Saturday, 30 October 2010

Life Perceptions vs Human Tendencies

My son came to me the other day and asked if I would mind taking him to join our local Air Training Corps (ATC/Air Cadets). Recently he has also asked if I would take him for Guitar and Skateboarding lessons. Whilst he is prepared to pay for the Skateboarding lessons himself, and I had already promised that I will pay for the guitar lessons, this extra activity became, in my mind, an issue of time - and as I have finally got around to starting to sort out my house properly (more on that later), a rather large one at that. I didnt say anything to him, but my first thought was "What!!?? How the HELL am I supposed to fit ALL of that in!!?? For Heavens Sake kid - Get A Clue about Life will you??!!" But then I stopped - mid thought. Isn't "getting a clue about life" EXACTLY what he is trying hard to do? And as his mother am I not morally and emotionally obliged to help him do that? Well yes - but that isnt exactly what really occurred to me first;

I thought about all of the things that, as his mother, I would be prepared to do for my son. I came to the conclusion that in the end if his life was in danger and the only way to save it was to endanger my own I would do it - of course I would. If my son stepped out infront of a truck, I would run infront of that truck to push him out of the way knowing damn well that it would kill me. As his mother I live with that knowledge every minute of every day and will do so for the rest of my life - that reality will never change for me. SO, here I am, prepared to die for my son, to give up what is left of my whole life, and yet I was questioning whether I was prepared to take time out to get him to the ATC and his extra-curricular lessons, which is nothing, a mere drop in the ocean compared to what I am ultimately prepared to do for him.

It occurred to me then that it was more a question of keeping things in perspective, and avoiding the tendency as a human being to over complicate things - often, and a lot!

Saturday, 14 August 2010

Poem: "At The End Of The World"

Sitting here,
At the end of the world,
Sea lapping the shore
Can I ask for more?

I feel closer to you
When I write,
Tho you are miles away
Who's to say

When I will see you
Soon or late?
All I see I think of you
All I do.

Are you doing the same?
Oh lifes little game!
Keeping us apart,
Lovelorn Heart.

The wind is singing
The breeze is bringing,
But I take not
For what have they got?

The sun is shining
I feel, but dont see.
You are not here
With me.

Your words warm my day
And calm my night,
But you are away
My lungs are tight.

The meds dont work
My lungs still hurt,
My heart is numb
For you cannot come.

Saturday, 24 July 2010

Proof that God has a sense of humour.

Over the years I have heard many people say that God no longer has a sense of humour, which is why the world is turning to shit.  I agree that the world is indeed turning into the worst pile of caca, however I also have irrefutable proof that God does have a sense of humour. Here it is:

My Dad is 6ft 2, he is a BIG guy (weight wise), he has curly blond hair and pale skin, not as pale as mine admittedly, but still pale.

My Mum in comparison is TINY, she is 5ft 3, skinny as a Racing Snake, she has long straight brunette hair, and gorgeous, olive tanned skin.

I have ONE sibling - a brother, who to add insult to injury is just over 7 years younger than me, but despite everything we are both an equal mix of both our parents. However, the DNA wasn't exactly distributed evenly lol:

One of us is 6ft 2, skinny as a Racing Snake, has blond STRAIGHT hair and looks like a bronzed Greek God.....................
And the other is just 5ft 4 and a little curvy, with extremely pale skin (thanks to a sunlight allergy) and long curly brunette hair that (very) often likes to do its own thing.

Guess which one I am? Lol.

There is a chance I was lied to: Perhaps I wasn't born in the local hospital as I have often been told, but instead was born in the DeVito/Shwarzenegger Institute For Genetic fecking Research!!

So there you have it: God DOES have a sense of humour, and it is EVIL!!! Lol.

Sunday, 18 July 2010

Following my own damn site!!?????

I cannot believe that I have had to become a follower of my own bloody, site just to send a message to one of the people who are following me! How mental is that??? Did anyone else have to do this or have I had a "Blonde Moment" and fouled up again? Admittedly it is probably the latter lol.

Thursday, 15 July 2010

Love in Horror Movies

I have so many Dvd's in my collection that I have to keep them in different "CD Wallet" type folders now, as I dont have the space to keep them all in their respective boxes. Every so often I run out of space in the folders and I am forced to re-organise and buy new folders for each subject, well this time it was the turn of my massive Horror folder, and it was a mammoth undertaking to say the least. In my horror folder the films are split into different subjects: "Religious Horror", "Supernatural Horror", "Haunted People", "Haunted Places", "Vampyre Movies", "Gothic Horror", "Slashers" "Creature Movies", "H.P Lovecraft Movies", "Clive Barker Movies" etc to name a few. In the end I decided that I would put all of my "Vampyre" and "Gothic Horror" Dvd's in a seperate folder, because along with "Supernatural" (ghosty type) horror these are the types of films that I have the most of. Or so I thought.  As I was sorting through and re-organising I began to realise that whilst I still have more "Supernatural" and Vampyre movies than any other type, still over the years I have collected quite a few films that at first glance could loosely be described as being the type where women are put in precarious life endangering situations, but somehow manage to survive against the odds. But then I noticed another, more subtle theme running through them all.  Below is a list of the films that I am talking about, see if you can tell what theme I am talking about:-

1) "Vacancy" Starring Kate Beckinsale and "the other" Wilson brother (i.e. NOT Owen - Sorry - his name escapes me for the moment)
2) "Last House on the Left" (2009)
3) "Eden Lake"
4) "Martyrs"
5) "Switchblade Romance"
6) "Mutants"
7) "Hide and Seek"
8) "Carrie"
9) "The Strangers"
10) "The Uninvited"
11) "Orphan"
12) "The Abducted"
13) "Misery"
14) "The Dark Half"
15) "The Bone Collector"
16 "The Descent" (Parts 1 and 2)

Here is what I saw:
1) "Vacancy" is about a married couple, who are experiencing problems within their marriage that will most likely lead to divorce, but after facing extreme adversity together they are reminded of their love for each other.
2) "Last House on the Left" is about a family, who love each other very much and are very close, but after their daughter is raped and left for dead, the parents are forced to do something that neither would even consider doing under "normal" circumstances.
3) "Eden Lake" is about a couple who love each other and who decide to go away for a weekend to a lake in the country, but when they get there they are hounded and harrassed  by a gang of local kids, who end up killing the boyfriend and chasing the woman through the woods. The woman has the option of leaving her boyfriend early in the film to go and get help, but loves him so much that she cannot bear to leave him with the group of kids.
4) "Martyrs" the first of my "Modern French Horror" films, is about two young girls who are in love with each other, the first having been abducted and held captive when she was young.  They set out to find the people who kept the first girl captive and when they do - they kill them.  However during the killing, the girlfriend of the abducted girl is captured and kept prisoner by an organisation that is trying to produce a modern-day "martyr", and they succeed in turning her into one.  An experience which ultimately she survives, but the founder of the secret organisation does not.
5) "Switchblade Romance" another "Modern French Horror" is about Marie and Alex, two students who go and stay at a remote famhouse owned by Alex's parents.  Whilst staying there Marie is woken by a noise from downstairs which turns out to be a murderer, who is gradually working his way through Alex 's family. Marie (who is seemingly in love with Alex) grabs Alex and the two attempt an escape in their car, but are promptly chased through the french countryside by the murderer in his van. Blood , guts and general mayhem ensues, with a rather unusual twist at the end of the film.
6) "Mutants" is the last of my "Modern French Horror" movies, and is about an Ambulance Driver and his paramedic girlfriend, who are trying to get across the french countryside which, (due to a virus) is now infested by zombie cannibals. The Ambulance Driver gets injured and his girlfriend loves him so much that she risks life and limb to get him to the nearest hospital.  She survives in the end but he does not.
7) "Hide and Seek" is about a little girl who has witnessed the suicide of her mother, she then invents an imaginary friend named "Charlie" and is then moved by her psychologist father to Upstate New York for a new start.  Throughout the course of the film the daughter's love for her father is very evident, but is marred somewhat by strange goings on and eventually murders which have been perpetrated by "Charlie" the imaginary friend, however it is obvious that the little girl is hiding a secret.  Eventually "Charlie" turns on the girl and tries to kill her.  By the end of the movie it becomes obvious that "Charlie" is actually the girls father who has suffered a psychological break after the suicide of his wife, but has no recollection of his actions, and that the little girl has known that it was her father all along. He eventually is killed but she survives.
8) "Carrie" is about a girl with psychic powers but who also has a loony christian mother. Carrie loves her mother, and in some way her mother also loves her, but her mother loves god more than she loves her daughter, and ultimately her distance from her daughter is one of the deciding factors contributing to the end of the movie.
9) "The Strangers" Starring the delectable Liv Tyler is about a couple who are in love but are experiencing commitment problems and are on the point of splitting up. They are then hounded by three unknown assailants whilst they are staying at a remote cabin owned by the boyfriends parents and throughout their terrible experience they discover they are better together than apart.
10) "The Uninvited" is a bit of an unusual one, it is about a girl who has witnessed the traumatic death of her Mother and who has returned to the family home, after a stint in an asylum, to discover that her beloved father is marrying her mothers nurse. Throughout the film she relys heavily on her elder sister as it seems to her that her father's love is being given now to his fiancee instead of her.  There is also a nice little twist at the end of this one.
11) "Orphan" Is ostensibly about an orphaned little girl who goes to live with a new family, craving their love, almost to the point of obsession. Soon things start to go very very wrong. People start to get hurt, or worse whenever the "orphan" feels that they are getting in the way of her new parents love and affection for her. Again a really nice little twist at the end of this one also.
12) "The Abducted" Is about a guy who abducts a woman having followed her around for weeks, becoming more and more obsessed with her.
13) "Misery" Starring the fabulous Kathy Bates, is about a woman who is the "No 1 fan" of an american author who is then injured in a car crash in the snow near to her house. She takes the author in and begins to nurse him back to health, but pretty soon it becomes obvious that she is completely obsessed with him, eventually using drugs to hold him captive so that he can re-write his last novel just for her. It can only end badly!
14) "The Dark Half" Another Stephen King outing - this time about a guy who is a horror writer. This guy is a family man, with a wife who loves him very much, but unfortunately his fictional alter-ego begins to take over. Murder and madness duly ensue, but it is only the love that he has for his wife, and vice versa, that saves him.
15) "The Bone Collector" Starring Angelina Jolie and Denzel Washington, is about a forensic cop, paralysed and bed-bound and his female assistant who through her love for him and his work eventually finds a killer, following Denzel's instructions over a headset.
16) "The Descent (Parts 1 + 2)" is about a group of woman pot-holers most of whom are friends and who have known each other previously. However two of the main characters have a little issue with each other in that one has had an affair with the other's boyfriend. The film centres around how their rivalry eventually leads to them all being stranded in a cave which is inhabited by something dreadful and deadly lurking in the dark. Only one woman survives long enough to escape completely, and the second film is about her having to return to the cave system to look for any survivors.

