Janey's Blogs - November 2006
2nd of November 2006
Aspergers Man is making me mental
For those who dont
know, my husband has mild Aspergers Syndrome. Since travelling with
me the last few days, he is so mental he makes Rain Man look like Al
.he is driving me to madness. Since we have been in this flat
in London he has moved around the furniture, colour co-ordinated my
clothes and re arranged my toiletries, I have Tampons all in a small
box, lined up pointy ends facing out.
I was sitting writing
this blog and he managed to move sofas about and slide tables around
as I sat still. It was like that scene from Amityville Horror, I looked
round and there were chairs stacked on top of each other on a small
I was just about
to go into the Groucho Club for a quick pre gig drink when he called
me Janey, when will you be home?
Me - I dont know, I may stay out late
Husband - Do you have an estimated time of arrival?
Me No. Why?
Husband - Its just I want have supper all ready for you
Me - Its a fucking salad, there is no cooking, you can have it ready when I get there
Husband - Do you want a bacon roll for breakfast?
Me (exasperated) - I dont know yet as its just 8pm, I have no idea what I want at 8am
Husband - Well if you want bacon I can put it at the front of the fridge and when I open the door it will be nearest to hand in the morning
Me (now convinced he needs to die) - Are you that bloke from Sleeping with the Enemy? Am I going to have to dye my hair and fake my own death?
Husband (completely unperturbed) - So thats a yes to the bacon?
Its been like this for days now. He constantly needs to know everything I may want in the next fourteen hours so he can get it prepared in advance. I am so used to travelling on my own I am not used to someone asking me what I want to eat next Tuesday.
To top it all, I woke up this morning with a big knotted elastic band in my bushy hair, I could not work out why my hair looked like a special needs person, husband saw me trying to unravel it, he smiled smugly and said Last night your hair touched my face so I got up and tied it into a pony tail as you slept, that why you have a strange side bunch
That man is re arranging my hair in my sleep - that is grounds for divorce.
Today I also have a nasty head cold, it makes me feel ill. I have snotty stuff coming out of my beak and I want to remove the bowling ball from my brain!
Saturday the 4th
of November 2006
Meeting the Worlds most amazing director
My London trip is
going amazingly well. Other than walking miles with husband who just
I do enjoy the strolls through Hyde
Park but we almost got into a fist fight with a cyclist. Husband knows
how scared I get on busy roads and held my hand walking across High
Street Kensington pedestrian crossing. The green man flashed for us
to cross and the red light kept the traffic at bay, yet a cyclist ignored
the light and peddled straight through and almost knocked me on my ass.
He then slowed down and mounted the pavement and got off his bike, and
started to walk off.
What are you
doing? shouted husband.
The man in tight bright Lycra cycling outfit turned round and shouted to my husband Do you have something you want to say?
Husband rushed towards him, me in tow.
I spoke first Look mate the red light was on and you . I started to say
The guy looked at me with disdain and butted in I was dismounting
Husband let go of my hand and threw himself at the man shouting You fucking lying arse, the lights were red, you went through them, you almost hit my wife and now you fucking stand there trying to justify it by saying you were getting off your bike, I will fucking wrap your shite bike right around your skinny bright green legs
The man jumped back on his bike quicker than you could say angry Scottish person and sped off almost knocking people like skittles on the pavement and shot off into the distance.
So that drama over I had a great sleep last night and arrived at BBC Radio studios this morning to take part in Loose Ends on BBC Radio 4. The amazing actress Rachel Stirling was a guest and also the most wonderful director Sir Alan Parker, he of Evita and Midnight Express fame, oh and Fame the movie! He was so nice to meet and chat to, I was overwhelmed but he put me at ease! How good is my job getting to meet such interesting people?
The other astounding guest was Derren Brown; he is UKs foremost mind bending, stunt magician.
During the radio
show I shoved a note over to him that read give me the lottery
numbers now and there was a wee drawing that I had done of me
sticking an axe into his head in a mock threat
.and HE sent back
the note with six numbers on them! So we will see!
We went to the pub afterwards and Sir Alan Parker sat there for a while having a good old chinwag, I adore his work and feel privileged to get to know him a wee bit more.
He told me that
my comedy stint was wonderful and remarked that comedy in such a small
room to such a small amount of people must be the hardest job in the
world and I made it look easy! How nice!
I was out last night at Groucho with best mate Monica. We sat and ate chips and talked shit for ages (thats what we do) and finally caught up with each others gossip. She is so busy nowadays and it was really great to just sit down and be together without phones or work or staff or managers or comedy people getting in the way!
I did bring along Easy Living Magazine as this months issue (December) has a great article inside about me! (Its always about me me me) the photo shoot was lovely and I do look nice in it, except I seem to have loads of make up on! I will upload the pic as soon as I can.
Must go - Aspergers
man is asking me what kind of Apple pie do I want? Apple Sponge-Apple
Crumble-Apple Puff? Cold Custard or Cream?
Its making me crazy .I just want pudding!
Monday the 6th of
My Topless gig on radio Kerrang!
Yesterday was just
as mental as possible. I left my Chelsea apartment at 3pm and headed
up to Borehamwood to meet with John my manager who would be driving
me to Birmingham for my gig there at 9pm.
