Friday, April 29

Trying to be helpful

On 4/29/05 at 18.09 Disappointed of West Egg wrote:

Hello again,

I trust you understand I could not leave things as they were. I have
therefore taken the trouble of setting the pair of you up with
individual email addresses, and am sending you your passwords in a
separate email.

The email addresses are as follows:

jamesreeves2005@yahoo.co.uk
paulareeves2005@yahoo.co.uk

I do hope this will be to your satisfaction and that from now on, the
pair of you will recognise you are individuals and do not have to do
everything together.

Regards,

Disappointed


On 4/29/05 at 18.21 JamesPaula Reeves wrote:

You again?
You’re fucking tiresome. Don’t you have anything better to do with your time?
Question: Am I telling you what you should do?
Answer: No.
Question: Why?
Answer: Because I don’t give a shit about you.


On 4/29/05 at 18.25 Disappointed of West Egg wrote:

What is your problem?


On 4/29/05 at 18.28 JamesPaula Reeves wrote:

You. You are my problem.


On 4/29/05 at 18.30 Disappointed of West Egg wrote:

I'm trying to help you. It's for your own good.


On 4/29/05 at 18.35 JamesPaula Reeves wrote:

You're a cock.


On 4/29/05 at 18.39 Disappointed of West Egg wrote:
At least I have my own email address.

© Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

Skateboard speaks

  • Skateboard on the Sun


  • All you idiots who go mad soon as there is a bit of sunshine need to read this. Then hang your heads in shame. You know who you are.

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    Overuse of the F-Word

    On 4/29/05 at 11.40 Disappointed of West Egg wrote:

    Dear Couple,

    It has come to my attention that not only are you a couple, but you
    also share the same email address. I implore you to pull away from
    this sickly and ghastly venture and regain your individuality before it is too late.

    I await your response with interest.

    Regards,

    Disappointed of West Egg


    On 4/29/05 at 11.53 JamesPaula Reeves wrote:

    Who is this?


    On 4/29/05 at 12.04 Disappointed of West Egg wrote:

    I'm someone who wants you to be an individual again. Have you ever been that ill that you'd forgotten what it was like to go out and feel the sun in your face? Well if you have, that's what sharing an email address is like. Get your own email. Feel the sun on your face once more. Go on. Do it now, and email me back from your own address.

    Disappointed


    On 4/29/05 at 12.07 JamesPaula Reeves wrote:

    Fuck off.


    On 4/29/05 at 12.09 Disappointed of West Egg wrote:

    Are you not ashamed of yourselves?


    On 4/29/05 at 12.13 JamesPaula Reeves wrote:

    Last time Egg man/thing, whatever you are.
    Fuck off.


    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    A Warning to Couples

    I know it's pretty usual for couples to have things such as joint bank accounts, I have no real issue with that. But I have started to notice a trend recently where couples are now actually sharing email addresses. For instance, Steve dates Cathy, therefore their email address is stevecathy@provider.com. Now how wanky is that?

    Must these people be joined at the hip in everything they do? From now on, I'm making it clear. Any emails I receive from such people will go straight into my Deleted Items folder. Do not suck me into your sugary world. And if you are one of these people, go hang your head in shame.

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    Thursday, April 28

    King of the Cuffs


    Above: My dad on the right, winner of the world's biggest shirt cuffs three consecutive years, 1960-61-62. It's a record he still holds.

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    Tears Roll Down - Part 2

    "Look, I'll take you out if you don't go to see Tears For Fears on Monday night. But it won't be a date."
    "It's not a date?"
    "Of course not. You're my ex," I replied.
    "Right."
    "Let's be clear about this," I continued. "It's not a date. But I'll take you out. Somewhere nice."
    "But you don't like me," said the ex over the phone.
    "I know."
    "You hate me."
    She was always prone to exagerrating. "That's a bit strong."
    "You called me a cunt the last time we saw each other."
    "That is true," I said, painfully remembering the incident inside Tottenham Court Road's Heal's branch some five years ago.
    "But despite that, you'll take me out?"
    "Time is a great healer," I said softly.
    "You cheeky bastard. I was the one who was called a cunt and you're talking about time being a great healer."
    "Hey, it took me a long time to get over the anger that prompted that uncharacteristic outburst."
    "I need to think about this," she said.
    "You think about it. But I'll need an answer soon. And if you're not going to the concert, I'll need guarantees. If I even see someone that so much as looks like you on Monday night, the deal's off."
    "I'll get back to you, Dis'. I need to go now. Doing breakfast with a friend in Crouch End."
    She was always a bit of a ponce.
    "Saturday. I need your answer by Saturday." By now I was posing with my hands on my hips like David Caurso, listening to her voice coming through via the speaker phone.
    "I'll speak to you then," she said. "See ya."

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    Wednesday, April 27

    Tears Roll Down

    Fifteen years I've waited to see Tears For Fears perform together. Fifteen years...

    Five minutes ago I find out my ex is going to see them on the same night. She didn't even like Tears For Fears when we were together.

    "I got to like them," she protests.
    "How? You never let me play their albums all the way through."
    "What's the beef, Disappointed? There'll be loads of people there. We won't even see each other probably." Her grammar was always shit.
    "That's not the point. I'll know you're there. If I know you're there, I won't be able to enjoy myself. This is a big night for me."
    "Chill out."
    "Please don't come out with that poncy media speak, you know I hate that. In fact, that might have been my my main reason for leaving you."
    "Oh, so you finally admit it was you who left me."
    "I don't admit anything." I paused for a moment. "Look, do you have to go?"
    "I'm going."
    "How much do you want for the ticket?"
    "Disappointed..."
    "I'll give you fifty for it. Paypal. Do you accept paypal?"
    She laughed. "Forget it. I quite like their new stuff. Maybe I'll see you there. I'm in the third row, and I've got an invite to the after show party," she said. "What do you think about that then matey?...Hello...hello..."

    I looked at the receiver as if I expected it to give me an answer as to why my head was starting to hurt again. And then I put it down and curled up into a ball.

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    Sensitive

    I sat down next to a chinese girl in this cafe yesterday. As I switched on my laptop, I noticed she was writing a letter, red ink on green paper, in what looked like chinese.
    "Is that for real?" I asked.
    There was no smile. "Yes."
    "What does it say?"
    "That's private." She put her hand over the sheet of paper. I don't know why. It wasn't like I understood what she was writing.
    I punched in my password, before turning to the girl again. "Why is it that chinese guys have such bad hair?"
    She looked at me blankly.
    "I mean, they all look like something out of a cartoon, their hair's piss poor, and it always sticks up. They can't even grow sideburns."
    She got her stuff together and moved over to another table. "Chinese women are a bit sensitive," I thought to myself.

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    Slow Walking Lanes for Amorous Couples

    Never mind cycle lanes. I think they should have special lanes for slow walking couples. What is that shit women do where they stick their hand in your back pocket when you're walking together? What's that all about? I can't work out whether it's affection or they're in training to join Customs & Excise. Either way, have you tried walking when they do that? It's not easy.

    I want to pull these slow-walking amorous couples to one side and say to the girls, "You wanna do that hands in your feller's back pocket nonsense, get in the lane darling."

