The Color of Leek

If we judged people on how they understand theatre, we’d judge him to be kinda dense

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It’s Number Two-rump squinting-makes-me-hate-ovaries, Mike “sword of Damocles” Pence

Ahh, how refreshing. I took a little weekend off from the blog which mean I was able to finally squeeze in my normally customary monthly teeth cleaning. You should see these chompers. As yellow as a ripe banana playing centre-back for Borussia Dortmund.

Glorious.

Though I partially jest, life admin does take a hammering when you have back to back (to back to back) weekends of wandering this scorched earth.

Last weekend I returned to the mütterland to both see Munster play some hardcore oval-ball and generally irritate my family with my presence. It might have been the hours spent outside or that toilet seat I licked, but as the weekend whiled on I could feel a familiar swelling in my throat.

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And not like what I felt when I tried to complete the Chiquita “no-chew” challenge.

I was getting sick. Despite being in my youth a wheezy sickly little Tsar-child (great Rasputin reference there for the Russian history buffs <punches chest> I got you…) I haven’t been particularly sick over the past few years. Since once catching light hypothermia on a PARTICULARLY terrible date and almost losing my leg in India after getting human poop in my mosquito bites (not even my own poop, how embarassing) I have been pretty much illness free.

That said, with almost perverse regularity I get a 36 hours flu, complete with bone-aches and flopsweats once a year. I have missed one day of work for sickness in my life. This one occasion was because in the same job I had come in sick to work previously. This work was with autistic kids who in response to my sneezes and lack of ability to respond, would then go spare and start punching me.

They were pretty clear about me staying home.

Another choice flu workday was when I was in Japan and I fell asleep on a piano. It doesn’t make me a better worker, but it does not necessarily make me an absent one. This last week was no different, with one full day of me sweating through my thick sky blue sweater and at one point accidentally slapping my computer screen.

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I have a good track record with Apple products. I genuinely just had this photo from my life.

I later found out that no one had realised that I was ill, which either speaks lengths of my ability to hide my suffering from a cold and indifferent world (also works for hiding more murderous impulses towards my fellow commuters on the 08:11 for Waterloo) or betrays much about my day to day levels of sweatiness.

The real low point of this bout of November speed-flu, came the night after a day of explaining away splotches on my sweater as careless beverage consumption rather than excess man-tit moisture. I set myself up on the couch and cooked up a bellyful full of fajitas… and maybe washed it down with an inebriating beverage that was not a what you use to whip eggs, but was like it.

Whisk-y. It’s my little reward for when I am totally banjacksed with illness. It did make me real emotional and this threatened to spill over into a full blown meltdown when I ate a particularly good chocolate cookie and felt overly grateful for the sweet ennervating sugar crust. It wasn’t a tear. It was like 1/4 of a tear.

God I want a cookie.

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What’s that universe, I deserve 2? You generous F you.

The future travel itinerary is thick enough, with a commute to Brussels this Tuesday and a wedding in Ireland on Thursday.

The challenges of work travel are myriad but the baseline is getting up very early indeed and then sitting still while getting dehydrated and holding in a number 2 that you ran out the door without addressing because you wasted loads of time trying to find the tie with the fewest mayo stains. This much can be assumed.

We had a weekend visitor in the form of fellow #TraleeBoy Colin, who both gave us an excuse to shovel pizza into our gizzards and keep me company through the trying time of a latenight boozy movie doubleheader of Stop Or My Mom Will Shoot and and The Color of Night a piece of Bruce Willis erotica. Which I think we can all agree is the only genuine type of erotica.

Interesting thing about him, as well as an erotic artiste, he is also an accomplished dendrologist. Indeed Bruce Willis is the only former members of the Planet Hollywood ownership crew to have a tree named after him.

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I give you- Spruce Willis. Are your legs sore? I had to bring you a long way for that joke.

The rest of the weekend was very grown up, including getting through a lot of life admin. I even drove us to the HomeBase. Like a baby deer that had cocaine injected into the base of its spine. But I did drive us.

As a little reward for doing something I’m less than keen on, we decided to basically empty Aldi out of their range of delicious boozes now that we had the boot to get it home. Note how I didn’t say “buy.” They will remember the day we darkened their door for some time. Even used their own off-brand Black and Deckers against them.

I wonder what the headline will be? “Budget Alcohol-Crazed Powertools Massacre Aldi Staff in Surrey (We Can Only Assume).”

Print it.

In other news, Meg had some interesting thoughts on the rugby recently. We were watching the lead into the Ireland vs All Blacks game, when she seemed uncharacteristically interested in the Haka.

After finishing, she was silent for a moment, taking in the aftermath of the ancient and even mystic ritual she remarked “Wouldn’t it be awkward if you forgot the moves? <waggling her index finger>  HOOKI HOOKI!”

Wouldn’t it be awkward indeed…

Oh and in a final punchline after writing a bunch on how I don’t take sick days, I ended up taking Tuesday off after being struck down with stomach cramps and vomming up a shepherds pie so hard that is splashed back up in my face and when I blew my nose after a chunk of potato came out.

Time doth make fools of us all. And shepherds pie.

Shepherd pie doth makes fools of us all.

