Our old dog came to see me in a dream this morning. Maybe he knew it was my birthday! He was sitting next to me on the couch, growling and whining because I had gloves and a hat on. He never liked it when you wore them. I took them off and his eyes were sad and stubborn like they used to be and his snout was wet. Oisín woke me up because I was ‘beeping’, the anxious sound that I make when I’m having bad dreams, but actually I was having a bit of a sleep-cry. I got up to fetch some water and in the kitchen I could hear a single bird from outside having a riotous sing. He’s still going now. It’s 5.45 am. He has no idea how old he is, how old the world is, how long birds have been singing, he’s just doing his thing.
I’m 38 today, I can hardly believe it. I still wanna throw my bonnet over the windmill and rush into the sea at midnight (Pat Phoenix). I remember leaving home at 18 with absolutely no idea how to do anything at all but read books. Things have gotten much better. I’ve been in Manchester 20 years now, I’m the IRA bomb generation. I’ll have a big party in September to celebrate my anniversary I think.
I spent time with my Mum last week and found out my biological Dad made a conscious decision not to see me again quite a short time after I was born. It doesn’t make a big difference, and it started before that because he never came to get us from the hospital when I was born or anything. I’m so much older now than he was when he left that it seems churlish to even think about it but it has hurt me a bit. I’m lucky though because I’ve been so loved my whole life by lots of people. Even now, on occasional days when I’m still in my pyjamas and my anxiety is out of hand and I haven’t been able to pay rent, Oisín will tell me not to worry, I’m a unique handsome genius and Manchester would fall apart without me and why don’t I become a famous singer or something?
I never do a jot of work on my birthday, this is the only thing I’ll write today. Weather permitting, we are getting on our bikes later and cycling out to look at a 1920s street or something, and then having a massive vegetarian feast at Lily’s Indian restaurant, then a pint, and then I’m going to read Times Square Red, Times Square Blue. There’s a cake too, I could smell it baking when I got back from DJing last night. Good morning everyone, happy birthday!