Tag Archives: writing

The beginning of something?

So I was in bed and failing to get to sleep. Now there’s nothing unusual about that but an image of a man being raped at gunpoint entered my head (thankfully, that is very unusual). It was only a matter of time until I’d decided why he was in such a predicament.  So I don’t know if I’ll take this any further but here is what I scratched out of that nasty brainworm.

 

I thought the nozzle of a gun pressing against my temple would be a far more frightening experience but its coinciding with my first time being raped has rather stolen its thunder.  By all press reports, this shell of a former Hollywood action hero should’ve been incapable of sodomising me, but then, most reports of his failing health and slide into feckless alcoholism were fabricated by yours truly.  

Tyler Throwback had been the toast of Tinseltown and a hero to socially awkward teenage boys for nearly a decade. His films a shocking mix of high-kicking, car-chasing, soft focus tits and naff one liners; his presence on the marquee guaranteed huge opening weekend box office receipts. That was until he was outed as a pederast with a sideline in bestiality.  Or did I make that up too?  The difference seems academic as he tears the flesh of my arsehole and spits furious nothings into the pooled saliva in my ear.

I know how I got here.  And I don’t really care.  Like many in this town I saw my shot and took it.  I only wish I wasn’t about to die face down in a pillow case I should’ve washed months ago.

 

Worth pursuing?  Perhaps.  We’ll see what happens.

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How Red Ralph learned to stop worrying and love the french fry

I was recently reminded of my old livejournal days. A friend and I used to write nonsence fairytales paragraph each via email. This soon graduated into writing stories on a challenge, ie. positioning friends into historical situations etc. So this is one such story, a part-tim communist, a beautiful man, a member of the Scottish Socialist Party, who hadn’t read The Communist Manifesto but kept it by the bathtub on spoken word cassette; he was my muse, enjoy. (I’m shocked to find this site is still active and this story is still on the greater web.)

 

 

Once upon a time in a far off land of factories and farms and smelly poor fairies and fat rich fairies and red flags and blintzes and…..; there lived a handsome young fairy called Red-Ralph. Red-Ralph wasn’t particularly poor, nor particularly smelly. He wasn’t even particularly rich or fat. In fact, all the other little poor smelly fairies would poke fun at Red-Ralph “You’re not poor” or “You’re not smelly”. So Red-Ralph’s parents, having noticed how troubled their little fairy prince was; sent Red-Ralph to a school for the fat rich children. And, yes that’s right, you guessed it boys and girls “You’re not rich” and “You’re not fat” And so it went on until Red-Ralph was old enough to go to the jobcentre where he would spend his time in the twice weekly restart groups learning all about Microsoft Word and Applications Forms and CV’s and VD. But none of this bothered Red-Ralph as now he was surrounded by people like him, too rich to work in the factory and too poor to be playing polo with the rich fatties.

Red-Ralph was a very generous young fairy who would share everything he owned or help out anyone in trouble whenever necessary. And even better than that, he never hurt a fly. Well, that’s not strictly true, there was the 13-day war when Red-Ralph and his well-meaning, and rather well-armed Red-Friends set fire to the rich peoples homes, stole all their belongings and dragged them for miles behind their own limousines. Well, their houses were too big and everyone else was cold so when the houses burned all the smelly people with typhoid and cholera gathered round the fires and got all lovely and toasty. (Nobody thought about putting the poor cold people in the lovely big houses – something to do with symbols of totalitarianism they said – this storyteller thinks they just wish they had thought of it first). And perhaps you think stealing their belongings was mean but the rich fat folks wouldn’t have noticed, they had far too much already. And you should’ve seen the gross fatties being dragged behind the limos while Red-Ralph and his friends played their trumpets and banged their drums and tried to resist the kind of decadent celebration involving wine and food and young nubile strumpets, (that’s Reddish Newspeak for pretty young girls) they detested the fat rich folk for.

But why would they do these horrible things to the rich fattys? Surely they only had those big houses and flashy cars because they had been good little fairies who went to school and listened to the smelly-breathed teachers and spent many hours in the local jobcentre and Monday restart groups trying to find themselves a good job. Nah, don’t be silly, they got all they had by centuries (donkey years) of exploiting (Reddish Newspeak for the shaft) the poor people who they made work in their factories and farms for little more than a couple of potatoes and the soap suds scraped out of the rich fatty’s bottoms; And as if that wasn’t degrading (Newspeak for icky) enough, the rich fatties would flaunt their flashy cars and their Rock of Gibraltar bellies down the dilapidated streets of the poor folks as often as they could, dodging the yucky buckets of bottom-goop being thrown from upper-floor windows and running people over rather than stopping; the poor people were well-known for the pleasure they received when throwing their buckets of bottom-goop at the rich fattys.

