its still bitter dark. Another day, another stinging headache, don’t let it be told/believed that being unemployed is a doss.

I call Acme with regards to last weeks interview, the one I doubt I got as I was being told at the place I was overqualified for (which I agree with). I speak to the guy and the feedback isn’t necessarily good. Apparently my CV and my test results obviously scored high but apparently in the interview I am came over as too laid back. Oh dear, that old chestnut is rearing its head once more. I suspect the comments are fair, as the interview was by no means intensive or professional and the tests I were given to do were for elements of the job I learned in my first year of accountancy, so already jaded from coming out of nightmare exams, it was a pretty difficult interview to be gung ho about, especially when being interviewed by an old college acquaintance probably younger than me who I would imagine would see my as a real threat to her own job. And apparently seeing the Christine woman went against me as my comment about her “giving me grief and winding me up”, dry as it was, was only misinterpret (in the interviewers favour?) as negative. Would someone really expect me to rationally make a comment such as to jeopardise my career chances? Sadly however, over our phonecall, I fail to find the words. I’m beat.

Today I don’t go out during the daytime, there doesn’t seem much point. I write during the day, it gets me through and is productive at the same time. Good times.

In preparation for tonight’s English class, this afternoon I actually bother to tidy/clean myself and I have a nice long bath etc. I also finally pull out the Raymond Chandler Papers book and I read that in the bath. It actually turns out to be a really good read/book, not least because I suddenly discover a whole new/different side to Chandler, almost Bukowski-eqse and the icing on the cake is when I discover that he was an accountant before he became a writer. He the man.

As I get ready for class, I realise I have forgotten to brush my teeth and when I grab my toothbrush and scrub in a hurry, I only manage to proceed and ram my toothbrush up the roof of my mouth, severely bashing my gums. It hurts like shit.

And then just as I am one foot out of the day, I get cold called by some Asian woman (they’re always Asian!) trying to selling me a phoneline (Toucan?). Right now, I’m not a very good person to be cold calling: firstly I am unemployed with no money and secondly I don’t speak to many people in the daytime, so I’ll listen to your call but won’t buy anything, instead get really sarcastic with the caller for my own amusement.

I get to class and today we look at diaries and journals. Teacher calls me “you Blogger you” and asks me if I regret what has happened. I tell her “the jury is still out”, really tripping over my words in embarrassment in the process. I say “I had an interview last week but they said I was “too laid back” which probably means they thought I was a stoner” which makes Rob (Ipswich Rob) laugh. I get my homework handed back (the asylum seeker letter) and I’ve got an A- for it. Yes! Another winning grade.

One of the diaries we look at is Tony Benn’s which makes me think back to when Hirameka played Marxism and I got dragged into that shambles of an event and how listening to Tony Benn was one of the most boring things any of us have/had ever done and how it was all tied up/surrounded in pretension and pomposity. The thing with Socialists is that they think they are the ones making history and changing things. We also move onto the diary/journal by some famous modern day American writer and suddenly it is fascinating contrasting so many different diaries/journals and I find myself comparing each and everyone of them to my Blog and only coming to the conclusion that I don’t think mine compares very favourably. We then also move on to Bridget Jones’s Diary, which I haven’t read but the extract makes it sound really good and readable. We also read an Alan Bennett Talking Heads piece which is really great also. The class ends on an absolute high. As the teacher gets us all brainstorming ideas for a story (and the guy keeps making comments/scoffs at my suggestions) the teacher gets my Sopranos reference when she asks me “what job does the man have” and I pause and say “Waste Management Consultant” and she pops “Sopranos, like it” while the guy remarks “does that mean he’s of shit?” with the reference obviously flying well over his zebra-male head whereas Rob (Ipswich Rob) goes “Sopranos, cool!”. This class rules.

I don’t bother with any post-college shopping this week, instead I just pop into the chip shop next to college and buy a portion of self pity chips, a feast for any man. I get home and begin scoffing them whilst also texting the ill Emma about this week’s class and Christmas homework and calling home to speak to mum for a state of the union address.

By now, its beginning to get late and around midnight Tom hops on MSN and begins telling me his female related woes and once more I act like an unmarried marriage counsellor, so best never (ever) listen to my advice. I do often however see many parallels in Tom’s and my own experiences but we always seem to take completely different directions in our choices, I seem to kill my efforts at birth whereas Tom carries on in his efforts and often at least gets “some” before things go tits up (something I insulate far far too much).

At past midnight I begin watching the extras on the special edition Reservoir Dogs DVD and the extras are really cool, not least the interview with the guy that played Marvin Nash. Chris Penn also comes over really too. I do however fall asleep watching it.

At 2.33AM I am awoken by my phone beeping next to my head (seems I sleep with my phone) and it is a text from Haslett (Sara!). She says “Know was twat. Not going 2 try and b a good person but i can tell you had major family drama was bad but if u knew half of it u would excuse my actions sorry x”. It pisses me off that she wakes me up but it REALLY pisses me off that she doesn’t actually give me anything to work, anything that will make me understand and sympathetic to her plight, especially considering despite my actions I really really do care about her and I thought she might be someone special and meeting up with her this Christmas was going to be THE thing that saved Christmas for me after all the recent shitty events, work and exam related. Ultimately though, I can’t have such feelings for someone who obviously does not have them back. The text smells/tastes of a bout of guilt and at this hour can only be alcohol and/or drug fuelled. I’m no longer angry over the incident, just sad and now just afraid of losing more money in another naïve bout of foolishness. And with that in mind, I make a point of texting her back at this hour, to wake up her right back and I just text “we need to settle up first”. I doubt I could be any more clinical or cold. Here’s another person I really really have true feelings for and I only know that it can only serve to burn/hit/hurt me hard.

Awake now, I go back to the Reservoir Dogs DVD but then I see Acton come online at an ungodly hour (3AM) and he is jacked, absolutely shitfaced. Turns out that he has just got back in from the Suede reunion (or at least Anderson and Butler) and he got to go to the aftershow with free hooch. Nice, have a good time all the time.

np: Jane’s Addiction – Then She Did

December 15 (Wednesday): This morning I awaken around 4AM, wide awake, unable to sleep, unable to make safe, sense and secure of things. I keep think about my Job Centre appointment yesterday, the whole surrealistic drama of it.

After many minutes deliberation, I wind up putting on the Bad Lieutenant on DVD. When the movie eventually ends and Harvey Keitel gets his brains blown out outside Madison Square Garden and the Abel Ferrara song kicks in, I turn off the movie to realise the hour of 6.30 and pretty much accept morning has broken. I wake up to hear some nut cases in Greece have taken a bus hostage. I roll my eyes and attempt to go back to sleep.

I re-emerge around 9.30 with yet another sledgehammer headache/migraine, what’s that; five days running? Today the days have finally moulded into one and I find myself at points wondering what day of the week it is (I actually swear at one point it is Friday). Things are getting desperate.

I’m falling down the slippery slope now of watching and getting into daytime TV. I really should not be watching the T4 Christmas schedule (chock full of repeats of shows I have already seen), Cheers “classics” (more repeats of shows I have already seen) or the quirky US drama show called Ed, especially as it’s executive producer is David Letterman.

In order to break from this routine, I enter into proper unemployed chav mode by picking up the Playstation but when I find myself unable to beat Shawn Michaels as Bret Hart on the latest WWF game, I feel like throwing the machine out of the window as I only discover yet another area that I am a failure in.

MSN thankfully snaps me out of my lull when a few friends come online, finding desperate and in need of human contact. Acton tells me how today is his Christmas Do at the BBC and I feel gutted as I get reminded of how I am missing out on my Christmas meal this year, it always tastes SO good. Coogan (Tom) is also online but he ain’t responding. He’s been kinda curt to me lately, I suspect I may have done something to upset and piss him off. Tom later pops up and we’re cool.

I head out for lunch late afternoon, heading towards Stanway and Sainsburys. Whenever I go to Sainsburys I always seem to do/perform the work session of shopping of the least healthiest food going. And today I add to my groceries the Quentin Tarantino boxset, which only costs £16 for 6 discs compared to when I bought Reservoir Dogs without any extras years ago for £20. Ouch.

As I queue at the checkout, I get stuck behind a real gimp. This man has a fucking bumbag tied over his crotch, is dressed like a tramp and buying about six boxes of hair mouse/gel in one go. And then he argues the toss over the fact that they fail to automatically give him the 2 for 1 discount. No wonder the guy is out shopping in the daytime and isn’t at work: he’s a moron! When I finally get around to being served, I am super efficient and done within the seconds. I look at the girl on the checkout who apologises profusely for the hold up and I realise despite being the size of a house, she is actually really pretty. I make small talk and work and it, unfortunately, turns out to be the only real human contact I get today. And boy was I good, the world seems a good place once again.

The afternoon sails by and soon turns into the evening. I spend the afternoon writing with the occasional MSN interruption by Tom and/or Richard. And this is the routine that spills into and consumes the evening.

The highlight of my day turns out to be when I receive interview questions back from The Go! Team, which come really unexpected as that band is going to be fucking huge next year. Spice world!

