Thursday, 31 December 2015

31/12/15 - So long 2015.

Do you get nostalgic and reflective at New Years? It seems like this post is about to.

Whatever ups and downs you have had in 2015, I hope as it comes to a close you can find someone who you love, if you're with them or if they're at the end of a phone or keyboard and let them know it.

I hope you find every happiness in 2016, I'm off to make a phone call.


Wednesday, 30 December 2015

30/12/15 - 2015 by the Silver Screen.

Today I went into Newcastle for the first time since being back in the North-East and it was a joy to be back. I might be biased but it's still very much my favourite city in the UK, especially when I ran into so many familiar faces whilst I was there. Whilst I was in Newcastle I intended to finally see Carol at the ever wonderful Tyneside Cinema but seemingly a full audiences worth of people had the same idea before me so that will have to wait.

But for the films I have seen? It's been a strong year! However much like my music list yesterday I know that there is a lot that I've missed out on that could and probably should be on this list, but I'm sure i'll get round to them eventually. But in no particular order, here goes:

Inside Out (Dir. Pete Docter & Ronaldo Del Carmen)


Mad Max: Fury Road (Dir. George Miller)


Ant-Man (Dir. Peyton Reed)

The Lobster (Dir. Yorgos Lanthimos)

 What We Do In The Shadows (Dir. Jemaine Clement & Taika Waititi)

Diary of a Teenage (Dir. Marielle Heller)


The Martian (Dir. Ridley Scott)


While We're Young (Dir. Noah Baumbach)


Tomorrowland (Dir. Brad Bird)


and yes obviously...

Star Wars: Episode VII - The Force Awakens (Dir. J.J. Abrams)

But that one isn't a surprise, right?!


Tuesday, 29 December 2015

29/12/15 - 2015 Jukebox.

There have been some great new records this year and I've tried to keep up with them as much as my wallet would allow it. You can probably easily draw a line between how much I've listened to BBC 6 Music this year then how much I've spent whilst knocking round some of London's finest record shops. Here are the ones I've enjoyed the most in no particular order, I'm sure there are plenty I'm missing and will catch up on soon.

Anyway, get your ears round these then get to your closest record shop!

Father John Misty - I Love You, Honeybear

Sleater-Kinney - No Cities to Love

Will Butler - Policy

Nadine Shah - Fast Food

Sleaford Mods - Key Markets

Du Blonde - Welcome Back to Milk

Belle and Sebastian - Girls in Peacetime Want to Dance



Public Service Broadcasting - The Race for Space 

Gaz Coombes - Matador 


Beach House - Depression Cherry


Paul Smith and the Intimations - Contradictions 

Summer Camp - Bad Love

Ryan Adams - 1989

With a new David Bowie and Suede album on the way early in 2016, I'll see you down the record shop.


Monday, 28 December 2015

28/12/15 - The Instagramable Nine.

I've never been a huge fan of end of the year reflections and resolutions. I try to live in a way where you can always be self reflective and search for personal betterment, no matter the month.

However, the end of the year is handy for saying what some of your favourite films and records have been recently.

Today a lot of people's #2015bestnine have been going around on Instagram and always a sucker for a nice display I've made mine up too!

It sums up a pretty mixed bag of a year and sums up me pretty well too. Star Wars? Check! Records? Check! Hipster juices? Check!

If this in anyway makes you want to check out my Instagram I'd feel awfully flattered!

I'd also totally understand why you'd maybe want to keep clear.

Either way...

Sunday, 27 December 2015

27/12/15 - Winter Walk.

I just got home from about and hour and a half walk around Boldon, and it was amazing. Why is something worth making a big deal out of? Because the whole time I didn't see another person! Whilst that might sound like an awfully antisocial thing to say, after a year of living in London it's definitely a much needed and relaxing change of pace.

However this walk was also freezing so I'm off to watch more Mad Men, preferably under a duvet.


Saturday, 26 December 2015

26/12/15 - A Festive Haze.

The last two days have been a haze of a lot of food, a lot of drink and even a few family selfies.

Not bragging or anything but my team also won the family game of Trivial Pursuits.

Whilst I have continued to rebuild and unpack my life since moving up North I've also bought Lego Marvel Super Heroes on the Wii U and the last season of Mad Men on blu-ray. So basically I might be going missing for a while.

I'll tell Don you said hi.


Friday, 25 December 2015

25/12/15 - Christmas 2015.

I've spent the day surrounded by family and food, and I definitely feel grateful and appreciative for it, also quite full and a bit drunk.

I hope wherever you are, you can find some happiness today.

Much love,

Thursday, 24 December 2015

24/12/15 - Christmas Wrapping and Force Awakenings (with SPOILERS!)

My favourite Christmas song is probably The Waitresses - Christmas Wrapping, however undoubtedly my least favourite festive activity is wrapping presents. This is most likely why I've just found myself sitting at the foot of a pile of presents armed with a roll of sparkly paper, scissors and sellotape. I feel this might take a lot of sellotape. 

