Thursday, 14 February 2013

Acrylic yarn

I hate the south of London! Here we are at midnight in Catford. The last train has gone, there are no tubes anywhere in this vicinity, none of the buses go anywhere either of us have heard of and there's a sort of listless energy on the streets. It's always a bit scary to be somewhere you don't know this late at night. 

We've been at Julie's this evening, celebrating her birthday with a series of ridiculous parlour games. It was a near perfect evening of food and laughter. 

My day started at the Musician's Union head quarters in The Oval, with a top secret meeting with the designers of a new piece of music software. It wasn't quite as exciting as I'm trying to make it sound. A group of us had been invited to chat about the sorts of features that might encourage us to invest in a new computer programme, and it became a fabulous opportunity to whinge about what's already on the market. It's always good to meet fellow composers and swap notes about the different ways we approach our craft.

From Oval, I went to the West End to meet an agent about a singer we're hoping will front the Four Colours EP we're recording for the Kaleidoscope Trust in May. The agent liked the track. Everyone likes the track, which is a great relief to me, having had it so viciously insulted in a courtroom by a curious woman determined to prove a brilliantly audacious point. It's amazing how British law could make it possible to prove a work is "unperformable" without said piece ever being performed! Ah, the joys of finally being able to see your work used for the purpose for which it was written. 

We're now in Lewisham on a night bus heading north. The driver very kindly allowed me to get on without paying. To cap it all, my oyster card has run out of credit. Always the way when you're in a part of town with no topping-up mechanisms.

I bought Julie yarn for her birthday. Well, what else do you buy a keen knitter, even one with a stash which well exceeds her life expectancy? The trouble is, I know nothing about knitting, and the woman who served me in the haberdashery department of John Lewis was next to useless. Most of the people who work in wool shops live for the experience of recommending yarn to a customer holding a debit card. I asked her to take me to something special and she pointed at a ball of bright pink acrylic for £4 and said, "that'ld make a good pair of socks." And with that, she was gone...

Can anyone suggest any stress-beating techniques? I'm a proper ball of tension right now! 

The next question of course is how to get home from London Bridge. It's 1am, and the breeze coming off the Thames is terrifyingly cold! 

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