Happy Halloween!

If you’re partying .. have a great time!!

No parties for me tonight, taking my daughters out for dinner as can’t be arsed with all the local kids including the ones you’ve never saw before coming round the door with their trick or treat begging bowls.

It defintely isn’t it like the good old days?

You did a song or told a joke and received an apple and a handful of monkey nuts in reward.

Yeah fantastic! πŸ™‚

But having kids, I entered into the sprit .. that was until a couple of years ago ..

I had about 100 goodie bags fully of crisps, sweets and a pound coin each .. I thought that was fairly generous.

The bags went down pretty well and shifted quickly.

But some little over piviledged, stuck up, fat red-haired bastard from along the street says .. “is that it?”

Ungrateful ugly little fuck .. never again I thought.

I was sorely tempted to run over the wheel of his bike the next time he left it in the middle of the street .. but that would be bad!!

A pic from last year, had a great night .. wish I was partying!

Have fun whatever you are doing!!

Walk On The Peaceful Side!

Sadly, Lou Reed died over the weekend, sadly, yes sadly because no matter what he did or didn’t do, he was a person, creative, outgoing, argumentative and vulnerable.

Lou’s musical career starting with The Velvet Underground and even his early solo career with Bowie was way before my time.

The earliest I can remember hearing him was when a still image version of Walk On The Wild Side was aired on Top Of The Pops around 1975.

Even in the short snippet that was shown, It was vastly different to anything else around in the charts back at the time. All that glam-rock poppy crap, the Osmonds, middle of the road, Leo Sayer, poppy shit.

It didn’t just sounded differently, basser and basic with his gravelly monotone, but the lyrical content with its overt sexuality of homo- and transexual natures was outrageous at the time.

Holly came from Miama FLA .. What does FLA mean?
Hitch-hiked her way across the USA .. Okay.
Plucked her eyebrows on the way .. Why?
Shaved her legs and then he was a she .. Eh????

Certainly had this boy paying attention and all of my mates in our formative years, intrigued but staid back in Glasgow circa 1975

I was barely a teenager at the time, but the question has to be asked. … If it was that dubious .. how come it was so popular that it made the charts?

Truth is, people like a bit of dirt, they like to play along with the dangerous side, not ever going there but they like to think they know.

Lou was often described as a musical geuius was undoubtedly a flawed character.

Oh do you think?

Well who made you God?

If you think that the man was flawed, then at least remember your own failings first before you start throwing stones.

As it happens, I do think the man was flawed, but I’m sure he had his plus points too.

Don’t we all?

But I’d never slag him off because of it and certainly not when the man isn’t even cold.

What a shocking epilogue the Daily Mail has given him today .. I’m loathe to provide a link and give them the hits, but read this, it comes across as sad, bitter and vitriolic as if there was a personal grudge involved.

Shame on them.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/tvshowbiz/article-2478118/Lou-Reed-enjoyed-VERY-debauched-walk-wild-excess-caught-him.html

Although I do like their line Walk On The Peaceful side, pretty incongruous with the rest of the article but I do agree with at sentiment.

As a balance, a more positive review from the Guardian

http://www.theguardian.com/music/2013/oct/27/lou-reed-velvet-underground-dies

I like his retort about how he stays creative, so do I!! πŸ™‚

Be peaceful Lou.

Changes – Is There Life In Glasgow?

Still don’t know what I was waiting for
And my time was running wild
A million dead-end streets
Every time I thought I’d got it made
It seemed the taste
was not so sweet
So I turned myself to face me
But I’ve never caught a glimpse
Of how the others must see the faker
I’m much too fast to take that test

Ch-ch-ch-ch-Changes
(Turn and face the stranger)
Ch-ch-Changes
Don’t want to be a richer man
Ch-ch-ch-ch-Changes
(Turn and face the stranger)
Ch-ch-Changes
Just gonna have to be a different man
Time may change me
But I can’t trace time

Tonight and Tomorrow night, the beautifl chamelon that is David Bowie is not playing Glasgow .. bummer!

But coincidentally, there are 2 separate Bowie tribute bands playing tonight and tomoorrow.

Tonight, my mate Stephen and I are at The Ferry to see Absolute Bowie .. Fab!

