Marijuana, Valium, and The Sign

Over the past few months, and since becoming strongly acquainted with my best friend Jimmy, I’ve become quite accustomed to a combination of things that certainly doesn’t guarantee a night of premium comfort, sophistication and royal banter. When Jimmy first introduced me to cannabis, sitting on top of a giant metal sign in the middle of the night wasn’t exactly what I had in mind. But heck, we were only ever half a Valium tablet away from having a dreamily fantastic time on top of a traffic control sign.

How do I get myself into these situations? It doesn’t matter who I’m with or what I’m planning on doing, I always seem to end up in situations that no one else on my Facebook friend list could ever possibly get themselves into. This has advantages and disadvantages though because it means that it regardless of how monotonous I predict the night is going to be, I’m always aware deep down that a major plot twist is inbound and I’ll end up doing something crazy, like climbing a giant 20 foot tall traffic control sign next to a busy dual-carriage way.

Marijuana is the best thing that’s happened to me since my discovery of masturbation. Yes, it’s that good. The sudden injection of euphoric joy and comfort are sublime, and it hasn’t affected my everyday life in any noticeable way whatsoever. I can now officially call myself an apprentice ‘toker’, having been smoking at least 3-4 times a week for the last couple of months, a title I’m not sure if I can be proud of yet. The only thing that marginally concerns me about my newly found love for weed, is the idea that it’s a gateway drug – that it’s a drug that will lead me onto consuming other, more harmful drugs, like Valium for example. It’s also painfully expensive.

For those of you lucky individuals out there that haven’t got a clue what Valium is, it’s a small (often blue) anti-anxiety tablet prescribed by the doctor for people who struggle to sleep or for people (junkies) that require strong pain relief. I may or may not have devoured a full blue tablet last week due to an uprising of curiosity regarding the drug. Needless to say, after thirty minutes after taking the pill and a couple of joints, I was positively ‘rekd’ and could barely walk. It was a novel experience though, and as much as I try to stay away from tablets (because I know they could be genuinely harmful to my life) I’m sure it will happen again. I’m just not sure when, or where.

Jimmy and I have a very odd tradition. Every time we meet up, I always seem to end up manipulated into walking him half way back to his house, and en route, we pass this large metal traffic control sign – the ones with the big orange writing that warn drivers about traffic and weather. By the time we approach the sign, we’re usually in our own dreamy worlds and about a month ago, while passing, we decided to climb the 20ft. giant for the sheer purpose of feeding the unrelenting curiosity that was slowly chewing up our insides. We usually pass the sign at around midnight, when there is little traffic, but scrambling our half-zombified bodies up the freezing cold ladders (which only start halfway up the sign in order to prevent idiots from climbing it) and perching our cold skinny arses on the small metal platform where workers do all the electrical maintenance, is no mission for the faint of heart. Once you’ve committed to the climb, there’s no going back. And, you’re in plain sight of any oncoming traffic.

After reaching the top for the first time, hearts racing, we knew it was totally worth the risk of being caught and arrested. I mean, the view was nothing short of crap and it was achingly cold and damp at the top but the feeling that we’d actually just climbed a 20ft. sign and the world didn’t give a single fuck, was a feeling I’ll never forget.  We laughed hysterically the entire time we were up there, without a thought about how we would get back down again. That was the first thing in my life I had committed to that could genuinely have gotten me into a lot of trouble, and the thought of that gave me an authentic buzz I’d never experienced before.

One might have thought that after the first, second and third time of the pointless ascension up the sign, that the curiosity of the whole ordeal would have deceased. To our own surprise every time we pass that sign, a peculiar instinct kicks in and we’re off and up, trying our worst not to get spotted by the bustling traffic of the night.

A certain procedure is now unknowingly executed whenever Jimmy and I decide to meet up. To kick things off, we rendezvous at the grit bin located at the end of my street. Then, we head of to the stuffy old abandoned factory to smoke our blissful indulgences and talk about ISIS and other conspiring theories. And after that, we walk towards my local petrol station for munchies (sandwiches), trying to avoid eye contact with any sane human beings as we do. After this, Jimmy usually doesn’t have enough money left for a bus or a taxi (likely due to the petrol station’s extortionate sandwich prices) and therefore manipulates me into walking him half way back to his house, to which, I usually do. Halfway back to his house stands the sign. We then climb the sign, laugh, eat and smoke. These have been some of the best nights of my life.

I’m trying to enjoy every second of this crude lifestyle while it lasts.

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I Can’t See any Future Vision of Myself

I’m a man of many dreams and ambitions, yet somehow I’m absolutely clueless to where I’ll be or what I’ll be doing in the years to come. This genuinely scares me. However, it’s a very exciting thought that opens up the idea that anything can happen and at anytime. Since my future hasn’t already been fully determined, it’s up to me right now (the present Frank) to shape my own destiny, and take my life in whatever direction I see fit – at the cost of time, money, effort and motivation, of which I only have time. I’m currently working to obtain the other three.

Since leaving school at the age of seventeen, any hopes or dreams of progressing onto further education in a soggy pursuit of wealth and fame was expeditiously eliminated. I left school having failed every single exam in the last year due to an unforeseen interest in the opposite sex and ended up studying low-level engineering in a college department down at an old World War Two dockyard. Believe it or not, I failed that too, but it wasn’t by virtue of girls…trust me on that one. Currently, and by some miracle, I’m a chef at an Italian restaurant cooking all sorts of pastas, pizzas and breaded mozzarella dippers. I never aspired to be a chef, but after applying to become part of the bar team at TGI Friday’s in Edinburgh, I was offered a job as a line chef in the kitchen. To this day, I have no idea if obtaining that job was a crude mistake or just some form of sick joke designed to make me struggle at life even more than I currently did. Either way, I got my foot in the door and I’m now working as a chef at a bog standard Italian restaurant. Even just a year ago, the thought of being a chef would have caused a caused my head to shake in chronic disbelief. Yet, here I am, rolling pizza dough ‘n’ trying to not to plateau – like a mad boss.

