Wednesday, April 27, 2005


Just as a question – how long does chewing gum last? No I don’t mean how long can you chew it before it loses its flavour, but how long does it last after it’s been used.

They recently steam cleaned the pavements where I live, and the removal of all those little white splodges has made a noticeable difference. And it’s not like they’ve come back overnight, the streets are still clear. So take these facts into account – there is no immediate build up of chewing gum after cleaning, and you never actually ever see anyone flobbing a gum loogey onto the ground, and then add the fact that some pavements are absolutely wall to wall with the stuff. The only conclusion is that chewing gum has an absolutely terrifyingly long half life. A piece of Wrigley’s finest squashed flat by 10,000 feet a day must be able to survive for years, if not, and I’m not joking, decades!

Why don’t they build space shuttle tiles out of used chewing gum – that’d sort their problems out.

Actually I’ve just done a little bit of research – chewing gum is (basically) made from the same group of chemicals as rubber. No wonder it doesn’t go away. It’s not like dropping a Mr Softy on the floor.


Tonight I shall mostly be . . . pulling up carpets and slicing them into manageable pieces. Just bought a Stanley knife for that exact purpose, and jolly superior it is too. Stanley knife technology has moved on since I were a lad – rubber grips, thumb switch locking wheel , I dunno. Basically still the same though – a razor blade in a banana.

Japanese Canteen

Got my lunch from The Japanese Canteen today - Prawn Yakiudon, but frankly it was pretty uninspired – sorta gloopy. A bit balnd really, despite being too salty. Certainly didn’t feel particularly invigorating which is what noodles should really do – give you a feeling of inner peace and well being. Have none of them ever seen Tampopo? Well I shall give them another shot next week – maybe it was just a bad call today.

Life Problems

Regular readers will be aware that I haven’t been a particularly happy camper of late, and there are many reasons for this, which I don’t think I really want to go into now, suffice it to sat it’s nothing all that special : Physical decrepitude, fat, unstable (albeit well paid) peripatetic employment, ineffective divvies for colleagues, can’t afford to buy a flat anywhere worth living in, sleeping alone every night for the rest of my life, constant thoughts of aging, death and the wasted opportunities of youth; pretty much the usual, then.

So I’ve decided that the root of my pain lies in the fact that I work in an office. I fundamentally don’t think we were meant to be in offices. Actually that’s cobblers. When Ugg the caveman left the family hovel in the morning to hunt for woolly mammoths you know he joined his brother troglodytes for a bit of a journey and then spent the rest of the day bitching about the saucepan lids and gossiping with Thrag about what Splod said to Glop and why Umpag doesn’t have a chance of being promoted to Deputy Hunt Leader despite what his little fan club Skog and Bagpak have been going round saying. So simply substitute ‘A seven story fully air-conditioned prestige building in the Basingstoke – Dagenham triangle’ for ‘A patch of frozen ice-age tundra located approximately 2 miles north of what will one day become Munchen-Glaadbach’ and it’s basically been pretty much the same experience ever since the first idiot thought it’d be a fun idea to hang out with the rest of the proto-monkeys and see if they couldn’t form a committee and make that idiot Plikka-plok get the bananas today.

New Career

So just quitting my job wouldn’t cut it, I need to escape the whole historical imperative to form working parties and spend the day coming up with new reasons why nothing is our fault. No, I need to find some sort of employment that lets me choose to spend as much time as I like on my own. So far it’s a fairly short list :-

  1. Conceptual Artist

  2. Graphic designer

  3. Freelance journalist

  4. Poet

  5. Novelist

  6. Pornographer

  7. Full time doley vermin

  8. Cinematic auteur

Of course there’s a downside to all of them :-

  1. Conceptual Artist – singularly lacking in self promotional fervour.

  2. Graphic designer – not a great draughtsman

  3. Freelance journalist – people don’t read my blog all that much and it’s free. Seems unlikely anyone would want to pay for same.

  4. Poet – still harbouring thoughts of sleeping with a lady at some point.l I need to be careful, I’m not Philip bloody Larkin after all, am I.

