I Know I Said No More Uni Talk…

And, I really won’t bring it up any further now, BUT….I made this…because I feel a bit giddy. I got my latest assignment result. And, seriously….I’m much more happy about the feedback that has come with it. It’s just wonderful. I cried. But, the mark is reflective of how wonderful the feedback is. So, I made a silly jokey thing. I love these screenshots of Jim from that short Canadian TV interview in 1981. Jesus Christ, what a beautiful man! So I allowed myself some fun with one. Taking the piss out of myself, ostensibly.

Anyway…the assignment result!

I am genuinely stunned. And you’ll know from previous posts just how much I was dreading having to reflect on my own work and how I feel I am doing so far as a student.

The lesson I take from it? To REALLY SEE my worth! And to SEE that I am doing very well with my study and I will only do better if I continue to apply diligence and persistence and stay the course! Finally, to know when to be hard on myself, and to truly know when I am being TOO hard on myself.

Thanks, Jim! Lol

Love you! ❤️

(As if he’d give two shits to whether I’m doing well or not. Never mind. It’s whether *I* care is the point that matters.)

The ‘Family’ and the Black Sheep


I wish I could believe this. I wish it felt this way for me, but it rarely has. There is a distinct and marked bias towards fans that have been around for a long time. To espouse the notion that there isn’t…? I myself don’t see it. 

I entered the Simple Minds fanbase with a LOT of trepidation. I was scared of exposing myself to yet another ‘clique’. I had enough of ‘cliques’ at school. (When I was there.)

I have made amazing friendships! I mean, geez, one of those lasting friendships sees a friend of mine having been living with me for the past several months (and continuing still). Without Simple Minds, we’d have never met. I guess we bonded from both being ‘Johnny-come-latelys’. Birdy didn’t rekindle her love for SM until 2013, and myself, just a year later. 

For me? I was fairweather at best before that. Only ever invested in buying one album (Once Upon A Time – actually, it was a requested gift) and would borrow albums from the library (thank you, Andrew Carnegie!) if I wanted to listen to other things of theirs over the years. 

I have had mixed dealings with other fans. Some great friendships, but also the opposite of that. You can’t like everyone, and you can’t be liked by everyone. This fact I am aware of and accept. And I feel that the band members themselves can blow hot and cold…but I guess that’s fair enough. I’m sure feeling pressured to be “on” all the time gets…wearing. 

Factoring in all of that…I don’t feel much a part of things right now. I have felt this way for several months. I don’t feel keen to input much in any of the fan groups I am a member of – and I am only a member of three these days when I used to be a member of…I don’t know how many! Lol.

I feel ostracised from the fanbase (and the band) and I feel reluctant to push my blog at all – esp. at the moment as the content is such a mixed bag and seems to be veering further and further away from being a Simple Minds blog – and I wish this wasn’t so. I’ve always felt a surge of cringing in pushing my blog, always fearful it would come across as posturing – which I guess it is. You’re excited to share this thing you spend time creating. And if you feel you’ve got a scoop, then you’re excited to share that too. But all that is gone. All that bravado and gallus – it’s just all gone. 

My blog now feels like my retreat. My ‘quiet place’ for expressing my love for this band. For a long time I felt a reciprocation went on – I loved them like no other band, and they appreciated my devotion – but I am just one hen in a battery farm coop. 

I certainly don’t feel the kind of reciprocation Dan feels. But then, why should I? I haven’t been around since…nineteen canteen. I am NOT WORTHY. I can’t travel back in time. I can’t start my fan journey from the point that I wish with all the hindsight in the world I *could* have started it from! 

In Gordon’s post, he asked what our favourite fan images have been so far… there have been a few for me. And one of my own. It’s not even the best photo but it has a significance for me that I feel reluctant to elaborate on. I wanted it to say something to me within the context of what is going on in it. For one – Jim is smiling – I can’t express how important that is because I genuinely feel as if I don’t really give him many (any) reasons to smile. I’m smiling too, but I otherwise abhor the way I look in the photo. I didn’t even care about the photo ops on the meet and greets…they were only ever a means to an end of getting a fleeting bit of time in the presence of someone I wish I could be allowed to have all the time in the world with. 

Other than my own crappy photo, it would be this one (below mine). I just like the atmosphere of it, and the anonymity. It was taken in Porto in April.


Off Topic: A Day Out In The City

I hadn’t been in the city since coming home from England after the Blenheim gig. And prior to that? For some time to hang out in there? Dunno when the last time was… the end of May, probably. My afternoon out with Michelle for her birthday.

Promised myself a day in there all week while the house was Birdyless. It didn’t happen until yesterday, the day of her return. Demotivation has taken quite the stranglehold of late. I guess having had Covid has not helped the situation at all.

It’s horrible to know what you need to do to get better but…you just feel so…unable to enact the change! That’s what true depression does. Nothing in life incentivises, no matter how much you are wanting it to.

The study definitely has its negative sides, as it allows me to be physically lazy and have the excuse of not getting out “because I’m studying”. Except, right now I’m not even doing that, either. Still not got back to it after completing my assignment. And I have yet another to submit in 10 days time. Another one I am not looking forward to doing.

Anyway.



Yesterday was lovely. We (myself and the OH) saw a film called Brian and Charles at Glasgow Film Theatre. What a beautiful, heart-wrenching, yet ultimately uplifting film it was. I think you need to be a real empathetic soul to appreciate the quirks of it. I loved it. It’s just beautiful.