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    Monday, April 25

    Smart money goes on the kid

    "Why is my jacket no longer good enough?"
    "It smells," she said.
    "You smell," I replied.
    "Grow up Disappointed. You spend your afternoons in that smoky cafe and your jacket stinks."
    "I only had it dry cleaned last week."
    "It smells."
    "It was all right when you first met me, eh? See, that's what women are like. You do my bloody head in. You come into guys' lives and slowly but surely you try to change everything about them. You lure us in like sirens to the rocks."
    "Not the sirens analogy again? Please, I can't bear it."
    "Blow jobs first few weeks, give the impression that's what it's always going to be like. Compliment their wardrobe until you're sure you got your man, and then boom, that's it. Start on the changes."
    She was unmoved. "And you need a hair cut."
    "Anything else I need to change?"
    The girlfriend continued to look down at her nails which she was filing.
    "I should really have gone for an older bloke. They know how to treat women well."
    "They're also closer to death," I said.
    "You could do with being told you have a few months to live. Might teach you to appreciate life a bit more."
    "Me being closer to death is going to help me appreciate life a bit more?"
    She nodded.
    "Don't think I'm gonna be like Roy Castle darling, all heroic and running marathons to raise money to research and raise awareness of whatever's going to kill me. Fuck that nonsense. I will wallow in self pity. I'll cry morning, noon and night. If there's kids involved, no matter how young they are, they're going to know about it."
    "You're so immature," she said. "And don't think I didn't hear you on the phone to your mate earlier talking about who'd win a fight between a Down Syndrome child and a mad chimp."
    "My money's on the kid," I said.
    "I don't want to know."
    "I once had my mate's Down Syndrome brother threaten to throw me out of a first floor window just 'cos I smiled at him. He was only 4 at the time, but I don't doubt he could have done it. And he punched out a donkey at Blackpool one time 'cos it dumped on his shoes."
    "Get that jacket out of the room. Now."

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    It's such a bore

    Holy fucking Moses!
    I had no idea depression could be this bad. I obviously knew from past experience it's not a good thing, but no one ever tells you how boring it can be.
    If I had a garden, I think I'd start throwing stuff over the neighbour's fence, just to get some excitement into my life.
    I haven't really thought about what kind of stuff I'd throw. Maybe bits of stationery, some furniture, the odd porn mag, bits of torn paper with swear words written on them, like cunt, fuck, motherfucker, whore, wanker, fanny, you get the gist. That kind of thing.

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    How the hell do people hang themselves? Is it because I never went to scouts and was always crap with knots that I have no idea how to do a hangman's noose?

    Every summer, there's always a kid who hangs himself because he only got ten A Levels, and I think, "How the fuck does he know how to hang himself? He's only 16." It's the same when I read about a prisoner finishing themselves off by tying a bedsheet to the light fixings. Amazing stuff. I wouldn't know where to begin.

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    Sunday, April 24

    Pub Lunch Ordeal

    Went for a pub lunch. The girlfriend refused to drop me off to get my Sunday papers first. I think she was being deliberately malicious. We had to actually talk to eachother over lunch, which I'm sure was her intention. Once I realised this was the reality of the situation, I made a mental short list in the car of subjects to talk about that would appeal to her rather than myself.

    1] The Beckhams
    2] Celebrities
    3] Nail varnish
    4] Kids
    5] Living in the countryside

    Under no circumstances would I talk about great books I have read, football or the dwarf with the bright pink hair I saw the other day at Warren Street Station [if you're that small, surely the last thing you do is draw attention to yourself?].

    "Just let it go," she said tucking into the last bit of her lukewarm cheese and onion quiche.
    "All I'm saying is if you order the roast beef, you get the yorkshire pudding. If you ask for the lamb, you don't. Don't you find that strange?"
    "Actually, I don't care."
    "...I mean, who decides that? You get the same amount of slices of meat with both, same amount of potatoes and vegatables, but one gets the yorkshire pudding, the other doesn't."
    She sighed.

    The barman came over to take our plates.
    "Would you like to look at our dessert menu?"
    "Can we just have the bill please," asked the girlfriend?
    "I fancy an apple pie actually."
    "We'll have the bill please," the girlfriend said again, this time through gritted teeth.

    I handed over my card. The barman handed me the chip and pin machine and I tapped in my pin.
    ""What's going on with the lamb?" I asked.
    "How do you mean?"
    "Well, how come you don't get a yorkshire pudding with the lamb?"
    "I don't know," he replied, handing me my card back.
    "You don't find that strange?"
    "It's not something I've given a lot of though to really."
    "Well you work here,"I continued. "And you've never thought to ask?"
    "No."
    "Don't you want to know why this happens?"
    "Look, I just work here."
    "You don't even try to pretend you care."
    "I never said I don't care."
    "Oh, so you do care?"
    "Look, maybe I can ask for next time?"
    "You'd do that?"
    "Yes."
    "'Cos it's really troubling me. I mean, on what basis is it decided that if you order the lamb, you don't get a yorkshire pudding? I mean what's going on there?"
    I heard a car starting outside.
    "Er, I think your girlfriend's just gone off without you," said the barman, motioning with his head towards the window.
    Indeed she had.
    I turned back to the barman. "Is there anywhere I can get a paper round here?"

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    The clever one watches


    The clever one is watching.

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    In the Land of the D's

    Today I am in the land of the D's.
    I am one big giant D.

    I am:

    Dismayed
    Depressed
    Difficult
    Detached
    Displeased
    Displaced
    Despondent
    Disillusioned
    Disaffected
    Dissatisfied
    Disconnected
    Disconsolate
    Discontented
    Disinclined
    Disinterested
    Disdainful
    Sad - I know that's not a D, but I don't really care anymore.
    And of course, Disappointed.

    I am all of these things.

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    Saturday, April 23

    The flicking makes sense

    An hour after getting in, I realised I hadn't even noticed the girlfriend's new hair. Suddenly, her flicking her hair every few seconds started to make sense.

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    Thursday, April 21

    The Box

    “Would you rather I didn’t put the trainers back in their box?” I asked, having just taken off my Adidas Stan Smith.
    “Well it would help if we could clear some boxes from under the bed,” replied the girlfriend.
    “Okay, but will you promise me you won’t put anything on top of them, or let them get covered in dust?”
    She gave me that weary look with which I am now familiar. She reached under the bed, brought the adidas box out and removed the lid, before sliding the box across the floor to me, the weary expression now giving way to what I can only describe as the most contemptuous look I have seen in a long, long time.

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    Old Man in Jeans

    The old man was taking forever to cross the road. I gritted my teeth. The girlfriend noticed.
    "I know you'd rather I didn't let him cross."
    "I'm gonna miss my train."
    "What if that was your mum or dad?" She asked.
    "Here we go. That guy doesn't cross the road now, the next car lets him go and all he has to do is wait ten seconds. I miss my train now and that leaves me running half an hour late."
    "He's old."
    "I don't care. Honk him, or whatever you call that beeping thing."
    "I'm not honking him." She paused. "You'll be old one day."
    "I won't be wearing jeans when I'm that age though. I think the cut off point for jeans should be 55. Blokes older than that don't look quite right in jeans...oh fuck me, is he having a laugh? It's never taken that long to cross a road."
    "So what are you gonna wear when you're 55?"
    "I don't know. There aren't many options. I'll probably have to switch to farahs, or suits."
    "Will it be an overnight thing, or a gradual change?" She asked.
    "Are you a fucking journalist now?"
    "I'm just asking."
    "This is like a bloody interview."
    "You're so tetchy these days."
    There was silence. The old man edged closer to the other side of the road.
    "I'll probably do it gradually," I said. "And I won't wait till I'm 55. I'll start wearing the farahs a couple of times a week soon as I hit, say 53."
    "That's very specific."
    "Are details a bad thing?"
    "No," she replied.
    "No, come on. That look on your face seems to suggest details are a bad thing."
    "Sometimes I wonder if you've got Aspergers syndrome."
    "Oh great." I slammed the dashboard with my hand. "This clown takes half a day to cross the road and before he makes it to the other side you're diagnosing me with Aspergers Syndrome."
    "Calm down."
    "I can imagine what kind of journalist you'd be. Soon as someone gives you a straight answer you'll be pinning various syndromes on them."
    My leg was starting to twitch. I rolled down my window. "Mate, come on," I shouted.
    "Don't," said the girlfriend.
    The old man just ignored me. He finally crossed, turned and raised his hand to the girlfriend in gratitude. She smiled at him.
    "I thought the jeans looked okay on him," she said.
    "Just get me to the station please."

