Wait until next year

Putting off what could be done tomorrow, today

The Hustle

Lambchop are reassuring. They have always been there. I remember reading about them in Melody Maker, way back in my school days, wondering about all those people in the photo, crammed in that room. I remember watching them live many years later, with my wife. They have always been there. And I hope they always will. Read the rest of this entry »

Phoenix Sports 2 Erith and Belvedere 1

Behind the goal, Phoenix Sports vs Erith and Belvedere

Thank goodness for Proper Football. Cup finals and international tournaments are all well and good as spectacles but they aren’t real football. My ideal match doesn’t take place in a gigantic stadium, it isn’t soundtracked by piped-in hi-energy crowd-directing tunes, isn’t played by players cynical and skillful enough to squeeze the joy and unpredictability out of the game. My ideal match takes place in the sort of ground I can wander around, can enjoy a pint in, where I can queue for a burger and watch the match simultaneously, where the smell of the onions is coupled with the spray of Deep Heat, where the soundtrack is a panicked cry at a dawdling centre-half, a grumble from the touchline, a kid kicking his own ball against a fence, oblivious. Read the rest of this entry »

Making up our lives – gardening, writing and “My Roots” by Monty Don

Crocosmia

Recently I’ve heard a fair few people talk about that old curse May You Live In Interesting Times. And Interesting may be one of the more polite adjectives I might think of when thinking of 2016. And when you live in interesting times there is a great temptation to escape. In the past I might have escaped via the bottle, or a YouTube rabbit hole of nostalgic clips, or some daft game on a mobile phone. And I’m not sure any of those are entirely bad, at least in moderation. But in 2016 I have escaped by gardening. Except I don’t think it is just escape. I think it is more than that. Perhaps I should just let someone else say this more eloquently. Read the rest of this entry »

Hanging Baskets

Hanging basket with petunias and fuschias

Hanging baskets are funny things. They feel a bit dated, a bit fussy. Fussy in how they look, very much a construction, an obvious artifice, and so perhaps a little bit jarring when it comes to a natural space like a garden. They are also fussy in terms of maintenance too, with the constant deadheading and watering. I’m forever fussing around them, watering them even when it rains. I have had too many failed baskets. I have learned that hanging baskets crave attention.

Read the rest of this entry »

Deadheading

Roses blooming and about to bloom

I’ve been thinking about gardening a lot lately. I’ve been actually gardening a lot too. This is our fourth summer here and the garden is really only just starting to take shape, and I’m only just starting to take shape as a gardener, albeit a very, very amateur one. Read the rest of this entry »

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