Are you still there?
Yes, I have not posted for a while. There was absolutely no reason to call the police. Look, I'm fine. Don't give me that Ann Robinson look! Why? It makes me go all hot under the collar; I must have a thing for leather. That's a joke, dear reader. She reminds me of a bulldog with lipstick.
So why have I been away? I have been in complete and utter shock. Last Friday eve, a letter was posted to the household of the McLaughlins. It was addressed to one Daniel Jude McLaughlin. It had an ominent glow. Alright, that last bit I did make up but I remind you to suspend your disbelief. Next thing is that you will be going to watch the new Harry Potter film when it comes out and shout, "It's not real! There are no such thing as wizards! Charlatans!" The letter was opened and my disbelief was certainly suspended.
Around 2 weeks ago prior to the letter, I had been wandering around the corridors of St Mary's College, Blackburn. My next lesson was a thing called Xcel (see what they did there? "X"cel instead of "Ex"cel. They are done with the kids, innit bruv?) This is basically for high-achievers and my being a smart-arse, I am selected to sit with other smart-arses; an elitist force, to be honest. The lovely Canadian teacher named Dr Hartley who calls me "Da-a-n" quietly said to me, "I have the perfect thing for you. Cambridge University are looking for Year 12 students around the UK to apply for an English residential."
Now usually, I would dismiss this and laugh in her face. "I am not good enough for Cambridge!" I would proclaim. I would chuckle and try to act all working-class by saying, "Ee, I fancy a pie" to regain my composure. But not that day. And why, dear reader, was it different? I was on a mission and I had to say yes. The application was sent off without an air of confidence at all.
So what has this letter got to do with the back-story? Like you haven't worked it out already! I got bloody accepted onto the residential! 25 places throughout the entire country and they chose me. Wee Dan from humble Oswaldtwistle would be packing his bags and studying English at THE Cambridge University for three days. My mother was in tears, my father chuckling and I, just in total shock. I laughed myself to sleep that night.
Recently, a film funding application was rejected and this film would have boosted myself and my fellow mentalist, Dann Allan onto the film map. I Googled for an appropriate quote%3@
"A rejection is the necessary step towards the pursuit of success."
This blog post is not just me gloating about my predicament. Nah, you want to hear about my shenanigans and tomfoolery. I understand.
I scout the interweb frequently for articles of interest to expand my knowledge of near enough anything - and no, not Wikipedia all the time. I am a sceptic. I dislike - nay - detest the concept of spiritualism (psychics and mediumship). And this led me into a fine mess...
I was on a particular website which featured a chat room for your typical dumb psychics and mediums and a message cropped up. "Would you like me to give you a reading?" Oh dear. Where could this lead to? "Yes" I replied with a sigh of a man fed up with fradulant vultures.
"I can see you now, child. You are alone. You are only 14. Am I correct?"
"Yes." She wasn't. I have to, remember.
"Ah yes. I see you as clear as day. You have blonde hair and you are thin. You look sickly, child. Am I right?"
"Yes." Once again, hit 'n' miss.
"You are good-looking and have no trouble with the ladies but be warned. You are vain. I am correct, yes?"
"Yes." Do I seriously need to explain this to you?!
"And yet, you are depressed. You self-harm and have contemplated suicide. Yes?"
This continued for around 20 minutes where 90% of her guesses were incorrect. It was time for me to own up.
"I must apologise. I am a sceptic and loathe all the techniques you have been using - cold and hot reading. You have been wrong nearly all the time. I'm afraid I've been wasting your time."
An awkward silence ensued; that happens a lot to me.
"No I have been right, child. You are the one who is lying."
Oh dear. To clarify my position here, she said I was an attractive, blonde, thin guy who has many girlfriends. The truth is that I am a Joe Pasquale look-a-like who is truly terrible at relationships. I exited the website rather sharply.
These have been my (mis)adventures so far and I do intend to keep to the mission. The original goal was to keep it until my Theatre Studies examination, which went surprisingly well, and then stop but I am having too much fun. I realise that some things I have not completed as of yet - Dann's picture on the Oscars poster. P.S. You can follow "the mission" at www.misadventuresofabloke.blogspot.com