Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Still January 1990 - Still Boy-Mental

January 1990, when I was 14 and 4 months, was quite the fickle month. I think I fancied six boys - PASSIONATELY - during these 4.2 weeks. And Emilio Estevez, although I wasn't 100% sure about that.

The last bit on here is a section I had to fill in in my Judy Blume diary. While I'm not sure who half these boys are on here, I definitely know who that boy is: my first love who had told me I had a moustache and then went and dumped me for another girl. My mum and I always called him Brown Leather Jacket (BLJ). For obvious reasons. He's XXX'ed to protect his innocence...


Favourite Boy – Sam!!!!!!!!!!!

Sam is quite tall, and has black hair cut trendily! He has quite big ears, but not amazingly. He has nice eyes and is really cute ‘n’ cuddly, plus he’s not got a girlfriend! Yum! I like him a lot!


Favourite boy – Peter

Worst boy – Sam = the bastard

I really fancy Peter like mad!


Favourite boy – Martin

I’m in love! I fancy him so much!


Favourite boy – Martin – I love him so much

Favourite musician – Prince – swoon!


Favourite boy – Martin despite the fact that he is going out with someone. God I fancy him. I’m sending him a rose on Valentines day. [he in actual fact sent me a rose and a teddy bear. And a letter promising that we would get married when we were 18 with an actual count-down start of the days.]

February 1990

The boy I would most like to kiss is XXX because I AM MADLY IN LOVE WITH HIM. My idea of dream date would be to go to TO BARBADOS AND SUNBATHE AND MESS AROUND with XXX.

One boy I do not want to kiss is XXXX because HE IS ABOUT 2 INCHES BIG AND YUCKY.

The most romantic thing that ever happened to me was WHEN NEIL ACTUALLY ASKED ME OUT!

The most embarrassing thing that ever happened to me when I was with a boy I liked was: SWEAT PATCHES APPEARED!


Monday, August 22, 2011

The Weirdest Date I Ever Had - March 2004

Written in response to a request for Bad Love Experiences from a US Zine.

I wouldn't necessarily call this a Bad Love Experience because it doesn't really have anything to do with love. And it's not especially bad either. I mean, he didn't boil any of my pets or send emails to my parents telling them what a rocket/disappointment I was in the sack.

That's because the only really genuinely, heartbreakingly bad love experience I have makes me so incensed when I think of it that I want to track the bastard down and lay waste to him with a spoon and I don't want any implication should the scooped out body of a man be found by the canal. In a leotard.

So instead this is what I offer as a Bad (not really that bad) Love (not really love) Experience:

I'd been single a while and went to the Titanic Bar on a particularly tragic hen night - believe me, if your hen-night consists solely of two random people from work who weren't clever enough to invent other plans (one of which was me) and three of your fiancĂ©’s female ex- work colleagues you're in trouble. Titanic has since closed but you'll still occasionally see a sad little cluster of women with condom-strewn net-curtains on their heads and L-plates on their chests throwing themselves against its boarded up doors of a Saturday night desperate for one last Las Ketchup round its dance floor. You get the picture.

Anyway - we'd been for dinner which had been one of those meals where you suddenly wish you were either really, really old or really, really male - anything to set you apart from a group of women who weep with hysterics over a jelly penis and think touching the waiter’s arse is flirting. Oh, the things they had to tell their other halves ... I'd found the only way to get through it was to drink myself stupid so by the time we got to Titanic I was barely able to control my own bladder let alone my decision making.

Which is how I excuse myself for even entertaining this man's attentions. Jumper tucked in, slightly over-styled hair and a management consultant who was really into his job. Really into it. To the point that he started doing his training on me: stand with me, come on, stand up with me. Now, put your arms out and just trust me. That kind of thing. I should've known but, as I say, I was drunk and surrounded by women who thought that knowing the moves to a dance was more important than how you looked doing it. So I hungout with him and happily/moronically gave him my mobile number.

