World of Bile

Thoughts, pics and links from me to you.. Read on...

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Location: London, United Kingdom

I hope you enjoy this as much as I enjoy writing it.

Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Bye Bye PC

One really NASTY virus that one

One night my PC started to emit loud piercing screeches like an angle grinder.

I was most concerned.

When I took it down to Mr Ukranian PC man to see what the problem was, he was not impressed.

After six years is has gone to the Dixons showroom in the sky..

Sunday, February 25, 2007

Some Films I have seen is a godsend to me... here are some films I have seen...lest I forget

Double Indemnity (1944)- A whodunnit about a murder for insurance money. Alot more gripping than it sounds.

Paths of Glory (1957) - Kubrick's first movie. About the horrors of WWI starring Kirk Douglas. To think 2001 was made just 12 years after this - might of well being 42...

Platoon (1986) - 'We were fighting the enemy in ourselves'. Tom Berenger stars as square jawed, clean cut Sergeant Pyschopath - what has he done as good since? Plus the question that has eluded film scholars in the 20 years since.. was Sergeant Elias gay?

The Dam Busters (1954) - a cracking good film based on some plan to blow up German dams which powered the Ruhr. Special guest stars; a theme song which ranks as one of the best alongside 'the Colonel Bogey March' in Bridge over The River Kwai, the plummiest English accents you will ever hear and 'Nigger' the dog. Thats right, Nigger the dog.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Some more of the Polish Pictures plus random other stuff

Thought it was time to clear my camera out - (you lucky people!)

1. Astrid and her beloved baby Jock

2. Jakey and Markey cop a feel...

4. Angel christmas light thingy at the bottom of Wawel Castle

5. Went to visit Shash's place to visit him and his little girl. Shes about 6 months old and has well and truly mastered the 'What the fuck are you doing?' expression.

6. Same as 5.

Friday, February 16, 2007

An interesting business opportunity??

Discovered this today..

An American guy selling his soul online?

Get the chance of naming his kids?

Get a future share of his monthly taxable income?

Click here

Monday, February 12, 2007

The Krakow Kronicles

The story of our weekend away:

Its funny when a place exceeds your expectations isn't it? As our BA flight swooped low over Krakow i gazed down over snow capped 50s apartment blocks and thought 'this place looks like a Communist sh4th0le". It was a really bouncy landing too - the sort 1930s air passengers would applaud in the days when getting back to ground in one piece was of highest importance.

What you do next is catch a bus from the airport to the train station which is actually only about 200 yards down the road. 'Station' is stretching it though, more like 'bus shelter' to be honest. Luckily our wait was short: a creaking 1950s style train drew up after about 3 minutes and we all piled in. Straight out of some Cold War political thriller - lots of brown surfaces, no advertising and a bevy of Polish fishwives on board. After the slow crawl into the centre of town we disembarked into a station straight out of a Cold War thriller and I expected Orson Welles to be waiting in the shadows for us.. the town has a certain Gothic charm.

As any sane person would do, we made a bee-line for the nearest boozer - a place called 'The Tower'. As I'm sure is the norm throughout East Europe, you go down a flight of stairs through the rock and into the pub. This one was kinda like a crypt which served booze with a Polish rap/ heavy metal soundtrack. We sat down and ordered our beers (6 pints of 'zwyiek' or something - a scrabble players dream) and 3 local girls appeared to scrounge a cigarette off us. It must be like going into a bar in Thailand - the local chicks see the wealthy westerners (ha!) and zero in for some freebees.. The thing you notice about Polish people they all speak damn good English, the blonde one (called Oriana) asked us for a cigarette, Harry rolled it up and they passed it around like it was a spliff or something! As is a scroungers way, they soon cleared off when I bought a round of beers and didnt get any of them one.

After that the sequence of events gets a little muddled. Did we go into the club by the Main Square on the Friday night or the Saturday? We wandered down into one club ordered a round of shots and made our way onto a crowded dancefloor. As Beyonce chittered away through the speakers one thing struck me: we could have been anywhere in the western world: Birmingham, Aukland or Munich, the kids look the same and the music sounds the same. One thing that did stand out was the women, they are beautiful! The place was packed with delicate auburn and raven haired beauties who I just couldnt take my eyes off.. Suffused with vodka and the spirit of good times I was transported to a moment on a Berlin dancefloor, on my last away trip with the boys.