I (probably) fall asleep watching Arrested Development only to wake up shortly past midnight with Basquiat on TV, which I really attempt to re-awaken for but it turns out a futile task. I also check my phone and there is a text. Sara? No, it turns to be from Phoebe replying to something or other that I asked earlier in the day. In her words “nite nite”.

np: Funkadelic – Nappy Dugout

December 14 (Tuesday): For the fourth day/morning running I wake up with a headache. The time is 8.30ish and the will is not there. I find myself at the bottom of the wishing dwell.

I find I can’t pull myself out of bed (can’t be arsed) and the T4 Christmas TV only allows me to stay pinned in bed as I’ll happily watch shit like Futurama and The Chancers when I’m in this flip state of mind.

With those out of the way, I finish off watching Tape and it actually turns out a hell of a lot better than I had realised and it actually serves to gee me up a bit and get me going. Wahey.

Today turns out to be the first day of my unemployment in which I suffer really severe cabin fever, I wake up feeling exhausted from nothing along with the obligatory headache all pretty much rendering me useless and hopeless.

Luckily though I have an obligation to leave the house today, which is to go to the Job Centre and sign on. And it had better be good because I turned down seeing Alan Moore interviewing Brian Eno for this. I get my little unemployment diary and fill in the details and dates of my interviews blah blah blah and set off out for/to town. Once more, I get the short guy filling in forms on the computer screen. And this week he has his mate in a wheelchair with him, who rubs me up the wrong way when he picks out our “work diaries” and goes “lets see what we have here” in a pretty impersonal tone. And then amusingly as they fill in the forms with regards to myself, they talk between themselves as if I were not there. Fortunately due to Christmas, it will be a month before I get interrogated by the SS again. God I want a job.

I’m beginning to hate town in the daytime, it is full of losers wandering around town with no place to go. As I walk back to my car to get the hell out of dodge and back to the safety of my home, I see Steve Whitton (ex-Col U manager) who appears to still be knocking about town. I then also see someone I used to go to school with sucking his thumb as he passes me called Adam (I’ll conveniently forget his surname was Dowson), which pretty much sums up the desperation of the day. As I get to my car, I see another car and it has the number plate AY51LUW which I have to double take because when I first read it, it looks like “asylum” to me.

When home, I read the Sun and some smoke has done a stitch up article on going to the New Den and watching Millwall play. The man claims it all to be thoroughly racist and offensive. He appears to take offence at the fact that people aren’t coming up to him and talking and hanging out. Jesus Christ, this is a football match, people just don’t do that, hell when I go up to Millwall on my own I feel intimidated and sit on my own, its part of the parcel. And then the idiot man writer claims Millwall fans seig heil, something I have never seen. God, an idiot like this gets two pages to wax lyrical in the most read newspaper in the country. Grief.

In the evening, Dad pops up on MSN and he tells me how he has been watching The Sopranos and enjoying it. Cool, I have been trying to get him to watch it for ages, finally we have something else to talk about other than football.

np: Buscemi – The Salon Suite

December 13 (Monday): I wake up with a headache. I feel somewhat better today about things and today is the first clear day I have had since I got shafted by BS to actually get some stuff done. And the intention is to have a day of writing. This however gets interrupted by a repeat of Chancers on Channel Four but aside from that, I actually manage to really get into writing and actually getting some done.

I find myself, yet again, another bear with a sore head this morning until Azmei texts me with “Merry Christmas”. My first seasons greetings of the year (perhaps) and they come from a Muslim. That’s the magic of Christmas!

I potter about on the PC all morning, attempting to write, attempting to find a job online, attempting to find a life.

For a third day I continue to hassle Haslett (Sara). I really promised myself that I wouldn’t but now my mood has swung somewhat, I’m now semi intrigued at finding out what on earth happened and fully interested in attempted to blag some money (reparation) back from her.

I attempt calling her and now suddenly her phone is finally ringing again. At 2.38PM, on a fourth attempt of the latest set of rings, she answers and snaps wearily “what?”. Stunned by the response (and the bint actually fucking answering the phone in the first place) I go “what’s up?” and she goes, whispering, “I can’t talk right now, family stuff”. I shake my head in further disbelief, speechless. She adds “I’ll call you later when I can talk” and I go “yeah do, you're making me act lairy”. And the call ends, about ten seconds in length. I think that was perhaps the first time I had spoken to her on the phone and she wasn’t fucking pissed. I immediately know/realise she ain’t phoning me back but at least it feels like some kind of minimal closure to at least touched base with her.

In late afternoon I begin watching Tape on DVD. I have had this knocking about for months and finally I am getting around to watching it, which kind of shows my enthusiasm for watching it. Its very wordy and really not the sort of thing I am into this evening. It sends me to sleep.

The rest of the day flies by relatively eventless and in the evening there is (for some reason) a really great programme about Richard Linklater on Channel Four. And it doesn’t even get ruined by a real tool presenting the show. Its interesting to see the star from Dazed And Confused has chubbed up and turned his back on the movie world. Still, he was the main guy in Waking Life having the dream. He sits being interviewed and I notice he is wearing a Blogger t-shirt. I must have one of those.

After that, I get into some MSN with Marceline as we discuss the end of year poll on Diskant for music and movies. Its all good.

Mum bravely phones again tonight and things are a bit better tonight and I feel apologetic and bad, trying everything I have to convince her that I am all right.

Richard gets me again on MSN and asks me if I want to meet him in London tomorrow because he has tickets to see Alan Moore interview Brian Eno. That actually sounds really really cool but tomorrow I have to sign on at the Job Centre. I tell him I’ll see what I can do.

Once again at the dead night, for a second night running I am wide eyed into the early hours and tonight I happen across a documentary on BBC1 where they are analysing Ron Atkinson and his comments and questioning whether he is racist. I wouldn’t have chosen to watch this programme and it turns out to be the sort of nonsense you would expect as crazy liberals make mountains out of molehills and condemn Atkinson as being a worse person than he is, which is a fucking stupid big gob bastard. Sticks and stones and all that, get over it, the man is now next to unemployable, I think he has suffered enough punishment in lost earnings without actually harming anybody in the process..

np: Donovan - Colors

December 12 (Sunday): Today I wake up with the most steaming headache/migraine, the kind that feels like a tumour and generally rests itself right behind my right eye making it feel as if it is spewing out blood. Today I really want to stay in bed for the duration and basically lick my wounds as my mental pain/toll eases after the latest let down.

I find myself in a state of disbelief, how could I have been so stupid yet again, this just being the latest in/of a long line of people to take me for a ride. And I worry myself over my reaction to it but console myself that I think that is just how/what Haslett would have done were the tables reversed.

I go fishing for sympathy (sometimes I’m not proud) and I go whinging to Azmei, texting to her my moans and pointing out that “this is the exact same that happened with Lindsey”. Well, its not really the exact thing but pretty similar/close. Just texts a couple of times with a certain/limited amount sympathy but basically I’m fishing in the wrong pond her.

I lie in bed contemplative and verging on the philosophical, all that pathetic stuff that goes through a person’s mind after something bad happens to them and they’re (in their minds) totally blameless. And it easy to do, you can just lie in bed and mass debate the day away, you don’t even have to lift a finger as mentally you put the world to rights and not only that, for your experience you now find yourself a stronger person (what doesn’t kill you can only make you stronger etc) and a stronger willed, more determined person than before. And all whilst lying on your arse doing nothing. Pretty pathetic.

Watching a download of one of the Martin Scorsese Blues series helps me to snap out of things, this episode being the one where Chuck D tracks down the origins of Muddy Waters’ Electric Mud record. This is the first episode of these documentaries and I hope they’re all as good as this one, it is fantastic.

In order to prevent becoming half a stalker, I vowed to myself that I wouldn’t text or phone Haslett today but fuck it, that goes out of the window when I manage to wind myself up over things again by thinking about them too much and I set about attempting to phone her and occasionally texting her again (albeit a bit calmed down now). It appears that she still has her phone switched/turned off. I hope it has caused her to miss many important phone calls in the process of her avoiding me.

I head out and go to Tesco Hythe where I food it up. Today I really fancy some hot chocolate and I discover that they (Nestle) now make Lion’s Bar drinking chocolate. Yes! And it tastes as awesome as you would imagine.

I get home to watch some Disney kids movie called Heavyweights just because it has Ben Stiller in it and the kid from Pete And Pete (Clem, Little Pete’s mate). The film also briefly features the awesome Jerry Stiller (Ben’s dad) but ultimately it is pre-fame Ben Stiller and therefore shit. That deserves a nasty text to Sara methinks.

Due to my lack of sleep during last nights disturbed night, I get so much needed shut eye.

Sunday at 6PM occurs and it’s the Simpsons, the show that will save any mood any day. Tonight is the grifting episode, which will always make me laugh.

In the evening Richard MSNs and asks me how it went with “My Smelly Valentine”. Like a chump I tell him how the wind blows and I feel like such a loser/chump in the process, describing all that happened and its fucking aftermath.

The night ends with me listening to Hunter S. Thompson MP3s and suddenly I feel inspired and rejuvenated, my god it didn’t take me long to get over the Sara situation did it?

On TV is more Christmas stuff with the movies Bring It On followed by Bullitt but I’m too hyper to bother watching either of them, instead I actually manage to dig/fly into some writing for the first time all weekend. I get a buzz on.

