Sunday, 26 February 2012

Ramblings due to a broken tv......

Today could be a day for going insane.  It seems there's a problem with the aerial on the roof, meaning no tv for me.  Anyone that knows me well, knows this is a serious matter!  Listening to the radio or watching things on the laptop just isn't the same.  I know it's unhealthy being addicted to rubbish tv but I'm afraid I am, and today is proving a difficult day!!!!!!  Is it time for bed yet?

So, what's been happening since my last blog?

I got good news.  My lease on the flat is being extended for another 18 months.  Having a landlord who moved to Canada for work meant never really knowing if he'd want to come back and live here, but apparently I'm a good tenant and can stay.  Crouch End - you're stuck with me.

With free time on my hands a bit more these days, I've decided to sign up with an Extras agency.  Not anticipating too much unless anyone is specifically looking for middle-aged woman with bright red hair but I guess you never know!  5 days on Brighton Rock gave me a taste for more extras work but the next time, I'm praying for clothes that fit me and don't make me look an absolute idiot.  Not too much to ask.  I went to the casting for The King of Soho (a film about Paul Raymond and starring Steve Coogan) but as I havn't heard yet, I'm not really expecting to now.  Perhaps the wardrobe department actually knew their stuff this time and realised that there weren't any women in the 60s with hair my colour!

Film club is definitely back on track with some great nights on again.  We went to see The Small World of Sammy Lee last week, a 60s film about a gambler in Soho - where else?  No visit to the roof terrace bar as planned as London Fashion Week folk had taken over.  You know it's London Fashion Week when you see people wearing Mickey Mouse ears as if it's a completely normal thing.  It isn't - please stop.

Back to Soho again on Wednesday to (another) launch of the We Can Be Heroes book about London Clubland 1976 - 1984.  An interesting night in the basement of the Sun & 13 Cantons on Beak Street.  Great little venue and the usual fascinating crowd turned up - Rusty Egan, Philip Salon, Mark Powell etc.  More exciting to me though was the fact that Adam Ant's hat-maker Mich Dulce turned up.  Very sweet she was too.  The book is beautiful and I'm wondering if a kindly Mother might buy it for me at some point for a birthday present!  I was too young to be part of the London club scene during the time the book covered.....except that I did visit the Wag Club in the early 80s, when it was a dark, dingy jazz club, full of people in black roll necks.  (I was one of those people).

I'm off to find a ladder and fix our tv aerial....or maybe just complain quite a bit on Facebook.  Ciao for now darlings.

Sunday, 12 February 2012

Crouch End days, Soho nights

More snow this week meant the wearing of ugly boots out in public.  Please note the word 'ugly' not Ugg...that would be a step too far for me.  I'm very much looking forward to Spring when I will be surgically removed from my cheap fur coat and Gran-style hat.  My macs are feeling all forgotten in the back of my wardrobe.

I've realised that my blog is probably of no interest whatsoever to anyone but myself but it takes the place of a diary that I wrote for years, and is a written reminder of all the things I do these days.

Film Club continues and a packed house on Monday for a night celebrating the 80th anniversary of the Windmill Theatre.  Lots of the original Windmill Girls were in attendance and it was very sweet to see them altogether, for probably what was the first time in decades for some of them.  For ladies, some of which were in their late 70s/80s, they're looking good for their age!  I think if any more red wine had been consumed, we may have been treated to a spur of the moment tableaux performance.  ("If you moved, it's rude"). 

This week has been a good week as far as charity shop purchases go - a "Junior Miss Nylon" M&S flowery dress that fits perfectly from Crouch End, and an animal print cardigan from Muswell Hill.  I feel twitchy if I don't do the charity shop rounds regularly but am cheap these days and put more back than I buy.  It would of course been rude not to have a danish bacon roll in our favourite cafe' in Muswell Hill yesterday, Nyborgs.  I realised yesterday they have a bookcase full of lovely books that you can take home for free, if you leave a book in it's place. I've made a mental note of this and will be picking up the "Swedish cakes & cookies" book next time I visit.

A night out in Soho last night which took in many bars along the way, finishing up in Camden.  First stop, The Sun & 13 Cantons in Beak Street for a book reading from "The Great Rolling Stones Drug Bust" (& a complementary Jack Daniels cocktail - thank you Babette & Robert!), The Star Bar next for a Baileys latte (as you do), Phoenix Theatre Bar for old time's sake - members only after 8pm darlink but the extremely posh doorman liked our coats obviously (plus it was half empty).  Half the bar was reserved for the cast of Jersey Boys and we had Frankie Valli as a soundtrack.  Could be worse - could have been reserved for the cast of Glee (or something).  Coach & Horses (another old haunt) where a full blown piano singalong was going on....and finally (phew!) Mind Yuh Business at Bar Solo which was a fairly enjoyable experience and I even had a dance.  It's very rare to do so much on a Saturday night these days but it's good once in a while.  Thanks to our guide for the night - Little Paul.

Sunday, 5 February 2012

Freezing February....

Only yesterday I commented how I hoped we'd got away with snow this hour later, down it came.  I woke up to a deadly silent road...even the owls had hibernated.  A good few inches of snow must have fallen since 5pm yesterday and I'm looking out at small children on sledges and my neighbours (donning Percy Pig wellingtons) building a snowman.  I'm disappointed with their efforts I have to say.  I was hoping for a full adult size snowman which I was going to ask if I could dress in my 60s flowery rain mac and one of my collection of 60s hat....just for photographic opportunites you understand.

It's been a quietish week but I was very happy to get back to the Society Film Club again....back at the Sanctum Hotel.  (I cheered a little cheer at this news).  This weeks' offering was all about a collection of drag queens (gay and straight) & generally bizarre but fascinating folk in late 60s/early 70s San Francisco called The Cockettes (formed by an amazing character called Hibiscus).  They performed what could only be described as their own version of show tunes....random, chaotic and out of tune!  Back then, you could apparently claim benefits if you were deemed mentally unstable so these characters, with their glittery beards and outlandish outfits, lived off the State is communes, took a lot of LSD and became infamous for their shows.  Eventually the group all went off into different directions and disbanded.  It was interesting to see what had happened to The Cockettes but sadly several of the members had died from Aids.  They live on, however, through the Society Film Club!

I went to my first Vintage Fair of the year yesterday in Islington.  It's a sad state of affairs when all you can find to buy is a cupcake but as it was the best (rose) cupcake I've ever tasted, it was still worth a look.  Lunch this Saturday was in Stiles Bakery in Chapel Market.  Don't let the outside put you off - yes, it is a cheap cafe' but a cheap cafe' of the best kind - proper freshly cooked meals including a drink for probably less than £6.  We had a mushroom omelette, chips & salad, and a full English brekkie, plus very good coffees, which might not sound thrilling but it was top quality and worth writing about on here. 

A trip to Covent Garden in arctic conditions after leaving the cosy Stiles Bakery, to carry out a secret mission.  I'm not a fan of Covent Garden at the weekend these's impossible to navigate and you could wander aimlessly for ages.  Next time I'll be armed with a compass and an A-Z.  Alternatively, if someone could leave a trail of biscuit crumbs back to the tube, I'd be grateful.

Keep warm everyone & pray that London Transport runs normally tomorrow!