Here we are, then. The end of June. I moved out of my home, the penthouse apartment above the exploding mattress shop, on 24 March, meaning I’ve now been Of No Fixed Abode for over three months.
Packing is tricky when you don’t know how long you’re packing for. Thankfully, some of the decisions I took when I moved out were good ones. I didn’t bring my coat, for example. It would have used up space and it wasn’t cold for long after I left. I brought what felt like too many books, but in hindsight was enough to keep me going even now.
Other things I could have done with more of, but there wasn’t much room. The same three work shirts in rotation are feeling a bit dull now. The same ten pairs of socks are getting pretty worn. I wish I’d packed at least one more pair of jeans.
Here’s the decision I regret the most, though. When I picked up some treasured sentimental objects, I chose a photograph of my sisters and my Pouring Beans 2020 Calendar. Then I looked at the envelope containing the calendar pages for July to December and I thought… no, surely not. I’ll be back before July. July is forever away.
Now my calendar is running out, and while you will simply turn the page tomorrow morning, I will have nothing. Nothing but regret, and a need to look at my phone to see what day it is.
These are strange times, I know, and presumably the creative people who come up with ideas for adverts are a bit stuck for inspiration. (Not that they were brilliant at it before.) That might be why they’ve all come up with the same four words to use in their adverts.
Now, more than ever, companies are telling us that now, more than ever, is the time to buy their stuff, whatever it is. Once you notice it you can’t ignore it any more. It’s everywhere.
Here are just some of the now-more-than-everers:
Tesco, who tell us that now, more than ever, every little helps.
Nespresso, because now, more than ever, their coffee machine pods are technically recyclable (but not in your council recycling).
Barclays, where now, more than ever, their “digital eagles” will show you how to use the Internet.
Every single charity with a fundraising campaign right now.
Country Walking Magazine, who are running very strange adverts to tell us that now, more than ever, is the time to buy a magazine about something that has literally been illegal for the last two months.
There is no solution to this ongoing crisis. The only coping mechanism I’ve found so far is to repeat the words “now, more than ever” back at the TV whenever one of these adverts comes on.
That doesn’t help, obviously. It’s just something to do. But maybe that’s enough – because now, more than ever, we need a way to cope with this unimaginative catchphrase.
In the second installment of Crazy Religos, I’ve decided to bring you the wonderfully insightful pamphlet, “Who Really Rules the World?” from the Jehovah’s Witnesses. If you didn’t think they were a bit odd for spending time going and bothering folks on their doorstep to talk about their imaginary friends then maybe you’ll be fine with the conculsions in here, but for the rest of us…
You know what? It’s been far too long since I’ve annoyed everyone with my huge stack of tat and as it is overdue, and I still have a quota to make up, let’s take a look at what I have been throwing my money away on. Take a gander at this juicy goosey:
In the top left-hand corner we have the original gameboy classic ‘The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening’. I didn’t buy purchase this recently, this is merely to amplify the ridiculousness of it all. I bought this in 1994/5, I opened it, played it and loved it like one man can love some plastic on a tiny grey and green screen.
The one next to it with the nifty black cover is the deluxe edition released some years later. I acquired one of these because I needed it to help finish my collection. It’s pretty much the same game but with some extra bits thrown in and parts of it in (very limited) colour. I haven’t played this one yet. I should also mention that I have a digital copy of the game downloaded to one of my 3DS consoles, which I have played through.
In the same month I bought the deluxe edition I also bought the two below it, which are the remastered, re-imagined, re-done whatever you will for the Nintendo Switch. It is exactly the same game albeit with fancy graphics and souped up music. I finished it in under five hours because I have the game committed to memory. So you can really feel the punch I bought the standard edition and the limited edition version, the latter of which I haven’t opened yet and probably won’t do. You know, because that’s me through and through. I bought them on the date they were released at full price.
So now I own (including the digital one) five copies of the same game, one of which may stay in its house forever and one which I won’t bother using because I have it downloaded ready to play whenever I want.
Oh and look, I got a free cleaning cloth for buying the limited edition boxed copy. That was well worth the money. I’m also keeping the cleaning cloth sealed.
It’s been a while since we last spoke. How are you? What have you been up to? Did you manage to achieve all your hopes and dreams or are you still pissing your life up the wall like the rest of us? Well, whatever it is you are doing to pass the time I hope it is as sweet as a kitten’s smile.
Anyway, the real reason I wanted to get in touch was this:
So what do you think you’re playing at, hmmm? You put your cup on the ground and walked away. There were several bins within the vicinity, well within a five minute walk. In fact whichever direction you chose you would have been close to somewhere you could have disposed of it in the correct way. Hell, you could have left it at my office and I would have sorted it out. By leaving it on the street like an arse you have effectively made yourself an arse forever.
The next time I have spaghetti hoops I will be sure to leave the tin in your garden. When I choose to have a bottle of Jack Daniels to myself I will be throwing it through your living room window. You may think this is too much a punishment for one such tit as yourself however I don’t think it is. I would sooner push you out of a plane thirty thousand feet in the air rather than let people like you walk the same streets as me.
It’s 6.33 in the morning and I am in an airport. This seems to be a good time for me to tell you some things about airports that I don’t like.
I don’t like having to take my belt off when I go through security because the shorts I’m wearing for this flight are a bit loose and at risk of falling down while I walk through the scanner.
I don’t like exiting security and passing directly through a massive duty free shop before I can do anything else, assaulted from all sides by strong smells of perfume that my nose can’t deal with at this time of day.
I don’t like having to be here two hours before my flight, only to find that having cleared security they won’t even announce the gate number for another hour and a half.
I don’t like spending that hour and a half in a departure lounge that is basically a windowless shopping mall, all brightly lit stores and flashing screens. I don’t like that my entertainment options are a choice between looking around designer boutiques I’d never normally go in, or sitting in an uncomfortable chair in ranks of seats surrounded by screaming children and looking at the same designer boutiques because I’m literally surrounded by them.
I don’t like that all the food on offer is served by places that are chain restaurants that serve sushi or craft beers or sourdough pizza, and that here they also have to serve breakfast, and none of them know how to do that.
In summary, the basic point is that I don’t like this. But in another few hours I’ll be on holiday and too far away for you to hear me complaining, so it’s OK.