Saturday, 30 August 2008

Saturday 30/08/08

On Thursday at work, I spot a new flag on top of the British Museum, a flag that I can’t quite make out what it is, so I go online, find contact details and send the following email to three British Museum departments (General Information, Marketing, The British Museum Shop):

“Hello, 

I was wondering whether you could help me with something.  I suppose there are only two things that you need to know about me: a) I work near the British Museum and b) I am a Flag Enthusiast (FE). 

Every day I come in my office, expecting the usual pain and sorrow, watching my life run through my fingers like sand, sand that no lovers will ever step on during a romantic stroll. 

However, recently I’ve had a tiny glimmer of hope that’s been helping me get through.  That little white flag you’ve raised. 

My question is – I can’t quite make it out from where I am.  What is this flag please?  And how long are you planning to keep it up? 

I look forward to your response. 

Best wishes, 

Fake Name”

After my work is done, I go to the gym where I do chest and abs wearing a grey Nike t-shirt, white rugby shorts from Canterbury, white lycra shorts from Nike underneath, one navy blue/light blue stripy sock, one navy blue/white stripy shop and white Adidas running trainers with the whole ensemble looking only 72% ridiculous.  

Then I shower and get changed, thinking that I haven’t seen the sleazy guy with the faux-friendly attitude and wandering hands that I wrote about last week, since…well, since I wrote about him.  And on this Thursday evening, I choose to not take this as a coincidence. 

After the gym I meet up with Scott – we’re having dinner at the restaurant in Soho Hotel with Brendan, Donnell and his boyfriend at 2030 – but it’s still only 1955 so Scott and I go to Starbucks nearby and sit there without ordering anything.  I show Scott the latest issue of Boyz that I picked up on the way, which has a picture of me from Matinee, and point out that – in yet another in the series of punches in the face that I’ve received over the last 28 years – my picture has been altered to make me look more tan. 

I recall the conversation with the photographer on Sunday night who pointed out to me that he’s likely to do that, but I wasn’t strong enough, I didn’t have the conviction to ask him not to.  This is the picture, nonetheless, with not quite the whiter shade of pale that my skin has now reverted to. 


Oh and here’s a comment via email from Nathan, after he saw my picture in Boyz, for extra corroboration:

“I actually thought when I saw the photo that you looked a lot paler in person (translucent even… akin to that weird glow that gin and tonic gets under a black light)”

Thank you, Nathan.

Then it’s 2020 so we walk over to the Soho Hotel and find out that we’re the first of the party to arrive, then we sit in some hotel lounge for a bit and take pictures of each other, then I tell Scott that I’d really like to start hanging out with people who are not late for their dinner reservations, then it’s 2045 and Donnell and his boyfriend arrive, then we sit at the table and Brendan rocks up at 2055. 

I only have a smoked salmon and thyme omelette because I only want to spend a maximum of £10 with a view to my impending unemployment, we all play the parts of people who are having dinner together and talking, Brendan asks me if I’m looking forward to my move to Sydney, I tell him I’m looking forward to coming back to London actually and getting the whole thing done and over with. 

Then it’s suddenly 2220 and I need to get back home right about now, so that I have a chance to sit on the couch in front of the TV and freak out a bit about the following the day at work.  If I don’t get home at least an hour before bedtime (usually midnight), I don’t have enough time to get the fretting out of the way, so it keeps me up. 

This Friday night I get home at 2245, fret, manage to still be awake at 0050, take some Nytol, manage to still be awake at 0200, take a Valium, drift off.

Wednesday, 27 August 2008

Thursday 28/08/08

So I’ve now prepared the London Preppy booklets. As I mentioned there are three and two of them are going on ebay. Here are some specs:

- The booklets are 53-pages long (of text)

- They include some of my favorite stories

- Each one also contains 6 Polaroid pictures (stapled on)

- These include me smoking, me on Scott’s motorbike, close ups of my tattoos (blurred unfortunately), etc

- The front cover shows a picture of my torso (in colour)

- The back cover shows a picture of my back (in colour)

- Each booklet has three sections / chapters

- These are called: In / Out / About

- There are handwritten introductions to each section / chapter

- There are some handwritten comments through the booklet

This week I’ve been trying to put them together, a process which consisted of: stealing the office Polaroid camera / going out to buy film because there wasn’t any in the camera and finding out how expensive it is / sneaking around in the office trying to print out 159 pages of text and 6 pages of semi-naked pictures of myself / learning how to use the office binding machine, something which I never did knew before.

