The toast, I mean.

Offish sort of day, attempting to extricate myself from Holloway.

The first thing I do is strip the bed. That sort of seals it.

Indeterminate time, as the clocks went… back? last night. Though one thing I’ve learned over the last year is that time is contingent and variable. I simple accept that it’s "really" an hour earlier than I thougt it was.

I’ve woken up with a sharp sick headache, which develops somewhat.

I walk to Marks and Spencer and buy croissants. During the journey it seems like an extravagant waste of time and money, but getting home and putting them in the oven, I remember that food from M&S is very nice.

I eat the croissants and watch Spaced with the commentary.

I watch a lengthy documentary on the making of the Star Wars films, from the box set that Ben and Gerard gave me for my birthday.

I pack.

I vacuum the whole ground floor as well as the Record Room that I’ve been sitting at the computer in.

The doorbell rings once. If I had any chocolate or sweets I’d have eaten them myself by now.

Eventually I get a lift to my flat with my stuff.Hello there, broadband internet. I’ve missed you. Chat to Juan, then cyberchat to Pablo (the iSight works! Hurrah!). I go out and buy tuna fish, which I eat with toast. Is this technically cooking? The toast, I mean.

A little research. Also I buy a ticket back to Kiel, for Friday.

I think I’m doing pretty good

I get up at 8:30 and Sit, then go downstairs and make some coffee, popping round to the corner shop to get some pain au chocolat for breakfast, which I eat watching the rest of the commentary on Hable Con Ella. Then I do an awful lot of practising on the Epiphone semi, including work on Askesis, Intergalactic bass and both Forces (shouldn’t there be a third one somewhere?). I think I’m doing pretty good until I compare the metronome with actual performance tempos.

During the early afternoon, there’s a portrait photographer using rooms in the rest of the house, so I get out of the way and do more practising.

Later I take a crowded bus to Oxford Street in search of a DVD to watch. Virgin have a five-DVDs-for-?30 offer, but out of the available selection I can’t find five I’d like to watch. I wander down to HMV and buy Spaced series one, and Bowling For Columbine. Then another absurdly crowded bus back to Holloway. Actually, no, back to somewhere quite near Holloway, as I get off the bus a bit early.

On both trips I got to see the wonderful expressionless face that people make when they realise that they should be giving up their seat to old people or moving further down the bus to let more people on. An I’m-not-a-bad-person-I-just-haven’t-noticed-this-manifest-need expression. I’m sure I’ve done it myself. One old lady procures a seat for her husband by saying he’s 85 years old. As if it would have been less pressing if he’d been, say, 82.

Spaced has aged well – I’m really surprised to see that it’s five years old. Perhaps I can find series two somewhere. And I still have the commentaries on this disk to go.

It was probably the opportunity of a lifetime.

Up at 8:30, then sit, then downstairs to drink coffee, then back upstairs to shower and do work work. This is something that I did before, about two months ago, but somehow didn’t bring it with me from Kiel, although I have all the bits it’s made out of. So I’m beginning again. I do most of the necessary cut-outs and then leave for Scholastic to collect other things that I’ll need to complete the job. Whenever someone from that company tries to contact me I’m either in the departure lounge at an airport or (more recently) in a remote part of South America. Perhaps they’ve got the wrong idea of my lifestyle. Perhaps they have the right idea, I don’t know.

On the way back I stop at the local pawn shop to see if there are any bargains (not that I should really be looking for bargains); and the supermarket to get ingredients for lunch. Then I do a bit more work and make lunch, which includes rice. The rice sends me off to sleep (I’d forgotten this, but it usually does. I don’t know why) for an hour. Grr. Then back to the work again.

The phone rings several times during the day. On most occasions, it’s silent – this is most likely a computer from a telesales company calling, apparantly. Quite freaky the first time it happens, but infinitely preferable to an actual telesales caller. In the evening, however, there’s a call from what appears to be a garrulous child, who starts by appearing to do some kind of prank call and then (getting no response) degenerating into abuse. I just stand there and hold the phone, as it’s his phone bill after all. There’s a point where he says "No, he’s there, I can hear noises in the background", but on the whole I can’t understand a word he’s saying, which probably contradicts the whole prank call thing. He seems to think he’s very funny, but then he would. The phone rings again a few minutes later, but I can’t be bothered. It was probably the opportunity of a lifetime.

Later I watch X-Men 2 with the commentary and Hable Con Ella without. Almod?var films always make me wonder why I don’t watch more of them. Great score.

