Friday, February 22, 2008

Heaven and Hell

This is not a post about theology.

I’ve been invited to a party with a Heaven and Hell theme. Actually, that isn’t strictly true. I was invited to a party, I accepted the invitation and then today, I was informed that it has a Heaven and Hell theme.

I haven’t been to a fancy dress party in ages. I think the last themed party I went to was a Hawaiian themed New Year’s Eve party quite a few years ago, which ended up resembling the last days of Rome in terms of debauchery, except with Hawaiian shirts, grass skirts and tropical punch.

It seems rude to go and not get into the spirit of things, but I can’t think of anything to go as other than an angel or a devil. Of those I would probably go with the angel option, mainly because I think I look better in all white than in all red. Good would win over evil on a purely aesthetic basis.

I’ve already got a white dress hanging unworn in my wardrobe and my sister has already offered to send me a halo and a set of wings in the post. This is very much her sort of thing – fancy dress, that is, not heavenly bodies.

But, ideally I’d like to think of something more interesting. But I can’t. So instead I would like someone else to think of something more interesting for me to go as. Any suggestions?

I considered going as Norse god Thor, which would probably just consist of taking a hammer with me. I thought about going as fire, but can’t think how that would work.

Friday, February 15, 2008

33 Hour Party People

A few weeks ago, Kate Moss turned 34 and celebrated with an attempted 34 hour party. Tomorrow I turn 33, so I was wondering about doing something similar.

However, Miss Moss failed to do 34 hours (apparently she and her entourage managed 25 hours), and I am somewhat more of a lightweight than her. Instead I was going to write a post about my imagined 33 hour party, but even in my imagination I couldn’t stand the pace, and the 33 hours were dominated sleep and carrot cake.

Back in the real world, my “party” will consist of going to the cinema to see “There Will Be Blood” (which at nearly 3 hours long will take up a good proportion of my waking hours), having a drink in a pub, followed by a meal with a group of friends, then probably a couple more drinks in another pub. There should hopefully also be some carrot cake and sleep thrown in for good measure.

It doesn’t sound the most exciting plan ever, but really that will do for me now. I must be getting old.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

The lonely woman searches for the dream

I've just received an email with the above title.

Below is the rather poetic message:

My name is Galeeva Julia.
I to look a structure at a site. You to interest me as the man.
To me to want it is more to know about you.
Now it is
very difficult to find the person whom to begin the present friend.
Not speaking about the man to go a life together.
And consequently I have decided to write to you the letter.
It is a little to write about itself.
To me of 30 years old, single.
As To love sports, I do not smoke.
My friends speak about me that I very
interesting person and they very much like to communicate with me.
To not know what to write about itself.
If to you to become interesting, you to write to me the letter.
I to answer you it is more about myself. Mine mail:, there I can show more
photo from mine a life and tell about myself.
I shall wait very much your
Bye bye.

If I thought I could offer her what she is looking for, I would reply as she has a lovely way with words, don't you think. If you read it out loud, it could be poetry. I didn't look at the attached picture though for fear it would infect my computer or offend my delicate sensibilities.

The Card I Won't Be Buying

I may have been in a popular card retailers this lunchtime, where I might have been browsing the Valentine cards.

The selection of cards were the pretty much the standard offerings, but then I came across one printed with the words

"You are the Strawberries and Cream of my Desire"

It was illustrated with an insipid drawing of strawberries and cream.

Something about this sentiment just made me think "yuck". Is that really the best people can come up with?

I actually quite like strawberries and a little bit of cream but I still wouldn't want to receive this card. The OH can't stand either though so if I were to receive this, it wouldn't be a good sign. I don't think they'd sell many cards with his preference : "You are the mature cheddar of my desire".

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Pretty Vacant

We watched "Factory Girl" on DVD last night. I have more than a passing interest in the 1960s, love the Velvet Underground and don't mind a bit of Warhol now and then, so I thought it might be interesting. It wasn't.

How such an interesting time with so many iconic characters could result in such a dull film is quite remarkable. The film was supposed to be the real girl behind the image of Edie Sedgwick, but on the basis of this, there really wasn't much behind the image. Her father abused her as a child and one of her brothers was killed in an accident but nothing more is offered about he as person. She was then, allegedly, exploited by both Warhol and Dylan. I say allegedly because the film caused outrage in both camps, with Warhol's estate insisting she was not cut off by him and had already left his entourage of her own accord and Dylan tried to have the whole project blocked. Then this film comes along and exploits her image in much the same way.

The Dylan bit was actually hilarious - unintentionally I should imagine. To get around the legal problems with Dylan being unhappy at being accused of causing the downfall of someone he claims to have barely known, the filmmakers could not call the obviously-Dylan character, Bob Dylan. Instead, they made this unnamed musican as Dylan-like as possible - he entered with a harmonica around his neck and spoke in the same way that Dylan sings (I'm pretty sure Dylan does not speak in the same way he sings) which had us laughing everytime he came on screen. Lou Reed was apparently also appauled when he read the script although this may have been as much to do with someone from Weezer playing him.

