Sep 30th

A Slap in the Facebook

By jazzgirl
I felt inspired to write this blog having had the warmest welcome from you guys here at The Word Cloud. Thank You. I will get round to commenting on some of your stories very soon. I'm a very very very slow reader (and slightly dylsexic) so I have to psyche myself up before I read anything!  
Writing for me comes easier than reading if that makes any sense.
Anyway, I've never actually written a blog before. This is my first one. I am a blog virgin so treat me gently, respect me in the morning and maybe we can enjoy a ciggie together afterwards .

I would like to talk to you today about my experiences with Facebook.  It's not been all bad but sometimes quite frankly it has left me in tears (cue weepy violin music). But i'll start with the good stuff:

The good thing about Facebook is that I've managed to hook up with some old schoolmates on there and it's really good to be in touch with them again. Some I don't have much in common with but there are one or two which I hope to keep in touch with for the rest of my natural now that I have found them again.

I'm ashamed to admit this but there's one friend on there that I used to "disown" sometimes when I was at school. For most of the time I was her friend but sometimes I was horrible to her.I wanted to be with the popular crowd and she was just way too eccentric with her wacky hair, unusual clothes and a passion for Georgette Heyer novels (in a 1980's secondary modern school this really was a no no. The only approved reading "literature" was Patches magazine and My Guy)  . Thing is  her eccentricity is what  I absolutely loved about her . She was different and to this day I really admire that in someone. We were birds of a feather  but  back then as a  shallow teenager I didn't have the courage to stick up to the people who bullied me for being her friend. She's a really wonderful person though because she put up with my bitchiness and now I wish she lived round the corner from me and not in Essex because I'd really like to see more of her. It's funny how the people we pick as friends when we are kids or teenagers are sometimes the people we  still have has friends today.  My friend and I still share the stuff in common that we had then-books, writing, music and horse riding. We've changed as people but our interests have endured and that's what keeps any relationship fortified.

Now for my negative experiences of Facebook:

Well, asa woman who has come to the realisation that she will never have children it's really hard to see the "we're so fertile" family pics that are so often uploaded on there. I don't blame the people who do it though. If I had fruit of my loins I'd probably do it too along with  funny stories about what my kids did or said.

The other hard thing to swallow sometimes is the pics of people having the time of their lives in exotic  or exciting locations such as the Bahamas, Thailand or AyresRock when I'm stuck here in rainy Warrington too skint to go on holiday. The nearest I get to Ayres Rock is listening to Pam Ayres reciting poetry on Radio 4. WhatI'm trying to say is that Facebook sometimes gives you the impression that other people's lives are morefulfilled. But maybe this isn't a bad thing. Feeling a twinge of jealousy perhaps makes me think about reframing my own life and finding ways to make it happier.

However what really upset me recently, what really gave me a slap in the Facebook was a nasty email I recieved from someone I used to know.

Now on Facebook  you have to use the term "friend"  quite loosely at times. Sometimes I just add people on there that I have known but they're not friends in the true sense. However I am interested sufficiently enough in them to keep in touch with their news. I think everyone on there does this. Anyway recently I put a "friend" request in to a woman who we shall call Claire. Now this was probably in hindsight a pretty naaive thing to do becauseClaire was a platonic friend of my ex partner. Thing is it had been an amicable split from him about 4 years ago now so I didn't think anyone was taking sides. Now bear in mind that I had entertainedthis woman in my home, I had bought her birthday presents and I had encouraged her with her dream of writing a novel. In short I'd never been anything else but very pleasant to this woman. She got married recently and I was admiring her wedding pics on another friends site so I sent her a brief email and a friend request. It didn't mean that I wanted to be her best buddy, it just meant that I was interested enough in her to keep in touch with her news right? Anyway she sends this horrible email back saying "I never was your friend, I don't want to be your friend. Please do not contact me again" I was stunned. I felt like a stalker.And to this day I really don't know what I've done or said to deserve that. So I wrote back an ultra nice email to make her feel guilty saying  something like "Well I WAS going to compliment you on your lovely wedding pics. Never mind. Seems I liked you more than you liked me. I wish you well"

