Monday, January 23, 2006

what's been happening

Well, we've all just about survived the most depressing day of the year.

Otherwise, not much. I've been:

  • too much TV (curse those programmers and their new season schedules). I also blame digital TV for giving me 3 chances every week to catch ER etc.
  • A Bittersweet Life - extremely bloody, visceral, satisfying, cinematic Korean mob movie. Was pleased to see it was made by bom productions, whom I had met at the Busan film festival a few years back, and organised a NZ recce for.
  • Match Point. Ridiculous. Nothing else to say about it. A liked it (or liked Scarlett in it?)
  • Breadmaker bread. Yeah, I know. Very 1999. But there's never any good French bread left at the deli by the end of the day, and regular bread in the UK is worse than awful chemical gunk, which stays on the shelves for days, so never fresh despite all the preservatives. My uncle gave me an old one of his that he doesn't use at Christmas time, and I haven't looked back. Loaves aren't very loaf-shaped, but taste good.
  • Making up for my misshapen bread are a series of perfectly loaf-shaped cakes - gingerbread last week, marmalade cake the week before. I'm working my way through Nige's Kitchen Diaries
Listening to:
  • Belle & Sebastian - live last week (chaperoning some 13 yr-olds to their first gig) and on my ipod since
  • Podcasts - Nature, Jon Snow, Ricky Gervais so far
  • more, generally, since apple replaced my ailing ipod battery

Sunday, January 08, 2006

More connectedness

Not people this time (although Tim did give me and the rest of the world a handy update on the old flat, and I did read about Harper Simon, who is (was?) in a band with A's cousin, Chris, in the paper this week).

I've been reading Richard Holloway's meditative and simple, powerful book, Looking in the Distance. Subtitled "the human search for meaning" it's just the thing for this time of year - the beginning of a year, especially when coupled with the time off work that yields rare and precious thinking time, always brings out a bit of "looking in the distance". Feeling a bit melancholy after watching Brokeback Mountain, I was delighted (well, as delighted as one can feel, while maintaining melancholia!) to read that Aristotle thought that all interesting people had a touch of melancholy in their make-up. Looking in the Distance is a book that sends you back to all sorts of wonderful sources - Burns, Larkin, Pound, Michael Ondaatje, John Rawls & John Stuart Mill (a reminder of 1st year philosophy). But Aristotle had come via someone I didn't know, Jan Morris (Trieste and the Meaning of Nowhere). 10 hours later, I found her again, describing Trieste as her favourite place in this morning's paper. Being somewhat susceptible to suggestion, I guess I'll just have to buy the book! Either that or go to Trieste.

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Old flatties and the connectedness of the universe (in NZ)

I somehow found myself reading Tim Selwyn's blog (it's the holidays - I obviously have too much time on my hands) and was amused to see a pic of another former flatmate, Karen (different flat, different city even) featured in a recent post.

Apart from random ramblings through the blogosphere, I've been passing the holidays:
  • trying to edit some decidedly patchy footage into something less patchy, shorter (potential audiences breathe a sigh of relief) and more filmic
  • sleeping lots
  • reading - Beyond Black, Original Bliss, Ghosting and some poetry for a change
  • trying to wangle a trip to Seoul this year (work, but with a personal agenda)
  • shopping - just a little bit, but in my defence, Polly Toynbee asks:
Is mass culture so deplorable? Shopping is the number one leisure activity - nothing wrong with that. A cornucopia of affordable pleasures invites the eye at Ikea. (It is mostly men who inveigh against retail therapy, but is sport any more elevating?)