Sunday, 23 May 2010

Where the Wild Things Are

(originally posted on myspace here)


The voice of Garnier boarded the 23:53 from London Bridge bearing Sauvignon Blanc and a bucket of popcorn in a 5p plastic bag from Marks and Spencers and having made his way through those standing to a spare aisle seat across from two still-sobre women in what it is perfectly acceptable these days to refer to as fake tan, perched his purchases. A punnet of two drumsticks was then brought out and as he fumbled around for a corner to open, the voice of Garnier felt a sudden pang about the boldness of eating chicken in quarters these confined, but calculating that were it not polished off on the journey he would only have to share it at the other end the voice of Garnier persevered, elbows tight by his side, managing finally to break into the packaging with the sharpest of a bunch of keys. Avoiding eye contact, still dandling the bag on his knee and doing his best to keep his beard clear of the meat while he ate he now began to notice traces of blood appear on his finger tips. It was on the chicken too, which didn't taste raw, and on further inspection the voice of Garnier discovered the source of the blood was in fact his own split mouth. Meanwhile on a pin-board in Brockley his beloved beamed beside two new housemates in a polaroid taken the night before by Police Constable Wolf.

Give her a place to stand and she'll move the Earth.

Monday, 17 May 2010

Final day of my exciting election blog: The Comfort Zone

(originally posted on myspace here)


(Klegg joke)

It's gone. I'm pretty sure it's gone, the comfort zone. That seems to be the mood. Hence the outrage. Yes, I said "mood". Is my political judgment too superficial? I don't know. But if I attached no importance at all to the superficial, I couldn't be an actor or a writer. Heavens, how would my conscience stand for it? I'd be a doctor instead. I'd make bread or chairs, or, Christ, yes of course, work in politics, even if I was useless at it... rather than make things that serve no material purpose, things as superficial as Obama's "Yes we can" or the broadcast of Brown's "bigoted old woman" or even (NEVER FORGET!) Cameron's decision to cycle into work while having a spare shirt chauffeured in behind him. But I make these superficial things, have no qualms about making them rather than healing or feeding people because you know, I suppose I believe that in a society where people have the right to communicate with each other, how they communicate is actually important, and should be taken care of. I must believe that.

And believing that, I can't help but consider the "superficial" aspects of this new deal, and in so considering conclude that the National Security Council's biggest gaff thus far has been simply turning up...


I mean, LOOK at all these English whitemen. Does Clegg look out of place? I think he does actually. He's the only one who's achieved anything. An entirely superficial judgment I know, but one I never thought I'd be saying a month ago. Who would have thought Clegg's woodeness when working to a script belied a such a gob-smacking hidden talent for political improvisation? He's like Eddie Izzard, on both counts. Did you see how comfortably he reacted to that journalist who brought up Cameron's description of him as bad political joke (in a bad political joke?)? And did you see Cameron shit himself when he walked: "Hahaha, come back. Haha..."? In spite of all the work Cameron's put in he's actually feeble in his command of the superficial (symptomatic of what we in the making-shit-up industry call "lacking vision".) Having Clegg stand next to him doesn't make him look good at all. And standing next to Cameron is now Clegg's job.

Actually okay, I've just watched it over again and what really strikes me now about this clip is how Cameron isn't working from a script either. He can't. The BBC meanwhile, who still are, just look like jerks now (John Finnemore's good on this). And if you're spitting tacks at Clegg for seeking a coalition with the party that got the most votes, then you confuse me because that's exactly what he said he'd do, isn't it? Which is why I voted Labour. If you voted Libdem, surely this is what you voted for. And good for you! We're all out of our Comfort Zone now. Hopefully. Even those forty-something English whitemen taking us over. And Christ, we should have left it long ago, certainly by the time David Kelly slit his wrists. We should never have let the Comfort Zone consolidate itself into a place where who you feared or hated were the only credentials that meant anything (apart from, I suppose, your favourite X factor judge), never have let it take our Government - OUR Government - into unchallenged recession, war, the state-sponsored teaching of creationism and the unpunished killing of innocent bystanders by police. Oh and this. So fuck the good guys. Where there's death there's hope, and we had to say goodbye to that. I have no idea how this will pan out, or who will suffer, but I do know two things: A) Every face that made me smile when Labour won in '97 has long since been forced to resign or died or been forced to resign, then died. And B) Come PMQs it would be very cool (on an entirely superficial level of course) to see Diane Abbott at the dispatch box.