A few months after the 13-day war with the fatty’s – and a few days of poking their bellies with very pointy sticks – everything was back to normal. They poor people went to work then went home to their smelly little tenement buildings (they had outside toilets, eewww) and ate their mashed potatoes whilst picking the hair out of their complimentary bars of soap. But they were much happier now. Why? Well, I’ll tell you. Red-Ralph and his red-friends had created a land where all were equal and all was fair with everyone doing what they could for each other and everyone getting the same amount of potatoes and bum-fluffy soap. A few questions were asked where the bum-fluffy soap came from, but these questions weren’t heard as it was difficult to get into the only remaining mansion where Red-Ralph and his Red-Friends were staying – apparently they didn’t want to have to disturb the family dynamic by moving into one of the tenements and apparently their own tenements had burned down in mysterious insurance related fires. (From then on no poor people ever paid insurance, “I mean really, imagine your insurance company burning down your home” they all grumbled).

Years went by with plenty of potatoes to spare – some of the excess was used to create a mash potato mountain somewhere in the EU, (none of the poor smellies knew where this was as it was hard to buy holidays or even atlas with potatoes and bum-fluffy soap) of which it was promised that all the poor scurvy-ridden kids would get to slide down once it was finished. Even the dreaded typhoid and cholera were almost wiped out with only the people who could die, and those who needed to die from these diseases were obliged to.

All in all it was a happy little land, Red-Ralph was a hero to all and they even celebrated his birthday by renaming the 29th of February as Red-Ralph Tuesday, a joyful day when the poor would get together in Red Square, in front of Red Towers (Red-Ralph’s most un-humble-like home) and make blintzes to be eaten by the great man himself. All they had to do was sacrifice one weeks-worth of bum-fluffy soap to pay for the ingredients. Obviously the poor didn’t mind this sacrifice for the man who had freed them from the evil shackles of the fatty-rich folk and made them all equal.

A month after the first Red-Ralph Tuesday and it was Marx day again. Marx was Red-Ralph’s hero. Marx was a funny looking fairy from Germania who liked to spend a lot of his time in London drinking Pimms and playing Bacarat, but he was also the man who had written the great Red-Fairy Manifesto about how to make the poor be equal and give you whatever you needed, and sometimes vice-versa. Red-Ralph often spoke about Marx, from the safety of his White Meter Heated condo in Red Towers (well it was of a good elevation and provided the appropriate arena for transporting the gospel of Equalology to the masses) of how Marx had inspired him to give the poor the wondrous potato-filled existence they had today. Often the people would question Red-Ralph “Why do we only ever get potatoes as our pay?” “Why do we only get our smelly little tenements with the outdoor toilets?” “Why aren’t they’re more naked children on TV?” This gentleman, Fred the weatherman, was quickly arrested and put in jail equally with equally vile criminals before Red-Ralph answered:

“Don’t you also have the bum-fluffy soap?”

Once again, the great political thinker of his day had shown why he was more equal than them. Satisfied, the crowd dispersed, receiving an extra flake of bum-fluffy soap before being searched on their way out of Red Square and cattle-prodded back to their tenements with the smelly outdoor toilets.

But when the arrived at their tenements, something was amiss. The streets were awash with large-bellied men with bright, curly red hair and great floppy shoes and big red noses handing out little polystyrene boxes with a clowns face and large letter M on them. The poor were hesitant to open these little treasures but the sweet meaty smell was too much to resist and they opened their polystyrene boxes.

And behold, there it was in all its glory, a sesame seed bun encasing two prime beef patty’s with cheese, onion, lettuce and special sauce. “Now this is equality they thought”. “Stuff this up your fluffy soap hole, Red-Ralph”.

And the poor munched on their savoury treats with fervour and were then handed plastic cups containing a dark, syrupy liquid with little chunks of frozen water and some kind of cylindrical drinking apparatus which made everyone’s cheeks (not those ones, well, maybe if you suck hard enough) look so comical. And there were the French Fries, which quite frankly weren’t as nice as the Burger King crunchier King Fry so the fries were tossed aside and left for the less equal of the poor dogs to devour. And thus the celebrations continued into the wee hours with much burping and farting and throwing away of the nasty pickles.

