31 Dec 2009

Untitled



I was having a shit when I heard the first sirens. Even though they weren’t that close or particularly loud, they startled me and I instantly knew it was something big.

There were layers of sounds – high and low pitched, filling the air outside the window, and in the distance, voices. Shouting, screaming. A state of mass panic just outside the house. I was focussed on it and pulled up my pants to go see what was happening. I opened the door and saw the orange hue. A warm glow over everything. It was beautiful for a few seconds until I realised it was all burning.

The flames weren’t separate from each other – like lots of fires all over – it was as though the whole world was engulfed in a great inferno. One thing – one event seemed to have occurred so quickly that no one even had time to run. A small blond girl in a black and glitter Hello Kitty T-Shirt ran past me, I had to turn away. When I did I was faced with a guy about my age with burning knees. I had never pictured what burning knees would look like – but there they were. He had on shorts and a t-shirt and all I could think was, it’s December? Why are you in shorts? Then I saw the squash racket still in his hand – melted in. Further away, the fire trucks and ambulances lined the top of the hill on the main road, like a barrier stopping anyone from going down into the main town. Maybe that was the centre. Where it had hit. Whatever it was.

The emergency services people were running back and forth, organised, professional, which for some reason was surprising to me. Everyone else was on the verge of insanity. It seemed that they all collectively realised that The End had come and there was nothing they could do about it. Not one goddamned thing. Yet this realisation was irrevocably mixed with the human survival instinct of; we can’t fight, but if we run we may survive. But there was nowhere to run. I walked up the street – feeling the air on my bare arms get hotter and hotter, thicker and blacker, and stopped in front of the steps of the college.

The noise was deafening, people trying to escape, trying to find each other. I was thankful I was alone in the world. A huge roar like a jumbo jet inside your ears was coming from – everywhere, and getting closer. I breathed in long and deep, closed my eyes and tried to make my last thought a good one. And in that moment – in all the terror and chaos I realised, damn...

I forgot to wipe.

30 Dec 2009

Been caught stealing

New writing. Check it out HERE.

We were about 11 years old and the manager was threatening to break our legs.
The 3 of us, me and my 2 – older but apparently not wiser – cousins, had been frog marched into the manager’s office by a security guard who didn’t really have to excel at his job that day. We were right there in broad daylight trying to stuff the toys into our jackets, at the front of an aisle by the checkouts in the local supermarket. We may as well have walked in there in black and white striped shirts, masks, and bags with SWAG daubed across them.

Blender.


Transworld has re-printed a nice little article on the legend that is Neil Blender. HERE.

29 Dec 2009

You Bette.

Seeing as I walked back into work just now and was greeted straight away by ‘Wind beneath my wings’(swear to god) coming out the radio, I’m going to update you on my ‘End of year Xmas sounds of the moment' list to distract myself:

This is amazing despite the presence of Dame Dash:


This is exactly what you’d expect/want from Grohl + Homme + J P Jones:


This is fucking epic:



And this is the only album this year with a track named ‘Kevin Spacey’:



Add into this mix a cocktail Lu and I co-invented, called ‘The Footspa’, this book:



and some of these:



And it made for good time off.

23 Dec 2009

Operation Ivy quote of the week


Music is an indirect force for change, because it provides an anchor against human tragedy. In this sense, it works towards a reconciled world. It can also be the direct experience of change. 

21 Dec 2009

You know who you are


It’s funny. Funny weird not funny ha-ha - how you rich are so inherently disassociated from the issues of those you secretly consider to be beneath you.
It is also in equal parts amusing and repellent, the way in which you feign interest in the life of the lower being, the worker, the servant.

It is at times difficult to settle upon which motive is the least devious – the one where you could care less about us living or dying, or the one in which you have no awareness of our existence in the first place.

Trying to be enlightened – to acknowledge your malice but then accept it and forgive, leaving it behind like an empty coffee cup for someone else to pick up, this quickly becomes an endurance test. At worst it descends into an occasion for hatred and arson. Darkness and murder.

I match your indifference, your inability to connect with other humans. I invented insincerity. And every false toothy bullshit smile you spray over people is just a poor imitation of something I started a hundred years before you even knew my name. You cannot even afford me the credit of your character, your mannerisms like every other pie you stick your fingers into – are stolen, inherited. Or by some other means given free to you. No work needed on your part.

