It was my decision to start writing this late today. There was so much I had to do, wanted to do, day job-wise, because it is the first day of the month, that pushing this out well into the afternoon seemed the most obvious thing to do. Although I have also decided to work Thursday and Friday – extra bank holidays to celebrate figurehead as much part of the Establishment as Boris Johnson is a ridiculous way to run a country. The next thing they’ll want to do is bring back Imperial measurements – oh, wait… Britain is obviously the biggest open-air comedy show ever. An international laughing stock. An estimated £28 mil for this weekend of celebrations from our taxes – how much difference that money would make to the NHS or the cost of living crisis. But, never mind, we have to party. There’s a ring of familiarity to that, and not a good one.
I spotted some appalling typos in yesterday’s post which I can only apologise for, and blame my keyboard. One thing that always happens when I go to work in an office I have at my disposal in London is that my loud and furious typing is commented on. It has always been this loud and furious. I was brought up on my father’s old Adler manual typewriter where you had to depress the keys about an inch to make them register on the paper (I even wrote my first novel on that beast), graduated onto an Olivetti portable (half-inch depressions only to make shapes on the paper) which travelled round Europe with me, and then onto an IBM golfball electric typewriter that needed no hard typing at all, but the habit was by then here to stay. That’s a long way round of telling you that the letters wear off my keyboards extremely quickly, and Dell (and other computer makers) still don’t have the wherewithal to make them harder-wearing, and nor do they accept over-quick wear – this keyboard, for example, started showing signs of wear after just over a month – as a reason for a free replacement. Which strikes me as ridiculous and just yet another way of them making more money.
The study is still a mess. Not just because there’s stuff in here that was moved out of the garage while the builders built (and that building is not yet quite finished), but also because there are day job notes, notebooks, and pens strewn across the desk, as well as – on the peripheries of the desk, and on the armchairs, and on the chest of drawers that’s the base of my broadcasting desk – writing notes, broadcasting notes, bits of paper ripped from magazines that may be the next inspiration, or the next thing to stick on the wall, the next thing to kick off a train of thought, the next thing to send me scurrying off down another blind alley of activity. And yet I’m a week behind with sticking these scribbles into my journal, three months behind with a phone call to an old friend, three months behind with arranging an appointment with the hygienist, a life-time behind with making lots of money from writing. I am sure I remember a time when it didn’t feel like this. I do honestly think time is speeding up in its entirety, that we’re being sucked into some kind of vortex where the planets are moving more quickly, and our clocks with them, so that the instruments we measure time with don’t actually show the speeding up of time because they’re speeding up as part of the entire system – it makes sense to me.
So much for struggling for words.
AGGIE’S ART OF HAPPINESS – CHAPTER 106