Tomorrow, my brother and I are at Oran Mor to see the Glasgow based Sensational David Bowie Tribute band.

Having seen both bands on a number of occasions, they are both excellent, but big John with the Glasgow band really plays the part and is living his dream.

That wins it for me.

http://www.davidbowietributeband.com/

Looking forward to a wonderful weekend of music and family and maybe a visit to Octoberfest if I’m lucky.

Sing …

It’s a god awful small affair to the girl with the mousy hair
But her mummy is yelling NO and her daddy has told her to go …

Don’t Be Too Harsh On Yourself!

Is it only men that suffer from a mid-life crisis?

Naaah .. not a chance!

A good friend contacted me today, she’s on holiday with her kids and some other family members.

Sitting there on a beach with lots of other families, kids running around playing and couples chatting and reading their books.

I could tell she was feeling down from the text, looking at the happily familes and their perceived perfection and then judging herself and her own situation harshly.

I told her that she was lucky to have her family all around her and to be staying in a 5-star resort, lying in the sunshine and being waited on hand and foot, that she should remember how lucky she is, but I was aware that she wasn’t telling me what the real problem was.

A few texts later it arrived.

She’s lying there in her bikini looking at her stretch marks and her drooping breasts and measuring herself against the young things adjacent to her with their pert bodies, handsome husbands and wondering where it all went wrong.

Life is cruel sometimes.

Sometimes through no fault of your own, you find yourself in a situation that you wouldn’t have wanted or planned for.

At this stage of her life, she doesn’t deserve to be on her own, she’s far too good for that.

So the conversation continued ..

She’s considering surgery, breast lift, botox, non-surgical face lifts .. anything to fight the years.

What she didn’t tell me is that she’s afraid, afraid of being alone and unwanted at this stage of her life and for the percievable future.

Truth is, she’s not young and she’s not perfect but she is still beautiful and her personality and warmth make her shine even with people who don’t really know her.

She should be with someone who see’s past the imperfections and loves her for who she is right now.

What she really wanted .. was reassurance.

She wanted to know that her life wans’t over and she still had the possibility of finding love ahead of her.

Of course there is.

She is a beautiful intelligent 40++ woman and too good to be on her own for long but still she judges herself harshly.

I dare say its because she is at that age, realising that her best is behind her.

Thats true, Probably for you and me too.

I know that I’m my own worst critic, but I’ve learned to stop comparing myself with other people, especially those much younger than I or that the media puts forward as conventionally beautiful.

My advice, value yourself for who you are and all that you have achieved, try and make the best of yourself., but don’t be too harsh on yourself either. You cannot compete with magazines or conventional beauty so why waste all your energy trying?

Life is too short to waste being hard on yourself and not holding back from being all that you can be. So get out there and live it, if someone doesn’t like you for who you are then forget them, they don’t deserve you.

A few words from one my favourite poems seem apt … I was reminded of this recently.

No man can tether time or tide .. and no woman too.

There is absolutely nothing wrong in making the best of yourself, making yourself feel good.

We all do it .. in one way or another, small stuff like haircuts or keeping fit. Anyone with any self awareness.

But surgery defintely isn’t required to stay beautiful. Personally I think thats the road to ruin.

Like the poem below, external beauty is very much in the eye of the beholder.

And it doesn’t last forever .. so you better make the inside count too.

Extract from Tam O’Shanter by Robert Burns

But pleasures are like poppies spread:
You seize the flower, its bloom is shed;
Or like the snow fall on the river,
A moment white – then melts forever,
Or like the Aurora Borealis rays,
That move before you can point to their place;
Or like the rainbow’s lovely form,
Vanishing amid the storm.
No man can tether time or tide

Love the Christina song below .. not played it for ages ..

http://www.robertburns.org.uk/Assets/Poems_Songs/tamoshanter.htm

Celtic Ajax Amsterdam 2001!

What were you doing back in August 2001?

This was just before the world changed with the tragedy and carnage of 9/11

I was newly separated in May that year, moved out of the family home and living in a shitty rented flat for 6 months while I found my feet.

The place was awful, Β£400pm rental didn’t buy you much back then when prices were high. The place didn’t have heating except for the gas fire in the lounge and I used to sleep there with the tv for company and almost died from Carbon Monoxide poisoning because the fire was so old and ill-maintained.

