The world is my Oyster

Hola. Hope you are well.

Not Friday gone but the previous Friday, my Oyster card stopped working. There was no build up to this, it hadn’t for example been malfunctioning, it just stopped working.

As I was at a train station, I sought the advice of a couple of officials. The man at the gate, tried my card by pressing it against the card reader, it didn’t work. I could have told him that, in fact I did tell him that. Then he looked at the card and said there was a little crack at the edge, he bent it a bit to prove the existence of the crack and then explained that this was why the card wasn’t working.

Both the official at the gate and the woman behind the counter said I needed to go to an underground station where they would be able to exchange the card and transfer the money I had on the broken card to the new one.

The nearest tube station was one stop away, but in the opposite direction to where I live. I go to buy a single ticket for this one stop and get told it would cost £2:20. That’s Two Pounds and Twenty Pence for one stop. I decided to use my contactless credit card as an Oyster card, which brought the price down to £1:90 (sticking it to the man).

At the underground station, I explained to a different woman behind the counter that my Oyster card had stopped working and that I’d been sent here to exchange the card and transfer what money was on the broken card. The woman behind the counter told me, “They don’t do that any more, I’d have to ring the Oyster people and they’d sort it out.”

I was now, still without a working Oyster card, further away from home and £1:90 down (advantage the man). Under these circumstances I thought the best thing to do was to buy a new Oyster at £5 and top it up by £10 so I could get home. On that journey home, I got to thinking this was the Northern Gods getting me back for mocking the Manchester summer in my previous blog post. You may think I’m paranoid but that doesn’t mean I’m wrong.

Til next time, be nice to each other.

@anunknowncomic

Should you have time to spare, have a listen to my comedy prongcasts (we’ve just done our 100th)

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Grey skies and downpours

Hola. Hope you are well.

I went back to Manchester for a few days during half-term and maybe I’ve been living in London too long (I have) but it was noticeably colder up North. I wasn’t without blame, I travelled inappropriately, I took my summer jacket and only had one layer of clothing. What was I thinking, you can’t dress like that in Manchester when it’s only the end of May. I should have expected the grey skies and downpours. The rents cheaper though.

Whilst in Manchester I saved my books (How to Dump your Girlfriend) from being thrown out by the publishers. I now have about 40 of them in my possession. Whilst carrying the heavy bag of books and about to board a bus it did cross my mind as to whether JK Rowling has to do this kind of thing?

With my knowledge of Supply and Demand (A-Level Business) my concern is that with people knowing about the existence of these additional books, it will bring the price down. Although with them currently selling on Amazon for 1p that may prove difficult. Please Note: the postage & packing is £2:80, which makes me think I should have got into postage & package rather than writing a book.

Also on my week off I joined Facebook. Future historians will look back and find I was the last person ever to join Facebook. In the past I’d steadfastly refused to join but now you can add Facebook to the list of things I said I wouldn’t do but have, which currently includes moving to London. At this rate, this time next year I’ll be married and supporting Man Utd.

Til next time, be nice to each other.

@anunknowncomic

If you have time, have a listen to my comedy prongcasts. Cheers

Less is Demure

me. pic by Jay McCorkle

me. pic by Jay McCorkle

Hola. Hope you are well.

Today’s blog is what could be described as a poetry special.

Firstly, I’d like to direct you to a poem of mine, that I read out on the radio show I do. The poem is about the radio show I do, with references only the handful of listeners we get will understand. Should this not put you off, the poem is about 5 mins into the prongcast.

Secondly, I found a poem a couple of weeks ago (in the vault) that I was commissioned to write, on the theme of fashion for Cartwheel Arts, back in 2008/09. (back when there was a little bit of money to pay artists and performers)

As it happened this poem wasn’t used, overlooked for another poem I wrote, despite the photo shoot being designed around this poem (see pic at top of the page). So after a few minor tweaks and a few years on, I thought I’d give it an airing.

All you need to know is, Middleton is a town in Greater Manchester, Hulme is a place in South Manchester and Milan is a place in… you probably know where Milan is.

Less is Demure.

Everyday we decide whether to conform,
Stay ahead of the norm
Or just to stay warm.
From the pristine white at Lords,
To the black worn by Goths,
Even Adam and Eve wore loincloths.

Everyday we decide to dress to impress
Or belie the true feelings we possess.
Yet our search for individuality has got lost,
down the aisles of high street stores.
Where brand whores, put price above child labour laws.

We have editors desperately seeking the next big trend,
But irony dictates, that as soon as anything becomes popular
it is the beginning of the end.

Catwalk models strut their stuff on the runways of Milan,
Wearing outfits only they can.
And I’m not one to assume,
but I don’t think you’ll see these clothes in Middleton or Hulme.

The kids I see, wear sagging jeans in good need of a belt.
Whilst shops sell ‘iccle’ baby grows designed to make the heart melt.
Hawaiian shirts and Bermuda shorts seek warmer climes,
And even Paris Hilton wears knickers sometimes.

Fashion likes to look back on its lot.
From Marilyn Monroe in ‘Some like it Hot’,
To shoulder pads and leggings from a time style forgot.
Yet don’t ask me why,
But there’s nothing wacky about a wacky tie.
I said, there’s nothing wacky about a wacky tie.

Til next time, be nice to each other.

@anunknowncomic

Who’ll play me in the film?

Hola. Hope you are well.

In my last blog post, I mentioned that I managed to get a line in what I’ve now discovered is a chaotic poem. The poem then went on to being displayed in John Rylands library.

The downside (there’s always a downside) was that I wouldn’t get to see the poem up as it would be taken down by the time I’d returned to Manchester for Easter.

On the morning I was travelling back to Manchester, I rang the library, on the chance the poem was still up, only to be told it had been taken down. Sad face.

Only joking, despite being told previously that it would be taken down by the end of March, it was still up.

So on my return to Manchester, the first thing I did, was go to the John Rylands to see my words up on a big wall. To coin a phrase used regularly by broadcaster Danny Baker, “It’s the feel good story of the year”.

Me and a chaotic poem

Me and a chaotic poem

All that remains is to decide who’ll play me in the film of this story. In the past I’ve been told I look like Kanye West and Puff Daddy, so maybe one of them?

Til next time, be nice to each other.

@anunknowncomic

Should you have time, listen to my comedy Prongcasts