Sunday, 15 January 2012

Misunderstanding 2

Bottles of Squash confused me as a kid.   Well, the instruction 'Dilute To Taste' confused me.
I couldn't work out why something would be flavourless until water was added.

I thought it meant that in order to be able to taste it, you had to dilute it.


A bit whiney this one, but after the horrific nature of last year - a year I was convinced *had* to be better than the previous year which featured some of the most appalling things I ever experienced - this one has got off to another weird start.

I do contract work for the University and after 3 weeks off over the Xmas/New Year vacation I got a new position at Winchester School of Art.   I though this would be quite fun.  Now, there's nothing wrong with the actual job - I'm actually doing real work that takes all day and is relatively interesting instead of sitting around waiting for something to do - but the problem is that I'm at Winchester School of Art; the very place I should be doing an MA at.

It is massively frustrating being in the very building I was denied access to because my tutors at Uni refused to respond to my emails about references. Every day, I see people turning up to do the course I was supposed to do and to add insult to injury, my job is basically sifting through the applications to see who is a likely candidate for the course I should be on.  Bah.

I think I probably died three years ago and this has actually been hell.

Plus after 30 years of suffering with the same back pain; in the same place,  I've learned to deal with it.   I get get about quite happily on my stick and suck up the pain without much in the way of bitching.

Good for me.

Except yesterday, a different part of my back did something unexpected and now I've no idea how to move, walk using a stick or wriggle a bit to lessen the pain.   My back is on fire, I can hardly move and I"m in a seriously bad mood.

And of course, being a temp, I don't get sick pay, so I"m going to have to battle the train station and it's unpleasant rude shouty school kids whilst in pain and hobbling about on a stick.

And don't get me started on being forced to move house because a for sale sign has appeared on the flat . . .

Next post will be less whiney. Promise.

Tuesday, 10 January 2012

A Question of Taste

Well, there's something else that makes me angry.

Middle Class wankers hee-hawing about soup ramps and chestnut scorers and how fucking anal they can be about food.

God save us all!

I mean, I know food; I enjoy food; I do like authenticity in food, but its not the be all and end all.   When it boils down to it, it all ends up as tomorrows shit.

Enjoy, yes, but for god's sake, snobbery and elitism in food is just tasteless.

Friday, 6 January 2012

Next week . . .

. . . is going to be something of a challenge as I start a new job.

My usual method of introducing myself to a new team is to say "Hi I'm Will. Have some of this lovely cake that I made...."

Or biscuits 

Or savouries....

I cook for others but this is often an excuse for 'social eating'. Being nice legitimises my over eating, or at least my consumption of sweet or fatty bakery items!

So I've taken the bold decision of not doing this, this time and I"ll just have to find a non-edible form of introducing myself to the new team.


Cake always works so well, too.

Thursday, 5 January 2012

So it's come to this . . .

I took a fairly dramatic decision today and joined Weight Watchers.  I weigh 19 Stones and 4lb which, totting it all up into pounds come out as larger than Homer.

How the bloody hell did this happen?

I genuinely believe that overeating isn't the problem, however. I don't eat a great deal and tracking my food during this first week bears this out. I've not really changed my eating habits (maybe a bit less chocolate) and have been incredibly thorough about logging each and every detail of what I"m eating.

With the exception of one day when I used three extra Pro-Points (tm), I've been way under my allocated daily points typically eaten around 40 points of my allotted 52. You see, I love veg, lentil, fish, etc., I have the kind of diet that you are advised to eat if you want a healthy diet!

Today, I've had a grand total of 30 of my points and really couldn't eat another thing. I've been eating like this for the last 7 or 8 years, so adding weight because of going into 'starvation mode' really doesn't bear out.

That said, I'm happy to be here and hope WW can help with what is a thorny problem, indeed!

Secondly, I think my big problem is that I absolutely loathe being active. With the exception of walking to work every day (about 2 miles each way) and the normal routine things like shopping, pottering about the house, charging across the other side of the University Campus where I work for one reason or another, I don't really do a lot. Sport and exercise just leaves me cold and the physical sensation of sweating makes me physically sick - so yes I utterly loathe summer! Sometimes I go for a cycle ride with my partner, but on the whole, I don't exercise. That may be my downfall. 

Lets see how it goes . . .

Wednesday, 4 January 2012


I had something of an Epiphany yesterday regarding  My Life As An Artist.

I am constantly surprised that I was given a place on the Fine Art Degree course I completed about 18 months back.  Constantly.  I left University baffled as I don't really think I learned a great deal but came out of it with the Passey Prize for best work in the Degree Show and personal commendations from the external examiners . . . plus a look of bug-eyed WOW from a couple of my tutors which was worth the price of admission.

The one thing that baffles or amuses me, dependant on mood, is that I did three years of Fine Art and cannot paint or draw.  Seriously.   How does that work?  Drawing, wielding an instrument that makes marks, is the basic unit of communication and I can't do it.  I feel like a fraud, but also believe (as a previous entry about art shows) that Modern Art is a fraud, however much I enjoy it; I guess we're well suited.

Anyway, since leaving University, I've done virtually no art.  I did a drawing for a friend based on a Samauri character he created for a comic he produces that actually turned out pretty well bearing in mind I can't draw. Other than that, creative endeavours has been limited to the craft corner.  Candles, Candles and more candles, basically.

But I'm getting an itch that needs to be scratched.

Now the problem is that having done three years of hot-housing installations, I've actually forgotten how to do what I used to do; the very stuff that got me into University in the first place; photography, ceramics, abstract painting, etc.

It's time to go back, I think.

Of course, now being a trained artist, technically everything I produce is 'officially art' and has that weight behind it.  As one as I can justify it, it's art.   Madness.

The big thing I've been struggling with is actually that, I'm an artist with no traditional art skills and my chosen mode of art at Uni is the least saleable form of art in art history - I did sound sculpture.  No one wants to buy what is essentially just transient waves in space.

I felt that I had to go back to basics and have filled my front room with 'How To Paint and Draw' books.  They have had exactly the opposite effect to what I wanted them to have.  They've stalled my creative flow, intimidated me and made me believe that I couldn't possibly be an artist.

Fuck that.

Yesterday, it occurred to me.   I *am* an artist.  I trained at University to *be* an artist.  I got a good degree, prizes and commendations.  I can produce what I like.   It may not be liked, it may not sell, but that is completely beside the point.

I've thrown away the books, taken back my creativity and goddamn i've started painting.  And you know what?  I'm enjoying myself, doing art, for the first time since Uni.

It might be crap, but it's mine and it's art.

I might even show you some at some point.

Tuesday, 3 January 2012


Sorry.  Can't get past the Ina Garten Post, so will have to abandon that one.

Half arsed service will be resumed soon . . .


Maybe this year I"l be a bit more consistent in writing this thing....