Oh this is very funny though:

Sunday, 9 May 2010

Day 3 of my exciting election blog! AN INVITATION TO JOIN THE GOVERNMENT

(originally posted on myspace here)

I started following Jennifer Ehle on twitter today (cf "Who I'd like to meet" on the homepage) and learnt thereby of the proposed gathering in Trafalgar Square calling for electoral reform, so thought I'd head over. You know, Jennifer Ehle! She wasn't there though. Morris Dancers were there. Even the statue of Sir Keith Parks had buggered off. Confused, I took a call a from my sister to let me know everyone had now moved to St. John Smith's Square where Tinyteeth and Clegg were deep in something or other and the real action was. But again I arrived too late, there was no Jennifer Ehle. I thought of calling out her name but didn't know how to pronounce it. Billy Bragg was there though, which was nice, giving out free hugs, and a few protesters still hanging around looking very happy, but mainly now it was just men from the telly. Men, no women.

A BBC piece to the camera in Arabic. "Gosh, of course there might be a scuffle" I heard one onlooker say. Nope.

And I have concluded the following on the train home: The Libdems would be mad to settle for anything less than electoral reform in a deal with the Conservatives. BUT the Conservatives would be mad to grant it. BUT everyone would be mad to settle for a minority Conservative Government when what's called for is stability. BUT the Libdems would also be mad to form an alliance with Labour if it meant Gordon Brown was still PM. BUT Labour would be mad to change him for a leader with an even smaller mandate, again when what is called for is stability... So the only possible resolution? Nick Clegg as PM EXACTLY AS I PREDICTED! God I'm good.

Saturday, 8 May 2010

Day 2 of my exciting election blog! (Not alone)

(originally posted on myspace here)


So were you up for Opik? It doesn't have the same ring, does it? Firstly then hats off to Alistair Stewart and ITV...Christ I'm watching BBC News 24 right now and their palpable impatience with the absence of a result favouring the Tories is like an armpit in the face. Do they not realise this might take some time? What the hell were they thinking last night? Where was their Plan B? Paxman asking half-heard questions about results that weren't in, David Dimleby grumbling about shots of "leylandii and other sorts of hideous hedges" while fielding eerie late-night phone-calls describing a mood of despondency, intercut with Andrew Neill (if there was ever a Dick Tracy villain called Cowpat...) and Bill Wyman on a yacht, all this maybe was not the way to go. No, I turned over to ITV at around two in the morning and gratefully never turned back. There was arguing on ITV. I like arguing, it's sort of a bit like explaining. Alistair Stewart, who I'd thought ran that first leaders' debate with the deceptively hectic hand of a Thelma Schoonmaker, insured once more that time flew, while points got made and I actually felt like I was learning something. And the choice of guests was perfect: For Labour, looking like Dredd without the helmet and sounding like John Wagner John Reid appeared the epitome of stour, sly Old Left badass (I thought they'd all died). Anne Widdecombe meanwhile was everything I wanted to see in a Tory that night: angry, baffled, tiny and old. And for the LibDems - I don't know, who who is that guy? He's great, I've seen him quite a bit. He looks like the haggard scientist nobody will listen to charting the course of the meteorite, and he sighed a lot.

