Tuesday, 10 November 2009

The Wonder of Waitrose!

Well I don't know about you guys but I am very very excited.

As most of you know, Waitrose on Byres Road is opening on Thursday.

I am so pleased that us Westenders are finally getting a Supermarket that is worthy of our obvious superiority. Superiority over not only the rest of Glasgow but over most of the central belt. Most places excluding Morningside in Edinburgh - we're not there yet but we can but dream.

Thing is, for me, Waitrose symbolises everything good and true about your average Westender - one I feel I am typical of.....

I work hard, I have a bustling media job that is exciting and inspiring and one I am very proud of. I associate primarily with other media-types, however some of my friends also work in PR and Promotions or work for charities; an area I'd like to move into once the hustle and bustle of TV and Film gets too much or if I want to spend to spend more time with my two children Gerald and Oslo.

For me Waitrose's impending opening shows that as a society the West End is becoming more competitive with our natural twin city - London.

It pained me to leave the hustle and bustle of such an exciting city where everyone you meet is an exciting and artistic person and where conversationalist and celebrities walked foot by foot with your average less-good person.

I can picture it now.....go to the Botanics with the wife, Oslo, Gerard and Sammie (our lovely three year old Border Collie), have a lovely stroll picking up leaves for the kiddies to do paint prints of before popping into Waitrose and collect some veg, rice and fresh fish for the lovely wife to make her seafood risotto. That evening we'll invite our friends Pamela (Pammie!) and Colin round. We'll talk about their newly built conservatory and how their kid's are getting on (they're hoping Colin jnr will get a mathematics scholarship to Merchanston - how utter brilliant!). We'll talk about how Tony Blair shouldn't have taken us into war in the Middle-East and how we feel terribly let down by New Labour and are controversially considering voting Conservative in the next general election.
We'll probably retire to the lounge where conversation will progress to the early works of Dylan and Kubrick films and their layered genius. By now we'll have had too much Rioja and as Colin and Pammie call a taxi me and the wife will retire to the bedroom where I'll fumble around on-top of her for a brief moment before climaxing in mediocre ecstasy before she's even gotten going.....I'll call her a slut as I drift off into a drunken slumber.

The next morning we'll read The Observer (coz we're liberal like that) before taking the kiddies to the Botanics nipping into Waitrose to get the ingredients to make a lovely soup for the evening.

Life will be bliss - and we owe thanks to Waitrose for that.

If I ever become this person please don't bother shooting me - for I am already dead inside.

Thursday, 22 October 2009

Sometimes Ignorance is not bliss

Ok I've just finished watching the "OMFG how controversial the BNP are on" Question Time.

What a load of absolute drivel delivered by a BBC pandering the masses who were baying for Nick Griffin's blood.

OK, I'm going to point out right now, I am not a fascist in fact I find the BNP party deplorable and think Mr Griffin is an ignorant, miseducated cretin who also has the mis-fortune to be an ugly version of Ricky Gervais.
However; why invite the guy onto the show so you can tear him a part. So you can level the occasional intelligent and indeed relevant question only to then talk over his answer.

The beauty of Nick Griffin and his fellow BNP members are that they are at their most stupid when they are simply allowed to talk. However I got very frustrated that whenever fuck-face started to talk somebody (usually Jacky-boy or Dimbledore) cut-in and moved him away from his point (which one can only assume would be as much bizarre as it was contradictory).

However I suspect this is what the BBC intended all along. They won their viewers over by having the BNP represented on a show that otherwise plods along as part of the regular Thursday night political schedule by giving a hint on controversiality but instead aired a public lynching which served no real political debate and would not have gone any way to sway anybody's political opinions. Those who already stood against the BNP will come away from tonight with the opinion that Griffin has no no political points and is an ideologically confused moron. However those that support him and his policies will claim he was being fought against from all corners audience, panel members and, quite shamefully, the host as well. What is the fucking point? Surely Question Time's role is to inspire political debate not to chastise someone, no matter how much of a moron they are.

Indeed had Griffin been allowed to carry on down some of his lines of thought there may have been more of the comments which appeared towards the end where he appeared to be a more right-wing version of Jan Moir. His homophobic comments have alienated him even more from the domain of the sane public. Had he been given room to breath and put himself across fully I'd imagine he'd have convinced many who thought of themselves as 'BNP supporters' to perhaps think again.

I am very disappointed by the BBC and sickened by Dimbleby.

What a waste of time and over-hyped drivel. I'd rather watch a bull-fight, which strangely probably would've looked quite similar had Straw dressed up a bit more.

On another note how awesome was Bonnie Greer!

Sunday, 27 September 2009

No meat and more than 2 veg.

So here is the plan:

I was thinking 'Is it possible to live purely off fruit and veg for one week?

No idea what got me thinking it....possibly the fact I've been eating like a pig for the last couple of weeks.

