Andrew Yates  

"I Have Nothing To Do" - extract

...I have nothing to do, itís not all impossible or pointless, but it seems to be veering rather sharply to the pointless side, I mean I have a few months left and there is something to achieve I just donít really know what and if I did know what then would I be doing it and if I was doing it would it be any good and then if it was good then how good would it be and if it wasnít good enough how could I make it better and then to make it better would I just be stalling on something even better and then all the people around me are doing stuff and the people I want to get in contact with are not here and the people who I donít care about are doing their thing but then I donít know if my work compares to theirs in any way and how can you mark this work when itís so diverse and different and personal, and there are so many people sitting around me staring aimlessly at computer screens and what are they thinking, what is that girl with the funny grimace and spiky bleached hair thinking, is she trying to find something on the net, is she trying to load up a disk that simply wonít work, is she thinking about the shopping she did yesterday when she knew full well she didnít have the money, is she trying to remember what her tutor told her to look at because it would help her with dissertation, or she making promises that she canít keep, has she just remembered a friendís birthday, did she think it was wrong to sleep with her best friendís boyfriend, did she slip on her way into the computer room and is now feeling that embarrassment that follows you all the way until you finally vacate the room, does that stretch indicate tiredness and the fact that she hasnít slept properly for 3 days, does her brother Ged keep calling her to remind her that itís motherís day soon and not to forget a card and some flowers, will she ever be free from the cycle she has put herself in, and when is the rent due, who knows? This still doesnít answer my question, this still jangles me on the edge of a very tall building with only sticks and a 10 tonne weight attached to my leg, this still holds back the truth to let the lies do their dirty work, I wonder if Peter Cook ever discussed these things with himself, he was a man of genius and comedic terror, he put the frighteners on people because it, if anything, amused himself, then you fall back into the motion of doing things because you have to, writing things down because you have to, looking over your shoulder because you imagine somebody may be staring at you, catching another bus because there seems to be too many people on that one, even though you may have to wait another ten minutes, itís no problem just the terms and conditions of life. Maybe I should talk to the dinner lady more often, she never really greets me with much of a smile but if you make the effort then benefits are surely the way forward, how many benefits can you draw from a dinner lady? Cheaper food, more food, free snacks, the occasional chat, a free Ďdinner lady hatí who knows, itís yes followed by a swift no, itís a cow being milked whilst needing the toilet and itís a French speaking child not knowing what French means in English, who knows?...