Wednesday, 8pm, The Gate Theatre
A date with a hot bird, that isn't roast turkey and trimmings, our first for too long as far as I'm concerned.
As we climb the steps to see Stoppard's The Real Thing (which has a little loveheart over the 'i' in thing) I proffer to her, by way of coarse yet tasteful amusement, that this is the first piece of culture we've shared that isn't bacterial. A rumour of a laugh tinkled beside me, I think.
The play, I opine loftily afterwards, was jaunty, effervescent and fizzing with sparkling humour, and wonderfully well crafted. This is just functional generosity, of course, and what I really mean is that it made me realise how I can't write half as cleverly and wittily as I'd like to think I might some day be able to. I secretly resolve to boot Tom Stoppard in the balls if I ever meet him, for being such a talented bastard. Then I decide against it, because the fecker would probably dash off an uproariously funny play about it and that'd just defeat the purpose entirely.
If he could describe a turgid and banal protest play, in which the author attacks all the usual targets such as Church, State etc, as: "It's like being run over very slowly by a travelling freak show full of your favourite simpletons," well fuck it, I might as well give up.
10.45pm, The Elephant and Castle, Temple Bar
Jesus, those chicken wings are something else. Well not literally something else in that they're still chicken wings and not, say, pieces of a donkey, but you get my drift no doubt. Typically however, there's something on the sauce that makes me sweat like Christy Moore on the Late Late* and when I slink off to the bathroom to 'freshen up' as I say suavely to my date (in italics and all, I'm fierce smooth me) I'm shocked to find I've spent the last 15 minutes all blotchy and odd-coloured like Manchester United boss Alex Ferguson.
11.43, The Porterhouse, Temple Bar
Two pints of Porterhouse Red, the second one quite illegal, served as it was at 12.15am. It was the sweeter of the two, naturally, so I drained it with a gulp, lipsmack and a sigh, and empathised with Adam and Eve for fucking everything up for the rest of us like they did.
Then I plant a big kiss on the apple of my eye and she seems to like it so I do it again.
Thursday, 11.50am The Breakfast and Supper Club, Ranelagh
Porridge, honey, raisins, coffee. It barely touched the sides.
On the way out, I pass a lone woman sitting at a table reading a book called Release Your Inner Power.
God's teeth! That book clearly works, I thought, as I gagged a little in the fresh fumes of her fart.
The person beside me is listening too loudly on their impersonal stereo to a tune called the 'Great Defector.' I have one of those moments where despite myself I think of how funny a typo 'Great Defecator' would be and before I can stifle things, I'm giggling to myself and mothers are watching me slitty-eyed and gathering their children unto themselves.
1.26pm, Grafton Street
I have some time to kill before wanting something else to eat so I opt for shop browsing, to sharpen my skills at the old fending off recessionarily underworked and over eager shop assistants. I resolve not to buy any more nice gym gear because I simply spend too much on it.
1.53pm, Champion Sports
Running shorts and a teeshirt, €36, paid for on the never-never, or Mastercard to the uninitiated. I'm nothing if not steadfast.
2.20pm, Ha'penny Bridge
There's a woman throwing bread to the seagulls off the Liffey boardwalk. I remember a piece I read in the Sunday Times magazine about the urbanisation of seagulls - it was a quiet Sunday - who find so much rich pickings in landfills and cities that they can't be arsed living at sea and fishing any more like they're supposed to. They're becoming so numerous they're not far from being classified as pests, and so territorial and narky they've started attacking humans.
I wonder if this Mary Poppins was ankle deep in embroiled rats in a sewer would she feel the same and feed them chocolates. Then again, who thinks of seagulls like this?
3pm, Messrs. Maguire, O'Connell Bridge
I'm nothing if not steadfast.
3.37, Tara Street Dart Station
I'm standing on the platform reading a book called The Shadow of the Wind. An old woman with a faraway smile glances down at it and asks me if I like Charlie Lansborough?
I'm too thrown to answer so I just nod enthusiastically and she goes off happily, trailing her bockety tartan shopping thingummy after her.
I read through my blogroll. I laugh at Leeroy, I marvel at Meadow, I do alliterative things to others also but my vocab won't stretch as far at outlining precisely how and besides, it doesn't strike the right chord to say I ROFL'd at Radge and sniggered at Susan and what not.
I sigh and wonder what Tom Stoppard would write. I pause, fingers poised, then I sit down and type.
Then I give up and write this instead because as days off go, these weren't bad ones at all you know. I'd have loved a classic Ferrari and a teacher called Ed Rooney to torment, before singing Twist and Shout atop a Saint Paddy's Day float, but listen, you can't have it all.
*Oliver, Galway. Cowzer's stag.
The art of grooming
11 hours ago