Thursday, October 31, 2002

Happy Halloween!

I hate you and I hope you all get fed spiked punch and wake up to find you've been Godnapped by the Jesus Army.

Wednesday, October 30, 2002

This has to be one of the best T-shirt slogans I've seen for ages.

While you're there, check out the other bits and bobs. The slogans are more dyke-specific than I could carry off with the Bearded One on my arm, but they made me chuckle. Oh, and for those of you from Barbie's Undies-- this is Cholister's new enterprise. (Must get around to sorting out my own Cafepress thingamajig.)

Tuesday, October 29, 2002

"Aw Blah Erspanyol?"

Yes. I'm finally biting the bullet and learning Spanish. I've bookedmarked a ton of online courses but this looks like the most promising: Learn Spanish - Spanish for Beginners. I'm also going to get down the library in the morning and borrow a couple of tapes. My unilingual days are nearly at an end.

Monday, October 28, 2002

Creativity ground to a halt? Can't think of a rhyme for "death-knell" that scans, or just the right minor chord for that gawdawful dirge you're trying to churn out? Does your elven princess need a name ompounded out of two other words one of which is a plant and the other a weather condition only you don't know many plants and they don't have weather in your parent's cellar? Then stop being such a dull, unoriginal little prune and download I.M.P., the Ideaspace Mining Program. This stripey wee servitor will have you churning out new doom rock and derivative sword'n'sorcery in no time! Now all you need is a servitor that makes you actually finish shit!

(From here.)
It's "Finally get around to blogging GIRLS ARE PRETTY" day!

This is 'orrible, this site is. This is foul. Mean, painful, unlovely, cruel, and hideously, hideously funny. I'd have linked to it ages ago, but I couldn't decide whether the number of readers it would amuse would be exceeded by the number of people is would piss off.

I'm sure now. Enjoy. - Big Brother is watching: Not in 1984 but in 2002

Looks like I got out just in time...

Sunday, October 27, 2002

Shopping and fucking up.

Went out shopping yesterday. Checked out the English Market, then hooked up with a couple of folks (friends of Lurid The Bearded One's from when he was doing his Ph.d). They were in town for the jazz festival that's currently in progress. Had a couple of beers and a pleasant chat. After they went to catch their bus, we wandered around a bit more, ending up in the Paul Street shopping centre. It was pissing down, and all these dear little kindergoths had gathered just inside to hide from the rain. (Think we've found the local kindergoth nest.) Bought the New Scientist and a Laurel and Hardy video, and then met S. for coffee.

There's a couple of dinky little freak outlets in the shopping centre, one catering for the fishnets-and-pewter side of things, another for the funfur and dayglo type stuff. However, there's a larger shop round the corner with a better selection and, more importantly, flyers. We ajourned there to laugh at evil T-shirt slogans and sniff joss-sticks. The boyf got himself a new shirt, a simple Nepalese job in black linen with teeny-tiny brass buttons; haven't seen one quite like it before.

Then we got chatting to the staff. I mentioned that we were new in town and asked about pubs and clubs. They were very friendly, which is refreshing after London. (The scene in London can be a bit cliquey-- nah. That's not fair. The scene in London can be unbeliveably fucking cliquey, which is why I'd gone into semi-retirement even before we left.) We grabbed a couple of flyers for an event that was schedualed for the same night, and then went to score some new DMs for Lurid.

Later on, we got toffed up in our bestest goon rags and went in search of the event on the flyers. The locals in Cork seem very impressed with me. I think they've decided I'm the Second Coming-- everywhere I go, people scream "Jesus CHRIST!". S'pose they're a bit light on bald chicks with facial piercings in this neck of the woods.

We eventually tracked down the venue, only to discove that the "darkbeat/indie/alternative" event had metamorphosed into a drum'n'bass night. So we sulked for a bit and then buggered off home to play Neverwinter Nights.

I am undeterred, however. The shop folks gave me a couple of other leads, which I will be following up shortly. You can only substitute a high polygon count for socializing for so long.

Thursday, October 24, 2002

I could have done without this, frankly. It's vile and it distresses me. The only way to relieve my feelings is to inflict it on you:

George H. Bush and His Family Paper Dolls in Full Color

(From here.)


