Wednesday, November 09, 2005

I just did a shit that looked like a Geiger painting.

It's the first thing I've done worth posting about since June.

Monday, November 07, 2005

Classic extract from the Yorkshire Evening Post:

"A drunk who claimed he had been raped by a dog was yesterday jailed for 12 months by a judge. Martin Hoyle, 45, was arrested by police after a passing motorist and his girlfriend found a Staffordshire bull terrier, called Badger, having sex with him at the side of a road in Huddersfield, West Yorkshire.

Prosecutor Ben Crosland said the couple had stopped to help because they thought Hoyle was being attacked by the animal. But when they got closer they saw that he had his trousers round his ankles, was down on all fours and the dog was straddling him from behind.

"The defendant mumbled something about the dog having taken a liking to him," said Mr Crosland. "The couple were extremely offended and sickened by what they saw." Another passing motorist contacted the police and Hoyle was arrested as he walked with the dog down the road.

Hoyle, of East view, Marsh, Huddersfield, told police "I can't help it if the dog took a liking to me. He tried to rape me."

He repeated the ra pe allegation at the police station and added "The dog pulled my trousers down." Hoyle, who has had a long-standing alcohol problem, was jailed for 12 months after he admitted committing an act which outraged public decency.

His barrister said Hoyle had no memory of the incident because of his drunken state, but was now very remorseful and incredibly embarrassed.

Jailing him, Judge Alistair McCallum told Hoyle "Never before in my time at the bar or on the bench have I ever had to deal with somebody who voluntarily allowed himself to be buggered by a dog on the public highway. Frankly it is beyond most of our comprehension. It is an absolutely disgusting thing for members of the public to have to witness."

Friday, October 14, 2005

Hungerford Bridge

Hungerford Bridge, originally uploaded by Obi Wan Yacobi.

And autumn descends...

Monday, October 03, 2005

I've been updating. There are some reasons for this:

Firstly, I'm doing a 9-5 job in front of a computer and don't have time at work to update; and I don't exactly feel like spending more time in front of a PC to write stuff in addition to that.

Secondly, my mate Chris' blog is making me feel like mine is shit xompared to his nice fresh site.

And thirdly, the last thing I was going to write was after I managed to get a face value ticket for England's Fourth cricket Test against Australia on the Saturday on the morning of the game - but I was so worried I'd give away the technique I used that people might read it and guzump me at the Oval. So I waited before I printed it, and then it was just too much of a delay and I've never recovered my nerve.

I learnt a valuable lesson learnt from that day in Nottingham: all ticket touts, nasty souless scavanging fucks that they are, are Chelsea fans.

That's a truth that should be universally acknowledged.

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Quite marvelously, people are finding the new header atop this page quite scarey.

What I find scarey is the number of chaps around London wearing pink nowadays. Now this isn't a homophobic thing, it's just that men shouldn't wear pink. This is of course typically London - probably some sort of post-modern ironic thing, or the reclaiming of the colour. An understated male reaction by males who have grown up knowing nothing but female liberation and pushes for inequality and finding their world doesn't really favour men at all anyway.

But it still looks ridiculous.

Almost as ridiculous as the official moustache of Portugese cricket that I have ocassionally been sporting.

But that's another story (as people who regularly update their websites often say)...

Friday, August 05, 2005


Photoshopped, originally uploaded by Obi Wan Yacobi.

You can tell I was really quite bored one day.

Not now however. I'm working very hard in my new job and hardly have any time to get paid to surf the internet...


Thursday, July 28, 2005

Bike shed

Bike shed, originally uploaded by Obi Wan Yacobi.

This bike was in my Mum's bike shed. Is it mine? I can't remember.

Sunday, July 24, 2005

From the beginning of August, and for the first time since 1996, I will be doing nine to five work. And frankly the prospect is scarier than a trip on the underground.

But logically it's a mixed blessing. I relish the return of that Friday feeling - my weekends will be fulfilling once more. I dread the daily commute through London's rush hour. No longer can I point to people sardining themselves into train carriages and say "suckers!" as my arms will be too squashed against my sides to be able to perform such an action. However I am pleased that the odd life-reducing night shift will be behind me.

Red eyes begone...

Where am I going? I'm going to be scheduling all the bits in between the programmes during BBC1's daytime schedule.

Yes I know. I'm sorry. Yes promotions are necessary - programmes cannot be magically created to fit the exact necessary durations required you fools.

Meanwhile in the land of South London I have discovered that this side of the river appears to have virtually no large music or book shops. And the small ones are a bit shit.

What sort of people live here?

I Am Fucking

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Guitar solo

Guitar solo, originally uploaded by Blogmeister.

Ah, thought I'd try the 'Blog This' option from my flickr site.

Which worked quite nicely thankyouverymuch.

That piccie is from a thank you gig put on my my friend Dan (whom you see here) and his band The Feeling after they finally accepted one of the very many offers of a record contract - and it was Island Records who proffered the deal. And now Dan has large amounts of money. And there's still the publishing deal to come...

My friend James - desperate to reflect the glory - is currently working on the website. Well actually so am I; I've been eagerly taking pictures hence the one you see above. My photo site has similar fare for you to peruse and more.

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Fox "News" has always disgusted me. No news channel pushing an agenda of any political leaning is to be respected. Murdoch's media outlets are particularly nauseous as they are especially self-serving and poisonous.

These are some of the "highlights". I defy any Londoner - or for that matter any normal human being - to view this and not feel disgusted.

The Nation reports on Fox's coverage.

read this brief comparison of US and British reporting of the event.

And I will now point you to the best comment by a Londoner following last week's bombs: A Letter To The Terrorists. Good mtf point...

What the fuck do you think you're doing?

This is London. We've dealt with your sort before. You don't try and pull this on us.

Do you have any idea how many times our city has been attacked? Whatever you're trying to do, it's not going to work.

All you've done is end some of our lives, and ruin some more. How is that going to help you? You don't get rewarded for this kind of crap.

And if, as your MO indicates, you're an al-Qaida group, then you're out of your tiny minds.

Because if this is a message to Tony Blair, we've got news for you. We don't much like our government ourselves, or what they do in our name. But, listen very clearly. We'll deal with that ourselves. We're London, and we've got our own way of doing things, and it doesn't involve tossing bombs around where innocent people are going about their lives.

And that's because we're better than you. Everyone is better than you. Our city works. We rather like it. And we're going to go about our lives. We're going to take care of the lives you ruined. And then we're going to work. And we're going down the pub.

So you can pack up your bombs, put them in your arseholes, and get the fuck out of our city.

Sunday, July 10, 2005

Five things changed London last week. The first was the awarding of the Olympic Games in 2012, the other four were the explosions that have affected almost every Londoner.

Now I'm not going to sprout off about not being changed by terrorism and all that guff. I was back on the underground at 7am the next morning and didn't give a second thought to being blown up because, unlike muscle-bound machismo actors like Sylvester Stallone who refused to fly across the Atlantic after the World Trade Center attacks, I have an ability to assess simple risks and their likelihood of occurring to me. Which fortunately isn't much.

Having said all that, the section of the Piccadilly Line where the most horrific of the attacks took place is one which I used to pass through daily for many years and most of my friends still do. And it's a mightily tight fit for the train. The tunnel is a pathetic twelve inches wider than the trains that pass through it. So the explosion was particularly deadly and the attempt to clear up particularly challenging.

Piccadilly Line carriage.

But we'll go on because we always do. On my times on the Underground since Thursday - and I have taken several trips - I have seen no sign of nervousness or hesitancy. Funnily enough I saw more of a change in people's behaviour after 9/11 than I have after Thursday. We are used to bombings here and everyone considered this to have been an inevitability. And some feel here that now we've been bombed, we are over the uncertainty of "how will it come?", "how big will it be?". This thinking is wrong. The Madrid bombers intended the train bomb to be the start of a campaign against Spanish targets - that was until they blew themselves up once cornered by the police.

To our credit I have felt no negativity on the streets towards Muslims or Asians; we are a multi cultural city and, wonderfully, people's reaction to Thursday seems to be to embrace that rather than shun it.

And now we prepare for the Olympic Games. Perhaps it will always be associated (in Londoners minds at least) with last week's bombings. Our response should be a determination to put on the best games possible for all the countries of the world.

Thursday, June 30, 2005

Live 8 was good. Interesting that the three main headliners have all been associated with professional tragedy. Paul McCartney's Beatles writing partner John Lennon has a man he's never known the name of - Mark Chapman - feature at the end of every life story about him. The reunited Pink Floyd will always be associated with their founder Syd Barrett who had to leave the band after increasingly disturbing mental illness' - possibly drug-induced. The classic Wish You Were Here was penned in his honour. And The Who will always be remembered for having arguably the most amazing drummer of all time Keith Moon, who inspired the excellent Muppet character Animal and pioneered lunatic rock star misbehaviour before going too fatally far.

