viernes, 10 de diciembre de 2010

"The Stamp of the Feline Pheromone: the pre-ovariless days"

I am acutely aware that I write a lot about myself; I enjoy it, ‘tis a subject of great interest for me. But recently I’ve been deep in the careful observation of a cat. The cat entertains and baffles; its out of the ordinary lifestyle is, quite frankly, bizarre.

The cat’s days are passed under no great pressures, splitting the hours between cleansing itself, playing with itself (not in the sexual manner), eating and shitting in a box, then hiding its faeces under a bed of litter: chocolate Easter eggs of the domesticated feline world.

However, what interests me the most are not the points aforementioned, rather the phenomenon that takes place once the mysterious blanket of change is thrown over its being (and tucked in at the ends). The cat emerges, not as a cat but as a sex crazed nymphomaniac concerned with one thing and one thing only: the quest for satisfaction.

Tables, stairs, beds, bags, shoes, feet (it loves feet…for the obvious potential a toe possesses)…the list has no limits (limitless). It is as if Robert Pattinson was sent blindfolded, most probably naked as well (the two, more often than not, ride hand in hand) into a Sunday evening Mass at an all girls' Catholic boarding school:; an uncut, black and white tribute to pheromones and the suggestive, beautifully sown lexicon of Stephenie Meyer.

Postman Pat’s cat, it appears, did not struggle with the coming of womanhood (maybe because it was a man cat, or conveniently asexual) but instead floated along in a sexless wilderness, suspended above menopause and yet pinned before puberty: its sexual identity stripped crudely from it by the monotonous rhythm of mail delivery; a slave to the royal insignia.

Two very different cats, leading two very different lives, preoccupied by two very different things; neither conscious of the directions they head in.

Moral of the story: “You can’t always get what you want….but you can try sometimes.”

(Next to follow will be the dramatisation of the day I lost both my jobs...and other poor stories)

jueves, 11 de noviembre de 2010

"Chapters, Chaps and Chappetes: the final curtain call"

I had never been kicked out of a home before (save the elderly one..."Sure I'm your grandson..."), that is untill today. Fate has struck yet another cruel blow to my cushioned life, sending goose feathers a flyin’. We was a poison to the house, a menace to the micro-society....a bloody nuisance. Thus, my mentally fragile landlord, emotionally eroded by the constant reminder that he just does not fit, announced:

“I need use your rooms (my compatriot's and mine) for make office and sleep room,” he muttered pathetically to us the other night.

(This space I’ve created here______is reserved for the silence that inevitably followed. Silence is important)

“Ummm, what was that Pablo? You want to use the bathroom? Yes, I presume there is an abundance of loo role; help yourself,” I retorted jovially.

(This space what I´ve created here_____is reserved for the imaginary image of my condescending smile, which I tied on the end of my sentence, like a frilly, patronising ribbon)

“No, I mean say you need leave house soon.”

“Well, well, well Pablo. Firstly, what you have squeaked since sticking your ratty little head around the door has made absolutely no all. But, because I’m intuitive, I’ve come to realise that when you say you want Lebensraum, you really you just want our raums...and ultimately, our constant absence.”

(This space what I´ve created here_____is reserved for the brooding, man-power look I shot at him. This space what I´ve created here_____is reserved for the Orlando Bloom gaze that actually took place)

“Uhhhh, no no no...I sorry (he wasn’t) but need use rooms for work (he didn’t).”

“Please leave this raum now Pablo. That is all." I shot back at him, eyes on fire, skin ice (ice baby) cold and hair tousled conservatively (political peluquería joke, do I dare?) to the left side ( yes, I do).

So, it has come to pass that after the changing of two glorious seasons and one not so toasty one, I must step down from my throne of Constituciónal power, set aside my sceptre, sheath my sword (weyy, lad on tour) and mount my steed (yes, still on tour). I head to greener pastures and yet I feel an aching remorse in leaving behind those I've come to treasure: my Peruvian castle of fruit and veg, my expeditionary force of recyclers that dwell on the corner, loyal servants to cardboard and aluminium....and last but certainly not least, my high-heeled “nights” of confusion that lift my spirits and feed my ego with their faithful cat-calling. A few shall be bitterly missed, all remembered.

So my moral of an episodic chapter will finish by quoting a dear corner-dwelling friend who, whilst softly smiling, whispered: “Freddie, dip a toe in your neighbour’s bath, the water might well be different...but the feeling’s the same.” Time to pull the plug.

lunes, 8 de noviembre de 2010

“I have something to tell you that will blow your mind... ."

"Ok, I lied. I´m 45, balding and have single-handedly collected the entire series of Star Trek on VHS. I tend to spend my Saturday nights at my taxidermy club; I’ve almost finished glazing the eyes of my last dog, Captain Spok, which died aged 4 (I couldn´t wait another 10 years).

Anyway, you look much prettier in real life than in your me or send me an email at (or I can pop round your house sometime...maybe when you´ve finished refurbishing; I personally preferred the paisley patterned curtains).

Lots of love...for ever,

James (but Captain Spock calls me J-Dog...which I think is ironic).”

This is the kind of message that would ensure an early end to my new career in the world of online dating. Yes, I have a new job. Yes, it’s helping Americans find the recognised counter-part of their soul in another human being....or just to prematurely ejaculate in a motel south of Inbredville, New Milton Keynes. Either way, It’s incredibly rewarding.

“But Freddie, surely this goes against all your values regarding reproduction and the North American population?”

“Interesting repost. Rest assured, oh Satan´s champion of me mind, that my priorities still follow the same beaten track. I’m merely employing a touch of damage control: minimising the percentage of children who´s father is also their first cousin once removed.”

“Oh, ok, fantastic news. Well done.”

“Thank you. I think so.”

You may or may not be interested to hear that my bedside reading has been dominated not by the breathtaking prose of D.H. Lawrence but the exciting proposals and inevitably empty promises of such authors as David DeAngilo and Grant Adams, most famous for his work “Net2Bed”. I’ve also done a little research in this area. I am hoping to release my product, titled “BackstreetPharmacy2BedOrBush”, in the not too distant future. Each to their own eh.

So, laissez faire attitudes to unconsented sex aside, I’m busy helping those that find it difficult to find a balance in their lives. “Being a CEO of two companies, that I started, all before the age of 35, means I often find it hard to mix work and play.” Poor chaps. I believe it’s about helping those in this world that ask for it, not those that most need it, or get someone else to ask for them.....thank you very much Red Cross for tarnishing the precious two minutes I have between episodes of Frasier to be brainwashed by the frilly materialistic trappings of my beautiful Western world.

