Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Sigh No More

ChildrenImage by joedawson via Flickr
Today I participated in a workshop that gave an insight in to the latest job search techniques as well as provided a range of tools to increase the number of opportunities available and ideally facilitate a return to work as soon as possible. I was encouraged by the material presented and I hope that I will be able to use what I have learnt successfully! I also learnt about a position available there and hope that I will be able to reach the interview stage. Afterwards I travelled to the children's school to watch my daughter Sports Day, I went with my partner and we watched the children race and then she cheered when I entered the father's race. I didn't win, according to those watching I finished between second and fourth, I'll take the later! I finally got my hands on the iPhone 4 this afternoon, last week I queued for hours at launch, only to return home empty handed. I contacted O2 immediately and was advised that I would be priority for when the handset became available. Whilst waiting to be contacted I updated my iPhone 3G to OS4, although the update was successful, I lost all contact details, photos and application history. Eventually I restored the handset to a backup dated March, unfortunate but nothing more than an inconvenience. I'm impressed with the new handset, the camera is still questionable but I'm sure to use video at every opportunity! Just need more people to get the handset so that I can experience FaceTime as that shows potential. Anyone?

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Tuesday, June 29, 2010


Mr. Potato Head and FriendsImage by Ian Muttoo via Flickr
The Wimbledon Championships and rain have long been synonymous with each other, this tournament has fortunately been rain-free and instead basked in glorious sunshine. The conditions have been pleasant, being unemployed has meant that I've been able to watch the sports but also enjoy the weather. 

I hosted a garden party yesterday to relax, drink wine and listen to music. We should consider a siesta during the summer period, would anyone oppose that being introduced? With the recent forecast I was surprised that today started with a downpour, this didn't affect Wimbledon but it meant that the infants sports day was cancelled at the children's school. Attending anything important for the children I value highly, being there for support and participating in the parents race has been a regular fixture on the school calendar. I'm hopeful that the reorganised date won't conflict with any other commitments. 

I collected the children after school and we were joined by my partner who completed her final exam this afternoon. Finishing the school she has attended for the last seven years, meaning she's free, until university in September at least! Following recent dialogue about higher education my daughter expressed her desire to study art, she even provided examples of her recent work which were encouraging. I hope that eventually both children will consider higher education but until then I hope they improve 'hot potato' because I'm unstoppable!!!

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Sunday, June 27, 2010


Giant Miroslav KloseImage by AndyCunningham via Flickr
I don't understand how many were so surprised when England were eliminated from the World Cup. The German team had so much more ambition, creativity and determination. Our performances have been dismal and qualification to the knock out stage didn't guarantee that we were about to hit form. The inevitable inquest will begin and everyone will begin the blame process which is standard after a disappointing tournament. Fabio Capello will dominate the media for the next few weeks but I feel that we have made progress. The national team didn't qualify for the last major competition and Capello has taken us forward. Anyone that thought we had a chance, was being seriously naive because we lack the technical ability and unity that other countries possess. I'm always negative about England performances because our players have club experience at the highest level but aren't decisive playing international football. I hope that Capello will stay on as England boss, I would also like to see the home nations play a tournament on a regular basis because friendlies aren't assisting our development. Frank Lampard's disallowed goal was unfortunate because we were on the ascendancy but I feel the outcome would have still been a German victory. They look strong and could go all the way after this performance! We will have to wait another four years and hopefully the team will be stronger!!

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Friday, June 25, 2010

Do I Look Bothered

Forever yoursImage by Glamhag via Flickr
Jobseeker’s Allowance is the main benefit for people of working age who are out of work or work less than 16 hours a week on average. I'm eligible because I'm unemployed and actively seeking work. Due to an oversight, I wasn't able to sign on which meant that the claim was cancelled. I had another interview today and was eligible for a rapid-reclaim as there has been no change in circumstances. I felt irresponsible because it was avoidable. I wrote previously that I thought that visiting the dole office was a grim and belittling experience but I have been impressed with the overall customer service. Although the people claiming benefits have been questionable on occasion. Today, whilst waiting in reception, these randoms wanted to know the contents of my briefcase. They epitomised the Vicky Pollard character from the BBC television and radio series Little Britain, played by Matt Lucas. Tetanus!! On a positive note, I restarted the claim and was booked to attend a Workshop which I hope will be very beneficial. Am I going to be unemployed forever?!

