Tuesday, October 11, 2005

The Day Today

Hmmm. I’ve been a bit stumped for things to tell you recently, but realising it's been a few days and you weirdos hang on my every word I have devised a novel way to fill up some space. I give you: October 11th 2005 - How Huw Saw It.

7.05: Alarm goes off. Curse self for not remembering to change my phone's alarm in line with my hour-later-than-usual 10 o’clock start today. Reset alarm for the irresponsibly-leaving-it-late time of 8.30.

8.30: Awake with a start to horrible horrible alarm 'tune'. Matters not helped by the fact phone is now concealed somewhere in or under the duvet following my immediate collapse having reset it earlier. Morning gunk sticks eyes together, making it harder to seek out my tormentor.

8.33: Stand in confusion at the sight of the broken shower-holder that greets me, but then recall desperately snapping the shower bracket from the wall as it mercilessly sprayed scalding water on me a day earlier. Opt for a quick shallow bath rather than trying to wrestle the shower. Briefly feel guilty about betraying my special time with my Sunday Bath.

8.39: Starting as I mean to go on, I do my first of countless needless email checks which will undoubtedly occur during the day. Overjoyed to see that between now and the time of previous email check sometime in the witching hour, someone has actually emailed me. It is moments like these which make my obsessive ‘check email’ button pressing feel justified

9.09: Realise with horror I have been vacantly sat in front of the computer for half an hour. Flap as I try and decide between getting breakfast or getting dressed.

9.17: During tea-making, encounter a similarly behind-schedule Housemate Louise in the kitchen. She casts her keen fashion eye over my smoking jacket-cum-robe (breakfast won the toss).
"You look like Noel Coward."
I pause mid-kettle pour.
"A young Noel Coward," she adds.
Satisfied, I continue to pour.

9.40: Get to bus stop, and calculate the slim chances of my bus getting me to work in under 20 minutes. Am forced to recalculate as first four buses shoot past full to the gunnels. Become alarmed when I realise a rather ugly old lady caked in poorly applied make-up has hemmed me in between the bus shelter and a bin, and is mumbling mad un’s language at me. Strain to hear.
"Sooner or later, it’s going to happen. Sooner or later, it’s going to happen. Sooner or later, it’s going to happen."
I nod diplomatically and, satisfied, she mantras off down Camden Road.

10.14: Pelt through Tavistock Square - bypassing tramp engaging in delightful bout of morning blennorrhoea - into the Department, up the stairs because some fiend neglects to hold the lift for me, and into my meeting with students who’s projects I am supervising. Crouch over panting and wiping the sweat from my brow, unable to hide my intense irritation that only two of the twelve have yet shown up. Bloody students. Sit around shrugging and saying "so…?" for a while.

10.33: Attempt to text colleague regarding study we are working on, but butter fingeredly send message to Former Love Interest, instructing her to phone an unknown man as a favour to me. Can’t be bothered to write another as an explanation: she will have to cope.

10.58: Rest of students arrive, one of whom is sporting a very low cut top and one of the more stunning pairs I have seen in a long time, and sits directly in front of me, leaning forward and breathing heavily having rushed in (and yet still managed to be an hour late. Tsck.). Pretend not to be flustered, and fixate my attention on a mark on the ceiling as I address the group.

11.49: Quick pointless email check, which turns into a brief blog perusal. Stumble across Greavsie’s ploy of writing today’s entry as a regularly updated account of his day. Ingenious plot hatches to steal his idea. Spin round in my swivel chair, laughing manically at own cunning: no one ever need know!

12.00: Seminar with ‘my children’ begins. Am attempting to rouse them from their fresher’s fearfulness by setting them the ‘Glamour Topics’ to discuss. However, today’s topic (seminar entitled "Gayness: What’s That About?") doesn’t prove enough to get them out of their nervous shells. Fine, if that’s the way you want to play it, [thinks I] it’ll be the enthralling world of Models of Attention for you next week! Towards the end, fittest girl pipes up with a question.
"Will you be testing us on sexual orientation later in the term?"
Eyes widen, hundreds of inappropriate images flash through mind, and just stop self from spluttering.
The pause before answering is just long enough to let the rest of the group work out what I am thinking. Bugger.

13.15: Meet with Mr M for lunch. Nice weather so we sit outside. Discuss talking points from last night’s Dinner Club (we had Thai Green Curry by the way – heartfelt thanks to all of you who voted). Still lunching, think I see The Ex-Girlfriend on other side of the road. Eventually realise it is not her, but girl looks over in my direction anyway, her attention having been caught by my attempts to remain inconspicuous (i.e. loudly hiss "fuuuuuuck" at Mr M, pile up bottles of tomato ketchup on napkin holder and with wide eyes fearfully peer over my swiftly assembled barrier).

