Friday, May 30, 2008

2005-11-05 Greenwich 018Oh excellent. A car just went past with bass thumping the dust out of the carpets, causing all fluids to pretend they were in Jurassic Park and the door on the box round the electricity meter to drift open. But best of all going out to shut it again let me see that the same had happened to all the meter panels in the road. Grossly antisocial but somehow amusing.
By the way, typing scribble.blogspot when you mean scribblenow.blogspot has confusing consequences.
I'm slightly bewildered. Other people seem to like the whole accidentally bereft of hair thing (well, most of them), even without the mitigation story deployed before them. Most odd. But also it's currently at the Grand Old Duke of York stage, so neither the applauded version or the default version presently exists. And I know that for various inadequate reasons I'm defaulting, so this new found praise is newly lost too.
I know how to party like it's 1959. Friday night. In London. Alone. Not going out because of the whole alone thing. So in a slightly too cold flat debating whether to bed, to History Boys or to Die Hard 4. I think the last, because I don't want to give up completely, although it's now later than when I first pondered this, the internet being the potentially changing thing it is, and because I've seen The History Boys and yet would get cross if I feel asleep in front of it, whereas yippee-kai-shush won't matter so much. I could always stop it at the drooping stage and watch the rest tomorrow. I've done this before with films and it's quite a good way of making you think about them, possibly by having to remember what you weren't really watching halfway through, rather than after the end.
Is it acceptable to make jokes about a friend's volunteering of her whom (er, that should be womb) which means that to minimise the number of pregnancies she ought to have the gay friend's baby using an egg from the friend with cancer again (despite wondering if the chemotherapy has actually made the canceree unable to bear children rather than unable to conceive them (or conceive healthy children) and what immune problems might occur to limit surrogacy - the information comes to me through a tortuous, unintentional and not necessarily sober route)? And there's a small part of me that wonders why if the ever-more-booked has offered her services to this other guy that she hasn't offered them to me. I mean, what's he ever done that I haven't? Apart from earn polite-, and best for my sanity,-not-to-ask amounts through exploitation of his very own Lake Erie of confidence (yes, I did pick the shallow one) and somehow contrive to be in the Pink List? Admittedly the cornucopia probably ruled out any combination with me for fear the hair would have the genetic potential to smother the Earth, thus greatly increasing global warming through insulative means and by albedo (although Mr Pink is of a similar inspired-by-briars phenotype).
And yes that was the sound of me not quite being sure what to do with sundry less than optimal situations, which are all largely too lengthy to go into this late, too complicated to explain easily and too unsuitable for public consumption.
Oh and I saw the man without a name again, who once more managed to be far less hectoring (that my brain saying The History Boys?) than I sometimes imagine (or possibly remember). There probably ought to be more but at the moment the most prominent thought associated with being rained out of St James's Park was managing to just avoid asking for a hot chocolate to "eat in" through lapsing into incomprehensibility (you can tell I'm tired, it's when all the follies come out). That and saying "Bye darling" in rush-hour Victoria to him just to see his reaction (I was going for Brief Encounter and couldn't think of any way of working a Raleigh or a turbly into the conversation; I also couldn't apparently work out that if "bye" is a contraction that it might be short for something).
It's now too late for Die Hard 4 and I'm no less tired so I think I may change my mind.

Night all.


Monday, May 19, 2008

2005-10-02 021Put it like this, the lime flavoured vodka I reached swiggingly for a few minutes ago to judge by my reaction to sighting some art head in the corner that was "oh dear God" and further such thoughts on viewing the ethno-mosaic vase with tartan ribbon trim on the other side of the room must have gone to my head.

The reason I reached for the never diminished vodka - I helped both owners move more than once and recognise the unchanging bottles hence they either won't notice the drop in level, will assume it's evaporation or possibly natural atrophy of under-used spirits or I can top it up with water and both never be found out and generously make it taste nicer - was because I got here at ten to nine, moved the car to non-residents parking half-a-borough away at about nine, having spent the usual time getting through the inner front door (Dan & Cue will recognise this door, hunger having lashed it fast to their courgette tinged memories), then wandered back and happened to loiter outside the Beethoven-the-one-from-Clockwork-Orange wipe-clean fluorescent-lit tube station just to, you know, see what the current residents look like. And then between about ten and quarter past eleven I was trying to get in the aforementioned door, was cursing the freeholder replacing the front windows with something that can withstand an AA card (my pockets contained flat keys - useless for original function as well as impromptu ones, house keys - half-ditto, car-keys - too valuable to be risked, a mobile phone - lacking anyone useful to ring, a wallet with not much money in it and nothing suitable for unscrewing the plate round the jammed lock, an A-Z and couple of bits of seaglass. No cuddly toy unfortunately). There was a brief break to bewilder a friend of my brother and resident of the same general area to check if they had functioning spare keys. Predictably the idea has been mooted but remains pending. So instead I revert to an equal mix of trying to break the door down, trying to break the will of the lock down, trying to break through mangled European mobile networks long enough to get my brother's or future sister-in-law's (headline on magazine to my left "82 rings"; that is one heck of a lot of breached promises) phone to actually ring, wondering how easily I can break the meshed glass transom window (if the putty had been on the hall side that would have been my way in half an hour earlier) and breaking down myself.