As soon as I got
off the train at Kings Cross I saw the message posted on the wall explaining
that the train I wanted had been cancelled and I had to go through Kentish
Town instead. So I dragged my tired arse up to Kentish Town, came out
of the station and was crushed by around 8 million drunk pissed antipodeans
who were mostly all wearing a sweater that said Church.
That confused as
me as what Sunday Church serves that amount of alcohol? A turn out Church
was a club! Silly old me.
I managed to get
to the right platform to get the train up to Borehamwood and came upon
a very young boy, spectacles hanging off his face, wearing a Railway
uniform, cheap tie askew shouting through a megaphone some mumbled words
as hundreds of people jostled and shoved him around trying to find out
where the replacement train was.
A big baldy headed man dragging a giant awkward Alsatian on a thick chain ran towards the young befuddled train boy. The dogs nails were skidding and its legs scattering all over the concrete walkway, its tongue hanging out and breathing madly it managed to mount the young mans leg as he tried to cope with multitude of frustrated commuters. The place was chaos.
I gave up and called John to come collect me from Kentish town and drive straight to Birmingham from there. We hit the road at 5pm and even before we got to Milton Keynes the traffic had slowed to a complete standstill. The dark skies were full of magnificent fireworks bursting over the beautiful red slashed sunset that fell over London. Still the cars never moved.
I started to panic,
time was ticking, and we were doing 3 miles an hour for over two hours.
I was due on stage at 9pm and it was now 8.50pm. We could not work out
why the traffic was so slow then we came upon four huge lorries lying
on their side, windows smashed, glass everywhere mixed with blood on
the dented windscreen and suddenly my anxiousness to get to the gig
was replaced with utter horror at the gnarled machines that had crashed
on that road ahead of us. It really did put my petty stress at being
late into perspective!
The gig was really cool, a lovely gay gig at the Nightingale bar. The audience were such good people and had waited patiently for me to arrive. I appreciate that.
After the gig I
was off to be a guest at Kerrang! Radio, live in the studio, Tim Shaw
is an amazing shock jock, yet he handled the interview about my past
life and my comedy with amazing sensitivity and asked me outright questions
no other live radio presenter had dared
..and whilst we were discussing
child abuse, my mothers murder..Etc
.the two glamour girls in the
studio stripped naked! It was so very funny.
I was sitting with
naked girls and having the best laugh ever.
Then Tim and I decided
to tell the audience that I was going to go topless
I called husband
live and asked him what he thought of my tit shot on radio and he just
hung up laughing (he was annoyed that I even needed his opinion on this!
If I wanna strip for another man then thats my prerogative!)
Anyway Tim set it
up for the listeners and I pretended to get my baps out
I didnt it was a joke
.but my brother was listening in back
in Scotland and called me this morning horrified that I had got my boobs
out on radio!
My daughter Ashley is mortified yet again, she loves Kerrang! And cant believe I spoke about my breasts and even suggested getting them out with her fav DJ.
I am never going to grow old gracefully am I?
Sunday the 12th
of November 2006
Missing in Action as usual
Am so sorry my blog
has suffered by being so bloody fucked up busy. I lie in bed and imagine
I am writing my blog, I have all these great things to tell you, then
wake up, ignore my laptop and jump on the tube to the next gig.
In my defence, I have written two articles for newspapers back in Scotland and have been gigging like a nutter, no excuses for ignoring my blog I KNOW!
So here is a rundown. I had a wonderful time performing my play in Oxford on Tuesday last week. John Fleming (my Manager) and I caught the bus up to Oxford early and we wandered the beautiful tree lined buildings and streets.
I cannot begin to
tell you how amazing that city looks in the weak winter sun. We went
to Christchurch University and strolled around the grounds. The place
is so startlingly awesome. Imagine being a student there? It made me
wish I had was 18 again and instead of getting married in Glasgows
East End I was studying in that ancient and gorgeous city. It wasnt
something that was considered when I was a teenager, going to Oxford?
. going to prison
a flat in Oxford to study law
I stood on those
cobbled streets and watched all these wonderful young people, ride bikes,
chat in groups and lunch beneath 14th Century Monuments and secretly
wished I had had those opportunities
.but then again maybe I would
not be me now if I had been them then
.does that make sense?
I suppose knowing that those educated and privileged people had taken time out of their night and paid to see ME perform a play that I had wrote did give me a sense of wonderment that I secretly enjoyed! I am not an uneducated failure after all!
The wonderful and talented actor Beth brought her boyfriend to come along and watch and that made it lovely for me, you have no idea how it feels to have a professional actor watch your stuff .so nice, I love her for supporting me like that.
I took some nice pics of Oxford and will post them soon.
John and I caught
the late night bus back to London and husband was awake and had tea
on the table for us arriving at 1am. What a guy!
Oxford has become my regular haunt, as on Friday I was back there to compere the Jongleurs club in the city. I caught the 5pm train from Paddington on my own, IPod at the ready; coffee in hand and instead of having a leisurely journey to my fav town .I was beaten near to death by the scrambling rampage of fat suited businessmen trying to get home for the weekend to their stone cottages and country piles in Oxford.
