Saturday, November 24, 2018

Sinking into a sea of empties

I struggle through the door with a speaker and microphone stand, Dill is already at the bar. I hear him ask for "Two pints of Stella and two double vodka and limes."
"Shit Dill. I can't drink that before going on stage."
"No mate this is for me. What do you want?"
We've driven up country for a gig, I'm on guitar and Dill is playing bass. It's a country pub nothing special but £90 is £90. and I'll sing and play to whoever wants to listen or pay me. I finish setting up and sound checking.
Dill says "I'm going outside for a smoke."
"No Dill NO. Not before we play."
"It's OK I'll make it a light one, just enough to settle myself down. Come one, come and talk with me."
Outside in the beer garden we find a table in the far corner. It's a warm pleasant summer evening and there's still light in the sky. Dill gets out his tin and takes out a paper. He rummages about in his tobacco pulling and stretching it before laying a strip down, then he fetches out a  small grubby zip lock plastic bag and brown stained fingers pull out of it his weed which he liberally sprinkles over the tobacco. I take a breath and grit my teeth I've seen him do this many times and this is not a light one. He knocks back one of his Vodka limes in one and immediately takes a mouthful of the Stella to chase it down, before going back to rolling his joint. Finally after shaping and moulding he's happy with it and sits back and lights up. He takes a long slow deep pull on his joint and holds his breath, he looks at me and says in that voice he uses where he's trying to speak without exhaling, "You want some........  No.... thought so....... I had to ask." He's visibly more relaxed and drinks some more of his Stella.
"we ought to be going in and starting." I say
"yeah yeah in a minute. Relax you've got plenty of time. I've got these drinks to finish."
"Bring them with you."
"Nah too much to carry I'll drink them  now and catch up with you. You go on in I'll be there in a minute."
Back in the Pub Denise, my girl friend, tells me the Landlord has been asking where we were.  I look across at the bar and give the Landlord the thumbs up. Grabbing my guitar I sit down on my high stool and do the final tuning before we start. I lean forward "Denise go and fetch  Dill. Tell we're on."
To kill time I rearrange the microphone stand check my leads.
Denise returns looking worried. "Looks like you're on your own."
"What? Where's Dill?"
"He's wasted. He can barely stand never mind play bass."
"Damn I knew it."
"Can you do this by yourself?"
"I'm going to have to. You go make sure the boy is OK. I 'll look after this end."
This almost the final straw for me. I couldn't do it anymore, I couldn't watch my best friend destroy himself any more.. Many times we have sat in his music room drinking and chatting, playing music until he took to drugs. I watched his sparkle fade, I watched his skin go grey, I watched his fingers turn brown, I begged him to stop. I pleaded with him. His marriage was on a terminal downward spiral, a war of attrition. The raft of empty beer cans  thrown on the floor got deeper. Plagues of fruit flies rose up as you waded through the sea of cans. I tried to tidy up once he pointed a gun at me and said simply "NO!"
I walked out of his house and never went back.
Through the grapevine I heard he lost his job, his drug taking got worse and he stopped going out. He sank into deep depression.
Dill has just recently resurfaced, this time asking for help. It's been 11 months since he last left his house. I invited him to stay with us for the weekend. He replied to my invitation this morning "I'm not fit enough to venture out right now, but as a plus I have managed 24 hours dry."

3 Comments:

Blogger Z said...

Did you ever read "Young Man With A Horn"?

9:25 pm  
Blogger Mike Da Hat said...

Can't say I have is it relevent?

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Anonymous Clipping Path Service said...

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Friday, October 12, 2018

Why did the Bantam cross the road?

My man bursts through the door. His hair disheveled and and a wry grin on his face. Under his arm is a black speckled Bantam. he stands swaying, vaguely proud of himself. He's begging me to ask the question without him saying a word. I give in.
"Why have you got a chicken under your arm?"
"It was crossing the road." he chuckled. I knew I should not have asked and I absolutely refused to ask the next obvious question. He's mellow, he smells of dope. His mouth is loose and floppy and the words tumble out like butterflies in the wind. "I got my girl to stop the traffic while I dived in and grabbed the bastard." he stopped looked up at the ceiling as if suddenly interested in cobwebs,"She nearly got run over."
"Spliff?"
"Don't mind if I do? What you offering? It's not like you though."
"No had the girl had a spliff?"  But it was like asking someone if they had a cup of tea or coffee with breakfast, of course.
"Errr yeah but she ran out all the same, stopped the cars. while I chased this little bugger. It's very friendly. So I took it home."
"What with your dogs?"
"Ahhhhh the dogs. Hmmmm they were eyeing it up. You could tell. They were 'aving that. No two ways."
"So what are you going to do with it?"
"Well...." he stopped to consider his words, which words hmmmm so many words, which of them can I remember? ".,,, a few friends wanted to take it off my hands but it would only last until Sunday lunch."
"It's a Bantam there's no meat on it."
"You knows it bro.... You fucking knows it."
"So?"
"I'm taking it to the Vets."
"They don't microchip chickens."
"Nah they'll send it to a chicken sanctuary. It'll be looked after and cared for. It will have a good life. That's what we all want isn't it?"
"I guess. Do chicken sanctuary s exist. Are they a thing?"
"Sure. Of course they do." I let that one go. He believed it. Why crush him when he's on a high? "Hey look this Bantam loves me. It's so friendly. Doesn't struggle. Look I can do this..." and he hold the chicken to his face, it pecks at his lips. That's him made up. In a world of drugs and alcohol, crime and instant retribution, even a chicken can show love. "..you see that?"
"Yes. You have a way with animals."
"They don't fuck you over. They're honest."
For all his faults, his alcoholism and the drug abuse I can't fault him for his humanity. He loves his dogs, he loves animals and now he loves Bantams. He is polite, well spoken and generous with the little he has. His language is liberally sprinkled with profanities, I filter them out.
"Well I'd better get this little beauty to the vets then." he says.
"Well you can't hold it all day."
"No. It'll be OK won't it?"
I reassure him "Of course. They'll see it right."
"That's what I thought. I'd better go then. I'm swinging by the offy on the way back. You want anything?"
"No I'm good thanks."
As for why the chicken wanted to cross the road, I guess we'll never know. Maybe the grass was greener.

