Thursday, January 31, 2008

What A Fabulous Week I've Had... So Far

Last weekend's gigs at Bow were great fun, all the acts did the business and I got to see one of my favourite acts Dave Haddingham two nights running. He was fab both nights too! On Saturday I got to see the fantastic Shappi Korshandi, who just makes me squeal with delight...she's ace! Even better, I got to meet her son, five month old Charlie who was holding court in the dressing room...what a gorgeous child!

Sunday I rushed off to the Barbican to catch the final day of their excellent Seduction exhibition. As someone who hasn't had a shag for the last three years by choice and not even desired one for the last six months, I did think it might kick start my incredibly dormant libido. These days the batteries in my Rabbit expire from old age rather than over use! Sadly not, but it was a brilliant show. I never knew Turner did porno! Two hours later I found myself in the shop stocking up on sale bargains! I got a Jean Michel Basquiat book and a double set of Richard Prince's Paintings and Photographs both for half price...and both excellent. I added to my stash a print of Jeff Koons performing cunnilingus on La Cicciolina (its art mate, innit?) a couple of little t-shirts and some notebooks! My god what a spree!

It was a glorious day, so I sat outside and had a coffee and a delicious yoghurt in the crisp winter sunshine. It was divine.

Monday saw me lunching with a good mate, and taking advantage of the Urban Outfitters' sale. I got a £400 Cacharel dress for £40! Also got a Levis jacket for £10, plus a few other little bits.

Tuesday night I got me some more culcha. Me and Trace went to the Tricycle Theatre in Kilburn to see a new play by Kwame Kwei-Armah called Let There Be Love. It stars Joseph Marcell as Alfred a rather cantankerous old man who is brought back to life by his Polish care worker Maria excellently played by Lydia Leonard. It was very moving, totally brilliant, and I loved every minute of it! Its on till February 16, get along to see it if you possibly can.

On Wednesday I was gigging. I was off to Billericay, a place I've never been to before and only really know of thanks to Ian Dury. I was on the bill with a fantastic pair of guys Kevin McCarthy and Rudi Lickwood. Kevin was our MC and as always he did a sterling job. I was on first and had a really lovely time. There was a group of fairly new mothers in on a rare baby-free night out, who were just loving the time off!

Before I knew it, my time was up and I was on my way back home. Goddam it was cold on that train station!

This morning I had my follow-up consultation with the fabulous Debra Robson Lawrence - the queen of semi-permanent eyebrows! I had them done at the beginning of the month, and once I got over the shock of seeing eyebrows on my face, I fell madly in love with them. So today we filled in the gaps and I had them made a bit thicker and darker. Debra errs on the side of caution when she first does them, which makes sense cos it is weird when you first have em done.

I reckon I will be back to her later in the year, cos in addition to eyebrows she does lips and lots of other fab things. Check out her website here she's an artist!

Tomorrow I am off to Cardiff Glee Club again, I am so looking forward to it. It's a cracking line up including Ian Cognito who I haven't seen in ages! 

Whatever you're up to folks, enjoy xx


Monday, January 28, 2008

Bit Of A Let Down

Soooooo I had a wonderful time in New York, hard to believe I've already been back a whole week.

The only disappointment I had was on the Friday morning. I went to the Guggenheim and decided to walk up there via Central Park.

The walk was amazing - I never thought I'd do the full length of such a huge park. It was a gorgeous crisp winter's day, and the further uptown I got the smaller the dogs doing their do do in the park got. In direct contrast the mink coats and diamonds got bigger and bigger!

An hour or so later I was at the Guggenheim, and as you can see from the photo above the outside was covered in scaffolding. Oh well, that means I'll have to come back again one day but there was further disappointment when I got inside and was told only two floors were open, the Kandinsky Gallery was the largest, but sadly I saw the major retrospective at the Tate last year, so I'd already seen all the paintings. Still I did get to see the amazing interior from the ground floor, and got a Richard Prince t-shirt for $7.50 in the sale...shame I missed his show tho.

Had an amazing walk back downtown too, almost bought a pair of miniature schnauzers in a puppy shop on Lexington Ave., thank god I have some self restraint! They were sooooooooo cute tho!


Friday, January 25, 2008

Nine and a Half Days...

... off the fags!

Hats off to Allen Carr! It's now been nine and a half days since I smoked my last ever cigarette, and I'm still going strong! It's the best way ever to quit!

I was working in the Isle of Man last night with Phil Butler and Brian Higgins, and all three of us were non-smokers! Phil's a fellow Carr devotee, and has been clean for just over two weeks, Brian's doing the nicotine patches. Phil had his copy of the audiobook CDs with him which he gave to Brian to upload onto his laptop, expect him to be free and clean soon too!