So all in all Facebook has raised me up and dragged me down. It's put me back in touch with some great people but it's also made me realise just who my friends and "friends" really are or who they really were.
Sep 30th

Under the Bugle-beaded Bonnet

By EmmaD

A few months ago, in the piece I did for the Independent's My Book of a Lifetime slot, I found myself saying, "Both my first novel, The Mathematics of Love, and now A Secret Alchemy, are about love, war, and the life of the spirit. At the most fundamental level, I sometimes think, what else is there to write about?" The rhetorical question was designed to get readers disagreeing, and of course it's only partly true of my own work, let alone anyone else's. There are a million other things to write about, from being conceived, to hunting a great white whale, to chasing a nose which grows legs and joins the Russian civil service.

But both the WIP, working title Kindred and Affinity, and the little squeaks of a new story, maybe novel-sized, which I can hear in the gaps, are probably also encompassed in that definition (prescription?) of 'love, war and the life of the spirit'. This evening - maybe it's the Autumn blues - I'm wondering if it's a bad thing to stick with these same basic preoccupations; or is it simply a bad thing that I've become aware that I do? After all, a novel by definition is novel: something new. And I'm also aware that the first two preoccupations, at least, are in some ways the easy option, the safe bet for writers who can't be bothered or aren't able to try harder and write fresher, and whose fiction is therefore dull, formulaic or actively meretricious: cheap in the aesthetic rather than the financial or literary sense. Am I doing the same? Goodness knows I don't sit and think 'war sells' or 'love makes readers cry', any more than I sat down and decided that The Mathematics of Love was going to be a cross between Possession and Birdsong (not least because I hadn't read either). But here are my characters - people, times and places - and the more specific themes I want to explore - say voyeurism, surrogate fathers, enclosed societies. I start to think about how and where to build those lives so as to give the themes a chance to grow and set shoots, to dramatise them in different shapes and times. And the answer to how and where so often seems to be love and war, under the eye of a God or some transcendant and immanent force which my characters - some of them, sometimes - seem to believe in.

And yet when I look at the work of any writer I admire, I see that they, too, return time and time again to the same fundamental meditations, even if each time what the novel dramatises is individual lives: contingent, particular and, yes, new. Granted, as a human being you can't entirely escape your particular preoccupations and tastes, but to turn the question on its head why, if you're driven to examine fundamental things, keep dressing them in new clothes?

I think the newness of a novel is not accidental, nor is it superficial, but equally the oldness is neither laziness nor tedium. Perhaps it's because only it's only new things which we look at properly, being lured by their novelty into examining each bugle-beaded bonnet or pagan tattoo hard enough to see the shapes beneath: the old, fundamental things which underlie them. In other words, perhaps the oldness only works if the newness does too. A small child asks for the same story over and over again not because they've forgotten what happens - heaven help you if you change a word - but because they want to re-live the fear of the wild things, and then the comfort of getting home: it's the new (re-)speaking of the words which conjures up the oldest feelings in the world.

For my own work, I don't know. Because what I most notice in excellent writing is the things I couldn't do myself, and someone else's ideas which I must work to apprehend, I associate excellent writing with ideas and things I don't do. In which case my writing - which by definition is ideas and things which I do do - is not excellent. But maybe I'm just having a wobble about how crude the basics - for which read oldnesses - of one's writing can look, because any broad generalisation, whether it's a blurb or an elevator pitch or a snide, dismissive review, can seem a reductio ad absurdum of the complex of ideas and feelings which is a novel. The whole novel, on the other hand, not reduced thus, gives those ideas and feelings human form, so that they can dwell among us humans, and we in them.

Sep 30th

Drunk: I Enjoyed It:

By Meta Tam When Hi Non
I actually drank, I took a sip of that elusive sensation letting myself fall into a realm of experience I've skipped over. The feeling of being drunk is quite a interesting one, I felt dizzy, my vision blurred, my balance drifted away into another world and my mind became less fluid--but against that I kept walking, everything I drank failed to dent me into some kind of Fooly Cooly submission. I didn't let it take away my control, I drank a whole glass of vodka--to the surprise of many--without feeling my body responding to the odd liquer.

