tag : bright yellow-green apples: October 2005

"I see little point in persisting in a discussion with one so obstinate as you" Martin White

Thursday, October 27, 2005

you've got to get mad

figure 78.9. who, me?

I'm heading off to Northern Ireland tomorrow night, to see Mary for a week. And Rach, in the Belfast, of course. But before then, well I was listening to Radio 1 on my walkman while gardening. You know how they often say our generation doesn't care about things - indeed that we're self-obsessed? Well check out part of the latest song by the inexplicably popular My Chemical Romance, called I'm Not OK:

"I'm okay
I'm okay!
I'm okay, now
(I'm okay, now)

But you really need to listen to me
Because I'm telling you the truth
I mean this, I'm okay!
(Trust Me)

I'm not okay
I'm not okay
Well, I'm not okay
I'm not o-fucking-kay
I'm not okay
I'm not okay

Such a gaspingly navel-gazing and mopy gesture, it's as if hard-rock can't even be arsed to get properly angry. Instead of furious about great injustice, he's merely not ok. A bit peeved and angsty, about some girl doing him wrong. Oh dear, diddums. The best nomination for a properly mad "I want to do more than survive, I want to rub it in your face" song, that does more than sigh and moan, will get a lolly pop when I return. Livid music - now there's edifying activity to keep you happy!

Monday, October 24, 2005


Figure 46.1. hot ideology

It's easy to see how often I read the Guardian, given how much I end up quoting stuff from its comment pages. I find much of the politics and social outlook there very amenable, despite the odd glitch. But one big issue I come against so often is how many of the contributors display an anti-religious sentiment that borders of the ridiculous. It's frustrating, to me, that left-leaning and liberal approaches seem to be perceived, by many, as mandating a secularism that denies any sacred or sacramental outlook.

Polly Toynbe is the archetypal indignant pontificator, here for example. Indeed in context this piece, calling for the toleration of silly religious people so long as it's for the cause of good works, seems positively inviting - though it doesn't go so far as to regard us religious people as fully Guardian-ites. The general line seems to be one of anger or pity for those of us infantile enough to confess a faith, and terrible enough to impose it on others (ie. let it affect how we live our lives). I have to vent every so often, cos this bothers me a lot.

But the regular weekly religious column often does a good job of blasting many simplistic assumptions expressed elsewhere in the pages. And the latest, from Giles Fraser, is a stunner. It's not online yet, but follows some points made earlier. Here's my favourite section:

"Many born-again atheists remain trapped in a 19th-Century time warp, reheating the standard refutations of religious belief based on a form of rationalism that harks back to an era of fob-watches and long sideburns. One Oxford don has called the website of the National Secular Society a "museum of modernity, untroubled by the awkward rise of postmodernity"...This commitment to Victorian philosophy turns to farse when secularists describe themsleves as free-thinkers. In truth, atheism is about as alternative as Rod Stewert."

A-men brother!

Thursday, October 20, 2005

how darre you!

I know I've already gone on about this to a couple of you, but it needs to be heard. Normally radio 4 is as bourgeoise as the Guardian, but this morning it was rather shaken up by the combined forces of Joan Rivers and Darkus Howe. Listen in to the latest show from about 10/15 minutes or so in. It becomes truly compelling car-crash radio!

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

spam javelin

figure 57.0 it's really like that

It's going to be a bit of an arty week, with the Turner Prize shortlist out tomorrow, but I want to get some mentions in now anyway. Plus it'll provide a satisfying distraction from politics - what with the Tory leadership contest, which is about to kick off with a first vote tomorrow, likely to get me waffling about the terrors of conservative policies. Again.

Number one is that you should listen to The Go! Team's album, Thunder lightning strike, which was nominated for the Mercury Music Prize. It's such joyous music, without any consideration, analysis, or angst. Lots of saturated rhythms and strangely off-kilter melodies all banging together in short happy bursts. It's the nearest aural equivalent to eating fruit salad sweets.

Number two is that there was a special edition of the Guardian today, with some new art and an interview with Sarah Lucas (not to be confused with our own wee Sarah - despite wearing a funny knitted hat on the cover page). I'm not sure I identify with all the boozy living, but I love her way with titles and ability to come up with an impressive motif. Most people will know her best for the fried eggs self-portrait.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

one nation?

figure 89.2. least worst of a very bad bunch

What a shame. Ken Clarke is an unrepentant harbinger of the terrible 90s government. David Cameron is a Tony Blair-esc smarmer. Liam Fox is a right-wing loony like only Jon Redwood could better. David Davies seems to prefer stodgy hard line rhetoric to anything sensible. The one candidate in the Conservative Party leadership race that's even close to being anything close to reasonable, Malcolm Rifkind, has gone and bowed out due to lack of support. The Tory party are great ninnies.

Friday, October 07, 2005

hidden by leaves

figure 45.7. not a true likeness

After some pretty weird dreaming last night, I woke up with an urge to be decisively assertive and clear out some of the dross I’ve been gathering for a few months now. In this case it was a fairly large wodge of unfinished pictures, that have remained in that state for so long that they’re really pressing on my mind every time I look at them. Like an accusation, of neglect. Is it that I don’t like to have failure – in this case the inability to make anything notable out of a few half-baked ideas – staring me in the face? The recycling bin was no good, as I’d only get reticent and hoof them out again in a couple of days. So I took them downstairs, stuck them in the fireplace, and set them alight with a couple of matches. What a blaze! Hopefully it’ll help me to come up with some new ideas, with such tangled rough ends out of the way.

Ideas are what Andy is after at the moment. If you have any interesting or unusual readings of the Genesis 3 story, please do pop over and share them with him. Unless you're into creationist diatribes, in which case this might be a safer bet.

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

take notes

It's time to get the admin box out for just a few minutes.

I've had an ongoing project of updating the SCM weblinks page for a while now, trying to pick out a few notable sites from the fields of material. There needs to be some selection, just to start people off in their searching! If you know of any notable ones that I haven't included yet, please do let me know. There's no real selection criteria - I'm just looking for sites that liberal-ish questioning Christians would enjoy, or indeed anyone in the Church might be excited by. I've also added a couple more links to this site, down on the right of this site - with a promise to my friend Yvonne that I'd point her out to you. She's just started writing, so be gentle m'dears.

And I've made the first forays into trying out HTML coding all by myself, with a view to actually getting on with this promise to make a new website. Something of my very own, with pretty stripes and useful levers. It’s surprisingly simple, or at least in the basic elements. So at this rate I might be raking in the odd bit of collaboration from you all in due course, just like I have with my joint colouring book dream.