1. Sylvia Plath, age 3o, head in oven
  2. John Kennedy Toole, age 31, garden hose in exhaust pipe
  3. Ryunosuke Akutagawa, age 35, OD on Veronal
  4. B.S. Johnson, age 40, at home, not sure how, please advise
  5. Karin Boye, age 41, OD on sleeping pills
  6. David Foster Wallace, age 46, hung himself
  7. Anne Sexton, age 46, carbon monoxide poisoning
  8. Richard Brautigan, age 49, bullet in head
  9. Virginia Woolf, age 59, rocks in pockets
  10. Ernest Hemmingway, 62, bullet in head
  11. Guy Debord, age 63, shot himself
  12. Hunter S Thompson, age 68, bullet in head
  13. Paul Lafargue, age 68 & Laura Marx (daughter of Karl) 66, suicide pact

As a writer, age 46, it’s a year of thin ice for me and all other people who share the birth year of 1965. Let’s talk each other through this one and come out the other side with a book worth writing, even if it’s a word each.


My two daughters danced for us this evening.

The elder one spent a third of the time faking headstands.

The younger one’s dance was a cross between sumo stretching warm-ups and a novice in a white water raft (minus the water and the raft).

The song spasm’d a dyslexic beat, so that didn’t help.

But then I thought, it’s my fault, I taught them to dance by dancing with them, to loud music that I like.

Me, a man so out of touch with dance-floor culture, my moves might just be the next big retro-thing – Dated Dancing. Yes, let’s unite as victims of dance culture and move our bodies to the wrong era.

This disconnect with the music will at worst confound the youth of today.

At best, they might copy us.

Then we can all relive our very own Superfreak scene at the end of Little Miss Sunshine.


We all thought hang on, this can’t be right.

Facebook, the soft centre of our digitised universe, worth over £100bn.

Well, we were right, all of us who really stopped to think about it.

But just like the value of everything, it’s as distorted as Joey Barton.

Thankfully, facebook has a sugar daddy, or salt-of-the-earth uncle, waiting in the wings.

Friends Reunited.

It has a value of zilch but is blue-blooded with integrity and authenticity, just like your old uncle who wore threadbare cords with a piece of twine and his lumberjack shirt half tucked into his pants.

As the floatation of facebook hits the law courts with its falsification of forecast profits, clerks are at work lining up some kind of ‘Zuckerberg Enquiry’.

By June 1st, shares will be on a par with a litre of gasoline.

By October 1st, Facebook will evolve into Facebook Reunited as users drop the social networking site quicker than a whale in a dandelion parachute.

This new-co/old-co will potter along, while Mr Z will take up a delivery boy post with UPS.

The world will fall back into the present moment and regain its poise.

And you can quote us all on that.


She was a stayer.

She never gave up even when the train hit her.

As tough lives go, hers was vintage leather.

Orphaned at 6 weeks, she found wannabe parents at the never-too-late age of 78.

Within a year they’d gone, but that year changed her life and theirs.

And yours, in a way you’re just about to find out.


It’s great to get in on something early.

It could be a band, a drink, a haircut, a word, anything underground.

But the most underground scene is the one that no-one else hears, sees or experiences, only the person who writes, performs or comprises it.

Put another way, all underground is overground once it’s exposed.

So the next time you think you’re onto something truly out-there, keep it in-there, or else it’ll be nowhere.


“Retirement lied to me.

I paid my national insurance stamp for 50 years, worked myself to the bone I did.

For this.

A pension that never came when they said it would.

And might never come at all.

I’m 72 and can’t go on welding at my age.

I’m being punished just because I’m fit for an old boy.

I may be healthy but I’m broke.

I need help from the state.

I need and want my pension.

Give us a break, will you.”

As overheard in most homes a few years from now, and sadly not used as evidence in the strikes today, 10-5-12


Were rare for them.

Thank Christ for that.

She cursed her luck.

He cursed her life.

They blamed each other.

So both stood trial.

And both got off.

From here on in.

Their love was sex.

Love based on hate.

Wracked deep with guilt.

They made a pact.

To die as one.

With no soul there.

To see them go.

Their lives are wiped.

From all who knew.

The slate is clean.

Such days as that.


As we wait for the numbers, we wait in vain.

I heard a whisper – there is no majority.

We’re facing a hung London parliament.

Deep into the night Brain Paddick will be faced with a choice – to back or bin Ken or Boris.

Can we handle another Lib Dem Conservative coalition and another tragic combo?

By the time you read this, they’ll be hand in hand in power – Brian & Boris.

Then the mess really starts.

But hold up, we can stop this by signing this:

Dear Brian,

On behalf of London’s residents, pick Ken.

Yours faithfully

(type your name here)

23.06, 4th May 2012


Good Evening ladies and gentlemen,

After the news from New York that Edvard Munch’s only public version of his painting went for £74,000,000, I’ve been fortunate enough to come across a previously unknown 5th version of The Scream, although this one is restricted to audio.

Obviously, this mono-symphonic cry will not quite fetch the sum of its visual sister, but hey, what else can you sink your money into?

So, let’s start the bidding at £9.99…

…do I hear ten pounds?