Thursday, December 24, 2009

Day Twenty Blinkin' Four - "Twoots" (Tweets and Hoots, you see)

Well look at that! The end of Further Advents 2009! Okay so I missed a few days here and there along the way.. SUE ELLEN ME.

All that remains is to wish you all a very, very Merry Christmas. I honestly hope you have a brilliant one, you lovely people.*

I'll probably muster up some kind of 'this was 2009' type post in the course of the next week. But for now, I wanted to shamelessly nick stuff from that other place - whisper it! - Twitter, for my final Further Advents post. It'll probably have been replaced by something else by this time next year, and I don't trust twitter with some of my favourites, you see, so they need to be recorded for posterity somewhere.

I realise this is bit like reading them out into a cassette recorder.


So, here are some of the best Tweets I've seen in the last twelve months. I would link to the author's Twitter account. Only I can't be arsed, you see. And no I haven't put the date and time of each tweet, but they are in reverse order, from now back to January.

It's all very fly-on-the-slice-of-life here today, you see.

Here we go now, 2009 - A YEAR IN TWEETS:

@sueperkins Pamela Anderson and Vivienne Westwood; the yin and yang of skin tone...

@patroclus Trying Google Wave again. It's like the internet imagined by Chris Morris. "To read through unread blips in a wave, hit the spacebar." What?

@annapickard Phoning boyfriend (currently in Suffolk) to find out if he knows where my shoes (currently within a 10m radius of me in San Francisco) are.

@EmmaK67 Zoe Lucker looks like a pregnancy testing kit

@caitlinmoran CRISIS! Watched first 4 eps of Criminal Justice at the weekend = brilliant. Just watched the last one now and it's a bit ... meh. Noooo ....

Apart from ANYTHING ELSE, I'm 600 words into calling it the best drama of the year. I'm going to have to do some sharp cornering tomorrow

Two wheels off the ground, airbags inflating, screeching brakes, kids crying in the back, etc. "MUMMY'S REVERSING A REVIEW!"

@DerrenBrown Just spent 5 mins looking for my slippers to find I was wearing them. Don't tell anyone, it doesn't fit the brand at any level.

@caitlinmoran Just had a coffee so strong, all I can do for the next hour is sit on this chair and scream like Bacon's Pope Innocent X

@OyeBilly In 1984 I was hospitalised for approaching perfection.

@RealBoswell Am Packing for London TRIPPE: Flintlock, Bible, and loading iPod with Greatest Speeches of Lord BUTE. Also Shortbread for DEMPSTER.

@BDooley I just caught a few minutes of Loose Women while looking for the remote. Emmeline Pankhurst must wonder why she bothered.

@patroclus I realise that 'the poshest house in Penryn' is a bit like saying 'the most expensive item on the McDonald's menu'.

@caitlinmoran Contrary to everything I'd believed before, it turns out that drinking until 5.28am is a terrible idea.Literally re-writing my own rule book.

The rule book entitled "What The Fuck, Blarp, There's Definitely A Bottle of Rose In The Crisp Cupboard, Let's Dance!", published 1993

@caitlinmoran When I watched Home Alone aged eight, I rooted for the kid's inventiveness, and nerve. Now, at 34, I just see Joe Pesci's osteopath bills.

@geoffwetblanket Just bought Simian Mobile Disco & Calvin Harris CDs. I am 47.

@caitlinmoran It's now nine days since Simon Schama friended me on Facebook, and we've still not hit the clubs and got messy. No shots. No Lucky Voice.

@bobbyllew My dreadful son is saying, 'The MacBook air is not as thin as they say it is.' How can he be so cruel?

@bebopboy dear apple, if you get a spare moment, would you be a dear and buy and knock into shape adobe's apps. someone's got to do it. thanks a mil!

@caitlinmoran A re-Tweet from Maggie Philbin! *air punch*

@delrico had no idea how many of my Twitter friends worked in Soho til someone decided to burn it down. I'm only up the road in smoke free Noho!

@BDooley I have returned from Hot, where I had a case of Legs.

@mermhart Just walked past a horse. It looked at me then farted. I farted back.

