Quote Of The Day

"Victory goes to the player who makes the next-to-last mistake - Chessmaster Savielly Grigorievitch Tartakower (1887-1956)"

Sunday, December 31, 2023

New Year’s Eve Drinks…

Our usual New Year’s Eve pub crawl around the hostelries of Highbury was great fun. We only made it to five pubs but the boys all came with us so it was great fun nevertheless. 
We ended up in The Lamb for midnight. 

Friday, December 29, 2023

Arsenal 0 - 2 West Ham…

Well, that was rubbish. Rubbish performance. Rubbish result. At home too. 

Yes, West Ham outplayed us. But we were poor. 
Yes, we can highlight certain individual’s performances but we just didn’t take the chances when they came. 

We seemed to lack the cutting edge up front. The forward line are not as fluid as last year. We seem to be playing a lot slower at the moment. To breakdown stubborn defences, we need to move the ball a lot more quickly. 

On Sunday we need to come out fighting against Fulham and show everyone we mean business.

Onwards and upwards, my friends. 

Lovely @gaygooners meetup before the game though. 


Thursday, December 28, 2023

The Best of John Williams @ Barbican Hall…

Last night Darce and I went to an awe-inspiring concert at the glitzy Barbican Hall celebrating the iconic film scores of John Williams. 

Crowd-pleaser Anthony Inglis was conducting the 120-piece London Concert Orchestra. 

It was fab! Brought tears to the eyes. And Darth Vader pitched up too! 

There was music from: 
Star Wars 
Harry Potter 
Indiana Jones 
Jurassic Park 
Close Encounters of the Third Kind 
The Terminal 
The Witches of Eastwick 
Schindler's List 


Wednesday, December 27, 2023

Tuesday, December 26, 2023

Xmas Day…

 A lovely Xmas with Darren, Vince and Darce to stay.

We popped out on Xmas Eve for drinks and had a great Xmas Day too. 

Boxing Day was a recovery day for sure!

Sunday, December 24, 2023

Liverpool 1 - 1 Arsenal…

It was an exciting, thrilling and at times nerve-wracking game on Merseyside last night. Arsenal certainly brought their A-game. But then so did Liverpool.   

So perhaps it was a fair result in the end.   

Arsenal delivered the perfect start when defender Gabriel headed home from Martin Odegaard's free-kick after only four minutes.  However, Liverpool regrouped and were level after 29 minutes when Mohamed Salah thrashed a finish high past Gunners keeper David Raya at his near post after collecting Trent Alexander-Arnold's raking pass.   

The Scousers were perhaps a bit puzzled as to how a clear handball by Arsenal captain Martin Odegaard in the first half was missed by the officials and VAR. But, what can I say…  tough luck! 😅  

For me man of the match was Declan Rice. The midfielder's game awareness was peerless, cleaning up danger, picking passes and acting as a constant source of guidance to his team-mates throughout. Rice barely wasted the ball and his presence acted as a source of calm, ideal on the occasions when the storm raged.  

William Saliba took the honours along with him for a magnificent performance in defence but this was no rearguard action by Arsenal, whose clear intent was to win this game and they had it under control until Salah's equaliser. Yes, they had to suffer but this was not a timid performance. Arsenal were brave and willing to attack when the chance presented itself.  

Onwards and upwards. 

Well, I say “upwards”. We’re top of the league, my friends. Top. Of. The. League.   


Saturday, December 23, 2023

Crazy for You @ Gillian Lynne Theatre…

Last night Stuart and I and went to see Charlie Stemp star in the Gershwin musical Crazy for You at the Gillian Lynne Theatre in Londons glitzy West End. 

The show a bit of a jukebox musical of Gershwin songs from other shows although it’s largely based upon 1930’s rather anaemic Girl Crazy. 

The famous songs are good. The lesser known ones not so much. 

The dancing is good. The daft plot less so. 

The lengthy tap-dancing sequences saved the production. 

The show is closing early. Next week in fact. ‘Nuff said. 

Oh, and those famous songs?
Someone to Watch Over Me
Embraceable you
I Got Rhythm
They Can’t Take That Away From Me
Nice Work If You Can Get It

Friday, December 22, 2023

Cold War @ Almeida Theatre...

Pawel Pawlikowski's 2018 award winning film, loosely based on his parents’ lives, has now been made into a stunning play by Conor McPherson with music (and dancing) at the Almeida Theatre in London's glitzy Islington.
Rupert Goold’s production sees sensational performances by Luke Thallon (composer-conductor Wiktor) and Anya Chalotra (aspiring singer Zula) as they play doomed lovers episodically meeting across the years from post-war rural Poland to Paris and back.
The chemistry between the leads is simply electric. Stuart and I couldn't take our eyes off them.
Indeed, the acting throughout is top notch - as we have come to expect from the Almeida - as is the singing and dancing too. The Polish folk music of the original film is augmented here with new and existing songs by Elvis Costello. These new songs are hauntingly beautiful - up there with Costello's best in my opinion.
There are noteworthy performances too by Alex Young (choreographer Irena) and Elliot Levey (coarse Simon Cowel-esque Kaczmarek).
The whole show is brilliant.  If you like you shows to be stylish, moody, joyous, tragic, and tuneful you need look no further. 

Go see.

Thursday, December 21, 2023

Le Relais de Venise…

Had a nice little trip in to the City for an early steak supper. 

The place was Le Relais de Venise. You’ve heard of it right? Everyone has. Well, apart from me! 

I’d never been to it before. And it’s fab.

No menu as such, they just bring you a salad and steak and chips and it was gorgeous.

“Le Relais de Venise first opened in 1959, offering you the traditional French bistro meal of steak-frites as the only main dish. You receive our simple set menu of a walnut salad with mustard vinaigrette to start, followed by two servings of steak-frites with our famous house sauce. You can choose from a selection of French wine, cheese, and freshly in-house made desserts.”

Tuesday, December 19, 2023

Famalam Xmas 2023...

Last Sunday the famalam all got together for an early Christmas dinner at Essendon Country Club in Hertfordshire's glitzy Hatfield.
The food and booze were great, we did a secret Santa gift exchange, and we had a right old laugh. 
Father Christmas turned up too to entertain Manning and some of the other kids in the room. 
Santa's was clearly a Spurs fan and whereas his anti-Arsenal quips didn't go unnoticed, it was quite funny to see him grimace as the news came in of the Gooners' goals against Brighton. Ho ho ho.

Monday, December 18, 2023

Edward Scissorhands @ Sadler’s Wells…

Last Saturday night Stuart, Debbie, Shelley and I went to see Matthew Bourne’s ballet Edward Scissorhands at the Sadler’s Wells in London glitzy Angel. 
Devised, directed and choreographed by infant terrible Bourne and based on the classic Tim Burton film it’s a witty, bittersweet story of an incomplete boy left alone in a strange new world. The show features the hauntingly beautiful music of Danny Elfman and Terry Davies. 
In a castle high on a hill lives Edward; a boy created by an eccentric inventor. When his creator dies he is left alone and unfinished with only scissors for hands until a kindly townswoman invites him to live with her suburban family. 
Can Edward find his place in the well-meaning community which struggles to see past his curious appearance to the innocence and gentleness within?
Short answer. No. 😂
Well, it is Tim Burton!