Anyway starting tomorrow I'm going to try to eat nothing but fruit and veg. This means; no starch, no wheat, no diary (except milk), no meat, nothing.

I'll probably give up after the first day but I think it'll be an interesting lil experiment. I'm going to keep a daily dairy here of it so you can see how I'm doing.

Here goes:


So I woke up around 7am. Kept hitting snooze on my alarm so I didn't have time to source Breakfast. Got to work and went to the lil shop next door. The only fruit n Veg they did was potatoes. As a result of that and being busy I only managed a breakfast of coffee.
The trainee in our office did a lunch run today. I asked him to get me some carrot sticks and one of those three packs of humous from M&S.....he got me three large humous tubs. So I ended up eating carrot sticks and humous for lunch, washed down with a strawberry smoothie.
I didn't eat again until I got home. I dropped into M&S and bought some sun-dried tomatos, a packet of celery and some guacamole dip, had that with a packet of vegetable crisps, with a diet coke.

So I had dinner about an hour ago and I'm pretty hungry. I didn't feel too bad at all during the day though. Wasn't overly hungry. However this evening I am pretty tired and feel a bit drained of energy but that could just be the 11hour day I've just worked.

Gonna have a cup of tea before bed. Will update tomorrow.


I didn't sleep well at all last night. I was very hungry and kept getting stomach cramps. I also drank a lot of coke and tea last night so maybe had too much caffeine.

Anyway when I got to work this morning I found a banana and ate that with a cup of coffee and started to get worried that nothing but fruit would be very bad for energy etc. So I decided to contact my sister as she is a dietician. I asked her if it was a bad idea; she replied:

well chris.....now that im a registered dietitian (please see hpccheck.org) that kind of information will cost ya! however, i realise you are family and i offer excellent family and friend discounts!!!!!!!! i love you tooo, ocassionally x

So not much help there.

She did later tell me that I should get some protein otherwise I might be close to passing out by the end of the day.
So lunch was a Strawberry Smoothie and potato salad.
I did have some celery on-set today and some sort of dip provided by catering but not really because I was hungry but more because it was offered to me by our hot Spanish floor-runner.

I got home and had a packet of 'natural' crisps (they are potatoes remember!) and some Humous dip.

I also had a couple of beers, coz I can drink what I like. God I love Fraoch!


I died.

The End.

Tuesday, 8 September 2009

10 Things I hate about all of you.

Right, it's been far too cheerful recently over here on My So Called Life.
I now plan to rectify that instantly over this next post.

To do this I am going to list 10 things I hate.....generally involving the the general public but not exclusive to any one group.

1. Retarded Walkers

I tend to walk quite fast, not because I'm always in a hurry to get somewhere which in itself causes a problem when I'm walking down a busy street. I especially hate it when people cut in front of you then proceed to walk at a slower pace than you. Another hate is when people walk out of shops into on-coming people then just feeze, as you then have to dodge to avoid them. Also girls who walk side by side in groups of 5-6; what the fuck is that all about?! God I swear if there were no consequences I'd push these people out of the way.....Connected to this my second hate is....

2. Umbrella Idiots
Why do so many people not realise that when they have have umbrellas as they walk they are about double the size they normally are? Swear to god the amount of times I've been hit in the face by some moron carrying an umbrella it isn't even funny....just get wet for fucks sake. It's Scotland - nobody gives a fuck if you hair looks wet.

3. Mobiles whilst Driving
I'd say about 95% of times I see someone chatting on their mobile phone whilst driving that person in question possess a vagina and two breasts. I'm not sure why I find it so annoying. I think it's the arrogance some people think that they are good enough at driving that they don't have to concentrate on it too much, however more often than not these women are shit drivers. It's not hard to use a hands-free kit. I bought one for £9 ffs! If I ever get hit by some retard on a mobile phone I'll shove that phone where the sun don't shine.

4. Chuggers
Those charity mugging twats who strategically position themselves up and down streets so you have to do a people slalom to avoid them. And why the hell do you feel guilty for saying no to them? They're getting paid to stop and harass people! The worse ones are the ones who try to be funny and pal-ish with you: "Hi buddy, I don't want to ask you for money, I just want a second of your time" (both of which turn out to be a lie. Seriously leave me alone. I give to charity and don't need some dread-locked reprobate in kagool to ask me. Seriously you embody everything that is wrong with the modern world and I wish ill upon you.

5. Two-Faced People
Fair enough most people are not fans of two-faced people however the ones I am talking about are the ones who are all sweetness and light to everyone yet underneath are scheming lil arses. Have a back-bone for fucks sake. I find two-faced people extremely easy to see through and can spot them a mile off. Eventually these people always gets found out and people with enough sense don't fall for their shit but some gullible folks will fall for it, more fool them. End of the day though these people have to live with themselves.