Well past midnight and I eventually turn in, putting on the Fear And Loathing DVD and watching it into the early hours.

np: Decahedron – No Carrier

Tuesday, December 28, 2004

first Christmas card of 2004

December 11 (Saturday): Today personally September 11th turns into December 11th for me as I experience some kind of personal disaster (exaggeration-a-go-go). If ever it is wondered why I can be such a mean spirited, miserable, people hating bastard, then it should referred days like these.

As much as experience teaches, I remain horribly naïve and hopefully that human race is not as self serving as all facts add up to it being. It seems every time I reach out and place some faith in people, those are the moments that I get burned the most.

Cutting to the chase, today is/was supposed to be the big day that I finally get to see a West End show and that I hook up with Sara (Haslett) after a year and a half and finally see her again. However to quote Hunter S. Thompson: “you can turn your back on a person but never turn your back on a drug” and when I wake up this morning, we have still not touched base or made arrangements and things look bleak.

The day does begin/start healthily. I head out to do the Saturday newspaper run (and to post an Ebay to Austria) and as I do so, there are a number of sirens heading towards town. When I hit Southway, I can only see several flashing lights in the distance and a hold up of cars and when I finally get through and pass the wreckage, there is shredded car turned over having crashed through the wall. Its horror show and looks like a bad omen.

I return home to the post and I have received my first Christmas card of the year/season. The card turns out to be from my aunt in Brightlingsea whose husband is also my dad’s boss at the firm that is currently smoking him out with regards to employment and refusing to pay him any redundancy it seems with the hope that dad will just resign. Yes, I am most certainly my father’s son when it comes to problems with employers. I’m all right Jack, I think me and him might have actually made could union members after all. So, to have such a person send me a Christmas card really doesn’t register highly in seasonal goodwill.

Speaking of Dad, earlier on he came online on MSN to speak and I only found myself switching to appearing offline in an attempt/desire not to speak.

Around this point I attempt to phone Sara (Haslett) for the first time and I get nothing. I text and await some kind of fucking sign of life (hey, she’s fond of the powder, perhaps she OD’d and is incapable).

I pick up the WWF game on the Playstation again and set about unlocking the legends (Brutus Beefcake and Bret Hart first methinks). The game is great and takes your mind of your woes but I also realise my posture and expression begins to resemble after a while Andy off Little Britain, so I drop it as soon as I can (which is hide in the light of this current addiction).

I attempt Haslett once more and again there is nothing. We have now headed into the PM and it has become evident there is something up. All hopes of spending the day together in the city now seem a bleak wet dream, a distant memory. I text again, this time asking her to confirm whether I have had the (inevitable) “heave hoo”.

Once more today, Dad comes online and this time he catches me. We exchange a dozen lines before I shut up and eventually he disappears. Things are now officially up with her and I am concerned and growing pissed off with the day.

I begin attempting Haslett regularly now, leaving messages on her voicemail of anger and concern (but all still in a wimpy fashion), ringing regularly and sending text message after text message, none of which get answered. The day now is obviously doomed.

On TV this afternoon is A Streetcar Named Desire. I have never seen this movie before but have been often told that I’d like it, to the point that Coogan once compared to me Stanley. Really? I watch the film with one hand on my mobile phone. Occasionally, in boring moments of the movie (and there are quite a few) I dial the phone and/or send another text message to Sara. I however watch the movie intently, considering what is making Blanche tick and I find myself drawing comparisons to her and Sara in an attempt at empathy.

At my most pissed off point in the afternoon, I grab a bottle of wine out the rack and proceed to have a drink (1996 Trio chardonnay, any good?). I fuck up and cork it and by the time I get the bottle pouring, the wine has pretty much gone to shit and I don’t really feel like drinking (getting drunk) anyway. Instead, I probably Sara (or attempt) and/or send another text message.

Eventually on the phone front, when A Streetcar Named Desire ends and I once more become bored, I keep phoning and occasionally the phone does not go to her voicemail after ringing, it straight ends call. This suggests that the phone is being turn off (call rejected) at the other end. Here is the first actual sign of life I have had all day and, almost stalker-esqe, I immediately proceed to call the phone again. Eventually, the phone stops ringing at her end altogether and she has obviously switched her phone completely off. Coward.

I’m fucked off really, with notice I could have got someone else to go with and/or I could have gone up to see Millwall v Brighton and then sold the tickets to a taut. By the way (for the record), Millwall beat Brighton 2-0, Dobie scored his first goal for Millwall and Paul Ifill came on as a sub and scored not for the first time this season.

As the evening gets older, my text messages become more frequent as I begin to act with reckless abandon. By now it is absolutely obvious I am not going to be speaking to her on the phone today but I figure best keep calling, occasionally leaving a message on her voicemail even if it is just a grunt (pretty much all/what she deserves by this point). Today is one of those days when you do something (me hassling her) which/that you realise is so thoroughly wrong and out of order but you just do it anyway without care.

For dinner I pop out and go to the chip shop when tonight I had hoped to be dining in one of the finest eateries in the West End. How the mighty have fallen.

I watch some TV show about the music of Bernard Hermann and it reaches Psycho and I begin to draw comparisons. Scary scary scary. Good soundtrack though.

Tonight poor old mum makes the biggest mistake of recent weeks by calling me on the phone while I am at the eye of the storm. When she rings (me stupidly half thinking it might actually be Sara) she catches me at the worst point possible. I begin grunting down the line like a teenager and when she gets arsey with me, I let rip down the line, her being an innocent bystander in my car crash weekend. I shout down the phone at frightening proportions, I really hate getting in this state and it is the time when really I need to be left alone to just blow off steam in my own way. I feel really bad in doing this but it feels like interference. And then the lay in the boot, akin to the ring phrase of Sara telling me that I am an “arrogant self absorbed prick”, mum goes “well, we all have our problems” and she proceeds to tell me how the Inland Revenue have begun proceedings to squeeze the £7,000 tax credit out of them, by way of an £80 direct debit a week. Suddenly my parents moving house is in jeopardy and it is really not what I want to hear at this time. The phone call only serves to make me feel worse, I now worry because I know they (the parents) will be worrying about me, which is why I never tell them anything that happens to me in the first place. Sometimes happens all the time.

As soon as I get off the phone, I grab it and throw against my wardrobe pretty hard as it smashes to pieces and leaves a dent in the wardrobe. That’s a good way of letting off steam, even if it points towards a possible necessity for anger management. I continue to stomp it into the ground just to work up a brief sweat and make the heart pound faster to match the emotions in my head. Poetic.

I continue calling and texting (pretty much hassling) as the movie of the evening comes on and it is Notting Hill. This film is the fucking pits. I don’t understand Hugh Grant and why girls fantasize about him because he is the ultimate wet bastard seemingly conceived with a weak sperm. I bet girls don’t blow him out though.

The film sends me asleep but unfortunately I awaken around midnight just wanting the fucking bad day/night to end so that I can have a fresh restart to my life in the morning. As I say, this is the eye of the storm so exaggeration goes.

I spend the night in hell. I can’t sleep so I lie awake thinking too much, much more than is safe for a person. I contemplate and analyse far too far into why Sara has done what she has done to me and ultimately, resoundingly I am only able to come around to laying all the blame on myself. I beat myself up as I enter into a domino effect of falling emotions, the typical type of bullshit a person (everyone) goes through when they get dumped on, akin to: anger, denial, acceptance. And the anger remains as I continue to call and text in futile efforts like firing a gun into the air. I send nasty texts which gradually get nastier and nastier but generally all with a level of censorship to prevent absurdity. When I text the word “coward”, as I clear the text and come to the word “cow” I figure I’ll send that too. Pathetic times call for pathetic measures I guess. I fear seeing my phone bill month now, its going to be horrific.

And it al goes to show the measures I will go to for £80.

Eventually there is some late night film called The Broken Hearts Club: A Romantic Comedy on Channel Four starring your boy Zach Braf, which I actually really enjoy and get into until I fall asleep without really knowing what is going on in the story.

Luckily, I am finally able to put an end to such a shitty fucking day.

np: Neil Young – Don’t Let It Bring You Down

December 10 (Friday): I wake up and outside it is a shitty day. Today I have no real zest for life, yesterday morning was a real knock back on the employment front and I have no real interest/ambition to go through that again today. Sadly, however I have an interview scheduled for 1PM.

I try to make some decent plans for this morning, to do something useful and worthwhile but all I find myself able to come up with is to watch my Bully DVD which I bought back in the height of summer, showing really just how much desire I have to see this film. I slap it on however and fall asleep in the process. Brad Renfro is in it (and he’s pretty good too) but it doesn’t offer much else, just Larry Clark attempting really hard to shock (as per usual).

During the morning I receive an email from Steve Clear, Mark’s brother who tells me about his hip hop record (Rup and DJ So Clear) and it seems it is out and there are copies in town at the metal shop It’s Electric. I want to hear this record in the baddest way, as I said before, it’s a release I really wanted to put out on Gringo Records but wasn’t to be.

Around 10.45 Sara texts telling me that “coming home was the best thing I have ever done”. That’s nice.

Before the movie ends, I pop out to Asda because my car is now empty of fuel and I really don’t want to be filling up when I am fitting the clock to get to my interview.