I had a drink simply called the "Terminator", my sister and her boyfriend (they took me out to drink) said it would get me in twenty minutes at the pace I drank (half a glass within a minutes) and somehow, it didn't get me in the two hours until I was watching the news. My mind--even intoxicated--could take it without question, I watched the news drunk and got it. And even when I had two glasses of vodka--each one gone within a minutes to surprise of many at the rate I could drink--I could feel the sensation of it trying to get me, but I still watched the news on The Sun supporting the fucking Conservitives, I got it.

People were quite surprised at me taking achohol without a problem--for my first time--from some assuming I'd be a angry drunk. Quite the opposite. I was enjoying myself and completely overjoyed in the experience being quite easy to take--completely different from what I expected and quite nice I can choose when I experience being drunk. I like the feeling, but I prefer to feel it a month at a time--nothing more or less.

Sep 29th

2009 a year I will never forget

By Linng
Of all the things I've learnt this year, the most important things is be careful who you love - who you trust and most importantly who you lean on.

 I've had an amazing year with many joys, pleasure and unexpected hurts. But through it all I've learnt that I am strong enough and although it hurts I will make it through. I have met some interesting people and even though they are not apart of my life they have taught me something wonderful. That not matter how scary it is, love is an amazing feeling. 

This year was the first time I fell in love. The true love the love that you would give up your soul for. His name was Jean, and although he was older than me, he just seemed to understand me so well.  We met at a braai. From the beginning I knew he was bad news. He just had the look of a scolding hot plate. You know it's going to hurt you. But I still went for it, and man did hurt . We were never going to work out but there were moments when he was just perfect. Where he said the right things and did just everything to melt me to the bone. He had a way of just calming the over excited little girl in me with a simple touch.  I fell deeply in love and would have done anything for him and maybe that was the problem.  I set myself up to fail, I don't know but what I do know the most amazing thing happened towards the end of our relationship. I found out I was pregnant. Oh how happy and scared I was. I knew we weren't going to get back together because of all the fights, but it didn't matter. I was going to be a mother. I was going to have a baby boy. I don't know how I knew I just knew and when I went to the doctor to confirm everything I was a bundle of nerves.  I was scared of how I was going to look after a baby by myself but the excitement was greater.  The joys of feel that growth within you is like heaven or at least what I think heaven would feel like. 

But the joys were short lived a week later I found out that my baby had died. I felt like I had died too. The will to live was just sucked out of me. The only thing that was keeping me going was my work. I felt like my reason for living was gone and all I wanted to do was die with it. 

The day I had to have my baby removed was a week before my birthday and the most painful day of my life. The loniness and pain is somethings I pray no one ever goes through.

I don't regret any thing I've done or experienced. I believe they have taught me so much and changed me to. I never before been serious about the whole find someone and settle down. But now I see it in a new light. I can't wait to find that someone to share things with. Don't get me wrong I'm still a strong minded independent woman I just want to have that someone to share myself with. I now I'm not the perfect person but  I read a saying that "Love comes not from finding the perfect person but loving the imperfect person perfectly." So I know that somewhere out there is a person like that. A person who sees my flaws and loves me away and some I can do the same with. 

Friends I've learnt is a different story. Love them, trust them, but never lean too hard on them. They are not the pillar that you may think they are. I found that I believed they were stronger and would be able to help me climb out of the pit I fell into, but if anything they just were too scared. So now I've learnt to just love them and move on with my life. 

The pit is not far behind me, but the important thing is it is behind me. I fell, got hurt but got back up again. And although I pray that no ones goes threw an experience like that, I thank God for being there for me and teaching me how strong I really am. 
Sep 29th

Charlie Brooker: He's a Writing Deity:

By Meta Tam When Hi Non
We're a crazy kind of species to kill, love and hate all in one convenient priced package of ineivtable self-destruction, but that sounds like a Charlie Brooker type of quote you want everyone to hear--because it's true. Charlie Brooker is someone everyone should have a simple awareness of (I loved his material before anyone else realised his greatness) his presense, because he's a brillient mature version of Harry Hill, jabbing at a programme till your eyes bleed from sheer hillarity of how right he is.

