Friday, 31 October 2014

Day Four, Tallinn (Estonia)

Day: Four

Date: 30th October 2014

Destination: Tallinn (Estonia)

Subject: Daniel Sloss

We are taxiing the runway in Vilnius bound for Estonia, already my subject's consciousness has lapsed and the vehicle of flesh and bones he uses to express himself in the physical realm has been left unattended while his mind meanders through a distant dreamland. It must take a lot of work for Daniel to keep his face together in his waking hours because it's natural fall is that of a 'Chronic' as described by Ken Kasey in One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest. If I didn't know the man already and this was my first impression of him I'd make the fair assumption that he is paralysed from the neck up. 

As the cabin readies for take off, I have taken it upon myself, rather mischievously, to alter my subject's surroundings while he is unaware. I have lowered his tray table, elevated his arm rest, reclined his seat, unclipped his seatbelt and closed his window blind, the stewardess is heading methodically in our direction closing the overhead storage bins and checking the conformity of her temporary hostages. I am fighting a wry smile in anticipation of the impending confrontation. 

The experiment was a huge success, I imagine if my subject was attached to an ECG monitor the display would be a colourful array of activity, it was magnificent to witness the way his loose face tightened instantaneously as his skin vacuum sealed to his face meat when the hostile interference of our dictator caused him to rapidly regain operation. His eyes widened, awake but not yet sentient, I saw anger and confusion flash through him from opposing directions and clash to create an emotion yet to be named by the English language. It was a joy to behold.

Daniel is asleep. 

We have spent the afternoon with one of my field agents, Louis Zezeran, a cheerful Australian gentleman who has infectious optimism and ambition in abundance, an asset to Estonia's entertainment industry. Louis  has spearheaded this particular mission and managed to sell upwards of 450 tickets for tonight's show in Tallinn. Just to put that into perspective I must point out that Estonia has a population of 1.3 million residents, so by that ratio it is the statistical equivalent of filling 23'000 seats in a British arena, a feat that the football club Crystal Palace often fail to achieve. Despite bearing the weight of such an operation Louis still took the time out to casually show us around the aesthetically charming sights of Tallinn's old town. Then Daniel had a nap. 

The adrenalin and alcohol have entered my subject's blood stream in perfect measure this evening, I of course have maintained the same level of consumption in order to conclusively monitor results, and I must say, this is starting to feel a lot less like work. My subject and I experienced one shift in emotion tonight when we entered the realm of bemusement on discovering the Estonian people who we had fallen in love with are so casually racist (amongst other unnecessary ist's and ic's) that it almost surpasses offensive and becomes comical. It was brought to my attention that there is a popular TV show in which white Estonian public figures 'black up' for the purpose of entertainment. I was also informed by a group of lovely young gentleman that during the live radio coverage of the Eurovision Song Contest they partake in a drinking game in which they consume a small vessel of vodka every time the broadcaster uses derogatory words beginning with N or F to denote the colour or sexual orientation of the show's competitors. Allegedly this activity can result in you being rather intoxicated by the end of the radio transmission. Daniel and I quite firmly stated our disagreement with this cultural behaviour and questioned the authenticity of the facts we were receiving but the gentlemen insisted their information was not fictitious and despite being immersed in this environment they appeared to share our bewilderment.

Signing off,

Kai Humphries

Thursday, 30 October 2014

Day Three, Vilnius (Lithuania)

Day: Three

Date: 29th October 2014

Destination: Vilnius (Lithuania)

Subject: Daniel Sloss

Dear Journal,
I'd like to start today's entry by mentioning my subject's astounding ineptitude with the fairer sex. After the evening's performance we engaged in a greeting ceremony with a number of the ladies and gentlemen from the crowd of circa 250 people that had stayed behind for photographs, autographs and friendly embraces. Daniel, like myself, takes a sincere, friendly approach to acquainting with his admirers during this vain self indulgence, however, on more than one occasion in these exchanges he is approached by rather comely maidens with quite obvious promiscuous designs on his eligibility. Their intentions towards him start subtle with provocative body language and suggestive contact as they nestle against him for a photograph somewhat too familiarly, frisking him like an accomplished pick pocket as they ready for a picture to be captured, a picture which is quite clearly a secondary goal, a distraction perhaps, from their real mission to ensnare his undivided attention. Their subtle approaches are then made obvious by frank verbal declarations of intent to which he somehow still remains oblivious as they throw their advances into a chasm of apathy. I asked my subject why he didn't take up the offer from a particularly forward young strumpet to go for a drink elsewhere, instead of having his final beverage of the evening with a mature American gentleman, who although being extremely pleasant company, was unlikely to accommodate his desires as a heterosexual man. My subject responded firstly with confusion, that he hadn't acknowledged the borderline sexual assault on his person, then he brushed off the already expired notion because, and I quote: We have an early start in the morning. Completely disregarding the fact he sleeps upwards of 16 hours per day on public transport, rest is something he could certainly trade for a far more rewarding use of his time. I myself am quite happily monogamous and spiritually bound to one lady, but the part of me that would like to live vicariously through Daniel on this excursion wants to fight him to the death. My disillusionment is inflated by the fact he spends his first hour of bedding down in his chambers perusing the tinder application every night before sleep consumes him, I'm starting to believe his addiction to this modern courting device is despairingly to that of the means and not the ends. 

