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! Cant impart too much information as I would have to kill you with my bare hands

Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Time Out

Ive been feeling dreadful for the past few days, the antibiotics are playing havoc with my system so Im getting some respite at the mo, I will drop by all the wonderful blogs I read soon.. Thanks

Friday, July 27, 2007


The Boy who Kicked Pigs - Tom Baker
When thinking about Tom Baker everyone of my generation equates him as being 'The Doctor' from Doctor Who for others he may be the oddball voice over of Little Brittan. Theres a dark side to this guy, a very dark side, he chooses the road less travelled in the ravines of his mind and on the way pulls out disturbing stories like this.
The plot is quite simple; 13-year-old Robert Caligari is like most 13 year old boys thoroughly evil. Robert gets his kicks from kicking pigs. He has a humiliating experience with a bacon sandwich, after which he comes to the conclusion that it is the whole Human Race that he despises. He sees himself as a champion of all the animals that the Human Race hates Rats, spiders, snakes and sharks. This leads him down a very dangerous path and towards an exceedingly gruesome end. Robert Caligari Displays himself to a deeply nasty, twisted youth with a vendetta against everything pork related, and his tale is debauched foray into the fantasies and mindset of deranged boy who could be the devil himself if he wasn't so funny and oddly likeable. You won't like for a second the things he does, but you can't help but get a kick out of it.

Imagine Tim Burton but much nastier; Tom Baker weaves a modern fairy tale of rats, tarantulas, dead hollowed out trees, bull terriers, and pigs that really do fly - in a manner of speaking. And the creepy, stylish drawings by David Roberts add that extra level of nastiness to it. It's like a book of bedtime stories that fell in with the wrong crowd and got pierced in weird places.

The book was written as a children’s book, but there is enough meat in it to engross an adult reader. It is filled full of observations on normal everyday life and advice like being nice to people in authority (mainly because it really annoys them). I found it a truly engrossing and at times disturbing read, but one I happily go back to again and again.

I would however advise caution on giving it to kids as it does have a particularly gruesome and unpleasant ending.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

A Bell for my Neck

This is no fantasy. No careless product of a wild imagination. We are not dealing here with idle supposition
General Horsefly. A warped, would-be dictator. His only feeling is contempt. His only desire is to command
Wasp. Your only feeling is for the vicious General. your only desire -- to rule at his side. Mosquito. You are without words and without thought. Yours is a brute force. Together these three are responsible for the darkest episode in Judith's Leg history, the one attempt at insurrection against her reasoned way of life.

(General Horsefly in the shadow of insect repellent spray -phantom zone strength - held aloft by Judith)
‘You alone will condemn us if you wish. Judith , and you alone will be held responsible by me. I swear it! No matter that it takes an eternity! You will bow down before me..’.
The grey mass of the insect repellent has entered through the spray duct and closes down on the insects
...Both you, and then one day, your heirs!

I woke up over the weekend with a limb that suspiciously looked like it belonged to John Merrik. It could only be an Insect bite, but I couldn’t figure out what kind because A we don’t have any bed bugs B if it where a bite surely it could only have been a mosquito, wasp or horsefly with the humid weather we have been having as of late. My leg felt like it was on fire,swollen like a balloon and was tender as fuck owee owee owee!. A cold pack was administered and cold cloths for the swelling to go down but even whilst resting aloft on cushions it did not seem to help much. So Im on a course of antibiotics now from the doc, and Im still walking with a peculiar gait and the leg is still tender. The swelling has gone down 50% but my leg still feels leprous..

Friday, July 20, 2007


I’ve often stated my opposition and position on cats. I don’t tolerate them well, even physically I’m allergic to them. If we are to get down to the brass tacks of the root of the matter, they are the freeloaders of the domestic pets and smarmy with it. Kind of like a unemployed partner who gets to sleep all day, good meals, affection on tap, care etc and gives nothing in return. Our wolf is not impressed with them at the moment either as her face is nearly hanging off her with the ringworm she’s contracted from the feral cats in the yard. However there are always exceptions in any animal society that stand out from the crowd - making them….well exceptional. And they have made their owner somewhat famous and a pretty penny also. Whilst I cannot pick just one of his works out I have made a selection of 3 books of his as ‘appetisers ‘ if you will, Dianas Story, The Cat who came in from the cold, & Enough to make a Cat laugh..