By some fluke of electrons the SIL's phone rang in thoroughly peculiar way, and an odd sounding voice answered it. It was after about a minute of me explaining too much that I realised that the Penelopes (I can't spell the proper name and the checker thinks I mean "Openness") might not be on GMT let alone BST, and so the incomprehensibility of the voice might not be solely attributable to her Scotland-is-a-different-country (in much the same way as the past is) accent. That'll do their jet-lag good.

Our own private Hermes chose that moment to visit Hades and so I sighed to crossed legs on the floor, waiting for her to ring back when she puts the words I'd been saying into the sentences they were contained in. And then I begin to wonder if she'd just rolled over and gone back to sleep, thereby impaling my brother with an errant elbow, when a text bongs into being. It is magical for using the method contained therein it takes me less than five minutes to get in, which is a personal best for that door.

And so the vodka, and putting the milk in the fridge, and having my father ring while typing the reply (how does one spell "practice" on predictive text because I kept not) thus allowing my phone to effortlessly erase my barbed apology, thence to blogging and staying up too late (but if it's an hour-and-a-half earlier, as it would be if the spare key worked like the other keys, it's not that late).

Anyway, I've sort of lost where this was going, think the vodka's worn off and am not sure whether to attend to hunger, tiredness or coldness first, so better stop.

Yours with steel-scented callouses,


Friday, May 16, 2008

20051115 - 14 Blame Radio 4The News Quiz, 6.30 this evening, Radio 4, or for a week thereafter on the website. It will be quite funny, although less funny than it was because there were some fairly non-BBC words in there along with a smidge of slander and some mass-ew jokes. Housepoints for the person who spots my brother's laugh, assuming both that it makes it past the edit and that the sound engineer hadn't just turned the microphones over us off thanks to the gang from Newcastle behind us (presumably Newcastle, Texas from the amount of a-whoopin' an' a-hollerin' an' a-whistlin' an' gen'ry makin' like a Springer ordi-onse).

From it I learnt things I didn't need to know, nor particularly wish to know, about Tony Blair's cum-face, a novel use for a scatter cushion, that a Toksvig relation had a bloodshot glass eye, that the people running the country didn't quite get round to working out what happens if one stops using protection, and sundry other things including that some comedians have a nervous tic. I also learnt that SDP-socialists (but only because she can't vote for the communists due to there being none left) don't tend to laugh at jokes about Chicester District Council. Nor any other jokes. Oh well. At least I'm not the one who brought her.

Anyway, think that's it. Seeing the radio is fun. So listen. As I probably shan't be doing because I'll be stuck on a dual carriageway somewhere. But that's what podcasts are for.


Tuesday, May 13, 2008

20051115 - 06 Just a facadeMusic 1 - The Hallelujah Chorus

Thanks to the over-Facebookage of a friend, I came across an archive of nigh on every version of Hallelujah recorded (except of course the one I was trying to find). And being someone who was looking for something without a name, I ploughed through all of them. Initially I had a column for good and another for ditch/skip. The latter had three entries before I ditched the system itself - Regina Spektor, Gavin Regan and the immortal words "Don't get Bob Dylan", both as a command and a statement. The Goods are Cale, Lang, Wainwright, Buckley, someone called Alain Crane Allison Crowe [I writes real good], although I've also written Shakira next to the name so I'm not sure it's in the right column, and finally the Dresden Dolls (relistening I'm not so sure).

