keresaspa: (Percy Sugden)
There's a song where some bloke with a fake accent sings "hold me tight and whisper love is forever" playing everywhere, all the young ladies are wearing bits of plastic in their hair for some reason and my breath permanently smells of diluted Harp and Dorchester Superkings. Not literally but it might as well be the case as I'm forced to fall back on a survey, just like in the old days (assuming it doesn't contravene the terms of the new Russian language-only agreement that I was just forced to sign on here). So anyway:

· What kind of a mood are you in right now? Meh.
· What's been on your mind lately? Non-payment of debts by a certain airline and non-delivery of Bandcamp orders.
· What has been the best part of the past week? The second goal in the match I just got back from. Best I've seen live all season. Some youngster named Pearse who ran along the edge of the box and then stroked the ball into the top corner for my local club Rosario against Grove United in an NAFL 1B match.
· What has been the worst part of the past week? Phoning the flybe call centre this morning. God but I hate the phone.
· Where are you? In my flippity floppity floop.
· What did you last eat? A rather unpleasant cottage pie.
· What did you last drink? Chocolate Moo.
· How many hours of sleep did you get last night? Three at best. I just don't sleep any more.
· What are you wearing? Green jumper, blue pyjama bottoms with a grey stripe, fawn socks and brown sandals. Every bit as stylish and dashing as it sounds.
· What did you do yesterday? All sorts of pointless nonsense.
· What are your plans for tomorrow? Respiration and that.
· Have you learned anything new lately? Theoretically, how to replace a broken handle on a window but I won't know if I've genuinely learned it until the new one arrives and I undertake the changeover.
· Who was your last text from? Hotmail, who have suddenly become security conscious to wanky levels.
· What was the last website you visited besides this one? RateYourMusic.com
· Who did you last compliment? What did you say? Can't remember. There was a homosexual barista rather taken with my moustache a while ago so maybe that. (Read that wrong didn't I - who did I last compliment. No idea, never do, haven't the confidence.)
· When was the last time you exercised? I threw the weights around the other night, to little purpose.
· Are you listening to any music right now? No, TV's on in the background.
· What's the last thing you Googled? "Newington Dundela abandoned". A match was abandoned recently after some nutjob slapped the ref and I was looking to see what will happen as a consequence as it might impact on my mob.
· Is there anyone in the room with you? No.
keresaspa: (Homer rage)
Apologies for (yet another) extended period of radio silence but shit's a bit too real at the moment for me to get into. Anyway I'll quickly do this meme that I requested from [livejournal.com profile] purpledonna sometime around 1992 and then get out of your hair. On the off-chance that anybody remembers my existence and wants a letter do let me know.

Something I hate : Objectivism - hateful and hate-filled, bitter, Satanic bollocks. It's a mystery to me why people so consumed with contempt for their fellow humans even bother living.

Something I love : Oranges. Love is a bit strong but I do enjoy them and O is a hard letter.

Somewhere I've been : Ormeau Road. I live on it. As far as I can recall I've never been to any town that begins with O. Not even Omagh; I haven't lived.

Somewhere I'd like to go : Omdurman. It's always been my lifelong dream to visit Sudan. Actually I'm lying, I just can't think of anywhere beginning with O I want to visit.

Someone I know : Oliver, the permanently angry and belligerent deputy headmaster of my primary school. He seemed quite intimidating at the time but he just needed to get laid, really. Could be dead for all I know.

A film I like : Oklahoma. Just kidding, no idea. I know nowt about films.

2015 thing

Jan. 1st, 2016 09:03 pm
keresaspa: (Lester and Eliza)
Two days running? God, it's been years since that sort of rot. Anyway:

1. What did you do in 2015 that you'd never done before?
Left the Atlantic Archipelago (that's British Isles to you imperialists).

2. Did you keep your new years' resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
Never do, never will.

3. Did anyone close to you give birth?
No.

4. Did anyone close to you die?
Two of the Donegal Celtic mob died - one from cancer, the other took his own life. To be honest though I didn't know either of them that well.

5. What countries did you visit?
France, Scotland and England. I actually visited a personal best of 24 towns and cities this year, with Larne, Newry, Dun Laoghaire, Banbridge, Paris and Dunfermline all new to me.

6. What would you like to have in 2016 that you lacked in 2015?
Cash on demand, same as every year.

7. What dates from 2015 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
I'm very stereotypically male about remembering dates so none.

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?
Dunno.

9. What was your biggest failure?
Dunno.

10. Did you suffer illness or injury?
Usual haemochromatosis plus my vertigo has kicked into overdrive to the point where massive turns are now a daily occurrence and some can last for several hours. I've started having the odd fall as well.

11. What was the best thing you bought?
As noted recently, Mirel Wagner albums.

12. Whose behaviour merited celebration?
Oh, you're all great.

13. Whose behaviour made you appalled and depressed?
Here's a shock - Sinn Fein. I'm not sure if I mentioned that at any time last year.

14. Where did most of your money go?
Music as ever. Trips and that too I suppose.

15. What did you get really, really, really excited about?
Don't be silly.

16. What song will always remind you of 2015?
"The Road and the Miles to Dundee" by Jim Reid And The Foundry bar Band or "Pasties and Cream" by Brenda Wootton. Neither are available online though so I can't link to them (is it just me or has YouTube removed about half of its music videos in the last week or so?).

17. Compared to this time last year, are you:
a) happier or sadder? about the same
b) thinner or fatter? ditto
c) richer or poorer? ditto

18. What do you wish you'd done more of?
Nothing in particular.

19. What do you wish you'd done less of?
Again, nothing springs to mind.

20. How will you be spending Christmas?
It's already over so....

21. What was your favourite month of 2015?
No idea. August maybe.

22. Did you fall in love in 2015?
Don't be daft.

23. How many one-night stands?
Mind your own business.

24. What was your favourite TV programme?
I've pretty much given up on TV these days. I don't even bother watching the football on Saturday nights sometimes any more.

25. Do you hate anyone now that you didn't hate this time last year?
I don't think so, although my opinion of Simon Danczuk is really starting to harden.

26. What was the best book you read?
No idea. Been mostly short stories and non-fiction this year. Of the former William Beckford's "Vathek" was probably the best.

27. What was your greatest musical discovery?
Mirel Wagner, as discussed yesterday.

28. What did you want and get?
A new article to get published in When Saturday Comes (in shops 14th January).

29. What did you want and not get?
The new Extreme Noise Terror album, although a copy is winging its way to me from Germany. I'll believe it when I get it and not before as it's fast becoming the new "Things may Come and Things May Go, But the Art School Dance Goes on for Ever" for me.

