jackjanderson: (Fishing)
Hello Jack's friends page, [personal profile] lucymorningstar (his girlfriend) here.

Jack has gone off on a spontaneous trip with a couple of his old air force buddies for a few days, they've all hopped on their motorbikes with their fishing gear whch really is a hilarious site and they've gone over to France. He thinks he'll be back by the begnning of next week and says he'l catch up on spamming you all with classical music when he gets back!

Bye for now!
jackjanderson: (Moon Over Earth)
Day 14 - A song that you would love played at your wedding:

Felix Mendelssohn - "Wedding March" in C major, from his suite of incidental music (Op. 61) to Shakespeare's play A Midsummer Night's Dream.

It was, in fact, played at both of my weddings. I'm not planning on having another, unless polyamory gets legally recognised and Samantha & I can marry Lucy. And that's not likely to happen in my lifetime
jackjanderson: (Milky Way Blue)
Day 13 - One of your favourite 70's songs:

(yes, that's the full ballet. No, I don't expect anyone will watch it.)

Continuing on the theme of Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky and ballet we have Swan Lake. (Hey, it never specified a century and Swan Lake had it's premier in '77's... 1877!)
jackjanderson: (Jack & Daniel)
Day 12 - A song from your pre-teen years:

Tchaikovsky - Nutcracker: March

My mother, rest her soul, loved the ballet. My brothers and I would get dragged out to see The Nutcracker every Christmas. We'd get new suits, new shoes, haircuts. It was a very formal affair. I, admittedly, fell in love with the music and it's entire possibly my mother and Tchaikovsky are the root of my love of classical.

I still try and catch at least one performance of The Nutcracker every year.
jackjanderson: (Default)
Day 11 - A song that you never get tired of:

Georg Friedrich Händel - Messiah: Part II: Hallelujah

One of my favourite pieces of choral music. I adore all of Handel's Messiah but I would think it safe to say the Hallelujah Chorus that closes part II is the most well-known section of it. I always end up stopping wht I'm doing to listen and pretend I'm conducting!
I love how it has this deceptively light orchestral opening before rising and swelling with almost contagious enthusiam, then closing on a final solemn note. Truly remarkable.
jackjanderson: (Han Solo)
Day 10 - A song that makes you sad:

Ludwig Van Beethoven - Piano Sonata No. 14 in C♯ minor "Quasi una fantasia", Op. 27, No. 2, popularly known as the Moonlight Sonata.

There's something very evocative, very austere about the piece, it's almost funereal yet beautiful. Imagine listening to it, on a stormy sunday afternoon, when it's dark and the sky is only lit by lightning. A drink in your hand and a book. Beautiful.

Or a film noir seduction followed by death.

Fanfiction?

May. 9th, 2017 03:36 pm
jackjanderson: (Fishing)
I like to think of myself as being a fairly open-minded guy. I try not to be to judgemental of other lifestyles, considering mine is doubly alternative but I have to admit that every so often I come across something that I simply don't get.

On the internet, recently, I have discovered one of those things.

Fan fiction.

From what I can gather, it appears to be imagining characters from a tv show or movie or even the actors playing them are gay and writing porn about it.

Lucy is quite taken with it at the moment. She assures me it's 'hot'.

On one hand, anything that can get Lucy reading is a great tool. She wants to read and gets very frustrated with herself when her attention span doesn't allow her to.
I also keep meaning to speak to Samantha about reading books vs reading on the screen if it's the format that's helping her concentrate, and would be worth getting Lucy a Kindle?

On the other hand, however, I... don't get it.
jackjanderson: (Default)
That went really well, didn't it? Apparently I don't come on line often enough to do a daily posting but I am enjoying sharing some of the music I love (even if no-one else does!) so I'm just goingto go ahead with Days 3 to 9 in this post:

Day 3 - A song that reminds you of summer )

Day 4 - A song that reminds you of someone you'd rather forget about: )

Day 5 - A song that needs to be played LOUD )

Day 6 - A song that makes you want to dance )

Day 7 - A song to drive to )

Day 8 - A song about drugs or alcohol )

Day 9 - A song that makes you happy )
jackjanderson: (Moon Over Earth)
A long time ago, in a galaxy far far away, my May the Fourth Star Wars marathon would take up an afternoon. I could start at lunchtime and be done in time for a late evening meal. It was a trilogy - not a whole lot of film watching, maybe just over 7 hours.

Then the prequels happened and so the time taken doubled. That's more of a movie marathon. Now we start to weed out the weak. And of course the last couple of years there's been more increases which is even better.

This year. This year, we actually managed to do the majority of the watching ON the day. I don't work anymore, Samantha doesn't have classes on a Thursday. The rewatch often happens the weekend after the 4th, because of work etc

We started bright and early, 8am with The Phantom Menace. We finished up at 11pm at the end of Empire Strikes Back. We were all tired, and Samantha had class again today.

This evening we finished off with Return Of The Jedi and The Force Awakens.

