Sunday, 30 October 2011

Books, Music, Comedy and Pneumonia

Today I ordered several albums and books from Amazon. Another CD arrived yesterday.  The album is a 1986 album titled Philip Oakey & Giorgio Moroder. It was a commercial failure but I have always liked the mix of the two musicians. They complement each other just like Jimmy Sommerville compliments Sparks (No 1 in Heaven).

Sparks (with Jimmy Sommerville) The No. 1 Song in Heaven

The 80's was called the Coke decade for a reason
Soft Cell - TOTP 

Soft Cell - "Tainted Love '91" ( Mendelsohn Mix)

Marc Almond Parody

Speaking of Oakey, this was in my email earlier today.
Its Philip Oakey on ITV's Tiswas Indian Shirt Contest (Part 1) (1981)

According to Wikipedia: Tiswas was a Saturday morning children's British television series which ran from 5 January 1974 to 3 April 1982 and was produced for the ITV network by ATV Network Limited.

It also had a limited adult following, as I have fond memories of my parents laughing while watching Titswas Saturdays.

Bronski Beat & Marc Almond - "I Feel Love (Remix)"

Sorry I didn't get this entry finished last night, I ended up in Emergency. I thought I was fighting my annual bronchitis but instead I have walking pneumonia so I had a 12 hour date early this morning with an IV pole.

I must have been sicker than I felt because I wasn't there more than an hour and already asleep as soon as the chest films were finished. 

Slept from 3:00 am until 10:30 am, then spent some time Tweeting on my Droid and signed out at 12:00 noon. Only problem, once I signed the discharge papers they still hadn't removed my IV line from the antibiotics & saline, so I was waiting almost another hour for that.

Annie Lennox - "Why"
from the Diva album

Eurythmics - "Love is a Stranger"

I was going to head out to the Immedicenter today but at 1 am last night J just looked at me and said "You're going to the ER tonight." So I packed my overnight case, phone and a change of clothes and left with her half an hour later. I know a losing fight when I see one. I didn't have a chance in hell.

Power Station - "Get It On (Bang a Gong)"

Laura Branigan - "Gloria"

Helen Reddy - "Angie Baby"
I have always liked the way this video author used The Sims 2 as her canvas 
to make an animated music vision. 

Today's Double (make that Triple) Feature is my Mum's favorite artist.
After hearing her laughter in my head while
I remember her watching Tiswas with Dad, 
it also sadly reminds me the Cure for Huntington's Disease 
is too late for many. 
Linda Ronstadt - "When Will I be Loved"

Linda Ronstadt -"You're No Good"

About here my temperature started to spike, so if I don't appear to make sense I probably don't. I'm at 102 degrees.. and under a physician's care.
The Stone Poneys - "Different Drum"

Mum definitively danced to a Different Drummer, in a good way. It was from her that I learned to stand up and be independently minded instead of just the next man on the block.I love being the 'not-so-quiet' Library Aide, the man who listens to Trance in his 40's and  helps supply the local "Occupy Santa Barbara" down in Del a Guerra Plaza.  Over 5 years ago, I was at the same plaza supporting the Print Teamsters Union protesting against the local newspaper gagging their reporters over union activities.

Okay, time for my antibiotics, inhaler and cough syrup along with my regular nighttime meds. Then off to bed I go. Its now 11:30pm and I'm awake and still tired. J finally pulled me off the couch and helped me into my pj's and in bed. I don't remember the last time I've had to have this much help while sick, not including the pox. 

Its embarrassing. Its also more than a bit humiliating. Okay,its outright emasculating to have someone who I have a romantic relationship with change me out of my clothes and undies, into my PJ's and take me into the toilet to wash my face and brush myteeth. I outright wanted to die.

I had one of those a-Ha moments. Let's be honest here. Its not going uphill from here.

Now if we can only curl up and sleep. If I can't sleep in a hour, J filled my Lunesta sleeping pill (she knows me all to well), and I'll take one of those.

You know what really scared me tonight? What if I was living alone? Who would take care of me then?

