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This is a question Desperate Times

Stranded in a hotel in an African war zone with no internet access for two weeks, I was forced to resort to desperate measures. Possessing only my passport and the clothes I stood up in; and the warning "You can catch it shaking hands with a vicar out there" ringing in my ears, I had to draw my own porn in order to preserve my sanity.

Alas, it all came out looking like Coronation Street's Audrey Roberts, but, as they say, any port in a storm.

What have you done in times of great desperation?

(, Thu 15 Nov 2007, 10:10)
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At Uni, I had shared a house with a couple of other guys and we'd all got on well for the duration of our 4 year courses. By the last term we were just tired. Not just physically, but exhausted from 4 years of work/drinking/cheap food/smoking/dissertations/11am starts/shit houses etc and the novelty had worn off. TO be honest, we were kind of looking forward to starting our careers and at least be able to eat food that contained actual calorific value and items from a price range greater than 20p.

I got home early one afternoon and settled on the knackered old sofa in the lounge. We had a great big clean patch in the middle where one of the girlfriends had pissed her self one night and slept there. Who knew ammonia could clean stuff huh? Anyway.

I heard Mark come home, via the kitchen door at the back (In Leicester, almost universally the front doors usually led to the front room which would have been a bedroom). He rattled round the kitchen and he was unaware of my presence, I could see him reflected in the door glass and he hadnt looked toward it. I watched half interestedly as he rummaged around in the enormous mess of pans, pots, cutlery, empty tins and the general mess that develops when the household agreed that washing up was only done on extremely special occasions. He was holding a tin of value Baked Beans and was looking for a pan. After a few mins he gave up and he wearily sighed and gave in to the situation, he was never going to find anything to put his beans in. Resigned to what he would have to do warm his beans, he opened the tin, and peeled off the label. He removed all the crap off the gas stove and lit a burner. He put the tin on the burner and left it to 'cook'.

Being an engineering student, Mark knew the value of time and motion studies. Not wanting to waste precious time in the kitchen/sewer he prepared dessert. Grabbing a malt fruit loaf from the cupboard, he stumbled instantly upon the next dilemma, no clean knives to spread the margarine with, or cut the loaf. A 'fruitless' search later, and Mark again, sighed and you could almost hear a the little crushing defeat inside of him. With no shame whatsoever, Mark grabbed the loaf, and forcefully dipped the it into the marg, and managed to scoop out a sizeable chunk on to the loaf.

Meanwhile the beans had boiled, a quick whisk with the handle of a (bizarrely clean) spatuala, and with the use of a tea towel to protect from the heat of a 200 degree tin of beans Mark walked in to the lounge. He stopped as he saw me and realised I'd watched the last 10 minutes activity passively. His expression motionless, he sat down next to me, arranged his food on the arm of the sofa and flicked on the cable.
There was no need to comment, we just *knew*. He remained unjudged and unashamed.

Ok not the worst student meal or anything I'm sure, but I've never forgotten the cumulative series of tiny little acts of desperation in that kitchen that day.
(, Fri 16 Nov 2007, 15:39, 2 replies)
Sounds familiar
The novelty wore off for me in my 3rd and final year. As you said, crap houses and crap food.

At least you had cable.
(, Fri 16 Nov 2007, 15:44, closed)
Oh so familiar,

though took to using rulers or fork handles (4 candles?) - the most useless item of cutlery and therefor most likely to be unused to spread my marge.
(, Fri 16 Nov 2007, 16:07, closed)

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