Saturday, March 31, 2007

The Days Run Away Like Wild Horses Over The Hills


It's not often I indulge in personal time travel. In these days of media supplied, 'on tap nostalgia', it's all too easy to lose yourself in someone elses past. This is mine, or at least a piece of it.

Like most kids, I used to get farmed out to various 'Aunties and Uncles' when my folks wanted some time to themselves. As I got older, I got more obnoxious and less easy to leave behind, but in the picture above I must have been about three years old and as I remember it, quite happy to stay with my Aunt Margaret in Kings Park. I seem to remember Margaret and Bob Sweeting in little bits and pieces, I remember Margaret as a very open and friendly woman, Bob as being avuncular and there every so often. I also remember them having a daughter who was a bit younger than me. My mother tells me I was left at Margarets hairdressing salon,though I have trouble remembering this, all I remember was the Kings Park residence. What isn't disputed was the fact that I was spoilt rancid and was the centre of attention for various young and middle aged women. Jesus! What did I have then that I don't have now? (apart from the looks, charm and what looks like a custard cream in my mit.) ;)

That's Morag with me. She looked after me sometimes when Aunt Margaret had to go to work. Going by my placid demeanour and what memories I have of the time, I got on just fine with her. I remember her taking me swimming for the first time, along with some of her pals. Again, the memories are sketchy, but all I remember was being surrounded by people trying to get me to go under water, very much against my wishes. I think I might have been a little older and less charming by that point. It explains their half hearted attempts to drown me.......

The pictures only re-appeared again a few days ago during the spring clean currently afflicting my house. Theres one of me being held up at the camera by Morag and yet another has me in a shopping trolley. I might post that up if anyone requires an overload of cuteness.....

Alas, Bob died some time ago, but Margaret, as far as I know is still about. I'd have to check on that one.....

As for Morag......She was probably about fifteen in that picture so I'm assuming she's out there in the world somewhere.............Ducking kids in swimming pools....... :D

Ok, Let's go YouTubin'....


Joan Jett's old band The Runaways. Love this song.

Thursday, March 29, 2007

And Lo, They Came Bearing Feather Dusters............



......................and a manic gleam in their eyes that told me they would not be taking "Aw Naw!" for an answer. It's clear out time at iLL Man Towers and I'm taking cover. Lesson 1. Living with yr folks is neither big, nor clever.......


Anyway, here are some things I may or may not need some advice on.....


1 - Soup. I'm in the mood again for a bit of liquid sorcery. I whipped together a sort of Spring veg thingy at the weekend, but I'm looking for something new and unique. I know for a fact a few of you out there have some little soupy secrets to divulge. Go on, make my week.....


2 - I'm off to Gretna at the weekend. I wish I could tell you all I was eloping, but alas, hell has a better chance of getting a little light frost than I have of forming a meaningful relationship with a member of the opposite sex. Football I'm afraid. I'm off to see Thistle get pumped by.......I mean play Gretna. It's been a bit of a week for the club all told. It looks like we're staring into the financial abyss again. At least last time we had a refurbished main stand, state of the art floodlights, undersoil heating and a fucking huge stand to show for the debt we were in. This time all we have is a pile of rubble at one end of the ground and a botched property deal. Oh, and a team that would have a hard time against the local amateurs.......My club needs me. More to the point, I need my club.....


3 - The more curious and observant among you will have noticed that the iLL Man blog empire is expanding. Feel free to drop in and say hello. On the subject of comments, I have noticed that it takes a certain kind of post to generate feedback from people. Now, I'm not going to look back through my posts and find out what the formula is. It would be 'posting-by-rote' and since this blog is an exercise in self indulgence, I feel it would become something of a chore to come up with things that I feel people would respond to. I realised long ago that I'm far too random to get much of a gang in tow.


4 - Following on from the above point. Can I have shout outs from all my lurkers. If you've never commented, then do so now and forever haud yer piece....


5- I'm off to bed, I'm fucked.......


Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Quick One...

One measly, tiny, stupid exclamation mark in the labels box and blogger decides to launch what I've written into the void. You Fuckers! All smug and happy cos you think yr new system kicks arse? Think again you dick faced slugs. One typo in the wrong place, that's all it was..... I'll be back with something coherent soon. Cheers!

Friday, March 23, 2007

"Sir! Theres Been A Murder At Firhill..............."


