Wednesday, March 31, 2004

Do you have a socks drawer?
This guy does. And you can see the drawer and his socks and more or less everything else in his house.

There isn't much in my house that isn't also in everyone else's house, and precious little that's not visible to the casual visitor, but almost everyone I've spoken to sees this project as either an incredible intrusion, or as an invitation to be robbed.

Whereas, these other people bought a house, got told by the previous renter that she was leaving a whole load of stuff behind (and I MEAN a whole load), and they're documenting the truly fascinating hoard houseful gallimaufry stuff.
Those of you who know me will know that for the past couple of months I've been having a pre-relationship, happy taking-it-slowly period with a lovely guy called Josh. Last night we went to a pub for a drink and he was quite quiet, and then told me... well, he's called it off.


He was lovely, he is lovely, but he called it off. I'm shellshocked. Depressed again. I'll have him as a friend which will be difficult and great, but for the past weeks I've been telling myself that I'm not really deeply into him, but that I wanted to be, with time. I was more deeply into him than I thought... no surprise there. I'm human. But we went back to his place for coffee and TV and... after a while I had to leave, thought I'd cry, haven't yet.

3 years of being single, because I'm picky and they're posers, and then I meet someone who I think is special and who thinks I'm special, who wants something. And I'm not blaming him. He told me, he was honest, he wasn't even slightly nasty. But it just stops. Again. 3 years.

It just stops. :o(

Monday, March 29, 2004

Childrens' books
Is it just me, or are the books I learned to read with really Freudian? "Play with us." "Things we like." "Look at this."

Foul. FOUL!
Sondre Lerche
Sondre Lerche is... what? 21? Yes, 21. Maybe Norwegian but we're not sure because he sings in uninflected English. And he's brilliant.

"I'd proved I could write tidy, well-crafted pop songs. I wanted to challenge myself more and to write songs that were less predictable in structure and more relaxed. I think the songs are intrinsically richer and more diverse. But I tried to give them space to breathe. I wanted to let the air fill the songs. So I made it a bit more minimalist."

But not minimal. Oh no. He's sort of like some Beatles stuff, except not. I don't know what the name for this music is. But I think I want the album. s.
Another one...
It's not much, but it's the latest rough copy of a little poem which might get bigger. Comments, anyone? [Adobe PDF]

Saturday, March 27, 2004

Strap On
The subject-matter is entirely prosaic to me, but the fact the guy's straight and a drily comedic writer makes it hilarious. :o)

Taking a foreign object in your ass is like shitting in rewind. Having a good poo can be really satisfying, but the other direction is fucking terrifying, at least at first. There's a definite fear of making a mess you'll never be able to forget.

One man's experience with a dildo. Moulded from his own dick.

Friday, March 26, 2004

You know when... link isn't enough to blog with, and then you find a few more that make it worthwhile? :o)

delve - a mag filled with crazy sexy disturbing cool graphics. Sewers have balls, too. The Plain English Campaign doesn't like 'basically' or 'at the end of the day' among others. News that 24 will soon be a comic (!!yay!!) over at Bookslut. World of Awesomeness. The arse end of Gotham.

Wednesday, March 24, 2004

Violation of sepulchre
That's what two teenagers in Edinburgh, Scotland are charged with. They allegedly broke into a 1600s mausoleum and played with a corpse.

When the police arrived at Greyfriars graveyard, they found four coffins, one of which had been smashed, and the head of the corpse removed. A 14-year-old girl told the court that Sonny Devlin said "they had taken a head from someone that was dead at the graveyard". At Greyfriars, he pulled out a head from behind a gravestone and at one point, was "chucking it around" with another youth or youths. Another witness, a 15-year-old girl, said Sonny Devlin and his co-accused had been "mucking about" with the head "... making it talk to him". [BBC]

The charge hasn't been brought before the courts since 1899.

Christopher Gane, professor in Scots law at Aberdeen University, said: "It is fascinating that this charge has been indicted in the High Court. "The last case recorded in our law reports was in 1899 when a gentleman called William Coutts had six charges of violation of sepulchre laid against him. He was the superintendent of Nellfield Cemetery, a private graveyard on the Great Western Road in Aberdeen, and the background to the case was that he was accused of digging up coffins and reselling the lairs for other burials." Prof Gane added: "The law of theft does not apply to a human body that has been interred, as in the eyes of the law a body that has been buried for some time does not count as ?property? for the purpose of stealing." [The Scotsman]
US: An Oregon County bans all marriage
Because it was due to start issuing marriage licenses of gay couples, and amid a deluge of American lawsuits arguing for and against gay marriage, Benton County has stopped issuing marriage licenses until the State decides on what is legal and what isn't.

