Hello. I’m Forest Pines. That isn’t the name on my passport, but I have used it around other places on the internet, so I thought I’d use it here too.

This is the new, updated version of the About Page; as K pointed out that it hadn’t been changed since the site first started, and was now hugely out of date. At the time of writing, this blog has been going for three-and-a-bit years. I, myself, have been going for rather longer, so much that I’m starting to get grey-haired. It’s the stress of modern life, I tell you.

K, incidentally, is my girlfriend, my darling, and the person who generally looks after me and makes sure I remember to eat meals, get out of bed in the morning, do the washing up and so on. You might occasionally spot her in photos, if you look carefully. Me and K got together some time after this blog first started, so if you go back in the archives there might be confusing references to exes, or endless moaning about how I was clearly going to be single forever. I’m good at predictions, me.

We live in Bristol, although neither of us were born there, in a little Victorian terrace which (atypically for Bristol) isn’t painted any particularly nice colour, but (very typically for Bristol) has a steep hill between it and every other part of the city. We’re both from Up North originally, although K disputes that I’m actually northern. I sound “too posh”, apparently, and was born far too far south. My argument is that, a few years ago, when sociologists went out and drew the actual North-South Divide on a map, it passed definitively and decisively to the south of my old house, my old school, the places I was born and grew up in, and so on. Admittedly, it ran only about a quarter of a mile to the south, but that’s by-the-by.

I once read something, somewhere, about how to run a successful blog. Post regularly, it said. Choose your theme and stick to it, it said. Well, so much for rules. I started out trying to post every day; it slowly petered out until, by last summer, I was hardly posting at all. Eventually I thought to myself: if I’m going to keep paying to have a website online, I may as well try to stick to some of the original plan; since then I’ve been posting much more regularly than in the past, although still not daily. As for a theme: well, I post pretty much anything that comes into my head. Gigs we’ve been to. Films we’ve seen. Photos I’ve posted on Flickr recently – that’s a regular one. Things I’ve tried to cook – that happens much less now I live with someone who is a much better cook than I ever am. Books I haven’t read – a book review with a slight twist, you could say. Even books I have read, sometimes. People who foretold the future only to get it wrong – which includes me – particularly those who then don’t admit it, or pretend they were right all along, which doesn’t, I’m glad to say, include me. My excuse for being wrong there, incidentally, is that my reasoning was perfectly sound, and when I wrote that I had more chance of being right than anyone else did at the time; but circumstances changed.

This site does have a mascot. It’s called a gruntlebeast. At the time of writing, you can see it up at the top right, but that might change before too long: so here’s what it properly looks like.

A gruntlebeast

A semi-mythical and often partially invisible creature, their name comes from their food. If you feel disgruntled for no reason, that’s probably because some of your gruntles have recently gone missing: chances are, one of these things snuck up to you and ate your missing gruntles while you weren’t looking. If you hear their well-known hunting cry, “Arrg kxrrt!”, beware.

I’m told there’s a luxury hotel also called Forest Pines. There is absolutely no link or connection between me and it. It’s got a nice name, though. I’m also told – by a friend who went to an office Christmas party there a while back – that their event catering can be truly dire. Whether it’s worse than mine would be, I’m not entirely sure.