Thursday, July 31, 2008
nude men in comedy...cabaret?
"nude men in comedy cabary is disgusting. RE showing their bottoms it is family show. not pervert dept? RE man mad haters"
However far apart we get, the crazy letters will always bring us back together again.
Skin and Teeth - Joe Henry
Tiger Mountain Peasant Song - Fleet Foxes
The Night Starts Here - Stars
NYC - Interpol
She's Got A New Spell - Billy Bragg
Noah's Dove - 10,000 Maniacs
Wednesday, July 30, 2008
"July-ly-ly, July-ly-ly, Where we were free"
Something to do with the heat maybe, but I’m thinking about sand a lot.
My Mum being a sun worshipper and my Dad being keen on an excuse for a drive we spent a lot of summer Sundays in jams on the way to the coast.
In preparation my Dad fetched the papers* and made the coffee while my Mum packed the picnic. The legendary occasion when she made the sandwiches but, inexplicably, left them behind, wrapped in bread bags sitting on the kitchen table, gave my Uncle Bill decades of fun.
In those days everybody drove right down onto the beach, making a base camp around their cars, staking out territory, meaning to put up the wind shield but always finding it too much of a faff and throwing it back in the boot.
I took a bucket, a spade and a selection of matchbox cars and spent the day constructing fortified towns with elaborate road systems. My Dad would help with tunnels and moats and fetching buckets of water from the sea.
In later years I took a book and sulked under towels.
The drive back, on a good day, would coincide with the Top Twenty and we’d stop in Bentham for ice cream.
I can feel that damp sand between my toes. It must be the heat.
*All the papers - People, Mirror, The News Of The World and The Sunday Post
Seventh Tree - Goldfrapp
Tuesday, July 29, 2008
The Quiet Zone is all very well except for the sitting and thinking, and there’s nothing much else to do, in the Quiet Zone, but sit and think.
I had an extra thought this morning, as I made my way down the platform: Pendolinos are sooooo long, the first and last carriages are practically in different counties.
Imagine if I were to get off at Coach A, wave my TrueLove a cheery goodbye, walk the length of the train then jump on again in First Class, just before the doors closed?
I could have a parallel existence; a real life second life. I wouldn't be sitting at my desk with my feet up, vacillating between boredom and mutiny, I’d be away doing all the important and fascinating things I’ve always thought of doing but somehow never had the time to, such as…..er….and….well…umm…. I wondered how long it would be before I got found out.
Then I had another thought, maybe it's the secrecy that appeals? Maybe I just need to keep secrets?
Like those people who leave the house with their briefcase every morning at eight even though they were made redundant six months ago.
Monday, July 28, 2008
8.29 On Time
It was something Geoff said that got me thinking.
My Mum was a sociable sort and, though my Dad was less keen, they were part of a crowd who made a habit of 'going back' somewhere after the pub. The favoured venue was the kitchens of the Posh School where they could creep around relatively harmlessly, indulging in the exaggerated shushing of the very pissed and, if they were really lucky, get bacon butties at the end of the night. When this was off limits it would be round to someone else's living room to get out the Glayva.
The summer I started High School we’d moved from a maisonette above a shop to a first floor flat. Keeping out of sight was more difficult. There was no cupboard under the stairs for starters. Sitting quietly on the landing, neither seen nor heard, was a thing of the past. It was hard enough to remain undetected in my room.
Saturday nights would often end with me watching telly in the dark, on the alert for the warning sounds of crunching gravel and car doors slamming, so I could scuttle safely off to bed before they made it up the stairs.
If my Dad was feeling especially sentimental Jim Reeves would be played, if not it might be Fivepenny Piece.
Voices would start at a well intentioned hush, get louder then fade again. Never quite loud enough for me to hear what was being said, but never enough of a murmer to ignore. Laughter would break out, then be stiffled.
Because I couldn't understand it I resented their enjoyment, but I much prefered those nights of quiet seething to the ones where someone else's house had been invaded, and I lay awake until two or three imagining fatal accidents instead.
Scar - Joe Henry
Wednesday, July 23, 2008
The Way Things Go
Last year when the "Who wants a stab vest?" list went round I didn't put my name on it. I figured, as I almost never leave my desk, I'd be relatively safe.
I didn't figure on the levels of intrigue, paranoia and naked ambition reaching such intensity that I'm beginning to think I need to start watching my own back in case I stab myself in it.
Suddenly, body armour doesn't seem such a daft idea.
Heartcore - Wildbirds & Peacedrums
I'm in the "Quiet Zone".
Tuesday, July 22, 2008
Friday, July 18, 2008
"...but you don't mean a thing to me"
So, Wednesday night, when we arrived at the Apollo w a y too early to find the queue already round the block, I got the sinking feeling that we were already
w a y too late. We faced facts and went to the pub until things got moving.
