Friday, 20 June 2008


To celebrate my significant udders completion of Dante's very own art inferno, we're doing a look back at the past four years worth (actually this blog is barely a year old) of galleries, shows, blockbusters, you name it I probably scoffed at it.

I'm both shocked and awe-somed at the power of persuasion evoked to drag me to all these cathedrals of culture. Good times, good, arty times:

Darren Almond - Fire Under the Snow

Double Agent - ICA

Matthew Barney - Drawing Restraint

Bridge Art Fair 07

Louis Bourgeois and Doris Salcedo

Lynette Wallworth - Hold Vessel 2

Wednesday, 18 June 2008

Two fringes enter, one fringe leaves

I’m watching Fringe, J.J Abrams latest attempt to mystify. Like all things, there are patterns if you look hard, or should that be, obsessively enough. My girlfriend got a fringe for her degree show, (shameless plug 1 and 2) I don't know why, but that makes it sound like she contracted a disease.

Now, if you regularly viddy this blog you’ll know Abrams and I don’t get on. We fell out over a fiver he never paid back and also his puny attempts to set up a mystery, within a mystery, within…ad infinitum, like a baffling plot version of a Gooducken. I’ll write a 140 character review via twitter here, just to make it more interesting.

Tuesday, 17 June 2008

No bioengineering, just aging

I feel like Old Snake. I spotted three grey hairs the other day, my vision's deteriorated to the point that I’m now one of those people who holds a menu at arms length and I’ve noticed how noisy Central LDN is. Why do these seemingly innocuous things seem so frightening? I’m 22!

We’re going to do some ‘real time’ blogging here, I'm doing a search for ‘stress related grey hair’ and praying to the Old Gods that once hair goes grey, through trauma or otherwise, it stays that way. Let’s see now…

“While we've all blamed our fading locks on stress, in reality, there is no proven link, said Jeffrey Miller.”

"The process normally begins in one's 30s, but gray hair may become visible as early as one's teens," said Miller.

Oh shit. Well, if I have any talents to my name, its being able to delude myself into thinking that something seemingly negative, can be an outright awesome-wells, positive. Grey Fox, (ties in nicely with the Metal Gear reference I made at the beginning of this post) was an exoskeleton wearing, laser sword wielding, ninja, after all. Excellent, I’ve started already.

Monday, 16 June 2008

I misjudged you, demon

Paranormal, tentacled terrors from the pit, no, this isn’t a reference to the 70s toilet in my flat but my new love. Boy Hell, I mean, Hellboy. Its unsettling that, apart from inheriting several physical and physiological traits from my dad, I’ve also inherited an uncontrollable tendency for irrational prejudices when it comes to certain franchises.

It happened with Firefly, despite the love that dare not speak its name, (not in public at any rate) for Buffy and Angel. Again, I suffered this affliction when considering Clone Wars despite knowing some Samurai Jack episodes verbatim. And so, it follows, like a chicken burger that has stewed under a heat lamp, follows too much Bombay Safire, that I would feel the same way about Hellboy.

The Hellboy revulsion is easier to dissect. My first real exposure was a giant bust (for the non-geek this amounts to a classical bust but of a popular comic/anime character) of Hellboy on the desk of a tard I did a degrading summer job for. Negative enforcement number one. The second exposure came via the film version, which, despite being directed by Del Toro loses a lot of the elements that future me would come to love about the graphic novels. The references to Lovecraft and blending of folklore were watered down for a heavier emphasis on action…lame.

So, the moral...the moral? Amoral. Toril, that’s a planet apparently. Don’t judge a graphic novel character by the sawn off horns on his head.

Tuesday, 10 June 2008

Everybody's gotta grow up sometime, bum, bum, bum

I've moved in with my significant udder, got a permanent job and have governance, both physical and spiritual, over the cat. It's all competing for geek out time. I've even started to contemplate some sort of geek schedule.

