Sunday, May 27, 2007

Conversations I Should Have Had With My Godson.

Please don’t assume this is about “The Birds and the Bees”. To be honest at the age of twelve he probably knows more about that subject now than I did at his age (actually thinking about it my first instance of sex education was about that age, but in London, where things seemed to be explained earlier than they are in other parts of the country. Experienced from having to sit through the same rubbish a few times as we moved around the country as I got older).

As you will probably appreciate I spend a lot of time thinking about things. Possibly too much for some peoples liking.

One of my favourite pastimes is the dialectic, to my understanding conversation taking two opposing points of view discussed in an attempt to bring some understanding to the particular situation, philosophical point, what ever.

Dialectic in my case usually occurs most of the time internally, with idealised versions of individuals. Actually quiet shockingly occasionally when the conversation or imagined opponent takes their own point of view and begins arguing their point independently.

What I’m trying to say is I spend most of time wandering round Portsmouth deep in conversation with myself like some muttering loony. Listening to the voices in my head argue with myself or each other. It can be quiet amusing when I burst forth with a witty replay only to realise that I have spoken out loud, and I could actually be frightening the other people on the bus.

One of my favourite dialectics at the moment is the conversation I should have in whole with my twelve year old godson. I have managed to broach the subject with him already in part. But the real version of the conversation is so much more spectacular (in my head).

Life is all about compromise and negotiation!

All of life is about compromise and negotiation. Every relationship, love, marriage, friendship, sex, work, is about compromise and negotiation.

You live with your parents and the things that annoy them about you is the lack of compromise (hasn’t cleaned his room, never does the dishes, could make his own breakfast). It’s only later that you appreciate the work that was done for you because you have to do it yourself. Like pay the bills, mortgage etc.

I don’t share my life (on the whole) because I am essentially a very selfish individual. I don’t want to “negotiate” watching “eastenders” to be able to watch a Star Trek episode. I don’t want to negotiate the fact I’ll be home at seven to see her parents, just for a quiet life.

I have frequently compromised my circumstances. To allow for the fact that I worked in pubs I “lived in”. They paid my bills, fed me, paid my council tax and even gave me wages (pocket money), so I worked seventy hour weeks and only took a day and a half off a week and didn’t complain (no blog then).

In my older more cynical years (actually more cynical is not really achievable I’ve always been this bad) I have become more and more convinced that love and marriage are purely compromise and negotiation for regular sex. Or in some cases (my own included here), for any sex.

Work is purely compromise with your employer for what little you can get away with doing, for as little as they want to give you for doing it.

(It’s at this point that I descended into a darkness that could only see relationship, and marriage as just an excuse for each to try and get something off each other, so I left it at that.)

As a P.S. last night I dreamt that I had two axalotals and two newts. The newts where actually huge hairy versions of the axalotals. The two huge newts killed and ate the two axalotals. Now taking the biblical precedent (Josephs interpretation of the pharaohs dream of the cows), I’m taking this two mean I’ve had two years of shit and now my luck is going to change drastically.

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Friday, May 11, 2007

Rainy Bank Holiday Monday.

As is traditional it rained Monday. It always rains bank holiday Monday (as far as I’m concerned). By some convoluted logic my company allows those of us with six months continuous service too be paid for “religious” bank holidays, but you need a years service to be paid for “non-religious” bank holidays. This particular bank holiday was not a “religious" bank holiday, I was on the rota to work. No amount of arguing on my part that, as a Pagan, all bank holidays are actually religious to me, would allow me the day off.

So I did the usual, up at seven out of the house by half past to be in work about eightish. These people are allowing me to work myself to death. Thirteen hour shifts four days a week and the odd eleven hours on the fifth day (actually Mondays). The little they pay me means I have to take what overtime they give me, and that’s overtime at basic rate, the gods forgive if the possibility of me working overtime on an occasion where I may earn more (say a bank holiday for instance) should occur. You see I can work as much overtime as I need, as long as it doesn’t give me the opportunity to actually benefit myself.

Much the same with the new position. We have to “prove” ourselves before they will consider even offering us more money. So they have four high class data analysts for half what it would cost them to actually employ them from the open market. Supply and demand will overcome this situation because I only need them as long as it takes me to get another job. The fact that they were the only people to offer me a job in a position of need, for that please read “back against the wall desperation”, is a small point.

I just feel as though I have fallen through some time warp and ended up twenty years ago (if it were not for the fact they all wear modern clothes I would think I had undergone a similar situation to the main character in “Life on Mars”).

I miss my bank holiday Mondays. I own most of the “Carry On” films on DVD. Actually from the point that during my deep days of depression I needed something light and inconsequential, as apposed to the not too surprisingly dark feast of angst and depressingly dark horrific fare that is the majority of my film collection. Nothing better than to sling on a “Carry On” and fall asleep to memories of mum cooking Sunday lunch and the rest of the family slowly drinking ourselves into a sherry addled stupor in front of the TV.

The flickering of the neon light in the gents reminds me of so many scenes from various film noir.

The down trodden hero’s profile starkly outlined against the intermittently flickering neon sign (either a bar sign from the seedy dive they live above, or the street light intruding through inadequately closed curtains). The hero (sipping at whisky from a shot glass, smoking a cigarette almost carelessly, blowing random shapes out of the window), sits on the windowsill watching the city flow past below. Sip on the whiskey, long drag on the cigarette. The sound of a police siren in the distance. Exhale, long and slow, smoke billowing towards the heavens. A drunken brawl, mostly shouting, threats of what they would do to so and so, if they caught them. The forlorn cry of an abandoned lover as she pleads in a painfully coarse, and common, voice for her mate to return, and that her impropriety meant nothing honestly. Sip of whiskey, draw on smoke.The smash of glass down some side street, heralding some other fight, or petty crime, thuggery, or vandalism. Exhale. The large old clock on the wall ticking too loudly in the quiet of the room. The drifting lilt of music from some bar down the street. The too merry karaoke style drunken revelry as some group of regulars attempt to join in. Sip of whiskey, draw in the smoke. The occasional car whizzing past with that ever present Doppler affect on the note of the engine, as it draws closer, then the shift in pitch as it passes and recedes to the distance. Clock tick, whisky sip, draw on the cigarette, nothing is going on this evening. Nothing at all. Cats fighting in the alley. Cars less and less frequent. Rise in the ever present drone of the by pass in the far distance, a road that never sleeps. Top up the whiskey from the dregs in the bottle, too little left, Have I really drunken all that? Probably.

Slowly turning to the room. Not stumbling too much. Slight chuckle to self at how difficult the simple things are. Place the bottle on the table. Remove my shoes and slump onto the mattress. Finally fall asleep.

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