Life has moved on a lot since then, I was in a long term relationship, bought a lovely home and my daughter Claire who lives with me has went from a 4 year old baby to a fine young woman of 16. My elder 2 are now 24 and 23 and flourishing in their own lifes.

One thing that has not changed and never will is my football team.

Partners have came and gone, friends too, but somethings never change.

Tonight, the third game of this years Champions League rolls round to Glasgow.

My son, my friend Sara and I will be sitting together as usual in The Jock Stien Stand at Celtic Park for the visit of the Dutch Champions Ajax of Amsterdam.

Having already narrowly lost to Barcelona and Milan this really is a must win for Celtic or we can forget our chances of qualifying for either the Champions League play-off stages like we did last year or falling back to the Europa Cup if we finish third.

Either way means European football after Christmas and the resulting increased revenues for the club.

So its a must win!

Last time we played Ajax back in 2001, a group of us went along, Joe, Tam, Paul and a few others.

Meeting up at Glasgow Airport at 5am, the drinking started on arrival and the party was already in full swing as the airport was full of Celtic supporters on the way to Amsterdam for the day.

The singing and the drinking didn’t stop all the way to Amsterdam, where Dam Square was full of Celtic supporters drinking beer and singing their heads off.

Me and the bhoys dd what most of the bhoys did, had a look round the red-light windows and then found a cafe to partake of what Amsterdam is famous for .. apart from the canals, tulips, diamonds and hookers.

A few hours later it was time to head for the game, it turns out the stadium is on the outside of town and we didn’t know where we were going, so we just followed the crowd.

Fantastic game, one of the best that I can remember, our first European game with Martin O’Neil as manager and we looked like a team reborn, Chris Sutton was amazing up front, terrorising and bullying the Ajax defence, the pace of Agathe and the trickery of Petta tore them to shreds, never mind the mastery of Henrik Larrson who unususually didn’t score on this occasion.

One of my favourite moments as a supporter was the build up to the third goal were Celtic had a long stream of passes then Sutton bulleted the header into the top of the net.

The journey home was a sea of Celtic supporters transferred to the first buses available and singing all the way home.

At the airport, no check-in and herded on to planes as we arrived.

Post-911, I doubt that would happen today as airports are so much more OTT on their security procedures.

Fine memories .. even although some of it is a litle bit hazy!!

Tonight can go either way, but we are up for this and relish the challenge.

Glasgow is Green And White!

C’mon The Hoops!!

Free!!!

Whispering in her ear
my magic potion for love
telling her that I’m sincere
and that there’s
nothing too good for us
and I just got to be free …..

Teasing hands on her mind
gives life such mystery
happiness all the time
oh and how that just pleases me
but I want to be free
free free
and I just got to be me
me …..

Feeling you close to me
makes all my senses smile
lets not waste esctasy
because I only be here for a while
I got to be free
free free

and I just got to be me
me me
Free Free
and I just wannna
I just wanna be me

FREE!!

I love that song, such a sexy chilled out groove.

I love the sentiment of freedom, but not comfortable about lying your ass off just to get in someone’s pants because you’re only here a while.

Lapsed Catholic guilt?

Love the song, but as per my post the other day, I actually don’t want to be free?

Which version .. Billy Mackenzie or Deniece Williams?

Billy Mackenzie anytime!!

In Love, In Fear, In Hate, In Tears!

Friday … again …

It’s been a funny few weeks, but I’ve said that already!! πŸ™‚

You know its great to have friends ..

Real long term friends who let you down when you need them or can be a real pain in the ass, but we have history and they will still be friends this time next year.

Medium term friends and new friends who barely know me but I like them and they enjoy my gibbering.

And some friends that I’ve only ever met online. Some of whom have got to know me better through this blog and letting my thoughts run free.

I’ve had some of my deepest most personal conversations with people that I haven’t actually met, why is that?

Is it the anonymity?

The willingness to open you heart and doing so allows them to open theirs too?

I dare say its a combination of both of the above.

I also think it’s that I don’t want anything from anyone apart from honest conversation and the possibility of getting to know them better.

Thats the thing about being online, you meet all sorts of people, some are interested in you, some are not, some people are interesting to you and some are not .. sometimes you think they are but they drift off or somehow the connection gets lost along the way.

