That Time I Drunkenly Got Locked Out.

How many times have I, or will I in the future start a blog entry by describing how dazed, confused and hungover I am?

Well here’s another one.

Only this time, instead of being awoken by the suns optimistic shine to start my hangover, I woke up to my friend Jodie trying to Facetime me.

Fully clothed, on top of my duvet with no recollection as to how the fuck I even got home. There was a mop bucket next to my bed and a pint of water on my bedside drawer, I’m not forward thinking enough to collect these things so clearly one of my house mates had to rescue me from myself. All of this and it was only three in the fucking morning.

Once upon a time, I used to pride myself on being able to remember all the events of a night out in spite of how much alcohol I consumed. I was the wise one, the one who told the stories in which others had forgot.

Over time, I’ve had the odd moment in which a few things had slipped, and not before long those ‘few things’ extended to a good hour or two of absence in memory.

Last night, I remember pre-drinking, singing along to Blink 182, and having a duet to Neck Deep, the taxi arriving and that’s it. Nothing until 3am. Apparently I crashed and stumbled home a mess at midnight and was later found in my bath tub. Here is some unfortunate proof.

Now, this seems bad, and let’s face it….It is. But the bright side? I can’t remember the horror stories of how I even got home. What I do know is however…I lost my fucking iPod that night.

However the fact I got home is a miracle in its own right, as I’m going to tell you of a story that could have had a bit more of a shit ending….

For this ‘blast from the past’ we don’t actually go too far back…

Our story takes us to just last year, 2015.

Our House mate Roxanne had moved house, meaning that my tiny box room that I had been occupying for the last six months was to be abandoned for her room. Moving the stuff over, we realised that we now had a spare room, which me and Andrew dubbed as our ‘party room’.

So of course, there’d be no point in a party room without having a few drinks in it. So we invited Alan round for a few. Laughs were shared, stories were exchanged and songs were sung out of tune. It was a good debut for the room.

Now, the problem with last minute shindigs and copious drinking at such events is that you run out of alcohol. For some this is a sign to stop, for us however it was a sign to just go down town instead.

Losing my way from the gang as per, I decided to drink solo at the local dive bars, I knock back a few shots, try a cider I didn’t like and lost my spirit and decided to go home.

Given the title of this, we won’t call it a plot twist but the main arch of our story was then discovered.

I had left my keys at home.

Ahhhhhhh, fuck.

Now, at this point I was incredibly drunk, my phone battery was dying fast. I could’ve just waited on my front porch, but that would attract attention from the weirdos that lived on my street, so that was out.

Our next plan of action was to just find a good bench in a park to relax and maybe crash out on. Again, the streets of Plymouth are mean, and attracting unwanted attention was not in my interests. I then came to a conclusion that my drunk, poisoned brain considered “A good move”.

In hindsight it was not.

See, my porch, a bench, a park. All places in which the public and any bad character could come across, come across a large, afro donning, drunk guy and think “Let’s mug that idiot”.

Do you know a place that statistically speaking wouldn’t be littered with shady characters?

The woods.

Not just any woods, the largest woods, and nature reserve that Plymouth could offer, Saltram.

Already it was a long walk from town to Saltram, so I blissfully started my journey, all forty minutes of it, not during one step did I think “This is a bad idea”. My Ipod reassuring me to keep going.

I eventually made it to the long, dark pathway entering the abyss, and without second thought I went straight in. Even on a summers day this pathway is usually empty minus the odd cyclist or dog walker every so often, so you can imagine how dead it’d be at three in the morning.

Getting deeper into the woods, the path splits into two.

The left would go deeper into the woods, and near a giant lake.

The right would take us into a giant open field which housed a manor.

Figuring that stumbling drunk to some manor would probably end up turning into a Beauty and the Beast situation, I decided to go left, I figured a lakeside view would be pretty this time of night.

And so I walked, blissfully unaware of how stupid this decision was. My Ipod ran out of battery so I was left with the sound of silence and my own footsteps, it was bizarrely a very tranquil experience.

I made it to the ‘lake’ (I quote lake because it’s way too fucking big to be a lake, but I wouldn’t know what else to call it).

Just by said lake was a steep hill, and on top some sort of stone placement in which me and Dan used to call “The Temple” as kids. As a result we’ll call it that now.

I somehow managed to traverse this hill and sit next to The temple. With a good view of a good chunk of the city. I watched the odd car go by in the distance as if they were little fireflies. Nothing but silence, barring the gentle sound of a breeze here and there.

Now going inside The Temple, I lie down next to the stone work on a concrete slab, it was bizarrely comfortable. It was a strange thought in the grand scheme of things, all the cars and people passing by with a view of Saltram in the distance had no clue there was some drunk mid-twenties moron relaxing in the depths.

The next thing I know, I awaken to a flock of birds singing, chirping and presumably mocking me. “Ohhhhhh this was a bad idea” I say to myself as the 6am sky lightens to a dark blue.

This was a dumb idea.

I’ve had a lot of dumb ideas, but this was certainly a top percentage dumb idea moment.

I bring myself to my feet and peer out of the temple, the odd ‘firefly’ in which I had been so fixated on mere hours before were now a lot more frequent for the morning rush to work. Again, this was a dumb idea.

I walk down the steep hill, taking caution with each step. It was then when a dog walker came into my sights.

Oh for fuck’s sake”.

For the first time in my life I had came across a stranger in the woods and felt empathy. I was probably the fucking dodgy one in this situation. This chap just wants to take his Husky for a walk, and now he’s witnessing some twat come from the temple on the hill, slowly approaching down.

Just don’t make eye contact”

I think to myself.

Just go a complete separate way and he won’t think you’re a murderer” I reason to myself.

Problem is, my mind is now so transfixed on not looking like a murderer that I forget about my cautious footing on the dew soaked hill.

It only took one false step on a loose patch of grass and I was gone. My legs sweeping under me as my vision is forced to the sky, a thunderous thud as my back crashes into the hill.

