Dear: Dad

Dear Dad,

You’re an arsehole but, a good one. You are the most suborn man I know. Literally, just the other day I locked you outside and jokingly told you to apologise for something stupid I can’t remember. Instead of just apologising like a normal human, you walked around to the other door and once I locked that one too; you then sat in the porch and refused to apologise or move.

Don’t get me wrong you’ve certainly been dreadful but, you’ve taught me so much. That’s not saying you’re a bad dad, you’re not and I adore you. You have never let me go without. You didn’t have much as a kid, from a poor family and all that but, that didn’t stop you at all. And now, you have this little complex that makes you shower me with everything you couldn’t have. We all have the latest gadgets in the house, all of us, and you’re constantly there to lend an extra £10 that I don’t need.

That’s another thing, you really don’t need to be a safety net, I know you are constantly everyone’s back up. I mean you’ve looked after everyone your whole life. A middle child who has looked after his older sister and younger brother, you walked your sister home from school everyday for God’s sake. Even your parents like in our old house because you helped them move out of the bad side of our city. Still, you’ve done insanely well. You’re great, you really are.

I could not ask for better, I know everyone says that but, I’m being honest. You should realise how great you are to everyone but, I don’t think you ever will. That’s sad really.

I love you, dad.








Book Reality

I’m sick of it.
I prodded the screen of my iPad again, it resting on my chest, the light making my eyes go slightly fuzzy as they adjusted to its new closeness. If the old wives tale about too much TV making your eyes square was true, I would hate to see what mine would look like. I skimmed the page. Eyes rolling back and forth across the words that stood out black on the white background. I’m sick of it. Sick of the way I had been perfectly happy reading this, not brilliantly written but not too shabby, story about some insecure nerdy girl that is hopelessly in love with her best friend. Of course he happens to be smoking hot and interested in her. A girl who is in a total league below his. I hate the way he makes her take off her glasses. I hate the way she is so captivated by his hotness she can’t function without him. I hate the way she thinks she needs him: she doesn’t. She’s beautiful with her glasses on. The black frames make the miniature blue flecks in her grey eyes stand out, the glass making them seem inhumanly large and putting her face slightly out of
proportion. She doesn’t need to wear her hair down, or curl, or straighten it. It suits her the way she always has it. The brunette ponytail cascading down over her left shoulder, the way it flicks slightly upwards at the end and strands begin to fall out of the bobble and hang loosely by her ears. She doesn’t need braces, okay, so her teeth aren’t perfectly straight or white but, her smile is still dazzling in its own right. She doesn’t need him to make her feel beautiful. She needs to make herself realise she always was.
I’m sick of it. But, she won’t. She won’t realise that she’s the most beautiful girl in the world with out him because; he is what every insecure girl needs. He’s perfect. He’s broken, but not so broken that he could do anything bad that couldn’t be resolved within a few pages. He regularly attends the gym and has the body of a God at 17, without him actually putting in much effort. He’s stereotypically handsome with a combination of narcissism and gentleness mixed into his roughed exterior; this will enviably thaw as she gets closer to him. He’ll open up to her and only her. He’ll be perfect but we all know
perfect doesn’t exist.
I’m sick of it.
Just for once, I want to see a story where the insecure girl comes to realise she is drop dead freaking gorgeous and is an amazing person on her own. For once,
I want a realistic guy, a good guy that isn’t going to mess her around ask her to prom. I want her to know she’s not the best at everything and makes stupid mistakes and cries like a normal girl. I want her to eat and put on weight and procrastinate and maybe not get straight A’s or fail but just settle for a C+ because she didn’t do as much revision as she should of but she did a little. I want her to be normal.
I’m sick of it.
I’m sick of all these little fantasies telling us that we have to wait for our Prince Charming to rescue us…I mean what if she wants Princess Charming? What if she is strong and independent and saves Prince/Princess Charming herself. What happens then?
Just for once I want to read something that makes me smile and laugh and cry but, in the end no matter what she’s been through makes me believe she’s going to be okay. She’ll make it. I want to believe this because how am I meant to make it when all the books say I’m doing it wrong? I just want a book to tell me all that isn’t necessary for happiness.
I’m sick of it.

Elliot Writes: How to Survive Retail 101

Hey, Hi, Hello there, just me again…

I’m writing this in work, like literally, no bullshit, its dead as Hell in here and the idea of wasting time makes me nauseous- So, I’m multi-tasking. Although, I’m 100% sure it isn’t debilitating my ability to ask old women if they need assistance, lets keep this on the down low, okay? A little background. I work in retail, in a shoe store where literally everyone is overworked and underpaid – this led up to a build of stress almost killing me. So, I’m not saying I hate retail but, I very severely dislike it to be modest. Even though I  have learned quite a lot of my time trapped in Hell. Sit back, relax and get comfy as I quickly teach you how to survive retail.

Lesson One: Literally NO-ONE wants me be here.

No one, not one of them at all want to be standing around all day bored out of their mind, If they do, they’re lying. Firstly, I’d say over half the retail and service industry in fact is completely comprised of students. Now, I’m not knocking it, I adore my student colleagues. It’s nice to spend copious hours with someone who knows how to have a laugh -especially on stock room shifts, God Damn stock room shifts. At the end of the day, people are there for the dollar, no one cares. Learn to have fun, how to do a little more than small talk and deal with the fact you’re not going to enjoy it. My advice, make friends with the chattier students it does make standing around a little more exciting to say the least.

