It's coming... o v e r y o u r h e a d . . .


Crawling through technology, life and love

Contact me:
hotmail
home


Listening:

Playing:
Pool Paradise - GC on Wii

iTuning:
Podcasts - Chris Moyles, Mark Kermode and Stephen Fry

Reading:
All 24 25 Tintin books

Bits and Bobs:
Wish List
Gerry's Lyrics Pop Quiz
Minipops Quiz

Sites I like:
Marc Almond
Top 40 Singles
News
IMdb
The Register
Hacks
Recent GBlogs
Arsenal FC

Some blogs I enjoy:
bboyblues2000
bitful
blogadoon
brainsluice
chig
groc
minkered
scally
sparky
troubled diva

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


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Saturday, August 26, 2006

Ibiza...


Today Overyourhead is off on it's summer hols for 10 days to (hopefully) sunny and warm Ibiza. I seriously intend to leave the world behind so am unlikely to be blogging until I get back (OK, famous last words). See you soon.


Friday, August 25, 2006

Madonna at the RVT...




Church of the Poisoned Mind...




Says It All...


The above images are, of course, both fakes. You can make you own concert tickets, vinyl label, cassette label or (better still) church sign. Hours of fun.
[Thanks David]


Thursday, August 24, 2006

Who Wants To Be Millionaire?...


A million quid maybe not quite what it used to be but it would sure take a long time to save that kind of dosh.


Who Wants To Be An Millionaire Idiot?...


So you've made it on to the show. It's your big chance. What could go wrong?


Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Arsenal 2-1 Dinamo Zagreb (5-1 agg.)...


Thank God. A win in our new stadium. So we go through. It was a good game - fun to watch, with lots of cheering (and jeering). The Croats were in fine voice too - letting off smoke bombs and beating their drums. An added bonus was when they scored their opening goal: all their fans took their shirts off and waved them in the air. And they left them off for the rest of the game too. Nice.


Candi Staton...


Last night Stuart, Darren, Rob and I went to see Candi Staton at London's glitzy Jazz Cafe.

Candi was on good form, the audience were behind her all the way and she put on a great show. All the hits and more. Can I get a witness?

Highlights were her classics such as In the Ghetto, Stand By Your Man and I'd Rather Be An Old Man's Sweetheart. But her new release was a killer too - His Hands - a clever song about love, abuse, and redemption written by Will Oldham. Candi emotes first about a husband's hands of love, then his hands of violence, and finally forgiveness from the hands of God.

Naturally the crowd went wild for Young Hearts Run Free towards the end and the final number You Got the Love. Funny that the encore was just that same song repeated though.

My guilty pleasure was midway through the set when Candi said, "This next song was a big hit over here in England." And proceeded to sing her quite wonderful 1977 hit Nights on Broadway. I was in disco heaven.


Punch...


Ha ha. Funny clip of lady getting punched by another lady.


Tuesday, August 22, 2006

David McAlmont...


Last night Stuart, David, Darren, David and I went to see David McAlmont at London's glitzy Jazz Cafe.

McAlmont was simply wonderful. Effortless holding both the audience's attention and every note. He was promoting his new album Set One - You Go to My Head so we were treated to many standards such as You Go To My Head itself, Night and Day, Saving All My Love For You, Black Coffee, Under My Skin, One for My Baby, A Certain Smile and Shadow of Your Smile.

For an encore out came Bernard Butler and we were then treated to the magnificent Yes, Falling and Speed (the new single).

The high point of the evening for me was the rather saucy cover of Bessie Smith's Kitchen Man. "When I eat his donuts, all I leave is the hole / Anytime he wants to, why, he can use my sugar bowl." Marvelous.


Crystal Meth: Before and After...


Crystal Meth is bad for you, boys and girls. And if further proof be needed here's some before and after shots from an Amercian Police anti-drugs site. Mind you these people didn't look much cop before they started using.


Monday, August 21, 2006

Fun With Treadmills...


The band OK Go have a great video out for their single Here It Goes Again. Fun with treadmills.
[Thanks Rog]


Happy Birthday, dear...


I was at a comedy show in Oz, the comedian told a funny story about a dwarf. Suddenly a dwarf shouts up from the audience, something about it not being funny. To give the comedian his due, he said he didn't see him down there - to much amusement (to me anyway). The dwarf replied that it was his birthday and he had spoilt it.

The comedian feeling a little guilty now then proceeds to get everyone in the audience to sing happy birthday to him. The only thing is, no-one knew the little guy's name, so when everyone got to the line they simply sang, "Happy Birthday, dear....dwarf!..."

Ha ha. Maybe you had to be there.


Saturday, August 19, 2006

Arsenal 1-1 Aston Villa...


Bollocks. Only one point in our first game of the season.


Friday, August 18, 2006

(Moto)Red Square...


Scissor Sisters will play a free gig in London's Trafalgar Square next month. Apply for tickets via the Motorola website: 1-50 a text all proceeds go to the Red charity.