Sundry other comments written live:
- Ha emphasised grates. Just don't do it kids, unless you're doing a proper Hebrew phlegmatic syllable.
- Beirut version disappointing.
- David Bazan sounds like he has to pause to check his fingers are in the right place for each chord. Major tendency to improvise last few hallelujahs. Just not good.
- Susana and the Magic Orchestra = just awful. Stretching a slow song into whale song before attempting to provide air traffic control for bats. Atmosphere nicked from Sigur Ros.
- Noam Pelled = phlegm except on 'hallelujah'.
- U2 cover as ever committing sacrilege. Worth listening to to prove that seeing the world through ever present sunglasses really does make one dimmer. Fantastically awful.
- Tony Lucca = how rude are some people? In-the-face-of-adversity sympathy points should go here.
- Arooj Aftab = just stood out somehow. Could have a higher default volume, regardless grabbed attention.
- John Jerome = Two voices.
- K's Choice = halfway to Evanescence version?
- Damien Rice is a god and my saviour. Not because he's any good, but simply by the use of a segue requiring a different song to be heard before his take on Hallelujah. Hours of Cohen covers tend to get a bit numbing.

Oh joy, thanks to editing (ok, resurrecting) this much later than it was written means I get the joy of trying assess music (via sole remaining Europarl headphone) against the background of my neighbour's son singing the falsetto parts of The Darkness (I suspect the effect is worsened by their new windows bouncing the music in my direction rather than at the ground as before). Wunderbar. I would retaliate and wang Madonna's latest offering on full blast, but that would be cruel, inhumane, tasteless, damaging to my little computer speakers (never having rigged up the connection with the proper radio) and rather boring for me. Now he's playing something I don't recognise, but sounds a bit like Shania Twain. And singing badly along, the four letter word that is three black pegs in response to Twain. Whistling along to Cheer Up Sleepy Jean is making me reconsider Madonnaing his arse, except damn the man just skipped to The Killers back when they were good. And he does have girlfriends who could pass for boyfriends.

Anyway, moving on, or reverting, or whatevering. Being me and so waiting to gain a perusal only copy of Madonna and the Chocolate Factory until after it was realised (how does the Ogre Queer do it?) I've only just heard Hard Candy. Firstly does the title mean the Madge who wasn't in Neighbours (where does NDN get his music? We don't even have a Morrisons near here. But seemingly that was one dance track too far as he's stopped now) has abandoned all pretence of being an English which is two parts Joan Collins to one Dick Van Dyke? And secondly, will the next album be called Salt-Water Taffy And Other Soft American Confectionery?

So on with the comments as listened.
Hard Candy - Her sugar is raw apparently, which leads me to the inevitable suggestion that she try E45. Or using something less splinter prone than Brighton Rock to start with. Unless there's some Candy=Candida suggestion I've overlooked.

4 Minutes - of not quite a countdown, because they had four minutes at the start but they've wasted most of that telling us they've only got four minutes. Does this know mean Madonna, with Messrs Timberlake and Timberland (or should that be Madonna and the Lumberjacks?), is shortly to go the way of the So Solid Crew albeit over a longer time-frame? This should be fun.

Bizarrely (bugger, NDN is back with the Arctic Monkeys) this manages to link in with an odd email I had until the title "fodder for jokes/reason for concern". If that's not a description of most emails sent to the blog email address, well this sentence is going to be left without a cliché. Basically someone claiming to be a writer for Scientific American in much the same way as I am a freelancer for Google (well, they own Blogger don't they, and I'm published by Blogger, so...) wants me to write about the Large Hadron Collider (or possibly Lausanne Hockey Club; he doesn't specify what LHC stands for). He has a theory encapsulated in a PDF I didn't open which does something with bugbears, a largely harmless species with grossly overdeveloped lungs that allow them to suck bedbugs from the beds they lie in.

Er basically, he thinks I should be anti the LHC because it might bring about the end of the world. He also seems to think that bewildering blog posts about homosexuality causing the end of the world (or not depending if the LHC pips the fire, brimstone and marabou thing [if only country music were predicted to cause the end of the world - we'd be consumed by fire and rhinestone]) are likely to encourage me. So there's either a rabid spammer or someone sensible grossly misjudging his audience trying to get bloggers to protest in order to stop the Large Hadron Collider (BTW, typos in that name rock).

Unfortunately I what little I remember from reading about such things is that there's nothing much stopping an all consuming black hole from popping into existence somewhere near Chipping Sodbury anyway, that the chance of making a little Big Bang manage to destroy the Earth is fairly low and even if that were to happen, what would we know about it? The only problem would be if it were a really slow working black hole, that gradually eroded the world, allowing people beyond its influence to know it was there but do nothing about it (but I'm not sure such things exist). A terminal world probably wouldn't be much fun. Unless one happens to time it right to see Mr Timberlake's clothes go for a Burton (do you think that's where he gets the cardigans?), but not yet his body, although I don't think it works like that, and isn't there something about the light not escaping, so the Timberlandscape would never be seen. Unlike in the entrails heavy video for 4 Minutes, which features MTV friendly flaying.

