Tuesday 31 July 2007

A Brutal Odyssey. An Outlaw Journalist.

Fear and Loathing in America: The Brutal Odyssey of an Outlaw Journalist 1968-1976. A collection of letters composed by a certain Hunter S Thompson. A quotation:

"Beer on whiskey, mighty risky - Whiskey on beer, never fear."

A wise man. The Good Doctor.

Regression

First, Nialler posts this picture with his very entertaining The Science of Sleep entry. A flood of nostalgia engulfs me as I gaze upon its majestic simplicity... The lift on mine was rubbish but the velocity of the dinky on the ramp was something to behold... The streams of petrol and dreams were endless...

I had barely regained my composure when I received a text from my mate Brian who runs a B&B (
The Old Anchor Inn, Annascaul, Co. Kerry)... None other than Don Conroy ate in his restaurant last night! With a kestrel perched on his arm no doubt... If only I could Draw With Don once more, I got the feeling that all might be well again.

Until I thought of this:




With that goal Toto, you tore asunder the dreams of a child.

You despicable little shit.

Monday 30 July 2007

A Letter From God (via Scroobius Pip)

Dan Le Sac Vs Scroobius Pip, the duo responsible for "Thou Shalt Always Kill", the unquestionable single of the year thus far... "A Letter From God", yet another quality Le Sac Vs Pip tune, a dexterous marriage of theological irreverence and Radiohead sample... The video, a simple yet effective fan composition by Ambee.


www.myspace.com/lesacvspip

www.myspace.com/ambeehimself

Ingmar Bergman RIP

Ingmar Bergman Dies At 89 - The Huffington Post.

Ingmar Bergman, the great Swedish filmmaker, died today at the age of 89. A most significant loss for the cinema. Through his consistently inventive technique and intelligently moralistic writing, Bergman more than any other used his medium to coldly analyse the limits and disappointment of human existence. Though his idiom was often claustrophobic and bleak, it was never less than riveting. Perhaps there will never be another to possess the impact of he.

By way of epitaph, The Knight's first encounter with Death in Bergman's most beloved The Seventh Seal:


Sunday 29 July 2007

We Live In A Stupid World


Warning: this warning is stupid - Matt Rudd, The Sunday Times.

The warning sign has become ubiquitous. The inane and self-explanatory are omnipresent. It is Supernanny meets Orwellian nightmare... This bin is for litter only? As opposed to what? Please give up the seat if a disabled person requires it? Fuck no, let Cripple Boy grovel. Slippery when wet? You don't say.

However Matt, you actually highlight the reason for the existence of these signs in your own article:

I do a quick survey: nearly all the plastic bags in the house warn of suffocation and two raise the grim possibility of baby strangulation. One has no warning at all, which seems brazen. I could, after all, sue.

Indeed you could Matt. And that is why these warning signs must continue to affront us so... The vast majority of people are not that stupid. However, many are that conniving and opportunistic. A sad but indisputable commentary on our times.

My favourite stupid sign ever?

ALMOND SLICES - WARNING: MAY CONTAIN NUTS.

Amazing.

A Galway Girl & The Donahue Sisters


I just saw this Geraldine Aron double bill the other night and I would highly recommend that you do the same. Two very enjoyable pieces of theatre... Witty and informed writing... A nuanced grasp of mood and tone, from subtle pathos to grand guignol... Perfectly pitched performances from all involved...

However, this is the last day of the show's run, so you shall need to make haste if you want to catch it. An advisable course of action.

Huzzah Zelig Theatre! Huzzah!

A Galway Girl & The Donahue Sisters plays the Town Hall Theatre Studio today at 3pm (€8) and 8.30pm (€12/10). Tickets can be purchased from the Town Hall Theatre or alternatively by phone on (091) 569777.

Saturday 28 July 2007

No Country For Old Men

All shall be well again, for the Coens have returned.



Via Graham Linehan's Hompendium of Dorithies

Friday 27 July 2007

Something(s) For The Weekend

As the weekend descends, be sure and think of JacksGraff... A new blog about graffiti in toilets. Tremendously now. Fair play Una, own that zeitgeist!



