What it is like to have schizophrenia. Part 1.

Arrogant queer. Fucking paedo. Go and cry to your mum. Slob. Too much money. Greedy bastard. Your aunt will have to visit you in jail. Whore. Talentless fuckwit. You were shite. You’ve forgotten how to play it. You must be gay. You only think of yourself. Wigger. Go have a bath. You’ll just get stupider. You’re unfit. Poof. You look ridiculous. Vapid bore. You don’t know how to do anything. Go get a job. They set you up. You love money. Total wretch. Failure. You used logic. Well done you can read. Boring. Pagan. Heathen. This is what you get for not believing in God. You want war. Adult baby. Crybaby. He hates marriage. He’s materialistic. He wants child benefit. Fake. Violent gay. Welsh dickhead. You love drugs. You’re diabetic. He doesn’t love her. She made you paranoid. Alcoholic. More arse kissing. You went mad. You’ve made up your entire life. You keep getting it wrong. The Army would have made a man of you. You’ve got nothing. You’re a perverted rich man. You’re playing it wrong. Arrogant cunt. Fucking gypsy. All you’ve got is Facebook. He wants homework. You chase knowledge. He’s just become a big lazy fucker. You love heroin. His poor friends. You’re killing yourself. Vain cunt. Racist. He’s not even a good lad. You’re too slow. Shallow. Dole pig. You’ve done nothing. You’re just a drug using pervert. You’re in a failed relationship. This is what you get for being arrogant and thick. Stupid. Benefit fraud. He’s going to jail. He’s going back to hospital. Cheat. Drug dealer. You need help. It’ll happen again. Bored and vain. You’ll die of cancer. Call that working? You don’t do anything difficult. Pussy. Drama queen. Fucking coward. Come and fight me then. You’re a broken loser. Did you enjoy your paedophile breakfast?


Fucking bastard army twat face

Thought I had got rid of the bastard. Well I had for about three weeks after telling him to Fuck Off and leave me alone. But it seems he is back. The usual chat about the Army, about how I am a coward and not a man, for not joining up. Well fuck you dick face. I am a Quaker first and foremost which means I refute all conflict, I am therefore a conscientious objector in the face of war. I never had any interest in guns, tanks or planes when growing up and made sure I didn’t get involved in any fights as a lad. Not because I was too scared to get hurt, but because of what my Mum would have said about it and also because I instinctively knew that non violent reaction is the best way to solve conflict. I spent a year in Army cadets because it was obligatory at my school, I hated pretty much all of it and left as soon as I could to serve my community in other ways. I didn’t believe we should be going to war in Iraq in the first place so why would I sign my life away in the name of killing most probably innocent civilians in some foreign field? I saw through The Old Lie, Dulce et ducorem est, pro patria mori. Not for me. I’m a lover not a fighter. There was plenty of chance to be brave on the rugby and football fields, taking my dignity in hand by performing music in front of hundreds of people, or standing up for the rights of my fellow students as a services officer.

Not to mention the fact that if I had gone into the Army, you wouldn’t have the Internet as it is today, or wind power, or mobile phones, or digital TV or radio, or any of my other inventions / developments. These needed a free and easy flowing mind to create, not one who is forced to obey orders.

He is just sore about Brexit and the fact that his gammon faced agenda is being shown up for the racist nonsense that it is. One million people marched in London this week for putting the Brexit vote to a second referendum. One million. Meanwhile Nigel Farage’s Brexit Betrayal march garnered about 150 participants.

Anyway as a consequence of arguing with Jim over my midnight salmon and rice, I have spewed rice everywhere including up my nose. The fucker. He claims to be “deeper” than me. The only deep thing about him is the shit he is in come Judgement Day. Wanker.

Is There Anybody Out There?

Just wondering… does anybody ever phone each other any more? Does anyone use Facebook Chat? Does anyone ever meet up with friends for a beer or a coffee? Because I sure as hell don’t. Is this just me? Is it a male thing? Where have all my friends gone? Is it because I don’t have any kids that no one wants to talk to me? Or because I am unemployed? Or my mental health issues? Either way, I know I have 735 Facebook friends, all good friends at some point or other in my past, and I have seen maybe two or three of them in the past year in person. This can’t be right, surely.

Pea is out of her shell now and becoming an awesome little human being. Simon sent me some photos today of bath time – she is a right little water baby!

Wales play England in what is likely to be the Grand Slam decider next Saturday. I wish it was over already. Can’t take the tension of another week of rivalry and voices.

Drinking Earl Grey tea (just like my Gran) which is pretty pleasant, but I made it too strong.

