Hurrah! I've just got home to find a CD in the post from Mark. Last week when we met up, I gave him a couple of CD-Rs of stuff I'd downloaded from AudioGalaxy (Transglobal Underground, Natacha Atlas) and I also took along a load of vinyl records which he said he'd copy onto CD for me. Well, on the CD he's sent I have a whole load of Bill Nelson stuff - two mini albums (Flaming Desire and Other Passions and Chimera) and a 12 inch single, and it all fits on one 80-minute disc. It's wonderful to hear Bill Nelson again. I've not listened to him in years, basically because I resented having to buy all the albums again on CD. Also some of it would be hard to find on CD. If you've not heard of him, what can I say? He used to be in Be Bop Deluxe and Red Noise, and is the undisputed King of the EBow guitar. Fantastic stuff.
posted by Gina Snowdoll 5:54 pm
Last night I semi-watched (semi, because I was on the phone for half of it) a programme on Channel 4 which I suppose was yet another of these so-called reality TV experiments. (Yawn...)
In this programme the TV company took eight young boys and let them have the run of a house for a week, with no adult supervision. The house was stocked with food, and loads of toys, etc. I think the programme makers were hoping for some kind of Lord of the Flies situation in which the boys would form their own society in microcosm, electing a leader or some form of substitute authority figure. But did they organise themselves and make their own rules and regulations? Well, on day one - having graffittied all over the walls in the first hour of being there - the boys decided that perhaps they ought to sort themselves out so they voted as to who should be put in charge, and with that lad elected he went about compiling a list of complaints. Which were mainly directed at a little asian kid who hadn't done any tidying up (had any of them?) and who was feeling homesick.
But after this initial attempt at organising themselves it was back to anarchy, each of the boys choosing to do whatever he wanted, and no form of order prevailed.
Instead the little bastards just totally trashed the house.
There was no Lord of the Flies scenario; not even an Animal Farm. Just kids acting selfishly and destructively. Because they could.
But I wander how much of it was just plain childish showing off for the television cameras? Despite the way the programme was being portrayed, there was an adult presence there in the shape of the camaramen. There were at least two of them, as occasionally one would get in the shot by accident and there must have been another one behind the camera. The kids must've interacted with these men to some extent, even if it was just playing up to them. And at one point one cameraman rightly felt he had to interject and put a stop to the cruel taunting of a hedgehog with a stick.
So, this wasn't quite a Big Brother situation, but as the hedgehog incident shows, you just can't trust kids.
Another thought occurs to me. Would a group of similar aged girls have behaved any differently? I can't imagine they would have trashed the place like the boys did. I feel a bit let down about the fact that the boys were so awful. I would have liked to have said that there's not really that much difference between the genders and that male behaviour / female behaviour is a learnt thing. Perhaps it is true, and the boys were all acting aggressively and destructively through peer pressure or whatever. I felt the programme was inconclusive, only serving to show how awful people are, and I count the parents here too who seemed quite amused at the destruction and mess when they came to pick up the boys at the end of the programme.
posted by Gina Snowdoll 9:19 am
Thursday, May 30, 2002
Ha Ha! That was a classic typo I did in the last entry. I've altered it now, but for those who missed it here it is again: "These scantily clad girls - I don't know what they were wearing - were mining to Aqua's 'Barbie Girl'..."
Mining? The images that conjures up: girls in bikinis and mining helmets, with picks and shovels digging great holes in the hotel floor as part of the cabaret. Oh dear! That one has really got me giggling to myself.
posted by Gina Snowdoll 8:39 am
Last night on ITV there was some godawful programme called something like "Holidays from Hell". I really find it hard to sympathise with people who take a holiday in a tourist resort such as the Costa Del Sol in Spain, and then whinge and whine about the building site next door to their hotel, or the fact that there are low flying planes overhead making too much noise.
Are these people the stupidest people alive or what? There is a building site next door because they are building another hotel for more tourists like you. There are planes coming in to land at the nearby airport bringing other tourists - like you - on the same crappy holiday as you.
These brain dead types should realise that if they book such a holiday they are taking a gamble. So, if they have a crappy time they should say to themselves "Bad choice... won't do that again" instead of whinging and complaining to the whole nation. "Oh, I had a shit holiday... Boo Hoo..."
I admit, I wouldn't fancy having a toilet in my hotel room that was full up with raw sewerage, but to whine on for 5 minutes about the quality of the entertainment at the hotel reveals a preson with a severe intelligence defect. "These scantily clad girls - I don't know what they were wearing - were miming to Aqua's 'Barbie Girl'..."
Arrgggghhh! If it was so bad, then why sit on your arse in the hotel in the first place? Get out, go find something interesting to do.
Sorry, but these people are stupid bastards and deserve everything that is coming to them.
posted by Gina Snowdoll 8:15 am
Wednesday, May 29, 2002
Another of my winning bids on eBay was for a whole wodge of nearly 100 postcards featuring deer and antelope.
That should keep my Oh So Popular Deer of the Week feature going for a fair old while.
posted by Gina Snowdoll 3:18 pm
Hurrah! I can post again! Blogger has been funny all day, i.e. "funny" in a Oh, damn and blast it! way rather than in a Ha Ha! way.
posted by Gina Snowdoll 3:16 pm
Hhhhmmm... I might not be too popular with my sister and my brother-in-law, as I've just taken delivery of a cute child-size Stratocaster type guitar for my nephew (who is 6 years old). Needless to say, I got it off eBay, and I think I've found a little amp too that'll go with it quite nicely. I've also got my old Yamaha keyboard out of the attic so that my niece isn't left out. Although, who knows, perhaps she'll take to the guitar and my nephew will prefer the keyboard. I don't want to go assigning gender roles with different musical instruments here.
