Saturday, 27 June 2009

“This is John Tracy, in Thunderbird Five…”

A phone call at half ten on Saturday morning: Emma Jennings, says caller ID. A gruff man’s voice says hello. That’s not Emma.

“I’ve called because you’re the last person on the call register. I’ve found Emma’s phone. And her purse. And her handbag. All of her stuff.”

“Wow,” I thought, “this guy could have robbed all of her stuff, but he didn’t. How lucky is Emma?”

He was also staying in the camper vans section, so I said I’d try to ring Tracy and get the stuff back to Emma. I thanked him, and got to work. I couldn’t get through to Tracy, so I called Dem and asked Dem to try to get hold of Emma’s dad’s number – he tried to do this by calling Kelly, who didn’t have it – and we tried to get hold of Emma’s boyfriend’s number too. Pulling all the strings from Manchester, I felt like John Tracy in Thunderbird Five.

Tracy texted: “Emma’s gone to get her stuff now. She’s broken her ankle.”

A broken ankle means spending the next two days holed up in the camper van, and not seeing any bands at all. What a shit Glastonbury story.

UPDATE: It gets worse. Emma gave her fella the flick for not looking after her properly. Shit the bed.

Friday, 26 June 2009

Small talk classes

On Friday night Dunk and I nipped out for a quiet couple of pints in West Didsbury – for a change, we thought, why not – hitting the Met, Silver Apples and The Drawing Room. Outside Silver Apples, we talked about a small talk course that I’d once been on with work. It was supposed to be about influencing and negotiating skills, but that boiled down to pretty much how to do small talk. Small talk needs to show the other person you’re interested in them, but not to the extent that you seem to be prying, they told us. We learned that some subjects – holidays, sport, hobbies – are perfect for small talk because they’re very safe. Others – sex, politics, children – less so.

Dunk seemed very interested. He was just about to ask a question, when a casual acquaintance of mine passed by with his date. We hit up the small talk topics, bits about holidays, bits about football – but I could see his date getting bored. We asked her about her sporting interests, and it turned out she plays rugby. Very exciting. And she became more animated, more involved the more questions we asked her. It was an object lesson.

Ten minutes later they walked away. I looked at Dunk. He looked at me. Kings of small talk! Crown us now!

Thursday, 25 June 2009

She called to find out if Michael Jackson was really dead.

After the stress of preparing for my exam, my late-ish night on Wednesday and my early start to get to Bolton for my teeth, I was zonked after work. I left at three forty, and dashed home to get ready for a real celebration – dinner with Pippa. It was a beautiful day, so I got into my cargo shorts and walked down the river, my old running route. I’ve not been out since the Wythenshawe Five, and before long I was aching to get my Nikes on and get out again. Soon.

On Burton Road I passed a beautiful girl putting on roller skates. Our eyes met, and I couldn’t help but smile. She said “Hi.” I said “Hi,” back.

Pippa and I met in the garden of the Woodstock and had a couple of pints of cider in the sunshine. She was very excited about her holiday, full of enthusiasm for camping cookers and sleeping bags. It was a whole year of Bruce, we realised. I’ve never seen her happier. We talked about the proposed (imposed?) Moss Side move with work, and I felt a lot better for her positive approach.

“I’ll buy us dinner out, if you like,” she said. Jackpot!

We went to Greens on Lapwing Lane – no anti-cargo short prejudices there – and luckily managed to get a table for two. We started with vegetarian black pudding, which was peppery, and really tasty. What was it made of, I wondered, if not from blood. Pippa had mushroom gnocchi, and I had this awesome Moroccan pumpkin and leek stew with savoury scones, it was divine. I’m so glad that Pippa and Bruce are moving to Chorlton, I don’t see enough of her.

Pip’s house is vast. The style is a bit Brookside, but it’s huge. It’s a shame she lives with a wanker, she says. We watched a bit of telly, and fiddled around with her mp3 player. Later on Emma Jennings called

“Hi Em, how are you? How’s Glastonbury?”
“Is Michael Jackson dead?”

Three or four dots

Lucinda has three or four dots that are slightly darker in the green part of her right eye, to the right of the pupil. This much I know because today I had the third part of my root canal procedure. This much I know because I was tilted back further than I had been before, and couldn't watch the clouds through the skylight window, so I concentrated on her eye instead. It's a tiny detail about her, but I like tiny details.

