Voices, Faces, Getting Old & a WIPpet

I debated whether to write this blog post. I’m alway so late to the party when it comes to anything new, that there’s never any point trying to share something I discovered and loved. Inevitably, when I do everyone around me is all: ‘yes Celine, we’ve all known about this for months and we all love it. Have you been hiding under a rock all this time?’

The answer is generally that yes, yes I have.

So fair warning, you’re probably already going to know about this, but I’m ploughing on ahead anyway, since this is my blog and it has to be as uncool as I am.

You know how sometimes you speak to someone on the phone, say, and your mental image of them is entirely at odds with their face when you finally meet them? I had a major case of this the other day when I discovered a singer called George Ezra (the cool ones among you are welcome to roll your eyes if you’ve known about him since before he started playing music).

If you haven’t heard of him, do me a favour and listen to the first few beats of this song. Not much point listening to more than that since the music video is below (and it’s really funny so you’ll want to watch the whole thing).

You have a mental image right? Mine was a middle aged, overweight Jamaican man with a beard and a hat (I think it’s voice that sounds like it passes through a hefty amount of facial hair). Here’s the actual music video, including George Ezra. You’ll recognise the other man as the fabulous Ian McKellen (he’s how I got to the music video in the first place). Make sure you watch the whole thing, there’s a really amusing bit about two thirds of the way in.

Isn’t it a lovely video and song? It never fails to make me smile – especially when McKellen glances at the camera to add ‘McKellen’ when Ezra is having a go at him. I laugh. Every time. That cheeky glance gives me such delight that I’ve watched the video far more times than I care to admit to.

It occurs to me that this might be a sign that I’m getting old. No, not because I have early onset alzheimer’s and keep forgetting that I’ve already watched the video (thanks for the vote of confidence there guys), but rather because I have more interest in the fabulous McKellen than in the pretty blond with the dreamy voice sharing the screen with him.

Worse, when I recounted this to the Husb, I used the phrase ‘pretty young thing’ (to refer to Ezra, you understand. Even in my adulation of McKellen I wouldn’t go as far as to call him a pretty young thing). I’m literally a bad leopard print top away from being a cougar. Let’s face it, no one who uses the words ‘pretty young things’ is any of those words.

No, it’s safe to say that once you’ve started using the phrase ‘pretty young thing’, you’re past it. There is no way around it.

Thirty beckons.

Le sigh.

Time being as ineluctable as my ageing, it is Wednesday (again! I have a feeling I’ll be thinking that every week) so time for a snippet. I didn’t get around to visiting everyone last week, we had a guest in town, so I had less time for blogging than usual. I will do this week though! This week you get 22 paragraphs, because 10+12.

I’m introducing you to the other main character of the story, Rory. Last week’s WIPpet was just a random bit of dialogue as I was in a rush to get the post done to get things ready for guest arrival, but today you get to meet her for proper.

Rory congratulated herself on her timing. She and Jake had just reached the end of the lane and, peering around the corner, she could see the mark a few yards away. He was a trader with a swollen belly and a self-satisfied air. She could already tell how pleased with himself he would look when he stepped in to save the poor, scrawny urchin girl from a beating.

Moron.

She counted down silently, with her fingers. Three, two, one.

Rory launched herself into the trader’s path with a shriek. Startled, the man jumped back just as Jake burst into the street, his face contorted into a perfectly fearsome mask. He grabbed Rory with his paddle sized hands, lifting her off the ground.

“Help!” she screamed, kicking her legs in the air, careful to miss Jake.

Jake drew back a meaty hand as though to strike her. She screeched again, waiting for the mark to react. Any moment now, he would step forward, his face a sneer, his rapier drawn and he would tell Jake to ‘let the girl go’.

Jake snarled, and raised his hand further behind him. Rory cowered in his grasp.

“Please not again, please no, please…” she gabbled.

The target stood aside, gawking, as though seagulls had pecked out his brains.

“Teach you to try and run away,” Jake grunted.

Still nothing.

Shit.

Rory had picked a dud.

Nothing for it, Jake was going to have to follow through and hit her or the game would be up.

Jake’s hand came down in a wide arc, just catching her cheek. Rory let her head snap to one side, howling out to make it seem more painful than it was. Still the merchant stood watching. She cursed under her breath. If he was going to be cowardly, the least he could do was leave and be cowardly somewhere else so they could end this charade.

Jake raised his hand again.

“Not so fast now.”

At last, the melodious sound of a rapier being pulled out of its scabbard. The trader pointed his blade at Jake.

“Put the girl down.”

“Not your godsdammned business,” Jake grunted.

