Definition of a Geek

I’m sitting in the airport, using their cyber-cafe to type this. We’ll meet again, don’t know where, don’t know when…

currently playing: Dido - White Flag (over the cafe speakers)

Wiggle That Big Toe

Uma Thurman will Kill Bill. And if you think that the films gets amore complicated than that, then you’re sadly mistaken. For this is Tarantino’s fourth film. For this is the action film he’s always wanted to make. For this is a film that has a fight with the Crazy 88s and makes the Burly Brawl look like the sad excuse for CGI that it was. For this is a film about references, from the opening Star Trek title card to the return of Sonny Chiba. For this is a film about a yellow tracksuit. For this is a film that Harvey Weinstein must have spent a fortune bribing the MPAA to get an R-rating. For this is a film about swords, blood, gore, and revenge. No more. No less. Uma Thurman will Kill Bill.

currently playing: The Jesus & Mary Chain — Just Like Honey

Caught Being Too English

Eating pizza with a knife and fork in Pizza Hut. Laura and her friends (Leigh and the gleefully insane Anne) put me back on the straight and narrow (although it does seem awfully rude not to use the cutlery provided).

Hmm. I think I'm getting a sore throat. But I'll be in the land of Strepsils soon enough.

currently playing: Wilco — I am trying to break your heart

Your Eyes Are Burning Holes Through Me

And now the secret can be revealed: I saw Michael Stipe on Thursday. Thanks to a hot tip from Janet Jones, I knew where they were staying in Chapel Hill, so I “followed with interest” around the hotel until I spotted somebody…

The concert? It was pretty unique. While I've always been vaguely aware that R.E.M. are a band from the Southern part of the US, it only became clear last night: this was a homecoming concert. Their first gig outside of Georgia was the Cat's Cradle in Chapel Hill; Radio Free Europe was a Triangle hit, and so, last night, they were coming home.

Highlights included Michael Stipe's increasingly frantic dancing (it seems to be getting more Ian Curtis like with every performance), (and the teased-out strip which seemed to to impress the girls in our little group), discovering that I'm not the only person who loves 'Electrolite' (yay for New Adventures in Hi-Fi!), a spine-tingling version of 'Nightswimming', plus a six-song encore.

And then there were the words that I'd never expected to hear: "On drums, Mr. Bill Berry!" The crowd went wild, cheering him on at that point and when he came onstage to sing the harmonies on 'Radio Free Europe'. Then he climbed into the drum section. (At this point, I thought it might be a good idea to tell Laura exactly why everybody around her was excited 8-)) The original line-up of R.E.M. playing together again for the first time in years. Oh yes.

So, a great night. I also met another of Laura's friends yesterday, Stacie, plus one of her friends, Duane (the biggest R.E.M. fan I've ever met), and he brought one of his friends, Jennifer (it was like a Friendster chain, I suppose). And! Krispy! Kreme! Oh God. Laura kept on telling me how nice they were hot, but I never truly believed. I repent, and now worship at the altar of the glazing machine…

currently playing: R.E.M. — Little America

*clears throat*

Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! BILL BERRY! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry! Bill Berry!

currently playing: back to the crickets

Conversations Not Likely To Be Heard In Tescos

Have you ever thrown a real grenade?

I look around, and I realise that the store clerk is talking to me. "Umm, no", I say, weighing up the option of running out of the shop and leaving my purchases behind. "I have. It's cool. My dad was in the war, and he has a bunch left over. If you threw you out there -" he points to the car park out side " - it'll blow a hole in that Buick!"

"Really?" Is it just me, or is the other guy ringing up my things really slowly? Somebody help me!

"Yeah. Sometimes, we pull the pin out, and put it back in quickly. And then we have duds, so we pull the pins out of them and throw them at passers-by. Hehehe."

Ladies and gentlemen, I give you, the Harris Teeter at Carrboro.

Thursday night: not too much to report. There was drinking, more drinking, trying to look after Kavi, who had started ahead of everybody else and still wanted more to drink (plus a weird atmosphere between her and Sona, which almost derailed the night before it began), more Eliot quoting, and a ride home from the guy who hosted the party in Raleigh that I went to back in February. Here, have a picture:

currently playing: R.E.M. — Bad Day (did I mention that Bill Berry played last night?)

How Can You Mend A Broken Heart?