The procedure was really cool - it involved a blowtorch! I could taste the smoke in my mouth as Lu applied a hot tool to the deep part of the filling. I didn't feel a thing. She re-built my tooth, polished and cleaned it. It looks great, I'm really happy with it.

Part way through, Lu said that Pervy had told her that I'd said on this blog post that the last treatment was really painful. We laughed. Well, I tried to - it isn't easy with a mouth full of cotton wool, articulating paper, "suction please" and someone else's fingers.

Afterwards, I gave Persepolis to Lucinda. I hope she enjoys it as much as I did.

Wednesday, 24 June 2009

Do I feel lucky? Do I?

Am I lucky? Consider this:

31st May - My mock mock exam - I choose two questions from six, answering a question on sampling and a question on evaluating a research proposal.

1st June - My real mock exam - There are six questions on offer, of which I have to choose two. The choice includes a question on sampling and a question on evaluating a research proposal. The same questions that I'd answered the day before came up again. Jackpot!

23rd June - Study Leave - I write essay plans for 30 or 40 essays based on the test papers and model answers that came with my learning materials. The last batch of these includes preparing a plan in response to a question on qualitative vs quantitative individual interviews.

24th June (today) - Exam - I opened the exam paper, and was greeted by three very familiar questions. There was a question on sampling, a question on evaluating a research proposal, and a question on qualitative vs quantitative individual interviews. The question on sampling was a little different to the one I'd answered before, but the question on evaluating a research proposal was exactly the same as the one I'd already answered. Twice. And the qualitative vs quantitative individual interviews was exactly the same as the one I'd planned for yesterday

Am I lucky? If I'd chosen different questions for my mock mock, then I might have answered different questions on my real mock, and then different questions on my real exam. I wouldn't have had the luxury of writing an assessed essay that I'd already practiced twice before. That's pretty lucky, right?

Sunday, 21 June 2009

1995, not such a good year for music

I remember 1995 as a year of Supergrass, The Bluetones, Pulp, Radiohead, Oasis and Blur. Watching every number one of that year on music telly made me think again. Robson and Jerome, topped the charts twice. As did the Outhere Brothers. As did two of Michael Jackson’s weakest songs – You Are Not Alone, Earth Song – and the terminally wet Fairground by Simply Red. Bleugh!

My top three number ones of the year are:

1. Gangtsa’s Paradise – Coolio feat LV
2. Some Might Say – Oasis
3. Back For Good – Take That

Farewell rose-tinted specs, the past was suckier than I remember. Fact.

Friday, 19 June 2009


Lindsey from work is going out with Dave Shmoo! Nuts!

Kate, Paulina, Ryan and I went to Blowout with Matt and Chaw to watch She Keeps Bees, who are going to be at the Green Man Festival this year. As we were chatting, Kate pointed out Dave Shmoo. As he came over, Lindsey said "Hello!" to me. We know Dave Shmoo from Sol's and Fuel. Tiny world.

I was half-pissed when they walked in, and ended up ranting about Moss Side to Lindsey. I'm sure she was baffled by my ramblings.

Surprise! You’re moving…!

We were asked to keep the last hour of the working week free for a ‘special team meeting,’ and when I pressed my boss for more information, all she said was, “We’re going on a magical mystery tour.” This didn’t look good.

The call centre weren’t told that much. As the time ticked around towards three, they were asked to collect their things. “We’re going out, and we’re not coming back here.” Eyebrows raised, but suspicious ones with it. We were put into cars, and driven off, not knowing where we were heading. A right turn towards Hulme, a left turn down Old Birley St… until we got to……here.

“This is one of the places we’re looking at for our new office,” said my boss, “what do you think?”

It’s in deepest, darkest Moss Side.

“We’ve got a meeting room here, which we can use for _________…”

Yes, but it’s in deepest, darkest Moss Side.

“…and the call centre and envelope machine can go here…”

Here in deepest, darkest Moss Side?

“…the kitchen has its own dining table…”

That’s lucky, because there’s not really anywhere to eat in deepest, darkest Moss Side.

“…I think it’s a really exciting opportunity.”

I think it’s a big bag of sweaty balls, if I'm being totally honest. It makes no strategic sense at all to move out of the city centre - not when we're reponsible for _________ across the whole of GM. Not when all the other teams in the __________ sector are based in the middle of town. Not when our central government contacts are based by Piccadilly. It's fucking daft.

