eh, Mr Livingstone?

Up, astonishingly, just after eight; sitting; breakfast.

Stretching and shower, and I decide to wear the suit I got at Salvation Army the other day. Hurrah.

I get a lift up to Windsor Road to borrow an amplifier from Ben. Gift of a bottle of sparking wine from Pa, also.

Back at the flat I somehow end up trying out another bit of productivity software. Sad, really.

Lunch is pasta: nice.

After lunch, some website work, some sorting and timetable stuff.

In the evening:Traditional New Year’s Eve Soba; do the toast early while listening to Colossal Youth by Young Marble Giants, one of my favourite records ever; eat chocolate and watch Dinner For One. I like the idea that this creaky old English Music Hall sketch is becoming a world tradition. It’s also very funny, actually.

Drink the wine for new year, while watching the fireworks on the TV. We look out of the window. We can’t see the fireworks, but we can see people over the road who’ve parked their cars and got out to look back at the river. It’s all very impressive, anyway.

A lot of the fireworks are set around the London Eye, making it all look a bit like a Pink Floyd concert. There’s an idea for next year, eh, Mr Livingstone?

It finishes with a huge explosion: the sound manages to travel down microphones, to the OB unit and be broadcast significantly before the actual sound reaches us less than half a mile away. That’s the speed of light versus the speed of sound for you.

Watch the rest of Jools’ Hootenanny, and soon to bed, I expect.

A few collisions, but oh, well.

Haru gets up and I follow. Breakfast and to the supermarket. On my return I clear out my in tray and resolve to move it to the living room, where I’ve also begun a filing system, the general principle of which is “everything, A-Z”.

I go for a run, in the reverse direction from usual. There are a lot of people around. I remember this sort of time last year being quite quiet, but perhaps I’m just deluded. A few collisions, but oh, well. And my stamina has dropped in the last couple of days.

After lunch I walk up to town and get a portable hole punch for my Pocket Organiser, a small stapler, a radio-controlled wall clock and some more buff folders.

Getting home, everything is set up, and I file stuff, which is quite satisfying, as I’m now able to invent categories left, right and centre, as long as I put it in its right place in the plastic box.

The radio controlled clock doesn’t behave, however, resolutely convinced it’s four o’clock.

After dinner watch Primer, which is easily as odd as I’ve come to believe (part of the same downbeat-and-fairly-confusing tech-thriller genre as π. And then the last two thirds of The Good, The Bad and The Ugly.

This is not a brothel

Up at ten, breakfast at Perdoni’s again, back to the flat for mobile, wallet, that sort of thing, then walk up to town: I check out various things in Rymans, then Haru buys a new filofax at … um … Filofax, then we walk across to Regent Street.

We pass a building affixed with signs that say “This is not a brothel, please don’t keep ringing our doorbell”. Things have to get really bad if you have to get signs printed to tell people your house isn’t a brothel. Unless it is a brothel, of course, and you’re just trying to confuse the police.

Anyway, various other shopping, and I get a suit and cardigan from Salvation Army and, on the way back, various stationery from Ryman’s, again.

Back at the flat, drink tea and eat biscuits and admire our spoils.

In the evening I get noodles and wine from the Elephant shopping centre. We watch various comedy on television.

It kind of works, though.

Up at about 9:00, sitting and breakfast. Then I begin doing website stuff. This goes on for quite a while.

H and I have agreed to meet up in town, but I just keep on working, then go for a run (lots of tourists around, which isn’t surprising, but I should have thought of it before going that way). Back at the flat shower and dress and decide to carry on working rather than going out again, and call H to tell her.

Trying to get something happening in javascript, which has always struck me as faintly implausible, a bit like the magical incantations in Harry Potter. It kind of works, though.

H gets back. Eventually we have dinner, then watch The Belles of St Trinians, which is fairly wonderful, and The Strike and The Betrayal episodes from Season 9 of Seinfeld (that’s the Festivus episode and the backwards episode).

So not much in today.

He complains bitterly.

Post-Boxing Day Day, so not very complicated.