30. What was your favourite film of this year?
I think I saw a total of two films on TV this year (Midnight Run on ITV Four one night and Despicable Me dubbed into French in Paris) and none in the cinema. Any interest I ever had in films has long since died off.

31. What did you do on your birthday?
Watched Nortel defeat Mossley 4-2 at the Mossley playing fields in the second round of the Border Regiment Cup. It was even less glamorous than it sounds.

32. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
As ever, isn't this essentially the same as question six?

33. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2015?
I wouldn't. I haven't changed a lick of my image in years but to call it a "fashion concept" would be completely ludicrous. If pushed I'll go with "man who looks a lot older than he is dressing to his wrongly assumed age".

34. What kept you sane?
Assuming I am sane, then the match.

35. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?
Demi Lovato. I may have the makings of a dirty old man. But come on, eh?!

36. What political issue stirred you the most?
The quiet death of Irish republicanism and its rebirth as Tory collaborationism, all with the tacit approval of the victims of this development.

37. Who did you miss?
Cigs as ever.

38. Who was the best new person you met?
Can't think of anyone. I've not really met anyone new this year.

39. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2015.
No.

40. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year.
"Poor old horse, he must die".
keresaspa: (Türkan Şoray)
Music questions, possibly already answered years ago )
keresaspa: (Huffy beardy weirdy)
Lousy "winter" weather (for which read non-stop torrential) combined with a woefully underfunded and poorly maintained stock of football pitches meant that the local game was decimated today. For my part I walked out to the Oval to watch Glentoran reserves face Queens in the Intermediate Cup, taking the mother of all soakings in Templemore Avenue, only to get there and find the place locked up. No custodian to announce "game's off, mate", no note on the gate, not even a local spide to tell me "there's no game the day, beardy-buck", nothing. Very shoddy way to treat people who make the effort to turn out for your lesser games, Glens.

A cross-town dash meant I made it in time for the second half of the West Belfast Brigade Derby at the Shankill's Hammer pitch, where the plastic surface is impervious to water and where I was able to watch Albert Foundry overwhelm their Shankill United hosts in front of a packed ground to take a 3-0 victory. It was only when I got home that I found out that Shankill had scored three in the first half that I missed and it had actually been a 3-3 draw but I suppose one half is better than nowt. Still, it really is a pain in the arse just how much simple rain buggers up the local game here, given how poorly maintained the pitches are. They really need to dig money up from somewhere to kit everybody out with the plastic because Cliftonville and Crusaders play no matter what and indeed Seaview seems to have a match every couple of days with no ill-effects (Crusaders and Newington play their home games there, as occasionally do Carrick Rangers for some reason, most non-league cup finals are held there as are various women's football matches). Because of all these postponements Donegal Celtic won't be playing again until 22 February with their last game having been on 4th January and the last home game on 28th December. Nigh on two months with no income will be a bitter blow; the club were lucky to survive the summer's financial meltdown but it would be a bloody shame if something as lame as the weather killed them off.

Now here's a blast from the past. When did we stop doing these and why?

Read more... )
keresaspa: (Brigitte Bardot)
All I seem to have been doing on this thing recently is leeching ideas off [livejournal.com profile] caddyman in order to fill up entries. Well, today is to be another instalment in that rip-off sequence as the man himself has presented another of his memes and I'm jumping on the bandwagon. The basic plot of this one is to provide eight facts about yourself. Apologies in advance for the boring nature of these but I'm a boring chap I'm afraid.

1) I had only just started walking when I toddled my way through a glass door in the house in which I was born. Whilst I cheated death that day it had been by a whisker as had the cuts gone an inch in either direction I would have severed major blood vessels and most likely carked it. The scars left behind on my forehead were very prominent until fairly recently but now the deep worry lines that have sprung up on my forehead have largely merged with them, rendering them almost invisible.

2) Around the age of five I took part in, and won, a foot race against other children from my school. I was rewarded with a bag of sweets for my trouble. Hardly a big deal in itself, but it must be balanced by the "bulky" frame I have sported ever since and the complete aversion to running that has dominated my thinking. I reckon Douglas Bader with have a chance in a foot race against me these days.

3) I was about 12 when I first decided to become politically aware but I didn’t fully embrace communism until the age of around 19. As a youngster I was a firmly moderate social democrat whose political allegiances belonged to the Labour Party and the SDLP. I began to move to the left around the time Blair took over Labour (the two occurrences were not connected however) when I was about 14 and from then until about 17 I looked more to the likes of the SWP and the IRSP, whilst maintaining a strong admiration for the authoritarian Left in the developing world. By the age of 17 I was more open to communism and finally declared for it around 19, following a very very brief flirtation with anarchism.

4) At GCSE I was put forward for the Additional Mathematics exams but, after getting a B in my one year normal maths, I completely lost the thread of what was going on and effectively gave up. As a result in both papers for the subject, which were two hours long, I was finished after about fifteen minutes and had an hour and three quarters to just sit there bored (my school wouldn’t permit you to leave when you were done). The fact that I got an E in the subject (a fail in my day, not so sure now) rather than the U I deserved probably pinpoints the exact moment when they started marking GCSEs too easily.

5) Although I now find it impossible to go a Saturday without attending a football match I didn’t actually go to my first live match until the age of 16 (Cliftonville v Standard Liege in the Intertoto Cup) and I was absent entirely between 1998 and 2011.

6) I once brought a half bottle of whiskey with me along with my standard haul of several bottles of ale and a bottle of Buckfast to a goth carry-out disco. The resulting levels of drunkenness that ensued on my part became legendary in the local scene for several years to come, although for my part I have little memory of it.

7) Having said that, although my hell-raising reputation was well-known once upon a time I did not taste a drop of alcohol until the legal age of 18, which was the same time I first smoked a cigarette. Incidentally I had smoked at most ten cigarettes before I made cigars a regular part of my routine.

8) Despite being a heterosexual adult male with no children, and despite not liking cats, I possess several toys and pieces of ephemera of Hello Kitty and I feel absolutely no shame in admitting that fact.
keresaspa: (Shonen Knife)
So, like in the good old days, a meme is doing the rounds and it has fallen on me. Apparently this originates on the wild hinterlands of Facebook but, knowing nothing about such diabolical malevolence, I am indebted to [livejournal.com profile] caddyman for initiating me into the inner circle of this particular one. Essentially the remit is to talk at some length about a specific band of the choosing of the originator and in may case I have been called upon to discuss the fair Shonen Knife and their opera. Splendid. So without further ado.

