Saturday, April 23, 2016

A LOST YETI E.P. IS RELEASED!!

2012'S KISS-ME-QUICK E.P. IS FINALLY OUT!

Hello beasties!

A short post - and a little surprise to any interested! It's about a newly released recording that I made almost 4 years ago, but which is now available from Bandcamp... Here's some more information about it all...

This recording, THE KISS-ME-QUICK E.P., originally entitled the CAT-LIKE E.P., includes 12 tracks recorded for an unfinished album back in August and September 2012. I'm considering recording some more poems in the future - but when I do I wanted to start afresh, so thought I'd release this now as I think they are worth hearing in their own right. Each poem was recorded a number of times and my preferred takes are included here. Oh - and if you think 12 tracks is a little long for an E.P. then just remember -  my other two albums had over 30 tracks; each poem is only a minute or two, remember. So yeah, at 12 tracks this is just an E.P.  - and here are the titles of those 12 tracks, written between 2008 and 2012.

ASK NICELY
BECOMING MORE CAT-LIKE
GEOGRAPHY BE DAMNED
I'M FAR TOO IMPORTANT TO KNOW YOU
IS A TOAD'S TOOL A TOADSTOOL?
IS IT CHRISTMAS ALREADY?
KISS-ME-QUICK
LOVE-GO-ROUND
MISTER MOSQUITO
NEVER TRUST A SKINNY FISH AND CHIP MAN
PEACE OF MIND IN A TEA-BAG
THE UNAFFORDABLE FJORD

I am asking only £2 for these tracks - they can be downloaded from Bandcamp at the following link:

https://shyyeti.bandcamp.com/album/the-kiss-me-quick-e-p

Oh - and you can hear the title track for free if you click that link.

These poems come from the collections, THE SHY LIFE (2009), DO YETI WEAR PYJAMAS (2010), YETI HUGS AND OTHER HORRORS (2011), FUNERAL FOR A SHOE (2011) and ARE WE THERE YETI? (2012) and NOT AS SHY AS I WAS (2013) - the majority of them were also gathered together for 2012's SHY YETI STILL RULES O.K. compilation. Also these books remain available on www.lulu.com for anyone interested.

Here is a post I wrote when I was busy putting these tracks together: http://thedaffypoet.blogspot.co.uk/2012_09_02_archive.html

At one stage I had planned to put together a live album using sound recorded during my old Poetry Cafe shows, yet not suitable for videos due to picture quality or simply unused material from those shows; I may still do that or possibly record a new album of some sort as I travel about over the next few months. I'll get back to you...

Next time, I have some photos to share with you that I took to promote KENSINGTON GORE and A YETI WAY OF THINKING...

More soon!

Yeti hugs,

Paul xx

This post and all contents are copyright, Paul Chandler 2016.

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Wednesday, April 20, 2016

SHY YETI TAKES A WALK IN THE PARK...

SHY YETI CAUSES YET(I) MORE CHAOS!!

Hello beasties!!

This week we have for you another one of Shy Yeti's little sketches. This one concerns Shy trying to silence some rather noisy birds in Bushy Park - but the result is not quite what he had expected, as you can imagine!

The first draft of this post was written on Monday 4th April 2016 and was inspired by a walk I took in the Bushy Park and Hampton Court area on Saturday 2nd April 2016 - which is also when the photos used to illustrate this piece were taken. In addition, I slightly expanded the original draft when I returned to proof it between Monday 11th and Wednesday 13th April 2016.

Next week there will be two posts again - the first relates to KENSINGTON GORE and will contain a number of photos from my little photo-shoot on Wimbledon Common last month... The second post will be another new prose piece - this one a daft sketch concerning the naughtiness of cats...

Enjoy the new Shy Yeti sketch - more soon!

Yeti hugs,

Paul xx


P.S. Some background links to the parakeets in the UK, especially around London...

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kingston_parakeets

http://www.cbc.ca/news/world/feral-parakeets-spreading-across-uk-1.3439467

There are many more, including documentaries on Youtube. I saw my first parakeet in Richmond Park over a decade ago and since then they can be heard beyond the M25, where I live. It's an invasion, I tell you... Anyway, coming up is Shy Yeti's meeting with one of their kind.

P.P.S. Oh, and as Mr Yeti is about to remind the parakeet... There is a show coming up in July!

SHY YETI VERSUS THE PARAKEETS...

