Friday, December 30, 2005

Top Five Albums of the Year

Well, everyone else is, so why shouldn't I?

1) Goldfrapp - Supernature

Much as I loved the dirty rough electronica found en-mass in Black Cherry, I felt it was a little inconsistent and had few great songs on it. "Supernature" however completely blew me away on first listen and still continues to do so.

It's smoother, more seductive, more hypnotic, and more jam-packed full of great songs than it's predecessor. And the nods towards glam-rock give the album a style all of its own. Absolute genius.

2) Rachel Stevens - Come and Get It.

No-one did of course, making this also a contender for the most criminal waste of 2005, but I came back to it after a few weeks of ignoring it yesterday and it's still absolutely fucking brilliant. Wantonly overproduced of course but that's what makes it so special.

"I Said Never Again (But Here We Are)" is quite clearly the most brilliant single of 2005 and that is without exception, but there's just an embarrassment of riches on this album. There are two tracks I don't listen to very much, but out of 13 that's actually a higher hit-rate than any album I can think of.

3) Girls Aloud - Chemistry.

Until this release I always considered GA to be a singles band, never thinking much of their album tracks. But here we have a consistently top-notch album full of sauce, energy, vim and vigour, great tunes and inventively oddball arrangements. The Intro, Models, Biology, Long Hot Summer, Swinging London Town, Wild Horses and (of course) Racy Lacey are just utterly fabulous.

I'll admit that nothing quite reaches the pure pop confection heights of The Show or Love Machine, but it's a close run thing and the supporting tracks for once hold their own against the obvious singles, and the whole album also manages to be interesting.

4) Stock Aitken Waterman - Gold

Okay, a compilation. And none of it original. But a must-have release for pop-lovers all the same. Track after track of solid pop songs which have stood the test of time surprisingly well, plus some rareties and an unreleased version to boot.

5) Ladytron - Witching Hour

Quite a difficult listen in parts, but perseverance pays off. A much more muscular set of tracks than previous efforts, but all the better for it. And "Destroy Everything You Touch" is my without a doubt my second favourite single of the year.

Other standout tracks - purely because I think they're more traditionally crafted songs I suspect - are "International Dateline", "Sugar", "Last One Standing" and "AMTV". And as far as I'm concerned any collection with tracks like that in it could frankly do no wrong.

Special Mention:

To a band that didn't quite make it: Garbage's Bleed Like Me is an album and a half too and narrowly missed being caught up in the net. It could easily be six, but if I added that I'd have to go ten and my brain's already hurting.

But where would Madonna come, I hear you ask? Well... I'm not sure exactly. But given how bloody unimpressed I am by "Confessions on a Dancefloor" I doubt whether she'd get a terribly high ranking. Maybe lower top twenty (although to be honest I'm not sure if I bought that many albums).

Vitalstatistix

Just out of curiosity last night I opened up Excel and tried to figure out just how many kilos of fat I've lost over the last ten weeks. I know I've lost six kilos in weight, but of course I've put on muscle in its stead.

So,

Week 1: The Lardy Bastard.

105.8 Kilos, 28% Body Fat = (105.8/100)*28 = 29.62 Kilos of Body Fat.

Week 10(ish) : The Less Lardy Bastard.

98.7 Kilos, 20% Body Fat = (98.7/100)*20 = 19.74 Kilos of Body Fat.
Which means that I've lost almost 10 kilos of pure fat, whilst only having lost 7.10 Kilos in total.

Which can only mean the difference of 2.78 Kilos is muscle.

I hope.

But if it is - woohoo!

Early Shift

Ye Gods. I'm at work early.

Due to the fact that some idiot specified it in one client's contract, our function has to cover the hours of 8 till 6 in case a client experiences issues with the system.

I'm normally in by 8:30 and leave at 6 so I can have an extended lunch break for the purposes of going to the gym, popping into Oxford Street to try shoes on and have salad, and so on. Someone else normally takes the 8:00 stint.

But today they are all on holiday and I'm the only one who lives in London and stands a chance of getting here on time so here I am.

And boy it's dull.

However it did afford me the opportunity of a walk through snowfall on my way to the bus which was kind of magical.

That said, it's nice to be back in the heat again.