The gig was great fun, all three of us had a wonderful time. I really have a renewed zest for life these's great!

Off to MC Bow Jongleurs tonight and tomorrow, and I can't wait!



Soooooo last Saturday in New York saw me checking out Grand Central Station. All the times I've been to the city I've never seen this place except on movies. My goodness, it's breathtaking!

I guess the closest we've got is the revamped St Pancras, but as lovely as that is, it really can't hold a candle to the gorgeousness of Grand Central! If Euston Station looked like this we'd never complain about trains being late!

After that I went to collect my fabulous new Chanel reading glasses which needed a bit of adjustment, then headed downtown to Chelsea and SoHo. I saw the photographer Annie Leibowitz - the one who upset the Queen - with one of her kids. I'm a huge fan of her work but couldn't bring myself to interrupt her Saturday by telling her so.

I spent ages on Bleecker Street in all the little boutiques, including Marc Jacobs' shop which sadly didn't have any one thing I loved enough to buy.

The Coach handbag shop however did! I got the most amazing white leather messenger bag for the summer. Number 3 of a limited edition of 42, made from one huge piece of leather with real rose gold trimmings!

I wandered back uptown to Times Square and feeling in need of a sit down after all the walking, I went to the movies. With no real idea of what I fancied seeing, I randomly selected Juno. It was the best choice I coulda made! It's due to open here soon, and when it does get yerself along to see it! It's one of the sweetest, sharpest, funniest movies I've seen in a loooooong time!

The star, Ellen Page, is just brilliant, and once you come to terms with the guy who played Schillinger in OZ being a nice guy, as her dad, you'll love it as much as I did!


The Color Purple

Or as we would spell it, The Colour Purple!

So there I was, wandering back to the hotel from my wonderful visit to MoMA last Thursday afternoon and I happened to look up and see that I was outside the Broadway Theatre, where The Color Purple was on. Huge letters informed me that Chaka Khan was in it as well as BeBe Winans, and that it was presented by Oprah Winfrey.

Thinking I had a snowball's chance in hell, I wandered up to the box office and asked if they had any spare single tickets for tonight's performance. Musta been fate, cos they had what is called Rush Tickets, which were front row seats, for $26.50! I looked at the price list on the wall and saw that other front tickets were upwards of $120 each, and damn near snatched the man's hand off in my haste to get one of these bargain tickets.

Three hours later I was back and taking my seat that was so up front I was practically on the stage! I was so excited, here I was about to see my first Broadway show, and it was something I really, really wanted to see!

As the lights went down I was beside myself with anticipation, and two and a half hours later when the lights went back up, I was exhausted! What an incredible show!!!!!!!

Chaka Khan plays Sofia and plays her brilliantly. Her voice is fabulous, waaaay better than the last time I saw her perform live at the Hammersmith Odeon back in the mid-80's. Every single cast member is amazing but Zonya Love who plays Celie just took my breath away. Her acting, her singing, her presence, just blew me away and moved me to tears several times!

It was one of the most awesome nights I have ever spent being entertained anywhere in the world, and when it comes to London, I'll be there to see it again. If you get a chance to go, do, cheap tickets or full price, its worth every penny!


Size Frickin 2!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

A year ago I was waiting to get my gastric bypass, and whenever anyone asked me what size I wanted to get down to I'd joke and say size 0. At the time I was a size 26, so to be really honest any number with a one instead of a two in front of it would've made me very happy.

Almost twelve months on, and 10 stones off, I have exceeded my wildest dreams when it comes to weight loss, and last Thursday as I wandered into Abercrombie and Fitch on Fifth Avenue, I had no idea of what excitement was to come.

I picked up a couple of hoodies and then asked the very gorgeous, very disinterested girl on the women's jeans counter if I could try on a pair of size 28 jeans - that's 28" waist, not 28 as in one size up from 26 - she told me that was a size 4 in the US, and handed me a pair of skinny distressed jeans.

I wandered up to the first floor changing rooms, the hoodies fitted no problem, the jeans however, were very loose. I asked the changing room assistant what she thought, and she said I needed a size smaller at least.

I went back down to Ms Moody-drawers and asked her for a size 2, she looked at me and handed em over, I went back to the changing room, not for a moment expecting them to fit. Bugger me! They fit, and fit comfortably!!!!! No muffin top or owt!!!!!!!

I am a bleeding size 2, two inches away from a size 0!!!!!!!! How fucking insane is that??????

I love it!


Tuesday, January 22, 2008

The Most Gorgeous New Building in NYC

Sunday morning saw me make a pilgrimage, in temperatures of -5F, down to West 18th St and 11th Ave to see this amazing creation.

