Double mmm.

6:57 – Rise

7:30 – Sitting.

8:00 – Breakfast.

8:30 – DoA, Guitar work. Good calisthenic stuff, but we’re both a bit vague and begin vague on the Invention would just depress us, so we do slow careful Third Relation practice. I realise something about the descending line – when I play it I try to mute the open strings, but the point of that section is the danger that the open strings pose: they have to be open and at risk of chiming out. It’s like musical knife-throwing or trapezing.

10:15 – Into the Maisy again, just one more mechanism to get working. I finalise a number of spreads. I also call a building society to find out why my password doesn’t work. It turns out this is because I don’t have an online account with them. I do now. While making this call, I have to collect a package at the front door. Multitasking again.

13:00 – Lunch: Stirfry Udon by Haru. Good stuff. Then we drink tea (PG/Earl Grey combo).

14:00 – Haru goes out. Back to it, finalising the final spread of the Maisy book. Apparantly what I sent over works and I have to go in on Tuesday. Fair enough. Also working on that rogue font, plunging into the world of the FontLab support forums. However hard I try I can’t reproduce the problem on my computer.

19:00 – Although it’s my turn to cook, I remember that I promised my father I’d check out his house while he’s away and think I’ll combine it with a DVD raid. I walk all the way over there and find that I’ve got the wrong keys, so I walk all the way back again.

20:00 – Dinner -marvellous spicy lamb and rice. Mmm. I like spicy food. And spiced tea to follow. Double mmm.

21:00 – Watch a wonderful movie that I had imported from the U.S. as it’s not available in Europe – called After Life in English, the original Japanese title is Wonderful Life. It ran for a week at the ICA over five years ago and I think it turned up on satellite once. Haru provides me with a commentary on the subtitling and details of the story.

23:00 – Downloading freeware plugins and audio stuff, then play three songs with very dry, cracked voice and imprecise memory of how the chords are played. Perhaps I’ll go open-miking next week.

23:57 – Begin writing this.

00:16 – Complete and post. Day off tomorrow.

my head is full of cotton wool

7:07 – Rise, shower.

7:35 – Sitting.

8:10 – Breakfast.

8:40 – DoA, guitar work. A bit of EotN, and I finally get to the end of the Invention. Perhaps one day I’ll get a chance to work on transitions.

10:15 – Down to the Maisying. Today’s work is finalising the flaps that, for some inexplicable reason, don’t work. In a couple of places it’s the result of me taking a very long time to do the obvious things, although they weren’t obvious before. I do a range of different things for my work, one problem with this is that every time I do a job of a particular kind (in this case a pop-up book) I have to learn all over again almost how to do it and what the “feel” of that particular kind of book is.

12:30 – begin cooking dinner – pasta with tomato and mushroom sauce.

13:10 – Dinner.

14:00 – Return to Maisy.

16:00 – Tea, then a lot more Maisying, with a smidgen of Riddellery in there too.

19:20 – Dinner, although some final Walkery is happening simultaneously.

21:15 – H and I meet with guitars, but we’re both very tired. I, in particular, feel like my head is full of cotton wool. Not a lot very focused happens.

I’m dribbling pathetically.

22:45 – Begin writing this.

22:57 – Complete and post.

similarly sandwiched

7:02 – Rise, shower.

7:30 – Sitting. Not a good one today, my mind wanders a lot.

8:10 – Breakfast.

8:30 – DoA, Guitar work. Challenging primary work and more Invention. The difficulty of ‘getting’ transitions.

10:15 – down to the morning’s Maisying.

13:00 – Lunch. Pasta and tuna salad, by Haru.

14:00 – Back to Maisy. Haru goes out for a walk.

16:30 – Haru returns and we have tea and biscuits. More corrections come through. Also a call regarding colouring in fairies. Mmm. Apparantly there are a lot of them, but they’re not too difficult.

18:30 – Sue arrives again with more and more involved corrections. It’s beginning to feel (as it often does with these jobs) that I’ll still be doing it in a nursing home in my eighties. She leaves at about 20:00. We appear to be in approximately the same place we were yesterday, only slightly better informed.