A Girl has been a very helpful ally in this process, taking some of the pictures, helping me with the sneaking around, etc. In fact, on Wednesday this week, the final day of the preparation, I send her the following email.

My original email is in blue and A Girl’s response is in red.

I’m afraid I’m going to need your help for some jobs today. Namely, they are:

a) I need to print out the covers of my booklet. This is a very precarious, risky job as they consist of a naked full page picture of me front and back This is risky, my middle name has known to be Danger so instead of shutting this email now and wishing I had never seen it I will read on. And this needs to be done in colour Holy mother of god. The only way I can think of doing this is that I send them to the printer but you are already stood there waiting to pick them up. Or the other way round. There are only 6 pages though. Yes okay, I can do this. Either way is fine with me. I think we can pull this off as well as we have pulled off anything in our lives.

b) I need you to take some pictures of me on the Polaroid. Only two, mind you. One of them will have to be taken in the toilet Tricky but doable, and the other one on the street at lunchtime. I suppose the graveyard is a good site for that. Even trickier given my already two hour lunch but we can make this happen.

Are you up for these challenges? Yes I am We can split the projects through the day of course. Okay

Here is the link on ebay for the first booklet. This will stay on for a week – once this is over, I will put the second one up.

LONDON PREPPY BOOKLET ON EBAY

If the link doesn't work, go on ebay and search for London Preppy. It comes up. I think.

In the meantime, here are some pictures of the booklet.

The front cover:



The back cover:


A really bad, blurry picture of my Chapter 1 summary:


An example of one of the Polaroids (I will write comments on each Polaroid too):



Erm...a picture of a page of the booklet (comment on the right):



That's all I guess.

Tuesday, 26 August 2008

Wednesday 27/08/08

On the Sunday that I get back from Manchester, Notting Hill Carnival is on in London. I haven’t mentioned specifically where I live, but it’s fair to say that it’s very close to the epicentre of the Carnival. And no, it’s not Notting Hill.

For those lucky enough not to know, Notting Hill Carnival (Wikipedia tells me) is an annual event which takes place each August over two days. It is led by members of the Caribbean population, many of whom have lived in the area since the 1950s. The carnival has attracted up to 2 million people in the past, making it the second largest street carnival in the world after Rio.

Wikipedia then goes on to mention how many people are arrested every year for general acts of violence and being drunk and disorderly (a few hundred) and how many people are stabbed / killed routinely (a couple per year on average).

What Wikipedia fails to mention, is that I fucking hate the Carnival with a passion. Particular elements of the Carnival that make me wish I were dead, include: the type of people it attracts (not the Caribbean ones, the white people who think they are fucking fun and liberal for attending what is originally a Caribbean carnival) / the fact that all the roads around my house are packed and filthy for two days / the fact that you can’t get to any shops because everyone is mobbing them trying to buy cans of cider and bottles of rum to drink on the streets around my house / the fact that all the tube stations are either closed or crammed / the fact that everyone is fucking drunk.

Have I mentioned that I hate drunken people? In fact everyone who drinks should be executed. Perhaps I’ll attend the Carnival next year with a gun. They do it to each other anyway, why shouldn’t I as well.

And here are a couple of incidents from this year’s carnival, incidents which happened before I packed a bag and went over to Scott’s house to avoid being anywhere near this bleeding nightmare.

Incident One: I’ve just come back from Manchester, been straight to the gym near Euston station and have now taken the tube back home. I’ve just got off the tube and getting in the lift to go up to street level. Predictably the lift is absolutely packed and everyone is well jolly. Amongst the people is a group of 5-6 boys, white, aged around 19, dressed from the suburbs, i.e. wearing Lacoste tops, jeans, white trainers. Two of them are singing Sun Is Shining by Bob Marley in a put on West Indies accent (“sun is shining, the weather is sweet, make you wanna move your dancing feet now”). If I had a shotgun in my pocket I would have already starting stroking it.

As we’re stuck there, waiting for the lift to move, another one from their group spreads his arm and taps a black guy on the shoulder – behind his back and from a different direction so that when the black guy turns round to see he’s facing somebody completely different. The whole group of stupid kids cracks up, the black guy says nothing (he’s not a real aggro black guy with a gun unfortunately, he’s one of those timid Somalian ones who sell fruit and veg) and everyone goes on with their business, waiting to get out. Then the guy who was singing Bob Marley says to the guy who tapped the shoulder: “Do it again, do it again” (still in West Indies accent). All this while we’re all stood there pressed against each other and closely listening to all of this.

