Records I bought included:
Transient Random Noise Bursts With Announcements, Four-Calendar Cafe, Pendulum
4/1/93: Back to therapy
Number One hits in the UK:
2 Unlimited - No Limit, Shaggy - Oh Carolina, The Bluebells - Young At Heart,
George Michael/Queen/Lisa Stansfield - Five Live EP, Ace of Base - All That
She Wants, UB40 - I Can't Help Falling In Love With You, Gabrielle - Dreams,
Take That - Pray, Freddie Mercury - Living On My Own, Culture Beat - Mr.Vain,
DJ Jazzy Jeff/Fresh Prince - Boom Shake The Room, Take That feat. Lulu - Relight
My Fire, Meat Loaf - I Would Do Anything For Love (But I Won't Do That), Mr
Blobby - Mr Blobby, Take That - Babe
11/1/93: Sarah Griffin started today. Therapy: "You've got tits!!!"
But all roads lead off the cliff...
1/2/93: Dreams of Sue B, Clare V, Jackie S. The Catacomb Abyss.
8/2/93: I own one-fifth of a new PA desk. Sometimes I hate this band!!! I would
like to be able to leave, and also therapy. But...
19/2/93: My "Note and Query" in the Guardian!
25/2/93: Went to work but didn't get there (tube delay plus my still feeling unwell).
27/2/93: "Be Glad" at the Rio & Richard.
3/3/93: Bought 2 x 1MB Ram for £60
9/3/93: Open day at Bedford Hill - 3 visitors!
16/3/93: Not in touch in staff group. Where are my feelings hiding?
17/3/93: Went to Psion to get s3 fixed. Paddy's night in the Vic.
20/3/93: Bought "Elvira" and "Ultima Underworld".
27/3/93: First day of a/l. It rained solidly for the two weeks! Max to stay.
29/3/93: Did the garden, had a bonfire.
30/3/93: Went to Glastonbury with Max.
1/4/93: We (Chanter) did a session for GLR.
3/4/93: Chris Evans' last GLR show.
12/4/93: Very funny DB show, solo on Bank Holiday Monday.
15/4/93: Gig in Luton, nobody there!
23/4/93: A frustrating session, she kept missing the point.
30/4/93: Bought DOS 6. Planning men's group with Paul.
7/5/93: I want to quit therapy.
11/5/93: Drinks at Baker Street with Simon - this was when he first mentioned
14/5/93: She's bloody miles away, on her own hill...
16/5/93: Ben & Christine wedding
19/5/93: Feeling good about it... no more grinning skeletons!
12/6/93: Dylan at fleadh, us at Robey
24/6/93: Bought Carrera PC and loads of games
30/6/93: On my way to my final therapy session ever. Last
night's gig was ok - I sang a duet with Alan Stivell on "The Foggy Dew" - even
though Bazza Dransfield didn't turn up and Stivell's sound was fucked. So here
I am, a bit tired and weary but clear-headed enough to launch into whatever comes
next. I have £50 in my pocket and intend to go to Victoria station after my session,
then to get on a train to the coast.
(Later) So that's how it happens, is it? No bells, books nor candles, no apes,
ivories nor peacocks. Just her, there, as she's always been - and as she will
continue to be, but without me from now on. There is life after therapy, there
is life after sadness. And yet I could have backed out of either, had I chosen.
I don't know if I'd have been able to be unemotional, but I didn't have to go.
There were no flags flying, no bells ringing. 16 New Cavendish street is still
standing, still going on. People coming in and going out, but not me any more.
She was infuriating and wonderful as ever, referring to Dad leaving me and how
it seemed that I created a leaving just as I was approaching that one - or was
it Carolyn leaving me that I was approaching? Either way they seem like the two
most important people who have ever left me. So now I've left someone and I want
her to be proud of me, want her to accept a gift without modifying it and giving
it back to me.
Well now I'm on a 38 bus just leaving Victoria station. I've no idea where I'm
going but when I got to Victoria I didn't feel like going any of the places that
trains go to from there, or spending the money, so I was about to go home when
I realised I didn't want to go straight home, either. So now I'm on a bus. And
already the emotion seems to be fading a bit as I look at the people on the streets
on this hot, sunny, June morning.
2/7/93: Regrading hearing - me scale 6!!! Evening chez Louise *2 Fuck
fuck fuck fuck FUCK. The appeal hearing for my regrading is this afternoon and
I've got a headache and I feel sick. If I had drunk a lot last night I'd say I
had a hangover. Anyway I got up quite early and had a bath (I'm on a late) then
sat down to write out my case on my PC. Got as far as I could given the time factor,
then just before I had to leave for work I decided to print it. What a time to
run out of fucking ink!!! The best thing I could do was import the file (as unformatted
text) to my s3 (thank heavens for Psion) and keep it here, but what a bugger,
eh? Anyway, here's how it went...
