All entries for April 2006
April 13, 2006
1. Coffee, pastries and the Telegraph….the perfect start to a day. The former gives you a buzz and removes the last traces of morning grogginess. The second is loaded with fat and sugar giving you both fast release energy and a satiated feeling respectively. The third is an unbiased and authoritative view on the affairs of the week, combining insight and exquisite penmanship
2. Haircuts….there are few things I f!nd more sooth1ng than a ha1rcut. As the nubile assistants fuss over me, pour me copious cups of tea, I lie back and smile blissfully as the hairdresser massages my scalp as she washes my hair and rubs up against me as she cuts my golden tresses. The mirrors are without exception extremely flattering delicately lit to obscure the flaws in my complexion and add a radiant glow to my face. By the time it is over I am sophorific and hand over the extortionate fee without even a wince
3. MTV….completely addicted. Music to me is a drug, it has the power to change my moods: pick me up, make me mellow, soothe emotional turmoil and recreate beautiful memories. The vidoes both augment the emotional effects of the music (prime examples being the amazing Green Day video "When September Ends" which poignantly reminds me of the bliss of young love but the uneasy feeling that it will one day end), they also are full of eye candy both male and female. The prime examples being Madonna videos, Gwen Stefani and Girls Aloud…and for male Usher (love h1s body) and Ricky Martin. I mostly listen to MTV between sets in the gym and I remember when I first saw "Biology". My mouth dropped, my eyes went glassy and my knees went weak. When it ended the guy next to me on whom the video had the exact same effect whistled softly our eyes met and we instantly bonded. Now we are workout partners and are one day planning to go to a Girls Aloud concert
4. New clothes…I love the feeling of new clothes against my skin and the gorgeous feel of a cashmere jumper, a leather jacket or a well creased pair of jeans against my thighs.
5. Exercise….being highly strung and full of nervous energy I get extremely restless and jumpy without my exercise fix. Jogging is excellent for counteracting stress and associated tiredness and leaving me with a runner's high after. Weights are the best nervous tonic there is and excellent outlet for suppressed aggression
April 12, 2006
Starting a new series of rant, as my recent male menopause has left me grumpy and bad tempered…..........
. A-list stars past their sell by date…...by this I don't mean that I think alll actors and actresses should be in their 20s or 30s. Rather I think that leading men and especially leading women should be in decent shape and reasonably nubile. Case in point Sarah Jessica Parker. I got dragged by a girlie to see Fa1lure to launch her latest fl1ck…and the movie was ruined to me by a wart on her chin I had a grotesque fascination with, not to mention the general botox fixed smile, wrinkly skin and bleach job. Now Sarah is an attractive woman and well preserved for 200 years or however old she is, but if I must watch romantic comedies I at least want to leave smitten with the leading lady and jealous of the leading man, and if I am lucky (Like in that wonderful film matchpoint having erotic dreams for the following week about Scarlett J and Emily Mortimer. They don't make them like they used to. Back in the old days we had Lauren Bacall, Greta Garbo, Audrey Hepburn, Ingrid Bergman, Marilyn Monroe and other technicolour wet dreams. Now we are forced to watch Sarah JP, Jennifer Aniston, Debra Messing, Julia R and those bloody Desperate Housewives..