Prague to Warsaw

Warsaw to Vilnius

It's a good job my subject got plenty of rest last night in preparation for all of the streneous exertion he had to endure over the course of the morning, I'm experiencing a pang of guilt for intercepting his coffee every time we've been airborne this week. 

We were welcomed into the city of Vilnius by the most agreeable of fellows who despite his best intentions almost inadvertently compromised my true identity by holding up a sign at the airport for one "Dr. Kai Humphries". It took me a considerable amount of composure to withhold the facts about my doctorate and my position as one of the world's top analysists of psychiatric activity. We convinced my subject the gesture was a mere witticism by using the case study that rhythm and blues artiste Dr Dre is not a practicing medical professional. Mentioning this served a duality of purpose as I had increasing concerns that my subject had momentarily forgot about Dre.

My Lithuanian counterpart, Paulius, took a moment to show my companion and I around his splendid city, he dispelled any British ignorance we were harbouring by showing us that this part of Eastern Europe is a highly cultured civilisation with coffee shops, bars and social order, quelling our pre conceived judgements that it was a city made solely of loose bricks whose residents would manavour around in tanks and on mules. They dine in restaraunts just like us and don't rely on air drops for food like we anticipated, their economy is not only stable but they appear to be affluent. My first observation of their cultural advancement came when I witnessed members of law enforcement patrolling on Segways, like something from the works of Aldous Huxley (see also Lenina Huxley of Demolition Man) it was a dreamlike picture of futuristic dandy. 

I took great pleasure in obliging my role as my subject's subordinate this evening, although I am only performing on stage to disguise my secret objectives, I'd be lying to state that it didn't fill me with an overwhelming sense of accomplishment when I provide such sweet, modest, humble people with enough endorphine release for them to react in an audible display of joyousness. I believe my subject would second this notion. After spending time with the people we entertained after the event I made a mental note that we can learn a lot from their humility and enlightenment, I feel I'm finding out as much about myself as I am about my subject on this particular mission. 

There was no concern in the end that our hosts wanted to harvest our kidneys, in matter of fact, they plied us with enough dubious alcohol to render them useless to the Estonians we will be accompanying in a matter of hours. 

Signing off,

Dr Kai Humphries  

Wednesday, 29 October 2014

Day Two, Prague (Czech Republic)

Day: Two

Date: 28th October 2014

Destination: Prague (Czech Republic)

Subject: Daniel Sloss

Dear Journal,
This morning's hangover is a result of the wine, gin and tequila that we shared with the locals of Vienna amidst some jovial shenanigans in order to stimulate some responses from my test subject, Daniel Sloss. My most prominent discovery in last night's experiment was my subject's stance on the children's documentary "Tom and Jerry." Once he was lubricated with alcohol he shared with our new friends his strong belief that Tom was indeed the innocent victim in the hostile rivalry with his nemesis. Although the vocal majority insisted that Tom was trying to viciously murder Jerry with a multitude of devious and violent schemes, while his rodent rival was just trying to live, Daniel pointed out that Tom was a simple house cat living happily with his owner and harbouring no bad intentions until the antagonistic vermin disrupted the harmony of his dwelling. This opinion resonated with a small number of our party but the rest stood firm that the mouse still didn't deserve to die and that Daniel's opinion that the cat's role in the house was to rid the place of such impostors, was nothing short of archaic. Where else is the mouse supposed to live? Is Daniel suggesting the mouse should live on the street just because it's a mouse, an Orwellian social injustice! Does the mouse really deserve to die when it's only guilty of seeking asylum? My subject's right wing views were received in jest but I will closely monitor such political attitudes over the next three weeks. 

We've been on the train to Prague for almost four hours, we are sharing a coach with two lovely, mature American ladies who Daniel proceeded to charm as though they were a girlfriend's parents. They seemed impressed at first until he fell asleep and then his face melted like someone left the heating on at a really low budget wax work museum where they could only commission the sculptures of celebrities with less than 50k twitter followers, which really undid all of his hard work with the milfs.

When we arrived at the hotel and found out that we had free wifi, Daniel hurried to his room with some urgency and has been locked in there for almost 2 hours, I'm scratching my head at what he could be up to, if I am not mistaken I can hear him doing breathing exercises. On a side note; I thought the toilets in Czech Republic were the same as the toilets I encountered yesterday in Austria but it turns out I need to leave the maid an apology note for the mess I made of the bidet. 

Daniel has emerged from his quarters with quite an odd disposition, he appears to be exhausted and dehydrated, and keeps flexing his right palm as though he is carrying a sprain, if I were to make an assumption I'd say he'd been arm wrestling vigorously for the latter half of the afternoon, but strangely enough, I didn't see a challenger enter his room, I must have dozed off. 

