Category Archives: grolsch

program

As part of my ongoing campaign to cut back on my intake of alcohol, I acted on a brainwave yesterday lunchtime, the idea derives from a time a couple of years back when my bro was living at my flat.

He and I used to play on the PS2, evenings and entire weekends would pass with both of us sat there mesmerised by whatever horrorshow game I’d picked up. Being brothers and similar in thought and deed the fact that I was never actually involved in the physical control of the game has baffled many. We had an agreement, he operated the controls, I offered ‘advice’. Essentially, he pointed the controls in the exact same direction I would have if they were in my hands, and when he didn’t, I’d let him know. This allowed me more time to roll joints and pour wines, and when he got too pissed to physically play, I have to say his stamina was remarkable, we’d watch a film.

The only game I used to play alone was Tomb Raider, which is precisely why I found myself in a shop yesterday buying the latest Lara Croft instalment. Despite being a grown man approaching his fucking 40’s, I’m aware that Miss Croft could really help me out here. Unlike my bro, I find it impossible to play games pissed, even a small amount of booze will ignite my temper like a match to a rizla, the non-standard PS2 controls I use are a testament to this.

I’ve made two major decisions. Apart from the odd Sunday afternoon session, should I feel inclined, I’m only allowed to play Tomb Raider on evenings when I’m not drinking. This gives me something to look forward to and something to absorb my mind in a world separated from wine. Which brings me to my second major decision. I’m aware that wine is the single biggest contributor to my condition, I fucking love the stuff over and above any other tipple by a bloody miles. So, unless I’m in appropriate company, the bottles will remain unopened.

Last night was a test. I met my bro in Clapham at the usual at 6. He was on an early shift so I got out the office at 5 on the dot, biked home, changed, tube, wham, wallop etc., we discussed the governments drive to curb drinking, I’m only pleased that I’d made the decision to cut back on my drinking before the cunts at Whitehall made their absurd claims about the UK’s drinking populace, Princess Diana’s mangled face, Glastonbury and Big Brother wankers, over a few jars if Grolsch and a parting whisky and ginger.

I got home feeling quite pissed, despite not drinking as much as usual, and made some supper. After a disappointing Apprentice and Big Brother I decided to have a session of music, I’d just bought the Biffy Clyro and new Marilyn Manson albums and wanted to give them a shot.

Without doubt this is when I’m at my most vulnerable, one of life’s greatest pleasures outside of fucking and killing is to listen to angry rock music at high volume pissed, particularly as a result of wine as it makes one more introspective and engages one emotionally with the music in a way nothing else can. The music went on and instinctively I walked into the kitchen and grabbed a bottle off the shelf. I was just about to open it…

…I didn’t. Instead I had a small can of Carlsberg. It sufficed, I’m getting used to this, slowly. It’s fucking hard though.

Before I hit the hay I played this, you’ll thank me. Turn it up

[Youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5ku23nZkukE]

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black night

It’s rather spiffing when one is looking forward to an evening and it ends up as a classic. After a rather pithy day in the office I cycled home full of good spirits, I’d had a jolly chat with Myfwt, Jim had e-mailed me to tell me he was already waiting at the flat and after a quick change at home we were just about to get into the tube when I got a call from Ray. I’d not from him in a while but as soon as his number appeared it was obvious that we were both heading in the same direction, he too had succumbed to the whole goth thing in the 80’s and had figured out that I was going. We arranged to meet at The (new) Intrepid Fox in a couple of hours

I’d already made plans to meet pals at The Two Brewers on Monmouth street so at precisely 6.10 I met Gee and Rick, who’d just arrived, and bumped into Swinsehead as I went to the bar. It was a glorious warm evening, if a little muggy, but stood on the street with a pint watching the passing throngs going about their business I could actually feel my self unwinding. A friend of a friend passed by and I grabbed him to say thanks for the book he’d kindly signed and given to me, he’s currently enjoying an acting role in a nearby theatre but to say anymore would be indiscreet. Nice bloke.

We had a couple of pints at The Brewers and made our way to The Fox, needless to say it was rammed with just the crowd I’d expected, largely middle aged men, a few gothy chicks and all still maintaining something of the you-wouldn’t-understand-if-you-don’t-know about them; wall to wall black, piercings tattoos, it felt like coming home. Essentially, it felt 20 years ago. Beautiful.

We were joined by one of Gee’s mates, Justin, he runs a nightclub in Surrey (I can assure you it’s not as shit as it sounds) and is good pals with members of Hawkwind, I liked him instantly. By this time the pints were going down nicely and the crowd had begun to thin to catch the support act, slowly the black faded and the usual ‘metal’ punters began to diffuse the absence of colour.

Ray arrived with his boss who immediately bumped into some of his friends, who, coincidentally, Justin knew. Even more coincidental, I popped on a Cardiacs youtube link last week and one of them was the guitarist from the band. Everyone was introduced to everyone else; there were now 9 of us.

