The Fag Casanova

This is my brain, show me yours.

Crumpets and blinking.

Trying to write. Trying, always trying. Never doing. I’m not a Writer, I’m a Tryter.

Jesus, that’s awful. Anyway…

Hours pass by in seconds, as I sit staring into the A(4)byss, with a  furrowed brow, hands pressed against my temples, straining desperately to force ideas into life.

But nothing comes. It’s hopeless, there’s nothing to say.

After an unknown amount of time, the realisation strikes that my blinks have become synced with those of the cursor. How long has this been going on? What happens if it stops? What happens if I go faster, or blink the Top Cat theme tune. Will it follow suit? Am I in charge now?

I try to keep pace with the cursor, but it’s more difficult now I’m aware it’s happening. Unless, of course, the computer knows, that I now know, that our blinks have become synced, and is altering its pattern to keep me on my toes, throw me off the scent sort of thing.

But throw me off the scent of what? “Who cares!” I mutter under my breath, “I’m not going to let a silly machine get the better of me! This is how Skynet started! This is for ALL MANKIND! BLINK FOR VICTORY!” and redouble my efforts to keep time with its incessant blinking, and hopefully regain control.

This tense stand-off goes on for a further half an hour, until I remember there are crumpets in the cupboard. I shake my head, and try to concentrate, I mustn’t be swayed, this is too important!

Alas, their hot buttery siren call proves too strong, and my resistance evaporates. The machines win again, and I potter off to commiserate the impending demise of the human race, with hot tea and toasted snacks.

Pan-Kun revisits all the sports he’s tried previously to see if he’s improved.

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Labour Leadership Contest Round-Up.

Today’s the day, voting is over. A new, younger and distinctly less jowly phoenix shall rise from the ashes of our last shit-pile government, to lead Labour’s fight back against Clegg and Cameron’s “Coalition of the Peeled Sausage People.”

So, let’s have a look at who is in with a shout at the job, a lot has already been said about their political leanings, associations, education and such. So for that reason - and because I know precisely bollock all about that side of things - it will mainly be a list of what their faces look like. Which is important, obviously.

Andy Burnham:

First up, the outsider, probably not going to win, possibly because of his Blairite tendencies, but more likely due to the fact he looks like someone tried to sculpt a younger, sexier Michael Gove out of a bag of mashed dog cocks.

Burnham’s face is remarkable, he can go from looking reasonably normal to resembling a creepy Victorian sex doll that’s been dragged from a fire within the same sentence, here are a few other hastily thought out, badly worded ‘observations’:

- When he smiles, he looks a bit like a ‘Where are they now?’ photo-fit of Lord Snooty.

- His hair looks like it was chosen by a focus group.

- Burnham’s eyes make him look like an ageing, and particularly effete Cure fan, who has had to stop dressing like a distressed crow, quit his band and “Get a proper job”

Ed Balls:

So, we potentially could have a Labour Leader named Balls… Tee Hee Hee! Balls, there. Done, it is funny, and I like the idea that all the political parties have to elect people with surnames that describe what their face looks like, Cameron would have to change his name to David Upside-Down-Flayed-Fucking-Penguin-With-A-Childs-Drawing-Of-A-Face-On-It. Which wouldn’t fit so well on a ballot paper.

Ed is a genuine contender, despite looking like Gordon Brown getting sucked off in a wind tunnel.

He’s seen as the tough talking, footy loving, sleeves rolled up candidate who will POWER-FUCK the opposition with his thick, veiny policy shaft and leave them a weepy husk in the morning.

He puts the MAN into manifesto, etc. etc. But what of his face?

- He looks perpetually confused, as though his farts end with a question mark.

- His head is the same size as an entire boiled ham, as such he struggles to make his hair look like it belongs on a human being. It sort of looks like it’s been badly photoshopped on as an after thought, by an ADHD afflicted Sixth Form student.

- When he smiles, it’s as if he is wistfully reminiscing about the time he did a moony off the back of the school coach.

Ed Miliband:

The second Ed, and first of the two Miliband brothers in the race and according to the bookies, the hot favourite to win.