@bebopboy are hotel websites the last hold-outs of flash intro screens? it's 2009 - stop it at once

@calvinharris Well I've never done a gig with my house keys in my pocket before.

@IanMartin My Dansette was made in 1963. The 21st Century can fucking EAT MY STYLUS. 'Sound'? I've got ON/OFF & extra treble if you leave the lid up.

@NotTinyFey Oh you kids these days. I can't tell which one is a hipster and which one's a hobo. You're all wearing beards, plaid, and riding a bike.

@BettyUtility Hmm, Diversity on BGT appear to feature a miniature Zadie Smith ...

@BeBopBoy attempting to make dinner for six tonight. on the menu: mild panic, arm flapping and a side of pans crashing

@emilybell My mum would like to be digitally included, but she would prefer a hip replacement #digitalbritain

@patroclus Trench update: mother-in-law issued instructions for it, husband dug it, I admired it, baby ignored it, father-in-law fell into it.

@james_blue_cat Got married, had pasty xx all.

@LeighHolmwood Have had to de-follow Carol McGiffin. Couldn't bear it any longer

And finally, quite literally my favourite of the year:

@emilybell LEAVE HIM CHERYL! sorry - got carried away #brits

In short: I hearts Caitlin Moran** and some other peoples. Oh dear. SYCHOPHANCY R US.

Also, I am now alone in the office crying with laughter at my desk. Oh dear again.

Phew! Settle back in the holiday, Blogosphere, and have an amazing Christmas.

* Apart from the spammers. Obvs.

** Catch her now, before she vanishes behind a pay wall!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Day Twenty Two - A Plea

Today's advent contains nothing more than my heartfelt plea to ignore every piece of advice found in this piece.*

Get over this one as well, while you're there.

I'll be stuffing myself silly, until I have sprouts coming out of my ears. Because it's traditional.**


* I know. The DM. Sozza.

** This sounds pretty selfish since there are people starving in the world, I know. But it continues in the vein of my long-running campaign that food is once of the last pleasures humanity has. Enjoy it while you can.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Day Twenty One - Cake!

From possibly the most brightly coloured shop in the world.

Still. Helps Monday pass deliciously.*

* Where did all this work come from? It's supposed to be quiet this week, n'ah?!

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Day, Er, Twentine - "Stuff"

Everyone should read this. Good reminder of the junk science we've been fed this year. Go Goldacre!

And for no reason other than it was on the same page this piece took my fancy. Where's a flashmob of painters led by Hannah Gordon when you need one!?

And an extra dose of "Oh I say!" as I missed yesterday.

I'm drowning in red wine. Someone please help.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Day Seventeen - all decked out

We decorated the flat last night.

The Christmas tree me and my flatmate have is adorned with some very tasty but sparingly-used Habitat baubles. V classy, like.

But further upwards, the tree has a touch of Doctor Who about it...

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Day Fifteen - The Letter X

I'd type some copy here, only I'm too busy drooling... arggllllgghgglll....

Monday, December 14, 2009

Day Fourteen - Just Utter Brilliance

While I was perusing the weekend papers - pain au chocolat in hand, sophisticated Radio 4 chit-chat on the background, a mere hint of Monster Munch flavouring the air - I saw this very interesting article. It explores the idea that toys and stuff for little girls has become overwrought with sugar, spice and all that's nice. Well, pink mainly. I can see their point. There's nothing wrong with little girls liking girly stuff, if that's their desire, but not everything has to be lurid pink, right?

Anyway, the point was the piece was illustrated by one of the most awesome poster adverts I have ever seen. T'is found here.

How totally cool and awesome is that little girl??!

And them. And these two.

Brilliant! Totally makes me think of my childhood. And my older sister.

I'll say it again. Lego was one of my best toys EVER. My youngest nephew is just getting into it, and I'm proud to say that some of his huge pile comes from my stuff and my sister's. Which means some of it is over thirty five years old. How's that for longevity!?

This Christmas I shall mostly be looking forward to making some Lego sets becauseofcoursehecan'tdoitsowhydoesn;tUncleBozjusthelpyououttherehmm?


Sunday, December 13, 2009

Day Thirteen - Shall we wait for vicar..?