Today turns out to be a bit of a disaster. Come midday, I have still received no information about my impending 1AM interview from Acme Personnel and I barely know even where the venue for the interview is. When I attempt to pull it up on my PC, with not much time left before I need to leave, the computer at this point takes the opportunity to stall, foul up and crash meaning when I leave home at 12.30 for the interview, I have nothing more (information wise) that relates to the job other than the vague address.

I leave on time and as I pass the Tesco Hythe and roundabout I see my old employer in his sports car and it only serves to make my skin crawl as the prospect of re-entering such a working environment depresses me and makes me shudder.

I find myself having a minor nightmare finding the place in Alresford, its all fucking farm houses and fields in amongst it’s poxy little village (not a fan of the country myself). As I said before, when I was told the company was called Caring Home, I thought it was a construction company run by Mr Caring. Whoops. Today, I am being lined up for a test then interview. Taking tests in interviews at this point of my career I really do see as taking the piss but whatever I really want a salary right now. When I eventually find the place, it has the most cramped car park in history and as soon as I park I am asked by a car valet (Mr glorified car cleaner) to move it. He takes my keys of me and only minutes into my “interview” I find myself wondering if I will ever see my car again. Very worrying because I’ll still be paying for that fucker for the next five years I believe. My initial impressions of the place are the stuff of stunned. I was expecting the place to be smaller and really not so, for the want of better words, so feminine. Oh yeah, I can really see myself fitting in here. I sit for a few minutes awaiting my fate and when eventually my interviewer turns up I recognise her as being a face that used to be in my ACCA course in/at Chelmsford APU, not the best of days. And I would bet that she is actually, possibly younger than me. So, immediately feeling patronised and with no background knowledge on the job/position/company, I settle into an interview that baffles me, just wanting to get the “test” out of the way. Eventually me and the girl (and I repeat girl) get onto the subject of APU. Sounds like she is slightly ahead of me in her studies (but hey its not a race, is it?). The job sounds very easy, an utter doss, and not exaggerating, data processing where a week’s work by someone like me could be performed in a day (especially after fitting months onto Sage at Acme Pipeline in the matter of a few days only a couple of months ago). Unimpressed, I urge her to give me the test and when I get it, it is moronic questions about the double entry of an accrual and about eleven other similar questions. I begin to wonder now whether I am actually more qualified (through experience) than me interviewer. I do the test in about five minutes and it is bollocks and I have officially taken offence. The next step is my Excel test. Grief. As I walk over to the computer, there suddenly is someone else I used to go to APU with, some tubby bitch that I actually used to sit next to, week in, week out. I gasp a loud “HALLO!” and immediately I feel I have made a mistake. The scene in Fever Pitch when the main guy acts overfamiliar at an interview has always struck me hard and I know it’s a faux pas even if I still do it. I pick up the Excel “test” and it’s a week’s bank reconciliation. I stare at the paper blankly for a few minutes, the question is poor and in itself could do with being tested. The reconciliation brought forward on the test in next to nonsense (I realise I am sounding like a prick at this point but I can’t help it). Bemused, I tear into bank rec, doing it “their way” to keep them happy when knowing at the time it really isn’t of a very good standard. I do it and me and the girl go back for a continuation of the interview. Whereas she was previously telling me how people had been promoted within the firm over the course of six months, she now takes the tact of seeming to dissuade me even using the term “overqualified”, which was something I didn’t want to be so cocksure to even suggest (let alone say). It seems this is a job that I could do with my eyes shut but one that I would definitely eventually get bored and playful at and begin looking elsewhere. Still, I don’t feel I am afforded the upperhand/respect/recognition I deserve here and if they’re willing to pay me what they say, it will do for me know. We reach the stage where she goes “do you have any questions?” and usually if you have none you are dead but today I just respond “no, I think we have covered everything”. She tells me they will be conducting second interviews and making their decisions soon, pretty much par for the course. As I leave I pass the Christine and say “bye and take care”, pretty embarrassed by it all. My interviewer pipes up “she seems to know everyone” and I reply “yeah, I used to sit next to her and she would always give me grief”. I shake her hand and leave, pissed off at the position and interview, it all feeling/seeming somewhat of a waste of time. During my entire at the company, I only saw another man once, this is so obviously a job/position for a another female and will more than likely go to another female. I feel pissed off at the employment agency for putting me forward to what would appear a waste of time position, but they see payola ahead of common sense. I’m a professional cynic but my heart’s not in it.

I get home at a loss, annoyed but with a bit of life in me now. Eventually I head out again and into town; retail therapy beckons, a reward for my fourth interview in a month (spurious, big time). I get my copy of the Rup The Cunt twelve inch that Steve has put out and it’s the first record I have bought in ages and maybe the first twelve inch I have bought in over five years. I also come across a signed (hardback) copy of the new Douglas Coupland book Eleaner Rigby in Waterstones. Previously I had no interest book but now suddenly I feel the need to immediately snap it up. Yeah, I can really afford to be spending £16 on a book at these times.

Night falls and I return home. Since this morning, I haven’t heard from Sara. I text her again after calling the number and only get her voice mail. Strange.

I play some WWF Playstation and finally unlock Bret Hart on Smackdown vs Raw. God, the character absolutely sucks on this game, was this intentional by Vince McMahon? Disappointed, I immediately set about scoring points with view to unlocking the Legion Of Doom.

Soon that gets tiresome and I feel the need/desire to have an early night but that plan falls on it’s arse. After the interview today, I really do feel down and just want to turn it in, put a close on the day and try/start afresh again tomorrow. I try Sara some more but no dice but that’s par for the course of today so no worries (she said she was going out tonight anyway). I then proceed to watch a Mystery Science Theatre 3000 I downloaded off Soulseek. It’s not the best, verging on lame and fails to hold my attention. When it thankfully ends, I peruse the internet for trash, eventually coming across the coolest games site I have ever seen (off the back of a link from a Bad Hand from somewhere).

Friday night funny TV eventually comes around, just as Husbands by Cassavetes finishes downloading onto my PC (complete with French subtitles, doh!). Max And Paddy comes on and while I was previously dubious of the show, tonight it kills, this show is just as funny as Phoenix Nights, Peter Kay remains talent! Peep Show follows and that only improves with each show also, its all painfully observed and funny, the weird becomes more normal the weirder he gets every week. With prime time out of the way, the repeats come along with Father Ted considering moving to America and Bo Selecta swearing its way into the evening, it’s all good and serves to finally send me to sleep.

np: Blur – Country House

December 9 (Thursday): Dream: I go back to work at my old employers and it is a really weird vibe but the partners are at least acting with compassion rather than condemnation.

My first day of freedom from exams, hallelujah. At 8.50 I get rudely interrupted when my mobile rings and it is Mark from Spicers phoning for some reason. By the time I actually reach my phone however, he is gone. He’s probably sitting an exam in Chelmsford right now and wondering if I am around for a last minute pep talk.

This morning, with no rest for the wicked, I have an interview scheduled for 10PM in Hadleigh. I pull myself together and head off at 9AM.

As usual I tear up/down the A12 at breakneck speed, I really despise this road for some reason between Colchester and Ipswich, in my head singing the Dead Kennedys’ version of Viva Las Vegas. I aim for Hadleigh and worry about missing it (missing the turn off to the sticks). Hadleigh is the strangest little town, when I was younger for some reason it had the largest Tesco in East Anglia and me and my parents would make Friday night trips/pilgrimages to it where it would have the largest selection of toys (Star Wars and Action Force figures) going. In my youth I probably spent half my pocket money and birthday present money in Hadleigh. Of course though, all good things come to an end and the large store is no longer a Tesco, last time I saw it was a huge Byrite, the size of which I didn’t think existed.

By the time I arrive in Hadleigh, I find myself having decided that I don’t really want to work in Hadleigh, have to drive all the way to this village every day of the week, all year. Here is another firm akin to my first mistake of my first employers in the world of accountancy.

I have to say though, when I arrive at the office in Hadleigh it is a pretty impressive building/office. As I step in the reception, the secretary is one of the friendliest I have come across of late. And her little (young) helper is a gorgeous strawberry blonde, maybe I might like this job after all. I wait many minutes for my interview and when I am finally received, the biggest of geeks (silly moustache and crap hair) leads me upstairs. Suddenly it dawns on me once more, this is the accounting profession. And the Chartered one at that (with me being a Certified scumbag). The office turns out to be old style, the only visible (probable) change décor since the war being the installation of computers. I find myself being interviewed by the moustache and his little helper, another accelerated young buck, perhaps my age or younger. I suspect my interviewer (interrogator) takes an immediate disliking to me (first impressions) as he picks up my CV and immediately rips into my school career and poor GCSE results. Ten years down the line, I hardly think those matter any more. An obvious spoon fed student (a chartered accountant remember) he quizzes me as to why I never went to university. I fuck up and tell him that “its just not done in my family”. This is not a valid excuse even if it is the truth (my cousins remember being on the whole being either in construction or single parents). I find the knock effects my posture, as half way through I can sense my body almost slumped to the right as I cling onto my crossed leg (American style) as if it is all that is holding me up. I probably act bored or laid back as I reel off my experience at my old employers before finally, completely hitting the wall when it gets queried as to why I am currently unemployed. I still find myself unable to talk myself out of this one and I am only unable to come across as coy and as if I am hiding something. And the guy really wants to know just what monkey shines I got up to. I fluff it here, fucking up. Without even half an hour past, the electricity inside the room is non-existent. I suspect the guy is really far from impressed by me but then again bear in mind that this is an accountant I am expecting sparks from, an accountant being one of the most boring species of man in existence, the arse end of the alpha man spectrum (zebra male). A lot of talk today is all about audit and that remains an area of pain to me, something I know I can do but something I have not been afforded a decent level of experience in due to the apparent incompetence of my prior firms and their ability to manage staff (ew, bitchy). At probably the 10.30 mark, along comes question time and it by now is pretty apparent that the guy wants me out of the door as I am now wasting his time. Floundering, I pop up with some surprisingly good questions but in the fall knowledge that I have already blown it. I almost throw questions at them like rocks, really trying to get some kind of reaction/passion spark out of these zebras. I leave feeling like screening, feeling that I have been discriminated against. I go into the thing jaded and half-hearted at best and only get the worst back. I would question why these people would even want to see me, I guess that is the hard work of the personnel people furiously selling me to prospective employers as I only end up letting them down. Grief. Whereas I arrived in Hadleigh buzzing to the Dead Kennedys sarcasm, I leave with my tail between my legs murmuring to myself Tender by Blur and “get through it”.

