Saturday, March 13, 2004

March, you say? 2004? Already? Yikes.

Quite understandably, you probably imagined I’d given up this particular ghost for good. As did I. Not intentionally, you understand, but it just, well, sorta happened.

For which I most humbly apologise – to those who’ve had to adjust their links page accordingly, and those who’ve been misguided kind enough to encourage me to continue (you fools).

So, here we are then. ‘Back’, by ‘popular’ ‘demand’! [inverted comma key explodes through over-use of sardonic tone...]

And what’s been happening, you may well wonder (should you have far too much time on your hands)?

A year, in months:

APRIL 2003

Where I left you, dearest reader/s, manfully manning the Quietest Reception Desk In The World. Manfully.

MAY 2003

Free of the switchboard! And back on the dole. Hmm. Well, maybe we’ll try the bar thing again. At least it’d get me out of the house. And considering I’ve nearly resorted to watching Des and Mel on at least three occasions, this can only be a good thing. Which is how, thanks to the lovely Phill and the lovely Neil, I find myself behind the bar at Comptons. And absolutely loving it. The difference between sleepy local pub and bustling Soho institution, well, makes all the difference. This is fun.

JUNE 2003

In which, as the mighty That once sang, everything changes but you. I’m loving the bar thing, and the tips have certainly improved, mainly thanks to the tourists. If you’re a Londoner you’ll doubtless have cursed tourists many a time, standing on the left of the escalators as they do, ambling down Oxford Street four abreast with their ludicrously-sized backpacks, perfecting the time-honoured art of Stopping For No Apparent Reason, right in front of you. But get behind a bar and suddenly your whole view changes. You especially love Americans.

But sadly, no amount of Americans are going to change the fact that this ain’t gonna pay the rent, kid. Or fund that holiday. Or keep you in the debauchery lifestyle to which you’ve become accustomed.

Then, out of nowhere, a phone call from a company I applied to way back last October. They’ve got a position I might be interested in. And I am. It’s not a million miles from my previous job, but you never know, it might be more interesting. It means selling my soul to office life again, but working most evenings and weekends as I am, I’m starting to see the appeal of having them free again.

And lord knows I need the money – life for the past four months has been, not depressing, not really what you’d call miserable, but decidedly ‘on hold’. You find yourself uttering the words ‘I can’t until I’ve got a job’ and ‘When I’ve got a job I’ll…’ and ‘I can’t afford to at the moment but hopefully once I’m working…’ to the point where if you hear them one more time you’re liable to start battering small children in the streets.

So the first interview goes well, and the second, and by the end of the month I can finally get those loathsome phrases out of my vocabulary. Things bode well when, on my first morning, my manager arrives late and barely able to function through her colossal Sunday-night-induced hangover. We’re going to get on.

Speaking of work, it calls. More after this short intermission.

Thursday, March 11, 2004

…creeeaak! Shh. Only me. Just thought I’d pop my head round the door and have a look at the old place. Lotsa cobwebs. Dusty as hell. Assuming hell gets dusty, that is. You’d imagine ol’ Beelzebub would have a woman who pops round once a week to give it a once-over. And maybe do a spot of washing. Not much point being the Prince of Darkness if you’ve got to do your own smalls.

But yeah, dusty. Lots of old junk I’d forgotten about. It’s kinda nice being up here though. And not that many cobwebs. Maybe…just maybe…well, it’s a thought. And it was fun. Would it take that much to spruce it up again? Get a few new things, make it look lived-in? It’s a temptation. And I never was any good at resisting that.

Dammit, Janet! Get your marigolds on and pass me that duster. We’re going in…