Another inspired piece of nostalgic advertising c/o TV Cream and TV Ark.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Day Twelve - Gentleman Rhyming

I don't listen to much Radio 6, but I caught a bit last night and something came on which totally fired up my Amazingness Alert.


Gentleman rapping!

Ladies and gents, may I present, the awesome sonic stylings of Mr.B (Gentleman Rhymer):

And there's a Christmas song to download free at his MySpace site (check out I Say, You! while you're there).



Found the link on iPlayer to the BBC 6 show. It's here for a limited time only, refunds not available etc etc... check out 48 minutes in...

Friday, December 11, 2009

Day Eleven - Obscura

This has been something of a busy week at work, with lots of traipsing to and from meetings across town. Quite satisfying to get a lot done though. But it does feel like I've lost touch a bit with everything else - and I certainly haven't had any time to sit and just *be still*.

Also, it being the season, my liver is working at full capacity. She cannae take much more cap'n. And the alcohol is playing havoc with my emotional state. Last night I almost burst into tears twice at the theatre.

And now for something completely irrelevant; a selection of random pictures from my iPhone:

There we are then.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Day ten - continuing yesterday's theme...

It's only funny because it's true.

What's that about a fine line between comedy and tragedy..?

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Day Nine - the ghost of Christmas past..

I used to be retail bitch. A checkout Charlie. A stockroom stooge.

All these things and yet more. I won't say exactly where.* But during Uni, and a couple of years after Uni I worked in retail, which included the Christmas period.

I am in no way getting snobby. Everyone does jobs like this, at any stage of life, that may not exactly their dream career, and those who haven't should do. It's like a kind of national service, where you're forced to experience the business end of the Great British Public for a few years to really SEE what we're like. Anita Roddick once said "show me someone with a deep loathing for all humanity, and I'll show you someone who works in retail" and she really wasn't just whistling dixie.

I have some awesome memories of those jobs. Mostly about the other people and the drinking because quite often we were all bored to tears, but it taught me stuff I still use in day-to-day life and my work today. So ner. Yes, I know I sound like I'm about to say "what you need is a bloody good war". But sometimes that's a little what it felt like.

Especially at Christmas.

So for today's advent, let's all take a few moments and spare a thought for the good people of retail who are generally Making Our Christmas Happen For Us. The bar people, the supermarket bods and all the people we hand cash to in return for some things we give to other people.

Because it's not a great time of year for them. Working right up to Christmas Eve setting up stuff for the sales after the shop closes, and being back in on Boxing Day doesn't leave much time for stuff with family or friends.** The hours are long, the pay is usually fairly rubbish and sometimes it can be another form of care in the community for the regular customers.

Ages I shoved on here my "light-hearted" guide to Christmas shopping, but please spare a thought for the person who's helping you shop. Not only are there millions of us, we're quite grumpy and demanding. And we hate queues. And we'll get in a right tizz if that store doesn't happen to have the plates in the right colour, or this dress in the right size. trust me on this. I had people spit at me.***

What's more, by this time of year they are already note perfect on the Christmas CD that's been sent by Head Office that year. And never, ever, want to hear any of it again. It's never the the good Christmas music, it's always, always some disco version of Little Donkey that was released in 1973.

So, take a moment and say a nice thanks to the next person that helps you out with something for Christmas. G'waan.****

* Happy Holidays! Would you like a gift receipt or gift box with that turtle neck jumper?

** I have never understood this country's obsession with getting up early and going shopping the day after Christmas. Are we, like, mad? There's telly on. And more food. And fami.. ohIseeeee.

*** And old ladies throw handbags at you before flashing you.

**** Even you smug types that have "finished" all your Christmas shopping. You still have food shopping or something to do.

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Day Eight - Cok!

No, nothing like that behind this blog-door, thank you.*

This kind of Cok.

(c/o Bertie Deane.)**

* Mind you, let's not rule anything out once we open the festive sherry, what?

** What do you mean, "I'm just raiding my Twitter favourites for stuff to bung up on the internets?" This is carefully selected, hand-crafted blog material from the finest purveyors, I shall have you know. Quality posts, honestly priced.***

*** IE, free.****

**** I have reached the point where the footnotes are bigger than the post. I think I may be in web-nirvana.

Sunday, December 06, 2009

Day six - ehhrrm, summery music...

