Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Hard Bastard of the Week

You got stabbed? Seeking medical treatment? No, just have a sausage and a bit of a kip and everything will be just dandy.


Thursday, April 03, 2008


It has been a while since I have updated, indeed some time since I have done anything not related to my course. In the first week of so-called "Holidays" I was up in Newcastle enjoying the hospitality of Amy Hunt and Fergus Mackinnon while working as a hired goon for a certain daily in the area. As usual got a lot done, had a few laughs, voxpopped a few unintelligible Geordies, got some primo ideas and advice and left with a slightly better idea of what I'm meant to be doing than before. This is good and it should be encouraged.

In addition to that I have found myself gainfully employed again. I am now a bar. man at a respected club/venue in Nottingham's centre. I like this because they pay me money to sling drinks to metallers, although it does suck that I can't drink any myself. Tantalus, one sympathises. The sheer amount of stuff vis a vis weird customers and characters that hang about would take ages to summarise, so I'll just say that I will get to that some other time.

The big news this month, however, is that Kaki and I are engaged. Apologies to my vast legion of female fans and admirers, but I'm off the market for good. I'd be lying like a mofo if I said it went down exactly the way I'd planned it, but she graciously accepted my offer and now we're betrothed. Next thing is planning how we're going to cope with the immense logistical difficulties of importing either her family from Canada to the UK for the wedding or visa versa. Perhaps we'll have it on some neutral spot in the middle of the Atlantic so nobody can complain. I hear Reykjavik is nice this time of year. We're just going to enjoy being engaged for a time though, before the nerve-spackering stress of planning takes hold.

So this is how it happened: I bought the ring some time ago with the assistance of co-conspirator Salma Conway who agreed to take me to Birmingham's jewellery quarter to make my purchase. I sort of expected the jewellery quarter to look like a Warsaw ghetto in about 1879, but actual it looked a lot like Glenrothes. Nevertheless, we got down to business and after a little while found the perfect one. It was a classy little platinum number with a slim, tapering band ideal for a lass with skinny fingers. In the centre was a gleaming diamond sitting there like the most expensive carbon allotrope you've ever seen. I got a sort of jittery feeling like being tasered by a mall security guard but being too drunk to really feel it - so I bought it and left.

All was well. I hid the ring in a secret place where Kaki would never find it. Occasionally when she was out of the house I would get the ring out and fondle it like a domesticated Gollum. Unfortunately, when you love someone you have to do this thing called "sharing". And sharing also means that you have to tell your other half things, for instance when you buy an expensive engagement ring and then cock up budgeting for it so you run out of money four days before you were supposed to go to Rome, ironically enough where you had planned to present said ring.

I am, by all accounts, a fabulous liar and deceiver, but Kaki has this way of getting through my fibs like some Orwellian interrogator. Anyway, she succeeded in catching me in a lie about my financial situation (much better now since I got paid btw) and went about tearing me apart with a combination of awkward questioning, ranting obscenities and feminine doublespeak. Kaki does have a bit of a temper, and I confess I pushed one of her major buttons by lying to her, but I can honestly say I had never seen her that angry. No - not angry - crazy. Shithouse rat, Grace Jones crazy. She was knocking plates around in the kitchen with a wild-eyed expression and cussing me out when I realised I couldn't put up with the deception any more, went through to the other room, removed my precious from its hiding place and prepared to hand it over. I walked back through to the kitchen and said I could explain everything.

So I whipped it out in our crappy little kitchen, got on one knee and asked her to marry me. Ten minutes of crying later, she agreed. Talk about an emotional rollercoaster. Anyway, everything got resolved in the end, I was vindicated and it was established that I would only lie to Kaki in special situations where it was in her own interest. Like this one.

So there it is, the arse-backwards, clod-like and awkward way I proposed to my soon-to-be wife. It's not the least smooth thing I've ever done but it comes close. Still, she's happy and that's what matters. The way we did it was a lot more real than if I'd performed some big showpiece proposal in Rome anyway. I'm pretty sure she'd have figured it out when I put my good shirt on in any case.