That night I got home around three – alone – only to be pummeled by text messages informing me of where this guy was. Firstly he was still in the club. Then he was leaving the club. Then he was safely home (phew!). Then he was in bed. All unprovoked and ignored but seemingly endless.

Dear GOD, I thought. That's the last time I speak to him.

But it was a long, empty week of nothing to do but watch soaps and envy people with exciting love lives.

So when he caught me off guard mid-deluge of texts by asking me out, of course I said yes.

We met by Embankment Tube station. Me, on foot, full of half a bottle of wine (does anyone notice a drinking theme here?) him driving a rather flash black Range Rover. Which was nice. Hey, I thought, perhaps, in the right light and sat behind the smooth, leather steering wheel, proffering a paper bag containing a chocolate chip cookie, perhaps he wasn't going to be so bad.

He took me on a Ghost Walk of London. A two-mile guided Ghost Walk of London. I was wearing heels. And a top that showed my boobs and didn't offer anything in the way of support. (Like I say, I'd been single for a while). And when we were allowed to stop off at a pub for a quick drink, he told me he was practically t-total. And when he walked in front of me I realised that clearly the only reason he was so good at rugby was because his arse was so bloody big.

And then we had to stop off in another pub after the Ghost Walk for him to go to the loo which, if the length of time was anything to go by, was just about the biggest pooh any man had ever expelled. And I didn't know he was going to be THAT long so I didn't get to order a drink either.

But then he hailed a taxi and we went for dinner in China Town and I got to thinking: ah, now we can be all romantic and everything. Yes, I know - after all that I was still hoping to be swept off my feet. But, hell, I didn't say I was a realist. I said I was desperate.

So we pulled up in China Town outside Wong Keis, which, if you know your Chinese restaurants in London, is one of the busiest and cheapest in the area. It has fluorescent strip lighting.

We sat down and he greeted the waiters like old friends and ordered the set meal for us and tutted all the way through my cigarette - he hated smoking - and commented on how quickly I was drinking the house red wine and then sat back and opened his mouth and the most fascinating/disturbing story came out.

I was on a date with a man who used to be a Jehovah’s Witness. And not just any old Jehovah’s Witness – a Preacher for the Jehovah’s. He'd been married at eighteen to a girl he'd never been alone with until the wedding night and built his way up through the church until at 30 he decided he was unhappy in his marriage, suggested divorce and was ostracised. He then slept in the factory he worked in for a couple of weeks, before moving in with the caretaker and his wife.

That's the fascinating bit.

After I'd listened to that and asked relevant questions and been, suitably, impressed/surprised/strangely attracted he went and completely blew it by announcing he'd been 34 before he had his first blow-job. That I can deal with because, hey, we're not all as lucky as we'd like to be. It was the detail that was so disturbing. I mean, he was like a forensic scientist. I heard it all from the sex in his marriage to the sex he’d experienced since the divorce. Would you understand if I told you that I was actually, by now, repelled.

I mean, really! That jabbering mouth coupled with the obvious pooh and that massive arse - this man wasn't just being inappropriate, he was committing date suicide.

"Yes," he was saying over the Peking duck, carefully sealing the pancake before taking a big, sweaty bite. "I’m still finding it difficult to come to terms with where the clitoris is."

“So," I said, making no attempt to hide my desire to please move off the subject. "Where did you go to school?"

"Hmm? Brighton. Anyway. You know, is it near the front of the back door?"

Yes, he did use the term ‘door’ and no, I didn't tell him. I was too appalled. Apparently he only had one friend who wasn’t a Jehova and he was too shy to ask him. Obviously, I, on the other hand, was offering the optimum level of confidence which isn’t bad seeing as he didn’t really know me and this was a date. And I was looking at him like this …

So. We finished the meal - him drinking water, me drunk on red wine and finding focusing really quite hard. We got a cab back to his car where he slipped an arm around me and I shouted out: mind my clitoris, which he didn't find funny at all. Then he drove me home playing Beethoven's Fifth at full volume and dropped me off with a closed mouth kiss, wagging his finger at me and saying reproachfully "ashtray mouth."

