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Hayley comes to bed

  Wed 5th June 2019

A job interview at the airport. In the airside bar, which starts serving at 5am. I forgot to take all the documents they requested, but in that co-dependency that employers who only pay the minimum wage have with their employees, they offered it me anyway, after I'd schlepped all the way back home and out to the airport again to bring them proof that I have no taint of immigrant. I've accepted it and I have my training on Friday morning but I might have other options.

Yesterday, an interview at an insurance company. Better money and hours, although it would still colonise two weekends in every month. I was told that I'd have to give examples of how I will exemplify the company's "core values". Number six on that list is "bring all of yourself to work." I wondered if I could say that as an alcoholic I'll be bringing a couple of bottles of red to work, to demonstrate being honest to myself by getting on the sauce every day from about 10ish.

My spirit sank when I entered the black carpeted acre of call centre. A litter of headsets and computers. Company values and tweets from appreciative customers in coloured ink on the walls. I could only think of Vaneigem's adage, "work is a prison of measured time."


To my great surprise and pleasure, Hayley, she of the semi-successful Sunday sofa sex, rings. She'd lost my number but got it from Esther. At Esther's, she is there with a man she acquired the night before. Esther was as tiresome as ever, her constant demands for attention turning to infantile displays of nudity. To my relief, she'd lost the zapper with which one turns on her shouting television, so we were able to enjoy Hayley's demotic sense of humour. Esther took a phone call from the wife of a man who plays in an internationally famous Bristol band. It was one long crackhead's slur.

We all went down the pub, where we managed an hour or so of a deafening rock band. Esther, unable to cope with the attention being on a third party, stomped off home, ignored by the rest of us. All of us apart from her had had an e and some excellent speed, and none of us wanted the pacific mood to be torn up.


Last night Hayley, Acquired Man and me, went out. Hayley looked gorgeous, in a black lacy top and a blue cord miniskirt, black tights and flatties. I mentioned that I have to move out of here in the next few months. Hayley said that it's likely she'll be offered a council flat in the autumn, and suggested we could share it, an illegal but mutually beneficial sub-let. I was astonished and flattered by the suggestion. I think I've made my first real friend here.

Acquired Man wandered off, and Hayley came back to mine. She's asleep in the bed to my right. There were no consequences, despite being wrapped around her, so the semi-successful Sunday sofa sex was clearly a one-off.

When I got up an hour ago there were two messages on my phone from the landlady in the adjoining bedroom. 0012: "It's a school night. M-- has to get up early." 0029: "M-- has to get up at 7 and the walls are very thin. Weekends are for noise."

I am painstakingly quiet all of the time here, to the point where on several occasions they have been surprised to find that I am in. I thought I might have earned a little licence, a fifty-five-year-old man hopefully bringing a sexy miniskirted thirty-year-old woman home, but I'll go and apologise in a minute.


I was walking home the other night, along a section of a path which abuts some of the bleak office blocks with which central Bristol is scarred. A man and a woman were slumped in a doorway, smoking a joint. Some sort of device was playing drum and bass weakly. "You alright?" he said. "Yeah not too bad." "Do you want to join us? It's a party."

7 comments

Comment from: Scarlet [Visitor]

I think the bar job might’ve been more interesting, and there might’ve been tips?
But, yep, bleak either way.
Sx

Thu 6th June 2019 @ 06:53 Reply to this comment
Comment from: [Member]

Morning Scarlet. I’ve accepted the bar job and have got my training tomorrow, but it means getting up at 2.30am and only having one weekend off a month – can’t see me lasting long under that regime.

I’ve got another interview next week though. It’s not difficult to find work here. It would help if I actually wanted to work though.

Thu 6th June 2019 @ 08:28 Reply to this comment

Hello, you old rattlesnake. It’s nice to see/read you. Aren’t you concerned about working in a bar? Distractions all around you.

I don’t want to work, either. Ever. I could think of a million things I’d rather do but they all cost money. The secret to unbroken employment is a proper numbing agent.

Mon 10th June 2019 @ 11:39 Reply to this comment
Comment from: looby [Visitor]

Alcohol, alcohol everywhere, and not a drop to drink!

Since Trina’s mum died, (and she gave up work years ago to look after her) she’s now in a financially secure position with no obligations whatsoever. I usually don’t suffer from envying others but that’s a life I’d like.

Tue 11th June 2019 @ 09:14 Reply to this comment
Comment from: Eryl [Visitor]

If you were financially comfortable, and didn’t need to work, what would you do I wonder? I don’t mean wealthy enough to live in a London mansion, just comfortable enough to be able to afford a small house, pay the bills, eat regularly, and buy books/clothes/the odd trip away?

I’m quite enjoying working at the moment, it’s taking me into a world I otherwise wouldn’t know which is good for someone who fancies herself a writer, but I probably wouldn’t do it if I had the money anyway.

Bristol sounds like a very friendly city…

Tue 11th June 2019 @ 11:01 Reply to this comment
Comment from: Scarlet [Visitor]

I know several people who inherited when they were young i.e early thirties. I don’t know how to describe them, they have no worries, they have done exactly as they pleased, but they are not happy, nor are they showy with their wealth.
It’s very odd.
Sx

Tue 11th June 2019 @ 13:45 Reply to this comment
Comment from: looby [Visitor]

Well, Eryl, I would like to say that I would pursue various cultural pursuits, but I dare say most of the cash would end up the other side of the bar. Although, in one way, what’s wrong with dissolution? Why must we strive? I have no ambition, so I can never work out what I’m working *for*.

Scarlet, you sound like a poisoner for hire. I would say I’ll keep you in mind for future use but there’s nothing coming my way from anyone’s decease.

Tue 11th June 2019 @ 15:43 Reply to this comment


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


M / 55 / 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

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