29 January 2014 / submitted by Aaron, United States of America
Q.  Does the band ever experience stage fright or get nervous?
The band don't have stage fright - that can be pretty debilitating as an extreme anxiety. They do get nerves but not before every performance - for example, the Paralympics Closing Ceremony was a big deal so they were nervous. That was more about getting it right and nothing going wrong than the size of audiences though.
Generally the band get adrenalin rushes and excitement about playing live and it takes a while to come down from that after a show.

29 January 2014 / submitted by Ayesha, United States of America
Q.  Dear Oracle,

It's that time of year again where I must search and search for scholarships and fellowships to help finance my higher education. They have the capacity to put me on track of the career choices I am bent on pursuing. This year I feel more confident being a college junior and having an excellent internship under my belt. However, I am not good at "selling" myself in my personal statements, and they are probably the most important parts of the applications. I've had to work two jobs for the past three years to help pay for college, so these scholarships could help me ease some financial stress off my shoulders. As I am somewhat lacking in imaginative writing skills, I am a bit worried about my chances. Do you have any advice on how to talk about myself and my potential under an imposed word limit while remaining honest and "myself" so to speak?

Many thanks,
If you're so bent on your career choice, you will need to show confidence. Self-deprecation and humility aren't the way forward when you want to get ahead. I know it worked for Chris to a degree but in your case, you have to prove you want that place and are deserving of it more than someone else.
See this as your one shot - after all you only get one chance to make a first impression.
The key is to strike a balance as you don't want to be over confident - cockiness isn't attractive!
Here's what I suggest. Ask employers, colleagues, family, friends, peers & teachers if they're willing to say one positive thing about you. Compile these and work out a strategy of how to work them into your application.
Good luck.

28 January 2014 / submitted by Brisa, United States of America
Q.  Hello Oracle,
I was always wondering what was said in the end of the song Yes and I just figure it out. Is Chris just saying random stuff or is he saying something? Please reply! I really want to know what it says :)
Thank You Oracle!
I can't help think you're confusing what's the end of Yes with what is in fact a hidden track - Chinese Sleep Chant.
We haven't published lyrics to that song.

28 January 2014 / submitted by George, United States of America
Q.  Hi Oracle, I just saw a video of Coldplay playing Animals Live. I noticed Chris didn't have any shoes on??? What's that about?
I chose this question for the simple reason that it amazes me how two people from different parts of the world can send in a question around the same time that both feature questions about videos that lead me to reply with clips from the same Big Day Out performance. How mad is that?!?
You see, the question I previously answered about me seeing another live video of Sparks with Guy sitting down was this. It also shows Chris with no shoes on.
If you were watching Animals live, I'm thinking it may have been like this video from the same day.
Spooky eh?

Anyway, that means the answer to this question is: it was hot there back in 2001.

28 January 2014 / submitted by Ben, New Zealand
Q.  Hello!
My question is about this video (and others) of Sparks: Guy is sitting down. I've looked up a few videos of the song played live in that time era and Guy is always sitting cross-legged on staged. Is there a reason why? Although sitting down with a bass is slightly easier than standing up, I can't think of any reason why he would be sitting.
What's your opinion on this?
Big thank you!
Sparks is an acoustic song so I can't think of any reason why Guy would be standing either apart from it's "usual". I personally never saw Guy sit on the stage in those days.
I can only actually see two videos of Sparks from this time where Guy is sitting down. As both were in Australia, perhaps it was heat or jet lag?
The clip you sent was from Australian TV on a very small stage. The intimate setting lends itself to a cross-legged performance. The other one I found was the polar opposite. The Big Day Out was in front of a large crowd on a huge stage. It was a stifling hot day and they were under the sun.
Back then the focus was very much on the songs rather than the performance so curious as it may be, I'm afraid there's no story. Nice little video find though!

27 January 2014 / submitted by Chris, United States of America
Q.  I saw that the next edition of Q magazine will feature an article on Coldplay's triumphant return. Is there big news coming?
The new Q magazine (issue 332 March 2014) has the headline "COLDPLAY - Q gets inside their triumphant return" on the cover. I can see why it is slightly misleading as it's referring to a past return, not a future one.
There's a small feature about the Under 1 Roof gig from December. I suppose as it was the band's first live appearance in quite a while, it was billed as a return.

