Monthly Archives: December 2011

2011: THE YEAR IN REVIEW (no score, because I’m not even jokingly giving it 7/10)

Last day of 2011, so time to do some form of retrospective look back thing about how Awesome To The Max it’s all been.

Except it hasn’t. It’s been shit. There have been good parts, but generally speaking they’ve been massively outweighed by the seemingly endless, unforgiving, unrelenting wave of putrid shite that has aimed itself directly at my face (and gone up my nose a bit).

Sure, I went to Summerslam again and went to Hooters in Hollywood; I went to Tokyo and didn’t eat too much freak bastard food (and had a lot of canned cold coffee); I had Good Times at Groezrock and sat next to Milo from Descendents (when I still had my Milo Descendents glasses); Amsterdam was great, if a little hazy; some other stuff probably happened; SUIT UP; losing three stone helped me wheeze less.

But the bad points, which were bad so I don’t want to list them, pissed me off far more than the good points lifted me. From being dumped at the start of the year it seemed to be downcockinghill, somehow, from there. And try as I might to fix it, I’m still fucking broke – and it’s mainly my fault, which makes it even more annoying. Yeah, and I can’t even think how to put other issues through the year into polite, non-judgemental, still-respecting-privacy of others terms. So I won’t.

But hey, it’s a new year tomorrow. New year, new start and all that.

I don’t really get people segmenting their thoughts, hopes and dreams up into different years. Just because one date says 2011 after it and 2012 the next day doesn’t mean it’s a different world. It’s still the same. The same mistakes will be made, the same people will piss you off, the same shit will happen, the same routines will carry on. Just because it’s a different year doesn’t mean anything is actually different.

Still, I’m willing to play the game and have a cut-off point of midnight tonight. Let’s start afresh 2012. Do something different. Be a better person. Buy a gun. Shoot some public places up. Get arrested for making jokes on your blog. Be Spartacus.

But maybe 2011 will be saved – maybe this evening someone will give me a billion pounds, or tell me everyone I hate is dead, or tell me I’m finally going to get paid loads of money to sit at home in my pants playing and then writing about playing all the games I haven’t played yet – old and new. A man can dream.

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Home straight, again

Turns out tomorrow sees me entering the final ten blogs I’m going to do. Probably. Well, it definitely enters the final ten of the second year, but I don’t know if I’m going to carry it on. Last year I was convinced I would end it as of 365 entries, but I decided to do a show of support to someone new and continue.

They lasted about three weeks, if that. Sigh.

But, as I am who I am, I said I’d do it for the year so I have done. It hasn’t been great. In fact, it’s been downright messy at times, and a lot more honest than I honestly intended it to be HO HO. Honest honest honest.

But I think it’s clear for all to see I’m a bit bored of doing these. There’s only been a few entries over the last collection of months that I’ve actually given a shit about enough to put effort or thought into. So I’m probably not going to carry on.

Then again, I don’t really know. I’m used to it, it’s part of my routine. I just think I need to do more fun things, or start caring about what happens in the world again, then I’d have something interesting to write about.

Or maybe I’ll just keep on doing it and keep on writing filler, last-minute nonsense like this. WHO KNOWS.

I think, actually, if I had some form of structure to it then I’d be far more inclined to keep it going. I might quit my job and write a single blog a day full time. WHO KNOWS.

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It’s still a policy

There appears to be a glitch in the logic pistons of many human beings, at least according to a couple of things that have recently happened to me. Turns out people don’t expect others to be honest, or nice, or helpful in any way. Which leads me to believe that people expect others to be horrible, thieving, scumbag monsters of death from hell.

So I’m tempted to live up to their expectations.

A few weeks ago I was going for a haircut OH WHAT A LIFE I LEAD when I stopped at an automated teller machine (“ay tee em”), ostensibly to withdraw paper cash with which to fund aforementioned service. There was a man getting out moolah before me, so I stood and waited. Maybe it was the light rain in the air, maybe it was his downright idiocy, or maybe it was the fact I was stood one inch behind him, breathing down his neck and whispering things about “robbing him up well good”, but something must have made him lose concentration.

Whatever it was, it meant he walked away briskly, only for his cash to pop out of the machine after he had made his escape. I leapt in and, without thinking, grabbed the money. I whirled around on my heels and, using all the might my diaphragm could muster, bellowed (“said”) “excuse me mate”. It was pretty epic, truth be told.

Anyway, he turned around, his eyes widened at the sight of me holding a wodge of cash that was technically (“actually”) his, he made a comment about “forget my head if it wasn’t attached” or something, then he put his hand on my shoulder and sincerely thanked me for being so honest. My brain’s reaction?

Irritation. Irritation that a man would be surprised or find it so out of the ordinary for someone to be honest that it deserved such a ‘you did good, you know?’ reaction. Well done brain, you’re mental.

