The number in the audience

Well, this time next week, I’ll probably be telling you how my presentation went in Leeds, and how I felt doing something like that again, after a number of years. Its fair to say that over the years, on a number of occasions, I’ve performed in front of a lot more than about 120 people, so it should be a piece of cake. Yes, famous last words, and all that!

There is also the fact that back then, I was presented with a script, which I had to learn, anything between a few lines, and considerably more lines, depending on the role! Of course, this time around, I have to come up with my own script. In truth, I’m not planning a verbatim, must be followed word for word script for myself, going to go with a mix of pertinent notes, and improvisation, so that I can at least react to the audience, as I have no idea what I’m letting myself in for, in that sense.

Yes, there is another issue with a strict script, my vision! If I did that, I would have to wear my reading glasses, and then I wouldnt be able to see the reaction of much of my audience, because beyond about 10 feet (3 metres?), everything is blurred wearing them. And yes, if I wear my long range glasses, to be able to interact with them, I wouldnt be able to read the script clearly, so…

Be an interesting test of an actresses skills, for sure!

Apparently my ‘publicity manager’ is planning for me to review the performance at least in the office, in our communications hour, which will be a smaller audience, but a special one, being my actual workmates. As we are split in 2 groups for this (different times, to keep people on phones at all times), I presume that will be a double performance.

However, in terms of numbers, compared to what someone I know will be experiencing in just over a fortnight, my numbers are tiny! I have no idea when Julia Kneale last appeared on a stage, but I doubt it was in front of nearly 3,500 people! Hey, I think my biggest audience is about 600 – 800! Unless you’re an OMD fan, the name may not mean a lot to you, but if you are, especially from the early days, you probably do. Yes, one famous song, more on that shortly!

I know, its one of those silly things in these modern days, that someone you’ve never actually met, but regard as a friend? And I dont just mean the ‘I sometimes look at her postings kind’ either, on both parts. Yes, she’s making an appearance at the OMD concert in York (she lives nearby) on 18th, where she thinks she’s just making a brief appearance, but knowing Andy, as much as I do, I wouldnt be surprised if it isnt more. Sadly I cant get there. Tickets went on sale when I was in the US in September, and by the time I got back, all the seated tickets were gone, and with my back, I couldnt stand for the full length of the show now. I mean, I tried that a few years ago in Leeds, before my back went, and my knees were so painful afterwards that walking was a challenge at the end!

I suspect that when you get down to it, appearing in front of that size of audience is no different to 600, but wouldnt have a clue? Hopefully she’ll tell me afterwards! But yes, Andy, if you read this, and want to offer to sneak me in, on the 18th, I’d be so grateful. Yes, it would be amazing to meet the band, but meeting Julia, after all this time, would be so special too. Oh fine, meeting Martin Cooper would be something special for me too!

Right, the video. Yes, Julia’s song, as in Julia Kneale’s song. This is a more recent performance by OMD, though of course this song dates back to the days of the band before then, the Id.

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Praying for a miracle, and reaching for the stars

Regardless of what happens tonight, and it might be all over then, though I hope not, by the next time I get to post here, the baseball season will finally be over. Hopefully, it creeps over into November, because if it doesnt, it means the Dodgers have lost the World Series, and I will be a slightly less happy bunny. I mean, they could still lose it tomorrow, in November, but then at least the dream will have lasted one more day.

In all honesty, against any other team, I’d probably be hoping for a Houston win, because of all the problems they had with the hurricane, and everything there, it would be nice for them to have something to bring cheer. But, yes, its the Dodgers, so fine, I care, lol! No, I have no idea what I’d do if the Dodgers were playing the Royals, except that I probably wouldnt really care who won!