6. Jamie Oliver
Just why?

Seriously.....why does he exist?
If he isn't plugging a shit supermarket he is trying to adopt a new 'challenge' where he will change the world through his cooking. What a load of wank.
Let kids eat what they want to eat - if they get fat so be it. Stop being so middle of the road, you boring big-lipped tosser.

7. Jordan
I used to like her....what the fuck was I thinking.
I hate this Kerry Katona style of celebrity life where desperate oxygen thieves shamelessly throw every aspect of their lives to the tabloids and tv shows only to then act as if they are being hounded and the big bad media is after them. You reap what you sow.
Since this split from Peter Andre (I never thought I'd respect that man) she has seemed to gone on this binge of booze and clubs and crave publicity and feeding sob-stories to the press she constantly mocks.
She embodies everything that is horrible and cheap about today's Heat-magazine enriched world. Where celebrity is a passing fad from person to person and someone like Jordan is someone to be aspired to be like.

8. Morons who go on the X-Factor
Having worked on the show I view the whole show very cynically. You have to see how manufactured the show is to believe it. The producers know exactly what they are doing. They tease these horrible sob-stories where dead brothers and dying kids become a reason to try to get through to boot-camp.
However what is worse than the producers who use these people like actors in a play are the morons who allow themselves to be used. What are you thinking? You know you are not a good singer. You know you are going to be publicly ridiculed and embarrass yourself in front of the nation. The only reason shows like X-Factor keep doing so well is that because Britain is full of these morons. If people stopped going to these shows for the 15mins of fame the shows would stop getting made. It's a vicious circle.

9. I can't count.
Yeah I know this is only 9. I dont care.

I'm off to watch the X-Factor.

Thursday, 20 August 2009

Does it frighten you that we'll all end up as dust?


Yo dude!


That my friends is how they speak in the ghetto.

Not sure where I was going with that....

Anyway. Recently I've been made aware of a very good friend of mine's plight through India. This friend has spent the last wee while volunteering at an orphanage in Southern India. It is home to many children who have become orphans for various reasons. Some have lost their parents to HIV/AIDS, some have even lost their parents as they have become alcoholics and are no longer fit to look after their offspring.

Anyway this wholly selfless act of spending 24/7 at an orphanage doing what they can to look after these children has lead me to question the things I do with my life. And in a sense how little I do to contribute to the world.

When I look at it I work in an industry that is so self-loving it's not even funny. A majority of the people I have come across are so self-obsessed and in their own little world it makes me feel guilty. When you think of the job we do in the grand-scheme of things it pales into huge insignificance compared to the hard work that goes into the work that goes on in a rural orphanage in India or somewhere equally poverty stricken.

So where is my point?

I dunno....


Well I suppose in some ways I'm trying to suggest that we are only inhabiting this world in our current form for what, in the grand scheme of things, is a very short time. We get one shot to shape the character we are and the people we want to be seen as. We get one shot at 'making a difference' (I hate that phrase....it's so wanky). So I have been inspired to do whatever I can to try and make the world I live in a better place, however little that contribution is.
And it's not because I want to clear my conscious or come across as 'a nice person'.
I want to help because....I can.

Anyway.....this is probably the most preachy nonsense most of you have ever heard me spout. It's probably the most preachy nonsense I have ever written, but fuck it, I believe in it. And like I have said before....at least I have the presence of mind to know when I am being preachy/wanky/a twat/an areshol.

This isn't an advert or anything like that, but should you be interested in who/what I am sponsoring you can find out more information here:

I'm proud of my friend.

I promise the next entry will at least attempt to be more fun/funny/less wanky.

Over n Oot.

Tuesday, 4 August 2009

You Gotta Get High Before You Taste the Lows

Ok so I need to apologise for a couple of things:

First of all it's been brought to my attention by one of my many (seven) followers that when a new and enthralling installment of my self-deprecating blog hits the net there does not follow an email to said followers inboxes.
I can only assume the people at blogspot are trying to protect the world at large by ensuring as few people as possible read the recent events that continue to occur in my so called life. Remember when there was that spate of suicides in Wales by seemingly unlinked teenagers - well I'm not saying that I was involved but you know....it could've been.
Anyway as a result I have sent a disgruntled email to blogspot (I haven't really) and I shall continue to link to this blog on facebook - so my 294 friends (all of whom I know really well and know and are interested about me) can keep abreast.

Secondly it's been a while since my last posts and I've unfairly left you on a cliff-hanger following my two (which turned out to be three interviews). Well wait no more....the adventures continue here.....

So had an interview with STV - it was a job doing stuff on their website - not brilliant but a long contract for TV and not bad pay. They said they'd let me know within a few days, they lied. It tooks them over two weeks to get back to me and that was to tell me to piss off.