So I think I'm on the side of would it matter if the world, with us on it, vanished? Possibly not quite what this guy was looking for. Should you wish to join the debate find your way to the sciam blogs site and search for "has an udd in" minus some of the spaces. As someone else commented on about the only Google for the guy "The sound you just heard was the joke, on a geosynchronous orbit, passing over that person."

So having failed to devote hours to deciphering what he's on about, I can only concluded that trying to convince people of anything by flinging names of what could be projects, theories or people into a context-less welter of words is only going to get one as far as trying. An easily accessed précis, synopsis or "previously in the war against experimentation" post might increase his chances of getting anyone to listen somewhat. PDFs are bad, unsolicited emailed links to unsized purportedly PDF files unthinkable.

In NDN-news, oh God, Robbie Williams. Better possibly than hearing Rowan Williams but not by much. And if only the NDN would sing in time and not form the world's flattest chorus-line on his own two thirds of the way into the next line. Er... is that... er... Belinda Carlisle? Has this guy hacked my networked folder of dodgy music? He does know other people must be able to hear this, right? Now it's the Jackson Five. I would query if he was born on the Sabbath day, but he's just gone onto some Westlife ballad; he has no shame.

Back to the good, or not, music. Give it 2 me not only loses points for needless txtspk but leaves one wondering whose coffee was being stirred, whether the person stirring it was going to drink it or seeing if it goes off-white like Marmite (Johnny Ball's daughter said it happens so it must be true), whether Madonna has people to stir these things for her or whether she was stirring as part of her handmaiden duties required to get any producers with whatever they're calling street-cred these days to work with her. Maybe it's like giving triangle duty to the cackhanded kid, although whether that's Oh-Lordy-Trouble-So-High* or Rococo, or even Our Lady of Persistence herself, on the spoon and chipped mug, is hard to ascertain, as is whether it's being played clockwise, perpendicular to the handle or pentanglelly. The pondering of which is all rather more interesting than whatever it was that prompted such thoughts.

* Other acceptable [mis]hearings are:
- Oh Lordy, troublesome times
- Oh Lordy, trouble sometimes
- Oh Lordy, treble so high
- Oh Lordy, bubblegum trials
- Ol' Lawn Day, trombonist cries
- Our Lady Troublesome High (an specialist academy for singers who can't really but at least that stops the Alien-like disembowelling of films from the inside).

Next up on the half-illegible notes is Heartbeat, with the quote "See my woody get down, get up, get down"; sometimes one fervently hopes that one misheard as the alternative is trying to backformate a plausible derivation for the phrase. I'll merrily mull over the beveration prowess of the clan McDonnagh, but this I don't really want to understand.

Oh and it sounds like a mobile is sitting on top of the speaker, chittering away.

Soon afterwards comes She's Not Me with the immortal line "She started dressing like me and talking like me it freaked me out". Because as we all know Madonna is steadfast, as immutable as her forehead, and so forth. It gets better with "She started dying her hair and wearing the same perfume as me, She started reading my books and stealing my looks and lingerie." Yep, she, meaning Madonna rather than this cat's mother character, tried to rhyme me with lingerie. Except she doesn't. It's a weird hybrid vowel that switches from -ee to -ay as it goes along. It's almost as if she wrote the lyrics, then had someone correct her pronunciation, so used the new-to-her version in the old lines, thereby inflicting a jackknifing rhyme all who make the mistake of listening to the words. If this troubles you simply head-dub ling-ger-ree into the gap; then all you'll have to worry about is whether lingery is one's ability to loiter or lingerie that doesn't come off very quickly, due either to too many hooks and triangle-player fumblings or the froideur born of a ill-judged reveal.

I can't help feeling that the hand-claps come straight from a Harvester ad.

Incredible - "It thrilled me" is how I feel about it; not the words but intonation used on them. And towards the end it just becomes "celebrate the good times, come one" but clunkier and with annoying oohs (hmm, are my frequent oohs equally as annoying?). Although having checked, I suspect it'll just be me thinking that.

Spanish Lesson - Would you trust this woman to teach you a new language?

Voices, from the nineties, at least in the beginning. And then the tune gets going and you're left trying to remember the original words. Or to put it in as per the song: Distant echoes|from another tune|start to creep|in your brain.

And that appears to be it. If a song didn't get mentioned above then I probably couldn't find anything to say about it. One begins to suspect that Ms Andchild has been taking listens from, er, good typo, that should be taking lessons from Paris Hilton. How else does one explain the utter lacklustrery?

Think that's enough musicery for now. Except for this just to balance things out a bit.


PS. Debbie Harry raps better.

PPS. Quite liking Yoav at mo.

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