Friday, 22 October 2010

Casca il Mondo

There are lots of reasons why people join the army. Because they like guns. Because they want to fight for their country. Because they want to make a difference.
I, personally, think that teaching people how to kill others is morally quite sickening, and I have done for quite some time.

I do think that the bonds formed with fellow soldiers is really interesting. I'm also interested as to how these men and women deal with the psychological effects of war...
And as an aspiring journalist, maybe that's something worth thinking about.

When I am Prime Minister...

1. It will not be ten bloody thousand bloody pounds a year to study politics at Oxford, forcing people with moral values into considering becoming an army journalist (minimum enlistment four years, and I'm no Ross Kemp) just to pay the fees.

2. Glastonbury tickets will go on sale AFTER acts have been finalised, not before, in a totally illogical and ridiculously money-grabbing fashion. Maybe tickets will actually be available for more than four hours before selling out, as well.

3. More career options will be available to girls, so that when you go up to the British Sugar or RAF people and ask about engineering, they actually take you seriously. (I don't actually want to be an engineer, but that's beside the point.)

4. The educational system will be monitered so that people with aspirations, who work hard and actually defeat all odds and get decent grades at school, will not have to waste valuable lesson time whilst teachers have to deal with people who read Closer under the desk, saying things like "OMG look at Danielle Lloyds eyelashes when she has no makeup on, she looks like she has cancer," "OMG I asked The Wanted to kiss me and they totally all did, on the lips, except for one, who was, like, well stuck up," and my personal favourite "I WELL want to catch Bin Laden."

5. Paint brochures will have colour samples that actually resemble the colours once painted onto the wall/surface.

Love, Peace, and Shit-Scary Decisions,

Monday, 18 October 2010

A guide to music-genres and teenage sub-cultures

I'm sorry. I am about to have a little rant, so please be prepared for a post text-rich and poorly constructed, with little or no thought given to both structure and content. My English teacher would be ashamed.

Why is it that music these days has so many different genres and sub-genres (some of them aren't even genres, they're named after the particular group of teenagers who buys them) that it tells you precisely nothing about the actual genre? What the hell is post-punk nerd-core grind? Indie punk power-pop anyone? And don't even get me started on Dubstep...

The irritating thing is, most of these so-called "genres" don't even count as music in my opinion. Dubstep (KatieB et al) sounds like tuneless noise fuzz. Most nerd-core isn't even intelligent. 98% of rap should have a C in front of it (I am aware I sound like my mother.) Chiptune, trance, emo, indie, scene, chav, R&B... do we even know what they mean anymore?

OK, so here's a little run-down of music genres today:

R&B - The most popular music in the charts today it seems, a vast majority of this is shit. Once upon a time this used to stand for Rhythm & Blues. Now, we have Usher.

Pop - No longer the love-child of The Beatles and The Kinks, Pop in the charts today consists mostly of "urbanised" pop (think Cheryl Cole) sugar-coated vomit (Justin Beiber) or Dance influenced (The Saturdays.) There are some decent artists, for example Eliza Doolittle and Cee Lo Green, but on the whole, pop is dead.

Rock - The genre most densely populated with good music. Biffy Clyro, Kings of Leon, Razorlight, and, of course Muse are just a few of the best bands in the charts today. Of course you still have some mongrel, shitty "rock" (think 3Oh!3, My Chemical Romance, Panic! At The Disco) but hey, you can't win them all.

Dance - not knowing very much about this genre, I can't really comment, except to say I have never met a dance/trance/hardcore track that I've liked. This includes all forms of Chiptune, Crunk, Dupstep, or anything with -core on the end of it.

These are the main genres with more minor sub-categories as follows;

Metal - good but not great. I have nothing against screaming, but I'm more Karen O than Corey Taylor, thanks.
Jazz - fantastic, obviously. There is approximately zero jazz in the charts today, not including Michael Buble (apologies to all Canadian readers.)
Emo/Scene/Chav/Rave - these all refer to a sub-culture, not a genre. The former two are fairly similar, as are the latter two (appearance-wise.) Now, I have no prejudice against anyone who wants to act/dress differently to the norm, but let's face it, most Scene Kids etc just want to fit in to their pathetic little clique, dressing and acting just the same as each other, despite claiming to be "individual" or "alternative."
Folk - Mumford and Sons, Laura Marling and even Bombay Bicycle Club are in on this act, making folk cool again (hallelujah!)
Easy Listening - Neil Diamond.
Ska /Punk - there are very few real ands or lovers left in the charts today, which is sad, because this genre has produced some of the best musicians of the century.

