22 12 2008

I have added a new page called Globetrotting, you can find it at the top.  At the moment it is just a list of where I have been, but at Some point I will add some photos to it.  Just thought you might like to know.


18 12 2008

It was the works christmas party last night.  Well yesterday afternoon, well it started at midday.  Anyway, we went to a restaurant called Oddballs, which John very, very kindly paid for (we reckon that the bill came to about £400) out of his own pocket.  We had secret Santa, and the present that I bought Mike went down a storm.  God bless Hawkins Bazaar and their robot claw.

So the party went on and I eventually goit in at about 10.30.  Unfortunately I had left my car at the office the night before so I had to ride my bike in.  It was quite nice to be out at that time of the morning, but I really feel like poo today.  Not been ill though.  Yet.

I posted that bit at abot 10 this morning, and now its nearly 3.  I don’t feel so bad now, the 2 bacon rolls from Greggs seemed to sort me out quite nicely.


Celebrity Call Centres

16 12 2008

When you are on the line to a call centre, wouldn’t it be great if there  was a celebrity on the other end of the line.  I mean a proper celebrity, not one of those pseudo celebrities that are crappy reality TV shows. 

Barry White would have been amazing for this, could you imagine the walrus of love trying to sort out your banking or car insurance. Sean Connery would be good too.  You would be bound to buy double glazing from him.  Isaac Hayes would be good too.  Imagine talking to Shaft. 

There you go, a bit random, but its late in the day and I am trying


16 12 2008

I went to see The Hold Steady on Sunday at the Wedgewood Rooms and I found myself in the position of being well below the average age of the fans (and they were fans).  There were a lot of 50 year olds there, some were probably well into their 60’s and above.  If my ears were ringing then theirs must have been, although I suppose that you can turn hearing aids off.

The band came on and played for an hour and a half non-stop.  They played songs from all of their albums and the ones that I knew well were played excellently.  Those that I didn’t know so well were also played well.  I suppose thats what happens when you have been around for years.  I had never really though about it before, but they were older than I thought they would be, but they were still bloody good.  The older crowd were pogoing like fools, their hips must ache now. 

Anyway here are some photos.

Dancing like your dad.

Dancing like your dad.


Sense of Pride

15 12 2008

So Chris Hoy is BBC Sports Personality of the Year, fantastic stuff there, the British Cycling Team is Team of the Year, coached by coach of the year.  You can’t deny that they aren’t brilliant.  They have deserved all of the plaudits that they receive, from the magnificent Olympics, to the world championships, and not forgetting Mark Cavendish in Le Tour (4 stage victories, next year it will be more) they have all had a fantastic year.

Chris Hoy wins Sports Personality of the Year

I would have liked Rebecca Adlington to come second, but  Lewis Hamilton had a fantastic year too, whether you like him or not (yes there is a lot of debate about whether Timo Glock gave him the championship, but hey, I don’t even like F1).

Still, Britains sporting endeavour this year more than ever has been something to be proud of .  Especially given the fact that the top sportsman  has thighs that are only an inch smaller than my waist.

As well as that, it also gives me the opportunity to post another gratuitous Victoria Pendleton photo as she collected the team award.

Victoria Pendleton who collected the Team Award

Victoria Pendleton who collected the Team Award

Talking of great British sporting achievements, no-one snatches defeat from the Jaws of Victory quite like the England Cricket Team.  Despite being ahead, we didn’t press home our advantage yet again and were taken apart by the batting of Sachin Tendulkar.  I for one will be glad when he retires, but you can guarantee theer will be someone to step into his place.


14 12 2008

Everyone who knows me well knows that  love a good cover version, which is why I was watching Orange unsignedAct with so much interest.  For those of you who don’t know this is like the X-Factor but not full of crappy pop acts.  They are real bands that write and play their own songs.  This week though the competition was particularly good as the judges including the lovely Lauren Laverne had asked the contestants to do a cover version.

There were some particularly good ones including a rather good version of Blue Monday and a pop punk version of Take on Me. 

The stand out by a mile was from Tommy Reilly, the rather wonderful Scottish Singer Songwriter (Think busker with better lyrics) playing Mr Brightside, a tune that is fairly heavily led by guitars.  Stood on the stage behind a piano, the guy played an absolute stormer.  It was brilliant, so here it is for you.  I hope that you enjoy it as much as I did.


11 12 2008



1. cowering fear; state of great fright or terror.
2. a dejected mood: He’s been in a funk ever since she walked out on him.

As I am not cowering in fear, I guess that 2. is the right definition for me.  Its as good as any really.  I mean, I have been fed up, its unsurprising really, at the start of the year I had a job that I enjoyed and paid lots, then I had a job that paid lots but sucked, then I didn’t have any job, then I had temp jobs and now I have a job that I like that doesn’t pay a lot. 

