BOO!

Did you miss me? It's been six months since my last daylog...this is my fourth, and what a time it's been! If you want to know about my life so far, check out my birthday, me at six months, and me turning one. Actually, Mom just read me my last daylog, and I can't believe how much I've changed since then!

The biggest thing is that I can walk. Indeed, I rarely crawl at all, even when I'm going under tables. I'd rather bump my head (and I do). I can feed myself with a spoon or fork, though I still prefer fingers. And I'm just starting to get into this talking thing.

Talking...I had no idea all the noises everyone around me actually MEANT things! I've been making noises for months now, trying to get in on the game. Mom and Dad would always repeat what I was saying, but then go back to their own mouth noises. But now I'm beginning to understand that it's a bigger game than I ever dreamed of!

I can ask for my favourite foods, like nana and peas. I can ask for more of something, particularly dooce. I even comment when it's coh-cah. I call every big animal a doddie, I ask for my baa by name, and I go vroom-vroom when I drive a car (toy or real). I can ask to get up or down from things, talk to Mama and Dada, and say uh-oh when things fall down. I'm adept at saying "Bye", and giving a little wave as I do so. I'd say I have about 20 or 30 words...if I could count.

I still give great hugs (and say "Awwww" and pat your back as I do so). I like to dance in circles to music from my toy mobile phone, and play peekaboo either with my hands or a blanket over my head. This week, I'm running footraces, saying "deddy...GO" and running across the room. When I get tired from all this activity, I like to rest and watch the Teletubbies and Bobbah

Speaking of which, I hear the windmill going now. It's been fun, but I have to go. BIG HUG! (Awwww).

Bye! (waves)

Tonight:

I called my boss tonight. He was downstairs, in the lobby, and I was upstairs, next to one of the projectors in the projection booth.

"Hello?" he said.

"Hi, Boss," I said into the phone, looking through one of the viewports at the audience within the auditorium. "I just wanted to tell you that I can't come into work today."

"Huh?" He jerkily replied. "But you're already at work!"

"I know," I answered. "But, you see, there's these voices. They keep telling me things. Strange things."

"...... uhm... what kinds of things?" he asked hesitantly, not sure if he really wanted the answer to that question.

"Well... they tell me that I should go home. And sharpen the knives. I keep telling them that I sharpened the knives this morning, but they're pretty insistent. Especially Bruce. He's a bully."

There was a long pause and then he said, "You haven't had a cigarette today, have you?"

"No," I answered blandly. I thought about mentioning lack of pay, crazy hours and whatnot, but decided against it. We'd already talked about how un-perky this job is and how I must be crazy to be working here, still, after nine months.

"Oh, God," he breathed. "We're doomed." He sounded almost helpless.

"No you're not, Boss." I said cheerily. "Just don't let me downstairs tonight. I might meet some kids. Kids might anger me. They wouldn't like me when I'm angry." It sounded very Bill-Bixby-ish, I thought.

"So what's the worst that could happen if some kids annoy you tonight?"

"Ever seen a slaughter house?" I asked. "Like the ones where they send the cows at meat-packing plants?" There was silence, very thoughtful silence. "Well, it's kinda like that, only messier." More thoughtful silence. I think he was trying to hedge his bets. "That can be avoided, though," I informed him.

"How?" he gulped into his cell phone.

"Send someone up here with a cigarette. Now. I don't care what kind, but I need a smoke soon or the blood will flow out of this theater like a river. Oh, and, Boss?"

"Yeah?"

"It's not incest if it's an in-law." I like giving friendly advice, even to those who don't necessarily need it.

I never did get that smoke. I wonder if those kids I bumped into on my lunch break will ever be missed?


Oh, BTW, The Transporter rocks. And don't let the critics fool you- Red Dragon is the kittens mittens.

Though I am still very much a stranger in London, I feel at home on its streets in a way that I did not in Cape Town. This is because the paranoia levels are so much lower. there is so much less private space, and the public space is so much more user-friendly.

This reminds my of the surveillance cameras. I don’t know if this contributes to the comfort zone, but it’s there. Between home and work I am probably imaged 10-20 times. One day I looked up at a streetlight mast and realised that it wasn’t a streetlight, but a camera-nest of about six of them, covering a busy intersection.

Though I breath easier in London, I don’t breath easier: My lungs are often closed up, and I get lots of minor sniffles

A friend back in Cape Town thinks that I am depressed. Reviewing Are you depressed or just full of angst?, I’m not sure. There is certain desperation, angst that has receded from my mind lately, and that makes it worthwhile. I miss Cape Town a bit, and that will no doubt get worse in the coming months, when it's cold and dark here.

There are times a few years ago when I was depressed, when I felt as empty as a bucket with a hole in it. This is not like that.

When I say stuff like ‘squashed in the Tube is all the human contact I need'. I’m aware that this is not the best state of affairs. I just don’t feel like working hard to change things right now. I know what I want and I know what I’m doing. Having that is worth a struggle.