  5. Novelist – most of them starve to death, intellectually if not physically

  6. Pornographer – probably end up spending more time with editors, web owners, ‘models’ and my fellow perves than I do with my bloody colleagues already.

  7. Full time doley vermin – associated feelings of self doubt might just push me over the edge + daytime TV is rubbish.

  8. Cinematic auteur – let’s walk before we can run OK?

Actually I wouldn’t mind being a conceptual artist – it really is money for old rope once you’ve made it, but unfortunately it seems you have to spend at least 10 years hanging around tedious installations smoking rollies and talking crap about the semiotics of post-industrialism first. Plus, like many fields where the difference between success and failure lies in the hands of a few old ponces rather than the democratic forces of the marketplace being a member of ‘the club’ is pretty much essential. You ain’t going to get very far as a conceptualist without having been to art school first, no matter how challenging, vibrant or ‘bleakly disturbing’ your stuff is. Besides, despite fancying Tracy Emin most of them sound like utter crashing bores, and you’d have to become one as well. Imagine the scene – there you are at a party and some bint comes over to talk to you because she’s vaguely perplexed by your donkey jacket / ripped chinos combo and is also vaguely thinking about bumming a fag off of you :-

“So, Hi, what do you do”

“I’m an artist” (+3 pts : score +3 (you might be famous))

“ Wow, what kind”

“Well I don’t like to put labels on myself but most of my recent works have been conceptual installations” (+1 pt : score +4 (sounds a bit grumpy, but you never know)

“Crikey – what sort of things do you do”

“Well the medium is irrelevant but I’ve recently been looking to externalise the dialectic of inter-being between the en-franchised but captive elements within society and the free elements which they seek to control” (-2 pts : score : 2 (don’t know what he’s on about but it’s obviously bollocks))

“Crikey, and how did that express itself”

“I re-created a dole office in an underground car-park using pulped copies of Hello and Private Eye” (-2 pts : score : 0 (bollocks and derivative))

“So, er, so you must know a lot of other artists in the same field, y’know, Damien, Rachel, Tracy . . . ”

“No, not really” (-3pts : score : -2 (Billy no mates as well))

“And does it pay the bills then, doing this?”

“No” (-1,000 pts : score -1,003 (need I say more))


So maybe I won’t become a conceptual artist after all. Weighing up the various options, balancing what I can actually do against what I’d like to do against what actually might keep me in shoe trees and wine gums there are really only 2 actual possibilities. Graphic designer poked it’s head above the parapet at one point, I used to wield a mean Photoshop mouse back in the day (like 10 years ago) but ultimately you’re still working in an office most of the time. No the only 2 real options are Novelist or Pornographer.

Novelist or Pornographer . . . tricky, tricky, tricky. Have to come back to that one I think.

Friday, April 22, 2005

Why oh why

Went to the White Hart last night and, oh what a surprise got completely ming-monged. Who’d have thought eh? Actually it wasn’t my fault because it was open till 12 and therefore is cheating. Did go swimming first, so the eight pints of cockney fizzy keg I consumed don’t count, right.

On the plus side I did stumble home and unthinkingly plug the telly in, which miraculously worked. I also weed in the toilet with no water, which didn’t. Could have been worse s’pose ;-)

Loose End

What shall I do this weekend – I’m completely at a loose end . . . somebody think of something I can do, and I’ll do it if I can. Sort of like Duncan Dares but hopefully more along the lines of daring to go to the cinema, or daring to go and eat a Vietnamese or something equally unchallenging. Still I’m in your hands . . .

Actually I may be doing nothing at all because I don’t have my wallet with me. I’m assuming I left it behind this morning, but I may have left it on the street somewhere last night. Here’s hoping, eh?

Wednesday, April 20, 2005

Nice weather for ducks.

