Auntie Doris’s Tarot Card of the Week #52: The Star – 27th October – 2nd November 2014

StarOhh, my Nephew Michael likes this one, what with him being in a pop group and reciting his poetry out of his published book and all that. He thinks that he is a proper star, he does. The only thing is, that he ruddy well isn’t, apart from in his own minds eyes of course. And that’s what this card is trying to tell you. There is something that you reckon that you are pretty good at, and you might just be letting it go to your head. Watch your step. Pride comes before a fall.

That’s not to say you shouldn’t enjoy doing the things that you are good at. Just don’t take it for granted that everyone else will have the same opinion of your abilities as you do. My Raymond’s brother Cyril always fancied that he was a dab hand at the mouth organ. He ruddy wasn’t. He could only play one tune and that was “D’ye ken John Peel (with his coat so gay?)” and he couldn’t even play that properly without making little grunting noises and all dribble going down his chin.

That was just a party piece though. He never seriously fancied a life on the stage or anything. Not like our Michael. I’m sure he thinks that he’s the real deal. Like that Bonio out of U ruddy 2. The thing with these pop stars, is that before they know where they are they start believing that they don’t have to obey the same rules as anybody else. Then they are running around without any clothes on spilling their drinks all over the place willy nilly, and driving their cars into swimming pools. Not that our Michael has ever done that, but he did reverse his Citroen Picasso into one of them metal bollards at ASDA once. He cracked his ruddy back bumper. And I blame his obsession with pop music. He was probably thinking about doing pop concerts rather than where he was going. Typical.

Four things that you might do this week (i) Take up a musical instrument, if you haven’t already. If you have, try a different one. The humble mouthorgan is a good place to start. Don’t borrow anyone else’s though. One Christmas, I had a go at blowing on Cyril’s organ and when I sucked it all tobacco flavoured drool came out of it and into my mouth. Disgusting! (ii) Have a night in on your own, or with a very close friend, and behave like a pop star. Take all of your clothes off and have a few drinks in the niff. Remember to draw the curtains and turn the heating up though. What goes on in the privacy of your front room should not be viewed by any Tom Dick or Harry passing by outside. (iii) Do something that you think you are good at. Don’t worry too much about what other people might think. Just don’t get too big headed, imagining that they might think that you are really good. On the other hand, don’t hide your light under a bushel. Whatever one of them is when its all at home (iv) If you do drive to the supermarket, concentrate on your driving. And Don’t Forgrt to use your ruddy mirrors.

Auntie Doris’s All things must Pass #8: Shellac

Beatles 78
I never got on with them ruddy compacted discs. They were a right pain. I could never get the ruddy boxes open without snapping them, and then if I did get the box open, trying to get the disc out from that little plastic circle it was fastened to was just as ruddy hard. And As far as I was concerned, the music didn’t sound any better. Some people said it was, but I couldn’t tell the ruddy difference. Not even when I had my hearing aids turned up as far as they would go without whistling. No as far as I was concerned those compacted discs were as big a con as the new money. Just a way to sell people records that they had already got, at three times the price that they paid for them in the first place.
And before them they had the tapes. Cassettes and them eight tracks things. They were a ruddy stupid idea too. They used to get all taffled up and fasten themselves inside the workings of the tape player. My Raymond bought one because he thought it would be good to tape his own voice. Don’t ask me why. Men get these ruddy ideas into their heads. He only ever recorded himself saying things like “Hello… This is Raymond Speaking!” a few times before he got bored of the idea or the tape got all taffled up in the workings of the machine. He even taped my voice once. While I was talking to him from the kitchen, “You ought to be coming in here and giving me a hand with all these pots… doing something useful instead of messing about with ruddy silly gadgets all day. This beef stock is dried on to the jug rock hard. Mr Bisto will be rolling in his gravy…” It didn’t sound like me though. Raymond said that was because I was listening from outside my head rather than inside it, where I normally listen to myself from. I’m not so sure. It sounded like him pretending to be me.
Any road, I didn’t reckon much to tapes. And I didn’t reckon much to those vinyl records either. They were all right after a fashion, but you only had to leave them too near the fireplace and they got all warped and then you couldn’t listen to them properly without feeling seasick.
No, as far as I am concerned the only format for listening to music was the old 78rpm shellac. Shellac is a wonderful substance. Apparently it comes out of a beetles arse in India. And all the record companies used to send people out there to collect it. Regal Zonophone, His Master’s Voice, Parlophone, Homochord, they all had agents out in India looking after beetle farms to collect the precious Shellac which brought music to the masses.
As far as I am concerned there ought to be a national Shellac day, and pop groups ought to be queuing up to release their records in the good old shellac 78rpm format. Recorded music has never sounded better since. They still made them in Britain well into the 1950s, and in india, they carried on beyond that, with many of the Beatles singles released on Shellac. Imagine that, the beatles played on stuff out of beetles arses.
Nowadays its all these virtual Mp3 records, there might not be any hiss or crackle, but as far as I am concerned there isn’t a lot of soul neither. Give me King Oliver and his Creole band on 78 any time. Its just as if you are standing in the room with them, and a huge bowl of rice krispies snapping, crackling and popping. There’s nothing to compare these days. Its sad… but all things must pass