You have done enough damage with your small needles, pin pricks time and again over the years, to create this circle. Bringing me all the way back round to hatred. Back around to anger and irrational thought.

But you have no knowledge of this. You never have – or will. Your life is too bright for you to be able to see. All that reflected sunlight. You are blinded by that which shines down only on you.


For Lu.

7 Dec 2009

stitched up by Stevie Wonder


Seriously, I could have done better than this myself, while still under anesthetic.

3 Dec 2009

Boogie Down Bronx


I can't remember much of what I did when I was 16, but it wasn't anything like this.

27 Nov 2009

Music in the soul can be heard by the universe.



The coldest morning of the month so far, was balanced out nicely by these Californian summer sounds playing in my ears: Some people say this album is better than Pet Sounds. I concur.

25 Nov 2009

Ol’ glitter fingers.

It was 8.50 a.m and everyone was being extra nice.
It was one of those wards in hospital where they probably had to have
‘Extra nice’ training due to the types that came through there.
Even in those surroundings – and that early in the morning
They all managed to keep the grins at max.

I liked it.
It made a pleasant change,
Especially for that place.
The amount of time I had spent in that hospital with
Frowning and depressed morons was incalculable.
I was called over to the desk and the lady started on the usual
Name / age / DOB etc,
I’m pretty sure I got most of them right.

She had on a great deal of makeup,
Her white-blonde hair was both coloured and styled,
I’d say 2 cans of hairspray had met their death that morning.
And her hands were adorned - yellow gold and some zircon rings.
Maybe diamonds, but then again how much could she be on?
More than me still didn’t necessarily mean enough for the real thing.
Her fingernails were French polished, and the tips a metallic silver
With a glitter paint effect.

I looked at her,
I looked around the room,
Down the hall,
At the colour coded walls and doors,
The plants that may have been real or plastic -
You couldn’t tell.
And she didn’t fit in at all.
I watched her while she typed and thought
Does she know she sticks out around here?
All the other nurses and desk staff were well-presented, sure
But dressed down.
In tune with the walls and doors.

Her expression seemed to suggest she was more than happy
With her outfit/hair/fingernail ensemble.
Part of me was so curious to see what shoes she had on
I almost leant forward to peek under the desk...
Just then she finished her questions and her typing,
The clickety-click of those falsies came to a halt.
There was silence again.
‘Ok, you can go back and wait over there now thank you.’
I thanked her too,

She was more than just getting by in amongst all that mediocrity -
She had one day long ago decided on a big rebel yell.
Decided to separate herself from her environment so she could
Manage to get through having to be there day in, day out.

In my head, I quietly applauded her.
Then I sat back down and waited, with a small grin that wasn’t there
Before.

23 Nov 2009

The people walk with such an indifference

'The people walk with such an indifference I begin to hate them, but then again I've never really been fond of anything.'

Why if you're travelling the entire length of a train journey - and they notice, doesn't anyone bother to tell you that your backpack is open? I came all the way into work in the rain, with my wallet exposed today. What's wrong with people? The 'English' weather over the last couple of days has pretty much worn down my already smooth face into an even gentler frown. I have - inbetween jumping over (as opposed to in) puddles, and cleaning bird crap off the car, been re-re-reading this:


Gets you through, Really does.

20 Nov 2009

No one likes going to the office everyday

but imagine going into the office every morning and sitting at this bad boy:


 
This made it straight into my 'Top 5 best things I've ever seen that are absolutely pointless' list.


16 Nov 2009

John Rae



Watched a doc. on the story of Dr John Rae, and more specifically the Franklin Expedition, which is as huge a fallacy as you could possibly imagine. Wiki has some info but nothing like Ray's story and background on John Rae. Amazing stuff.

my wife sent me this


The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. But no price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself.  Nietzsche

13 Nov 2009

Felt 3

Yeah, posting YouTube clips – l a z y. Keep watching for some desktop skate action at the end.



6 Nov 2009

Photo of the week



"The picture was taken in the Altai territory of Russia, right in the border regions of Kazakhstan. It shows the second stage of a Soyuz rocket in the crash zone where they come down to earth. You can see them fall during the day, and usually hear the big bang as they hit the ground. These things are made out of pretty good metal too, so a lot of the locals make a living chasing rocket parts, before selling them as scrap. If you look very carefully, you can see that the white things all around them are butterflies or moths." Jonas Bendiksen is a Norwegian photographer based in New York.