“Moral of our Monday Morning Story”: Charity starts in The States....but tends to finish in one. Write that down...or click ‘save’ somewhere on your screen (Yes, I’m aware it’s been quite the sibilance session today....and what? I like alliteration, who doesn’t).

martes, 28 de septiembre de 2010

The Austrian attitude to wine: "full-bodied and 14yrs'll keep"

Sitting in the sun, drinking coffee, watching little Cafayateans squirrel around us, we planned our next steps. ‘Twas time to visit a vineyard or two and lay pillage to their “tasting” cellars. I asked some hippy artist, deep in his painting, whether there was a closing time. He informed me nothing closed untill around ten at night. I was later to find out that, on top of being shit at art, he was also lying. Only two remained open to some good quaffing:

“Good evening sirs,” a cork sized woman with fairly dark skin and brilliantly white teeth greeted us. (For your future reference: maybe it is best that you assume all people greeted or engaged in spoken words, from this point on, are of the aforementioned description).

“, may I say, good evening to you to, suspiciously small wine harvesting woman. I will be frank with you Pablita, I haven’t done this before (or can’t remember.lad), could you possibly talk me through it please?” I asked her...a request that rang bells of other first times...but, alas, without recording equipment.

Off we trotted on a little tour of their museum. The museum functioned, in our eyes, as a polite pausing stop before we laid pillage to their tasting show, as you will, that we possibly gave a shit about a bunch of copper barrels and some dusty corkscrews. I even asked Pablita what significance a bottle, on display, from 1960 had. She told me “none” and that the winery wasn’t even in action then. "Why did you even place it there then Pablita? To make us aware that wine was in existance at that time?" A truly vintage shite museum in conclusion. We were not there to act as culture vultures though; sponges we would be. (I will add that nothing of great interest followed: we tasted a little, drunk a lot and bought a little-due to post drink guilt and small, shiny-teethed cork women mesmerization. Oh, and we were stalked by a league of very French French girls. "Have you heard of effervescence? No? ...Malbec or Cabernet Sauvignon?").

Although this bears little importance to our trip, I have to add that whilst writing this I spent the afternoon passing so much wind that someone was forced to spray the whole office with its finest loo freshener. The Pablobian work force assumed it was the trainees, who had been thick in a day of training (as trainees do), but ney ‘twasn’t, ‘twas I. Fools.
I joined in on the complaining....
“Bloody nuisance they are Pablo...faffing around our office, filling it with there unemployed odour.” I remarked contemptuously.
It is the small victories in life that will accumulate, the larger ones only compete.

Overall morals of these particular stories: vineyard museums and Saltean vagrant artists.No. Phantom office-based flatulence.Yes.

martes, 21 de septiembre de 2010

"The Game": a beginners guide to picking up hitchhikers

Try as I might to scrape my mind of any residual memories from the crusade, which have recently been evading my pen, I am still missing pieces of the jigsaw puzzle. These pieces are undoubtedly fragile; you try desperately to file them away safely from any proceeding chemical that might try and wipe the slate clean. Incidentally, it this latter aspect that has engraved itself rather clearly in my conscience/fading conscience:

We had driven from Cachi (small village at the foot of large mountains and edge of large desert) to Cafayate (village in centre of valley filled with wine/the means to make it) for what seemed like six hours (because it had been) on what cannot be described as roads or even tracks for that matter. Yet, the Don ate them up and we flew past the chameleon views and diligently working saltanas who would rest down their sticks, had they been hitting a goat or cow, their hoes, had they been doing what ever it is you’d want to do with a hoe (the tool that is), and wave at us. Naturally, we would wave back in a regal fashion ‘n’ all: one doesn’t bend the wrist but merely rotate the whole hand.

I have just become aware that my intentions were set on describing the “latter aspect”, but something has cropped up quite unexpectedly and so I think I’ll put ink to this memory instead:

We were not all that far from Cafayate, cruising along, leaving a wake of dust and, consequently, very dusty locals, when, low and behold, we approached some more hitchhikers (they tended to be people from the middle of nowhere looking to get somewhere). We had past a few already and had decided that were we to reach some more, we ought to give them a lift....only to make ourselves feel good, that’s what charity is all about (based on this, it doesn’t take a genius to work out what “charity starting at home” is all about then). Therefore, I pulled the Don to a stop and wound up my window so that they could hear but not touch me.

“Bonjour my little family of coco-pops, what be your destination? I am assuming you are looking for a lift?” I chirped brightly.
(Might I add at this point that my face was glowing with good-will and I wore a smile that said “hey little boys, don’t be a afraid, you can get in my car and we’ll go to never(have.I.)everland” but my mind and my compatriate’s both said, “Oh fuck, we’ve stopped the Don next to a mother and her three young children. One is a baby, the other two appear to be no more than five but, being in the country and a tad malnutritioned, are probably closer to twenty-four years old (mystery solved). Furthermore, they all seem to have avoided a shower/river for the past week and one of the kids has a nose that is functioning as a tap.”)
The family said nothing following my line of questions.

“Ummmm, ok. In which case, I will have a Quarter Pounder with fries and my co-pilot will have a Big Mac. Any drinks? Yes, thank you for asking, we’ll have two Coke’s please. Large.” I said to them. I was fairly pleased with myself. Too right, it was an amusing line, utterly lost, unfortunately, on are friends....the South American version of ‘Snap, Crackle and Pop’.
“We go to San Carlos please sir,” she eventually asked of us. She may not have added the “sir” but the narcissistic part of my mind (most of it, the section not focused on looking for a reflective surface) tends to translate and filter what comes in and out.
“Well, of course, by all means, hop aboard. To San Carlos then....I assume that’s on the way to Cafayate? If not, you WILL all have to evacuate the car and resume your places under that tree to our right.”I replied.
She then told me that it was.

I proceeded to try and make some conversation but we were white, wearing red and blue was all too much for them right now; the following ten minutes were spent in relative silence while the children stared at us in disbelief....we must have seemed like gods to them. I was absolutely fine with that. So, when they finally left, after filling the Don with the smell of poverty, I told them:

“Go forth in peace my little brown brothers and may the sun shine down on you whilst you labour diligently in a field.”
It wasn’t meant to be inspiring....we didn’t want them to get ideas about education, god forbid.

The next 10km were driven with halo’s of smugness...and windows of wide-openness.

Moral of the story: “charity”.

jueves, 16 de septiembre de 2010

"Two young men turn on Don McLean and enjoy the ride"

Having made our prayers, slept enough, and with caffeine pulsing irrationally through our our veins, we rented a gloriously white Chevrolet Corsa fuelled by “Super Nafta”, which incidentally lived up to its title by carrying out 500 km on half a tank (cue applause), costing us 20 pounds. The car was to be named “The Don”, for a number of reasons. Not because it was so white and M...cLean? or that the radio didn’t work or the music.had.died? Or that the man who rented us "The Don" looked either like Marlon Brando in ‘The Godfather’ or suspiciously like a chipmunk in Autumn?...

