I’ve been leaving the house recently… It’s really quite exciting. The best part of having a broken leg is that people feel really sorry for you and come over and do nice things like cook, shop, watch TV, take you to the pub, help you onto the bus and get you involved in weird boredom projects such as auditioning for a role on an Australian soap opera. That last part was serious. Since I’ve been sitting on my bum all day for the last eight weeks I’ve been able to keep up to date with the goings on at our favourite Australian suburban location, Ramsey Street. I’ll pretend at this stage that I wasn’t already up to date with the daily happenings on ‘Neighbours’ before I broke my leg. You know the truth. I saw that they are running a competition for a new character called ‘Poppy Rogers’; a twenty-something headstrong vegetarian from a village in England. Hello? Are you describing Chris 12oh5? I got in contact with my fellow soap opera buddies and those with technical skills and arranged an afternoon for us to hang out drinking cider and preparing to make a public fool out of myself. Kim came over with a video camera, Paul with a dodgy Australian accent and a lecherous interpretation of Karl Kennedy and Jaynie with stylistic advice to help me channel my inner Poppy Rogers. All in all, I’m quite satisfied with the results of the audition video and am ready to put myself for public ridicule. I had to make a cringe-worthy piece to camera at the end of the audition explaining why I should win the role on Neighbours. Such gems as “I’ve had a bad run of luck recently” before gesturing to a pint of cider and my crutches did not make the final cut. Instead we went for the tear-jerking, “when I am able to walk again, I’d really appreciate the opportunity to get back out into the world and have an adventure”. Cue sobbing and sympathy. Other than the pure amusement of appearing for a month on my favourite TV show, the incentives for embarrassing myself in public include a free holiday to Australia, a very entertaining afternoon while making the video and the inspiration to write something new (I think I can’t spread out this roller derby/crap life/broken leg/boo hoo shit for much longer).
Other recent adventures have involved Bridge and Tunnel at The Windmill, which included much alcohol, revealing the ‘nasty side’ of my personality to Tom Fiction (expressing my increasing distaste for mediocre acoustic folk punk acts), hoisting up on one leg on the bar to glimpse about one fifth of the bands’ foreheads for the duration of the set, and multiple great people out to have a good time. Yesterday I went to Punk’n'Bowl, which other than an altercation between an incredibly over-rated band and one of their fans, was a fantastic day. Surprisingly awesome bands included Caves and Above Them, who may have listened to a few too many Lawrence Arms records. It’s so good to be back in London and see the scene revived with great promoters, good turn outs and mega fun. I’ve also been overwhelmed by the punk rock support since I broke my leg, small stuff like people giving up there seats, holding open doors, asking me how I’m doing, offering to drive me, carrying my drinks, etc. It all adds up to make me think people are in fact great. And whatever anyone says about Londoners being shit and unfriendly, although this might be true in some places (like these shit bags who wouldn’t give me a seat on the bus even though they evidently did not need them AND those craphounds who think I shouldn’t get incapacity benefit even though I can’t work due to accident), I’ve seen evidence to the contrary.
I have a sneaking suspicion this blog isn’t really about anything. Ever since moving from print zine to online I’ve noticed how I can get away with writing bad stuff because it’s not being enshrined in an eternal document. Plus there’s always an ‘edit’ button. To conclude, did I ever tell you about making a record last summer with my (then) boyfriend Zock? You can’t buy it or anything because it’s super cool limited edition (one copy made). On my list of things I have to do in life: Have fun, make a record, perform on stage, get on Neighbours, become a culinary genius, write a fantastic masters dissertation; I’m doing OK. I did just make that list now, but whatever. Items one to three are now done, which brings me to a little known Chris 12oh5 fact: When I was 14 I went to see the Mad Caddies at the LA2 and their singer had a throat infection, so they asked members of the audience to sing some of the songs. I got up on stage and sang ‘Preppy Girl’ for them. That’s right. True story. Apart from owning the karaoke booth in Japan, I feel that will be the only time I sing in public. Anyway, mine and Zock’s record is under the name ‘Fallen Species’ and we made four songs in his very sweaty rehearsal space in Wiener Neustadt. I actually learned to play bass on one of the songs but we lost the recording, so all I do for this is sing and Zock plays all the instruments so we’ve had to turn down our only show offer to date due to the impracticalities of this set up. Well, that and geographical impossibility. One of our songs is about Jörg Haider who was an Austrian racist politician who was very popular, particularly in the 90s. He died in a car crash because he was drunk driving and we felt a poor-taste song in honour of this event was just what the doctor ordered. We even put a clip at the beginning where he talks in an interview about the dangers of smoking cannabis and how he is careful when drinking. Oops! Is that what the kids are calling a ‘palm on forehead’ moment? Or is ‘palm on face’? Or ‘face-palm’? Anyway, another song is about our favourite Austrian beer, Murauer, which comes from a town called Murau and is made from water from the river Mur. It has a very light hoppy taste and leaves the palate feeling refreshed. I had the pleasure of spending some time in Murau last summer and found it quite agreeable. There was a Stadtfest where people dress up and jump into the swollen river from the town bridge after drinking a lot of beer. It confirmed my suspicion that small-town Austria is mental. No more Murauer for those guys! Another song is a tongue-in-cheek ‘folk’ song about the struggle of the red squirrel against the evil grey ones. This can be seen as a metaphor for issues of race and immigration. Or a silly song about squirrels. As you like. The last one is about pistachios and how pistachios are better than racism. I sense a downward spiral in lyrical content here…Anyone else?
I just realised the sun is shining AND I actually have 18,000 words to be writing at this very moment about race, surveillance, the media and postmodernism. Facepalm.