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Thursday, June 24, 2010

Firm Choice

The M62 motorway in relation to the rest of th...Image via Wikipedia
I wasn't convinced with the performance yesterday, obviously the result is important but there wasn't anything that made me feel that England have a chance in the competition. England beat Slovenia but there were still times they were hanging on for the three points. I want to be inspired, Wayne Rooney should be the player but it's been six years, in a 4-2 win over Croatia, that he last scored for England in the finals of a major tournament. At least we won't meet Portugal in the next round but I'm not confident whoever awaits in the later stages of the competition. Although I'm undecided about our World Cup credentials, Leeds Metropolitan University have become my firm choice for higher education. I cancelled all outstanding decisions and replied to the unconditional offer that I had received using Track. Accepting an unconditional offer, I'm agreeing that I will attend the course at that university, so must decline any other offers. They will send a letter which will explain whether there is anything else I need to do. I'm actually feeling scared now because it's become real, searching for accommodation and considering possible scenarios have added to the nerves. I'm certainly not having doubts but the countdown has started.

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Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Run Home, Jack, Run Home!

I have experienced so much since I was first introduced to my partner in Newcastle, and feel privileged that I have met someone who truly understands value and is an inspiration. I met her during a difficult period, but I now have an incentive and without her I probably wouldn't have considered higher education. Since I started writing, the focus has been building relationships with peers through the Internet, lifestyle choices and popular media. These aren't projects because I write about what's important and use different sources and platforms as reference. Although I have avoided writing anything about my previous relationship, one aspect that I regret is the circumstances surrounding the child. I obviously had to consider everyone involved and how they would be affected but it wasn't easy to distance from a child I had raised. I taught her many things and was fortunate to experience character building and many stages in development. I spoke to her Christmas but at that point the decision had been finalised. Today she celebrates her fourth birthday. I wasn't sure how to respond, especially as I don't want to create an unnecessary situation so I sent a greetings card. I hope she's well and that she enjoys her day, I would like to think that when she's older she will be able to communicate with my children at least. I suspect being young though that we have already been forgotten!
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Sunday, June 20, 2010

We Don't Have to Tikka Clothes Off

A traffic cone stuck in the mud of the old ent...Image via Wikipedia
Although I managed to reach a resolution with my children, I still didn't receive a Father's Day card. Instead they visited after lunch at an Indian Restaurant. The food didn't agree with them because my daughter went home and shortly after arriving my son had an accident. My mother was prepared for the scenario and presented me with a gift for the occasion. I enjoyed the day with my son, following a conversation he assured me that he wouldn't lie but would if his sister was at the same location. Don't know whether that should fill me with confidence but he definitely has a way with words. We played football for a while until my brother and his partner arrived, we both discussed recent festival activity. He went to Download and had every intention to travel to Rock Ness until problems with his employment interfered with arrangements. We're both currently unemployed and I'm worried about the financial strain on our parents. Especially with his situation because he's paying for a mortgage! I don't expect he will be unemployed too long though because he's a skilled professional with qualifications. Father's Day meant that there was a banquet available for everyone, the boy passed which was probably for the best considering! I later returned him home and thankfully my daughter was feeling much better. Let's see what the next week brings! Happy Father's Day everyone!!