Nevermind though as by that point I got another job. I was interviewed the same day as the STV job for a film being made in Glasgow with a company called Sigma. It's a pretty good film and it's got a couple of Hollywood stars that I can gawp at and secretly fancy from afar and go red and mumble when they speak to me.

That job started last Thursday and so far it's been pretty good.
Good people, good place and I get a car that I keep and even drive from point to point.
That'll run till October time so hopefully I'll get another job in before Xmas. If not then at least I'll be in Glasgow for Xmas.

On that note I also got myself a flat.

I stole a room off a mate who went traveling to Sweden. It's on Byres Road, it's nice. However one of my flatmates has just decided to move out within a week of me moving in (must of been me watching her sleep at night) so I'm now doing 'looking for a new flatmate' fun. Queue some nice people and some potential Fred West turning up.

On a closing note things seem a bit more settled now. I feel a bit embarrassed being all self-loathing for being unemployed given I was only without a job for about 6 weeks.

Anyway. This hasn't been too preachy or interesting.

But fuck you - I'm not some performing Monkey - at least I try.

Over n Oot.

Friday, 17 July 2009

Reasons to be cheerful.

So after spending the last posts moaning about being unemployed something strange has happened.

I've got interviews, yup that's plural....I even turned down a third interview today!

No idea how I got so lucky - it's good to see what effort I have been putting into job hunting hasn't been wasted though. One interview arose from finding an advert online (something pretty hard to do for television based jobs), the other came from me just calling up a company I found out were making a film and just asking them if I can work on it. It's funny how easy it is sometimes when you just have a little gumption and force yourself on people.....in fact I think I might force myself on people a little bit more in future....and I don't care if that sounds creepy.

I'm starting to see a bit of a clear path for the future now. Glasgow is a calling. I hope.
Granted I might not get either of the jobs I went for today but I'm using the fact that I got the interviews as a positive. Drawing hope from small victories. All this aside though, Glasgow is where the heart is (sorry Edinburgh).

These feelings were cemented all to clearly by today's exploits. Got off the train at Central Station....walking to Pacific Quay a homeless man comes up to me and we get some banter about the poor weather, he asks me where I was off to and wished me luck with my interviews - how frigging awesome is that!
Later on after both said interviews (conducted by people who have a lot less 'superior than you' attitudes I tended to find in interviewers in London) I headed back to Glasgow Uni. Whilst pottering around the QMU I bumped into a mate I hadn't seen in years. Almost instantly myself a 'Fross' had grabbed a table at Jinty McGintys in Ashton Lane and were gabbering away, talking about jobs and bitchin about women.
Later on walking to get a tube to Central Station I bumped into an old flat-mate of 4 years (who was looking sexy as hell), we then again proceded to grab a drink (which he paid for) and chat as if we'd never parted.

It's small simple things like this which may not sound great but I fucking love it.
From going to a place like London where people are rushing and ignoring one another and are so closed off to everyone around them to then go to a city like Glasgow where there seems to be a friendly face round every corner - who wouldn't want to live here?

As for the two interviews - I think they both went pretty well.
Hypothetically if I was to get offered them both it would be a bloody hard decision. One is a production runner on a film with a big Hollywood name in it, the other is working for a big scottish broadcaster which would provide a longer, and probably better paid position.

But I wont get ahead of myself, I may not get either. But one thing is for sure....I miss living in Glasgow.

It's raining heavily outside and I don't care.

Over n oot.

Wednesday, 8 July 2009

Dear Jeremy Kyle, you're the only one that understands....

Ever since I was 16 I've had a job. I even got that job before I turned 16. It was working in Tesco that had recently opened down the road from my house. It was working in the in-store bakery - and it was fucking awesome. I used to love the power I had - I could reduce the doughnuts and slice the bread....

....anyway this has gone off topic. My point is until now I have never been unemployed. And I don't like it. A lot of weird stuff happens when you become unemployed. You stop caring about your appearance, you become so lazy that I even considered taking the car on what would be a 10min walk yesterday and obviously there is the constant concern about money.

I suppose I should just "man-up". This is only my 3rd week of unemployment and some people in TV go for months without working. But it gets sooo discouraging after you've spent the best part of a day sending emails to production companies doing the bull-shit of selling yourself only to get a "we'll keep your details on file" email back - thats if you get one back at all.

Having worked for a TV company I know most emails asking for work get put in the special filing cabinet that looks like a trash can. Yet you do it in the hope that someone at a production company is sitting by their computer waiting to hear from an unkempt, slightly overweight production runner who is looking for work....it might happen!

I suppose it's the nature of the TV/Film industry. People have to scrounge for work all the time. The most frustrating thing is the lack of open-ness in the industry. Jobs, on the whole, do not get advertised primarily down to time and money. As a result it becomes not what you know but who you know. This in turn means the industry is very clique and near impossible to penetrate unless you know someone who works at a reasonably high level.