With the seductive dancing spirit within me I selected my target, an elegant red-head of about 5 foot in height with cigarette in hand. We danced for a bit, I thought 'time to give it a shot' and moved in. Taking the cigarette out of her hand, having a puff and giving it back to her (for me a real Cassanova move, natch!). She didnt want to play after that and gave me a playful push away, I kissed her hand and turned away! She was NOT impressed and gave me a shove in the back! Heheheh!! Anyway, by about 2ish the novelty was starting to wear off so I weaved my drunken way across the Square and back to my hotel room. Saw a funny sight on my return: Steve had returned an hour or so earlier and was lying peacefully asleep, oblivious to all my drunken attempts to wake him. He looked like a East European dictator lying in state or something - give him a moustache and he would have looked like Stalin or something!

Saturday morning. My body clock rang briskly about 7 to jolt me out of my hangover. Next stop breakfast to keep it at bay. We dragged Gaz down to breakfast where through an immense act of will he sat eating a single piece of toast before retreating back to his bed again. Forgive me if this just becomes a stream of consciousness report but a week later, events seem to have a dreamlike quality about them. Our trip to Auchwitz was a case in point (Sunday?) - Steve, Jakey and myself bundled a sleep deprived (and slightly less hungover) Gaz into a cabdrivers car for the 50min journey over to the place. Our set of wheels was a Merc which was the most unusual colour I have ever seen..have you ever seen a sawdust coloured mercedes - I kid you not. The main museum area is Auschwitz 1 and we spent a couple of hours walking around the site. You know when you pick up a vibe in a place? Here it was so strong the atmos was nearly tangible. In one of the accomadation blocks have been stored some of the camp victims' posessions; room after room full till brimming with shoes, glasses, prayer mats and even hair (yes hair, the Germans made fabric out of it). We staggered out feeling pretty shellshocked (Steve in his eloquence described it as a 'death mong') and sat in near silence throughout our hour long journey back.. the place gives you the willies..

My memories our visit are punctuated with countless little funny moments. Walking round the back streets by the river looking for a club called 'Vinyl' and asking some Polish roadworkers where the hell it was...even though they didnt speak a word of English..visiting Wawel Caste and seeing the 17th Century S&M portraits on the cetera.. Every trip needs one random, shared silly moment and ours was in front of the Polish version of 'World's Strongest Man'. German strongman Gunther participating in the truck pull muttering all kinds of gutteral Ayrian obscenities at the lorry as he pulled it. Steve thought one of 'em sounded like 'Mama'.. must have been an interesting upbringing that..On the downside I remember was how grumpy a lack of sleep and minor rated hangovers get me: we visited a wonderful bar called the Buddha Bar - beautiful decor, Karma Sutra pictures on the wall, one of the prettiest waitresses I have ever seen in a low cut top..but man I was in a strop. Until we started on the absynthes that is. After a couple of those I felt probably the most chilled and contented than in years!

Saturday, February 10, 2007

Krakow 26-29/01 Random Pics

Gareth looks particularly protective of Jacob in this picture doesnt he?

The Absynthe made me do it.

After the fifth pill Jake lost control of his facial muscles..

I love this picture - Gaz looks absolutely huuge in here. Believe it or not these boys are all pretty much the same size!

Me and Mark

Mark and the portrait in our room hit it off from the start..

Wawel Castle.. straight out of Gotham City

A Church.. with me spaced and hungover in the foreground..

Steve lies In State on my return from the club. He looked dead to me and I couldnt wake him

Insert amusing caption here..

Jake in fresh faced German schoolboy daytripper pose..

Doesn't Steve look like he is really enjoying this pint?

The Boys sit down for a feed. Time for a bit of bonding.

The turban was a little bit on the small side.

The mood lighting makes Jake look good!

There is only one thing you can say about this pic..and I ain't gonna say it.


Friday, February 09, 2007

Notorious Vs Notorious?

Film time again... has just gifted me with the 1946 Hitchcock classic 'Notorious': one of the tautest, darkest psychological thrillers I've ever had the pleasure to view. Here's IMDBs verdict of it:

The ending was a bit tacked on though.

Apparently, some idiot (I cannot italicise the word idiot enough in this case) tried to remake it as a TV movie back in 1992! How dumb can you get????

Thursday, February 08, 2007

The Moon

My housemate is an amateur astrologist.

With his telescope and camera he gets some stunning images. This particular one of the moon I just had to have.

Taken from a cold back garden in KT1

Friday, February 02, 2007

An old Ciao post: Ghostbusters (1984)

Well, as Im now part of some exclusive online movie community, I thought Id better up the output. Here is a review I wrote for all of nearly 3 years ago.

Doesn't time fly, eh?

