Rock and Roll and Brew

This is the blog I was planning to write way back in August, I just never got round to it. While it’s also the mating call of the Lesser Spotted Procrastinator, I suppose “better late than never” applies. In fact it applies to most things, with the obvious exception  of Justin Beiber, to whom “better never than late” is clearly the prevailing idiom.

This is also, in truth, Part 2 of last week’s blog Summer of Love. After talking to The Grady Twin*, we agreed that Summer of 69 would have been a better title, I just never properly considered the joke before the blog went live. I clearly suffer from premature publication.

Just a note for the uninitiated, if it’s in bold green, then the text is also a hyperlink to something else, usually a YouTube video. I predict a lot of these in the coming paragraphs.

And before heading into the main thrust of the blog, I would like to make mention of T-Mo*. She was disappointed, having not being referred to last week, so I agreed to take her to lunch to compensate. Then she stood me up in favour of producing a bucket full of snot instead. And I believe she will also stand me up tonight. Women – you can’t live with them, you can’t kill them!

On reviewing my notes for this blog, I had added a line that both Penzance* and Miss Chelmsely Wood 2002* had made comment on last week’s Lucy Pinder picture. The Divine Mr M* also commented on the same picture, although (and perhaps unsurprisingly) he took a rather different stance. It just goes to show that you can’t please all of the people all of the time. Given this, and that the ex-lovely Ms Pinder remains dumped, I give you an alternative Lucy:


Many, many years ago, I was quite into my music, and actually won a number of music quizzes with my first pub quiz team, The Corner Crew. This, I know, will come as a surprise to The Royal Blokes*. However, time, kids, Stock Aitkin & Waterman, and dance/(c)rap music took their toll. The final nail in the coffin was shit like Pop Factor that has been on TV seeming for the last decade and a half. My love affair with music died a sad death.

However, one love affair begets another, and this was rekindled once TRG* came into my life. The one thing I always kept faith with though, was the unusual and unexpected cover version. This started with the obscure I’m a Believer by T’Pau in 1987,and continues to this day with Eagles of Death Metal singing Duran Duran.

For those of you who followed the ‘bold green text’ instructions above, you will have noted the heavy guitar based link between the two bookended tracks. And for those who haven’t – go back, read and follow the instructions, and rejoin the rest of us when you’ve done what you should have. Otherwise, I’ll be forced to call your Mum and have her take you home!

The TRG link is that we’ve started going to local live music venues to see (mainly) cover bands. Technically I’ve started, she’s been going for years. My introduction to this was a spare ticket to see ABBA (Swede Dreams) who, apart from the dodgy wigs and Swedish accents, were great. And when the band finished the DJ came on and played ‘proper’ music until well past my bedtime.

Now you might consider it strange that, given my age and general staidness, I’d be going to gigs. But not so, given the nature of the subject matter, the more mature customer is welcome. And they serve Newcastle Brown. In bottles. Not in a pissy plastic glass. It was at the ‘ABBA’ gig that the DJ played Mr Brightside, a song I’d only been vaguely aware of until then because it was on BBC3s The Call Centre.

Sacking people for not singing at work would give our HR department a heart attack – I think we should introduce it straight away! (click the link to understand that last comment. You know you want to)

Anyway, like Ronnie Corbett or Cpt. America*, I digress. Mr Brightside. What a bunch of weird lyrics that is. How does jealousy turn saints into the sea? And do the saints change course and get wet, or do they actually metamorphose into a big blue wobbly thing that mermaids live in? And don’t get me started on swimming through sick lullabies!

It turned out that I was the only one in the place that didn’t know this song. This also became obvious when we went to see Maetloaf (the Black Country Meatloaf – TRG may think that ‘Mark Taylor is a Dead Ringer for Meatloaf’ was better, but I couldn’t possibly comment). Again, I was the only silent person in the room. Instant sacking by Nev would have followed.

I set out to learn the lyrics and, after a few false starts and having the song on permanent repeat on my iPod for a whole week at work, success ensued. So at the next gig – Duran – (fronted by a Shakin’ Stevens lookalike; piss poor; in the words of Francis Albert Sinatra, so good they named them once) the DJ never played the bloody song. It’s good enough for ABBA, but not for a bunch of Durannies apparently.

Alls well that ends well, we went to see The Killerz after that for a guaranteed play and everybody lived happilly ever after.

We are now considering renting a camper van and going to Glastonbudget 2016. It’s like Glastonbury, except thay’re all cover bands. Which means you don’t have to pay £300 to suffer Kanye West. Bonus. Bobs’s* husband is playing there this year as well (he’s the bassist in The Antarctic Monkeys). Not that that has any bearing on the matter, just a random fact to insert into a random blog.

Unfortunately I can’t get TRG to agree to go and see The Sex Pissed Dolls in a couple of weeks. Her excuse it that it’s on a school night. It may also have something to do with the blonde guitarist. That or they look a little bit crap. Apart from the blonde guitarist that is.

Anyhow, just so you don’t consider me some form of rock dinosaur, I’m still down wid da kids and listen to Radio 1. Only this morning DJ Div was talking about an Oedipius Complex. Then, so the teenies would understand, he tried to explain this in terms of Back to the Future! FFS! When did the BBC remove the requirement for presenters on the third most popular national radio station to have a classical education? Iron Man’s* ex would be turning in her grave. If she was dead.

The observant amongst you will have noticed the lack of quiz updates of the last couple of blogs – which in practice means since the World Championships back in June. This will be put right in the next blog. To paraphrase the bit you always used to get at the end of a Roger Moore Bond film: The Grumpy Old Man will return in The Unknown Stuntman.
[raise eyebrow, exit stage left].

Footnote: While I’d love to take credit for the ‘you can’t kill women’ line, it actually comes from True Lies. Tom Arnold said it, at a time he was divorcing Roseanne Barr, so I bow to his greater experience in these matters.
‘You can’t please all of the people…’ is attributed to the poet John Lydgate, not Abraham Lincoln as most people seem to think. Lincoln substituted ‘please’ for ‘fool’ to avoid a lawsuit for plagiarism. I once won a packet of biscuits at a pub quiz for knowing that fact. Lincoln biscuits.
An Oedipus Complex is the desire for a child to have sexual relations with a parent of the opposite sex – sons with mothers, daughters with fathers. Back to The Future is where the mother desires sexual relations with her son. Totally different. To clarify, neither Oedipus nor Lorraine Baines-McFly were aware of the true identity of the object of their respective desires. That’s be just wrong.

And you still need to click on the links to understand the majority of this blog

*see Cast List


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