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    Wednesday, April 20

    The Nearly Wife

    She tossed me the car keys.
    “Park the car.” She didn’t even look at me. To watch us, you’d have thought I was the house boy, not the boyfriend.

    I was thousands of miles away from home, feeling lousy and still hadn’t quite weaned myself off the Prozac. The war was just weeks away and still the people of Bahrain weren’t convinced, despite the heavy military presence in the Gulf state, that war was unavoidable. And spiteful bastard that I was becoming, I was glad that the region was going to go up in flames because try as hard as I did, I really didn’t like what I found there.

    I’d gone there to marry the girl. Though I wasn’t quite sure when that was happening. We were barely talking to one another by now. On the way here we’d passed some plush hotel and it was then that she broke the silence to tell me that our wedding reception would have been held there. Would have been. I guessed that meant we were no longer getting married.

    By the end of the first week, I’d had enough of her moods and had started sleeping on the sofa. I’d gone to a lot of trouble getting there, and had basically made myself homeless back in London, as I didn’t plan on going back. I’d even gone to the trouble of working out for eighteen months, two hours every night, as I knew from my time at college that she was shallow enough to go for those kinds of blokes. So there I was, me and my new well-toned body sleeping on my own, when ironically, during my days out of shape, I’d been balling for England.

    I held the keys in my hand. She grabbed her bag from inside the car and slammed the door shut.
    “I don’t know how long I’ll be.”
    ”All right,” I said, still looking at the set of keys, trying to figure out how I was going to find my way out of this one.
    She made to go into the doctors. Not surprisingly, I’d been kept out of the loop with this as well. I had no idea why she was going to the docs. She wouldn’t tell me, but as possible husband to be I thought I ought to be there to offer my support for whatever might be wrong with her.
    “You do know how to drive, don’t you,” She said sneeringly.
    “I’ll get the car parked,” I replied, pleased I still hadn’t lied to her.

    I don’t know if I’d ever told her I couldn’t drive. It was one of those rare occasions when I’m sure I hadn’t lied. I’ve lied my way through life you see. Dad always told me there was nothing wrong with lying in certain situations if it got you somewhere. My problem is I couldn’t stop lying. Even when there was no reason to lie, I lied and nothing was gained. Dad preached that you needed to remember your lies if you were to ensure you never got found out.

    “It’s a big step for someone to come out and call you a liar, son” he often told me. “They might know you’re lying, and they might know you know they know you’re lying, but if they call you a liar, that relationship, whether it be lover, boss-employee, friend, is irreparably damaged.” Having put his theory to the test countless times in my hundred odd jobs, I have to say he was right.

    However, I’d made a decision in Barcelona that if this was the girl I was going to marry, then I ought not to lie to her. I had enough secrets as it was, but I figured I couldn’t do anything about my past. Talk about skeletons in the cupboard, with me you’re looking at a major archaeological dig.

    I think this girl assumed that, like all normal men, I could drive. We’d met up in Barcelona just before Christmas, getting to know each other all over again after the disaster that was our time together in the Seychelles in the summer of 2000. Without a car, Barcelona saw us go everywhere together by train and bus, and in her book, I was still, just about, a man.

    But Bahrain was different. It was her home. She had her car. And suddenly, as a man sitting in the front passenger seat of a car being driven by a woman, in the Gulf of all places, I wasn’t looking too manly. I tried to style things out by rolling down my window and hanging my hand out of the car, occasionally making bizarre, completely improvised hand signals to other drivers. On the odd occasion when we picked up her dad, the girl would sit in the back and her dad would take the steering wheel.

    ”You drive D?” He asked me one afternoon.
    ”Been a while, been a while.” I said, not sure if the way I phrased this constituted a lie, but figuring that if it did, it was only her dad, and it didn’t matter.

    * * *

    She’d been gone twenty minutes, having double parked in the car park as she was running late for her appointment. Looking back, perhaps she suspected all along I couldn’t drive and in double parking, had been deliberately malicious. She had probably told her friends that if she could prove conclusively that I couldn’t drive, she would call the wedding off for good.

    I still hadn’t managed to flag anyone down to park the car and was worried the wife to possibly be would come out any minute and wonder what the fuck I was doing. I decided on the manly pose of standing behind the open driver’s door, and as far as anyone was concerned, I was a driver. I opened the bonnet a couple of times, peered inside and pretended to be fiddling about with something.

    “Hey American, you have a problem with your car.”

    Again, I’d been mistaken for an American. I hated that. If I wasn’t mistaken for a yank, I was mistaken for a Jew on the account of my broken nose, and I was tired of explaining to locals where I was from. But I needed this guy.

    “Listen bruv’, I need a favour.”

    “Is it automatic or manual?”

    “Does it matter? You said you could drive?”

    “American, I’m doing you a favour,” said Osman, suddenly showing me he could lose his rag too. “There is no reason for you to take that tone with me.”

    I apologised. Indeed, he was doing me a favour. “You’re right Osman. You’re right. Now if you could park the car, I’d be grateful.”

    I’d never wanted to drive, and I wondered were I to get married, how many years it would be before I got found out. How many times would I need to find someone to park the girl’s car? How would I be found out? What would my reaction be? Would I be embarrassed? Dark secrets for most men tend to involve a secret mistress in the Bolton area and a few kids here and there. But for me it was that I couldn’t, and still to this day, can’t drive.

    Osman parked the car perfectly, not that far away from the entrance to the health centre.
    “Thank you,” I said.
    “You’re very handsome,” he replied.
    Now having done my fair share of travelling, I know each country has its own peculiar customs and traits, but I was pretty sure that there was not one English-speaking country where this was a stock reply to a thank you
    “You work out,” he continued. “I can see your chest, puffed out like, how you say, bird with red chest.”
    I got out of the car.
    “If you like, I can drive you home when you finish here.”
    ”That’s very kind of you, but I’m waiting for someone,” I said.
    “Oh.” He looked disappointed. Then his eyes shot into life. “What are you doing tomorrow? Would you like to go discotheque with me?”
    “That’s very kind of you, but look, I’m kind of seeing someone.”
    ”Another soldier?”
    “A girl.”
    He smiled. He took out a picture from the inside pocket of his grey-coloured jacket, the type you see by the hundreds on the Edgware Road.
    “My wife and two children.” He then pulled out a scrap of paper and wrote his number down. “You are like me. I too see woman, but I have fun also.” He winked. “If you want to go to the discotheque tomorrow, call me,” he continued. “But if wife answers, tell her you are client.”
    With that, Osman handed me his number and put the keys back in my hand.

    I was in little doubt that I hated the Gulf. The people who mistook me for an American, the Arab guys that would constantly hit on me, the way the call to prayers always woke me up at 4 in the morning, the food, and above all the girl. My time there was drawing to a rapid close.

    * * *

    The nearly wife looked at me incredulously. The car couldn’t have been parked better. I met her glare, and could suddenly hear dad’s voice.