"...........Ach, theres murder at Firhill every second saturday" Chief Inspector Jim Taggart.


So there I am, making dinner and trying to bend my neck round the fridge to catch the scintillating action going down in................Taggart. Ok, I felt I ought to make the effort I suppose, see if it would surprise me, see if there were any interesting plot twists etc.

Nah, fuck that, this is an STV production we're talking about. Taggart used to be a bit of a "must see" show back in the day you know. Mark McManus was the eponymous detective who took dourness and monosyllabic truculence to new levels (the man didn't act, he just 'was'). The story lines were grisly and hard boiled and were usually spread over two or three parts to allow character development, red herrings, plot twists etc....

The new incarnation is, quite frankly, a load of old shite! The acting was never hot, sure, but it's godawful now. Blyth Duff in particular has all the emotional range of a lobotomised supply teacher, though Alex Norton does a good job of stopping the whole thing from imploding under the weight of it's own awfulness. The plot lines, such as they are, seem to be so flimsy and cliche ridden that they always fail to hold the attention and more often than not invoke gasps of disbelief. The 'Silence Of The Lambs' scene near the end of the particular episode I was watching had to be seen to be believed. Norton and Duff go to interview some loon in prison. Enter a shaven headed psychokillerbloke who starts with the riddles and Lecter-isms as soon as he opens his mouth. He even throws in a bit of Ted Bundy("I get marriage proposals" etc) for good measure. Had he ordered a nice Chianti and a side order of fava beans before making odd sucking noises with his teeth at the female officer, I wouldn't have been the slightest bit surprised.
If Taggart is to get even close to it's glory days anytime soon, it'll need to go back to the 2-3 episode routine and re-think the cast list. An hour is fine for a 'Police Procedural' like CSI or a semi-soap opera format like The Bill or Hill Street Blues. A 'whodunit', unless written by a genius needs to give itself a bit of room to Manoeuvre. Needless to say, I had the culprit figured with about half an hour to go. Given that there were only about half a dozen characters in all, I'm actually disappointed I didn't get it sooner. As I said, I was making the tea at the time.........

Anyway, it's Friday, it's twenty to eleven and I'm getting drunk, which means it's YouTube time..................This weeks offering features The Dead Kennedy's and singer Jello Biafra's deeply bizarre interpretative mimes. What's with the green hands Jello?




..........Anyway, fuck that, just enjoy the muzak.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

New Blog


Derelict

I'll have some stuff up on it tomorrow night.

Cheers!

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Friday, March 16, 2007

Hoot! Bray! Snort!


I don't watch much TV to be honest, but there are two 'television events' I have come to dread, primarily because they seem to take on a life of their own and infest my normally serene and untroubled existance. Actually, it used to be three until I gave up worrying and learned to love Eurovision......

Children In Need is bad enough, but the worst of all is the painfully unfunny showbiz shindig that is Comic Relief. Basically, if you find the Vicar of Dibley a rip-roaring hoot, then you'll just love it this nine hour dirge of mirthless pratting about and wackiness.
For the rest of us (what? all three of you? Jeez...........) it'll be an evening spent doing something less boring instead. Like this. Or maybe this...

To be honest, I have great admiration for anyone who can sit through more than an hour Lenny Henry without grinding their teeth down to bloody stumps.
To make things worse, due entirely to Comic Relief, I've had to suffer the horrific musical tastes of other people today at work and I'm feeling distinctly uncharitable. Yeah, great idea that, bring in yr CD collection then charge people for the pleasure of inflicting their idea of aural Nirvana on innocent bystanders. Complete torture it was.........

Needless to say, I now wish somene would form a lynch mob and hunt down Paulo Nuttini.

What they do with him after they find him, well that is none of my concern.........

It's not all bad though. Thanks to Billy, I've discovered 'Observer Woman Makes Me Spit'. At present probably the only blog dedicated to the complete and utter loathing of a monthly womens supplement in a sunday broadsheet. Quite brilliant it is too. They also seem not to suffer fools like Grazia too gladly either.

Also, I'd like to say a big "Well Done!" to Troubled Diva who managed to pull together a book of amusing and witty blog entries in a mere seven days (proceeds to Comic Relief). I did consider contributing, but since I don't really do 'funny', I thought better of it and left it to those who are more adept at making people giggle. Worth a million miserable CR Mr Bean 'Specials' I say...

