A Scanner Darkly??

A Scanner BORING more like it. I fell asleep halfway through the boring explanations of who was what and why. After five minutes the novelty of watching an entire film that was first shot with actors and then handed it over to pre-school cartoonists to scribble on wears off. That’s like pulling your own cart and buying a horse to sit on it. Keanu Reeves does his usual “What’s going on here I don’t understand” acting (of course he was chosen because of Matrix) which makes the dull barely-human acting even less so. Woody Harrelson and Robert Downing Stupider were only cast because they are known pot- and coke-heads. A couple of funny lines about “Waaay, I’m stoned maaaan” just can’t hold up this movie.
Sci-Fi stories are generally not meant to be shot as films unless you can get it right. Just because you think the story is pushing social boundaries, and you’re pushing cinematic boundaries doesn’t necessarily mean the story and you have an iota in common.
Verdict: Another passable sci-fi story ruined by a nouvelle art director.

Shasha was talking about product sabotage. This is what the BBC says. I watched this programme, it’s called ‘Trust me, I’m an Economist’

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The Leakiest Wink

Also known as Anne Robinson.
Yesterday there was a young American rock/rapper (eh?) called Chip on, who was also pushing the bible and therefore was nauseatingly chirpy. He couldn’t answer a single question related to anything British, obviously, but the only American question asked him about Connecticut he also got wrong! Only an American would think he stood a chance with such knowledge. Annoyingly, the others were so crap that he got to the final, where he was beaten by a Scottish accountant with the personality of cream-ish wallpaper who managed to answer two of the five questions.
Which goes to show that the show has gone downhill from being a moderately poor quiz show in the beginning by quickly realising that its potential really lies in getting stupid people on so Anne can look smart in comparison. Why they take any stick from her is beyond me!
Insulting television is on the up, isn’t it TrinnyandSusanna?

Ioannis asked about the video membership Shasha has joined.
The shop is in Rusholme, opposite Sangam’s. It’s called 24-Hour Self Video, which I thought meant anybody desperate to video themselves in the wee hours of the morning or during lunch break needn’t wait. No, it’s a self-service, fully automated dvd, vhs and something-else-I-can’t-remember rental shop. You pay at rates of 6 hour, 12 hour or 24 hour, so it works out cheap for people who live above it. Here’s a review of it in Itchy Manchester, which says pretty much what I’ve told you.

An quote

Quote of the day from Dr. Cox in Scrubs. He’s got many good ones, but this caught my, ahem, eye.

Sex is like squash; you work hard for half-an-hour, work up a sweat, and try not to get hit in the eye.

Of course, he said ‘racket-ball’, not ‘squash’.

David Attenborough was on all day yesterday with ‘Life in the Undergrowth’. Apparently hermaphrodite Leopard Slugs screw each other in the head while hanging upside-down. Brilliant!
Seen a lot of movies recently, Yesterday saw ‘Bellevue Rendezvous’ at the Cornerhouse with Sha. Sha has a new membership deal with a video shop, which means she MUST watch two films a day, and I’m trying to help 🙂

Finish Gillette / Redemption Ark

Another gripe. I have previously mentioned my wonderment at how far companies will go to claim superiority over their competitors. I started shaving with a twin-bladed razor, which was the best a man could get in those days. I was eventually persuaded to add another blade, so I’m on three now. So far David Beckham hasn’t persuaded me to switch to four. But now someone’s got out a FIVE-bladed razor, so clearly the foolishness of this all is only apparent to the general public and not to the big bosses at Gillette! Wilkinson took a while before they caught up with the four-blade-upgrade; I suspected it was more due to their reluctance to appear to be chasing Gillette than any real technical difficulty involved. Will they go to five? I suppose they will, the logic being that stupid people are being convinced that more is better. Hence the similar Finish detergent with three four FIVE active ingredients getting their back bent out of shape in all sorts of odd postitions in order to clean your dishes.
I am reading one of the most fascinating sci-fi books in a looong time (That’s not “looong” with the ‘o’ as in ‘spoon’, but with the ‘o’ as in ‘thong’, only prolooonged). Alastair Reynolds’ ‘Redemption Ark’ won the British Science Fiction award, and I can see why. It’s a massive 650-page tome with size 2 font, and I’m only into page 20 so far, but it’s gripped me by the gonads. Hence the high-pitched typing. Already there’s been wars, and alien invasions, and mind augmentations. I’m looking forward to a bit of human-alien action next, know what I mean?

Might go watch A Scanner Darkly at the Cornerhouse today. 18:25 or 20:40.

Murder most foul

Watching an American programme about the “World’s Deadliest Animals” (95% of which were American wildlife because what’s the point in scaring people with something that lives far away) I heard this most incredibly articulate wildlife expert and his well-expressed opinion that:-

“Prevention is the best method of not getting stung by a scorpion”

Which brings up the old argument. As a tool of communication, such language manages to get its message across not by content alone, but (arguably mainly) by context. Therefore it is doing its job used in the medium it was employed, the spoken word. But it just annoys me when people dem doan speak propah.