This is really interesting, because since straights don't get to marry either until resolution, it could mean any one of the following:

1. The State does not want to suspend gay marriages while allowing straight licenses to be issued and therefore be discriminatory in law;
2. The State does not want to be *seen* to be discriminatory, and while actually wishing to ban gay marriage only, it bans straight marriages for a time so that when gay marriage licenses are withdrawn completely, it can point to fairness of process;
3. The State ultimately intends to uphold gay marriage licenses and is currently withdrawing all leave to marry so that it can make a decision without gangs of screaming poofs outside - action which would only in the end be seized on by the anti-gay lobby as evidence of coercion.

So it's a very clever move. But as well as that, for the first time ever in such a legal minefield, a State has effectively said "Since we need to decide whether gays can marry at the moment, you straight people can't get married either until this is solved, and if you don't like that, go somewhere else with your rings". Window-dressing, or a real step forward?

Monday, March 22, 2004

Legal Aid crisis?
Or just unrealistic expectations from law graduates? UK Citizens' Advice Bureaux are in a panic because they can't find enough trainee solicitors to provide legal aid to poorer citizens. This is becase only a small percentage of trainee solicitors are considering a career in the field. These young solicitors are 'deterred by student debt and poor pay'.

25,000 pounds a year is poor pay?! Listen, boys and girls. When I started off as a journalist in London, I had student debt and bank debt and was paid 12,500 gross. *That* was poor pay. Especially for London. But here in Northern Ireland, that salary would be quite alright for even a junior civil servant.

Law graduates have been told by their schoolteachers and professors that they 'should' get a salary of around 40,000 quid. And the survey the linked article cites shows that they've been told this so much, they believe that they'll get it with nothing more than a mortarboard.

Perhaps they should take a look at reality which dictates that you start your career on lower pay than you'll get when you've been working for a while. I certainly don't think that 25,000 is bad pay, even in London, and when you know you'll be getting anything upwards of 40-45,000 when you hit a large commercial firm... they should really stop groaning. Especially when legal representation for those who are *really* poor is at stake.

Sunday, March 21, 2004

Unorthodox use of a Moleskine notebook!
Unreasonable girl....
...or unreasonable debt? A female student auctioned her virginity online to cut down on uni debt. She had traumatising sex (not least because it was with a man and she's lesbian) and was given just over 8,000 quid.

Stupid girl? Outrageous debt levels? Attention-seeking? Life of debt-ridden misery avoided? Justly desperate? What do you think?

Wednesday, March 17, 2004

Think of...
...van Gogh. And what do you think of? Sunflowers, I bet. Or a wood-and-wicker chair you're never quite sure if you've really seen, or just seen a photo of. That'll be because it's famous. To paraphrase the poetic Donald Rumsfeld, I know I don't know whether or not I've seen the chair painting for real. I know it. I just don't know it... I don't know.


Anyway. This painting, by van Gogh, you know you don't know, and therefore in future you'll know that you don't know it. OK, OK, I'll stop now. [grin] It's a rare example of Japonaiserie - artist working in particular style apes another style. It's really amazing. Layered. Like looking through a lace curtain into fog, or through drifting smoke. I found it on the marvellous Van Gogh Gallery which on first look seems immersive and comprehensive.

A locomotive emerges from a fireplace. Time Transfixed, by Magritte, jpg copyright Art Institute of ChicagoThere's also a Bosch Universe website. Surreal and disturbing work - and that's just the website. Why the hell does a site about such an interesting and compelling painter have to play uselessly with scripting and layout which doesn't work in the majority of browsers? A really shitty design which stopped me from seeing any actual works unless I used IE. Let all your visitors see the content. Please. Stupid people.

However - [Pete rubs hands] - there is visible and ever-so-nearly *graspable* treasure aplenty at the Art Institute of Chicago. Browse through the collections online, and read the helpful and unpatronising notes on each exhibit. (This one made me shiver. Really.)