Ok, Friday Youtube time with.......



They're still going apparently.....

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Ed Is Dead

Can't believe the poor sap who sits opposite me at work. he seems to have been sucked into being nominated as department rep, yet I've never seen someone so happy to put themselves forward for punnishment. The company I work for is in the middle of a 'merger' as it's being euphemistically referred to and his duties will consist of going to some meetings in which our new overlords go through the motions of liasing with the workforce and listening to our concerns. He reckons it'll look good on his cv, and he may be correct. Thing is, I have doubts about just how much attention companies pay to cv's when they hire people. I think theres an experiment in there......Submit a cv to various companies in which you claim in the 'personal info' section to be sixteen feet tall, possess x-ray vision, speak all known languages and possess the ability to wipe out humanity on a whim. Yes, you may be referred to the psychiatric panel by 95% of the employers you contact, but I'm also sure that there would be someone who would be more than happy to entertain you.

"Well, maybe he gives a good interview......."



On an entirely unrelated note, I was thinking the other day, "who would be my 'holy trinity' of rock'n'roll?" It's a dumb thing to think about, yet it kept me ruminating for most of the walk home yesterday. For me, Brian Wilson would be one element, Iggy Pop another........

Can anyone suggest the final element of this rather perverse 'Godhead'?
Does anyone have their own trio of pop culture genius? I'd be interested to know just how many others out there occupy their time with such useless thoughts.

Cheers!

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Strange The Difference A Day Makes.........

So I strode out of the house tonight, The Iggy Pop mix of Raw Power lacerating my synapses through my cheap and nasty headphones and making me feel about twelve feet tall. You know, that "I'm Fucking Alive" feeling that you just don't get often enough in a lifetime.... It's funny, because I was on my way to Firhill to watch Partick Thistle, much against Doctors orders it has to be said. He said the Jags were "in for a pumping" as he took my blood pressure and advised I take up less stressful hobbies like lion taming or drug running.

Anyway, God only knows what the players had roaring through their heads pre-kickoff, but they arrived on the pitch as hyper, switched on and alert as I was and proceeded to play in a way I haven't seen this season. 2-0, going on five or six... Whatever it was, I hope the manager has a plentiful supply.

I've been a bit down for the past week it has to be said. Nothing big really, just niggly little things. Seeing my mother come back from a weekend break in Newcastle a day early due to yet another urine infection was a real fucker. I mean, is it too fucking much to ask that she gets away for a few days without coming down with this shit? That's two holidays out of three ruined by the same condition. Needless to say, she's absolutely armed to the teeth with anti-biotics for the next sojourn...... Wish her luck.

Talking of walking wounded, I'd also like to give a belated shout out to the Fat Sparrow, who's having a fucker of a time with illness too. Go and wish her well here. She hasn't updated since late Feb, so I'm hoping she's Ok and just laying low. Haste ye back missus.

Ok, that's it.

Go on, Beat it!

Nothing To Report


Sorry folks......


Have to be honest, I might not post anything of note until the end of the week, real life is kind of encroaching a bit and there are things I should attend to.


I'll have something up when the notion strikes me and not before.


Cheers!


Friday, March 09, 2007

Hank, Put Out The Light When Yr Finished


Thought for the day. Does anyone have John Reid's number so I can text him and tell him to fuck off and get a job as a Rocksteady events steward? Or I could be blunt about it and tell the cunt to leave the country.......

Yes, I know it's old news, it's been at least 24 hours since that fart in the wind broke......

The iLL Man spits on topical relevance.


Say hello to these chaps, runners up in the British Eurovision heats (Northern Finals) 1979.




Not sure what became of them.....

Ok, not a lot else to be said, so I'll leave you in the hands of 'Mr Chinaski', thirteen years dead yesterday....