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Saturday, June 19, 2010

I Wanna Be Like You

Meeting at 12pm and dressed in all things weird and wonderful, a carnival of colour, music and fun paraded from the London Eye to Gabriels Wharf on the South Bank to dance by the water and waves. Today the Secret Garden Party hosted the first ever ‘Secret Beach Party' and we went to participate in the action. Described as offering serious 'gorilla' party action there wasn't an indication that King Louie or any of his entourage would make an appearance. I presume that the term was supposed to be guerrilla, unconventional party action, I'm thankful that we didn't arrive dressed as our closest living relatives. Although, the South Bank provides many contributions from a variety of people, concluding that we wouldn't have looked out of place whatever we had worn to the event. The Secret Beach Party provided a glimpse of what to expect from the Secret Garden Party Festival, I definitely want to experience more. Afterwards, covered in glitter and attracting curious glances from tourists, we headed homeward bound for another party. This was a celebration for my father and brother, there was a decent turnout and my children were also involved. Shame that more events like this aren't hosted on a frequent basis because I would like to see more of our relatives! I received a few invitations to events over the summer which should be good though!!

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Friday, June 18, 2010

It's Coming Home?

Isle Wight Festival 2010 /2Image by joedawson via Flickr
I returned from the Isle of Wight festival with my partner Monday evening, the weekend surpassed our expectations. I was thankful that I used an online camping/festival guide, I can't begin to imagine how uncomfortable the ground must have felt without our portable mattress! The performances we caught have us wanting much more and we're already searching for alternative festivals to experience during the summer before we depart for University! Lounge On The Farm and the Secret Garden Party both sound appealing, Lounge On The Farm takes place after Prom which should be interesting. Since arriving home I have collected the children from school almost every night. It's a shame that this wasn't an arrangement in place earlier because I definitely feel more involved in their school work. I collected them this evening and had to wait some time for my son to emerge. This was due to a good behaviour chart he had taken to show other teachers, the reward for being good was a sticker from those that he visited! He emerged looking like he had completed a tour of duty, absolutely covered in stickers. Arriving home we decided to play football, preparation for the evening match obviously. My partner joined us after school, concluding a busy week with exams, I must admit that for someone who apparently struggles with tests she has appeared confident and composed. Signs of pressure were evident for the first time this evening but I feel that she will be fine regardless of nerves. Shame that the same can't be said about the England team! I admit to being critical of their performances on a regular basis, another uninspiring draw and a disappointing reaction from Wayne Rooney at the final whistle are a cause for concern. I think that people should be more optimistic though because we're still unbeaten and it's only the Group Stage. Better to peak later in the tournament! I won't be as positive Wednesday should we fail to get the result we need in the final Group fixture. Football isn't coming home, just yet anyway...
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Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Isle of Wight Festival

114Image by joedawson via Flickr
Last week I won a pair of tickets to the Isle of Wight Festival, held at Seaclose Park in Newport on the Isle of Wight. I travelled to the festival with my partner and this blog post contains details on everything that occurred over the weekend! I booked to travel with Red Funnel Ferries, Southampton, and this will be where I begin the review. We arrived at the ferry terminal in Southampton (Terminal 1) found at Dock Gate 7 on Town Quay Road, approximately an hour and a half before departure. We had booked to travel as foot passengers, allowing flexibility to travel home, on the return date, whenever we felt appropriate. With time before the next departure we went to find suitable parking, I wasn't prepared to pay excessive prices so found a residential area to leave the vehicle. I would advise this to anyone travelling to the festival! After purchasing essentials, we travelled to the terminal on a free bus and boarded the ferry just in time because it departed almost immediately. The journey was about an hour, our entertainment was a group on a stag party who were dressed as Spartans. Not sure of the rules but they weren't either because they had a manual so they didn't get confused. We arrived at East Cowes and were quickly ushered towards the 'taxi' area, I concluded that the representative meant the standard taxi's but we were mistaken. We were soon on board a water taxi (small boat), heading towards the festival, carrying approximately eight people, this increased when a second boat docked beside our craft and three more people boarded. Impressed but then what happened next exceeded anything we could have envisioned, another boat docked beside us but instead of people they offered burgers and beverages! Locals who knew how to capitalise on the increased presence on the Island due to the festival!!

