Archive for August, 2003

Sunday, August 31st, 2003

Signs and wanders

This Brooklyn based photoblog I found to be very enjoyable indeedy.

Quirky, esoteric, an eye for the unexpected image all in a New York state of mind – the man has talent and I’ll be back.

Make me over in the clover

Saturday, August 30th, 2003

So far the typeface, background, colour of typeface, paragraph stucture, colour of comments box and my dancing persona have all been deemed in need of removal / change. As far as I can see that leaves just the blog title – though I can see that going for a burton any minute. Still I suppose that’s what happens when you ask for suggestions – people actually make them and then you get all twitchy and defensive like they have walked into your ensuite bondage chamber and criticised the colour of the leather or summat. Speaking purely hypothetically here of course as ensuite bondage chambers are not my thang I hasten to assure you dear reader – most definitely.

I’m feeling it’s important to point out that BnJ has been listed grade II on the register of blogs in need of aesthetic protection and as such cannot be altered willy nilly. Any alterations have to be done sympathetically and in keeping with the structure and style of the blog. UPVC cannot be used nor can synthetic materials of any kind be employed – so those pictures of Elton John’s syrup are definitely never going to appear here. Likewise only organic compost can be used to power the server upon which BnJ resides and this only from humanely treated plants that gave their lives willingly in the cause of free speech and general amusement.

So keep those makeover suggestions coming. I’ll put my ego on hold and then sit back and absorp the multi-faceted frenzy of aethetic cogitations whilst I contemplate my next move. Is it to be Verdana or Arial? #FFFFFF or #FF4040? 8 point or 10? contrast or harmony?…so many options…so many people to please. Anyone know David Hockney’s phone number?

A few of my favourite things – 10 off

Friday, August 29th, 2003


une bierre

deux bierre

trois bierre

Le Croissant du jour

Fi n chi

Chris baby

Stevie baby



Thursday, August 28th, 2003

The recent theft of a Leonardo painting from a Scottish Castle brings out the sharp contrast in the extremes of human motivation and perception. ‘Pearls before swine’ is a nice epigram for this. On the one hand there’s an object which is among the most prized human creations – revered as an example of beauty from the hand of an icon of western art. So prized that people are prepared to pay huge amounts of money to ‘own’ it. On the other hand are the machinations of thieving lowlife who know enough about the monetary pull of the object that they steal it and risk it’s damage or destruction. There’s a poetic angle to this. Reminds me of The Thomas Crown Affair – was a nice exposition of the exquisite tension and base motivations at work. The Pierce Brosnan character, I would say though, is pretty untypical of your average art thief. Multi millionaire tycoons with Caribbean hideaways and luscious bimbettes pursuant do not generally feel the need to resort to this sort of thing.

When you look at the painting that was stolen I think that the serenity of the image is very arresting. Leonardo was highly skilled in producing works with this power. His style is almost synonomous with the idealism of beauty and peace in renaissance art. There are several images in the collection of the National Gallery in London that have similar qualities. Most celebrated is the ‘Leonardo Cartoon’ – a detail of which is above [ I’m living dangerously reproducing this but what good would a piece about art be without images eh? – and the thrill of art theft is upon me – hence the heavy linkage to assuage any vexatious copyright enforcement from the NG…I hope (quiver) ] The Cartoon was damaged some years ago by a disturbed individual who fired a pistol at it. Now restored, it is displayed in a softly lit shrine behind bullet proof glass and thousands pass through to pay homage every year. I like to go and spend some time in there every now and again and just study the lightness and mastery of the lines, the expert composition, the earthiness of the ochre coloured lines against the cream parchment give the drawing an ethereal quality that takes you out of your everyday plane to a more harmonious and contented state [ who needs drugs man? ]. More than anything the gentle beauty, the expressions, connect in some way with your soul. Leornardo knew what he was doing – the castle raiders don’t.