Time was the immediate answer to the question "who's your favourite band?" would for me be Jethro Tull, but that all began to change in early 2007 when I made the decision to investigate Shonen Knife. I still love the Tull, of course, but, having really enjoyed a bit of the 5.6.7.8.'s that I stumbled upon by accident, I was in the mood for Japanese girl rock and Shonen Knife fitted the bill better than any of their competitors. Others, like Lolita No. 18 and Lulu's Marble, have subsequently come along and vied strongly for my affections but for the depth of canon none of them can touch the Knife.

Although they've always been a three piece there can be no doubt that some animals have been more equal than others and the only permanent member, singer/guitarist/producer/songwriter/occasional keyboardist Naoko Yamano, has bestrode the band like a colossus since their inception and continues to do so to this day. More than anybody it is Naoko, a lady of 49 summers, believe it or not, when I took this picture, who has been responsible for the unmistakable cutesy but still hard garage-flavoured pop-punk sound that has defined the band throughout their career.

That's not to say that there hasn't been changes down the years. Formed by Naoko, her sister Atsuko and their friend Michie Nakatani in 1981, they ignored the anodyne j-pop that was emerging at the time, to instead take their lead from western punk bands. After a very limited release of Minna Tanoshiku in 1982 (a total rarity that I admit to never having heard) their first major indie release, Burning Farm came out the following year. This was part of an early naive period for the band, which was showcased even more strongly on follow-up Yama-no Attchan, where they experimented with some mid-80s styled synthesisers and production techniques, to generally disappointing results.

It would be 1986's Pretty Little Baka Guy where they really started to come into their own, returning to their punky roots but adding in a strong layer of garage rock to finally settle on the sound that would become their stock in trade. 712 followed five years later and, despite opening with a very ill-advised rap, this was where Shonen Knife came of age as the band we now know and love. By this time they had come to be feted by Kurt Cobain and others in the grunge movement, who admired the deceptive simplicity of their songs and the wonderfully silly innocence of their lyrics. A crossover into something approaching the mainstream in the Anglosphere was guaranteed but for once that was to be a good thing.

On the face of it 1993's Let's Knife (the first album I ever heard by the band incidentally) seemed like a bit of a naff cash-in, taking as it did a number of songs from their earlier albums, re-recording them with slicker production and translating the lyrics into something approximating English. Far from it however, as it remains for me their crowning achievement, a wonderful slice of daft enthusiasm that contains seven of their all-time top ten songs. Opening track "Riding on the Rocket" is probably my favourite of all their songs and almost certainly the best opening track to an album in the history of rock music. It didn't quite turn them into the global megastars that it should have but nevertheless it did increase their exposure in the west markedly. It was promptly followed by Rock Animals which kept the quality quotient high (if not being quite in the same league), then Brand New Knife, which, whilst still good, revealed a calmer and more introspective side to the band which, whilst not without its charms, didn't necessarily suit them that well.

Then the rot started to set in. Four decent but rather formulaic albums were churned out at regular intervals before the nadir was reached in 2006 with Genki Shock. It's not that it was terrible it's just that it had all become far too predictable and it looked remarkably like they weren't trying any more. By that point they had been recording in English for thirteen years but the lyrics had got worse and what had once been cute now just seemed like a lack of effort. When I tell you that one of the songs was about the fact that a lot of people wear jeans you know they're phoning it in! It clearly told as follow-up Fun! Fun! Fun! initially was released in Japan only but fortunately it proved a step up, as the band returned to a slightly punkier sound. 2008's Super Group cranked up the punk vibe a little further and was all the better for it, making it their best work since Rock Animals. It was when they were touring this album that I finally got to see the band live in May 2010 in the Scala in King's Cross. I was at the height of my haemochromatosis but still pulled myself out of my sick bed to make the pilgrimage and finally see them in the flesh. A fine time was had by all and I even got to meet Naoko and current drummer Emi Morimoto, although I must admit finally meeting the great woman did overwhelm me a little rendering me unable to say anything of any profundity to the lady. Nevertheless it was a transcendental experience to be in the presence of a goddess, despite my lack of loquacity.

It's something of a shame that their subsequent output has tailed off again somewhat. Free Time was the definition of a curate's egg, with some good ideas generally ruined by the songs being too long and repetitive (the soul of early punk is surely brevity, not length) whilst the double header of Pop Tune and Osaka Ramones suffered because of how indebted they were to the Ramones. The latter was an album of Ramones covers, most of which were played note for note and so ended up sounding like a Japanese woman singing a bunch of karaoke songs whilst it's Pop Tune follow-up mostly sounded like a collection of Ramones rip-offs, barring the track "Psychedelic Life" which, in something of a full circle for yours truly, had a nice bit of flute very reminiscent of Jethro Tull. Perhaps if I rated the Ramones more highly the albums would have appealed to me more (and the covers album was generally received positively despite my reservations) but I've never really cared for them so listening to albums on which they were the sole influence, rather than one of a number of influences, was always going to be a trying experience.

These days you can generally set your watch by Shonen Knife, so I anticipate a new album should appear sometime around mid to late 2014. My hope is that the Ramones stuff will be out of their system and they will return to their own sound which, whilst undoubtedly influenced by the shaggy New Yorkers, had a lot more to it than just that. Naoko will be 53 next month so there is unlikely to be too much more left in the tank but I remain convinced that she has one blinding album left in her. Hell, who knows in late middle age she might go all crazy and come 2018 churn out some strange Yoko Ono/Jarboe/Diamanda Galas effort a million miles away from what we're expecting. Or not. Either way though Shonen Knife still have a great legacy in their wake and I remain committed to description of Naifu as my favourite band.

And if anybody wants this just ask and I'll give you one of your bands.
keresaspa: (Cartman)
Well I don't often write on here at any length any more but thanks to the timely intervention of [livejournal.com profile] bombardiette I am about to. Finally a meme that has allowed, nay forced, me to think deeply and even allowed me the opportunity to get all ideological on your arses. Corking stuff. So anyway -

The rules: "Comment to this post and I will list seven things I want you to talk about. They might make sense or they might be totally random. Then post that list, with your commentary, to your journal. Other people can get lists from you, and the meme merrily perpetuates itself."

The seven topics I have been given are as follows:

1. The Irish Diaspora
2. America
3. The Catholic Church
4. The EU
5. Literature
6. War
7. Look at the city from an outsider's perspective. What do you see?

