- Tibor Fischer, Under the Frog
At 19:32 15/05/2006, That Girl wrote: > > Damn right, touche! I'm tempted to say more, but am hushing. Makes me weepingly grateful that I deleted the "Pictures of sexy girls scantily clad are widely available, for free, on the Internet" bit of my response to your wooing request . . . Why is it, actually, that May always seems to find me broken up and depressed and alone and melancholy? It's a striking pattern. At least, when I was living in a college town, I got the consolation of all the hollering, simpering students clearing out so I could enjoy some isolation with my loneliness. Actually, London still now manages to feel somehow desolate: this is either an habituated reaction on my part or, more likely, down to the fact that I've got the weekdays to wander around in now. There's also of course the small matter of having just finished a ten-year project (that of getting published) and, you know, the Big What Now. (I feel the American writer Jim Harrison got right to the heart of things when he said, "Our main problem, and one that we share with all other Earthly creatures, is what to do next.") And but then again, it's never quite that simple. Alright, missy, and but so you get MY day now - but in reverse order. • I am writing to you. • I am straining for the sound of the rain it has been threatening all day. And but now, something is pouring out of something else in the courtyard, teasing me with its tinkling. • Dinner is on the wok. It is for rather later tonight. I've discovered that my big honking veggie stir fries are even better (MUCH better) after I let them stir in their own juices for a couple of hours. • I am listening to The Books album on repeat (as I have been for a couple of days). It seems quite closely to suit my mood (more's the worse for me). • I am halfway through, M'ashallah, my medicinally prescribed three pints for the evening. Depressives are great and famous self-medicators. Alcohol is a great local anaesthetic it goes straight to the brain. I am drinking Champion Golden Ale one of a vanishingly small handful of beers I like at this point. (I'm at least as much of a beer snob as I am an apple snob; fascinatingly, in my long-ish period of not drinking at all, I REMAINED a huge beer snob. A non-drinking beer snob. I'd sniff at other people's beers and exuberantly disapprove.) • I walked along the high street, dodging the hustlers and smelly Antipodean backpackers (I LOVE Earl's Court all except the high street, ie Earl's Court Road, which I emphatically abhor), on to the Sainsbury's Local at the end, where I knew I could get cold Champion. • Zig-zagged through Chelsea, where I had taken myself to see the 4pm showing of "Brick". 4pm is too late - there were more than two other people in the house. Almost walked out at a certain point was having trouble following the machine-gun hard-boiled noir dialogue. Glad I stayed until the end. It was very clever. In some ways, too bad for it, it trod "Heathers" territory. But in others, it was admirable and certainly very amusing. Genuinely fleshed and compelling characters. Fantastic, (plus fantastical ie totally unbelievable, but that criticism is out of line) dialogue. Think you'd like it. • Did this and that online - including some needed book promotion things. Knocked off a handful of the messages in my INBOX flagged earlier as "RESPOND NOW YOU DELINQUENT SORRY BASTARD!!!!" • Had two pitchers of creamy frozen fruit frappe (one banana/pineapple, the other banana/strawberry/mocha) whilst sitting on my couch, devouring (and obsessively highlighting) volume 4 of Churchill's "History of the Second World War". I find this is just about the only thing I really enjoy doing lately. (Ie lying on the couch reading Churchill and drinking frappes.) The good news is that I REALLY enjoy it. Churchill is my new hero. When he said, "History will be kind to me, for I intend to write it", I didn't initially realise he was speaking entirely literally. He was such a polymath: historian, biographer, extremely talented amateur oil painter, soldier, politician, statesman, Saviour of the Free World. (He even wrote and published a novel, very early on.) His account of the great struggle manages to be both completely sweeping and intensely personal. This is because he was at the centre of virtually everything that happened. If you want to learn something about strategy, persistence, organisational theory, leadership, cleaving to principles, patience, calling things by their names, and humility paired with unflagging faith, read these (six) books. Totally gripping. "Never, never, never, never give up." - Winston S. Churchill • I slept another hour or two. • I decided I still had no energy and it was going to be a record fifth day in a row of not going to the health club. Yikes. You know it's bad when . . . • I drank my tea, two cups of rooibos, while reading mail, news, and obsessively checking my Amazon ranking and the relevant literary blogs. • I awoke to the stirring sounds of the improvised rock quarry evidently set up by the workmen in the courtyard. Mmm, mmm, nothing like stone and circular saws to gently draw one from the Dream World . . . • I slept. There. I talked about me. Bon apetit. xxm Michael Stephen Fuchs | firstname.lastname@example.org | www.michaelfuchs.org Author of THE MANUSCRIPT: www.the-manuscript.com What the critics say: "Breathless cyber-techno thriller - a great novel!" "High philosophical ambitions." "Clever and engaging." "A high-energy, enthusiastic yarn - a captivating debut." "Dazzling - a tightly-plotted thriller, but also a terrific literary chronicle of our Electronic Age."