Having said that, I think it's bizarre that a couple of my fave bands have female bass players, e.g. The Damned and Die So Fluid. Also Daniel Ash has a female bass player in Patina Creme.
posted by Gina Snowdoll 10:15 am
Tuesday, May 28, 2002
I just want to set this straight before anyone asks.
This blog will be a Big Brother free zone.
It will also be a World Cup free zone.
Instead I will serve you up the usual rambling crap about music, telly programmes, guitars, high heels, deer of the week, and possibly even Jamie Oliver. If you're lucky.
posted by Gina Snowdoll 9:37 am
Monday, May 27, 2002
Deer of the Week: Bambi
MIKE: Bambi, Bambi, my main man! So good to see you. You're looking good. Albeit you've lost a little fur since I've last seen you, and you're walking on two legs now I see... But still the same old Bambi!
[Neil is crying softly]
RICK: Shut up, Neil, shut up! What's the matter?
NEIL: I'm sorry, everybody. I'm sorry, Bambi. I'm just remembering, like, that bit when you got lost in the snow, and the rabbit found you, it was so beautiful...
VYVYAN: Yeah, I liked the bit where you shoved the drill in the virgin otter's face.
NEIL: That wasn't in "Bambi", Vyvyan!
VYVYAN: It was in the sequel, Neil. "Bambi Goes Crazy Ape Bonkers with His Drill and Set".
NEIL: [gravely] Is that true, Bambi? Did you do a Disney nasty?
BAMBI: So what if I did? I'm not apologizing. My life collapsed after "Bambi". I was a lovable faun alright, unusable for anything else. I took the Babycham stuff, sure, thanks to Mike here, but I was finished. When the porn "Bambi" came along, well, I thought, this is where I get something back... If it hadn't been for the chance to present University Challenge and start a new life, I'd be giving executive relief to woodland creatures to this very day.
So, despite my misgivings earlier in the week, I did indeed join up with Tamsin and Sherri for a night out at a couple of London's tranny nightspots. I wore my mid-length black lace dress and my black and perspex Stiletto platform shoes (so I was nice 'n' tall). We started off at Andrea's Storme's opening night at (yet another) new venue, The Black Horse. Which was basically a gay pub with all its regular gay and lesbian clientele, plus a slingback of trannies who came along for the Storme's experience.
It was an OK venue; a little pokey to be honest, but not unpleasant. Met up and chatted with various people from on the scene: Jo and her entourage including Helen who I'd been chatting to on-line earlier in the week. Also met and yapped to Sian and Abigail and one or two others who I don't recall now in the cold light of day (Sorry!). A blonde tranny whose name I can't recall (Eeeeeks and sorry again) said she'd spoken to me online years ago, and unfortunately I had to make my excuses and leave because Sherri and Tamsin wanted to be off, so I felt a bit bad about that because I would've liked to have chatted to her. I hope I didn't appear rude.
We then went to the WayOut Club, where we stayed long enough to chat to Vicky Lee ("Ooh, the girls are out tonight!") and to scoff a pizza. We think we left at about the right time because in the corner near us things were getting seedy with some blonde creation who'd got her tits out (undoubtably silicone) and was posing for photos with a group of seedy and eager guys. What a spectacle! Tsk!
Actually it was just as well we didn't stay out too late, as my feet were killing me in those shoes. I suppose it's because I haven't worn high heels for any great length of time for ages.
I was woken up this morning by an almighty crash of thunder, there being an almighty storm outside. I love thunderstorms; the air feels so fresh and "alive" afterwards, I always think.
posted by Gina Snowdoll 4:20 pm
Friday, May 24, 2002
So, we spent a good long time in the Victoria and Albert Museum looking at this and that. I'm particularly fond of the two rooms of plaster casts - they always take my breath away. (No, not those Cynthia Plaster Cast kind of plaster casts before you say anything... Tsk! The dirty minds on you lot!)
We were looking around the Canon gallery of photography and came across Lewis Morley's now legendary portrait of Christine Keeler. I'm ashamed to say that I was unaware of the provenance of this particular pose that has been copied and spoofed time and time again. Also on display at the V&A alongside the original chair itself were spoofs with Dame Edna Everage and Homer Simpson in the same pose.
It then occured to me that even I had been inspired by this pose for a photo session I did back in 1998.
And I didn't even know what I was copying! Funny how these things enter the public domain.
posted by Gina Snowdoll 11:20 pm
Apologies for another lightweight entry, but I off to London shortly to meet my friend Mark. I'm not sure what's on the itinery; we'll just play it by ear; might visit a gallery, go for something to eat, etc. So anyway, I'll talk to you lot not now, but later (as Jools was always so fond of saying).
posted by Gina Snowdoll 8:10 am
Thursday, May 23, 2002
Not much to tell today thus far. I've been sorting out lots of eBay stuff, y'know payments for stuff I'm buying, sending off stuff I'm selling, working out postage costs for other people, blah blah blah. Streuth, I'd never have guessed there was so much admin work to do when I started this.
posted by Gina Snowdoll 1:12 pm
Wednesday, May 22, 2002
And now Blogger is annoying me too, for it will no longer publish the list of Archives on the archived pages themselves, so if you're going through the Archives you have to keep returning to the Latest page.
posted by Gina Snowdoll 1:00 pm
In case you hadn't noticed, I'm feeling incredibly irritable this week. Work has been a complete pain in the arse but I won't bore you with that and anyway I don't like discussing work on the blog; I like to keep it separate. Then the bank fucked up the ordering of a foreign draft that was to pay for something I'd won off eBay from some guy in Germany. This has meant that I'm going to be a whole week late in getting payment out to him, and I hope he doesn't leave negative feedback about me as a result. I have been keeping him informed of status; I wish he'd get back and say "That's OK."