Thursday, December 29, 2005

Wanderlust

I could, if I were in that kind of mood, start to worry about the fact that at least three of my friends are intending to leave the country in the next few years.

That, however, is the least of my concerns. My concern is that they're all going "oh you must come over and see me" - a phrase which just strikes a mixture of terror and weariness into the heart of my very being due to the simple fact that I will do absolutely anything in my power to avoid travel at any costs.

Seriously. I find it hateful. Even the trip to work of a morning is something I'm hostile to - in fact it's a wonder they don't find a host of dead bodies at the depot when they turn it round.

And as for flying, well... Whilst my general fear of it has more or less gone (the thought that I could die horribly and not be able to do anything about it has become strangely liberating of late), I now just loathe the whole experience right from the minute I leave the house to get to the airport, through check in ("no we don't have any legroom, Sir"), the flight itself ("yes, we really meant no legroom, but here: watch some crap"), Passport Control ("well, you're British, you're supposed to like queuing") and then being overcharged for a taxi at the other end.

And while we're on the subject, America, it's all very well being security conscious because a lot of people do seem to hate you. But if you're going to put in place procedures that make the process take longer, employ more staff to do it! Nothing is more annoying about Passport Control and Security Checks than long queues and seven desks / scanners devoid of staff.

So with all this in mind you can imagine that these people who vanish off for a quick weekend in Barcelona I really don't understand at all.

Don't get me wrong, I could happily spend ages in a foreign country. I loved Gran Canaria, Boston seemed lovely enough, and there are many places I'd like to spend time in. But I also know that invariably any good I get from a break of such length will be completely undone by the stress and tension I would endure from the return journey.

It's terrible really, I'm rubbish at keeping in touch as it is - there are friends in other counties I haven't seen for a couple of years, never mind countries. I just know that adding the prospect of international travel to the mix is going to lead me to seeing these people about twice a decade at most.

Yes, I'm lazy. Yes, I'm indolent, far too easily stressed and generally a stay-at-home sort. All these charges are justified and accurate. But I have a sneaking suspicion that after 28 years of it, it's somewhat late to change this attitude now - even if I could imagine what could possibly trigger that change.

The invention of the teleport might help I guess.

Assuming the terminal is conveniently located.

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Nothing Good About This Goodbye

Reports are in circulation stating that Rachel Stevens has been dropped by Polydor who are less than impressed by her last run of single and album sales.

All of which means we won't get to see the dream package of "Nothing Good About This Goodbye" backed with "Crazy Boys" (definitely a fantasy pairing of mine - like Ryan Reynolds and Alastair Appleton).

Frankly it's hardly the surprise of the century. Despite putting out one of the best albums of the year (sorry Madge but it pisses over your dismal effort) record-buyers just won't buy her material.

Proof if any were needed that a career cannot survive on lad's mags alone.

Her management company, 19, however, are reportedly saying they'll still record and release material with her only under their own 19 label, which should be a good thing, but of course I can't help but listen to that small voice in the back of my head that goes "yes - and that worked so well for Emma Bunton".

Normal Service Has Been Resumed

Oh that's better.

Amazing what four days off will do for the soul isn't it? Headed over to my Aunt's on Christmas Eve then subsequently spent the next two days, sleeping in late, damaging my liver and trying to avoid being killed with food. (That said there's something terribly civilised about a Christmas Breakfast of smoked salmon, scrambled egg and Bucks Fizz so no complaints here.)

Christmas Day highlight was of course "The Christmas Invasion", David Tennant's debut as Doctor Who and frankly it's amazing how much confidence the series is gaining as it progresses. I felt the latter few episodes of the "first" series were stunning, but this came dangerously close to wiping the floor with them.

Slight quibble with the way the Doctor decided to turn on Harriet Jones (coz frankly I felt she was practically right if not morally) because it seemed an angry and truculent reaction, but hey. I wonder what it does to canon considering it's already been stated that she presided for three consecutive terms. That'll be an interesting one.

Windypops! was a great success on Monday. Jam-packed and I didn't feel too stupid with the dodgy school uniform - or at least the closest I could manage since I couldn't find my genuine school tie. It had a slightly fraught start since the person who should have been on first wasn't there in time (I was again the emergency "Break Glass to Open" DJ), and nor was Other Rob since the Oxford Tube decided to get stuck en-route back to London.

