Monday, April 30

What's wrong with this picture?

I was on my way to an acupuncture appointment the other day, and realized I needed to pee.

And as we all know, there's nothing worse than holding in your bladder as a smelly French gypsy sticks pins into your arm.

This is one of the restrooms in the facility where I work.

Gents. Imagine the view as you STAND there taking a leak. Full on reflection of you with cock in hand peeing into the bowl. Odd.

But not as odd as a few years back, I had a pee in the bathroom of a newly hitched couple who had placed a photo of the two of them, on their wedding day, on the cistern, in full eye-line of my arc of piss.

Friday, April 27

A Special Night

Yesterday was our wedding anniversary, and like most couples celebrating their lifelong commitment to each other we planned a special evening.

After good food at a nice restaurant, and with a couple of cocktails to relieve the stress of a work day we headed back home and within minutes we were watching  the NFL draft.

Because on the day you celebrate your own marriage, who doesn't want to see a 20 year old becoming a millionaire as he kisses his 5 year old daughter?

Sunday, April 22

Do I have to pay extra for this?

I have crappy hair and I don't like talking to strangers, so getting my haircut is a month to month misery.

I went to my usual local cheapo place this afternoon, and God knows what they do to their stylists but the turnover of staff is such that I never see the same haircutter twice.

Until today. When Cathy recognized me. Probably because 4 weeks ago she talked me into buying some shampoo with magical properties of body and volume.

They take their customers in the order they enter, and as chance would have it, I bagged Cathy again. "Same cut as last time?", she asked. In the milliseconds between her question and my affirmative nod, my brain registered the pithy reply of "Yes, I'd like the shitty lifeless $5 cut that I always get regardless of the quality of your scissorship".

She snipped away and had the good grace to keep the conversation down to hair length and recalling that I didn't want the back of my hair 'squared off'.

Once done she ushered me over to the wash basin (I know, I always presumed you washed then cut, but not in this place). During the eternity it took to get the water to the correct temp, I looked upwards alternating between her nylon blouse sleeves and armpits, and the off-white ceiling tiles.

A quick shampoo later I prepared to get up only to remember that everyone else in the world uses conditioner. I heard the 2 squirts into her hands, and then realized I was actually getting a head massage.

Nice as it was, all I could think of was a haircut I had in Nerja in Southern Spain many years ago.

While my stylist cut my hair with a cigarette in the same hand as her scissors, the old guy next to me was getting a wash from the 'breaking out of her blouse' teenage sex-bomb hair-washer.

As she did her stuff the old guy made groaning noises.

Think Penelope Cruz slapping the Herbal Essence on the guy from Human Centipede.

Wednesday, April 18

A Safe Working Environment

I reckon I've hired 25 people in the past year. And it appears that the next generation have mastered the art of the professional looking resumé and interview technique.

The women all look the same with shoulder length straight hair, shiny white teeth and a business suit that will be retired once they start working here.

The guys wear their funeral and wedding suit, usually with a shirt that's a neck size smaller than it should be. To coin a phrase from my blogging mate Boff, the guy looks like 10 lb of shit in a 9 lb bag.

Last month the guy nearest the door (we don't have a receptionist) announced that "The girl from yesterday is back for a 2nd interview", it was a different girl.

Per position, I interview 5 or 6 people, and I long to hear someone say something vaguely controversial, or opinionated, or even interesting.

Instead they ask pointed yet ultimately futile questions, while I spin off on tangents, tired of my own voice and re-telling of the company history.

In the past someone once wrote in their cover letter, "I don't know if I can do the job, because you didn't write a good description, but what the hell I'm up for anything" - he bagged an interview.

Years ago, an ex-colleague and a good bloke when asked why he wanted to re-locate said "My bird (girlfriend) just left me and I've nothing better to do." - he re-located.

And back in my London days, someone said "I can see you're the monkey, but I'd like to meet the organ grinder". She got the job.

