August 1, 2000
[pitts] William Reith talks about the Pitt’s wedding photo. ‘This – the luxury, the security, the plunder and price of fame – is what the picture is trying to negate. It’s trying to negate the barrage balloons, the guards outside the wedding compound talking into their radios, the prison vans. It might as well be a photograph of a politician and his wife. It is spin. Here is a couple who want to pretend they are just like you and me. They know the price of milk. Knowing that we would not like them if we saw them represented by more conventional images, they have given us a more likable version of themselves. And they think they’ve taken us in!’
[weblogs] Cool Beans…. The Haddock Directory is back.
[maggots! eating my flesh!!] newsUnlimited covers larval therapy. ‘A paper released last week from specialists at West Cumberland hospital in Cumbria could make them think again. Twelve patients with serious, “sloughy” leg ulcers took part in the study; six of them were treated with conventional hydrogel therapy, six with larval therapy (a more reassuring term for maggots). After one application of maggots, left in the wound for three days, all six of these patients were left with clean wounds. Of the others, only two had clean wounds after a month of treatment, with the other four needing further medical attention.’
August 2, 2000
[comics] upcomingmovies and comics2film cover Alan Moore and Eddie Campbell’s From Hell. ‘Inspired by “Jack the Ripper: The Final Solution” by the late Stephen Knight, “From Hell” suggests that Prince Albert “Eddy” Victor had fathered an illegitimate child, and when four Whitechapel prostitutes attempted to exploit this information, they were executed (the fifth victim was allegedly a case of mistaken identity). Complicit parties include Scotland Yard, the Freemasons and Victoria herself, while such London notables as Oscar Wilde and John “Elephant Man” Merrick make cameo appearances.’
[war] The Man Who Dropped The Bomb — Newsweek interviews Paul Tibbets who dropped the atomic bomb on Hiroshima fifty-five years ago … ‘Oftentimes, in Tibbets presence, I would see men and women in their seventies and eighties come up to him (once they figured out who he was) with tears in their eyes, to thank him for letting them live full lives. The men had been young American soldiers on their way to a land invasion of Japan. Because of what Tibbets did, they came home instead, and raised their families. They cry now, when they meet him.’
[gonzo] Hunter S. Thompson shoots assistant whilst chasing bear off his property. Here’s a link to the Guardian’s Passnote on the matter. ‘”First, never hesitate to use force, and second, abuse your credit card for all its worth.” (Thompson’s rules for a good life.)’
[weblogs] Amusingly written weblog — torrez.orgWhile I’ll be a really bad father and The Evolution of a Weblogger in the Year 2000 ‘The reason, of course, is that I’ve been that typical male. I’ve talked my way into their beds while their parents slept, blissfully unaware that that Torrez kid, the one who was on his way to Berkeley as a computer science major, had 20 megs of porn on his hard drive (note: this was back when both porn and hard drives were rather small. 20 megs translates to roughly 93.3 gigabytes today). That Torrez kid was not too drunk to drive, nor was he about to have surgery, nor was his penis going to fall off if it didn’t receive its daily massage.’
August 3, 2000
[comics] Bugpowder — Another excellent comics weblog. [via Blue Lines]
[big brother] A couple of reports — According to BBC News Sada wants to be a TV Presenter and newsUnlimited covers the whole Big Brother phenomenon‘Conflict is inherent in Big Brother because it is a competition. Treachery is essential, as Nick, the stockbroker, has realised. Maligned by the media he may be – the Sun’s Dominic Mohan has started a Kick Out Nick campaign – but Nick is liked by his housemates. In this week’s vote on eviction, no one has voted to have him ousted. He plays the game too well, as proved by his exploits last week, when he encouraged everyone to vote for Sada and Caroline’s expulsion then provided them with a shoulder on which to cry.’
[web] British ISP’s don’t like heavy surfers reports newsUnlimited. ‘He says one user somehow managed to clock up 29 hours of usage in one day by setting up an ISDN-style connection.”There were also several businesses using the service,” he adds, “and we had made it clear this offer was not for business users.”‘
August 4, 2000
You get that bus out Butler![on the buses] How many degrees of seperation between Kevin Bacon and Blakey (from On The Buses)? I’ve got you Butler!