Fuck knows why, he’s blander than water soup and frankly just the idea of researching why he’s so popular makes my whole body yawn. So, lets just concentrate on his frankly astonishing fizzog shall we?

- He looks like a varnished jacket potato.

- His neck appears to join his face at the nose, with his chin effectively being an Adam’s apple.

- His head looks so squishy and malleable, it reminds me of those faces made from tights filled with sand you grew water-cress out of in Junior School.

- I imagine he spent most of his childhood happily pushing tonka toys up his rectum and gurgling proudly about it to his mum.

- He would be ideal for a live action Earthworm Jim film, wherein Jim has let himself go a bit, given up on life and got a job in the accounts department of a local granite worksurface company.

David Miliband:

The second Milibland brother, and possibly the most normal looking out of all the contenders. Which considering the gallery of wonky faced fuckboobs involved, is faint praise indeed.

Of the four, he’s the most polished and has perfected his Tony Blair affectations to such a level that if this goes tits up he could make a decent living as a look-a-likey strip-o-gram for joyless, middle class hen parties.

Here, words:

- In the right light, if you tilt your head and squint a bit he looks like a white Barack Obama. Unfortunately that’s where the similarities end.

- He sports what - I imagine - he considers to be a “winning smile” but, I’m sorry. The only contest that facial expression will win him, would involve standing in a field in Norfolk with a horse-collar round his neck, waiting for Bob Carolgees to pin a sad little rosette to his puffed out chest.

- His hair looks like a beret made from fuzzy felt.

That’s it, I could spend the whole day doing this, but I have stuff to do. Good luck to eveyone involved and may the best vaguely man-shaped, boggle-eyed fuck win.

N.B. I omitted Diane Abbott because I completely forgot she was running, which pretty much sums up her chances. 

Mercury Music Awards Round Up.

It’s that time of year again, when the dimmest lights of the British music industry battle it out to see who will get to have those irritating little stickers that never fully come off even with boiling water, stuck onto their album covers, which in time will look as sad as that local restaurant that once got nominated for ‘Local Eatery of the Year 2002’ and still polishes the little framed certificate every day, as if it still fucking means something 8 years on when they’re facing bankruptcy due to the sudden rise in popularity of Uzbekistani cuisine, which they refuse to even acknowledge, in favour of just guffing out the same fetid Prawn Frittatas in a Mango and Poppy-seed Jus, that was once their trademark dish.

*Ahem*

So, who is in the running this year? Well. As we’ve come to expect there’s the usual heady blend of dirgey, irrelevant indie acts, a token ‘Urban’ group that have been carefully selected by a man so middle class and white, he would shit the Daz doorstep challenge a new bum-tube.

But let’s get a proper rundown of who’s in with a chance:

Mumford & Sons: Since 2007, this self styled band of rabble-rousing fuck-a-billy beard enthusiasts have been on a mission to piss a luke warm, marzipan scented aural stream of twangly bum vomit into as many ears as possible. 

Reviews for ‘Sigh No More’

“It sounds like Chad Kroeger trying to shit out an entire skiffle group with his pants still on.” – Puzzler Magazine.

“Mumford & Sons are the aural equivalent of a tweed ghost’s disenchanted sigh” – JUGZ.

Kit Downes Trio: When asked to explain the surprise inclusion of the Jazz outfit to the line up, Mercury panellist Jeremiah Sansoreilles stated simply: “Who? Not a fucking clue mate, we just generally stick a nail through a copy of ‘Downbeat’ magazine and whoever it hits, gets a nom. Is that them then? I wondered what that smell was”

Blending a mixture of maudlin, self indulgent piano noodling and a complete disregard for the concept of Joy, we predict Kit Downes Trio will go on to bigger and better hotel lobbies in the not too distant future.

Reviews for Golden:

“What is this shit? It sounds like a clinically depressed child bashing a cat to death against an untuned piano” – Horse and Hound.

Biffy Clyro: Scottish favourites Biffy Clyro continue to pedal their inexplicably popular ‘Jimmy Eat World sodomising the lifeless corpse of Idlewild with an old horse cock’ noise to our nation’s troubled youths, and have earned themselves a nomination because, fuck it. I don’t know. They’re trying to tap into the Emo teen demographic for when the Mercury Compiler comes out? I’m honestly baffled.

