angelophile: (Shaun - Nice cup of tea)




LFCC was enjoyable, for the most part because of all the lovely people I got to meet. It was busier than I expected it to be, so fighting the crowds was a bit of a trial, especially when in costume (which was horrifically hot). But it was great to be there and meet a few people I've never had the opportunity to before now.

Highlights of the day for me were:

Getting recognised in costume as Chamber. Not just by a few enthusiastic photographers, but by SIMON SPURRIER AND MIKE CAREY! They both waved me down to talk and share mutual love of the character. Mike Carey was as delightful as ever and especially nice about my cosplay and I got to express gratitude for his returning the character back to his original look. He was sad he hadn't been used since apart from occasional cameos, so I was happy to let him know that Simon's using him in X-men Legacy, so he was going to check that out. Also his love of Bendis' All New X-men makes me want to pick up the book even more.

Simon Spurrier was equally charming (and so handsome. Gosh.) and enthusiastic about seeing a Chamber fan. And hinted that I'll be even more happy with future issues. Eeee! While I was chatting to him, I heard a familiar voice next to me, turned around, and who should it be but my old friend Don Murphy, film producer, over from the States filming Vampire Academy. We've known one another for years, ever since Don managed to get the rights for Transformers, but never met in the flesh before. Big hugs all round and an unexpected joy. And there was enormous pleasure to be had in watching Simon get bludgeoned by Don's enthusiasm.

Being chased down the aisle by a photographer who was desperate to get a shot of me in costume when I didn't hear him at first. That was flattering!

Getting to chat at length with Geoff Senior, Simon Furman, Andrew Wildman and Stephen Baskerville. Those names may not be important to anyone who wasn't a UK comic book reader of a certain generation, but they're the reason I love comics and, in part, how I became a graphic designer. All creators on the wonderful UK Transformers comic (and now the continuation of G1 continuity in Regeneration One). Simon and Geoff created Death's Head, probably my all-time favourite character, who acted as a stepping stone to "proper" Marvel comics. Without them I wouldn't even be a comics fan.

They were all so friendly and generous with their time. I've met Simon before and interacted with Andrew online, but it was absolutely fantastic to meet Geoff Senior, who was probably a bit bemused by my hero-worship, as he doesn't do many cons. But he was a joy to talk to, as was everyone.

Can't wait to see Simon and Geoff's... secret project. Geoff was really enthusiastic about it and said he was having more fun on it than he's had on any professional job. Sounds amazing.

And getting sketches of Grimlock from Andy and Death's Head from Geoff. MY VERY OWN GEOFF SENIOR DEATH'S HEAD. You have no idea how happy that makes me.

Meeting up with Tumblr friends lilprince and iandsharman. Photographic evidence of which is above. Thanks to Ian for the pic.

Dave McKean's interesting and sometimes hilarious panel.

I didn't get any photographs or autographs of celebrities, unfortunately, although Eve Myles walked right past me, surrounded by security and caught sight of many others. I was able to catch the Doctor Who panel that included Dave Starkey (Strax), Louise Jameson (Leela), Frazer Hines (Jamie) and the absolute legend that is David Warner. And, for one hilariously cocked-up moment Dan Yeager from Texas Chainsaw Massacre ("I don't know, I've never watched Doctor Who." "... Why are you here?!") Frazer and Dave were charming and hilarious, Louise charming and enthusiastic and David statesmanlike and half-deaf. It was hugely entertaining.

I was actually really happy with the cosplay in the end, but boy, glad I didn't wear the wig. I was as hot as I've ever been as it was. Did you know that fake leather material absorbs water like a sponge? No? Me neither, until I took the face-piece off after an hour or so and literally had to wring it out. It was horrendous. And still soaking wet now, 24 hours later. And the boots were crippling. Not the most comfortable of cosplays to wear in the height of summer.

Some amazing cosplayers there, and so many. I'll try and gather photos, because I was so terrible taking any myself. Hard to play cosplayer and photographer at the same time. Favourite costumes of the day? Hard to pick, but it's hard to resist awesome kid costumers. There was a Kid Speed there who was delightful and the Slytherin family pictured above.

angelophile: (Chamber - Skottie Young)

It occurs to me that I've posted pics of my Chamber costume everywhere but here. So time to change that!