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Monday, October 08, 2018

Life on the back seat

It's cold and the start of another week. I drive Zed to work. Pulling up I notice the window is slightly open on an abandoned car. A black face peers out and a hand waves.
"Who's that?"
"That's Moses, he sleeps there sometimes."
"In that car?"
"When he hasn't anywhere else to go. Which is quite often. He helps us out sometimes."
"What? He works for you?"
"No, he just helps out sometimes. Once we let him sleep in the back of one of our lorries."
Moses waves again, I see on his other hand he has a bright red boxing glove, I don't even want to think why? it's too early. He has a big smile on his face. I wave back. He holds up a costa cup as if to say "life is good, I have coffee." For someone reduced to sleeping in the back of an abandoned car he seems very happy.
Zed unlocks the door and walks in turning round to wave goodbye. I pull away, in my rear view I see Moses get out the car and walk to Zeds door.  Zed will give him more coffee and breakfast. I did wonder why she took the box of Alpen to work.

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Blogger Liz said...

Zed is one excellent human.

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Saturday, September 22, 2018

Life in the slow lane

I had for the corner shop to get my paper. Mrs Slow is on the till. My heart sinks. The queue is already five people deep. I grab my paper and join the queue. It's painful to watch her doing everything in slow motion, slowly, methodically analysing each item carefully before presenting it to the bar code reader. Nothing happens. She turns the item round slowly. Still nothing. She pulls the item closer to herself to have a good look at it all round to find the bar code. She can't find it. Her hand is covering it. Eventually she finds it and thinking very carefully decides which way round to hold the item. The reader beeps. She then decides how she is going to place the scanned item in the bag. People in front of me are tapping their feet, shuffling and generally seething quietly. It takes what seems like hours to scan the four items. Then we get to the money. Decisions decisions what combination of coins would be most appropriate to give to the customer. She selects a few coins thinks better of it, drops them back in the till  and selects a few more, then counts them from one hand to the other and counts them again slowly into the waiting customers hand. We're done hooray"! Next. But no she has to enquire about the customers children. Internally I'm screaming, "For Gods sake..." The customer well aware of the queue behind her is trying to leave but Mrs Slow leans over the top of the till to impart more words of comfort and sympathy. Fi9nally she customer drags herself away from the pointless conversation and Mrs Slow steadies herself before looking up to the next customer who sprints forward as fast as possible throwing his two packets of chocolate and a can of drink onto the counter. his speed in unnecessary. it wont make any difference. it will still take ten minutes to scan three items. I muse that at this rate I'll have time to read all five sections of the paper, do the crossword and the soduko and still have time to return the paper to the shelf and leave before I get to pay. By now there are five more customers behind me. Mrs Slow looks up at the lengthening queue and places her hand under the counter and rings a bell for assistance. No one comes, they are all behind the mirror door laughing.
Eventually, just as I am losing the will to live, I arrive at the front of the queue. I give her the exact money £2.20. She counts it carefully, very carefully, there's four five pence pieces, I couldn't have made it harder for her. She looks up and nods I'm halfway to the door, "Excuse me." she calls, "would you like your receipt?"
"No." As I leave I see her carefully screwing up the receipt and looking for a bin to throw it in. I don't know if she found one.
I leave the shop my man is coming down he road to collect his breakfast I say "Mrs Slow is on the till."
He spins round "Polish shop then."
"You OK?"
"Never better." he replies, "it's all good."
These are not words I normally expect from him. Normally some sort of tragedy has happened in his life."Better go get breakfast then?" I venture.
"Yep Breakfast first then get cracking. I've got loads to do."
But I know  after his normal breakfast of four cans of super strong lager, his day will go to shit. But for now he's relatively chipper and full of the joys of spring even though it's autumn. It wont last.
I carry on home and settle down with my paper. My man walks past my window waving an opened can in one hand, the other three cans dangling from the plastic wrap down by his side. Breakfast is served. I settle back with the crossword "1a Diana giving emphasis when much troubled (10)" Yep that's what he's going to be soon when the beer runs out.