$hit Mum, I don't know how you handled Dad caring for you the months you managed to have this kind of dual relationship. Bless both of you for loving each other.

G'Nite, Your son..... 

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Tuesday, 25 October 2011

Bad lip syncing, George Michael and more.

Mood 5.5
Anxiety 2.0

I haven't been sleeping well lately. I spent over 24 hours in a medicated sleep. I wake up every four hours with anxiety and pain, take medication and fall back asleep half an hour later. Evidently my sleep isn't very productive as J says I'm tossing, turning and jerking. All I know is that after three cups of coffee I'm still yawning.
First I want to play Round and Round by Spandau Ballet.

The lead singer of Spandau Ballet, Tony Hadley, is a patron of the HDA.

This next song has been playing around in my head for several days. Perhaps its because its on one of my tabs on Chrome and my computer has been crashing. Every time I start it up, this song comes on. Then again, I've also been watching an interview and performances by Human League on the old Australian show Countdown and this is one of the songs they lip sync.
The Human League - Love Action

The reason I've loved this song for so many years is that its a man talking about feelings and failures in love. At one point he even talks about curling up and crying. 

These are feelings we do go through but here in America you never dare admit failure. Its one thing I really don't like about the culture here. They invented the entire "Keep up with the Joneses" phenomenon. 

I found this gem in a great playlist of the entire Human League portions of this show that showed up in my email. It starts with this performance of Love Action, a couple short interview sections and then Open Your Heart and ends with a hilarious version of Don't You Want Me in which Philip turns away from the mic halfway though the chorus to laugh. Strangely although he's in the same clothes, the other members aren't which leads me to believe it was recorded/aired on a different day.

On second thought, I'm going to put this version of DYWM up here. Its music comic gold. 

To quote what I wrote on Facebook:
Sorry but I can't help cracking up when Philip and Susan turn around to laugh. At 2:20 he doesn't even give a crap and turns away halfway through the chorus. When the camera cuts away the keyboardist is smirking too. Got to love live television.

Early Human League song Black Hit Of Space (1980)
You  can see the soon-to-be members of Heaven 17 here in the background, The reel-to-reel at the 
bottom is their electronic substitute for drums. 

The Paul Simon Concert went really well. I am so glad I had the chance to go. He was on top of his game and in the intimate venue like the bowl it came off really well. 

The Sound of Silence at Ground Zero, NYC

Speaking of Paul Simon, He was on the Johnny Walker Show today on Radio2. It was a replay of a show from May. It was perfect timing for me :) You can hear the entire show "You Can Call Me Paul"  for 7 days online.

I called my shrink today. I am going in Wednesday but I'm just not feeling good. My OCD is coming out like crazy. I can't leave the house for a cigarette without freaking out thinking the coffee pot is still plugged in. Get out of my car and "Oh $hit, did I lock the door?" You get the picture. Its not too pleasant.

I also mentioned that on top of the OCD my anxiety is now constantly through the roof. It takes so much Xanax to get rid of the anxiety I end up asleep. Its easier to sleep then let my thoughts run wild. Right now there is no in-between. Eventually  anxiety took over so strongly it helped set off a headache. What started the headache was I was reading on the laptop by my side of the bed and fell asleep. Sure enough, like what has happened before, my neck jerked, waking me straight up.

Choosing this song simply because I love it.
I really feel John's Words.
Right now this is how I'm living and enjoying every minute of it.

Yeap, I think its time to go back on the Haldol. I was seriously hoping to avoid having to start it again. There is no getting around it though. I'm not sleeping until I'm beyond exhausted, small things are giving me a rise that is fully out of proportion, and I'm OCDing like crazy. The SSRI's for OCD have never worked on my depression so to go on one of those would be trading off an antidepressant for an OCD medication, and that is not a trade-off I can afford. To make a long story short, he agreed with me and actually had the guts to tell me he was wondering how long it would be until I would 'fess up to him that I needed it. Live and learn I say.

Julian Lennon-Too Late for Goodbyes

One thing I've noticed lately is that the more text I have in my blogs, the higher my depression level. It may not be higher on the scale, but the longer the depression the more introspective I become. When that happens I write more here on this blog.

