Sunday, 27 March 2016

Saturday 5th March 1988

We have got no settee and we've only got one chair so I'm sitting on a sofa cushion with another for a back rest. Went to chesterfield mum got a pair of boots and a pair of shoes and I got some peanuts and a little jotter!! we saw millions of policemen and women. I know why because there was a football match one. Sheffield Wednesday lost to Notts Forest 0-1,


Shitty content but content nonetheless.

Let's break this down:

We had no settee (for foreign types, that's one of our many words for couch/sofa). I think (I could scan ahead to the next entry in my diary but where's the fun in that?) this is where we went from a giant beige suite that we'd had since I think before I was born, to a fancy new pink one which lasted so well that I had the armchairs from it in my flat in Nottingham in 2006. I also remember it being a bit of an adventure briefly having no furniture, kind of like camping in the front room.

But seriously, no one was looking at that bit and wanting much exposition, let's talk Chesterfield shall we? Mum got some boots and some shoes. 

I can't remember if I've talked about me and shopping on this blog before, adult Neil I mean. Well I think this is the kind of thing that was maybe the genesis of my problematic shoe buying habit. I had the option on Saturdays of going to the football with my dad (not always, but sometimes) but he was a referee so my introduction to kickball was a baying crowd shouting rude words at my dad whilst I burnt my tongue on cups of Bovril. I remember at one point eating way too many hot sausage rolls with my friend Matt whilst our dads were linesmen and getting very very ill. All in, I think I had probably the wrong first impressions of football. 

My other option was to go shopping with my mum, and whilst some peanuts and a little jotter doesn't seem like much right now, at the time I was overjoyed enough to write 2 exclamation marks after it. 

So yeah, I like shopping and I don't like football. Those things have helped me with ladies over the years and have caused me to end up with about 30 pairs of trainers. 

And let's touch on the last 2 points. Look how smug the 10 year old me was for working out why there were so many polices in town... and I am going to get some anger from the fact I said Notts Forest, I know (now) it's Nottingham Forest. Sorry. By the way, the Wednesday - Forest match was not the reason for the police, (we were in Chesterfield, I imagine it was a Chesterfield match.) that there is what could be called a semi sequitur.

Oh and it was fashionable in the late eighties to end a sentence with a comma.

Saturday, 26 March 2016

Friday 4th March 1988

Went to racing club came 32nd out of 35 rubbish!!! it's been a boring three days because thats all that happened!!!!!!!!!

That's the spirit little man! To be fair, finishing 3 from the bottom at the only competitive thing I've done in my life was a bit disappointing but that was a fairly uncommon thing as I was pretty averagely ok at RC car racing normally. Although I had to sometimes sit and hold the button on my battery charger for half an hour so that it charged my batteries properly - at home this was always whilst The Paw Paw Bears were on, so the theme tune which sometimes still pops into my head reminds me of my thumb hurting and the smell of electrics frying slightly. 

I hope things liven up for 10 year old Neil soon, it's been a fairly dull patch.

Thursday 3rd March 1988

forgot to write yesterday but nothing happened apart from we had an hour off school. Nothing much happened today really all that happened is I went to school.

I'm so sorry.

If this doesn't convince you that the stupidly over-long URL I picked for this blog is appropriate then hold tight and pay more attention.

You know when you type/write/read/say a word so many times in quick succession that it stops looking like an actual word (there's one word that has always made me question myself even after one utterance or use - that word is 'glimpse')? The word 'happened' stopped being real after transcribing my pitiful entry from 28 years and 23 days ago.

Two days, two whole days... all I can think to talk about is that I had an hour off school? No idea, I presume some kind of teacher training or something? I don't think it was a bombscare but even if it was all you'd get from 1988 Neil would have been "nothing much happened today apart from we got evacuated from school when someone found an unexploded WW2 bomb in the long jump pit. Got to go now my foot is cold".

I'm just annoyed with myself for not realising I didn't have to only talk about that day, I could have written more about London but no...

Tuesday 1st March 1988

Went to london with school today I went in the Science museum there was missiles allover and space rockets. I saw a Ferrari F40 the fastest road going car legal stopping now because I'm tired.

I told you in the last entry that the London visit has lived on in my memory/imagination since... good job really as this is the report from what I definitely remember being a really fun day out with so many things to see and do...

Great work again little Neil.

I saw an F40 though, that happened, they're pretty rare and I was very much into spotting awesome cars. I remember being slightly obsessed with an Alfa Romeo that looked like a brick, I've still never seen one in the flesh. Let's Google '"alfa romeo" brick' and see what happens eh?

Middle row middle-left, the red one in the same photo as the white Giulietta, and conveniently the car directly above Brick from Anchorman with whom it shares a similar facial expression.

I think this tells you a lot about me. It may explain why I love most of the architecture in my home city of Brum that is currently being torn down as it doesn't fit with most people's ideas of what architecture should do. I like lumps I guess, big lumps with unexpected angles in em.

So, I was legitimately tired this time I should probably concede. I'd had a big day out in London and had done a lot but so much was lost which could have been fleshed out later. Next time I'm 10 years old I'll try to do this better.

Monday 29th February 1988

Me and Fay are almost in love with each other. I have got another verucca on the other foot and I have to get to school for 20 past 7 because of the London trip stopping NOW!!!

Almost in love with each other? In that you're in love with her but she's not with you? No more detail you think you might want to give to the emotional subject you started with maybe? Nope, let's move on to more important matters like foot health. 

How were you to know that 28 years later you'd be reading this and remember nothing of the events which led to such a bold statement? 

I think I remember the school trip though, it formed the basis of the archetypal 'turned up to school naked' dream for many years to come, with one slight (and very Neil Dowling) twist - sure, I was in my pyjamas on the coach and around the Natural History Museum, but the thing I was freaking out about more than anything else was the fact I had bed hair. Anyone who knows me reasonably well will attest to the fact that my Achilles' Heel has and will always be my hair. I have made situations very uncomfortable in the past when my insistence on definitely going home rather than staying out and sleeping at someone else's house/getting a hotel lest I wake up with unmanageable bed hair and instantly lose friends/potential girlfriends when they see the 'real me'. It's something I really only got over in about 2005. 

It's also anthropologically and pedagogically interesting to note that aged 10 I had no idea how to write the time properly, although I'm reasonably certain there have been other entries with time in them that didn't jar like this.