Showing posts with label Bank Holiday. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Bank Holiday. Show all posts

Monday 27 July 2020

Dream Fragments

I often wake and want o find what happens in what I'm dreaming , good or bad. I'm surprised that bits of a dream I woke from a couple of days back have stayed with me. They make little sense although I think where they came from from . Robocop characters working with and attacking a group I was with (probably influenced by the second series of "Altered Carbon" that I finished last week on Netflix , a computer terminal flashing up that I needed to take annual leave (we are getting work reminders about this and I have taken nothing but Bank Holidays this Financial Year, so that is nearly four months without a chosen day's leave) , and I wanted to know if we got out of the "situation" , but I woke fully , so the dream was lost. This does happen to me, and probably everyone quite frequently.

Because I am ahead of the curve on my walking I only have to do 4K steps a day to hit may target for July , which therefore makes me a little lazy, though it means I have more than hit my target this month. I did think that lockdown was going to stop me from doing my million steps every three months but as yet it hasn't. I am lucky that I live in an area with plenty of places to walk.

This week I am continuing with working through my CD box sets and today it's The Velvet Undergound "Peel Slowly And See" , the first CD being demos put together by Lou Reed , John Cale and Sterling Morrison , "Waiting For The Man" being almost Country and Western Swing style and "Venus In Furs" a medieval acoustic work out, these are interesting but not easy listening. At the wekend I was listening to their debut album on vinyl and noticed for the first time that the band's name doesn't appear on the front cover, but Andy Warhol's does.

So we'll go with a take on "All Tomorrows Parties" , I think the drum sound is awesome on this, as I write I'll listening to the first album with the extra takes , but is a definitie experience.

Friday 1 May 2020

May I?

It's May the first and I was looking to a Bank Holiday on Monday but the Government have moved it so supposedly celebrate VE Day , if they wanted that they should have given an extra day, but it's really to take it away from the political Left as May Day in the nineteenth Century it was chosen as International Workers Day although prior to that is was a Festival of Spring Bank Holiday, and like many pagan festivals has been apprehended by modernity.

Essential I wanted to share one of my favourite artists songs "May I?" also known as "Puis Je?"  by Kevin Ayers  and obviously "May I?" and May 1st look similar to each other.

The weather looks nice and I may take a short walk possibly to the Roman Temple just off the West Road behind the job centre as I haven't been there for an age and need a change of walking direction, although I may find it's a little too far but I will definitely visit over the weekend.

One of the problems with this lockdown is that lots of current things we take for granted are now not happening and we don't know if they ever will , no new TV , no sport, although thanks to digital media we have so much that we can watch if we look for it.

I've recommenced "Vikings" and didn't know that Paris was originally built on an island in the Seine (where Notre Dame stands) and didn't know that the the Vikings did attack Paris. My lack of historical knowledge means I don't know the outcome but my historical knowledge implies it wasn't successful.

Tuesday 7 May 2019

Six Minutes

One of my bugbears is waking up, wondering what time it is and seeing it's six minutes before your alarm is due to go off. You can't go back to sleep, or enjoy the few minutes you have left in bed so you drag yourself out of your put to start the day and take yourself off to whatever awaits you, work or whatever. I don't know whether it's worse after a Bank Holiday Weekend although the slight upside is that, for me, it's only a four day working week.

I think a four day working week for people like me would actually improve productivity and and work-life balance, although that imay not an option for one man businesses, or maybe it is. I remember the story of an American Tyre business who realised they got most of their business at the weekend, so they changed their working week from Monday to Saturday to Friday to Monday, so their employees got a four day week for the same pay and the company's profits went up. I know this is just an isolated example but it is something worth considering.

Anyway I think I'll just share The Stranglers "Five Minutes" with you before I set off for work.

Have a good Tuesday everyone.

