The Slimmening

The Slimmening

Man, am I pooped.

Pee Oh Oh Pee I dunno how you spell “E” phonetically Dee.

Here’s what I’ve done since I left high school. If I call it grammar school I’ll sound like a jerk and if I call it secondary school I’m underselling it and seeing as 80% of my imagined readers are ‘Mericans, I went to high school, dig? So here’s what I’ve since I.

–       Ate badly.

–       Not exercised.

–       The same but again.

–       For coming on nine years.


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On First Publication – “Whence Now Discovery?”

On First Publication – “Whence Now Discovery?”

One down…

Until today, I’d failed in achieving any one of my goals as outlined  in the site’s final post of 2012.

Might I draw your attention, then, to my challenge to “get published in the university’s quarterly magazine”. What I didn’t realize when I wrote that was that I may have well as written “get an article published in a physical publication for the first time in my life”, because that’s what I actually meant – I just presumed that would be the quickest option.

Cue success!

Continue reading “On First Publication – “Whence Now Discovery?””

On Getting Lost

You know what adults don’t do? They don’t get lost. Sure, OK, sometimes when driving we’ll take a wrong turn or Google Maps will skip a corner and we’ll end up in the centre of Liverpool but when it comes to getting lost on foot, one of the advantages of not being 5 any more is that it stops happening, same as our noses running for no apparent reason stops happening and our knees getting grazed stops happening. Come with me now as I prove that bit of talking wrong with an example and also, because I took no pictures on my no camera, five images pulled from a Google Images search for “A Lost Man”.

There’s a forest that’s also a park on the outskirts of Coleraine, where I’ve lived for the last month or so, and when I’m walking I like to be away from cars on roads because a) it’s quieter and I can hear my headphones better and b) dog walkers tend to think the same, so it’s Dogapalooza on country roads the world over. Finding somewhere like this about fifteen minutes from the flat was perfect, and I mean perfect – it offers a circuitous path, it’s really fucking green and dogs. Dogs everywhere. The greatest pleasure of he who has no dog is other people’s dogs. Any opportunity to check out what a dog’s up to, how excited he or she is, whether or not they have a thing that’s theirs (like a stick or a ball or whatever), I’m there. It’ll do ’til the day I can afford to live in a property with enough room for Max Bickies to move in.

So, getting back on track, I was walking round the ‘red trail’ (clearly defined so as to avoid confusion with the ‘white trail’ which, frankly, is for guhhly men) when I was met by a pair of paths leading left and right and, despite having asked a shocked man moments earlier for directions, I ended up headed down the one that, well, let’s just say that even though it was right, it was… wrong. Man, I love left/right/wrong-based gags. So anyway, I wind up by this gate – a GATE, right – and decide that it must be part of the natural path running through the woods, so I vault it… so, I clamber over it… OK, fine, so I just about squeeze around to the side of it (hey, fuck you), and dander down this mucky mucky path marked by car tracks and emerge at some sort of hidden mid-forest factory and elect to wander further into the thickening forest because “my sense of direction is leading me back to Red Trail.” Now, you may not know this about me, but I have considerable reservations concerning thick underbrush (scorpions and corpses mainly) and the majority of the sweat about my brow was borne of heat and exercise, yes, but is it safe to say by this stage I was properly upset? Yuh huh it was. We don’t know how to deal with these things. We aren’t trained for getting lost in kinda-big forests kinda-near to where we live. No phone, so little water left, and muck all up my legs.

I spent another ten minutes or so battling the instinct to just precisely reverse my tracks (oh yes, I neglect to mention, this is one of those ‘getting losts’ where really it’s just a case of heading 100% toward uncertainty without ever forgetting how you got there), getting muddier and muddier and madder and madder before swiping at the forest (and making contact with absolutely nothing – actually picture that for me, right now, in your head) in a final physical acceptance of my circumstances. I’m sure the living amongst the greens had a good old laugh at my futile squidgy self.

Not too long after I wound up back at the fork where I had originally made the wrongright choice (as detailed in the preceding paragraphs of words) and decided to take, by way of reward, a shortcut down and across a minor valley I’d earlier noticed. My foot went straight through the trunk of a felled tree that was acting as a walkway and the thinner-than-spaghetti branches of the trees I clasped at, falling backwards, snapped on contact and I wound up really awkwardly sort of tilting towards the ground in a way that was too slow to be painful but plenty slow to look so, so stupid to the dog-walking man who pretended not to see and accelerated slightly away from me.

Hey, so there was! Like two paragraphs ago!

I assumed what I guess could be called a run for the rest of my journey through the park and back to familiar territory for as long I could last. I just didn’t want to be there anymore. Back on the main road I felt the true relief of a child being found after a spell of confusion for the first time since one of those was what I was. My usual one-hour walk was doubled on account of my excursion (INTO MYSTERY!) just because I challenged the primarily adult notion to not be an idiot while first traversing a new area. The lesson – be careful out there, folks. There’s a whole lot of world to get lost (for a while and technically without ever not knowing how to get back to exactly where you were in the first place) in.