Thursday 28 June 2012

Stop The World I Want To Get Off

No-one rings me. People don’t really like me; I have made it clear I am not a phone person, and -least relevantly – I am five foot eight. I am of course talking only about proper people, missed calls off people telling me about PPIs or offering me loans are tenapenny. Actual human beings who I know, they never ring me. Which is fine, I’m fine with being disliked/not liked (not the same thing) and I am certainly fine with not being phoned.

The boringly negative paragraph was to establish that the norm is for me to not receive phone calls.

As much as I am happy to be perceived as a culture vulture, I don’t spend all my time sat in theatres in a position where I really can’t check my phone for fear of offending the performer and fellow audience members. I’m just not in that scenario that often.

That boringly boring paragraph was to establish that it is infrequent that I am in a position to take a phone call. Combined with the first paragraph, I am trying to establish that it is quite unlikely for (a) my phone to ring, well vibrate (always on silent) and (b) were the phone to ring the norm is that I would be in a position to answer it.

A third point, kind of related to the first, is that if I do hear my phone ring/vibrate the instantaneous thought in my head is that something terrible has happened. For the last year or so this means thinking that something bad as happened to my dad. This isn’t trying to ask for pity, I could give a fuck what you think, I am just establishing the state of mind for…..

Sat in the dark at The Royal Exchange several minutes into Daniel Kitson’s 90-minute one man show and my phone vibrates in my pocket. It lasts longer than two vibrates so is a phone call. Surely people know where I am, I put it on Facebook and Twitter, I think: in fact you would just have to be pretending you didn’t know I was there were you to act like you didn’t know I was there. But it’s just one call, enjoy the show: it was probably just a sales call. Yeah right, at 8:15 PM?! Fuck off!

IGNORE IT! If it was a serious thing about your dad or anyone else then someone would ring again. Just enjoy the show.

My phone vibrates again 30 seconds later. Two phone calls in a minute is quite urgent. Why don’t they just fuck off? After it finishes ringing the second time there is a smaller curtailed vibrate: I have a voicemail. Surely if someone was dead/dying there would be more of an effort than two calls and a voicemail? Yeah. But…no-one rings me, so two calls in a minute and a voicemail, tha’s practically phonecallageddon. I should nip out and check it,really – rather than have it naggging on my mind throughout the show.

This isn’t the first time this has happened. Remember how I said no-one rang me and that I am rarely in a position to not take a call? Well, I’ll be honest, I was just setting it up for me saying: the rare phone calls tend to coincide with me not being able to look at my phone. I know. What are the odds? Just my luck, I’d say. Only a fool wouldn’t just step out for a second and get the worry off their mind. Rather than struggle to, but still actually manage, to maintain focus on the show. That was idiotic.

I check the phone on leaving. The missed calls are from my sister. I feel a bit guilty. I listen to the voicemail. It’s my sister telling me she is reneging on reneging on going to The Stone Roses gig on Sunday.

I vow to turn my phone off the next time I am in such a scenario. Lesson learned.

**Anyone wanting my thoughts on Daniel Kitson should probably ask me. I decide what goes in this blog. Whatevz

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