Friday, August 24, 2001

Help! I'm drowning in a sea of paperwork! I'll never get out of here!

Thankfully, just a couple of hours to go before the escape to holiday heaven. Dinner with Gorgeous Kelvin tonight (which incidentally, is going very well - meanwhile still no word from Robert after last week's no-show, which just confirms my suspicions that I'm probably better off outta there..) - and then frantic packing tomorrow morning no doubt.

Blogging extremely unlikely for the next week - if I find myself indoors, in front of a computer, at any point during the next week, I will clearly be doing something wrong. However, back next Sunday, with a tan, lots of stories, and maybe (gulp).

Over and out for now...

Yay Dan! You are the new Clive Anderson. Only with slightly less hair.

Thursday, August 23, 2001

It's not every day your mates happen to be on the TV. Well, unless you're good friends with Carol Vorderman. But, just moments from now, my mate Dan, fellow Vauxhall-goer, and all round nice bloke (well, it's not everyone will unashamedly dance with you to the A*Teens in the middle of a crowded club) will be on prime-time BBC1, in Celebrity Sleepover - possibly one of the cheapest, tackiest, and pointlessly voyeuristic products ever to come out of the BBC. It's a proud moment for us all...

I have pesetas. I have travel insurance. I have one of those small tubes of shaving gel that fits in a washbag, and half a bottle of leftover Factor 8.

And despite work currently sucking like a Dyson in a power surge, the great thing is, I absolutely, whole-heartedly, don't care. Because 48 hours from now, I will be among the holidaymaking hordes at Gatwick (47 hours if Greg has his way - obsessively punctual since the missing-the-plane-to-San-Francisco incident, which, I guess may have been my fault...), looking forward to a week of sun, sea, sand and, er, sightseeing, in Sitges.

Hard to believe it's been a year already, but 363 days ago, we first arrived in Sitges, and instantly fell in love with it. It's pretty impossible not to. Great beaches, beautifully unspoilt old town (barely a souvenir shop to be seen), great restaurants, and a laidback and friendly culture you can feel straight away. Oh, and some pretty damn exceptional nightlife ;=))

Some resolutions, though, for this year:

* I will get to the beach every day. Earlier than 4 o'clock.
* I will not go into the Body Body Wear shop every day purely to drool over the guy behind the counter, without actually buying anything.
* We will go to that really nice looking restaurant by the church at a time when it's actually open.
* I will not, under any circumstances, find myself in some random Spaniard's house miles from town, who I don't even fancy once I see them in daylight, but proceed to shag them anyway to be polite.
* I will do something more cultural than simply admiring the lovely architecture on the way to a bar.

And finally, Mr Incredibly-Gorgeous-Man-From-The-Beach-In-Sitges, if you are there this year, you WILL be mine. Oh yes.

Well, at least, this year, I might have the guts to actually talk to you...

Courtesy of - the best use of a URL ever...

Check out

I wonder if it changes on a daily basis?

Ever wondered what happens when a bunch of marshmallow bunnies are subjected to variety of cruel (yet thoroughly amusing) scientific tests? No, thought not. But should you wish to find out, check out the Bunny Survival Tests...

It's things like this that make the web worthwhile.

Wednesday, August 22, 2001

Ok, so I promise is gonna be the only Vauxhall-related post this week, but I really gotta do one of these sometime. A great slide show of Vauxhall Tavern goings-on from Rob in London - granted, I can only put names to about three of these faces, but let's face it, most Sundays, I can barely put names to my three best friends by about 8pm...

Speaking of Sunday, I'm wondering what became of the kid who enlisted my help on the tube there this week. I'm on an empty-ish Victoria line at Highbury and this guy stumbles on, bleeding profusely from a cut in his hand, clutching a scrap of paper and clearly, hopelessly, lost.
"Mate, how dae i get tae here?" he says in the broadest possible Scots accent (which I can't even spell, let alone attempt to imitate) - and waving in front of me the now-bloodstained bit of paper, scrawled on which are the words: 'Stockwell Youth Hostel'. I attempt to suppress a giggle wondering just exactly the Dame Edna Experience would make of that, and explain he's on the right train. In the twenty minutes from there to Vauxhall, I pretty much get the life story: never set foot outside Scotland in his life, and at 21, has just decided to jump on a train to London, with only enough money to last a week, and search for, well I guess what we all come here looking for - a better quality of life.