But somehow, he isn't being hailed as anything beyond a simple writer with a acidic mouth of cycnical love. But he's truly awesome for his list of credits slowly growing with Screenwipe, Newswipe, Dead Set and You Have Been Watching? He's simply a master of his craft without the need to improve--being funny is his nature, but his nature to view the world with complete contempt without it appearing to be arogants is what makes him a deity. A true and beautful deity--he does have a charm about him.

Simply put it like this: Charlie Brooker should be given a title of some kind to sum up his already impressive of aura, of his  melted cycnical heart of Asgard, mixed in with a shot of adreline for good measure.
Sep 28th

ODST: Overly Demented Situation Transpiring:

By Meta Tam When Hi Non
I was bored enough to rearrange the meaning behind that title of space marine from Halo after watching a segment from Batman Beyond (that one where it's 2050 0r something and Bruce Wayne has handed on the title to Terry...somebody), which had the fantastically accented David Warner voicing a character inhabiting the body of his own daughter--crazily demented and could be seen as befitting the title of a Overly Demented Situation Transpiring.

The whole episode is good and how they revealed this revelation of ODST came across as though the character was actually revealing she was infact a he--the music, dialogue and character movement made it a completely ODST and exploitable sequence of awsomeness. But I enjoyed it more for David Warner (the villain from Tron, The Lobe from Freakazoid and Evil from Time Bandits) doing the voice--he's a cult type of actor that has Bruce Campbell, Ron Perlman and some others who should be a in lot more stuff, though that might deter from their quality.

Sep 28th

ODST: Overly Demented Situation Transpiring:

By Meta Tam When Hi Non
I was bored enough to rearrange the meaning behind that title of space marine from Halo after watching a segment from Batman Beyond (that one where it's 2050 0r something and Bruce Wayne has handed on the title to Terry...somebody), which had the fantastically accented David Warner voicing a character inhabiting the body of his own daughter--crazily demented and could be seen as befitting the title of a Overly Demented Situation Transpiring.

The whole episode is good and how they revealed this revelation of ODST came across as though the character was actually revealing she was infact a he--the music, dialogue and character movement made it a completely ODST and exploitable sequence of awsomeness. But I enjoyed it more for David Warner (the villain from Tron, The Lobe from Freakazoid and Evil from Time Bandits) doing the voice--he's a cult type of actor that has Bruce Campbell, Ron Perlman and some others who should be a in lot more stuff, though that might deter from their quality.

Sep 28th

Oh, What a Drama!

By Barb
I have some serious nasty goings on in my writing. Not only are there people being murdered by little old ladies when they least expect it, but period pieces tend to be a bit more physical. This is probably due to a shortage of attack weapons, such as guns and bombs, leaving the need for some form of melee. Yes, there were bows and arrows, but unless you have a skilled archer, you are left with stabbing, punching, slapping and hitting people over the head with things.

This gets interesting when you set about to show these things rather than tell. I find myself sitting in front of the keyboard trying to work out what my face would look like if I was about to belt someone with a length of lead pipe. Having never actually belted anyone with anything, it's difficult, and has begun to worry the cat.

So where can I find people committing murder and watch their expressions and body language? I started with shows such as Taggart and A Touch of Frost, but I have found out that you don't actually see a lot of crimes happen on those shows. You are in the point of view of the detectives, so you know and see as much as they do.

Hmmm, where could I see this acted out to the extreme, with a lot of drama and oomp to it? Of course...

Sep 27th

Junction 10: M6 and Home: Uncomplete story

By d m. chatwin

This is the beginning of a novel I am working on about a 19 year old's journey through family life, working on the road as a plumber, discovering a dark secret in the family that tear's them apart and a forbidden under age love that soon brings our character into exile. In the end the death of his Grandmother will force him to face the past and open wounds that had long since healed.

There's nothing much to read here but I will be updating as I go along, after a very long time I now have a clear idea of what I'm going to write and how I will approach it.