But I think also I'm irritable because I'm supposed to be going out this Saturday night. Going out as in transgender scene going out. And I am really not looking forward to it. Not one bit. It's making me feel very apprehensive and pressurised.
So, anyway, just now this lunchtime I nipped out to the shops, and was looking around Debenhams just on the offchance I was to see something that I might want to wear this Saturday night, although I was hardly feeling inspired or in the mood for any girlie shopping. And then I spied a couple of girls from the office looking at dresses and I really didn't want to bump into them there. It's not like they don't know; I mean, everyone at work knows about me, but I just felt awkward about it, just wasn't in the mood I suppose for jibes such as "We know what you're doing here" and all that kind of thing.
Thing was, they were looking at clothes on rails that just happened to be near the down escalator and there was no way out without having to pass them first. So, I spent my time in the shop trying to avoid them and/or seeing if I could sneak past them un-noticed. Finally I went up to the floor above and them came down the escalator from there right next to where they were standing, making it look as if I'd been upstairs looking in the home furnishings section or in the restaurant. Is that pathetic or what?
posted by Gina Snowdoll 12:38 pm
This week Google have been looking for a new logo with the assistance of Dilbert.
posted by Gina Snowdoll 8:51 am
Tuesday, May 21, 2002
Yesterday my Amazon package turned up. At last. I've got some music software to load onto the computer, although I don't have the energy for that right now. I've been on the computer all day at work, and I want a rest tonight. Nothing too taxing.
Also in the parcel from Amazon were the two CDs I'd been trying to get for what seemed like AGES, namely the re-mastered "Seventh Dream of Teenage Heaven" by Love and Rockets and "Dust" by Peter Murphy. The latter features Murphy's dramatic voice over a turkish-sounding backing including such exotic instruments as electric violin, didgeridoo, classical kemenche (whatever that is), dolak (ditto), tabla, etc.
It's a really lush production. Except for one little thing. An effect known as "vinyl crackle" which is featured on about half the tracks. Which makes it sound like a old crackly record with pops and hisses, and muddy distortion goddammit! In one place it sound like a crap scratched vinyl record being played using a stylus covered in fluff and dust (hence the album title perhaps).
What a stupid effect! It spoils an otherwise wonderful album.
posted by Gina Snowdoll 6:00 pm
A few words of advice:
If you ever have to buy something from abroad; just don't bother. Forget about it. Go somewhere else.
I'm not talking to the cat at the moment. We've had a bit of a falling out. Well, not that he's noticed, but I've sent him to coventry for the time being. I came home from work tonight, and had to go out into the garden and bury two dead birds. Yes, the blighter got another one.
I know it's in a cat's nature, but I still found it upsetting.
posted by Gina Snowdoll 5:43 pm
Deer of the Week: The Chinese Water Deer
I was trying to work out what kind of deer it was that I spied on our housing estate last week one night when I was coming back from Tesco. It was certainly quite a small deer, and did not have the dappled marking of a roe deer. I decided that it must either be a muntjac or a chinese water deer, but have ruled out the latter, because as can be seen above the chinese water deer's hind legs are noticeably longer than its forelegs. I didn't notice this distinctive characteristic on the deer I saw, so possibly it was a muntjac (which was my Deer of the Week a fortnight ago).
posted by Gina Snowdoll 10:46 am
Not a good start to the day. I woke up with the alarm, which was going into a total alarm frenzy (bloody thing), and was just about to go and shower when I heard the sound of munching downstairs, and being all suspicious-like, I went downstairs to discover a neighbour's cat tucking into my cat's catfood, whilst my cat was sitting happily in the living room toying with a dead great tit. There were little feathers everywhere; I couldn't believe such a small bird would have so many feathers, poor thing. I think sometimes we forget that cats are domesticated killers. Certainly it was the first time my cat had brought a catch into the house in about five or six years.
Actually the previous time the cat brought three dead birds into the house, one after the other. It was a first for him as he'd never caught a bird before that, and three in one day! Well, he was looking well pleased with himself. But you can't really tell the animal off; it's in a cat's nature after all, and they wouldn't understand an admonitory tap on the nose.
I always thought that in the three birds incident that my cat hadnt actually killed the birds, that some other cat had and that he'd just claimed them as his treasure and brought them in the house. I recall that on the day in question there seemed to be a cats' convention out in the garden. Or perhaps the birds were fledgelings; young and inexperienced. I'm sure my cat isn't a natural birder.
Previously to that the only thing he'd ever caught were worms. Earthworms, I mean. The cat used to love it when it rained. He'd be out on the back lawn in the pouring rain playing with the worms that came to the surface. Then he'd pick one up and come in throught the cat flat and present it to us on the carpet. "Look what I've brought you!!!"
I'd have to gingerly scoop up the worm (still wriggling, for he didn't kill them) and I'd throw it out the front door onto the little patch of lawn there. Meanwhile the cat would be out the back again getting another one. On one occasion he brought in seven worms, one after the other. As soon as I'd put one out the front, there he was coming in through the cat flap with yet another one! It was quite comical really.
I hope he doesn't repeat the bird killing though. That's just nasty.
posted by Gina Snowdoll 8:00 am
Sunday, May 19, 2002
Today I went into Oxford to meet Gillian. We walked alongside the river to the Perch, where we had lunch and alcohol (hic!) and chatted and whatnot. Came home in time to check my eBay auctions - most of which were finishing today. Those that finished totalled over £90, and it seems that there's another £30 or so to come in the next few days too. Impressive, eh?
posted by Gina Snowdoll 8:49 pm
I have found the Holy Grail!
