My new blog look

Yes, I am procrastinating, hence the new look blog. I need to figure out some colour scheme issues, but that can wait until after chapter 4 is finished.

No, I still have not conquered that final section to complete the blasted thing. I am not a self-proclaimed Queen of Procrastination for nothing.

I have to give credit to the lovely and talented illustrator and creative genius, Kanako of My Little Paris fame, for my lovely blog background image. I thought it represented me quite well, apart from blonde hair, slim physique and sophisticated demeanour. I am, however, a writer (albeit a procrastinating one), and a happy snapper with a fondness for cocktails, especially ones with a piece of alcohol-soaked fruit skewered with an little umbrella.

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Chin Chin

Is it just me?

I am 40 years old and I find colouring-in a very relaxing activity. Is it just me? It is almost midnight on Thursday 23 May 2013 and I have vowed I will not leave the library until blasted chapter four has been drafted and emailed to my poor long-suffering supervisor.

My shift finished at 9pm. Since then I have eaten my dinner, watched some Stephen Fry in Planet Word, and it is currently playing in the background for my listening pleasure.

While I was ‘watching’ Planet Word, I was colouring-in.

I went in search of a colouring-in book on the weekend. It wasn’t until tonight that I have been able to christen it. I have been using colouring-in as a relaxation technique since 2001 during the long and emotionally-draining job hunt on my arrival in post-9/11 London.

Tonight, I think it has been more about avoiding the inevitable. (It’s always something with me.)

However, maybe, after the relaxation of bringing some colour into the apple-picker’s life and listening to the wonderful Stephen Fry, I might feel able to get on with this blasted chapter and send it through the virtual world to my supervisor before I pass out from tiredness, or boredom, or frustration.

As someone who can’t draw to save her life, well, not anything beyond the basic geometrically unrealistic house and an amateurish cartoon smiley face, I get great pleasure from selecting the colours to bring a little colour-in to technicolor glory. I feel ill-equipped at present as I only have a selection of 12 pencils.

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Pencils are my preferred colouring-in tool. When I am doing it right, I will have a pencil box full of colours and variations on the theme. The sight of a large packet of colour pencils gets my colouring juices going. The choice between the 5 variations of red or blue is part of fun.

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I am pretty fussy when it comes to the colouring-in book. I am not really a fan of these ones tied to kids’ telly shows and films. They don’t feel right for colouring. I am a girl of the 1970s and we had certain styles of colouring-in books that just enhance the whole experience of colouring-in. I have been on what was fast becoming a fruitless search for the right colouring-in book until the weekend when I popped into a newsagency to see what they had to offer and amongst the undesirable telly/film tie-in colouring books, I found it. Thick black lines forming large and happy figures that cry out for a colouring-in by the enthusiastic colourist.

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It sounds like the screening episode of Planet Word is drawing to its inevitable conclusion and I vowed that I would get underway with some writing of my own when that happened. And I mean thesis-writing, not bollocks-ing away on my blog.

I leave you tonight with my current colouring creation. I promise that it will be the only relax-ating colouring I do tonight and this morning, (which begins in 5 minutes). I will, now, finally, return to blasted chapter 4. (That is not its official title by the way. No, it’s ‘Inside the Paris Hôtel-Dieu: The effect of the May 1505 Reform’ actually.)

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Happy Colouring-In!

Hollow Crown

For those of you lucky enough to live in the UK, you will have already enjoyed the ‘Hollow Crown’ series that screened on BBC2 recently. My friend Mary has just posted me the Radio Times special and I felt compelled to share some of the images with you. There are two reasons for this. First is simply to share the loveliness that is Tom Hiddleston, who plays Prince Hal/Henry V. You have to admit that he is much better looking than the original.

 

Once more unto the breach – One Saucy Monarch

Henry V by unknown artist, c. National Portrait Gallery, London
Not as pretty as his imitator.

Then there was the amazing photo of Ben Wishaw who plays Richard II that instantly brings to mind the famous Westminster Portrait of that ill-fated monarch, which is apparently on loan to British Museum this year in case you feel inspired to go view it and head to the wrong place.

Ben Wishaw as Richard II in BBC2’s ‘Hollow Crown’ series

Richard II Westminster Portrait, c. Westminster Abbey

That’s it from me. I only wanted to share these images.

Oh wait. I think one more of Mr Hiddleston looking saucy before I sign off. (Just ignore all the fake blood and battle ickies.)

Oh that’s quite lovely.

Oh, okay then. One more then! Honestly! You lot really need to get yourselves a real love life!

Holy Crap! I need a cold shower!

 

Postscript: So Much Joy!

Just had to add that on Saturday 30th March 2012 I popped along to the Mundaring Weir Hotel with my folks and Aged Aunt #3 to see Leo Sayer.

WOW!!!! Love, love, love, love Leo Sayer live! He was so fabulous!

Am campaigning the man himself to make sure he comes back to Mundaring Weir Hotel next year.