I think that you can argue that obsession is a form of love.  The obsessed person is in love with who they think the object of their affection is, whether they are correct about that or not, and also they are in love with the idea of being in love with that person.

So more than anything else these films are about love and obsession, and how both things can force a person (or persons) into a life threatening situation, but equally love is also what saves them in the end.

There you have it, you can even find Love and Obsession in horror movies - Who Knew? lol.

And the alternative is.......Body Farms

Right, touchy subject I know - but bear with me.

I was thinking about what will happen when I die - just my previously mentioned "gothic tendencies" shining through again, so dont panic (mum)....(lols pmsl).

Anyway - my imagination took flight, no surprises there, and I was trying to decide whether or not I wanted a ceremony (funeral) or a headstone, or what would be on my epitaph etc. I suddenly realised just how egotistical and downright selfish I was being.  When you think about it a funeral or a gravesite are really only for the people who have been left behind, a way to help them with the grieving process, so really they are the people who should plan my funeral and decide what is on my headstone, not me. But then I got to thinking what if there was a better way to help them than that? An alternative to a funeral and a grave that would mean so much more to them and be a better epitaph to who I have been in life?
So I decided that these were my options:

1) CREMATION - Too much ick when Tiddles knocks the urn all over the front room carpet, also I dont want my loved ones last abiding memory of me to be that I refused to budge out of a shag (pile) lol. Unless of course its for the proper (filthy) reason, which could well be true, however that is a topic for a different kind of blog entirely.

2) Being shot into Space - If there is ANYTHING that screams "Look at me!! Look at what an INDIVIDUAL I am!!" THAT has got to be it - exactly how egomaniacal do you have to be to opt for this one? Also it is fantastically hard to get someone shot into space (dead or otherwise) and even more expensive.  So, faced with the prospect of months of red tape and years of debt, Mk1 offspring will undoubtedly bury me regardless, and I cant say I blame him - I would do the same.

3) Leaving my body to Medical Science - There are a couple of problems with that. Firstly I happen to think that "medical science" has experimented enough on my body whilst I am still alive. Secondly, well there are some very strange people out there, and truthfully I wont care what actually happens to my body after I am dead, but still I will be damned if I am going to give some spotty, furtive little pervert the satisfaction. I wouldnt do it while I am alive so why should I do it after I am dead?

This then left me with the fourth and final option:

BODY FARM.  This is where I get a little more serious.

I was researching what body - farms actually do. Apparently they put the bodies that have been donated to them in different murder situations. So for instance, one body might be left out in the field to rot in open air, another might be set on fire and put in a dumpster, another may be buried in a shallow grave etc. They do this so that they can work out how long that body has to be in that situation before it goes through the various stages of decomposition. This then helps people like the Police, or Forensic Scientists work out how long a body has been left at a homicide scene, and this in turn helps them to find the killer.

I Love that. I love the idea that maybe my death would be able to help the family of a murder victim. That I could continue to assist humanity in some way, even after I have died.  I think this would be a better epitaph to who I am, and what I have stood for in life, than a 6 foot patch of earth and a couple of lines knocked into a block of granite. I think that most people would be a little too "grossed out" at the thought of being left in a field etc, but the point is this: I am only going to be left to molder in a grave, or be burned in cremation anyway, so why not molder in a field or be burned in a dumpster instead and be able to help someone as well?

Just a thought.

Saturday, 26 June 2010

Suicide Solution?

I used to think that the only reason why suicide is a bad thing to do, is because of how it will hurt the people around us at the time. Friends, family, loved ones, people that we care for and who care for us left devestated by our premature departure. Over the years however I have come to understand that it is also about the people we haven't met yet.......

I think most people now accept that we are here on earth for a reason, that we are here to learn.  The reason why we are here to learn is perhaps a little more elusive, but that we are here to learn has become more and more accepted in the Universal Consciousness.  If that is true, then it is also true that we not only learn these lessons from each other, but we teach them to each other as well. A lot of people also accept that to die having not learned all of the lessons that you are supposed to learn in this lifetime, (or as many spiritual practitioners call it: "dieing with Unfinished Business"), is a BAD thing to do, and may possibly lead to us coming back in another lifetime, and having to do it all over again.

SO, what if there is a person, that you haven't met yet, that is sometime in your future, who is pre-destined to learn a valuable life lesson from you? BUT by the time it comes around to that point in the future, you are no longer around, having killed yourself before then?  What happens to that person you haven't met yet? How do THEY learn the lesson that YOU were supposed to teach them?  Perhaps it is true that they may be able to learn part of that lesson from someone else, but surely if it was pre-destined that they were to learn that lesson from you, then they cannot even hope to learn as much from someone who isn't you. This means that by the time they die, they will not have learned everything that they were supposed to learn. THEY will also die with "Unfinished Business". And here is something else: What if not being able to learn that lesson from you causes them to kill themselves prematurely as well? Then what if there is a person in their future, who was supposed to learn a lesson from them, that cannot now be learned? And so on, and so on, and so on..........  It would seem then, that you killing yourself now, at least has the potential to alter the future for all eternity, and not necessarily for the better of legions more people than just yourself.  Is this then the real reason why suicide is considered to be so selfish?

My final question is this: If by killing yourself, which in many religions around the world is a sin anyway, you have caused someone else to die with unfinished business, possibly meaning that they will have to come back and do it all again, when they may not have had to do that if only you had stuck around, or possibly meaning that they also kill themselves early and are no longer around to teach someone else, then what are the spiritual rammifications for yourself, for your own soul? Could this be the main reason that killing yourself is considered to be such a major sin? Maybe then it is not so much about what you do to just your own soul, as what you have done to potentially countless other peoples' souls as well?

Download 2010 - Ruined!

Mk1 Offspring and I were so looking forward to the Download Festival this year.  Everything was meticulously planned in advance, not just by myself, but also by a really caring friend of mine who was attending the festival as well, and who remembered things such as not just myself having a (previously) broken back, but also MK1 Offspring being a diabetic (type 1-insulin dependant) and also having Asperger Syndrome and not being able to cope with large crowds so well.  So between the two of us, we made sure that the people who were organising Download this year were given (on several occasions) a full list of mine and Mk1 Offsprings "Challenges" - ALL of which they said they could, and would, accommodate.

Unfortunately this did not happen - on a LARGE scale.

As a result, Mk1 Offspring and I spent all of the festival in really bad pain and/or distress, we were forced to miss most of the groups that we had gone to see, and Download 2010 was absolutely ruined for us.  I have sought advice on the subject and I have contacted the company concerned (who admitted what they did to us), requesting that they reimburse to me any and all monies paid to them for the Festival, politely informing them that they had 5 days in which to issue me with a hopefully favourable reply to my request, after which time I would have no other option but to pursue the matter further. I have not asked for further compensation than simply the monies that I paid to them, and yet they still have not replied. Perhaps they are waiting to see if I WILL take the matter further. Given what they did to myself and my son, this would be a foolish course of action for them to take.

I get the feeling that it might be unwise for me to comment further at this stage, and detail exactly what they subjected us to as I am not certain, but there may be legal rammifications if I did so, but suffice to say in many ways My son and I wish that Download had not happened.

Through perseverance and sheer strength of will, we did manage to glean some small amount of enjoyment from the festival, and I will blog about this once our photos have been developed and uploaded.

Thursday, 24 June 2010

Ordinary People, Blogs, and Twitter

I watched an actor on a T.V chat show recently who was full of his own self importance. I dont normally have anything to do with chat shows as generally I have found they dont interest me much, but MK1 Offspring and I had been watching a DVD and the T.V was unusually now on in the background while I was doing something else. The actor asked the host who was interviewing him the following question: "Why do ordinary people feel the need to have blogs and Twitter accounts? It's not as if they have anything worth saying. What I mean is, it's not as if anyone wants to hear that they had a bacon sandwich for breakfast that morning."  O.K, I can't really argue with the "bacon sandwich" bit, even I think thats a bit ludicrous, but what about the rest of it?  This person was so "famous" himself that I dont even know who he was. Not surprising maybe, coming from someone who doesn't often have the time to watch T.V, but even I am aware of who the truly famous people are. I guess there is "famous" and then there is FAMOUS.

