Saturday, June 30, 2007

bound by wild desire

Ukulele Flash!*

I spent some considerable time last night playing with this. For those of you not ukulele obsessed enough to click (what's wrong with you?!) It's an offset of the Dulwich Ukulele Club, and includes play-alongable tracks. With a pdf of the chords, and everything. Which is very exciting when you've only been playing along with yourself in your sitting room, honest.

It confirms for me two things which really I knew already. Firstly, I need to find some people to play with asap, because I suspect it will be double the fun and I would learns lots; and secondly my strumming is a bit rubbish and I need to practice. This is probably bad news for my right wrist, but maybe it'll take the pressure off my left thumb which currently aches like buggery.

In other news: I now possess a nail punch set (a set, fer chrissakes!), and spent a considerable amount of time yesterday with my nose pressed against my bedroom floorboards. This close examination led me to visit the carpet shop this morning. Who knows what will happen next? It's anybody's guess, frankly.

*This post contains mass potential innuendo. I tried to avoid it but gave up. Life's too short and I have strumming practice to consider.

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Friday, June 29, 2007

'long as I can be with you, it's a lovely day

st anne's soho
Originally uploaded by etcher67
I'll admit that I'm a little tired of the constant downpours. I even succumbed and bought an umbrella today, which for an ex art school Totnesian hippy is wrong; very, very wrong. Perhaps it's final confirmation that I'm no longer a country girl. (I think I'll always be a country girl.)

Between the rain however, I have been enjoying the sky. Have you looked up at it lately? Recently the clouds have been amazing. I am particularly fond of the fair weather cumulus clouds which queue across the sky like lorries waiting for the Woolwich ferry. Apparently they often develop into storm clouds. Not a great surprise to anyone right now, I imagine. I like the mackerel skies, too. Mackerel sky: never long wet, never long dry. Sounds about right, doesn't it?

I might buy some wellies.



Thursday, June 28, 2007

this is an old song

My goodness, it's amazing how much better music sounds when you aren't having to kick the speakers or fiddle with the jack every five minutes. The addition of an extra bass speaker has added a whole new dimension as well. Funny, that. The speakers were absurdly cheap too. I expect speaker purists would turn pale green if they knew what I'd bought. Purists of all natures make me nervous, so I shan't be entering into discussion about them. I am happy with my new speakers, They work, and everything.

Following the previous post I think I've slowly come to the conclusion that a couple of weekends are to be spent on my hands and knees banging in nails and filling gaps with sawdust/glue mixtures. Notice that I gloss over the sanding issue: I'm still putting off the actual hiring of machines, as I can't quite face a weekend of hell right now.

In other news: I have just found an active ukulele blog. What's more, it's an active ukulele blog with Joanna Newsom chords. This is probably more exciting than it really ought to be.

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Tuesday, June 26, 2007

ask the audience

Originally uploaded by etcher67
Since the last post has been so useful in galvanising my opinion I offer you, dear reader, another conundrum. I am currently on the horns of an indecision: should I sand my bedroom floor, or should I carpet?

In favour of sanding: It will look nice, artistic, trendy and stuff. It will be cheaper. It is (probably) more environmentally friendly.
Against sanding: The floorboards are a bit uneven, one or two are cracked, and some twat has attacked them in a couple of places with a disc saw (see pic). The gaps are a bit big in places so it might be drafty in the winter. I have to sand it myself and I recently read something describing this job as 'a weekend of hell'. I am not really in favour of weekends of hell, as my weeks are hellish enough to be going on with at the moment.

In favour of carpet: Someone else will get bruised knees fitting it. Softy lovely for my toesies.
Against carpet: Expensive. Not remotely bohemian. Irritating when I (inevitably) drop something on it which stains. Carpeting means making a decision about which particular beige carpet to have.

I have spent the last fortnight vacillating and really thought I had finally decided on carpet, until today some bad fairy left a copy of 'Real Homes' in the staffroom, which featured lots of pictures of bedrooms with nice sanded and sometimes painted floor. They looked good, undeniably good. The violent shock of interesting reading matter in the staffroom aside, this publication has thrown me back into indecision.

So. What do you think?

PS Yep, that's 'nearly blue' on the walls. Looks nice, dunnit?
PPS Don't even think about suggesting laminate. I'm not always cheerful, you know.

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Monday, June 25, 2007

technical procrastination

raindrops on the red one
Originally uploaded by etcher67
My external hard drive is full, and I'm not sure what to do next. I suppose I have to buy a new one, but when I do I'm not sure how one goes about filling it only with stuff that is not already on the full one. I expect that's possible. I expect it has something to do with only updating with files created beyond a certain date. A date I'd have to work out, somehow. Or make up.

I probably ought to burn some of the photographs to CDs, or DVDs, or something, though I suspect that it's the music which is taking up the bulk of the disc space. Unfortunately this would involve addressing the issue of my broken CD drive, a problem I have been happily ignoring for oh; about eight months. Apparently I do not have a great need for burning CDs. Not since I took the back off the PC and discovered that the CD drive was mysteriously connected to the DVD drive and therefore not quite as slot-in-and-out-able as I had anticipated.

