A weekend in London

Before I got the train down South, I had a bit of time to sort out some Mexico stuff, and do a bit more work on this site.

Having still received no confirmation from the hostel I'd attempted to book at, I decided to call Mexico. This would normally be an expense I'd frown upon. But luckily, the telephone in my room, is on a direct debit to my house mates bank account. This is because he pays our Internet bill, and we could only get broadband through my room. And luckily, he's been pissing me the fuck off lately, so I could quite happily make some long-distance phone calls with no cost, and no guilt. I'm still pissed off he refused the break the contract with the Internet service provider. Fair enough, I can accept that, but he also refused to call on people who agreed to the Internet contract at the beginning of the year, choosing to rather act like a pussy, and add that money onto the amount that we paid. To be able to still live somewhat harmoniously, I reluctantly agreed to this. But I'll be making my money back in long-distance phone calls. And seeing as I will've moved out by the time the next bill comes through, it shouldn't provide any problems. At least not to me.

Anyway, calling Mexico meant I also had to call on my Passport 1 Spanish that I'd recently been examined in. I say that, I really just used the phrase "Habla usted Ingles?", which, according to Google language tools means "do you speak English?" They said 'si', so from there on it was all English. Well worth a years work. And anyway, after a long phone call (bet you wish you didn't piss me off now), and an email, I was able to finally get email confirmation of the reservation. Fuck that was a lot of hassle.

That was Thursday. I wasn't leaving until the last train of the day on Friday night to save money, so Friday afternoon I got on with improving this site, as well as discovering a great new way to clean things. I had some sweets of some kind sitting in my bag. I don't remember what, they'd been sitting there since I bought them in France back in March, on the way back from Spain. Anyway, they suddenly decided to melt and go over everything. Being in a student house, where cleaning tools are somewhat void, I needed something to get these damn sweets off my stuff. Luckily I'd been to the gym that morning (for the eigth day in a row), and found a pair of socks in my bag. Drenched in sweat, these were just like wet wipes. Maybe a poor mans version, but they cleaned my bag as well as any cloth I could've found. And talk about efficiency. Not only do I use water for drinking, but then I recycle it in the form of sweat, and use it for cleaning. Now that is economical!

In terms of the website, I put a referral ad for Firefox on my homepage. Not only did it fill a void space, my homepage is made up mainly of the four colours used in the cycling versions of this ad so it looked a part of the page. And on top of that, it might be something that people actually find useful. I use Mozilla, quite simply because in 95% of situations, it's better that Internet Explorer. And I've made it clear throughout, that I've primarily used Mozilla to test this site. So anyone who's here might want the chance to download Mozilla. If it makes me a few pennies in the process, then even better. It just fit.

On top of this, I finally realised a solution to the problems that I'd been having in implementing search, and implementing the JS-Kit using absolute positioning. I never knew there was a position:static tag. But putting that inside a position:absolute tag, and everything becomes as it should be. Not only did this allow me to introduce the JS-Kit as the guestbook, but it also meant I could get rid of the table that I had used to position the search box, and have that too positioned absolutely, which was a bonus, because this table was occasionally meaning that the search box didn't display correctly. Unfortunatley I had to change the links for every page to the guestbook, and I had to change the code for every page twice for the search box, because the first time, I used a search that was customised to my site. I put in key words such as my name, for the search. Unfortunately, all that meant, was that if you search for something; I used coffee as a test word, the first result that would come up would be 'Williams's coffee shop', or something along those lines, which was really no good to anyone. So now the search is just a regular Google search, rather than a custom search. Though it does still say custom search, which I might take off. Although I gather that doing that might piss off Google somewhat. Anyway, changing all that code was a great fun way to spend the afternoon. Probably on more that 100 pages by the end. Somewhat of a tedious process.

