Crawling through technology, life and love
Pool Paradise - GC on Wii
Podcasts - Chris Moyles, Mark Kermode and Stephen Fry
Bits and Bobs:
Gerry's Lyrics Pop Quiz
Sites I like:
Top 40 Singles
Some blogs I enjoy:
Books recently read:
Time Out Guide to Havana (and Cuba)
And The Hippos Were Boiled In Their Tanks - William S Burroughs and Jack Kerouac
At My Mother's Knee ... and Other Low Joints: The Autobiography - Paul O'Grady
Star Maker - Olaf Stapledon
My Booky Wook - Russell Brand
When You Are Engulfed in Flames - David Sedaris
Then We Come To The End - Joshua Ferris
A Spot of Bother - Mark Haddon
The End of Mr. Y - Scarlett Thomas
I Never Knew That About London - Christopher Winn
The Arsenal Miscellany - Adam Gold
Young Hearts Run Free: The Real Story of the 1970s - Dave Haslam
Magical Thinking - Augusten Burroughs
Veronika Decides To Die - Paulo Coelho
Time Out Guide - Amsterdam
Lillian's Story - Kate Grenville
The God Delusion - Richard Dawkins
Schott's Original Miscellany - Ben Schott
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows - J K Rowling
A Gay History Of Britain - Matt Cook
Time Out Guide to Madrid
Time Out Guide to New York
Kingdom Come - J. G. Ballard
The Hours - Michael Cunningham
Mutants - Aramand Marie Leroi
A Young Man's Passage - Julian Clary
Growing Pains - Billie Piper
The Bell Jar - Sylvia Plath
Wild Swans - Jung Chang
Highbury: The Story of Arsenal N.5 - Jon Spurling
Red Carpets and Other Banana Skins - Rupert Everett
Affinity - Sarah Waters
Lighthousekeeping - Jeanette Winterson
Tipping The Velvet - Sarah Waters
The Kite Runner - Khaled Hosseini
Of Human Bondage - W Somerset Maugham
Rebecca - Daphne Du Maurier
Lucky Man - Michael J Fox
Labyrinth - Kate Mosse
Fingersmith - Sarah Waters
The Night Watch - Sarah Waters
The Pedant's Revolt - Andrea Barham
The Republic Of Trees - Sam Taylor
Written On tbe Body - Jeanette Winterson
Untold Stories - Alan Bennett
The Plot Against America - Philip Roth
Read All About It - Max Clifford
The Folding Star - Alan Hollinghurst
Thursbitch - Alan Garner
Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim - David Sedaris
Staying Alive - Matt Beaumont
The Bookseller Of Kabul - Asne Seierstad
Harry Potter and The Half-Blood Prince - J K Rowling
A Short History Of Nearly Everything - Bill Bryson
Count Karlstein - Philip Pullman
The Shadow Of The Wind - Carlos Ruiz Zafon
The Handmaid's Tale - Margaret Atwood
The Spell - Alan Hollinghurst
The Double Life Of Daniel Glick - Maurice Caldera
The Smoking Diaries - Simon Gray
Straight- Boy George
Digital Fortress - Dan Brown
Deception Point - Dan Brown
The Ladies No. 1 Detective Agency - Alexander McCall Smith
Angels and Demons - Dan Brown
Sydney - Time Out Guide
Oryx and Crake - Margaret Atwood
Eleanor Rigby - Douglas Coupland
The Scarecrow and His Servant - Philip Pullman
Tha Da Vinci Code - Dan Brown
The Perks Of Being A Wallflower - Stephen Chbosky
Planet Simpson - Chris Turner
The Line Of Beauty - Alan Hollinghurst
Barcelona - Time Out Guide
The Closed Circle - Jonathan Coe
The Clerkenwell Tales - Peter Ackroyd
Copenhagen - TimeOut Guide
The Butterfly Tattoo - Philip Pullman
The Broken Bridge - Philip Pullman