Oh yeah – took two guitars up to Great Broughton (Orange House) to get them fixed. Met a lovely chap called Neil who is the husband of one of Rachel’s ex colleagues – he is going to do the work, after a brief discussion we worked out what the problems were and how he was going to approach fixing them up. The Tele has electrical faults, the Ibanez we think has the bridge on the wrong way around, hence it is out of position. This is entirely my fault for not being more careful when restringing the guitar last summer. Neil’s shed is pretty tiny but he has two benches in there which are set up ideally for fixing guitars, he has a qualification in instrument repair so I am happy leaving my pride and joy with him to look over.

We had a plumbing issue yesterday as our hot tap in the kitchen disintegrated and was stuck full on. Thankfully a nice man from British Gas was able to shut off and isolate the hot tap so that all other taps and appliances in the house are still working. Just needs a new part which hopefully may be stocked in B&Q or maybe Firns Hardware.

Went for a beautiful but windy walk with Rachel on Elva Plain near Setmurthy. This is the site of a murder by the infamous Immolation Man from the Mark Craven novel “The Puppet Show”. Or rather the stone circle is – we couldn’t find it, just a barren rocky outcrop with fantastic views over Skiddaw, Sale Fell and the River Derwent. Still quite a spooky place to visit in the gloaming, especially considering the malign intentions of the character in the novel.

Mum and Dad are back from their trip to Cambridge and are now up in Cockermouth, ready for the wardrobe surveyor who is coming out tomorrow afternoon. One more step along the road to a finished spare room. Then we have to paint the house, decorate the landing and hall, replace the boiler and buy a new hob / replace the kitchen… oh dear it’s going to be expensive!

The Italian Job

This week started with some amazing news and quickly degenerated into a full blown battle to stay alive – for me that is!

On Saturday 02/02/19, after an eighteen hour labour, little Pea finally made her appearance into the world! Congratulations Simon and Meaghan! She weighed seven pounds and three ounces at birth, delivery was by forceps as her head was turned the wrong way. But apparently a fairly straightforward process! Unfortunately the proud parents had a bit of a scare as the baby lost a bit too much weight early on, and was showing signs of dehydration (despite latching on properly, they just couldn’t get quite enough milk in at first) and her sodium levels were a bit high. So a return to Addenbrooke’s Hospital was necessary to stay overnight and resolve the issue. Glad to say that now, Mother, Baby and Tired Father are all home and doing well. The baby has been properly named Annabelle Annear Thomas, although Pea is likely to stick for some time I feel.

Pea is not the only one to have been feeling a bit under the weather this week, as Sunday brought a debilitating virus to the R.Thomas household. Rach had it first and then I got it the next day, a deep chest infection / headache / weakness / sore throat / cough /  runny nose which has knocked me out all week. Rachel, bless her, has been getting up and going to work every day, which just goes to show that girls don’t get as ill as blokes!!! Haha. As usual when ill, my mental health also went to shit, I was extremely depressed if not suicidal at one point, the voices returned, and sleep patterns are topsy turvy again. On Wednesday afternoon, I went for a quick walk round the block, and was so weak and faint on my return that I panicked and rang for an ambulance – I thought I was going into a diabetic coma!!! Never have I felt so bad with just a cold. Thankfully I managed to feel better before they sent one out to me, I would have been embarrassed had it arrived! Anyway, as I write this on Saturday evening, thankfully the cough is the only real sign left of the body’s reaction to the virus, although I do feel weak still.

Wales started their Six Nations campaign with a flourish against France, coming back from an awful first half performance and a 16-0 deficit, to win by a score or more. George North grabbed two tries, including a peach of an interception from 60 yards. This week, they travelled to Rome and made heavy work of defeating Italy, although it was an untested team fielded by Wales.

Have been trying to read a book about Brexit, it seems well written and quite interesting, but I just can’t get into it, can’t get comfortable with my ever present cough disrupting me every time I sit or lie down. May is playing for time until the deadline is up and then we will likely leave with No Deal. The future of the UK is uncertain, and as Jim Morrison wrote, the end is always near…

Rachel is in Liverpool tonight with the Hive. All present except for Andrea, Hooker and Sophie. I miss the Hive, although I don’t miss having to choose between them, I am glad that decision was made long ago and I have stuck with Rachel all these years. They are a very beautiful group of ladies though, as the photos we found the other day from Sophie’s wedding prove without doubt. It’s no wonder I went mental.



