Friday 27th April 2001- we can perform under pressure

Today we had our audition and oh man we rocked! I’m hyper now! Got into school this morning and went straight to Mr Hendries room to squeeze in some much needed practice before registration. It was not looking good at all. We knew our individual parts but when it came to putting it all together we could not keep in time with each other. At interval it was back to Mr Hendries room for more practice and to let Jack hear the song for the first time. He didn’t practice at all but Tina assured me he is a genius on the drums. It still wasn’t looking too good, we were just so out of time and the closer it got to the audition the more nervous I felt. So we went up at lunch time to set all the equipment up in one of the music rooms. We didn’t even have time to run through once before Mrs Campbell came to hear us play. So Jack counted us in and we just threw ourselves into it. It was fantastic! Jack’s drumming was perfect and with him keeping the rhythm me and Tina were able to keep in time with each other. When I heard our music blasting out of the amps all nerves vanished and I was lost in the song. I really enjoyed it. It worked so well. It was such a great achievement for us to pull it all together in just two days. I’m so proud of us as we have shown we have talent and can perform under pressure. Wow! I’m going to get my own bass, but until then I have Tom’s. Oh what a brilliant start to our band!

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Thursday 26th April 2001- I have mastered the verse and the twangy chorus bits

More shit, you know the kind. I was carrying Tom’s bass around school today so I told those bullies I would hit them with it if they didn’t shut up. It seemed to work, they backed down a bit. Of course I wouldn’t do that really, it would cause them too much damage and more importantly I wouldn’t want to break tom’s beautiful bass. But the threat seemed to deter them, maybe I’ve found a way to make them get lost.

Anyway, today was a day of rehearsing like mad for an audition we have tomorrow and getting in a total state over it. We were using the school amps but it wasn’t looking good, we hadn’t rehearsed enough, and I only started playing bass on Tuesday. But I have mastered the verse and the twangy chorus bits which is amazing given how little time we’ve had. I was doubtful as to whether this whole thing would work but Tina phoned me tonight and made me believe we could conquer the world if we wanted to. She said we should just go for it tomorrow and see how it goes. She said I had done amazing and had great potential. We agreed that it wouldn’t be the end of the world if we weren’t chosen to perform because as long as we do well then we have proved to ourselves we can play together and that will be enough. She was full of positivity and she’s passed that on to me. By the end of the call we were both like ‘yes we can do this, we are the best, we will show them just how good we can be.’

I had a seven hour shift at the Tryst after school which meant we couldn’t rehearse tonight but I’m confident we will do ourselves proud. We will succeed! I know we will1

Saturday 21st April 2001- A band!

Today we went to the forge shopping centre in the park head area of Glasgow. It was a nasty place and I didn’t like it one bit! Why? I’ll tell you why! It was like stepping into ned city! Now do you see why I didn’t like it? It was filled with evil looking people wearing baseball caps, socks pulled over their trousers and hundreds of gold jewellery (sovereign rings, hoop earrings, name chains, the usual) and amongst them all was me in my baggy combats, bandana and Feeder T-shirt and a skull chain. I was the only mosher in the whole place! I won’t be going back there in a hurry. On the way home we went the wrong way and ended up in the most foul estate I have ever seen. All the flats were borders up with their roofs missing, many had been burned out and all where covered in graffiti. It reminded me of how I imagine Edgefield to look like in ‘World Against Me’. It would be a good location for filming as long as the cameras didn’t get nicked! Tina phoned to let me know she wasn’t ignoring me last night, her phone had just ran out of credit. I talked to her about my guitar playing and how I seem to be inclined to pick out the bass parts of the songs and she suggested we could start a band and she could play guitar and I could try bass. I’m all for it considering it’s been my dream since the age of about nine. She says Tom (Jack’s best friend and bassist in Jack’s band) will let me borrow his bass no problem. A band! I know we won’t actually get anywhere but hey, what fun I used to have in our band in Newcastle with Laura even though we were unbelievably crap. It’s just a hobby, some messing about, that’s all.

Thursday 8th March 2001- School Revolution

School. Good God I hope the place burns down. I’ve often thought how funny it would be to start a revolution from inside the school. If every last pupil agreed to get up and walk out at the same time the teachers could do nothing. What fun it would be! Ha Ha! Of course, it might not be such a wise idea to throw away your education. No, not so wise at all. The closest I will ever get to a school revolution is the new novel I am planning in which the kids all walk out of school only in the story they actually have a real reason to do so. Oh well, I suppose the world pf fiction is the best place to carry such mad cap ideas. Thank God for my ability to write. And on that subject, my new song ‘Automated Happiness’ is proving to boast a beautiful set of lyrics. I showed what I have so far to Tina, and I got the impression she liked it even more than ‘Angels in Strait Jackets’. She says I have gone all philosophical, maybe I have. She says my lyrics are very similar to the things Barry writes (he’s in Jack’s band) because all of his songs are philosophical too. My lyrics have certainly grown since I first started writing songs. They didn’t seem to have any meaning before. They do now. They are very persona;l and men a lot to me. ‘Automated happiness’ is about my feelings towards Jack and all that’s happened involving him. Tina says I have earned a place in her book of quotes and that’s not easy to do!