He got the call early in the morning, around 9am, he was still half asleep when his mom spoke the words;

Daniel your nan has died”

simple as that, nothing followed, just silence, he woke up straight away startled and confused;

what!?” he said loud and dazed,

your nan has died Daniel, last night, she's been ill for the past 3 months,but you wouldn't know because you haven't spoke to any of us in 2 years”

Daniel began to cry,

what did she die of?”

old I age I suppose, she was 87”

so I take it you two never made up” there was a slight pause, Daniel could hear slight mumbles as if his mom was crying,

no” she said forcing herself to sound normal, “I told you Daniel that what she did to me was unforgivable, and that's permanent.” he could almost picture the full stop when she'd finished speaking,

will you go to her funeral?”

I might, if he's going then no. After all I did for her and she chose him after all he did to us!”

mom don't start this, the reason I broke my ties was because of that constant shit” that was when she began to cry, in fits, in floods, in whatever manner she was sobbing her heart out,

I'm sorry Danny, I did start to get over it, put it all behind me and now this has all brought it back up. Why Danny? Why did you leave us?”

You know why mom, it was all starting to get to me, being caught in the middle, the constant bullshit that if I spoke to nan you would stop talking to me, this wasn't a permanent exile, I would have eventually picked up the phone, speaking of which how did you get this number?”

that's not for me to say, listen Daniel you know what had happened, with him, with nan, with the family, you knew it was a hard thing to get over and you what I can be like, I'm sorry for causing you the grief but you should have given it time, not turn your back on us!”

there was a silence, a thinking silence that ran through Daniel's head, he hadn't completely turned his back on the family, there were two who he e-mailed and occasionally phoned using a withheld number, his 12 year old brother Zach and his step-dad John, the reasons being that they both weren't involved in all the trouble and he loved them both dearly, they had agreed not to tell anyone about their little chin wags, and so far they had kept good to their word.

I'm sorry too mom, I have been thinking about you a lot, I always wonder if you're feeling well and what you're doing with your life but I just couldn't enter that world again...not yet”

I understand Danny. I do. How about you come home to your mommy? See us again, go to your nan's funeral and see her for the last time, she always loved you the most, she never said it but I could always tell.”

Daniel thought hard, it had been a long time since he went back and he had always loved his nan, he didn't want to turn his back on her death. His mind became awash with memories of her, of his mom, his brother and step-dad, he cried more and made his decision.

I will come back then, when's the funeral?”

4 days”

Right so that's a Thursday, I'll get the tickets booked tonight”

Ok then, will Jenny be joining you?”

Is it ok for her to come?”

Of course, I think you'll need some loving support”

Thanks mom, I'm gonna go now and give her a call, then I'll check out the ticket prices on the internet”

Ok then, John's going to transfer some money into your account for the tickets”

Are you sure?”

Yes, he told me he would if you said yes.”

Thank you”

No problem, speak to you soon Danny” before they left each other Daniel gave his mom his new phone number. It was going to be a huge step for him.

I love you Danny”

Love you too mom” and with that he hung up, his flat was dark still, all the time he was speaking he was glued to his bed, naked, vulnerable and alone. He cried more.

When he composed himself he phone Jenny, his love, he told her everything and as he expected she was upset, she agreed to accompany him back home, she agreed and he felt better. This was one trip he couldn't face alone. Not yet.

3 days went by slowly, Daniel had taken the time off work, he spent this time sleeping, dreaming, writing in his dream journal;


Entry 26:

The sea froze over, a single path of ice lay there and I walked across to America, my destination: Bangor, Maine. I arrived in Portland in short time and walked down this long street, I remember asking a kid for directions, he told me then ran away. In the distance I saw the sea and harbour, that was Bangor, it was the most beautiful thing I'd ever seen. This dream was so vivid, the scenery wasn't just pictures my mind had jumbled together to look like Maine, I actually thought I was there, my mind believed it. When I arrived in Bangor I could smell the fresh in the air. People were there, crowds, small, faces I could recognise from my life but one stood out and gleamed with golden light; my nan, fresh faced and staring at this place around us. I stood next to her and she slowly turned to look at me, she smiled and spoke only these words:

It's better than Australia.”