In Search of the Pleasure Palace - Marc Almond
Brick Lane - Monica Ali
Vernon God Little - DBC Pierre
Last Exit To Brooklyn - Hubert Selby Jr
You Shall Know Our Velocity - Dave Eggers
Touching The Void - Joe Simpson
Life Of Pi - Yann Martel
Istanbul - Time Out Guide
Millennium People - J G Ballard
The Duchess Who Wouldn't Sit Down - Jesse Browner
Hey Nostradamus! - Douglas Coupland
Eats, Shoots and Leaves - Lynne Truss
The Wind-up Bird Chronicle - Haruki Murakami
Our Man In Havana - Graham Greene
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time - Mark Haddon
Lyra's Oxford - Philip Pullman
Doran - Will Self
Lovely Bones - Alice Sebold
Middlesex - Jeffrey Eugenides
the book, the film, the t-shirt - matt beaumont
High Society - Ben Elton
Man And Wife - Tony Parsons
I Was A Rat - Philip Pullman
Harry Potter: The Order of the Phoenix - J R Rowling
Great Apes - Will Self
Barrel Fever - David Sedaris
Round Ireland With A Fridge - Tony Hawkes
Close Range - Annie Proux
The Third Way - Anthony Giddens
dot.con - John Cassidy
The Salmon of Doubt - Douglas Adams
One Hit Wonderland - Tony Hawkes
The Thief Lord - Cornelia Funke
The Corrections - Jonathan Franzen
The Cloud Sketcher - Richard Rayner
Keane: the Autobiography - Roy Keane
A Wasteland of Strangers - Bill Pronzini
The English - Jeremy Paxman
How to Lose Friends and Alienate People - Toby Young
Dead Famous - Ben Elton
The Amber Spyglass - Phillip Pullman (again)
The Subtle Knife - Phillip Pullman (again)
Northern Lights - Phillip Pullman (again)
The Bear and The Dragon - Tom Clancy
101 Reykjavik - Hallgrimur Helgason
Forward The Foundation - Isaac Asimov
Carter Beats The Devil - Glen David Gold
The Tin Princess - Philip Pullman
Atonement - Ian McEwan
The Tiger In The Well - Philip Pullman
The Rotters Club - Jonathan Coe
Generation X - Douglas Copeland
Perfume - Patrick Suskind
All Families Are Psychotic - Douglas Coupland
The Shadow In The North - Phillip Pullman
No Logon - Naomi Klein
The Dirt - Motley Crue
Miss Wyoming - Douglas Coupland
The Amber Spyglass - Phillip Pullman
The Subtle Knife - Phillip Pullman
Northern Lights - Phillip Pullman
The Ruby in the Smoke - Phillip Pullman
The Sandman - Miles Gibson
Blood and Gold: The Vampire Marius - Anne Rice
The Actrocity Exhibition - J G Ballard
Shameless - Paul Burston
Sing Out! - Boze Hadleigh
Brilliant Orange - David Winner
New Boy - William Sutcliffe
London - Peter Ackroyd
Wonder Boys - Michael Chabon
One For My Baby - Tony Parsons
How To Be Good - Nick Hornby
White Teeth - Zadie Smith
Lust - Geoff Ryman
Tulip Fever - Deborah Moggach
Dead Souls - Ian Rankin
The House Of Sleep - Jonathan Coe
A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius - Dave Eggers
What a carve up! - Jonathan Coe
The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay - Michael Chabon
The Grapes Of Wrath - John Steinbeck
Heartwood - James Lee Burke
Cryptonomicon - Neal Stephenson
Man and Boy - Tony Parsons
The Map Of Love - Ahdaf Soueif
e - Matt Beaumont
The e Before Christmas - Matt Beaumont
Friday, March 31, 2006
Notes From Oz #6...
Gavin / Bundeena / beach / Russ - (four words but packed in a lot!)
Wednesday, March 29, 2006
Notes From Oz #5...