The last change I had time to make before heading off to London, was that all emails sent to jro@jrosworld.com, now get forwarded to my hotmail inbox. Saves me having to check 2 emails. It's not exactly like my jrosworld account has exactly been inundated mind. The only person to send me anything so far, has been me. To test it. Not surprising though I guess seeing as I haven't really made this site at all public yet. Apart from the fact that the occasional person might stumble across it. Somehow. I'll start with publicity some time after I get back from Mexico. Maybe even after I leave to travel. There's not much point publicising a travel website before you've started travelling.

And with that, I turned off my laptop with the intention of no Internet, and no computers until I got back to Hull. I'd been spending so damn long every day staring at a screen, I needed a break. Get away from emails, Facebook, Jro's World. Just get some non-computer time.

The journey down to London was somewhat uneventful. I actually got my tickets delivered to me on the train, which was a service which I was previously unaware was available, but that was about as exciting as it got. I got home late, but I did see my father very briefly once I got back, which was nice. The first time I'd seen any family members since early January.

The next morning, I headed back into the city centre. By this time, I'd really started to notice the differences between Hull and London. Things I'd never picked up on before. Everyone is very damn pretentious in London. Even my local Tesco's here is different to my one in Hull. The shopping aisles are noticably wider. I guess "giving shoppers a more pleasant shopping experience." In Hull, the shops are crammed with as much choice as possible. In London, it's about more than just buying your groceries. It's a load of bollocks really. I'd rather have the choice, but it's telling of the pretentious nature of London, when Tesco's feel that people will shop elsewhere should they not get sufficient space to do their shopping.

And it was the same sitting on the tube going in to London. Everyone sitting there, dolled up, trying to look healthy, probably about fifty different products on display on the faces of every woman, overly priced shoes, jewellery on display. It is all there to give a versade that people are richer, are healthier, are wealthier, are better-looking, than they actually are. A chef who cannot cook will cover his pork with apple sauce. He'll hide that actual taste of the meat behind any other tastes. Where as a good chef, will serve his food openly. That doesn't detract from the fact that the bad chef will probably leave you vomitting with diarrhea. It's the same with all these idiots. If you're unhealthy, then common sense says get to the gym. Eat a better diet. In London, if you're unhealthy, then you cover your face in make-up so no one can see it. I was looking around, seeing all these tubby fat fucks wearing their Armani suits. And here was me, sitting there in Primark's finest. I'll tell you this for nothing, I'd rather be a healthy guy wearing cheap clothes, that one of these puppets in their "dapper". Especially when they hit 40 and die of a heart attack. It's just all very pretentious. Everything is viewed on the surface. It's just that the surface has tried to be covered in money, so it actually looks good. At the end of the day though, a fat cunt in an Armani suit is still a fat cunt. And one that got ripped off on a suit.

This is all almost foreign to me now. Spending so much time in Hull, London really is a far cry. Where's the animal in London? Where's the raw? It's like London is going through reverse evolution. Survival of the fittest has become survival of the fattest. Not literally. The fat ones always die early. That's why there's no old fat people. But in a working sense, where's the animal gone? Where's the testosterone in London got to? It's become dull and fake. I never thought I'd say this when I started at Hull 4 years ago, but if London carries on the way its going, give me Hull any day. It's raw. It's animalistic. London has just become prey.

That was what I felt by looking at people anyway. Not every person admittedly. But the amount of people who you could see would spend an hour getting their hair perfect in the morning, ahead of an hour in the gym. It was worrying.

I met up with Sean at about midday. And later in the afternoon, eventually met with Asya (who was the reason I was down in London). I knew both of them from Canada last year. The rest of the day was spent catching up. I say catching up, I really mean drinking a litre of Sainsbury's basics vodka, with Sainsbury's basics sugar-free lemonade, before going on a pub crawl with a load of people we didn't really know. And not only that, being, by some margin if I remember correctly (if), the most fucked up there. I also had the opportunity to be one of the first people to break the new "no alcohol on trains" law, which I'm quite proud of. One of dozens of pointless laws I probably broke over the weekend when I think back. Fare evasion, urinating in public, I'm sure some kind of public disorder. Why do we have all these stupid laws? No one ever listens to them. And great job Thatcher on privatising every fucking thing. How would privatising monopolised routes of travel, help anyone apart from the companies that can abuse this and charge stupid fares for tickets? Surely common sense could've told her that was a stupid idea. And now we're stuck with companies who profit from abusing peoples right to travel. Fuck that, I'm proud to get away from paying my train fares when I can. And all those stupid signs saying "you'll definitely be caught" or whatever it is they say. I've never been caught. And by avoiding paying half my fare, I probably actually pay what a fair fare should be.

