Friday, 19 March 2010


Well then, my friends, here we are. This is definitely it, because I gotta disassemble and pack the computer tonight.

It's been a strange week. Strange 'good', really. The Noob started on Monday. Don't ask me for any details because I won't divulge any. And yes, the Noob was hired before I told y'all about it, because I couldn't risk somebody being crazysmart. And make no mistake, this worries me; some of the comments, you're making me a little nervous. Let's get this out of the way now. Please don't try to find out who I am or where I work. Talk to me personally via the available channels if you want to, I'm amenable to that, but please don't try to be 'smart'. This is my life we're talking about here, please don't fuck with it. Just read and enjoy.

The other side : Wow. Are you guys bored with me thanking y'all yet? Once more, with feeling. I'm blown away by you people. It's beautiful. I haven't managed to get time to say even 10% of the things I wanted to say to you, but I have read all your comments, and I have smiled so many times. Jesus, I don't know how to say what I want  to say. You have been the best audience ever.

So hey, the Noob started on Monday and has been doing damn well, and The Boss has been being pretty sane, pretty together. She has made the effort. I've been a goddamn nervous wreck, but sometimes that's when I'm at my best. I've been solely left with the task of training the Noob, while also doing my job, while also already doing my new job from here, and then going home to try and sort out moving my whole life to a different place. Hectic. Insanely so. But that sort of works for me, in a way; I'm always scared that I'm only a few inches away from being an asshole when I'm bored, but when I get going,  I guess - if I may say so - I can make things happen, I can deliver. Whatever that's worth. I don't know. But that's what I do.

So here we are, my personal possessions leave on Sunday, and I leave in one week; in one week from now I'll be in my new apartment. I think I've got it more or less sorted; clothes and furniture and stuff are easy to pack but computers and musical equipment and instruments are a motherfucker to sort out, mostly because as a person who works in the freight industry I'm scared shitless about all the things that might happen to my stuff; Christ, I see related horror stories every day, and now I must entrust everything I possess to this insane system. But hey. I've done all I can do, and now it's up to Lady Luck. Please, Lady, let my instruments all arrive in the same condition in which they departed. If I had a god, I'd pray. As you must know by now, of course, I have neither religion nor much by way of politics; in place of these, I have Coughlin's Law and Hanlon's Razor.

Ah, fuck, I've stressed enough this week. I've fixed everything I could fix, and am trying really hard to chill out now.

This, I suppose, may seem harsh to you, if you work in, uh, let's call it a "gentle" occupation; and us, we, the shipping guys, sometimes we take ourselves quite seriously this way, because we deal in success and results and "did you fucking get it sorted!??", only. Shit must happen. Shit must arrive. I know there are many occupations that take this attitude, but hey, this one is mine. So yeah, all arrangements for moving my entire life at short notice were left to me to arrange, naturally, because if I couldn't arrange that then why the fuck would I have this job? So it's ok. I'll make it work. It's what I do.


May I open up a little?

Ah, it's a crazy time for me, the now, as you can imagine. How the hell did I get to be here?

I wanted to be a writer, when I was in my mid-teens I guess, for years; I remember one of those moments now, the things that we cringe about in retrospect; when as a fourteen year old my mother found me writing short stories instead of doing my homework and I angrily retorted "I AM doing my homework - I'm doing the homework for MY FUTURE CAREER!". Red face now, when I remember it. But then I discovered music and it's great many associated pleasures and follies, and abandoned the idea of further education in favour of being a rock star, and that lasted until only a few years ago, and somewhere in the middle of all this I accidentally became 'a guy who works in shipping'. And then in the last year, 'a blogger'.

And now.. it's good. I feel open minded about the future, younger than I did five years ago; things are good, people, it's all ok. Maybe when I get settled over there I'll spend some evenings playing some tunes, or maybe I'll write some stories - whatever the hell I feel like doing, really, that's what I'll do. Life has a way of beating our dreams out of us and we know in our hearts that eventually it will always win, but it is vital, fucking vital, that you still dream, because life is short and pain is long and if you aren't willing to dream then you might as well go home right now.

