Monthly Archives: February 2008

The wheels of captialism are starting to turn…

So I had my first proper business meeting today with a guy called Kevin and my friend Joe to discuss the starting of aforementioned grassroots record label. I don’t want to say too much about it here, partly because I don’t want people stealing my ideas before I implement them and partly because I’m scared the everything could fall apart and I’d look pretty stupid in my guise as Record Company Mogul (which reminds me, I must obtain a large cigar from somewhere).

Still I’m in the process of escaping from my employer which can only be a good thing. I’ll happily pimp my label some more when I have some content to sell you.

Sweded

I’m not sure if anyone has seen be Kind rewind yet but it seems to have kick started a whole Youtube craze for ‘sweded’ movies. If your not familiar with the term or the film, Jack Black’s character accidently erases a whole shop full of videotapes meaning that he and Mos Def have to recreate them all from scratch. They rationalise this to their customers by telling them that the new tapes come from Sweden (hence the dramatic change in quality).

Check out a sweded version of the films trailer:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-B0dJQ35rDs

and a sweded version of The Shining:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I2unsGNFdts

Dead at 25, alive at 26?

Crisis possibly averted. I’m going to start my own record label.

Okay I’m going to TRY to start my own label. It’s an idea thats been floating around my head for a while now. I do a little bit of DJing, it saves my soul from the office grind. It also puts me in to contact with real musicians. People who now how to sing. In this day and age of mp3 downloads, I figure I can publish these people with very small overheads (since it’s an mp3 label, (at least initially) there won’t be the troublesome costs associated with CD and record manufacture).

It’s going to be called Maiku. I bought the domain name on a mad whim and now I’m going to do somehting with it. maiku.co.uk is currently under construction but if anything happens thats where it will be.

N.B. This plan assumes I can find enough people willing to let a complete novice attempt to promote their undoubted genius.

My secrets

Whilst I waiting my own Tyler Durden or Dagmar Bellinghausen to liberate me from my live to work existence I thought I’d share some other things with you.

Some of my secrets, (or at least things that you wouldn’t necessarily know about me even if you knew me in the flesh or had me listed as a facebook friend):

– I have been gathering material for a book about tea for the last half a decade but I not sure if I will ever finish it

– I invent imaginary lives for complete strangers who sit next to me on buses

– I once (by negligence) killed or at least critically wounded my ex-boss’s dog. It choked on a badge that came unclipped from my bag as the boss in question was terminating my employment. The dog disappeared whilst still choking and the boss in question didn’t even notice, despite my concern.

– Exactly one year ago today a relationship I was in began to unravel irrevocably (I wasn’t going to mention it but since I’m in a confessional mood today I thought I should).

– Secretly I love happy endings, despite my occasional gloomy disposition

– I habour violent thoughts about destroying the office scanner with a baseball bat, whilst listening to Rage Against The Machine. I sometimes wonder how many people in my office would notice…

– One of my private fantasies is of giving flowers to a stranger for no reason other than to make them feel better about the world

Thats a fairly mixed bag both good and bad, I’m not sure what my no-longer secrets say about me. I hope they don’t make me seem callous or unkind. I use irony to defend myself and i’m not sure that is always such a good plan

Musings on a post-slacker culture

In my pervious entry I mentioned Generation X and it’s author Douglas Coupland. For those that haven’t read it, Couplands novel was a backlash against the grasping materialism of yuppiedom and a trawl through nineties counter-culture. It was (although I hate to use the phrase) a ‘slacker’ novel. The central idea was that opting out of consumer society was almost an ethical choice. One that resonates with me, even though I’m too young to remember yuppies properly. One chapter is entitled Shopping is Not Creating and confirms a mantra from another ninties novel, Fight Club "You are not your job, you are not your bank balance"

But what now? It’s 2008 and everyone has a mobile phone, not just the city bankers. Is it time for something else? A post-slacker culture. Is it possible to be fulfilled spiritually whilst working for a multinational? I’m struggling careerwise. I have had low wage McTemping Jobs for too long but I can’t see that earning more money would make me happier. I have more questions than answers. Can anyone tell me of any genuinely fulfilling career paths (other than those which require additional training such Doctor/Nurse) which lead to an ethical life?

