September 19th, 2003


Pink Light

Too many headlines: giant guinea pigs once roamed the world, Siberian forests sold off (to fund more football transfers?), David Byrne works for the EU (?), Gilligan's PDA not actually a Palm but a Sharp, Nigel Dempster retiring, endless streams of this stuff. I long ago got into the habit of sleeping with the World Service on. At one point it was because I could lie there on the brink of sleep and listen to the words unfold into their other meanings. Now I suspect that I can't sleep without people talking in the background. I'd never hear burglars as long as they made occasional mention of international affairs . 'UK is the European centre of binge drinking', all filled up with fluff now. Let's turn it off. I've slept way past the mark.
There's hasn't been much mention of Angelina Jolie recently, but Madonna is still heavily circulating. News appears and disappears, machine noise, I can't find a report of the bomb attack on the Russian security centre in the Caucasus but I do find that Sergei Bodrov apparently died in an avalanche recently. Only just watched him in a film a few days back. Do I need any more information? Isn't there a point at which there is enough data, but precious little knowledge? Possibly today. Russian Orthodox priest performs gay marriage. Defrocked. Nizhny Novgorod. There's no coffee in the house. Could be an explanation.
I enjoyed finding the Jotto site recently, especially the Bubblesoap section. But these books are still tainted with an ominous feeling of dread. I was living in Tokyo at the time and had bought a copy of Monkey Business by the same husband and wife team. I gave it to my girlfriend. I can't actually remember the story anymore: monkey travels in space, runs a factory making electronic devices. She managed to decode the entire story as an elaborate allegory of our amphetamine lifestyle. The charming book was no longer benign. As the months progressed, most things became similarly infected. Initially, I believed all this and was sufficiently excited to be living within a Dick novel at last. But I lost faith. I wanted the tv just to be a tv again and not some sinister communication device run by extra-dimensional yakuza.
I was at a party on Saturday - it was full of friendly Japanese designers, photographers and the like. Dean kept on trying to get me to speak Japanese. Banal conversations about what I did in Japan - oh, studying, teaching. What do you miss about Japan? Curry rolls mostly. Very banal conversation on my part. Somewhere neurons are still firing off: 'Do not reveal your mission directives!' I'd like to be back at that party now and be breaking a few more final pieces of programming.
"Here's a few more final drinks for you" says the barman. What the hell does that mean, I think, is that a threat or something? I juggle the words 'few', 'more' and 'final' around. Try and find the balance. Decline into unconsciousness as I do so. Slipping off the barstool now...
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