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Abuse April 28, 2006

Posted by BiB in Uncategorized.
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Gosh, those flag posts don’t ‘arf (why not ‘alf?) take it out of you. I haven’t had such blogstipation since, well, the Punjab in ’77. I should never have risked that garam masala. And now, as shortly after any bout of the aforementioned ailment, I’m overcome with grief at all the vignettes I could potentially have blogged. All the little slices of life that would have had you gripped. All the tales of household bliss. Of blithe concubinage. Of intercultural relationships. Of DIY. Of how my Italian dictionary – note to self (another one): when asked to do an Italian-English translation, remind yourself, “BiB, you DO NOT speak Italian. Being able to pronounce the name of dishes and knowing that gn doesn’t have a g sound in it does not count” – was so made by a boy. In that inbetweeny bit where one lingo ends and its partner begins, there are a squillion illustrated-in-colour pages of boyish things with the Italian and English names for them. Who knew that ‘mud flap’ was ‘aletta parafango’ in Italian, eh? I think it’s Italy 1 England 0 on the poetry stakes there. Mud flap could only mean, well, mud flap, or be the name of a particularly grim village in some godforsaken county in the environs of the M62. Whereas Aletta Parafango… Well, Aletta Parafango could be anything. She could quite easily have been a revolutionary type. Dario Fo’s probably been to bed, or had wrongness in a meadow, with a heavily belipsticked lady called Aletta Parafango, cigarettes smoked throughout. Or it could easily be Italian for, say, Spotted Dick. (I once heard Spotted Dick said in the best comedy French accent ever. I mean, by an actual French person. He pronounced Dick ‘deek’, of course, but it was just perfect.) Or might easily be the Italians’ denomination for a type of spicy cocktail, a Shag at Butlins, or whatever that cocktail is called. Aletta Parafango. Marvellous. Hurrah for Italians. But I mustn’t translate from your language again. At least not for money. I just mustn’t.

Yes, so, blogging. Well, it’s relentless, isn’t it? You upload a few words to amuse yourself and hopefully another couple of kind folk and then before you know it it’s time to do another bloody one. Couldn’t blogger perhaps put a time limit on them, so that once you’ve reached 500 posts or whatever, your blog just nicely dies?

But, anyway, onwards and upwards.

So I was thinking. What to write about today, now that the occasion has presented itself so providentially. It was a toss-up. Football, of all things, so nearly won the day. Its defeat is not utterly ignominious because I’m still going to give Middlesbrough a mentionette. Did anyone watch their glorious victory over Steaua Bucharest? German commentary only made the occasion all the better. 3-0 down on aggregate and then storming back to win 4-3. It was north-east-tastic. But would I not like to bump into ANY female Middlesbrough supporter in a dark alley. Ever. I think it was the thought of getting mugged by them that made the players up their performance and do the fans proud. And don’t think for a second that I failed to mention to the Russian within a microsecond of the final whistle being blown that England has a team in two European finals and that Zenit – admittedly ‘our’ Russian team, from St. Petersburg – was knocked out by Partick Thistle or someone about 25 qualifying rounds ago. Because I did. “Probably Russian owns team,” he said back, languidly and good-lookingly. So I’ve stolen his cigarettes as a punishment.

No, what the meat of this post just has to be is booze. Awful news. I’ve given it up. Not for ever, I suppose, as then life would just be uncontemplatable. But, like it or not, I have, for the time being, given up booze. Which now means I am a non-person. Such a wrench. My personality only truly ever came to life/light once the first euphoria-inducing glug of Weissbier had passed my lips and tonsilless throat. I’m hoping there’s going to be an upside to all this, but it’s yet to surface. (Still, it’s only been a week.)

This is all to do with health, allegedly. I wrote a few posts back that my body now resembled something only vaguely reminiscent of the (male) human form. I am still mulling frantically all the ideas kind bloggers gave me about which sport an utterly unsporty blogger should take up. Frantically. The trouble is I still get a hot flush whenever I think that Mr. Decline and Fall does both rowing and weights. (God I fancy a beer.) But, anyway, I’ve decided booze is the root of all evil and that it has to – temporarily, I repeat – go. Which is awfully dreary. I’ve tried to make myself addicted to Bionade, but that’s no doubt full of sugar and since when has drinking Lucozade in a bar ever been vaguely acceptable? That said, I’ve already had a night or two out (and in) with folk drinking and I coped heroically admirably with that. It would be comforting to be able to say, “Gosh, as a non-drinker, sitting with drinkers, well, they were just so awful and really made fools of themselves and I’m just so glad I don’t drink.” But I can’t and they didn’t. They looked lovely and normal and happy and full of beans.