Ready For The Weekend

We arrived at the Isle of Wight Festival camping entrance, our wrist bands were checked and we were advised on pitch availability. Aptly titled Binfield 2, this would become our home for the duration of the festival. After pitching our tent we weaved though the crowds, food stalls and themed areas towards the Main Stage! We were soon greeted by Calvin Harris, who advised to put on shoes to be ready for the weekend. Most people were wearing wellington boots but there were a few, like yours truly, who had other ideas. To be fair I had arranged to collect the wellingtons I had won the Saturday so I didn't have a choice! We navigated through the crowds, advising everyone to throw their diamonds in the sky if they feel the vibe - Jay Z hand gesture. Florence + The Machine were next on stage and the position we secured was directly in front of the large screen and camera crew, maximising television exposure and a decent position to view the action. Florence was exceptional, many people were anticipating Dizzee Rascal making an appearance and although he wasn't there they weren't disappointed as the performance was excellent. Friday night belonged to Jay Z, I admit that I wasn't convinced before Glastonbury but he silenced the critics then and tonight proved that he is one of the best performers on the planet. The reaction to his tracks was amazing, Mr. Hudson joined Jay Z on stage for Forever Young but no one could have predicted Kanye West making an appearance for Run This Town. There were incredible scenes and it was an amazing experience!!

Last Nite

The guide I used to prepare for the festival was accurate, it prepared us for everything, everything accept food temptation. I didn't stay behind in the Bubble Room and sample Fizzy Lifting Drinks like Charlie Bucket in Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory. Instead I had a burger which didn't agree with my stomach! Thankfully I wasn't being sucked into a ceiling-mounted exhaust fan, but I needed to burp repeatedly until I returned to the ground. This occurred at 5AM, I decided then that I would avoid burgers until after the weekend!

The following morning we decided to travel into town for supplies, outside the festival grounds no one appeared to know travel arrangements or distance. This made for an interesting journey which meant that we visited a Church and were told that God loved us. He also provided hot dogs and coffee which went down a treat! While I used the church toilet my partner even managed to reach level 3 on Sonic the Hedgehog which was an impressive achievement! We later found Morrisons and purchased supplies and then travelled back to meet the Millets representative before heading back to the tent. I always worry about first impressions with my tattoos but the Millets representative and his partner seemed unfazed. I suppose the interview and impromptu dance I had to perform meant they held all the cards regardless! After unloading everything, we headed towards the Main Stage and caught the end of the Palamo Faith set. For the majority of the Crowded House performance we made friends with those in close proximity. The firm message 'don't do drugs' echoed around the front area, through all ages which would probably cause concern to some parents!! Vampire Weekend lifted the crowd and their uplifting sound provided plenty of bonding opportunities. Tracks from their first two albums which include Cousins, Holiday, Oxford Comma and Cape Cod Kwassa Kwassa sounded amazing! Then came the decision - England's opener against the United States or Biffy Clyro - no contest because Biffy Clyro provide much more to cheer about! Wrapped in an England flag and screaming the lyrics to Mountains at my partner was immense and much better than another lacklustre performance from the national team! Justboy and Living Is A Problem Because Everything Dies emerged as classic festival sing-a-long tracks that will provide a long lasting memory of Biffy Clyro's performance!

Vampire Weekend and Biffy Clyro had set the tempo for the headline act but I felt that Blondie should have been earlier in the lineup. They had several classics that I knew but the crowd weren't jumping and instead anticipation for The Strokes simmered. That was until Queen's We Will Rock You sounded over the PA and the Strokes walked onto the stage and launched into New York City Cops and a set dominated by their 2001 debut, Is This It. I attempted to capture footage with the flip camera but it was difficult to stand due to the crowd surge at the front. It was a great experience, many have tried to emulate them but they're back and I can't wait for new material. They finished the night with Take It Or Leave It and we finished with failure to acquire the set list and being behind the entire field. This also meant that everywhere had queues or reached capacity, including Bowtime (Strongbow) where we had wanted to experience. At least we managed to feed a vegetarian a hot dog which provided incredible entertainment value. My partner even informed the unfortunate person that she had actually eaten a dog!