The Color of Leek

Ant Coloner of Leek

It’s nature’s brute law that we do what he says,

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It’s lean mean Emilio “Secret Sheen” Estevez

Doesn’t that high tempo freak-out shot make him look super-like his brah-brah? Maybe they roped him in as Emilio’s freak-out double. And then they stuck a wig on him and put his head up Molly Ringwald’s skirt.

I’d believe that before I’d believe anyone letting Judd Nelson get near their hoohoo.

Ragging on the Judd Nelson. Aren’t I recent? Keep scrolling down and I go to town on the Kaiser’s withered hand.

So I am now fully returnified from Canada, land of maple, constant apologies and slightly sub-USA portion sizes. Our last three days in Vancouver passed quickly and included a relaxed wander around an  improbably beautiful forest-gorge. They crapped out on the authoritive accent lottery, but they can sure do geography.

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The ugliest place in Canada.

As well as scooting around the mountains a little, we got to spend a bit more time with Charlie, Meg’s new nephew. He’s only 3 months old but he’s already porking up hard (like I can frigging talk), developed a kick that can pierce a hole in a car door and going through enough facial expressions in a minute that he looks like one of those weird face switching suits from A Scanner Darkly. Little known fact, before having the lengthy course of hormone therapy required to become a quip with legs, Robert Downey Junior used to be an actor.

You heard me.

My return flight was without serious incident though not without call to narrate. As Meaghan has mentioned to me more than once recently, I am getting old. There is a clump of grey hair in my beard, my knees often sound like I’m stepping on cornflakes and my previously trustworthy belly, no longer takes my hearty abuse with the good humour with which it is intended.

After multiple days of ribs and pizza for breakfast (zero exaggeration), dodging edible plant-life of all descriptions and boozing through each evening to one degree or another, I awoke on New Year’s day, my final of the trip with about a 5 on the hangover scale. Unpleasant, but forgettable especially as it was the first one I’ve had this year. Hilarious.

My appetite was reluctant to fully return though and I was unable to finish my early pre-flight dinner of pizza (accidentally ordered a prawn one and was able to swap it for the one I had actually wanted, their fault for having something so gross on the menu frankly) and some ginger ale which I felt flooding my system with much needed hydration and calories. All was right with the world.

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If you’re nervous right now, it just means your spidey senses are functioning normally.

As we trundled along towards the airport, the car got warmer, or did it? My seatbelt started to tighten along my middle, or did it? Man these brakes are sensitive, keep jerking me forward in this seat. Feck, that’s just what brakes are meant to do.

We pulled in outside the terminal and I hopped out, feeling a minor hiccup rise in my ches- AAAAGHGHHHHHHHGGAGAGHGH!

There was more of it than anyone could have imagined. One single 37 degree celsius orange torrent, rising and falling and rising yet more, like a Fanta Amazon during monsoon. Heaping itself upon itself, with a simultaneous spirit of renewal and utter devastation. It drove itself on with an industrial determination, irrepressibly heartless, but magnificent like the baleen of a whale or an ant colony on fire.

My moustache must have looked preedy-good.

Feeling infinitely better, we boarded our flight home and I know this is going to sound a bit Fancy Dan but jaysus it is hard to settle back into economy class after getting a taste of the good life. I’m a real softie now. It’s the new me. But some things will never change.

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Like I still manage to get out of a toilet using a maximum ever of three sheets. Creative folding and lots of fibre. M’lud.

I waved goodbye to my last sniff of comfort as some kind of fratboy-Eminem bundled in beside me and immediately took off his shoes and socks. Like a criminal. Then he pulled out a huge notebook and started scribbling in it like he covers his cereal in methadone every morning. I assume methadone would make you write quickly. I don’t take methadone.

Glancing casually over, this was the kind of nonsense I read.

[Why why why? There is all the confusion. All of the corruption. It makes me want to. SHOUT.]

[No one is original now, didn’t they hear. There are so many questions, but who’s the brother with the answers. No one…?]

[I am a total imaginationless gimp, who has laquered my ceaselessly steaming ballbag in Lynx (Axe for the North Americans) Africa, the most nauseatingly sickly sweet scent in the greasingly-pubescent arsenal of the 14 year old.]

And this turd was almost 30! He then proceeded to lean his sweaty ham-bone shoulder across the armrest and onto me, soaking his acrid stink into my shirt.Through my shirt. Into me.

Now I gotta take a slight tangent. I know, how unlike me, right?

Keep outta Belgium you gimpy-limbed so and so. You will ultimately discredit Germany, both by your own deeds and those you set in motion throughout the first  half of the twentieth century. Yahah! Told that damn Kaiser good. This is what they call a comedy call-back. In the biz. This doesn’t read as fluidly as I’d like but my backspace is broken, I’m fairly jetlagged and here we both are.

Fart.

In other news, we have not been reacclimatising well upon our return to the UK. We are off our sleep and meals by 8 hours and (speaking for myself) swollen from weeks of revelry. Our diet is broadening to reinclude items that never had hooves as well as to the more drab standards of UK cuisine. As we wandered through our local supermarket (sometimes I find myself staring at the freakshows in there grabbing scotch eggs, three per hand and wondering to myself, “What are you?”) we discussed the options for lunch.

“Sausage sandwiches?” I ventured.

“No! It’s not… luxury.”

Canada ruined her.

Ant Coloner of Leek