Wednesday, 31 October 2007

Old Gits Growing Older and Less Gracious

I'm off out to a gig in a minute or sixty. The two main dudes of the band, a brash loud affair no doubt, were in a band with me for 11 years. I gave in because my crushed ego couldn't take it any more. They carried on cos they are less egotistical and until recently when one of them fathered a child, neither were dads.

It's gonna be a bit like watching your old girlfriend dance with her new guy. However, I shan't envy them carrying all that nasty 1960's heavy muvvafukka equipment back into the van and home.
No doubt I'll find it within my bigheaded capabilities to be able to criticise the bass player. Drummers rarely impress beyond the fact that I can't do it for real, only in my head.

The Guitarist, Sol, is the best I've ever played alongside. Nobody can stump Baz for his enthusiasm and grit, not to mention fuck off bar chord mania.
I can't be arsed with all that dressing up for Halloween either. What a grumpy old sod I've become.

No matter, a couple of beers and all will seem cordial, loud and fluffy. Let's just try to keep a lid on the hooch guzzling though. Hangovers are such a bore at work.

Tuesday, 23 October 2007

Walks Among the Wild Folk

Not long ago, in a land called Brigstocke, I went on a journey to a faraway unusual landscape. Deep in this landscape lived a great many beautiful beings. These beings are known historically and up to this very day as 'trees'. Trees are unusual creatures in that they all huddle together. When they do so, we humans call them a 'forest' or 'wood'.

The wood is a wonderful magical arena of smells and sights many of us puny humans are not likely to witness in the third dimension, or actuality, as they are often difficult to see from the safety and seclusion of our 'sofas'.

I have included some rare photos of 'forests' to show the Lesser Spotty Couch Potato exactly what they may be missing. Look, if you will, at the variety of green colours and brown tints in just one frame.

I know, it's difficult to believe isn't it. Sometimes, deep inside these verdant playpens, it is possible to catch sight of small creatures who come to visit in order to avail themselves of the magnificence therein.On this occasion, I was lucky enough to capture a pair of such playpals, unaware of my presence, probably in some sort of trance. This is another rare and magical image of just what may be expected around any corner.

Just look at the social, almost human nature and stance of these two forest animals as they forage for food. Or at least, that's what I suppose they were up to. Oh, the misleading power that is anthropomorphosis.

I spent several hours tracking these most elusive of creatures. Every time I thought I had them pegged, they used some form of distraction technique, and just vanished into the canopy.

I tried several of my bushcraft skills to gain their confidence, until eventually, I actually got one of them to nervously take a tortilla wrap from my hand. What an incredible privilege!

This for me was proof positive that the conservation of these astonishing beasts' natural habitat is of paramount import to, not only their survival, but perhaps the benefit of all of us as we dodge the traffic and live our sedentary and oh so complex lives.

One day, when I've saved up or stolen enough of other peoples' money, I hope to return to this fantastic land, this oasis of life as we imagine in our wildest dreams.

Until then, I'll just have to gaze fondly upon these images and think of the times I spent in the company of these little hooded characters.

Thursday, 18 October 2007

Glorious Food and Smug Cook of the Day

An expedition to a well known supermarket that naked chefs go to is usually a glance into how the other half live. I took the glance on the off chance it would be less crowded after England got turned over by Russia.

Some of the food is bog standard, and some is kinda better looking than it's counterparts in other local outlets. There were on this occasion lots of "knockdown eat within 24 hours" fresh organic bits and bobs. I gathered many into the basket, cantered over to the wine section, grabbed a bottle and zoomed home. Being a total penny pincher, I calculated I had just got about £20 worth of good food for about £4. Result! I started tucking into the Aussie red plonk, remarkably better than the price would suggest, by way of a celebration.

I've been preparing food for three days at work. I have to say that today was the first time I've actually felt largely in control of the utterly hectic process that is fast food to order. Just cos it's fast, don't mean it's bad. There's no "Mc" about it. So today was a good day. And the sun shone bright upon the city's usual urban glower.

