PA tagged me a while back.

I am terrible with the memes. This one should be pretty easy though. Even I can name stuff thats around me.

Five Things Found In My Bag

  1. Laptop, and associated gumbo. If I have a bag, it’s generally because I have my laptop. Otherwise, I rarely have enough stuff to warrant such a thing.
  2. imigran – migraine meds. For emergencies. About once a week usually.
  3. flash drive – just in case I need to install something on someones PC. Which I always do.
  4. collection of grant forms and information
  5. Old confectionery wrappers.

Five Things Found In My Room

  1. My room is a little vague. Are we talking bedroom or another room? I will assume bedroom. I have a collection of books by the bedside fairly constantly. Usually I am reading several at once, or rather I start reading several, and then settle on one book to finish, then move onto the next, whilst starting another book or two in the meantime.
  2. C. Generally lolling around in bed, the lazy strumpet.
  3. Laptop. It follows me everywhere. It is my office and entertainment centre.
  4. Cat. Also tends to follow me everywhere. Mainly to complain I think.
  5. Chocolate. Without it my brain stops working.

Five Things You Have Always Wanted To Do

  1. Drive across the USA. Why? I don’t know, I would probably hate it, but I read ‘On the Road’ as a teenager and it’s been burned into my brain as something I must do. C refuses to let me. We will see.
  2. Write a book. Again, with the I don’t know why I would probably hate it.
  3. Go to India. Little worried about dysentery though. Possibly wait until Dynsentery vaccine is available.
  4. Go on some kind of cooking school course. I like cooking, I am reasonably good at cooking, but would love to get to grips with some of the more complicated techniques and be taught by someone who knows what theyre doing.
  5. Relax and have fun in social situations.

Five Things I Am Into Right Now

  1. My woman.
  2. Learning how to make wordpress work as a CMS for idiots, and converting existing designs to wordpress themes.
  3. Figuring out my future career. (does ‘having to’ count as the same as ‘into’?
  4. Macro photography with my cameraphone.
  5. Wasting time

Five People To Tag:

Aikaterine, er, everyone else has already done it, or has blogsploded.



musical memes

The wigster has tagged me once again (I still have the 8 random facts in my drafts…only 5 more to go) but this time its related to music, so requires virtually no brain power. Which is nice.
Something to do with picking a tune that inspires you to write or some such. Could be anything really, depending on the mood I’m in, but all in all, what gets my brain juices flowing is generally something that flows, not too bouncy, not too slow, something with a bit of a dark edge to it, but with energy, something that hints at tales to be told, thoughts, dreams and desires.
The soundtrack to my creativity keeps changing, but there are always old favourites. These guys are new favourites who I think are going to be inspiring me for a while yet. There is no video, so this is set to a donnie darko montage, which works pretty well. The movie had that kind of thoughtful dark edge, with a touch of total weirdness that seems to permeate my writing.

The tagging….well, there aren’t many people left that I read that haven’t already been tagged. I am Billy no-mates you see.
Here are the offical rules for those of you who can be bothered to participate and were confused by my vague summation above:

The assignment: Think of THE song that most inspires you to write, whether it gives you an idea for a story, script or just puts you into a better frame of mind AND/OR peek into the lyrics and find a verse that sums up the theme of whatever project it is you’re working on. If possible, post a video of the song to convey to readers the full context of the song and the mood it puts you into. Finally, send the assignment to five other writers to do as well.

I tag the chimp, he seems to be spending some serious time on youtube recently, so he’s bound to have some gems, and his writing ain’t half bad too 😉
Ms Purrr, because we share the same music taste, and it will freak her out to have a horde of nutters suddenly descend on her peaceful blog about art and tomatoes.
Anonymous mum, because she is always writing about those she loves and never about herself, bless her heart.
secretlifeofamanicdepressive because it’ll keep her busy until she can afford to eat, and I want to see if there’s any bonzo dog doo dah band on youtube.
Aikaterine, because she has a couple of days to kill and needs a blog kick start.

All done. I can go back to being ill now.