Then on Tuesday I was arriving in King’s Cross by train. I stood to gather my things and, while doing so, noticed a Blackberry (phone, not fruit) had been dropped from the seat in front of me. The guy who had been sat there wasn’t there anymore, and I couldn’t see him waiting to get off the train. I grabbed it and instantly made my plans to sell it on to the highest bidder and by that I mean ‘give it to the guard’, when I noticed the guy who had been in front of me had somehow ended up in the thoroughfare behind me.

I whirled around on my heels and, using all the might my diaphragm could muster, bellowed (“said”) “excuse me mate, is this yours?” It was pretty epic, truth be told.

He looked confused, patted his pockets, looked worried and then said “yes”, before taking the phone from me and thanking me profusely.

And my brain’s reaction to this? More irritation. I don’t know, maybe I’m insane.

But fuck it, at least I’m honest.

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The unforgivable mistake

I’m not sure how lazy this makes me, but on returning home yesterday I arrived back to a flat in a state I simply do not experience these days. Never before in the enlightened age has it come to this, yet here I was – living proof that the times I thought I had left behind me were, in fact, not at all left behind me.

No, not the piles of rubbish all over the floor. They add to the ambience of the place. And not the tons of crap everywhere either. We’ve already established I’m a terrible hoarder and that I have more stuff than I do room.

No, this was something altogether worse. This was… I find it hard to even say it. It’s embarrassing. It’s sickening.

I was out of milk.

I’m sorry. I am.

But on returning and seeing this – this thing that hadn’t happened for years until today – I had to act quickly, decisively and simply: turn around, go back out of the house, walk to the shop, buy some milk. I did not do that.

I can make all the excuses I want: I was tired from travelling; I had just taken my shoes off; I was on the beer anyway. But none of them will ever make up for the fact that, for the last 36 hours or however long I’ve been back, I have been without milk.

Fortunately, I’m now getting the tea and coffee cravings to such a degree that I have to leave the house. If I look like a smackhead looking for his next fix, you’ll know why.


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And here we begin the first proper day of my time off – the first time in a long, long time I’ve had time off with nothing coming up: no work to do, no trip 12 hours after you get back from another country, no freelance pending, no stress, nothing to think about. There’s food in the kitchen (rice, mainly) and games to be played. There’s sleep to be had and a dressing gown (with many coffee and food stains on it) to be worn all day every day.

I am aware I am not an EMT, a stockbroker, a police officer, a shop worker, a vet, a bounty hunter, a space cowboy, a professional homosexual impersonator, a dog whisperer, a woman whisperer, a marmoset whisperer, a Quetzalcoatl whisperer or any other job that actually matters. But that doesn’t mean I don’t get tired out by it – mentally and physically.

So yeah, now the week of sitting, with a couple of parties, begins. If you get in touch with me, expect responses constantly mentioning that I’m in my pants. If you follow me on Twitter (@PlayMagIan), expect me to be tweeting a lot more, usually about how I’m in my pants. If you’re on my friends lists on PS3 and 360, expect to see me on there a lot more probably replaying Skyrim (also: in my pants).

Now is my time to shine – now is my time to show the world what I am really, truly good at: not doing anything. It’s what I was made to do, and one day I will find a way to be comfortable, or make a living, doing just that. YUSS.

(Thus concludes the batch of blogs I’ve written on the train. They will return to their normal velocity (and lack of quality) as of tomorrow. We’re almost in the home straight now)

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The anatomy of a long train journey, and how to cure the insanity that comes with it

It be odd how the simple act of having a break in a journey makes it feel as much shorter as it does. My trips to Manchester in the past (a place which I am annoyed I no longer have to go to: not for the reasons people might expect, but because I’m missing out on all the brilliance that is Mario Balotelli – he went to church in Chorlton on Christmas. I COULD HAVE BEEN THERE. Stupid job in the south stopping me from meeting my new footballing hero. Also he could have given me a thousand pounds for no real reason. Or ten thousand, I’m not picky) were always to bloody long.

Five hours, usually more thanks to trains being utterly shit, in one sitting is not a Super Fun Time. If anything, it’s a bit of shit time. I may have complained about it in the past, I’m not sure. But switching it up a bit, like I am doing here by going Leeds-London-Bournemouth, makes it easier on the brain. Here’s a quick summation of how the brain works on a five-plus hour journey:

Hour 1

Hour 2
Yeah I gots some food and drink left and I’m still watching something and I’m not bored of it yet and there was somebody sat next to me for ten minutes but they’ve fucked off now fortunately.

Hour 3
Is this over yet oh wait no there’s two hours left at the very least but the train hasn’t moved in twenty minutes and I’m bored of watching things and the headphones hurt my ears and I think I’m going to stab this fat stinky bastard sat next to me and this isn’t worth this much money I wish Jon Snow would ask a question I suggested on Channel 4 News and ohwhyisn’tthisoveryet.

Hour 4
Brain numb. Ass painful. Sitting not fun. Can’t stand up, people will steal seat and/or belongings. Hatred rising. Been coughed on or at so many times. Other people: they are indeed hell. The train company should pay me to put up with this shit. I hate everything.

Hour 5
Itchy. Tasty.