Fitting in an hour of Battlestar every week shouldn't be too hard. And, lets Cylon it, once that's over I'll have already rounded up all the episodes of Deadwood and tapped every series of The Wire. Maybe I could buy the Cracker DVD box set? After all, I was only a wee one when the series originally aired. The only episode I can remember, with any clarity, starred Robert Carlyle as a Liverpool supporter who moonlighted as an anarchist bomber. I still duck and cover whenever I hear a scouse accent.

Graphic novels: a friend of mine works at Forbidden Planet, so there's a social excuse to fit that in. I've got some time before the next volumes of The Walking Dead, Fables and Ultimates get released. There's no rush to venture into the BO steeped caverns. They really need to give out deodorant to the more 'special' patrons.

Films: I watched Iron Man on das interweb recently. I also made the mistake of going to see the latest Indy film at the picture house. I thought this time, this time it'll be different. No idiots' mobiles going off in the back row, no middle class twits mindlessly twittering away (in the old fashioned sense) about the price of organic Soya beans. But every time, every bloody time. Cash and time I'll never get back. Still, the significant udder has a free pass to the Mezzanine. I'm gonna go all art house on your asses.

That leaves games. Its officially my job to keep up with what's going on in the gaming world, so maybe a new console isn't such an outlandish concept. I dunno, maybe I should wait till winter and then I can justify staying in with the sweet sounds of the console fan, as I shower fiery death on whatever.

Monday, 9 June 2008

Nutters on ice (and boats)

After the unsuccessful ‘week of snobbery,’ I found myself on the opposite end of the duhhhh, spectrum. This week, apart from moving to west LDN, I’ve become an avid fan of ‘The Deadliest Catch’ and ‘Ice Truckers.’ Both are set in the Northern wastes of America where even berserkers would have a hard time coping.

‘The Deadliest Catch’ is my favourite though. Real men, (with beard growth and everything) embark on an insane journey into the Baring Sea to catch King Crab. No white whales then.

Watching the same labour intensive process of baiting cages, chucking them overboard, only to come back a few hours later is hypnotising. Rinse and repeat. It’s surprising and maybe a bit worrying, how baited my breath becomes when each cage is pulled up. The difference between riches or rags is directly equated to how many snappy claws are housed within each metallic coffin.

The rewards can be great. One of my favourite directors, Richard Linklater financed his first film working on an oil rig. And I can see the monetary incentive to work on an oil rig, ocean trawler, ice truck etc. Still, you’d have to be pretty nuts and a real man. Having a blog about geeky pop culture references means I fail to muster the right musk.

Wednesday, 4 June 2008

A week of snobbery

Bloggers were recently participating in a week sans technology, for err, some sort of mental detox. I didn’t have the luxury of volunteering for this ‘unconnected week,’ thanks to my good friends Virgin Media.

That being said, and mainly to stick it to Virgin Media and all this detox rubbish, honestly, would you cut off your nose to see what a scentless world was like? I can tell you now, no Internet = absolute lameness in every sense. There, my thesis is complete.

Right, so, as part piss take and part, why not, I’ll be having a week of snobbery. It’ll go a little like this: One week of watching only BBC4, (More4 would have been included but they have some shockingly un-snobby shows) a week of listening to Radio 4 and the World Service (plays and shizz on Radio 7), visiting only TED ala the web and catching up with some dense philosophy (a bit of the New Statesman thrown it too).

What will become of me?

My girlfriend, the (specific) gamer hater

A look of disgust, no, that’s too strong, maybe its pity. I don’t understand it. Its not like she doesn’t enjoy playing games. We’ve ignored many a clock face exacting vengeance on Burnout, Mario Kart and Soul Calibur.

Racing, fighting and intense competition, these are her purveyors of pleasure. She is the personification of competition. Nail clawing, controller throwing competition.

To understand the look of pity, I needed to analyse what I was playing that could be so offensive. RPGs and FPS games mostly. To the uninitiated, mowing down waves of Nazis, picking the opportune time to use a health potion or the satisfaction as you bing a character (level up) might be lost.

And I can see how it could look unproductive. After all, what are the lives of my fellow WW2 buddies, the denizens of Ivalice or the world for that matter, when there are trips to the fortress of Home Base to be undertaken?

Still, it could be worse. You might find yourself trapped in a game, Tron style.