The Panster got home last night to find some unusual meteorological conditions – to whit it was raining in his living room. A quick check revealed fm1 on the roof with an emergency plumber. At some point during the day the 1½ inch water pipe from the building water tank had sprung a leak, and physics being physics the water had proceeded to follow gravity and deposit itself downstairs. And this isn’t clean water. Well it was probably clean in the tank but after it’s been filtered through 2 false ceilings and 100 years of dust and pigeon shit it was the colour of iced tea. Or in fact any tea. The smell was pretty special as well. To cut a long story short, things that will need to be done are :-

  • All carpets replaced

  • One quite expensive rug replaced

  • Ceiling pulled down and rebuilt

  • One wall re-plastered

  • Sofa replaced

  • TV replaced

  • Video replaced

  • Digital Box replaced

  • Completely rewired

  • Total redecoration
Now you may think that this sounds like a bit of a bummer, but it’s not all bad, for two reasons.

No 1 :

Note the phrase “building water tank”. Indeed. None of this is Pan’s responsibility and we were just about to redecorate anyway. So for putting up with a bit of inconvenience we get a nice new living room, hopefully for nowt.

No 2 :

Pan rules the gym!

Actually he doesn’t but following a gym session yesterday of unusual length and pain inducing intensity Pan was today victorious in producing a rowing session of not only noticeably less agonising than normal, but also easily his best ever performance. OK, an improvement of 1.5% may not sound like much, but when you are really trying to push it out that’s quite a bit. Probably more of a psychological breakthrough, but it’s all good.

And as if that wasn’t enough of a thrill looking in the mirror today there was very much the premonition of . . . dare I say it . . . the outline of what . . . might be . . . some sort of . . . abdominal musculature. ‘AVE IT!


  1. Stop worrying about the gym

  2. Do something about these mood swings. Paroxetine perhaps?

  3. Stop referring to myself in the third person. Pan thinks it make you sound like a whack-job. Or at the very least like a raving egomaniac.

Tuesday, April 19, 2005


Feeling a bit low today. Bit low . . . crawling underneath the rocks on the bottom of the sea is more like it.

Actually there was a big long mean post here, but I mean really, it wasn’t healthy. I shall take Andrea’s advice and breathe. It wasn’t a very calming sort of a post, more of a sort of incoherent rolling napalm strike of vitriol and self abuse. So instead I’ll boil my thoughts down to some more digestible and less apoplectic bullet points :-


  1. Finding a new job = stressful

  2. Finding a new job knowing the old one’s a goner = additionally stressful

  3. Interviews = not much fun really

  4. Agents = last lepers from hell

  5. But it’s just a task that must be done at the end of the day

  1. Nazi gym regime having no apparent affect

  2. Orthorexic diet also having no affect and making me very, very boring too.

  3. Stomach still like enormous vanilla syllabub dropped from 3rd floor into middle of 1960’s style Lionel Blair dance routine.

  4. Am addicted to the gym

  5. Hate the gym

  1. Have to go to the gym to feel ‘normal’

  2. Don’t enjoy lovely food like I used to as can’t stop converting everything into Carbs, Fat and kC and then into crunches / minutes rowing per mouthful.

  3. Eating delicious non nutritionally balanced, high fat, high salt, low fibre food inducing intense feelings of weakness, worthlessness and guilt.

  4. Total failure to give up drinking and smoking negating all fringe health benefits. And making me feel guilty as well. And fat.

  1. How much of a workout is the average wank? Don’t forget that as a bloke it’s not all in the mind - it’s all gotta be replaced from somewhere.

  2. Is smoking 20 cigarettes / week really any healthier than 20 / day or am I just kidding myself?

  3. With regard to question 1 could you make some sort of equivalence chart : 10 minutes spent thinking about Edith Bowman = 38 seconds on level 7 of the rowing machine? Please let the answer be yes.


  1. Stop worrying, have a fag and calm down.

  2. Go to the gym in the morning as well. Think about buying some an-biotic zero fat, high carb, high protein food replacement powder. Increase observance of wobbling gut in mirror to 3 times a day. Eat more salads and go to bed feeling miserable.

  3. Do nothing. Worry.

Monday, April 18, 2005

Back in the Jug Agane . . .

Arse, bugger, fuck.

Got canned again on Friday.