SETTING THE SCENE: Shy Yeti is a yeti on a mission - heading on through Bushy Park, near Hampton Court on a sunny Spring day intent on locating a certain bird... He's not usually one for the birds, Mr Yeti - but on this occasion it is his priority... This is no afternoon stroll; he knows where he is heading - to the very tree. Once he has located his destination he stands beneath the branches and looks upward...

SHY: (politely)

Hello!? Excuse me!? I don't know your name, but I am informed that you're the parakeet that I should come to should I want to make a complaint. (He pauses) Well, I do... Want to make a complaint, I mean... (Silence) Hello? HELLO!?! IS ANYBODY THERE!?

Almost as if by magic - a bright yellow parakeet appears on a branch at head level...

PARAKEET: (slightly disgruntled)

Alright pal, no need to shout... Cor, blimey! You didn't half make me jump - creeping around down there, like that? You're pretty nimble for a big guy... No offence meant, alright!? So, what's the problem? You lost your way or something? Hampton Court is back that way... I wouldn't go in the maze if I were you - you don't seem the type of fellow who's very good with directions - you'll be stuck in there all day...

SHY: (proudly)

Err... Yes... Well... I'll have you know I'm very good at directions... I once went to the Malvern Hills and had a walk, only to go back years later and I remembered it like it was only yesterday...

PARAKEET: (sarcastically at first and then slightly taunting)

Oh... Right... Super... Such a moving story... Sorry, let me just grab a tissue... 

SHY: (politely)

I always carry a spare in case you're in need...

PARAKEET: (sniffing and then doing just that)

I'm alright, mate... I'll just use me wing... It's what it's there for, isn't it? *sniff* Ahh! That's better...

SHY: (trying not to make a disapproving face)

I'm so glad! Well, let me introduce myself... I'm a poet and writer... A journalist on occasion... A former librarian... My name is Shy Yeti... You may have heard of me...

PARAKEET: (curious)

Nope, mate... Sorry! You a celebrity then?

SHY: (back-tracking slightly)

Well, I wouldn't say that...

PARAKEET: (apologetically)

I don't read the papers or watch the news - so I don't know who's who... The wife might recognise you - she loves a good limerick - especially if it's on a tea-towel or a pinney...

SHY: (managing not to wince)

Ah, yes... Most commendable...

PARAKEET: (chipping in)

So, if you're not lost - were you trying to sell tickets to your show or something? Because I don't think we'll be free that night...

SHY: (proudly)

Well, I will be appearing at the Poetry Cafe in early July... However...

PARAKEET: (beginning to be slightly impressed)

The Poetry Cafe, you say? So will you be getting a chauffeur-driven limousine to something like that?

SHY: (modestly)

I doubt it... I walk most places - or occasionally take the bus...

PARAKEET: (sympathetically/mocking)

Oh, that is a pity.. What has it come to when one of Surrey's greatest poets has to take public transport - even more shameful that you're having to have to walk everywhere... It's not something that I ever have to deal with, of course... I'm so famous, me - I'll always fly! Ha!

SHY: (teeth gritted)

Most amusing... I'm not really famous, though...

PARAKEET: (interrupting)

Me neither! Just a minute... I have a question... So, if you're sense of direction's okay - then how do you explain over-shooting Hampton Court? Did you get off the bus too soon or is it just a case of all that fur of yours getting in your face and not being able to see properly? It is kind of breezy today, I guess...

SHY: (beginning to lose his temper)

Listen... If you'll give me a chance to speak I was about to say that I'm not even lost...

PARAKEET: (not sounding like he believes Shy whatsoever)

Okay... If you say so... I'd get yourself a map though, just in case...

SHY: (really losing his cool now)

I HAVE a map! It's on my phone - and for that matter I can see perfectly well through my fur, thank you...

PARAKEET: (innocently)

Okay... Noted... So what ARE you here for? Shouting around the place and causing all that noise... Sounds like you need a doctor - your blood pressure must be sky high to be acting like that...

SHY: (spitting chips, metaphorically!)

The cheek of it! I'm actually here to discuss that very subject... But not my noisiness... YOURS!!! I've come to complain about all the squawking going on around here - this used to be a quiet neighbourhood - a peaceful park; I've lived in this area for many years...

PARAKEET: (sounding a trifle irritated himself now)

Oh really!? Is that a fact? You do know where you're standing, right? This is a public place! If you listen carefully there's a lot more going on than a few birdies tweeting... You've got deer chomping on ferns, mice snuffling, fish splashing, swans swanning, badgers badgering and irritating kids screaming... But what do you expect?! Nobody has broken any laws, have they?