Also, a barbecue would be most sweet this weekend. It has been far too long. Yet the inherently shite weather means that a couch, some Coronas, and drunken gaming marathons are far more likely... If only there was some way to combine the two... Link.

Fox News Vs The Blogosphere

Fox Attacks...Bloggers - The Huffington Post.

Fox News is the most hysterical and malevolent broadcaster in the world. Bar none. In the past few months it has implied that Barack Obama is a terrorist, called black churches cults, and denied the existence of global warming... Really.

Now Fox News is having a go at the mainly liberal blogosphere... "Vicious" and "ridiculous", apparently. My favourite quote is without doubt: "Conservatives like to talk, and liberals like to type." What does that even mean? Watch the clip below for more inane ráiméis.


Thursday 26 July 2007

Daft Punk Unmasked

A tasty curiosity for you my friends... Thomas Bangalter et Guy Manuel De Homem-Christo sans robotic costume. A serious snippet of set this one. Decidedly pre-Homework and somewhat dated, but absolutely quality nonetheless. Le plaisir.

RTÉ You're A Bollocks


RTÉ's Charity You're A Star is back. And it promises to be worse than ever. Oh yes.

The judges for the current run of the show are Brendan O' Connor, Brian McFadden and Amanda Brunker... Three of the most detestable and vacuous arseholes ever to have congealed on Irish soil. For shame RTÉ, for shame. Christ, one almost feels nostalgic for the senile slithering of Lizard Martyn.

Competing on the show will be Twink's moustache, Joe Duffy's sense of righteous indignation, Gerry Ryan's diet pills, a TG4 weather presenter and a bag of cranky hammers.

And now may come the riposte; "Ah, sure it's for charity!" Charity eh? Can I ask you this then? On what slab of moral high ground do you balance yourself whilst crossing the road to avoid a chugger or two?

Bah humbug.

Wednesday 25 July 2007

Weird Vibrations (Via Youtube)

My friends, I am feeling rather ill today and so I offer you this inherently inconsequential and lazy post. Its premise is simple... These are two of the most bizarre youtube clips I have seen in quite a while...

First up, "Put The Lotion In The Basket". An ode to the peculiar psychosis of Silence Of The Lambs killer Buffalo Bill. So very wrong, yet so very catchy.

Secondly, a clip from 1944 MGM musical Broadway Rhythm. A triumvirate of contortionists - the Ross Sisters - perform a song and dance routine about the joys of potato salad. There is no adjective adequate...



A Conversation With A Bank Employee

"I'm sorry sir, but it says here that you cancelled your credit card yesterday."

"No. No, I didn't..."

Tuesday 24 July 2007

Mogwai Fear Un Chien Andalou

Luis Bunuel's Un chien andalou (1929)... Quite possibly the most intrinsically vital piece of surrealist cinema ever. A quixotic nightmare that continues to provoke and unsettle the viewer even today. A collection of symbols so willfully obtuse as to perpetually disallow cohesive semiotic analysis. A masterful exercise in the ultimate dominion of the image over narrative progression, as rendered by a skilled auteur... The slicing of an eye...

Don't believe the hyperbole? Below lies Un chien andalou. Do have a look. There is a twist however. This particular version is soundtracked by the ethereal augmentation of Mogwai's "Mogwai Fear Satan". Which rocks.

Drugs might help... I jest.

Monday 23 July 2007

Transformers - A Michael Bay Film

I would say spoiler alert but that would of course indicate that there was something to spoil. And so I present to you:

THE CONCLUSION OF MICHAEL BAY'S TRANSFORMERS - A MICHAEL BAY FILM.

Sam lifts some box and does something. He does so whilst standing near Megatron (the leader of the Decepticons). This causes Megatron to burn or explode and he dies/falls over. Optimus Prime (the good truck from outer space) lives/stands up. Bumblebee (some car from outer space) wants to be friends with Sam and stays on Planet Earth.

