Category Archives: Blackpool

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…

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Don’t stop year now!

Its funny to think that on my first day, at age 60, was spent dress up as a 20’s Flapper (even more so, if planned dress had fitted) at the Blackpool Film Festival, and the last day of age 60, I’ll be back at the Blackpool Film Festival, this time doing the 30’s chorus girl look! So, one year on calendar, one decade on in look, and I can get my ‘Clara Johnson’ look moment, at 60, just about! I am also working the rest of the weekend there, if you’re in the area?

Question is, how many more? Even more so after yesterday, when I was sat in my room,Β  settling down to watch a bit of the Cheltenham Festival, and then felt wobbly, and…

Next thing I knew, was Eric looking down on me, and asking if I was alright. I resisted the witty compliment, and working out I wasnt fine, given over 3 hours had passed since I was previously conscious. I retired to bed, and apart from bathroom stops, didnt really get conscious again under morning. I feel better now, though thats only relative, not right, but just better. Yes, it makes me wonder how much longer this body is going to last, probably not long? But as long as it lasts the weekend…?

OK, videoΒ  time. What else but one from the Blackpool TV series

 

Power, to the people we want to be

I know, ideally I would have written this on Friday, but like most things in this world, everything cant be perfect! Yes, Friday was International Woman’s Day, something that I wish that one day, like Pride, like Transgender Day of Remembrance, we dont need to celebrate, to make a point to some. Not because its not worth celebrating, it is, but that the need wont be relevant any more.

To be fair, things are a lot better now than they used to be for women, and I mean in terms of events far more recent than the freedom to vote, which of course we recently celebrated the centenary of. Over the decades, birth control, wage equality, and other various issues have been solved, or at least made an awful lot better for women than they were when I was young.

Of course, this is coming from the woman who would love to be the ‘Stepford’ housewife of the 1950’s, running the perfect marital home, and a dream cook to boot. Yes, seriously, I would need the robotic housewife makeover to be able to do all that, believe me. Mind, back then, I would have been able to retire at 60, which might have been handy, given my back gave out at 59 and a half (well, close enough)!

Not that I will be around to see it, but when the women starting out on their working lives now, reach my age, things will be more equal for them. There was actually an IWD event in Huddersfield yesterday that I got an invite too, and a possible chance to make a speech too, but unfortunately it clashed with the 1 Saturday in 5 that I have to work, but hopefully it works better next year, even assuming my back still allows me to work by then! I’ve heard it was popular, which was good news for me at least.

Right, just to let you know, as I will be doing on the other blog too. I’m off the next week (20th is next day I’m working), and with Blackpool, schedule might get a bit erratic during that period. You might get more (if events need it), or, at the end of the week, you might miss out on them too. But tomorrow, and maybe the next 2 days, you suggest suitable material, I’ll write about it, with the obvious exclusion of UK related politics at least! No, I dont expect any suggestions, but…?

OK, video time. The Eurovision song from 1973, in fact! So, power to all my friends, especially female ones, cisgender, trans, or non binary. Fine, every woman, lol! No, I dont mean in the voltage sense, but if anyone is offering…? πŸ˜‰

Be careful who you tease

Yes, 2 weeks from now, I’ll be in Blackpool, and for a few days at least, all the normal dates for blogs may not happen. Not because the internet isnt good in the Guest House I’ll be staying in (it is), but because I suspect I’m going to be a busy old lady for a few days, plus the layout of the room isnt great for things like typing long blogs, but anyway…

Seriously, if you have any chance of being in Blackpool, on the 15th March, you need to buy tickets for ‘That’s Entertainment’ that night, just to see what amazing outfit I’m dressed in. I’m not saying they will be as in the video, but hey, if thats what we’re teased with, as options, well who knows? πŸ˜‰ You can get the greeting, and movie for as little as Β£10, and can get the full works, including the after show party, for Β£20, and no telling what a ‘saucy chorus girl’ might get up to then! Probably not a lot, but the only way to find out…?

For those wanting details of the weekend, and the chance to buy tickets, go to http://www.wintergardensfilm.co.uk/ to purchase.

Last night, the lovely lady who arranges our outfits for the night, teased us that she was looking into what we would be wearing on the night, and posted the video, which is about the last 2 and a half minutes of this, as a tease to us ladies that we would be getting something like these. I think she was expecting us all to say we couldnt wear something like that, but several of us (including me) just said to ‘bring it on’, even more so if including the headpieces. So yes, now she’s probably trying to find these sort of shimmery outfits lol, I just hope she remembers I need something with a bit of discreteness in the genital area, lol!