On those who have most kindly complimented me on my writing - thank you - I write some serious things, which the greater public knows nothing of; I guess I maybe fancy trying to write something serious, or to even let the greater public read some of the things I've written. Or maybe I won't. But it doesn't matter so much any more.

I get scared about the future, in brief moments, usually at two a.m. when I'm unable to sleep; but hey, it's just life. Let's see what it holds, and let's see what we can do with it. But I get excited too, and the line between excited and scared is nothing more than the briefest flicker in the angle of incidence.

So... yeah, I'm losing the thread. You still reading? ;)

It's been a funny week. And I've been running around like a madman, but I like that. So my worldly possessions are leaving at the weekend, and I'm leaving on Friday next week. I have a few good friends who have helped, and a really good long-time buddy who is going to fly over with me for the weekend and help me pack. This man was my tour manager back in the day and knows how to make shit happen, and will be invaluable. So anyway today it came down to the stage of booking flights.

So today, busy as hell, I also had to try and get The Boss to arrange flights.

This was even more difficult than usual due to the fact that our internet connection in the office was playing sillybuggers, and I was trying to do three jobs, and some arseholes planted bombs all over the country - ok, politics aside, if you plant a bomb or generate a bomb scare you are nothing more than a fucking arsehole - which makes my job quite interesting as I often must rely on having a functioning intrastructure in the country to achieve things - and also I'm trying to make calls to sort out my personal arrangements in between. I actually have a red sore on my left ear from where the phone has been firmly pressed against it. Seriously. And wishing like hell I had time to deal with my actual personal life, and hoping like hell the people involved in same will understand.

So - good. The Boss managed to book me on the right flight. First time. Excellent.

Bad - instead of booking my friend on it too, she booked me on it twice.

Then the internet bit the dust completely.

So I just said fuck it. It'll work out. It'll be ok. I went and had a couple of beers after work with The Boss and The Noob, and went home, and a while ago The Boss phoned me to tell me she had made the correction to the flight details, at whatever cost. And I said, hold on a fucking minute, I told you he needed the nine PM return flight on Sunday, not the nine fucking AM return flight. And she went, and she fixed it, at a cost of a further £56, and now it's sorted.

If it was a different time, I'd be annoyed or frustrated by this, but now, what's the point? The Boss?

Kids, The Boss is crazy.

But.... The Boss is, in many ways, alright.

When I told her I'd got this job, to answer a question many of you have asked - "what happened? what did she say?"

I'll tell you, and I'll tell you the pure truth. Her words to me when I broke the news that I had got it, verbatim -

- ' I got it' -

"I'd'a been amazed if you hadn't".

I'll leave you with that.

This is the Silent Koala - not sayin' goodnight. Just sayin'.

Love you.


'goodbye' is such an ugly word. I prefer au 'revoir'.

Sunday, 14 March 2010

End of Level Boss

Ah kids, chums, buddies.

Friends, Romans, Cunts.

Fetch y'selves up a drink and sit the fuck down.

Here it is.

I don't quite know how to do this one.

OK. Drink, breathe, etc.

Right then.

The question has often been asked round these parts - "why the fuck do you still do this?"

I've deflected it, mostly, but in essence - Well, because it's a good company to work for. A fucking great company to work for. I like the company, and I like the work itself.

Alright then, where are we.

An opportunity arose. A big one. A big job, high level job. I took a stab at it - with the encouragement of a small pocketful of close friends. This was a couple of months ago. I didn't tell you, yeah. Apart from other reasons, I didn't think I had any real chance at getting the job.

Those of you that pay close attention to my farcebook will have noticed that I've been spending a lot of my weekends jetting over to England lately.

I got the word, people, I got it. I got the word and the word says I got the job. I'm being shifted out of my position, to go and do some serious hardcore kind of shit; I'm fifteen years younger than everybody else that is doing this kind of shit, it's that fucking serious. It's serious. It has paid off; it is the jackpot. It's fucking brilliant, it is fucking excellent, can you dig this? Your Koala just got the BIG JOB. He's going to join the A-Team.My head is spinning. EXECUTIVE FUCKING KOALA. And it's all happening very quickly. Very quickly. I not only have the job to think about, but I have to move from my native island to that strange foreign land known as England, and not only that, but I have to do this fifteen days from today. This is nuts, crazy, mad fuck shit nuts.

