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

Crawling through technology, life and love

Contact me:


Pool Paradise - GC on Wii

Podcasts - Chris Moyles, Mark Kermode and Stephen Fry

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
The Register
Recent GBlogs
Arsenal FC

Some blogs I enjoy:
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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Wednesday, April 30, 2008
Mayor Of London...
Tomorrow it's the 2008 elections for the Mayor of London. And I'm really torn as to who to vote for; I admire the old Left, I'd like to be more Green, recently I've been more New Labour, I think Boris is funny (he used to live opposite me) and the Lib-Dems have a gay.

Choices, choices, choices.

And then there's the London Assembly to vote for too.

Anyone got any advice?

Tuesday, April 29, 2008
Derby 2-6 Arsenal...
It was a great game last night. We thrashed them. But questions do need to be asked as to how we let in two goals. It does still leave us with a possible (but let's face it not a probably) chance at the Premiership title.

Monday, April 28, 2008
Blake's 7: The Return
According to the BBC a new remake of sci-fi series Blake's 7 could soon return to television screens.

Elaine Pyke, commissioning editor for drama for Sky One, Two and Three, said the broadcaster was making the largest commitment to UK drama in its history, spending more than £10m - all on high definition productions - in 2008/9. She said of the Blake project: "At a time when science fiction shows often discard good story-telling for overblown visual effects - and following the lead of Doctor Who and Battlestar Galactica - the time is ripe for a revival of a show that represents the best traditions of the genre, not to mention one of the best-loved and most successful dramas of all time."

Friday, April 25, 2008
Pub Quiz...
We were back at the Hemingford Arms last night with Andrew, Tim, Sam el al for another bash at their weekly pub quiz. We'd been there before (and won) but this time we weren't so lucky. Or to be more honest we were beaten fair and square. We got twenty-four right out of thrity. The winner got twenty-eight and the fifty-six pound cash prize.

The questions were as varied and random as ever. We were given a drink and had to say what two fruit juices had been mixed together. We were asked what is tuber melanosporum? The Hawaiian alphabet has only twelve letters: five vowels and seven consonants. Name at least four of the consonants. And the how many number ones did the Beatles have in a row, how many chromosome pairs does the normal human have and how old was the boy left home alone in Home Alone? All good stuff.

Brain Teaser Answers...
The answer is "ice"


Thursday, April 24, 2008
Brain Teaser...
Replace each group of crosses with the same three letter word. Words must be formed to fit the clues given.

A) _ _ _ _ _ X X X Clue: PIMENTO
B) _ X X X _ Clue: CUBED
C) _ X X X _ _ _ Clue: GIVE PERMISSION

Wednesday, April 23, 2008
Happy St George's Day...
Today is St George's Day. The patron saint of England.

As you may know he wasn't actually English (in fact England didn't really come into being for another 700 years after St George death). No, St George was actually born in Turkey in 3rd century AD. His parents were Christian, he later lived in Palestine where he became a Roman soldier but protested against Rome's persecution of Christians. He was then imprisoned and tortured, but stayed true to his faith, before being beheaded at Lydda in Palestine. The 23rd April was named as Saint George's day way back in 1222.

He is patron saint not only of England but also of Aragon, Canada, Catalonia, China, England, Ethiopia, Georgia, Germany, Greece, Lithuania, Montenegro, Palestine, Portugal, Russia, and Serbia, as well as the cities of Amersfoort, Beirut, Ferrara, Freiburg, Genoa, Istanbul, Ljubljana, Moscow and Venice (second to Saint Mark). He's also patron saint of soldiers, archers, cavalry and chivalry, farmers and field workers, riders and saddlers, and he helps those suffering from leprosy, plague and syphilis(!) In recent years he has been adopted as patron saint of Scouts. Also isn't St George the patron saint of ASDA?

Tuesday, April 22, 2008
Arsenal 2-0 Reading...
Paul and I went with rather heavy hearts to the Emirates on Saturday to watch the penultimate home games of this our third silverware-free season in a row. We've not been playing very well recently and didn;t really have high hopes. Surprisingly the Gunners played quite well lifting our mood considerably. We should have scored more of course but we would say that, wouldn't we? We left happy though.

