26 March, 2009
malign italy and its national carrier, crapitalia, all you will.
however. GOD BLESS. my flight was delayed by more than an hour. i was given a food voucher. rightly suspicious i venture up to the autogrill. now, unlike anywhere else in the world where roadside food is shit and airport fodder even worse, in italy one can dine rather well. i had a lovely plate of gnocchi with a healthy tomato sauce and an even healthier plate of fagiolini (string beans) sprinkled with some extra virgin olive oil. not, the kind of stuff usually available at your run of the mill airport eaterie. am most pleased. viva l'italia.
25 March, 2009
no. not you.
mina. light of my life. fire of my loins.
mina. my longtime companion. faithful friend. comrade in caper mischief. my mother superior. my father confessor. loyal sister. anything humanely possible, short of homicide, has been committed in your entrails. then again, i even came close to murder. thank you for not letting me die in the driving seat when i decided to ram us both into a ditch while absolutely wankered.
well it's now time to let you go.
everyone who has known and loved mina has a story of the little feisty one. please share. well am beside myself. going to polish off the 2 inches of red martini left in the fridge. there will never be the likes of you again.
18 March, 2009
bette davis: LOOK AT HER. she is EIGHTY. smoking. wearing a beret. and wearing a little black dress and fuck me boots.
not the film, mind you, but the best review of Vicky Cristina Absolute Pants
courtesy of shortest indian
here it is in all its copy and pasted glory, with my fave bits (i.e. where i nodded in furious agreement and snarled in approval) annoyingly highlighted.
"So what can I say about this film....? Woody, you seem to have done it again....the hope, the anticipation, the desperate longing for a new film that was not utterly terrible, followed by disappointment, disillusionment and suicidal urges (well perhaps that's a slight exaggeration). I'm afraid to report that Vicky Christina Barcelona is the not the 'return to form' that it has been touted as in some of the film press. It is not a good film. I wouldn't go so far as to say that it was terrible but it is definitely not good. And perhaps these days 'not terrible' does count as a return to form for Woody.
VC Barcelona tells the story of two American women who spend a month in Spain and experience some of that European passion that apparently isn't to be found in the US. Christina is the archetypal wild child, with a 'if it don't hurt, it ain't love' world view, whereas Vicky is engaged to one of those dependable but dull-types. However, due to the poor characterisation it may well have been Vicky who was crazy one, I'm honestly not sure, so from now on they will be referred to as blonde girl and brunette girl. The girls meet a Spanish painter who whisks them away for a weekend in the country, blonde girl immediately has the hots for him whereas brunette girl is sensible and suspicious. However, for various reasons it's she who is seduced by, and falls in love with, him. However blonde girl remains oblivious to this and eventually shacks up with said painter, and later his slightly deranged wife in possibly the world's most unlikely menage a trois. Brunette girl meanwhile carries on being sensible. This is pretty much all that happens.
Now Woody Allen films are hardly famed for their fast-paced, action filled plots, but they did used to contain enough emotional insights and witty dialogue to easily sustain them. VC Barcelona does not. What you do get in an annoying voice-over from some random man, telling you what blonde girl and brunette girl think and feel about things as this is not particularly obvious from what they are saying or doing. There are also a couple of minor details in this film that somehow became immediately incredibly annoying:
a) Brunette girl is supposed to be doing a Masters degree in Catalan culture, but she doesn't speak Spanish or Catalan!!! That's going to be a challenge then isn't it?!? Somehow being shown around a restuarant kitchen by someone speaking a language she doesn't understand counts as research in Woody-world.
b) Javier Bardem constantly having to say/shout, 'Speak eenglis, speak eenglis in this house' to Penelope Cruz. I don't know why this annoyed me so much, it just did.
Maybe I'm being super-harsh about all this but this film did appear to be giant excuse to spend some time in Spain for some lovely dappled sunshine shots and to have Penelope Cruz and Scarlett Johannson get off with each other. However despite the stilted script, the endless cliches, the lack of characterisation and missing plot, this was not a totally excreable film, merely very disappointing. Rebecca Hall makes a convincing American for a posh, English girl, Javier Bardem at least demonstrates his range by being the opposite of menacing in this role (although for a alleged lothario he somehow comes over as a bit of a bumbling prat), and Penelope Cruz does make a good job of scene stealing by either shouting in Spanish or being husky and alluring (I suspect the former appeals to Oscar voters).