Or if not canned then told that the project was now so far behind on the technical front 9not my bit) that unless something miraculous happened in the next month the whole thing was going to be pulled and I was for the chop. Hence Pan off to the shredder, yet again. Third time in 14 months. To be honest I’m getting quite used to it.

As ever the exact reasons for what has gone wrong are hard to pin down . . . oh, yeah, no, they’re not hard to pin down . . . it’s because certain people in the IT department have simply failed to perform the actions required of them to make the project happen. It’s a mystery to me, but there’s one person who I can definitely put my finger on : IT ‘guru’ (shaved head, black shirt, bullying aggressive manner, grotesquely overweight, stream of consciousness geek speak bullshit) – you know the type – who has particularly failed to perform. Spend £300K on an unnecessarily complicated solution and then do *Absolutely Nothing* with it for 4 months, refuse all access to other departments so that eventually everything gets cancelled because the technical units to make things happen are simply non-existent and there are no plans to make them existent. Do you get into trouble for this? Does anyone call you a fat incompetent cunt and fire your lardy ass immediately? Or do you in fact get promoted while the only person in your team who actually performs the tasks she’s supposed to gets made redundant?

Anyone who’s ever worked in a corporate before should have no trouble picking out which of the two options is the case. So because this repellent sack of shit is incapable of performing the tasks required of him adequately (or at all for that matter) Pan is being shipped back to the Gulags. AGAIN.

I should have filed a complaint against the shitwit months ago when I had the chance . . . still you live and learn, and this is what I learnt : If someone makes a threat of physical violence against you in a meeting, don’t let it slide. Have them booted out. It may seem harsh but it’s the only way – anyone who’s so out of control and so stupid as to do something like that in front of witnesses is obviously a thundering muttfuck and will end up buggering up your project in the end one way or another. It’s not a slip or a mistake, it’s a sign that under the covers lies the soul of a disintegrating psycho with no more idea of responsibility and commitment than an overly caffeinated baboon sitting in a bathtub full of cocaine.

But that’s enough ranting. It’s just one of the unwritten laws of the workplace – idiots get promoted and people who actually know what they’re on about get fired. You’d think companies would go to the wall on a regular basis because of this, but of course it’s not true – if everyone is doing the same ridiculous things the playing field remains level. Of course the company that did in fact somehow learn to identify and reward the good guys whilst simultaneously spotting and firing the butt monkeys would instantly become the champion of the world. Ho hum . . .

Things after all could be worse. For example :-

Berlin 1945

I could be in the F├╝hrerbunker instead. Now there’s somewhere that wasn’t very jolly. As you might have guessed I went to see Downfall,12084,1440227,00.html at the weekend, and very powerful it is too. It’s strange how you can almost feel sympathy for these monsters, trapped in their bolthole with the Russians closing in and the realisation that there was simply no way out. What’s interesting is that for some of them there is the fear of what the allies (for which read the Russians) are going to do with them, but for others their personal danger was secondary – their horror was that National Socialism would no longer exist after they were dead. Strange stuff indeed. Creepy.

And I’d never been to the Screen on Baker Street before. Like all Screens they understand something about going to the cinema that UCI & Odeon etc never will – if you see a kack movie you hold it against the cinema as well as the makers. After all they’re the ones who chose to put this drivel on in the first place. So screen cinemas usually very good. The Screen on Baker Street is, to be fair, a bit on the wee side – in fact it’s a midget. But perfectly formed. And they always have a decent selection of junk to but outside, including BOOZE. It’s like a time warp, but a good one.


There’s nothing I can say which can adequately describe my hatred of Islington council. What’s wrong with them? Why are they such fascists? Why do their threatening letters arrive 2 weeks after they’re dated, or never at all? Why am I so incompetent that I’m always in a mess over the council tax. Aaaarrgggggghhh! Feeling a but stressed to be frank.


Who gives a rat’s ass. Let me say that again. Who gives a rat’s ass. Because let’s be honest here – there are 2 choices. Labour Traitor Scum or Evil Tory Leeches. For all people bang on about it, voting Small Orange isn’t going to help, and as for those other deluded souls Respect and The Greens, well, they can stand all they like, vote for them if you want to, but they’re still never going to win a single seat, let alone anything else. With regard to UKIP, Veritas and the remainder imbecilica knee jerk tidemark scum, if you’re thinking of voting for any of them then your head should have exploded by now. If not, just keep reading it will, and about time too.

