Sweet Smile

‘Right, that’s the taxi booked for half-past seven in the morning – stop everything and come and pack! Get the cases down from the attic so that we can finish and then eat and then watch a movie and then go to bed!’

Her sweet voice rounded the corner from the upstairs study, bounced down the thirteen stairs and swerved into the living room where he sat thinking about nothing in particular on his fifty-seventh boxing day afternoon. He checked the clock: fifteen-seventeen.

Hmm, so that gives us, ahm … sixteen is four, five, six, seven, which is three add twelve, so fifteen hours plus thirteen minutes until we have to leave the house. Considering that it’ll take me about eleven of those minutes to pack then … Yeah, I think I’d better get started now.

‘Coming, my dear!’

His sweet voice traversed the reverse of the path hers had taken and she smiled.

My Evening S20170722

This round up of the evening seemed like a good idea when I started doing it. Creating a space where I could talk about the events of my evening seemed like an easy thing to do. It was like a free pass. A free post. Nothing strenuous.

But now, having done it for a couple of weeks, I’m feeling kind of exposed. It’s revealed to me (and you) how monumentally boring I am.

Read another book – blah! Watched another movie – fla! Ate another meal – how boringly normal! Same things, over and over again.

I want to think that I am special. I had such dreams! So many things I wanted to achieve and places I wanted to go.

Actually, that’s a lie. I am, in fact, living up to my expectations of me. I always wanted to be a computer programmer (and I am), travel a bit (which I have), live safely and comfortably in a house (which I do). Hey, hey – I’m living the (my) dream!

What can I say? I actually enjoyed the movie. The book is good – it’s teaching me loads about meditation, which is excellent considering that I’ve been trying to calm and clear my mind since I was in my very early twenties. And the food was good and wholesome.

I have a …

But there I’ll stop. I’m just trying to cheer myself up (again).

I mean – it works, but …

Well, you know.

It’s enough.


My Evening F20170721

This might be a random ramble so buckle up.

Twenty-first today and my birthday will be on the thirtieth. Eesh, another year has gone by and what have I achieved? A better job, more money, more personal freedom, a successful blog, more confidence as a writer (apart from the shite I turn out for the Open Uni course), a little red sports car in the offing, the freedom of not having my previous car for a whole year, more holidays, better friends, an interesting mind, a learning experience … enough, I’m starting to swerve into non-concretes. It’s been a good year actually, whichever way on.

Had a long and potentially stressful, but actually quite relaxed day at work and so I took the evening off. I picked up a pizza on the way home and ate it in a very few ginormous mouthfuls. I finished someone’s song in the street. I smiled and thanked the girl who held her dog back and she smiled back. I got home and immediately got out the computer.

And that’s where my day ended really. As soon as the laptop was in front of me, my interaction with everything beyond that screen ended. Even as I peeled my big, fat orange, my eyes were glued to the movie. As I ate it – glued. As I made a nice cup of tea – glued. As I typed this – glued.

I might as well go to bed now.I’m done.

I’m done.

My Evening W20170719

Slap, bang, wallop – here we go:

  • Chickpea ‘n’ potato curry and peas paneer with paratha roti
  • Less Than Zero by Bret Easton Ellis
  • Saga volume 2 by Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples
  • The Impossible starring Naomi Watts and Ewan McGregor.

One of those is a book I finished, another is a movie I watched, one a book I started and another still is a meal I ate. There were snacks too. I meditated a little, wrote a little less and sucked air throughout.

This is my life – sucking in and sucking in and sucking in.

My Evening M20170717

Most of my evening was taken up watching the awesome Spider-Man: Homecoming at the cinema. The rest of it was about other stuff.

The other stuff:

  • Walking from work, walking to Vue, walking around Tesco looking for pickled beetroot and frozen ginger (don’t ask).
  • Eating pasta pie and tomato choka, eating lots of snacks (cherries, orange, grapes, crisps, orange juice).
  • Reading How to Build a Girl by Caitlin Moran (still).
  • Breathing.

I added the last one so that I don’t seem like I do the same thing night after night – did it work?

My Evening S20170716

Here’s a picture of my feet. They are feeling utterly relaxed as they hang out with my legs on this lovely, sunny Sunday evening.

Although it’s not the end of the night and I can’t really tell what the future holds I’m going to tell you about my evening.

And even though the future is uncertain, I can assure you that whatever happens, my legs and feet will not have a concern in the world.

As for the rest of me …

Well, my thumbs are busy on this magnum opus, my eyes are similarly employed in a supporting capacity, as is my brain. My mouth is anticipating getting acquainted with the half a big, fat orange I have in my bag – peeled and ready to go and my nose is busy channelling air into my lungs.

