Saturday, 25 June 2011

Beat Poetry of the Unbeaten

Evening, I'm in the garden,
Looking up at the sun,
I feel like life is slowly ending,
When it's only just begun,
I left school, left life,
Just the pen and the paper,
The occasional friend who'll say:
'I'll see you later' but they won't,
For I bore them, strangely deranged,
Reading back through the book,
So I can write another page, but better,

Learn from mistakes, get wise,
For this time I'll rise,
From those others, two-faced,
I'm telling you-
Watch this space.

Tuesday, 21 June 2011

The Mother of all Cancellations

So anybody who knows me quite well will know what I do for a living, that being that I write books, run a leaflet distribution business, and work in the family bouncy castle business. Working with inflatables, to put it briefly, is as fun as it sounds. However heavy a giant piece of plastic, its blower, and industrial petrol generator are, it's totally worth having to lug them around and deal with the stupidest of the British public, just so you can bounce around for a bit.

Call me childish.

But the majority of the money made from the business is from rentals. Renting a bouncy castle entails lugging all the equipment out to a strangers house/business, setting it up for them, taking their money, and for insurances sake begging them not to blow themselves up in the process.

Recently, we took a booking from a pub in the contender-for-quaintest-town-of-the-year village Stoke Poges (Not pronounced like the Irish folk band, but literally P-O-JES.). With barely a thousand houses in the village, the idea was that we give them a bouncy castle, they say to all the people in the vicinity that they have a bouncy castle, people flock to the pub, and in the process the pub sell a ton of drinks.

It's not revolutionary, but it's business.

Now, if you've ever had the awkward yet enjoyable moment of trying to be serious, but absolutely pissing yourself laughing down the phone at someone, you'll probably have a pretty accurate idea of what the following part went like.

We got a call from the pub, them notifying us that the booking was to be cancelled, all nice and polite so that we wouldn't have to waste our time going there. Fair play, that wasn't the funny part. The laugh came when we asked them why the booking was cancelled, and the grave and deadly serious reply came down the phone-line:

"The village, is closed today."

Now whether you're a fan of 'The League of Gentlemen' or not, you'll probably recognize this bout of British quaintness to be rather hilarious - but they were deadly serious.

The village closure had come with news that there was a gypsy wedding happening the same day of rental, and to any American's reading this, or people who aren't familiar with gypsy traveler ways, this will seem like a bit of a strange reason.

The village, having barely a thousand houses and being inhabited mainly by elderly couples probably only has about two and a half thousand people living in it. The town, also being the home of the now deceased traveler,  was being closed off as a no go area due to it being the destination, for over five thousand people. Now I'm not against gypsy folk, but the fact is that they are a group of people, Nazi input or not, who steal, fight, and generally tend to clash with society.

I have nothing against gypsies, but do take this as a lesson learnt. 

They closed a village for this.

You've been warned.


(P.S. Please don't kill me. My Dad's a conservative it's not my fault.)

Wednesday, 15 June 2011

Full House (Part one of a fictional all-nighter.)

The names James and you're joining me at the brink, the start of the end at the edge of the world, it's 6.30 on a Friday night and we've been freed from the relentless shackles of employment to wreak havoc upon our surroundings, to walk the town high as kites to release the build up of five days hard work, and all in the name of alcohol consumption. Anything can happen in the next 72 hours and its likely to be messy, but first:


However much the myth of bingo makes it out to be the domain of old savage women and soft-core gamblers, it's a vital spot for those of us more experienced than the average pisshead. I mean, whoever expected to find oil in the driest place on earth? Same logic really.

The pack this evening is made up of Keith and Eric, both of whom work at the same place I do, not that I'll mention that. Its just not the time. The fourth item in the fantastic four is Ben, a bit of an outsider but a funny bloke, and the one who gets the first round in - such is the attractive nature of the bingo hall. The man who runs the bar seems to have no concept of an economy or profit, and hence sells cold pints for two quid, making Lady Lucks the ultimate place for pre-drinks, not to mention the chance to win a couple quid.

Three and a half rounds in we make the ever so diplomatic decision to leave, subsequent to being asked to leave, due to something in between the yelling 'bingo' three numbers in and flicking crisps at the ugliest people we can see.

And so we jumped into Eric's four-door saloon (Fiona) clocks-a-ticking, and tipsily made our way to the closest service station to get all the supplies we needed for the warm-up, a game learnt from Keith's american friend called 'Edward 40' Hands'. A fifteen pack of Carling and two rolls of duct tape was the order of the hour, and after receiving the goods from the frankly confused and slightly intimidated shop attendant we made our way to the Sports Centre car-park, a dingy flat of tarmac with three or four cars parked up.

Once there, we taped a can of Carling to each hand (Opening them first) and set about the task of drinking them both, unable to do anything apart from dance to the radio and continue the banter from the bingo hall.

Having finished the can taped to my left hand, I was halfway through my right when - somewhere between the macarena and drunkenly attempting to take a leak - I passed out for the first time that night.

Sunday, 12 June 2011

Worlds Weirdest Coincidence

So here's how it works. I live with my parents. It's a fairly big house, three bedrooms, three bathrooms (Originally two and one, but my Dad is addicted to extensions) and as of recent events, my thirty-something brother is living with us. This is all well and good, seeing as I never really grew up with my brother and I really enjoy being with him, but there's a catch.

There's always a catch.

Two days a week, normally Friday and Saturday, the kids come.

There's two of them, Finley: Born 2003, now seven years old, a four-eyed bookworm who during his first year or two everyone thought was a clone of me at that age, and Lola: Born 2007, now four, the noisiest little girl you'll ever meet with the funniest array of faces you'll ever see.

