Tuesday, November 29, 2005

The other day I admitted to a gay friend and his boyfriend that I have, of late, been downloading and watching lesbian porn. I also admitted to quite enjoying it. While they thought that the idea of watching pneumatic, blonde pornstars go at each others lady bits was kind of a kinky thing for a gay man to do, they didn't seem to be that bothered by the overall concept.

However, the straw that really broke the camels back was when I admitted that I have also been thinking that I would like to try having sex with a woman, just to see what it was like. I made it very clear that if this was to happen I would want it to be pretty dirty and certainly not lurve making. Regardless, this was apparently too much for them to handle. My friend told me that he didn't know if he could accept me as a straight man or even a gay man who had sex with women from time to time. Or even once.

Gayers: am I alone in the lesbian porn thing? Do none of you find a woman's body even slightly arousing? And do any of you ever consider having sex with a woman, just for hell of it?

Discuss.

Monday, November 28, 2005

My housemate, Vix, after having had the bathroom refitted is on something of a house restoration spree. The current project is having the windows and doors sanded down and repainted.

Paul, the guy who is undertaking the job is a friend of Dave, the guy who did the bathroom. Today was his first day.

I've just got home to find the entire house, literally every single surface, COVERED in paint dust. It is EVERYWHERE. The air is actually hazy with the stuff. It turns out that Paul, the complete moron that he is, used a power sander to sand the doors and windows down but didn't cover a single surface with a dust sheet or even open a window.

The long and short of it is that we are going to have to get a professional cleaner in for at least a day to clean the whole place up, which will cost at least one hundred pounds. However, because my housemate is so nice I can't trust her to deal with Paul effectively: i.e. basically tell him that the cost of the cleaner is going to be offset against his fee, which was only three hundred pounds. So I'm having to stay back at the flat with her in the morning so that we can deal with him together.

My personal opinion is that we should just sack him, as my question is if he made this much of a bodge with the sanding, what's he going to be like with painting. And dried paint on floorboards is a whole different matter than dust on surfaces. But Vix is uncomfortable with the idea of sacking him. She thinks it is mean.

I am bristling with anger.

And I'm asthmatic.

So If I don't ever post again, you'll know the reason why.

Friday, November 25, 2005

The other day, on a train journey back to London from a meeting in the Midlands, I got bored and decided to go through my Palm address book and do some tallying up:

I have 38 close friends *

I have 109 good friends **

I have 472 amiable acquaintances ***

I have 7 enemies ****

* These are the people who I would phone immediately if I were to find out that I had a brain tumour.

** These are the people whose death from a brain tumour would make me ineffably sad.

*** These are the people I would hope could recover from a brain tumour.

**** These are the people I would generally hope could recover from a brain tumour, but if they didn't then I wouldn't lose any sleep over it.

Thursday, November 24, 2005

So this email goes around today introducing us all to some recent new recruits. I reached the end of the email and was struck by the last joiner - not only was he awesomely hot, but he also had oodles of professional experience and was clearly really, really clever and very, very funny. Where does this guy sit? I thought to myself. I must date him.

And then I realised I was reading about myself:

unknown

Name: Christopher

Current Job Title and Team: Account Director, XXX

Sits: Opposite J, between A and S, on the third floor

Background:
After studying Fashion in Southampton I began my career in PR as an intern at XXX in 1996 (H was my first boss!) I stayed with the company through its merger with XXX in 1998 and at the end of 2002 I transferred with the company to New York, where I spent the best part of two years. I returned to the UK towards the end of 2004 and since then I have freelanced for a number of small and large London-based consumer PR agencies. I have a broad communications experience from having represented a diverse range of brands - including XXX, XXX, XXX, XXX, XXX, XXX, the XXX and XXX.