How egocentric do you have to be to even think that only famous people have anything worth saying, or that is worth sharing with others who may be interested? Maybe the non famous person has other non famous friends who are interested in what they have done that day, and not living the celebrity lifestyle themselves, they dont necessarily expect their friend to have climbed Kilimanjaro, or starred in a new film for example.  The actor concerned also mentioned FaceBook and asked "Why dont these people just talk to their friends instead".  Well because some of us work stupidly long hours virtually EVERY week of the year, and some of us aren't always able to get out to meet our friends whenever we want to sweetie, thats why.  Also if you have been working all day and especially if you have children but dont have a fleet of nannies and staff at your beck and call, you dont always have the time and energy to spend even an hour on the telephone to your friends at the end of the day.  For most people the decision between spending an hour soaking in the bath, and spending an hour on the phone, listening to even their best friend talking about the new living room curtains they have just bought in IKEA, is actually a fairly simple one. FaceBook is not just for shut in's, sex addicts and perverts - it is mostly used by "ordinary" people who want to keep in touch with their friends, who want to make sure that their friends dont think that they have been forgotton in the midst of an increasingly busy life, and who ultimately do want to know about the new living room curtains, but who also want to take their rest when they need it and telephone their friends when they have the energy and enthusiam to do so.

As for Blogs?  I only started this blog because last year I became really pretty ill and I suddenly realised that having never written a book, I had nothing to leave behind for my son. I have been lucky enough to lead an extraordinary life, full of truly valuable life experiences, and if it wasn't for this blog they all could have been easily lost to my son forever. I am not a famous person, I do not have the benefit of having any part of my life documented by anyone other than myself. Of course I can and do tell my son about my life, but soon his life will become so full that he is likely to forget a lot of what I tell him, that is just the way it goes. I know that I have unfortunately forgotton an awful lot of the wonderful, insightful and valuable stories my grandparents told me, and in my absence, whenever that comes, I dont want the same thing to happen to my son.  I wouldn't know how to go about having a book published, and as a non famous person, I probably wouldnt be given the opportunity to do so even if I did know how, so this blog was the most immediate answer at a time when time itself seemed to be of the essence, and that is a good enough reason for me - even though I am not famous.

Miss Meehan's Preferred Afternoon Tipple.

It is a beautiful day...........

I was sitting in Danson Park multi tasking, well MY version of multi tasking anyway. The sun was out, and I was hiding from it under an umberella, swearing at my Blackberry for refusing to log onto the internet, writing this, reading a book ("Beautiful Creatures" by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl - this is about as close as I will ever get to reading a "Romance Novel". It is a really enjoyable book so please read it if you get the chance), waiting for MK1 Offspring to come out of school and generally enjoying the peace and scenery around the Boathouse and boating lake here. The only disturbance of the peace has been the occasional call of "BLT and a Tuna Melt......." from the woman behind the refreshment stand counter. I have to say that the peace is welcome at the moment, as due to our appalling treatment at the Download Festival, the last couple of weeks or so have been a bit fraught. So today has been lovely. Until that is, the ground started an almost imperceptible shudder under my feet, and there was a disconcerting noise coming from somewhere in the distance, which seemed to be getting nearer........

Suddenly a large group of school kids came crashing through the hedgerow, braying like Wildebeest (or whatever it is that Wildebeest do), and immediately headed for the Boathouse next to us.  The lady in the refreshment stand sprang into action by rushing out and doing her best to steady the tables with her hands (and feet), and trying to right the now toppling over umberellas with rapidly alternating elbows. She had obviously had some practice at this and would, I suspect, do very well in the Harrods New Year Sale. Either that or a Rugby Scrum.  In the midst of all this mayhem came a (male) shout; "Andre, Andre - ask Miss Meehan what she want's to drink".  Then another, younger, male voice shouted; "Miss, Miss, whadya wanna drink?"  Trailing some way behind the group was a red faced, clearly shell shocked and gasping woman, who was carrying a clipboard that had papers falling off it everywhere, and who had a whistle in her mouth that she inadvertently blew everytime she gasped a breath.  She could barely speak above a whisper, and still had the whistle in her mouth.  "Sir, Sir, Miss says she don't 'ave a drink".  "I KNOW that - what does she WANT to drink?" Andre huffed.  "Miss, whadya WANNA drink?" (more blowing on the whistle from Miss Meehan), "Sir - she jus' says she don't 'ave one".  "Sir" was in the middle of raising his eyes to the sky, when the humongous din that had been eminating from deep within the bowels of the boathouse rapidly ceased........ but only after there was a really loud crash. Clearly canoes and assorted boating paraphernalia had fallen from the stands, and the silence now indicated that potentially someone was hurt.  "Sir" forgot all about poor Miss Meehan's cuppa and darted off in the direction of the offending crash in a flurry of "not so much under his breath" muttered swearwords, white shorts that were WAAAY too tight to be decent, (and which were oddly teamed with a warm fleece jacket which had been accessorised with another whistle,) and really bad cheap aftershave.

Enough was enough. I rapidly discovered that it is almost impossible to type whilst running away in a blur of black lace, with a mobile phone in one hand, and a hastily scooped up mess of bags, tea, book and an egg sandwich on a paper plate in the other.

Poem: "The Distance"

I am in this place
Waiting for you,
Finally I am here
And you are here too.

We are seperated by feet
Just a distance it seems,
Both waiting in the dark
For the emergence of Dreams.

There is nothing for it
But to leap and to shout,
So you can see we are here
And turn right about.

But I know that wont happen
You busy, busy man,
So I'll leap about anyway
And do what I can.

Until one day soon I'll stop
Dreams shattered in Hope,
And I'll leap right away
Just like an Antelope!

(Bloody Hell - that last line was a desperate grasp for a rhyme, *cue unabashed sniggering at self* he he he. But Hell, poetry is meant to reflect life, which doesn't always go according to plan. Life isn't perfect, so why should poetry be?)

Copyright by Sami-Jane Harris. 2010. All rights reserved

Wednesday, 9 June 2010

Download 2010

Finally everything is sorted - Hotel is booked, transport is arranged, Guest Area Passes are sorted (wristbands to be picked up at Donington)  and now, after much too-ing and fro-ing (and an awful lot of worry) our Arena tickets are ready to be picked up at Donington as well (thank you for the help with butt-kicking LiveNation - you know who you are.x)

Yep - its that time again - Mk1 Offspring and I are off to Download 2010 and I am already hyper-ventilating, Mk1 Offspring is pretending to be cool about the whole thing, but is actually just as excited as I am. HIM + Airbourne + AC/DC + Aerosmith + Slayer = cant wait cant wait cant wait.

Regarding Slayer - it will be nice to finally actually see them at Download. I first attended Donington with my ex hubbie in '92 when it was still the Monsters Of Rock festival (those were the days - I wonder if the crowd still chuck bottles of pee around? - Sincerely hope not.) Anyway - ex hubbie and I had been out on the tiles for a couple of nights prior to Donington 92 and as we had to get the coach from the station at 08.00 on the Saturday morning, we didnt see the point in going to bed, so we stayed up - drinking. After finally persuading the coach driver to let us on the coach we arrived at Donington Park at around 10.45, which was far too early as the proceedings didnt start back then until about 2ish. So after milling around the stalls for a while we decided to go and find our "pitch" for the day on the field infront of the stage (only one in those days), when ex hubbie suddenly announced "Oh look - there's the beer tent". Ahem - famous last words. I am told the line up went like this: The Almighty were up first, then Slayer, Thunder, Skid Row, W.A.S.P and finally Iron Maiden headlined. I vaguely remember The Almighty starting - sort of, my ex hubbie woke me up just in time to see Slayer heading back off stage - having already performed their set, and I didnt remember that Thunder were there at all until a couple of months ago when I checked an old Donington site and had to ring ex hubbie to confirm! I was truly pissed off at myself about Slayer as they were one of the groups that I went there to see - so since I have been taking a break from drinking since 2004 I am really looking forward to actually seeing them this time. As for the rest - Sebastian Bach fell on his butt, Blackie had another chest infection and Iron Maiden performed their "Fear of the Dark" set and stormed the place!

Unfortunately, by the end of the day our beleagured coach driver had had enough of being harrassed by leather and stud clad inebriates so he refused to let us back on the coach, meaning that we spent the night sleeping in a bin bag in a more than damp field - and I had forgotton my inhalers. So by the time we eventually made it home I arrived with a rather nasty case of severe bronchitis - sorry mum!  This time things are a little different, lol - Mk1 Offspring and I are booked into a nice hotel in Derby for 4 nights, we have Guest Area Passes due to my inability (and frankly unwillingness) to sit in a damp field in the pissing rain with 100,000 inebriates anymore - and I have already packed enough inhalers to out stock an Asthma Awareness Summer Camp.

Here's to Monst Download 2010!

Wednesday, 2 June 2010

Smoking??.....Hmmmm.

Ok, so I am not going to say that I have given up smoking, largely because I "gave up" smoking last year for two months, vowing NEVER to smoke another cigarette again. Lo and behold, as soon as real stress reared its ugly head - out came the Marlboros.

Lesson well and truly learned.

SO - just the same as I did with the drinking, this time I am just not smoking for the moment....and so far, it seems to be going pretty well.

Monday, 31 May 2010

On the Precipice - Of Love??

Many, many years ago now I was involved in a conversation with a friend who, sadly, I no longer see.  I remember telling her I thought that at the end of all things, when by our own hands the Human Race is standing on the edge of extinction, the only thing that will save us, is Love.

A long time has passed since then, and my life has been....well, lets just say "eventful".

Nowdays, when I look at what is happening in and to the world around me, I have come to the conclusion that for whatever reason, the end of humanity seems to be approaching much faster than I ever thought it would. Family, Community, Compassion, Dignity - all the things which once held us together as a race, which made us whole - are either going or have gone completely. Sometimes it seems that we are no longer a RACE of Humans at all , instead we are largely a group of singular Nomads, sailing backwards and forwards across this planet with nothing to achor ourselves to anymore. BUT through it all, I still believe as I once did, so long ago.

