The first sounds I heard stirring from a restless sleep this New Year’s morn were that of an 8 year old multiracial boy outfoxing imminent defeat playing Microsoft chess. No sooner had I heard those familiar digitalised trumpet motifs than I realised this was a challenge from Ye Gods of the oldest game in the civilised world to achieve more than I had the previous year against & in spite of everyone’s expectations…especially Microsoft. Or maybe just to win once on amateur setting against that almost inhumane (if I didn’t know better) supremely computerised robo-chess bastard. Either way, by waking up in my own kecks & establishing my surroundings the year was off to a promising start…
One New Year a mate informed me that his evening had resembled an existential seminar whereby his French Architect Brother-in-law casually commented drearily on the stroke of midnight that ‘time is merely a man-made concept and should therefore be treated as entirely redundant’. Sartre would be proud.
Looking back over the year of 2000 plus 10 in my ‘Peak District Appointments Calender’ for £3.49 (working out at less than a penny per day) the only appointments I remember having to keep were for that lump on my lovesack that turned out to be an old minstrel trapped amidst sofa cushions and then betwixt my own skin-molded saddle cushion and inner thigh.
Last year’s main highlights included:
- Watching Cannibal Corpse perform their ode to romantic longing amidst the throes of lust with ‘I Cum Blood’ in the Sunday afternoon sun whilst a human pyramid toppled before me
- Helping to construct and lime render a strawbale tandoor building at the AMC Gardens which in turn led to meeting Prince Charlie & his ears (they waited outside like big flappy bodyguards)
- Grappling with macabre method acting whilst working the Lace Market Theatre audience of the Samuel Smith bar for Sweeney Todd
- Biting into a succulent Egremont Russett apple fresh from the trees of Ecoworks orchard in St Ann’s Allotments casting a gaze overlooking the city
There must be more than just these four but the rest are taking longer to form in the recesses of my annual memorium shifting in-between the holy temple of devotion to my longest suffering hobby: doing sweet diddly squat a.k.a naff ‘awl mate. Its not that i’m unaware of time’s passing (you can’t view a human construct like time as wasted) merely that more of it should be put to more productive use but relaxin all cool is good for so long until you realise that someone else saw you acting the reflective fool for an extended period & has now mistaken you for a stonerthink monghead.
My Best Gigs of the Year
- Twisted Sister @ Bloodstock – Deedee calling mother nature the ‘C’ word from rural Derbyshire)
- Melt Banana @ Mock (my) Pity – Yasuko daring us to follow their band to somewhere called ‘Colchester’
- Armando Ianucci & Peter Capaldi @ Broadway – I’ve got my big plate!
- Quantic & His Combo Barbaro @ Rescue Rooms – 100% Columbian.
- Cosmic Funky Nuts – Where did these guys come from???
My Worst Gigs of the Year
- Boney M @ Nottingham Square – with one original brummie backing dancer!
- Cosmic Funky Nuts (Put ‘em back in, they ain’t done yet)
- Grace Jones, Cheap Trick, Stewart Lee, The Pogues & Bad Manners (although just sober enough to have seen them before), Dr Feelgood, Soweto Kinch, 65 Days of Static, ATP & erm The Ladyboys of Bangkok (In the words of Alan Partridge “I don’t find them attractive it’s just confusing”) & all the others I missed through monetary skinflintery or chronic traveller’s juju
My Top 5 Cinematic Filems of the Year
- Lost Boys – Lorino’s 23rd B-day Scream Room Stake Out (Paul’s leather pipe cleaners won best supporting role)
- Street Trash – It’s Saturday Night on Halloween, what else ya gonna watch?
- Metropolis – Fully restored & still the great mediator rules supreme
- Toy Story 3 – Spanish Buzz is like Antonio Banderas on crack flamenco
- Human Centipede – The lovebird directors surnames are even Six: just perfect. The disturbed & sick puppies