Monthly Archives: April 2010

belend

I was rather surprised to hear of that teacher being acquitted of attempted murder and GBH yesterday. In summing up The Beak told jurors that the time of the assault, Mr Harvey was in such a state he could not have intended to kill or seriously harm the pupil. Ignoring all the emotive ins and outs of the matter, the straight fact is that a 50-year-old man beat a 14-year-old child over the head with a dead weight fracturing his skull, and walked away a free man.

From the outset I felt an enormous amount of sympathy for the teacher whose goading by the pupil was intended to make him snap for the benefit of mobile film footage, and I feel the right decision has been made regarding this case. Some little cunt succeeded in cynically taunting a vulnerable man to breaking point and got his comeuppance. Good.

It’s all very well to have laws protecting the children but the traffic doesn’t usually flow in the other direction. Bullying, especially the psychological variety shown by the victim of the assault, negates the established adult/child dynamic in whatever capacity it occurs. There are plenty of instances when this sort of behaviour results in a teacher being found lifeless in a darkened garage or wardrobe when the pressure of what is essentially unbridled cruelty takes its toll. This time the teacher broke in the classroom and lashed out.

You can’t legislate against bullying, it’s too subjective and random, you could even argue that it’s a given part of the human condition, but in cases like this, where torment has been specifically orchestrated to push a person over into the abyss, you can at least look away from the letter of the law and allow common sense to prevail via a sense of fucking decency and respect.

Now onto other matters. I had a nice evening with Rosh and Rick in a boozer in Clapham before toddling back East with a bladder awash with London Pride. I was forced to empty it at Bethnal Green in a public loo (outside against a wall) before bussing back to my gaff for baked beans on toast with my bro, IC and Napoleon Dynamite.

This evening a few of us are dining out at a posh eatery in Clerkenwell and nipping off to a bar/club for late drinks. Then it gets a bit tricky. IC and I are flying to Spain at 7am tomorrow morning meaning we’re due at the airport for 5-ish resulting in us having to set off at 4. Going to sleep would be a disaster but a quick snooze is essential. How the fuck we’re going to play it is anyones guess when you factor in the late license.

How about you tune in Tuesday to find out? First the tune (a beauty) chart and a my insistence you have a fucking top bank holiday weekend, pardon my language.

NO. ARTIST SONG TITLE LAST WEEK WEEKS ON
30 The Courteeners Take Over The World NE 1
29 Band Of Skulls Death By Diamonds And Pearls NE 1
28 Dead Weather Die By The Drop NE 1
27 Amy MacDonald Don’t Tell Me That It’s Over 15 9
26 Faithless Not Going Home NE 1
25 AFI Beautiful Thieves 17 9
24 Blur Fool’s Day NE 1
23 We Are Scientists Rules Don’t Stop 13 6
22 Band Of Horses Compliments NE 1
21 Boys Like Girls Love Drunk 28 2
20 Hot Chip I Feel Better 18 3
19 30 Seconds To Mars This Is War 12 7
18 You Me At Six Liquid Confidence 16 4
17 Pendulum Watercolour 24 2
16 Vampire Weekend Giving Up The Gun 14 5
15 Two Door Cinema Club Something Good Can Work 23 2
14 Arctic Monkeys My Propellor 9 7
13 Foals This Orient 19 2
12 Chemists This City 8 5
11 Paramore The Only Exception 10 6
10 The King Blues Headbutt 20 2
9 Vitalic Second Lives 7 4
8 Half Man Half Biscuit Joy Division Oven Gloves 8 3
7 Dommin My Heart, Your Hands 3 8
6 Plan B She Said 5 4
5 The Temper Trap Science Of Fear NE 1
4 Biffy Clyro Bubbles 11 3
3 Lostprophets For He’s A Jolly Good Felon 4 5
2 Liars Scissor 1 6
1 Bullet For My Valentine The Last Fight 2 4

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botshop

This business with Gordon Brown and that bigoted woman from Rochdale in Lancashire, for me it was his finest hour, a triumph. If only the press saw things differently.

It’s very simple really. Gordon was speaking with impunity; at his disposal were a whole range of adjectives and adverbs with which to express his disappointment at his unfortunate meeting with some ill-informed buffoon. He could’ve been derogatory about her weight, age, general appearance stuff, he could’ve employed swear words with which to punctuate his frustration. But he didn’t, he called her a ‘bigoted woman’ which is precisely what she is (Rochdale is 80% ‘local’ incidentally) what he didn’t say was ‘meddlesome fat prol’ or use the ‘c’ word combined with a reference to her age such as ‘old cunt.’