Another blow for the Kazi Siblings

My sister didn’t make the drum school auditions; so there’s more bad news for the Kazi Siblings. In true KS fashion, she was out celebrating her visit to London by going to the Proms and dining out, trying to push the knowledge of defeat into a box in the dark recesses of her mind where she can then lock it tight so it never resurfaces. It works like a charm for us!
I was expecting some cash today to plough back into my debit account that’s been in the red (and therefore costing me £50 a month in charges) ever since Homo Habilis turned wanderer and left the savannas of Africa following game northwards. Of course, as I log in to my bank account for the umpteenth time (with a pop up specially designed for me by the whiz boys at SH-BC bank that says “What? Back already”) I see that there has been no relieving of my dough-related doldrums.
I have to make a trip to Old Trafford today, hoping that it’s worth the hassle. Had a hell of a time trying to answer questions for a particularly nosey company. “How do I know what I’m good at if I’ve never done anything in my life?” I tell them. I figure honesty must count for something, right?

15 August 1947

..was the day India threw off the shackles of British rule and became independent. India was now able to make its own mistakes without foreign interference. Now that it had British electricity networks, railways and other trifling stuff.
Anyhoo, my sister’s now in London, she’s played her auditions yesterday, so we all shall keep our fingers crossed. She has to beat 14 other hopefuls for a scholarship, and by her own admission she didn’t do the music-reading part of the test very well, so we’ll have to hope for a miracle. That, or we’ll have to sabotage the other 14 with food poisoning like (apparently, allegedly, supposedly, according to Bob) Arsenal did to Tottenham in May in order to gain fourth place.
I (along with some friends including Yannis Aivalakis from London) will be taking a look tomorrow at the first game England will play under new manager Steve McLaren against Greece, and Ioannis is having a house-heating party on Thursday now that the shelves are up (I don’t know if he’s got a sofa yet). It’s funny how ordinarily, upon walking into a new house with shelves on the wall, one would not hesitate to lean against them bringing one’s full weight to bear upon them. But having drilled the holes ourselves, and having screwed the brackets in ourselves, we are treating the shelves with considerably more delicacy.

Trouble

Trouble by Ray LaMontagne

Trouble…
Trouble, trouble, trouble, trouble
Trouble been doggin’ my soul since the day I was born
Worry…
Worry, worry, worry, worry
Worry just will not seem to leave my mind alone
We’ll I’ve been…
saved by a woman
I’ve been…
saved by a woman
I’ve been…
saved by a woman
She won’t let me go
She won’t let me go now
She won’t let me go
She won’t let me go now

Trouble…
Oh, trouble, trouble, trouble, trouble
Feels like every time I get back on my feet
she come around and knock me down again
Worry…
Oh, worry, worry, worry, worry
Sometimes I swear it feels like this worry is my only friend
We’ll I’ve been saved…
by a woman
I’ve been saved…
by a woman
I’ve been saved…
by a woman
She won’t let me go
She won’t let me go now
She won’t let me go
She won’t let me go now

Oh…, Ahhhh….
Ohhhh
She good to me now
She gave me love and affection
She good tell me now
She gave me love and affection
I Said I love her
Yes I love her
I said I love her
I said I love…
She good to me now
She’s good to me
She’s good to me

Need I say more?

Gardening / Living with a Curse II – Turn In The Road

I rented a DVD about gardening from the library on Friday, hoping to get some good viewing on trailing bougainvilleas and positively pristine petunias over the weekend. The DVD was labelled ‘Constant Gardening’ or something, which I supposed alluded to the fact that gardening is an all-season activity and that, even in winter, there are things that need to be done around the garden. Imagine my surprise when I saw that it had nothing to do with gardening whatsoever (except for some shots of lovely nasturtiums) but some sick people in Africa and a drug called Dypraxa! Whatever!!
Living With A Curse continues as I failed my driving test again, this time with TWO serious errors. This, my avid readers will note, is one more than last time, leading to all kinds of projections of doom for my forthcoming attempts. I managed to get a serious fault while turning in the road, because apparently this car came and stopped while I was turning around, and I should’ve spent the rest of my fast-fading life waiting for him to do something. In fact, she (yes, once again I’m lumped with an anal bitch) had this half-tonne of an Inspector in the back marking her performance, so I was doomed from the start. She was bound to prove her vigilance and high standards by failing me. And why do I always have to get fat people in the car!! Atleast I didn’t get any hesitation points this time – I was wellying the accelerator all the way. Of course, the second serious fault was for emerging from a side road into a main road, because apparently in real life people just either sit there till there’s an earthquake that stops the trafiic flow, or get out and push their car round the corner carefully!! You’ve got to spot the gap and make a move, or did I learn nothing from all the accidents I’ve had??

Good boy!! Here’s a biccie

As usual spent all day browsing and now have to cram all my thoughts into ten minutes of a blog. Anyway, we’ve all booked tickets to watch England play Greece in a friendly at Old Trafford, the 16th of August at 19:45 for those who don’t know. We’ll be sitting with the In-gerrr-land fans, of course, and making fun of Greek names like Hapa-hapalous and whatnot.
Ioannis moves on Friday, we’ll get to sniff around his new house (I just remembered taking my dog Suzy to new places and how she had to investigate every corner before squatting in one and letting flow. I’ll be doing pretty much the same then).
Applied to some jobs that I didn’t even want, not that there’s any risk I’m gonna get offered them. Not looking fwd to weekend with no money in my pocket, but I managed to coerce Ioannis into free driving lessons for Sunday, so I’ll be ready (in a very vague sense of the term) come Monday.