Things I’ve learned in the process:

  • It’s really hard to get photos taken with a timer in focus.
  • I can’t see a thing when wearing white contact lenses.
  • Black really doesn’t photograph well, which is a problem when it’s all you’re wearing.

  • Here goes:

    Chamber Cosplay 3

    Read more... )

    Home Again

    Jun. 20th, 2010 09:12 pm
    angelophile: (Emma - Flaunt it)
    Back now and the play performances are all done and dusted.

    This play was something of an experiment in a number of ways. Firstly, the material, which broke the mold of the usual farce/murder mystery that a lot of amateur dramatics groups do. We do try and produce more challenging work and David Storey's Home, set in a mental institution, was certainly that. Both for the audiences and for the actors, who had to learn dialogue that was nonlinear, stream of consciousness style wording, with at least two of the characters having a conversation where neither were really listening to what the other were saying. Apparently David Story started writing the play with no setting in mind, just putting down dialogue and letting it evolve naturally. The end result is that the situation of the characters isn't immediately apparent and the relevance of the title may not dawn on a lot of people until the close of the first act as the hints in the dialogue and the characters grow more pronounced.

    So, challenging for the actors, but we also took a chance on the staging.

    Usually we hire the local theatre, which holds around 400 people, spend money on hiring the theatre, lavish sets and, for a number of productions, have played to audiences of as few as 40 people.

    So, this time around we stripped it bare. Staging the play in the Arts Club Centre, which holds around 35 people maximum, no staging, apart from two chairs and a table (as the play calls for) and a cast of just five. The idea being that filling a smaller venue would be more rewarding than having a small audience rattling around in an expensive-to-stage arena.

    And that particular experiment appears to have payed off. We did two performances to pretty much full houses and the intimacy of the venue ensured that, for those of us in the cast, the audience was there with us.

    It's interesting to note the differences between the two audiences. On Friday night the audience picked up the (black) humour in the script and were laughing uproarously from the first, ensuring the cast were picked up and carried along by it. There's some very sharp dialogue and, while the subject matter can be uncomfortable as well, with moments of deep sadness, there's plenty of humour as well and the audience on Friday felt comfortable laughing at lines like: "I always think if the war had been extended another thirty or so years, we'd have all felt the benefit."

    Interestingly, the Saturday night audience were far more restrained. After some laughter in the first half, it faded away in the second. It almost felt like once the setting had become obvious, people started to feel uncomfortable laughing and felt more of the pathos of the script. Certainly I was trying not to corpse during the Friday night performance when my second-act only role seemed to bring the house down. There was no such reaction on Saturday, so no worries about accidentally cracking a smile.

    It was, in that respect, a venue where there was nowhere to hide. The wings, that at one point held four of the cast, our "stage manager" and the prompt, were only about two foot deep before ending in a brick wall. The audience were sat on the same level as us about three feet away from the "stage". Any prompts were audible from the audience. Impressively, given the extremely challenging dialogue, there were very few prompts across the two nights. I avoided it myself, mostly because my role was mostly monosyllabic and down to facial expressions and body language more than any kind of witty dialogue. It was pleasing that the audience were all extremely complementary afterwards and I was hard pressed to get any criticism from anyone, and I felt people were being honest in their opinions. Despite the different reactions on both nights, both audiences seemed to enjoy the material, or, at least, find it thought provoking.

    Also nice was a letter from the author, wishing us luck with the performance. Storey, who also wrote This Sporting Life and numerous award-winning plays, had nice things to say and appeared pleased to see the work performed.

    Also pleasing, the excellent, glowing review by the local drama critic, who didn't appear to have a bad word to say about the performance either.

    All in all, a successful experiment. Perhaps not financially rewarding, but certainly, as a performer and, apparently, for the audiences as well.