An old Saturday Night Live Skit. This
is a compilation of four Deep Thoughts by Jack Handy

George Michael 
 just tweeted this song. I love ballads anyway
but this one is a beaut.

And with that I'm going to finish this pizza and then sleep.

However, first I want to thank J for putting up with the mood swings and all the rest of these Huntington's Disease mental games I've been going through. J, I love you. As in really, really love you. As in I wouldn't b*tch if I ended spending the rest of my life with you. This one's for you.

Thank you to all the musicians featured here tonight who lifted my mood up.

Mood 8.0
Anxiety 1.5

G'Nite and hope you are sleeping well.

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Saturday, 22 October 2011

Book Club and Duran Squared

Yesterday I spent half the night trying to relax to sleep after spending a few hours with a friend who acknowledged last night that she is having what may be visible signs of Huntington's Disease. Then I told her it may also be 300 other visible things. Like Essential Tremor which is basically benign.

It just wasn't obvious to others until last night. Two nights ago her arm got fine tremors during a meeting of over fifteen people. She was able to use her other hand to nail the offending wrist into the arm of the chair where no one would notice. However, the next night people did notice and stopped her to ask if she was alright. She is now discussing going to UCLA's Center of Excellence (title bestowed upon them by the HDSA)

She is scared to go because her mother did not emotionally get over her genetic test for HD. I told her she has a strong support network, unlike her mother did at the time of her testing.

We talked and talked until wee hours of the morning. Finally I had to explain that "I'm not her doctor and I don't play one on television. In fact, technically I'm not a librarian but that one I got  to play on  the CCTV at work."

Then she laughed,. and I laughed and we cried over her mum and we laughed some more and then talked until our throats were sore.

We made plans on what we will do to support the Occupy Santa Barbara group. On the way out she asked if I was going to blog about it. I told her that like last time, it depended on how she felt about it. She asked me to so other people would see how hard HD is on kids who come out of the starting gates with no prior knowledge of HD. That's when I left for home. Its also when I realized for many years I was one of those kids she was talking about.

Yes it was a long night. Would I do it again? In a heartbeat.
Luther Vandross, Dionne Warwick, Whitney Houston and Stevie Wonder

Am I tired? Let's see. I go off to pick up my prescriptions. I walk as I'm too tired to drive. After picking them up off I go to the copy shop to finally get that Advance Health Directive copied and mailed. Then on the way home I drop two copies that were in between the original and another copy. I don't notice it until I stop for a quick Twitter break (I told you the other day I've become addicted to Social Networking).

So when I notice the two copies aren't in my hands I have to walk halfway back to Kinko's to find them, untouched. Thank goodness as they have my Social Security and Driving Licence on them. The only number I didn't put on it was my Green Card ID.

Tonight I also had my book club meeting. It went well, but I'm more excited that the club decided to go with my choice next. I had just started rereading  The Guests of the Ayatollah by Mark Bowden of Black Hawk Down fame. I am finding it very pertinent to the current Middle East tensions. Although the book deals mainly with the Embassy takeover, the underlying current is the change of Government in Iran based on the unhappiness with the American based Shah.

Today's Double Feature consists of two cuts by Duran Duran from their 7 and the Ragged Tiger album.

Of  Crime and Passion

I Take the Dice

One last song, Mike Oldfield when he was still innovative. 
Mike Oldfield  5 Miles Out 1982

I'ms [I'ms-need I say more?] beyond exhausted and its only 9:00 at night.  I didn't slept a wink last night so Heigh Ho! Heighi Ho!  Off to bed I go.

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Thursday, 20 October 2011

Walking on a High Wire

This is insane. How could I go from such a low anxiety level to such a high one the second I wake up is beyond me. 

Mood 5.0
Anxiety 7.5

My anxiety was so bad that when I woke up I wasn't able to get out from under the covers to the toilet. 