SO, if you are a person who still retains the capacity for love, then for pity's sake USE IT!  Use it without fear of recrimination or rebuttal. Put every ounce of Love you have out into the Universe and use it for everything you think it is worth, because guys Love is really the only thing that we have left to anchor onto, and sadly, I get the impression that we have never needed it more.

For my part - I wish Love and Peace to you all. xx

Copyright by Sami-Jane Harris. 2010. All rights reserved.

Sunday, 23 May 2010

Poem: "WARNING: More perfect than 9"

I have this friend.....
He is waiting for love sublime,
So he rates the women he meets
And none reaches higher than 9.

He searches all nooks and crannies
Pubs and clubs and bars,
Applying his rule to each Juliet,
And never getting that far.

Some have perfect hair,
Others, a waistline to be adored,
But then he looks a little closer
And his dream is suddenly floored.

For in this world he is waiting for perfect
A Juliet higher than 9,
But this world we are in was never perfect
So he will be waiting for a very long time.

Copyright by Sami-Jane Harris. 2010. All rights reserved.

Thursday, 20 May 2010

Poem: The Art Of Existence

My life is sketched in Colours
Myriad and Strange,
Wonderful and Beautiful
Colourful and Plain.

Each day is a different Entity
A lifetime pulsing of it's own,
A collection of experiences,
A single portrait in life's Tome.

At times it is a bright strange butterfly
Flitting between each solar day,
At others a three legged Panther
Crawling along the way.

There are sketches in the book
More horrific than the rest,
Tho' some scenes are more peaceful
But through it all I'm blessed,

With chromatic Eidetic Memory:
I choose to paint all the hues,
From scarlet, passionate reds
To melancholy blues.

Copyright by Sami-Jane Harris. 2010. All rights reserved.

Tuesday, 18 May 2010

Poem: "The Beauty of a Woman".

I received this poem in an email that I was sent today and I just had to share it - enjoy!


The beauty of a woman is not in the clothes she wears,

the figure she carries, or the way she combs her hair.

The beauty of a woman must be seen from in her eyes,

Because that is the doorway to her heart,

The place where love resides.

The beauty of a woman is not in a facial mole,

But true beauty in a woman is reflected in her soul..

It is the caring that she lovingly gives, the passion that she shows,

And the beauty of a woman with passing years only grows!

Sunday, 16 May 2010

Ronnie James Dio

My Son has just called me - Ronnie James Dio died today. First Peter Steele and now Ronnie within a month of each other.....enough is enough.

I'm not an idiot - I know that people die, but why does it have to be the ones that we need the most down here? This world is turning to shit, and faster now than anyone can do anything about it, so we need all the good guys that we can get to keep. The ones that make being in this shit hole just that little bit easier to bear, the ones who are influential, you could even say the ones who help to keep on the straight and narrow the people who might easily go off the rails more than most, the lonely, the outcast - the people who desperately need a place to belong but who can't gain admission anywhere else, and people like Peter Steele, like Ronnie James Dio and the ones who got taken before them gave the world that. And we have to lose them? Now? It doesn't make any sense.

Thursday, 13 May 2010

Ageist Assumptions are FUBAR!!

I am annoyed. Actually I am really pissed off. Actually perhaps I am more disappointed than I am pissed off, but I am still annoyed. And incredulous. Let me explain.....

OK, so I was in the supermarket with Mk1 Offspring, in the bread aisle to be more precise, when I bumped into Brian, the night time shelf stacker that we have got to know quite well over the last couple of years. Well, as well as you can get to know night time shelf stackers anyway. Night time shelf stackers are usually a, err, I think the polite term is "singular breed" and "getting to know" them is usually best confined to a) the store only, and b) a few pleasantries, with as little actual personal information imparted as possible. This is the situation with Brian the only just 20 year old, who stacks the bread aisle, who is also gay.... and a confirmed bitch.  He knows that I have sustained a back injury at some time and that my son and I live on our own, but by and large that is pretty much all he actually knows, despite his frequent attempts to ferret more information out of me.  Anyway there I was; minding my own business, listening to Cradle of Filth on my MP3...obviously. (I live for the day that they play C.O.F and the like over the P.A system to the purple rinsers in Asda rofl),  and I was reaching for a loaf of multigrain Danish, when from behind, and over the lyrics "....Adorable creatures, Temptation, With unacceptable features...." I suddenly heard this comment:  "I feel sorry for you."

I spun around to find Brian smirking at me intently with a pack of  pink iced buns in his hand, and standing not 3 feet away from me. As there was no-one else in the aisle it was a fairly safe bet that the offending comment had come from him. I momentarily toyed with the idea of asking him if he knew how gay he really looked with pink iced buns in one hand and the other planted firmly on his hip, but not wishing to engage in a full on "bitch off" with a gay bloke I instead settled for the word  "Pardon?".  "I. feel. sorry. for. you." came the reply.  I am not sure what annoyed me the most at this point - that he felt sorry for me for some reason, or that he slowly puncutated his remark, clearly at the only speed he thought I would be able to cope with. "Why..Would..You..Do..That?" I pointedly said this to him slower than he had spoken to me, after all - two can play at that game, but in the grand tradition of night time shelf stackers he failed to notice that I was countering his bitchiness with taking the piss and pressed on regardless.  "Well" he said smirking at me again, "What I mean is; you are a cripple right, and you have a son who has...what do you call them...challenges, and you dont have a man to help you, and you are not getting any younger, I mean, you must wish that you could go back in time and change a few things?" ("Stage Direction": Stare at him wide eyed and open mouthed, blink twice). "What I mean is you must wish sometimes that you were a teenager again, so that maybe you didn't do whatever it was that caused you to be a cripple, and that if you had known then what you know now..... then maybe you would have left off having your son......."  He didnt get any further than that. I stood there with my mouth open for another couple of seconds, while my apparently very old, crippled, feeble brain grappled with everything he had just grossly insulted me with, and then I let him have it:...."Brian...Have you got Aspergers, or ADD??? Did you forget to take your Ritalin this morning??? Or are you just being BLOODY RUDE!!???" He stood rooted to the spot - apparently vitriol from a person other than himself actually shocks him, so I took time out of my busy bread buying and now shelf stacker battering schedule to explain the following points to him, quickly, concisely, and non too quietly:

"Listen up Sundance, for your information I LOVE being the age I am now and I wouldn't be a teenager again if you paid me all the money in the world. Aside from the fact that I wasn't exactly the most popular teen this side of "Napoleon Dynamite" I love my age because of all the 'mores'"  He looked confused so I was compelled to explain: "Yes my little misogynistic melanoma - 'mores': I have more wisdom, more experience, more creativity, more time on my hands to exercise that creativity and to the point where I can actually make a living out of it, instead of having to stack shelves on the graveyard shift. Thanks to my son and his "challenges" I have more patience than I ever had before, and despite the fact that I am divorced and I bring my son up on my own, especially financially, I have more money than I have ever had in my life, if you want to bring it down to that level, and at your age I suspect you probably do. I have seen more, done more, felt more, experienced more, BUT, on top of, and because of all of that, I have the ultimate "more": I have more to offer. To my family, to my friends, to the people who have known me for years, and the people I haven't met yet, to the world. Tell me Brian, what could I have possibly offered the world when I was your age? Apart from another shed load of post teenage angst, and yet another unwanted pregnancy, because believe me hun, that is pretty much the extent of your options when it comes to being able to offer anything when you are only just out of your teens. I have climbed the Great Pyramid on the Giza Plateau and watched a red sun setting behind the Sphinx, with Cairo in the distance as a backdrop. I have been chased around the streets of Alexandria by a leper, who taught me one of the most valuable lessons in humanity I have ever learned, I have climbed Mount Olympus to the first ever Olympic Stadium at the top, and stood in the starting blocks and felt the hairs rise on the back of my neck with the sense of competition that is still there, even now. I have eaten my lunch with the silent monks in the Gardens of Gethsemene. I have walked the Way of the Cross and stood on the spot where Jesus dropped it. I have climbed Calvary and been silent in the place where Jesus Christ died, and stood in the Garden Tomb where he was buried. I have been beaten, crippled, driven to the edge of insanity, and defeated, but then each time, I have stood on my own two feet again to set a good example to my son. I can offer all of this, what about you? I might be the age I am, a cripple, and in pain most of the time, BUT still I am having the time of my life. So you can take your "sympathy" and......." I thought better of that last statement.... "Give it to someone who actually needs it".  With that I left Brian open mouthed and stalked off to find Mk1 Offspring, who was wisely hiding in the fruit and veg section. I know he was hiding because he is a teenager and I cant normally drag him in there.

Please understand - I don't ever normally brag about the things I have done with my life, bragging is not something that appeals to me at all and unless there are exceptional circumstances I dont usually like it when others do it either. I just worried about what would happen if Brian had said those things to someone who might have taken it differently, badly even. I have friends who regularly and fervently wish that they were teenagers again, and I cant understand it. I always tell anyone who asks that I have no regrets, that I refuse to regret and usually I get a look that tells me they think I am a sociopath, but I am not. Aside from anything else it is a pointless exercise - you cant get back past years so why waste time on wishing you could? I think it is much better to learn from past mistakes and make good the time that you have from now on instead, and that is something you can do at any age. I know why my friends wish they were teenagers and mostly it has something to do with a grey hair here, a wrinkle there, but when I look back on everything I have done so far it seems to me that the odd line and wrinkle is a small price to pay for such a life.

Copyright by Sami-Jane Harris. 2010. All rights reserved.

Sunday, 9 May 2010

Favourite Love, Music and Life Quotes.

Here are some of my favourite quotes about my favourite subjects, Love Music and Life; I hope you enjoy and are inspired by them also:

LOVE QUOTES AND SAYINGS:


I have been astonished that men

could die martyrs for their religion

I have shudder'd at it.

I shudder no more.

I could be martyr'd for my religion

Love is my religion

And I could die for that.

