I switched my television on this morning to the news that there's going to be a General Election on Thursday 6th May. As I started my second cup of coffee they said that this will be the first British Election to feature televised debates between the party leaders - they've been doing it for ages in America of course so I suppose it was only a matter of time before we started doing it here - and that these would take place on Thursday evenings 'to avoid the live football coverage'.
So - people are more interested in seeing who gets through to the Champions League final than in who is going to govern the country. As someone who had to live through the hell of the Thatcher years I find that rather depressing, although also unsurprising - have there ever been a blander, more uninteresting bunch of non-entities than the current (at the time of writing;- Labour - Gordon Brown, Conservative - David Cameron, Liberal Democrats - Nick Clegg) leaders of the 3 main political parties? Has there ever been a time when the parties have been so similar in outlook, policies and general demeanour? Is it any wonder that people are so apathetic about politics these days?
In the meantime the Easter weekend in mad-guitar-land ended as it began, with myself and East in a public house discussing tactics for The Price. We really must do something else one day! Well, there's a lot to talk about at the moment, and with next week's show with The Members looming large on the horizon, a gig in Worthing booked for the end of May and recording plans to be finalised it looks like there'll be a few more nights of beery brainstorming to come. Excellent! East himself appears to have had a busy weekend's brainstorming - when he left The Load of Hay after Saturday night's Flying Squad gig he was heading triumphantly in the general direction of the nearest kebab house, a feat which he repeated on Sunday night after spending the best part of (gulp!) 7 hours on licensed premises. He heroically avoided a hat-trick last night (well, he wasn't intending to go there although I didn't actually see him go home!) for which I'm sure his arteries will be eternally grateful, although I guess there's always next weekend...
Saturday's stint in Balcony Shirts was enlivened no end by the news that a children's T.V. presenter on BBC2 was wearing one of our t-shirts. Scott and myself fired up the BBC iPlayer on the counter computer and sure enough on 'Swap Shop' and sitting opposite no lesser showbiz legend than Basil Brush there was a young chap called Barney Harwood wearing a 'Cornish Pasty Appreciation Society' shirt. Good man! We immediately put one in the window in euphoric anticipation of our busiest Saturday ever - it of course turned out to be one of the quietest. Bah! Then again since I was due to be at The Load of Hay at 7 o'clock to set the P.A. up for our gig there maybe that wasn't such a bad thing from my point of view? It turned out to be a highly enjoyable evening, with The Flying Squad turning in a good performance in front of a surprisingly large audience especially considering that it was the Easter Weekend. Huggy was as excellent as ever depping on bass and I saw Tim who I used to work with nearly 30 years ago for the first time in, well, nearly 30 years. A fine evening all round.
Sunday myself and the long-suffering Shirley journeyed up to the wilds of Suffolk (never a bad thing to do methinks) to play at (wife of CBB trumpeter Dave) Lyn's 50th birthday party. A suitably jovial gathering in the rather splendid Tithe Barn at The Brome Grange Hotel saw a rather unusual performance from The Pete Tobit Experience (or PTX as we often refer to it) as Pete himself had a couple of glasses of red wine before the show and so was rather, shall we say, 'relaxed'... in the interval between sets Dave showed a DVD of pictures of Lyn before Pete appeared singing 'Puppy Love' whilst holding a Donny Osmond mask (Lyn's a fan!) up in front of his face; two lines in he nearly tripped over as he couldn't see where he was going, then dropped the mask before abandoning the song completely and trying to get people to dance with him. He eventually got back to the song just in time to sing the last line. Sometimes this blog just writes itself! Our second set began with a completely unexpected (by the band at least!) rendition of 'Speedy Gonzales' before leading us through a fun if increasingly chaotic second set. Since Shirley and myself were staying the night we went for a late drink in the hotel bar after the show where Dave handed around pieces of birthday cake and Lyn showed admirable stamina by still being awake after dancing for pretty much the whole evening. Great stuff.
After a leisurely drive home yesterday my Easter weekend ended as it had begun. See - it's not drinking, it's concept art. Something like that anyway.