Friday, December 25, 2009


Many, many thanks to Bill and Jenny for hearing my plea...!!

Monday, December 21, 2009

What we did to celebrate Yuletide...

Soon after opening the doors, as promised, at 7.00 pm on 18th December, we witnessed the arrival of the spectre of 'Christmas-soon-to-be'; Berry wobbled in. He didn't look too well and he shied away from any attempts at close physical proximity.
In spite of his obvious infirmity, he bore consumable offerings - sandwiches, separately containing salmon, cheese and ham, all beautifully presented.

He explained, on the grounds of ill-health, that he considered it unwise to stay and share his germs (already shared with Brenda.) We few, present at the time, acknowledged that this was a noble, considerate and generous gesture, far beyond the call of duty.

Thank you, and well done, Berry and Brenda. Get well soon!

Two near-disasters occurred. I realised that I had lost the paper plates, plastic cutlery and napkins that had been ordered on line for the event. Fortunately, some extra ones had been discovered in Jane's domestic 'war cupboard'. At the same time we found that a string of festive lights failed to function. David drove Jane's credit card, accompanied by Jane, to Tesco, at great speed. Two sets of coloured lights were procured at half-price before they were gone. Our customary ambience was thereby restored.

Participants (eventually totalling 30 people) began pouring in, and exchanged greetings, cuddles, occasional kisses (no tongues), and generally shared the goodwill of the season. Ken came dressed as (brought) a Christmas tree.

Entertainment commenced with a rendition of God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen, led by a cleanly-shaven David, very soon after 8.00 pm, which is the best we've ever done for a 'prompt start'. Doubtless, our MC will near-accurately chronicle all the musical offerings in our singaround format in due course.

We were honoured by the presence of two distinguished guests, one of whom represents the operators of our venue. (I have to respect her stated desire for anonymity in this blog, and avoidance of unnecessary references to the host organization and the venue. Hence this guarded wording, but you'll know who/what I mean.)

Just before half time, David delivered a short and sensitive speech of gratitude to this person, and to the organization. A charitable donation from club funds was made, along with presentation of a magnificent bouquet of flowers. The aforementioned anonymous person graciously received these and went on to make some very nice comments about our Friday gathering, saying, “We are pleased to have you.” WOW!

Then we proceeded to partake of a diversity of food which many had brought along to share. For some, that was the best part of the evening. We pulled crackers and begrudgingly donned our silly paper hats. Consumption of intoxicating liquor was barely concealed!

Little time was left for music, but David’s cunning plans (and a slight over-run) meant that almost everyone was offered another opportunity to perform. Our guests simply said, “Pass,” but politely stayed until the end to enjoy Ray's delightful closing performance of The Happy Wanderer.

It was a splendid evening. The milk of human kindness (Shakespeare, W., 1623, Macbeth), but no real body fluids, were shared. Our appetites for food and music were satiated.

Many thanks to all who attended and contributed in whatever way, even if that simply means 'being'!
In particular, thank you, to David for your expert MC-ing, to Lynda for coordinating food, to Ken for being unusually well-behaved, and again to Berry and Brenda for not sharing their bugs, but whose sandwiches were well received. Finally, but not least, to all those good souls who stayed to help with clearing up.

God bless us, everyone! (Dickens, C.,1843, A Christmas Carol.)

Please note...
We will not be meeting at the Guide Hall on 25th December.
However, we anticipate that their will be a 'critical mass' to enable us to meet on 1st January.
('Critical mass' does NOT imply a religious ceremony, nor impending nuclear meltdown!)

Any similarity to real characters, living or dead, in this post is entirely coincidental.
Opinions expressed herein are not necessarily shared by anyone at all!

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Being the Eighteenth of December 2009...

God Rest You Merry Gentlemen: David+Full Cast
I Wish I Was 18 Again: Paul
Gabriel's Message: Mave
Fagan the Cobbler: Bill 1:1
Santa Baby: Maggie
The Story of Christmas Dinner/Silent Night: Mick
Scarlet Ribbons: Margaret
The Good Old Way: Colin/Jane
? : Jane
A Christmas Carol: Ken
Itsy Bitsy Teeny Weeny Yellow Pollker Dot Bikini: Lynda/Paul
The Blacksmith: Anne
? : Mike P.
Walking In the Air: George
When A Child Is Born: Jasmin
Good King Wenseslas: Lorna
I'm Dreaming of a White Christmas: Ray
Troica: Mick
Lambskin Carol: Jenny/Bill 1:1
I Want a Hippopotamus for Christmas: David
Will the Circle Be Unbroken/Jingle Bells: Mick
? : Paul/George
Steal Away: Maggie/Colin
Sleigh Bells: Mave
Jenny: Mike P.
? : Margaret
A Very Berry Christmas: Ken
Famous Blue Raincoat: Jane
Shepherds Arise: Colin/Bill 1:1
The Brash Lad: Lynda
The Little Drummer Boy: Mick
Flemish Carol: Lorna
When the Snows of Winter Fall: Anne

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Being the Eleventh of December 2009...