Originally from Matlock in the UK, his first novel was ‘Diana’s Story’ is an account of his wife’s long running battle with ME. Diana was reliant on Deric, for the majority of her needs, throughout her illness but she held on fiercely to her independence until the last. Ultimately and inevitably Diana dies, but the book is not about her death; rather, it’s a celebration of her life and the impact she had on those around her. It sounds like just another sad autobiography, but the truth is, it is so much more than that. This book is funny. Each catastrophe, and each new medical problem, some of which would have ordinary people in despair, is seen by the participants from the funny side and narrated as such by Deric. “I guess you had to have been there” moments abound through this book, but thanks to the narrative skills , the reader feels that they were indeed “there” and can picture the moment perfectly. Incidents such as Diana falling downstairs, whilst the house is empty and breaking her arm, yet lying there painting the woodwork while she waits for assistance has the reader simultaneously in tears and in laughter. Upon arrival at the hospital, a nurse enquires of Diana what happened this time, and to a packed waiting room she announces that he hit her again, because his egg wasn’t cooked correctly.
Deric, Diana and the nurse burst into laughter whilst the waiting room looks on, horrified.
Incidents such as these abound throughout the book, mixing laughter with tears in such a way that the book turns into one of those you cannot put down. You can feel the raw emotions coming through the page, sadness, resignation, love, grief, hilarity and acceptance; often all in the same sentence.
Deric also wrote of another loss in his life which was made into a movie ‘Lost for words’. Which was about the relationship and downward spiral of his mothers Alzheimer’s condition. My mother read the latter and recommended I read it since we had just lost my Nana to an eight year battle with the dignity stripping condition. His use of humour and positivity where a tonic for the spirit, especially since I had just suffered a huge personal loss myself. His ability to envelope the reader completely in his world was a much needed diversion from torment of a broken and destroyed heart. I bought every book of his and sat down for two weeks in an effort to turn the grief into laughter and Longden can only be described as a magician of words for me.
In the cat that came in from the cold Deric Longden’s neighbour Patrick, has just acquired a kitten but doesn’t seem to be very responsible. It’s raining and the kitten is outside. His intentions are only to temporarily rescue it from the elements and return it back to Patrick. Deric’s life however is going to change dramatically and somehow a kitten will become a new focus in his life. Longden confesses he was never a cat-lover but he and his wife, English novelist Aileen Armitage, adopted the stray and named him Thermal after he nearly froze in their refrigerator and recounts the misadventures of a high-energy cat who eats peanut butter, cavorts with dachshunds, shreds envelopes while sitting in a wastebasket and stays away from home for a full month. The cheerfully busy household expands when a second adoptee, Tigger, turns the cellar into a halfway house for roving neighborhood cats. As Thermal changes from an ankle-rubbing sycophant to a toilet-roll-spinning terror, it's touching to watch Longden's affection for and understanding of his feline friend blossom

In Enough to make a cat laugh’ Deric mainly writes now about his life with his wife and his army of his cats -the likes , dislikes and special personalities of his feline family; Thermal, Tigger, Arthur and Frink , sharing with the reader warm, amusing and entertaining anecdotes. And when not talking about his cats Deric also makes the most ordinary occurrences luminous , looking at the absurdities of life and stopping to actually think about what is said and done and putting a different slant on things. Here is one such example of him visiting a deli in the supermarket ‘As I stood there my eyes were drawn to a small sign that had been rammed deep into an innocent sausage roll. “Free-Range Pork Pies“. Instantly my mind was off once more, this time to a sunny knoll atop a flower-sprinkled meadow somewhere deep in the heart of the English countryside where a couple of rather mature Melton Mowbrays were keeping a watchful eye on their individual pork pies as they romped gaily amongst the buttercups and daisies below" The book chronicles a year in the life of the Longden household, starting with spring then summer, autumn and finishing with winter. New members of the family include Arthur’s wire brush and a sultana called Ralph – but you will have to read the book if you want to know more about these two! This is a book guaranteed to make you laugh if you have any connection with cats in the house yourself but, on the other hand, it is equally able to give you an understanding of cats , their owners and the bond they have. I still don’t like them though