3/7/93: Well I got my regrading!!! Scale 6, effective from 1st May 1991! I don't
know quite what that will mean in financial terms, but maybe quite a bit. PB was
excellent, I was very nervous and panicky and CM was totally squashed - and if
we hadn't won I'd have been flabbergasted. So now I'm scale 6 and the fight is
on to bring my co-workers up to my level. I'm working today (Saturday) with Alam,
the day after an evening chez Louise. So Sarah is going to get married next year!
My, but she was bubbly, fizzy, giggly and stoned!
(Later) OMWTG having not played last night (at Louise's) and I'm missing Paul's
housewarming party because of it. Wjy? I'm not so tied to the band that I can't
take time off... However, I do need the money still - I haven't yet (obviously)
started to feel the benefits of no therapy! Also, yesterday I became a scale 6
worker, backdated to 1st May 1991, and I think I've sold my old PC for £350.
This adds to approx. £400 in my account and - who knows how much back pay
I'll get, and when? How rich am I?
4/7/93: What a typical work day is like: 5.00pm and
I've just left work. At times I get so angry with the people that go there! The
day started with S asking me & Paul to play Scrabble and eventually we gave
in. We had to sit on table three with him and B, who both chain smoked and I was
getting really irritated with that - and then J arrived and said that it was a
diabolical liberty that the staff took up all the space at the smoking tables!
Fuck them all! This afternoon was a glorious sunny day and the cafe was full of
people who had been there all day. Now I can understand people wanting a cheap
meal and some company, but how can they choose to spend seven hours in a hot,
smelly, stuffy, noisy pace like that, with the sun shining down outside? Why don't
they go and sit somewhere cool?
So I went out to get a can of Coke, and as soon as I came back into the cafe T
tried to grab it from me to see if it was aluminium - and I got annoyed. I said
it was my drink, and she was welcome to do what she wanted with the empty can,
but for now it was still full of Coke and mine.
And then, after last food orders, tempers start to fray. Someone wants sandwiches
and is angry because we don't do them at weekends. Three separate regular users
are asked not to smoke on a no-smoking table (I am accused of petty bureaucracy).
Someone is too late for a meal. T complains when I try to throw away her apple
core and then starts talking to herself. There is a complaint because we will
be closed on Wednesday (we're taking them to the fucking seaside for god's sake)
and then P starts winding up J and A, saying that J's in love with her. By the
time they finally leave among complaints of "The staff want us to go home"
I'm at the end of my emotional tether and have no energy to get into anything
at all. If P.A. were to arrive I would behave as Andrew allegedly did.
7/7/93: The dork on the tube. I'm on my way in to work and
there's some dork sitting next to me writing in his diary about "I believe
my surroundings fit perfectly my state of mind", "My senses tell me
the cosmos is in a state of decay", "I am a spiritual being", "These
surroundings preceded me and must have either always existed or have been created
by someone else", "the appropriateness of creation to my needs",
"steady-state theories of cosmos seem to lack the mechanisms and evidences
necessary" - what a dickhead! I don't know quite why he irritates me so much,
except that he's wearing a pink striped shirt with no tie, blue corduroy trousers
and he's a pimply bloke with razor rash and dandruff in his greying hair. He writes
in a small scribbly font on a spiral-bound jotter with earnest, who is he trying
to convince? He seems more a city-bound twat who has fastened on to new age than
any religious or free being (like Sarah - the complete antithesis who is ok about
it all and can see the funny side). And as if he weren't enough, there's an ad
in today's Guardian (Wednesday) for somebody to work for Jesus...
18/7/93: A weird dream sequence last night, but first a
bit of history: I went to Tottenham Hale and then Wood Green and finally bought
the lock for the door - I'll probably fit it today or tomorrow - and also the
ingredients for the Chicken Basquaise recipe from Delia Smith. It was going fine
until I burned the bottom of the thing in my new casserole!
So the dream... Well I was going to a gig but the staircase collapsed and I'd
been sharing a room with Andy who turned into Mum and so couldn't bring me my
cup of tea in the morning so I had to go and get my own but Clive had fucked up
the kitchen and then the house started to collapse and Norman managed to rescue
me but my guitar was buried in the rubble and so I had to buy a new one before
the gig - is this all I can remember? It seemed to have much more logical sense
earlier on this morning!
One week into my annual leave and I seem to have spent all of it playing X-Wing,
Wolfenstein, Monkey Island, Alone In The Dark, and Darkseed.
12/8/93: Mame arrived home from NZ
19/8/93: Galanga (a kind of hot ginger) 19/8/93: I went
to Chinatown this morning and bought galanga (a kind of strong ginger), lemon
grass, shrimp paste, tamarind and other bits for "Far Flung Browning".
What will I cook, and when?