The Smithsonian Institution is a place I know very little about. When I think of it, I think of a massive collection of riches exhibited in grand old buildings. But I knew nothing much about it until now [quote from the site]:

In 1826, James Smithson, a British scientist, drew up his last will and testament, naming his nephew as beneficiary. Smithson stipulated that, should the nephew die without heirs (as he would in 1835), the estate should go 'to the United States of America, to found at Washington, under the name of the Smithsonian Institution, an establishment for the increase and diffusion of knowledge among men.'

Looking at the Library of Congress' Built in America database (database? hah! - unimaginably rich and exhaustive descriptions, histories and photos, more like!) for the original buildings, it certainly seems important and historical enough. But modern? Yeah, modern and accessible too. Surf the site. 'Tis good. :o) [I neglected to mention here on first posting that the Enola Gay is exhibited by the Smithsonian and very little mention isi made of its war role. Shame.]

MOMA's website has gems like this Seurat, and, because I need more coffee, here are the rest: A List Apart, Newtopia, an article about why Microsoft are lying liars, and how trainee vets practise putting their arms up a cow's anus.
St Patrick's Day
Not that I care a great deal; born in Wales, St Patrick was kidnapped by Irish raiders when he was 16 which is far more interesting than any celebrations - if true.

Iin America, where today has always been an excuse for big celebrations, the Chicago River, which is spanned by 45 movable bridges, is dyed green every year in honour.

(AP Photo - Brian Kersey)

Monday, March 15, 2004

Oh, my... goodness
Right. If any of you have anything against this picture, I didn't make it. Via, via two-twenty, via The Minor Fall, The Major Lift. (Also today - the Gay Porn Blog which is NSFW - Ban gay books!)

Sunday, March 14, 2004

Grand Central Station
Bet you didn't know about the little things, because the article was published 2 days before 9/11 and would therefore have been overlooked or forgotten. And I bet you didn't know that the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel has its own Grand Central 'Presidential' Platform.
State Secrets
UK-based Military and Intelligence sites.

And some of the people who use them.

Spying on the UN. Tsk tsk.

Going for your job interview at the NSA. (PDF - 137kb)

Saturday, March 13, 2004

Chris Rock?
Does anyone know who Chris Rock is? I don't, but apparently the man's famous and knows loads of other famous people. This girl was given his old mobile number on a new phone, and got lots of phonecalls from famous people as a result. It's funny. :o)

Now, who the fck is Chris Rock??

Oh, I found out. He's a comedian turned actor who's had awards and emmys and everything. Uninteresting, but still funny. After all, it's not about Chris Rock, but the people who call 'him'. Heheh. :o)

Friday, March 12, 2004

Their only accomplishment
The Exorcist
In 30 seconds.

With bunnies.

Thursday, March 11, 2004

TV Genius
The superb pimp&ho. Poof Jonny Pimp and tranny Honey Ho are costars. I love this so much.

Monday, March 08, 2004

Freedom of dominion
To say
freedom rules"
is always
a mistake
or even
a lie:

does not rule

[Erich Fried, Vorübungen für Wunder - Freiheit herrscht nicht - Preliminary Exercises for Miracles - Freedom does not rule - trans. (c) 1999 Marc Beiser, Peter Doughty, Lena Nievers]

This is part of a translation of 'Preliminary Exercises for Miracles' which was completed for me as a birthday gift by Marc and Lena, who then asked me to collaborate with them on a reworking of their manuscript. This manuscript is, to my knowledge, the only complete English translation in existence of Fried's final volume of poetry.
Someone did a google search about Donna Tartt's The Secret History the other day, which pointed to this site. All well and good. The woman, after all, is a literary goddess who works like crazy to produce one novel every 10 years or so.

But the search terms were:

"Donna Tartt ebook Secret History"


BUY it, you f***er!!

Saturday, March 06, 2004

It is worth recording, dammit!
Organ Fireworks XGramophone, which is possibly the world's best classical music monthly, reviewed in this month's issue a disc from Hyperion called "Organ Fireworks X" (meaning volume 10) which my brother bought me for my birthday.

I love the disc, but Gramophone says that apart from a superb rendition of Liszt's Ad nos, most of the repertoire wasn't worth recording, and that soloist Christopher Herrick's registration (choice of stops to make a particular sound) relies far too much on horizontal reeds.