Uhhhhhhhhhhhh” I let out a mundane moan, obviously now catching the dog walkers attention. If I was in his eyes a murderer, I was a tragic one. I think I even slid down the hill a fair bit in my crash landing. Hurrying myself back to my feet, I leave the area. Quickly.

Now it was just a case of walking home. Usually I could at least browse Facebook, or listen to my music, but both iPhone and Ipod had died in this journey so I was very much left to my own devices. I got some snacks from a nearby petrol station to keep me sane.

An hour later I had finally made it home, I was ready to be reunited with my bed.

Then it hit me, the reason I had been in the woods in the first place.

I had no fucking keys.

Knocking on the door proved to be a thankless task, and it was getting cold. So I figured at this time Mcdonalds would be open.

Realising I was still a little drunk upon entering, I try my best to act sober. Which resulted in me having a fifteen minute chat to the cashier about Captain America.

I order my Mcmuffin and cup of tea. Go into the corner where I can be alone with my food and shame.

From the first sip my tongue felt like it had just set foot upon the sun itself. A thousand fires had scorched the roof of my mouth, this tea was obviously made from hell itself. My morning wasn’t improving.

I ate my Mcmuffin in silence, looking at all the happy, hangover free people with a hint of envy in my eyes, mud still stained on my back from the earlier slip. It was all in all a bananas moment.

After my Mcmuffin, I come to the inevitable conclusion that my tea will literally never, ever cool down so I just left it and returned home.

Again, knocking on the door seemed a pointless endeavour so I had a brainwave moment.

I’d merely jump over the back wall.

I stroll to the back alley, and get to the sealed back door to the garden. Wedged shut from where I once upon a kicked it back into place in an attempt to fix it. Which let’s face it, judging from this moment worked a bloody peach.

I look down the alley and see one of those wheelie things that postmen use for their big deliveries, why there was on in a Plymouth alley I will not understand, but I was not arguing this.

The best thing I could get upon Googling

The best thing I could get upon Googling “Wheelie Delivery Thing”.

I wheel my makeshift ladder to the back gate, and delicately begin to climb. At this point it feels like a simple two foot device has hoisted me seventy feet in the air.

I grasp onto my back wall and hoist myself up, knocking off a lot of tiling in the process.

Without any grace or charm I slump my body over the wall, make pleasantries with a nearby cat (which promptly left) and fall into my own back yard.

The back door was fucking locked.

Now, a few months prior to this moment I had a bit of a DIY stint in me and wanted to create a backyard sofa. Ideally made from pallet wood. As such, whilst drunk on previous night outs I had taken pieces of pallet wood and thrown them into my back yard until I had enough pieces of pallet wood to build a decent sofa.

There was, and still to this very moment remains one piece of pallet wood in my back yard.

I pick it up, and drag it pathetically to the corner of the back yard, wedging it into the corner of the stairs to my back door, thus creating a decent make shift bed.

I lay down, at what is now probably 9am in my back yard on a piece of pallet wood, wondering where it all went wrong, the only comfort was the fact that this ‘bed’ I made was actually pretty comfy in its own right.

Just as I found solace in this, it started to rain.

But fear not, I had another million dollar idea.

I climbed over my back wall, again.

Used the wheelie delivery thing as a ladder down to the back alley.

And took the ten minute walk back into down.

Went into Wilko, a little bit drunk.

And bought a fucking duvet.

I then proceeded to repeat the process of getting into my back yard. Only this time, armed with a duvet, which I then used with my pallet bed.

As if that was my life now.

Luckily, it wasn’t long until I got back into my house, and subsequent actual bed.

But hey, fuck it. I got a duvet out of it, so as far as hangovers go it wasn’t that bad, I guess.

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That Time We Went Ghost Hunting.

I wake up, the world is still spinning, the room has empty vodka and rum bottles scattered across the floor, the fake blood setting under my nails for the next four days, face full of smudged eyeliner, and an ever present desire to just stop existing for a day or two.

Halloween has turned into that yearly event in which both my liver and my wallet hold hands and think “How are we going to make it through this?”. A week long event of house parties, trudging down town, and drinking enough alcohol to satisfy Lichtenstein as a whole.

And I find this perplexing to a degree because Halloween has already undergone a drastic evolution, at least with me.

As a child it was the all about the silly costumes, the trick or treating and the weeks supply of sweets, and an apple to get through, the Halloween parties were filled with apple bobbing and listening to the Monster Mash.

As a young teenager you get a bit more of a sense of adventure with such a time of year. Too young to make a night out happen, and too old to appreciate apple bobbing, you’re forced to think outside the box and go ghost hunting or some shit like that.

Then as an adult you lose that sense of horror and wonder and just replace it with alcohol, or at least heavily incorporate alcohol into proceedings, instead of apple bobbing you have….apple cocktails? Instead of trick or treating you get a round of shot roulette and hope to god you don’t get the black sambuca. And instead of analysing the sheer amount of sweets you have on your bed, you’re instead throwing away your bedsheets because of the blue dye stained from the Smurf you bought home last night.

This is the reality in which I now apparently live in, maybe in a few years time Halloween to me will be watching my future son/daughter don their superhero outfit for the first time, and stealing their sweets when they go to bed. Until that day however I’m fine with replacing a packet of Haribo Starmix with a Woo Woo Cocktail.

However, going back to the days in which drinking wouldn’t diminish me as a human being, I was in that ‘Let’s be adventurous this Halloween’ stage.

Now, it’s time for a bit of Plymouth folklore.

In one of the corners of Plymouth lies Radford Woods, a serene little retreat with quite a beautiful lake next to what I can only describe as a pint sized castle.

Once upon a time, 19th century time, the occupants of this castle had a daughter, who loved some bloke who either lived in the woods, or hung around in the woods a lot. Either way, she probably should’ve just got a hobby instead of pining after woodsmen.

Forbidden from seeing her true love, she apparently decided to make a Disney movie out of it, break out of the castle, take a boat and sail to him.

Not quite perfecting a calm lake and a rowing boat, she capsized the boat and died, and to this day she haunts the woods looking for her lost love. Known commonly as The White Lady.

