Posts from 8th December 2004

Dec 04

End-Times Economics

FT + New York London Paris MunichPost a comment • 212 views

End-Times Economics

The Good News! We (well, those of us who were interested) have got our tickets for Gurls Aloud at the Hammersmith Apollo on May 28. See you there poppists!

The Other News: Apparently after booking fees etc. are taken into account this event costs exactly the same as the PWEI reunion gig…!

“time to give yrself into strange gods’ hands”

Proven By SciencePost a comment • 288 views

“time to give yrself into strange gods’ hands”: or how an IT GUY saved my BACON at the mere small cost only of the sacrifice of my DIGNITY hurrah ugh groo

mark s (by email): dear lovely IT Guy One , IT Guy Two says you sometimes undertake small computer repair jobs in a private capacity – my (v.ancient) laptop died yesterday, and my usual trusted repair place seems to have vanished (number unobtainable), so i am v.stuck and desperate – as i have no computers at all (the G3 is that the Apple Centre till Jan) x mark :( :( :(
IG1 (by email): I could have a look, but no guarantees. Pop in and see me
mark s: *scampers across corridor into IT dept*
IG2 (on viewing laptop): Is it Antiques Roadshow?
mark s (teeth never so gritted, smile never so cheerily painted): *SAYS NOTHING (EVEN ABT IG2’s JANGLEPOP GUITAR BAND)*
*more banter abt the pyramids, tudor furniture design et HA FUCKING HA cetera*
IG1: *switches on laptop by the magical trick of PRESSING THE START BUTTON HARD*
mark s: ooo! erm thank you haha oh dear

Does the umpteenth rehashing of rockism-bashing get your blood boiling?

Do You SeePost a comment • 425 views

Does the umpteenth rehashing of rockism-bashing get your blood boiling? Not as much as rockism itself, and the upcoming NFT ‘Easy Riders, Raging Hormones I [Heart] the ’70s’ Fest provides plenty of that. The programme notes posit an interesting film/life split which also finds its way into David Thomson this week:

Closer is the kind of picture one had nearly given up hopes of seeing: it’s just four people, talking to or watching each other, sniping, taunting, rebuking, all in the matter-of-fact tone whereby Julia’s character will tell one of her two men that yes, having oral sex with the other guy was much the same as serving him, but sweeter. Some critics in America have flinched from Closer and from the encounter with Julia Roberts talking in that kind of way. Those doubters say Closer is so depressing it reminds you too much of life. And, of course, that is revealing of the wretched state in which film and film comment find themselves nowadays. Once upon a time, we used to hope for films that reminded us of life. Now we put up with attempts to make us forget life, or discredit it.’

I don’t want to sound like Mark ‘Rock’n’roll, Dope, and Fucking in the Streets’ K-Punk or anything, but the link between talking game and being ‘honest’ in a ur-’70s Carnal Knowledge kinda way is so pre-Foucault (not that I’ve read him, or seen Closer). The appeal to the olden days when DT was able to enjoy such slice o’ life classics as Citizen Kane and Taxi Driver is of a piece.

Charity Update

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Band Aid 20 is now squatting atop the charts and I feel I can safely bring an end to my “History Of Band Aid” charity appeal. If you recall it involved me giving a pound to charity for every link this got. The links keep trickling in and to be honest I’ve lost count but erring on the side of generosity I feel I owe charity £37.

The charity that will be getting this princely sum is called Kids for Kids and helps the children in Darfur by lending goats to poor families (the families then keep any produce and offspring the goats produce). How can you resist a charity with a page called “Revolving Goat Project”?! It is a very good cause and as you will see spends all its money on good deeds rather than having a fancy website. Also my Mum is involved so it’s easy for me to hand the money – enough for three whole goats – over.

Thanks to everybody who linked the piece, my conscience is salved.

I was a touch hasty in stating there were no amputee/one-armed players…

TMFDPost a comment • 839 views

I was a touch hasty in stating there were no amputee/one-armed players in top flight football. H’kan S’derstjerna, a Swede who is a key player for Fredrikstad FK – as pointed out by OleM in the comments box below.

The EA Sports FIFA 2005 controversy also refered to below can be looked at in more detail if you read Norwegian here. Even if your Norwegian is ropey the title of the article: FFK-spiller fikk ekstra arm is more than suggestive of the faux pas committed when Electronic Arts failed to factor in a one armed-player into their game engine. Seemingly not just ref’s are insensitive.


Blog 7Post a comment • 390 views

Come on, did you really think this would not make the list? (I tried my hardest to veto it out of contrarianism…) Does this need to be a Christmas film at all? The plot would work at any time of the year. That said, the Christmas setting does pour an extra dollop of syrup on what is already a pretty over sweetened affair. It is not a film about Christmas, the date is irrelevant; except to illustrate what dire straits George is in, and to provide a nicely overblown family friendly finale.

That said the film should be applauded for highlighting one of the more depressing sides of Christmas: the suicide rate. Christmas is not joy for everyone. It can bring out the stresses and strains of unhappy family life, isolate the individual and with the roller-coaster ride of expectation coupled with the post-turkey arguments it can be a killer. It’s A Wonderful Life may have a vaguely ironic title, and one which may stick in the craw of the depressed this time of year, but you do get the feeling George is going to commit suicide pre-intervention. Unfortunately Clarences, no matter how inept, do not really exist so maybe we have to take that role ourselves. Maybe it is only a Christmas film for bathetic reasons, but the dark underbelly of the scenario is surprisingly apt. Forget the ending, think ‘pon the beginning.

Napoleon Dynamite as a film is a canvas

Do You SeePost a comment • 310 views

Napoleon Dynamite as a film is a canvas stretched thinly over its 86 minute running time. Nevertheless as a comedy where nearly all the laughs rely on the deadpan responses of its characters to the other grotesques in the film, it is remarkably successful. Napoleon himself defines a certain kind of geeky chic, but when you see where his background he becomes almost heroic. This is the high school teen comedy as a Jacques Tati film, and has the same surprising generosity of nature about it.

In comparison to similar British comedies of embarrassment the film bends over backwards to create happy endings for its leads. It may not be realistic (Napoleon’s brother kip certainly does not DESERVE the break he gets) but it does leave happy at the end. The comparison with Todd Solendz’s Welcome To The Dollhouse is a good one: though more to emphasize the differences. Solondz made us see how hopeless and useless his loser characters were. Napoleon Dynamite may be unrealistic in suggesting that even big time losers will get a decent break in the end, but it is more entertaining (and therefore more empty? Hmmm.)

The Advent Calendar Of Comics: Dec 8

Blog 7Post a comment • 102 views

The Advent Calendar Of Comics: Dec 8

Good news for all you lefthanders out there.

Proven By SciencePost a comment • 361 views

Good news for all you lefthanders out there.

If widespread hand-to-hand combat breaks out in your society, you’re likely to flourish!

The side effects include reduced lifespan, low birthweight and increased incidence of immune and nervous disorders. But that’s a small price to pay for the satisfaction of getting to beat people up. is back!

FT + New York London Paris MunichPost a comment • 2,238 views is back! — just a quick report to note that Andrew has scrounged up the source of the problem and put in a hopefully sufficient enough temporary fix for the moment. Rah!