I know that my disappointment with this film is strongly related to how much I loved Woody Allen as a teenager. Discovering films he'd made when I was still a small child was a true delight, as was being able to share this with top pal F (I think this was one of the things that cemented our friendship). To now see him regularly churning out this type of pap is quite a bitter experience. I don't expect another Annie Hall, Sleeper or Play it Again Sam. I can understand that Woody might not be in a very comedy place right now. He might want to write about relationships in a different way, and that's fine too. But what I do expect in any film, let alone one written and directed by Woody Allen, is some sense of who the main characters actually are and why they do the things that they do. Any sense of this seems to have been missing from Woody's films for the past decade or so, resulting in work that lacks any connection with its audience and sometimes verges on the ridiculous.
I saw VC Barcelona around a week ago now, and I think my antipathy towards it has been increasing. I think this is because every time Woody makes another below-par film my memories of some of his best work and the times I spent watching them become very slightly tarnished, and that is something I really resent."
I conclude here.
17 March, 2009
back in the day, oats and i used to indulge in some real kicking private parties
me, her and a bottle of something and some of our favorite drinking companions.
leading the roster was elliot smith. the fact that he stabbed himself earned him extra stripes. his BRB (between the bars) is the ultimate trip.
as back-up we had relative newcomer emily haines with such delightful, heart-warming and life-affirming numbers such as:
numb is the new high?
shrine to fast goodbyes?
crowd surf off a cliff?
we of course could rely on golden oldies such as nick cave, the cure, johnny cash, a splash of tori amos, a dash of the pretenders. after a certain cut-off point it all became a massive blur.
GOOD TIMES, eh oatsie?
this is an OAP just for us:
March 17. 10 p.m.-ish
f: just begun on some light damien. 9 crimed it.
o: mmm...i did drugs don't work. that old chestnut
f: am about ready to pull out elliot
o: uh oh.. nooooo
o: wait. don't go there. how about "how to fight loneliness"?
2 minutes later
o: brb is the ultimate
well tots, expect one and all to be subjected to this little gem of a game.
old marrieds, not quite weds. who cares. we're rule blenders and benders.
moderator: now, tot c, if tot a was reincarnated as a dog what breed would he be?
tot c: holds optimistically up a banner with lassie
tot a (crestfallen): waves a cap-locked great dane
moderator: what is one item of clothing that tot a wears that you just cannot stand?
tot t: confidently holds up a waiscoat
tot a: cheekily holds up his CK briefs
moderator: yes, so f, how old do you think j was when she had her first kiss?
f (mutters slut, slag, ho under muted breath): 2!
j (shocked appalled): it's DOUBLE, 4!
moderator: so, f, what is oats favourite christian bale film?
f (remembers the froth): american psycho!
O (barely able to contain glee to her perversion): american psycho!
quite enough of this horrid game.
16 March, 2009
14 March, 2009
13 March, 2009
tucking into bed at 830pm and tuning into ROUNDS at the "premier inn" in CRAWLEY.
interviews to leading finance ministers: two
chocolate bars: 2
crisps, packets of: 2
sandwiches most foul: 2
at 9pm am ready to murder. certainly NOT a drink
chorus: this has never happened in the decade we've known
f: pass on a drink?
chorus: collective gasp
f: sorry folks am calling it a night. i have rounds.
rounds, for those not in the know, is grey's anatomy.
i fecking love it. i cry. i laugh. and it's all i wanted to do tonight.
oats, you were right. izzie is KILLING ME.
09 March, 2009
06 March, 2009
03 March, 2009
maude and i went for a rape at the caffarel, as taking a walk in the park has otherwise become known as. just round the corner of our house is one of rome's most amazing parks. think hampstead heath. alas, on valentine's something not very nice happened there. well, undeterred, me and the turd went for an exploratory tour of the local moors and fell in love with them. we have decided its absolutely fine and we won't let the prospect of sexual assaults and muggings put us off.
attached are the immediate views. heathcliff!
oh and the local trattoria where guests will be taken when i am took lazy to cook.
(aka all the time).