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Gaynor takes her top off

  Tue 29th September 2015

I was trying some trousers on in the charity shop the other day; they made me look like Max Wall. On pulling back the curtain, I was suprised to see Gaynor pulling her shirt off over her head. We walked up the hill together, past my house. "Well... yes. Yes. I do love him. I do." When you have to empathise it, there's a qualification coming.

"It's just... he's a smoker, and he drinks too much, and it's so difficult..." It's a reference to his lunatic Colombian wife who for five years now has put every spiteful obstacle in their path.


Had an evening with Kitty and Wendy, up to our knees in Prosecco and speed, trying to shunt the din of Wendy's child and the muzak which Kitty thinks improves an evening.

The day before, Wendy sent me a text. "I want you to sidle up to me on the train and offer me amphetamines." I had to pop back tio my house briefly and she kissed me on the lips outside. We (just me and her) arranged to have a trip in the park on Friday, but I'm at Manchester Crown Court that day as a couple of people I know are being prosecuted for chaining themselves to a barrel at a proposed fracking site.


Popped into the yoghurt-knitters' cafe (too remote to attract the violent nostalgia that has afflicted the Cereal Cafe recently) just to pinch their internet. Three people I know turned up and asked to share the table. Mandy, who sat next to me is gorgeous, a kink-haired clever high currency in the circles of left-wing men who fancy her and the derring-do she might provide.

"Yeah, not too bad," she said, starting on house removation, a safe topic in the conversation of the macrame belt of Lancaster. "I just feel I am spending a lot of money every day before I even put my clothes on." "I wouldn't have thought you'd have to pay for it," I said. I spent some of the night re-running an imagined conversation, in which I mouthed the words "I want to fuck you" at the threshold of her lip-reading perception.

Got to my girls' house. "Just been for a pint with Mandy. She's a foxy..." "Don't even think about it. Her boyfriend's younger, taller and funnier than you," said my youngest. "You're just so sad Dad."

Mid-Gogglebox, my eldest said she wanted to be in the police. "Which sort?" I asked. "The sort that batter down the door." This is a bit of a hardening of attitudes from a daughter who a few months ago was asking what grades you'd need to get into Durham to do Archaeology.


I'm stopping on Trina's narrowboat for a few days because the new lodger moved in a week earlier than I'd thought, so I had to rearrange the lodgers a bit and put the Chinese girl into my room, assuming that a Chinese will have least objection to sleeping on a futon. But that means I'm a bit homeless for a few days.

It's moored at Garstang, a lovely place in which to sleep. I've read every word of today's Guardian, even down to knowing that Brentford have sacked their manager and that squash has failed to be included in the Tokyo Olympic games. After a couple of small sherries last night I slipped and dropped my phone in the canal, as well as banging my arse really hard on the metal canal bank liner effort, which is making me walk around like I've got severe constipation.

I got the bus tonight back to internetted Lancaster, partly to pick up a conversation on the dating site. I told her that I'd like to meet in a pub whose name could have been used by a figure in our culture who evokes the sophistication to which the English can attain at their most refined -- Benny Hill -- and so we're meeting on Monday in The Fighting Cocks.

4 comments

Kitty and Wendy in Prosecco sounds like a soft-core porn film. You should go to the park. Your priorities are skewed.

Could she read your lips through that outrageous accent?

I would love to sit and read the paper cover to cover. That, to me, would be bliss. I don’t need anything other than that.

Wed 30th September 2015 @ 11:23
Comment from: looby [Visitor]

No… I can flirt with Wendy any time, but a court date is unmovable (immoveable?)

Next time you’re in the UK we’ll sit soporifically reading newspapers in a quiet Lancashire town.

Thu 1st October 2015 @ 18:41
Comment from: [Member]

“yoghurt-knitters cafe” sounds like one of the circles of hell… i will do many things when desperate for free wifi, but i’d have been out looking for an alternate site if the place had been full of yoghurt knitters….

Fri 2nd October 2015 @ 03:00
Comment from: looby [Visitor]

It’s a great place in many ways and hosts some brilliant events — but as a bar it doesn’t work for me. People in loud voices having these loud conversations of shared doctrinal certainties.

Fri 2nd October 2015 @ 07:30


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


M / 57 / 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
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