Now my book collection, in it's current state, is in three sections:
1. The books I don't want any-more and am selling to make space for new books.
2. The overflow of books (Mainly ones I haven't read for years) outside my room on the landing.
3. My actual bookshelf, which I'm in the process of cleaning and re-arranging.
I, like most people, happen to have a couple of editions of the Guinness Book of World Records, bought for me as desperate attempts at Christmas presents by distant relatives, that I've flicked through, laughed at, and then condemned to the shelf.

So when I woke up this morning to find the kids clawing through my overflow of books, I didn't mind them sitting there and pawing through the World Records books, except for the fact that for the rest of the morning, all I could hear was the Lords name in vain as they sighted the extremes of life itself.

But it's not what they saw, or the pictures in the book that struck me, it's something that took me a few minutes to realise. I've only got two editions of the record books, one from 2003, and one from 2007. One from the year Finley was born, which he was reading, and one from the year Lola was born, which she was reading.

And that was really weird.

Try as I might to wax lyrical about some far-out metaphor completely made up to tie this all together, I really can't. I just thought it was really quite peculiar.


Thursday, 9 June 2011

The Wombles of Wimbledon Common Are We

So I said to a few people (Enough to start a military coup if it got out of hand. Maybe.) that when my blog got to a thousand views I would post something about my book. A book, may I add, that is coming along slower than a snail that's been caught in traffic due to an untimely road-traffic-accident involving a large heavy, hard to move object, but it is somewhat moving.

So, not wanting to cause any kind of coup d'etat, I shall indulge you.

Having been in this glorious country (England) for quite a while now, and having my (To say the least) interesting hobby of people watching, you seem to notice that the people of this nation are somewhat - insane.

Whether its dressing up as batman and chaining themselves to the Queens residence, or dressing up in a pink tutu and nothing else, despite being a 40 year old man, the British public have never ceased to amaze in everything that is weird, mad, bad, and completely ludicrous.

And for what reason? Because life's too boring. Douglas Adams did it best when he chronicled an Englishman going into space in his night-clothes, and queuing and complaining at every given obstacle, because that's what Englishmen do. They get sick at life, but they carry on.

And so, the aptly named 'Sick.' chronicles the people of England, in a variety of short stories. The accidents, the inconveniences, the inevitabilities, and the humour behind it all, that stops us from dying off and/or topping ourselves.

This all came to mind, in a small example, as I was sent an article, aptly entitled 'Glastonbury boss Michael Eavis regrets Wombles booking'. If you don't find that funny enough as it is, or don't know what Glastonbury is or what the Wombles are, I suggest you click here to read the article.

'Sick' should be available around October time, with free yet awful postal services and the neat-o price of £7.00 sterling ($11.60).


Tuesday, 7 June 2011

How to Lose Friends (And Gain Better Ones)

Granted, I've never been exceptional at making friends.

Although I'm quite good at losing them.

And so, going into my teens with a great want for company and people to talk to, I rushed to what seemed like the most obvious option - Facebook. Looking back, Facebook is now less of a friend-making facility, but more of a good way to communicate with friends you already have, as well as being a socially acceptable addiction.

But it wasn't really enough.

I have my friends, and they're all awesome and good for me in their different special ways, whether it's providing hugs and sympathy when I'm being pathetic, or providing fellowship and arguments when I'm drunk, but I'm guilty of wanting different people. There was a type missing.

I read a lot of books, and learn lots of clever stuff from the internet, stuff that I sometimes feel like I have to pack up all the smart stuff in a little mental box and keep it until I get to snooty English discussions at University.

Then I blogged.

And although it's not as if I was instantaneously surrounded by part-time librarians, I now know more people, interesting people, and to put it in context, I'm going to have tea and scones with the rather beautiful blogger Tegan on Toast and her boyfriend tomorrow.

How did I get this subject? Why am I posting twice in one day?!
In short, I was shown this video by my bi-curious-ginger-friend, and although you might not make the connection, it made me think of you guys.

(And before sexually confused people ask, yes, I'm bisexual, and yes, those dudes are attractive.)

Thanks Everyone!

Notes to Self (Should be actually noted and followed)

Today's post is brought to you by my strange aptitude for not being able to follow my own advice.

Some of you might remember that my first post on this collection of rambles and thoughts was a smallish piece from one of my notebooks on me attempting to gain inspiration for writing by going out side (See 'A Reason For Not Leaving the House').

Now today, struck with the good luck (Yet minor inconvenience, my calendar being empty as always) of being free from the bounds of school, I could stay at home and eat and read and generally do whatever I like, which is the ideal way for any teenage nerd to spend his life (And on days like this I really do). But today, I pushed myself to attempt to do something productive.

As you probably know (Seeing as I don't ever shut up about the damn thing) my book is being released in October, and seeing that I have to finish writing it, edit it, make a final edition and get it printed, I have quite a bit of work to get done. So, I thought, in order to get some writing done instead of writing a paragraph and getting distracted by fore-mentioned and dreaded funny cat videos I ventured forth from the house, portfolio folder in hand to venture off somewhere silent to get some writing done.

Oh, foolish young Lewis. You've made this mistake before lad.

I did consider going to the library, a place sort of intended to be, silent, easy to work in, full of good literature, and of course away from the internet, but I, being the lazy teenager that I am, couldn't be bothered to walk into town, and so made my way to a field.

Why?! What? Are you mental?!

And so I sat there, trying (And ultimately failing) to write, and in all of a couple minutes, I found myself covered in bugs, squinting massively at the white paper, and beginning to break out in a sweat under the sun.

So I went home.

And wrote this.

Don't be surprised if this book is late in coming.

- Lewis