“I’ve just made it my business. Put her down.”

Jake glowered ever so convincingly at the man, and let Rory drop to the ground. She made a show of collapsing onto the cobblestones, before scrambling up towards the trader.

Hope you enjoyed it!

If you want to take part, we all share snippets of our work every Wednesday, with the amount shared somehow related to the date (this is known as WIPpet maths. It’s far more fun than real maths). You can see who else is playing here, and as always thanks to K.L. Schwengel for hosting!

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40 thoughts on “Voices, Faces, Getting Old & a WIPpet

  1. I was surprised too when I saw what Ezra actually looked like! I didn’t know until I saw that video you tweeted to me. I only knew I liked the song Budapest. I wasn’t expecting him to look like that at all. 🙂

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  2. Dearest Sweet Young Thing – no, not Ezra, I’m talking to YOU in the leopard print top – you’re barely half my age!! Ok I have nothing to say of wisdom or wit !! I guarantee you’ll look back some day and think “oh, 30 was SO YOUNG” !!!

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    • Oh I have no doubt, just as I look back on my early twenties and think that. It’s just that now Thirty feels so Grown Up and I definitely don’t feel grown up enough to be thirty! I’ll have to change my grown up age at 35, push the grown up age back every five years so I never reach it 😉

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  3. nice! Definitely an insight to Rory and what’s going on, kind of. Still wondering what’s going on in general lol. I love scenes where one character manipulates another. That probably makes me weird, but whatev!

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  4. I’m laughing so hard at your “thirty beckons” comment. I’m being summoned by 40! And for the first time ever, I didn’t get carded in the liquor store yesterday. I was so sad.

    Great snippet. Took long enough for their sham to work! I can’t decide if I feel sorry for them or not.

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      • I don’t know how it is in other places, but around here, they’re supposed to card if you look under 30. I don’t think I’m that youthful, but the guy looked barely legal himself, and I was with my 9yo daughter. Guess he figured there was no way she could be my kid if I was underage.

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      • Oh wow, they card late! I think in the UK they card you if you look under 21….So yeah, it’s been a while for me 😉 and out in Hong Kong I’m not sure they card anyone! lol

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  5. Yes, I was surprised what he looked like after hearing his voice. It’s very deep and kind of scratchy; I was picturing someone older.

    Your WIPpet has me wondering what sort of mischief these two are up to. 🙂

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    • I agree, Sir Ian is the star in that video. But then the man is a genius and can do no wrong. If you love him by the way you should check out Vicious, if you haven’t yet. Hilarious comedy show with him and Derek Jacobi, harking back to cozy 70s British comedy. He’s priceless in it.

      I have high hopes for 30 – for starters, hopefully I’ll be publishing a point by then! 😉

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  6. I actually had just looked up Ezra before I read your blog and he looks so much different to how I pictured him. I was seeing dark hair, tall, scratchy beard, hipster vibe. 😛 I really enjoyed the snippet too, especially Rory’s change from overconfident to uncertain.

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  7. Thirty. *snork* Oh, you pretty young thing. That video is hysterical and reminds me of one Paul Simon and Chevy Chase did some…um…a few years ago. Possibly almost 30.

    *clears throat*

    Moving on. Excellent WIPpet. I *love* this. Truly. It’s my type of tale. I loved the tension building when they thought their mark wasn’t going to react. I still think things may not go exactly as they planned, however.

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    • Oh I’m going to have to check that video out! And I’m so taking being called a pretty young thing and running with it. Then that means I can continue not acting adult like 😉

      And thank you, I’m so glad you enjoyed the snippet!

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  8. That video made me smile, laugh out loud, and add both to check out further later. Both are new to me, and I shall check them out! Lovely song. Lovely interactions between the two. What gave me pause was your comment about Ezra being a ‘sweet, young thing’. Ha! YOU are the sweet, young thing . . . glad you are writing, making connections, sharing music and reflections. May you never grow up! Now to the Snippet: I loved the interaction, the focus on the kid who’s getting hit (even if it is a scam), the tension, the drama, the excitement of what comes next. Oh, turn that page. Oops. Can’t. 🙂

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  9. Here’s what Kathi was thinking of…and I know because my mid went straight to it, too.

    The year was 1986. I had just become a near rabid Paul Simon fan (which has never changed since!), through Eden Mabee and her mix tapes.

    We were in our last year of high school….and I didn’t know what either of these guys looked like, the first time I saw the video… once I did get the joke, it was hysterical!

    So, if you do the math, I’m 45. Most of the time, I still don’t feel like a grown-up, and I am very OK with that!

