Herne Hill – Half Moon!

Its New Years Eve, and I just woke up from a good nights dreaming with this song in my head.

What the? That’s Whitney Houston! I’m really not a fan – so what could instill such hubris?

Well, I had been going through some old photos, looking for pictures of the Mystery Girls, to add to my live video I was uploading, I knew they were in the photo draw, but its all shuffled up, so I had to see others from those days when we still took photos and put them away someplace.

So whats the deal with the Mystery Girls? Well they came to Bedford a couple of times, and I thought they were just great, so when I saw them advertised playing in London, I was happy to go and see them there on the motorbike. I probably saw them 3 or 4 times, they used to play the Fulham Greyhound, that was a place I went to a dozen or more times in the 80’s, always had a good time there. 

My photos and footage!

Of course you don’t have to watch it – I put it up for anyone who remembers those great party nights – if they still remember! 🙂 

With our gang, we usually went to the Hammersmith Palais, all get heinously and roaring drunk, go by train, it was super fun, but when I went to the Greyhound, I often went alone, or with a friend, on the motorbike, and not drink at all, or just one “road legal” drink.

One time, we went to see the Mystery Girls at the Half Moon pub in Herne Hill, I liked that, it rolls off the tongue! As it turned out, it was a great place, you had to walk for a mile or 2 from the nearest tube to get there, so we must have gone on the train if we were doing that. 

Here’s a picture of the boozer!

You have to remember it would have been night time!

I don’t remember who went with me, I think I was the only one of my friends who really liked them. Perhaps a couple of my punk friends came along, thinking oh, its some gay thing he likes – they were cool about me being gay, even though I wasn’t, and I wasn’t anyhow, I just liked a lot of gay things – lol, I might have been with my best friend, who happened to actually be gay, but he didn’t really like the Mystery Girls either, he probably thought they were a bit irritating, we didn’t know he was gay at the time – so it must have been a big secret for him, or perhaps he didn’t know either? He knew later, cos he came out about it, but either way, it was a great night IMO.

This Whitney song tho, I thought of that after seeing all those other faces from that era, (while I was sorting through my photos I mean obvs) this girl I liked, I was besotted with her for a few years, she was my mates GF, but she was very nice to me, so I have some wonderful memories of her, then there was this other one, she was lovely too, only now do I realise how hard she tried on my behalf, why do people do that? Its a miracle really, as I was just thinking yesterday, you know the basic human can’t change, and yet, as Guru Murti says, by a miracle of love they can. Thats all we have, a miracle isn’t much to go on, and yet they do exist.

So I was thinking back then, I couldn’t take this one home to mum, so it wasn’t that kind of fantasy, but then on the other hand, mum quite likes a rebel – maybe that would have gone down quite well? I felt the other one I could take home sort of girl, she was so beautiful, inside and out, but then you never know what kind of mood they’re going to be in, the lovely girlfriend or the mum, they’re all of them prone to lunacy IMO. ❤

The moon was big here last night – and very bright!

Bit of a kind of pointless post! :D

Thats the cat gone out in the rain – she’s been thinking about it for hours, and I knew she really wanted to go, she just needed a little push! LOL No, I didn’t make her go, I just give her a little touch under her belly, and she’ll go if she’s ready – cos she don’t really like a belly tickle, less so than going out in the rain anyhow!

Its been raining for hours, my home town, Bedford, is underwater, there’s been flooding on the news, its pretty bad, it always was when I was growing up there, so they put in a lot of engineering to overcome it, but now it seems the freakish global warming has overtaken them again. I remember years ago seeing some cars sunk in the flood waters, if you can’t see the road, you shouldn’t try to drive through it – not really, oh, its so risky – where is the ditch at the edge of the road? Are you going into it? Wouldn’t it have been wiser to take a detour? Humans are such fun though, I’m just the same – you know, I reckon I can drive through that flood water and not be washed away to certain death! Whoops! (No one has died as far as I know)

The rain continues to pitter patter on the pane, I shall soon go and see if the cat wants to come back in – she just needed to relieve herself!