His main observation so far seems to be that 'there's a lot of fanny down here, aye?' (to which I can only concur in my straightest voice - at this point, it's really not worth the effort to explain...) and that 'all these stations, they're just Monopoly names to me..' Which I guess they are to most people outside London. King's Cross isn't where you repeatedly fail to squeeze on to a late-running Northern Line train - it's the one you want when your smug opponent has just snapped up Marylebone, Liverpool St and Fenchurch St.

I'm reminded of my own first tentative ventures to London, just over five years ago now, not a clue where to live (hell, I even looked at a flat in Hanger Lane) - or what to actually do once I got here. Fortunately things fell into place fairly quickly - a job in a department store (hey, I can do stereotypical with the best of 'em when I want, ok?) and a flatshare with the kind of complete strangers you know will become good friends in no time. And did. Since which time, things have just got better, and better.

Anyway, welcome to London mate, whoever you are - hope you have as much luck as I have so far.

Just don't tell anyone you once stayed in Stockwell...

Tuesday, August 21, 2001

Minimal blogging today I'm afraid - it's Tuesday, therefore not quite feeling like the brightest bulb in the illuminations. Plus, from nowhere, a spot has appeared on my cheek, large enough to have its own gravitational pull. It's very difficult to concentrate when you are being orbited by everyday office objects every 30 seconds...

Monday, August 20, 2001

More potato-related drama - this could become a regular feature at this rate.

Meanwhile, more crop circle weirdness is afoot in Wiltshire. I don't normally give these things that much thought, but this one is pretty damn impressive. What bothers me most, is if aliens ARE creating these, why Wiltshire? Have they come to reclaim Swindon?

So, Friday sucked. However, much improvement for the rest of the weekend.

'You don't need him..' pointed out the newly loved-up Greg on Saturday, in one of those you've-done-the-right-thing conversations which come with the best friend job description. 'It's not as if you're struggling to meet anyone..'

The mobile goes, and it's Gorgeous Steve wanting to go out that night, followed shortly by a message from Famous Mark wanting, well, nothing I can write here ;o) Neither of which I can do having already arranged drinks with Gorgeous Kelvin. Greg has a point.

And a very nice evening too, in a strangely deserted Soho (holidays? torrential rain? end-of-month cash crisis?), and then down to Brixton Hill for Hope, which, as ever, rocked. How I then came to wake up on Sunday morning somewhere in Stratford is another story entirely, but one for the late-night edition I think...

If it's Sunday, it must be Vauxhall, and despite rain stopping grassy knoll play (again), much fun. Falling asleep on the last tube and waking up in Seven-sodding-Sisters - not much fun.

However, hideous hangover aside, Monday is here, and only five days until our impending holiday! Sitges, stock up your vodka and lock up your sons - we're on the way...

'Cos you don't really love me, you just keep me hangin' on..' You, me, and the Supremes, baby. Have decided, despite last week's promising revelations on the Robert front, that I have more in common with Miss Ross and co than I previously thought possible. Plans were made to meet Friday night, so a quick call on Friday to confirm:
'Oh, I'm going to the cinema, could meet you afterwards for a drink though?' (Nice of you to keep it free, then...) 'Call me later and we'll sort out when and where..'

So, 8.00pm, another call:
'Yeah, I'm just outside the cinema now, just come out for half an hour while the trailers are on..'
Except, not outside the cinema at all, but at home, in a chat room trying to pick up, which I can plainly see while we're speaking. And a distinct lack of background noise. Hell, even I can lie better than that. For the hell of it, I go into the same chat room, just so he knows I know. Unsurprisingly, he hurriedly disappears.

Regardless, plans are made to meet at Bar Code at 10.30pm - if nothing else, I'm intrigued to know what the explanation for that one is going to be. Only half of me expected him to actually show up. The wiser half expected a last-minute voicemail with some spurious reason for cancelling. In the event, both halves were wrong - no show, and no message.

Fortunately, a couple of friends were in, so a couple of pints were consumed - not a completely wasted trip. Not that I mentioned that in my rather terse voice message, to which there has, as yet, been no reply at all.

So that, I think, is that. I'm not sure if you can technically ditch someone with whom you were never actually having a relationship, but if you can, consider it done. Hell, who needs multi-millionaire sex gods anyway?

You gotta feel sorry for this guy . Yeah, thanks a lot Mum and Dad...

Saturday, August 18, 2001

News yesterday that the Met police will no longer be able to refer to gay people as 'homosexuals' in official reports, as it 'criminalises' them. Er, hello? Still, the thought was nice, if somewhat misguided.

My favourite bit of this story though, was related on the radio news: "In future, gays and lesbians will be asked how they wish to be referred to in any documentation.."
Ah yes, I can see it now:
"Yes Sarge, I've just brought in three Friends Of Dorothy, Two Rug-Munchers and a Sausage Jockey - what do you want me to do with 'em?"

