To Be Frank Or Not: Absolutely Top-Hole; Beach and Views.

The Head can be charming, amusing, but sometimes sinister.....

So explains Michael Fassbender, regarding the head/ mask in the film " Frank " which I saw at the cinema with little D. , last Tuesday  (13 / 5 ).


The film is loosely based on the character ' Frank Sidebottom ', the persona of  the Late Chris Sievey,
read more here  Chris S.

However apart from the spheroidal head, the film is a composite of many characters including a couple of references to Captain Beefheart.

The storyline concerns a young out of musical work keyboardist,  beautifully played by  ( see guy on  right ) Domhnall Gleeson who gets an offer to join a group fronted by Frank and is then whisked off to Ireland for a very protracted music-making exercise in a rented cabin. Frank urges the group to experiment and wait for a creative spark before beginning, recording a record..

This of course, is a direct nod to the making of Beefheart's seminal work " Trout Mask Replica, "  in the infamous  pink house.

(TMR ) made here, eventually.

Following this the band, because of You Tube clips gets a gig in Texas.
At this point things go downhill.
It is a film of joy and despair, of hope pitted against depression and mental illness.

What will we do to obtain that creative input which drives our lives forward ?
An interestung question indeed.

The film was shot in Ireland, Texas and Mexico. The last two locations, judged by the evidence of this film will not get many tourist enquiries.

To sum up, a brave film, uneven, like life in parts, but always arresting and thought-provoking.



: ADJECTIVE: Chiefly British First-rate; excellent.
: The The Institute for Edwardian Studies lists this as an "Edwardianism" (term or phrase used during the Edwardian period).
If this expression does originate with indoor games, two possibilities spring to mind. Cribbage is a card game where scoring is shown by moving pegs round a multi-holed board. The first player who reaches 121 points (I think) advances his peg to the single final hole located at the top of the scoring board, and so wins.
Alternatively there was a popular indoor game called Bagatelle, which was a little like pinball, involving propelling a ball round a slightly sloped and usually nail-studded table with different scoring areas or holes in it. The scoring holes at the top offered the most points, since they were the most difficult to get the ball to come to rest in.

I'm like this theory regarding the origin of this adjective; " Top- Hole "

 This expression, pretentious , and a tad patronising naturally enough slipped easily into my lexicon.
Thus, if a stranger approaching me upon a walk addressed me with:
  " What a beautiful day it is. "

I would oft reply:

" Absolutely top-hole. "

My friend L. worked out a little routine. It went like this. If I said ' top-hole '; he would reply in a suitably gruff voice; " Ah! Topol and then warble a version of the Israeli  singer's greatest hit  ( from Fidler On The Roof ) " If I were a rich man da da de---- ;"  to the apparent confusion of any one present .
Worked for us though!


Now some shots for you.

The view from Bredon Hill.

The view behind the ' Farmer's Arms ' at Deerhurst Gloucestershire.

The panorama shows the contrast between the fields over
the fence and the pub garden.


Yesterday (16 / 5 )  D. and I  visted Weston Super Mare. It was warm, with few crowds and  a gentle breeze.
The council should be complimented on their efforts to  make the most of the resort. The Promenade looked recently re-vamped and litter free. Everything looked clean and ready for tourists.

Looking through the volley- ball net,  thoughtfully placed on the beach.

The wonderful, faithful donkeys still doing service.

 One exhibit from the sand-sculpture feature

Where have all the crowds gone ?

The New Pier. 

I was struck with  its curved design which  reminded me of the buildings
from last week's visit to the Olympic Park.

A lovely day by the sea.


Well as promised,  we have the sun.
Make the most of it.


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