The Thousand-pillared Hall.

"What is the real purpose behind the Tooth Fairy, the Easter Bunny and Santa Claus? They seem like greater steps toward faith and imagination, each with a payoff. Like cognitive training exercises. From an early age, you're asked to believe in this guy who brings you toys, real tangible things. Then you're asked to believe in this impossible animal that brings candy, which is a little less tangible. Then, as you start getting your adult teeth you are sold the most impossible of all, a fairy who brings you your country's currency for your tooth."Chuck Palahniuk (pronounced paula-nick, not fa-lunk, like I say)

I have been very weird and emotional this week, because crazy and frightful and ever-accelerating bad things are happening in the world, and I started reading Brave New World, and I sleep backwards, and I have terrible nightmares, and I was a bit lonely, and my old man used a Bob Geldoff song to slag me off, and and I am in a bit of a limbo, and I don't know with any major certainty what I'll be doing after Friday.

But last night me and my band rehearsed, and it was ace, and not a big mess like the other night, which was a big mess, although I am used to my band sounding a big mess, then magically sounding ace the week after, which is why I don't worry about it as much as my managers do.

Luke and Holly dropped by, so we had a little audience for a few songs, and Luke seemed impressed with Martin The Bravecaptain's spooky keyboard sounds on Bankers, and Bravecaptain seemed impressed with his own harmonies on said same song, conducted expertly and a little drunkenly by Mary, so that is all good, and AIDS sounded for a second like somebody else's song, like I was watching another band do their song, and it was the best song ever. Jeres became suddenly drunk at the end, which was fun, because he didn't hit me with a plank of wood and instead took us to Colin and Kirsty's house. Us being Martin The Bravecaptain and me and Jeres. Mary walked off into the night, silhouetted against the filth and the fumes of the Hackney Road, coat billowing with a funny big hat on, like in a movie, and for a second I thought I might never see her again. Then I remembered we were going to see Walk The Line today, although we didn't. Today I watched Starship Troopers and made friends with Oxide And Neutrino, and I have no idea what Mary did. Neutrino thinks that CLONES is a "big tune". I think Oxide And Neutrino invented grime, but I'd probably best not say too much, as Bravecaptain and Jeres have pointed out that my patronage is the kiss of death for a band.

Off the top of my head, then, ten bands I have loved and championed over the years:

Adam And The Ants EMF Carter USM Ikara Colt Menswe@r Oasis The Wu-Tang Clan The Darkness The Eighties Matchbox B-Line Disaster Nirvana

Hmm. I shall not ponder on that any longer. Draw your own conclusions.

Anyway, I had a lovely time at Colin and Kirsty's, and felt sort of grown up, sat about drinking nice booze and eating incredible home made ginger cake and listening to music and talking about how Neo-Labour have sold us all down the river and make up any law they please, and about The Beatles (Colin and me don't like them, Jeres and Martin The Bravecaptain do) and Cliff Richard (everybody loves Cliff Richard, even if he is creepy old Imperialist who I could tell you a story about but won't because the last time I told my audience such a story about a famous man I got scary legal letters). Back in the day on Friday nights, we'd go to places like Fabric and take lots of drugs and feel superhuman for no good reason. We're playing there next week. It might be a little strange for me.

Most of my friends nowadys seem to be couples, I notice. They're all living together in domestic bliss, cuddling at night and sharing toasters and baths and getting ready to squeeze babies out. I haven't been a couple since 2001, and I wasn't really then, because I was selfish self-centred careerist wannabe, and I suppose I still am, which would explain all sorts of things it is probably best not to ponder too hard at this time of the morning, alone in a little flat in Stoke Newington, with Portishead on the stereo.

Anyway. Starshop Troopers was ace, and the news blips in it reminded me of being in America and laughing at Fox "News" in hotel rooms at 5am, and it made me stop fancying Denise Richards. I have swapped my affections for Dina Meyer, who played Dizzy, and reminds me of a young Miranda Richardson, and that lady who played Maid Marion in Maid Marion And Her Merry Men, although I can't quite picture her right now, but she was fit, I am certain.

"An intellectual, says Charles Bukowski, "is a man who says a simple thing in a difficult way; an artist is a man who says a difficult thing in a simple way."

I suppose I am neither.

You people, who read this nonsense, tell me all sorts of crazy things. "Alan Moore," writes Nick Thompson, "is Sir Patrick Moore's nephew. How about that, eh?"

"Did you know," writes Anabelle2003, "that your beloved Jim Bob from Carter USM wrote the Arctic Monkey's album?"

"Seeing that picture of your tribute act," writes Nick Madeira, "I was reminded of looking up nature boy after you put it on your tape. My dad had told me that the guy who had written it had presented the demo to a record company and then disappeared forever, not interested in the royalties. I wanted corroboration, but found this instead..

"He travelled in sandals, camped out below the first L in the Hollywood sign above Los Angeles, studied Oriental mysticism, and cultivated a Christ-like appearance with his shoulder-length hair and beard." Another kindred spirit?"

Perhaps not. I need royalties to pay my rent and buy me love. And I don't fuck with sandals

As for that Carter rumour, having read Jim Bob's excellent autobiographical Carter expose, I know him to be a rumour-inventor of the highest order, and he has an album coming out. Still, it is a good one, and should probably be spread as far as possible. One a person has been told something in a pub, usually it becomes true, and if it is a good story like that, even if denied by both parties, it is too good a story not to want to tell. Such is the nature of the human. Hence "Saddam has WMDs" and "Iran has Nukes" and "if you believe in Jesus you go to heaven."

Ho ho.

I crack me up.

Still, if one considers a sort of vague existentialism, as I have been lately - not realising it was that that I was considering, until Flan mentioned it - perhaps, if one believes that one will go to a heaven, then one will. And if one believes that one will go to a hell, one will. And if one believes that one will crumble to dust, and become the very fabric of life itself, the birds and the rivers and the sod and the sky - one will.

The Hindu saint Ramana Maharishi would ask his students to enquire, "who am I?", forbidding answers like "I am not my brain" and "I am not a flesh sack," and "I am not a fish called Wanda". More importantly, though, those students would me made to ask, "whence am I?"

When pressed, Ramana Maharishi would say, "silence is also conversation."