Very long-winded and pretentious waffle herein )

That's one from the golden days of livejournal when people used this as a forum for extended free form essays before Twitter and Facebook killed off brain cells and reduced communication to a couple of half-formed sentences. Well, I certainly enjoyed doing it even if you didn't enjoy reading a little of it before thinking "sod this" and playing Angry Birds instead. O tempora o mores!
keresaspa: (Julius Nyerere)
2011 review thing )
keresaspa: (Idi Amin)
What Kind of Reader Are You?
Your Result: Book Snob
 

You like to think you're one of the literati, but actually you're just a snob who can read. You read mostly for the social credit you can get out of it.

Obsessive-Compulsive Bookworm
 
Literate Good Citizen
 
Dedicated Reader
 
Non-Reader
 
Fad Reader
 
What Kind of Reader Are You?
Quiz Created on GoToQuiz


Interesting result from an old school meme there. It never occurred to me that my reading was mainly for a bizarre and largely discredited economic theory to do with national dividends and printing money as devised by C.H. Douglas in the 1920s and subsequently promulgated by John Hargrave, William Aberhart, John Beckett and some Antipodean oddballs. Well that is what Social Credit actually means. Perhaps if the creator of this test spent more time reading books than making little quizzes about them he or she would have known that already. You can't out-pedant a pedant, kiddo. Now get a dictionary and look up the word "kudos" which is I believe the word you wanted. Or do people just read dictionaries for "social credit" as well?

Sorry but I couldn't let that one pass, now could I? But to other things. The wind today dragged me in the direction of Ballymena, a town to the north and one which I may have rubbished occasionally in the past on here. If I'm being fully honest I had never actually set foot in the place until today and I must say it is an odd little burgh to say the least. I'm told it is three quarters Protestant and whilst there are Catholics there they certainly need to know their place (in the middle of the loyalist Harryville estate and covered in paint being their place in this case). Well it can certainly be said to be Protestant town when they have King Billy murals in the town centre and all the second hand shops are full to bursting with copies of the entire back catalogue of the Reverend William McCrea. They even give a rare outing to Iron Maiden mascot Eddie, who once upon a time was ubiquitous in his role as unofficial mascot of the South-East Antrim brigade of the UDA but has fallen off the radar somewhat since John Gregg bought it on his way back from Ibrox. Always nice to see the old school, even if it seems odd given the fact Ballymena is nowhere near South-East Antrim really, being more in the centre or north of the county, and is the sort of Bible belt place where local boy done good Ian Paisley would normally lead his followers in denouncing Iron Maiden as agents of Satan. But despite all this, not to mention the impenetrable shit-kicker accents and the fact that seemingly every man is called Billy, I have to say I found Ballymena to be a nice enough town and as good a place as any to freeze myself to death on a gelid December afternoon. Kudos (remember that word, meme writer) to you Ballymena, I shall never criticise the City of the Seven Towers again. Well, not for the rest of the day anyway.

And once again I cross my fingers as I press post.
keresaspa: (Geoffrey of Monmouth)
We all get them. The begging letter from a deposed general you have never heard of promising you untold riches in return for full access to your bank details and maybe a bit of scrouse to get the ball rolling. After all what self-respecting Nigerian billionaire doesn't want to hand over half of his hard swindled fortune to a total stranger on the other side of the world? Well kudos to the scammers for a recent example that I received which at least demonstrates that (a) they know how to be topical and (b) they are finally sending their fake offers from people you might actually have heard of if you don't have a PhD in Nigerian military history. Observe:

Dear Friend,

This mail may not be surprising to you if you have been following current events in the international media with reference to the recent protest in Egypt.I am Mrs. Suzanne Mubarak, the wife of Deposed Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak who is seriously ill and has slipped into coma.

Ever since the turn out of events and even prior to the protest,I have been thrown into a state of antagonism, confusion,humiliation, frustration and hopelessness by the present military leadership of the Egyptian Liberation Organization.I have even been subjected to physical and psychological torture.As a woman that is so traumatized, I have lost confidence with everybody in the country at the moment.

You must have heard over the media reports and the Internet on the discovery of some fund in my husband secret bank account and companies and the allegations of some huge sums of money deposited by my husband in my name of which I have refuses to disclose or give up to the corrupt Egyptian Government. In fact the total sum allegedly discovered by the Government so far is in the tune of about $6.5 Billion Dollars.And they are not relenting on their effort to make me and my sons (Gamal & Alaa Mubarak) poor for life. As you know, the Muslem community has no regards for women, more importantly when the woman is from a Christian background, hence my desire for a foreign assistance.

I have the sum of 62.5USD(Sixty-Two Million Five Hundred Thousand United States Dollars) with a financial firm in Europe whose name I can not disclose for now for security reasons until we open up communication. I shall be grateful if you could receive this fund into your bank account for safe keeping and any Investment opportunity. This arrangement will be known to you and I alone and all our correspondence should be strictly on email alone because our government has tapped all our lines and are monitoring all my moves.In view of the above, if you are willing to assist for our mutual benefits, we will have to negotiate on your Percentage share of the 62.5 USD that will be kept in your position for a while and invested in your name for my trust .

Please note that this is a golden opportunity that comes once in life time and more so, if you are honest, I am going to entrust more funds in your care as this is one of the legacy we keep for our children.In case you don't accept please do not let me out to the security and international media as I am giving you this information in total trust and confidence I will greatly appreciate if you accept my proposal in good faith.I am aware of the consequences of this proposal. So I ask that if you find no interest in this project that you should discard this mail.

I ask that you do not be vindictive and destructive. If my offer is of no appeal to you, delete this message and forget I ever contacted you. Do not destroy my family reputation because you do not approve of my proposal.

Please expedite action

Yours sincerely,
Mrs. Suzanne Mubarak


Yup that's right, Mrs. Hosni Mubarak wants to make me rich and is playing the poor traumatised damsel in distress harassed by those evil "Muslems" despite being totally innocent card. Now there's no denying that 62 million United States Dollars would come in handy but on reflection I have decided to pass on your generous offer "Suzanne" and will instead be vindictive and destructive by publishing your little e-mail for the amusement of my millions and millions of fans. Well, even if it actually is her (which it isn't), the days when Mubaraks could deal out pain of Alessandro Moreschi proportions are well and truly over. And if that's not the case then eep. Sorry Suzanne, as the Hollies would say, let's you and me have dinner some time.

And meanwhile, in lieu of actually thinking of anything to write about myself, I shall fall back on my former position and follow a meme that is doing the rounds.