16.30: Meet participant for my study. Tell him "it won’t take long".

17.40: Try to hide glee as participant announces he "isn’t fussed" by the luxury biscuits laid on for him during his break. That means I can have them!

19.58: Begin to despair at how long study is taking. Equally despair about the fact that participant still seems to be enjoying himself, prolonging the interview section so as to talk of all manner of things. Curse qualitative research element.

20.29: Leave work. Prepare to play Bus Bingo: which bus, or combination thereof, will get me home fastest. Soon make wrong decision. Have to put up with close proximity to aggressive violent old man incoherently swearing at everyone onboard for first 15 minutes. Become obsessed with his overly large and red nose though. Mixed feelings when he departs.

21.15: Arrive Home. Must Check Email! Am such a saddo. Tidy amount of emails received though: feel vindicated.

21.51: Eat dinner in front of computer while instant messaging Beloved. Find it quite tricky juggling tasks of typing and shovelling. Manage to spill rice onto and into keyboard. Attempts to remove result in Beloved receiving the following messages:
Used to my slapdash typing and spelling, Beloved takes no notice.

22.09: Former Love Interest instant messages me asking what the hell I was on about earlier. Then decides to reminisce (see pisstake) about a rather (see overly and embarrassingly) drunken display on my part one evening when visiting her Hometown about two years ago. Will I never live it down?

22.22: Head out to the shop. Am mindful of the hoodlums that inhabit the terrain between Tufnell Park Towers and my favourite late night shop, so adopt a hoodie for camouflage and running shoes should a turn be taken for the worse. On the way to shop, receive a call from girl who you may recall I confided in last week.
"Huw, remember how I went to Tufnell Parker’s Sex Clinic last week?" she kindly asks for the benefit of readers.
"Yeeees," I reply.
"Weeeeeeell. I’ve got the clap!" she announces.
"Ah. Oh dear," I say. "Well, I’m just on the way to the shop, so I’ll buy you a huge bar of chocolate and pop it through your letterbox on my way back, eh?"
Just about resist urge to add gag along lines of ‘on second thoughts, on current form maybe you should consider cutting down on letting strange men shove things in your letterbox late at night’ as (a) it may seem insensitive, and (b) I cannot quite think of a satisfactory wording. It speaks volumes about me that (b) was by far the deciding factor.

22.40: Return from shop and begin to write account of the day.

23.20: Computer crashes and account of the day is lost. Reboot and begin from scratch. I facking hate computers.


Afe said...

They should invent an alarm which wakes you up with something pleasant instead of irritating noises. Like a vibrating bed or something.

emaleejayne said...

"you weirdos" hmmppfff.

Isn't that a bit like the pot calling the kettle black? ;)

Anyway, weird is good. I can live with being weird. Right?

deanne said...

Please. If there were a vibrating bed, I'd be lying around in it all day.

Huw, it sounds like you are quite the busy bee!

Chris said...

I'm glad you have finally been initiated into the 'desperately trying not to stare at your students' club. You are lucky that yours aren't ripely budding at the tender age of just sixteen, and you haven't just had to stumble through a presentation on 'Feminism and pornography' with their big wide innocent eyes staring at you intently. Just wait until its summertime again my lad. Just you wait.

...shit, really just proved that 'weirdo' point

Cleavers said...

Oh, the 'bus bingo' of London. How fondly I remember those days. The thrill of getting on the right bus at the right time, only for it to take an hour to move 50 yards and you end up having to peg it to the nearest tube in the hopes that you'll arrive at work sometime before noon.

I really miss it, honest, I really, really do and hate the 20 min door to door commute I have now.

OldHorsetailSnake said...

You mention girls, and you mention or imply sex quite a bit in this piece. I guess you are well.

Curly said...

I wonder if fittest girl will get to the stage where she writes "I love you" on her eyelids and slowly bat them while staring at you longinly... a la Indiana Jones?

Curly said...

man, my spelling has gone to shit.

Shane said...

Oh Huw, the students have spotted your 'weakness' - you have a libido. And they will use this to manipulate you. Await mountains of frank cleavage... even in winter!

Lucy said...


Even though it looks like I was cogging off you, I swear I wasn't. My word is gold. So too is Housemate Louise's Coward comparison.

greavsie said...

Ah, excellent.