Get up, eat breakfast, then pack, trying not to disturb the cat, who’s been asleep on “our” bed for the last three days, with occasional meal breaks.

Then drive over to Bristol, visit Angharad’s house (very nice, and good to see that the Van Gogh action figure has a good home). Lunch, then a walk around Bristol, stopping at the Arnolfini for coffee, followed by Art. Then walk back to the house, and then drive back to Bath. Actually it’s more of a day out than that, but I’m too tired to say much about Bristol. They’ve improved it a lot in the last twenty years, though, I’ll say that.

Back in Bath, we drink tea and try to do the latest Guardian crossword, then Sara drives us to the station. Train arrives almost immediately, after we’ve turfed a couple of students out of our seats. God, I’m turning into VIctor Meldrew or something.

The train stops for a while in darkness somewhere between Swindon and Didcot. Because it’s still the holiday season, and getting us home on time would be spoiling us or something.

Arrive at Paddington, tube to Elephant & Castle. As I’m getting on to the lift the woman in front of me stops suddenly. Swerving around her I steer my suitcase over a man’s foot. He complains bitterly.

Haru stops off at the chip shop to get dinner, while I continue home.

Anyway, eat chips (and chocolate), watch tv, plan tomorrow, unpack.

endanger my chances of flying at all

We successfully get up and sit at 6:30. The body, which has been refusing to get up much recently, gave no difficulty at all. Which goes to show something, probably not terribly flattering to me.

Then breakfast, final packing and (after a flurry to print out the codes for the tickets) off to Paddington.

Collect the tickets from the machine, then get coffee. The coffees together cost as much as a pack of really nice coffee from Bullet, which is interesting. I’m often reminded that, instead of coming to places like this, we should uses thermoses more. Of course, they’ve got rid of all the places to sit down that aren’t operated by food concessions, but them’s the breaks. It might be good to take a thermos of coffee when I fly, were it not for the fact that possession of a thermos would endanger my chances of flying at all.

Is it just me, or has the world gone completely insane?

Train leaves, smoothly and on time. Not too crowded. Get into Bath and take a taxi to Sara’s house, then break in and make tea.

Sara and Angharad get back. Some general hanging out and sandwich eating, then a trip to Sainsbury’s (mad but not too mad) for final supplies (wine, crisps, baguettes, that sort of thing).

Back to the flat. More hanging out, then dinner, then hanging out. Watch (thanks to the BBC iPlayer – strange that they nick the Apple idiom for the name, when they’re deliberately and explicitly Apple-unfriendly) the 1950s and the 1960s in the series about children’s programmes – these are teh programmes that were on when I was the right age for them, if you see what I mean. Bill and Ben, Andy Pandy and The Woodentops were still on Watch With Mother, but then so was Joe, which was very right-on, if I remember correctly, and seems to have been written out of Children’s TV History, partly because I expect it wasn’t as much fun as Camberwick Green (though I was four or five, so I pretty much enjoyed everything), partly because admitting its existence subverts the talking heads’ insistence that it was all Terribly Middle Class, although one talking head (an ex-producer of Blue Peter) does say, rightly I think, that this is an accusation generally levelled by terribly middle-class people.

a yellow, radio controlled hovercraft

Manage to get up at 9:15, and to the supermarket at 9:45. There’s a river outside where a water main has burst. It looks like the water company won’t bother to do anything about it until after Christmas. Not sure that I could blame them.

The supermarket isn’t heaving yet, but is definitely busier than usual. Lots of confused people blocking the aisles making it difficult to get past. I’m supposed to be getting stuff to take to Sara’s, but realise that it would be easier to get it in Bath.

Back at the flat do… ironing shirts and… something or other… until I go out for a run at about 14:30.

There’s a boy playing with a yellow, radio controlled hovercraft in the flooded gutter.

It’s astonishingly foggy. It’s as foggy as Americans seem to think it is all the time, though that’s not the case. It’s as foggy as it is in the song.

Go along to Lambeth Bridge, then along to London Bridge, almost, and back from there.

I expect that the London Eye isn’t doing very good business today, although it might be a good opportunity for those who would be scared by actually being able to see something.

Back at the flat I shower and dress, then we go out again.

