Yesterday was a bit full on.
It kicked off with a deceptively leisurely start as I got ready for the Cardiff 10k. I was a bit blase about the race as it's not my distance. When I did it a couple of years ago I was astounded that there was such a fuss being made about a race which was just 6 miles. I do recognise that it was quite a douchey thing to think, it's a big challenge and a very life affirming thing to do. Like any of this events it also spotlights the best side of my adopted home town.
I was a little but nervous and I walked to the start line, no reason really. I did have an ambitious pace of 6:40 in mind, and random parts of me began to ache (especially my back, oi granddad!). I had time to nip into The Hilton for my now tradition pre-race slash, especially as they delayed the start by 10 minutes.
Blimey though it was tough! I did the first mile in 6:20, which upon reflection was probably a bit too fast. I got steadily slower, and by midpoint I was pretty fucked, although I was keeping a respectable pace. Even though I'd looked at the map of the route before hand I couldn't quite put all of it together in my head. It was a good, flat route if a little twisty turny, which took in The Stadium, Westgate Steet, Llandaff Fields and Potcanna Fields. There was a point on Castle Avenue where someone was breathing so loudly and in such an avant-garde jazz way that it drew looks from the crowds, I hope the runner was okay, they certainly didn't sound it. As soon as it started it was over, and I got a respectable 43:32 and an average 6:57 pace, which is fine. It was a training run for the Cardiff Half and I was pushing myself. I was happy to get a Nation Radio pen in the goody bag.
Next was a brisk walk, a shower and off to The Corner in Roath, where we were filming the first new 'Anoraks' episode for two years! 'Anoraks' is the geek sitcom which I created and co-write with the very talented director Ed Sinclair. It's a very tenacious project as we've managed to keep it alive despite scheduling issues and actors dropping out. It feels like with the casting of Sarah Bennington as Kim - the third lead character - that the final piece of the puzzle and slotted into place. We'd rehearsed on the Saturday and there was an instant chemistry between the three actors which was exciting to witness. Our camera man Chris Davies was on hand as were new additions Rachel Price and Andrew Creak as runners/support artists. It was great to see the episodes finally coming together thanks to Ed's hard work. I just turned up and said: "Say 'Falconmyer' in a funny way.'.
We wrapped at 4:30 and I had another brisk walk to get to Cardiff Central to get the train to Bristol for the Flatworms/Thee Oh Sees gig at the 02. What was great is that I was reunited with my gig kemosabe 'Grumpy' Gareth Evans for our first gig together in two years! Blimey, what was it about 2016? Yes the 02 is a shit venue, I'll only ever go there as a last resort, and this counted cause we'd failed to see the two bands in London when the Beast from the East blew in March. I was really looking forward to seeing Flatworms, and I was a bit disappointed when the t-shirts they had for sale turned out to be not much cop. T-shirt disappointment aside they were very good, a very tight three piece with a real kick who didn't fuck about, even though the lead singers mike was a bit temperamental, causing a Spinal Tap style roadie intervention.
If I'm honest I enjoyed Flatworms more than the headliners. Not that Thee Oh Sees were bad, they were great, very dynamic live, and the twin drummers just knock you out visually as well as sonically (I couldn't get out of my head how much one of the looked like the late playwright Joe Orton). John Dwyer - Thee O Sees defacto leader - likes a guitar noodle as well as a gurn, and about midway through the set and another guitar workout the day began to catch up with me and my back started to ache again. It did cause us a rueful smile as both Gareth and I pushed our palms into our backs for support on the way back to the car.
A busy busy day which I'm gonna pay for in the coming week, but what the hell, it was fun.