Needless to say I didn't see him again.

But you know what, I can remember all that down to the freckles on his cheeks and just how wide that arse was, but I can't for the life of me remember his name. Doesn’t that make you feel just a tiny bit sorry for him?

Thursday, August 18, 2011

January, 1990 - Aged 14-and-a-half

My diary entries for the first ten days of January in 1990. Be prepared. They're deep... (PS - I have NO idea who any of these boys are. Apart from Emilio, natch)

Favourite song – Wet Wet Wet – Broke Away
Favourite Film – Labyrinth
Favourite Book – Betsy Byers – Computer Nut
Favourite Boy – None!!!!!!!!!!! (Emilio Estevez?)

Favourite boy – Callum !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Favourite boy – Callum !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Favourite film – Grease II
Favourite boy – Eddie !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Eddie’s got long black hair, dark eyes and calls everyone darling. He wears a black hat and gorgeous earings. He also has a nice smile. He wears all black and smells a bit like pubs. He is really nice!

Favourite Boy – Sam!!!!!!!!!!! Fucking Horny!
Sam is quite tall, and has black hair cut trendily! He has quite big ears, but not amazingly. He has nice eyes and is really cute ‘n’ cuddly, plus he’s not got a girlfriend! Yum! I like him a lot!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

David Blaine - Above the Below - September 2003

Written during the stunt magician David Blaine pulled where he suspended himself in a glass box by London's City Hall and starved himself for 44 days. Marvellous.

Why there’s a man in a box hanging over the River Thames

It wasn’t so long ago that nutters were carted off to the local lunatic asylum, pumped full of drugs and encouraged to become expert basket weavers. Obviously the Tories Care in the Community released some back into society resulting in a rise in certain types of offences and an increased number of odd people on buses, but as far as I was concerned I still believed that anyone who was a serious danger to themselves would find themselves a nice bed with their name above it behind a door with a rather secure lock.

But obviously I’m wrong, because, as I write, perhaps the biggest nutter of them all is dangling himself over the River Thames killing himself in the slowest yet most effective way possible.

David Blaine. The Magic Man.

Bless him.

You’ll all know by now that he’s shut himself up in a clear box without food or a good book and aims to stay there for 44 days. He’s got a tube to receive water and a tube to take away his poo and wee (aka Body Waste). And that’s it. He did take some lipbalm in with him, to which all us girls breathed a sigh of relief – imagine going through all that with chapped lips!

These are some of the risks Blaine will face: hypothermia (the box is unheated and he won’t be able to retain as much heat as usual when his body slips into starvation mode), organ damage when his body starts to digest them around the latter stages of malnutrition, brain damage through lack of glucose and kidney failure. Not to mention the sanity issues that 44 days of no food or distraction could cause – you know how shitty you can be if you miss lunch for a start.

No doctors will examine him unless he’s not seen to move for 2 days, by which time the damage incurred could be irreversible.

Ultimately, David Blaine faces death. But he’s not too bothered as he sees death as a ‘beautiful experience’. In fact he thinks that even if he does cark it, it’s worth it ‘for my art’.

‘I don’t want to be understood’, he says leaving me to wonder if that’s the case why in God’s name doesn’t he do it in his own bloody garden. If he really is just doing it for himself then what the hell does it matter who sees him? Hanging alongside one of England’s most famous landmarks isn’t exactly private.

Still, in an attempt to explain why (the master of contradiction), one of Blaine’s claims is that he believes no food or human contact for the duration of this ‘test to human endurance’ will result in the ‘purest state you can be in’. I’m sure that the ten men who died during the 1981 Irish Hunger Strikes would’ve completely agreed with you, David. They’d also’ve agree that it’s definitely a search for personal ‘truths’.