5 Nov 2009

Because why not...

Never a bad time for a bit o' RAW. So here you go - for no other reason than it's Thursday. For some of us anyway.

The genius of an artist, Aristotle says, lies in his texne, the root from which we get our word "technology"; but texne basically means skill or craft, or the ability to make things that never existed before. Negative entropy, i.e., information . . .
The musician and the architect, the poet and the physicist -- all inventors of new realities -- all such Creators may be best considered late evolutionary developments of the type that first appears as the shaman. Please remember that shamans in most cultures are known as "they who walk in the sky," just like our current shaman-hero, Luke Skywalker . . .

2 Nov 2009

Let's just try that again...

Around Christmas time, this bad boy is going to be fired up for the 2nd time:


Previously on The Wire – I mean, the LHC...

...Discoveries would include the God Particle, a tiny entity also called the Higgs Boson, which is believed to give objects – including people – their mass.

Buuuuuuuuuut -

A hole was punched in the protective pipe that surrounds the cable and released helium, cooled to minus 271C, into a section of the collider tunnel. Pressure valves failed to vent the gas and a shock wave ran through the tunnel. A 400-metre chunk of the £2.5bn device had been wrecked, it was discovered.

To reiterate the point of all this -

The LHC will accelerate bunches of protons, kept in two beams, each less than a hair's breadth in diameter, at speeds close to the speed of light.

One beam will circulate clockwise, the other anti-clockwise. Then, at four points along the collider's tunnel, the beams will cross.

These explosive interactions will form the operation and will generate new types of particle, including the Higgs, that will pop fleetingly into existence before disintegrating into a trail of other sub-atomic entities.

Sceptics argue that miniature black holes will be created and one of these could eventually grow to swallow up the Earth. This fear has led protesters to make legal attempts to close down the LHC, one even making it to the European Court of Human Rights.

Even stranger is the claim by another group of physicists who say the production of Higgs bosons may be so abhorrent to nature that their creation would ripple backwards through time to stop the collider before it could make one, like a time traveller trying to halt his own birth.

So, with my scientific knowledge and calculations, I predict that around 11.59pm on Dec 24th 2009, this dude -
will come flying out in this -

...nothing's impossible, only improbable.

27 Oct 2009

what happened after the storm / is everyone ok

This morning's rainy day travelling music:



Sometimes you happen upon perfection, just for a moment - as cheesy and poetic as it may be - to have these sounds in your head and watch the brown and gold leaves fall from trees across rows of steel train tracks. (While I sat at the station, there were 2 homeless dudes trying to get dog-ends off the train tracks at the same time, but I chose to not include them in this particluar image). This album is so underrated.


26 Oct 2009

The boss


Click HERE for a nice Ed Templeton interview over at Juxtapoz Mag.

3 Oct 2009

Some Vinyl

Part 2 of my 'cataloging my coloured vinyl for no real reason...' pictures:







29 Sep 2009

A small victory

‘‘I understand the concept of synchronicity – I mean my favourite movies are always brought up in my favourite TV shows. That means I’m doing something right, right?’’

Today I ate more pasta than any human has ever eaten. It was 2 sittings of cheesy goodness and now I’m ‘fit to burst’, as they say. I watch the girl across from me nibble on salad and sip a thin soup. Lightweight.

Last night as I lay awake in bed, eyes open - my body tired, my mind racing - I thought up an entire stand-up comedy routine. It totaled about 5 minutes and it killed them, the whole room, blackened except for small red table lights and the single spot, roared.

For a moment or two I considered jumping out of bed and writing it all down. Unreal as these jokes were that I had just happened upon, they would work in real life, I knew that without any doubt.

But, laziness plus tiredness, plus warmth divided by stupidity stayed my legs and instead, I closed my eyes and concentrated on the imagined success of that fragile moment.

You can’t lose if you don’t try, I thought as I curled up to her warm back and ass. And burying my face in her neck of long brown hair I felt a little like a failure – but I was a warm, comfortable failure.