"A lot of people think that 'Shout' is just another song about primal scream theory, continuing the themes of the first album. It is actually more concerned with political protest. It came out in 1984 when a lot of people were still worried about the aftermath of The Cold War and it was basically an encouragement to protest."—Roland Orzabal

On that note I'm dedicating this song to Operation Wall Street.

High Wire by Men at Work
I swear this is my theme song lately.

Seriously, this song captures how I've been feeling lately. I constantly feel like I'm on this little wire and I have to be careful not to fall off.

Cruel Summer by Bananarama
The song's title says it all. Not been a good year. 

On the other hand, last night went very well. I had a long talk with J and it seems as if she is also in it for the long haul. I never thought this would happen to me and its a wonderful feeling. Scary but wonderful.

Take a Chance on Me - Abba
Its nice to have someone willing to take a chance on me.
I never thought I'd feel this way. I swore I never would.
Scary, but not in a bad way, in a way where I am in unknown 
territory, which isn't always a bad thing.

Mood 6.0
Anxiety 5.0

Ah the age of Disco and very early childhood memories.

On my way out the door just having fun here with my music.

A woman on one of the HD boards I belong suggested we post photos of our loved ones smiling. Although I don't have any photos to share here in California, it has lifted my mood to see everyone else's photos.

Mood 6.5
Anxiety 3.0 

I'm very tired this evening so going to sign off. 

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Madonna, Giorgio Moroder, mood swings and falling flat on my face in love

Mood 6.5

Good afternoon all. I'm having a really good day here. I had a chance to sleep in today and it felt good. When I woke up I feel like I do on Sundays. It was nice. I had my coffee and some late breakfast, a meal I've been neglecting lately. Then I headed off to the Shrink. More on that visit later. Still have a bit of anxiety but nothing like it was yesterday. 

I woke up to check my Facebook and saw this brilliant Huntington's Disease/Juvenile Huntington's Disease video by Brett Thomas. I'm passing it on and asking you to please  consider doing so yourself. Without educating the general public about Huntington's Disease people are misdiagnosed while their symptoms go untreated properly. This is unfair to those suffering from HD/JHD as well as those that care for them.
Huntinton's disease & JHD Awareness Video. from Brett Thomas on Vimeo.

Okay now on to some music. This first video you are either going to love or hate. Its a remix of Human League's Being Boiled. DJ Gcr has sampled a lot of other tracks in here. I dig it, but am interested in other people's visions when I listen to music.

Everybody Dance Now. 

I hope this entry doesn't seem fractured but I'm literally going back and forth between Old Grey Whistle Test on BBC2 and my videos for this blog. Bob Harris is interviewing Debbie Harry of Blondie.

I just love her hair in this performance. S-E-X-Y
She wouldn't have to worry about me pushing her aside.\

Errr... Back to the blog here. Sorry about that deviation boys and girls. She still warrant's today's double feature.

At this rate, this blog is  never going to be finished. Trevor Nelson's Soul Show is on now. My music here may be inspired by that. Here is the 80's classic by the Commodore's Nightshift

I rarely do dedications, but I would feel remiss if I didn't dedicate this 
to all the nurses at Hallamshire Hospital. Especially thinking of
those who worked the nightshift on the neuro floor when I 
was hospitalized. 

For those who don't know, I was the patient from hell. I didn't want to be on the neurological floor (who does), I had horrible memories from when  my mother was in the hospital, I knew what may be coming down the pipeline (brain degeneration until I die) and so I didn't sleep until utterly exhausted. I saw something more in every test ordered and how dare you make me take a sleeping tablet. How did I know that is really what is in that tablet? I remembered all the tablets they gave my mum. Thanks but I'll  pass. 

Imagine if I'd been admitted for something HD related.  I wasn't. I was there for a seizure from a high fever at age 14. They wanted to rule out a  few other conditions along with JHD which was done without genetic testing as it hadn't come into existence yet.

So night nurses, I thank you all. That was almost 30 years ago but I still remember my care there.

To explain it another way, this is what I thought was happening to me. I really saw the rest of my life ready to explode from within.

I'm not exaggerating. This is how I felt. 
Would you have wanted to be my night nurse?
I didn't think so.