This proves my point though, anything can happen and it can happen fast. Who knows where I’ll be or what I’ll be doing in 2015. I could be a metropolitan traffic warden in Peru or a sandbox supervisor in Denmark, the possibilities seem endless. There’s probably a higher chance that I’ll end up fucking up the job that I currently have and become unemployed and poor, following a common past tradition.

I have an unrelenting appetite for ambition. For one, I’m  inexorably desperate to travel. I’ve never been out of Scotland and therefore longing to go on life-changing adventures in countries that I’ve never set foot in before. More specifically, I am very keen to ascend the Great Wall of China. But not the seductively refurbished tourist ridden parts. The real adventures lay within the derelict sections of the wall where one slip or trip would result in plunging face first into a grimace of ancient rock. All I need is £5000, a toothbrush and a camera that doesn’t resemble the video capabilities of a broken toaster.

I also possess this unwavering desire to get rich, and maybe famous. I’m always thinking about money, and can never have enough of it. This is likely the reason why I used to gamble so much (I don’t now because I have nothing to gamble with). I’m constantly finding new methods of making money. Last year, while jobless, I set up a an affiliate marketing account online and started generating £150 a week with only two assets: time, and a half-broken netbook with a painfully limited CPU speed. It’s the little things in life that make me happy, but if I was rich, oh ya bandit, would I make a life for me and others around me. Fame isn’t such an essential to me but it’s not something I’d complain about if I had it.

People at my work don’t believe me when I tell them that one of my ultimate dreams in life is to wield the pen as a writer. I suppose it is quite ironic that while I hold down one of the most hands-on jobs positions on the planet, I yearn to do a job that ultimately uses 100% brain power and very minimal muscle power. I’ve always thought of myself as preferring physical work over work that exclusively involves the mind, which was certainly reflected in my school years, but after struggling as a chef for a few months, I’ve quickly realised that my brain is a lot more athletic than my arms and hands! Let’s just say that being a chef has certainly been a convincing learning curve for me, and not something I feel I could locate success and passion in.

With all of these chimeras floating around fantastically in my head, there doesn’t seem to be an strikingly obvious avenue for me to walk down that will lead me to any of these dreams. I have very little money, terrible spending habits and only enough qualifications to weasel my way into another stuffy college. I understand that if a person is to convert a life ambition into a reality then there are a cascade of challenges to be overcome, and many sacrifices to be made – it requires a maelstrom of time, money and effort.

I’m still thriving to obtain all three of these life essentials before embarking on my mission to become rich by writing the first ever novel on top of the Great Wall of China. But until then, it’s life in the kitchen for me.

I Love Smoking Cigarettes, but is it Worth it?

Cigarettes are amazing little things…to nicotine addicts. I’m trying to outweigh the seemingly limitless con’s of smoking with the rare pro’s but I’m not sure if it’s possible yet – it’s certainly an ongoing project of mine. I love smoking, but there are so many things associated with smoking that scare the hell out of me, such as the fact that the tar will eventually turn my teeth and lungs black and I’ll die by heart implosion by the time I’m thirty. I’ve been puffing away regularly for around five months now, with a combination of fear and pleasure running through my veins simultaneously. With my five months experience with the cancer sticks, I think I’ve obtained the warrant to share the riveting facts about smoking and what it entails.

Smoking feels fabulous (most of the time). After a long and hard days work, a blissful glass of wine and a cigarette is the premium combination for anyone that’s not rich. If you are rich however, then the addition of a cigarette while you immerse into a steamy pool of bubbles and a bottle of brandy is also dangerously deluxe. Cigarettes do pose as an effective method of relieving stress, there’s no question about – nicotine physically relaxes the body and the mind. The euphoric feeling of a morning cigarette is something I also highly recommend you stay away from, because it’s heavenly to say the least.

It does reek though, and your left with a taste in your mouth that’s nothing short of repugnant for a good hour afterwards. This is the most obvious con of smoking and the risk that frightens me the most. After smoking a cigarette, your fingers will also resemble the smell of lingering smoke if you don’t thoroughly scrub them with soap and hot water. Your clothes may also transform into a bouquet of smoke if you don’t spray enough Lynx Africa in the morning. This is the most burdened part of smoking for me but at the moment I’m half-willing to make the sacrifice.

I’m not rich (did I fool you?) and smoking is an extortionately expensive habit that will swiftly deprive you from the finances you receive from your minimum wage job. It might not seem like a lot of money when you first embark on your journey to lung cancer, but after a couple of months (when you start buying them more often) you’ll probably realise that you’re actually spending £10-£15 a day on these smokey treats. Due to small pockets of financial turbulence riddling my life at the moment, I’m currently smoking my mum’s cigarettes – that’s if she’s actually bothered to leave any butts next to the compost bin at the back of the garden. Smoking is expensive, and it will cost you a fortune in the long run.

Here’s the most obvious association of smoking and the risk that repels people the most – allegedly, there’s a high chance that you’ll die younger than people who don’t smoke. Unlike a lot of people, this really doesn’t bother me. I’d rather live a shorter life doing things that I enjoy rather than a longer life hiding in the shadows, away from the things that I know I want. To an extent, life’s far too short to be worrying about calories and cancer. Obviously, cigarettes do physically drain the nutrients from your body over a significant  period of time and they are destined to affect your health, but until the day comes that I can’t rake the compost bin for my mum’s cigarette butts because I don’t have enough stamina, then I’ll keep doing it.

