Wednesday, April 09, 2008


Wednesday 9 April 2008

I haven't blogged for a while because I've been ill. Not physically ill enough that i couldn't drag myself to the computer but mentally ill. There have been some physical ailments too, which are manifestations of my current stress and anxiety levels.

The back pains have gone, while the throats problems are lingering like a bad smell. My doctor have given me some peppermint type tablets for my stomach problems and she's trying me on new anti-depressants; I think these are my fourth or fifth different ones.

I've been off work since last Tuesday when my combined ailments struck. Last week was spent lazing around feeling sorry for myself while eating for comfort. I've now been signed off for another fortnight and I'm determined to drag myself up and get myself motivated. I've made lists of things to do over the last three days and am managing to get through them, which gives me an enormous sense of achievement. However, the "black dog" is still lurking and that continues to be a struggle.

Now let me think what good news can I bring you to cheer you (and me) up. Well, since I last wrote the football boots I won in February have finally arrived (modelled by Wayne Rooney in the picture above). I'm still awaiting the other bits and pieces. We won a weekend in a Travelodge for four people via the Sunday Express Sportsword crossword. I also followed in the GLW's footsteps by winning a £25 runners-up prize in the Sunday Express' Skeleton crossword.

One of the major boosts to my confidence has been my acceptance as a presenter on (the award-winning) Kirkcaldy VRN, the hospital radio station which broadcasts to local hospitals and beyond. Normally it takes 3 months of training (a probationary period) before they would even think of putting you on air but because I've done it before I took to it fairly easily. We're using a system called Myriad 3, which is like a big Windows Media Player. My first show is this Sunday (5-7) and I'm looking forward to getting stuck in. I need some fine tuning but that comes with practice. More importantly, the people I've met have been really friendly and very helpful.

I've pretty much decided what I'm going to play and it'll be along the lines of my previous show on RWF, where I played mod, soul, girl groups, sunshine pop and all manner of delights from the late 50s through to the early 70s. I'll post my set list after the show (we're not allowed to do it before we broadcast) so you can see what I'm playing. I'll use my old nom-de-plume too, The Cat, and my show will be called "Where The Action Is".

I've also written another Recommend piece for The Scotsman and that should be in next Wednesday's edition, which will be celebrating their first anniversary of the feature.

I finally managed to get hold of Care's "Diamonds and Emeralds" CD, which brings together their singles and the "lost" album. I got it on eBay for £1.70 - my kind of record shopping. When I get a minute I'll post a couple of tracks. For those of you who don't know Care, they were Paul Simpson of The Wild Swans and ubiquitous scouse popster Ian Broudie of Lightning Seeds fame. Because it's a compilation of bits and pieces rather than a "proper" album, it can seem a bit patchy and "of it's time" but I like it a lot. "Flaming Sword" certainly stills stands up as a fine pop song. Hell, I remember that even my mother liked it and that's saying something.

One of my favourite bands, The Orchids, are playing in Glasgow tomorrow night but as it's only a short set (it's a charity gig with loads of bands doing small sets) I've decided to give it a miss. I have, however, managed to tickets for The Proclaimers gig at Dunfermline's Carnegie Hall in July. It's a charity gig to help send a local lad to Florida to get some dolphin therapy.

On my list of chores to do while I'm off is to sort Sky+, which is happening on Saturday. We got fed up missing programmes we wanted to catch so we've bitten the bullet. We're going to change our broadband over too but we'll have to wait until the start of June as we're still under contract to BT. I phoned BT yesterday to check on how I would go about changing and not surprisingly my concerns were cast aside as the woman not only tried to sell me BT Vision (their Sky+) but she managed, rather magically, to take £5 off our monthly Broadband bill if we signed up for another 12 months! This begs the question, why not sell me Broadband at £17.99 ALL the time, instead of when I'm threatening to leave. There was also some scaremongering about what Sky might or might not be able to deliver! I said I'd call back in June. The only good part is the call to BT was free, while the calls to Sky were on an 0844 number. I was on the phone to Sky for more than 15 minutes and the woman I spoke to even read out some lengthy Terms and Conditions at my expense, which I hardly had time to take in.

I've also put a couple of items up for auction on eBay. Mike Joyce, drummer with The Smiths, sat in for Marc Riley on his "Rocket Science" show on BBC6 Music and gave away some of his Smiths own stuff in a competition. These included a "Shakespeare's Sister" signed 12" white label, some original Rough Trade postcards and an English Tour programme from 1985. I've decided to sell them because, whilst they're nice items, I can't really enjoy them. I have the songs and someone else might appreciate them more. I have other Smiths items of worth but those mean too much to me. time.

1 comment:

JC said...

Just to say....

I've barely had time to keep my own blog going far less get round all the ones that I love reading, so this is my first drop-in for 3 or 4 weeks.

Real sorry to hear that you've been poorly, but hope that the Edwyn & I Am Kloot gigs were a bit of a tonic.

I happened of course to be just upstairs from you the other night at Billy Bragg. His show started and finished early (8.30-10.10) and I did try and sneak in downstairs in the hope of at least catching 'Over My Shoulder' (a brilliant piece of pop), but the man on the door very politely said no...

Re your BT experience - same thing happened to me when I called AOL to leave them after 5 years for o2 - said they would reduce my monthly rate by £10 if I signed up for three more years. Shows hom much we're ripped off.

And finally....good luck with the radio show. I've always fancied trying my hand at that, but could never get off my arse to talk to anyone about it.