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May 01, 2010

Sex etc.


There are only a few things that are certain in the modern world. Kerry Katona will get fat again, cry about being a coke addict, snort the ashes of one hundred thou sand crushed Atomic Kitten CDs and die, leaving nothing in her wake but a five page epitaph in the Daily Star.

We will always care more about Kerry Katona eating sushi than we will about Cleggmania, Sam Cam and that rabid Scottish bull dog, no matter how hard Rupert Murdoch tries. McDonalds will make you fat. Burger King will make you fat. Nick Clegg will make you fat. The Andrex Puppies will make you fat. Gok Wan will tell you that you’re fat but you’re fabulous, or something, and make you expose your stretch marks in front of your grandma and The Nation. Everything onTVis for and by The Nation, an anonymous group of twats who spend their Sunday afternoons masturbating to Racing on Channel 4 and deciding that Joe McElderry is now the voice of The Nation be cause he’s cute. Or something.

More than this, we all know that sex sells, apparently. Whenever anything vaguely sexual comes on TV, there will al ways be some pil lock near by who wants to justify the sudden awkwardness in the room with an oh-so witty anecdote about the economy of sex on TV. Say ‘sex sells’ enough times and it be comes about as monotonous a drone as the white noise that will forever leech onto my null and void collec tion of analogue TVs. Except the white noise isn’t quite as self-​righteous as the lager wielding, Times-​reading sofa commentator.

I’m not exactly the most clued-​up person on the economics of tele vision, and I am sure that TVprograms with lots and lots of fucking in them make lots and lots of advertising revenue for lots and lots of television executives. And good for them, truly! But does every single TVpro gram need to be reduced to a base, sexual level?

I’m not saying that Newsnighthas become a late night haven for Paxman fetishists waiting for the closing five minutes in which he strips down to his off-​white Y Fronts and performs a disturbingly erotic dance, but there is definitely a misplaced emphasis on sexual attraction and seduction across the entire sorry spectrum of TVshows.

There are, of course, overtly sexual TVshows. There have been for a long time. Sex and the Cityploughs on with its second movie com ing soon, and I’m sure that scenes of menopausal women hav ing their way with bare ly post-​pubescent boy toys will be titillating enough, but in com par i son to the bawdy romps of the TVshow, the new Sex and The Citywill always pale in comparison. Sex and The Cityis reflective of how stan dards of sex on TVhave gradually dis integrated from people fucking to make a point to peo ple fuck ing be cause there needs to be a sex scene in every single post-​water shed program. The once perky labia of your TVset is drooping lower than a fat man sleeping in a loosely strung hammock.

Every taboo has already been broken. Queer as Folkintroduced rimming to middle England at the start of the millennium. Joan Collins’ character in Footballers’ Wiveshad sex with her adopted Brazilian football megastar son. Channel 5 ran a documentary about a man who has sex with his car. Rebecca Loos masturbated a pig on The Farm. Kinga made sweet sweet love with a wine bottle on Big Brother. Every single combination of midgets, obese prosti tutes, eighty-​year-​old male strippers and inanimate objects have all cheated on each other on some godforsaken daytime chat show.

Sex can be innovative and in spir ing in the right context. The rim ming worked on Queer as Folknot be cause it was shocking but be cause it made gay sex beautiful. Footballers’ Wivesworked be cause it was campy and kitsch and the weird sex scenes were so extreme that they be came cartoonish. Rebecca Loos’ indulgence in bestiality was just shocking, crude and in appropriate.

And then there’s TV’s obsession with sexualising the seemingly in nocuous. Children’s TVpre sen ters seem to know the score, and it’s almost a rite of passage for every female ex-Blue Peterpresenter to appear in the glossy pages of FHM.

Perhaps Bob the Builderwill turn into Bob the Rent Boysoon enough to in crease ratings. Dora the Explorerhas already been given a more revealing outfit. Heck, in a desperate move, the final series ofBig Brothercould bring back Moira Stewart to per form lap dances.

