Archive for December, 2002

questions, questions

Right. I feel an explanation is due, if only to stop all the speculation currently rife in my comments section. Why am I in Chile? I?m on holiday, staying with my good friend Andres. Has this trip got anything to do with penguins? Yes, of course. I?ll be visiting a Colonia de Ping?inos (as it?s known locally) on January 10th, while I?m travelling in the Torres Del Paine National Park. Before then it?s a long drive North to the Atacama Desert, where we?ll be camping out under the World?s clearest skies and sharing Peyote with local Indians (OK, I made the last part up. Maybe).

Happy New Year, one and all.

48 hours

So. 48 hours in Chile and what have I learnt?

  • Everything comes with guacamole.
  • Drunk driving is not merely tolerated, but appears to be actively encouraged.
  • People here take security very seriously. All the houses are behind huge iron gates and walls, everything is alarmed to the max, and the house where I am staying is patrolled by an evil looking (and enormous) rottweiller. The dog is actually quite sweet, but he is a fearsome looking beast.
  • Last night I attended a BBQ featuring a vast array of delicious meats and got quietly drunk on the local poison, Piscola. This drink is an evil combination of Pisco and Coca-Cola, and comes highly recommended – by whom, I?m not exactly sure, but nonetheless it?s been very effective. Come to think of it, I dranks lots of it the previous evening too, so it must be OK.

    Not sure when I?ll been online next, so in the mean time you can try and imagine what it?ll be like to spend New Years Eve in a place like this. Jealous yet?


    Just in case anyone was worried (unlikely, I realize), I?ve arrived safely in Chile. No llamas as yet, but will continue to keep eyes peeled.


    Welcome to America. It smells of donuts.

    After a typically festive meal of Microwaved Pizza courtesy of American Airlines, I find myself in Miami Airport with eight hours to kill. After willfully wasting some time by deliberately filling in the wrong immigration form, knowing full-well I’d be sent to the back of the queue to start again, I’ve enjoyed the native version of haute cuisine, a cinabon (kind of an outsize Danish pastry covered in a litre of vanilla custard) and a caramel latte with whipped cream and toffee sauce. I’ve now settled in for the duration with a copy of the Miami Herald (lead story: Santa addresses the troops) with a much better understanding of why America has such a problem with obesity.

    Strangely, I can’t view the blogjam homepage as it has not passed the local ISP?s “content filter”. As I said, wecome to America.

    i’m off

    Bollocks to this. I’m off to Chile. Merry Xmas.

    PS. I’m posting this from a phone booth at Heathrow airport, where there is very little evidence of Christmas at all.

    joe strummer

    The closest I got to seeing The Clash was attending a filming of the BBC music show Later a couple of years back. We’d gone to see The Delgados without knowing who else was due to play, and found ourselves seated right next to Joe Strummer and the Mescaleros. Not sure what to expect, Joe opened the show with a strident, incendiary version of ‘London Calling.’ For some unknown reason, he turned and pointed at my friend and I (we were about ten feet away) each time he reached part of the chorus that goes “cause London is burning, and I….” and prompted us to finish the line, which we did by screaming “LIVE BY THE RIVER” at the top of our lungs. At the end of the song he turned to us again, winked and nodded as if to say thank you. For all his musical achievements, including the pivotol role he played in shaking up music in the 1970’s, it’s probably this moment I shall remember first when people mention his name. RIP.

    Here’s a nice tribute written by Mr Billy Bragg.


    Blimey. I just realised that blogjam’s second anniversary came and went nearly a week ago without notice or fanfare. Two years of complete and utter crap, and still growing steadily. Hooray for me!

    music music music

    Music was my first love, and it shall be my last. Music of the future? Yes, of course, why not? And music of the past? Well, obviously. Today I have some tremendous music lined up for you – first up is a live recording of Enrique Iglesias, his voice isolated from the rest of the band by a disgruntled sound engineer. Owww! My ears! Next up is the remarkable Karen Gathercole, who sent a tape of Christmas singing to her work colleagues this year in lieu of a card. Karen, you’re a bona-fide, 100%, grade A genius. Finally, something that popped up during the day-job: Ablaska, the techno Husky. Woof.


    Gratuitous soft porn link:

    Another tribe, far less known, uses certain herbs and tinctures to enlarge young girl’s breasts as part of their rite of initiation. Only very few of those girls get the opportunity to leave the jungle and go to school in one of the small towns of the region, where I was lucky enough to find them on my first far-east trip.

    Quite, but I rather suspect that these so-called ding-dong girls may well have been photoshopped (no nudity, but probably not appropriate for work. Or anywhere else, for that matter).

    corporate bombing

    Hmmm… I wonder if this googlebombing thing still works…

    <advert> A friend of mine has recently started up a UK street team company where young music fans can sign up to promote bands locally, winning lots of prizes in the process. Go say hello to Traffic Online.</advert>

    Probably not.

    On an unrelated note, a big thanks to David who bought this CD for me as prize for winning his splendid pop quiz. A marvellous choice, and I thank you.