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Windows of the Soul

When I was a young child our school had 'tours' rather than field trips. There would be an average of about 2 a year usually to the Zoo or to the theatre at christmastime. The Natural History museum and art galleries where my favorites as the 'tour' mix was rehashed each year, they never ventured out of the security of the theatres and museums; much to the pupils dismay . For a geek child like me I was really happy with the tried and tested formulae, (thinking back, there must have been a touch of Martin from the simpsons about me back then).
The`Hugh Lane Municipal Gallery of Ireland was one such port of call on a 'tour'. I remember the topical exhibition for that particular day well as it was exhibiting toy designs through the ages (guaranteed to capture the attention of all 11 year olds). In one section of the building there was a 'dark room' , dark so much as it was black marble walls with sections cut out which illuminated the stained glass works of an artist called Harry Clarke. I was enchanted when I seen Keats' The eve of St Agnes' with its fairytale qualities, the lusciousness of color and incredible detail. I remember buying all the postcards available of his works in the museum shop afterwards. I was hooked. My teacher at the time gave me the address's of various churches and places where his works where in situ in Dublin. They became regular haunts of mine when I got older and more independent, appreciating it that little bit more of this Oh so impeccably rendered work.
As you can see from his style he is quite original. His use of Cobalts, indigos and emeralds give his subject content a more spectral and otherworldly quality . He has been described as Ireland’s greatest stained-glass artist and arguably the finest of his time in any country. On top of that, he was an illustrator of genius and wide range, particularly in black and white, whose works in this field have been collectors’ items for decades. Born in Dublin to Joshua Clarke, a Stained glass manufacturer, Harry, when 16 completed his education in his main field, and travelled to London, where he sought employment as a book illustrator. Picked up by the famous London publisher George Harrap, divined his genius and hired him, on the spot, to provide illustrations for an edition of Andersen's Fairy Tales in both a trade and deluxe edition - almost unheard of for an untested, unknown and very young illustrator he started with two commissions which were never completed: Samuel Taylor Coleridge's The Rime of the Ancient Mariner (his work on which was destroyed during the 1916 Easter Uprising) and an illustrated edition of Alexander Pope's The Rape of the Lock.Difficulties with these projects made Hans Christian Andersen's Andersen's Fairy Tales his first printed work , this was closely followed by an illustrations for an edition of Edgar Allan Poe's Tales of Mystery and Imagination. The latter of these made his reputation as a book illustrator . The last of these is perhaps his most famous work, and prefigures the disturbing imagery of 1960s psychedelia. It's very important to realize that Clarke wasn't just illustrating books. To only consider this aspect of his creativity is greatly misleading. Illustrations may have paid the early bills, but stained glass was his career.Unfortunately, ill health plagued both the Clarke brothers, and worn down by the pace of their work, and perhaps the toxic chemicals used in stained glass production, both died within a year of each other -- Harry second in early 1931, of tuberculosis while trying to recuperate in Geneva Switzerland. Harry gave me a deep appreciation for his profession and set a certain standard that not many can come close to. The Irish people should hang their heads in shame for not singing their sons praise to the world as in my opinion he belongs up there with Klimt, Mucha, Beardsley for international crittical acclaim. If you ever venture into this little corner of the world do yourselves a favour, visit the gallery and enter the realm of clarkes fantasia. You will not regret it.

Thursday, July 12, 2007


Two for the price of one Im giving you today guvnah.

Smoke & Mirrors

I have a long history with Neil Gaiman - he was my introduction to the graphic novel. Without coming on all geeky for those not au fait with his works, he penned stories for his Sandman series of Comics and Death Comics - essentially Sandman is exactly who he is - the bringer of dreams and the latter, Death, his younger sister. He was a breath of fresh air by ways of the horror genre that I was reading at the time and my interest in the graphic arts had me entranced with the embelishments on both covers and inside the pages.
It is all too easy to dismiss this guy as a 'comic writer' only knowing that small nugget of information but Neil Gaiman has been acclaimed by writers as diverse as Norman Mailer and Stephen King.. He is a wonderful story teller with an eye for the strange in our everyday lives. Neil always blended and blurred the fantasy and reality of the mundane in a beautifully seamless way. His book Smoke & Mirrors is a collection of stories that will dazzle the senses and haunt the imagination. Miraculous inventions and unforgettable characters inhabit these pages: an elderly widow who finds the Holy Grail in a second-hand store...a frightened little boy who bargains for his life with a troll living under a bridge by the railroad tracks...a stray cat who battles nightly against a recurring evil that threatens his unsusupecting adoptive family. A murder in Heaven.. In these stories, Gaiman displays the power, wit, insight and outrageous originality that has made him one of the most unique literary artists I have come across in the last 15 years.. I recommend it highly for any vacation, just to keep a chill in the blood!

Dancing with the Dark - Steven JonesThis is a book filled with true encounters of the paranormal kind. But the difference with this book is the experiences are those experienced by the most un-likely people, which you would expect to get frightened. People like the famous horror writer Stephen King whose novels have given many readers chills, the well known writer James Herbert and classic horror film actor Vincent Price to name but a few of the icons of the horror genre whose tales are retold in this fascinating novel of paranormal brushes with spectral visions, phantom footsteps, encounters with ouijia board, premonitions of disasters are just a few of the experiences that have changed the very lives of the people who make their living from the horror genre. It truly is a fascinating read when you 'hear' the voices of fear tell their own true accounts; its a bit of revenge for the reader in a way to be honest! I havent read this book for a few years but some of the stories did give me goosebumps (a very hard thing to do) The one that sticks out the most is Ramsey Campbell's "The Nearest to a Ghost." He goes to the cemetery to scatter his mother's ashes and feels a powerful sense of grief that isn't his own. The feeling vanishes after a moment, his own grief returning. Steven Jones I imagine had several good nights of exchanging stories and toasting absent friends with some of his contributors, what an enviable project to pursue!

