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Some time ago a newspaper article - probably in the Manchester Guardian - mentioned Stewart Lee's book "How I escaped my certain fate", which I've just finished. Rather fine it is, too. Partly it's about his life and the progress of his career during the nineties, until it faltered rather at the end of the decade, then his involvement with Jerry Springer - The Opera in the early years of this century and how his his career recovered and developed afterwards. This is interesting enough in itself for what he has to say about comedy, and I should really go back through it and note all the comics he recommends for future reference, but it also includes three sections which are transcripts of his stand-up sets with extensive footnotes commenting on, expanding on, and on occasions apologising for, what he was saying. The material still had me holding my sides (which could be viewed as a drawback, he points out - shouldn't stand-up be trying to do things that don't work equally well written down?) but the commentary adds a lot. It's worth the price of admission on its own, I'd say.

In other book-related news, I've lent Charlotte my copy of Quite Ugly One Morning. I could tell by the delighted laughter the point when she encountered The Jobby.
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The highlight of the day is when the BBC engineer, who has no idea who Albini is - thinking he is just our pal invited along to give a second opinion - commends the American on his technical proficiency, asking if he has ever considered a career in the recording industry.

Yes, I've just finished Luke Haines' book Bad Vibes, and very good it is too. He's just as acerbic as you'd expect from the records, although he does occasionally and grudgingly concede that a few people aren't actually as worthless as he'd believed from their work . . . and it turns out there are a number of people he likes and admires. He also manages to phrase this in ways that don't leave it being too much of a disappointment.

In other news, Beltane went percussively and is now descending into its periodic fit of navelgazing, Anna Calvi's album's very good and people are worrying too much about the lack of AV, which everyone campaigning for would by now be wanting to replace with STV anyway.

Haines claims, incidentally, that during the week before Lady Di's funeral (the time when I wrote A Certain Email) Albini gave him a present. Two presents, in fact - a copy of Candle In The Wind, and a shiny new hammer.
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Saw this nice post from [livejournal.com profile] solipsistnation last night. Laughed. Particularly recommended for roleplayers, airsofters, and anyone else childishly militaristic.

Also . . . Illuminati, anyone?

Later: Oh, also . . .
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Many thanks (well, many somethings) to the BBC for reporting this fantastic event at the Belfast Film Festival. Its title, above, literally reads "Shockingly Spoken Over Smut", and of course means "badly dubbed porn".

In this case, dubbed into Ulster Scots.

And the film?

Flesh Gordon. As well-remembered, I'm sure, by anyone who used to go to The Calling at the Q Club.

Three local comedians are to provide a live translation of the 1974 R-rated film.

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Thanks to [livejournal.com profile] seventorches for passing this on to me.

I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of
America, and to the republic for which it stands, one nation, under God,
indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.

. . . is an anagram of . . .

I, George W. Bush, an evil Republican fascist, used God to
inflict pain on the world, end life, facilitate death, create militant
jihad rebels, and to let youths die for nothing.

Some people have too much time on their hands.
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There are, of course, two actually good christmas records out, and it's not quite too late for you to rush out, buy about a dozen copies each, and propel them via a great big boot to the arse all the way up the hit parade to the very top.

Christmas Number One, by the Black Arts (being, of course, a collaboration between Black Box Recorder and Art Brut), is a cautionary tale about the effects of having a big hit.

We're all going to die by Malcom "cheery bugger" Middleton is actually quite a bouncy little number . . . for a song about the fact that we're all going to die.

Not for sale, but running those two very close in excellence terms, is Nine Inch Nöels, which I commend to you all most highly. Probably roughly what you'd expect.
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Steve Bell's good today.

There's also a profile of Shane McGowan:

His girlfriend, Victoria Mary Clarke, was once called to his house to find blood gushing from his mouth after he had tried to eat volume three of The Beach Boys' greatest hits.

"[Shane] had become convinced that the third world war was taking place and that he, as the leader of the Irish republic, was holding a summit meeting in his kitchen between the heads of state of the world superpowers, Russia, China, America and Ireland," she wrote in the Guardian. "In order to demonstrate the cultural inferiority of the United States, he was eating a Beach Boys album."

Let's see Motley Cruet top that. Please.


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