Sex on TVis ridiculous and worthless. Expect to see David Cameron awkwardly writhing in dirty underwear in a desperate attempt at quelling Clegg-​mania in Thursday‘s debate.



Drops of water chase down the window of the train. There’s a child, young boy, black hair, teeth, opposite me. He has one hand on the table and the other in his lap. His mother holds a rucksack, his rucksack, decorated with a smiling cartoon that I don’t recognise.

I follow the rain as it falters, mid window. It shivers as the train moves, but it stays stuck. 

The child stares at nothing. His mother is restless. Her eyes are shadows. One hand gets a firmer grip on the rucksack. The other is everywhere. In her hair in one moment. In her handbag, the next, scrabbling for a tissue or a list or whatever mothers need. 

There is a conversation about politics on the table next to me between a pin-stripe and a black-suit businessman. ‘I mean, it’s just ridiculous.’ and ‘I totally agree, they’re all wankers.’ etc. 

I reach across and ask them for the time.

‘It’s 6pm.’

The woman opposite me checks her watch.

‘More like five past’

and pin-stripe does a half nod smile and ‘er, so yeah. As I was saying’

The child looks at me, straight into my chest. I smile at him. He stares into my chest, and I carry on smiling. He seems to be unaware of all the hedges, trees, sheep, buildings, metal, wood, metal jetting past his head. Smiling and staring, I see everything.

A lonely tree in an empty, green field. Its branches crawl across the dusking sky. Men where there are no men. Tricks of the light. Jumps and hands firmly in pockets. A man standing, bald. In the big windows. Still. and bald. And blue. The room was blue. A house reflection in the shadow. A whole pool of shadow. A leap. I almost-

The child looks at me, straight into my eyes. The mother’s a shadow, blind to the busy seats, the inane chatter and idle connections. As if I shouldn’t look at anything else. 

He is browless. His eyes a light brown. I wanted to see a miracle. I just see colour, and a pit of black.


I turn my head towards the window. The rain has all gone. I missed the race. Now there’s just reflections. Reflections and trees and a purple moon, boy in the light with black hair, head shake faster and faster and fall, onto the table, mother with lipstick, through my eyelids a shatter, train slows and doors poft. 

Train shudder. Just the sound of the train.

Eyes open, and I’m alone. I walk to the toilet, wash my hands. And I wait for the train to stop. 

Castles and stuff


He had bushy eyebrows. There was an ingrown hair above his lip. He had more hair on his inner thigh than on his shin. His shin was shiny, and smooth, if you touched it right.  


There are birds on top of the pylon. Muted by eighties fuck-rock in the bus. Most of everyone is background chatter, playing on phones, matching heads for love, giggling and there might be some commotion, soon. I see the birds on top of the pylon, and then they’re gone.

white line on the road, again, again, again, again.

We could be here forever. The head on my shoulder stops and starts to snore. I like the rhythm, I like the heat. I like the way our hair touches. Perhaps we will get stuck, and we could be here forever. 

The English Teachers talk about tax and everyone does anything behind them. Once someone got a blowjob in a school-trip bus. Someone told me. A teacher found them and told them to stop, and nothing came of it. 


He had a straggle of hair under both of his knees. There was one long hair above his left nipple. He never touched his armpit hair. His chin was clean, and he never scratched me. 


We’re at the ruins of a castle or a monastry or somewhere people lived and prayed. We are with the rocks. A man in a cossack leads us around, speaking words. 

There aren’t any clouds in the sky. There’s a ditch covered in brambles behind all of the rocks. I think about running and jumping into the ditch, about having dirty palms, about bleeding and tearing into my polka-dot dress, about drinking the ditch water and swallowing and swallowing until

The monk stops and asks if anyone knows anything about rituals. My bus buddy, awake, raises her hand. 

‘Rituals are things that people do over and over again’ 

and I force my fingers into my palm. I look at the sky. I feel the lace under my left shoe. There is hair over my eyes. I can see all the blue and there’s two planes above me. One flies over the other’s jet-stream. It looks like it’s going back in time. 