I give in…

Darksimpson And if you saw that post title in a feed reader, no doubt you were thinking, ‘oh god, not another meandering laundry list of sorrow…
But no! See me be hip to be erm, square…is that a thing, or did Huey Lewis just make that up? I don’t know, but nonetheless, I can play too…
(I wonder what happened to old Huey, and indeed, his News? Anyone seen them recently? Perhaps they trobadour at your local hole in the wall bar, somewhat craggier, and less carefree, playing for beer, still knocking out ‘the power of love’ albeit without those top notes…good lord these are the parentheses that would not die)

So, without further ado (or any more Huey Lewis asides) I present my Simpsons alter ego, Dark Simpson. And his cat, Sparky.

Sponsor Note: This post was brought to you by Tesco Finest Swiss Plain Chocolate with Espresso Praline Filling (chocolate made from premium grade cocoa beans sourced from Ghana, Venezuela and Ecuador)

Experiments and Observations on Different Kinds of Air

This post was originally a comment, from the last post, in reply to a comment from PA, and it might not make any sense in parts, but I figure, why waste a load of words on a comment, when I can recycle it as a post and save myself some bother? Energy efficient that is… Go with it. You know you want to. 

The newest computer can merely compound, at speed, the oldest problem in the relations between human beings, and in the end the communicator will be confronted with the old problem, of what to say and how to say it. – Edward R. Murrow

I did a template change in lieu of actually writing anything.
I feel bad for not writing, but then, I wonder why? In case I lose the two or three people who occasionally check my blog? Kind of pointless really. Its not why I started a blog, but theres always that pressure isn’t there? To entertain…It kind of spoils it for me. And I have lost a sense of that community with some of my favourite bloggers going quiet, or just plain vanishing. Everyone seems quiet recently.
And of course I am busy with work, so can’t afford to spend a whole day spilling my guts onto a page. Or rather, preparing to spill my guts, and then spending an hour actually translating the spillage into words ;)

And., there’s the depressive guilt that always comes when you’re actually feeling okay, and not really that depressed. I feel like I shouldn’t write about good things because it will just piss off everyone I know in the whole world because everyone I know is manically depressed, bipolar, suicidal, or otherwise generally hacked off with life.

Pole to Polar has blogged recently about the whole Top Trumps of madness scenario (does Top Trumps work as a metaphor over the pond? Not sure) so I won’t linger too much on that. The ‘I am madder than thou’ one upmanship. I feel faintly embarassed at feeling relatively ok. But I shouldn’t, because I’ve struggled to get to a state of stability for so long, and I’ve sacrificed so much to get here.
Speaking of Pole to Polar, they blogrolled me a while back, but never ever answer any of my comments or acknowledge my presence in their electronic world. I find it a bit spooky. I get paranoid. Am I just saying really stupid stuff and being ignored? Theyre not a huge responder to comments like some bloggers, but I’ve seen a fair few responses to other people, but never to me. Maybe they’re scared of responding to me? Maybe I am looking at it the wrong way…maybe they think I am weird and don;’t respond in case it encourages me ;) But then why blogroll me?
Oh, I don’t know. These are the tiny tiny details that slightly worry mentalists even when they’re reasonably stable. I don’t wake up in the night screaming ‘why won’t they talk to me!’ but you know…it nags doesn’t it…


It brings me neatly onto another topic that has been nibbling at my cortex recently…the whole blog thing…now I can really only see the point of blogging if you get comments, and you respond to comments, and you can actually have a meaningful debate between intelligent people. Just blogging, and getting nothing back, to me, is a bit pointless. Yes ok, it gets the thoughts out, but I am looking always to growth and progression, and I know full well that listening only to myself and my own points of view is limiting and will only lead to me thinking a load of utter mad nonsense. We all need other voices to drag us (kicking and screaming) back to ground zero, the centre of our mentalist wanderings. We, especially need dialogue because we are all prone to those madcap Pirsig-like blinkered voyages into proving the world is round using only the power of our minds.
You (PA, still talking to you yes) have a fair amount of commenters, and respond well, and therefore get some discussion going, when you’re not blogging about stuff that people don’t know what to say to of course. You have been blogging for a good while now, you blog, well, a lot, and have built up a number of readers, some from the medical sector, some from the mentalist sector, some from the kinky lesbian freak sector ;) etc.
Thats basically what it takes to get a goodly amount of commenters. That and doing a lot of commenting yourself.
And I think being female is good, as its reasonably rare for guys to bother commenting on other guys blogs. Don’t know why…I do it, but it is quite rare.