The tragedy experience by these performers is of course chicken feed compared to the suffering in Africa, but it is interesting that the latter two of the headliners' tragedies came about due to excess rather than deprivation. Is this inappropriate? Some may think so but I don't. At the end of the day tragedy is tragedy whether you have money or not. So well done and all that.

Regardless of the impact it has on the G8 leaders, this whole event will have at least put the issue of African poverty into the mainstream public consciousness.

So well done to Bob too.

Hats of Meat.

Tuesday, June 28, 2005

I bought a digital SLR camera recently and took over 550 photos during my time in Italy. You'd think then that a few would be okay due to sheer numbers alone. I'm still undergoing the arduous task of processing them, and here a a few tasters.

Late night bar in Florence.

Aged boats moored on Lago Di Garda

My brother walks into the garden where he is to marry.

Liquid Laugh blog

Is it normal?

Monday, June 27, 2005

I've just got back from Italy and a beautiful wedding in the Tuscan hills. It was, amazingly, my first trip to the land of passionate defensive football and political corruption and lots of the Italian stereotypes rang true. Frequently my cab journeys would involve talking to the driver who would take both his hands of the steering wheel on order to fill his quota of gestures to accompany his speech. And many cabbies would shake their head at the traffic and mutter curses quietly to themselves. If you were to listen carefully you would discover that, yes, "mama mia" is frequently uttered. And Italians are generally well-dressed - although a few go a bit too far and too many where their sunglasses in the dark. But since they are mostly the Catholic forgiving types, I'm willing to forgive as well. Very friendly though - as most human beings are.

Florence is basically a tourist circus. The beautiful old capital is known to the locals as Firenze - why do we English speaking people feel the need to have our own names for places that are clearly not ours to name? The English Channel???

When we finally found the places where the locals eat, the food was superb. I've decided that I do actually like fruit and vegetables. It's just that the fruit and vegetables in Britain are so terrible. In SE Asia I would eat freshly steamed locally grown vegetables and they were delicious. Pineapple was amazing. My brother, early in the trip, and still to be married commented that "real men don't like tomatoes". Well I don't normally like them, but in Italy they were very yummy.

After my bro's wedding, I was off to Lago Di Garda to do some photography. I will attempt to post some of my work up here in the near future. Might put some life back into this blog at least...

Mammatus cloud... How cool is that!

How to destroy the Earth. A serious exposition.

Stupidly addictive game...

Tuesday, June 14, 2005

I've moved house.

And now I'm busy preparing for my brother's wedding.

Busy busy busy...

Friday, June 03, 2005

So in the dying days of my tenancy in my flat - all on my tod - I've been observing the estate agent attempting to convince potential successors to me to pay £1200 a month for a two bedroom flat. It's a lovely place, but he'll have done a good job if he can secure that price for it.

And to be fair he's doing everything he can. Our south-east facing roof garden has been magically shifted to south. My twenty minute walk to Finsbury Park has been interpreted as "only a five/ten minute walk from Finsbury Park so it's good for the tube."

"What's the parking like?" some annoyingly tall Aussie bloke who came round asked.

"Oh, it's all free - you can park anywhere you like, there are plenty of spaces."

True; but the council, manevolent bastards that they are, have decided that there is some earth-shatteringly important reason why this should be changed and parking will in future be metered. Oh, it'll be mainly reserved for residents - but for the "administrational" fee of £300 a year.

Ah the joy of estate agents...

Wednesday, June 01, 2005

I just bought a 90g flapjack for the outrageous fee of 98p. I agreed to this because I was blinded by the cunning and devious pricing policy to knock off a couple of pennies so the product doesn't appear to cost a full pound. Oh how dizzy my head was. Had it been £1 I would never have agreed to make the purchase. I recently bought a camera that was £199.99. I didn't realise that was practically £120.

My finances are in ruin.

Luckily renting a place to live is traditionally quoted in whole pound figures and hence I am moving to the Dark Side.

That's South London if you don't know. Kennington in fact. I've never lived with people I don't know before - they seem quite nice though. I'd have felt really nervous about this before I went travelling but I've learnt that people, on the whole, are generally quite benevolent and friendly.

You wouldn't agree with me if you are a reader of the English press. But I find it best to ignore everything they ever say. It makes me a far more chilled out person and I probably have a more realistic grip on reality.

Meanwhile, the French have said non and the Dutch have said nee to the European Constitution mainly because the public ignored what their media had to say and chiefly because it runs to 265 unreadable pages!!!. Compare that to the 50 page US Constitution - and it has American-friendly extra large text and simple to understand sentences.

Whilst the US Constitution is a political document for the people, the EU Constitution is a political document for politicians. Goriddancence.

Play this flying fire fighting game The instructions are in French so I should say: The up arrow makes it go down. The down arrow goes up. Left and right increase and decrease speed. The idea is to skim the plane over the water to fill your tank then to dump the water on the fire using the spacebar.

It's bastard difficult.

How to perform Strongman stunts!

Videos of people crying as they eat.

Read this Manchester Buccaneers blog - absolutely genius!

Thursday, May 19, 2005

The Force is a Tool of Satan! (Don't think it's serious though...)

Excellent bunny suicide cartoons...

Thursday, May 12, 2005

I've been collecting quotations recently. One of my favourites is:
"Quantity has a quality all of its own."
- Joseph Stalin when describing his Red Army's chances against the German military machine.

I like to use it in everyday life.

My cab driver yesterday gave me another one...
"To women kindness means weakness" - Ronnie

Here are some more of the ones I like:

"Moral indignation is jealousy with a halo." - H. G. Wells

"Glory is fleeting, but obscurity is forever." - Napoleon Bonaparte

"Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former." - Albert Einstein

"A lie gets halfway around the world before the truth has a chance to get its pants on." - Sir Winston Churchill

"I do not feel obliged to believe that the same God who has endowed us with sense, reason, and intellect has intended us to forgo their use." - Galileo Galilei

"In theory, there is no difference between theory and practice. But, in practice, there is." - Jan L.A. van de Snepscheut

"Never interrupt your enemy when he is making a mistake." - Napoleon Bonaparte

"Women might be able to fake orgasms. But men can fake a whole relationship." - Sharon Stone

"If you are going through hell, keep going." - Sir Winston Churchill

"I'm all in favor of keeping dangerous weapons out of the hands of fools. Let's start with typewriters." - Frank Lloyd Wright

"Black holes are where God divided by zero." - Steven Wright

"There is more stupidity than hydrogen in the universe, and it has a longer shelf life." - Frank Zappa

"When you have to kill a man, it costs nothing to be polite." - Sir Winston Churchill

"Reality is merely an illusion, albeit a very persistent one." - Albert Einstein

"No one can earn a million dollars honestly." - William Jennings Bryan

"In the end, everything is a gag." - Charlie Chaplin

"The object of war is not to die for your country but to make the other bastard die for his." - General George Patton

"I don't know anything about music. In my line you don't have to." - Elvis Presley

"Vote early and vote often." - Al Capone

"Hell is other people." - Jean-Paul Sartre

"Some editors are failed writers, but so are most writers." - T. S. Eliot

"Woman was God's second mistake." - Friedrich Nietzsche

"Now, now my good man, this is no time for making enemies." - Voltaire on his deathbed in response to a priest asking that he renounce Satan.

"A witty saying proves nothing." - Voltaire

Navigate to this excellent world statistics site.

Meet The World

Saturday, May 07, 2005

So Labour got in again - at least we didn't see Michael Howard's smug face walking up Downing Street.

I'm increasingly of the opinion that the media is overly negative. There is much to be critical about; but that criticism is too often aimed in the wrong direction. However Jeremy Paxman's excellent interview with George Galloway deserves an honorable mention. Galloway probably gets mostly unfair publicity; he is not some maniacal anti-Western idiot like some would have you believe. However by standing in a consituency against a hardworking and benevolent MP simply because it is the place where he can take advantage of the racial tensions and ethnic makeup for electoral advantage is pretty low I think. Perhaps he thinks he's the best person to represent he sort of people in that constituency but he's not said as much and I wouldn't believe it on this occassion.

