the tories are treating people worse than animals.

I think I am duty bound to flag this Guardian video up – it would be negligent of me if I didn’t. It is just one example of the appalling way in which people with disabilities are currently being treated in this country. The tories’ cuts to welfare have ruined so many lives. This video illustrates the problem quite graphically, but I don’t think it oversteps the mark: day after day, I see stories of such suffering. The cuts have savaged the support many, many people depended upon. If you watch this, I guarantee that the next time you see a tory MP stand there, claiming their cuts aren’t doing any damage and that it’s all being exaggerated, you will want to hurl something sharp and heavy at them. As the woman in the film says, the tories are treating people worse than animals.

A blog entry about something I didn’t watch

I didn’t watch last night’s debate; I didn’t see the pointgiven I’ve already posted my vote. To be honest, though, I didn’t want to. I’ve had enough. I knew I would just get angry, fly into a rage and start yelling at the television. That’s bad for me, and bad for the furniture. Besides, I know what’s going on: every day I come across reports on social media of the suffering the tories are causing; it’s also staggeringly clear what direction the tories want to take the country in. I just couldn’t stomach the sight of May standing there, lying her head off, trying to justify her actions. I also knew that she would try to cast Corbyn – a good, caring man – in the darkest of lights. So I’m sorry if this is a blog entry about something I didn’t watch and thus have no right to comment on, but these are my reasons for not watching it. In short, I felt as if I’d seen it all before.

Simply Trump

I must say I find this pure genius. I just came across it on Facebook. At first, I thought I was watching a genuine clip of Trump playing in a room full of children in front of the press – nothing abnormal for a politician. When he starts to play up more and more, refusing to get off his bouncing ball, I just burst out laughing. How did they make it? The actor on the ball looks so much like trump, but can’t be trump. At the same time, it is so in keeping with trump’s childish, infantile persona. It’s so great I just had to flag it up on here.

Wilson

I’m now the proud owner of a volleyball. My film-making friend Matt gave one to me over coffee this afternoon. Just coming off a six week shoot, he explained that camerapeople put volleyballs under cameras so they get more control over them. They had christened it Wilson, obviously in reference to Cast Away, and it had functioned as a kind of lucky charm. Now that the shoot was over, Wilson was going free, so Matt thought I might to have it. I accepted it gratefully; I’d heard before of such tricks used on film sets, but I was fascinated to hear a first hand account. You hear that all kinds of semi-ritualistic things go on behind the camera, so it’s cool to be allowed a glimpse of that world.

We didn’t do it!

For the record, I was not the person who hacked British airways, and nor did Lyn. We have enjoyed a lovely trip to Eltham to visit Marta. It’s been a splendid afternoon visiting a dear old friend, so we were both far too busy to commit any cybercrime. Sat out in her garden, catching up, exchanging news and gossip in a peaceful, pretty London suburb, the events of the world seemed miles away It had been ages since we had seen our former PA turned firm friend, so when L said she had invited us over for tea, I leapt at the chance. It turned out to be a perfect day, and a perfect alibi.

London comic con

Today London threw me one of it’s nice little surprises. It’s obviously gorgeous out there – easily the nicest, hottest day of the year so far – so I decided to go for a drive along the river and up to the dome. Certain things are still playing on my mind from yesterday, and I needed to think them through. Once up there, I decided to hop on to the Emirates cable car, simply because it had been ages since I’d done so, and I want to get to know the north side of the river a bit more.

Once up there, I began to notice something odd: there were lots of people in all kinds of strange costumes about. I trundled over to the Excel Centre, where the oddlydressed people seemed to be conglomerating, and I suddenly realised I had stumbled upon some sort of huge convention.

I was instantly fascinated. I’m still very much into that kind of fan culture, but I still think I need to explore other forms of it: I still want to find other narratives, beyond those of mainstream film and television, to get into. I decided to pay the twenty quid to get in, and put my Walter Benjamin hat on.

What I found in there was incredible: all sorts of stalls and exhibits about all kinds of narratives and franchises, most of which I had never heard of. It struck me how varied it was: rather than being about one specific narrative, as in a Star Trek convention for example, all kinds of franchises and their corresponding fandoms were on show, particularly manga. Thus I got the impression that this event was more about a form of culture than one specific text. I found it intriguing as an outside observer, wandering in off the street, as it were.

I stayed for about an hour, then set off home. Ii really need to look up some of what I saw; I can see myself getting into that kind of outsider culture. London has done it again: it has shown me something fascinating I wasn’t even looking for. But for now, the sun still beating down, it’s time to head back out into the city.

Communication Works 2017

Today was Communication Works 2017, and I think it’s fair to say that it has been quite a day. I got there nice and early, just as everyone was setting up their stalls. It was in a big sports hall, to one side of which were doors opening on to an area with a small shack. In there they were projecting short films, one of which was my Thousand Londoners film, as well as films by Post 16 students. Close by was a table with folders containing some of my writing. It was the manifestation of the exhibition idea I mentioned here, and I felt quite flattered to be featured so highly.

In the main hall were stalls exhibiting all sorts of the latest communications technology. It was incredibly interesting. I hadn’t been there long when my friend Matt arrived to help me film some of it. I’d had the idea of making a film on the event a few days ago; it seemed the best way for me to contribute. We spent a couple of hours getting footage of the stalls and exhibitors, as well as going in to some of the seminars. I think we now have the makings of an excellent film, which I’ll edit together soon.

Lyn popped in an hour or two into the event, and we had a fascinating time looking at everything. Mid-afternoon, the three of us popped out for a coffee; L and M stayed at the cafe, while I went back to see the event to it’s end. I just got home, rather tired and hot, but glad to have been, and excited what the communication world comes up with by next year.

Archer

Yesterday in the park we touched upon my liking for Bond, as we had just heard the sad news about Roger Moore. Chivon, who works at the cafe there, recommended an animated series called Archer. She said it was a bit of a Bond spoof, but it was very funny and she and her friends were into it in a big way. I just looked up the first episode on Youtube – I had to pay to watch it – and she was right. It isn’t a direct spoof of Bond in my opinion, but there are witty, knowing references. It is quite dirty, yet very clever indeed. I also find the style of animation very interesting indeed. When chivon said it was a cartoon, I was expecting something for children; archer definitely is not for kids, although not in the sense that South Park is a cartoon which isn’t for kids. I can certainly see myself getting into it. Before I comment on it much further, though, I better go watch more episodes.

Rest in peace Sir Roger Moore

Lyn and I just got in from a lovely long walk over to Greenwich. While out, though, I via my iPad learned of the sad death of Sir Roger Moore. I just want to note how sad I find this news: the opening of The Spy Who loved Me is one of my favourite pieces of film; and although I wasn’t especially taken with Moore’s Bond versus the others (see this entry), it is unarguably true that he helped make the series what it is. More to the point, today we have lost a fine actor and a great gentleman – a true legend. It seems only fitting that I direct you here, albeit with a heavy heart. Indeed, nobody did it better.

A despicable act

I think back to those moments when the curtain came down for the final time at the end of all the awesome gigs I’ve been to. There’s that feeling of elation at having been there; you feel so privileged, and vow to yourself never to forget it. It’s a special moment – I’m usually already trying to decide what to write on my blog. That’s what those guys in Manchester must have been feeling last night; wondering how best to get to the exit, and then the world suddenly becomes a chaos of screaming and panic.

How can anyone perform such an act? How can anyone intentionally cause such harm and distress on people so young? That’s what I don’t understand. They chose that very specific, unique moment after the gig had just come to an end, presumably to cause as much suffering as they could. Sometimes you simply have to despair at the depravity people are capable of.