Rope-String Guitar

18-05-2014 Sunday

The downside of not having been able to do my homework because of the computer cable is that I had to catch up with all of that work today. The year is coming to an end, teachers are cramming too much work in too little time and you know why!? They are always telling us we should learn to plan our homework, and what are they bad at themselves!? Right, planning stuff. So, the end of the year is near and suddenly they find out that they are actually behind on their schedule and that we will just have to work a little hard these last couple of weeks. They are running behind, so we have to work harder. What’s wrong with this world!?
I went round Mr Bent’s this afternoon. I hadn’t seen him for quite some time and I was stuck on my history homework and if there’s anybody in this whole wide street who knows anything about history it’s Mr Bent. True, Unice knows a lot about history, too, but I was not really interested in the dinosaur days and how she survived the meteor as one of the few species. No, I needed Mr Bent’s knowledge on the Dark Ages. I am ashamed to say that when I was in primary school I thought they called it the dark ages because the sun just didn’t come up for a long time. All those years I wondered what I would have done if I were to wake up one day, looked out of my window and found that the sun wasn’t there anymore.
Mr Bent’s house looked great. His girlfriend, Xemene, has really changed him for the better. He looks healthier and younger, too. His books are organised in a fashionable way, his knickknacks and bric-a-bracs from countries all over the world are put into glass displays and all. He even bought a new couch. Though I kind of miss the old one, even though there was absolutely no way of getting out of it again once you sat down. His new couch looks all modern and even smelled new a little. It did look a little like the old one. Mr Bent wanted the same brownish colour and more or less the same fabric and design. He likes change just as much as I do. It’s okay if you change things, just as long as it looks as much as possible like what it used to be.
He helped me out a lot. Okay, I’ll be honest. Mr Bent did my history homework while I was strumming on an old guitar he had lying about. He said that he once knew how to play and that he got sort of inspired when he heard I was learning to play the guitar. That’s when he started digging up some of his old guitars and this was the best one he could find. He said he had changed the strings just this morning and that it was supposed to be sounding right as rain. I couldn’t help noticing that the strings just sounded and felt like pieces of rope and no matter how I tried (it took me half an hour just to get it tuned properly) I just couldn’t make it sound like a real steel string. After Mr Bent had finished my homework, he picked up the guitar and played a song. It was terrible! We laughed really hard about it and called it a ‘rope-string guitar’. I told him could borrow mine while I was at school should he feel like playing.
For some reason his house – even now it’s clean and organised – feels much more like home than my own house. It’s as if his house just breathes and lives and makes you feel welcome whoever you are. Which is kind of weird, because up till his girlfriend came into his life he hardly ever had any visitors and he was quite the recluse. Xemene often comes to visit him and I believe that sometimes she even brings one or two of her friends. He says that Xemene was the best thing that has ever happened to him, aside from meeting me of course.
Most of my homework is finished, my computer cable is still in one piece and if I have to believe Dad my chances of not dying a virgin have gotten smaller. Mum slapped him when he made that remark, but Dad probably thinks it was worth it. I’m off to bed. Sleep tight everybody. See me tomorrow.  

My Dog Ate My Computer

17-05-2014 Saturday

Sorry I wasn’t here for a couple of days. Normally I don’t like to put the blame on anybody else but me, but this time I am putting the blame on two others. First of all I’m blaming my dog and secondly I’m blaming Dad. Not only am I blaming them I have also found them guilty of all charges. Cheddar is guilty of chewing on the computer cable, and Dad is guilty of being a lousy handyman. Both didn’t get any penalties, because I haven’t got anything to say in this household.
So, Cheddar had chewed through one of my computer cables and Dad, being the handyman he is, said he had fixed the cable. Don’t ask me how he fixed, for all I know he used superglue. I thought my computer was working just fine after Dad had fixed it Wednesday evening. There I was, just typing my own business, when all of a sudden I smelt something weird and it wasn’t one of Cheddar’s infamous farts (not mine either). Something was burning. When I looked at the cable it was smouldering. I pulled the cable out of the socket quickly. The entire cable was hot like hell. Luckily I didn’t burn my hands, because I threw it away in time.
As it lay there in the corner of my room, I waited a couple of minutes to let the cable cool down and then I went downstairs with it. Dad was reading his evening paper when I came into the room and I threw the cable on the table in front of him, and I said,

’ Dad, have you any idea what this is?’

He says in his most innocent voice,

’ Well, from over here it looks like that computer cable I fixed. Why?’

            ‘ It nearly killed me, Dad! It could have killed all of us!’

            ‘ Well, aren’t we lucky you killed it first!’

            ‘ Dad, it nearly set the whole house on fire!’

            ‘ Ah, well, didn’t Mum and I teach you not to play with fire?’

This is where I was getting a little irritated or agitated (what’s the difference? I don’t know).

‘ Dad, this is no time for jokes. This cable nearly caught fire, I nearly burnt my hands, and we could have died in a household accident. All because of you, Dad!’ 

Dad didn’t really seem impressed with my small tantrum.

‘ Well, we wouldn’t want you to die a virgin now, do we? Let’s have a look at that cable.’

Dad picked up the cable, looked at it and said in the same emotionless voice he’d been using the whole time. Steam was coming out of my ears by then and I felt just like that computer cable did about half an hour before that.

‘ I see what the problem is. This cable nearly caught fire. We should get you a new one, because this one isn’t going to work anymore.’

‘ Thanks, Dad. Sherlock Holmes would have been proud of you.’

That’s when I stampeded away, back to my room and I think Dad continued reading his paper. I wouldn’t be surprised if he’d been snickering behind his paper. When will it get through to him that he’s just not as handy as he thinks he is? I bet that he’ll just do the same thing next time Cheddar bites through a cable. Hopefully it’ll be the TV’s cable, because then Dad will maybe understand what I was going through.
As you undoubtedly have figured out, I wasn’t able to use my computer, at least not until today. Today my parents finally found the time to buy a new cable for me. Three days without a computer isn’t that bad, and it was also a good excuse to not do a lot for school. Each time a teacher asked me after my homework, I smiled and said,’ The dog ate my computer.’ I had Mum write a note for me to show the teachers if they didn’t believe me. Each time I showed it to my teachers, my smile turned into a grin; there wasn’t anything they could say or do about it. Thanks Dad!

See me tomorrow