27 January 2014 / submitted by Tahj, United States of America
Q.  Oracle I have been a fan of you the first time I heard Clocks piano ballad, which,actually was about when the song was first released if I can recall. If I met Chris Martin in person I would ask him this question I'm asking you and that would be, what inspired you to make the song Clocks.
Clocks isn't what I'd call a ballad, Tahj. I remember back in 2002 Chris mentioned that Clocks was inspired by Muse and their piano driven music of the time.
In 2008 The Independent newspaper spotlighted Clocks in its Story of the Song feature which will tell you more.

27 January 2014 / submitted by Varsha , India
Q.  For the past two years I've had a crush on a guy, who (if I consider his personality would be the last person I'd prefer ending up with). I just can't get him over my head nor think of anyone else. He's the first crush I've ever had.
I keep on daydreaming that one day he'll ask me out for a date and things like that. Am I really stupid? Please advise.
Attraction is a funny thing. They do say opposites attract. We can find ourselves drawn to someone who annoys us or as you say is everything you'd prefer not to have in a partner. Who can say for sure what it is about someone. It may be chemical (pheromones), physical (appearance) or spiritual (auras) not to mention good old astrological signs. Whatever it is, ask yourself what would you say if he did ask you out? Would you say "yes"? If so, ask him out!
You could be missing out on finding out why you have a crush - he may not be what he seems so perhaps don't judge him. Get to know him better and you may see a different side to him.

24 January 2014 / submitted by Fer, Spain
I have been feeling like a... loser, that's the word, lately. The reason? I'm 19 and I've never kissed a girl or gone on a date with any, no question there's never been anything further than that either.
I am really self confident, and I do think I'm really good looking but there's something that stops me when it comes to girls, I don't know why.
Also, I don't know if maybe I'm waiting for a Hollywood movie kind of love/girl but those don't really exist.
What can you say about the situation in general? Any advice?
I can understand there's a lot of pressure to have done certain things by a certain age but as it's not a competition you can't possibly be a loser ;-)
Forget what others are doing - or saying they're doing - and spend less time worrying. Worry never helps a situation. Approach this as a marathon rather than a sprint.
Youngsters are all too keen to give their love away and reach certain goals by a certain age but you've plenty of time to make sure it's the right time with the right person. Better to wait and get that right than rush into anything.

It's funny isn't it because making friends and subsequent plans with said friends doesn't seem quite so daunting yet throw in the opposite sex and attraction and fear can set in. Fear of rejection.
If there are girls you like, spend time with them and get to know them but try not to think about taking things further. Slow and steady wins the race - remember The Tortoise and the Hare? 19 may seem really late but it's not, not for you.
I knew someone who also at 19 was self-assured, good looking, popular and had many friends who were girls but hadn't had a girl friend. It was all down to a different kind of confidence. To me it seems that the confidence in every day life is separate to the one required for talking to girls. Nerves can play a part in preventing things going further.
Indeed love isn't always like a Hollywood film but when you find the right girl and the right time it may feel like one! I'm sure it will feel quite natural and just happen.
Dating is hard enough without you putting pressure on yourself. There are no rules or deadlines so don't impose any upon yourself.
Valentine's day is coming up, maybe you could ask someone out on a date and take it from there.
Over to you.

If you really want someone to share your life with, you should go to clubs or something from your hobbies. If you like reading, for example, spent some time in the library. Maybe you meet someone there. Talk with girls who appeal to you. About the book they read, or what they're searching for, something like that.
If you are nervous when you want to ask someone for a date, that's a good sign. If you just ask her for a date, I don't think she'll like that.
I'm afraid that's all the advice I, and most of the others, can give you. You can't just search love. It's chemical, it just happens.
Goodluck. Isabelle.

You're not alone in this. I felt the exact same thing as you when I turned 18 last summer and asked myself if there was something wrong with me. Because boys never took any contact with me, I had never had a boyfriend. But suddenly a few weeks later I was kissing a boy on a party and at the end of the summer, after a couple times out on nightclubs I got total confidence that it was nothing wrong with me, I had just met the wrong guys before.
Also, I think maybe you and me are alike in that matter that we wait for the other one to make the first move? If I'm right I don’t know how to change that. The fear of getting turned down is the main issue.
I’ll give you one advice, and promise to be better at it myself; take contact with girls, start talking to them, say that they look nice and if they don’t respond, well then they're not good enough for you! Mainly, there will by no doubt be other people around you who has never kissed anyone just like you, and it's nothing to be ashamed of. You'll kiss someone before you know it, and with that special someone it might be a movie-like kiss?
Hanna, Sweden

It is really no wonder you feel as you do, we live in a world saturated by sex and love and the need to have a perfect type of love. You are probably quite shy, so you need to go at your own pace with this whole thing. You are not alone, many people are 'late bloomers' and only find love later in life. You need to figure out what is stopping you when it comes to girls. Whatever the issue is, you need to be honest with yourself. Love comes in many forms, so don't be afraid if you feel something that scares you initially. I wish you success on your journey to love and self discovery, Laurie.