Now that's progress.

Friday, August 17, 2001

Ouch. Tequila on a school night - never a good idea. Murdering all-time big hair classic (ahem) 'Nothing's Gonna Change My Love For You' by Glenn Medeiros in some basement karaoke bar on Frith Street with all your colleagues - even worse idea.

What possesses ten otherwise educated, adult, professional people to hire out a small, box-like room in which to caterwaul drunkenly at each other down an over-reverberating microphone is still something of a mystery, but yes folks, like jury service, grey hair, and seeing the value in things from the 'Innovations' catalogue in the Sunday paper - no matter how much you run and hide, thinking it will never happen to you, eventually, one day, with a painful inevitability, The Team-Building Karaoke Night will get you.

And this after a thoroughly childish but riotous game of 'dares' in a Soho bar which, fortunately, wasn't one of my regular haunts (since I can now NEVER go there again. Yes, I was the one in the lipstick. But not the one in the gold boob-tube re-enacting 'Riverdance'. It was a dare, ok??!!).

Still, beats go-karting I guess...

When Potatoes Attack! Something from the 'headlines you never thought you'd see' file this morning...

Thursday, August 16, 2001

Some good stuff over at swish cottage this week, and a most impressive new look for blogadoon . Me, I'm still living off the joy of getting these links working. It's early days, grasshopper.

The weekend being what it was, I didn't quite manage my normal religious visit to Southgate Municipal Swimming Pool this Tuesday night - and being closed Wednesday there was no option last night but to seek an alternative venue for my aquatic exertions.

Step forward, the Oasis Sports Centre in Covent Garden.
"The nellie pool..." chuckles Rick on hearing this, in a somewhat 'Tales of the City' manner. "The beach in Sitges is straighter."
Well, ok there may have been the one or two particularly well-built people in particularly hardly-built-at-all swimwear, but on the whole, a mixed and happy crowd of punters enjoying the evening sunshine, whilst attempting not to drown. And I did feel just a bit like Michael Tolliver, for a bit, anyway. No sign of Jon though - guess I will have to take up skating...

Wednesday, August 15, 2001

Whatever it is that gets you breezing through an average Monday (and I think I have an idea, even if I can't quite draw the chemical symbols), certainly gets the first plane out on a Tuesday morning.

Like a cheap ITV schedule-filler, Tuesday, as always, proved to be '...From Hell' and Wednesday, well, a good start marred only by an unexpected showing of 'Honey, The Iron Ate My Shorts', thus leaving me somewhat, well, short, for our impending holiday. Bugger.

Am hoping to be enormously cheered up though, by drinks with Gorgeous Kelvin this evening. Therein lies a problem though: he's a great guy, thoroughly genuine, the most incredible eyes and smile i have EVER seen, perfect boyfriend material, and exactly the kind of person with whom I should probably be selecting a set of matching napkin rings and moving to the country.

But, crucially, not Robert. Damn that pesky Australian!

Meanwhile - check out Richard's great pics from Brighton Pride, and a whole bunch of other events. Spot yourself in the crowd! Or not.

Monday, August 13, 2001

Brighton, we love you. Every Londoner's favourite seaside town (sorry, city, as of last year) certainly knows how to throw a party, and this year's Brighton Pride was, as ever, a damn good time. In the same way that Brighton itself has most of the things you love about London, but in a smaller, more chilled-out and friendly environment, so their Pride festival compares, and is invariably all the better for it.

A manic dash for the train (there had been a Major Wardrobe Crisis, hence delay in leaving), which was suitably packed with the happy homo hordes, and a few bemused daytrippers (you know it's Pride day when the person opposite you is in a leather jockstrap and very little else. Although, like lycra and tight leggings, invariably worn by those who really, just, shouldn't. Full marks for bravery though.)

A brief catch-up with Andi and Nick at the station:
"Phone us when you get to the park, we've got to go and find our lesbians.."
"Greg, did we bring any lesbians?"
"Damn, always forget something - keys, wallet, lesbians!! Perhaps we can find some later.."

To the Amsterdam for much-needed beers, and the first of many sightings of the RVT regulars - where there's an excuse for gratuitous alcohol and drug consumption, it's a safe bet the Vauxhall boys won't be far behind...

Brighton Pride's main one up on Mardi Gras is that you WILL actually run into everyone you know, and verily, so it came to pass, notably Paul and Rob on outrageous form as ever, and none other than my boss and her first ever girlfriend (now THERE's something i wouldn't have believed if you'd told me a year ago..). We approve.