Whilst I'm on the subject of London travel, I have to ask, "what is the actual point of Oyster cards?" On the transport for London website, they give you all this speel about how Oyster will save you money. It will. But why can paper tickets not be sold at those prices? It seems a tad unnecessary to introduce all of this new technology to London, that really was unnecessary. Is the real reason a way of tracking people, for example? With a paper ticket, you can make endless journeys and never be identified. With an Oyster, you can find out exactly what journeys people are making. Getting this bus on Thursday, this train on Friday, this tube on Saturday. It just seems a little suspicious to me that the system was introduced when paper tickets worked fine. Looks more like just another way of monitoring people. As if filming a persons every move on the tube wasn't enough.

Asya Anyway, the night obviously passed very drunkenly. I do have memories of doing things in pubs, that probably were a little obvious and inappropriate. I won't be crude and go into detail, but you can imagine. I'm drunk and beautiful. These things happen. Here's a picture of Asya passed out on the tube. She'll kill me if she ever sees this page. Though she'll probably kill me even more when she realises it's my new Facebook profile picture, so I'll be dead by then anyway.

You can imagine that the next day we weren't exactly running marathons. I think we finally made it out the house by about 2, did very little, before Asya had to leave us again. Easy come, easy go. Being in London, I went to Hyde Park with Sean seeing as it was a nice day. I found it funny he got a phone call as we were there. It was his sister, who's flat we'd stayed in last night, and who'd organised the pub crawl for a group of people she knows. It turns out Sean has a lot of making up to do. I'm not sure why, or for what, but I can imagine that something happened on the pub crawl I don't remember too well. And in this situation, it's usually my fault, so luckily I was heading back to Hull on Monday.

Sunday night, I was watching 'The Apprentice: Why I fired them.' The show of "upcoming" business people vying for the opportunity to work for Alan Sugar. Watching this, it made me realise how much I had changed. I watched all these people talking about how they were the best at making money, how they dreamed about money, how they lived for business. All this kind of crap. It made me think: How much have I changed?

When I started uni nearly 4 years ago at just 19, I was just like these muppets. Couldn't see an inch passed my wallet. My life was destined to be about making more money that anyone else. I'd do that. Then I'd die. That was all that drove me though. I just wanted to make money. And to be completely honest, I would've been damn good at it. But over the passed four years, I have changed. Even at Christmas, money would've been high on my agenda, but I've gone through a phase of changing, and I've realised that money is nothing. Those with money like to think it is. But why have money solely to stockpile it? There will come a point where you earn more than you can spend if you're any kind of a competent business person. So why carry on? Once you're passed that point of being able to provide satisfactorally, why continue earning. Not only do I see it as unnecessary, but I also see it as selfish. The more you have, the less others have. I've never done the maths, but if every person in the worlds personal wealth had a cap on it, of say £20 million, where would that leave us. Does anyone need even that much money? Not at all. But if all that wealth that is stockpiled over the £20 million mark were to be given to those who need it, we'd live in a very different world. Such a figure would be in the hundreds of billions at least. What could be done about global warming, about poverty in Africa, about homeless people here, if such a figure could not be breached. The world would have far fewer problems to worry about, and obviously there would be less of a rich-poor divide. But yet it never happens. The rich are selfish and do not want it. And they essentially govern the governments. How else can you explain such corruption in business?

