Sunday 31 May 2015

Why did the hens cross the road?

It was Race Day and the sun was shining. But it wasn't just race goers who piled off the train in their droves in search of an early doors drink; there were more hen parties in town than you could shake a shitty stick at. How some of them would have made it beyond sundown is a mystery - many would have been early fallers long before teatime. But despite many wearing heels higher than your average house and L plates being the accessory of choice, it looked like most of them would have been worth an each way bet on staying the course.

Friday 29 May 2015

One song to the tune of another

The Man in Black
The Other Man In Black
MashUps: regular readers will know I'm rather partial to them. The Number One Son, on the other hand, can't abide them; that said, he does rather like that one where Hall and Oates get jiggy with Metallica.

I think he may like this one too. As with a lot of them I put up here, this one's been out a while but I've come to it late. Ring of Smoke (see what they did there?) is very clever, not least because they've dispensed with that riff: you know, the one played by the (other) man in black - the one they don't allow you to play in guitar shops. And yet it works. Perfectly.

Sunday 24 May 2015

Loved the book

I've just read Romany and Tom by Ben Watt. I took it on holiday and devoured it in two sittings. I doubt very much if there has been a finer book written about parents from the perspective of their offspring.

From Watt's preface: We only see the second part half of our parents' lives - the downhill part. The golden years we have to piece together. It's hard to think of our parents as young - or maybe I mean young adults - when everything was stretched out in front of them and was possible. The versions of them we we see and judge everyday have been shaped by experiences they've had, but which we have never known: the times they were hurt; the days they won; the times they compromised. For much of it we were simply not there.
We need to read the things they will eventually throw away, to listen out for the offhand remark and the moments of lucidity. We might even learn something. About them. And ourselves.

I was so moved by this book that I got it into my head that I must contact Ben Watt: I know, I'll write him a letter. I'll tell him just how moving I found it and how well written it was. How well researched it was.  How so many references struck a chord with me. And that I think he's brilliant and everything. In fact just how he describes in the book where, on a family holiday in 1971, Watt found himself staying in the same hotel as his hero, Peter Osgood. Watt went up to the Chelsea and England centre forward and told him how big a fan he was, about the replica Number Nine shirt he owned, the posters on his bedroom wall, how great his recent Cup Final diving header was. And everything. Osgood, non plussed, just looked down at him and said 'Oh, yeah?'

I may just send him a Tweet instead. 'Loved the book' it will probably say.

Thursday 14 May 2015

O brother, where art thou?

I read the news today (Oh, Boy) and was mildly alarmed to read that Liam Gallagher thinks he can 'get the band back together' without Noel. Hmmm: what Liam Gallagher is blissfully unaware of is that he's a Number Two. In the same way that Art Garfunkel is a Number Two. And John Oates.

Unlike Liam, I have a soft spot for his big brother. Noel is the brains behind the operation. Without Noel there isn't an Oasis. Without Noel it's just another Beady Eye. Or worse, a Beady Eye tribute band, And as any right minded individual will tell you, the best part of any Oasis gig was always in the interval when Liam and his cronies went to the bar for twenty minutes, leaving Noel out front sat on a stool playing his acoustic.

Sunday 10 May 2015

A day at the seaside

Yesterday's trip to the seaside was a joy from start to finish. From the mug of builders tea in the railway station caff to the last beer 'for the road', we saw the sights and then some.

A wedding on the beach, beer with disturbing pumpclips, fright wigs, fish and chips, gulls from hell, telephone boxes that worked, a madly in love couple playing cards and road signs that, not to put too fine a point on it, look like kn*bs. A fun day out. Thanks to Posh Bird and Boss Man - our pacemakers for the day.

Wednesday 6 May 2015

I'm looking for the wessel

It was Saturday lunchtime and Lee and I were blowing the froth off a couple of cold ones, when in walks a total stranger and makes his way to our table. He reached for his inside pocket and pulled out a faded black and white photograph. Pictured was a very old ship. 'I'm looking for the vessel' he said pointing at the photo profusely. 'Do you know where it went down?' I looked at Lee. Lee looked at me.

If only he'd been Russian and couldn't pronounce his Vs.

Tuesday 5 May 2015

All that money and they live like pigs

Trough not pictured
A little over ten years after the publication of Animal Farm and two young piglets, in true Orwellian style, took over the nation's TV screens and refused to budge. However, unlike Napoleon and Snowball, Pinky & Perky made a right song and dance about it. Week in, week out.

They even predated the Now That's What I Call Music brand by releasing their own versions of the hits of the day. In 1974, just when you thought Paper Lace had scraped the bottom of the MOR barrel with Billy Don't Be A Hero, our two little piggies took it to market and then put it through their very own sausage machine.

Saturday 2 May 2015

I want to ride my bicycle (but not in lycra)

The lovely Heidi

We had the Tour de Yorkshire pass through our region yesterday. The whole town saw fit to deck itself out in blue and yellow - the race's colours: even the sheep. The sprint stage was at the rear of our local, so it was only a hop skip and a jump from my bar stool to watch the ten seconds of action and return to my beer. In that ten seconds I managed to get a photo of the leading bunch. Note to self: lycra is not a good look.