However I shall not give up. I have a good c.v, fuck that, an excellent c.v. I just need to keep ramming it down people's throats. That said I need to find something to do during the days - there is only so many bull-shit emails one man can send in one day.

I do have a few applications submitted so please wish me luck.

Oh, just got an email through.....I'm about to read it but I'd put a lot of my already fast disappearing money on it containing the words: "unfortunately" and "keep on file".


Over n Oot.

Sunday, 28 June 2009

Wear Sunscreen

How are you?
You good?
Sitting Comfortably?

Then I shall begin.

Gonna warn you from the outset though that this is one of the more "emo" and "angsty" entries so if you're not up to it I'll understand if you leave now {pauses for people to click the "back" button, type in a new url or simply smash up their computers at the thought of angsty Chris}

Ok don't say I didn't warn you....

So, me, Chris. Since university I have made the conscious effort to be an open person - not to hide feelings and to say what I think (usually unless it is at work or around neds....) and I do believe it is the best way to live. People are more responsive to open people, you know where you stand with them, you know what they think about you and it in turn encourages you to be open when dealing with them.
It's vital to be open and honest with friends - otherwise what's the point? Lies and deceit are no basis for friendships or relationships.

The biggest problem that comes from being an open person however is that you leave yourself open to be let down lied to and made to look stupid - it's a pretty big risk but I believe it is worth it because ultimately feelings heal and if you are an open honest person you'll have people around you that you can rely on and turn to when you've been let down.
Yes you may have been stupid to be so open but ultimately the shame is not on the person who has been made to look stupid but on the person who has abused the character.

This then leads to the question as to why some people treat others the way they do? Are they selfish? Are they cowards? Are they scared?
It probably boils down to several different character traits - none of which are necessarily irredeemable nor may they be true reflections on the person who has them. People are often just victims of the circumstances and the times they find themselves in. Unusual situations can cause people to do things they didn't think they could or be people they didn't think they could be.

However despite this it is important to believe in the power of forgiveness and change. As they say in the film American History X: "Hate is baggage". This is one of the truest quotes to ever come from the world of film I think.....well that and "Old age. It's the only disease, Mr. Thompson, that you don't look forward to being cured of." (Citizen Kane). To err is human, to forgive, devine.
It is important to understand things from all sides of the argument. To understand the difficult situations people find themselves in which make them act the way they do. This understanding in turn leads to acceptance.

It is probably important for me to point out here that despite this preachy tone I am not above the sort of person who in the past has hurt people and been selfish and reckless with people's feelings.
However I have stated many times how important friendships are to me and friendships are nothing without trust. Life, if nothing else, is a great lesson on humanity's capacity for compassion and understanding. Teaching us how as people we are merely organisms who have created a community where we interact and crash into one another, before dissapearing in the flash of light that is our lives - relatively short in the grand scheme of things.

On this note it brings me to my conclusion....
Life is short. Too short not to enjoy it or put up with other who abuse yours. A famous speech says: "Don't be reckless with people's hearts, but don't put up with people who are reckless with yours".
Amen to that.

Apologise if this has been vague in content and a bit philiosophical and wanky - however at least I have the presence of mind to appreciate when I am being wanky!

Until next moral dilema....

Over n Oot!

Wednesday, 24 June 2009

Thinking About Tomorrow....

Ok so I'm back.

Like properly back.

Like back home - where it all began.....living between Edinburgh and Glasgow - when friends will allow me to crash on their couch until I can find permanent residence.

But before I can find permanent residence I kinda need to find some sort of (semi) permanent work.

This is a problem in itself as regular work in television isn't easy to come by. In fact if you work on a production it is pretty much unheard of. But, you know, I'll see what I kind find.

I go between different emotions and feelings at the moment. First off I am VERY pleased to be back and back permanently this time. It was such a good feeling walking down Princess Street on Tuesday on my way to meet my mates in St Andrews Square on a lovely summer day and walking adjacent to Edinburgh castle (see attached video for a reconstruction)- you can't buy those moments - well you could for the cost of a plane ticket or the £50 in diesel it cost me to drive back!
However from those feelings of happiness being back in familiar, friendlier surroundings I tend to go to a "WHAT THE FUCK ARE YOU DOING YOU'RE UNEMPLOYED - FIND WORK AHHHHHH!!!!!" feelings.

My original plan was to take a few weeks off doing nothing much at all, not even looking for work. I had a romantic idea of school holidays in my head where me and my friends would hang out in D'Mains park and play footy and then heading to Glasgow to drink in Kelvingrove park, hiding our tins of lager from the police as they stroll by. Of course most of my friends have jobs etc so there is a danger that if I stick to my current plans the only friends I'll be hanging out with during the day are Jeremy Kyle and Trishia - and that would be awful, I fell out with Jeremy when I failed my paternity test....

