I have just received the finished book cover and I’m ever so pleased with it.
Thank you Dean!
At work but away from my usual desk, I must have done some sort of nervous tucking hair behind ears manoeuvre, which resulted in my glasses flying several metres through the air and bouncing across a concrete floor. These were new glasses (which probably explains why they weren’t in precisely the expected place on my head!) so I was particularly pleased to find they had survived the ordeal, although since I’d got a buy-one-get-one-free offer it wouldn’t have been the end of the world if they had broken. But it did make me appreciate how much lighter and tougher and probably cheaper glasses have become over the years, and it made me think about Dave – who was my boss about twenty-five years ago, who had severe myopia. I once tried his glasses on and apart from them weighing a tonne; it was like looking through one of those bees-eye kaleidoscopes things they sell in retro toy shops.
Dave was an unknown quantity, recruited from outside. He didn’t say much to anyone for the first week or two, so none of us quite knew what to make of him. He was probably just ‘finding his feet’ but I warmed to the guy the first time I heard him speak. He had left his goldfish bowl office and was ambling between the desks of our open plan department towards the exit when his fit, young secretary called him back because there was someone important on the phone. He rolled his eyes and said, “Fucking hell, I was just going for a crap,” and back-tracked to his office to take the call.
Anyway, about the glasses. He had called us all into his office for a meeting. He started by asking the lads to tone down the innuendo; the school-boy humour … but there was a wasp buzzing around and people were flapping at it. “Just ignore it,” he said. “If you ignore it, it will ignore you.” He went on to explain that he enjoyed a joke as much as anyone, but it was going too far when no-one could say anything without it being turned into something smutty. Then he moved on to the next item on the agenda – except he couldn’t find his agenda – it had been misplaced. “Where’s my secretary? I need my secretary in here. I need my secretary screwed to the wall …”
Our raucous hilarity must have made the wasp panic. It did a crazy circuit of the small office we were packed in, and dived for safety behind the thick lenses of Dave’s glasses. He reacted – like anyone would – by flinging the glasses from his face so they hit the desk and shattered. Poor Dave, he was an ‘occasional’ contact lens wearer but had to wear them for about a fortnight with streaming red eyes until his glasses were fixed.
Thank goodness for modern materials and BOGOF’S.
I wish I could write poetry. I was put off it at an early age – something to do with the mournful voice people adopted to recite traditional poetry – and although a modern style has evolved and I can recognise and appreciate good poetry, there is still some sort of barrier that blocks me from attempting to write it, which is a shame; it might have saved me from proof-reading 116,000 words!
My favourite combinations of words are lyrics within the songs I love.
Here are a few snippets:
I’m torn between the light and dark
Where others see their targets
Should I kiss the viper’s fang
Or herald loud the death of Man
I’m sinking in the quicksand of my thought
And I ain’t got the power anymore
‘The Bewlay Brothers’ Bowie
Now my Brother lays upon the Rocks
He could be dead, He could be not
He could be You
He’s Camelian, Comedian, Corinthian and Caricature
‘Drive in Saturday’ Bowie
Pour me out another phone
I’ll ring and see if your friends are home
‘Word on a Wing’ Bowie
Just because I believe don’t mean I don’t think as well
Don’t have to question everything in heaven or hell
‘Miracle of Love’ Eurythmics
There must be a bitter breeze
To make you sting so viciously
They say the greatest coward
Can hurt the most ferociously
‘Sweet Child of Mine’ Guns ‘n’ Roses
Her hair reminds me of a warm safe place
Where as a child I’d hide
And pray for the thunder
And the rain
To quietly pass me by
‘Bleeding Me’ Metallica
This thorn in my side is from the tree I’ve planted
‘Wherever I May Roam’ Metallica
Anywhere I roam
Where I lay my head is home
‘Leaving New York’ REM
All’s not lost, still in my eye
The shadow of necklace across your thigh
‘Send Me An Angel’ Scorpions
The wise man said just find your place
In the eye of the storm
Seek the roses along the way
Just beware of the thorns
‘Send Me An Angel’ Scorpions
Hear this voice from deep inside
It’s the call of your heart
Close your eyes and your will find
The way out of the dark
‘With or Without You’ U2
See the stone set in your eyes
See the thorn twist in your side.
I wait for you.
‘Love is Blindness’ U2
Love is clockworks
And cold steel
Fingers too numb to feel
Squeeze the handle
Blow out the candle
Love is blindness