This is probably why I've been distracted into watching anything vaguely seasonal on TV and instead am now writing another blog after a day of mainly thinking about seeing The Force Awakens again last night.

On this second viewing of Episode VII I felt I could really take a lot more in and appreciate more of the nuisance involved. It answered a lot of questions but raised a lot more too. Still no sign of Zuvio or R2-KT though!


We need to talk about Rey.

The whole Mary Sue argument seems a lot less founded after a second watch generally and I also think I've got my opinion about her family line figured. Initially I had several ideas swirling round but now I think it has to be a connection to Luke.

First of all she is abandoned on desert planet (and seemingly being watched over by the Alec Guiness like genuine class of Max Von Sydow), she seems to have Luke's X-wing helmet and a lovely little X-wing pilot doll too, her vision at the castle happens when she touches Luke/Anakin's lightsaber, and then there's everything we see and hear in that vision Luke, Obi-Wan (Ewan McGreggor and Alec again!), Yoda and finally R2 awakens up when she arrives at the resistance base, who knows the presence of a Skywalker better than our little Astromech Droid?

But then again maybe not... Damn it JJ!

Anyway here's the ever wonderful Summer Camp covering Christmas Wrapping, have a great night one and all.


Wednesday, 23 December 2015

23/12/15 - Santa's of Sunderland.

Today I went to Sunderland. For some doing this on any given day might be questionable, but two days before Christmas? Probably a mistake.

For the amount of shops that seem to have shut in Sunderland recently it's kind of a wonder that so many people were out shopping today at all. It's a city I've always had an odd relationship with but ultimately it's just depressing to see it seemingly more battered than ever. Still, it's inevitable to run into some people you know there which reminds you of the charm beyond the brutalism.

This evening I'm off for an evening out with my mam! She wants to see Star Wars and have a Nandos. This is of course the type of evening I can get behind. I'm not actually sure if she's seen any of the films before. Her only question for seeing the film was "does Chewbacca do his sound in it?"


Spoiler: He does.

Tuesday, 22 December 2015

22/12/15 - Left London.

Waking back up in Boldon was a little bit surreal, but it was a lot cold. The timer on the heating is probably something I need to sort out before considering to the impact of the symbolic meaning of moving back to the North East.

Today has mainly been a day of slowly unpacking whilst being distracted by Shrek the Third on TV (a film which I seem to have totally wiped from my memory), but instead of this it'd likely be more interesting to follow on from yesterday's blog and recall the end of my last week living in London.

Like so many of the times I've spent with Cheyenne this weekend consisted of an excessive amount of food! This time it started with a trip to The Cheshunt Tandoori, somewhere I've passed every week this year but haven't actually set foot in. I'm glad I eventually did!

On Saturday we visited the Elvis at the O2 exhibition. This was a fascinating look into one of music's greatest icons stretching from his humble beginnings to his decent into decadence. I think it's still there for a few weeks and it's well worth a visit for a slice of Graceland on the Thames.

On Saturday night Simply Red were playing at the O2 so following the exhibition we left as quickly and dramatically as possible on the Emirates Sky Line cable car. Doing this at night was a beautiful and oddly surreal experience. Like Disney's Soarin' ride but on your Oyster card. We continued onto My Old Dutch in Holborn and Oh My Dutch God, it was amazing. If you think the prospect of a chilli pancake sounds amazing or horrifying, it's something you need to experience. I would imagine my old waistline would be in a lot worse shape if I'd tried this place sooner.

When we got back to Cheyenne's we had ourselves an early Christmas before I headed back home and it was lovely, presents, wine, pretzels and Christmas Vacation! A pure festive treat. This year with her has really been truly amazing and I wouldn't have traded it for the world.

Anyway, my copy of The Force Awakens soundtrack also arrived in the post today, so I'm off to listen to that on a constant loop.

Talk soon,

Monday, 21 December 2015

21/12/15 - Leaving London.

So, I woke up this morning and decided I wanted to start blogging again.

And since today is the day I'm moving back to the North East I suppose it's a good enough reason to as any. It might have made more sense to do it for the last year when I moved down to London but it's a bit late for that now.

The reason I'm moving back to the North is to start a Masters degree in Film Production at Sunderland University, if I actually manage to keep up blogging this time I'm sure I'll get to that...

This last few days in London have been good albeit emotional ones. It started with the emotional payoff of finally seeing Star Wars - The Force Awakens on Thursday then leaving my teaching job on Friday. Anyone who has looked at my online  presence before will no doubt know my passion for the galaxy fardr, far away and anyone who knows me in real life will know I'm more than ready to take a break from teaching. So these two were big ones for me. Neither experience was a let down! This was followed by moving out of the house share I've been living in for the last year and the tension filled build up to finding out if I'd be getting my deposit back; fortunately I did so that's a couple more weeks I'll be able to have food and that.

Then it was on to Saturday and my early Christmas celebrations with Cheyenne. However this was meant to be a short blog entry so I'll write that up tomorrow.

If you've made it this far thanks and feel free to get in touch.