Designed by the godlike Frank Gehry, it's just a vision of perfection!

I love it, love it, love it!


Back Home

Wow what a fabulous time I had in New York!

Got loads to write about, and a fair old few photos to post but a bit too knackered to do it all in one hit tonight.

Suffice to say, I had the most wonderful trip, the hotel was great, the weather fantastic, the shops full of goodies that all seemed cheap cos of the exchange rate, the people fascinating and the culture incredible!

Best of all? I am here seven days on, still a non-smoker! Yay for Allen Carr - may he rest in peace.


Wednesday, January 16, 2008


Just a quickie as my cab'll be here soon, but I had to post.

I finished the Allen Carr book at 12.54am this morning, and smoked my final cigarette!!!!!!

I've washed the ashtrays and put them in the cupboard, slung out the nicotine gum, and those cursed Champix pills, and a brand new pack of 20 Marlboro Lights that I had in my handbag for today!

If there is anyone out there who's trying to stop smoking and struggling with it, my advice is get the book and quit!

Right New York City is beckoning this non-smoking skinny gal!!!!!!


Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Funny Old Couple Of Days

So today I finally got the internet problem sorted out. Why is it that some tech support people have as much (or as little) knowledge as I do? Anyway, it's working now thank goodness.

The Champix are still taking the gloss off everything in life, but I am determined to get this surgery in March and I have to be a non-smoker, so I'll do what it takes! I even bought the Allen Carr Easy Way to Stop Smoking book in Selfridges yesterday. The only time I've ever given up successfully was with the video of said book 18 years ago. I watched it on a Sunday night before bed and woke up a non-smoker on Monday morning. Here's hoping it works this time. Last time it was so easy that I got cocky and was sitting in a bar in New York about 4 months later and thought 'Oh one won't get me hooked'. Dozy mare that I am!

Tonight I've gone one further and downloaded the audio version from iTunes. It's loading onto my iPod as we speak. My plan is to listen to it on the flight to New York tomorrow and arrive nicotine free. How fabulous would that be? And I'd be able to sling out the rest of these godawful Champix tablets!

So, what else have I been up to? Well Sunday I caught the Pop Art Portraits show that the National Portrait Gallery before it closes, and it was wonderful, some fabulous pieces in there. What really struck me is just how much of an impact Marilyn Monroe made on artists. We've all seen Andy Warhol's portraits of her, but in this show you see about four or five other artists who felt the need to depict her too.

Monday I went and got my roots done, once again swapping Myra Hyndley for Agyness Deyn. Patrick my hairdresser has really gotten into it now, and the cut is a carbon copy of hers! Translation: it's bloody short! This will take a bit of getting used to, but luckily I've got my Paul Smith trapper hat, and it's gonna be cold enough in NYC to justify wearing it everyday!

Today I got my nails done, picked up some more dollars, and did some packing. To be honest, I'm not taking much at all, as tho this is primarily a trip to see tons of art at the Guggenheim and MOMA amongst other places, I also plan on hitting the shops with a vengeance! At $2 to the £1 who can blame me?

Have a good week folks xx


Sunday, January 13, 2008

Stopping Smoking...

Soooo it's been a while since I posted anything hasn't it?

I've been running about all over the shop, and then my internet connection decided to start f**king me about the other day, even getting online has been a nightmare!

Enough excuses tho. I'm here now.

I had a wonderful visit with my Dad last week, we have such a great relationship these days, it's actually a joy to spend time with him. Even the Virgin trains ran smoothly!

Been gigging all over the shop, Nottingham last weekend, EC1 this weekend - oh the glamour!

Nottingham was great fun actually, I was on with Colin Cole, Junior Simpson and George Egg, all of whom I haven't seen in a very long time. It was brilliant to watch them perform, and good fun to hang out with them. Needless to say they all were pretty astounded by my transformation.

The wardrobe experimentation continues by the way. I wore a tiny pair of black "leather" jeans that I got from New Look onstage last weekend, and it felt amazing! I am fully aware that at my age this rock chick look is totally inappropriate, but you know what, fuck it! I'm having fun! I even picked up a new tuxedo jacket in the Gap sale for £25, which was enough of a buzz, but it was the number in the back of it that really blew me away. I tried on the 12 - huge! - tried on the 10 - still too big - tried on the 8 - it fit and was actually a bit loose, but they didn't have a 6 so I got it! How mad is that???????

This weekend's gigs were at the lovely Comedy Cafe and were a blast. The line-up was cracking, Michael Legge as MC, Paul Sinha and myself doing sets with a variety of acts filling the middle slot. Thursday night was pretty low numbers-wise but my goodness, it turned out to be a lovely night. Friday and Saturday were fuller and a lot more challenging, but I enjoyed em nonetheless. Best of all I got to sleep in my own bed!

