Thursday, October 30, 2008
But do you remember last week? Kerry Katona appeared drunk on This Morning. So this scandal this week is just able to sell inches to the very people who use the red tops to pin their opinions into neatly folded Yes or No to the two being sacked, in the same way last week many people shook their head in disapproval without knowing anything about the situation.
So has this scandal been blown out of proportion? Yes - only 2 people complained when the show went out and now 25'000 bandwagon jumpers, who wouldn't have heard of the piece or wouldn't have even considered listening to the Brand show on BBC Radio 2. Even after the event it took days for anyone to even notice - and now, after the media picked it up, saw the potential, and the excitement that it would create in the papers, it really is incredible that now it is the main news item.
But, I suppose, the whole Credit Crunch schtick is getting old, Kerry Katona might actually be very ill, and the other tabloid cross hairs have been left off Jade Goody after she picked up the big C, they need something else to sell the useless, outdated toilet paper of the tabloids. So, will this blow over? Yeah - Brand will work on Channel 4, Ross, even if he is sacked (unlikely, when he draws million of viewers to a slot that could be a total fail in anybody elses hands) he will not need to work, producing a couple of books, hobnobbing with his mates, and getting a column in the Times/Guardian/Independent in a few years.
Everyone calm down - indeed, Jamie Theakston made a good point (how can I write that with a straight face?) - "People who watched Manuel are not the audience for Russel Brand and don't get it; and those who know Russell Brand might not even know who Manuel is! It has been blown out of proportion."
Yes, it has. Rossellgate won't go away anytime soon. Not until next week, with the US election anyway.
Wednesday, October 22, 2008
Or it would be if the channels were worth watching, the programmes worth investing time in. Indeed, in this day and age, the only things I watch on the telly are my news channel whilst eating my breakfast, the Simpsons and Hollyoaks 9both interminable for different reason) whilst eating my dinner, and Match of the Day at the weekend. I am addicted to Heroes, but as this is the first year that the BBC Two syndication of the show has followed the American showing ,it can barely be counted as I have many copies of it on my Hard Drive.
So why do I have to pay £139.50 a year for something that I get so little gain from? Well, there – you got me. Indeed, inspecting the intricacies of the law, it appears that I can indeed not pay it, having to give up my ability to receive Televisual programming through the set. Not just BBC services – which is where it starts to not make any sense what so ever.
Basically the license fee pays for BBC programming. But is also pays for the Radio services. So, whilst I don’t need a license to listen to the radio, I do have to pay for the TV and if I don’t watch listen to the Radio I am still paying for it. This is a little confusing. There did use to be a Radio license, but it was stopped a while ago… and also my fee pays for the internet sites – which, I do use and would rank at the top of the BBC mediums that I do use.
In a rather bizarre twist, according to text from the BBC,“If you are only watching on-demand services, after programmes have already been broadcast, you will not need a TV licence” which is the strat down some sort of slippery slope – as all the while the BBC are advertising this new iPlayer service and the money spent into auto converting the formats for the iPod, PC and Mac, it turns out if I really wanted to stop paying for the license fee I could indeed keep up to date with all my shows via the worth while medium of Channel 4 On Demand and BBC’s iPlayer. (I never watch anything on ITV and Channel 5).
So, what is the point in it? Seriously, surely we can now, with there only being 8 channels without “adverts” (paid for adverts, the BBC show adverts for their own shows as much as ITV have adverts for all manner of consumer goods) why do we persist in paying for this antiquated system?
I don’t know. But I do know that in this world of free, where music, movies, popular opinion and goods can be sought for little to nothing, the age of subscription services might be coming to an end. I hated paying BT for a telephone line that I never use, so why do I put up with paying the BBC for a license to own something I already have paid for?
Thursday, October 16, 2008
Can't wait to buy womens tights.
Wednesday, October 15, 2008
Indeed, my costume is obscure. It will require a length explanation. But, if it works, it will be intense and really striking. So here is the rump:
I am going to go as Rorschach from Watchmen.
So, how will I make it. Well, I have the Trenchcoat. I bought a tan, lengthy trench coat from eBay early this month for the unsubstantial £21. This actually looks pretty amazing, though I am under strict instructions not to even consider wearing it anywhere else other than late October 31st.
I am now looking for the pinstripe trousers. Indeed, I found a pair of trousers in Topman that looked that part, and will serve me well for going to work too. These will be purchased at the weekend.
I am also looking for a piece de la résistance, the fedora. Instructed that H&M might be a good shout, I shall send my minions to work on the shops in Glasgow. Failing that, a good look at eBay tells me that for a good one it is £50 (which is way out my budget) and an okay one is £15-25 which I can stretch to.
But I think the costume will be made or broken by the mask. The concept behind the mask in the comic book* is that it is two pieces of film, in which a oily substances is free to move around, making the mask change it’s look all the time – effectively like a screen saver on the face of the character. This is unfortunately, impossible. But what I can do is create a shape in the style of the ink blot test and put it on my face. Currently my idea is to use white tights and fabric paint. This weekend I will be creating my first version of the mask by acting all nonchalant and buying a couple of pairs of white tights in a ladies department and some black fabric paint from somewhere in Aberdeen and going all arts and crafts.