Tuesday March 6th 2001- Terrible Spelling

School again and I already wish it was the weekend. As usual I made a complete fool of myself in English, this time in both lessons. First one was with Mr. Williams and he had been marking our prelim papers. As you can probably gather from these pages my spelling is dreadful and apparently I had spelled character wrong all the way through my paper. He made me stand up in front of the class and spell it. And I couldn’t. Why did he have to make an example of me in front of the class? He had already pointed out the mistake on my actual paper, wasn’t that enough without humiliating me in front of everyone? He might as well have put me in the corner and stuck a big white dunce hat on me. Embarrassing me won’t solve a long running problem like this. There mist be something wrong with me at my age and I can’t even spell properly. Another daft thing I do is I still mix up b’s and d’s and I frequently miss letters out of words. My brain doesn’t function like a normal persons, it is broken, because I don’t think anyone else at my age does that. I can’t read out loud anymore either. I used to be able to, I was really good at it, but now when the teacher ask me to its as if my tongue is tied in knots and the words all spill out wrong and jumbled so it looks like I can’t even read properly. And I’m supposed to be a writer. A writer who can’t even spell, write the wrong letters and can’t even seem to speak properly. Great, superb, excellent, I’m sure I will be a great success. Not! Shit! The fire alarm went off in music today as well and we had to stand outside for ages on the red ash pitch which was a total wet mush so for he second time my trainers have been ruined because of a false alarm.

Saturday 3rd March 2001- Writing

Weekend, thank God! We had to stay in today because Lauri, our next door neighbour, was fixing our car, yet again. Anyway, even is he wasn’t we wouldn’t have had time to do anything because we all slept in until 11.30. 11.30! Now that’s just ridiculous! We didn’t go to bed late so there was no excuse for sleeping so late.

I continued to work on my book, ‘world against me’ and it’s still going strong. It’s not grown boring like some of my other stuff has once it gets past about 100 pages. This book is a fighter, just like Travis! I also made a decision about the other two books that will eventually form a part of this plan- they will both stay but ‘second chance’ will have to be rewritten because the original format is no longer appropriate. As for the untitled one, I haven’t started that yet so there is no worries there. They will no longer be stand alone novels but will be combined into one book, ‘World Against Me’ will come first, then ‘Second Chance” then untitled. The second two will be presented to us by Travis at the end of ‘World Against me’ as journals he has found- the first narrated by his Mother and the second by his Father. They won’t be independent novels but sort of extensions of ‘World Against Me’. They are there to clarify and expand on a lot of things mentioned in the interlude of ‘World Against Me’. Basically they will provide the background and history of the events that occur in Thorngate in ‘World Against Me’. This must be the perfect way to handle this. It means I won;t loose all of the essential information contained in “Second Chance” but having ‘World Against Me’ presented first and standing as the main novel I loose the risk of it being discredited by the other novels coming first because they aren’t as good. I’m so glad I’ve found a suitable solution!

Friday 2nd March 2001- Happy New Hair Band

School again today. I was talking to Jack again in music. I had my hair down instead of tied back today and he came in saying “Happy New Hair Cut!” I told him I hadn’t had my hair cut so he started shouting “Happy new hair band!” because I had a new hair band. I managed to uphold cute a good conversation with him before the teacher came in and dragged him away to do some guitar recording. He was telling me how he doesn’t other to get dressed up smart for photos and could never picture himself in a suit and will even get married in casual clothes. I couldn’t see him in a suit either, he’s perfect the way he is. I talked to him about his band too and he said I have to come to all of his concerts when he is famous. I told him about my band I had in Newcastle before we moved here too and I found out he has relatives there and visited three times a year. I could have went on talking to him for longer if the teacher hadn’t disturbed us. Who was I kidding yesterday? Love doesn’t die that easily! It’s clear that is every conversation we have means so much to me I must, and do, want his for more than a friend. The feelings are back with vengeance, just listening to him talk is almost enough to drive me insane and looking at him is torture. I could still win him over. I really could. I love him. Unlike with other people I have liked in the past I feel very comfortable around him, I can actually talk to him, and I know, just know, that he isn’t judging me the way other people do. In fact that’s true of most moshers in general, that’s why I like them. You are allowed to be whoever you want and they never say you aren’t cool because you allowed to just be yourself!