A vending machine on platform 1 of Oxford station that dispenses a Caramac bar for forty of your English pence!
posted by Gina Snowdoll 3:40 pm
Saturday, May 18, 2002
Great to see Grog from Die So Fluid on Daisy Daisy on Channel 4 last night. Who is this Daisy anyway? She's like a female version of Louis Theroux, only far more cringeworthy.
Spoke to Shel lots today! Things went well for her apparently yesterday. Sorry if it sounds like I'm talking in riddles here. Just don't want to say too much just yet without her say so.
And now I'm off to bed as I'm feeling well knackered. The late night last night most likely didn't help (as I said, I stayed up for Daisy Daisy). I'm going to go read my Robert Rankin book (Fandom of the Operator) awhile, then I'll most likely just fall into sleep...
posted by Gina Snowdoll 9:49 pm
My Amazon package still hasn't arrived despite being despatched three days ago, so I'm a bit pissed off about that.
In better news, my eBay sales are going really well. I've been looking through all my things to see what else I can sell. I've actually found loads of things, but won't put them up for sale all at once; I think it'd be better to stagger them all over the next few weeks. For one thing, it'll be horrendous trying to keep track of them all.
posted by Gina Snowdoll 12:16 pm
Friday, May 17, 2002
Hmmmmmm... I wonder how Shel is getting on...
posted by Gina Snowdoll 1:14 pm
I've been turning out my desk at work, looking for other pieces of junk ... ahem ... I mean, items of interest and immense collectability that I can sell on eBay.
posted by Gina Snowdoll 12:21 pm
The following supposedly true story I found on the Wreckless Eric Yahoo! Groups list (an off-topic posting), and it is doubtless to be found elsewhere on the web, but I thought it was amusing enough to reproduce again, so here goes:
A Charlotte, North Carolina lawyer purchased a box of very rare and expensive cigars, then insured them against fire (among other things). Within a month, having smoked his entire stock-pile of these great cigars and not yet having made even his first premium payment on the policy, the lawyer filed a claim against the insurance company. In his claim, the lawyer stated the cigars were lost "in a series of small fires." The insurance company refused to pay, citing the obvious reason: the man had consumed the cigars in the normal fashion.
The lawyer sued... and won! In delivering the ruling, the judge agreed with the insurance company that the claim was frivolous. However, the judge stated that the lawyer held a policy from the company in which it had warranted that the cigars were insurable and had guaranteed that it would indeed insure them against fire, without defining what is considered "unacceptable fire" and was obliged to pay the claim.
Rather than endure a lengthy and costly appeal process, the insurance company accepted the ruling and paid $15,000.00 to the lawyer for his incendiary bamboozle.
NOW FOR THE GOOD PART...
After the lawyer cashed the cheque, the insurance company had him arrested on 24 counts of ARSON!
With his own insurance claim and testimony from the previous case being used against him, the lawyer was convicted of intentionally burning his insured property and sentenced him to 24 months in jail and a $24,000.00 fine.
This is a true story and was the 1st place winner in a recent criminal Lawyers Award Contest.
A true story ... or so it says. Can anyone confirm or deny this? I wonder if there is even any basis of truth in this tale? I'd like to believe it was true because its makes such a good anecdote, but according to snopes.com it's just another of those damn urban legends. That doesn't mean it is entirely false, but it's a friend of a friend story, that has been elaborated and and enhanced with each re-telling.
posted by Gina Snowdoll 10:21 am
And speaking of bicycles, last night I saw one that really made me laugh. You know sometimes you'll get a bike and a half?... An adult bike with a kiddies' bike (minus the front wheel) attached to the back of it. Well, the bike I saw yesterday was like this, but instead of having the saddle on the child's portion of the bike, it had a wire container for luggage. And guess what was in the container? A folding bicycle!
What's the idea of that then? A life-bicycle in case of emergencies (like a life-boat onboard a ship)?
"Oh no, we've hit a very nasty puddle, we're going down! Man the life-bicycle! Women and children first..."
It doesn't really sound very plausible, does it?
posted by Gina Snowdoll 9:26 am
Ooh ooh! I just remembered. I was going to have a whinge about cyclists yesterday. And yes - I have been a cyclist myself. But in somewhere like Oxford it's a dangerous business because all the car, taxi and bus drivers HATE cyclists and cut them up all the time. But with good reason as most the cyclists in Oxford are bad cyclists and hardly adhere to the highway code. They cycle the wrong way down one-way roads, on pavements and pedestrian only areas, go straight through red lights, use pedestrian crossings (which is illegal as they are technically a vehicle)...
As a cyclist myself in Oxford (a few years ago) I tried to adhere to the highway code and be a considerate road user, but found that all the other traffic didn't give me any consideration as a fellow road user, obviously tarring me with the same brush as all the crap break-the-rules cyclists. Most of whom are probably stupid students anyway. (Just in case I didn't offend all the cyclists out there reading this, now a dig at students!)
Which is the crux of it really. Why are cyclists so hated by other road users? Because 99% of them are bad road users.
And it's not just roads. On my twice daily walk between my home and Didcot station, I cut through the Ladygrove Estate, much of which is pedestrianised. The wide path is clearly and distinctly divided into two halves - one half for pedestrians and the other half as a cycle lane. Nine times out of ten cyclists will be using the pedestrian side. Now that is just plain ignorant.
On a much more bitchy level, what the devil are these skin-tight lycra cycling shorts all about? I seriously recommend to anyone who is thinking of wearing a pair of these whilst on their bike that they get someone to take a photo of them, on the bike, from behind. They are very rarely flattering. Some guy cycled past me yesterday, and his great fat lycra-clad arse was the last thing I needed to see. It's a good thing that I rarely have breakfast as I think that I would have "lost" it pretty soon after having seen that sight.
posted by Gina Snowdoll 8:28 am
Thursday, May 16, 2002
Someone has left a copy of the Daily Mail out in the staffroom, and I couldn't help but notice this front page headline:
Femail declares war on the WILTS*
*That's Women In Leather Trousers to you!