I have never seen so many badly behaved professional men in my life ..politicians and bankers by day, fucking fat rugby tackling passenger kickers at the weekend I shoved my way onto the train but lo and behold it looked like a scene from those awful trains of death that shunted prisoners from camp to camp in the Second World War! I was imagining me sitting there listening to music and leisurely sipping tea reading a newspaper .OH NO! I was crushed with my face into the back of a fat man wearing a damp duffel coat outside a toilet in the corridor of the train .if they transported lambs like this, the public would have an outcry and vegetarian militant lesbians wearing oatmeal cardigans reciting placenta poetry would throw themselves on the track in protest. Why do we suffer this horror?
So I got myself
into the first class carriage.
It was like a Gordon Brown convention, loads of smart dressed overly coifed men in cashmere coats and bright pink ties .the kind of men you suspect are living with their boyfriends in Dolphin Square and work in Westminster and go home to their bored wives in Oxford at the weekend. Ok I know thats a generalisation but when they saw this scuzzy frazzled Glaswegian sit near them, they visibly grimaced. How dare scum enter their streamline clean first class carriage?
I ignored them; they peeked over pink Financial Times broadsheets at my damp face and frizzy hair. The ticket man came waddling down (do they ever do anything other than waddle?)
is not first class miss, you are not allowed in here without a first
class ticket he shouted as he looked at my crumpled rail ticket.
The men in pink ties smirked as a group, grey haired with shiny faces, all enjoying the one moment in their week ..the poor person had been caught, oh how they knew I never held a first class ticket .they sat in combined silence and nodded the nod to each other that rich people do when a common person has stepped into their oak smoked- cashmere-leather briefcase world without permission!
I looked at the ticket man and said Look mate, there are NO seats on this train and I am not paying £18 to stand in a fat mans armpit outside a toilet in a corridor for an hour, so I am taking this seat, I refuse to be dangerously rattled about on this shaky shit train, so deal with it
I can call the police and have you charged he snapped with bristling authority.
The newspapers moved, eyes peeked out, Blackberrys were ignored, laptops were clicked shut for better viewing purposes, creaseless shirts on well fed bodies leaned nearer, no one spoke .silence in the First Class carriage.
Look, I really dont give a flying fuck if you call the Queen, call the FBI, call your mother, I am not moving, I refuse to be treated like a refugee begging for air on your shit train, so jail me I am stand up comic and its all material as far as I am concerned, I cant imagine all these nice politicians and bankers are going to appreciate you stopping the train and getting the police on for a woman who wanted a seat, do you?
The ticket man smiled and moved on. I won.
Just as I settled into my warm comfortable seat, the crispy white shirted man leaned across and spoke loudly You know madam; you have to pay the correct fare
I looked him straight
in the eye, I was aware his compatriots were staring and I said No
mate YOU have to pay the full fare, I dont, I argue with people
and stand my ground and you have probably paid enough for both of us,
so thank you, now please dont interrupt me anymore, I want to
listen to some hard core rap on my IPod
I dont know what the collective noun is for a bunch of fat rich business men but I think its wankers.
London is great, the gigs have been awesome -husband has been good, annoying but good we go home tomorrow and I am looking forward to seeing Ashley. Talk soon.
Monday the 13th
of November 2006
Londons Kings Road is the Golden Strip its where the beautiful people hang out. Young, tall, lean-limbed rich kids, products of gorgeous moneyed parents, friends of Wills and Kate (the prince and the principal girl) promenade daily.
teeth with too much calcium, toned legs that have been skiing since
tumble tots and handbags slung over shoulders that could pay the health
care costs of a Malawian family for life. Strutting their stuff past
the designer shops, a fashion show for free, they smell of Chelsea,
they reek of Oxford and they will live in luxury, and I was jealous.
This was until I sat beside a group of three girls and two boys. A clutch of Cosmoes, Claras and Montys, all terribly stressed and bemoaning mummys latest demand to go work for a few months and get experience.
Good old mummy
I thought to myself.
I can always
offer to take our housekeepers dog out three times a week, or do a Diana
and work part time in a kindergarten the gangly blonde girl swept
her sheer curtain of shiny hair out of her face and nibbled on a pastry.
I have a tall, beautiful daughter, who I encouraged to work during University studies. She has been working since she was 9 years old, either in comedy performance or her own PR Company she set up at 15 years old to promote theatre and comedy at the Edinburgh Fringe. Between writing comedy sketches she is a DJ at weekends and loves her independence. Working is important to younger people, it really does give them sense of self worth and earning your own buck does wonders to their self esteem.
One girl sat there emptying her expensive handbag, Gucci purse, flashy mobile phone, Crème de la Mer face cream came spilling all over the glass table, searching for the keys of her car I have mummys Jaguar today, lets all go to the Met bar for drinks, I have an account there she bleated.
I watched them all
troop out and wondered what it must feel like to be that rich, that
beautiful and that young.
I was meeting a friend of mine who works in television, she is 45 years old (same as me) but she REALLY looks after herself She looks after her skin and is constantly transfixed about her appearance.
She has already
had a face lift (fuck knows how I must look; I only started wearing
moisturiser five years ago). She has had botox in her forehead and recently
got a new innovative laser treatment on her décolletage, she
..amazing and scary at the same time.