In short he went up in my estimation by some degree but after reading the screaming headlines this morning you could’ve been forgiven for thinking he was reciting the bible backwards as he tried to finger her.

Speaking of this morning, my journey by bus and tube earlier went rather smoothly, by the time I boarded the train at Waterloo I was looking good for getting to work dead on time. But it wasn’t to be. At Vauxhall the train stopped for over 15 minutes before passengers began to alight to seek other platforms in order to reach their respective destinations. None of us had a clue what was happening because the staff on South-East trains didn’t bother to tell us. It was only when I made my way to another train I discovered what the problem was, and why, to a certain extent, there was no announcement.

In short, a passenger on crutches had tried to board the train as the doors were closing after being informed by the guard not to. He’d got his crutches and an arm in the train while the rest of him stood on the platform, when the doors opened to release him the passenger boarded the train. The guard then told the bloke to get off the train and of course he refused, then kicked off. By the time I alighted the bloke was still on the train, screaming, surrounded by British transport police and a bunch of South-East train staff. I accept that South-East trains have to adhere to rules regarding safety but for the sake of the rest of us couldn’t they have just let it lie? On the other hand the prat on crutches should’ve got off the train for the sake of the rest of us trying to get on with our lives. Bastards, the lot of them.

I had a good night with Harry, Rob, Ray, Frank and my bro last night. We met up at The Ship on Wardour Street following a horrific encounter in fucking Top fucking Shop. Purchasing my new suit trousers was a relatively painless exercise despite the shop being hotter than the surface of the sun, but my journey downstairs to the bowels of the earth in order to accrue a pair of leggings for IC was another matter entirely.

For a start there was some sort of sale on, the place was packed like a sausage with millions of perfume-drenched teenagers aggressively rifling through a thousand miles of crammed clothing rails looking as if they’d followed-through at lunchtime. Once I entered this zone I simply couldn’t see any way out and began to fucking panic. At some point I bowled out into the lingerie area, the combination of the hound-like shoppers and range of cheap tat on offer was enough to put George Clooney off his fanny.

My search was going nowhere; I needed help from a member of staff, something I’m loathed to do for no rational reason I can think of. It took me over 5 minutes to find one, I navigated through the throngs of spatially unaware teen-wags who seemed to be on a single minded mission to step out/back the very second I attempted to advance. The fact Gordon Brown is on the front of the newspapers this morning and not a police cordon in front of a smashed up pile of clothing and gel-haired cadavers is a testament to my self control, really.

At last I cornered a member of staff, some barely pubescent giant of a girl with a lazy eye and skin like a butchers apron. When I asked her what I wanted she virtually laughed in my face. ‘Oh vat is sooooooo, lars sayzon,’ it said, ‘nah, we ain’t got nun.’

I don’t recall leaving the shop; the next thing I remember is sat in the pub shivering over my pint as the pain of my visit pounded in my chest.

Nevermore, quoth The Piqued.


peechi

I am alarmed by the nonchalant reaction to the news regarding the death of New Zealand schoolteacher Blair Peach. It was confirmed yesterday he was murdered by a policeman, Officer E, apparently. And that, folks, seems to be that.

For 31 years the police have known who killed Peach and covered it up. Not just a little bit ‘covered it up,’ they actually locked the witness statements away in a vault in 1979 and denied everything until yesterday. In a manner reminiscent of Derek Smalls getting caught with the foiled-clad cucumber, the police sheepishly ‘fessed up before saying no further action was to be taken, and without so much as fucking ‘sorry’ scuttled back to Scotland Yard.

I can’t be arsed to go into detail with regard to the slippery behaviour of various home secretarys’ (I have to say somewhat ironically with regard to Paul Boateng, Peach was killed at an anti-National Front rally, so much for solidarity) and the failed attempts of legitimate parliamentary acts to gain access to the official documents. The truth of the matter speaks louder than any conjecture on my part but it’s worth noting the reason the police finally agreed to admit responsibility for their behaviour 31 years too late is because of the enquiry surrounding the death of Ian Tomlinson last year. You may remember him, the bloke walking with his hands in his pockets during the G20 demonstration before a copper clobbered round the head. Maybe they’re going to pay off the lack of Peach’s prosecution with the prosecution of Tomlinson’s assailant as the whole thing was caught on camera. But I doubt it; as far as the police are concerned they’ve buried the spectre of Peach so it’s onto the next one.

