Saturday, July 21, 2012


I got up bright and early today, clocked my run, and then my wife went off to work, leaving me at home on my own, destitute of any goal or ambition.

Previously, I would have taken up some space on the floor and played on the xbox until she came home and pointed out my laziness, but as part of my plan to focus on meaningful activity, I've unplugged the xbox and stuck it in the spare room. I could have gone to a cafe and wasted the morning drinking coffee, but since I haven't drunk coffee since June, this weekend was hardly the time to start.

I did the next best thing; I swept the floor and washed the dishes, then walked up the street to the office to work on my novel. Well, I don't have a reliable keyboard at home, and my desk at the office has three monitors, which is great fun when redrafting. I was worried that I'd end up checking emails when I was meant to be creative, but I resisted the urge for an hour and a half, finally giving in to Facebook after wrangling a chapter into shape. When I realised I was dicking about on a computer when I didn't have to, on a sunny day, I switched everything off and left.

I left, to go home and fall asleep on the sofa, because if you can't ignore sunny weather and hide indoors at the weekend, what is the good of anything?

Late this afternoon, after my second lunch, we went shopping and spent an unconscionable amount on basic foodstuffs (and peanut butter) and I almost fainted in the bra section of Marks & Spencer. It must have been the low blood sugar level from not having five square meals today. Then home, to Chinatown, where to celebrate Racial Harmony Day/Weekend/Month they were playing incredibly loud Cantonese opera to a gloomy crowd. You can't have racial harmony without harmony, is all I can say.

Racial Harmony Day, which sounds vaguely odd to Europeans (shouldn't it be Cultural Harmony?) commemorates several riots fifty years ago between Malays and Chinese, and subsequent attempts to integrate people. There's some irony in doing that in Chinatown, which seems to be full of Chinese and not many other people, but never mind. I'm more hopeful that in a few years' time we'll have Socio-economic Harmony Day in the UK, to promote integration between hoodie-wearing teenagers and bankers. If riots can lead to national holidays, they're not all bad.

You may say I'm a dreamer, but I'm not the only one.


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