This is the first thing I've seen Sienna Miller in other than gossip columns (or when I saw her in real life) and she is nominated for a BAFTA at tonight's awards. So how was she? She wasn't bad at all. She was ok. But then she was playing a pretty rich girl who wants to be famous and respected, but is best known for who she hangs around with and what clothes she wears. So not much of a stretch there really. And at times it did feel like the purpose of the whole film was just an excuse for her to wear lots of pretty clothes. But on a positive note, the clothes were very very nice.

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Soaked to the Bone

Coming home from the pool last night, I was caught in the rain. It was a torrential downpour, it was raining cats and dogs, the heavens had opened, it was bucketing, tipping and p***ing down, and any other expressions to denote that it was very very wet.

I lurked in the leisure centre hallway for a few minutes, hoping it might stop, but then I was worried that the nearby canal might break its banks so thought I'd better move on before it flooded and I was stranded.

As I drudged along in the rain, the song ‘The Rain’ by Missy Elliot came on my ipod (I’m not usually a fan of her but I think this must be on some compilation). On hearing this, I wished that I’d had the forethought to compile a rain-related playlist for such an occasion.

So I’m putting one together now and when I get my new ipod which will have plenty of space for such frivolity I will put it together for future use:

  • Rain – The Beatles
  • Dry the Rain – The Beta Band
  • Wash in the Rain – The Bees
  • Happy When It Rains – Jesus and Mary Chain
  • Purple Rain – Stina Nordenstam’s version of the Prince song
  • Rainy Day Women #12 & 35 – Bob Dylan (even though it doesn’t mention rain in the lyrics)
  • Raintown – Deacon Blue (credibility thrown out of the window now!)
  • Sunshine on a Rainy Day – Zoe (I don’t own this but it reminds me of being 15)
  • Rain or Shine – Five Star (ok, I don’t own this but it fits the theme and Five Star were our band of choice for making up dance routines when I was 10)

It will not feature Travis “Why Does It Always Rain on Me” (too wet even for a rain compilation) or any version of “Its Raining Men” (its not a hen night compilation). Any other suggestions?

By the time I'd trudged home, my trousers were so heavy, that I'm convinced that gave me a better workout than the pool had.

Monday, February 04, 2008

Backing the Losing Side

The OH loves the Super Bowl. He’s not American but its sport and he never can have too much sport. So for the past few years we’ve attempted to have our own Super Bowl party. This has usually consisted of us getting in the beers, chips and dips and me promptly falling asleep minutes after the national anthem has been sung.

But last night was different. Last night, I managed to stay awake for quite a bit of the game and to see the thrilling decisive minutes. So what was different about it this year? It wasn’t just the promise of Tom Petty at half time. This year my team were in the game.

That’s right. I have an American football team. I support the New England Patriots.

I have no ties to the area at all (the American Sanddancers are in Atlantic City). I’ve never been there, but I have supported them since 1986. Admittedly, this support has been limited to watching the highlights of one Super Bowl back in 1986, telling the bemused OH that I supported them and watching the game last night. There hasn’t been much actually week by week support.

I used to watch the American Football on Channel 4 back in the 80s with my Dad. I never understood the game. I only watched it because my Dad watched it and because I was reading the Sweet Valley High books so was interested in American culture. My Dad in turn only really watched it because one of his good friends, Len Shackleton, loved American Football (I’m name dropping again here – Len Shackleton was a footballing legend of the post-war years, so there probably aren’t many people alive still who remember him playing and he was one of my Dad’s cronies - its rather odd finding a Wikipedia entry for someone who was a family friend).

So we both used to watch it on television and me, being me, even at the age of 11, decided to support the underdog in that year’s Super Bowl, which was the New England Patriots. They lost.

Last night, they weren’t the underdogs. Last night they were very much the favourites, being undefeated in the season so far, and would have made history if they won this game. They lost.

Friday, February 01, 2008

Riding the Tube with Bobby G

People who don’t live in London often ask me if I see lots of celebrities around London, and I really don’t tend to. This may be because a) my eyesight isn’t very good, and b) I often struggle to recognise people outside of context in which I know them (for example I once walked past my own mother on the high street, obviously I didn’t recognise her outside of the confine of our house). It also might be down to the fact that I don’t really frequent the sort of places that the rich frequent.

But this morning, I saw Bobby Gillespie on the tube! Actually, the OH saw Bobby Gillespie and I initially doubted him. Unlike me he is often mistaking people for celebrities like the time he was convinced football managers Gerard Houllier and Sven Goran Eriksson were having a pint together in our local – they weren’t. But it turned out he was right. And he (Bobby G that is, not the OH) was getting off at the same stop as me! Fancy that.

I realise that Bobby Gillespie is hardly A list celebrity, but in my world, he is, having been in two of my all time favourite bands and I have described him as my ideal man on several occasions. So it was nice to start the day seeing him in the flesh - he looked ghostly white, knackered and was wearing dubious pointy shoes, but I still would have done it with him there on the concourse if he'd asked.

But I must admit I was surprised to see him on a crowded tube train at 8.30 in the morning. Surely he can afford a cab? According to some tabloid or other (as the OH informed me later) he was out partying with Kate Moss last (Bobby G again, not the OH) and was spotted leaving her place at 5am.

That still leaves quite a few hours unaccounted for though, unless he really struggled to work the ticket machine.