It's all I've got left! My 2nd kid is to be born anytime between here and then.  By kid, obviously I mean baby goat! The chaos my first leaves in her wake is apocalyptic. I can tidy up a chair and turn to tidy and neaten another, just as I greet my sofas in admiration of declutterness, mini me has taken it upon herself to refill what I was apparently clearing for her! It's my fault though. Generosity in my family is rife and toys, art supplies, books, games are thrust in abundance at unsuspecting children, grown or otherwise! I don't mind throwing stuff out or giving stuff away; my wife on the other hand, likes things.  If she's bought it or received it, I believe she thinks it should have a home. Our home! That may be ok for people of affluent means and homes like museums. I happen to own an increasingly condensing corridor of clutter! Me, I'd live in my pants. A telly/PlayStation podium in the centre of the room next to a very comfy couch (Not too soft though!).  No wires in sight; all cabling would be hidden under the floors and in the walls.  A leafy pot plant for all my oxygen needs.  A perfectly placed table just big enough to fit a drink with some device for holding snacks (I love an invention). This refreshment station must be optimal for arm length,  unflinching under the mightiest of gaming spasms and incapable of holding other people's shit.  It's not that I'm not a sharer, but tables are the worst in my house.  You can look at a pile of papers on any surface, blink and that pile will have doubled or tripled in size instantly!  I could be the only one in and still this happens.  I have a papergeist! This is wishful thinking as I think everyone should have their own room that they look after and then congregate in one uber-relaxing, games room with cinema tv for a weekend family movie.  A place with fish as a focal point;  light and airy with small indoor plants . I've never been a plants person. My parents are; i could never see the draw.  We turn into parental resemblances though,  so from an early age I have always wondered when this horticultural instinct would bed in? Having suffered with chronic hayfever since the summers of school, plants and I, up until recently, didn't see eye to eye. I gave up dairy.  It's easy, apart from halloumi and mozzarella.  I...i just can't.  Milk, butter? Don't touch it! Why? My sister studied nutrition at college and read that dairy can restrict the sinuses.  I've been sans cheese now for 3 years and can attest to this theory. I'm not a diet nut but like to have a semi grasp on what is entering my body. (I'm very tired and the morning playlist is sending me off. Not something you really want on the way home.  I snore really loud! Rich Mayor of Captain Trips has just sung me one of his acoustic numbers. The CD it comes from is called Decade and to prove it's worth, Rich won the opportunity to perform one of his songs onstage with Joey Cape in Bristol.  It really is that good.  Check it out) since chopping the ched my sinus system's health has been an interesting development. Formerly,   early summer was a massive bummer. The amount of times i tried to pull my eyes from my head, uncountable! Tablets, sprays, tissues, drops, you name it,  I've had it.  The dairy drop is the thing. The first year I didn't expect anything, so continued with my best combo of spray and drops. Discovered that I was probably lactose intolerant all along,  pah! Cut a long boring story short, last year my hayfever was pretty much gone.  Barring the odd sneeze and weird sensation in a head cavity somewhere. Gone.  This year will be the teller.  I'm hoping for zero symptoms.  If the winter carries on like this I'm certain to be hayfreever (mental I just slapped my forehead for that wordplay. I'm so sorry). So,  I could probably be a dad (still/ again) by the next time I write.  I best go and get some sleep in preparation eh? 




 Ah man, the weather! Enough already! I feel better than I have in ages yet there's something tugging at my coattails daily.  A lot of people probably dismiss it as being weak and poppycock. But this weather can now firmly do one.  I hate it.  We want shorts and when do we want them... NOW! I can't recall multiple consecutive nice days. 

Why am I sad? Good weather brings the opportunity to buy new t-shirts and shorts.  New t-shirts means I'm attending gigs and watching bands and buying merch.  It was once becoming a serious addiction.  I started this trend in my mid teens; I had to come away from a show with something to show for it. I've had to curb my obsession in recent years but if you're in a band, I'd certainly suggest coaxing me to your merch stand for a bit of material flirting.  That said,  it needs not be a t-shirt.  It's difficult in a fledgling band actually affording said t-shirts to flog to afford the beer/bab combo (as Müg so often did. We never went hungry!). It would be awesome to see different merch on the tables.  We tried Müg mugs which sold out fairly quickly and i purchased and lost a Darko bobble-hat, much to my dismay. Darko: Think beards, think awesome riffage, think lovely guys, think punk rock hardcore to the max.  They have their own beard oil! They wrote one of the best songs I've ever heard; 'timepieces and lock shaped hearts' sings itself to my balls and they love it (My balls... probably not Darko!). From Darko we gain Lockjaw Records with a wealth of clout in the punk rock scene.  Seriously, check out their store as they've got some of the top UK acts. 