Reviews for Only Revolutions:

“Jesus.” – Yorkshire Friend.

Dizzee Rascal: British Hip-Hop’s answer to Black Lace has now been nominated every year since 1974, winning the coveted sticker with ‘Boy in Da Corner’ and is back this year, mainly because organisers get all their Hip-Hop knowledge from that free magazine you get in Sainsbury.

Reviews for Whatever Dizzee Rascal’s New Album is Called, I Can’t be Arsed to Look It Up:

“Bonkers is to music, what Rohypnol is to the art of seduction” – Sudoku Challenge Monthly.

Paul Weller: After a surprise victory last year, Weller is back to defend his crown. At the age of 73, The Modfather continues to confound nay-sayers by simply choosing to ignore them and churn out more doddery old warty Dad-Rock regardless.

Reviews for Wake Up a Nation: 

"What is wrong with his fucking hair? It looks like he’s wearing a fire damaged deer-stalker" - Grazia

The XX: This year’s ‘Band Who Probably Deserve to Win, But Won’t.’ Let’s move on, shall we.

Laura Marling: The warbling Alt-Folk Succubus gets the nod again for her second album, which a lot of clueless record company executives are referring to as being “a lot darker than her first” and it is, in the same way the Harry Potter films have gotten progressively more violent and ‘edgy.’

Reviews for I Speak Because I can:

"I’m glad she can, I just wish she wouldn’t" - Metalhammer.

There are others, but to be quite frank. I can’t bring myself to listen to them. Here are some lazy, ill informed and hastily thrown together comparisons:

Foals - Total Life Forever: Fleet Foxes, The National and MGMT weepily tugging each other off in a darkened room.

Wild Beasts - Two Dancers: Talking Heads, fronted by Kate Bush. Only somehow dull.

Villagers - Becoming a Jackal: Rambly, limp wristed indie-folk bumbling, which they probably think is wistful, but sounds for all the world like a mash-up of members of Turin Brakes and Kings of Convenience calling their ex at 4am after a bottle and a half of Gin.

I am Kloot - The Sky at Night: Shane MacGowan attempting Americana in the style of a heliumed up Lou Reed.

Corrine Bailey Rae? Christ. Do you really care? 

The Expendables

This isn’t so much a review, as just a loose collection of observations on the film, possibly in a list format to save me having to bother stringing them together with actual sentences. Who knows, it’s exciting isn’t it.

You don’t need a review of this film, it’s exactly what you are expecting. Mindless explosions in the background, ageing slabs of meat clanging together in the foreground, all sound-tracked by balls-out, frat-boy power rock.

So it’s proper bloke-fodder, they might as well have just put up a picture of a bikini lady holding a beer with the word ‘BOOM!’ written on it for an hour and a half, it would have achieved the same thing.

Any way, here are 10 things that struck me whilst watching the film:

1) The cast, when stood together look like a selection of humorously shaped carrots with crooked faces drawn on them.

2) When they release The Expendables on DVD, they should include a free pair of bull’s testicles, a hammer drill and a photo of a pair of tits.

3) Jason Statham looks exactly like a bespoke crash test dummy, you can almost see the little targets on his temples.

4) Sly Stallone has fucked about with his face so much he could play Simon Weston in a biopic, with very little make up.

5) This is a better film version of The A-Team, than The A-Team Movie.

6) Dolph Lundgren looks like a vaguely animated woodcut of a shaved bear.

7) No amount of highlights, cavalier facial hair or ridiculous Huggy Bear cowboy-pimp clothing will ever distract you from how curious Mickey Rourke’s face is.

8) You could watch this film in a plummeting lift, with a furious tiger whilst bouncing up and down on a pogo stick and still follow the ‘plot’.

9) When Arnold Schwarzenegger ‘acts’ you can almost hear the scenery let out an audible sigh.

10) I actually quite enjoyed watching it, despite myself.

A bath.

I am sitting in the bath, staring into space, whilst the same few seconds of ‘Get Up Off Our Knees’ by The Housemartins skips listlessly on my old Ferguson record player. I have been doing so for ten minutes. I am unlikely to get out and resolve this.