And personally it stinks too. It's the death knell for lunchtime cultural outings to the museum. No more meeting up with friends for a vegetarian lunch in the Buddhist cafe in the Northern Quarter. No nipping out at lunchtime to visit Waterstone's. No daily contact with the city. What a kick in the balls.

Driving your staff somewhere new, and telling them that's their new office is a particularly shabby way to communicate that news.

Thursday, 18 June 2009

Pea and mint risotto, raspberry meringue, sauvignon blanc

Pippa came round for tea, my second guest (after Dr Jim), and just as welcome. Pea and mint risotto is easy to cook, and less wanky than it sounds. We talked about the ongoing dental work, about last week’s news, about the move, about her arrogant housemate and her planned move to M21. Our grand old chat ended, as always, with me thinking that too long passes between our meetings.

I’d finished Maus, and Pip had finished Perseopolis, so we swapped them. As Pippa’s taxi pulled away, I was already turning pages with a smile.

Kate came home unexpectedly early, which was a nice surprise. I was a bit pissed, but didn’t say anything too stupid, I hope. Matt and Chaw soon arrived too. Chaw said that her friend Kate, who she’s trying to matchmake me with, was coming out to the dogs for Dunk’s birthday. The love-plot thickens, eh?

Wednesday, 17 June 2009

I have seen the light

Every time I go to a conference, I leave it with my faith in my job renewed. Like a pilgrimage to the source of true holiness, it makes me forget the sin and corruption of my godless backwater, and charges up my stocks of zeal. My heart cries out, “Hallelujah!” all the way home. And today I was filled with the spirit.

The second speaker, Peter, was inspirational. It wasn’t that he had a new approach, but that he actually did the things that he was supposed to do. The Department Of _______ insists that all of our work is evidence-led. A Google search for “evidence based practice” yields around 30,400,000 hits. But the amount of people working in my field that understand what that means… I’m not confident it’s very many.

His insistence on using research to inform decision-making should be normal practice, but it’s rare. His insistence on evaluating any research before it is acted on should be normal practice, but it’s rare. Planning the means to gather evidence about a project’s effectiveness before the project begins should be normal practice, but it’s rare.

Peter rubbished an intervention that is very popular in schools across the country.

“Absolutely no evidence that it works, none whatsoever.”

Later, during the Q&A, a member of the audience challenged him:

“We’ve done focus groups, people said they really…”

“Well, that’s great, but it doesn’t show that it works overall, what people say and how they behave aren’t necessarily aligned."

“B-b-but we’ve even rolled it out to the Army garrisons in the area, who say that it’s one of the best things they’ve ever…”

“You’re using the same intervention with soldiers and eleven year-olds?”

The challenger piped down.

And, sitting silently at the side of the room, I buzzed. More evidence means more research, i.e. more of my work being the part of my job that I like the most. Preach! Preach to my already converted heart!

A sneaky hour

I arrived an hour early for my conference at Birkbeck, so I popped around the corner to The British Museum. I didn’t wander far from the North Entrance, up that amazing staircase, into east Asia, and specifically Japan. I saw an embossed box that was five-hundred years old, and shone blue like a beetle’s back. Its simple beauty stunned me.

Downstairs, in room 91, an exhibition of pacific shields took my breath away. They’re bright, dazzling, designed to scare the enemy.

I was most touched by the modern shields. Made using car bodywork, and decorated with the logos of contemporary rugby league teams, they are designed to withstand shotgun fire. Shield and shotgun battles are going on today in the pacific.

Tuesday, 16 June 2009

Let’s go for a green, star performer… again.

We had a little party for Dunk’s birthday. Kate and I made a cake, and iced it red. Gethin and Cara came round, and Al and Ander followed. We lit the barbecue, hooked up Spotify and sat around in the garden chatting. Ander was really impressed with the hairdryer on the barbecue trick. I wish I had the video he took of its fiery glory, sadly I don’t. Matt and Chaw arrived later with booze and meat reinforcements.

- insert cake picture here -

I blame myself, but I wasn’t alone. I started it all, but it was the others who made it get out of hand. I’d cued up some Wu-Tang, remembering how much I’d enjoyed it last night. An eyebrow rose here, a foot tapped there; it was going down quite well. Then Dunk disappeared into the kitchen, and here our troubles began. We had an urban interlude.

