Tuesday, July 27, 2004
My back still troubles me...
I’ve started reading Midnight’s Children as of last night (20 pages in thus far, 20 dence, prose-filled pages composed of non-sequiteurs and half memories and fabulous imagery and flights of fancy about people with big noses and tangential stories about grandfathers and doctors and boatmen), and the book mark, which has been its bookmark, unmoved and unmoveable, for, not four years since I bought the book in Northampton Waterstones, but just over one year, since I bought Fictions and The Dice Man in Exeter University bookshop, is the receipt for these two later books, revealing that they were bought on the 5th of the 5th 2003 and cost me some £16 (but I did not mind because I was sure I would enjoy and benefit from both), and upon this receipt are scribbled two words conjoined into one word, brokensaints, and I do not for the life of me understand what this means even though it is scribbled in my own hand, which is a hand that can only scribble and never scribe because it is unseemly and messy and distracted and presses down far too hard upon the paper it is marking, as if it wants to rip apart the pulp, because I always held my pen wrong as a child, and despite the gift of triangular rubber sheath after triangular rubber sheath to envelop my pens and pencils as a schoolboy in order to try and make me clutch the pen or pencil as a pen or pencil should be clutched, I could never grasp how to grasp as one should grasp, and even though I was a better childhood draughtsman than my peers no one was ever satisfied with how I held my pen, least of all me, because writing for any length of time would cause my hand to cramp: thus I was very pleased to begin writing on computers, because, although I use only three fingers and am about as far from normal or standard touch-typing as possible, I am still a faster typist than most people I know. (The ending of that sentence is long overdue.) But this note has me confused, as does another scribbled on the back of a train ticket, exclaiming banana fish, and another which says something I cannot now recall and which was scribbled somewhere else and hastily shoved into my wallet or a book so as to exist as an aide memoir for some future point when I would understand what this biblical reference or quote from someone or description of something meant, and it would inspire me to write something beautiful and slightly odd and place it here for you to read, only as often as not I throw away the train tickets and sandwich receipts without ever scanning the rear of them for scribbled pointillisms of everyday life waiting to be fleshed out into panoramic vistas: either that or, when I do find them, I have no recollection of what they mean.
Little recollection now exists of the panic that has stricken my darker moments for the last six weeks, because I am able to stand without contorting before walking, able to step into the bath in order to shower without an ominous pull-pop, able to contemplate the action of kicking a football again, and soon, maybe even this week, even if, occasionally, during that form of intercourse in which I am dominant (envelopment by a woman rather than penetration by a man being generally favoured), there is, as I move my hips, the slipping in-and-out-of-position not of sex but of my, well, it seems trite and punning to say it but say it I shall, fucked hip/pelvis/groin/thigh, sharply on the left side, as if a muscle is being pulled out of position and then pushed back into position, only the pops or clicks never actually returned it to the right place because in the right place there was little short of agony: but even if that disjoint and rejoint exists during intercourse, it is touch wood (oh please, please, don’t be wrong, don’t be wrong) only existing there and even there it is much less pronounced than it was 3, 4, 5, 6 weeks ago. The bruised shin/foot/ankle, the twisted knee, the sprained ankle, the vicious, still-pink-purple-after-all-these-years Astroturf scars covering my knees, the elbow in the face, the bloodied nose or lip: these injuries are nothing as compared to the panic that beset me when a simple pulled muscle, in my groin, reaching, jumping, stretching for a ball in flight to trap it in mid-air with my left foot after already feeling a twinge, began to *pop*, to pull, to make sitting and then standing a fearful experience lest it would never recover, after two days and then continue to do so for nearly six weeks. But it is not popping anymore. And I am going to be able to play football again soon, and it makes me feel like crying because it is such a simple pleasure but I love it so, and the thought of being fucked at 25 and never able to play again was too much to bear. The relief, when combined with the relief of that other thing two weeks ago, is, literally, a weight being lifted, and I promise now to take better care of myself, to lose that extra stone that causes strain upon my knees because I will insist on playing in the same manner as I did when I was nine years younger and 42 pounds lighter (give or take, actually just take, a few pounds, because I am not quite thirteen stone, and can still probably run harder and longer than you, and be complaining when other people want to stop kicking and running despite them being fitter than me [I never smoked, you see], and maybe this fucking crazy dietbook will work, eh Orkle?) and could run forever, so much so that my brother bought me a fantastic football which was black and named the curfew ball because I would have to come home and stop playing when it got dark (but this just forced us to be ingenious and [I kid you not] I insisted that we carry torches and play on past twilight and nightfall even though it was both insane and invisible). But yes, my hip is almost fixed. I shall warm-up even more thoroughly before playing every time now. Lest it happen again.
That song-by-song thing you wanted, some of you? A couple more weeks. I am being consumed by the [hype] machine. But rest assured that each day it is a different tune that I am having running through my head when I wake up. Rest assured that The Bends and A Northern Soul come to mind, but bigger, and more full of love, and more tuneful, and that this is both a breakthrough and a realisation.
7/27/2004 09:05:00 am