In the morning, well, more like late afternoon after a lot of Imodium was imbibed, the poor trudged through the litter of polystyrene towards Red Towers and demanded the presence or Red-Ralph. Red-Ralph had got hard of hearing in these later years and even felt the occasional pang of guilt for his being more equal, and confused the poor people’s aggression with worship. He threw on his best Prada jacket and marched down the stairs to Red Square where he was welcomed with a hail of blintzes from all angles. Blintzes with nails in them. Blintzes with sharpened edges. Even chemical warfare blintzes (these belonged to the people who couldn’t get their hands on any Imodium). Red-Ralph didn’t stand a chance. He was dragged to his own prison and was left the only prisoner after all the perverts, rapists, thieves, paki-bashers and crime thriller writers were released to once more be equal in society.

Only a few weeks later Blue-Bobby, a greedy little fairy who had the biggest belly you’ll ever see; who had become the incredibly equal leader of the revolution against Red-Ralph, revealed his plan to punish Red-Ralph for hiding the wondrous beef patty from them for so long. And so it was that Red-Ralph was marched to the strange looking new building in Red Square where he was giving a uniform, a brief video on health and safety and was released onto the shop floor to begin his punishment in community service.

“Good afternoon and welcome to MacDonalds Drive-Thru, my names Red-Ralph, may I take your order?”

The end

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Footsteps and the Other Side

I watch my feet and count my steps. I count the tiny creases and trademark holes in my leather brogues. I study the ebb and flow of the swing of black shoelaces. But nothing, it seems, softens the click-thud of the feet behind.

 

I count the cobblestones, wet and slick in the night rain, their blue/black monotony occasionally shattered by the rainbow spectre of an oil stain. I count the half stones and ponder their partners. Are they here on the pathways or were they sent elsewhere to slow traffic, or constructing transmitters somewhere. Maybe they’re on the other side, but surely they’d have been painted first, I’d better not be going through all this to look at more drab, grey cells.

 

They’re growing faint now, their echo stronger than their fall, yet no footstep has ever carried such weight. I can almost feel them on my back, standing on my throat, kicking me in the gut, crushing my nose under their weight.

 

I backtrack, I take a knee and tie my shoelace and I stop at open-fronted shops to buy chewing gum, cigarettes, bottled water, anything, just so long as I can survey the street and gain a clue as to who poses a threat.

 

I know I’m almost out, the streets are becoming more colourful as I head south? east? west? I have no idea which direction I’m heading in, I just hope the old man was right “Follow the colour, the music, the chaos.” He can’t have been entirely wrong, the shop fronts continue to brighten and the nightclub music spills more and more out onto the streets and with each new sound and colour the weight of boot on my back grows.

 

 

 

 

I received my orders from Hypothalamus HQ early this morning. Some punk processing clerk been hearing this talk of the end of the rainbow. Happening a lot these days, dissatisfied workaday cells think they can travel across and live the easy life. Thirteen cells done killed themselves trying already this month. And those that do make it just get sent right back. Damn hippies on the other side ain’t  got not time for no ‘factory rats’. That’s what they call them, ‘factory rats’. Just cos the got rich parents they think they can talk down to the rest of us. Well I don’t mind saying it, they wouldn’t last two minutes over here, having to work for a living? No chance, trust fund cells would be crying for their Pons in no time. That’s if they could cry, with my boot on their throat.

 

Objective: Return rogue lamellae to Parietal Lobe for reformatting. Due to host’s chemical imbalance all care must be taken not to damage rogue lamellae during repatriation.

 

Little punk thinks he can shake me with the old shoelace and shop tricks. I ain’t been doing this job 28 years to fall for that crap. If I’m honest, I could have the little shit right now but he knows I’m following him and watching him trying to play it cool is just too fuckin’ funny. The pleasure I’d get from squeezing his puny little throat with these old boots of mine but boss says I have to play it cool, orders coming down we to be gentle and respectful now, part of some twelve step program to improve living standard of population. Apparently the host done got himself some chemical dependency and the Oblongata dept threatened to go on strike ‘til their systems got upgraded. They might be lab rats but they work hard in there, and at high stakes, I sure wouldn’t thank you for the job. But is the dumb fuck host grateful? Is he fuck, just keeps jabbing that shit into the veins and hoping we’ll sort it out. 