Technically, the Dodgers have a strong hand, given the last 2 games are at home. But the pressure of having to win both games, or else, must still play a part? Game 5 was an absolutely crazy game, 13-12, in what was supposed to be a game between 2 strong pitchers. But yes, whatever they’ve done to the balls this year, its certainly changed things in favor of the hitters, indeed, gone too far in my humble opinion. Yes, I like runs being scored, as much as others, but all tactics seem to have gone out of the game this year, beyond the hitters just trying to smash every ball out of the park! And the balls flying for miles, to help them!

Anyway, not a lot I can do, from here, I guess. I know what some think, but no, I’m not a witch, and cant fly at supersonic speed on a broomstick to get there, and change the history of the game lol! Even if I had a flying saucer spaceship (oh please!), still the same! But yes, in my sleep, I’ll be hoping for 2 Dodgers wins in the next 2 nights, and a World Series title.

My next game, all things permitting, will be next May, on the West Coast. But no, not Dodgers Stadium, but a long way north of there, in Seattle. Yes, another stadium to tick off my list of visited for a game, though I have done a tour of that stadium. But yes, definitely health permitting, but fingers crossed.

The video, well the title is a line from the lyrics. Cannot find an actual live performance of this one, sorry!

Walking on the ‘milky’ way

Oh fine, if that doesnt give you a clue to the video, nothing will! A tale of getting older, and cutting back, so call yourself warned.

When I was young, or indeed while still into my 20’s, I used to walk miles on my days off, quite literally. Yes, in those ancient (facetiousness factor) days, it was nothing for me to just walk out on a Sunday morning, walk 4-5 miles or more, have a bite of lunch, or at least a drink, when the weather was fair, and then walk back again. In truth, if I wanted to go far, on a Sunday, back then, in Somerset, or Dorset at least, and didnt drive, you had to walk, there was no Sunday bus service at all! So I did.

Its fair to say that over the years, my walking has got a bit slower (though some at work might not believe that), and maybe a couple of miles each way was enough, but I kept walking, when I could.

But yes, now, since my back went wrong, I’m now finding that my limit, in 1 go, is down to about a mile, or just under! How do I know this, you ask? Well, according to Google Maps, the distance I walk in Bradford, from the Bus Station, to work, is approximately 0.8 miles. And yes, I’m beginning to ‘feel it’ at present when I near my destination. So in truth, not much more, which is why I’m using a mile as a guide, and I might have problems nowadays. I know, I was about 25 then, I’m 60 next year, with osteoporosis, but its still a blow to the ego.

Will it get better, will it get worse, who knows? I suspect that its more likely to be the latter, than the former, so I’ll settle for stability at least. In truth, any other year, I could book my holiday for May already. I just about have the funds, or will have after pay day next week, I know who I want to fly with, I know where I want to stay, but…its a me issue!

The thing about staying in hotels, is that they expect you to go out for the day, each day. Hopefully, fine, it wont be an issue. Equally, if you can tell me, that in an 8 day stay, there wont be at least 1 day where the body is suffering a bit, I’d love you. It might be true, but given that 2 working days in a row is about my limit at present (Holiday time would not be as hard on me, physically, to be fair), assuming I can get out for several (or more) hours each day of my stay, hmm? There is, to be fair, an apartment option, but that would mean getting provisions on arrival (using a UK credit card, in the US, not always easy online), and I suspect I might not be up to that, after a long flight. So the hotel would be better, now.

Oh, and then there is my own determination, and budget. In theory, the hotel offers a shuttle to and from the airport at all times, so I could use that to get the train into town from Seatac, but it wouldnt get me back, anyway. In fact, I could do a flat 0.7 mile walk to a station, which would be fine at present, but then, and each day…?

So yes, I’ll leave it a while to make my booking, just to see how far I might be able to walk by then. I will make the call by February, and see how I am by then, is the plan. Its not just that of course, it is the length of flying time (its direct coming back, but via LA getting there, adding several hours) as well, so we will see.

In truth, I probably ought to have a Plan C, involving either the East Coast of US (shorter flight times), or somewhere in Europe, but I’m trying to avoid working on thoughts like that at present.

But yes, getting old sucks, lol!