Monday 6 May 2019

You Have To Watch This In HD

A friend of mine asked me to watch something on a new Hi Def video player many years back and he enthused about the fact that in the space sequences you could see that the backdrop was actually a black curtain. I told him I don't want to see a black curtain I wasnt to see a great film.

Another friend told me I had to see "Taken" in HD. I recorded it in normal resolution and watched it and thought, it's just a typical Liam Neeson film.

I have a DVD set of the original Addams Family and put it on and the transfer to DVD is not that great, like a crackly vinyl record for the eyes, but five minutes into the first episode you don't see the white screen noise you nee the excellent acting the hilarious story and the great characters.

I recently watched "Dr Strange" on oddity from the new Marvel Studios which was absolutely excellent and the special effects, particularly the folding buildings sequences (stolen from Christopher Nolan's "Inception" ?) are the sort of thing that would probably benefit from Hi Def but looked great in normal definition.

Since we switched to digital transmissions, most transmissions are fine in normal definition but sometimes they get it by digital drop out and pixelation (which I don't remember from analogue transmissions) but it my be like DAB against normal radio, mostly DAB is perfect but it can drop out, whereas normal radio you get interference and fading.

A year or two back we had another 3D TV push which dropped off , "Watch Football In 3D" they said, go to a real football match I said. There's no 3D sports broadcasts no although still a lot of films. Again it's something for those absolutely ridiculous disaster / horror movies (examples here)

Basically if a film or program is worth watching the quality of the media becomes secondary, yes it's great if you can see the best picture possible, but I'd rather have a great film on low res media than a bad film on hi res media.

So I have to share The Addams Family dancing to The Ramones' "Blitzkrieg Bop", what's not to like?

Enjoy your Bank Holiday Monday.

Saturday 4 May 2019

May The Fourth .... Be With You ..... Star Wars Day

Today is a very sunny May 4th to start the Bank Holiday Weekend. Peter Mayhew who played Chewbacca died this week aged 74, he was 7'3" and played Chewbacca in all th elive action Star Wars films.

May blogging is a lot more leisurely, this being my second May post in four days. The song I'm going to play is "Take It Easy On Me" by Irish band A House, just because it came on The Chain just as I started to write this, and it's just one of those moments when one of those great records you had forgotten about comes on the radio (This time RadMac on 6Music)

So today is going to be a mowing the lawn and posting things day, assuming that the weather holds but we shall see how that goes.

I know this is a very short post as I can't really think of anything more to say at the moment so will leave you with A House, and have a good weekend.

Tuesday 23 April 2019

#AprilSongs #23 Gentle Tuesday

Apparently it's St George's Day , so a day for Little Englanders to moan about not having a Bank Holiday to celebrate their most English of Saints, for "celebrate" read go to the pub and get drunk on John Smith's or Bombardier, but actually today is the first day back after the Easter Bank Holiday.

Also today I heard a really annoying term "slashies" , this usually refers to self employed people who embrace multiple "careers" / "businesses" . Now I have no problem with people doing multiple jobs because that's what they want to do, but most people in this situation are forced into this because the only jobs are zero hours or short hours contracts that do not pay enough to basically live, so taxi driver / pizza delivery guy / toilet attendant  / bouncer would be an example of a "slashie" today. Says a lot about how our economy is run.

Now to the business end of the blog, the #AprilSongs and today we have "Gentle Tuesday"the opening song from "Sonic Flower Groove"  by Primal Scream for the penultimate Tuesday song. The guitar sound is almost Byrds like and is a welcome addition to this sequence.

So time to take drugs and take a walk to work and listening to some decent music on the way to work.

Wednesday 17 April 2019

#AprilSongs #17 Wednesday Evening Blues

For the #AprilSongs sequence I have been surprised how many options there are for each day. At the beginning I was sure "Blue Monday" by New Order would be in here, it probably won't. I though I may have to include the Inspector Morse / Endeavour Theme by Barrington Pheloung because Morse's boss in Endeavour has a surname of Thursday, but I have a long list of Thursday songs.