My parents have been called up for the covid vaccine – hoorah! The government are on the ball for once!

Whats going to be new in 2021? We shall see I guess.

I finished reading David Sedaris “Calypso” that man is a hoot!

Xmas was moderate, I don’t care for it much, its ok, I don’t like New Years much either, it makes for some good TV and movies, I like a good santa story, or a New Years eve party – in a movie, but not in real life! Fuck no! LOL I jest, I love parties, and party people, but only in small doses.

Cats not coming in – its chucking it down, she must have gone for a walk, or else she’s under the car, try again shortly . . 

Saw some footage of some guy on a bicycle, peddling through the floods – I loved to do the same – I would bike through a mile of floodwater back in my time in Bedford, I preferred that risky route to the main road, with all the traffic, but if I’d fell off, into deeper water, and been washed into the river, what a fool I would have felt – and yet, I’d do it again! It was s beautiful to be in nature, the road, its full of cars and pollution, the riverside, its lovely, and not dangerous if there’s no flood, when there is a flood, its still beautiful – but so dangerous – water, its dangerous stuff you know – can’t really argue with it – Its cold, its wet, and there’s a lot of it! Ducks like it, and swans and fish, humans think they like it, oh, there’s the cat! I’m of to bed! 😀

Streamlines!

I have a lot of time on my hands to think lately, due to the Covid, I spend more time at work, but not so much working, as just minding the place – so anyhow, I was just thinking back to when I was a motorbike despatch rider, this particular scene often springs to mind, one really cold day in winter, I was riding down near Maple Cross, it was a bottle neck for traffic, everyone heading west towards Heathrow had to go through Maple Cross, the M25 wasn’t even built yet – its hard to believe there was a time when there was no M25! (The M25 is a circular motorway around outer London for those who don’t know) Today its 3 or 4 lanes wide, and thousands of vehicles thunder around it at 70mph, but back then, they were just building it. The M40 motorway comes into London from Oxford or someplace – I never went on it, but I would have to go under it on the outer circular route, I’d often have to take documents to Heathrow, anyhow, cos of the roadworks for the coming M25, Maple Cross was all traffic cones and diversions, there was this thick metal plate over a hole in the road, and I’d have to ride over it – it was real slippy, and quite dangerous for a motorbike, having only 2 wheels makes it dangerous, cos if you slide in a car, you don’t necessarily come a cropper – whereas on 2 wheels, you almost certainly will fall off! So anyway, I never fell off, but that scene just stuck in my mind, I’d battle the elements to take these parcels through the wind and rain, cold snow and ice even, over that metal plate where the future world was under construction. 

Well there was no mobile phones or GPS back then, you went off on your journey with your paper map, and you had to pull over and take out that map, and figure out if you were going the right way or not – tell me more grandad! Is it really true? So thats what I was reminiscing about at work while I was waiting around, how much things have changed since that time. I looked it up, and it must have been around 1985, cos the motorway opened in 86. So I was thinking, back then, I was just some young guy making a few quid, struggling and being ripped off, putting myself at risk to do a job I loved, but really, I was helping to build the world we have today – such as it is. I was like an ant on that hill, toiling away, I think maybe they should give me a medal, or something, ok, I didn’t invent the GPS and the mobile phone, or email, back then we had to shift everything by hand, and though there was heavy traffic, now there’s got to be at least 20 times as much, travelling twice as fast on massive roads, its almost like the difference between horse and carts and modern transport. 

It was a dull day, icy rain was coming down in sheets, I was never sure if I was lost or not, couldn’t hardly see the roadsigns or anything, but when I get to Maple Cross, I knew I was going the right way cos all the dayglo cones and workers, the floodlighting and going under the newly built M40 bridge, and that big sheet of metal – it must have been 20 foot long, and a couple of inches thick, every car and lorry went over it with a rattle – it was covered in ice and frost, amazing I thought how strong that metal plate must be, how big it was, how was it put there? By a crane I suppose? A strange solution, why was that hole there anyhow? Couldn’t they do it safer than that? It was there for a couple of years. 