Let’s just agree on one thing here, smoking is cool, but only exclusively to the people that were cool before they started smoking. If you’re standing at the front of the job centre with your left leg up against the wall in Umbro cottons and a shiny red Adidas track suit top, then you probably don’t squeeze into the category of being a ‘cool smoker’, and you should probably find a job. However, a leather jacket in partnership with a delicately slicked back hair-do will take you right back to the 80’s and you’ll look far more wicked than any of the schmucks from Grease.

To put all of my points to bed, I smoke cigarettes because I enjoy it, not because I need to quench the endless cravings. I could stop if I wanted to, but why would anyone stop doing something that they enjoy? Life’s short, and I plan on indulging in as many valuable experiences as I can, within reason, with the life I’ve been gifted with. If you’re a non-smoker however, then avoiding the glory of the nic sticks is probably the wisest idea – it’s not worth your time, money or lavish clothes. Cigarettes are like Pringle’s, once you open that packet and take one, you won’t stop. Nobody in the history of mankind has ever just eaten one Pringle.

I’m Fairly Sure My Best Friend is a Killer – PART FOUR

Jimmy initiated his final move, hounding the panic-stricken man in the face with an unrestrainable succession of lethal blows to the face. The man could only do as much as let out a silent gasp of pain and fear as any sound that dared to attempt to make it way out of the man’s mouth was only battered straight back in again by the frantic strikes to the face by Jimmy. Bemused viewers jeered and roared at the immense scene of destruction and torment that was flashing before their eyes while the the bearded man’s friends readied themselves for intervention.

All of this happened in the space of around thirty seconds, with the bearded man’s friends stepping into the fight just before Jimmy was able to gauge his eyes out. A large, bear-like gentleman with stale red hair and an Adidas tracksuit bolted across the scene of the fight and trucked Jimmy square in the face with a clumsy heavy right fist to the back of Jimmy’s head. The drugs and alcohol devoured by him earlier seemed to soak up most of the impact and pain as Jimmy appeared remarkably not phased by the momentous blow he’d just eaten to the back of his frazzled head. Needless to say, the punch delivered by the bear-like character did enough to barge Jimmy up and away from the bearded man who was struggling to inhale a breathe at this point, never mind walk. Astonished by what I had just seen, I strutted over to Jimmy, who looked adamant that it wasn’t over, and asked him if he’s alright. Evading my question, he triumphed his abuse towards the bearded man. I told you I would f#cking do you! I warned you all, fuckin’ c#nts!, he sneered. The bearded man, desperate for retribution in another round of ‘let’s see if I can lose my eyesight this time’, taunts Jimmy with the same childish phrase;

‘Faggot! Faaaaagot! You’re a faggot!’. The man was clearly lost in a bottomless pit of pain, dizziness and drunkeness but everyone in the car park at that moment still looked incredibly sober in comparison to Jimmy, who barely even knew his own name.

Jimmy, who knew he’d gotten the better of the bearded man, now did something that I can only show great respect for. It was this very action that restored my withering faith in him.

He walked away. He didn’t run, speak or even create eye contact with the gang, he just walked away in the direction of the bar entrance, saying nothing as he did. Slightly confused to why he was headed towards the entrance of the bar that had closed at least ten minutes ago, I followed him.

One of the bartenders stood eagerly at the door perplexed by the rumours of a fight he’d likely just been told about. Jimmy, who had lost all touch with reality at this point, ignored the shower of abuse that was pouring over the roof from the other side of the building, and quite simply, asked the bartender (to whom he worked with) for a bottle. The bartender casually replied stating that the bar was closed and that he could no longer sell alcohol. A look of total discombobulation swept over Jimmy’s face as if he’d just been asked to dissect the meaning of the Universe.

‘You’ve had far too much to drink anyway, Jimmy’, the bartender consolidated.

Jimmy then said possibly the most self-destructing thing a man could ever say to a person who shared the same workplace as him.

‘It’s not for the alcohol! I need a bottle so I can kill every last one of those pricks ’round the corner there!,’ he exclaimed, essentially signing his own resignation form.

The bartender naturally laughed, the casual look of the bartender mysteriously looking as if he could relate to the situation Jimmy found himself in, as if he’d been in identical situations time and time again. A hideous tumour of anxiety was growing in Jimmy’s brain, haunted by the bearded man and his friends around the corner. The drugs and alcohol controlling Jimmy’s mind and body then decided to dismantle Jimmy’s job security prospects even further by bluntly asking the bartender for something even more grave than the bottle.

‘Go into the kitchen and get me a blade’, Jimmy directed, as if it was a common question asked on a daily basis.

‘A blade!?’, screeched the bar tender, taken completely off guard by the severity of Jimmy’s question. Jimmy scowled at him furiously and then began ravenously searching through his own pockets. The bar tender discretely closed the bar entrance doors, locking them comprehensively on while he did.

And  there we were, back to square one of the night – standing directionless in the freezing cold of the night under a phantom of dark grey clouds.

We began to walk away into the night, bombarded with the childlike abuse from the bearded man as we did. The man’s friends, who knew it was over having seen him beaten to a pulp on the floor of the car park, tryed their best to contain him. He continue to ring the words “Faggot! Faggot! Faggot!” through the hollow streets of the night but Jimmy, surprisingly enough, wasn’t in the least bit vexed by the man’s taunts and continued marching away from the building without a hiss. We blundered shoulder to shoulder along the pavement for five minutes before Jimmy eventually cut the silence.

‘I was ready for it’, he musked.

