sprezzatura: (Smoke & Mirrors)
Bleurgh, November. Possibly my least favourite month, because at least in February the days are getting longer and you know spring isn't far away. November, however, has very little to recommend it. Summer is a distant memory, the clocks have gone back, it's not Hallowe'en any more and the festering season looms large in front of you like a big, black, fierce animal ready to guzzle up all your money/time/enthusiasm for life. November Spawned a Monster, said Morrissey, and he was bloody well right, I call it Christmas.*

Ed and I had a lovely time in Whitby, for the most part, although Saturday was a bit stressful, and I think we missed out by not being there during the day on Friday. Mostly because of the weekend crowds, I only went to the market for about five minutes, and if I hadn't have needed to collect a pre-ordered item from [livejournal.com profile] needler I might not have bothered to do even that. We didn't set foot in the Elsinore at all. The problem with only living an hour's drive away is that we always seem to end up being part-timers, even if we have accommodation in Whitby itself. Next time we will be more organised and make sure Ed gets time off work.

We spent Friday night at Wasteland in Raw, which I really enjoyed, but it was a shame it had to finish so early. Saturday was DV8 at Laughton's, the first time I had ever been there for something other than the 80s night, and as [livejournal.com profile] rainbowskye observed, the absence of skipping ropes, conga lines and Nelly the Elephant took some getting used to. Band wise, I loved Grooving in Green and the March Violets, quite liked Glass and Ulterior and did not enjoy Black Moth at all, which was a shame because they had the best T-shirts. I believe O Children played as well, and I would have liked to have seen them but we ran out of energy during the Violets' set and had to go home to bed. Sunday was my favourite night, spent, apart from a quick drink in Laughton's to say hello to [livejournal.com profile] broom_stick, [livejournal.com profile] thedemoncrowley and others, at Nostalgia, which is probably the best club night I have been to since the 1990s.

The weekend also included dinner at Casa Nostra with [livejournal.com profile] miss_dark and [livejournal.com profile] dedbutdrmng, and - randomly - Kate-who-I-used-to-go-to-school-with and her husband, because the world is the size of a pin cushion. There was a predictable trip to the Fisherman's Friend with various Usual Suspects before I left on Monday, though remarkably I did not have any cake.

As I have now been home for almost forty-eight hours, I think it's probably time I unpacked the car.


*Though these days, the retail industry seems to think August Spawned a Monster.
sprezzatura: (DH Poster Snape)
It is the last day of Save Livejournal Month! Apart from one day when I forgot, and had to catch up the next morning, I have managed to post something every day, and I must admit, it's nice to be back and I will try to keep up with more regular updates. I will be starting with a long, rambling discourse about Whitby that might even turn into a WIG thread, just like in the old days, but as I am heading back there as soon as we've dropped off K at her Hallowe'en Party, it will have to wait a day or two.

Happy Pumpkin Day, viewers!
sprezzatura: (Default)
In Whitby and in deep disgruntlement. Way too many people and way too many cameras. It's very difficult to talk about how much better WGW was in the old days without sounding sneery and pretentious, but WGW was much better in the old days before it became a fancy dress photo opportunity.
sprezzatura: (80s!)
Coming soon! Self-indulgent Goth angst, especially for [livejournal.com profile] neenaw. I don't have time now though. I've got to take Tia to Doggy Holiday Camp before Ed gets home and then we're going back to Whitby.

Yesterday was busy and fun. I met up with [livejournal.com profile] broom_stick, [livejournal.com profile] sobrique and others and we caught a steam train - disappointingly not the Hogwarts Express - to Pickering. We went to look at the church with uncovered medieval murals on the walls, which I had not seen before. [livejournal.com profile] speedygoth joined us for lunch and I got a lift back to Whitby with her in the hope of picking up the flat key before [livejournal.com profile] foxy76 arrived, but I was thwarted by the miserable old bags in the letting agency so went to get supplies instead. Clare arrived while I was at the Co-op, so we went to find the flat, which is warm and comfortable and on the top floor of one of the Whitehall Landings buildings. It has a great view of the Abbey which looked fantastic floodlit in purple.

A quick dinner and tarting up later, we went to [livejournal.com profile] broom_stick's 50s cocktail party where I consumed inadvisable quantities of Planter's Punch and caught up with various people including [livejournal.com profile] rhubarbtriangle and [livejournal.com profile] salmon_of_doubt whom I hadn't seen in I can't remember how long.

Some photos )
sprezzatura: (Me 50s)
At 50s cocktail party. Have not drunk alcohol in 3 months. Pissed. Mr Rochester wrist fisting!
sprezzatura: (Bellatrix)
So, yes, I'm off to Whitby in the morning. I believe there is some sort of music festival, but I'm just going to have a quiet few days away with Ed and [livejournal.com profile] foxy76, celebrate Hallowe'en, and hopefully catch up with a few people I went to university with who have Livejournals they never update.