Once home, knowing that tomorrow is the start of my 4 day weekend, I can expend energy on other stuff. I can enjoy a languid soak in the tub. I've done my parental duty writing a covering letter to the school admissions board assertively pointing out that they must put my son into a certain school in order to preserve the quite complex family dynamic. Fat chance of them actually listening, but hey, you gotta try.

And so on to the evening meal. My boy just got a large fresh salad of mange tout, baby sweetcorn, red pepper, shredded little gem, organic vine tomato, grated carrot and courgette and onion. There was a basil garnish and olive oil and balsamic English mustard dressing. This was served with fresh spinach and ricotta tortellini and for a bit of protein a boiled free-range egg, perfectly cooked for a change, sliced and scattered over the salad. There was also a banana and strawberry bio-yoghurt milkshake with crushed ice and a dash of fresh squeezed organic lime juice. AND one of those funky bendy roller-coaster shaped straws to try to suck it through.

Bloggers and readers of the world, if you went into your local cafe/deli and sat down to this, if I may say so myself, you would probably be impressed a tiny bit. Remember, this is a child I'm cooking for here, and the reward I get is to see the plate empty and a cheery face hung over it.
Apart from that, it would set you back a prettier penny than that which I lavished upon it.

Sometimes, being a smug bastard is not wrong, you know. I believe it could also be called getting something right, enjoying doing it, and ticking one of the myriad boxes in life with vim and aplomb for a change.

Tuesday, 9 October 2007

Phwish, peeyoo!

Just a quickie tonight. I've just been shopping and was forced into agreeing to take my 10 year old son to 'toys r us' to buy Ben 10 action figures. Being an affable and at times malleable little chap, we negotiated that I would, on this occasion, pay for one of the toys if he payed for the other one and also did the washing up, wiped down the kitchen tops, and swept the floor. 15 minutes easy work for £4 worth of toy. I don't get paid that much!! Though I have to say, if my bank balance read 1234.47 tiddlywinks I'd struggle at most retail outlets not to mention the boozer.

He did the work, we duly hit the road on the lookout for bits of shaped coloured plastic. It's his latest obsession, replacing the remarkably long lived Dr. Who bits of shaped coloured plastic. Before them it was Lord of the Rings, Pirates of the Caribbean. The list is seemedly endless.

However, he gets great mileage out of these things and so keeps himself to himself playing all over the place. Whatever happened to conkers? And those hoops for rolling along the lane with a stick that would see road calamity in the modern era?

He keeps himself to himself in all aspects except one. He can't stop making all the dialogue for these guys. His Dalek impersonation is reaching folklore proportions at school I imagine. Fair enough, you can't build a plot with no dialogue terribly easily. And believe me, there is one hell of a plot going on in his multi-faceted mind of cartoonesque mayhem. And alongside the dialogue, he does all the onomatapoeic movement and action noises too. Phwish! is his all time favourite. Peeyoo! runs a reasonable second place. Pbbwwuurggh! for explosions and so on until my throat would hurt. His goes on from dawn 'til dusk on some days.

Tonight, I said he could get the thingies out of the packet in the car. As soon as the noise of crunching packaging stopped, the action began, opening with, of course, Phwish as the latest alien jettisons onto the arena of good verses evil to which it has been assigned. I fought back the tears of mirth as I drove down to a supermarket to shop for far less exciting things. I made him leave the toys in the car. He really is an absolute pest with them supermarkets. Intergalactic hostilities among the cornflakes threatening collateral damage across aisle 23, the jam section. A sticky conflict that could turn out to be, I can tell you.

Still, it's all in his head. He never displays any violence anywhere real, which is a blessing. Like him really, the greatest blessing I ever had bestowed upon me, my wacky, weird baby.

Now the wacky weird baby's oddball dad must go, off to make an important phone call. Wish me luck. Bye.