Monday, April 21, 2008
Oh Brother...
Last Friday Drew, David and met up with Sas and his goodlooking Icelandic friend for a spot of bar hoping around Hoxtonia. We started off in the George and Dragon, then to play table football at Kick (where we had our hides tanned by a couple of French women) and finally on to the Joiners Arms where we played pool until kicking out time. We also bumped into Chris and David from Duckie and also Liam which was nice. When I eventualy got home I struggled to open my front door. My brother was staying over and he'd left the key in the lock so I couldn't get in. An hour and twenty minutes of ringing on the doorbell, ringing both home and mobile phones and hammering on the door was all to no avail. Eventually I did wake him but only after leaving twenty different types of cussing on his voicemail. Brothers!

Update: I had a dream about my brother last night. We were on a train and he was drunk and he was crying so I hugged him and told him I loved him.

Friday, April 18, 2008
Top Ten Ways to Commit Suicide...
What with Mackenzie Crook's new film causing a stir and the recent suicide cluster in Wales what better way to cheer us all up on a Friday than: Top Ten Ways to Commit Suicide

10. Drowning
09. Electric Shock
08. Exsanguination
07. Jumping
06. Suffocation
05. Carbon Monoxide Inhalation
04. Poisoning
03. Hanging
02. Drug / Alcohol Overdose
01. Gun Shot

Read the gory details (and the price of failure here).

PS: Suicide is never a solution. There is no problem so great that it can not be resolved with time and care. This list is meant not as an instruction guide, but a description of the most common forms of suicide. Please remember, no matter how bad things get, someone, somewhere is able to listen to you and help you through. The Samaritans UK

Thursday, April 17, 2008
Leaked Clone Wars Trailer...
Leaked Clone Wars trailer is the new force hotness. I guess the three prequels were all pretty much CGI so having the next one animated doesn't really feel much different.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008
Eurovision Comes To London...
You don't have to go to Belgrade to get a taste of Eurovision. Many of the acts are coming to London! Hurrah! Meet Ukraine, Romania, Malta and more. The Scala, Friday 25th April. You don't even have to be gay to go. Book tickets here:
[Thanks Popbitch]

Brain Teaser Answer...
3. First column plus second colum equals third column. Third column minus fourth column equals fifth column.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008
Brain Teaser...
What's the missing number?

4 3 7 1 6
7 2 9 5 4
3 0 3 2 1
1 4 5 3 2
2 6 8 5 ?

Monday, April 14, 2008
Yazoo News: Don't Go (8 times), Only You (6 times)...
In Your Room, the highly anticipated Yazoo 4 disc box set is to be released in the UK/Europe on 26th May 2008. The box set features remastered and 5.1 mixes of both Yazoo's classic albums Upstairs At Eric's and You And Me Both, b-sides and remixes. In addition the DVD features classic Yazoo television performances from the BBC, promotional videos and a new short film containing exclusive new interviews with Vince Clarke and Alison Moyet. This will be proceeded by a 12" vinyl release of 'Nobodys Diary' on the 12 May 2008. Record Store will be doing a 12" and digital bundle offer including an exclusive mix - "Nobody’s Diary – Soil In The Synth Remix".

- In Your Room Track Listing -
Disc 1 (CD): Upstairs at Eric's (Remastered)
01) Don't Go
02) Too Pieces
03) Bad Connection
04) I Before E Except After C
05) Midnight
06) In My Room
07) Only You
08) Goodbye '70s
09) Tuesday
10) Winter Kills
11) Bring Your Love Down (Didn't I)

Disc 2 (CD): You And Me Both (Remastered)
01) Nobody's Diary
02) Softly Over
03) Sweet Thing
04) Mr Blue
05) Good Times
06) Walk Away From Love
07) Ode To Boy
08) Unmarked
09) Anyone
10) Happy People
11) And On

Disc 3 (CD): B-Sides and Remixes
01) Situation
02) Situation (Extended Version)
03) Don't Go (Re-mix)
04) Don't Go (Re-re-mix)
05) Situation (US 12" Mix)
06) Situation (US 12" Dub)
07) The Other Side Of Love
08) The Other Side Of Love (12" Remix)
09) State Farm
10) Nobody's Diary (Extended)
11) State Farm (Extended)
12) Situation (Re-recorded)

Disc 4 (DVD)
- "2 albums, 4 singles and that was it..." -
A short film featuring new interviews with Vince Clarke and Alison Moyet, and exclusive archive footage.