    “It’s a big step for someone to come out and call you a liar, son.”

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    Dry Cleaning Question

    "Does this jumper smell to you?"
    The girlfriend put the jumper up to her nose.
    "It smells, but it's not a smelly smell."
    "How can it smell, but not smell?"
    "It's not a bad smell. That's what I mean. I tell you what you should do, get all your jumpers and take them down to the dry cleaners."
    "I don't know about that," I said.
    "What's the big deal?"
    I was in the dry cleaners most evenings to buy an evening paper. The local dry cleaners you see also doubles up as a newsagents.
    "Every time I go in wearing a jumper they've cleaned, they'll recognise it. They'll know they've cleaned it. I don't like that. It's like they've been doing me a favour."
    "What favour? You've paid for it."
    "I'd rather go somewhere where they don't know me." I paused. "Does that make sense?"
    "No. No it fucking doesn't. Neither do you. Neither does any of this."
    There was a long silence.
    "Do you know what that Surridge Dry Cleaners in Stockwell are like? What's their turnaround on jumpers like?"
    "You're going to jump on a bus to take your jumpers there when there's a dry cleaners down the road?"
    "Do you think I need to iron this?"
    "Fuck off Disappointed."
    "You know, none of my ex's ever swore at me like you do."
    "I mean it, fuck off. You're doing my head in."

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    All-Rounders

    A girl that doesn't swallow is like a tennis player that doesn't have the game to compete at Wimbledon. Yes, maybe 'serve and volley' is something most tennis players don't like, but if you're going to climb up the rankings, you need to adapt and get to grips with the game on grass.

    Andre Agassi didn't play at Wimbledon until 1991, but even he had to get with it in the end, and of course, he won in 1992. Monica Seles was another one that struggled on grass, and though she would never win Wimbledon, she reached the final one year. Neither of them ever pretended to love playing on grass, but they did it and their efforts brought pleasure to many.

    "Oh, but I don't like the taste," is the usual line from those girls who believe they have enough in their armoury not to have to bother.
    Listen, do you think Seles liked coming to the net? But she did because she needed the ranking points.

    You get my drift ladies. Us guys, we don't want clay court specialists, we want girls with an all-round game.

    See you at Wimbledon.

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    Shoe concerns

    "What is your problem Disappointed?"
    The girlfriend had stopped in the middle of the high street. She was wagging her finger at me somewhat aggressively. People could see she was finger wagging. And she didn't care.
    "I'm just saying," I began, "If I let you take my new shoes to work so I don't have to carry the bag around all day, I don't want you showing them to your work mates. I don't want people touching them. Keep them in their box."
    "Look Dis'..."
    Aargh! I do hate it when people shorten my name.
    "...I have no interest in showing your new shoes to anyone."
    "That's not a very nice tone you're taking," I replied.
    "I came to the shop with you so you could get a second opinion on the shoes, like you wanted. That's all. Now I'll take this bag, stick it under my desk and forget all about it. No one's going to be seeing any shoes."
    "Well, don't forget about it. I mean, I want them back tonight," I joked rather lamely.
    "You need to lighten up," she said.
    Oh God, I knew what was coming.
    "You need to be grateful for what you have. There are starving children in Africa who..."
    I closed my ears to the rest of the speech. I'd heard it too many times. I'm unhappy. Being told there are starving children in Africa doesn't help my unhappiness one bit. I will not have my legitimate shoe concerns undermined by images of hungry kids.
    "Just keep them in their box," I said, before kissing her on the cheek and heading off to get my train.

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    The Flip Flop Nightmare Goes On...

    I saw too many men out and about in flip flops yesterday to be happy with the way the world is going.

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    Tuesday, April 19

    Sandwich solution

    Is there someone out there who has it within their capability to create a properly-packed sandwich, one that doesn't fall apart when you're trying to eat it?

    What's the point in looking like a ponce, knocking back a latte, and sitting there in the cafe with your lap top - the locals wondering whether the laptop is in fact an alien - when your sandwich is breaking up before you? It's humiliating. I was having to ask people from the next table to come and help me with it.

    "All right, you take the chicken escalope, you, woman with big hairy mole on her face, take the lettuce. You with the sovereign ring, you're in charge of the bread but clean your hands first."

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    Blues

    It won't surprise you, being the miserable bastard that I am, that I hate birthdays. And today is my birthday. I always saw it more as a day for the parents, especially mums. After all, I didn't really have to do anything. And with them not being around now to make a big deal about it, it's a nothing event.

    I've been preparing myself mentally for the last six months. Every October 19th the countdown begins in earnest. Like most people, I find getting old depressing. I think 22 was my best age. You're not a kid any more, but with 21 being just a year earlier, you're still young enough to get away with doing stupid things and I certainly did enough of those.

    27 was a shock. I remember still thinking that meant I was still in my mid-twenties until someone pointed out that was late-twenties. That cut me like a knife. I don't think I have ever recovered.

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    Monday, April 18

    The Finish Line

    If you’re ever thinking of calling it a day, make sure you’re absolutely sure that you don’t want to carry on with life.

    I felt like a right cunt the other day pulling myself out of the river, and there’s no telling what kind of infection I could have picked up from the Thames. My clothes were soaked right through and I think my pants line was visible. I was also covered in mud having hoisted myself up the muddy river bank, my pockets still bulging with the rocks I’d used to weigh myself down.

    I'd tried to ready myself properly by holding my nose under water in a lukewarm bath in the month leading up to my attempt, but nothing can prepare you for jumping into a freezing dirty river that tastes horrible. And to see a fish within seconds of opening my eyes under water was a terrifying experience. On refelection, perhaps I ought to have reconsidered my decision not to throw myself off a tall building on the basis that I don't like heights.

    I could see the bemused look on this couple’s faces as I struggled past them. Understandably, they must’ve thought they’d found themselves a quiet, romantic spot. I think they were a new couple. They looked like they actually liked each other, and the guy seemed to be genuinly interested in what the girl had to say, so I'm guessing this was week 1 of their relationship. On reflection, my sudden appearance may have interrupted their first kiss.

    So remember. Be sure you’re doing the right thing before you bow out.

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    Sunday, April 17

    Worrying Euphemism

    I read in the paper today that police had discovered a body in some woods, and according to the Sergeant, the "corpse had been worried by animals".

    Death's biggest selling point is that you've got no more worries, so how the hell does an animal worry a corpse? What happens? Do animals come across a body in the woods and start flicking elastic bands at it, or place letters by the corpse from creditors demanding payment from the deceased?

    I'm guessing the term is a euphemism for animals eating away at a body, but this is a rather puzzling euphemism that took me a while to work out. They should just get to the point. If a family of foxes were seen taking chunks out of a human torso, or if a badger was spotted casually sauntering off with a human arm, I want to know about it. Instead, I've spent my afternoon worrying about how animals could possibly worry a corpse.

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    Saturday, April 16

    Where did the good dreams go?

    What happened to the good dreams? When I was a kid, I used to have some superb dreams, battling aliens, having a punch up with the reggae singer Eddy Grant on the deck of the QE11, shagging my mate's mum [he never talked to me again after I told him]. Not like now. I'm afraid to go to sleep these last few years.

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    Friday, April 15

    Bad Yawn

    Produced perhaps the most unattractive yawn of my life tonight on the train home. Eyes scrunched, mouth wide open and uncovered, teeth bared. All witnessed by a girl. I caught her looking but I was too tired to cover my mouth. Thankfully she got off at the next stop. She had a good arse too, so I applauded her off.

