Posted by: Andrew Skelton | 16/12/2011

Good Day, Bad (Hair) Day

Bad Hair Day, originally uploaded by

How strange, as I typed the blog title, I could hear the voice of the person who I’m quoting actually saying the phrase (mind you, the voice did have to speak up to contend with all the other voices in there). I was given a DAB (digital audio broadcasting) radio for a “significant” birthday a few years ago primarily to listen to XFM, a radio station I used to listen to whilst commuting into London (well, Borehamwood – famous for being Elstree’s* neighbour), as the station was only broadcast within the M25 but could be heard anywhere on DAB. It turned out I didn’t listen to the intended station for long as I soon discovered BBC 6 Music to which the radio has been permanently tuned since. A number of BBC Radio 1 presenters have migrated to 6 Music and it’s Steve Lamacq show that I regularly listen to whilst cooking the family evening meal.

One of the featurettes he has on his show is “Good Day, Bad Day” where a person is invited on the show to talk a bit about themselves, their taste in music, the first band they saw live culminating in choosing two tracks that denotes a good or bad day in the persons life. It’s a fun part of the program, and Steve is always seems genuinely interested in what people have to say. In fact there is a great deal of audience participation with the public prompted to send in emails, text messages on specific subjects – all music related. I spent a lot of 2010 trying to shoe horn Cardiacs songs into the various discussion points, even having Steve dedicate a couple of track to me (not Cardiac ones sadly) – and after having bombarded the show’s email address one particular week, I received an email from them asking whether I wanted to appear on the show. I wasn’t in the right frame of mind at the time, but as the offer is still open I may well take the opportunity in 2012.

Anyway, that doesn’t really explain today’s blog title. Well, first of all it’s been a good (no, a great) day and I’m sure I’ll forget some of the salient points but here goes…. First off, I received my Dad’s Christmas present today, a new and totally awesome tripod head (a Gimble similar to the Waverley Gimble) through the post and whilst I might not be able to have it as a surrogate teddy bear (as I did one year with a toy sit-on tractor (I must have only been 4 or 5, Dear Reader)) but it is standing in front of me connected to the tripod itself so I can keep admiring it as I write this blurb. That could easily have been enough to make a good day great but as if this was not enough I found a long lost CD, one of my favourites, hidden in amongst a pile of rather average albums – and so glad was I to see it I was almost (ALMOST but not quite) in tears. The band in question is the magnificent My Life Story.. the album.. the Golden Mile. It’s pop music at it’s most vivacious and glamorous – in fact it’s Pop music with a capital P.

Two fantastic things… but wait.. there’s more. I’ve mentioned before how I purchased a GroupOn voucher to have one of my photos printed on a board, similar to a canvas. When it arrived the photo was perfect but two corners of the board weren’t bonded correctly… the staples used to connect the two pieces of frame where askew leaving a gap in between. Having bought some wood glue for the new model layout, I carefully removed the staples, applied the glue to the various surfaces and then used a bracket to hold corners tightly in place whilst the glue set. Having removed the bracket, you can’t tell which of the corners are manufactured correctly and which ones I’ve managed to fix. Very rewarding indeed.

I am hoping to get out with the camera this weekend, but with only one weekend before Christmas, there is plenty to do around the house beforehand. I will have to get out with the camera at some point though as I really don’t have many photos left I’m prepared to let loose on the general public (or Sergent Public for that matter.. and Major Major** is another thing entirely).

* Elstree Studios is to the UK what Holywood is to the US and in fact you may find that a number of the famous and influential films of the last 50 years.. Star Wars (IV), Star Ware (v) The empire strikes back, Star Wars (VI) Return of the Jedi, Who Framed Roger Rabbit, Star Wars (III) Revenge of the Sith, Raiders of the Lost Ark, Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom, Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, Lolita, One Million Years B.C., The Shining. The last two of this list were a real surprise to me – I had assumed they were US made films.

** Major Major is one of the characters in the wonderfully black humoured novel, Catch 22



  1. Enjoyed your post today Andrew. Gee your dad knows a good Christmas present when he sees one!
    Interesting point about BBC Radio 6. Keep an ear out for Jozif (my son the DJ)!
    He has just been invited to put together a show, or a piece for 6 for the new year, I know he has compiled most of the material.
    Elstree is a magical place. In the 60s and 70s I spent some very enjoyable times there. One time was a six week TV series and I got to play with the late and very great Jack Parnell Orc. At first I was scared to death, one Jack had been a great drummer in his time and two, sitting immediately on my right was Kenny Baker on lead trumpet and one step down from was Don Lusher on lead trombone! These were the great names I had grown up listening to when they were in the Ted Heath band. So, Elstree has some wonderful memories for me.
    I am currently writing this from my sick bed where I am recuperating from Oral Surgery, I had to have biopsy from three sites in my mouth, followed by 9 stitches! But, feeling better all the time.

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