Up to Waterloo, tube to Tottenham Court Road, then Foyles, then a bus to the John Lewis Food Hall, where we buy Loganberry Jam and dulce de leche. Mmm!

Bus to Euston, where we have dinner at Chutneys, then waddle to Euston station and catch a bus home. Unwrap presents (H has given me shaving stuff and comedy DVDs, I gave her volume 1 of Simon Schama’s history of Britain, and Terry Jones on Medieval history).

Eat chocolates and watch Charlie Brooker’s Screenwipe and two episodes of a BBC4 history of kids’ programmes.

Up early tomorrow. The run seems to have reset something, internally.

I find their optimism inspiring

Get up, surprisingly, at about 9:00. We go to Perdoni’s for breakfast, and then I wander into town, with H until St James’ Park, when she goes to photograph ducks, pelicans and the growing number of squirrels who’ve given up on hibernation altogether.

As a walk I listen to Ditzy Scene by Cardiacs, several times.

I walk up to the record shop that was Virgin Megastore and before that Tower Records and is now something else. I can’t remember what, but I find their optimism inspiring.

Then to the Vintage Magazine shop, the liquor shop on Old Compton Street, various camera shops and home.

At home I wrap presents and have a shower.

I’d originally intended to go to a discussion list meet-up but don’t. Though later on I walk up to the recently revivified Fopp and buy (after some deliberation) copies of Amelie, Primer, Zatoichi and Waiting For Guffman. It’s good that Fopp is alive again, if only because they’ve put their logo into the doorway in mosaic, which is a nice touch

I get some chinese food on the way home. Getting home we eat the food, then watch Waiting For Guffman, then Amelie (with whisky mac accompaniment) and the end of The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou on BBC2.

I suspect the coming theme is Obstruction or possibly Double Booking. Or something like that.

knew and/or thought

Um. It’s late now, very late, and I’m not sure what I did. I did a lot of recovering from last night. I did some website work. Um.

Possibly go to see William D Drake tomorrow, if only because his promo shot appears (thanks to Photoshop) to have been shot on Milennium Bridge.

In the evening – just as I was getting into my stride on the website work – I went out to the MeFi Meetup, which was actually quite useful, as I got to shout a lot of things, that I was surprised I knew and/or thought. Anyway, generally nice. Belgian beer is difficult to keep under control, though. In Clerkenwell/Farringdon, which I always remember as an area that was turned off at night. But that was a long time ago.

Walk home, across Millennium Bridge, which is always a thrill. Walk under the Louise Bourgeois spider outside Tate Britain – strange, as it seems to have some kind of gravitational pull, making it more difficult to walk out from under. Or perhaps that’s just me.

Get home, then go out and buy snack foods. Then I eat them. Then it’s inexpressibly late.

they’re obviously trying not to distract me

8:06 – Get up. Sitting. Breakfast.

In the morning stretching, some Stuff. Haru goes out .

More stuff, lunch (leftover kedgeree – mm!), which I eat while watching a programme about Che Guevara and an episode of The Trap

The postwoman delivers a plastic protective casing for my Macbook.

More stuff, some practising. Some failed attempts to play noodling and solo on a Jeays track.

By this time Haru’s home.

I shower, dress and go off to the Jeays extravaganza, catching a 344 (which stops just outside).

This year is a lot more relaxed and less insane than last year and, as far as I can tell, nothing is broken. I do the now-traditional opening set. I spend some time warming my hands up, then have to wait in the cold area backstage, so when I go on my fingers are unresponsive. Poo.

I play Gravity, Care, 100 Horses, The Things You Get and Iodine. I’m slightly distracted by the people at the table immediately in front of me. Ironically because they’re obviously trying not to distract me. I worry that I’m keeping them from their food. Warm, attentive audience, anyway.

Aafter me is Geoff, then a short break, then the raffle. All sorts of songs come up this year. I should have played less (it’s the big band – six people, including two bassists). But anyway, it was fun. Got very, very big sometimes, too.

Will gives me a lift home, and I get some snacks from the corner shop, ending up going to bed at almost twenty to two!