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Tuesday, September 18, 2018

My man has family

My man isn't a particularly big guy, but he has no fear. Whether it's the alcohol or the drugs I don't know. He walks the streets with confidence. But trouble inevitably finds him. He wont back down. he wont look the other way, if someone gives him shit he'll deal it straight back at them and damn the consequences. He will disappear for a week or two and come back announcing his return from yet another hospital visit where they've patched him up again.
I once asked him why he keeps insisting on getting into fights. He gave me a hard stare as if I'd insulted him "You think I can't look after myself?" he snarled.
"Well you keep getting hurt."
"It's the other four you should worry about, this is nothing to what they got."
I then find out back in the day he was a semi pro boxer. He hasn't boxed in a ring in many years, not since the drugs and alcohol took over his life. So he has no worries about losing his licence, he lost that years ago. He lost a lot.
But despite living in a world of violent drug abusers and drunks, he is a gentle soul, very polite and well spoken, if you ignore the torrent of bad language that inhabits his mouth. He will hold open a door for a lady. He says "please" and "thank you", he will ask after your health despite himself looking like he's on his way to the crem with a made to measure cut price coffin crafted from old pallets. He will offer directions and advice to anyone, even offer me a can of his strong lager. I refuse equally politely, saying "It's a bit early for me."
I often wonder how he came to this. In one of our in depth conversations it transpired his brother is a millionaire living in a loft apartment just off Central Park in New York. He couldn't afford the apartment that actually overlooked Central Park, much to my mans amusement.
I ask him if his brother could help him out financially at all."My brother wouldn't piss on me if I was on fire.... wait... turn that round... I wouldn't piss on him if he was on fire. We don't speak. Never will again I don't suppose."
Well what's he doing in New York?"
"That's where the money is and his trophy wife. " then under his breath almost silently "bitch!" he looks about as if suddenly embarrassed, not wanting to look me in the eye "she fucked me over. The money grabbing gold digging cow. She's the one who turned my brother against me and took all the money for themselves, leaving me with nothing."
"What did they do?"
"It's not important I might tell you one day, I might not.  I'm going to the offy. You want me to get you anything?"
"No thanks I'm good."
He opens my door looks up and down the street and staggers out. He doesn't look back. He doesn't wave. He's already seen someone he needs to catch up with.

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Monday, September 17, 2018

Cross dressing your ethnicity

My man walks in. He wearing a thobe, a long shirt favoured by Muslims, it has gold embroidery round the neck and cuffs. No collar. Brown open toed sandals peek out from below his shirt. He stands there silent swaying gently as if trying to take stock of the situation. He mouths a few words bu no words come out. I think he has finally lost it. Grabbing hold of the back of a chair, he steadies himself and tries to speak again. "I got myself arrested again. They've just let me out."
I'm past being shocked at this, my man and the police are on first name terms, he's one of their regulars, he has his own cell and they know he preferences for breakfast, except they don't serve his preference. Extra strong lager is not on the list.  Tea, coffee, toast yes but Tennents Super, no.
I had to ask. "What did you get arrested for this time?"
"I decked a guy." he is not his usual eloquent self, I'll need to dig it out of him.
"Why?"
"He didn't like my shirt."
"The shirt you're wearing now?"
"Yes." He rubs a hand across his unshaven chin then over his head as if bored. "I can wear what the fuck I like."
"Yes but...." I begin.
"He said I was disrespecting his religion by wearing this. I told him he was disrespecting his own religion by threatening me, he wouldn't leave it so I gave him a couple, one in the gut and as he went down another on his chin." he goes to demonstrate and has to quickly grab the back of the chair again, the swift one two was too much for him in his state. "I left him in the road" he continued, " and walked home. The old bill came knocking an I took a ride down to the nick."
"Are you being charged?"
"What do you think?"
"You got let off with a warning?"
"Booooom!"
"So matey boy didn't press charges then?"
"Apparently not, he called the police of course but then didn't press it."
"So why the shirt then?"
"Don't you start."
I dropped it. I guess we'll never know the secret of the thobe.
My man wanders off to find a proper breakfast in a ring pull can.

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Saturday, July 14, 2018

Being dead was fun for a while

The  results from my Psych Eval are in. Turns out I'm an Introvert. I always told people I was an extrovert based on all the abt shit crazy dangerous stuff I've done. But really, it seems, I'm an Introvert. Thinking about it, it kinda makes sense. I don't like parties. If I go to parties I am either in the garden or in the Kitchen. If I go to a show and there are looking for volounteers to go up on stage I visibly shrink into my chair, at the back, hoping I wont be noticed. I never sit in the front row of anything. Even when I got married I rather hoped I could have a seat at the back and just watch. I could have a body double who stands at the front with my wife and does all the "I do" stuff.
It's my 60th birthday this year. My worst nightmare is someone suggesting we have a party to celebrate it. NO NO NO. You have the party I'll be in my studio working on photos.
The best party that never was thrown for me was when I died. Obvously I didn't die but the local paper erroneously reported my death A load of people started organising a memorial party for me, with music and bands and lots of beer. It would have been great. It would have been my best party ever. Except I wasn't dead. When they found out I was still alive it was cancelled. Everyone assumed I'd be really angry that the Peterborough Evening telegraph could be so insenstive to report my death. But  I wasn't angry at all, I found it hilarious.
So I'm an introvert. I don't like crowds of people. I purposefully live in the arse end of nowhere to be away from people, I don't like parties, I don't do small talk, I switch off and walk away if people are boring me (I am famous for this) but I will quite happily walk on stage with my guitar and play either with my band or play solo. I never had a problem with this but I can't do kareoke.
Zed is my salvation. She is an extrovert. You'd think an introvert living with an extrovert is a recipe for disaster. In fact for me she is a Godsend. We go to the pub. Inevitably Zed gets stuck in talking to all and sundry I hover in the background enjoying my beer. We're seen as a very sociable couple except it's Zed doing all the socialising. She is my buffer to society. She does all the talking I do the listening and watching and analysing, watching body language. Looking around the pub seeing who is doing what, who is talking to who, working out who are genuine friends and who aren't, like scientific research. I never stop until "What do you think  Mikel?"
"What? Sorry. What was that?"
Sometimes I feel like a ghost, enjoying the chatter the people and everything going on but not really being there. Then someone will spoil it by telling me to cheer up and enjoy myself. Well actually I was enjoying myself until the exact moment you told me to cheer up. I might be sitting at the back quietly drinking my beer but honestly,  I'm having a great time.
I think I'll enjoy being dead, a ghost, and no one to tell me to "cheer up".
In the meantime I have Zed to shield me from society, and my dog who doesn't talk much. What more do I need?