- Promotional Videos -
01) Don't Go
02) The Other Side Of Love
03) Nobody's Diary
04) Situation (1990)
05) Situation - Alternative Version (1990)
06) Only You (1999)

- Yazoo At The BBC -
01) Only You (Top Of The Pops) - 29 Apr 1982
02) Only You (Cheggers Plays Pop) - 24 May 1982
03) Don't Go (Top Of The Pops) - 15 Jul 1982
04) Don't Go (Saturday Live) - 24 Jul 1982
05) Don't Go (Top Of The Pops) - 12 Aug 1982
06) The Other Side Of Love (Top Of The Pops) - 25 Nov 1982
07) The Other Side Of Love (Top Of The Pops) - 09 Dec 1982
08) Nobody's Diary (Top Of The Pops) - 19 May 1983
09) Nobody's Diary (Top Of The Pops) - 02 Jun 1983

- 5:1 And Stereo Mixes -
Upstairs At Erics
You and Me Both

Saturday, April 12, 2008
Yazoo Audio Clips (free!)...
Yazoo have remastered and are rereleasing Nobody's Diary as an EP on 12th May. There are some audio clips of the new versions available on their official web site. These seem to be free which is nice of them. I hope that was intentional! Nobody's Diary (remastered original version) and Nobody's Diary (remix by Andy Bell and JC)

Friday, April 11, 2008
Mario Kart Wii...
It's here! The day has finally arrived! Mario Kart for the Wii hits the shops in 90 minutes time. We've all got the day off work so Mark, Drew and I heading down to Game in N1 at 9am sharp. Wii wheel, worldwide racing, Mario Kart channel, new wheels and courses and motorbikes! Can't wait!

Brain Teaser Answer...
Forget BODMAS for a moment...

3 x 5 - 9 / 6 + 2 = 3

3 + 5 x 9 - 6 / 2 = 33

Thursday, April 10, 2008
iPlayer on Wii...
Its getting everywhere; the BBC's iPlayer turns up on Wii. It'll be on Virgin Media soon too apparently.

Wednesday, April 09, 2008
Brain Teaser...
Assume you are using a basic calculator and press the numbers in the order shown, replacing each question mark with a mathematical sign.

You can use the plus, minus, multiply and divide keys but each once only.

3 ? 5 ? 9 ? 6 ? 2 =

In which order should they be used to score 3 ?

and in which order should they be used to score 33 ?

Tuesday, April 08, 2008
Pansy Division - Life In A Gay Rock Band...
Last night Andy treated Stu and I to a night at the cinema. We went to the
22nd London Lesbian & Gay Film Festival at the NFT2 to see Pansy Division - Life In A Gay Rock Band which as its name suggests is an insight into Pansy Division one of the defining bands of the queercore movement.

Pansy Division are a soft punk rock band that in the early 90s made the radical decision to form a band but also be what they were; gay and out. They toured with Green Day, they had a member of Metallica play on their records and they had Judas Priest perform with them on stage. Yet despite all of this they are remain very likeable people with a keen sense of who they are and what they want.

The film itself was a documentary about the lineup changes of the band and their ups and downs recording and touring. It was really very funny. They have a fun line in song titles too. Here is an idea of the songs that Pansy Division perform (taken from The Essential Pansy Division available in all good record stores): 1 Who Treats You Right / 2 Fem In A Black Leather Jacket / 3 ANTHEM / 4 I'm Gonna Be A Slut /5 Horny In The Morning / 6 Dick Of Death / 7 Bad Boyfriend / 8 The Summer You Let Your Hair Grow Out / 9 Spiral / 10 Denny (Naked) /11 Boyfriend Wanted / 12 Luv Luv Luv / 13 James Bondage /14 Vanilla / 15 Alpine Skiing / 16 Bunnies / 17 Groovy Underwear / 18 No Protection / 19 Sweet Insecurity / 20 Deep Water / 21 You're Gonna Need Your Friends / 22 The Best Revenge / 23 Negative Queen (Stripped Bare) / 24 Headbanger / 25 Political Asshole / 26 I Can't Sleep 27 I Really Wanted You / 28 The Cocksucker Club / 29 Homo Christmas / 30 He Whipped My Ass In Tennis (Then I Fucked His Ass In Bed) / 31 Two Way Ass (unlisted bonus track)