It occurs to me that hitherto this point my life has been nought but a string of these moments, loosely tethered together with a vague notion of hope and cheap red wine.

I resume bathing; trying to tune out the sound of Paul Heaton chanting “Shake your head, ‘til it shakes no more” crackling away in the living room, when a thought crashes against the walls of my mind, again and again, for what feels like an eternity:

“This is my 28th year, I am 27 years old and I can’t remember the last time I washed my legs, do people do that. Wash their legs? I mean, naturally, women must. In the same way men wash their faces prior to shaving, but do men wash their legs? I always assumed it was something the shower took care of on its own.”

I finally do as Paul says, my brain cracks back into focus and I conclude that either I’ve been neglecting to perform a task that might very well be considered a cornerstone of adulthood, or that I am losing my mind.

I wash my legs, and the world continues to turn.

When things like this crop up, I like to write them down in a notebook. Primarily for my own piece of mind, as if one day I will have noted every single thought my brain is capable of, so that I can then piece them together into one huge idiotic blueprint of my inner psyche.

So, I did.

I also wrote this down.

And this.

Now I’m going to get out of the bath.

It’s not the end of the World…. Cup.

Last night England played a game of football against Algeria, they didn’t play very well. It was disappointing, and at times of extreme disappointment it’s difficult to know how to react isn’t it?

I was worried, so out of despair I turned on TalkSport to see what was on the minds of the radio listening public. If you’re not aware of TalkSport, it’s a digital cunt bugle that anyone with the ability to dial a phone can yell their opinions about sport through.

So, it’s Talking and Sport, it’s TalkSport. Well, sort of, it actually specialises in reactionary screeching by thick skulled, lorry driving fuckwhistles, pouring scorn over joy.

But I suppose ScreechScorn wouldn’t have been as catchy a name for a radio station.

Anyway, if you’re unsure how to react to England’s disappointing football performance, here’s a transcript of a TalkSport listener’s teeny tiny, Stella-pickled walnut ‘mind’:

"Booooooooo! Fucking boooo! Piss, moan, piss, moan, SACK EVERYTHING, a hundred grand a week? What about the nurses Brian? They’d probably do a better job to be honest, grumble, grumble, not fit to wear the shirt, no passion, no heart, booooo! Scorn, misery, hoplessness, this wouldn’t have happened if Harry Redknackers had been in charge, my gran could do better, I’ve got a penis like an otter, boooo! It’s the end of the world, despair, despair, what about Cole? What about poor old Theo? Bring back Pearce, at least he had PASSION, spirit of ‘66, Winston FUCKING Churchill. Seriously; my cock is so tiny I could fuck a hamster’s nostril, build an effigy, blame the ball, blame plastic sodding trumpets, blame the climate, they just WEREN’T GOOD ENOUGH, put Gerrard in the hole, put Rooney in the hole, what about the left wing? That never got sorted, blitz mentality, let’s burn our shirts, build an effigy of Capello the size of the BT Tower burn it, then very pointedly not piss on it to put it out, doom, gloom, racism, racism, he’s ITALIAN! We want an English manager, he can’t speak the language, what does he know about football? I don’t understand it, I’m going to throw my shirt in the thames, I could do a better job Tony, not fit to wear the shirt, I’m angry ANGRY, ALGERIA? RUBBISH! ALGERIA? Bigotry, SHOUTING, VEINY FOREHEADED SHOUTING, remorse, you know what the problem is, no Blitz mentality, those boys in Afghaniraq deserve better than this, they don’t even sing the anthem Colin. Christ my cock is tiny, it looks like a subbuteo players arm, but-but-but at the end of the day… at the end of the day… at the end of the day… at the end of the day… at the end of the day…’

At the end of the day, take a breath and give your head a shake. Football is a thing of pure unfettered joy.

It’s an emotional maelstrom and I know things seem bad now, but enjoy the ride, enjoy the spectacle. We might beat Slovenia, we might suddenly start playing like footballing LEVIATHANS. Who knows? I don’t and Calvin the knee-jerk berk cabbie from Swindon certainly doesn’t.