Books )
keresaspa: (Meg)
It having been three months since my last blood-letting today saw the malevolent beast that is haemochromatosis demand the spilling of gore once again. A new system was in place today for me to get used to whereby the burden of treating us iron-loaders had been shifted from the junior doctors onto a dedicated nurse in another part of the hospital. For once though it is a change for the better as the dedicated nurse was as nice as ninepence and was a complete pro who slid the big needle in and out of my arm with the minimum of fuss. A marked contrast to the junior doctors, a mixed bunch at best who might be good but equally might be shaky messy dolts who stab the needle deep into you and then watch in dismay as it falls out again, a crimson tide gushing down my arm as they scratch their heads in confusion. More than once have I had to stroll home from the Falls Road desperately trying to conceal the bloodstains on my shirt as a consequence of a dose of incompetence from some kiddywig. The spectre of disappointment has also been banished as it is now an appointments system instead of the previous way which required you to turn up when you felt like and hope somebody would take you. Waiting for an hour was not unheard of and I was even turned away once as nobody could be arsed doing it. So all in all as pleasant as it is possible for the medicinal draining of blood to be and I can now get away without another one until the 16th of December (assuming my ferrotin levels haven't mysteriously shot up). As is inevitable after these I'm feeling a bit ropey now but the new system definitely gets my seal of approval.

Meanwhile I've jumped on the meme bandwagon after being donated a y from [livejournal.com profile] bombardiette. You know the score, ten things you like beginning with that letter so if you want a letter ask away.

*Yoko Ono - isn't she the craziest? Better than John Lennon in the opinion of me and nobody else.
*You are the Ref - annoyingly addictive comic strip/puzzle from the golden age of football magazines, thankfully now resurrected as a weekly feature over here.
*Y Tebot Piws - The Purple Teapot to you, sir. Wacky psychedelic funsters singing in Welsh whose opus "Y Gore A'r Gwaetha O'r" I now possess thanks to [livejournal.com profile] queenmartina's birthday present haul. Their best song? Why "Mae Rhywyn Wedi Dwyn'fy Nhrwyn" of course.
*You didn't wanna - Harry Enfield's finest ever creation from the good old days when he was actually funny. Come to think of it I don't know what this character is actually called but he has always been "you didn't wanna" in my house!
*Yogi Bear - classic Yogi from his original couple of series set in Jellystone Park only mind you. Once they started sending him into space and equaly ludicrous plot devices interest waned.
*York Street - seedy place on the outskirts of Belfast city centre that leads onto the Shore Road which in turn leads to Newtownabbey. Nice and grim and has a decent low-end shopping centre.
*Yamara - silly humour strip that used to appear in Dragon magazine back in the day. I haven't role played since forever but this would remind me of my later childhood so much.
*Youjeen - adorable Korean singer to whom you should all listen. Power ballad-tastic.
*Yellow-Legged Gull - gulls are my favourite birds of course and this is as fine a specimen as any.
*You Bet! - compellingly awful charity/game/variety show from the early 1990s featuring "celebrities" you have never heard of, daft challenges involving model planes or synchronised dog displays and Matthew Kelly in a sumo mawashi. It couldn't be much more Alan Partridge if it tried which makes the reruns unmissable in a car crash sort of way.
keresaspa: (Nina looking a tad pertubed)
FA Cup Third Round day - it's not what it was is it? We're often told that there was a time, somewhere in the distant past when football meant big ears, bad teeth and Brylcreem and people had suet-fried National Service smothered in condensed milk and polio for breakfast every day, that the FA Cup was the very pinnacle of football and that people as far afield as Oubangui-Chari, the Kingdom of Tavolara and Gondwana spent every waking moment with their teeth gritted in envy at the Little Tin Idol and the exploits of the Wanderers, Battling Barnsley and Bruddersford United. Unfortunately that was then and somewhere along the way the Premiership, the Champions League, the Club World Cup and the Steel and Sons Cup all pushed the glorious old fellow aside to the point where these days it is difficult to get truly excited about a competition where the top clubs field players who would struggle to even get into their Pontins League teams. Of course try telling that to the good folks at the Buena Vista-Miramax Sportssssss Network who have shelled out mucho dinero to screen it and so need to remind us constantly that the FA Cup is still specialTM.

I don't mean to be flippant about the grand old competition (what was that last paragraph about then?!) but one thing does need to be brought to book and that is the overuse of the phrase "giant killing". Now there was a time when this actually did mean something and, whilst no hard and fast definition has ever been agreed upon, generally it meant the winner should be at least three divisions below the loser and the loser should either be a big club at the time or have an impressive recent history. These days Bury beating Exeter is apparently an act of giant killing despite the fact (a) Bury are only one division lower, (b) they were playing each other in league games a mere two seasons ago and (c) Exeter, with their no major trophies and their stubborn refusal to ever enter into the top two divisions, are about as far removed from giants as one can get. Today I heard Sheffield Wednesday's win over Bristol City described as a giant killing despite Wednesday being a much bigger club than the Robins by every possible measurement except current position and Southampton's win over a third string Blackpool made out to be one of the greatest results in the history of a club that was wiping the floor with Manchester United only a few years ago. Feel free to correct me if you are a Saints man and happen to be passing this way (you never know) but I doubt a win against a club that you faced in the league as recently as 2009 and who prior to that you finished above every season since 1977 will join that 6-3 win over United at the Dell as an all-time great club performance.

Of course I can't ignore the elephant in the drawing room any longer and therefore must recognise the fact that apparently Albion were giant killed today as well. By Reading. Now I don't have the exact figures to hand but I would imagine that the two teams probably cost about the same and Albion are the consummate yo-yo team whilst Reading are a club that fairly recently managed a top half finish in the Premiership. OK, so we are a division higher this year but the way both teams are playing at the minute there is a fair chance that the reverse might be true next year. If I'm being honest I personally reckon that Reading are one of Albion's peers these days as they are fairly similar sized clubs and even given the difference in division this season the only resulting difference in size might be that Reading are golden retrievers to Albion's Labradors. A disappointing defeat by a good team who happen to be a division lower yes but a giant killing - come on! If Albion are giants then Reading are at least ogres!

Still the magic of the cupTM rolls on and tomorrow we can look forward to an epic clash between two true titans in a game that we only normally get twice a year, except with better players. I must admit it is set up to be a good one with Roy Hodgson slinking out in disgrace in favour of a man who hasn't actually managed a club since his debacle with Newcastle United way back when and I'll be keeping my fingers crossed tomorrow that we get to see Nathan Eccleston knock Liverpool's winner past a despairing Conor Devlin in the United goal. Meanwhile I'll be keeping my fingers crossed (on the other hand) that we don't get the inevitable ad break during the goal or sudden loss of picture in the style of Image Movers Mammoth Records Football and Soccer Broadcasting's coverage today. The magic may have faded but the gremlins remain more powerful than ever. Or is it just that these TV companies recognise that the FA Cup is not the draw it once was and so are scrimping on the money for these shows?