Live and Let Die

Disappointed that we weren't more on the pulse today because we were definitely too casual with our organisation. Probably due to waking early, cleaning and then I promptly fell asleep outside in the sunshine. Our neighbours weren't the most approachable or enthusiastic, they even dismissed The Strokes and felt that the crowd participation was minimal. Thankful that we weren't stood with them in the VIP section! The preparations for the day involved; creating a cocktail from the remaining alcohol in our tent, without any bar experience the end product was always going to be questionable. Restrictions are imposed by the Festival that don't permit entry with any beverages, the chant "No cans, no bottles, no glass" echoed loudly around the entrance. This was briefly replaced by screams following the introduction of a field mouse, the scenes of panic that followed provided amusement. We were drinking when the mouse appeared underneath my partner, I don't know who was more startled but watching grown men consumed with fear was hilarious! With plenty available for thrill-seekers we decided that '2xtreme' presented the most daunting experience, the ride was good but we emerged expecting more because we're hardened adrenaline junkies! Afterwards we interacted with the team, I attempted to charge the iPhone with a bicycle but it barely registered after fifteen minutes.

We briefly caught performances from Reef and Friendly Fires before eating became priority, our festival diet consisted of primarily hot dogs, nachos made for an enjoyable alternative. After The Editors performed on the Main Stage we headed back to the tent for an interlude and change of outfits. The Spiderman costume received widespread approval, super heroes are a big look at festivals! Pink provided the entrance of the festival, unfortunately we missed her performance but the music apparently didn't match the theatrics.

The final headline act was Paul McCartney, who closed the festival with a set that provided many highlights from his career. The Beatles have influenced generations of music fans, they were the inspiration behind my Confirmation name, that of my son and the Abbey Road tattoo I have taken from the album artwork! This was truly an emphatic finale, classic anthems, tributes, guitars and fireworks. Let It Be, Helter Skelter and many, many more classics were played to the adoring crowd. Hey Jude and the fireworks during Live and Let Die concluded an amazing weekend!

The Long and Winding Road

We planned to wake at 05:00 in the morning, although we managed to achieve the objective, we didn't stay awake. This meant that we eventually emerged at 07:30 and were well behind schedule. The bus departure queue was longer than my road, unsure whether the water taxi would be available we decided to take our chances. We were in luck, the queue was reasonable and we were soon onboard and hoped to make the 09:30 ferry to Southampton. Unfortunately everyone appeared to have the same idea and this meant that the queue was longer than a theme park ride. Several hours passed and we were soon waving farewell to East Cowes, Isle of Wight at 13:30 in the afternoon. I actually felt myself age in the queue but I won't announce that to friends. After navigating the Southampton transport system and practising for a marathon we were soon in the car heading towards London. We eventually arrived home at 18:30 but weren't bothered because we were buzzing from the weekend and already planning for our next festival! Thank you Millets for an incredible experience!!

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Thursday, June 10, 2010

All-Singing All-Dancing Family Fun!

Bratz - Genie MagicImage via Wikipedia
I have endured a month of uncertainty surrounding my children, I always felt this was unjust as I don't believe I did anything that deserved the silent treatment. Being the so-called 'fun guy' appears to mean that should I ever need to discipline them, forget it because it's not cool.

Like any father I enjoy having my children; playing, laughing, being affectionate but discipline is also a core aspect of parenting. I love being around them and even though University will create an obstacle, I don't believe it will be too difficult to overcome with the assistance of friends and family! Thankfully I met with them and their mother today to set the record straight! I was presented with another letter, written with the assistance of one of the teachers, it made sense and had a much better approach. This was the point that the first letter should have conveyed! Anyway, from a conversation I had with my daughter it emerged that both children were originally offended because I had referred to them as brats. Their mother laughed and stated that she has often used the term when disciplining the children. Why this escalated to become such an issue is beyond me but I really appreciate the cooperation from the school and their mother in finding a resolution. Move along, nothing to see now...