I was initially concerned that my thick Geordie accent would prove to be an obstacle in my attempt to masquerade as a comedian in foreign lands but it turns out my accent is exactly that of a Czechoslovakian citizen speaking English as a second language at a GCSE level, they actually think I'm a local so I felt a real sense of community in the reception I just received. My cover is still intact for another day. My subject is on stage now filling the bucket with a hole in it that is his soul, with enough laughter and applause to make him feel some human emotion, I imagine he will be upbeat for at least a short while after this. It is also noteworthy to mention he is holding the microphone with his left hand this evening for some reason.  

This evening my subject got so stoned with members of the audience that when struggling to read out something from his iPhone notes, he stopped to apologise "because he couldn't read his own writing" despite the writing being that of a typed font and not his specific illegible calligraphy. As a side note I must add that talking about marijuana on stage in a Czech public forum will result in selected citizens serving you with a gentleman's doobie apr├Ęs performance. Which is quite bizarre because I spoke largely about masturbation tonight and I am yet to be relieved by any of our supporters. 

Alarms are set for a 06:45 pick up tomorrow for our journey to Lithuania, a country I somehow associate with human trafficking and organ theft. I hope I don't wake up in an ice bath with abdominal stitches. 

Signing off.

Kai Humphries

Tuesday, 28 October 2014

Day One, Vienna (Austria)

Day: One

Date: 27th October 2014

Destination: Vienna (Austria)

Subject: Daniel Sloss

Dear Journal,
Today I embark on my most comprehensive study to date, I have been enrolled by MZA-Artists to accompany their flagship client Daniel Sloss on a three week excursion across Europe, the experiment has been set up under the guise of a "comedy tour" in which we will perform stand up comedy in various European cities in succession. I will be posing as his support act and it is paramount to the study that the subject is unaware of my true role in this endeavour as his observer. While the subject sleeps on the flights between locations I will update this journal on his behavioural patterns in accordance with the various social stimulations encountered on our travels. The results of this social experiment will be available online in via my blog and social media pages.

The subject started his day how I expected him to start the day, with utter ambivalence, based on my previous research I have found he tends to show no outward positive emotions such as excitement, whether or not he feels these emotions inside is unknown, but if he does there is no trace of it in his facial expression or general demeanour. I think he has high expectations for the day ahead however because he washed this morning. We are currently airborne and headed towards our first destination, Vienna (via Amsterdam) I asked him if he had ever been to Vienna before while we were in the departure lounge and he nearly looked away from his iPhone to respond. He ordered a bacon sandwich and left the bacon, this behaviour is most peculiar, maybe he wanted to order just bread but didn't want the girl serving him to think he was a duck. 

The hostess on this KLM flight just give me a free cup of coffee and a biscuit then asked if my companion, who is in a state of slumber, would also like a cup of coffee and a biscuit, I kindly accepted on his behalf and then proceeded to devour them myself. He will never know.  

As we start our descent onto European soil my main anxiety is in my subject's ability to survive without 3G for an extended period of time, his systems may in fact shut down if he goes without tinder for too long, it will be my duty to usher him safely between wifi hotspots until he acclimatises to the change. Constant data flowing through his devices appears to be the subjects lifeblood, deprivation could result in him entering a vegetative and catatonic state of consciousness. This would be detrimental to our trials... We've landed, I'm in too deep to turn back now.

We had to hurry to catch our connect flight at Schiphol, Daniel's impatience was piqued when we were held up at security by the lady in front of us at passport control casually chatting to the guard and holding up the queue, as soon as their conversation length exceeded that of the usual transaction Daniel kindly suggested that the pair added one another on Facebook and caught up in their own time, he did not address them directly but took the interesting approach of landing the suggestion near enough to them for it to invade their personal space. It was very effective. We still had to sprint however and my T-shirt is currently stuck to my back. My subject is already asleep as we ascend for the second time today, I'm looking forward to my coffees and biscuits. 

There is food in our stomachs, drinks in our glasses and warmth in our hearts. We have been treated with the utmost hospitality from our wonderful hosts Liddy, Chris and Norman here in Vienna, it is astonishing how seriously they are taking my project. My subject seems to come to life when receiving generosity and his status is happy.

I need to keep my sight on the goal, I had so much fun on stage I almost forgot about the reason I'm here, I would definitely consider a career in stand up comedy if I wasn't a spy. Daniel is on stage as I write, the observation I made earlier about his outward display of positive emotion (or lack there of) seems to be rendered nullified when the boy is on stage, it's like there is an emptiness in him that can only be filled by the approval of strangers

The toilets in Austria have a flat, dry, porcelain shelf that catches your poo and shows it to you, so you can inspect it, you don't necessarily want to inspect it but when yesterday's lunch is served to you like a beached barnacle on an otherwise pristine shore you can't help but spare a moment to admire the gift you have left for yourself. Just hanging there in poo purgatory awaiting it's fate.

Well isn't Vienna just lovely, I thought I would test my subject's responses to alcohol and through nothing but sheer dedication to my cause I self administered myself with the same dosage as he so not to raise his suspicions. The results were astounding, we befriended upwards of a dozen Austrians and had a lengthy debate with them about Tom and Jerry, I will post more about my findings once my inebriation has alleviated. Our train to Prague is in five hours, I must get some rest. 

Signing off,

Kai Humphries