Sunday, June 30, 2002

When Big Bro 2 ended, I quickly realised that E4 is pretty crap - after all, unless you care about ER, Friends re-runs or Hollyoaks, it's just another blip on the digital front. I spent all year thinking about getting rid of it.

Then Big Bro 3 started, and with that comes 'live' coverage and Big Bro's Little Bro. Then you've got repeats of Six Feet Under at a more reasonable hour of 9 PM on Wednesdays, as opposed to the 11:05 PM on terrestrial C4 on Mondays. (Some say this is a strategic move on C4's part, as E4 is a real financial drain...)

Now, an even better reason to keep E4 - the new series of The Secret Life of Us starts on July 16th, before any terrestrial plebs get to see it.

Friday, June 28, 2002

Sorry sorry sorry, been caught up with the whole volunteer and finding a job thing. Right now I have gorgeous pizza dough rising in the kitchen and I've made espresso chocolate cupcakes. I am such a Nigella whore.

Anyhow, should you like the whole northern soul or rocksteady sound, and should you happen be in Manchester tomorrow evening, one of the guys from Beatin' Rhythm is running a free night at the Dance House Cafe Bar on Oxford Road tomorrow evening. 8 pm - 2 am and don't forget the talc for groovy dance moves!

Tuesday, June 25, 2002

Huzzah! Today my Commonwealth Games tickets arrived. I'm going to see the synchronized swimming duet final on 27th July. Great seats too, so I can cheer Canada on to their inevitable gold. A few of you might know that I was an amateur duet champion back in high school. Most of you probably didn't.

But before you laugh (if you were planning on doing so) let me ask you this. Name another sport lets you choreograph routines to your favourite songs (back then, it was S'Express!), wear tons of makeup in the water and glue your hair up using gelatine. Plus everyone knows that it keeps you sleek and trim. I should probably get back into it actually...

Tomorrow I'm spending the morning at an induction session at the Citizens Advice Bureau, stage one of becoming a volunteer. Part 2 of the plan is a bit shakier. Thanks to a recommendation and my fabulous CV (*cough*), I've been picked up with an agency without having to do those ridiculous typing tests and all that. Unfortunately they're also swamped with students looking for summer work. Never thought I'd have to compete with students - I hope my years of admin slavery count for something! Sigh. I'll just have to keep cool and not let it freak me out.

Hey, if you feel like cheering me up, why not buy me some Juicy Couture for me to lounge around in? I know it's soooo J-Lo and all that, but I saw Kirsten Dunst wearing some the other day and it looked cute and comfy!

Monday, June 24, 2002

It's not often I get a crush on celebs of any kind. My preferred men in the public eye are usually dead or well past their prime (though that wouldn't necessarily stop me!)

But against my better judgment, I think that Peter Krause (Nate from Six Feet Under) is absolutely gorgeous. Despite his mainstream CV and facial hair!

This just sealed it for me (taken from an HBO interview):

And I like people who prepare food. I like cooks. I think people who do great things with food, man, I think they're fuckin' brilliant.

And here he is in the kitchen:



Sigh.

(p.s. get your sarky episode review fix at television without pity, formerly known as mighty big tv...)

Sunday, June 23, 2002

I would only suggest that you visit the Printworks if you want either a) Nando's Chicken or b) to see a movie at The Filmworks. Otherwise steer well clear of the cavernous bars that are usually packed with Club 18-30 types tottering/retching/passed out on the cobbles after too many bacardi breezers.

So we've just been to see Spider-Man - which was actually quite charming and exhilirating. Considering I usually steer well clear of a) hollywood and b) adventure movies, that's a lot coming from me. Hey, I even cried when Aunt May got harrassed by the Green Goblin!

Anyhow. We come out and have the usual banter.

Me: I liked that they didn't go for a typical ending.

R CJ: Yeah, that left it wide open for a sequel.

Me: Yeah, doesn't the Goblin's son become Lex Luther so he can take his revenge?

Everyone stares at me.

Me: What???

R CJ: Uh, that's Superman.

Thursday, June 20, 2002

It was a friend's birthday today, so I made her this card using old sheet music:



And I'm very sorry I didn't make to the dinner party.

A very slight couple of rays of sunshine on the job front - one is a charity, one is a record distribution company that's going to circulate my CV. Hopefully something will come of all my slogging! It's actually rather gorgeous in Manchester at the moment though, so in all honesty this extra time off has helped me to relax completely. I know I thought I was relaxed *last* week, but what did I know?

Tuesday, June 18, 2002

A homage to Nathan Barley. Trying a bit too hard methinks, but it might make you chuckle a bit.

Saturday, June 15, 2002

Over the past few days...

Thursday

Big Brother's Little Brother (E4). Rusty Lee is on with Alison, showing us all that it's possible to make nice meals with the 'poor house' rations. Duh. This does, however, provide a few realisations.

1. There is someone more annoying than Alison. I hate it when people constantly guffaw with belly laughter mid-sentence.

2. I now know what the woman, who gave me a rich slice of hell for half an hour on the phone once because my former boss hadn't replied to her work-seeking letter, looks like. Echoes of "you have no manners!" and "I am a celebrity!" ring around my head like yesterday. (p.s. I wanted to put a link so people who don't know her could have a look, but nothing came up. Seriously!)

