haters gonna hate – even the shit i be proud of, yeah?



road warrior – the dave howard singers

Last night I watched ‘Mad Max – Fury Road’, or at least, I put up with the first hour of it. Colour me old-fashioned if you will, but when someone says ‘film’ to me, I imagine a meshing together of things like plot, characters, emotional involvement and some kind of interest in events as they unfold. This had none of these, that I could see. The audio-visual equivalent of a stranger ramming a handful of cutlery into your face while they giggle hysterically.

What it did have was flames, revving engines and explosions. After sixty minutes of this sort of thing, it struck me that I cared little or not at all about any of the characters. I didn’t like even one of them enough to want them to succeed and/or live and I didn’t even hate anyone enough to hope they’d die, perish or be gang-fucked by rabid baboons. So I left the room, abandoning the people I was undergoing it with and washed some dishes. Exciting dishes. Brilliant dishes with beginnings, middles and ends. And when I’d eked them out as long as I could, I returned to watch someone having his face torn off and Tom Hardy giving Charlize Theron (looking even rougher than she did in ‘Monster’) a sad half-smile and pissing off, bringing some sort of God-accursed sequel that much more likely.

To be honest, I didn’t much care for the original ‘Mad Max’ trilogy. The first two I found boring and the final one was just plain brain-damaged. I failed to understand how anyone around me – and there were plenty of them, recommending this crap and smiling like Jehovah’s Witnesses – imagined these were in any way ‘good’. About all they did was unleash a then youthful Mel Gibson on the world. Giving them the cultural significance of the gravestone that whispered at Peter Sutcliffe, telling him it was time to start killing women.

That said, ‘Mad Max – Fury Road’, to its credit, does not feature either Tina Turner or Angry Anderson. But then, neither does ‘Emmanuelle in space’. Or the new Aldi that’s opened in Cowdenbeath. Which, unlike this millstone of the cinema, I could see me putting myself through again.


fade to grey – visage

So, the film of ‘fifty sheds of shite’ is now with us. Early reports indicate that groups of pissed-up women are attending showings of the film and generally acting like embarrassed schoolgirls.

In Glasgow, to celebrate a Valentine’s Day showing of the alleged film, three inebriated women attacked a male who’d asked them to keep it down so that he and his partner could watch it.

According to the media, couples are going to see it and in some cases it’s broadening and expanding their love lives. Presumably the sort of couples who’d been blissfully unaware of BDSM until they saw the film.

Of course, if you’re one of the people inspired to experiment in the bedroom, it’s important that you remember that SADO-MASOCHISTIC SEX IS ILLEGAL IN THE UK. Yep, that’s right. Ever since March 10th, 1993, when the spanner trial ended, a mark that lasts til morning is verboten and can have you sent to the naughty step. And, the presiding judge did say, “this is not a witch-hunt against homosexuals; if heterosexuals or bisexuals were in this court today, they would be treated in the same manner.” So there.

Of course, BDSM becomes fashionable every few years. Or, at least, tight shiny clothes do. So for the next few months, all sorts of people are going to be claiming that they’re really into BDSM and always have been (although they’ll probably call it ‘S&M’, because that Rhianna song, yeah?)

I thought for a while that the sales of the book would be a positive. Although most males start out either submissive or dominant and stay put, many women start as sub and later, discover their dominant side. I thought that some women would try out BDSM, like it and then realise there were benefits in Female-Led Relationships – or at least in never having to give another blow-job for as long as they lived.

I don’t know why I keep over-estimating the human race. I’m invariably disappointed. This film – just like the book – will do about as much to disseminate understanding of power exchange relationships as Fred West did for childcare.

hello there – foetus

I’m feeling a bit stronger although I still can’t push myself too hard without crashing all over again. I get good days and bad days. I’m trying to force myself to sleep eight, nine hours a night, which I’m finding difficult. The main problem is, as soon as my eyes open, my brain kicks in and BANG! I’m wide awake and looking for mischief to get up to. Not great when a small percentage of said brain is clamouring for me to shut down all that in-skull Czech animation at fast forward speed!

So I’m doing as much as I can in between work, personal hygiene and attempting to interact with my fellow man.