So, the count down begins. With 16 days left I really need to find the Fedora and get it mailed out. I am looking for a Friday confirmation and purchase, delivered by next weekend. The minor details, such as the sugar cubes and leather gloves, should be easy to capture closer to the date.
Thursday, October 09, 2008
My afflication with glasses only started to really affect me when I went to Ineos at Grangemouth for placement. Sitting at the computer for hours a day and then driving 40 miles home was playing havoc with my eyes. I was getting head aches, pains, blurred vision, and to top it all off, I was hving to face the prospect of having to go and get glasses. So, I did.
I went to an optician to get my eyes looked at. After a few tests, she quizzically looked at me and said “Were you University today?” I replied “Why yes, my glass dispensing minx” to which she heartily laughed, smacked my bottom and told me to come back in the morning to compare tests.
Interestingly (for me) my morning test was better. This meant one thing – I am lazy. Well, my eyes are. Basically, I have what the woman called a near point of convergence and a lack of ability to switch from close focusing and long focusing. What this means is that at close quarters my eyes fail to adjust and it hurts my head. So, to counter this I had to get a pair of glasses.
The horror. I had to choose frames, get them made, pay for them… well, not exactly. Being a cheap student I was referred to the Caledonian University Eye Clinic, and was paraded in front of attractive optical students and old smelly lecturers as a good example of a “hard to diagnose case”. The exercises they gave me were tiresome, and the glasses we off the shelf. Bloody terrible.
So, I put up with them. They sorted the problem of sore heads but gave me a worse problem. The more I wore them the worse my general eyesight became and the worse my general eyesight became I wore them more. What I call the CIRCLE OF FAIL.
My New Glasses. Kind of.
I bought new glasses last week. I like them. They are great to wear as I can see. The are the right size for my head, which is nice. The also look amazing in my opinion. Hazel is less enthusiastic about them. Other are more enthusiastic about them. Some outright like them. I know which ones I am siding with.
Wednesday, October 08, 2008
I have befriended an American. In fact, I have befriended two, both through the immaculate place that is my place of work, and these newly formed friendships have been great fun so far – the little differences between the countries forming the majority of the topics of conversation between myself at the two persons (one of which has her own blog, which you can read by clicking over there -> and she now owes me a tenner for advertising. The reason that this has been so amusing is that we are remarkably different in culture considering that we both come from the same place, this island, and that there hasn’t been that long a period since we were once betrothed in a unholy marriage.
That particular agreement didn’t end well – indeed, they still celebrate it to this day in lavish fireworks laden ceremonies. I wonder why we don’t celebrate the “Offloading Day” over here… in anycase, it is surprising to note that the difference go further than the accent and the way that we live.
It is noticed by myself that the new recruits to the Kingdom are very friendly – overtly so, so much so that in England they might be out of place. I have noticed a tendency to over talk to staff members in shops, which might frighten most of the people on the otherside of the counter. I remember being surprised when idle chit-chat was started out of the blue by a customer when I worked in retail, forgetting that not everyone was a business like as I am when it comes to transactions of a monetary nature.
Indeed, other differences are apparent too – when one of the new peeps started he had just came over from Houston, where they had been hit by Hurricane Ike. Yeah, it was not as bad as Katrina, and didn’t happen to millions of poverty stricken black people, so the devastation was not reported as wildly. Also, the American government, wary of an Epic Fail again, went all out (similar to the previous weeks evacuation of New Orleans, a flexing of muscle to prove that, yeah, we can do it, but we fucked up last time). He was remarkably calm, telling stories of the people who didn’t leave their houses and were no longer there – their houses gone and destroyed.
I remember a couple of months ago we had “floods” that were “devastating”. If I remember correctly, 3 people died in total, and the “devastation” was centred on property that, on the face of it, was still standing. I mean, come on Britain! We wouldn’t know how to survive a hurricane (indeed, this is where I point out that us to have a “hurricane” is impossible, being located specifically in the tropical climes of the Gulf of Mexico, not the Atlantic Ocean to the west of Scotland and the wonderful England.
Other differences, such as the way we speak gave me another question that I don’t know how to answer. Why do they have a different accent? Also, why do Australians have a different accent? Boht countries are less than 300 years old in their present state, our emigration and convicts being shipped over in their thousands being British to start with. This is something I was wondering – maybe our accents have changed too? I can’t think that 300 years ago I would’ve been speaking in the same style that I am right now – speech and writing has changed dramatically, so maybe accents have too? Maybe we all have changed drastically… though I also note these regional accents are different, and that might be another door.
There are other things that are the same by name, like McDonalds or Subway. The burgers are smaller over here but of better quality beef, which is not surprising. The Big Mac is also quite different – whether or not it is massively different I can’t remember (I had my first Big Mac in Florida if memory serves me correct). I suppose that is to be expected, the proliferation of American stores over here limited to food. We pride our selves on the Morrisons and Tesco’s of the Kingdom (the less said about Walmart owned Asda the better).
"Here in America we are descended in blood and in spirit from revolutionists and rebels - men and women who dare to dissent from accepted doctrine. As their heirs, may we never confuse honest dissent with disloyal subversion." Dwight David Eisenhower