[online comics] Scott Mcloud’s Zot Online. ‘Although it was a superhero series, Zot! quickly became known as “the superhero comic for people who hate superhero comics” — which isn’t the best sales strategy in the world, come to think of it… When people asked me to describe the series, I said it was “a cross between Peter Pan, Buck Rogers and Marshall McLuhan” which, uh, wasn’t much better come to think of it…’
[comics] newsUnlimited takes a look at comics being turned into film after the sucess in the US of X-Men. [Includes quotes from Frank Miller, Grant Morrison, Dave Gibbons and Kurt Busiek] ‘Grant Morrison agrees: “Comics have shrunk into comic shops which now look like porn shops and people are frightened to go in there. When Superman was selling between 4m and 6m a month, you could buy them anywhere, in any shop. One of the things they must do is get them back on the streets, back in the hands of children, out of the hands of weird 35-year-old men who collect them and sustain the industry.”‘
August 5, 2000
[big brother] This has got to be a blow to a man’s self-esteem: ‘When the news finally arrived Andy’s face said it all – he couldn’t accept the awful truth that the public wanted him out. But 68% of more than a million voters wanted him go. And as his confidence crumbled at the sound of his own name Andy’s face was complete shock. All he could say was: “Fuck.”‘ And Thomas does not really help: ‘”Look on the bright side,” he told him, “at least you can go home and have a good wank.”‘ [Other Links: BBC News report, notsosoft, Barbelith.]
August 6, 2000
[comics] Tom Spurgeon tells us how comics made him fat. ‘I take consolation only in that while I may be fucked, portions of this essay will be re-posted on the Internet after my inevitable obesity-related death.’
[simpsons] The Observer takes a look at ten years of the Simpsons. ‘Perhaps drawn by the show’s numerous highbrow cultural references, it attracts the attention of rhapsodising academics and literati worldwide. Edinburgh’s Napier University, for example, now runs a course in its Cultural Studies module entitled ‘Having the Donut and Eating It: Self-Reflexivity in The Simpsons’. The writer Gilbert Adair declared that ‘The Simpsons is a chef-d’oeuvre to which the work of no currently practising English-language novelist is comparable in importance or greatness.”
[crazy world] Kids — Just say no to drugs and spiders. ‘roommate bitten on the penis by a spider. spider is a tarantula and did draw blood. victim’s breathing is fine, however he is very afraid. victim: aaron jarva. upon arrival of ambulance 162, victim stated he had taken 2 grams of crystal methamphetamine.’
[weblogs] And just like that, she was naked.
August 7, 2000
[money] has a great article on how to get out of credit card debt. “Spending money you haven’t earned yet is like using up years you haven’t lived yet.” [via Camworld]
[big brother] Nick has a heart-2-heart with Big Brother. ‘”Everyone has a certain amount of selfishness,” he replied. “Everyone has a slight devious streak in them. In this environment it can just bring those to the surface because we’re all here to enjoy ourselves primarily. But secondly we’re all here to take part in a game show that has an ultimate prize at the end of it.”‘
[distortion] Phony Blair — amazing 3D distortion of Tony Blair, requires Pulse Player. [thanks to Yungee]
August 8, 2000
[simpsons] The Interactive Ralph Wiggum ‘”I saw Principle Skinner and Ms. Hover in the closet making babies, and I saw the baby and it looked at me”‘
[britney] Elizabeth Wurtzel talks about Britney Spears in GuardianUnlimited. ‘The signifier and the signified have gone their separate ways, as is always the case in current semiotic thinking. Men with long hair might vote for Tory MPs, guys with earrings – I mean in both ears – are usually not gay, Princess Zara has a tongue stud, Prince William wears an Eton vest meant to look like something out of Austin Powers, and a ring in the nose is a passing teenage fad that has nothing to do with worshipping Kali or Vishnu. There are hippie capitalists, there are millionaire computer programmers in Silicon Valley with purple hair. And so it has been for quite a while now. What, in this day and age, is really subversive?’
Patrick Malahide as Inspector Chisholm on Minder[bacon] How many degrees of seperation between Kevin Bacon and Detective Chisholm (from Minder)? [Related Links: Patrick Malahide’s website, Minder fan-site]
[uk weblogs] Okay. I’m not working today. It’s raining. I’ve got nothing to do till five o’clock… let’s surf some GBBlogs: notsosoft redesigns. Bloglet finds that has unexpected content. KitchBitch wonders if engagements are the new relationships and LukeLog premiers the Crack Whore Fistmonkeys Of Doom?.
August 9, 2000
[comics] If you visit one comic related website — make it this one: NeoMcCARTHYISM. A tribute site to Brendan McCarthy one of the best (and strangest) artists to work for 2000AD.