 

Here we go again, he’s stopped at another shop. What is it this time? Cigarettes. Give me a break. I mingle in with a young crowd outside a nightclub but my lamellae friend decides to take a rest on a bench across the street. I stay hidden amongst the clubbers, all to drunk or high to really notice my intrusion, and watch my little friend. He knows he’s being followed, wether this is pure knowledge or paranoia I couldn’t care less I’m going to have some fun with his ass anyway. I give this ugly old hooker some smack cash to go hit him up for a date and it is worth the spend. He turns paler than my spotty ass and heads off again, still in the wrong direction, thinking this will phase me when it just makes my job easier – gives Hypo HQ time to shut down the pathways.

 

Transmissions from HQ says the old man has been successfully retired. We can’t be sure how many cells he corrupted but he won’t be getting to any more. He came from the other side but was a troublemaker, they don’t like troublemakers, the trust fund cells, so they sent him over here. Thalamus were glad of the extra hands and we were sure the old man had been thoroughly reformatted but something must have stuck cos soon enough he was spreading tales of the other side and all that hippy bullshit.

 

 

 

 

As I set off again I know I haven’t lost him. That creeping, that dread, that weight on my throat all tell me he’s still on my tale. I though I saw him amongst a some clubbers but some old skank got in my face and started propositioning me. When I finally bought her peace with £20 the old leathery face was gone. He actually reminded me of the old man, the thing greying hairline highlighting years of struggle on the forehead. A frosty sparkle in dead old eyes that pierce steel.

 

I had just been promoted when he was when the old man was placed on my team. We were channeling data from various nodes to the frontal lobe. The conveyor belts never stopped but the routine nature of the job meant we had plenty of time to get to know each other. The old man had little to say in the beginning, in fact, I often felt he wanted to speak but was holding back. It was only after time I started to realise why.

 

During one of his monthly appraisals he told me of his background on the other side. He was a colour picker. When the host dreamt or imagined anything it was the old man’s job to chose which colour a car, a guitar or a star would appear to be. The complexities of this baffled me and I sent him back to work on the line. How could he ‘choose’ a colour? Wasn’t everything grey? I wrote him off as a kook but my sympathies got the better of me and I didn’t return him for reformatting.

 

As the months wore on he would tell me more of the jobs available on the other side. They all involved this element of choice. The hierarchy seem familiar in the sense of a team under a line manager but the managers only responsibility lay in telling the team when to work, not how. There was a team for everything and mostly for things I never knew existed. A whole department for making dinner was split into the meat decision team and veg decision team. One cell would choose a meat whilst another decided how to cook it and another would choose a sauce. One cell would choose a veg whilst another weighed the pros and cons of boil vs stir fry but then followed it’s gut anyway.

 

The more he spoke the more I imagined this wonderful world of colour and music although I still didn’t entirely understand what those things were. As he spoke I could often see other cells watching us with interest. Passing each other in the corridors some cells would glare at me disapprovingly whilst others delivered friendly winks and nods. I really had no idea how to handle this world recently opened up to me but I knew I didn’t have to. That decision would be made for me, like all others, when the time comes.

 

I can’t remember the last time I was on the streets so late. It’s a horrible sight, trails of broken bottles and vomit only parting for a zig-zag of intoxicated footsteps – did we create our hosts’s chemical dependency or did he create ours? I put my head down and walk, past the clubs, the takeaways, the neural trash chutes. I can see ahead the city pathways giving way to wasteland.

 

 

 

 

How much the old man told our lamallae friend we can’t be sure, HQ got a little rough with him and between his age and previous reformatting attempts his recollection was as useful  as the tread on that old hooker I paid off to hassle our friend. 

 

The trash and waste in this end of town is beyond ridiculous and I can barely keep pace with my mark. I’m slowed further by the fat that I’m the only sober man on the street and have to act drunk so as not to be made. I fear that surrounded by wasted cells is rather contagious. Have I done gone and gotten drunk by proxy? This little lamallae fuck is gonna pay for this.

 

I’ve fallen again. The slick puddles of kebab grease vomit giving little grip. My whole left side covered in the unholiest of puke I pick myself up and swear violent retribution for bringing me here. The mark keeps heading further into the ghetto, he’s heading for the wasteland, seems he took a right turn somewhere. I don’t even remember where this could’ve happened, I can hardly keep my balance under the torrent of cheap alcohol running down the streets. We’d all heard rumours of the damage done to this end of town but it’s worse than suspected. So long since cops came here we took it for granted but there’s no way I’m gonna catch him now, I’ve fallen so much and swallowed so much foul, acrid intoxicant that I doubt I’ll see HQ again. And me, three weeks from retirement as well.