I am losing the thread…
Erm. Anyway. I want more discussion on my blog. But I don’t blog enough, I have no way of attracting enough intelligent people here, and it all seems a waste of time. And the people I like are the very people who just explode and then disappear. Regularly. Its a pain.
Ok. Fuck it. I just posted in the comments section. At least that way I won’t attract any more readers! You have to be really fucking dedicated to check the comments section of a 2 week old post! Well, check the latest comments list anyway. Which I do at all the blogs I read, but I don’t know how many people do.
you see, I’d love to ask a load of questions about how people blog, and how they read, but I’d get maybe two answers, so it would just be depressing. Maybe I should just do guest blogs on a more popular and hip blog. Steal an audience…
Minx? Dame? You need a blogger? )

The more elaborate our means of communication, the less we communicateJoseph Priestley


****Incoming message from the big giant Ian*****

‘… the history of Society is only, after all, a symptom of increasingly more organised madness.’ – Kilgore Trout

Bill used to give himself lots of lateral downtime, or so he called it. This would involve him, maybe a beer and smoke, and lots of time drinking tea. It would help his creative preserves he said, sort of allowing himself to become sort of a better being, he said.
Strange thing was, Bill never did seem to get any better as the weeks would slip by.
Then one day, there was mum making mince in the kitchen on this summery evening and Bill turned from where he sat on the backdoor step , saying casually
“Thats it Marjorie, i have decided its probably better if i lived the rest of my life as a Bedouin Dancer”
and so off he went. I never did find out, but i like to think that somewhere in the corner of the world Bill does still whirl away in long desert robes.
And so it went.
When i was 23 i believed my friend was trying to poison me. I saw the vapours, and we didn’t like each other too much at the time anyway.
When i was 21 i believed Pearl Jam wrote a song about having seen me at a live gig.
When my Dad was fifty, my sister once told him about eating healthily, eating pasta. He always counted the pasta shells: thirty to make a good meal.
And on it went.
All life is, is one whole big collection of stories. I made this decision years after hearing that infamous ‘The Whole World’s a Stage, and we merely actors upon it’ – it took me a while to really grasp it Shakespeare, i guess i was always a windowshopper decider. Just like all the books on my shelves over the years have grown and shrunk, my life has been filled up with faces and lives and ideas. Little fragments of dreams and other worlds appearing and gently snuffing out, forever forgotten. Some enduring books and even whole collections stand constant and dusty, assured of their faded importance.
Life doesn’t have to make sense.
So this was it, i had decided to not sleep with my ex tonight. I would go around, collect some of my stuff, we’ll talk and watch a movie, she will see that i am still a nice guy and i will leave this evening both of us feeling like we are better individuals. I felt good, imagining myself like a Sufi Prince detached and joyful about my life. This would just be the beginning, i would start being a better human being across the board; i’d be able to politely turn down the lures of drink or boredom or melodrama. I’d start studying again and using my life creatively.
The next morning found me sauntering back home, and so on it went.
maybe i should get off the tablets-
i was chatting to a friend of mine today, this was the guy who told me a while ago: ‘It takes three years to recover from a breakdown’,
he seemed to be a little sad this time. I don’t know, something in his eyes maybe. My friend’s an ex-soldier, living on a frantic low income as a builder. he drinks hard, harsh tinnies in the town square – he’s a great guy; he’s always willing to have a cheery word. I remember once, before work i was sat, 8:45am in one of his old cars, with two of the local town street celebrities. We passed around some harsh weed and one of the guys behind me started going on about the beer he’d spilt in his lap. He’s got a wonderful alliterative use of the most disgusting swearwords of all time. The ex-soldier start saying ‘calm down, calm down’ in that slightly scary paranoid way: this was it, i thought. My Life is a Comedy. I am a bizarre rerun of Last of the Summer Wine.
He asked me what i was doing with myself when i saw him today, i always say an embarressed ‘Nothing.’ Shit. What are you supposed to say to that? I wander around morose, i shake with fear in my own home, i try to get by. He always gives me strange advice about ‘Doing What You Want To Do!’ going back to university, become a proffessional guitarist. I like him for that.
But today he seemed a little sad, almost as if he sensed my embarrasment, my reticience at our usual, ritualized question.
It takes three years to get over a nervous breakdown, my last breakdown was 20 months ago.
And so it goes.
Earlier this year i wrote a story about an improbable interview between various future me’s. They had all been different versions of me from different future dimensions, about six years from now. The current me (2007 me that is) interviewed them.
They kept on saying the same thing.
