To totally spoil the video choice for some, yes, this is the version where Ginger Rogers has fun with the lyrics, and includes a certain Miss Clara Elaine Johnson dressed in some money in the second half of the video, but anyway…
The first shocking moment to come out of the day was actually the time I came downstairs and had breakfast this morning. I know, 8 in the morning, on a Saturday for some (fine, many) would be early, but for me of recent times, total luxury, lol. No, sleeping right through night isnt happening yet without bathroom visit, but only 1, and able to get up at such a wicked hour, well…
The first nice moment of the day actually didnt relate to money directly. As mentioned before, some very nice people donated money to the old cancer patient, either by entering a golf competition, or in a couple of generous cases, money on top of that. So, given the sweet fix all this treatment stuff has given me, I went on Thornton’s website on Thursday (non expensive tastes, lol), and ordered 3 boxes for the price of 2, their special offer. Yes, I’m a Yorkshire girl, I still dont spend money wildly, lol. Delivery was marked as 3-5 days from order, so I was assuming early part of next week. Yes, email said out for delivery today, and yes, sat by me now, though untouched so far, arent I good, even if I dont know why?
The amusing side of this was the box. It was huge! Thankfully I didnt have to deal with it, Eric did. In truth, 10% of the box was chocolates, the other 90% was packaging! Seriously, I thought Amazon was bad for packing, but seriously…
I have been doing my banking online for quite a while now, long before my brain went AWOL but I only tend to check on balance when I’m told money has gone in, or I need to transfer money out of it. Other than that, nothing is happening, so I leave it to ‘sleep’, lol. So therefore it was only when I got a letter today from the PIP (Personal Independence Payment) people saying that they had completed the process of approving my benefits, and had paid me my back payment yesterday, from date of claim, ooh! I also got a message from another benefit department, telling me that it had now been confirmed that I have been accepted as entitled to benefits for unemployment, with no need to search for work, due to my circumstances. I know, both were formalities, but it has to be done properly, so…weight off my mind, for sure. Main (only?) thing to come now is the disabled bus pass, but given there is zero need for that before 9th December, and more realistically, the beginning of New Year, no great concern at moment. Have got my first bus trip planned, the once every 2 hours bus from outside home, into town, to the cafe in the Bus Station, and buy coffee and cake for me, and Eric.
I do plan to do a similar trip with Linda before then, if possible, to christen the blue badge, but all this is at least 4 weeks off, so… and I will see her on 11th (day before works meal) December, though that will be a separate trip.
No, I’m not going to be rich, but all this will enable me to survive, for sure. So fair to say, its been a good day, and in some money.
OK, video time. Ginger Rogers, Clara Johnson, and skimpy outfits, all in under 3 minutes, what more could you ask for? So…
To those who think that 1 video is one too many on the blogs, you’re going to hate me tonight. To those who think I need to include more videos, you’re going to love me, probably for 1 night only mind, lol.
Yesterday, as mentioned, I got the letter from the specialist confirming that the best option for this ‘old biddy’ was medical retirement, and I got the covering note from the surgery signing me off until the end of January, and these got sent off to work this morning. This afternoon, as planned, I got the call from the health experts at work, and strangely enough, they are now sending off a report stating the same thing. They asked all the right, and fine questions, I did the same with answers.
I’ll be honest, I’m glad its all settled, and has been done so in an amicable way too. It means I can put December 12th on the Diary (works Christmas dinner, for those who need to be told) as a date to look forward to, and I can also look forward to, in the New Year, after I’ve recovered fully, I can make a few plans for what I want to do in some ways, which those who know about the ‘other blog’ will get a few ideas on, later this evening.
There are 2 things that occur in my thoughts, one that I can probably deal with from this country, health permitting, and thats the transition step to full womanhood. I must admit I do wonder if its just one bit of manhood that needs to go, some think it probably is! The second is probably a lot more complex, and will require me to get to ancient wedding records in Los Angeles, to find out who Miss Clara Johnson became when she became Mrs Clara ? so I can follow her through a bit more. My suspicion is 1937 to 1939 is the period I’d need to look at, but no actual evidence, beyond the traceable end of her career in movie dancing in 1937, but given she was 32 by then, well getting on a bit for that role, lol…?