(Later) I am on my way HOME having pulled out of tonight's gig - I just felt I
didn't want to do it. So instead I have a bag full of frozen prawns and squid,
Far Flung Floyd (the book) and John Lennon's biography.
20/8/93: And today I have hot fingers. Yes, hot fingers. Due to chopping chillies.
To mix with galanga (a kind of strong ginger), lemon grass, shallots, garlic,
ginger (a kind of mild galanga), lime juice, and olive oil. And, as has happened
before, my fingers (or, more specifically, my thumbs) are now hot. Hmm. Hot fingers,
20/8/93: Cafe windows smashed
28/8/93: Bought Lotus Ami Pro. Also gig in Vic as a 7-piece - I WANT OUT!!!
13/9/93: Israel and Palestine at peace!
16/9/93: A typical group (Louise on leave so me facilitating it alone):
P began by telling us that her knee was much better - she had been given an old-fashioned
remedy which involved rubbing warm olive oil and salt into it. She said it was
marvellous, and it really worked! P and R seemed to do nearly all the talking
for the first half hour or so, while I felt quite angry with them. P said that
she had phoned Mike the previous night and that he was feeling better. P spoke
of things being much better in the old days - specifically when clocks had to
be wound up by hand. R and her agreed that they didn't like the new clocks that
you have to put a battery in. They also spoke of not being unable to keep unwanted
strangers away, like Jehova's witnesses and door-to-door salesmen, despite R having
put a sticker on her door saying that visitors would not be seen without an appointment.
The group felt very divided at this point, with them doing all the talking and
it felt like S, H and myself were waiting, a bit impatient. I had a vision of
P and R as two fat old ladies who were refusing to budge from "their"
seats at a theatre, or something. I tried to relate something of what they'd been
saying to the group situation with new people coming in - perhaps unwanted, or
unknown? Both denied this very quickly and said they wanted to hear what S and
H had to say. P did refer to themselves as "old fogies", and she said
she thought I was an old fogy too. I resented that! Especially since I was feeling
far more sympathetic towards S and H.
Within 5 minutes of the group starting P had said "We do miss Louise, don't
we?" and R said yes... By now all four were smoking and for the rest of the
group there was always at least one of them smoking. P said "I don't even
like the taste, I just like sucking on something" - I kept my mouth shut.
Later on, P said to H and S "I told Jerry and R this earlier, but I phoned
my boyfriend last night and he's feeling better" and I commented that H and
S had been there at the time, and that it seemed as if P had not aware of that.
R is not feeling very well, she says she had a headache yesterday. She worries
about her boyfriend and other people said that they'd seen him and he didn't look
well. P phoned Mike ("He's my boyfriend") and he said that he's feeling
better. They may go out for a meal when he's better. P's church has been watching
"The Ten Commandments" in instalments for a few weeks now (a snigger
from H) but she had to miss the last one because she was ill. She thinks they'll
probably show it again, though, for her. I commented that neither P nor R had
been at the previous group, and perhaps they might have missed something? P seemed
to ignore this and told us that they were going to watch "Jesus of Nazareth"
next - she and R then talked about how good Robert Powell was in it, even though
he wasn't a religious man. H sniggered again.
All four of them were smoking quite heavily throughout the group and my eyes were
stinging - I also got indigestion at one point. I felt quite angry and uncomfortable.
R said that H had a nice handbag and H said that she had bought a new one because
she was fed up with her bumbag. R said that she'd been to buy a bumbag but they
didn't have one which would go around her waist! This set them talking about food
and who was, or wasn't, fat. H has been angry at her hostel recently because people
have been getting up in the middle of the night and helping themselves to food,
and leaving the kitchen in a mess. She thinks this is very selfish, and she wants
them to put a lock on the kitchen door. S said that they have the same problem
at his hostel. He said that he had been talking to a member of staff there about
leaving and moving on, and the staff member had said "Oh, we don't want you
all to move on too fast, otherwise we'd be out of a job". They then talked
for a bit about whether carers really cared, or whether they were doing a job,
and also about the lack of money available to fund new hostel beds for people
who might want them. R said that H's hostel is awful and she hated it when she
was there - H laughed again and, when prompted, said that she didn't hate it,
she thought it was probably the way she was feeling that affected how she felt
about other people and places.
I was fairly quiet during a lot of this talk, reflecting on how at least it felt
better that all four of them were now interacting. But I did make a few comments
when themes seemed to have connections with the group, or the centre, and I got
little response. In retrospect I wonder whether, at times like that, P and R came
in rather too quickly with either a denial or an anecdote, and so prevented H
and S from spending too much time thinking about what I had said.
P told us that she thought the funniest films ever made were "Genevieve"
and "Doctor in the House" - they were beautiful films. H said she thought
Jurassic Park was a beautiful film - especially the bit where the dinosaur eats
the baby goat.