If there's a better way to spend one day and one evening, I don't know what it is!
jackjanderson: (Crossword)
Day 1 - A song you like with a colour in the title

Day 2 - A song you like with a number in the title

Beethoven: 9th Symphony - Movement IV - "Ode to Joy"

Admittedly, this is a little bit of a cheat since due to naming conventions so many pieces have a numer in the title. It's still a favourite piece of music and a joy to share, and it's considered by many critics as one of his greatest works. Many consider it one of the greatest compositions in the western musical canon and in my opinion it's probably one of the best-known works in classical music. The symphony was the first example of a major composer using voices in a symphony (thus making it a choral symphony) and giving rise to its full title: The Symphony No. 9 in D minor, Op. 125: The Choral
jackjanderson: (A Little Piece Of Heaven)
Never let it be said that I do not look after my girls, or that I cannot cook. I admit I'm not the best cook in the world, much prefer to just cook meat on the bbq but this is Wales and I don't get the opportunity to do that as often as I like.

Samantha & Lucy spent the day out at Penrhyn Castle & Parc with the dogs. (I spent the day watching NCIS and Bones, my backs and knees weren't up for a day on my feet and they could do with some time together, they don't get enough) They came back all cold and wet and exhausted - but happy, which is the important thing. The dogs fast asleep in front the shower, the girls have showered and are flopped down on the couch under warm blankets. Aching feet have been rubbed and dinner has been served. I made sweet and sour pork stir-fry which was a hit all round and Lucy suggested I share the recipe.

I don't have a recipe, per se.
I mixed together pineaple juice, cornflour, tomato sauce, soy, sugar and vinegar. I threw some diced pork into a hot wok, cooked it through then set it aside. Fried the red pepper, chopped pineapple and onion, stirred in the sauce, warmed it through, added the pork back in. Served it with rice noodles. I even did the dishes!

I'm about the join them - and the cats - under the blankets and we're going to watch the 2008 Incredible Hulk. I'm not crazy about this version of Hulk, I definitely prefer Ruffalo as Banner but we're doing an MCU rewatch.
jackjanderson: (Default)
I've never tried one of these before but I've seen a few people posting these so I thought I'd give it a go (with some help from [personal profile] lucymorningstar on how to embed a youtube file)

Day 1 - A song you like with a colour in the title

The Blue Danube (or for it's full translated title By The Beautiful Blue Danube)
An der schönen blauen Donau, Op. 314, a waltz by the Austrian composer Johann Strauss II, composed in 1866. This version is played by André Rieu & his Johann Strauss Orchestra playing and is recorded live at Empress Sisi's castle; Schönbrunn Palace Vienna, Austria with dancers from the famous Austrian Elmayer Dancing School

Samantha and I danced to this at our wedding. And yes, we waltzed. It still makes me want to dance with her.
jackjanderson: (Jack & Daniel)
The internet, blogging spaces especially, make me feel like a dirty old man. We're going to completely ignore the fact that I am a dirty old man and focus on how young everyone else online seems to be.

I come across random blogs, start reading only to realise that the writer is in their 20s or 30s. I've joined [community profile] 2017revival and [community profile] addme and all the posts seem to be from younger ladies. I feel hesitant to start a conversation, to request to add them because I don't know how they'd feel about a... (and I use the term loosely) more mature man reading their posts.

I try to imagine how I would feel if the situation was reversed; if I were that age and found out that someone old enough to be my father were wanting to read my blog. I think I'd feel quite awkward. I doubt I'd be interested in reading what they had to say.

Do I necessarily feel comfortable reading posts by someone young enough to be my son - if not younger than him. Am I opening myself up for completely inaccurate accusations of inappropriateness?

I did an interest search for over 60s but it was unsuccessful. I did a google search for 'over 60s blogs' and learned a hell of a lot about how to dress as a woman over 60 which I'm sure would be really useful were I of the female persuasion. I offered to send the links to an amused Samantha* and she shot me a look that would make a lesser person drop down dead.

Then again, does age really matter? Isn't this whole thing about getting to meet people that I wouldn't normally meet. Doesn't science-fiction etc transcend barriers of age, gender, race, sexuality etc.

Or is my son right and I am 'too old' for this?

* Samantha is still many years from 60
jackjanderson: (Fishing)
I'm still not completely enamoured with my layout and I'm already getting bored of some of my usericons. So tell me, great Dreamwidth mind, where can I go to investigate some new ones?
jackjanderson: (Milky Way Blue)
I've seen a few people make this type of post, talking about what music they've been listenening to over the course of a week. I don't listen to enough music to do it weekly so I thought a monthly post would work for me.