I leave you to cast your own judgement.
posted by Gina Snowdoll 2:24 pm
On May 9, 1999 Love and Rockets played the Roxy in Los Angeles. This show was taped and while the crew was tearing down the equipment immediately following the show the tapes were stolen. These tapes are ADAT tapes and are about the size of a cassette.
The band reached out to the fans right after the theft but the tapes didn't turn up.
Some one has these and the band would like them back and is offering an award of $500 for the return of these tapes, no questions asked and no charges will be filed.
Just spreading the word!
posted by Gina Snowdoll 1:50 pm
I just love some of these neon art scultures I found on eBay. But, someone stop me... I've already spent too much on there without this kind of temptation.
posted by Gina Snowdoll 12:48 pm
So... I had quite a good day yesterday in the eBay auctions. I ended up winning on a couple of items I really wanted, but I'll say no more about them right now because let's not count our chickens, and all that kind of malarkey. I want to make sure that everything is delivered OK, and payment sorted out etc, before I start congratulating myself too much.
Also, Amazon have at last despatched my latest order. And about time too!
posted by Gina Snowdoll 8:14 am
Wednesday, May 15, 2002
There's this girl who travels on the train into Oxford most mornings, and she's one of those people who have the unfortunate habit of reading other people's newspapers and magazines over their shoulders. I've even seen her reading someone else's book unbeknown to the chappie who was reading it first-hand; she must have read a good chapter or so of it. Sometimes she sits in a seat behind the unsuspecting newspaper reader and she'll lean right forward and look over the seat in front of her so she can read the other person's paper. She is quite blatant about it, and oblivious to the fact that the rest of us passengers know what she is doing. OK, it's hardly a crime, but I would call it rude.
Today, I noticed that she wears a deaf aid. Which set me thinking... perhaps it isn't really a deaf aid at all. Perhaps it's a device that can tune into other people's personal stereos, so she can listen in to their music. I could imagine her tuning in to see what various passengers were listening to: "Hhhhmmm... so the tranny is listening to David Bowie today... well at least he's stopped listening to Daniel Ash over and over... Let's see what this guy over here is listening to... Craig David? Shit!..." (etc).
posted by Gina Snowdoll 8:30 am
I'm mightily intrigued. How does a cuttlefish use scissors?
I wonder if they've got a sign on the door saying "Sorry, no parrots or budgerigars allowed"?
posted by Gina Snowdoll 2:25 pm
Speaking of things I've received in the post, yesterday I was sent a leaflet advertising forthcoming attractions to the Oxford Apollo Theatre, and I really think I ought to share with you some of these "nuggets" from the world of entertaininment:
Magic - A kind of Queen (Arrrrghhh! Tribute bands! Help!)
Lee Evans SOLD OUT (Sold out, so why bother telling me?)
Sing-A-Long-A Sound of Music (Yes, let's all go and dress up as nuns just like the jolly people in the photo on the leaflet)
Abba Mania (Eeeeek!)
Postman Pat in Where's Jess? (Avoiding this pile of tripe, most likely. Cats have more sense.)
Grease is the word (Here's another word: bollocks!)
I Remember Marvin - A celebration of Motown legend Marvin Gaye (Is nothing sacred?)
Beatle Mania (Now, this is just taking the piss)
Elvis - Tribute to the King (See what I mean?)
Think Floyd (They can't even think up decent names for crying out loud! That is excrutiatingly bad.)
Calamity Jane - The Musical starring Toyah Willcox (Oh Toyah, how you've changed. I remember "Sheep Farming in Barnet" and "The Blue Meaning". *sigh*)
A Slice of Saturday Night - The 60s Hit Musical starring Norman Pace (otherwise known as second-rate shite featuring one half of "the original" second-rate comedy double act)
The Hobbit - It's a Tolkien Treat!! (FUCK OFF!!!)
Fame - The Musical (OK, that's it... I'm out of here...)
It's enough to make you give up the will to live.
posted by Gina Snowdoll 2:18 pm
Did I tell you that in the last few days I've been rapidly becoming addicted to eBay? (It's Sherri's fault). I've put up a few little bits and pieces to sell, to test the water as it were, and I keep checking My eBay to see how things are progressing and I get so excited when I see someone has made a bid. Anyway, when I decide I'm getting the hang of it all, I'm going to put some larger items on there for sale, namely my bass guitar (which I built myself out of bits of old twigs and string), and possibly my baritone guitar and my 12-string too.
I'm on the look-out for a different bass. I quite like the idea of a short-scale bass... something that goes "thud" rather than "twang". I don't want to use the same bass sound as everyone else is using these days. And I'd like an instrument that I could use as a fuzz bass. Anyhoo, there was this gorgeous little green retro-style bass I was bidding on. I was the highest bidder, but the reserve price had not been met. I kept upping and upping my maximum price until I reached £270 which was slightly more money than I really wanted to part with. The same seller was also selling a 6-string guitar in a similar style and it seemed that the reserve price on that was £300, so I figured he'd be asking the same for the bass. So, on the way home last night, I checked my bank balance and decided that yes, I could afford 300 big ones.
But time was running out... the auction was due to finish at 6:07p.m. and there I was on the train home hoping that somehow we'd pick up speed and I could get to my computer in time to bid. After a mad dash I got through the front door and immediately leapt onto the computer, logged into eBay, and ... DAMN! I just missed the end of the auction by three minutes. (Reserve not met).
