Mobile Face…book

So Dan had his answer, putting down his phone.  Of all the strange things he had decided, he was pretty sure Muriel was the strangest of all.  Yes he had decided to move out.  Yes he was.  And yet he had left all of his things in his place in Cambridge.  Even more odd was the decision to suddenly go to Dover overnight.  Not so strange if he had a car…

So it left him in his current position, on a bus travelling to a town half the world away, just to see someone that he barely knew.  That was the truth he was going down for any other reason but to see her.  And why her?  Does he dare even consider it?  Funnily he was happy to piss off down the country and yet not consider why?

She wouldn’t remember.  It was just one night.  One very drunken night but not so drunken for him.  Looking back he was pretty sure she was blitzed on something, maybe E.  He definitely hadn’t been as out of it as her.  He remembered how she had taken his hand and dragged him back out to dance.  He remembered out tune after tune blended into each other.  The lights in his memory sharp and pounding, still disorientating him after all this time.  He remembered how Muriel’s face became more glazed as time went on.

Dan remembered how she had held onto his hand, how she pulled him staggering from the club and got him to find her way home.  She was his first… She was never awkward after, but then he had left early the next morning in embarrassment.  So much of him thought, always had, that she never realised it was him she had brought home.  Dan had really liked Muriel but the dawning light that she couldn’t tell they had slept together… How often did that happen?  Dan wasn’t sure if he felt more cheap because his first time was a one night stand his partner couldn’t remember or care or because the girl he had liked since he first came to uni was so cheap…

He put distance between them and gradually stopped searching her out.  Was that why he left uni?  He paused a bit aghast, surely he wasn’t that much of a putz?


September 7, 2009 at 6:12 pm Leave a comment


Facebook was a strange thing.  She had just received a message off an old friend from uni.  Friend?, more of a casual acquaintance that was in her course during first and second year.  He was going to be down in Dover in the next few days and wondered if she wanted to meet.

Muriel thought back to what he was like, geez what she was like.  She scraped through university and not too well.  She had worked two short hour jobs but it was enough hours for her to decide that there was no time left to study.  She had drank hard, but if the drink was the worst she did… She generally took around three tablets a month.  Of some variety.

Dan was a lazy sod.  Interested in the first break of freedom in his life.  He didn’t drink quite so heavily as most students so it was just his laziness and hanging about that prompted him to drop out towards the end of second year.  She was a bit taken with him but never really interested in getting that close.  He was simply too apathetic for her interest.  She supposed she has been a bit afraid that she could have joined him in his laziness.  Which would have cut short her partying and other wild methods of finding her freedom feet.

And now…  Now she was settled.  More or less, not a great job but a decent apartment she had had for three years.  More or less over her one year boyfriend, a cat and a good DVD collection.  There was a part of her that didn’t want to take the chance of risking her new life.

But then, she supposed, that was why she never got to know him first time round…

August 18, 2009 at 5:30 pm Leave a comment


So there Dan was, sitting down with his house mate’s old ghetto blaster outside, a plate of cooked long sausages with a tub of cheap mustard and a plastic bucket with a mixture of ice, Grolsch and water wearing his house mate’s shirt and smoking his ciggarettes.  Lynyrd Skynyrd was on the radio with some catchy hick rock, he wondered what his parent’s must have been thinking when they named the… singer he presumed.  Maybe he should look into them sometime.

“Won’t you gimme three steps, gimme three steps mister-“

So what now, he had felt productive but now he didn’t know any more.  Cooking is only productive until you start to eat.  He sat listening  to the song and wondered what it was like there, from those hot damp states in southern America.  He listened to his house mate come in and see him through the kitchen window.  How could he hear him looking at him through the window, the string of profanities.

“Hey Pete, I borrowed some stuff but there’s food if you want some!”

Pete rushed in as quickly as he rushed out, looking disgusted at the shirt on Dan, taking the ghetto blaster with him.   Dan snorted in laughter as he guessed Pete hadn’t picked up they were his ciggarettes.  With sudden inspiration he leapt  up and made to his room.

He had a plan and wanted it in action before Pete realised he’d been flicking through his porn mags.

August 4, 2009 at 6:34 pm Leave a comment

Grey Charcoals

He learnt how to barbecue from his Uncle when he was younger.  He used to invite the entire extended family around to his small farm and there have a big hot fry up every month or so during the Summer.  He watched the barbecue dully his eyes in another world.  His tea cooling in the air.

He sipped it every so often as he blankly watched the coals burning.  Best used with grey rather than glowing.  He smiled wryly at that, was that an analogy for life?  Most productive once used up?

Was he himself used up?  He pursed his lips after mouthing some lukewarm grainy tea.  It stayed in his mouth until he grimaced and it forced itself heavily into his stomach.  He looked up into the low clouds.  Well yea he was, he supposed he was no longer the spring chicken he had been and he wasn’t going to be comfortable working in advertising.  He simply couldn’t continue as he had when he first got out of college.

