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Saturday, June 17, 2006


now i may have mentioned i don't watch tv (alrhough this is a bit of dancing on the head of pin type thing as i do watch the television set but i am only watched stuff that has been recorded), so i am a probably not the right person to speak about how the bbc spends it's license fee (not because i don't watch tv, but because i am not paying a licsense fee..._
but hey ho lets go and write about it anyway.
it is claimed the bbc is paying jonathon ross £6 million a year for the next three years. "wossy" seems to be an affable chap, he likes comics and he makes lewd jokes (so the only differences between me and him then is: he is funny and gets paid sheds load more than i will ever get paid). i can't quite see why you would pay someone that amount of money for doing nothing more than interviewing people.
the only reason to pay him that sort of money is to tap into his celebrity and therefore drag people to sit in front of the tv to watch him, which if the bbc was a commercial broadcaster you could understand, but the bbc doesn't have to get bums on sears in order to get advertisers to spend money with them. the bbc is paid by the license fee. so rather than providing overpriced entertainers with an easy payday they should be provifing a range of programming to appeal to the various audiences in teh country.
the price of having ross on the bbc team is similiar to the cost of increasing the bbc's world service in the middle east from 12 to 24 hours.

the growth of celebrity seems to just continue. warhol's 15 minutes of fame is soon going to be turned on it's head and we will be talking of our 15 minutes away from fame (i say this knowing that someone has put me up for a tv reality style programme...) many months ago prince charles got pilloried because he said too many of todays youth were expecting to be getting fame but without having to pay their dues, that all that was need was to be "discovered" and everything would be ticketyboo!
while i can see where charlie was coming from (though ironic that someone whose position is hereditary would be talking about people wanting it given to them...) you can also see where the kids are coming from because with the advent of reality tv there has been a proliferation of talentless no hopers who have become celebrites.

so maybe compared with jade wossy is worth the dosh....

Tuesday, June 13, 2006


the saturday trip also included some other interesting experiences and photos.
while there were few people on the streets the joy of almost having london all to myself was ruined by the heat, lucky for you dear reader i have not gone on too much about how i hate the summer, but there is time yet for that!

so from this walking around town seeing art here are some pictures.
one of the pictures you won't see (because i didn't get it) was of a young lady who walked past me her slight skimpy summer dress dancing happily as she clipped and clopped along. each flick of the dress revealing lovely pert bottom cheeks.
as i thought about taking a picture of such a gorgeous sight i heard a voice behind me asking if i was taking photos for "east end life" (a local free newspaper), no i am not i answered the youg asian youth, with an eye on the lovely receding bottom. he asked if i could take a picture of him. i did.
it's not a bad photo (i shan't be showing it here) but not as good as the one of the bottom could have been......
(i am incredibly curious to know whether or not she knew she was flashing...)

anyway enjoy these pictures from the day england won their opening game of the world cup, but in doing so earned the scorn of many fans.


i was in town on saturday, the same time that england were playing their opening match of the world cup.
i was wandering around the regent street area, off to see some art. normally it is a street that is packed with desperate shoppers and congested cars. this day it was almost waiting for the tumble weed....

later on, having moved over to carnaby street i see a shop that specialises in african music, it's shop windows not showing any merchandise just the colourful shirts of the various african teams, but the shop door carrying the following legend....

Monday, June 12, 2006


the situation in guantánamo was one that had become untenable many many months ago.
because the detainees have not been charged there is no indication of their guilt or complicity. because they have been in captivity for so long that they can no longer have useful information that can have any bearing on the war against terror. in fact the ongoing imprisonment of the various individuals appear to be no more than vindictive bullying.

so when 3 detainees commit suicide it should be a signal that something is not quite right.

leave it to the americans to be able to spin this.

colleen graffy, who demonstrates that although she maybe involved with “public diplomacy” she manages not to understand the idea of diplomacy, in fact she shows a propensity to open mouth and insert foot. ms graffy says of the suicides: "it does sound like this is part of a strategy - in that they don't value their own lives, and they certainly don't value ours; and they use suicide bombings as a tactic….taking their own lives was not necessary, but it certainly is a good pr move."

ah if only mz graffy had stopped and thought before she spoke she might not have said such guff. the joy of it all is that her statement plays upon the fear of an overarching conspiracy theory against america that is so sophisticated that they can contact the detainees in order to plan and encourage them to commit joint suicide.
indeed her own comments have probably been the pr coup that al-qaida that has been praying for. she has basically told the world that america really doesn’t care about the detainees in anyway shape or form.

ironically these statements come at a time when many of america’s allies in the war on terror are saying that guantánamo is actually harming america’s position in the world.
but as we all know america is not interested in listening to others, and in ignoring the voices of dissent from supporters they just make the case for their radical opponents even stronger.

(interesting sidebars: just finished listening to melanie phillips on radio 5 (a change from the world cup) she is the uk's equivalent of anne coulter - but not quite so mad - she has a new book out called "londonanistan" it sounds like one of those books that i will find i am agreeing with some of it but cursing most of it. more and more though it seems to be part of the idea that we are indeed stepping on the path that leads to a clash of civilisations.

in the freakonimics book (which is not as good as it is made out) but it does make the point that money and attention can be fed into the idea of terrorism not because terrorism is in fact dangerous per se, but that the perceived fear of it that grips us, as such mz graffy is just feeding in to the whole fear cycle.

