A word I have needed all my life

The Guardian today has a good lambasting of Robbie Williams and cheap gay stereotyping. The article is an amusing enough rant, but mainly I appreciate it for introducing me to the word floordrobe.

Floordrobe! You remember that moment when you first had a gin and tonic, and it was both delicious and thrilling, and yet felt so natural that you could hardly believe you had lived fourteen or fifteen years without experiencing one yet? Well that’s me, now, with the word floordrobe. I have one, I have always had one. Being something of a vagrant, I have often had multiple floordrobes in a range of residences around the world. If you put me up even for just one night, I will—despite in all other circumstances being useless at DIY—erect a quick, makeshift floordrobe in minutes, and if you’re very lucky I’ll leave it to you to enjoy once I’ve gone. In fact, I don’t just have a floordrobe: I have a state-of-the-art, walk-in floordrobe replete with absolutely no fixtures or fittings of any kind. I like to pretend that there is some kind of organizational principle behind it, but the reality is that it is that quantum physicists should come and hang in my room* rather than spending all that effort faffing around with spin and particles and whatnot, because it is perfect proof of Bell’s theorem: there is no logically possible organizational system which could fully specify its distribution. There may be a small, en-suite bedchamber located somewhere in its vicinity, but generally I find it easier to slump down on the least obviously festering pile and let my freakish self-devouring brain do what it is best at.

Floordrobe. Thankyou, Patrick Strudwick, for giving me a word I have always lacked and yet never even known I needed. And, in the spirit of the original article, how nice that I heard it from a gay man. Such witty chaps, you know.

* Not a phrase heard that often, one suspects.

Today’s bad excuse for skipping the gym…

… comes to you courtesy of a recent house move and consequent sartorial disorganisation.

A piece of advice: should you not have a pair of clean shorts of your own to hand when you are rushing out of the house in the morning, do not presume that you can simply grab a pair of your twin brother’s shorts. Keep in mind that (a) he is generally thinner than you, and (b) he was for a while very much thinner than you.

I got them about half way up my chubby, shapeless thighs before they ground to a shuddering halt, leaving me waddling around the changing rooms like Dick van Dyke doing his penguin dance in Mary Poppins, but minus the animated entourage, sense of rhythm, or dodgy accent. I feared they’d be stuck there, to be honest, and was left pondering how to get a bus home with legs even more abbreviated than usual.

Fortunately I managed to crowbar them off, and left the gym circa five minutes after going in, but rather redder in the face than I usually leave it.

Note: my legs are actually neither shapeless nor chubby; I have eviscerated the truth for the sake of humour. They are, however, ludicrously truncated. To be honest, were they any shorter I very much doubt my feet would reach the ground.

Whilst we’re on the topic of narcolepsy…

I have the most misnamed illness in history of medicine. Falling asleep a lot is the least of my problems. To be honest I think you’re all damn weird being able to get by in a 24-hour period with just one doze. What the hell do you do in a boring lecture (regrettably in most of the interesting ones too), or on the train (if, of course, you can get a seat)? How do you know that you put in a decent gym session if you don’t fall asleep the minute your arse hits a chair afterwards? (Okay, so the times I fall asleep actually walking away from the gym aren’t so good.)

But it’s the sleep paralysis, the cataplexy, the bizarre semiconscious states I often find myself in when I’m sure sooner or later I will blurt out my most heinous, shameful secrets (I once said no to a gin and tonic, but there may be some even worse than that), and the gosh darned inability to sleep more than an hour at a time at nights that really infuriate me. Seriously, it’s 1.30 in the morning on a school night, I’ve already slept twice, and just spent the last 20 minutes thinking about perception, consciousness, and false positives. Not even from any kind of existential despair (I dealt with all that many years ago, through the regular and enthusiastic application of the aforementioned G&T), but because it’s interesting and my brain has decided to enter fully awake, morning mode. In fact, I was going to be writing a post on that topic, but then I realised would in all likelihood be up all night. You have no idea how many half-finished drafts I already have saved on my various half-arsed philosophical ruminations.

This is in danger of looking like a whinge. It’s not. There will be no whinges on this blog: they are forbidden along with credulousness, discrimination, flaccid thinking, and photographs of dogs (those slobbering bundles of hair, saliva, and affirmation-begging neediness). It’s a rant against a poorly-named disease, and a warning to the next person who upon hearing that I have it says, “Oh is that the one where you fall asleep all the time?” I’m not sure how I will punish you (it will almost certainly involve sarcasm and a few choice words such as would make your silvery-haired old mam’s ears melt off), and if I spend time working it out then I really will be up all night. Just consider yourself warned.