Emirates from My House...


The Premiership starts on Saturday. First Arsenal game of the season is Aston Villa at home. As you can see below it doesn't take me long to get there.

[Click for bigger version]


Thursday, August 17, 2006

"Gas Attack In Soho Pub"...


We were out celebrating Darren's birthday last night and post-dinner popped into Comptons for a beer. We were questioned on the way in by a rather cute policeman. We didn't know why until today though...

"Gas Attack In Soho Pub", screamed the Standard headline. The BBC are a little more sedate about it with Noxious substance let off in pub.


Cover This...


Yesterday I bought a couple of albums I'd been after for a while; Betcha Bottom Dollar by the The Puppini Sisters and Bande A Part by Nouvelle Vague. Both albums are essentially covers albums, the Puppini's doing The Andrews Sisters and Nouvelle Vague doing punk/rock/new wave as lounge.

Interestingly both albums contain a cover version of the same song: Blondie's Heart Of Glass.

High on my list of 'next to buy' is the Easy Star follow up to Dub Side Of The Moon, the rather wonderfully titled Radiodread (you can listen to samples on that link too). Whereas Dub Side Of The Moon was a reggae reinterpretation of Pink Floyd's Dark Side Of The Moon Radiodread will be a similar reworking of Radiohead's O.K Computer. Can't wait.


Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Google Tests Blogger Upgrade...


There is a new Blogger beta out with some supposedly some fabby new features such as categorize posts with labels, controlling who can read it and changing the appearance and content of it with a mouse instead of HTML. I guess I'll have to wait to be invited to try it.


Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Unmanned Barge...


"Pete has got plenty to play with and is still the nailed-on favourite, but Nikki's drifting like an unmanned barge. She could easily fall at the first hurdle."


One-liners...


So these are the nations three best one-liners:

Pete Kay: "Garlic bread, it's the future, I've tasted it"

Mrs Merton: "So, what first attracted you to the millionaire Paul Daniels?"

David Brent: "If you were to ask me to name three geniuses, I probably wouldn't say Einstein, Newton... I'd go Milligan, Cleese, Everett, Sessions...".


Monday, August 14, 2006

Poland...


Below are a few snaps from our Polish trip. And click here for the full set.



Friday, August 11, 2006

Big Brother Ruined...


It pains me to say this but... I've lost all patience, sympathy and interest in Big Brother this year. Shame really as I'd been hooked for the whole three months rarely missing a show but with one week to go I feel betrayed by the producers. Sure housemates leave, housemates return, but this year the show's producers have gone too far - blatant changing of the rules to get the show that they want (and promote) has turned it from a show that the public want to an over-produced rip off. Never once in the previous seven years I've I believed the show to be 'fixed'. But this week has changed my mind.

I, for one, will be switching off in the final week.


Thursday, August 10, 2006

'Plot to blow up planes' foiled...


Looks like it's RIP hand luggage.

A terrorist plot to blow up planes in mid-flight from the UK to the US has been disrupted, Scotland Yard has said. It is thought the plan was to detonate explosive devices smuggled on aircraft in hand luggage. Police have arrested about 18 people in the London area after an anti-terrorist operation lasting several months.

The Department for Transport set out the details of the security measures at UK airports: Passengers will not be allowed to take any hand luggage on to any flights in the UK, the department said. Only the barest essentials - including passports and wallets - will be allowed to be carried on board in transparent plastic bags.


Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Krakow / Auschwitz
We arrived in Krakow on officially the bumpiest flight ever. That from Drew and James - both seasoned and frequent flyers. I had white knuckles and a wild staring look by the end of it. Thank you Captain Kangaroo.

The hotel was perhaps a little further out of town than we had envisioned - but hey, that gave us ample opportunity to sample Krakow's mad taxi drivers at close quarters.

We dropped our bags off and went into town for a look around. Biggest medieval town square in Europe, dontchaknow. All rather picturesque. After a spot of brunch we talked about whether we wanted to make a trip to Auschwitz concentration camp.

I think we all had mixed feelings about going (Should we go? Was it right to go? Would it be tasteless to go? etc) But we made up our minds, got on a bus and an hour later we were standing right outside the famous Arbeit Macht Frei gate.

It all seemed so strange - having a English speaking Polish guide telling us in plain terms the horrors of what took place there 65 years ago; "This is where the Jews were stripped of their possessions", "This is where the Jews were shot" - utterly unreal to hear and to come to terms with to be honest. But the tour was deeply respectful and the many Jews who were touring at the same time seemed to feel so too. It got the balance right between telling you the facts and making clear the awful tragedy of what happened.

About an hour in - just after looking at the mound of children's shoes and the mountain of human hair - a sense of utter despair washed over me. A profound sense of sadness that such despicable acts of torture and inhumanity could be carried out right here, right in this very room where we were standing.