I'm tired today so that is where I leave it for now.  Stupid mat hit the pillow at 12.30 and was back up five hours later. I'm not expecting too much from me today; sorry work!


Soooooo... that was an interesting one.  Let me tell you a little story.  I came off my bike remember? So,  upon fucking my groin I decided to abandon my bike by chaining it to a street sign.  Well,  some skally cint (cunt is not that useful a word at describing villains these days.  I'm coining cint, pronounced sint, as it's close and you can still add a lot of venom when cursing little fuckheads like these!) opted to nick said scooty and rag it without my permission.  I did all the necessaries: cops,  local pound,  insurance, etc. The insurance company wanted me to send in all the deets asap, which I proceeded to procrastinate all over.  Fast forward to this Saturday just gone,; I receive 2 letters from a nearby constabulary proving my skally theory and issuing me with fines for speeding. I call, i email, i sorted.  So, yesterday the procrastination of insurance deets came to a close as I finally posted the damned documents. Upon arrival home I find a letter threatening 7 days left and we close your claim. "Phew! Glad I got that sent of when I did!" Zzz zzz zzz morning. 9.30. Phone call from Bobby on the beat informing me that they've found my bike at a pound somewhere; I can go and pick it up.  He furthered the convo with "I would've phoned you yesterday but wanted to check the bike was ok and not chopped to bits." "Fair play", I said. "What do I need to take with me to collect it?",  I said, suddenly realising that the documents I had sent just half a day ago was all the required docs for my reunion with Scooty! Typical! Fortunately,  I don't think I've gotta pay anything out, so I should get full whack when I sell.  I'm selling it. It's now tainted. Time for four wheels...

Anybody want to buy a bike? 




Why do it? Kid taken care of,  friends are about,  deserve a night off = curry night. Sweet.  Nope,  spicy as fuck! I'm suffering.  This train journey could be my undoing.  I can feel it... lurking.  The swelling and sloshing in my stomach seems to gurgle "bog roooooll!".

So, fashion.  I'm sat next to someone who has clearly paid attention in America's next top model class.  She looks good.  I look... hmmm. Passable. And it'll never change.  In the winter,  I'm clad in 1 of about 4 outfits.  These are no effort mix of Jeans + band t-shirt + burnt tapes jumper/random hoodie (If you know not about the burnt tapes, get in the know.    They sing super sexy songs with their super sexy looks. Raspy, raw melodies that rip your heart up.  You can pick up their vinyl and digital download from the umlaut store or if you like CD, head over to Lockjaw records and badger them for some sweet goods.) This happens to be what I'm wearing right now.  I have my Fu Manchu t-shirt on; I like to have favourite things and this is one.  Love the band,  love the tee. Come the slightest hint of summer though I strip as quickly as possible into over-the-knee shorts + band t-shirt.  Cool? yeah! Especially when it hasn't quite turned spring yet! I was out the other day with shorts,  band t-shirt and big winter coat on. Hey,  if Burnt/Dank Tone can do it! It was sunny so don't judge too hard. One thing that stays the same through my dressing routine is my shoes.  I used to get shin splints while playing footie and then after that I'd get what can only be described as morning bus stop heel! Every morning,  "Ooooooouch! What the..." whispered under my breath for the sake of my sleeping sidekick.  Think multiple bits of glass sticking into your heel at 5 am. Not fun! It would last about 10 - 20 seconds and then like nothing had ever happened I could go about my day.  I started running in preparation of looking overly passable for a soon to be wifekick! It was actually the only way to get into work on time on a Sunday at that point (Also to avoid a lift from the most annoying man the world has ever known. Jeez he was a pleb!). My dad was a runner; London marathons, new York marathon,  half marathons,  he even cycled round Nepal! So who better to ask about running than him? He said read a book about the Tarahumarans; a tribe of Colombian running people who live in the steepest ravines, if memory serves me well. They can run 400 miles no biggy and guess what they wear? Flip flops! That's right,  they cut up tyres and tie them to their feet. If you search barefoot running shoes, they are available from a few ultra modern yet authentic Kickstarter campaign hipster (and other new world buzz words to boot)  online shoe shops for an inexplicable amount money.  For a bit of tyre and string.  Upwards of 50 notes. For a bit of tyre and string!  Obviously,  the companies boast ergonomics and million year old science to quantify their business model. I was tempted until I found Merrell shoes. I had already owned a pair of the comfiest walking shoes known to man but this time it was different.  Life changing.  I researched this 'barefoot running' thang that the internet was getting interested in.  Not interested in enough to be overly helpful, but enough.  I looked at gait and how to run efficiently with least resistance.  All this research lead me to purchase a pair of gloves! Apparently,  shoes can now be gloves too! Must be a literal meaning or something? These shoes though! Like a hardy pair of socks with slight cushion under the ball of your foot, and plenty of room for "toe splay". All I can say is that ever since my legs haven't been the same.  I enjoyed the running so much and the ethos that as humans we shouldn't really be walking on (Dan Adriano just came on. I listen to his songs with my groin.  He really does do something to me.  I yearn to thrust myself at his song voice! Gross but necessary.) squishy heels to mask the problems caused by walking on squishy heels! I wasn't born with Nike air max on so why would I require a heel-to-toe differential? I took this to the next stage and now cannot and will not go back.  My calves look and feel as strong as a cheetahs (unfortunately,  minus the awesome spotty fur). One major setback; when merrell decides to stop manufacturing my all-time favourite shoe,  what is a boy to do? You see,  being a specialist shoe,  this means that any manufacturer of barefoot footwear can charge the earth and more for less material than the toe of an Ugg boot. I found one shop though.  £60 barefoot shoes.  XERO SHOES! Cool? Nah.  The flatest most painful shoes ever.  I developed a knee problem which sucked a big one if anyone did so much as look at it.  I begged Merrell to bring them back. "Bring back my precious shoes" i cryped (a combination of crying and typed. I just coined it. It happens often I'm sure!). And that they eventually did. Forevermore I shall be happy... until the next time! Don't get any ideas merrell!