I felt rather guilty about being there to see someone other than my Musical Goddess Kate Ceberano, but the guilt was gone by the end of Leo’s first song.

All Hail the Fabulous Leo!

So Much Joy!

As many of you know, my opinion on life in Perth is generally unfavourable. This is not because Perth isn’t fantastic. It is! However, as the song goes, but not for me. However, every now and then something happens that just makes life in Perth a little more bearable than usual. I have already posted news of the Joy Bringers that were QI Live and the John Farnham concert of last year. What I haven’t gotten around to sharing were the Joy Bringers that were Alan Davies and Kate Ceberano.

Alan Davies, ‘Life is Pain’

First of all, there was the joy of Alan Davies returning to stand-up comedy after fifteen years away. It was probably not a wise expenditure given my usual state of ‘bordering on broke’, but there are some things that are just too good to resist and Alan was worth every cent of my $50. Plus there were all the added bonuses of spotting Ben Elton and his gorgeous wife, Sophie amongst the revellers. Then there was the book signing afterwards, which gave me the opportunity to thank him for a fabulous night. Oh, and I suppose that means the whole night cost me $75, but even so, still got my monies worth.

And then…

I am on Twitter. I signed up to ‘stalk’ Stephen Fry and have become somewhat addicted. I got home from ‘Life is Pain’ – title having a funny story behind it and not as depressing as it sounds – and decided to tweet Alan about the great night. I also, devilishly, thought that the best way of getting a reply was by mentioning a bodily fluid like wee-wee. Was I being too greedy? Apparently not.

Queen Procrastinator (@lke73)
12/2/11 11:54 PM
Hope Astor Theatre peops don’t know who sat where as peed myself laughing at @alandavies1 ‘Life is Pain’ tonight.

alandavies1 Alan Davies

@lke73 thanks for coming, don’t worry about peeing on your seat…

Dec 03, 12:02 PM via web

Woo Hoo! The perfect end to a most enjoyable night! And I wasn’t lying. I nearly did pee my seat laughing. I decided to abandon the water bottle about 15 minutes into the show when I carelessly filled my mouth with water only to find myself choking on a water-logged laugh. The poor chap in front of me nearly got drenched. I decided it was better to dehydrate than embarrass myself by soiling the chair or raining upon my fellow revellers.

Meeting Goddess of Song, Georgia Fields

Technically this Joy Bringing Event occurred in Melbourne, but it would not have happened if I had not been stuck in Perth complaining about being stuck in Perth. My friend Jenny-Anne called to say she was buying me a ticket to Melbourne. Yeah! She had been telling me about the wonderful Georgia Fields for ages and on a bad day, I decided to cheer myself by buying her album from iTunes. (I spend a lot of time and money at the Temple of iTunes.)

WOW!!! There is no more to be said. WOW!!!, just about covers it. When I wasn’t listening to Ali (see below), I was listening to Georgia.

Anyway…

There is a fabulous record store in St Kilda called Pure Pop and in the backyard of the store is a little performance area and Jenny-Anne goes every time Georgia plays there. The schedule showed I would be 5 days too late to see her perform with her Pa. Jenny-Anne decided she would ask if it was possible to get Georgia to play when I was there.

Two days later we had a YES!!

I got to see Georgia. I got to hear Georgia. Georgia became my Goddess of Song. She was divine. Simply divine.

And she thanked Jenny-Anne and I for asking her to play. And she signed the CD, which I had to purchase so she could sign, even though I had downloaded it from iTunes. AND she posed for a photo with me! AND gave me a hug!

This joy bringing interlude was on Thursday 8th December 2011. One remembers such dates.

Ali McGregor frolics in the Spiegeltent

In February, Mum and I went to the Perth Fringe Festival to see the fabulous Ali McGregor perform her ‘Jazz Cigarette’ and WOW! I thought listening to CD-Ali was joyous, but getting to hear her live. Sigh. Bliss. Joy. Rapture.

I had purchased her CD from iTunes last year after seeing her perform a soul rendition of a thrash metal song. AMAZING! It became essential listening as I tried to get through what would turn out to be, the last few difficult weeks in my job. How can one’s day go wrong when Ali sings! The fact I already had her CD did not prevent me from standing in line to purchase it again so I can have a quick chat and get it signed. She is my Goddess of Song and my Twitter Buddy! It would have been rude not to.

Kate Ceberano Returns to Perth for her Annual Pilgrimage to Mundaring Weir Hotel

One of the best things about living in Perth is knowing that every year around my birthday, Kate will come over to perform at Mundaring Weir Hotel, which is also extremely close to where I am lodging in the ‘Good Room’ of my parents’ house. It doesn’t matter how straitened the finances are, if I am in Perth and Kate is coming over, I beg, steal, borrow or earn the cash to attend because I couldn’t bear the thought of missing out on some Musical Goddess joy.