Retail therapy abounds as I head further up the A12 towards Ipswich for a treat and a post exam present (yeah, that’s deserved). I park by the Portman Road football stadium and decree that this shed has nothing on the New Den (except for maybe around 15,000 extra seats). I head into town and straight to the Ipswich comic shop, Central City Comics. This is the only place that I know that stocks the fantastic Headpress book/journal. This shop is so strange, it just reminds me of Red Dwarf for some reason. I enter and it seems only inhabited by comic geeks and mental simpletons, writing down the web address for some reason while the comic seller guy nervously looks on as the mental midget leans on one of his trade paperbacks, potentially reducing its grading from a mint to a mere fine. I get out of there as soon as possible.

I feel a love/hate relationship with Ipswich. For every good time, there seems a bad time. It’s a weird town where nothing really seems to be happening, to me it lacks character. And Ipswich people’s Suffolk accents, albeit friendlier sounding than Essex estuary accents, only serves to make them sound a bit thick. I stagger around town for the morning, banking my very first dole cheque in Natwest and then buying Hell’s Angels by Hunter S. Thompson before going into Holland & Barrett and buying what I suspect has been missing from my life of late: St John’s Wort. With Christmas coming soon, I can only recall Christmas Eve’s spent shopping in Ipswich with my parents and the Butter Market shopping complex with now houses a Starbucks, something I hadn’t realised had reached Ipswich, where it sits almost opposite Costa. Today I could really kill for a great cup of coffee but its pricing beyond me in these times of trouble.

At 12.15, while I find myself in Waterstones looking at the music books, my mobile rings and it is a reminder about this Saturday’s show and the Jerry Springer Opera I have tickets for. This reminds me of how Sara has been in the country already four days now and hasn’t bothered to get in touch. Ouch.

After that, I soon tear out of Ipswich, stopping off at the out of town Tesco and PC World, macking the digital cameras and weighing up if one would be affordable right now. I also find myself lovingly staring at the iPods but telling myself “no!”.

I get home and when I finally get around to looking at the newspaper, The Sun has the headline: “So, is this really the most OFFENSIVE image in Britain?” above a picture of the nativity scene. Ouch, what purpose does it serve running this story? What cause requires the knee-jerk reaction?

More spookily however are the pictures of Viktor Yuschenko which get scarier each time I see them. Wow, I hope the people that currently have it in for me don’t decide to poison me, I definitely would not be able to pull then (ho ho).

Just past 4PM (16.05) and my phone rings and its Dick Warner of Anglia Grain, an old client at BS and someone we played football with, on my mobile. Unfortunately I am only able to supply him with some of the information he requests. Drama.

Half an hour later (16.34) I get Stevo phoning me from Chernobyl (my old office). He has this and that to tell me but no real great shakes and nothing I am overly interested in. It is amusing however to hear his tone change when a partner obviously comes into the room and I swear I hear Dr Who in the distance. Work keeps haunting. Drama.

The afternoon rules when I receive interview questions back from Rothko. The guy has obviously spent some time of them and given a lot of consideration. Good times.

I spend the remainder of my afternoon doing my English homework, a critique and commentary on my asylum seeker letter. Over the course of two sides of A4 I tear the piece to shreds, probably going too far (as usual) in describing the techniques used in (the already overblown) fictional letter. Not fun.

I head out to English class and twice my phone beeps. First it is Emma telling me that she is too ill to make class tonight and for me to tell teacher. The second beep is a text from My Smelly Valentine at 18.36: “How you doin Jason. Its Sara x”. It comes from a number I don’t recognise but fucking finally she has got in touch. Back of the net.

English class begins and tonight we are going over our progress sheets while also listening to more speeches and analysing them (tonight more Churchill and onto JFK). Teacher takes us outside one by one and reviews our progress while we (the class) get left to our own devices to discuss the speeches. When we discuss my progress, teacher takes me out to a darkened hall tells me how it all reminds her of school discos (not surprising because the centre used to be a school) and how no one would ask her to dance except for the ugliest boy at the end of the night, to which she took offended (low self esteem I’m sure). I get excited talking about the course and English and she again tells me how I have a “gift” (music to my ears) and suggests how I should be looking to doing other courses. With one foot remaining in reality I mention that I have just had an interview and sat exams this week but I am trying to keep in writing.

Back to the class room without a teacher and no one can be arsed to actually discuss the speeches. I get asked by someone whatever happened with my work situation and I tell her how I got shit canned and I ask “do you know what a blog is?”. The woman’s response is “oh, you didn’t you plonker” and, bearing in mind this is a union worker/representative of some kind, it is a fair comment. Once more I find myself having to explain my way around the situation and as I tell story after story about the firm, I find myself sounding justified and actually interesting as I appear to hold some kind of court whilst also violently squirming. It also turns out that the lady has dealings with my old firm also, seems I sure know how to pick employers. Soon we (rightfully) get back onto the subject of the speeches and trudge on. At some point, the guy in the class rubs me up the wrong, when discussing Americans asks “has anyone here heard of Bill Hicks?”. Duh! I almost mention to him about discovering Patton Oswalt but figure that to be too obscure a reference. I wind up being the only person to go/say “yes” but really can’t find anything to add other than “have you heard of David Cross” which is obviously a nada. He does however add “listening to him gives you hope for Americans” which I find a really annoying and wankerish thing to say, so arrogant. I think there are only so many thick/stupids Americans because there are so fucking many of them! Not because its inherent. Whatever, class ends and I’m happy.

I get home and on that vibe I find that I have received the questions back from Patton Oswalt. Fucking excellent! This guy is SO funny, like grabbing some conversation (albeit brief) out of Bill Hicks in his lifetime. I have to say, listening to his CD, it made me laugh out loud more than David Cross’s CD, which was bogged down with too much political content. Patton Oswalt however appeared (briefly) in Run Ronnie Run, so they’re batting for the same team. Fucking hell, a Q&A with a guy that was in Run Ronnie Run. So good.

I exchange a few texts with Sara tonight and make sure/confirm that she is still on for Saturday. She calls me “silly” but not before acting in a strop because she thinks I am in a strop because she has not been in touch sooner. It is all too confusing and complex and very hard work at the end of the day (today).

Tonight ends on the best of vibes as on TV (Channel Four) is Ghost World. Yes!!! This feels special, like Christmas TV, something different and above standard set aside for the holiday season. And finally it feels like Christmas. Ironically the last time I actually sat down to watch Ghost World was about a year and a half ago and the summer night that I had told Sara she was a Holly Golightly and six hours later she was found out what it meant and she kept calling my mobile and (to my amusement) I kept ignoring it. Ouch, I never saw again (whoops, backfire).

So to say the least, tonight I feel pretty good and pretty excited about things even despite the shitty interview at the beginning of the day. At 11PM, I find myself looking on my mobile for people to text to watch Ghost World (yup, that happy that I am that sad). The only person to reply however is Phoebe: “Hiya that’s ur favourite film! Will definitely switch over – dont even ask about exams mine were horrible! nite nite.” All right then, I don’t.

After Ghost World (which remains fantastic for the Nth time) the really weird/strange Diane Keaton moving Looking For Mr Goodbar is on BBC. This film is so whack, Annie Hall acting like a proper slag and eventually (rightfully) getting stabbed to death for it. Girls take heed not head.

Nite nite.

np: Dead Kennedys – Viva Las Vegas

December 8 (Wednesday): These are not the best of days. This morning the alarm clock awakens me, my night may have been disrupted but at least my awakening is abrupt and what I deserve. Immediately I get up and hit the lights. I keep my tax tape running, hoping some of it will seep in and I will restore enough to pass today’s exam.

Again this morning, when I awaken, outside it is still dark like night time and it doesn’t work for me, this will not aid or pamper my temper. I pull myself together and around 7.30 I am semi functional, grabbing breakfast and making myself a super strength coffee. Still, I find myself running slowly as I check my phone for any magical messages arriving through the night (nada). 7.50 hits and I am only just about getting dressed. I think about the pootang in the exam hall yesterday and look forward to seeing them again this morning. I find myself leaving later and slower and yesterday and by 8.00 I find myself still struggling to come to terms with technology.