Here is the interview:

JP: We're joined now from his count in Bethnal Green and Bow by George Galloway. Mr Galloway, are you proud of having got rid of one of the very few black women in Parliament?
GG: What a preposterous question. I know it's very late in the night, but wouldn't you be better starting by congratulating me for one of the most sensational election results in modern history?
JP: Are you proud of having got rid of one of the very few black women in Parliament?
GG: I'm not - Jeremy - move on to your next question.
JP: You're not answering that one?
GG: No because I don't believe that people get elected because of the colour of their skin. I believe people get elected because of their record and because of their policies. So move on to your next question.
JP: Are you proud...
GG: Because I've got a lot of people who want to speak to me.
GG: If you ask that question again, I'm going, I warn you now.
JP: Don't try and threaten me Mr Galloway, please.
GG: You're the one who's trying to badger me.
JP: I'm not trying to badger you, I'm merely trying to ask if you're proud at having driven out of Parliament one of the very few black women there, a woman you accuse of having on her conscience 100,000 people.
GG: Oh well there's no doubt about that one. There's absolutely no doubt that all those New Labour MPs who voted for Mr Blair and Mr Bush's war have on their hands the blood of 100,000 people in Iraq, many of them British soldiers, many of them American soldiers, most of them Iraqis and that's a more important issue than the colour of her skin.
JP: Absolutely, because you then went on to say "including a lot of women who had blacker faces than her"
GG: Absolutely right, absolutely right. So don't try and tell me I should feel guilty about one of the most sensational election results in modern electoral history.
JP: I put it to you Mr Galloway that Nick Raynsford had you to a T when he said you were a "demagogue".
GG: Sorry?
JP: Nick Raynsford. You know who I mean? Nick Raynsford. Labour MP?
GG: No, I don't know who you mean.
JP: Never heard of him?
GG: I've never heard of Nick Raynsford, no.
JP: What else haven't you heard of?
GG: Well, I've been in Parliament a long time...
JP: He was a Parliamentary colleague of yours until very recently.
GG: Well, most of them just blend one into the other, Jeremy, they're largely a spineless, a supine bunch.
JP: Have you ever heard of Tony Banks?
GG: Yes I have, yes.
JP: Right, Tony Banks was sitting here five minutes ago, and he said that you were behaving inexcusably, that you had deliberately chosen to go to that part of London and to exploit the latent racial tensions there.
GG: You are actually conducting one of the most - even by your standards - one of the most absurd interviews I have ever participated in. I have just won an election. Can you find it within yourself to recognise that fact? To recognise the fact that the people of Bethnal Green and Bow chose me this evening. Why are you insulting them?
JP: I'm not insulting them, I'm not insulting you.
GG: You are insulting them, they chose me just a few minutes ago. Can't you find it within yourself even to congratulate me on this victory?
JP: Congratulations, Mr Galloway.
GG: Thank you very much indeed. [Waves, removes microphone]

Galloway gets ready for a fight.

Obviously I'm not feeling too bad about the economy. I just bought a digital SLR. Link: Ooh baby.

The Dullest Blog in the World.

Wednesday, May 04, 2005

Sometimes peoples failure to understand technology is a wonderful thing.

The Pentagon recently published a report about the shooting by the US forces of the Italian special agent who had just rescued a kidnapped journalist in Iraq. In true US style, there was a certain amount of censored information. Now, if you go to this PDF document which was pulled from the Pentagon website, select the text tool, select any of the censored text and paste into a Word document and you can view all!

Feline Crisis game!

Monday, May 02, 2005

What is it about the cinema that always has me sat next to the people who laugh at the jokes in the advertisements before the feature? They actually responded positively to a WKD ad! Now that's lack of taste. So it wasn't any surprise that these same people laughed all the way through the Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy.

Charging Through The Midfield's quick capsule review: visually good, vaguely entertaining, not many laughs. Maybe because I've heard and read all the jokes countless times before.

People who react positively to beer commercials lower the standards of the Earth so that the rest of us must suffer. If we were all only a little more discerning and cynical the standards would be forced upwards and our culture would move onwards at a nice steady pace.

Meanwhile the nation is still meandering forwards towards a general election which holds the people in a vice-like grip of boredom and asked to participate in an eternal struggle between the puppet on the left or the puppet on the right.

"I think the puppet on the left is more sincere than the puppet on the right... Wait a minute, the same man is holding them both. It's George W Bush! And wait. He's got a hand controlling him too! The puppeteer is a puppet!"

I especially like the way that lots of people aren't voting Liberal Democrats because, and I'm quoting many a person here, "They've got no chance of winning". Because, I don't know about you, I didn't know we got prizes for correctly guessing the correct party. What a great system. I though, you know, we all voted for the party that was closest to our actual views and then the most popular party would govern. The Liberal Democrats puppet hasn't been picked up yet - it's still lying on the floor. Maybe that's why we can't vote for it.

Do you like the way I went from an entry about the cinema to one about polical manipulation? Did you like that?

The Fwapometer... oh dear.

Kitten War

Wednesday, April 27, 2005

I'm having a kind of blog writers block. Which might be a problem as I can only write an entry about this once. Excepting of course for the possibility that I turn this site into a blog purely about having writers block - there are stranger weblogs out there believe me.

It's not that my life isn't interesting, but I have never wanted this site to be a chronicle of my life. When I traveled I was happy to regail the tiny fraction of the world that was interested with stories, but what can I write about working nights. As an employee of the BBC I'm not naive enough to write up my thoughts on work as it could land me in trouble even to say something complimentary.

I can probably say that there have been a spate of meetings and seminars about personal blogging here in the last few weeks. But it is too boring to tell you about.

And I'm not going start telling you about all my family and friends lives. Nor about things like who I might fancy and why there is a strange growth on my foot.* Who would give a fuck?

But thinking about it who gives a fuck about my opinion of the Catholic church, or about the struggles I am having writing words for a website that is of no objective importance whatsoever?

What about this: I reckon that in the future we will have a neural implant that allows us to access the internet. So for instance if we see a word that we don't understand, we can access on online dictionary, much like a future version of this, and find an answer. Or even order stuff to buy.

Of course such an implant wont be too popular but after such a thing is invented a few will take it up and the rest will inevitably follow. It may take a while but it'll happen. Then some people will start writing the equivalent of trojan horses and worms which will implant annoying messages in peoples heads. We will get bastard spam, and Viagra advertisers will send subliminal advertising so we are only subconsciously aware of their plug. Sales of this ancient drug will jump temporarily through the roof and there will be much controversy.

* Mum - I don't have a strange growth on my foot. Apart from my little toe.


Friday, April 22, 2005

In the end it's always the links that win out over the prose...

Who should you vote for?... take the test.

Headfuck traffic game.

Thursday, April 21, 2005

My last post resulted in no death threats.

What is the world coming to?

Tuesday, April 19, 2005

The last Pope, bless his soul, did an excellent job of filling the Vatican with conservative hardline types like him. You know, the sort of people who nodded knowingly when the infallible one told Africans that using condoms was no more likely to prevent one from contracting HIV than not using one.

And so the Catholics of the world are likely to get a traditionalist man in charge. Now normally I would hate the thought of anyone with an old-fashioned right wing leaning getting anywhere near any reigns of power. I wouldn't like it if I discovered Santa was a Tory. But in this case I'm rather hoping that a extremist right winger wins through after the white smoke billows from that ridiculous chimney.

A chimney.Idiots celebrate the sight of smoke even though they do not know what it will result in. They experience intense disappointment however when they realise the smoke is not a particular colour.

Basically this is because I want the disintegration of Catholicism and a traditionalist will help bring this about much quicker. The sooner us humans put silly superstitions behind us, the better off we'll all be. And this might sound a little cruel but our species needs a bit of natural selection. Let all the gullible fools kill each other and their genetic information off because of their dedication to the words of some pompous self-important man with a pointy hat.


PS: Please don't think I'm anti-Catholic. I think all religious followers, especially Westerners who have access to education and a broad range of media, should know better and deserve to be laughed at equally. Well I would laugh if only the world wasn't so fucking tragic because of them. Religion is wonderful for individuals, but when it comes to the broader picture, it is possibly the most evil force in existence.

I speak as a man with a philosophy degree. That doesn't mean I'm right of course. But of course I am.

Saturday, April 16, 2005

I've become addicted to chocolate. Whilst ill and not eating too much, chocolate became marvelous high energy; low bulk food stuff. Straight after my recovery came the post-Easter cheap-chocolate period. My local Tesco are still selling Creme Eggs and other similar egg-type efforts for a mere 8p each.

I'm trying to give up I really am.

I've turned to Flapjacks and cakes in the attempt to substitute the sugar rush for something non-chocolatey, however such an act is like the Iraq War - one misery replacing another.


See a man making a solid chocolate Easter egg!!!

Online sweetie shop!

Sunday, April 10, 2005

Saturday morning saw preparations for my brother's wedding move forward at a pace. As Best Man I accompanied him to a tailor's to get fitted for the attire we shall wear on the big day near Florence in gastronomic Italy. Much garlicy red meat will be consumed. By me at least; I can imagine the females doing their usual thing of buying fancy wedding attire slightly too small and ruining their own fun via starvation in order to fit inside it.