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    Thursday, April 14

    Nothing Really

    Sometimes I just feel shit about things. I'm not sure what I'm railing against, what I'm fighting for, indeed, whether I should be fighting for something. I'm not sure about anything. Just that my head hurts. And that life hasn't quite turned out how I'd have liked it to. But there are people on here, soldiers, you'll probably know who they are by now, who keep going no matter what, and love them or loathe them, knowing they're out there can snap you out of any navel gazing you might be doing. And I've needed that today.

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    The Wasted Decade

    I spent the whole of the nineties convinced I was one half of Tears For Fears. The whole thing became so real to me that even mum believed I was in the band, though dad had never heard of them.

    The decade passed me by and it was only once I realized I had never been in the group that I became aware of how attractive I was to the ladies. Looking back now, it is likely that my efforts to convince people that I was the real Roland Orzabal probably cost me somewhere in the region of, and this is a conservative estimate, two to three hundred ladies.

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    My Aunt must clean

    My aunt is obsessed with cleaning. Even when she comes round to visit me, she has to clean.
    "Leave it," I say. "Just sit down and finish your coffee."
    "Let me clean," she pleads.
    "Please. It's not why I got you round here."
    "I'll clean your internet," she says.
    "You can't clean it."
    "Come on Desilusiónado [Disappointed in Spanish], I bought my bleach and my gloves with me. Where is it?"
    "It can't be cleaned. It's not a physical thing."
    "What do you mean, it's not a physical thing?"
    "Please, just sit down."
    Just when you think the conversation is dead, she picks up a silver-coloured box with tax receipts from my desk. I know what's coming, but it still hurts.
    "Is this it? Is this the internet?"
    I grip the arms of my chair hard.
    She blows the dust off the box. "Look at the dust on that. No wonder you're always complaining your internet's slow. You sit down, I'll go and get my duster."

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    Fishing For Porn

    I’ve always been fascinated by water. Ponds, lakes, rivers. Never the sea though. That might be partly down to the fact that at nineteen, I'd fallen asleep on a waterbed in Malta and drifted out of the bay, only to be rescued by a fishing boat several hours later.

    When I was sixteen I became obsessed with fishing. And like everything I get involved in, within a matter of days I had amassed an impressive array of fishing equipment.

    I liked the idea of whiling away long summer days casting my rod into waters. The truth was that after a couple of such afternoons, I was completely bored and I didn’t like touching fish. I’d literally throw them back into the water with the hooks still in their mouths, and it’s things like that that I believe will count against me when it comes to getting into heaven. Mind you, I bet no one in their own fish communities messed around with those psycho-looking pierced fish once they were returned, or rather hurled, back into the water.

    Yes, my affair with angling was brief, and lasted perhaps a couple of months at best before I moved onto collecting porn. Buying porn was a wholly different matter to buying angling equipment though. I looked way too young for my age for a start, and the growth spurt that saw me consigned to bed for 3 weeks and rocket from 5.4 to 5.11 inside a month was still nearly a year away.

    At night I would psyche myself up in bed – thinking about porn is no easy thing when your parents are in the bed to your left, and your sister is occupying the top bunk, let me tell you – and I would come up with a hit list of newsagents that I could attempt to buy a filthy magazine from. I’d hit them early on the way to my Saturday job, I told myself. There won’t be many people about.

    Saturday morning would come and my bottle would stop at the door, and instead I’d buy myself the morning paper. And then, despite all this careful planning, one Friday afternoon I just decided I couldn’t take it any more. I needed porn, and I needed it there and then. More than needing porn, I actually needed to know I could buy it. It was a rite of passage for every young man. The wait couldn’t go on. Common sense deserted me. Folders full of porn-buying strategies were tossed into a bon fire and with a couple of mates [regular buyers of porn despite being younger than me] I marched to my local newsagent in Clapham North, Pete’s, of all places, and with the shop full of customers, reached up to the top for a copy of Escort.

    “Excuse me young man. Put that back.”

    Everyone’s eyes were on me. Ten years of shopping at Pete’s almost every day came to a shuddering halt there and then and I fled, my face as red perhaps as it would be the day those Maltese fishermen saved my life. I have never been back to the scene of my disgrace since. I have often asked myself why I put Pete through that. He’d seen me grow up; he’d seen me buy my comics, slush puppies, match box cars. He was proud of the man I was becoming, and then I put him through the pain of watching me trying to buy porn. I should have gone elsewhere. He deserved better than that and it was unforgivable.

    After that I knew buying a Jazz mag was beyond me, and to this day it remains so. Fuck all them 50 Things to do before you die lists that have visiting the Andes at number three, and swimming with dolphins in the Maldives at number 8. I want to buy porn before I die. I want to walk back into Pete’s, buy myself that copy of Escort and say, “Hurry up and take my money man, I need a tug and I need it now…look, if you don’t hurry up I shall be forced to do what I need to do right here.”

    As it was, it was left to my younger friends to help me put together a collection of porn mags almost unrivalled in Europe, and it was a collection that came together very quickly. Calls were fielded from museum curators as far a field as Moscow, eager for me to exhibit my collection.

    It was an offer I was giving serious consideration to when my sister discovered one such magazine hidden in the sleeve of Kylie Minogue’s first album. After a fortnight of paying her to keep quiet, I was quickly running out of cash and decided a quick evacuation was in order. It would be an evactuation on a scale not seen since British and French troops were withdrawn from Dunkirk in May 1940.

    The magazines were hurriedly put together into several bin liners and tossed over – no pun intended – into a neighbour’s garden, crashing through [I was later to learn] his greenhouse.

    Two years later, another brief dalliance with angling took place. This time I went to Richmond with several work friends. Italia ’90 I remember was on, Gascoigne’s famous tears just a week or so away. It really was a glorious summer’s day and I was there with all my angling gear and dressed up in the baggy Madchester garb that was all the rage in them days.

    Among the friends was Ray, a 29-year-old security guard with a serious drink problem and a very grave comb over. It quickly became obvious to my group that I had no idea how to fish and Ray, despite the dozen or so cans of tenants super he had already put away was becoming increasingly involved. In fact, if you were at Richmond that day and saw two men holding a rod, that was probably Ray and I.

    Then disaster struck. My rod got stuck among some reeds and I was struggling to resolve the situation. Ray told me to step aside and I decided to help myself to a drink. I walked over to the rest of the group who couldn’t have been more than three or four yards away.

    “Where’s Ray?” Asked Jill, his girlfriend.
    “He’s back there,” I replied nonchalantly.
    “Where’s Ray?” She repeated, though this time she was screaming.

    I turned round. Ray was nowhere to be seen. I couldn’t see him amongst the reeds, I couldn’t see him full stop. The man had vanished, though my rod, thankfully, was still there [I was planning on selling it].

    “Take off your trainers.”
    “Excuse me?” I said.
    “Take off your trainers,” Said Jill. “ You’re going in.”

    By now, Ray must have been gone for at least a minute. Not a long time in the real world, but in ‘might be drowning time’ an eternity. I took my trainers off, finding it hard to come to terms with the fact that I was about to go into the water. “But there’s fish in there,” I almost cried.
    “Off course there are fish, that’s why we’re here watching you fucking fish,” she retorted.

    I was undoing my top when all of a sudden, Ray’s head popped out of the water and he began a drunken swim back to the riverbank.

    We made our way back towards Richmond High Street with barely a word uttered, Ray greeting the strange looks he got with a volley of abuse at strangers.