‘Ready for what?’, I asked.

‘I had my thumbs ready! I was seconds away from pushing my thumbs into his eyes! I could easily have blinded him!’

‘Oh yeah, right’, I said with a convincing sincerity in my voice.

I made it a temporary policy that night just to agree with everything Jimmy said in order make the journey back to my house seem like a walk to the post office rather than a hike up Everest as much as possible.

‘I just wish I had my blade on me, I would have shanked every last one of the little c#nts!’, he exclaimed.

‘I know Jimmy, I know you would’ve’, I said.

I took nothing but pleasure from the entire scene of the fight. From the verbal abuse to the physical chaos, the entire thing was a free show of horror and excitement that was like nothing I’d ever experience before in my entire life. I know, it’s a terrible thing to say given the fact that Jimmy could easily have killed someone given he had been armed with the appropriate tools. It was an eye-opening experience that gave me a deep insight into a world that I’d never seen or heard of before.

Jimmy’s rare honourable side meagerly began to shine through to me as  as we continued to trudge down the icy pavement, Jimmy persistently apologising for what he’d forced to watch. I appreciated that, but at the same time my thoughts could only tell me to thank him for the gift of an experience that he’d created for me; a lifetime experience that I’ll never forget.

But it wasn’t over, for we came across a long set of stone stairs leading up to a hillside forest a couple of minutes later, to which Jimmy flew up frantically without a whisper and disappeared into the darkness. I reluctantly began ascend to the top to greet him slouched at the top with his drowsy eyes focused absolutely on the base of the ancient steps.

‘What on Earth are you doing!?’, I quizzed.

‘Shut up! We’re waiting for those wee c#nts o walk past so I can burst everywhere single one of them!’, he insisted, in a calamitous tone. ‘Just you wait, I’m going to smash every single one of those dirty little scumbags’, he continued with significant grit in his tone.’

I tried many times to tell him that the bearded man and his friends whom he’d fought earlier had left the bar in the complete opposite direction to us, but Jimmy was having none of it. We sat there silent, time dragging on for more than fifteen minutes before Jimmy’s fried brain realised that I was correct in what I had said, and was not “just trying to suck the fun out the situation”, as Jimmy had so crudely put it.

Our odyssey through the silver of the night continued for another five minutes, Jimmy wreaking of alcohol and damp car park. The night was over, but the experience had just begun. In hindsight, Jimmy made a lot of tragically poor choices that night, but any form of consequences for his actions were non-existent. By some miracle, he kept his job and in his next appearance in my presence he appeared with only minute bruises exclusive to his lower back. The only retribution he faced was waking up early afternoon the next day to a blistering hangover. As for the bearded man and his friends, I haven’t heard Jimmy mention them since the incident.

Jimmy is likely a negative influence on me and anyone he has and will ever meet throughout his life, having already exposed me to drugs and violence after only knowing me for a couple of months. But what he has given me is worth more than most other friends could ever offer me; a lifetime experience. A life experience that will grip my conscience until the day of my final breathe, one that will guide me through significant paths of my life until I eventually witness something even more striking. Although I’m fairly sure Jimmy is a killer, I will stick by him as his best friend for as long as the nights are black and my blood runs red. I am his apprentice, and he is my best friend.

I’m Fairly Sure My Best Friend is a Killer – PART THREE

After dashing up to a stranger and shouting the words “What you saying!?” in a tone that even Satan would be proud of, Jimmy committed himself to a pointless confrontation with an older man who had the safety net of his friends to back him up if this things got messy. In the curious eyes of those watching, Jimmy had just thrust himself into a position that no man would ever desire to be in. Surrounded at his own workplace by a group of startled, half-drunk older men, the conflict began with a number of harsh pushes and minor punches being delivered to the now nervous looking Jimmy who did nothing but look like an innocent puppy that had just be told off for pooping on the floor.

It wasn’t long before Jimmy was flying around the car park like an out of date potato skin in gale force winds. I was stunned, not just because this was my first taste of real life violence, but because Jimmy did nothing to fight back other than a few meaningless pushes. After all the legends of fighting he’d proclaimed about in the previous few months, I was just waiting in immense suspense to see him in action. The enraged bearded man, backed up by a shadow of friends, progressed on to hook Jimmy on the left side of his face which sent him tumbling to the glossy black ground of the car park. This would have been an ideal time for someone to jump in for the greater good of humanity, but I was far too immersed into the vigor of the action to even consider trying to prevent any further violence from occurring. Not that I could have swayed too many decisions anyway as by this stage, the group of older men, specifically the one Jimmy had devoted his rage against, was livid with anger, and now very keen to see Jimmy bite the pavement that night.

Jimmy bundled gravely to the ground a few times in the car park that night but the only words that came out of his mouth were “This is my work, I don’t want to fight!”. This was followed by a rather desperate preaching that he “didn’t want to hurt anyone” and that it was “all just a big misunderstanding”. However, it wasn’t long before I realised that this was all part of Jimmy’s master game plan.

This was Jimmy’s workplace! Of course he couldn’t be seen on the cameras as the one that instigated the violence. Obviously, Jimmy had made the crucial mistake of blatantly sprinting up to the bearded man’s face and shouting in impending fury into his alcohol curdled ears, but Jimmy had made certain that he was not the first one to envelope the first physical contact and this therefore placed Jimmy in the position where he could now escalate the violence on terms of self-defense. I am also quite sure that Jimmy was audaciously waiting for the opportunity to fight alone with the man, who had now allowed Jimmy to pick himself back up from the hallowed floor of the car park.

