Wednesday, 12 March 2008

Bono is a Colm and Jim Jim Fan!

Who are Colm and Jim Jim you may well ask. Well, they are the guys who do the 2FM Breakfast Show in Dublin. Our Bono listens to them during the school run and on Tuesday morning - obviously as Bono was driving the kids to school - he heard them talking about a statement from Clannad (who are embarking on a tour) that he can no longer hit the high notes he reached on their hit "In A Lifetime" and they would be using someone else.

Incensed, our Bono phoned the show and put them right.

Okay, he wasn't incensed. He obviously just wanted a laugh!

Hear it here - it's really funny. Our B even does some of the show's jingles, proving that this show must really be a favourite of his.

Friday, 7 March 2008

(De) Bono's Thinking Hat?

After writing my Blog last night, and also after looking back at some pictures of our Bono at Hanover Quay recently, I noticed that he has been wearing a green hat a lot lately. Of course he has worn many hats over the years, but this one seems to be his favourite right now, while he is recording the album. It got me thinking about a theory of Edward do Bono's that I read about a few years ago. De Bono is famous for his lateral thinking, and has this to say about the wearing of different colour hats. Read into it what you will. I'm just quoting it here for fun.

The White Hat calls for information known or needed. "The facts, just the facts."

The Yellow Hat symbolises brightness and optimism. Under this hat you explore the positives and probe for value and benefit.

The Black Hat is judgment - the devil's advocate or why something may not work. Spot the difficulties and dangers; where things might go wrong. Probably the most powerful and useful of the Hats but a problem if over-used.

The Red Hat signifies feelings, hunches and intuition. When using this hat you can express emotions and feelings and share fears, likes, dislikes, loves, and hates.

The Green Hat focuses on creativity; the possibilities,alternatives, and new ideas. It's an opportunity to express new concepts and new perceptions.

The Blue Hat is used to manage the thinking process. It's the control mechanism that ensures the Six Thinking Hats® guidelines are observed

Since Bono seems to be wearing a green hat a lot during the creative process of the new album, maybe he thinks there is something in it. Here is more about the "Green Hat".

Green Hat Think of vegetation and rich growth

The green hat is for creative thinking.
The green hat is for new ideas.
The green hat is for additional alternatives.
The green hat is for putting forward possibilities and hypotheses.
The green hat covers provocation and movement.
The green hat requests creative effort.
We need some new ideas here.
Are there any additional alternatives?
Could we do this a different way?
Could there be another explanation?

The green hat makes it possible to ask directly for a creative effort. The green hat makes time and space available for creative thinking. Even if no creative ideas are forthcoming, the green hat asks for the creative effort.

Mmmm... interesting.

Thursday, 6 March 2008

When Mr B met Mr B!

On Tuesday my good friend Alan, aka Boner from the Scottish tribute band NU2, was in Dublin and since U2 are in the studio at Hanover Quay, he decided to go down and chance his arm. I gave him the benefit of my (not too extensive) wisdom and experience (ahem), and it paid off because he finally got to meet Bono!!! I was in touch with him via text message throughout it all and I was so excited it was like I was there myself! Afterwards, Alan phoned me and gave me a brief synopsis of the meeting but, as I know from experience, it is hard to remember a meeting with Bono in full until a little while later, when your stupid grin has faded a bit and your excitement has settled. Tonight, I got an email and this is what happened, in Boner's own words:

After walking from Grafton St for what seemed like hours (and crossing the Liffy without realising) I eventually reached HQ.

I was struck by the contrast between the swanky restaurants and chic buildings at the Quay and U2's somewhat dilapidated studios. However this did make me chuckle at U2's defiance of Dublin City Council. Who runs Dublin anyway? Bono does!

When I arrived at about 1.30pm there was a group of 5 girls - one from Brazil or Argentina - not quite sure, 2 from France, a Dutch girl now living in Dublin, oh yes and a Polish girl with her maw! Is that 5?

I sought some reassurance that something U2-like was gonna happen but they seemed not in the know and when I mentioned the thing about the garage door and the posts they looked at me like I had horns.

It then became quite boring with only the constant stream of workmen retunring from lunch with their builder bums saluting me as they passed.

After about an hour and 10mins the garage door went up and a bloke with a big mouser came out and looked up the street. (Deb's Note: I just realised that a "mouser" is a moustache and that Boner is talking here about Sammy O'Sullivan, U2's famous mouser sporter!) Two minutes later the Edge arrived in his car and drove straight in. The door went down but 5 mins later went up again. Bono drove up the street in what I think was a big Merc and drove in. Door down again.

