Thursday, 16 April 2009


I wrote this post (with a different intro.) to cover up the last one, all about another illness poor Lucy had to endure. I meant this piece to be more upbeat, cheerful – it is Spring after all – maybe about my little brother and the good guy he is.

But that will have to wait because, as it happened, this ended up pretty bleak too. “The dusty bird” (as I call our new local Registered Social Landlord [RSL]) had risen up again.

And I’d been meaning to say, I wouldn’t allow things to get any worse!

Still, Lucy – praise God! – was back to fighting fit. Me? I’d have to keep fighting… Even as I was preparing to post this, I had more problems with the mythical creature.

The gas dept. of our RSL (plain English now!) just would not accept that some of us – I – choose not to have gas because “they” are such a nuisance and forced the “nuisance” of the annual gas service on me, anyway. Thus, I was preoccupied for, at least a month…

I was determined they wouldn’t come in and they had even threatened “forced entry”! (Yes, I did threaten them with legal action and did speak to human rights lawyers and the Health and Safety Executive [guess whose “health and safety” were actually at risk - and it wasn’t because of gas of which there was/is, none here!]). I won in the end (I should think so: they could see it was disconnected in the meter cupboard, outside above the dustbin cupboard near the front door!) and we (Tom) just signed one of their forms stating what I had stated all along.

So that was that. And, even a post that wasn’t meant to be about what it was eventually about, was postponed by another aspect of what it was about (namely, the – “everything’s new to us, you’re just a guinea-pig” local RSL).

Any plans I had for an immediate brighter future dissipated into a cloud of dust-motes.

The following is what I wrote the first time brother Blob was put on hold (let’s get it out of the way – and, hopefully, never come back to it: I saw how, especially, building works, can put a brick wall between you and creativity back at the last – regeneration – address).

No more SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder) - at least for the 2008-9 winter. And no more SAD-ness from me. I state that now and you can keep reminding me of it, as needs-be. I hope they won’t. But, then again, those “Improvement” works Lucy told you about, are on their way. I’ve definitely got a hard time to come, if it’s not already here: I’ve had to make countless ‘phone calls (getting nowhere) reacting to countless paper (none of it recycled which disgusts me) missives from them – our new RSL.

They call themselves Community Housing, and, while I admit, in theory, that’s a good thing – made up as they are, mostly from tenants – it does mean they possess the three ‘e’s most guaranteed to upset the elderly and infirm: excitement; enthusiasm, and energy. Not such a good thing.

Add to that, the fact that they’re all share-holders and you see why I envisage problems further down the line: save (the properties, and rents with increases); invest (i.e. with improvements and landscaping); sell (to a Private Landlord at an all-important profit)!

And, ah, well, I might know all this and it might be driving me mad knowing it but, thanks to the ever-progressing MS and all its dis-abilities, there’s not much I can do about it. I am not on a newspaper any more but rather, stuck here, immobile and so “allergic” to noise and disruption that trying to keep them away must take precedence. Ergo: countless phone-calls and stressing from a personal point-of-view, usurp any thinking and acting on behalf of anyone else. And I hate that.

But you’ve heard enough about all this and not only here (see also Comment Column). The “work” is set to go on for five years. I doubt I will. So, let’s all just keep watching this space and I’ll do my best to get Lucy and me out, before they take me out in the proverbial box. (To that end, in the last couple of months, I’ve: kept working on “best-sellers”; put in for a house-swap [but that was the RSL and it went wrong]; started playing the lottery online, and prayed, prayed, prayed!)

With you and your support, I don’t really see I can go wrong. Thank you, guys.

As I say to Lucy: “We’ll get there!”

P.S. #1 And I end up covering up a sad post with an equally “sad” (using the vernacular) one on a different subject? Oh dear, not what I had planned. I had hoped to write a post on “Uncle (my brother) Blob”. Tell you what, I’ll try to get that in, on top of this one!

P.S. #2 I would hate you to get the impression that all I do is sit worrying about – minor – bureaucracy. I certainly don’t. In the minutes when I’m not dealing with it – or Lucy’s health, or mine (in that order!) – I’m hiding in the fictions I told you about in November (NaNoWriMo). Writing make-believe for quiet escapism and a feeling (more pretence?) of total control. It gives me something back of myself.

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