So now I have itchy feet and started to wonder why I was planning on hanging around doing nothing. My problem is that I am easily bored. So I reckon I'll try to find work sooner rather than later now. Even if it is shitty bar work in Edinburgh in the mean-time just to keep me busy and not eat into the cash I have been lucky enough to save whilst working on Secret Diary.

That said I've only been back for 2 days now so I'll leave the job hunting and script writing till next week - time to relax. However once I have relaxed - IT'S ON!!!!

There is still a chance I might pack my bags and travel somewhere nice like Australia - however I'm not sure if it's for me - I'm not very good round people I don't know - I tend to crawl into a ball and cry when someone I don't know strikes up a conversation with me.

All else aside I do feel like this is a new start, and I instantly felt happier when I crossed the border back home - it was a sign that this was the right choice - London seems year away.

As for next week - it's time to start planning for the future....I was only young once and now I'm middle aged I need to settle down - well at least start working somewhere anyway!

Over n Oot.

P.S. - I hope people are appreciating the new up-beat tone!
P.P.S - I am writing this from Offshore Cafe in Glasgow - how cool is that!!!

Saturday, 20 June 2009

Next Chapter

So this is my last weekend in London (for the mean time anyway) and it's funny looking back.

Part of me feels I've been here for ages but then another part of me feels like I only just got here. It'll be interesting how the time I've spent here will fit into my life overall as I look back at it.

There are a lot of things here I am very thankful for. I've been lucky enough to do a job that I've enjoyed (for most of the time anyway) and I'm very proud to have worked on Secret Diary and looking forward to it airing (ITV2 this Autumn - stay tuned guys!)

The biggest things for me now as I prepare to move back is the sense that I am a little scared of moving back.

It's almost as if I'm starting again and it is a bit of a gamble - I would be able to find work in London within a couple of weeks - whereas Scotland is a bit of an unknown quantity. I could find work relatively quickly but I suspect it'll take a couple of months at least. I have a feeling I am going to go out of my mind with boredom. As a result I am compiling a list of things I want to do while I have spare time and a small amount of spare cash.

- Do a stand-up comedy routine. Probably at the Stand in Glasgow.
- Get a tattoo - inspired by Tom McRae.
- Go to France - to visit Angus at his Vineyard.
- Start running - like long-distance jogging.
- Make another short film - I've been working on a script about a prostitute, I've obviously got them on the brain now!

As well as being a bit scared though I am also quite excited. I'm excited about rekindling old friendships and spending the summer doing the things I couldn't do whilst in London like hang out in Kelvingrove park drinking cider or having BBQ on the banks of Loch Lomond. Those are the reasons I made the decision to come home and I'm going to love every second of it.

Work-wise only time will tell. I don't want to give up working in TV and hopefully I wont have to as things are getting better in terms of programmes being made in Scotland. Then again if I can't find TV work I'm sure I can find something else which will make me happy. The plan is to move to Edinburgh for a short while as i look for work then to move to Glasgow - hopefully to the flat on Sauchiehall St, failing that somewhere else.

Only time will tell....only time will tell - sounds like a great life-philosophy, I feel like a passenger at the moment not really in control but at least I'm happy.

Over and Ooot

Monday, 1 June 2009

Dear London, it's not you, it's me.

Man preaching at Speaker's corner, Hyde Park

Ok, so it's been pointed out by pretty much everyone who has read this blog that I appear to be a depressing and near suicidal recluse.

I should maybe point out - that I am not depressing nor nowhere near suicidal (though part of my life plan is to die at the age of 53 in a hotel room with two hookers and loads of cocaine so that could be classed as planning my death in some way.)

Thanks for your concern though and as it's sunny outside and we are approaching summer I thought I should at long last not only update my blog but also in a shocking move that is completely out of character, write something that isn't depressing. Even more amazing is I'm going to focus on what I actually like about London....so here goes:

Borough Market:
This is without doubt my favourite place in London. It's a massive food market and although it
can get really busy it's always full of amazing stalls and free samples. What's even better is that you can buy some nice finger food then go down to the South Bank and eat AND there is an awesome beer and ale stall where they do wicked drinks. I once spent £100 in one afternoon making what I called the Borough Market pizza which consisted of really good ingredients including clams, mozzarella, prawns mmmm....it was not money wasted! I remember one day going there on a Sunny Saturday with Nicky, James, Shona and Rory - awesome banter - especially the sausage rolls we had at the start - mmmm.
If you haven't been to Borough Market I recommend you go!

Clifford Park:
I only went here for the first time on the Saturday just passed and it isn't anything specificallysummer's day with activity to go to their nearest park with some beers, some music and most importantly some friends and just relax and forget about work. I enjoyed Saturday - it was nice!