Then the lift arrives and the tapper guy doesn’t get the chance to do it again, do it again, as we’re all starting to walk out. With my back turned to some of the group, I’m heading out too, when I feel a tap on my shoulder. I turn around and see the Bob Marley singing guy, so I pull my headphones out and say to him: “What do you fucking want”. The cunt looks at me with bloodshot eyes that are finding it hard to focus after too much Red Stripe and says in the same fucking mock-black accent: “I dun nutting mate, I dun nutting”. Unfortunately I don’t find the courage to punch him in the face and become another Notting Hill Carnival arrest statistic.

Incident Two: I’m on the tube again later on Sunday evening, heading out to Matinee. It’s about 2230. There is lots of drunken shouting all around of course and it’s quite busy, when I hear some particularly intense shouting / chanting from the next carriage. We get to some station (Bond Street? Why not) and this shouting / chanting guy (white, aged 24 maybe, kinda fit) gets off wearing just a pair of checked knee-length shorts. I’m going to speculate he had a top and some shoes to start with, but they have been left somewhere. Then he’s on the platform walking towards the exit, then he pulls his shorts down and takes them off (shouting and singing all through that of course), then he puts them over his shoulder and walks off. Completely and utterly naked. I like this guy.

So yes, on Sunday evening I go to Matinee with Scott, where we eventually meet Donnell, his boyfriend, Brendan, Nathan, lots and lots of other people, but Matinee is extremely busy and not so much fun and we spend out time standing around waiting for something to happen (nothing does), or walking around trying to get somewhere (it’s very difficult). I don’t have such a great time, so we only stay from 2300 until 0630 and then we go.

And finally, because we’ve seen too many pictures of me from going out etc before, here are some pictures of the Matinee dancers whilst getting ready to dance instead.


















EDIT: I have now listed the London Preppy booklet on ebay.  I will write about this in tomorrow's post, but in the meantime you can find it here:


The listing is on for one week.

Tuesday 26/08/08

So what else has happened is that I have now found my housemate in Sydney, a housemate that is a friend of friends (whom I hardly know really) on facebook, which I suppose is as good a guarantee as any. And this is a person that is Australian, but not from Sydney, and is moving to Sydney around the same time as me so we’re planning to find a place together. Right at this point I’m thinking maybe I won’t show him the blog yet, I don’t want to scare him away: we need to find a place, sign the contract, move in, live together for three, possibly four months, and then maybe he will be ready. Not that I don’t expect this house share to fall through before I move over to Sydney anyway like everything else always does.


And it’s Friday when I finish work, meet up with Scott and we catch a train up to Manchester. I lived in Manchester from September 2001 to March 2004 and I haven’t been back since. Also, when I lived in Manchester I wasn’t gay, well maybe I was, but nobody knew, not even me. This weekend I’m going back up to Manchester, because:


a) I want to visit my best friend Andrews, who I lived with back then, then he left a while after I left, and now he’s moved back there

b) It’s Manchester Pride this weekend, and as I’m so immensely proud to be gay, because it’s always so comfortable when you meet new people or start a new job and somebody asks you if you have a girlfriend and you have to mumble “erm…I’m actually gay”, so I can’t miss any Pride event around the country

c) I am doing some more ridiculous “work” up there, of the same sort that I did in Soho Pride the week before


So we get there on Friday at 1825 or something and Andrews with his boyfriend pick us up from the train station and drive us to their flat (sorry – apartment, they refer to it as an “apartment”), an apartment which has two bedrooms, is on the 7th floor of a very nice brand new development and has floor-to-ceiling glass windows overlooking a canal, lots of space everywhere and Korres toiletries, and they pay about 25% less rent per month than I do for my ridiculous, deteriorating little flat in Central West London.


In the evening we head out and this is when my first work shift is. This work shift (and the two subsequent ones, really) involve Scott and me having the name of some website painted on out chests and standing there, either on Manchester’s gay street or in some club. I used to object to things like that and think that people who did them were almost subhuman, so feel free to make your own judgements too, I know I would. But right now, faced with only four and a half more weeks of a regular income and subsequent to that a big void of uncertainly, I have let my standards slip quite significantly. Maybe this is how people feel about prostitution; maybe this is the next logical step.