I'm now listening to Billy Bragg - Back to Basics.  Cracking album of just a man, a microphone and an electric guitar.  The songs are perfect.  It contains one of my all-time favourite songs (definitely top 5), which is the Saturday boy.  Check it.  A newer favourite has lovingly oozed into my ears. It's called cupcake by Zach Quinn from PEARS.  The man does punk so well that it took me aback to hear his One Week Record so mellow and groovy.  If you haven't seen/heard Lagwagon frontie Joey Cape's newish record label,  make sure you do so soon. Full to the brim of great acoustic albums. I think i get 1 every couple of months for a piddly yearly subscription. Chris Cresswell of the Flatliners album entered straight into my top 20 albums. Do it.  You won't regret it. 

I'm going now



Ah hindsight...

...You wondrous thing. Life on earth does not allow for getting shit done. Now that I have started this cupboard of bendiness there is no going back; as snag after snag has set me back further and further.  Some snags are man-made (Mat-made!). I seem to book stuff in even though i know i can't possibly achieve all that i wish to.  I'm still learning. One day I'll practice putting all these life hacks (they're not even life hacks.  More like normal proceedings of a normal human being) into my day to day. I'm having a whale of a time though.  It's nice having the old man over to steer me past some of the blatant mistakes that I'm making and also to add some critical hindsight just as  we add the last shelf! "You know what we should've done? We should've made this as a cabinet and then just slid it into this hole! Voila!" Is something along the lines of what he said.  The man's a comedian. I really wish we'd started this father/son building thing a lot earlier, although I probably wouldn't have been ready.  Shan't moan though as some never have this level of comfortableness with their pa. He has this calmness about him which I used to have (Where the fuck did that go?). Putting lots of twos together, I continue to see that I am definitely Dave 2.0. The cover pic is how I left the cupboard on Saturday.  It now has doors that don't close quite right and shelves that not even the best of thieves could walk away with. Man,  they ain't coming down!

Morning playlist. It has been playing through all this waffle, and there was a moment during Pink Floyd that i thought that maybe you'd wanna know.  Now, whilst writing that, we've just missed Ray Rocket. My Vitriol.  I've been waiting to write about this.  One of my all-time musical things.  It's on both playlists as it is both continuation of sleep and end of the day celebration. Amazing.  The CD is called finelines, I think? I really should know.  But it's not the titles of music makes me fall in love. And that is exactly what me and this CD have. 