We'll just move right along and forget about day five, shall we? Shall we lets? Hokay then.*

So. Advent day six. I'm not encouraging you to go and spend money, but this is very good.

You can have a bit of a listen here and also here.


And now back to Sunday.

* Abject, abject failure of the exercise...

Friday, December 04, 2009

Day Four. Over-excitement.

You know how some Decembers you really feel Christmas, and others you don't?

This year I am really feeling Christmas. By the time the actual thing comes around I could well be a gibbering, shaking wreck of tinsel, wrapping paper and fairy lights.* I'm very much in danger of boring people a bit, I think.

I'm already so excited I actually baked actual mince** pies this week. Actual. Mince. Pies. And they weren't bad either.***

So today's advent is the recipe for, that's right folks, mince pies. I found this on the intermawebs c/o the lovely BBC here.

I'm sure I'm not the only one champing at the Christmas bit, either. It's been a rubbish year for a lot of people, for a lot of reasons. I think everyone needs an excuse to have some fun.

I shall stop there, for fear of turning my diatribe into that of an elderly and well-meaning parish vicar..

Mince on!

* And that's before the parental homemade wine comes out.
*** Okay the second batch weren't bad. The first were.. a touch crispy.

Thursday, December 03, 2009

Day Three and already we're stealing YouTube clips

Weeeellllllll it was only a matter time before some YouTube goodness popped up. And I'm shamelessly stealing from another adventy-themed undertaking form the spankingly marvellous TV Cream.

Some 1980s' Christmas telly adverts? Oh I think so.

(Personally, I think that Mandate one looks a bit, well, assault-ish, if you ask me. Also I think we've found out what the Oxo mum has been doing when that family finally get out of the house.)

Muppets on Christmas? Go on then.

(originals are here and here and really you should also be following TV Cream on Twitter).

Tia Maria, anyone?

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

But on the second day there were two discoveries

Two revelations for the second day of "festive" blogging:

1. Kylie Auldist (who I have my flatmate to thank for). Check out Ship in a Bottle on her myspace page. Or if you're fancy you can spotify her*.

2. It turns out I'm not the 30x32 trouser size I thought I was (or was certain I was a decade ago). I's a 32x30! I'm actually shrinking and expanding! This may explain the technical problems I have been having when buying jeans.

I know. Do try and carry on as normal after the shock.

Yes I know they are neither of them festive. What do you want to me to do? Say it with tinsel!? "TINSEL".

* I don't quite understand spotify yet. I'm sure I will. I'm a Last.FM bod you see - come friend me up!

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

On the first day of Christmas... true parents gave to me, a big pile of crap belonging to me!

I'm not kidding. My dad took me to visit my Gran this weekend. Mother phoned me a few days before hand to ask if it was alright if he dropped off one or two books of mine that were still at my parents place.

Of course not, I said.

Foolish, foolish error.

Turns out that "a few books" equates to six boxes, seven bags and my parents rubbing their hands with glee. I am literally surrounded by tat and toot. My bed is marooned in a sea of cardboard.

I have NO idea where I'm going to put this stuff. Books, children's books, old toys, school uniforms, exercise books, a disco ball, LPs... it goes on. Oxfam and Save The Children on Clapham High Street are going to get a sizeable chunk, I reckon. It's time to say goodbye to a few things.

The posters are worth a special mention. Some awesome Tim Hunkin ones I wouldn't mind seeing framed, but a whole LOT of 90's music posters. Mostly free ones that came with Select. Ash, Sleeper, Boo Radleys, Oasis... am I too old to put

Don't blame the parents though. They live in a tiny wee place, and my stuff cluttering up their space is most unfair. It's going to be interesting sorting out the stuff here where I live, rather than under their roof. Some tough decisions will be made.

And now to Freecycle, to try and find some shelves...


I'm two boxes in and already have genuine fear. Turns out keeping everything I've ever been given and everything anyone ever sent me may not have been such a tip-top idea. People, I'm a hoarder...


I thought I'd unpack all the books, to see if I can group them together and just sort of see where I am. Unfortunately it turns out there where I am is surrounded by piles of books and having a small nervous breakdown.