Fuck, I'm bored of not having a bloody social life. Much as I like the Bearded One's math-buddies (luvverly people that they are) hanging out with them socially tends to mean that I spend a lot of the time with a rabbit-in-the-headlights face on, waiting for the conversation to leave ninteen-dimensional spheres or what some guy I don't know said to some woman I don't know about something I don't understand anyway and get back to Buffy or Blake's 7. Now that I've got some of the teejus crap sorted out (PPS number in post, list of temp agencies in knapsack, etc etc) I'm going to start heading into the local alternoweird hang-outs.

Can you hear me, Goths of Cork? Stop yer grinnin' and drop yer linen-- I'm comin' for ya.

Trouble with this gig is, it's sort of travelling and sort of being stuck in one place. If you're travelling and you're going to be somewhere for, say, a couple of weeks, you can usually find a few bods who speak your lingo to knock around with. Six months, and you've got to sort out jobs, tax, banks... the claws of grey and dismal Reality sink deep into your flesh, while just beyond your reach fun is being had and BEER is being drunk.

One of the things I've promised myself while I'm here is a new tatt. I want something to remind myself of my stay here. Haven't decided what to get yet, but I'm leaning towards a design of hops.


And another thing: I think I'm in trouble, magickally speaking. I mentioned in a previous post that I'd been neglecting that area of my life of late.

Now, when this has happened in the past, I've been allowed to coast along without any hassle for months at a time. The magickal universe will stroll up and tap me on the shoulder when it wants me.

This time, it's different. I'm not going to be allowed to let things slide. Stuff is happening to me: I have dreams where I've lost something, dreams where I was supposed to do something important and I failed. And I'm getting lost. This is a tiny city compared to London, yet I'm still getting lost after two weeks. I can't seem to follow a map anymore. I just get turned around. The magick wants me back and it wants me back now. I don't know why it's become so bloody important all of a sudden. I think something big is going down soon.

The really annoying thing is, I'll probably never know what.

Still if we're playing hardball now...

You want me back, Magick? You want me to make with the chanting and the candles and the doodles and the running round like a looney and the stinky incense? You want moi to dedicate large chunks of this brief mortal life to mucking about with vous?

Fine. You've got it. But here's the deal: You want my life, you fix my bloody life.

You stop leaving me to rot in cruddy jobs that are so far below my skills level that I get vertigo just thinking about it. You know what I'm good at. Give me a living I can live with.

You stop making me spend a disgustingly large chunk of my paltry income on rent. I want a place that's cheap and not too grim. A fixer-upper will do. I want to buy a huge disused factory for a dollar, like in The Blair Witch II: Book of Shadows. Only without all the, y'know, death and blood and dead owls. And death.

And most importantly: I want to be here for other people. No making me be a bad friend. Got that?

Do we have a deal, Magick?

Tuesday, October 22, 2002

This just in:

Psst! C'm'ere. I need to tell you something. Come close. Closer. Closer still... RAGGGGH!

You're wrong, you morons--WRONG! You want to know why you're wrong? Because you never pay the slightest bit of attention to what's going on around you. I don't mean the big stuff like war, famine, death, and plague. I've given up trying to persuade you slack-jawed gawpers to watch the bloody NEWS with one ounce of the drooling, detail-hungry attention that you lavish unquestioningly on Eastenders. No, I'm talking about the stuff that's going on right under your noses.

I realise that the complex interplay of human relations can be a dauntingly complex thing, never moreso than in the nebulous text-based realms of Cyberspace™. However, I put it to you, dear reader, that if you OCCASIONALLY PAID ATTENTION to what's happening rather that percieving everything through a thick obtenebrating layer of UNINFORMED LAZY ASSUMPTIONS AND UNSUBSTANTIATED RUMOUR you might actually glean some tiny inkling of WHAT THE HELL IS GOING ON.

And no, making Bambi-eyes and saying "but what did happen? Please tell me so that I may understand!" doesn't count. Everyone's sick to death of you doing that. Everyone's very likely sick to death of the whole subject anyway so explaing what happened in minute and tedious detail really doesn't appeal. Either go and find out for yourself or stop shit-stirring. You're not making any friends here, bucko.