Mobile phones, for example. A text message costs pretty much zero for a company to send. Yet on Pay as you Go, you will be charged upwards of 10p per message. This sure shows distortions and collusion within the mobile phone market, otherwise, having Vodafone, T-mobile, Orange, O2, Tesco mobile, Virgin mobile, and Three, all competing within the UK, competition would have brought prices down. Why does the competition commission not act? Because as much as we hate to admit it, govenment is corrupt. Even in the UK. It may be more obvious in other countries, but at least that way there is transparency in corruption. Here, corruption is hidden away. But how else do you explain why the competition commission has not intervened in the mobile phone market? Or how about supermarkets. Tesco's apparently make £1 profit, for every £8 spent. If this is not an abuse of a dominant position, then I'd like to see one. Yet there is no intervention.

The fat-cats at the top of these companies have more power than we give them credit for. And obviously, if they object to any cap on wealth, then people starving in Africa must continue.

This is just another example of the failures of capitalism, and how the rich abuse the poor. I almost feel ashamed to have once intended to be one of them. Not only that, it is a failure of democracy. One person, one vote. But it's not, is it. The people we elect don't run this country, they are just the face of it. Those with the wealth to influence the government are the ones we do not vote for. I feel for the people of Zimbabwe about what is happening there currently regarding their elections. But at least this is transparent corruption. At least people know what is going wrong.

Sticking with democracy, people say it's a freedom of choice. Yes, but out of 2. If my vote is to count for anything in the next general election, I vote either labour, or I vote tory. My honest opinion; both Cameron and Brown are joke leaders. Yet this is the choice I have. This is democracy. It's not about policies. It's not about right or wrong. It's simply about image. And this is how people vote. I'm still waiting for the real democratic vote to take place, and that would be where I am given the right to vote about whether I want to be goverened at all. We're born into all these rules of politics, of democracy, or capitalism, and told this is it. You have no choice. But we're given a token vote every few years, just so we feel like we have a choice. If there was a vote, and people actually looked at the facts, who would really vote for uncapped capitalism. It just causes problems. Who would vote to have a choice of Brown or Cameron to run the country. You'd get a better choice at the gorilla enclosure at the zoo. But this is what we're stuck with. If I had my way, we would have anarchy. Back to a true survival of the fittest.

Anyway I got a little sidetracked there. That happens. I got thinking about how much I had changed over the passed few months and I realised, you can really group my life to date into probably 4 or 5 segments. Like, when I was aged around 13 to 17, pissing the world off was great fun. I never did anything worse than your average teenager. Just anything that would entertain you at someone elses expense. I was lazy. I was fat. Probably wasn't a great time to be me looking back. Just a young rebel without a cause. I came out of this phase at about 17. Quit smoking, got my body weight in check, started eating well. I basically got my life back on track after my teenage years. But all my ambition was to be successful within the framework that I knew. I wanted to run the world. And I probably had the ambition, desire and competence to be one of the most successful ever at it was I ended up doing. And that ended up looking like business. But lately, I've began to see all the flaws in the system that we live within, and now I want nothing to do with that. The whole big corporate world no longer appeals to me. Now it just disgusts me. I could probably segment my childhood into 4 or 5 year segments as well. Makes me wonder where I'll be once I hit 27. By then I'll probably be back from travelling. What'll my passion be? The next ten years will most likely be those that shape my life more than any others. If I continue within these 4 or 5 year phases, what I learn on my travels, and what my ambition is once I return, could shape my life more than anything else. And it always amazes me how the smallest decisions snowball to impact you more than you ever thought possible. Though there's never really any way to tell which small decisions are the ones that turn out to be big.