I just wrote a long post pontificating on the subject of WGW; about all the people I've fallen out with or woken up beside, whose shoulders I've cried on and who've been sick on my shoes, and the ghosts of eleven years that lie around the town like cracks in the pavement waiting for a misplaced stiletto to trip me up. Then I decided I couldn't be doing with any of that self-indulgent Goth nonsense and deleted it. I'll just have to make sure I stick to wearing DMs all weekend, won't I?
sprezzatura: (Duckface)
Options for Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights brutally pillaged from [livejournal.com profile] asw909's events list. Options for other things to do lazily lifted from 2003.

Oops, forgot the cut tag )

Whitby.

Apr. 30th, 2008 10:40 am
sprezzatura: (Default)
Ugh. This is the worst case of Post Whitby Disorder I have had in a long time. It was a curious weekend, managing to recall the Spirit of Whitby Past while remaining relatively grown-up and civilised. It seems to have renewed a lot of people's enthusiasm - mine included - for the weekend in general and in particular for the "official" part in the Spa. I loved being able to get a ticket just for one night and I hope this is something Top Mum will continue to offer in the future.

Other highlights included: )

I'm not going to post a corresponding list of lowlights, because there weren't really any that affected me personally and I had a wonderful time, but one situation in particular did cast a shadow over an otherwise relaxed and drama-free weekend. Quite rightly, what with the dedication of the bench and the impending sentencing of her killers, Sophie Lancaster was a name that kept coming up over the weekend. Like several of our friends, Ed and I bought wristbands in support of the S.O.P.H.I.E (Stamp Out Prejudice, Hatred and Intolerance Everywhere) campaign, which is a message I know is close to many people's hearts and one which most of Whitby and the goth community in general seems to have got right behind. In the light of this I find it particularly depressing to discover homophobia and bigotry alive and well in Whitby, not from outsiders (with the exception of the ones who accosted [livejournal.com profile] jozafeen) but from amongst the goths themselves.

I mentioned that our flat had been a refuge for assorted couch surfers, and these included the now-legendary Homeless Lesbians of Sunday Night. Many of you will know who I am talking about and the ladies in question are welcome to identify themselves if they wish, but I would like to stress that the view of events I am posting here is entirely my own and although I checked first with them whether they minded me mentioning it, neither they, nor anyone else has in any way encouraged me to do so or attempted to influence what I am about to say. In other words, if anyone is going to lose friends over this, let it be me and not them - they have been through enough. This may not be my fight as such, but frankly, I'm not sure I want anyone who would defend or excuse such prejudice as a friend, so I make no apologies for taking up the cause.

A good friend of mine approached me in the run up to the weekend in search of emergency accommodation after the 80s night, as she and her partner were unwelcome as a couple in the cottage in which she was due to stay for the first few nights of the event before her girlfriend arrived in Whitby on Sunday. One of their party apparently objected to their sharing a room on religious grounds. This seemed to be rather a hypocritical and inconsistent standpoint given other sharing arrangements within the cottage but I don't know the full story so I won't speculate further. Having run it by my flatmates, we were able to offer them a bit of floor (which turned into a bed when [livejournal.com profile] gothgrr arranged to stay with [livejournal.com profile] foxy76 for the night) for Sunday and they booked into a B&B for Monday. They dropped off their things while we were at [livejournal.com profile] cookwitch's, and we arranged to see them in Laughtons.

Not long after we arrived, we were told by a mutual friend that when the second half of the couple turned up at the original cottage that afternoon, the ladies were asked to stop being affectionate or leave. Obviously we were all pretty shocked by this, especially when it was confirmed by the couple themselves who told me that the exact words used had been "If you're going to do that, get out!" Understandably they found this rather upsetting. I don't know if anyone else was there, but if so I must admit I am surprised that no-one stood up for them. Due to various other events of the late afternoon and early evening I was on a hair-trigger, and perhaps my reaction at the time was not as mature as it would have been if I had been sober, but I am one hundred percent ready to defend the spirit of my actions nonetheless. I am very glad to say that the couple had the universal support of everyone who heard about what had happened, and glad that they were able to enjoy the evening in the same way as the rest of us - having a drink and dancing together without interference.

They talked a little more about the situation when we got back to the flat, and I believe the word "squick" was mentioned, which brings me to the crux of my argument. I am sick to death of people using their religious views to justify narrow mindedness and bigotry. I am not, and never have been a believer myself but over the years it has been my privilege to know a number of Christians who have been open-minded, thoughtful and tolerant, both within the Goth community and beyond. Knee-jerk homophobia and medieval attitudes from certain individuals are giving them a bad name. If you have a problem with something, have the cajones to admit it and stop using your faith as an excuse. I find it both disappointing and depressing that on a weekend where tolerance for "alternative" lifestyles was in the forefront of everyone's minds that there were people prepared to support such pathetic and outmoded prejudice.

Anonymous comments enabled purely to offer right of reply to those involved who do not have LJs. Unsigned or irrelevant comments will be deleted.

*Gin + cherry brandy + lemonade. I have no idea how to make a proper Singapore Sling.
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