April 2013


Dave Pendleton gave me £20, on condition I spent it on a Bradford City – Rotherham ticket. I warned him! But he insisted.

I still have not seen City get even a single point this season, or for many seasons. The do not lose because I am there, they lose because they are not good enough on the day, and today City did not look like the complete bag of shite that they have looked like for many season, but Rotherham soaked up the pressure and scored with a penalty after 85 minutes, their second shot on goal!

I listened to Radio 2 for most of the match, until the battery died. I could still join in the clapping, but after the music died I could hear the ugly gobbed tossers moaning about the ref, or the uglier gobbed tossers moaning about City players. City were beaten by a better team but no City player surrendered.

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After the meeting at the New Bradford Playhouse I went to Dave Pendleton’s current residence in Little Germany, and me, him, and the lovely Heidi, carried a 3 and a half metre square display board about the Bradford City F.A. Cup winning team, made out of waffer thin cardboard, to the Midland Hotel, in gusting winds that made me feel like my Uncle Dimetri when he was first mate on a square rigger sailing ship.

I had a meeting this afternoon at the New Bradford Playhouse, and have provisionally agreed to a Cake and Kipling (celebrating Indian born Rudyard Kipling and Yorkshire baked spicy cakes) for the weekend of the Bradford Mela. I have to sort out food licences to enable home made cakes to be the cakes folk eat; and also the agreement of wonder baker Bev to supply the cakes I do not cook (mine will be edgy and create a dialectic of opinion; Bev’s will be like your mum makes/made, if your mum came from a solid place like Baildon).

I finished filling Bradford Council’s, self employed, Council Tax form in this morning.

It is probably the worst form I have ever filled in. It is like forking fog, and nobody I have asked for help is any better at fog forking than I am.

There are pages asking for many things the Inland Revenue do not ask me for when I self assess! There are demands for information I have never collected! The only ‘business’ specifically mentioned is taxi driving, but there was not even a ‘Do you own a vehicle?’ tick box to avoid the questions about vehicle use! (By the way: I had to look up the spelling of vehicle. Is it the strangest common spelling in the British English language?).

I am happy to pay tax I owe on an average gross income of £101 a week, and have done everything asked off me as regards liability to tax, but I am certain that my assessment for Council Tax will be wrong. If it is wrong in my favour I will have the fear of reassessment and clw-back at any time; and if it is wrong in their favour it will take many days, or even months, to get to a correct and fair conclusion.

Still; I chose to live a daft life doing creative things; it’s just that none of the daftness has created me more than a pittance; and I am not registered unemployed. Underemployed, without a shdow of a doubt, but if I have to sign on just to pay my Council Tax I will be a lot more expensive to the rest of you.

I was hanging around St Pancras Station this morning, on my way ‘home’, when I got a phone call from a chap from BBC Radio Leeds’ sports team asking if I fancied being interviewed about the Bradford City History walk, tomorrow, before the Rotherham game.

The answer was yes! But my problem is that I cannot afford to go to the game and the Burton game on Saturday, and I would much rather see the Burton game. It will seem a bit daft me going to Valley Parade to be interviewed and then sneaking away before the kick-off.

Coincidentally I was then called this evening by someone from BBC Look North. He is putting a pitch together for a TV documentary centred on Bradford City and the Great War, and wanted information.

The trip back was good. I sat with a Halifax family coming back from watching Chelsea get beaten at Wembley, so we had something in common.

Got off at Brighouse. The lass in the food shop, who goes out with nutters, recognised me; but claimed to have given up on nutters: so when I asked if she wanted the correct change, and she said: “Whatever’s best for you.” I told her that I couldn’t get that, because she’d already said she wasn’t going out with nutters any more! It made her laugh.

When I got home I decided I was so happy that I would not open any letters about Council Tax until tomorrow, so allowing me to stay happy for a little while longer. I wrote a few blogs ago about not having worries. Tomorrow I am fairly certain that will change.

I have been sorting and throwing loads of stuff lately. I came across a printed out e-mail from the days I was trying to meet women via the internet (about the same time I was meeting women by replying to newspaper ads). She had just been to see the first Lord of the Rings film (Fellowship of the Ring and hated it. She hated the middle class tweeness of the Shire, wanted to hurt the hobbits, but Gollum gave her ‘the horn!’.

It made me remember, and think. Lord of the Rings was an import part of my growing up. Between about 13 and 18 I probably read it over 20 times; and as I passed my 15 birthday I read everything Tolkien wrote and everything I could find written about him.

A very few of the things written about Lord of the Rings disturbed me. The orcs (aka goblins), trolls and men from the east and south of ‘Middle Earth’ were evil and seemingly just there to be slaughtered by the ethnically pure elves; and the hobbits, dwarfs and good humans from the west. Tolkien wrote of the orcs he created as just there to all be killed, presumably like the fears that dwelt within.

I need to read the books again.

Biggest shame was I did not write all this to the lass decades ago; or maybe I did; and that is why I cannot find any more e-mails from her.

This Ikea advert shows a couple in a garden fighting off gnomes that look like Tony Blair (so obviously very evil), ending with the tagline Say no to gnomes. Never mind that Say sod off to Swedish store’s stupid selling.

Me blogging about a telly ad shows I was obviously not in my own house, the one that has never had a telly since I moved in, in 1988.

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