Let's lighten up a bit here. I seriously do not want to go to sleep in a funk tonight,
Mood 4.0

The Seventies had some decent music.

Great actors in a great film. Its wonderful when your mood is in the tank...
Like mine is, right now.

DID I TELL YOU YET HOW MUCH I F'ING HATE THIS? I hate going from a good mood to a crappy one in the bat of an eye. IT SUCKS.

Thank you.

Now give me some Moroder and I might feel better.
Giorgio-you say? This is Kenny Loggins.
Actually Boys and Girls, Loggins was 3rd choice to sing this song
after Bryan Adams and Toto.

Although wildly associated with Disco music of the 1970's Moroder has won 3 Oscars 
  • 1978 Best Original Score for Alan Parker's Midnight Express
  • 1983 Best Song "Flashdance...What a Feeling"
  • 1986 Best Song "Take My Breath Away" from Top Gun
Over the years he has collaborated with artists as diverse as Donna Summer (producing "I Feel Love"), Freddie Mercury (Soundtrack to "Metropolis") , Sparks (producing two albums No 1 in Heaven, and Terminal Jive), and Phillip Oakey ("Together in Electric Dreams" and Giorgio Moroder & Phillip Oakey)

Now that you know more than you ever wanted to about one of my musical heroes here is Berlin with a non-Moroder tune.

Berlin's Metro - extended version

Okay, this is seriously bad. I am coming back from a two hour anxiety attack that ended but the underlying depression is still here. 

Mood 5.0
Anxiety 8.0

Just took my night meds. After the first two nights, the Namenda isn't sedative at all. So that leaves me with having to sleep on Impramine and Lyrica. Those together aren't sedative enough. This is causing me to take Xanax to sleep. Xanax is a as-needed medication, I'm not supposed to take it to sleep. 

Which brings me to my visit with the shrink today. You know, when my day was still going pretty well? Well it went...well. I didn't tell him I'm taking the Xanax to sleep but did tell him I had stopped taking the Haldol after a couple days because it was making me lethargic and possibly making some other symptoms come out, specifically night kicking and during the day leg jerking.

 In fact, it was while I was on the Haldol that I fell down in soda aisle in the grocery store. Not too fun, let me tell you.

He wasn't happy at all about this but agreed to a trial of one week to see how continue to do without it. 

This interesting article was posted by a follower on Twitter Power From the People-Human Batteries.  

You know you're now an internet addict when...your girlfriend crawls into bed early with her book while you  finish up your blog. 
Mood 6.0 and raising
Anxiety 4.5 and lowering (I usually live in the 3s. I'm rarely anxiety free). I need to drop to three to sleep.

My understanding of this song is in burned in my heart.
This Tracy Chapman song resonates to me on so many different levels. It reminds me of leaving school after my O levels (now GCSE) to help my father take care of my Mum. I always wanted to run away from home and just keep driving. After her suicide that is exactly what I did, I took what little savings I had from my job, my life insurance policy and ran to America. I've never looked back. I visit home when I can, and I still vote but those are my only ties now with Britain. Oh, I also support the UK's Huntington's Disease Association financially with donations.
This is a sad song from a very sad movie.
Madonna's Live to Tell from At Close Range
If you haven't seen At Close Range run, don't walk, to the nearest video rental store. It is based on a true story and involves a troubled family including a father who is a burglar for a living. The premise sounds lame but it's actually a great character study. Christopher Walken, Sean Penn and Chris Penn all give staring performances.

On another level this song reminds me of how those of us with HD hide it. We hide it among ourselves and from the world. Often we deny it even when the symptoms are all there. In fact, some studies have shown that in fact denial can actually be a mental manifestation of the disease.

I love this song. It shows to me that Parker was able to get
a fabulous performance out of Madonna as Evita.
One thing I learned from this song is not to look down. If I do I'm only looking at the past and what good is that? I need to look toward the future and make my  own plans. that is one reason to this day I adore Electronica music. Its future moving my its nature.

