Sunday, 17 March 2013

howl on

I don’t like my voice
And my clothes don’t fit
And my gun belt hangs
On my skinny hips
And all I want to do
Is to be like you 

I have decided to dip my toes into the murky waters of the Twittersphere (?!). I'm not actually even sure if that's a correct term hence the interrobang.  A friend at work has been badgering me for months to get involved. I'm not really sure whether it was worth getting involved or not but there are a few interesting characters to follow.

The biggest problem when starting out, of course, is the fact that nobody knows who you are so it's a very daunting thing to take that first - and in my case, very - tentative step. Ah well, each journey has to start with a first step, I guess. I'll throw caution and natural reticence to the wind and off we go.

One of the problems with it is how daft it looks with zero followers but in truth, I'm mostly interested in following a particular few Tweeters (is one who Tweets a Twat?). If it all gets too embarrassing or addictive I can always just stop using it and delete myself, I suppose. Ah well. Any comments from those who have had a go or even do Tweet will be welcome.

Anyway, it's St Patrick's Day and Mrs Dave is half Irish, so we're mostly drinking Guinness. Sláinthe!


Zouk Delors said...

I think it was Sean Locke (or was it Hugh Dennis?) who said, "Twitter is for people who won't shut up, even when they're on their own."

PS I thought I recognised the preface this time, then realized I had in mind:

"Can't help about the shape I'm in -
Can't sing, ain't pretty, and my legs are thin"
(Oh Well, Peter Green)

Dave Leeke said...

Yes, the jury's still out on the Twitter thing - I've avoided it so far but have decided to take a plunge. I still have no interest in Facebook, though, and I can't see me wanting to do it.

As I said, if it's a waste of time I'll give up.

As for the lyrics, they're from "Howl On" by Bap Kennedy. It's a great album with songs about the yearning for America by a Northern Irish lad growing up with the moon landings etc. We saw him at the Albert Hall a few years ago supporting Mark Knopfler (who happens to have produced and twanged on BP's new album "The Sailor's Revenge" which is also a nice album).

Andy Wright said...

Hi Dave. Been tweeting for a few months now (or at least I've had an account during that time). I think it's like a lot of things, OK in small doses but probably best not to get too addicted to fiddling with your 'phone or Ipad constantly. It IS pretty damn good for getting MP's to answer letters!

Dave Leeke said...

Hi Andy,

Yes, I have no intention of getting addicted as I have far too much to occupy my time already. I can see a lot of good use for it but have already noticed that I have no idea what many people are on about. Also, some of the stuff being moved about (retweeted) is far too time wasting to read.

We'll see.

Zouk Delors said...

PS "take a plunge"

THE plunge, surely?

PPS Piano Man has just come on R2 - cracking song!

Dave Leeke said...

No, I meant a plunge as I can always try again another time. Also, I could have several plunges as one can have multiple accounts - for different interests or multiple personalities.

Billy Joel?!

Zouk Delors said...

Of course! THE Plunge was in Basil's Road, innit? That's where I was introduced to Jim. He didn't respond (nutmeg).

Billy Joel - that's the one.

PS Playing now:: God Only Knows.

eeyorn said...

I've had a Twitter account for a couple of years now - I set it up thinking it might be useful when I joined in with the large protests in London. I've never actually used it in anger. Nevertheless I seem to have acquired all sorts of followers, none of whom I recognise.

I really ought to start using it, but I spend far too much time already on Facebook trying to set the world to rights.

Various writer friends on FB use it to promote their blogs, and it seems likely that you should be able to automatically generate a Tweet for each new blog entry you write.

Dave Leeke said...

I may be a little too young (Ha! First time I've been able to say that for a long time) for "The Plunge". I've never heard of it. Basil's Road ? Jim hasn't moved too far then!

Is Billy Joel what's known as a "Guilty Pleasure"? I'm really not a fan, I'm afraid.

I've sort of been warned not to use Twitter for self-promotion of blogs as people get fed up quite quickly. I'll just write a bit occasionally and see if anything happens.

Zouk Delors said...

I don't suffer guilt when I take my pleasures. Piano Man paints a poignant picture of unfulfilled lives being anaesthetized by drink:

"Yes they're sharing a drink they call loneliness
But it's better than drinking alone"

Full lyrics at

Dave Leeke said...

Fair point - it is a strange concept. As I said, I'm not a fan and I'm not knocking you for your pleasure. I tend to prefer this:


eeyorn said...

Ah yes, another fine RT song. Did you catch Richard's concert on BBC4 last night?

Dave Leeke said...

Oh yes, excellent. It was recorded the night before the tour. Steaming stuff!

Zouk Delors said...

Don't know the tune, but yes that also makes a good point - someone only an imaginary being could love!

"You can be a sailor, never left dry land".

I saw the RT concert too, thanks to Eeyorn. Some excellent music and lots of close-ups of the left-hand which I'm guessing you will be studying closely? There's something about his bends which makes him instantly identifiable, innit?

Dave Leeke said...

Hello, Zouk.

Yes, RT's mastery of the non-Blues bend is really something. He bases it all on bagpipe-type bends, being Scottish.

I guess this is one of the reasons he gets so many plaudits nowadays.

Glad you enjoyed the concert - I must watch the end as I managed to drift off in a state of bliss . . . fuelled by two pints of London Pride and a 50% share in a bottle of Sauvignon Blanc and a hard week at school.

Brendini said...

It ended with a rather ripping Tear-Stained Letter. But I don't think anything will cap the version we saw at Cambridge when Pete Zorn performed an astounding solo on lead mandolin.

Dave Leeke said...

Brendan! Welcome, it's all gone quiet up your end hasn't it? And I choose my words as carefully as ever.

Excellent, thanks, now I'll have to watch it all the way through again - as though I wouldn't!

Yes, Pete Zorn is a ridiculously talented musician. And to think that he started out in the Arizona Smoke Review with . . . Phil Beer and Steve Knightley of Show of Hands fame.

If you really mean it
It all comes round again.

Zouk Delors said...

"two pints of London Pride and a 50% share in a bottle of Sauvignon Blanc"

That doesn't sound OTT for a regular drinker. RT'S God probably hardly gave you a second glance! You hadn't wet yourself when you woke up, had you?

Dave Leeke said...

No, that wasn't me. In fact, I'm not sure who it was.

Zouk Delors said...

He bases it all on bagpipe-type bends,

Interesting to learn that, Dave. Have you tried to imitate that yourself?

Dave Leeke said...

Oh yes but with much less success! I like the term "imitate" here.

Well, when I say "all" I mean "a lot". He uses many Celtic inspired tricks in his armoury such as pipe trills and fiddle ornamentations. And different tunings, of course.

Zouk Delors said...


Actually, I wasn't quite comfortable with using this word (it started as "emulate"), but in the end couldn't be arsed to express myself as accurately as I'd have liked to.

What was it about the word that tickled you, exactly?

Dave Leeke said...

I guess because it reminded me of "impersonate". My dictionary (Collins 2009)suggests:

"1. to copy the manner or style of or take as a model: he remains rock's most imitated guitarist mimic or impersonate, esp. for amusement"

My pathetic attempts are obviously Number 2. That's also a double entendre.