The Difficult Second Post:

As promised in the first entry, boobs and kittens…. New words here soon. Promise. x

Depression and me.

Okay, so as initial posts go. This is a bit of a downer, but bare with me. The next one is going to be about giant quivering boobs and kittens, honest…

I was diagnosed with clinical depression at the age of 13, which if you’re going to acquire a form of mental illness it’s the optimum time, you’re already socially awkward, confused by your own testicles and constantly aware that you sound like a wookie who’s sat down on his bicycle a little too hard. So, you know. Throw in a dollop of existential woe, a complete lack of self esteem and a smattering of daily anxiety attacks and High School will be a doddle, right? Yeah.

I never mentioned it to school mates, for fear of a wedgie so severe my cock would flop out my mouth like a sad little tongue. I survived by making people laugh, and befriending the largest, most intimidating people I could find, but it was difficult keeping it hidden.

I rarely got in on time, waking up with depression is not just difficult. It feels like you’ve been strapped to the bed with cling-film by Geoff Capes, basic movement becomes almost impossible. Something which a parent can easily - one would imagine - confuse with general teenage laziness, as such. It was always seen as an excuse to not go to school.

So, there was no solace at school. There was even less at home. I had what could be described as an ‘interesting’ childhood, by which I mean it was bad. Not Dave ‘torture porn’ Pelzer bad, but in the main unpleasant.

To try and summarise, my parents divorced when I was 12, a fact I never resented. I love them both dearly and wish nothing but happiness for the two of them and understood exactly why they were separating - even at that age.

My upbringing from there on in, was split between my mum and her violent, alcoholic boyfriend and briefly my estranged dad and it ranged from Laissez fair to abusive. Not often physically, more often a lack of emotional support or understanding and a general absence of care.

So the family were no good, they couldn’t understand it. To them, depression was a bad mood. An emotional blip that could be overcome by ‘pulling your socks up’, having an choc-ice or watching that bit in Only Fools… where Del Boy falls through the bar.

So I left them behind. Without any real readiness for the world, and tried to become an adult at the age of 16.

At 18. Whilst working as a Civil Servant, I was prescribed anti-depressants. They left me a husk, I was aware of my surroundings, but I felt unable to interact with them. It was as though I was on a satellite delay to the rest of the world.

My GP assured me this was normal. That “it would get worse before it got better.”

Within a month, I had lost my job.

Within two months, I lost the first girl I ever loved. and after that any real motivation to live. I came off the tablets, thinking I could fight this by sheer will alone, and promptly became a complete recluse.

After six months, I suffered a complete nervous breakdown. So it goes.

I think I’m writing this now, as I’m at a very similar stage to where I was nearly ten years ago.

I am 27 years of age and have spent the last 8 years doing temporary work. Which suited me, and afforded me the opportunity to avoid any real responsibility, whilst being able to mask the nastier symptoms of depression. No one expects much from a ‘Temp’. So, if you turn up late four days out of five smelling of cider with puffy eyes, it’s laughed off as “too much partying” and no one says any more. No one wants to hear any more, you’re just a temp.

I hate temping. I always have. It was just convenient, it does nothing but quash creativity and sour the soul.

So, I’m back where I was. Unemployed, desperate to do something with my life. But lacking the mental fortitude, confidence and emotional support to follow it through. 

Depression to me, is amongst the worst diseases it’s possible to have. It can kill, just as efficiently as any other.

I struggle with it on a daily basis, I feel it’s presence in my mind all the time. It makes even the most basic task a seven mile swim through molasses with a piano strapped to your scrotum.

I’ve contemplated suicide more times than it would be advisable to mention, but I realise that when I think about it, what I want is to wake up with an absence of problems, not an absence of life. So, that helps to keep those thoughts in check.

It’s made me do some bad things to good people, good things for bad people and horrendous things with fat people.

But that is all about to change. I’m determined of that, recently I’ve been living in the wind. The displacement is torture, my mind is permanently restless and rusty with disuse, but thanks to the love and support of some very good friends. I am determined, that I can make the necessary changes to my life to put a leash on the black dog and maybe, just maybe learn how to smile again.

In short: I’m going to live for, not in spite of myself.

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