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

General Tag

General Catz tagged me with 5 bands or musicians that I really like and to be honest I find these tasks very hard to complete mainly because I have such a broad spectrum of musical tastes I find it hard to nail down 5 bands. My choices I suppose here are the ones that stuck out for me at this point in time. If asked the same question tomorrow I could well have come up with Bowie, Zeppelin, Pantera, My Ruin, and the Sundays. So Just to keep her on her toes Im going to tag her back with the 5 most emotional songs she likes and why.
Im going to tag Puss, Pool and Flyin Fox with this..

Dead Can Dance
Lisa Gerard & Brendan Perry - This music just makes me feel so alive, with either of them vocalising separately or together. Both surge passion into the lyrics with their voices. Their music can be described as ‘world’ music I suppose. But to me its flavoured of sultry eastern nights, evocative, otherworldly, exquisite and lusty.

Cocteau Twins
Elizabeth Frazer’s voice is just liquid air. Most of their ‘lyrics’ are just another language that Liz just seems to know exclusively. But perhaps the most enrapturing and enchanting albums to own in your collection or to be introduced to their works are as follows Victoria Land (an album to listen to on summer evenings, cloud busting or just chilling out in the grass ; a musical labyrinth into a forest of images. Bluebell Knoll this is an excellent backdrop for Christmas , its hard to explain, ethereal vocals and sound just seem to give the ambience of clear starry night cosiness.
Heaven or Las Vegas, perfect album for driving at night- its calm without making you fall asleep at the wheel.

Nick Drake
A gentle musician and voice, guy died way too soon and was painfully shy as a person. I first discovered him when I was about 14. He was a bit of a hippy but not overt with it; to me he seemed to balance an appreciation of nature, angst, wonder and gentle humour - not an easy task but one he accomplished with such panache and ease. When I was 15 a letter I wrote weaved through a handful of his producers to his mother and we corresponded for a few years up until her death. In many ways I would not be the same person today if it were not for his music.

Tom Waits
If I ever got married Tom was going to be the entertainment on a piano. I love his rich intoxicated gravel tones and he’s just such a smooth bastard without realising it. Many a tear has been brought to my eye with his lyrics. He did a fabulous job on the soundtrack to Coppollas ’this ones from the heart’ with Crystal Gale. I have many, many favourites of his; Heart attack and Vine, Martha, Never need a wife, World died Screaming, Swordfish trombones I could go on... His voice and sound are unique and it makes me never want to visit New Orleans as I would be sorely disappointed to walk into a bar and not find him on a piano there.

Depeche Mode
Ok I know what you’re thinking - synth yes? 80s Yes? But I love these guys for their lyrics, alright they maybe poppy little beats sometimes but Martin Gore is an intimate lyricist with a penchant for S & M. To me these lyrics (not all of them mind) Get under my skin in an arresting and sensual way, Dave Gahans voice can be hypnotic and gets me into my vixen mode at the drop of a hat.They are indeed a guilty pleasure of mine but also a proud pleasure of mine also..

Monday, July 9, 2007

Looney Lyrics

In a blog about nowt *asterisk's latest post was his 666th and was discussing the connections of the Devils number, Satanisim and dark lyrics - which gave me food for thought (devils food if you will- such is diabolical word play). The first thing that came to my mind was Nick Caves Murder Ballads album, dark stories infused with music to an era belonging to Lizzie Borden and the backdrop of modern America in its infancy. Quite an album it is. However I simply love this track which is the narrative of a 15 year old girl who is of course a murderer but is well aware that she is 'psychotic' and is happy to be in such a disposition. Its upbeat tempo carries the craziness of Lorretta, our anti hero of the 'story'. Since it was never released (all this pun??!) as a single some people have put up their own vids on youtube so to give you an idea of the song Ive also put up the lyrics too just incase the video prooved too distracting to the story.

Again the memory was in overdrive with strange/ memorable / funny lyrics thinking about this subject, when a faint familiar ethereal voice lurked in the back of my mind, so I started to listen hard, the voice became stronger and clearer until I found myself singing the line 'shes got skin thats like prarie dog leather' - yes it was porky pig from the cartoon 'Drip along Daffy'. Two things , if I can, I will always look for a reason to geek out about warner brothers cartoons, and can sit happily all day watching these cartoons and feel like I havent wasted the day at all. Michael Maltese wrote some damned funny lyrics for the warner brother cartoons and this is one of his examples - a cowpunchers sweetheart?!!! As you can see Ive yeilded to temptation and posted up the cartoon itself. Nasty Canasta is one of my favorite charaters, amongst his string of crimes he is wanted for, aside for cattle rustling, is for square dancing in a round house. Ahh the rapier witt of those writers, cant get enough of them. Enjoy the show.