With Don filled up, we set off into the wild for three days to the beat of our own drum...passing desert, mountains, vineyards, rivers and a lot of very small, squat looking Saltean moutain people. T’was as if god had taken a raisin or saltana, pinched it between his thumb and forefinger and created the Saltean mountain people in this very image. Combined with arrid desert, mountains and a range of flora and fauna, it was not unlike driving through a large box of muesli.

Amid all this healthy stereotyping, one thing struck us quite firmly: a generation of Saltanas was and I assume still are missing, generally those between the ages of 18 and 25.

I posed this observation to someone recently, to be told that a likely explanation was education. I full heartedly believe this to be a fabrication. Saltanas appear to have little need for education, everyone participates in team-building farm work or tourist exploitation. Yes, by all means browse over the “beginners guide to getting the most out of the white man” but honestly, I fail to see the need to dedicate seven years of one’s life to the carefull price manipulation of a scarf made from the wool of an anorexic mountain goat.*

Another mystery, also to be found in many parts of Asia, is the mystery of the “expanding 29 year old woman”:

On reaching 30 a saltana will duly grow laterally. Again, I was offered another mundane explanation for this. It too balanced on a foundation of lies. This was....”childbirth”. My parry to the ill-informed suggestion: “the majority tend to reproduce at around the age of 18 or 20 (please refer back to paragraph dedicated to religion). For this reason, any attractive Saltana is likely to be holding the hand of a small child. Why? Because it’s HERS. Thus the chances of finding an educated, attractive, child-free Saltana are fractional, the men just won’t allow it. Fact."

Expect proceding chapter to follow in the week to come, addressing why it is that holiday 4x4s are used soley to transport grandparents sandwiched between children (like church) and vinyards will be sure to expell you from their premises at half 6 in the evening.

* I have recently been alerted to an update on the missing generation story: Apparently they all tend to find girl/boyfriends and focus “all” their energies on the relationship. So, in short, I had “love” or “infactuation” to blame for nearly going to jail.... What?...I don’t check driving licences.

miércoles, 15 de septiembre de 2010

"Avoid God's door & you'll be met by a boy selling the only thing he has"

Having told the company’s head of finances that she, naturally, was, frankly, “fucking useless”, I calmly set off to join forces with my compatriot and brother on a Tuesday night (this position is by no means limited to Tuesdays).

The time had come to dabble in a bit of light exploration, far from the magnetic pull of Buenos Aires; Salta would be our destination.

Twenty hours we were to spend cooped up in a bus, like a Jamie Oliver advert, had we been poor and Pablobian but alas, we were rich, British and would be damned if we’d travel with or like the masses. Thus we purchased what was and is known as a “coche cama”, which translates loosely as “reclining bed on large slow-moving vehicle”. A number of films were played, one of which involved Robert Redford getting to know his daughter-in-law (Jennifer Lopez) whilst Morgan Freeman (who had been attacked by a bear) watched and made wise, rhetorical comments.

What’s more, a small cafeteria was present and so we took a lot of excitement from this addition. Our favourite game happened to be: “make yourself a cup of coffee and then precariously walk the stretch of the bus alleyway back to your throne of leather and belittle passing bus passengers lacking coffee, leather thrones and Morgan Freeman”. Another game one could participate in was known as “be stared at by Bolivian families because you are tall and white”.

The bus fuelled fun and games finished, we settled in the city of Salta, marched into the centre, bought a bag of nuts, some beer and boldly seated ourselves in the main plaza.

The plaza, beautiful as as it was, happened to be filled with people, and furthermore, they appeared to be in the process of praying. The vast majority of Pablobians were facing the cathedral, which obviously had been filled up...or people were denied access on account of not being a boy between the ages of 6 and 10 years old.

In my honesty, I won’t say we felt out of place, after all, we were in the process of making our own silent prayers (to the god of gloriously cheap alcohol...lads.on.tour), yet one had the constant feeling that we might burst into brilliant red flames. I reeked of sin. The city stank of dogmatism. We kept our distant from the entrance.

However, our actions would not put a stop to the swarm of religious paraphernalia little Pablo's would force on us...

“No, Pablo, I would not like to purchase a calendar with a picture of Jesus being crucified on run along.”

(Pablo in question then begins to stare at us, point at the picture of Jesus and then at the list of days of the was as if he was trying to inflict some sort of Christ fuelled guilt on in short, suggesting we become members of the Catholic church.)

“Thank you Pablo, we are both more than aware of who the malnutritioned figure you direct your finger at is...and, quelle surprise,what the calendar below is. Now, off you go and spread the word.” (Which he did, selling one immediately after our brief encounter. Well done, religion sells).

Part II from of the recordings of our noble crusade is to follow promptly.

viernes, 27 de agosto de 2010

"Send a letter and we'll be sure to get back to you"

I am certain I have shed light on the phenomenon that is free thought and how it has infested the analogical mind of the common man here, yet certain events today have spurred me to make further scribblings:

“I was diligently working in the confines of our office when low and behold, the sound of gunshots filled our mundane air. I flew to the window to gaze down upon the vanguard of a rally/demonstration. As I had constructed previous arrangements to meet a client for coffee, I had no choice but to follow my curiosity. I should add that many events not unlike these have marched into my scope before, yet somehow the number of police and the steady sound of explosives had suggested this might offer a spot more excitement. So off I trotted, downstairs, out the door, to be greeted by a thick wall of smoke and Pablobians scattered around the main road, placing fireworks and such like on the tarmac, lighting them and scurrying back amid excited yells and rhythmic chants. This was straight up anarchy. Hundreds of protesters filled my sight.

Naturally, I wasn’t the least bit concerned as to what the reason for all this fuss might be, no doubt one of the following: 'We’re bored self-righteous students applying book read philosophies to a world we know little about' or possibly: 'I got pregnant when I was 12 yrs old and drunk off potato vodka, please create some rights for me'...or my favorite: 'The British stole an unpopular holiday resort...and some oil, lets take a stroll through the streets to mark our discontent'.

Anyway, I thought it best that I maintain my distance but, nonetheless, continued my observations. As per usual, they had employed a spearhead of men with paisley patterned handkerchiefs around their faces and long sticks or metal poles in their hands. It was these chaps' job to clear the streets, which had obviously cleared its self quite effectively...paisley has that effect. Behind this unruly bunch, were the problem solvers and drum bangers. Trailing behind, far behind due to the extensive size of this fun train, were the families, general stringer-ons and exclusive fans of large groups of people and consistent noise.