She has starved
herself to make sure she is the same weight she was when she was eighteen
years old and NEVER eats anything over 150 calories in one sitting,
(she told me this as I stuffed a chocolate croissant into my face, 500
calories a pop).
Janey, this is London, men dont like fat old women, so dont tell me I am paranoid she muttered as I told her to eat more. She then sipped on Mint tea and ate a plain salad with no dressing.
The older we get the harder we need to try to keep looking well, if we lose our looks the husbands look elsewhere she added.
I looked at her emaciated frame, her thin brown skin, and her sallow eyes and shoved yet another cake into my face. I could feel my knickers nip into my waistline, my boobs were heaving beneath my black top and I wondered if I could have another cake without making her frightened.
Listen Marla, I have been married 26 years, I have a man who knows I like to eat trifle at midnight, he wakes me up for sex at 6am and has at least twice this week had his fingers trapped in my mental hair, he clips my horned toe nails, he knows what soap powder will get menstrual blood out of my favourite knickers and once put a pony tail in my hair as I slept, if he fucks another woman its got nothing to do with how I look and everything to do with how he feels about himself or David Beckham would never have fucked that fat bird, because no one looks more perfect than Victoria Beckham
Marla looked horrified. She sat quietly and stared at her perfectly manicured nails, then looked up at me with watery blue eyes and said That is not helping Janey; I havent had a chocolate croissant since 1983
I am sorry Marla that was stupid of me to say that and I know I should lose weight and maybe use more conditioner and get my split ends cut, but I dont think they are guarantees to keep a man faithful? I added.
She smiled, leaned over and with one slim brown hand and swiped my chocolate croissant then took a huge bite.
spurted and smeared over her red lips, she licked it and smiled at me
This is better than sex she laughed throatily.
Marla, if thats the kind of sex you are starving to save, then
fuck that girl- go shag the camera man
We stayed a while longer and I know that I need to look better in myself.
Helena Rubenstein the famous cosmetic doyenne once said There is no such thing as an ugly woman, just a lazy one
The times in my life when I starved myself, ran four miles a day and spent hours in high heels were the saddest times in my existence, because none of it was really for me.
I eat cake and am loved; I will change when that changes.
Thursday the 16th
of November 2006
Getting ready for my big BBC singing appearance
Singing is something
I am not very good at it, I cant really sing very well but am giving
it my best shot for BBC Children in Need slot. I bought a lovely wee
kilt and smart jumper to wear. Craig Hill is my beautiful singing partner
and BOY can he sing he is just bloody amazing!
So Craig and I rehearsed
and it seems to be good, we are singing the Proclaimers song Sunshine
on Leith and if we get through to the second round we are singing
Letter from America.
So after the singing session I popped over to see baby Abi, her new baby sister Julia and their mother (my niece Ann Margaret). Abi is now aged three and the funniest wee creature in the world. I was amazed how big wee baby Julia had grown; she is no longer a wee prawn newborn she is so cute and her eyes are huge!
Ann Margaret went
off to the shops and left me in charge.
I was cradling the baby and Abi said Aunty Janey, can I face-paint myself?
I agreed and carried
on snuggling the wee new baby, then minutes later Abi came running into
the room completely blacked up! Her entire face, ears, neck and hair
were a deep shiny black!
All you could see
were the whites of her dark eyes!
It was scary and funny to see a toddler do an Al Jolson (Old US singer who blacked up and sang very politically incorrect nowadays). I pissed myself laughing and decided to teach her the old Al Jolson song Mammeee complete with blackened jazz hands.
When Ann Margaret
came back from the shops Abi came running into the hall singing Mammeee
waving her wee fat black chubby hands, Ann Margaret screamed and dropped
the shopping and shouted Aunty Janey, what the hell have you done,
she is doing a Black and White Minstrel show!
I did explain that
Abi did the make up, I only did the choreography!
So today I got Ashley up at 4pm, she had been DJ-ing last night and was out very late and went off to do my workshops. I am looking after a bunch of 12-16 year olds teaching them comedy as a form of reinforcing self confidence. Yesterday they were treated to an exclusive Q&A with an amazing BAFTA award winning Scottish Comedy Actor who will remain un-named, he is an old mate of mine and came along at my request the kids were hysterical with excitement that he came to chat to them. I will forever be in his debt for coming along at such short notice and being very humble. I have good friends!
I am off to sing my songs .talk soon.
Sunday the 19th
of November 2006
Children in Need singing
Craig Hill and I
were part of the SPEX Factor charity singing competition live
on BBC Scotland on Friday night. It was all for Children in Need! We
were up against TV presenters Julian Sinclair and his brother Cameron
Stout, and the BAFTA award winning actors Kate Dickie and Ian Robertson.
We were all doing The Proclaimers songs and GOD they are hard to sing
I have never been that excited in my life! There I was all dressed up in a wee kilt, a new bra and top (The bra did make my boobies really high and scary but too late to go back now) and I stepped onto the huge stage set with my lovely singing comedy pal Craig Hill. I had to hike up my short legs onto the tall stool and sing my heart out and meanwhile my bladder felt like it would burst!
