Tuesday, May 30, 2006

A day off

Thank you for your appreciation of Musical Monday, “the craze that isn’t quite sweeping the blogosphere”. And a particular thank you to anyone who played along themselves... I really do enjoy listening to the music you choose, especially when its music that I didn’t know. And I would have responded to all of the comments individually, if I hadn’t been working the entire fucking Bank Holiday, to achieve my project deadline... in fact, my babies had to come to a meeting with me yesterday, which luckily enough was in a work associate’s house. We got there at 10 and left at gone 6 in the evening, but they were absolute angels all day and I was incredibly proud of them. I love them so much...

Anyway, today I’m taking a well-earned day off and going shopping at Fat Face to buy some new t-shirts for this joke of a summer. Oh, and some beady things, no doubt. Have a look at the site, they have some lovely stuff. I’ve just had to stock up on some new jeans too (Levi’s, of course... 507’s, actually) as all my jeans end up going on the knees eventually. I can’t think why...

Tonight it’s a few drinks and some dinner with PTFE. She’s worrying me a little... lots of sighing and meaningful looks, but I guess I’m just going to take things as they come. Anyway, I think the “L” she’s in might be a four letter word, but it ends in a consonant. Easily confused all too often, but I’ve been around the block too many times. Orgasms can cloud one’s judgement.

Wish me luck with my shopping, because I have a feeling it’ll play a part come Thursday. Oh, and I added a Flickr link to my sidebar for anyone who wants some easily-accessible reminders of what an incredible thing Os has achieved. The more I think about it, the more awe-inspiring it becomes.

Monday, May 29, 2006

Musical Monday

I guess that was the weekend, then. God, they go quickly... although I managed to get through it without any kind of Talk becoming an issue. Actually, that's not strictly true... after watching The DaVinci Code at the cinema on Saturday night we spent the next few hours doing what PTFE does best. Then a few hours sleep before waking up on Sunday morning and resuming where we left off. At some point, I ran for a few miles and then came back, showered and - you've guessed it - went back to bed. After which, finally exhausted, I lay back on the pillow and tried to summon up enough energy to breathe.

PTFE - "Have you got something to say to me?"

Me - "I don't know,. Have I?"

PTFE - "Yes, I think you have."

Me - "Well... I'm not sure that I should"

PTFE - "Don't be silly. Say what you want to say."

Me - "(Sighing...) Okay. I'll have a strong coffee and two slices of jam toast. Thanks darling."

To be honest, I had no idea what she was going on about, or if I did I'd rather not even acknowledge that the thought process took place. All I know is that she sent me a text this afternoon saying "Thank you. All fifteen times." I'll admit that it made me smile, but then it would. Wouldn't it?

Musical Monday

Another band from the south west of England, faithless are incredibly hard to pin down, with a wide range of musical styles but falling, perhaps, within the trip-hop genre like their friends and neighbours Massive Attack and Portishead. Their “open door” policy has encouraged many to contribute to their recording success, but the band has only three core members, each interesting in their own right.

Maxi Jazz – the live frontman, a rapping Buddhist with an astonishingly eloquent, poetic style all his own. His deeply held philosophical convictions lend Faithless an intellectual profundity rarely found in the dance arena.
Sister Bliss – the band’s musical engine, a classically trained pianist also renowned as the world’s leading female DJ.
Rollo Armstrong – the band’s instigator and producer, and the co-producer for his younger sister Dido as well mixing tracks for such stellar artists as U2 and Bjork. Head of the Cheeky record label, he can neither play nor dance and so chooses not to join the band when they play live.

I could have chosen any number of track and styles for today’s MM post, but this one, the title track from the album Reverence, is a favourite. Hopefully you’ll like it too.

Want to play? Just stick this in your sidebar, but change ALL the brackets to the pointy ones first:
(a href="http://wdkylondon.blogspot.com/2006/03/musical-monday.html" target="_blank")(img src="http://i4.photobucket.com/albums/y123/LightestTouch/musicalmonday.jpg" alt="Image hosting by Photobucket" border="0" /)(/a)

Saturday, May 27, 2006

Late nights and porn star sex

Well, it’s not long after 7am here at Chez WDKY, and all is quiet as I sip a strong, hot coffee and smoke my first cigarette of the day. I’ve just thrown the office window wide upon and the air that’s coming in is cold and damp... you’d think it was February, or maybe early March. Certainly not the end of May, and the early throes of summer. There are a lot of good things about this country, but trust me... the weather isn’t one of them.

