Monday, 30 August 2010

Down or Off

I’m worried that I'm turning into my dad. He does have a very good head of hair mind, and keeps a fabulous cellar, so I suppose it wouldn’t be all bad. I would be worried though if I started to choose green cords from M&S based on practicality alone.

No the key reason is because having mastered whiskey, marmalade and red wine my interests are now turning to radio 3. I like it, the music does have a proper tune, and there aren’t any young people shouting or trying to shank me up.

You see sometimes I just can’t listen to my natural home - radio 4, if John Humphries is ranting annoyingly at some politician so I have to find an alternative. But I can’t have Radio 1 as it’s too noisy with hoodies having their fuck ons or piss ups bleeped out. Radio 2 is ok sometimes, but too much inane Daily Mail chat, and it’s usually John Barrowman or Michael Ball talking about Lesley Garrett. So I turn to 3, and I find a lovely idyllic valley of calm, with bunnies hopping and swifts soaring above on an Elgar stylee breeze. Or it’s German dissonance and then I have to revert to silence, which is definitely underrated.

I suppose the next chapter of turning into my father, if we class marmalade, whiskey, red wine and radio 3 as the first four, will have to be telling stories about why Raymond Baxter is a very rude man – I’ll let you know, just as long as it isn’t the cords.

You’ll have noticed I’m using a lot of street words – ‘piss up’, ‘hoodies’ etc., well we’re all very urban these days. Apparently if you diss somebody’s Bedouin then they’ll shank you up. I was pleased when I heard this though because people don’t discuss tents as much as they once did. And I'm all for others camping.

To try and learn me up some more new street lines I had a look at an online urban dictionary and low and behold Dan was there. Apparently the young refer to needing a Danny la Rue. ‘I need a Danny La Rue’, ‘I'm off for a Danny.’, Who's just been for a Danny?’. Also the cock en ees say 'you ain't got a Danny La Rue mate" for when someone is being clueless.

Keeping up with the urban motif of this instalment I’ve been Banksy'd. Well it might not be a Banksy but it isn’t simply your normal tag. It is of a stylised light bulb which someone has placed upon my pebble dash with a stencil. My first thought was that the electricity board were simply marking their manor, like a dog uses a lamp post. I’m thinking of having someone from the Royal Academy  round to verify it’s authenticity, then having that bit of wall removed, and retiring on the proceeds. Knowing the Council though it’ll be painted over, without my consent, in a different shade to the rest of the wall, before I’ve even finished flicking through my static home catalogue and choosing between a Pageant in Great Yarmouth and a park home in Scarborough.

Wednesday, 25 August 2010

Weight Loss Wonder

I’m not sure whether I’ve mentioned this before, but I do think I should bring out my own fitness video. Well I seem to be the only person on the planet that hasn’t. I was perusing the aisles in WH Smith this lunchtime, oh how Catford doth overfloweth with top hole boutiques, and I was drawn to the DVD section, always on the look out for something new to add to the lovefilm list you see.

The top ten however is chocca with fitness DVDs. Now I never knew you could get as fat as some of the people in their before shots. I know the industry expectation is that you will slouch and breath out, and I know having a kiddie can give you a bit of a bulge, but ladies and gentlemen there is no need to be this fat! I hope that ice is reinforced! 

Moving along the shelf I nearly spat out my barley sugar when I can across fatty from steps. She takes ‘Oh yes I have put on a couple of extra pounds – damn those full fat yoghurts’ to a new and hither to unreachable level.

There’s also letitita dean – she’s down to a six and has found her waist, somebody from strictly come anorexia – no is wasn’t Bruce, Davina ‘ yes even your little bit of grey’, someone from corrie, Natalie Cassidy’s then and now and several people who must be famous for being on big brother or for living in a back to back ‘celebrities on the toilet’ – that sort of thing. Oh yes and how could I have forgotten Coleen Nolan’s disco burn! It is a lifestyle choice whichever way you slice the cream cake.

So if there’s money to be made, well why not. Ive got the wee fit now, and a good collection of jogging bottoms, I think they’re called sweat pants these days. I’ve unlocked advanced hoola, and my tight rope walking is coming on in leaps and bounds, so there has to be spectator mileage in that.

Now what I don’t have is a head band or any gold jewellery – so I’ll need to crack on with that. And leg warmers, I best check which shade are in this season and then log on to Pineapple.

So I’m quite excited now, fitness and fame, muck and brass.

I’ll keep you posted.

Saturday, 14 August 2010

Leaving for Gatwick - July 2009

It's twerley - that's all I can say. Having spent the night mostly half awake running through fictitious conundrums that my subconscious thought needed clearing up in order for me to safely reach morning.

