So some friends and I went to Manchester tonight to see Eddie Izzard at the MEN Arena, and it all went off, surprisingly, without a hitch. Travel went smoothly, everything went according to plan. Which was all a bit surprising.
The gig itself was little short of astonishing. Less the performance itself (whilst I like Izzard's stuff I found him rather reliant on repeating tropes to get a laugh out of an exceedingly compliant audience. I think I actually sneered when he got a huge round of applause for some vague anti-foxhunting joke), more the sheer scale of the thing. I've been to rock concerts on a bigger scale, but to see a comedy performance on this scale was just plain strange, one of my friends nearly had an attack of vertigo, so steep were the sides of the arena.
What was fascinating was to hear the sound of laughter on that scale. The slow build of a laugh in thousand upon thousand of people. It was pretty impressive. I could use words like "awe-inspiring" an…
So say you went to a restaurant with the intention of getting away without paying. It's pretty easy to do, waiting on staff won't challenge people leaving, they'll assume they've paid. It's left to the pooor hectic soul on the till to work out who's paid and who hasn't, and the odds are they'll be locked into an argument with a middle aged man who's insisting that as it's his mate (who's already paid)'s birthday they should refund the entire bill and give it to him to pay, and he's not leaving until they do etc etc because he eats here all the time yawn yawn and he's spent a lot of money here tonight (note: 80% of people who speak of "how much money they've spent " querying the bill have bought the cheapest meal possible. It's one of those things, like rain on your wedding day, black flies in your chardonnay or something equally imbecilic). So say you'd weighed up the odds and thought, "yeah, I can do t…
I've started playing squash. I feel like a fucking yuppie. Soon I'll be saying things like "I've definitely been earmarked for the board." "That's thinking outside the box!" and "We need to realise our resources". God help me.
Well it's trundling along at a fair old lick at the moment, of course I've had to abandon anything even remotely resembling a life for the duration (though that will end on the weekend when I shall be lavishing hundreds of pounds on Roe's birthday celebrations huzzah! huzzah! huzzah!. We'll be going for dinner at Liverpool's fabulous 60 Hope Street plus (whisper it) posh hotel shenanigans. There will be champagne waiting in the room when we arrive. There will be champagne waiting in the restaurant...I'm going to town on this one (and will be desolately skint for the rest of the year as a result but oh well).
In other news next week I'll be reading supporting Maggie O'Sullivan, which is quite intimidating, the last time I read in support of anyone with this sort of rep I was about fifteen so smiled upon indulgently. No place to hide this time.
So the ten thousand mark has been reached, and in a moment of literary cleverness I arranged things so that the ten thousandth word would be "landmark", clever old me. Actually, it's playing little games like that with yourself which help you keep going.
But you're not really reading Coastalblog for news of how NaNoWriMo is going, are you? You want rants about how stupid people are. And, just for you...
WHY DO PEOPLE WITH INCREDIBLY SIMPLE NAMES FEEL THE NEED TO SPELL THEM FOR ME WHEN MAKING A BOOKING?
"That's a table for Mr Ball"
I mean it's infuriating, even more irritating than people who book under their first name which assumes that you know who they are or, for that matter, care. In this past week I have had the following names spelt out to me over the phone. Ball. Brown. Smith. Green. JONES for fuck's sake, as if I could possibly mistake that for anything else. Conversely a Mrs Kie…
They were dancing on the tables. Perhaps should explain. Once a month, our lords and masters have decreed that lo, there shall be a Cabaret Night. Wherein a singer in an ill-fitting suit will belt out a load of "soul classics". I actually normally quite enjoy them in a cheesy kind of a way (what? It's not easy being a cultural elitist all the time, y'know), I'll even cheerily sing along as I get swamped at the bar.
However, Cabaret Nights are marked by the middle-aged behaving badly. It's a fiftysomething crowd, generally out in large groups to have their Big Night Out of the month. And all power to 'em I say. The downside is that they drink. Again, all well and good, I am, after all, a bar manager, the more we sell the higher my standing. But they drink. When I was a kid, I always thought grown-ups were sensible. I now know better. Cabaret nights are like watching a room full of your aunties get pissed and try to grope you whilst some fat bloke with a …
So after a jaw-dropping, ball-breakingly hard night at work (they were animals, they wouldn't stop drinking, no really, I have run out of so much stock tonight, I sat down to start the fearsome NaNoWriMo.