Sydney Aquarium / seal club sandwich / saw guy showing off to his girlfriend by throwing coins at a sleeping crocodile in an enclosure. wanker / complained to attendant and got him thrown out / seal sanctuary / shark tube / found Nemo (& Dory) / sneaked out in case coin guy was hanging around / walked to Circular Quay / ferry to Parramatta to see les girls / ferry cancelled so went to Rydalmere / Katherine met me / both really well / new jobs / Emma's pregnant! / due Nov 9th / they were going to ask me but too far away! now if I moved to Oz... Bless! / beers / Lebanese in town / The Castle (hilarious)
Parramatta lake with Katherine / JB Hi-Fi / Westfield / fuck-up with trains (my fault) / Auburn / rain / Ashfield / Newtown / called Russ / Gavin / 'smart' lamb / Topping & Butch
Tuesday, March 28, 2006
Notes From Oz #4...
Up at the crack / prepping for the house-warming / Sue, Paul, Patrick / cocktails @ noon / doormat / Robbie, R&B, Priscilla / Colourbox - Inside Informer, Just Give 'em Whiskey / Keith, Luke, Craig, Dave, Robert, Adrian, Rich, Steve, Tim, Kate.... etc.! / Toohey's 25cl bottles are the best / late night / volume is an issue / diazepan / couch
Up at 4am / on motorbike with Craig / sack of potatoes / biker chick / Parramatta Park / Blue Mountains / Springwood / Faulconbridge / Hazelbrook / Lawson / chain / Wentworth Falls / 600m down a 1-in-1 climb / semi-naked swimming under waterfall / seminal moment / 600m up a 1-in-1 climb / Leura / chocolate fountain / woman from Prisoner Cell Block H gave us her desert / Katoomba / checked in to fantastic 1882 The Carrington Hotel / Goverp Leap / 40 mins 800m down a 1-in-1 climb / scary, slippery, dark rain forest / fairy grotto at bottom / Bridal Veil falls / life-changing experience / 800m up a 1-in-1 climb / 3 Sisters / shower / played pool in heavy metal bar / 6 scooners later / "have you got any Kylie?" / swift exit! / pizza
Breakfast in grand dining room / Noel Coward / 3 Sisters walk down this time / mist / bought lamp / Norman Lindsay museum / erection over scones & cheesecake / fruity 'channel two' gal / fantastic ride down to Richmond / Windsor / wheelie over Sydney Harbour bridge / back to Lennox Street / walking like John Wayne / sore inner thighs / beers helped / Adrian at Bondi Junction / bus ride to cemetery
Blimey! I've only been here a week but it seems a lifetime.
Friday, March 24, 2006
Notes From Oz #3...
Off to have breakfast and oggle at tattooed waiter at Vangacafe / shopping on Broadway (combat shorts, 5 DVDs, PS2 game for Dave, more underwear!) / got chatted up by the guy in HMV (think he was a bit taken aback when I laughed at his name: Bruce!) / Sydney public transport is a delight / had a visitor: the man with two names (gmaavrikn) / mildy stalkerish / to The Columbian Hotel on back of Craig's motorbike (very An Officer and a Gentleman) / beers with Rich / no dinner (oops!) / more beers at Mannacle / a new show but just as camp as ever / bit of a blur towards the end (someone did bite my lip though and i had a nose-bleed and some bruises this morning - draw your own conclusions!)
Slept until 3pm (oops!) / during the Commonwealth Games in Melbourne Channel 8 here are showing every single Simpsons episode (all 350?) so been glued to that / food shopping in a enormous supermarket / kebabs / Underworld / early night (big day tomorrow)
Wednesday, March 22, 2006
Notes From Oz #2...
Tue 21st (continued)
Didn't last out too long / awoke late / Newtown Hotel / thai on roof garden Zanzibar / Robots / 5mg diazepam / awake at 3am
Diner / St Peters / Sydenham / Bonds retail outlet / sunny / Newtown Hotel / Thai / Galaga / Galaga arrangement / 10mg diazepam / slept through
Monday, March 20, 2006
Notes From Oz #1...