To make things worse as well as being cosmetically enhanced and not fooling anyone they are all thin as rakes…leaving them as just skin and bones. As someone who likes women of the voloptous ilk like Miss Monroe this is a cardinal sin
I am aware I am being incredibly shallow and not taking acting ability into account but the reality is that movie-star looks should play some weight in accounting for the million dollars they get a film
…I make special exemption for the following women who old as they may be Id marry in a heartbeat
Reese Witherspoon….no sex appeal whatsoever but the sweetest thing ever with her Southern Belle charm
Madonna….ok she may be a bit wrinkly but her charisma and star quality means she is still the same girl I lusted over as a 2 year old in videos such as Like a Virgin and Just like a Prayer
The Bridget Jones girl (forget her name) but cute as hell
Judi Dench…the only actress who acts her age and is all the much better for it. When Im 50 or 60 i wouldn't m1nd waking up next to her! Has the same power and charisma of Mrs Thatcher the original milf
Amer1can g1rl in 4 weddings….stunning and has aged v gracefully
Just to end on a high I want to comment on the damage Desperate Housewives and Sex in the City have done. Is it any wonder the whole social structure is breaking down and marriages collapsing when women get it into their heads that at the age of 40+ they can sleep with a different man every night….I am all for free choice but family is a sacred institution and there should be some shows showing the merits of a good old fashioned wholesome famlily unit in days where women and men worked to keep their marriage strong rather than breaking up at the slightest hitch and giving postal workers and gardeners cheap thrills
(Disclaimer this piece is satirical in nature and designed to provoke rather than representing my actual viiews)
April 08, 2006
One of the few things I would find it hard to do without is Pepsi Max that black gold coloured drink with maximum taste and no sugar. Unliike Diet Coke, Pepsi Max does not have the same metallic aftertaste instead having a deliightfully caramel aftertaste that tantalises the taste buds. The aspartame (the much demonised sweetener which has to be linked to everything from cancer to ADHD to depression) blends with the caffeiine to give one a nice buzz, an euphoria which lasts a few hours after consumption. Like all fizzy drinks it is best served ice cold, preferably out of either a 2 litre bottle or a can. Siphoned pepsi max is not so good, although the exception is Pizza Hut which does a splendid siphon brew which is a natural complement to the fat-laden pizza they serve.
One thing I have never understood is why Pepsi produce Diet Pepsi which is in every respect inferior to Pepsi Max. Additionally iI was disappointed with Pepsi Max Cino, which far from tasting like Cappucino had a siickly vanilla/syrup style taste. Not pleasant at all
For the health conscious dipsomaniacs Pepsi Max also produces a wonderful Long Island Ice Tea and Bacardi and Coke.
A female friend recently commented on the increasing trend for men to moisturise and exfoliate. And this is just the tip of the iceberg. These days men wear pink, spend thousands on cosmetic products, style their hair using three different "products" (yes I said it products)blow their salaries on cosmetic surgery and spend most of their free time toning their muscles and admiring their reflection in the mirror. They drink "Cosmopolitans" and "Mojitos".
This social phenonemon has been labelled metrosexuality by a lot of commentators with Daviid Beckham one of its many poster boys.
A definition I pulled from the web:
"An urban male with a strong aesthetic sense who spends most of his tiime and money on his appearance and lifestyle"
This is by no means a new phenonemon…dandies such as Beau Brummel dominated the social scene over 100 years ago and you only have to look at pictures of foppish aristocrats with petulant expressions, exquisite clothes and wigs.
When did this start? you may ask. Thiis is the wrong question. Male vanity has always been latent but until recently confined to careers like modelling, pop (think Bowie) and arty sets. The question is how did it become mainstream?
I believe the answer lies in the influential men's magazines such as Esquire and GQ which filled their glossy magazines with narcisstic young men sporting fashionable clothing and accessories. As the excesses and greed of 80s corporate America provided young men with money to burn these urbanites were able to blow their huge salaries on status symbols such as designer clothes, permantans and honed bodies. The best illustration of this is found in the book "American Psycho" by Brett Easton Ellis a wonderful satirical look at the materialism and consumerism of the 80s. Patrick Bateman in extensive details describes his grooming habits and workout program and in conversations with identifit clones reveals his extensive knowledge about style and fashion etiquette. "Vogue" by Madonna also summed up this era.
Media has always had a great influence on society and along with mass production, rising incomes and the resulting consumerism it has created a society obsessed by appearance propogated by the genetic celebrities who fill glossy magazines, television advertiisements and film and music industry. Image is everything these days and takes prioriity over talent and substance. These airbrushed and cosmetiically enhanced celebrities inspire envy and from it imitation both from women and men.
No wonder that men now moisturise and exfoliate.