Still, all arrived and I got a follow-up set later on to a crowded dancefloor, received positive comment on my choices and had great fun.

Naturally, however, I got utterly hammered during the course of the evening and spent much of yesterday morning trying to get clear-headed enough to do some songwriting with 'Stina in the afternoon. That was an interesting experience to be sure, but we got some good work out of it and now feel much more sure about ourselves and the writing process so that's all good.

Now of course I'm back at work and longing for a couple more days of holiday, but hopefully it shouldn't be too fraught.

Seeing the sadist later to try and burn off some of the overindulgence. That could take some doing, of course, but never mind eh?

Friday, December 23, 2005

Thought for the Day

"Knowledge is Power" the old adage goes.

Bollocks it is.

Knowledge, as I have sadly come to realise, simply means more work.

'Tis a Season of Goodwill...

... unless you happen to be the piggy-eyed despot Bob Crow and fellow members of the RMT, that is.

This time my least favourite union (and that's quite a feat) have decided that they're going to bring the tube to a complete standstill on New Year's Eve.

You see, earlier this year when the bits of string holding together the brakes on the Northern Line started fraying I was fully in support of the walkout. It was fair enough: the safety of drivers and passengers alike was directly threatened and the failure to adequately maintain stock was one of the main reasons the tube should never have been put into the hands of profiteering private companies.

This time, though I can't help but feel, as with most RMT actions, that it's about power, and who wields the most. Penalising Londoners on one of the big nights out of the year, a time supposedly of celebration and joy, is to my mind a determinedly shabby act.

Frankly there are other routes these days to get what you want - employment laws, arbitration and so on - but Crow's cronies won't take them because if every time you just go "fine, we'll strike then" then you win both ways. If they cave in, you've shown your power. If they don't then you affect the lives of hundreds of thousands of people.

And frankly I resent the fact that I am being used by these people in an attempt to force TFLs hand.

Frankly they can just fuck right off. I was planning to avoid NYE this year anyway.

Thursday, December 22, 2005

Every Step You Take

When things go wrong, I find, they tend to go wrong along every single step of the way.

Last night my journey home proved to be somewhat tortuous, which only served to annoy me since young Benjamin was due over for our traditional night of Who-ery and I knew Chris wouldn't be in to greet him should I fail to arrive in time.

So, I arrived at Bank to be greeted with a sign saying that the northbound Northern Line was stopped due to a passenger under a train at Moorgate, just one stop up the line.

Naturally my heart swelled with pity and sorrow at the loss of a human life.

Okay, I lie: I rolled my eyes and went "oh fucking hell" and went to see if I could get a 43 bus.

I then stood for twenty minutes while several Number 25 buses to Oxford Street go past (mmmm, bendy) before giving up and deciding to try my luck at Finsbury Square where there were two other bus routes I could take. Handily a number 21 arrived at that point so I elbowed, bit and kicked my way onto that so that it could take me to Moorgate.

Now, Bank is located in what is actually the "City" of London. This used to be known as the square mile, although I suspect that description is slightly inaccurate. It's called the City because it's got St. Paul's Cathedral in it, and a cathedral is what makes the difference between a town and a city. (It's an important distinction in London, because if you go to the West End, you're in the town. Head to Bank, and you're in the city. So there.)

The City of London, of course, is a bit old. It kind of predates traffic planning, and has curvy streets, heavy set and improbably shaped buildings, many many odd angles and - by Bank itself - a junction which is to say the least mystifying to all concerned.

Back in the 1950s it was probably just about usable by the level of traffic they had, but now it's a nightmare for drivers, cyclists and pedestrians alike. The route from London Bridge to Moorgate you could walk along in half an hour. Choose to drive that same route and you'd best take a packed lunch just in case it turns out there's something wrong.

In retsrospect therefore it was a mistake getting on that bus becuase fire engines and ambulances outside a tube station on a narrow City street clearly consistute "something wrong". We inched slowly forward over the course of the next fifteen minutes before finally everyone got off and walked.

