Tuesday, September 07, 2010

Poetry and sweat

Today I went to the gym at lunchtime, which turned out to be a mistake. I assumed that after half an hour of exerting myself over the rowing machine I'd be suffused with a post-exercise glow that would keep me cheery through the afternoon. Instead, I read a perfunctory email on the way back from the gym and was in a huff for the rest of the afternoon, this state of mind worsened by having worn myself out. At least I had remembered a change of clothes, rather than going to the office in a nylon singlet and a pair of short shorts.

Then again, that would give people something to laugh at. Although I'm not sure that I can stretch "look at the silly man in scanty clothing" out to the seven minutes that the Hong Kong Comedy Competition demands for a successful performance. There's another month to go though...

I would dearly like to win the Massive Cash Prize, because then I'd treat myself to a new pair of headphones. Somehow (and I apologise for the revoltingness of this) because my ears sweat so much my headphones seem to have decomposed, or dissolved, or just given up the ghost. This is at least the third pair of headphones I've killed in a year, and they're all nominally sporty pieces of equipment. These are not some sylph-like, fragile items of audio paraphernalia. No, they're the kind of things advertised by manly sorts using them as a personal soundtrack to parkour or skateboarding or racing leopards.

Perhaps that means they're just not suitable for sweaty men listening to Swedish indie-pop and perspiring. Oh well.

This evening I went with all my work colleagues to Frites, a Belgian restaurant, where they all drank lots of beer and ate mussels, and I looked on like the ghost at the feast, a martyr to my twin goals of (a) losing five pounds and (b) eating all the chocolate-coated ginger in the world. I was a little despondent, but then I took a taxi home and discovered that my dear benighted mother had posted me not only a copy of Four Lions, the new Chris Morris film, but also a copy of Poetic Off Licence, by the sadly-no-longer-with-us Hovis Presley (1960-2005).

It's a wonderful book of poems that I'm taking a break from to write this up, with gems like
bigger than the Beatles
there's really no comparison
Dave's taller than McCartney
I'm wider than George Harrison
What are you waiting for? Go to www.hovispresley.co.uk and order a copy, and then come back and tell me, or else I'll write another hundred posts about sweating.


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