Nope, I have no Irish Blood in me that I'm aware of 
however a friend of mine had a grandmother who sang
this song to her. Once it was played for me several times
it became a song with deep meaning for me.
For those of you who don't know the Spanish Lady is Death.

I've been thinking of death a lot lately. Most likely as I still have to make copies of my notarized living will and mail it off to the state so they have a copy. Its such a reminder to me that I won't be living a life of normal length, and that is fearful.
This album cut is just so moving. It reminds me that no matter
how low our opinions are of ourselves there are others
who care about us.
This is what true prayer should be, 
prayer for others and not ourselves.

This is one of the big issues I have with life in America
People are taught that they can do and be anything
yet you go through other parts of the country and its a
good dinner if you have beans and rice. 

Now I'm starting to relax. The backrub I'm getting as I type isn't hurting so I'm going to end with a couple love songs.
As you all know by now, this is the ultimate love song for the relationship
I have right now. I really feel that I won't be walking out the door.
In fact, I'm on the mortgage papers and own half of our house

I'll do it for you
J, You know I would
J, I love you.
I really do.
I hope I can spend the rest of my life with you
and tonight I'm finally going to tell  you that.

Mood 8
Anxiety 1.5

G'nite everyone.

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Tuesday, 18 October 2011

People are People so...

Mood 5.0
Songs a bit heavy but so is my mood. Woke up with serious anxiety again today. Took some of my anxiety medication and waiting now for it to work. I know what is causing the anxiety so that is a good first step to dealing with it.

Here's the old classic from the Pet Shop Boys.
How their music has matured over the years.
Then again, so has London.

Someday I'd like to take a car and drive through the states. I was speaking recently with a man who had done just that. It sounded so fun. With my anxiety, if I got too upset I could just lock up inside the car (misuse of the verb to go, I know). It works, just ask Gary Numan.

 Here in my car  
I feel safest of all
I can lock all my doors
It's the only way to live
In cars

One of the reason's I'm so upset is I let a certain family member bully me around. To cut to the chase this person gets away with all sorts of crap because he's seen as "the healthy one." Without an HD parent everyone always knew he was "safe" to love. They knew if they got attached to him he wouldn't up and kick the bucket. So for years he gets away with all sorts of things. Since  he's my age I've always been a good target for him.

Today he posted something anti-Operation Wall Street on his Facebook with the reason of upsetting me (and wrote as much too.) . He knows I'm supporting the local Operation Occupy here to the point of bringing supplies to them. 

Well, I've given the bastard too much ink already. 

A very old music "video" 
Thank you Mary. Between my cup of coffee, Xanax and you my mood has jumped over 6 to a 6.5.
Lets try to move it bit higher before I leave to run errands, shall we?

I was listening to Iggy Pop's version of this song the other
day and it was radically different. 
For its day, this video was (and still is obviously)
extremely racist but this song is so f'cking good.
On another note, its really funny that I hadn't heard the Beatles Baby You're a Rich Man for many years, but after playing it a few days ago I now can't go a day without playing it. So here's an encore.

You keep all your money in a big brown bag
Inside a zoo.
What a thing to do.

Depeche Mode People are People
Very experimental for its time, this song uses an sampling synthesizer to obtain different sounds from the world around them. You can hear it clearly in the beginning of the song which is matched brilliantly with the video in my opinion. This was covered in Synth Britannia.

The message from this song is really important. Whether it be a person who is homosexual to a person of a different race or style of dress or with diseases like Huntington's or AIDS  "I can't understand what makes a man hate another man, help me understand".

Eternal by Technikal
Hard trance is right. You'll either love it or hate it but nothing in between.

I had to refrain from replying to a comment that stated: "why does all techno music keep the same beat throughout the entire song...." with this answer "Why does pop music keep the same beat through out the song? (See Baby You''re a Rich Man and People are People for examples")

This early afternoon I'm leaving you with Paul Simon and Me and Julio Down by the Schoolyard

This is probably the most fun video I've seen in a long time.
Its really hard to stay down when watching this one.

And Paul Simon brings my mood up to a 7! Alright, time to go run errands. See you tomorrow.

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