When the orange is done, or perhaps even during – let’s see how daring I feel, I’m going to read a bit more of the excellent How To Build A Girl by Caitlin Moran. I only started it at midnight last night and I’m already on page 123, so that’s how good it is.

There’s a disclaimer on the first page that says “this is a novel and is fictitious”, but I don’t believe a word of it.

Then after that I’m going to walk and read until it either gets too dark or too cold to read at which point I’ll head home and go to bed.

Hope that at least one of your dreams came true today, and if not, then tomorrow brings you wonders.

P.S. I have cooked and eaten good food. My tummy is happy.

And now – the orange.

My Evening S20170715

Share your story here, says the prompt. I cannot tell you mine. I am tied up in forbiddens. There is nothing I can say.

So I’ll tell you that I ate pizza and chips. I’ll say that I watched half a movie called … Ah, who cares what it was called. It was that 2004 one about the tsunami with that Scottish bloke and someone that might have been called Naomi who looks like that woman who used to be married to Tom Cruise. Yeah, yeah – I know I could have looked it up, but then – so can you.

What else can I tell you. That I had to go into the garage to finish off the book I was reading because only there could I find enough enough peace to be able to concentrate on it? That the opposite of love is not hate, but apathy? That emptiness, the exalted goal of meditators everywhere can be found within everyday life?

But what would these things mean to you?

I remember when I used to wish for more hours in a day so that I could cram everything in. Now, I’m looking for something to put into a day so that I can fill a small part of it with meaning.

And what made the difference? Oh, I can give you theories, but at the end of the day – it’ll just be talk. Because at the end of this day I’m just one more bloke sat in one more bed tapping his thumbs against one more smartphone. How dumb is that!

My Evening F20170714

Desperately tired.

6-7 Reading and blogging
7-8 Eating and washing up
8-9 Sulking and moping around
9-10 Mooching and watching a movie
10-11 Watching a movie and eating snacks
11-12 Finishing up a movie as I’m falling asleep.

And that’s it, folks – that’s as exciting as a Friday night gets for me.

I mean – there’s lots going on inside my head too, but you think I can give that for free?

My Evening T20170713

I can’t stand sleeping in the daytime – even if that snooze is in the evening. I just wake up grumpy and then I continue to feel frumpy until it’s time for bed. That’s what happened just now. I let myself fall asleep and now I feel … well, you know how I feel.

I never want a good thing to end, so I prolong it and stretch it out, and before I know it, it’s minutes past midnight and I still haven’t put down the book or closed the laptop lid. Six thirty is my getting up time, so you probably understand what I mean.

Before I fell asleep I had a perfectly lovely meal of chickpeas and potato in a curry sauce on a bed of rice. There’s a fancy name for the dish but it slips my mind. It was followed by a bit of a crossword and a bit of reading and a bit of sleep.

After I woke up I had some icy grapes. They were perfectly lovely too. I think I’ll have a nice cup of tea when I’ve finished writing.

Have you ever noticed that words fall into predictable patterns? Writing a piece like this is not that much different from writing a song. It’s all about repeating phrases and themes.

  • Look at how I
    • described falling asleep
    • told you happened before,
    • then wrote about what happened after.
  • See how I had food before and then food afterwards.
  • Watch how I began the piece with a summary refrain.
  • Notice how I will finish the piece with a balancing concluding coda.

All these things together produce a kind of a harmony that pleases the mind of the reader. It persuades them that they have read something satisfying and complete within itself.

Of course, I just made all that stuff up. But I hope it’s true all the same. I hope you’ll finish reading this and be left with the mental equivalent of having consumed a satisfying meal.

So there you have it – an evening of eating swirling around a small sleep, like a tornado twisting around the eye of a storm, or a dish of tomato soup with a blob of cream on the top being stirred around and around and around.

May you have the sense to extract what nourishment you can from my sanities without being affected by the inevitable accompanying inanities.


My Evening T20170711

I only did three things this evening:

  1. Cooked and consumed a meal (that is, I heated up leftovers, which I ate whilst trying not to think of the Chinese meal that I could have been eating if I hadn’t felt obligated to eat the remains of yesterday’s food)
  2. Watched a movie – After The Dark, which was about a thought experiment in a philosophy class. Please – I want that time back. It would have been okay if I had wanted to learn a bit of philosophy, but I had no need. Hey-ho – life.
  3. Recorded a song using GarageBand. You can listen to it on this post: Numb Fingertips – The Soundtrack (it’s only three minutes long) and read the lyrics on this post: Numb Fingertips.

Oh, actually, the other thing I did was listen to music and write on my blog.Yeah – this one. Yeah, I know you’re reading it now and so you already know I wrote on it.

Yeah – this one.Yeah, I know you’re reading it now and so you already know I wrote on it.

Yeah, I know you’re reading it now and so you already know that I wrote on it.

Yeah, okay – and a good night to you.