My ride to Chelmsford this morning is a little more tempered, leaving just those ten minutes later appears to equate to hitting ten times as much traffic. Eventually I get onto the A12 and you just know what to expect from the most road worked road in England.

I arrive in Chelmsford at the Rivermead at around 9.10, later that yesterday. I pick up my books for some last minute cram but tax really is not the kind of subject you can cram, you either know it or you don’t. And I am in complete/total awe of anyone (any students) able to master this subject. The topics they test in this exam are much advanced on those that an average student will face at work and the wealth of the syllabus is terrifying. Are these words of a confident man?

I check my phone and no messages, no good luck texts, nothing. Oh how the mighty have fallen. I check my email on GPRS and there is an email from Mark. Cool. I open and read that he is jacking in his job in Tokyo and coming back to England. Yes! This is really good news and I hope the turnaround in my fortunes just before my hardest exam ahead of me in 2004.

I brave the exam hall and before entering I bump into Louise studying in the last minute for her tax exam. She appears more confident than me, probably because she is better at studying than me (for starters). Once more I shy away from asking about my old employers, part of me wants to know but part of me really does not want to know and I really should not take any interest in that place anymore.

We step into the exam hall (a tired gymnasium) and head to today’s desk, number 110, even more central than yesterday’s desk, possibly the most central desk in the entire hall. I sit down but no one is sitting down in/on the desks around me. I see the smit lady from yesterday and my heart beeps a little bit faster. She looks over but there is no way I am going to give her some smug grin in times like this. I also see someone I used to study with back at the beginning of my ACCA studies and he heads to the front room of the hall, is he still doing the foundation level?

All thoughts aside, 10AM soon comes around and the exam, as per expected, turns out to be really difficult. Today I see/recognise many faces also retaking this fucker and judging by how difficult this paper turns out, I may be seeing them again come June. It starts off ok, sensible questions about personal tax comps blah blah blah but then the inheritance tax questions kick in, kicking me in the balls. I flounder. I do write for the full three hours but it is top heavy on bullshit and guess work. Randy Pan was described the paper as a waffle paper but its far fucking from, a waffle paper I think I might be good at. And I probably end up submitting a very waffle filled exam anyway.

1PM comes around like a real relief. I storm out of the exam hall, not even bothering to acknowledge anyone I know. I jump in my car with empathy but I search around for reasons, excuses and other external elements to blame for my performance today and inevitable failure of the exam. I shouldn’t have been sacked for nothing.

On the way back, as I hit Colchester I stop by at Sainsburys to purchase the NME and comfort food. Staying in Stanway, I also stop by the chip shop and buy myself chips, the ultimate indicator that I feel sorry for myself.

By the time the Simpsons comes on in the evening, I find myself in a state of flux. The episode is the one with Michael Jackson. I bet sha’mone never had to sit such difficult exams.

To occupy my mind, in the first hours of freedom from exams for months, I play Playstation and crack open the new WWF game: Smackdown vs Raw. Its actually a really shit hit extension/upgrade of the previous titles in the series, very playable whilst also being very difficult. Like a stickler for old school, I unwisely choose to be Ric Flair in season mode and routinely get my arse kicked for being physically crap compared to the modern day monsters. I do however find (disturb) myself giggling like a nutter when I play the “bra and panties” match/bout. But then again, anything red blooded would do that.

Tonight I just about remember that it is Ben’s birthday and I text him good wishes. He responds with kindness/gratitude and suggests going out on the last Friday night. I say “yes” but really don’t fancy it, not because of him but because I currently hate going out and socialising. Pony.

By the time I get off the Playstation it is really late and I am stunned. I have to go to bed. Tomorrow we will run faster.

np: Blur - Tender

December 7 (Tuesday): Today goes utterly wrong. I awaken at 4AM, unable to go back to sleep overly concerned about today’s exam. This is the first of two, which is twice as bad, double the trouble. Well ahead of time, in the early hours of the morn I opt for listening to the revision tapes with the view of some last minute, subconscious cram.

When the alarm eventually goes off at 7AM, I’m pretty still half awake and feel fully rough. I awaken (proper) with one of the worst headaches I have ever known. Oh bugger.

I leave home around 8AM, which is pretty precautious for a drive to Chelmsford for a 10AM exam. Still, I do experience the usual hell that is getting out of Colchester in rush hour and as per usual, the A12 is being worked on (when is it not?), so there are obvious hold ups there so it turns out fortunate I overcompensate.

I arrive in Chelmsford at 9AM and park up and await my fate while the going is still good. I check my phone and still no word from Sara and particularly today, no wishes of “good luck”. Phoebe does however text me with “good luck” which warms up my little black heart.

Inside my car I perform a lot of last minute cram revision, creating all sorts of great mnemonics for audit terms that are all sex centred, these I am bound to remember. I just hope that I will need to remember them.

I leave my car around 9.30 to head to the exam hall. I look around for some familiar faces but really there isn’t anyone I know about today, what does that suggest? I notice one woman who stands and immediately I find myself very smit and all my concentration on my exam suddenly transfers to my dick. Whoops.

The exam actually turns out to be ok. I sit at desk 102 which is uncomfortably fairly central in the exam hall but the questions this time round seem less vague than in the summer. I tear through it and bash out lengthy answers which I think/hope will be enough. I do notice a couple of boo boos here and there, not least the question I answer before realising I have misread the actual question but I think I manage to work enough magic for damage limitation. I write solid for three hours and for the first time I find myself requiring an additional answer booklet after filling up the standard issue twenty page booklet. It turns out to be a hard exam but certainly passable (but then again so was last summers).

By the time the exam is history, I pull away from Chelmsford and drive back down the A12 with my headache cleared and a whole air of relief sweeping over me. On the way home I stop off via Asda to get some munch.

When I arrive home, the fucking groundskeeper is around and he collars me for conversation. He asks me all about my job and reckons I was hard done by because I never received an actual written warning. Maybe, this does seem a man who would have received such warnings over the years. I’m too tired and jaded to really talk to this guy today and I’m pretty vacant in conversation, even to the point that HE actually gets bored of me! Job done. This is of course not before he gets to tell me the latest tales of the crime scene of Colchester and he gives me the latest news (gossip) on all my neighbours. I could give a fuck.

Once home, I head upstairs to hide and prepare for tomorrows tax exam. It really doesn’t look good for that one. There’s no real time/opportunity to study for it now, so I just chuck on the study tapes and pray that there will be some magic in them.

I check my landline and there is a message left on there from Acme Personnel , some woman I have never heard of before. I call them up and I am being lined up for a job interview on Friday. When the guy tells me the company is called Caring Homes, I naturally think the job is at a construction firm called Caring who build houses. Nope, it’s caring as in wiping old people’s arses and running off with their kid’s inheritances kind of caring. OK, should be interesting, at least it’s an interview paying what I want and currently, in this panic state, just what I am looking for.

At 3.50 Stevo calls me mobile, for reasons unknown. We talk shit and I think he’s just calling because he sounds bored in the office. I’m loath to ask about the office but he tells me anyway. To be honest, I think it’ll be best if I cut all ties with the firm just to ensure that I don’t turn into some kind of David Brent character (ha ha).

Back to the tapes on the computer and Acton MSNs some, causing a bit of a distraction. And then mum phones up and I really don’t want to talk, I just want some last minute revision. I pick up the phone and must sound like the most grumpy bollocks of grumpy bollocks.

10PM comes around and that’s really my study curfew so I flip to watching Teachers on Four followed by Sex Inspectors featuring this weird couple into S&M going vanilla. After that comes the Peep Show repeat whilst on BBC is The Chase with Henry Rollins and before I know it I have stayed awake/up past midnight on a school night before my exam. Whoops.

np: Rah Bras - Bababoon

December 6 (Monday): Chicks Dig Jerks. This is now the home straight to the exams. And also the day that Sara (Haslett) arrives back in England. I awaken just as (I believe) she lands back in England. And it is the most vile of days with which to return to the UK, bad news weather abounds, it is ferocious outside, cold and dull and infinitely lacklustre, just like yours truly actually.

Today is Exam Eve, like Christmas Eve but without anything good going for it. Today is cram day, a day intended to be chock full of last minute panic revision/study as all things come together and I begin look for sitting the exams tomorrow. Oh yeah, that in an ideal world.

This morning, I receive my Breakfast With Hunter DVD through the post from America and the temptation is just too seducing. Although, I don’t give into that/it until the afternoon. Oh no, this morning On The Town is on TV and I find myself gawping at that for much too much of the morning (hey, I used to like reading Damon Runyon books).

Before I know it, the day has reached halfway/midday and before I can get down to any study, I have to go out and get the daily newspaper and some more groceries (my Asda trip didn’t go all that far it seems). I stagger over to Sainsburys in Stanway and satisfy my apparent craving for a bombay mix dinner. Disgusting.

I get home and still unable to study, weak willed I give in and watch my Breakfast With Hunter DVD. It’s pretty cool to watch Hunter S. Thompson shuffle about more getting in the way rather causing any trouble although the scenes of letting off fire extinguishers in the offices of Rolling Stone magazine and tearing Alex Cox a new arsehole are pretty classic things to witness.

Early evening hits and I receive the interview Qs back from the Rah Bras which is aces.