The first time i had sex was on a friends sofa at the end of a party. I was stoned, and fumbled a lot. The lass who had chosen me had a little daughter, only a baby, and she was committed to study Law and maybe go to University so she could get to know how to keep custody of her kid. i sometimes wonder what happened to her and her kid, what her alternate future dimensionary self would be like. I actually had an experience of meeting a future alternate (but at the time current i should say) dimensionary version of another young mother i knew.
Her name was Dannielle …(Bossinau?? I never could figure out how to say or spell her name). We knew each other as juniors and kids, i had a bit of a crush on her.
One day a friend in a college class was detailing to me the finer points of the CB radio. It was a little world that suddenly opened up for him who was like me i guess, a bit of a loser. A little whole community of people who talked to their husbands working on the passing boats, people chatting away about their corners of their world and the tasteless obsession of listening-in to the emergency service radios. Anyway, it turned out he had talked to Dannielle! He didn’t know her, but apparently she’d asked after me because she found out we both went to the same college. She’d dropped out after school, and had a kid. She lived with her parents, and was cheery.
I never heard about her again for years until i met her future (but at the time current) alternate dimensionary self. One summer break from University i bumped into her outside her old house just a street away from my estate. She looked really good, had her baby with her and i was struck by how things could have been different, how my expectations of her were so removed from this version of her.
Maybe i’ve got a single-mother thing.
When i was 28 i still believe that maybe, somehow improbably my future could be ‘saved’ by a glorious secret talent or luck or divine will.
When my Dad was 28 he believed that if he opened the front door a gunman would blow his legs off.
Puts it in perspective, sometimes.
Another other girl i had an unbearable crush on was my sister’s best friend. Her brother didn’t have any future alternate dimensionary selves. Her brother and his best friend killed himself in his car. He used to help me out at the Boys Brigade Youth Club. I kinda idolized him, in a teenage way. The dissappearence of his future alternative selves had a huge impact in our community, far more than i had realised until, years later my ex-fiancee (who had come from the same town i had, had used to go to the same places but we had met in a far off university in another Country) had told me the story of the couple of well-liked boys who had killed themselves in their car outside one of my old haunts.
Their tragedy escaped me really, like a transatlantic cement truck gliding past me on a foggy night. But the wider community didn’t know that my sister’s best friend’s brother had written what i still think is one of the most touching comments upon life. Apparently a part of it read; that all he wanted to do was to go live in Middle Earth with the elves.
One alternate me did most of the things i never did. When he was 9 he really believed in the power of that title ‘Man of the Match’ for throwing himself bodily against opponants as Defender. Shit. Why not- its not as if he was ever going to score or anything. He liked winning the mock boxing fights my friends used to have at 15. He probably even learned to write well, get good marks at Literature and now works as a clerk or a bookseller. His life is probably small, still in Southend but he feels comfortable, and confident, happy.
He’s lucky, he never made the mistakes i did, or the divine will looked favourably on his life. Just think, if there really are infinite dimensions then in one of them there is the Perfect You!!
What a jerk they would be at parties.
I wonder if the other alternate me sometimes stops at a window, before he answers his partner cheerfully and honestly as he always does. I wonder if he too is ever scared that Reality can shrink schizophrenically, in fragments.
There is this state i get into sometimes, when i’m really really high that somehow all of these stories make sense… My life is part of some big pattern, and its no big deal to worry about anyway. It’s peaceful.
Another alternative future me i bump into regularly goes to television and radio production shows. The kinds which like audiences to cheer and laugh or make votes and things. He tells me that if junkies were given adequate places to live, with reasonable rents you wouldn’t have this image of them all living on mattresses in squatted flats robbing bins for food. Poverty and addiction are directly related, as the Ratfarm experiments showed. If you were given a better and better environment to expand into you would, logically have no reason to try to escape it.
I feel sorry for this future alternative me. He’s doing well, but he became better friends than i did with Adam and Smiley, two of the older guys in my college philosophy class.
Red haired anarchist-buddhist Adam doesn’t have any future dimensionary selves either – we never knew but Adam had a genetic heart complaint, and once, taking whizz he just dropped down dead. Adam himself knew about it of course, which was probably why he started taking the whizz. I guess he just didn’t like having all these alternative future dimensionary selves running around.