The Flower of Gower Gulch - Michael Maltese
She's the flower of Gower gulch
A cowpuncher's sweetheart true
And her looks don't amount to much
'Cause one of her eyes is blue
She's got skin just like prarie dog leather
She cooks nothing but chuckwagon stew
Her name is Minurva Ulch
She's the flower of Gower gulch

Nick Cave - The Curse Of Millhaven Lyrics

I live in a town called Millhaven
And it's small and it's mean and it's cold
But if you come around just as the sun goes down
You can watch the whole town turn to gold
It's around about then that I used to go a-roaming
Singing La la la la La la la lie
All God's children they all gotta die
My name is Loretta but I prefer Lottie
I'm closing in on my fifteenth year
And if you think you have seen a pair of eyes more green
Then you sure didn't see them around here
My hair is yellow and I'm always a-combing
La la la la La la la lie
Mama often told me we all got to die
You must have heard about The Curse Of Millhaven
How last Christmas Bill Blake's little boy didn't come home
They found him next week in One Mile Creek
His head bashed in and his pockets full of stones
Well, just imagine all the wailing and moaning
La la la la La la la lie
Even little Billy Blake's boy, he had to die
Then Professor O'Rye from Millhaven High
Found nailed to his door his prize-winning terrier
Then next day the old fool brought little Biko to school
And we all had to watch as he buried her
His eulogy to Biko had all the tears a-flowing
La la la la La la la lie
Even God's little creatures, they have to die
Our little town fell into a state of shock
A lot of people were saying things that made little sense
Then the next thing you know the head of Handyman Joe
Was found in the fountain of the Mayor's residence
Foul play can really get a small town going
La la la la La la la lie
Even God's children all have to die
Then, in a cruel twist of fate, old Mrs Colgate
Was stabbed but the job was not complete
The last thing she said before the cops pronounced her dead
Was, "My killer is Loretta and she lives across the street!"
Twenty cops burst through my door without even phoning
La la la la La la la lie
The young ones, the old ones, they all gotta die
Yes, it is I, Lottie. The Curse Of Millhaven
I've struck horror in the heart of this town
Like my eyes ain't green and my hair ain't yellow
It's more like the other way around
I gotta pretty little mouth underneath all the foaming
La la la la La la la lie
Sooner or later we all gotta die
Since I was no bigger than a weavil they've been saying I was evil
That if "bad" was a boot that I'd fit it
That I'm a wicked young lady, but I've been trying hard lately
O fuck it! I'm a monster! I admit it!
It makes me so mad my blood really starts a-going
La la la la La la la lie
Mama always told me that we all gotta die
Yeah, I drowned the Blakey kid, stabbed Mrs. Colgate, I admit
Did the handyman with his circular saw in his garden shed
But I never crucified little Biko, that was two junior high school psychos
Stinky Bohoon and his friend with the pumpkin-sized head
I'll sing to the lot, now you got me going
La la la la La la la lie
All God's children have all gotta die
There were all the others, all our sisters and brothers
You assumed were accidents, best forgotten
Recall the children who broke through the ice on Lake Tahoo?
Everyone assumed the "Warning" signs had followed them to the bottom
Well, they're underneath the house where I do quite a bit of stowing
La la la la La la la lie
Even twenty little children, they had to die
And the fire of '91 that razed the Bella Vista slum
There was the biggest shit-fight this country's ever seen
Insurance companies ruined, land lords getting sued
All cause of wee girl with a can of gasoline
Those flames really roared when the wind started blowing
La la la la La la la lie
Rich man, poor man, all got to die
Well I confessed to all these crimes and they put me on trial
I was laughing when they took me away
Off to the asylum in an old black Mariah
It ain't home, but you know, it's fucking better than jail
It ain't such bad old place to have a home in
La la la la La la la lie
All God's children they all gotta die
Now I got shrinks that will not rest with their endless Rorschach tests
I keep telling them they're out to get me
They ask me if I feel remorse and I answer, "Why of course!
There is so much more I could have done if they'd let me!"
So it's Rorschach and Prozac and everything is groovy
Singing La la la la La la la lie
All God's children they all have to die
La la la la La la la lie
I'm happy as a lark and everything is fine
Singing La la la la La la la lie
Yeah, everything is groovy and everything is fine
Singing La la la la La la la lie
All God's children they gotta die