1 Comments:

Blogger Sister Sunshine said...

You two are perfect together. The dog is awesome... I want one just like him!

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Thursday, June 28, 2018

The gorgeous stunner

She stood there in clothes she hadn't the energy to put on properly, her top hanging off her upper arm, like she had  no strength left to push it up the rest of the way up over her shoulders, and she'd forgotten how to tie shoe laces. She was floppy like a rag doll swaying this way and that. forward and backward.
"ahhh we goin nah."
"We will be soon." says my man. He'd picked up yet another waif from the streets. he's a sucker for them. Inevitably they'll steal his stuff and rip him off. But in the meantime he has his own house and a roof he can put over their heads. I don't ask what he gets in return but I can guess. Everyone of them is "gorgeous" and "A stunner". It's like a conveyor belt of "gorgeous stunners" who just happen to be homeless addicts. All credit to him he doesn't seem to distinguish between race or colour, black white and all the shades in between, they are all "gorgeous stunners". His only criteria is they tolerate his dogs.
"ahhhm tire nee sleee" she slurred
"I'll get you to into bed soon." he turns and winks at me.
I say "You'd better get her home before you have to carry her home."
"She'll be OK when I get her walking. One too many dragons if you get my meaning."
"Errrr yeaaaah. Look out she's slipping."
He spins round in time to catch her under the arms and steady her "We'd better go" he says.
"I reckon you're right, she's got a lot to sleep off by the look of it. You gonna be OK?"
"Oh yeah. No problem. I'll see you later.... come on sweet heart lets get you home to bed."
They stumble off down the road the girl already half asleep, her head  on his shoulder. her legs moving automatically.

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Friday, May 04, 2018

Dog Theft In The Parallel Universe

My main man from the parallel universe  of drugs and depravity, staggers into my gaff. he's stinking of booze and weed. His hair is a mess and his clothes filthy. He's followed by a petite mouthy girl, equally dishevelled and sporting that fashionable heroin chic look. "Tell him then. Tell him. tell him about your dog." she whines in a particularly grating voice.
I look at my man "What about your dog then?"
"It was stolen."
"When? By who?" I ask in my best deeply concerned tone, knowing his dog meant everything to him.
"My ex boyfriend that's who?" pipes up the girl. "You tell him. Go on, tell him what he did."
"Well if you know who took the dog surely you can go round and get it back."
"He aint got it any more. The fucker sold it didden 'ee."
"So he steals your dog and sells it?"
"Yes for money for drugs. he's an addict. My dog stolen an' sold for the price of a hit."
"Hang on your dog is chipped isn't it."
"Yeah but it didn't stop him nicking my dog."
"What are you going to do? Report it to the police?"
"Don't make me laugh. Fucking special branch are not coming round to look for my dog. The only time you call the police is to get a crime number and even then you think twice about getting them involved. We have our own ways of doing things....."
In the parallel universe the police are not even an option. You don't call the law when you're in the habit of breaking it yourself. You find other means of finding justice.
By this time Miss Mouthy is hopping from one foot to another and chewing gum like her life depended on it.
my man continues ".... yeah me and a few mates will go round, and beat the living shite out of him."
"Firm but fair." I say, then venturing. "Maybe a little excessive." Knowing full well that the word excessive is not in their vocabulary. Not in their world.
Miss Mouth still hopping says "Come on you said we'd get some drink."
"Yeah right, OK, in a minute. I'm talking."
"But you said...."
"Shut it. I said in a minute." He turns to me and says his usual "We're going to the offy. You want I get you anything?"
I do my usual "It's OK I'm good thanks."

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Monday, December 04, 2017

This years Christmas roundup

This has been an eventful year of which I am very proud my eldest daughter has been experimenting with drugs and a very nice policeman informed us she would have made Hunter S Thomson proud, the amount and variety of drugs they found in her flat was astounding. I always knew her science background and curiousity would stand her in good stead. My eldest boy has retreated to the furthest reaches of nowhere, where he can continue be totally oblivious to the world around him. I like to think of him as an "ascete"  finding a high calling in a simple life and frugal living. The reality is he just hates people and doesn't have a job so he's broke.
Daughter number 2, I forget her name, I haven't really, but hilarity ensues when we all call her Number 2,  anyway daughter number 2, is currently jobless after having been sacked for "Borrowing some coffee money" from petty cash at work. At least one of them has a job now. Well that is,if they keep the job open for Daughter number 1 while she is in the slammer on those silly drug charges. Why people can't be open minded about these things is beyond me. Her little boy (my grandson) only got a tiny bit of methadone, he slept for days, quietest he's been in a long while considering his condition. It must have been a relief for the foster carers, until the drug wore off that is, Then God help them.
You remember Bobby, our little Robert, well he's big now, very big. He works out in the Gym a lot, he's getting noticed in the world of Body building, in his spare time he works for some guy on the door of his club, he doesn't stand any nonsense, none at all, you only have to look in his direction and he's on the case and you're on the ground only to wake up hours later in casualty. he blames the steroids and the testosterone injections for his mood swings, but really he just takes after his mother. Bless her heat slaving away on the corner of Burghley Road doing business. I've never seen her actual business plan as such and she didn't need a loan from the bank at all to start up but she seems to be very successful. For the first time in a  while we have some spare cash. but as she works only evenings and nights so I don't see much of her.
I'm still slaving away on my first novel about an alcoholic private detective, it's in the research phase right now so I go to seedy night clubs to soak up the atmosphere, to get a feel for my characters.
So that's where we are this year, Sorry it's not a personal letter just a round robin but I hope you all have had as  good a year as me and my little family have had.
Merry Christmas and God bless.