(An organ contains 'flues' - pipes which make their sound like recorders do, by the air striking a 'lip' and then reverberating in a tube of a certain length - and 'reeds' - pipes which make their sound like oboes or saxophones do, by the air passing through a metal reed which oscillates, again causing reverberation in a tube of a certain length. All pipes are usually mounted vertically, but horizontal reeds are unusually loud and 'snappy' and have a very powerful sound because they are pointed directly towards the listener.)

I'll come to Gramophone's criticism later. Let's get to the disc.

It is recorded on the new French-Canadian-built Létourneau organ in the Winspear Centre in Edmonton, Canada. (You can hear the instrument online (Realplayer - thanks to MPR's 'Pipedreams'), played by the same soloist, Christopher Herrick, in the inaugural recital he gave around the time he recorded the CD there.)

The concert hall from the organ platformTo start with, the instrument (all 6,551 pipes of it) sounds glorious. I've played a *much* smaller instrument by the same builder, and, in a way, that gave me a firsthand ability to foresee the quality of pretty much anything they would build in the future, and hearing this instrument I'm not disappointed. The hall is large and its auditorium, which was designed by the same people who did Symphony Hall in Birmingham, UK, has an acoustic which is clean and focused, but warm and just reverberant enough to give music room to breathe and mature. But this must all take a close second place to the musicality of the soloist. And on this disc, it does.

Herrick's programme is varied as usual, and on this disc he concentrates mainly on flashy toccatas and jazz-inspired works before finishing with an emotionally perfect rendition of Liszt's towering Fantasia and fugue on a theme by Meyerbeer, "Ad nos, ad salutarem undam".

The organ case looking up from the keyboardsDealing with this first, it is a work which is not often recorded because it's technically difficult to play and takes a lot of physical and emotional stamina, as well as an instrument which can do it justice. Herrick phrases the music carefully, and his choice of sounds fits the emotional content like a glove at all times: the light, glittering statements of the theme in the first section, the celestial whispering of the quietest, most beautiful flutes in the middle and the godlike, thunderous statement of the chorale in the triumphant and shattering final bars. Every note's placement is carefully chosen, even down to the precise articulation of every last pedal crotchet. At all times the different timbres and layers of sound so characteristic of Liszt are clearly distinguished and, as in every other track on the disc, the musicality of the soloist and the care of Hyperion's sound engineers shine through.

It's a disc worth buying for that piece alone, as Gramophone said. But the other repertoire - not worth recording? Yes, most of it has been recorded before, but Mons Leidvin Takle's Blues-Toccata certainly deserves a place on disc. Herrick's interpretation makes me smile, his rhythmic swinging chords jumping jazzily around like saxophonist gazelle, his choice of the (otherwise blistering) 32' pedal reed alone to underpin a quieter passage with a surprisingly gentle rasping staccatissimo utterly convincing.

David Johnson's Trumpet Tune in G comes from a stable of similar pieces by this composer, and a Gramophone review of one of its companions previously recorded by Herrick described that rendition as "harmless". Certainly this one is too, but not unentertaining - and in the middle section the trumpet is given a rest while some flutes and a *beautiful* French cornet take up the theme's development. Indeed, while capable of musical universality, I think the instrument even imparts a quintessentially Canadian-Gallic frisson to the above-mentioned Liszt - and it works too.

Duruflé's dark, sinister Toccata from Suite (Op. 5), which I'm listening to now, is edgy and nervous in Herrick's hands. Not a horizontal trumpet in sight, he employs a registration which has a shine, but one of threatening gunmetal rather than the brightest silver. His phrasing stabs at the air. Apparently the composer used to refuse to play or record this in later life, as if it awoke painful memories. A flashy toccata it might be, but so inwardly brooding that it makes you think of the desperate faked smile of the person who's really in the grip of a dark night of the soul.

Joseph Bonnet's Matin Provençal from Poèmes d'Automne (Op. 3) opens with a tinkling registration (melliflous flutes in semiquaver arpeggios hovering in the middle of a gentle carillon of bells) which immediately makes you think of sparkling water struck by dappled sunlight. Slowly the camera rises through the trees: the sunlight brightens as the orb emerges over the horizon, and finally we see the treetops stretching far out into the landscape as the introductory arpeggios clang out in fortissimo to celebrate the wonder of a new dawn. Herrick is deply in the veins of this music as in most other performances he's ever given, and the piece might equally be a poem about the blossoming of love, such is the feeling of ecstasy you get at the end - certainly not just an excuse to trot out the organ's bells, as Gramophone implies.