Friday, July 6, 2007


Penguin brought out a series of little books in the early 90s; they were a set of 60 small books in celebration of Penguin's
60th anniversary. In Britain they were priced at 60p. They where about eight inches high and covered all manner of authors from William Blake , F Scott Fitzgerald, to Hemmingway and Pinter. I started to collect handfuls of them, reading them with gusto when journeying to and from the city where I worked. For 60p they where a steal and a great introduction to many different genres. They also introduced 60 for the american market also, so I tried to collect as many different titles as I could. One I particularly warmed to was a little novella titled ‘ His mouth will taste of wormwood and other stories’ by Poppy Z Brite. They where simply 4 little horror stories that where, for want of a better word ,’enchanting’ in a dark way. So I searched for more of her works and the first actual book I bought of hers was the collection entitled Swamp Foetus.(Ive recently learned that the title of the book was changed due to the fact the publishing house was getting so many complaints of the word foetus, they re-published the book under the new title of ‘wormwood‘) it had the four original stories that I had previously read in it . My favorite two though which stand out in my mind where ’his mouth will taste like wormwood, firstly because it had a vampire and voodoo theme to it and Poppy Z. Brite’s writing style was elegant , fluid ,grim and manages with a few words to conjure up decadence, decay and forbidden empty pleasures in a steamy New Orleans setting. She masters her style to write some truly horrific scenes with a few simple words especially with her descriptions of Howard and Louis’s grave robbing activities in Wormwood. The second tale that I loved was the Sixth Sentinal - basically about a stripper in a bar in New Orleans who is befriended by a Ghost that haunts the bar where she works, enamoured with her , he proceeds to try and push his unrequited love to the edge resulting in a great plot twist. All of the stories in this collection are spun with a dark thread and there should be no comparisons to Anne Rice.I remember hearing that Poppy Z Brite was going to be giving a Q & A at Trinity College here in Dublin, at the time I was living in Dublin but also doing a comic strip for a ‘Goth Zine‘ in London. Stuart, the editor (who is now an editor for a very popular vamp/goth mag called ’bite this’) squeeled with delight when I mentioned this to him and told me to get down there for an exclusive interview. The woman was pixie in size and features and resembled a 12 year old with her sparse make up and short tight hair. After the Q & A I did a short interview with her and she and another author travelling with her , Caitlin Kiernan asked me to bring them / direct them out of the massive grounds of the campus and back to her hotel which wasn’t too far away really. As we walked she asked about the history surrounding the college, irish landmarks and a few recommended places that I thought she may be interested in visiting. She was warm, open and generous as most writers are I suspect. And I left with an armful of signed copies of her books , photos and an exclusive interview. Not much more I could have asked for really.
Although Poppys finest hour is the vampire novel ‘lost souls’ (which incidently I would love to see on film). When she wrote ‘Exquisite corpse’ ( a story about a correspondance between a jeffrey dahmer character and a Denis Nielson character) I feel she began to loose her way or rather in hindsight I outgrew her. There is only so much bisexual dark love I can handle (And I mean that in a non homophobic way) up until then, her books captured that strange fixation of the late 80s and early 90s with vampires, ghosts and gothic horror, mixed with the emerging internet age. It was very exciting to read her and still is up to the point of ‘drawing blood’ novel. I know this does not seem like a good review to the lady and her works, but believe me when I say they are good they are or else the would never grace the FFF slot but there is a point to where my personal tastes stop and the masse does not. Wormwood is a refreshing and elegant piece of work without being pretentious or of the romantic dark love so many goth kids go for. For me she blossomed for about 3 books, Wormwood, Drawing blood, and Lost Souls. Before I started to write this I was fired up with great admiration for these but I found it hard to praise her when I feel her new direction although sometimes repetative with the gay slant , just nosedived in quality , plot and theme. I promise to do next friday justice..

Thursday, July 5, 2007

Pissed off a tinsey bit

Someone put a looping link in the comment box today and it pissed me off as it prooved really hard to delete - I could have used the waco kid to be quick on the delete comment forever button because it was that quick. Now I dont want to moderate comments as I believe in freedom of speech but dont fuck me about with your whore wares via my page. Im sure Im not alone but there are ways and means of tracking down you sneaky bastards. You have been warned.


When the world and all its scientists are watching your 'breakthrough' unveiling of clean energy with zero emissions and waste - the science of murphys law will kick in. Ive been following this story for a couple of days now and when I read this I nearly climbed the walls in empathetic embaressment for these dudes.. Please read on..

05.07.2007 - Last night at 11pm, a device by Irish technology company Steorn that claims to create energy out of thin air, failed to make its first public appearance, as promised, live on the internet.

As members of the public milled around outside the Kinetica museum, and many others logged on to the webcam last night, it was revealed that the hypothetical perpetual motion machine fell victim to the laws of physics and failed to continuously power the rotating outer wheel.

The intense spotlights surrounding the perspex case in which Orbo is enclosed have been cited as a possible reason for its malfunction, although engineers are still investigating.

“The display case itself is under a lot of lighting, it’s very hot. We think we’ve destroyed one of the bearings on the system, it’s not the technology itself,” said CEO of Steorn, Sean McCarthy, speaking to SiliconRepublic.