The girl is hot. She kisses Sam on the boot of Bumblebee (some car from outer space). Optimus Prime spouts some pseudo-philosophical shite to nobody in particular.

FADE TO INDIFFERENCE.

THE END.

Now follows my capsule review of Michael Bay's Transformers - A Michael Bay Film:

It is the cinematic equivalent of being raped by a bus.

Easily the worst film that I have ever seen.

Fuck you Michael Bay... Fuck you.

Friday 20 July 2007

Coerced Self-Assessment

Two days ago, Kevin Of Disillusioned Lefty tagged me. The gauntlet was thrown down and now he requires from me a list of eight interesting facts about myself. Being a man of honour, I must accept this challenge... Actually, it's no bother really. Arbitrary whims are The New(ish) Journalism's bag baby, yeah!
  1. I have written, directed, and produced a short film entitled First Day.
  2. A few years ago, a group of friends and I recorded an album entitled Urine Soaked Veranda. Think Tenacious D via A Flock Of Seagulls.
  3. I once courted a girl for three months and never knew her surname.
  4. I have played Wolfenstein 3D in a Catholic priest's house in Germany.
  5. I have a man crush on Dylan Moran.
  6. In no way can I stomach a full Irish breakfast after a night on the beer. The taste of the breakfast or the sickening cliché.
  7. I know I am a good kisser.
  8. I have been held at knife point by a Catalunyan pimp.

So there you go. John Trivia #1 (and only).

Tagging, in advance: Aoife Of The Indie Hour, Michael Of That's Ireland, Shane Of The Torture Garden, and Master Green Ink. Also, Una (definitely) Rocks, but I think she has already been tagged elsewhere. If I am wrong Una, please oblige!

How To Properly Occupy Prison Inmates

The Cebu Provincial Detention and Rehabilitation Center, Cebu, The Philippines... Activities Day... 1,500 plus inmates... A highly choreographed rehearsal... Michael Jackson's "Thriller"...

Similar thinking would almost certainly have saved Michael McDowell's political career. What a pity.

Thursday 19 July 2007

The Richard Dawkins Delusion


I am not at all religious. However, I am absolutely sick of people referencing Richard Dawkin's The God Delusion.

For the record... Reading this book does not make you intellectual. Reading this book does not make you an interesting conversationalist. Reading this book does not make you morally superior to those who have not done so. Reading and positively referencing this book simply means you are one of the many who have been won over by the vulgar self-regard and decidedly vague empirical techniques of Richard Dawkins.

Give the book time. It will eventually prove to be as ecclesiastically relevant as a Dan Brown novel.

Pic via www.b3ta.com. Where else?

Mark O' Halloran - Ennis Man


O'Halloran to open Dublin gay film fest - RTE.

Acclaimed gay writer and actor Mark O'Halloran will officially open GAZE: The 15th Dublin International Lesbian and Gay Film Festival, on Thursday 2 August. A highly warranted honour.

Adam & Paul is the only truly essential Irish film in the last twenty years... Garage was the main instigator of buzz at both Cannes and the Galway Film Fleadh... Mark O' Halloran, along with director Lenny Abrahamson, is one of the most vital voices in contemporary Irish cinema... Their characters exist within entirely fictional milieus, yet through the subtlety of their actions possess a consistently devastating relevance... The death of The Tall One anyone?

Huzzah Master O' Halloran! You do the township of Ennis proud!

Furthermore, I had a brief chat with him at the Galway Film Fleadh and he is a very sweet man.

Wednesday 18 July 2007

Australian AIDS

From 1987, an Australian TV advertisement warning all and sundry of the danger of AIDS... The fear mongering... The theatricality... The frankly bizarre choice of metaphor...

Nömadak Tx

The Txalaparta is a unique musical instrument. It is a percussion instrument played by two musicians. However, the music that arises from their encounter does not belong to either of them, but to the dialogues and encounters they have shared.