Craig can really-really
sing and I am not too good but I did my best and we made a great effort,
we even had a wee waltz at the end. The studio was mobbed with loads
of fund raisers and guests, the air was full of flying cameras and strong
lights and I was so happy we sang well.
The atmosphere was wonderful and we all knew it was for charity so we were all very supportive of each other and full of nerves. Craig is the consummate professional and never once made me feel nervous and encouraged me to sing my soul out I LOVE him.
It was a phone result and after the votes came through Craig and I were knocked out first we laughed our asses off and did breathe a wee sigh of relief because the next song we had to sing Letter from America was so bloody hard we kind of relaxed that we didnt have to go through with it, but it was such good fun that we all enjoyed the night.
There was such a party atmosphere backstage and God knows how that BBC Scotland staff managed all those people and all those kids and all those bloody short takes in between dealing with network BBC was amazing! I was impressed.
Husband called me
and told me he was very proud of me and said I had sexy legs
on TV, dad called me and told me You sat really nice on that stool
(nothing about my singing obviously) and Ashley was DJ-ing in a club
and said she could see me in silence as they kept the big screen on
in her club and she clapped as she saw me walk on.
One of the judges in the studio was Lamar the sexy black UK soul singer and he was so nice and gave me some lovely compliments ..cute black man mmmm the Sugarbabes were live in our studio also and they were so gorgeous and tiny and sang like sexy angels!
I had such a great night and may give up comedy to pursue a career in pop music now...AM JOKING, thanks to all who voted and supported the charity.
Tuesday the 21st
of November 2006
Extreme sports people .
Yet again two men
have been found after being lost in the Scottish mountains and died
later of hypothermia, its really sad but I have a theory and possibly
Big frozen hostile mountains in Scotland are not MEANT to be climbed by human beings especially in the WINTER TIME!
If you really want to get an adrenaline rush, then lock yourself into a two bedroom flat that is occupied with two mental unstable needle wielding junkies and a starving Alsatian dog, cut off the electricity and stay there until you find the exit. The worst that can happen is - you may get jagged with a dirty needle and bitten by a tufty mad dog, but the excitement will be awesome AND the air rescue people wont be involved.
I reckon when God (if it was him that made the earth) designed our world he did it in a certain way that people can live on the flat safe bits and scary animals like bears and wolves can live in the high frozen bits, same as the sea . we dont have the capability to breathe underwater so we STAY on the safe flats bits and dont get eaten by sharks and killed by sting-rays or other underwater predators that live there. It just makes sense.
I dont really understand people who pack stuff into a wee bag and decide to brave the elements and climb up a sheer snowy cliff face .doesnt make any sense at all to me. Its not as if there is a prize at the top?
Glasgow is freezing just now and if I could go to the shops with a feather duvet wrapped around me and tied at the waist with a rope then I would! I fucking hate the cold.
My idea of extreme sports is going to the local video store without wearing a bra, or peeing with the toilet door open, or having sex without brushing my teeth in the morning.
If you really need an adrenaline rush then buy adrenaline in injection form from a crooked nurse and hit up in your toilet, keep off our fucking frozen KILLER mountains you will die!
Saturday the 25th
of November 2006
Life in a Slump
There is so much
happening yet so much I can hardly talk about. In a strange way, I am
avoiding stuff that is happening. My brother is quite ill and dealing
with that has brought me closer to my own death in a way. I hate seeing
anyone ill and it scares me in case I am next.
I know thats
odd but it happens to me. I worry my self sick at times over impending
illnesss and death approaching
why does that happen?
On the other hand I am looking forward to Christmas; husband hates the whole season and becomes the man who hates trees and decorations. He actually told me he doesnt want the tree up this year, so I kicked him really hard in the shin and threw his mail on the floor.
Why does he do this?
I love my tree and there are wee decorations that Ashley made when she
was 5 years old, its a wee sticky Santa with cotton wool beard.
He has a real aversion
to Christmas and goes all Uncle Scrooge-like over the whole
thing. We have to drag him into the city to look at the lights, we have
to drag him up on Christmas day and make him eat dinner and wear a paper
hat, what the fuck is wrong with this man?
He wasnt that bad when Ashley was small, we have loads of old videos of our wee curly haired toddler ripping open presents as her groggy sleepy dad smiles at every single scream and giggle that comes out of her wee cute mouth. Now that she is older he feels he no longer has to become the happy James Stewart in Its a Wonderful Life and takes on the personality of the grumpy suicidal. I have no idea what goes on in his head.
Life is strange, I know my brother will be fine, I know Christmas will go without a hitch, but I still feel slightly ill at ease and I cant quite put my finger on why.
Maybe this is the menopause about to engulf my hormonal tide change, I wish it was as I am suffering the usual cluster bomb pain in my womb, I hate periods.
On a funny note I got the World Trade Centre film through from Bafta for my consideration and I hated the film.
I cannot believe
that Oliver Stone has made such shite. You have to see this American
jingo-istic pile of crud to know that sticking a screw driver into your
own eye is a good alternative.
In one scene after
the twin towers have been decimated, a man goes to see his priest and
declares God has told me I must go to the disaster zone and help,
I am an ex marine honestly
.how many Americans will declare
God made me do it.