This morning and the sun shone. At this time of year the optimists among us like to dress as if summers already upon us, whilst others are still stuck in winter. So on my jaunt down to Finsbury Park Station I observed examples of humans in t-shirts, shorts, and sunglasses; and others in overcoats, scarves and hats.

I'm not innocent of the desire to bring on the summer. I have often been guilty of venturing out sparsely dressed for the conditions. This morning I took no risks - I prefer to be hot than cold. T-shirt, jumper, jeans, and a coat.

Fuck being cold.

Destroy Charging Through The Midfield!!!

Friday, April 08, 2005

Today I am imagining the television transmissions of The Pope's funeral speeding out across the galaxy at the speed of light with their destiny being on the screen of some advanced alien entities. And they will point at images of the millions of gathered Catholics showing off their religious convictions with whatever their equivalent gesture is and say in their own alien way,
"Aarrgghh ha ha ha ha!!!... What gullible idiots."

See proposed London tube map for 2016.

Sunday, April 03, 2005

I had planned to play golf yesterday. On a day off I actually rose from my cot at 8.30am in order to facilitate the day in hand. The last time I raised a metal stick to a ball was at a golf course near Agnes Water in Queensland Australia. For the equivalent of £5 my friends and I got half an hour at a driving range, a loan of a set of clubs and trolley, a whole bunch of new balls to waste away, a round of nine holes - not your pitch and putt types either, but par 3, 4 and 5 thingys, a putting competition, and it was all rounded off with a sausage sizzle; as many as I could eat. The course was well kept, the greens were lush, the sun shined continuously and kangaroos gathered as disinterested spectators; they like the well-kept grass. Beer was sold in the clubhouse and consumed en route from one hole to the next.

I suppose I haven't played at a proper golf course in Britain so it seems unjust to complain. But one difference is definitely the weather. In anger God, or whatever other force, cast down water from the sky and used areas of differing air pressure to drive the contents of the atmosphere across the land at a faster speed than is comfortable on a golf course. So day cancelled. But in preparation I had a taste of the difference between the two cultures approach to golf. I was told I should where trousers and a collar or smart jumper. "You've got to keep out the riff-raff" my friend Rob informed me. The round would cost £15, clubs and shoes had to be provided by my friend (they would have no doubt cost more) and I would have to visit a golf shop to purchase balls. Not the greatest encouragement for potential new golfers. And I was only able to go because I was going with a member. Not such a restriction in Oz.

Here are some pictures of a snake eating a kangaroo. Possibly a potential golf fan lost.

Meanwhile I actually got an email from someone who has stumbled onto this site. Only the third since October 2002. The informant informed me (for that is what informants do) that an animated being named Avery Ant has put himself forward for Pope. Although the animator has already taken it upon himself to draw the Pontiff's tall hat - which probably won't go down well with the Vatican. If I was running for Mayor I probably wouldn't do too well if meeting and greeting with the Mayoral sash already festooned across my chest. Good luck to him I say. Maybe he'll let his flock wear condoms.

Thursday, March 31, 2005

Last night I went to The Marquee Club to see a friend's band lovingly entitled The Feeling. It should be noted that The Marquee is no longer the world famous venue in Charing Cross Road where some of the biggest bands of the sixties and seventies played as this had some years ago become a Wetherspoons public house. Although the no doubt structurally important pillar I once saw a couple use as a prop to shag each other whilst the club was full remains, albeit with a new coat of paint.

The old Marquee was great...

No, this was a venue in Leicester Square which has no doubt taken the famous name in order to increase its standing in the city. So much so in fact that being on the guest list apparently still doesn't get one in for free. Bah.

I've known Dan, the lead singer of The Feeling, since he was knee high to a grasshopper - which is very small indeed.

I hadn't seen The Feeling for nearly a year and a half but I had obtained a CD of their tunes last March and took it with me travelling - and mightily impressive it was too. In the desire to accumulate as much money as possible for travelling I had purchased virtually no new music for months so it was a welcome addition to the collection of CD's I took to S.E. Asia with me. As my plane flew into Bangkok International Airport at the start of my trip I had "Kettle On" playing in my ears - quite against the usual avian advice to switch off electrical equipment on descent. "I'm coming home" Dan crooned - quite contrary to the situation I was in but seemingly appropriate nevertheless.

The music became a genuine sound track to much of my trip. Listening to some of the songs again I am reminded of a guesthouse room in Thailand's Koh Phangan and waiting for a bus whilst passing through Australia's Bundaberg (and needing cheering up as I had that morning said goodbye to a wonderful group of people I had befriended). And their songs are rally top quality.

"They've got an army of teeny boppers now" my friend James, Dan's brother, informed me. And so it was true. When they came on the dance floor packed itself out and in front of me was an army of trendy-types singing along to every word. I knew they were trendy (and I freely admit that is a word my mother uses) because they all had ridiculous 1980's haircuts. As did Richard the band's bassist.

And it is possibly because of Richard that all the people were there. For he is boyfriend to cat-like being Sofie Ellis-Bextor who was there at the front. Plus her mum the goddess like Janet Ellis - of Blue Peter fame - was there too. And I am reliably informed that it isn't the patronage of a best selling pop singer that has bought along these masses but rather the encouragement of Ms Ellis who must have some maternal influence on them all. Regardless it was a good gig.

Luckily I was wearing my Blue Peter badge.

Saturday, March 26, 2005

Over the last three weeks I've hardly been in the mood to socialise or make lots of phone calls. But very occasionally - very occasionally it seems - I do receive calls from my friends.

But somehow they always manage to contact me when I'm on the bloody underground. On average I must spend less than half-an-hour a day out of mobile phone signal range, so it would be pretty unlucky you would think if I always received calls during this time. And my journeys are always at different times so it's not some time-based annoyance.

During these three weeks I have answered a truly pathetic 23 incoming calls; with five having got through but for one reason or another I have missed. Meanwhile the number of times someone had attempted to call me whilst I have been travelling on a tube train is eleven.

Annoying. Thinking about it - I spent a week convalescing at my Mum's during which I spent zero minutes on the underground. So make that makes seven per cent of my life over the last three weeks that has been spent on the tube. And that is when about a third of calls to me have been made!


Fascinating stuff that the entire internet should know about I'm sure you'll agree.

Monday, March 21, 2005

If I was not in occasional pain then that picture of Tetsuo at the top would have been integrated into the site much more aesthetically.

But the image is one that I downloaded at work and my work doesn't have floppy disk drive access and my home PC isn't connected to the internet.

So I would have to put a copy of the image into a CD burning software at an appropriate desk at work, cut a CD with the image, take it home, turn on my PC, save it to my hard drive and load it up into Photoshop. Then I would have to resize and crop the image. I would put a black border only on the vertical edges ('cos I thing that would look pretty cool) and write some appropriate wording in the suitable typeface. Something like: Charging Through The Pain.

Then I would have to resave the altered image, recut a CD, bring it into work, save it to my allocated section of the hard drive, upload it onto the site I use for hosting my photos, click the link, right click on the picture, select Properties and copy the URL.

Then I would have to log into my Blogger account, select the Template tab, find the correct piece of HTML code, paste over the old header URL with the new one, save the new code, and hit republish.

And IF that all went smoothly then I should have my new header, all nice and looking good.

But I can't be arsed.

Saturday, March 19, 2005

It's been a while.

And there's been good reason too.

I am currently speaking to you thanks to the wonder of modern pain-killers and anti inflammatory drugs. Last Sunday I developed what I would have then described as a 'dodgy tummy'. I held my stomach and hoped that sleep would put it off. When the pain returned on Monday I went to work anyway hoping the displeasure would fade away. But it was too much for me - I went home wearing something like a wince.

So I ate little and waited for it to pass. Pain grew. And stayed. It remained in the same place, just above my belly-button, and became a permanent feature of my life. Worse still, hunger remained, and food smells were magical.

By Wednesday it was too much for me. In genuine agony I dragged myself down the street in an attempt to join a local GP. No can do. I was directed to the Drop In Center at the nearest hospital (which doubled up as the A&E department). So I caught the bus to the Whittington Hospital in Archway. I waited whilst doubled forward in an attempt to relieve pain. I was first seen by a buxom Caribbean nurse. I could tell she'd been doing this for a while: I've never been treated with greater rudeness and impatience. I was berated for not dealing with it earlier.

"WHY did you not see a GP before?" she demanded.

"I don't know" I whimpered, avoiding the temptation to apologise to her for being a member of her public in health difficulties.