So, realistically it’s down to red muck or blue muck. Decisions decisions. Basically here’s my problem : The Labour party have betrayed everything they stood for, and have betrayed the British people. They wilfully attacked the BBC, an institution with more value and moral fibre in Radio Shetland than in the whole of Westminster for purely personal short term gain, they’ve got us involved in a ridiculous war causing untold deaths, pretty much condemning Iraq to civil war and government by religious nutbags (Sadaam Hussein = bad, so who cares if 20 million women will be locked up in their houses forever) and world hatred for Britain, they’ve overseen the chavification of Britain on an untold scale, and their idea about security cards is so backward and blatantly a power grabbing totalitarian act I’m surprised we aren’t just all laughing in their faces, and yet, and yet, and yet. There’s just one problem. It’s the Tories for flips sake.!!! I spent 18 years with them in charge. NEVER NEVER NEVER AGAIN. They’re just disgusting – beyond arrogant, beyond stupid, beyond everything even reminiscent of moral or decent or even human. And now the chief demon in the coven is in charge. There is just no way anyone who isn’t a galloping nazi could even think about voting for these . . . these . . . these . . . words fail me. How could you? Anyone who remembers they slime strewn reign of terror could surely only ever want to smash every single Tory MP in the face until their teeth come out of the back of their heads rather than vote for them? And Tony’s no better. Traitor!

Oh God, I’m going to have to vote Small Orange – there’s simply no other option. Well, actually, I do have an out – my MP is the never so lovely, but not actually a weasel spined snivel crow like most of them but the wonderfully unreconstructed Jeremy Corbyn. Jeremy is of course somewhat deranged, I’m sure in his mind it’s only a matter of time before Militant Tendency is readmitted to the Labour Party, but at least he didn’t vote for the bloody war, at least he’s on Tony’s top ten most hated MPs list. At least he’s not a backstabbing traitor. What to do. Not that it really matters. Tony’s getting back in and there’s simply nothing any of us can do about it. And the terrible thing is that no matter how dreadful they are, the opposition is even worse. AArrrrrrggghhhh.

Friday, April 15, 2005

I never really meant for this blog to almost exclusively about my trips to the gym, and when it’s not about them about nutrition and how much fat I’ve eaten. And on that note today has been pretty weird so far :-

1 x apple
1 x plum
1 x latte (semi skimmed)
1 x low fat yogurt
½ x bottle isotonic Lucozade
1 turkey escalope with olive sauce
1 x portion cous-cous
2 x tomatoes
¼ bagel with smoked salmon & cream cheese
1 x Tune (menthol lozenge)
1 x sachet Heinz French Mustard, sucked out of it’s packet at my desk. I feel sick
2 x cups of tea

OK, it doesn’t seem like much but remember that *ANYTHING* dairy is going to be minimum 10% carb and 10% protein, and that’s by mass not relative composition . . .

Better do a particularly punishing gym routine today to assuage guilt. Wednesday went to the gym before and after work. Think I’m developing some sort of a problem. I know I have quite a compulsive personality so I need to be reminded sometimes when I’m beginning to flip out. Basically just going to the gym every day and doing an 80-100 minute workout is no longer enough – that’s entry level. If I miss a day or do a short set I feel guilty. To actually feel virtuous I have to do more, like doing 90 minutes before work and then swimming after or something. I wouldn’t mind if I looked like flipping Brad Pitt, but instead I look pretty much like Lardlad, same as always. What’s the point? Who wants to put off that fatal heart attack for another 5 years if it’s 5 years of going to the gym, agonising over eating ¼ of a bagel (approaching Aniston levels of insanity) and SLEEPING ALONE EVERY SINGLE NIGHT FOR THE REST OF YOUR LIFE.