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Tuesday, June 08, 2010

Sign Here Please

Job Centre no moreImage by Mickal via Flickr
I still feel that visiting the dole office is a grim and belittling experience. I have resisted signing on for those reasons but today I went to the Job Centre. It wasn't an enjoyable process but it was necessary because it provides a basic income (jobseekers allowance) and options to find employment. I have been ignorant because I believed that I needed to wait six months before I could register unemployed but that wasn't the case. I would advise anyone who isn't employed or working the required hours to contact the Job Centre because they're there to assist! When the government announce updated statistics on unemployment they will be referring to my current situation. On a positive note the advisor hoped that with their assistance I would find work within thirteen weeks. Although I have been unfortunate finding employment, I'm kind of a big deal in the competitions I have entered! Yesterday I won tickets to the Isle of Wight festival, today after I had spent the majority of the afternoon organising transportation to the Isle of Wight, I won tickets to Beach Break Live which takes place in Pembery Country Park, South Wales. Unfortunately I had to decline the offer but I was tempted! Let's see what tomorrow brings...

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Monday, June 07, 2010

Trying Your Luck

NEWPORT, ISLE OF WIGHT - JUNE 14:  Music fans ...Image by Getty Images via @daylife
I have entered several competitions recently with the holy grail being to secure festival tickets. The Isle of Wight emerged as having possibly the best line-up because Jay Z, The Strokes and Paul McCartney were the headline acts performing at the festival. I entered several competitions to attend but I felt that I had been unsuccessful with applications especially with the festival starting this week. I awoke this morning and went through the usual routine; stretched and checked emails received! I'm usually greeted with several Facebook notifications, failed job applications, subscription emails and spam. Not today! Congratulations, you have won yourself a pair of tickets to the Isle of Wight Festival with, well done! I'm overwhelmed and also full of excitement for experiencing the Isle of Wight festival for the first time! This has definitely changed the outlook for the weekend! Who needs the World Cup! Along with the Isle of Wight festival tickets I have also won a small tent, a flip video camera, waterproofs and wellingtons. Can't wait!!

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Sunday, June 06, 2010

Show Me The Monkey

3rd Curious George PosterImage via Wikipedia
Around the world, the adventures of Curious George have been translated in many languages. Although we were evidently feeling the effects of too much 'cream', I felt inadequate compared to a curious monkey named George! The usual remedies followed to eradicate excessive alcohol consumption, these involved sleep and remembering the details from the previous night. We were clearly in demand this afternoon though because several opportunities were presented but it wasn't until the evening that we eventually recovered! This meant that we missed out on sunshine in the secret garden but with a barbecue next on the agenda we promptly awoke from hibernation. The barbecue was to celebrate a friends birthday, it's the first time I have been invited to a formal event with this group. I meet with them in bars and clubs, by chance usually, today I went with my partner and we had a good time. Still reeling from the previous night but the conversation was solid and the haribo Olympics provided next level entertainment! Afterwards we travelled to another friends to finish the night watching movies but sleep was always going to be the main attraction especially as we had only had a few hours!!

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Saturday, June 05, 2010

Am I Going To Be Like This Forever?

Dan Le Sac Vs Scroobius PipImage via Wikipedia
Resembling the cats that got the cream, I headed into London yesterday with my partner, pleased with ourselves because we had reservations. The Tesco Entertainment Album Chart Show was our first destination, presented by Nick Grimshaw, for a special extended set by US star Usher at London's Koko club in Camden. I applied for tickets online and was informed that they were run on a strictly first come, first served basis. We were advised to arrive early to avoid disappointment, although we arrived late we were still permitted entry to enjoy the performance. Koko was at capacity but we managed to make our way towards the front area and participate. During the second performance of his latest release, we located our friends and were introduced to other people in attendance. Afterwards we headed to the Hawley Arms, here we met J Brown from boyband Five, put together in 1997 by the same team that formed the Spice Girls. I had earlier managed to win tickets for Together Season 1 / week 13 at The Coronet, headlined by Dan Le Sac vs Scroobius Pip. After comparing tattoos at the Hawley Arms, we headed towards Elephant & Castle. The evening was enjoyable and our group increased in capacity which provided entertainment. Dan Le Sac vs Scroobius Pip had the crowd participating with their popular tracks and afterwards we headed home. The journey provided many side stories, photos with people holding gloves, primary school children with attitude and the longest route to work ever! Finally arriving home, Curious George became a factor in our relationship and I fell out of the bed. Not sure why everything became distorted but is this real life?

