Hello again. Miraculously we’ve made it past the halfway point in the year, although admittedly it feels like a lot more time has passed. Months effectively haven’t existed for a little while now, with all the weeks just blurring into one continuous sequence.
It’s also strange to think that we passed 100 days of lockdown in week 15. That seems to have gone by quicker than I’d expected, although I know for many that time will have dragged terribly, and certainly early on I found it difficult like everyone else. But I’m glad I’ve been able to settle into a new routine and adapt during that time. Connecting with friends, homeworking, blogging, music, TV and film have all got me through it, and are continuing to do so.
So I hope you’re all continuing to keep safe and well. Our lockdown measures here in England have been eased significantly further again, and the government have ended their daily briefings, but as the virus is still in circulation we all have to remain very cautious. There will inevitably be local outbreaks, which may lead to lockdowns of certain towns and cities as and when necessary (as Leicester have already found), but we just have to hope the entire country won’t be shut down again. The most vulnerable people who are still shielding will have to remain indoors until early August, when they can finally go out again if they feel ready to do so.
Regular readers will know that my mother and I have been voluntarily shielding, even though we’re not explicitly required to do so, for my mother’s safety in particular. In recent weeks I have been getting out a little bit more though, and Mum’s been at once, as I explain during this post. It’s just around the local area though – I still don’t intend to use public transport for the time being, even though there are safety measures in place for train travel, as the risks still feel too great and there isn’t anywhere that I need to go.
So here’s my latest update on the things I’ve been doing and enjoying over the last few weeks, with accompanying videos for weeks 13-14 & 15-16. None of it is sponsored to appear here, but I was paid to attend the CXcon event as you’ll see. I hope you enjoy looking through it all!
- Out & About
- Photographers’ Gallery: Against The Light
- Doctor Who
- Rube Goldberg Machine
CXcon Accessibility Panel
On 30 June – day 100 of lockdown – I was paid to take part in an online panel discussing the do’s and don’ts of designing for disability (relating to the accessibility of websites, apps, games, etc), with 3 other disabled people. The moderator was James Moore from The Independent, who was asking questions of Vivek Gohil from Uncanny Vivek and Matthew Johnston from Thoughtworks as well as myself. We all have various sensory and physical disabilities between us, so we had a good variety of experiences and ideas, and we were kindly paid for our time too.
It was a really enjoyable and interesting discussion, forming part of the day’s CXcon event. It aimed to inform and educate businesses about how they can improve the accessibility of their products and services and why it’s so vital. And it was a great success, as it was very well attended online and had a lot of good feedback. We had some good questions coming in from the audience after our panel too.
So do check out the video of our panel discussion, along with all the other sessions from the event, and please do share it around. Also don’t forget to check out my previous post on The Big Business of Digital Accessibility for more of my thoughts on the subject.
Aniridia Network Conference
21 June was Aniridia Day, which was celebrated by people from all over the world. So it was only appropriate that we held the UK’s Aniridia Network Conference that day, which replaced the European Aniridia Conference that has been postponed until next year. And despite being the first Zoom conference that we’ve ever tried to run, it went very well, with a great variety of speakers and plenty of discussion amongst the attendees. Thank you to everyone who took part!
I was only half paying attention, mind you, as I was busy on social media all afternoon promoting Aniridia Day and the various different presenters at the conference. But I do now have the full recording, from which I’ll be editing selected sections for publication on the Aniridia Network’s Youtube channel over the coming weeks, enabling me to watch them more closely in the process. So keep an eye out for those videos if that interests you.
And talking of Youtube, do also check out the video Living with Aniridia & My Top 5 Aids, recorded by Visually Impaired Designer Angela to mark the occasion.
The day before Aniridia Day was Nystagmus Awareness Day, organised by the Nystagmus Network, which many people celebrated online to help raise awareness. The charity have also been posting interesting articles on their website recently about topics including Lockdown and Homeschooling.
But, most excitingly, there was a great BBC Radio 4 Appeal for the Nystagmus Network, hosted by Richard Osman, who has nystagmus himself. It was wonderful that they got such publicity and awareness on a national scale like that, so please do give it a listen.