To be honest, to wear one of those, or similar outfits that chorus girl dancers like Clara Johnson wore, would be absolutely amazing. But fine, I admit it, wearing one of those crazy headpieces would definitely be as much fun to wear. I have worn some crazy costumes over the year (and hopefully will soon wear one more), but never worn anything like those on my head. Must be weird walking in them, but fine, I’d love to give it a try! Now, if someone can download some dancing skills into my mind, within the next fortnight, you have no idea how thrilled I would be!

Oh fine, the video. Feel free to suggest which outfit you’d love to see me in. I think the Hedy Lamarr one could work for me, as would cover up what needs to be covered up, looks amazing, and as for that starry headpiece…oh my!

I have set the video to where the gorgeous outfits start to appear, but feel free to go back to the start, if you wish

Something’s going to stop us now!

Fine, hopefully from here, for a while at least, normal blog service will be resumed. As in, Tuesday, Thursday, and Sunday, other than maybe the odd surprise, or non appearance. Well, for 6 weeks at least, until my next holiday at least. When, shock horror, I’ll be returning to Blackpool again! I’d love to say that hopefully it will be built by then, but that might be way too optimistic. No, not the whole of the town, but they’re currently working on extending the tram route, up to the main station (Blackpool North), so navigating your way around town can be challenging!

This time around was a brief, 2 night stop, as it was Open Day at the Winter Gardens yesterday, and some of us were busily promoting the Film Festival in March. Oh, and possibly digging myself a hole outfit wise for some events at the festival too. No, seriously, bring them on, especially Wizard Of Oz, as well as That’s Entertainment over the weekend. Oh, and yes, got a new photo of me, ooh…

me at blackpool

Little Miss Glamour Kitten, lol! Sharon looked even more amazing, but not posting pictures of others without permission, sorry. Also thanks to Catherine for providing me with the picture.

Poor Eric was going to come and visit me at the Winter Gardens, after his morning out, but failed the maze test, so I only saw him when I got back to the hotel. The only other ‘silly’ moment of the weekend was that some blonde bimbo left her reading glasses at home over the weekend, so I’ve been peering blindly at the laptop, and menus over the weekend. Yes, I moved them on Friday, to put them in my handbag, got called away, couldnt see them, so assumed they were in the bag, ah well, I survived…just!

Ah well, back to work tomorrow, heaven knows how many emails await me! Tuesday sees a benefit meeting, as I try to get sufficient benefit to enable me to cut back my working week further, as the back isnt even holding up to a 4 day week any more. Well, unless we’ve won the lottery, on the syndicate while I’ve been away, but pigs flying seems to be more likely than that, lol.

I might be working like a maniac on Tuesday morning at this rate, to get all the paperwork I will need together. I might have been off, but with 2 sessions of physiotherapy, and all the travel involved, plus all the film work, darlings… Not got as much done as I hoped!

Right, video time. I’ve heard this song seemingly a million times recently, on a car advert doing the rounds at present over here. But it involves a film (not on festival list), and some great mannequin stuff (I would love to do that, if could be arranged?), and something is definitely stopping pedestrians in Blackpool at present. So…

2019, if you’ve got a little time to spare?

OK, if anyone can spot the line of lyrics, I’m impressed. Well, there are a couple who might get it, but otherwise?

In truth, 2019 is probably the least pre-planned year that I’ve had in a very long time. Lets face it, the May holiday is not only usually planned by now, its either booked, or just about to be booked. This year, not a clue what I’m doing! And though September has got some tentative plans, in the sense that both Kate and I have agreed, both health permitting, that we will get together ‘somewhere’ at that point. Its fair to say that it will in all likelihood be either, Oklahoma, or New England, but beyond that…? No, no commitments!

The one thing that is sure, is that before either of those, there will be 2 trips to Blackpool. First one in just over 3 weeks time, which will be the pre-publicity event for the Film Festival in March, on my Birthday weekend. This time, the latter is already planned as a longer stay, from Thursday, to Monday, as I can do work, and enjoy myself for the whole weekend. Numerous anniversaries that week, and a theme of Hollywood glamour, which should all be a lot of fun. Seems quite likely I will get to have a ‘Clara Johnson’ moment on the Friday of that weekend, for which I might now be a little old, but will be a dream come true. But more on that at the end.