I’m taking advantage of this early lull before the storm (in more ways than one) to post and visit my Blogroll because no doubt all will be very different soon. O had a friend sleep over last night, and although I let them all stay up nice and late in order to ensure just a little solitude this morning I’m expecting to hear the sounds of young hungry children pretty soon. And they know that it’s hot pancakes with chocolate and maple syrup for breakfast, so I doubt that they’ll opt for much of a lie-in.

I seem to have worked myself to exhaustion this week, with Monday’s deadline on my largest project fast approaching and the usual inconsistency from everyone I’m relying on for data holding me up until the last moment. But I’ve enjoyed the buzz, and now – with my best month behind me and a little work already booked for June – I need to start bringing some work in for July and onwards. This life of the self-employed takes some getting used to... thinking about where the income is going to come from months down the line is unremitting, and it’s clearly the key to surviving or not. And I still have a long way to go before I know that my first year so been a success, the first casualty being our usual summer holiday with our friends in Tenerife.

Despite my aching mind and body, PTFE will be here tonight, full of energy and a stubborn belief that porn-star sex is the cure for... well, everything. As we were talking on the phone last night, and I was attempting to tell her what a week of 18 hour days can do to the soul, she was insistent on telling me what her unmatched oral technique was going to do for my spirit – and, of course, my cock. And (I have to be honest with you) despite my weariness I almost think she might be right. There are certainly worse things than having her soft, hot lips wrapped around you, that’s for sure. I wonder what she intends leaving here this time, though... and whether I can get through the weekend without having any kind of Talk. We shall see.

And, of course, you’ll find out soon enough. In the meantime, enjoy what over here at least is a long weekend. Not for me, of course – guess what I’m doing on Bank Holiday Monday? Yes, I’m working! But I really shouldn’t complain... and thinking about tonight seems to have... perked me up a bit. In fact, I’m suddenly completely perked, if you know what I mean!

Thursday, May 25, 2006

HNT 32 - and 40,000 hits!

Thursday again... crikey. So, that means HNT then. And in celebration of 40,000 hits on this blog (god knows why, but thanks!) I give you... me. In bed, which is the best place for me, apparently ;-)

Come on... climb in. I have something for you.

And yes, my hair's actually greyer than it looks here, and in one or two other HNT photos. It's certainly grey above my ears and a bit at the front, but more "speckled" at the back. And no, Kimmy, I haven't coloured it... cheeky girl! Oh, and I have a few grey pubes too. Couldn't post for HNT without mentioning pubes as they seem to be a constant theme on here these days...

Happy HNT x


Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Premature articulation

Thanks for the comments on my MM post, as always – well, they were more related to the masturbating candle wax, in truth. I must say, though, that on closer inspection it looks like a woman sitting on the face of a man with no legs. And holding him by the, errmm...

Anyway, regardless of erotic candle wax musings, I’ve decided that my life is kind of manic. In fact, it’s probably too manic just at the moment, and I need to start a bit of life spring-cleaning in time for the summer. Because in the summer everything needs to slow down for me, so that I can lay resplendent in the garden and soak up some rays (yes, NML, in the buff if I feel like it). And the thing is, I regard the leaving of PTFE’s make-up bag in my bathroom as a sign that it’s not going to be entirely straightforward. In fact, I telephoned her early this morning as I was on my way to a meeting, and the time of the call was apparently a sign of our growing commitment to each other (which was something of a surprise to me, as I thought it was just indicative of the fact that I was about to be tied up in a meeting for endless hours).

All of this confirms my view that men and women handle emotional commitment in the early stages of a relationship in a completely different way. Women want to articulate it, to savour every syllable and roll it around their tongues before swallowing... and this articulation of feelings can be a bit unnerving if it comes too early. I’m not saying that such communication is unnecessary – I’m just saying that it can be premature. (I was proposed to last year after I’d been seeing the woman in question for two weeks. How premature was that? Needless to say, I ran for my life.)

So, with all of this in mind, I’m off this evening for dinner with the lady in question... a Thai meal in the wilds of Essex. Wish me luck, and if I’m not back for HNT alert the media.

