Some good news: not only have I managed to stop drinking, I’ve managed to not stop stopping drinking. I’ll start again at some point. Oh, I’ll start again all right. I know I’ll start again. And I know you know I’ll start again. And I also know that you know that I know that you know I’ll start again. Stopping drinking, apparently, can lead to short-term confusion.
More good news: it turns out that stopping drinking can result in mental clarity. Clarity is both good and bad. Good, in that you can see things clearly. Bad, in that the things you can see clearly – curtains, meaning, other people – aren’t really worth seeing clearly. Still, there’s something to be said for detoxification, there must be otherwise the papers at this time of year (which, unfortunately, I can see clearly) wouldn’t be screaming about how fucking brilliant it is at every opportunity. I’ve yet to see the brilliance. Perhaps I will. Perhaps the grapes and muesli that I eat and the herbal teas that I drink and the walks in the country that I take really are something, but at the moment I can’t see it, at the moment all that the vitamins and air and clarity do is annoy the piss out of me and make me look forward to the day when I can drink or smoke or crack cocaine myself to death. Stopping drinking, apparently, can lead to depression.
Thankfully however, there’s even more good news: a friend of mine who is a GP (wish I was a GP) and my brother who is a scientist (wish I was a scientist) are getting a flat together in Finsbury Park (wish I was Finsbury Park). They say I can stay there in their alcove. According to my brother (wish I was my brother), the alcove is big enough to ‘just about’ house a sleeping bag. And according to the friend of mine (wish I was a friend of mine) I can stay there ‘for a bit’. Frankly, I can’t put into words how happy I am about this. Nor, simultaneously, can I put into words how depressed I am about becoming so happy about this – that at 35 I’m overjoyed that I can stay in an alcove ‘for a bit’ that is ‘just about’ big enough for a sleeping bag. That is in Finsbury Park.
I suppose my over-enjoyment lies in the prospect of getting out of Surrey and getting back in to London. There’s nothing to do in Surrey but drink and walk – and I’ve given up drinking. If walking isn’t careful, if walking continues to piss me off, then I’m going to give up that too. All I can do in Surrey, really, is pitch a bit more of the world.
And so with my eyes shut and pen in hand I flicked through the Writers’ & Artists’ Yearbook and blindly selected five publications that I’m determined to pitch this weekend. They are:
Digital Camera Buyer
Fly-Fishing & Fly-Tying
Fun, isn’t it? On a Friday night, doing this – it’s fun. Isn’t it fun? Oh, it’s so much fun. I can’t wait to pitch Backtrack in particular (“British railway history from 1820’s-1980’s”; payment £30 per 1000 words) but all the others are solid gold too. Assuming I haven’t gone mad or started drinking again (either, or both, entirely possible) expect to see pitches for some or all of the above by the end of the weekend.