Scope: Streaming Services Review
I’ve also been involved in another project by Scope’s Big Hack project, following on from the media appearances I made last year about The Big Business of Digital Accessibility. This time they’ve been reviewing the very varied accessibility of online video streaming services, and talking to disabled people including myself about how it affects us. It is frustrating when you can’t fully enjoy, or can’t watch at all, certain films and TV shows because websites are difficult to read and navigate, and there’s been no provision for captions or audio description.
For example, I’d love to watch Game Of Thrones, but I’m rather put off by the fact that NOW TV don’t provide audio description on any of their content, so I know a complex show like that might be very hard to follow. It’s all the more disappointing when I know the TV broadcasts of the show did have audio description, so the audio tracks are clearly available. Consequently I’m much happier to stick with places like Netflix, Amazon and BBC iPlayer who are prepared to make the effort to provide AD on some of their titles, because they have made an effort to be accessible. There is still a lot more they could do, of course, but they’re pretty good in comparison to some of the others.
To find out more, check out The Big Hack’s League Table & Analysis of the big streaming services, their views on which are the Best Services For Accessibility, and the feedback from their survey of disabled people about their use of such services.
RNIB: World Upside Down
The RNIB have recently launched their World Upside Down campaign, aiming to raise awareness of the fact that the various changes in the outside world have turned things upside down for many people with sight loss. There are some in the sight loss community who have been able to adapt, sure, but for many this “new normal” is very difficult and fills them with anxiety for all sorts of reasons. So we just want the public to be aware, so they can keep their distance and offer help in appropriate ways – none of which is difficult, it’s just something to be mindful of.
To get the point across, the RNIB cleverly turned all of the adverts upside down on the huge Piccadilly Circus video billboard, thanks to the generous cooperation of various companies. They also encouraged people to turn their profile pictures upside down on social media, which a large number of individuals and organisations did (including myself), and they posted a World Upside Down Quiz to help people understand the impacts and what they can do to help. Plus they’ve posted a video about how to socially distance when visually impaired. So they’ve been sharing a lot of useful information.
And on a similar note, there’s also an awareness campaign by Sight Loss Councils called Distancing Blind that you can get involved with too.
Alex Brooker: Disability And Me
Alex Brooker’s documentary Disability And Me was a fascinating and moving insight into his life, where he spoke candidly about his experiences and feelings, had interesting discussions with his mother and friends, and paid a visit to the Scope helpline. It’s had a great reaction and raised important awareness, and I encourage you to watch it if you haven’t already, regardless of whether you’re disabled or not. To accompany the programme he’s also been interviewed on the Cabin Fever podcast by BBC Ouch.
Out & About
During the first 14 weeks of lockdown, I only went out twice to get a few items from the local supermarket that we didn’t get in our online deliveries. That was it. Before that my last proper outings, when I had some nice walks, were on a long weekend from March 14-16, so that’s 4 months ago! But recently, now that restrictions have been lifted and things are a bit safer, I’ve been out a few times.
Firstly, my mother and I attended my Uncle’s funeral, and that was my mother’s first time out in about 5 months, even longer thane me. It was a nice simple service, including the beautiful song Watermark by Enya at one point, which I’d never heard before. Then we all went outside to look at the flowers that had been laid out and chat to one another. People were generally keeping a safe distance from each other, although an old friend of my Mum’s did come up and give her a kiss on the cheek out of habit, and other people seemed to drift a bit closer together as they were chatting, as is natural. But everyone was very safe on the whole, and there have been no infections resulting from the day that we know of, fingers crossed. It’s been 2 weeks, so I think we’d know by now.
Then more recently, over this past weekend, I’ve been out for a couple of long walks. Just around my local area, which all my walks will have to be for the time being. I just decided to go through my local park, and walk up and down the very long main road near us, to see what things were like now. And it all feels pretty much back to normal really. All the shops were open, and there was the usual amount of people and traffic around. The only indications that things aren’t quite normal are a few people wearing masks, mainly those at bus stops, and Keep Your Distance signs on the pavement.