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Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Rabbit catching

I got into a conversation with an old man, he was not happy. he'd just been fined £75 for catching rabbits. I said "Surely no one is going to miss a few rabbits, I mean there's enough of them they breed like errr.... rabbits"
"Back in the day I worked 22 farms catching rabbits keeping them under control. I used to go round the farms in rotation, catching rabbits, taking out the mixies, them with Mixamatosis, farmers would be happy, the rabbits left would be healthier, everyone was happy and I made a living. Today I get fined £75 for catching a rabbit. What's the world coming to? It's all gone to blazes."
"What about the farmers? Don't they want the rabbits kept under control anymore?"
"No. No one works the land anymore. Not in the sense that we worked the land. We looked after the land, cared for it, we understood the rise and fall, the balance. Not anymore. The land is exploited now. It's a business to make money. farmers are now business men. Sometimes I wonder if they actually know their land at all other than how big their farm is how many fields they own. It's sad. There are those that remember the old days, but they won't go back to it, they can't."
"There must be some farmers out there who care."
"If there are I haven't met them. But maybe you're right, there will be some who respect the land and treat it right, but too few of them.  They're a dying breed. I'll be dead soon and everything I know will be gone with me."
"Do you have children? You can teach?"
"My children ha ha bloody townies the lot of em. They have no interest in the old ways. All they want is their new cars an' holidays abroad an trips to Tescos. What I have to teach them would mean they'd have to do some bleedin work. They'd have to get up in the mornings. Can you imagine that? Getting up in the bleedin morning to work on the land?  I don't think so. They don't have the soil under their fingernails."
"But so many people have allotments. They're still growing their own food. There's still an interest. There are people out there with "soil, under their fingernails"."
"Hat's off to them for trying, we need more of them, but they aren't farmers, they're just playing at it. I'd love to go back to the old ways but it's not going to happen. So we'll just keep taking from the land and eventually the land will be dead. But then so will I and I wont have to see it."


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Blogger Z said...

I suspect he'd got a pheasant or two in with his rabbits, it's not illegal to shoot a bunny at any time of the year!

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12:07 pm  
Blogger Tim said...

Interesting - I suspect he was a bit cross and confused and just used you as a chance to sound off. And I'm sure you're very grateful to 'Jason Borne' for his contribution to the debate, it's good to know how to counter spam, isn't it?

9:52 pm  
Blogger bandit said...

Lovely. The serendipitous fortune I mean. And the land, and caretaking and "the vine of indifference" shorn and trampled upon at every opportunity. Just when we're feeling there may be no hope, we find someone who cares.

12:43 am  
Blogger bandit said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

4:41 am  
Blogger bandit said...

yeah, I mucked up the location, then read further, so, try again - Doppelganger East Side of River City - will wonders never cease? Obviously not, but "things are the same all over" comes to mind. It's when the observer in you becomes the observed, and then you question "why"? Maybe that's where the zen comes in, hopefully to save your sorry ass. Speaking figuratively , of course. I'm off ... care.

5:04 am  
Blogger bandit said...

it did it again. Fuck. leave it then ...

5:05 am  
Blogger bandit said...

doppelganger etc. etc. etc.

NSA has a program to pick from a suite to jack your ass whenever they like. Works well on Firefox, it'll re write your postings and such. Well, let's see how this one goes "Mark at Artemis" and 3-2-1-

5:10 am  
Blogger bandit said...

you have this problem often?

5:11 am  

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Friday, September 15, 2017

People watching

The big man has fallen. The drug lords financial persuader and enforcer was sacked a few months ago. He has fallen from the dizzy heights of being the drug cartels most feared intimidator, to nothing. The Smack Crack and Cocaine Emporium has continued without his services and in turn he has dragged himself into the gutter. No longer wearing designer clothes, he crawls around in ripped track suits and worn out trainers, inevitably clutching a can of Tyskie. I don't suppose it's any coincidence that a couple of months ago his wife kicked him out and he is now homeless as well. It's pitiful.
I take my dog to the park and Mallen walks by also holding his usual can of strong lager at 8:30 in the morning. he says "Good morning". he's not  the sharpest knife in the drawer, but he's polite and harmless.  He stops to talk to the man with the square dog. I have never seen a dog that is so angular. Nature abhors straight lines but this dog defies nature. It's like a box with legs.
The Muslims who live in the end house make me laugh. I think they must have a sense of humour. The wife is dressed completely in a black burka you can only see her eyes, she says to me "Beautiful dog" pointing at Scout, then I notice it. Under her burka she is wearing bright fluorescent green training shoes. Then her husband comes out the house, he is in a Postmans uniform except he is wearing bright fluorescent Yellow training shoes.
Miss Amphetamine continues to speed up and down the road, she walks incredibly fast, she talks incredibly fast, she can't stay still. She doesn't have time to wash or do anything with her long unkempt hair she just has to get out the house and speed walk up and down the road all day. Whereas Mrs Slow is the exact opposite, everything in slow motion, frustratingly slow. if she is on the till aty the local shop I do a 180 and come back rather than stand in a queue for fifteen minutes while she very slowly and methodically picks up each item turns it around to look for the bar code and then very carefully scans it before slowly putting it into a bag. She reminds me of "Slow TV" where a fixed camera shows the progress of a ship on a 2 day cruise cruising up a fjord or a camera on a train taking an 8 hour trip up through Norway.
People come in many forms, they are all interesting in their own way.

