I write the songs, oopsie, I write the stories

No, dont worry, there is no need for a Barry Manilow warning alert, its not his version. Not that I’m sure this is much better, but he was a heart throb when I was a teen, so…

This might end up sounding like one of those Oscar winning speeches, but I promise not to go on for 25 minutes, nor burst into tears at any point.

There are 2 ironies today, the first one being that I had my first posting at the EMCSA today in a very long time. Not a total drought of stories in that time, just that 2 of the recent ones havent qualified for the place, and apart from one, ‘Georgy Girl’, I havent had much time, or inclination otherwise. Not for lack of tlc from my beloved editor, or indeed one or two gentle kicks up the backside as well, its mainly been a time thing.

But with a holiday, a very friendly spirit muse from the 20’s, and help from one or two special people, its happened today. I suspect this story has got at least 2 more chapters to go, though they make take a while before its all finished. Chapter 2 is in hand, but the third chapter might hit time problems yet, but I hope not. Oh, and a certain 90’s pop video may have played a part as well.

The funny thing is, this inspiration whose first name was Mary (though not the name she was best known by) hasnt just inspired my writing, but my friend Heather as well. And strangely enough, the start of her story appeared today as well! And coincidentally, a certain editor named James has worked on them both!

As an editor as well as a friend, James is wonderful for me. My grammar skills leave a lot to be desired, and as he pointed out to me twice on this piece, he spots my silly blonde errors too! He is patient, knows when to push me, and generally when its best to leave me alone. He is also wonderful in real life btw. Heather I’m yet to meet, though hopefully one day…her avatars I’ve always loved, not only for her favourite actress in them, but for the style as well. She’s also been an amazing help with lots of other things, including finding me a snippet of ‘Mary’ talking, of which there arent many.

So alright, you all know ‘Mary’ is Louise Brooks, but anyway… 😛

I’ve never actually met Andy McCluskey either, though I did go to an OMD concert ‘many, many’ years ago, but thats as close at it ever got. Ironically he’s the only original OMD member on Pandoras Box, though the reformed band (all the originals) have certainly performed it since. That video took my eye, as well as loving the song, and yes, I wanted to know more about the actress concerned.

Unsurprisingly, I never met Mary Louise Brooks, for a very obvious reason, I only discovered her a few years after her death. But if things go to plan (and this is 16 months from now!) I’m hoping that in April 2013, on my trip to the US that I can come and pay my respects at least in Rochester NY, at your graveside. Now, wouldnt that be a great place for me, Heather, and her spirit to all meet up?

I couldnt post Pandoras Box again, much though I’d love to. So I ask you to instead put up with David Cassidy singing, yes, you guessed it…

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a_6cwUso8CA

Oh, and today, in a charity shop in Ilkley (Yorkshire), I found a silver sequin type top that is so 20-ish, its unreal! Sat in it now, feeling like a proper flapper girl! Sadly its dry clean only, so wearing will be limited, but its wonderful to own at least. And cheaper than it was originally, thats for sure!

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‘Cause I’m a blonde

Silliness blog alert…

Well alright, only because its coloured that way, but anyway… Snag is, in terms of volume, and in terms of hair at the front, its as thin as the naturalness of me being a blonde. Well alright, not quite that thin, but as a couple know, it wouldnt qualify as Dolly Parton type volume lol. Alright, nowadays some of her’s is a wig, but… what, surely you knew? 😉 I’m not as big as Dolly is naturally somewhere else, but thats beside the point!

Yes, you can cheat. If I wanted a pair like Dolly, I could use enhancers. I could also have cosmetic surgery, but thats expensive, and rarely looks natural anyway! I might actually use enhancers sometimes, but not that often in public. You can also cheat on the hair. If you can get, and afford a really good wig (and Dolly clearly can), then you can go down that route. But the more modern thing (and even at my age I can try to be modern) is to give hair extensions a try.

No, I’m not going for the Rapunzel look, with hair halfway down my back and all that, though I suspect it might end up longer than now all the same. Hopefully it will give me more volume on top (needed, especially for social events at this time of year), and hopefully I can get more of a natural looking, and longer fringe than at present. How well it all works out, ask me after Tuesday! I’d love for it all to work out so well that I can go for a long bobbed look, but that might be a step too far I suspect?

The other option would have been to book in at a hair salon in Chrystal Heights, but the snag is, the only place I can find that is in some wonderful fiction lol! Mind, if I did, I’d probably have the Dolly Parton type boobs thrown in as part of the deal, wanted or not! As some know, I have a wonderful lady who looks after my nails (with colour), my face (with facials), and my back and knees (poor things) with plenty of massages. She is also quite a wonder with make up, which will be handy on Thursday too. No, I dont do it myself, well hardly ever, mainly because I have a slight tremor in my hands, so doing anything delicate is a bit too much of a tricky operation for me. So when an important event comes round, she gets the call. As is my current thing, I mentioned a 20’s look (cant think why…) but how practical it is, will have to wait and see, have left the details in her very capable hands. A blonde version of LB would be wonderful, but making me look that good would either need a miracle, or a Chrystal Heights type transformation lol.