This morning the postman stopped me in the street on my way to the station and got me to sign for a package (I was amazed he could remember who lived in which house, but there you go). Turns out it was the Super Furry Animals Live CD that I'd won off eBay at the weekend. Hurrah!
posted by Gina Snowdoll 8:19 am
Monday, May 13, 2002
Someone at work emailed this joke around the office this morning:
Craig David has just announced that he is to retire from the music business. He is training with the British Olympic Archery team as their bow selector.
I had to ask someone to explain it to me.
It's funny how R'n'B now means something completely different than it did 10, 20, 30 years ago. It used to mean Rhythm 'n' Blues... now it means shite dance music with some daft prat doing vocals with as many notes crammed into a single syllable as possible.
Moan, grumble, moan, etc...
posted by Gina Snowdoll 10:08 am
Sweden... What images does that name conjure up for you? Scandinavian blondes? Saunas? The laid-back people? Swedish au-pairs? Volvo cars with their headlights in the permenantly ON position? England football coach Sven-Göran Eriksson and Ulrika-ka-ka-ka? Swedish porn and erotica? (If you're that way inclined!) The Swedish Chef from the Muppet Show? Herds of Moose (Meese?) running wild through the forests?
Or do your thoughts turn to music? With such fabulous bands such as Abba, Roxette and Ace of Base...
Errrrrr... perhaps not.
Well how about Yngwie Malmsteen the guitar wizard of the scalloped Fender fingerboard, playing his speedmetal arrangements of classical pieces...
Yeah, perhaps we'll give him a miss too.
But there ARE a lot of interesting bands coming out of Sweden and beginning to gain some recognition. The Hives for example are doing very well with their high energy back to basics rock-n-roll, and quite entertaining they are too.
And then there's The Soundtrack of Our Lives, who I only discovered just over a week ago on Jools Hollands' Later; I'd bought the album Behind The Music by Tuesday and then last night there I was at the Oxford Zodiac watching them! By this time I knew all the songs, and was singing along and dancing as if I'd supported them for years.
Earlier I had thought to myself that the band's influences were most likely things like MC5, late Beatles, Stones, The Who... but I think I really ought to add in late Beach Boys and The Doors too especially considering that organ sound and the fact that Ebbot resembles a larger Jim Morrisson. (Though I have also commented that he puts me in mind of Johnny Vegas, and am beginning to see why Jools Holland thought he looked like Leo McKern, who famously played No2 in the last two episodes of The Prisoner).
The standard of musicianship was excellent, and the showmanship factor was high too, with the two very posey guitarists (one of whom enjoyed windmilling, leaping in the air and performing the occasional high kick, and the both of them inflicting a bit of guitar abuse on some poor old and battered Fender guitars) and also the bearded man mountain that is Ebbot Lundberg... on the quiet part of one song he got the whole audience to sit on the floor and then he got down and strode out into the audience singing from there... and then the music went mental again and everone was up on their feet and he was still out there in the audience singing away.
On an extended improviation on another song - during a quieter passage - someone from the audience yelled out semi-incoherently words to the effect of "Get on with it you f***ing fat bastard", and Ebbot looked out at him and scowled and you saw he was about to say something in retaliation. But then his manner changed and he turned the scowl into a smile and looked the guy in the eye and laughed "Yes, it has been a long time..." and then it was back into the song again. Wonderful showmanship!
There was a real feelgood atmosphere to the gig; everyone in the audience seemed to be smiling and really enjoying the show. Also it was great to see a whole bunch of girls (certainly near to where I was standing up by the front of the stage) grooving away, and totally disproving the theory that this type of music is for single white males.
They say that rock'n'roll is the new rock'n'roll. Let's hope so! We've had enough of boy bands and Pop Idol, generic dance shite and manufactured bollocks. We need more real bands playing real music with real talent and real showmanship. Keep it real!
posted by Gina Snowdoll 12:19 pm
Saturday, May 11, 2002
Today has been quite a lazy day, in which I've been shopping at Tesco, have been on the internet getting my head around this eBay malarkey, been practising the guitar a little bit, and have been reading through the paper (Guardian).
Shortly I'll have to consider getting myself ready for going off to this gig tonight.
posted by Gina Snowdoll 3:54 pm
RIP JN-T Speaking of Tom Baker, the man behind Doctor Who for so many years - John Nathan Turner - has died. (BBC news story here)
posted by Gina Snowdoll 3:51 pm
Friday, May 10, 2002
"You have a woman's bottom, my Lady! I'll wager that sweet round pair of peaches has never been forced 'twixt two splintered planks, to plug a leak and save a ship!"
I just had this email from Evans (the shop for the - how shall we say? - larger lady) telling me that:
The range has been designed to fit and flatter, with an attention to detail that you'll find in everything that Evans does - from wide-fitting shoes up to a size 19, to extra fabric in sleeves and trousers, to ensure a more comfortable fit.
Shoes in a size 19? (That's be size 21 in the States!) Wow! They'd be enormous. I smell a typo.
So much for the old diet today. At work we have two people leaving and about to go on maternity leave, and it's also someone else's birthday, so apparently we're going to be having a pizza feast this lunchtime (possibly with beer), and then there'll be cakes later in the afternoon. And that's not including the cookies that someone brought in this morning too. Yikes!
posted by Gina Snowdoll 9:53 am
Thursday, May 09, 2002
Hurrah! I've booked to go and see The Soundtrack of Our Lives at the Oxford Zodiac on Saturday night. According to the website the show goes on until 10:30, so that gives me three quarters of an hour to get from the Cowley Road to Oxford train station (it's about two or three miles).
posted by Gina Snowdoll 3:38 pm
Errrrr... Why doesn't someone turn that alarm off outside? (Fire alarm? Intruder alarm? I don't know)
I think we've got the message now.
posted by Gina Snowdoll 8:11 am
Wednesday, May 08, 2002
OK... who hit this site with a search for "pink paisley guitar wallpaper"? I really would genuinely like to know, because perhaps this pink paisley guitar enthusiast would like to buy my two Fenders from me.
