Flying home for Thanksgiving

Its amazing to think back now to the fact that it actually took the first pilgrims to the US in 1620, about 2 months to get there from England. By the time they sailed, it was autumn, heading into winter, so sailing against the winds was very hard work.

A hundred years or so ago, it would still have taken about a week, or slightly more, to reach the US from England by ship. Ships had far better speed to travel by then, due to the wonders of modern (for their time) engines. Planes were primitive beasts back then, far from capable of Atlantic crossings at that point. Of course, now, its possible to reach the East Coast, around Cape Cod at least, in about 6 hours! Jet planes are a wonderful thing, and the fares now, allowing for inflation, are probably cheaper than some of those ships of the past.

Of course, 50 years from now, flying home for Thanksgiving might be involving interplanetary flights, as well as Transatlantic ones. Yes, ancestors of those first pilgrims to Mars, and maybe by then, beyond, might be heading home to families too. Moon as well, I suspect, but I wont be around to find out, for sure. Though given gravity differentials, will that be possible?

Of course I’m assuming that tradition will stand then, but I cant imagine it changing, somehow. After nearly 400 years…!

This year, I havent flown anywhere for Thanksgiving. Have now done it once, and will possibly do it again, post retirement, but I suspect not before then. Well, unless…?

A friend, Stacie, sent me this, as a suggestion of a suitable Christmas present for me. Yes, I have to agree!

No, as far as I know, Amazon dont actually sell them, shame. Would be beyond my budget if they did, anyway! Of course, to fly such a craft, you need a suitable outfit to wear. For me, this seems pretty good! 😀

Of course, if you know of a better one that I can wear, going cheap…? 😉 Now, that would be a fun role to play, though I do wonder if you get out of that outfit again after putting it on! Or is it an alien life forever after that? Not that I would mind, but…?

Video time. This works for the present, and the future at least. Those early pilgrims probably wish they could have done a 6 hour flight (or whatever), rather than 2 months at sea!


Being put on display

For those of you fortunate enough to know about both blogs, you’ll note that the inspiration for both came from postings I found on Facebook this morning. For those who dont, you’ll have to just take my word lol… Whereas the other was a posting that a lovely friend put up for me this morning, this one I found by sheer chance, just going through postings on my page.

I know, technically every time an actress performs, she’s putting herself on display to others. In my case, to several hundred at most, but famous people, and my dear friend, Julia, to a few thousand, or even more. I’m not saying I’ve never done one of those carnival parade things, but I dont specifically remember doing one. If I have, and I might have done (would be around, or over 30 years ago if I did, so forgive my memory), then I suspect I dressed up in an outfit, and had fun, but nothing like that, as the feature item.

For those in the Bradford area, on the weekend of 2nd/3rd December, they are having a Festive Streets entertainment weekend, clearly aimed at attracting trade to the area for Christmas, I hope it goes well. I will be there on the 2nd, for work, obviously, but somehow, I’m pretty sure I wont end up as the lucky lady in that dress, in the snow globe. Yes, would love to, if I was offered the chance. But yes, they will want someone young, and pretty, so…

But yes, I wonder what it would be like, to be in her position, the center of all attention for tens of thousands of people? Maybe one day I will find out, but by now, I have my doubts. But, fingers crossed…?

The video tonight. Well, when it comes to a lady on display, in a less than natural setting, this really comes to mind. Supposedly done on one take, incredible if it was!

You Ought To Be In Pictures?

Well, now I’m a professional actress, just maybe? Except strictly, I didnt get paid for acting this week, I got paid for public speaking. Yes, my presentation last week has actually earned me, what I believe to be, my first fee for public performance in my life. No, dont quote me for definite for that, my career as such as it is goes back about 50 years, so I might have forgotten something, but I dont remember ever being paid. Yes, been on TV a few times, performed in school plays, and amateur dramatics numerous times, but never got paid for anything. Until now… Well fine, £25 isnt a fee that Meryl Streep and the like would get excited about, but hey, its a start! Strictly, its not payment for the presentation, its a reward for doing it, but it comes down to the same thing.

Question is, if I buy an outfit that I might use for a part, does it count as a tax deductible expense? Yes, I’m joking, believe me! I doubt very much that a 15 minute presentation on diversity issues, is going to see Hollywood, Broadway, or even small theater groups rushing for my services! Even more so, given that my activity levels are a bit limited at present! I suspect its either going to be used for winter boots, or a dress styled from 20’s or 30’s, assuming I can find something of a full length, which might be hard with flapper dresses!