... Out of the box, 100 ft robot golf is not exactly what I was expecting.  It's clunky,  Japanesque and altogether not very good.  The premise is funny and could work; but I'm not here to review.  The virtual reality of the situation plonks you on the shoulder of a 100ft automaton that you control?! Yeah,  weird huh?  My initial thought was,  "haha , cool!"... until I moved.  Up we jumped! Down we came.  My stomach didn't have a fucking clue! He was sat in his usual gaming chair freaking out by what his pals,  the eyes, were experiencing.  A new experience for him.  A new experience for all of us. Sadly my stomach was the only one that was not enjoying this trip to the future.  I tried coaxing him round with "you've seen Ref Dwarf, right? I remember you liking the episode 'better than life'. No difference mate!". Sadly,  I could take no more. Off came the headset and with it my brain-function. Stood in my kitchen,  not sure whether I'm gonna vom or pass out; I feel sick as a dog. Instantly,  I blame the game.  I let the nausea subside and whacked the headset back on. A few experiences later and I'm feeling good again. "It was just that game! Ha, shit game!". RIGS: mechanized combat league. It's sport. It's shooty. It's... Amazing. The intro and menu screens are next level.  I feel as though I'm in a pit lane in tallest f1 car ever created. Lifted up to the playing arena through a hole in the floor; I'm excited like a young kingly hangdog on Easter morning (You should've seen it!  My aunt tells the story well. Every time I see her!) I'm running in a mech-suit. I'm jumping. I'm shooting. I'm scoring.  I'm turning... I'm, I'm, I'm tuuuuuuurniiiiing... eugh, I don't feel so good.  It takes a long time to feel right again.  I'm upset. £350 of ultimate awesome that I can't use.  I tried a few other demos and another 3 hours on headmaster and called it a day on what is one of the greatest inventions ever created.  The sadness consumes me.  

Talking of Consumed, did you hear that a certain little label have the uk release for their upcoming ep? That's right,  Umlaut Records are putting out one of the finest skate punk acts ever. My fingers were surgically attached to THPS through my teens and Heavy Metal Winner was burned in to my nervous system accordingly. Every time i press restart on the ps4 i can almost hear the song starting. And I LOVE it.  It's no secret that here at umlaut the feels for Consumed are strong. They were the first Fat band we booked for a show at the Unicorn a couple of years ago. A few more rocking shows since then and now this! The stuff of dreams! The new CD will blow your ear's ears off. I'm not going to go too much into it now.  Just,  if you're as excited as us for a new Consumed CD... watch this space. 

I'm changing trains now and 'calling Elvis,  is anybody home?" Dire straits. 

Laters taters



Twice a day?

I have 2 journeys. So, at the mo that's been 2 blogs per day.  Is this overkill? Is this like, binge blogging? I'm new to the world of blogging.  I've allowed it to gently pass overhead with other things such as "the news", virtual reality and fashion. Yes,  these are conscious decisions to ignore these rather all encompassing digests.

"The news" was binned years ago.  I read the metro on the way to work.  Barely awake at 6 am and I was being stabbed in the eye with lots and lots of reactionary tidbits to make me subconsciously emote. And emote I did, though not subconsciously.  I'd get angry at all the trivial drivel I was being fed. I partook in heated debates about things that i knew fuck all about from a minute single-minded viewpoint. I thought it was mine.  I thought it was real. Regurgitating tidbits of someone else's standing; dry-heaving masticated newspaper cuttings!  News for the sake of news was driving me insane.  These journo's all need paying no matter what words they write, right? News is important.  I no longer want to spend my life sifting through someone's bad day at the office to determine who I like and hate on any given day. 

NOFX;  as we're on the evening playlist.  I'm quite warm even though I'm wearing shorts as it's the first real day of sun that I can remember since mid 2017. I've still got my winter jacket on though;  I'm not that brave/stupid! Flatliners - Liver Alone now. This band saved me from a horrible period following the death of my father-in-law. Poignant in my saviour; Chris Cresswell rasply talked me though some very deep thoughts and emotions. Cheers Chris. 

Virtual reality is a rather sad engagement for me. Having secured a sold out pre-order of PlayStation's PSVR, I proceeded to get overly giddy at the thought that the future was at arms length.  Nothing could've prepared me for the sheer joy and ultimate dismay at discovering the actual 21st century and finding out that we are incompatible. I played headmaster for about 3 hours solid.  A simple football game that transports you to a footy pitch within a prison complex. You head the balls that are fired at you at various targets and amusing carnivalesque game stalls.  Amazing.  I was not at home anymore.  I was not even human as I couldn't see my flailing body.  I was floating consciousness. I was a manifestation of fun. Amazing. Launch day games (bad demos) were lacklustre bar a few.  Yet,  for some reason, because PSVR, everything was awesome.  Better than I'd seen before.  I bought 100ft robot golf and downloaded the demo of Rigs. Rigs = the coolest idea for a game since Gladiators on ITV was first aired.  This is where things went south...

Alkaline trio marks the end of this journey. 

