Category Archives: 60’s pop

Leaving on a slow plane

I did actually mean to do this blog just over a week ago, on the anniversary, but various things got in the way, mainly my health. But anyway…

2019 seems to have been the centenary of a large number of events. I suspect its because of the end of WW1, and the freedom to use technology for beneficial reasons, and not just to kill as many of ‘the enemy’ as possible. In 1919, if you wanted to cross the Atlantic, you had one choice, you went by ship, and it took more than a week to do the crossing. Nowadays its possible to cross the Atlantic in a matter of 6 hours or less! Certainly, on a jet plane, I would guess (if possible) that St Johns, Newfoundland, to Clifden in the West of Ireland would probably be about 4 hours or so. Heck, I can fly from Manchester, to Los Angeles (against the jet stream) in just under 11 hours.

However, on 14th June, from St Johns, Newfoundland, 2 British RAF Officers, Alcock, and Brown, set off to do something that had never been done before, to cross the Atlantic by plane. 16 and a bit hours later, on June 15th, they crash landed into a bog, close to Clifden, in the North West corner of Ireland. There was a prize of £10,000 for doing this, which seemingly equates to about £450,000 today!

In case anyone is wondering, it took another 20 years before the first Transatlantic passenger flight happened, a matter of months before the start of WW2!

The sad thing for Alcock at least, was that 6 months later, he was dead, at 27. He crashed while trying to deliver a plane to France, and died shortly after, from his injuries. Brown, and his son both actually served in WW2, he as an instructor, his son as a pilot who tragically died in the war. Supposedly that led to his retirement, and a deterioration in his health, so much so that he died 5 years later, at age of 52.

Incredible to think that 50 years later, man landed on the Moon!

I wonder how, 100 years from now, people will travel between Earth, and probably places beyond this planet as well. One thing is for sure, I personally wont know, but I wonder if a reincarnation of myself will do so?

This song has been recorded more than a few times, but in truth, this is the group that are probably most famous for doing so

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Funny how brains can be?

Yes, the blog title is rather apt, as its all about mine! Its hard to believe now that just over 13 weeks ago (as clearly the Tuesday incident was first seizure, in hindsight), laugh for me was relatively normal for me, other than a busted back. The irony of that, and the more calamitous ones on the Friday was that I’ve had less literal pain from my back since then, but my mobility has gone to pieces, so I’m assuming that some connection between my brain, and my spine has got disrupted in some way? All the same, despite knowing it was going to be a while before I got to see an expert, due to the speed of things with the NHS, it was still a bit of a blow when I found out it wasnt going to happen to mid June, but yes, we’re almost there.

As, in fact I found out yesterday afternoon, when I was sat quietly on the settee, when the phone rang, which Eric answered. He did something with the dial (yes, its one of those retro phones, compatible with digital system to dial out, and stuff), and then handed me the speaker. It was some automated call from the appointment centre at the hospital, presumably to confirm my appointment a week later. Thing is, despite it doing the equivalent of dialling a 1, to say I was hear, it didnt pick up. Anyway, when it repeated the question to me, I did the same thing, with the same lack of effect. So the call cut off, presumably the equivalent of a ‘no answer’ or something.

I checked the number we were called from, but all I got was an automated voice saying that someone would call me within 24 hours as a repeat. Anyway, just over 24 hours later, no one had, so I tried the number on the appointment letter I got from the hospital, nearly 3 months ago! But it seems to talk to them, I needed a number that wasnt printed on my letter! So anyway, I got frustrated, tried to explain to him, and my voice disintegrated totally. Eventually he gave me a number for the actual hospital, but I couldnt have called them, my voice was blown by then. Yes, another reason I cant go back to work, clearly, one stressful call and my voice would be blown for hours! Not much good in a call centre!

As for next week, I cant deny I’m looking forward to the EEG, MRI and anything else they might throw at me that way for all the wrong reasons! Oh yes, weird things done to my brain, especially involving electrodes and chambers, cant wait! Yes, dont be surprised if I report that I imagined being brainwashed when the electrode cap was on me, and activated, for sure. As for what I might imagine being done to me, in a MRI tube, lets not consider! Sadly, the former is unlikely to brainwash me, and the latter turn me into a mindlessly obedient robot, but nothing’s perfect. Yes, I would love those, lets face it.

