Saturday, 29 January 2005

Pink Castles, Factions and bad humour

The cruellest month has arrived once again and I feel myself consumed with hatred. This is a sign that I have excess energies and they need to be channelled into something more productive than launching a pointless jihad against the ‘Murder she Wrote’ fan-club. Were I at home, my father would note this change in my demeanour and send me out on some futile expedition into the garden to stack bricks and purge these emotions with the Victorian work ethic. If I do not deal with this aggression then it will fester inside me and cause me to go off the boil at the slightest pretext. In between bouts of doing my project I try to think of suitable distractions, yesterday I considered trying to make Ricin out of household ingredients but thought better of it. The young Ivan the Terrible’s method was to throw live dogs off the roof of the Kremlin to ‘observe their pain’. Given my experiences with Abi’s dog I feel this might be rather therapeutic, but I don’t want the RSPA breathing down my neck just at the moment.

Most of my loathing over the past couple of years has been reserved for the actor Jeremy Irons who has offended me deeply by choosing to paint his castle pink.



I have a strong concern for the national heritage of these islands and consider this act an outrageous violation. Jeremy Irons has insisted that his intention is to restore ‘as near as possible the original architecture and style’ and that pink is ‘a traditional shade to paint’. Where he got this idea from I have no idea, perhaps he has been referencing Disney movies under the mistaken impression that the Cinderella castle is based on historical fact. A castle should always be battleship grey to present an intimidating sight to any would be attacker and make them cower at the prospect of having to launch an assault. Painting a castle an effeminate colour completely emasculates it and leaves it looking very sorry indeed. An army that beheld this pink castle would fall about laughing and come to the conclusion that the occupier was of an inferior calibre, in this case they would be entirely right. I am aware that the chances of an besieging army arriving in Cork are a tad remote, but when restoring a local monument such as this, it is right and proper to remain true to its original purpose.

I have no idea why a simple thing like arranging a set of eight people to sit on one table for the G.D.L has to turn into a full-scale diplomatic crisis. My theory is that sometimes life can get so dull and monotonous that it sometimes helps to introduce a bit of unnecessary drama into the proceedings. So it is, that we are unable to get Richard onto our table because one of the other girls doesn’t like him. Her reason for this is that he said that she couldn’t be Scottish because she comes from Hong Kong. This conversation took place on a somewhat disastrous evening to celebrate Matt’s birthday. I first suspected that Richard had drunk a bit too much when he attempted to walk out onto a bowling alley in pursuit of an errant ball that had become stuck in the gutter. It had escaped his mind that the surface of the alley was greased to allow faster movement of the ball, and he promptly fell violently on his arse to the great amusement of the assembled company. Later at the meal at Pizza Express he announced to the entire table that the girl next to him had the shits and that the English had never conquered Wales, a rather dubious historical thesis I might add. Such a declaration constituted a bit of a conversational faux pas and I was politely asked to escort him home.

As a consequence of this encounter, the aforementioned girl refuses to sit on the same table with Richard and this information has caused a bit of a schism in our social network. I see no reason for this, Richard is a perfectly pleasant chap when he feels like it. The way the girl went on you would have thought he had the culinary etiquette of Shih Hu, the Chinese emperor famed for beheading a girl from his harem on the eve of the banquet and serving her butchered torso up to his dinner guests. In any event, me and Richard have decided not to attend anyway and feel the funds required for the entrance fee can be better invested in a more down to earth evening in the Horn in Hand or by settling down with a few beers to watch the election. Such an occasion would be free of factional infighting as well as the torture of having to swan about in a dinner jacket.

Upon my last visit to the St Annes Londis to return a video, the Indian behind the counter decided to make an attempt at humour. He called me over saying ‘excuse me zir, you pay 3.98 for the DVD’. I paused and got ready to indignantly defend myself. ‘What do you mean!’ I said, defiant in the knowledge that I had returned the damn thing on time. His crooked teeth broke into a smile, ‘joke’, he said at length. It was hardly comic genius but I laughed and felt glad at this improvement in our relationship. Practical jokes are far more welcome than death stares.

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