.also, i am a twat
Joined: Jan 2008
I did quite enjoy living in the woods, you know how it is. There was a certain glorious un-encumbered-ness, owning no more than could be carried on my motorbike, having nowhere to be at any particular time and nothing to do beyond the simple practicalities of fire and water; and perhaps most essentially no-one to be. I often didn’t see another human for days on end, quite lovely really. The odd plane now & again, but what with coinciding with 'ye olde terror of ye ash/engine interface' period there were few if any. Although I quite quickly lost my sense of time I imagine I was out there something toward 40 days all in, not quite the 49 of 'our buddies' Buddha but BLISS is indeed the word. I hadn't eaten more than twice or thrice in the last six weeks or so as I didn't feel the need for external manna to sustain my worthless body, I was now that which was once described as a ‘Useless Mouth’. But also fasting's a commendable policy when it comes to not having to shit, moreover not wanting to shit makes not feasting a doddle. Useful in both asylums & the woods I'm sure you'll agree - plenty of fluids though, Lusean had mentioned I should take plenty of fluids, and beware of sugar :-D
D J S
3 – Well I wood, wouldn’t I? (or, how my fire got put out…)
In choosing my free timber-encircled palace I selected the local dogging woods simply because they're not actually the local dogging woods, but they do have a reputation as such: and so all the doggers keep away because nothing goes on, but all the norms stay away too because they think it does. This created the faultless formula for a bit of solitude as you may well imagine. The locals were far enough away to not be on my improvised doorstep* but they were naturally & instantaneously incredibly curious, so on that first evening, when a passing ‘early-retirement-mid-50’s ex-headmistress’ type enquired (semi-demanded) in a fortified but bristling tone to know ‘What the blazes’ I was doing there please? (you see?, always with the please). I sideways (thru/ough the magical power of harmless clever lies tm) persuaded the old dog walking not-so-old not-so-trout that perhaps a friend of a local friend (no names, no names, discretion and all that you know!?!) may have perchance suggested I might like to stop by on my travails & ‘wood-sit’ awhile. There may have been a suggestion that thru/ough my presence alone I could in some small way discourage those visitors who were, shall we say, ‘walking a different type of dog’. My big black chunk of a scrappy motorbike and various hefty chains along with silence and a few glares might help too. Without touching any one of course, we don’t want touching, that’s the whole point. 'Oh Marvellous!!!' she intoned most appreciatively, all the time steeped in her best Daily Mail mindset.
* The doorstep in question happened to be a half buried rock, the seemingly wholly natural manufacture of which was in the extant image of a skull, bent by environment & wear, with moss eyes bedded in gaunt sockets, the lower jaw removed. I’d not seen it & sat there, but rather sat there & seen it, if you see where that’s at. I left it basically as was, save for added an couple of flint chips for teeth and a gouged lobotomy scar…
Next morning she sweetly bought me a mug & flask of black tea, and what a shock that was to be roused to. To be entirely frank I was unsure how long she’d been there before I came to, and now as I was drinking her succulent nectar she seemed to be watching me somewhat differently than before. If I’d not known better I’d have thought it to be reflexively desirous… Perhaps though it’s more likely I misunderstood as I’m a little useless with my ‘working out what’s going on with a woman’ skill set, which in any case had never been very strong. And besides I still held hope for my love…
My self propelled real-life Teasmade strolled around me chatting as I drank, and, while referring to there having been far more flash photography than one might expect in a wood, and that ‘These blasted people can’t control their Hamptons’* & should ‘Jolly-well bugger orf’, she brought together an assortment of easily portable available geology ranging downward from diminutive rocks to medium sized stones collected from within 5 metres of my residence – she circled them into a small hearth as I watched. To be fair to her and her externally implanted ‘opinions’ she said ‘It’s not just the homos you know, I’m disgusted by the normal ones too…’ Now, to you there on the other side of this ‘writting’ it may certainly seem as though I’ve done nothing but hoard clichéd chestnuts to etch out this implausible woman for you for the purposes of ‘literary’ convenience, but no, you know there are people out there actually like that, totally like that. Some of you may well be those very people. If so, then what the hell are you doing reading this? You should stop as I’ll warn you it just gets worse, in a couple of nights I piss myself.
* Hampton Wick = dick = the male penis. Now you know.
