Friday, August 27, 2004

Back in Brighton

Back in Brighton now after lengthy break in deepest Oxfordshire. Compared to there, Brighton is a huge metropolis, and it's a little odd to be back still.

Had a good day in Church Road Studios yesterday with Hush Collector. Brian came all the way from Wales to drum for us, and Dom popped in to play bass. Both added great contributions.

Just waiting to my friend James to arrive from Leeds for the weekend now. Will continue the task of trying to persuade him to give up the cheap cost of living in Leeds for sunny (?) Brighton.

Thursday, August 19, 2004

Greetings from Oxfordshire

After a pretty ropey journey in rain on hateful M25, I am now in Stonesfield, Oxfordshire at my parents' place - which is a real haven. Have caught up with my niece Rachel - she is much bigger now (nearly 18 months) and a real monkey. She enjoyed dancing to the Assistant video when I put it on. I think she's going to be a drummer when she grows up.

Am determined to finish reading the last Philip Pullman book - it's taken me ages and I'm fed up with it now but must finish it!

Wednesday, August 18, 2004


It's a week day and I'm not at work! Rejoice! I'm off now until 1 Sep thank goodness. Expect despatches as from tomorrow from the wilds of Stonesfield, Oxfordshire, where I intend to little else but sit in my parent's garden and read.

Monday, August 16, 2004

Hungover at Hanover Day

Boy those cocktails were strong. Which made Hanover Day a nice gentle activity for a Sunday. Several streets of stalls and the church open all added to a true community feel. I bought some old NMEs from the 80s only to find all the interesting bits cut out, never mind. Saw a handwritten sign on a house saying 'For Sale: £235,000' - uh oh, we're back to housing again...

Moving / Thai food / cocktails

Saturday was a long day helping Jon & Vic move flats, including a trip to the tip and much lifting of boxes. Excellent evening celebrating Keith from Fuji Heavy 's birthday at Muang Thai followed by cocktails at Blanch House, which I'd never been to before.

Friday, August 13, 2004

Last night's gig

The gig went well last night, despite my reservations about the ridiculously diverse line up (us, followed by synthy Morcheeba like pop, followed by Nickleback type rock). Jonathan has put our demo on his blog here if you'd like to hear some songs.

Thursday, August 12, 2004

Assistant are happy to help you

Assistant, the band I play guitar in, are playing tonight at the Pavilion Tavern in Brighton. We're on first (as usual) at about 8.30 and it is free.

Playing live is fun, but all the faff getting your gear to the venue and then hanging around is always a pain. Having had one of my amps broken by a band we played with a while ago (I mention no names), I am cautious about equipment sharing, but it seems tonight I have to take my last remaining working amp. Oh for roadies to do it all for us - one day maybe.

University of Sussex

I have quite a soft spot for the University of Sussex, having both studied and worked there.

They launched a new website today and I think it looks good.

Tuesday, August 10, 2004

Brighton and Hove busses owe me 1p

On handing the driver of a Brighton and Hove bus £1.31 (due to an awkward combination of 5ps and 2ps), I waited for my change. "What?" he said. "1p change?" I asked. "I don't have any 1ps", he growled, before proceeding to accuse some kids of smoking pot.

If this happens another 129 times I will be owed one single journey.

Monday, August 09, 2004

A rant about housing

Having spent a relaxing weekend in Sheet in Hampshire, the return to Brighton made me think about the different world that 'the countryside' is from city living. This was further prompted by an article in the Daily Mail that I had the misfortune to read titled 'a blight on this pleasant land' which talks about "the non-existant housing crisis' and how Prescott is planning to concrete over the countryside.

We have the lowest levels of house building since about the 1920s, huge waiting lists for housing, soaring house prices and thousands of homes lost through the right to buy. When will the nimbys, the CPRE etc. realise that unless we seriously start addressing this problem, rural communities especially will end up populated with nothing but wealthy pensioners with no one living in their communities to work in the care homes and hospitals that they will increasingly rely on?

As for city living, having lived in numerous converted flats with paper thin walls and ceilings and all that means, I am now a convert to purpose built flats. But where are the innovatively designed new developments we should be getting? Where is the Embassy Court of the future? And would such a buidling be allowed to get in the same appalling state in future? Would people other than "key workers" be able to afford to live there?

Hmm, worringly for a Monday night, it would appear that I do actually care about the sector in which I work...

Friday, August 06, 2004

childhood beliefs

What did you used to believe as a child?

Good site.

Good old George

George Bush: "Our enemies are innovative and resourceful - and so are we," the US president told a high-level meeting of Pentagon officials.

"They never stop thinking about new ways to harm our country and our people - and neither do we."

I'm going to miss this sort of thing after November.

civil servants

Had a meeting yesterday at the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister in London. It wasn't a very productive meeting, and we were astounded that the civil servant we met with, who works in the housing directorate, didn't know that mortgage lenders now routinely lend higher multiples of people's salary than 3.5. Do these people live in the real world? Scary.

Housing is much higher up the political agenda - 'key worker' housing is now quite high profile. As to widening the definition of who key workers actually are, to include those not employed by the public sector but still providing key public services, it seems that this would fall foul of EU laws on the state subsidising private companies. Which is unfortunate when at the same time so many public services are leaving the public sector.

Right, I'm boring even myself now - and it's only my third blog entry, oh dear.

age worry

Brief moment of worry over my age when completing my profile - it told me I was 31. Then realised the birthday date input was in American format and I am now restored to 30 - phew. Always been a problem with a December birthday - in 2003 I was not 30 and now I am. Not that it bothers me or anything. Someone told me that "men come into their own in their 30s" and I had to refrain from saying that I had been coming into my own since about the age of 11.


Right, er, hello. First posting. Why Powerful Pierre? It was a nickname my Dad had for me, I don't know why. Not sure what I will be talking about really, but it will no doubt include some or all of the following: reports about various musical activities in either Assistant or Hush Collector, pub-based outings in Hanover / Kemptown area, gig reports and musings on musical recording artistes, progress (or lack thereof) reports regarding DIY in a 1970s style flat, lengthy moans and small successes about working in a communications role in the housing sector, Brighton type things, updates on language and teeth acquisition of my niece Rachel, occasional posts from rural Oxfordshire when at my parents, political musings (esp in Nov 04 and May 05), and anything else I can think of.