TOM CRUISE? Oh, Katie, Katie, Katie…

It’s one week until Election Day! Woo-hoo! I have been greatly impressed by Michael Howard’s attempt to try and make people vote against Tony Blair because…well, he smells or something. Oh and he lied. Not that Howard was ever against the War at any point, and of course, the Conservatives were very critical of the Government for not rushing in before fighting broke out.

You have to feel sorry for them, really. They’re desperately trying to show that they’d spend at least as much money on hospitals and education, turning their backs on eighteen years of Thatcherism, and their once-great trump card of “Labour will run the country into the ground and there will be dead bodies overflowing onto the streets” doesn’t work after eight fairly decent years under Labour. Their only hope, it appears, is to runs as far to the right as possible, trying hard not to be racist, but giving enough leeway to make them seem attractive to those who would consider voting BNP/NF/UKIP. I’m trying to feel a little sorry for them. On the other hand, I would really like a Lib Dem opposition…

We’ve had a few leaflets delivered for our non-event of an election next week (if Tony Baldry isn’t re-elected, there will be lots of hats eaten). Firstly - the Lib Dems need to hire a graphic designer. I know, I know, substance-over-style and all that, but come on: about four different fonts, images in a layout that looked as if it had been ‘helped’ by MS Word, and obvious “INSERT LOCAL BITS HERE” text. Just horrible.

I do love reading leaflets from the far-right parties. It makes me smile to spot all the spelling and grammatical errors they’ve made while calling for the expulsion of foreigners from our lands. Also! Fun policies! UKIP will pull us out of the EU immediately and station the army outside the Channel Tunnel - JUST IN CASE! The National Front will kick out ‘left-wing subversion in our schools, trade-unions, and mass-media”, as well as banning all imports. That’ll work out well when we run out of petrol. But I’m sure they have a plan. The prize, though, goes to the BNP, who, obviously saw the fox-hunting fight as a challenge. If elected, the BNP will outlaw opinion polls. A round of applause, please, for making the concept of yogic flying sound sensible.

Also, a leaflet from Your Party, whose raison d’etre is “tell us what you want us to do. We have no policies.” I mean, you have to admire the idea of representing the people, but come on, you have to stand for something! You might as well be an Auton…

But! I shall leave you with a picture for my sister, who has learnt to love the thought of this man dancing in a dress during the past few days…

currently playing: Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds – Where The Wild Roses Grow

Go UNC!

For fighting and winning (this round at least) against a RIAA court order!

currently playing: Smashing Pumpkins – 1979

DVD Authoring!

I got the proof my of my DVD chapter today! Admittedly, it’s all in German, but it does look fancy and professional…

currently playing: Smashing Pumpkins – Thirty-Three

Link Thing by Amerie

Consumers feel frustrated by legal music downloads! Music industry whistles…

The Bush Administration continues to have some fun and games while recasting the White House in the manner of Boss Tweed.

Make fire with just a can and some chocolate! (You can eat the chocolate afterwards too)

Yay for Benedict VIII. Or perhaps not.

Doctor Who update: I’m glad they’re not having Keith Boak back next series. He just can’t handle action scenes. But! UNIT! A classic Who cliffhanger resolved in ten seconds! And the promo for next week! NERD-GLEEEE! “WHY DON’T YOU JUST DIE!?!”

(Ian has been replaced by a gibbering loon. Stop sniggering, Judas.)

(Yes, this week, I will be doing Lee & Herring catchphrases.)

currently playing: Clor — Love + Pain

A Question

Does T4 hold incriminating photographs on Simon Popworld? I had the misfortune to switch on the TV to The Morning After Show this afternoon (yes, even the title’s a mistake), and he had this “please, will somebody shoot me, and put an end to this unbearable pain?” look in his eyes. But still, the little spat between him and The World’s Smuggest Pop Star was quite amusing (Mr. Daniel Beddingfield, who seemed to think that he could say ‘I’m a bachelor’ to explain why he has a toilet in his bedroom. Daniel, I think, even with the ways that record companies avoid paying you money, that you could probably afford a separate bathroom…).

I apologise for the lack of updates this week. I have a few ideas for next week, and I’ll try and get the avatar code fixed as well. Plus the usual bobbins and stealing other people’s material. And then I got off the bus…aaaah!

currently playing: Eminem – Just Lose It

Yum!

Cinnamon rolls! Or: what I baked today...

Job Hunt…

Finally heard from Salford today. Apparently, it was a close-run thing, but another candidate had NetWare experience, and that gave him the edge. On the one hand, yes, a little disappointing, but at least this time, it wasn’t my ineptitude in the interview that doomed me…

currently playing: Dubstar – Stars

That's Fine By Me!

sniff...this was a no-smoking cinema…where Ridley Scott ruled…

Tom's Kitchen!