Regulate – Warren G
Summertime – DJ Jazzy Jeff and The Fresh Prince
Millionaire – Andre 3000 (feat. Kelis)
Concrete Schoolyard – Jurassic 5
No Digitty – Blackstreet

There was a much better collective mood than the last time we played Cranium. I was with Dunk, Al was with Gethin, leaving Kate, Cara and Ander to make up the third team. Dunk, as birthday boy and king of the day, took responsibility for choosing what colour card should be drawn when a team rolled a purple. And the answer was, invariably, Green.

Green – humdinger
Green – cameo
Green – copycat

It’s the most entertaining card to watch, Dunk reasoned, and he was right. The Al and Geth show was the pick of them. What a brilliant night.

Kudos to Blackwell’s at Manchester University, who ordered and took delivery of Dunk’s birthday gift – Maus – in less than 24 hours. I got a copy for me too, and read it into the night.

Monday, 15 June 2009

I’ll miss Ryan, I won’t miss Ben

Ryan came by on Monday. We listened to Wu-Tang, to Last Shadow Puppets, and to Nine More Lies. Ben has solved the damp in my old room, said Ryan. He’s solved it by painting over it. Right then.

Sunday, 14 June 2009

To be the subject of match-making

Is it a good thing, or a bad thing? Does it put artificial pressure on two people, or is it a good way to meet someone that your friend would recommend for you?

Chaw's friend Kate is lovely. Pretty, intelligent, funny. She likes cycling and growing vegetables. Let's see what happens next!

Saturday, 13 June 2009

The worst ever name for a festival…

…is Mad Ferret. It’s not even a good pun. Kate and I were on a guestlist, so we avoided paying £34 (seriously!) each, and breezed in at around nine. Johnny Walsh is a good guy, very chilled out, very polite and friendly. I can see why he’s a successful promoter. The band that he was hyping, Fraser King, were pretty good. I never thought I’d say it, but they kind of reminded me of Misty’s Big Adventure: not so much in terms of their sound, but in the way that their songs had quite big changes within them – of tempo, of volume, of depth of instrumentation. They reminded me of the things that I liked about The Coral, and Gogol Bordello. I’d go to see them again, but maybe not to Mad Ferret again.

We took a mannequin home with us.

Afterwards, we went to Trof. I was chatting to a tall blonde girl – Leonora? Lenore? Lionella? – who I’d seen around Chorlton a bit. She works in Dulcimer, that was where I recognised her from. I felt really old talking to her – she started at Sheffield uni the year September after I left that fair city, just in 2005. I did some maths, and worked out that she was probably 22. Wow! I felt like a dinosaur. She was born after the Smiths broke up. It turns out she’s Johnny’s ex, although I thought that they were a couple. Was she flirting with me to get at him, I wondered. I went to bed wracked with doubt.

Friday, 12 June 2009

The all-new Horse and Jockey... a bit of a country pub in town. Kate and Dunk both said, independently of each other, that it reminds them of a place back home. It reminded me of a place that I'd visited with Jim in Chester. I didn't mind it at all, but it isn't really my kind of joint. Then again, the Red Lion in Withington isn't really my kind of place, and I love that pub. Go figure.

Free things I got from work today

A cycling helmet
A water bottle
A puncture repair kit
A hi-vis vest
A bell
A multi-tool

Thursday, 11 June 2009

I still don't like Alton Towers, five years on

I met Lucinda for part two of Operation Toothfix. She’d offered me a lift into Bolton last time, gem that she is, so we got the chance to have a bit of a chat on the way. Conversation meandered from the car seat being very reclined, through to Alton Towers and the story of my disastrous visit there with Rigby all that time ago, and naturally on into the realm of relationships with exes. I was very conscious of not wanting to put Lucinda into an awkward position vis-à-vis Liz and I. Luckily we kept our discussion quite general. We talked about how people drift into and out of our lives. Sometimes you can control how that goes and sometimes you can’t.

“Are you seeing anybody at the minute David?”

We had a moment of silence, and then we started to talk about holidays.

