This must be Thursday…

‘I never could get the hang of Thursdays.’

I have to admit I often feel the same way about the day dedicated to the Norse God of Thunder. Of course, Arthur Dent was going through a few life-changing events when he uttered those words. We could get all philosophical and discuss that every moment of existence is life-changing but perhaps I’ll leave that to another post.

Simple life

My life continues to change and it seems every day brings some new challenge or milestone. I am still unsure where I am heading and what I will be doing. However, this has helped me to feel a lot more content with what I have and where I am. 

Although not necessarily a Thursday, this day was quite an adventure for St Francis of Assisi who died today 787 years ago, on 3rd October 1226. His devotion to the simple life and poverty, along with many of the other monastic orders, is quite inspiring. It is such a pity that, as with many organisations, adherence to their rules waned with time.

Poetry and creativity

Today is also, so I’m informed, National Poetry Day. In honour I wrote my own little piece and have posted it on my creative journal

My time has been very creative recently, spending time on a creative challenge to write, record and share a collection of songs written on the ukulele. The challenge hasn’t been a complete success as I missed my deadline, but I am very happy with what I have so far. And I will be sharing what I have done soon.

Thursdays: perhaps not so bad

Despite being awake before 5 am and unable to get to sleep for a while. Despite the rain pouring outside. Despite not knowing the road I want to travel. Things are good. I am content. 

An insignificant review of 2012

i photoshop, therefore i am

i photoshop, therefore i am

To sum up my 2012 in one sentence would be; the year that things began to change, or transition. Transition is a better word, it implies controlled and positive change. After 16 years working for one organisation, the opportunity to leave was offered, and I took it. Before I left I was offered a new part-time role and with the rest of my time I am preparing some very exciting ventures.

2012 saw me become debt free. This has been a long-term goal, caused by long-term stupidity. My transition into next year will be to not be stupid!

TV

I don’t watch a great deal of (current) TV, but I do tend to watch series. 2012 finally saw me watch The Sopranos and The Wire. Two great series that kept throwing surprises. The Killing III was also good, with a really shocking ending.

Movies

Nothing really stood out for me this past year. I watched Prometheus, having waited over 30 years for Ridley to finally get around to making it. I liked it, in fact really liked it, however there was one major problem, and this has been something that has annoyed me with most films recently. The trailer of the movie told me pretty much the whole story. When it came to seeing the actual film, there was little left to make me wonder what going on, and engage me. I hope this is a trend that will soon disappear.

At the very end of the year I got to see The Avengers… brilliant, another fun flick from Mr Joss Whedon.

Books

Again I was catching up on the book front. I read the complete back catalogue of Chuck Palahniuk, and overall that was really good. One surprise was Old Man’s War by John Scalzi, it was lent to me and I thoroughly enjoyed it. Perhaps I was sci-fi deprived at the time, but I recommend it.

Music

I continued my descent into the world of John Darnielle and The Mountain Goats. I saw him perform with Anonymous 4 at The Barbican and that was quite amazing. I also caught Frank Turner at Oxford doing a great live show. I missed out on seeing Dead Can Dance, but the album made up a little for that.

Apps

Back in February I enjoyed taking part in FAWM, a social songwriter’s event where participants write 14.5 songs during the month of February. I took part and completed the challenge. But the writing was made significant.y easier by a wonderful app on the iPad and iPhone called Songwriter HD. This simple app allows you to jot ideas for lyrics and record bits via the microphone. It’s nice and simple, but perfect. Exactly what a good app should be.

UKPLC

I am not a royalist or a fan of the Olympics. With the year being dominated by the Queen’s jubilee and London 2012, it was difficult to avoid both of these events. However, it was nice to see a country, that 12 months before had been shocked by inner city riots, being proud. More importantly being proud without being arrogant.

2012 was a good year, although looking at what I have written above, I think I need to record things a little better. This was the first year in several where I haven’t kept a diary, perhaps I need to buy another Moleskine.

2013

So unto 2013 I go. I know there will be several more transitions ahead, many already in motion. But it is my story. Story is my word of focus on 2013, but that is another post.

Spring break

It’s that time of year again when I get to take a day or two off. This year I’m determined to get on with a few things. That could mean either one or two things. This blog may well go crazy with post after post about deep and meaningful insights. Or, I may go dark, like Jack Bauer in any series of 24 that you want to think of.

I have one or two things I want to do. Primarily getting the ‘music’ back on track. However, I have a feeling that DIY and various other home duties may take a lead.

But why music, what is the appeal of being creative in this way? I’m not sure, but when I am tinkering with music, it is one of the few times when I feel totally alive. It could be the realisation of some existential longing within. A longing that is sadly rarely met in my spiritual journey.

That just for one or two moments I am able to connect with the creator, through the act of creativity.

For that moment, I’ll take as much DIY as is required.

Songs / voices in my head

One of the most annoying things in life (for me) is hearing a song in the morning and then being unable to get it out of my head for the whole of the day. Today it got worse. The next stage of this really annoying thing is to wake up with a song in your head. So the first thought you have in the day is a blast of Madonna’s Into the groove going round and round in your head. This is what happened to me, and is most upsetting.

I was concerned that it would be with me all day, however I was wrong. Within a few minutes of doing last night’s washing up (yeah I know, very lazy) I had the title track of Richard O’Brien’s follow up to the Rocky Horror Picture Show, Shock Treatment running through my head. While this isn’t really too much of a problem I later thought that I had only seen Shock Treatment once, and I am now unsure as to whether I had the right song in my head, or whether I had subconsciously written something new.

Cacti got my tongue

My fingers are reasonably long, friendly relatives have previously said they are piano playing fingers. However, this has not proved true… I can’t play the piano apart from bashing out a few chords, the lead and bass lines of Kraftwerk’s Das Model (showing off with my linguistic skills there) and experimental riffs that Ross Geller would be proud of.

My fingers are definitely not green. The garden that I tend (ha – I use hay fever as an excuse) is a mixture of lawn, concrete and weeds. Many a time I have bought a house plant to add that eco feel to the living space and many a time they have died, usually in a long drawn out process that I have been unable to stem. If there was an RSPCP association I am sure they would have convicted me.

Nevertheless I have once again ventured into the house plant arena and bought a cactus. I have a picture below, enjoy it while it lasts.

The year of 2007

It was a summer that we will remember for not happening, for never arriving. However, one weekend the summer did arrive and we took a trip to the coast. On the journey we listened to the audio version of Sepulchre by James Herbert, which was nice. When this got a little too heavy we put on Radio Two, and we heard the classic Nancy Sinatra track Summer Wine. (I say classic but I had never heard it before)

Now we liked this track and so when we got home we searched for it, found out who it was and then went to youtube :-) And that is where we found this version, which is quite good, and which I would like to share with you.


PS, I don’t particularly like the Corrs and U2 are a little hit and miss with me, but together this really works.