"There appears to be a problem with you booking, sir" / Forgot to get Oz visa! Oops! / 25 quid (kerching!) / 90 min queue for customs @ Heathrow / full body scan (a la that Schwarzenegger/Mars film) / flight changed gate twice / plane empty / impossibly perky air stewardess (asked her for baseball bat but don't think she realised I wanted to hit her with it) / very smooth flight though so soon warmed to Miss Perky / my new best friend gave me two meals & 3 bottles of wine. Bless / films Aeon Flux (looks good but crap) & Goblet of Fire (again) / lay across 3 seats & slept like baby
Arrived for refueling in Singapore early / said goodbye to Miss Perky / I stayed on plane (don't think me & my illegal chewing gum were welcome in S/Pore airport!) / just me onboard with air steward so he brought me coffee & a kit-kat. Bless / bumpy flight / screaming kid / Kiss Kiss Bang Bang
Landed on time / raining / Dave & Craig waiting at arrivals. Bless! / warm but raining / very chilled out / quaffing coffee to stay awake
Friday, March 17, 2006
Bound For Botany Bay...
So sure enough Overyourhead is off on holiday this weekend. What? Yet again? I hear you cry! This time I'm off to Sydney, Australia to stay with my two super-sexy friends Dave and Craig for three weeks. I've got few plans (scary!) and going to take it all in my stride (who's kidnapped the old Jonce and replaced him with this laid-back replicant?). I've got books to read, beer to quaff and warm weather to bask in.
I'm traveling by myself this time; partly to rebuild some of confidence that was given a good kicking this time last year as we (long time since I used *that* word!) were in the last throes of our LTR, partly because I have no-one to travel with, and partly just to please myself. Watch word this trip: self-affirment.
And it's no bad thing to put a bit of distance between myself and London for a while. It helps to get all sorts of things into perspective when you're away.
So I'll be back in time for Easter. The anniversary of our break-up would have passed. And I'll hopefully be a happier Easter bunny for it. Advance Australia Fair.
Thursday, March 16, 2006
What A Load Of Wankers...
The lubes has been squeezed. The knuckles shuffled. The results are in. And it looks like straight men last longer than gay men. Left-handers cum quicker than right handers. And 10.5% of straight men wank with a mate.
Adult shopping site LoveHoney.co.uk "...wanted to find out the average number of strokes it takes a guy to ejaculate when he masturbates. The Shootout Survey was a rigorous scientific study that involved more than 1,000 participants."
Check out the full The LoveHoney Shootout Survey here.
And in case you couldn't guess, the average strokes to cum? 54.
Within a Week We Killed My Parents and Hit the Road...
We saw this on a record shop shutter in Valencia. Random!
Paddy's Quiz Night Answers
05. Great Britain
11. C - 100 times
13. Sweets/chocolate, chips, crisps, biscuits, cake
14. Shorts, sunglasses, swimwear, t-shirt, hat
15. Mouth, puddle/hole, shoe, dog muck, sock
16. Horses, dogs, lotto, cards, football
17. Maggie Smith
20. B - colours
21. Cash dispenser (ATM)
22. Brandy, Mailbu and Whiskey
23. 10ft (8 ft to 12ft feet acceptable)
24. Horrendous, stupendous or hazardous
25. Richard Branson
26. Michael Hestletine
27. Elizabeth Taylor
29. Samuel Pepys
30. John Thaw and Dennis Waterman
31. A - 1961
32. Henri Paul
33. Sean Penn
34. Little toe
36. B - 8ft
Wednesday, March 15, 2006
Fooking The Bill...
Love this story: "I love the UK police soap The Bill: but when they introduced a new WPC, Honey Harmon, I was so disgusted with her lack of acting ability that I emailed the producers to ask who she had shagged to get the role. No response. Then about a couple of months later there was a panning shot across the office taking in the white boards in the background: There was my name in big black letters with a ring around it in for a child sexual assault case! The bastards!"
Paddy's Quiz Night...
The lovely Richard and I finally met for a drink last night. We'd been emailing each other for some time and last night was the night to take the plunge. We found ourselves in The Green and it being a Tuesday it was Paddy's Quiz Night. Later on Kevin turned up too. Always nice to see him of course.