Only then did it cross my mind that she may have poisoned the tea. We all know that without fail there’s always a seemingly neat-as-a-new-pin poisoner in every TV village - I gulped deep on the remains of the beautiful beverage - please let her have poisoned the tea… Please? I’d not built a fire myself, being unsure of the specific subset of rules applying for this space. There were small sticks all around which she snapped & arranged conically, she finishing the last as I removed the float bowl from the left hand carburettor and dripped a few light splashes of its incendiary contents over the now materialized fire-place. I went a small distance to bring a fallen section of thicker branch, the end of which I lay over the already flaming kindling. ‘That should see off the morning damp’ she chirped. 'Oh Marvellous!!!' I intoned with just a little of the Bond eyebrow, and we exchanged brief waves as she walked off into the wood and I warmed my ass on the fire she left me.
Could you tell me, was I supposed to have followed her? I’m not very good at this shit. I didn’t want to and I’m (pretty) sure she didn’t want me to, but I could just do with a reference point. This stuff confuses the shit out of me you know?
I dried my bones and took up various poses to get to all the dampness and came to thinking that first nights slumber had been a positive pleasure - dry, not oppressively cold, mostly relaxed - the pleasantly seasonable circumstance made it quite possible to sleep there on the ground, even without a sleeping bag or other such easily acquired conveniences, though of course the sleeping pills had helped... As I’d worked the fire down to safe embers I’d fallen towards a settled slumber as all the silent stars made their way out, connecting me to the whole of the sky. And there I saw myself laying back into a narrow rivulet, and looking up thru/ough the liquefied lens of the clear flowing water above I breathed the heavy fluid deep within, and proceeded on down into the nadir of night where I saw the trees glide by on the banks. The drifting weeds swimming alongside me, a snapped twig floating by in a current to the side, seeming to be stopping off in eddies & inlets as though looking for a job - ‘I’ve got three leaves & a flower to support you know.’ – All this and so much more until I start to stop breathing in the water and sink wholly to the abysmal depths. This is sometimes how I sleep… Around 4.30am I woke and the world around was dark and the ground was cold with a slight damp chill, then sat a moment amongst the quiet in anticipation of the pre-dawn and began to miss the fire. The bikes vociferous exhaust tone tore a massive rip right thru/ough the supreme quiet as I warmed up the airhead engine, without letting it attain incendiary levels or run too long, and then, killing the dense din, I began huddling myself around the radiant lump. I gripped that metal mother until I dozed off again, imagining at that last moment of wakefulness I was enfolding the warmth of my lost little family. ‘Melodramatic Maudlin’ is the phrase. I dreamt of them for a couple of hours then had to do this warm up routine again around 6.20-ish, letting the snarl of the lumpy old motor ricochet thru/ough the trees as before, its renewed warmth comforting me enough to allow more much-required restfulness until finally being brought to something towards alertness by my morning delivery of succulent tea some-when before nine. All seemed well in my improvised new universe, but the 2nd nights sleep was altogether less successful.
I’d ridden back to Nailsburgh on reserve and one of the things on my list (along with getting my first short-back-and-sides in an age, a visit to the League Of Janets* & footing it to the high street and watching the mass of human pigs making all their busy plans, whilst I stood begging for smokes with a simple handwritten sign that read ‘I NEED ROLLUPS’) was of course to pick up a cheap sleeping bag. While at the hypermarket for a generic fried breakfast & fuel stop, a £7 value-range bag saw me set up for the 2nd night I thought. But as usual I’d salved yesterdays predicament without solving the oncoming tempest – You see I can learn from yesterday but no longer from tomorrow.
* I had worked in a building full of Women called Janet, and while ‘inside’ they’d kindly supplied me with writing materials, inner tubes & tobacco etc. We are all Janet, even if only at the weekend :-D
They were out of stock of the £7 value-range tents that day, but anyway a grand total of £14 seemed an awful lot when it came to setting up home from scratch, besides, the weather was good no? I’d be warm now & that solves that. Might we see written there above one of the as yet un-given tenets of Solvation? – Squeaky Wheel Gets Oiled First. Or - If a thing intrudes into Happy it is to be solved without delay. Come on, lets start simple eh? Foundation contemplations of startling plainness, which may otherwise be regarded or received as stupidisms, but are here identified as isolated & standing out from the otherwise intricate compound prattle-tattle-ticker-tape cacophony of common subsistent thoughts I’m continually full of... So that it is as if to snatch at & catch individual water molecules from out of the mobbing throng of last nights passing enveloping river, by which those other snapped sticks may only be conveyed?