SHY: (sounding grumpy)

I wouldn't mind, only you're not only in the parks - you're everywhere... In the gardens, hanging out at railway stations, down the doctor's surgery - there in the supermarket queue...

PARAKEET: (quite disappointed)

Hey! A bird's got to shop! You're very judgmental, you know...

SHY: (trying to sound reasonable)

Look, I'm not saying you shouldn't use the shops it's just why do you make such a noise about it!? It gives me quite a headache you know - and I know a number of other birds in the area who have completely upped sticks and moved North...

PARAKEET: (nonplussed)

That's none of my business... Anyway, I thought most birds flew South... I mean, my lot don't - but then we're a bit hardier than most and don't mind a touch of snow...

SHY: (antagonised)

They've gone up North - to the Lake District or even further up into Scotland... There have been rumours of bullying from the smaller birds... From the robins and sparrows and the thrush...

PARAKEET: (challenging)

What a load of nonsense... Blumin' mummies boys... Although robins are no push-overs - they just like you to think they are and then THWACK - they've given you a right hook that you never saw coming! But seriously... All this squabbling because of a bit of noise! Did you never make a sound, Mr Yeti? With YOUR big feet!! Come off it...

SHY: (trying not to sound too emotional)

I'll have you know that I'm very aware of the clamour that I have the potential of causing... I'm a yeti... I am large... As you so rightly say, I DO have BIG FEET,,, And yet do you hear me making a noise?!

PARAKEET: (teasing)

Perhaps a little... Just a tiny sound now and again!

SHY: (cross again)

Rubbish! Not at all! Admit it! First thing you said when I showed up was that I'd crept up on you... I'm very proud of my lack of crashiness, for want of a better word...

PARAKEET: (still taunting)

You could just have said noisiness again... You poet yeti are so hung-up on repetition of language...

SHY: (really beginning to lose it now)

It's just that it's something that really bothers me... The foot-print I leave on the earth - literally and non-literally! It's nothing to do with being a poet - it's about being a... me... a person... A member of the world's population... I don't say any of this lightly... Do you realise that I never whistle after 7pm in case I wake somebody? Did you know that? Well, I do! And I deliberately tip-toe everywhere just to ensure that I don't cause the ground to rumble... I wear special shoes that are kind to grass and daisies and don't allow them to be squashed? Do you? No... Sure, you're able to fly... But not all of us have that ability! I make that sacrifice - SO WHY  CAN'T YOU!?

PARAKEET: (snootily)

Alright! Alright! I hear you! Very charitable you are too! But this is your choice... It's not the way that everybody wants to live their lives... You think we should make a "sacrifice", do you? So, what's your solution? You want us to go home to where we belong, perhaps? I'm not saying you are, but you're beginning to sound a bit like one of those racists, Mr Yeti!? Because I think you should know that all of us were hatched here in this country... We belong here! We have nests in Buckingham Palace gardens so we are officially sanctioned by your royal highness The Queen, herself - long may she reign...

SHY: (outraged and upset at the accusation)

Listen! Stop that... I'm not saying any of that! PLEASE! No... You're putting words into my mouth now!

PARAKEET: (offended)

But you did just say something about us being "everywhere" these days? Well, didn't you?

SHY: (down-heartened)

When you say it like that it sounds kind of sinister and wrong... I didn't mean it like that! It's a geographical fact! To be fair you have spread your wings a little wider than - say - ten or fifteen years ago; but that's not bad thing... Except for the excess tweeting! What should we all do? Go around wearing earphones!? I'm not sure that's fair - what about people who can't afford earphones?

PARAKEET: (calming down)

Hmm... Well, we'll come back to that in a minute! Still, I accept your explanation - and your apology... You did apologise, didn't you? 

SHY: (sounding a little worn down)

For upsetting you, yes... But all I said was that you parakeet people do make quite a lot of noise... Prove me wrong! To be honest, I'm happy for that noise to go on pretty much anywhere - but there is currently a lot of activity out in my back garden during the day...

PARAKEET: (sounding awfully innocent)

But isn't that what gardens are for, during the day? For chirping in...

SHY: (gritting his teeth slightly)

I'm sure - only I'm working in the evenings right at the moment and napping in the day; only I'm not able to...