Make your mind up time

Wednesday, August 27th, 2003

” and now you really gotta burn it up, and make another fly by night

get a run for your money, and take a chance

and it’ll turn out right

and when you see how its gotta be, you’re making your mind up.”

How crap are these lyrics?

The whole Bucks Fizz scenario is deeply disturbing.

Robert Alan Gubby (‘Bobby G’ to afficionados) is the only remaining original member of the funky combo that won the Eurovision Song Contest in 1981. Bobby Baby, who is now looking a tad elderly beside his fellow Fizzers – (all second or third generation cloned replacements) – has a penchant for white outfits and permatan.

“David Van Day’s Bucks Fizz Show” – a rival Bucks Fizz outfit featuring David Burger Van Day also includes a fair degree of orange tinted saggy flesh. Why do they do this to themselves?

Anyway, ‘where is this leading?’, I hear you groan. Well today has been a day full of indecision. Nothing gets to me more than people who make a big song and dance about having their own way. Insisiting that things are arranged according to their exact requirements and then – just as you are about to fullfil their requirements they change their mind about what is what they had insisted on in the first place. What was so crucially important now becomes the thing they least want. This tends to really annoy me – especially when these people attempt to mask their pathetic indecision by trying to suggest that I got their requirements wrong or somehow misunderstood the psychic messages they were sending me that strangely contradicted completely the written specification they had signed as being what they wanted. Why can’t people make their minds up and then stick to it? I am in danger of alienating large sections of my readership here but I am finding that there is a definite sex differentiation when it comes to changing minds – guess which group does it more often – men or women? This makes me think that the whole ‘choose a course and stick to it’ thing is a male construct aimed at organising the world in a structured and controlled way. Changing the ground rules is far too subtle for most men. If it involves ripping off items of clothing though that’s another matter entirely.

Excuses excuses

Tuesday, August 26th, 2003

…more juicy bits tomorrow when I can keep my eyelids open

Farewell 192!Those new directory enquiry services – drD's cut out n keep guide

Monday, August 25th, 2003

With the demise of 192 a range of new services become available to greatly improve the choices and service available to you the victim. Choosing the right directory enquiry service is a simple matter. You simply need to consider a few basic considerations before considering which choice of new service to use. This handy guide should make that process even easier – why not cut it out and evostik it to your thigh?

118 999 – Use this number when you need your number in a hurry – charged at £34 a second – we guarantee to answer your call within 1 second [ subject to availability and traffic conditions on the ringroad ] and to wear a green uniform when doing so.

118 118 118 118 118 118 etc etc – Great for when you can’t remember the second set of digits – just dial once and press the redial button ever after. If you can’t remember the first set of digits think of ’11’ ie a man with spindly legs – Michael Barrymore, for example, then add a fat lady such as er Rosanne Barr before the plastic surgery and then you have 118 – easy!

118 666 – A useful service for Satanists and others with evil intent. Charged at $6.66 per minute. All calls routed to our Transylvanian callcentre.

118 121 – We will not only find your number but connect you to a serious prospect of marriage [ press 1 after the tone ] or casual sex [ press #*! ]

0800 118 – This is a free number [ a call queuing system is in operation between 7am and 6.59am – queue charged at 5p per second ]

118 100 – Ask the operator to look up a number in her phonebook – phone between 10am and 3pm and ask for Phyllis – make her an offer.

118 747 – Calls may be kept in a holding pattern over west London.

118 222 – Have your number dialled by an eastern european ballerina.

118 101 – Get the number you most fear.

118 mc2 – Directory enquiries for the very clever.

192 – Forget it – far too simple transparent and cheap.

