Monday, July 31, 2006

Murray Bookchin R.I.P.

Died on Sunday, left libertarian Murray Bookchin, aged 85.

Crucify Him!!

Mel bangs on about the "fucking Jews" again, but this time with a twist: He may have been drinking.

Friday, July 28, 2006

Whippets over Chicago

Time to don the flat cap and Doc Martens again. Danbert Nobacon, he of Chumbawamba and Prescott-soaking fame (that's him on the right), plays the Hideout, Chicago, with assorted Pine Valley Cosmonauts, on August 15th.

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Hayfever? Blame Sexist Urban Planners

This article in Governing magazine by Zach Patton explains how U.S. city governments' preference for planting male trees has resulted in the proliferation of pollen. According to Patton, male trees are popular with urban planners because they are easier to maintain and do not generate "litter," all the seeds and fruit that drop from female trees. They do, however, produce pollen, and after 50 years of male-dominated plantings, U.S. cities are mainly filled with allergen-producing trees.

I shall resist any temptation to offer a wry comment on females and litter or men and runny noses, but you feel free.

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

A Touch of the Zidanes

One thing that really bugs me is sportsmen who apologise at press conferences to fans, team-mates, sponsors, etcetera, in fact to everyone except the opponent whose leg they've broken, bollocks crushed, or head butted.

Which begs the question has Paul O'Neill apologised to City Affair and was the apology accepted. Obviously an unacceptably cruel action in a sport where whipping is considered a tactic.

The Bald Patch Runs in the Family, Then

Birmingham Gas Association Football Club Second XI, 1935.

Great Granddad Jones: The only one "with it" enough to sport a flat cap.

I'm Particularly Looking Forward to the Wankers' Workshop

And I'd apply to take part in the documentary, but I can barely hold a pen.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Ghosts of American Astronauts - Mekons

John Glenn drinks cocktails with God in a cafe in downtown Saigon.
Get Some Practice In Now!

The "Now We Have the Bomb" Aerobics Routine

Monday, July 24, 2006

In Preparation for Next Week's Gigs

Memphis Egypt - Mekons

Destroy Your Safe and Happy Lives, Before It Is Too Late!!

Altrincham: It's All Downhill from Here.

Joy Division - She's Lost Control (live1979)

The Joys of YouTube.

Friday, July 21, 2006

Crystal Palace

According to Andrew Hussey's Paris:The Secret History King Charles VI of France , in his later years, had iron rods sewn into his clothes because he believed he was made of glass and would break if he made bodily contact with anyone.

Now, where can I find a bag of stones?

Thursday, July 20, 2006

Same Old United

Last night was the first of Alty's home pre-season "friendlies," against FC United of Manchester. Unsurprisingly, with the heat, alcohol consumption and non-existent segregation, once Alty took the lead and a handful of kids started to goad the red hordes with chants of "Easy, Easy," it turned nasty. On a minor scale.

Half a dozen FCUM fans, including a 70-year-old and his 8-year-old grandson, charged across the terraces scattering the home fans towards the exits. Being veterans of such situations, myself and Big Dave stayed put and watched everyone fly past; if you don't run, they can't chase you.

After a few punches were thrown and a child attempted to drop-kick someone, it fizzled out, the stewards admirably keeping their distance until it was all over. These highly trained security specialsts should really be breaking these things up and taking one on the chin for fans, if you ask me. Alty have issued a statement, which, while playing down the extent of the trouble, also exonerates their own organisation from any culpability. It will be interesting to see if they ban FCUM from playing at Moss Lane, as their visits are nice earners for Alty.

Still, "3-1 in your cup final!"

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Can't Wait to See the Crematorium

The May 22 issue of Forbes magazine carries an article by Patricia Huang entitled "Underwater Undertaking," profiling businessman Gary Levine, who is spending $10 million to construct an underwater cemetery three miles off the coast of Key Biscayne, Florida.

The Atlantis Memorial Reef, described by Huang as an underwater graveyard and scuba attraction, as well as a "Disneyland for the dead," will eventually contain the remains of 80,000 people, we are told, in a pattern covering 15 acres of ocean floor and made up of five concentric circles, based loosely on an account of Atlantis in Plato's dialogue Timaeus.

For those who want to sleep with the fishes.

What Do You Call an Unemployed Libertarian?*

Unemployment in the San Jose area of Silicon Valley heads U.S. figures at 9 percent, not that Adobe boss Bruce Chizen gives a shit.

*a worker, just like anyone else.

Monday, July 17, 2006

Exchange & Mart

Sunday saw the climax of the weekend SWAP festival with a free concert in Cathedral Gardens, Manchester City Centre. As the website didn't give a running order I went down at midday to see what was planned and catch a couple of bands before nipping home for some scran. Now you would have thought that one of the organisers may have picked up on two of the word used above i.e Cathedral and Sunday and realised that there may be some heavy bell action at some point.But no, second band up The Paperwives with strings and four female backing singers were all but drowned out by the 1pm peal fest which spoilt thing somewhat and hastened my appointment with Sunday lunch.