And interesting to note on the day that Dalglish returns to management the most shameful episode of his reign at St James Park, the bullying of Stevenage Borough, came back to bite the Magpies on their voluminous backsides with Stevenage (not Borough) putting them to the sword. Now that actually is a giant killing so well done to Not Borough on a famous win (although I rather suspect that their promotion to the Football League was a bigger event, despite what the [insert name of defunct Disney franchise as a woeful attempt to make a joke at the expense of ESPN] commentator said). Were I more romantic I would put it down to the aforementioned magic of the cupTM but perhaps a more sensible reaction would be to put it down to the tragic of Alan Pardew, a man who is to defeat what George Osborne is to supercilious boobery.

Oh and this again as reminder of the days when I knew what comments were - Who comments the most on this journal? )
keresaspa: (Lolita No. 18)
Kaboom, blam-oh, etc. Yes, it's my favourite time of year again ... NOT! I know it's just a bit of fun but all this constant banging and whooshing and people in half-arsed costumes demanding money with menace really gets on my wick. Fireworks have never impressed me and the two years I fell victim to the American import that is trick or treating left me feeling decidedly uncomfortable in the way beggars must do. Be it the "fat goose" song, the ubiquitous pumpkins, the inevitable Satanic scare that turns up on local TV or the council-sponsored organised mirth that is actually as mirthful as Melvyn Bragg's underpants I just find the whole thing as boring as a wet weekend in Wigan.

So to delay (or perhaps increase) the inevitable onset of ennui I will turn my intentions to this meme based on one's last.fm top fifty whilst shaking my fist at the chaos of Catherine wheels that is interfering with my attempts to listen to the March Violets. Have fun won't you.

Thus )

Book 'im

Oct. 3rd, 2010 09:16 pm
keresaspa: (Rubberduckzilla)
Is it just me or has livejournal been running slower than Cyril Smith's pall bearers recently? I swear it takes a good few minutes for me to see any page now. There again maybe it is just my laptop being its usual snail-like self. Bloody machines.

Anyway, everybody is doing this therefore so must I:

The BBC believes that out of the following 100 classics [that's debatable], most people will only have read an average of six. Bold the ones you've read, italicize those you've dabbled with (read a portion/watched a film rendition/read an abridged version).

List )

So there you have it. I'm not sure what it proves but there you have it anyway. Now if you'll excuse me I managed to chouse a bunch of Lulu's Marble downloads from shady sources and I must continue appreciating their sheer majesty. If I don't see you through t'week I'll see you through t'window.
keresaspa: (Harry Cross)
So there's this thing that [livejournal.com profile] burkesworks is trumpeting.

The Blogalyser reveals...

Your blog/web page text has an overall readability index of 17.

This suggests that your writing style is intellectual
(to communicate well you should aim for a figure between 10 and 20).Your blog has 38 sentences per entry, which suggests your general message is distinguished by verbosity
(writing for the web should be concise).

CHARACTER MATRIX



male malefemale female
self oneselfgroupworld world
past pastpresentfuture future

Your text shows characteristics which are 59% male and 41% female
(for more information see the Gender Genie).
Looking at pronoun indicators, you write mainly about yourself, then the world in general and finally your social circle. Also, your writing focuses primarily on the present, next the past and lastly the future.

Find out what your blogging style is like!









Always nice to be praised for one's intellect but I will take issue with one thing - that arbitrary ukase that "writing for the web should be concise". Says who, Hitler?! Perhaps if you're "tweeting" for a bunch of morons but we have an altogether smarter class of people round these parts who can read at a level above the average five year old. Either that or I like the sound of my own opinions ;)
keresaspa: (Miki Sugimoto)
Two points about the changes in Sky Sports News. The departure of the channel from Freeview means that the only reasons I have for keeping the blasted thing are weekly showings of King of the Hill (which will be ending soon anyway having been axed) and Important Things with Demetri Martin (and I'm getting a bit bored of him anyway). Given that I never watch DVDs now it might be time for my TV to hit the road soon. On the other hand the revamped channel remains on the main TV on Virgin Media and I have to say it looks bloody awful. Horrid widescreen format with all the writing on-screen tiny and illegible and too much flashing and movement going on. The only thing Rupert Murdoch got right and now they've naused it up. Bloody change!

And now because I can think of nothing to talk about but still feel a determination to keep this thing going I will go old school and roll out a survey, as taken from [livejournal.com profile] queenmartina.

Read more... )
keresaspa: (James Connolly)
The early evening after the night before brings a sort of sluggishness, not helped by the fact that I am confined to barracks by the morons in sashes tramping up and down and by the unrelated fact that I have been nursing a general pain in my whole belly area for the last few days. As such I am unable to take advantage of the great new state of affairs that sees the Orange Order allowing shops to open for a few hours whilst they are at the field (apparently I missed the meeting where control of this dump was handed over to them) although I doubt that I would have anyway as my lack of a car combined with the nonexistence of public transport today means that I cannot imagine a way in which I could have got there and back without getting my head kicked in by the English Defence League, Combat 18 or some other squad of mouth breathers attracted by "Orangefest". I could go off on a grand missive about it but that noggling pain has removed my will to care and I have instead resolved to register my displeasure by listening to Wolfe Tones songs and frowning a lot. Dead hard me!

Anyway, I'll move on to the recent meme doing the rounds that I posted a few weeks back but which I shall now return to with the letter 's' courtesy of [livejournal.com profile] clytemenstra. You know the score about asking for letters by now so I'll crack on.

Sturnin Bread by Lulu's Marble: Wonderful piece of Japanese nonsense featuring that "mammy's little baby loves strawberry jam" refrain over a basic garage rock riff with lots of screaming. The band are long defunct following the untimely death of their singer but this remains an absolute classic, albeit one that I can find nowhere on the internet. So if you know where I can get it do let me know as there is a wumpeechoo for whoever can find it.

Siege of Yaddlethorpe by Amazing Blondel: Crumhorn-heavy noodling from the prog folk greats who really should have had more of an impact than they did. Not unlike Gryphon, this is how mediaeval and Renaissance revival music should be done.

