Back at my desk as if Christmas never happened. We didn't have snow here, just cold and slushy weather, but it was nice.
I'll no doubt jot down some details and half truths about my Xmas festivities at some point but for now I have a cunning plan. It involves me sitting here and writing whatever comes into my head, seeing what tangents turn up and where they take me. You can come too, it might work or it might not work.
I've got three days at work during which all will be quiet and I can do some organising and planning for 2007. The wife gave me a new briefcase for Xmas, one of these highly trendy brown leather "satchel" types. So I finally got rid of the old black one which I've had since 1989. This meant some clearing out had to be done and I have been standing at the office shredder for some minutes feeding a steady stream of old bank statements and unwanted junk mail into it.
I have noticed one small negative about this new bit of craftmanship, it's actually a negative to do with the "satchel" case rather than just this one specifically. I can't leave it open and just peruse the contents casually, browsing is a bit harder to do. No big deal and it means that I'll keep it tidier than I did the old one, I had a tendency to chuck stuff into it and just leave it there.
Boxing day was spent at my parents' house. Copious volumes of rice and curry were consumed by all, a welcome spicy treat after the traditional Roast turkey on Christmas Day and the traditional Polish Christmas meal on the Eve. I like them both but my Dad's mutton curry is legendary.
Strangely my Carrom form has suffered since I had my eyes lasered. It's eight months now since the op and, during that time, I have been whipped at Carrom by both my brothers. This is unusual. One brother, the academic one, who wasn't with us yesterday, will normally give me a good game and the results can go either way. The other brother gets his sorry arse whipped by me every time. Some weeks ago I got my sorry arse whipped by that bro. It was then that I knew for sure that there was something badly wrong. I checked the small print from the eye people and couldn't see anything that mentions Carrom playing. I thought there may have been some kind of guarantee but there was nothing. I really didn't know where to go with this one other than to try to play my way through the nightmare.
But yesterday we had a doubles match. There was Bro 1, my Dad, the usual Sri Lankan stray a bloody nice chap called R and me. I definitely saw signs of my old form returning. As with most games confidence is the key to playing good Carrom. When mine is low I think too much and hesitate before shots, I place the disk on the lines and stare at it for just a bit too long. Then I play the shot and fuck up all over the place. When I'm on top of the game, well you know how it is don't you? The Queen is on the centre spot and you can slice it into the pocket every time, you don't have to think about it. You can pot those shots when the seed is jammed right up against the edge. All is sweet and you have no hesitation and championship confidence.
Yesterday I felt that just a bit of the old magic was returning. I don't want to get too excited, I know that I'll have to work hard to regain my ranking in my family, but I'll put the effort in and do it for my fans.
Other miscellany; A conversation with my good, but sometimes a couple of cans short of a two pack, mate went like this:
Him: "I heard Sam Brown died this morning"
Me: "No, you mean James Brown"
Him: "Ah yes, sorry mate, what was I thinking of?" (he is from New Zealand, so do the accent in your head) "Sam Brown's the one who did "Under the Boardwalk" isn't he".
Me: (feeling vastly superior because of my clearly advanced knowledge of modern music)
" No mate, Sam Brown's that white girl, Joe Brown's daughter, (who I've fancied for years (Sam, not Joe)), she had a number one with "Stop" a few years ago. Sam Cooke's the one who did "under the boardwalk".
Him: Ah yes, I've got it now.
I'm off to tidy my desk now.
Oh yes, did I tell you that I booked a ticket to nip over to the Motherland for a week? I'll be there in Feb, I can't wait.