    My next challenge? To shed some of the weight I put on for the role.

    angelophile: (Pete Wisdom - Backing Britain)

    Back from the Bristol Expo and, as someone who's not attended before, I have to say I has a bloody marvelous time. I get the impression from what's been said that it's a lot more relaxed (and, if Andy Diggle's anything to go by, lackadaisical) than most cons. I think it was Gary Erskine that said to me that "this is our Christmas party", referring to the opportunity for creators to meet each other and chat to people they've not seen in many years. Likewise, the majority of creators, small and big press alike, seemed happy to hang out with the fans and (in most cases) treat them as equals, during the con and after hours in the bar.

    Understandably, the majority of creators in attendance were British, although some, like Chris Claremont, not resident here and some, like Richard Starkings, are now irregular visitors back home.

    The con itself is spread across two hotels – the Ramada housed the more mainstream panels, artists, signings and retailers, while over in the Mercure, the small and independent publishers ruled the roost, along with the small sci-fi and gaming section. On Saturday, there were signings by some of the minor Star Wars cast, for example, and a legion of Stormtroopers led by Darth Vader wandering around.

    Let me tell you, sharing a lift with a Stormtrooper is quite a surreal experience.

    All rather slapdash and not as clinical as US cons appear to be, with creators tucked into little booths. Lots of banter across the floor instead – while I was getting my sketch of Captain Britain from Mike Collins, Phil Winslade and myself were all chatting about DVD boxed sets and TV series and evasion techniques for avoiding tackling complex stuff (Mike showed a page he'd done for the new Doctor Who comic with an insanely detailed background, where he'd done so much detail to avoid drawing the Matt Smith Doctor for the first time and works unsequentially, while Phil Winslade has to draw each panel on order), all with the occasional aside from Doug Braithwaite.

    Over the two days I was lucky enough to chat to many creators. Some briefly, others less so. I kept bumping into Paul Cornell, for example, from the moment I arrived. Friday night I was swept aside by Paul, Kieron Gillen (Phonogram, S.W.O.R.D., Thor) and others on the way into town and then the first person I saw when I got to the Expo on Saturday was Paul again. It was kinda awkward stalker territory from there on in. Kieron slipped into the Chris Claremont panel on Saturday and sat at (okay, on) my feet, but I didn't get the chance to chat with him until Sunday, when we had a couple of friendly discussions about the panels, Death's Head and how he should totally make an appearance on Doctor Who. Kieron was great.

    That kinda set the tone. I managed long chats with Mike Collins (Batman, Superman, Doctor Who, Captain Britain), Lee Townsend (Punisher, a bunch of Marvel UK and Panini stuff) and the legendary Lew Stringer (Robo-Capers, Combat Colin, Pete and his Pimple, The Beano) while they were doing sketches for me – all exceptionally nice guys and we chatted a lot about Marvel UK. I had briefer, but still very friendly, encounters with Mike Carey (X-men, The Unwritten), David Lloyd (V for Vendetta), Ian Edginton (Victorian Undead, Batman, Stormwatch, 2000AD), Phil Winslade (Howard the Duck, Aquaman, The Flash), Gary Erskine, (Knights of Pendragon, Hellblazer, The Authority, Dan Dare), Chris Claremont (X-men, duh), Neil Edwards (current Mighty Avengers and Fantastic Four artist, who also managed to squeeze in a sketch), Paul Grist (Jack Staff), Sean Philips (Sleeper, Criminal, Marvel Zombies), David Hine (Strange Embrace, District X, Spawn, Son of M), Charlie Adlard (The Walking Dead, such a nice guy), Ian Churchill (Hulk, Uncanny X-Men, Supergirl), Phil Noto (Beautiful Killer, tons of DC stuff) and Richard Starkings (Elephantmen and Comiccraft). With the possible exception of Richard Starkings, who did abruptly blow me off mid-sentence to pounce someone who he obviously hadn't seen in years, (understandable, but he could have handled it better than just blanking me), everyone was a joy to chat to, some very funny, self-depreciating and pleasant people and clearly really enthusiastic about what they do and appreciative of their audience. And despite the fact I got stuck on my own most of the weekend, I never felt awkward because all the creators went out of their way to be friendly and approachable. Including the bonkers Simon Bisley, who I ran into a few times, usually followed by a torrent of good-natured abuse.

