Consider this!

I have just received a message which contains the tag line “Please consider the environment before printing this e-mail.”

Oh please! Why do companies nowadays think they have the right to lecture me in this way? “Please enjoy responsibly” is another one.

I’m not in favour of unnecessary e-mail printing or irresponsible drinking, you understand. I just don’t want to be bombarded with sanctimonious messages. So get off your high horse and stick to brewing beer, will you?

Youth Without Youth (2007)

Youth Without YouthChristmas turkey, anyone? This meandering, self-indulgent waste of time had me fooled to start with. Francis Ford Coppola and Tim Roth are blue-chip names, so I sat back and enjoyed the cinematography confident that my growing doubts would be dispelled as the film unfolded.

Unfolded? Unravelled, meandered and disappeared up its own …. This is one self-indulgent confused mess of a movie. The dubbed dialogue from Bruno Ganz and others is distractingly stilted, and occasionally crass: “What kind of birds do they have in Malta?” “That’s a Maltese Falcon!”
Continue reading

Led Zeppelin gig

The surviving members of Led Zeppelin are playing the O2 arena tonight with Jason Bonham playing drums in place of his late father John.

I saw Led Zeppelin perform twice; on 29 November 1971 at the Liverpool Stadium and on 14 January 1973 at the Liverpool Empire.

Queued patiently all day for the Stadium tickets. (I remember the distinctive smell from the grain storage warehouses which surrounded the old 1930’s boxing stadium, now demolished). On the evening of the concert, the band kept the audience waiting for what seemed like hours before deigning to come onstage.

The gig at the Empire was much more comfortable. I remember Robert Plant asking for quiet during “Stairway to Heaven”. Alas his plea was in vain; we hadn’t paid to hear acoustic songs!

Phone rage

“I was so angry I slammed the phone down!” Well these days, it’s impossible to do that, no matter how infuriating the conversation. “I was so angry I really jabbed the little rubber ‘end call’ button” doesn’t quite convey the strength of feeling involved, does it?

Amazon Kindle

Amazon Kindle Wireless Reading DeviceThe future’s bright: the future’s already here! Now there’s a handheld electronic ‘book’ you can take anywhere, think of a title, and get it downloaded in one minute. The 3G technology frees you up from computers and WiFi hotspots as it uses the cellular phone network. Newspapers, magazines, blogs and even Wikipedia are all available to read on the ‘electronic paper’ display. Amazing.

This really is a 21st century device. I have always thought that Amazon was an unimaginative use for the internet. Although it gained prominence during the dotcom boom, it was only a mail order retailer at heart. Nothing revolutionary there. Just as early cars were horseless carriages and the first iron bridges were constructed using woodworking joints, Amazon was in the business of selling books through the post.
Continue reading