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Breather

Some good initial responses to yesterday’s appeal for a life-plan for Chris. The themes developing seem to be charity work and travel. This topic will remain open for the rest of the week. At the end of that time, we will have devised a viable plan by which Chris can live the rest of his life.

I’ve had very limited time to write a blog today, as I was in Bristol unveiling a big piece of artwork to launch the Actionaid child sponsorship campaign I was banging on about before. It was horrible, charity-ruining weather, pissing down with rain, but a few people made it to the event, where dogged folks in Actionaid jackets were doing their best to generate an African atmosphere by hitting bongo drums, eating spicy food, and so on.

Two of the people I met were regular readers of this blog – one a regular poster, one somebody who has never posted before. It was very rewarding to meet both these individuals; my relationship with regular readers has been a purely online one. I am always a bit sceptical that people are reading the jumbled contents of my brain which find their way into this repository of fears/projects/ill-thought-out impressions. But some clearly are. At the turn of May into June, it seems as good a time as any to thank everyone whose participation is keeping this going.

The blog now begins its fourth month in existence and I continue to be very grateful for the people who are following it, even on days like today when I’ve got no time to do anything more than scrawl a few words in the back of a taxi (on the computer, that is, I’m not defacing a taxi – you get fined fifty quid minimum). May was quite a month for me. Among other things, I went to Africa, went for 50 hours without sleep, gave a paper at an academic conference, raised money for my brother, did a Best Man speech at a wedding, saw my favourite band live, went to Barnsley, and recorded a red button feature for the BBC. And was on telly with Charlie Brooker.

In the midst of all this it is sometimes hard to keep records; at times when my life has been this busy I’ve consistently failed to keep a diary in the past. But the pressure of having regular readers forces me to maintain this account of my daily deeds. So thank you for your loyalty and patience, and I hope we can keep this going. Last month we had to employ guest bloggers, but we still survived. June may hold many obstacles in store, but I will keep doing this bloody blog. Hope you will keep reading it. Thanks.  

38 Responses

  1. Sam says:

    First comment hopefully.
    I’d like you to talk about coming back to the Very Late Review please.

  2. Anji says:

    I hope the ‘bloody blog’ is used in a loving way! I can’t beleive it has been 4 months, I would usually have given up something like this by now, not a reflection on it by any means. Usually just because I fear addiction to it. I don’t with this I enjoy reading it and often chuckle and feel at ease that I am not alone in my feelings. I also like to see what colour the new month brings for the dates – I never said I wasn’t odd.

    So thank you Mark for keeping the bloody blog going and for making it so good. Even when you have a million other things going on. It means a lot.

  3. Misha says:

    Has it really been 4 months already?
    Wow.
    In May I turned 18, went on a date, saw comedy and music and had several massive panic attacks.

  4. Emmy says:

    Thank you for embarking on this. Each time I remember I have ten years of this to look forward to I smile a little bit. Go Mark, go!

  5. Zoe says:

    I’ll always be bothered to read for as long as you are bothered to write Mark. You have given me something special to be part of when I really needed it. Thank you.

  6. I LOVE YOU MARK

    I LOVE YOUR BLOG MARK

    I think that’s all, really.

  7. Martin says:

    It’s great to read this. I don’t read it everyday but I try and read it every three or four days and read each days blog in one go. Thanks for the hard work you put in to this!!!

  8. Rachel says:

    Just so know, it’s always a pleasure to read the ‘jumbled contents of your brain’. Thank you for always having something interesting up on here to read, it honestly makes my day. It seems that May was quite a month for several people (less so for me, I only left school which is quite small in comparison to the things that happened to people I know). I sympathise with the whole ‘horrible, charity-ruining weather’ thing – I’ve had to fundraise a lot over the past year and a half and it always just has to be awful weather. I hope it’s all been worth it for you and Actionaid :)

  9. Simon says:

    You’re fab Mark! I always look forward to reading your blog at work. Please keep up the excellent work!

    Also: I HAVE YOUR IPOD*! Muahahaahahaaaa!

    * The one you bought recently for Anna, not the stolen one.

  10. Ivan says:

    It was lovely to meet you today, Mark! Looks like I’m breaking my blog comment duck…it feels funny, might take some getting used to. Your blog has been great so far, I’m now jumping fully on the bandwagon instead of being a mere passive observer. Too late to join the ten year challenge?
    Hope to have a chat with you again some time,
    Ivan xx

  11. lisa brunders says:

    You put in much more effort than the rest of us. And even when you seem to think it’s a disappointing blog I never do.
    I’m always amazed that you manage to find time for all the collating and analysing and even more amazed that you find the inclination for it.
    So a big THANK YOU for all your efforts.
    I can’t remember what I used to look forward to every night.

  12. Zoe Fell says:

    Oh, Mark.
    I teared up a little at that – you’ve clearly caught me at an emotional time.
    It’s been a really lovely four months so far. I have been introduced to some truly brilliant people through your blog and forum, the kind of people who you wish you’d known your whole life over.