The God-bothering marine then goes to the barbers to get his head shaved (surely with the impending situation a hair cut is hardly worth the bother, surely having thick hair doesnt make you less a marine?) then he gets out his old uniform and pops off to downtown New York. Like you do.
I thought he was
going to kill people in his madness with the God voice in his ear.
Anyway, he makes it to the disaster zone and finds buried people, helps them and then grabs his phone and actually says I am not coming back to work, I have to avenge this situation
What? On his fucking own? Avenge what? Anyway the end credits tell us that the marine re enlisted and went to serve in Iraq, I am sure his version of avengement in Iraq has been seen on You Tube.
What is Oliver Stone
doing? It made me cry with anger.
I am sure many wonderful
people did amazing brave wonderful things on 9/11 and it does show us
what humanity can do when pressed, but that pile of shite made me sad.
Everything is making sad today, I need to go check my Christmas tree and make sure husband hasnt thrown it out in his new recycling habit.
Monday the 27th
of November 2006
My First Marriage
I was 16 and it
was 1977, the year of punk in the UK, the year the Queen celebrated
her Silver Jubilee. It was 27th September and I was standing outside
the Palaceum Bar in my home town of Shettleston in Glasgows East
End. It was bitterly cold, frost was settling on the pavement giving
it a slippy-ness that made old people walk even slower.
I met the man who asked me to marry him; he was called Barra,
that was his nickname, he was born on 24th May 1962.
Let me tell you
He came from a big
family of Catholic housebreaking robbers (nice eh?) We chatted briefly
and recalled how we had known each other as wee kids. I didnt
really fancy him; I didnt really know what fancy-ing was to be
honest. I wasnt your average 16 year old sexy teenager. In fact
I looked like a boy to be truthful and was often mistaken for one. Not
that that fact puts a slant on Barras sexuality! I was chatty
and was interested in loads of stuff, but not sexy or sexual in the
Anyway we walked
together and he took me by the hand into this close (thats a long
public hallway in the Glasgow tenements) and we kissed for what seemed
ages and I got slightly worried because I had to get to work in the
morning and I had a curfew of 10pm. That time limit annoyed me as I
was working and surely an adult? But my mammy insisted I get home for
Time went on and
I had to stop the kissing for two reasons.
I didnt really like kissing
I didnt actually know this boy and wanted to look at him but the
darkness blurred my vision and every time we stopped kissing, I could
feel his face very close to mine and to ease that uncomfortable quiet
close scrutiny I kissed more!
We did eventually stop kissing and he brusquely grabbed my hand and led me out of the close and walked off into the cold and left me as if we had never been there in the first place. It was an odd feeling, like when you accidentally catch sight of some school friend naked at swimming class then meet them later standing at the school canteen. You know more about them than you needed to and now there sits that awkwardness that had never existed before. It was kind of like that.
Barra and I had
held hands, touched each others faces, lips had met, tongues had been
flickered and now we were strangers again. Maybe he was shyer than me?
I walked home in
the freezing cold and went over it in my head. It was nice and dangerous
and yet oddly I felt disconnected.
Maybe after kissing me he realised I was shite at it and left disappointed? Who knew? Not me!
I went to work the next day and when I got home I ran round to the Italian Café where I hung out with my mates. The Italian Café was our local place to be and there was a man who worked there we called Spock because he really did look like Mister Spock from Star Trek. His long brown face, sharp arched eyebrows, flat dark shiny hair that came to a point on his forehead made him a real point of attention for us kids. Spock can I have 20p tub of ice cream? he never blinked or reacted which made us even more convinced he was a Vulcan. He was the only man who never got the usual two finger salute from us cheeky kids; we always gave him the open palm V sign that made Spock famous on TV!
Anyway my pal Elaine
was there; she was two years younger than me and had just finished school.
I kissed last night walking home from my sisters house?
Before we could
react to my exciting information, I turned and there Barra was standing
behind me. He looked angry and mumbled something to me and indicated
that we go outside with one finger pointing to the door.
I was so shocked, I didnt expect to see him and now was horrified that he had heard me tell Elaine, maybe he didnt want anyone to know?
Holy Fuck! I thought
I am in trouble. I knew he was violent and had heard about him fighting
and stabbing people, he had a reputation. Was he going to slap me or
something? I was shaken and slowly pushed through the queue and walked
He stood there;
around him were a few older guys that I knew were friends of my older
brother. They all nodded when they saw me and then carried on chatting.
I stared at my shoes,
they were shiny black brogues that were in fashion at that time, women
wearing middle classed mens shoes? Who knows? Anyway I stood and
avoided eye contact. The glare of the café lights lit the whole
he whispered near my face.
I looked up and
saw his very blond hair, extremely blue eyes and pale skin and secretly
wondered if he was actually German!
I answered. Teenagers can be very monosyllabic when it suits them.
He lifted up my chin and kissed me there in front of everyone. I recall being so embarrassed and could hear people laughing.
I pushed him off
and expected to see young guys pointing and laughing at me but they
were all in other conversations, till one looked over and said Barra
you coming to the pub?
I will catch
up you go he said. He could get into pubs and buy beer.