Has London lived up to my (admitedly low) expectations? In many ways it has exceeded them. Work is not as exciting as I would like. But I like the place more than I thought I would. Failure to thrive here would be better than being there, as at least an effort would have been made to change. The things I don’t like can mostly be summed up as 'IT Downturn' and that is beyond my control and not local to the UK.

The world is so much smaller than it was in 1992, when I last tried to live here. I have SA news websites and email whenever I open a web browser.

I went out with a girl a few years ago, who told me that her previous long-term boyfriend used to get drunk and violent with her. I asked why she put up with it. She said “my father is like that – I thought that’s just how it is’. When I calmed and stopped being just appalled down I realized that childhood is the ultimate normative experience.

A britnoder said to me “must have been weird growing up in South Africa.” No, childhood is by definition normal, even when it’s not. What’s weird is when you realise that the oddness that you see in a foreign place the normal situation, and what you are familiar with is the aberration.

I think of another girl with whom I have occasional email contact. I think her father also has Alcohol problems. The children don’t often admit that. Ok, maybe some cultures do. I’m beginning to realise the gulf between the English English and their offshoot – that particularly stiff upper lip standard-bearing proprietary of the would-be upper class colonial petit bourgeoisie that characterises the English speaking Capetonians.

To get back to this woman, an ex of hers thinks she’s now in an ‘abusive relationship’. Sour grapes? Maybe. But sometimes the children are drawn to these relationships, as it is familiar. And as that same sour-graped ex remarked, they can subconsciously feel something missing, wrong, when they don’t get abuse. Somebody, tell me if I’m wrong here?

By now I’m tired of my recent Pixies phase, and am listening mostly to The Flaming Lips. The Soft Bulletin is good, though growing on me more slowly than Yoshimi battles the Pink Robots, but it may have as much staying power. I especially like these lyrics: Driving home, the sky accelerates and the clouds all form a geometric shape. I have been there.

Also listening to erm, Mechanical Animals for some nice Angst and derealization. I’ll try get some Sigur Ros from amazon next month, when my debit card will have arrived.

My brother says he’s depressed. My abandonment, or just his own chaos and detritus?

I have found a winning strategy for warcraft III: set the difficulty to 'easy'. It's much more fun, but takes away the illusion that I coulda been a contender.

I read today that the Nirvana "Best of" compilation featuring the last unreleased track (which Courtney Love once referred to as "a rock and roll holy grail"), "You Know You're Right" is due out at the end of the month.

Having read its predictable track-listing and looked at the rather uninspired art ("Nirvana" in silver writing on a black background), I can only say that this is nothing more than a cheap money-making stunt to squeeze a few more bucks out of Kurt Kobain's legacy. The kids who are too young to have been around the first time will likely pick it up to get all the singles, and the completist geeks like myself who want the unreleased song will buy it despite ourselves.

This makes me wish Napster was still around, or that Limewire worked with my router (anyone out there who's gotten it to work with a Linksys router please message me --I would be eternally grateful). I don't want to be strongarmed into buying a collection of songs I already own because of the one song I don't have.

I much rather prefer the original box set idea that would have contained a number of odds and ends besides the singles. As I don't own all of Nirvana's b-sides, that wouldn't have been such a bad deal. At the very least it would have come with a nifty book and extensive liner notes. I'd be surprised if the Courtney Love/Jim Barber-sponsored package has anything in the way of any interesting information, even information I already know.

So does this mean that Dave Grohl and Christ Noveselic lost the war over Nirvana's back catalog? It sure looks like it.

Arguably my best birthday ever:
I spent it asleep until 5:00 PM, when suddenly, my relatives decided to deliver their gifts, in the form of checks totalling $148
then, to the video store to rent some pr0n^H^H^H^Hanime, and the ordering of pizza upon return home.

Followed, the watching of rented anime, eating of ordered pizza, and return to heavy slumber at the end of the longest 6 hour day I've ever experienced.

edit: this is my first day writeup, please don't kill me if I got the format a bit wrong.

I think I did drugs today.

No silly, not on purpose.

Since the weather is so moist in Southwestern Pennsylvania lately, my yard has been absolutely overflowing with mushrooms of all kinds. I was out checking on my newly planted trees, when I saw a particularly nice looking mushroom. It wasn't rotten, not too browned, and from what I could tell, didn't have any insects in it. My stepdad mentioned in passing that a mushroom is good to eat if is does have insects in it, as the poision in non-edible mushrooms keeps the bugs away. But, anyway, I bent down and picked it, regardless of what I have heard about bad mushrooms. I took a bite.

Just a little bite!

It took a bit (not too long, just a bit!) and I saw some strange colors, and my head felt a bit different than it usually does. I was still in control of my motor skills, but everything felt a bit lighter than usual. The effect did not last long, though, as I was back to my normal self after only a few minutes. Maybe next time I will eat the whole mushroom - but, I doubt I will actually do something like that again.

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