We couldn't help but join in the quiz. Below are the questions as far as I can remember them and aided a little by my scrawl down the answer paper margin. See how well you do (without referring to Google!). We got 25. The winners got 29.
01. What is the UK's largest prison?
02. Whose country has the lotus flower as it's symbol?
03. Which US mountain has all those US presidents carved into the face?
04. What's the name of the tapestry that depicts the Battle Of Hastings?
05. What's the largest island in Europe?
06. What is the neighbouring town to The Simpsons' Springfield?
07. What the famous Greek sapphic island called?
08. After how many years is your wooden anniversary?
09. After how many years is your tin anniversary?
10. After how many years is your crystal anniversary?
11. Scientists using the Z machine at Sandia National Laboratories have produced superheated gas exceeding temperatures of 2 billion degrees Kelvin. How many times hotter than the sun is this? A - 10x, B - 50x or C - 100x
12. In the news this week a German guy is suing his girlfriend's brother because his dog bit his what?
13. We asked 100 people what you shouldn't eat on a diet. Name two in the top five.
14. We asked 100 people what you put on during the summer months. Name two in the top five.
15. We asked 100 people what you can put your foot in. Name two in the top five.
16. We asked 100 people what you can bet on. Name two in the top five.
17. How plays Professor Minerva McGonagall in the Harry Potter films?
18. The White House is the most visited house in the US. What's the second?
19. What the Japanese word for "numeral(s) limited to a single person"?
20. Chromophobia is a fear of A - shiny objects, B - colours, or C - bright lights?
21. What did Barclays Bank first introduce n 1967?
22. What three things does the cocktail BMW contain?
23. How long in feet is a Blue Whale's penis? (within 20%)
24. There are four words in English that end in -DOUS. Name one other than 'tremendous'.
25. Who's autobiography is entitled "Losing My Virginity"?
26. Which politician was named Tarzan?
27. Who starred in 1943 film Lassie Come Home?
28. Which day of the week is an Adamms family child?
29. Who's last diary entry on May 31 1669 concludes: "And thus ends all that I doubt I shall ever be able to do with mine own eyes in keeping of my journal."
30. Which two actors starred in the Sweeney?
31. What year did Uri Gegaren first go into space? A - 1961, B - 1962, or C - 1963?
32. What was the name of Princess Diana's car driver when it crashed in 1997?
33. Who was Madonna's first husband?
34. What is the smallest digit on the human body?
35. What is the bone in the upper arm called?
36. How long was the world's longest fart flame? A - 3ft, B - 8ft, or C - 12ft?
Tuesday, March 14, 2006
Best Round The Horne Gag...
Last night's Kenneth Williams night was fab. Best gag?
Kenneth Horne: Doctor, do you charge your patients?
Doctor: Not the ladies... I sidle up to them.
Bum Fun at the Gym...
Bank tube station has this sign. Looks like you can join your local leisure centre - and have some "bum fun" too! Tee, hee.
Monday, March 13, 2006
Kenneth Williams on BBC Four...
Being a big Kenneth Willaims fan I shall be glued to BBC Four tonight as they have a whole night dedicated to him.
19:00: Round the Horne... Revisited. Brian Cooke, the only surviving scriptwriter from the groundbreaking 60s satirical radio comedy, adapts a selection of the original material for TV. Starring Charles Armstrong, Kate Brown, Nigel Harrison, Jonathan Rigby and Robin Sebastian.
20:30: Kenneth Williams in his Own Words. Drawing from the extensive BBC archive of footage from Williams' long career, this film allows a unique comedy talent and much-loved performer to tell his own story in his own words.
21:00: Kenneth Williams - Fantabulosa! Michael Sheen. Dramatised portrait of the popular comedian who craved fame and recognition throughout his career but was never comfortable with his own identity, adapted from the diaries of Williams himself.
22:20: Jackanory. The Dribblesome Teapots. From 1969 to 1986, Kenneth Williams presented 69 episodes of the children's story series, including this classic from 1978 written by Norman Hunter.