(sub)missive from: Sacred Chao Brigade. Hail Eris.

What do you want from me?

In a nod to echimp and in the spirit of lightening the load that this blog must sometimes place on its readers in uttery misery and self absorption, I continue my recent trend of not whining constantly and present some interesting search queries that enabled our fellow stoatpilgrims to stumble upon this humble altar of weasel worship.

club weasel
Yes. We are here. Speak up friend.

scariest things
Well, *blush* you flatterer you…

two steps from hell
About that, yes. Possibly even closer.

Wossat then? Probably one of those clever dx things that everyone else seems to know so much about. Hang on *scurries away to wikipedia*. Ok, I think you mean Cyclothymia which is a chronic, but less extreme, form of bipolar disorder that consists of short periods of mild depression alternating with short periods of hypomania. The onset of each phase is separated by short periods of normal mood. This diagnosis is excluded if the patient has had either a manic episode or a major depressive episode.
Yes, what of it?

ferret dominance
I’m all for it.

honey possum teeth wikipedia
Er. Ok.

university of birm. swim lessons
I think you wandered of the path there stranger…

what makes people wake up dizzy
What makes people wake up not dizzy would be more useful to me.

why do potoroos stink
I don’t know, why do potoroos stink? *waits expectantly*

all that’s sacred comes from youth
dedication, naive and true
with no power, nothing to do
i still remember, why don’t you…don’t you…
this is not for you
this is not for you
this is not for you
oh, never was for you…fuck you…

ferret papaya harmful
Weasel kumquat encouraging.

clever titles for gray wolves
Sir Pointy Teeth Hacklespike the Third.

hints that you should know when you run into a human trafficked
Good lord. Erm. Call the police? Why on earth would you be asking such a thing?

professional ferret pictures
I may have some in my posession yes.

small eurasian mammal closely related to the weasel
Mink! Stop the clock!

five memories

Ok, nobody has asked me to play in one of their fun bloggy games of ‘five things that I hide under the bed’ or squirrel knows what else..( that would be quite an interesting one actually) so I’m going to invent my own. And it’ll be far more interesting…

So, ahem, I announce to you, my bloglings, the latest and greatest meme in a list type format to grace the blogospheres stage…
Tis ‘5 memories.’ Bollocks to rules. You’re all smart people. Make your own rules. I’ll tag 1 person and see if they can be arsed to continue. If the tagee is too busy to continue my meme within 5 days I will tag someone else until I find someone worthy 😉

Tootoototooototooooooooooooooo….. (that was a bugle…)

Five Memories

1. The Pink Panther ruined my childhood. When I was about 8, I was watching the Pink Panther (cartoon not film) and one of my parents (they were still married at the time) must have pointed out something that was going on, and I couldn’t see it. I recall a moments pause, and then a few more testing questions about what I could see or not see on the screen. I had an appointment at the opticians the next week, and returned with a pair of tortoise shell spectacles which as a painfully shy child totally destroyed my world. I was so embarassed and traumatised that I didn’t wear them at school, and made it through school partially blind, unable to see the blackboard at all, copying notes from the person next to me, or just not bothering to at all, or squinting a lot.
This in itself was traumatising, and probably just as bad to my psyche than wearing the glasses would have been. As a shy child I got my fair share of taunts and bullying, but not to any great extent, and I think if I’d started wearing the glasses at 8, suffered the few days or so of childish taunts, my school life would have been so much better, my education would certainly have been better, and who knows what other effects it would have had. I got contact lenses when I went to 6th form college at 16. I wear glasses now. I don’t bother with lenses.