The streets up to Moorgate were gridlocked. As is often the way with humans, when faced with "something wrong" there is a tendency to shut down any higher level mental processing and just take a few chances - all of which makes the problem worse. Traffic could have flowed if people had behaved sensibly, but no... it was absolute Bedlam.

In the end I had get three different buses, it took two hours to get home, and on every single bus my Oyster Card wouldn't swipe which means I'm going to have to get the damn thing replaced.

See what I mean? Every bleeding thing was against me.

Except one: Ben was running late too, which as it turned out was a very good thing indeed.

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

They're Just Dropping Off Aren't They?

Amazingly, I discovered yesterday that since the last time I was measured I have lost another 2.5 kilos.

Annoyingly it's not showing in my face yet, but everything's definitely slimming down elsewhere which is rather gratifying. Hopefully in another few weeks I'll be well into the "average" category.

Even more amazingly I've actually started looking forward to going to the gym.

The Sadist is still a Sadist, but I'm now getting the feeling that it's all working, I'm definitely definitely getting stronger and I even shocked him by grunting "no, just one more" at one point yesterday.

Apparently I'm even holding myself differently when I stand. This is something I haven't noticed, to be brutally honest, but I guess being more erect isn't something I'm averse to.

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Oh! Hello!

It's very odd.

I seem to have discovered a new liking for tattoos.

There were about three men with them at the gym today and I found myself idly considering the prospect of running my tongue round the pattern.

I suspect it helped that the men were hot, fit, muscly guys who I wouldn't have minded falling under anyway, but it's still a new item for the list of "things I never thought I'd like but definitely make me sit up and take notice".

Bars in the eyebrow I find oddly sexy too.

I Love Technology

Our email is down and apparently might not be fixed for 24 hours.

Only incoming stuff, mind. Anything we send out seems to get there, as does internal stuff, but it means none of our clients can contact us.

This is not going to be popular I can tell.

Still, it could be a quiet day as a result I guess.

And then of course tomorrow will be hell on toast. Gah!

Monday, December 19, 2005

'Tis the Season...

Hmm.

Just took a wander up to Leadenhall Market - mainly coz I'd never been - and on my way poked my nose in Waterstones and HMV to see what's what.

It occurs to me that anyone prepared to go into a shop this week had also better be prepared to kill.

Absolute carnage.

Thank God for the Internet.

The Day of Exes

For about a week now I must confess to have been steeling myself for a party at Lee's, the prospect of which was gnawing at me somewhat and filling me with a certain amount of dread.

Don't get me wrong, Lee and I get on fine, so I wasn't worried about him at all, it was everything else. The whole possibility of meeting other people I hadn't seen since "the divorce" and whether that would be awkward, actually meeting my successor and worrying whether there'd be daggers drawn there and so on. Then there were the new close friends who I wouldn't know, but might know something about me and have pre-drawn conclusions and so on.

Frankly I can work myself up into a frenzy over absolutely anything given enough time to do it, so having a few weeks' notice was more than ample warning to develop sheer mind-numbing terror.

Thankfully it was all rather lovely and my fears were totally unfounded. In fact as far as I'm aware the only casualty was my t-shirt which suffered at the hands of a carelessly aimed glass of red wine, but never mind. There were a couple of moments where I found myself thinking "God, I bought that book" or "oh hang on, it's THIS sofa" but they were more nostalgic moments rather than unpleasant.

In fact the worst bit was the fact that almost everyone I didn't know was so damned attractive. Frankly, I hate being surrounded by attractive people, it always makes me desperately self-conscious (in fact it quite ruined a New Year's Party I went to once).

Thankfully due to the fact I was drinking wine by the pint I swiftly found myself not caring.

Being introduced to people as "the fourth Mrs. Binding" was a little surreal though.

By a bizarre coincidence, however, on Sunday morning I logged onto Thingbox to discover another ex had popped out of the woodwork, joined the site and dropped me a line. Less of an ex in this case - we're talking weeks not years - but there was still a certain amount of emotional attachment on my part which certainly came back to bite me later on.

But as it turns out we had quite a lengthy conversation via the medium of Edison's All-Electric Interweb which was all quite jolly and pleasant, not least because the opening message featured the word "stud" as applied to me, which - I'm afraid - put me in a good mood all morning.