Coffee in the pot

Howdy folks. Just a short one this. Have been up since 7pm last night. Voices all night from Jim’s direction. Got so frustrated I threw a teabag at his house (not for the first time). More negative chat on the radio from Benji B this time – prick. Still I don’t care, I have music, food, coffee (thanks to my good friend Anton Robinson), a decent car, a nice house, and in general a better life than The Jiminid. I’m not exactly jealous of Benji B either as he seems like a humourless twat.

Took delivery of my pedalboard earlier this week, spent a good couple of hours putting it together, which involved positioning the pedals, attaching sticky pads to each one and then screwing them into the board, not forgetting to connect them up first in a logical order. Testing revealed that it was only the wah that didn’t work 100% well, so I have bought a new wah as well – a Dunlop Crybaby Multiwah 535Q. Looks and sounds mint!

Got to stay awake at least until 11am which is when my Auntie Kay is coming to visit me. We should be able to sample Anton’s fresh coffee beans hopefully! Then a drive out to the coast I should think. Weather has been cold and clear the last few days.

Went out to take some photos of the Christmas lights in town the other day. Worked out how to use the Low Light Mode on my camera – with a couple of clicks and twists of the buttons, it will take blur-free, high resolution, real colour photos of night scenes. Posted these on Beautiful Cockermouth FB group.

Tom Lawler has asked if I could have a look at a second hand guitar and amp he bought for Millie, that he can’t get to work. I said that he was better off taking it to Billy Bowman’s to get it fixed, but if not she was welcome to borrow one of mine! So either the blue Telecaster or the natural Epiphone ES-339, plus the Fender Champion 40 amp, will be going on long term loan to Wigton for a bit. Good to be able to pass on my interest to a younger generation again!

Countdown to Pea – 3 weeks!

Wah wah, you’ve given me a wah wah

And so it came to pass that the hard case I had bought didn’t fit my guitar. Being a Jaguar / Jagstang case and a Jazzmaster guitar, I was pushing my luck a bit with that one. Thus began a long saga of trying to send the case back, deciding instead to buy a new Jaguar guitar to go in the case, changing my mind and buying a synth as well, attempting to cancel both, taking delivery of the synth, opening the synth, finding out that I couldn’t get the synth to produce any sounds, attempting to return the synth and the hard case*, being told the hard case was past the 14 day return window, deciding to buy a pedalboard instead and maybe a wah pedal as an exchange for the hard case. *This saga is to be continued tomorrow…

Backtracking a bit – we had a lovely time with Simon and Meaghan (+ little Pea). We talked for hours, ate a massive curry from Spice Club, drank non-alcoholic beer, went for a bracing walk at Allonby, tried to find a place to eat in Allonby without much luck (Gincase closed, Allonby Tea Room stank of chip fat), exchanged presents, talked some more and then sent them on their way to Campbeltown in Scotland where they would meet up again with M’s family. They were looking well, a bit apprehensive of their forthcoming responsibilities as parents, but happy and confident as usual. Spoiler alert – we discussed baby names over curry, and out of nowhere, Alexandria became a firm contender. Well, she can’t be Pea all her life… can she?

Christmas Day itself was fairly enjoyable, just chilling with Rachel at home. We didn’t have a lot of presents this year, which was something of a relief. Unfortunately, we made a bit of a mess of cooking the Christmas dinner – having agreed to eat mid afternoon, we didn’t get going until almost 3pm. After searing in a frying pan, the beef went in first, and was merrily cooking away until we realised that the roast potatoes hadn’t been peeled yet – in the end, the meat was delicious if a little cold, the potatoes were underdone, the Yorkshires were tasty, but all the accompanying side dishes (broccoli cheese, carrot and swede mash) were also a bit chilly and the stuffing was a real let down. Not anyone’s fault, although Rachel thought I was blaming her, and she certainly did her best to blame me.

Today we had Josh and Lewis round to visit. They arrived at about 9.30 and made quite a lot of noise until Rachel took them out swimming which gave me a chance to get up and dressed. When they came back at lunchtime they were good as gold. Lewis demanded more food. Josh ate Parma ham and enjoyed it. Then we played Incredibles Monopoly which was great fun, poor Lewis was flying high with loads of property and money in the bank but then the wheels of fortune changed and he was the first to be bankrupted. “I’m never playing this game again” he said, on the brink of tears until we found him another pound to stay in the game! Next up, Jenga, Chess, Guess Who, electric fuzz guitar, and baking cookies. Both boys fell fast asleep on the way home.

