Monthly Archives: December 2012

I kept them with me, babe. I put them with my own.

December photo

Where’s Wally (aka Alan?)

I’m not quite sure how 2012 has gone through quite so quickly – it’s bloody Christmas Eve already (well, it’s five minutes old).  Christmas Eve isn’t my favourite day of the year these days, so it’s perhaps apt that I’ll be off to work later ostensibly for a normal day’s slog.  It should be quiet, which is good as it’ll give me a chance to get stuff finished off.

So as 2012 draws to a close without the world ending, it seems a natural point for pausing and reflecting a bit.  I ended the year in style on the musical front, as well as lots of Ferocious Dog gigs there’s also been Levellers, Wonder Stuff and New Model Army at the back end of this year, not to mention The Crazy World of Arthur Brown and The Moulettes.  Some damn fine awesomeness upon the stage, and indeed, I made it backstage for the Levs!

On the football pitch Forest have undergone rather a few changes in this last year too, and well, probably need to undergo a few more to kick on to try to claw their way back to the top flight.  I must admit that whilst I have many excellent friends thanks to football, I’ve found the experience of going less motivating this last year.  I’m not quite sure why, but it quite often doesn’t quite live up to the exuberance you get from live music – maybe that shift in emphasis has given me an obvious basis for comparison.

Maybe it’s also that increased exposure to music that seems to have awoken that stark regret I’ve always harboured that I never picked up any musical ability at all, aside from my half-arsed didge-playing ability.  Our school had some really talented musicians in it, right from primary school and through secondary school and I either never really showed much interest, or perhaps somehow missed out opportunities to learn.  I’m not sure.  Knowing me it was probably my own doing, though!

I do remember embryonic guitar lessons courtesy of an enthusiastic primary school teacher and an acoustic guitar borrowed from my Grandad, but I don’t think the club lasted very long owing to a few genuinely talented players who perhaps understandably drew the focus of the teacher with the remedials being left very much behind!  I’m really tempted to buy a guitar and see if I can learn to play it a bit though – not to live performance standards, but for my own indulgence more than anything.

We shall see.  If there’s anything I’m very good at then it’s procrastinating!  I am watching a guitar on eBay though, and can be quite an impulsive so and so when I want to be.

Speaking of indulgences it was over the middle of 2012 that saw me drop from a 16.5 stone behemoth to a snake-hipped 12.5 stone dude.  It’s true a few Christmas pounds have already snuck back on but that’s something I’m not too fussed about, once 2013 is underway I can get back on to being sensible and shedding any results of over-indulgence.  The trick isn’t total denial, it’s not letting things slide quite as badly as they did last time!

Work too has changed at the back end of this year too, so there’s some adaptation and consideration to put in to there.  Sufficed to say I’m pleased to be preparing for a healthy slug of time away from the place to relax a bit, and eventually to start to think about some degree of future planning for my career.  I’m not very good at that, so I really do need to work out how to go about doing that.  It’s tricky when work itself has been so busy.

Still, one more day of that to get through then ’tis officially the season of good will for me.  Once Cat and I have shifted our confounded colds then it should be ace.  Rich and Em are hosting Christmas this year, so for me it will be the first ever time I’ve not been at a parental-hosted Christmas Day, having said that, the family will all be present – I’m really looking forward to some quality time with them before Forest inevitably bring me back down to Earth on Boxing Day!

But to be positive, there’s two Ferocious Dog gigs in the bank for next year already (including one they’ve kindly agreed to play on my birthday in the Rescue Rooms (for those wanting to ‘come dogging’ for my birthday, then tickets can be acquired here!)), and we’re off to Krakow at the end of February for Paul’s stag do which will be awesome.  So a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to anyone bored enough to have read to the end of this introspection.

Categories: blog, ferocious dog, iPhone / iPad / Mac, levellers | Leave a comment

We can share our endorphins..

It’s probably not escaped the attentions of many that I’ve been a bit of a grump of late – changes at work have been troublesome, and I succumbed to illness which I’m probably still coming out the back end of in terms of recovery.  That said, there’s been a plenty of good things too – live music aplenty, meeting the Levellers and other such things.

But something else that passed me by a little bit was that I haven’t been playing football for some time – I’d been carrying a thigh strain for a while, which was – despite my best denials – getting worse.  It had started out as something that might ‘go’ at the end of a game, developing to something that ended up with me not being able to kick the ball properly from the start of the game right through to hurting when I walked.

Having admitted I needed to rest it fate conspired to force the issue – I was ill, then the Nottingham branch of Powerleague where we play flooded and combined with a clash of diaries (which involved using going to see Jeff Wayne’s War of the Worlds at the Arena on Tuesday – which was AMAZING) it’s forced my hand into not playing ’til today.

Running around – admittedly in the freezing cold – felt good, and as I took my first tentative ‘substantial’ kick at the ball it was great to not feel that frustrating pang of pain in my right thigh – it was fine.  Indeed, despite warning the chap that picks the teams that I was a few weeks out so not fully fit, I didn’t struggle as much as I feared in keeping up and we managed to snag the win in a close fought game.

I’ve read before that your wellbeing (not just physical, but mental) can be enhanced through exercise – and I think I’ve been missing my football more than I’d realised.  So it was good to get a game under the belt, a few goals and a good win.  With Christmas party season upon us there’ll be a few more games that I’ll miss out on – but at least that’s for positive reasons rather than negative ones like injury, illness or floods!

Tomorrow I’m off to Derby to see Simon Friend’s Seismic Survey (Simon’s one of the Levellers) with some friends and staying over (so decadent, Derby ain’t exactly the other end of the country) and Saturday sees a trip to the City Ground, a Christmas dinner with my Forest friends and a trip up to Warsop to see Ferocious Dog finish off Dogfest, which is already a rather splendid sounding weekend before we factor in Masterchef finalist Michelle Burge coming round to consult us on food she’s going to cook for us a week tomorrow!

In an unusual move I’ve actually elected to organise a birthday party next year too – okay, when I say organise, that’s over-egging it – Ferocious Dog are playing the Rescue Rooms so I’ve just invited all my friends to grab a ticket and celebrate with me in the finest style I can envisage!  Rock and roll!

Whilst I’m focusing on the positive it’s good to not have a bloody ridiculous moustache any more!  Below is a half-arsed montage of Movember 2012 from my point of view!

Categories: blog, ferocious dog, levellers, videos | Leave a comment

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