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This Degrades...

Wednesday 26th August, cool; cloud and strong breeze.

Not that I suppose the lads in pants are really being exploited...

Far as I can tell, they're happy in their work & they don't look any sillier that Iggy Pop, for one.

I just think it would be funny if they were anti-pubbed.

Darn it, I see that Spirit on Not-the-Booker seems to have peaked at around 7votes. Typical of my lack of organisation. If I'd just taken the trouble to stuff a few envelopes, knock on a few doors, offer taxi rides to the polling station, I bet you anything I could have pushed that into double figures, and THEN wouldn't I have been proud. Ah well, I'm not that person, such is life.

West Sussex in the photo, blue and gold and tarnished late summer green, and that's the end of another August. New year, by our reckoning, always begins in September, which is when I'll be back here.

Trains, trains, lads in Pants, no regrets and surprises. . .

Friday August 21st. Breezy, cooler, blue & white sky. Brief heavy shower early this morning.

Every time I quick-march out of the exit from the Tube platform at Euston there they are. A group of young men, in their D&G underpants, lifesize, staring at me with diffident, imploring gaze:

Look at my pants

Please look at the lovely front of my pants!

Please look at my pants!

The fact that they seem to be gathered beside a swimming pool, about to swim in their knickers?, gives them a sad, nervous, underprivileged look. Can't they afford swimwear; or was it a spur-of-the moment idea and now they're scared the attendants might shout at them? Of course I look, but I never pause, I just zoom by on my swift, honed and minimised path to the escalators (the up ones work); thinking to myself, what fun if I came by here one morning and found them anti-pub spray-paint daubed with the message THIS DEGRADES MEN!

Nah. Not going to happen.

Nobody's going to anti-pub with those trigger-happy Mets of ours around. Which reminds me, I'm so glad that our police (chastened by the inquiry into G20) will in future adopt a "no surprises" policing policy for demonstrations. If they're going to be brutal, they'll announce it in advance, so anyone with any sense will stay at home.

The tomatoes? (Click through for anything you ever wanted to know). Oh yes, it's tomato time. Tomato soup, fresh tomato soup with herbs and cream. The scent, when you poke your head into our tiny vine-filled greenhouse; warm tomato off the vine, dripping juice. Best year since the legendary 1976, and at last we did something right. Also, been watching movies:

Battle of Algiers. Excellent, thoughtful, seminal & a piece of modern history that has been fantastically influential, shall we say, on the real world too. Terrific score. The ending more bitterly ironic than Pontecorvo could have guessed, because every old woman who remembers how she fought so savagely long ago for the liberty of her country, for the dignity of Islam. . . must now be kicking herself. And plenty of men too.

Day of the Jackal Also about Algeria & OAS, mass market treatment. Stands up to the associaton.

Mesrine Doesn't! It's probably a bit unfair that I watched this soon after those two, but really! Little boy lost, he takes himself so seriously. I have no interest in this brutal self-pitying idiot. Go away and get some irony.

Sin Nombre Loved it. Can't believe its his first feature. Okay, Fukunaga clearly a little seduced by his gangster pals, but this is the tragedy of youth without hope in pure moving pictures, without the stylish speeches of a novel or a theatrical drama: Flores and Paulina Gaitan both excellent, understated performances, a beautiful, tragic thing.

Laura recorded from daytime tv. Load of tosh. Classic Noir often is not what it's cracked up to be.

Not The Booker

Warm day, lot of cloud, no rain, growing cooler towards evening (same as for ages now)

Well, well. It's not often I get a chance to say this, in fact I can't remember if I ever have. Voted awards are not for me, and I know it, and humbly accept my fate. But here goes: Spirit, Not the Booker If you're reading this, and you liked the book, you could vote for me!

Why the Albert Hall? No particular reason, except we went Promenading last week, with the two Gabriels, after a nice picnic in the park by the Memorial. I liked the Mozart best.

Now, back to pasting together my Utopian Politics Powerpoint for Copenhagen. A brilliant idea, I think. If nothing works, I can blame the technology. Not often I give myself a chance to do that, either