I think that should be the name of my book – a sort of ‘how not to’ guide to modern living. And the worst thing is that my whole world is starting to fill up with filthy gym kit. It’s on the floor at home, its on the chairs, it’s down the back of my desk, it’s in my draws, it’s EVERYWHERE – wringing wet, rank, stinking, beastliness. Ugh.

Also had to take yesterday off due to a pounding migraine - first one I’ve had in years and years. Quite alarming – the whole left side of head felt like it was pulsating and my skull was actually enlarging. Plus my left arm kept going numb. Probably should go and see the doctor, but I’m not going to, because I am a man. It is written in the book of yore that the only acceptable reasons for going to the doctor are :-

a) Limb injury so severe that you can’t actually walk / lift arm above waist level
b) Vomiting blood continuously for longer than a week
c) Dose of the pox

Monday, April 11, 2005


Well I don’t know – got absolutely blunted last week after swimming but still made it into work on time. Not bad, even if I did wake up on the sofa. Speaking of swimming, I think, if anything, that the outdoor pool at the Oasis centre is too hot, rather than too cool. If you’re ploughing up and down rather than just dicking about it makes all the difference. Plus it’s supposed to be one of London’s dirtiest pools, bacterially speaking, but I swallow over a pint a week and nothing bad has happened so far . . .


Speaking of swallowing and bad things I saw Maria Full of Grace on Thursday. I don’t of course mean that the film was bad, but about bad things happening to people. Some of the scenes were the most unsettling and sad I’ve seen since Lilja-4-Ever and the desperation, fear and helplessness of the mules is spectacularly well communicated throughout. Not exactly an enjoyable couple of hours, but a very rewarding and worthwhile one none the less.


So I didn’t have a good weekend really. Well actually it was fun in parts, but also quite upsetting. Had a blazing stand-up knock-down row with flatmate 1 which ended in a lot of door slamming by her, and me informing her, and by inference, anyone with ears in a 200 yard radius that as far as I was concerned she could ‘get fucked’ and then storming out of the flat. Haven’t lost my rag like that for years and years. I blame the drink.

Did end up having a nice walk through the park to calm down though, and of course everything is forgotten by now. Weird.

Dr Qui

Finally managed to see the new Dr Who and really enjoyed it, but I have a question. Why does the Tardis always arrive where some major big bad is going down? Is there some sort of trouble-o-sniffer circuit which has become jammed on? How come the Tardis never randomly deposits them at, say, 12th century Rhyl where nothing has happened, and nothing ever will happen, if you don’t count someone stealing Alleurhyd’s ladder in about 8 centuries. But that’s a minor niggle – it’s basically cool, and quite scary. On a much more terrifying note check out Colin Baker these days. Scary! But then he is 63 or something.

Tuesday, April 05, 2005


Here’s a depressing quote from the Guardian :

“On Sunday, the second episode of BBC1's Sarah Waters adaptation Fingersmith lost around a quarter of last week's audience. The costume drama had 3.7 million viewers, against 9.2 million for Midsomer Murders on ITV1.”

I’m not so worried about losing audience numbers, everyone lost viewers on account of the (allegedly) nice weather and all. What’s truly horrible is that 9.2 people wanted to watch Midsomer Murders.


I suppose I shouldn’t be so harsh towards my fellow citizens. If they want to wallow in some antediluvian crypto-fascist bullshit, who am I to gainsay them? Oh, hold on, I’m seemingly the only person left with even an ounce of taste, so who am I to gainsay them : God Almighty, that’s who.

You might not think it’s particularly crypto-fascist yourself, but think about it’s deeper meanings – a world which seeks to eulogise the 1950’s emotionally suppressant values of an England that never really existed anyway, obsessed by appearance and public reputation, where everything runs smoothly marred only by occasional outbursts of obscene violence and ruled over from on high by a shadowy supercilious father figure . . . .

It’s beginning to sound quite sinister isn’t it :

Scene 1 (Interior) A sunny morning in the Kitchen of Honeydew cottage. Mrs Funnybunch is having tea with the Vicar of St Giles (Father Aneurism) and Miss Trumpeter

Mrs Funnybunch : “More tea, Vicar?”