I've just been listening to the album "Behind the Music" by The Soundtrack of Our Lives (which I bought earlier today). It's fantastic! I feel a new fave album coming on.
What's more I have only just found out that they were playing a gig in London tonight. Damn! I would've liked to have gone. I see they are playing Oxford on Saturday night, but getting home from Oxford on a Saturday night is bad news as the last train is at 11:15. I only live 10 miles away from Oxford but it's more convenient to have a night out in London than it is to do the same in Oxford (i.e. easier to get home at the end of the evening, and trains run later).
Grrrrr... However, I might ring the venue tomorrow and enquire as to when the gig goes on to.
posted by Gina Snowdoll 8:52 pm
Well, at least I had a better sleep last night. But this morning is grey and dull, and doesn't seem to be worth getting up for.
Oh... there's that thing called "work" that I have to do. I was nearly forgetting.
posted by Gina Snowdoll 8:21 am
Tuesday, May 07, 2002
Oh dear! This story made me laugh. I mean I've heard about the obsessive behaviour of fans, but having a go at a ladies' knitting club just because they dare to use the word Slipknot on the internet really takes the biscuit.
(I hope you appreciated the way I avoided using some groan-inducing knitting metaphor just then; you know, giving them the needle, or something of that ilk.)
Addendum: The BBC's take on the Slipknot story and on mistaken indentities on the internet.
posted by Gina Snowdoll 10:59 am
Virtually zero sleep last night!
Well, perhaps an hour, but hardly any more than that.
WAHHHHHHHH!!!! Not fair.
posted by Gina Snowdoll 8:13 am
Monday, May 06, 2002
The Die So Fluid gig at the Garage on Friday was absolutely fabulous. A big crowd had turned out - mostly to see the main act Rachel Stamp - but DSF seemed to be well appreciated, and the band were obviously really enjoying themselves up on stage. The gig had a real good vibe, and a feelgood atmosphere to it. I was right to wear make-up to this one, as the place was full of boys and girls in make-up, nailvarnish, glitter, feathers, leathers and pvc. A totally different crowd from the gnarled metallers at the Rock Fest thing a couple of months ago.
Sunday night, Annie and I decided not to go to the Comedy Store after all (would have been too expensive after Saturday) so we got a couple of videos in, a pizza and polished off a whole bottle of Jack Daniel's between us.
posted by Gina Snowdoll 7:25 pm
Off to London shortly to see Die So Fluid. I've put a little make-up on, in an effort to look slightly fabulous. Oh, and tomorrow I think I'm doing the Comedy Store, so won't be blogging again until Monday evening (most likely).
Squeak to you all later!
posted by Gina Snowdoll 3:29 pm
I again watched Later with Jools Holland on BBC2 last night. Elvis Costello was on, and despite my previous misgivings about the man (he has been, how shall we say, extremely pretentious and self-righteous in the past) I did quite enjoy the songs he performed, especially the one on which he played a twangy Danelectro baritone guitar. In contrast Mary J Bilge (misspelling fully intentional) is someone I could quite happily live the rest of my life NEVER having to hear again.
For me, the highlight of the show was the swedish band Soundtrack of Our Lives. I though they made a glorious noise, they were very energetic (with two posey guitarists), and - the real clincher for me - the lead singer was the spitting image of dear ol' Johnny Vegas! (Jools commented that he looked like Leo McKern... I think not!) Apparently the fellow in question rejoices in the name of Ebbot Lundberg... I've been trying to find a photo of him and and photo of Johnny Vegas so I can do a spot the difference thing. (I did find this photo in which he doesn't look very Vegas-like but in which he appears to be wearing red nailvarnish. So that's another point in his favour!)
posted by Gina Snowdoll 1:01 pm
Football, Rugby, Sports, and my aversion to all of these
I never liked football (or "soccer", if you will). To use a cliche, but one which I believe to be very apt, it's just a load of men running around a field kicking a ball. I have never understood how anyone can sustain any interest in such a spectacle for more than five minutes maximum. I feel similarly about most sports. I just don't get it; I don't understand how people can become so wrapped up in it. I can appreciate it from the players' point of view - even though I am not a competitive person by any means - but I can't see what's in it for the spectators.
Rugby I have a particular loathing for. It's like football, although as far as I could see, the main aim of the game is to get as muddy as possible. My Dad used to be a player (aparently a very good one, but what do I know?) and used to go on and on and on about it so much that I just wanted no part of it.
When we were kids, we used to have to go along to the rugby club with him on Saturdays. My dad would be playing, and my Mum would be involved with other players' wives in the kitchens preparing the meal for after the match. It was always meat pies and baked beans. I remember the enormous bean cans; they were so big you could most likely fashion an empty one into quite a sturdy helmet.
The rugby club was boring for us kids. We used to buy bottles of coca cola from the bar, little knowing that those glass bottles would one day be collectable, and even considered valuable! (We might have stashed a few of them away, if we'd known). We'd play - in the loosest sense of the word - on the piano, until the barman would poke his head round the door and tell us to "Shut that bloody racket up!"
Then there was a television lounge, where we'd gather to watch an afternoon movie... Until the players came in and would insist on turning it over to catch the sports news. Bastards! We were watching that! We'd get up and turn it back to the channel with the movie on, and get shouted at by neanderthal rugby-playing types. Sods! Don't mind us, we're just kids and we're bored shitless.
