Wednesday, 20 August 2014

That was then.

I found a couple of old discs in the studio yesterday that I'd forgotten about for about 10 years, I used to carry a little digital camera in my pocket (before mobile phones) and take a lot of random pictures - I also used to go out a lot too, in Brighton I was out pretty much every night.

This is me, at a Buzzcocks gig, aged about 35, I was probably about 2 stone heavier then - I was obviously having a good time - I bought that badge while I was still at school in about 1978.

It was easy to go out all the time then, I was earning a lot of money, I had no pets, I owned a house in the middle of Brighton and I had a lot of friends, I was much more social - alcohol s a very good social lubricant, although I wasn't particularly happy - I tended to meet a lot of really dreadful people. Anyone still worth talking to from that time is still a friend. Oddly enough - discovered yesterday that someone I know now was at that gig and was probably standing next to me.

Here's another random shot - this is the scene when Jack Straw invited Condolezza Rice to visit Liverpool and took her to a concert at the Liverpool Philharmonic. I've never seen anything like it, apart from the massive police presence - the city pubs were full of CIA agents with terrible English accents trying to fit in. Literally all she had to do was get out of her car and walk through the door.

This is another shot of Liverpool - New Years Eve, 2005 - I had a very good little Fuji Camera that never let me down, and understood the value of point-and-click. Liverpool Cathedral has always been one of my favourite buildings, as a child I used to look at it from above the hill where I lived and pretend it was a spaceship that was going to take me away. Still waiting.

Here's another shot of the cathedral - these are the front doors p- they look like cast iron or bronze, but actually they are a type of very hard resin - they are pretty magnificent.

I found loads of photographs of gigs and events I have been to - I used to go to at least one every week - there was always something to do in Brighton and Liverpool - occasionally I'd manage gigs in both cities on consecutive days - and once I saw Arab Strap on Monday in Liverpool, Morrissey on Tuesday in London and Grandaddy in Brighton on Wednesday. I dread to think how much I must have spent - but in those days I earned much more and had a credit card. My mortgage was also about £200 per month less and I wasn't burdened by an overwhelming sense of dread and fear - I think 9/11 changed all that, I don't seem to remember enjoying my self so much after that. These were taken at about that time - I was in Liverpool and working from home in a huge studio on top of my fairly massive house overlooking the Mersey - it was so big that I could draw the floorplan of my house in Hastings on the top floor floorboards and measure out where my furniture would go. The bedroom was massive - I could ride my bike in a circle around the studio, seems absurd now - thinking about it. This is a nice shot of Alfie after £3000 worth of medical expenses and a blood transfusion after standing on a broken bottle.  He actually quite enjoyed being an invalid, it was the start of his relationship with large, comfortable chairs.

I'll spare you countless pictures of bands, crowds, drunk people, flashing lights and people playing guitars - and leave you with this rather unexpected and frankly quite grim shot of Steve Diggle from The Buzzcocks, who probably shouldn't have worn white jeans that night...

Tuesday, 19 August 2014


Much cooler this morning - came into work at about 7.45 to ease myself into the day.

Last night I went through some old papers and found this - it's a 'lost' Larking poem that was found after his death and printed in the Independent newspaper - I thought I'd mislaid it, it's one of my favourites.

Talking poetry - the sinister digital robots that post strange things on my blog have been at it again, that random post from a few years ago that's had 8000 views this year collects comments from robots - this is the latest - it's poetry itself.

Testament fit the monger is that you unremarkably plan of action due 
process of law, drill throwing the ballgame theater of operations can sometimes eve 
months are essential to pick out the true put down. 
Practicing these techniques leave you get departure.
Preparation Tips That The Pros What just would you would 
comparable thing much than merely victimisation the duplicate
tips for fittingness your own methods of purchase new, and point 
in time add other conception into your juicing variform so as not to price your root.
ataraxis is yours! If you demand to come through. location strength 

be the compensate design for statesman subject matter on the line of business.

I think that 'conception into your juicing variform so as not to price your root.' has to be my favourite line.

I need to pay bills today, do some shopping and generally stay on top of everything. I have a client who's a bit flakey and the lack of coordination is challenging, but it's a really interesting project and I'll just have to 'lead' that one.

Checking through this morning's papers. I know who Gary Bushey is.

That's as far as it goes. last night I had chips and vegetarian sausages and watched Sink The Bismark. Rock and Roll.

Sunday, 17 August 2014


I'm in work today - have a photographer coming over later to drop off some stuff he's been shooting for me and I need to really get ahead of myself - have quite a few deadlines looming at the moment.

Cycled over to Eastbourne yesterday for the Airshow - as expected, the roads were gridlocked, in situations like that - drivers express their frustration by blocking the cycle lanes, so there was much riding on the pavements. The town was busier than I've ever seen it - I wasn't that impressed with this years line up - mostly small aircraft (I really don't understand the point of wing-walkers) and training craft - no big hitters, except the display by the last two Lancaster bombers - which was very impressive, and very agile they were.  Wile I was wandering through the town I overheard a very posh woman in her 70's who looked like she's come down from Pimlico for the day tell her companion 'My God, this is worse than Cheltenham". I've never been to Cheltenham - and now I'm sure to give it a miss.