I had had quite enough for the day, the kafuffle was beginning to irritate me and I had no intentions to follow their plight. The moment had passed, for me that is, and I strolled off to the capitalist comforts of my favorite cafe/spice haven."

Moral of the story: “long walks through cities good, paisley and fireworks... bad.”

miércoles, 25 de agosto de 2010

Scouts and skirts: Bayden-Powell would have approved

Despite being in denial for some time, today I am fully aware that I possess the navigational skills of a little girl and yet, I continue to put my GPS under unnecessary strain. I draw attention to this fact merely because I have realised that I promised, some time ago, that I ought to retell a few rather important adventures, intentionaly and non-intentionally that way, which called on me to lean on absent boy scout skills...

“...There lies in this city a ridiculous public transport system. I was aware that there would come a time when I would have to take its reins and march a little closer to ‘knowing’ the place and immersing myself in the waves of smugness that inevitably follow. That time had come, I was due to congregate with other persons and so I took it upon myself to plan my journey by the means the "colectivo". I had a brief glance at the ‘GUIA T’( guide book for bus routes...they are all public owned and therefore move independently and unfortunately, temperamentally) in the hope that I might have my next steps planned. Thus, fueled by enthusiasm, a touch of Hendrick’s gin, bus numbers, a few road names and the arrogance of youth, I saw it a royal time as any to set off, which I the wrong direction.

“Well Freddie, look at you, finally brushing off the considerable doubt of hypothetical scout leaders......”

I was so very pleased with myself that I continued to boldly plough on, certain that the road names I should have been reading were waiting for me patiently. They were indeed, just not where I was heading. I had wandered into the heart of Constitución (I live on the edge, everyday flirting with danger and my three Peruvian girls). I was in the heart of darkness: the heart of the city’s quite delightful crime epicentre and ‘transvestite prostitution market’. One cannot find a female prostitute in the heart of darkness, the market, it would seem, is a tad specific.

By the time my rational voice had crept up on me and quietly whispered:
“Umm Freddie”
“Yes,” I duly replied.
“It would appear that we’re trotting in the wrong direction old fellow. Oh, and one more thing....we’re surrounded by men in skirts; this is not Sparta.”
“Well that’s very observant of....”
“Well...does this strike you as a salmon pink trouser and cerulean blue top type of area?’re a lamb in lambs’ clothing Frederick, no good can come of this.”....

It was as if the fog of enthusiasm had cleared and there I stood, in all my Surrey-Kent border glory, standing erectly in a dark street whilst prostitutes accumulated around me. The whistling started, the taunts...the probing questions...:

“Hey, white boy, why you here!”
“What you looking for?”
“Where you going?” and large a fairly deep and meaningful set of questions. Does anyone ever know where they are going...

Soon pimps began to join our jolly, philosophical party. I began to quicken my pace, aware that my time was somewhat limited and soon, Freudian retorts would not satisfy the appetites of my new best friends.

I had to get in a taxi, a bus...I would ride a small marsupial should one pass. Alas, there were no taxis, neither marsupials. There was a bus with a number I knew not but a destination that had to be better than my current one. I jumped on and peered out the window at the wake of high heels and pressured equipment I had left behind.

Moral of the story: “just because you can’t see it, doesn’t mean it’s not there.” Interpret that how you will.

lunes, 23 de agosto de 2010

Being blue eyed and blonde was never this hard...

It seems I’m encircled by linguistical bars that keep me enclosed in an anglophonal zoo of sorts. Yet, as discussed previously, my chiseled, Imperial features are contributing significantly to the upkeep of these bars. My house of sculpture (gym), or the one I now limp into in order to do physio (exercising every muscle but the one’s you can actually see), is becoming a source of considerable amusement; everyone thinks I look like Arnold Schwarzenegger. This has been initialized by a personal trainer, Pablo:

So, there I was, chatting to him about personal perfection and what it was like to have reached it, when he suddenly goes…

“arrrrrrnol sneggar”

“What the bigglesworth Pablo…what are trying to say? Come on lassy…where is it girl..what? They’ve taken the 4 wheel drive, 3ltre, bmw and crashed it into a rare species of Canadian maple tree?” I replied.

“No, no u look like arrrrnol…u know (the ‘k’ was probably unnecessary there)..Arnol.” He then carries out a lacklustre performance of some gun fight, I can only assume it belonged to a 'Terminator' film.
“Ah, je comprends, I’m not sure I quite agree but yes, the basic structure is certainly there,” I shot back at him, accompanied with a slight flexing of my left pectoral muscle.
“No, it your face.” He half laughed back at me.
“What the fuck Pablo, thanks a lot, why is it that I look German to everyone?.... I’m hardly the senator of California or even one of the boys in a Hitler youth propaganda poster.”

Regardless, Pablo has since been dining off his supposed light bulb moment ever since and worse, like some dogmatic, South American disciple, he’s been spreading the word. Consequently, it is the common man who now tries to catch a look (at my face) and then go scuttling off to the Pablo dwelling rockery to cackle away in agreement. I’m taking it all in my measured stride and even embraced the joviality. Just the other day I was conversing with a couple of Pablobians, asked to be excused to use bathroom and, as I walked away I turned, narrowed my eyes and grumbled: “I’ll be back”. They absolutely bloody loved it, I bloody loved, we all bloody loved it. Good delivery, good timing, great material…no one stood a chance.

Moral of the story: “looking German doesn’t presuppose a lack of humour.”

lunes, 9 de agosto de 2010

The one with the pregnant woman, 3 Peruvians and a sprinkling of paco: this is not pornography

A healthy mixture of disgruntlement and fear is coursing through the office veins. In the last month, two pablobians have met the cruel hand of authority. One of which was pregnant, neither kept any dignity, both leaving a wake of tears behind them: glorious pablobian tears, justified by the public recognition of a fairly awful start to a mother-child relationship.

“What I do? I have job!” I heard her sob and thus, drawn by the sound of a woman's tears, the scent of vulnerability and a wonderfully low self-esteem, I trotted off to find the source.
“Oh, good afternoon Pablita ( subsequently they had made her work all day before telling her to piss off), you hardly seem in good spirits.” I chirped brightly.
“I lost baby,” she snuffled back at me whilst pointing at her stomach. I was well aware of where the baby might be, directions were not required.

I replied with condolences, inappropriately suggestive comfort hugs and internal laughter that warmed the area where my soul ought to be. She had lost her job and failed in the early stages of motherhood...was it too late for a good old fashioned donkey punch..or maybe Morrisons’ value coat hangers. A D.I.Y. job beckoned...besides, she hardly had the money. Had she but held on to her post for a following 4 months all would have been well and rosy, but alas, she did not. One would have thought I might have some compassion for such a dire situation, but alas, I do not.

