Monthly Archives: November 2006

TV Times

I love my cameraphone. It allows me to take pretty pictures like the one above on my way home from work (although some of the credit has to go to London for being so purty in the first place). Isn’t it amazing that I can click a button on my phone, send the picture to my computer and then post it on a blog for all the world to see?

Technology is just the bestest, ain’t it?

Anyway, enough of the silly and down to the real reason for this post: shameless self-promotion. I’m on TV next week in two different programmes! On Tuesday 28 November on BBC4 at 9pm I’ll be a ‘talking head’ on a show called Parallel Worlds, and then on Saturday 2 December at 8.20pm I’ll be on the same channel on The Cinema Show. Funny how I filmed them both ages ago and they ended up being broadcast in the same week…

If you’re bored and fancy a look, bear in mind that the camera puts 20lbs on me instead of the 10lbs it puts on most people, and it was really, really hot when we were filming for the first show. The second one was filmed at the MoD base I mentioned a while back and I was far more relaxed, which should be obvious.

Plus – and I’m not sure about this – I think I use the word “willy” at one point.

Though I can’t promise they left it in.

(The word, that is, not a willy… oh, enough with the smut.)



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Autumn Trots On

The Royal Horse Artillery (or somesuch highfalutin’ gaggle of gee-gees – can’t say I noticed their name) trotted by my office last week. I was on the way to the bank and this parade strolled by, helicopters and police cars escorting them through the traffic on Marylebone Road. It made quite a nice lunchtime sight, although it still has some way to go to beat the time the Queen drove by the SFX office in Bath. I’ve also seen Prince Charles and Camilla driving down Marylebone Road and Tony Blair sped by my house once, too. S’funny, you kind of expect famous people to teleport or something… “Roads? Where we’re going, we don’t need roads!”*

Incidentally, the meeting with the bank went better than I expected. Something like this, in fact:

Me: “Hello, my name’s Jayne Nelson. You may know me from such bank meetings as The Colour Of No Money, Dude, Where’s My Overdraft? and Apocalypse Credit Card. Today I’m bringing you I’ve Quit My Job: Please Can I Skip Some Loan Repayments?“**

Bank manager: “Er, sure. Let’s see what we can do.”

I’ve worked out that February next year will leave me so poor that church mice will think they’re doing quite well compared to me.

(Why are church mice supposed to be poor, by the way? They’ve got a roof over their heads, no cats to worry about and all the holy wafers they can eat. What else do they want from life? Xboxes? Their little paws would never get to grips with the buttons.)

My money drought should just be temporary, though, and it’s the price you pay for going freelance – the transition is tough. I’m still looking forward to it immensely. The challenges! The variety! The weight loss from lack of food! Woohoo!

At least I’m saving money on my heating bill; it’s stupidly warm at the moment. It’s November and it’s taken until this week for the trees outside my lounge window to go this colour. Some of them are still in full leaf! Oh, and that’s Twickenham Rugby Ground on the horizon, surrounded by cranes. Girls Aloud played there the other day. In my time here I’ve heard U2 and The Rolling Stones blaring from that stadium… thankfully I couldn’t hear the girls, so the prevailing winds driving the sound towards my window obviously have good music taste.

And now I really have to go because I have so many reviews and features to write this weekend I’m going to be dreaming about typing. As opposed to dreaming about zombies, which I did last night, and it SUCKED. (And so did they. Brains.)

* With apologies to Back To The Future.
** With apologies to Troy McClure from The Simpsons.


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Frisky Galore!

Remember me saying a few weeks ago that I won a free Vue cinema pass in a quiz night? On Friday, aware that it had nearly expired, I arranged to go to the cinema with my friends Gillen (who also had a pass) and Paul (who didn’t, but we were going to split the cost between the three of us to make him feel better). We went to the Vue Leicester Square to see Borat: Cultural Learnings Of America For Make Benefit Glorious Nation Of Kazakhstan.

Or at least, we tried.

There was an enormous queue, the film was on three different screens and within minutes of us arriving two of them were already flashing “FULL”. Popular film. Certainly more popular than our free Vue passes, anyway, because when we handed them to the guy in the kiosk he spent ten minutes scrutinising every damn word, then consulting a book under the counter, before informing us they weren’t valid.