According to my last.fm stats, my top played artists in March 2017 were:
Giacomo Puccini
Sergei Rachmaninoff
Sir Edward Elgar
Camille Saint-Saëns
César Franck
Gabriel Fauré
Georg Friedrich Händel
Ludwig van Beethoven
Ralph Vaughan Williams
Robert Schumann
I'm surprised Puccini was higher than Rachmaninoff - he does tend to be my favourite. I'm surprised Beethoven & Williams were so low in the list but it's interesting to see what I've been listening to laid out like that

There were no albums or tracks I listened to more than any others, nor any that stood as being a particular favourite but I'm going to try and make an effort to note down favourites in April

Currently I am lstening to Hoedown from Rodeo by Aaron Copland
jackjanderson: (Moon Over Earth)
I've come to realise as I'm reading blogs that I seem to spend a lot of time feeling the need to apologise for my fellow man, for the way so many men treat women, for the way so many women have been treated by men. It sickens me that there are men who think it's ok to continue making advances on a woman when shes made it clear she's not interested, and more than that.

Am I trying to say that I'm perfect, that I've never undressed a woman with my eyes, that I've never catcalled, that I've never thought of certain more manual labour as a 'mans job'?
No, of course I'm not. I do, however, know where the line is and not to cross it. I was raised by a strong woman and taught to respect women. To respect everyone, lets face it. To be a decent human being.

My son has been raised the same way and if I was to ever find out that he was treating women in a disrepectful manner, if I ever found out he'd broken a woman's consent... well let's just say he may be 30 but he'd still find his hide tanned for it!
(I tried to put a joking 'other than his mother, he can treat her however he pleases' but actually, no, despite my thinking shes an insufferable bitch, if I found out Charlie was treating his mother wrong it would still be the same case!)

I was always aware of the difficulties a woman can face. My wife struggles with gender bias a lot in her chosen fields. There is a colleague of hers who refers to her, even in earshot, as 'the cute blonde' - ok, I'm not going to argue with his assessment because she i but damnit they're supposed to be professionals, they're peers, she has just as many (if not more) qualifications as he does, she's published more, I'd like to say she's better respected.

Samantha says it's professonal jealousy combined with a masculine pride and not wanting to believe a woman could do better than her. I say it's a good job I don't have to see the arrogant fool more than once or twice a year. I'm personally not sure how she hasn't broken his nose yet!

I also understnd that would cause more trouble than it's worth and he'd just label her another emotional woman who can't control or handle herself.

I cannot understand men like him. I cannot understand the behaviour of so many men.

How are we in 2017 and still struggling with the same issues of gender equality?
jackjanderson: (Han Solo)
Apparently I've lost a stone and a half of weight since I've retired. OK there's no apparently, because I stood on the scales and they're the ones that told me I'd lost the weight since the last time I stood on them. I guess I should say that I've accidentally done it, unintentionally.

Regardless, I've lost 21lb. Or 9.5kg depending on which form of measurement you ascribe to.

I'm not saying I couldn't have done with losing the weight. Samantha has in fact been nagging me to lose weight for months and now that I've lost some I do feel better. If more continues to drop then great.

How have you unintentionally lost 21lb in 10 weeks, Jack? I hear you asking.
(You are asking, right?)

I'm not exactly sure. I'm drinking less coffee, I'm eating less cake and biscuits, I'm snacking less in general - and when I am snacking it's on the healthy things in the house; fruit & veg mostly.
This is all directly related to not being in the office. Also connected is getting more exercise - longer walks with the dog in the morning, not sitting at a desk for 8 hours a day, helping Lucy with the housework, more sex.

Shocking, I know. Eating healthy and more exercise = weight loss. I'm just not used to losing weight without making an intentional effort to do so.
jackjanderson: (Han Solo)
According to a small child in town today, I am the coolest old person they had ever seen. Possibly even the coolest old person, ever. Old people, you see, don't wear Batman t-shirts. This is what I've learned today.

While I'm pleased as punch to be classed as cool, I'm not sure how I feel at being seen as an 'old person'. Yes, I am old and yes I call myself old. But having someone else call me old is very different to knowing I'm old.
I'm not sure how much sense that makes.

Can I just take the 'cool' and run with it?
No-one's ever actually called me cool and meant it before

Samantha and Lucy, who I was having lunch with at the time, thought it was utterly hilarious. They say that I'm just old and not cool though. One day they'll both turn old, have people think they're old and then we'll see how they feel!
jackjanderson: (Rey)
I'm actually amused how 'changing the wifi password' so that Lucy & I can't get online has become Samantha's punishment of choice. She's right that coming online during the day is what's stopping us from completing our set tasks but even so. It makes me a sad pouty Jack.

We won't even cover the sex ban.

I'm now allowed online of an evening as long as everything's done during the day. Lucy still isn't so if you've not seen her update in a while that's why.

I'm playing catch up on my emails right now. I had over 100 and I've got it down to 60. Next up is catching up on anyone's blogs.

Lesson learned. Work first, then play.

About Me

I'm Jack, a recent retiree looking for a new hobby. Apparently 'annoying my girlfriend' isn't the best use of my days. Her opinion, not mine

I'm a life-long science-fiction and superheroes fan, and a voracious reader. I enjoy movies, fishing, astronomy, and gardening.

I live in Wales with my wife, our girlfriend and an ever growing collection of four-legged friends.

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