Likes:
  1. Notes and lists
  2. Logic
  3. Kindness
  4. Brushing his teeth
  5. The European Union
  6. The O.C.
  7. Right-angles
  8. Walks along the beach
  9. Vintage T-shirts
  10. Men who aren't afraid to cry
  11. Hilary Clinton
  12. Winning the Lottery
Dislikes:
  1. Ignorance
  2. Meanness
  3. Tardiness
  4. Scientology
  5. Losing stuff
  6. Fatalists
  7. Bad personal hygiene
  8. Junkie-rockers
  9. Crap show tunes
  10. Tom Cruise
  11. Littlejohn (columnist in The Sun)
  12. Not winning the Lottery
Yeah. You wanna make out with me right now, dontcha?

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

This morning I was thinking, God! This work thing is taking up all my creative focus! I can't blog! And then this evening I thought, God! I should blog about how work is taking up all my creative focus!

I am coming to the end of my fourth week at work and things are going swimmingly. For a long, long time I have been forced to work with crack-whores and utter nincompoops, most of them neurotic women as well as the odd (being the operative word) gay man. In all cases they have sapped all my confidence and stunted my creativity.

But no more. All of my board directors, bar one, are straight men (believe me when I say that in PR this makes all the difference) and my immediate boss is just the most coolest, chilled-outest gurl ever, ever. And everyone is absolutely cool with me taking the lead and no one second guesses any of my decisions.

*knocks on wood*

Something else. A couple of weeks ago my line board director told me that there is no point in attempting to pursue a work / life balance, because in our line of work it's just not possible. That might seem absurd / obvious depending on your own line of work or point of view, but this has been a revelation to me. I know it's still early days but I'm just not getting in a state about doing long hours - either coming in early or going home late.

And then there are the perks. You already know that I am having to take my motorbike test soon (January!!!!) and that I get to ride any of the bikes whenever I want. But what you don't know (and what I didn't know until a few days ago) was that I get to drive this whenever I want too:



Isn't it beautiful?

Yes sir. Things are pretty good right now.

Monday, November 21, 2005

It has just dawned on me that the colours that I purchased the pashminas in are exactly the same colours as the title of my blog!

Which, of course, means absolutely nothing.

Saturday, November 19, 2005

McConaughey Tops Sexiest Man Alive List.

What does it say about me that when I first read that title on the IMDb homepage my sub-conscious skipped the last word?

Or perhaps the question should be: what does it say about Matthew McConaughey that he made my sub-conscious do that?

I'm a bit concerned that I'm becoming a little too gay. Last weekend in Paris I bought two pashminas. My purchasing rationale was that viewed objectively pashminas are only large rectangles of fabric and with no inherent characteristics that make them "feminine".

And this would be true, except that the two pashminas I purchased are lilac and turquoise.

That said, there is no reason why a confident man cannot wear those colours. I just made sure I wore the pashminas in the normal man-scarf manner: i.e. wrapped around the neck in a bunch and not draped around the shoulders.

At least that was until Wednesday when I draped the lilac one around my shoulders because I was cold.

But if you think all of that is bad enough, then consider this:

Pashminas are so 2003.

Something sinister is afoot.

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

This afternoon, during a random conversation about Star Wars with my board director, I said something which made him laugh so hard that he choked on his sushi:

"Sure Jar Jar Binks was annoying. But think about how irritating R2-D2 must have been to parents watching the original Star Wars movie back in the 1970s. Viewed objectively, R2-D2 is like a dwarf holding a Simon."

While he did finally recover, I couldn't help but wonder: is it bad form to inadvertantly kill your boss with humour?

Monday, November 14, 2005

Merde!

As you know, this last weekend one of my best friends, Helen ...

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... and I ...

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...went to Paris ...

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.

Over supper at Kong, Helen, with practically no warning, announces to me that she hates the Eiffel Tower. "It's ugly," she tells me. "It's like a giant radio transmitter."

The fact that the Eiffel Tower, amongst other things, actually is a giant radio transmitter is by-the-by. I almost choked on my food. It was kind of like the time that another of my best friends, Jemma, told me that not only did she own Margaret Thatcher's autobiography, but had she been of legal age in the 70s, she probably would have voted for Thatch as well.

