Sunday, 28 April 2013

101 Tips On How To Be A Bouncer.

Today I am handing over the blog to my comrade Oscar Sparrow. These days he describes himself as an ex poet and truck driver. He appears here in his role as an audio narrator for Gallo-Romano Media.

You don't end up like this by winning fights. I should have read the book!

In my youth (well, perhaps my thirties and forties), I did the poetry reading round. Anyone who has ever done this, will know just how tough it can be. Surely, sitting in a quiet recording studio should be far easier. No drunks, no chanting football fans or passing poet haters. Just me....and that is the problem. Once you've read a poem to a crowd (or four acrid smelling people who thought it was ferret club night), the thing is done. You can't go back to tweak the bleak or lengthen the longing in the tone. It's done my dear and where's my beer? (See - once a poet always a poet).

A narrator's work is never done. The errors will haunt you for ever. For all that it is a wonderful job. A couple of weeks ago I completed a rather unusual project. 101 Tips On How To Be A Bouncer is a unique book. The tag line is "Techniques To Handle Situations Without Violence". The author, Darren Lee, is an experienced "Crowd Controller" who has also spent many years as a lawyer. The book does exactly what it says on the tin. The only thing is that the tin contains far more than you would think. In fact it is a book about psychology at the cutting edge of real dangerous life. From my own experience of many years as a London street cop, I can tell it was written by a guy who absolutely knows the score. It's premise is how to be a bouncer and avoid conflict or violence. The essential thing is the management of potentially aggressive ego. At the same time, the "crowd controller" must be in charge and act with INTENTION. This is a balancing act, in front of a dangerous audience who massively outnumber the "controller".  Never underestimate the courage needed to turn up for work,  knowing that any failure of your personal skills or physical confidence could leave you seriously injured. 

I finished this book with a great admiration for all those guys who do this job. Few folk could not learn something from it. Anyone in security, event organizing, policing roles or the entertainment industry could gain insight from this book. As I read it, I realised that as a parent, this was a book I wish I could have put in the way of my clubbing kids. Youngsters don't want to be mothered by old hens - after all - what do they know? A book by a "bouncer" has street cred and knowledge. It would help anyone to recognise situations and be able to assess risk. If you are with a group which is beginning to lose the plot - the "crowd controllers" will know the signs and be aware. Knowledge is power and I certainly would have  put it in my kids' sober hands as a quiet piece of homework. If the only thing they learned was that there are guys out there who've got their number and have seen it all before - that's a major plus believe me. In the ocean of beers, shots and fun, a few will drown. Knowing the score could keep you afloat.

It was an unusual book to narrate. I found my tone in my London roots as a police patrol car driver. Darren is quite right. The "old school" bouncer is as dead as the old rough justice cop. It's still a tough world out there and always will be. Cheers boys and girls - and have a good night eh!


Thanks Oscar.  I've read this book myself. I was dismayed to learn that the last doorman asking for my I.D. was probably just doing a canned flattery routine. Oooh - he was sexy and I still love him for it anyway!

Here is a clip of Oscar explaining how to handle an old Doris like me... 

Emma Thinx: Love on the bounce requires a man with balls.

Friday, 26 April 2013

Double Trouble - You Can Say That Again

Despised old bird hides head in shame
 What sorrow and trouble has befallen me! I've been despised, reviled and cast into godless outer darkness. Apparently, my last post about my disappointing experience in trying to provide a home for a couple of Cyanistes Caeruleus for the purposes of a DNA exchange, has been interpreted as vile sexual innuendo. 

The problem is that you can take the girl out of the gutter - but you can't take the gutter out of the girl. And no one ever will!  Oooh - I'm a shameless depraved slut. 
My large open chest

Now, all this is  unfortunate because I was really warming to the overall subject of ornithology. I was going to tell you about my neighbour in France who has an enormous red male chicken that wakes up half the town in the morning. The fowl is quite famous and has been displayed at numerous country festivals. I asked the owner in for a cognac recently to chat about the morning behaviour. He turned out to be a cultured man from the furniture trade. At once his eyes fell upon my large English chest that I had accidentally left open. I explained that it was a family inheritance and that my mother had had an even larger one.  Fortunately we did not get on to discussing other English matters such as Dickens or Shakespeare.  So many names and twists of language are open to a range of interpretation in these high brow works. I would offer a couple of examples but I've had enough slamming and outer darkness for one week thank-you. 

Emma thinks: How can you repent if you haven't pented? 

Saturday, 20 April 2013

Mutton Dressed As Ram

Oh yes - I've been following the Boston police radio scanners and the Twitter feeds. I can know everything - except why and how all the awfulness of life can ever be converted to love, pleasure and and happiness. Of this I know nothing and thus I am at one in ignorance with the great statesmen, the priests and the tormented dispensers of sorrow alike.
Chance me a crack, blow me a wind and I'll seed you a life

All the same, today the sun came out. Indeed Oh to be in England now that April's there  - to quote Robert Browning. I often wonder if cruelty truly is the unique realm of mankind. Nature is indifferent to suffering, but takes no satisfaction from it either. If (as I do suspect) we may well be the only intelligent life in the universe - how unique is our cruelty to one another. 
Will you just shut up and admire my bloody innocence!