Afterwards was a quick wander around Locavore in Garnethill, enjoying a coffee “al fresco”. As we made our way over, I noticed a sign for St Aloysius Church just up around the corner back on Rose Street. The banner read “open every day”. I thought, well if it is, let’s go and have a wee keek.



Well…I was bowled over. Those Catholics…they sure know how to decorate a church! I can only assume from what was inside it all dated post-reformation? I do love the iconography. Many saints acknowledged, from St Ninian, to St Columba, St Margaret, to St Mungo – with small statues of St Theresa and St Anthony. I couldn’t help but think of Alex Harvey with the “please do not touch me – St Anthony” wording underneath the statue (although I think Alex would lose the ‘not’ in the wording. Lol).

It was a lovely afternoon. Various photos following. Click on smaller images for better views…


Summer Swag



Have acquired these over the past few days and looking forward to devoting some time to them very shortly. Already have spent some time perusing the Bryan Ferry Lyrics book. I didn’t realise there was a foreword in it and a short piece by Bryan himself.



Mother Of Pearl has been a firm favourite since my very first listen to it. Over You was my favourite Roxy song before delving into their catalogue some time back – fuelled mostly by Jim waxing lyrical about Bryan and what a consummate performer he is.

I was unaware, really, that Bowie was that much of a fan. Dunno why. And it’s been a lot of David’s more wordy and wonderfully intricate songs like Cygnet Committee, The Bewlay Brothers and Teenage Wildlife that have been particular favourites of mine over the years. I have always found a certain link between Cygnet Committee and Mother Of Pearl, if for no other reason than to be determined to know the songs well and recite the lyrics word for word. And well, this piece in the book really DID make my day. For like I had done with Cygnet Committee, I was determined to know Mother Of Pearl ‘off by heart’. To read that about David was just so wonderfully endearing.



Eureka Day! The Assignment Breakthrough

I’ve had a breakthrough today. A ‘Eureka’ moment, so I’m thinking about this (pic below) right now….just for now. I’ll have to erase it from my mind shortly and get on with the task at hand. I feel ssoooo driven today now. And soooo capable! I can actually feel it. Almost a CONFIDENCE that I can do this assignment now. It’s only taken SIX WEEKS! Jeez-o!

EUREKA!

Christophe in Cognac

Anyone going to see Simple Minds next week in Cognac in France will also get to experience this wonderful photographic exhibition by Christophe Duron.

I got to speak to him briefly after the Paris gig and he was really excited about this. Who could blame him? It looks great and he has taken some fantastic photos of Jim and Charlie in particular.

As a say, if you’re in Cognac for the gig, make time to have a good keek at Christophe’s fab photos.

Sentimentalities…

Earlier in the year, Christophe, from the wonderful, City Of Light, a French Simple Minds tribute band, got in contact with me about the badges I had been sent of my ‘art’ by a lady named Samantha. I told him I was happy to send some to him.

It’s taken a while due to there still being some Covid restrictions about for City of Light to be getting back to gigs. Christophe had let me know the badges arrived safely and he would wear them when performing. Only recently did I see some wonderful photos with him wearing one of the badges I had sent. You’ll see a couple of photos below.

Well, today Samantha saw a photo of Christophe meeting Jim at Tilloloy and he is wearing the badge again. How wonderful is that?! I was already so honoured that Christophe wanted to wear badges of mine, but for him to be wearing one meeting Jim? Just lovely. It made my day!

Thank you, Christophe. And thank you again to Samantha for having made them and send them on to me. I’ll be forever grateful. You definitely made Blenheim one of the good memories. Thank you ❤️

Corrected Thing…

His Master’s Voice informed me that I had one itty bitty bit of the lyrics to Vision Thing incorrect…so, I have altered it.

Thought I was in a Covid fug when I saw the correction there for me. Lol. I received no notification of it.

Anyway…tis fixed.

From The Sickbed…Visual Heaven

This is my medicine. This gorgeous creature. These rare ones from the Mojo spread are wonderful. I have a lot to thank Tom Sheehan for. Tom capturing Jim in front of a Canadian flag back in 1982 changed my life immeasurably some 34 years later. I will be forever thankful.

The other by Peter Anderson is a great action photo.

On the morning I was travelling down to England, I had this thought in the shower (I tend to have a number of thoughts in the shower…not all of them clean. Lol). I was thinking about how Graeme Thomson had referred to Jim (and his performing style back in the day) at the reading/conversation with John Dingwall at the Mitchell Library as “feline”. And I had these images in my head…

And then these words came to my head. And I kept saying them over and over so I wouldn’t forget them and then, once I was out of the shower, I could write them down. Of course I forgot and only remembered once I had got to England and had nearly arrived at my friend Ruth’s house. Lucky my phone has a little notepad app. I quickly typed it out…

Hypnotising: Like a swaying cobra ready to strike if you’re caught not paying attention.

L. Read, June 17th, 2022

That photo by Peter Anderson….that’s the cobra coiled in the wicker basket, the music working its magic to have him swaying out of the metaphorical basket to hypnotise the crowd. Jesus! He’s divine…

I’ll enjoy my Covid induced fantasy. Thank you! 😜😉

I’m grappling with whether I should just put the whole Mojo article up but I think I better wait until the next issue is available. In the meantime, apart from the article itself, and the piece on the new album (and Jim calling his dad a count – minus the ‘o’ – I love it when it’s used as a term of endearment. Lol) these photos, along with Jill’s magnificent cover photo, are my faves.

Oh…there’s a point. I’ll post Jill’s words from within the opening pages of the mag. She said a very lovely thing. Read below.