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Monday, July 17, 2017

Pulp (non) Fiction

So we're in the kitchen and Zoe fueled with copious amounts of prosecco starts dancing "like a loon". I join in and we're replicating the dance scene in "Pulp Fiction" I'm John  Travolta and Zoe is Uma Thurman, well I think it was that way round, gender equality an all that.
Eventually Zoe says "You know I've never lived with anyone stupid enough to dance with me in the kitchen before."
"Thanks ...errrr... I think."

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Friday, July 07, 2017

The Indian Pissing contest

I'm in an Indian restaurant with my two good friends Mike and Rory, they are musicians, guitarists although Mike is a multi- instrumentalist, there is no occasion, we're just there for a meal. The waiter comes over to take our order. Mike says "I'll have the chicken Phall, with extra chilli."
"But Sir the Phall is already our hottest dish."
"Yes I know," says Mike,  "But I'd like it hotter. As hot as you can."
"Are you sure?"
"Yes Phall with a lot more chilli."
"I'll get the chef." The waiter hurries away and comes back a few minutes later with the chef.
"I'm told you want the Chicken Phall.... but with extra chilli?"
"Yes."
"This no ordinary Phall, it's very hot,  I make it myself,are you sure you wont have the regular Phall?"
"No I want extra chillis."
"OK But understand I am making this to your specification so you don't send it back if you don't like it."
"Yes absolutely. Hot as you like. Hotter." The chef walks away shaking his head, the waiter writes down Mikes order he turns to Rory.
"I'll have the same as him."
"The extra hot chicken Phall?"
"Yes."
The waiter looks at me expectantly, but I'm not joining in their pissing contest. I say "I'll have the Jalfrezi."
We chat over beers and the food arrives. Two extra hot Phalls and my relatively mild (But still spicy) Jalfrezi. The waiter is hovering. I look over to the kitchen the chefs are watching as Mike picks up his fork digs in and takes a mouth full. It takes his breath away, his face is turning red and little beads of sweat start appearing on his forehead.
"Everything toy  your satisfaction Sir?" asks the waiter sarcstically.
Mike looks up and croaks "Yes perfect, just as I like it." The waiter smiles and walks off. I swear he was doing a  fist pump.
Rory takes a mouthful, immediately he is reaching for his lager. he put's his hand up to attract the waiters attention "Three more cobras here please." he gasps.
"Of course Sir."
Meanwhile my Jalfrezi is perfection, delicately balanced flavours, nice level of heat, with a side order of cucumber and mint relish. I watch Mike and Rory match each other fork for fork, neither will admit defeat, except Mike has the higher ground as he is not drinking half a bottle of Cobra between mouthfuls. I am enjoying watching them struggle. Macho nonsense. They are both red faced and sweating. Finally they finish. Mike pronounces it the best curry he's ever had,  Rory says "It could have been hotter."
Then in an act of bravado Mike goes to the kitchen to congratulate the chef on a fine curry.
I was not sure how he could tell it was a fine curry.  

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Blogger Sir Bruin said...

I'm with you on this. Jalfrezi is plenty hot enough

3:42 pm  

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Wednesday, July 05, 2017

Getting old in the underworld

My main man came to see me. his dog fell asleep in Scouts bed. Scout was not happy with that. I said to him"Your dog is very quiet. That's unusual. Normally it runs about everywhere."
"He's just been to the vets."
"Why? What's wrong with your dog?"
"It ate £10 worth of marijuana. So he's a bit zonked now."
My man was mugged the other day. he was getting £20 out of the machine in the wall, he took the money from the machine, turned around and a man punched him in the face. He fell to the floor and the man grabbed his money and ran off. He was not really hurt but more shocked and surprised. Then he was very angry. He said he knew the man who did it. He knows all the bad people round here.. So now he has all his friends looking for him. This is another world within a world. A world you don't see but it's there all around you. It's the same everywhere.
A few days ago a man we saw an old man, bent with age and arthritis, he couldn't walk very well and was very polite.When he had gone he said "I know that man,When I was growing up his family were the worst. he was the father and all his children were thugs. Everyone was scared of them. They thought they could do anything and get away with it. So they did what they wanted. Can you believe that?""
"No I wouldn't."
"Well it's true. Complete bastards the lot of them. They made everyones lives a misery. Now he is saying please and thank you because he is old and weak."
"What about the kids? What happened to them?"
"Well when he couldn't back them up anymore, they sorta lost their courage. It was false courage. To be fair they were all a bunch of cowards, living on their father reputation and when that went so did theirs. They drifted off to other places. We don't see them anymore. Just him. You wouldn't believe it would you to look at him?"

1 Comments:

Blogger Z said...

Ah, I hate it when people fall asleep in my bed because they're stoned.

10:19 am  

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Wednesday, May 03, 2017

Life is pain. Suck it up Princess.