My tights are sore around my thighs. I try to breathe but my tights are sore

hands clutching the stretch, ripping a hole. a huge hole. and another. they might meet. and cross each other. what then?


He was bald, but hair matted to his chest. My hair lay cold on the pillow. His hair matted to his chest. 


It’s all whispers and a Teacher in my face. Girls with pigtails laugh and the boys are on the ground, away from all of the commotion.

‘Speak to me,’ the teacher. ‘What’s wrong?’

the brambles look thick. I curl my finger. I moan. Through the hole in my tights, I moan. I throw my head back, I open my mouth. I let the sky into my mouth, and I moan. Thinking about his matted hair, his hairy thigh, his stretch stomach, 

‘Christ. Everyone’ but they’re being hurried by the monk, to some more rocks, 

‘Stop it. 

You have to stop it’

his grey eyes, his frown and the way he hummed along to Bach and taught me how to play Liszt on the piano

‘Christ almighty. Stop it.’

and the way he made me love, I didn’t want love, but he gave it anyway, and the way his teeth grinded when he stopped

a Teacher grabs my waist and I am on the ground. I am under a jacket, and on the ground. 

laughing and laughing and laughing

at how the sky is so full and 


He was getting the post. I ran. And I ran. 




Moon haze stains the window. My eyes are too heavy for the cotton sheets. They are nothing, here. They are no-one’s and they are nothing. 

Heels arch. Toes curl. Lips like a fist and take it. Take it.

And again, back pressed to the grey duvet. Silence and zips. And breathing through my nose. Silence and turning the light back on. Silence and then door lock. 

I’m wearing a nightgown. Ribbon around my waist. I don’t need the money when I’ve got ribbon. Ribbon for the world. And my hair can be ribboned and I can find a tree and I can climb the tree and I can see a field from the branch-

Feet flat on the duvet. Grease hair, white shoulder. Something happens.

I don’t know if that’s the moon or just pollution. I hear there’s too much pollution.

My fingers are fingers, and I touch the glass lightbulb. The searing lightbulb. I touch it with my fingernail and scour nothing. Feet flat on the duvet. Ribbon around my waist. Lips like a claw and I touch it. Touch it. 

I door click, I light off, I breathe through my nose. Zips and silence. And I breathe through my nose. And again, back pressed to the grey.

And I want to peel the moon haze and press it to my face. All around my face, so I see nothing but the mist and the impression of a star in the glass of my eye. And I have eyes, and I can swallow, choke, I can choke the dark and. And something happens.

A lightning flash. Or a choke, and die.

Silence and zips. And door click. And grey, again. My eyelids are too thin for the yellow ceiling. They are no-one’s and they are nothing.

Duvet feet. Upright and I caress the glass of the lightbulb. There is a man, down on the street. I know I can see a man. My fingers creep to the metal at the top of the cold glass. And my claw is like a fist. And my fist is like a fist. And my feet are fists. The ceiling is a fist and it punches, and I throw the lightbulb smash, and I dance, fuck it, fuck it, I dance with my fists and I hope for the moon and there is brown, everywhere. 

Soaking the blood. 

Door click. Silence and zips. It will be morning, soon.

Hello again


Back after what seems like forever and ever. Lots of stuff to post. I actually have a proper BlogBlog now: http://theburningboy.blogspot.com/

I do proper blog blog stuff there. ER. Yeah. Here. 

March 12, 2010

The Undercover Princesses

The Undercover Princesses
4 out of 5 stars


The dating world can be a scary place. Bars and clubs are full of people who either want to  fight you or have sex with you. Everyone is incoherent, nobody can dance and the likelihood that a spilt drink will wreck your carefully selected outfit is incredibly high. That person you pull in Smack does not a partner make. Thankfully, I don’t have to suffer the pitfalls of danger-dating any more, but plenty of people march on like lemmings into its unforgiving abyss. 