In the meantime I have finally grown tired of fiddling with the jack on my speakers every time the loose connection causes them to cut out, and have ordered some new ones.



do anything twice

Ukulele flash!

Side-effect of no TV? More Ukulele. Side effect of more ukulele? Blisters on fingers. Achy thumb.

I have found online a series of chord progression exercises, which has made me happy (and sore). This surprises me given the many years I spent avoiding doing piano scales. Ain't life strange.

Also - another visit to the Duke of Uke confirms it as London's most unwelcoming shop (perhaps it's my face). I am tempted to set up a rival, friendly shop where people greet customers and engage in conversation about stuff of an ukulele nature rather than refusing to make eye contact and playing ear-splitting Lou Reed tunes. Maybe she had a hangover..

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Wednesday, June 20, 2007

the vandals took the handles

Originally uploaded by etcher67
I am still not watching TV!

Well, OK, I cheated a little. Last night I watched 19 minutes of 'How to Look Good Naked', a programme which I initially found very watchable, because it's quite jolly, it's quite a body-friendly concept (and because there's bugger-all else on a Tuesday night). Slowly, slowly however I found my conscience pricking me. Does one really have to have a manicure and a pedicure to look OK in the naked? Is it honestly not OK to go out of the house immaculately made up and accessorised? Do I have to wear high heels in order to feel good about myself? Don't misunderstand me, I enjoy doing all of the above when I am in the mood for them, but somewhere in the back of my head is a nagging voice whispering accusingly 'This programme is little better than those 1950's edicts on how you should greet your husband at the door with a happy smile, which we supposedly enlightened women like to laugh at. It's a jumped-up Before and After feature in a cheap magazine, and you my girl are falling for it'.

I'd like to say that 19 minutes into the undeniably charming presenter Gok telling the latest woman that without her terrible grey underwear she really could be attractive, my inner feminist rose up and turned off the TV because she could Take It No Longer. I'd be lying, I'm afraid. What actually happened was I decided that sitting in the garden watching the distant fork lightening and waiting for the thunderstorm and its accompanying rain to hit my house would be far more interesting, as the unbending formula of the programme has begun to bore me. I expect he fed her knickers to some garden equipment after I'd gone.

The rain denied all expectations and didn't hit until 10pm, at which point I sat up in bed naked (sans pedicure and 'natural' make-up, I'm afraid) and hung my head out of the window to listen to it pounding down into the garden. It was well worth the wait.

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Monday, June 18, 2007

this title is not interesting, or experimental

I am having an experiment: I am not watching TV*. The main purpose of this experiment is to see whether I do more interesting things instead of slumping in a semi-comatose state in front of stuff that I really am not that interested in anyway. Last night as a consequence of not watching TV (apart from Dr Who, which is exempt from the experiment) I went to bed early. I'm not sure that this actually counts as more interesting; especially as I couldn't get to sleep.

Tonight I appear to be updating my blog. This may or may not count as more interesting, depending upon your point of view (dear Reader).

I did think that I might do a bit of gardening, as it's light; the jasmine needs encouraging to grow in a different direction from the one it's going in at the moment. On the other hand I wonder whether I might try the difficult art (for me at least) of doing nothing. Perhaps I need to work down to that slowly.

It's all very experimental.

*I fully expect this experiment to have a limited life, possibly of only two nights.



Sunday, June 17, 2007

summer, buddy holly

Originally uploaded by etcher67
1) a picnic (with pork pies and strawberries)
2) a deckchair (with stripes)
3) a red drink in a red glass (on a deckchair, with stripes)
4) belgian beer (with a glass like a bowl)
5) 5 songs ukulele and voice (with sam brown)
6) chicken and roasted cherry tomatoes (with a glass of wine and Dr Who)



Thursday, June 07, 2007

with shoes like that

Originally uploaded by etcher67
I am dithering endlessly about the colour of the walls in the front bedroom. This is the second lot of testers I've done: the other lot were all creams and a quite hideous bright yellow. I was insistent that I was going to paint the room yellow, which is why when that proved to be a horrible idea I lurched over to the other side of the colour wheel (tho' technically that'd be purple, but the room was purple when this whole saga started, so I'm not going there.)

I'm now vasscilating between nearly-turquoise and nearly-blue. I'd all but decided on the nearly-blue (it's called jade white but it sure as eggs ain't jade) when I sat this afternoon moaning gently in Erialc's room and noticed that her wall..the bit of her wall which I have never much nearly-blue. Also the nearly-turquoise is being used on the walls of the garden in Big Brother. Not that I've watched it. Obviously.

Monday, June 04, 2007


Originally uploaded by etcher67
Did you have cake? They asked. Of course I had cake!

Saturday, June 02, 2007

happy cakeday to me

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