Magic beans, angel dust and Ninja Turtles

I get up at 6am – two and a half hours before I need to leave for work – and have a productive morning, then get to work to be unproductive and, because my boss isn’t in today, I spend the day doing a bit of work, a lot of browsing the internet and no being sworn at.

And because it’s a lovely sunny day, in order to not get too lethargic in the afternoon thus thwarting my plans for a running commute, at lunchtime I go for a walk along the river, a walk cut short when it’s looking very likely that I’m going to get trampled on by the 22,000,030 runners along the Embankment, so I cut my walk short, cross the road and go back to the office to carry on my boss-isn’t-here-so-I’m-going-to-have-a-long-lunch-break thing.

2:45 comes and I’m eyeing up the energy bar on my desk.  Shall I eat it now or wait a bit?  I ponder this for about three seconds and five seconds later the energy bar is no longer on my desk but somewhere inside my digestive tract.  Or on its way there.  Biology was never my thing.

Also in preparation for my run, I’d bought some Gourmet Beans from The Jelly Bean Factory that I’d been eyeing up in WHSmith over the last few weeks, as they proudly state “gelatine free” which means they’re not made of bones and hooves.  Oh no, they only contain shellac which apparently is insect secretion and The Vegetarian Society says to treat it like honey (i.e. leave it up to your conscience whether you want to eat it or not) so if The Vegetarian Society says it’s ok to eat insect wee, then it’s ok with me.  Yum.

At 4:00 I’m bored so I decide to play “guess the jelly bean flavour” (which isn’t just an excuse for gluttony.  As if) and sample some beans and I can’t guess the flavour (I’m also crap at guessing smells; someone was eating Kentucky Fried Chicken in the office the other day and I thought it was fish) but mmmm, they’re very nice and I manage not to eat all of them and at 5:00 I do my boss-isn’t-here-so-I’m-going-to-leave-early thing and then I’m trying to cross the road but a cyclist goes through the red light and I try again and another cyclist goes through the red light and I think OI CYCLISTS, STOP GOING THROUGH THE RED LIGHT AND LET ME CROSS THE ROAD YOU WANKERS and I get to Angel and I get dust in my eye again and I think why do I keep getting dust in my eye when I get to the Angel? and I think ah, it must be angel dust and maybe it’s lucky dust and I go past Foxtons and have a better look through the window at their fridges and I can only see Coke and water and I think maybe I won’t go in there and pretend I can afford a house in Islington then if I’m not going to get any free wine or beer and then I see a trampy bloke pick up half a cigarette off the pavement and I think aah, poor trampy bloke and I go to get a cigarette out of my rucksack to give him then remember I don’t smoke anymore and I run past Hackney Downs station without wimping out and getting on a train and then I’m waiting to cross the road and I see the steep bit and I think I need a jelly bean to help me up the steep bit and I don’t know what flavour it is but it’s very nice indeed and I get up the steep bit and through Murder Mile and I think, do I deserve a jelly bean for getting through Murder Mile without getting murdered? and I decide I do and I recognise it as coconut and think this one’s not so nice and I’m wondering if it’s light enough for me to cut through the marshes and I decide it is and I go to cross the road and the lights are taking ages to change and I think hurry up lights, or it will get dark and I eat more jelly beans while I’m waiting for the lights to change and I go through the marshes and I can see a man on a bench up ahead and he seems to be doing some sort of push up thing and I think why’s he doing that there? and I wonder if I should go back onto the road but I decide to be brave and I go past the stables and I think the horses will save me if anyone tries to murder me, perhaps even Champion the Wonder Horse himself, although he’s probably been dead for about 50 years and I think oh shit, I’ve got to go through the bread factories now, I didn’t think of that and I get to the factories and there’s people working there and I think hooray, maybe I won’t get murdered after all, the bread people can save me, perhaps even Mr Hovis himself if there was ever a Mr Hovis but even if there was, he’s probably been dead longer than Champion the Wonder Horse and I’m wondering who the modern day heroes are and maybe a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle will come and save me but wouldn’t it be a bit embarrassing being saved by a turtle, especially a mutant one? and I decide to save any embarrassment, I just won’t get murdered.

