Tuesday, 31 March 2009

What is your favourite cake?

Adam & Jo keep teasing me, saying that they're going to run a "text the nation, text, text text!" on what is your favourite cake but never run the item.

Therefore I shall attempt to start this contentious topic in my own inimitable fashion.

As a child, Saturday nights meant one thing; a "mixed grill" consisting of lamb chops, kidneys, sausages, bacon, fried eggs, chips and cream cakes, Cholesterol hadn't been invented then, thank Christ!

The cakes where purchased from Holts of Shepperton, the local (only) bakers in my village.

My mother bought 3 chocolate eclairs, not the finger shaped, these were great blobs of choux (?) pastry topped with sticky chocolate filled with thick whipped cream!! And 3 apple turnovers, also filled with the aforementioned cream, this was the 70s after all. She would then cut each in half so that we could sample both.

I'm my later obese days I would purchase whole cakes and greedily devour both but then fat and cholesterol were discovered along with smoking related diseases and I had to give all that shit up.

Therefore my favourite cakes to this day are chocolate eclairs and apple turnovers.

What about you eh?

Thursday, 26 March 2009

Podcast Number 10

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This has been one of my favourites. I interview independent artist, musician, dancer, actor and great friend Charles Olsen. He talks about visits to, the now notorious, Branstons Farm in Surrey in the early nineties. Meeting Dave, Paul and myself in the early stages of Drunk on Logic, almost winning the Saatchi prize and living in Madrid. As he lives in Madrid , the only way I could do the interview was to record our Skype conversation and it turned out pretty good.

I found myself without a clip of Charlie playing Flamenco so had to Skype him to send one, only to find that he didn't have one either. Fortunately he was able to record an impromptu piece on the spot and email it over. What a pro!

His web presence is amazing and has many a site to see as he does so much. Including a blog written in Spanish!

If you use iTunes to download this podcast then you will also be able to see the pics I added, screen grabs showing our Skype/recording session.

I also included one of my tunes as well as a 12 year old recording of Drunk On Logic's first paid gig.
If you don't have or fear the iTunes then you can listen or download by clicking here

Friday, 20 March 2009


Ladies and gentlemen of the web. I put it to you that in the majority of sitcoms, be they animations or real life, the male lead is always characterised as a bumbling flawed idiot.
How come this is not the case for women?
There is one exception and that is To The Manor Born

Saturday, 7 March 2009

It's Not Easy Being Green

I'm generally annoyed with TV shows for one of two reasons.

One - Annoying presenters

Two – Aforementioned annoying presenters doing something pointless and banal.

Which is why “It’s not Easy Being Green” has achieved something special. It has made me despise not only Lauren Lavern but also Phil Jupitus.

It also made me question this whole idea of trying to live a “green lifestyle”


Group Captain Strawbridge, was the hero in the previous series. It used to be a quaint way to pass 30 minutes. I’ve watched him digging ditches, moving chickens, and helping old ladies water their sheep and in a small way aspired to this country type lifestyle.

Now there has been an obvious change in the production team


Last weeks show openes with “fresh meat” (organic!) in the shape of Phil Jupitus (chubby funster and down with the kids, kind of) and Lauren Laverne (accepatable, fragrant and vegetarian) towing “The greenest caravan in the world”. Unfortunately this wonderful aluminium (recycled) Airstream was being towed by the two in a huge 4X4 monster thus negating any “eco” credentials it may have had, with Phil constantly taking his hands off the wheel in some form of green deathwish.


Then, inexplicably, we cut to some posh people buying an old door. Who are these people? Why are we supposed to be interested in them buying a door? As this clip pans out it appears that in earlier episodes we (you?) have been watching these folk do up their house in an “eco” stylie. We’re not told this until about 10 minutes in by which time I don’t care who they are as they’ve already annoyed the hell out of me.


Then we cut back to Phil and Lauren who are eating food that has been “cooking” in their engine whilst they have been driving. So what amazing culinary delights have they concocted? Gypsy style hedgehog? Pheasant in olde Englishe Cidre? No, pasties, warmed up pasties no doubt tasting of diesel. Great, thanks!


That over we’re whisked off again, via another yet another flowery graphic please, please no more, to grumpy author and skinflint Hunter Davies who shares with us his sad and crazy life of eating rotten fruit, stamping on toothpaste tubes and creeping into the first class department of airplanes and pilfering the discarded socks left by its passengers.

“They just leave them behind” he bemoans.

It’s because they’re cheep and sweaty Hunter, leave it!


Then the most pointless part of the program.  A freecyclist (what’s wrong with buying food?) makes some bread. Well, actually he doesn’t. He scrounges some flour from a miller and gives it to his mate who makes it. How? We are not told but he is very funky and he has a beard. Then it’s sold in a market. Which market? Who knows but a passing French women nods her approval so that’s ok then.


All these little segments are rushed through at such a pace that there is no time for any useful passing on of information it’s style over content,  fast cuts, flowery animations and quirky music.


There is an earnest nodding of heads whenever the holy words are spoken; “carbon footprint” “eco friendly” or the more simple and meaningless “eco”.


The final “working out of how many planets would it need to support the world if we were all Phil Jupitus”. *Insert joke here* was just insulting.


The group Captain sits with a laptop (not paper or pencil) asking our Phil about his car “is a 4ltre engine big?” he asks coyly, how much air travel does he take? Does he know Hunter Davies is probably wearing his old socks?

He doesn’t ask if Phils house is insulated, if he recycles, how old his car is? That would be a little to deep for this show.


I know it is easy to cynical about all this “global warming nonsense” but I’m not. I do try and do my bit and, without going into details, I do ok. I look to programs like this for information and the reassurance that there are a few folk like me, just doing or bit, recycling our cans, not driving everywhere and not buying beans from the moon ect. but this show managed to trivialise the whole idea of sustainability and make a mockery of anything “green”.


In truth, Lauren is too cute to hate and Phil has earned a lifetime of kudos from appearing on Buzzcocks so I can never actually hate him, but they haven’t done themselves any favours by appearing in this flowery drivel, especially as later on Phil admits to an £8000 gas bill from leaving his pool heated for the winter!

The thing is it IS easy being green