Joining the plight of Britain’s singles are the Undercover Princesses, coming all the way from Germany, India and Uganda to find themselves the perfect English gent. In Essex. Sexy, classy Essex. I’m not even being sarcastic: at one point in the program Princess Sheillah from Uganda points to a picture of Jodie Marsh and declares that ‘she is sexy!’. Which is kind of a problem when these women are supposed to be princesses. Princesses should be worrying about their comportment and engagement with their subjects in a demure and dignified fashion, not about imitating Jodie Marsh’s style.

Then again, truly demure and dignified princesses would never appear on BBC3 full stop, let alone on a program which follows them on a path of almost certain rejection and humiliation. Something gives me the impression that these women are looking for something other than love. Princess Xenia is the German equivalent of Paris Hilton. Rather, Xenia thinks that she is the German equivalent of Paris Hilton. In her introductory video, they were demonstrating her fame by showing her being photographed by various members of the German public, each one looking more bemused than the last. I get the feeling that perhaps she isn’t as famous as she wants to be and doesn’t want to date an Essex lad, rather to make herself into an uber-star. 

Princess Aaliyah of Balasinor, India has the most rose-tinted view of her trip to beautiful Essex. I can only imagine the meetings that must have taken place between the producers and the Princesses. They probably pulled out some Victorian propagandist paintings of the quaint and sophisticated English countryside, coupled with a showing of Pride and Prejudice and a booklet of typical British bachelors comprising mainly of pictures of Hugh Grant, Robert Pattinson and Prince Harry. Whereas Xenia went into the program with her eyes wide open, Aaliyah is far more shy and is seen to break down on the streets of Essex towards the end of the episode. Knowing how reserved she is, surely the producers were gearing her up for an inevitable and embarrassing downfall?

I suppose that’s a bit of a ‘shame on them’ moment, but I genuinely enjoy seeing people breaking down on TV. It may be a little bit perverse, but some of the best TV moments ever come from seeing people in the flux of a mental breakdown. The intention behind the Undercover Princesses isn’t all that machiavellian, but it is an example of how all realityish television is just exploitative TV. The Undercover Princesses is an aftershock of the successful disintegration of Vanessa Feltz on Celebrity Big Brother, Les Dennis on Celebrity Big Brother, Leo Sayer on Celebrity Big Brother, Shabaz on Big Brother...well, actually, almost every single Big Brother contestant ever. Not that there is anything wrong with exploitative TV. It’s entertaining! The dating world might be a scary place, but sat at home watching The Undercover Princesses, we don’t have to experience it. All we have to do is watch three privileged women set themselves up for disaster. Brilliant. 

March 11, 2010

Graham (as much as he wanted)


There was a birth and a death. And a million more. And none were important. And a million more. Pearl lips. Lots. And white legs peal. Blue fingers and hands and arms. Pink cheeks. Everybody looks for trust eyes. Everybody red flushes.

Graham, trapped in lace. Was a birth. White lace, white birth. Christened in gold and drowning in leather. Graham, in the sex club, drowning in leather. And coated in lace with a smile on his face, Graham, deaf Graham, is drowning in leather. Tight smile, yellow teeth, specked tongue.

And Graham writes, “Je te veux. Je te veux. Si tu ne m’aimes pas, je ne peux rien faire. Tu est tout que je veux, l’amour est ma mortuaire. Je te veux. Je te veux. Tu est tout que je dois. J’ai envie de tomber amoureux si tu te fanera”. 

To pink no-one. And yellow teeth. And lace on the neckline. He wants you, he wants you. Love is his funeral. He wants you, he wants you.  He will want to fall in love if you fade. So fade. Everything is too too close. And in. And in.

Drowning in leather. A cardboard plate on the viscid floor. Panic eyes. Graham always with panic eyes. Away from all love. Lace wrists. Lace neck. Material for men. Black rip. Pink shreds.

Graham never thought about his parents. They polished his glass certificates. They dusted his dusty shelves. They gave his books to charity, and they waited for a call.

