December Update (Good News and a Grumpy Victorian Kitty)

The Black Cat, December (c. 1890)
“I can see exactly what you’re up to there, human, and I disapprove” (The Black Cat Magazine, December issue, c. 1890s)

Rather excitingly, Another Kind Of Mind hit 100,000 views yesterday. I’m absolutely thrilled by this – it’s really not bad going for a slightly eccentric and badly-promoted personal blog written by a chronically ill 40-something who should probably know better by now!

Self-deprecating jokes aside, it is genuinely a pleasure for me to see how many of you have popped by over time (“Popped by? Swarmed by is more like it!”), and the incredible diversity of where you are all from. In the ten years of writing this blog, I have had visitors from almost every single country in the world, something which never ceases to amaze me.

Continue reading “December Update (Good News and a Grumpy Victorian Kitty)”

November Update

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Until Sunday, there will be lots more spooky stuff as we come to the end of Halloween Week, plus a few men with odd-shaped balls and interesting moustaches will drop (goal) by in celebration of England reaching the Rugby World Cup final.

The Another Kind Of Mind Christmas is at the planning stage, but there will hopefully be an in-depth and no holds barred analysis of Santa, some unlikely festive music, vintage Christmas shopping, 17th century mince pies, a bit of wassailing, yet more pud, and a return to the small town of Christmas, Florida…

If you’re a music fan, there is still plenty of time to get your suggestions in for the new Recommended Reading book list. Just leave a comment with your titles, or drop me a tweet to be included on the list – I’m really looking forward to seeing what you all suggest.

Then, of course, there’s the General Election…

And finally… at some point over the next month or so, Another Kind Of Mind will hit a small milestone – 100,000 total visitors. A big thanks must go out to all one hundred thousand of you!

This is Halloween…

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Well, not quite yet… but Jack Pumpkinhead would like to welcome you to Halloween Week on Another Kind Of Mind anyway… (don’t worry, he’s friendly).

Watch out for lots of spooky goings-on around here in the run-up to the day itself, and remember – never, ever run towards a blood-curdling scream…

For more Halloween reading (and watching), click here!

Happy 10th Birthday, Another Kind Of Mind!

Kittens and a birthday cake (1914)
Kittens and a birthday cake (1914)

Remember the grumpy Victorian kittens who popped by a few Christmases ago? Well, they’re back, they’ve put on their best frocks, and they’ve brought a cake to celebrate Another Kind Of Mind’s tenth birthday!

Grumpily, of course. And they’re particularly grumpy since I think they shouldn’t really blow the cake candles out – scorched whiskers are not a good look…

Spoiling the kittens’ fun aside, I’m amazed to have reached ten years of this blog. With everything that has gone on in my life during those ten years (particularly healthwise), it’s a real achievement to have got this far.

Of course, I couldn’t have done it without you, dear readers. Almost 100,000 of you have visited from almost every country on Earth in that time, which is pretty astonishing for a personal blog with very little SEO and very basic promotion. You’re all amazing. Thank you.

Here’s to the next ten years!?

Happy Halloween!

The Skull Twins!

Hope you all have lots of spooky fun tonight – as you can see, the Skull Twins are getting the party started here at Another Kind Of Mind Towers!

I usually have at least one proper Halloween post for you and this year is no different – I may be a little tardy this time round, but I have some seasonal goodies for you which I will post over the next week or so.

Better late than never, I guess…. geddit!? *evil cackles*

I’m here all week.

If you’re a football fan, head over to And Still Ricky Villa (my other project) for ghostly players, cursed clubs, and a fiendishly evil Halloween football quiz – plus a guest appearance on the terraces by Freddy Kruger

Calling all football fans!

grass sport football soccer
Photo by Torsten Dettlaff on Pexels.com

Many of you know that I’m a passionate football fan, and I very much enjoy writing about the Beautiful Game. Over the past decade or so, I have become increasingly fascinated by the history of sport, and of soccer in particular. I wanted to write more on the subject, but felt Another Kind Of Mind was not quite the right space for that. Instead, I started something that is.

So, if you’ve been wondering where I’ve been for most of 2018, may I direct you over to my new project…

And Still Ricky Villa… is a blog about football. All sorts of football – everywhere and everywhen. And it’s not just me who is involved – we’d love to hear from football fans who would like to write for us in the future. Have a look here for more details if that sounds like you.

So far, we have mostly covered World Cup stuff, but there are a number of new posts in the pipeline, including pieces on the strangeness of goalkeepers, the new Spurs stadium (of course), and lots of spooky stuff for Halloween (seriously, you’d never believe the number of major football clubs that claim a resident ghost or two!).

Incidentally, the blog’s name comes from a very famous piece of commentary by the BBC’s John Motson on an equally famous FA Cup final goal, which was scored by the legendary Spurs player Ricky Villa in 1981 (see the video below – it’s a real treat of a goal, I promise!). This is one of my earliest football memories, and one of the reasons I am a Spurs fan to this day. Seemed kinda apt, really…

It’s come to McKenzie. What a good tackle by Graham Roberts. And now Galvin. Spurs have got… two to his right and Galvin wants to go on his own. Villa…. AND STILL RICKY VILLA! What a fantastic run. HE’S SCORED! Amazing goal for Ricky Villa! John Motson

We welcome writing and images from fans of all clubs, anywhere in the footballing world – we’re here for the game, not the rivalries. If you’d like to contribute to And Still Ricky Villa, feel free to get in touch! You can find loads of ideas for articles here, or pitch us something over on our Twitter account.

