This morning developed into one of those amazing September afternoons that lull you into the hope that there's an Indian Summer on the way. Even the dodgy side of Stevenson Square looked half way attractive in the evening sunlight.
Note the cranes in the background. They're the architectural and emotional equivalent of plastic surgery : passed its teenage years of unbridled growth, furious energy and rage and after the midlife crisis of the IRA bomb, Manchester is slipping into a comfortable and superficially prosperous prime with the aid of a little help from the developers/surgeons.
I had to stay late in the office to finish up and had the place to myself - so I got to listen to Antony and the Johnsons as the sun went down. Antony has been nominated for the Mercury Prize - to be announced tonight - for his album 'I am a bird now'. How can it not win?
It's one of my favourite albums of the year so far and is on all my work computers, my mp3 player and I've even bought it for friends. That's right, bought it not burned it. I am going soft.
A&J were sold out in Manchester - even begging didn't help me get a freebie - so I went to Glasgow to see them with the lovely Laura. Fantastic gig. Brilliant crowd. Totally worth the trauma of flying via Edinburgh (I did get to go on the Make Poverty History march too) and then training over to Glasgow - I may have to go back to see them again as Manchester doesn't seem to be on the Autumn tour list...
The whole album has made me question some fundamental positons that I have held and thoughts that I've had on gender and sexuality - and enabled me to understand myself a lot better too. Still, I'd better not get into the therablog habit - other people do it better and I'm essentially too shallow to benefit from such an exercise...