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March 2016

It’s Wednesday… Let’s Dance

Disco Is Dead! Long Live Disco!

This week Disco has been playing loud and there’s this track by Alicia Myers… well, you see, it’s changed me! I can’t stop listening to disco.

I watched a documentary on the rise of Disco. I had no idea how entrenched it is in gay culture, including the backlash against it. The slogan ‘Disco Sucks’ seems fair enough, until you realise the people holding banners were also hating the fact that gay men and women were being heard.

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DISCO SUCKS

Disco’s outlived the banners and hate, it’s a testament to the power of the human spirit! There’s a lot of exclamation points in this post and I blame disco, I’m too excitable!

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It’s Wednesday… Let’s Dance

Another week has passed, I now have a job! Although, I’m still looking for something more fun. In the meantime, when I’m not working myself into an early grave for my corporate overlords, I’m lifting my spirits with this track from Ethiopiques Volume 1 and good God… it’s funky.

 

It’s Wednesday… Let’s Dance

Can you imagine a track more viscerally thrilling than this piece of art from Brian Eno.

I’ve been trying to work with this in the background, at some point I can’t help but stop what I’m doing, turn the volume as loud as possible and let the track play out. It’s not great for productivity but is anything fun ever good for productivity?

No, I haven’t been able to dance to this just yet, but mentally I’m hopping all over the place.

 

Eating Vegetarian in Cambodia

I won’t talk about how I felt about Cambodia, it’s a blog post for another day, I’m here to talk about the food, and the food is good.

I was on a pretty tight budget so I often found I was limited to just fried rice or noodles. When I was willing to spend a little more money I found there was plenty of delicious vegetarian food all across Cambodia. Some parts of Cambodia are very tourist friendly, there are downsides to this but a positive for veggies is there’s often a ‘vegetarian’ section in menus or even a little green V next to meat free meals.

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Imma let you finish, but this was the most delicious curry of all time!

There are definitely more cheap options than just noodles and rice, baguettes are everywhere! If you’re a cheese lover you’ll be hooked on the sheer amount of fresh baguettes you can buy.

You might even rekindle your childhood as the sound of the ice cream man ringing his distinctive bell as he pulls up outside your hostel selling ice cream baguettes!

I had one of the best curries of my life in a vegetarian restaurant  in Phnom Penh, I’ve since tried, and failed, to repeat it at home. Phnom Penh isn’t for everyone, I actually loved the city life. I  enjoyed all the cities I visited in Asia, there was so much life everywhere, it sent my imagination running wild.

The next stop was Sihanoukville and by this point I was fed up of noodles and rice so I did end up giving in to the temptation of chips and to be honest I ate a lot of junk during my time there, once you’ve visited I think you’ll understand how easy it is to do so.

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Reasonably healthy by Sihanoukville standards

By this point in my trip I was pretty confident I could order vegetarian food, even though I still hadn’t learnt the phrase for meat free. I’d attempted ‘Aht Saight’ which is supposed to mean meat free but it got me nowhere, tofu was pretty well understood and it normally gives a good idea you’re going for something without meat.

If you had any more luck with phrases, let me know in the comments.

 

 

 

My life as a Radio Phone In Freak.

It’s a Friday night and unlike most teenage lads my age, I’m not sipping white lightening, hassling wildlife down the park. Instead, I’m sat next to my phone, waiting for a call back from a radio station. Yes, I am one of those people.

By this point I’m a seasoned pro! I’ve even made some ‘fans’ (I use the term very liberally). At the time I wasn’t fully aware of how unusual my hobby was, to be honest, I didn’t see anything wrong with it. Although my parents weren’t fully aware of how involved I became with the shows, I think they were more than happy to allow me to explore a creative avenue. They knew I wasn’t like the other kids at school, so I might as well do something different with my time.