Nobody's perfect. Everyone has their flaws and even the Hollywood movie girls you mentioned aren't perfect. I don't think you are a loser at all. Some people have their first kiss when they're 13, others when they're 30, so don't worry about it. You're only 19, you've still got plenty of time to go out on dates and stuff, don't rush anything. Being self confident is good, but to someone who doesn't know you it may come across like you're being selfish and egotistical. So when first approaching a girl, try to tone it down a little. Stop looking for a perfect girl who doesn't exist. You have flaws, the girl you'll fall in love with has flaws, but when you truly love each other, you'll be a perfectly happy couple. Amanda.

There is no need to feel like a loser. Maybe you are a little shy? A lot of girls don’t like to approach guys and wait for them do make the move. Sometimes, you have to wait for the right person, there is going to be one girl who grabs your attention like no other and you are going to be able to go up to her and say hello. On the plus side, it is good you are self confident which is hard to find in most people. Every one wants to have that Hollywood type of partner from the movies but I think the reason why they make the movies is because no one really gets it and basically a dream come true if it does. Movies are made to make you feel like it can be reality because some writers can even make you feel like you are in the book. One day you will find someone right for you, and they will feel like a Hollywood girl just for you. My advice to you is to never give up, there is someone for you and that someone will make you the happiest man alive. If you are shy, most girls will find it cute and attractive, just tell them before hand. If you do see a girl in the street and you think they are beautiful, give them a smile and be confident with the smile. You never know, she might smile back.
Angeline, United States Of America

Well, first of all the situation is f****d (sorry my words are too honest for any kind of websites), because I lived a life, abiding logic. Is there such thing a perfect mate for you? If there is, the world would be against it as logic suggests. I'm in love with the most perfect man for me as I suggest it myself, but hell, I am just a girl. An ordinary one I might add. Hope is a good word. Hope is a word that is misjudged most of the time. But, I do believe in hope. In general everyone has to have hope in life. Love. hope to love and being love.
Sofia A.

I think everybody deserves his own Hollywood kind of love and hopefully will find it, in a sense of true love that makes both feel happy. Sure, if you have a list in your head of your perfect girl, what she has to look like, what her interests should be, if there’s too much prepared in your imagination, then for someone who really wanted to get to know you - it might be difficult for her to get a chance at all. So even if there is love at first sight sometimes it is not wrong to look twice. But then again don’t expect too much from any first dates, let both sides explore each other and find out successively if there can be more.
Don’t worry about your age, those who made their first experiences earlier were not always ending up as winners. Some of your friends might brag with being advanced in this issue, but usually that means they had more errors or break ups, they don’t need to be proud for that. There is no reason for you for feeling like a looser, if your heart is not ready for love, then wait. The one who is meant to be yours will love you for what you are and not for what you could be. Good luck! L.Q.

Thanks to all those who replied to this week’s question. Remember, Team Oracle is open to anyone so if you fancy replying, click to read this week's, and send us your answer.

24 January 2014 / submitted by The Oracle, United Kingdom

As you may know, we have a weekly feature, Team Oracle, whereby each Friday we open questions of a personal nature to all of you to answer too. Then, the following Friday, I post a selection of the best answers, alongside my own reply.

ANYONE can join in so, if you'd like to, please email your response to the following question, in no more than 250 words, to before midnight Thursday 30th January.

I feel completely lost. My friends all like each other better than they like me. I used to be the glue, holding everyone together. Organising meet ups, a shoulder to cry on and sorting out disagreements. Now, they seek each other, looking for comfort, advice or a laugh amongst themselves. I haven't been cut out, but they simply do not care about me as much. How do you cope with a realisation like that? What changed? Confused and disappointed, Mindy, Australia.

Look forward to seeing your replies.

The Oracle.
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