Anyway, I’m not a Protestant (or anything else), so don’t think self-abuse is the wickedest thing on earth (or is that Catholics?). So I’m looking for alternative forms of abuse until I can get back on the booze. Smoking’s definitely stepped up a notch. I find narcotics of the illegal kind too dreary for words, so don’t suppose I’ll be tempted down that road. (It’s not because of the illegality I find them boring. I’ve just never seen the appeal majorly.) But, in a twist to the suggest-a-sport theme, can you now suggest a vice so that I don’t fade away into monasticism altogether? Crime would be dreary. And I’m sure I’d be hopeless at mugging folk. (Erm, excuse me, would you mind awfully if I stole your handbag? Hopeless.) (Reminded of slice-of-life vignette from former life. Poverty. Youth. Ex-boyfriend. Bank bounced two cheques for the massive total sum of 50 pounds a second before ex-boyfriend’s salary went in and charged him precisely 50 pounds for the privilege. He rang to suggest this was perhaps a touch ungentlemanly of them and might they reconsider. They wouldn’t. At which pint he said to bank person, “Well, I’m going to have to go out and mug old ladies now.” “Well, I hope you won’t have to do that, Mr. BiB’s-ex.” Nice exchange.) Perhaps I could become an oligarch and buy Middlesbrough FC. Your best abusive suggestions are eagerly awaited…



1. daggi - April 28, 2006

The trouble is I still get a hot flush whenever I think that Mr. Decline and Fall does both rowing and weights.

I’d get a hot flush if I did rowing and weights but still was as small and slim as the man concerned. Or has your appearance changed drastically in the last 12 months, Leon?

2. BiB - April 28, 2006

Oh, is he the not-an-ounce-of-fat, wiry type?

3. leon - April 28, 2006

Yeah, I’m on the wiry side. Mind you ‘small’ is a bit misleading, I’m 6ft.

4. BiB - April 28, 2006

Daggi, wiry’s good, isn’t it? Not that I’ve got anything against beef, be it said.

A (heterosexual) friend visited last summer who must have been being a gym bunny since the last time I’d seen him with his kit off and he had the most muscly, wiry body I’ve ever seen. I wanted to touch, for scientific purposes, you understand, but didn’t dare suggest. But NOT AN OUNCE of fat. Just pure wiry strength. I thought that type of body was only manipulated in magazines, but no, they exist. Oh god, I need to start my pilates course NOW.

5. daggi - April 28, 2006

6ft? Are you sure? I’m sure you know better than I do, but to me, “6ft” sounds like “incredibly large”. And while you’re (Leon) probably taller than I am (as most people are, unless they’re part of a very un-PC display of midgets in an otherwise very PC (no animals) circus), I don’t have you in my recollections as being that big. I didn’t have neck-cramp after the last time you were here, for example.

6. BiB - April 28, 2006

Perhaps he’s had a late spurt of growth? Mind you, seeing as he says on his blog he was born in the 1970s – I assume he means December 1979, of course, whereas I was born very much at the other end of it, I’m afraid – the spurt would be extremely late indeed, at at least 26.

7. daggi - April 30, 2006

Older than that.
I may check out the lankiness-rowing results over the coming week. Jealous already? You wouldn’t be if you knew how much it’s costing.

8. Bowleserised - April 30, 2006

Are you rowing to Britain?

9. BiB - May 2, 2006

B., what a good idea. If we ever all meet – I’m sure we will. I’m feeling less autistic these days – I insist we have rowing-to-Britain on the conversation agenda. You, Daggi and I could row to somewhere convenient, getting in fantastic shape in the process – I have rowed occasionally, actually, and it’s surprisingly pleasurable – and Leon would be there to meet us at Tilbury and we’d instantly compare muscles. If that’s not too flirtatious.

Never had you down as small, Daggi. You write big.

10. Bowleserised - May 2, 2006

I used to row too, though I didn’t like going fast. I was more of a “hello birds! hello trees!” type of boatie. Being this tall meant I got to sit in the middle though, sandwiched between two powerful Scandinavians. I think Radio Free used to row too. When will we have enough for an eight?

11. leon - May 2, 2006

[daggi] Actually, I’m 6’1″, or was last time I checked. Perhaps you’re taller than you think? Perhaps I’ve shrunk?

12. BiB - May 2, 2006

B., WOOF, sandwiched between two powerful Scandinavians. I think if you ever go into writing porn, you have your first plot-line there. Were they called Sven and Sven, or Lars and Lars (à la Priscilla Queen of the Desert)? And why Scandinavians, quite? Weren’t there enough English rowers to go round, or were you in the far north?

Leon, it must be Daggi being modest and thinking she is smaller than she is. I refuse to believe you’ve started shrinking.

13. Bowleserised - May 2, 2006

“I think if you ever go into writing porn, you have your first plot-line there.”

*has private laugh to self*

Actually your imagination has run away with you. I’m a girl and it was a boat full of girls (apart from the cox, *insert well-worn joke here*). A nice Swede called Camilla and a Finn called Anna (actually, Finns aren’t Scandinavian, are they? Oops). I had to dye my hair blonde to match.

14. leon - May 3, 2006

“boat full of girls”?

Still sounds like a pornographic plot-line to me.

Aren’t the Finns basically Hungarians or Tatars or something else emanating from some godforsaken stretch of steppe?

15. BiB - May 4, 2006

Well, Leon, you might have to write a whole Finno-Ugric dissertation on the Finns’ origins. It’s all a bit of a mystery, but yes, they are the (fantastically distant) ethnic and linguistic cousins of the Hungarians. Much closer to the Estonians. One theory setting Helsinki ablaze with excitement at the moment, probably, is that the Finns might actually be, ethnically, a Western, vaguely Scandinavian folk, but somehow ended up with a language from further east. (Seems unlikely.) Actually, the Russian comes from a Finno-Ugric bit of Russia. But that’s all that sets it apart from everywhere else. It’s still a shithole.

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