Have a lovely weekend and I'll pick it up on Monday with bonus pictures of my homemade cupboards (hehehe he said bonus)




 ...Morning.  Morning playlist. Frank Sinatra is doing it his way and I'm thinking "Yeah Frank.  Do it your way mate."; he feels pretty passionate about it. You see, I've had sleep.  I feel pretty passionate about that too. You know when you've had a good night's sleep, and recently that hasn't happened.  Why was last night so good I hear murmured around the web? There was only one person in the bed.  Only one person to annoy me and that person was on his best behaviour and also fast asleep. All night.  I woke up before my alarm. I didn't regret the alarm for once.  I know it's Friday and there could be other factors at play.  I did fuck all last night.  Went out for a non veggy kebab.  I was veggy for a month.  It was great but I feel I wasn't doing it properly.  I'm not sure if it was the lack of meat nutrients in my bod that I hasn't replaced properly with veg alternatives? I felt weird.  Bad weird.  I don't want to be veggy. (Rocky Raccoon - Beatles. What a track.  The Beatles had a knack for writing any kind of song.  Having watched the 8 days a week documentary recently i bet it would've been a great band to be in.  The writing process looked like so much fun. Not that I'm complaining about Müg writing sessions. I can't think of anything better, but that's another story... and if we ever have another one I'll tell it to ya!) I want to eat healthily. I don't want chicken with breast implants,  crowded chicken or chicken in a cupboard! I want a hippy chick; peace and love and and all that. So local farm meat a couple of nights a week and a load of vegetables.  Veg curries are the way forward.  I got lucky one evening (ahhh Charly Bliss. Check em.  My mate Charlie said I'd like em.  They're not for everyone.  They're definitely for me though!) and didn't make a mess of it for once.  One of the best meals ever (overexaggeration). Was nice though. 

So Friday,  what do you have in store for us today? Well, in terms of umlaut,  you can now pre order the new dynamite dynamite CD Fangs from our webstore and also the new Eat Dirt., Welcome to Shithouse-on-sea. Both CD's are blinding; I do hope you at the very least check them out. (If you have something you'd like me to plug; send it my way. Doesn't have to be related to anything i do.  If i like it,  it'll go in. Somewhere. Maybe!)

Friday, Friday, Friday.  Fridays are a funny thing.  So many people relish Friday. I've known people that have had an ugly love for Friday 5.30. As it approaches they turn in to a different being.  A sort of Smeegalesque creature lurking in the shadows of the coat rack, anticipating the snap that is WEEKEND MODE. Fortunately,  I'm not one of those people. Unlike Garfield, I like Mondays. I like Tuesdays. I don't actually have a favourite day. Days are mainly a blur to me recently.  I definitely do too much and it's probably just too much fucking about, procrastinating. I may have already said,  I hope to pack that in.  I need to.  (Ben Kweller; his first album is one of my all time favourites.  He used to be in a pop punk band called Radish in the early nineties. He's a great songwriter and every song on Sha Sha is brilliant and enjoyable.  I like an enjoyable song.  It's not the same as a good song.  It's more wholesome; you can physically feel it. Hahaha I talk a load of bollocks!)

The morning playlist,  as I said is like a continuation of sleep and although I've had my Recommended Daily Allowance I still love the way Pink Floyd Is stroking my soul in it's purring pussy-cat wake-nap manner. Lovely. My stop is rapidly approaching and I've said all I'm going to say.  Let me know what you think of Dynamite Dynamite and Eat Dirt. 




Overuse of words

Evening playlist again.  Prodigy.  I'm very tired.  I did the usual head-jolting "YEAHI'MAWAKE!" thang at work.  I sit next to my boss.  He hasn't mentioned that he knows i fall asleep yet.  Ooh the suspense!

So if anyone is reading this,  you may or may not know who I am? A question I have asked myself recently.  My answer was not awe inspiring. My answer was I don't actually know anymore.  I think it's a good thing that I took the time to have a production meeting with myself.  This was before my health (mental and physical) took a break from looking after me. Maybe that was the reason for their absence? I'm not getting many answers from anywhere lately and I've figured that that is a great thing.  I've aged since being a baby; aged but still a baby. I've always wanted to do my own thing. Wanted to do loads of things.  (Rocco Lampones - S.O.S. Get on it.  One of my faves any time of day.) Too many things to do and only one immature, aloof babyman to do them.  I do plenty but nothing actually feels like I accomplish anything. I know I'm not the only one. So how do we tackle this?

I've started writing a blog.  I don't know if you noticed? I get on the train for an hour and a bit each morning and evening. I have chosen YOU to be my ear of bending; my pillow of least resistance; my pad of recycled usefulness (I could go on for hours labelling you). For this, my unsuspecting friend, I am grateful. I'm going to write until I have figured out what the fuck I'm going to do with my life. 

