Friday, February 13, 2009

The final stretch!

I'm off work now, taking annual leave to finish off this thing (aka My Thesis). Ooooh, it's quite exciting to have an end in sight. I keep thinking of normal things I can do when I've submitted, like going clothes shopping and to see some exhibitions. Even a bit of DIY seems enticing, believe it or not. Today I have to make a timetable of what's still got to be done and stick to it, or I'll dream about missed deadlines and get in a state and I definitely don't want that.

Hope to be back soon with something more interesting to write about!

heheh.... ooooh, I'm nearly there!!!!!!!

Sunday, February 08, 2009

The Cramps' Lux Interior dead...

I'm a bit shocked. I've just read that Lux Interior of The Cramps died this week. The NME says he died on Feb 4th of a pre-existing heart condition, aged 62. He was the lead singer of a band that fused punk with rockabilly in the mid 1970s, creating the prototype 'psychobilly' sound and you can see their influence in numerous bands since then, but they were the first. A real one-off.

I've seen them several times over the years, most recently at The Astoria (RIP Astoria too, while I'm at it). I really liked their swampy rockabilly sound and the mixture of trashy 1950s/60s garage and surf music and B movies influences they wove into their own music. It led me onto original rockabilly and strange old films I might not have come across otherwise. He's finally keeping that date with Elvis....

(pic: Redferns, in the NME.)

These are good personal accounts and comments.

Here's The Cramps doing 'The Way I Walk' live at Napa State Mental Hospital in 1978....

Saturday, February 07, 2009

25 things

Sanddancer and Roses have both done 25 random things about themselves over on their blogs, and as I'm similarly lacking in inspiration at the moment I'll do it too (let's hope my inspiration's all going into the thesis instead, eh). 25 seems a lot though, so I'll do it quickly as a blog stop gap for my possible missing without a trace status over the next few weeks.

1. I wish I could think of a theme for my blog like other people do, but I can't. Maybe one day...

2. I'm getting concerned about the changing ratio of available floor space to books and papers at home.

3. I got a ride in a classic hearse in a open day cemetery cortege with an undertaker once, and I thought 'eat your hearts out, picnicking goths' as we drove past them.

4. I like listening to other people's conversations on buses. Even boring ones.

5. I'm wondering if that makes me nosey, or if loud conversations in public places makes it ok to listen?

6. Washing the dirty dishes from the night before is now considered a 'break' from PhD work. Whooppeee, it's fun and games all the way with me.

7. I could sing the jingle from the 1960s Zambian TV advert for Vaseline Blue Seal White Petroleum Jelly, but I have a horrible singing voice so I won't. I wish I could forget it actually!

8. I love The Bill. It is my favourite TV soap-drama.

9. Seeing 1950s classic cars out on the roads makes me happy.

10. I don't like numbers, but I was a computer programmer for a while. Weird, eh.

11. I'm now flagging with this '25 things' thing and wondering whether to knock off early....

12. Oh yes, I'm going to ask people I know to send me things in the post addressed to Dr so and so when I've finished this damned PhD, just for the novelty value of using a different title!!!!! Heheheh, it may sound a little nerdy but oooooh I can't wait!!!!!!!!!!!!

13. I am eating a piece of toast with almond butter on and drinking a cup of tea at the moment. Very nice too.

14. I was meant to take some photos of bottles last week for my thesis, but I forgot.

15. I am frequently surprised by how upset people are at the 'wrong' results they get from googling their own names.

16. I love reading the blog stats to see the strange search terms people use to end up at my blog.

17. Following on from that, I am glad to provide photos of the Kiss Kasket for all and sundry....

18..... and to clear up for once and for all that Sherlock Holmes was not a real person.

19. I want to pay off my mortgage and buy another flat by the sea before the 2012 Olympics fiasco hits London so I can escape. I was planning to do it anyway, but that seems a good target date.

20. I absolutely abhor strong aftershave or perfume on other people, particularly in confined spaces like my office or on a bus. It gives me a headache after a while.

21. I am a big fan of Douglas Sirk's films. Would Pandora and the Flying Dutchman (one of my favourite films) have been even better if he'd directed it???

22. I'm starting to feel guilty about doing this blog post now... all that time that's not going on the PhD... tut tut...

23. Perversely, I don't feel guilty about spending ages on the postgrad forum, which I am very fond of.

24. I think art colleges are rather wonderful places to work in.

25. Having said that, I'd better get on with this weekend's chapters or I won't be doing my own work prospects much good. See you soon, in a virtual sense!