A little bit of bio for anyone that's interested.
I was born in a big fat hospital in Ipswich in, I think, the wee small hours of the morning on my poor mother's birthday in early January 1977. I have no idea whether the seventies were great or not, because to be perfectly honest I was too busy crawling around in the nip, and driving my stylish plastic police car around like a right loon, to possibly notice. I did have a very cool pair of Sgt. Pepper's dungarees, which my mum (bless her heart) had made for me, and I had an uber-stylish mod-esque bowl cut, which looked brilliant on a two-year old. I often wish that I had that haircut now, however, I'm not sure how healthy it would look on a thirty-one year old.
I grew up in Felixstowe, a sleepy seaside town with one thing to say about itself: "I am home to the second largest port in Europe", it said. Apart from that it was, and still is, dull as dishwater, and even then a fair bit duller than that. Imagine some dishwater with a couple of big handfuls of soilage and the contents of a really full hoover in it. Then stir it around a bit. There you go, that's what it's as dull as.
My school years came and went - although they seemed to last for bloody ever at the time - and were a mix of good pupil/bad pupil, the playing of random instruments, not getting my head kicked in if at all possible, and being rather short generally, mixed together with a dash of head injuries (5 in total) and some really horrible cider.
After all that I tried my hand at being an artist for a bit, did a foundation course and a shitload of paintings, although realistically there wasn't an awful lot of direction or reason to what I was doing, when having a bit of it would have been quite useful. I applied to a couple of universities, not really expecting too much, and not unsurprisingly failed to get into my first choice. My second choice was Coventry, so I decided to leave the country. After all, anything's better than Coventry. After a bit of faffing about, sleeping in a tent at my dad's place, and annoying most people that I came into contact with, I hopped on a plane to Tel Aviv and sorted myself out with a job as a volunteer (okay, not a job as such) at a kibbutz down in the Negev desert near Beersheva.
This was about as different as you could get to Felixstowe, which was fantastic. Just what I needed. I met some great people, a few not so great people, a couple of horrid bastards, and the occasional total fucking weirdo. I got my eyebrow pierced, drunk way too much really cheap imported Russian vodka and some gin (yuck!), smoked a decent amount of nice Egyptian pipey stuff , set fire to some big piles of rubbish and wood and plastic chairs (because we could), got incredibly scared due to the bastard Israeli airforce, and got looked at in a very odd way by some Egyptian soldiers at the border station at Rafiah. I visited Jerusalem, Eilat, Galilee, Haifa, Tel Aviv, the Dead Sea, The Red Sea, and I went to Dahab in the Sinai and Cairo (which means Pyramids and Sphinx's baby!) in Egypt. I also did lots of weird jobs including driving tractors (woo!), milking cows (woo!), gardening (with tractors - woo!), and clicking together lots of weird black pipes that are used to heat Olympic swimming pools using solar polar (err... woo).
After Israel I came back to the UK, worked for a bit doing horrible jobs but saving lots of money, so that I could bugger off again as soon as possible. After about nine months of toil I headed off to Perth, Australia and had the most fun year anyone could have. I went the whole way around the country, saw pretty much everything there was to see, did everything there was to do, lived on the beach, camped out most of the time, lived in a house with a treefrog in the toilet, got drunk A LOT, had a face to face encounter with some dolphins, broke down in the middle of nowhere, swam in sumptuous freshwater gorges and underneath beautiful waterfalls... I could go on, but I would be here all bloody day.
Suffice to say it was amazing and I wish I could do it all again, although next time I'll do it with Mrs Timbo, and with my own car. My own car that works properly. And that isn't a home-made bus. And I won't go to Darwin again, cos Darwin was shit.
After travelling I returned to Felixstowe, the fool that I am, and got myself a job as a second chef at a local restaurant. It was a lovely place, run by the nicest people ever, although that's not to say they didn't have their issues, because they did, but it was a great place to work. I stayed there for a couple of years, but eventually got a bit bored of it all (and bored of all the annoying injuries) and really wanted a change, so I managed to drag myself to London one day in every week for a year to do an access course in preparation for an Architecture degree at the Uni of North London - now London Met. It was great to get back into education and it was the perfect time for me as well, because there was no way I could have survived in Felixstowe for much longer without going totally bonkers. And I really wanted to study Architecture. It's almost art, but more structured and defined. Creative but specific; my kind of thing.
So I moved to Whitechapel, East London, got myself a great big house
with one of my fellow students (that then began to fall apart around
our ears, but that's another story...), met the wonderful Mrs Timbo,
fell in love with the wonderful Mrs Timbo, fell out with almost all of
my other housemates (who were a bunch of retarded fuckbags), slowly but
surely ran out of money, and watched helplessly as my degree - which I
was really enjoying - fell horribly by the wayside as a result of my
having to work all of the time just to pay the bills and fees and
credit cards and every other bloody thing under the sun. Mrs Timbo and
I moved into a studio flat in Hackney, which was in actuality a
glorified cardboard box with a boiler and a front door, and we both
proceeded to sink into a horrible listless depression, despite the fact
that it was actually quite a nice cardboard box. Thank christ we had
Mrs Timbo suffers from depression and something called Social Anxiety anyway, so life is pretty hard for her at the best of times, but this was all new territory for me. We struggled on for a bit, through some really horrible times (London is a total shitter when you're broke) and some really amazingly wonderful times (Life is amazing when you're in love), and luckily, when things started to bottom out we were rescued, sort of, by my brother Andrew who suggested that we come and live in Brighton, cos you know, it's by the sea and it's nice, and the people are friendly, and most of all it's NOT LONDON. So we did. He let us stay at his place for a bit while we waited for our new flat to be ready to move in to, then we moved in, and since then we haven't looked back.
I won't say everything's been easy, because it hasn't, but after almost four years here we're practically back on a level playing field again. I'm well on the way to sorting out my money worries once and for all, and Mrs Timbo has started and finished a Multimedia degree and is on the pathway to getting herself a ruddy good job doing something awfully trendy and artistic. She's put in tons of work to get where she is, so I'm incredibly happy for her. I'm currently passing the time working for a massive multinational conglomerate corporation, but shall, in the not too distant future, get myself back to that Architecture degree, and find myself a job that's a little more creative and achieves slightly more than just paying the bills and putting food on the table.
Which is kind of why I have started this website. It's a good way for me to interact with the world outside my immediate environment, and the perfect way for me to get my words, ideas, photos and God knows what else into the Public Domain (which is what they used to call it back in the days when I had an Amiga - remember them?). Whether anyone cares or not is quite another matter, but for me it's a brilliantly practical tool for organising my online existence. Which is where this 'About' page comes in. I often feel like a bit of a cloud, or a drifter, listlessly floating around ambiguously in this huge great interweb/globe of blogs that we all inhabit, so hopefully this page will shed a bit of light on who I am, how I got here, and why I bother getting up in the morning.
Ps. I also went to Disneyland when I was 6, and had my picture taken with Goofy and Donald Duck. Thought I ought to mention that.