Only problem is I am now so stimulated by a bit of company, that I can’t sleep again. Got approximately three and a half hours before waking up and beginning the cycle of half hour sleeps punctuated by insane memory loss and dry mouth. Typically, I missed my appointment with Dr Rigg about my sleeping problems just the other day. Fool. I even went as far as reading up about CBD – cannabis oil – which is meant to help people sleep better and relieve aches and pains, without the hallucinogenic effects of cannabis. The product is pretty expensive though, and does not sell itself to me – I hate the hemp symbol and all the wacky drug propaganda, apparently it tastes foul too. So not for me until they can put it in a pill to swallow.

Apart from that, the same old problems of getting older are beginning to raise themselves more frequently. Pains in my knees and back, soreness under my arms, general lethargy and obesity.  Flea bites again – where have they come from? Bloody Snarf! He is such a cute cat though.

Merry Christmas dudes.

Just finished a week of painting and decorating in our spare room. Mum and Dad did all the work, my role was mainly to make coffee, bring wet cloths to wipe the paint up and try not to get into arguments about where the furniture was going to go. Glad to say that the ceiling and skirting boards are now shiny white, and the majority of the walls are now a tasteful grey colour (Cornflower White), with the feature wall yet to be painted a dark grey (Denim Drift). Whilst we were at it, the builders came back and completed their remaining jobs, i.e. fitting a door handle, replacing a dodgy skirting board, and creating a larger loft access with integrated folding loft ladder. All in all, a great job done, and worth the near £10k spent on the room so far. The fitted wardrobes will be another £5k, thankfully we have all agreed on which company to go with, Cumbrian Kitchen and Bedroom Furniture Ltd of Carlisle.

It has been quite stressful with lots of voices recently. But I have just got on with things and tried to ignore them as best I can.

Last night saw a Sports Personality of the Year awarded to cyclist Geraint Thomas. The Welshman won the Tour de France in the summer, becoming the first Welshman and only third Brit to do so. An awesome achievement and something to remember in years to come. We were lucky enough to see Geraint and the rest of the top cyclists come through Cockermouth on the Tour of Britain in the weeks immediately after the TdF, the stage took them up to Whinlatter. Mum and Dad took some photos and waved my Welsh flag at him!

Had a pizza disaster the other day. Decided to try a new takeaway in town, Madiha’s. The pizza was late, and when I opened the box it was upside down and all the topping had fallen off! The restaurant was pretty good about sending a replacement out, but this was also late and rather cold. The second delivery driver seemed to think that my address was halfway down the next street, so I had to wander out in my socks to go and take the pizza from him. Grrr!

Decided to try to avoid buying any musical equipment this Christmas. I don’t play enough any more to justify buying a new guitar or amp. And I can’t afford it. Gonna have to buy new furniture and a mattress for the spare room this year. Whilst my idea of a snuggle seat for the spare room may rightly be curtailed by lack of space, I think there should be room for a petite sofa in the dining room, if we get rid of the exercise bike. The British Heart Foundation are coming out on Weds to collect it. The Workington store were very friendly on the phone and sounded very grateful to take the bike, much unlike their Whitehaven counterparts who we used last time.

We have a box of tangerines in the house and a raspberry trifle, and that’s about it. Hoping Rach can get to the shops before Simon and Meaghan arrive on Friday.

Merry Christmas everyone!

Finding your way down Walker Street, light in your head but dead on your feet

I have been prompted to write another blog post by my brother-in-law, Graham Chastney. Graham is a technologist and blogger who posts much more frequently than me and has just reached 2000 blog posts for all-time! Mostly on the subject of computer and other digital technologies, but also some quite profound life lessons or explorations of his faith, family and fellwalking hobby.

I’m feeling quite achieved today (as Rach would say). The electricity went off in our street at about 9.30 this morning. I immediately rang Electricity North West to report the fault, and was told that I was the first in my area to report it, which felt like a brownie point had been awarded already! They asked me if anything was burning (no), asked me to check my meter (inconclusive) and said they would send an engineer out to fix the fault immediately – it could take between 1 and 5 hours to fix. They also mentioned that should I or anyone I knew of require medical supplies, or be over the age of 60, then they would run a priority service for getting these people back online. I wasn’t clear whether they meant that they would actually undertake to go and collect medicines or food for the over 60s, but anyway, I went and passed this message on to my elderly neighbour Sue (my other elderly neighbour, Helen, had gone out). Had a good crack with Sue about her bad back, her dog, and her new bathroom. It’s good to talk to your neighbours from time to time, saves a lot of hassle when you have a disagreement if you are on speaking terms in the first place!