Other than those, most of the known events for the year are of the less cheery kind. Firstly, and most obviously, is the state of my body. How long the back is going to last, even on a 4 day week, even with TLC (including that heavenly flotation/sensory deprivation tank), I have no idea! There is also the fact that I now have big issues with 1 wrist, and I have a hunch the other might only be biding its moment, and…? Given that now, with my wrist damage, that I’d have issues preparing, and cooking a proper meal, on top of everything else, I have been told I ought to at least try for PIP (disability related) benefit payments, because lets face it, my mobility, in a stamina sense is also becoming a bigger issue by the month. I’m sort of determined I will get to March (for obvious reasons), but in a serious sense, what used to be a stroll to work is now getting a challenge at the end. Oh fine, it is a challenge, but anyway… If you want a resolution (ghastly things), that had probably better be mine!

Yes, any politician offering to reduce the retirement age for women can have my vote, lol! 61, I’d be thrilled, 62, or 63 I could see as a target, but beyond that, not sure its going to happen? No, I know, not going to happen in reality, but would help me so much.

OK, Brexit, lets try and be diplomatic. Especially given the government are seemingly terrified of having a vote on their escape plan, rolls eyes. I could give my view on the ‘threat’ from the government that if they dont win, Brexit wont happen, and say that not everyone would be sorry if that came to place. Its not what the voters were promised at the referendum (we found that out within a few days), so is it any wonder that hardly anyone, on either side of the fence wants to vote for it? Fine, I voted Remain, but besides all that…

Alright, lets get to cricket. This summer will see the first ever test match between England, and Ireland at Lords, a pretty historic moment for we Irish cricket supporters. Yes, I’d probably have got an Irish passport at the last renewal in truth, but my Irish ancestry is 1 generation too far back for that. Even more I’d love to do that now, as so many others are seemingly doing. Nothing to do with the Brexit chaos of course. And if you believe that…?

Oh fine, you want some silly wishes for the year, I guess? Things I’d love to happen, but are only likely in my dreams?

Lets start off with the obvious one, which actually gives me more issues than work? Yes, travel. What I wouldnt give for a cute flying saucer/space shuttle, if a passing alien reads this, to whisk me to work, without strain, oh please! There are some ‘Just Eat’ adverts on TV over here, where the motorbike delivery people have bikes that fly, wouldnt say no to one of them, either!

Clearly, with my health issues, I’d love a full body upgrade. Chrome robot look would be heaven, but a more human looking fembot body would probably be more advisable. If so, if it can come looking about 20, with pre programmed dancing skills, I’d love that.

Oh, and fine, I’d love that sensory deprivation tank to really mess with my mind, as well as heal my body. Brainwashed, or mind controlled, while in that pod, oh please!

Lastly, a sugar daddy, or mummy (I’m bi, lets face it) to put this ‘Broadway Baby’ in her own apartment, somewhere warm/hot all year round, would love that. But fine, who would want an old lady like me for that, lol?

Right, lets get to the video. That Friday night in March, in Blackpool. One of the show moments is a local dance team, performing from 42nd Street. (At least) 2 of us are hoping to at least make cameo performances on that sequence. Will be the closest I ever get to replicating Clara Johnson without that new body, for sure! No, I’m certain I wont be this good, but some of this might be involved, so…

 

2018, a bit of a drag?

So, as promised, the review of the year starts here. It will finish tomorrow, and then at the start of the new year, I’ll take a look at what 2019 might hold, some of it very likely, some of it unlikely, but might be fun if it does.

2018 actually saw something happen, that I’d never done in my 44 years of working life, I was told not to go to work! Yes, a combination of the fragility of my back, and some very cold, and icy weather saw me put on ‘winter weather leave’ for a few days. It made sense in so many ways in truth, but was still a bit of a novelty to me. But agreed, if I’d slipped over, landed on my back, and especially my spine, well you wouldnt want to think about the potential outcome, lets face it. Pretty sure its likely to happen early in 2019 too, especially given the deterioration in my wrist too, but we will have to wait and see on that. In truth, after about a week of that, I was getting a bit of ‘jail fever’ but it was a very wise move, so kudos to my employers for letting me do it.

While on about work, I started working on an LGBT committee at work, which was definitely a fun thing to do. Yes, was, more on that over next couple of posts.

Something else that happened early in the year was also work related. One of my colleagues got notice of volunteers needed for the Blackpool Film Festival in March, and the rest, as they say, is history! I wont claim it as strictly the revival of my acting career (its more a natural performance thing, no scripts), but it was a moment that led to the return of my time performing in public.

This year, it was a flying visit, arrived in Blackpool on the Friday afternoon, left again on the Saturday morning, due to fate, and a memorable date. Yes, the night of my flapper revival was my 60th Birthday! The works celebration was done a week earlier (would have been anyway), but the ‘house’ version was delayed until the Saturday night, which was why we needed to get back as we did.

