Week from Monday 1st October 2012

I had a sudden urge to "JAM WITH MYSELF" over the weekend, so I spent a fun afternoon noodling about in 7/8 time. At one point I was dangerously close to sounding like CAN, then it was a bit too obviously CRIMSO... but I stripped it all back to just the drums and started again and the net result is something a bit more MATH-ROCK. Or maybe even MATH-JAZZ? The bass is crap and the piano is a bit sloppy around the edges, but I suppose that at least proves it was played by a human being instead of a machine. It might eventually form the basis of "SOMETHING". I did an edit, over which I overdubbed some Russian talk radio clips, which seemed to kinda-sorta work in an abstract kinda-sorta way... so I've posted that on M'Space for now until the muse takes me further...

Lots of opportunity to get drenched again this week...

As if by some strange and terrifying magic - oh, alright then, coincidence - SERIF are now asking people to review their products in several words or less... As I did precisely that last week, albeit without a word restriction, I just used my allotted space to post a link to my blog instead, which is a far more thorough and comprehensive overview than I could cram into an entry box. I do realise that this ploy probably disqualifies me from the free draw. Whether anyone from the Serif concern will take the trouble to read it all, or post any sort of comment, remains to be seen. But I really think that they should be made aware that their otherwise delightful WEBPLUS X6's declared mission statement of "PROFESSIONAL QUALITY WEBSITES MADE EASY - NO KNOWLEDGE OF HTML NECESSARY", is no longer the case, if a MOBILE website is to be your aim.

Week from Monday 8th October 2012

A good weekend for leftfield arty cinema. I bought STEVEN WILSON's "Insurgentes" and "Get All you Deserve" DVDs and immersed myself in LASSE HOILE's fantastic, scratchy, jumpy cinematographic style. I've only just scratched (ha!) the surface, but the film to accompany the BASS COMMUNION & PIG improv is particularly trippy. Definitely best after dark...

...Then on Saturday night, the Beeb showed the newly restored "MAGICAL MYSTERY TOUR" and a "Story Of..." documentary to go with it. It is a matter of public record that I am a complete (or should that be 'compleat'?) UNBELIEVER where The Beatles are concerned, but I think that musically and artistically, "MMT" was THE BEST THING THEY EVER DID BY A LONG MILE. Besides, it had the BONZO DOG DOO-DAH BAND and IVOR CUTLER in it. Even in this post-MTV era, now that 'music video' is part of the furniture, you can still see why it caused such a fuss in Middle England ("What was all THAT about...?" "There's no STORY to it..." "The BBC should be ashamed of itself..." etc.) when it was first broadcast on Boxing Day 1967, straight after the Val Doonican Show. It now looks pretty tame compared to, say, "HEAD" or "200 MOTELS". But The Fabs did it first, it pains me to admit!

"I'VE NEVER SEEN STAR WARS"... was a radio and TV show which involved celebrities chatting about (and then having a go at) those little life experiences which many of us may take for granted, but which have somehow passed them by. Well, obviously I HAVE seen "Star Wars" more times than I can count. But one item for my own list, should anyone have ever asked, would be that I'd never read anything by KURT VONNEGUT. I KNOW! he's supposed to be 'good', but I just never got around to it. His name came up in a quiz recently, so that prompted me to finally give him a go. I'm now reading his classic "SLAUGHTERHOUSE FIVE" (Hobson's choice, as that was the only one of his books in the diminishing local library). Loving it! Where's he's been all my life!?!

Expecting another last minute rush of POWERPOINT to the head any time now. UNCLE WILLY is due to give a fifteen-minute talk about JPEG 2000 COMPRESSION next week, only it hasn't been written yet...

DREAM DIARY... Staring at a white mouse running around on a white tray under a sunlamp for hours on end... so a 'WHITE' theme is what I'm saying then...

Week from Monday 15th October 2012

Powerpointing out of the way(?) for now, I went for ONE OF ME DAZE OUT... I hopped on a train to Chichester and spent a pleasurable afternoon wandering around the charity shops... as well as a certain record emporium, HELTER SKELTER RECORDS, which is in a secret hidden location behind an antique shop, such that you can never find it if you actually LOOK for it, you can only 'stumble' over it accidentally if you're NOT looking! I probably could have spent a whole afternoon JUST browsing (it's THAT kind of shop where you SEE things you LIKE), but I came away with a handful of JAZZYWAZZY shinythings:- BRAND X' "Xcommunication"; AL DI MEOLA's "Tour de Force Live!"; DUDU PUKWANA's "In The Townships"; JOE ZAWINUL's "My People"; none of which I'd encountered on CD before and each priced around the three-pound-fifty mark. Which was nice. I think I'll be coming back HERE again, now I know where to find it!

I stopped by at the PALLANT GALLERY to see what's happening. They are currently showing an exhibit of GWEN JOHN's paintings... but I'm not a big fan of her work, so I didn't linger (or pay to go in!).