I try to wonder what they might find when they do the tests. Are they just going to decide its epilepsy (though the pills certainly didnt stop the later bout of seizures), or will it prove to be something more serious? Who knows, though there isnt a lot I can do, whatever it is. But I have to be honest, setting the steps to find out will be an absolute blessing, and might stop me worrying just how bad it is. The other blessing being, that once I know, I can work out when, or if I can do a few things I really need to sort out. Photo shoot, holiday planning, offering myself for mad scientist research? (I wish!)

I was tempted to ask a Psychic friend if she could tell me what my fate is, but firstly, I cant afford to call her (she’s in US), and secondly, is there a bit of me that really doesnt want to know? Mainly the former, I’m sure.

So no, I wont be there at the first day of Royal Ascot, dressed up in some posh hat and dress (wouldnt that be fun?), I’ll be at a hospital, in Huddersfield, awaiting my fate. Funny what a brain can do to you, lol.

Talking of which, the video. This song is slightly younger than me, but not much, its from 1965! Its why the film, and the song dont match, its a combined mix, thats all. Love, no idea what that is, but I now know how ‘funny’ brains can be!

 

People are strange?

One of the things I find odd about social media comes back to people watching, and who shows an interest in you. On Facebook recently (last month or so), I’ve got dozens of friend requests, that to put it mildly, are out of the ordinary. They’ve been people I havent known before, had no previous contact with, and the only thing I could even see in common with them would be the Transgender thing.

But even then… I quickly put together that the vast majority of these weren’t the sort of Transgender women that actually had anything in common with me. Admittedly it took a few that I acted as a nominal mother hen to, before I got the connection, but then it started to get regular. Many only with few pictures, so actual comments, and indeed some that seems to do nothing but put up adverts for things they seemingly wanted me to buy. The other thing that crept in after the first few (have no idea if this was deliberate or not?) was profiles that made it very clear they were anti men, in all ways. So anyway, after the first dozen or so got friends acceptance, I started getting very careful, and have since rejected far more than I’ve accepted. Given I’ve not bothered to follow the postings of these people, I havent actually got round to unfriending any yet, but maybe…? Hey, I’m bisexual, have nothing against men at all.

But actually, the one who inspired this blog, isnt from Facebook, but Twitter. People follow you there, and short of blocking them, its hard to stop them doing so. Generally if people follow me, I take a look at their recent posts, and make a call on whether to follow back, or not.

A few weeks back, someone started following me, and her profile had enough to tempt me to follow back, even though I didnt know her at all. It would have been an LGBT issue, but now, a few weeks later, I’m not even sure she’s LGBT! In fact, may well be phobic towards us!

A week or so ago, she went into what, shall I call weird mode. Firstly it was rants against a man that was supposedly making contact with her, after they’d broken up, and that she was threatening to report him to the police. His responses to her postings seemed to suggest he was doing nothing of the kind. She then started to attack the police for not acting on her claims any more. I assume (but cant be sure) that even if they did investigate, they came to the conclusion he’d done nothing wrong, but she doesnt want to accept that fact.

Then this morning, among my notifications to deal with, was what I can only described as a typical TERF, anti trans question about my right to a female passport. Not that its any of her business, but I politely explained that I qualified on grounds of length of time living as a woman, hoping that would satisfy her. Nope! Came back saying it shouldnt be allowed pre op, so just as I was about to just give up following her, I read the last line, in which she claimed she wasnt transphobic! When I stopped laughing at that last comment I checked, and yes, she’d already stopped following me, but of course I have no idea when she did so! So yes, I’ve blocked her, just to be safe.

I know, maybe I should feel sorry for her, it might all be a mental health issue, for all I know? But its no one I know, she lives nowhere near me, so what can I do?

I know, the whole world is full of strange people, just wish a few less were attracted to me, but anyway…?

OK, video time. Back to the old system, blog title is same as song title, what can I say?

Since its nearly time to go… (to the neurologist)

No, hopefully not me going, literally, but yesterday, I took note that the countdown to my neurologist appointment (at long last) was down to 3 weeks to go. In a sense, I’m slightly nervous about what they might find, especially since the recent repeat bout of seizures, but at the same time, I’ll be so glad to know what it is, or at least, hopefully find out what the problem is. I’ll be honest, if its something that means my time is nearly up, then so be it, though that might leave me with one interesting decision to make, but more on that shortly. Of course, it might be that whatever it is, with the meds I’m already on, and maybe something else can keep it all under control, then great. But I must admit, the wait to find out has been pretty agonising, for sure.

