These are things I’ve liked a lot recently:
Novel Elizabeth is Missing by Emma Healey.
Blog post by Brandon Knoll about colouring our own lives.
Illustration of a ‘black cat on black furniture‘ by Felicia Chiao on Tumblr.
Bear illustration by Little Oil on Tumblr.
British sitcom Upstart Crow.
Is the EU serious about coming to a deal? David Robertson raises some concerns.
Song on a CD bought from a charity shop recently: Why Does It Always Rain on Me? (Travis). Even before I figured out the culprit, it was in my head all the time. 😀
Another song: One Last Chance (James Morrison). I’ve had it a while, but only just started paying it attention.
Last but not least… from personal experience I would say there’s a great deal of truth in this article… I wish I’d read it when I was 16. 🙂
My birthday was some time ago, but there was a palaver with computer speakers having to be sent back. This is a little bluetooth one for the iPad that I chose instead. My sister ordered it in a lightning deal… it was 100% claimed in no time at all, but she was able to bag it when someone else let it go (thank you).
Now I’ve made it all blurry and coloured and you can’t even see it properly…
Truth to tell, I’m not sure why I’m telling the blogosphere about this, except that I’ve never heard anything from the iPad clearly… my hearing is too poor, and usually someone else has to tell me it’s playing sounds I wasn’t aware of.
There should be a way of muting it for good so it *never* does anything like that, and this particular lack in the iPad’s design makes me angry.
Now, I didn’t get a speaker for the iPad just so I would know to turn it off… that wouldn’t work anyway if it turns itself off after a spell without audio. No… I got it because I thought it might be nice to hear things on my iPad for a change, especially some of the tracks I bought.
It’s a lovely little speaker but it becomes a nexus of intense vibration when playing. Would you pick it up mid-song? I’m afraid to!
I was very happy when The Pachelbel Canon came on. Soothing, and a lovely birthday present, thank you. 🙂
I wrote this post at the end of March 2017 and never published it. I came across it again just recently, and now that that time is a little way behind, I thought “why not? I’ll just clear it off the deck and move on.”
When a song gets into your head and spins around relentlessly, there’s usually a reason why it got there in the first place. Sometimes it’s just a passing word that attracts it, or a phrase, or possibly an experience. A lot of the time you never figure out what that was.
What’s disconcerting is when a song gets in your head and you are not even sure of the words, but when you look them up online, they perfectly suit your mood or circumstances. It’s even stranger when it’s a song you’ve not thought about in a long time.
In my head now is Soley Soley by Middle of the Road, and it’s been there three days and three nights.
I suspect the ‘inspiration’ is that the Hairy Bikers were cooking on TV and mentioned sole in passing! All it takes is one word, and suddenly you have a hoary old song camping in your head.
Earlier, I was saying it usually suits your mood, but at times it could be that your mood adjusts to suit the song… you can feel a little dip sometimes as the song kicks in.
In my journal I often make a note of whatever song is bothering me — when I reread an entry years later, I get bothered by it all over again, ha ha. Just a little joke I play on myself.
Lately, I don’t know what the point of the journal is… it’s like information overload. It used to matter, but now I don’t feel like writing in it any more. My old hobbies don’t interest me. Nothing really matters.
I’m in a sleepy mood, though. Perhaps when the weather gets better, so will I.
I wrote the following last night, then slept on it. No mind-mapping on this occasion (perhaps it shows). Today the sun is out, news is good and the mood chart heading for lighter values.
I took it into my head to keep a mood chart, for no particular reason, and just now my mood is going up and down like a yo yo. You have no idea the number of different plates we are spinning — each one of us has issues and hopes, ranging from the minuscule (what to do with home-grown chillis) to the mind-blowingly gargantuan (the miraculous Brexit). It’s an interesting time to start the project, but poorly chosen! Writing a blog post when you’re in the depths of despair is never a good idea either.
Half the time I suspect my sole aim in life is keeping myself from thinking too much. Letting your brain get fogged up with useless data or keeping it busy with insignificant projects like mood charts, mind-mapping digital art, databasing your CD collection and writing letters to the world (blog posts)… they’re all just ways of anaesthetizing yourself for a while.
Music makes you happy at times; it’s like your own private cocoon of good beats. Then you go away and get ready for bed, and and it turns on you… wails in your head like a Greek chorus of restless ghosts, and your mood gets very blue. Some songs I’ve learned to avoid because they are black holes of melodious depression.
One I conjured up just now is the opposite of that. Somehow it refuses to be turned into anything quite as miserable, though it’s old, therefore dripping with nostalgia… I relate it to places we don’t live in any more, and to family members long since gone. And yet…
I will keep it in my head for the rest of the night; it’s a tonic! You can have it when I’m done, but not till then.
Sleep is another good way of passing the time — you forget your cares for a while, even if your dreams introduce you to a distorted group of new ones. The best part is just after you turn off the light, when you curl up in the warm with your arm over Little Witness, feeling nobody can get at you till dawn pries at your blinds.
In the period before you fall asleep, you line up your most pleasant thoughts and count them. “These things I shall do tomorrow… beginning with deleting that mood chart or changing it to something different. Then I’ll re-read my latest blog post and see if it’s improved at all during the night.” Sometimes they do. Other times they turn into twisted heaps of rage and and angst, and the best thing you can do with them is put them out of their misery before anybody else spots them.
One thing that’s pretty bad, though, is if you’re reading old posts in your blog and you discover such a sea-change happened when you weren’t looking, and most of your posts have turned into grotesque, windblown skeletons you would rather not know about. As a result, I either avoid reading anything I’ve written that’s older than six months, or I delete these horrors when I trip over any.