Oh, the video, you really want one? 😉 I think the title of this gives it away really. So, here is Julie Brown, from Earth Girls Are Easy, this is your moment.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0rNfZxgkH7k

 

Its all coming back to me now!

Writing stories that is!

This weekend I’ve finally started on the first multi chapter story that I have written in absolutely ages! Its nice to know I can still do it with the time, and the inspiration, I always assumed it was still there, but you never really know until you try, I guess? It will get to the Archive in good time, but given Simon’s rules. it might have to wait until Chapter 2 is completed, and edited before I can do that. For members, Chapter 1 is posted at the Garden for now, though only the rough pre edit version.

Those from the Garden already know who has inspired it, anyone else probably doesnt have to be a genius to work out that a certain 20’s actress might have played her part as well. She hasnt been playing such a major part in my dreams of late, but maybe thats because she knows she has done enough already. I do swear I’m starting to get a few of the facial inflections shown in the Pandora’s Box video, so maybe her spirit is now within me, which is why I dont see her in my dreams anymore!

In case anyone reads it, and wonders where I got the names from, try looking at some film parts played by Ms Brooks. No, I didnt discover them all for myself, a wonderful woman called ‘Heather’ helped greatly with that. Even more so with her help, I know what Louise sounded like, a real nice thing for me to be able to do.

Before my dear editor (James, to those who dont know) gets too excited, the answer is no, I dont yet plan to get back to anything like full time writing again, mainly because of the lack of time. But I have to admit it, this has been fun, and its sparked my enjoyment of writing again, which has to be a good thing…for me at least! This will be 2, if not 3 chapters that will be lovely to write, and not a robot, Stephanie, or technically a Louise in sight lol!

The song, again the Garden folk have seen the video, but for those who havent…

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wkxyIHoFVSQ

The irony of the group name will appeal to some, but thats Jim Steinman’s fault, not mine lol!

Holding on for…

One of those tenuous blog entries related to the throwaway last line of my previous one.

As most on here know, most of my musical preferences are pretty much pure pop, and quite often of the sweeter side of that. Alright, you need to ignore Kraftwerk in that lol, but anyway…

There was always one song producer that totally confounded that theory, I just adored the big rock production numbers that he churned out, mainly care of Meatloaf and Bonnie Tyler, name of Jim Steinman. Mind, the videos created for his songs, especially the Meatloaf ones probably helped! Another producer who didnt believe in the 3 minute pop song lol! Rock anthems, rock ballads, call them what you liked, but they rarely came in small packages, thank goodness.

Irony of irony, given matters, it seems that Steinman’s own personal pop project was a group called Pandora’s Box! No idea where I’ve heard that name before lol! Not that I really know anything about them, judging by the Wikipedia comments, they never really made it this side of the pond, but I doubt they made a record about Louise Brooks!

Yes, the song is the obvious one, from the hint in the last blog, and the title of this one too. I suspect I will slip in some Meatloaf at some point as well. I might have to see if I can find any Pandora’s Box sometime on You Tube as well. My idea of a hero, well it might be more a Rotwang type scientist than what Bonnie Tyler wants, but each to their own I guess? So, whichever type of hero (or heroine) you hold out for, I hope you enjoy

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7f_HsjpSVaI

The first female robot?

Yes, we are talking Maria in Metropolis, some are probably only surprised its taken me this long to get here! In a sense, so am I lol!

One thing is for certain, she wasnt the first to be described as a robot, Capek certainly mentions them several years beforehand in R.U.R (Czech play), though I suspect as they were factory workers, they were all male back then. Plus, thats used more as a derogatory term for workers, not strictly anyone turned into a robot per se.

But then again, when you think about it, Maria as such wasnt really turned into a robot either! To be strictly correct, Rotwang has created a metal robot (though the body was actually some form of wood), and its more a case of he mentally downloads Maria’s mind into the robot body, and it somehow transforms into a mirror image of her. Of course, as any film buff knows, it doesnt all go to plan from there as the robot ends up only causing more chaos amongst the lowly workers of Metropolis. But all the same, its generally regarded as a transformation, even though later in the film the real Maria appears intact, both mentally and physically, and helps to save the day, even confronting her robot self at one point.

So it could be said, that mentally Maria was the first robot, though it was more strictly replicant in all honesty than a true robot. But all the same, whether you call it robotisation, transformation, or just mental download, its an amazing scene, especially with the rings of electricity, given there was no CGI or anything back in those days! I suspect it wasnt real electricity, but I wouldnt put anything past Fritz Lang in all honesty.

As a concept, of transformation, mental download or whatever, I find it all very hot, and would love to replicate it sometime from within that magical box, tube or whatever that Maria is placed into. Its all the more incredible when you think this film was made about 85 years ago!

I’ve managed to find what is literally just the transformation scene on You Tube, which will cut down on the viewing time for some. To paraphrase a Bonnie Tyler song, ‘I’m holding out for a Rotwang’ lol! Would love to fond his ancestor! 😉

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IcReykfvqi4&feature=related

A change of direction

Given that its Thanksgiving Day tomorrow in the US, which relates back to the arrival of the first immigrants to the US from here, its time to throw in a piece of hypothetical thought.

