October 21st, 2002

end of a decade

bank job just a false alarm/choosing my religion

I thought I was delayed on the way to work this morning by a bank robbery. However:

"Part of Oxford city centre was sealed off by the police on Monday due to an incident at a bank. The alarm was raised early in the morning. Officers with dogs were called out and searched the area around the Lloyds bank. St Aldates, the High Street and part of Cornmarket was sealed off.

Nothing was found by the police."

Not that surprising. Who robs banks any more? Still, at least there was something moderately interesting to wwatch from the Carfax webcam for a change.

Got bored of stupid quizzes and went looking for enlightenment instead, but could only find this:

According to the SelectSmart.com Belief System Selector, my #1 belief match is Unitarian Universalism. </br> What do you believe?</b></a> Visit SelectSmart.com/RELIGION

[noxious advert alert]

With, unsurprisingly, Liberal Quaker and Neo-Pagan were sat in the no.s 2 & 3 spots. Though unnervingly I scored as high as 71% for Jainism, and 48% for Scientology! Differences not as great as you might think, I suppose ...
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end of a decade

pret-a-manger's secret sauce destroyed my vim

Heavy mass this weekend, almost planetary on scale, smaller? maybe a moon, asteroid, blighting comet. All those centres of gravity pulling me in, the regular orbit easy enough (comic shop, book shop, Joe's cafe) but the more variable dents in the fabric falling prey to the rule of least threat; the older, the closer and the more direct the pull, the greater the likelihood of deviation. Heavy element lying flat on her bed, watching Dr Who with a hand mirror because I'm too tired to turn over, still easy enough to disrupt with the right vibrations; the ansaphone, a knock on the door. Spinning head, blink on dust and leaves and an angry wind, trudge, trudge, but why is it easier, less tiring, to walk home than catch a bus? Have I worn a groove in the city by walking?

The rain has plastered yellow leaves to my windows.

Lurching, that's what I'm doing. Thing to thing. New Coldplay video's good, I like the song too. Uncharacteristic, that. It reminds me of No Regrets by Robbie Williams. Lurch, lurch. Eating in an empty Slovak restaurant called Moya, known only from a street-talk-mad-ramble (ending in the restaurant giving birth to a heavily-armed kebab van) and good, that saved me having to think about what to have for dinner. Lurch lurch. Setting up Kuda in front of Saiko-exciting because Seera seems to have a way with electronic pets, listening to it burble at Toy Machine, electronic noise. Lurch lurch. Blue and gold things for my sister's wedding, rockets in Next, motley in Bead Games, confetti in Borders, flowers in Evans. Nothing is where it should be. My mother isn't even on a mountain. She's looking through her box of make up. "I haven't worn make-up in years," she says, "I'm trying to find out what still works."

Where is that smell of cigars coming from? God! Do I need to wash everything I own again?

Orange and blue dinosaurs fighting on islands made out of cushions and clothes to an MTV soundtrack. No wonder I can't sleep at night. I try to take a camera to it but can't think through how to make the right levels of light available at this time of night though I can remember how I ought to be able to think this through if I wasn't so flat and unprogrammed and tired all the damn time, so I put off taking the photos till morning and forget and tidy up before I do and anyway how can I take photographs in the morning if the sun won't come out?

My hair just got long enough to pull out again. I've lost a lot today. If I want to stop, why can't I? And if I don't want to stop, well, why don't I know why I do it?

The thought keeps recurring: quit your job, temp for a bit. Shut up, sirens, I'm too tired to run away from you now.

Why do I want books I can't read? It shouldn't be enough that they're beautiful. Like this Tove Jansson-illustrated version of The Hobbit [noxious advert alert]. Thanks, Adrian.

I just finished my Power Certs Puissant avec Retsyn. Bet I can't get anything as nice in the UK.

Addendum (after the Doctor's appointment)

The Doctor doesn't know what's wrong and can't help. I have a hole in my arm and bloodtests in the mail but I don't expect anything from it. I've been here before, after all, sorry, whatever's wrong with you hasn't been invented yet. Slightly enhanced by the fact that I was in the hole when I talked to the Doctor which didn't help the coherence of the conversation but perhaps gave her a clearer idea about what was wrong with me. Glanced over at the screen as the nurse extracted my blood, and read it through from "very strange one, this..." to "seems very genuine and quite sensible," and was struck by how people see different things as important. Like, I was worried by how I'm forgetting things or vaguing out and then if I really concentrate I can sort of think round it and bring it back together again, but she seemed to see that as a positive thing, and didn't even make a note of it. Will I get better, I wanted to know. "I expect so," she said, "Most things get better if they don't get worse." Thank you, zen Dr Raine.
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