[young william] What’s the big political story in the UK at the moment? Apparently William Hague used to drink 14 pints a day when he was a younger man. ‘Leading PR man Max Clifford said the opposition leader was “trying to get away from the image of the sweet, precocious, 16-year-old cherub who stood up at the Conservative Party conference.” But added: “It won’t work because it is obvious – you don’t look at him and see a 14-pint man.”‘ [Related Links: Wonderful Steve Bell Cartoon, Guardian Article]
August 10, 2000
[my inner child] The Law of Playground is one of those sites you can spend all day looking at… ‘”I’m watching a series of programmes on bullying on the BBC2 learning zone, and I feel really fucking bad. People hang themselves about the stuff we laugh at, for god’s sake!’
[comics] reports that Rick Veitch and DC Comics are in the process of making up over their long running disagreement regarding Swamp Thing #88. Rick Veitch on DC Comics: ‘I would have to say that I sense there is a change up there from ten years ago. There seems to be more openness and a willingness to solve some of these longstanding problems and to focus on the future. All of us who do comics recognize that we have to rebuild this industry from the ground up, and certainly, I think that the ABC line can be one of the pillars of the foundation.’
[young william] A Guardian reporter follows in William Hague’s footsteps around Rotherham attempting to drink 14 pints in the process. Not surprisingly he gets a little drunk… ‘”He was in my class at Wath Comprehensive and he was a prat even then,” says Sharon, when the incredulous laughter finally subsides. “A prat. The first week of school, he stood in front of the class – nobody else did this – and his mum was standing beside him, and he said, ‘I would like to introduce myself. My name is William Hague and I’m looking forward to being at school with you all.’ I never slept with him,” she adds, as if it would have been only natural to have wondered. “He’s trying to be a Rotherham man,” says Liz, “and all Rotherham men drink a lot.” It is becoming increasingly clear that I’m never going to pass for a Rotherham man.’
August 11, 2000
[big brother] GuardianUnlimited profiles ‘Nasty’ Nick Bateman. ‘On Wednesday night’s show, the voiceover wrapped up incredulously, “Nick is now the most popular man in the house,” and Caroline and Nichola, those two “brainless rooks”, were captured on the Big Brother sofa, sharing a tender word about him. “Poor Nick,” said Caroline. “He’s so delicate.” Shakespeare himself could not have wrought a better intrigue. Recall Edmund’s defiant cry: “I grow; I prosper: now, gods, stand up for bastards!”‘
[Mr Blue] Excellent Edward Bunker retrospective in Crime Time ‘But apart from his friendship with Louise Wallis, Bunker continued to hang-out with low lifes: pimps, whores, dope-addicts and boosters. He tried heroin and then began selling crudely-harvested marijuana. While out on a delivery a police pulled up alongside him, indicating him to stop. Bunker drove off but crashed into a car and a mail truck. Apprehended by the law, he was sent to LA county jail.’ [via Beesley]
August 12, 2000
[comics] Fantagraphics have released Joe Sacco’s Safe Area Gorazde a 240 page comic book about the war in Former Yugoslavia. ‘The New York Times about Sacco’s coverage of the war, referring to Sacco’s journalism as “a searing and amusing look at the motley collection of reporters, war profiteers, criminals, soldiers and hapless civilians trapped in a war zone? Sacco’s drawings are stark, realistic visions of the gray, depressing world of a land mangled by artillery shells and deformed by poverty.”‘
[comics] Tom Spurgeon writes disturbingly about his life, family and comics in You Can Lead a Messiah to Water, But You Can’t Make Him Walk. ‘In 1990, I was arrested for drunk driving and grand theft auto. I told the officer in charge I was borrowing the stolen car to meet my friends, “Maggie and Hopey.” The first place I drove a car was Bright’s Book Exchange on Highway 332, where I bought the first issue of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. The day my friend was murdered I spent buying comics at Comics Carnival, including that issue of Cerebus where he throws the baby.’
[big brother] This is London pits UK Big Brother vs. US Big Brother. ‘So far there has only been one US drama when Karen, the oldest woman in the group, publicly dumped her husband in front of the TV cameras as she entered her temporary home. But there is little of the nastiness and sexual tension which makes watching the British gang so compelling.’
[weblogs] Barbelith is up to something interesting… 23, 22, 21, 20‘I know this is the first time that we’ve really seen each other in like two or three years, but it’s great to see you. Which reminds me, there’s another fundamental reason we must meet up again. When’s the X-men movie coming out?’