What more...ah, yes, of course. The spoils of war are soon to be reaped: my current landlord, who also happens to be a lying, worthless piece of low life, obsessed by money and indescribably mentally fragile, is apparently to be moving out the house. It has eventually come to his attention that to live with those you viciously tax is not a wise life decision. Naturally, this did not sprout from unfertile soul. Along with an anonymous female north Londoner, I have been sowing the seeds of anarchy. Only the other day I got every single cat in the house neutered, along with the one he keeps elsewhere but, foolishly, brought back for a couple of days. Little does he know that these pathetic emotional users shall never breed. All thanks to the work of some plastic scissors. Added to this we continually alter the picture arrangement in the house. For a man with OCD, this hurts, although possibly not as much the aforementioned punishment administered.

I have been met with continuous resistance to my colonial aspirations, it seems many are unwilling to accept I am fundamentally better than they. For example, once again my chiseled features and soft, exfoliated complexion have place me in troubles’ embrace:

I was on my way back from work, a glorious image of superiority and colour coordination, riding along on a woman’s vintage racing bike. I believe I was sporting a saffron yellow jumper, pastel chinos, a French beret nesting carelessly on my head and a cashmere scarf drapping gloriously around my neck. Anyway, I stopped at my local veg shop to sort out food for the dinner I was to be cooking, a string of Moroccan dishes incidentally. After chatting away with my three Peruvian girls, whose shop it is, about what 3 spices they would take to a desert island, I payed and began to walk to where my bike was placed.

All of a sudden I’m confronted by this Pablo, around 25, drunk, high( off Paco I assumed) and without an item of cashmere in sight.

“money.” He said to me.
“donkey.” I replied, assuming we were playing the random word game.
“money.” He repeated.
“donkey.” I replied once more, knowing that this was unlikely to ever become a successful musical number...Simon and Garfunkel we were not.

The issue at this point was that I had some coins in my hand. Usually I don’t even think about it, I just shake my head and glide off into the distance. Today I did no such thing. The high spirits I was in meant that I handed him the coins and stood back. At this point, I must add that my danger raydar was beeping furiously.

“No. I see you pay for vegetable. More!” He requested of me rather rudely and began to get closer.

In a flash, however, one of the Peruvian girls comes out and tells me I had forgotten something. This was odd, as I was certain I had everything in my.... "oh...right, well yes. Thank you very much." I chirped back and allowed her to lead me back into the shop( which has an open front, only a wall of veg separated us from the outside world) and told me to stay where I was...I was unlikely to move. Instead I began to arm myself with sweet potatoes and a large aubergine.

Whilst I was preparing for a ratatouille based battle, my three girls led a verbal volley on my potential assaulter, all of them yelling at him in brilliant Peruvian unison. It must only have been a couple of minutes and yet it felt like hours as my life flashed before me and I winced at the image of my 12year old self in all its centre parting, quicksilver shame.

I had been saved by the collective height of around 4metres....Lord of the Rings in reverse. I thanked them and swore my eternal allegiance to their vegetable selling cause and gave them a number to call, should they ever be in need of help.....a number that obviously directed straight to the police station: I was thankful, not stupid.
So, the moral of the story is this: just because they’re short, doesn't mean you shouldn't talk to them.

jueves, 5 de agosto de 2010

Something I found in the closet...

Rummaged around my scribblings and found a piece from the start of the year.....

“Had the office end of year party the other day and I think that in the office party there is one person who ends up embarrassing himself, thus I decided, in advance, that it would be best if this person wasn’t me. However, there’s a difference between thoughts you’ve carefully constructed beforehand and those enlightened, cerveza infused ones you throw crudely around in the moment. I had found the light, and with that I took a nice big tequila sledgehammer and reduced my previous thoughts to rubble.

….. the party was at this Mexican restaurant, all nice and polished. We had a floor rented where everyone was to sit themselves for dinsies( there’s always that moment when you sit down at events like this and you say to yourself: “how much food can I possibly get away with eating before it seems rude…or someone realises?”). Anyway, there was champagne at the start( served in quarter sized, eunuch bottles), which, unsurprisingly, proceeded to die out swiftly, to be replaced by….soft drinks….what? “Pablo, where the hell are the beers you filthy man-kisser? I can’t possibly carry out the demolition of my sensible thoughts with Pepsi…I’d end up a shaky, hyperactive mess or like someone who accidentally got hold of a child's ADD medicine”. Luckily, I sought refuge in the naughty corner, where we proceeded to make our way gently through what we had available(i.e. they drank beer whilst I supped on some quite delightful rosé).

I think, all in all, I kept my composure, owing the majority of thanks to the fact that the winds of translation whisked away 75% of the unfiltered material that tripped out of my head."

jueves, 22 de julio de 2010

Bye bye baby...

With sandy blonde hair, soft white skin and sky blue eyes, I’m often accosted by interesting sorts and more often than not, land my self in environments in which a glancing flash of the purity of a crisp blue steel has very little place. An example:

I was making my normal gait towards the two women who sort out my fruit and veg(
lad) when I glided past a group of healthy corner dwellers. Sure enough, I was
invited to converse with their persons: one girl made what could only have been
kissing sounds, whilst the other inquired of me how I was( I was fine as it
happened…possibly a little hot)…but the last one thought it best she
whistle at me and ask if I was looking for anything( yes, fruit as it happened).

"Eeey, qué pasa...querés algo?" She grumbled.

I laughed, then stopped when I peered at this last woman and realized that she
must have been coming on to at least 5 months pregnant.

“mmm do you not think laying off the contractual sex for a little while might
be a good idea, or possibly until you give birth?” I pondered.

I think the women decided that she’d make the most of not being able to get
pregnant for 9 months, save some money on contraception, not that she had indeed
been splashing out on such luxuries previously. With hindsite I really should
not have been so taken-aback by this 2-4-1 deal; breaking news: “Ricky Martin: gay”, “Bishop linked with pedophilia”.......“South American
prostitute gets pregnant”.

Prozac nation

Emotional break downs are probably not such a rarity, yet I’m fairly certain I haven’t witnessed many….up until moving to the melodramatic capital of the world, where the water works run strong with estrogen, Prozac is considered candy and the streets are filled with the festering odour of emotional weakness. I have been forced to deal with the confused product of the casual mating of Spanish and Italian immigrants, combined with a Catholic reluctance to employ contraception.

A favorite arena for a decent melt down to be viewed is undoubtedly the workplace. A woman will often repeatedly smash her computer mouse on her desk without a moments thought for I.T resources, followed by a crescendo of female tears, which culminates in her being ushered out of the room to be fed “we’ve all been there” advice. The rest of us watch on with our halos of smugness, what a fool she is for displaying publically the contents of her pressured soul….she will regret it all, come tomorrow morning.