Jimmy had manipulated the bearded man into thinking he was any easy target by giving him the honour of the first few hits, which had enthralled the man with confidence. The apologies and desperate acts of kindness only spurred the bearded man on by giving him certainty over who would most likely come out on top in the event of a proper fight. He had him exactly where he wanted as he solemnly invited the bearded man to a one versus one brawl fight on the soggy patch of grass behind the bar building, cleanly out of the exposure of any gazing cameras. To the bearded man’s delight, it was game on.

The two opposite characters marched around the twisted corners of the building towards the dark dampness of the grass in unrelenting fury and passion. The man removed his tight cotton t-shirt unveiling an armoury of candid bulk and an array of muscular dominance as enticed viewers began to multiply into a horde closely behind. Jimmy launched his jacket at the ground revealing a neatly ironed checked shirt, not in the slightest bit fazed by the stocky bearded man and his notorious six-pack abdominal stomach of steel. The man’s friends issued Jimmy a final warning, chanting things like “You’re just young! You don’t know what sh#t you’re getting into here!” which only bolstered the confidence of Jimmy and his ferocious opponent. As I followed anxiously behind the band of men and anticipating viewers of violence, all the stories Jimmy had enlightened me with in the past were all fitting together. The movements he described and his methods of fighting seemed all too familiar.

The unforgiving wrath of the two opposite characters gave in to impatience at this point and they froze to face at each other at the left side of the building, desolate from the soft grassy haven of the lawn that lay just ten feet away. In a jolt of movement, the eyes and arms of the two men locked on to each other, leaving them stagnant, shooting fierce dagger’s into each other’s. Eyes to eyes, the alcohol and drugs of Jimmy shot evil into the man’s unknowing soul. Jimmy had always said that he did that before a fight, and that if the other person stopped making eye contact with him, then he knew he’d already won. I can’t even contemplate what it would have been like to gaze into the wide, towering eyes of Jimmy at that moment, but I could somewhat sense the pounding fear off the man who evidently lost his confidence at this point as he glanced over at his friends for reassurance. Jimmy knew exactly what he was about to do, and he knew he was going to win.

I wasn’t sure what would happen next. In fact, after seeing what happened to him at the front of the building in the car park, and the compelling physique of the bearded man, I was seriously considering trying to draw the conflict to a close and talking to both sides of the party from a neutral point of view as I now feared the worst for my best friend Jimmy. In the flash of a snakes eye, Jimmy seized the torso of the bearded man and frantically flipped him under the palm of his, where he then advanced on to slam the now forsaken man to the crisp hard floor of the jagged concrete ground. Bare backed, the man struggled like a drowning fish on board a fishing a vessel under the terrorising weight of Jimmy. All that could be seen at this moment was the tall thin back of Jimmy and the occasional sight of the fist of the bearded man stretching round to try to contain Jimmy with a few lethal blows to the kidneys. By some miracle, the inexorable strength of the bearded man enabled him half-way up off the cold hard floor of the car park, but merely at knee level, as Jimmy tenaciously kept his upper body strength wrapped around the shoulders of his enemy like a boa constrictor tightening its grip around the helpless body of an antelope. Locked tightly, Jimmy then made his final and most engaging sequence of moves. He had the man’s face exactly where he wanted it, tucked down low and exposed perfectly for a few glorious uppercut punches to the face.

And that’s exactly what Jimmy did. The ever-expanding crowd of shreeking half-drunken girls and jeering teenagers and men looked on in vicarious horror as the dominant blows from Jimmy began to shudder off the aghast face of the bearded man.

I’m Fairy Sure My Best Friend is a Killer – PART TWO

Upon meeting Jimmy at the pub next to my house, to which I was already joyfully gargling away with cigarettes and cider, I knew he wasn’t going to be his usual self, or rather, the only slighty dodgy nineteen-year-old teenager that I had become accustomed to over the previous months. All of the previous times we’d met, he would only have had a cheap bottle of Tesco priced cider at the most, which meant he had only ever been in my presence in a reasonably sober state of mind. His first sentence to me in the pub that night signified to me just how different he was under the influence of certain illegal and legal substances.

‘I canny have any more to drink, I’m already malkied’, he murmured. He followed up with ‘Frank, you have no idea where I’ve been or what I’ve done tonight’ which is Jimmy’s signature line for informing me that he’s taken a lot of drugs, drank a lot of drink, and everything in between.

Sitting at the back of the pub sipping away at my cider, Jimmy could only smile and laugh at anything and everything I never said. A strict combination of cocaine, valium tablets, marijuana and of course, alcohol, had left Jimmy in a very cheerful world of magic and comedy, it seemed. I enjoyed his presence. The music was somewhat therapeutic, the atmosphere was motivating and everyone seemed to be having a blast of a time as we sat protected in the warmth of the Tavern. Upon the pub closing at twelve, we swiftly headed for the next bar which closed at one in the morning. Incidentally, this is the same bar that Jimmy worked at, and still works at to this day, despite his cruel and unforseen actions on this night.

Walking to Jimmy’s workplace was one of the longest and harshest walks of my life. The air was stagnant and brittle and the pavement was like stumbling over a cold and endless tombstone.

‘I’m going to f#cking kill someone tonight, he slurred. Honestly, I’m ready for it, I’m in the mood for a fight tonight. The first person to start something is getting their eyes gauged out’, he continued in a seriously malicious tone of voice.

I couldn’t believe it. I had heard an abundance of stories from Jimmy about the troubles he’d wormed himself into in the past regarding fighting and violence, and they all stemmed from this kind of chatter. Even though I wasn’t sure if he would actually hold true to what he was saying, I still somehow knew he wasn’t joking around and that if someone did confront him in an aggressive fashion, then something serious could ignite. His sadistic speeches only got colder as the chilling midnight air tightened around our pale bodies.