When the doctor saw me she prodded me a bit, asked me a few questions and furnished me with antacid pills and a bottle of indigestion-type syrup. "In reality these Drop In Centers aren't that good because no-one will follow up your case. I don't really know what's wrong with you. I'll schedule you a scan and book you an appointment with a gastro-enterologist." Neither medicine did anything and the pain continued unabated. Not eating but with an appetite I went back to work last weekend for a couple of days. I shouldn't have done, but I wanted to work.

Yet I couldn't take the pain on the Monday and on Wednesday morning I was in so much pain, after nearly doing so twice before, I called 999 and asked for an ambulance. I was bouncing off the walls in pain and I couldn't take it anymore. Half an hour after putting in the call I was called back.

"Unfortunately Sir our ambulances are very busy this morning. Is there any other way you can make it in?"

"No. I'm in too much pain."

"Okay, wait there, don't eat or drink anything, and we'll send someone when we can."

One hour later I answer my phone again:

A concerned girl spoke. "Unfortunately we have to prioritize our ambulances and it will be a while before we can dispatch one to you."

Fair enough, I wasn't bleeding to death on a street. But by this time I was very worried about my condition. The pain had remained constant and ever-present in the same place.

"If you can get a taxi in your wait will be shorter than if you waited for us to get to you." I agreed to try to get in myself.

My Mum had called me that morning, and, bless her nylon stockings, decided to take time off work and join me at the Whittington. The girl on the phone advised me to take some paracetamol for the pain. I had previously avoided this as I had known that it can increase stomach problems and even cause bleeding. Bah.

I took my paracetamol and my Ma joined me in the queue. The nurse this time was an extremely friendly young chap who looked Thai. "Fill this" he said. My Mum handed me a large bottle of water and rightly encouraged me to drink muchly. The doctor carried an impression of importance and knowledge. He poked various parts of me.

"PARACETAMOL???" He bellowed, looking over his glasses at me. (I cannot remember if he had glasses, but my mental reconstruction of him has them in it.) "I cannot believe that they advised you to take that." He bemoaned the state of the modern NHS and how advise given over the phone was ofen dangerously incorrect. "Do not take paracetamol." He took the antacid pills the previous doctor had given me and prescribed new, stronger pills that did pretty much the same thing. "These are the most expensive medicines for your condition". "But expensive doesn't mean best" my Mother wisely countered. He instructed me to take double the dose suggested on the label and drink much more of the indigestion stuff.

Whilst I was at the doctors, the paracetamol had reduced the pain so I went home positive that perhaps things would improve if I kept disciplined. The doctor had ruled out any major disease and also unpleasant things I was worried might be afflicting me like a stomach ulcer, Irritable Bowel Syndrome, or an intolerance to a type of food.

But the pain continued. The medicine did nothing. I'm still bouncing off the walls beseeching the air around me and clutching my stomach "Why? Why won't the pain just go away? GO AWAY PLEEASE..."

My Mum, upon hearing my condition was unchanged, wasn't likely to wait long before acting. "I'm coming round, taking you to Barnet hospital and then you're staying at home with me." I didn't object. Barnet Hospital was where I was born - this was a return to my roots. And besides, my flat was in a disgracefully dirty state - not a good place to be ill. Barnet A&E actually looks like an A&E. There are ambulances outside and wards next door. The Whittington felt like a glorified doctors surgery. Wonderfully the waiting room was empty. "Fill this" said the nurse.

The doctor saw me and did the usual prodding - eliminating all the nasty diseases. "I'm stumped". I squirmed in pain for the umpteenth time. "Okay we'll take a blood test and I'm going to get a second opinion."

He fetched a nurse and a consultant surgeon. At last a proper test and a specialist/expert person. He felt around, felt around a few other places, and sent me off for an X-Ray.

So basically Barnet worked out in about one hour that I had torn an abdominal muscle. The doctor filled my hands with Ibuprofen and PARACETAMOL! Like a scene from a Simpsons episode he emptied his pockets of drugs. "Take these..."

"And these..."

"And these."

Blessed relief!

So now I'm am atopped with drugs. There is still a bit of pain, but nothing like what it was.

And I can eat!

Whittington = shit

Barnet = good

Meanwhile during my absence my good friend Chris has set up his own wonderfully entitled blog Igirisujin Ni Nihon in preperation for his self shipment out to the land of Japan and it is already better than mine. Bahness galore.

Wednesday, March 02, 2005

A whole week since my last post but at least I spent my time being vaguely active. This weekend I went to Brighton to visit friends. Friends who have a young cat (or a slightly aged kitten) called Marcus.

So although I received excellent hospitality I was placed on some sofa cushions on the floor with the sofa frames above my head and to one side. Which basically means I was at the center of the cat's playground.

So I lay down in the darkness and my foot was stuck slightly out the bottom of the duvet - pounce. I laughed and quickly moved the foot back under - pounce. My other foot moved - pounce. I kept my feet very still. Twenty seconds later I moved a finger - pounce. My other hand scratches a point on my chest - pounce. Twenty minutes of pouncing practice later and it all stops. I lay in the silence. After three minutes I open my eyes. A cat's head hovers staring at me from about six centimeters. Our eyes met for several seconds.

I had read somewhere that in the cat kingdom, when eye contact is made, the superior is the one who doesn't break the stare. So with that in mind I won that encounter. However I'm not sure if Marcus was playing as thirty or forty seconds later... pounce.

In the morning I am woken up early my more pouncery. After a few minutes of existing as a semi-conscious involuntary plaything I give up the idea of getting more sleep and roll one of my hands into a fist. I sit the aforesaid hand on top of my duvet and have it quiver* as if to recreate a small furry thing. Marcus duly responding by demolishing my arm with his claws and teeth.

* - The entry for quiver in the Urban Dictionary uses the following example to illustrate its meaning: "Right before you come, let me know so I can shove this shampoo bottle up your ass. You'll quiver".

There is no picture of Marcus available to show you. So to make up for things, here is a list of catty webcams:

Lisaviolets Cats
Erik Max Francis' Kitten
Amsterdam Cat-Food Dish
Cat Nap Cam
Kitty Cam
Kat and Calypso
Randy Cam

Other weird and bizarre webcam links.

But if you have a bit of time and lots of patience to spare, type: inurl:"ViewerFrame?Mode=" into Google. Bit pot luck but click on a few links and some will have you in control of various webcams. Good luck.

Wednesday, February 23, 2005

Recently the Stella Awards announced the 2004 winners. The Stella Awards are given to frivolous and ridiculous lawsuits and are inspired by Stella Liebeck who successfully sued McDonald's for $2.9 million after spilling a cup of their coffee over herself in 1992 whilst a passenger in her grandson's car...

5th Place (Tied)
Kathleen Robertson of Austin, Texas was awarded $780,000 by a jury of
her peers after breaking her ankle tripping over a toddler who was running
inside a furniture store. The owners of the store were understandably
surprised at the verdict, considering the misbehaving toddler was Ms.
Robertson's son.

5th Place (Tied)
19 year old Carl Truman of Los Angeles won $74,000 and medical expenses
when his neighbour ran over his hand with a Honda Accord. Mr. Truman
apparently did not notice there was someone at the wheel of the car when
he was trying to steal the hubcaps.

5th Place (Tied)
Terrence Dickson of Bristol, Pennsylvania was leaving a house he had
just finished robbing by way of the garage. He was not able to get the
garage door to go up since the automatic door opener was malfunctioning.
He could not re-enter the house because the door connecting the house and
garage locked when he pulled it shut. The family was on vacation and Mr.
Dickson found himself locked in the garage for 8 days. He subsisted on a
case of Pepsi he found and a large bag of dry dog food. He sued the
homeowner's insurance claiming the situation caused him undue mental
anguish. The Jury agreed to the tune of $500,000.

4th Place
Jerry Williams of Little Rock, Arkansas was awarded $14,500 and medical
expenses after being bitten on the buttocks by his next door neighbor's
Beagle dog. The Beagle was on a chain in its owner's fenced yard. The
award was less than sought because the jury felt the dog might have been a
little provoked at the time as Mr. Williams, who had climbed over the
fence into the yard, was shooting it repeatedly with a pellet gun.

3rd Place
A Philadelphia restaurant was ordered to pay Amber Carson of Lancaster,
Pennsylvania $113,500 after she slipped on a soft drink and broke her
coccyx(tailbone). The beverage was on the floor because Ms. Carson had
thrown it at her boyfriend 30 seconds earlier, during an argument.