I am now on week two of the Champix tablets that are supposed to make me give up smoking painlessly. Well, week one did absolutely nothing for me, I smoked as many as usual, but then last Thursday I went on the stronger dose, and drastically cut down! I was smoking 40 a day, since Thursday I'm down to about 10 a day. If nothing else I am saving money!

All fabulous then eh? Well you'd think so. Sadly one of the side effects is that they can cause depression and increase appetite. Now I have resisted the urge to snack so far, but my god! I have felt so miserable! Apparently they work by suppressing the part of your brain that gets pleasure from smoking, but they also seem to be suppressing the part of the brain that takes pleasure from life! What's the point of giving up fags and feeling suicidal?

They come in two week packs, and I'll finish this first pack on Wednesday. I'm doing my best to persevere with them till then. They really do make you 'not bothered' about smoking so that is a bonus, and I have the added incentive of a seven hour flight to New York on Wednesday. How brilliant would it be to not be craving a smoke for that length of time eh? But, if I still feel like jumping from a bridge on Thursday - and New York has many bridges from which to jump! - I shall be dumping the pills and getting back on the fags big time!


Thursday, January 03, 2008

...And The Start Of A New One!

So how was your New Year's Eve? I hope you had fun.

I saw in 2008 with a glass of pink Tattinger courtesy of Lee, the manager of the Glee Club in Cardiff, and it was fantastic!

The gig was just one of those perfectly, smoothly run nights. The club was rammed, full of really great people who just wanted to laugh and have a good time. My fellow comedians - Jarred Christmas, Jon Richardson and Mark Watson - all kicked comedy ass, and none of the sequins fell off my frock so it was just wonderful.

The next morning I felt the effects of the champagne, but I still managed to get showered and catch my train. The journey home was painless - First Great Western were probably the only train company running a decent service!

On Wednesday I went to see the doctor, I'm having some surgery in March and I have to be a non-smoker to have the best chances of healing afterwards, so she gave me a prescription for a new pill called Champix, that's supposed to make giving up easier. The idea is that once they're in your system, if you do smoke it makes you feel sick, but you don't go cold turkey which was great news! I took the first pill this morning, and I can't say its had any effect but aparently it takes a few days.

I would love to be a non-smoker, I'm getting fed up of freezing my ass off nipping out for a smoke when I'm working, and I hate the fact that I am still addicted to something that isn't good for me. Add to that the cost, I could buy a whole new wardrobe in Primark every week with what I spend on cigarettes.

The main fear I have is that I will begin to eat more, I lost nine and a half stones last year and the last thing I want now is to begin nibbling at food as a replacement. Obviously since my gastric bypass I cannot eat anything like the amounts I used to, but I could still eat more than I currently do, so being aware is half the battle I guess. Perhaps I'll take up knitting!

Talking of gastric bypasses, I watched that horrific documentary on C4 last night called The Half Ton Mum. How tragic was her story????? A 29 year old mother of two gorgeous girls, who had gotten herself up to 64 stones! The irony of her situation was that only a gastric bypass could give her a chance of survival, but she was waaaaaaay over the safe weight to qualify for one! She did eventually find a surgeon willing to perform the operation, but by then I guess her poor heart was on it's last legs. Initially she recovered well, losing four stones in the two weeks after surgery, but then she suffered a massive heart attack and died. How fucking heartbreaking.

One of the experts said that the chance came too late really for her, if she'd been able to get the op a few years earlier she'd still be alive. That's what prompted me to push for mine, I was about a third of her weight, when I had mine, but ending up like that poor woman was my biggest fear for the future. Every single morning I give thanks to the Buddha for empowering me to push and push and push to get the surgery that I believe has given me not so much my old life back as given me a brand new life. If there is anyone out there reading this who needs the op and qualifies for it, then my advice is to go for it.

Phew that was a bit intense eh?

So today I finally got my brand new bed. I figured that after eight years of heavy weight on it, my old one was ready for the skip. I got a great deal on a gorgeous one from Marks and Sparks of all places, with a fabulous orthopedic mattress. The delivery guys arrived nice and early, and gawd bless them, they dismantled my old one and put the new one together for me. I do love being a girl!

I'm all excited tonight, one because I get to sleep in the new bed, and two cos in the morning I go and get my eyebrows tattooed on! I had the consultation a couple of weeks ago and loved the effect, so tomorrow it will be permanent. I can't wait! I just hope she doesn't flip out and make em look like Lea's from Big Brother!

After that I'm off to Nottingham for a weekend of gigging, ligging and jiggy-jigging, well gigging anyway. Whatever you guys are up to, hope you have fun.