August 13, 2000
[adrian mole] Adrian Mole is the best thing about the Guardian on a Saturday… ‘Ivan went on saying to my mother, “This is an authentic working-class experience, isn’t it, Pauline?” His eyes were shining with excitement. He is turned on by vulgarity. It is why he fell in love and married my mother. My mother drew heavily on her St Moritz menthol fag with the gold-rimmed filter and said, “Ivan, I’m no longer working class. I read the Guardian and buy coffee beans now, or hadn’t you noticed?”‘
[big brother] Hours of fun with DIY Big Brother. ‘Big Brother is worried that things are getting dull, so he summons the housemates to have a mass debate about sex. After far too many cans of cider, Sarah admits that she likes to be spanked on the arse with a Bowl. Chris says he never wears condoms because they make his willy sore and Neil agrees. Joanne goes into a rant about how none of the other housemates have ever enjoyed a true orgasm because they’re all boring heterosexual bastards. Nicky sits in the corner, quietly eyeing up Neil.’
Image of Cerebus: 'Die alone, unmourned and unloved?'[comics] Interesting usenet interview with Dave Sim the creator of Cerebus from 1992. ‘Nothing frustrates me more than the twentieth century adherence to the notion that you can find out what ‘actually happened’ and that it is necessary for fiction to set out a linear, quantitative and absolute reality for the readers consumption and assurance. I think EVERYTHING is like the Kennedy assassination(s); riddled with inconsistencies, false trails, overlapping stories and considerations; distortions wrapped inside fabrications and coated with lies. The sooner we get over the idea that reality isn’t like this, the sooner we’ll be able to put together a world that fits our circumstances as they are; not as they never were and will never be. I’m not holding my breath.’
[profile] The Observer profiles Guy Ritchie. ‘He is irritated, for a start, by the way the press have attacked him for having an affluent background and a cockney, or ‘mockney’, accent. Too many jokes about his ‘manor’ having a gravel drive and a swimming pool have made him cross. ‘I never said I lived in the East End for 30 years,’ he complains.’
August 14, 2000
[big brother] The Observer finds somebody to praise Nasty Nick‘Even his name bears testament to his mission. Nicholas is clearly a reference to Niccolo Machiavelli, the founding philosopher of group intrigue. And Bateman is of course a nod to Patrick Bateman, the homicidal stockbroker who ruthlessly eliminates his rivals in Bret Easton Ellis’s American Psycho.’
[interview] The New York Times profiles/interviews Stephen King. ‘If there is a single trait common to most of King’s writing, it is the reader’s feeling that the author is playing God. He can and will make really bad things happen to his beloved creations. He will then watch them confront this evil, occasionally offering aid. Finally, after they’ve been scared witless and have proved themselves worthy, they are welcomed back into His warm embrace, humble and grateful.’
[counter] File this under pointless but intriguing: The Counter Man. My number was 741 by the way…
August 15, 2000
[big brother] GuardianUnlimited asks: Is Big Brother just like working in an office? “‘Dishonest gossip, lack of co-operation, unkind looks and sneers, the intolerance of dissent – all are now regarded by many American workplace psychologists as classic symptoms of ‘mobbing’. And they are also, of course, all leitmotivs of the Big Brother household. ‘Big Brother appears to be a microcosm of work, just as work is a microcosm of society,’ said Ishmael.”
[fear and loathing] Hunter S. Thompson can’t get interested in the US Presidential Election. ‘[..] he can’t even come up with a description for the junkies who’re mainlining it. “Anyone with half a fucking brain would be apathetic,” Hunter spits, before trailing off. “If you’re excited about this thing you’d be, um, I don’t know.” Even though Hunter’s not writing about it, he still follows, muting and unmuting CNN, which plays constantly on a 27-inch television not 12 feet from his ashtray and keyboard. He’s still biting with the same force, but the teeth are different – not as sharp.’ [via Metafilter]
August 16, 2000
[tv] Boom Box — Michael Lewis on TiVo and ReplayTV. ‘They’re seizing control of a $50 billion industry from its creators; there’s more than enough booty to go around. “The one question our investors did ask us,” Ramsay says, “is ‘How long will it take for the TV networks to hate you so much that they shut you down?””
[simpsons] Guardian Unlimited covers the Simpsons in Edinburgh. ‘At the beginning of the evening, by way of introduction, the man from Sky 1 noted: “Unlike Friends, the cast don’t get older and the scripts just get better.” Nor do they get $750,000 an episode. But then, the cast of The Simpsons are only really famous for what they actually do, and not for having nice hair or great pecs.’