Steorn say that the intense heat should not affect future applications of the Orbo technology as this is just a prototype. The prototype was set up in the museum on Sunday and as of Tuesday night, McCarthy said it was functioning perfectly until yesterday when it froze suddenly.

The Orbo free energy device is no longer on display in the Kinetica Museum in London. Engineers are testing it off site, said McCarthy , who is currently looking at the machine with his engineering team, trying to assess specifically what happened, and if it is permanently damaged.

The four webcams focused on Orbo will still go live later this afternoon, to ensure complete transparency to the public, said McCarthy, but Orbo will not be present.

“We did break the barings when we were installing it, but it looks to us almost certainly that it is probably the intense heat from spotlights that were only installed yesterday afternoon,” said McCarthy.

To remedy this, McCarthy said: “We could put fans all around but then we’re pushing air across the wheel,” which would attract the same amount of suspicion as hidden batteries.

McCarthy is hopeful that the Orbo will be functioning for public viewing soon.

“I’m standing beside a couple of engineers who are staring into it right now,” he said.

Wednesday, July 4, 2007

4th of July

To all the good people on the otherside of the pond; if you're having a crappy 4th of july either one of these are bound to make you smile. Happy 4th of July to all who read/comment and lurk here!

Monday, July 2, 2007

The Gene Genie

Last night when watching Channel 4 I chanced upon one of those 10 second quotes between programming that celebrities and actors make commenting about the art of film, movies and life in general. The pearl of wisdom came from Gene Wilder and I couldnt hear what he had said as I was deaf with shock to see how much this great man had aged, sunken in frame and generally looked a shadow of his former self and I learned he was hospitalized with non-Hodgkin's lymphoma in 1999 and made a full recovery in 2000. It sure has taken its toil on him along with old age.
It takes a certain type of nerd to appreciate an actor like Gene Wilder I think. Although he has a chequered resume for turkeys as far as movies are concerned, he no doubt won the glittering prizes of his career with Mel Brooks and Richard Pryor. He had been reletively quite on the movie front for the past 15 years preferring writing and directional roles rather than acting. When Surfing the web just to see what he had been up to in this 15 year wilderness I came across an account of how he and Mel Brooks met. It was 1963. Anne Bancroft was doing “Mother Courage and Her Children” on Broadway. She asked her friend Gene Wilder, “Do you want to meet my boy friend?”

Why not?

Gene extended his hand to Mel Brooks and complimented him: “You look great in that P-jacket.”

Mel, ever the comic, shot back: “They used to call it a urine jacket, but it didn’t sell.”

Such was the start of a famous collaboration that included Gene starring with Zero Mostel in Mel’s 1968 film, “The Producers.” Apart from his critical acclaim playing Willie Wonka , Victor Fronkonschtein, and The Waco Kid. He also made a movie here in Dublin with Margot Kidder (Lois Lane) a year before Willie Wonka, It was called 'Quackster Fortune has a cousin in the Bronx' (I would have loved to hear the movie pitch for that title). I had seen this about 10 years ago and was curious because A it was shot in Dublin and B because I trusted his choice of roles as an actor. In it Gene plays a shit shoveller, yes you read that correct. His character goes around following work horses around the city and sells their manure to horticultralists. An american student nearly mows him down in her car(Kidder) and thus the love story begins. Gene plays the role of Quackster, (who character is of limited intelligence) quite well save for his 'oirish' accent.

I guess though for many (myself included),feel that Wilder always worked his best in partnerships. In the late 1970s and 1980s he appeared in a number of movies with Richard Pryor, making them the most prolific inter-racial comedy double act in movies during the period. Who could forget Silver Streak, Sir Crazy, Hear no Evil Speak no Evil?
Anyway just to remind you of some of his golden moments on screen here are a series of quotes starting with the unforgettable Young Frankenstein. Sorry thats Fronkonschtein..

Dr. Friedrich von Frankenstein: That music...
Frau Blucher: Yes! It's in your blood - it's in the blood of ALL Frankensteins! It reaches the soul when words are useless. Your grandfather used to play it to the creature HE vas making!
Dr. Friedrich von Frankenstein: Then it was you all the time!
Frau Blucher: Yes!
Dr. Friedrich von Frankenstein: You played that music in the middle of the night...
Frau Blucher: Yes!
Dr. Friedrich von Frankenstein: ...to get us to the laboratory!
Frau Blucher: Yes!
Dr. Friedrich von Frankenstein: That was YOUR cigar smoldering in the ashtray!
Frau Blucher: Yes!
Dr. Friedrich von Frankenstein: And it was you... who left my grandfather's book out for me to find!
Frau Blucher: Yes!
Dr. Friedrich von Frankenstein: So that I would...
Frau Blucher: Yes!
Dr. Friedrich von Frankenstein: Then you and Victor were...
Frau Blucher: YES! YES! Say it! He vas my... BOYFRIEND!