    I’d like to take this opportunity to say thank you to you Mark, for choosing to do your TYSIC and share it with us. And thank you to all of you TYSIC-ers for being really ace. I look forward to spending the next 9 years and 6 months with you. Though don’t think you can just shrug me off at the end of the 10 years. I’m a bit like a tick. You’re kind of stuck with me.

    This blog is part of mine and Katie’s daily routine; we’d be (even more) boring without it in our lives. So please keep it up. You don’t want us to become dullards…do you?

    x

  13. Kate B says:

    For as long as you write your blog I will read your blog… Well, assuming I don’t die before you stop writing it :) And thank you for writing it too.

  14. Kathryn says:

    I always look forward to reading your blog in the breaks between trying to study. Well, “study”- doodle and listen to music, mostly. May has been study leave, and from this perspective it seems like I have achieved nothing. Patience, and waiting for results now. But it is good to know that although the future at this point may be very uncertain at least your blog provides something constant in life.

    The only other thing that I did in May was meet Dara O Briain. Not a completely wasted month of my life then.

  15. Joanna says:

    ‘course we’ll keep reading – this is part of a routine now, hence the reason some of us feel the need to stay up until you’ve posted the blog =)

    You lovely man, you.

  16. Sarah says:

    I expect there are quite a few people like me who read your blog (almost) every day but don’t often comment. I always look forward to reading what you have to say, so thank you for continuing to do this. I’ll continue to read, laugh (quietly, if I’m at work) and occasionally comment :-)

  17. Carl says:

    Thank YOU Mark. Of course I’ll (we’ll) keep reading.

    I’ve said this before but unsure if you’ve got it. A recent Twitter exchange between yourself and I resulted in me getting a blog for FourFourTwo. I love that magazine and it is genuinely a dream come true. Thank you.

    I’d really like you to respond to this bit of news. Not so I can have my name in the blog, rather so that you can take a bit of credit for changing someone’s life for the better. You do this everyday for so many of us and I think you deserve the recognition.

    I hope that one day (not in a creepy stalker way) that over the next ten years we get to meet luke the lucky two today. Be it an awkward (on my behalf) hello after a gig or a friendly hello where I get to buy you a drink and natter with you. I don’t care.

    I just want the chance to say thanks in person.

  18. Carl says:

    Oh bum I ruined a tender moment. I meant ‘like’ not ‘luke’. Although, whoever Luke is, I’m sure I’d like to meet him too!

    I’m a fool.

  19. Helen says:

    Thank You for doing this blog. I shall keep reading it every day (when possible) It is part of the routine and I honestly do enjoy reading it a lot. See now I’ve said this a few times and I always read it back and I worry it sounds a bit insincere, but I really do mean it.

    P.S – Often I write comments and read them back and think it was a bit of a stupid/dull/pointless thing to say, so I’m sorry for that. I will write a good, worthwile comment at some point.

  20. Rick Procter says:

    Blimey dood, FIFTY hours – that must be a record, surely? Even by long-show standards. Presume it was something to do with the Senegal trip, was it? I tell ya, it’ll shorten your life y’know…

    And what about this “paper at an academic conference” thing? I thought you were all done with that Cambridge-type stuff. Well, fair play indeed – as I’ve said before, I really don’t know how you manage being quite so darn busy. Hats off dood…

  21. Kate W says:

    Having done this every day for four months (supported by emergency bloggers) is an achievement in itself, but I hope the blog’s also a reminder of all the other things you’ve achieved in that time.

    May was obviously a pretty full-on month, but you’ve done all that, kept Kit alive/fed/changed/happy and still managed to write this every day – hopefully you can look back on that and give yourself the massive amount credit you deserve. You’re giving a lot of us something to look forward to.

  22. Kate W says:

    And yes – would love to hear more about that academic paper. Intriguing stuff.

  23. DeborahF says:

    I usually read it every day, but feel I need to come clean and admit I have just missed 4 whole days in a row. In my defence I went to a beer festival in Erlangen (Bavaria/Germany) over the Bank Holiday weekend and data roaming abroad is £3 a MB (a rip off when you can easily download a MB per minute) so I decided to save my money for schnitzel, sauerkraut and more beer. Sorry for that.

  24. Someone says:

    You must keep going :] I love reading the blog. As people say, you are awesome.
    I’ve read every day (or to be more honest, every day or just past the 24 hour mark of ever day :]) BUT I have to not read it for a week starting tomorrow as my beloved computer goes away. But it’s not my fault and I shall be sad, so it can’t count as me not reading… I’ll just… pretend to read? Instead. Yes that’ll work. I’ll be back.
    Also May sounds like an amazing month for you. Bit of pressure on June now… :].

  25. Phil Addington says:

    Thanks Mark, I have a whole set of links to my favourite writers and have only discovered your blog in the past week. Yours is one of the very best. Usually I read the stuff around 3am., and my wife complains about the little mouse on my Blackberry squeaking away. Might set myself a target of reading all your backlog. That should drive her mad; me too, probably!