[protestors] Bloglet makes an interesting point about the portrayal of paedophiles protestors in the media and reminds me of an article I read earlier last week in the Evening Standard — In defense of the women of Paulsgrove ‘ […] David Aaronovitch, writing in The Independent, mocked the Portsmouth protesters for their “peroxided hair” and their “pale faces”, brought on (he sneered) by “a diet of hamburgers, cigarettes and pesticides”. Horrors! Why do they spend their few quid on cut-price fags rather than putting it into their private pensions? Yet these women – so disgracefully patronised by commentator after commentator – were legitimately frightened about what was happening on their estate. This was an outcry by the powerless.’ [Related link: David Aaronovitch — Why I am so scared of Paulsgrove Woman]
August 17, 2000
Hicksville Cover[comics] Dylan Horrocks the creator of Hicksville sent an email to the Comix Mailing list recently detailing what he’s currently working on. ‘[..] the monthly should be pretty unmistakably me: I’ve been bamboozling mainstream comics press interviewers by describing it (pretty flippantly) as a cross between Tolkien, William Gibson and Jean Baudrillard. ;-) Anyway, enough about that – lest you fear I’m ‘lost to the dark side’ (as Heidi likes to wryly put it), I’m also hard at work on the first issue of ATLAS, my new series from Drawn & Quarterly.’ [Related Links: Drawn & Quarterly, Comix Mailing List, Review of Hicksville]
[TV] Guardian Unlimited profiles The Prisoner and Patrick McGoohan. ‘The last episode, written and directed by McGoohan, completely overdosed on weirdness pills. “Fall Out” had Number 6 gunning down guards to “All You Need is Love”, with no obvious answers to all the questions posed throughout the 17 episodes. On the night of transmission, thousands jammed the ITV switchboard, complaining about the incomprehensible finale.’ [Related Link: McGoohan at IMDB]
[big brother] Update: Nick has been disqualified from Big Brother. Earlier: BBC News reports: Big Brother’s ‘Nasty Nick’ rumbled. ‘A Big Brother spokesman said: “The online producer panicked and hit a panic button which brought the [live video and sound internet] feed down between 0400 and 0600. “It was a mistake, it shouldn’t have happened and it won’t happen again.” However, he denied widespread rumours that the situation had turned into a fist-fight.’ [Related Link: Big Brother UK]
[Mailer] Norman Mailer on the sexual revolution. ‘The six times married Mailer, who stabbed his second wife Adele in 1960 after an all-night party, said the women’s movement has been “sold down the river for a mess of corporate pottage” and sympathised with President Clinton over the Monica Lewinsky affair. “Mon frere, I thought. I’d have done it myself.”‘
August 18, 2000
[comics] Excellent interview with Authority writer Mark Millar. ‘…I thought Grant was a bit mad. He was going through his ‘Bizarro persona’ at the time. Did you ever hear about that? As a shamanic exercise, he purposely said the precise opposite of everything he meant for six entire months and broke his vocabulary down into “Me am not want drink of Vodka”, etc. It was very, very fucking scary, and his girlfriend of some years had a breakdown during the course of the exercise. He was a good sort, though, and we hit it off almost immediately thanks to my sterling knowledge of Silver Age DCs.
[photo] Image of Cary Grant taking LSD. ‘Patient Cary Grant. From a vision, a tough inner core.’
[big brother] Guardian Unlimited asks: Where were you when Nick was kicked out of Big Brother? ‘The playwright Dennis Potter once explained that he had decided to write for TV rather than the theatre because only television offered the possibility of a “common culture”: one in which people of all classes and generations experienced the same event simultaneously and talked about it the next morning.’ [Related Links: Nick Bateman Appreciation Society]
August 19, 2000
Who watches the watchmen?[[comics] Fandom reports that there is no sign of any detente between Alan Moore and DC Comics in the light of a 15th Anniversary edition of Watchmen. ‘”Regarding the Watchmen products, any renewed relationship with DC is not anything that people should be placing any hope in at all,” Moore told Newsarama. “I can tell you that right now, I’m having nothing to do with the Watchmen project – I completely disown it. I’m not at all interested if there are any more toys or anything at all comes out, and I shall not be cooperating with the project in any way.’
[books] A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius by Dave Eggers digested at Books Unlimited. ‘Toph is my laboratory. I can fill his head with my music, my books. He is one lucky, lucky guy. But he’s my problem, too. I mean, looking after your eight-year old brother is all very soulful, but how do you find the time to shag? When I’m not with him I worry someone’s hacking him to death and when I am, I just wish he’d fucking disappear and let me live my life.’