Now, we’d READ these passes, small print and all. They contained no terms and conditions that should have tripped us up, but this guy was so desperate to find something I can’t help but wonder if he just plucked the first excuse he could think of from thin air:

“The film’s too new. You can’t see it until it’s been out for two weeks.”

We groaned. Annoyed but philosophical, Gillen enquired: “Okay, we’ll forget the passes. How much does a ticket cost?”

To which the guy replied, “Fifteen pounds.”

“For me and her?” asked Gillen, puzzled.

“No. Each.”

Fifteen pounds?


You could buy the DVD for that! Or, as Paul declared very loudly, “Hang on, we came here to see Borat, not to buy bloody Kazakhstan!”

Just how much dosh does a West End cinema make in one day if they can get away with charging that amount of money per seat? The Vue was heaving with people and nobody else seemed to mind forking out such a sum. And they were all buying food inside, too, which was just as hideously overpriced. I always knew West End cinemas were expensive, but this was the first time it really hit me – and ouch, it hurt!

So we didn’t go to the cinema. We went to a café in Soho, talked about strip joints and something rude there’s not very much of in North London and had an absolutely hysterical evening having cake forced on us by the slightly crazed café owner.

I’ll catch Borat on DVD.

Changing the subject totally: hey, check out the ermine! (Although he’s a stoat really, all wintrified and snow-camouflaged and frosty). He was one of my favourite pictures at this year’s Wildlife Photographer of the Year Exhibition, which I visited yesterday with my friend Stephen because I have to see it every year.

(The exhibition, that is, not Stephen. I see him frequently enough, usually sitting on the floor of my lounge with my computer in pieces around him as he fiddles with its insides and makes it work like it wants to make me happy. He be a very clever man, and my computer does make me happy.)

What I love about the exhibition is the way they always play rainforest noises and animal calls as you’re walking around the hall. You’ll be staring at a picture of an arctic hare and suddenly you’ll hear a wolf howl. Or you’ll be gazing at a walrus and you’ll hear a humpbacked whale… it’s interactive photography! The show is on until April at the Natural History Museum and I can’t recommend it highly enough. Unless you hate nature, obviously, in which case you’ll be bored off your tits.

And finally, because I haven’t mentioned my current obsession, Supernatural, for a while…

In the episode which aired last Thursday in America, Dean Winchester mentioned that he likes “frisky women”.

Biddy texted me soon after with this gem: “It’s my mission in life to feel as frisky as possible at all times from now on.”



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Bunny Girl

See this bunny? See how happy and bouncy he is? I’ve been like this all week. Sleep aside, I don’t think I’ve gone more than an hour without giggling like a loon at something-or-other, whether at home or at work. I’ve been like The Joker. On laughing gas. With somebody telling me a drop-dead hilarious joke, while simultaneously tickling my funny bone.

It’s been… noisy.

There have been lows (such as missing the first press screening of Casino Royale because I had to work late), but mostly this week has been all about the highs. Just tonight, for instance, I laughed so hard at an email sent to me by a friend that I actually fell off my chair. Then I laughed about the fact I fell off my chair. Then I watched the latest episode of Torchwood (“Cyberwoman”), which finally sold me on the show because I really wasn’t sure until now, and it made me howl (at the Wife Swap moment). And I’m just about to watch the latest episode of Heroes, which means more merriment is imminent.

Even the phrase “merriment is imminent” just made me giggle.

See that bunny? That’s me, that is. Wheeee!


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Late Night Lament

Sorry for the lack of updates over the last few days. It’s deadline week and, when I haven’t been at work, I’ve been snowed under with freelance writing, going out with long-lost colleagues and entertaining visitors.

(Which reminds me: never take Pet Shop Anny to a restaurant called Giraffe – she’ll steal the menu because she’s obsessed with the buggers. Good job the waiter didn’t mind… though he did inform her the burger she was eating was actually made of giraffe meat just to freak her out.)

At this moment I’m sitting at my desk subbing a feature in the Total Film office. It’s 8.30pm. I’m alone. The security guard has just wandered by and turned off all the lights except for the one over my head.

Strangely, all I can think about is cheesecake.


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