Please feel free to overlay every description of the weekend with "Jess and Derek fought like cat and dog including when people were there, pretty much, although having people there helped them to rein it in a bit, and the cause of this was mostly Jess being UNREMITTINGLY PEDANTIC AND LITERALLY INCAPABLE OF A) HEARING ANYTHING OR B) STOPPING TALKING ONCE SHE'D STARTED WHICH WOULD HAVE BEEN FINE BUT ALL SHE DOES IS REPEAT THE SAME THING SIX HUNDRED TIMES", it saves me mentioning it any more.
SATURDAY: Knee was feeling well enough for me to do Big Cardio which is just as well as I couldn't find the battle ropes and wasn't about to go ask someone to take them out. Horrible horrible rush trying to get ready in decent time and deal with Jess's nine thousand pointless already-answered questions and refusal to be even slightly helpful about checking stuff while I literally had my hands full trying to do ten other things; Monzo card finally arrived and was christened. It is neon orange.
Got on train to Brighton eventually, looking like this, because Wedding Reception: https://www.instagram.com/p/BZGhr4Rh6k-/?taken-by=derekdesanges
It rained approximately eighty times while we were on the way down there; we had a look in some shops in the Lanes but not to any great effect (some cool things but nothing I was comfortable lugging to a fucking wedding reception/that would fit in a bag), I did buy a lapel pin that reads "It Will End In Tears" which is damningly accurate. We met up with Muffy, who was looking like this: https://www.instagram.com/p/BZG4w1lhw5B/?taken-by=derekdesanges
only like, over six feet tall and armed with a cane because she is MAJESTIC. Muffy and I poked around Snoopers Attic & Snoopers Paradise in the occasional but infrequent company of Jess; we found a Chelsea Pensioner's coat (Jess: I don't like it, it's too big for you and the shoulders are puffy), a feather ruff (Stranger: THAT LOOKS AMAZING WITH YOUR HAIR; - this was yelled from the opposite end of the shop. She did not work there); a gold brocade coat (Derek: I'm wearing this to get married in; Jess: not to me you're not; Derek: Well, you got that right); and multiple old photos and slides and vaguely carnage-y antique/vintage items. Also EXODUS tins.
During this I started suffering from waves of dizziness, despair, and nausea, correctly determined that I was hungry, flagged down Jess for some food from my bag and was eventually ready to go again, at which point Jess, who never bothers to bring food with her anywhere, decided that we were going for dinner and that everyone could piss off - I talked her into going to a tiny Japanese place in the Lanes (very cheap also) so that Muffy would come as well (it was about 4.30pm, not dinner time, too early for anything including the reception and far too early for me to be left alone with Jess for more hours of her sniping and complaining at me about everything); I was coaxed/manipulated into eating bits of the dinner, ruining diet part one. We crawled away to a Costa.
(Chris posted a mug on their instagram SO GOOD that I had to show the barista as well: "NOT SORRY ABOUT YOUR FRAGILE MASCULINITY").
While we were there the entire sky fell and practically ate the street. Muffy pointed out that this had happened the last time I came to Brighton as well. "I'm not saying it's your fault, but I'm not not saying it either."
We ventured out eventually. Muffy headed for the bus; I had dinner: https://www.instagram.com/p/BZHASxRB6-0/?taken-by=derekdesanges
; we crawled slowly off to find the wedding venue, still being early; found it, walked on past down to the cold-ass seafront. Had some mussels/oysters etc. (Jess: I'll buy you an oyster; Derek: I don't like oysters: a short argument then commences???? about whether or not I don't like oysters???? BECAUSE APPARENTLY I WOULDN'T KNOW?). We walked to the pier, slightly more peacefully.
When I say the weather had no idea what it was doing I mean it: https://www.instagram.com/p/BZHJZzZhS8n/?taken-by=derekdesanges
We snuck into the wedding reception while the Best Maid was making her lengthy, rambling, cat-video-featuring speech. Found the brides, hugged the brides, sent Jess off to the bar to spend both drink tokens on prosecco for herself, spent a while eating h'ors d'oeuvres and thoroughly wrecking entire diet plan (some of them were nicely-conceived - tiny wraps of "fish" and chips with mushy pea dip was cute) while Jess repeatedly told me to stop eating; watched the cake being cut, watched a couple of the dances, snuck off home. I feel in a way that, had I gone alone as I'd initially planned to and chickened out of doing, I might have had a decent enough time and been introduced to people, definitely stayed long enough to nip over to Muffy's DJ set, or gone to Duckie on getting back to London.