August 20, 2000
[movies] The Observer interviews Joe Eszterhas on the movie business, politics, Sharon Stone and Bill Clinton. ”Politics has become entertainment,’ says Eszterhas, ‘and entertainment has become politics. Betty Thomas, who made Private Parts and Dr Dolittle, said that comedy in Hollywood was now “funny moments with liberal inserts”, and that is right, because Sixties liberals and political correctness have taken over the industry. And the inner dynamics of Hollywood are like politics. Say you give a script to a group of executives – they all sit around, afraid to voice an opinion, saying nothing, waiting to know what the consensus is. Just like focus groups, opinion polls or a cabinet. Meanwhile, politics is about getting a candidate in front of the public as a star, politics as rock’n’roll, politics as a movie.” [Related Link: Eszterhas at IMDB]
[tech] Danny O’Brien takes a look at the rise and fall of Netscape. ‘At the end of the credits in the original Mozilla was a quote from Sartre’s Being and Nothingness: “All human actions are equivalent … and … all are, in principle, doomed to failure.” Well, maybe. But we have to keep on trying, don’t we?’
[comics] OPi8 interviews Brian Michael Bendis. ‘It’s so funny because you never see people at movie theatres go: Well, I won’t go see a Warner Brothers movie. I won’t be seen in a New Line movie. Only in comics does this happen and I am challenging some of my readers to get over their snobby selves, as far as that goes. Because I am not a genre snob. People are sometimes surprised that I love Spider-Man. I don’t mention it or it doesn’t appear that I would, but I adore him! I love the Spider-Man of yesteryear and that’s what they’ve asked me to write. There is no genre or style of comic that I won’t read. I only want my good comics. If anyone’s kicking ass on a comic, no matter that it is about, I’ll buy it!’
August 21, 2000
[god is dead] Guardian Passnotes profiles Friedrich Nietzsche. ‘Didn’t he love his fellow man? No: “Many too many are born. The state was devised for the superfluous ones.” Didn’t he regard women highly? No: “Goest thou to woman? Forget not thy whip.”‘
[big brother] Guardian Unlimited covers how Nasty Nick’s departure from Big Brother helped converge TV and the internet. ‘But if the convergence between the internet and TV isn’t to become a collision, these media need to work together. Being big on the internet doesn’t necessarily mean that TV viewing figures will decline. Viral marketing? Bollocks. Call it good old-fashioned word of mouth. Internet page impressions went through the roof and boosted, not hindered, the TV audience that night. If the content is compelling enough and production teams plan well, the internet and TV can feed each other. It is the viewer who wins.’
August 22, 2000
[chegwin porn!] My referrer logs tell me that many people come to LMG to look for naked pictures of Keith Chegwin… which always makes me laugh. Apparently he’s refusing all requests to show clips from the gameshow he appeared nude in again and according to BBC News a video of the program is about to be released which he will make a hefty profit from. LMG will link to the video as soon as it’s available. :) [Related Links: Channel 5 criticised in Commons, Original LMG posting, Original notsosoft posting]
[big brother] Charlotte Raven on the social debt we owe to Big Brother. ‘The annoying thing about all of this for those of us who stick with popular culture in the lean times as well as the good, is that dilettantish tendency to gather up all the glory without putting in the hours. If you haven’t sat through six months of crap EastEnders, I don’t see what gives you the right to come in for the Christmas episode and talk about Tiffany’s death as if you cared as much as we did.’
August 23, 2000
[jesus loves you] Good Lord! Christian sandals with Jesus Loves You written on the soles! “As I was thinking of more ways to reinforce goodness, God instructed me to cut out an old inner tube and glue the letters SUSEJ SEVOL UOY backwards onto the bottoms of sandals. When I was finished, it was raining. I walked outside and up onto a dry wooden deck and left JESUS LOVES YOU all over the deck. It was awesome, and I knew this was a wonderful new way to spread the good news.” [via ChrisH]
Transmetropolitan: Back on the Street Cover[comic] Transmetropolitan — website covering the comic of the same name…. ‘Transmetropolitan follows Spider as he harasses people with the ugly, painful truth until they are practically driven insane, fill their pants up with defication wrought of abject terror, or simply kick his ass. Then he writes articles about them.’ [Related Link: Warren Ellis]
[comics] Nice on-line comic — Bobbins. [Links: Start of the Strip, Amusing – A Tribute to Stanley Kubrick :) ]
August 24, 2000
[jesus wants me for a sunbeam] Which of your favourite celebrities is an atheist or agnostic? Find out at the The Celebrity Atheist List. Garth Ennis: ‘I’m an atheist, really. But everyone seems to think I’m some terrible lapsed Catholic who suffered the worst of a Catholic upbringing and had the crap kicked out of him by nuns and monks. In actual fact, I’m not Catholic, and I never had any kind of direct religious upbringing at all, although I was exposed to the inevitable religious influence that growing up in Ireland will give you.’