There are benefits to ones stride beating out of sync-step with the common civilization, the simplest of which is to be out from under the tightened umbrella of compulsory opinion promulgated by that which you jointly have called media. No wireless net or mobile signal there amongst the trees, no ISDN outlet below any rock or leaf. I know it’s another unfortunate sub-political-simplism but to relieve myself of these tarnished ink traders and their squalid broadcast ilk, well it was indisputably an obliging release, a well hailed departure, going away to a state where I’d no idea what was out there being said about whatever was over there being thought about whichever horrendous societal injustices & self-evident thefts were thereabouts happening presently/recently/impendingly, whether perpetrated by the dynastic institutions of the nations or by putrid solitary folks, simultaneously all around the globe that day, hour by hour. I didn’t want to know, does anybody really?, and were there times healthier, when we didn’t know and didn’t know it? Anyway what can you do when you do know? There is no solving for others, and so separating oneself from their world is the only solving gleeful bliss to be had. In any case, to unreservedly eradicate all previous cranium scrubbing education would be the only way some way towards actual freedom, and is after all impossible. But, unfortunately, this here fine forested media-detachment that was actually obtainable & in point of fact happening also had what I’m guessing you people would describe as a down side, which was simply the absence of access to weather reports. Not Weather Report, they’re shit, yer actual meteorological guesses n stuff innit? After a day of more ‘entirely pointless to describe’ nothings, and following a comfortably unhurried evening of woodiness & hush (which included just one late-coming passing (then reversing then driving off) visit from a car of unlikely lads & less than sober women) I somehow came to improbable repose on the gravely/pebbly floor beneath the outer fringe of the most grand & principal tree that dominated my environs, that centre of my entire world.
So now enveloped & ensconced in my new blue rectangular cheap quilted abode, with my bikes tank-bag as a pillow come sleep-on-safe of sorts, I found something that wasn’t comfort as I had ever known it. But it was one block of one early layer of an inverted Hierarchical Pyramid of Don’t Needs, as in ‘don’t need to get cold’, i.e. as a foundation statute of Solvation, issues prioritised themselves via intruding into my ‘happy’, leading to ‘squeaky wheel gets oiled first’ solutions – and I was otherwise unmindful of anything/everything until next interrupted by some other variety of what was coming to be classified as ‘Intrusion Into Happy’.
I wriggle in a dismal disquiet at my grand discomfort there on the same out-of-doors floor which I’d had zero issue with the night before, until with vast fortune and sizeable relief, and utterly by chance, I happen upon finding a particular pose, position & degree of rotation & positional alternation that at length brought a suitably sized/perfectly shaped rock to arrange itself directly beneath the spot in my back that was causing my bleak sustained distress. And yet in that exact orientation the rest of my body was absolutely comfy & untroubled by my pimpled mattress of pebbles & stones. There was a very slight slope from the tree towards the gate, yet my assumed position provided a scalloped stone right there at my feet which aided my leggy arrangements, with the tank-bag-pillow-safe rested by the Skull-stone. The back pain was middle left, just off the spine, and was the outcome of years of slouching hopelessly thru/ough ‘life’, or perhaps a roughly healed break in the ribs from some crash or other. Right there and then I resolved that if I were ever to re-inhabit that marital bed from which I was so understandably cast down, impossible though that may be, but if…, then I would have to come back & dig up this remedy made of stone and place it under ‘my’ side of the mattress. Such a thing would never be done for it was impossible for me to return there to the heart of my erstwhile family. But for the here & now the protruding boulder dynamically kneaded me towards an easing of my cricked & complaining corporeal ache, much as the tree had done back in that first copse*. I was now at mental rest, looking at shapes where the cloud free dusky sky cut thru/ough the shifting foliage, and as nightfall shifted ever more towards unbroken darkness I too glid into the calm stream of that swimming adrift which we have called sleep, though this time I wasn’t sinking into last nights sylvan stream, but instead travelling along a hall of ever increasing size. Have you ever glid before? Surely you have. I have.
* Does a rock massage count as unfaithful? I just wanted to check you know?
I’d glid into the acute admissions ward with comparatively minimal effort, considering the trouble most have in accessing services for their ill heath, which usually ends up with them having no option but to perform overtly ‘Oh yes they is nuts’ stuff at which point someone else becomes obliged to take action. But you see as my silver bullet I deployed the magic words. That is the catch all - can’t ignore - ward unlocking – must react to - never fails concept of ‘I will kill me’.