And you know what: those starving communities all over the world, if they could actually read about you, or even see you on a telly, they’d probably be clapping their hands with joy that someone at last understands what a marvellous idea it is not to eat; how truly superfluous nutrition is to attaining your true self.

I also think that branding yourself with a tattoo matching that of a Holocaust survivor is in impeccable taste. How touched the remaining Auschwitz survivors must be by your selfless actions, especially those who lost family not to the Nazis but to the pesky inability to endure starvation.

And don’t be surprised if you generate a little fan club made up of sufferers of anorexia nervosa. At last someone’s recognised that not eating actually is a vocation. Especially since you’ve eschewed the glucose supplement in your water (really? Honestly?). Well done, David.

Unwanted by the Guinness Book of Records – both this little drama and his buried alive trick (which I personally believe was just a unique way of getting to look up New York girls skirts) have been beaten by miles: Dennis Goodwin in 1973 starved himself for 385 days in Wakefield Prison while Bill White spent 141 buried in a box – and demonstrating against nothing but the weakness of the body, and all for what?

All of us are capable of more than we can imagine. Blaine says that and it’s probably one of the only things that’s dribbled from that egocentric, arrogant mouth I do agree with. We will all go through periods of time when we’re stretched beyond comprehension, be it physically or emotionally. And people will say to us: ‘you’re being so strong’ and you’ll say ‘you just get on with it’ and you do. Even though when you look back, your own personal resources will far surpass those you imagined you had.

You’re not that special, David. We just choose to do our testing behind closed doors (Trisha and Kilroy guests excluded).

When this all finishes and if he survives, he’ll be carted off to hospital where he won’t be sectioned into a psychiatric unit to make sure he doesn’t do this to his body ever again while trying to figure out why the hell he’d want to in the first place like they would if any of us displayed such worrying behaviour. Attempt suicide in the UK and, quite rightly, you’ll be placed in twenty-four hour observation and given intensive psychiatric therapy. Not David. He’ll be treated by a posse of highly qualified doctors who’ll try and fix everything he’s broken as best they can before unleashing him back into society. Back off into the sunset, he’ll go, ego bolstered by the success of another insane mission, ready to test his shocked body by yet another ridiculous task. Perhaps he’ll go through gender reassignment. Just for the sake of it. Become Davinia and wear big fake boobs.

As a magician I find it hard to think of anyone better than David Blaine. He is simply amazing.

As a person his self-belief is unnerving. As is his conviction that he’s doing this because he’s ‘above’ human. Which he’s not (and I hope he doesn’t find that out the hard way). No, what we’re clearly dealing with is someone who didn’t get enough attention as a child. Look at him up there: he’s got no privacy, he’s got a rumbling belly and absolutely nothing to do but sit around with a mildly smug look on his face. He’s not changing the world, he’s not making a difference to anyone or anything but he’s getting a whole heap of attention. As I’m writing this I bet a hundred or more people are doing the same. There are gawpers crowded beneath him at this very second if only to demonstrate or perhaps catch him using his poo-tube. For 44 days commuters will be walking to work by him, tourists will be photographing him, reporters will be filming him, women will be falling in love with him, men will be talking about him in the pub, old ladies will ask who he is and remark on his beard.

In the first few days one man took a four iron onto Tower Bridge and fired off golfballs at David’s box (none of the dozen actually hit, his aim was remarkably ‘tragic’ says one of the site technicians) and eggs were luzzed by ‘yobs’. But it doesn’t matter. Because it’s all about David. Look at me! Look at me! I Am David Blaine!

Ah David. I think someone needs a hug.

Treasure Trove!

I just found a whole stack of my old writing, hanging around in the dusty old Mac I've had in the corner and because I'm stupendously lazy, I'm going to post these on here over the next few weeks so that I look REALLY active!

Some of them are really out of date, some are bits from old diaries I typed up during the quieter dating periods of my life. Others are character bios. They're just bits and bobs.

That's all.