It was an education too. I'd naively thought Auschwitz was just one place. In fact there was Auschwitz II - a huge second camp where Jews were kept under even more inhuman conditions and where the mass executions took place - 2000 Jews at a time gassed in four massive gas chambers and then their bodies carried up in lifts to be burnt. There was even an Auschwitz III. In fact there were forty or more sub-camps in the area. Auschwitz was a huge killing machine. Sickening, it turned my stomach.

So it was harrowing tour, yes, but I am glad I went. Nothing can quite bring something home like seeing it with your own eyes.

There was a massive rainstorm with thunder and lightning on the way back to Krakow which just seemed to reinforce the sense of sadness of the place. We had just visited.

We had a quiet evening when we got back - just a bite to eat in town. That night I had nightmares about what I'd seen earlier that day. An unforgettable experience.



Monday, August 07, 2006

Poland...


Overyouyrhead is off for a few days break. This time Poland bound with Drew, James and Nat. Flying into Krakow and home via Warsaw. Might try and moblog if I can. If not - see you Thursday!


Brighton Pride 2006


Stuart and I went down to Brighton for the day on Saturday for the annual Brighton and Hove Pride parade and festival. It was lots of fun as I think the pictures below show). Full set to be found here.



Friday, August 04, 2006

Quick Change Artists...


Want to change your clothes but think it'll take too long? Take some tips from Quick Change Artists on America's Got Talent. Quite amazing.
[Thanks Rog]


New Victoria line train unveiled to the public...


The new Victoria line trains due to enter passenger service from 2009 will be unveiled to the public today at Euston Square Gardens.

Key features:
# Higher passenger capacity (so more people can be squashed in?)
# Better acceleration leading to reduced journey times (so we'll be chucked about in the carriage even more with all that heavy braking?)
# Improved accessibility (so more people can flood on to the carriage before others have had a chance to get off?)
# CCTV coverage in each carriage (so they can spy on us?)
# Enhanced on-train customer information (so they show us a picture of the "signal failure" rather than just a garbled message?)

As you might be able to tell, I've got a bit of a downer on the Victoria Line at the moment.


Thursday, August 03, 2006

Riddle Me This...


I have seas but no water,
Coasts with no sand,
Towns but no people,
Mountains no land.

What am I?


Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Search Me...


"Is this your bag, sir?" he asks. "Yes. Yes, it is", I fix a smile, determined not to be phased by the security guard in front of me. "Would you mind opening it for me please, sir?" "Of course not," I reply. He shoots me a look, wondering if my negative means yes or no.

It had been a fairly quick trip to the airport. Gatwick isn't my favourite place to fly from. Ok, let's face it, *no* airport is my favourite place to fly from. I hate flying. Full stop. But Gatwick ranks down towards the bottom of the list of airports. It's badly laid out and there's little to do. I get bored. Stressed and bored. But as I'm off on a business trip to Holland for a few days it was Gatwick that was the easiest to get to. So no choice really.

Anyway, returning to our security guard, my bag was being opened and I was turning a tad crimson as he pulled all my stuff out. It was only a small carry-on bag but it had three days of essentials. Out came two work shirts, a T-shirt, shoes, socks, ties, way too much underwear (was it all clean? It *looked* clean), a toiletry bag (he puts that to one side and gives me a look as if to say, "we'll save that particular embarrassment for later, *sir*") and finally my book. He flicks this upside down letting my bookmark fall out so losing my place. Was that entirely necessary?

He takes great care over my phone, iPod and watch now - asking me to turn stuff on and then swabbing each and testing the swab in a big machine that goes 'ping' like a microwave oven. Apparently a 'ping' is a good thing. No drugs, no explosive. That's a relief.

The search seemingly over, he starts to pack my things away. I say 'pack'... Really he was just stuffing it all back in my suitcase any old how wondering why is doesn't all quite fit. Only he's forgotten my toiletry bag. Until now that is. He spots it and then rather delights in opening it and taking out all sorts of things - some of which I never knew I had; some moisturiser I pinched from a hotel (he reads the label carefully), way too much Neurofen, some sedatives for my flight, over-sized plasters, condoms (I blush somewhat), lube, more condoms (more blushing), more lube, manky old cotton buds, an empty tube of toothpaste, Boots aspirin, elderflower eye gel (is it the 80s all of a sudden?), and finally (and rather triumphantly for him) right at the bottom he produces... a pair of nail scissors (oops!) A smile fleets across his lips. Fuck! I turn scarlet. "Are these yours, sir?" "Er, yes. Sorry", I rasp. "That's quite alright, sir. Lucky we found them."

Actually I think that I was the lucky one. He put the pair of scissors back in my toiletry bag(!), pushed everything towards me and said I could go. "Thank you", I mumble. Phew! I think he felt he'd made his point. But exactly what that point was was lost on me. Cheeks burning I scurried off relived and a little confused.

Oh, the mysteries of airport security.


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