This week, Monday 23rd December 2013

A Day And A Night Until Christmas

merlyxmasI am thrilled to have finally finished work for the festive season – it’s taken ages and no time at all to get here. I am pleased; I like Christmas, or more specifically I enjoy the prospect of quiet. It hasn’t happened yet…

It’s been a knackering couple of weeks running up towards Christmas. Partly that’s work, which has had a special frenzy about it for a while. Without going into specifics, the organisation is being forcibly separated into public and potentially private sectors along lines drawn by morons. The plans for it are terrifyingly inept and poorly thought out. And that’s just the high level view. When you get down to actual details you find a horrifying blend of ignorance, naivete, arbitrary decisions and absence of information. Some species of catastrophe is inevitable.

Improv and home have been much more fun, but have torn us out of doors most evenings. There have been a pleasing number of evenings spent drinking and chatting with close friends; it is a goodness. We’ve also finally got a new television (thanks Mum & Mike!) so we can start catching up on a month’s recorded TV and Christmas films.

This Week

Not much, other than Christmas really… I have great plans for Lego, reading and drinking the cupboard full of beer I have acquired. We shall see select humans, hug them and send them on their way again. I intend to publish a series of Christmas beer drinking reviews for your entertainment and my inebriation.

♥ Last Week’s Scribbles

Poem: Find Me – a little bleaker than I’d intended, and unintentionally triggering a mental run off.

Gig Report – Knickerbocker Glorious

I was really hoping to get straight into lie ins immediately, but I had to bound out of bed on Saturday at abnormal o’clock to ravage Derby with the Furthest From The Sea gang for Knickerbocker Glorious. Marvellous chaps and musical folks all round. I find my Saturdays spent with Jamie, Dave and Josh especially fun. They’re an excellent crew and we seem to have clicked rather nicely. We’ve had some fascinating gigs this year. Often it’s dealing with complete arseholes and whining randoms that makes it so special. I shall never forget the war of the badgers, the drunks and the hat people.

Last week we had a nice range of people I had not previously met on stage, including the rather lovely swing Christmas singing of Rose Devine.

We had another horrifyingly young and talented young singer, one Georgia Fowler:

And yet more charming guitar and voice skills from Hannah Howe:

To get the balance just right we also had Dwane Reads (a very fun on stage partner) and local comic and poet Flames Snakely. We had some fine banter and story, poetry and song invention on the fly.

I also just noticed that I’m on the Furthest From The Sea  Artist page – how lovely, but then that’s the sort of folks they are. Next year is going to be immensely cool and exciting – Derby’s going to be the place for joy.

Film: The Muppet Christmas Carol 

On Sunday morning, a time one might reasonably expect to be blissfully unconscious, saw us rise at a Satanic hour to see the Muppets strut their Dickens at Cineworld. Incredibly we also hauled two good friends out to see it as well. I was pre-verbal until after the film but I was able to snort and laugh throughout. It’s a surprisingly resilient film in which I still find new amusements. I very much enjoyed Michael Caine‘s incredible awkwardness when singing – it reminds me of my own pain when trying to loosen up enough to sing myself.

I’d forgotten how much I detest Robin in his needlessly over the top portrayal of Tiny Tim, but also how weird Gonzo/Charles’ proclamation that “Tiny Tim didn’t die” is. It certainly made us laugh… to the perplexity of the kids behind us. Other brilliant moments include the watermelons being stolen at the beginning, ice-skating penguins and the lobsters in the closing scene.

Events and Excitement

Well, Christmas – obviously… but after that:

Wednesday 8th January 2014

Pub Poetry_SQPub Poetry – Open Mic Comic Lit

An evening of poetry karaoke – bring your stories, poems and songs just so long as they’re funny.

The Canalhouse
Canal Street
8.00pm – FREE

Thursday 9th January 2014

Gorilla Burger2_SQ_SM

Gorilla Burger: improv comedy carnage

Jam show – a chance for anyone to get on stage, and a superb opportunity to get an idea of what Nottingham improv is all about.
The Corner
8 Stoney Street
(off Broad Street)
7.30pm – £4

Friday 10th January 2014

Pub Poetry_SQPub Poetry – Open Mic Comic Lit

An evening of poetry karaoke – bring your stories, poems and songs just so long as they’re funny.

The Old Cottage Tavern
Byrkley Street
Burton on Trent
7.30pm – FREE

Christmas Song: Santa Slayed My Gal ~ Misk Hills Mountain Rambler

Christmas is Fun

Misk Hills Christmasas

My dear pal Misk Hills Mountain Rambler and the epically entertaining DH Lawrence & The Vaudeville Skiffle Show collective have provided us with a skiffley comic marvel. Americana, skiffle, Christmas and comedy?  It would be remiss to not share it with you all.

You can grab it for 69p (that’s pence! – get it for everyone you know) from

Singalong Fun

To enhance your delight, Misky’s included the lyrics so you can sing along at home.

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It was late Christmas Eve, when he came down my flue
He said to my babe, “How do you do”
He walked past the tree and he gave her the eye
He said, “baby, I’m gonna switch on y’ lights!”

I was lying fast asleep, I was already pissed
Safe in the knowledge, Santa didn’t exist
But I think someone’s been telling me lies
Now Santa’s eating my baby’s mince pies

His name was Santa in the big red suit
Santa in the big black boots
Coming round here with his bulging sack
We ain’t sayin a thing bout that

He came round here on his big white sleigh
He was trying to steal my baby away
They drank my whisky and they drank my wine
He took all my money it was the end of the line

With that false white beard and the big red nose
My baby she had nothing to lose
He found her switch and watched her lights glow
What he did next … only the Devil knows

His name was Santa in the big red suit
Santa in the big black boots
Coming round here with his bulging sack
…..Oh we ain’t sayin a thang bout that

Oh Santa’s stealin my gaaaaal
Oh Santa’s stealin my gaaaaal
Oh Santa’s stealin my gaaaaal
Oh Santa . . . . . . . . he’s stealin my gal!

She said, Santa “ What you got for my Son”
He said, “Never mind that” and he pulled out a gun
He shot my baby, now she’s gone away
He’s got her body on the back of his sleigh

He chain-sawed her up, and then he stopped for a beer
Then he fed those little pieces, to the hungry Reindeer
He’s a Psycho killer and he’s heading your way
Don’t ask him for a present, cos’ you might rue the day

He’s a homicidal killer in a big red suit
He took my baby’s body and a bag full o’ loot
Coming round here with his chain-saw and gun
…. Oh that’s his idea of a night full of fun

Cos Santa slayed my gaaaal
Oh Santa slayed my gaaaal!
Oh Santa slayed my gaaaal
Oh Santa . . . slayed my gal

Happy Christmas ….. !

The Future’s Bright, The Future’s Skiffle

It’s been a while since I’ve shared a stage with this amazing crew. I think we tag teamed briefly during the Furthest From The Sea Festival in June. No – I’m instantly lying, we were both on the bill for Little Wolf Parade‘s performance art show in the middle of Nottingham just a couple of months ago. Anyway – it’s been far too long since we did the Pirate Coves show in the Nottingham Comedy Festival back in 2012 (2011? I have no idea how time works). It is clearly of the highest importance to catch up properly in the New Year and do some cool and foolish stuff together again.