So we’re out doing that and the best thing that happens during that night is that, now wait, there isn’t one. Instead, I get involved in several random conversations like this:


Drunken guy who comes up to me: “I suppose you have to have a certain physique to do this job”

Me: “Well I suppose, yes”

Drunken guy: “And shave your chest”

Me: “I don’t shave my chest”

Drunken guy: “Yeah, OK. How old are you”

Me: “28”

Drunk guy: “And you don’t shave your chest? Right. What’s your name?”

Me: “___” (my real name)

Drunken guy: “That’s not your real name, is it”


If you’re outside London you are not allowed to have a name that is not Matt, or Rob or Ben or something. Foreign people don’t exist there so if I have an unusual name I’m obviously lying. Ah, the North. I remember how it was always an adventure going in shops and every time I opened my mouth to ask for something people did a double take. Every single time. On a daily basis. Maybe that’s why I’ve ended up so quiet these days – the trauma of talking to anyone.

Also have I mentioned how much I hate drunken people? I hate drunken people. I just can’t deal with them.


Then we get home and then we sleep.


On Saturday evening we go out for dinner and then after that Scott and I go out for a bit more “work”. This time we’re working at the biggest party of the weekend, one of the usual Pride parties with thousands of people in a massive venue walking around aimlessly trying to find some quick thrills and each other. I am not up for any quick thrills of course, so I just stand there for a couple of hours as I’m paid to do, and then we catch a taxi home.


On Sunday there isn’t much time to do anything, apart from catch a train back to London, a journey which requires a stop in Birmingham and five hours to get to London.

Wednesday, 20 August 2008

Wednesday 20/08/08

On Monday I go to the gym where things happen, but I can’t say what things – the annoying part about having a semi-successful blog is that you don’t know who’s reading it so you can’t say much about anyone.  So I can’t share what’s been happening in the gym over the last few weeks in connection some other guy who works out there.  Even though I really wish it would stop.  Oh well. 

What I can share is that on Monday in the gym after doing legs and abs, I go in the changing room, undress, wear a towel, leave my underwear on a bench by mistake, go shower, come back, remember that I’ve left my underwear there, realise they have been stolen.  And this is a pair of boxer-briefs from Calvin Klein, black, with a grey/silver waistband that my sister bought me for my birthday or name day or something or other this year.  Because I don’t buy any underwear apart from daggy ones from Marks & Spencer’s these days of course. (Thanks Brendan for the term daggy)

Then I get dressed and go upstairs and ask the woman at reception whether anyone handed a dirty pair of underwear in, and unfortunately the woman says no.  Not that I’m complaining really, I would have done the same.  We know the rules: anything left in the changing room for more than 9 seconds without a visible owner no more than three feet away is up for grabs. 

Later at home I find out that another gymnast has accepted my facebook friend request, and this is a particularly good one, because: 

a) His profile is linked to his girlfriend’s (I like that)

b) He is short and blond and tan

c) He has lots of pictures of himself going out getting pissed with his mates

 …but best of all…

 d) He has two photo albums of going surfing in Newquay (if I weren’t so contemptuous about the use of exclamation marks I would put two right here) 

And on this Monday evening at 2045, this is who I want to be: a short, blond, tan gymnast with a girlfriend, several drinking buddies and camping surfing holidays in Newquay (9.8/10) 

And on this Monday evening at the same time really, I am: a short, pale, brown-haired non-gymnast with a boyfriend, several buddies I don’t want to drink with and B&B surfing holidays in Newquay (6.3/10) 

On Tuesday at work A Girl finds this website which calculates your body fat if you put in your height, weight and Body Mass Index, and the concept that a website can work this out from a distance without any real life measurements is so ridiculous that we have to try it.  A Girl calculates her body fat, then calculates my body fat and then as a bonus she calculates the body fat of this guy at work who we choose at random, mainly because he’s bleeding annoying. 

Because we don’t know his exact height and weight, A Girl has to estimate those, which she does, and eventually gets back to me with: 

“I have estimated ___’s body fat percentage as 230%.  I do think that’s likely, but I’ll go back and check my calculations just to make sure”. 

Then we go to the local graveyard for lunch and take pictures of each other lying on the graves. 



