Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Nigella

...Hmm, as I am off work at the moment, I am 'lucky' enough to be experiencing the delights of ITV's daytime TV schedule. Am currently watching 'Nigella'. Now, I like Nigella Lawson. She is an attractive, erudite woman who likes her food! However, this is a terrible vehicle for her... She is stilted, self conscious and seems faintly bored by her guests. Today, we have Sally Lindsay (Shelly from Corrie) who is talking diets and body shapes with Nigella: In any normal capacity, this would be interesting but it just comes across as faintly twee and unnatural. In some ways, I wish Charlie would appear and bump her off for good!

Stick to cooking Nigella!

At least it's better than the interminable hideous Fiona Phillips cutting umbilical cords as witnessed last week - yeeeuuccch.

Sunday, July 17, 2005

Anxiety

...Am currently suffering quite badly from this hideous condition. Have had it before and it has reared its head again due to stress at work and lowering the dose of my medication......

I feel very sorry for anybody that suffers from this - it is grotesque. At the back of my head is a constant feeling of panic, breathlessness, that something terrible is 'about to happen'. Of course, it never does, it's all in my head - psychosamatic. That doesn't make it any easier.. I WILL get better I just need to keep increasing my medication and taking things easy. Am going slowly mad in the house at the mo though as am soooo bored. I can't really concentrate to read properly 9which is a terrible shame as is my favourite past-time). Still, anybody suffering - just remember that you're not alone. This debilitating condition CAN be beaten but is does unfortunately take time; it's not an overnight process.

Special thanks to Mr H - he has been an absolute gem and I couldn't get through it all without him.

Friday, July 01, 2005

Recommended books

When I have time, I would like to review all these books, but at the moment, I am simply recommending them highly:

Atomised - Michel Houllebec
Platform - Michel Houllebec
My life as a fake - Peter Carey
Disgrace - J M Coetzee
Becoming Strangers - Louise Dean
Whit - Iain Banks
Hey, Nostradamus - Douglas Copeland
Eleanor Rigby - Douglas Copeland
Atonement - Ian McEwan
The Line of Beauty - Alan Hollingshurst
The Honeymoon - Justin Haythe (astonishing for a first novel)
Happiness - Justin Cartwright
White Lightning - Justin Cartwright.
Riven Rock - TC Boyle
The Tortilla Curtain - TC Boyle

Books I have read recently and wasn't keen on:

Cloud Atlas - David Mitchell: Excellently written, too long, not enough connection between the stories
Small Island - Andrea Levy - Weak story, found it boring. It did not live up to the hype in my opinion.

Wednesday, June 29, 2005

Book Review - Saturday by Ian McEwan

I have a love/hate relationship with McEwan. I find the way he makes novels out of impossibly implausible situations and relationships both genius and repellent in equal measure. I despised Enduring Love and gave up with it halfway through as I found it utterly absurd, however, Atonement is one of my favourite books. Part of the reason Atonment works is that it is written through the eyes of a child; so misconstrued situations and events have an air of tangible reality that would otherwise be lacking.

Saturday has as its central protagonist Henry Perowne, a successful neurosurgeon, with the ubiquitous successful career, beautiful home and vaguely dysfunctional family. The novel is based on a 24 hour period in his life (a Saturday funnily enough, hence the title). His day starts in the early hours of the morning when he sees a plane on fire circling round the post office tower opposite his window. This precipitates all sorts of thoughts on societal and family conditions and the post 9/11 society. The war demonstrations are a clever device that keep the themes central whilst providing an interesting storyline that heightens pace as the story progresses.

Perowne progresses through his day; we see him trawling through the traffic, going to the fishmongers to buy food for the family's reunion in the evening (his daughter and father in law are coming over from France - and reuniting for the first time since an argument 3 years previously). A minor incident sees him meeting Baxter, a troubling man who Perowne can see has something very wrong with him. Baxter returns to the novel later, in what I found rather an unlikely scenario; however, it works because it retains the readers interest. The intricacy of the novel is startling and I was gripped. The only boring bit of the story for me was a description of a squash match and a rather pointless music rehearsal that just seemed a bit too much of an obvious device. That aside, a beautifully written and thought provoking novel. Recommended.

Monday, June 20, 2005

Hated celebrities

..Of course, amongst the book reviews, this blog has got to be dedicated to celebrities or schhhaaaalllaaabbrrrriities as Avid Merrion refers to them. I don't actively 'hate' any celebrities but I loathe some of them with a passion.......

