Two Songs & A Book

28 Mar

First, Alex singing Celie’s song I’m Here from The Colour Purple in Miscast the other week:

Next, do yourself a favour – two favours – sign up to BookBub and download lots of free books to your Kindle…and then delete half of them because they’re terrible, but at least you didn’t pay for them; and the good ones are worth wading through the dross.Neanderthal Seeks Human (Knitting in the City, #1)

And do it TODAY, so you can get a free copy while it’s available of Penny Reid’s Neanderthal Seeks Human.  She writes witty, intelligent romances with quirky characters and I own every book she’s written and hate that I discovered her while she’s still writing because I have to wait for the next book, and the next, and the next…you get the idea.

How can I convey the depth of my love for her books?  If I tell you I would spend my Malteser money on them, would that do it?  

My favourite line: This is the mammals all over again.

Go and get it NOW!  It’s FREE!

Finally, Alex and the other Colla Voce Boys in Chicago’s Cell Block Tango:

A True-ish Story

20 Mar

A Cup of Flour

They say truth is stranger than fiction; sometimes, it’s on par.

I laughed when I saw this cartoon, for something similar once happened to my mother.

Forty years ago, we had just moved to Runcorn and Mum had met our new next door neighbours but no one else.  She answered the door one morning and there stood a strange woman, holding a plate containing an egg and two bacon rashers.

Stranger: Can you please help me?  I’m a bit short for my breakfast; have you got a sausage to lend me?

[Bemused] Mum: Um, erm, sure, yes, hold on a sec.

Later that day, Mum saw our next door neighbour and told her all about the strange Image result for full english breakfastbreakfast-begging woman.

[Laughing] Neighbour: Oh, that was Irene*.  Don’t worry about it: she came to me for the beans!

Irene and her family eventually moved to a better part of town, into a large, posh house.  I wonder how many neighbours’ sausages helped to pay for it?Overnight Blueberry French Toast Recipe : so easy to make the night before and pop in the oven the next morning. A delicious breakfast casserole recipe with the surprise of blueberries and cream cheese and a lovely blueberry sauce topping. Perfect brunch recipe for a special occasion.

*Names changed to preserve privacy: ‘Irene’ is still alive; no doubt living on the neighbours’ Overnight Blueberry French Toast (breakfast has changed a lot in forty years).

SElf-Explanatory

13 Mar

Here are some videos of Alex performing.  The first is from The Boy Next Door, a concert of the music of Hugh Martin.  There are more videos if you let it play out; and The Mamas & The Papas fans might enjoy a new girl group’s rendition of one song in particular:

The second is a compilation of snippets from a show he did last year, The Colla Voce Theatre Cabaret, made up of songs from modern musicals:

This weekend Alex was involved in several events at Sheffield University’s Platform festival, in aid of Cavendish Cancer Care.   On Friday he sang in the SUPAS Showcase, playing George III in Hamilton, singing You’ll Be Back:

 

Thursday to Saturday he’s performing in Miscast, again with Colla Voce Theatre:  

Image result for Adhesive

Hit the link to buy tickets if you happen to be in the Sheffield area.

If you haven’t heard of Miscast, it’s ‘an annual benefit in which Broadway stars perform songs from musical roles which they would be very unlikely to land in…’ [Playbill].

And finally, I have a belated Christmas gift for you: I don’t think I’ve mentioned that he had his first paid acting gig at Christmas…playing one of Santa’s Experience Elves at the Trafford Centre.  I love that he did that as it gives me another opportunity to poke fun at him; I don’t even need to say anything – just put the pic out there:

 

 

 

March Repeats

6 Mar

Here are some bits ‘n’ pieces from March 2010, because nothing says ‘tired blogger’ like recycled writing.

Image result for funny playstation

On a Broken PS3

Sony, intimidated by my threat to mobilise the world, have fixed the problem. Or, to be strictly accurate, the PS3 has fixed the problem itself. Just what we need: intelligent computers. A few tiny steps from sentience and then we’ll have Arnold Schwarzenneggers all over the place.