They’re working on it.

This may mark me out as a Font Nazi, but anyway: if you're making a professional documentary, please stay away from Comic Sans. It looks really bad as a title font. (It's not all that good as a comic lettering font, either, but that's a whole different story) Stick to Arial or Helvetica if you want a clean, simple style of type.

I had lots of things that I was going to talk about today, but after getting drenched in the rain and running back to Laura's, I've completely forgotten everything. Ho hum.

Oh! Wendy's Gift Vouchers! I noticed that they sell them today. What sort of occasion is right for Wendy's vouchers, I wonder?

— Honey! Look what I've got you for our anniversary! — $50 in Wendy's vouchers? — Yes dear. I hope your arteries choke. — Why, thank you, dear. And here's your present. — $50 in ABC vouchers? — Yes. Find the cheapest, nastiest brand of vodka, and drink yourself into the nearest emergency room.

Or something like that.

I do actually have something to write about, but I think it needs to remain secret until tomorrow, to protect my sources. (Of course, the first thing I did after getting my info was to send an email to Laura about it, who just happens to be a reporter for the college newspaper, but she has no voice today, so she couldn't tell anybody even if she wanted to 8-)).

currently playing: Life Without Buildings — Sorrow

24 Hours To Save Me

You have twenty-four hours to dissuade me from buying a digital camcorder. Go.

currently playing: Stellastarr* - Jenny

Please Don't Take Your Pictures

I think a shout out to Allison Walsh is required, considering that almost everyone I’ve spoken to in the past couple of days has said that she told them that this site was a good read. I suggest stronger glasses, but thanks for the kind words.

America needs to import Strepsils and industrial strength Lemsip.

Went to Henry's last night. It's the night that all the International students go, and I went a few times last year. It's always extremely busy, and last night was no exception. It was hard to hear the person next to you talking. But still, a good time was had; I met up with (and I apologise in advance for spelling the names wrong - hold on a second (takes off UNITAS t-shirt to look at the names)) Ai Ling, Li Li and Kira, as well as Sona and Parthe, so it turned out to a mini UNITAS reunion. Everybody seems to be leaving for the weekend, so Thursday is going to be the last night I'll be seeing most people. Almost time to go again.

For the UK readers: you'll be pleased to know it has been raining almost all day today. However, it's 20˚C, so I think I still win.

What to do with the rest of today? Hunting through the second-hand bins for a copy of JAMC's "Just Like Honey"? Some Iranian cinema? I think so.

Ninety days to go. Ninety days to go.

currently playing: Life Without Buildings — Let’s Get Out

I'm Scared To Say Hello

It’s been twenty-four hours, and nobody’s dropped dead yet, so I think I’m safe. Okay, Laura is ill, but she was ill before she ate dinner, so it can’t be blamed on me. Honest.

The recipient of the divine hammer will remain nameless. I'm building a House of Secrets here.

It took them long enough, but Hollywood finally came up with a way to get me interested in a Jim Carrey film. Damn them. Damn them all! In the end, it wasn't hard. Kate Winslet! With! Bright! Pink! Hair! I'm so easily bought.

Anyway, I went to see Lost In Translation today. After the unfair critical mauling she received for her part in Godfather III (like her father hadn't indulged in nepotism during Parts I and II), it's great to see Sofia Coppola continuing being one of the best directors around. If nothing else, this film is beautiful, showing the chaos and serenity of modern day Japan, and how it impacts on two Americans, Charlotte (Scarlett Johansson), and Bob Harris (Bill Murray), both adrift in Tokyo. It's not a gag-a-minute film; the comedy is slight, but deftly handled (as you'd probably expect with Murray being involved), and the film is equal parts sad, uplifting, despairing, and optimistic. Plus! That workshy layabout Kevin Shields does the incidental music! Bill Murray does karaoke to Roxy Music! And if you don't feel a tear coming on during the final two minutes, you don't have a heart (or, I'm a really soppy person who always falls for these sort of scenes. Hmm). If you can find a cinema playing it, I recommend that you give it a chance (it's only 102 minutes long, so it won't take too much out of your life, I promise).

UK-specific news now. Yay! They finally kicked Cox off the Breakfast Show! This is great…oh. Well, I guess I won’t be tuning back in for a little while yet, I suppose…

currently playing: Beth Orton — Feel To Believe