However, there is one experience that stands head and shoulders above the rest, the lantern that all future performances are advised to follow. It had uncontrollable shaking, the bottom jaw moving as if possessed. There was head banging and yet, for me, I shall frame forever the immortal words that came forth from her mouth as is if torn straight from the old testament or an American one man play:

“Oh God why??!! Why are you punishing me like this! I can’t carry on…I know I’ve broken hearts, it used to fun….yes, this is why you are punishing me…so DO IT! PUNISH ME GOD, PUNISH ME!”

Absolutely bloody brilliant, a quite fabulous demonstration of the histrionic gestures of the population and the innate fragility of a nation. My face offered the soft, understanding eyes of the shrink she so needed, yet my mind echoed rich, colonial laughter…
“God was not initially planning on punishing you, nor is he now, I expect he’s rolling around in the clouds crying with uncontrollable laughter, though with time I would expect this to be replaced by an overwhelming shame at the lackluster job he did when making you,” I mused.

Shattered dreams and lavatory etiquette

It is official, I’m a cripple, destined to pass my days on the touch line with my hands in a barbour jacket and my feet in a pair of Wellington boots, unable to run or participate in “impact sports” or those “putting an unnecessary amount of stress on your spinal column”. A metaphorical sledgehammer has been taken to my sporting career, which is now confined to cycling, light paddling and photography. Has anyone seen the upper-body on a cyclist? Bradley Wiggins has the physique of a sparrow with glandular fever. So, by and large, I have passed the recent weeks capturing the soon-to-be past glory of my crippled body....accumulating 56 pictures....with other mediums remaining untouched.

I also have a problem with going to the loo, at work. It's not a biological thing, more a question of the lesser intelligence of my fellow workers. They appear to possess an inability to recognise when a cubicle is engaged and therefore should wash and dry their hands, keeping them far away from the light switch that unsurprisingly covers the room in a sheet of darkness( there are no windows), meaning that those inside a cubicle are forced to remain regally seated for an indefinite period of time or one just might elect to carry out a daring dash for the lights. This was the dilemma I was faced with. I made the dash, breaking free from my cubicle of comfort and security. Trousers up, but not buttoned, belt askew, hand on switch( light), eyebrows up and mouth shaped in a perfect o....was the image that one of the Pablo’s was greeted with when he opened the door. I looked not unlike a small, night faring marsupial with a giant.... argentinian, all judging flash light glaring down on it.

“Hello Pablo...”
“Hey Freddie what you do like this? dark.”
“Congratulations Pablo, astute as always. Yes, it is indeed dark.”
“Why you no use light eh?” he squeaked back.
“Mainly it’s because I enjoy the constant threat of your kind disturbing my blissful defecation, the buzz of a night bombing session, driving without headlights or maybe it’s just because I enjoy these mid-wipe conversations. Christ Pablo, you are a pathetic human being.”

So, now I have yet another reason to suspect that the stickiness of free thought hangs in the a well beaten child, they can sense smell danger. The colonial landslide is brewing. Pablo, along with his little fleet of Pablobians, shall be the first to bear it’s full, Anglophonial weight.

Mmmm, what else. Ah, yes.....we nearly killed our cat. I don’t like cats but that feeling is yet to motivate me towards killing one. How did this happen? Someone, not myself, decided it be a mighty fine idea to adorn the cat’s neck with beautiful jewellery, more specifically: sparkly bracelets and what not. A glorious idea this may indeed sound, injecting beauty and, quite frankly,drawing the attention away from its ridiculous facial structure and pathetic whiskers,yet in practice one should probably make sure that the bracelets can be removed...with ease.In short, what followed next was a scene from Joseph Fritzl's cellar. Somehow the cat managed to get a bracelet stuck in its mouth, a bit like a horse’s bit, thus was forced into being pinned down whilst they were cut off.Operation Pussy Jewellery Removal lasted 20 minutes. The cat didn’t leave its box/bed for 24hours.....brilliant.

Inner-beauty does indeed count

Its obviously been some time since i sent some updates, i apologise.

Well, I got offered a new job about 2 months ago, i took it, now i’m working in ‘medical tourism’. I’ve shed this description out to a few of you, i like it, so i’ll use it once more….i organise/orchestrate/steer/engineer medical packages for people who are in need of an operation but are without insurance and can’t/would rather not pay the “truly formidable price tag of health care in the U.S”. So, i bring them out to here, Mexico, Thailand etc. and organise flights, hotel, operation and, should they choose, a short holiday to recover. Funnily enough, one of our countries happens to be Israel. I was pretty certain there was a war going on over there. Whatever.

Work is good, bit slow as the company has just started, a bit disturbing because one of the two people i share an office with continues to show me his personal porn collection. He’s 75 years old. That’s always how it is with that generation and computers, they start with WWII, “strategic battle games”…then they discover porn. Now, usually i wouldn’t have a huge (….medium sized-hopefull) problem with this, but he’s old, he does this every other day and he enjoys disguising it as other “documents”.
“Young boy(that’s what he calls me…pervert), you see new gym building down road? It’s using new technology…you should see, i have advert.”
“Oscar (his name…), I would love to, but i’m really quite busy at the moment. Furthermore, i’ve recently become aware that you just want to fill my pure mind with your collection of pornographic clips that should, and are in many areas, banned. So no, you horny antique, I’ll pass. Thank you.”
“Hey, seriously, you see this, it very important” (he says all this with a fairly pissed off look on his face…great, now I have an angry as well as horny old person to deal with, we all know what people do when those two moods are combined).
“Fine..”, i reply.
I’m then greeted by a clip of a gym, he wasn’t lying, but different types of machines though.
“Heeyyy, you like it eh. eh? It very nice gym, no? haha…verrrry nice gym. yeh?”
“Yes, well done Oscar, it’s porn, congratulations. Don’t you need to work, or die?”(having said that he’s had 2 strokes and a heart attack…shock horror. He says he can’t do exercise. I don’t think that’s the problem. His body bag will look like a tent.

My house is all well. My landlord is a greedy bastard…i told him this the other day, he nearly cried. He has mental problems, not like Down’s Syndrome, Tourrete’s or ‘Dyslexia’, but it’s more like a severe case of mental fragilty…his girlfriend had just left him as well. He’s bought a cat to compensate for her absence. Poor cat.

I joined a rugby club a couple of months ago. It’s nice, despite the monsters playing. One chap, who’s a farmer, weighs 140kg. Come shower time it’s demoralizing, although he needs to be careful really. He reminds me of Lennie from ‘Of Mice of Men’.Added to this, i’m trying my hand at coaching under 15s (boys rugby)…one of their girlfriends started hitting on me, said i had beautiful eyes (i do, she’s right) and a nice voice, then asked what i was up to that night….crazy eh…….good shag though. Only joking….she was shit.