Ghostbusters is the perfect example of the 80s blockbuster: the underdog(s) succeeding against great odds - you can see similar themes in everything from Beverly Hills Cop through to Rambo. Where this movie hits the spot is that it is consistanty engaging and funny throughout. Often 'fun for all the family' is a label which makes me run for the door, but in this case I would be happy to watch this with a little nephew and know we would both love it.

Case study for the 'can do 80s'. Loveable losers Venkman, Spengler and Stanz(Murray, Ramis, Ackroyd) get chucked out of college lecturing positions and cast out onto the street to fend for themselves. The reason is unclear - there is an hilarious early scene where Murray's character engineers an esp experiment in order to go out on a date with the pretty female participant but the other two's shortcomings arent explained. The paranormal is their thing so after an ill fated trip to the public library they decide to go into the ghost catching business. There are plot holes a plenty - the one above as well as Ramis's character conveniently telling his cohorts they can catch and store ghosts inevitably (some buildup would have been good here) however the story moves on at a cracking pace after this point. Word spreads of their service and with paranormal activity on the increase they become local celebrities. Of course a love interest is de rigeur in a movie like this, and appears in the shapely form of Dana Barrett (Sigourney Weaver) who enchants Venkman and is sickened and bemused by his advances in equal measure. She gets tied in with the supernatural goings on as they increase in intensity and frequency, eventually having a close encounter with the fridge in her appartment. The light comedic relief comes in the form on Louis Tully (Rick Moranis) - a geeky accountant who holds parties for clients instead of friends and has a place in his heart for the lovely Barrett just down the hall. He gets his lady near the end, but not in the way he hopes!

Both these characters are just sidelines to the main story - the workload for the guys in grey becomes so great they employ another team member Winston Zeddimore (Ernie Hudson), a pragmatist who upon being questioned on his beliefs states ' If there's a steady paycheck in it.. I will believe in anything you say!' Funnily enough his beliefs don't need to be justified by who pays the bills, human intervention (the EPA) brings an other worldly finale to the movie and ultimately a shoot-out between the good guys and a very large bad guy 100 stories above Central Park. I'm sure you can guess who wins!

I first watched this film when I was 7- it has everytrhing a kid could want - special effects, scary ghouls, lots of crashes, bashes and mess. Twenty years on I still love it, it is the cracking script and stand out performances that justify repeat viewing. As in Groundhog Day, Ramis has provided us with a couple of hours of story based on an ingenious premise. Both films have Murray as the star - not the thoughtful, introspective, mid life crisis Murray (Rushmore and Lost in Translation? ZZZ!) but the young, cynical, sassy version. In this film his character is so appealing to me because he totally unflappable, in a crisis wouldnt you like to be so cool, calm and collected? One incident springs to mind: Venkman finally earns a date with Dana Barrett, but unfortunately it is the demon-posessed one who answers the door. She talks of 'keymasters' and 'Zuul' whilst slime drips from the wall. Enough to make you run screaming out the door, no? Not Venkman - he jokes about split personalities and doesnt bat an eyelid when she starts speaking like the offspring of Steven Hawking and Barry White before floating five feet of the bed! Murray gets the lions share of the good lines but adds some great improvised moments too (piano in the bedroom, dinner table at the hotel) that prove he is one funny guy. Ackroyd and Ramis provide great support as the enthusiastic chubby and humourless skinny science geeks who are the brains of the operation. The latter delivers his lines in a dry, baritone voice with utter straightness which obscures the clever and witty content of what he is actually saying ( I love the twinky metaphor).

Id be doing the rest of the cast a disservice by not mentioning them but Ill be brief - Annie Potts is the whiney secretary with a voice the equivalent of fingernails on a blackboard. Im sure Ernie Hudson has spent the last 20 years expanding his cop / sarge repertoire in TV movies and straight to video offerings, he looks the part.

The soundtrack is instantly recognisable: the stomping Ray Parker Jnr tune was a number one back in the day and is a mainstay of 80s nights across the land even now. The rest of the music is a blend of Jerry Lee Louis Lite, dreamy 80s vocals and gothic Harold Faltemeyer offerings. Imaging Bach with a Moog Synthesiser and you're bang on!

I love this film - you can probably tell. It's a feel good movie with an escatological flavour to it. You root for the good guys despite their shortcomings and ultimately everyone gets what they deserve. I wont lie to you, it's all served with a large helping of cheese by the finale and the special effects look laughable now. The final line of the film is reminiscent to Rodney Dangerfield's last words in Caddyshack and makes you wonder: ' Why the hell did he say that?' None of this detracts from the fact that this film is fun, clever and real entertainment whether you're 5 or 85.