Monday, April 22, 2019

Fox in Socks

Back in May 2017, I agreed to read the Cheesecake Factory Menu to raise money for refugees. They had to get to $500,000. It was the idea of Sara J Benincasa, comedian, writer and activist. People started donating. We all hoped that Cheesecake Factory would come in and donate enough at the end to get us up to the total, but they didn't seem very interested. So, given that enough money had been donated to reach the intermediate goal of me reading Dr Seuss's Fox in Socks, I agreed cheerfully to read Fox in Socks.  But the question was... when?

Because almost immediately I went off to work on Good Omens. And my life was put on hold for two years.

When I came back from making Good Omens, it was top of the list of things I needed to do. Fortunately, I'd been practising for two years, or at least, reading Fox in Socks to Ash. Here you go...

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Saturday, April 13, 2019

It's been a while...

I finished the process of making Good Omens into television at the end of January 2019.  It's been ten weeks since then and I'm only just just starting to feel human again. And not yet a laughing running tapdancing human, more a sort of baffled, awkward vague human who only remembers the word he was searching for about five minutes after he no longer needs it. Like Charlie on the last page of "Flowers For Algernon". I'll probably arrive back at normal humanity-with-a-brain somewhere in June.

Amanda is on tour 3 or 4 days a week, and home the other 3 or 4 days. (Here's her tour schedule: I'm a home-husband, trying to remember how that writing thing I used to do went, and getting the Ash time I missed in December and January as I finished Good Omens.

Ash is keeping me amused and delighted. Mostly by talking, sometimes by singing. He fell in love with christmas songs at Christmas, and they are only just now starting to be supplanted. Which is good for those of us who feared that the reign of Frosty the Snowman and Rudolf the Rednosed Reindeer would never end. Currently his favourite songs are Harry Nilsson's "Coconut" and Harry Belafonte's 'Banana Boat Song', which quite often means an unusually large voice coming out of a small boy at unexpected moments, belting out "Day-o! DAAAAAY-O! Daylight Come an' mi Want To Go Hooome!"

Me: Perhaps you could use your quiet inside voice for that, Ash?

Ash (very politely, as if explaining something to someone a bit slow): No, Dadda. I need to be very loud. Do you understand? DAAAAAAAY-O!

This is Ash today, singing (quietly) this morning:

The squawking noise in the background is guinea fowl... 

This is because we have a very small flock of guinea fowl here.  And they squawk.

They also remind me a little of a flock of small dinosaurs, and they make me smile. We had twelve last summer, and then one day we had eight, and we had eight all through the autumn and the winter.

The collective noun for guinea fowl is a confusion, and this is both apt and accurate.

Our neighbour Caroline (she's a potter, and she recently made me a Perfect TeaCupMug -- it's enormous!) does all of the looking after the guinea fowl, and I look proudly and fondly on because they spend their days wandering around eating ticks and thus, I hope, decreasing everyone's chances of getting Lyme disease here in prime Lyme disease country.

I worry about mysterious predators, so I automatically count the guinea fowl when I see them.

A couple of weeks ago the number dropped to seven. I was sad, assuming that the fowl in question had been eaten by something local with teeth or talons.

I mentioned this to Caroline. She took me a little way into the woods and she pointed out the missing guinea fowl, who believed herself to be perfectly camouflaged, sitting quietly on an awful lot of eggs.

We pretended we hadn't seen her and walked away, then immediately googled how long it takes guinea fowl eggs to hatch (about 28 days). Fingers crossed that in another two weeks we will have keets (which is what you call baby guinea fowl).

It's been years since I've blogged regularly. Let's see if I start again now. (I might. It's a good warm-up for writing and I'm looking forward to being a writer again.)

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