Father Aneurism : “Ooh – don’t mind if I do . . . by the way, I hardly like to mention it but have you seen that Suzie from Nell Lane recently?”

Miss Trumpeter “She’s one who’s no better than she should be if you know what I mean”

Mrs Funnybunch : “And what about her young man, I wouldn’t like to meet him on a dark night”

Father Aneurism : “I couldn’t agree with you more Mrs Funnybunch”

Miss Trumpeter : “Yes, and they say he’s got all this money from heaven knows where. It’s not right, someone should do something, Vicar”

Father Aneurism : “You know Austin from the Young Farmers was saying exactly the same thing to me only the other day – perhaps you could put it on the agenda for the next ‘Parish Council’ meeting? Eh? Eh? A-ha-ha-ha-hah!”

Mrs Funnybunch : “Right you are Vicar. More tea?”

etc etc etfuckingcetera

And this dreary crap is what the majority of the British telly watching masses choose to sedate themselves with. Still not convinced? I’ve got 3 words for you : John Nettles.

Hold on, that’s only 2 words. What’s missing? : Wanker.

Tossers (part 2)

With regard to yesterday here (in reverse order) is Pan’s top 5 hateful gym types :-

5) ‘Yoga Lady’ : Excessively bendy yoga ladies who spend 2 hours contorting themselves and then saunter off without performing any other exercise. Fringe benefit : bad thoughts.

4) ‘Black Sox’ : Usually a bloke, but occasionally a woman, who wears their work socks in the gym. What are they trying to say? “I care so little about this exercise thing I might as well not be here? I haven’t washed any of the rest of my kit either but I have to wear that (NB Pan has never been guilty of this, hem hem) ? My feet stink already? Gross dudes. Fringe benefit : none

3) ‘Cross Trainer Bore’ : Machine hoggers (usually, but not always, a woman) who spend 45 minutes on a machine starting about, ooh 5.45 to hit that gym starting peak smack in the middle – but remember to pedal so slowly there is no danger of getting into the cardio zone, or even the weight loss zone. Fringe benefit :- get there first and piss them off.

2) ‘Free Weights Only’ : Always a bloke, usually in a pair who do a minimal or non existent warm up and then spend an hour in front of the mirror doing bicep curls and similar. Ugh. Fringe benefit : knowledge they would get exactly the same benefit if they only did 20 minutes.

1) ‘Shits’ : Horribly fit people who wear tight kit and do 40 blistering minutes on the treadmill and only develop a little glow. And they all know each other. Fringe benefit : Imaging that if you keep this up then one day you too will be able join their hallowed ranks and be officially allowed to 1000-yard-stare newcomers, while regularly engaging in HI-NRG orgiastic sex with the instructor(s) of your choice. This is an illusion.

Monday, April 04, 2005


Time flies when you’re having fun . . . it’s been 3 weeks since my last confession blog and I can’t really think what if anything I’ve done with the time. OK, I went skiing to never so lovely Val Thorens – fantastic skiing, looks like an inner city ghetto plopped down in the middle of the 3 valleys where my skiing was just great. Most of the time. I had this completely obsessive ski instructor called Antonio – Mussolinni more like - and while I can safely say I loathed him, he did teach me an awful lot about skiing. It really doesn’t help when, as you lose it completely for the 5th time that morning and end up lying in the snow hitting it with your pole in frustration (bv the way very bad form to show such frustration and bad temper) instead of offering sage advice and words of encouragement your instructor instead clasps his hands to his head and moans “Oh my God – why am beeeing puuunisshed like theees”. And don’t forget – you’re paying him, not the other way around.

Still, I had a pretty good week – only a couple of truly spectacular wipe outs, including one where I must have gone about 200 yards on my back with absolutely no way of stopping. Actually as that was a particularly steep part of a really mogulled up and icy red I was quite content to go down it horizontally. And I wasn’t the only one. Top moment : S who has 20 years of extreme skiing experience and dresses entirely in black excepting his orange racing boots managing to cross his skis on an easy blue, try to recover, lurch forward, get it back, lose it again and totally head-plant – whilst being filmed . Yes!