Strictly, at least in a past life, I have been in movies, though only in small roles, and chorus line stuff that wouldnt turn her into a star. And yes, she failed to pass on the dancing skills, unfortunately.

Today though, is the birthday of someone who did deserve to be in pictures, and indeed she was, Nancy Carroll. Mind, the latter part of her career was mainly in TV, and theater, so might be hope for me yet! No, I’m not as talented as her either, sadly, nor did she have my back issues, to limit her mobility.

But one thing, at least now I’ve been paid to perform lol. Public speaking tour, anyone?

OK, the video. Huge clue in blog title, a real oldie here, from 83 years ago!

The story behind a song

Tonight’s blog is bought to you care of a workmate yesterday, who knowing my love of most things American, asked me if there was actually a midnight train to Georgia, as in the song? So fine, I took a look this morning, knowing there were all sorts of long distance trains on Amtrak, that there might be one, somewhere. In fact, no there isnt, and nowadays at least (and reputedly wasnt in the 70’s) there is no train direct from Los Angeles to Georgia anyway. The closest at the moment that I could find, was the overnight Silver Meteor train which calls at Rocky Mount, North Carolina at 11.50 pm, and gets to Savannah, Georgia at 6.34 in the morning. Mind, it might have left a few nights at midnight, but anyway…lol!

And no, the train from Los Angeles to New Orleans, from where you could, in theory, connect to a train to Atlanta, leaves at 9.00 pm on the nights that it runs anyway! So clearly, no is the answer.

The thing is, when you dig into these matters on the internet, you find all sorts of intriguing information. As in, in this case, that wasnt the original name of the song! It was, as I will prove shortly, originally called ‘Midnight Plane to Houston’, and yes, they have existed in the past! Not sure if there is a current one, with all the night flying regulations we have now, but back then…there was!

Seemingly, what happened was that some artists came along, who wanted to tweak the title to something different, and a new title was born! The fact that said train never existed, mere technicality lol! So yes, the next time you hear Gladys Knight, or Cissy Houston singing that song, just remember it wasnt always about a train to Georgia, but a plane to a whole different state.

Fine, you want proof? Here you go, the Country version, as sung by the songs writer, Jim Weatherley. Sorry, unsurprisingly, no live video!

Is it Christmas already?

I know that in theory at least, the US tends to let Thanksgiving just about get out of the way before the Christmas celebrations begin, but unfortunately, over here in the UK, we dont have that buffer to get in the way. In truth, I think we were barely into November before the city centers over here were getting ‘dressed up’ for Christmas. Dont get me wrong, I dont object to all that fuss, but I do think the beginning of November is a bit early for all that. Me, I think beginning of December would be fine, but anyway…? Views?

I suspect a lot of it comes down to that matter called modern life. In truth, with so many people nowadays shopping online (guilty as charged, easier for me, even more so now) for their needs, I suppose the shops think the sooner they get people to think about spending ridiculous amounts on presents for Christmas, the better? Surely they are only going to buy presents once, regardless, but anyway…? I know, US literally goes crazy with Black Friday, one day after Thanksgiving, but at least thats nearly the end of November!

Thankfully, nowadays, I dont have many presents to buy, equally I dont get many, but that is all fine by me. If someone wants to get me a complete robot suit to wear, then fine, but in truth, my primary need is probably more some kind of very soft, lumbar supporting back that I could use on my chair. Oh, if it comes with soft seat too, all the better, but my back is sadly my main ailment now. I did have a link to something like that, but have lost it, but I’m sure its traceable on internet, but no one reading this will be looking anyway! Might get one myself, but it will have to wait until after November payday, as this is the month my reduced hours have caught up with me, so having to be careful, to avoid breaking into savings. I know, I could, but I’m crazy that way!

Yes, I’m sure I will look forward to, and enjoy the whole Christmas build up in time, but I still think the beginning of November is far too early, thats all!

Right, video time. What the shopping people seem to want it to be, for at least 2 months of the year! Yes, live version, never found that before!

Playing the role of a robot

I dont think I ever got to play a robot on stage, not that I remember doing so, anyway. Lets face it, school plays are unlikely to include such an element, and most amateur dramatic stuff is based around doing things that dont need too many scene changes, or dramatic changes in costume, ideally no changes at all!