20:50 – Fish fingers and chips, sort of involutionary meal but I for one don’t have the energy for much more. Sometimes it feels like the energy required to make something that’s not chips wouldn’t be recompensed by eating something that’s not chips. Sometimes.

21:30 – Watch a documentary about the late, highly lamented and quite extraordinary Vivian Stanshall, sandwiched in between a lot of recent Simpsons episodes. Try to find another, similarly sandwiched, documentary from a couple of years ago, to no avail.

22:51 – Begin writing this.

23:05 – Complete and post.

if I miss a transition I run into a buffer somewhere down the line

7:03 – Rise, shower.

7:35 – Sitting.

8:10 – Breakfast.

8:30 – DoA (fives in hands and feet with counting – amazing thing, there are moments when I can feel different counts peeling off in different directions in my mind, whatever that might be). Also a lot of work on the Invention, which is quite addictive. The problem I’m having is transitions: the fingerings I’ve worked out are quite specific and if I miss a transition I run into a buffer somewhere down the line.

10:00 – In the morning I’m waiting for clearance regarding the Maisy final stages but they’re not forthcoming. I practise the Invention and vacuum all the floors. Also get a call from someone for whom a typeface behaves strangely. I hear from them about every six months – they call me to say that it doesn’t work, I make changes with instructions to say that they should test it and tell me what happens (I can’t reproduce the problem on my computer) and six months later they call me again to say it’s not working properly.

12:30 – begin cooking lunch. It’s supposed to be a mushroom omelette, but it turns out to be scrambled egg with mushrooms in it.

14:30 – I finalise another Maisy spread.

15:30 – I go the the Elephant & Castle shopping centre and spend a long time browsing in the hardware shop there and in Woolworth’s. In the former I buy soda crystals (cleaning stuff) and rubber gloves, and in the latter a scrubbing brush, a waste-paper basket, a laundry hanger and some string (on several occasions recently I’ve fruitlessly looked for string).

18:00 – I clean paintwork in the corridor and bathroom. Also a patch of wall by the bedroom door. Anything that gets the dirt out is OK with me.

18:45 – The famous Sue of Walker Books arrives to brief me on the latest changes to the Maisy Book that was supposed to go to the printer last Wednesday. Apparantly all the different departments (Production, who are in charge of getting the book printed, the paste-up department, who are making working dummies (it’s a pop-up book), her art director, who’s very strict) are getting fractious over the lateness. She is philosophical about this (she has a natural grasp of the aphorism regarding looking cheerful. She also find that zen helps). Haru makes tea and we go through the mock ups. Tomorrow will be more involved than today, Maisy-wise.

19:15 – Sue leaves.

20:00 – Dinner stir fry by Haru.

21:00 – Sitting on the sofa with my Powerbook. I appear to be checking out how-to information regarding decorating. There’s a lot of it out there. Apparantly painting a room is more complicated and precise than “slosh the paint around on the walls until they’re more or less the colour you want them to be”. Who knew?

23:26 – Begin writing this.

23:45 – Complete and post.

mind-expanding chocolate mousse

7:07 – Rise.

7:30 – Sitting.

8:10 – Breakfast.

8:30 – DoA, Guitar Work. A notion from L1 that I return to is that of allowing – allowing the right hand to fall when plucking the strings; trusting the legs to know the pattern they’re supposed to be tapping rather than checking up on them all the time.

10:00 – Final final Maisying.

11:00 – between now and Lunchtime, I do odd corrections as instructed from Walker’s. When I’m not doing these I’m doing odd jobs – washing the living room door (strange as that sounds), and the skirting board behind the rubbish bin, and the front of the fan heater. I also put the small pin board on the wall in the hallway.

13:00 – Lunch – Potato pancakes by Haru.

14:00 – Back to the sporadic Maisying. Final final final tweaks. Eventually the denoument is postponed until tomorrow, when there’ll be actual dummies for Sue (the designer) to look at.

16:00 – to the Supermarket to buy essentials. Chaos in there, as it usually is. I also drop in to Tl?n Books, and walk out empty-handed, a trick I’ve been working on.

17:30 – Playing with Logic Audio again.

