Friday, 13 March 2009

Friday 13 March 2009

Friday the 13th for the second month running, approach with caution. Today is Voorhees Day and with it can only possibly come problems. The stakes are also upped by it being Comic Relief and Red Nose Day, an event that was captured by The Office for what it is.

Yet again today I walk to work like a sleepy child with my legs aching and me really requiring/wanting a mummy to whinge and moan to about this fact. Unsurprisingly when I get to the station there is something wrong/up with the trains as the 7.03 and 7.07 combine to make one super overcrowded train. Congratulations once more National Express.

Despite this National Express still has the fucking gall and nerve to have an inspector check our tickets on the train. Why have barriers in place that already perform this job just as well with robotic accuracy? I guess it keeps a chimp in work.

The act always makes me feel like a fair dodger, a criminal. I always expect to be questioned and accused, maybe even charged for having a faint date on my gold (GOLD) £4500 Travelcard (or as I call it “the evil necessary evil”), a £4500 Travelcard printed onto card because National Express are too cheap (in one form/capacity) to issue plastic or sturdier tickets or even get with technology and make some form of Oyster annual Travelcard hybrid. Instead of being on this train this morning I wish I were buying Michael Jackson tickets elsewhere.

When I am eventually on the tube to Baker Street (then St Johns Wood) I find myself fearful of the hoodie kid sat next to me and my imagination desires of/for him wanting to steal my prized iPhone. This makes the ride unnecessarily uncomfortable for the pair of us. Really though, why (else) would you wear a hoodie up on a tube? What part of your head is it protecting and what from? He’s a gangsta, innit. Luckily he gets off at Great Portland Street, which probably means he’s some undercover kid on work experience at the BBC.

The saying of the day is “I smell tuna” spoken in the style of “I see dead people in Sixth Sense.” I think at one stage tuna could actually be smelled but as I repeat the terms for the 100th time it correctly gets on people’s nerves, as is the intention.

In the mood I email my friend in Holland Park to see if she is free this evening and she responds telling me she has provisional plans but nothing concrete so she will let me know where things stand later on in the day.

The day sails out relatively smoothly. For the majority my mind is elsewhere in the hope and anticipation of meeting up with my friend this evening. And in early afternoon she confirms with me that she will be free tonight after her plans, as half expected, fall through.

An easy afternoon ends with something of a bump when the fall out of the bank bollocking is suggested, setting up a potential hell week for the coming week. This however is not top of my mind at this time and when I leave almost running out the door on the dot this evening it is with almost shock as I think the IT Guy is wanting me to stay and help him with his accounts and the tuna girl is struggling with the word of an email to go to the administrators.

My journey down to Bond Street from St Johns Wood and across the Central Line to Holland Park is swift, almost thirty minutes ahead of time. As I climb out of Holland Park train station it is walking side-by-side with a beautiful girl with shape and ethnic tan and I wish it were her I was getting to see this evening.

As I stop by the cash machine at first it rejects my Natwest card. I hope this is due to the near scratched off pin chip and when I use another card it seems this is the case. While at the machine a coin comes flying at me hitting my feet. I look over my shoulder and it is a strange looking guy in the distance that has kicked it towards me and he apologises, waving his hand at me. Why did this happen? Was it intentional?

Eventually I find myself at my friend’s place. It is always noticeable as to when Holland Park ends and Latimer Road begins. When I arrive she has another friend over who is apparently the cousin of a punk singer whose band I once saw and really liked. The guy soon leaves and the apparently the singer is an arsehole.

She asks me if I have ever had a back, sack and crack – cheeky cow. I end up on my back being fucked. It is in a weird position we have never tried before but it is very successful. At one point we go too far and it hurts but soon we calm down. My friend was unable to rustle up a burkha so we compromise at a hijab. It was a weird thing to do and one to not really live up to the fantasy but at least if fulfils my urge to do something bad/naughty on Red Nose Day. When done we finish off with chat and a massage (me to her). These are my true skills.

Soon comes time for her to go off and meet up with her friend as planned. She is already late as I leave and as I do I notice coins dropped on her doormat. She tells me that this is for luck, an old tradition to ensure money keeps coming in. That’s a relief; I thought I had a literal hole in my pocket as opposed to the figurative one. These things run their course.