It was all so contrived, so mechanical.  That use not matter to him.  He loved the challenges, now the greatest challenge had been his own invigoration.

He snapped out of it with a shake of his head and ran in to get the sausages before the temperature cooled on the barbeque.  He smiled.  Today wasn’t actually going that badly.  At last 🙂

June 25, 2009 at 2:49 pm Leave a comment

Flicking the Match

After returning from a long trip to the corner shop – its not that Spar had a lot of choice, rather that Dan had a lot of indecision – he lay down some charcoal, lighters and some lighting fluid.  He went inside and put his two bottles of Grolsch in the fridge and filled the kettle.  Following this he scoured the room for matches.

Unsuccessful.  He poured the newly boiled water onto a teabag in his cup and filled it up to the level with milk.  Dipping the bag in and out with his fingers he flung it across the length of the kitchen into the sink.  Almost.  He thought about bringing the cup to his lips but he knew it was far too hot, but the habit of drinking from a full cup was still strong.

Still thinking he ran up the stairs, paused for a moment and opened his house mates room.  Rifling his bedside locker he found his “last pack” of cigarettes a lighter and a packet of matches.  So far his house mate had been smoking his last pack for four months now.

Bringing his tea outside and starting to sip it he lit the fire in the old brick garden barbeque.

June 16, 2009 at 6:58 pm Leave a comment

The Alchemy of Fire

With nothing much to do, or nothing much he could think of doing he decided he would at least do something.  At which point after much confusion and milling around the garden, two and fro like a set of whiskey-crazed squirrels fighting over a single nut, he grabbed his house-mates shirt off the line and put it on.  This wasn’t something he would normally do, his house-mate took his toilet paper back into his bedroom let alone share his clothes.

But fuck it.  He grabbed his sandals and went inside, his keys on the counter.  He paused for a second and grabbed them.  Just upped and went through the front door of the house and decided to go the shop.

Dan decided on a barbecue.  He felt… confident isn’t quite the word.  Stupidly pumped for no real reason.  He had a place to go, a thing to do.  A focus and a goal.

He semi-giggled, catching it in his throat before it escaped aloud.  It was ridiculous to be this pleased over something that minor.  His neighbours he noticed were smiling and nodded friendly to him as he passed.  He happily returned the “hellos”, marvelling at the change the sun made in the community.

But, cocking his head as he thought, he wondered if maybe it was more down to him with his head continually in the sand never paying attention.

May 27, 2009 at 6:59 pm Leave a comment

The First Thursday

He was sitting back with his eyes shut and sunglasses on but he still had a red sheen through his eyelids, it was so bright. He was lying down in his back garden the grass high around him, nearly to his knee while he stood. He just breathed in the warm air, sweating pricking his leg and forehead as he could feel the beads collect. He had spent the last hour and a half out here in his shorts, unmoving other than once to put more sunscreen on and get another glass of water.

His house mate had called out to him earlier, on how it was good to see him up and about. Happy, he had put it. Was he happy? He couldn’t really tell. No, this wasn’t happiness; it was too… dull. Too…

Bleh. Or rather should it be Meh. He wanted to get up and do stuff. But he didn’t know what. He didn’t know what it was he should do. He just saw his life slowly spirally downwards. A picture of him sliding along a giant corkscrew and falling into a narrow necked bottle came into his head. He smiled briefly, before the idea that it was probably only to drown in the wine, came the subconscious retort to himself.

He wanted to cut the grass, clean his room out, wash all the old bags and dish towels. All those really old jobs you never get the chance to do. Clean the house properly, even though his housemates never bothered. Sort his room out to his taste best, even though he would be moving in a few months, maybe. Look for a job, only there was nowhere to look.

Instead he came outside this morning, thinking at least he could shift his arse out of his bed where he spent most days; reading his old books, watching dvds or chatting online. Always planning to do stuff. Here he had no excuses, only to think. But then he realised while out here, all his thoughts were self-serving.

His life before redundancy wasn’t great. He’d planned to get out of his job anyway, find a different field to get into, advertising wasn’t his thing any more. Probably never was. He knew that for a while, before the recession. But he had been looking into where to go and just hadn’t been sure. Now he was out on his own. Without anything to fall back on. His life would take off again. But now he could say the grey monotony unfold in front of him. And he wondered why.

He wondered where.

May 25, 2009 at 2:12 pm Leave a comment

A Redundant Life

Is the story of one man's life after redundancy, its serial fiction so ongoing and not set in stone, so I welcome ideas. My name is Caoimhín and I am a long time writer. I run many other blogs and I'm part of Clan Raven Cub . Check us out! Email me at

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