    What was impressive was the small press room which, alas, I only discovered on the second day. A special shout out to Tom McNally, who sold me a copy of his weirdly wonderful Semiotic Cohesion book on sheer enthusiasm alone.

    I'll talk about the panels in another post (or two) rather than spam my friends any more in this post, but they were very casual affairs. Possibly to the annoyance of certain panel members (yes, Andy Diggle again), but to the benefit of others (the Marvel panel was informal and all the more hilarious because of it – more of a casual chat and ribbing between creators that the audience were part of). I managed to get a question answered on every panel I attended – we Brits don't tend to push ourselves forwards and most other people seemed too embarrassed to ask anything. More on what was asked to follow.

    I did pick up a few comics and collections and got them signed by the creators. I picked up a copy of Mouse Guard – Autumn 1152 signed by David Peterson, Paul Grist signed Jack Staff: Soldiers for me, Kieron signed a copy of one of his Thor issues, Phil Noto signed a Batgirl issue and the Batman/Doc Savage One Shot (I'm still kinda kicking myself I didn't get a sketch from him but I couldn't join two queues at once and time just ran out and I think he appreciated my not asking when he'd already wound down), Mike Carey signed the first Unwritten trade, Ian Edginton signed all the Victorian Undead issues I bought off him, Lew Stringer signed my Brickman Begins book, and I picked up the Eisner Award nominated Johnny Cash: I See A Darkness, Superman: The Greatest Stories Ever Told, Hulk: Boiling Point and from the small press section, the aforementioned Semiotic Cohesion and A Rope Around Your Broken Neck from Attackosaur Comics.

    Under the cut, all the sketches I bought. Please don't reproduce without asking first.

    Read more... )

    angelophile: (My Little Batman)

    I'm really fricking tired. I have been sleeping just fine. I just haven't been sleeping much. Once I nod off I'm fine, but it's getting to that stage. Five nights on the trot now I've got to sleep at gone 2am, which when I'm up and working the next day is never a good thing. I am feeling a lot better than I was this time last week, though. I'm still not 100% sure what virus I had - no one I know has been ill - but I do know I was as sick as a dog.

    Really looking forward to the Bristol Comics Expo next week. Any other UK bods gonna be in attendance? I have a confession to make, though. I've never been to a comics con before. The only fan con I've ever attended was a Transformers one years ago, which did a lot to convince me that cons could be fun and entertaining social events and not full of scary people at all. Of course, I've also had various meets with the online fandom since, which added to that impression, so I have no doubt I'll have fun and there's a bunch of people I'm looking forward to meeting.

    The fact that I know a couple of other people who are attending, and I'm going with friends is no bad thing either.

    Speaking of which, I need to make my mind up whether I'm going to drive up or get the train. Not sure I can be bothered to drive. It's not that far, but I don't particularly enjoy driving and I'd still have to mess around worrying about parking and shit when I get there. Ho hum. I suppose I'd better make a decision soon.


    Speaking, in a round-about way, of comics, I just finished the Ultimate Invincible Hardcover Collection #5 and I'm just about to start on the Power Girl trade. I should probably try and review the comics I've been reading, shouldn't I? Short version: Invincible is still one of those impossibly consistent reads, which is always entertaining, even if this collection wasn't spectacular. Some problematic scenes, but still, I don't know why this book isn't shifting Spider-man numbers. Mind you, I don't know why Spider-man is.

    Randomly, I also notice that the production company behind The Hurt Locker have taken legal action against 50,000 individuals in the US who downloaded the movie over Bittorrent. So, I guess a lot of us filthy pirates will be watching how that one plays out with interest.

    Rehearsals for the play I'm doing are going well. I don't really have a lot of lines - mostly one word answers, but that's sometimes more difficult than learning long speeches. And I have a lot of action to learn, which I always find tricky - the basics of knowing what door to go through, not so much, but just moving about the stage when I've not got anything to say and making sure I'm out the way when some other bugger enters. It sounds straightforward, but it never is. Still a month until the performance, but there's still a lot of tightening up to do.