Speaker's Corner:
Speaker's Corner is an area in Hyde Park where every Sunday morning people gather to preach, lecture or just vent their spleens on any topic they want. The result is a diverse range of orators some spouting worthwhile lessons on life, some preaching hatred of other races and cultures, others just talking jibberish. Whatever you think of the people talking though I like this place as it is a testament to the fact that we are lucky enough to live in a country where people are allowed to take a stance against anything they like whether it be political, religious or sexual movements (I once saw one guy give a talk on how men should be allowed to rape glamour models - I wasn't utterly convinced but found it amusing all the same). I'd suggest going along there just once and take a morning listening to what some people have to say on the state of our world - even if what they're saying isn't something you agree with you have to admire them for having the balls to say it....

So I guess there are some things in London which I will miss.

On top of these places I will miss, already miss in fact, drinking with the Tiger Aspect crew after work. I remember hitting the Brick Layer's arms on a regular basis getting boozed up on cheap beer then falling asleep on the bus home - if I were lucky enough it would be the right bus, on most occasions though it wasn't!
On this note Dom and Rachael asked me to give them a name check in my blog so here it goes....

Dominic Martin
Rachael Ellis.

It was fun hanging out with folks you can bitch about work with - it doesn't happen so much when you're on production.

On a final note I am looking forward to the summer, it's my favourite time of the year. Not only is my birthday in the summer but it's the time of the year which is rife with Bar-B-Qs, outside drinking, holidays, festivals etc.
More than anything I am looking forward to returning home - I've missed it, London doesn't hold a torch to Scotland.

Over n Oot.

Saturday, 16 May 2009

Quality of Life

For a while now I've been questioning what gives someone a good quality of life. This has lead me to two conclusions:

1/ Someone has a good quality of life if they are happy in their professional life. If they have a job that they are passionate about, that they are satisfied with and they are proud of.

2/ Their social life is complete. They have good friends and a great family life. The relationships in their life provide them with strength and make them happy.

Everything else in between can fall into other catagories or fall into insignificance when compared to these areas in my opinion. For example nobody could claim watching the X-Factor makes them truly happy above having a good job or friends and family. Likewise nobody could say going jogging makes them happy above all else - not without sounding crazy anyway!

My problem recently is that I have found the two areas almost impossible to run together and I have started to question which one is more important - both immediately and in the long-term.

I moved to London as I really want to work in TV and make dramas which influence the way people think and stir emotions within them. I felt that was what I wanted to do and it would make me happy in the long term. Unfortunately I think at the time I took for granted how happy my friends and family made me.
This has become apparent to me since moving to London and having to cope without them all. As I type this it is 5:20pm on a saturday afternoon. I haven't left the flat and haven't spoken to anyone all day. This is not untypical of a weekend for me in London. Over the last month or so it hasn't been as big a problem as I have been working a lot more so had less time to spend alone but it is on days like these today where I recognise what is important in making me happy in life.

I remind myself every day how lucky I am as I truly believe I have the best friends in the world.

My school mates are amongst the best people I know. Everytime we are together we never fail to have a laugh - we look out for one another when on nights out and there is always one of us there for each other. If proof was ever needed of how good my mates are then jump onto my facebook and look at the photos entitled "The Weirdest Day of my Life" where you can see where my mates held a day "celebrating" me.....yes me. They had t-shirts with my face on it, masks of my face, business cards and a 10ft by 10ft poster of my face all of which they took clubbing with us that night and spread the word of "loving Chris Hall". Has anyone ever heard of people doing something similar? I've not, it was very touching but also a little scary - it was like I had cancer and only a few days to live or something! Added to this it was held on Valentines day where a few of my mates had to blow out their girlfriends to enjoy this day - how awesome is that! Evidence indeed of how lucky I am.

My uni mates equally are very supportive. Nicky and James didn't bat an eye-lid when I asked if I could move in with them when I got a job in London - I lived with them for over 2 months and they wouldn't take any money from me....and they never rushed me to move out and were there for me when I went on and on about missing Shona and everyone else - they've always been there for me. People like Malky as well lets me stay with him without any question whenever I visit Glasgow - it's like a 2nd (or third) home for me.

When I graduated Uni I was in a place where I was living in the happiest time of my life so far and what makes being away from Scotland so hard is worrying if I'll ever get these moments spent there back. Upon leaving I was sure that my professional life was going to make me happy....I was wrong.
I now know nothing will make me happier than being with the people I love. I don't ever remember being around my friends and being unhappy. I can think of plenty of times I have been at work and been unhappy! Looking to the future I can't see where I could possibly go in the world of TV which would come anywhere near to making me as happy as I am when with my friends.
Hypothetically if I can find a TV job in Scotland it will go help a lot.
What I do know however is that if I stay in this city much longer it could kill me. Maybe not literally but as the person I am when I'm at my happiest and the person I want to be. I need to go home soon, I don't want to become the person London and the TV industry makes me....