All throughout this timeI have had a lot of support from really good friends who unfortunately live too far away, so I don’t get to see them that often.  As more and more of themn get married off and start to have kids I will see them less and less now.  My mood is never helped by lonliness and boredom and never will be I suppose.  I hate the feeling of being hemmed in and with nothing exciteing on the horizon I generally feel really low.

Things however are looking up, I have made some good friends this year, who,  shock horror, actually live in the same city.  Now in a fit of boredom one lunchtime at work I have booked myself a holiday.  I had tried to get one over new year but I couldn’t find anything that I wanted to do for a price that I could afford, until I found this. 

I am going on Safari, in a 13 day overland tour that takes in Kenya (Masai Mara, Ngorogoro crater) mainland Tanzania (The Serengeti National Park) and the Island of Zanzibar where I can chill on a beach or go swimming with Dolphins.  The only trouble is that this is 23 weeks away, which is far too long for me to wait.  Its nearly half a year, but the speed that this year has gone by in it should only seem like 3 months at the most.

I don’t know if this will actually drag me out of the mire of terminal boredom and  general unhappiness, but its worked for the time being and I am rather excited.

1 Point In It

10 12 2008

Our Pub Quiz team seems to be settling down a bit (we were called Leered at By Russians last night).  It consists of myself , Andy and Stu from flat 6, Afro Aid (He is growing a ginger Afro) and Dave.

We were let down by our knowledge of photos of famous people as children (It was Eminem and not Peter Crouch), and if we had listened to Afro Aid we would have got the one extra point that we needed to draw for first place. 

We are getting better though.  The first week we came 7th, then third last week now second, I think that we may actually win one at some point.


9 12 2008
I own about 700 albums, and I wouldn’t say that any of them were what would e socially thought of as “Pop” music. In my eyes there is a time and a place for Pop music and it is at 14 year old girls birthday parties. But there was a time when it meant popular. This was back when the charts meant something, when you had to sell more than 4 singles to get in the charts. A time when Top of The Pops got 8 million viewers a week to see all sorts of bands, making music that was popular, it didn’t matter whether it was rock and roll, disco, or blues it was popular and people wanted to see it.
Now would you call The Killers “Pop” I guess not, how about Kanye West, that would be a no too. Going back a few years would anyone describe Radiohead, Oasis or Blur Pop, I don’t think so. How about Nirvana or even the Sex Pistols. All of these have had number one albums that have sold millions of copies, but none of them would be described as “Pop”. Kurt Cobain would probably turn in his grave if he though his music was “Pop”. The second highest selling album of all time is Back in Black by AC/DC. I am one of the 50 million people that own this album and its not pop.
The alternative to Pop is, well, Alternative. Its everything not popular, it’s supposed to be the stuff that that the fat beardy muso’s listen to in the bedrooms of their mums houses. But it’s not, genre’s are where its at now.
For some reason genres have taken over and bands are being pigeonholed into smaller and smaller genres.  Take Metal as an example, as a genre you could say that this is pretty easy to define, but you can break this down even further into many different genres.  Death Metal, Nu-Metal, Hardcore, Darkcore, Thrash, Stoner, Folk, Glam, Industrial, Extreme, Progressive, Alterative to name but a few, and thats not even going into the crossover genres.  It seems that every band is trying to carve out their own niche and now this meansd inventing a new genre.  Next time someone tells you they are “like, well into avant-progressive rock”  (i.e. Animal Collective), tell them to fuck off as its alternative.

Bad Nostalgia

8 12 2008

It’s happening again, I can’t sleep. Bad Nostalgia hits me everytime I try and sleep. My head gets caught up in vivid daydreams of bad jobs, ex girlfriends and mistakes I have made in the past. Sometimes a mixture of all of them.

This leaves me not only physically tired but emotionally ratty too. If I have been a pain in the arse for the last
few weeks then I apologise.

It really doesn’t help when I have dissappointment in my life everytime I try and do something good. Take last week, when I tried to book a holiday over new year. Went in one day and was told it was fine, as I had to book time off work the next day I went in again to confirm it only to be told that bookings had closed. So I spent the afternoon in a maudlin state on my own which probably didn’t help matters. Anyway, drifting off topic.

The only good thing about not being able to sleep is that I have got a lot of reading done. I have finally finished Tropic of Capricorn, I read the Gum Thief by Douglas Coupland (Far from his best), America Unchained by Dave Gorman and am getting close to the end of Everything is Illuminated (love the film, but the book is dull as hell).

There you go.