April 07, 2006
Costa in my opinion does the best coffee….hot, rich flavour with just the right degree of bitterness, and gives me a nice kick. Ive found this wonderful little cafe on the way to my lectures which serves Costa Coffee (although it isn't a Costa cafe)...they also serve amaziing iced danishes.
As I am a zombie if I am forced to wake up before midday I have developed a morning ritual a pagan cult would be proud to claim as their own….I splash water on my face then use an apricot scrub to remove the excess dead skin cells and leave my face tingling. I then moisturise to give my face a youthful glow and protect myself from the ravages of the elements. After dressing I then make a beeline for the cafe, purchasing a Telegraph on the way. I greet the waitress with a pleasant smile nodding as she asks me if I want the usual. I pay her leaving a generous tip as I sit down waiting till the caffeine buzz kicks in. I do the crossword then satisfiied with my mental acuity I briskly stroll to my morning lecture timing it so I arrive late enough to make an entrance but not so late that I risk embarassment or miss the pearls of wisdom my lecturer rarely distills
April 04, 2006
Been six months now in Cambridge and while as a graduate I am somewhat out of the mainstream university life nevertheless have a bit of insight into what it is really like at Cambridge. Here are a few observations
1. The intellectual snobbery is seriously overbearing. Virtually everyone styles themselves as intellectuals and do not miss a single opportunity to display their "intelligence". A typical exchange I had recently:
Making small talk to a girl at a social dinner (the conversation moves onto literature)
Me; Yeah so what are you reading
Her: i'm reading the portrait of a lady by henry james… hardy said about james he has a "ponderously warm manner of saying nothing in infinite sentences" which is about right.
Me (thinking to myself…you and henry james have a lot in common…)
2. There is this odd obsession with rowing. I mean virtually everyone does it…why I have no iidea. Tried it for a term but gave up as getting up at 6am, breaking into a sweat and having dinner with girl rowers with bigger muscles than me is not my idea of fun
3. Cambridge students work far too hard the libraries are overpacked and the queues for vacation borrowing are a mile long
4. After a couple of weeks all the state school students and grammar school students have perfected a plummy accent and start wearing pashminas and leather brogues and rugby shirts with turned up collars and are virtually undistinguishable from ex public school boys
5. Virtually every student is bordering on alcoholiism. Formal halls and college bars are scary as the blood alcohol levels of the occupants are sky high.
On the insistance of Tommy I finally coughed up the necessary 20 pounds to join WGA and can now resume blogging. Looking back over my posts they seem as if by a completely different person. But then the halycon days of youthful irresponsibility must end and one must face up to the more serious issues such as getting a job, desperately trying to stop the inevitable and drifting away from your old uni friends, repaying your student loan and dating girls who are interested in your financial assets rather than your er other assets.
At the same time there is a lot more uncertainty about the future. At university you have a group of close friends you see all the time and even as someone who is introverted and quite shy, it is easy to meet people and make new friends. Although in theory you are away from home and have all this freedom you have the safety net of returning home at the end of term.
The Masters degree was in a sense partly to delay the job decision and also just because I was sore about not getting into Cambridge at undergraduate. These were in retrospect poor reasons, and the Masters is far from an easy option. Have never worked so hard in my life and have gone from sailing through my undergraduate degree to staring in blank uncomprehension at my course notes, wishing the lecturers would speak in English rather than academic double dutch and waking up at nights in a cold sweat after having nightmares of failing the finals.
There is also the scary thought of having to get a job and having one's social circle shrink to old university friends who are too busy with their own lives to meet up often and colleagues from work.
Just to bring everyone up to date on the happenings in my life….
Currently at Cambridge doing a Master degree which is incredibly difficult and involves long hours slaving in the library and constantly thinking they made a mistake in admitting me and having to get out a dictionary every second sentence when talking to the other students.
On the plus side lovely surroundings and it is nice being a short walk from the city centre rather than having to bus it to Coventry and praying that some hooded monster sitting on the other side of the bus will leave you alone, and bumping into hookers walking back from the Skydome after a late night film.