Or you could just swallow the sodden compost of lies, half-truths and self-pity that you're being fed by manipulative scumbunnies whose tiny minds (lazy and atrophied from lack of use as they may be) are somehow just that little bit more agile than yours. Go on. Cram it into your mouth, smear it on your lips and cheeks. Mmmm. Nummy compost.

(No, I don't have any particular event/sequence of events/person/people in mind. I wish I did. I wish that your compost-guzzling habits were not as widspread-- nay, universal-- as they seem to be. I'm not talking to you personally. You can take your hand out of your underwear now.)

I hate you all.


Sunday, October 20, 2002


Out bevvying properly last Friday-- the first time since arriving in Ireland. V. was celebrating a successful viva (yay her!). Had a great time, and no pesky nightbus home afterwards. At the party I met some cool peeps as well; it's high time I began constructing a social life. All this stewing indoors really doesn't suit me.

Apparently there's a good Akido class running nearby; myself and the Bearded One are planning to sign up. I've been meaning to take up a martial art for yonks, and now seems like a good time.

Ah, it's all change here. Change is good. I've been getting tired, bogged down. Need to shape up again, get some focus, some direction, some motivation. The trouble with this Renassaince Man/Scientist Mage/Art of Electronics shtick is that you end up spreading yourself too thin. If I've got just a dozen projects on the boil, I'm doing better than usual. Apart from the fact that I really and genuinely love all the things I'm into there's this: I get scared. I get scared that I'm going to miss something, scared that I'll fail at something and have no fallback position, scared that the finished article will be weighed in the balance and found wanting.

The move's over now; I don't have all that crap to worry about (hide behind?) anymore. I really need to shape up and start working seriously again.

So here's what I need to do at the moment...

1) Sort out my bank/tax stuff so I can get a job.

2) Get a job.

3) Sign up for a Teaching English as a Foriegn Language (TEFL) course.

4) Get my magick back on track. I've been a naughty little magicko lately-- haven't been doing my meditations, haven't been doing my chanting, haven't been keeping my dream diary. Slap wristies. You know what? I think I'll buy a drum.

These being accomplished, there are odds-and-ends that need to be completed. Little side projects for other people that got put on hold because of the move or whatever. I'll get to 'em. There's also my bass, which I haven't touched for months, and my painting. I've been being a bit peculiar lately. Staying in too much, slacking on my chores, that sort of thing; these problems must be adressed now before they get out of hand.

I've made a start by shaving my head properly instead of just using the clippers. There are no sockets for my electric shaver, so I treated myself to a long hot shower and a proper razor cut. Nice and smooth.

The bitch is back.

Thursday, October 17, 2002

Help buy Tom Coates a new camera to replace the one that got nicked when his house was burgled.

I'm sure most of the people who'd be interested have already contributed, but I'm bunging the link here anyway just in case.

Monday, October 14, 2002

I trust I'm not alone in finding this sort of thing rather disturbing?

Seriously. It gives me 57 flavours of the creeps. I mean, babies, cute, yes. Babies rock cutedom, stinky nappies notwithstanding. Kids in animal costumes, yes. Many kids like animal costumes and will request or manufacture said costumes as part of creative play, free xpression, ect etc.

But this whole dressing babies up as stuff... it's just yuck.

My writing muscles seem to have gone into cramp. I'm hoping that this is only down to the relatively lengthy period of enforced non-writeyness while the computer was in transit and I was in The Land of Interminable Packing. Those of you who are waiting for emails, letters, diatribes, or slashtastic sitcom treatments: please be patient. I'll get to you eventually.

I'm more homesick than I expected. I miss my old haunts and my mates, especially Marianne. But I'll be popping back to London in a few weeks for Dolly Wilde's visit, so I'll be seeing everyone again soon.

I haven't really been out much, just the odd quiet pint with mates. Still finding my feet, you know how it is. I need to get set up with a temp job but I've found myself in one of those Catch 22 situations: to get a job I need a bank account in Euros, and for that I need proof that I'm living where I say I'm living, and for that I need some sort of official looking document. A bank statement or a payslip would do nicely, but for that I need... you get the picture. The landlord's going to give us a new rent book with both our names on it tomorrow (intead of just Mandy's), so all may yet be well.