PARAKEET: (attempting to wind him up again)

Well, I'm very sorry to hear that... So, what? You think I could do something about all this? Is this another of the sacrifices that you think we ought to be making? Are you talking to any other families of birds about the noises that they are making? (becoming a little more serious in tone) Are you having a quick word with any mice or voles or bunnies or badgers or earth-worms that may also be passing? Well, are you?

SHY: (candidly)

I have to be honest with you - no other birds or beasts in the area here make the kind of racket that you lot do... It's a gorgeous racket, definitely - just not whilst I'm sleeping!

PARAKEET: (dragging it out)

What about the foxes? They can be terribly rowdy if they knock back too many Babyshams...

SHY: (trying to calm down)

You're right - the foxes next door do like to party - but mostly at night... But I did complain and one of them showed up with a lovely card - not to mention a large bottle of JD and a gorgeous bouquet of flowers...

PARAKEET: (snidely)

Which they probably nicked from a graveyard...

SHY: (protectively)

Hey! Now who's been unfair and stereotyping people...

PARAKEET: (apologetically)

Alright! Alright! I'm sorry... It was just a bit of fun... Look, I dunno, fella - I'm not sure about this... If you want me to do something then I think you need to do something for me!

SHY: (flagging fast)

Oh goodness... I'm so tired I will literally agree to anything, right now...

PARAKEET: (lowering his voice)

We need help... We're down a player... Connie can't make it tonight...

SHY: (confused)

Connie? Who's Connie? She's a player? Oh, that sounds wrong... Unless...

PARAKEET: (continuing, patiently)

No, mate! Let me explain! Connie is one of our Bridge team... She's seeing this new musical...

SHY: (ponderous)

Oh! I wonder if it's the one I wrote...

PARAKEET: (momentarily curious)

You write musicals?

SHY: (with sadness)

I write them - they don't often get performed, mind...

PARAKEET: (chuckling)

This one sounds a little blue - it's called Knockers or something...

SHY: (mutters to self)

It wasn't called that when I actually wrote it...

PARAKEET: (brightening)

You should write one about us, fella...

SHY: (impatiently)

Yes, indeed! Perhaps I will! So what was this favour of yours, you wanted me to do? Something about Connie... She can't make the Bridge night? So you'd like me to step into her shoes?

PARAKEET: (correcting him)

Her clogs - she wears clogs... You might just squeeze into them... But yes... That WOULD be very kind of you...

SHY: (hopeful)

My pleasure! ...And then maybe, after I've done that, you'll ask some of your chums not to chirp quite so loudly outside my window of a morning...

PARAKEET: (pally)

Of course... I'll certainly do my best! I'm Gordon, by the way... I do hope you know how to play Bridge...

Shy looks a little unsure... Time passes... We see a number of parakeets around a table playing cards - one of the birds looks a little different from the rest - it is Shy Yeti, of course, dressed as a parakeet and wearing a pair of clogs that are far too small for him... He is playing cards and making occasional cheeping noises, whilst reluctantly picking at a plate of seed.

SHY: (randomly, uncertainly)

MEEP! MEEP! CLUCK! MEEP!

OTHER PARAKEET: (apparently oblivious that Connie isn't her usual self)

What's she going on about? Connie? What are you on tonight? She's been knocking back the Earl Grey's a bit too quickly, I think.

GORDON: (nods to friend, then whispers to Shy)

Yes... Yes! I wouldn't be surprised! (turns) Oi! Yeti... Careful what you say! You do realise that you're telling everybody that you're cheap? At this rate, you're going to get a lot of requests by the end of the evening... Hey! Perhaps that's what you were hoping for... Hey!? HEY!

SHY: (sighing)

CHIRP! CHIRP! CHIRP! How am I doing now?

GORDON: (chuckling)

Bit better... Room for improvement, mind... Your Bridge, on the other hand, is boarder-line atrocious, but still better than anybody else in the other team... Keep up the... err... "good" work, mate.

SHY: (excitedly, his eyes opening wide for a moment)

Cheers... Oooh look! SNAP! SNAP! I've got a FULL HOUSE!? Is that it? No... YAHTZEE!?!

The rest of the table looks unsure, but Gordon applauds and pats Shy Yeti on the back and a new hand is dealt... Poor Mr Yeti mutters under his breath - he is clearly half-asleep and in danger of falling off the branch and yet he soldiers on... What a yeti trooper... Let's hope that those sneaky parakeets keep up their side of the bargain!! I wouldn't bet on it, mind!

This post and all contents are Copyright Paul Chandler, 2016.

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