Running stats:
Distance: 5:00 miles
Time: 59:21
Pace: 11:52 m/m
Calories: 435
Productive early part of mornings: 1
Productive later part of mornings: 0
Bosses swearing at me: 0
Energy bars: 1
Cyclists going through red lights: 2
Trampy blokes picking up cigarettes: 1
Jelly bean flavours recognised: 1
Rollins Band
Jeff Buckley
Foo Fighters


My boss hasn’t been in the last couple of days and as a result, I  haven’t had much to do and today I have mostly been trying to keep my eyes open and I go for a walk for a couple of miles along the river at lunchtime in the hope that it will energise me but the afternoon is just as bad and I’m falling asleep and I email Shaun and say it’s raining and I can’t keep my eyes open, do I have to run home? and can I eat the energy bar anyway? and he emails back and says yes you do have to run home and if you don’t, then no, you can’t eat the energy bar and I say too late, I’ve eaten it and very nice it was too and it gets to 5 o’clock and I think ok then, I’ll run home and I get changed and get outside and FUCK, IT’S COLD AND WINDY and when did the weather change? and why did no one tell me it got cold again? and where did this wind come from? and I get to Sadlers Wells and my Garmin gets a signal but before I can show the people of Islington my athletic prowess, I’m stopped by a French man who asks me if I know where King’s Cross is and I think hmm, yes, I do know the general direction but not sure how to direct him and I say errrrrrrrrr, yes, but you’ll get lost if I attempt to give you directions and he says ok then and I say sorry and I decide to walk until I get past the Angel and then a big gust of wind blows and it blows something in my eye and I keep blinking and tears are running down my face and I can’t see and I want to rub my eye but I’ll smudge my make up and look like a panda and my eye’s hurting and it eventually gets better as I get to Foxtons which has got to be the coolest estate agent ever, as it has fridges with beer and wine in it and I must remember to go in there one day and pretend I can afford to buy a house in Islington so I can get free beer and wine and I eventually start to run and my legs feel heavy and I’m cold and wet and I get down the end of Essex Road and I’m feeling grumpier than I have been all day and I thought running was supposed to de-stress you and I’m just feeling MONUMENTALLY PISSED OFF and I realise I’ve forgotten to put my alarm on and I think oh well, it’s not like anyone ever gets murdered in Hackney, is it? and I’m still feeling pissed off and I think I can’t be arsed with this, I’m going to get on the train at Hackney Downs and I get to Hackney Downs station and I haven’t got my glasses on and I can’t read the departure board and I don’t know what platform to go to and I squint my eyes and eventually the numbers become a bit clearer and hooray, there’s a train in 3 minutes and I go up to the platform and the people there look at me in a funny way and I think, what? haven’t you ever seen anyone in luminous yellow hi vis running gear before standing on the platform looking a bit cold and soggy? and I think no, they probably haven’t and the train comes and mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm, it’s nice and warm in here and 99.9% of the other passengers are wearing black and I wonder if I’m standing out in my luminous yellow hi vis top and I think I probably am but I also think I don’t really care.

Far too embarrassing to put on here.  Let’s just say it wasn’t very far or very fast.

Free Alcohol v Running Commute

I originally RSVP’d yes to the monthly London Blogger’s Meet Up, but spurred on by my successful run on Saturday, I decide to try and salvage something in the run up to the Reading Half and do some eleventh hour (ahem) proper training and so when Tracey emails me and says are you coming to the Blogger’s Meet Up to get free alcohol, I say no, I’m going to run home instead and it takes me until I get to the Angel – a mile away from the office – to get a signal on my Garmin (because, like I said before, no Garmin, no running) and I start running down Upper Street and go past Hamburger Union where I went last week before I went to see the Secret Machines and no one should ever eat in there because a) the burgers are crap: b) the chips are crap; and c) the service is crap and I had a nicer Burger King Veggie Whopper Meal in a service station somewhere in between Wales and home (yeah, my geography is shit) last year and after 2.05 miles, my left knee starts to hurt and I’m wondering if maybe I should get on the train at Hackney Downs which I’m nearly at but it starts to ease off and I’m thinking knee, if you’re going to hurt, hurt now so I can get on the train but it stays not hurting and then at 2.90 miles, my right foot starts to hurt and I think I SAID IF YOU WERE GOING TO HURT, THEN HURT BEFORE I’M AT THE STATION because it’s no good being stuck after the station because I’ve no way of getting home as I’ve only got an overground ticket and there’s no money on my Oyster card and I only have my credit card on me and I don’t think buses take credit cards and the buses don’t go to my house anyway but then my foot stops hurting and I get home and because it’s Shrove Tuesday, I make a big Dutch pancake and top it with mushrooms, spinach, tomatoes and cheese and you can see a picture here and it was really really nice and then I do my washing and find out my washing machine’s broken and then I’m really really pissed off and Shaun rings and says how are you? and I say my washing machine’s broken and he says what are you going to do about that and I say you’re going to fix it and he says oh.

Distance: 5.51 miles
Time: 1:09:00
Pace: 12:31 m/m
Calories: 450
Free alcohol: 0
Running commute: 1
Hurting left knees: 1
Hurting right feet: 1
Pancakes: 1
Washing machines that work: 0
The Killers
Polyphonic Spree
David Bowie
Faith No More