Sunday, 29 November 2009

All the World's a Stage

Last week was an appointment with the new vampire but at the last minute a "must do" meeting at the Hackney Empire came in.  Never mind said Ms. Dracula, I'm in Dalston for an earlier appointment, I'll meet you at the Empire. I should have had my suspiciouns. The new phlebo was called Sally Diamond. How showbiz can you get? I expected tassles instead of a fob watch.

The only spare room at the Empire was the studio theatre. The only usable seats were on the stage as part of the set. In the room above the studio theatre was the band room and a bad ass band for the Hackney Christmas show was rehearsing. Damn they were funky. And so me and Mrs. Diamond sat, positioned infront of an imaginary audience drawing blood and checking pressure. And then the band joined in.
There'll be a sharp prick said nurse as she puntured my arm.
Can you feel it? played the band upstairs.Can you feel it?
Then she asked about the injections of rebif chinese hamsters.
The band cracked straight into Level 42's seminal hit Chinese Way complete with unfeasable Mark King baseline. As Ms. Diamond dropped a pippets worth of my blood onto a slide I was convinced she was singing along. And then she definitely shuffled her feet choreographocally as she returned with a theomometer.
Hot in the City, hot in the city tonight filtered down from the room upstairs.
If all the world is a stage then it's a full blooded musical. Directed by David Lynch.

Sunday, 15 November 2009

Cold Feet

My cold feet were back last night. I woke up with frost bitten toes and then couldn't warm them up how ever many layers of quilt I trapped them in. Foreigner (Cold as Ice) got stuck in my head and sleep slipped away til dawn was up. We were down to one offspring thanks to a sleep over party of yesterdays "best friend", tomorrows "I hate her" and next weeks "bestest ever friend", so me and the youngest, just the two of us (without Bill Withers) had a quality breakfast together. By the time I had the papers in front of my eyes my toes had melted and all aches had decamped to my arms. It's probably a sign of stress.

Tuesday is our big fund raising gala at the Royal Albert Hall. The last time I played at the Albert Hall I was a sprightly 20 something playing with a succesful, all be it aged pop band. I've always suffered nerves before performances. People say that it's good to get nervous - it channels the adrenaline. Rubbish. I've never understood how to channel anything. It just makes me feel sick. And if there's nothing quite like a super-sized venue to bring out the cold sweat of fear then there's nothing like the stress of fear to bring out the numbness and tingling of MS. Or maybe I've just got cold feet.

Sunday, 8 November 2009

Conceptually Speaking

Feeling full of health and with a bounce in my step I headed off to watch the mighty Spurs play against Sunderland. If there is anything more guaranteed to trigger an exacerbation of symptoms it is watching Spurs play. Nearly two hours of sitting in the cold watching the most stressful team in the Premier League hoof the ball around in search of the beautiful game. They didn't disappoint me. They stumbled around, misplaced passes, scored an offside goal, gave away a penalty, saved the penalty, scored an unlikely second and held out for a home victory that propelled them into forth spot and me into numb hands.

Then it was off to meet my brother for a spot of conceptual art at the Tate Modern. If my MS was an art form it would be conceptual. It wouldn't be renaissance...too precise. It wouldn't be impressionism...too gentle. It might flirt with the randomness of Pollock. It would have a passing nod at Dali's weird surrealism and sometimes the insides of my arms feels like a Hieronymus Bosch. But no, when all said and done, to me it is conceptual. It is like a temporary installation - but one that reappears when you least expect it. And then it leaves you scratching your head thinking "what the hell is all that about then".

I'm warming to this now. Next week I shall consider what 20th century music MS would most resemble: Stravinsky's poly-rhythmic dissonance of the Rite of Spring or the Osmond's Crazy Horses?