And no, I have no idea when I will feel up to that task at the moment! No time soon, I suspect, but I hope I will find her, lol. The other thing re her that now intrigues me is the cause of death at a youngish age. I always assumed lung cancer, as everyone smoked back then, but now, with what has happened to me, with the brain cancer, I do wonder if its a repeat of history, maybe? Just makes me more intrigued to track her down, in truth.
OK, videos time. All round one song, by OMD, ‘If you leave’, which ironically sunk pretty badly over here, but was one of their biggest in US. Probably because of ‘Pretty In Pink’, but anyway…
Lets start with a new video, only released today, that explains the events around that
Then, as its mentioned in here, the original video.
And lastly, a very, very rare live performance of the song
Oh, there is plenty of news events I’d love to comment on this week, but as strictly at this time I’m still a civil servant, I will pass on them, even if the PM, and the police seem to want to break those rules, I’ll be good.
But yes, for both my past life self, and this one, it seems its going to be quite a weekend. Well, I’ve got through the first week, weekday wise at least, without a minder in the house, other than the cats, and I dont think they care how I’m getting on as long as I need feed them anyway!
So, lets start with my past life self, who might also lay in my future, but more on that shortly. Yes, on this date, 114 years ago, a new baby girl entered the world in Pottawatomie County, Oklahoma, to be given the name of Clara Elaine Johnson by her parents. 20 years later, via a stay in Texas, moved to Hollywood, dreaming of making herself a career in the movies, probably as a star. Well, she got one, the career, more so once talkies took off, and musicals, because clearly she’d had dance lessons at some point, done decently, and after that, the chorus dance lines at various studios (principally MGM, Warner, and RKO) beckoned until at least 1937 (last year I’ve traced her, the first being 1929) and she would have been 32 by then, so that might have been it?
After that, marriage, a daughter, and a death around 50 (I’m certain smoking related) for which I lack much detail, as I dont know her married surname, and then shortly after that, a new life, me! I might manage more years than her, but unless they can solve my health issues, it might not be a ton more!
Which leads on to me, as tomorrow marks the date of my rearranged MRI at Huddersfield Hospital. Heaven knows what they are going to discover there. Will it just be Epilepsy, or something more serious, heaven knows. But at least its the big step to finding out at least. I’ve no idea what it will be like, but I want it sorted, regardless. Despite them saying they couldnt find anything new at the Hospital, I definitely dont feel as strong now as I did before then, but I will try to survive to let the Neurologist make the calls on that. Reading earlier suggests it will be a week or two to hear, but hopefully soon. I need to get the rest of my life mapped out, whatever it might bring. Hopefully the finish of gender change, but will have to see what I’m allowed to do on that front.
New AI brain would be nice, but just wishful thinking I’m certain. Full robot body definitely would be, sadly.
As to where the rest of my life might be spent, who knows, or how long it will be. Though if the only brain I can have is busted, maybe I dont want to live too long anyway?
Right, video time. What might the future hold. I’ll say it, I’d love one of those Metropolis Robot body’s, and brain capacity, if offered. Yes, both of those things in the video
Yes, I know its been a long wait for this, and I only wish I could say it was for a good reason, but it isnt! Yes, I know, I wasnt meant to go to the hospital before next Saturday, but I couldnt wait that long, I was there in advance, last Saturday. Funny thing is, I dont actually think I passed out, but I probably wasnt far from doing so, and certainly wasnt capable of simply things like getting to my room upstairs, even with the aid of the chair up the stairs, I still couldnt get to my room, so off I end up going to hospital again in an ambulance, but at least this time I knew the journey was happening.
No, they couldnt find anything seriously wrong, so I got released at the end of the evening, and ended up getting a taxi home. I’m not convinced how well I really was, and in truth, anything up to this Morning is a blur. Better now, though I wouldnt expect to do anything clever today, put it that way. Computer wasnt working too well either, but seemingly back to normal today.
Hopefully now my next visit to the hospital will be this Saturday, for my session in the MRI tube, to see just how busted my brain really is. Fine, I would like the tube to do more than just check on my brain, but anyway…No, I dont think brainwashing service is available lol! In truth, I, and a few friends in the US, as well as the ones over here will be glad when thats done. Yes, Kiefer, I wouldnt put the brain rearranging system past you, oh I wish!
The only other planned change in the near future is a change of hair colour, yes, getting it done after the MRI tube experience, going to be a redhead of some hue! Suspect more strawberry than fluorescent, but I dont know exactly what June has in mind. Fun thing is, the only colour picture I have of Clara Johnson is from 1935, when she was very blonde, but thats as natural as mine! The picture from 1929 in black and white is either soft blonde, or maybe red, hmm? Either way, it will be fun to have a change after all this time.