Kate Moss - minger

Victoria Beckham - talentless minger.

Calum Best - the personality of a crumb

Fiona Phillips - an abomination of humanity

Eammon Holmes - see above

Kerry Katona/McFadden - big titted cokehead who made a crust out of the breakup from her crummy husband

'Elizabeth' Hurley - fatuous, imbecilic, bikini wearing moron

Carol Vorderman - hideous, repulsive queen of detox



Any contestant from BB, CLI, I'm a Celebrity get me out of Here, Driving School, Fame Academy



Thanks to all for your comments - keep 'em coming! Special thanks to Wonderduck for mentioning Formula 1 peeps whom I have never heard of - makes me feel cultured and if I can learn something about Formula 1 then I can argue (even more) with Mr H about motor racing!

Have realised I also have a deep seated loathing for:

Jodie Marsh - a car crash excuse of a woman
All the cast of EastEnders - purely for being in this sorry excuse of a programme.

I will write more later - need to update my book review section - it's just too bloody hot to do ANYTHING at the moment....... Roll on winter!

Reality TV

As an offshoot of the TV Review thread, I wanted to say that I bloody love reality TV! At the moment of course, I am concentrating upon Big Brother and Celebrity Love Island. One takes 12 z-listers to a desert island and waits for them to shag; another takes a potential group of z-listers and puts them in a house... and waits for them to shag!! All thoroughly dismal and a sad indictment of our shallow and vapid society - but cracking entertainment nonetheless!

Just glad that The Tatmuss has been voted out of CLI. The woman who became famous through fucking an (alleged) rapist is now whining about her privacy being violated etc.. etc.. Hmm, well then why don't you just disappear ya tub o' lard? Of course, The Danan has been top entertainment and I am amazed that he and La Tatmuss did not 'get it on' him being a psychotic sex pest n' all. The true star of the show though is Kelly Brook. A beautiful, stunning woman, who is so talentless, vapid and wooden, she makes the cast of Hollyoaks look like a Stanislavski advanced class. Next to her, the interminably smug and charmless Patrick Kielty looks like Seinfeld.

Now to BB - a bit more muted than the previous series - until a fight/fire/murder breaks out of course. As a group, they are pretty awful. On Friday we saw the eviction of super soarway stunna Sam - a woman so lacking in personality she makes Kelly Brook like Joan Rivers (d'ya see a theme emerging here)!! Of course, everybody who 'loathed' Sam (hate is too strong a word for people off the telly) are all just jealous fat mingers ;-) Speaking of which, I thought Lesleh was crackingly funny in a cheap northern car-crash kinda way. The women who are left: Makosi, Vanessa and Saskia are OK, Vanessa is pointless, Saskia's jugs have been in The People and Makosi is an attention seeking spoilt Madam - she will no doubt win!

Maxwell is a mockney twerp 'off the hook' but I don't despise him - he just seems despertaley immature, as does his partner in Crime Anthhhony (has he reached puberty yet)?

Endemol have now sent in 3 more 'moles' into their secret garden - a decor so unsubtle it makes Kat Slater's make up look understated. There's a fat bird, a thin bird and a complete raging queen...

My Job

.....Is possibly the most boring pointless and inane occupation ever... I work in telesales for a large international publisher. It's 10.30 now and I have been to the toilet 5 times, surfed the internet, answered my phone and posted on a 'why EastEnders is crap' forum ;-) The office is like a morgue today - most normal people are either on holiday or have taken the proverbial hot weather sickie - now why didn't I think of that (!)

You may well ask - why do I stay in this abyss of mediocrity? Well, it pays the bills, the commission isn't bad and there is absolutely no stress involved at all. Also, I'm not getting any younger (but then who is) so if I want kids in the next year or so there could be worse places to get a big maternity package from!

My job is so intolerably pointless that this is probably the only post I will make about it as any readers may well fall asleep listening to all this interminable drivel! If you hate your job, or if you have any comments to make about the job world at all, then please post here - I would be interested to read all your thoughts.

My dream job would be journalism. One of my icons is Julie Burchill. The woman can be an attention seeking retard but bloody hell she can write! I don't always agree with what she says but I love her style - vicious, malicious and delicious! I even bought her book on Diana, Princess of Wales (who I'm ashamed to say I loathed) and that was all good rant material!

Sunday, June 19, 2005

TV Reviews

This is just a mish-mash of telly stuff; if you don't like soaps or reality TV then probably won't be of interest!!