There comes a point, as we’re growing up, that the real world shows up. Like an annoying friend of a friend at a party that you’re too polite to stop talking to, so you’re stuck with him for the night. Unfortunately, this bastard sticks with you for the rest of your life. Radio gave me the ability to hide in the toilet for a couple of hours, waiting for him to leave, I’ve come to realise that he never leaves… ever. But, you get better at dealing with him.

It meant that I spent a large part of my teenage life playing a role – the annoying teenage boy (not too difficult to perform, let me assure you). I was willing to call up a couple of shows and contribute my ideas, or just add some nonsense. At a time in my life when I could have felt very insignificant I felt important and special.

I became someone people laughed at, or with. To me, it didn’t matter which. My mate’s aunt even knew who I was because they listened the show – I was famous!

Thinking about my short-lived stardom (if I can call it that) it’s clear I relished the anonymity. It allowed me to not only be myself, but also try out being whoever else I could imagine. I think having that option as a teenager is incredible, you don’t have to be stuck being the person you are at school or around your parents.

Talk radio’s a mixed bag, there’s the fancy china on one side with Radio4 and on the other, is one of those plastic freezable cups you got on your 18th birthday with Talksport. You can’t deny that talk radio’s popular, LBC’s pretty much doubled its listening figures over the last decade (albeit they’ve gone national on DAB) and Radio4 is one of the most listened to stations in the country. Sadly, I’m not one of the millions of avid listeners any more, and it’s sad to think that part of my life is long gone.  I do look back and cringe at how involved I was, but ultimately, I’m proud to say – I was a radio call in freak and it made me who I am today!

 

It’s Wednesday, Let’s Dance…

I was looking through the notes on my phone earlier this week. I found this track played by a friend I’d made in Cambodia a few months ago and my God it’s even smoother than I remember it.

Can you imagine being this suave?

It’s also coincided with a week of positivity, remembering good times and thinking about the future so it’s been played a whole lot. Let’s be happy!

 

 

An Absence of Light

I recently got a very cheap car, so cheap that there’s only a CD player and there’s a limited amount of music I can listen to with my CD collection being as small as it is. I’ve been listening to the Modest Mouse album This is a Long Drive for Someone With Nothing To Think About. A line from the track ‘Ionizes & Atomizes’ inspired this.

I wake up damp, rays from the midday sun making me sweat.

it doesn’t seem right to call it sun.

A star with no name.

That’s better.

A long night, long forgotten, we still take off our shirts and show off our scars.

Remember when we wondered how flesh heals.

Hours spent staring at our hands. Spaced out. High.

I wake up into a dark night.

The moon is a right fancy mirror,

a bit too posh for us lot I think.

It doesn’t seem right – that lump of rock gets every ray of light it likes, while we, the hard working people are left to rot! In the darkness! There it is showing off its wares,

like the car headlights from next door waking us up again. And again.

Never able to get back to sleep, not Like before anyway.

Not much to do so we take off our shirts again, our scars are darker this time. Yet we don’t know why.

We were wrong about flesh, it never really heals does it.

I’m so lonely it hurts, people say that don’t they.

I can’t see past my birth, before then I was lonely I’m sure. I’m sure of it.

We’re supposed to be sad when we’re lonely, isn’t that the case

A sad little fetus, crying and the like.

Don’t cry no name, it’s not that bad out here.

Lonely little fetus. Isn’t it sad we’re born crying, as if we know what’s coming.

That’s how I got these scars, you know, the ones all over my chest.

Just like yours I know, but mine are older.

Pulled through the world, machines ripping at me.

New – ‘No More Scars!’

It never used to be like this, they say that as well.

Everything you need in the palm of your hand, ripping us to pieces slowly but surely.

It’s like music. I remember music.

Losing yourself in the rhythm until there’s nothing left to give, except it’s not like music at all.

Music made you feel alive, this just makes you sleep.

One long sleep until the inevitable.

That reminds me, it’s time to sleep again.

Until next time.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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