Poster Paint and Politics

March 14, 2011

Hey! So, I’m still trying to get to grips with where this blog’s actually going. Back in the mists of time I started out my last blog with a list of three objectives – namely, a “theatre” (?) to record what I was doing whether anyone wanted to read it or not, an archive for my own personal use, and a box of rats. I’m fairly sure it achieved at least two out of these three objectives. I’m pretty much an obsessive archivist a lot of the time, to the extent that I’ve got enormous stashes of bits of paper collected from throughout my life collected together in various places. One day, I’ll buy 50 scrapbooks and put them all in order, hopefully trimming out all the bank statements and other unnecessary ephemera that’s made its way in there.

Anyway, the last blog also turned into a fusion of stream-of-consciousness ramblings about what I’d been up to, mild bitching about how my life wasn’t thrilling enough to warrant having a blog, the occasional poem, and the occasional thing I’d made up. I’m not sure I can make any guarantees that this is going to be any different, but hopefully as long as I can stick to regularly writing stuff on it, it’ll assume a shape of its very own.

Also, when I was writing the other blog I was certainly younger, and by extension probably much more drunk all the time. I’m not sure if that’s a help or a hindrance to documenting one’s life, but it does mean there’s a whole lot more incoherence and ‘wrong bread’ and Tom hacking at the walls of the flat with the axe that we got him for his birthday and sleeping on heaps of rags. Not that there’s necessarily going to be a complete absence of that here.

It’s been quite an eventful weekend. The sort of weekend that was lots of fun, but doesn’t necessarily leave you fresh and refreshed on a Monday morning. On Thursday me and Anna went to the Hove Beer Festival. Last year was chaos. Matt the Cripple showed up all wild eyed and crazy and got thrown out of the Hove Beer Festival within minutes (to be honest, I’m not entirely sure how he ever managed to get in) and then we got into all sorts of hot butter at the Neptune. I thought the manager was trying to choke me but it turned out Matt was just trying to save me by pulling at my scarf. Anyway, more of Matt the Cripple to come. This year was thoroughly civilised (Alistair informs me that the Neptune has since burnt down, but thankfully, I have an alibi) and entertaining in the usual strange way – wandering around the brightly lit Hove Town Hall filled with barrels of ale and real ale entheusiasts, along with a place where you can complete your collection of mid-70’s bar mats and other “breweriana”. The first time I ever went to Hove Beer Festival I nearly got mowed down by a bus on the way home, and then fell asleep in the Evening Star in front of Anna’s spanish friend, Juanma, who is an anglophile and on his first trip to the UK, and was delighted I was living up to the English stereotype of drunks who pass out in pubs by 10.30 in the evening. This time, we leapt on a bus before 10.30 and sailed home in style. Bizarre, but also refreshing!

On Friday, I tried to make the first souffle I’ve ever attempted. Straight out of our 1970’s vegetarian cookbook, and packed full of loads of pulverised parsnips and an incredible quantity of eggs. I’ve been struggling my way through “The Journey” ever since Nicky P gave it to me for Christmas – it’s a hell of a read; almost like Tristram Shandy for the Third Way generation. I showed Alex and Ben the filthy bits, and we drank whisky and talked politics. I can’t work out if I’m mostly into politics because of a deep held belief in equality and fairness and red blooded socialism and the redistribution of wealth, or just because of the gossip. I love the fact that Tony bemoans the gossip as “getting in the way of policy”, whilst writing a thoroughly gossipy tome himself. Lucy can’t believe I haven’t read Cherie’s book yet, but I think that might be one toke over the line. Our new housemate, Emma-Jane, works in a very posh private school, and so we suggested that she could perhaps subtly influence the ‘tories of the future’ by sneaking social democratic messages into their eduction, but it might be a bit tricky.

Saturday was Jacob’s birthday party, which involved dressing up as David Bowie going to a Venetian Masked Ball. I didn’t know that was a thing, but apparently it’s something that David Bowie does. I’m not sure what he looks like when he does it, but I attempted to capture the ambience by back-combing my hair and making a mask out of a strip of red cloth and putting on my silver trousers and then painting my yachting jacket – we used it for the Bad Clown costume when we put on Glue Velvet last year, but it got totally covered in fake blood and thus became useless as a white jacket, so I painted the lapels red but that made it look a bit elvissy so I painted green horizontal stripes on it. I think it looks pretty classy and could possibly be a good addition to my summer wardrobe but Anna reckons it looks like a madman broke onto a yacht and stole a jacket and then went crazy with a load of poster paints. The truth is probably somewhere between the two.

And so after chocolate cornflake cake at Alice’s house for Andy’s birthday surprise (part of the surprise being that his birthday was five days ago) we wandered into town where I caught up with my cousin Adam who was also in town by chance, which was lovely (and we talked about politics – again! Various members of my family actually work in politics, whilst I’m just a bit of an amateur…) and then we went to the party which was great – I had to ditch the mask after a while as I think the eyeholes were slightly too wide, but if I can fix that I reckon that’s also a good summer look. And then George and Matt the Cripple turned up, and Matt was totally wild-eyed and crazy (this is actually a recurring theme for Matt the Cripple) and that was ok once Jacob & Ramona worked out who they were and where the hell they had come from.

Sunday, sunday, sunday. Bed, newspapers, tea, movies. This is where we need to be.

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