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Friday, June 04, 2010

Papa Don't Preach

LetterImage by joedawson via Flickr
Papa I know you're going to be upset, because I was always your little girl, but you should know by now, I'm not a baby!

I'm an active blogger and regularly produce entries of commentary, descriptions of events and other material. I enjoy writing, especially about media and my personal life, which intrigues and inspires at times. I suppose it provides a release, providing a way to express how I feel and what's on my mind! I would like to focus on Pen pals, who are people that regularly write to each other, usually via communication through the postal service. The attached letter is warm and affectionate, it's from my son and the type of letter that I would like to receive through the post. This morning I received a hand delivered letter, it was headed for my attention but not what I expected or feel that I deserved. The letter was written by my daughter and is related to what occured last month. I won't publish the contents because she has been badly advised, whoever encouraged such an unconstructive and spiteful letter should feel responsible. To declare that I'm disappointed is an understatement!

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Thursday, June 03, 2010

Lounge in Finsbury Park

Beans on Toast!Image by su-lin via Flickr
I'm really excited about festival season, indoor camping was interesting but I need to survive against the forces of nature. As a Cub Scout I regularly used to go camping; fires, ghost stories and activities were essential for an adventurous child. I still have a book that my mother purchased for me to read whilst away from home. Camping doesn't appear to be that popular anymore, other than at festivals. I headed to Finsbury Park tonight with my partner with the objective to secure tickets for Lounge on the Farm. The event was Lounge On The Farm Music Festival's 5th Birthday Launch Party, hosted at The Silver Bullet, London. Entertainment on the night was from cockney rebels Beans On Toast playing a full band show, and the fresh-faced folk from Gaolers Daughter, all backed up with DJ sets from Goldierocks, Ronnie Joice & LOTF resident DJs. Beans On Toast were great, although members of the crowd appeared preoccupied, this didn't discourage the band. Quite how the accordion player, who clearly enjoyed the alcohol, was able to stand was impressive! A conversation with the organiser provided disappointment though, the event was originally promoted to offer festival tickets to attendees but that arrangement had changed! Instead the revised event will be hosted next month, synchronise watches then...

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Wednesday, June 02, 2010

Talk About An Evolution

The mechanisms behind evolutionImage by Colin Purrington via Flickr
I'm disappointed that we didn't get to attend Evolution Festival this weekend, a music festival held annually in venues across Newcastle-upon-Tyne and Gateshead, England. Although to be fair it was much better to have time alone, indoor camping was also much better than anything Newcastle offered! Live music obviously swings the choice back in favour of Evolution Festival. That reason is enough to increase the employment search, I want to be exposed to more live music! I have been reluctant to succumb to job seekers allowance, purely because I feel like I will be labelled. The last thing I want is to be perceived as milking the benefit system or being comfortable with the circumstance. I apply for work daily and today travelled to the Learning Centre to apply for retail work at Bluewater. I also assisted in updating my partners CV but we were both unlucky on this occasion. I was provided with several contact details which were useful, the search continues..

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Tuesday, June 01, 2010

The Great Indoors

The Great IndoorsImage by joedawson via Flickr
Stage one, preparation. For this you will need one room which you will not leave. Soothing music. Popcorn, one bowl of. Fajitas, several wraps of, for consumption hot and spicy. Beans, toast, several servings of. Vodka, J├Ągermeister, Champagne. Mineral water, Lemonade, photography. One mattress. One small-sized tent. One television and several videos. And now we're ready. Elaborate build-up but then I feel that camping in the front room is probably an extreme scenario. Also we watched Trainspotting and if you're familiar with the memorable quotes then you will notice how I have adapted the original text to be relevant. I admit at first I wasn't expecting the 'Great Indoors' to be inspirational but it provided real entertainment. After the first night we realised that sleeping on the floor seriously damages the posture so we introduced the mattress which was much better. If we do manage to experience a festival this summer I need to remember to bring an equivalent because otherwise we may become permanently damaged! Indoor camping is definitely the way forward but remember no candles...

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