I could die for you.

~ John Keats~



You come to love not by finding the perfect person, but by seeing an imperfect person perfectly.

~ Sam Keen~



Love me without fear

Trust me without questioning

Need me without demanding

Want me without restrictions

Accept me without change

Desire me without inhibitions

For a love so free ...

Will never fly away.


~ Dick Sutphen~



I have loved to the point of madness,

That which is called madness,

That which to me,

Is the only sensible way to love.


~F. Sagan~



It is best to love wisely, no doubt;

but to love foolishly is better than

not to be able to love at all.


~William Thackeray~



Love is much like a wild rose,

beautiful and calm,

but willing to draw blood

in its defense.


~ Mark Overby~



Love works in miracles every day: such as weakening the strong, and stretching the weak; making fools of the wise, and wise men of fools; favouring the passions, destroying reason, and in a word, turning everything topsy-turvy.


~ Marguerite De Valoi~



Romantic love is an illusion. Most of us

discover this truth at the end of a love

affair or else when the sweet emotions

of love lead us into marriage

and then turn down their flames.


~Thomas Moore~



There is more hunger for love and appreciation in this world than for bread.


~ Mother Teresa~



He who has never experienced hurt,

cannot experience true love.

~ Tristan J. Leo~



To fear love is to fear life,

and those who fear life are already three parts dead.


~Bertrand Russell, Earl Russell~



(Sorry, but this next quote amuses, Rofl:)


"Constant togetherness is fine—but

only for Siamese twins."

~ Victoria Billings~



Other men said they have seen angels,

But I have seen thee

And thou art enough.


~ G Moore~



To love a person is to learn the song

That is in the heart,

And to sing it to them

When they have forgotten.

~ Unknown~



Your voice makes me tremble inside

And your smile is an invitation

For imagination gone wild.


~ Unknown~



Love is like a friendship caught on fire.

In the beginning a flame, very pretty,

Often hot and fierce,

But still only light and flickering

As love grows older,

Our hearts mature

And our love becomes as coals,

Deep-burning and unquenchable.


~ Bruce Lee~



MUSIC QUOTES AND SAYINGS:

Music is the only language the whole world speaks, for within it soul speaks to soul.

~Unknown~


Music washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life.


~Red Auerbach~



Talking about music is like skywriting in Braille.


~ Brian Weiland~



If music be the food of love, play on.


~Shakespeare~



Heard melodies are sweet, but those unheard are sweeter.


~John Keats~



Music, the greatest good that mortals know, And all of heaven we have below.


~Joseph Addison~



Nothing separates the generations more than music. By the time a child is eight or nine, he has developed a passion for his own music that is even stronger than his passions for procrastination and weird clothes.


~Bill Cosby~



Music should strike fire from the heart of man, and bring tears from the eyes of woman.

~Ludwig Van Beethoven~


A song will outlive all sermons in the memory.


~Henry Giles~



Don't play what's there, play what's not there.


~Miles Davis~



I have no pleasure in any man who despises music. It is no invention of ours: it is a gift of God. I place it next to theology. Satan hates music: he knows how it drives the evil spirit out of us.


~Martin Luther~



Music expresses that which cannot be said and on which it is impossible to be silent.


~Victor Hugo~



LIFE QUOTES:

I like living. I have sometimes been wildly, despairingly, acutely miserable, racked with sorrow, but through it all I still know quite certainly that just to be alive is a grand thing.


~Agatha Christie~


You are responsible for your life. You can't keep blaming

somebody else for your dysfunction. Life is really about

moving on.


~ Oprah Winfrey~



Hanging onto resentment is letting someone you despise

live rent-free in your head.
 
~ Ann Landers~

Tuesday, 20 April 2010

New Heartagram.com Blog

Hi all just to let you know that I have started a new blog over on http://www.heartagram.com/, which is the foremost HIM site.  At the moment all I have done is post a few things that I have already posted on here, but I will include some new posts there as and when (actually 'if') I get the time so please do check it out if you have the time. I am listed under Sami-Jane in the "Fan Blogs" section.  Hope to see you all there.

Sunday, 18 April 2010

Prose: Polidori's Fri(end).

Victorian canvases are
Sewn into my mind,
Today, as every day, you
Are tattooed on every one.

I draw near to reach
Out to Only You,
But your Cheshire Smile
Fades into the mist.

All that is left behind are the
Eyes on Your Pretty Face....
Haunting my present,
Taunting my future.

Time is of the essence,
But you cannot see it,
It is coasting in on empty
But you cannot feel it.

You are as a ghost to me,
Insubstantial outside of the canvases,
And yet I am tempted by
Our future Existential.

In the South, our eyes locked through a song,
And I was instantly Scared to Death
Of a future existence
Here Without You.

Dangerous Glitter invades my mind
And I am sustained by dreams
Of  Rat Salad,
So climb my tower and Join Me.

Polidori's Fri(end), Canto 1, Verse 1, Line 1,
The beginning: Breathe it in and speak it out for me.
Then hear my heart's excesses, confusion and Hope
Singing back to you across the Void.

Copyright by Sami-Jane Harris. 2010. All rights reserved.

Petrus T Ratajczyk R.I.P

Bloody Kisses (a death in the family).

Today is a very "black" day indeed. I was feeling a little blue anyway and now I have just found out that Petrus, aka Peter Steele, the lead singer, bassist, main composer and more than enigmatically influential frontman of Type O Negative has died of heart failure aged only 48.  He once said "Everything Dies" and it would seem that he was right. I have said on here before that I think he was one of the bravest men alive, even if only for somehow staying alive in a world that he was so often completely at odds with, and even tried to leave on a couple of occasions.  The cause of his heart failure has yet to be released at the time of writing this, but I think it would be naive to think that it may not at least have had something to do with his well documented and various efforts at "self medicating" in order to escape the devestating effects of the world around us.

I can only hope and pray that my other idols will heed the final warning that Peter has left by way of his untimely death, because as a fan it is a desperate thing to watch people that you love and respect so much go through these things, especially when you have to witness it knowing that there is nothing you can do to help them. You feel so hopeless, so ineffectual, useless even. You want to help them so much in the same way that they have helped you over the years, but instead you have to sit back and watch them die. Everytime you hope against hope that it will be the last, knowing deep in your heart that it probably wont be, and that knowledge is black and suffocating, and now this dreadful thing has happened once again. I suppose it would be easier to walk away, to not care anymore. I can only speak personally here, but I find not caring is an impossible thing to do, because when somebody's music in particular has reached you in ways which even friends well meaning words cannot, it is impossible not to care about the person who has broken through your barriers and touched your soul.

I am not going to wax lyrical about Peter's phenomenal song writing capabilities, or even on what kind of man I thought he was, there are plenty of professional journalists out there who will be clamouring I suspect to do such a thing. Perhaps then you will permit me to tell you how his music affected me and how I now feel; Today I feel a little bit more alone in this world than yesterday, Peter is dead and along with him has died a voice of reason, strength and comfort. I did not know Peter personally but I did know his songs, his lyrics, and I find that I am incapable of understanding why people like Peter have to leave us, while other, truly digusting individuals remain here.  Maybe this is Hell afterall? Or at least a taste of it.  Before I was introduced to HIM, Type 'O' were always one of the few groups that I have turned to when the world gets too crazy to handle, when I need an injection of clarity and more importantly sanity. Rarely now, but still sometimes I sit on the bus, or more often in the park, surrounded by bright lights and loud, bright people and suddenly I need sanctuary. So I do what I have always done, reach for my MP3 (or back in the day my "Walkman") and search for HIM latterly, but before them it has always been The Damned, The Cult, Sisters of Mercy and "Type O Negative", I find "Everything Dies" or "Anasthesia" or "Bloody Kisses (a death in the family)", press play and breath a sigh of relief as the flourescent world just melts away, if only for a few minutes. Doing this has saved my sanity more than once. I just tried to listen to Bloody Kisses and promptly burst into tears, I hope I dont do that in public. I fell in love with Peter's humour, the way that he would poke fun at what he (and we) saw in the world, it was a method of songwriting that I appreciated more and more as the years rolled by, as I got older, and as I began to realise that life is not the dreamland that we are promised as children by well meaning parents, and so it is inconceivable, even frightening that we will no longer hear any new musical insights and comforts from this amazing man.  I'm not sure that I understand what God was thinking on this one as it seems to me that what the world needs right now are more men like Peter, not less of them. My thoughts and heartfelt wishes are with his family, friends and all the fans around the world who are affected by this awful news.  From my heart I hope and pray that you are finally at peace Peter, and that you now truly understand all that you meant to us.  I hope that we can at least give you that by way of some kind of thanks for everything you did, and everything your songs will continue to do.  I have always tried to see something good in situations like this, and so in the days and weeks to come I will try to hold on to this one thing: "Everyone (We) Love Is Dead", but your songs are immortal, they will go on speaking when for reasons known only to yourself at the moment, you could not. x

Please check out my video bar at the bottom of this page to see a few Type O Negative videos. Just settle over the bar and wait for Type O's videos to come around (there are quite a few different artists on there so you might have to wait a little while but I promise you it is worth it.)



Copyright by Sami-Jane Harris. 2010. All rights reserved

Monday, 29 March 2010

Life Lessons from a Leper

Hi Guys, this follows on from my previous post "Insulting Camels with V.D. and why you don't do it"

Many years ago now I found myself wandering around the streets of Alexandria in Egypt. I had gone with a group of people from school and we had been told by our tour organiser to make sure that we didn't get seperated from the group, especially those of us with pale skin, blue eyes, and blonde hair (which I had back then). Apparently when it comes to sex slavery, those of us who had these particular attributes would command a higher price in Egypt where the girls are mostly dark haired and olive skinned, and so as far as the slavers were concerned we were not just fair game should they happen upon us, but we were actively sought out.  It was something of a concern then when I turned around from a stall I was looking at and found that the others had buggered off and left me! I still tell myself that it was an accident, but as I have said before on here I wasn't always the most popular person at school, so I suppose that is something that we will never be absolutely sure about, lol.  Still, I think that life is too short and too precious to hold a grudge for something that someone did as a teenager.