[Frankenstein, Igor and Inga in front of HUGE castle doors.]
Dr. Friedrich von Frankenstein: What knockers!
Inga: Oh, thank you doctor!

Dr. Friedrich von Frankenstein: Igor, would you mind telling me whose brain I did put in?
Igor: And you won't be angry?
Dr. Friedrich von Frankenstein: I will NOT be angry.
Igor: Abby someone.
Dr. Friedrich von Frankenstein: Abby someone. Abby who?
Igor: Abby Normal.
Dr. Friedrich von Frankenstein: Abby Normal?
Igor: I'm almost sure that was the name.
Dr. Friedrich von Frankenstein: Do you mean to tell me that I put an abnormal brain into an, 8 foot tall, 300 pound, GORILLA?!!!

[Dr. Frankenstein leans in for a kiss.]
Elizabeth: Taffeta, darling.
Dr. Friedrich von Frankenstein: Taffeta, dear.
Elizabeth: [pulling away] No, the dress is taffeta. It wrinkles so easily.

[Froederick and Igor are exhuming a dead criminal.]
Dr. Friedrich von Frankenstein: What a filthy job.
Igor: Could be worse.
Dr. Friedrich von Frankenstein: How?
Igor: Could be raining.
[It starts to pour.]

Dr. Friedrich von Frankenstein: For what we are about to see next, we must enter quietly into the realm of genius!

Igor: Dr. Frankenstein...
Dr. Friedrich von Frankenstein: "Fronkensteen."
Igor: You're putting me on.
Dr. Friedrich von Frankenstein: No, it's pronounced "Fronkensteen."
Igor: Do you also say "Froaderick"?
Dr. Friedrich von Frankenstein: No... "Frederick."
Igor: Well, why isn't it "Froaderick Fronkensteen"?
Dr. Friedrich von Frankenstein: It isn't; it's "Frederick Fronensteen."
Igor: I see.
Dr. Friedrich von Frankenstein: You must be Igor.
[He pronounces it ee-gor.]
Igor: No, it's pronounced "eye-gor."
Dr. Friedrich von Frankenstein: But they told me it was "ee-gor."
Igor: Well, they were wrong, weren't they?

Inga: Werewolf!
Dr. Friedrich von Frankenstein: Werewolf?
Igor: There Wolf; There Castle!

Dr. Friedrich von Frankenstein: Damn your eyes!
Igor: [to camera] Too late.

Dr. Friedrich von Frankenstein: For the experiment to be a success, all of the body parts must be enlarged.
Inga: His veins, his feet, his hands, his organs vould all have to be increased in size.
Dr. Friedrich von Frankenstein: Exactly.
Inga: He vould have an enormous Shwanstooker!
Dr. Friedrich von Frankenstein: That goes without saying.
Inga: Voof!
Igor: He's going to be very popular.

[After sex with The Monster]
Elizabeth: Oh! Where you going? ...Oh, you men are all alike! Seven or eight quick ones and then you're out with the boys to boast and brag! YOU BETTER KEEP YOUR MOUTH SHUT! Oh... I think I love him!

[Upon seeing the monster's manhood]
Elizabeth: Oh my God! Woof!

Blazing Saddles
[describing how everyone wanted to duel him when he was The Waco Kid]
Jim: Then one day I hear "Reach for it, mister." I spun around, and there I was standing face to face with a six year old kid. Well, I just laid down my guns and walked away. Little bastard shot me in the ass. So I limped to the nearest saloon, crawled inside a whiskey bottle, and I've been there ever since

Stir Crazy
Skip Donahue: This filthy, roach-ridden reality is inspiring... what did that second policeman say to you when he grabbed you by the throat?
Harry Monroe: Man, I don't fucking believe you!
Skip Donahue: "Man, I don't fucking believe you!" Fabulous!
Harry Monroe: You don't get it do you, Skip. You think this is The Count Of Monte Cristo or something. We're in deep trouble. This is the real deal. We're in deep shit.

So I also found out that on On March 1, 2005 (I know, its a little old news)Gene Wilder released his highly-personal memoir Kiss Me Like A Stranger, an account of his life covering everything from his childhood, when his mother died of heart disease, up through his late wife's death. He has been praised for the openness and honesty of his writing, setting it apart from other Hollywood memoirs. So I know what book I will be reading next. Lately he had been furiously attacking hollywood for making so many sequels and remakes and 'following the money' as he calls it. Its something I can very much sympathise with in his view.Bastardisations of world cinema for the mass, sequel upon sequel, beat that movie horse to death mindset of producers etc So the next time I go to buy a dvd just for the sake of seeing it , I think I will keep my hand in my pocket and go home and stick on one of his classic movies because as he says 'they simply dont make them like the used to'. He is of course right. Why? Because he's the candyman.