19:10 – Begin cooking at about the time I said I’d serve Dinner. Oh, well. The soundtrack to dinner preparation (at first) is the tracks that I’ve made with Logic Audio loops over the last few days. A couple I particularly like, but I can’t honestly say they’re “my” tracks in any sensible way.

20:00 – Dinner – the spicy lamb and cous cous that I just cooked, with dessert (mind-expanding chocolate mousse by Haru. Waistband-expanding, too, I reckon. Delicious, though).

21:00 – Put the DVD of Donnie Darko on. Every time I see this film I get something else from it, largely because over the two or three years I’ve had the DVD the way I see the world has changed so much.

23:00 – Begin writing this.

23:15 – Complete and post.

probably to do with energy

7:09 – Rise. The alarm goes off at 7:07. Today I was fairly awake from 6:00 onwards, ready to get up at 7:00. I must have fallen asleep again at about 6:56, then woken up by the alarm clock.

My ability to wake up before the alarm clock goes off is a measure of something or other, probably to do with energy.

7:30 – Sitting.

8:15 – Breakfast.

8:45 – DoA (onto a new level – deceptively simple and then dead fiendish); Guitar work, Invention.

10:00 – Check email, drink coffee, generally chill.

11:00 – House work – I clean the bathroom, and then when I’ve done that I clean some of the light switches, the shower switch and the intercom, which I don’t usually notice even when I’m in the most frantic cleaning frenzy. They need a lot of cleaning… One thing I learned in Germany was that all I need to clean most stuff is vinegar and water, although everything does end up smelling a bit funny. Environmentally friendly if you don’t object to a vinegarish environment.

12:00 – Begin playing with loops in Logic Audio. It’s very easy to get a sort of loose groove going. Then it’s far to easy to listen to this thing going around and around.

12:30 – Begin cooking lunch.

13:10 – Lunch is served. Very yellow house (pasta with fried courgettes and tomato sauce and grated cheese). Afterwards we finish off the rice crackers (Tesco style).

Back to playing with Logic Audio.

16:00 – Tea. After tea I look at a number of things on the internet. In particular I check out what open mikes and small venues are around. It interests me that a lot of them seem to have a website even if, in some cases, they don’t actually have a venue. I look at the listings: I don’t recognise any of the names of the performers, really. I’ve been away a long time. I may dive back in, as it’s good practise, but tough.

18:30 – Begin cooking dinner.

19:10 – Serve dinner: totally inauthentic soup with chinese-style noodles. Afterwards we have tea with rice crackers (Japan style).

20:00 – Playing with Reason and Logic. Or at least music software of those names. Loops and bleeps and so forth. Eventually the program crashes and I lose what I’ve done, but this isn’t a particular tragedy.

22:13 – Begin writing this.

22:36 – Complete and post.


7:07 – I’m woken by the alarm clock for the first time in weeks. Shower.

7:30 – Sitting.

8:00 – I have breakfast. As I’m finishing, Haru gets up and has hers.

9:00 – DoA/Guitar work. We make incursions into page two of the invention.

10:30 – Begin getting the Maisy together, but it’s a lot slower today: there’s less of it and the corrections are further apart.

13:00 Stop for Lunch. A tin of tuna and some rice.

15:00 – Speak to Ben about the Riddell corrections. Only one, apparantly. I’m surprised.

15:40 – Haru arrives back while I’m talking to Sue at Walker about Maisy corrections.

16:00 we have tea and cake. After this I do the corrections I got before tea.

19:00 – Stop Maisying for the day. I don’t have to do anything over the weekend. Do a couple of web things.

20:00 – DInner – extraordinary soup.

20:30 – Sit on the sofa with Haru, a cup of tea, cake and the internet.

21:43 – Begin writing this.

Consolidating the Invention.

7:03 – Rise, shower.

7:30 – Sitting.

8:10 – Breakfast.

8:30 – DoA/Guitar Work. Consolidating the Invention. The next few bars will be interesting, but we decide to save that for another day.

Sorting things out. No Maisying today

10:45 – We go to visit a friend in the country, so a day out and slightly off.

20:30 – Long wait in the fish and chip shop, return home and eat chips. Internet. Currently (21:56) a DVD of Spaced is playing, but I’m not sure for how much longer. Bed soonish, anyway.