Gay Nazi Sex Vicar in Schoolgirl Knickers Vice Disco Lawnmower Shock!
« Preston 1 Cambridge 1Smoke »

Impair, manque

  Sat 8th March 2014

I settled down in the pub and finished Turgenev's Smoke, a passionate tale of an idealised love and the triumph of respectability and "realism", and then bumped into Wilma and her new bloke. Wilma has been off the booze for almost a year now. "I was hoping she'd become a bit less negative when she gave up drink, but she's still the same," someone said recently.

Then, an hour or so of gilding the lily, and it was off to Manchester, where a DJ I like was playing.

It was the coldest nightclub I have ever been in. It was like dancing in a freezer. The club is downstairs but there's an outside area with the communicating doors permanently wide open. I danced in my jacket and scarf, wondering how the girls in their thin dresses were coping. But the music was excellent and it was a friendly, careless crowd. And I got chatted up!

She was thirtyish, small, and had a mousey face, but it'd have been worth taking her home just to warm up. I wasn't particularly bothered about "full intercourse" but she might have had a spare hot water bottle.

She started dancing closely to me before initiating a conversation which unfortunately soon became a little stilted, about where we live and what the nightlife is like in Lancaster. She asked if I fancied a drink and invited me to sit down with them. I declined the offer, and that was it. But to be approached like that is flattering, and I'm definitely wearing that combo again--short brown suede jacket, pale brown and orange shirt with a pattern of little squares on it, dark brown jeans and plain black leather shoes--to see whether it can repeat its girl magnet trick.

The music wound down at 4.00, and my train back wasn't until 6.30, but by dint of some prior research, I had found somewhere I could go. It was a 24-hour casino, and was classier and more dressy than I was expecting. There was waitress service for everything, wherever you were. It was still fairly busy and people were wandering around the tables and sitting in the bar with a look of unconcern. The regulars and the croupiers all know each other, and there was a camerarderie of commiseration and congratulations.

A casino in central Manchester at 5am this morning

I'd never been to a casino before last night and being so close to a new subculture at perhaps one of its extremes--since casual gamblers wouldn't still be there at dawn--was anthropologically interesting. I sat watching the roulette and saw a man win six hundred pounds, and then lose it all within the hour; it's to see a licensed addiction running wild before your eyes. Another man told me he'd lost three hundred pounds that evening. "I leave my cards at home now. I'm trying to wean myself off it to be honest." I let my first train leave and stayed on for another couple of hours.

I had a coffee in Starbucks on the station, and marvelled at the incredible tedium of some people's jobs.


Comment from: PendleWitch [Visitor]

Lucky you - can’t remember the last time I was chatted up *sighs enviously*

Sun 9th March 2014 @ 18:28

Well, negative and sober beats the hell out of negative and sloppy drunk. You’ll live longer and your friends can enjoy your negativity for an extended period of time.

The look on that guy’s face seems to say he is badly in need of mutual reassurance.

Man, I love casinos. Just love em’. I like both participating in, and observing, the carnage.

I know you have a low tolerance for tedium but, take it from me, you can get used to pretty much anything if you have to.

Sun 9th March 2014 @ 19:39
Comment from: Suzy Southwold [Visitor]

I’m fascinated by the second black and white photo. Who on earth has to be told to cuddle their partner? Is that a Really Late handbook by any chance?

Sun 9th March 2014 @ 21:00
Comment from: [Member]

I think it’s just Lancaster. My very attractive, well-educated, head-turningly gorgeous friend Linda, (who’s Irish) said she finds men up here are so frosty.

It’s not my negativity I was talking about, it’s Wilma’s. But yes, sobriety is best for her. Even though the expected transformation hasn’t quite happened. And she’s a good friend, her heart’s in the right place. I, on the other hand, can’t wait to get back drinking.

My first time in a casino but it definitely won’t be my last. I really enjoyed myself. It didn’t feel like killing time at all.

I couldn’t ever accept having to get used to tedium. I’d plot my escape, or just walk away, with nothing to go to. Concentrates the mind no end!

Gosh, you’re a perceptive woman. Yes, it is. We’re having a clear out at work, and I filched it out from the rubbish when I was in the office on my own. I’ll publish some more illustrations from it. They’re unintentionally amusing.

Sun 9th March 2014 @ 21:37
Comment from: "Chris" [Visitor]

pair, gagne - Connie would be happy :D

Mon 10th March 2014 @ 15:26
Comment from: [Member]

It’s weird terminology. I bet Connie would like that, the symmetry. But the French terms don’t make sense in terms of congratulation or regret over how you’ve won or not. Manque in normal speech means to miss (as you know) – but in roulette it means to miss getting over 16. It’s as absurd and deliberately complicated as cricket. I could get into this.

Mon 10th March 2014 @ 18:36
Comment from: furtheron [Visitor]

Tedium - welcome to my world…

Wed 12th March 2014 @ 16:53

I admire your will power from abstaining from the gambling.

Or just skint?

Like Pendlewitch said, lucky you. The only time I get chatted up now is by young teachers who want a day off.

Sat 15th March 2014 @ 05:31
Comment from: [Member]

Fabulous! Not that you don’t get chatted up, I mean that you’re back in the navel-gazing fold.

Gambling is the one vice that passes me by. And seeing how much you need for an average night out (well, you know, an average night out till 8am) in Manchester, very glad it doesn’t do much for me.

Great to see you back TSB – will fiddle with the controls to reinstate you now.

Sat 15th March 2014 @ 10:50
Comment from: Jonathan [Visitor]

Looby- sorry I missed the email you sent me as part of your prior research… I’ve only just got back online in the house after moving and only just picked it up! Although admittedly I’m not brilliant at checking my emails even when I have no excuse (as you know).

But by the looks of things you got some very workable advice from my fellow Mancunians (if I can still call myself that having decamped over the border)- advice certainly a lot better than anything I could have given you, I would probably have been pointing you towards the Chinese-run snooker club on Whitworth Street that used to be a regular post-club haunt… but that certainly doesn’t have waitress service (of for that matter, functioning central heating, and I get the impression you needed thawing out).

Sat 15th March 2014 @ 17:21
Comment from: looby [Visitor]

Not to worry J, I thought you might be a bit busy.

You don’t mean you’ve moved to… not… surely… please tell no… Cheshire?

Sat 15th March 2014 @ 19:06

Form is loading...

looby, n.; pl. loobies. A lout; an awkward, stupid, clownish person

M / 60 / Bristol, "the most beautiful, interesting and distinguished city in England" -- John Betjeman [1961, source eludes me].

"Looby is a left-wing intellectual who is obsessed with a) women's clothes and b) tits." -- Joy of Bex.

WLTM literate woman, 40-65. Must have nice tits, a PhD, and an mdma factory in the shed, although the first on its own will do in the short term.

There are plenty of bastards who drink moderately. Of course, I don't consider them to be people. They are not our comrades.
Sergei Korovin, quoted in Pavel Krusanov, The Blue Book of the Alcoholic

I am here to change my life. I am here to force myself to change my life.
Chinese man I met during Freshers Week at Lancaster University, 2008

The more democratised art becomes, the more we recognise in it our own mediocrity.
James Meek

Tell me, why is it that even when we are enjoying music, for instance, or a beautiful evening, or a conversation in agreeable company, it all seems no more than a hint of some infinite felicity existing apart somewhere, rather than actual happiness – such, I mean, as we ourselves can really possess?
Turgenev, Fathers and Sons

I hate the iPod; I hate the idea that music is such a personal thing that you can just stick some earplugs in your ears and have an experience with music. Music is a social phenomenon.
Jeremy Wagner

La vie poetique has its pleasures, and readings--ideally a long way from home--are one of them. I can pretend to be George Szirtes.
George Szirtes

Using words well is a social virtue. Use 'fortuitous' once more to mean 'fortunate' and you move an English word another step towards the dustbin. If your mistake took hold, no-one who valued clarity would be able to use the word again.
John Whale

One good thing about being a Marxist is that you don't have to pretend to like work.
Terry Eagleton, What Is A Novel?, Lancaster University, 1 Feb 2010

The working man is a fucking loser.
Mick, The Golden Lion, Lancaster, 21 Mar 2011

The Comfort of Strangers

23.1.16: Big clearout of the defunct and dormant and dull
16.1.19: Further pruning

If your comment box looks like this, I'm afraid I sometimes can't be bothered with all that palarver just to leave a comment.

63 mago
Another Angry Voice
the asshat lounge
Clutter From The Gutter
Eryl Shields Ink
Exile on Pain Street
Fat Man On A Keyboard
gairnet provides: press of blll defunct, but retained for its quality
George Szirtes ditto
Infomaniac [NSFW]
The Joy of Bex
Laudator Temporis Acti
Leeds's Singing Organ-Grinder
The Most Difficult Thing Ever
Strange Flowers
Trailer Park Refugee
Wonky Words

"Just sit still and listen" - woman to teenage girl at Elliott Carter weekend, London 2006

Bristol New Music
Desiring Progress Collection of links only
The Rambler
Resonance FM
Sequenza 21
Sound and Music
Talking Musicology defunct, but retained

  XML Feeds

Run your own website!

©2024 by looby. Don't steal anything or you'll have a 9st arts graduate to deal with.

Contact | Help | Blog skin by Asevo | Website builder