Jesus wept

Christmas 2012

Christmas 2012 – Jesus Wept

So here we are. Christmas! 🙂

The St. Leonards’ Christmas decorations: situated on the vacant lot by the station and probably paid for by Colin Booth, the sculptor of ‘Jesus Wept.’

St. Leonards’ used to have proper Christmas street lights. Of course, those were the days when the council could afford them; before we found out that bankers and politicians were infallible humans, too; not to mention crooks. They were the days before ‘austerity measures’ became the new black; when you could put petrol in your car without a mortgage, and buy your weekly groceries from your local grocer.

Christmas 2012!

Sixty years ago, when the general belief was that by now we’d be living in a utopian dream and have colonies on the Moon and be settling Mars (like the wild west), did anyone dream we’d be where we are today? The dystopian fiction I read never went this route. Yes, they’d be a nuclear war followed by a nuclear winter, or, killer robots, or, a pandemic that kills all but a ‘lucky’ few. No one dreamt that the world superpowers would switch; that they’d still be starving children, a vicious re-emergence of AIDS,  ice caps melting, and a slaughter of innocents by deranged gun toting lunes…. No, that wasn’t seen. Not in any stories I read.

The picture above isn’t good quality by any stretch of the imagination, but it’s still in colour. Maybe black & white is closer to the truth:

Jesus wept bleakly

Jesus wept, bleakly.

I’d guess you would weep if you were being crucified for humanities sins. After all, it’s not terribly fair, is it?

This photo manipulation is closer to the truth of this Christmas in this place. Bleak. It’s bleak, and no I’m not turning all Dickensian and Baa Humbug. It’s just the truth. And we’ve not got it bad compared to some. I wonder. I wonder if, with the way things are going, Colin Booth might not have been closer to the truth if his neon sign had said ‘Arbeit macht frei.’

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All the above bollocks aside, I hope you have a great holiday, sincerely. 🙂

Around and about

As I haven’t blogged in what seems an age, and as I’ve just backed up my phone camera – which had over a thousand pictures on it, I thought it only decent to post what’s probably tgoing to be closer to waffle than diary. This is in reverse order, so the more recent are at the bottom and the oldest at the top. However it does include Royalty, so those who are all pooped out with the Jubilee should beware.

Here then, are a few scattered oddities around and about town and other places:

There’s a vacant lot by Warrior Square Station. Obviously they couldn’t sell it as a building plot – besides, there are so many empty shops nearby you’d have your pick and you definitely wouldn’t want to live there – so instead they have used it for a mini sculpture park. Not that you can walk inside and touch! To me it looks like they had an accident putting razor wire on the fence, but what do I know. The following two shots are, I think, artistically better.

Better viewed from more abstract angles and directions.

Then I come upon this. The Tubman. I’ve never been inside, and I’m not sure I’d want to drink there without a Harry Potter to come to the rescue. I kind of like the decoration in a dark, black goth, sort of way: but it’s not at all jolly hockey sticks, or very welcoming. It’s more a ‘fancy a pint of blood?’ kind of gaff.

Up the street a nadge is this little lane that instantly sparked a number of fantasy plots…

…and just a stones throw away this – which made me wonder at the fantasy plots I was musing over; at humanity and its taste in general, and the locals and their taste in particular. I guess I’m just not a Gnome lover. Elves and Dragons and Wizards, yes: Gnomes, no.

The next day I was walking along the seafront and saw this beautifully painted car. Being presently carless I’m rather jealous, though I’m not sure how I’d feel if I had a bad hangover.

Then, on the 2nd June, we went to Canning Town to play a gig in a venue surrounded by scrap yards (most odd). Still, you can’t deny human ingenuity. One of the scrapyards had cleverly thought of a way to make extra revenue. I’m not convinced ‘Oasis’ is intentionally ironic, though I rather hope it is.

Then came the Jubilee. Locally, excitement was high. Here, Queen Victoria sports the latest in Royal headwear.

Though I’m not a dyed (or should that be died) in the wool Royalist, I do think the Queen is a remarkable woman, and the pageant on the Thames was rather splendid – even though the coverage was so dumbed down and crass the BBC should be spanked. Here though, I was convinced she was spying on me having tea.

Which brings me to yesterday – or, by the time this is posted, the day before yesterday. The last night of the Jubilee celebrations. We played a really good gig at The Rose and Crown in Worthing. The stage was tiny, but the audience wasn’t!

So that’s me up-to-date. Camera phones are wondrous beasts indeed!

Upping Sticks

From Pett to Bohemia - and about time, too!

We’re upping sticks and moving from countryside to town: from Pett Level to Bohemia, St. Leonards.

The reasons are numerous, but probably the most salient is the saving of £250 a month in rent, plus, it’s a house and a place we can be ourselves. For the last two years we’ve been living in this … umm, well, to be frank, a tarted up shack. The owner bought it at the very top of the market for £250,000 and consequently has to charge a ludicrously high rent for it. We viewed on a beautiful may day and, obviously, had on rose tinted shades. In summer it’s sweltering; in winter it’s bloody freezing. Worse, this year we’ve been bitten to death by mosquitos, to boot.

We’ve never put pictures up, B wants to paint murals and can’t, and I’ve felt trapped. The house we’re moving to is a different kettle of frogs entirely. We can do what we want there. Paint it how we like; do what we want, and provided we pay the rent, and don’t raise it to the ground, all is peachy.

Another BIG motivation in moving into town is travel. Whichever way you look at it, if you live in the country you have to travel to get anywhere. The nearest shop to us is six miles there and back: a supermarket fourteen, and petrol ain’t cheap!

Jobs. Unless you want to start a small smuggling operation there aren’t any out in Pett. Besides, ‘they’ have radar and sniffer seals and you can’t ‘bring in’ much in a radio controlled boat – even if you have one, which I don’t. I’ve a gas guzzling car, but it doesn’t count.

So that’s what I’m up to. Meanwhile, in Libya, Muammar Gaddafi has legged it and the Arab Spring is trundling on and gaining ground with every day. Odd it is how there are so many different ways to live the brief time we’re allotted on our lone planet circling a sun in the spiral arm of one of billions of galaxies.

It makes you think, doesn’t it.