(Hi Jemma!)

Once I had accepted my repulsion over the fact that I had been friends with someone who hated the Eiffel Tower for quite so long, I tried to explain to Helen why not only was she very wrong but that she was also, very probably, dead inside. Hating the Eiffel Tower, to me at least, is like hating puppies.

"The Eiffel Tower is a testament to the human spirit. It signifies what we can achieve when we focus on solidarity, on working together," I passionately ranted at her. "For that reason not only is it a French symbol, but an international symbol. It gives us hope. It reminds us of what we can do when we focus. It is functional. It is beautiful. Remember, that it was supposed to exist as a temporary feature for the Paris Expo, yet over a hundred years after it was built it still dominates the Parisian skyline, strong and proud. At night, on the hour, every hour, for five minutes, it sparkles like a hyperactive Christmas tree ...

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"... and all of the time a searchlight penetrates the night sky ...

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[Aside - photos taken from the window of our hotel room! Do you have any idea how much I've always wanted a hotel room with a view of the Eiffel Tower?]

"In fact there is only one problem with the Eiffel Tower. The view of Paris, as seen from it, is missing one essential feature: the Eiffel Tower."

Finally I summarised: "The Eiffel Tower, after all is said and done, is a quite outstanding erection."

The next day I made her walk down the Parc du Champ de Mars so that she could take in its full glory.

This was her reaction:

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Does anyone know whether or not I can legally emancipate a best friend?

Friday, November 11, 2005

I'm off to Paris for the weekend today with my friend, Helen. When we get there we're meeting up with someone else I know and her friend and then the quatre of us are going hors sur la ville! (out on the town.)

We're, like, totally gonna have a riot!

Boom-boom!

See what I did there? Paris? Riot = fun / street violence? Boom-boom = punchline / petrol-bomb exploding? Yes, I know but it's funny!

Oh just forget it.

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

One of the only reasons I would like to be extremely famous is so that I get asked to do those celeb Q&A thingys.

Fortunately I am aready EXTREMELY famous on this here blog of mine, which means that I get to do the Evening Standard magazine's Q&A:

Christopher: My London
The self-congratulated PR lounge-luvvie is a Clapham townie who would get taxis everywhere if only he could afford to.

Where do you live?
Clapham. I love it here - Abbeville Road is just around the corner with all it's restaurants, cosy pubs and high contingent of DILF's, the Common which is great in the summer and two rubbish but good gay bars on the high street.

How long have you lived there?
About a year and a half. Prior to living in Clapham I had always lived north of the river, so this is all pretty new to me. I am surprised that "south of the river" is not as pikey as I have always been it is.

What was the last play you saw in London and did you enjoy it?
Whose Life Is It Anyway. It starred Kim Cattrall as a hospitalised woman paralysed from the neck down as the result of a car accident. The play is a dark comedy telling the tale of how Cattrall's character tries to obtain a Habeas Corpus so that she can go home and commit suicide. Cattrall played the part pitch-perfect, with just the right amount of sadness and good-humour. I thought it was tres bon.

What have been your most memorable London meals?
Long Sunday lunches in cosy pubs with good wine and good friends. I also love eating at Criterion in Piccadilly Circus. Even though it's a Marco Pierre White restaurant it's comparatively inexpensive, so every now and then I can afford to eat there with a friend. It's also very opulent with the most incredible, gold, mosaic covering the whole ceiling.

What do you miss most when you're away from London?
Aside from my urban family, the incredible views: Parliament Hill on Hampstead Heath, Primrose Hill and practically any of the views from any of the bridges which stretch across the Thames (especially the Waterloo Bridge.)

What is your life philosophy?
Think big and be brave.

What items are in your winter wardrobe?
Lots and lots of very colourful, very long scarves, a bunch of thick, warm socks and a black, heavy-knit, Nehru-collared, three-quarter length coat from All Saints. It's all about the warmth, especially as this winter is supposed to be one of the coldest on record.