I've spent my time mostly trying to unpack and exploring the city. Cork's great. I've never lived in an area with such a high pub density. There's scores of them, mostly offering live music too. Aside from pubs I'm about five minutes walk from two major breweries, a big ol' cinema and an opera house (and a rather yecchy-looking strip club, but you can't have everything). Next time I'll give you a few links to online stuff about the city, so you can feel all envious and resentful. Bwahahahaha.

Did a bit of shopping today; I bought myself a book to serve as a journal-cum-sketch pad. I want to keep a record of my general impressions while I'm living abroad so that I can refer back to them later on. I got a set of Chinese brushes for Christmas, but what with one thing and another I haven't done any painting for months. Now seems like an ideal time to get back into it. I usually paint in acrylics, but they're very bulky and I'm trying to travel light-- plus you can't really use acrylics with Chinese brushes. Can't wait to get started!

One good thing about the move is the way it's made me pare down my projects. One art medium. One musical instrument (bass guitar, if you really neeeed to know). One electronics project (yes, the laser harp). I almost left the electronics stuff behind: I'd got so cheesed off with the subject what with all the bollocks that my moribund degree course put me through. I was just going to shove the breadboard with my prototype circuit into a box bound for storage, and then suddenly I remembered how much fun all that stuff is when you're just doing it for the sake of doing it, rather than for someone to grade. So, the Laser-Driven Pokemon Autopsy Harp rides again! I won't be able to make the housing yet (too bulky to take to Barcelona when we go) but I can tinker with the guts.

Unpacking my leccy stuff at this end, I thought for one ghastly moment that I'd neglected to pack any linking wire. I felt... emasculated.

Friday, October 11, 2002

(Sorry for the paucity of updates, but-- what the hell am I talking about? I'm not even slightly sorry. I've been busy and you're not important. Deal with it. Here's some of what you missed while I was doing grownup things...)

The Flight

It was only a short journey. There were no hitches to speak of apart from my setting off the metal detector at Stanstead Airport. I was duly separated from the rest of the herd and frisked. "What's THIS?" demanded the security woman, minutely examining a bottle of black nail varnish which I'd had in my coat pocket.

"It's my nail varnish," I explained. She unscrewed the lid and peered inside, with a distrustful Hmmmph. The bottle seemed to be a source of some peturbation for her. Admittedly it was the right shape for a bomb, being spherical and black, but the lettering read "Spectacular Nail Varnish" rather than "BOMB" and the whole lacked the traditional fizzing fuse. (My silver mascara was also solemly opened up and inspected. I'm obviously going to have to invest in some non-scary cosmetics for the next time I travel.)

Anyhow, nothing else untoward happened and me and my suspicious toiletries were soon on our way to Cork.

My first ever night-flight rocked. Take-offs are one of my most favourite things in the world in space anyway, and when you add watching the city lights drop away beneath the plane you get an extra dose of super wrongly dark. The clouds were like long smudges of charcoal, the lights were twinkly orange like little embers, and sometimes the angle of the plane and a thick bank of cloud would conspire to create the illusion that there was a city in the sky. All the time I lived within her clutches London never looked pretty to me-- although she has some fine features, the overall look is ugglesome. Now at last I found her lovely, her flaws erased by darkness, distance, and water-vapour.

The flight got in five minutes ahead of time. When I finally dragged my luggage into the Arrivals lounge, Mandy was there waiting for me.

More soon.

Thursday, October 10, 2002

Shut up whining and PRETEND

I meant the kind of tomorrow if we had a 48-hour day. I can do that if I want.

New flat's nice. It's smaller than the old gaff, but we've got nowhere near as much crud lying around so it doesn't matter. Cork's good, I'm good, and I'll do you a proper post when I get a mo.

Tuesday, October 08, 2002


I'm in Cork.

More tomorrow.

Saturday, October 05, 2002


Some of you may remember that I came across a site/message board run by my That Ex. (Everyone's got a That Ex. You know what I mean.) I was disturbed and upset and generally unhappy about the content.

Well, today, completely at random, I located a site related to my That Ex. But... it was all change, y'know? It was freshness, and maturity, and freedom; it was leaving behind the whole horrible mess that was his head when I was around.

It was beautiful. It gave me hope: not for me, because I've put all that behind me. Hope that this person might one day become the man I fell in love with. Not so I can fall in love with him again, but so he can be there for the love of his life.