Happy Singles Awarness Day!

So feb 14th – I’m not a fan to be honest. When I was in a relationship it was a monetary guilt trip. Now I’m single it’s a existential guilt trip. Still it’s not all doom and gloom. I have a large bottle of single malt and a cutting edge collection of indie and alternative songs to show for my mid to late twenties.

To use more lyrics in my blog:

Not everything must end
Not every romance must descend
Not every lover’s pact decays
Not every sad mistake replays – Arab strap (one of their happier songs)

I’m feeling very Generation X tonight since I’m on the verge of Quitting My Job (dead at 25 buried at 80 and all that, go and read the book if you have no idea what I’m on about). I’m not sure what I should do next. If anyone has any ideas they should get in touch through the usual channels.

Sorry – alcohol plus wiblog equates with bad grammar and wanton honesty.

In which we discuss the nature of Ikea, take a walk in the hills and avoid responsibilities.

"Step inside
A better dream job you could never find
A set of keys and bottles heaven wide
Find yourself a seat and settle in for the ride" – The Delgados

I’ve taken some time off work recently. Mainly because I have too much mental furniture in need of rearrangement. My head feels like an Ikea warehouse. Ranks of flatpacked possibilities waiting to be constructed. My eyes however, are tired and my limbs ache. Yesterday in order to facilitate this reconstruction, I took a walk in the Peak District with my housemate and his girlfriend. The area of the Peaks we went to was the Cheshire area (south of Greater Manchester). We could see the contrails of jet aircraft lining the skies, all running parallel like roads held aloft before vectoring inwards and downwards on Manchester airport. There were no clouds. We had gone to see the deer at Lyme park but the enclosure was closed until March. A sign said that deer were culled during the winter months to prevent disease amongst the population, but the presence of venison meat on the menu of the cafe implied that the deer were shot for more fiscal reasons.

Last sunday I went to Chester to see a friends band play. Afterwards they attempted to recruit me as a blues harmonica player. I need to practice a little first but it could be good. I’m think of retraining as a proof reader/copy editor because it would hopefully be more fulfilling than my McJob. Hence I’m bunking off work again in order to avoid responsibilites.

Sunday afternoon reflections

As some of my new found facebook friends know, I am currently not getting anywhere near enough sleep, due to mild insomnia (which is in turn aided and abetted by my currently nocturnal social life). I feel like my body is in a state of disrepair and I have gone mildly (and hopefully temporarily) deaf in one ear.

So it’s the first sunday of what might eventually turn out to be Spring. The park is brightly lit but somewhat chilly. The joggers are wearing a few less layers and there seem to be more birds in the skies than before. Spring always comes with Lent, traditionally a time when we beat ourselves up over our vices in the name of religious nostalgia. I think thats why I prefer to do something semi practical like learn a new skill over Lent to remind myself that I can always change. I learnt to juggle a few years ago for instance (and then immediately forgot how a few months later). This year I’m trying to do something creative everday instead – as mentioned below. I haven’t done anything yet that I’m particularly proud of but I’m getting there.

Personal Archeology

So I spent the weekend back in Yorkshire. My parents had asked me to sort through my accumulated belongings and sorting them into two piles the "Keep" pile and the "Obliterate" pile. It was a simultaneously cathartic, nostalgic and odd experience. Amongst the relics, the following discoveries are worth noting:

Russian text books. I actually used to be able to speak some Russian (until year 9).

For a brief period of time (circa 2003) I sported a vaguely Dr John Dorian (from Scrubs)esque quiff of hair. It lasted for one summer. I use the word vague in it’s strongest possible sense here.

A faded photo of an ex-girlfriends ex-cat. I have no idea what it was doing there amongst the piles of photos but it was there.

A plethora of 8-bit computer magazines from the Golden era of Videogames.

An excerpt from a Noir I was writing aged 17 (suprisingly competently written too)

One robot

I’m nearly 27 and those possessions are the ones that mainly stood the test of time. Thats a sobering thought.