Even while we distract ourselves from looking at life too closely, we distract ourselves from our own past distractions. It’s easy to live only in the moment… just sing Mouldy Old Dough to yourself and fall asleep.
I was going upstairs with an armful of stuff when suddenly the bluetooth keyboard and the iPad rushed together down the stairs. I didn’t see the keyboard fall, and it landed off to the side near the letterbox, but as I watched in horror, the iPad cartwheeled merrily from step to step, gathering speed. When the smart cover flew open, the screen flared out briefly, then the iPad smacked against the cupboard at the foot of the stairs… and all went dark.
In the ominous pause, my mother came out of the sitting room and stared at the still figure lying at her feet, some distance from me at the top of the stairs. Giggling in an embarrassed way, I started down.
I’m sure the iPad’s life flashed before its eyes when it was falling, but what flashed before mine was the price of a new one. Fortunately there was no damage — both machines were intact and started working immediately. In fact the lock screen was waiting blandly for me as soon as I lifted the cover.
It’s an old iPad. Yesterday I was trying to update it to iOS 9.3 and it kept telling me it couldn’t verify because I wasn’t online. I found an article explaining that some older mobiles were shutting out their users after updating, so Apple has temporarily withheld the release from all elderly devices.
That explains why the red flag suddenly winked out on my Settings icon a couple of days back. I thought that was odd — it was as though someone had been there… I almost felt the wind of his passing. The ‘please update’ nagging boxes kept appearing, though.
Well, it may be an old iPad that has had its share of ‘ups and downs’, but I’m not yet ready to pay the price of a brand new one, whatever way it gets ‘bricked’.
And after all
You’re my wonderwall
Daily Post prompt: price.
Bought four more 59p songs from iTunes. In no particular order:
Budapest — George Ezra
Good song… maybe a little croony, but the vocals are clear.
Home Again — Michael Kiwanuka
Didn’t put it on my original list, then wondered what the song in my head was! Had to scrabble through the likeliest of the 50-plus songs on iTunes to find it again, and it was near the end. Typical…
Bad Blood — Ryan Adams
Heard the Taylor Swift version last summer and liked it then. Being older and less into ‘boppy’, this one’s more my style. 🙂
Wonderwall — Ryan Adams
EDIT: Nearly didn’t buy it, but it’s good. Perhaps a little ‘fey’ for me, and by that I mean barely hanging onto the world of the living.
I said earlier that Wonderwall is my favourite of the four, but I was wrong… More and more, it’s Home Again. Tune, voice, lyrics, soul — it stays in my mind for a reason.
EDIT 2: Or then again, I’m swinging back to Wonderwall. I don’t know why I seem to experience the songs differently every time I listen.
Wandered back in to iTunes and found another: Learn to Fly (Foo Fighters). I don’t fancy linking to the video (!) but I love that kind of song.
“Those are the first three digital tracks I ever bought and so far seem to be the last.”
I spoke too soon! Got curious and had a snoop round the iTunes UK store today, which was my undoing. Found an orange cache of Hit Songs for 59p each, and had to try them all. A few I had already, like Brown Eyed Girl by Van Morrison, but most I didn’t recognize.
Bought the following:
I’ve only heard them a few times each so far, but the best is possibly the Pentatonix. Possibly, I said…
Payphone reminds me of caffeinated sweets — you want more but never quite slake your thirst.
Rude is my style of song! Much of my collection is reggae.
Anyway, with ‘new’ hits for me to listen to, life feels different.
I’m laughing the clouds away
I hear what the flowers say
And drink every drop of rain
And I see
Places that I have been
In ways that I’ve never seen…
[from Love is Easy]
Looking around the blogosphere put me in the mood for a rambling type of post. I was going to say someone in particular inspired me, someone I’ve known for a while, but it crossed my mind they might not enjoy having attention drawn to them as a ‘rambler’… thanks for nothing, they’d say! Now, if I said “I was inspired by the beauty and and intelligence of this blog,” that would be something else, though they might still suspect me of wanting something.
I could have looked at the long list of Daily Prompts for a blog idea, but who wants to do that all the time? It keeps me ticking over, and I’m grateful, but a blog is a blog and sometimes we want our own ideas. It’s my blog and I’ll ramble if I want to.
The other day I bought digital tracks for the first time in my life.
I usually get CDs but they are becoming harder to find. Some are too expensive.
I had trouble tracking down the right version of the Pachelbel Canon. Even if it bears the magic name ‘James Galway’ it’s not guaranteed to be the version I’m thinking of. A while ago I bought a CD which I thought had the James Galway / Glen Spreen version. The Peerless 2×2 version of Canon D sounded more like James Galway than the James Galway version did! Turns out there’s an older version of the CD with the Glen Spreen version, but it changed to something else in the newer version.
End result: turning to iTunes in desperation and clicking the ’99p’ button. Having clicked on one, I threw caution to the howling winds and bought more.
Sunface I just love. I have that album on vinyl (Everybody’s Angel). I have my old hi-fi in the room but the speakers aren’t working, so I was missing the song. It’s the same with Goodbye My Friend, which was on the album Cry Like a Rainstorm, Howl Like the Wind.
Those are the first three digital tracks I ever bought and so far seem to be the last. I still prefer CDs if I can get them. Although… I’m going to have to get Rockelbel’s Canon (on CD). Poor cellists… lol.
Life’s so fragile and love’s so pure
We can’t hold on but we try
We watch how quickly it disappears
And we never know why
[verse from Goodbye My Friend]