Which aftershave do you wear?
For the last eight years I have worn Sander for Men by Jil Sander. It's the fragrance which most of my friends would associate with me. But I always like to have one or two others on the go as well. At the moment they are Rhubarb Sherbet by Comme des Garcons and John Varvatos by John Varvatos.

What are your current projects?
Being good in my job. Finding a nice man to settle down with. Saving enough money for my holiday in Thailand.

What were the last books you bought?
Brokeback Mountain by Annie Proulx and Lunar Park by Brett Easton-Ellis. These days I almost always buy my books from Amazon. I feel like I'm missing out on the bookshop experience.

What is in your secret address book?
Some very valuable mobile and home phone numbers, including a national newspaper gossip columnist, an American supermodel and an extremely famous British actor.

What is your earliest London memory?
Visiting the Whispering Gallery up in the dome of St. Paul's Cathedral when I was nine years-old. It's very, very high up and I had to crawl on the floor of the balcony because I was so scared of falling over the edge.

What advice would you give to a tourist?
In a thunderstorm don't do what two Japanese tourists did a couple of years back - stand under a tree . You get electrocuted and die. In fact this is not only dangerous in London, but pretty much anywhere else in the world when there is a thunderstorm.

What do you listen to on your iPod as you travel around London?
In a perfect world it would be a bracing winter morning and I would be walking in the opposite direction to the throng, in the middle of the city, as Carly Simon lets rip on the opening chords of Let The River Run.

What would you do if you were Mayor for the day?
I would extend the Congestion Charge to every square millimeter of road within the M25 and then pump all the revenue into the Tube so that it could, you know, work properly from time to time.

Where were the last three places you went on holiday?
Rome with my Mum, then Paris to see a friend and before that South Beach in Miami to see my friend, Zach.

What was the last album you downloaded?
The Back Room by The Editors.

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

As you all know, my housemate, Vix, is a total pushover a rare British flower of exquisite kindness, polite manners and overall gentility.

Last night we had a discussion about why I leave my vitamins on the kitchen counter as opposed to putting them away in the cupboard. I explained to Vix that if they are hidden in the cupboard I will inevitably forget to take them. That's why I leave them out. And that's why it annoys the crap out of me if she puts them away (which she does ... all the time!)

Vix then proceeded to explain to me that the reason that she puts them away is because my vitamins are ugly and spoil the overall look and feel of the pretty kitchen (apparently our kitchen is listed and changes have to be approved by the Duchy of Clapham.) In particular she pointed out that they are currently ruining the design aesthetics of the Phillipe Stark lemon squeezer:

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Well, ok ... she has a point. That juxtaposition is slightly jarring.

But hey! Better that than yours-truly at 60-years-old, all creaky-jointed and depressed because in my youth I kept forgetting to take my Cod Liver Oil capsules and Vitamin C tablets with added Zinc.

This morning I sleepily entered the kitchen to discover this somewhat unsubtle message scrawled on the kitchen blackboard:

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The next time her boyfriend, Ben, stays over I'm going to sneak into her room when they're asleep and put her hand into some warm water. Because everyone knows that it totally makes you pee the bed. And then the next morning Ben will wake up, see that she's a bedwetter and that is awesome!

Perhaps it's time for me to live by myself?

Monday, November 07, 2005

Last week I watched the last ever episode of Six Feet Under.

[spoilers ahead]

I have been totally addicted to the show ever since I saw the first episode back in 2001. Everything, everything about it is so rich: from the intimate depictions of the moments before someone's death, to the title sequence, to the intricate and specific characterisations. It's so rare to watch a TV show where you care about each of the characters absolutely the same amount.

The last five minutes of the final episode were among the most moving and lasting five minutes of TV I've ever watched. Those of you who have seen the ending will know that it features clips of Clare driving through the desert, interspersed with vignettes of each of the main characters lives and their ultimate demises - all set to an appropriately epic song called Breath Me sung by Sia.

