A gentle 13.7 miles today in 2h 30m. Still with lingering doubts over my ability to run for any length of time it was slow but satisfying. Now, over the next couple of weeks, I need to add some up-tempo work to ensure that I’m going to start the Blarney Half with a bit more speed in my legs than I’ve showed recently.

A curious incident occurred as I made my way back down Pigeon House Road, about 11 miles in. I was running on the road as it was a better option at that point than the rutted pavement. A cyclist, a slow fat one, approached and I moved in to run between the double yellow lines to allow him the right of way. To my astonishment, instead of moving out into the otherwise empty road he lined up his bike along the yellow lines. He was not going to change direction and I had to hop onto the pavement at the very last moment to avoid an RTA. And as the fat twonk continued on his way no amount of shouted insults or waved arms was going to make him turn around, never mind return to face the music.

Ian Hunter would have made a song about it. It is 35 years since Hunter fronted Mott the Hoople, during which time he has remained plying his trade as a singer/songwriter. Even in his youthful days he refused to compromise his principles (that good ol’ rock ‘n roll phrase) and at no time has he put popularity and fame ahead of the way he wants to produce his music. He connects regularly with his many fans by answering emails via his website.

At the age of 70 he has produced another excellent album, ‘Man Overboard’. The voice is struggling, but he never exactly had a voice like a skylark in the first place. Here he has generally slowed the pace and sings some heartfelt, meaningful but often humorous songs. In the humorous category is the opening upbeat number The Great Escape.

When you gotta get away you gotta get away
When you gotta get away it’s true
When you gotta get away you gotta get away
Especially when the other guy’s bigger than you

Girl From The Office is a wry and funny ditty reflecting on young love (lust) that we have all experienced in our working lives.

What’s she like, what’s she like, what’s she like, what’s she like
Everbody says
What’s she like, what’s she like, what’s she like, what’s she like
What’s she like in bed

Hunter has been married to Trudi for many more years than is fashionable for a rock ‘n roll star. Over the years he has dedicated several songs to her, a couple of albums back the sublime Knees of my Heart. Here he continues the practice with These Feelings, which celebrates what Van Morrison might call ‘warm love’.

The final track is Hunter’s take on an old Red Indian legend River of Tears. A simple enough story and narration but surprisingly moving for anyone blessed with a daughter. There again I think I’m the only male alive that gets teary-eyed seeing the balloon fly off without Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz so she can’t go back to Kansas.

Go to iTunes or click on the title line for the website link – do yourself a favour and buy this album.

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