Extracting the effluent

Sunday, August 24th, 2003

Yesterday I was at Gatwick Airport. Like most of the airports in this country it is a sad reflection on our ability to showcase our abilities in architecture and to provide a fitting environment to greet people who visit the country. Essentially a utilitarian shed with a tacky shopping mall elbowed in to every available space; the airport has the usual mass of confusing yellow signage – most of it arrogantly in English only, inaudible public address anouncements all of them in English only and thousands of people moving hither and thither – most of them not English or British. As I had some time to kill I decided to carry out a little retail research by buying a newspaper – half of which was missing but they still insisted on charging me the full price claiming that the saturday supplements were ‘free extras’ – only they had none left. [ yeah right ] I bought an expensive coffee – served by Italians for that authentic Italo-Sussex experience – Matteo was very kind, offering to sprinkle chocolate on it – all for £2.75. I then went to have a look at the Virgin Music store – offering “2 CDs for £20” like this is some kind of bargain summer offer. Is it just me or does Fifty Cent look like a well cured side of smoked bacon on his album cover? After shelling out £5.60 for an hour’s parking I left this ‘gateway to Britain’ several pounds lighter but not before inhaling deeply the stale urine stench in the car park stairway – do they use a special paint for these places that stinks of piss or is there some kind of secret subculture whose role it is to seek out freshly built stairways and scent mark them to ward off other passing incontinents from their territory? Kuala Lumpur has a micro rainforest in it’s airport. Singapore has huge expanses of walkways lounges and shops. Hong Kong has a stunning 21st Century Norman Foster building on a man made island. We have piss soaked carparks and tacky rip off shops. That’d be right.

Bat burger anyone? Would you like fries with that?

Encore du vin

No more excuses – it’s time to crack open the red wine – you need those polyphenols – they’re very good for you – enjoy.

I’m currently going through a Shiraz phase myself.

(at least) Five interesting motorway factettes

Saturday, August 23rd, 2003

1. The M1, Britain’s first major motorway was opened on 2nd November 1959 by then Minister for Transport Ernest Marples. The ceremony took place at Slip End, Toddington. When traffic waiting at the junction to be among the first to travel on the M1 hurtled down the slip road Marples exclaimed. “My God, what have I started!” My God indeed. Some people were very pleased when the motorway opened.

2. 27 years later the M25, London’s orbital motorway was opened by a bossy woman with a handbag. The concept of an orbital road around the capital had been discussed since the Royal Commission on London Traffic in 1905.

3. The 70 mph speed limit on motorways was introduced in 1965. Prior to this people drove at whatever speed they fancied. Not much has changed then.

4. The highest motorway in Britain is to be found on the Lancashire section of the M62 which reaches an elevation 1220 feet close to the county boundary. The M62 is a spectacular route in places with some beatifully elegant bridges. Near Rishworth in West Yorkshire the east and westbound carriageways diverge around a small farm which now lies surrounded by thundering vehicles night and day – a poetic testimony to one man’s protest during the motorway planning when he refused to sell out and move.

5. The A64(M), part of the Leeds Inner Ring Motorway, is arguably Britain’s shortest motorway at 550 metres in length. The longest motorway is the M6 at 362km.

Motorway geek heaven

5 things to do on the motorway

Friday, August 22nd, 2003

1. Use your indicator to make other drivers aware of your intentions –

remember: mirror > signal > manouevre not

manouevre > mirror > obscene hand gesture

2. When leaving the motorway get into the left lane in good time – not 15 seconds after you’ve overtaken a Volvo in the OVERTAKING lane.

3. Remember Volvos are generally driven by over 45s who lack the confidence for racy behaviour. Their natural habitat is the centre lane, they probably have symmetrically arranged ornaments above their fireplace and feel the urge to vote Liberal Democrat. This is reality so deal with it – these people need to be undertaken if there is a flash tosser in the OVERTAKING lane.

4. Take regular breaks and if you are thinking of stopping at a service station come with plenty of cash and a cast iron stomach. This book – now out of print – seemed a great way to avoid the unWelcome Break.

5. Imagine you are being followed by you. Would you feel threatened / annoyed / intimidated / in danger?

If any of these change the way you drive.