As well he might. It looks like I wasn't alone. Nick Clegg's now doing exactly what he said he would, which is why in the end so many of us didn't vote for him and plumped instead for the party we wanted to see him form a coalition with. Bear this in mind though, it's not Clegg's decision in the end. Any alliance he forms will have to supported by his party. And look at them. I don't see them favouring Cameron. But I don't know. It's like Battlestar Galactica, isn't it. Is it? It's like Mad Men. What's the word I'm looking for? It's drama.

I'm looking over my tweets, what was the highlight? Definitely this. "Nakedpainter posted at March 6th". She's alive. You Monsters are the greatest.

Friday, 7 May 2010

Day 1 of my exciting election blog!

(originally posted on myspace here)

Twitter off. Facebook off. Adam and Joe's fourmative years, the new trailer for Machete and all my other little roughneck palette-cleansers OFF. I have surprised myself at the polling station, knuckled down, buckled under, and bright as the sun is now shining, in my gut there is at best mist. And at worst, and as per, rage. So let's get on with this. Focus... No, focus. Oh but hang on wait, look, the Machete trailer's been removed and somebody's trying to kill themselves in the comments page. I hope they live... Shit. Two nights ago a guy called Jim gassed himself in my girlfriend's block. The police evacuated everyone at one in the morning and got them to sit in a bus. I don't know what they did with all the people on the bus.

What show is this I'm about to run off to now? Show 231. Money's running until September I hear. Breathe.... For those who haven't been, it ends in a long chamber of opposition benches rowdily, loudly heading off the rails. And of course a couple of weeks ago it looked as though this might actually happen, provoking in me a little beat the heart skipped best expressed in two pieces written by our David Mitchell - this at the beginning of the campaign, and this two weeks in... or to sum up "We're sick of a system where all a party leader needs to do to win power is convince us that he's not as bad as his rival."

I didn't feel this sickness at the time. But I'm feeling it now. And what happened next was not, as reported, "mass hysteria", but simply - for me at least - the appearance in front of Jeremy Paxman of a man who actually wanted to answer questions. This man then appeared on a stage as unimpressive as the door to Number 10 and having been shouted down every time he stood up to speak in our Mother of Parliaments, finally allowed to play to grown-ups, seemed the only one at home. I'd never really got the fuss about MPs' expenses being a happy-go-lucky, self-employed scumbag, never really felt that same rage at that idea of "an out-of-touch gentleman's club" UNTIL I watched that debate on ITV, and saw how at sea both Brown but also, gloriously, Cameron looked when left to fend for themselves outside of the idea-free, Steve-Wright-in-the-Afternoon atmosphere of that baying Goonanza, even when stood next to a Nick Clegg... And what happened next was we all went online and looked not at the polls, but at what people actually thought. And for the first time ever, we who had never voted Tory, we who had never voted Labour, read what we were thinking. Man, that ITV debate was the BEST Kraftwekg gig ever, come on! SKY's was a dismal sham and the BBC's a reverent, echoey fudge that gave Cameron and Brown exactly the advantages of deference which ITV's crappy Going for Gold set had so thrillingly stripped from them. You can't convincingly call for change in a chapel, it seems rude. But still, how I wish in that last debate Clegg had played it like a man with nothing to lose, wish he'd at least mentioned Vince Cable, and made very clear "WITHOUT US THIS WILL NEVER STOP. THIS WILL NEVER STOP." But he didn't and what happened next?

Echoes again. Gordon Brown surrounded by admirers, alive when applauded, like Tinkerbell. John Constantine facing up to the Conservatives like he did when I was fifteen... Was it John Cleese lying in a ditch and dressed as a monk who said "It's not the despair that gets to you. It's the hope." Well no, I liked hope. Hope made people kinder, it stopped them thinking about just how shit the other side was for a second.

I live in Dulwich, apparently. When I walked into the polling booth today I suddenly realised that all hope in me was dead. There was only fear and the memory of Boris Johnson and the blue doughnut. It's a safe Labour seat but I made it safer. Nae cunt's pinning this one me.

And what happens next? Safe scape that guy on the comments page. Lurk. Lurk. Poor Jim.