 

I drag myself onwards, I can’t see him now but I follow my gut, as poisoned as it may be it’s never let me down. Three blocks on and I take a left, holding onto a lamppost for leverage round the corner. I see him up ahead, he’s made it onto the wasteland. There’s no way I’m following him there. A few cops have gone into the wasteland but none have made it back with their sanity. After the twelve step reformatting by the host the Hippocampus team experienced various malfunctions but none more damaging than the data deletion breakdown. Now unable to erase any previous experience, all personal demons, nightmares and guilt have been sent to the edge of town, far from valuable processing centres downtown. This is where my mark is heading. Ain’t no way I’m following him in there, even if I could, I wouldn’t. I sit down, head swimming, stomach churning. It’s not getting any better, the fumes are stronger than ever out here, I lie down, overdose on the cards. And me, three weeks from retirement as well.

 

 

 

I enter the wasteland, cold and damp in the air and shrill noises in the ears. The torrents of filth seemed to abate as I cleared the city pathways. Behind in the distance I see an old man lie down by a lamppost, his head barely clearing the filth as he slumps further, poor bastard. I take one more look back just in time to see him slump below the water line. This will be the last time I open my eyes for some time. Having worked in data processing I am well aware what comes to the wasteland. I focus on the multi-coloured light on the other side, two or three kilometres maybe, I can’t be sure. I close my eyes and walk.

 

The footing is surprisingly sound, no doubt a result of recent defragging to save on what is already limited storage space. My skin tingles with charged air and I swear I feel real life hands clawing at my plasma, they’re cold and hard and pulse a frenetic beat. The clawing worsens, as does the sound, a white noise from which I can’t disengage. I fear my direction being changed by the clawing but must trust myself. I am to make it through I must be true to myself, the old man said.

 

The going is slow and I have no idea how long I’ve been out here. There is no physical barrier holding me back, just a sense of belonging, a charged particle struggling to leave it’s opposite mate. As each step gets heavier the clawing increases. It feels like they have consumed me, their cold charged hands now more me than me. I fear I will be mistaken for data and refused access to the other side. The old man warned of this, the cerebellum playing tricks with my program in a last ditch effort to bring me back. I stay true. Take another step. And another. And the cold charged hands wither off me and darkness falls all around me.

 

As I take another step I realise there is nothing below me. I’m walking on a vacuum and weightless, but not floating, I’m in complete control of my cell. A small flicker ahead, it’s like the telescreens on the line flickering to life at shift’s start. The brilliant white flicker grows and quickly deafens me with white noise before displaying the most staggering sight I could imagine. Is this what the old man called ‘colour’? It’s like the glimmer of the oil stains on the cobblestones but an infinite magnitude more brilliant. What begins as in front of me starts to warp around me, surrounding me in it’s colour like fluid. I’m in a giant sphere of dazzling, confusing, light. The old man often spoke of beauty and I didn’t understand his meaning until now. The sphere starts to shrink, I don’t fear for the warmth, beauty and comfort grows as I bathe in the light, revel in it and eventually, am consumed by it.

 

 

 

 

“Good morning Lamallae-248, and welcome to the ‘Right Side”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Hide and seek

I wrote something, a most unusual occurrence. Enjoy, or don’t, or critique it, or don’t.

 

The shouts from the street tell me everyone else has been found, I win, I guess. Little comfort there. After all, I am hiding in the large cupboard come hallway connecting the kitchen to that small room by the front door. To this day I can’t tell you why I hide inside when the hide ‘n seek is happening outside. I hear my friends asking where I am but there’s no way I can claim the victory, they’ll surely see me stepping out the front door. I stay in my den sandwiched between an occasional folding table and dad’s stinking football bag. I am eight years old.

I am walking home, alone. I should be going back to school for afternoon classes, at least, that’s what my gran would’ve expected after I ate the lunch she made me. Instead, I walk up the hill, through the tunnel, past the shop. I could go back to school and face the bully but I still don’t know that those who make the most noise about fighting are usually the least willing to do any. I’ll sneak home by the back door. Sure, my next door neighbour spends most of her afternoons in the dining room and kitchen at the rear of the house but the large hedge lining the garden path will give me more cover than the wide expanse of grass at the front of the house. He said he’d get me after school. He said he’d kll me. I don’t know why he didn’t just get me at lunchtime, or why he didn’t do it there and then. It did seem odd that he’d threaten to beat me up whilst walking away from me. I will understand one day. Having skilfully sneaked by the nosey neighbour I am once again in the hallway between kitchen and front door, it’s where the phone is. I call the school. I tell them about the threats. They take care of it and I hide in the hallway between an occasional table and a smelly football bag. I am twelve years old.