Getting back to how I see my life breaking down: Like I said, I wasn't the most pleasant of teenagers. Very few are though to be quite honest. Things I did when I was 15, I would never consider now. And that was just 7 years ago. What if I had done something at that time, that was more serious than anything I actually did? Say I got a criminal record. If that was the case, my travel plans now, would be permanantly limited. And I was fairly close to getting a record. I got arrested for canabis possession at one point. That was possibly a turning point for me back then, but that is for another time. But what if I'd got a record for that. I never dealt any amount, but I would on occasions have quantities for personal use that may be considered for dealing by the police. Had I got a record, my whole life would've been altered. Altered by something that I gave up by about the age of 18. Experiencing the effects of canabis overuse first-hand, I'm now actively against its use in any quantity. Would it be fair, therefore, if I was forever hindered by something that I did at 15, and now have turned against anyway. I have to say no. But that is the "justice" system that we operate within. I say justice, it's a joke. But that is it.

Then you have to think about prisons. I don't know when prisons were first used. I would guess thousands of years ago. So how can something like this still be appropriate? Especially when you consider, as I have experience, that your attitude to life changes every few years. If you murder someone at age 20 say, you'll probably be in prison until you're 50. Is this right? Would you still be the same person at age 25, still willing to murder? If not, then what is to be gained from remaining in prison. You're no longer a danger to society. You can never bring someone back to life, but nothing is to be gained by removing the freedom of someone who would no longer commit the crime that they are being punished for.

And whilst I'm on the subject of murder, what is the big deal? Murder, quite simply is a part of survival. Every living thing has to kill other living things to survive. Humans live by killing animals and plants for food. Other animals do the same. Even plants fight for light, with those who grow too slow losing out. The only difference in human to human killing, is that human emotion is attached to it. Does a dead person mean anything more or less than a dead pig on a farm? No. Apart from the fact that we can understand the grieving of relatives better than we can of animals. What, therefore is the big deal? We are all responsible daily, for the death of countless living things. Why is a human life being lost such a travesty beyond this. If you think about it, we're pretty much all responsible for the deaths of plenty of humans as well. Using our computers, taking our flights, and being generally inefficient, we have pushed carbon levels to the point that natural disasters are increasing at a scary rate. As I've said before, anyone even reading this message, has used energy unnecessarily, and must shoulder a portion of the blame for the mass of "natural" disasters that now take place. We've indirectly killed thousands this Summer alone. Yet I don't see anyone willing to sit in jail for 30 years for that. We all know the consequences of this continued energy use. But do we do anything about it? No. We sit in front of the TV, gasping at the terrible atrocities and mass of deaths happening around the world. We're collectively responsible for the deaths of millions, but have seemingly learnt nothing from out actions. Yet when someone gets into a fight, and accidentally hits someone in a way that causes instant death, then "oh that man must be punished. Take away his freedom for 30 years and let him get ass-raped in jail. That'll fix him." That was just a thought anyway.

This is probably why I should be kept away from reality TV. I only watched an apprentice spin-off show and I was stuck here talking about everything from mobile phones to killing people. Anyway, on Monday, I was able to see my mum and sister, as well for the first time since January, before getting the last train of the night back up to Hull last night.

This whole weekend in London was alcohol, crap food and no exercise, so this morning I was at the gym again early despite the late night. And with Mexico fast approaching, I think it's time to really get into shape. Not so much because of the hot Mexican beaches (though that is part of the reason), rather, I am already resigned to the fact that I will come back in terrible shape. Four weeks of partying will take its toll. I want to get in great shape before I leave, as a kind of pre-emptive strike. The better shape I am when I fly out, the better I will be when I get back. Almost like a damage limitation exercise. So this evening I was back at the gym again. Today I've done 2 boxercise classes, 1 abs class and 1 circuits class. And I'll be up at 07:30 tomorrow morning to do spinning and another abs class. Then maybe even back in the evening. I've pretty much decided it's going to be 2-a-days until Mexico. Only 2 weeks of it. Not always the gym twice a day. Maybe more the gym in the morning, then run 10 miles in the evening, something along those lines. Whatever it takes to get myself into shape. I think that, combined with a decent diet should do the job. Afterall, after going to the gym regularly for about 4 years now, I strongly believe that the most important part of any exercise program, is the food that you eat. Very simply, if I wanted to turn a muscle-building, weight-gain program into a fat-loss, toning program, I would simply change what I ate. I am a little more advanced than this in my gym life now that I would make additional changes, but for someone who doesn't know what they're doing, you can turn a muscle-gaining workout into a fat-loss workout simply by altering that persons diet. Anyway, up until Mexico, exercise is going to become a more integral part of my life than pretty much anything else. It's not like I have a job to worry about.