My treatment was really fucking painful. A deep clean isn’t pleasant for the patient, and I doubt it’s much fun for the dentist or the nurse. But my teeth felt amazing afterwards. The root canal stuff went pretty well too, Lu said that the lack of discomfort and swelling was a pretty good sign.

No Thornton’s this time round, but I’ve got big plans for next time…

Wednesday, 10 June 2009

"I don't like the green ones."

I bombed down to Tall Trees on my bike to catch the Lions game with Woody and Paul. It was a really fast journey, taking about 18 minutes. I braved the Four Banks junction and crossed the Princess Parkway in lane with the cars. Hairy stuff, but quite straightforward once you get over the nerves. Woody had been off work. The argument with Clare had totally blown over. It makes sense – I didn’t think it was very serious at the time. The Lions spluttered a little, but ended up winning pretty well. BOD was amazing, especially for the Fitzgerald try. What a hero.

Kate found the yellow bag of vegetables, and stepped up to the plate when it came to making something pasta-ish out of them: a rich, dark mushroom sauce, almost meaty in its thickness of flavour, delicious! Dunk pretty much proved that tricolour pasta all tastes the same. We drank Dr Jim’s Scottish ale selection. The winner was gooseberry ale, and the loser pine and spruce.

Tuesday, 9 June 2009

Free food! Twice!

The cute Spanish girl behind the counter in Starbucks gave me a banana when I ordered my latte this morning. If we were cavemen, that would be a kind of flirting.

Dr Jim called. “Hello buddy! I’m in Leeds, and I’m heading to the Trafford Centre on the way home to Chester. Fancy a cup of tea?” Hell yes, of course I do. I explained about the new house, and how to find it, then nipped off early from work to make sure I was home in time.

“I’ve got you some housewarming gifts,” he said, brandishing a pair of bags. Glorious Welsh cheddar! A pork pie! Gourmet olives! Red onion marmalade! Ginger biscuits! Thanks a million Jim, how very generous of you! We popped up to the Quadrant to get some bread, and then had an al-fresco cold tea. We talked through the Lions, their performances so far, our dream teams so far. It was wonderful to see him. He’s been studying like a bastard as well recently, though towards a much more noble end.

I collected my bike from Whalley, and cycled home in the sunshine. I was hoping to run into Ryan, but he was out.

Monday, 8 June 2009

The Thief's Journal

I rode the pilot’s seat (at the very front on the top deck) of the 15 bus to work today. It’s my new route in, and at the time of day that I caught it, the bus seems to head directly into the rising sun. I’ve started to read the Thief’s Journal by Jean Genet, a filthy little horror of a book. I like it.

Kate was working, and Matt and Chaw were out, so I had the whole house to myself. I made mushrooms, tomatoes, and pasta as I listened to some of Kate’s records and then mooched about in my cargo pants. Spotify. Facebook. A bit of studying. And slowly starting to feel less like a visitor and more like a resident. Slowly…

Sunday, 7 June 2009

Oh shit, it's the BNP

So, the BNP have won two seats in the North, one of them in my patch, the North-West. I wish I'd voted. I spent the evening online, one eye on Dimbleby, the other on my twitter feed. (follow me? look right to see how!) Ryan was online too. I'm gonna miss that crazy vegan.

Saturday, 6 June 2009

England vs Argentina

Clare and Paul helped me move house in the morning. Later on, Nick, Kumbi Paul and I went to the England match at Old Trafford. Our seats were so high up in the East Stand that we couldn't see the top half of the goalposts, and couldn't tell if conversions or drop-goals were successful. And there was quite a lot of kicking. The crowd began booing each time ball went to boot. Daft, in that England were fielding a relatively un-tested centre combination, and were never more than a converted try ahead until very close to the end. Bah!

Nick, Kumbi and I went into Chorlton for a couple of pints after the game. Well, more like five pints, as it turned out. Were they more drunk than I was? Well they had started earlier on, during the Lions game.

Friday, 5 June 2009

A drunken punch up at a wedding

In the midst of packing, I got a call from Woody. “Mate…” He was drunk. “…mate, do you want to come to a party?” It was about half-nine. “It’s for Clare’s boss’s daughter’s twenty-first birthday. Free bar.” I put down my boxes and brown tape, and put on my shoes.