By now the room was very smoky and my eyes were stinging. S told us of a couple
of occasions recently when he had been mistrusted - once when he could not buy
a tube ticket because the ticket office was closed and an inspector did not believe
him, and this led to a discussion of "The Cook Report", the previous
night on TV, when Roger Cook had replaced the fuse on a number of televisions
with a blown one, and then called in a number of different repairmen.
18/9/93: Danny Baker After All on TV - disappointing.
21/9/93: Went to see Hair with Paul
2/10/93: 1.30pm, Sitting on a bus bound for Walthamstow,
where I will get on another bus to Chingford, and then to check out the tiling
for my bathroom. It is STILL raining. My plan is to go from Chingford to Wood
Green, then home via the chorizo shop. Well that's sort of what I did. It finally
stopped raining at about 3.15, but as I travel to Holloway again at 8.30pm it
seems to have been raining again most of the afternoon and evening. So. Max is
coming to stay tonight (I've just dribbled Ribena all down my front and I'm all
sticky, sorry), he called me just as I was getting into the bath at about 7.00
tonight. Roddy and Matt are both off tonight. Random notes as they occur. Must
bring my plants in tomorrow. Go to Tottenham Hale and buy an iron? Whuffo? Whuffo
me wan' buy no iron? For me to get flat clothes, fool. Whuffo me wan' flat clothes?
For me look COOL, guy. For me pull CHICKS, man. Pull ptitsas. Hunh.
8/10/93: Bought Psion Series3a
11/10/93: Bathroom being done this week. Drinks tonight with Andy, Simon and Mark
21/10/93: Gig in The Swan with work colleagues.
29/10/93: Danny Baker's last Morning Edition on Radio 5. Starting Radio one shows
tomorrow morning. Shower finished, but it leaks!
1/11/93: Day trip to Cambridge. Penny Berry in the Guardian.
4/11/93: Feeling low and unwell. I kind of quit the band tonight - a month off,
6/11/93: Bought CD-ROM and 7th Guest.
9/11/93: Going to work today, I just did something that
I have never done before, nor ever seen anyone else do other than in movies or
cartoons. I slipped on a banana skin. I was at Stockwell station and my foot skidded.
My first thought was that I had stepped in some sick, but when I looked the floor
was dry. Also my foot did not slip again, as I might have expected had it been
wet. And then I saw it. A FUCKING BANANA SKIN.
So what else from today? Well I spent quite a lot of time on the phone trying
to get the f***ing photocopier fixed, and then trying to sort out RL's telephone
arrangements. Umgunty was off today and so I was in the office with Marilyn. Whenever
Margaret or Charles came in I thought I was quite polite and witty, so maybe I
made a god impression. Or a good impression. Or a God impression? How would I
do a God impression? Create a new world in seven days? Or six? Six new worlds
in seven days? Seven days and one for resting is eight. A pretty average sort
of week at Bedford Hill. We create worlds.
17/11/93: England out of the world cup after an appalling game where we (they)
beat San Marino 7-1. God alone knows how.
18/11/93: "I was wiv Karen, Darren, Garen and Sharon, man,
an it was like wickid man, an we wuz in da barfroom man, an like Lisa was out
man and dem not lettin off fireworks on Hampstead Heef, man" - Overheard while
waiting for a bus - "Ma naat fuckin' 'er, guy! Even nif she fling di pussy aan
mi!" Nice guys, meet 'em everywhere. So now I'm zoomin' down Green Lanes at a
fousan' mile a nour, man! At least I hope it's Green Lanes, it looks suspiciously
like Clissold Park to me. Oh no, we're ok. No prob.
6/12/93: Frank Zappa is dead! Dinner after work at "Eco's" pizza place
- I made the mistake of eating an "oyster mussel" and was sick all night
8/12/93: "Holy God, what is dis?" "Wedder." "Wedder? Wedder?
What wedder? Did you write dis wedder? I could have writted better wedder meself!"
- From which you gather that it is foul outside. It blows, it sucks, it chucks
wetness at you, it is nasty. Windy. Gale-y. Typhoon-y. Well, maybe I exaggerate
a little bit, but it really is horrible! I'm OMWTG (and I won't be using that
term much more) on Wednesday night, the Chanter Christmas party in the Vic. I
wouldn't be at all surprised if there are not many people there - did I mention
that it's kinda windy out? Well I took a little drink about an hour ago (actually
about half an hour ago, but it would have been Jim Morrison's 50th birthday today,
so that was a wee tribute) and I - took a look around, see which way the wind
blow! Every bloody way! So anyway, there's this green muck on my boot...
10/12/93: Last Chanter gig in the Weavers. Very windy, fence blown down.
25/12/93: Working with Alam & Sarah. Evening at Zetter's with video. I bought
mum a coffee maker which she was too scared to use.