Just over a century ago,  my ancestors left Ireland, and headed to England to look for a better life. What made them choose England over North America, Australia, or other places, well who knows? Maybe they didnt want to follow the larger crowd to North America, maybe my great grandfathers had job offers already, or otherwise, I can only surmise.

But its an interesting thought, how different might I, and my life had been if they had gone west, instead of east, as so many Irish people did. Of course, if one set had headed in one direction, and the other had remained on course, I might not even have been born! If that had happened I might not have been holidaying in Boston this year, but living there!

Would I be different as an American, or Canadian woman? I dont know, I’m sure attitudes have differed over the years, musical tastes certainly have, thats for sure. Top British groups have never made it over there, top US groups have never really made it over here, so I suspect my musical influences would be very different. Politically, work wise and other things, would I have been different going through their system. For example, over here, especially when I was a teen, going to university was a pretty exclusive thing. In the US, pretty much everyone gets to go to college, or so it seems to me from over here. Would I have bettered myself with a college education, who can tell?  I might even have been a cheerleader, but I doubt it!

One thing is for certain, I might be used to colder winters than we get here lol! Though I guess that would ultimately depend on where my ancestors eventually moved to in North America, big difference between Northern Alaska and Southern Florida!

I’ve never as yet been in the US for Thanksgiving, so have no real idea what the day is like over there. Well beyond the fact you fill yourself with food, and then settle down to watch football. Of course thats a different form of football to what you’d get over here. In fact, over here the soccer doesnt get played until Boxing Day! Maybe one day I will, hopefully if I’m still up to it when I retire, I might be able to plan travel that way a bit better. Assuming of course anyone will invite me to Thanksgiving dinner lol!

My best wishes to all my American friends for tomorrow, hope you all have a marvellous day, but do remember your brave ancestors who travelled across the ocean in the past, especially those first few, now unknown pilgrims who first celebrated this day nearly 400 years ago.

Music video, well who knows, I might have ended up as a

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BADZW9tZ1uc

Though not looking like MM I suspect!

The Gardener I know the best.

I do wonder if she’s been pleased, or disappointed up till now by the fact I havent done a focus on her, but lets put that right now.

Now, I say she’s the one I know the best, but thats pretty much because we shared a wonderful week together (of sorts) very recently in, and around Boston. And got on so well together that we plan to repeat the experience next year. Yes Kate, or should I say kbug, your turn has come!

Its funny, until about this time last year I’d never really considered actually meeting anyone from the Forums, but then the idea of a trip to Boston became possible budget wise, due to considerable help from James in finding somewhere at a ‘price I could budget for’ to stay at in the area. Soon after, the idea of having a ‘companion’ for at least part of the week was suggested to me, and I decided to go for it. Has to be said, it was the best thing I’ve ever done on holiday. had a great time.

Kate is a redhead of Irish extraction, I’m currently a blonde of Irish extraction, so all in all…and yes, the craic was super, as you might suspect. And despite any self deprecation on her part, she neither looks, or is insane in any way, as James will also bear witness. Kate and I also have one other thing in common, a great ‘love’ of US Airways lol! Thankfully I mainly get to fly with American Airlines nowadays, cant think why!

Lets pick one wonderful day, you will see why when you get to the video. Normally I go to the baseball on my own, sit quietly in one of the cheaper (not the cheapest though) seats, enjoy the atmosphere, and then go back to the hotel. This time I went in luxury to Fenway Park with an avid baseball fan, and oh my, wasnt it fun! Pictures taken before the game, lunch in luxury, and then take our seats. It has to be said that some of the drops by Boston fielders, well, I think Kate or I would have fancied our chances of holding them. And yes, this was part of the by now infamous Red Sox September collapse, so you can guess the result.

But I had been told that Fenway Park was an amazing place to visit, and thats so true. And the fact that its set downtown just makes it even more so. Thanks for taking me there for such a great day, made me feel a right lady I must say.

Ah, the mention of the word Fenway! Some might think the park is the most famous thing with that name, but I know a dog that would disagree. Sadly I never got to meet the famous doggie this time around, but hopefully thats another thing I can put right next year. ‘His’ emails are entertaining, the spelling is interesting, but all things considered, not bad for a doggie lol! Mind, there are rumours that ‘Mommie’ helps him write them, but I’m sure she would deny that? 😉

I’m so glad I went ahead and met Kate, she is a lovely person on the Garden, even nicer in real life. And yes, I’m really looking forward to meeting her again next autumn, and watching the Bills beat the Pats in New England. Well, alright, maybe not win, but… 😉

The video, well its Fenway (or is that Fenway’s) Park, though not for Baseball, couldnt find a musical piece for that. Its the NHL  Classic game last year, a group singing ‘I’m shipping up to Boston’, something I plan to do again next year, and really looking forward to it.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ghYrYXvy2wY&feature=fvst

I’m so saying nothing about the name of the group performing!