I discovered this morning that there’s a Bollywood film called ‘Ladies and gentleman’, released in 2013. For a horrible moment, I thought I was going to have to rename the book I’m about to publish – after all, the first on-screen Bollywood kiss had to be filmed in Switzerland to avoid outrage. I hardly think the people whose labour of love I’ve coincided with will be delighted to be associated with some weirdo’s bizarro-ass novel that consists mainly of pie-eating, fucking and all the pursuit that that entails!

Anyhoo, I’ve created a faceboak page for the book:

Hopefully, it can harvest ‘likes’ and the book’ll make a bigger splash when it comes out. Then I can get my nose to the grindstone and finish polishing August’s novel while planning and executing April’s NaNoWriMo, which I’m still researching for at present. It’s coming together, though. I’ve got my setting and half a dozen characters. I just wish I had time to drop some acid and come up with a suitably ridiculous plot! As Hemmingway said, “write drunk, edit sober”…

let’s dance – david bowie

Philip Seymour Hoffman’s death has stunned me. I’ve long regarded him as the finest supporting actor in the world, like George C Scott or Gary Oldman (before he made ‘Leon’, obviously). I wasn’t aware Hoffman was battling an addiction – why would I be? He was Lester Bangs in ‘almost famous’, The Count in ‘The boat that rocked’ and Phil Parma in ‘Magnolia’. This guy must’ve been great if he can make me defend a Tom Cruise movie AND one by Richard Curtis.
Like George C Scott, watching Hoffman was like never having seen him before in anything. He looked like he was born to play *that* part, like no other. Every single time.
He was a massive presence (remember ‘The talented Mr Ripley’?’)
I heard he was dead on twitter this morning. I haven’t pored over all the ‘best of’ video clips, nor have I settled down to watch ‘The boat that rocked’ or ‘Magnolia’. I don’t even know much more of his recent history than “forty-six and a drug overdose”.
Acting’s one of the jobs that burns people out if they’re any good at it and it’s now sounding like Hoffman had his fair share of demons. Harvey Keitel once said that if he hadn’t been able to externalise all his demons in front of the camera, he’d probably have ended up killing someone. And now those demons have taken away the finest supporting actor in all of Christendom.

goldfinger – magazine

I’ve just finished Ian Fleming’s ‘Dr No’. I last read the Bond books when I was at primary school, (which I left in 1973) so they’re pretty much fresh to me now. I’m rereading them in order is time, so this is the six in the series and the best I’ve read so far. The racism’s somewhat out of date, as are the figures of speech, but plot wise, it’s terrific. The culminating obstacle-course was vividly written, sucked me right in. No wonder they picked this one to film first!
I kept thinking, as I read through the last fifty or so pages, how brilliant Daniel Craig would be, playing this role in a decent remake of this film, if they spent a few bob on it, made another Bond film like ‘Casino royale’, which looked like the shot-in-the-arm the franchise needed. But then there was ‘Quantum of solace’, which was a bit dull. And ‘Skyfail’ was shit. Ralph Fiennes is a rank rotten M, less than half the man Dame Judi Dench was and ‘Bond #24, next ex-mess, will more than likely be unwatchable.
Weirdly, I had a relationship with someone, a few years ago, who loathed James Bond. No idea why, but through that relationship, I discovered that it’s not possible to win an argument with someone who hates James bond. Not when the longest running Bond was Roger fucking Moore.
Synchronistically enough, she gets out of my life – and James Bond does too.

voodoo idol – the cramps

I spent the weekend wrestling with the cover for ‘1919 inside’, which will be out in the world shortly.

Saturday night, I went through to Edinburgh to see Maya Deren’s “Divine Horsemen” film. I read her book way back in the eighties, but had never got around to seeing the film itself until now. Pretty impressive, as was the soundtrack by William Bennett.

I met up with the artist who’ll be doing the ‘1919’ cover. We’ve communicated for so long through e-mauls and text, that it’s easy for each of us to forget that the other ever had a face.

After the entertainment, the artist and I headed to a hostelry seemingly created for students to swear in while drinking lager. and there were absolutely no dark beers whatsoever – we ‘made our excuses and left’ as tabloid journalists do when fleeing fetish clubs.

Eventually, we hit a proper pub and were able to have that wide-ranging conversation. (the king’s head was encouraging all those who sailed in her to commit karaoke – the scoundrels!)

This morning, I got up at seven and dived straight into dreich noir, tidying up three episodes to upload later. I wrote the first draft of another, too.

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