Let me terminate this topic by telling you that Spud is at this very moment catching up on last night’s playing; I can hear him muttering parent-approved swear words under his breath (blast/fart/crap).

He reminds me of his father, who would come home from work in the early days of our marriage and play games on his monochrome screened, 20 megabyte hard driven computer, and scream the foulest language at it. When I asked him why he played them when they had such a deleterious effect on his mood, he replied, ‘Because it relaxes me.’

Proving that even back in the Eighties computers were already smarter than some people.

Image result for funny horse

On a Horse

I read this years ago and I have always wanted to share it.  It is supposed to be a true story;  you’ll have to decide for yourself.  I soooo hope it is.

The Queen was entertaining a visiting head of state; they were parading down the Mall in a horse-drawn carriage, chatting nicely, when one of the horses made what can only be described as a rude noise.

QEII: I’m so sorry about that.

HoS: Please don’t apologise; if you hadn’t said anything, I’d have assumed it was the horse.

Image result for funny exercise

On Exercise

I was cheered by a report in the Telegraph* that says dog owners get more exercise than non-dog-owning, gym-going folk. 

*Yes, I know the report appeared months ago but give me a break; I’m exhausted from all the walking.

This is true (it says so in the papers so it must be).  My dog has short legs – shorter even than mine – and it was recommended that he get half-an-hour’s walking a day, which means that I get half-an-hour’s walking a day.  He often gets more, of course, but only if it’s not cold, not wet, not dark, not boring and I’m annoyed with the Hub.  If I’m being honest, if it was just the last qualification we would have daily three-hour walks.  

Toby also runs around a lot in the house – she’s standing up: there must be food!  He sneezed; I wonder if there’s any food?  The big one’s home; I bet she makes food.  He likes to play tug with his gezillion toys, which means that we play tug with his gezillion toys as well.   He’s very demanding; maybe we should have had another kid instead; at least they grow up and leave you: we’re stuck with this fella until he departs for that great park in the sky.  Hope there’s less poo up there.

I was also chuffed to notice a related article which claims that playing Sudoku burns off more calories than is contained in a Hobnob.  Me, I am liking this newspaper.  When I spotted that ‘Comfort eating does work’ and that superdiets are ‘based on myths’, I had to roll around in a box of Maltesers to celebrate.
*

I am a little surprised, given this rigorous exercise & diet regime, that I don’t look like Posh Spice**.  Next time I am exercising the dog  I will put away my Sudoku puzzle as I sit virtuously on my park bench, and exercise the little grey cells instead: I’m sure M. Poirot will be able to help me.

After all, we look so alike.

**I first typed, ’I am a little surprised that I don’t like Posh Spice’.***  Think it was a Freudian slip?  I don’t; I rather like her, but why does she never smile with all that she’s got to be happy about?  I bet she’s hungry.  She should follow my diet then she could look terrific and be cheerful.

***Then I corrected it and accidentally wrote, ‘I am a little surprised that I don’t loo like Posh Spice’.  Don’t think we’ll go there.

February Repeats

13 Feb

DSCN3828

I’ve been wanting to tell you about my kitchen cupboards since before Christmas (yes, my life really is that dull) but I haven’t had time to write the post (dull but busy), so here’s a random selection of bits of old posts from February 2010.

Enjoy!

***

I always bin chain letters but this one really scared me; I don’t know where it came from:

This letter was started by a woman like yourself in the hope of bringing relief to tired and discontented women.  Just send a copy of this letter to five of your friends who are equally tired and discontented.  Then bundle up your husband or boyfriend and send him to the woman whose name appears at the top of the list.  When your name comes to the top of the list you will receive 16,337 men and one of them is bound to be better than the one you already have.

DO NOT BREAK THE CHAIN.  ONE WOMAN WHO DID THAT GOT HER OWN MAN BACK.

***

H.L. Mencken:

Journalism is to politician as dog is to lamp-post.

***

The Hub:

The bloke in the car behind me had his finger so far up his nose he scraped the dandruff off his scalp.

***

Jason Manford in The Sun:

Dear Cat,

If your idea of a gift is a dead mouse at the foot of my stairs then please leave me off your gift list or get me some HMV vouchers.