The video, a live version of the blog title!

Trying to be practical

In truth, I was already beginning to suspect that given the state of my body at present (yes, still open to all offers of a cybernetically enhanced body, ideally in chrome), trying to do a 5 day week at work wasnt doing me any good. First sign was last Monday, when basically the body hadnt recovered from 4 working days in a row, by Monday morning, even with painkillers and stuff, and so it proved, I didnt get through the day, or more correctly my back didnt! I somehow managed to make it far enough through the day to get to halfway, so it didnt count as a sick day, but even that was hard work! Of course that gave me a day and a bit to recover, so I got through Wednesday fine, and Thursday OK, but then came Friday, and…

Yes, the body was sore, and tender, but I got into work, and managed to stay there, at least. But yes, it was a struggle. So anyway, trying to be practical as to my capabilities, I decided to do justice to work, and to myself, something had to give. So yes, I’ve asked if I can cut back to 4 days a week for now, hopefully only until the bone density scans are done, the results are known, and the medication kicks in. But given the former is still nearly 4 weeks away, and it will be about 3 weeks after that before the results are known, and I can be given something to hopefully cure the issue, its going to be a while before that happens, and the body just cant cope with that at the moment.

Yes, I can afford it for a short period of time (I’m guessing about 10-12 weeks), and could even afford it full time, if I cut back on my holiday trips to US! Yes, I know, ouch, but one 10 day trip would be cheaper than 2 single week trips, because of one less set of flights. Yes, a 14 night stay would still be cheaper, but there are very few places where I believe I could have enough to keep me amused for a fortnight!

Seattle could, San Francisco could, and I suspect Chicago, or Washington probably could. But some of the smaller cities I want to go back to, nope! 7 days would be fine, 10 maybe, but after that…? But yes, I’m hoping I can get back to a normal regime in a few months, but at the same time, I’m not getting younger, and my back isnt my only issue, so…?

My plan is to work Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday, which gives me the other 3 days off. Yes, I know, 2 days in a row, but I can seemingly cope with that, but no more. But yes, its me, I’d rather do a work routine I can manage, for less money, than let my firm down, by pretending I can do a 5 day week. Just waiting for confirmation of approval now.

So there it is, unless someone wants to provide me with a nice, new strengthened body…? 😉

Video time, what my body needs in terms of support. Martin Cooper might be handy, but given he has back issues himself…So no, thinking more of that back brace that needs to be ordered lol!

Tesla guy, testing out theories

Its fair to say that over the years, Elon Musk has come up with some fascinating concepts. Some of which have gone into full development (Tesla Cars), some of which (Space X) exist in concept, though nothing dramatic has happened yet, but probably will. Finally, there are ideas like Hyperloop which have been talked up considerably, though at present there seems little evidence as to whether it will ever happen! So yes, mixed record, would be fair to say.

The latest one, which is one I personally would love to see happen, and indeed be part of, is Neuralink, which is seen as a brain computer interface system. I suspect the humans are meant to be in charge, but if it worked the other way as well, on me, well I wouldnt complain!

http://www.wired.co.uk/article/elon-musk-neuralink

Or if you have more time, more of the issues are discussed in parts 3, and 4 here

http://waitbutwhy.com/2017/04/neuralink.html

Yes, it seems at present that the biggest issue is the fact that to literally interface with the human mind would take rather a large number of electrodes literally connected to the brain, which is, err, a bit complex at present. Surgery is an obvious issue, but however small you can develop those electrodes, there is still a space limit with the human head for all that extra hardware! And thats all before finding a brain surgeon capable of, and willing to do the surgery involved in this interface with the human mind. Lets face it, a few people might not mind a couple of electrodes wired to their mind, but about a thousand? Oh fine, a few like me would enjoy it, but most people… No!

Put it this way, human/computer interface will happen, though I find it doubtful that it will be Elon Musk doing it in around 5 years time. Give it 20-25 years, and I wouldnt be surprised though, possibly even less. But fine, if Elon Musk wants to give it a try, on a willing human volunteer, anytime soon, then he needs to give me a call, please!