When I got back from the gym this morning, it was the first time that I'd turned on my laptop, or been on the Internet, in 3 full days. That has to be some kind of record for me in recent times. I was greeted with 48 emails in my inbox, so that was fun to go through. It was nice though, to not have your life run by your computer. Something I'm looking forward to in Mexico. I'll be leaving my laptop at home, so maybe the occasional trip to an Internet cafe. Other than that I'll be free. One of the emails I did receive incidentally, was from someone that I mentioned in a previous blog that has made me a mock-up of how this site should look, were it made by someone who actually knew what they were doing. I haven't looked at it yet, but if it looks good, it could mean making a lot of changes to this site. Whether I'll have the time and commitment to do so, seeing as this site does what I need it to, even if not in a convetional way, remains to be seen. It could mean a while longer sat in front of the computer. Yay.

Speaking of this site, it is now listed on Yahoo's search engine! Nothing on MSN or Google as yet, but Yahoo has come through for me. Now if you type in 'jrosworld' or something like that (why you would I don't know), then this site comes up. I did also try typing 'Jethro Williams' into Yahoo, but unfortunately, this site wasn't within the first 100 sites listed. Maybe I should put my name about the place a little more. The 25th site listed though, was a now out of use website from the American football team I played for, showing the roster page from a few years ago. So at least I'm there in some capacity.

I've been writing for too long now. This was only a weekend in London, and I've barely even mentioned London. One more thing that is getting to me right now though, is back to my housemates. They're pissing me off right now. We have 2 draining racks next to our kitchen sink. One is a little bit dirty, one is absolutely disgusting with little bugs and stuff living underneath it. That doesn't really bother me. The more germs you're exposed to, the stronger your immune system will become. I use both racks indiscriminently. But what is pissing me off, is that they keep on moving my stuff to the dirty rack, so they can solely use the clean one. Even if they aren't doing the dishes, they'll still move my things. I don't know why they've started this. We've been living together since September without it ever happening before. And any time I quiz them about it, they come up with some bullshit excuse. (They're fucking each other by the way. They don't think that anyone else knows, and they're really weird and secretive. Probably because they're embaressed about each other. I would be if I was fucking either of them. But that's why I'm referring to them together. They pretty much come together (no pun intended)) Anyway, for the rest of the day, I'm going to see if they persist in moving my stuff to the dirty rack. Just because I'm less uptight than they are, that doesn't mean I'm going to let them have the good rack. They can clean the dirty one if it bothers them that much. Anyway, I'm thinking, with 5 days left until I move out, if they continue to piss me off, what a perfect time to play a load of unnecessary, but funny pranks on them. Nothing that's going to kill them, but fun stuff. Cumming in their milk and watching them drink it, putting turbo-lax in their tea. Fun things like that. Not something I'd normally do, but they're winding me up so much with this that long distance phone calls are no longer enough. They're kind of on probabtion right now. If they stop being assholes, and stop moving my stuff, then I'll let them off. If they don't, then I'll be having a world of fun at their expense. It might actually make an interesting blog to write. Next time I write something, they may be feeling the wrath of the joke shop and the chemist. They may have got away with it. Just. We'll have to see where my stuff moves to from here. I'm kinda hoping that they fuck this up so I can have some fun. It could be play time.

Right, I think I've written more than was really necessary here. And with the gym seemingly forever looming, not that I'm complaining, it's time to cut this off. Maybe next time I write something, it could be to the noise of diarrhea and itching powder in the shampoo. Maybe.

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