Also, for some fucking reason she’s a swan in the daytime.

Our story takes us to 2004.

Myself and Nathan. Who I share a YouTube gaming channel with (Check us playing horror games by clicking this link) now routinely ‘investigate’ these woods but find pretty much nothing each time.

2004 however we were incredibly close to finding much, much more.

We had at this point in school all heard the rumours, and all been into Radford woods, but only in the day time.

Given it was Halloween we decided it’d be the absolute perfect time to go into the woods under the moonlight.

We all met up at about 9pm. Which was late for a bunch of fourteen year olds I guess, and especially late for said fourteen year olds to be swanning around in some creepy woods.

Myself, Nathan, Luke, Mike and James were set. All with our little flash lights, and Nathan taking the cautionary approach by taking an actual steel fucking pipe as if it were the starting weapon of our own personal horror game.

How Nathan saw the night going, apparently.

How Nathan saw the night going, apparently.

Things were creepy for a bit, but mostly it was a case of us just minding our footing and making sure we didn’t trip over any rocks or loose tree branches.

Joking and pretending we’ve seen ‘things’ we lap the woods a little bit to find a whole load of nothing.

Not wanting to end this trip of a disappointing note we decided to take drastic measures.

Now the pint sized castle, was completely sealed. Boarded up with steel with no means to wedging over. However, we figured we could at least take a peek by looking through a window over a ledge.

It was quite treacherous to a degree, to get to this window we’d had to hop over a wall, hug said wall from the other side for a few feet just to get a glimpse through a fucking window that was barred up.

Nonetheless we gave it a go. Shining our flash light through the windows we still couldn’t particularly see. Luke, clutching the straws of optimism tried to move the bars themselves.

And it worked.

The bars hoisted upwards giving us access to the window, we all looked at each other, huddled on our little ledge and pondered on whether or not it was a good idea to go in.

Throwing caution to the wind we thought fuck it, and went inside. Teamwork becoming the essence as I held up the bars as the rest of the crew went in, Luke and Mike then held up the bars from the inside as I squeezed past them. “Mind the toilet” Luke said.

Toilet?” I questioned, confused and wondering if I heard correctly. But sailing so, my foot nearly went inside an old, thankfully empty, dried out toilet.

The floors creaked with each timid step, every creak sounding like it could possibly be it’s last until it gave way.

We moved into the next room. A large square one, completely empty minus a table on the far side, and……..An Action-Man flash light on the floor.

Which I fucking shit you not, was still lit.

Haha, what the fuck? I completely forgot Action-Man even existed!” I exclaim whilst going to pick up the flash light, in true horror movie style it died just before I went to touch it.

In hindsight, why none of us were horrified, or at least a bit dubious on the fact that the flash light was still on is beyond me.

The table in question has a load of burned out tea lights on it, again for some stupid reason we thought absolutely nothing about it.

Just under the table for some reason was a shit load of barbed wire all bunched together.

To me, horror is best left to the imagination. When playing a game or watching a movie, the true fear lies in wondering just what is round the corner. What’s lurking in the darkness?

The amount of times I’ve been relatively creeped out during a horror movie, only to be let down by the big monster reveal is phenomenal. Especially with whatever the fuck that stupid prick in Insidious was meant to be.

With that said, the horror elements you can appreciate in film and gaming culture become a lot more scary when you’re the protagonist of a real life would be horror, and as predicted the minds start playing tricks on you. I was constantly questioning myself on what I saw in the corner. Then I was for some reason adding hypothetical situations to the mix.

Okay, so what do you guys think would be scarier, if we just come across some dead bloke, a bloke who’s alive and acknowledges us in whatever way, ORRRR a bloke who’s alive, but just completely oblivious to us, and is just staring catatonically into space”

I had already decided that option three would freak me out the most as I then started to look out for this fictional thousand yard stare man.

Holding onto the walls, being extra careful with our footing we discovered a spiral staircase. James and Mike decided that they didn’t want to risk going upstairs, Nathan decided to take watch for some reason, leaving Luke and I to check out the upper part.

It was a giant, huge, empty room. The floor felt as if it would collapse at any second, and just at the end of it, attached to a wall was a life jacket, Which let’s face it would’ve been quite handy for The White Lady. Live and Learn I guess.

Treading carefully on the soon collapsing floor, our hearts simultaneously go into a state of overdrive as the overpowering sound of bells chimed heavily all around us.

WHAT THE FUCK?”

At this point I doubt anybody in the history of the world had run down a set of spiral stairs quicker than Luke and myself. We didn’t even question what was going on, just bolted.

We were greeted with a hysterical Mike, who had somehow found an old school fire bell system, in which you rotate a crank and it sets a load of bells off. I’d have probably appreciated such a little gizmo if I wasn’t at the time close to cardiac arrest.

Deciding enough was simply enough we left the castle.

Repeating the process of our break in, only in reverse we returned to the woods, this time however a Police car was present. “Oh fuck”

Hi lads, what’re you up to?” the policeman enquired sticking his head out the window.

Oh, we’re ghost hunting!” I blurted out trying to remain cool and poised.

Hahaha, alright then stay safe!” he replied. All in all it was quite a pleasant encounter but we suspected that they were onto us.

We then heard dogs barking, and for some reason we assumed they had set police dogs onto us (I’ve no idea why) so we sat near a bunch of rocks in the dockyard for like, fifteen minutes.

Deciding the coast was clear, we all head off. James had pretty much run off into the night, Luke and Nathan wanted to explore more, so myself and Mike just pottered by the lakeside.

Minutes later, Luke and Nath ran back in a panic claiming that they had saw some sort of white smoke. The closest sign we’d had gotten to a ghost that night, and we bailed, left, and went home

Fun fact though? A few months later in the local paper, it had turned out that our pint sized castle, was actually being used as a drug den, and they had found like £500,000 worth of cocaine inside.

So you know, there’s one fucking giant bullet dodged right there.

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That Time I Got Lost Because Of A Selfie.

30/05/16

I’m not going to sit here and bullshit you by saying that I make the smartest of decisions 100% of the time. In fact on the contrary you could say that it would be surprising to a lot of people if I turned around one day and made a well thought through sensible decision.

Saturday evening (28/05/16) was not one of those days in which a smart decision was made.

Before I tell you a tale of hardship however, let me send you back in time to 2013.

I had purchased two rats from Pets at Home. ‘Science’ and ‘Marceline’ were their respective names. That day I had learned a valuable lesson that you should pretty much not bother buying animals from Pets at Home because they’re essentially neglected from the moment they’re born to the moment they’re purchased, thus they pretty much freak out when anyone approaches.

Marceline was a timid little thing and spent the majority of her time hiding, Science on the other hand was the living embodiment of Satan in a rat, making sounds I have never heard….Quite frankly any animal make, along with drawing blood more times I can count I decided to give her up for adoption to somebody that could give her the patience that I couldn’t.

A quick search on Gumtree (the first time using the site since the whole ‘grooming’ situation. Read About That Little Moment of Joy Here. ) led me to finding someone who was up for the task, in addition to this I got two adorable baby rats in return (Later named ‘Chi and Lychee’).

The only problem however was this girl lived in Callington. A place I had at this point never heard of in my entire life.

This Joyous Place.

This Joyous Place.

Regardless, I travelled by bus for an hour, with an ever growing angry demon rat in my bag, I met the girl, gave away said rat and two baby rat would be coming back with me. There was just one problem.

The entire town, seemingly just had one bus stop.

Of course, I walk past the bus stop I came into town on, assuming that the other side of the road would be the ‘outer’ bus stop, bus alas there was no alternative bus stop. I walk around looking for a bus stop on the correct side of road. This leads me to a long road with barely a lamp post in sight. (This is winter time so it’s dark at like, 5pm).

On my lost travels, I come across three girls that could have been no older than eleven at the time. I shit you not, this is the jist of the conversation.

Girl one: “Excuse me!”

Me: Yeah?

Girl two: Oh my godddd, Leah don’t!”

Girl one: Can my friend have a piggy back?

Me: What?….No.

Girl one and three: Awww

Me: Anyway, can you gimme a hand? I’ve no clue where to get the bus to Plymouth from.

They lead me back to the very same bus stop in which I arrived at as they made their way, I for some reason don’t bother telling them that this is the wrong bus stop. They go on their way, presumably asking more men in their early twenties for piggy backs.

I set off again looking for the correct bus stop.

A fair few minutes pass, maybe ten to fifteen and I come across the same girls.

Oh! It’s you again! Why’re you not at the bus stop? The bus is due!”

Oh, that’s the bus stop I came in from, I need the bus going to Plymouth”

Yeah, we know. The bus turns around there”

………..Oh”.

Feeling stupid, I head back to the same bus stop, and notice that the bus from and to Plymouth is due in about ten minutes. Instead of staying put, I decide on going to the co-op quickly to get myself a drink for the hour journey home.

Leaving the shop, I realise the bus is turning down and looking to abandon my bus stop. “Fucking hell”.

In a beautiful plot twist, the exact same group of girls spotted me in the distance and flagged the bus down for me.

This is the one going to Plymouth!!!” one excitedly shrieked frantically signalling for me to get on.

Three times I encounter them, and three times they saved me from getting lost in Callington, in hindsight I probably owe them that piggy back.

With the baby rats still in my bag for this entire ordeal, I vow to never return.

PRESENT DAY.

It’s now a Saturday evening, probably about ten to seven. I’m wearing my Green Kiwi tee-shirt.

 A fun tidbit of trivia is that through every one of my travelling ordeals I was wearing the very same shirt. (Blog about that coming soon, I guess)

Hell, the last time I wore it prior to that day was when I endured a four hour coach journey with no Ipod, a phone without data, no company and to top this off my bottle of rum smashed in my rucksack.

I was convinced this kiwi tee was cursed so I legitimately took it off.

Other than waiting at the wrong bus stop for five minutes, the bus journey was hassle free, a lot of weird smelling people, but I did have to take into consideration the fact that I was just visiting Cornwall, these people probably lived there so that would explain the odd smells.

I get off the bus, the same cruel bus stop from nearly three years prior greeted me, even the sunsets rays bouncing off the streets could not lift my disdain for the memories of stupidity.

Instead of calling the person I was meant to meet, I decided to take a quick gander round the area, after all, Cornwall is one of those places that’s utterly fucking awful in the dreariness of winter, but quite beautiful on a quiet summers evening. After a while I decide to ring up for directions on where I was actually going.

Okay, just follow the road, you’ll find a Tesco. Ring me when you’re outside of it”

OK! Lates”

My path was set, and it was a relatively easy one. A brief ten minute walk up a gentle slope, I see the large font of Tesco in the distance. I had 8% battery left on my phone, Tesco was no more than two minutes away, the sun was slowly setting, leaving a beautiful pink sky behind my steps.

I figure it’s as good a time as ever to let the natural light act as my filter and take a quick selfie.

I pose, ignoring the confused gazes of the bloke in a cowboy hat nearby, I briefly admire myself before seeing my 8% rapidly turn into a blank screen.

Well fuck.

I go into Tesco, thinking about how royally screwed I could possibly be at this point. Buy a milkshake, and sit outside for the best part of five minutes.

I have an iPhone charger in my rucksack, so the plan of action was to scout the area of a bar, or a Costa to use their plug socket. The journey was on.

The journey, in addition to being ‘on’ was a lonesome one. Not a single soul on the road I was walking, keeping a watchful eye out in case I came across the person I was meeting. (I assumed Callington had a population rate of fifteen or something).

I think, give or take I walked for about forty minutes, past a lot of trees and the Ginsters factory. Not a charging port, or a shred of hope in sight.

I turn back to Tesco, the sun now rapidly setting.

I go into the petrol station, and swallow my pride.

HellOOOooooooooo!

This is probably the most stupid thing you’re going to hear all day, but do you have a charging port, handy?”

I could instantly see the judgement in her eyes. She shook her head and that was that, apparently.