2nd Place
Kara Walton of Claymont, Delaware sued the owner of a Night Club in a
neighboring city when she fell from the bathroom window to the floor and
knocked out two of her front teeth. This occurred whilst Ms. Walton was
trying to sneak in the window of the Ladies Room to avoid paying the
$3.50 cover charge. She was awarded $12,000 and dental expenses

1st Place
This year's runaway winner was Mr. Merv Grazinski of Oklahoma City,
Oklahoma. Mr. Grazinski purchased a brand new Winnebago Motor home.
On his trip home from an OU football game, having driven onto the freeway, he
set the cruise control at 70 mph and calmly left the driver's seat to go
into the back and make himself a cup of coffee. Not surprisingly the RV
left the freeway, crashed and overturned. Mr. Grazinski sued Winnebago for
not advising him in the owner's manual that he could not actually do this.
The jury awarded him $1,750,000 plus a new Winnebago Motor home. The
company actually changed their manuals on the basis of this suit just in
case there were any other complete morons buying their recreational

However for one reason or another, the list you have just spent minutes of your life reading is a complete fake; probably because it is much more interesting than the real thing. Which is why I printed it.

Clicky click here for the genuine, and more boring, awards.

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

Today is Free Mojtaba and Arash Day - two bloggers imprisoned in Iran who ran blogs.

Committee to Protect Bloggers

Bloggers Without Borders

Bloggers Bill Of Rights

Tuesday, February 15, 2005

This is what I love about the internet. In a recent post I remarked on a spam email I received hailing a character called Gouranga. So I decided to do some research. And of course within minutes I discovered the inevitable: somebody else had already done the research for me.

Now being a thorough sort I would never trust the research of someone else and present it as fact until I have properly verified all the necessary. However I am also extremely lazy and need only to achieve standards that I set for myself.

The marvelous Urban Dictionary's results can be witnessed thusly. The most popular being Rob's explanation:

A word that appears on motorway bridges in north west UK. It's only purpose to annoy drivers who are left with a nagging curiosity for the rest of their day until the next day when it ceases to become important ever again.

The word, it is revealed, perhaps originated from Hare Krishna and instructs one to be happy and travel in peace. It can be now seen somewhere within the marvelously enjoyable Grand Theft Auto games (where in its most recent incarnation you may decide to gamble some of your money on a horse called Gentleman's Relish).

However forget all this. Let Joe from Germany sort it out once and for all. Good man that.

Screenshot from the first GTA game (which was a bit shit).

Sunday, February 13, 2005

Never give out your password or credit card number in an instant message conversation.

Prophet says:

Obi Wan Yacobi says:

Prophet says:
hows things

Obi Wan Yacobi says:
not bad: at workl doing some online courses.

Obi Wan Yacobi says:
what you up to then?

Obi Wan Yacobi says:
surfing the net?

Obi Wan Yacobi says:
can you write my next blog entry?

Prophet says:
that would be creative right ? .. sorry i only do technical ..

Obi Wan Yacobi says:
got any word documents I can publish?

Prophet says:
i can install linux on you laptop if you like ?

Prophet says:

Obi Wan Yacobi says:
I don't have a laptop. But thanks.

Prophet says:
writers block huh ?

Obi Wan Yacobi says:

Obi Wan Yacobi says:
ooh, online courses for Cool Edit.

Prophet says:
i'm building a PVR !

Obi Wan Yacobi says:
and that is?

Obi Wan Yacobi says:

Prophet says:
a personal video recorder

Obi Wan Yacobi says:

Obi Wan Yacobi says:

Obi Wan Yacobi says:

Prophet says:

Prophet says:
you stuff a tv card into your pc and it records all your favourite programs whenever there on

Prophet says:
you dont even need to know when there on, just what the program is called

Obi Wan Yacobi says:
not bad.

Prophet says:
oh, it gets better

Obi Wan Yacobi says:
If you ever came into the building I'm sitting in now you'd probably come in your pants.

Prophet says:
it will also play your mp3s ... show your photos .. and play every arcade game ever written from pong to outrun

Obi Wan Yacobi says:
that'll be a computer then.

Prophet says:
that will be a home media centre

Obi Wan Yacobi says:
Clever things those. very useful.

Obi Wan Yacobi says:
I've got a computer.

Prophet says:
a set top computer

Prophet says:

Obi Wan Yacobi says:
How does this differ from a computer then?

Prophet says:
yeah ? .. how many operating systems are you running ?

Obi Wan Yacobi says:
No cooling fan?

Obi Wan Yacobi says:
I'm at work. Fuck knows.

Prophet says:
the computer is that big white noisey thing on your desk .. this is a sexy little black (or brushed aluminium) box that sits under your tv .. makes no noise .. and records all your favourite programs while your out .. then when you do have time to watch tv .. there's always gonna be something on for you to watch ..

Prophet says:
plus you can pause live tv .. rewind the action .. skip the adverts ...

Obi Wan Yacobi says:
I know the garb. But.... pause live TV. I feel a misnomer hitting me repeatedly round the head.

Obi Wan Yacobi says:
This is technology used in the braodcast industry for years now making it into peoples homes...

Obi Wan Yacobi says:
Once I do the BBCs technology vision course I'll be an expert at this shit.

Prophet says:
yeah ... once upon a time there was a little company called tivo .. they had a really great little product .. 5 years ahead of its time ...

Obi Wan Yacobi says:
Well, I'll have heard about it.

Prophet says:
but then then sky bought it up and canned its ass cause they felt it threatend their interests

Obi Wan Yacobi says:
aye, but they stand most to gain from it.

Obi Wan Yacobi says:
and its arse, not ass.

Prophet says:
5 years on and every home in america has one and every home in england is still using vhs !

Obi Wan Yacobi says:
Not me baby, I watch all my programmes off the transmission server three days BEFORE it goes to air!

Obi Wan Yacobi says:
Now that's technology!

Obi Wan Yacobi says:
I'll stick to my PS2 for my home entertainment.

Obi Wan Yacobi says:
Where's my blog entry then?

Prophet says:
if you have and xbox you can turn that into a pvr !

Obi Wan Yacobi says:
yeah but no decent titles to play on it

Prophet says:
blog ... it would only be me raving on about big companys shit canning good ideas ...

Obi Wan Yacobi says:
go on then...

Prophet says:
... microsoft fucking the world over ...

Prophet says:
.. why america is so much better than england ...

Prophet says:
... why its ass and not arse ...

Prophet says:
Can I not just cut and paste this conversation?

Prophet says:

Obi Wan Yacobi says:
Marvelous. Two inernet related activities for the time of one.

Prophet says:
so anyways ..

Prophet says:
the most usefull thing you can do with a PC is put the HD's into caddies

Obi Wan Yacobi says:
Go on...

Prophet says:
setting aside the fact that they last 10 times longer cause the live in little air cooled boxes ..

Prophet says:
BTW ..

Prophet says:
if you ever want to see a modded PC ...

Obi Wan Yacobi says:
How interesting...

Obi Wan Yacobi says:

Prophet says:
i currently have my power supply hanging out the back of the box .. and a aluminium vent porting the CPU heat exhaust via a vortex cooler straight out of the back , where the PSU used to be

Obi Wan Yacobi says:

Prophet says:
thus the inside of the box is cool and all the heat goes straight out the back

Obi Wan Yacobi says:
LIke all that hot air coming out of your ARSE yes?

Prophet says:
the nvidia FX 5900 is super cooled with heatpipe supersincs .. the HD's as i said are independantly cooled with there own internal fans in the caddies ..

Obi Wan Yacobi says:
I'd love to stay and chat.

Prophet says:

Obi Wan Yacobi says:
But I've got to go and eat my own flesh.

Prophet says:

Prophet says:
eat ...

Prophet says:
i new there was something i keep forgetting to do this week

Tuesday, February 08, 2005

Prize for the greatest SPAM email I have received recently goes to Neateye.

No attachments, just this short message:

Call out Gouranga be happy!!!
Gouranga Gouranga Gouranga ....
That which brings the highest happiness!!

Of course the sender (whose email I am wisely holding from you) could be someone I know with an odd new Gouranga themed email address.

Who knows, or indeed dares, to dream...

I turned to email Junkbox after deciding to turn away from yet another chart orientated television title starting "The 50 Greatest..."

Who votes for these things? Of course everyone knows that the general public is very stupid indeed and when acting en mass is the very embodiment of hell on earth. This weekend saw a run down of the greatest music videos of all time, which wasn't really as it was voted for by the public. And hence a not terrible but far far far from special Robbie Williams offering (something about rocking DJs) made number four.

This wouldn't be so bad if the pundits that are wheeled out to provide commentary weren't so simperingly positive. Presumably not wanting to undermine their own show and/or discourage people associated with the clips to refuse to appear the producers of this programme asked their guests or editors to make sure each video was "bigged up" (as they might have undoubtedly said). Much better television would have been provided had we been able to see an interview with someone saying it how it really was.

"This video is an average piece of work that gained notoriety because parts of it were banned - although nothing about it could be said to be outrageous or cutting edge and no boundaries whatsoever were pushed back. This piece of shit shouldn't even have been mentioned here."