It did get me thinking though, that I'm quite fortunate really, to have all this bonhomie between my exes and I. Pretty much every breakup I've had has had a fair bit of lingering fallout (and yes I'm very aware that I'm the common factor here) and each one has ultimately required a fair bit of "distance" to get things sorted, but sorted they seem to have been, which is nice.

Certainly compared to the antagonism which I've seen in my social circle between some ex-partners I'm currently feeling rather smug that I seem have quite good-natured and easy interactions with mine.

I suppose I'm just lucky that they're all rather nice chaps. I seem to have landed on my feet there.

Sunday, December 18, 2005

Fruity Loopy Nuts are We

So Fruity Loops version 6 has finally been released.

And as a registered user I got the upgrade absolutely free.

It's lovely. I love it to bits. The interface has been improved no end, there's now the option to record entire mixer channels to hard disk (including volume changes, effects and so on) and thus save the CPU power that the syths take up, and the WASP generator now has WASP XT alongside it which does some of the greatest phat noises I ever did here.

I'm as happy as a pig in shit I really am.

Remixing away like mad right now. Hopefully have a couple of demos ready for 'Stina when she comes over after Christmas. They need to be turned into songs now.

Saturday, December 17, 2005

Bless 'Em!

So I arrive home on Thursday to find - to my horror - a card through the door saying the Royal Mail had tried to deliver a parcel but it was too big for the letterbox.

I muttered dark things to myself about losing my lie-in on Saturday, but determined to power-mince down there this morning and pick it up.

So I did.

And what is said parcel?

As it turns out, a "size four" Wensleydale Fruit Cake and 200g of Hand Crafted Real Wensleydale Cheese.

I don't know why I looked at the card - I already knew who it was from.

So here's to Dad, Shelley and Daniel. Clearly they wanted me to have something in time for Christmas since I'm not seeing them until the New Year. And this totally unexpected and yet very sweet parcel is the result.

Bless them. My folks are so random sometimes.

Friday, December 16, 2005

The Midnight Folk

I have of late been encouraging my Christmas spirit along by watching the Box of Delights on DVD. It's a sort of annual thing, see and it's one of my favourite memories of childhood which - despite some fairly lousy effects by today's standards - is still exceptionally magical.

And it has Patricia Quinn in it. Playing - as ever - Patricia Quinn, but this time supposedly being Sylvia Daisy Pouncer.

It occurred to me though, that I woudn't mind reading the book so I dived onto Amazon and found myself a copy.

And it was there I learned something that surprised me: Box of Delights is a sequel.

Kay Harker, Abner Brown, Rat and "The Pouncer" all appear in John Masefield's earlier novel called "The Midnight Folk". Which now explains away that bit where Kay sees Pouncer, recognises her as his former governess, and calls her a witch.

And I just thought it was sloppy plotting. I really should have more faith.

Both books are now ordered and on their way.

Thursday, December 15, 2005

Spolling for Begooners

I'm being driven to distraction at the moment by the word "Tardis" appearing in print left right and centre.

And when I say "driven to distraction" you have to bear in mind that I'm English so this translates into action as far as rolling my eyes and going "tch", not actually getting homicidal urges.

Thing is, it isn't "Tardis", it's "TARDIS". It's an acronym for "Time and Relative Dimension in Space" and acronyms are capitalised.

So ner.

I'm not yet at the point of writing letters to the editor - just whinging about it here which is admittedly only one step away - but it does make me wonder what brand of English they teach these bloody journalists these days.

Although in the case of the tabloids I'm fairly sure it's a case of "taught? don't need it mate, I speak fluent don't I?"

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

If Santa Needs a Helper Why Should It Be Me?

Despite being nearly garrotted by the decorations in Retro Bar last night (and I had enormous fun thanks for asking, even if I can't remember much about it), I'm starting to feel a little more positive about Christmas now.

As you may have noted from at least one earlier post, Christmas cheer has been in short supply on Planet Rob. Office parties and the whole rigmarole of doing cards, buying presents and so on leave me with a definite feeling of humbuggery which I've found very difficult to shake off.

But now, as the inevitable finally approaches, it seems to be slowly beginning to burn within me.