Then I woke.


He read a lot too, at that point in his life he was reading 'The Lovely Bones' by Alice Sebold, he had a lot of books, and many he hadn't read yet, his 'waiting list' he called it, when he finished one he'd move right on to the next.

Daniel asked Jenny not to come round in those 3 days, she understood and let him breath and mourn in his own way.

On the evening of the third day Jenny went to his apartment so they could leave early the next day, Daniel had booked a train bound for home, leaving at 9am. “

On the 4th day they made their move, the morning was cold and damp, a typical early January, they caught a taxi from the flat to the train station and the driver babbled on about the conditions of the weather and how the left over rain will freeze into ice and delay the trains;

watch yourselves and make sure you get your trains on time and have a safe journey!” he shouted to them when they got out and unloaded the luggage from the boot,

don't worry mate we will” Daniel said back trying to sound cheerful “and thank you”

no problem, take it easy” and with that the taxi drove off.

Daniel didn't get much sleep last night, he didn't dream, didn't doze, he lay on the bed for ages, not thinking, not even staring, his eyes were closed but nothing was switching him off. Eventually at some late hour he did slip into a sleep but it must have been late because this morning he was feeling the heavy burden of being tired.

At 9am they boarded their train and took their seats, it was going to be a 4 hour journey with a change in London, which meant navigating their way through the underground, Daniel didn't mind though, he had taken this journey before so al he and Jenny had to do was sit back and relax. An hour later they were both feeling drowsy, Jenny took a seat next to Danny and rested her head on his shoulder, almost instantly she was deep in council with her dreams, Daniel on the other hand remained awake just to make sure they didn't sleep past their stop. He was too comfortable and lazy to get his headphones or book out of his bag, instead he looked out the window into the world, his mind wondered and somewhere inside there was a click and creaking of a door being opened, memories came washing through and for the first time in 3 years he cast his mind back to what had happened, to everything that had happened.

Part One: Life In Transit

There was a picture laid out in front of me; the sun was setting on a cold motorway, colours of red, yellow and orange were thrown across a grey sky and I viewed this out of the window of a transit van. I was high then, I was always high on the drive home from work, it had been a long haul day in Manchester and the journey took us 2 hours there and roughly the same back home. I think The Killers were playing us their second album to us as my cousin did 70 on the unforgiving M6. I was an apprentice heating engineer working for my two cousins Kevin & Simon Willow who were self employed but sub-contracted to a local company: the North Central Heating Company (NCH) 'Always Keeping England Warm' was their slogan stamped on the side of the company vans which my cousin did not drive, he was the proud owner of an old Ford Transit, dirty white with only a small sign on each side 'The Sedgley Plumbers' with a nice big orange Corgi sign to make sure people knew they were legit. We were sent all over the country to supply people with new boilers, full heating systems, repairs etc. Sometimes we would leave at eight in the morning and not get back home until midnight and I was only being paid £80 a week; 'slave wage' my mom used to say.

That job was easy; a six radiator heating system in a semi-detached house in Manchester, there were only two people living there; a woman (roughly about 45 years old) and her 17 year old son. She treated me like a God in the two days we were there, always offering me cups of tea, making sure I was okay, she hardly paid attention to Kevin and Simon, at first it seemed like she was just mothering me, treating me like a son but when the job was done, just as we were about to get in the van she came running out of her door shouting my name;

Danny! Danny!” she was a large woman with long black hair, fake tan, red nails and wearing a red dress, she was striding across her drive and when she reached me (which seemed like a flash) she held out a large tin of Roses chocolates,

Thank you for doing such a good job” she stared deep into my eyes, there was a sudden moment where I felt that I should of hugged her, maybe kissed her, because that's what she looked like she was waiting for, instead I smiled and said,

Thank you very much, we'll eat these on the way home” and with that we got into the van and drove away and she was waving us off (or maybe waving me off). It was a very strange moment in my life that I still question when I think about it: did she actually have a soft spot for me or was it just a single mother looking after another 'son?' The chocolates she gave me had a new home; the Transit van where they would stay for long time after we had eaten them.