So there I was, quite alone, 14, and wandering around Alexandria desperately trying not to be noticed, which I failed at - miserably, lol. The thing is I couldn't let go of the fact of exactly where in the world I was. There I was, a kid from a not very well off family, and I was in Egypt of all places!  That was all I could think when we first stepped off our boat: "I'm in Egypt!", I couldn't quite believe I was there. Alexandria is totally poverty stricken, it is just a couple of shades above a shanty town in some areas, and there is raw sewage piled knee high in the streets.  In retrospect it therefore probably wasn't the best idea to wear white Levi's!  However, if you look closely, if you ignore the crippling poverty and the stench from the Mediterranean and the raw sewage combined, in its own ugly way it is quite quite beautiful.  It was in one of the sewage strewn streets that I saw the first Egyptian who was to have an unforgettable impact on my understanding of humanity.  She was just standing there watching us as we were talking animatedly, mostly about how best to avoid the shit. I glanced over at her and would have just walked on, but there was something about her that made me stop and pay more attention.  She was obviously horrendously poor, and I am not talking about "I wonder if I can afford to have a holiday this year" kind of poor, I am talking about "I wonder if I can feed my kids this week" kind of poor.  It was how she was dressed that grabbed my attention at first though; She had on a white blouse that had so many marks on it that I could only guess at it being actually white, a black cardigan that was so threadbare you could see through it to the blouse underneath, a ragged and patched black skirt, shoes that had the soles hanging off and the kind of tights where the holes were holding the nylon together.  But she wasn't dirty, ragged certainly, but not at all dirty. I wondered for a minute why exactly she had even bothered to put her tights on, as there were seriously more holes than tights themselves, but just as I wondered that I caught a glimpse of her face........I have never seen pride like it. She was so proud that she looked almost haughty. Then I realised - she had put those tights on because, holes or not, she still had a pair of tights to put on. Suddenly it occurred to me: That lady was wearing the rags she was standing there in, because they were her best clothes. I can still see her now as clearly as if it was only yesterday that I was on that street in Egypt, and if ever there is something I want but  for whatever reason can't have, I try to remember her standing there; dignified, and proud of the little she had.

Just as you come off the jetty from the boats you come across the Seedi Gaber Mosque, who's huge beautifully carved ornate arched doorway was quite unlike anything I had ever seen either before or since. Just around the corner from that there is the Hatem Mosque, who's architecture is very different, it has a more modern feel to it, but is equally as beautiful in its simplicity as its more ornate neighbour.  Almost just across the street from Hatem is the Ali Ibn Abi Taleb Mosque, which is offset at an odd angle from the rest of the street, no doubt making it the street's main focal point.  Just off the quayside is the Seedi Beshr Mosque, which looks surprisingly like an ordinary apartment block.  A little way and a couple of streets back from Seedi Beshr is the El Hedaya Mosque,  Next door to this is the Marmina Church, and a little way to the back of this church is the Ethad El Slam.  Faith means a great deal to Alexandrians, and judging by the poverty evident in the area, perhaps it should be no surprise. 

Interspersed between the many mosques and places of worship there was a rabbit warren of streets which held a lifetimes worth of surprises. Turn one corner and there was a little guy selling Egyptian handmade carpets, Kilims, (or Kelims), I wonder if this is where my love of antique ornate rugs originated? Turn another corner and suddenly there was a bustling market, full of life and the colours and smells of the mediterranean. Yet another corner turned presented a small street with nothing but a butchers shop in it.  Unfortunately this was the scene of my temporary undoing.  (You honestly didnt think that you were going to get all the way through a post of mine, without being told about a misdemeanour or two did you?) lol. 

The butchers shops in Egypt are a little different to the ones over here. For a start the "Shop" itself is used to store the as yet unwanted meat as inside the shop remains cool during the day, so the "display" meat is hung up under an "awning" outside the front of the shop, this then is where the business side of things is done.  So, there I was standing across the street from one such butchers shop, and trying to work out exactly what type of animal a particular carcass was. It was skinned, fairly long in the body, with fairly short but muscular legs and a long bushy black, white and tan coloured tail. I stood there for a good 15 - 20 minutes and I couldn't for the life of me work out what kind of animal it was. It definitely wasnt a cow - far too small, and it wasnt a sheep or an average sized pig as it was too big, so what the bloody hell was it?  I began to look at its individual characteristics, and that is when I noticed it properly for the first time: The bushy black, white and tan coloured tail.  I stood there for a couple of seconds and thought to myself "my mum's German Shepherd used to have a tail exactly like that".........then I stood there for another couple of seconds............then I threw up.

The trouble was, as I was throwing up I backed backwards at the same time and suddenly I became aware of something that was stuck to my shoe.  I finished vomiting and looked down to see what my unwelcome hitchhiker was. Now, I thought cats were supposed to be sacred in Egypt, so imagine my (simultaneous) surprise/alarm/shock/horror and downright disgust when I saw that I had got the heel of my shoe wedged in the rotting eye socket of a decomposing cat that had just been left in the street when it died.  I would love to be able to say that behaved in a very British way and that I kept my cool and removed the offending article in a calm and sedate manner.  But this was me, and I think you all know by now that "calm and sedate" just was never even going to be on the list to begin with.  Put it this way: Have you ever screamed full pelt and vomited at the same time?  Let me assure you that it's an interesting experience and no less so for the people foolish enough to be standing near to you.  It lends a whole new meaning to the phrase "projectile vomiting", and unfortunately that was not the only projectile that I launched at the egyptians that day.  In a moment of complete and utter terror, and with a kick that I have never been able to replicate since, I threw loose the rotting cat and watched in horror as it slow motioned its way towards the stalls of meat under the awning of the butchers shop, which was by now absolutely packed with people sheltering from the blistering midday heat.

I wasted absolutely no time at all.  Turning on my heel I legged it out of there in a grand style before the cat had even landed.  I knew when it had landed though - I could hear the screams and the unsheathing of knives as I turned right out of the alleyway and, deciding that discretion is indeed the better part of valour, promptly bolted straight down the street like a Gazelle on Speed.  I didn't know where the hell I was going, the sweat was literally pouring into my eyes and then baking in the Egyptian sun, and now I had even more people chasing me because I had knocked into them in my escape attempt, but, Hallelujiah! I thought I saw a part of the street that I recognised and I knew that if.....I.....could.....just......hop on my right foot..... and..... turn..... right, I would be in a........."SH*T!!" "FU%K!!" "B*LL*%KS!!".........Dead End Alley!  SO, ever such a slight miscalculation, and not infact the path back to the pier that I was expecting.  O.K, time for a (very) quick recce: Sheer walls and no steps, ladders or window ledges handy for scaling and escaping over the rooftops...."SH*T!" A totally unscaleable and extremely high "dead end" wall at the end of the alley......"FU%K!" And absolutely, positively no discernable routes out other than the one in........"B*LL*%KS!" RIGHT, there is only one thing for it:  Stand in the corner by the "dead end" wall....."check".  Turn and face the corner by the "dead end" wall......."check".  Pray......"Our Father, Who art in Heav............" As I was praying for the preservation of my bones, I gingerly and very slowly turned my head just in time to see a dozen or so stall holders and a couple of dozen assorted knives and cleavers race past the end of the alley, affording me the opportunity to momentarily sink to my knees and forcibly exhale.

That said I knew that I didn't have much time before they gave up and came back, so I was just hanging onto the wall and rising to my feet to get out of the alley and run in the opposite direction, when I became aware of a presence standing behind me.  Back on the ship we had been warned by our resident Tour Guide and expert on all things Mediterranean, that there were a lot of Lepers in Alexandria and that they would be just walking about in the street.  There was a strict set of guidelines to follow should we accidentaly bump into any of them. No 1 was: "DON'T bump into them - "wet" Leprosy in particular is highly contagious." No 2 was "Be Gracious - Lepers have feelings too and if you scream and run away you will upset them" and frankly, given the situation I now found myself in, I couldn't remember the rest of the guidelines.  I was too preoccupied with what was happening at that precise moment, namely that I could smell this guy before I even turned around saw him. Let me tell you, even if you have never smelled rotting human flesh before, the second you do, you instinctively know what it is; it's unmistakeable.

I turned around not knowing exactly what I was going to see, but Dear God, nothing could have prepared me for what came next.  I started at his feet, which were swathed in material and underneath a Kaftan, so I couldn't actually see them, thank god.  Looking further upwards I noticed that he had only three fingers left on both of his hands, all of the others had just rotted and dropped off, then came his face.  When I think back to it now I feel nothing but sympathy for the poor man, but at the time I was petrified. He had no nose, just a hole where his nose used to be, he was completely blind in one eye and going blind in the other, and when he turned his head to the side and talked I could see his teeth and tongue moving......through a hole in the side of his cheek. I so badly wish that I could say I dealt with it well, but I am sorry to say that I didn't at all.   He stepped forward and said something that I later found out was Arabic for "this is yours", and I screamed my lungs out and flattened myself up against the wall.  He shrank back and and just looked at me, so I forced myself to look at him in the eyes.  What I saw there horrified me, but not for the reasons that you may think.  His eyes were so full of hurt, because I had screamed at him.  This man was leading a terrible life full of pain and sickness, and he most likely was going to die soon, looking at the condition of him, and I had just made the truly awful life he had much worse. Suddenly he held something out to me, and it took me a couple of seconds to look away from his eyes and look at what he was holding out:  It was my scarf. I had dropped it when I ran away from the butchers shop and this terribly ill and dieing man had followed me as fast as he could just to give it back to me.  He handed it to me, said "no money" looked at me with such hurt again and then turned around and slowly walked down the alley.  When he got to the end of the alley he turned and looked at me again, pointed to the left, said "boat" and then limped away. I couldn't beleive what I had done, and to this day I am more sorry for hurting him like that than I could ever tell.