Friday

The Ginnels antique gallery on Lloyd Street, one of my favourite haunts, is closing forever on 21st June - but Friday is the last day to snap up a meal in their cafe. I meet up with my girls and glumly watch people trickle out saying their last goodbyes to the owners. Where else can you eat decadent comfort food while sat at a salvaged Singer sewing table, surrounded by dusty collectables? In an area that's especially choked with chain pubs, it's a real loss.

Saturday

"Let's finish off the tequila then..." seemed like a good idea last night. Still, this hasn't stopped me from being a domestic goddess today. I baked bread *and* hung up my fab 50s Swedish soup advert (which had just come back from the framers and, frankly, looks totally ace) *and* we hung up my new curtains which I made from my eBay 50s fabric score. I am so excellent.

Thursday, June 13, 2002

Aaaargh! Remember - if you want to do something properly, do it yourself. Do not, as I did, choose "automatic install" when updating your comments system, as it deletes your entire template. Aaaargh! I've made a quick 'n nasty repair, so things are still a bit wonky - but hey, it was an excuse to do a bit of updating I guess. Sigh.

Wednesday, June 12, 2002

Once again, a blogging break. I've been thinking about this, and came up with a few reasons.

1. No work, not much to bitch about.

2. Three years of working in a full-on industry has finally caught up with me, especially when the holidays I did take usually involved long haul flights, jet lag and busy busy busy schedules!

3. Crap as it sounds, I'm finally getting a bit of time to spend just with myself and re-learning how to do nothing at all for a few minutes.

I'm really savouring it, actually - it's bizarre how things like wandering out to the shops at 11 AM when no one's about is a total guilty pleasure. Or actually having the time to dust your stereo. Time to make a second latte. Putting on records you want to hear for hours on end and being able to dance around your living room. Walking around the garden with your cats.

It's got a limited shelf life though - after this week, I'm worried that relaxing will turn into couch potato, and I don't want that to happen. But on the other hand, I really want the stress to finally subside before I head back into working, or else I'm worried that I'll develop a permanent chip on my shoulder. A few things still niggle re: the old job. Like my boss pestering me to "come in for lunch" to show him where all my files are - because he wouldn't find the time to do it before I left. Not my problem, but am I being a total bee-yotch for avoiding his calls? I just don't want to get dragged into a long conversation and just thinking about it makes the old stress rear its ugly head.

I got a weird phone call on Tuesday too. Ages ago, I had sent my CV to a fairly prominent music PR company. I took a bit of a risk with my covering letter, letting my personality ('eh?' I hear you say...) show instead of your standard rubbish. I never heard anything back - until Tuesday. The guy I'd sent my letter to has left the company and is looking to set up a new company to get back to smaller bands rather than top 40 acts. He said he'd meant to call me for ages and that he really liked my covering letter. He sounded friendly enough despite his "I've been in the business for 20 years" schtick, but I still had my doubts. We left it that he'd call back the next day to set up a chat over coffee. I promptly did the rounds afterwards, trying to get the scoop on his reputation. The general consensus was a) possibly flaky b) nice enough guy but slightly sleazy c) keeps changing his mind as to what he wants to do but d) probably wouldn't hurt to meet up and see what he has to say.

Well. Has he phoned back? Nope. Can't say I'm surprised, but in case he does call again out of the blue...back to call screening. As one friend said, I can do better.

Back to the original plan, which roughly involves having some sort of work to bring some money in, but enough time to do a) music b) volunteer work and c) various other projects. Ha!

By the way, the new (well, new since January) Notwist album is really, really beautiful. Kind of a cross between Belle & Sebastian (vocally) and Mouse on Mars (bleeps) but much more original than that would suggest. I must be really out of it - they've been around for ages as well!

Wednesday, June 05, 2002

My latest eBay baby:


Isn't she fabulous? Don't be put off that it's Anita Harris - even the cheesiest of entertainers can have one great song in their closet. This one is hers. It's already hanging in the girl group sheet music gallery downstairs!

Crikey, it's been nearly a week since I posted - sorry, but what with leaving my job and going away to Devon, y'know...

I've been thinking that it's good I won't be talking about work anymore. After reading about Dooce and seeing the consequences of continuous slagging off sessions, tongue in cheek or not - (she was sacked), it makes you think twice - even if she definitely went further than I've ever seen anyone do, or would do myself.

It's still not sinking in that I don't have to go in to the office. The moronic neural waves at the back of my mind just won't buy it. They wake me up at 7:15 AM and tell me to hurry up. But the only place I have to hurry to today is the post office, where an eBay score is waiting for me. Huzzah!

So what's my plan, you ask? Nothing's definite yet - this week, I really just need the time to restore my sanity, which means going all Martha Stewart on you and making curtains, etc.

However, if you're really interested, the idea is to work part-time and volunteer part-time, until it leads to something more permanent in the voluntary sector. Yes, no more telly. EVER AGAIN!

Oh - the wedding we went to in Devon was ace, even though I only saw a tiny bit of the county. But if it took you 9 hours in total to do a journey that should take 4 or 5 hours max because of Jubilee traffic, you'd stick to local sightseeing too. We went to the most fantastic place - the Donkey Sanctuary. They claim it's therapeutic to stroke donkeys, and I can't say they're wrong. Being the huge softie that I am, some of the sad stories about how a donkey came to the sanctuary had me in tears. Like the one about the 80 year old farmer who was just too old to look after one donkey anymore, but couldn't bear to part with him when they came to collect him - he sat in the back of the truck for nearly an hour with the donkey's head in his lap. Awwww.