Yes, a decade or so ago, that would have been it, retirement, which in truth, the body probably needs already. Now, officially it will be March 2024, though I have my doubts my body will hold out that long, but we will see? If it does, I might plan to retire (or take holiday) from work a couple of weeks early, because as things stand, the Iditarod race will start from Anchorage on 2nd March (restart at Willow on 3rd), and that would be an amazing thing to do, and a sort of dream come true. Nome as well? Well, maybe, but all that is a long way off. More on my preferred retirement option in part 2 tomorrow night.

May saw my return to Seattle for the first time in a few years. A few firsts there. Another state bagged, as I flew in via Las Vegas, so getting Nevada as my 24th state. Hopefully get 25 ‘somewhere’ next September, maybe? Ask Kate on that one, lol. She knows the one I’d love it to be, but its not renowned as the most friendly LGBT state in the US, so maybe not? There are a couple of New England options for that title too, so we will see.

The other big first on that trip, was my first Mariners game. It was memorable for more reasons than one, good, and bad. Good, they won. Bad, disability related issues. To be fair to the club, I complained, got a free ticket in the disabled area later in the week, and a few souvenirs as well, they handled it all very well.

Lastly, in the first half of the year, was a return to Blackpool, for World Pier Day. Again I have to thank a colleague for covering my Saturday shift to enable me to do this. Went back even further in time, as an Edwardian Lady, though I never got tightly corseted, cant have everything, lol. Amusingly, it was also Blackpool Pride day, and though I heard a lot of that, didnt get to see it at all. 2 trips already planned for Blackpool in New Year, but more on that on Tuesday, one of which you may not want to miss!

Well, the year certainly hasnt been a drag, but when this came up in my You Tube suggestions tonight, I couldnt resist this 1930 offering. And yes, a certain ‘fluffy haired’ blonde definitely looks like it could be Clara Johnson!

Viva Las Bradford?

Tomorrow night is that annual tradition known as the Works Christmas Dinner, version, who quite knows? There were a few while at William Hill in Leeds, and this wont be the first Civil Service one, but its certainly a more interesting location than the norm. Why, dinner is at a casino, darlings!

In my life, I’ve been into 2 casino’s, and thats it. The first of those was actually at Philadelphia Park racecourse and casino, and I simply passed through the building on the way to the racecourse viewing area via a lift. Just a way of getting somewhere, never looked at anything. I have also been to the one we’re going to tomorrow night in Bradford, on a Saturday afternoon, after work, with a colleague, to waste an hour between the finish of work, and yes, you’ve guessed it, the works Christmas dinner! Must have been the 2016 version, because I was able to drink back then!

The amusing thing for me tomorrow night, beyond the opportunity to dress up a bit, is that one of the things that we get for our price, is a Β£5 gambling chip! No, I dont expect it to last more than 1 play, lol! And what to play it on, no idea! I suppose that if it was a real Hollywood movie, I would walk up to the roulette table, coolly put the chip on a number, and it would win! But given the most glamorous place I ever acted was the Octagon Theatre, in Yeovil, its fair to say it will lose! Yes, its still there, about 30 years on, so I didnt close it down, lol! In truth, I knew it survived at least until 1999, when I left Yeovil, but have never been back since, so had to check on Google!

No, I dont think its going to get me back into any form of gambling habit, somehow! Beyond the race that everyone in the UK bets on, the Grand National, I havent had a bet since 2013, until now. I dont think I’m going to say I broke that streak for 1 free chip in a casino, lol. Maybe I should get into cool flapper mode before playing that chip, mind? Not that I can smoke (not permitted by law), or drink (not permitted by painkiller pills I’m on), but I can think the part! Oh, and partly look it, at least.

Yes, the hair, darlings! Had it done today, so I’m ‘properly’ blonde again, with a neat layered bob look, and probably the attitude to match? I did actually go under a hair dryer today, but unfortunately it wasnt in the mood to ‘transform’ my thoughts into those of a 20’s flapper! Ah well…

Oh fine, if this is the last blog for a while, you know I broke the bank at Bradford, and have moved somewhere warmer abroad. So yeah, you’ll get a blog again soon, probably Saturday (recovery day after tomorrow), rather than Sunday (out for some of day), but anyway, just saying…Β  πŸ˜‰

Right, video time. Another one from the TV series set in Blackpool, a rather apt song for tomorrow night. Sadly the very dishy David Tennant isnt seen in this one, ah well…

 

No makeup required?