I ran out of the alley, followed his directions and within about 10 minutes I was safe on board our boat again, but I couldn't stop thinking about that man. I remembered that we were due to disembark again that night so that we could visit the Souk that happened during the evenings on the Pier next to the boat. I also remembered that he had said "no money", but I had to do something to help him, and to apologise for what I had done. I had bought some trinkets when we had landed in Greece, they hadn't cost very much but they were gold and silver, just a couple of rings and a bangle, so that night I wrapped them up in a spare facecloth, and after walking down to the Souk with the rest I slipped away and went in search of him.  I reasoned that he was a local and it was Souk night for the tourists so I was hoping that he wouldn't be very far from the action so to speak, and actually I didn't have to look very long before I found him just on the other side of the road from the pier. He wasn't begging, he was just standing there watching the lights and smells of the Souk, but more than that he was watching the people having a good time and laughing.  He was lost in thought as I walked up to him and looked so sad. I imagined that he had been the life and soul before he got sick and was remembering a time when he too could laugh still and have a good time, without idiots like me screaming at the sight and smell of him. I imagined that maybe he had a family, maybe even children that he no longer saw.  I'll tell you now, whenever I feel lonely I just remember him and I am immediately thankful for the people I have in my life.  I hoped so much that I could make him feel even just a little bit better. I admit that when I first went in search of him it was as much to assuage my own guilt at what I had done, as it was to help him, but seeing him standing there like that I only wanted to make him feel better. Even if it was only for a couple of minutes.  He looked up from his thoughts to see me walking towards him, and his face just fell, I was the last person on earth that he wanted to see in that moment, and that just killed me. Although I have to say that it served me right.  The first thing I told him as I got closer was "I am so sorry", but he just continued to look at me so I told him again.  This time I think he knew I meant it as his expression softened and he tried to smile a little. I held out the facecloth to him and he motioned for me to put it on the little wall he was leaning against, so that he wouldn'd touch me. I watched him open the parcel and immediately he said "no money!" I tried to explain that I knew he was too proud to beg and that they were a gift, that I wanted him to have them so that he could sell them and not have to ask for money, at least not for a little while anyway. It was difficult as I don't speak any Arabic and he only spoke a few words of English, but eventually we understood each other, and thankfully he accepted my gift as well as a few more heartfelt apologies. 

I sometimes think of that man and I wonder what happened to him. I should think that he would have died fairly soon after, but I always hope that the end was not terrible for him, or that at least it was quick, and although I hadn't meant to be mean to him, it was literally a "knee jerk" reaction to what I saw, still since that day I have never done to anyone else what I did to him, and I never will.

Copyright by Sami-Jane Harris. 2010. All rights reserved

Sunday, 21 March 2010

HIM Concert Bournemouth, 18/03/10.

Hey there everyone, I started to type this when I got back to the hotel after the events of concert night, but at that time in the morning I was shattered and actually fell asleep "mid-type" lol, so I am finishing this today: Also I took some photos on my phone which I dont think turned out brilliantly, but I will try to post those on here later once I have been able to take them off the phone.


Thursday 18th March 2010, O2 Academy, Bournemouth.


Dommin (Support Act):



Kristopher Dommin


Ok, let's start with Dommin who actually were a great support. I admit to knowing nothing about them, but as soon as I get home I am going to look them up on my "proper" computer (I am trying to type this on my mobile in the hotel bed at the minute.) I enjoyed their set so much and I loved their Goth\80's\punky vibe, I think they were an absolutely perfect choice to support HIM and a very clever decision was made in including them, in more ways than just that one, lol! What I mean is that their style and songs complemented both HIM and "Screamworks..", but whilst Dommin were very very good, they still couldnt overshadow HIM. I Absolutely loved their set, especially their version of "I just died in your arms tonight" by Cutting Crew. I loved that song in the 80's but I have to say that I think I prefered Dommin's version. It was good to see that they also seemed to be influenced by the 80's and especially with Kristofer Dommin the lead singer's hair looking remarkably like the hairstyles that were once found on "A Flock Of Seagulls"!


Dommin's rendition of "Just Died In Your Arm's Tonight" by Cutting Crew.


OK Guys, just about here is where I fell asleep back in the hotel room, so after this point it is me typing today;

After Dommin left the stage there was a 20-25 Minute "interval" when they were setting up the stage for HIM.

Setting out Ville's Mat.


HIM:




Wow, I don't really know where to start. First of all I was so lucky in where I was seated. I was up in the Gallery, in a little area that had been sectioned off away from the main crowd on the right hand side of the stage, or the left if you were in the crowd looking at the stage. There was a little low wall where there were some stairs that led down to a walkway where the security guards were standing, and I was in the corner between that and the glass partition of the Gallery railing. So there I was literally about 15 feet away from HIM, just slightly up on their right, rocking away in my Trilby hat and purple top and with no-one standing in front of me. Lucky, lucky me. The Atmosphere in the O2 was electric, seriously the place just rocked and not a bad thing happened all night, on the whole the crowd were really pleasant and I was pleased to see several "older" people there, there was even a 60-70 year old grannie down in the main audience completely rocking out! If you discount the night that my son was born, I think I might well have had the best night of my life! Before I say anything else I would like to say that the staff at the O2 Bournemouth treated me really really well. From Ollie the Daytime Box Office Manager to Barny and the Security Guy who took me through the crowds to the sectioned off area. I am so grateful for everything you did, I was in a lot of pain on Thursday night and I wasn't even sure that I was going to make it to the concert in the first place. I know that you had to help me, but honestly if it hadnt been for your assistance I dont think I would have been able to stay past the first half an hour or so. I definitely wouldnt have got to see Ville and the Guys.



Right, now I have got that out of the way - on to the rest of it:  I am happy to report that HIM definitely don't look like trolls!  For those who have read this blog before you might well remember that I didn't even know what they looked like before the concert, so I was more than a little relieved when 5 regular, good looking guys walked on stage! It's so strange, I suppose you could say that they are not what would "normally" be considered as extremely handsome, but, I watched them all and every one of them has a difficult to categorise, attractive quality that would set them apart in a crowd. At least on the night Gas was open and exhuberant, in that moment he was just enjoying where he was, completely tub-thumping, although I think it would be unwise to dismiss him as being nothing more than that. I could see that Mige is the type of person who would have a wicked sense of humour, but as Phillip Seymour Hoffman once said, a jovial personality can often be used to hide a troubled heart or past, so perhaps there is something more to him than just his warm personality. Apparently according to those around me he had cut his hair and some prefered it long, but I have to say that although I usually prefer long hair on men I like it the length it is. Linde was quiet, but his heart and soul shone through his riffs. I was told that they also shine through alcohol, lol. Burton, I think may be the "dark horse"! My grandma played the piano, and I learned to play when I was very young although I don't think I could play a note now, but still I know that the heart of a pianist is a dark and strange place indeed, lol! On the "face" of things he barely smiled, and so when I then really watched his expressions the level of emotion, enjoyment and dedication was quite unexpected.  And Ville, well what can I say? I think this man is not quite all he seems, there is a depth and a steely strength that is easy to miss if you get caught up in the whole "Androgynous Fragility" thing. Someone at the concert told me that Ville used to wear lots of makeup and the whole "fragile" and "broken - hearted" image was actively promoted. After all most people who are involved with the "Goth" scene in some way will know that in this group of people at least, sex is not always what sells. What is guaranteed to sell is heartbreak. Yet this demeanour is not at all entirely calculated. Just listening to his songs, and watching him on stage, it seems that Ville is an unusual mix of someone who has that steely determination, and who knows the type of people that he his playing to exceptionally well, but also he seems to be someone who can at times be extremely fragile, who has undoubtedly felt that heartbreak many times over, and who has an extraordinary talent, unlike any other, for being able to express the complex emotions he feels, through beautiful lyrics which are ethereal and unashamedly poetic. I was also told that in interviews Ville is extremely open and honest, which is considered to be one of his most endearing qualities.  I have not read any interviews with him, but, I think I would have to disagree with this. If you read his lyrics, as well as listen to them it seems to me that this man may have to be a little more guarded than that.  Openly reading his lyrics and reading between the lines of them, and now watching him on stage especially in the "quiet" moments between songs, this seems to be a man who has been badly hurt in the past, not just by love, or also the lack of it, but also by different aspects of life and humanity in general. There is a vulnerability to him that seems to be at complete odds with the strength he has. It's so funny; my mother has always told me that I have the strength to do anything I want, but I have never had enough faith in myself to completely believe her, I wonder if it is the same for Ville?  He is also widely considered to be intelligent. Perhaps then, Ville has learned over the years how to manage errant journalists armed with invasive questions.  Maybe he tells them some small truthful things, thereby "drip feeding" interviewers and fans alike some correct information about himself, that really doesnt doesn't give away too much of a clue about how he really feels sometimes, but maybe he also includes some, how shall I say this - "misdirections", allowing the interviewer to go away happy, for the fans to think that they have learned something "personal" about their idol, and for Ville's personal life to stay just that - personal.  Judging by the screaming crowds on the night I cant say I blame him at all if this is what he does.