15 Sep 2009

Real Gone



While still drinking coffee and reminiscing over Point Break, I am listening to this for the first time. Yeah, Johnny-come-lately strikes again – anyway it’s a good listen, totally different to what I’d expected of Tom Waits and goes well with this Autumnal and grey morning.

Aw, man...


1952 - 2009.

10 Sep 2009

Human, all too human




Anything, anything would be better than this agony of mind, this creeping pain that gnaws and fumbles and caresses one and never hurts quite enough.

9 Sep 2009

Mercurial




Wow. Another really relevant Mercury Music Prize win! Maybe it’s kismet – some kind of planetary alignment - that so close to the anniversary of 9/11 we are now experiencing yet another world-changing event. How lucky are we to be alive right now.

‘To me, Michael Jackson’s story of his life is very similar to Jesus. This young guy who, from when he was very young, showed signs of being exceptional. Jesus went around preaching the gospel and touching people to make the blind see and making lepers better. Michael Jackson’s gone around the world and done that – he might not have literally touched someone and made them see, but apparently, I don’t know if this is true, there were kids around him that had cancer that didn’t have cancer anymore.’

‘ I don’t know if this is true...’ Really? Maybe best not repeat it in the national press then baby. (Sample album lyric by the way: ‘He's got a dead beat dad, that beats his mum real bad’)

Honestly, I don’t care if your record sounds like Definitely Maybe or What’s Going On, if you espouse that random shit in public, I’m gonna go ahead and assume you’re running on a low battery. So, your name's 'Speech' and you're a rapper? I see what you did there! Dumbass.



3 Sep 2009

f o n t




 
Elephant and Castle, 1991 to 1993. Graphic Design and Typography.

By the end of the course we had discovered some ‘rules’ of design... some of which still exist today. For example certain fonts are always a no-no, whereas others are always a safe bet. The paradigm of typeface avoidance was always Cooper Black (found this pic which confirms this philosophy still stands in 2009)

1 Sep 2009

Close your eyes and pretend it didn’t happen.



Where have I been all these months?
Years even..?
I can see only a few feet ahead -

and now everyone tells me that
Since I’ve been away,
Mirrors no longer exist.
Souls have flown from bodies like birds
From a tree.

How many of them will I miss..?
Only a few.
You would need a bigger,
Stronger heart than
This
To care about so many others.
Lungs,
Breath,
Lips,
Arms...
The smalls of their backs and soft arches
Of their feet.

My idling thoughts continue floating
Out of reach,
Out of sight.
While my hard clay flesh
Lays slumped on the ground,
Pushing up and falling in unison
With the concrete,
With the earth,
Worms,
Spiders,
Dogs, dead bird skeletons.

Grey kindling dust is picked up on the wind.
I cover my face
To make sure it doesn’t get in my eyes,
With all the other mess.


25 Aug 2009

GG



 
So... you make a tube thing, look through it at the sky and think ‘Wow, this may be able to further improve us as a species.’ Then the church gets involved...

Christian biblical references Psalm 93:1, Psalm 96:10, and 1 Chronicles 16:30 include statements to the tune of: "the world is firmly established, it cannot be moved." Similarly, Psalm 104:5 says, "the Lord set the Earth on its foundations; it can never be moved."

400 years ago today, On 25 August 1609, Galileo demonstrated his first telescope. He was found "vehemently suspect of heresy," i.e: of having held the opinions that the Sun lies motionless at the centre of the universe, that the Earth is not at its centre and moves, and that one may hold and defend an opinion as probable after it has been declared contrary to Holy Scripture. He was required to “abjure, curse and detest" those opinions.

He was ordered imprisoned; a sentence later reduced to house arrest. His ‘offending’ Dialogue was banned; and in an action not announced at the trial, publication of any of his works was forbidden, including any he might write in the future.

Yay.

13 Aug 2009

what are we looking for again..?



How many planets exists which might support life? Indeed, what is required for life to exist? How does life start? How does it evolve, and what fabulous creatures can evolution produce? How often do intelligent creatures appear in the giant tapestry of life? It is exactly these questions, and all of them, which are being addressed by the scientists of the Carl Sagan Center for the Study of Life in the Universe.