And lightning sits on the cardboard. It calms. White legs peal onto Graham’s back. Viscous men with seething bodies peal onto Graham’s back. Eating lightning. Tasting lightning. And thinking about falling in love. 

Graham will be a thousand paper statues. When he dies, he will be made into a thousand blank paper statues. And he will be folded onto a plinth in the middle of a green path for a thousand days. He will eat lightning and taste floods, and be white reborn. 

"Through the hosiery to the armory. To the nothing. How do you feel when you can't feel nothing?"

February 27, 2010

Get Inspired

I probably won't post a lot of creative stuff for a while. I'm busy getting inspired for Big work. Here are some inspirational things that will keep me ticking over.

M Finnissy's English Country Tunes:

Jessica Fletcher:

jessica fletcher

Kryzysztof Penderecki's Threnody for the Victims of Hiroshima:



Webern's Piano Variations:



You get the idea. Cool stuff. 

Alice in Wonderland, 1903.

In anticipation of the Tim Burton adaptation, here is what must have been the first Alice film.

M– Eine Stadt Sucht Einen Moerder

Classic German Serial Killer film. Amazing. 

Carnival of Souls

Because Classic Movies are good. This film is officially in the public domain, so its being here is, in fact, perfectly legal. Free movies. Free, good movies. This can only be a good thing. 

February 26, 2010



Adverts never used to make me scream, but now I’m horrified whenever anyone on TV says ‘Hut’, whenever I hear the build up to the piercingly shrill shriek-fest that is a Boots advert and, more to the point, whenever those demonic Evian babies skate across my screen. Those babies are the hellish love-children of the Cloverfield monster and whatever kept freaking that couple out in Paranormal Activity.  Note to Evian advert people: seeing babies rollerskating and dancing is not cute, it is unnatural. The way you contort their bodies is repulsive and your disregard for the physical health of your CGI-Monsters and for the mental health of the unsuspecting viewer is almost as odious as the spectacle itself.

I fear that this advert is merely indicative of a trend that refuses to stop growing. There is an inexorable plague of children on TV. There are a couple more eye-stabbing Kid-centric adverts floating around at the moment, both supported by the government. The first is a swarm of children singing ‘I’ll Do Anything’ in a bid to stop their parents smoking, and the second a load of children talking about how alcohol is going to mess their lives up when they get older. Fact time. The smoking kids don’t care about stopping their parents from smoking. They just want to be on TV. Children love attention. They love attention more than chocolate, Spongebob Squarepants and certainly more than the state of their parents’ lungs. Children are selfish. The youngest members of the AA are probably looking forward to being able to get ‘mash-up’. One boy appears to promise himself a future where he will be offered drugs in a nightclub. He then proceeds to brush his teeth with such fervor for his ever so exciting future. One thing that children love more than getting attention is sticking it to their parents.

Now, humble reader, you may feel the need to interject at this point and tell your immodest columnist that I clearly have underlying issues with my own childhood, but this is not the case. This is how the ad-men want you to treat people who find the sight of children on TV abhorrent instead of cute, endearing and guilt inducing. The children in the public service announcements are menacingly attached to horrific social malaises as if they are the true victims of an uncaring society. We are being constantly asked to consider future generations, to make life better for them. All I envision is a new generation of apathetic droids emerging with a fag sticking out of their collectively foppish mouth and an enormous bottle of Cherry Lambrini in hand to chug on the way to the discotheque. 

So, perhaps I am uncaring. Perhaps I am soulless, and I should let myself be madly affected by the government’s children. Perhaps I should just sit back and relax while the three horsemen of the infant apocalypse scourge the ne’er-do-wells who dare to listen to their warnings, but I refuse to remain idle. Any advert campaign with children in it is destined to fail. I refuse to be conned by the acts of desperate ad-men who can’t think of a tool more convincing than shoving careless sprogs into the glare of the public eye to sell water, or to say that climate change is a bad thing, or that perhaps by eating sweetcorn one might turn into a big green giant. It adds a whole other specious dimension to the already mindless advert break. Rant over, it’s time to make myself a coffee. The adverts are on. 

