26 October 2007

If ever I'm feeling a little glum, the best cure I find is to simply mull over that precise expression of melancholy.

Feeling a little glum

I imagine a gnome-like creature, small, round and fantastical (perhaps even Tolkeinesque), being tickled to death by little roving hands whilst it wears a resolutely grim facial contortion, before it cracks up in hysterical glee. This always causes a fleeting smile and snigger, therefore banishing the former gloom.

The glumness is solved by envisaging Glums. Glums being felt up.

20 October 2007

Thankyadada for taking us to Wagamama

Despite the excess of ambient noise, it was an excellent choice of restaurant.

Jam packed with punters and bustling with hungry hip young things, the canteen style layout is perfect for chatty social interaction. Bevies of efficient, yet mildly stressed, waiting staff sweep up and down the length of the tables, bowing to one's every need and self-indulgent gluttonous whim.

It is astonishing what powers a serving of hot, deliciously fragrant, invitingly comforting food can possess. The disgruntled twittering of malcontent that had previously filled the air quickly abated once cavernous vessels yielding fragrant fancies were placed before wide-eyed souls.
I almost drowned in a big bowl of aromatic noodle soup, laced with coconut and chilli and studded with chunks of tofu. When delving into it I may easily have been lost forever if I hadn't had my feet wrapped around the table leg and a brother on hand to fish me out.

Noodles submerged in an oily broth and chopsticks does not make for attractive eating. Spattering myself (and anything that was in a five metre radius of my gesticulating arms) in globules and flecks of yumminess, we shouted happily above the din, cheeks full and chops smeared with grease. Messy eating, especially in public, really is the best. It makes for funny and amiable babbling, yakking away nineteen to the dozen, whilst making a contented fool of oneself.

The philosophy of the place is 'Wham-bam-thank-you-mam!' Dishes come thick and fast, senses are all heightened (bright eyes, smells abounding, getting hot at the frenzy of it all), and there's only two chefs. No, three - 'I didn't see that little one there' - only a voraciously bobbing red hat visible above the counters. So much is going on, in terms of movement, sound, and taste explosions, one could almost forget that it was 'family outing' and that families are supposed to bicker and argue and not get on. This is the magic of such a place, it makes people rub along jolly well. Even people who are related. Super choice, five stars.

Just don't prod my stomach. It may burst with a satisfied pop.

7 October 2007

Horseplay for Philistines

Of course I felt awful. But Dad said it took him the best part of his life to realise that if he wasn't enjoying a book it was not actually compulsory to finish it. What is the point if you are willing the end to come with all your might and the book in question is soul destroying? It is a waste of time. You could be doing something infinitely more pleasurable and fulfilling.
I applied this same logic to a play.

It did make it worse that the first time I walked out of a performance was at the esteemed Globe theatre. BUT, I hasten to add, it was not Shakespeare, which would, of course, be sacrilege. Instead, it was some political drama (if one could call a lot of men sitting around in period clothing voting on matters of Government 'drama' as such) that documented American goings on within state arounf the time of Franklin etc. So it was to be expected really.

I love the Globe, and the whole ambience of the inspirational setting. Even the venue, with all its Shakespeare in Love connections, was not enough to redeem this play. The accents were dire, ranging from caricature hillbilly, to variations of Irish and Scottish (which at least was entertaining in its way) and there was an awful lot of thespian posturing, and placing of cast members within the audience. A frankly terrifying notion, as I was in a constant anticipatory state of dread that they would explode into action right beside me.

And so it was that I left in the interval (I would never be so rude as to leave mid-actorly gesture or speech) for the Tate Modern. Along with half the audience. Alas, poor production company. And for shame at leaving in the middle. I do harbour insecurities about not sticking it through, but really... American politics?

Incidentally, and incomprehensibly, there was a horse brought on a little while into the performance. It added absolutely nothing to, well, anything really. I suppose it was merely there to be talked about later, poor thing. 'Did you see that awful American history lesson masquerading as a production? You know, the one with the horse?'
Animal cruelty at its height- being the mascot for a truly mind-numbingly bad play.
Adds a new understanding to the phrase 'even wild horses couldn't hold me back'. This one couldn't hold me back from the exit point.

2 October 2007

A mere whisp of the Big Smoke

'Where the devil have you been?', I hear you cry en masse. 'What the Dickens have you been getting up to?', you add as an afterthought.

Well, I'll tell you what I haven't been doing. And that is watching 'Neighbours'. Alas, my intellect has been called for elsewhere. And it certainly is necessary for all brain cells to be present in order to get off at the right bus stop, dodge raindrops effectively, and use all their strength for keeping my arm affixed to my body when lugging bloody great literary tomes around. That 'Riverside Chaucer' will be the death of me. On the plus side, I'm starting to resemble Popeye after the spinach magic. Only in one arm though.

Disregarding the loss of 'Neighbours' (I softly sob in sweet lament of this afternoon delight) I am attuning to the quirks and quaintness of our fine capital.
I shall give a taster of the observations I have made of late.
The library is organised in a nuts fashion. One could get lost in a dusty corner and never experience natural light again. Or, indeed, a common sense approach to alphebetisation.
Jeremy Bentham has his own pub. Which is marvellously cosy but a little overpriced. Now, is that the most happiness for the most people? At £5 for a large glass of wine, I think not. Though it is pleasing to see his brightly coloured features leering down at one from the pub sign.
Tutors all have their bizarre oddities. They are either named after Greek lute players, have disturbingly long fingernails for a middle aged man in corduroy, have a penchant, or even a fetish, for dashes in text, resemble Miss Cackle from 'The Worst Witch', or have fascinatingly lyrical names like Dr Ardis Butterfield.
The bus seems to be the place to be when the 'Dad gene' kicks in and I stare at people gormlessly without realising it. Totally captivating.
Large stacks of mattresses are transported from lorry to building in the middle of the street. Mattresses that I shall, in time, be laying my head on. Atleast I can see that they're doing something to my soon-to-be abode. I'll have a bed of sorts at any rate.
I actually have to read for the English course. A lot.

There are a billion other things too. But I can't recall off the top of my head. The cranial matter needs a rest. That is what 'Neighbours' is for.