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Wednesday 3rd September 2003

I was going to stay in last night, but got chatting on my messenger thing with Ben Moor from Planet Mirth and went out to play Frisbee Golf instead. He's obsessed with it. It involves throwing a frisbee at some trees, some of which are some distance away. You score like golf.
What a ridiculous, childish and pointless hobby.
Not like CNPS.

Actually it was fun, even though Ben won. I reluctantly shook his proferred hand.
He also has a hundred per cent success rate over me at Scrabble. Though we have only played once and he was lucky. Like the IRA he only has to be lucky once. Unlike the IRA he did the job on the first time of trying.

Then we went drinking and wandered around aimlessly from bar to bar. We ended the evening in a late opening underground Spanish restaurant down one of London's windy back streets.
It was deceptively huge, but there were very few people in there. Maybe about ten at most when we arrived.
Yet on a small stage in the centre of the restaurant, a beautiful young woman was doing the most amazing flamenco dancing. It was perhaps more beautiful and poignant because so few people were there. Half of them weren't even watching, yet she was still totally committed. The pride of the dance still shone through. It was breath-taking. And a wonderful example of professionalism which all performers could learn from. You play the room as if it's full, even if it's empty.

It's weird to think of all the rooms in the world and all the things that are going on and then reflect on which things you occasionally stumble across by chance. If anyone had asked me to go and see some flamenco dancing with them I would probably have made a feeble excuse about washing my hare (I have a hare. He's frequently dirty. People would believe me), but here I was caught up in the grace and the passion, captivated by the movement of her body, her red dress, her dark eyes.
All that we can miss out on by self-imposed isolation. London is a wonderful city and it galls me that I don't make the most of it. I think of all the hours wasted watching TV, drinking beer. I am a bit like Ben Folds in that respect.
I felt cross that so few people were here, that no-one knew about this. Yet also privileged that our search for after hours drinking had rewarded us with this unexpected bonus.
I would have liked to talk to the flamenco dancer afterwards and possibly have asked her to marry me, so that I could watch her dance for me every night, until she is too old to dance and I am too old to watch, but not so old that I can't look into those dark eyes, unchanged by the years, still full of passion and life and remember the days of our youth when we laughed in the face of our mortality by dancing and drinking and making love.
But she was Spanish and the only thing I can say in Spanish is "May include knob gags." Such is my curse.

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