This morning, over breakfast, I watched a rather excellent BBC documentary about KLEZMER music. The Beeb is always good at these sorts of things, but they tuck them away at the back of the schedules somewhere and you can often miss them if you're not paying attention.

Went for a little LEGLY STRETCHINGTON into town to visit the library and to avail myself of some more KURT VONNEGUT. I'm becoming a fan. I found a collection of short stories called "Armageddon In Retrospect"... but my favourite waste of time today is trawling the SERIF FORUMS to see how other people are coping with WebPlus. I'm not the only one who has found that a little HTML knowledge goes a long way when finding workarounds for WebPlus' limitations. So much for their "Publish professional websites with no HTML experience necessary" claims...

Week from Monday 22nd October 2012

Feeling a little UNDER THE WEATHER (in every sense), but I'm forcing myself out of the door to go for another much-needed walkies (to the library to return that KURT VONNEGUT)... Worked up a nice head of steam and sweated it out a bit... This week's reading choice: I shall start on another volume of CHARLAINE HARRIS from the pile on the shelf.

The "40th Anniversary" edition of "LARKS' TONGUES IN ASPIC" has finally arrived... but just to give it that added sense of occasion, I've decided I'm not going to open it until XMAS! Besides, 'as enny fule kno', the ACTUAL fortieth anniversary isn't until NEXT year (they started working on it in Command Studios on 1st January 1973, trivia fans).

On Saturday, I went to the RECORD FAIR in Southampton, but it proved to be a big disappointment this time around. I didn't find a single solitary item on my "WANTS" list. There was plenty to cater for the vinyl enthusiast, but I am decidely not one of those. But in HMV, I did get me a 'proper' copy of CAN's "Soundtracks" album, plus a rather good DR JOHN anthology, on a "TWO FOR A TENNER" basis. Music Club's ridiculously cheap "Dr John: The Best Of The Night Tripper" includes the WHOLE of his (still astonishing) 1968 debut album and a lot more besides. I forgot to present my HMV STORE CARD in the shop, but the lady assured me that I could add the points to my credit via their website. This morning I tried to do just that... but the instructions on the 'help' pages refer to elements that no longer appear to be on the user interface. Where is the "VALIDATE A RECEIPT" button? Where is there an "HMV REWARDS CLUB" tab? Where, for that matter, is the "TRANSACTION HISTORY" page now, eh? They've obviously changed the site, but forgot to update the 'help' pages to match. So, long story short, I don't SEE a way to add my points online!

Week from Monday 29th October 2012

The evenings are getting colder very quickly. Last night, I dragged out my portative radiator for the first time.

In a last ditch, FIN DE SIECLE attempt to provoke a reaction - PLEASE!!! ANY SORT OF REACTION!!! - from the dwindling FriendSpace, I decided to use that discarded and dysfunctional blogpage (which I'd sworn I wouldn't ever need again) to [re]post chapter one of "ANARCHAEOLOGY", our enormous dADa/mErZ collage of "everything that anyone has ever written ever".

This was an exercise that occupied me throughout the 1990s, whereby I endeavoured to TYPE OUT the entire contents of the Vicarage office's "SCARY SNAKES CUPBOARD", committing it all to floppy disk via our trusty old pizzabox AppleMac. Every discarded, disconnected snippet of paper which had on it freeform wordiness by Shelfy, Spot, GoldLamé, Janet, Snilt, Crab Boat Boy, yours Mintilly (and anyone else who ever passed through our portals) was copied and assembled into ONE HUGE AMORPHOUS BLOB OF POEMPROSE that would somehow gell together in book form for all to read, not that anyone else outside our circle would ever want to.

Subsequently, that bloke invented the internet and, ever at the forefront of modern technology, I posted the whole thing on "THE GRIDLER" website about ten years ago. When that fizzled out, I serialized it on my short-lived LiveJournal blog. No one ever noticed, apart from maybe SHELFY THE VANISHING BEAR himself and our dear transatlantic friend EVIL DEMENTED BUNNY.

Now it's my[_____]'s turn.

It seems that nowadays, as the last tumbleweeds blow across a dying my[_____], I can try posting just about ANYTHING on my stream in the near-certain knowledge that no one will ever leave ANY sort of comment. In the last few weeks, I've mentioned all sorts of things that interest ME; YouTube clips of thrilling musical sensations, political commentary pertaining to the PrezzyLection or the messed-up music industry, updates about IT concerns... I even resorted to posting cryptical, nonsensical non-sequiteurs and in-jokes, just so that someone - ANYONE?!? - would ask what the flip I'm talking about.

But Nothing. Nada. Nyetski. For weeks on end. Only very occasionally will a savvy chum (Hello Drude! Hi EP!) bother to enter into a short discourse on the subject in hand, before the item melts away with all the other fluffywuffy flotsam disappearing downstream.

Which is pointless.