    My country has a new government. I think most people are pretending nothing's happened and hoping it all goes away. Or rather, they all go away. The British people made it pretty clear that we wouldn't trust any of them in sole charge of running the country. Most of us probably wouldn't trust them in sole charge of running a bath.

    I'm more interested in the state of play on Great British Menu. Those are the results I'm waiting for.

    And if that wasn't all random enough, here's Keanu Reeves brushing a dog:


    May. 4th, 2010 10:35 am
    angelophile: (Rosencrantz Guildenstern Namebadge)

    It occurred to me that I haven't used Myspace in months and all my social networking stuff's all handled within an unholy trinity of Livejournal, Twitter and Facebook. It's all pretty much self-contained - the daily babble of Twitter feeds both here and through my Facebook, Livejournal updates my Facebook status with links to this blog. It's all very neat.

    But for the interests of providing everyone with their favored way to keep up with me, you can add me to Facebook by clicking on my profile here. Most likely most people who wanted to find me there already have, but...

    Thanks to [ profile] schmevil for the useful link which shows how to restore your privacy settings on Facebook. I've always been wary about giving too much personal information on there, (thus the alias), but it was slightly disconcerting to discover how many apps and stuff like that had access to my account.

    angelophile: (Yellow Submarine Glove)

    I was thinking about the death of Malcolm McClaren earlier and how he was so influential shaping an entire generation, while slipping on my vintage Carter the Unstoppable Sex Machine T-shirt and also wound up slipping 1992 - The Love Album onto my ipod as well. Maybe it was to get the whole theme going, so I could pretend I was a 16 year old indie kid again, or something.

    And then started thinking about music. I've always had a love affair with music. Not a crazed stalker, obsessive vinyl collector type relationship, but a comfortable, regular love affair with occasional kinky sex.

    And listening to 1992 again, it made me realize that it was one of those albums that helped shape my relationship with pop music, back when I was still flailing around trying to work out just who I was and what music called to me.

    There's probably a few of them. Rubber Soul by The Beatles was probably the first album I ever owned, and you can do a whole lot worse when your musical tastes are being formulated. But 1992 was probably the first album that I came to myself as a teenager, during that time when personalities and tastes are just reaching the boil, and acted as a huge stepping stone towards other artists.

    Oh, maybe it wasn't the greatest album ever. In fact, it's definitely not, in any way, shape, or form, despite Carter's tongue-in-cheek claim at the time that they were the most important band in the world. It's all machine gun drum machines, politics and puns, ropey, snarling vocals that struggle with sensitivity before the kitchen sink crashes in and vague guitars.

    But without it I never would have got into Ian Dury. I'd have never been introduced to The Jam, Billy Bragg, The Smiths, The Clash, The Sex Pistols. I probably wouldn't have listened to The Pet Shop Boys beyond West End Girls. I wouldn't have leapfrogged into a whole indie scene, Britpop, punk, electronica - I'd have been stuck listening to light rock. Hell, I wouldn't have even listened to The Man from La Mancha.

    So, what was it for you? What was the pretty album that turned your head and seduced you? Maybe not the most striking one at the party, but the one who took you home and did strange and exciting things to you in the dark?

    Confession time.

    [Poll #1549112]
    angelophile: (Pixie - Scared now)
    Hello, I'm back.

    Of course, last week Spain saw the worst snow and ice storms in decades, with 220,000 left without power and the border to France being closed and various airports snowed in.

    So, guess where I'd gone on holiday?

    To be fair, the weather around Benidorm and Alicante where I fly to wasn't that extreme, but I've been reliably informed by those who remained in sunny Britain that the weather's been better here. Bastards.

    That said, it wasn't appalling - we had a bit of rain, but the last week wasn't too bad really - just a lot colder than I'm used to for Spain. Still, it gave us a chance to do stuff that it's normally too hot to do, like the train trip up to Denia and going up the castle, driving through the mountains or climbing the rock at Calpe.