As I write, the (normally flaky) dialup has decided not to play at all. I’ll try it one more time, and if it doesn’t work I’ll try again tomorrow. Then bed.

where I thought I was going to be

Very difficult getting to sleep last night, dreadful insomnia. I get up at 8:30 and sit. Then go downstairs and have coffee. An email I received last night suggested to me that it might be a good idea if I stayed to receive a call I’ve been waiting for, however when I call GC HQ, it appears that I misunderstood. There was a problem with the internet connection. When I do finally connect, it I discover that the suggestion is (quite forcibly) contradicted.

It’s really too late to leave for the airport – I could make it, but not effectively, as my stuff is still spread between the two houses, as I thought I’d be visiting them both before I left.

I decide to make the best of it, and call around to see if it’s possible to do some of the things I’d have regretted not having done if I’d left as planned. And perhaps that call will come through, who knows, eh?

In the afternoon, I go to the bank and transfer money to the GC account and visit my father, picking up my birthday present while I’m there. When I’m in the queue at the bank I get a call from an employer asking where I am (the last time he spoke to me, I was in the queue at Stansted airport). I need to do work that must be on the hard disk I left in Kiel, which is where I thought I was going to be, but…

Back to the house. I try out my birthday present (a webcam – it works, but with the dialup I’m on there’s not really a web there to cam to) and watch X-Men 2. I have an accumulation of Claremont/Byrne X-Men comics from the late 70s, somewhere or other. I was disappointed to discover, a few years ago, that they’re not quite the literary high my fourteen-year-old self remembers them to be.

00:04 now. Perhaps I can get to bed…

Not the dream. Yes, I was confused, too.

I have a lie-in, as it might be my last opportunity for a while. I dream that I’m on a course and have overslept. I get up (in the dream); but can’t open my eyes. This is of course, because I’m still asleep. In real life. Not the dream. Yes, I was confused, too.

Glorious morning skies over Holloway, again.

So I have quite a slow day. It has a fair amount of practising in it, on my NST-strung Epiphone semi, and some reading. I also vacuum-clean the stairs and am struck by a Bright Idea.

I go to Marks and Spencer’s to get food, which I cook and eat, then realise that I’ve not left myself with enough time to get to the gig. Shower, dress and dash off to Finsbury Park tube. This is, for reasons too dreary to explain a very difficult station to get into. Then I get off at Russell Square tube and can’t find the Drill Hall. I arrive just as they’ve given up hope. Quick sound check then off. I hang around outside with Phil while the first half is on. There is a Green Room, but as it’s on the other side of the building through two locked doors, it’s hardly worth bothering with.

While the first half is on, I agree with Phil to use his guitar (a 12-string) for all the numbers I play guitar on, rather than have two guitars on stage. When it comes to it, though, this makes my job a lot more difficult. It all goes well, though. It’s a good little venue. I’ve played it a few times before, mostly with Phil, once as me. I could have been on tonight, actually, but chickened out of it.

Stay in the bar until 11:00. One of Phil’s songs comes back to haunt (or rather taunt) him, then return to Holloway. My plans are thrown into disarray. I write a long email and then this.

To bed at 2:00.

In other news, I spent a lot of the day feeling very sad, as John Peel has died.

Very London.

Up at 7:00, tai chi and sitting. The sun rises during the sitting, which is a very impressive effect, especially as it’s doing it over the rooftops of Holloway. Very London. The sky is making up its mind as to whether it’s going to be cloudy or blue today. I watch the planes coming in to land at Heathrow.

Shower, then downstairs. Ben’s already checking out what we recorded yesterday. Coffee and bread with manjar for breakfast, then when Gerard arrives I set off for Elephant and Castle, where I say hello to Juan and his mother and pick up the bass, bass amp and acoustic guitar, then set off for Wandsworth and the Jeays rehearsal. As much a catching-up session as a rehearsal. Familiarising myself with the songs, which I play a lot less often now, and so I need to remind myself how they go. Interesting, the way that Dave’s house has changed over the last couple of years. We rehearse until just after two, then Phil gives me a lift to Clapham Junction, and I get a tube back to E&C with the amp, which I drop off at the flat, before returning to Holloway.

When I get back, B&G have completed a song we began at the last batch of sessions (which was, at that time, a bare guitar riff in 7/8) and almost completed a new one, which I drop a guitar part and very minimal guitar solo onto. Fades and guitar solos. What are CA coming to?

Rough mixes and completing the session.

B&G leave for their respective homes and I spend the evening ducking onto the internet occasionally (I’m on Ben’s dial-up connection, and have to remind myself that I can’t just connect when I feel like it); listening to CDs and watch Shaun of the Dead with yet another commentary.

I only went out for the milk

Up at 8:00. Juan’s getting the flat ready for his mum’s arrival, apart from the sofa, which I’m still occupying. I pack the suitcase and begin to sort things out. Actually there’s some drinking coffee and vegetating there, too.