Update: Fear not... I'm back, but I have interesting things to report. And KOW - my man, you were hit #40,000. I shall be thinking of how I can mark the occasion but that's another pint I owe you. At least!

Monday, May 22, 2006

Musical Monday

Well... it's Sunday night/Monday morning, and PTFE has been and gone. Not without consequences, mind you... she seems to have left a make-up bag and some other "essentials" in my bathroom, and I must confess it's causing me some concern. But make-up aside, we had a bit of a night on Saturday (sticking pretty much to the agenda although the movie seemed to fall by the wayside), and as if in testament to the sexual heroics that were taking place something rather strange, and a little bit spooky, happened. As PTFE was articulating her pleasure in the accepted way, she suddenly burst out laughing and said "My god. I don't believe it!"

I followed her gaze, which was directed towards the remnants of a couple of my candles which had pretty much melted away and had formed little rivulets of warm wax on the slate hearth of the fireplace. Strangely, one of the candles had evolved into something that seemed anything but random, and in fact seemed entirely fitting of the occasion. Look at the photo, and make up your own mind - random chance, or an acknowledgement from a higher power that the show was being appreciated (think guy with very full scrotum holding dick)?

Musical Monday this week features my favourite track from one of the great bands of the 70's and 80's - Roxy Music. Bryan Ferry may well have had outlandish dress sense and a slightly foppish hair style (think a kind of new romantic Hugh Grant) but he had a wonderful voice, and produced some amazing songs with RM. Remember Love is The Drug? Anyway, this track is from one of RM's lesser-acclaimed albums, "Manifesto". In fact, it's the title track and it's fucking brilliant. Play it loud!

Saturday, May 20, 2006

Four times just isn't enough

Well, it isn't... four posts a week, I mean. So now it's Saturday morning, somehow, and the furore of the weekend has begun. And, like with most things, there's some good, and there's some bad...

The bad relates in the main to my sister. When we were young, we had an incredible closeness, but I think I may have mentioned previously that I had a period of major drama with my family that centred around the mafia, a substantial amount of money (mine, or at least it was until it happened) and the consequences of people ending up way, way out of their depth. The fall-out from all of this lasted many years, but over the last few months my sister and I have patched things up, slowly but surely, to the point where that closeness that we once shared was beginning to form again.

Now, for reasons that I can't really go into on here, she's gone. A long way away, and for a very long time. I'm really upset, and Mum is completely devestated. And the stupid thing is, she's gone because yet again she seems incapable of making life choices that aren't absolutely fucking ridiculous. In fact, of the three siblings in my family, only one of us appears to have achieved any kind of maturity whatsoever. Sometimes I wonder how a family can be so dysfunctional that I of all people seem like the most "normal" one. It does make you think...

Anyway, back to the weekend, and the good... I have a day with the children (they generally go off at about 5pm on a Saturday, and come back the same time on Sunday. Well, that's aside from football complications) and then PTFE is coming round for dinner. Well, apparently the agenda goes something like this:
  1. Sex
  2. Dinner
  3. Sex
  4. Movie
  5. Sex
  6. Sleep
  7. Sex
Sounds okay, doesn't it? Especially as PTFE has an amazing ability in some areas that makes it feel like I'm going out with a porn star. Mmmmm.... or fucking a porn star, to be more precise.

Oh, and just a quickie about my HNT picture from this week. One of the commenters suggested that amidst all the melting chest hair (there's not really that much, honestly) there lurked a rather unhappy face. I checked, and you know what? She was right. See for yourself.

Thursday, May 18, 2006

HNT 31 - Anniversary time

Well, it's HNT's 1st Anniversary today, and Os asked that we repost our original nekkidness and then post something symbolic of the occasion. I have to say my own first attempt was quite a brave one, and set the tone for my pube fixation in later weeks and months. For those who may have missed it, here's a recap of what I looked like in those halceon days...

As for now, well... slightly more prone to playing on Photoshop, but in essence I seem to have retained whatever physical attributes I had back then. In fact, I function physically rather well for someone fast approaching what other's might call middle age. I call it my sexual peak.

Anyone want to put me to the test?