Sunny Came Home by Shawn Colvin: I was going to say that Shawn is perhaps a bit outside my normal taste but given my previous statements regarding Dar Williams that is maybe not the case after all. Rather like Ms. Williams "As Cool As I Am" this song oddly reminds me of my early to mid teens when it was frequently on Radio 2 in my house. Still a fine piece of work to this day, dealing with somebody going nuts and torching the house.

Somebody Save Me by Krypteria: Sometimes you just can't beat a slice of female-fronted symphonic metal and this is a fine example from the German outfit (perhaps the only genre of music the Germans do consistently well). And it has honestly nothing to do with the fact that they have a drool-worthy Korean singer ;)

She was Poor But She was Honest by Billy Bennett: "Almost a Gentleman" was one of the grand old men of the music halls and this was his finest hour in which he launches into the injustices of wealth inequality. OK I'm reading a little more into it than is actually present but it is still a grand old music hall song and there is still an anti-rich message in there so I salute my comrade.

I really should have picked "Sash, the" as one of my choices, shouldn't I? In a pig's eye I should've!
keresaspa: (Max Miller)
Being pedantic is always fun but it really has been like shooting fish in barrel where Jonathan Pearce has been concerned this last week. Jonny opened his commentary on the Serbia-Germany match by telling us that we have to go back to 1938 for the last time Germany didn't make the last eight. Well Pearcey, leaving aside the fact that no team representing Germany as a whole appeared after the war until 1994, I reckon you'll find that the 1950 World Cup featured no German team at any stage as apparently they were persona non grata for some reason. As for this match, both teams started OK, with the Serbs at least better than their dismal showing in the first match. However it very quickly became clear that the referee fancied being the centre of attention, even if for Mick McCarthy a defender who commits murder probably wouldn't deserve a booking. To be fair to McCarthy he is a droll kind of guy and, although I'm not a big fan of the Americanised concept of a "color [sic] commentator", he is one of the better ones to fill that role for the Beeb. He is not at the level of Martin Keown who, despite being an evil gorilla as a player, is a measured, intelligent man of few, but important, words in this role but he is certainly a mile better than Mark Lawrenson, who is the absolute pits as co-commentator. Still, right he was about the ref who ballsed the game up good and proper with the sending-off of Klose and a tendency to wave cards about for fun. The goal was not the sort that a German side would ever concede and it is surely a weakness in Jogi's team that they reacted so badly to the red card. Once again the Serbs gave away a daft handball penalty but luckily for them the resulting kick was a stinker. It boggles the mind that Nemanja Vidic, a player even an ABU like me will admit is pure class, can make such a rookie mistake but luckily for him Lukas Podolski has the first touch of a Shunosaurus. Indeed were The Topper to come back to life and then introduce a strip about Podolski the most used phrase would probably be "erkle". Well, it could happen! A shock then, but one dictated too much by a Hollywood ref and one that I found myself struggling to become too interested in, perhaps because both mobs are hard to warm to.

For the next game the American boys took to the field wearing a fetching little shirt that incorporated a sash design (right). Not sure what it reminded me of! Another game that I wasn't expecting an awful lot from but I should have known that a good show was in the offing when Clint Dempsey threw an elbow and floored a guy in the first minute. One thing is for sure, what with this and a few other nasty ones later on, Dempsey would have been sent off PDQ by the previous referee. The Slovenians showed a lot more in the early goings than they had in the whole of their earlier win and Birsa's goal was a bit of magic and well deserved. The second goal came from nowhere, a few seconds after the Americans had almost equalised, and Onyewu had a bit of a mare here. Certainly this particular Gooch would not have bossed Arnold Jackson around in Diff'rent Strokes. Good to see Rangers own Maurice Edu make an appearance at half time - I wonder if he asked his team-mate DaMarcus Beasley to drive him to the match? His appearance also reminded me of Freddy Adu, who not so many years ago was being built up as the new Pele but is now apparently not even good enough for this limited squad. The new Nii Lamptey perhaps? Still back to the match and Landycakes goal was an absolute peach whilst soon it was Slovenia’s turn to get lucky as Suler could easily have been sent off too. Route one equaliser from the boss's son (no DNA test needed for those doppelgangers) and by that time the match was genuinely end to end at times. Good old Edu was unfortunate to have his goal disallowed although to be fair the ref blew before he struck and it may have caused the Slovenian defence to stand still. In the end neither team seemed willing to muster the necessary oomph to grab a winner but a draw was probably the fairest result. Really neither team looked that good but their limitations helped to make this a hell of a spectacle and either one of them could make the next round with a bit of luck.

Then the big one as mighty England strode majestically to the field, the boy Rooney imperious in his skills and Capello, like the grand master tactician that he is, making nought but the right moves. With the hopes of a nation on their shoulders and God on their side the brave Three Lions overcame the insurmountable odds placed before them and held Algeria to a 0-0 draw. But to be serious, for all the bile heaped on Steve McClaren and all the talk of how great Don Fabio is that performance was every bit as insipid as anything the so-called Wally with the Brolly served up. My only hope is that the drum-beaters will allow a bit of realism to enter in and realise that Rooney has looked ordinary at best, that England have no goalkeepers and a central defence held together by masking tape (in part cause by said Don Fabio opting to call up a player in Ledley King who has been playing injured for the last few years), that their two best midfielders can't be in the same country let alone the same team and that any team forced to rely on the likes of Emile Heskey can never consider itself serious contenders for a World Cup. That's the hope anyway but I know the reality will be different when they squeeze past Slovenia and suddenly the last two games are written off as a dress rehearsal. Credit to Algeria who gave as good as they got but from where I was sitting it just looked like two decidedly ordinary teams playing out a bore draw. If they're world-beaters then it must be a pretty lame world.

Finally in a complete change of pace from recent rubbish here's a little meme donated by [livejournal.com profile] burkesworks that works thus:

1. Reply to this post and I'll assign you a letter.
2. List (and upload, if you feel like it) 5 songs that start with that letter.
3. Post them to your journal with these instructions.

I've been given "F" by old Mr. Dirtymind but if you want uploads you can whistle as the ins and outs of illegal downloads are a total mystery to me. And by heck but f is a hard letter to find good songs for!

1) Flor de Azalea - Jorge Negrete Puro ranchero I believe they call it. I'm no expert on Mexican music (conjuntos are another matter but strictly speaking those are Mexican emigrant bands) but I know what i like and this brassy lament sounds good to me, even if it is little more than a Mexican equivalent of the sort of nonsense Gene Kelly and his ilk used to belt out on cheesy extravaganzas.

