Friday, December 19, 2003

Right then, no more (paid) work 'til 29th December, so you're reading a very happy Dead Kenny just now. Have been taking it easy today, which started off with watching the final show of RI:SE, which got by without too much controversy (except for Iain Lee's cruel dig about Pop Idol finallist Michelle McManus' size: 'apparently, [she's] a special events co-ordinator...I should think the biggest event she's had to co-ordinate is hauling her fat arse out of bed in the morning') and finished with a mass 'pile-on' with Kate Lawler underneath (and Dougie Anderson taking the opportunity to grope Zora Sulaman's bum). I'm going to miss it, if nobody else will. Watching a reality show where people get their hair cut is going to be a barber-ous replacement.

Apart from that, popped out to the shops to wrestle with some senior citizens over the last decent lamb chops in the supermarket, as well as buy The Guardian which supplied the following links -

Cartoon: Steve Bell on The Home Secretary's Anti-Terrorism Bill.

Steven Wells' Sport Awards (not recommended for Leeds fans with a sensitive disposition).

My year: Rigobert Song. Cameroon's soccer skipper (and former Liverpool and West Ham player) reflects back on a year dominated by the terribly tragic death of team-mate (and fellow former Hammer) Marc-Vivien Foe during an interenational game in the summer.

Talking of the Guardian I've also found out via Casino Avenue that the winners to that weblog competition have been announced. Congratulations then to Belle De Jour (the 500 quid probably wouldn't cover the cost of a quick knee-trembler, but hey, at this time of year, it's the thought that counts) and Darren (who wins a lifetime achievement award for most links ever to the Guardian website - just kidding Darren, he writes, mindful of the glass-house scenario) who are amongst the winners.

In case you're wondering, Parallax View again declined to partake in this particular jamboree, partly because it seems a bit tedious, meretricious and unnnecessary (validation from an inky, however liberal, should be the last thing sought by an online diarist, surely - and I'm not sure I'm that keen on the medium being flooded by wannabe journos) but mainly because I'm rather keen on hanging on to the meagre income currently afforded me by my present employers. The Guardian have been keen to emphasise this year that they don't seek to compromise anyone's anonymity, and to prove their point give a shout out to Call Centre Confidential as well as Belle de Jour. Now, while everyone's favourite blogging call-girl is invariably very sweet in her depictions of her clientbase, the callcentre manager is savage in his/her disparaging comments on his/her staff (one is nicknamed 'Thrush' for example, because he is 'an irritating cunt'). Although the name and location of the callcentre are undisclosed, the increased exposure of the Guardian competition significantly increases the possibility of one of these colleagues picking up on the site and putting two and two together about the webmaster's identity. Now call me a paranoid android if you like, but if this was my site, I'd be logging off blogging for a while and getting a decent lawyer to proof-read my archives.

Still, lightening up a little, let's all have a laugh at Colin Farrell with long blond hair.

And finally this afternoon, my top 10 films of the year. No places for Roger Avary's adaptation of The Rules Of Attraction (a film about sex and drugs as imagined by someone with no apparent experience of either); The Hours (great performances, but unforgivably shallow); Far From Heaven (Julianne Moore gives another luminous performance but wasted in a film whose plot and character development could be written on the back of a postage stamp and still leave room for your name and address) or Spike Lee's The 25th Hour (has its moments, as any Spike Lee joint should, but hampered by miscasting and ultimately weighed down by its own pretensiousness). These, though, are the ones that made it (I've added average IMDB user ratings for a more objective view):

1. Auto-Focus (directed by Paul Schrader)(IMDB average user rating 6.8/10)
2. City Of God (Katia Lund/Fernando Meirelles)(8.6)
3. Kill Bill Volume 1 (Quentin Tarantino)(8.2)
4. Swimming Pool (Francois Ozon)(7.1)
5. X-Men 2 (Bryan Singer)(7.9)
6. Punchdrunk Love (Philip Thomas Anderson)(7.6)
7. The Ring (Gore Verbinski)(7.5)
8. Daredevil (Mark Steven Johnson)(5.9)
9. In The Cut (Jane Campion)(5.1)
10.Spider (David Cronenberg)(7.0)


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