Personal and undiluted views
The Ramones

381 days ago

Abi the teenage curtain twitcher with a new snitch on those folks at the Welsh Hovel

I was only joking when I suggested that someone here in the last village in Wales, snitch-on-Dee would report me for having a bonfire. But hey Abi Lancelotte, the teenage curtain twitcher.


976 days ago

RIP Ric Ocasek of the Cars, a man who was part of my youth in Warwick and New York heads to a better place

Boy, I did not realise that Ric was just six years younger than my Dad. How on earth can he have been so cool when I was 18?  Anyhow, aged 75 he heads to a better place. The front man of “The Cars” is dead.


1782 days ago

Tonight - my first punk rock gig in 26 years

The last time I went to a punk rock gig was on December 8 1990 to see the Ramones at the Brixton Academy. Joey Ramone died the next April so I guess that was one of his last few performances. The time before was er...the Ramones again in the East Village in New York in the mid eighties. I have been to non punk concerts since 1990 but after almost 27 years I am off to a punk gig in Bristol tonight.


2623 days ago

The 57 year old Punk from The Stingrays makes my day on a train journey of two halves

Gone are the days when I could start my working day at 3.30 AM on Monday, down two bottles of wine during the day, work through the night and a full day Tuesday, stay up all night fretting about a Court case, suffer a High Court ordeal, down a pint of champagne and feel totally on top form on the Wednesday evening. I guess I am getting old. And so by the time I arrived at Paddington for the 7 PM to Bristol Temple Meads I felt like death warmed up and just wanted to get home to the cats and my bed. The Mrs is still with her mother.

I sat in my seat, wrapped up warm and tried to sleep. But life is not always easy and the first part of my journey just made me feel like even more of a grumpy old man who wants to leave this rotten country and sit on my Greek mountain away from everything that is ghastly abut Britain today.

Being the first off peak train it was crammed and the vague smell of cheap fast food wafted through the corridors since many of my fellow passengers had grabbed some junk to gorge upon as they rushed to get home.

In the seats behind me a kid was doing maths with his mum. 19 + 19 is 28 he insisted. The generation that will look after mine in retirement is not only thick as two short planks but also shows no deference or respect to its parents. The mother was simply wrong, the kid insisted as his voice rose. But I guess like all the other morons he will grow up to be a wannebee celeb so his stupidity won’t be an issue.

A drunk gave me a long gaze as our eyes met. I’m a nice drunk. He was not a nice drunk. I shifted my eyes rather glad that there was an older gentleman sitting between me and the drunk who promptly collapsed and spent most of the time between London and Swindon lying prostrate in the aisle or trying to do the sort of pointless exercises that only the totally inebriated consider demonstrate that they are half sober.  I and the other passengers exchanged embarrassed smiles at his antics.

First Great Western apologised in a blundering, we really do not give a fuck, but pretend we care way as the fast train turned out to be a very slow train indeed, all the way to Reading. As we crawled into the City where Wilde was jailed I thought lovingly of life at the Greek Hovel and my friends in Kambos and contemplated booking a flight next week and just not coming back.

Pulling into Didcot I saw that the older gentleman next to me was interested in shares. His mobile thingy device had messages from Hargreaves Lansdowne and so I piped up “I see you are interested in shares”. We started talking. We will gloss over his ownership of Afren which I warned him was not perhaps the wisest investment, something 100% vindicated today. He has a very prudent and sensible approach to creating a balanced portfolio weighted towards collectives. He knew his onions.

The chap is a social worker but not, I think, the sort that steals your kids if you vote UKIP, but what was truly fascinating is that he was and is a real punk rocker.


3327 days ago

Working late with the lovely Wendy James

It is just five days to the event, three days to the launch of project x and I staill have one article for to re-write which I wrote earlier but lost thanks to Microsoft 8 and must now remember. And so it is another all-nighter at Real Man Pizza sitting at a restaurant table hammering away at my keyboard.

But to keep me company I have the play list from my 40th birthday. That seems an eon ago. Right now it is the Ramones, next up it will be Sheffield's finest, Def Leppard followed by Ruby Tuesday (the Marianne Faithful version) and then onto Sleeper ( where is Louise Wener now?) but I started with Transmission Vamp with the delightful Wendy James who I am horrified to discover is 2 years older than me. I wonder what she is doing now? In case you had forgotten Wendy in her heyday (1989)...