However, what's done is done. I had an amaretto hot chocolate when we got back to Victoria, binged when I got back to the house (this did at least get me through some stuff I'd been trying to get rid of) and passed out.
SUNDAY: With full intention of making up for this failure, I threw serious caffeine in my face and went to town on cardio today. This worked out - I could have gone on and done some gentle running again as I did yesterday but time was running out and I have to fucking foam roller after exercise now because it stops my shittening thigh muscles pulling my knee out of alignment or something. So there was another rushed morning of preparation (I AM SICK OF THIS) and fighting with Jess (ALSO OF THIS) as a result of which I left yogurt on the side all day.
However we DID get to the station in time for coffee which is more than can be said for Fiona, who was befucked by my West Country Transport Woes again and only just managed to arrive before the start of the play by forgoing a bathroom break or any food. We fed her the remaining half of Jess's stroopwaffel and promised the existence of an interval.
This was all a bit pointless tbh as the play was ARSE. Jess was MOVED by the first act and I don't really want to get into this much but: don't try to write in Ye Olde English if you can't do it consistently within the same SPEECH AT LEAST and if you don't know how the fucking language WORKS; ration your fucking monologues; if you're going to make allusions to a current situation A) consider carefully if they're appropriate in the narrative you have created B) don't be self-indulgent with music C) don't do cheap emotional stings D) literally don't be mawkish E) learn to fucking pace your plot properly with scenes in a sensible order and when the story should end F) YOU'RE NOT SHAKESPEARE G) please stop boring me with your costume choices and actually commit to either full aesthetic or the full non-aesthetic instead of this garbagey 6th form piecemeal nonsense (however thanks for inspiring me to reconsider "not buying brass vambraces") H) Okay the Very Big Man playing the beserker was Hot and did a good job with his role I) Did I mention that you're not Shakespeare but apparently think that you are in a number of ways? BAD. Oh, and J) If you're acting with hairline mics because your actors can't project properly, please get them USED to this so that I don't get deafened during their hugging dialogue, of which there was too much. You're bad at blocking.
God it dragged. I felt guilty too because I was right in the front and I probably looked as bored as I felt, and that's not something the cast needed to deal with as the very vast majority of what I didn't like about that play was not their doing.
[In the queue beforehand I observed, bitterly, that I missed going to things with Doug. I don't want to dwell on that too much, but it used to be a lot of fun, and obviously that never happens any more. And these days there are very few male friends I get to go to things with. And I feel that absence a lot? And I feel like someone is going to come and scream at me for having that emotion, too].
I bullied Fiona and Jess over to Starbucks and had the first REASON FOR THE SEASON:https://www.instagram.com/p/BZJXz0ShDye/?taken-by=derekdesanges
(it turns out that I can squeeze a short skinny PSL into my calorie plan occasionally if not so much into my budget, ouch)
I suggested heading towards London Bridge afterwards (having spotted no less than four members of the cast heading home in various ways past the window) primarily because this was the ONE DAY I didn't bring my sunglasses (I brought my raincoat though, and needed that), and the fuckening sun would have been in my eyes had we gone any direction but east at that point. Jess decided to route-march this for reasons best known to herself; at London Bridge we very nearly had another row simply because LITERALLY NO ONE ELSE WOULD MAKE A DECISION OR ADVANCE AN OPINION ABOUT DOING ANYTHING AND I HAD PROVIDED A NORMAL NUMBER OF OPTIONS (3) AND WAS TIRED OF DOING ALL THE FUCKING THINKING; Jess decided it would be diplomatic to go home, I calmed down and Fiona and I had a nice hour or so in the George.
Now, the George in Southwark was a specific plan because A) it is a National Trust Pub from the 17th century presumably spared the Great Fire because of its position on the South Bank, and therefore Pleasantly Atmospheric and B) I had recently read that Mark Rylance's revived Twelfth Night Mumming/Combat Play company The Lion's Part take their crowd there on Twelfth Night along with the Holly Man in order to wassail and generally continue old traditions and that made it sound like a good idea. I *have* been there a couple of times before. So pleased was I (and confused by being charged 90p for a lime and soda by one bar man then 45p by the other?) that I sent them an enquiry on their website about having my birthday there. I feel like it would be SUITABLY EXTRA.
(If we ain't facebook acquainted and you therefore didn't get the invite and are reading: the party's on the 4th of November. You're invited. I'm going to be 35. I want fucking presents. LOTS of them and good ones. I am a petulant Roman Emperor. I demand ego massage.]
On the whole, I think it was a good thing I didn't exhaust myself on Saturday night but a bad thing that I've not been Out Dancing once this week.