I think I got home around 6pm that night, Kevin always dropped off Simon first then took me home since we lived close by. My mom would always have dinner cooked for me, at 19 years old I couldn't really afford to move out (especially on 'slave wage') that night it was sausage casserole, my favourite, I ate heartily and had a bath to clean off the days hard work.

Seven o'clock in the morning next day I woke up and was ready by eight, but there was no sign of the van, typical I thought, he was late, Kevin was always late, he turned up at nine and I left the house ready for another adventure;

morning our kid” he shouted to me as I opened the van door,

morning man, late again!” I said in jest,

yeah man, was up late last night on the poker”

win anything?”

yeah 50 quid! Guess that'll pay for some weed, might get a Q later if we've gotta work far”

know where we're working today?”

nah man, it'll be another surprise journey for us” he started the engine and we drove off to pick up Simon. We arrived at the NCH office and reported to Raj the man who gave us the jobs,

alright lads” he said as we walked in,

alright Raj mate how'm ya doin?” Kevin asked ,

not too bad mate cheers”

know where we am today?”

yeah you're going to sunny Blackpool”

you're havin laugh ay ya?” Simon looked pissed off,

nah mate, you're doing a 5 rad system with a towel rack” he handed Simon the paperwork,

oh well at least we can go to the pleasure beach” Kevin said,

think you're about 15 minutes from the beach too mate”

alright then lets get stocked up and ship out, looks like we'll be staying the night lads” Kevin began to walk out, we said goodbye and drove to another building to pick up the boiler and radiators, we began our long two and a half hour journey to Blackpool.

Whenever we went on a long journey we always stopped at a service station to grab a cup of coffee, I took advantage of this to grab a scotch egg bar, a food that always fascinated me because instead of being round like any normal scotch egg, this one was made into a bar and it tasted so nice! That was always my service station snack along with a cup of coffee. We hit the road again with Fleetwood Mac playing us their Rumours album, Kevin was playing the drums to Go Your Own Way on the steering wheel while me and Simon sang along, it was a nice day on the motorway, with good weather and good music two and a half hours went quick, you almost forgot why you was making this long journey, the job wasn't important because here were three relatives singing, drinking coffee and smoking cigarettes.

Apart from that one stop we drove straight through into Blackpool, the tower appeared over the horizon and we could see the ocean and the sun reflecting off it, the sea glistened, beckoning us not to work but to have a good time on Blackpool's sandy beaches. Of course when we actually arrived in the main town we remembered that Blackpool wasn't such a great place, I'd only been there once as a child but from looking at the pictures it didn't look very nice. We pulled up in front of a semi-detached house and unloaded the van, the house was owned by a young couple who had 3 kids and a huge Alsation dog which scared me to death, when I was kid an Alsation nearly bit off my penis when I went to stroke it, I remember asking people if they owned it and every one of them said no, I was nearly castrated by a stray dog!

The house was filthy, I remember the carpets in the kids rooms covered in dog hairs, the whole house smelled of damp dog, it made me wretch but I still did my job, once the carpets were up and the floor boards were cut then the smell was replaced by sawdust which I found infinitely better.

We packed up at 6pm, we thought the longer we spent on that first day the less we would have to do on the second,

my mate knows a chap here who owns a B&B;, he booked us a room”

right then lets get there then hit the pleasure beach” Simon pointed to the road to signal 'lets go!' Kevin started the engine and we searched for this B&B;, we had the address but couldn't find the place for ages, turned out that we'd driven past it twice but because it was tucked stealthily away between two larger B&B;'s it made it harder to find. From the moment we all looked at it we knew it would be a dodgy place,

don't think we should eat breakfast here lads” Kevin whispered as we walked through the door, we all giggled.

We checked in and dropped our bags off in the room, before we hit the pleasure beach we went to the local Wetherspoons pub and had some dinner, the walk to the pleasure beach was a long one, but we were excited at the prospect of having a great night out but when we eventually reached the entrance it was closed, we groaned in disappointment, turned and walked back to the B&B;, at least we got some fresh air.