Approaching the end of our glacial stroll to Jimmy’s workplace, he then resorted to saying some of the most sadistic things I’d ever heard anyone say in my entire life. I like to think it was the snake of drugs and alcohol tied up inside his body that was talking, not him.

‘See that Becca at the bar, she’s getting battered tonight’.

‘Why?’, I asked nervously.

‘Because it’s fuckin’ freezin’ mate, I don’t think I’m actually gonna be able to make it eh!’, Jimmy blundered.

I couldn’t have thought of a better excuse to go on a killing spree myself if I tried.

Shocked at what he’d just preached, I fell silent and focussed only on evading the cold by slipping into the bar with Jimmy.

After standing at the bar half legless for approximately twenty minutes, Jimmy forcfully enters into a risky conversation with one of the female staff members at the bar. Unfortunately, it was Becca, and as much as I wanted to do something to coax him away from the soft innocent personality that stood elegantly behind the bar with a smile as she poured him another drink, I said and did nothing and watched patiently to see what would unwravel. I’m not quite certain what the topic of conversation was between the two but I could easily tell by their facial expressions that it was nothing malicious. After all, if he was going to murder someone, surely he would have just committed to the dirty deed as soon as he entered the building. A warm shower of relief poured over the top of my head as he finished his conversation with the girl and turned to speak to me again. I began to think that Jimmy had been all talk and no action, that he was a man of mind and not matter. It was just the drugs manipulating his angered mind and not his real thoughts that persuaded him to say all of those evil things on the way here, I thought comfortably to myself. I began to enjoy myself again.

A few more drinks and before we knew it, it was closing time and we found ourselves standing outside smoking our 99th cigarette of the night with the other reluctant pub leavers. There were so many people floating in and around the bar at this time and this made Jimmy very vulnerable to the volatile emotions that he had felt just an hour ago previously.

…And so it began.

The talk of murder and chaos and destruction ignited again. Spurting out vengeful phrases like “that little c#nt wants it!” and “Look at that wee c#nt, he’s getting stabbed!”, Jimmy began randomly picking out targets. The whole situation was like a game of mine field and it was only a matter of time before someone was seriously hurt. At this point I was growing steadily eager for something to happen, not just because I had never witnessed the shock and excitement of genuine violence in real life before, but also because I was dying to see if Jimmy lived up to all the stories of villainism he’d proclaimed about in the recent past.

Watching intently for something horrific to spark, I said very little. After five minutes of corrupt minded drivel from Jimmy, he swiftly and suddenly leapt a few steps to the left into the bearded face of a gentleman wearing a tight summer t-shirt and a dark casual pair of jeans, getting as close to the bearded man’s face as seemingly physically possible. The stocky, bearded man was clearly no stranger to the gym and boasted a degree of masculinity that outgunned the pimpled face of Jimmy.

‘What you saying about me!?’, Jimmy viciously screeched.

As the iconic words sprang recklessly from Jimmy’s cursed mouth, a look of confusion with a hint of anger spread across the bearded man’s face and his group of friends like a dark plague. There was no going back now, Jimmy had officially started something that I could only hope he could finish.

I was finally going to discover Jimmy’s true personality…

I’m Fairly Sure My Best Friend is a Killer – PART ONE

Over the previous few months, my perspective on life has swiftly been elongated through the hanging out with my new best friend (drug addict, alcoholic, killer?) that I met at my previous workplace as a chef in a bar in my home country, Scotland. I’m going to call him Jimmy in order to hide his mischievous identity. Jimmy is a real character, and an honest man that never fails to amuse me no matter what levels of alcohol or cocaine run through his polluted veins.

I can honestly say that Jimmy is the sort of guy that could have made it very far in life, but unfortunately was brought up in the wrong neighbourhood with the wrong people. He’s a tall, reasonably scrawny nineteen year old man with gaping brown eyes, a few grey hairs and a nose that points to his ears. His appearance only makes him even more intriguing, however.

People alienated by Jimmy often associate his traits with the bad habits of other people who make the same bad choices as him – assuming that’s he’s a liar, a thief, and a selfish snake. However, I can proclaim straight up that although Jimmy has committed to making numerous poor choices in his life, it’s his honesty and selflessness combined with the fact that he lives in a completely different world to me, that attracts my friendship to him the most.

When I first met Jimmy, who was a kitchen porter at the place I used to work at, or as he puts it, a ‘dish monkey’, which still makes me giggle to this day, I literally thought nothing of him. I was just another person that had meandered into his life by chance and alienated him as just a normal, monotonous teenager that hadn’t made it very far in life. However, the more fate allowed me to converse with him, the more I began to realise just how extravagant Jimmy’s life really was.

To elaborate on Jimmy’s ‘alternative’ childhood upbringing, let’s just say that Jimmy has been an irresponsible adult since before his prepubescent years. I can gather from his stories that he has been abusing drugs and ruthlessly fighting other beings his age since the age of nine years old. I’ve also picked up a few shocking stories of how he ‘pleasured’ some girls around the back of the school shed over one lunchtime at the age of just nine years old. It became clear to me that Jimmy had been exposed to adulthood from a very young age. A final compelling tale I’m willing to share is of his ears, or lack of, dare I put it. He has a bite mark shaped gap at the top of his right ear reminiscent of his friends setting him up in a ruse that allowed older men to ambush and batter him when he was only fifteen. Upon hearing about Jimmy’s ruthless younger years, I naturally no longer continued to think that Jimmy was just an average, boring teenager.

