Beadier-eyed readers will have noticed that this post isn’t called College Dog. I’ve had trouble writing College Dog. For a start, College Dog turned out to be about a bear. This isn’t what I wanted. I wanted College Dog to be about a dog. Second, it was the most depressing screwed up piece of shit I’ve ever written. Again, this isn’t what I wanted. I wanted something a bit loopy and surreal – possibly even upbeat – not a depressing screwed up piece of shit. Regular readers will know that despite occasional appearances to the contrary, I don’t like writing depressing screwed up pieces of shit.
It’s been a strange day. This morning, after yet another night spent dreaming about rats, I began thinking about College Dog-Bear. “Ha,” I thought “How boringly predictable that I haven’t written that. Or at least written it properly. And how predictable that I’m still living in my Nan’s dining room. I wonder how long I’ll be here for. I wish I had some money. Why don’t I ever have any money? Or rather, why do I get big bits of money and just spend it really quickly? And why do I write less now for newspapers and magazines than I’ve ever done? Fuck, I’m shaking. I have to stop drinking from Thursday night until Sunday evening. Ah, that’s why I don’t have any money. Is ham and coleslaw a good breakfast? Fuck it, I’m eating it anyway. God I need a walk.”
This is true – I did need a walk: the thought processes outlined in vivid, thrilling detail above probably went on for an hour and at the end of that hour I needed a walk more than I’ve ever needed a walk before. About ten minutes into my walk I met a fat messed up tramp with crazy hair who was looking in bins on the beach. The beach looked splendidly bleak; French-cinema bleak. I gave him all the money I had on me and a cigarette and asked him how he was.
“I’m trying to get over a divorce. I can’t handle it.”
Oh dear, I thought, I’m going through a divorce. I hope I can handle it.
“How long has it been?”
“Twelve years. Can’t handle it.”
I can handle it, I thought. Or can I? Am I doing? Maybe I’ll be looking in bins in twelve years’ time, I thought. Maybe idiots who live in their Nan’s dining room will flee to the beach and give me cigarettes and money when I’m looking in bins in twelve years’ time. Or twelve weeks’ time. Or tomorrow.
We talked some more, mainly about his inability to handle things, but after a while my ability to handle things was also evaporating and so I made my excuses and left, and walked for about an hour without looking at where I was going and ended up on a stretch of prehistoric-looking beach and there was no one else around as far as I could see and I was suddenly reminded of the end of Planet of the Apes which I had seen at some point during my drunken weekend stupor and so decided to get down onto the sand and scream: “You MANIACS! Damn you! Damn you all to hell!”
That, dear readers, was pretty much my whole day. I’m not sure what any of this means. I think it might mean that I need to finish this project and go and do something less stupid instead.