Hours of fun too blurred to recount but a new record set, in that I managed not to completely lose all my friends until ten minutes before the end. Impressive.

So, back to London, apparently rather more the worse for wear than I thought. Overheard from the seat behind me on the train:
"Ooh, he's cute, behind you..."
"Yeah, but he's completely comatose.."
I object! Half-comatose at most. But somehow awake enough to make it down to Fist - to which I generally have to go on my own as Greg finds the idea of all those men in leather just a bit too scary.
"But it's a lot of fun.." I explain. "Just like a big fancy dress party, really. No-one's going to tie you to a table and whip you to within an inch of your life or anything..." Well, not unless you ask them really nicely.

The weekend was rounded off, as ever, in fine Vauxhall style, and proving once again that if it's a small world, the gay world is microscopic, a surprise sighting of an acquaintance from Torquay known only as 'God's Dog' (this is down to Paul, on characteristically catty form, commenting: "Nice body. What a pity he's got a face just slightly older than God's dog..." Ouch.) And I never did find out his real name...

And VERY nice to see Kelvin again - but more of that tomorrow I think, I think a serious dilemma is raising its head...

You really couldn't make this stuff up. Silly season news at its finest. Favourite quote on the whole matter though, goes to Christine Hamilton in today's Metro - "If we were going to go to a sex party we'd go to one in Kensington or Chelsea, we wouldn't go to one in Essex." Quite right too. I mean, there are reputations to think of.

Friday, August 10, 2001

Aha! Fox's Party Rings. Glad we cleared that one up then.

Thursday, August 09, 2001

We rather like this week.

Tuesday: to Robert's after work. Robert in 30 words or less: gorgeous Aussie hunk, funny, intelligent, ridiculously sexy, damn perfect, ideal boyfriend, likes me a lot, but - and there has to be a catch of course - doesn't want a relationship right now (ok, 31 words...). Yes, that old favourite. Although saying that, do I? That's a whole other thesis.

But progress has been made, of sorts. Ok it's been 18 months but finally I have confirmation that if he WERE to be in the market for a boyfriend, squeeze, partner, other 'arf, significant other (why, after millions of years of the evolution of language is there still no decent word? See also 'snog'.), I would be top of the list. "List?!" I query, half-jokingly, but apparently there is no list, nor even any competition. Wow. I feel somewhat hypocritical knowing my list resembles the till receipt from Tesco's for a particularly gluttonous family. Although Robert is, and always has been/will be, the most important item in the trolley.

What's more, the whole relationship thing is not, apparently, completely out of the question at some time. Additional wow. Not that I'm holding my breath, you understand, but at least right now, smiling a lot.

Wednesday meanwhile, and elsewhere on that receipt, dinner with Gorgeous Kelvin is arranged for what could be a very nice Friday night. And numerous messages from a certain rather well-known porn star and writer who I first met a few weeks ago (and what a night THAT was...) and, for some unfathomable reason, hasn't yet realised how far out of my league he is. Either that, or the beer goggles are still on. Blimey.

Yes, we rather like this week.

Wednesday, August 08, 2001

So that's where the Muppets get all that energy...

Tuesday, August 07, 2001

Today, I am manifestly at work in the high-octane world of recruitment advertising . My stomach, however, thinks it's either at college, or a children's tea party.

This morning it was crisp sandwiches (made with bread rolls), lunchtime it was a Pot Noodle (Barbecue flavour - probably the least offensive), and now we're eating 'Chocahoops!' - ring shaped chocolate biscuits which taste really like those ones you used to get at your eighth birthday party, with the yellow or pink icing in a criss-cross pattern, but which aren't Ice Gems.

What WERE they?
Nope. It doesn't matter how I tell it, or what kind of spin I put on it. I'm gonna come out of today's entry looking like some kind of cheap slut. Which, frankly, is a little ironic (and in the actual sense, not the Alanis Morrisette sense), since I have in fact been suffering two weeks of enforced celibacy, due to aforementioned, well, see last Wednesday.

Still, safe in the knowledge that quite literally no-one is going to be reading this right now, here goes..

So Friday night was a quiet one, having had to stop myself from going out with Steve. The 'New Woman' ad on TV where a girl insists on staying in despite her friends' best efforts "Besides.." she sniffs, "I'm heating up a shepherds pie..." played repeatedly and struck far too close to home...