12 Aug 2009

worst - book - ever

Check out THIS blog listing the worst library books ever, very informative reads - such as:

7 Aug 2009

Backspacer



 
New album artwork by Tom Tomorrow (pen name of editorial cartoonist Dan Perkins)

30 Jul 2009

You now what I used for eat for breakfast?






''You now what I used for eat for breakfast? Cocaine. You know what I used to eat for lunch..? Cocaine''
Watched this last night - far funnier than expected, and these 4 guys are the main reason.

29 Jul 2009

1 Year ago...


...at about 2.25 a.m, this happened:



Happy Birthday Isaac!

22 Jul 2009

On the day of the new moon, in the month of Hiyar

 "On the day of the new moon, in the month of Hiyar, the Sun was put to shame, and went down in the daytime...''

This quote is one of the earliest written records of an eclipse of the Sun, on 3 May 1375 BC, found in the city of Ugarit in Mesopotamia.

So, here's where my confusion lies; There's press coverage of the solar eclipse from India yesterday, wherein people are bathing and praying in the Ganges BECAUSE OF the eclipse. So, you're praying to a planetary phenomena? The polar opposite of anything even vaguely religious happening? Meh?



Aaaanyway - there are quite a few 'standard' photos of the Asian eclipse on the net, but I prefer this one - taken from a plane - to the usual shots. Also, there seems to be a little Channel 4 logo to the lower left. See it? Spooky.

10 Jul 2009

''We choose to go to the Moon...

We choose to go to the Moon in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard.''

40 years ago, on July 14th, 3 guys went for a ride. They landed on July 20th. This photo was taken by Frank Borman.



40 years on from Earth Rise, we are now able to see images like this:



'In October 2008, Hubble aimed its Wide Field Planetary Camera, at a pair of gravitationally interacting galaxies called Arp 147, that lies in the constellation Cetus, and is more than 400 million light-years away from Earth. (for reference - the moon is about 384,400km away.)

The image demonstrated that the camera is working exactly as it was before going offline, thereby scoring a "perfect 10" both for performance and beauty.

The two galaxies happen to be oriented so that they appear to mark the number 10. The left-most galaxy, or the "one" in this image, is relatively undisturbed apart from a smooth ring of starlight. It appears nearly on edge to our line of sight. The right-most galaxy, resembling a zero, exhibits a clumpy, blue ring of intense star formation.'

Not to go all preachy - but imagine looking down from up there, at all the monkeys on Earth fighting over little bits of land, 'our precious turf' to quote Cyrus.

Silly, silly humans.

16 Jun 2009

pressure. warmth



Dry eyes itching
It is summer
Come round again to burn us all

More cars
More citizens
Walking in circles under the leaves of trees,
The petals of flowers
Arctic daylight overstaying its welcome
Teenagers cry out into the 5am darkness
Drunk and high
As old men try to sleep
Dry eyes closed for a few hours
In the cool grey shade

Where the ghosts of old ladies still hide
Nowhere else to go
Nothing else to
Do.

4 Jun 2009

which witch?




This is a witch bottle, and was found 15 minutes from my house... I knew there was something up with this bloody area...
 
From New Scientist:
The salt-glazed jar was discovered 1.5 metres below ground by archaeologists from The Maritime Trust, a Greenwich-based charity that preserves historic sailing vessels. When it was shaken, the bottle splashed and rattled, and an X-ray showed pins and nails stuck in the neck, suggesting that it had been buried upside down. Further computed tomography scans showed it to be half-filled with liquid, which later analysis showed to be human urine. The bottle also contained bent nails and pins, a nail-pierced leather "heart", fingernail clippings, navel fluff and hair. The presence of iron sulphide in the mixture also suggests that sulphur or brimstone had been added.

Witch bottles were commonly buried to ward off spells during the late 16th and 17th centuries, but it is very rare to find one still sealed. During the 17th century, British people often blamed witches for any ill health or misfortune they suffered, says Massey. "The idea of the witch bottle was to throw the spell back on the witch," he says. "The urine and the bulb of the bottle represented the waterworks of the witch, and the theory was that the nails and the bent pins would aggravate the witch when she passed water and torment her so badly that she would take the spell back off you."

3 Jun 2009

Is that all rap is about..?




I found this blog which is a listing of samples used in hip hop records. It's pretty definitive but still ongoing, mad interesting for B-boy geek outs.