What else, i’ve bought an old racing bike, which is without doubt the best thing i’ve bought, besides the Peruvian family that clean my flat. It’s very old, white and possibly meant for a woman (probably why it easy to ride..weyyy fookin lad!)…either way, it’s fairly fast. It also allows me to get away with many more things than i could previously: I can wear a head band, hang a chain across my back..basically adopt the London courier look. It’s a little bit dangerous though, turns out people don’t like cyclists, come to think of it, i don’t like cyclists….this is the reason i bought my chain, asides to stop it being stolen, it comes ( will come) in handy if i get in a situation requiring something more than a verbal exchange…having said that, when push comes to shove i know, you know, they know, that i won’t employ my chain…it’s there for aesthetic reasons. It really does look good though, all rustic, shiny and adorned across my well moisturised shoulders; moisturiser does that i guess.

I’ve stopped Tango, put it on hold. It’s far to slow, technical and takes a good couple of months of intensive practice before you can dance..’one’ can’t merely dance after a month, not like salsa, the sprinkler or big fish small fish cardboard box.

Weather is lovely and fresh, things are cooling down and i don’t sweat so much at night.
Spanish is better, but not progressing rapidly due to continually working in English and being injured from Rugby due to shower “chat”…..I’ll be bringing my own soap from now on.
There are more things to re-tale but they’ve slipped my mind for the time being.

I hope everyone is well, enjoying your final year, passed predominantly in the library. Tip: use the disabled loos, they’ve got loads of space, if you do get caught it’s no problem…they can wait…not as if they need to stand. Ooooo, only chin wagging…not all the disabled are unable to stand… .

Right, enough of that lark, I’m going to try and persuade someone with prostrate cancer that having his operation performed in Mexico, my some Tequila infused doctor with an equivalent of a GCSE in Biology and an addiction to life, is by far the best decision. It costs 1/4 of the price in the U.S….not including the tips.If needs be, your needs be, i am able to sort out some plastic surgery as well…our motto is: “Its not about what your mother thinks is beautiful that counts”.

Child’s play…

Much has happened in the last couple of weeks, I’ve had man flu, spent a weekend at an Argentinean family’s country house, moved house, had an Español class….
My weekend of country fun with horses and other animals went a bit like this:
It was all very jolly, I’d made friends with this Porteños family over the last few weeks and was having a drink with them (in this pub…pubs are slightly different here, chaotic, random, and girls can generally drink for free…which means yes, you have two choices: 1. Find a girl 2. Dress as one)..anyway, dressed as a girl I was busy squawking away with my new best friends.
“oh you must come out to our house in the country. We’re going this come, yes?” They asked me.
In England this is a happy, vague invite…”oh sure you can come, probably not this weekend, but maybe when I know you better…still, I feel good about offering you, and you feel good about being offered”. In Argentina it’s probably the same…so I promptly said, “oohhh god yes…id love to, me and you guys out in the countryside being all rugged and rural like..i’ll pencil it into my diary….brilliant.”

Well, it was all very smart their little house, in a special sort of country-club that has security all around…to keep the riff-raff out, there nothing like a healthy bit of wealth segregation. The house was cozy, and I learnt how to properly prepare maté (a kind of tea that is drunk religiously out here), had my first asado (bbq where meat is cooked slowly for about 2hours), gave a carrot to a horse and went paintballing as it happened to be a 15yr old girls’ bday party that Saturday and, yet again, I was invited. It is this final chapter that stands out above the rest….

Paintballing: arrived at the other family’s house, which was a kind of sanctuary for animals. I was told they had, at times, up to 150 rescue dogs..when I was there they only seemed to have about 50…a lot had died. I strolled through the doors to be greeted by thirty 15yr olds…all girls. Whilst in that room there maintained a consistent 120 decibels…I contributed greatly to this; “ahhhhhh
ohhhhhh im so god damn excited!!!! Hehheeeeheheheheeee…pink….flowers…butterflies..rainbows!!” I screamed.
In my excitement I bounded round the room skipping and throwing my hands around freely, knocking over the odd child.
Play time was over however. Lunch finished. My skipping came to an end and we began to be briefed on using the guns (the family had a friend who owned a
paintball company and had kindly lent them 30 guns for the day…which no doubt was an interesting conversation: “oh im really stuck for ideas for little buttercupflowerpetals’ party”
“well im just putting this out there… but what about entrusting them with a
paintball gun capable of blinding, bruising heavily and probably making someone infertile if directed appropriately? Its just an idea. I only brought it up cos I own a company that usually gives these sorts of weapons to 30yr old men on stag weekends…but this seems like the right thing to do.”

Either way, we were being briefed…I didn’t need briefing, I was British…the brief was simple: your were up against the Argentinian resistance looking to over-throw your Empire and attempt self-government…the fact that this resistance took the form of lots of small girls with dark hair and pig-tails didn’t change a thing. The objective: secure territory until things have settled and everyone realizes what a jolly bunch of fools they’ve been, and we can have nice cup of tea (which they’ll make), eat some cake (that they’ll bake...), and then have little Pablo run around our freshly cut lawns (cut by a string of children aged between 4-6 with hand scissors..the age is important as it generally corresponds with the weight…you hardly want a 20stone Peruvian housekeeper charging around your front garden) whilst I take shots at him with an air rifle ...ah, whatever happened to Colonialism.

After the man had finished his little pep talk I casually walked off to the woods where this blood-bath would take place. No sooner had I started my stroll when I heard this chanting, I wheeled around and was splashed with the image of lots of small Argentineans raising their guns in the air and, in Spartan esq. unison, chanting away. It was on. They had grown complacent and discipline would have to be injected into their primitive fibers; a lesson must be taught…it may have been her party, but I was going to be the one to make her cry if I wanted to…cry if I want to…you would do to if it hap…concentrate.

There is no winner in war, just a field of broken pieces that cut crude holes in mens’ hearts…that was bollocks. The wiser of the party came over to my side, the rest…they would stand against me, and in doings so would be crushed/heavily bruised.

Despite my ruthlessness, at first, I was all like “ooo can I really shoot a 15yr old girl, it’s a know..she’s only seems a bit ... .” Never has a thought evaporated as quickly as it did that afternoon. From the moment I locked on to a member of the resistance and sent two shots hurtling at her legs, knocking her to her knees and into a puddle of her own child tears, I knew I had found my calling. If you haven’t already purposely set out to make a child cry, give it a shot, it feels great…no wander it’s so popular…not sure if there’s any need to waste money on adverts. It was child’s-play (really?), and by the end of the day I had effectively reestablished control. There stood before me a wood, filled with paint, but more importantly, crying children. I didn’t need to understand Spanish to know what they were saying; “we’ve been reduced to a bloody, colourful mess of shattered dreams. Yet, we now know that we are not capable of ruling ourselves. Therefore, it’s in all our best interests to serve this beacon of imperial power as best we can…”, or something like that.

