bored of excitement – the griefjunkie blog 

Man With A Printer

Dear Rachel

While not a gifted mathematician, I do know what a Venn diagram is.   A Venn diagram is, of course, a method of expressing differences and similarities between groups with overlapping circles.   Therefore, areas of similarity between groups will show as overlapping areas.  If you draw a Venn diagram of all the people you know who say ‘Carpe Diem’ a lot and all the people you know who you’d secretly like to punch in the face, an interesting thing happens:  it is not a Venn diagram at all, but a simple list.   Incidentally, I’m not a gifted Latin scholar either, but I have managed to work out that ‘Carpe Diem’ means ‘Do what I want’ in Latin.   If you somehow manage to not punch the next person who says ‘Carpe Diem’ at you in the face, you’ll see the truth in this.

Coincidentally, Mike says ‘Carpe Diem’ a great deal.  I may very well be punching him in the face soon – and taking a run up, to demonstrate that at least one of us can do a job properly – because we are rapidly reaching the point at which not to do so would be considered rude.   Mike, for those of you who may be unaware, is the bloke I employ as and when necessary to provide what we like to refer to as our ‘flat media’ – prints primarily, but also the glass place settings you’ll have seen if you’ve ever wandered past one of our stalls.   Mike generously refers to himself as a printer.   My right hand man and the builder of this very website, Gary, sagely refers to him as ’someone with a printer’, which is far more accurate.   Repeat offenders will recall my efforts to variously set fire to and castrate Mike over the course of this year, as a result of his attempts to end sentences announcing his persistent failures with irrelevant sweeteners – ‘I’ve not done what you pay me to do again, but at least you won’t have to pay me’ – and so forth.

I recently asked Mike if he works blindfold, or perhaps operates his printing machinery by shooting at the buttons with a paintball gun.   It’s all become quite pertinent recently as now the Greenwich stall has become a depot for stock heading up the Northern Line to Martin’s new Camden outlet – a situation with presents Mike with a golden opportunity to piss me off twice: once by telling me he hasn’t done the work, and again when I have to go to Martin and tell him that Mike hasn’t done the work.   Anyway.  I was referring specifically to some Pac Man prints Mike had just given me when I questioned his working practices.   As he handed me the prints in their cardboard tubes, I noticed that all of them were covered in black fingerprints.   I also noticed that he had four black fingerprints down his left cheek and a thumbprint by the bridge of his nose, where – try this yourself – he had clapped his hand to his face, presumably while watching this latest farce of his own making unfold.   ‘What the fuck am I supposed to do with this?’ I exclaimed, opening a tube and extracting a print so wet as to be staining everything it touched, and subsequently suggesting that perhaps Mike expected me to pour it to the customer, or offer it on the rocks with a slice of lemon and a bendy fucking straw.    I handed him the prints back, and with a consummate amount of foul language, told him to do them again.

Martin has added some of his own artwork to the selection on display at the Camden branch.    Mike, obviously, is printing this.    I have urged Mike not to balls it up, which is like urging September not to follow August.   Perhaps ten minutes later, Mike appeared at my stall again, his face beaming with glad tidings.   ‘I’ve managed to save the tubes, at least’ he said ‘And I’ve put your mate’s stuff in them’, which was handy, although it was only when I eventually got them to Camden that I remembered that Martin hadn’t in fact sent a note with the original files saying ‘When your printer has finished, please can he put them into cardboard tubes full of black ink to that they are entirely fucked up and unsaleable’.

Twitter: Hey ho.

Facebook: Went down to 117 at one point, but Matthew Titcombe found it while searching for phone chargers in south east London, so we’re back up to 118.

Photards: Top – Greenwich Station looking towards central London.

Middle: These are prints destined to head up to Camden.   They are initialed by me to show that I have checked Mike’s work and that they are printed to a merchantable quality, and not on fire or drawn free hand or I don’t know what.

Lower: Glass place settings, in this case of the Slightly Disturbing tube map.    They are at an excellent height for children to sneeze productively over.


  1. Gill

    Oct 29th, 2010
    6:33 pm

    Um, would it be stating the obvious to suggest that it’s about time you found a new printer…? x

  2. Paul

    Oct 29th, 2010
    11:55 pm

    Not as easy as that. Despite having the mind of a toddler, Mike is cheap and when he actually gets it right, he does really well. If we have a good Christmas, we’ll just buy all the machinery and do it ourselves.

  3. hilary

    Nov 1st, 2010
    12:11 am

    hahahahahahahahahahahahaha. this is one of the best entries yet.

  4. Paul

    Nov 1st, 2010
    2:50 pm

    Thanks. That entry was originally over 4,000 words long, but I had to edit it pretty severely. I get a bit hysterical when I talk about Mike.

  5. Homo intellectus

    Nov 9th, 2010
    12:30 pm

    You gets what you gets ‘faex dura’ mate!

    NB you are advised not to punch me as I weight 110Kg and stand 0.02Km in my socks

  6. Paul

    Nov 9th, 2010
    12:41 pm

    I have no idea what you’re talking about.

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