So I spoke to my friend Hulbertasaurus, who inspired me to put more fingers in the umlaut pie. His drive and get-done attitude is somewhat soul destroying for a babyman such as myself. Yet his surgical prowess in arse finger extraction is much to my wellbeing.  The last few days at work have been a blessing as it's been almost silent in the work department.  Brillo. The press releases for Dynamite Dynamite are a done thing and Eat Dirt.'s one is coming along nicely.  I was listening to Sarah and Mark of Mark Bell Illustration fame's podcast for Shout Louder whilst fucking about with the website and making this blog thing at least half noticeable. No one likes to feel like leper limb, so Hulbertasaurus, i tip my paleontologists hat to you. 

Brandenburg Gate - Anti Flag feat. Tim Armstrong.  Love it.  And that is where I'm leaving you today.  

My name is Mat. I'm 37. I'm a printer and a wannabe designer.  I've got a lovely wife and an amazing daughter.  A house with a plastic garden. 2 gerbils and a lot of cupboard building to do. 




Non de Plume

Cracking tune by Twin Dracula.  Great band,  Nice guys. Don't know what they're doing anymore? I may be wrong but I think it's along the lines of marriage and honeymoons plus no drummer syndrome. 

Anyhoo... running for train sucks a hairy. Late darts night coupled with trying to ignore the elephant in the room.  I jest. The wife is 38 weeks this week but looks like she's pushing 60. Try sleeping when 2 people other than yourself are tossing and turning in the night! Impossible. I'm so excited for this kid.  The last one had me full of dread (No Connor,  that doesn't mean I was off my tits! Ha, like Connor is gonna read this! Check out his bands Cereal Box Heroes and Skiv though. Tunes galore and the silliest bollocks ever heard in a microphone.  I've been playing gigs with this kid for years now. Feels like he started his first band at childbirth!). 5 years it took me to feel like myself again! Yet here I am again,  about to get boofy-brained for the sake of furthering the human race.  I'm still unsure as to why we do it? The state we have made of this place surely leads to outlawing childbirth?

Anyhoo... Aquabats! I'm the kinda guy that likes what he likes until he's shown otherwise by Mark Bell of Mark Bell Illustration fame. So as I'm talking about my best mate, who as it happens,  moved half way up the fucking country to get away from me! Millencolin come on and for years i said that they were just Pennyridge Pioneers and that was it (barring a few songs on extreme sports game soundtracks). He abused my ears for years until I caved and went to one of their shows at the electric ballroom, Camden. Every song.  Every note. Bang on. Played with such geeky Scandinavian sass. Forever I was changed. 

Propagandhi. I could've sworn I put my morning playlist on?  My mornings musings would be so different,  haha! We'll get to the morning playlist.  It's great. Not the best.  But that's cos I'm lazy. What I like about it is that it feels like a continuation of sleep. When you don't get enough zeds, which is a very regular occurrence,  the more periods of 'could be sleep' are essential for daily functioning.  I think that's why I've been so rubbish of late.  Not enough 'could be sleep'! Whilst the wife is being uber-preggers I've been trying my hand at superdad/ the incredible husband (HA! Totally want that t-shirt). It's hard.  I don't know how you mothers out there do that multitasking,  empathy combo.  I fully attest that there is only so much man (So much Mat!). I'm sure there are many men (many many men) out there that are seasoned pros at washing, cooking, pulling teeth, hoovering, building built-in-wardrobes with custom drawers for a woman's endless amount of shit,  etc. I happen to struggle at doing all these tasks at once. All this brings us neatly back to lack of sleep.  There aren't enough hours in the day.  I don't know who was in charge of that? They totally fucked up. Just cos it gets dark,  doesn't mean we have to finish there does it? Turn the bloody light on mate... crack on. 

So running for the train sucks a hairy.  Not as much as having to run to three shops and back at 9 in the evening cos your loving wife forgot to bring her hayfever tablets; whilst everyone waits at the oche for you (I play darts on a Wednesday/I throw shit at a wall on a Tuesday and Wednesday). Sweaty back, unfit heart, clogged up phlegmy lungs... steady arm and throw! 1! 5! 20! "Fuck sake!" Pant, pant,  thump, thump,  wheeeeeeze! Still, I was the only one to win all my games last night. So, yeah!

So,  this evening I plan to talk about some exciting upcoming events among other things. Life is exciting at the moment.  Let me fill you in. 

My stop is up next

don't call me Rich,  don't call me George, just call me Cheese that's who I am. 




No blog roll

I thought of that title this morning... guess where? That's right. 

I'm on the train.  Why? Cos I'm an idiot.  I took my scooter out in the snow the other week and guess what happened? That's right.

3 days later; my groin was feeling fairly groinal again and the snow had miraculously disappeared like it'd never been there in the first place; i discovered that scooters don't last long in the wild! Idiot!