    Photos may follow once I get the chance to unpack, although it's straight back to work today and already feeling like I've never been away. Alas.

    So, what have I missed? Any developments I should know about? Who won the Oscars? Am I still in time for Gratuitous Butt Shot Week on Scans_Daily? Was that a new Iron Man trailer with bonus Sam Rockwell I saw? Did ECCC really do a Star Wars Burlesque show? Inquiring minds want to know.

    angelophile: (Sex Pistols Weens)
    I've had a bunch of stuff cluttering up my hard drive for ages which I've been meaning to upload. Somehow I rarely get around to posting stuff from the times when I'm bored, the guitar and camera are to hand and it seems like a good idea to fool around. But, anyway, I made the effort tonight, just so I can feel like I've done something creative that isn't entirely work related.

    So, er, enjoy?

    Read more... )
    angelophile: (Murray - Pan horns and beer)
    Er... so, yes, it's been pointed out to me that I haven't spoken about my actual birthday at all. This confusion's arisen from the fact that I celebrated three times (once with one sister and family, last weekend with the other sister and family, on my actual birthday with my parents) and kind of lost track. Um...

    Anyway, first up, many thanks to everyone who wished me a happy birthday. There were lots of you. I'm not sure why it snowballed this year, since for the last few years I've barely remembered my own birthday myself, but the many birthday wishes were touching, so thanks to one and all.

    I hate to disappoint, in that my birthday itself wasn't that exciting. Mostly because I had to work in the run-up to this week's deadline week. So, most of the day was spend sat behind a computer. Admittedly the computer was covered with balloons and bunting, but still work. I did get a nice bottle of wine out of the deal, though.

    In the evening I met up with my parents, who are actually in country this year, after a few years of being off travelling at the time of my birthday. They were dog sitting for my sister, who had a few days away for half-term. We went out to a local Asian restaurant I favour, overlooking Poole harbour, which does a buffet style menu, which meant I got a nice mix of sushi, with a bit of red curry, crispy pork, salt and pepper chicken and kung po thrown in for good measure. The food there certainly covers a wealth of geography, but it'd probably make purists blanche. But I like it.

    We headed back to my sister's for coffee and sat and watched some of Casino Royale before I had to head out. A nice preview to my holiday in ten or so days time, when I'm going out to Spain with them for a few days break. Well, they were going out to their apartment anyway, so for the cost of a flight, it seemed silly not to take a break while I can. No birthday present for me yet - we figured there'd be something on holiday I'd like, so they're going to treat me then.

    It's nice to live a life of luxury.

    Now back to deadline.

    angelophile: (Supergirl Yawn)
    Back home now after a long weekend visiting my sister and family. They were on school holidays this week and, since I couldn't get away later in the week because of impending deadline, I went down earlier. Unfortunately my nephew had chicken pox, so we had to stay away from humanity as a whole and outings out were limited to rather muddy walks in the country.

    It did give me the opportunity to leave my car with a friend of my sister's for a service, which threw up a bunch of problems, such as buggered wishbone bushes, whatever they are. Of course, now the car drives completely differently from how it has been and actually steers around corners rather than taking them sideways. Who knew?

    Back at work now and feeling absolutely knackered. I need either a good night's sleep or drugs. Four days locked in with two young kids will do that to you.

    For those interested, the running total for my birthday gifts so far are:

    Moon DVD
    Primeval Series 3 DVD
    Transformers stationery set and binder

    The only trouble with my family knowing that I'm a Transformers geek is that they don't know their G1s from their Beast Wars or their movieverse from their Animateds. What this means is when they buy me Transformers stuff, in that ironic way that family often does to humour an obsession that they think is daft, I've been getting loads of movieverse stuff. It's just unfortunate that I'm no fan of Michael Bay's invasion of my fandom and I think Bumblebee, for example, looks like a metallic zombie sucking a pacifier. Attempts to educate my family of my preferences have so far failed to stick.