Getting in a lather

Of course, when really bored, there's always the trusty soaps. My evening usually starts with Emmerdale (as I said I lead a rich and fulfilling life), or to give it its other title Chlymidia and tractors... There's more boffing in this show than in the average porn film. To cap it all, we have a 15 year old girl who's just dropped a sprog and a lesbian schizophrenic vet who's created a baby with the yorkshire dales answer to Darren Day.... Looks like Dazza is about to commit his worst after a visit from social services... Ooo-er.


Tonight, Dazza flipped out and attempted to rape the elsbian schizophrenic vet. Nasty and not suitable for pre-watershed viewing.

For totty, we have The King brothers, who have the combined IQ and charisma levels of tuna in brine. One of them (the good looking one) is getting his end away with Marilyn from Home and Away.. Whatever would Mr Fisher say?



EastEnders doesn't merit a mention.

Corrie - tomorrow.

Corrie is boring at the mo - I am not interested in Charlie and Shelley. Bring back Richard Hillman!! (Although technically impossible because he's dead - but hey that doesn't stop EE bring back 'dirty' den... yeuch)!

Book Review - Blindness by Jose Saramago

This is a work of genius, one of the best books I have ever read. This is prose writing at its finest and starkest, and I was enthralled from start to finish.

In an un-named city, an anonymous narrator recounts the time when an epidemic of blindness starts with a man in a car going blind at the traffic lights. The blindness is unusual, in that instead of darkness, the victims see a 'milky whiteness'. He visits the doctor, whom upon treating him and reading up on this, goes blind himself. The situation spirals out of control and the thousands of blind people are thrown into a disused mental asylum and put into quaranatine. Cleverly, one of the inmates stays able to see (the doctors wife) but pretends that she is blind in order to stay with her husband. Meanwhile, a group of blind thugs, plays havoc in the asylum, stealing food, demanding valuables in return for food etc....

There are moments of total bleakness; the asylum is a disgusting and horrific setting with excrement everywhere, murder, mutilation and bloodshed. Despite this, the central protagonists manage to retain their humanity and there are moments of total beauty mixed in to all this nihilism.

As I mentioned, the writing is bleak and there is little punctuation or paragraphs used. This to me, adds to the sheer intensity of the writing - which is breathtaking.

I won't give away the ending but I wholeheartedly recommend this book to anyone with a soul. 10/10. Outstanding.

Book reviews - Herzog - Saul Bellow

...Along with my celebrity rants, I'm going to attempt to retain a frisson of intellectualism by writing book reviews. I read a lot (I lead a rich and fulfilling life too but I read loads, mostly on my 20 minute bus journey to and from work).

One thing I hate doing most, and which I have just succumbed to, is giving up with a book before the end. I did this with 'Herzog' by Saul Bellow. A formidable american literary God, of that there is no doubt, but I just found this book too taxing and too heavyweight for my current literal pursuits. I did get to page 170 though, so feel slightly smug (but not that smug);-)

Moses Herzog is a fading jewish intellectual, who has a seriously fucked up marriage behind him and a series of questionable relationships with women. Unsurprisingly, he has an embitterred, somewhat sexist view towards women, frequesntly referring to them as 'bitches' and describing their physical characteristics. He is a depressive and is nearing breaking point as the book proceeds. We get to hear of his background; his family, friends and women.

As part of the process of 'losing his mind' he starts writing mad, rambling letters to everybody from Eisenhower, to Hegel, to the clergyman who converted his wife. Some of these letters border on the genius, some of them are rambling, intellectualised monologues, full of pedagogy and polemic. If I was in a more studious mood, I would have probably persevered, but it all became too 'clinical'. Bellow is obviously a formidable intellectual, and this is a superb book but it's one that I'm just not in the mood for reading at the moment!

Have just started 'Eleanor Rigby' by Douglas Copeland. Will review this when I've finished.

Wednesday, June 01, 2005

Greetings!

I've got chronic PMT and am feeling very nasty, so it's time to slag off as many celebrities as is humanly possible in 1 minute:

Hugh Grant - talentless wanker
Pete Doherty - hanging off the coat-tails of his skinny, freak faced, gak spluttered whore of a girlfriend
Sam from BB - 'Ooh, I like sex me'. Twerp
Jordan - Garguantan mammaried tango, engaged to a gimp
Renee Zellwegger - 'I'm fat. I'm thin. I'm married'
Martine McCutcheon - Nooooooooooooooo

I think you get the idea. Off for some anadin extra and more later. Bye schweeeeeeeeeties

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