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My girls are going off to University and it's fucking terrible

  Thu 24th August 2017

The other night I went through my phone, an old Nokia which struggles to hold more than about forty messages, transferring all Trish's messages into the internet's unsafe keeping. My non-sexual favourite text of hers, is the best compliment that anyone's ever paid me, made better because it came from one of the two girls in my life who have physically fancied me: "You write beautifully, but you talk like shit."

It hasn't helped. At some point I'll have to clear again the drain now suffocated with texts from Wendy telling me that she loves me. Which is bollocks.

"You don't love me Wendy. You manage me. I recognise it and I know what you're doing, because I'm doing the same with someone else. I'm useful to you; you're wary of me. That's not love."

I don't even need to send it. She knows all this. She encourages me to continue to financially exploit Trina's feelings for me, in conversations which I suppose she thinks of as some kind of matey honesty between us. In the background, the tacit, glaring shared knowledge that she's keeping me at the same distance from her as I keep Trina away from me. What a depressing trigonometry.

"You are incorrigible and very dear," she texted the other night. It's a strange form of being dear to anyone. I hear little about her day-to-day life but through Kitty. I'm an intermittently amusing sideshow for her, my currency nothing that I want to be of value.


Went round to the girls' the other night. Watched the women's rugby, France v England, with my eldest and Kirsty. Kirsty offered me some soup. Kirsty rarely offers me food when I'm round at hers, once even having asked me if I was going when I'd made and served up a tea for me, her and the girls, timed for when she'd got back from seeing her boyfriend all weekend. The last days are here, aren't they, Kirsty?


This morning, Erica texts. "Yo!!! Do you fancy doing some content writing? Cash in hand?" "Yes, if I''m capable of it?"

Erica showed me into this beautiful Georgian building. She had a radio playing Now That's What I Call Shite in their office, in which she is clearly queen bee, at least in terms of her choice of musical pollutant. What they do is take off-the-shelf Microsoft or Weebly templates and re-sell them to gullible plumbers, cakemakers, and childminders, charging them for a bit of SEO and content saying how marvellous they are.

The boss came in and took me up to an empty room. "So what are you doing now?" "Well, I do a little bit of freelance work, mainly content editing, a little bit of SEO."

Am I fuck. "I think about this girl Wendy all the time. I make up elaborate sexual fantasies about her and wank thinking about her. I sometimes also imagine sex with my other two close female friends. I like spending time with my daughters; I'm going to be sad when they leave Lancaster. I worry about money and my housing situation. I've got a blog. I want to be held and cuddled -- I never am. I drink and take drugs and enjoy both. I like dancing very much, and also cooking, reading, and cricket."

We talked a bit, me worrying, because I can fuck up even a shoe-in. But no: "Well, welcome on board," he said. "I've actually sat round a table with you late at night with Erica at hers." "Oh no..." and I faked embarrassment, "all my secrets are out then." "Well, it was late, and it's OK. It's nice that you know her."

The rates are subcontractual and nothing like they should be, but there you go, I am a full-time content writer from Tuesday, whatever that'll turn out to mean.


I informed the girls and Kirsty first, in a severally-distributed text. "I hope you're sitting down for this momentous news. Your father, or, in one case, your ex-boyfriend, is now a full-time copywriter with a web design company in Lancaster. You may all now go to university and say your Dad is something in IT."

For the first time I can ever remember, Kirsty suffixed her reply with a kiss.

14 comments

Comment from: kono [Visitor]

That my friend… was a crackin’ post… and congrats on the gig… well done all around…

Thu 24th August 2017 @ 02:28
Comment from: [Member]

Thanks —- I am so desperately sad that Wendy seems to be consciously putting a distance between us lately — yet intellectually, and it brings me almost to tears to think about it — I know that it’s for the best. But who the else, who the fuck else am I going to love? I love her, she doesn’t love me. Millenium-old problem, but knowing its history doesn’t help it when it happens to you.

Thu 24th August 2017 @ 02:36
Comment from: Homer [Visitor]

I never thought about that; that having triplets means they all leave home at the same time. It’ll be weird for you. Chin up though, uni terms are risibly short.

I have no idea what SEO is.

Thu 24th August 2017 @ 11:04
Comment from: [Member]

Fortunately, for reasons of different term dates and other practicalities, their departures will be staggered. It’s still going to be a huge wrench. I wonder how Kirsty’s going to feel, too; worse for her. But you’re right – it’s going to be a very special Christmas.

SEO – search engine optimisation. Getting your site listed high on Google etc. Don’t get involved Homer. That way lies only sleep.

I’ve also been stumped by a few words in my current book, Malcolm Lowry’s Under the Volcano. But what interesting words!

bumptious – which I thought I knew, but means irritatingly self-important or arrogant

nutant – drooping, nodding

winze – (in mining) a narrow ventilation shaft between two levels

tabid – affected with tabes, a progressive emaciation or wasting away. Lowry applies it to the weakening music played by a tired band very late at night in a 30s nightclub.

Expect to see these shoe-horned into your favourite blog soon.

Thu 24th August 2017 @ 11:24
Comment from: Jo [Visitor]

Well done to the writer of my favourite blog on his new job!

Thu 24th August 2017 @ 11:59
Comment from: looby [Visitor]

You’re very kind Jo, and nice to see you around again!

Thu 24th August 2017 @ 14:56

What you *really* do sound a hell of a lot more satisfying than SEO but the pay is awful. And it doesn’t come with a dental plan.

The suffixed kiss is because women find employed men desirable. There’s something primal in that.

Mon 28th August 2017 @ 11:58
Comment from: looby [Visitor]

I don’t want to rub this in, but everyone in the UK has a free dental plan.

Got a house now, got a f/t job – who knows what else I might acquire :) (doubt it very much though).

Mon 28th August 2017 @ 14:00
Comment from: [Member]

oh my - i’ve missed a lot over the past year. not quite out from under my blogless rock, but wanted to catch up on life amongst the blogmates!

Tue 5th September 2017 @ 01:35
Comment from: looby [Visitor]

Well, it’s lovely to see you back DF!

Wed 6th September 2017 @ 19:03
Comment from: Homer [Visitor]

Looby, I don’t think we should start an argument about teeth with an American. We will never win.

Thu 7th September 2017 @ 19:10
Comment from: looby [Visitor]

No I agree. They’re obsessed. Tits, teeth, eyebrows, arses – all artificial.

In my next post I will include something about a girl I met tonight who is fit as fuck who is the mum of the nicest bloke I met when I worked for a month at the pub in Bolton-le-Sands. Me, her, her husband, and her son bumped into each other tonight. She is stareaably-at attractive.They are all so lovely. She doesn’t wear any make-up.

Thu 7th September 2017 @ 23:45
Comment from: Homer [Visitor]

You’re one of the few men I would trust to declare that someone doesn’t wear any makeup. Most men have no idea what “no makeup makeup” looks like and only recognise cosmetics when applied at drag queen levels.

Fri 8th September 2017 @ 19:39
Comment from: looby [Visitor]

Thank you. She really doesn’t. Her individual eyelashes are too far apart and too pale for one thing. She’s confident in a simple amd artless way. I bet her husband makes her feel so wanted and physically liked.

Fri 8th September 2017 @ 21:10


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M / 53 / Lancaster ("the Brighton of the North").

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