Monday, April 07, 2008
Dr Who Off to a Great Start...
Watching the start of series thirty four of Dr Who on Saturday we were a little nervous. Excited and nervous in fact. Excited that the show was back for another thirteen week run but nervous as to whether new assistant... sorry, companion (Catherine Tate's Donna Noble) would actually be any good. Tate's comedic characters are so strong in her eponymous named show that we couldn't believe that we'd be able to get them out of our heads and be able to take her seriously. Because the actors really have to take sci-fi drama seriously otherwise is just doesn't work (OK HHGTTG and Red Dwarf aside).

The diet pills story itself was a tad lacklustre to be honest (the Russell T Davis penned stories so often are). Alien babies made of fat? But we were suitably wowed at the right points, we laughed at the script (sorry, with the script) pretty much throughout and we were suitable impressed by the special effects (didn't we see that space ship in Close Encounters Of The Third Kind?) So with a mixture of relief and indeed more than a little joy... we have to say... we loved it. It was great. Catherine Tate was a bit of a revelation. And it looks like at least 8.4 million other people agreed with us.

And a nice little twist at the end too. We spent a lot of time at various birthday parties and other events over the weekend discussing the significance of the final few seconds of the episode. Hmmm...

Saturday, April 05, 2008
Arsenal 1-1 Liverpool...
Earlier today Paul and I were at our second confrontation with Liverpool in seven days and what a miserable affair it was. Very poor. And there go our title changes for sure.

Friday, April 04, 2008
The Other Side of the Coin...
Now I'm not really precious about coins; they just sit in your pocket, sit on your bedside table and occasionally get exchanged for goods or services, right? But surely they could have come up with something better than this? When are you ever going to lay them out as a partial ('partial' mind you) shield? And in a very tourist unfriendly step they will have no numbers on them. You'll have to be able to read English to tell what they are.

Thursday, April 03, 2008
Arsenal 1-1 Liverpool...
Last night Paul and I went to see the first of three Liverpool ties in a single week. The first of these games was the Champions League quarter-final, first leg at The Emirates. We started well. After 23 minutes Van Persie's short corner was crossed for Adebayor to rise high and head in. It was a well deserved goal. 1-0. Then despite good possession we gave away a sloppy goal when Gerrard powered into the box and crossed for Kuyt to bundle home to draw the scores level. Arsenal then dominated the second half and were only kept from scoring by bad luck and bad decisions. The Gunners had a clear penalty appeal turned down after the break when Kuyt hauled back Alexander Hleb in the area. Roll on the next game on Saturday lunchtime.

Brain Teaser Answer...

Wednesday, April 02, 2008
Time Lord changes time...
Doctor Who is back this Saturday. Yay! However series thirty four starts at 6:20pm though rather than it's usual 7pm slot. Funny time to start. They must be using it as bait for the rest of the Saturday night schedule (which is a shame as it shows a lack of respect that is what ultimately lead to Dr Who being canned back in 1989).

Brain Teaser...
Can you connect all the dots with just 4 straight, connected lines without lifting your pen from the paper? (Please don't write on your screen though!)

Tuesday, April 01, 2008
Spam, Spam, Spam...
Thirty years down the line and today nearly 90% of all email is spam according to Spamhaus. Spam, as I am sure you are aware, is Unsolicited Bulk E-mail ("UBE"). Unsolicited means that the Recipient has not granted verifiable permission for the message to be sent. Bulk means that the message is sent as part of a larger collection of messages, all having substantively identical content.

SPAM® however (note the capital letters please) is the famous canned meat product consisting of mainly chopped pork and ham. Not being too happy with the bad press the word 'spam' has been getting the marketing guys are fighting back: Great in sandwiches, salads or mac & cheese, or with eggs, cheese, or pineapples, or sliced, diced, baked or fried. The name derives from "sp(iced h)am". SPAM is a registered trademark of Hormel Foods Corporation. The product name "SPAM" (used always in uppercase) has nothing to do with the internet jargon word "spam" meaning unsolicited bulk email. While "spam" (junk email) is bad for internet users, SPAM (Chopped Pork and Ham) is good for internet users. If you have never tasted SPAM, try it today!

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