Hopefully soon I can start planning a trip to the US, just not sure where, or when at this point. Whether its holiday, health, or combination at this point, who knows. Might even come back a whole new woman, physically, and or mentally, who knows. I suspect hoping to come back with an AI brain, or whole new robot body might be hoping too much lol. Would love that though! Clara Johnson, 20 something lookalike, oh heaven!
Right, video. A clue in the blog title. Gone with the Cat Stevens version of the song, as finding live from 60’s isnt easy!
I suppose the irony of doing this blog tonight is that it wont mean an awful lot to all my US readers, but apologies, just humour me for once. Yes, that strange sport you dont understand, Cricket.
The things it has in common are England, Australia, and a ground in Leeds, named Headingley, given thats the district of Leeds where the ground is.
Back in 1981, England seemed to be losing yet another test match to the old enemy. Well into their second innings they hadnt scored as many runs as Australia had in one. Then Ian Botham found a partner who would hang around with him, named Graham Dilley, and they managed to add a lot of runs, and at least make Australia bat again, even if they didnt need to score that many runs to win anyway. Then Bob Willis bowled like a demon, the Australian batsmen froze like rabbits in headlights, and the rest was history. Yes, from the pits of defeat, England actually won the game. I never saw those events, was working, and then at club cricket when this all happened.
So, to this week! Same venue, same teams, and… When Australia batted first, and only made 179, it looked like England were set for glory…maybe? To cut a long story short, a few hours later, England were all out for 67! Pathetic! So out went Australia to bat again, and totalled 246 this time around, leaving England the seemingly impossible task of needing 359 runs to win, and keep the series alive.
Not long after that, England were 15-2, and 59 looked challenging, let alone 359. For a while from there, things improved, and it looked like maybe a miracle was possible. Then finally, they collapsed again, and the last batsman, Jack Leach walked to the wicket, with England still needing 73 runs to win. But there was another batsman there, named Ben Stokes who proceeded to put on a batting masterclass. So here we are, now 351-9 when the fun really begins.
Teams are allowed 2 appeals against Umpiring decisions, and at this point, Australia rashly used their second for a LBW decision not given by the umpire, that even a short sighted biddy like me could tell couldnt possibly be out. Without getting technical, where the ball had pitched, LBW cannot be given. A decision that came back to bite them.
6 runs later, when Australia would still win by 1 run, the bowler dropped the ball that was passed to him to run out the last batsman, so England survived. A matter of balls later, the ball hit Stokes on the pads, in front of the wickets, but the Umpire didnt give it out. If they hadnt made that pointless appeal 6 runs earlier, they could have appeal, the off pitch umpire would have given him out, and Australia would have won.
Then Leach went and faced the next over, managed to score a run (his first, and only one in his lengthy innings) to tie the scores. Stokes then scored the winning runs, and the series continues in a meaningful way. Yes, this time I saw the events play out, and would have done, even if not now disabled, as it happened on a Sunday. Seriously, if I hadnt seen it, I would never have believed it!
Oh, and something more my American friends, a piece of Baseball irony. Just got an email from Seattle Mariners (signed up for trip, never cancelled), and apparently, having just played my beloved Dodgers, thats where the Yankees have now gone. On Wednesday night, Justus Sheffield (ex Yankee) will pitch for the Mariners, and James Paxton (ex Mariner) will pitch for the Yankees. I think they actually changed teams in the same trade! In other circumstances, it could have been reversed!
OK, video time. If Clara Johnson had been around 40 years later, or if in my teens, I’d been a dancer, just like her (with her looks, and non intersex), well, this could have been me. Magic?
Oh, happy Independence Day, America.
Funny thing was, I’d planned to give this a miss for a few reasons. Firstly, I know people are going to want to hear what tomorrow is like for me, with the EEG Scan, and I try not to do too many blogs, as well as too few in a week. But then someone posted a picture, and well, I had to post it, and it could hardly wait a year, so…
Of course, the funny thing about my connections to the USA, so many of them lead to one state, Oklahoma! Of course its where Clara Johnson was born, in territory time, and not only that, but Kate has pointed out to me, its a highly likely target point for my Irish Great Grandparents at the time, if they’d gone west, instead of to England. Given that would have happened just before Clara was born only makes that even more ironic.