Before a couple of months back, I’d never taken any drugs before, but since smoking my first cigarette a few months back, I was keen to smoke the good ole marijuana, which I don’t regret eventually doing, may I just add. After being left alone with Jimmy in the kitchen to clean up one night, we began to talk about the beautiful drug and sparks began to fly (not marijuana sparks, our banter!). Jimmy spoke poetry about the drug which certainly drove my desire to smoke it even further. We met up later that night to smoke my first ever marijuana joint.

Three months passed and a lot was revealed about Jimmy. We’d been meeting up a strong few times a week for a ‘magic smoke’ and he would bewilder me with his mind-blowing stories regarding his childhood and other tales of drugs and alcohol that had devoured his life to date. Jimmy was an intelligent young man with many ideas.  By this point I thought I knew the ins and outs of Jimmy, that he was a very bright boy who had been let down by his rough backgrounds.

Contrary to my beliefs of Jimmy’s harmlessness, things got interesting last Friday when he got paid and went on an unrelenting rampage of drugs, alcohol and god knows what else. It had been quite obvious to me that although Jimmy was a genuinely charming and relaxed teenager while not on drugs or alcohol, he definitely had some degree of mental issues, which I don’t condemn given the rigid childhood he somehow managed to surpass as a boy. Although not diagnosed, Jimmy is convinced that Schizophrenia is one of the mental issues he has to deal with on a daily basis. I can certainly concur to his claims as more than occasionally there will be times when he argues with himself outside of his own head about insignificant things such as the cold or the fact that a small splatter of mud had made it’s way onto his trainer. Another evident trait of Jimmy is of possessing a very short fuse, in partnership with an irrational state of thinking.

It was Friday the 14th of November 2014 and Jimmy had just been paid which meant two things; alcohol and drugs. As far as I’m concerned, although I’m still not fully sure what trouble he got up to from the hours of twelve in the afternoon seven in the evening that day, I believe he went off to Edinburgh to meet one of his good friends for the purpose of intoxicating himself with lines of cocaine and an overload of alcohol. I received a few ‘hye . meet et pub 5 min’ sort of texts before meeting him at my local pub (which I’m now banned from because of him) for a few drinks. I had just finished work and was completely sober. It was at the point that the reckless and evil side of Jimmy slowly began to unveil itself.

I Have No Money and I Think it’s Due to Sandwiches

I’m almost certain there’s a large quantity of people of there that share this exact same problem…but for the right reasons. I’d love to be able to boast that I’m skint due to taxes, or rent, or other righteous monthly expenses. But no, I’m just poor – and for no excusable reason.

I live with my parents (is that really a surprise?) and I possess the great privilege of not having to pay for any monthly rent, food, or anything of the sort. I live for free and work full-time. The only commodities I have to pay for are my bus fare to my work, and of course, my £30 monthly phone bill. So why am I poor?

The title of this post is a vicious lie may I just hasten to add, I do actually have money. I believe my online bank account holds a very precise £2.67, which should allow me one more trek to my local shop to buy a small quantity of chocolate and fizzy juice.

I don’t even know what I buy that seems to drain my finances so extortionately. I spend like a rich man and save like Iker Casillas at the world cup. The only items that spring to mind that I can definitely say I purchase on a regular basis are cigarettes, marijuana, cider, sandwiches and gambling coupons. I know, I really do live life to its absolute fullest. However, I never seem to go shopping, I rarely get my hair cut and I barely ever splurge money on expensive gadgets like new TVs, computers or mobile phones. So why the small numbers?

Last Friday, I got paid a total sum of £305, and by some miracle, even though it had to scrim me the entire month, I ended up with fizzy juice value money by the Sunday. Now, it may partly be due to the fact that I decided to place £100 on the Bulgarian under nineteen woman’s netball team to beat the Japanese under nineteen woman’s netball team on Bet365 (they drew), but I still haven’t got the slightest clue to where the other £200 ran off to. Of course, I went to my local pub on the Friday and Saturday (which I’m now banned from) but I only ever have a maximum of three-four pints depending on how strong my legs are feeling. I only bought a cheap new jumper and a new pair of shoes from Primark, got my haircut, bought a sandwich (or two), and paid for my bus fare, and yet still, by Sunday I had only two bolts to my name. I never even bought any drugs.

And this has been dragging on for months now. I take my average working class £200 weekly wage, and it’s almost certainly gone by the next Friday payday. Except for that one time where I miraculously managed to save £50, which I’m still extremely proud of to this day. It’s actually one of my few achievements to date in my tragic life.

One thing is obvious though, having no money sucks. It can genuinely screw you over. I met this very ‘forward’ girl on Tinder about a month ago. We didn’t really talk much about each others interests or our lifestyles, in fact we didn’t really talk much at all. We communicated in this strange pictorial way that’s exclusive to the new generation of teenagers – is that subtle enough? Basically, I was going to visit her flat on the upcoming Friday and we agreed that we were going to have a lot of fun. The only items I required money for was wine, pizza and train fare. THAT IS IT. Just a mere £30. I had £50 in my bank on the Thursday, which I coined as ‘Shagmas eve’ due to my eagerness for the next day and everything seemed to perfectly set up for the grand occasion. I was working the next day but I had already set out my blue print for the entire night including train times, what kind of wine I was going to purchase and my opening line for when she greeted me in her sexy see-through underwear at her flat door. This was destined to be the best night I’d had in a long time. But…the next morning I tragically awoke to just a measly handful of change, a pounding hangover and a bad hair day. Expecting to get paid the next day, I squandered all my £50 on marijuana and woke up the next day to an empty bank account and a stiff erection. My work had changed it’s payment plan to monthly and I had totally forgot about this. Devastated, I couldn’t go due to lack of finances. No finances. I had been screwed by myself – which I also did multiple times that day while crying into a pillow in an attempt to numb the pain. After calling her and informing her that I couldn’t come because ‘I had been kept on at work’ (the classic excuse), she never really showed interest in me again. ‘Shagmas’ only comes once a year I’d missed it.