Sorry for the early rant. I’m in excellent cheers as well. Had a killer night with IC following a spot of shopping that saw the better half stomping into a boozer on Old Street with a pair of 14-hole black-as-your-hat Docs. We had a swift one then offed ourselves to Hackney to make our 8.30 appointment with Bistrotheque, which is best described as a media/gay friendly eatery serving fucking top-notch English nosh. Sort of place Graham Norton eats, this is borne out the fact that he was eating there.

IC and I have been going to this establishment for breakfast for a while now, we know the manager and some of the staff which helps grease the wheel when it comes to service and payment, but had yet to try dinner there. We had to order a little conservatively as most of the fish dishes were finished, this wasn’t a problem though, we shared a starter of rocket, bean, croutons and truffle oil and scored a home run with fish and chips, mackerel-salad and potato and fennel gratin. Fucking lovely it was, the place has a friendly, decadent atmosphere and the staff are in no hurry to shove you out in order to replace you with another wave of diners.

We didn’t spank the booze, shared a bottle of Prosecco and rounded the meal off with a pair of boozy espresso, so when we got home I popped out to grab a bottle of Port by means of capping the evening. Lovely.

I’ve another busy evening ahead, meeting some of my pals near the Tottenham Court Road. Between that and the day in this fucking office I have to go to Top Man to get another pair of trousers for my suit after dousing my last pair in expanding foam when pissed silly a few months back.

God knows what inspired this…


to

The bloody gym last night was awful. I’d had a surprisingly successful encounter on Saturday (my yardstick of ‘success’ is staying on the cross trainer for the full 15 mins and not coughing up my hoop as I struggle for breath when I finally get off it, sweaty and red on the brink of soiling myself) but yesterday’s efforts were dire. Doubtless the weekend festivities and lack of sleep following a fucking horrific day in the office were entirely to blame for this malaise, I just couldn’t muster the stamina to get on the first rung of ‘being arsed.’ Three minutes in I figured I’d stop, but I couldn’t bring myself to quit. I mentally reasoned to my prickling face that if I stopped now I’d open a can of worms, that I’d be inspired to essentially not bother in future visits.

Since I began at the gym, incredibly, some 2 months now, I’ve listened to nothing but Slayer on my ipod whilst undertaking the necessaries, save a couple of earlier sessions with some Italian lessons which isn’t really conducive as a soundtrack to exercise. The music provides an energy that can be physically converted; I’ve even noticed that after 8 minutes or so on the cross trainer something approaching ‘this is okay’ arrives in the brain. The intense quality of Slayer, all the delicious time changes combined with rich volume, make the whole gym experience bearable on most occasions.

I try and treat the whole affair with a sort of dedicated casualness. I’ll push myself a bit, after the CT I’ll have a go on the weights for 15 minutes, but I don’t want to start increasing what I’m doing overtly because it’ll put me off next time when I’m trying to attain the same results. I might not be in the mood, and believe me, it’s much easier to not go to the gym than darken its doors when one isn’t remotely up for it, which is pretty much all the time.

But it’s not all bad. I feel quite good after a session, ‘chuffed’ is a suitable word and I’ve noticed that my skinny frame is starting to show signs of having been to the gym, well, a bit anyway. Certainly, my gut is starting to shrink, I’ve had to stick an extra hole in my belt, and I feel better for going than I did when I wasn’t.

I had a very busy evening when I got home, I spurned booze and focussed on a design I’ve been poring over for the past few months. It’s coming on very well now; it was almost destroyed over the weekend. I did manage to watch a Wallander later on, this was the sum total of yesterdays ‘me’ time I guess…

So, this morning I got up, bit tired but clear-headed and took the bus/tube/train/tube combo to the office. On my way in I noticed a twat in his 30’s who kept fiddling with his Nike high tops reading Catcher in Rye as if it were some sort of token to intellectualism, the lady on the bus next to me was reading two bibles and muttering prayers, a man on the train sneezed with such ferocity I jumped, and I can confirm that Christopher, the gum-chewing gay chap behind me on the tube, is going to Portugal with Simon in June.

