An Average Day

Sometimes – actually quite often – I am asked the question, “How was your day?” There is no mystery about this. Laetitia is doing the asking and she doesn’t, as a rule, get a hell of a lot back in reply. I tend not to be forthcoming, mostly because there is absolutely bugger all to say about the average day I spend at work and doing the things I need to do to get there and back home again.

On rare occasions when something has happened or an event needs sharing I either get worked up enough that an animated retelling becomes shouting, or I’m not in the mood to revisit the events and so don’t. Which isn’t very helpful to anyone – me included – and the question was only ever intended to ask about what has happened since I last saw you, and despite understanding this the answer is still a variation on the theme of not much. It isn’t evasion either: quite simply very little happens.

In the spirit of personal inquiry (and because I want to write about something) a kind of detailed review of my day this Tuesday January 10 will follow. Apologies if it just isn’t very interesting.

Walked to the train station, listening to Classic FM on the radio. Possibly passed through a spider web leaving a strand or two stuck to my head, possibly didn’t – I can’t remember, but this does happen an awful lot this time of year. A young man wearing pants a few sizes smaller than mine appeared from a side street and proceeded to walk at the same speed, and with close to matching gait, but a stride or two ahead, the way people do, as if they want to be walking near someone, as if that’s fun and being alone as you walk somewhere is somehow hateful, and so I pulled ahead by increasing speed. He was fiddling with his phone as he walked and when he finished and put the device away he pulled ahead of me – passing me altogether too easily – and at least put some distance between the two of us.

The train overshot the platform by more than a full carriage. This never happens. A man near me on the platform said as much, in patchy English, as we were about to board. Taken aback by this communication I tried to say something and a dry croaky sound came out of my throat.

Read my book Underworld by Don DeLillo. It’s very big. Enjoying it. Dialogue is interesting in the way he understands that two people can often be engaged in parallel conversations at the same time. Getting a sense of the mosaic and how different strands of the story are developing and will relate to each other. More interesting and impressive than satisfying as a read yet, but that is coming – there are already signs. Looking forward to reading it again tomorrow, and that is always a good thing.

Work meant filling the thermos with boiling water for herbal tea – herbal teas in fact – and preparing a small bowl of cereal and checking the score from the Arsenal-Leeds FA Cup third round encounter. Checking this result online was interrupted when I recalled that it was my turn (with a colleague) to operate, fill and empty the dishwasher today. There was still the load from yesterday, some items of which were not clean, and I put another tablet in and turned the thing back on again. This was done so that yesterday could be done, finished, over, and I could make a start on whatever the zoo animals I work with chose to put on our used cutlery and receptacles tray during the day. But the pair of colleagues who had been charged with yesterday’s dishwasher duties decided on a different strategy – stop the machine mid cycle, remove the items which were clean, put them away, and abandon the less clean things, which were being cleaned when they stopped the machine which cleans such items, on the side of the sink in the room where the machine is, where they would become the problem of today’s dishwasher pair – ie me, ie the person who had already put into place a strategy for cleaning those very plates and bowls which they had halted the cleaning of to leave them in the room near the sink. Unbelievable really.

Thierry Henry played his first game for Arsenal, on loan from a Major League team in the US, since 2007, and he scored, and we won, and I love him still. The way you can love a moody French bloke you’ve never met who kicks a ball very very well.

Work was the same stuff. Very brief summaries of current affairs shows – a very loosely applied term when you mean A Current Affair and Today Tonight – and cutting out ads from our digital recordings for the SMS industry watchdog which needs copies of all the competitions and other types of TV ads which ask consumers to SMS to enter.

Then working on a date, in this case January 1. Inputting all the new ads on the list into the database and not putting in ads on the list which the diagnostic system which finds these things thought were new but actually weren’t and therefore shouldn’t go into the database at all. Brief walk at lunchtime, well after eating my own lunch at 11:30 (a lovely curry Laetitia made the other night) and bought a lecture pad to write current affairs story summaries and other relevant notes on, as the pad for last year is getting full. Read articles and did work and marvelled at how the general standard of information as it is entered into the database has become so abysmal in recent times and thought what I usually think when that thought occurs: clearly nobody else gives a shit about this, so don’t worry.

Home via a couple of newsagents, looking for a calendar, also for work, to be able to do what I do better and more accurately because I care and don’t take it for granted that I have a job even though what I do leaves a lot to be desired in so many ways. It has pictures of thoroughbred horses on it.

At home Laetitia had taken down the Christmas decorations. Bit later than this really ought to be done, but she did it all herself, which is bloody impressive and shows that even when being lazy and playing Skyrim she isn’t really being lazy at all.

And that was my day.

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Published in: on January 10, 2012 at 7:24 pm  Leave a Comment  

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