Diary

Good Morning

29 September 2019 | Diary

Oh my God, what a night. I woke at 4:30 from a terrifying dream. It was just like in the films. I sat bolt upright, panting and confused, not entirely certain of where I was. As I tried to shrug it off and go back to sleep, I found myself sliding into the clutches of […]

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Coin Slot

26 September 2019 | Diary

A cut passage (a murdered darling) from my manuscript: I put my palm on the trepanned head of a plastic guide dog to steady myself. As I regarded its coin slot, it seemed to sing that I should pop my door key inside it. It had to go because it required too much explanation. Not […]

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Parasitic Wasps

25 September 2019 | Diary

Friend Kristin has read my moth diary and she’s keen to tell me about a “natural” solution involving parasitic wasps. Apparently you release the wasps at home and then seek out any unhatched moth eggs, feasting on them as the world’s grossest caviar. Unleashing some wasps is immensely appealing, but I can’t help wonder if […]

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You Come Home From Work

24 September 2019 | Diary

You come home from work and you turn the television on. Something’s wrong. Inspector Morse is on every single channel. You thump the top of the set in a caveman bid to escape John Thaw’s stern face but your hand passes through the set with a sickening tear. The television set is made of paper! […]

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You’re On Holiday

23 September 2019 | Diary

You’re on holiday in California, admiring the view at Big Sur, when you approach a local to ask for directions. The man panics. “It’s no good!” he shrieks, looking around helplessly, “I can’t do it!” and then he leaps into the canyon. Only the canyon’s not a canyon. The Californian passes through it with a […]

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After the Storm

22 September 2019 | Diary

It’s been an atypically social week, something friendly lined for every single night and three of the days. So many pint glasses and ticket stubs has meant putting my Street Fighter health bar into the red and storming the treasury in a way not strictly compatible with the lifestyle of a twenty-first-century person of letters. […]

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Vasculum

21 September 2019 | Diary

To the Botanical Gardens to volunteer as a guide for Doors Open Day. I show thirty lusty octogenarians (and my pal Graeme) around the botanical library, a place I know well having catalogued the entire collection as a side-project. Hypocrite idler, I know. The visitors are fresh from a tour of the fern house, so […]

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Climate Change Does Not Spark Joy

20 September 2019 | Diary

To the Glasgow contingent of the International Climate Strike where I march with thousands of truant schoolchildren, shouting “Fuck You, Boris Johnson!” Look, they started it. Among their midget ranks I loom like a benevolent periscope, admiring the sights from high above their heads and providing a convenient landmark for other marchers to orientate themselves. […]

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This One’s Fine

19 September 2019 | Diary

I am afraid of spiders but delighted by ants. I always want to know more about ants–about their culture, the ways they communicate, what sort of music they’re into–but I don’t want to know anything about spiders. Even a picture of a spider lifts my intestines up into my chest as if I am in […]

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Stevedor

18 September 2019 | Diary

Samara asks what a tiny home ghost story would be like. “Smol,” I say. Once l’esprit de l’escalier has kicked in, I realise that, since the story would be set in a converted shipping container, it would have to be about the ghost of a stevedore stranded deep inland with a couple of earnest hipsters. […]

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