When Ville walked onto that stage he reminded me of a "Lord Byron" figure, which other fans told me has been widely noted in the past. A modern day plethora of  Byron, Shelley, Beaudelaire, Poe, all mixed with Bolan, Morrison, Hendrix, Cat Stevens, Iommi, Thunders, Elvis, Iggy, even a little Crosby and Young etc etc, and with more than a little nod towards Cash and Osbourne! This then seems to be a man who is more than complex in his apparent quest for simplicity, and one who is so determined to find an emotional and psychological understanding, that he dares to look for it in people and places where even angels wouldn't even dare to tread. And friends, that is not the mark of a weak man.




As for the group as a whole, it is apparent that they are friends first and foremost, but as it is with most things in life, there is more to this group than that. Just listening to the fans at the concert, it seemed that quite a few of them thought that Ville is the sum total of the group, that without him, 'HIM' would be nothing. Certainly I can see why he is the frontman, he has a focal quality that is hard not to see, and again he has that steely determination you need to drive a group of easy going people like this forward. But I think those fans really do need to tear their gaze away from Ville for a second and really look at the guys standing (or in Gas's case - sitting) around him, because in all of them are the various qualities that make 'HIM' work as a group. Gas is a very good drummer, and has the exhuberance and the apparent love of metal that a group like HIM needs, Mige is an incredible base player and has the hippy easy going element, Linde is one of the best and most unsung lead guitarists around today, and also seemingly has the "quiet but alcoholic" side covered lol,  Burton is an extraordinary pianist, just a phenomenal talent, and again it would seem that he quietly shares Villes dark heart in his own way, and Ville has all of the qualities that a "frontman" and lyricist needs and the determination and drive it takes to continually push HIM forward. Although Ville is the lyricist and writes all the songs, plus the original music, the muscial contribution of the other guys must always of course be factored into the equation and never, ever overlooked. Just listen to the difference between "Beaudelaire in Braille" and "Screamworks....".  "B.I.B" is Ville, through and through, but "Screamworks...." is HIM, and I think it was a very clever and good idea to include both C.D's in the one "Limited Edition" package, because for those who have heard both, now the muscial contribution of the band as a whole can surely never be discounted.




Secondly I loved the fact that the concert started with "Dressed in Black" by the Shangri-La's being played over the sound system, as I really like their songs and music. They were one of the first successful all - female groups at a time when it wasn't always possible for all-female anythings to be successful. Their lyrics were often very dark and perhaps a little ahead of their time, so I often think that maybe they were the first "Goth Girls"! I also feel that as their music has not only endured the test of time, but as it also influences people like Amy Winehouse and is now being played as an opener for a HIM concert, this is proof of how good they really were. Thank you for choosing the Shangri-La's guys, I really enjoyed them as an "opener" Here is the rest of HIM's set list for the evening:
Main Set List:
OPENER: Dressed in Black, by the Shangri-La's, then:
1). Like St. Valentine, 2). Right Here In My Arms, 3). Rip Out The Wings Of A Butterfly, 4). Heartkiller, 5). Join Me In Death, 6). The Kiss Of Dawn, 7). Katherine Wheel, 8). Poison Girl, 9). Buried Alive By Love, 10). Disarm Me (With Your Loneliness), 11). Your Sweet 666, 12). Wicked Game, 13). Scared To Death, 14). When Love And Death Embrace,
Then the Encore:
15). The Sacrament, 16). Love, The Hardest Way, 17). The Funeral Of Hearts.

Do you know what? They played 17 songs and the time flew by. I really could have sat there and listened to another 17 songs so happily, as it seemed like the concert felt too short, but with that amount of songs of course it wasn't, and it would have been selfish to ask for more. There were a couple of minor technical glitches with the sound at the very beginning of the concert, but after they were ironed out everything went smoothly. Ville joked around a fair bit and the lady sitting next to me (Hi Marianne, lol) told me that this is what they have always been like.  Not that you will ever read this Ville but I saw the motion you made to Gas with your hands, and I am glad that you liked my top, cheeky man lol!  There was a young girl in the front who made a comment to Ville about half way through, which I can only guess was about having sex with him. I couldn't properly make out what she said, as I had my earplugs in (tinnitus since I was 15), but it caused Ville to be very funny and reply telling her "let me see your I.D."  Again she said something that I couldn't make out over the screaming girlies, but again Ville replied saying "Yeah but up here on stage? What you are asking me to do is illegal!" lol, funny guy. It must be strange to him when a 16 year old girl is telling him that she wants to have sex with him, the man is in his 30's after all, and bless them but the younger girlies wont yet know enough of the world, or older men to be able to see that. All they know is that there are hormones raging unrestricted around their bodies and that there is a decent looking guy up there on stage who is famous. It was the strangest thing, actually and a perfect example of what I have just said: One young girlie threw a pink "My Little Pony" style stuffed toy unicorn on stage for Ville, but it was dressed in a bondage vampire outfit! Seriously, a "Gimp" Unicorn, and dont get me wrong, it totally appealed to my sense of humour, but it just felt a little bit sick and wrong that a young girl had not only thrown that, but had also thought to dress it up that way. On the other hand they still behaved like typical teenage girlies, all wanting a slice of what they think is a glamourous "celebrity" lifestyle. Bless their hearts but they probably still think that travelling in a tourbus with the lead singer of a band is an exciting and glamourous thing to do!

I have to say that their idea of glamourous travelling and my idea of the same thing are probably a little bit different, but before anyone says anything - no it doesnt have anything to do with age, other than I have seen more of what life has to offer. When I think of glamourous travelling I think of The Orient Express, or even Concord when that was running, but life on a tourbus hasn't been an attractive idea for the last, ooh, say 20 years or so lol!  I mean, stop to consider the practicalities for a moment, such as the food being dire and the cause of the "all for one and one for all" theory when it comes to getting sick, or that you now can't use the bathroom on the tourbus *ahem* "properly", as now you have to pay some member of the entourage around £2000 to empty the chemical toilet each time, and that the sleeping arrangements on even the nicest tourbuses look as though they are a cross between a 12 year olds bunkbed and a mortuary drawer, and if you combine that with 5 or 6 other guys, all farting in the middle of the night right above your head and to your left and right, well, call me "picky" but that isnt necessarily how I would choose to sleep lol. Then there are the inevitable squabbles that will happen even between guys who normally get on with each other really well, and that you never get a moment to yourself, or rather if you do want a moment to yourself you have to retire to the previously mentioned "mortuary drawer/bunkbed" in order to do so, and finally that "backstage" is often not the air conditioned paragon of luxury that some think it might be, moreover it is really just a place to be concealed away from the masses. Even Aerosmith have had to change in a peeling corridor or two in their time. That said there are a lot of benefits to travelling like this too - namely the mobile bohemian lifestyle, and speaking as a person who has a mother with Romanian heritage, this lifestyle certainly appeals to me on a few levels. So bless them, and I really do mean this nicely and sincerely; perhaps we should let the girlies dream while they still can. Just hopefully not of Ville riding butt - naked and bareback on a "Gimpicorn", lol!

On the subject of fans talking to Ville whilst he was on stage, I have to say that I was tempted to do the same thing - seriously. I wanted to call down to him and ask him if his lyric "Page 43" in Shatter Me With Hope had anything to do with the song of the same name by David Crosby (please see previous post), but I chickened out at the last minute. I am kicking myself now of course, but you cant dwell on these things, maybe I will have another chance to ask him in the future?

I spent some time watching the crowd while I was there and was pleased to note that there was a fairly equal male/female ratio. Marianne told me that when she first saw HIM, it was mostly girls in the audience, infact she said that the poor boys who did go never made it into the first 3-5 rows infront of the stage, lol! But Thursday night was different and the vibe was just incredible. The Guys seemed to enjoy their time on stage as much as the audience enjoyed them being up there, which was a wonderful bonus, I am glad that they enjoyed it. I wondered if there were not more songs from the new album on the set list, because maybe the guys were worried that the new album was so different that the fans might not like it, and maybe that was the reason that some of the older songs were included. Songs that they knew people liked. I hope that this wasn't the case as I love this new album, and judging from what I heard everyone else saying on the night, "Screamworks...." has gone down really well with everyone else too. Personally I think it is the best album they have ever recorded, and I never thought I would say that, as I love all of their others so equally. Overall I think there was probably the right mix of old and new songs, judging by the crowds reaction to them all, but again personally I think I would have like to hear at least a couple more songs from the new album, particularly "In the arms of Rain", as this song reminds me of a post I wrote on here last year about my Dad. That is not to say that I didn't really enjoy myself, because for lots of reasons I had the best time, and not hearing more new songs didnt in any way spoil my enjoyment of the night. For reasons that are entirely personal, my favourite songs of the night were Poison Girl, Join Me In Death, Scared To Death, Katherine Wheel, and for a different reason The Funeral of Hearts ("Eeeviiiiiilll") Lol!!!

I enjoyed the night so much that I even went on over to YouTube and "favourited" some of the videos that have already been uploaded from the concert, (I cant beleive that they got them on there so quickly!). I even found a guy on there who was standing next to me and had a quick message back and forth with him, lol (Hi Ethan, hope you get the new camera soon). Now that Sarah is not around I can actually get on YouTube, I havent been able to get on it for so long that I forgot what my user name and password was!


For those who might be interested, as you will know from a couple of my previous posts on here, my biggest fear about going to the concert was whether or not HIM's songs were still going to help with my pain once I knew what the guys looked like. I know how my mind works and I knew that I would think about anything that I had learned about them, instead of just being able to concentrate on the music and lyrics, which are what had previously worked for me. Well,  I woke up in a lot of pain on Friday morning after the concert and that was the morning I was due to check out of my hotel, so in a panic I put on some HIM songs and desperately hoped that they would work. To my amazement and surprise they actually worked quicker than they would do normally, and yesterday was the same.

Well, I have to sign off now as I am going to try to get to Foyles in London by about 2.30- 3.30ish this afternoon, so I have just about enough time to say:

Thank You Guys - for everything xxx.

Copyright by Sami-Jane Harris. 2010. All rights reserved