Week 4 – ‘Ashley’

by Frank Hamilton

Since the arrival of Mr. Enormity in week 3 I’ve been trying to get organised but it’s proving difficult.  Firstly I’m a man – organised chaos is the best I can hope for.  Secondly I feel like a donkey – every time I cross one thing off the to-do list something else appears and the carrot is still just out of reach.  I guess that’s the nature of a project you plan as you go along so for now I’ll continue feeling like an ass and follow the advice of a wise, ginger man I got drunk with a few times. ‘Keep on keeping on’.

Looking ahead next week’s going to be even crazier – there’s talk of podcasts and physical CDs, not to mention the first monthly EP release on iTunes which (thanks to the folk on Facebook) will be called ‘January’.

Speaking of podcasts, I listen to them now and again but I’ve certainly never made one and I don’t really know where to start. I’m also shitting a proverbial brick at the thought of having to talk for 5 or 10 minutes (30 seconds between songs is more than enough) so if anyone’s got any good ideas on that front speak up!

Okay, enough fretting about the future.  This is the present and here is week 4…


The Blurb:

Last week I told you about my home town.  This week I’m going to tell you about someone in it.

Her name was Ashley and she was one of the ‘bench crew’.  I don’t know whether it was the location (just a stones-throw from the library) or the bin sitting in close proximity that turned an ordinary wooden bench into something far greater – but whatever the reason it was where all the cool kids hung out.

At the time I thought you needed to be really attractive or really funny (or both) to warrant standing by the bench every lunchtime but now I figure it’s merely a question of ‘balls’.  Having the confidence (or at least faking the confidence) to walk up and act like you belong more or less means you DO belong.  It’s so simple when you know how.

Ashley well and truly belonged.  She was good looking, funny to boot and almost certainly wasn’t faking the confidence.  All the guys fancied her and I was no exception but there was a massive flaw in any potential plans I had going on…  I wasn’t 4 years older and I didn’t drive a souped up Vauxhall Nova.

As with most schools there comes a time when certain older guys start cherry-picking the younger girls.  At this point I realise the different ways in which ‘cherry-picking’ could be interpreted – safe to say that was unintentional but I see no reason in changing it –  not least because it’s probably true!  I’m digressing again…

So Ashley met an older, tracksuit wearing, Nova driving gentleman (who could only be described as a meathead) and never looked back.  I won’t lie and tell you I was heartbroken when news of their engagement spread but I do remember questioning a lot of things.  Why would someone so promising settle for something so hopeless? Why didn’t someone stop her? What does a meathead eat for breakfast?

I’ve only ever found out the answer to one of these questions – eggs.  Eggs are what a meathead eats for breakfast. Part of me wonders why (but i’m definitely not bothered enough to ask).

This week on the recording front it’s the standard acoustic, piano, glockenspiel combination – accompanied by me hitting my desk with some brushes and thwacking a tambourine.  The guitar in the middle and at the end is a bit different  – I couldn’t find a plectrum so I turned up the delay and used a 10p piece instead. It’s quite quiet in the mix but it reminds me of Glasvegas.

The gorgeous Rosie Hemming-Lowe also came round yesterday, lent her voice to proceedings and explained how to cook rice properly (apparently you shouldn’t stir it).  Thankfully she appears to be easily bought with tea and biscuits so I’m hoping we’ll hear more from her soon.

Favourite Lyric:
Right now it’s 3:13am on Friday morning and even I’m starting to feel sorry for my brain.  Do me a favour and pick your favourite lyric (and why) in the comments below or via the usual Facebook or Twitter channels.  I’ll pick the one I agree with, update this later on and promise to be more organised next week! Until then…

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