Posts from 22nd June 2005

22
Jun 05

Arrival

Blog 7Post a comment • 234 views

Arriving on site has changed a bit over the years, there’s no longer the trek up hill and down dale (past the happy clappies with their free orange squash and bibles) from the bus-stop to the gate. There’s also no longer the hanging about looking for a dodgy scally to shepherd you through with an iffy handstamp for ’20, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing…

Hopefully, despite “increased security measures” they won’t be checking everyone’s passport/driving licence/citizen card, in the same way they didn’t last year, or they will have got a lot more stewards in, there’s nothing more soulsapping than being this close to being in and having to wait an hour in a queue.

Without fail, once I am in, a stupidbigfat grin crosses my face, as I look enviously at those who already have their camps sorted and are getting on with the serious business of having fun. Once you are camped, maybe even grabbed a cheeky pint whilst you wait for your friends to sort themselves out, the rituals begin. Scanning the programme for bad journalism, checking when bodger and badger/pronghorn/ozric tentacles are on, making wildly unrealistic plans to, y’know, actually see some theatre this year. And then the casual saunter, feeling smug walking past the latest arrivals, wondering if there’s ever a good time to buy poppers, realising there have been a few small changes (ooh look, that food stall is here this year) but it’s still basically the same, until you reach the promised land, “yeah mate, just give us one of those big bottles of perry and three cups please”

The Glastonbury Drive

Blog 7Post a comment • 581 views

There are other ways to Glastonbury, and I have used pretty much every one. The train does not differ hugely from the coach experience, except if you get on one of the full ones you won’t have a seat and it will be a bit cattle trucky. But the first four times I went to Glastonbury, we went by car.

This can be great fun of course. You get to listen to your Glastonbury mix tapes and the radio on the way down, including shout outs from Radio One. The M4 trip is not unlike Tom’s tube experience below, as you get closer more camper vans seem to be on the road, more cars filled with gear.

And then you turn off to the only part of the drive I now miss (the rest, as you will see can be deadly). Chippenham Safeways. Why we always turned off at Chippenham I don’t know, but there was nearly always a giddy rush around the supermarket to buy bouze and other inappropriate objects (plastic bread and primula often being high on the list). Value lager bagged, apples away you would get back in the car for the FIVE MILE TRAFFIC JAM. Well the forty mile drive to the FIVE MILE TRAFFIC JAM.

There was a bit of superstition about the traffic jam. Basically as far as we could divine, it started just where your radio could pick up Radio Avalon, so you hoped for weak transmitters. My first year this all too place at about midnight and our lucky driver managed to take two shortcuts through farms. But generally it was a slow crawl until you got to the site, and were placed in the car park the furthest away from the site.

Of course this was all in the terrible scally days, and is probably much more professional now. But sine going by coach, I appreciate the joys of jumping the queue as our air-conned coach glides past the mugs in their cars.

Of course, the journey back is a different matter entirely.

Glastonbury Morning

Blog 7Post a comment • 1,030 views

One of the tiny nice things about Glastonbury is the trip to Victoria coach station. On the Mitcham Road I’m the only one booted and rucksacked; I feel like an adventurer, setting off to do magical things, separated slightly from the rest of the world. Then the tube: filled with people setting off to work, but maybe you see one or two others, with faded T-Shirts, heavy packs, a tent or groundmat by their sides. A flicker of mutual recognition. Change to the Victoria line, the number increases, two or three per carriage now, then spill out into the station and through Victoria Place, stop in Boots and there are six or seven, fretting over plasters and water bottles. From all over London, people converging on the coach station with unspoken shared purpose.

Sports Highlight Of The Year

TMFDPost a comment • 283 views

Its that time again when the best sport is on the box. No, not the television, I mean your computah box. Because its Wimbledon (which I usually hate) and that can mean but one thing.

The Return Of The ILx Wimbledon Thread

Join you host Mike Jones and a rotating bunch of tennis fanatics as they dissect the All-England tournament to bits as we speak. These are the only people who can make tennis exciting for me. Jump in now while they are only at 170 posts.

DAY 40: Amarillo – AROUND THE WORLD IN 80 LOUSY TUNES

I Hate MusicPost a comment • 349 views


It transpired that the problem in Kansas City was wholly music related. As mentioned yesterday, apparently “everything is up to date in Kansas City”. So much so that actually no-one bothered updating anything after the song was set. So two or three automobiles were the order of the day, and our armoured black limo was a bit out of place. As a plus point though they did not have any fangled communications gear with which members of the US law enforcement could mention our disappearance. On the other hand if you escape from a top secret installation buried under Graceland, they might just let you go for fear of having to explain everything.

We did manage to get a very generous exchange rate on our greenbacks and filled the boot of the car with essential supplies (at a two to one rate of gin to tonic). Then I finally pulled out a big map book to find our best way to the West Coast.

The mid west is a minefield. Literally. We were less that twenty four hours from Tulsa, Wichita was equally a short hop away and I was momentarily taken by the idea of killing a Lineman in that area. But it was a bastard hot day and I fancied sleeping in a nice bed, so I planned a couple of states along and down and this time Crispian drove a little bit more like he was driving Miss Daisy. His sense of direction was appalling though, and almost as if to raise my ire more, he kept on stopping and asking for directions. And as anyone who has lived in the UK in 2005 will tell you, you don’t want to hear “Is This The Way To Amarillo” repeatedly during the day.