Your Human

Dear Human,

It’s not a gift, it’s a warning.

Regards,

Your cat

***

On Siblings

Tilly Bud: I asked you to buy the toilet rolls; now please let me pay for them.

Little Brother: Get lost, knobhead.

TB: Oh, come on; please.

LB: Just think of me every time you wipe your bum.

TB: I already do.

TB&LB: Raucous laughter

 

21 Today!

15 Jan

Linda & Alex 15011996

Happy birthday, Spud!  You survived me to manhood; you deserve a medal…or at the very least, a trip to the RSC to see Simon Russell Beale smash Prospero.

Oh, wait, we did that yesterday!

This is you, handsome as always:

Displaying IMG-20170114-WA0000.jpeg

This is you, letting me be in the picture this time:

Displaying IMG-20170114-WA0002.jpeg

We love you; we’re proud of you; please get rich so that you can look after us in our old age.  That’s why we had you, after all.

Here’s a birthday poem for you:

Happy birthday to Spud
You’re not quite a dud
You like Shakespeare
And have big hair
You’re a good kid, though weird*

*Seriously, what do you expect?  It’s almost midnight last night and I was out on trains, eating chips, and at the theatre all day; if that isn’t good mothering, I don’t know what is.  Don’t expect great poetry as well.

Happy birthday, darling boy!  

PS Angry Men!  Snow!

 

You Lerner Something New Every Day

22 Dec

Sorry!  Sorry!  I know I owe replies and visits for more than one post but at the moment my life is hectic; I can offer no reasonable dialectic, simply that my use of time by default must be selective; in truth, it is somewhat eclectic…hence this frantic pseudo-poem.  Oh no!  Must you really be going?

I also apologise that this poem is catalectic*

*adjective:   (verse) metrically incomplete; especially lacking one or more syllables in the final metrical foot 

Right, now that I’ve got that out of my system, I really do apologise for being so neglectic.  If I believed in New Year’s Resolutions, I’d make one to blog properly i.e. stop being so rude.  Fortunately for me, I don’t; so I won’t.

Kidding!

I want to wish you all a Happy Christmas so I’ll do that by shamelessly promoting Alex with videos from his last show, Lerner Without Loewe.  Alex sang twelve songs with Matthew Malone’s 35 piece orchestra, all with lyrics by Alan J. Lerner (Camelot, My Fair Lady, etc.) and music composed by someone other than Frederick Loewe.  Breathe, dear reader…I won’t post all twelve here, or you’ll be watching until next Christmas.

In this first trailer, the first speaker, Professor McHugh, is a leader in the academic field of Broadway musicals.  I confess, I’m not certain how big that field is, but the man really knows his stuff:

Alex appears halfway through this next one but the first song is worth listening to; Lerner’s brilliance with lyrics really shines through – listen for how he rhymes ‘rhododendron’ with ‘friends’:

A quick one, in rehearsal:

This next one makes me simultaneously proud and queasy – Alex sings so sweetly but the song is from what amounts to Lolita – The Musical, and the lyrics reflect that:

More rehearsal:

And more (Alex is halfway through again):

This one, also in rehearsal, has Alex singing a song that was written between 1936-1938, words & music both by Lerner, which has probably not been performed since, meaning that Alex is quite possibly the first person to sing it in eighty years.  This is also probably the only recording of this song, so, just like the secret mentioned in the lyrics, here’s a secret from me to you: he fluffed one of the lines.  Heehee!

This song was written for three parts but Alex sings it all:

Another good one sung by Debra Finch:

Last one, from rehearsals.   The final song is the only one I’d heard before, and it turned out to be my least favourite because there were just so many great songs on the night:

You deserve some eggnog after that marathon watch. 

Merry Christmas!

 

Nicola Hulme Author

Exploring creative writing and learning every day

Worldly Winds

It's not easy being me!

Vivinfrance's Blog

mainly poetry, also quilts, pictures, life-writing and the occasional short story.

Unpicked:Restitched

Where is the heart of Stockport?

Grains of Sand

notices and reflections in ministry

The Cvillean

The adventures of little read writing Hood

%d bloggers like this: