Saturday, August 22, 2009


I am sitting in a mobile phone droppage hot spot. I got a new phone last week, and the fact that it is scratch free pleases me. I get it out of my pocket and check the time. It's eleven thirty. Nice shiny phone. 

I'm sat on a park bench in Hove reading today's paper. My phone slithers out of my pocket and falls between the slats of the seat, hitting the concrete beneath with a ttthunk. I get up to retrieve it, scattering change across the pavement as I do it. I sit back down. 


I look up. A man walking by has dropped his phone. It doesn't bounce, but it immediately starts skidding across the paving towards a drain. He is quick, though - he scoops down to save it, smiling. He is a man of good humour. Self consciously I pat the phone in my own pocket. 


This one does bounce. I'm frankly astounded to see, moments later, a teenage girl with large-framed glass drop her mobile a couple of yards further along the path. The three points, if marked out, would form a pretty exact equilateral triangle. I furrow my brow and muse on this. Some sort of electro-magnetic dissonance in the area? Do people just drop their phones all the time?

I remove my mobile from my pocket - carefully - and take a good look at it. It has a scuff mark, like a small white bruise, on it's flank, and another further up at the top corner. 

I squint at it, trying to work out if I'm bothered. Then I move seats. 

Friday, August 21, 2009

usain bolt

I have to admit that, while I massively admire the achievement, and quite enjoyed watching Usain Bolt romp home when I saw it repeated on the news, I'm really not very interested at all in Athletics. Racing, in all its forms, has never appealed to me (I think the Tour De France is about the only race I could enjoy watching). That said, I've swiftly developed an affection for Mr. Bolt. Particularly on reading his quotes from after last night's demolition of his own 200m record. I like following the progression of his thoughts.

"Not mentally, physically it was harder because I wasn't in the best of shape. The rounds took a lot out of me this time. I just want to go home and sleep. It definitely means a lot because I showed people that last year wasn't a joke. I went through some problems this season but I came out here and I showed the world with hard work and dedication what is possible."

He added: "I definitely came here trying to double. Now I'm double world champion, I'm double Olympic champion so I have to defend my titles. If Queen Elizabeth knighted me would I get the title 'Sir Usain Bolt?' That sounds very nice."

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

i'm in love

Ladies and gentlemen, I give you Democratic Congressman Barney Frank...

Michael Tomasky, over on the Guardian, sums this up well...

tyson's mansion

This is really good; courtesy of GromBlog - the following two links are photo albums of Mike Tyson's abandoned mansion. Really interesting.

Take a look:
Link 1: Tyson's Mansion
Link 2: Tyson pt 2

Scroll right to cycle through the albums...

glenn beck

A question for my American readers:

I may have this wrong, as I'm not exactly a seasoned watcher of US TV, living as I do in the UK, but over the last four or five years I've travelled over to the US a number of times and always tuned in to cable news channels to see how things are presented. It was always my observation, when Glenn Beck presented on CNN headline, that he was generally more careful, less dogmatic and less offensive than his peers on Fox. I even found him reasonably likeable, although I seldom agreed with his politics. Nevertheless, he seemed to be relatively straight-talking, willing to criticise Bush, and while egotistical, a far way from being crazy.

Obviously, since he moved to Fox, he's gone absolutely batshit crazy. So my question is: did I just catch him on a good day on the occasions I tuned in to CNN over the least few years (probably not more than 12-20 times) or has his craziness only really kicked in the last year or so?

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

currently listening

1. Bibio - Ambivalence Avenue LP
2. Delorean - Ayrton Senna EP
3. The Antlers - Hospice LP
4. Yacht - See Mystery Lights LP
5. Dirty Projectors - Bitte Orca LP

Ah, not really. The above are all hip albums I've read about on the web in the last week or two. Out of a vague sense of duty, I downloaded 'em. But I can't really be bothered to listen to any of them. Here's what I'm really listening to.

1. Blur
2. Old mp3s of the Adam & Joe show.
3. The new Noah and the Whale LP
4. Music from John Hughes films
5. Radio 4?

I realise that this feature works better when I'm motivated to listen to music. Having a dry patch at the moment, clearly.

good grief

Silvio Berulusconi has come out in favour of a salary cap in football, saying that the high wages earned by professional footballers "are unacceptable, distant from the real economy in which we live in a difficult time like this. They are outside every parameter."

Be honest. Of all the people you would have expected to have made a moral stand against capitalist excess, Berlusconi would not be high on the list.

Friday, August 14, 2009

a song on the shoreline

Funny how after years of living in Brighton, myself and a bunch of friends have started falling in love with the sea all over again. We've mostly been going down there at low tide, admiring the beauty of our horizon, the city's vista, and the fading skeleton of our old Pier. I've been taking photos and writing - the results of which will be posted here shortly. Dan, who is fast developing his movie-making skills, has been shooting video and editing things together. Here, then, is a short film he's made to accompany a song by Hauschka. It captures something still, and beautiful, and fleeting, about our city's shoreline.

Visit Dan's YouTube channel here.