And this is at the end of the night!

Manchester: A Slight Return

In my defence, it didn’t rain all the time I was there. In fact, Sunday morning and this evening have been pleasant and sunny. We’ll skip over the icy winds and persistent drizzle.

Before I go any further, I wish to mark the passing of two important Mancunian landmarks. It pains me to reveal that the Manchester Odeon is no more. It was our Friday night destination for almost three years, with a main screen that was over fifteen feet longer than the Mauritania, and now it's gone. Perhaps its biggest claim to fame is that it's visible in one scene in 24 Hour Party People, where some of the characters talk in a cafe (yes, I know that's not really narrowing it down too much - it's been a while since I've seen it!). Incidentally, the cafe has also gone now.

But, even worse, to those of us who were held rapt by the adventures of Skel Nonch and Erk Dre, is that Halon Menswear has also disappeared. Yes, the Oxford Road no longer caters for the upscale man. To pile insult on the injury, it's been replaced by a Starbucks (I'm also reliably informed that it's actually a surprisingly good Starbucks, so perhaps the good men of Halon's influence still holds sway over the building).

Well, what else can I say about the trip, after those bombshells? Not much, to be honest; it wasn't a weekend of Big Happenings and Debauchery, although we did partly run the risk of having an electrocuted Tom while he was rewiring his kitchen. Instead, a leisurely, gentle stroll thorugh old haunts and seeing new things, spending far too much time in shops, and trying hard to avoid having to wear a gown while in Hall. It was a little weird being back in St. Anselm again; while I wasn't in my old room, I was close to it, and had to use the shower block that I used previously. It was a little trip back in time, especially when I walked back from the city on Sunday afternoon.

I found some interesting clothes shops this weekend (cheap, too!), but I'm on a self-imposed ban from buying any new clothes at the moment. Partly, this is because I'm going to America in a few months, and everything will be much cheaper there, but mostly, it's because my current idea of a good outfit involves dressing up like the Fifth Doctor and his Edwardian cricketer fashion. So, for my sake and all the others that have to be around me, I'm not buying anything until it passes, lest I deck myself out in white striped jumpers and straw hats. It's for the best. Although, if my next phase is Gothic Lolita, you're probably going to cry out for the return of the straw...

The Northern Quarter has now become fashionable, instead of the small bit of town where the comic shop is hidden. There's lots of fancy new shops, but Manchester is still Manchester: next to a ultra-cool design studio sits a sheet metal welding workshop. And the comic shop is still there, as is Vinyl Exchange. I almost bought a M.I.A. promo, but decided that I'd wait until the album was out properly in a week or so. Then I spent far too much time in Magma. Magma is a book shop that caters primairly for graphic designers and the hangers on who think the books and toys are really interesting (guilty). The only downside is that it doesn't have any seats, although, as Phil pointed out, it's probably a safety measure to prevent Tom and I from spending all day in there.

Lots of goths. That's not a bad thing, mind you. Fancy costumes and teardrop make-up! Livens a Saturday morning up, that's for sure. Also, I think there has been a red dye explosion over vast swathes of Fallowfield; I can honestly say that 1 in 3 girls, at least, was sporting dyed red hair. Not too much blue, sadly.

So, you've got this far, and you're probably wondering: "But what about the interview? Red hair and weird asides about old fashions are all very well, but what about the point of this piece?" To which I must point out, just in passing, that our Italian waiter on Friday night seemed to take it as a personal insult that I didn't want parmasean cheese on my pasta. It was as if I had besmirched his family's reputation. Not wishing to cause an international incident over a condiment (is Parmaean cheese a condiment? Perhaps not. It's more a topping, I'd imagine.Although you often find it with the condiments, so possibly...but that might be a debate best saved for later), I relented, and everybody was all smiles once more. Splendid, you mught say.

"BUT WHAT ABOUT THE INTERVIEW?" Oh, if you insist. Although there isn't much to say, really. I went, I talked, they asked questions, and it was over in twenty minutes. They didn't ask the usual question ("So, there's this giant hole in your CV. Want to talk about it?"), and I have no idea how I did really. I think I answered the technical questions reasonably well. and the more general stuff seemed to go okay. I don't believe I'm going to get the job, though. It seemed too quick to be all that positive.

And now! I'm writing this on a train! Plugged into a powerpoint on the side of the carriage looking like one of those sad people who does their office work on the way home. It should have Wi-Fi installed.Then I could do other stuff while heading back. But I'm done now, so I'll hit save and fall asleep instead. Pictures tomorrow…

currently playing: Angelica – Why Did You Let My Kitten Die