Tuesday, July 31, 2007


More than a week since my last entry is a poor effort but in my defence I was in London for a good part of last week - and an interesting time it was too. I've mainly been just freelancing and applying for jobs.

I finished The God Delusion by Richard Dawkins which I really enjoyed but must be honest and say the whole Harry Potter saga held little interest for me: it's meant to be cool to like HP, at any age, but the guy sat next to me on the train who had taken it out of its cover obviously didn't think so.

I saw The Simpsons movie on Sunday and thought it was great. Having been long claiming it's a series that could have been possibly THE greatest TV show ever had it not been for the noticeable and sad decline in quality to a low standard, I thought the movie really alleyed the fears I had it would be the final nail in the coffin. Bart's naked skateboarding scene is hilarious.

I also saw a trailer for the first part of the The Dark Materials trilogy which looked pretty amazing. Hopefully it will do a Lord of the Rings and become a great winter movie trilogy which tells a great story well - and I hope they don't change the content and message for American audiences (those who have read it will know what I mean): Watch Below:

Monday, July 23, 2007

New Technologies Opening Avenues

This idea of having videos submitted to ask questions to candidates in elections is a fascinating idea into the new ways the web can and is affecting the political arena. It's very easy to mock or ignore Dave Cameron's web cast, or even Ann Widdicombe's, but at least they are acknowledging that these forms of communication are out there and are what millions of average people are using - for many reasons - day in, day out.

And surely in the future when my generation, or the generation just above ours, have become the leaders of this country we will want them to be technological savvy? To demonstrate they are intelligent, capable people who grew up understanding and participating in the technological advancements of the 2000s? I know I would much rather a prime minister who knew how to access his email or work a mobile phone in 20 years time than one who didn't.

And does this mean in 20 years time the prime minister will have an ancient Facebook account full of (potential embarrassing) photos and videos? Or will his spin doctor have ensured it was deleted a long time ago? I'd like to think the former...

Friday, July 20, 2007

Public Enemy #1

As a resident of Cornwall - have I mentioned that before? - I am fully aware of the problem of seagulls. This news story - which shows that a seagull has started stealing crisps from a shop in Scotland -seems to suggest those interviewed find the seagull an interesting novelty. Well I think it's just the next stage in seagulls evolution into rabid killers. Daphne Du Maurier, a Cornish gal, probably wrote The Birds as a warning to us.

In St Ives there are warning signs to mind your food as seagulls have been known to swoop down and take it. If they nest in your house you can expect to be bombarded if you walk to close as they think you are after their young - and yet trying to exterminate the pest often results in being reported to the police / animal services by some nosey moron. And while we are at it, let's kill wasps too. They serve no purpose and did we really evolve for 4.6 billion years to the top of the food chain just to let some black and yellow stripy bastard ruin an outdoor pint or picnic?

How unoriginal to call the seagull 'Sam'. Steven would have been better. Steven Seagull, menace to society.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

News - it just keeps on coming

Watching the Alistair Campbell Diaries on BBC2 the thing that struck me most (aside from the incessant 'epic' sounding violin music), was just how much goes on in the world. This does sound a tad ridiculous from a journalism student, but when you look again at everything that happens you wonder how the world is still going: Foot and Mouth, the fuel crisis, Ron Davies and a mad moment, The NI peace process, Bill Clinton's affair, Kosovo bombing by NATO, Cherie giving birth to Leo, John Prescott punching a member of the electorate...and this was just in one of three shows covering the Blair tenure.

Apparently John Prescott (or" JP" as Campbell referred to him - which I kept thinking was Jacket Potato...join the dots) - said it was ridiculous he should have to apologise for retaliating after being hit in the face with an egg from one yard. I think he is right. Just because you are a politician doesn't mean you are not a human being - and it doesn't give people the right to attack you, physically, without fear of reprisal.

I am aware of the irony of this given what newspapers inflict upon politicians on a daily (mail) basis. A point nicely illustrated in tonight's show when Campbell highlighted that TB (Tony Blair) went out with a mug in his hand after the birth of Leo, still not understanding just how the media would jump on any little thing he did - and then turn it into a "PR" decision by Campbell.

Queen Rhaps BBC

The BBC looked really f*cking stupid today after having to apologise to the Queen after they portrayed her as having a strop during a photo shoot - which wasn't true. I simply cannot begin to understand how the edit which implied she had stormed out got from the first stage of editing in a cutting room somewhere to being shown to journalists from national newspapers. I mean seriously, did no-one at any point realise what people would think from the video? Heads will roll, heads will roll.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

What are they feeding him?

I think they might be giving this dog too much respect - the headline is slightly sensationalist . But then again I wouldn't want to get on the wrong side of it.

Sunday, July 08, 2007

Black Eyed Pees (too easy really)

I should point out this is an old story I stumbled across. I don't think it's current.


It must have been hard for Fergie's PR people to find a way out of the (rather damp and warm) situation she got herself into, if the news that she wet herself at a gig is true - and the pictures would suggest it is. You can't call it a wardrobe malfunction but a 'body malfunction' maybe? Implies she doesn't have control of her own 'needs' though which could mean they have to put her in some sort of home. Or maybe the backstage toilets were just so revolting she would rather be laughed at world wide? Probably not. As it turns out her PR people have claimed it was just sweat. Ahh, yes. Very unusual place for such a distinct sweat pattern, especially as the rest of her is so, er, not wet. She should have worn black though so people's eyes wouldn't have seen the pee. See what I did there?


To make it "news" - wasn't Live Earth a bit rubbish. Musicians shouting about, "making a difference" and "saving the world" is always embarrasing. I thought Kasabian were suprisingly good though.

Friday, July 06, 2007


So Charles Kennedy was caught smoking on a train? A great story that could only have been made funnier (and into a tabloid headline writer's dream) if it had been Kennedy's predecessor who had been caught...

Spicing Things Up

So the Spice Girls are returning to the musical scene. And with Take That (sans Robbie) also returning to the air waves it really does seem as if we are back in the mid 90s.

It’s a bit sad that these groups reform, both for them as entertainers – who have clearly never been able to repeat the success they once had so have to return to their original roots – and it’s sad that we, the 'great' British public, are strange enough to want them back.

The record executives know our misplaced (and probably non-existent) nostalgia for the likes of ‘Sporty’ or ‘Ginger’ will lead us to head for the nearest supermarket and part with our well earned cash. So please, let’s make a stand, and not give in to this shameless cashing in on a product we already turned our backs on once before.

Sunday, July 01, 2007

Number Crunching

I was in London for a job interview the other day and afterwards I went for a wander around the Tate Modern which had a very interesting exhibition about cities around our planet. The best statistic that was on display was this:

"Sao Paulo has a tube network 40km² for 18 million people, while London has a tube network of 140km² which serves 8 million people" - which is pretty staggering if you think about it.