    Our bus came quickly. Ray handed the driver a five-pound note.
    “Single please.”
    “I can’t accept this,” said the driver. “It’s wet.”
    “Off course it’s wet, you cunt.” There are many who think the c-word is never more effective than when uttered by a northerner, but Ray, with his strong south London accent, could give them a run for their money. “I’m fucking wet. Now a single please.”

    Suffice to say we had to wait for the next bus.

    I expected to have better memories from my brief flirtation with angling, but they’re almost as disappointing as my doomed attempts to buy porn.


    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    Wednesday, April 13

    Compulsory applause for a great arse

    I think when you see a woman with a great arse walking down the street, it should be acceptable and compulsory to break into spontaneous applause.

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    Tuesday, April 12

    Imperfection

    "Oh my God."
    "What?"
    "Your chest...feel this...it's higher on one side."
    "It's what?" I was getting really pissed off by now.
    "It's raised," said the girlfriend, sitting herself up in bed. "Feel it."
    I felt my chest. There seemed to be nothing unusual.
    "Your chest's got an imperfection. It's deformed."
    "Get the fuck out of here with your deformed," I replied putting my top back on, all of sudden feeling self-conscious. "You're deformed.
    "There's no need to get personal," she said sounding hurt.
    I turned my back to her and decided to try and get to sleep. There was a stony silence for all of a minute.
    "I think you need to go to the doctor's."
    "It's Sunday night," I shouted.
    "Well it's up to you, but that to me looks serious."
    "It's Sunday night," I repeated. "What, if I wait until the morning it'll be too late?"
    "No, it's just-"
    "Just what?" I was like an attack dog by now. "Could you not wait until the morning to tell me this? How am I meant to sleep now?"
    She looked at me with disdain. "So if you saw I had one breast bigger than the other, you wouldn't say anything?"
    "I wouldn't put the fear of God into you at 2 in the morning," I replied. "I can't believe you. This is the first time we're getting it on, and this is what happens?"
    She tried to rub my chest again. I pushed her off, but there was no letting up from her. "You need to get that looked at."
    I leant over my side of the bed, scrabbling around desperately. "Where's my fucking headphones?"

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    Raise your glasses to the headphones

    I could never envisage myself living in a world without headphones. When the girlfriend is sobbing her heart out upstairs, you just slip them on and block the world out. I wonder what guys did in these circumstances before their invention?

    Let's hear it for the headphones.

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    Monday, April 11

    Meanswear

    Why is menswear always upstairs when you walk into a department store? Why is it always us who should have to make the effort to go up a floor?

    If I make a million, I'm going to buy some premises, open a store and I'm putting menswear on the ground floor. Floors one through to five will be empty, and womenswear will be on the sixth floor.


    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    Gum Horror


    Above: The stain that ripped the heart out of my weekend.

    "No one can see it," Said the girlfriend.
    "That's not the point. I can see it."
    She sighed.
    "I know it's there, and it's making my head hurt something bad. It really is."

    Me and stains have never made for comfortable bedfellows, and here I was, a victim of perhaps the worst staining I'd ever suffered. Jacket, bag and jeans had all succumbed to serious staining because some moron decided to put gum on the back of my train seat yesterday.

    The jacket is on its way to the dry cleaners, while the bag has been thrown. I wore the jeans out today but had to turn back. I just can't function looking at that stain. If I find out who did it, I will sleep with their mother and I will take pictures. If it was you and you are reading this, I want you to know you are a cunt. And your parents are cunts. In fact, if I'm right, you have to go back to the 1760s to find the last person in your family not to be a cunt.

    "Stop trying to scrub it off. You'll make it worse."
    "How can scrubbing it make it worse than it already is?" I asked.
    "You're such a drama queen," the girlfriend retorted.
    "Why do you always have to make out I'm making something out of nothing? Look at this," I said pointing at my gum-stained left leg. "My jeans are ruined."
    "They're not ruined," she said, making little effort to disguise her lack of interest.
    "You never agree with me on anything," I said.
    The girlfriend shook her head and reached for her nail file. "You know, I don't really know why I'm with you."
    "Well, we're agreed on that."


    ****************
    "How about ice cubes?"
    "What?"
    "I've heard if you rub an ice cube over the gum, it gets rid of the stain," I said.
    "If this conversation lasts another five seconds, you're going to be rubbing the ice cube over your jeans as a single man. Now switch the light off and go back to sleep. It's 4 in the fucking morning."
    "You have to swear? You know I don't like women swearing."
    "Fuck off Disappointed."

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    No More Wristbands

    Message to all the wankers out there wearing well-meaning wristbands. I don't care what the cause is. Enough is enough. No more wristbands. Please.

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    Sunday, April 10

    Similar Interests

    The only thing my girlfriend and I have in common is that we both have no interest in eachother's interests.

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    Stairs

    I spoke to my dad's cousin yesterday. She's always been the only one of his side of the family I've got on with. The rest were all a bit vulgar and hillbillyish.
    "Is that you Disappointed?" She said excitedly on hearing my voice.
    "Yeah. How are you?"
    "Oh, not well my love. I fell down some stairs."

    She's in her early fifties now, still too young you'd have thought to be tumbling down stairs like an old granny. The thing is though, she's been falling down stairs for as long as I can remember. I don't think we've ever had a single conversation where she isn't recovering from such a fall, all the more remarkable when you learn that there were never any stairs in her flat.

    Her falls were often a useful tool in dad defusing the arguments that ensued because he never let my sister and I eat there. Their flat - my cousin was one of five family members and two dogs that lived there - you see was filthy. Dad would brief us before we went round on what to say if we were offered food, often stopping as we arrived at their front door to check one last time that my sister and I were on message.

    "What's the matter wth you?" My cousin would yell at my dad. "You never let your kids eat here. Are you disgusted by us or something?"
    "What happened to your face?" Dad would ask calmly whilst pulling a dog hair out of his tea.
    "Oh, I fell down some stairs," she'd reply
    "Again? You really need to be more careful."
    "I know."

    In over twenty years of going there, not one single bit of food, not even a biscuit, passed between our lips.

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    Saturday, April 9

    They've got to be ****ing joking

    Why?
    Don't they realise this woman makes my head hurt?

    Playing It Straight
    New series. June Sarpong presents the dating show in which 10 eligible bachelors arrive at a Mexican hacienda and compete to win the affections of single lady Zoe - who is unaware that five of the men looking to impress her are gay, attempting to fool her to win the £100,000 prize up for grabs. During the first week, Zoe learns that some of the guys wooing her aren't straight - and must vote two of them out of the game based on her first impressions.

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    Fish and flood

    Do you get fish in floods? I mean, when you see these people in their rubber knee-high boots wading in through the water, pushing the elderly and infirm in boats, do you think there’s a chance of them being attacked by carp or pike?

    I would imagine there is. When a river bursts its banks, I can’t quite see fish trying to swim against the tide and saying, “It’s a flood, let’s stay put."

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    Women

    Women.
    You can't live with them...and you can't live with them.

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    Friday, April 8

    Blame the mum, she never locked the door

    I once walked in on a friend's mum when she was on the John. I couldn't have been more than ten. Why she didn't lock the door, only she could answer that. What I can tell you is that it just wasn't possible to continue my friendship with her son after that. We tried, but it just wasn't possible. Everything came back to his mum. I needed years of counselling to deal with that one, and I still have the odd night where I wake up screaming after dreaming I've walked in on her again.

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    Thursday, April 7

    Pump up the volume

    When the guy next to you on the train whips his little feller out, you kind of know that knocking up the volume on your walkman isn’t going to help you.

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    What else can happen?