    Does this happen to everyone else? Like, people know you're into comics, so you get bought a copy of the collected trade of Rob Liefeld's Youngblood or something? And, yeah, that's probably a fair comparison. Michael Bay is Rob Liefeld, just without the strangely endearing personality quirks but with the same dislike of feet.

    On another topic, I've been offered the role I auditioned for in that play I was talking about. Rehearsals start on Friday, so I'll try and make it across to pick up the book so I can start learning my words. All 20 of them.

    angelophile: (Lebowski - Got Milk?)
    Meme rules:

    List seven habits/quirks/facts about yourself.
    Tag seven people to do the same. Do not tag the person who tagged you or say that you tag "whoever wants to do it" (I'm not going to nag anyone into this, so there. If you wanna do it, do it.)

    1. I have a fondness for hats. I own a number of hats, including a couple of fedoras, a handmade Panama actually from Panama, a few baseball caps, a stetson, a rain hat, a flat cap, a couple of trapper hats and a few wooly hats. I don't own a bowler hat, but think I probably should.

    2. My favourite word in the English language is "flange".

    3. I dislike talking on the phone, especially to people I've spoken to before, if I have time to worry about it. Ring me out of the blue? No problem. If I'm going to ring someone and have time to think about it before hand, I tend to work myself up into a state of nervousness about it. I don't know why this is, or why I get nervous and babbily. Perhaps a moose landed on my head when I was on the phone in a previous life or something.

    4. One joint on the little finger of my left hand is double jointed. This is entirely useless.

    5. I have a phobia of heights. But not in the usual sense. I'm absolutely fine with being on top of a big building and looking down. No problems. What I am nervous about is standing ground level and looking up at something. Looking up at really high ceilings, for example, in cathedrals or similar, makes me terribly nervous. I could barely stand to look up in the Basilica di Santa Maria del Fiore in Florence, the height of the dome made me brick myself. Presumably it's another roll over from that moose dropping onto me from above in a previous life.

    6. I don't have a signature. I never got around to settling on one, so whenever I'm signing legal documents or signing anything like a credit card receipt queues can form after me while I write my name out in full. I'm now stuck with this, obviously.

    7. I have a terrible attention span. I'm very flakey. I'm forever starting things and then not
    angelophile: (Marvin - Quote)
    In some ways it's quite depressing when you read up about pop icons from your teenage years and discover they're no longer involved in the business, never made those millions and are doing day-to-day jobs.

    For example, Miki from Lush, one of the reasons I have a fondness for bottle redheads in black tights, now being, in her words, an "office worker" and mom. (Apparently she's an assistant editor for some magazine or another.) Or Myles Howell from Kingmaker, who went from working at Homebase to the Hull Daily Mail. Or the members of Elastica (Justine Frischmann - an abstract artist somewhere in the US. Donna Matthews, a student at Dartington College of Arts and head of the Christian Union.) Or more depressing, like Martin Gilks from the Wonderstuff, dead in a road accident at 41 or Liam Maher of Flowered Up, also dead at 41 from a drugs overdose.

    On the other hand, it's quite nice to know stuff like Ian Dench from EMF winning an Ivor Novello Award for co-writing Beyonce's Beautiful Liar. Or Clint Mansell from Pop Will Eat Itself going on to score a bunch of movies, including Requiem for a Dream, The Wrestler, Moon and Golden Globe nominated for The Fountain.

    (Incidentally, during the course of my search, I did discover that I still find Tanya Donnelly from Belly and The Throwing Muses distractingly attractive and apparently 15 years isn't long enough to make a mad crush vanish.)

    But in some ways, it's reassuring that there's plenty who are just living normal lives. Fame's fleeting and, at the end of the day, a lot of the people I grew up thinking of as famous are, basically, now doing similar jobs to me, living the same kind of life, the same kind of worries and day-to-day grind. It's a strange way to look at it, but I do start thinking "hmmm, I've not got it so bad. I'm doing as well as anyone else." Sure, I never had that moment in the spotlight, but who wants to be chasing that their entire lives? And when you get it, what happens? It's soon back to the clean up on aisle three.

    So, I guess, at the end of the day, I'm quite happy with my lot. I've never really put what talents I have to great use, but I've not wasted my life any more than anyone else either.