Next up, paying the paper bill – I noticed we had been charged again for the Cockermouth Curiosity newsletter, which we cancelled back in August. I rang to complain and the message was duly taken down by the lady in the shop. So I am hopeful that my cheque of £16.35 may include a slight overpayment for next month which will be taken off the bill. I then took the cheque and posted it in the postbox at the top of Walker Street – which means walking up a considerable slope, rather than along the flat to the Crown Street or Wakefield Road postboxes! All good exercise. Shame about the amount of dog poo on the path though…

Then Mum rang to ask me to re-measure up some dimensions in the spare room, for checking against the wardrobe supplier’s given figures. That was fairly straightforward, and yes they did need checking as they were a small amount out.

So , a good day so far.

In other news, Rachel is back from her school trip to Rome. After a lot of worry and stress in planning and booking the trip, it actually went really well for the most part. One student left their passport on the plane on the way there. A seven year old boy with learning difficulties gatecrashed the Pope’s address by running onto the stage! And then Rach, Lynn and a student were sick on the final night. Poor Rachel hates being sick, and to make matters worse she was sick into a bidet, banged her head on the taps and woke up lying in a pool of vomit, still spewing! Could have gone the same way as Jimi Hendrix!!! But, yeah, apart from that it went really well!

Four wins from four for Wales in the Autumn Internationals! And Aston Villa have been scoring goals galore – 17 in five games including a 5-5 draw against Notts Forest! Happy days.

Getting Plastered

Well now… that wasn’t so painful, was it?

Two weeks of building work almost at an end. The room has a new wall, is lined with thermal boards, and is plastered and skimmed. The builders from BHS Property Services have been polite and friendly throughout, no problems to report, they just got on with it. Only things left to do now are fit the radiators, sockets, lights, skirting boards and the loft access which can be done another time. Mum and Dad have been legends and I think are pleased with their investment. I am looking forward to sleeping in the new room and having space to put away my clothes in the new wardrobes, which should be done by February.

Just been in touch with a nice lad from Trevs, about student music groups and their latest output. Apparently there are some cool bands to check out including WTFunk (!) and Autofluorescence. That’s almost as good a name as Audiofidelity, my school band!

A 3-0 victory for the England football team against the USA tonight, Wayne Rooney winning his 120th and final cap as a farewell gesture. He doesn’t break Peter Shilton’s 125-cap record but is second in the all time table ahead of David Beckham. The match was apparently a showcase for new talent including Jadon Sancho, Callum Wilson and Trent Alexander-Arnold. Good to see new players being blooded. Wales Rugby are trying a similar approach against Tonga on Saturday, with 14 changes made from the winning team against Australia. Jonah Holmes comes in for his first cap at fullback.

Oh yeah and Brexit continues to be a massive shambles, Brexit Secretary Dominic Raab resigned today along with Esther McVey and a number of lesser known MPs, in protest at Theresa May’s proposed deal with the EU. My words aren’t really enough to do justice to this complete cock up, but as it happens, I have to go now, I need a poo.


On The Beach

Listening to some cool Trojan Reggae: On The Beach by The Paragons.

Whilst I am not yet a paragon of virtue,  I have been doing a bit better this week, getting out for three walks of two miles or more (round the houses; Cogra Moss with Rachel; and Allonby with Kay). Just ate a massive Chinese from Bamboo to make up for it though. Beef with ginger and pineapple, satay chicken skewers and egg fried rice.

Rach is watching the final of Bake Off, I can’t stand the predictable preening of Paul Hollywood and co, so I am writing this blog instead.

Mum and Dad are coming up on Sunday ready for Mr Barber and the builders on Tuesday. Not looking forward to having the house knocked around but I suppose it will be worth it in the end. Spoke to Granny today, she was watching Athletics and has been enjoying the pleasant weather out in her garden.

One of Rachel’s pupils, Maddie Wylie, has released a music single, “Good Days”. Produced by Soundwave, it is a synth led track with haunting vocals, very unusual, sounds fantastic. She has a lovely voice. Proud to say that I gave Maddie some advice on getting her track listed on Spotify using Record Union distribution service. We were there before she was famous – watch out for a hot new talent!

Oscar’s birthday today, he is four. Still haven’t met the little chap yet. Poor thing he suffers badly from epilepsy and autism as well. Seems pretty cheerful though. Would be nice if Emma let him come to visit us sometime.

Today’s chore was paying the Wheelie Fresh man. Gave him a cheque for £10 so that should cover the next clean as well. He is a nice guy, always very polite and thankful. Makes a difference when customer service includes a kind word and a thank you.