February 25, 2010

A note on economic circumstances


Someone said ‘shit, this makes no sense’, and the world sunk to its knees again . We exchanged our feet for cake. We ate until we were fatter. We sunk the world. And lower, still.
I could kill that someone. If I wanted to leave my bed, I could kill. With a steak knife. Or a dessert spoon.
The cake was worth it. Not one of us can run. We are more equal than ever.

A man on the TV proposed the sale of our legs for some more sugar. Somehow, someone did something. And we have no legs. So the world grated soft our stronger genitals.
I could fuck that someone. If I could leave my bed, I could fuck. With a steak knife. Or a dessert spoon.
The sugar was worth it. Not one of us can walk. We are more equal than ever.

And lower, still.

Piles of dough.
Pits should be dug for all the shit.


February 23, 2010

My Philosophy. Number Two.



can't be

what you wan t 


just air.

it's alljustwater and ai.r

February 22, 2010

My Philosophy. Number One.





Metal pt.1


Metal on metal on metal. And sheets. And noise, an itchy noise. And an amputated hand grip on my knee. Anonymous love and care and boredom. More metal. The hand is metal. My eyes, lips, ear lobes. 

A fan presses air in the background. Killing itself. For nothing. It will clank to its death and no-one will offer finger comfort. The sky a gravestone in its mass grave. With all the other cars. 

Rebirth...either a monster or a storm. Nothing good can come of a metal revolution.

What if Jesus was wrong?

“Darling. Poppet. My love. Dearie. Duck. Sweet-Pea. Sausage. Mate. Mate. Mate. Poppet. My love. Chair. Darling. Nurse! Oh, my love. Oh, poppet. Oh, dear. Oh, sausage.”

light flash



and the fan breathes. It clunks, then breathes. It saw me.




So. I believe I'm supposed to be looking into influences. I read a lot of blogs so I would say that blog-land people have an influence on me and therefore on my writing.

Here follows a list of the blogs I like to frequent. Some are music blogs, some fashion, some just writing. Some are a combination. This list will probably (definitely) grow.






















February 15, 2010

My Heroine Pretend

italian futurism

There was a disagreement on the train. Man, mole on forehead, staring into his dog-haired wife/girlfriend/sister’s clumpy eyes. Fountains of stray hairs fail over her foundation. It’s not fair to call it a face. Water, yes. She needs more water.
‘There aren’t any reservations. We’re not moving.’
She said. He looked like he always did. Tired of growing old. Gripping onto everything nothing, because.
‘We’re not moving.’
But he can speak.

Reservation lady. It’s fair to say that she was portly. Red lattice jumper, thinking about latticed sausage and liver pie. And we exchanged several glances. And people might call that love, in another setting. But the modern-day Rosa Parks lovers’ refusal sponged her eyes. She was dry. Water. She needed more water.

And I sat in my red train seat, fantasising about having tea with Julien Soren. Trying to catch the eye of a fat woman. Trying to make traveling to Somerset exciting.
There was a poster in Leamington station. The wonders of the South West. It said. The wonders. The windows here are the same as everywhere. Rain like acne. Perhaps it’ll grow old. Perhaps the windows will crease. Perhaps I will see Somerset through a distorted lens. Perhaps it will be magic.

And I will disappear.

And reappear, again, in New York.

Or Oslo. Probably Oslo.

February 13, 2010

Two Lovers


Two lovers. 

A baby.

There are always two lovers and a baby. And she cheats. And he forgives. And they live, slightly fragmented, together.

And the baby resents. And grows. And resents.


It can either be great, be nothing, or murder. 

And then, then everyone dies. And someone else writes another story about two lovers and a baby.


I had an idea for a story. I was sat on a hill, on the top of a busy hill. People who scoffed at irony puddled the grass. I sat, pad in hand, masterpiece on the tongue. A woman. An abortion. A foetus. A woman. A birth. A boy. A tragedy. Pow. Pow. Pow. And awards and glory and money, so much money. Splashed, no, drenched by the puddles. And I will be a flood. 

