Sunday, May 05, 2002

Nothing I do has any meaning. I am incapable of affecting the world except in in the smallest possible ways. My life is a futile cycle of work, consume and die.

I came to these conclusions (for the hundred millionth time), following the Mayday demonstrations last Wednesday. I wasn't in the main ruck, having attched myself to a sort of mini-demo that some freinds had organized. It involved walking around London with placards, some blank, some bearing a huge photograph of a fluffy Siamese kitten with an expression of culpable stupidity and crossed eyes. The kitten was to invest the affair with a sense of general fluffiness, and the blank placards were to hand out to passersby; we had big felt-tips to write whatever slogan the passerby wanted on the placard. Sort of a free-speech thing. Some of the slogans we ended up with included anything from "Bush is a corporate w***** (and so's Blair)", "How about a nice cup of tea?", "We all come from stars", and commentary on global capitalism couched in choice Portuguese obscenities. After a while the smog of dope fumes started to get to us and some of the placards were amended to include pirates, ninjas, and AYBABTU. (Yes, I know it's deader than crimplene but WTF else can you write on an A2 blow-up of a fluffy kitten?)

The demo went rather well. We stopped for tea and biscuits in Chinatown, then wandered round some more. It felt... good. People's responses were varied, but mostly on the positive side of bewildered, and the blank placards provided a neat answer to that age-old question: "what are you here for?"

"Hmm. Not sure. What would you like?"

We went and hung round Trafalgar Square until it looked like the police were coming to turf everyone out.

The high spot came when we got stuck in Frith street, trying to get to Soho square. A police cordon had blocked the way and these two drunken eejits were trying to start a ruck, with much shouting and pushing of riot-shields. The sparse crowd were getting a bit sullen and fed-up generally. I feared ruckage.

Suddenly a young man appeared at one of the windows opposite. He turned up his stereo full blast, and the strains of the Beatles' "All You Need Is Love" blared out across the street.

He got a standing ovation. (And you can all bog off and stop laughing. Now. It was cool. You had to be there, but it was muy cool.)

Yep, the actual demo was a groovy thing indeed. Good party atmos, good company, nice bikkies, and the Minor Deity of Frith Street with his magic stereo.

So what's with the grim, you might ask? (Assuming you'd been scripted by Joss Wheedon.)

Well, about the time we were leaving Frith Street, we met Mark. I had never met Mark before, and it's my sincere hope that I never meet Mark again. For Mark, my children, is the Anti-Frith-Street-Stereo-Bloke.

Mark is the Uber-F*ckbake.

The least offensive thing he said all night was his suggestion that Chinatown's staple diet is dog. From there is was all downhill, really. The yecchily heavy flirtation. The hand that I couldn't unglue from my thigh. The attempts to impress me with financial profligacy, an aquaintance with one of the bouncers from Stringfellows, and his having seen Jordan's tits. Quotes from Nostradamus. The fact that he didn't actually know what the word 'capitalism' meant, and seemed to blame the French for it. The assertion that he had a degree in psychology and it was a scientific fact that twelve-year-old girls who flirt with men "know what they're getting into". The fact that this no-brain-having piece of human detritus refused to let me have a conversation with anyone else, and wouldn't leave me alone all night.

(Mark. Mark the courier from Surrey: if you're reading this, you are everything that I despise. You're an ignorant little nonce and I hope you plough your scooter into a motorway support. If anyone out there knows Mark the Racist Nonce Courier, please- do the world a favour, and kill him. Tell him you can get high from sucking a scooter exhaust pipe. Anything. Just get rid of him.)

So that, coupled with my usual post demo comedown, is the reason for my huge and catastrophic ennui. Power and wealth is concentrated in the hands of the Marks of this world; all I have is a cardboard placard, a photo of a kitten, and my deep and abiding loathing of you lot.

I may be down, but rest assured: I will return. And I still hate you.

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