More shouting, more hiding. Every weekend, they drink, they go outside, they shout. Mum didn’t drink until she met him, she’s making up for lost time now. I don’t know what I did but my presence seems to be of great importance as a reposte and as a means of lowering the volume. But this never seems to last long. I have the sanctity of my room but this seems somehow empty. Space oftenhas that effect. So much room, so much possibility. I don’t like that. I get into the cupboard, it’s smaller than the old hallway cupboard but somehow more comforting. Only room for me and a box of Trivial Pursuits question cards. I read the cards, one by one, all the while hoping someone is lookng for me. The shouting has stopped and I hear heavy boots come up the stairs but they go past my room. About 25 question cards later and lighter footsteps come up the stairs, I quietly hope that I’m about to be found but these footsteps also pass by my room. I am fifteen years old.

He’s at the end of the bar, my high school tormenter. I never did learn why I was singled out, the winner of some arsehole lottery I guess, yippee. I pretend I don’t see him, I pretend I don’t care. I stay at the other end of the bar, it’s a busy Saturday night and there’s enough customers that I shouldn’t have to venture too far in his direction. But I feel him staring at me. I still don’t care, my sweaty palms say otherwise. I drop a full pint of Stella on the bar floor. Of course the glass smashes and I have a bastard of a clean-up job to do. Panic over I return to serving the good people of Cumbernauld. Fuck! He’s moved up to my end of the bar. I say I must’ve cut my finger on the glass and slink away to the staff room. As luck would have it there is actually some plasters in the First Aid kit, an occurrence so unusual as to be worthy of a street partyand bunting. I put the plaster on an unharmed piece of flesh, I’ve become quiet accustomed to a consistency of lying. I smoke a cigarette. I hide. As luck would have it there are occassional tables in this staffroom, tables we use when catering for large parties. I am nineteen years old.

Why did I do it? He was my friend and I certainly didn’t like her, well, not in that way. Not in any way, in fact, I downright loathed her. That’s it, the all powerful combination of loathing and ‘because I can’. When did I start fucking out of spite? In all fairness, the game did lose some of it’s charm when the women became so willing, I’m sure it’s a Falkirk thing but two or three compliments and it’s ‘hows your father’ in the car park before last orders. I guess I added the spite and loathing just for kicks. But this time I’ve really fucked up. Has she told him? She was looking rather poe-faced at the party the following night. I’ll never know. I turn my phone off on his stag night and don’t speak to anyone for a week in advance of it. My friends stag night and I’m at home with my parents pretending it’s ‘not tonight, mum’. I have no excuse for not going and I can’t tell the truth, I can’t ever tell the truth. Instead I stay home and eat an awkward family dinner from an occasional folding table. I am twenty three years old.

I’m on a rented IKEA sofa in a rented IKEA flat drinking what may as well be rented IKEA vodka for all the quality of the bastard. She isn’t here. She was here three nights ago but when I came home two nights ago she was gone. I did get a note, she’s at her parents, she’ll call me. I was at work, then at a club. I didn’t text to say where I was, I could have, but I didn’t. I buy draught coke and top it up with the cheap rum in my pocket. I am in no way dressed to be in here but I know the bouncer. I float around the club trying not to harass the patrons but I am way beyond that kind of restraint and beyond the point where any of this cocaine and Cava crowd will speak to me. I go through what I think is the door to the toilet. It’s the back passageway of the club. There is a fire exit and a store room containing assorted electrical equipment and a large guitar amp. I take the guitar amp and leave via the fire exit. I realise that a one hundred watt amp is heavy and leave it in a bus stop a quarter mile form the club. I continue the walk home telling the heavens that they ‘won’t get me, I know they’re watching but they won’t get me’. The sun is rising as I reach the flat. I enter to find the note, she’s at her parent’s, she’ll call me. Two days pass I’m here with my IKEA vodka when the phone rings, I let it ring out and then the mobile rings and I let that ring out also. Lather, rinse and repeat three times then I switch off the mobile and unplug the landline. I hide, on the sofa in plain sight. We didn’t get round to buying an occassional table. I am twenty eight years old.

I am checkng Facebook, I am checking Twitter, nothing. I wonder through Reddit and Stumbleupon and watch several hours of sitcoms I’ve seen before. I man up, I open the word processor and I type. I am thirty two years old.

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