So in short - ignore Gramophone and buy this disc for everything on it! Five stars out of four. Well done, Chris. :o)
Where's my gay anarchy?
"It's anarchy," some guy named Rick Forcier, of the Washington state chapter of the Christian Coalition, actually whined. "We seem to have lost the rule of law. It's very frightening when every community decides what laws they will obey." Why, yes, Rick. It's total anarchy. Just look at all the screaming and the bloodshed and the gunfire. Run and hide, Rick. The gay people in love are coming.


Friday, March 05, 2004

Sex, abuse and the internet
I've read one report today (and I can't remember where it is), and this one, which both highlight the dangers posed to children by, supposedly, the internet. The linked report from the BBC is about a Northern Ireland charity report into the hazards the net poses for juvenile users.

The charity's spokesperson, Dee Kelly, commented: "The internet can be used to access vulnerable children or young people and presents real dangers in the form of the collecting of indecent images or stories of children, grooming and chat room activity to name but a few."

But the internet can be used to access *anyone* if they're listed on it. *Any* images can be collected, not only indecent images of children. Chat rooms can be used to chat about *any* topic. So I think that what we have here is an oft-repeated semantic shift. The locus of people's fear of abuse turns to the net itself, rather than to the single factor which makes a chatroom sinister, an image available, a people-search predatory.

That factor is: the psychologically fucked-up (potential) offender.

It's encouraging to note that a police expert in sex offender risk management will talk at the charity's event today, and hopefully shift the focus back to an even-handed look at net + offender. Tech analyst Bill Thompson writes that reporting of increased internet abuse "makes good headlines, but I am not sure it helps us as we try to decide what to do about this serious problem. Instead it is more likely to persuade unthinking campaigners and compliant politicians to call for some sort of clampdown on the net".

This is an important point for a few reasons. First: censorship, filtering, ISP legalities, privacy and surveillance on the net are huge cans of very wriggly worms. Second: the potential or actual offender (or re-offender) is likely to be aware of the measures police take to look at their online activity, and also be net-savvy enough to move from site to site, place to place, program to program in evasion. So restricting online freedom with broad brushstrokes wouldn't work, fullstop. Same goes for restrictions on the use of encryption tools.

The analyst Thompson seems to encourage police to instead look at how they can infiltrate the criminal groups via the net. Good idea - but I also say this.

If a net offender is psychologically fucked, countries should try to unfuck them through medical channels as part of a judicially-overseen custodial sentence which is open-ended for however long it takes to get the prisoner's mental health back to normal. And yes, I think that in the case of child-sex offenders, this should be compulsory.

If a serious offender can't be 'fixed', they should, perhaps, be kept in prison for life. Or electronically tagged and forbidden ownership or use of a computer.

It's easy to forget, too, that offenders weren't always so. Until they committed an offence they were ordinary members of the public with jobs and homes and families. Their mental health was invisible. Put simply, and I don't think you can argue with this, the child-sex offender offends due to being in some way profoundly ill in the head. If it is possible for even one country in the world to take the lead, and make sure that their health services emphasise mental health in every member of the population from an early age through continued screening and treatment, I reckon these crimes would lessen.

Now go ahead, and tell me why I'm wrong. Really. :o) These issues are important.

Wednesday, March 03, 2004

Lippity lippity, boing boing boing, thump thump

I'm Watership Down!
by Richard Adams

Though many think of me as a bit young, even childish, I'm actually incredibly deep and complex. I show people the need to rethink their assumptions, and confront them on everything from how they think to where they build their houses. I might be one of the greatest people of all time. I'd be recognized as such if I wasn't always talking about talking rabbits.

Take the Book Quiz at the Blue Pyramid.

Brilliant posts
just because I read and loved them. Passmore Coffee writes of choosing to be in a bookshop instead of in front of the TV on 9/11. Brokentype had an, erm, kitchen adventure, let's say, with a dead, although vivacious, red snapper the other day. Holt Uncensored's ten commandments for writers bring you up short - which is what they're meant to do.