And now for the rest, which has one label - Indie.
There are several reasons why this word seriously gets on my tits, for want of a better phrase. The first, is that any music that doesn't fit into these categories, and even some that does, are labelled as indie. The second is that indie is actually a term for unsigned bands, not dreary fashion-rock. And the third is because if, for any reason, you choose to dress, act, listen to music or have beliefs which in anyway differ from the norm, you are labelled as indie. I do not try to be indie, nor do I wish to be. I feel some things I like are positively mainstream, and yet any time I turn up in a vintage outfit, or listen to The Smith (OK, so they were admittedly indie) or turn my nose up at popular culture, I am labelled indie. This is, understandably, rather annoying.

But I do not wish to bore you any further with my ranting. It is my mother's birthday today (my mother, who likes Alien Sex Fiend, and Gary Barlow, but who is not indie!!!) and so I intend to spend some more time with my loved ones instead of writing teenage-angst ridden posts.

Live Long and Prosper,

P.S. If you do one thing this week, read this book - Seeds of Greatness, by John Canter.

Sunday, 10 October 2010

And it's just another story caught up in another photograph I found.

These are all the silly, drippy images I managed to collect looking for a meaningful, deep one to put on here a while ago.
They are VERY drippy, very soppy rom-com, so please excuse me, but perhaps they'll make you smile if you're feeling a bit down, or perhaps if you've just watched The Notebook or something.

Erm, I'm not very good at tagging photographs and all of that, because I tend to forget where I found them, but I think most of these are from, which is a very smile-inducing little blog, if I may say so.

And in case you're wondering, the lyrics on the title (yeah, title lyrics, the epitome of drippy-ness) are from a song I happened to stumble upon (I do that a lot) called Photograph by Jamie Cullum (see what I did there? With a blog post about photographs?)

It's just another story caught up

In another photograph I found.
And it seems like another person lived that life
A great many years ago from now,
When I look back on my ordinary, ordinary life,
I see so much magic, though I missed it at the time.

Call me a drip, but I do quite like that.

Love, Peace and Drippy-ness,

Friday, 8 October 2010

Sources of "Serendipicite."

Hello again.
So I was recently chatting to my friend (here's her blog, read it. It's good. Wow, free advertising, I am generous indeed) about her blog stats (I realise I sound like a bit of a blog nerd here, I promise you I don't spend all my time talking about my blog, as you can probably tell by the quality of the posts recently) of which she had something like TWO THOUSAND. I was, understandably, quite impressed by this. After having a bit of a moan ("aw, I bet MINE aren't like that, it doesn't even come up in a Google search!") she proceeded to tell me, in a typically blunt fashion, it was because I chose a stupid name.
This got me thinking about the name of my blog. It's french for serendipity, and the URL is another (French) way of saying it. I love the French language, and I love serendipity - finding inspirational things out of nowhere. So I have decided, for a few posts, to share some things that I accidentally found fascinating with you, my lovely readers (ahem, yeah, you're a pretty rare breed.)

This photo; A Sailor's Kiss. When a kiss isn't just a kiss, it's a statement - I'm young, I'm free, maybe I'm in love, or yeah maybe I'm just looking for a good time and a few raised eyebrows. I came across it when reading the newspaper (The Daily Mail, so petit bourgeois, I know!) in an article about Cigar Guy. It struck me as rather similar to the photo on my blog, which I love.

(By the way, I looked at my stats - 284. I was very excited that people from Denmark read my blog (DENMARK! I have to do a post on that...) and that someone from India looked at a post on their iPod. So yeah, don't be intimidated or anything, but if you look on my blog, I KNOW. Maybe next time you could leave a comment? Help a brother out? I don't really give out the URL too freely - I'm rather self-conscious - but apparently lots of people have got to my blog from searching for blogs from people that like Snow Patrol. Strange.)
Love, Peace and Serendipity,

PS) I just blogged about blogging. Apparently that's like committing a felony in Blogland.

Wednesday, 6 October 2010

La mia bellezza...

Next on the travel list is...
After watching Eat Pray Love (which was very long and rather patronising) I have become increasingly obsessed with Italy and, more pressingly, the Italian language.

...Although the country is rather beautiful as well.

Isn't this just the sexiest thing you've ever heard?
"Apelle figlio di Apollo fece una palle di pelle di pollo e tutti i pesci vennero a galla a vedere la palla di pelle di pollo fatta da Apelle figlio di Apollo."

Which means, uuh...
"Apollo's son Apelle made a ball out of the skin of a chicken, all the fishes came to the top of the sea to see the ball made out of chicken skin by Apollo's son Apelle."
It's the pronunciation that counts.
And as for Italian men...
73% of Italians have planned to bump into someone on purpose in the hope that it would lead to a date.

77% of Italian's regard their anniversary with their partner as the most important day of the year.

...but they redeem themselves with:
84% of Italian men agreed that lies are sometimes okay.
Thank God - no more mindless flattery. One day, men will learn that it generally induces nausea amongst any girl with half a brain.
Love, Peace and Il Dolce Far Niente,