Wednesday, 20 April 2016

Brian May - get a haircut

I wish Brian May would get a haircut.

I saw a photo of him - bizarrely peeping out from under a crinoline dress - the other day, and my first thought was 'Marty Feldman'. Then, with mounting horror, I began to understand how I was mistaken for him by a Big Issue seller last year, after I had let my own hair grow a little too long.

Don't get me wrong, I am almost childishly proud of my hair, just not as blindly proud as Brian is of his. Even in the days when that sort of hair-do was fashionable, they were made of wigs, plonked onto shaven heads. They made no pretence of being natural.

Brian is obviously surrounded by sycophants who let him get away with anything, just because of his virtuosity with a guitar. I do not play guitar, so the people around me do not hesitate to tell me when I look like a twat. This - to my mind - is a plus, but I have always been a 'glass half full' sort of person.

I would never have made a private detective, because I can be spotted for who or what I am from about two miles away. Since my hair turned white, I can be spotted from 10 miles away. A local painter recently painted a picture of our local pub, and included me standing outside it, talking to an unknown and possibly unreal person.

This tiny portrait of me was made with about three brush-strokes, but after one glance, everyone says, "That's you, isn't it?". Very long legs with an average torso, and a great clump of unrealistic, white hair, is me in a nutshell.

The other thing that Brian May and I have in common is an interest in astronomy. For me, it was one of many passing fads which leave behind a lasting trace of romantic wistfulness, but for him it is almost a second profession. I believe he is highly qualified and highly thought of in the world of star-gazers.

During the heat of my amateur passion with telescopes, I would be astounded at how many people there are who take no interest in anything outside of the Earth's atmosphere, especially when you consider how much stuff there is out there, compared to how much stuff there is in here.

The thing is, hardly anyone looks up. Before my neck seized and before I became compelled to hunt for small change in the gutters, I was renowned as someone who was always looking up.

I think I remember when I first acquired this reputation. It was many years ago, when the first pair of Peregrine Falcons arrived in Bath. I would hear the now familiar screeching of a Peregrine calling to its mate or offspring, and I would look up, scanning the sky until I located it.

On clear nights, I would always scan the dark skies using 'averted vision' until I located the tell-tale blur of a galaxy or nebulous star-cluster. The Seven Sisters, for instance.

It is time to go back to the spire of Norwich Cathedral, and look down to the pub car-park again. The Peregrines should be laying eggs any time now.

33 comments:

  1. I dont like Brian May, always too pleased with himself. The Norwich falcons have laid their eggs, 3 I think.

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    1. Ooh. I had better get on that camera today, then. I don't know what is happening to the Bath pair, but it is on the same system, so I'll connect to that as well. Goodbye Summer.

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    2. Actually, that's not a bad girl's name. Just visited Norwich and - like Bath - there is a bird sitting on eggs and snoozing. This is the beginning of more wasted time...

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    3. Our records here in Social Services are full of Summers. I just checked the eggs and there's 4.

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    4. Oh, I'll stick to Britney then.

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    5. I used to work with a Summer. She was a meth head and an all around terrible person. I'll never think of that name without remembering her awful teeth and truly awful personality!

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    6. Ok. I'm convinced. Bad idea. Forget it. I wish I had never thought of it.

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  2. I remember you mentioning the camera on the Cathedral before, but I did not know until today that anyone can link on to see. This is amazing, thank you, Tom. Lovely weather in Norwich. Greetings Maria x

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    1. It's a good service. You will become obsessed, and get up in the middle of the night to check. You will be in tears when one dies by flying into a glass wall - I've been through the lot....

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    2. You are right. Although I did not get up in the middle of the night but, I did go and look first thing this morning! The one in Bath I see, I looked at it last night, is also visible in the dark. This is beautiful. Thank You.

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  3. Tom, I remember seeing a photo of you that you quickly took down. Your white hair was most impressive! I loved it!

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    1. I think that was the one where I also took my trousers down.