Some explanatory notes following early comments (!)
  1. I sunbathe in my garden, which is quite secluded. I may wear skimpies, or I may wear... nothing. When out and about or round the pool, I would like to point out that I wear shorts!!!
  2. The effect I used in photoshop for the second photo is slightly weird, but I'm actually not that hairy. Just a slight furriness, really - please refer to first photo for hair-check ;-)


Tuesday, May 16, 2006

A belated word about...

Well, first of all I should say thank you for the Musical Monday comments. To be honest, whilst I read (and appreciated) all of them I just haven’t had time to respond. Work is manic, with the most ridiculous deadlines being imposed on me, and I’ve actually been going out too so I haven’t had much blog-time available this week. In fact, I’m off out for dinner with PTFE in an hour or so, and will visit everyone when I get back and before I go to bed.

Speaking of PTFE, I suppose I should revisit the weekend and the “OH. MY. FUCKING. GOD.” reference on my last post. It’s funny actually, because I’ve revealed enough of my relatively active sex life in the past to indicate that I’m not one who’s easily surprised. Be that as it may, I can honestly say that I’ve never met anyone quite like PTFE before (in a sexual sense, I mean). The sheer joy she seems to feel, her responsiveness, her desire for more, and more, and more... well, as I said, I went to sleep at around 4am on Sunday morning, and I was still smiling when I went to bed the following night. I think she was probably smiling too, because I gave her one or two surprises of my own. And she certainly seemed very appreciative at the time!

The strange thing is, despite this amazing sexual chemistry, and despite the fact that we really do get on well in other respects, I know that PTFE is Miss Right Now, as opposed to Miss Right. I don’t know that it matters, but I can’t help but wonder whether I’m ever destined to stumble across someone in whom I see a long-term, sustainable future. I miss being in love so much sometimes...

Well, that’s the way it is. And for now, instead of dwelling on that particular issue I’m just going to say that I have an idea for Anniversary HNT that meet’s Os’s requirements, so the camera will be out again tomorrow. And I’ll be commenting on all my favourite blogs later... promise. In the meantime, I hope you’ve all had, or are all having, a wonderful Tuesday.

Monday, May 15, 2006

Musical Monday

Sometimes, I get to the end of the weekend and think about what I want to post to my blog, and I’m almost sorry that it’s Monday. Because those are the times that I feel I really want to... share. Saturday night – or to be more precise, Saturday night and Sunday morning – was one of those times, but for now I’m going to just say this.


So here I am, still up having slept for no more than two or three hours last night, but feeling pretty good. Feeling vibrant, in fact, as if my body's been pumped full of high-octane fuel. I've been like this all day, and what am I going to do with this energy? I’m going to tell you about...

Dead Can Dance. Unlike any other band I’ve ever heard, and featuring a woman with one of the greatest voices on earth, Lisa Gerrard. And in case you don’t believe me, here’s what some other people have said...
“This is power. This is delicacy. This is the awesome majesty of an erupting volcano delivered with the subtlety and fragility of a snowflake. We are burned to the bone in that frozen moment of time, the one which passes by so quickly, yet remains framed in an exotic yet undefinable memory.”
“Lisa Gerrard's voice amazes me. It is as if she could vocalize, and master, the intangible. One can see through her voice, beyond word and meaning. Pablo Neruda says, in one of my favorite poems: 'words give glass quality to glass, blood to blood, and life to life itself'. She does it singing.”
“What I have to say is probably not original, but it is heartfelt. To me, Dead Can Dance makes music that goes to the essence of why we are alive, of why God put us on this Earth. Whether they make orchestral music, such as on Aion or Spleen and Ideal, or very basic, primitive music, such as is on Spiritchaser or Into the Labyrinth, each in its own way praises God. It is not music as entertainment-it is music as sustenance.”
What do I say? I say listen to Yulunga and Cantara, from the album Toward The Within, and make up your own mind. And I think I'm going to have to revert to daily posting again.

Saturday, May 13, 2006

Read all about it

Well, I have to tell you that the second half of the week has been rather good. Not that the first half wasn’t good either, but it was good in a kind of unnoticed way. Zooz emailed me yesterday with a mild admonishment that she’d been reading my blog and still didn’t have a clue what I’d been up to so here it is, then...

