Liver required; apply within.

Wednesday 20 March

Hello dear readers.  It’s been an interesting couple of weeks.  By interesting I mean delightful, debaucherous, disturbing, disappointing, and downright  deviant.  I really don’t know where to begin, but let’s start with passing my CELTA course with a B grade.  This pleases me.  That means I’m in the top 23% of trainees in the world who achieve that mark.  Of course that means fuck all when it comes to teaching, it just shows I can graft when I need to and spin a good yarn with the written work.  I still haven’t the foggiest about tenses.  Disclaimer for future employers: I will learn.  I promise.

With that out of the way I’ve once more been left to my own devices, which as you might expect has encouraged me to return to my over-indulgent hedonistic lifestyle.  This resulted in a string of boozy nights out, a flurry of girls (including a promised three-some; that story is for the book), an as ever anti-climatic St Paddy’s day, an unfortunate incident with a BBW, having a lovely girl stolen from me by a German (REALLY?!), being blamed for the loss of a credit card/visa combo and getting a harsh knock back from someone I actually quite liked.  In between I’ve been handed a selection of girls numbers, all of which coincidentally don’t appear to work.  A guy with a neck bigger than my waist has threatened to break me if I continued talking (quite innocently) to his girlfriend.  Somewhere in all this I’ve visited the dermatologist, been incorrectly diagnosed, spent a fortune on treatments which have made it worse and approached an online UK specialist who has thus ordered me to go for a liver enzyme test.  Tomorrow I visit a hospital to get needles stuck in me.

So here it is then.  The beginning of the end.  the first prognosis towards my untimely demise at the hands of alcoholism.  For years I’ve apparently had Rosacea, which I’ve been inflaming with my appetite for the sauce.  Now I need to have a series of liver tests ASAP, as the resulting WC Fields redness on my face may indicate problems.  I’ve been put on antibiotics, and a beta blocker to lower my blood pressure and take away the lobster head.  This could be an issue, because I already have a lower than normal BP, so they “need to keep an eye” on my progress.  As I arrived home, I found my Ecuadorian scarf which I thought I’d lost again.  Swings and roundabouts.  I take a walk to Margaret Island in the afternoon Budapest sun.

I’m lost down the rabbit hole of a world of joggers.  People are stretching on benches.  The latest trainers flash past in a blur of neon and reflective tape.  Tight asses (men and women) wiggle in a defiant show of how much effort it took to obtain.  I don’t belong here.  The seedy closed down bar with the Heineken sign is as out-of-place as I am.  It mocks me.  Or maybe it was a knowing nod, as we both understand our time is up.  Those days are going if not gone, but  as yet another picture-of-health Venus gazelles on by, I wonder if I’ve been in the wrong lane all along.  Perhaps my life is actually just about to begin.

 

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Played it till my fingers bled…

Monday 11 March

Last night I witnessed more evidence of the debaucherous, neanderthalic shenanigans of the Budapest party hostels.  Now for the most part, my experience of these heathens has been somewhat tainted with idiocy.  It has usually consisted of lots of tall morons wearing wife beaters emblazoned with Fluer De Cana or some other such unoriginal shite.  While I attempt to look semi respectable, everyone else has gone out looking like a tramp, and you can spot several nipple rings if you stand next to these people at a certain angle.  There’s usually so many tattoos you wonder where the skin starts, and I’m concerned as to when they last came into contact with soap.  However, they know how to throw a party.  They’re not a bad bunch really…

I’ve woken up with blisters on my fingers, and my right hand has dried blood all over the nails.  For the first time in my life, I was playing open mic with a full band, and on the odd occasion I had that rarest of feelings that this was what it was like to be rock star.  Now I’m not saying was any good, far from it – several vodka red bulls saw to that – but for the briefest of moments, superstardom beckoned.  Strange then that I look across to my right and only see a cushion.  I must have been really shit.  Delusions of grandeur.   It was nice while it lasted.

The odd thing with these aussie types is that it’s actually quite warm under the wing of the dragon.  I had a blast.  If you can’t beat em, join em; but I won’t be downing cupfuls of salt, mayonnaise and cold soup any time soon.  I might consider a tattoo though, if only I could take my shirt off on a beach.

My time in Budapest is drawing to a end.  One door closes, and…um…another one…wait…any second now…no.  Another door remains closed.  Oh no there we are it’s opened.  Potential employment as an English teacher.  That is if I passed the course.  I find out tomorrow.  So the door is actually still closed.  I’m rambling.  I shouldn’t update my blog when I’m hungover.  I’m away to get chocolate milk.  Seriously that stuff could cure anything.