Yes, tonights blog might, ever so slightly, be tongue in cheek, just saying? πŸ˜‰

One thing I’ve come to the conclusion of, is that if I really want to revive my ‘acting’ career, once I reach retirement age, I need to move to the Blackpool area. No, I know, there probably are opportunities elsewhere, if I put my mind to it, but in terms of fun, one off roles, it seems a good place to be. Maybe thats because the lady behind the Winter Gardens Festival Volunteers is just good at going out, and advertising these things, and maybe its just due to the fact that a workmate, and friend tipped me off about them at the beginning of this year, but either way…it works for me.

Yes, I’ve done a couple of things already, and try keeping me away from next years film festival (its my birthday week in March, so work wont be an issue), believe me. There might be at least a couple of us hoping the movie will be a 30’s musical for the outfits, though the audience (and some of the other volunteers) might wish otherwise, lol! But yes, doing my best ‘Clara Johnson’ routine would be a lot of fun! At least 2 of us are trying to get this to happen regardless, so fingers crossed.

OK, back to the title. October 26th (Friday), there is a film showing at Lytham, and they are seeking volunteers to dress up as witches. Yes, thats where the ‘no makeup’ comment for me fits in, as lets face it, witches arent meant to be the most beautiful of creatures, are they? Besides which, it would be fun pretending to be wicked, lol! πŸ˜‰

I suspect I might have played a witch, or a wizard in my time, but just cant put one to mind. However, at the Boys Grammar School, we did ‘that Scottish play’, and I had a minor part, so just maybe I did? πŸ˜‰ Oh god, I must have been in heaven back then, a need for ‘boys’ (strictly, in my case) to play female parts, oh love it! Now I could play a witch legitimately, but…

Sadly, no, its not going to happen, for so many reasons. A good one is that I really havent got the holiday allowance left, as I need to save some days for January, to try and pace breaks for my back, especially in winter, and I think I’ve just about got a week left at this time! Next is distance, doing a trip from here, to Lytham, and back, all in 1 day, not going to happen, especially as we will be required until about 8 pm. Throw in cost, as its the weekend of the Gatsby Dance in Bradford, even more no go!

But yes, when I retire, either at 66 (legal) in about 5 and a half years, or whenever my back gives up the ghost for that much physical exertion (far more likely, I fear) involved in getting to and from work, I might just have to move to somewhere where I can get my acting skills put back to good use yet again., maybe?

Unless any generous benefactor wishes to subsidise a new acting career for me? No, thought not, lol! πŸ˜›

Right, video tonight, its one of those progression things. No, there is no song of such a title that I know of, but there is an album with a similar name. And one of the singles taken off that LP is…

Stepping out on stage

I realized one thing earlier today, when Eric was watching the Darts here (recording of last night), and I was trying to get on with stuff on the laptop, that this time around, there was something a little bit different about it.

No, not strictly the fact that the walk on girls are now gone, though I did find that sort of odd. Personally, I disagreed with that decision, as if ladies are willing to do that, for good pay, and good publicity for themselves, then why not? As far as I know, no one is forced to do it, all free will, and all that stuff, so…? Would I have done it, if I’d been a woman back then, young, pretty and all that stuff, and good money was on offer for doing that, oh, absolutely! But now…

Its fair to say that before this year, I’d never performed anywhere famous. Yes, village halls, school stages, and the like dont tend to attract the celebrities of the world. Whereas now, I’ve done the North Pier, at Blackpool, and more critically, in the same location, the Winter Gardens, which is of course, where the darts are being shown from this week.

No, I never got up on the stage, but plenty of people saw this Flapper, strutting her stuff on the ‘meet and greet’ stuff, and directing people after the film show. And no, even on the Pier, unlike my friend, Angie, I missed getting up on stage at the Pier, something I do regret now, but can hopefully right, some day. Or at the Winter Garden, maybe…? I hope she sees this, and maybe Catherine too, because I know the 2 of us would love to do something there next March, probably before the public get in, and I suspect one or two of the others would too!

But yes, now I can say I’ve seen a venue that I’ve performed at, on TV. No, at my age, I dont think (certain, in truth) I’d get the job as a walk on girl this week, even if they had any, but…

Oh, next month, those at the Lytham Festival (18th and 19th), watch out for some stylishly dressed people, doing pre publicity for next March. No, I wont be there, its a Saturday/Sunday in August, and getting time off work would have been a no go. Besides which, finding anywhere to stay in mid August, no chance, I’m sure! But next March, just maybe, on a stage where a few dart players have been…? πŸ˜‰

Right, video time. I did use this a couple of years back, but when I found a live version, lets say it wasnt a great performance, and leave it at that!