Face coverings will be mandatory for shops in England from 24 July, following a similar change to the rules in Scotland recently. And it makes sense. I don’t have any plans to go in any shops or use public transport anytime soon, but I have bought some masks just in case the need arises. The only thing I really need to do indoors is get a haircut, which I’ll try and sort out soon, and I’ll take a mask with me for that in case they don’t supply one. but otherwise I’ll just stick to outdoor spaces as much as possible. It’s been lovely to get out and about for some strolls again at long last, and I’ll continue to do so each weekend if I can.
The National Theatre At Home project continues to generously provide free shows to watch each week, and recently I tried Small Island, recorded at the theatre last year. I’d never seen it before, and I’ve never read the novel by Andrea Levy or seen the TV adaptation, but my friend Claire recommended it to me, in particular because the National Theatre had provided an audio described version narrated by Roz Chalmers.
So I gave it a go, and I really enjoyed it. It’s all about the immigration of Jamaicans to England, first taking part in World War II, and then moving here permanently, including those who travelled over on HMT Empire Windrush. We follow the story from the perspective of 2 Jamaicans and a lady from England, along with various characters close to them, with all the stories interweaving along the way. The experience changes all of the characters significantly, and of course deals with the impacts of racism, sadly still a hot topic in current times.
It’s all handled really effectively, telling an important and interesting story without getting too heavy, and there’s actually a lot of humour throughout as well. Plus the acting is brilliant from everyone involved. The staging is really nicely done too, with simple props used to indicate certain rooms and places, nice use of the revolving stage in scene transitions, clever incorporation of projected video on the back wall, and a beautiful music score that was composed by Benjamin Kwasi Burrell. And the audio description really helped me to follow everything, including a nicely detailed introduction at the start to set up the main characters, costumes, locations, etc, just like we get for audio described shows we see in person.
So I’m very glad I saw that show. I wasn’t sure what to expect from it, and it looked like it would be quite long at nearly 3 hours, but it was definitely well worth the time. Although the show is no longer available to view, there is an hour-long discussion about the making of the show if you want to dig deeper, and other clips on their playlist.
Reasons To Be Cheerful
I also saw Reasons To Be Cheerful by Graeae Theatre, filmed at Theatre Royal Stratford East in 2017, and being streamed online until 3 August. This is a fun, lively musical featuring disabled performers, about a group of friends who are desperate to get tickets to see the legendary Ian Dury in concert. As such, the play features many of his songs, performed very well by the cast, along with the great new song If It Can’t Be Right, Then It Must Be Wrong. It’s very funny as well. If you watch it and enjoy it too, any donations to support Graeae’s work would be greatly appreciated.
I first saw the play back in November 2017, and on that occasion I had audio description, which was cleverly delivered by one of the characters on stage via a telephone, as if talking to one of his friends who couldn’t be there. That audio description has also been provided for this online edition, as a separate audio version on Soundcloud. And it’s fantastic that they’ve done that, but it’s not the way I personally prefer to use audio description. As I do have some sight, I like to use the AD with the visuals to marry the two together, as the description often helps to explain or point out details that I wouldn’t have noticed otherwise, allowing me to pay closer attention to them if I want to. So I didn’t actually make use of it, I just watched the video instead, and was able to follow it reasonably well. It’s also great that they supplied captions with the video too.
Photographers’ Gallery: Against The Light
Recently I attended an online exhibition tour for Against The Light by Jan Svoboda, from The Photographers’ Gallery, which was audio described by Caroline Dawson. A couple of people from the museum were also present on the Zoom conference, to give some background and contextual information, and there were about 20 people on the call altogether, so they had good attendance.
And it was very interesting. When I initially saw the images on the website, I wasn’t sure how much there would be to talk about, as at first glance they look like very simple pictures of things like tables. But in learning about the artist and their methods and intentions, and understanding the details like the items they captured, the wear and tear of the photos, and even what’s on the backs of the photos, it made more sense and was quite enlightening. We were therefore given a great insight into Svoboda’s work from the 4 images we looked at in depth.