    One of my many ex-girlfriends is now in a band garnering many a positive review. With the band placing much of their hopes on her ample cleavage [as seen in the papers], there is a good chance she may become well known before I do. That's just not on. Soon I think this will start keeping me up at night, especially if she makes any more disparaging remarks about me in interviews. I mean, what's her problem with net curtains?

    She never had any obvious talent, but she hung about in a rather cliiquey, poncy group that was always destined for great things, and some of those people are already well known. Some people will, despite a lack of talent, make a name for themselves in the arts. They'll try their hand at acting, music, whatever, and while they'll be crap at most, they will be decent enough at one to embark upon a stellar journey.

    I don't know how I will deal with the fact that I was balling this girl when she was a nothing. Might have been better to sort her out when she was a something. Now I'll be like Britney Spears' teenage sweetheart, working in a factory, selling the odd story about prom night and so on.

    Why did this have to happen to me? I'm all wrong to be dealing with this kind of thing. I'm bitter enough as it is without having to watch someone I, at times disliked, have a successful life.

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    Body Pumping

    "How can you only tell me on the same day?"
    My Ugandan friend [the same man who would drive his women around for 20 minutes so they never worked out where he lived] wasn't happy. I'd called him up that morning having just seen that the annual Jazz festival at St Christopher's Place was back on that day, and knowing my friend was a big jazz fan, I thought he might like to head down there that evening.
    "In Africa, you can tell me to come tonight, but here in England you can't. Things are different here, Disappointed."
    He took a long pause. My ears were burning.
    "Obviously you didn't want me to come," he added. "Anyway, I body pump my body on Wednesday at the gymnasium, make sure it looks right for my ladies."


    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    Wednesday, April 6

    Left-handed Texting Championships

    Just received my wild card invite for the second left-handed texting championships to be held in Brussels this year. Not sure I'll be entering. This year it's gone all gimmicky. They've introduced a section where the judges talk to you about several topics. Now I can talk about anything, but I'm worried I might be asked to go on about animals for five minutes. As you know, I don't like animals. They are so boring.

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    Shola

    Train hopping on the underground last night, I passed a young girl on her own who was singing loudly on the platform. This always reminds me of the time a decade or so ago when you'd always get girls doing this in the wake of the R n B singer Shola Ama, who was famously discovered warbling to herself at Hammersmith station by a record executive.

    On hearing of Ama's good fortune, all these young girls immediately took to singing banal R n B shite on train platforms, raising their hands to the heavens as they hit the high notes [usually forgetting all about their young kids who were left to wander freely on the platform].

    I remember getting myself some bogus business cards made up at Oxford Circus underground station which said I was a top record executive with a well-known company, and I'd hand them out to these fools whenever I happened upon them on the underground.

    Within the day they'd call me and I'd vent all my fury.

    "You cunt, you think you're gona get a record deal with a voice like that. Fuck off back to college and lay off the KFC...and clean your kid's mouth. Yeah, you heard me."

    Shola Ama was okay though, to be fair.

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    Dead Man

    There’s a rather rough looking old bloke who’s always in my favourite café. He’s never smelt great but he looks to be in really bad shape these days, inching towards death. Having been around people who’ve passed away suddenly, you do get to recognise the blueish pallor the skin adopts when the end is near for someone, and the end, I think, is near for this guy.

    I did wonder yesterday whether he was dead already. Maybe I was the only one who could see him?

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    The Sword in the Stone


    I was on my way to meet an old mate I hadn't seen in years, and, a rarity for me, I was actually looking forward to the evening. My attempt to prise open my pocket-sized tub of Vaseline had begun on the escalators at Stockwell station as I headed down to the platform.

    I rode the Northern line all the way to Elephant & Castle, and by the time my train pulled into the Elephant it was quite obvious that getting this tub open was proving a major problem.

    At Elephant I got on the Bakerloo line to Baker Street, finding myself a quite carriage so I could put in all my energy into getting this blasted thing open. Feet on windows, orgasm face on and making heavy panting noises that didn't belong on a train carriage, I gave it everything, the veins in my temples ready to pop, but still the bastard wouldn't give.

    I'm looking at it on my desk this morning. It's laughing at me. Since buying it a month ago, I still haven't been able to actually use it. I think I might have a sword in the stone scenario. Whoever opens this tub will be the chosen one.

    There's already a long queue outside my front door; strangers are walking in and having a go at opening the tub, but so far none have succeeded. Whoever eventually manages to open it will provide much needed leadership for the new race of white-trousered fops poised to emerge and reclaim café society from those whose passion for coffee stems from watching Friends.

    But it won't be me. I'm off to Superdrugs to get a new tub.

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    Tuesday, April 5

    Raj

    So I’m at the Dentist, and I know it’s going to cost me a bomb. This guy Raj is one of the top guys around, and with the money I’m about to pay him, I could buy myself a ranch in Peru complete with servants.

    “Tell me about your smile,” he says, gaze fixed on me, his hand on mine to make sure I’m holding the mirror which I’ve been handed so that I can look at my teeth.
    “Well, I don’t have one, “ I reply. “Fortunately I’m a very serious guy and I don’t smile.”
    “So why do you want this work done?” He asks. By now his gaze is unremitting, and I’m half-expecting him to start stroking my hair.

    “Well, my girlfriend wants me to have a smile. I’m just waiting for her to give me something to smile about. But meantime, it’ll give her something to smile about.”
    He smiles, flashing a set of perfectly capped teeth that look like they’ve walked off the set of Dallas.

    I put the mirror down and start looking at his hair. It’s closely cropped to disguise his receding hairline, and I’m impressed that there are no razor bumps at the back of his scalp.

    “How do you do that? Every time I’ve shaved my head, I get razor bumps.”
    “Well actually I use a clearasil shaving balm, and razor bumps are alien to me,” he says rather matter-of-factly.

    We get chatting about shaving balms, razors, electric shavers, and it’s great. I’m looking at the hygienist with the corner of my eye, and I can see her going green. She’s probably been there ten years and has never had this kind of chemistry with Raj. I can imagine him making a good dinner party guest.

    Finally, I get up to leave and he hands me the invoice. I look at the invoice and instead of charging me for the 30 minute appointment, he’s charged me for 45. Can you believe that? The man has charged me for the quarter of an hour chat we had about his scalp. We were chatting about him for Christ’s sake. And I’ve been charged for that? These dentists are absolutely scandalous. Mind you, his scalp was impressive. A lesson to every man.

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    Cathy

    I had a mate who was slipping his missus a length one night and in the throes of passion belted out, "Oh Cathy, you know you like it like this." Nothing original about the line, except to say his girlfriend wasn't called Cathy. But what man hasn't screamed out a former flame's name when he's reaching the finishing line? Here's the rub though. None of my friend's exs were called Cathy either. Hell, he didn't even know a Cathy.

    He did the decent thing in not putting up a fight when his girlfriend dumped him. Instead, he launched a full and honest post-mortem, an investigation that went all the way back to his school days. But he was unable to turn up one single Cathy in his past.

    Finding himself single, last summer he embarked upon a summer tour of non-stop shagging, as you do, but at the end of August, it happened again.

    "Cathy, you dirty slag, come on, uh."

    The girl was only a fling, so the consequences weren't as far reaching this time, but suffice to say he wouldn't be seeing her again. But where was this Cathy thing coming from? Too afraid to get into the sack with beautiful women, my now celibate friend prowls the streets at night searching for a Cathy. He doesn't even care what they look like. Any Cathy will do. He knows it's the only solution to his bizarre problem.