22:35: Reputations: Kenneth Williams. Two-part documentary exploring the eccentric actor Kenneth Williams, a man who hid his unhappiness by creating humour from misery.
23:35: Reputations: Kenneth Williams. The second of a two-part documentary following Williams through his days on the Carry On films, the chat show years, and to his mysterious death. Some strong language.
Friday, March 10, 2006
Last night on the way round to see Stuart after his op I popped into Expectations to pick up a little something (let's just call it an 'item') and guess who I bumped into? Boy George! He lookede shorter than I remember him. Very pale and rather plump. He was good form though.
I congratulated him on the successful resolution of his court case (him reporting a burglary / the New York police finding 12 grams of cocaine in his apartment / his plea bargain got a potential 10 years in prison reduced to £575 costs plus 5 week community service).
He said that the whole thing was "a fabrication" and he only plea bargained as he didn't have the money to fight the case. I asked him if he knew what community service he was going to have to do yet. He said no but there would be three choices. I said choose the gayest one. He laughed. Incidentally he kept fidgeting the whole time we were talking. Eventually he just bought some poppers.
It was subconscious I know but I kept sniffing the whole time I was talking to him. Oops!
This is a great mashups blog. Especially the video mashup of The Kinks, Prince & Smokey Robinson.
Over the past few months my fingers have been suffering more and more from repetitive Strain Injury (RSI). Particularly in my little fingers. Stabbing pains in the middle of the night wake me up and I end up sleeping on my hands to keep them straight and so relieve the pain.
I think it's a combination of three factors that has brought it on: (1) I tap away at a keyboard morning, noon and night with very few breaks (would you believe my boss has suggested I go out more in the evenings?!), (2) I type with two fingers and my other fingers clawed up (bad technique), and (3) Stress (well, I working on that little cookie).
In the past when I've suffered from RSI I've actually resorted to sellotaping my fingers straight with tape on the back of my fingers to I can't bend them. Looks bizarre but does help.
Does anyone have any other suggestions that might help but perhaps won't make me look such a berk as having tape on my fingers?
Thursday, March 09, 2006
Real Life Simpsons Intro...
Wow! The Simspons intro in real life!
Beer: The Wonder Drug...
So you've got a bit of a hangover after last night's beer session, huh? Take comfort:
- Beer isnít fattening
- Beer fights heart disease
- Beer fights cancer
- Beer makes you clever
- Beer makes you rich
Telewest's Hunky Threesome...
Telewest's new postal advertising campaign popped through the door yesterday. It's trying to get me to sign up a complete package of broadband, digital TV and phone. So pictured in the flyer are three hunky men with the title "threesome". Hmmm. Gay marketing perhaps?
Wednesday, March 08, 2006
Last Friday I went straight from work to go and see Sarah and the triplets. I had a spring in my step as I went. It just fills me with so much pride to see Sarah so happy and the triplets doing so well. I fed Dylan, he smiled at me and I smiled back and he fell asleep in my arms. Awww. Bless.
Dylan Eve Lola
Brain teaser answers...
1. The bottle costs £1.05 and the cork costs 5p
2. The nail will be the same height since trees grow from the top.
Tuesday, March 07, 2006
Try this maze.
1. A bottle and its cork cost £1.10 and the bottle costs £1 more than the cork. How much does the cork cost?
2. When Ashley was six years old she hammered a nail into her favourite tree to mark her height. Ten years later at age sixteen, Ashley returned to see how much higher the nail was. If the tree grew by five centimetres each year, how much higher would the nail be?
Monday, March 06, 2006
Thirty Second Bunny Movies...
It's a little know fact that there is a bunny mafia running Hollywood. See these thirty second bunny movies if proof were needed: Jaws, The Shining, Titanic and War Of The Worlds
Friday, March 03, 2006
The London Tube Map Archive...
Fascinating this: The London Tube Map Archive. Good to see York Road, Dover Street and other since closed tube stations on a map again.