These thoughts fell upon me as I walked in fields near the house in the UK. As I photographed a lamb for a nice schmaltzy blog-pic, the mother arrived to stare me down. To be frank, she was rather terrifying. She had that awful righteous "j'accuse" expression worn by French teachers returning my French homework, now more red ink than blue.(I used to quip to Madame Guillotine that at least by dipping my essay in red she had made a revolutionary tricolor of my efforts. I don't think she liked me).  

Mutton dressed as Ram. 
I really MUST learn some French grammar by the way. Although I've gabbled away for years and years among French folk, I don't have an inkling of la grammaire. (Between you and me, for many years when the French ticked me off for the faults of ma grammaire, I always rose to her defence by proclaiming that my grandmother  was at least as good as theirs.) A few days ago in England I found myself in a femaelstrom of adolescent student bile over the use of the double reflexive subjunctive tense in secondary clauses following an indirect dative objet. I may have tripped over my subordinate sub clause of comprehension in explaining this matter clearly. Pardonnez-moi mes amis! (Oooh - I do miss home!)

Emma thinx: Scanners shaketh man.

Friday, 12 April 2013

Coming Out Of My Shell

Someone once mocked a political opponent by saying that they "could not run a whelk stall". I don't think I could either - because I'd eat them all. Whelks are far too good to serve or sell to other people. I'm not too sure how well known they are in the USA but I think Italians may call them Scungilli. If you fancy some nice juicy yet chewy snail type food here is a link to a NY Times article

Here in France they are called "bulot". As I write this little blog a background fantasy of sea food is playing in the middle of my mind.  The attached You Tube clip is just to show you how to be sure to add enough salt to oxidise your cardiac pacemaker.

The only reason Fruits de Mer and bulots are going round in my head is that I have just seen some at la poissonnerie and denied myself even a single lick. Today is a fasting day  on the 5:2 diet so it's all about sacrifice. I still don't think I could run a whelk stall though.

Allowing myself to look at whelks was a special treat to celebrate the completion of the final story for my forthcoming collection of shorts and novelettes which will go out under the banner Love In A Hopeless Place. They are all stories of love among poorer people in urban settings. The final story has probably been the most difficult thing I have ever tried to do. I know it will shock and appal many people. In the end I thought I had to write it because it is more or less a re-creation of true events without too much intervention by me. I'm never afraid of putting sex in my stories and in cases where this is what motivates characters, you just cannot avoid it. I am a bit nervous of the contents. There are advisers around me of the Disney tendency who have turned a ghostly pale on first reading. Might be a good sign eh?  Good job I'm an orphan. The title is indeed a lift of the Rihanna song because in the story, a couple of the characters sing it. 

Emma thinx: Freedom Air - calorie free seafood to inhale. 

Tuesday, 9 April 2013

"Wow - I've lost a stone!" Emma ejaculated.

Merely 4,250 calories = 8 days food
I originally started blogging when "Knockout" was published. Seemingly it was the thing that all aspiring scribettes needed to do. For the first six months I performed every day. Since then I have progressively reduced the output with surprising results. Yesterday for instance, some 200 hundred applauding fans flocked to worship at the shrine of my wondrous words. Or - perhaps not! 

My suspicion is that most of the views are conducted by some kind of Spam-a-vision. They leave anonymous comments about my genius and the need for the world to ejaculate more fully by using the tablets only available from their website. I'm with them on the assessment of my genius of course - but the other matter is rather beyond me.  Does any one else have blog issues with genius and ejaculation?

I am in France and sticking to my 5:2 diet. Yes, five different types of cheese and two glasses of wine to lubricate the follicles. Luckily I never omit an accompanying  substantial meal laced with blood purifying vampire slaying garlic to complete the evening. Oooh - you should have seen me at dinner with friends last week denying myself a third serving of full fat ham in liquid butter served with potatoes in melted cheese. I was so proud! Luckily there was some left for me to bring home.
Saint Saviinien  is so beautiful - even on a diet day there is loveliness

Of course, those are the five eat as you wish days. I have been ruthless on the two days of fasting. In France I have learned one thing. Denial is purely relative to temptation. We could call this the  DT index. Instead of all the statistics about financial inflation, happiness and climate we just need to know the DT ratio. Some places should warn that only experienced self deniers should enter. All French bakeries and cheese vendors would have to show their DT index on their shuttered shop windows. Oh why oh why is the best stuff so bad for you?
As big and as wide as a fasting novelists stomach

The good news....on the scales this morning I found that the world of Romantic fiction is now a whole stone (6.35 kgs) lighter. Accordingly I'm downsizing all future heroines by one size.
This diet is liveable and it works guys - it really does.

Emma thinx: Eat, shrink and be merry.