See, that was the hardest part. I walked on knives for that man, and the only good thing I could take from it was that I'd never do it again. But now... it's like he's becoming secret hero he always wanted to be.

I hope so.


I can see myself reading Ladybird books to a great army of red-haired stepchildren, if I'm not careful.

Friday, October 04, 2002


This is it (well, almost). The removal people are coming tomorrow morning to cart away all the stuff that's going to Cork.
Bloody hell. It's really going to happen, isn't it? I'm really leaving. I'm really going to shuck this skin. Didn't feel real before.

I'm afraid.

Thursday, October 03, 2002

Aces and Jacks.

Back once again. More comedy neurological malfunctioning. Out of sorts and anxious all day today, which is often one of the signs. But I put it down to the move. Then just now I was playing Demon Patience on the computer and picturing what to do next in my head, Eight of Hearts on the Nine which frees up that King so you can move the Queen, etcetera, etcetera. Eight or nine moves ahead, all lined nicely in my head, and then the pattern shattered. Like a wind springing up out of nowhere and blowing away the cards.

This isn't one of those euphoric jobs like last time. I don't know why they're different sometimes. So, sorry kids, it's not November the Fifth yet. And I probably won't stay online this time. Been there, done that. But this is my weblog and I get to be an exhibitionist. If you don't like it, read somthing else.

This is not a good one. I don't like this kind. My past catches up with me. Time breaks, slips, back and forth. And you're there, if only for an instant. Moments rising like blood from the tongue, thin, meaty, distasteful. I laid down some bad things back there, and year by year they seem to grow more sour. Why did I? Am I still there, her, the person who acted like that? Am I here? The immediacy gives the illusion that I could reach out, reach back, and change it. Fix it. That the shards of the cup will rise and become one. That really hurts, that instant where you think you're back and you can make it right, and then you realise you can't and you never will. Moving finger have writ or whatever.

And all the patterns wash away, watered down into nothing. All going down the drain, isn't it?


I am not good. Did I start out like this? Never quite able to make my peace with the damage I do, never quite able to stop doing damage. Corrosive. He says it doesn't matter-- but it might one day. You get a build-up. Maybe it looks worse from where I'm sitting, in a shower of fractured time. Aces and jacks.

They call it making good, when you fix everything back up after a repair or an alteration. To: One single-glazed window, re-glazing and making good. Can you make good? Churn it out like dough, like plaster, scoop it into the hollows and let it dry. Could I ever make enough good, or will the hollows always be there, under the smooth surface? Breeding insects, blooming with rot.

There was blue fire before. Now all the colours are shading into unity, lightless. The face cards accuse with their blankness. This deck never gets shabby, never gets frayed at the edges or grimy. You lay it down new each time. In real life the cards fray. Jack of Diamonds. Ace of Hearts. I heard the red ink was poisonous. Clubs are Wands. Spades are swords. Espada. The ace a death card, like a syringe. Kill or cure.

Who cares for you? You're nothing but a pack of cards.

The Peace Pumpkin Project

Pacifist Jack'o'lanterns. Neat!
"Show me the MONEY!"

Okay, so I've set up a CafePress account. However, their basic price for a T-shirt is $14.99! I'll have a bit of a Google and see if I can find anything less steep. Even worse, they only seem to do a white or grey shirt, which is just not acceptable. I mean, they should warn people before subjecting them to a full page of non-black clothing. I feel all dizzy now. I think I need a lie down.

Wednesday, October 02, 2002

The dance of capitalist supremacy

I've decided not to reinvent myself as a motivational speaker after all. At least not yet. Instead, I shall flog T-shirts. I shall have the I-hate-you thing from my blog description on the front, and "Mordant Carnival Hates You" on the back. Or maybe the fit thread on the front, and "Mordant Carnival Hates You" on the back. Or both.

However, I cannot sort this out till I know where the cheques should be sent. Which is a bugger.

But it must and shall be done.

Tuesday, October 01, 2002 The inestimable Mr. Stewart has got a new website. He draws in some proper comics like Catwoman and stuff; he's a bit good.
Don't give up the day job

I've decided to re-invent myself as a motivational speaker.