So thank you to Caroline for delivering the audio description and inviting me to the event. There isn’t a recording of the tour, but you can listen to audio descriptions of each image on the exhibition page.
A Monster Calls
I rented a couple of films on Amazon this past weekend, the first being A Monster Calls from 2016. I saw the online stream of the stage play a few weeks ago, which I’d also seen in person in August 2018, so I’d been wanting to watch the film for a little while. If you haven’t seen those old posts, the basic story (based on a novel) is that a young boy called Conor is struggling to comes to term with his mother’s final days from a terminal illness. A monster comes to him on a few occasions to tell him 3 stories, after which Conor must overcome his fear and tell his own story, which must be the truth. It’s a really moving and thought-provoking narrative that we can all relate to in some way.
And I really enjoyed the film. It didn’t have audio description unfortunately, which it could really do with, but I was able to follow it well enough, fortunately. Lewis MacDougall gives a powerful performance as Conor, as does Liam Neeson as the monster, while Felicity Jones and Sigourney Weaver are great as Conor’s mother and grandmother. The whole film is very emotive and atmospheric, and visually it’s stunning, with great special effects for the monster, beautiful animations for the stories he tells, and lovely scenery too. The music and sound are also really nicely done, and the soundtrack features a song by Keane called Tear Up This Town. But complete silence is also used to really striking effect at key moments as well.
So I’m glad I watched that. The theatre show is still better, because the story works just as well without lots of fancy special effects, and it feels even more real that way. But the movie is well worth a watch.
The Call Of The Wild
The Call Of The Wild, recommended to me by my friend Claire, is a new film that was released back in February, starring Harrison Ford, and I really enjoyed it. Set during the Gold Rush of the 1890s, it follows the adventures of a dog called Buck after he’s kidnapped from his home in California and ends up in the Yukon, where the new people and creatures he meets change his life forever. It’s fun, exciting and at times emotional too.
Buck and the other animals in the movie are CGI, and it’s clear that some people feel that this lets the movie down a bit. Maybe it does, but then my eyesight isn’t good enough to judge if it’s any good or not. It looked fine to me though, I didn’t have any issues with it. The film also features Karen Gillan at one stage, who I enjoyed in the Jumanji films I saw recently, as well as being a big fan of her character Amy Pond in Doctor Who. So that was another good reason to watch it, and she was very good in this as well. Plus the film had audio description, which was fantastic. It definitely helped to clarify a few things I wouldn’t have fully understood otherwise. So on the whole I can recommend checking it out, it’s great escapism.
It’s been great to see Doctor Who getting some more attention in America lately, because the series is now streaming on HBO Max, and they’re quite rightly making a big deal out of it. Which has meant we’ve got to see some of the Doctors reunited on screen for interviews. Jodie Whittaker, Matt Smith and David Tennant reunited for a special HBO Max interview, during which we learnt the name of this year’s Christmas special, that was fortunately filmed before lockdown. Then Jodie and David were also interviewed by James Corden and judged a cosplay contest on his Late Late Show. So those clips have been fun to watch.
It’s also been announced that the Blu-ray steelbook for Series 6 will be released on 10 August, continuing on from the previous ones they’ve released, so I’ll naturally be updating my collection with that.
I’ve started looking through some of the various stand-up shows from Nextup Comedy, which features a whole range of comedians, some I know and some I don’t. They have about 170 shows at the moment, a few of which I already own on DVD and some of which I inevitably won’t be interested in given the variety. So there’s not a huge amount that would justify the £9.99 monthly fee (considering sites like Netflix are cheaper and have thousands more titles). You can get it down to £4.79, but only if you pay for an entire year upfront, and £57.48 in one go isn’t cheap.
Those are the prices if you sign up through their website. However, it turns out that there’s also a Nextup Comedy channel on Amazon Prime Video with the same content. This is just a £4.99 monthly payment on top of my current Prime subscription (after a 7-day free trial), without having to pay a year in one go, so that’s much more reasonable. So I’ve subscribed that way, and I’m happy to pay for a few more months while I try more of their shows. But at some point I’ll run out of content and end up cancelling the subscription I expect, unless they update it frequently with stuff I like.