    George really doesn’t look like his voice! And Sir Ian….he’s just lovely!

    As for the snippet – beautifully done! I love the scorn Rory hold for the mark, and how it turns to tension as she realizes they’re going to have to follow through….I didn’t make it to you last week, so this was how I got to meet both Rory and Jake. Very curious to see what’s next!

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    • Yes that video is awesome! I looked it up after Kathi mentioned it. I didn’t get it at first, I had to look the joke up at first 😉 (didn’t realise that wasn’t Chevy Chase singing – but agree it’s hysterical!)

      Oh thank you re the snippet, so glad you enjoyed it! I’ve been way behind on the WIPpet front, both on the commenting and posting but I’ll get around to your blog today to see what you’ve been writing 🙂

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      • I’ve now seen Paul Simon in concert three times, so now it’s even funnier, but I really didn’t get it the first time I saw it, either (when it was new). I especially love the part where Chevy blows the trumpet in Paul’s ear, and when Paul is twiddling his thumbs and looking put-upon. It might be less funny if Pual weren’t so much smaller, or if he minded teasing himself a bit for his size…

        I’ve managed to post every week, but, with the mad rush of NaNo, and now trying to finish two novels before the end of the year, I haven’t done nearly as well at commenting.

        Eventually, I’ll get caught up…

        And, in case you haven’t made it there yet, I’m still playing with Trip and T’Pol (and, on Saturdays, with Spock, much of the time…).

        May the rest f your year be aglow with wonder!

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  10. *snork, snickle, giggle* I love the almost-failed charade. Wonderful! 🙂

    (And yeah. Who you calling old there, sister!?! *eyes you ominously* You better watch it. You’re not THAT much younger than me.) 😛 😉

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  11. Oops, I started a comment on this post back on Wednesday and then never got around to finishing it. (I think i was waiting until I had posted my own post so I could be all “btw, you won a thing!” but then I forgot).

    Wow, that video. I never would have expected that face with that voice. This has also reminded me that I need to get onto getting the paperwork in order so I can be adopted by Sir Ian. Possibly jointly with Patrick Stewart. [I totally just got distracted again by looking up this post about how much those two are complete BFFs. Never gets old].

    Once again I love the snippet, and I am intrigued about where it goes from there. Is the plan to rob the man with the rapier or something else?

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    • Haha my turn for late commenting, I got wiped out by a bad stomach bug but all back on track. And that post is the perfect thing to cheer me up! They are so adorable, especially those photos of them with their bowler hats 🙂
      Getting adopted by those two would be the ultimate. We’ll have to be adoptive sisters 😉 Have you seen Vicious by the way? TV show with McKellen and Derek Jacobi, very 70s British humour but it’s fabulous.

      And I received the voucher, thank you!!! So excited, I’ll report back with the book title that I bought 🙂

      Glad you love the snippet 🙂 – yes they are going to rob the man with the rapier, although it’s not actually major part of the plot, just a little aside 🙂

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  12. I was shocked also that George looked the way he looked. I love this song and the fact that Ian McKellen was in his video!!!
    When I turned 30 I felt cool for the first time ever!
    By the way, you won Stephanie’s book on my blog. Please pop over and confirm so that you can receive your book.

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    • Thank you, I’ve popped over, how exciting, I never win anything!

      That’s good, maybe I’ll start feeling cool when I’m 30, that would make for a nice change 😉
      And I just love that Ian McKellen despite being a very serious and well respected actor will do something fun like this. He’s just amazing!

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  13. Well, I’m a little late to this party, but Celine, c,est toi qui est “la jolie jeune femme” ! 🙂 thirty, imagine it! Thanks for sharing your WIPpet and that video!! Like others here, I immediately thought of the Paul Simon and Chevy Chase video from the, uh, 80’s!!
    Bonne Année !

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  14. I leave WordPress for a little bit, check back, and what do I find? My internet buddies are complaining about their age and their uncoolness! 😉 If my memory is correct, this is the first time I see your blog with this new look, and I must say it looks wonderful. Also, I completely see what you mean about the mental image thing. I once got the gender wrong on a phone call, and didn’t realize until I met the man face to face. Luckily he was just the instructor of a small sailing club in southern France, so nobody that will impact my GPA, but it was still awkward… As far as the music goes, the first time I heard it was last week at a friend’s bday party, so nothing ridiculously old like you seem to lament yourself about! 😀

    Your writing is stunning as ever, though I must admit the plot is a little confusing, given that I’m catching it midway through….

    Good to know you’re still around, as some of my old friendoes have gone inactive…

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