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5th June, 2002. 1:29 am. Mmm... photos.

A concorde and the Red Arrows flew past today...


planes again

The BBC had a better view. Something tells me they knew in advance... ;)

BBC planes

However, I like what I'm able to do with a revolving window and a nice sunset:


God save the photography.

P.S. Watched 'Le Fabuleux destin d'Amélie Poulain' tonight (a.k.a. 'Amélie'). Very heart-warming, romantic, captivating, sincere, sweet. 9/10. See it/her when you can - she'll change your life.

Current mood: indifferent.

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3rd June, 2002. 4:45 pm. My life rocks. A bit.

Haven't been up to huge amounts since the Crackout gig. In fact, the only other slightly interesting thing I did that week was get my hair cut. Amazing.

This (Jubilee) weekend though, has been slightly more entertaining. Callie (erotiquekitten) paid me a much-welcomed visit and we had some fun in the relatively short amount of time I got to spend with her on Saturday night/Sunday morning. Crisps, drugs, Adam & Joe, condoms, shampoo, towels... say no more. Then she went to be on TV, 'cos she's so famous and all. I'd do a screen grab but my capture device is playing up - sorry.

Last night was spent with Paul (thunderdome), his girlfriend Alison, Rich from upstairs, and his cool mate Pete (well, I think he's quite a cool guy anyway), at an interesting, supposedly Jubilee-related, gig at The Windmill in Brixton. I saw a man who sounded like Beck with the lyrics of Billy Bragg (who was on Callie's TV show, as it happens) - he calls himself Kai Motta. Then Goldrush, who were supposed to be 'secret' guests, but that blatently didn't work because a lot of people came and went for them. They were alright, I suppose. Then came the heartfelt Mr. Toby Slater who played a great set with his band. I think I've seen him 5 times now - all good. Last on the bill were The Koreans, of whom I know the singer, Brent (see the Crackout entry below), and their managers Simon and Sean. Unfortunately due to having generally very little sleep over the past few days, and having sunk a few pints of lager, I was having trouble standing up straight and keeping my eyes open so I retreated to a chair at the back of the pub for their set, after having a brief conversation with Esther who helps manage Crackout. We ended up leaving about half midnight - the 5 of us piling into a taxi that was only meant for 4, and being the small guy I got to sit with my head grating against the ceiling. When we got back I thankfully fell asleep as soon as my head hit the pillow. Aw.

Current mood: calm.

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29th May, 2002. 6:05 pm. World Cup Fantasy Football

Right, who's up for it? It's free at this Irish betting site, so long as you register an account (you can tick the box that says "don't spam me!" etc.). There are cash prizes to be won, and I think you can still register/play once the cup has started. There's also some lame rule about no under 18s.

Once you've registered for the World Cup game, picked your squad and then chosen your initial team of 11, join the following league:

Name: World Mugs
Password: tintin

And there we go. You can change your team each day. My team is called "36 Years Of Hurt". I hope to wipe the floor with yours.

This is the URL of the main site:

Also, there are some great World Cup planner spreadsheets that are knocking around - the first one is 3 MB big, but is absolutely amazing:

Current mood: stressed.

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22nd May, 2002. 3:57 am. Monday at the Monarch

We (Paul (thunderdome), his girlfriend Alison, Rich, my new Scottish Crackout-mates Jeni and Lyndsay, Sean, KP, Gen and various others) cracked out to Crackout. Or something. Rich was drunk. The rest of us weren't really. Hung around the Monarch for at least an hour after the gig, then most of us piled onto Crackout's tour bus (packed it out) and caught a lift from Camden (NW1) to Camberwell (SE6) to chill out in the rehearsal rooms of The Koreans, under a railway arch. Stayed there until about 3:30, then made my way back to the flat with Rich via bus and taxi.

'Twas a good night. Moderately rock \m/

For more information, see my small collection of photos and Rich's far larger gallery.

Current mood: chipper.

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19th May, 2002. 4:50 am. Brighton Rock - Mansun rock

I saw Mansun in Brighton tonight. They rocked. Nuff said.

Current mood: grateful.

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16th May, 2002. 7:16 am. Home sweet home

Continuing from last time... Thursday was similar to the previous days (i.e. woke up, did work and stuff, went to bed).

Friday was a little more eventful with a trip to HMV for my weekly CD shop, and to take back some bread to Tesco that had strangely come with a piece of plastic embedded inside the loaf. Should have taken a photo of it I guess, just so you might know what I'm going on about. In the evening I just stayed in with Paul (thunderdome) and watched TV and chilled out.

Saturday was again spent in the flat - I just did bits of work, caught up with e-mails, watched bits of Ferris Bueller's Day Off on Film Four while doing the National IQ Test on TV (managed to get 63/70, which means I did pretty well - see the conversation score chart, which annoys me because you have to be age 55+ to qualify for MENSA, which is just plain silly). In fact, I think I'm gonna do some ranting about the test, because there were so many flawed parts of it...