Tuesday, 19 August 2008

Tuesday 19/08/08

So my desperate attempt to befriend anyone who has competed for Great Britain or Australia in the Commonwealth Games (2002, 2006) and Olympics (2004, 2008) has not been going exactly great, as most people are hard to find (why do parents insist on naming their children “Matt” and “David” and “Ben” – how are we supposed to stalk each other if you get 340 results of the same name on facebook?) and those that I do find, reject my friendship flat out.  Not that I’m blaming them of course, I don’t add strangers on facebook either. 

Then there are a few that have accepted my friend request but when I’ve messaged them subsequently they haven’t replied, because what sane straight athlete would start an online conversation with some random fag that starts messaging them on facebok, really? 

Right now I have reached the stage that for the very few that have accepted me (an insanely hot gymnast, two moderately hot gymnasts, one very hot rugby player, one moderately hot diver) I dare not message them in case they just delete me, so I just keep them there, sitting back quietly and making myself inconspicuous, so I can look at their pictures every now and then. 

And apparently none of the athletes are gay; in fact, a yahoo news story tells me that: 

“Only 10 of the 10,500 athletes competing in the Beijing Olympics are openly gay, according to a study by a gay website.  Nine of the gay athletes named by Outsports were lesbians and their sports ranged from fencing to cycling. Just one, Australian diver Matthew Mitcham, was a man” 

I guess my only hope is stumbling upon the odd closeted person, who sits at home between his 0600-1100 and 1400-1900 training session in the pool / on the track / in the field / wherever it is that those guys train, hoping to receive a random message on facebook by a pathetic homosexual with an athlete fetish (i.e. me).  The chances of that of course are about 0.00001%, but I do like a good challenge.  No wait, I don’t like a challenge at all, maybe I ought to give up now. 

Not that the facebook endeavours have been completely wasted of course – I have come across a different profile, a profile of somebody I talked about on here not so long ago, well to be more accurate he talked about me first and then I had to reply, but anyway we’re not talking about that. 

In other news on Monday a reader sends me a link to this magazine website, a magazine that had a picture of me on the cover back in June apparently, not that I was aware of this of course.  And this is the magazine cover.


Now, the best thing about this cover is the title.  My picture is used as part of an article on how to seduce straight guys.  I am the straight bait.  

Some people’s lives are so pathetic that they have no choice but to take pleasure in infrequent, tiny, ridiculous incidents that present a glimmer of happiness.  I am one of those people and this is one of those incidents.   

Finally, here are two lines that friends used on Sunday when I was ridiculously “working” at Soho Pride, which I thought were very funny, so I thought I’d share them. 

1)  I’m chatting to Orville and I’m wearing my top because it’s a little cold and then it gets a bit warmer so I take my top off and some guy comes up to me and says can I have my picture taken with you and I say sure and then when I come back Orville says: “Once you take your top off you become public property”.  Which is funny 

2)  I’m chatting to Alexei and Devon and Alexei says to me, “you’re very proud that you have blonde hairs on your upper lip, aren’t you” and I says “yes, because it’s very non-Greek”, and then Alexei puts his hand forward and flicks something off the side of my head and says “let’s me just get rid of that chip on your shoulder”.  Which is also funny 

Oh wait, there’s something else.  I wanted to take the opportunity of the picture I posted yesterday and explain once and for all the pale thing – because the picture seems to demonstrate it very well, being quite close up and in natural light.  I don’t care if this sounds conceited (people make up their minds about things like that, no matter what I write anyway), but I think the paleness goes with me, because it goes with my skin.  If I had a hairy chest or if I shaved my chest and had stubble / rashes etc, or if I had spots, I probably wouldn’t want to be pale.  But because my skin is kinda smooth and not very damaged, I think the pale looks OK. 


On the other hand, if I looked like him below (a whole different type of male specimen) I would look really stupid being pale at the same time.  So I would be maintaining an average tan like this kid.  In conclusion, you have to do the best with what you've got.  I am and he is.

(I just found this picture on google, I think he's a porn star, if I'm not allowed to use this picture let me know and I'll take it down).

Monday, 18 August 2008

Monday 18/08/08

By Saturday afternoon I have had enough of the jet black hair, not because I think it looks that bad, it’s just a look that I can’t carry off anymore because I’m not 21 and I don’t spend all of my days listening to Suede and Placebo anymore – just most of them.  Not to mention that it doesn’t go with ay of my clothes and it’s not very preppy at all. 