Sunday, June 11, 2006


so it has started: the world cup is underway and the boys have got their first win under their belt.
now i have to admit that i am not a great football fan nor am i a great believer that in the theory that your team winning makes a difference to your life or the life of the community in anything other than the short term. (the years of supporting the london leopards basketball team-taught that no matter what the result i was still going back to work the next day.)
that being said the world cup is a hard sell for me, but this year i already hate it. the reason i don’t like it has nothing to do with the football, it has to do with all the stuff that is talked about the football and fans.

we live in a celebrity driven world and the media has to fill airtime and newsprint with stories about celebrity. for most footballers are easy game (geddit) they are generally attractive young men who are adulated and envied for their skills and their lifestyles. footballers get well rewarded for running around and kicking a ball. what they are paid to do is be footballers, they are not paid to be role models yet their every foible is put under scrutiny (strangely this sort of attention is not paid to the editors of newspapers, people who really do have an influence on people’s lives…) pity the poor footballer on the one hand they are great and on the other hand they are failures, and this is never so true when they are plating for england in a world cup. hero to zero in the space of a paragraph or a news story.
the run up to the world cup has pretty much given the tournament to england, yet after the first game (which they won) they are not fit to lick the boots of the class of ’66. it must be confusing to be an english player.

if it were just the building of the players up just so they are more vulnerable to the (inevitable) knock down that will follow if they do not win the world cup, it wouldn’t be so bad. but it is not just the players that come under attack; the other target is the fans.

it seems that if you are a supporter of england you are racist, nationalistic and a hooligan. the media make a song and dance about the fans behaving, while all the while hoping that there is some trouble so that they can fill pages about the hooligan british abroad. (tonight i listened to a story that said the british can’t drink – even though we have had numerous stories talking about how we are a binge drinking nation…)

of course the fact that english fans want to carry the cross of saint george immediately brands them as racist, for the simple fact that the english flag has been co-opted by the bnp. now i might be missing the point here but the only reason that the bnp have been able to get away with it is that the powers that be, such as local councils, have shied away from the use of the english flag and of englishness.
even the welsh police authority have gotten into the act saying that the display of the english flag by supports of england in wales could be seen as offensive. meanwhile on radio 5 steve bunce (a sports commentator) proclaims that because of growing up in brixton the cross of saint george will always be associated with racist thugs, no one challenges him. a cheap shot is allowed to land.

english fans draping themselves in the cross of st george are seen as nationalistic, turn that into the flag of trinidad and tobago and it becomes a celebration of a nation’s achievement. when the scots, irish or welsh wave their flags they are never accused of nationalism. their patriotism is fine.

the other crime laid at the feet of the english supporter is that they are hooligans and cause trouble wherever they go. the media are at pains to ask the fans not to get into bother, don’t sing songs that may cause offence, don’t mention the war etc. we all know that what the media really wants is a story of how the english fans caused untold damage, for the media well behaved fans is a non-story. it seems that the whole world over the only fans ever to cause a problem have been english. mind you the indie carried a small paragraph the other day of how a korean footballs fan was attack in germany by german fans. if it had been an english fan who had done the attacking it would have been a story over several pages with lots of hand wringing and “we told you so”, others doing it is a non-story and it ruins the impact of potential english thug stories.

it is this aspect of the damned if we do damned if we don’t of the media that has gotten up my nose and has meant that the world cup will be a chore. if england does not win the world cup then it will have been disastrous. by having fans supporting england we have once again proved that we are a nation of racist nationalist thugs and that is before one of the beered up footie fans throws a punch. once there is a bit of argy bargy (no matter who causes it) it will be a national shame and we should all be wearing sackcloth…

at least this year i have had to listen to people tell me that they can’t support england because of some political reason or another and so they had to pick another team

so for a few weeks get behind the boys and cheer.
come on england (in-ger-land in-ger-land in-geeeeeeeeet-land…. come on you know this one join in the chorus – you beauties….)

Thursday, June 08, 2006


from a recent wandering around near work.
this is the area that is going to be transformed by the olympics. it also means that my job will either be moved or be cancelled.
so lets hear it for the olympics!

(there will be more from this series of pics at a later date.... you lucky lucky people!)

Wednesday, June 07, 2006


gah! bah! gak! urgh!
i am not a morning person and i am not a morning person who wants to be around others.
but i am trying to change my lifestyle so that i am at least getting into work on time, if not early.
this means going to bed earlier than normal for me (but then 2am was always a stupid time to stay up to!)it also means leaving work early (no bad thing), which should mean i get up at a reasonable hour.

it’s a plan, but i am not liking it.
expect to start seeing some interesting morning photos.
(this assumes i can keep this up.)

Sunday, June 04, 2006


after a bit of a break i am back and the world of blogs can breath a sigh of relief.
have to say may was a bit of a shit month - nothing quite went right (to be honest nothing went drastically wrong) and nothing of worth was achieved. it was in short a bland month.
true in that time i have not had a chance to vent my spleen over the local elections, john "2shags" prescott, the world cup, wembly stadium, the drought and so on.
still be thankful i am back just in time to start on my annual moan about summer.

so june will be business as normal.
i am back.