So I’ve started with some comedians I know, and my favourite so far is undoubtedly the wonderful Bec Hill. I’ve seen her do spots at a couple of comedy shows in recent years, so it was great to finally watch a couple of her full performances:
- Bec In An Hour – This 2015 show featured some of her great flipchart routines (including her clever Edith Piaf routine and a delightfully silly song by Jay Foreman about dinosaurs on Westminster Bridge), some great stand-up material, and even an audience member getting their own unexpected moment of fame!
- I’ll Be Bec – This was recorded at the 2019 Edinburgh Festival Fringe. In this show Bec has returned from the future, wearing a Doctor Who duvet cover with the Tardis on it, to tell us what it will be like. Beyond that, I won’t give any spoilers, suffice to say the show doesn’t go where you expect it to, and there are some clever setups that you’re unaware of until they come into play later. It’s brilliantly put together, very funny, and has some thoughtful messages too.
And this week Bec has also made the exciting announcement that she’ll be hosting a new CITV show called Makeaway Takeaway, which is a huge TV breakthrough for her. Knowing her creativity she’ll be awesome, and the kids will love it.
Ed Byrne also has a few shows on the site, including one from 2018 that I hadn’t seen before called Outside, Looking In, so I watched that. And then on BBC iPlayer, just to switch sites for a moment, I saw his most recent show from last year, called Spoiler Alert, which was good timing as it’s now expired so can’t be watched any more (though it will undoubtedly be repeated at a later date). Both shows are very funny, he’s on fine form as always. He also has another show on Nextup called Roaring Forties that I haven’t got around to yet, but I’m going to watch that too.
And finally on Nextup I saw a show by visually impaired comedian Georgie Morrell called Eyecon, which was recorded at her final show at the Edinburgh Fringe in 2019. Her style of stand-up doesn’t appeal to me as much to be honest, and the audience did seem a bit quiet. But she gave a confident and polished performance, and it’s great to see a disabled comedian making a name for themselves in that way, so I hope she continues to get recognition.
TV & Radio Comedy
There isn’t a lot on TV at the moment, but on BBC2 I’m still enjoying the sketch show Comedians: Home Alone, which will finish in mid-July after 7 episodes. It’s been great to see such a variety of comedians on there. And on BBC Radio 4 my mother and I have been enjoying the recent return of The Unbelievable Truth presented by David Mitchell, where comedians try to hide facts about a variety of topics in amongst a sea of lies, and the others have to spot the truths. As you’d expect, it was recorded from people’s homes without an audience, which is strange but it still works.
It’s also been announced that the brand-new Red Dwarf documentary, The First Three Million Years, looking back at the history of the show, will be on Dave in August. It will consist of 3 episodes, each an hour long, so it’ll be quite in-depth. There will be new interviews with writer Doug Naylor, the cast and crew, and famous fans, along with unbroadcast scenes and the best of the smeg-ups that will be largely familiar to owners of the Blu-rays like myself I’m sure. So I don’t know if keen fans like me will learn a lot that hasn’t already been gained from previous documentaries, but there are bound to be a few new tidbits in there, and it’ll be fun to celebrate the legacy of this classic sitcom again.
- Andrew Cotter has given us a nice Behind The Scenes glimpse of working with his dogs Olive and Mabel, whose videos have been delighting people during lockdown.
- A couple of children have brought us some light relief when interrupting news interviews recently, including Scarlett deciding where to place her unicorn and a toddler’s request for biscuits.
- Australian Sammy J has given us an insight into 2020’s Mid-Year Performance Review, which unsurprisingly doesn’t go well.
And finally, here’s another selection of music that I’ve been enjoying.
Queen + Adam Lambert
For quite some time I was never quite sure about Adam Lambert joining Queen. There was a stigma attached to his time on American Idol, as I’m really not a fan of those kind of talent shows. And to begin with when I first heard Adam performing with Queen, I wasn’t particularly struck on him. It was a bit of a shock, it felt too different. Even now it still seems a little strange with him as their current frontman, as it always will really.