    He rings up companies on spec to see 1] if they have any Cathy's working there, and 2] if they have any vacancies. He emails Cathy's on Friends Reunited and pretends he went to their schools [A line of investigation which has led to him corresponding with 72-year-old Cathy Law from the Bolton area.]. He needs a Cathy. Only Cathy will do.

    Tanned Panel Slip-Ons are Calling


    Above [right]: The tanned slip-ons, earmarked as my next shoes.

    Had a dream last night, actually it felt more like a vision, it was that vivid, of my next pair of shoes. A pair of tanned panel slip-ons. I feel them calling me and am sure they will be with me before the month is out.

    My response to tragic global news does tend to be retail therapy. The Pope's ending was long and drawn out, and regardless of faith, it was difficult not to feel huge respect for a man whose spirituality was profound. Yet here I am thinking about my next pair of shoes. Hopefully I won't be as bad as I was in the aftermath of the tsunami. That was one hell of a spending spree.


    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    Monday, April 4

    The Cloak


    Thinking of getting one of these for the summer. Quite like the idea of wearing a cloak to the local shop just to buy a loaf of bread. Not sure the adidas Stan Smith will compliment them though.

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    Collaborator

    Fancied loafing around the flat and watching some history programmes, but it's all World War Two on the history channels. Sixty years on, and this country's still obsessed with all that.

    I have this uneasy feeling I would have been a collaborator had I lived during the war. Once France was liberated, I would probably have had my head shaved by the French Resistance and been paraded through the streets of Paris in the back of some truck, where I would have been pelted with rotten fruit.

    I don't think having my hair shaved would have been that much of a problem though, after all, they do say that your hair grows back stronger when you shave it off.

    I do once recall telling an old friend that I had this sneaking suspicion I would have been a collaborator, and he stated, quite firmly, that he was in doubt he would have been working for the Resistance.

    Not for long," I replied. "I'd have grassed you up."


    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    Not so Demure

    Miss Demure's been laid. At least I think she has.

    http://ledemure.blogspot.com/

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    Almost Weeping for the Foot Soldier I Once Was

    The black clouds that were forming over my head on Friday well and truly descended on me over the weekend. Saturday was a nothing event. Had to spend quality time with the girlfriend. Why are they so insistent on enforcing this? The time is anything but quality.

    Saturday was made worse by knowing that those of my friends who remain single were out disgracing themselves like the good foot soldiers they are, and the word jealousy couldn't do justice to what I was feeling. But I also felt proud of them. They are warriors carrying on the good fight. They are what remains of a once proud race that was able to do what they wanted, when they wanted, with who they wanted, before they were set upon by the species known as women.

    The weak were unable to resist the breasts and cute arses that set upon them, but the stronger ones were acutely aware of what they stood to lose where they to step across the void. Not even the sweetest perfume, sexiest underwear or the promise of a clean shaven groin was enough to snare them, and they took refuge in mountains and caves, looking on helplessly as their weaker brothers were marched away with ropes around their necks by this strange, multi-shopping bag carrying breed.

    Today these handful of survivors continue to walk in a world where their wardrobe isn't changed. They do not spend hours on a Saturday afternoon following their other half around the shops, heads bowed, shadows of their former selves. They can do whatever they please with their hair, and they don't have to suffer the indignity of being told the mates they've had since they were five-years-old are all wrong for them. Hugging is alien to them. Their X-Boxes are never put away. Explaining the offside rule to a partner when you just want to watch the football in peace is something they've never had to do. They call the shots. They control their own destinies. They are the real men and I stand to salute them.

    A quick ring around on Sunday morning, a roll call of hungover guys carrying on the good fight at which I so excelled for the first four years of this new century [If you're a woman reading this, the chances are that I slept with you between 2000 and 2004, and don't pretend you didn't enjoy it...okay, look, you try keeping it up on prozac.], deepend my pain further.

    Lengthy drinking sessions of epic proportions that started in the middle of the day -though I am a crap drinker, I like to delude myself that I could have lasted the pace - trawls through Soho's seedy porn shops, late night kebabs, all these things were there in the reports I received.

    With the girlfriend upstairs on the phone for the best part of an hour to the best friend she barely sees, I flung the Ikea catalogue across the room in frustration, curled up into a ball on the sofa and almost wept.


    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    Sunday, April 3

    Thoughts

    "You're bloody hard work." The girlfriend wasn't pleased. "You're like nothing I've ever seen," she continued. "It's doing my head in."
    "It's all right for you," I replied. "You only have to listen to this. I have to think it."

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    Saturday, April 2

    Final Cigarette

    Did I tell you I used to smoke? It was only briefly, at the tail end of the eighties, but let me tell you, I was a wicked smoker. I used to vary my style a little, but towards the end of my time as a smoker, my fag ash flicking technique was second to none.

    People in Clapham still talk about it. To this day, many of that poncy place’s inhabitants claim to have seen me smoking, but the reality is that only close friends were lucky enough to witness it.

    Nevertheless, there are plans to build a statue of me with a cigarette just outside Clapham Common tube station, somewhere where the locals can come and pay their respects, though in truth, many of Clapham’s real people have, since my smoking heyday, been forced to move onto somewhere more affordable.

    Today marks the sixteenth anniversary of my retirement from smoking. And if you walk down the High Street towards Clapham North station, past what is now Blockbusters, you’ll see a ceremonial cigarette being lit and passed around by people to mark the occasion, for it is here that I smoked my last cigarette.


    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    Friday, April 1

    Feel a bit of Latin Coming On


    Above: 2 weeks in the gym and I reckon I could lift the one on the right above my head.

    I am feeling seriously depressed this afternoon. Not sure why. I'm playing loads of loud happy music to try and lift myself, but it's doing fuck all. I feel like stripping down to my pants and running out of the flat, holding a huge rock above my head and shouting obscenities at strangers in Latin.

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    Ghostly Giant Hand on My Arse


    I did some labouring work back in the summer of '98. It's amazing, but as soon as you become a labourer, your waistline loses its ability to hold up your trousers. It makes no difference if like me, you've never had a problem keeping your trousers up where they should be. You get builder's arse regardless.

    It's almost as if the spirits of all the builders who've gone before you have all combined to try and pull your trousers down and expose your crack. There's one big giant ghostly hand right on your arse, tugging away repeatedly, and your cheeks end up hanging out of your trousers, and no matter how ugly the woman that walks past, you're straight in with the obligatory whistle. That last bit I like actually.

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    Music Festivals [Groan]


    Above: Music Festival fans.

    In the wanker hierarchy, they stand shoulder to shoulder with students and people with multiple piercings and celtic band tattoos around their biceps.

    Now listen here. I don't give a toss if you've seen the Manics live. I don't care if watching David Gray on stage made you cry. Get in the fucking shower, have a wash, and grow up. You've got work in the morning.

    And tidy up your room.

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.

    A Little Corridor Action


    I saw No Way Out last night. Arguably Kevin Costner's finest cinematic moment. He was wearing a wicked pair of white navy slacks, white shoes, and best of all, there were lots of chases through big shiny corridors inside the Pentagon. What is it with American films and corridor chases? I suspect that when they're not busy invading countries, or munching on hot dogs, Americans are busy running through corridors. Not that I'm complaining.

    I'd love to run through a corridor. Being chased I supposed would be more thrilling than giving chase. The latter would mean I'm probably angry about something. I don't want to be angry about stuff. It tires me out. I'll settle for being chased. Just me bearing down on a corridor that the janitor's slowly mopping up, skating round the corner on the slippery surface like a cartoon character, as I'm pursued perhaps by some camp men looking to cop a feel of my amazing white slacks.

    © Disappointed of West Egg 2005. Do not reproduce without permission.