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Butter, milk and cheese and an equilateral chainsaw

2013-06-08 ~ 7:19 p.m.

I seem to have kind of given up on my dissertation chapter 2. I guess there's no more practical research I can do before 12 noon Monday.

Friday night I was through in Glasgow for Half Man Half Biscuit at the ABC. First gig I'd been to for a few months. But they're always entertaining, that dependable pleasure of standing in a room, occasionally jumping up and down, while listening to carefully selected shared cultural references, odd jokes, and non sequiturs. (I did basically tweet the whole thing before and after, though not during, but did make some notes on my hand, so I will be using that for memories.*)

The support act was Roja, who I can't seem to find online (and indeed somebody had to shout out for them to spell their name). They are a five-piece Americana/Tex-Mex/country-rock band from the north of England (the trumpeter was from Merseyside I think). I was initially worried because the singer looked like he was from Mumford and Sons, with red jeans, waistcoat and cloth cap. But the other hat and fashion action was better: two members in rather nice brimmed hats, and the girl violinist had an awesome spanish-style dress with lots of frills. They didn't have a lot of variety (maybe I just don't appreciate the subtleties) and I did occasionally worry they might launch into Hotel California, but quite entertaining.

HMHB had an impressive merchandise stall with a wide range of t-shirts, 50p vinyl of Dickie Davies's Eyes, genuine music cassettes in a cardboard box, lots of other 12" and probably CDs too.

One of my great obsessions is deciding which Half Man Half Biscuit song I want played at my funeral, or possibly my wedding, though right now, the former seems more likely (besides my dream wedding will be in Vegas and purely Elvis themed). I had been leaning towards awesome Thomas Tallis/Brad Friedel referencing track I Went To A Wedding. Then I briefly considered San Antonio Foam Party, with its somewhat poignant opening "If I had agoraphobia / And if I had claustrophobia / Trapped inside my porch / Things would be bleak / Especially midweek" but the lyrics speculating over whether Tim Henman is an android might be a bit dated. 99% Of Gargoyles Look Like Bob Todd is also dated (even I need to look up who Bob Todd is; he was a straight man for Benny Hill) but fantastic. But realistically for a funeral it has to be National Shite Day, with its poignant lyrics about Primark FM and dead sanderlings. It would also work for a wedding dance, because frankly anything would, even Autobahn by Kraftwerk.

They did a lot of classics, mainly early tracks, perhaps because they don't have a new album to promote. As well as Foam Party, Gargoyles and Shite Day, there was Trumpton Riots, Vatican Broadside ("Who the fucking hell are Slipknot?"), Look Dad No Tunes, The Light At The End Of The Tunnel (Is The Light of an Oncoming Train), For What Is Chatteris, Shit Arm Bad Tattoo (the second best song being rude about Pete Doherty after the Indelicates' Waiting For Pete Doherty To Die), Joy Division Oven Gloves, Bob Wilson Anchorman, Korfball's Coming Home, All I Want For Christmas is a Dukla Prague Away Kit, Running Order Squabble Fest, and lots of other songs with titles that bear little relation to the lyrics. And there was a classic cover of Tragedy. I was almost tempted to do the Steps dance, but I didn't see anyone else doing it and to be honest I can't remember the subtler details of it like exactly when you're supposed to do the thing with your hands.

Today, I went to the beach, in East Lothian. I wore shorts and briefly attempted to swim! It was fucking cold on the bits that go in the shorts. But I felt it was my duty to the sungod to do a bit of not-getting-hair-wet breast stroke. The beach was in the middle of a nature reserve, so there were also strange insects and a very small number of sea-birds. There weren't many people in the water, though a few kids ran in and out and there was a woman doing some serious swimming, as well as another woman just sitting in the water next to the shore, possibly enjoying the feeling of the waves coming in. It's a bit sad seeing people at the beach in boots, leggings, opaque tights etc, I'm not sure if they were imagining the weather would be a bit more Scottish, or they didn't want to enjoy the sun. But if there's one place you can show your fleshy bits, it's the beach.

Aside from that, I've got to submit chapter 2 of my dissertation on Monday and it's a bit lacklustre. But this was going to be the hard chapter because I realised that writing on the depiction of women in Dada art would be problematic if almost none of them ever depicted women. So I tried to make it about gender relations, and the absence of women, but even so, it's not great and I've been very lethargic about research the past few weeks. So although there are definitely ideas they're not fully developed.

*Also doing some fond reminiscing on Twitter about the busier days of Diaryland when the internet was a cool place to be. About a quarter of the people I follow on Twitter are still people I know through DL, and if you exclude joke accounts and celebrities I want to have sex with {well, ok, Molly Ringwald} or include people I know through DL people, it's higher. Actually the figure on Facebook isn't so different, though more of that is people who I haven't spoken to for years and in the interim have e.g. joined the army or become hipsters, but who I accepted requests from anyway.

1 comments so far


Finally found someone I love more than the rain - 2013-09-17
Taxi driver, be my shrink for the hour, leave the meter running - 2013-08-29
Dear friend, I cannot tell the reason why we started well - 2013-08-06
I saw this movie one time called Imitation of Life. The movie was really kind of shitty but I loved the title. - 2013-07-12
Catch the bus by half past three otherwise you'll find you're walking home - 2013-07-10

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