I must admit, I knew what the NHS was like, and that means I’m not totally surprised that its taken 3 months from the initial seizures, to get them even looked into, let alone any action taken. Its supposedly free, but in truth, we pay for it with deductions from our wages, but at least we dont have to pay crazy sums to get things to happen, on top of that. Yes, USA, I’m looking at you again. Again, today, I’ve had a friend over there surprised at how long this is all taking for even the first step, and I had to smile. As I pointed out to him, if I had the money to pay for the neurologist, the MRI, the EEG, and heaven knows what else private patients might get thrown at them here, or that you, or your insurance company gets billed for, this would have been looked into, soon after the initial seizures. But it isnt, so…what will be, will be, and no, that isnt the video! I suppose that unless its something that is ‘bad’ by the time it get looks at, that wouldnt have been ‘bad’ in March, does it matter? Well, beyond my worry about it all, probably not.

But yes, lets face it, absolutely, I’m thoroughly looking forward to having my brain wired up to an EEG, and granted, the MRI will be an interesting experience, thats for sure. Fine, its not going to actually do anything interesting to my brain, but a girl can dream. Going to be fun getting my earrings out for the MRI, as they have been in for years, so removing them might be a challenge.

Given the number of medical people who have told me I wont be working again, I’m assuming something is faulty enough to make that a foregone conclusion, when checked over. I dont know if the fact if I’m only 5 years from retirement anyway plays a part in that, in that its not working the challenge, or whether it would be the same if it had happened at 31, and I doubt they will answer that! But yes, hopefully 3 weeks from now it will all be confirmed, and I can stop worrying about it. In truth, yes, the brain is ‘busted’, its not going to work normally again, of that I’m sure. Even on a good day, I cant talk well for long, and on a bad day, dont ask! Besides that, my mobility is now rubbish, about 1000 yards/metres on a good day is about it, and on a bad day, nearly 100, if I’m lucky! So walking for buses/to work, and doing strings of phone calls, no chance!

The other interesting thing over all this, is a pledge I made a while back, which I assumed I wouldnt be thinking about for at least another 5 years, but seemingly… I stated that once I retired, all things permitting, I’d complete transition, most notably getting my bits bobbed, girl style! Yes, I’ve already been reminded about this, lol. In truth, I have no idea that the hormones and other stuff I would need to do (including the surgery) will be compatible with what I will need to take for the brain, but yes, I plan to find out, once confirmed. Yes, I really will! As I said to someone today, it will be nice not to have to worry about what I wear after surgery, in the sense of concealing bits, and being able to flash boobage, because it will all be natural. No, I dont think latex will be in my wardrobe (sadly), but more clinging, and revealing dresses, just maybe…? 😉

But yes, whatever the news, whatever the decision, I’ll just be glad when I have it all checked out, and confirmed. Less than 3 weeks now, I hope!

OK, video time. Feeling wicked, as per the first half of the blog title. Yes, I know the quality isnt great, but its so rare to find Manfred Mann actually singing live, I thought, what the hell, and went with it. Its not hard to find a non live version on You Tube, if preferred.

Sweet Georgia Golf

Though the 2019 golf season started last September (no, don’t ask), this week sees the first ‘major’ of the season, the only one that has the same home every season, the Masters, at Augusta, Georgia.

Its fair to say that until recently, the people who run golf at Augusta were a little behind the time, would be putting it mildly. The first to break the race barrier at the golf course, 1975, and only then because they had no choice, because he’d qualified for the Masters. Just imagine if they said Tiger Woods couldnt take part, well… 1990 saw the first African American member, only after numerous complaints by members…about letting them in! Lovely people, but this is the deep South, so…?

For women, it was even worse, the first female member, with all the consternation it caused about having a woman on the grounds, not until 2012. The first competitive rounds by a woman at Augusta? Yesterday! Yes, a small number of female amateur golfers were given the ‘honour’ yesterday of being allowed to play competitive golf at Augusta. Wow!

I’d love to say this was the exception to the rule, but it isnt. Muirfield, near Edinburgh, only permitted women to be members in 2017 when they were told they would be taken off the Open circuit if they didnt. Even then it took 2 votes to ‘convince’ them to agree to this, and the secretary of the course described it as a sad day when they did eventually approve it, what a lovely gentleman, not!

Of course, whats happened now is that the ‘gentlemen’ in charge of Augusta are claiming this as a very special event, and in 1 sense at least, it is. But at the same time, the fact that it should have happened about 50 years ago is irrelevant to them! So congratulations are due to Jennifer Kupcho, for becoming the first woman to win a competitive tournament at Augusta (only last of 3 rounds, for leaders played on course), but Augusta, dont be so proud of being such a dinosaur that its taken you until now to catch up with the modern world.