He was only 15 but did look much older, he had a blond moustache growing and had a weary grown-up face, and also his familys reputation guaranteed that not many people gave him trouble. They were a just a bunch of petty criminals, though two of his brothers were serving time for robbing a post office in Glasgow.
Can we meet later? he seemed so confident and adult now.
we meet? he added smiling.
I said, I didnt have many other places to go in Shettleston, it
wasnt like a sprawling metropolis with memorable landmarks and
meeting places, it was either the café or the grave yard and
I didnt think the grave yard sounded romantic enough!
Do you drink?
he asked me as he went to walk off.
I replied then suddenly wondered if he meant alcohol, which I didnt
drink but I did drink Irn Bru (Scottish soft drink), and I thought maybe
he wanted to bring me a can of Irn Bru as a gift and then all of that
sounded mental and I added I drink but nothing alcohol just mainly
water, tea and Irn Bru and sometimes milk
The stupid words all came out of my stupid mouth and he laughed out loud as he walked to open the pub door next to the café and shouted They dont sell milk, see you in an hour.
I had a boyfriend!
I worked way up
in Castlemilk, which was 10 miles from Glasgows East End and attended
night school in Barmulloch which was 15 miles from Castlemilk! My nights
and days were taken up with public transport and working in an old folks
Barra and I would get together two or three nights a week. We never went to my house as he was very shy about meeting my mammy and I never wanted him there as my house was so dirty and poor looking and sometimes the electric had been disconnected. So we spent most of the time hanging around closes, sitting in the cold street, chatting in the café or waiting on him getting a bus back to Easterhouse where he lived.
He would occasionally go to the pub with his brother and I would wait for him to come out, kiss for a wee while, wait for him to get on the bus and then go home. It wasnt an exciting courtship, pretty boring to be honest and he never really spoke much.
The kissing never
went further than cuddling up against the cold and that suited me totally.
He never asked me or pushed me further into anything more.
One Saturday he came to see me, unusually he was waiting for me at the bottom on my street. I could see him standing there, pacing and chatting to his older brother. I worried what may have happened, maybe yet another police charge for him (he had been pulled in by the police a few times since we had been seeing each other).
I reached him and
he was staring nervously at me, his brother was rubbing his chin and
stood then stood with his back to me.
Janey, I fell
asleep last night at this girls house and we woke up together
in bed and I think something happened, you know what I mean he
stammered this out.
I looked at his brother who finally made eye contact, Barra stood there watching my face. I was touched that he had needed support to tell me this, I actually felt odd, because his demeanour required a reaction and I didnt have one. I didnt care if he had sex with another girl, I really didnt and that moment scared me, because it meant he thought more of this relationship than me.
care, if you are shagging someone it means you wont be pestering
me I blurted out.
pester you he shouted angrily.
His brother walked
away and Barra let him go. We walked together and got up to the café.
He looked so sad
and I kept reassuring him it was fine, I was OKabout it. In my naivety,
I thought placating him and ignoring his mistake was being
a good girlfriend he realised that it meant I didnt really
care enough to be angry. I was NEW to all these dating things remember.
That night as we stood wrapped up in each other kissing in the close he pulled my face close, I could smell the beer on his breath and I hated that, he then whispered I love you Janey
I was shocked, I
didnt know what I was supposed to say so I added Me too
then realised that wasnt actually an answer.
Barra pushed me out of the hug and spat Fucksake, do you know how long it took me to say that and walked away from me out into the cold.
We made up eventually, but we hardly spoke on a real deep level, he mostly sat on a step then got drunk and I chatted away about pop music, people at work, my studies, my latest art project, my mammy, my nephew, my favourite things, my yearning to travel, my political opinion and so much more as he just sat and stared at me.
When pressed he never had an opinion on anything, he had no intention to get a job, had no thoughts on his future, shrugged when asked what he wanted to be when older and over all never made any comments about anything. It bored me to death .I had a million things to do.
One night when we were walking back from the close to the bus stop (we did this every night we met, it was fucking freezing and I worked daily) we met an old friend of his mums.
how are you? she asked in a jolly way.
Am great Mrs
Wilson - hows the boys? he answered.
Is this your
new girlfriend? Your mammy said you had a new lassie she smiled
Aye this is
Janey, she is a
..college person he beamed She goes
to a college at night and does college things he stammered over
his words, he was trying to boast about me but forgot the word for people
who attend college.
I am a part time student studying English and Art I said.
Why would you do that shite? You not getting married? I heard you were getting married Barra the old woman added.
Barra blushed and mumbled something and we walked off.
I was horrified
and staring at the wet pavement as we headed for the bus stop.
Come up to
see my mammy tonight? he asked me.
I have work
in the morning and youre a bit drunk, are you sure? I tried
to wangle out of it. He pleaded and I agreed.
We ended up on the
long dreary bus ride to Easterhouse. The old ramshackle green bus trundled
through the dimly lit streets heading out of the city and into the outlying
Finally we got to his street and walked the short distance to his six in a block 1940s three bedroomed flats. His home was warm and smelled clean. I had met his wee mammy and dad before, just a regular nice middle aged, working class couple, except his mum looked older and beaten down by life; she had a small thin frame and wispy grey hair pulled back from her face. They had raised seven kids, most of which had ended up in trouble with the police.