2) Fine Girl - Frank Zappa One of Zappa's finest pieces of work from the 80s, this disco parody sits well amongst his finer works. As always it's a joy to hear his trademark deeper than the abyss "Yeah" whilst the total collapse of the tune into Pompey chimes style choral nonsense at the end is hilarious.

3) Free Jah Jah Children - Sugar Minott Sugar ran the gamut in reggae stakes, including some ill-advised diversions into lovers rock, but his roots period produced some high quality work, including this bit of Studio One Rasta lark. A pity that he got caught up in the whole dancehall nonsense but we'll always have this.

4) Flying Jelly Attack - Shonen Knife Have to include my girls, don't I? A song recorded by them a few times but the definitive version appeared on Let's Knife and the gibberish lyrics are so adorable it's untrue. In fact here's a decent live version for you all to enjoy, even if they did play it better when I saw them :)

5) Fu*k the USA - The Exploited Perhaps unfair of me to include this song after their performance today but it is a classic. Wattie and the boys attempt to take on the uncertainties of the late Cold War period and come up with a strong rebuke to the excesses of Reaganomics. Actually it's just a bunch of indecipherable shouting and a sing-along sweary chorus but you have to love it. It's to my life-long disappointment that Hillary Clinton didn't take my advice and use it as her campaign theme tune. Who knows where she would be if she had (the poor house most likely).

Took it out of me did that. I'm ready for bed!
keresaspa: (L7)
"Music was my first love" opined John Miles in a song that everybody thinks is ghastly but I personally believe to be a fine piece of work and on a day that Big Cards says is about love rather than the martyrdom of an early Christian what better topic than the one Miles crooned about? Of course we all have our own opinions of what constitutes good music but it is interesting to think of why we ended up with the opinions we hold on that score. Thinking about it I believe that in my time I have encountered a few albums that have proven seminal in the development of my taste. Whilst these might or might not be my favourites they are still pivotal for the impact they had on my taste. I've managed to isolate eight that I think have had a big impact on my taste and they are:

Bad Manners - Height of Bad Manners The first album I bought and as such an important part of framing my future taste. I was about seven when I bought this gate fold vinyl best of from Woolies and it marked the beginning of me caring about music at any level beyond taping the charts off the radio. I still have it to this day and it was from there that I first became interested in music.

Small Faces - The Complete Collection I lost interest for a while in my early teens (even though that's supposed to be the age you go gaga over pop music) until I started to get the notion of listening to music again. Then one day at about 14 I wandered into the recently opened HMV and picked up a copy of a cheap no-name compilation of Small Faces hits, despite the fact that I was still a few years away from owning my own CD player. Either way it meant I was a music fan once again.

V/A - Progressions This prog compilation was doing the rounds in our house for a while before I took an interest in it. To say that it sparked what has become a lifelong enjoyment of progressive rock would probably be true as once I heard "Living in the Past" I was hooked.

Bal-Sagoth - Battle Magic I had dabbled slightly in metal but it was not until I was about 18 that my passion for that wonderfully ludicrous genre really kicked in when a slightly odd little chap I went to school with taped me a copy of the Bal-Sagoth classic. The extreme metal kick that dominated my early 20s and that is still a part of my musical taste began there and then.

Frank Zappa - Son of Cheap Thrills One of those days of undergraduate poverty where you were hanging about Virgin Megastore determined to buy some sounds but unable to afford nearly everything in the days when "2 for £20" was considered good value. I spotted a copy of this Zappa sampler lingering for around a fiver and decided to take a chance, having only previously encountered Uncle Frank as a name on TV. Again hooked from the word go and "We're Only in it for the Money", which remains my favourite album, was bought soon afterwards on the strength of this purchase.

L7 - The Beauty Process Similar scenario to above, only this time I had sank a few pints earlier in the day and, as I recall, it was nearing six o'clock closing time in the self-same Virgin Megastore. They had a bit of a sale on and I noticed a copy of this album and felt that I had to buy it. Given that I was none too sober at the time I suspect that cover image may have appealed to me as dark-haired women with a feg on were my thing at the time! Whatever the reason it was a decision well made and the genesis of my love of all things riot grrrl.

Fats Waller - The Centenary Collection I had flirted with jazz as a youth but left it aside early on. Then another big sale at Virgin Megastore saw me touch for a three CD set of Fats at the knockdown price of three of your quid. Suddenly I realised that jazz wasn't just for old farts (or perhaps that I was becoming an old fart) and I widened my mind not only to it but also to blues, country and other things that I had hitherto considered music for the elderly.

Shonen Knife - Let's Knife A couple of years ago this one and in fact I covered it here at the time but given how much Japanese nonsense I listen to now this was definitely a seminal purchase.

So what of the rest of you? I don't for a minute imagine that you all woke up as proggers or goths one morning by chance and indeed you all must have certain albums that helped to mould your various tastes. Do tell.

Anyway just to ensure that the usual quotient of misery is met here I will move on to that meme that is doing the rounds where you describe five things that everybody else loves and you don't and say why. I've tried to think of something a bit different here as I have riffed on a lot of popular stuff that I hate in this dusty, unloved corner of the web before. As such:

1) Coffee - All you hear from people is how they can't function without their coffee. I don't know how many times I have drunk the fetid stuff in my life but I can tell you this - it has bugger all effect. Not only that but no matter which version it is they all taste like crap. Americanisation at its worst if you ask me. Give me a cup of tea any day.

2) Mixed Martial Arts - I follow professional wrestling from time to time but I can't for the life of me fathom what the appeal is of two men hugging each other on the floor with the odd rabbit punch being thrown. Well, perhaps I can but I know for a fact that the audiences for this rubbish aren't ALL frustrated women and gay men. At least pro wrestling can be a bit exciting even if it fake whereas MMA is as dull and tedious as amateur wrestling. For me MMA is no better than dog fighting and I look forward to that craze falling by the wayside.

3) Science fiction - I can't really justify my dislike of this on any level other than "it's crap because I say so" but really the appeal of the genre, be it TV, film, books or comics, has always been lost on me. It's just greasy kids stuff trying to pretend that it is intellectual and worthy as far as I'm concerned. No, actually it is just a case of it being crap because I say so!

4) Cannabis - I might like me reggae but I don't care for collie at all. Why people rave so much about not being able to walk properly (the only impact I ever experience) is beyond me and, just like coffee's mythical properties, I found it no more relaxing than building a house of cards in a hurricane with Lizzie from the Football League Show yammering in my ear.

5) The Rolling Stones - Sad old tramps making pedestrian blues rock. Please just lie down. I may have defended listening to old man music above but an exception is made for these useless granddads.

Happy Communist Martyrs Day people!

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