Hahaha (Fakest of laughs to mask the most real of pains) that’s fine. Do you know if there’s a payphone nearby?”

A payphone?” she looked at me completely bemused. She shouted across the store asking her colleague, which is great because if there’s one thing I wanted it was for more people to be in on this horrific situation.

The lady then rings up the superstore Tesco, and asks if they have a payphone. They did.

It was at this point, walking to the larger Tesco that I realised I don’t even know who I’d ring. To my immediate knowledge I have three numbers that I actually know.

1: My own. Not helpful on the best of days let alone when my phone’s dead.

2: Hastings Direct.

3: My work.

My work was quite literally the go-to number to call, I had a system in which I was going to resort to which included calling up work, and asking whoever was working at the time to go onto Facebook, and message the person in question saying that I’ll be outside Tesco. Then I wait.

Thankfully, it did not resort to this, as salvation, and the person I was meeting was outside!

I was the immediate comic relief of the store, the shame alone is enough to make me question ever going to Cornwall again. There’s a strong chance that I’ll be forever known in Callington as ‘That guy who somehow got lost……….In Callington’

All because of fucking vanity.

The selfie didn’t even save.

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The Single Life of Dan: Episode 02: Breaking News.

With little to no shame whatsoever, I would say that I’m one that quite enjoys drama in many shapes and forms.

Me and Stace would gasp upon seeing some of the bizarre scandals that would take place on either Facebook. Affairs, naked frapes, families literally falling apart, we had seen it all and spoke about it at length.

And let’s be honest who isn’t at least a little bit intrigued when you see a long term couple fall apart over Facebook?

I’ve seen best friends have their relationship abruptly set to ‘single’ after a three month relationship and it still resulted in a hearty gasp and an invite to the local cafe for a pint. (Of coke admittedly, but a pint nonetheless).

So when I sat at my sofa in the starting weeks of February, providing my Facebook friends were half as nosey as me I was set to drop one hell of a fucking bombshell on them.

With a literal deep breath and a few hoops to jump through to actually set the status I announced what was the biggest news of my life for a good half decade, possibly a whole.

Cheers for the little surrender flag too, Facebook.

Cheers for the little surrender flag too, Facebook.

 

See, this came at a very strange time.

Work was going through an absolute stale period of hiring new staff so for a good two, three maybe even four years we very much had the same set of workers. A lot of them turning into friends, in addition to this the close circle of friends I had was very much used to ‘us’.

Essentially I was one of those irksome people who as opposed to being ‘Dan’ who happened to have a girlfriend I was instead one half of ‘Dan and Stace’.

If there was a night out odds are me and her would be on it together, if asked about plans by co-workers I’d have probably have said something on the lines of “Oh me and Stace are doing [Said activity]

It wasn’t a healthy way to live a life, but hell that’s what hindsight is for, plus it kinda helps with the spirit of this blog entry so I guess it resulted in something useful.

Regardless what was done was done my world knew, alerting the world that I was single was another cross off of my single to do list.

And it was one of the most heart warming experiences I’ve had in my life. Within minutes, seconds even I had messages flooding through in regards to my well being.

Dan, Holly, Sarah, among the first few people to enquire, but what I really took from this was nobody, not one single person gave a shit as to what happened. They didn’t say “Oh what went wrong?” or “Oh what happened?” Just checking to see if I was feeling okay and if I needed anything.

Luke, somehow took it worst than I did, dropping all important plans to get me out for that traditional pint.

To a degree, providing they liked her which I have every reason to believe they did, the group had lost a member too.

I remember coming home from work one day to Stace laughing on the phone, turns out she had been on the phone to Luke for two hours.

She had arranged to meet up with Dan, and then both of them meet me after they discovered the BOMBSHELL of gossip (In which I probably shouldn’t divulge)

These little things were the point of realisation that Stace was not just a girlfriend, but a friend to my friends and a core member of our circle of friends.

It was only after a few course conversations were I suffered a bit of an identity crisis. As one half of a couple I knew where I stood, who I was, and what to do.

Suddenly, I was fucked.

I had no idea what I could bring to the table, literally everyone in my life at that time knew me as Dan from “Dan and Stace”, only ‘the circle’ family, and three workmates knew me before going out with Stace, and I was only seventeen at the time.

All of these little identity issues would have to be worked on later however, as I had pressing issues to attend to.

Seeing. People. Face. To. Face.

My most daunting part of the break up wasn’t actually the break up itself, it was the live reaction to the break up.

Out of the people in my life at the time, only Dan, Steve, Amie, Nicola and Nathan knew that this storm was coming.

Incidentally Nicola was the first person I saw face to face since it happened so that softened the blow a fair bit.

Toby, a friend and former co-worker had ran into us and was chipper as always

Soooooooo Dan! I heard about you and Stace!?” he both acknowledged and questioned.

Ye…..yeahhhhh” I awkwardly replied. And that’s when it hit me.

I had no fucking script to abide by in these situations.

And literally, that was the main line I heard for the next three to five days.

So Dan, I heard about you and Stace”

over.

and

over

again.

And to this very moment I still have no idea how to respond to that….question? I don’t even know what it was.

I wasn’t quite in the mood to be cavalier about the situation, I just had to nod along and act like I was cool with it, sometimes added with a little humour, but there was always an element of “What the fuck am I saying” to my sentences.

That was the first form of acknowledgement I got.

The second, was a slight improvement but still nightmare fuel to me.

It was as if it was in a textbook.

The person in question would look at me with sad, soulful, supportive eyes.

Tilt their head at a 45 degree angle.

Look me deep in the eyes

Sigh deeply

Say softly “Hey Dan”

put their hand supportively on my shoulder

Say somehow, in a much softer tone “You okay?”

This had actually happened to me five times. The first time it happened I had actually somehow forgot briefly about the relationship turmoil and just thought this person had a vivid fixation on my shoulder.

It was only after the secondary shoulder support in which I thought “ahhh yes…Of course, I need to somehow deal with this”.