We just hired an HR manager for the first time. She's great and I think the net result will be fewer boring resumés for me to pick through. But I find myself whispering expletives, or quietly explaining the derivation of "He gets on my tits", so as not to get 'called in' for inappropriate behavior.

My business partner threw me a curve ball today. We're looking for a Project Manager in Shanghai, and through Linked In we can see a photograph of the candidate.

"They all look the same", she said. And just as I was about to roll my eyes in liberal aghast, she revealed that the candidate was originally from the north of England.

It's still racist, but to be fair she has 5 north of England colleagues and we all maintain a somewhat pasty, middle-aged 'northern' look.

Thursday, April 12

When do the jets fly past?

I never find Americans backward in coming forward.

And still get amused at how they have to sing their National Anthem at every sporting event, and unfailingly cheer at the penultimate line while some American Idol cast off moronically scats an a cappella ad lib.

I once counted how many flags are on display during my drive into work and stopped when I reached a 100.

This is one of those every day amusements that only I seem to find amusing.

America's original brand of brain destroying fake sugar.

They should start printing the year on the packet. "Because it was like, totally like, 40 years ago, man. Dude that's like an antique."

Just as a point of non-interest. I prefer the blue packets.

Monday, April 9


Anne's parents visited for Easter, and we took this opportunity to show them how I video chat with my mum and dad each week.

Here in all it's glory are my folks talking to Anne's folks, with Anne translating each way.

Thursday, April 5

Healing Update

Had my eye test the other day. I never realized how close the eye-guy has to get to you when he's swiveling all of his lens choices.

My eye-guy wore chinos, but despite that, he had a good sense of humor.

When he asked which line of letters I could read I said it would have been easier had they used a better typeface. This lead to a pointless monologue from me on the golden heyday of sans serif typography in Europe from the 50s to early 70s.

Chino guy admitted he'd never had that conversation before. I think that was 'code' for "Shut up you boring myopic English fuck".

Acupuncture was an improvement, in that I got to keep my jeans on. Needles all over my arms and neck, but I think I fell asleep, so that's relaxing.

Even better was the Reiki action on Thursday. I had to concentrate on my breathing, which isn't as easy as it sounds. Once again I nodded off at least 5 times. Afterwards Olga told me to start drawing, walk in nature with no headphones and drink less coffee. She wants to see me again in 2 weeks.

Not sure if I should bring my drawings.

Tuesday, April 3

Let the alternative healing begin

I've signed up for Acupuncture and Reiki this week.

Last time I had acupuncture I ended up in my underwear with 3 needles in-between my knuckles, while the guy with the ponytail made "um" noises trying to channel my chi.

This time I've got a Frenchman who looks like a gypsy. Sort of David Essex with a hint of superiority.

Meanwhile I just read an interesting article about inappropriate touching lawsuits among the Reiki community.

My therapist is Olga from Minsk. I sense she spiritually "takes no shit". She does Reiki with contact or without. I'm going 'all in' and pushing for a lawsuit.

Throw in an eye test tonight and my week is full of potential.

Monday, April 2

Richard Update

I still don't have my blue shoes, but my alter-ego "Richard Taylor of Las Vegas", has once again been in touch with me to "set a fire under some asses".

I'll ignore that he called me Rich, but signed his name as Richard ... yes, being called Rich is annoying isn't it?

But the Las Vegas Richard is the manager of the bachelorette party favorite "Pete's Dueling Piano Bar".

Is it weird to try to meet up with my namesake next time I'm in Vegas?

I spoke with the wonderfully named Jordan Hoyle Chisholm today who assured me that my blue shoes will be with me soon. What was I thinking ordering blue shoes?

Sunday, April 1

Just like the Antarctic

Robert Scott famously wrote that Oates' last words were "I am just going outside and may be some time".

In an eerily similar vain (except that I'm inside), I am about to fit a new shower head in Anne's bathroom.

The box says that I just need a wrench, but I also know how much the box lies.

I have until Thursday to get this right. Anne's parents are visiting and her mom insists on that massage-style summer mist feeling when she's showering.

Now, what does a wrench look like?