2. Between the ages of about 8 and 11 I was in a group of 4 friends that was oddly dominated by one boy in particular, who ruled with an iron fist through the threat of casting out those who did not do what they were told. To a child of this age, where cliques are your entire world, and being alone in the playground is a fate worse than death this was a particularly effective threat. At that age consolidated action doesn’t occur to you. Every man for himself. Occasionally one of us was a bad friend, and was cast out temporarily. I remember one of the group being cast out, and just followed us folornly around the playground, enduring taunts and jibes. I remember thinking how sad it was, and despairing at the world. Yes. I was depressed at 8.
After junior school, at age 10 everyone was bumped up to a middle school (age 10-13), and there were two schools in different areas you could choose to go to. I don’t recall if there was any actual truth in it, but somehow it seemed that there was a possibility that the evil one, El Dictatore, might be going to the Other school, while the three of us would be going to the same school. This was, for a short time, like a golden shining light at the end of a very dark tunnel. It was a shot at freedom, and we didn’t have to do anything to get there, just hang on, and pretend to be upset at this tragic parting of ways. We were all fucking elated, but even when the evil one wasn’t around, we didn’t express to each other how much we wanted this to happen. In the end it didn’t happen, we all went to the same middle school. Shortly after moving to this school, I did something or other that annoyed the evil one, and was given the ultimatum of obeying or being cast out. I, with a moment of courage that to this day I am proud of told the evil one to get lost, and wandered off into the concrete jungle that is the playground. I was free. I was with a new group of friends (who were also pains in the asses, but less so) within half an hour. For the next few months the evil one made all kinds of efforts to win me back, including inviting me round to his house on my own (a reward unheard of before), but I resisted. I did remain friends with one of the others in the group, who I had been friends with prior to the group forming. The group broke apart gradually after that. I had lifted the curtain and everyone had seen the boy behind it, operating the machinery. He had no power after that…

3. As a child, at night when I was in bed, I would often hear incessant talking in my head, like dozens of people all talking at once. I could never make out what anyone was saying though. It didn’t seem odd at the time. Seems pretty fucking odd now. Just one of the many odd things that used to go on when I was a child.

4. Speaking of stuff that happened at night as a child. Before going to sleep, I used to close my eyes (obviously) and I would see patterns – yes, nothing unusual there, but they were incredibly vivid, not your usual floaters and light-induced visual stimuli. It was like a matrix of dots that would move, coalesce and twirl in amazing shades of purple, blue, green and yellow. The patterns were always different, but after a time would always coalesce into a trippy fractal tunnel down which i would zoom, it looked much like sci-fi shows these days do wormholes with CGI, but of course back then they didn’t have such visual effects so I didnt’ have that as a model. After tunneling for a while, everything would change again, and the foreground would dissolve, and behind I would see this jawdropping web of interconnected nodes and matrices, which was curiously bleached of colour. It was always exactly the same. I could never willfully bring this vision up, nor remember exactly what it looked like. I had to go through the process of watching the patterns, doing the tunnel – then the matrix.
I always thought that this was what was behind everything in the universe. That I was seeing the web of life.
I think I still do. I can’t see it anymore. I can’t even see the cool patterns anymore.

5. My parents divorced when I was 10. I can’t remember being that troubled at the time. When my mum told me I don’t recall saying much beyond ‘Oh, ok.’ I can’t recal feeling much of anything, but I was like that as a child. Strangely stunted at times, and overly emotional at others. Hell, I still am.
After he moved out, which seemed to be pretty much straight away in my head, but who knows, I would stay at my dads every other weekend. My dad and me have always had a strange relationship. He is awful at expressing any kind of emotion. I make him look like a robot, and I have problems expressing myself to anyone other than partners and very very close friends (i.e Ian) and my blogfriends (who don’t count cos they’re imaginary).
My dad and I have never hugged as I recall, never told each other we love one another (although I did force him to do it over email a couple of years ago after I had a massive rant at him and blamed him for all my troubles, shortly after a nervous breakdown), we never have much in the way of conversation. We are happy enough to spend time together, but it’s usually fairly quiet.
Anyway, I think it was about a year or two after the divorce, and I was at my dads house, listening to some music on the headphones on Saturday morning – I think I was going through a Queen and Michael Jackson phase at the time.
I don’t know how it happened, but my dad said to me that if I ever wanted to spend more time at his house, I could, I just had to ask. I didn’t know what to say. This was possibly the first time my dad had ever actually said anything like this to me, and I had no training or skills to deal with such a statement. I was embarrassed, and confused. I just mumbled something like ‘ok, sure’. It is probably the closest my dad has ever come to telling me he loves me. If I’d had an ounce of courage I would have said ‘I love you dad, I want to be here all the time’ but I couldn’t say anything, or express my feelings. He’d trained me too well.
I stayed every other weekend until I was about 16.

Ian, you’re it.