I'd liked to have seen a few more Michel Gondry efforts. He is the director who recently crossed into the feature film world with the excellent Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind. Some of his videos include the choreographed masterpiece of Daft Punk's Around The World, the White Stripes Fell In Love With The Girl the beautiful one take genius of Massive Attack's Protection and a wonderful palindromic spilt screen video with a Japanese band called Cibo Matto with their track Sugar Water. These are genuinely amazing videos and huge technical achievements.

Robbie Williams taking his clothes off is not my idea of music video nirvana.

But I shouldn't care - it is just another chart rundown I don't take any notice of.

Wednesday, February 02, 2005

After change happens it can be quite difficult to maintain previous habits. And so it is with this blog. New job, new abode, and I'm finding it difficult to find time to write entries for this page. Plus I have to admit there has been something of a mental block recently.

Now I know that no-one's interested in a daily account of my life. "Today the tube journey took ten minutes longer as there was a passenger alarm set off on the train in front of us." Snore.

Actually that wouldn't be true as today I was chauffeured into work in the back of a Mercedes. Very nice I know, oh yes. But anyway it's not a very interesting thing to read, and so I'm forever attempting to create new and novel new pieces - mixed of course with pointless philosophising like this.

And so the entries can become a little short.

Thursday, January 27, 2005

things often happen, quite often...

...When it comes down to it, it is an undeniable fact that things, being a grouping of stuff, always happens on a given occasion. And, logically speaking, given occasions always occur at a given moment - which, in turn, also happens pretty regularly, i.e. quite often. So, it can be deduced that happenings occur very often, if not all the time. And things are contained within these happenings. Therefore the conclusion, that things often happen, cannot be avoided. Furthermore, since this aforementioned instance (that things often happen) is a permanent and regular state of the universe in which we live, the aforementioned happens quite often really.

Some have argued that, since this aforementioned state of affairs can be subjected to a sort of plurality of logic to deduce a second, higher stage of things, the conclusion reached above should be pluralised further still to a third stage. Such a controversial view would state that very often things often happen, quite often. Many of those who argue for what is known as the third way used to express a support for an infinite pluralism of things happening. Arguments for this infinite pluralism of things provoked much controversy and intrigue.

The original statement read "it is our opinion that very often, often things often happen, quite often and regularly to the extent of being often regularly." However these infinitists have been criticised for making too light of things - which does not seem to feature in their thinking anywhere near as often as the term often. This is objectionable, it is claimed, because the statement reflects a greater state of time - expressed in the term often - than it does the occurrence of things. Therefore the infinitists statement suggests that things do not happen often enough. Faced with this claim, the infinitists re-stated their philosophy to read "stuff usually happens". This made many people very unhappy and it was suggested that this latest statement mocked things. Thus supporters of the third way grew in number. However it should be noted that this appears to be something of a knee jerk reaction to the infinitists temerity in the face of some serious philosophy. In my opinion, the third way goes both too far and not far enough. Please, please ignore this latest philosophical inclination and choose either the first way - as originally expressed in Greek thought - or try to understand the infinite way. This last way can only be defined to you by yourself. Give it a go, because it can provide a much more complete understanding of things.

Tuesday, January 18, 2005

I have long ago stopped caring about the music charts, although I hasten to add not about music. After all, why should I care what 13-year-old girls are buying in their lunch breaks at ASDA? In fact I am so indifferent towards most of the, ahem, "musicians" in the charts nowadays that I have decided that many of these groups should be re-branded 'children's entertainers'. For that is what they are: their primary talents are usually dancing, pretty faces and nice smiles. Which is fine, but not in the charts. And many in the media still use the charts to gauge what they believe is the current cultural climate. But in reality it is mostly nothing but an over-inflated blow up doll filled with other peoples toss.

Now every time I have a conversation with anyone about music-orientated shallow and commercially created products aimed at kids I always correct them with the insistence that they drop the description 'music', 'song' or even 'chart topper' and replace it with the more descriptive 'children's entertainment'. And I urge you all to do the same.

The worst thing about these bands is that music production technology is so advanced that out of tune singers can be corrected with modern vocoder-type software and boring singing styles covered up with simple effects or, more usually, by using the same old harmony style. However dance moves and sexy legs have to be real talents. Which isn't really the point of a music artist.

Compared to what we are witnessing today, Elvis Presley, whose fame is being cynically exploited by men in suits with elastic wallets, is a musical genius. Although his talents were limited to singing and prancing about. Yes a pretty good voice, very distinctive. But Elvis’ fame comes largely from his legend. After all he was a musical interpreter rather than a creator. Like the children's entertainers of today, he didn’t write his own music, could not play an instrument, his manager made more money than he did, and never really put any of his own personality into the music. Here was a man who was a huge Monty Python fan – but did anything in his career reflect this part of his soul? That a man who could not tap out Green Sleeves on a piano is now widely regarded as a musical legend is a sad indictment of today’s children's entertainers.

Perhaps my despair with the once entitled hit parade has clouded my view to such an extent that I regard any trend reflected in the charts as one I should oppose. But Elvis' current popularity seems more to do with an unusually clever way of selling a box set to die hard fans than any genuine cultural phenomenon. In previous years one really would not know who would top the charts. Occasionally there would be a real surprise. Who would have thought the Sex Pistols could blaze their way to top slot and simultaneously upset so many?

Now, any similar cultural scream for recognition would be and probably already has been muffled by the big supermarket chains that stock what they like. And they only like guaranteed sellers and pre-sales deals with major labels. When I saw in Music Week in the early nineties the announcement that supermarket sales would be counted towards chart position I knew the game was up. And how right I was. Now we have a different number one every week and most marketing people in the industry would be able to tell you who would occupy that slot for the following three weeks just by looking at a few projected advertising and distribution figures.

But I have not relayed the worst of it, oh no. Labels are now increasingly using software that analyses songs, compares various aspects to previous hits, and judges which will be most successful at the checkouts. It’s bad enough that many artists seem to be in a kind of paradoxical competition to sound more like each other; now we have computers instructing them to do it. It's a very sorry state of affairs – I'm convinced we are reaching the lowest of low points.

I had some experience in an A&R department at a record company. That is the department that scouts, signs and develops acts. Since that time people have occasionally asked me how to get a record deal. I'd usually reply in some convoluted way with mention of managers, promotion, getting the band’s name out etc etc. But one A&R chap I recently spoke to put it much more succinctly.

"The entire process a band and its management have to go through to get signed is best described using only one word," he explained to me.


But soon enough the embarrassment that is the singles charts as we know it today will probably end. Many in the industry think that physical singles will no longer exist in a few years – after all why would anyone spend £3 on a CD single when, even if you actually pay, it can be downloaded for 89p? And I'm hoping charts based on these figures will better reflect the nation’s musical predilections. Not that I'm expecting too much. But at least out of touch producers will stop looking at the soulless, vacant, piece of shit singles charts and cease cramming yet more of the same turd down our throats.

Of course it is just when things are at their bleakest when the musical gods produce a mainstream occurrence that rises spectacularly like a phoenix out of the flames. I specify mainstream because I have no problem with the music being created today, just the excrement that gets thrown at us everyday. There are some bloody marvellous offerings to be had if you look for them. But you have to look for them. And the clearly testicular nature of the musical market of today suppresses much potential artistry from ever coming to fruitition.

And thusly Top of the Pops will die a lingering death. Not because it has been badly produced or scheduled at the wrong time but rather because it can only ever be as good as the chart music it is obliged to show.

But if we were to re-brand crap aimed at school kids as 'children’s entertainment' perhaps a new chart would be formed for that shit (which ITV will inevitably air) and the real music could take centre stage again. I could save Top of the Pops! What a great first act that would be for my new employers!

It's not going to happen.

Friday, January 14, 2005

It looks like I'll be working for Auntie Beeb by the end of the week. Which is probably good news but does it mean I must curb my opinions and become a neutral? Hmm, well, perhaps not. (Important: my views are my own and not those of my new employer. Obvious I know, but still..)

And so I will have to face that all-important impression-giving stage that all new recruits must go through. This isn't a suit and tie affair, so choosing clothing is the first issue. Most of my wardrobe consists entirely of jeans and t-shirts. There is a strong possibility that these will be okay in the long term – however we all know I must start out by donning something more smart looking. Or, as the proper English goes, something "smarter". Although not too smart lest I leave new colleagues with impressions of sadness (the small tuft of hair on my upper chin should take care of that - a very useful visual tool).

I must not, under any circumstances, arrive late for my first day. Even if London is showered with car-sized meteors and London Underground decides to pack in the service whilst large-scale electricity cuts are accompanied by arctic temperatures and hurricane winds should I arrive as much as twenty seconds late. People who operate in live broadcasting environments tend to take notice of human concepts such as timekeeping. And thusly so must I.