This was the day I’d arranged to vacate the family home, and in the late morning I’d had a pre-booked assessment meeting with mental health services at which I naturally raised the issue of self murder. This resulted in a 3.15 pm GP appointment and a referral to ‘The Crisis Team’. On returning to the empty house I sat in still hush* until just before 3pm. I’d packed all the things I thought I’d need to hand, at least all I could carry & no more, tidied the house, done any outstanding laundry & dishes, hoovered etc. Very nearly everything else I owned was packed from out of the house into my shed, excepting a couple of sensitive electrical bits, a few NAB reels of quarter inch audio tape that hadn’t yet been digitised, & some data CDs, none of which would relish or survive the dankness in the shed. Out of the way on a shelf in the lounge I placed a set of four small tins, each stamped with an elephant, each sized to fit inside the preceding, and in the smallest inner tin a ring depicting elephants, all of which my dearest Wife had given me a long, long time ago. On that last afternoon in the house I had no consciousness of the reason why I left it there, and I still don’t know. At 3pm sharp I left the house as I’d promised, locked the door, and posted the keys in an envelope along with a cheque book & snipped debit card on the joint account, which had held my redundancy & now stood at or very near zero of our english pounds. I also left the NHS payment exemption card that came under my youngest sons disability living allowance re his Asperger Syndrome**. I really didn’t feel I could legitimately continue to claim free prescriptions under an allowance that was based around & awarded to a family I was, from that very moment, no longer part of. I’d also cut up my two credit cards, both of which were at or near zero (I think one had forty pence owing?) so that I didn’t leave or accumulate any debts for which we might diagonally be deemed jointly liable. I included a note asking if I might retain the wedding ring, mine of the pair my erstwhile wife made for us, keeping it for the meantime at least. I rang my soon to not be father in law & left an answer-phone message saying I’d vacated the property and would not return, but that for the sake of stability the family rightfully could. Don’t imagine that I could think of any of this as chivalrous or right-on. I was a sick cunt & that’s why I couldn’t live there with them, or perhaps more rightly they couldn’t live with me, for which I cannot find it in myself to blame them at all.
* Apart from the bit where I sobbed & punched myself :-D
** For which I believe myself to be genetically responsible :-(
At the Doctors appointment I had much the same conversation as in the morning, and the GP referred me to the crisis team, and told me to call him again if I’d not heard from them in two hours… He was unable to prescribe the meds I’d run out of as I had nothing to pay for them with, having zero cash & no extant grounds for exemption. Overall, luckily, I’m quite aware of how these sorts of things pan out in practice, and my Doctors surgery is just round the corner from Nuthouse Major. So I jumped on the motorbike to make my way directly there. As I sat at the T junction outside the Doctors a scrappy 40 ton(ne – which is bigger?) lorry was approaching at a somewhat higher than speed limit speed, and at the very last before it hustled past I fleetingly slowed all time and had a blissful reflex to leave go my clutch & brake, jerk out across its tragedic trajectory and see my glad release in it’s unstoppable pounding momentum… I saw it all happen in a brief eternal instant, then drove on, though there are many times since I regret having not taken the option. Instead I went directly to the parking at Nmaj., and there I waited for the two hours to expire. Two hours to the minute. I need not have gone there, need not have stayed there, could have fallen thru/ough this utterly nonsensical fissure in arrangements and just set myself free from this carbon based reality we (you) call home. But at that time I was driven to hold still, and held by a due desire not to harm Wife &/or Children thru/ough completing the act I most greedily desired for my very own self. That ending of me. Yes, it’s so fucking melodramatic & me-me-me & petulant & do it or shut up. It’s just I’m so fucking tired you know? Back at the railway line years past where I last considered self murder there was no-one else to be impacted upon, no-one that mattered anyway. However, now there were four innocents. I know I should have done it back then.
At the exact passing of two hours waiting, in my mind's eye we five of the family all walked hand in unseen little hand, together into Nmaj. reception & presented me into a place of safety, so that in those looming moments where my ‘Do no harm’ rationale (above) could not sustain itself against my ‘YOU DO HARM’ I might be inconvenienced out of action by (theoretical) oversight by staff or at least via a limitation of opportunity i.e. they cut off the lower branches of the trees in the ward garden, and otherwise limit opportunities for strangulation thru/ough the design of showers & handles and so on (though there was one spot you could’ve manage it, ssshhh :-D). Had I not gone to wait at Nmaj. on that first day, stayed there, and held tight the invisible hands as I went into reception, then ‘You do harm’ would have undoubtedly prevailed effortlessly. So I duly presented my frayed & collapsing disease riddled parody of ‘myself’ to the crisis team members who had been immediately convened by the kind & perceptive Reception Staff, and I showed them the state of me… Then I was locked in.
Now, back out, and in my wooded time all was well within the limitless confines of my cuntry car-park, and sunken in my refuge from actuality I let go such remembrances as these, & cared as little as I was able for everything anywhere beyond. I slipped across into a sheltered slumber sometime around utter darkness, that being whatever time that it was when the sleeping pills kicked in long after I dryly sucked on them, having run out of water. Tomorrow I must make sure I got more water.
...using the wrong spanner since 1964...