So I go to Boots with Scott, where I buy peroxide to get rid of the black and something called Light Ash Brown that I delude myself will bring me back to my natural colour. 

And just after the peroxide I have this fantastic Vivienne Westwood / Johnny Rotten bright orange colour in my hair, which I can never, will never have again, so I take a picture to commemorate forever.  And this picture can be seen here:


I don’t know if I’m completely crazy but I can see a certain appeal in this look, with blinding orange hair, blinding white skin and blue eyes, but you know what, I still decide to go ahead with the brown. 

Then I put on the Light Ash Brown, then I don’t like that either and go back some more hair dye – something called Natural Light Brown, and I put that on instead. 

After 12 days and a sequence of hair colouring actions, which went: 

Bleached with Sun-in

Bleached with Sun-in again

Bleached with Sun-in once more for good measure

Dyed Natural Light Brown

Dyed Deep Black

Bleached with peroxide

Dyed Light Ash Brown

Dyed Natural Light Brown 

…I am now back to something that resembles my natural colour only dyed like fuck.  And I’m thinking never again. 

On Saturday evening I go out to eat with Mean and Scott and then suddenly it’s Sunday morning, when something called Soho Pride is on.  Because we haven’t had enough of those this year already, and we’re all so bleeding proud to be gay that we have to attend at least one such event per fortnight in different towns around the world. 

And to demonstrate my particular gay pride this week, I decide to actually work in this event, so I take up my first gay / scene / ridiculous / non-office employment ever.  The less said about this of course the better, so let’s say nothing.

Here’s one picture from this Sunday with ___, a blog reader, and there’s another picture to come up of an amazing chance meeting with Bobby of Am Not Blog fame.


Oh and for any straight readers out there, here’s a picture of A Girl sat at her desk – yes, I suppose it’s true, this is how she comes in to work. 


Oh and you can see the amazing London Preppy / Bobby Am Not Blog meeting here.

Sunday, 17 August 2008

Sunday 17/08/08

So this is the Friday that's Pam's last day at work and for this event our team is going out for lunch, a lunch where I have some chicken breast with salad and chips (hold the chips) and a pint of Timothy Taylor and three gin and Slimline, or gin and skinny tonic as A Girl orders them.

After this lunch, Pam, A Girl, my boss and I find ourselves in a pub and this is when everyone is starting to get quite drunk, uninhibited and revelatory.

At this pub is where my boss decides to recite the story of how he saw me on the AXM magazine cover in a pair of white briefs jumping mid-air a couple of months after I had started working there, a number of events that - apparently - followed the following sequence:

- My boss is queuing in a newsagent to buy some fags
- My boss catches sight of a magazine cover on the shelf and does a double take
- My boss goes back to the office, thinks over this for a few days, passes the story on to some other Directors in the company
- My boss and another Director walk down to WH Smith one lunchtime, locate AXM,
go through page after page evaluating the carnage


But on this drunken Friday afternoon this is just a story that cannot, will not affect me anymore and I am only 87% hoping the earth will open up and swallow me. And as I point out to my boss "if you don't do things like that, how boring would life be". And as my boss points out to me "this is the most exciting thing that's happened to him for a while and he was telling the story to his
wife and friends for months". So it's win-win really.


Then we go back to the office, then not just our team but everyone goes drinking, then I have another two gin and Slimline, then I go to the gym.

But on Saturday morning...it happens.

Everyone knows that nothing, never is meant to go well. Every day is a disappointment, every hour is a slap in the face, every minute that ticks off is a new punishment. However, occasionally, naive people like me will let their guard down and think that maybe, for once, there can be hope out there, maybe things will turn around for you and not everything will blow up in your face. That's when reality decides to check in again and stab you in the back with a rusty sword.

This is what happens on Saturday morning, and this is what reminds me that you can't trust anyone, everyone is an enemy, you will never really have no one ever:

During a text conversation with Anthony, he asks me what I'm up to this weekend and, in a jokey way wanting to let him know that I've dyed my hair black, I reply: "this weekend I'm mostly trying to get rid of the deep black dye in my hair, so I can look normal again"

And Anthony - a person I considered a friend, somebody I used to like, somebody I dared trust - punches me in the face with:

"Your hair couldn't get much darker, could it?"

As I'm typing this 37.5 hours later, I'm still trying to pull out the dagger from my heart.