Just looking at the results by age, and it shows that you apparently get more intelligent as you grow older. Could it not just be that the stupider people die earlier, so the average intelligence gets higher? Also, on the night they said that on average men had scored a bit higher than women - could this be because the more intelligent women deliberately went out on a Saturday night to score free drinks off the stupid men out there, while the intelligent men stayed in because they realise they shouldn't be buying all the drinks? Also, what I like to hear the most, is that the overall average for everyone taking part on the Internet (as I did) on the night was about 110 or thereabouts - higher than what should be the average of the population - 100. So, could it be that the score was higher because stupid people were watching ITV1 instead (of BBC1) - showing Stars In Their Eyes - Coronation Street Special?!

Anyway, later on after that I think Paul and I played Wave Race on my GameCube for quite a while, then Paul went to bed about 3:30, while I stayed awake to play Wave Race some more and activiate new levels. While playing, a large ocean liner came past on the river, with tug boat escorts and everything. The following photo was actually taken last June, but it gives you an idea of the scale of it - quite a spectacle:

Big boat on da river

Sunday was spent playing Wave Race some more, cleaning up the flat (should have been done 5 weeks ago after Flat Party III!), watching TV, surfing, working and the usual.

Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday this week have all been along the same lines as the working days last week. Boring, I know. Was gonna see Gemma Hayes on Monday night but decided not to at the last minute because I couldn't really give up 5 hours (gig + travel time). Sadly I had a couple of major upsets with Callie (erotiquekitten), so I don't know really know how things stand there at the moment.

Tonight was a little different than other nights, for once. Went to the local multiplex with Paul and Rich (from upstairs) and saw the nice About A Boy - quite amusing in places, didn't bore at all, and I naturally felt a lot of similarity with the main character Will - although I do actually work and have friends and don't enjoy living life on my own quite as much as him. I rate the film 8/10.

Then, after drinks at the bar... (fanfare) we saw Star Wars: Episode II - Attack Of The Clones, and it rocked. I'd never thought The Phantom Menace was that bad, but this was significantly better. (I don't think this next bit contains any major spoilers...) Obviously far less Jar Jar Binks, far more interesting plot, far better cheesey lines (C-3PO comes out with some great ones towards the end), a purple lightsaber, an amazing display from a small green Jedi master, the introduction of Boba Fett and his 'dad' Jango, a new villian (played by Christopher Lee, but not in the same style as in Lord Of The Rings), a suprising appearance of an Australian actor that I recognised from Channel 4's 'The Secret Life Of Us' playing Owen Lars ('Uncle Owen' in Episode IV: A New Hope), and plenty more. Loads of scenes that it could be said were ripped from other classic action/sci-fi films (like Gladiator, The Matrix, Bladerunner, Lord Of The Rings, The Fifth Element...) but ultimately Star Wars came first on the big screen and they were pretty much all rip-offs of that. Anyhow, as you might have guessed, I really, really liked it, and give it 9/10. Yes, some of the acting was wooden, but I don't care - the acting has always been like that and it's not what the film or even the whole saga is about. It's about good vs. evil, light vs. dark, love vs. hate, with added lightsabers and holographic messages and Jedi mind tricks and stormtroopers making it totally unique. And now I can finally list my Top 5 Star Wars movies of all time:

1. Episode IV: A New Hope
2. Episode II: Attack Of The Clones
3. Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back
4. Episode VI: Return Of The Jedi
5. Episode I: The Phantom Menace

I am very much looking forward to the next and final movie. I predict it will be called 'The Clone Wars', although I hope it actually turns out to be something else because 'Clone' has already been used in a title, like, off the top of my head... 'Fall Of The Republic'. This half-amusing script will generate random suggestions, and loads of more likely titles are here.

OK, sucking-up to Star Wars all over now. I'll put my lightsaber back in the cupboard for another 3 years...

Current mood: satisfied.

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9th May, 2002. 4:59 am. Busy weekend, and week, for that matter

This is gonna have to be brief...

Friday - did work, bought GameCube, CDs and groceries, played GameCube, had pre-birthday drinks up at Rich's, played GameCube some more, went to bed.

Saturday - did some work, packed, left, went to Manchester, met up with various friends, saw Mansun play, hung around after the gig which led to hanging around with the band for a few hours, slept at Uni friend Adam's house.

Sunday - wrote up gig report, had pub lunch with Adam and his girlfriend George, got dropped off at Stockport, got train to Stoke-on-Trent, went to pub by venue, went to gig, hung around a bit afterwards, went back to Crackout friend Kitty's house with a bunch of people, did stuff, got little sleep.

Monday - left Kitty's house with Callie via a taxi to the station, both went to Derby, then Burton-on-Trent (Callie's 'haunt'), spent an hour or two in town being shown the sights, left on a train for Birmingham, got another to London, but had to change at Watford because of problems on board, got home mid-evening, did work, collapsed.