I think it's got something to do with the fact that all the presents have been purchased, the cards have been sent, all the wrapping is done and - during lunch - I will be sending off the presents for my parents by special delivery so I don't have to cart them down in the New Year.

The work of Christmas seems to be over at last so I finally feel able to enjoy it.

A state of affairs for which I think a resounding "yay" is richly deserved.

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Productivity

Well, as is always the case when you're off ill, I ended up being terribly productive yesterday.

And I got quite a lot of little jobs done too.

For much of the morning I sat in a haze of tea-tree oil and plug in vapourisers feeling rather sorry for myself. As Tom Baker himself has noted, self-pity can be quite a pleasant indulgence from time to time, so I let it have full reign for a few hours before finally deciding to snap out of it and get stuff done.

Shoes got polished, leather jacket was scuff-covered, polished and cleaned, Christmas cards were written, CDs burned and the new Asterix book read.

And on that last point may I just say how far downhill they've gone since Goscinny died? Good, because they bloody well have. I was appalled. Aliens in spaceships? Good lord.

Anyway, I got round to doing much of this whilst watching Gattaca. I'd never seen it before and - despite it not being anything like what I expected - I thought it was rather lovely (in a brutal and bleak futured sort of a way).

Plus of course it features Ethan Hawke occasionally not wearing much clothing, which to my mind is a good enough reason to watch anything. If he put in a nude scene on X-Factor for example I may even be persuaded to watch that.

The only problem with it was that I seemed to develop a weird tick whenever Uma Thurman laid even a hand on him. On each occasion my eyes would narrow and I'd mutter "bitch" under my breath.

Is this something that can be treated on the NHS do you think? Or is it perfectly normal?

Monday, December 12, 2005

Bollocks

I was doing so well.

I'd managed not to get ill at all.

Bit of a sore throat on Friday, but with the drugs I held it off on Saturday.

Sunday was all downhill, and this morning I feel like death warmed up.

Currently surrounded by vapourisers and oil burners with tea-tree oil.

I wonder if it's possible to get high on the fumes?

Sunday, December 11, 2005

And Once Again, the Unexpected

I appear to be DJing (or at least "Glorified CD Changing" if we're honest) twice this week. In the space of one phone call I'd suddenly set myself up for Windypops! tomorrow night and Retro Bar on Tuesday.

And of course Retro's quite a popular central venue on a night where usually there's a lot of people in, so in the cold light of day I'm gently bricking it.

I suspect I should probably avoid the S/A/W Gold material that night.

Friday, December 09, 2005

Muchos Mojito

The phrase "office christmas party" is one which is pretty much guaranteed to cause a chill down my spine and a tight feeling to grip my throat. The idea of spending a few uncomfortable hours with a load of people who are there out of duty and then watching them lose all inhibition and hit the dancfloor somehow has always failed to appeal.

But I did think that maybe I ought to on this occasion. New company and all that.

So what was it like?

Well, I went home at ten, stone cold sober despite twelve mojitos. Dinner consisted of two slices of cold processed turkey, some potatos and rice, the service was so slow the main course didn't arrive until just before ten, and the music got so loud you couldn't hear a word anyone said.

So all in all not terribly impressed by Guanabara.

That said the company of my colleagues was extremely enjoyable (when we could talk) and the Secret Santa present I got was inspired.

Sadly I woke up at four this morning with a raging sore throat and blocked up nose but couldn't really take the day off sick because it would look like I was just hungover.

Damnit.

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Swinging London Town

A word is due, I feel, on the subject of Girls Aloud's latest album, the wonderful "Chemistry". An album which pisses over Madonna's latest efforts from a great height and is, for me, one of the top three albums of the year.

It's a great little collection - the first of their albums I feel is consistently good. Stylish, buoyant, quirkily arranged numbers about rampant hedonism on girls nights out (with a couple of soppy little numbers thrown in for balance) it's just absolute genius from start to finish.

What makes it even better for me is that its so unashamedly English. Some of the lyrics explicitly make London the focus of their lives, so I kind of get this exhilarating feeling of that cliched swinging 60s Avengers England, dragged up to date with alcopops, discos, crop-tops and no-shame visits to the STD clinic.

It really is all rather wonderful.