 

 

 

 

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He giveth and he taketh away

Thursday 21 February

Looming over me from the grammar shadow in the corner was my first lesson teaching tenses.  I was thankful that it was relatively straightforward, explaining the difference between going to and I will.  Give ‘em an activity, tell ‘em what they got wrong, draw a few timelines and other squiggles on the white board, kid on that I know what the hell I’m talking about and bish-bash-bosh; job done, knowledge imparted.  This is where you feel I’m going to divulge you with some nightmare horror show of how it actually went, with howls of pain from the students, and my tutors eyes and ears bleeding from a grammar holocaust.  Well get this; I aced it.  Best work he’s seen from me, everyone should follow my plan and procedure work, I’m an all round great guy.  For the first time in as long as I can remember, I was a good example.

So I’ve been bouncing along on a carpet of air for the past couple of days, surprising myself that I might actually pull this one off.  Did my eyes betray me or did that cute waitress give me a double take in our chicken-and-tarragon soup stop every lunch?  I must remember to put a shirt on tomorrow.  I found a 1000 florint note in my washed jeans.  I bought a new underarm and I smell good.  It’s Old Spice.  I swear the woman in the 24 hour place wants to sniff me.  I ate langos for the first time and the greasy, deep-fried doughy goodness reminded me of home.  I’ve been doing the best poos in months, and my innards are not clogged with the stench of dead animals from 72 hour benders.  Life was peachy.

Returning from one such lunch break in high spirits, I’m handed an envelope with my name daubed across the top.  Interesting.  Now I’m not going to lie dear readers, but I actually had a slight inkling of what it might contain.  I fumble it open, and sure enough I spy a scribbled note inside, with a kinder chocolate to keep it company.  I am elated to report, that I had received my first teacher-student-after-class-note, with email address and the quite wonderful sentiment: “if you write to me, well that would make my day.”  I had a beamer on for the rest of the afternoon.

Of course the jokers came out in force, with plenty of age/gender gags, but it’s not going to dampen my spirits.  Actually not much did, until I shared my joy into the facebookasphere.  At the risk of sounding like an arse, I experienced quite a remarkable phenomena.  No sooner had I boasted of my apparent success with an attractive female student, than two girls who I ‘m actually very interested in (and who have shut me down previously for quite unrelated reasons), “liked” my comment.  There their names were, burning into my eyes, slapping my face with the wet kipper of rejection, wiping it clean with the tissue of optimism.  Signalling it’s OK for me to let go…

Now what the fuck is that all about?  Wait a minute!  THAT’S NOT THE REACTION I WANTED! YOU’RE SUPPOSED TO BE WEEPING FOR OUR LOST FUTURE TOGETHER!  YOU SHOULD BE BOOKING THE NEXT TRAIN TO BUDAPEST TO THROW YOURSELF AT MY ANKLES AND LET ME DRAG YOU DOWN THE STREET BEGGING ME NOT TO MAKE A HORRIBLE MISTAKE!  YOU’RE NOT MEANT TO ENCOURAGE ME TO FIND SOMEONE BETTER THAN YOU BECAUSE YOU THINK I DESERVE IT AND YOU’RE “NOT GOOD ENOUGH” FOR A NICE GUY LIKE ME…?!”

I use the term “nice guy” loosely for comic and poetic effect.  Women eh?  Oh well, beggars can’t be choosers.  Right now if I fell into a barrel of nipples I’d come out sucking my thumb.

 

 

 

I’ll wait a day and I’ll send her a desperate email.

 

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Bitter; adjective. Cynical; adjective. Cupid; noun and bastard.

Thursday 14 February

I’ve just got in from another day of hell learning how to teach English.  I have been told a dozen more words and other such terminology I’ve never heard of.  I cannot explain tenses.  I don’t know what a gerund is.  I had to look up the words for this title to see what form they were.  What’s worse is every non-native speaker has got it down backwards, which makes me feel like a fud.  There are some serious gaps in my knowledge that some damn teacher will have to answer for.  Where was I when they were handing out grammar brains?  Was I smoking weed behind the bike shed?  Did I black out from ages 13 to 16?  I have a vague recollection of learning how to stress syllables with Shakespeare, which was followed by getting pelted with Smarties during break time.  Writing “I must not let other people bully me” as lines on a blackboard just didn’t cut it for my grasp of dangling modifiers.  My brain cells are dead.

So too is my love life, which has of late taken a turn for the non-existent.  Granted there isn’t much love to be found when you’re studying, researching, and attempting to teach for the first time for twelve-hour days, but this is ridiculous.  It’s going to force me into the temporary warm embrace of cocaine and hookers.  I’ve even been too exhausted to have a wank.  The only post I get from  dating websites is to tell me there has been no “action” on my page for a while.  No shit Sherlock.  Thank you for the gross understatement.

I’ve been wearing the same jeans for over a week as the washer has broken down, and my good white shirt has been stained blue at the cuffs.  My one hoodie is riddled with bobbles, and I’m convinced I have rosacea.  I desperately need to get to a gym, otherwise I’m in danger of being thrown back into the sea.  Some guy chipped my tooth with a pint glass.  There’s too much ginger hair in my crap beard.  First world problems.