Juan sets off for Heathrow. Several minutes later there’s a call from (I think) his mother, saying (I think) that the plane’s been delayed. I attempt to speak in very very bad Spanish. It’s a shame.

I get a lift with my father, taking the suitcase, the backpack, the semiacoustic, the Godin and the VG up to Ben’s. I let myself in. There’s a photographic session going on in the lounge so I slink upstairs to get out of their way and try to remain as invisible as I can. I crash out somewhat. When the coast is clear I go and get milk and chocolate. And a DVD of Shaun of the Dead. This last is vaguely mystifying, as I only went out for the milk, so even the chocolate was somewhat surplus to requirements.

I spend a long while playing with the synths on Ben’s mac, then drink tea and watch the DVD. It’s very good. The rest of the evening is taken up with the film, the extras, the commentaries and takeaway food.

Soon to bed, I think.

One does what one can.

Again I don’t really get up. Today I’m impatient with my body or whatever it is that gives in so easily – the jetlag excuse doesn’t hold up any more. Usual morning preparations, then Juan goes off to assist with some mixing and I stay behind to… dither again, and read. And play guitar, so not a total loss.

When Juan comes back I’ve still not showered (so full-on Slob Mode); and I do so. Then we have lunch, followed by tortillas with manjar. Then we play guitar for a while, me on the Godin/VG, Juan on the Ovation. I seem not to have too much trouble thinking of stuff, but a lot of trouble remembering it, possibly because I was jamming and not fully On.

Juan goes off to his rehearsal and I stay behind to do the useful (washing, ironing, tai chi) and the not-terribly-useful. And playing guitar, which is somewhere in between. I’m ironing when he comes back from the rehearsal.

I go out to get takeaway food. They guy who runs the kebab shop around the corner is going quietly mad. Or loquaciously mad, perhaps. He gets me to write "Help Wanted: Apply Within" posters for him. I try to add value by putting serifs on the top line. One does what one can.

Eating, then watching the Soderbergh Solaris. It’s definitely shorter than the Tarkovsky, that’s for sure.

Soon to bed. Moving around tomorrow.

So, anonymous immortality of a kind.

I found it difficult to get to sleep last night, and I found it difficult to get up today. The day was, consequently, jumbled and incoherent. The morning was a lot of dither, and after Juan went off to college, I plug the VG88 in and play for a while in NST, then go out and pay cheques into the bank (hurrah); before going to Watkins again. I’m obviously looking for something, but I haven’t told myself what it is. I buy a bunch of second-hand books, then dither in Watkins Esoteric Centre for a while (I’m tempted to buy some crystals because they’re nice, especially obsidian and turquoise, but their meditation cushions are sorely overpriced, I feel); then go up to Blackwells on Charing Cross Road where I buy some new books on subjects as varied as Speed Reading, Spanish Grammar and NLP. I also buy a copy of A Thousand Plateaux, which has now crossed over into the mainstream and is available with a groovy cover.

I meet Ben in the Borders near Oxford Circus tube, we drink coffee, then look around the shop. On a shelf near the doorway the copies of Yellow Sub are stacked right next to the copies of Maisy’s Presents. So, anonymous immortality of a kind. Then up to Holloway Road, where Ben introduces me to the complexities of getting into his house. I leave most of the books on his table, then we go and eat pizza, then I return home.

I eat dulce de leche on cream crackers and, yes, dither some more.

apparantly, On

The alarm goes at 7:00, I get up and do Tai Chi exercises, then realise that I’ve half an hour intil 8:00 which is when we agreed to do the sitting. I’ll need to think this out better tomorrow. The sitting is the solid. Yellow House is, apparantly, On.

Shower, then coffee and toast with Juan, then off to Walker for a special one-day appearance to deal with the Lucy font. Difficult negotiation, as two people need the font for quite different reasons with quite different demands. I suggest making two fonts. We’ll see, as the person whose ultimate decision it is is away until next week, when I’ll be thigh-deep in music, I hope.

The hoo-ing and ha-ing gives me a lot of opportunities to dig into The Intelligent Enneagram. I’m impressed – he ties together so much stuff that I’m interested in, and is very clear and straightforward.

Arrange my move up to Holloway at the weekend, with Ben.

Back at 7:30, Juan cooks dinner. A long chat, then I change the strings on the Godin to my patent electric light NST set, and I change the Epiphone semi to a standard NST set. They both feel really good, the Epiphone particularly. Short jam with Juan. We agree a longer session. Hmm, hopefully I’ll do a lot of playing in the next few days.