Friday, 19 October 2012

Those little perforations

Today I'm trying to blog on the train from my Android phone and I'm aware that it could be an interesting experience. I'm flying to Dalston (late as usual) to spend a day at the office of my actors co op. One thing I'm finding out already is that my digits are too big for the task in hand. When I got this phone the salesman told me that the keypad would expand to fit the size of my thumbs and that just hasn't happened. He was joking of course but I took him seriously  To my mind there is nothing that technology can't do. Why not have a keypad that reads how big your thumbs are and adjusts the screen accordingly? Maybe NASA should get onto it. They don't seem to have much else to do these days. To make things more challenging I don't have a seat on the train so I'm trying to write standing up. I have to clutch the smartphone with both hands so I can't hold onto the handrail. It feels a bit like an exercise in surfing. We're on a new line but the train still jolts and grumbles, and grudgingly refuses to run smoothly. It's OK because I know that the train will mysteriously empty at Canada Water. Don't ask me why but that always happens. "Why Canada Water?" I often wonder, "Is it really true that the whole of South East London works at Decathlon?" I'm now going into a tunnel and my phone is beeping at me with a very haughty tone. It's telling me that the battery is low and I can't save my work. As a writing challenge this one is certainly different. We've just pulled out of Canada Water station and right on cue, I get my seat.

My trips to the office are infrequent, but twice a month I get the privilege of travelling at rush hour. The peak of the rush has gone and there is a melancholy in the air. I can't quite put my finger on it. Is it tiredness, boredom, depression or just quiet contemplation? Maybe it's all of the above. I like to think that the majority of Londoners on this train are indeed in a state of quiet contemplation but I doubt it. I just hope that some of them are. We've just emerged from the tunnel so it's time to save my work before the smartphone dies. I'm now noticing that most people in the carriage, like me, are welded to their smartphones. I now wonder if, like me too, they are blogging about what's going on. They might be writing about me. Lets not go there.

I'm back on the train. It's five thirty and my battery is now fully charged. I managed to get out of the office early which is a blessing. It was a quiet day today. The only highlight being getting to open a wage slip. It's not only the fact that someone is getting some money, it's also that I love tearing along perforations  There is something really satisfying about the perfect tear of the perforated edge. I thought it was just me but my friend in the office agrees. Perforated edges just scream out 'tear me!' like bubble wrap screams out 'pop me' and the nuclear red button screams out 'push me and destroy the world'. It's a fact of life.

My thumbs are not getting any smaller so I'm going to finish now and go and find some bubble wrap. Think I'll  leave the nuclear red button alone though.

When he's not trying to multitask on public transport Mike Raffone is the co founder of the production company howhow along with his fiancé Grisel Tarifa. They are opening a new performance club The Royal National Theatre of Fools at clf Art Cafe, Peckham on December 4th.  It will be dedicated to the clown, the absurd and the eccentric. His latest radio script is called Instant Karma. It follows the fortunes of Susanna Lewis Parr, a meditation healer with anger issues. For more info go to 

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