Nevertheless, he has grown on me quite a bit recently, and I greatly appreciate the fact that he’s not trying to be like Freddie or trying to be better than him, because nobody can. Adam’s actually very keen to honour Freddie’s legacy and pay tribute to him respectfully, and sensibly performs the songs in the way that feels best for him rather than daring to mimic the great man. Crucially, he’s capable of performing a huge range of Queen songs, which many artists aren’t given the sheer variety that the band have in their catalogue. And he does it very well. I’m liking his performances more these days now I’ve given him a chance, and he clearly has a real chemistry with Brian May and Roger Taylor.
With all that in mind, therefore, I really enjoyed the documentary The Show Must Go On, which is now on Netflix. It explores how Adam’s collaboration with Brian and Roger came about, and the hugely successful tours they’ve had as a result. It’s the first time I’ve learnt about Adam’s upbringing and his journey as an artist, so it really helped me to understand and more fully appreciate why his partnership with Queen makes sense. The interviews with Adam, Brian and Roger are very interesting, and there was quite a bit of footage of them performing together. And there was also, I’m happy to say, a lot of footage of Freddie Mercury performing and being interviewed back in the band’s heyday. His memory was honoured very nicely. So it was a great documentary, I really liked the way it was put together.
Then, for 24 hours only on Youtube, to mark what would have been the end of their current tour, Queen posted a special Tour Watch Party, with a selection of live performances by Queen with Adam. And it was an amazing selection. Of particular interest were the rarities Love Kills and I Was Born To Love You, which the original line-up had never performed live before, a stunning version of Who Wants To Live Forever dedicated to people who had recently died in Orlando, a beautiful performance of Love Of My Life by Brian at the O2 Arena with a special appearance by Freddie, and a fun version of Fat Bottomed Girls with the Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders. And there were many other big hits in there as well, it was a very enjoyable compilation.
And if that isn’t enough, Queen have also now launched a new Roadies In Lockdown series, looking behind the scenes of the Queen + Adam Lambert tours, including footage from their sound checks. So that should be very interesting to go through.
Moving away from Adam Lambert though, and there are a couple of other ways to celebrate Queen at the moment too:
- There are now official Royal Mail stamp collections honouring the band as we approach their 50th anniversary. I don’t intend to buy them, as they’ll be too small to fully appreciate with my eyesight and will just end up tucked away in a box somewhere. But from the pictures I’ve seen, they’re clearly amazing items for any collectors out there.
- Roger Taylor has surprised us with a lovely new song called Isolation, which is all about very relatable feelings resulting from lockdown. Listen to his interviews from Radio 5 and Virgin Radio to find out more.
- Matt Lucas: Thank You Baked Potato – Matt teamed up with cast members & musicians from London’s West End musicals for this fabulously epic version of his charity song. It features some big stars, a whole new verse and great editing, and keep watching during the credits for a few outtakes and random bits of fun too. Matt then brought an end to his promotion of the single by performing a final version with Tom Chaplin, including a thank you message and the total raised for the Feed NHS campaign. It’s wonderful that it’s done so well and that so many big stars have got involved with it. And you can still download the song and buy the book, as well as donating directly to Feed NHS.
- Raise You Up – Performed by the worldwide casts of Kikky Boots in celebration of Pride.
- When You Believe – Sung by fans of The Prince Of Egypt.
- Waiting To Begin – The premiere of a song from upcoming new musical The Rhythmics.
- The Show Must Go On – A cover of the Queen classic by a group of West End Stars to raise funds for Mind and Acting For Others.
- Phantom Of The Opera – There are some fun lockdown parodies out there, particularly ones by The Opera Guy and Hand In It Productions.
- The Holderness Family: If Yacht Rock Songs Were About 2020 – Another of their fun parody songs.
- Tom Scott: Jingle Bells, Batman Smells – Tom’s videos are always really interesting, and this was something a bit different and fun, as he asked people to tell him about the childish reworkings of Jingle Bells they came up with, to see how they varied around the world.