Thems the breaks in the big bad online arena.

But would I change it, hell no!

To those friends that I’ve spoke to over the past few weeks, those that I’ve shared my wee traumas with, that have listened to my woes … and vice versa … or I’ve shown off my new house and made them tea or dinner, I thank you.

No seriously, I do thank you.

I’ve listened to your woes and gave you my honest advice, nothing expected in return.

But you’ve listened to mine too and its appreciated.

I definitely feel back n the way to my old self, but thats not without some sort of humility and gratitude.

Tonight .. meeting my mate Stephen, you know the one, you’ve heard me moan about him .. a curry and a beer at 9:30 in Shawlands .. ironically my so-called best mate has been in the least contact with me over the past few weeks and been a total let-down.

You know he plays the “I’ve got twins card” far too often .. even although the twins were 2 last week.

He is a total drama queen, you’d think he and his missus were the only two people to ever have kids .. I knew he had no balls when he went along with singing lessons for babies when the girls were only 6 months at the time .. woose!!

Singing lessons for babies .. are you having a laugh?

Can you imagine the scene, all these gullible earth-mothers thinking that they are helping their kids develpment and creativity while some hippy-chick tells them how wonderful their kids are and pockets their dosh … suckers!!

When he contacted me about going out tonight I was tempted to tell him to fuck off and who needs friends like you that are not there when you actually do need friends around .. but that wouldn’t be good.

So I’ll wait until I see him face to face and try to be as constructive as possible. But somethings need to be said.

Do I want to fall out with him, not really, But I am going to tell him how I’ve felt let down at what was a pretty troubled time.

Yeah yeah .. its a bromance I hear you say .. you know it!! πŸ™‚

Get the beers in and shut up!! πŸ™‚

A wee song for today .. Sit Down by James .. I was right there at the front when he sang this standing up in front of the audience earlier this year .. but thats not my singing!!

Those who fear the breathe of sadness ..
Those who find their touched by madness ..
Those who find themselves ridiculous ..

In love, in fear, in hate, in tears ….. sit down next to me!

Being A Couple?

Hello to you,

been a strange week .. there’s been a few of them recently.

My daughter Claire is on holiday from school so has disappeared over to her mums for the week.

I should be making the most of that, having fun, doing what I want with the house to myself.

In truth tho, I miss having her around, but if I’m completely honest, its not just Claire I miss, I miss having company of any kind.

You know how it is, you go to work, try to keep yourself busy, go and see friends or the movies.

But at the end of the day,, when everyone ihas said goodnight, you are on your own.

I fell asleep at 9pm last night, right out of it, woke up at 3, did a little browsing, watched tv, then felt tired again and fell asleep til 7am.

Woke up, made tea, played piano and was late for work .. how did that happen? πŸ™‚

I’ve been on my own for a while now, I should be used to this and I thought I was, but maybe thats not quite honest.

Sometimes having Claire living with me means its not really practical or feasible to be with anyone else.

But and this is a bit difficult for me to say, the more I live alone, the more I realise that I miss being part of a couple.

Theres a shocker .. that wasn’t easy to admit it, but I do.

What makes you a couple? Is it lvinig together? A shared home? kids? A mortgage?

All that would be ideal, the fairytale of youth, but I don’t think you need any of that to know that you are in a secure loving relationship.

For a while, I thought that what made you a couple was having common interests and doing exciting things together, concerts, theatre, holidays, hill-walking.

But thats all pish really.

Doing fun things is great, but it just hides the reality of day-to-day living separately.

Now I realise is that what really makes you a couple is when you are happy to do the ordinary everyday banal stuff as long as you are doing it together or as part of a team.

You know the daft things, food shopping together, or separately and buying things because you know that your partner likes them.

Knowing that its your job to takes the bin out and that she will put the washing on .. or vice versa.

I’m quite a domesticated kind of guy, I like to enjoy life and have lots of fun, but I’m also very capable and I do everything that needs done around the house, I don’t “need” anyone else to do it for me.

I’m not looking for a little woman or a mother replacement to come along and do all that crap that most men can’t do on their own.

I like having a nice comfortable home, I do everything that needs done .. okay that includes having a cleaner in one day per week.