I’m shit socially, almost to the level in which I think “I wonder if I’m at least a little bit on the spectrum. Sympathy is one of those things I simply cannot deal with. People thought I was putting on a strong, loner-like front, truth be told I just didn’t know how to deal with the beautiful swarm of sympathy and support that was flooding my way.

It’s like getting a gift on Christmas day, or birthday. I appreciate it immensely, but I’m utterly shit at portraying such an emotion.

One of the complaints I’ve recently received (A very recent single life of Dan update coming….one day) is that I’m impossible to read. I assume this could have been the case back then.

After a long, long, long two days of running into people, explaining the situation, and having my shoulder touched more than its ever been touched in its entire life, I went into the bar across the road from me.

Somehow, heading to this bar at two in the morning lead us to the next chapter of my single adventures.

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The Enchantress from Beauty and the Beast Needs To Chill The Fuck Out.

With great power comes great responsibility.

That’s a quote we’re all too familiar with.

One in which we associate with those who would actually use said powers with the grace and delicacy that you’d expect a hero to have. Never to be abused, never to be reckless with, never to cause harm to the people.

Villains of course abuse this power, the moment Jafar got his lamp he instantly went fucking mental and used his wishes in like, an hour.

Maleficent went bat shit insane because she wasn’t invited to some party.

Hades, in a bid to rule mount Olympus sent a load of Titans out to fuck Greece up.

All reckless, all gung ho, and all certainly neglecting responsibility.

But it matters not, because they all get their just desserts

Here’s a certain someone though who is barely mentioned, and sure as shit doesn’t even come close to using her gracious powers responsibly.

This fucking crazy bitch.

The Enchantress from the starting narrative of Beauty and the Beast, for some reason disguised herself as an old woman, went up to some guys house and asked to spend the night.

Beast/Non Beast at the time, says no.

As a result she goes “right, fuck you, and your castle, you’re a gross beast now, here’s a rose now fuck off”.

And that’s the last we ever see, or hear of her again….

Few problems..

One.

Why?

What the actual shit has possessed this woman to do this? Was she bored at home one day, watching Catfish and figured she’d single handedly make the most compelling episode the world had ever seen?

Did she know the Beast prior to this moment? Or just see the secluded castle and think, “The owner/resident of this castle must be a dick, let’s test the theory”.

Two.

The Beast must find love by his 21st birthday.

Already that’s quite a difficult feat to accomplish even if you’re not a seven foot cape donning monster.

But it said that ‘years’ had passed as a Beast. Meaning presumably the Beast was between the age of thirteen and nineteen at the time of this lady’s ‘test’.

For arguments sake I’m going to say he was fifteen.

No fifteen year old, in their right mind would let a stranger into their house. Heck, nobody would let a stranger from the woods crash in your house anyway.

But according to old Enchantress here, it’s just cool to crash at the castle of someone going through puberty.

Also, don’t change him into a beast because he’s a dick. All fifteen year olds are dicks. Cut him some slack.

Three.

More reasoning that this enchantress is fucking insane.

Fair enough she was offended that teenage beast found her Catfish form a bit repulsive, and we’ve already scratched the surface that this punishment was a bit too rough.

Maybe turn him into a beast for, I dunno? A fortnight.

Maybe give him a little scar on his face?

Maybe just turn into the beautiful (yet twattish) Enchantress you truly are and give him a stern lecture.

These are fine things.

DO NOT.

Turn him into a beast for years, that’s a dick move.

BUT

Don’t fucking drag his poor servants into the equation.

Without even getting to know them, she turned poor, unsuspecting strangers into a candle, a clock, a teapot, and a wardrobe.

She turned an unsuspecting child into a fucking cup.

She turned a dog into a footstool.

Someone’s got no fucking chill.

Four.

Did she put any thought into this?

She turned the beast into a beast. We get this, it makes sense.

But at what point did it cross her mind to go “Right, this guy right here can be…………a clock” POOF.

Or did she just put her spells on shuffle mode or something? I don’t quite get the logic here.

Turning poor, unsuspecting servants, children and animals into household objects just gives us more reason to believe that she truly has no clue what to do with her powers and she’s just going off on one completely.

And we never see her again. She just disappears to act holier than thou and presumably fucks another persons day up.

Cunt.

SIDE NOTES.

Was anyone else massively disappointed with what Lumière’s human form ended up looking like?

Furthermore at the end of the film, did anyone catch the obvious sexual tension between human Mrs Potts and Maurice?

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Dan Vs The World: Jehovah’s Witnesses.

It’s me and you against the world, baby”

Words muttered by every chav couple that had been together for the best part of two months (their third attempt at being a decent couple too)

Why they feel the need to say this, or even post it onto Facebook as if their shit relationship is somehow a rebellion to the masses I won’t quite understand, nor will I even pretend to.

However this post is not questioning the mentality of these people, nor is it even a post to slander them, because let’s face it in about three months they’ll be posting passive aggressive Facebook memes against each other to do that for me.

No, this is an introductory new series.

Introducing…..

Dan Vs The World.

No, I’ve not entered a volatile relationship (at time of writing), nor am I harbouring any bizarre resentment against the world.

As you’ve possibly figured out from previous blog entries, my social grace leaves a lot to be desired.

As such it’s only natural that I find myself at odds with some of the world, a lot of the time creating awful, tense situations in which I can only walk away from thinking….

Shit”

Episode One, of Dan vs The World sets us up in a sold out venue on a Friday night.

In the Red corner from Plymouth, England. Standing at five feet and nine inches tall, weighing in at one hundred and eighty pounds.

DAN REEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEED

In the blue corner from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Founded in 1870 with 8.2 Millllllllion members worldwide.

JEHOVA’S WITNESSESSSSSSS.

FIGHT.

Round one.

2007.

It was a weekday afternoon, I was hungover. It wasn’t quite the surprising scene for the world. I had assumed my best course of action to get rid of such a horrid feeling of sickness would be to simply shower it off.

If memory recalls I was expecting an important package this day so I played an incredibly risky game by having such a shower but I had to lose the feeling of the previous nights clamminess.

Of course, halfway through the shower I hear the persistent, immediate ring of the buzzer.