When we got back I went into the toilet and phoned Jenny, it was our 6 month anniversary, we spoke for about half an hour, I told her about how the job was going and she told me about her day, we wished each other love and said goodbye, when I got into the room Simon was watching the TV and Kevin was on his laptop,

how was the phone sex Dan?” Kevin said,

ha ha didn't have any man, not a sick pervert like you” and we laughed, I watched TV with Simon and Kevin played online poker, he won another £50, he was good at it but once he won he didn't stop and that usually resulted in him losing all his money.

Around midnight me and Simon started to settle down into bed, the room wasn't much to be desired, it was a bland 3 bed room with 2 wooden frame beds and one double bed, Simon and I took the wooden ones and Kevin took 'the gaffers bed' as he liked to call it. I turned the main light off and Kevin had the light from his laptop, he nudged me and said;

wanna go out for a quick smoke before you hit the hay”

yeah go on then” I got dressed and went to the van with Kevin, he rolled up a big joint using two large Rizlas, Simon didn't smoke weed so he stayed in the room. We both got lean and finished off the joint, we walked back into the room, Simon sniffed the air,

you two fuckin stink of that shit” he said as he turned to lie on his back, me and Kevin both giggled, he took his place back on 'the gaffers bed' playing on his poker and I lay on my bed and tried to sleep. Just as I was beginning to drop off I heard Kevin shout'

what the fuck was that!?” my eyes snapped open and I said,

what was what?”

I just saw something crawling on the mattress!”

what!? Really? What the hell was it?”

don't worry Dan he's just being paranoid from smoking too much Ganj” Simon said sleepily from his bed, it was about half one in the morning at this point.

I'm not being paranoid man I just saw something on the bed!” he turned on the bed side light and searched his bed, there was nothing, “I swear I saw something man”

go to sleep Kev, we've gotta get up early” Simon was looking at Kevin's bed,

fuck it, probably my eyes playing up anyway” he settled down, turned the light off and continued his poker game, when I looked at him I saw him moving his eyes away from the screen, glancing at the mattress, his hand moved quick,

got you you bastard” he said in victory, “told you there was something on here” he turned on the light again, “what the fuck is this? Looks like a little bug,” me and Simon got up to look at it,

hey that looks like it could be a bed bug man” Simon said looking at it, Kevin crushed the little critter on the bed side table.

Kevin went on the internet and searched 'bed bugs' into Google, he began to read out what their habits are, he turned off the lamp and then he saw them coming out from underneath the bed and crawling on the mattress, when he turned the lamp on they crawled away,

see, it says on here they only come out in the dark, now it also says to tell if you got bed bugs then you should lift up the mattress because they leave droppings” he got up and lifted the mattress up and they it was, a massive green splodge,

fuckin bed bug shit man!”

that's rank” I said, “shit man you really shouldn't sleep in that bed tonight, you'll be eaten alive” that's when me and Simon became paranoid about our beds,

fuck this lads let's go and book into a travelodge, I'm not sleeping here tonight, I'd rather sleep in the van than sleep in this shit hole.”

At two o'clock in the morning we packed our bags, put on our clothes and began to sneak out of the B&B;, we saw someone sitting in the main room, he/she looked at us as we walked out the door, we ran to the van, got in and Kevin started the engine,

right lets find a travelodge” Kevin began to drive.








Sep 27th

When I'm a Bitch and Infamous........

By Vin
.......and I write an autobiography, I will actually write an ALTER-biography.  I will alternate my own chapters with chapters written by other people.  BUT they won't just be written by people who like me, I will also commission chapters by people who don't like me.  I will promise not to edit anything they write and I won't look at their chapters until the book is published.

Autobiographies are often self-serving airbrushed versions of a person's life.  I wish someone would have the courage of admit to their dark side; we all have one.  There is only one autobiography I would reccommend; Unreliable Memoirs by Clive James.  It's the first volume, covering his childhood and it is one of the funniest books I have ever read.

The only other one I would reccommend - although it's not strictly an autobiography, more an account of a period in his life - is An Evil Cradling by Brian Keenan.

Beyond those, though, most other self-penned accounts are not very illuminating.  So that's why I would write an alter-biography.