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  Issue #138

I'm not hearing you, Chief! Maybe I'll try the other shoe,,

Mike's Pith & Wind - Pride & procrastination
I seem to remember mentioning, and fairly recently too, that I was so concerned about my hearing I felt impelled to do something about it. Well, whether I mentioned it or not, (because, of course, my other concern is my memory), I’ve actually taken the first hesitant steps along the path to, well, where I’m not really sure, and while I don’t imagine for a second that my hearing will be magically restored, because I’ve known for decades that once the damage is done it’s done, maybe I’ll be able to look forward to detecting the odd consonant again with my partially government sponsored hearing aids in place.
There’s a certain irony in how I arrived at this situation. I know that I’m of an age where such frailties are on the cards and I also know that being a rock musician tends to stack the odds in favour of some sort of hearing loss, but I thought I was doing OK – and I was doing OK, until 2007 that is.
I’d been having some discomfort with my right ear and I’d worked out that it was full of water and wax and probably some pond life as well, so I took myself down to see my local GP. After a quick inspection he agreed with my diagnosis and syringed the offending ear, removing all sorts of horrible gunk in the process.
My hearing was back in balance again. O joy! But instead of coddling my newly cleansed ear until it got used to all those nasty, dangerous sounds in this brutal, uncaring world I decided that I should attempt a mix of a hitherto intransigent song with my.. read more

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Dick's Toolbox - Seriously
We are inclined to take the world too seriously. As we get older we have an awareness that our time on this planet just may be more limited. We may feel that we should not waste time on ephemera but rather concentrate on the significant and worthy. Give me more culture! I must have more culture in case there is something that I am missing about the glories of humanity and its achievements. More Uzbekistan art-house movies with sub-titles, more Proust and Ishiguro, more modern jazz (if that is not an oxymoron), more Hildur Gudnadóttir's “Leyfdu Ljósinu’* and more anything that is hard intellectual work. Let me suffer so that I know it is doing me good. Cultural kale if you like - which I don’t.
And naturally to understand this I have to dress like a hamster, have hair (any hair) that looks like it was styled in a wind tunnel and abuse my body and aesthetics with tattoos. As if it makes any difference to be vaguely hip when you are well over the half century in years. To even.. read more

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