If Woody was pissed, then Clare and her colleague Sarah was hammered. “They’ve had two bottles of wine. Each.” said Tom. We set off. However, St John’s church, on Edge Lane, and St John’s parish centre, on High Lane, are not the same place. One is quite a bit further away than the other. And hammered Clare had told us the wrong one. The far one. It was raining. It was cold. The girls were hammered. Tom and I marched ahead, trying to find the place. The girls seemed to stop, and then vanish. They just disappeared.

Calm and rational eyes would have seen the simple truth: we’d set out for the wrong St John’s centre, and the girls, going more slowly, had seen the right one and nipped in away from the rain. Calm and rational eyes. But Woody, drunk, thought Clare, hammered, had ditched us. Deliberately. Uh-oh!

A bit of aggression between them at the (not free, it turned out) bar. Slightly awkward. But not that bad. And then we found a table. Two tables. The girls on one, the boys on the other. Woody was doing that thing where you talk yourself up into being pissed off. “I wouldn’t have done that to her… just out of order… no way…” Sipping my first pint, it all seemed a little silly. Still. We came together. I tried to entertain Sarah as the argument began. Sarah’s quite cute, very indie, very my type. Very attached though. So it goes.

Smoking outside, Tom explained that he was a bit stressed about changing jobs, and that was behind the argument in part. “It’s our first ever argument,” he said with a smile. I’m glad I was there to witness it.

Thursday, 4 June 2009


I got some props for the Fun Things To Do For Free site that I made about a year ago via twitter. Thank you @kayddee

Upwards management, the Danish Gambit

She acknowledged that she’d have to prepare for our meeting at _____, so I finally managed to collar my boss for half an hour this morning. How much influencing and persuading could I manage in that time? How much uphill management? I worked hard, and I worked fast. First, project management. Now, my loyal army of readers will know that I’m a big fan of project management, that flow charts rock my world, that… anyway, I love it. I’d done a lot of work on a new process. How could I make my boss feel like she’d come up with it?

“I’ve had a few ideas, I wondered if you could suggest any ways to improve them?”

It was just like the Danish Gambit, sacrificing a little something to develop the Centre Game. She suggested that we add a box here, rename a process there, next to what I’d suggested, it was virtually identical. And she felt like she’d been at its heart. Brown-nose time, let's get complimenting...

“Wow, that’s something I’d not thought of at all, we should definitely edit that. Good thinking [my boss]!”

...and so on. The interviews. The consultation. Team management. Pow! Pow! Pow! My boss had some great ideas today. At least, she thought they were her ideas.

Wednesday, 3 June 2009

The answer to the question is: "A little better."

I met Woody for a beer in the Woodstock, his new place of work. They were robbed after the Bank Holiday, he told me. Four massive guys with an angle grinder went to work on the safe. Shit. It’s set back from the main road, sure, but its only 400m from a police station. That takes some stones. And how was he coping with the move from a high-pressure target-based call-centre team-leader to slow, afternoon, bar work, sweeping the occasional patio? Pretty well, it seemed. Early doors though, not being stressed takes a bit of time to get used to.

The British Lions romped through the Golden Lions, scoring ten tries to their opponents’ two. Satisfied with their performance, I went to Milner’s for Thai food. Amazing, very peanut-centred! Cally and Ali were there too. Cally’s joining the police. I was dumbstruck. We put on the telly.

After successfully avoiding all that bollucks with Susan Boyle whilst it was going on, I saw her singing for the first time. I was touched, though not for the sappy reasons that many others were touched – my first ever girlfriend put the song I Dreamed A Dream on the tape that she made for me when I went away to University and broke both our hearts. It all came back to me.

“Have I got any better at managing my exes since then?” I wondered in the taxi home. They were playing Nelly and Kelly’s Dilemma. I hate that piece of shit song.

Tuesday, 2 June 2009

Mock results

The e-tutor report says that I've done pretty well with my mock exam. That's filled me with confidence, and made me feel like the hard work I've been doing is worth it. Three weeks until the real thing. I think I'll be okay. Now, let's move house!

"You have received a message from..."

You have received a message from... WHO? Wow, I thought she'd disowned me... oh... it's a group message

Monday, 1 June 2009

Real mock

Bingo! The two questions that I answered yesterday in my mock mock came up today in my real mock. Yeehaw! So I celebrated doing what I hoped was pretty well in the only sane fashion possible, with four pints in the Castlefield sunshine, and then four more indoors. I love Monday night drinking.