It's great. It's sad. I'm drunk, now, when I write this; I've been in a drunk condition for writing many of these posts, but now I'm drunk. But I gotta tell y'all. Coz I owe ya. Listen.

I started writing this just as a development of emailing three close friends every day to tell them how nuts my boss was; and mostly, I just did it for stress relief, and to make my friends laugh. It's fucking nuts to me that so many people are reading it; that so many people give a shit. You guys don't even love me, you love the fucking Boss - meditate upon that, my friends, consider it.

This is trippy. For me. I guess it's funny, this blog, some people have suggested to me that it's funny. OK, this is real. This is my real life. It's funny to me, too, a lot of the time; or sometimes it's just fucking lunacy. Doesn't matter. I have won, kids. For now, I have won. I stuck with it, and I knew the right opportunity would come along in this company, and I waited, and when the opportune fucking moment arrived, I took it. Allow me a moment of standing here on the pedestal with my dick in my hand, would ye?

It's over, then. This blog thing. It's been... wow. Where the fuck did y'all appear from, Jesus fucking Christ like. I didn't ask for this. (tongue in cheek kids, tongue in cheek)

Ah, shit, my friends, this is weird shit. I couldn't have done this without you. That is not a platitude. I could not have done this without you. I really could not. I would'a quit. I've been so close to it so many times, really. But I knew I had to hang in there, to get the Big Job. I'd buy each and every one of you a drink for your help, your support, your shared tales of your own workplace insanities.(mind you I'd prefer it if you paced it, and didn't all arrive at the bar together) -  I would have quit, without this outlet, without you people. I know some of you are gonna be sad about this. Don't. Just don't. I'm so glad this whole fucking thing has some kind of happy ending. It's been like having virtual-workmates. Hesus. How emotional do you want met to get:? I fucking love you, and I fucking owe you. 


I'd name names except that I'd fear for leaving some out. If you feel like I'm gioving you a salute here, you're probably right.

Ah, come on. Nothing lasts for ever. This is good, this is wild and crazy. I have won, friends, I have won. This is it and that is that and that's all she wrote. Somewhere in the middle of the Boss lady singing, the fat lady sang. I owe an apology of sorts to some of the readers that I know IRL that are just hearing this news now - fuck, folks, it's been a crazy couple of months, with minimum personal headspace. Phone me. We'll talk.

Shit, that's it. That's it. that's it and that's all, folks. I am happy. My future looks bright. What else can I say?

Thank you. A big, fucking serious, heartfelt THANK YOU.

He who laughs last, my friends.


Friday, 12 March 2010

What's In Your Drawers?

Tell you what, I've just had a look through mine, and from a detached perspective, some of it's a bit weird. My inventory of just one of my desk drawers is as follows :

6 lighters
1 tube of toothpaste
1 toothbrush
1 pair of nail clippers
1 packet of nicotine-replacement gum
2 packets of KFC salt
1 packet of brown sauce
1 packet of Bachelor's "Chicken & Country Vegetable" soup
1 mostly new box of co-codamol
1 packet of anadin
2 novelty shotglasses
1 copy of Metal Hammer, January 2001 edition
1 bottle of covonia cough syrup
2 packets of filters
1 packet of ibruprofen 400 mgs
2 Damanta gig flyers
1 bag of small pebbles
1 small bottle of ouzo
1 sheet of blue carbon paper (what century is this?)
1 canister of deodorant
1 almost depleted box of Turkish Delight
1 copy of "Bad Science" by Ben Goldacre
1 broken section of shatterproof ruler
1 stapled collection of receipts, various
4 packets of rizlas in various states of usage
1 plastic spork
1 packet moist wipes
2 rolls of surgical tape
1 CD containing jpeg artwork for a comedy t-shirt
1 ancient lemsip
1 packet of marbles
2 pairs of sunglasses

Feel free to share yours with me. Is everybody like this? I want to know.