Today we are going with "Wednesday Evening Blues" by John Lee Hooker another blues song like the one we opened with "Stormy Monday Blues" by T-Bone Walker.

So as it is a Bank Holiday Weekend we are more than half way through the week and I am well past halfway in the #AprilSongs sequence, which has surprised me a little from when I first had the idea, though it goes to show you never know if something can be done until you actually try it.

I'm sure I will have other ideas to make me write, but for the rest of April this will keep me occupied.

Friday 24 August 2018

Red Sky

This morning looked out the back and the sky was a definite shade of red and deep pink. Made me think of of the "Red Sky in th emorning, Shepherds Warning" , although the sky outside looks sunny and blue with wisps of fluffy clouds.

Musically Jimi Hendrix's "House Burning Down" - "Look at the Sky Turn a Hell Fire Red" sprang to mind as well as U2's "Under A Blood Red Sky" which was the first U2 album I really liked all the way through paving the way for "The Unforgettable Fire" which was their first studio album to show what they could really do.

The 22nd was my sister Yvonne's birthday but for some reason I didn't make a blog post, which given that I am trying to hit #August50 gives me another one to catch up, but this is my 43rd post this month which equals the number of post I did in October 2015 when I did my #ALifeInNumbers sequence which was a sequence of fifty nine songs for my fifty nine years in which the sequence number appeared in the song.

Hendrix music is very sparse on Youtube but this Randy Hansen tribute is rather impressive.

It's the Friday before the Bank Holiday, have a brilliant day everybody.

Saturday 5 May 2018

Hot #TenAlbumsInTenDays #2- #6 - Carl Orff - Carmina Burana

It has been a hot and worrying day today. The weather has been wonderful but I had to get back up the road before they shut Sutton Bank for the Tour De Yorkshire. That was fine but I had ordered a new washing machine from Argos and though I would go for the install and dispose option. I was worried that I would not be able to disconnect it or would end up flooding the kitchen as I don't rate myself with water pipes. Water can also be very insidious, sneaking through the most impossible of gaps sometimes over years.

That is happening tomorrow but they expect you to disconnect the old washing machine. It's been connected for fifteen years or more, and I could not get the hot water tap to move. Then you start thinking is it clockwise or anti clockwise. After a lot of messing it turns out the cold is clockwise and hot is anti clockwise, there's nothing like a bit of conformity (or not) to make life interesting.

Then it was a case of dragging the damned thing into the garage where it is sitting now awaiting a call for them to bring the new one sometime between 7am  and 7pm tomorrow, nothing like a narrow delivery slot and this is nothing like a narrow delivery slot. Still when it is fitted it will be nice to have a washing machine that doesn't sound like it's filled with metal hub caps.

I finished "The Liar" by Stephen Fry an dit's entertaining enough but hardly essential reading and now I am on to "The Good Man Jesus and The Scoundrel Christ"  by Philip Pullman which is an off kilter trip through the lives of Jesus and Christ and I'm more thatn a third of the may though after a day although it is large pring on small pages with a decent amount of white space, but I expect to finish it before the end of the Bank Holiday

I wasn't going to document my second #TenAlbumsInTenDays stint but todayday I chose my favourite classical piece. I like bits of others but this is something I love listening end to end. It sufferes from the main fault of Classical Music , the extreme dynamic ranges from almost solence to exploding noise. Samples of it have been used and reused and should be a staple of every household although Orff's work was produced under Nazi rule, but this is an amazing piece of music.

The Sand Animation video by Hungarian animator Ferenc Caco is an amazing accompaniment and you can see his work here 

OK I will leave you to enjoy this

Monday 29 May 2017

So Much For Obsession

Well the last two days I haven't made my 11K steps, I still am 12K ahead of my target and could possibly nip out for another walk and make up the 3.5K steps that I am short today.