    I think I'd probably rather be happy with my lot and to have accomplished what I set out to (ie: not much) than be someone who entered showbusiness, made a bit of cash for other people, then retired back to the normal life.

    Normal's underrated.

    angelophile: (Paranoia at 11)
    It's one of those weeks, where the Twitter feed updates are likely to take over, just because I don't usually find the time to make extended posts. (IE. It's deadline.) I'm actually starting to wonder about the Twitter feed, though. Is it annoying? Do people read my updates directly on Twitter anyway? Do people miss the random links dump that the Twitter's pretty much replaced? How about a poll?

    [Poll #1493431]

    As usual, I write this blog mostly for myself, but I do like to hear feedback on content and it's a few months since I last asked.

    I know I'm behind on certain things that last poll brought up - I haven't done any comic reviews in an age (mostly because I'm really behind with me reading - there doesn't seem much point reviewing a book that came out a month before, since it'll have already been discussed to death on Scans_Daily and elsewhere) and I'm a couple of days behind on my sales figures thing - I'll try to get to that later.

    I think I've been hitting the book reviews quota, though, although now, with Harry Potter out the way, I'm almost out of new material to read - can anyone make any recommendations?

    angelophile: (Depressed Angel)
    Was looking through my photos from New York. Brought it home how staggering and incomprehensible the scale of the events of September 11th 2001 were.

    Read more... )
    angelophile: (Yellow Submarine Glove)
    Using ONLY SONG TITLES from ONE artist, answer these questions:

    1. Are you a male or female: "Nowhere Man"

    2. Describe yourself: "Here, There, and Everywhere"

    3. How do you feel about yourself: "I'm a Loser" "I'm So Tired"

    4. Describe your ex boyfriend/girlfriend: "I'm Happy Just to Dance with You"

    5. Describe your current boy/girl situation: "Tomorrow Never Knows"

    6. Describe your current location: "We Can Work It Out"

    7. Describe where you want to be: "I'm Only Sleeping"

    8. Your best friends are: "Across the Universe"

    9. Your favorite color is: "For You Blue"

    10. You know that: "Everybody's Got Something to Hide Except Me and My Monkey"

    11. What’s the weather like: "Rain"

    13. What is life to you: "Getting Better"

    14. What is the best advice you have to give: "Think for Yourself"

    15. If you could change your name, what would it be: "I Am the Walrus"

    Thanks John, Paul, George, Ringo, Fred and Jeremy Hillary Boob.

    angelophile: (Labyrinth - worm allo)
    I'm not going to tag anyone else to do this. Just have a stab at it if it takes your fancy.

    7 Things You Probably Don’t Know About Me

    1. I am of noble blood. Well, at least, one of my ancestors was Sergeant of the Buckhounds to Henry VIII, Edward VI and Queens Mary and Elizabeth I and on my mother's side, I am descended from French aristocracy who fled to England during the Revolution. Being part French is to my eternal shame.

    Which leads me to:

    2. My surname has its origins around the Old English meaning pyre/ash-heap/pile and most likely at the time of the Black Death, my family lived near one of the mass funeral pyres for burning the bodies of the infected and took their name from it.

    3. I've probably read Charlie and the Chocolate Factory more times than any other book in my life. Runner up would be Wind in the Willows, and when I was a kid, I always used to skip the chapter in the book "The Piper at the Gates of Dawn" where the god pan aids Rat and Mole to help find Otter's missing son. And still only have the vaguest idea what it's all about.

    4. I once met Roy Castle, record breaker, Doctor Who companion (in the movies, anyway), dancer, singer, comedian, actor, television presenter, musician, agoraphobic and all round renaissance man. Lovely chap.

    5. My favourite food is actually Toad in the Hole, although I have a love affair with all types of curry - somewhat surprisingly as, until my late teens, I never liked any kind of hot and spicy food.

    6. I've never broken a bone or had a similar serious injury in my life. I do have a number of scars, though, for various reasons.

    7. The top joint of the little finger on my left hand is double jointed.
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