Thursday 4 March 2010


Tomorrow I hope to be at the Iraq Inquiry to watch Gordon Brown explain away why British soldiers gave up their lives fighting in Iraq. My ticket appears to have been lost in the post, but hopefully I will still be able to find a way is an issue that I am very passionate about - don't get me started. If I'm not marched away to the cells I'll let you know how it goes....if you haven't read it in the newspaper first.

Onto less serious things.

If you like superheroes, like the cinema, do visit 'My Life as I see it' and join in the fun. Tony has asked me to do a guest blog, which should be posted on Monday...but other guest bloggers are coming up beforehand.

And finally. These two links are quite and here I love the power of modern technology. You may recognise someone half way through....of course it would be great if the BBC could encourage people to buy a licence in the same way, but until then, I'll be glued to Swedish TV

Monday 1 March 2010

A cultured life

There's culture and there's culture. There's also the mould that grows on a petri dish...that's the sort of culture I tend to find in the boy's bedroom when I brave going through the door to retrieve plates of half-eaten food that have been hidden under the bed for days, weeks, and I suspect months. I've tried banning food and drink from going upstairs, but really when the boy is killing a million aliens on the X-Box, it seems completely unreasonable for me to prevent him from re-energising. I just wish that he could summon up the energy to carry plates downstairs afterwards.

We've been doing culture too. Proper culture. Last weekend we went to a fortieth birthday party. The boy and some friends were along too....their disapproving looks at my Dad dancing were to be expected. This wasn't just any 40th though. This was a Whitechapel Art Gallery party. Yes disco dancing in the presence of Art. Real art. We drank delicious cocktails in the presence of "Where Three Dreams Cross: 150 Years of Photography from India, Pakistan and Bangladesh". I'm sure they were very good. We're all sure the pictures were very good. But we didn't really look. We should have as we gathered initially in the exhibition space. But then we went upstairs and drank more whilst dancing to tunes we had all pre-selected. I wanted to girate to Kylie or Soft Cell, but couldn't resist The Raconteurs....Broken Boy Soldier I cleared the dance floor, and my track was taken off well before the final chord. Uncultured lot.

Staying with an eastern theme, on Friday it was Taal night. This was put on by the School's Budhist, Hindu, Sikh and Muslim Society. The boy had a starring role - as the love interest of an Indian girl who has to go through an arranged marriage. It's a very hot topic....but in a script written by a couple of the pupils, they handled it both with sensitivity and humour....although I'm sure some of the jokes were pretty close to being censored! And indeed some were certainly racist...Indian mothers and fathers were the butt of many jokes. And it was a very full-on production...putting the best Bollywood productions to shame....well that may be a slight exageration, but I'm allowed to be a little biased There was a cast of 60...and given that for a couple of set-pieces where everyobe was on stage, it was a little cramped. The music was brilliant...I was so impressed with both the boys and girls who had put so much effort into excellent way to spend a Friday night. The boy played his part well...but felt a certain uneasiness with the 'I've been so wronged' scene...the bitter anger and diappointment he conveyed seemed strangely reminiscent of a recent argument at home....

But enough of the East, on Saturday it was off to the west. The wild wild west. A fundraising dinner and dance on behalf of the NSPCC. I looked my finest in my check shirt, 'kerchief, stetson and boots....and was praised mighty highly for for my lassooing action on the dance floor. To eat we had sausages, beans and baked potatoes. They were real authentic....the sausages were near charcoal, the potatoes had turned to mush and the beans...well the beans. Oh my word the beans. I've been told they were cooked over a period of several days. There was some line dancing. But not much. But plenty of Hi Ho Silver Lining. I'd tell you more. But that tequila's a deadly thing......