Sadly, Kate and I have agreed that even if I get permission to fly, post scans (which I will, if only epilepsy), I wont be going to Oklahoma this year. I think she’d rather have me nearer home, and with the better facilities in New England close by, and in truth, I dont blame her! But if Clara thinks she’s safe, there’s always next year, by which time hopefully things will be really stabilised!
I cant make plans until after the scans on what I will do, as a lot will depend on where, when, and how much surgery I got done, to solve all my issues. A dear friend (or 2) have made it very clear they’d love to find a way to get it done in the USA, and given some of the recent reports coming out about the NHS, who can blame them? But until I know whats the matter with my brain, no comment. But definitely need to get some bits bobbed somewhere in the near future, I’ve pledged for that, and in truth, it will be nice now to get it done.
Its also fascinating to think where I might be now, if my ancestors had gone west to ‘Oklahoma’? Or did one version of my life have that happen, produce Clara Johnson, and only in the other life did they come to England? I know, silly idea, but an interesting thought. Would I have followed Clara’s route, ended up in movies in Hollywood, would I have followed Kate’s route, to New England. Or might I be a happy housewife home in Oklahoma, with children, who knows?
Oh right, that photo, no I hadnt forgotten. Its a picture of another shy, demure blonde, who would never say boo to a goose. Yes, you know I’m joking I hope, because its Mae West, dressed as the Statue of Liberty. Would I love to wear this dress, you bet I would!
Maybe next year, somewhere in the USA, who knows, but I wouldnt put good money on it!
Right, the video. Its the obvious song, but its ironic about the way politicians pat themselves on the chest, and have this blasting out at rallies. Why, because its actually an Anti Vietnam song, and not deeply proud of what the USA did. But they just look at the song title, not the lyrics, and… God Bless America!
The only snag with time travelling back to the 1930’s is if you get caught out time travelling. Its fine if I put on the Clara Johnson look, as no one is the wiser, but if I forget, or the camouflage vanishes, well…
So there I was, coolly back in 1933, walking past Warner’s studio, when I felt a hand on my shoulder, and a voice said, “Clara, so good to see you, we need you for a photo shoot right away. Just go put on a sexy dress, get down to the stills studio, and get it done.”
Well, given I didnt want her to get into trouble, what can I say, I went along with it. Short dress, showing lots of leg, enough to get the men excited, and all that. Up until yesterday, no concern, never seen recently, so I assumed it had got conveniently lost, until it hadnt!
OK, anyone who believed that story, you’re way too innocent, even if it looks like it was taken 85 years ago, lol. Actually, it was taken about 5 years ago, but you have to admit, it has the look of something far more vintage. This fact is down to the talent of a friend named Frank, nothing to do with time travel, or studio photo shoots at Warner’s in 1933. But yes, look at those legs, lol, all me!
I assume its all done with one of these modern computer filter things, to turn this
into my 1930’s self! I actually posted it for a Myrna Loy ‘homage’ photo contest, said jokingly that it should look more 1930’s, and lo and behold…
But fine, if you really want to think that the first picture is genuinely me, taken in 1933, and that the second one is a colourised version of it, then fine. But which is the true story, you decide! 😉
So, you might then be asking, what was Clara doing at Warner’s in 1933, in the first place? Well, unsurprisingly, it was for one of those magical Buzby Berkeley musical numbers. Clearly she was a competent swimmer, as she is in this, see if you can spot her? Easiest in the fountain section, but you do see her in the pool too. So…?
Well, I have to admit that recently I’ve accepted there are more than a few things I used to do with ease, which are either now only be done with difficulty (see Monday’s blog) or not going to happen at all. Yes, I did manage to walk a few hundred yards on Monday, but it hurt. I then did about 4 calls in quick succession on Wednesday, dealing with doctors, and reports afterwards to work with results, and an hour or so after that, my voice was a mess too, but I got by. No, the chances of getting through an 8 hour shift of phone calls, back to back, no way.
But at the same time, I must try not to give up doing everything I used to do, must I? So anyway, events yesterday led to my first non health related trip out since last month, a meal out yesterday evening. Very much looked after, very much with an eye kept on me, but I went. Yes, as you can gather from this, I survived. But yes, I found the walking (again only a few hundred yards) a challenge, and getting the brain to focus on making selections from the menu, well… Lets just say that unless the neurologist (or a handy mad scientist) can revive my brain somewhat, complex holidays on my own just arent going to happen any more! Not saying not going to happen, but someone faces a challenge if it is going to, thats for sure.
