How this blog exploded.

Mr Watson and friend solve problems via the medium of genius...

So, this is what it’s like to be popular.

You write one post on “Sherlock” season 2’s finale (and season 3’s green-light) and it goes – as they say – viral.

I thought that something was going on when I looked at my WordPress site statistics and noticed a bit more traffic than I usually get in the middle of the week.  This happens from time to time, but the visits that I was getting were skewing ever higher.

My fatalist brain suspected hacking or spam-bot infiltration of some kind but the truth was rather more benevolent – the BBC’s “Sherlock” mini-site had automatically selected my post and put it up in their blog buzz section, which caused views to go utterly hat stand for the best part of a day.

Fame! Sweet, small-time, nerd-o-riffic Internet Fame!

Things are now getting back to normal and the view count has chilled a bit – which is probably how I like it.  Imagine the pressure of having to entertain people day in, day out and not having the first clue about how you’re going to go about it!  It doesn’t bear thinking about…


Back from the Boneyard

Cryptic title, huh?

It might help if I were to tell you that it refers to a song by a British hard rock band, Little Angels, who were active from the mid-1980’s to the mid-1990’s.

No (visible) tattoos? No piercings? What kind of clean-cut lunacy is this?

And why am I mentioning a song that you’ve never heard, by a band that you don’t know, on this of all days?

Well, Little Angels have reformed and will be one of the bands playing the Download festival in the UK this summer, which is all very nice but hardly earth shattering news.  Once-dormant Nineties rock band re-ups for a festival appearance – it’s the kind of thing which happens every year (see also Ugly Kid Joe, who are playing Download 2012, too).

Where this all comes together for me is that Little Angels are inextricably linked with my love of music, with my formative years and with the place where I spent much of my life growing up.

I was born in Scarborough, which is a small seaside town in North Yorkshire, in the north of England.  It’s the kind of place which buzzes in the summer months and slams abruptly to a halt once September rolls around.  Living there in the 1980’s was a chastening experience.  It was too far away from the major cities in Yorkshire – Leeds, Sheffield, Bradford – to really enjoy anything like a music scene, and so going to see a band live was a matter of seeing a local group and hoping that the cold weather and lack of anything much to do in the town had encouraged them to stay indoors, practice and be worth seeing.

Behold - 1980's rock hairstyles. Look upon this, BMTH fans, and weep at your good fortune...

Little Angels – or Mr Thrud, as they were once named – were one of those small local bands who went on to amount to something in the wider world.

Led by corkscrew-curled screaming hellion Toby Jepson – a singer whose command of the RAWK! scream was undoubted – and comprising brothers Bruce and Jimmy Dickinson (lead guitar and keyboards respectively), bassist Mark Plunkett and drummer Mark Richardson, the Little Angels were arguably responsible for getting me into music in a big way. So, blame them when I post some story about a terrible Euro-Metal band – it’s sort of their fault.

I guess it’s always the way – a local band, even if they’re playing the crappiest dive club, can seem like stadium-bestriding rock stars merely by the act of getting up on stage and having a go.  When you live in a place where the default pursuit on a weekend evening is to get obliterated on cheap beer and get in fights, seeing a great band like Little Angels going on to release records, tour internationally and not settle for a mundane existence.

They never became anything more than a momentarily successful British rock band – similar in popularity to You Me At Six or Bullet For My Valentine – but I loved them and I’m really glad to see them back.  Hopefully this reunion will lead to more shows and recording – you can bet that I’m getting tickets if they ever show up in my neck of the woods.

Why not indulge me by taking a look at the tune which gives this post its title – “Boneyard”?   Did this really come out in 1991?  That’s like a whole Wolfgang Van Halen ago…


Canine update…

A small dog always follows her nose...

She’s not quite out of the woods yet, but the outlook for Minnie is perhaps a little brighter than it was yesterday.

Our Vet x-rayed Minnie today and thinks that she might have arthritis localised to her back – perhaps due to an old injury sustained when she was a stray or in her past.  She’s going to be on anti-inflammatory medication for the next few weeks in the hope that this makes her current leg problems improve.

Thanks for the good wishes, nice internet folk – and I hope that I have even better news for you in the weeks to come.


Light posting for the next few days

Hey look - it's the cutest terrier in the world.

As the heading suggests, I’m probably not going to be around for the next few days.  Simply put, my dog Minnie isn’t very well – surgery is a possibility – and I’m not really in the best place to do much writing until I know when she’s going to be better.

What's going on just out of way of the camera's lens?

I’m sure that my absence won’t make a dent in your daily routine, but I wanted to let you know in case you think that I’ve summarily ditched the blog for 2012.  That’s not my kind of New Year’s resolution.

Get well soon, little lovely pup.

I hope to be back into things by the end of the week – and I hope you’ll understand why I have other things on my mind at the moment.

Geeky New Year’s Greetings

Knock-Knock. Penny? Knock-Knock. Penny? Knock-Knock. Penny?

Believe me, that’s one of the best ‘Geeky New Year’ images that I could find via Google’s Image Search which wasn’t in some way peturbing.

In a development which was in no way unexpected, Mrs Rolling Eyeballs and yours truly elected not to see in the new year and took to our slumbers with indecent haste after sating Mrs RE’s geek side by watching an episode of “Poirot” – she’s a big Agatha Christie fan and got to combine her fan favourites yesterday by watching the Tenth Doctor episode with Christie as a protagonist yesterday.

A famous, fictional Belgian, yesterday.

Hopefully, your new year’s festivities went well and brought with them enjoyment and the odd moment for contemplation. I’ll take this opportunity to wish you and your loved ones a happy, prosperous and healthy 2012 which is devoid of Roland Emmerich-like mayhem.

If you’re keen to stop by once in a while, I’m keen to keep blathering on about nothing in particular.