It’s a fucking lovely day and after this balls at the office I’m meeting up with IC to celebrate some stuff. Lovely.


edd

Ed appeared between the throng of faces a few hundred yards east of Angel station, he was sober yet appeared to having issues negotiating the paving. We walked/stumbled to the boozer a few yards away where IC, my bro and some friends were starting their Friday. I’d not seen Ed for ages, he’d had disrupted journey to the East and it was nice to finally relax in his company, it was still sunny outside and I was happy to face the weekend with my pals and a pint.

After a few the four of us landed in the Turkish eatery by my gaff, we stuffed our heads full of lamb and wine and called it a day. Ed and my bro slept in my gaff and I popped upstairs with IC. By the time I got up Ed was long gone, IC and I went to the gym to work off the wee hangover that remained and after a shower and a shit did some shopping in the bloody cavernous Tesco and popped off to Victoria park for a picnic.

It was a lovely afternoon; we sat in the sunshine in a swirl of blossom drinking Prosecco and eating crab meant with fuck-off big prawns. Around us the good people of the eastend stretched and frolicked in the balmy weather brushing off their respective cares and worries and simply getting down to being human beings. I have to say, I vocally acknowledged my delight at finding myself in such a position on a Saturday afternoon, and at the time of speaking knew that my weekend would be represented by my memory of the occasion. It seems fucking light years from where I’m sat typing this behind shuttered blinds blocking out grey skies. Oh well…

After a while IC and I went to the pub that faces over the park, my bro joined us and we sat outside discussing canines -there were a few dogs hanging about and both IC and my bro have been owners in the past- the odd one receiving attention from the likes of us. It was still clement when we walked back to Hackney Road; we passed a bar that I suggested we visit some time soon, so we went directly in. Lovely place it was, quite opulent in its middle-eastern way, and largely empty too. We stayed for one then toddled on home.

Later in the evening IC and I bussed it to Islington for some Japanese food in a favoured restaurant. The place was rammed but we managed to get a seat at the sushi bar in the back. We ordered piles of sashimi and sushi to get the ball rolling and I took on the deep-fried breaded oysters for old times sake, wonderful they were.

On Sunday I got up at midday feeling strange, IC, my bro and I went off to get some breakfast from the greasy spoon under the arches. My strangeness was cured by a full English with an incredibly hot pepper sauce following a bit of a translation issue, following that my bro and I returned to the flat leaving IC to undertake various weekend chores.

There was one final string to the weekend bow. Paul had invited a bunch of us over to his for another Barbeque, but the weather had turned sour so instead we met at the local. At 4 pm IC, my bro and I popped down the road and we gingerly took on some wine. By 5 our friends had taken over most of one side of the boozer but we didn’t want to overdo it, it’d been quite a big weekend already. By 7 IC and I were home, I set about making some food and she and I saw the evening off with a movie, The Cotton Club specifically.

Next weekend we’re doing something frankly bizarre, catching a plane to Spain Saturday morning and arriving home Sunday evening. I hope you’re already salivating in anticipation… those oysters were fucking delicious.


skwiff

Office talk regarding the snooker. Apparently Steve Davies is doing very well and I just had a flashback to my granny some 20 years ago referring to him as ‘Steve’ in front of my dad as if he was supposed to know which ‘Steve’ she was going on about… he was fucking livid.

You can have that for free.

I’ve a hangover. The work-related bash at The Royal Academy of Music was free running wine courtesy of very generous waiters. The place was packed full of classical music hoi polloi, I was there with my boss and a couple of colleagues feeling like I’d just been plopped onto the surface of the moon. As the wine intensified I became more relaxed, I found myself introducing my pissed-up face to people one sees on the telly, all of them receiving me with a mixture of bemusement and slight annoyance, I didn’t give a bloody shit.

Foolishly we retired to the nearest pub, I didn’t make the decision, I just found myself there with a glass being thrust into my hand and it automatically receiving red. More people from the bash arrived, clients. I should’ve left but I was freely talking to them, unrestricted, unhinged. By the time last orders was called I was sat down having a potentially vomit-inducing whitey, I’m pleased to report it passed leaving beads of sweat on my forehead that I shoved off with my cuff.

I made it to the tube station in a zig zag, I just couldn’t maintain a straight-line which I found hugely irritating. Fuck knows how I navigated my way to the circle line from Baker Street but I do remember arriving on the platform with two trains either side of me and having no clue which was the one I’d require to take me to Liverpool Street. Yell, I decided, so I did. I shouted the question right down the middle of both trains and voice beckoned me to the one on the left. I yelled my gratitude, climbed about and set off.

