Monday, July 26, 2004


Not sure how to commemorate this momentus occasion, if at all... Um, I am at my desk, and it smells like old bananas. Because there is an old banana skin in the bin. It's been annoying me all day, but not enough to actually do something about it.

So once more I am flirting with the idea of going freelance. In weighing up the pros and cons I have discovered some things about my character: namely that I like routine. I like having plans for the day, and having nothing to do fills me with dread. I wonder if working from home would just be an opportunity to go slowly mad… My main worries are actually to do with things like tax, claiming expenses (i.e. phone calls to clients, water rates (for some reason when I am at home I need to wee about every half hour), electricity etc.), and late payment. I know from working with freelancers that it doesn’t matter if I take their invoice to accounts as soon as I get it; they may still get paid over a month later. And as someone who has no savings but does have huge debts, the thought of not being able to pay my mortgage fills me with horror. And keeps me working for The Man! If anyone can offer me advice about the realities of freelancing, I would be most grateful.

Speaking of going slowly mad, I really thought I had entered an alternate universe on Saturday afternoon, in the Kennington branch of my beloved Tesco. I was searching for meringues with which to make strawberry and meringue ice-cream, but where to look for them? They’re not a cake, and not a biscuit or snack: after a brief search I asked a member of staff. He looked at me blankly ‘What? What’s that? [describe basic structure and appearance of a meringue] Nah, never heard of it. Wait, I’ll ask him.’ [Goes to ask other member of staff, who looks at me like I am a pervert, and similarly has never heard of a meringue, and has no concept of what it might be.] I try explaining what a meringue is to a third member of staff, thinking it may jog his memory. ‘You know, it’s a dessert made of sugar and egg whites.’ ‘A cake?’ ‘No, not a cake. A… thing.’ He goes to ask his manager (who probably has a red button with a direct line to the police station under her desk for precisely these sorts of queries) and comes back saying that they might possibly be past the jams. We go to look. Past the jams are sugar and baking ingredients. I give up, and I make the ice-cream with just strawberries, and it’s still delicious.

On Emerald’s recommendation, I just went to see this at the National Portrait Gallery, and it was fab. One of the highlights was a short film of Penelope Chatwode floating across a river in the Himalayas on an inflated buffalo (I think) skin. Wow.

Great songs I am listening to at work!

Eggs – The Trachtenburg Family Slideshow Players
I’m On Nights – Richard Hawley
The District Sleeps Alone – The Postal Service
And many other fine songs from the Rough Trade best of 2003 compilation (CD1; haven’t listened to CD2 yet).

No comments: