Weeknote 0005

  • I now have an NHS dentist that works Saturdays! Never had much luck with dental administration, either finding them available or them honouring my appointments, so being able to go on a weekend appointment feels like a special thing.
  • Therefore, I went for an inspection in the dentists’ chair. My most problematic tooth is long gone: pulled out at Guy’s Hospital during the first lockdown, pre-vaccines, while it was impossible for dentists to drill anything. Probably saved me a fortune overall. Of the remainder, one needs filling and another needs its filling amended. Curiously, the couple of temporary lockdown fillings are fine and may as well stay as they are. So going back in a couple of Saturdays to get that done.
  • Had a steady week of proposal-writing and research. Some nice chunky challenges with opportunities to make a substantial difference. Nothing at all wrong with that.
  • It was Groundhog Day. So I watched Groundhog Day. The comfort of repetition.
  • Reconnected with an old friend who, when his wife asked who he was messaging, told her I was the first person he knew in real life who had a blog. A dubious honour.

Bass notes

[In which Mo learns bass guitar]

  • Suddenly much harder this week. My subconscious has decided the lower notes are up and to the left; higher notes down and to the right. That’s broadly true until you come to play something: for efficiency, your right hand is also moving up and down between the higher and strings. So a lower note on a string further up might be to the left of a higher note on a string further down. Which is both obvious and counterintuative.
  • This all became apparent trying to play the bass part from Billie Jean; the work of the legendary Louis Johnson and possibly the most famous thing you can play on a bass guitar. But it’s the fretboard equivalent of a tongue-twister: I know all the notes and strings but it comes apart when I play them in order. A couple of thousand more repetitions will hopefully break my subconsious. The recording of Billie Jean was famously labourious, so it seems fitting.