Your Panic Is Not My Emergency

Ah, it's a fucking great line, but I wish it was true. 

OK. So I arrived into work this morning and discovered, pleasingly, that the office facility has installed an espresso machine. I availed myself of this facility and proceeded up to my office, at the outside I was an absolute of 25 minutes late. 

The Boss was in a bit of a mood. Not with me, but obviously under pressure. I sat down and commenced to work ferociously, and about ten minutes into this was interrupted.

The Boss : "26035428"

Here's me : "Brilliant."

The Boss : "Well?"

Here's me : "Well.. fuck... what?"

Yes, well-spotted, I have a very very slight hangover. Don't fucking judge me. I've had a lot of coffee too, so actually, just get the fuck out of my face you fucking fucknut.

The Boss : "Fill in the blanks."

Here's me : "Wha? You fill in the blanks."

The Boss : "The blanks in the accounts."

Here's me, getting it : "Ah. Remind me of what two six whatever actually is, would ye?"

The Boss : "Jude. Nigel."

Listen, I am resident in this crazy mental country now, I speako del fucking lingo at this stage, truly to fuck.

Here's me : "Yes. I know it now. OK. What's the problem?"

The Boss : "You need to bring the accounts up to date."

Alright, so here is what is happening here - The Boss has been going through the handwritten accounts ledger and has found some job from the past in which the accounts of profits and loss do not look complete, and she is asking me to rectify this. 

Here's me : "No sweat."

The Boss : "Now."

Here's me : "No."

The Boss, escalating slightly : "I need it done now."

Here's me : "I'm right in the middle of something here. It's urgent."

This is no lie.

The Boss, making ein Critical Error : "NOW. I was supposed to have these figures sent by yesterday and I need this done now."

Further info - ok, I had no idea she was working on figures for HEAD OFFICE, and there is this old kind of maxim in this time-sensitive industry involving the concept of how if you have fucked up by a whole day you can surely wait another five minutes for my help.

So I finish my current business and she's by now wound up to a very high number of revs per minute, but is not actually being directly nasty to me and besides I'm too wrecked, tired and shitty feeling lately to be overly sensitive about this kind of shit. So I announced that, having finished my urgent tasks, I am going to once again avail myself of a fine doppio and also smoke a feg. This goes down every bit as badly as you would imagine it might, but nonetheless, this coffee is quite fucking delicious and I fully intend to drink what we quantify here as "a fucking shitload" of it.

I carry out the next step in my masterplan, i.e. I have a double espresso and a fucking cigarette, and then I return with the intention of submitting myself to being a slave of The Boss's insane whim for an hour or so before proceeding with the serious business of  being an insane capitalist wanker for fun and profit. Whom's fun and whom's profit, exactly, remains to be determined, but I'm hardly alone in that sort of existential discomfort, so let us proceed unhindered.

So I sez, give me the job number again, and I'll fix it all up. And she does, and I do. However.

As I am sitting working on these figures, I become aware of the fact that The Boss is staring at me, watching me closely as she spoons yoghurt into her mouth, checking that I am actually Doing What She Has Demanded.

Anyway, I study the entry in question, and it's a big mess of scrawls and pencil lines (some of these scrawls are mine, ok) and so I  go the storeroom, which in my huffy mood last week I totally sorted out, and find the relevant file and set about making it accountable-for in the ledger.

Now, what unfolds before your eyes next is a cunning smoke-and-mirrors trick, and you must watch closely.

Here's me, coy : "Do you have a rubber?"

The Boss, scaling it like Richter : "I GAVE YOU A RUBBER WHAT DID YOU DO WITH IT?"

Here's me, smug : "I threw it in the fucking bin."

The Boss is at Defcon 4 : "WHY!?!?!?!?"

Here's me : "Because you drew all over the fucking thing and broke it in half."


Here's me, getting into it : "I haven't."