Nömadak Tx is a documentary that charts the particular journey of Igor Otxoa and Harkaitz Mtnez. de San Vicente, two Basque musicians who decided to fully utilise their Txalaparta as a meeting point. Not only as a meeting point between two individuals, but as a fulcrum between various cultures. Their Txalaparta was brought to some of the most remote places on the planet in search of distinct new sounds and voices... They lived amongst the Adivasi people of India, the Sami people of Laponia, with the people of the Mongol steppe and with the nomads of the Sahara.

Each encounter is unique and wonderful. Woven together in a delicate montage that should reinforce for any viewer the simplicities of basic human interaction. Lest you forget, we are all the same. We all like a good tune.

www.nomadaktx.com

Tuesday 17 July 2007

The Tundra As Awkward Metaphor & The Cessation Of The Fleadh

"But most of all... I did it the way I was told to do it!"

The votes have all been cast. The reels have all been wound. The whimsies have all been spun. The ales have all been quaffed... The shabby remnants of a human being stares blankly at his keyboard. Cognitive annihilation mocks his eagerness to achieve blogospheric relevance. His liver dances incoherently to the beat of the complimentary beer polka. Listless, tumultuous. A paradox born only out of barbecues in Connemara.... The end is here. At last.

The Galway Film Fleadh 2007 is no more. The craic was mighty. The Americans were confused. Black Sheep was amazing. Huzzah!

I leave you with these. Firstly, a promise that normal posting shall resume tomorrow. Secondly, a clip from The Mighty Boosh that is quite representative of my current state of mind... Saileóg, I know not how I fell asleep. Judge me not.


Saturday 14 July 2007

God Grew Tired Of Us



If at all possible, please see this film today at the Galway Film Fleadh:


Christopher Dillon Quinn's God Grew Tired Of Us - Town Hall Theatre - 17:00.

The director will be present for Q & A after the screening.

I have been informed by one of the festival's programmers that this documentary is easily one of the highlights this year. Trust him, he knows his stuff.

Furthermore, my apologies for the scant amount of posts this past week. I have been a very busy man. Alas, film festivals care not for the kind regards of blogospheric union. Or something.

Saturday 7 July 2007

Updates

I have received my ticket for Buck 65 and Messiah J & The Expert in Róisín Dubh.

I saw Tom Crean: Antarctic Explorer in the Town Hall Theatre last night and was blown away. Amazing performance.

I am booking my ticket for Black Sheep in the Galway Film Fleadh this afternoon. Dead excited about this one.

It is my friend's 24th birthday today. He has visibly aged in the past year.

Tomorrow morning I am getting a bus to Clifden to work on a documentary for three days.

When I return I shall be working as a volunteer for the 19th Galway Film Fleadh. The free t-shirt is a bit naff, but the programme is dead glossy and has that gorgeous new book smell.

Many attractive humans of the female persuasion are also volunteering. Le cinema, je t'aime!

Blogging may be sporadic over the next few days. However, I shall do my best.

Happy Live Earth!

Thursday 5 July 2007

"Am I not a teddy bear?"

This is a teddy bear that has been gutted and inverted for an exhibition entitled Kent Rogowski: Bears. Why would one willfully disfigure such an emblem of childhood innocence? Artist Kent Rogowski had this to say:

"Teddy bears are designed to be innocuous and non-threatening creatures. Inside-out the bears are still sometimes recognizable but are now much more complicated and contradictory. The seams of the bear now look like scars, and some bears lose their limbs and other appendages depending on how they were constructed. When you look at the inside-out bears they appear to have a history or a past. They no longer offer comfort but instead seem to want our empathy."

Iconoclastic brilliance.

I want one.

Via Boing Boing.

The Diary Of A Madman


Nikolai Gogol's The Diary Of A Madman is one of the funniest stories I have read in quite some time. Hopelessly romantic, it is an entertaining blend of subtle comedy and quixotic delusion. An insightful parody exposing the incessant stupidity and meanness of modern life. Written by a man who died in 1852.

And as the callous rain continues unabated, a particular excerpt slowly begins to unravel in my mind. Is there a peculiar logic to these words?

Apart from all this, I’m very annoyed by an event that’s due to take place at 7 o’clock tomorrow. A strange phenomenon: the earth is going to land on the moon. An account of this has been written by the celebrated English chemist Wellington.