Right, video time. One of his big successes, mentioned in a song, though I suspect the homage is to a different Tesla, for sure! Live version, from LA, where I’ll be in under 3 weeks. Sadly, OMD wont be there then!

Talking loud and clear?

I’ll be quite honest, I owe the inspiration for this blog to a memory that was suggested on my Facebook timeline, combined with something that will be happening at work next month, and not my holiday!

As is the way with so many things in life, you just get used to the system you use at work, then someone decides it needs to be changed, and you have to start all over again. In truth, what I can see of it, its not that different to the one we’re currently using, but even so, any kind of change, at my age…fine, I’ll survive! 😛

The snag will be, that we actually did the training for the new system early in March, and we dont start using it until early in May! Yes, I’m not as young as I used to be, and I’m blonde! So actually remembering that, when the time comes around to change over to the new system, hmm? I know we will have assistance on the day, and some paperwork we can refer to, but fine, me, and getting used to change? Lets face it, I cant stand the modern smart phones, so…I know, old dinosaur, and all that, lol!

Snag for me, is I’ll just start getting used to it, then not be there for 2 weeks, and forget it all! Yes, I will be using it for a whole week, then disappearing for just over 2 weeks, given bank holidays, day off, and the like when I get back. Yes, I planned for that, just wasnt planning on having to use a new phone system around that period!

Oh right, you’re probably wondering what made me think of my training for the new system, arent you? I suppose you expect me to let you see it, right? Oh fine, might see this being used as a way to remember how to use the new system as a bit dramatic, but fine, I’d love it far too much.

No, I have no idea why I used that picture on Facebook 2 years ago, but the less said on that, probably the better!

The video, some live OMD, which in truth is a better version than the original video. One of their few songs that really works better with an orchestra, in truth.

If you leave, California?

I know there has been talk in the past about the West Coast of the US breaking away, and forming a nation calling itself Pacifica, taking a decent chunk of Nevada with them as well. As far as I can tell, its never got beyond theory, but now, after just one week of Trump in charge, it seems California is getting ready to vote on seceding from the rest of the US. Given that the new Republic of California would rank as one of the top 10 economies in the world, its probably not an impossible ambition. The fact that Washington and Oregon are discussing getting together, forming a nation called Cascadia shows just how unpopular Trump is. I also wonder that if these 2 areas do it, how long before New England might consider following suit, hmm?

Tagged Calexit, which I am sure might be inspired by the Brexit tag, the campaign is on. They do need to get a huge number of signatures by July, but if they do, that could lead to a vote in 2018 on the issue, and if enough people support that, independence, maybe? Ironically, if it did, it would happen just about the time that Trump would be standing for re-election, which could be fun?

Now whether this, or Cascadia, or even Pacifica actually come into existence because of this, no idea? It would take a few events to happen, but if Trump carries on making crazed decisions, like the Muslim ban, well then, all bets might be off!

I was wondering how this might affect the ‘Big 4’ pro sports teams in California, if it happened, but given that 3 of them have teams in Canada, probably not at all. No, no NFL teams in Canada, probably because they have their own league, though talk of the Bills moving to Toronto was mooted for a few years, but seemingly gone away now.

For me, it would be nice if the Republic of California, if it happens, had a looser view on immigration laws. As in, there is one humble British actress who would love to be able to live, and work over there, just saying… 😉 Oh fine, I plan to visit an agency I have contacts with in LA, in May, and see if they think it might be worth me trying to get a working visa/green card, or not. Fingers crossed, all positive, and I might yet get to live, and work in California, while not living in the US! Hmm?

OK, video time. Clue in the title, as so often. No, I decided to resist all the California songs, as I’m sure I’ve used them all before. Might have used this, but not a live version. Warning for the innocent, the F word is mentioned near the start of the video.