She actually threw the empty yoghurt pot behind her. Seriously. It hit the wall right over and behind the much-maligned Bin. I meant to check but I forgot, but there's probably yoghurt on the wall.


(keep it in your mind. she is referring to sorting the accounts which she is supposed to sort and which she was supposed to have sorted by yesterday)

Here's me, happy, having fun : "I would bring the accounts up to date.. But I haven't got a fucking rubber."

The Boss rummages for a few seconds, then whips something out and hurls it in my direction.

My mind spins. It spins. It becomes relativity; it becomes the Large Hadron Collider;  it becomes Schr√∂dinger's cat; I am become unto Dave Bowman, I am Koalavatarotron, destroyer of worlds and bars;

It lands a few feet in front of me.

I stare at it for a while, and then I make a move, and pick it up.

It cannot be.

Yet... it is.

Yes it is.

It is my Shiny New Fucking Rubber.

I examine it for a moment with mixed feelings. It is somewhat frayed around the edges and so on but otherwise in much better condition than I expected.

Until I turn it over and see that she has actually, actually, actually, taken my Shiny New Fucking Rubber, and taken a pen, and has written her name, in ink, thus staking her claim, marking her territory, no seriously fuck me how old are we both, she has actually written her fucking name on the back of what-used-to-be-shiny-new-fucking-rubber. Her name, her first name, she has actually inscribed it in large blue ink block capitals upon MY FUCKING SHINY NEW FUCKING RUBBER.

Thou shalt reap the whirlwind of my vengeance.

Wednesday, 10 March 2010

Bad Rudolph Rising

All week, The Boss has been singing the first line of Bad Moon Rising. This annoys me a bit more than her usual medleys, mostly because on this occasion she's butchering a song that I really really like.

Today it stepped up a gear when she sang :

"Don't go out tonite -
- making spirits bright"

The tune was approximately correct for the first line and veered off key a bit for the second.

She then proceeded to sing this sporadically for the rest of the day but slowly the tune morphed until finally she was, actually, singing lines from Bad Moon Rising to the tune of Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer.

Have pity.

Boss Lee

There's a building across the street being renovated and as such it is filled with workmen. I can see them cracking up laughing several times each day when The Boss does her boxing-type moves. It's usually when she's standing waiting for a print-out, she'll say "put em up!" to no-one in particular then fire off a volley of punches at an imaginary foe.

This has been going on so long I don't even notice it any more, but the reaction of the workmen, who usually momentarily down tools to stare across into our office for these demonstrations, has reminded me that it must indeed look pretty hilarious.

They miss the best bit though, where she makes loud "SHOOP SHOOP" karate-movie style overdub sounds with each punch.

Tuesday, 9 March 2010

Otherwise Engaged

My desk is this large L-shaped sort of affair, with the computer and so on at the front end and a bit of space over to the right of me. When I've got my head buried in figures or whatever, I like to swivel my chair away from the screen and it's distractions and work at the bit of desk to my right hand side. This has the dual advantage that I then have my back to The Boss and therefore have a higher chance of concentrating.

I was in just such a position today, and very much lost in thought, when out of nowhere, and to my great shock, I felt something pressed against my left ear.

Now, The Boss, it is fair to say, does not normally move with catlike agility, and there is a reasonable distance between her desk and mine. I don't know how she covered the distance between the two without making a sound, except to suppose that she in some way employed the dark arts to cloak herself or perhaps somehow fold space.

Anyway, in a state of mild shock, I whirled about quickly, managing to strike myself quite squarely above the left eyebrow with the item she had snuck up behind me with and pressed against my left ear. The item in question, her mobile phone, clattered to the floor, and I recoiled in shock and a certain amount of horror at this unexpected proximity. The Boss in turn recoiled at my recoiling (um, recoilation?) and we were left then both staring at each other with the mobile phone lying on the floor between us.

Here's me, a bit shaky : "What the fuck are you doing?"

The Boss : "Is it engaged?"

Here's me : "What??"

The Boss : "My phone. I'm trying to phone Brazil. Do you think their engaged sound is the same as ours?"

Why does everything that happens in here have to be so... weird?