In short, dear reader, and as ever, Valentines day has me in my usual twisted mood.  If there was an equivalent of a Scrooge for these 24 hours of the devils own creation from the seventh circle of hell, manifested with the heartbreaking lonely scream of  a wailing banshee with a paper cut on her tongue, look no further than yours truly.  Bah lovebug.  At least I understand that “relationship” is past tense.

 

 

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S.A.D

Thursday 07 February

Having a series of people cancel their planned visits to see you/Budapest and being told by someone you highly regard that the only reason they liked you was because they were hung up on someone else, all within the space of a couple of days has its draw backs.  I also start my TEFL course next week which I’m slightly nervous about, with teaching practice as early as day two.  In short, the only thing I have to look forward to right now is The Man of Steel.  I have also shaved my goatee thing off because it was just getting ridiculously ginger.  I am over halfway through the Smallville series.  I keep losing at online chess.  Oh and my one night out a week thing has totally failed and I’m on the sauce.  First world problems.

That’s about it folks!  Cheery bye!  Hope you’re all having as much fun as I am…! Oh no wait now.  Valentines day is coming!  Yay!  Deep joy.  If anyone needs me I’ll be locked in the bathroom with a bottle of whiskey, a shotgun and a gram of smack.

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It’s been a while dear readers…

Tuesday 29 January

Alright so it’s definitely been a while hasn’t it?  Like nearly a month.  Why you ask?  Because I’ve been a lazy sod.  Also nothing spectacular of note has taken place because for the next couple of months I’m going to be a boring fart.  I’m going back to school.  Outside of that I will be watching the entire back catalogue of Smallville episodes in preparation for The Man of Steel release in the summer.  Debauchery has taken a back seat.

At least it was meant to.  Right up until Australia day/Burns night last Friday, when things went a little off the rails.  I pulled a muscle in my stomach trying to shimmy my kilt around my waist.  A couple of hours later I looked in a mirror to discover my face covered in paint, while not going to bed or eating anything other than the ice from my vodka for 24 hours.  I remember kissing a very attractive girl from Northern Ireland.  Some of you may recall what happened the last time that occurred…

Back to the hostel I shuffled after taking guests out on the town, only to be greeted with a psycho-bitch-crazy-fruit-loop worker who kept asking me what I was doing there and what my contribution was.  I provided a sound explanation of exactly what I had been doing (which was a damn sight more than most), but  after what seemed like an age of her repeating herself, not letting me get a word in edge ways, throwing melodramatic stress fits and providing some dodgy translation to someone who wasn’t even the hostel boss, I reached the end of my tether and packed it in.  Oh yeah I forgot to mention I started working in a hostel a while back.  Anyhoo, I then proceeded to write a strongly worded letter of complaint regarding her conduct and how I believed she was on smack.  A copy is available on request.  Let me tell you the laptop keys were smoking with vicious, scathing prose.  This was two days ago, so I’ve calmed down enough to the point where I probably won’t even send it.  The hostel is on its knees, it’s going backwards, yet staff are employed who clearly have a screw loose and no scooby what’s going on.  Good luck to them.  If it’s still open by the time I leave Budapest with that calibre of “employee”, I will eat my scrunched up fedora in my guitar bag.  I ‘unliked’ them on facebook too.  That’ll show ‘em.

So I find myself a week away from beginning my intensive, four-week teaching English course.  It’s costing a small fortune, but if I even manage to pass, it should open a few doors for earning some decent money while traveling, thus keeping me on the road that little bit longer.  Now I ‘m round the corner in a new (much better) hostel, desperately seeking cheap, short-term accommodation.  It’s a minefield out there, but I will tell you this; if you can manage to earn either GBP or US/Aussie dollars in a country like Hungary, you’re on easy street.  It’s cheap as chips.  I’m talking a room in a nice flat for around £150 a month all-inclusive.  The problem is I’m not earning at the moment, so it’s going to dent the balance a little, feel a tiny bit sore, and make me feel guilty about those seven weeks in Medellin, Colombia…

For the next wee while then dear readers it’s all hands to the pumps, and the nose firmly in English books.  Honestly I don’t know where I was when they handed out the grammar brains, but it’s going to be enjoyable to dissect this language I love so much, and hopefully in a month I will have a nice shiny certificate that says I can charge what I want to Japanese businessmen to talk with a native English speaker, and then after they can solicit me for sex. I can’t wait to abuse my position of power, just like Robin Williams in Good Morning Vietnam:

“Vietnamese ladies no friends.”

…Well we’ll just see about that.

 

Oh yes I’m also trying to grow a beard.  Well it’s more like a goatee, and I think it looks alright, however there is an alarming number of gingers hairs present.  I am considering termination of project, because my chin looks like a squirrels’ arse.

 

 

 

 

 

(Disclaimer for future teaching English employers: the last paragraph was a joke.  Apart from the beard bit.)

 

 

 

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