So my man staggers into my gaff looking rougher than a badgers arse, Wayward hair, sunken eyes and swaying.
"You look rough." I venture the obvious.
"Don't just don't."
Which of course means "Do ask" or he wouldn't have come staggering in in the first place. So I ask "What happened?"
"Oh mate. Had a late one last night with the girl. Woke up this morning and she was gone, so was my f**king phone. She only went an stole m'phone, the bitch."
 This is a new girl. Not the Russian Princess. The new girl is really an old girlfriend who has resurfaced after a few years inside, possession and supply of class A drugs amongst other things. A new Princess.
"You were getting on with her though."
"I thought so too. Then she does that. I'm going to give her a good slapping when I catch up with her.I'll twat the bitch from here to next week, I'll..."
"You know maybe she didn't take your phone."
"I know exactly where I left it, an that bitch has took it. I've already been round her house she's not there. Just as well considering the shit storm she's got comin' to 'er. You wouldn't want to be on the same planet when i catch up with her the bitch."
"Er isn't that her coming down the road?"
"Yes stay out of it . It's gonna get ugly." he runs out the door, grabs her arm and  "Hey babe where have you been?"
"I just nipped out to get us breakfast." she holds up a carrier bag.
"Have you got my phone?"
"No. It's on charge in the kitchen. I thought you might need it charging."
"I was so worried about you. I've been looking all over. Anything could have happened. I was worried."
Well that was the "shit storm" she had to endure. The overwhelming pain of being called "Babe" multiple times.

2 Comments:

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Friday, April 07, 2017

Love in the slow lane

My man comes into my gaff. He doesn't look happy.
"What's the matter?" I ask."
"Don't ask." he says
But I know the only reason he came to see me because he wants me to ask.
"Go on tell me all about it."
"Well you know that Russian girl who was living with me?"
"'Was' living with you? What happened to her?  Where did she go?"
"I kicked her out didn't I."
"Why? I thought you  two were getting on fine."
"We were. She's a right little stunner. She moved in and everything was peachy. We got on fine had a few laughs."
"And.... what went wrong?"
"I came back home from shopping. heard some noise upstairs and there she is in bed with the son of a mate of mine. In MY bed."
"Jeez!"
"She actually waved at me to say hello as if nothing was wrong. So I dragged the little fuck out of MY bed and twatted him. Then kicked him out the house. Then I kicked her out the house."
"Job done then."
"No she's crying and screaming  that she didn't want to leave and she had done nothing wrong. Can you believe that? She didn't think she had done anything wrong. Just a bit of fun. Just a bit of fun? NO that's taking the piss."
"So she's history now then."
"Damned straight she's history. And as for that little twat... I'm having him."
"I thought you already gave him a belting."
"Not enough he ran before I could really sort him out. Teach him some manners. The little fuck. I'll..." he trailed off and looked out the window. I followed his glance and saw his "stunning" Russian girl walking up the road  "Gotta go." he says "looks like there's gonna be trouble." and he runs out the door after her "Martina Martina" he's shouting after her.  She stops, looks round and he catches up with her. Puts his arm round her shoulder and they walk off together. Aint love grand?

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Artemis

Artemis, five foot ten, wrapped up in a padded brown jacket red baseball cap and further insulated with a big brown beard. He's standing outside my gaff with all his possessions in a shopping trolley. He's looking for something, riffling through his stuff. He looks up "Gudding morning" he says. "I looking for food." He laughs then stops. I have a pack of three hot cross buns. I show him the pack and offer him one. his hand darts into the pack and he pulls one out. he holds it carefully with both hands, and smells it. "Good" he pronounces. But  he doesn't eat it. he carefully puts it in his pocket for later.
Artemis is Russian. He was born in September 1972 in a  town a few hundred kilometres from Moscow. I can't pronounce the name. he was married then divorced and somehow ended up in Peterborough.
"I am Russian!" he proclaims beating his fists on his chest "Ya Russkiy." He seems quite proud of that fact. Turning back to his trolley he resumes his search. he pulls out a crumpled plastic drinks bottle with a  piece of baking foil pushed into the neck. "my pipe." he explains, keeping it low down and almost out of sight.
With a  swift movement he turns away from the road and ducks down by the wall of my gaff, crouching he flicks his lighter and sucks on the bottom of the crumpled bottle. The bottle fills with smoke and he breathes in deeply.  Just one pull and he puts his "pipe" back in the trolley and covers it up. The effect on him isn't obviously noticeable. But he seems satisfied. He pats his pocket with the Hot Cross bun in it.  The bun is still there.  "I am RUSSIAN." he repeats emphasising Russian. Suddenly he is taller. "Goodbye my friend. I go." and he wheels his shopping trolley down the road.

There's a war going on. Not the one in Syria. Or anywhere else. But right here, unseen. The Russians and the Pakistanis fighting it out for control of the drug world. I don't think Artemis is part of this war, he's too... polite. Mr Charisma the most boring man on the planet walks past. 68 years old and still not a clue. The world carries on around him and he's totally oblivious to everything.