Come All Ye: David
The Lark in the Clear Air: Colin
Bury My Body: Paul
The Wally and the Ivy: Ken
Now I Has to Call Him Father: Mave
I'll Lay You Down: Eddie
Butterflies: Mike/Yvonne
Love Will Tear Us Apart: Mike P.
I'm Bound for the Mountains and the Sea: Lynda
It's Only Love: Jane
? : Ray
4 Drunken Nights: Bill 1:1
Connemara Boat Song: Jenny
I Want to Go Home: Berry
Staggerlee: David
Betsy the Serving Maid: Colin
Father and Son: Paul
The Hole in the Elephant's Bottom: Ken
All Froze Out: Mave
Next Time Around: Eddie
A Winter's Afternoon: Mike
The Mermaid: Mike P.
The Waters of Life: Lynda
? : Jane
Abilene: Berry
The Cucumber Song: Ray
Rink To Me Dink: Bill 1:1/Jenny
When I Fall in Love: Jenny

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Avoid 'Gift Getting Day' Blues...

Have you ever considered guitar playing as an outlet for your creativity..?
Have you ever considered giving a teenager something constructive to do with its hands...
This could be the answer...!
It's a Stagg Acoustic Guitar. It comes complete with a fabric case, tutor and electronic tuning device...
Phine no longer has room for it and is offering it for sale.
Offer prices should start around the £70 mark (see David for further details....)
Good little starter kit for those with time and determination on their hands...

Being the Fourth of December 2009...

In the Smoke: David
From Bolder to Birmingham: Paul
Cruising Down the River: Berry
The Waller: Mave
Chatterton Doris: Ken
My True Love: Mike
The Lincolnshire Poacher: Eddie
Barbary Ellen: Jane
World Without Love: Brenda/Berry
Raglan Road: Lynda
? My Time: Les
Amazing Grace: Margaret
Zeppelin: Mick
Jack Orion: Bill 1:1/Mick
The Wind That Shakes the Barley: Colin
You & Me: David
Noah: Paul
Delila: Berry
A Roving: Mave
Lord Franklin (Parody version): Ken
(nearly) Butterflies: Mike/Yvonne
All I Want: Eddie
Fare Thee Well Dearest Nancy: Jane/David
All of Me: Brenda/Berry
The Galway Shawl: Lynda
Summertime: Brenda
Leaving on a Jetplane: Les
In the Mood: Mick
The Knight on the Road: Bill 1:1
Thousands or More: Colin

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Being the Twentieth of November 2009...

T'was a Lover and his Lass: David
Union Miners: Eddie
How it's Meant to be: Margaret/Yvonne/Mike
Sisters of Mercy: Paul
Babe I'm Gonna Leave You: Margaret
Swing Low Sweet Chariot: Maggie
Westlin' Winds: Anne/Alan
Halcyon Days: Yvonne/Mike
Rattlin' Bog: Eva/Bill 1:1/Jenny
Here Comes the Sun: Les
Joan of Arc: Jane/David
You Are the New Day: Lynda/Paul
Sad Ending: Mick
True Love Ways: Bill 1:2
The Boxer: Jane/Dave
Rose of Allendale: Ray
Mother of Mine: Phine
The Sheep are 'neath Snow : Colin
My Mother Said: Mave
Children In Need Tonight: Ken/Mave
Poor Old Horse: Bill 1:1
Positively Fourth Street: David
Dancing With You: Eddie
Mary Skeffington: Paul
3 Ravens: Margaret
Last Trip Home: Anne/Alan
All Over the World: Les
Joleen: Jane/David/Bill 1:1
Meet Me on the Corner: Lynda/Paul
O'Carolan's Draft: Mick
Half Way to Paradise: Bill 1:2
Hotel California: Jane/Dave
Grandfather's Clock: Ray
Morningtown Ride: Phine
Banks o' Doone: Jane/Colin
The Daring Young Man on the Flying Trapeze: Mave
The Russian Vodka Song: Ken
I Bid You Goodnight: Bill 1:1