I woke just as the train was entering my station, bit of luck that, and took the central line to Bethnal Green. The crowds were familiar now, I was among my people and I began to relax, partially comforted in the assurance there would be passengers in much worse states of mind than I. The bus was waiting for me when I swayed into the night after exiting the tube, it was empty and by the grace of the starts and planets, I made it home in one piece, and dropped into bed.

I’m feeling much better now, I need to be. My weekend ahead is vast. It contains an old mate, dinner, a barbeque, gym, park and cycling. And it all starts in the fucking pub, of course.

Gerry’s chart, tune. Enjoy the gifts of the days.

NO. ARTIST SONG TITLE LAST WEEK WEEKS ON
30 Kate Nash Do Wah Doo 21 3
29 Alkaline Trio This Addiction 17 10
28 Boys Like Girls Love Drunk NE 1
27 Goldfrapp Rocket 13 7
26 Enter Shikari Thumper 24 3
25 All Time Low Lost In Stereo 30 2
24 Pendulum Watercolour NE 1
23 Two Door Cinema Club Something Good Can Work NE 1
22 Gorillaz Stylo 15 10
21 Hadouken! Mic Check 19 4
20 The King Blues Headbutt NE 1
19 Foals This Orient NE 1
18 Hot Chip I Feel Better 22 2
17 AFI Beautiful Thieves 9 8
16 You Me At Six Liquid Confidence 18 3
15 Amy MacDonald Don’t Tell Me That It’s Over 7 8
14 Vampire Weekend Giving Up The Gun 14 4
13 We Are Scientists Rules Don’t Stop 10 5
12 30 Seconds To Mars This Is War 6 6
11 Biffy Clyro Bubbles 27 2
10 Paramore The Only Exception 11 5
9 Arctic Monkeys My Propellor 5 6
8 Chemists This City 8 4
7 Vitalic Second Lives 12 3
6 Half Man Half Biscuit Joy Division Oven Gloves 16 2
5 Plan B She Said 26 3
4 Lostprophets For He’s A Jolly Good Felon 4 4
3 Dommin My Heart, Your Hands 2 7
2 Bullet For My Valentine The Last Fight 3 3
1 Liars Scissor 1 5


kleen

I was forced onto public transport this morning, in a suit. Well sort of, I refuse to go the whole hog with regard to suit-type trousers unless at a funeral or wedding. But I’m clamped in a black tie to match my skinny jeans and smart, clean shoes, my shirt is crisp-white and I’m sporting the necessary jacket, black of course. I’ve retained the skull rings and my cuffs are similarly formatted.

This evening I have a work-related incident at The Royal Academy of Music, it’s an annual event saved by the trays of wine and canapés. It’s usually over by 8 but in previous years I’ve been known to retire to a local hostelry with colleagues to round things off, sometimes excessively.

The public journey into work was the easiest I’ve encounter to date. It’s a beautiful day, warm, sunny and the bus, tube, train, tube, all arrived and departed the instant I set foot on the respective pavement or platform. Better still, all were relatively un-crowded so my journey took place in comfort. The views of London that passed by as I made my way South offered golden images of a city only recently drenched in grey steel rain cloaked in freezing cold. The transformation is palpable; you can actually feel a change in the spirit of the city as the sunshine pours forth and something approaching heat tastes the skin. Long may it last.

Yesterday, following a sensationally irresponsible ride home, I parked up Brutta with a 50 mile-wide grin and headed off to the gym in order to knead my muscles. It’s the first time I’ve done three days in a row and I noticed that it was not only easier to work the machines, I was even prepared to push myself a bit further, and I felt much better for it after too. I walked back home via the supermarket to pick up some ingredients for the roasted tomato and goats cheese tart, namely goats cheese and tomato, which I began to prepare the instant I stepped through my front door. It may or may not be worth mentioning that I’d picked up some puff pastry and lunchtime, in hindsight I don’t think I will.

Once the tart was in the oven I showered, shaved and greeted my bro and IC to sample the fruits of my labour and watch a film. The tart was fantastic, I served it with pan-fried spinach, garlic and spring onion and we ate with a glass or two of Cabernet Sauvignon. The film was very watchable too (The Box) and all in all our evening ‘in’ was a success.

Short one today, I’m busy over here… and I’ve just noticed, this could be the first post I’ve ever written in over three years in which I’ve not used bad language. So it’s safe for kids too, right parents?

Enjoy this…