There is a relationship as well I am not mentioning which went alongside my friends in making me happy. That I am not mentioning as I am pretty powerless over it. I know what I want to happen there but it's not something that is purely down to me. I do live in hope that it will be as it once was before but stronger some time soon.

In conclusion - friends = good, being away from friends = bad.

Never underestimate how rich having greats friends makes you....

Over an Oot.

Saturday, 9 May 2009

Tell me why I don't like London?

So it's Saturday and it's my last day off (my first 2 days off in a row for agggeesss!) and I just came back from Wood Green High Street which in comparison to London is a very small high street but it was so busy and loud and cramped it was depressing.

At one point some kid came up to me and said "Oi! You got any fags?" to which I (reasonably) politely replied "No". The young cunt then decided he could swear at me and call me a poofter (on another note I haven't heard someone use that phrase in ages). I challenged him and almost instantly 5 other little cunts surrounded me in what can only be described as an aggressive fashion. Luckily it was busy enough for me to slip away without any more trouble but I felt so angry.....because I didn't have a cigarette to give this little scrotum he was justified in calling me names.

Now don't get me wrong - this type of stuff probably happens on most high streets round Britain but what was very London about it was the two guys who were caught in the middle who instead of helping or at the very least sticking around to make sure I wasn't attacked. Instead they moved away from the kids as quickly as they could with their heads hanging low.

Now there are a lot of reasons for me not being a big fan of this cest-pit of a city but I think above all else is the lack of.....community spirit that occurs. In Glasgow if something simil carridge ar were to happen I'm pretty sure 9 out of 10 times someone would hang around and help someone who was in potential trouble. In this city you keep your head down and look after number 1, it's so depressing.

There is this thing that is in-built in London citizens to look after yourself, focus on what you're doing and don't interfere. If you go on the tube they can be absolutely packed but very quiet. Nobody talks to strangers, whereas on a Glasgow tube if someone speaks to you, you speak back - it's the Glasgow banter.
I think it's the same reason why Londoners don't appreciate the gentle ribbing banter which is common in Glasgow. If you were to gently mock someone (even if you know them) they take it as an insult as you in a way are entering their personal space. It's so bizarre but it's also the reason why I enjoy using it so much - I have started to love winding up up-tight Londoners....

Now I can live with the over-crowding, business and pollution this city has to offer but it's the closed-off nature of the citizens which I think drags me down the most. Worse than anything else though - I find myself fighting to not become one of them. I feel really guilty now when I ignore someone and try every day to be more of the person I wish your typical Londoner was but there is something about the place which makes people more inclined to close them selves off.

Not sure what the purpose of this post is - I suppose I just miss Scotland and the people that live there - I can't wait to move back....sooner hopefully than later.

Stay tuned - next week I'll be writing about the value of friendship.

Till then,

Over n Oot.

Monday, 4 May 2009

Secret Diary'd

So as I work it out I'm more than half way through this job, which is scary for many reasons:

1/ I will be finishing (reasonably) soon, which means I need to find more work at some point between now and then, which opens up a whole new kettle of fish i.e. taping up contacts in the way I hate doing.

2/ If I don't find work what then? It's bloody tough at the moment, and this job was handed to me on a plate by my old boss and my job before that I kinda got by accident and minimal fuss. There are people I know in this industry who have a lot more experience than me who are struggling to find work....personally I blame ITV.

3/ I had always wanted to move back to Scotland before the end of the year but I didn't want to move without finding work first - what's worse - being unemployed in London or Scotland? Actually I know the answer to that but it's more likely I'll be unemployed for longer in Scotland as all my contacts are London based and I don't really know anyone in the Scottish industry.

Which brings me to my main point - what's more important? Being happy with my career or with my social life?
Granted if I stay in London I could potentially get work constantly enough to live but truth be told I'm not very happy in London.
I don't get to see my friends and family often at all (except the awesome James and Nicky and they're moving back to Scotland soon) so would I like to pursue this career at the expense of being happy? This in turn makes me think can I be happy working in another industry? I always had police officer as a back-up career idea but after my run in with them at Xmas last year I was put right off and now struggle to consider another path.

I had always thought of London as a short term plan but now I'm here doing it everything is not so clear - this isn't work experience - it's work and part of me feels leaving London undoes all the hard work I done over the last year....

Added to all this is another certain relationship problem I'm not going to go into but needless to say would benefit from me being back in Glasgow.....

I think everything would just be easier if BBC Scotland gave me a job developing dramas for them. That would be nice - my rate is (at least) £375.

I look forward to hearing from you and coming into the Quay for a meet and greet over coffee.

Over n Oot.