  26. LisaD says:

    Did anyone else read this blog today and feel like an utter slacker? Just me then? Excellent…

    No way to say this without sounding like a complete creep, but the one of the proudest moments for me this month was being able to be an emergency blogger while you were off doing amazing things. I’m beyond impressed with you Mr Watson.

  27. Dawn says:

    MARK:-

    If I hadn’t been introduced to your Blog (by the lovely amycool), I wouldn’t have won a copy of your new novel “Eleven”.
    Reading “Eleven” renewed my love of books after a few years of making many excuses not to read “I’m too busy”, “I’m watching tele”, “I’m doing the ironing”, “I’m on Farmville”, etc etc.
    Now every evening I snuggle in my tiny bed and immerse myself into a book thus forgetting all the stresses and strains of the day:-
    So you should be very proud for being responsible for something my four kids have been trying to persuade me to do for years!

    By the way, I think “Eleven” would make a brilliant Drama Series, on the lines of something like “This Life”:) xx

  28. Laura-B says:

    Isn’t going 50 hours without sleep a bit of a breeze for you now??
    x

  29. Laura says:

    Thank you, Mark, you really are a lovely chap to keep all this going and to make us feel like we belong to something genuinely worthwhile. Weirdly, considering the vast majority of us have never met you and would never have the balls to come up and say ‘hello’ should we ever see you, I think we all think the world of you.

    I shall endeavour to write fewer utterly pointless comments so you don’t have quite so many to trawl through; honestly, mine are mostly drivel so won’t be missed. I really do feel quite bad amount the sheer amount of your time my nonsense alone has taken up… Will continue to read religiously, of course. I also think my boyfriend is convinced I’m going to start stalking you. I’m not, don’t worry, but I do spend a lot of time bellowing ‘Mark hasn’t posted yet!’.

  30. Rosanna says:

    I think it’s all been said really but I’ll comment anyway to say great blog – keep up the good work!
    Also, can’t wait to see you in Ashford (where nothing has ever happened before) on Friday!! I know alot of people going and I think everyone is really looking forward to it :)
    xxx

  31. Simone says:

    Laura has said everything I wanted to say, so, I concur with Laura.

  32. Jack Cooper says:

    Hello Mark (and everybody reading this)

    Just heard about this blog on the interview you did for the “Marsha Meets” podcast. Thought i’d check it out and possibly get involved… so here I am doing that very thing.

    I don’t really have anything else to add so I’m going to lurk in the shadows until I feel like I have something worthwhile to contribute.

    Bye!

  33. … and now I feel like a total slacker for not commenting on every one! I have to confess, when I don’t comment it’s usually because I go to write a hideously long comment, then find it makes NO sense whatsoever, so just give up. I felt guilty anyway but now I feel even more so!

    Out of the wallowing and into the positive: this is an amusing and thought-provoking blog; thank you Mark for keeping it up. I read every post (I think I skipped one politically-focused entry because I had no intention of voting and it was a long entry and my brain was already mush … ) and they’re always brilliant. I think the guest bloggers did fantastically well to continue to keep up the high standard of entries too.

    Erm … yeah. I’ve lost my train of thought so shall now shut up.

  34. amycool says:

    I got a small taste of what it would be like having a new baby last night when the dog decided to bark every 10-20 minutes for anything up to 30 minutes at a time. I’ve been a zombie all day. How anyone even manages to survive on so little sleep I do not understand, so writing a blog every day, on top of having a very full career, makes you superman.

    I also agree with Laura. :-)

  35. Anna says:

    Another person here who has read every post (but not always on the day, due to the fact I’m in bed by 10.30pm most nights.)
    I’ll be missing a few days in June though as I’m off to Glastonbury- can I request that you don’t write anything too interesting between the 23rd and 27th?
    Anyway, thank you for the blog, and for making me smile every day. You’re ace.

  36. Rachael says:

    Crikey, I really haven’t done much of anything this month. You put me to shame Mr Watson.

  37. Steph says:

    So we’re beginning our fourth month of existence? I say ‘we’ because you really do make us feel like a (for want of a better word) community. That’s pretty cool.
    Thanks to you also for giving us something to read every day. I don’t quite know if this is a good thing at the moment, considering exam pressure. But I know once it’s all done with I will rejoice and post some glorious comment for you all!
    And everyone go and watch the red button football thingy. I don’t know where it is because I watched it online but just watch it! Loved the football hat ;)

  38. Knox says:

    Charlie Brooker keeps coming up!! It’s like in I <3 Huckabees or something! I'll have to track him down and sort this out once and for all.

    It's brilliant that this blog is about having got this far – I feel a sense of achievement having got to June – I can go to bed now :0)

    So much looking forward to catching up on all the rest – it's like being given the entire boxset of House/Lost/X Files (delete at will – I like all those things, so all equally good) and so having hours and hours of guaranteed joy without ads or week long waits. Thanks for the brilliance, Mark. And definitely do not deface taxis.

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