Great shame, as it will probably mean I will have to give up on any plans to visit Pottawatomie County, Oklahoma, and ‘hunt’ for Clara Johnson, unless I can recover somewhat. Not giving up on something more relaxing with Kate just yet, but active stuff, I dont think so! Well, unless someone wants to swap me out into a fully functioning brain, and body at least, lol. But yes, if anyone has a nice robot body that just needs testing with the aid of a human volunteer…? 😉
The other thing I’m keeping doing, was done today, for an event tomorrow. Yes, its that time of year again, the Grand National. I suspect the last time I didnt bet on the race (maybe?) was 1974. I’m not saying I didnt bet on it then, but I just cant work out how I would have done so. I certainly ‘bet’ (well my Father did, on my behalf) between 1967, and 1969, but then he left home, and I have no idea after that? He did still see us until his death in the mid 70’s, so maybe he did still put bets on for me, but I cant be sure, at nearly 50 years on! After that, I was working, I was putting my ‘pennies’ each way on a horse in the race, and the tradition has continued. Some good years, some bad years, but gambled, all the same, in recent years, my annual (or sometimes twice annual) trip to the bookies to put bets on (up to £1 each way x 3 now) for myself, and Eric. But seriously, getting out to do that at present, no chance.
So today, with both of us made our selections online, and I checked out to see where the best, reliable prices were (there are some online firms I’ve never heard of, or would bet with, in truth) and what amused me was that the nicest place terms, and prices were with the firm that made me redundant 4 years ago, William Hill! So anyway, account opened, bets placed, and now fingers crossed I can take some money off them tomorrow. So yes, that long streak will last 1 more year at least!
So, in some senses at least, I’m keeping on doing what I’ve been doing, even if there are a few cheats involved now. Which leads me to the video. a real Pre-Code treat. Yes, it shows, behaviour, and shape of the lampshade, lol. Probably tame now, but in the more puritan 1930’s…
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…
Old friends, and all that stuff. Mainly because everything else I can think to rant about is my health, or politics, so lets avoid those for once…
The first time Kate, and I met up in Boston, I got to fulfil one of my baseball dreams, a visit to the legendary Fenway Park, to watch a game. What you have to allow for, is that when I buy a baseball ticket for myself, its at the budget end of the range. Not the bleachers, even before my back went, but nothing very stylish either, usually an ‘up in the gods’ job. So, not really knowing Kate all that well before the trip, I was assuming much of the same.
Yes, wrong, one of the much nicer seats, and a restaurant available, where the staff cared for our needs before the game, oh wow. The next time we planned to go to the baseball together, I was therefore suspecting more of the same. Let me add, this wasnt in Boston, this was in Kansas City, but yes, the Red Sox were the opposition, so yes, there might have been some friendly rivalry between the 2 of us. Yes, and nice viewing seats too. Oh, and they got better! Kate has some health issues that make mine now look less of a concern, and though the seats were great, she couldnt get comfortable. So she asked nicely, and we quickly got moved to more suitable seats, and had attentive staff caring for us for the rest of the afternoon! It was the year the Royals lost in the World Series, but they got their reward a year later!
So far, thats the only game we’ve been together at, where there has been a friendly rivalry between us. We do tend to have a friendly tease when Kansas State (my team to follow) play Oklahoma State (her university) each year, but nothing too serious, all the same.
Now it looks like we are going to get an extra ‘tease’ next weekend in the NFL, as the Kansas City Chiefs (won last night) are set to host her New England Patriots (35-7 up, as I write) in the AFC Championship. No, I wont actually see the game, as it will start at 11.40 pm next Sunday, UK time, and thats way too late for me. I’ll have to settle for catching the highlights the next day, I guess? But I bet Kate watches it, as it will be early evening for her, and yeah, its the Patriots!
Of course my added amusement is, we could yet have a Jean Harlow Superbowl, lol, though I’m sure Kate wont want that to happen. Yes, KC, where she was born, against the Hollywood team, the Los Angeles Rams!
One of these days, Kate and I will get to another sports game together. When, and where, to be advised, lol!
OK, the video tonight has no relevance to the blog! I know, shocking stuff. But fine, in some of my short mind control story pieces, I use Clara Johnson, and get her turned temporarily into a robot. So imagine my amusement when I found a musical number, where she’s wearing a metal outfit…