I confess I feel deeply troubled when I consider how unusually delicate and insubstantial the moon is. The moon, as everyone knows, is usually made in Hamburg, and they make a complete hash of it. I’m surprised that the English don’t do something about it. The moon is manufactured by a lame cooper, and it’s obvious the idiot has no idea what it should be made of. The materials he uses are tarred rope and linseed oil. That’s why there’s such a terrible stink all over the earth, which makes us stop our noses up. And that's why the Moon itself is such a delicate ball that men cannot live there - only noses. And that's why we can't see our own noses: they are all on the Moon.

A man needs to get out. A man needs to get a haircut and buy new trainers. Alas, avec les downpours, it simply cannot be. So the mind meanders.

I cannot explain the Ozzy picture. Funny?

Win A Free T-Shirt!


Clickez-vous, s'il vous plait: I want a t-shirt.

Wednesday 4 July 2007

The Revenge of The Trousersnake

Timberlake and 50 Cent record ode to porn - Breaking News.

Justin Timberlake and 50 Cent have teamed up on record to rap and sing about their love of pornography. The song is about falling in love with a porn star and it is called "Ayo Technology". The song shall be 50's next single. During the song Timberlake sings the following risqué line:

"I'm tired of using technology, why don't you sit down on top of me."

Dear Lord, whatever will JT do next? First he throws strawberries and ping pong balls at defenceless Swedes. Now this... He is just such a rebel. And that immaculate designer stubble... Grrr.

As a matter of interest, does anybody else find it hilariously fitting that a gangsta who promotes a vitamin drink and the former lead singer of 'N Sync have recorded a song that is essentially about masturbation?

I wonder what Master Scroobius would say.

Dan Le Sac Vs Scroobius Pip

"Thou Shalt Always Kill" by Dan Le Sac Vs Scroobius Pip... Unquestionably the single of the year... Hilarious urban polemic... A righteous rhyme invective; presented to the yoof of today as the only relevant guide to savvy living. Ostensibly hip hop, this track nevertheless possesses a range and depth that ultimately transcends genre. Scroobius directs one accusation at 50 Cent and his posse(s) though:

"Thou shalt remember that guns, bitches, and bling were never part of the four elements... And never will be."

Yes, to paraphrase the poetry of Scroobius, Dan Le Sac Vs Scroobius Pip are just a band. However, precious few bands around today demand attention on such an unequivocal level. So fuck Pop Idol, fuck NME, fuck repetitive generic music... Embrace these two. Embrace a visceral new strand of hip-hop/poetry that never fails to impress.

Other Le Sac Vs Pip tracks of note are "Live" and "Angles", both located on their myspace:

www.myspace.com/lesacvspip

Happy Fourth Of July!

To paraphrase The Ramones... I'll be glad to see you go George. Peace.

Tuesday 3 July 2007

The Irish Independent Is Total Bollocks

IRELAND'S MOST STYLISH 2007.

The 198 most chic people, places and things in Ireland this summer.

This was the cover feature of the most recent Sunday Independent LIFE supplement. Of course, the list was a compilation of the most vacuous rubbish imaginable. However, it did provide some useful bullet points for anybody caring to argue for the immediate cessation of this utterly useless newspaper... How misguided can some people be? Very much so, it would seem.

Some random examples from their compilation of festive ineptitude:

17. KATY FRENCH.

This is what the Sindo had to say about the French: "There are no limits to the talents of this multitasking modern miracle." Fuck me. That is perhaps the least sensible sentence ever written. In any language. Ever.

30. TRUE SMOOTHIES.

"The homemade smoothie can have the character of mushy warm fruit and none of the slightly icy panache of the shop bought drink. Thanks to Corrin Hill's new tubs of frozen yogurt, however, you can recreate that true smoothie mouth-feel at home."