I returned at 5pm in time for all of Sandi Thom's set and wished I'd had pudding instead. Let's hope last month's media hype is soon forgotten and she goes back to online obscurity. Less balls than Avril Lavigne. Highlight was new Manc-Americana band Cherry Ghost , nice darkhearted ballads sung like a more nasal Richard Hawley and a version of Ce Ce Peniston's "Finally". Class, and my latest tip for greatness.

I am Kloot were due on at 8 but hadn't arrived by 8.20 and as I had to be in the pub by 9.15 I missed them.

Friday, July 14, 2006

New Italian Manager Named

Unfortunately, this article doesn't say if he's going to give up fronting the Flaming Lips.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Frank's Wild Space

Added to the Blogroll:

Frank Sidebottom's MySpace site. Upcoming dates provided.

It Brought Tears to My Eyes . . .

I may have some pretensions towards literary flair, but I'll never be able to match this:

"A single sparkling tear fell from Little Mary's cheek onto the sidewalk, then slid into the storm drain, there to join in its course the mighty waters of the Los Angeles River and, eventually, Long Beach Harbor, with it's state-of-the-art container freight processing facilities."

One of the top entries in the Bulwer-Lytton fiction contest. More winners here.

Spotted at Normblog.

You hear them once and you try to move away...

So let the first couple go, then Bompf!

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

If They Like Taking Risks, Why Not Sponsor the Villa Again?

The Chinese company Nanjing Automobile Group has announced that it plans to ressurect the MG marque, building a newly designed MG TF Coupe at a factory in Oklahoma.

"It also will assemble a convertible TF Roadster version at MG’s now-shuttered factory in Longbridge, England, and three sedan models in China. American and European operations for MG Motors will be based in Oklahoma City, 90 miles north of the new factory in Ardmore, Okla."

The rest is here.

Forensics Under Fire

An interesting article by David Dobbs in the July issue of Popular Mechanics magazine examines the doubts that have arisen about traditional forensic science as a result of the much superior reliability of DNA analysis.

Dobbs reports that a study by Arizona State University law professor Michael Saks of 86 convictions that had been overturned by DNA analysis revealed that traditional forensic science had played a role in securing 54 of them; only eyewitness testimony was involved in a higher number of wrongful convictions.

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Death in Cardiff

Jon Langford and Sally Timms will present their multimedia extravaganza Executioners' Last Songs ("a mordantly beautiful performance work that is a compelling collection of tales and songs on the themes of murder, mob law, and cruel, cruel punishment") at the Chapter Arts Centre in Canton, Cardiff, on August 5th.

Monday, July 10, 2006

For Messrs. Roeder, Shearer and Southgate

Don't bother wasting time taking courses for your official UEFA coaching badges when all you need to know to become a successful European manager is: Don't get overun in midfield.

4-5-1. It's the new 5-4-1.

Thursday, July 06, 2006

Christ on a Bike!!

Well, not quite. It's Christ on a Clothesline, by Mina Loy, part of an exhibition, "Daughters of New York Dada," at Francis M. Naumann Fine Art, 22 East 80th Street, reviewed here.

hats off to barca

apparently, they have relented on their "no shirt sponsorship" stance but only to carry the word UNICEF, free of charge.


A Message from Kenny Boy

He says he's taken it all with him.

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

For All Your Genetically Modified Pet Needs

Look no further than Genpets. Bioengineered buddies for all the family.

Michael Owen Back Home In Liverpool

Well that's what I thought when I saw the headline on Ceefax this morning.

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Here's a Sentence You Don't See Every Day

The opening line of an abstract of an article in Vital Speeches of the Day:

"In an address delivered at Ewood Park, Blackburn, United Kingdom, the U.S. Secretary of State discusses the concept of liberal democracy."

with Mark Hughes.

Vics At Home On Boxing Day

And other Alty fixtures

Monday, July 03, 2006

What Really Went On There

Actual footage of England practising their penalties.

Yeah, Like They're Mutually Exclusive

Correction of the Day, courtesy of the June 19 issue of Business Week:

"India's art appreciation" (Global Business, June 5) misidentifies the late Chester Herwitz as a Texas oilman. He was a designer and handbag manufacturer from Worcester, Mass.

Sunday, July 02, 2006

7 months ahead of the game

Mat Snow in Friday's Guardian talked about the joy of discovering new bands. He could save himself a lot of bother by checking in at C&S more often.

Saturday, July 01, 2006

As Advertised in Situationist Consumer Magazine

The wonderful (but not as funny as he used to be) Mark Thomas, profiled in today's Guardian, promoting a new product, his book As Used on the Famous Nelson Mandela.