Lesson Two: Refraining from punching angry old women in the face is harder than expected.

The old women facing me, is almost fossilized and currently screaming at the top of the dust bags she calls lungs because I don’t have a size four sandal. It’s in these moment that I have to remind myself I will get sacked if I shout back – this scene isn’t an unusual one. You know that saying ‘The customer is always right’? Yeah, its bullshit. All you can do is smile and hope she fucks off to shout at someone who is more willing to listen.

Lesson Three: Small talk is a language of its own.

You okay?
Lovely weather we’re having.
I know, beautiful isn’t it – strange for March.
Oh, just wait, it’ll be raining again before you – blah, blah, blah, blah, blah.
The amount of pointless conversation you are forced to endure with passing strangers is positively barbaric but, it is the language of retail. Learn to chat idly with customers about the weather, their kids, how hit it is in the store, anything to make them feel  little more at ease and in turn more likely to buy shit. Get chatty or it gets awkward.

Lesson Four: You like Christmas? Not anymore.

Surviving Christmas in retail is like surviving a family gathering: impossible. Serving 25 customers at once, unpacking a delivery and getting shouted at by a disgruntled customer simultaneously, becomes second nature. Shifts get so much longer, people get increasingly stressed and it gets worse as the season progresses. Oh, and that’s not mentioning the fact you’ll have to listen to the same four songs on repeat, prepare to form a deep hate for Mariah Carey, Wham! and John Lennon.

Ay, as much as I’ll openly moan about retail, I guess its all a necessary evil, I mean people do have to buy stuff after all. One thing I will say is that working in retail did give me confidence. It helped me improve my problem solving, an it did bloody wonders for my patience that’s for sure. So I guess its all not bad.

Until next time,
See you.

– Elliot Kray.












2: Joker

He’s an opportunist. Sliding the witty comments from his pre-written script in at any moment. With a smile, that pulls at the left side of his lip slightly more than the other causing some kind of permanent smirk, he’ll reel out jokes. That isn’t to say he  isn’t funny, of course he is funny. Funny weighs down on his shoulders like an over weight parrot, and still, he wears it like a badge of honour. Artificially white teeth lurk in uniformed lines behind these lips, once they had been wonky and uneven, clustering  inelegantly with a yellowish glow; their new found life just one effect of new found importance. The other being found predominantly on his body, at thirty-two he has found a physical peak. His biceps now strain against the cotton of his shirts, his stomach, washboard, flows smoothly from formed pectoral muscles. “You look good”, people now comment, more than once he’ll catch an interested eye clawing at him. I’ll admit, I fell foul of shallow nature too – he does look GOOD but, I’ve always thought he looked good. Since first meeting his eye, with some difficulty, at twenty seven – he was out of shape, immature and naive but, to me, still good. Not all has changed though. Still, the crater sized dimple in his right cheek is ever present, regardless of if he is supporting a smile or not. Features although, sharper are still the same ones I got to know. His nose pointed, and slightly too small for his other features still sticks out triangular from his face. Misted blue eyes still swim with childlike wonder, the right still drifting slightly askew of the left in its laziness. Hair now styled and always freshly cut, stands slightly at strange angles. It’s straw colouration now more prominent amongst the littering of highlights courtesy of a professional stylist. Makes him look younger she said, makes him appeal to a more youthful audience. He doesn’t care. He never has. He’s just trying to get by like all the rest of us. He smiles, teeth flashing, his jaw squaring, preparing his next witty comment. I wait, patient, For his delivery. Vowels once long, now cut short and primed – like a soft lullaby. I laugh. His shoulders scrunching together as he doubles over, laughing at his own joke; he does that a lot, laugh. Comes with the job. It’s melodic with a harsh edge, sometimes explosive coupled with a gasp of air and I love it. He takes my arm, the cotton of his jumper itching my skin. His grip firm but, soft as he leads me away from the restaurant. We walk, and I laugh, we laugh, for what felt like a forever. Just like old times, when we’d walk aimlessly around, never tiring of each other. We weaved in and out of story telling, pausing to allow him room to create quick puns and quips. Just like old times, we basked in one another’s company; except this time, he kissed me.

I’d known him since sixteen, and we had been instant friends. After that night we dated on and off for a few months. Our love affair was cut short by a job offer he couldn’t refuse, I told him to go. Every few months we try to grab a bite to eat, and laugh, and catch-up, like old times. On occasion, we even share a kiss, should our current lives permit it. I love him dearly, as he does me – sometimes it’s just not meant to be.

Something New

Hello There,

I’m writing A LOT lately, working toward certain goals and the like, you know, moving and shaking except I’ve hit that little part where I have 100 ideas for things other than what I should be writing. So, I’ve decided ultimately, I’m going to give myself a little leeway – writing other things and the like. All convoluted explanations aside basically, I’m going to be introducing a few little bits to the blog, again, I know but, still.

I’ve recently taken to a few literary characters, so my first port of call, not being able to chat mindlessly to anyone I’ve decided to write. I’m going to be writing some sort of ode, to each little character I have acquired a liking for. Juts to keep me on my toes for a bit, let the world turn another blind eye to my mindless fangirling and give me just a little change in what I get to write about each day!

See you soon!
– Elliot.