Tuesday, June 29, 2004

With Hindsight, Irradiating My Genitals Was A Mistake…

Yes, putting my phone in my pocket is A Very Bad Thing, say scientists. Ah well, I wasn't using them much anyway.

On a not-really-related subject, there are posters up all over Manchester advertising the “Ladyboys of Bangkok Thai Spice Tour” (Alan Partridge references at the ready, now!). My question is this: what happens in the show? We’re talking about people whose main talent is to be men who appear to be women. Do they stand on stage for two hours saying “I’m not really a woman, y’know!”? If so, I’m not sure it’ll work with a Manchester audience.

Yesterday I saw “Lost In Translation”. I quite liked it, even though the main story is hardly there. I did wonder about how the Japanese felt about being portrayed as a nation of raving lunatics who speak English hilariously. Fortunately, Bill Murray is great. I’m not sure I enjoyed it as much as that film with him and the elephant in, though.

Friday, June 25, 2004

No Future In England's Dreaming

So it turns out we are just another country. I knew these things of course, which makes my anger last night somewhat surprising. Most of you have never seen me angry, to quote a rubbish film. However, I did manage not to riot in the streetys, or taunt any Portuguese hotel workers.

Fortunately, light relief is provided by the Stockport Express, currently running with the headline "Heaton Chapel Man Is King of Chat-Ups". It's not me, if you were wondering.

Tuesday, June 22, 2004

In Which I Am 23

Yes I am. There is evidence that I'm now a grown-up in the presents that I got. My mum and dad, for example, gave me a copy of Fernand Braudel's "Memory and the Mediterranean".

I've just come from my new job in Marketing. By which I mean putting Vimto flyers in envelopes, obviously. Only two hours work, but better than nothing...

Monday, June 14, 2004

This Spectating Life

So, this weekend has been spent with The Uni People in Nottingham, and much fun was had by me. Hopefully by other people too. I ended up watching rather a lot fo sport. What with Sunday being such a nice day, I accompanied a mixed band of medics to Trent Bridge to watch the test. Gratifyingly, England managed to beat New Zealand on the very day we'd chosen to go.

Some of my foreign readers may require a few notes on the game of cricket. It is a sport which consists of micro-bursts of excitement encompassed within long periods of almost nothing happening. It was invented as a method of persuading English people to go outside during the summer, whatever the weather. It is therefore neccessary to invent your own excitement for some of the game. Hence the sub-sport of crowd-watching.

If I was much smarter than I am I'd probably say something frightfully clever about how you can see the class system in operation at cricket. In the pavillion sit the members, bedecked in Panama hats, who will under no circumstances join in a mexican wave. The rest of the stands are filled with comparativly normal people.

One stand, however, is filled with the beery, chanting mass of the "barmy army". "Barmy" enough to pay to go to a cricket match and then keep chanting "stand up if you love football". Alcohol plays an important part in their activities. As I was spending several hours sat in the sun, I didn't take advantage of the hideously-priced beer.

With hindsight, this was a mistake: if I'd drunk all afternoon I'd then have been able to piss it away, thus providing a handy bodily metaphor for the performance of the England football team on Sunday night.

Wednesday, June 02, 2004

Rising Sun/Midnight Sun, And Other Cliches

Sunday saw me and my Dad go to the City of Manchester Stadium to watch Japan play Iceland at football - don't ask why. It was a good enough game (Japan won 3-2, if you're insanely curious), but the crowd was really the fun part. Manchester's Japanese community was out in force, with digital cameras aplenty. Despite being vastly outnumbered, though, the Icelandic fans (all five of them) still managed to sing the loudest.

The other culture shock was the sheer number of attractive Japanese women in the stadium, which begs the question as to how one chats someone up at a football match. This isn't something most English people have any experience of, as English football crowds consist mostly of sweaty, hairy guys who are intent on consuming as many of the pies as possible.