Wednesday - The first day of sunbathing – just an hour in the garden, but the feeling of warmth on bare skin was fantastic. And in the evening, I met Keda for a drink and some dinner in Soho. Now, Keda really is lovely - beautiful in the most natural way, with long soft curls falling over her shoulders and a smile to make you go weak at the knees - but she also smells absolutely gorgeous (patchouli and something or other) and I went to bed that night with her scent still wafting over me. Although it was all in the mind, I should add, because Keda was no doubt safely tucked up in her hotel. The only downer of the evening was that we got to my favourite restaurant to find it had closed down... I was gutted! (NML, it’s the one we went to – the Vietnamese.)

Thursday - Not too much happened, other than a good day’s work, some more sunbathing, and a drink in the evening with a woman who had rather splendid breasts. They were very pert, not huge but not tiny either, and at one point (I’m not sure how, actually) they seemed to be right under my nose. They didn’t smell of patchouli either, but that’s fine because even if they did they wouldn’t have been Keda’s! Anyway, I suppose it was a kind of date, but I decided afterwards that I wasn’t going to get involved in any complications. See, and old dog can learn new tricks. Even this one.

Friday was notable for two reasons. The first was still more sunbathing in the garden – the joys of working from home know no bounds, it seems, and the ability to turn the phone off and do fuck all for an hour or two is definitely one of them. I also finished a particular piece of work in time for a meeting on Monday, and was pretty pleased with the result. It’s a large project, and this was just the first part of it, but I decided to celebrate with a white chocolate Magnum before going off to see S play football late in the afternoon and then just vegging out in front of the TV in the evening.

So there you have it – lovely, wasn’t it? And tonight I think I’m going to have the pleasure of PTFE, who seems to have invited herself to stay over (not sure how that happened!) although we’re going into the West End for some dinner prior to any carnal gymnastics. Not a bad week, all in all, and aside from having to do some work on Sunday the weekend should be a good one too. Maybe next week there’ll be some angst and drama to report, but for now I can only apologise. Have a great weekend, all of you, and if you can get up to any mischief make sure you don’t let the opportunity escape you.

Thursday, May 11, 2006

HNT 30

248... 249... 250... okay, I was exaggerating slightly - you can knock a couple of hundred off that number and you're closer to the truth. But now I'm older than I was eight days ago, it's important to keep in shape.

So - every morning - I work out for a while, and then run a few miles, hoping to keep the ravages of time at bay just a little while longer. I have no idea whatsoever if it's working or not, but at least I don't have to feel too guilty when I raid the children's chocolate stash.

Anyway, if you don't mind I'm going to get back to it but, as always, Happy HNT x

Okay. 251... 252... 253...


Wednesday, May 10, 2006


I’ve suddenly realised that I measure the passage of my weeks by Musical Mondays and HNTs. Now I’m sure this isn’t healthy, and I’ll admit to being slightly perturbed at the realisation. I think I need to get out more.

Actually, my little world is spinning quite crazily at the moment. I’m slightly too busy work-wise to cope with it all, and if my latest proposal comes off I’m going to have to outsource it as I won’t have the time to do it myself. Mind you, if the timing works out it might just start after I’ve finished the projects I’m working on at the moment, which would be rather lovely. And I have lots to do in the evenings between now and the weekend, which means not enough sleep and a face that’ll end up looking like that of a beagle’s. It won’t be pretty.

All in all, I’ll be lucky to get back to my computer (other than at an all-day meeting tomorrow) before a similar time tomorrow night, so you’re going to have to cope without me. And forgive me for not popping over to comment as regularly as I’d like to, but life seems to be getting in the way at the moment. So – and before I give you my usual pound of flesh on Thursday – here’s something to bring a bit of a smile to your face.


Monday, May 08, 2006

Musical Monday

When Zooz came round for our pre-Birthday dinner, the last thing that I expected was that I would discover some new music that would take my breath away. But discover it I did, and today's Musical Monday is therefore in honour of Zooz and her very fine birthday presents. And I suspect that this won't be the last time a track from one of the CD's she bought me features here, but this one is particuarly lovely.

Okay...I don't know if you've heard of J. Swinscoe's Cinematic Orchestra, because I certainly hadn't, but they were formed in 1999 and are rather excellent proponents of the fusion between jazz and dance that's so popular at the moment. TCO are, it seems, old hands at this game, and my choice for this week is from their second album, Every Day.

The album kicks off with the single "All that you Give", which features a deeply soulful vocal from Fontella Bass (of "Rescue Me" and Art Ensemble of Chicago fame). I think it's rather beautiful, and a little haunting, and I hope you enjoy it as much as I am.