At the time, I never thought I’d look back on it and think I was doing anything other than riding about, trying to figure out how to get from A to B, and not falling off, I didn’t know that we collectively were building a metropolis, but look at us now, with our mobile phone, email, blogs, electronic media, digital this and that, and GPS! Wow! 

VNV Nation!

I was at this show Dec 29 2012 – pretty good night!

Seems hard to believe it was 8 years ago, and look at it all now, all locked down, no one allowed in or out of London due to the dreaded!

I was at this one in Sheffield too! Oh yeah!

Half the crowd went home, then they come back on and did this! It was a blast! 

😀 😀

Steven Craig Zahler

Content Warning – Lunatics!

I saw the film called “Bone Tomahawk” a few months ago on TV, It had Kurt Russel in it, so I thought it might be ok, it was extremely violent – it was a western, about these settlers who form a posse to go and visit these cannibalistic Indians and retrieve some lost citizens, things got out of hand and a lot of people got butchered – it was like a clash of cultures, and the two just weren’t able to coexist without madness and mayhem ensuing. I thought it was interesting, cos you didn’t feel like the Indians were the good guys, or the hard done by, they just were what they were, and the settlers too, also human, and prone to making bad decisions on the fly. Anyhow, its good, and worth checking out if you don’t mind a bit of ultra violence, the genre certainly has come a long way since John Wayne! I liked the Pierce Brosnan – Liam Neeson film “Seraphim Falls” That was good too. More surreal, and watchable because that surrealist approach distances the viewer, making everything more entertaining and palatable, the “Bone Tomahawk” one was better in that it confronts you with the sheer stupidity of human kind, and doesn’t spare you the guilt and responsibility for what we are.

Anyhow, last night they put on the film “Brawl in Cell Block 99” – I saw it a few months ago and it provoked thoughts, what were they trying to say? It seemed like a kind of Trump era movie, sort of strange kind of recognition for what we (America et.al) has become – greedy, patriotic, stupid, prone to violence, noble, self centred, individualistic and so on. Well, anyhow, I kind of liked it, its unusual for me to enjoy a film a redneck would enjoy – you know those silly Chuck Norris films that are always on? There’s bundles of them – all the same, lone tough guy, that sort of dizzy juvenile dream – well, in the film “Brawl in Cell Block 99” this tough guy, he’s got a cross tattooed on the back of his head, so he’s obviously got a religious / spiritual dimension to the character, also, he’s got an American flag outside his house, and a pregnant wife / girlfriend inside who he cares for. Very much so in fact, because when she is threatened, he goes nuts and kills a lot of people – and I do mean a lot! Its brutal! Anyhow, there’s other issues raised to do with race and gender, so its not like its a film made without thought – I watched it while doing online stuff, so I still feel like I haven’t really taken it all in properly, I don’t live quite like that guy in the film, so I don’t take it all that seriously, but I just wondered what this film says about American culture and where its at – and or going?

I did begin to take it more seriously after I looked up the director and found its by Steven Craig Zahler – same guy that did Bone Tomahawk! Now that is interesting, it adds credence to realise there’s a pattern to his work. 

Zahler has a third film out called “Dragged Across Concrete” now I want to see that too!

[Edit] If far in the UK – you can watch Brawl in Cell Block 99 on the Film4 catch up viewer – if you have the energy! 😀

It’s another great post!!

I don’t fink, people do things for the right reasons – or rather, I do think people do things for the right reasons! People that do really good things, do them for the right reasons, and other people think they know why those people did those things, but they don’t know what good reasons really consist of – so they try to emulate those people, for the wrong reasons, and sometimes are successful, (wrongly) sometimes not, (rightly) 

Ha, well it all depends on what you believe in – rightness, or wrongness! Its a tough one – whats right, and whats wrong? 