Debbi texted me to say Bono would come out in 10-ish mins and lo and behold the Exit door opened and he strolled out smiling and rubbing his hands. Three Irish guys had arrived about ten minutes earlier with CDs, books and birthday cards to sign. All I had was a crappy O'Callaghan Hotels map. I stood back a bit and let the foreign girls talk to Bono first as they had been waiting hours before me. One girl asked Bono to phone her sister but he declined saying "I'd rather not do the phone thing".

The Polish girl introduced her mother and Bono smiled a yelled "MAW" and kissed her hand. Class!

He asked where everyone was from. He was genuinely interested in why they were all in Dublin. The Dutch girl said she was working in Dublin, Bono said "It's always good to work in Dublin" I said "I'm being paid as we speak" and he grinned at me.

The South American girl was seriously overwhelmed and was almost moaning and trying to get him to read this long note she had with her.

The Dutch girl said can you get Adam to come out. Bono said "I have never had any control over what Adam does."

The Irish guys produced more stuff, a flyer for Bonovox amongst other things and Bono laughed out loud.

More photos followed and I thought I better make my move as he was making noises to go.

I muscled in and said Bono - a photo please. "Sure" He put his arm round me (crikey). I gave my phone to the Polish girl and started chatting to him. He was standing on a step and I was at ground level, he crouched down a wee bit

"I am in a U2 tribute band from Scotland y'know"

"Really, that's great" said Bono

"You know who I am?...YOU!!" I said

Bono turned his head and looked me up and down, smiled then looked me in the eye but did not speak. His look basically said "Seriously??"

I then looked at the Polish girl who had my phone round the wrong way and was about to take a photo of herself. I said no no, turn it round.

Bono said "I'm gonna give ya a peace sign" and she took the pic.

He then said "I gotta run now" shook my outstretched hand and turned round and went back in.


And here is the money shot! Boner and Bono... united at last!!!

Wednesday, 5 March 2008

We Had A Ticket To Ride!

And we used it on the train to get to Liverpool today! Keith and I had planned to go during our week off work, but were unsure which day to go. I am sad to say that we picked the worst day weather-wise, because up until today, every day has been beautifully sunny and, though cold, very pleasant. But of course the moment we started out today, the sun decided not to come out, and it was freezing!!!

Still, it was a nice day, despite that. Even though Albert Dock must have been the windiest place in the whole world today!!!

After a stilted start (our train from Crew to Liverpool was cancelled due to some signalling problems at Winsford!) we finally got to Liverpool via Chester and spent some time walking about Albert Dock. We paid a visit to Tate Liverpool to look at some art. Well, they call it art but most of it is just madness. Don't get me wrong, some of it was great and I can actually see the point of some of it. Jackson Pollock definitely had something and daft as it sounds, there is a technique to splashing paint onto a canvas. I can see that. But some of the art there today I could have done myself! A canvas simply painted all one colour and then put in a frame is just taking the piss in my opinion.

But it passed an hour or so and at least we were out of the cold!

After that we went to see "The Beatles Story", which was a fab (no pun intended) look at the lives and careers of Liverpool's famous sons. We got a headset and digital radio thing, and just had to press numbers into it as we walked around all the exhibits. It was a fascinating display, which included mock-ups of a few of the places The Beatles had played, including, of course, The Cavern, and also a replica of Abbey Road Studios.

After the tour was over, it was getting late, so we went to a nearby pub on the docks, and had something to eat, along with a glass of wine. It was nice to sit and reflect on the day. Then it was time to head back for the train after this whirlwind trip. We had planned to take a cruise on the Mersey Ferry, but it was simply too cold and windy for us to even contemplate that.

Still, it was a lovely day though. As we walked back to the station, we walked past the site of the original Cavern on Mathew Street

If the weather had been better, we would have been able to do more and, I am sure, we would have enjoyed it a lot more. But it was a nice day out!

Tuesday, 4 March 2008

Oh Bono, Where Art Thou?

I stumbled across this hilarious (and very useful I imagine!) Google Map search thing called The Bono Probability Positioning System where you can look at a map of Dublin and it tells you the probability of finding Bono in any number of locations (just click on the Bono cartoon faces). Apparently (ahem), it uses Dublin's CCTV network, and facial recognition technology to determine whether the be-shaded one is in the vicinity. So all you need is a laptop and a fast car and you are all set!