I am feeling lethargic and apathetic, because I am waiting for a call that means that I need to drive down to Coventry and back, that's eight hours driving and I'm not a huge fan of driving, but it's far better than being stuck in hospital which is Fiona's situation at the moment.

I didn't even write yesterday but managed to catch up on "American Gods" so that's fine. The weather is grey, so not exactly inspiring.

The problem is when you are waiting on a call, you can't really start on something else or go out to a film or a gig, there's more important things in life than being selfish. I'm looking forward to having Fiona back and catching up on TV and then having a week's holiday next week.

So I though "The Waiting" by Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers would be appropriate for the whole of this Bank Holiday Weekend. See I can't even write that many words even though I haven't written anything for two days. I am still keeping up the number of posts so have maintained #ATuneaDayinMay but I really should be writing more about stuff that is interesting really.

I'm sure the journey to Coventry and back will give me lots to write about, and I suppose the 250 or so words that are in this piece is not that small. I seem to remember doing 100 word essays at school, or maybe I am just imagining that, I wonder if my teachers ever counted how many words I wrote or was it just a threat to make sure I wrote enough to be read.

Who knows.

Anyway I will go out for another walk now , even though the weather is still greay.

I may have an early start tomorrow

Friday 28 April 2017

Two Eight Four

It could be a house number, it could be a bus number , it could be any number. It's the first three number in the powers of two with the last two's positions swapped. Although this is essentially a diary so that I can keep a track of things that catch my imagination it was also meant to be a source of inspiration for a book which is still nowhere near completion.

It's also another example of how my mind flies off at tangents influenced by things I see hear or read. Wire's album "154" was named because they had just played their 154th gig.

284 is the page I've reached in Tony Morley's "The Age Of Bowie" that started as a sort of biography but is now using David Bowie's albums as an almost stream of consciousness narrative. It's also up to the album "Diamond Dogs" which was a soundtrack to to Bowie's "Nineteen Eighty Floor Show"  which was meant to be his take on George Orwell's brutal "1984", but the Orwell foundation would not grant him permission to use the book. He still included a track on the album called "1984".

Last year I did a musical sequence call #ALIfeInNumbers in which I included a sequence of 59 songs containing, in one form or another, songs with 1 to 59 in their titles or prominently in their lyrics.

When "Diamond Dogs" was released John Peel played the whole album on his Friday night show. I taped it, loved it and bought it the next day. I remember they airbrushed out the dogs you know whats on Guy Peellaert's excellent cover, but the video I've included has the unretouched version.

The piece I've included is the "Sweet Thing/Candidate/Sweet Thing(Reprise)" sequence which ends with a brutal speaker swapping guitar sequence before a complete stop heralding "Rebel Rebel", probably the best Rolling Stones song they never wrote.

It's a Bank Holiday Weekend, It's a Beautiful Day, have a brilliant time my friends.

Monday 29 August 2016

Find Something Good To Enjoy and Smile

I was going to write a post on And Annoyingly but decided to write something positive about enjoyable stuff. I am sick of people defending Donald Trump and attacking Jeremy Corbyn, Corbyn has his faults but is still the best option for a Labour leader. That's all I am going to say.

Vinyl Beauty
Maybe I shouldn't go on Facebook, but I do I have interactions with some wonderful friends on there, and then I feel better, and put on some music such as Stomu Yamash'ta's Floating Music. I remember buying it on Island's mid priced label for £1.49 when it came out around 1972, I had seen Man From The East on TV so I bought it and loved it. Just an example of me liking something that no one else in my social circles had even come close to , and when they heard hit they weren't exactly supportive, but that's their loss. It's always good to try new things but I've never been taken by smooth lounge jazz , but this was a complete different universe.  You can hear a bit of it here and here.

While this may not be the most exciting way to spend the last day of the bank holiday, it makes me feel good and therefore it is good. It is very easy to get sidetracked by negatives but have just booked La Rosa for my birthday as well , and it's my favourite hotel in my favourite holiday place, Whitby. On the phone they know who I am even though it's a year since I stayed there.

