Sunday, 21 November 2010

if i'm dreaming my life

I've been listening to David Bowie most of this weekend.  Bloody bloke, he's always 'round here complaining about something or other.  Personally, I think Mrs Bowie prefers him to keep out of the house - I don't think she likes him taking cocaine in front of their daughter now she's of an impressionable age. Anyway, after living with all that 1970s stuff, I thought I should catch up with a few more recent albums - nothing too recent, of course.

I really like "hours . . ." and read recently that "Heathen" is better. We're talking turn of the century here, so quite modern, really. Well, the jury's still out but there are some good songs on the latter, especially Everyone Says Hi, so I'll keep listening.

So, it's Sunday.  The day of rest.  An opportunity to catch up on a few chores.  You know, those five minute ones.  First up, get rid of the "beer fridge" (idly interested parties are referred to last week's blogs) - so a few minutes after I got up, I managed to do my back in a bit.  Great. Next up how about checking why the security light by the back door won't come on?  Probably the halogen bulb has blown.  A simple task.

Now, if you invent something that is designed to be kept outside in all weathers, would it be too ridiculous to ensure that the one screw that is likely to be needed (ie to change bulbs, etc) would be either weatherproof or covered in some way?  Okay, thought not.  A design fault, I guess. Or just too much to ask.

So, the rusted screw that now has a hole that no earthly screwdriver could possibly work on is totally impossible to remove.  So, the five minute job of changing a light bulb now becomes a hunt to find exactly the same model (on Sunday) and a need to turn all the electricity off in order to put said replacement on.  Now, I know that it is entirely possible to isolate the area of the house electrics to enable such emergency work, but if there's one thing I won't do, it's mess about with electrics when there's ANY chance of  being electrocuted. So, it all gets turned off. First, off I go to the local "Homebase" and, yes, unbelievably, an exact replacement is found.  Readers who know the Jack Dee sketch about DIY may begin to smile at this point - my facility for inventive foul language is well known around these parts.  The neighbours are kept amused by the colourful new verbs and adjectives I invent.  Perhaps that's why Mr Bowie was around again.

Actually, it all went swimmingly - replacement part found and replaced in a few minutes. No need for the family to move out for any length of time. But, a five minute job on a Sunday morning can so often become a full day's chore if you're not careful. Electrics changed and working, all tickedy-boo. Then I spent the rest of the afternoon putting up shelves in the kitchen.  I have in the past managed to keep things bought from Ikea hanging around for quite a while - a year is my personal best.  But, I was put into an awkward situation and forced to put up the giant shelves.  Obviously, it goes without saying that they were never going to fit in the space allocated.  So the electric saw was involved.  An electric saw and an electric drill - recipes for disaster both.  Oh well, sometimes the bullet has to be bitten.  All worked out okay.

The truth is I've plundered my eldest's cd collection whilst she's away in sunnier climes so I've found Mr B's "Heathen" cd - not bad at all.  I've also managed to purloin  Kate Bush's "Hounds of Love" and several Ryan Adams' albums I'm unfamiliar with.  All excellent stuff.

Mrs Dave and I went out for a meal last night to a local Brasserie.  I thought the cod loin was too good to miss despite my reservations about the "bed of roasted artichokes" - obviously Jerusalem Artichokes. Are you familiar with said beasts?  The impact upon one's stomach can be devastating, but I really didn't fancy anything else.  Well, along with the lighting problem, I had to deal with the after effects of the artichokes - I'm not adverse to a little, er, wind after a night out, but Jesus, these devils really are in a World of their own.  Standing up a ladder fighting with rusted screws that won't budge in the freezing cold with - literally - a tail wind isn't the best way to spend Sunday morning.

God knows what the neighbours thought.  Speaking of which, I made a rhubarb crumble for pudding tonight.  The rhubarb was given to us earlier in the year by a well-meaning neighbour.  That David Bowie, since he got his allotment hasn't stopped showing off his green fingers.


Mike C. said...

Nice post, Dave -- Bowie, DIY, farting, and innovative swearing up a ladder ... It's that full life we admire so much again.

I can never make up my mind about DB. I think I'd be a huge fan if it wasn't for that mannered voice. I have the same problem with Elvis Costello. Great songs, great persona, but please cut out the vocal mannerisms, boys...

Regretfully, I have concluded that no new music has been made since about 1990. It's all retreads from then on -- tribute acts, the lot of them. Can't wait for the next proper new thing, though I'll probably hate it.

I can raise you at least another year on neglected self-assembly and DIY projects. Indeed, our house has not really been redecorated since we moved in 23 years ago... I half did the mouldy bathroom ceiling last week, but have been resting since. Can't rush these things.


Dave Leeke said...

I must admit that I've always liked Bowie's earlier stuff from the original single of "Space Oddity" - which I still have! - up until "Diamond Dogs". The one and only time I saw him live was at the Rainbow doing "Ziggy Stardust" in 1972. I'm less inclined towards his later stuff but I do really like "hours . . . ". I'm not totally convinced by "Heathen".

Elvis is very much an acquired taste. it's one I never fully acquired. I like "Punch The Clock" and the single "Veronica" and the odd song here and there. But very mannered as you rightly point out.

I somehow manage to end up doing DIY jobs that my father would have taken in his stride but I seem to take forever to do them - and they never look right. Just thinking about them can bring on a fever.