I sometimes wonder whether I will always be tired. Always to bed too late, and always too early to rise.

Although it is yet 5.30 am my carriage on this Gatwick Express is already chocker with elderly blond (dyed) queens and Japanese girls. Where are they all going? Surely they can't all be heading to the Outer Hebrides? We'll have to see.

Oh dear Cruella De Ville has just got on - sans Dalmatians

My Addison Lee was perfect - oh how I love the certain, prompt, quiet comfort they provide. Such a good way to start a trip. So much better than Carol's Cars, where you are always on the edge of your seat waiting for the call to tell you how late your car will be.  With Addison Lee you know 5 minutes before it is due you'll receive a text telling you it is outside. Smart polite drivers who take your case for you. Anyway 20 mins door to door, so as always I was well and truly early.

Everyone is so tired, too tired even for their faces to form recognisable expressions. It is as if gravity and evolution have turned us all droopy and uncoordinated. A man just did a dance as he came through the door as it tried to claim him. He was unable to muster the required - stop -press button - wait to open - walk through.

The morning sun is beautiful over the river. How I love central London early in the day - as it is waking up.

When they say 'sorry for any delay' surely they mean 'the' delay? So all my earliness has been eaten away by their tardiness.

I see the lady with the Pashmeena is travelling EasyJet. I wonder whether she's seen my BA luggage tag - well actually it's a Concorde luggage tag. She's probably green with it - she is developing a twitch though - I wonder if it is related?

Why do buildings on industrial estates always have slanted roofs? Do they want to look all Bart Simpson stylee? Probably trying to get on the bandwagon of Lisa's 2012 Olympic fame!

Sunday, 8 August 2010

The ups and downs of being different

“You're not like other boys are you William?”

I can’t now remember who said that to me, it might have been my Gran who still today in her dementia isn’t certain about me. She sometimes asks me if I’m married, and then another time will give me a wry look, and say ‘you’re not really interested in girls are you’.

But in answer - well no, as a matter of fact I’m not, and thank the Lordy Lord for that!

I don't mind being different, and if I were the same as everyone else it would probably make me want to go into a maximum security twilight home for the bewildered even more than the vagaries of everyday life does already.

My most recent experience of being different took place in a cafe on England's glorious east coast.

People were talking about me, looking, muttering, they were confused, I had confused them by being different.

What had I done?

Well I'd ordered the all day vegetarian breakfast. They'd never heard of such a thing. I was so obviously different, I was an outsider. No one had ever had the 'meatless' breakfast before. It caused a stir.  I wasn't in a mobility scooter, I wasn't wearing velour for comfort only, my legs weren't the same thickness from start to finish etc.; I was certainly and obviously different. Thank God!

As a veggie, liberal, middle class, graduate, homosexual (yes Ladies it's true) Londoner, I quite often tick the different box. I don’t want to always be the same though (apart from when you're all having bangers and mash) so am quite happy with that.

At different times in my life I have been different for different reasons, for example in primary school I had specs so I was four eyes, my Dad was a Doctor and I didn't say 'ain't' so I was posh, I was shit at football and so I was kicked.

In secondary school, I wasn't so different to everyone else, we were all laid back trendies, but perhaps if I'd been a hot blooded straight it would have made life easier - so I was a bit different, although I didn't really know. Mum always used to say that I had a long line of gorgeous girls at the door, and I did to some extent, I was only friendly with the bright and the beautiful - school allowed that. Even though never properly in lust, I was certainly in interest with some and in love (in my own way) with a couple and one in particular.

And I had some great friendships, which I am sure were facilitated by my being different. If I'd been straight I wouldn't have been able to get as close to some of the wonderful women that I did, they wouldn't have let me in. For even though I didn't quite get it right in my head until I was about 19, most of them knew from when I was 13 that I wasn't strictly the marrying type.

Even as a young Gay man I was different. I didn't sleep around, I wasn't too wild about drugs, I had a 'strange' some said, liking for monogamy, and I didn't really like clubbing 'til dawn - I was a bit different.

The joy of finally becoming middle aged when I was allowed to just say no to nonsense and say 'this is me take it or leave it' was very liberating. I used it wisely to remind myself that it is me who decides when I am the same and when I am different, and ultimately defines what that means for me and those I love.

And I realised that we shouldn't let anyone else decry our position or try to influence what we should or should not be doing, and when it is ok for us to be the same or different. We are never going to match each other exactly and that is fine, and good – we love those close to us for who they are, our differences and our similarities, our links to the past and the joy at continuing to share the same and different paths. We understand that we will drive each other spare from time to time – that's good, that's ok.

Thank god for being different.