Bent as a Five Pound Coin

Here’s something I’ve never said:
‘Honey, I’m home! And I’ve had such a great day editing web content that as soon as I’ve slipped into something more comfortable, I’m going to log into WordPress and tap out some words.’

No, instead, what has happened is what I’d hoped would happen. I’ve been drawn back towards music after a year of relative indifference. I’m sitting on a bunch of songs that I’m really excited about recording. I bet you can’t wait to hear them. Oh, I also watched The Wire a lot.

We found a flat! It’s a tastefully decorated, wooden-floored little number in between Finchley Road and West Hampstead. The only thing I’m not thrilled about is that we don’t move in until mid November. This is the living room:

living room

The flat is opposite Hampstead cricket club. This raises the possibility of me playing some cricket next summer. I haven’t played for about 16 years, which means that every cell in my body has replaced itself twice since I last stepped to the crease. Fuck, I think my hair might even have been blond the last time I played cricket. Maybe Hampstead will have a blind team I can join. They can send me to the boundary, and if the ball rolls in my direction I’ll do my best not to trip up on it and break my neck. It’s nice to think I’ll be making a contribution.

There’s a kind of wholesome pleasure from the simple activity of throwing and catching a ball. It nourishes your subconscious. Think about how complicated catching a ball is. You’d have a lot of trouble programming a robot to do it.

Lemme see, what else? Er… I was recently handed a five pound note so dilapidated that it looked as if it had just emerged from a sickly mammal’s digestive system. It made me wonder why five pound coins aren’t in circulation. Life would be so much better. I feel strongly that this is an important issue worthy of a co-ordinated campaign, stopping only at systematic violence and intimidation. Who’s with me?

One of things I’ve sworn not to do is read online newspapers when I’m slacking off at work. It makes me ratty, negative and tense. Instead, I’ve turned to the Gutenberg project, which links to dozens of literary classics that are out of copyright. When I feel like kicking back at work for twenty minutes or so, instead of troubling the servers of I read a chapter or two of a classic. This week: The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, by Mark Twain. I read this when I was a kid, thinking it was for kids. Wrong! What strikes me about it as an adult is the universality of the humour.

I suppose saying Mark Twain was a pretty funny kind of guy is like commenting on the defecatory habits of forest-dwelling doglike carnivorans, but I have to say it: I freakin’ love Mark Twain.

He must be one of the most quoted people who have ever lived, but here’s one you might not have heard. He said, “I came in with Halley’s Comet in 1835. It is coming again next year [1910] and I expect to go out with it. It will be the greatest disappointment of my life if I don’t go out with Halley’s Comet.

Guess what happened?


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