Money is a precious and powerful necessity, spend it wisely or acquire big balls.

How to Get Banned from Your Neighbours House

For a nineteen year old male teenager, being banned from your own local pub is probably the worst thing that can happen. I wish my goldfish had died instead. This is genuinely how I feel. ‘The Tavern’ was a big part of my life. Four nights a week after work I would scramble to the bus stop, hop on a bus, bolt to my house, throw on a shirt and any kind of cheap Christmas gift standard aftershave, and then bomb it to the tavern (all three metres next door).

Major tragedy inbound: Due to my best friend deciding to carry what he called, the ‘dankest stinky stink green’ (weed) he had ever obtained, into the pub, and then roll it inside the tiny bathroom located directly behind the bar, we both faced a permanent ban stating that we could never step through the glorious black pine doors into The Tavern ever again. Just like that, my social life was obliterated into a million small pieces and thrown to the dogs.

The Tavern was a delightful wee pub located right next door to my house – that’s right, my own neighbours have banned me from their house. Everyone in the Tavern knew everyone, it was a very diverse family of learned drinkers. The jukebox was cheap (free Mon-Tues) and the banter was as sweet as the cider. The owners even had a small dog named ‘Stella’ that would pleasantly weave in and out the vintage furniture greeting all the regulars to a belly-rub invitation and a lick on the foot. Honestly, this pub is (was) the best thing since Gangnam Style.

I later found out what type of marijuana my friend was carrying, and it turned out to be the premium ‘tangerine dream’. Research told me that this dry and crispy weed is one of the most pungent type available on the market which likely explains why the bartender scouted the toilets instantly after my friend came out. Admittedly however, after smoking the ‘dank stuff’ at a bench in the woods the same night I was banned, it did bring me an abundance of salvation which brought with it a temporary blanket of comfort (or forgetfulness) over the horrific events of the previous hour that would almost certainly hit me like a torpedo in the morning upon my awakening to a killer hangover.

That last sip of Blackthorn cider at The Tavern will stay with me for eternity. Sure, I could just go to my local Asda and buy a large plastic bottle of the stuff for a cheaper price, but the junkie-like, wholesale essence to the taste will never match the ice-cold taste of a pint of cider in the place that existed as a major component of my life for just over a year. Now the closest I’ll ever get to that beautifully varnished wooden bar is through sticking my head into the fireplace and listening eagerly to the classic jokes and fables of some of the more ‘experienced’ drinkers at The Tavern.

It wasn’t even the alcohol that most attracted me to the The Tavern. On a good night I would only be able to skirt around the region of 3-4 pints before falling into a great pit of drunkeness. To be quite honest, I’m more surprised that I didn’t get barred the night I stepped into the dangerous territory of having six pints and broke the bathroom door off it’s hinges. At least I actually had something to do with that, unlike the current reason for my ban – I never possessed the drugs nor did I try to roll them into a joint in the bathroom. But, if you fly with the crows, you get shot with the crows, fair enough.

My legacy at The Tavern has now deceased and my social drinking life has entered into frantic turbulence.

‘But Frank, there are plenty of other pubs out there?’, they say. ‘Fuck off’, is what I say.

Welcome to My Life

Over the space of the last ten minutes, I’ve been contemplating my own life and where I stand as a human being on this strange planet. Basically, I’ve just judged myself. I’ve come to the conclusion that my life is nothing short of tragic (but in a sort of enjoyable way). I feel as though I could do a lot more, see a lot more and meet a lot more people. I like to think that I’m a very bright teenager that’s capable of doing a lot more than what I’m currently doing (sitting on my arse letting Netflix slowly devour my life). However, here’s the problem. Well, here’s a list of ALL the problems that have seemingly snaked their way into my life since I turned the age of eighteen last year…

In no particular order, here is a list of problems that range from serious (from my perspective) to possibly laughable (in your perspective) – don’t you dare. I can only hope that there are people out there that can relate to these:

1. I gamble too much (£100 gone last night)

2. I only have one and a half friends

3. I can’t seem to hold a job down for any longer than two months

4. I have been smoking marijuana for the last two months on a regular basis, and last night for the first time, I took a tablet of valium.

5. I have no money

6. I can’t see any future vision of myself

7. I’m fairly sure my best friend is a killer

8. I am a love/hate kind of guy, but it usually turns into hate after a sufficient amount of time

9. I have one ear bigger than the other

10. I smoke cigarettes, which bothers me (I still do it though)

11. Last night I got banned from the pub I live next door to because my friend rolled a joint in the bathroom

12. I have no girls in my life right now

13. I am not close to my step-dad, whom I’ve known since I was five years old

I’m sure I’ve missed a few, but those are all the only issues my mind can conjure up at this moment in time. The list will more than likely take pleasure in hitting the triple digits by Christmas at the latest.

Over the months to come, I am going to discuss these problems in more embarrassing detail and on the way, share some of the most mortifying stories that I force my face to wince upon even just thinking about them – there’s a considerable amount of roasters in there somewhere.

Before I go and smoke the cigarette doubt that I may or may not find near the compost bin at the back of my garden, I would just like to point out that I am in no way a depressed or even suicidal person. I love life and the sheer excitement that anything can happen at any time. I am a very positive and motivated (Well, I’m motivated to become motivated) individual. The reason behind the creation of this blog is to investigate whether or not there are other people out there that can relate to a lifestyle that is similar to my own.