So, I'm on the train.  This bit ain't to bad (cos now it's time to skate or die) as I get to sit but the other rancid sardine cans i have to endure are to be desired! Redeeming features equal, I get to do stuff on my phone. That's it! Nothing else. 

Some guy has just sat next to me wearing a shower cap! Awesome! No raincoat, no brolly, all fashion statement? (No he's not naked! Jeesh!).

Anyway,  I'm not here to moan. Although,  I may. A little. Not too much.  If I do too much let me know in the comments. Arf arf.  My kid watches other people have fun on YouTube and they all say that. Kids these days eh?

I'm listening to my evening playlist.  It's great.  It's not the best but that's cos I'm lazy. Today it seems to be heavily laden with NOFX songs.  Now some of you may think "yay,  NOFX. The quintessential skate punk band. Well played Kingly. Proper commute music." Really, I'm just waiting for the next song to come on. Manqueller Man by Fucked Up comes on.  Who? Exactly.  A popular band from Canada I believe.  I added it the other day; I don't know why? It's good though. Enough shouty to not be overly singy and vice versa. It's guitary. It's nice.  You may be able to tell that I am not a reviewer of things.  Or for that matter, much of a writer. But if you don't give something a go... Not much happens! 

This blog... I don't know what it's gonna be but (butter butter butter butter butter butter face) you're gonna find out a load of what's going on in my life.  Umlaut, Müg, the world of punk rock,  babies,  friends,  food,  work and play.  I'll try not to bore you; I feel I may bore myself before it even gets to you. This may be more cathartic than anything but hey,  cheaper than a and quicker than an NHS shrink!

I've been through some shit recently (oh no! Kingly's getting serious) that could do with being aired. We all have, and you know what?  It's cool to talk about it (ha, NOFX again). I think being open and honest is the key to being at least relaxed with yourself.  No one laughs. No one actually gives a shit what you are as long as you're not hurting yourself or others.  I'm not saying no one gives a shit cos that couldn't be further from the truth. Our inadequacies are just a part of us and acknowledging and even embracing them will shorten those dark times. 

My face has been a picture of pouting dismay of late.  Why? The list is a long and interconnected web of stress.  I shall not bore you like I did the rest! But, an attempt to change that is  (YES, Ataris) underway, and writing to you is a big part of that.  Hence why the blog now tastes like a sour sausage or Cauldron falafel burger! Stay well clear of them. (Do yourself a favour of you haven't already. Odd Robot - A Late Night Panic. Thanks Mark Bell of Mark Bell Illustration fame for that recommendation of the week.)

That said,  I wish to not delve into that right now.   (Two Snakes by Fucked Up. Honestly, this song goes on for ages.  Feels like 2 maybe 3 of the same song stuck together. There is something total satisfying by the way he says, "TWO SNAKES". Why he says it? I don't know.  Enjoyable to the max though.)

So the end of my commute is here. 

I didn't really tell you anything did I? 

I'll be back tomorrow. 



Ticket to ride

Im looking down at the paper in my hand. I can't believe it. I've only gone and won £168m on the Euro Millions. Im spent the morning spending everything in my mind and loving it. Suddenly all my worries are lifted. I can afford my rent without fear f the council tax striking me down. My debts are all paid. I've walked into an estate agent in Bethnal Green and outright bought that town house I always wanted. 6 rooms 5 floors, 3 bathrooms and all the space I could ever want for my home studio and visiting friends. No more programming crappy drums on my 7 yr old computer. Real drums in a sound proofed room and fed directly into my brand new iMac. 

I think I'll open a savings account for my niece. 500k to her on her 18th birthday is a good start. plus this interest will bring that up to at least 750 in the next 16 years. I'm gonna buy my parents house off of them. It's worth a good few quid, so that'll give them the happy retirement they deserve. They'll live there for free of course. I'll even pay the council tax no worries. My brother can have a cool million too. Why not?! 

You know I can now open the bar I want to open. i mean I do love my current bar but then it would be MINE. No beer on tap. I'm talking good whiskey and bottles of cheap beer. I'll probably open it attached to a venue. Get in a load of gear so traveling bands don't have to stress about it. Maybe a few bunks in the loft for the tired and weary. I'm gonna call it the Den. Wait what??? What was that? I blinked. Where am I.

Im now looking down at the peace of paper in my hand. Take two, four times a day. Flu medicine. Its pouring with rain and I forgot my umbrella which doesn't help. The coffee in my other hand is being watered down as I stand under this rickety bus stand. Rents due in a few weeks and I'm broke. Can't even afford the bus, I'm just waiting for the rain to stop before I walk home. I feel bad for my lady. She deserves better than this. But it'll be okay, if i blink and squint hard enough I have the winning ticket in my hand.