As it turned out we managed to get a not-too-bad second row spot, away from the more annoying elements...well, except for the couple to the left who couldn't keep their hands off each other and the fat kid with the camera on the right... but they did do my favourite, and "I Will Possess Your Heart" sounded, ahem, awesome.
Transatlanticism - Death Cab For Cutie
I sit opposite a Lad'n'Dad combo kitted out in shorts and cagoules.
On the table is a well-stocked M&S cool bag, under the table a large umbrella.
The Lad (under instruction from the Dad) moves the cool bag out of my table space, which doesn't leave him a whole lot of room. "You're OK", I gesture him to move it back, "I don't need the space".
(It's not as if I'm about to get my lap top out and start working is it?)
I'd guess the Lad is eleven or twelve, he's not plugged into anything, he's not texting, he's not fidgeting or nagging. The Dad is reading the sports section of The Times.
As I stand up to leave I try out my theory:"Enjoy the golf"
The Dad says "Thank you".
The Photo Album - Death Cab For Cutie
Thursday, July 17, 2008
Some of the contributors appeared to be under the impression that compilation tapes were a guy-thing (the actual Guy didn't think so, obviously). Was there ever anyone with a tape recorder and a record collection who didn't make one?
An interview with one of those weirdo freaks might've been interesting.
What've they done to Lastfm???
It's a complete mess and I can't find anything!!!
(Or, what I meant to say: I'm still on strike. Did anyone notice yet? No? Thought not.)
Tuesday, July 15, 2008
DeputyMoleMan's got a new project. He's out there on the pavement trying to fit a quart into a pint pot: organising musical chairs and passing the parcel.
We're upstairs playing pin the tail on the donkey.
When I first started this job the department worked out of an office it had outgrown. We fell over boxes and fought over shelf space for a few years, then the building across the road became vacant and, at not-inconsiderable expense, we moved into it. Walls were removed, telephone lines re-routed, computer points installed and disabled toilets constructed. It was even given a new coat of corporate grey.
The Department expanded a bit more.
For the last twelve months it's been common knowledge that we're on the move again.
Sometime "before the end of the year" (though which year has not been established) we're moving across the road. Back into that building that was too small five years ago.
It's all about seeing change as an opportunity.
Now It's On - Grandaddy
Love Is Not Enough - Dean Friedman
Leave The Biker - Fountains Of Wayne
Hey Jealousy - Gin Blossoms
Monday, July 14, 2008
We thought we'd comb our hair, put on something clean and take afternoon tea at The Midland yesterday. Just to see what it was like.
The kite festival was on and the place was heaving.
This is a Good Thing, obviously, but sort of spoiled the art deco elegance I'd been anticipating.
We didn't hang around. We went to Artisan instead.
Then, being true copy cats, followed in Jo's footsteps and popped into the bookshop.
Hotel Yorba - White Stripes
Late Night Grande Hotel - Nanci Griffith
The Hotel Majestic - Fountains Of Wayne
Broadway Hotel - Al Stewart
Labels: real life
Friday, July 11, 2008
"...my ex-wives all despise me"
From the emphasis he put on that "all" I was wondering if he'd got divorced again.
The Unauthorized Biography Of Rienhold Messner - Ben Folds Five
Tuesday, July 08, 2008
I've finished it!!!
(Carcetti = the John Cusack character)
Welcome to my empty life.....
Labels: real life
"...it went the dull and wicked ordinary way"
The call limps to its conclusion and my headset droops from my ears.
ThesaurusBoy: Did that man say he felt like he was banging his head against a brick wall?
Me (weakly): Yes.
ThesaurusBoy: I guessed as much from the way you said “I know how you feel”.
Alligator - The National
Monday, July 07, 2008
Wimbledon Fortnight was always a big deal in our house.
My Mum was mad on tennis.
I was mad on Jimmy Connors.
I loved that he never gave up on a game and didn't seem to know when he was dead & buried.
For two weeks my Dad's tea was never on the table when he got in from work.
It all went wrong somewhere.
I lost interest when you couldn't tell you who was who anymore. Serve Big - win point, Serve Not-Quite-So-Big - lose point. No guile, no grace, no sheer bloody-mindedness.
But, for some reason, I decided I'd watch the final yesterday. When it still wasn't over at nine o'clock I thought I'd be pulling a sickie today.
It was like the Old Days. My Mum would've loved it.
Alligator - The National
Thursday, July 03, 2008
"...hold on to Jesus' hand"
I have no self control.
I just watched three episodes and I was meant to be limiting myself to one.
I will run out!!!
What will I do when I run out???
Labels: real life
Wednesday, July 02, 2008
"...stay out super late tonight"
Led to the Gig Of The Year (so far)
I think I I might have mentioned how much I love that album by The National?
I love them even more now.
It got a bit intense at times.
But how often does the lead singer climb down off the stage to serve water to the dehydrating masses? (It was pretty hot).
(And, what is it about hotels!?)
(P.S. Hey, Joe - Leeds looks pretty good doesn't it?)