Study tonight turns to religiously listening last minutes to the revision tapes over and over. I just pray that enough stuff goes in and stays in.

Monday night shite comedy arrives and I watch the Smoking Room for the first time and it’s actually a really funny show. Topski. From there I soldier on with the revision tapes until late, staying up for Film 2004 and Jonathan Ross to see his review of Garden State. I stay awake for the show but fall asleep before he manages to review the film and I am out for the count for the exams.

np: The Killers – All These Things That I’ve Done

December 5 (Sunday): The Sanctity Of Life. Sunday morning and the fun fun newspaper run. Today, I am all out of food in the flat so I chance my arm and actually go to Asda and do some food shopping.

As I wander around the aisles like a loser, I spot a face from the past and speed up in the hope that she doesn’t see me. As I stare at the cheese, making my dairy decision, I hear her call my name and I trapped in flashback hell. Here is Jackie, a really old face back from 93/95 and the loser YT college I attended back in the day. And with her is her fucking family, her husband who once did an ACCA course with me and now thinks we are friends while I think he’s divlo fucker. She shows me her kid, a lad called Jordan (probably named after the New Kid but now the name has been hijacked by the big titted Katie Price, that christening sure has backfired on her). Her kid is wearing some wacky Christmas necktie that plays a song/tune (when it works). I am so trapped in the dairy/fridge section of Asda by this lot, I am in hell. Jackie will ever be imprinted on my psyche for numerous tragic reasons and the further away I get from her, the better.

Still, I’m a good guy, I only think these things (that she is complete) pondlife and I make nice nice in response to her questioning of me as if we were still in that funk that was ten years ago. I do however ask her why an employee of Sainsburys is shopping in Asda (such a smartarse but hey Jason at least she has a job!).

Get home as soon as possible to lick my wounds. Ouch, talk about rub salt in the wound.

I attempt to get into some study and by now I have long since aborted my progress recorder. And it doesn’t really affect my effects either way.

By later afternoon I have downloaded Anchorman off Soulseek and the attraction is just too much. And the movie turns out several times funnier than the trailers made it look. Will Ferrell retains his crown.

Additionally, I also watch a worrying amount of Crocodile Dundee In Los Angeles, indicating a new low in my depths of being a sadcase loser.

My main sign/form of human life/contact today is Sara continuing to text me, giving me a commentary of her boarding her plane back to England. It starts out factual (“booking in for my flight now”) but winds up being the down right trivial (“the man opposite is eating and is SO gross”).

Tonight Iggy Pop features on the South Bank Show and it’s a weird one. As usual Iggy comes over as a true hero and survivor but also, in his late years, he comes over as next to broke (or at best financially comfortable). The Stooges coverage is amazing, both interviews, stories and coverage, the band has never had a stronger myth to it. Shit, I should have videoed the show.

np: Guided By Voices – Rhine Jive Click

December 4 (Saturday): What Is Pornography? Saturday morning and that means newspaper day. I awaken and find that I have finally downloaded Garden State off Soulseek but for the life of me I cannot get the .avi file to play. I scan the internet however and eventually come across BS Player which plays not only the Garden State file but a number of other .avi files that have previously not worked.

In the post today I get my first dole cheque. Its official, I’m a sponger. And this is the weirdest cheque I’ve ever seen in my life, like a Wonka bar but in cheque form. It’s about £86, a week and a half’s payola. Can’t wait to be back in work with a salary.

I settle down to watch Garden State expecting a lot. Sadly however it doesn’t deliver. I don’t know, the film just doesn’t seem finished or even overly believable, taking some very realistic/true points and not really doing anything with them. Disappointed. Halfway through, the option to MSN with Acton proves preferable to sticking with the movie meandering nowhere.

I do the Saturday morning newspaper run and by the time I get in it has reached passed midday and already, on paper, half the day has gone to waste.

By now Coffee And Cigarettes has finished downloading so I get down to watching that and I have to admit the slow pace of it all only helps me, in this state of funk, slip into an afternoon nap. Without doubt there are some cool sequences in the movie but the Cate Blanchett one sends me into a coma, meaning I miss the White Stripes sequence. Obviously the best sequence is the Iggy Pop and Tom Waits one as the pair of them play along with the theme and dropping their cool whilst pretending not to. Also Steve Coogan acting like Alan Partridge isn’t an act and of course Bill Murray always give good head, not least for holding his own with the Wu Tang Clan. Or should that be vice versa? Otherwise though, it will be a long time before I bother with this movie again.

As the afternoon reaches 3PM and the football kicks off, I find myself watching my third download of the day in the form of Napoleon Dynamite, a camcorder in the cinema job split into two halves of small byte video files which only matches in lo fi quality, making the film just about watchable. Napoleon Dynamite initially has me laughing, the main is SO funny, so dry and pathetic and gormless as people I know but still making grand announcements in a wave of delusion. People have compared this to a Wes Anderson movie (mainly Rushmore) but the grimey vibe of a run down, small town American high school and a loser being picked on only serves to remind me of Welcome To The Dollhouse, one of the most tragic ever. I stick with the movie and the story never really matches the characters as it stays truthful to a drab, low event existence. And the internet date/singles just does not rub.

Meanwhile, it seems that I should have bothered to go to Millwall as their game at home to Sheffield United sounds as if it is proving as eventful (and fun) as last years game. All sounds like it goes mental at halftime when Kevin Muscat gets sent off along with the Sheffield United goalie and they both get sent off. Nuts. The second half happens and I don’t realise this at the time but Sheffield United don’t actually have a reserve goalie so they have to stick an on field player in goal. So, when Millwall take the lead with a Phillps goal, it sounds about right. However, the strikers (well, Hayles on his own, with a little support from Tessem and Ifill) don’t appear to be able to score in a brothel by the sounds of it. Eventually, sod’s law Sheffield United score an equaliser and then, as per all season, a late goal happens and it’s Sheffield United who go and score and they win 2-1. Grief.

An equally dire day happens on TV, as the afternoon film is Disney doing football (our football) in the movie The Big Green starring Mahoney from Police Academy. This will make you drink and drive.

Early evening gets spent with more MSN with Acton before some show about Cole Porter comes on and I realise I have spent the whole day with the TV on. Late evening and America’s Sweethearts comes on and finally I can’t stand the idea of TV. Relief.

Late and Sweet And Lowdown is on BBC and I had forgotten just how fantastic this movie is, how accurate and touching Sean Penn’s character is. Still, I fall asleep halfway through and stay asleep meaning I miss Midnight Cowboy on Channel Four which is on late late late.

I need to get out the house.

np: Neil Young – Don’t Let It Bring You Down

December 3 (Friday): Summer Trip. This morning I’m up as normals, the best laid plans. Early doors, I head out to do a newspaper run and find myself unable to get parked at the Layer Road shop so instead I head into town just to get out of the house.

As I walk down Crouch Street I see who looks like Sarah. I don’t get a clear shot (view) so I suspect/consider that she might be avoiding eye contact but confirmation it is her arrives when I see her Dad drive along in her car to pick her up. It is the first time that I see her since the hell night.

Town turns into an experience but fortunately I do not bump into any people I don’t want to see. I check out WH Smith and the new issues of Uncut and Hotdog are out, so I pick them up and head home with view to reading them in comfort. Looks like this morning is going to be a lax one, not so much studying/revising accountancy but more so movies.

The morning gradually turns into afternoon with out very much getting accomplished. Friday afternoons are killers for me, I don’t enjoy. I potter around on the computer as my mobile phone rings three times between 3.30 and 4.30, with Stevo on the other end. I reluctantly answer each time and each time it is to silence. Is someone trying to fuck with my mind? He calls a fourth time at 5PM and asks me if I want to go to the Cambridge City v MK Dons FA Cup match tonight, just to swear at the MK Dons basically. I feel the weight of coinage in my pocket and allow that to dictate my decision, telling Steve that once my exams are out of the way next week we should do lunch or something.

The afternoon gradually turns into evening and find myself enduring and suffering a lacklustre Friday night rather than living it.

With one eye on actually being productive this evening, I find myself emailing the Rah Bras to see if they would be up for doing an email interview and almost immediately I get an email back saying “yay”.

Eventually the good Friday night TV comes on with the Simpsons, Little Britain (over Max And Paddy) and a very funny episode of Peep Show seeing the weird eyed guy stalking some girl all the way to her university while his divvy mate joins some shitty band. Pretty funny.

For the remainder of the night I find myself in’n out of consciousness for the Father Ted and Bo Selecta repeats.

I need to get out the house on weekend nights.

np: Dame Fate – Crisp Winter

Thursday, December 23, 2004

Snowy happier with the most life in him in weeks

December 2 (Thursday): Beelzebozo. I wake up at around 6.50 on my parents’ sofa. This piece of furniture wasn’t designed for sleeping on and therefore I’m semi cranky. I take in too much Sky TV before beginning work (study) but at least it is the right side of 9AM.

I feel funny about getting breakfast at my parent’s house while mum is preparing to go to work and Dad is hanging around (although fortunately he is going out later on this afternoon). At least today however the dog has the most life in him that he has had for weeks.

Around 9AM, I hook up on the computer and begin studying using the BPP I-Pass CD-Roms. These questions are hard and this study is not as effective as I hope. I thought multichoice very supposed to be fairly easy?

