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Monday, June 28

Aimless Weekend

So here I was, all set for the weekend, but with fuck all to do. To be honest, that's been the case for not only the past few weekends, but also for most weekdays. Although I've had the two overarching tasks of getting a job and getting myself sorted for the move to Germany, there hasn't been too much to do on a daily basis.

I guess this is why I struggle to get out of bed at a reasonable hour. There just seems like no point in doing so, because anything that does need doing can be done in the afternoon, or even late at night. 24-hour internet banking, automated bill payments, watching DVDs, tidying my room, even going to the supermarket, can all be done in the evening or at night. Why should I bother getting up at 9am every day for no reason? Added to this is the fact that morning TV is crap, whereas in the afternoons Wimbledon is on...

So anyway, I didn't get out of bed on Saturday until my usual midday slot, and even then it was a struggle. Bed manufacturers should stop making them so damn comfortable, if only for people like me.

I headed into the living room, where a few of my housemates were watching something like CD:UK or some other kid's crap Saturday morning TV (although we were all addicted when we were kids, right?). They told me that they were planning to go out and play football in the afternoon, and asked if I was up for it too.

Of course I was up for it, I'm always up for a kickabout! We eventually left the house a few hours later (we're worse than a group of women going for a night out, I swear), and headed to Golder's Hill Park, which is too far away. It's about a 20 minute walk, all uphill, and you're knackered before you've even got to the grass. Well, you are if you're as unfit as we are!

We played a bit of 60 Seconds (like Headers & Volleys, but with a time limit and slightly different rules. Maybe I'll write them up sometime), and then 4 other guys turned up, asking if we fancied a match. Matches are always a good laugh, and they're better for keeping getting fit than 60 Seconds, so we agreed.

They obviously thought that they were shit-hot, and that they would beat us easily, but we absolutely whipped them. They were all older than us, probably in their mid-20s, but they seemed to play like we did back at school. You know what I mean, cheering every single goal, calling each other by the names on the back of their shirts ("Totti", etc), and religiously keeping score.

Well, I say religiously, but I really mean adding 2 every time they scored, and every so often subtracting 1 from our score. Sad, to be honest. Nevertheless, by the end we won by a score somewhere around 27-20, even if the true gap was much wider than that. Not that I'm fussed, of course!

It was a great workout, running the length of the field every 30 seconds. I was fucked by the end of it though, with a sore back and heavy legs. I was in so much pain as we walked home (why is it so far?!?!), but there seem to have been no lasting repurcussions. I wasn't the only one suffering: we were all moaning about various aches and throbbing as we walked back, and we all collapsed in the living room within 30 seconds of getting into the house.

A quick shower washed away most of the aches and pains (not to mention the mud), but I was still knackered. A trip to the supermarket was definitely not in the offing, because I didn't fancy walking anywhere at all, so I had to throw together some crap dinner whilst the football was on. I'm not a huge fan of pasta with sauce every day, but I guess it will have to do. Come to think of it, that's also what I had last night, even though I'd been to the supermarket and had bought loads of food. I guess I'm never pleased.

No-one was up for any kind of a night out, especially me, so we sat in and watched the football (Holland v Sweden) and a crap film instead. And I truly mean crap. Anaconda ring a bell in anyone's Worst Films Ever list? Dear God was that an awful film. I'm glad I wasn't really watching it, since I was playing Champ (again) on my laptop. I'm getting very good at that game, and my Cardiff City team are performing well above what is expected of them. I have too much spare time on my hands.

After Anaconda, the Glastonbury highlights were on. My housemates were in raptures about McCartney, but I've never been able to see the fascination with his or The Beatles' music. I truly can't stand it, and get bored very quickly by it. Does this make me a heathen, or merely uninformed? Yes, I know that The Beatles created pop music, etc, etc (if it can be shown conclusively that a chain of causation exists between The Beatles and Steps, then The Beatles truly deserve to be confined to the deepest depths of hell for all eternity), but they're just not very good.

All of their songs sound the same, and are so cheery / pop that they become annoying. I know that my musical tastes are very different, but at least with other bands I can understand why they were so popular, or appreciate the quality of their music. With The Beatles, I can do neither. But anyway, rant over.

Basement Jaxx, on the other hand, were great. One of my housemates, I forget who, questioned how the Jaxx could attract such a big crowd when Macca was playing the Pyramid stage at the same time. Pete said something like "it's for all of the dance fans, like Rob", which I couldn't agree with more! Given the choice between Paul McCartney and Basement Jaxx, I'd see the latter every single time. Hell, I'd rather see nothing than McCartney.

The same type of choice would have happened on the Sunday too. It would have been a toss-up between Morrissey followed by Muse, or Orbital's LAST EVER GIG. Erm, no contest. Orbital, without doubt, especially since it was their last gig. The footage they showed of it on Sunday made it look as if it would have been the correct decision. I'm not a huge Orbital fan, but the stuff I've heard by them, I like. Mellow, trancey and dancey does me just fine.

Sunday was a complete and utter washout, especially the daytime bit. Most of my housemates were out during the afternoon, so I managed to watch a DVD that had been sitting on my desk for over a week. I was quite impressed by One Hour Photo, with the pace of the film appealing to me most. I liked the contrast between the overarching slow structure and the the two instances of explosive speed.

The two scenes I'm talking about are Sy's nightmare and the concluding scene in the hotel. Both hit you with a rush of activity that is completely at odds with the melancholy nature of the rest of the film, and they grab your attention immediately.

Robin Williams takes a good role, one which is apparently similar to his other recent role in a thriller, in Insomnia. I need to see that film, as it had good reviews and is directed by the guy who did Memento, which is incidentally a masterpiece of narrative and editing. Note to self, find the Easter Egg on the Memento DVD which allows you to watch the entire film in chronological sequence. If you don't know about this, will sort you out.

In the evening, despite promising to write something here, I ended up playing Champ on the laptop again, as well as watching some more Glastonbury. At one point I was listening to music on headphones from the laptop, since my housemates had Jazz FM on in the living room. If there's one genre of music which I hate more than any other, it's jazz.

I just don't get how anyone can listen to it. Call me unappreciative of the skill involved, or whatever, but it's fucking shit! There was no way I could cope with an hour of that before the Glastonbury highlights show, so I had to grab some headphones from my room and fire up MusicMatch on the laptop. Thank fuck I transferred over all of my mp3s on Saturday!

One of my housemates had got back from his home-home that evening, and had brought back with him a board game called Absolute Balderdash. We were at a loss for things to do, so we decided to play that for a little while.

What a great game! I don't know if you know it, but it's similar to Call My Bluff. One person selects a game card and a category, and reads out one of the following: a word; a person's name; an acronym; a film title; or the first part of a law. All of the other players then have to write what they think either the word means, what the person is 'famous' for, what the acronym stands for, the film's synopsis, or the end of the sentence containing the law.

The card-reader also writes down the real answer (from the card), and collects the answers from everyone else. He then shuffles the answers and reads each one out. Each other player must then say what they think the real answer is.

You score points by guessing the correct answer, and also for other people thinking your 'answer' is the correct one. You move round the board by the number of points you get each round. The winner is the first one to the finish, funnily enough.

Of course, I was the winner. I rule.

It's a great game, and can get very silly. Some of the real answers are even more ridiculous than anything anyone makes up. One that I can remember from last night was a guy who patented a decoy shaped like a cow for hunters to hide in and get close to deer. Genius.

That took us into the early hours of Monday, and that's about it for a wasteful but ultimately enjoyable weekend. I need something to occupy me, or at least to occupy my time. Hopefully the pub should provide that.

Working that is, not drinking. Although...


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