How to annoy a bunch of grumpy, white, misogynists with a video? Oh, easy!

That was a week that was?

Anyone looking for cheery news, look away now! At least now I know what happened last Tuesday, though fine, I might wish I didnt. Yes, fine, I had a seizure, OK? How do I know this? Well, could be because I had another one on Friday, just maybe? On a Blackpool tram of all places, before I got to wear my ‘Clara Johnson’ dress and all. No, I dont remember a thing, and from what I’ve heard, thats for the better! So yes, the perfect place to spend your birthday, a hospital bed.

The good news, as you might have gathered by now, I live. The bad news, I have a distinct speech issue, which when thats your job, not good. To put it politely, I sound drunk. Considering I havent had alcohol in 18 months, thats not real. But it sounds that way, and when your voice is your job, I wont be working for a while, if not an awful lot longer. Doctor has already signed me off until end of April, and thats only for starters, clearly. Like the hospital staff, when I suggested early medication retirement (I am 61), the Doctor looked at me as if how I could be considering anything else. So yeah, PIP here I come! Oh fine, yes, my co-ordination is dreadful too.

I must say, that apart from one thing, the Blackpool Victoria Hospital was lovely to me, and the others visiting me. That one thing? Well, they stuck numerous canola’s into me, covered them up, then missed one at removal. Yes, its gone now!

So fine, what a week it was, after the week I was hoping for. No, I dont think I’m blaming Clara Johnson’s ghost for events, though I do wonder…? Probably the end for speaking roles, unless things improve dramatically with my voice, but makes me perfect for mannequin roles, or full body suit, non speaking parts, just saying…

Oh, do you want the biggest irony, the seizures have improved the state of my back! No idea why, but its true! But if its one, or the other, then yes, I’ll have the bad back! So yeah, that Clara Johnson moment remains a challenge!

OK, video time. Not quite as old as me, and yes, my dears, this is an old fashioned jukebox, complete with single record… But yes, its definitely been…

A little bit of me, and a lot of them

Its funny how things work out, lunchtime, I was trying to work out what I was possibly going to blog about tonight. By the end of the afternoon (sadly, in this sense at least), I’m having to choose from 3!

Though I seemed to own a few 45’s from as early as 1962 (whether they were my purchases, or records bought by my parents that just ended up with me?), my main record buying era seems to have started around 1964, and principally from one store, Boots, in Chatham. Yes, in those days Boots had a big record selection, and even had those booths you could listen to the record in before purchase. My, how things have changed. I was taken in the store at the end of Saturday’s shopping expedition, and allowed to choose 1 single to buy, every time we went in there.

I remember limits, mind. For some reason best known to them, my parents wouldnt let me buy Beatles singles with their money, and to this day, I never have! Did buy Wings singles, a John Lennon single, and possibly others, but never a Beatles one! Was allowed to get covers of their songs though, but I’ll never know the logic of all that now. Oh, and crazily, the Kinks were fine!

The first time this child saw a pop group on TV, other than the odd early Top of the Pops, was a manufactured band from the US, acting in a zany manner on the TV. If anyone hasnt worked out I mean The Monkees, shame on you! Fine, I didnt know, nor care that they were manufactured, and never played on their early records, but fine I loved their sound. History is known, they soon rebelled against the tight reins over them, produced their own music, some of it pretty weird to a young child, and I lost interest when it went off TV.

But somehow, despite everything, in various shapes and forms, the music lived on. Mainly the early commercial stuff admittedly, but they kept going. People left, people returned, Nesmith played sometimes with them, but mainly not. Then, a few years ago, as is inevitable when battling against Father Time, the first of the original band to pass away happened, Davy Jones. Today, sadly, came the announcement of the second one to pass away, Peter Tork, at the age of 77! I know, I’m getting old too, but this sort of news just reminds me of that, lol. Somehow I dont think it will make the news, or social media when I pass away!

RIP, Peter.

OK, video time. I dont deny I’ve done more than a few Monkees songs over the years, but dont believe I’ve used this one before, but please dont quote me on that! Live fun, with both Jones, and Tork in the foreground here.

To make me feel like a natural woman?

Start of February is always a funny period for me nowadays, for several reasons. Monday, was the date that would have been my mothers 91st birthday. Before you go all gooey, dont, because she hated the fact I came out as Transgender, and pretty much disowned me for it. Thankfully she’s no longer with us (and hasnt been for a while now), so issue is over, but of course when the 4th February rolls around, its a pretty sore date for me, but one that sticks in my memories, anyway.