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  4. My only star-gazing is done in the Summer, when I look at the Milky Way with amazement through my cheap £20 binoculars. I am always astounded by the hugeness of it all.

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  5. Since I live in the country, far away from city lights, I can see lots of things in the night sky. Last thing I look at every night. I used to float in our pool in the evening and watch the stars come out. There is an iPhone app that when you point your iPhone at the star or constellation, it tells you what it is, etc. The grandkids loved that.

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    1. I have Stellarium installed on this machine. iMacs are a bit too big to take outside, though.

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  6. Stargazing is not easily done in NYC. Perhaps that is why I enjoy looking at the phases of the moon so much.

    When I do visit areas without much electric lighting, I am completely dazzled by the stars.

    I'll resist commenting on two-legged stars that we do spot around these parts.

    Best wishes.

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    1. Come on Frances. Do tell. You must see them all of the time. When my friend visits NYC she see lots of them during her short visits.

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    2. In NYC? I doubt it. NY State, maybe...

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    3. Or maybe from the top of Trump Tower?

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  7. Hello!
    Being new in this part of the world I was eager to know what could be found in the british bloggers mind. I am pleased with what I've found so far! And so this post caught my eye and I just had to take a look. Brians hair was always appealing to me as a teenager, but I agree, recently he has began to resemble Doc Brown in Back to the future.... Still, Brian is Brian and I still believe he is one of the greatest. I sure would like to see that painting were you were identyfied by three strikes with the brush, amazing. I'm from Sweden and find it most delightful to read blogs in this area. I'll be back to read more of your posts another day, right now dinner is waiting to be finished. Until then, keep watching the stars, both heavenly and earthbound!!

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    1. Hello and welcome to you, Fairtrader. Let's speak again soon.

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    2. Well, I'm much obliged, thank you!!!
      I'm contemplating the discussions amongst your friends here and it's fascinating, more british than my worst prejudice, I love it!
      Our family live in a wee village, close to the sea, hence some of the comments in my posts.
      I am actually horribly ignorant about the facts of the starry skies, but since darkness is plenty we do see a lot of stars. Our closest neighbour have filled the woods with birdhouses, you'd like it, it's for the owls. We have about four species, none that carries letters, a bit disappointing really.
      I'll drop in on you again, enjoy the weekend!

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  8. I'm an up-looker too. The Seven Sisters was something I could recognise in the sky when I was younger but staring out into the universe makes me a bit afeared.... I also think Brian May needs to cut his bloody hair....

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    1. I'm looking forward to death, so I am not afeared of the universe. I am afeared of Brian May's haircut though. too close to home.

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  9. I just wish that the farmer could beg a bit of Brian May's hair - my farmer is almost completely bald. Although I read someone the other day saying it is a good idea to see the bald patch as a solar sex panel. That made the farmer laugh - not sure what other effect it might have as sunny days are as rare as hens teeth up here in Yorkshire.

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    1. Funny days are almost better than sunny days. Fried brains can produce some more unpleasant side effects, though. I hope he wears a hat - to bed...

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  10. In our area of France there is very little light pollution and so we have some wonderful starlight. I have been known to lie back on the lawn chairs and gaze at all the wonder. I know nothing of Brian May but did see the picture of you in a wonderful overcoat looking ever so handsome and elegant!

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    1. A friend of mine decided to lay back in a garden metal recliner one night to watch a thunderstorm, and was struck by lightening. Some people have all the luck.

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  11. The best place for stargazing is New Zealand - the night sky is fantastic.
    As to Brian May and his hair - at his age he just looks pathetic - and I don't care how famous he is .. and I'm a Queen fan ! Old men and ponytails - how sad !

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    1. Young men with ponytails are bad enough, but older ones... but I suppose it gives people an advance warning.

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    2. Some do carry their long hair quite well, mind you. For instance Ian Mcshane and Gary Oldman, but perhaps they don't classify as old?? Young men with these immense beards however is such a horrifying sight. You live in New Zealand, Coppa's girl?? Oooh. Envy!

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