The last two Lancasters.

On Friday - I went into Waterstone's for a quick look at the new stock - plenty of really interesting new books gearing up for the big Xmas season - I had a battle with myself over spending £15 on a new book when I already have quite a lot of stuff unread or unfinished. Later that evening I went for a quick drink with a friend, 2 rounds and I'd spent the £15 I was at such pains to save. No wonder I never go out.

He was telling me about his lodger who spends much of his time 'away' working in security - the last few weeks in Libya escorting embassy officials out of the country at double quick speed. Apparently the French were very calm and relaxed about the whole thing, packing their expensive suitcases and waiting for their cabs in the bar - the English and Americans were shitting themselves.

I'd forgotten we have another event' lined up before bonfire night - it's shortly to be the Seafood and Wine festival - which is not the same as the Seafood festival, or the Beer festival - they are at different times of the year - it's just one big piss up after another here. Gets tedious after a while - dunno where people find the money.

Talking of money - am seriously considering getting the house scaffolded and doing the roof repairs myself.

Yesterday, after I got back from Eastbourne, I realised I'd spent the whole day with my jeans over my pyjamas - I have a feeling I must have just dragged them on for the early morning dog walk and forgotten - at least, that's my excuse - it's either that or I'm going senile.

Thursday, 14 August 2014

Thursday evening

Worked really hard today, so getting myself geared up for an evening in front of a film. Last night I watched 'The Woman In Black' again and liked it much more than the first time - very good cinematography and story development, acting pretty good too - only thing that annoyed my was the occasional use f skin-tone softening digital effects - looked uneven and unnecessary - wish they wouldn't bother. It was the kind of film that would have been even better in black and white.

Thursday in Hastings means market day - town was full of strange idiots and people with multiple facial piercings and tattoos - as if the circus came to town every week. The rubbish busker outside the town hall was 'doing' Adel -people were honestly screwing their faces up in pain as they walked past.

The really attractive girl who wears 50's clothing was back - clearly working on the bible bashers stall - I think they use her as bait.

Back in the village - someone has got carried away and stuck dozens of political flyers all over the village noticeboard, the pastiche flyers that mock Sainsbury's were so convincing I thought they were vouchers and considered taking a pile of them home.

Someone must have been knocking on the door yesterday - came home to a scene of complete destruction, dogs had ripped up anything they could get hold of. Small dog has started pissing in the dining room again.

Noticed today that the newly bearded and overweight Leonardo di Caprio looks exactly like mid-career decline Orson Welles. Is that intentional?

Never underestimate the contempt in which Cliff Richard is held by my generation, not totally sure what he's done to deserve it - I've done my best to ignore him - but there was no out puring of sympathy or defending voices in the studio today.

Wednesday, 13 August 2014


Very sad to hear about the death of Lauren Bacall, she had a long and eventful life that eclipsed the times she lived in. Quite an extraordinary woman. I saw her on the stage in Sweet Bird of Youth directed by Harold Pinter - I still have the program. They really don't make them like that any more - it wouldn't be possible. I like this photo - it's more natural and she is wearing hardly any maker-up, it's not as dramatic or flattering as her carefully composed and lit studio shots, but it show her for what she was, striking, beautiful and intelligent. Her autobiography is actually very good indeed.

Last night I re-watched 'Howl' - the James Franco film about the trial to prosecute the publishers of the titular work for obscenity - it was as good as I remembered, I really enjoyed it. Franco is very convincing, at the end - there is a section of Ginsburg talking and singing in the background that cuts to real recorded film of him, and you don't notice the point where Franco's voice segues into Ginsberg's, that's how close it was. There are also a lot of animated sequences to illustrate the narrative of the poem, and they work really well. It's was part of my 'winter' DVD drive - I sorted out about 35/40 films I intend watching over the next few months now that it's starting to get dark in the evening - all heavy stuff or foreign language films that are difficult to concentrate on when it's still sunny outside at 10pm.

I'm in work early, I'm supposed to have a meeting later but they have yet to confirm - I'm fully prepared regardless and have spent about 70 quid printing work out in anticipation. Senile greyhound has decided to move into the much smaller basket that belongs to the whippet - and she's fine about the arrangement - but he doesn't seem to be able to understand why it doesn't fit. A raw bone every day is doing wonders for his bad breath, so it's not all bad news - although a couple of his loose teeth seems to have fallen out in the process.

The house that has been 'done up' on my street has been painted a really insipid grey colour - just that little bit too light - and to be honest - I think that the render repairs are quite shabby - and as it seems that they have left the original layout - downstairs bathroom with two box rooms upstairs at the back - I have a feeling they may be thinking of renting it out - not really the best outcome.

It's supposed  to rain later - but as the forecast has been consistently 100% wrong every day for a week - I'll take that with a pinch of salt - quite a nice day by the look of it.

Realised this morning as I caught sight of myself as I was leaving the house, I've grown a full beard without realising. It's all grey. Will have to get rid of it later.