How not to be Stopped in the Street

I saw a young fella on my way into work this morning sat on the bench outside Starbucks. He must have been about 20. Didn't look particularly rough so I wouldn't have pegged him for one of the local homeless. Also 10:30 am I wouldn't have assumed he was already on the mind altering materials. There was of course, like all of these incidences,  a little something that gave the game away to this gentlemans state of being. 

I walk out of the coffee shop, fresh brew in hand and ready to get on with my morning meetings. then over the airwaves, almost as if it was from a cartoon of a fresh pie resting on an open window sill, a smell that I will not any time soon forget. It was a mix of last nights curry, stomach acid and stale beer. I couldn't work out where this was coming from. I smelt my cup to see if the coffee was wrong. Nope not that. Had a look around to find the offence but I couldn't see anything that would explain it. Then my eye for some reason catches the previously mentioned young fella. As he stands up from his bench I notice that he has a hole in arse of his otherwise half decent suit trousers. And from this hole he had been for the last 15 minutes casually shitting on the bench which I then see has been dripping over the edge and onto the floor. He turns to inspect his work of art and then with no care for who was watching (at this point quite a few of us) he runs his finger thru the muck and marks his face like battle paint, pulls out a newspaper to cover his offence, then runs off into the distance singing Chumbawambas "Tubthumping". He will of course be left well alone for the rest of his travels today.

Bless his crazy face

The lack of drums in the A.M

It's been about 28 years since I've been able to look people in the eye without bursting out into either tears or laughter due to an annoyingly persistent nervous disposition in my childhood. It's also been 17 years since I've managed to speak in some sort of recogniseable format thanks to the remnant of the aforementioned affliction. So would I consider myself rid of all anxieties? Well let's break it down. My day will usually begin with a racing heart and headache brought on by the thought of leaving my bed. I'll  run through every conceivable conversation I'm likely to have in the first 4 hours of the day from the barista in Starbucks to the Guy in the fruit market in Stratford centre. This can be cured however by a pot of coffee and a few minutes peace having a morning shit and flicking through instagram. However, this in turn brings on the next problem. All these cool people out there. That burger looks pretty cool, I'll  try and make my own. That young skater kid is shredding, what happened to my own skating ability? All these bands I follow are awesome, why aren't I as good as that. Yeah so a morning shit takes 15 mins. 5 mins of business followed by 10 mins of self deprecation with my cock and balls dangling in the bowl wishing I could be as talented as these kids of instagram. But hey, that's over with fairly quickly and I drink another coffee and check the morning emails and kiss my lady goodbye before work. But now I'm IN work. It's Monday morning and something in my brain is telling me that I really don't need to open the bar today. I can just sit here and drink the fridge dry to calm down my racing heartbeat. But then I see the PA system screaming out to blast the latest Umlaut submissions (this morning was the unreleased Shark Party EP). Now I'm back to the instagram dilemma hearing awesome tunes and without a band currently to take out my angst on I'm a little lost for what to do. Turns out I've sat on the couch listening to this for 2 hours on loop without so much as scratching myself. Hearts racing again. Head hurts. Not something I can easily fix with painkillers (good after years of relying on them) or that be cured by alcohol (see previous humoured mention of a borederline drink problem birthed in my teens). I guess it's time to open the bar and talk to other humans. 

Passing the buck

Some of you may know that I run a bar in Stratford just 10 mins from my house and unofficial office of Umlaut Records. Sounds fun right? Well actually yeah, it is pretty damn fun 70% of the time, spending evenings sampling new booze lines and hanging off the end of the bar talking to all walks of life who enter the building. But 30% of the time, well fuck me that's just the most boring times of all. You can't leave to get lunch as you're maybe the only person in at this time of day (Wednesday daytimes are a ghost town) so instead I would endeavour to make lunches for myself. FAIL!!! I don't have time for that in the morning. No really all I end up doing is buying boxes of shortbread and eating this throughout the day. But then after a box or so, we'll your mouth starts to get pretty dry. So of course I reach for the soft drinks since it's the daytime and I am at work I probably shouldn't be drinking alcohol. But then now I've eaten a box or two of shortbread which is full of sugar and a glass of coke which is HELLA full of sugar. Too much stimulant at one time. So what could I possibly do to bring this all down while I'm alone in a bar?? You guessed it, and now what started off as a well intentioned way to eat healthily and consistently over the week has led to borderline alcoholism at the age of 33. Shortbread, like so many other delightfully packaged goods in the modern age is inevitably to blame for the downfall of civilised society, starting with a 30 something sat in bed at 2:30 in the afternoon writing garbage. God help us