Tuesday - woke up, did work and stuff, went to bed.

Wednesday - woke up, did work and stuff, went to bed.


Current mood: exhausted.

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3rd May, 2002. 6:04 am. My head hurts...

...not exactly sure why - lack of sleep lately, probably. Today, then, was spent in the flat working. Got up about 1, started answering e-mails, watched Neighbours, went down to collect my post, made some lunch, got back to work. Usual stuff really. Slightly unusual tasks included filling in a VAT registration form, paying our accountant/secretary for the first time, putting up the first Mansun tour report, and having an interesting chat with Callie. Also reserved myself a purple Nintendo GameCube (sponsored by my parents as a late birthday present) and a couple of games from the local HMV which I'll collect tomorrow (you can also get them in black). Sadly not much else to report, but I've got a busy weekend coming, so there'll be more to read about after then (if you really care).

Plug time: if you're into music and want to see what technology can do for you, try setting up a Drowned in Sound user account and rating lots of artists on it. Then you can get it to search through all the other ratings to work out what other artists you might like. Nice idea, and it will get better and better as more people use it.

Oh, and while I remember, my mum is apparently going to be on a phone-in competition on national in about two hours time. I would tell you the name of the station, but then you might hear her, and we wouldn't want that to happen. I have set my alarm to wake me up for it, even though I will be very cranky because I'll only have had an hour or two of sleep, so I may just drop-kick the alarm clock and go back to sleep, but if I don't I will in theory be phoning up to vote for her (which might give away what exactly she'll be doing on air), although to be honest I don't think one extra vote will make much difference. Then again, if I listen to it and she is the best of the bunch, I suppose voting would be a good idea, both to represent my opinion and to support her. The fact she won her 'heat' on Tuesday (winning her tickets to 'The Full Monty' musical here in London and hotel accomodation for the night) would imply she was pretty good. If she wins today's final that prize is exchanged for tickets to see the same show but on Broadway, obviously with travel and accomodation included. Anyway, I shall see(/hear!), if my body allows me.

Current mood: giddy.

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2nd May, 2002. 2:48 am. Bugger

My video didn't record Teachers or Mark Thomas. Bugger.

Current mood: annoyed.

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2nd May, 2002. 2:25 am. *sigh*

Less than 24 hours since my first proper blog and already I'm upsetting, informing and generally making an impact. It's tough being, well, me.

Woke up just before 4pm (I am so rock - \m/), after going to bed just before 9am, and being woken up at various times due to work phonecalls. Spent the following 3 or 4 hours answering e-mails, responding to outspoken people on here, chatting with Callie and attending to various online bits and bobs.

Ended up leaving the flat just before 8:30 to arrive at Shepherds Bush Empire for 9:15 to catch The Electric Soft Parade and The Cooper Temple Clause, playing their New To Q gig. The former put on a fairly good show, but the audience didn't seem to want to get into it, probably 'cos they were all Coopers fans. So that meant the latter came across much better, probably because at the end of the day they are that bit better and are more likely to hit the dizzy heights of success, in my humble opinion. Third time I've seen them in the last month. Highlights for me were 'Let's Kill Music', 'Amber' and 'Filmmaker'. Watched the set sitting next to a nice guy called Gordon who said he works for Xfm. Another contact in the business to add to the list I guess.

I got into the gig courtesy of Gordon and Paul Kramer, one of the main men behind the forthcoming Hit Sheet music industry magazine. I may aswell tell y'all that I am looking after their website, and although I'm doing so for free I think it's a good move for me because it doesn't require a huge amount of work and is already starting to open doors. Anyway, we'll see how it goes. Paul showed me a mock-up of the magazine and it's looking very nice. First issue is out in a week's time, I believe. Apply for a free sample issue by following the instructions on the messageboard, although to be fair on them (a start-up business), only do so if there's a chance you might actually subscribe.

Listened to Mansun's 'Six' album on the way to the gig and on the way home. How on earth I forgot to play this record to myself in the last six months or so I will never know. It is just amazing.


Anyway, since I got back a couple-a-hours ago I've been online for a bit, eaten some nice egg fried rice, updated a Crackout web page, spoken to Callie online and on the phone, chatted about general trivialness and my ex-beard with John (The Red Queen), and found out that ITV Digital sadly have stopped the naughty channels, although Channel 4 have been kind enough to allow E4 and Film Four to continue until May 24th. Why the rest of the channels don't do this (surely they'll make more than enough money from people watching adverts on their channels to cover whatever ITV Digital should have paid them) I do not know. Then again, I do not really care because we have Sky Digital too. We are spoilt.

Right, time to take out my contacts, do some work, watch TV from tonight on video, and watch the sun come up, which is starting to happen quite early, now that we're approaching summer.

P.S. Tim Hill ('culturedgoat') - I saw you dancing to The Electric Soft Parade like a mad hamster. Just thought I should say. Enjoy The White Shites tonight (Thursday - each to their own I guess).

Current mood: content.

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