Anything else to add – not really – quite a high injury week, saw 2 blood wagons, one grizzly looking unconscious, one large patch of red snow (usually a VERY bad sign) and my friend A nearly did for herself by spectacularly losing it and landing on her binding. Ouch. Trust me – it’s a very nasty moment when you look back up the slope, see them halfway up not moving and in the 1’ 30” it take you to get your skis off and trudge back up to them they don’t move so much as an inch. Scary stuff indeed.


Got absolutely trolleyed again on Saturday, despite my best intentions. Went to the Faltering Fullback (horrible name) in FP, which is practically the only halfway decent boozer in the area to meet Luce early doors despite having been out VERY VERY late on Friday night as well. It’s basically pretty grim, but it does have a halfway decent beer garden at the back which is not too unpleasant, and as I indicated earlier the opposition is pretty damn poor around there. Anyhoo the guys at the next table were absolutely wasted, totalled completely blunted. I can only assume they’d been on some sort of all day bender as they were utterly hammered and completely tripping as well. The large multi coloured slinky (yes really) that they had with them had become UTTERLY FASCINATING. I don’t see how you can expect to get served in the pub when you can’t stop talking about how the pretty colours keep moving up and down, but somehow they managed it.

So had a quick 4 pints there with Luce & Pats and moved on to Nellie Deans about 8ish and continued to get properly stuck in as they say. Ack ack ack, Think I got home about 4.30, but not really sure.


Sunday was Like a Nightmare. I didn’t manage to get myself off the sofa (where I woke up) all day until about 8.30 when I crawled (oh the shame) to the Home of the Venerable and Inscrutable Colonel for a grease injection. It was absolutely vile and I ate every last bit of it. I also managed to miss the repeat of Dr Who, but did manage to catch episode 2 of Fingersmith. I read the book a while ago and it is a cracking good romp if you like that sort of thing, and frankly, what’s not to like – evil villains, tight corsets, wicked uncles, cackling crime monkeys, feisty heroines, brutal lunatic asylums and a hefty shot of saphic lurve as well. Who could resist that??


Flatmate 1 deserves a special pat on the back : getting off with not one but *2* random blokes outside Crystal’s kebab shop on the Holloway road in the wee hours of Saturday morning. Double chav points!


Sometime you just have to leave the gym because it’s just packed with unbelievable wankers. I get to the gym and there are no warm up bikes left because every single one is taken up by some designer stubbled track suit wearing numpty. I work in a building where people wear suits to the annual company picnic – who the fuck has stubble?? Anyway, not a problem I can warm up with a cross trainer instead. Anyway, just as I’m getting going these idiots quit their little bike ride (they must have done all of 5 minutes (I’d seen them earlier in the changing room)) and – oh what a surprise - head over immediately to the free weights where they proceeded to spend the next hour monopolising both weight benches doing bicep curls and ‘spotting’ eachother.

I go to that gym pretty much every day, I know who’s serious, who’s trying, and who’s just a galloping fart bag, and I’ve never seen these guys before. Who the fuck goes to an alien gym and then spends an hour prancing around doing bicep curls. Cunts that’s who. I wouldn’t even mind so much but it’s such a waste of time. 3 x 10 reps at maximum weight 3 times a week is pretty much the top of the range efficient work out rate for muscle build. Spending an hour doing the same thing? All they’re doing is damaging the muscles and wasting their time. So I suppose I should be grateful for that at least. Anyway I was so pissed off with these guys that I split my shorts doing over aggressive lunges, which provided me with the perfect excuse to quit my workout and leave. I can finish it tomorrow. If I know anything about gym wankers it’s this – you won’t see them in there 2 days running.

And you won’t see them doing any cardio and you’ll NEVER see them doing any stretching.

In fact that’s a not bad rule of thumb to judge the people who are serious about the gym and those who are just playing. Serious people stretch. Of course you can go too far – for every person who’s doing the right amount there’s some chick in a tight top and a pair of peddle pushers doing extravagantly thigh spreading half hour yoga moves right in front of the weights area. I hate them too.