BEEEEEEEEP-BEE

BEEEEEEEEP-BEE

BEEEEEEEEP-BEE

BEEEEEEEEP-BEE

FUCK!”

I shout to myself in the shower, I jump out, wrap a poor fitting towel around me and dart downstairs, a moment so powerful I’m sure it could have been accompanied by a Hans Zimmer score.

Swinging the door wide open, I expect to see the Royal Mail man with my package, maybe I could make a whimsicle, yet inappropriate joke about having a package under the towel myself?

This fictitious moment of hilarity would have to wait however as instead of the Royal Mail man it was instead two middle aged ladies.

Oh my, haven’t we just opened the door to a treat wah-har-har” the old woman in purple (Who we’ll call Veronica) said to her friend (…..Harmonica).

Standing, pretty much naked in front of Veronica and Harmonica I wonder what on earth this could all be about, I see leaflets in their hands….On said leaflet was a sad looking Jesus.

Oh fuck.

It’s not in my nature to tell people to go away, so I stood there and humoured the two for a good half an hour, listening about god and how he only created Jesus whilst Jehovah made me, or some shit like that. I wasn’t really listening.

Harmonica took most control of the conversation/lecture, even explaining to me that I could repent for disputing Jehovah doctrine (presumably by having a tattoo),

Meanwhile Veronica couldn’t keep her eyes off my fucking towel in the hopes that maybe it’d fall off and she’d witness something else.

After a while, they stop and ask if they’d like to set up a return visit to find out whatever the hell it was that Jesus did next.

I did not care.

Yet I said yes.

They asked for my name.

I, for some reason told them it was Adam.

They go off to perv on someone else, I shut the door, assured and satisfied that they’ll be looking for some guy who doesn’t exist named Adam.

At my house.

In which they know I live.

Fuck.

Dan 0-1 Jehovah.

Round Two.

2007

One week later, this time not hungover so life can only be good, right?

Wrong.

In my ignorance I had completely and utterly forgot about last weeks run in with the two nightmare Jehovah stalkers. That famous sound echoes through the house again.

BEEEEEEEEP-BEE

BEEEEEEEEP-BEE

BEEEEEEEEP-BEE

BEEEEEEEEP-BEE

Who the fuck could that be?”

I wonder to myself, picking up the little door phone.

Hello?”

Oh hello? Is that Adam?”

……….Adam?!”

Y….yes, Adam we had a little chat with him last week”

Oh I’m sorry, I think you might have the wrong house, nobody named Adam lives…..”

OH FUCK!!!!!

The events of the week prior flood back like a tsunami and I’m now in an awkward position from my own stupidity.

Uhhhh, one second actually”.

I for some reason rush downstairs to greet them, I open the door.

Awww, fully clothed today are we?” Veronica laughs but deep down I can see the disdain In her eyes.

Hahaha, I’m afraid so” I laugh nervously.

Sorry about up there by the way….” I start to explain what goes on to be quite the web of lies….

That was my brother….Dan, he thinks he’s funny by telling people I don’t live here”.

Somehow, they by into it and I receive my next lesson about their religion.

I leave with more leaflets that clutter up my life, however Veronica walked away feeling disappointed so that’s at least a point coming back my way.

Dan 1-2 Jehovah

Round three.

July 2013

I’m walking home from my granddads, it’s a beautiful summers evening. On the long walk home. I walk by two guys in the whitest shirts I have ever seen in my life. They kind of stop near me, watching longingly.

Assuming they’re asking for directions I take out my headphones…

…..Hey?”

Why hi there!”

Oh shit me, they’re American.

Beautiful day isn’t it?” the blonde guy says happily.

It really is, are you enjoying it?” I reply ever so politely.

I don’t remember the map of the conversation but I eventually start to realise that this is indeed a very familiar setting.

I hear of their teachings again, but this time it turns into a somewhat interactive quiz.

Do you ever sometimes feel………alone?” (At this point I wasn’t sure if this question was for religious purposes)

For some reason I humoured them.

Sometimes….late…..late at night, I guess I feel like, I dunno…That there must be a reason towards everything, y’know??” (Bull)

That’s your faith! It’s trying to guide you” he replied enthusiastically, it was endearing.

Dan, would you like to pray with us?”

………….okay”

And I fucking kid you not, all three of us looked down at the ground and closed our eyes.

Dear lord, thank you for setting our path towards Dan today”

I was tempted to turn around and run for the hills whilst their eyes were closed but I just couldn’t bring myself to do it, I at least keep my eyes open feeling the immense rush of blood to the head.

They finish their little prayer and ask me if I’d like to attend mass with them tomorrow morning.

I did not.

I said yes.

So they ask for my address..

And of course, I didn’t give them my address. I lived at number three.

I gave them the exact same street, just number five.

The very house next door.

We part ways as they promise/possibly thread that they’ll see me tomorrow.

Dan 1-3 Jehovah.

Round four.

The very next day is a Sunday morning. I have a rare day off so I’m lying in bed. The girlfriend at the time however is getting ready for work. I had explained the evening prior about my run in.

She leaves for work and sailing so, the two Americans were there!

They collared her, and tried to wrangle her into going church as well. However she didn’t really take much of their belief with the same grace in which I did. They prayed for her regardless, and in fairness she was running late for work, and the bus was late…Thus managing to get her to work on time so I guess god really does work in mysterious ways.

This round however didn’t include me, and it was in fact my last run in with anyone representing Jehovah. Meaning the score remains (for now).

Dan: 1

Jehovah: 3

No more than a consolation point for me as Jehovah secures an incredibly comfortable victory over me. 😦

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The Single Life Of Dan: Episode 01:Rise and Fall.

It’s just like you see in the movies, isn’t it?

A young, happy go lucky, party going kid meets a girl. They hit it off and become instant friends, over the course of time however they realise there’s something there. Something more.

A dilemma now exists in the script. Is there something actually there? Or is it all in his head, will he take the risk?

Suddenly the two find themselves in a will they/won’t they? Scenario despite the crowd rooting for them.