We arrived at the Astoria just as The Fields of The Nephilim took the stage, Ray got me a beer and I began yelling at the exact same moment Myfwt texted to wish me a good evening and to not get shouty, as is my want. The band began sedately, a little to quiet for my ravaged ears before kicking off into their main set. It was fucking hot in there, sweat was pouring off the crowd, it was a sold out gig and the place was rammed solid much to the detriment of getting a good view. Our group disbanded into individuals and couples vying for a good spot, I found a super platform on the stairs to the bogs until Jim found me and ushered me upstairs to a prime location on the balcony. We bumped into a gild who’d flown alone from Dan Diego just to see the band, it was her first trip to London, she was flying back the following day. I only mention this to give some idea of the impact the band has had on some of its fans. Largely the crowd were congenial and polite most probably due to age, despite that the atmosphere was intense. The closing number was the best, a swirling, gliding drone that had a hypnotic quality; it was one of the best numbers I’ve seen performed by any band anywhere. By this time the volume was immense, my trousers were vibrating to the bass and I could feel the chorus in my chest.

After the gig we convened on the street and wandered over to The George for a closing pint. It was still very muggy but a relief to be out of the venue which by the end was like the Persian Gulf. The 9 of us stood about chatting, I was texted by a friend who wanted to know the band personification of ‘shoegazing’. This resulted in a ludicrous and hilarious 5-minute conversation of grown men shouting over each other. We settled on Ride.

When it was time to go Jim and I were half cut, as were my friends. I left Gee grinning at me from the entrance to the pub clutching yet another full pint. Both Gee and Jim are married with kids so when they do get a chance to get out, neither wastes it. We got off the tube at Tooting, Jim and I were ravenous but it being Thursday and after midnight the decent fast food outlets were shut so we had to opt for snacks from fucking Tesco. We didn’t drink anymore when we got back, a cup of tea and a spliff, which wiped Jim out completely, and he crashed out fully clothed in my bed.

Jim and I have always slept together since we were 17, neither of us is remotely known to doff the brown hat I hasten to add, it’s just the way it is. I woke up to the dulcet tones of Jim having a good old spit up in the bathroom, when he came back to bed he smelt exactly like aromatic pipe tobacco. His heart was racing and he was feeling shitter than dung, he put this down to over indulgence, I put it squarely at the feet of eating 3 cheap Cornish Pasties, two bags of Revels and most of a large bag of cheese balls prior to sleeping. He was just about okay when he set off and I ran a fucking massive bath before sitting down to write this crap.

Myfwt is popping over in a minute, it’s another warm bright day and I’m feeling just fine.

Today’s youtube clip is in memory of Rod Poole of Swervedriver who was murdered in LA last week. Bye dude


wide awake

I’m bloody shattered. I’m not sure if its down to my viewing of the fucking Blair Witch Project last week but I have been waking up at precisely 3.45 for every night this week save Sunday, which is the night I had to witness a nightmare, and was the only night that waking up at 3.45 would’ve been helpful.

The thing is that as soon as I’m awake I’m aware in that semi-conscious fog between the state of being asleep and awake (the part that the surrealists get wood about) that I am, and the mind starts racing until I’m actually awake, the whole blinking-in-the-dark-feeling-frankly-pissed-off awake.

My attempts to return to sleep consist of various tried and tested sleeping positions. Covering oneself but leaving one limb out of the duvet until it’s stone cold is oddly effective when the cold limb is brought home, similarly, lying on ones side with ones bare back exposed and hugging a wadge of duvet prior to returning to the classic side position can also do the trick. Since my disc slipped I’ve been unable to sleep on my front and feel that my sleeping has subsequently suffered, thanks back, yeah.

Anyway, none of these methods worked so I remained awake for about 2 christing hours as the sun came up, dozed off until 7.15, woke up and then fell asleep again, I was subsequently late on my refusing to get out of my pit.

After my rather splendid cycle home yesterday I dumped the bike, changed and set out. It was a glorious evening, perfect actually. I arrived at the boozer on Clapham Common a minute after my brother and we chatted to one of our pals who works behind the bar before heading off to sit by the window and watch the world go by as we sipped on Grolsch. My brother was shattered but after a pint, a chat with his missus that coincided with a call from Myfwt he got a second wind and we were off. We spent the evening discussing that Rock programme on BBC, Alan Partridge and Glastonbury, which is coming sooner than I’d realised. After 4 pints I was feeling unusually pissed, possibly due to a light lunch yet my bro blackmailed me into a whisky and ginger, which I wolfed down. After much giggling we went our separate ways and I arrived home seconds away from doing tinkle in my pants.

I’m not hangover today but I am knackered due to the lack of sleep, to add insult to injury I’ve a horrifically busy day, which is why today’s offing is somewhat short. I’ve two interviews, an important meeting and a stressed boss to contend with… it’s a lovely day though.

In the meantime, these young men cropped up in conversation last night. They look rather peculiar but make lovely noises. Turn it up.

Thanks