One For The Shoeshine Man

The balance is preserved by the snails climbing the
Santa Monica cliffs;
the luck is in walking down Western Avenue
and having the girls in a massage
parlor holler at you, "Hello Sweetie!"
the miracle is having 5 women in love
with you at the age of 55,
and the goodness is that you are only able
to love one of them.
the gift is having a daughter more gentle
than you are, whose laughter is finer
than yours.
the peace comes from driving a
blue 1967 Volks through the streets like a
teenager, radio tuned to The Host Who Loves You
Most, feeling the sun, feeling the solid hum
of the rebuilt motor
as you needle through traffic.
the grace is being able to like rock music,
symphony music, jazz . . .
anything that contains the original energy of
joy.

and the probability that returns
is the deep blue low
yourself flat upon yourself
within the guillotine walls
angry at the sound of the phone
or anybody's footsteps passing;
but the other probability--
the lilting high that always follows--
makes the girl at the checkstand in the
supermarket look like
Marilyn
like Jackie before they got her Harvard lover
like the girl in high school that we
all followed home.

there is that which helps you believe
in something else besides death:
somebody in a car approaching
on a street too narrow,
and he or she pulls aside to let you
by, or the old fighter Beau Jack
shining shoes
after blowing the entire bankroll
on parties
on women
on parasites,
humming, breathing on the leather,
working the rag
looking up and saying:
"what the hell, I had it for
while. that beats the
other."

I am bitter sometimes
but the taste has often been
sweet. it's only that I've
feared to say it. it's like
when your woman says,
"tell me you love me," and
you can't.

if you see me grinning from
my blue Volks
running a yellow light
driving straight into the sun
I will be locked in the
arms of a
crazy life
thinking of trapeze artists
of midgets with big cigars
of a Russian winter in the early 40's
of Chopin with his bag of Polish soil
of an old waitress bringing me an extra
cup of coffee and laughing
as she does so.

the best of you
I like more than you think.
the others don't count
except that they have fingers and heads
and some of them eyes
and most of them legs
and all of them
good and bad dreams
and way to go.

justice is everywhere and it's working
and the machine guns and frogs
and the hedges will tell you
so.


Charles Bukowski

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

'Hair By Maurice'



All it took was one glance in a mirror that happened to be sitting in the window of an antiques shop I was passing . I think I got an attack of self loathing, decided my hair was a disgusting mess and doubled back to the Turkish barbers I'd just passed. Ten minutes later and I'm somewhat lighter (and colder) on top and distinctly happier.
Response at work?

"Yay, iLL Man's had a Britney", followed by the inevitable question....

"So, does your head not get cold?"

Oddly enough, yes it does. What is the point of this question? What do they think I'm going to say?

"No, it's ok, I keep a three bar fire under my hat to keep it warm......."

That said, I know someone at work who's balding from the back and spends thirty quid getting his hair 'done'. Why? If anyone were ever in need of a No1 cut, it's him.......



Anyway, I was moved to a new seat the other day and I'm frankly unimpressed. I reckon I'm 'under surveillance' by the supervisor because he thinks I'm not doing enough work. Fair enough, I'm not........God it's the most awful shitey work and now I can't even send sneaky emails and look at the net on the sly. The guy across from me loves it of course. He wants to be a para-legal or something, the poor fucker, can't get enough of the old title deeds and whatnot. As if being an obsessive Celtic fan wasn't enough.....Anyway, I was on the verge of getting out a few weeks ago, but you know how these things go, you need a few runs at it before you take off.......


Monday, March 05, 2007

Mostly Unpleasant

Four Nil! Four Bloody Nil!!

Weekends. When they're good you wish they'd never end. When they're bad, drinking yourself into a coma seems to be the only option.

So, there I am nodding out at work this morning with sheer fatigue and two days drinking like a man with two heads. It's that sort of glaze eyed zombie mode you go into when yr body seems to be on the edge of shutdown and the only way to fend it off is go to the kitchen and make yourself more tar-thick sweet black coffee. I'm getting too old to do this kids, I need a new hobby.

Anyway, three cheers for my brother. He bought me an AA battery charger (and some batteries obviously) The first thing this will do is free up the best part of about fifty quid a month spent on the bloody Duracell batteries that my camera guzzles at a most alarming rate. I have also been told that it will impact less upon the environment, which is nice. I know absolutely nothing about environmental concerns and usually act accordingly, but hell, it's nice to know that I've reduced my 'carbon footprint' as it were. Thing is, since I don't own a car and since I stopped burning tyres and dead animals in my back garden, I feel I'm maybe entitled to the odd wee bit of environmental vandalism. For what it's worth, I wantonly waste electricity, steadfastly ignore recycling and try my very best to buy the product with the most extravagant packaging above all others. It might not be much, but I like to think I'm doing my bit.......