Want to play? Just stick this in your sidebar, but change ALL the brackets to the pointy ones first:
(a href="http://wdkylondon.blogspot.com/2006/03/musical-monday.html" target="_blank")(img src="http://i4.photobucket.com/albums/y123/LightestTouch/musicalmonday.jpg" alt="Image hosting by Photobucket" border="0" /)(/a)

Saturday, May 06, 2006

Age is just a number

So... another birthday’s been and gone. I looked in the mirror just now, and I don’t seem to appear any older. I don’t feel older, either... just a little world-weary, but to coin a phrase... “If you’d only seen what I’ve seen...” Don’t worry, though, I’ve come out the other end and I’m still smiling. Well, grinning, slightly inanely.

Anyway, Zooz came round on the evening before my birthday, as I mentioned she was going to in an earlier post (she say’s hi, incidentally). My sister was going to come too, but she phoned me in the afternoon and said that collagen, botox and a smear test had simply been too much in one day, and she was going to bed. And no, I kid you not... anyway, Zooz came as planned, armed with presents. Not one, not two, not even three... but four CD’s which are going to make my forthcoming Musical Mondays something of a treat for a few weeks. We had some dinner, got stoned, listened to music, and talked – all in all, a very nice pre-birthday indeed. And, I should add, I got one or two lovely surprises from rather special blog-friends. You know who you are, and thank you.

And then, of course, there was The Date. Now, I’m sure you want detail, but I don’t know that I’m going to give you too much. You know what my present was, of course, although I got a bottle of champagne and some hand-made truffles too. And I think it’s fair to say that I rose to the occasion... a number of times, in fact, but then I do function rather well in that department, fortunately. And now, it’s the weekend, which is going to be a quiet one as The Ex is in New York which means that I have the kids until Tuesday. We’re out for dinner tonight with some friends, and it’s the friends who were somewhat involved when I spent the evening putting fake tattoos on the bottom of a VERY famous pop stars mother using a wet tea towel. I think that’s a story for another time, though.

Thank you for the lovely comments on my Birthday HNT, and have a great weekend. I’ll be stopping by over the course of the day to see if you’ve been behaving yourselves.

Thursday, May 04, 2006

HNT 29

They're funny things, Birthdays. When you're young, you want them every day. But as you get older, twelve months seems to be plenty soon enough, doesn't it? Well, this is mine... number 46, if anyone but me is counting. I still seem to be in pretty decent nick, and I'm more than happy with what I've managed to develop between the... ears.

That was ears - pay attention. Anyway, I've just bought myself a present... not one, but two new pairs of jeans - 507's, naturally - and I'm due another present later this evening. So think of me then. ROFL.

And Happy (Birthday) HNT x


Tuesday, May 02, 2006

The date

Hehehe... made you wait, didn’t I?

So... the date. Well, it was relatively straightforward when I think about some past dates of recent times, but we started off with a drink in a rather strange pub in Essex (trust me, you have to understand the significance of “Essex”) and then we went on for a Chinese meal somewhere nearby. It was a nice meal, and we had quite a laugh, talking pretty much non-stop.

After dinner, we went for a bit of a walk, and then sat in the car, talking some more. Oh, and kissing. And then the conversation took an unexpected turn... it went something like this:
“I want to give you a blow job.” (That was her, by the way.)


“I want to give you a blow job.” (At this point she started wrestling with my belt buckle.)

“Well, you can’t. It’s our first date.”

“I give amazing blow jobs – you must be mad. Anyway, you’re getting one on your Birthday.”

“Oh. Okay.”
Then a bit more kissing took place. Followed by me dropping her off and then getting completely lost on the way home (I’ve hinted about my embarrassing sense of direction before). I asked no less than three cab drivers where the fuck I should be going, and ended up getting home at gone 3am. And, needless to say, she (who I shall now call PTFE, which stands for personal trainer from Essex) is coming round for a "bite" on my Birthday.

Speaking of which, and mainly because I have Zooz and my sister coming round for a pre-Birthday dinner tomorrow, I’ve just taken my Birthday HNT photo. And I’ve managed to get my pubes in there again! Or my lack of pubes, to be more accurate. I’d hate to disappoint NML, after all.