During the final act of the movie our hero bites the bullet and reveals his inner feelings for her, amazingly she’ll blush, smile, and reveal that she feels the exact same way.

The two share a kiss that will be remembered forever, Savage Gardens ‘Truly, madly, deeply’ plays and the credits roll.

This was somehow a scenario I found myself in between the age of seventeen and eighteen. I remember it quite vividly.

Regular readers of my blog will know that I had a bit of a party streak at this age. Not a Saturday would pass without me drinking on it, be it a house party, beach party or illegally drinking down town.

The norm for me at 17

                           The norm for me at 17

It was one fateful Halloween night in 2007 where this somehow changed.

Returning drunk from a house party, dressed as a fucking emo (how fitting for this blog post) I log into Myspace and just potter around on there at three in the morning. It’s then where I got a message complimenting my Myspace wallpaper.

Somehow, that one compliment turned into a friendship that found its way onto MSN. Suddenly, me and her were talking daily and nightly. She lived in Milton Keynes but was due to move to Plymouth so she figured she’d pre-emptively meet the locals. It wasn’t until April when we finally met in person.

Don’t like her, don’t like her, don’t like her” I remember internally chanting to myself as I waited outside a local Boots chemist for her. She approached from the distance.

Fuck”

I liked her.

Thankfully I was capable of keeping this under a thick blanket of denial, it was only a few meetings later where a real nasty infatuation crept up on me and punched me in the face.

It was suddenly then when she occupied my thoughts at every passing moment. I would needlessly worry, I would always want to see her, I would always want to talk to her. I wanted to be with her. And these thoughts stuck with me for a good two-three months. Nagging everyone excessively for their opinion on if I was in with a shout.

It was one of the last weekends in June, Dan and Luke had invited me out. This time however I chose to decline on account that Stace had a parent-free house and she wanted to see if I’d pop over for a movie or two.

We watched ‘It’s all gone Pete Tong’ during said movie I’m pretty sure we inched ever so closer together, the fictitious audience just screaming at us do make a move.

The night steadily started turning into day, twilight looming outside. For some reason we both decided to lie on the rug, with a small blanket over the both of us.

Entwined in a little cuddle, that should have been the moment I went “I’m going in” that should have been the perfect kiss.

Instead, I realised I had a brutal 7-3 shift and had to subsequently leave.

The regret of the missed opportunity circled my head like a typhoon, her lips were inches from mine and I didn’t take the obvious signs, I moaned biblically to Dave in work about my gutlessness that morning.

Yeah, but at least you know she’s into you know, like…She’s gotta be”

Yeah you’re right, fuck it I’ll text her when I get home”.

Instead, I went home and fell asleep to the royal variety performance. I woke up in a daze near the midnight mark, in which I would finally send ‘that text’. Not the most romantic way to declare ones desires but it was the best I could muster after a summer of being shit with women.

It was at that moment where my life changed completely. Either June 22nd, or 23rd (unsure seeing as it was around midnight way) she text back saying she’ll ‘bite the bullet’ with me.

The next day we hung out and had our first kiss under the tree we spent all of our time under. One singular tree in the middle of a secluded area of the local park. Thinking of it, I haven’t been back to that tree in the longest of times.

It went from there really, we ran into Dave and Tanita in the streets. The two people who I had probably divulged most information of my infatuation to, and it was at that moment where I realised that all of the months of picturing ‘us’ together had actually become a reality.

She fit in with my group of friends like the missing piece of a jigsaw, our dark and dry humour complimented each other perfectly, in the grand scheme of things this was the end of our rom-com movie.

But what happens when the credits stop rolling?

In the space of the near seven years we were together we had moved into four different places, we had heated arguments and clashes that could have lasted hours, but not once did we end the day on a fight, even if it was five in the morning, maybe even six we’d still end up making up before ending the day.

Only in late 2014 did these cracks start to show.

This isn’t a name and shame blog post, how we broke up quite frankly is irrelevant. It was not a spur of the moment break up, it was a very much like how we got together, simply in reverse. Will they won’t they? Pretty much the entire world could see that it was going to shit.

It started off simple enough, she’d head out to get free bus tickets from some bloke. This required meeting before his work, out the door at four in the morning, back within ten minutes, back to bed. Done.

Then over the course of time the length of time started to increase, out the door at four in the morning back at five.

The frustration grew as plans were altered to see him, the four A.M ticket pick ups turned into three hour affairs. The guys wife was now ringing up constantly.

Turns out the guy was getting ‘too’ into her, and she told them. Shit hit the fan, the bus driver was gone and for a good six weeks I had a sense of normality back in my life.

Then, during the Season five premier of The Walking Dead he came back, and the whole thing started again.

The final nail in the coffin was where the previous blog post left off. New Years day.

I returned home fourteen hours after leaving the house, to emptiness. Her phone off as I try to call constantly wondering where the fuck she could possibly be.

She enters about six in the evening. No apology, explanation, or remorse.

Final nail in the coffin, I just didn’t care any more.

It’s like watching your football team trail 1-0 in the dying seconds of the final. You make one last counter attack, hoping by some miracle Steven Gerrard belts out the game changing equaliser. 1-1, extra time and back in with a shout.

Sadly, the reality is he pile drives the ball right over the post, the keeper dawdles around with the goal kick and that final whistle is set to blow pretty much the moment his foot makes contact with the ball.

You know it’s coming, yet it still stings like a bitch when that final nail goes into the coffin. Though it comes as no surprise whatsoever, you still somehow cannot believe it.

But when you share the same bed as the person who you once couldn’t stop thinking about, who you once spent every waking moment wanting to be with, who once meant everything in the world to. Suddenly that world is the distance between you in that little bed, you know there’s literally no point in going on.

It was whilst making a bowl of pasta where we broke up.

She fucks off to the Bus drivers house, I set up camp on the sofa.

Watching Hollyoaks until about five in the morning, I realise that at twenty-four, just one month away from being twenty-five. For better or worst my life was about to drastically change.

Frankly, looking back I didn’t realise how drastic this change would be.

Welcome to my single life, it’s gonna be one hell of a fucking ride.

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