The Contemplations, Rants & Reminiscences of DavidB327

Something Sensational To Read On The Train


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Pink Martini and other stuff
Body Painting1
davidbr1

Last night we saw Pink Martini (with the BBC Concert Orchestra) at the Hammersmith Apollo.  It was one of the best gig’s that I’ve seen, which indeed is what I thought when we saw them last year at the Barbican.  They started off with Ravel’s Bolero, which of course I’m familiar with but hadn’t hear them perform it before.   The addition of the orchestra enhanced the overall sound, but didn’t drown out the band, and the two (band and orchestra) performed together very well.    They got a standing ovation (I’m not sure how often this happens, but not too often at the seated venues I’ve been to recently).  Not surprise that they were brought back for an encore, and even less so that they finished off with ‘Brazil’.  Wonderful stuff!

 

The only downer during the performance was the smell of a take-away in the vicinity of where we were sitting (yuk).  Several people were looking around to see who had brought this much into the theatre, but the culprit was not apparent.  SG pointed out that it might have been the ventilation systems from the row of ’fast food’ joints at top of Fulham Palace Road pumping the disgusting smell into the theatre.  Hammersmith Apollo please take note – this is a poor customer experience for vegetarians.

 

We noticed that the performance was being filmed.  Hopefully this was by the BBC, as we’ll be able to watch it again.  As the BBC Concert Orchestra were on stage, I think we can discount Sky TV.

 

After the concert we had a meal at RSJ, which was very nice end to the evening.  We had some difficulty in getting there though, due to unannounced road works, which meant we were diverted back north of the river when we were about 100 metres from the restaurant.  Then we had to crawl down The Strand (which by the way is in a disgraceful state), onto Trafalgar Square, and back to the Houses of Parliament to get south of the river again.  We got there with about 10 minutes to spare.

 

On the subject of the poor state of UK’s roadways – I was quite amused by a news report earlier today, which concerned a competition to find the city in Britain with the worst roads.  I was surprised to hear that it was Sheffield and not London or Blackburn (well 40 years ago there were 4000 so there must be a lot more than that now), which must mean that Sheffield is somewhere to avoid (well I knew that anyway).  Amongst the people interviewed was a representative of the local council, who pointed out that they had a team of inspectors, and that any potholes were always fixed within 24 hours!  In the BBC one particular pothole was indeed fixed within 24 hours, but that is of course because the TV crew were there on the first day.

 

Funnily enough were reported a particularly dangerous pothole a few years ago to Southwark Council, and were told the same rubbish.  There is a big difference between a Service Level Agreement and actually meeting the SLA.  What prompted us to contact the council because of this pothole was that the passenger door handle fell off after the car half disappeared into it.  They quite rightly paid for the repair, and at the same time as informing us that potholes are filled 24 hours after being reported, they offered to send someone from the Roadways department to inspect the site with us.  A tempting offer, but we declined to take them up on that one.   Amazingly enough, despite being reported it was not filled within 24 hours, but months later. 

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