- The Muppets & James Corden: With A Little Help From My Friends – The puppet stars teamed up with James on his Late Late Show to perform this rousing rendition. There’s no comedy or silliness, it’s just a perfect song to bring people together in these times, and I defy anyone not to smile and sing along with it. And if you do want a bit of comedy as well, you can see James being heckled by Statler & Waldorf just before they did the song.
- Hildegard von Blingin’ – They’ve produced really impressive and fun medieval style versions of What Is Love?, Bad Romance & Creep, among others.
- Ukulele Orchestra: The Lovecats – Another delightfully catchy interpretation by this group.
- Def Leppard: Early Years – Following on from my review of their London To Vegas box set, I also downloaded this set as it was all available online, so I didn’t need to buy the physical box. It contains remastered versions of their first 2 albums (On Through The Night and High ‘N’ Dry), with a related disc of B-sides and rarities, all of which I already had from the CD Collection Volume 1 set. But the other 2 discs in this set contain a live show from Oxford in 1980 and their BBC sessions, which are very interesting and sound great, so it was worth downloading to get those.
- Madness: Our House (Madheads Version) – Fans of Madness were invited to submit clips for this special video, recreating moments from the original Our House video. It’s very uplifting, everyone’s clearly having good fun.
- The Rolling Stones: Goats Head Soup (Deluxe Edition) – This new remastered edition of the album will be released on 4th September, and it will include 3 previously unreleased tracks, one of them being Criss Cross, which they posted this week. It’s a pretty cool song.
- Paul Farrer: The Promised Land – The composer has posted more of his music from the soundtrack of this Red Dwarf special on his channel. It would be great if he released an album for it.
- Hauser: Alone, Together – This is a lovely, relaxing performance of 6 classical music pieces, filmed in front of a stunning waterfall.
- Bonnie Tyler & Lorraine Crosby: Through Thick and Thin (I’ll Stand By You) – This is a lovely new song released in aid of the Teenage Cancer Trust, as the charity’s 20th anniversary concerts had to be cancelled this year.
Rube Goldberg Machine
I’ll finish with a video that didn’t fit in any of my other categories above but is very cool, and thank you to Tina for bringing it to my attention. This is the 70 Step Basketball Trickshot by Creezy, which is a huge Rube Goldberg machine, or in layman’s terms a load of different items arranged in such a way to cause a very long and impressive chain reaction, with the aim to get a basketball into a hoop at the other end.
Check out the Making Of video to get an insight into how it was put together and how many takes it took to get it right, as well as other amazing videos like Follow The Blue Ball, The Most Complicated Trickshot Ever, and the many other fun trickshot videos on his channel.
So that’s it for this post, I hope you enjoyed it as always and found a few things of interest within it. But if you want more to read, you may have noticed that I’ve started posting extracts from my old journals, beginning with January to March 2002 and April 2002. I’ll be sharing those in a series of Throwback Thursday posts each week, so I hope you enjoy them. It’s been fun for me looking back at them, they contain various things I’d forgotten about.
And I’ve also got another series that I’m going to start posting very soon. I won’t say anything about it yet, but the posts are much longer and more complex, so they’ll take longer to produce, and you’ll want to read each post a bit at a time rather than in one go – if the subject interests you, that is. It’s about something I very much enjoy, and lockdown’s a good opportunity for me to be a bit self-indulgent. But I hope you like them too!
I’ll continue with these Favourites posts too, of course. But now that things are returning to some kind of normality and there are fewer things to write about online and on TV, this may be a good time to bring them back to a proper calendar month format. So my current thinking is to do my next post in 3 weeks time, to wrap up July, and then return to monthly posts from there, like I used to do. That’ll free up my time considerably, and you’ll have the other posts I mentioned above to fill the gap. So that’s the plan, but we’ll see how it goes, as a lot might happen in the next couple of weeks, you never know!
So until next time, I hope you continue to stay safe and well, and I send you lots of positive vibes if things are difficult right now. See you again soon!
2 thoughts on “Lockdown Favourites – Weeks 13-16”
Even though we are not in lockdown anymore I wish we were. So many people are getting sick here in Florida. Stay safe Glen.
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Thanks Amanda. I hope you stay safe and well too.
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