One of the reasons that this segment was so affecting for me was because it showed the young Clare next to her increasingly elder-self and finally as an old woman with cataracts and white hair, literally about to die. Again, as anyone who has watched Six Feet Under will know, whenever someone dies the screen fades to white and their name and their significant dates appear for just a moment.

Seeing those dates for each of the characters that, over the past four years, I have grown very attached to and fond of was a really moving experience ... for the most part because it served to remind me that the only certain thing about life is death. Now I am not a fatalist. I don't believe that there is some mystical guiding force behind my actions or my life in general. I know that I am absolutely in control of a great deal of my life and that the remainder is subject to a series of random coincidences and events.

But, again, the one absolute certainty is death. There are no sketchy statistics regarding that. 100% of everyone and everything will die some day.

I write this as a 33-year-old man who was born at 4.20am on Wednesday, September 27, 1972. And as I write this there is a point in the future which will mark the moment that I will die.

That moment is 7.32pm on Sunday, March 17, 2058.

Ok, it probably isn't. But when you think about your life in such literal terms, if only for a moment, it has the effect of bringing everything into focus. It doesn't even have to be a depressing thought. It's just black and white. It reminds you of how absolutely irrefutable and definite death is and it makes everything else seem so important. Even the small things.

It makes me want to squeeze as much into my life as possible.

And when did TV get so good?

Sunday, November 06, 2005

I HATE YOU, TOM CRUISE!!!

*waves fist*

From IMDb:

Tom Cruise is terrifying film-makers on the set of Mission: Impossible III, by insisting on carrying out his own death-defying stunts. The superstar actor has refused to allow a stunt double to take on the dangerous high falls necessary for his part as secret agent Ethan Hunt in the sequel - and his willingness to push himself to the limit even scares legendary stunt coordinator Vic Armstrong, who is working on the film with him. Armstrong tells Total Film magazine "He did a 70 foot fall for us last week. He's amazing. He did about seven takes. It absolutely terrifies me - I can see the headlines! What a way to finish a career."

Most of you already know this, but I hate Tom Cruise SOOOOOOOOO much. Seriously, his current mid-life crisis thing is really nauseating. It's like he thinks that performing his own stunts will convince me, personally, that he's straight [as an aside, I will admit to finding the whole Katie Holmes pregnancy debacle most vexing. Or at least I did until someone reminded me of that miraculous turkey basting device.]

Anyhoo, if I was the stunt coordinator on Mission: Impossible III I would be all like, "So you wanna jump that 1,000 foot-wide precipice on a BMX? Sure! Knock yourself out." And then , under my breath, "Die! Die!"*

Of course, you know that if I ever had to work with him on a high-falutin' PR project I'd be all like, "Tom! It's so nice to meet you. Can I get you a cup of tea?

And then, under my breath, "Please touch my face!"

*If, at some point in the next few weeks, Tom Cruise dies performing a 1,000 foot jump on a BMX for Mission: Impossible III, I will feel really, really bad. For five minutes and then I'll probably get over it.

Friday, November 04, 2005

Ten things that happened to me this week ...

  1. I have been incredibly inspired by my new board director (after four days of him scaring the crap out of me)
  2. I worked alongside people I last worked alongside eight years ago
  3. I attended a party where George Clooney was present
  4. I learned that an inverted fork provides a better ride (!)
  5. I went to two tres, tres expensive restaurants for lunch
  6. I got to buy expensive desk furniture
  7. I was given a really cool pair of black leather biker boots
  8. I was twice told I am much nicer than my predecessor (although it should be noted that my predecessor was sacked for embezzlement)
  9. I was told by my first ever boss (who, after nine years, is my boss again) that I am like a completely different person
  10. I had sex five times with the same person (and I still really like him!)

Thursday, November 03, 2005

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

So now that I'm a motorbike petrolhead, does that mean that I get to date guys like these?

Pic1

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