The ride back along the Central Line to Liverpool Street always feels like a lengthy one, I struggle now to believe that I used to pretty much do this (give or take a stop) on a daily basis. Tonight is somewhat interrupted by two giggling blonde girls swigging from a plastic bottle of Coke. Is that coke alone girls?

Finally I stagger back onto a train to Colchester now racing the clock in full knowledge that the Rough Trade Records documentary is on BBC4 tonight. Apparently the cousin of the wife of a boss is related to Geoff Travis these days.

It is always a maudlin atmosphere to be on an evening train to Colchester on a Friday night. The limbo state between rush hour and the puke party late trains home is a weird sedate one. Too often these are people returning home for the weekend and as a result they have too much luggage and take up twice the space.

I stomp through the carriages of the 8.30 train to Norwich nervously looking for a seat that never arrives and to the detriment of my health I eventually find I have walked the entire breath and length of the train without finding a seat not possessing one of those stupid fucking reserved tags that half the time are never used meaning good law abiding citizens such as myself possessing a £4500 train ticket are too afraid to attempt to “steal” one of these places.

Without realising it I wind up standing in the luggage area of a quiet carriage. By now I have been listening to my iPod VERY loudly out of anger not realising it isn’t supposed to be on at any volume. What am I rebelling against? What have you got?

I switch to my iPhone to watch one of the final episodes of Adam And Joe Go Tokyo. Its painful watching an iPhone standing up on a train, the balance is never right. And this is coupled by two twit dickheads next to me by the luggage swigging from cans of Strongbow. The middle classed privileged twats also like to speak in high tones somewhat hindering my enjoyment and hearing of Adam and Joe.

It is with some fucking neck that the ticket inspector dares to check my ticket as we near Colchester. Out of decency/courtesy, surely if you have had to endure the inconvenience of not getting a seat surely you are entitled to be spared the humiliation of being inspected.

The annoying trip finally ends and soon I find myself racing to get home to not miss too much of the Rough Trade documentary. As I reach my parents’ complex, where my car is, I bump into dad walking the dog. It is the dog that sees me first and as ever is strangely overjoyed to see me. As I bend down to see him he jumps up and almost headbutts me.

Dad and I have a short chat. Seems he hasn’t got anywhere with clawing back any money from his overbooking with Ryanair. Before long though I am soon hurtling home for the Rough Trade documentary.

Luckily it is only about the first ten minutes that I miss and it sails out fairly interesting and exciting. It is always interesting to watch record label documentaries and to compare them with my own experiences with Gringo Records. The documentary is like a star-less version of the Stiff Records one BBC4 did a few years ago, which I would argue was a better label than Rough Trade (obviously having worked for them there is an obvious bias on my part). As ever I find I learn something new about The Smiths and that is really cool but towards the end of the documentary I have to concede to zoning out and the step into music management is a bridge too dull.

The falling out of the head people of the label is a moment of the documentary that resonates too closely for comfort. The same thing happened with Stiff Records and in a lesser capacity happened to myself at Gringo Records also. I wonder what it is/was however that those guys had that made them successful and not us with Gringo Records. Firstly I think it was a better era to be producing music. The marketplace was larger and the industry was less rigged. Secondly it was probably a lot to do with them being positioned/situated in London, that’s the only place you need to be known and where to network. Finally, I think their bands were better. Not all of them but the ones that paid the way were in an obvious higher league. Annoyingly though where the people in the documentary proclaimed not to have much business acumen and knowledge is absolutely ridiculous as they had sold their product like a motherfucker and the financial holes were the problems of the accountants that probably wouldn’t have happened if they had Excel.

When I awaken Comic Relief and Red Nose Day is still in full flow. This year people are giving in record numbers; probably on credit cards that have been the cause of the credit crunch in the first place and will eventually come back to haunt these wonderful giving when they emerge from their alcoholic haze come morning. What I see on the performance side is pretty atrocious but the pathos stuff definitely works even if the visuals are disgusting.

I do not stay awake/around for the Ricky Gervais skit. After that episode of The Office it just appears to go against what he stands for the now appear on what he mocked, to becoming part of the establishment. It’s similar to the time he did the Lady Di tribute concert, how could he after singing those songs about her? Its too Jekyl and Hyde, much like his scary fans. Sleep.

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