Anyway, Monday Youtube clip for y'all.....



Saturday, March 03, 2007

Guitar Shop Man


Evenin'

You'll have to forgive me, I've been trawling the depths of Councillor Terry 'Gumby' Kelly's blog and haven't been able to withdraw myself to attend to my own blogging duties. I think I'm becoming obsessed.....

Ok, now I'm here......

New guitar tonight. It was cheap, it was from Victor Morris, and the long hair that flogging it to me commented on how great it's pickups were.......

Lord almighty, it was sixty quid, did he think I was a moron? Don't answer that, of course he did. From the moment I walked in he had me down as the sort of gonk who wouldn't know a Fender from a Gibson. he was wrong of course, I found out the difference just last week, so there..................

Joking aside, I got into the very worst guitar shop situation possible. Instead of going for the whole "yeah yeah, whatever, I know it's a hunk of shit, I just want something that'll stay in tune" gambit, I allowed him to tune the fecker up for me, plug it in and let me play it in the shop.

Rule One Of Buying A Cheap Guitar: Just buy it, don't get into a situation where trainee Joe Satriani's can wank away for thirty seconds, then pass the ruddy thing to you with that "Ok, let's see what you can do" look on their face. There is a perfectly good reason why the frustrated bastards work for minimum wage selling leccy banjos. They lack any imagination and believe that their blues rock band, probably called something like 'Foxglove' are only one killer song away from being signed.
Anyway, the bugger looked at me in disbelief when I told him I'd done a few acoustic gigs and wanted to get back to playing electric. The reason for this was the fact that when he passed the guitar to me, I didn't pull out the requisite rock licks or at the very least play Smoke On The Water. Nope, I just fumbled a few chords, figured the thing worked ok and decided to buy it. I just don't believe he thought I had ever picked up a guitar before.

It's my fault, it's how I come across to people. I can bullshit my way through things I'm almost alien to, yet I can't convince some dork in a guitar shop that I do actually know what way up to hold a guitar.

I should of course have taken the approach I applied the last time I bought a guitar -

Assistant: Aye, it a nice guitar, well made, good sou....

Me: I'm just after something cheap to make a bit of noise on

Assistant: Do you want to try it?

Me: No


I got sucked in this time. Be forewarned, guitar shop blokes are failures, they will try anything to make you feel small and stupid.

The New Toy. Lovely........

Thursday, March 01, 2007

More Tales Of Death And Destruction

My office sits by the motorway. No big deal you might think, lots of offices sit next to motorways. In Glasgow it's a wee bit different, as my office also happens to be about five minutes walk from the city centre. Council bawbags today and council bawbags of yesteryear have one thing in common. They're all bawbags. I'm sure if it didn't already exist, some prick at Glasgow City Council would come up with the ripper idea of chucking the M8 through the middle of the city and sticking about half a dozen junctions within a one mile stretch of it. How there aren't more accidents I'll never know....

Anyway, we all got something to look at today. A roaring sound signaled to us that either a 747 was making an emergency landing on the Kingston Bridge or some unlucky fucker was in the process of having his or her car written off. We all trundled over to the window in time to see an articulated lorry and what I think used to be a brown Vauxhall estate of some kind parked up against the central armco barrier. The truck driver was out in an instant phoning the emergency services, maybe his boss too, maybe to let him know the delivery would be just a wee bit late. The poor sod in the car looked to be in shock, as well he might after being rearended by a huge freight truck. Failing that he'd been injured and couldn't have left the car even if he'd wanted to....... It was like some alternate universe Smokey & The Bandit scene and I was just waiting to see if Boss Hog and Enus were going to roll up in a comically wrecked Plymouth police car to dispense justice, when the supervisor appeared over our collective shoulders and ordered us back to our desks. The cunt!

What else............Oh My! Spring is here! Well, for a day at least. Is it me or did it feel positively humid for the time of year this lunchtime? Maybe not, but it got me wondering when, or even if I'm going to ditch my trusty scarf for another year. The days I've forgotten to take it with me, I've felt more than just a little naked without it. Naked? Did I just say that? Ok, I feel a bit exposed shall we say, like I'm missing something vital, even when it's not particularly cold. If anyone I know sees me still wearing the damn thing in May, then please feel free to hide it, I'll learn to live without it......
Bon Nuit mes Enfants!