It is 4 o’clock on a Saturday morning and I’ve come downstairs to write. I can’t stay long because I should be sleeping. I can’t sleep because I woke up to go for a wee. I woke up to go for a wee because the cat decided to plonk her hairy arse right between my legs on the bed and in doing so woke me up. So, in fact, I didn’t wake up to go for a wee, I woke up because I married a woman who has a cat. The cat is (I’ll whisper this in case she hears) a fickle nob, but the woman is fabulous so it evens out in the long run. I then lay awake thinking about why I’ve had all week to wake up early with a good (arguable) idea, but have saved it for the one morning that I could actually get some proper sleep. Then I started thinking about a good idea, but I couldn’t think of one until about 10 minutes ago, and the idea was patience. Not the concept but the song.
That’s right, I thought. At 4 in the morning I thought about Gary Barlow, which is something even Mrs Barlow rarely does. I was lying there thinking about Gary Barlow because I was trying to think about something to think about because I couldn’t sleep, and when you can’t sleep you may as well do something else instead of throwing a cat out of the window. Little thoughts trickled around in my head – I should write about Miles Davis (which I shall one day), I should write about Ernest Hemingway ( which I shall one day, when I’ve read one of his books), I should write about writing (which I am, now). About what, though? Well, let’s keep it to 500 words and then it’s do-able and then I can write more often.
500 words (give or take). ‘Patience’ is a good song and Gary Barlow is a song writer. I didn’t miss out a second ‘good’ there, in case you were wondering. He also wrote ‘Greatest Day’ which makes my teeth ache and my hairs in-grow. ‘Greatest Day’ has become the national anthem for crippled kids and battered wives and stray cats and beached whales and any rubbish programme that needs a shit anthem blaring out over it, and it seems such a shame that we can’t do better. Last night I watched a news article that made it look like we were being invaded by sperm whales. On Wednesday I read a story about a man who had died because he choked whilst trying to eat a whole cheeseburger in one go. Donald Trump is running for president (actually he’s standing up and dribbling shit, but that’s being pedantic). People are turning up on beaches to take loads of pictures of dying sperm whales and then talking to the news about how sad it is that sperm whales are dying on beaches while people are stood gawping at them. And here I am worrying that I couldn’t think of anything to write about. To write about people being stupid is actually easy when it’s in your face all the time.
This has run over 500 words now but I may have got a new format. 500 words (give or take), but more often. And you should listen to Miles Davis more often. Lots of things are stupid. Miles Davis wasn’t. The cat isn’t and ‘the wife’ certainly is not. But then it does take a clever person to make the distinction.
G B Hewitt. 6.2.2016.
Ps, I’m not that person!
PPs, 610. No, 612, no, 614, oh, we could do this all day.