Then I threw my pen. No. I stabbed the ground. I planted my pen. My gold pen. It has more worth. I cannot make an ache. I cannot carve a star out of my too-thin strings of arms. I can chop. I can reduce. I cannot, I cannot make and make.

And I walked. And I danced because. And I made friends for months and drank strawberry milkshakes on chewing-gum benches. And I wrote essays about dead people.

Present tense.


Two lovers.

A gun.

There are always two lovers and a gun. And he kills. And she cries. And they live, slightly fragmented, together.

And the police find them. 


She can take the blame, cover for him or visit him. And cheat.

And then, then everyone dies. And someone else writes another story about two lovers and a gun.


You know how this carries on.

You know how this carries on.

Write it yourself.

February 12, 2010


2 out of 5 stars


Drugs. They’re everywhere, apparently. And they look damn attractive. Skins is back and they’re all doing it. From Anonymous Suicide Girl in episode one, who performed the remarkable feat of parting a drunken crowd with nothing more than the anticipation of a fall, to Thomas, who can afford a modern house on the back of his drug pushing, it is obvious that drugs can grant you both superhuman powers and everlasting wealth. Pass me the syringe. I want me some of this life-changing ofcourseonlyinapositiveway elixir.

   Drugs have a great history on TV. In particular, weed. I cannot remember one bad weed-related incident on TV. Everyone seems to love it. Those crazy Peep Show chaps are always ‘stoked’ and they’re ruddy hilarious. Yes, their drug induced haze only ever seems to result in public embarrassment but at least they’re having fun... Even dour Betty Draper on Mad Men got in on the act recently. Cannabis not only got her in with the other ad-men, it also gave her inspiration to rise head and shoulders above her pesky male counterparts.

   Prescription medication has a slightly worse reputation. Dr. House’s addiction to Vicodin renders him totally and utterly unlovable because he’s always so ruddy grumpy. Nurse Jackie seems to be doing alright on her snort-and-relax pills but her increasingly short temper, forgetfulness and propensity to have nose bleeds can only lead to one thing: a major melt-down. Perhaps one on the same scale as Lynette Scavo from Desperate Housewives way back in season one, where her dependence on anti-depressants almost led to her suicide. Grim stuff. In all honesty, all this teaches me is that addiction to prescription medication is not the way forward: it’s a pathetic drug to be addicted to. It’s unglamorous, is only taken by mardy neurotics and doesn’t even produce a high.

   No. As keen followers of the deranged habits of ‘crazy’ Television characters, we like to stay up to date with all of the latest drugs crazes. Smoke opium with the Desperate Romantics! Snort coke with Skins! Take roofies with Hollyoaks! Of course, I am being silly. In most programs drugs are shown to have negative side-effects. If one takes drugs in Hollyoaks, one will either end up arrested or dead. There is no middle ground. Oh, actually, there is. Rape. You will end up raped, à la Sam-whatshisface from the Hollyoaks Late Night Specials. Everyone seems to die in Desperate Romantics. Granted, it is semi-historical and there were other underlying health issues like a complete lack of antibiotics in the nineteenth century, but drugs play a salient role. It’s only really in Skins that most people seem to come off relatively unscathed most of the time.

   Which leads me to the whole point of this drug-high diatribe. Skins. I used to like it because I was a 15 year-old public school boy. Bristol night life seemed so mysterious. I have now been out in Bristol many times. Life is not like that there. Life is not like Skins anywhere. Skins is about as representative of the youth of today as Jackie Stallone is of the elderly. When people take drugs in other programs, they turn away from being the vapid air-sacs that the writers of Skins dare to call characters. I bet they’re not even snorting cocaine, but indulging in a bit of Dip-Dab. Skins is a pathetic legal high. It is a classless, empty con of a drug. Give me Mad Men’s weed any day, because I’m not buying whatever Skins is trying to sell me.