The two-disc special edition is worth getting if you're interested, though. Not for the second disc (which I'm sorry to say is something of a disappointment to me) but for the incredibly camp artwork on the cover and the additional track on the main albumen.

So, once again Xenomania have done us proud. They are the gods of pop and can do no wrong.

I suggest we sacrifice Madge to them forthwith to ensure their continued goodwill.

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

The After School Detention Disco

After being grounded for Christmas, why not join us on Boxing Day safe in the knowledge that you can get as caned as you like and not have to worry coz Tuesday's a Bank Holiday too!

BOXING DAY – 26th December 2005

Last year’s Windypops Christmas special ("Banned Aid") was such a big success that we’re throwing one hell of a Christmas party once more…

Join strict headmaster Hula Fallulah as he whips up a frenzied set for all you juvenile delinquents. Joining him will be headboys Atomic Slattern and JunkLady .

Punishment: Obviously as a responsible establishment we’re not going to encourage anybody to do lines, but lashings will be given out by the headmaster to anyone he suspects has been misbehaving.

Free entry for anyone wearing uniform (school, or, you know, if you fancy coming as a puppy or something…)

Entry fee will be £2 and we’ll be open from 8pm – Super Late.

Drinks and Sprits will still be £1.50.

For more information, including directions, here is the official Windypops! Website
We take all comers (Gay, Straight, Persuadable) and genders (Male, Female, Persuadable) and frankly I have no idea what I - in my official capacity of Atomic Slattern - am going to wear or play.

It will be a good night, I'll wager. (I've decided.)

Sunday, December 04, 2005

Reasons to Hate Christmas

  1. Trying to come up with a list of things you want.
  2. Trying to get your family to come up with a list of things they want.
  3. Trying to come up with ideas for presents
  4. Buying the presents.
  5. Wrapping the presents.
  6. Wrapping the presents. (Yes, I really hate wrapping.)
  7. Trying to personalise Christmas cards with a personal message
  8. The fact it seems to start in October.
Have I missed anything?

God I'll be glad when I get to the 24th and I can just sit back and relax.

God I'm Lazy

I spent yesterday afternoon and this morning idly constructing a sequence in FruityLoops which clearly shows that I'm far too fond of PWL Extended Mixes. It's all bouncy snares, stereo-panning handclaps, bongos and tom-toms, insistent basses and it all builds to go precisely nowhere (since there's no song for it all to build up to yet).

But it made me happy anyway.

Until, of course, I went to play it on my speakers instead of my "cans" (get me!) and realised that my left and right-hand speakers are the wrong way round.

Thing is, they're right in front of me, and it would be but the work of moments to switch them over but I somehow just can't bring myself to do it since the careful arrangement of knicknacks, doohickeys and postcards on that shelf will have to be moved as well.

I'm clearly in a very procrastinatory mood today.

Friday, December 02, 2005

Yeah, Right...

"A quick drink after work" they said.

Unfortunately, as may have been previously noted, I have the breaking strain of a kit-kat.

And so I got home at 12:15, giddyingly drunk on several glasses of not-so-cheap white wine and several glasses of mildly lethal champagne cocktails, several fascinating conversations of a "more things in heaven and earth than are dreamt of in your philosophy" nature, and an extremely good massage from a tall blonde woman who randomly turned up in the bar.

What with that and the roof of my mouth being burned by a rather excellent burger, Friday stretches out before me somewhat as a small minefield of pain and impossibility.

What happened? I used to be able to do this sort of thing all the time!

Thursday, December 01, 2005

A Pattern Is Emerging

I have made no secret of my sexual orientation at my new employers. In fact as it turned out everyone was forewarned by the guy who recommended me anyway.

On my first day I met one of the other colleagues who had recently joined my team a month before. Lo and behold he's another poove.

Last week we had another gentleman join, and strangely enough we found out yesterday that he's one as well.

One of the girls in the office was amazed: "there's more of you lot than girls now," she said.

"It's alright," I assured her, "you can count us on your side."

There's a lady joining our team in a couple of weeks. We're now waiting with baited breath to see if she's gay as well. This will finally confirm whether our team's hiring policy is "must be gay" or "must like boys". Coz it's got to be one or the other.