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Thursday, March 09, 2017

The shitty fur coat

A yeti walks into my gaff. I do a  double take. It's my man, my ear on the street. he is dressed in a full length fur coat. He looks like Chewbacca.
"Whaddya think?" he says doing a twirl  and smoothing down the synthetic fur with a swoop of his hands.
He really doesn't want to know what I think. It's awful. It's cheap and nasty and has no pockets. I demand to know why it has no pockets. This flusters him a bit and he throws in arguments that it's all about style not function and I should not be so judgemental when it comes to fashion there are higher things to consider. This coming from my man who does more drugs than anyone I know. "Get this for a hit" he says later on in our  conversation "the girls came round pretty flush with gear, she loads up this pipe  with marijuana and  heroin then on top a lump of  crack, she says light that bastard up. So I give it some flame and BOOOM."
"I thought you said you'd given up drugs."
"It was free."
"Oh that's OK then. But that's a rare old combination of drugs."
"Gotta be done. But what a  hit BOOOOM just like that. I'm still a bit  wankered now to be honest."
"So these girls. What's their story?"
"Oh they're professionals."
"Prostitutes?"
"No, good God no.  Shop lifters."
"That's  their job?"
"Yes. That's how they earn a  living.  They're very good at it. Get you anything. They usually leave on the price tag and you pay half the tag price. You name it they'll get it for  you."
"Not exactly moral is it? I mean it's plain stealing."
"No they only lift from the big stores like John Lewis and they can afford it."
"So that makes it right then?"
"Well yeah they don't  lift from small independent stores that would be wrong."
"Hmmmm interesting set of values you've got there."
"Well I don't  steal anything."
"But do you buy from them?"
"Bits an bobs. But they've already stolen it. So I can't do anything about that. It's done."
"That's like meat eaters who say it's OK to eat meat because the animal is already dead. What if they had to kill and butcher the animal themselves? Not so keen then."
"What are you talking about?"
"You. You're happy to have stolen goods as long as you don't have to know where it's come from."
"Well I haven't stolen it, if I don't have it someone else will."
"And pedophiles who think it's  OK to look at child pornography because they're not harming anyone. Of course they are. If they didn't subscribe there would be no market and so no harm."
"So I'm a pedo now am I?"
"No it's just an analogy of cause and effect."
"I think you need to step into the real world. See what's it's really like down here at street level. Struggling to survive. You have to do what you can. Do what's necessary.  It's OK for you wiv your job an money an all. But what about us? We've been friends for longer  than I remember but you don't really know do you?  You can't know. Unless you've walked in my shoes you'll never know."
"I try and understand."
"But you  don't. You see but you don't feel. It's like those fucking politicians up there, looking down on us. They pass laws, they make decisions, they haven't a fucking clue. Their idea of poverty is only having three holidays a year instead of four. This is not  a compassionate society. They keep squeezing and then wonder why shit happens. Why there's more drugs, why there's more robberies, why there's more violence. So they squeeze harder and it just gets worse. The harder they squeeze us the more we fight back. It's your cause and effect."
"Have I upset you?"
"Have you fuck, we're mates. You can say what you like."
"It's  a shit fur coat."
"Now  you're stepping over the line. I'm going to the offy you  want anything?"
"No I'm good  thanks."

1 Comments:

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12:36 am  

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Monday, February 27, 2017

Retiring from the mob

I am beginning to get some inside information on the owner of The Smack Crack and Cocaine Emporium. It seems he has a little side business that involves relocating troublesome people. The word is anyone can disappear without trace, just an overnight trip to the Norfolk marshes or the fens, and problem solved, no body, no evidence, no crime, just another missing person statistic.
I delve a little deeper. The victim is lifted straight off the street and delivered "gift wrapped" to the man. Who armed with only plastic sheets and a cornishman, relocates the body to somewhere very quiet. This is all done in the dead of the night. The only time his white van ever moves.
The Police are not particularly concerned about a missing drug dealer, a wannabee drugs baron. They move about enough anyway. They upset people and do a runner. So if they're reported missing it's another problem gone from their patch. So they just do the paperwork and sit on it. Everyone is happy except perhaps the poor guy who is buried on the marsh.
I had a friend, a retired fixer for some London gang. He used to drive the van to the Romney marsh, where people who had transgressed the unwritten law were disposed of. He assured me they were all "bad uns" and not one of them a "civilian". In fact he was very proud to tell me that of the many places in "The smoke" "civilians" were safest in a mob ran bar. They had the least trouble. Safer than going to your usual East End boozer. My friend was a big fella, his hand shake could crush bones in your hand. He drank whisky like water. he boasted that back in the day money was never a problem. He had the smartest suits, the best shoes and everything tailor made. he wanted for nothing.  I enquired about his "retirement". He didn't retire. No one retires from the mob without permission and then they are still on call. My friend had to disappear into hiding. So now bothered by old age and arthritis he tends his garden growing his beloved Sweet Peas and orchids keeping a very low profile. Money is tight nowadays and the suits are all gone. But he's happy now except for the arthritis that makes him swear. If you didn't know his back story you would think you couldn't meet a nicer more gentle kind of guy. He now lives in east Anglia where it's very flat and from his house he can see people coming from miles away.  But I don't suppose he will ever be called back in for duty. Not at his age. Anyway his Sweet peas and orchids take up most of his time these days.

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Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Heroin chic

Over the weekend the police raided the Smack crack and Cocaine emporium. It was a big exercise. They gathered together the cream of the British Police and hit the place hard and fast. They found nothing. The guy was clean as a whistle. His new modus operandi requires he never has any stock. he buys to order and delivers same day. Nothing ever comes home and there are never any drugs in his house. The police are visibly disappointed. Their intelligence told them this guy is a major dealer, he is. But there is no evidence. As they wound down the search  and prepared to leave Mr Dodjeeasfuk made a  big thing of trying to shake hands with the police officers with a big smile, "No hard feelings then?" "You're just doing your job"  and "Thanks for swinging by " Etc etc Some just turned their backs on him. Others reluctantly shook his hand.

Meanwhile Mr Dodjeeasfuks neighbours daughter has acquired a grey pallor. Her normal chubby face is now gaunt and thin, her whole look is Heroin chic, She has dyed her hair black to accentuate her ghostlike features. I can only guess who her supplier is. OR has she become one of his runners to fund her new habit. She is unemployed, unemployable, having been sacked three times in the last year for thieving from various shops she worked in. Taxis are on constant stand by, to take her, or members of her family, places. The money must come from somewhere.

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