Around 10AM Sara comes online and asks “how our meal (the Chinese) last night was?”. I wonder if she realises that it is me and not Dad online. I become monosyllabic and anonymous. She then says/asks “has Jason told you that we are going to see a show?”. It becomes obvious that she thinks it is my old man online. I drag it out for a few minutes for saying “I like Peaches” and she clocks it is me. And with that, my study for the day all but goes out of the window with this fucking distraction.

Ouch, the Sky TV is also a distraction; was daytime Sky always this good showing X-Files, Buffy and Angel. And who on earth sits at home and watches these shows, surely no one on the dole can afford Sky?

And then there is The Wrestling Channel showing a shoot interview with Marty Jannetty which actually turns out to be one of the best interviews I have seen so far.

I resume all efforts to study in the afternoon (as the day gets dark/black) but Sara only returns on MSN, telling me about the sort of man she wants to settle down and raise a family with. This ideal man turns out to be a middle aged, accomplished professional but nothing to do with him being successful and financially secure, nothing like that. That’s me out of the window/running then I guess. I however get the final blow in when I punch below the belt (the vagina?) and say “it all sounds a bit fickle to me”. She kicks off and leaves (goes offline).

At this point I switch from accountancy homework to my English homework with my revision/study progress having reached 28% on audit, 8% on tax and an overall score of 18%, this is not progress.

I pick up my English homework and the task is to write a letter to a newspaper on the subject of asylum seekers. I really don’t want to do this essay, it’s a subject for blind liberals and do-gooders in which I fear any opposition to such opinions, only sounds like some BNP/right wing statement. I actually wind up doing a pretty good job whilst being against asylum seekers but sneakily shift the tone of the letter to being negative/critical of media coverage of asylum seekers rather than the actual asylum seekers themselves. Oh well, house them in the homes of silverspoon socialists I say (those overeducated buffoons).

I stick around my parents for some (cooked) dinner before heading home. Upon getting into my Focus and turning the key, the car struggles (almost fails) to start. It is really laboured and a horrible experience as I suspect it as being a knock on effect of letting the staff of Twin Peaks garage touch its insides with view to sabotaging my engine for another pay out/invoice to them. And as my current run of luck has been, it becomes the latest addition to my stockpile of woes.

Drama aside, once going it never stops and I get home in time for a quick bath so I am not stinky for my fellow English students.

English turns out to be another beacon of hope/optimism as within minutes of arriving in the class, the teacher is handing me a creative writing reference book with viewing to me pulling together my apparent “talent” and making something of it (other than to lose my job). It’s a real boost for someone to actually display some real belief in me for once, especially as a person that craves attention (and recognition) and generally gets starved.

Tonight’s class is spent listening to speeches. First is the infamous Martin Luther King “I have a dream” statement which remains pretty moving and well delivered. We follow this with a Winston Churchill speech with isn’t as well delivered but remains heavy in/on content. We then proceed to break down and dismantle the make up of the speeches, almost revealing the individuals not to be as slick, smart and smooth as their words might/would suggest.

During the class, Sara begins texting me again. Tonight she has been/gone to see the new Bridget Jones movie with her friend in Dubai and after the movie they have stopped by a bar which turns out to be inhabited entirely by professional ladies (people on the hustle) and their marks (clients, crawlers without curbs nor cars). Sara expresses her dismay at this place over three consecutive text messages and the inevitable happens when she tells me how her and her friend were propositioned. Dour and dead pan (after this afternoon’s MSN session/revelation) I respond “if the cap fits” to which she responds with an explosive text going “fuck you then”, a reaction I cannot ever remember getting from her before (but from many other girls).

Class ends and I head straight to Tesco Hythe and buy some Rocket Fuel with view to staying up and writing all night. Wired baby.

Eventually Sara texts once more with an apology text after I tell her “I was only joking” and she tells me how “places like that make me feel so dirty”. I wonder how places like that really differ from your run of the mill night clubs though were the intentions are really exactly the same and the exchange of goods and services, that much more subtle and less advertised.

np: Love Among Freaks - Clerks

the Shepherd's Bush skyline. look at those crazy fools working on that roof and Queens Park Ranger's ground on the right.

December 1 (Mum’s Birthday Wednesday): Rockers Against Drugs Suck. This morning I find myself awakened at the ungodly hour of 6AM so that I can get to Shepherd’s Bush in time to get to a tax mock at BPP. I’m not happy, I don’t want to do this. Against the odds I make the 6.51 train and fly into the City.

I hope a pretty easy Central Line tube (grabbing a Metro in the process) and find myself really suffering for it. As I sit on the train and near White City (West London) I can feel my whole body just sparkling inside, acid to the core. Is this the inevitable diabetes I’m bound to catch from my dad finally kicking in? Whatever, I feel fucking rough. Or maybe it is just ADD kicking in.

When I get off at Shepherd’s Bush I head to the closest shop and buy some Refreshers, maybe all I need is some sugar. Or maybe once I get a caffeine fix, all will be well. As I stagger to the college, next to hyperventilating, I see the scary tax tutor who acknowledges me on the town. I barely recognise her, Christ she must think I’m an idiot.

I arrive and there is the Phoebe already arrived, looking composed and cool (cold) as usual. She is sweetness and as usual very friendly, very nice nice. She hands me the audit mock from yesterday (much appreciated) and when I look at the paperclip she has twisted/curled it around into a heart shape. Talk about play with my mind. We talk quite a bit prior to today’s mock, me with much gusto and enthusiasm in an effort to convince everyone (most of all myself) that my current position/situation of employment is acceptable.

We do the tax mock and despite having an obvious struggle it doesn’t turn out to be as difficult and double dutch as I was expecting it would be to me. However the guy sat next to me from Ernst & Young (I see his head paper) huffs and puffs his way through the mock, appearing to spend long periods of the three hour exam just staring into space. That is an example of NFL behaviour? And likewise, someone else struggles as this amazing looking girl sat in the front picks up her coat and leaves within fifteen minutes of the commencement of the exam. Bye eye candy.

Personally, my own exam gets somewhat disturbed when I get Haslett (Sara) beginning to text me further mentioning her decision to move back to England and asking me to ask the tutor what the tax implications her doing so would be. Minimal I would imagine, I doubt she has that much money! I don’t bother asking.

I would say, even though the exam comes as something of a surprise in its clarity, I do find myself blagging (making up) too much of the answers still.

Three hours actually sail by (there was me doubting my ability to sit still for that period of time, ADD) and lunchtime comes around at the most welcome of time. Phoebe says she is getting a KFC and I jump at the opportunity to chow on the colonel’s beak. I buy a pop corn meal and the box appears endless, my super sized meal lasting forever. Kudos.

We spend the afternoon going over the mock answers and ouch I have gone severely wrong, especially worrying when I didn’t feel I was doing/going too badly. All looks bleak and I begin to hyperventilate.

At breaktime I go to the bathroom for some basic recuperation. I look around at the Shepherd’s Bush/White City skyline and I see the Queens Park Rangers ground and the BBC studios and it all seems another world to me, one where people can actually do/pass their tax exams.

Upon arrival back into the mock marking session I finally officially throw the towel in on advanced tax. After recent developments and circumstances, it was always going to be an exam against the elements and it doesn’t look as if I have managed to come out of the other side smiling (yet). This point is a real cross roads. You can just see/tell/pin point how vital now is and how life altering further failure at this point will be and how traceable back this time will be in months and years to come. These are low times.

I switch, my arms now crossed, body language which apparently states a sign of defensiveness. I look around though and I am not alone, many others around me sit arms crossed in horror.

And just as things feel that they can’t get any worse, Andy fucking Kaufman bleeps up with yet another silly question.

The day gets put out of it misery (and most students with it) as well pull out to go home around 4PM. I say “goodbye and good luck” to Phoebe realising that this will probably be the last time ever see her. I leave for home somewhat disillusioned, reading my Hunter S. Thompson book on a very packed train. At one point the woman sat opposite knocks my book with her shopping bag and I utter the word “cunt”. Did I say that out aloud?

When I get back to Bohemian Grove I mess about at home before leaving for my parents and mum’s birthday (with REM CD and cheap card in hand). I mess about way too long and only manage to leave mine at 7PM, meaning all in all I get really bad time.

Upon arrival at home, Dad has luckily left for a birthday Chinese for us all. I was really afraid that my lateness would jeopardise it but alas as ever the olds comes through.

Another year, another birthday as mum hits a depressing 59. I return home to more woes with regards to their ill-decided house move and I only turn up with the ills of the world also making things at best a rather dour affair. I really try to be upbeat but these two are harder lift than me. Nightmare.

Tonight is the next round of the Carling Cup and the epic encounter of Man Utd v Arsenal. Or rather Man Utd reserves vs Arsenal youth team. The league cup is now so cheapened beyond belief, its no longer hardly worth holding especially when the Premier league reserve teams still prove better than the rest of the football league teams. I watch about ten minutes of the game as Man Utd score in the first minute and never let up, winning 1-0. Instead I resume conversation on MSN with Sara, who tonight tells me she likes Peaches (the musician). Never ceases to surprise.

I stay over tonight because I am finding it near impossible to study/revise at my flat because there is just no space nor study area to do so. However this means I have to sleep on the sofa, something I am no longer game for finally being an adult.

np: Peaches – Fuck The Pain Away