The Knowledge for Thirst blogs wonderfully, fullstop. There have been times I've been really disappointed by the contents of my paper cup, or glass cup, or tall cup, or mug, or demitasse. But I've never written like this about the experience: In summation, the Hot Fudge Shake is one of those things, like Vanilla Eggnog Coke, that will probably always taste best in the drawing board of my mind. It is a place where oulandish beverage concoctions frolic gaily in the fields of the Lord, and you respond to my emails in a timely fashion.

tallboy is concerned with Milton, who just watches. A grinworthy post among many thoughtworthy ones by MoorishGirl. As with most of us, Hobart doesn't like some things, and likes others. Reading and Writing thinks about Bush. No, not that kind, you foul-minded bastards!

You Live Your Life As If It's Real: some good poems. alembic fears the wind... and Uncle Jazzbeau's Gallimaufrey focuses, or maybe skitters nervously over, jumbled but still recognisable text.
Apparently, lesbians are excellent seducers too - but gay sex delivers a hit like pure heroin, and grrrrrreat orgasms. Which is why it has to be stopped before we all turn gay.

I laughed so much, I nearly came. :oD
I never thought I'd see "Guardian" and "Paid-for services" on the same web page. *Pete cries*

However, their columnists are still as good as ever. From the *sniff* non-digital edition *sniff sniff sniffle* comes a relentlessly logical opinion-piece on secrecy and the war, by Jonathan Freedland.

And the latest column in the Country Diary? Utterly, utterly beautiful.

Tuesday, March 02, 2004

You read it *here* first, dammit
Or you would have if you'd been here first rather than buried in the newspaper. Dean's World blogs about the huge numbers of Americans (44% of the population, no less) who have *contributed information* to the internet. Couple that with the knowledge that journalists in national papers pay close attention to what's on the web, and then you realise why the papers look so... familiar these days.

In the past week, I've noticed 6 or 7 articles of a quirky nature in The Independent. Tech stuff, small interesting stuff, or bigger stuff which is still non-mainstream. I noticed the articles especially because I'd read the content as many as 2 weeks in advance - on the web. The BBC website today posted a story I'd heard about a week ago on Slashdot.

Here's the pattern: stuff gets posted on blog A. A journalist on newspaper C takes a look. Blog B links to it a couple of days later. So does blog D. Soon, blog A is filled with comments on the post, and then newspaper C's journalist decides it's interesting enough to publish.

Not that I'm knocking the papers or anything. But this is big stuff. Things of wide interest no longer have to appear for the first time in newspapers written by 'professionals'. They can, and do, appear on blogs written by, erm, Joe Bloggs.
Gothamist has let me read the Oscars instead of having to watch them! And the guy's comments are more or less exactly what mine would've been.

More Gotham City news: a guy throws stuff onto a subway track and trans end up in chaos. If you've ever wondered how people really react when their subway train judders to a stop, watch the video.

Another satisfied Moleskine... customer. It feels so wrong to say customer. Writer. Let's say writer. Or scribbler. Or whatever.

Oh, and bloody hell! And here. Shostakovich?s terrible humour. So cold - it is hateful, even. And what does it hate? Itself. It hates what it is and yet it continues, laughing at itself, shaking with laughter through and through. Torn apart - nearly - by its own laughter. Apart from the hate locus, which I'd say is everything rather than itself, but still centred on itself (a la Derrida), I haven't agreed with anyone on anything as much in ages. Wow. (Warning: culture-talk.)

Monday, March 01, 2004

Thoughts, beliefs
It's Monday morning and I'm sitting here beside the window, looking at the last of the melting snow strewn over the roof and garden. Although this entry isn't about jobs or work, I don't have a job right now and ordinarily this would make me feel really bad. Especially on a Monday morning. But, philosophically speaking, should I feel bad about not going into a building and sitting at a desk therein for a certain amount of hours each day?

I don't think so. And in fact, even though I'm not working, I am still just as mentally active - if not, sometimes, more so - than those who are fortunate enough to have jobs. I'm a writer, you see. To look at it reductively, it's one way of 'coping' with 'the world'. And since thoughts like this have been floating around my head for a while, it's nice to see a great opinion piece about similar issues.

From Joho the Blog comes a heartfelt paean of praise for love and denigration for those who would deny it. Why would anyone deny love? (Shhh. Don't tell anyone. But it's the gay kind.)

Oh, and thumbs up to the 400 people who raved in an office building in London over the weekend. It's good that someone reclaims those stuffy monoliths for some snatched humanity-time. (They didn't break anything either.)

Oh, and the Oscars. I can't be bothered. 11 of the damn things for Return of the King. Not that it's not good, but come *on*. The list is here.