I sat there and accepted the cup of tea, his mum smiled and chatted away to me and Barra sat there huddled near the fire.
Janey will you marry me? he blurted out.
I was stunned by the remark, he looked at me, his mum looked at me, his dad stared at me and I clenched everything in my body with sheer terror and shock. In the background a clock ticked, a cat stretched and meowed on the chair and everyone waited for my answer.
I dont want to get married, I want to go and paint the Taj Mahal were the only words that came tumbling out of my mouth.
The Taj Mahal? Is that a restaurant in Parkhead? Barra said Why would you want to paint that?
No its in India I think, its beautiful and I want to travel and maybe go to Australia, I like kangaroos I added words . just fucking weird words kept coming out of the big hole in the front of my head.
The room went silent, I stared at the flowery cup in my hand, I could feel the glow from the fire on my face mixed in with the utter horror and embarrassment that swept over me, what was wrong with me? Who else mentions kangaroos in the middle of a marriage proposal?
You are only fifteen Barra, I am only sixteen and havent finished my studies, we are really too young the first sensible words came out.
You can leave college, you said that it costs too much didnt you? We can get a house near your mas and we can have kids, they dont have to be Catholic he looked at me speaking for the first time since I had mentioned Indian Palaces and kangaroos.
You have to pay for college? his mammy asked.
Yes, its night school but I work all week and can afford it I replied I really want to get some qualifications so I can get a good job, I hate kids and dont want a council house in Shettleston
What do you want to work at hen? his dad asked me.
I want to ..I am not sure really, but I want to travel I spoke quietly, annoyed at my own lack of direction.
It was the beginning of the end. As I left his flat that night his mammy took me by the arm at her door and said Go hen, go do what you want to do, marriage isnt everything and my boys are bad news, I love them but you go see that Taj Mahal
Barra and I broke up after that New Year, we really ran out of things to say I think. He was also accused of mugging an old man for his whisky on the way home from a shop and I was dragged into the police office for questioning as the police thought I may have witnessed something. I hadnt but I knew that wasnt what I wanted in my life. I never wanted to be involved in police issues. (Well we all know how that turned out! I got charged with possessing guns in our house in 1994 - sometimes you cant avoid that stuff)
I still have a poster of the Taj Mahal.
I never did see it, I still havent been to Australia and chased kangaroos, but I did meet another man who was born on the 24th of May 1962, outside the Palaceum bar and I did marry him on 27th September in 1980 (the day I met Barra in 1977). Strange coincidence? Who knows?
But I think I got the right man. Last I heard, Barra was selling drugs to kids in the street and has been in and out of prison for years now.
Wednesday the 29th
of November 2006
Meeting Jesus in the street
Yes I did meet him,
he was about fifty years old, smelled like a cats ear and had a beard
that owls lived in but he said he was Jesus and I didnt want to
be the Doubting Thomas of my generation, mostly because I am not called
Thomas and the other reason was - what if he really was Jesus and I
called him a fucking smelly old bastard?
be very welcoming to a man that came a long way and expected a party
on his arrival would it?
I am Jesus
the son of God, He shouted at me as I tried to squeeze plastic
bottles into the recycling bin that husband makes me go to. Every time
I leave home I have to carry various plastic shapes and shove them into
an unfeasibly small hole in the big green wheelie thing.
So I smiled and
said Hello Jesus, you must be glad to get shot of those sandals
what with Glasgow being freezing?
Yes, I am
glad, now have you any money for me? he snarled through black
teeth as a big squawking crow flew out of his beard (that didnt
really happen but I imagined it could, I was bored
.Jesus is quite
boring and demanding).
No I am sorry, I gave most of my spare cash to the Catholic lady shaking a can at the end of the road, but since you are Jesus I did indirectly give it you I smiled.
gives it to me he shouted and things that I am not sure of rattled
in his big dirty over coat.
Catholics for you I answered.
She will give
that money to the Vatican and they will buy gold shit with it
Yes, I suppose
being Jesus that stuff must belong to you then eh? You should go to
Rome and claim it back and buy cider with it or give it to poor people
with it he confirmed and nodded his big woolly dirty head and
rubbed his face with coal miners fingers, all black and grimy.
They never give it to poor people and I dont need any more statues He spoke as I finally shoved the last green plastic bottle in.
Well I am
sorry Jesus, I am saving all my spare cash as your birthday at Christmas
costs lots of money and I need to buy a Playstation 3 for my daughter
I sarcastically threw into the conversation with our dirty Messiah.
He swung round and
his dirty big coat let out a reek of piss and booze, he bowed elaborately,
pointed one toe and then grabbed my arm and swung me under it singing
King of the Road at the top of his voice.
People watched -
shop keepers peeped through windows and old people crossed the road
to avoid me and Jesus having a bit of a dance.
We stopped and I finally inhaled a breath (the smell was rotten; Jesus has very questionable hygiene habits). He kissed the back of my hand and ran down the road with his dirty coat flapping in the cold wind screaming Fuck off, I want cider.
Jesus must really
like cider and there was us all believing he liked wine
I hope he gets a bath before Christmas, he was a nice man, bit smelly and nothing like I imagined him to be, but at least I got to meet him.