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How to make people not sit next to you

I am currently on a train, hence writing a load of blogs in quick succession (WWE TLC is on to the left of this window, of course). To the right of me, on one of the few unreserved seats in the train is sat… NOBODY. I am quite good at making it so people don’t actually want to sit next to me, so I have decided to write a quick guide you can refer to (quickly) to make sure the scum (“other people”) stay well away from you.

Look like me
If you can’t yet buy Ian Masks in shops around the world (you should be able to, and if you can’t, it’s a load of shit), you’re going to have to hope you have my face. If you don’t have my face, you can try and adopt the Ian face. It’s simple: just never smile, look like you’re about to kill everyone in the local area, sneer derisively in the direction of everyone else alive and generally just be Full Of Hate.

Use the table next to you
Right now I have some apple juice and Wine Gums on the little table next to me, as I have no room on my own little table. This isn’t too in the way, nor is it really taking the piss in any way, or something. Anyway, people see it there then think there’s someone sat there THERE ISN’T HA HA THE FOOLS.

Look even more like me
See above, then times it by two.

Smell like me
Pretty self explanatory.

Be a tramp
It helps, I’ll be honest.

And there’s your top tips for the day.

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Gotta get a dog, still

Unfortunately, Christmas Day contact with a pooch of hilarious… ness has made my desire to own a canine of the caninical variety stronger than ever. I am now trying to formulate a plan of attack for how I would be able to effectively look after a pooch of my own and not end up killing it.

Probably with a hammer (that I received for Christmas).

I work every day, I go fairly early and get back fairly late, so a puppy that needs attention is out of the question. I live in a house where the landlord is borderline insane and Very Unlikely to allow pets, so owning a pet in this flat is out of the question. Also I’m a broke-ass punk all of the time and dogs need you to invest in things for them so they don’t die, so being able to afford anything while owning a dog is out of the question.

Basically, it’s out of the question.

But I reckon there’s a way – I just need to sit down and come up with a plan. I’ll probably paint said plan, or something. But I need suggestions. I could quit my job and become a farmer, meaning not only would I be able to earn loads of money by selling my milk to Asda (don’t ask where the milk comes from) but I could make the dog a working dog and spend time with it so it wouldn’t feel neglected. Also it could hunt beavers for nutritional reasons, meaning I wouldn’t have to buy it food thus saving me time and money.


I might just build one out of soiled hammocks, though. That or re-buy Nintendogs. Hmm. There’s a way through this, I’m sure.

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I’m only half kidding when I say I want Lego for Christmas, or at any gift-giving occasion. I mean, I don’t really want it because I’m unlikely to ever use it. The only presents I will use are things like socks, pants, mugs, coffee, food, games, hammers, dogs, beer, beef, beans, bees, beads and a few others.

But as a present, Lego is great. If I ever get into the habit of buying presents for people – likely children (not in a paedo way, I hope) – it will be Lego. Lego Star Wars, Lego Indiana Jones, Lego Pirates, Lego ALL OF THEM. Because they’re brilliant. It’s brilliant. Whatever.

Also, it’s not Legos. Stop that, Americans. Silly.

But it’s not just a nostalgic thing – Lego is genuinely great as a toy, straddling the gap between strict instruction and free creativity as it does. Make a pirate ship according to the hella long instructions, taking ages to get everything spot on and make sure it’s all spiffy and perfect.

Then when you make somewhere for the pirate ship to invade and ransack, just go a bit off-piste and make up some random shit. It’s brilliant.

And so much better than lame-ass Meccano. That stuff’s too prescriptive and – even though it can only work one way – it doesn’t even fit together properly half the time. Crap.

I got no Lego for Christmas.

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Speedwrite: GO

For some reason I’ve just set myself the task of writing this – yesterday’s blog – in the time remaining I have on this free wi-fi on the train. i.e. about seven minutes. If it wasn’t for a happy man telling me something he claimed to be a fact, I would still be in smelly old London, set to wait two hours before I could go anywhere.

It seems my newfound train-based celebrity means I get special treatment, though, and according to this man who I’ve just realised might have been trolling me on an industrial level super off peak tickets means bollock all until 2 January. I’M MAKING TIME.

Unless it was just a cheeky member of the public wearing a high-vis jacket, standing behind an information desk and calling me “sir” – then maybe it’s just a japester conning me out of the extra £40 I’ll have to pay for the ticket.

I have my phone wedged under my crotch on the seat right now. It is an odd place to put it, as there are many other places it can go. Also I’m confused about why it seems to have turned into fucking monsoon season outside, but then I haven’t actually stepped out of any kind of building or carriage for the last three or four hours oh god where am I what’s going on.

The hangover isn’t as bad as it was, though. I need to learn that “two pints” means two pints, not “sit there all night setting the world to rights and genuinely talking non-stop for about 10 minutes solid. Even if I am the most interesting person alive. Also: drunk.

Anyway, going home for the first time in three years tomorrow. There’s a blog for you. Later. For now, I only have three minutes left so I’m going on Reddit.


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