In other words... You can simply buy some fruit and frozen yogurt. Then put them in a fridge or freezer, thereby making them cold. Imagine. Then you blend them, while they are cold. Wow. And then you drink the blended fruit and yogurt - the 'smoothie' - while it is cold. Amazing. You can also add ice to the mixture afterwards, thereby making it even colder. Gasp... Jesus, have soccer moms and IT girls really become this fucking stupid?

46. MANIC STREET PREACHERS 'SEND AWAY THE TIGERS'.

Sorry, but on what planet are the Welsh whingers even remotely relevant anymore? Political pub rock endorsed by Ray D'Arcy and his ever chipper Today FM posse... Futile.

57. SWIMWEAR FOR REAL WOMEN.

As opposed to swimwear for androgynous unicorns? Posh Spice is actually a real person folks. She is just too thin and has hilarious implants. There is a subtle difference.

65. XPOSE.

"There's no denying our insatiable appetite for all things celebrity and TV3 has cleverly tapped into that. The women can swoon over the style, while the men can do the same over the totty."

What totty?

146. STYLE MANUAL.

Ross O' Carroll-Kelly's Guide To South Dublin: How To Get By On, Like, €10,000 A Day.

Fucking hell, Paul Howard has really milked this one, wha? Yes, a lot of Southsiders are preening materialistic idiots. Krystle and Lillies, birds, rugby, Mercs... Har, har, har... Move on. Author and readership. Please.

159. JOHN O' DONOGHUE.

"Former Minister For Fun."

Wankers. Both him and you Sindo. Both him and you.


So, there you have it. A compendious selection from the 198 mentioned in this absolutely fabulous feature. I could have selected many more examples, but the mind numbing tedium had just become too much. My apologies.

The Irish Independent: a 'broadsheet' staffed entirely by thesaurus wielding tabloid journalists/shitehawks with a collective penchant for irrelevance.

The Irish Independent: the employer of both Kevin Myers and Ian O' Doherty.

Enough said.

"Who needs the Kwik-E-Mart!"


Some guy in marketing must have creamed his pants when he came up with this whopper. As part of a promotion for the upcoming Simpsons movie, 7-Eleven have turned a dozen of its stores into Kwik-E-Marts. These revamped stores will also be selling items which had previously only been seen on the TV show, like Squishees and Krusty brand cereals. There is a whole flickr photoset of one of the branches which you can check out by clicking [Here].

It is marketing gone mad; synergy taken to a decidedly American extreme. One should bemoan the cynicism behind it all. Yet, alas, one cannot. This is just too cool.

Electric Picnic: An Appeal


These two are my friends. They shall remain anonymous. The New(ish) Journalism takes this opportunity to make an appeal to you dear readers...

If you know anybody who is trying to sell an Electric Picnic ticket (preferably genuine), then drop me a comment or an email. You see, both of these darling youngsters are currently without EP tickets and would like ever so much to attend the festival.

Please. Just two tickets this summer could forever change the lives of these plucky fellows. They need not suffer so.

To see how your generosity could make a difference, check out this tasty little link: The Primavera Experience

Monday 2 July 2007

Everything You Need To Know About Somebody (?)

It came to me amidst a haze of Corona, Buckfast (?) and misplaced self-confidence. It would have a Saturday night like any other but for this tremendous epiphany... Everything you really need to know about somebody can be learnt by simply asking these two questions:

  • Who would you get to play the part of you in the movie of your life?

  • If you could pick your own theme music, what would it be?

Armed with this effortless insight into the complexities of the human condition, I briefly wandered around the night club asking all and sundry. Some were receptive and thankful for my wisdom. Other answers ranged from "Wha?" to "Fuck off!" However, through the flagrant ignorance of these plebs I had already learnt enough.

With the benefit of hindsight it is now clear to me that perhaps the questions do not drip with the perception I had first assumed of them. Nevertheless, they are a laugh all the same. So this Monday I ask of you a small favour... An answer to both questions.

Let me in. Please.

P.S. Fuelled by said misplaced self-confidence, my answers on Saturday were (a) emo Tobey Maguire from Spiderman 3 and (b) the Countdown theme music. Allow me to give it some more thought and I shall soon post answers of a more genuine persuasion. Out.