Today actually brought me some good news, I’ve got the benefit funding to be able to cut back to working 3 days a week, which will be a major blessing for me, as my back isnt up to even a 4 day week any more. Now I just have to sort out with work on whether I give up Friday, or Saturday as a working day in the near future. Fairly easy on it, both have advantages, both have disadvantages, but I’ll probably just do what suits everyone mutually. But the thought of not having to do 2 days in a row any more will be heaven. Sounds terrible really, but I’m nearly 61, with a damaged spine, and I’ve worked hard for the best part of 45 years, so…

Of course the other significant date in the first half of February, is a week today. Yes, that much over hyped event named Valentines Day. This year I will probably hit 20 years without even a card, unless someone wants to prove me wrong. Strictly, one friend sent me an amusing t-shirt for the day, which I’ve never worn in public (it says Mind Controlled Sex Slave, for heavens sake), not because I dont find it amusing, because it would be fun to be one, but just for the sake of public taste. In truth, its somewhere in my room, but no idea where now! And yes, she was married, with a kid, but anyway…

So yes, challenge thrown down. You dont have to wine and dine me, or send me chocolates, or flowers or anything else that costs money. If you want to, then fine, and let me know via the email address mentioned shortly, but I’m not expecting that. In truth, I’m not even looking for a real card, unless so inclined. But yes, a plain, disabled trans lady, now in her 60’s, would just like something to cheer her up a week from now. E-card, or anything else as anonymous as you wish. Just to make me feel like a natural, cared for woman. (See video shortly). So anyone that wants to be my ‘fake’ Valentine beau, feel free to comment here, or email me at stephmajor8@hotmail.com on the day, and at least make me feel wanted, even if I’m not.

Equally (ha ha), if there is someone who wants me to get a special treat, or be their asexual courtesan, same address will work! I know, I wont even expect the e-card, lol.

OK, so I used this video only about 6 months ago, but the line about natural woman was just too hard to resist!

 

What is their future?

Right, I’ll make the offer loud and clear, and see if anyone will take me up on it. I am off work this week, and I hereby pledge to fill the usual blog spaces for you. Given that I’m not planning on anything more than a relaxing week until Friday (more on that Thursday) other than treatments, I’ve got the time to do more blogs. But if you want them to appear, I need some suitable subject matter, thats all. No UK/Europe politics, but other than that…? No, I dont expect to hear from anyone, but I can hope. stephmajor8@hotmail.com for emails will be fine, if you dont want to join on here.

What struck me on Friday morning, and to a lesser degree, yesterday morning, was the number of children under 5 on the buses I caught. One woman had 3, of different ages, all under 5, or they should have been at school!

And yes, I wondered what their life will be, when they reach my age? What will their retirement age be by then, for starters? Expected life span was about 71 when I was a child, and now its 81! Pretty certain my body isnt going to last to 81, but some of us have to live less than average, lol! But will it be 90 in 60 years time, or more, or less, or…?

Look at phones nowadays, and move them on another 60 years. Back then, you had to book an international call about a week in advance, and you paid a fortune, and were limited to a few minutes, and no more. Now (and I have) I can speak to the West Coast of America, on a whim for the US, and it doesnt cost a fortune, even if you have to pay for it. Yes, I dialled a freephone number, and got connected to the US, crazy stuff.

Oh, and because of where we’re heading with the video, when I was born, no man had flown in space, it was a year after I was born that it first happened. Satellites were just about to be launched for the first time, so watching pictures, as we do now, from the other side of the world, live…wow! Hey, it was such a novelty that one adult worker included the novelty of a satellite in her outfit

space suit

Yes, Sputnik, the first Soviet satellite. And before you ask, would I wear that helmet, of course I would! I would say the full outfit, but I am 60, so if anyone wants to create it for me…?

I’m not even going to try and comprehend what will be the novelty item 60 years from now! One thing is for sure, I wont be around to find out! Will someone be experiencing a past life regression then, and finding me? Interesting thought!

One thing is for sure, there is no way we could even vaguely imagine what life will be on Earth in 2080, so I’m not even going to try. You can assume there will be bases on the Moon, and Mars, and maybe more? Will they look back on our movies, and be amused by how retro they are? Oh, and will they be able to transform humans into robots? 😉

Right, video time. This may look very basic now, but in 1962, this was cutting edge music. Oh, and of course, it also relates to a different satellite! Oh, and at the grand old age of 4, I bought this single!