2016: That’s Quite Enough of That, Thank You!

Victorian Christmas cardI don’t know about you, but I am very glad this year is almost over.

Personally, it has been incredibly tough – but I am glad to say that the depression that nearly knocked me out entirely at the beginning of the year has mostly lifted, and I am almost fully back on my feet again after breaking my ankle and badly damaging the ligaments (although I still need a crutch to get around!).

I’d like to say a huge thank you to all the NHS staff who have treated me so well this year; from the ambulance crew who picked me up from the pavement and got me to Chelsea & Westminster hospital, the amazing A&E team there who got me sorted so quickly, and the physiotherapist at West Middlesex hospital who is currently getting me up and walking properly again, to my fantastic GP, the astute psychotherapist who got me thinking, and the community mental health team who have monitored my progress on these new meds with care and attention.

All these people are incredible, and their kindness and skill make me even more grateful for the NHS.

Also incredible are my family and friends (online and off), who have put up with a lot and have stuck by me nonetheless. Thanks to them for doing my shopping, brewing endless cups of tea, driving me places, making me laugh, reminding me to do my physio exercises, sending me great music and lovely messages, listening to me vent…. They know who they are – and they all rock.

And thanks to you, my dear, patient readers. For the first time ever, I have not posted anything on Another Kind Of Mind for many months, which is most unlike me and shows just how unwell I have been. I hope to get back to blogging regularly again in the new year – I have much I want to talk about. In the meantime, I’m planning to get a couple of Christmassy posts up over the next few days (if I can find the time), because Christmas isn’t Christmas round these parts without them! If you’re missing the usual festive fun, you can find links to all my previous seasonal posts here. Enjoy!

Happy Solstice and Merry Christmas to you all – and here’s to a better 2017 all round…

claire

x

June Update

Hello my dear, patient readers.

My ankle. Stylish, no?
My ankle. Stylish, no?

You may have noticed that I haven’t posted for quite some time.

I apologise for this. Sometimes life just gets in the way – and sometimes, like this time, it’s a matter of having to battle the serious ill health that occasionally pops up and completely floors me, this time resulting in a change of medication which is currently knocking me out in a most interesting fashion.

And just to make matters worse, I now also have a broken ankle!

My ankle is still very painful and I’m on some rather spacey painkillers too (which is only adding to the fun…), but I have been looked after wonderfully by all the medical staff who have treated me so far (yay for the NHS!), and by my fabulous family and friends, both online and off.

It is frustrating to be pretty immobile and unable to do many of the things I take for granted (including writing), and I’ve turned into a bit of a Dalek when it comes to the stairs – but at least I have a cast-iron excuse to lie on the sofa and binge watch Euro 2016 when it starts later this week!

As a result of all this medical mayhem (ahem) I may not be able to post much over the next few months, but I have put together a selection of bits and pieces that I hope you will enjoy – including some more choice vintage selections from the BFI film archive to be going on with.

I was also thinking that it might be nice to have a few guest posts from a few cool and groovy people while I’m laid up. If you are interested in contributing something, please get in touch (you can leave a comment here or tweet me).

Thanks, Sir George: Naming blogs the Beatles way

This is why I owe the late Sir George Martin (and the Beatles) a small and personal debt of gratitude.

When I started this blog in the summer of 2009, one of the first things I needed to do was give it a name. My previous blog hadn’t been called anything, it was just an extension of my MySpace account (yeah, I know…), so it really wasn’t a subject that I’d ever given any serious thought to. I spent several afternoons scrolling through the hours and hours of music on my laptop, hoping to hit upon a song title or a lyric that would fit in with what I was trying to express with this smart new blog I was so excited about.

Eventually, I gave up in frustration and just let the music play (as a wise lady once sang) while I got on with my work. I admit that I wasn’t really paying attention by the time the Beatles’ Revolver began playing – my mind had wandered off elsewhere, as it is wont to do. It would be true to say that I’m not the world’s biggest Beatles fan full stop (in fact, my views on them could well be considered somewhat…. iconoclastic, perhaps), but I do love Revolver. It’s the perfect transitional album between the ‘pop’ Beatles and the ‘psychedelic’ Beatles, effortlessly picking up where Rubber Soul left off, and it is arguably some of George Martin’s finest work.

Suddenly, that lovely, upbeat almost Motown-style brass opening of ‘Got To Get You Into My Life’ kicked into my headphones and Paul McCartney began to sing:

I was alone, I took a ride, I didn’t know what I would find there/Another road where maybe I could see another kind of mind there

I instantly sat bolt upright in my chair. That. Was. It. Another kind of mind – it was perfect. It was me. As someone of an imaginative bent who has also had experience of mental illness, I guess I’ve always felt like I do have another kind of mind. It just sounded right. Much later on, I discovered McCartney had written the song about his early experiences with cannabis, and that also amused me no end. It really was the perfect name for this blog then, and it still is today.

So, thank you George Martin – without your genius, the Beatles might never have made Revolver, and this Another Kind Of Mind would have been very different (and probably nowhere near as much fun)…

Another Kind Of Mind: 2015 Annual Report

Time for another annual tradition. A big thanks to the WordPress.com stats helper monkeys, who have prepared a 2015 annual report for Another Kind Of Mind (now go and have a nice cup of tea, stats helper monkeys!)…

Here’s an excerpt:

A New York City subway train holds 1,200 people. This blog was viewed about 8,000 times in 2015. If it were a NYC subway train, it would take about 7 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.