Which means ensuring my alarm clock is in full working order as the presence of body odour should not be an option and a morning shower shall be had in the proper leisurely manner.

Next I have to make the almighty effort to memorise my new colleagues names. Especially those of my superiors.

Everybody will be my superior. Either in terms of position or basic experience in the department.

I am particularly bad at remembering names. Usually I ask once and take no notice of the reply before I ask to be reminded again several minutes later. Not uttering the words "What was your name again?" more than three times to the same person in the same day will be a necessary motivational rule.

At this point it occurs to me that if I did not feel the need to write a regular weblog entry, I would not even be considering all these potential worries. I tend to bounce through life naturally, instinctively doing pretty much the right thing. Normally I would perform all these actions without a second thought. Now, because of this bloody blog, I’m thinking too much about trivial things like a normal member of the general public. And we know how unbelievably stupid people are. Oops, sorry, that’s not towing the BBC party line at all. Sorry.

I have no opinion one way or the other.

Tell my wife hello.

Sunday, January 09, 2005

Ah the blessed beer jumper. The garment I can wear to every visit to a pub in a given period and have all the pungent smoke and beer smell get attached to that rather than half my wardrobe.

Before, I would come home, smell the disgusting aromas of pub upon my person, and have to chuck my clothes into my gathering of impending laundry. Thusly my choice of clean clothing would be greatly diminished. Now this isn't a problem with t-shirts, of which I own a great many, and which of course also retain that classic BO smell. Trousers strangely lose their smell. But jumpers; jumpers are a mirror for odours past and present. A rhinoceros can walk to a spot and using its nasal senses can build a mental picture of the activity there for up to two weeks previous. So it is with jumpers. I have relatively few and so such a tactic is both practical and inspiringly easy on my usage of washing powder.

Hence this week I will be wearing my dark blue Bench hoody to all my public house activities. Mmm, imagine the memories it will eventually hold.

Of course I will have to carefully explain the phenomenon to all my drinking buddies in advance should I occur any social repulsion - but once I am inside the drinking establishment, all possibilities of revulsion at my smell will evaporate, as I will reekily blend in with all around me.

This week I have already sported said hooded jumper at The Twelve Bells in Finsbury Park, and I shall go in unison with it to the pound-a-pint event that I fervently hope will be taking place on Monday night at Charing Cross Road's traveller spot Walkabout. Great will be the smell there. Half will be the number of temporarily ruined jumpers.

A curse has already been set upon my shiny raincoat that holds and steadily releases the smell of smoke for decades after use.

Thursday, January 06, 2005

Continuing in the series of publishing Word Docs I find on Internet Cafe hard drives:

"Our new project will address issues of gender identity, body representation and mediatized lives through non-narrative physical dramaturgy. The work will be choreographed after the performer’s improvisations, balancing between idiosyncrasy and metaphor.
We look for a performative language that is based on our Corporeal Mime training and, at the same time, undermines its own codes of representation, shifting levels of address and presence.

In this new project, falsa imago aims:

To develop the idea of a mediatized intimate life approached with a tape recorder in “damaged by miracles” with the use of a video camera, filming preset scenes indoors and outdoors as well as directly live on stage and of a television on stage.

To develop the idea of the body as a map approached in “God knows why I keep making a puzzle of myself” (Gallery 291,London Feb 2004), with photographs of body parts either filmed and animated or at human dimensions representing the performer’s identity in search for its definition, image, gender specificity, geographical roots, social consistency.

The body as a territory, to be found, defined, mapped, armed,
represented, fictionalized, invaded, fought for, in war, bordered, destroyed or deconstructed and rebuild, in peace, expanded, erased, visited, colonised, culturalised, predicated, purified, civilised, cultivated, dogmatised, named, identified, traded, protected, cherished.
In terms of relation, intimate, sexual or political, this same geographical body will become the terrain of appropriation of misappropriation, games of physical war.

A puzzle applied to the human body represents our constant dismantlement of oneself and the other’s psychological and physiological entities with the longing for a lost and impossible plenitude (sexually embarrassing children in search for long lost Paradise).

am working on concepts of dismantlement, body without organs, physical deterritorialisation and reterritorialisation, and representation, most of it inspired by "A thousand Plateaus", Gilles Deleuze. I have started to work with a puppet, a red heart-shaped cushion (deterritorialised organ), a television (reterritorialised body), a video camera and a few miniDv tapes...ah and also one of Hoxton Hall's light (with lots of cables of course...)and Hoxton Hall protection gloves.
So, for the picture, I think the puppet, perfect body without organs, the red heart-shaped cushion and the television with or without me would look great really.Or just parts of my body, dismantled (as in the little video we did: "God knows why I keep making a puzzle of myself.."). The body parts will demultiply when I will be able to get a full size mannequin and make a human puzzle out of it.

Fascinating stuff....

Sunday, January 02, 2005

So now, in addition to my email inbox, my mobile's text message inbox has also been receiving spam. And so the little annoyances of Western life continue. Having this year spent much time familiarising myself with the lovely people of South-East Asia however my reaction to a message urging me to naively text a five-digit number with my name and age so I can "get to know" an alleged other person has been much changed. For I am feeling much closer to the suffering of people I can easily identify with and caring less about irrelevances at home.

Like a farming community shapes its life and culture around its industry in Europe so are communities on Thai coasts and beaches shaped around tourism. So I hope the positive public reaction to the disaster extends to enthusiastically choosing the countries affected as places to visit. A dip in visitor numbers would be a further negative effect to these areas.

And perhaps the robust public reaction has something to do with long haul travel destinations having become increasingly popular in recent times. I have dozens of friends who have visited either SE Asia or the Indian Subcontinent and so the more effective and escalating media coverage of our modern times isn't the only globalising effect on our minds. Millions have made personal connections with people in faraway places. In the past, images of suffering have been difficult to appreciate, as the few images we have seen have appeared to illustrate a world vastly different from the one we are used to. Now we see a world many of us have experienced, through hundreds of different camera lenses, repeatedly, and often via encounters made by fellow westerners.

And these are the reasons I think globalisation is not entirely a bad thing. Most anti-globalisation protesters march against the exploitation of poverty-stricken workforces, increasing pollution, and the threat of cultural, economic and political imperialism and on these issues I have huge sympathy. But describing many of their objections as issues of globalisation is misleading. To me globalisation means a world drawing together; communication between people becoming easier; travel to faraway places becoming more practical; goods becoming available worldwide; relief arriving to the distressed more quickly. But more than this globalisation means saying goodbye to insular thinking; the naïve superstitions of isolated communities; the poor and the badly educated becoming weightier political issues as the West gets closer to affected areas.

I suppose the negative attitudes regarding globalisation is because capitalism has been a big and mainly negative driving force; however the biggest pushes towards it have been more positive historical events such as the end of the Second World War, the fall of the Berlin Wall, the collapse of the Soviet Union, and the rise of the internet.

In India the economy which has been a poor one that only benefits the rich has been in a revolution because western companies have striven to take advantage of cheap wages and have relocated much of their operations there. We may baulk at what we perceive as exploitation but in reality this movement has helped India to better provide for its poor. And its poor need all the help they can get. In north-western Vietnam my friends and I got to know some local Black Hmong tribes kids. They lived in mud huts in remote villages. They were internet capable – the Vietnamese Hmong have been subjected to some pretty shocking treatment at times by their government. How easy will it be for such political tactics to be used on an increasingly knowledgeable people?

H'mong tribes kids in Sapa, NW Vietnam...

To me the ultimate and only end game of globalisation - although not one that is deliberately directed there - is a changed public perception of the world in which they live; a round world. In all of human history individual nations and their people have acted in self-interest, understanding and caring only for their own people. Only in the very recent past, in the lifetimes of the last two generations, have international bodies like the UN the EU and the ICRC had any real influence or impact on world affairs. These bodies are in existence because we live in a smaller world. You may not like these bodies much but even the blindest pessimist must admit that before the times of these institutions wars between countries were very regular affairs. Only in the last sixty years have conflicts between the major European countries, stretching back centuries, been consigned to history. Look in your history books and see the relationships between Britain, France, Spain, and Germany have been good ones only in yours and your parents lifetimes.

The inevitable results of globalisation for normal people will be less blind patriotism, less sympathy for profiteering foreign military campaigns, better unbderstanding of other peoples cultures, and other positive effects. In the end, nations and companies will have neither the desire nor the support for the selfish tactics we see today. If we survive that is: looking at the US and the middle east today I think it might take a while for everyone to join in. Bloody Christian/Jewish/Muslim fundamentalists... Fucking idiots. I stick my knob out at them.