My new apartment is significantly nicer, the building seems quite old and Paris-like(Parisian), my house mates are French, Columbian and Uruguayan. Conversation is going to be interesting…but I figure that I can spark up a pretty healthy trade: bread and wine from France, co….ffee from Columbia, and something from Uruguay…I’ve just looked it up and I’m told they’re big on their swordfish, so..swordfish from Uruguay.

I have more news that involve me getting lost in Buenos Aires’ equivalent of Brixton wearing nothing but salmon pink trousers, a sky blue t-shirt and a ‘take advantage of me I’m British and fresh out of public school smile’….. but I’m too tired to write…

Moisturiser: preserving or exposing pillowy skin?

Dear all,
I feel I’ve broken through some of the initial difficulties of living in a new country where a.) You know no one b.)You cant communicate..this leads to difficulties in point ‘a’ c.)You are continually kissed by men..damn that filthy Carlos. How have I done this? Imperialism. ‘But you cant possi…’ Wrong. The ball is rolling, only a fool would stand in the way.
Point ‘a’ has been solved through my expansionist regime orchestrated in the office, combined with gentle paddling in the expat pool.

Point ‘b’ posed bigger problems…and so I start my espanol lessons next week, in the mean-time I’ve developed a phenomenal pointing finger, sharpened up my acting skills and raised my voice a little. However, the biggest break-through came when I was deep in chat and chit with a fellow worker…“well Pablo, that’s an interesting point you propose there; on first glance J.K. Rowling may well be writing for a younger audience, yet a deeper analysis would suggest that this is far from the case, and no Pablo, pointing that ruler at me and shouting ‘rred rred’, does not make you Ron.”
Suddenly I hear this voice from behind me squeak : “haha señor…you look like Bill…pince o bales!”
I reeled around to face this little, squat, chocolate coloured South American.
“What? Who the hell are you? Bill, Bales…what in gods name are you trying to say man?”
The squeaking started again…
“haha haha…bill….you know señor…pince..dar dar da da, dar dar da daaaa.” This was followed by a mock self crowning.
“Ahh I see. Firstly that’s a wedding song, secondly its W…Wales and William, and he’s not Prince of Wales…doesn’t matter.”
Then it clicked… ‘hang on a second, Green & Black’s over here thinks I look like a member of the Royal family…the limits to which this accidentally leaked piece of knowledge could extend are boundless…as far as they should be concerned, I would be known as ‘that Englishman…the one with royal blood coarsing through his veins’, although it’s unlikely they’d elect the word ‘coarsing’ or ‘veins’.
Thus I swivelled back towards this little coffee bean and, with as low a voice as I could produce, I answered:
“Yes, I do indeed look like William….now take your suspiciously child-sized legs and spread the word throughout…this building.”
At last I will be able to shake off the shackles of charades, and instrument my policies through mere face movement. I was a royal and that was that.

In terms of accommodation, I have only a week or so until I will be moving from my studio flat in Viamonte, a street that should have no name, to San Telmo or Monserrat(I’m unsure at the moment); replacing living above two strip clubs, and next to a 6ft 5” transvestite, for an area renown for it’s antiques and tango….sad times lie ahead.

Point ‘c’ has been eradicated in part. Yes, I am still subjected to coarse man-stubble on coarse man-stubble, except I possess little stubble, and it is neither manly or coarse, but I’ve worked out that the prime man-kissing hours are between 9am and 10am (as well as random meetings throughout the day that I have little to no control over)..thus it is during these hours that i´m already deep into my work… “ohhh bonjour Carlos, cómo estás?”… “whats that you say?…yes, you are unable to ‘properly’ greet me….. and no, I will not move out of my work cubicle/impenetrable social fortress so that you can man-handle me…oh naive Carlos, you knew this day would come…did you really think you could get away with your face rape for ever..haha…now scarper or I shall launch an offensive of rubber-bands, slow moving staples and post-it notes with carefully sketched penises on them.”

I´m drinking lots of espresso, which is nice (they serve it with a small glass of fizzy water and a small biscuity, dulche de leche thing on the side. The fizzy water is stroke of genius). I’m eating red meat pretty much everyday, which is great. I´m drinking good red wine everyday, which brilliant. Beef is practically cheaper than chicken, depending on the cut, maybe this is down to some underground battery cow trade…I’m not too bothered, my ethics took flight long ago.

One last thing…I’ve worked out, cos o me intuition, that Portenos enjoy a good protest. I’ve frequently found myself confronted with a few hundred protesters. I may or may not have told you about ‘picketeers’…they’re unemployed chaps who professionally protest, well they don’t really do the protesting, they hold the front (vangard), the sides and the rear (the sides and the rear) and hold metal or wooden poles, kitted out in less than formal attire with a paisley (although check is often sought after) patterned handkerchief around their faces (leaving room for eyes obviously..otherwise chaos really would rein)..anyway this lot clear the roads and, if it comes to it, engage in physical contact with the police…who have plenty of tear gas(or large speakers playing ‘nothing compares to u’ by Sinead O’Connor). Fireworks/cheap bangers (…if they had the money for a good fireworks display they´d hardly need to be protesting) are let off and drums and other make-shift musical instruments are “played”. I had quite an interesting first-encounter with these protesters that involved what I thought was initial common ground for discontent towards the government, but later found out was not so common, and rather dangerous: they wanted food, shelter and to be rid of the shackles of political prejudice…I wanted an electric cooking hob and a new light bulb….

This extra bit goes out to less sensitive ears:
About to get success last night and so my mind was filled with the sound of fireworks and orchestral music.
“I’m just gonna get my jacket (jumper thing.. I don’t know the word for jumper..)”. I tell her.
She doesn’t unwrap herself from me..lad.
“Yes, you will have to let go if I’m to fulfill this task…what?…you cant stand up straight…this poses problems…but I guess I can work around this minor setback.” I inform her.
I try to prop her up but it was like making a pencil stand vertically…maybe you could do it for a few seconds but its never going to last.
“Well, this is an interesting situation…how about I drag you along and put you in a taxi home instead. Taxi drivers are nice people, they’ll know what to do in this situation… .”

Also on this subject..heard about the girl from school who cried wolf..or rape. Enjoyed andy’s reaction to this news: “you hear bout girl who got raped at welly?” I asked.
“No. House or woods?”…brilliant.
It was only a matter of time until something like this happened… “oh look at me mum, im all naive and innocent, just doing my homework and playing netball…BAM…raped”. What an idiot.