TONY CHRISTIE: Is This The Way To Amarillo

Where is the joke? Where is it? It certainly isn’t in rereleasing a crap 1970’s croonathon. Peter Kay, walking. Various celebrities, walking. And lip-synching. And, and… WHAT???

No-one can call me humourless. No-one laughed longer or harder when Marc Bolan drove into a tree, and I still chuckle at The Only Way Is Up by Yazz. Well the thought of it, not so much the song. And I suppose, given the choice between The Stonk and Tony Christie I might just side with the older fella (more likely to die soon). But does this just illustrate the paucity of pop when a novelty record, one with brass hits it after all, can top the charts for seven weeks. Okay, maybe it was a blip, but then there is Crazy Frog so perhaps the public is finally waking up to my clarion call after all.

Christie does not even know where Amarillo is. I can imagine that his sweet Marie is almost certainly not waiting for him there. I believe I saw her just the other week singing Do You Know The Way To San Jose. Anything to get away from the singer of Windmills Of Your Mind, a more hypnotically tedious tune you will never hear.

So now Christie is flogging not funny, not accurate Best Of CD’s on the back of a not funny song, and Comic Relief makes lots of money. They should feel dirty. Rereleasing this is like raising money for charity by Sponsoring An Execution. For shame.

E= MC Hammer

Proven By SciencePost a comment • 1,065 views

“Einstein would have loved Glastonbury” However said scientist is not sure if he would have loved the mud. Equally said scientist gives no real concrete evidence of WHY Albert would have loved this hippy festival. Still, this is science: why never bothered them guys.

This is Einstein year still, and it follows that as much as Einstein loving BMX-ing, he would also be down with the kids at their favourite festival. I am not sure if I approve in any way of this slight of hand to make science cool. Okay, kids think Science Is Dull And Hard and in lots of ways they are right. But suggesting that
a) Einstein would love raving
b) You love raving
=
c) You could be Einstein
Seems to miss out several important leaps of logic. Nevertheless there are plenty of applicable bits of science to be done a Glastonbury, not just working out how a digeredoo works (and therefore how to disable one). There is a whole area of science completely relevant to this annual festival, namely Dog-On-A-String-Theory.

Well Sodom & Gomorrah are in the Bible

Do You SeePost a comment • 316 views

Loony Christian Channel 4 Chief Executive Thinks Big Brother Is A Religious Program Or Something.

“Big Brother winners are all role models in their way, not only because over past series they’ve included ethnic minorities, a gay man, a transsexual as well as an evangelical Christian”

So those well known Christian transexual values then. Oh Mr Duncan talks a good fight, but he would be a lot better off pushing Jamie’s School Dinners as an example of Channel 4 as a force for good than humble old BB. Though that said, ironically the current Big Brother task (one person works whilst the rest play and pretend to work) is potentially backfiring in showing how even tedious structured work can be a respite from sitting around doing nothing.

Quote Redeems Banal Story

Pumpkin PublogPost a comment • 181 views

Is someone on anti-crack at the Ananova offices? In a relatively tedious quirky entitled “Thief Falls Asleep“, is the pure gold of the final line:

Police spokesperson said: “It is like Goldilocks on gin”.

And suddenly the whole three bears story makes a lot more sense. The Daddy bears porridge/gin’n’tonic was too strong, mummy bears not strong enough. But baby bears was just right. No wonder she needed a kip.

Feather ’em

Pumpkin PublogPost a comment • 416 views

I’ve been stir-frying again. Regular readers will remember that this has long been a source of pleasure and pain round our house. Anyway for Christmas I asked for a book about Chinese cooking, so I could learn to do things proper like, and given that there are two Chinese supermarkets within 5 minutes walk of the flat, and I had no idea where I would be living / working by the end of the year, it seemed to be a good chance to get to explore the various foodstuffs, more and less exotic, available. So obviously I’ve only used the book twice so far, both in the last week or so, and both times only to cook chicken :-)

But, but, but I can report one (so far) totally ace discovery (the lesser discovery is the numminess of sesame oil as an ingredient): the virtues of feathering. Chop yr chicken. Mix with flour and egg white. Refrigerate (20 mins, or as long as it takes to chop all the other ingredients, basically). Put the pieces into a pan of boiling water, off the heat (oil worked better the first time, but seemed an unnecessary extravagance, and since the first batch was breast, the second thigh meet, I’ve no means of comparing the effects). Stir for two minutes. Drain, and set aside. Do the rest of the stir-fry stuff and then chuck in chicken pieces at the end, cook for a little longer. And lo and behold — chicken with that great takeaway texture, cooked through but still soft and not at all dried out. Num.

Inevitably, no change on the job front after all, and although we’re moving, it’s literally 20 seconds walk away. So hopefully more experiments in the future: and, of course, you’ll be the first to know, dear reader.

Blobby blobby blobby

FT + New York London Paris MunichPost a comment • 519 views

If this is true, and BB has had Maxwell “shelling prawns to the sounds of Aqua, Chesney Hawkes and Mr Blobby” then can we assume that a) BB is trying to ease the strains of the task by playing dickboy great pop tunes; or b) BB hates fun?