[madonna] Enough! Julie Burchill has a right dig at Madonna in todays Guardian Unlimited. ‘In the annals of bad records, this one has legs – it is very conceivably worse than the Birdie Song, Aga Doo and the last Phil Collins combined. Some books, songs and films really do make you believe that the chief ape in “Planet of” was right when he maintained that human beings were lower than chimps: Music is one of them. Give 1,000 chimps access to recording equipment for 100 years and they would not, could not, produce anything as boring as this castrated, truncated funk. Who in the name of God could summon up the motivation to walk into a record shop, enunciate the words, “Please can I have Music by Madonna?” and put their hand into their pocket? Beats me.’
August 25, 2000
[grant morrison] A scan of an early Grant Morrison comic strip — Gideon Stargrave. Originally published in 1978 in a comic called Near Myths. “Are you Gideon Stargrave?” “As often as possible, but you know how it is these days.” [Related Link: TimeMachineGo]
[america] Oh dear… Polly Toynbee gets a shower of Hate mail from the US‘You are nothing but an intolerant American-hating bigot. You can’t stand the fact that America is so rich and powerful while you live in a pathetic third-rate country that is of no significance at all. I see no reason why America should pay any attention to the whining, pissing, shitting, moaning and groaning of a bunch of idiots like you. The rest of the world has no right to expect us to share our wealth with it. It is our money, not the world’s. Bush will win in November. I hope when he wins you have a stroke and it kills you and all your fellow Eurotrash die from shock as well. America Uber Alles! Fuck the world!!’
[simpsons] The Evening Standard meets Matt Groening. “I haven’t figured out whether comedy is truly healing or whether it’s merely a bandage on the wound. It is momentarily cathartic but then you see comedians who are great on stage and depressed afterwards. Basically, we all want to be loved. Maybe my secret is that I can’t ask for it directly so I ask for it through a cartoon. ‘Hey, please love my cartoon, while I’ll just sit over here.’ If they go ‘heh, heh’ maybe that means they like me a little, too.”
August 26, 2000
[burchill] Julie Burchill takes a vast mental leap in Guardian Unlimited and draws parallels between self-pitying Radiohead listening males, the poor performance of boys compared girls at A-Levels and GCSE’s and “certain self-pitying” paedophiles. ‘But male self-pity is not always funny; sometimes, it serves as an excuse for the most loathsome sorts of behaviour. A handy catch-all cliché that the ivory-tower-dwellers among us have been dishing up in an attempt to turn popular feeling against those appalling oiks in Paulsgrove (my God, I bet none of them has even read one Julian Barnes novel!) is, “The abused, in turn, abuse”. This is, rather, one of the silliest and most easily disproved of modern myths. Some 90% of abused children are women; some 90% of child abusers are men. If it was really true that “the abused abuse”, then 90% of all child abusers would be women, wouldn’t they?’
[adrian mole] Adrian Mole on Nick Bateman: ‘I have been brutally betrayed! I feel humiliated and sick! How could he have told such terrible lies to me over the past five weeks? I admired him so much. He was the type of man I would have liked to have been myself. He was a man who could cope with adversity (the death of his young wife in a car crash). A man who led other men (an officer in the Territorial Army). He was also a healer (like Jesus), and a reiki master to boot.’
[comics] Dylan Horrocks Sketchbook — a couple of intriguing pages covering his latest work — the 1000 page Atlas.
August 27, 2000
[savile meme hoax] Excellent, compelling reading — a HOAX transcript of out-takes from Have I Got News For You between Ian Hislop, Jimmy Savile and Paul Merton. If only it were true… [Related Links: Hoax Confirmation, Tsluts, the Savile meme spreads]
[books] Guardian Unlimited interviews Luke Rhinehart aka George Cockcroft author of The Dice Man ‘Originally he had seen the dice as a way of breaking down some of the habitual stiffness he disliked in his own character: ‘I was a shy, uptight sort of guy in my teens and early twenties, and tremendously driven to succeed, get A grades and so on, and I did not like either of those characteristics one bit…’ He had the notion that by rolling a dice to make decisions, about what to read, where to go, how to react to people, he could bring risk into his life, which he otherwise seemed naturally indisposed toward. In this way, he hoped, he could turn himself into someone else.’