Was she superb this year? OF COURSE SHE WAS!! I have seen Kate ‘do her thang’ at least 50 times since my first Kate concert at age 14 and she has NEVER had an off night!

Jenny-Anne came over for the concert this year, so I had someone to get up and dance with, much to my Mother’s disgust because she offers every year, but I always refuse because she insists on trying to talk to Danny. Danny? She means Phil, Kate’s equally talented and gorgeous brother. It happened at a Kate concert at His Majesty’s Theatre. I was 24. We were in the front row. Mum kept yelling out “Danny! Danny! Danny” and my 15-year-old brother decided the time was right to tell me he had lost his virginity. Talk about ruining one’s Kate Buzz. So John is no longer allowed to come along to Kate concerts and Mum is not allowed anywhere near Phil.

The moment that made this year’s concert even more special than usual was getting to chat to Kate after the show. She came out to pose for photos and have a quick chat with everyone. I don’t have a photo to show you because just as Jenny-Anne went ‘click’, I spoke and the result was something like

 Kate looked gorgeous and I looked like I was about to implant my alien spawn in her chest. It had to go. I had blackmailed people with less hideous photographs. I’m not joking. It really was that bad.

But the marvellous thing was all the hugging. Earlier that day, Kate had tweeted about only having Melbourne-wear, which would be totally uncomfortable given the nasty heat we had that day. Our Twitter exchange went like this:

Queen Procrastinator ‏ ‪@lke73

Just hit me: Tonight is @KateCeberano Night at Mundaring! Woo Hoo!!!

Kate Ceberano ‏ ‪@KateCeberano

What to wear tonight? I’ve got a melbourne wardrobe….eeeek

Queen Procrastinator ‏ ‪@lke73

@KateCeberano Would you like me to bring around my lovely blue sarong?

Kate Ceberano ‏ ‪@KateCeberano

@lke73 thnxs , but how bout a Gucci wrap dress ( only kidding) ha ha

Queen Procrastinator ‏ ‪@lke73

@KateCeberano Oh, if only I was thin enough to own/wearGucci! Or anything other than Target or Bali sarongs. 😉

Kate Ceberano@KateCeberano

@lke73 I don’t think either of us truely want anything other than what we got right! Love the skin we in ( Still like Gucci shoes though)

Queen Procrastinator ‏ ‪@lke73

Woo hoo! Time to get showered, dressed & on my way to Mundaring Weir Hotel for @KateCeberano! But slowly cos it’s friggin’ hot out there!

Queen Procrastinator@lke73

@KateCeberano Got the blue sarong just in case.

So as we posed for the photo together, I said, “I’m glad you didn’t need the blue sarong” and she was “It’s you!” and grabbed me for a hug.

“Our love our conversations!”, she said.

“So do I. I get very excited when I get a response from you. Makes my day and I shout out, ‘Kate tweeted me!’, everyone just shakes their head and says, ‘so sad’.”

And we talked a few moments more and she grabbed me for another hug.

So who needs a photo when I had TWO HUGS FROM MY MUSICAL GODDESS!

Photo of Musical Goddess Kate Ceberano sans Alien Lisa trying to devour her

 

So Much Joy

So there you have it. Life in Perth has its moments. Not many of them I grant you, but when the moments come they are MARVELLOUS!

Coming up I have a visit by my niece and nephews, who reside in Canberra. Then WASO (West Australian Symphony Orchestra) are doing a tribute to the bestest composer, John Williams, the man behind the theme music for Star WarsIndiana Jones and Jurassic Park, amongst others. Stephen K. Amos and Hannah Gadsby will be in Perth making me laugh during the Perth International Comedy Festival, then to top it off, my Aged Aunt and I are going to see the stage show of Yes Prime Minister, starring the most dishy Phillip Quast.

That should tide me over for a while.

‘Breathing Flower’

I don’t know if I am violating the artist’s rights by downloading my personal clip of his wonderful art to YouTube for others to enjoy, but I just had to share this with as many people as possible because it gives me so much joy.

The ‘Breathing Flower’ is an amazing piece of art currently on display at The University of Western Australia as part of the Perth International Arts Festival. The person who created this glorious piece is Choi Jeong Hwa from South Korea.

http://youtu.be/U2Zdh7rMjUs

I was meandering my way around campus a couple of weeks ago, anything to get out of working on my thesis, and as I was coming up to Winthrop Hall, I heard a strange mechanical noise. Turning the corner I encountered Choi’s ‘Breathing Flower’. I don’t know why it delights me so. It’s big, beautiful and red. It’s mechanised loveliness. It’s a beautiful flower. All three very good reasons to find delight in something. But it’s more than that.

However, in keeping with the fact I can’t find words for my thesis, I cannot find the right words to describe why this delights me so. Oh well. I do not care. I am just going to enjoy it and I leave the link above for you to find my video on YouTube to enjoy it yourself.

Choi Jeong Hwa, 'Breathing Flower'