So whats this all about? I been struggling in my life, not immensely – just a little, but enough to find out a few things, such as, what is success, and what is merely emulation, Ok, I haven’t even got as far as emulation really at this point, merely being “mere” (which equates to pretty poorly), but at leat its real ok? 

I was just having some thoughts earlier, (in between doing stupid stuff) about how when something new comes along, like punk music, good example,  because all of a sudden, there were lots and lots of people jumping on the bandwagon, going oh yes, we’re a punk group now, it was a time of social change, and suddenly everyone wanted that, so all these people suddenly come out of the woodwork, was it for the social change? Or for the money and fame? Well you have to look at how our society works, which is pretty fucked up! 

So thats my conclusion, its pretty fucked up really! I love it – its bonkers! 

ABBA-Tastic Interlude!

I have reached a bit of an impasse in my creative life, I feel that I can’t move on until I post this “Top 10 ABBA songs” I have been struggling with this for a while now, ABBA really are amazing, as we all know I’m sure, but what is their best number one song? I’m going for:

Winner takes it all

I know its not quite the most choral one, because the blonde one sings this, its mostly a solo effort, but she sings it so well! Some of the lyrics are a bit cringe worthy, “Seeing me so tense – no self – confidence” heh,heh, not bad tho considering English wasn’t their first language! Don’t ask me to write anything in Swedish, cos anything could happen – except it won’t, because I wouldn’t – and couldn’t!

I’m going for Name of the Game as number 2, cos its classic ABBA, great singing, well constructed, I love the layering of vocals

Did you know Lemmy from Motorhead loved ABBA? Yeah, thats right, ABBA rock, its out there!

I’m gonna say “I do, I do, I do” for number 3, its like something the Bay City Rollers would do, it reeks of teenage 70s, I don’t know what I mean – its just insanity! 

So here’s my top 10:

Winner takes it all

Name of the game

I do I do I do

Summer night city

Fernando

Chiquitita

I have a dream

One of us

Eagle

Ring Ring

This concludes my effort, I think its fair – whats your fave ABBA songs? Or are you some heartless bastard that just thinks ABBA is so over now?? I mean really? What is that – even??? 😮

My Mate Dave!

Probably my best mate from the age of about 12 – 16 was Dave – he only lived around the corner, yet his culture and lifestyle was very different from mine. Up until that point, I had lead a pretty monastic life, probably destined to be a vicar, or maybe a bishop, I wasn’t really very religious, but I knew a lot about it from my upbringing – you can’t go straight to the Bishopry – you have to work your way up, but I figured it would be pretty easy, its a pretty cushy number, and I had a head start.

Well that was before I met Dave, he just went through life laughing and if he got angry he punched you in the face, it was his way of expressing anger, after that, he’d just go back to being a jolly good chap. I don’t think I ever made him angry, he seemed to find me fun to be with, and I certainly felt that way about him too. I was so impressed with his way of life, it wasn’t long before I decided to abandon all hope of salvation in exchange for a life of anarchic mayhem.

I remember when Dave met this new guy, “Dougal” Actually, his name was Warren, but Dave said “just wait till you see him – he looks just like Dougal” !! (From the Magic Roundabout) 

He was right, he Did look just like him! His fringe was always down over his eyes so that you never saw them, like us, he was always scruffy with his shirt hanging out – you could tell who was cool at school by their level of caveman-osity. When you called to Dougal, he’d buck his head upwards, so he could see you, just like the dog on telly!   No one knew what Warren was thinking about,  it was like he was in some permanent daydream, and you just woke him up, anyhow, whenever we went off on some dangerous or stupid adventure, he always tagged along

We were always bored by conventionalism, we looked for ways to turn everything upside down, teachers hated us, most adults thought we were feral ignoramuses, but as a gang, (by this time, there were more of us) – we were quite happy.  😀