Monday, 9 February 2009

what i did next

a rare outing for both me and t to rob mckenzie's great grog reading on sunday, a fine venue gained at short notice in the face of rugby related impedimenta. present and correct were alan gay, jane mckie, andrew shields, yes that andrew shields, and tim turnbull.

mutual confusion for me and andrew as this stranger introduced himself in a friendly manner not realising that andrew didn't know my name. then it was my turn as andrew said, wasn't i reading something by you this afternoon. and yes he was.

a fine reading by andrew marred only by my wandering attention. i corrected this by getting my hands on his chapbook (available on his website) a thing of fine craft and design. yes, it's true we both like a decent font and will be put off without one but as we are both of a certain age i think this is only right and proper.

a wide range of readings, something for everyone but the surprise for us came in the shape of tim turnbull. that bloke said t, he looks like boycie (from whatever tv that character comes from). i see what you mean i said but i was certain there was something of the post modernist about him. ideas of which we had to abandon as soon as he opened his mouth and especially when he did his t.s. eliot poem which, along with the yorkshire tea towel were our favourites. maybe it's some in the water in that part of england but a commitment to wordsmithery, spot on delivery and sharp comic timing seems more common there than elsewhere, either that or it just sounds better with a northern delivery. either way we want the forthcoming mormonhead ep - who can resist a belinda carlyle cover that goes i bet on a donkey, it came fourth, scarborough, it's a town up north? should we have bought his collection? yes we should. but that shall be remedied. and yes, tim, short of mass production t will embroider you a tea towel...

on monday i headed in to a snow bound edinburgh to pick up andrew at chez mckenzie. the plan was to go off on a meandering journey via linlithgow palace, stirling castle and the trossachs and back thru perth. linlithgow was snowbound but picturesque. we even managed up on the roof before being warned off, wisely, by the workers. it was a drop. we didn't have the time to properly visit stirling but i thought a wander round the esplanade might be fine. if we didn;t have to pay for our brief walk! so off to the wallace monument, not just to see the monument but also to lay eyes on possibly the worst bit of sculpture i've ever seen. but it was gone! slight tho my national conscience is i had an almost palpable sense of relief even if i was somewhat disappointed for andrew's sake that he couldn't witness this awful car crash of a thing.

off to callander to meet sally evans at her book shop, a treasure trove if ever there was one, then up and round loch earn for some scenery before heading into perth where i forced andrew, yes forced him, to drink whisky. poor fortune saw our stocks at a low ebb but them's the breaks. a most enjoyable day with andrew, a genial travelling companion if ever there was one, who talks even more than me and what's better, on subjects i'm interested in! brilliant! tho he does seem to believe roger federer is somehow better at that tennis game than the nadal fellow which is surely wrong.

back to edinburgh for the stanza gig. lovely singing from gill bowman which rescued me from post insomnia and driving tiredness, then a really quite engaging wee set from kate clanchy. she was onto a winner as soon as she did her poem about lacking a sense of smell, which from an anosmic like me, was always a winner. i will be reading more of her for certain.

all in all a fine couple of days. good poetry, good discussions and no thought of the bike. well hardly any...

15 comments:

Sorlil said...

really, you don't have a sense of smell?

swiss said...

only at the most rudimentary level. i can smell only the worst things at work - an advantage. i can't smell electrical burning, plastic melting etc - not so handy!
most perfumes, plants and the like - they just don't register.

Andrew Shields said...

Thanks again for the lovely day yesterday!

swiss said...

no worries! all those books to read!

strangepress said...

impedimenta!!!!

excuse me whilst i scatter rose petals in yr wake.

that has got to be the word of the day, if not week.

Rob said...

Good to meet you, and glad you enjoyed the reading. Tim Turnbull's book, 'Stranded in Sub-Atomica' (Donut Press), is terrific, by the way.

And yes, Andrew likes to talk - just as well what he says tends to be interesting!

Andrew Shields said...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VBG0kldaIe8

swiss said...

a day before you're back with children's youtube! lol but they are excellent, even if the sight of a man in a sleepsuit is vaguely disturbing.

of course now my morning is disappearing as i watch loads of this
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8p4Ot-P8kW8&feature=related

swiss said...

i think perhaps mmoneypenny will appreciate this
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TaW-6Cg95_o&feature=related

Andrew Shields said...

Glad to be of morning-killing assistance. Ask me anytime, blah.

Feltbug said...

I must confess
I thought you wore a dress
It was remiss
Because it rhymed with swiss
To think of you as miss :)

I have just been re-reading your blog with new eyes
I must apologise!!!

Sorry about the dreadful attempt at poetry too.

swiss said...

i wouldn't worry about it. you're not the first plus, because of that, i don't give much away in terms of gender on the blog!

Andrew Shields said...

I was not sure about your gender, either, until some post of yours made it clear at some point. I don't remember which one, though!

Sorlil said...

it's quite a skill to be able to write reasonably gender-free, your poetry certainly doesn't give it away!

swiss said...

i like to try and make it for everyone...