But the thing I hated most about going to the rugby club was the possibility that we wouldn't make it home in time to watch Doctor Who. I used to remind my Dad at regular intervals in the hour leading up to the transmission of the programme. He used to get very angry with me, and sometimes - I swear - he'd deliberately dawdle at the bar or talking to his mates just to make sure that I missed it. For I loved Doctor Who - it was the world's greatest TV show in that golden era of television. Everyone watched it. It was a national institution.
And more importantly, you needed to watch it so you could be in full possession of the facts pertaining to this week's episode for the playground discussions with the other kids at school on Monday. It was very importantly socially for a child in the 1970s to be up-to-date as regards to the good Doctor's exploits.
I hated football and sports at school too. I was never very good at it for starters; I don't think I ever scored a goal in my life. I wasn't too bad as a goal-keeper, but spent most of my time in that role telling kids from the opposition to piss off. You know, the kids that were forever hanging around the goal, hoping that the ball would come their way, and they could nip in and nudge it in the net. (Actually, there was no net, come to think of it, just the crude wooden whitewashed goalposts themselves. Sometimes you had to run miles - so it seemed - to retrieve a goal-scoring ball). These goal-hangers were the worst kind of players; they knew nothing of teamplay, of tactics, of tackling the opposing team to win the ball and to get it down to the other end of the pitch. They were just after the personal glory of scoring a goal. THESE KIDS WERE THE SCUM OF THE EARTH! This needs to be said. They were little shits, and probably later on went on to bullshit and brown-nose their way up the ranks in their chosen profession. Many's the time I have come across a bullshitting backstabber at work, and thought to myself, Yes, you were one of those goal-hanging kids back at school sports, weren't you?
Another thing about being a goalie that was bad news was that you could save four, five goals in a row, but let a single one past you and you'd get a torrent of abuse from your fellow team-mates! "You bastard!" they'd scream. And I'd be left thinking, Yeah I've done more for this team during this match than you have, Arse-face. I stopped FOUR goals! This match could have been a write-off long ago!
And I was always the last kid to be selected when the team captains were choosing their teams. Even lame little Jonathan Godfrey was chosen before me. (Think of a cross between Martin Prince and Milhouse van Houten from The Simpsons).
One team was always captained by Christopher Denny. He was the school's football-playing hero. He was amazing, apparently. He was also as thick as pigshit. He was a nice enough lad, but really, I think his head must have been full of sawdust. So, from a very early age I think I'd decided that an affinity for football equalled no brains. OK, it's another cliche, a stereotype, but there must be something in it. I mean, look at David Beckham. Not the brightest spark, is he?
I used to try to get out of sports at school, because I hated football (and later on, rugby) so much and I really loathed having to wear my Dad's hand-me-down boots that were miles too big for me. I used to pull the old "I forgot my kit" ploy. Once, after a couple of weeks in a row of using this transparent excuse, I and a few other partners in crime, were punished by being made to play sports with the girls!
Ooh! What a punishment. I don't think so! We loved playing with the girls, and their games, such as hockey and netball, were much more fun, more fast-moving.
I could reminisce (spelling?) some more on this topic, but think I'll save it for another day!
posted by Gina Snowdoll 11:29 am
All this talk of moose and sheep has got me thinking about collective nouns ("a herd of sheep", "a host of sparrows", "a murder of crows", etc) and a quick search found me this website listing actual and suggested collective nouns.
I've often wondered, what would be the collective noun for transvestites (or "trannies") or crossdressers? The site above suggests "a camp of transvestites", but I find that a bit weak, and obviously suggested by someone not in the know.
Ones that I think, speaking as a transvestite, could apply include: "a tottering of trannies"; "a handbag of trannies"; "a hosiery of trannies"; "a powder-compact of trannies"; "a bitching of trannies"; and for some reason "a squadron of trannies" seems quite appropriate (most likely because I've met so many of the "girls" who used to be in the armed forces).
However, my favourite is "a slingback of trannies".
posted by Gina Snowdoll 11:21 am
Rewriting the English Language
I still think that the plural of "moose" should be "meese".
After all, the plural of "goose" is "geese".
And other "oo" words like "tooth" to "teeth", and I can't think of any others. (Damn!)
Continuing with this same train of logic, "sheep" should be plural, but an individual ovine creature ought really to be called a "shoop".
It all makes perfect sense, believe me. Unlike the English language which is an inconsistent mess.
posted by Gina Snowdoll 10:07 am
Wednesday, May 01, 2002
What is wrong with the record industry in the UK? I can rarely find anything which I consider to be decent music in our record shops. I often have to order things specially or get CDs from internet-based outlets that stock the occasional more "obscure" items.
Today I went out at lunchtime looking for "Dust" the new CD from Peter Murphy which was supposedly released on Monday. HMV didn't have it, nor any of his other albums. Neither did Virgin or Borders. These shops only seem to stock (1) chart crap, (2) well-established classic albums (e.g. Beatles, Beach Boys), and (3) other stuff I've never heard of.
Presumably there's a 4th category called "Other stuff that Gina Snowdoll likes, and which is mightily popular in other parts of the world, say America, but we're not going to stock it, no way Jose, and don't even ask about ordering it, 'cos we'll just turn up our noses at you and say it can't be done".
I mean, bloody hell! It's Peter Murphy we're talking of in this instance. He's not exactly unknown.
So, I tried Amazon. They had the Murphy CD listed, so I placed an order and while I was about it I placed an order for the re-mastered version of Love and Rockets' first album "Seventh Dream of Teenage Heaven". And now... Now I get an email from Amazon saying these CDs are both "Usually dispatched in 1-2 weeks".
Or in other words, they haven't got them in stock.