August 28, 2000
[weblog html meme] Mustresisttemptation
[not this life] Preview of the new drama on BBC2 called Attachments which has a website which is part of the story. ‘Attachments centres on the efforts of Mike and his wife Luce to transform his new music website,, from a bedroom hobby into a viable internet content business offering news, reviews and gossip. Frazzled executives will recognise the couple’s struggle to secure venture capital funding without having to give away too much control of their fledgling company. Those lower down the new economy food chain will be able to identify with an internet start-up office divided along content writer versus techie versus programmer versus designer social faultlines. They will also recognise the long periods idled away playing computer games and emailing mates, punctuated by short bursts of frenzied, work-through-the-night activity as deadlines loom.’ [Related Link:]
[books] News Unlimited wonders if Nick Hornby can write a sucessful new novel from a female point-of-view. ‘At his best, Hornby mines a seam that unites far more than it divides: the scary business of growing up, of putting away childish things, and of the struggle to become a fully-formed human being who can have relationships with parents, children, lovers, friends. So why is it any surprise when he decides to explore matters from a different angle in a work of fiction?’
August 29, 2000 cover[comics] BBC News takes a look at Ralph Steadman and his most recent work for children. ‘Steadman says his latest work has the same “wayward spirit” as Fear and Loathing – despite being aimed at a very different audience. “ is different because I’m not so malevolent in it,” he adds. “A children’s book is small world that is large enough for a child’s mind at bed-time.”‘ [Related Link:]
[eastenders] An Eastenders scriptwriter discusses the problems of introducing a new family in a long running TV soap. ‘To make this predictable universe work on the screen, you need characters who are relatively stable (even if they are unstable). The writers and the viewers buy into a myth that people aren’t particularly complex, that the full range of their feelings and actions can be revealed in a few hours on the TV. And a quick, visible way of revealing characters is to mirror them in their occupation. Thus we have Pauline Fowler, long-suffering drudge and matriarch. What better job than folding pants all day in the launderette? Or Peggy Butcher – tough but fun-loving and gregarious. So she runs the pub. But what attributes spring to mind when we think of Italian restaurants? Fond of pasta, perhaps? Permanently overworked? The job never provided an easy route into understanding the di Marcos’ characters.’ [Related Link: Eastenders]
[mp3 tech] Frequently asked question on the Winamp forumHow do I burn an audio CD from my MP3’s?
August 30, 2000
[mp3 people] Inside has a facinating profile of Justin Frankel — the man behind Winamp and Gnutella. ‘Frankel hasn’t been able to resist all contact with the dozens of hackers who are working on new versions of Gnutella, according to one programmer who works on file-sharing software. But Gene Kan, who is creating a version for a startup now called GoneSilent, points out that the new software ”can’t have a single line from the original AOL-controlled code — his fingerprints can’t be on it anywhere.” ”He’s peering over the fence,” says the person who sees him frequently. ”They’re doing the revolution and he’s supposed to work on stuff like the transition from Winamp 2.64 to Winamp 2.65 or some dumb thing.”’
[saville] covers the the whole Saville hoax transcript meme[#1] [#2] ‘Anyway. Such a document is clearly legally dubious at best, and since there is no evidence attached to the e-mail, it would seem logical to try to assume that it is entirely spurious as well. (In which case, of course, you would be talking vast potential libel damages.) But the strange thing about this particular meme is that most people who received the letter in question (including me – and I consider to be extremely cynical about chain e-mail) thought it to be at least plausible.’ [Interesting fact: If you type “Saville Hoax” into Google the first item you get up is a directory entry on Chris Morris. Hmmm….]
August 31, 2000
[chris morris] Second Class Male and Time To Go. Hoax columns published in The Observer about a year ago from Chris Morris. ‘Not for publication: You have made me too depressed to write. Unlike the great melancholics – Baudelaire, Beethoven – I have no genius from which to draw consolation. I am at best a Brian Wilson, but a Brian Wilson who went to bed before making Pet Sounds. Fuck you all.’
[comics] What has Evan Dorkin been up to recently? ‘The main project I’m working on is an Eltingville Club animated pilot for the Cartoon Network. The series bible (written by myself and Sarah Dyer) and pilot script (written by myself, story-edited by Sarah) have both been approved, and right now Stephen DeStefano is working on the storyboards. I’ve designed all the characters and as a producer on the pilot I have say on all aspects of production.’
[weblogs] Linking 1-2-3 — some ideas on how to find interesting and useful links. [Discusses tech links, but the the same principles apply — especially if you do a “link heavy” weblog like LMG]