Still, a fantastic Fridge night on Saturday, by general consensus one of the best for a long time. In attendance (deep breath): Greg, Nathan, Rick, Phil, James, Big Jase, Baby Jase, Gorgeous Kelvin, Gavin, John, Andy n Alex, Incredibly Gorgeous John, Incredibly Gorgeous Brian, Paul (not in comedy trousers for once), Toby (ah, that's where the comedy trousers got to), Chris, Rich, and doubtless many, many more (..all on one great compilation!! Not available in stores!). Knowing it was just going to be my and my bed at the end of the night kinda put a different spin on things (next time, Adam....) which, in some strange way, I think I rather liked. Much drunkenness and debauchery nonetheless...

Then of course to Vauxhall on Sunday afternoon, Dame Edna on truly acidic form (or maybe just acid?). Somehow every week's the funniest ever, but really, this week was. Well, along with last week. It's not everyone can get a whole club full of butch (ahem) men singing 'you make me feel like a natural woman' at the tops of their voices...More drunkenness, more debauchery (seem to have parted company with several of my business cards, so who knows where my phone number is currently residing?) - and a very nice tube ride home, or at least to Euston, with Gorgeous Kelvin.

And so to this week. Fully recovered (at last!), so tonight, to Robert's, tomorrow night, to Mark's, and hopefully Thursday night, dinner with Kelvin. I think this is called making up for lost time...

Ah. It appears to be Tuesday. I may have to re-think this whole 'daily' concept.

Meanwhile, pop star vegetables anyone? Love's got a hold on my artichoke...

Friday, August 03, 2001

Steve Coogan's 'You're a tiger! Grrrr...' suddenly takes on a whole new meaning. I mean, cats are great, but.....

Meanwhile, the weekend approacheth, and a Fridge weekend at that. Friends old and new will be met, inappropriate quantities of alcohol will be consumed, and it will all probably be a very hazy memory come Monday morning. My ambition is purely to remember being there at all (thus going one up on the Mardi Gras night), and to avoid some farcical sitcom situation developing from the high likelihood that both Gorgeous Kelvin and Gorgeous Steve (and who knows who else?) will be there at the same time. This could all get very out of hand...

Thursday, August 02, 2001

The links work! Ha!

The tragedy is this small achievement could well prove to be the highlight of today....

To the Yard last night for long-overdue drinks with Barry. So overdue in fact, that he and his 'new' boyfriend Martin were celebrating their first anniversary. Had they even met last time we went out?! Write 100 lines: 'I must make more effort to keep in touch with my old friends'..A nice night though.

However I wasn't quite on form owing to the previous three hours having been spent at the clinic, over what turned out to be nothing more than a shaving rash with ideas above its station. Good news really. Nevertheless the usual questions had to be asked to eliminate all other suspects:
'And how many sexual partners have you had in the last three months?'
'Er...,let me think....,eight?' I lied, blatantly.
Like I know. Like who (apart from a handful of straight people who could probably do the last three years. AND name them.) knows? Let's face it, the holiday to San Francisco alone probably stomps all over 'eight'.

Back to the Yard, and nice to see the laws of nature are still fully functioning. Specifically, the law in operation last night was the one which states that, when you've had a really long day, have come straight from work, are in your crappiest clothes, looking like death, several pints the worse for wear, and having a Really Bad Hair Day - you WILL run straight into someone you really fancy. And lo, there appeared Gorgeous Kelvin, looking, well, gorgeous of course. Grrr. Mercifully, a brief meeting - perhaps we'll laugh about it one day when we're choosing curtains...

Meanwhile - just how do you get these links to work?

Wednesday, August 01, 2001

Day 2 in blogworld and it feels mighty fine to be here. It occurs a bit of background might be in order, but you try describing yourself without it sounding like a personal ad - 'hmm, yes, 27 years old, five-foot-nine, GSOH, own car and teeth, ability to fashion amusing objects from everyday household items...' Perhaps not. I'm sure more than enough will be revealed in due course.

A quick word of thanks though i think, to a few folks who've unwittingly enabled me to stumble here. It was all down to a fuzzy-headed Monday morning search, thanks to a bit of word-of-mouth from my long-suffering flatmate (and partner in many a crime) Greg, for a web presence of my favourite watering-hole, spiritual home, and all-round legend that is the Royal Vauxhall Tavern. I can't put it into words better than David's excellent A-Z right here but suffice to say it's an experience, and an institution. And lord knows most of us who go ought to be in one of those.

From there to David's blog, and to Ian's and onwards to many more. Besides being frequently entertaining, what struck me was the downright weirdness of reading about these lives that, in a lot of ways, almost mirror my own. Pretty damn closely sometimes. Hey, I can relate, man. You get the picture.

So for reasons aforementioned, here's mine.

Now let's go see if those links work.