Doesnt mean I’ve never played as one, because I have, both in coherent thought, and under the power of hypnosis, but lets face it, I wouldnt resist the command to think I was a robot, lets face it. Sadly, I’ve never got to do dress up for any of these roles, its just been me, as a robot, but anyway…Yes, I’d love the chance to wear something like the Metropolis, or Gort look. Robbie the Robot look might be a lot of fun to do, but a bit more complex to set up, I guess?

The other thing I have done a few times, is do interviews about the whole robot thing of mine, though ironically I think they have all been for North American companies, but none involved a trip to the US. Ah well… It seems to be a subject that fascinates some TV people, though I dont know of any sci-fi series yet where they have actually turned humans into robots, I must say. Doll House is probably as close as they’ve got in a real life series, I would guess? Not that I would mind playing a constructed robot (as in Star Wars, or Buck Rogers) given the chance. I would add the robot in The Orville, but I suspect that was that modern ‘delight’, CGI?

This week, I saw another company asking for people who have played, or role played as robots at Fembot Central. It does seem to be focused on the sex side of things, more than anything else, but its not of concern to me, because they only want contact from people in LA, or NYC, and I’m not! In truth, probably wouldnt have worked for me, because they seem to want the sex element more than anything, and sex just doesnt interest me at all. But would I have offered my services, if in those cities, well, maybe?

Yes, my dream modelling job would be as a robot, at one of those convention things somewhere. Unlikely to happen, especially now, but you never know, I guess. Its fair to say at least, I could roleplay a robot easily, and willingly. Well, if they want to make it compulsory lol, I wouldnt say no, but…

So tonights video involves one of the better pieces of robot roleplay within a music video.

Oh what a farce (good kind)

For many years, from primary school times, until the turn of this century (yes, I’m not quite that old, not in this life, anyway), I took numerous turns as an actress. No, I cant remember all the weird, and possibly wonderful parts I played in those 30 years or so, and there are probably some I wouldnt want to remember anyway! I suspect the first was probably an angel, or a shepherd in a school nativity play, and the last was something more challenging acting wise, though I cant remember the exact details now! Was somewhere in West Dorset, and thats as good as the memory is nowadays.

I know that in the intervening period I’ve been to more than a few shows, plays, movies, and musicals, but always as a member of the audience. Technically I have performed in that period (at least 1 is on You Tube, though you’d be hard pressed to find it without the link, and not sure if I still have it, but suspect I have?), but in terms of dramatics, thats pretty much it.

And no, I never made the bigger stages of London, Broadway, and the like. I might have appeared on a Broadway, but that would have been as part of the name of the road that a theater, or a hall was on, not the New York one!

But certainly for a number of years now, if I’ve been to a performance, its been a professional affair, and the tickets have probably sold for ‘medium to silly’ amounts of money. So last night, for the first time in many years, I went back to my roots, Amateur Dramatics. I cant remember how I first got involved in them, but it would have related to appearances in grammar (secondary) school plays, I’m sure. Someone mentioned me back then, and from there, I joined up with a few groups, and I would like to think performed decently. Well, I guess if I didnt, I wouldnt have been invited to do more!

Then somewhere along the line, around the time in London, I just stopped trying to perform. No idea why, it just happened. And given the state of my physical health now, that probably is it, unless something amazing happens.

‘Love’s A Luxury’ was a farce presented by the Cookridge Amateur Dramatics Society last night, and I was amongst the audience. Principally because one of my work colleagues was taking part in the production. 3 of us from work went together, had a good meal, then on for the show.

I’m sure I must have done farce in my time, because nearly every ‘Am Dram’ group tries at least one, but I dont remember any, if I did. This was great fun, plenty of mistaken identity, and confusion over events, and an entertaining ending to boot. Yes, loved it, though I suppose there were more than a few moments when it felt odd being in the audience at such an event, but I soon got over them.

Did I miss the nervous tension of performing such a show? Probably!
Would I do it again myself, given the chance? Possibly, though given that now I would need a part that required little, or no mobility, outside of a wheelchair at present, I doubt it will happen. Even if my body gets no worse, I cant see it improving dramatically, and thats what I would need at present.
No health issues, or a suitable role? Yes, I probably would, and love it, but I suspect its not to be, anyway.

But who knows, in the world of acting…?

I was trying to think of a suitable video, and this was about as close as I could get. Anyone who has seen, or acted in a farce knows that its quite a circus at times, so…