MS in Geek Sex Hard Sell Shocker...
There was a time when Microsoft ads were a bit more entertaining than the current "dinosaur head" offerings which have of late been baffling adults and scaring small children worldwide.
The proof comes in this hitherto-unseen-in-the-civilised-world shocker for MS Office Student and Teacher Edition 2003.
Fantastic. Apparently this is "an old advertisement which ran only in New Zealand for a short period and is no longer being used". For the love of all that's Holy, why not? Let's face it, this is the only advertising campaign ever to give Linux programmers the vaguest hope that they might one day have sex with a real person. Old school? You bet. Bring it on...
Thursday, March 02, 2006
Last night Matt, Matt's niece and I went to see the biopic Capote at the Vue Islington. Better than Brokeback Mountain in many ways it is a film with pathos and emotion with a stellar performance by Philip Seymour Hoffman in the title role.
Capote, an openly gay man, was as well known for his high-pitched, lisping voice, outrageous manner of dress, and wild fabrications about acquaintances and events as he was for his literary output. Capote was a lifelong friend of Monroeville neighbour Harper Lee and was the inspiration for the character of Dill in her best-seller To Kill A Mockingbird.
[***Warning: spoiler alert***] As is shown in the film, Lee lent Capote considerable assistance during his research for In Cold Blood. The book was inspired by a 300-word article in New York Times in November 1959, describing the unexplained murder of a family of four in rural Kansas. Fascinated by the brief story, Capote traveled to Holcomb, Kansas, scene of the Clutter family massacre, with Lee, and over the course of the next few years became acquainted with everyone involved in the investigation and most of the residents of the small town. Rather than taking notes during interviews with those involved in the investigation, Capote would commit everything to memory and write it down after the interview was over. Lee assisted him for the first few months of his investigation and was able to make inroads into the community by befriending the wives of those Capote wanted to interview. Prior to the book's publication, Capote was well-known in literary and theatrical circles, but In Cold Blood introduced him to a mass audience worldwide when it became an international best seller. Capote was widely criticized when he admitted his relief that the Clutter killers, Perry Smith and Richard "Dick" Hickock, had been given the death penalty; had they not, In Cold Blood might never have been published. The core of the film is the conflict between Capote's self-absorbed obsession with finishing the book and his compassion for his subjects. Good stuff.
Cars are Expensive to Run #7...
My car is up for it's annual MOT. So it was in the garage on Monday getting tutted at by the City Renault
Last year I drove it a mere 780 miles. So that works out about £3 a mile to run when you take into account all the other running costs. It'd probably have been cheaper to get taxis everywhere!
Wednesday, March 01, 2006
Sodom on the Thames...
Matt and I went to a book reading last night at Gay's The Word. Morris Kaplan was reading from his book Sodom on the Thames: Sex, Love, and Scandal in Wilde Times. Great fun.
Sodom on the Thames looks closely at three episodes involving sex between men in late-nineteenth-century England. Morris Kaplan draws on extensive research into court records, contemporary newspaper accounts, personal correspondence and diaries, even a pornographic novel. He focuses on two notorious scandals and one quieter incident. In 1871, transvestites "Stella" (Ernest Boulton) and "Fanny" (Frederick Park), who had paraded around London's West End followed by enthusiastic admirers, were tried for conspiracy to commit sodomy. In 1889-1890, the "Cleveland Street affair" revealed that telegraph delivery boys had been moonlighting as prostitutes for prominent gentlemen, one of whom fled abroad. In 1871, Eton schoolmaster William Johnson resigned in disgrace, generating shockwaves among the young men in his circle whose romantic attachments lasted throughout their lives. Kaplan shows how profoundly these scandals influenced the trials of Oscar Wilde in 1895 and contributed to growing anxiety about male friendships. Sodom on the Thames reconstructs these incidents in rich detail and gives a voice to the diverse people involved. It deepens our understanding of late Victorian attitudes toward urban culture, masculinity, and male homoeroticism. Kaplan also explores the implications of such historical narratives for the contemporary politics of sexuality.
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