But when it comes right down to it, there is no point having a large family home on my own.

What has taken me a while to realise is that I want to be part of a couple rather than a single man.

But it is going to take one very special lady to change that!! πŸ™‚

Right, enough of the self analysis ..

Actually it wasn’t analysis at all, I just wrote that off the top of my head, hope it makes sense, kind of tells you were I am.

Love this song from Texas … But still prefer the Al Green original .. no competition really.

Sunshine On Leith – No More

Bloody hell ….

You know that song by the The Proclaimers – Sunshine On Leith?

Well if you read back here on here, you know that I love it.

It’s such an open-hearted love song, that cuts to the chase, the guy puts his feelings right out there and tells the girl how grateful he is to have her in his life and to help him live again.

Idealistic?

Maybe, but we’ve all been there.

I was at The Proclaimers on Saturday night at The Hydro.

Lets say they were average, the anthems Letter From America, 500 Miles, Lets Get Married etc, were superb.

But the rest, or most of the rest was filler, mundane at best and dirge at worst.

Okay, they finished on a few biggies which had the crowd going, including me and there were smiles all around when leaving the stadium.

Harsh but fair? I hope so.

As for The Hydro itself, I’ve been a couple of times now and its undoutedly a great venue, stunning looking form the outside with its bright lights and easy access to the important tjhings like bars and toilets.

But this was the first time I’ve been in the seated area .. hopefully the last.

The arena itself is too big and you are too far away from the performers to feel any connection with them. You can only really watch it on the big screens at the side, so you’d be as well just watching it on DVD in the house.

Very Disappointing.

Anyhoo, thats all preamble.

Having left the gig with the feel-good factor, I went to see movie Sunshine On Leith, a tale of love and loss set in Edinburgh and based around The Proclaimers greatest hits and feeding on their popularity with the Scottish audience.

I should have bloody known .. seriously .. slaps himself in face and asks will you ever learn?

What was I expecting?

A Scottish version of Mama-Mia?

Well thats exactly what I got only on a miniscule scale, lesser stars and a much smaller budget.

Jeez .. it was terrible from start to finish.

The funny parts weren’t funny, the sad parts were so obviously trying to manipulate your emotions that it was cringeable.

One of the main stars, Peter Mullan has always been a hero of mine, the man has a great social conscious, I’ve been a fan since his early days in the 9:84 company at The Citizens Theatre and his first drama I was aware of The Steamie has a personal significance as I remember helping my mum along to our local baths with the bags of laundry.

But this was awful, terrible screen-writing, predictable dialogue and the singing was woeful.

The big love scene at the end and the dance routine at Edinburghs Mound was particularly cringe inducing.

I hate to say it but I laughed out loud with nervous embarrassment. I wasn’t the only one.

But don’t take my word for it, go and see it, you won’t believe how bad it is.

A fantastic advert for Edinburgh tho, it is indeed a beautiful city.

I have a great affection for The Proclaimers, they were fantastic on their short set when they opened this years T In The Park.

But no more please!!

How Soon Is Now?

Love this song, love the video from Johnny Marr covering The Smiths song playing the guitar riffs he made so famous.

Particularly love the following lines ..

I am human and I need to be loved
just like everybody else does

The full crowd singing that at T In The Park earlier this year was pretty special.

Love those lyrics of angst and desperation.

But just how soon is now?

How Soon is Now?

I am the son
and the heir
of a shyness that is criminally vulgar
I am the son and heir
of nothing in particular

You shut your mouth
how can you say
I go about things the wrong way
I am human and I need to be loved
just like everybody else does

I am the son
and the heir
of a shyness that is criminally vulgar
I am the son and the heir
of nothing in particular

You shut your mouth
how can you say
I go about things the wrong way
I am human and I need to be loved
just like everybody else does

There’s a club if you’d like to go
you could meet somebody who really loves you
so you go, and you stand on your own
and you leave on your own
and you go home, and you cry
and you want to die

When you say it’s gonna happen “now”
well, when exactly do you mean?
see I’ve already waited too long
and all my hope is gone

You shut your mouth
how can you say
I go about things the wrong way
I am human and I need to be loved
just like everybody else does

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=_-wrbe77xkA