I also phoned and spoke with my dad, and over the weekend gave my eldest daughter something towards a Big Daisy Kiss Star Wars hand bag that she wants for her birthday. At least this year I won't forget that. That's inspired me to put up Meco's Disco take on Star Wars and that WILL bring a smile to your face.

Anyway as the sun sets on the Bank Holiday , smile , enjoy yourself and set yourself up for a brilliant week. I have done, so you do the same.

Tuesday 23 August 2016


The worst thing about waking up 45 minutes before your alarm goes off is that you know that by the time you get back to sleep the alarm is going to go off. The other option is to get up, but if you're tired you really want to enjoy your bed and warmth of being wrapped in your duvet. But it's Tuesday morning and you have to get up to get to work.

If you wake up earlier it's worth going back to sleep, but not at 5:15. It does give you a bit of extra day to play with and if I'm tired tonight I can always go to bed a bit earlier.

I'm looking out of the window and it's been raining, which means the lawn doesn't need watering, in fact it is looking very green.

Self Portrait
We have the August Bank Holiday coming up and maybe I'll track down some music event to attend, even though I've missed every one so far this year. Lee Perry is playing Think Tank this Sunday and with Monday off that is a definite possibility.

I saw him at the Riverside and that was just an amazing experience, so that's an excuse to do it again.

Really this post is just a slight moan about waking up too early , but is an excuses to play The Who's 5.15 from their seminal Quadrophenia album and I am currently reading Pete Townshend's autobiography "Who I Am" so again I suppose that's me going off on tangents and finding connections between disparate things which links in to my admiration for lateral thinking.

Anyway it's Tuesday morning, so have a brilliant day everyone.

Sunday 30 August 2015

Friday I'm In Love

Carter USM ?
Over the past few weeks this song has been popping up on the radio and in shops and other plays. I've never really listened to the lyrics , though the title is obvious , and also The Cure are one of my favourite  all time bands with "Kiss Me, Kiss Me, Kiss Me" being my favourite album with songs on there bringing back unexplained memories  such as "Like Cockatoos" bringing to mind JG Ballard's "The Drowned World" and the achingly beautiful "Catch" still reminding of a student call Frances I knew back in the eighties who was great Cure fan.

I gave her my vinyl copy of "Standing On A Beach" , amazing how songs can still hold associations after so long. That was way before Newcastle meant anything to me other than Michael Caine's face off with Alf Roberts in Gateshead.

The thing is "Friday I'm In Love" is such an uplifting song you almost don't need to listen to the words and it really does lift your spirits and make you feel better. It certainly resonates with my feelings and does lift me up even further. I've just transferred it to my phone because a listen to that will dispel any slight downers like Preston getting beat 2-0 by Hull yesterday.

Anyway we're in the middle of the Bank Holiday (for those in the UK) so enjoy the rest of the time and this week is only 4 days of work .

Love you all

Tuesday 20 May 2014

Sunny With A Forecast Of Rain

The great weather is continuing but they're forecasting heavy showers. The thing is we need rain to keep things growing. Last year a lot of the rain fell at night in my area, followed by clear days. This year we have had some torrential downpours but mainly during the working week, while weekends , especially holiday weekend have been sunny, so it's a case of so far so good.

So essentially I'm going to enjoy this weather and not going to consider it breaking. I carry an umbrella sometimes if I'm going somewhere wearing a suit whatever the weather, it's a bit like a spare tire, you hope to don't need it , but it's great to have if you do need it.

This morning the sky is looking grey so we may get rain today but I'm fine with that.

We have another Bank Holiday Weekend coming up and I could easily get used to a four day week. I thought the TED talk above was appropriate , and think we need to action this sort of thing to make our living areas a much better place.

Anyway I hope you all have a brilliant day, I certainly will do.