at the movies

I took my grandson S to watch Ice Age 3 at the local multi-screen Vue cinema in Staines this week. He’s great fun to take to watch a film and as it was an afternoon screening I promised him we’d have lunch at the cinema. He’s a big fan of hot dogs and Ben & Jerry’s ice cream and all the other  crap they sell in their foyers. But I’d forgotten just how crap the food choice is for more grown-up tastes. From a very very short list of hot foods (two items) I ended up choosing natchos with extra mushy jalapenos and this container of bright orange gloop which they assured me was the melted cheese dip. No it wasn’t. It was re-processed lipstick. Urgghh. Why is there nothing decent to eat at all in a cinema? Is it inconceivable that they could have a decent fast food place and maybe even a bar located within one of these multi-screen complexes? I reckon they’d do OK from those of us older than 17. Anyway the film was great. For all of 20 minutes we were the only ones in screen room 1 and we were so looking forward to whooping and hollering all alone to the antics of Manny, Diego and Sid – my personal favourite. We booed quietly when the other 15 joined us during the Pearl and Dean bit until a very old white-haired guy came in all alone. I whispered to S that he probably remembered the last Ice Age – and I didn’t mean The Meltdown. We giggled like only granddads and grandsons can. Such fun.  Sorry old guy, hope you enjoyed the movie:

Ice Age 3 Dawn of the dinosaurs

odd sights

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You must have noticed something rather odd about the Chancellor of the Exchequer, Alistair Darling. It’s not that he’s still in a job (which is inexplicable rather than odd), it’s his extraordinary eyebrows. How on earth does he end up with pure white hair and jet black bushy eyebrows? Just look at them; it’s like looking at Jimmy Saville after he’s received a face transplant from Grouch Marx. Very odd. And this got me thinking about  things that look decidedly strange, unbelievable or plain funny.

Take sport. Have you ever seen anything as ridiculous as the nonsense sport of competitive walking? It’s like watching a group of people who are attempting to run a race but they can’t get beyond a scuttling action because they’ve got a very large stick of cucumber  lodged up their bums. It just looks so unnatural. How can they describe this as sport and why do you they persist in allowing it as an Olympic event? Its world-wide popularity?  I don’t think so. Do you know anybody who does it or enjoys watching  it?  No, but some people with very odd habits must get tuned in and turned on by it.  On that basis morris dancing must be a shoe-in as the 2012 demonstration sport – and I bet we’d do no better than bronze even though we are the only country on earth which does it. 

But even in the world’s greatest game I still get amused by some of the things I see. Have you   
noticed the tendency, particularly amongst the Premiership centre back fraternity, to wear their socks completely unravelled so that they extend above the knee? This has the effect of making the socks look like stockings which are very fetching of course…on women. But on John Terry and Rio Ferdinand  it makes them look like the chorus line from Lady Boys of Bangkok. Bobby Moore must be turning in his grave at the sight of them. Sigh.

And have you ever noticed that strange warm-up routine that coaches get players to do in training sessions and on the touchline? I can’t find a vid to show you but they jog sideways and swivel at the waist with arms out swinging to the left then the right. I guess it’s intended to limber up the players’ upper bodies but get 3 or 4 subs doing it in sequence and it looks like the chorus line warming-up on the touchline. It’s about as camp a routine as you can get. And nobody seems to look or feel embarrassed, apart from me. Back in the day I had to endure squat thrusts from a rather sadistic footie coach. ….but that’s another story.

This seems to be turning into another camp rant because the next thing which has caught my attention a lot of late is the number of cars coloured pink. Pink! I know we spend most week-ends with the kids in Brighton, a town which has it’s bohemian side, and you  might expect to see a few cute-coloured Clios down there. But no it’s here in staid Staines that pink pops up on Puntos and Polos with alarming regularity. Why would you buy a car coloured candyfloss? Who do you think’s going to buy it from you when you’re fed up of people pointing at it? And why is Staines so shockingly pinkophile? It’s a complete mystery to me but if anyone can throw some light on it, I’d be interested to know. Pink Staines – sounds like something Blackpool hoteliers have to put up with when they change the sheets each morning. Nice. 

Staines is also famous for Ali G and his Massive (noun not adjective – though who knows for sure with Sasha BC?). And I’m pretty sure that a stylistic feature of the Massive is the jeans worn very low on the hips by fellas showing almost all their underpants. Now this makes the crotch of the jeans feature somewhere close to their knees and it makes them look and walk like they’ve truly cacked their pants. Who dictated that this was a look to be copied? I’ve worn some right fashion faux pas, as I’ve admitted to before on this site, but this has got to be the most unenviable and unfathomable style statement ever hasn’t it? Do young girls really find this fashion look attractive? Really? If so can somebody please explain its appeal? 

Finally a list of things that are very odd to look at but I can’t be bothered to expand upon them:

–  cravats, sovereign rings, facial tattooes, men wearing lurid-coloured crocs or flip-flops on the train to work;

–  that Shirley lass off Eastenders who’s at least 50 years of age but wears skirts so short they’re almost belts. Cover up love.

–  Newcastle Utd’s new away strip – lemon and custard coloured! It’s a trifle odd;

–  Real Madrid’s triumphalist public unveilings of their new signings. It’s a Real circus show and oddly amusing and how I pray that it all ends in tears;

–  the Marquess of Bath, owner of Longleat House and a complete wacko. He’s shrill-voiced, rarely washes or takes a bath (a little odd given his title) and has a wilder dress-sense than John McCririck. Somehow the extraordinarily rich aristocrat has managed to have a wife and more than 75 ‘wifelets’ in his time despite looking like this. If that’s not odd, I don’t know what is.

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I could add to this list a lot and will do so over the next few days but happy for you to suggest other oddities!

pp

michael jackson memorial

Because we’ve been so busy recently I’ve been distracted from writing many blogs, even though there’s been so much rich and wonderful material to write about. And I guess the biggest story of the last week or so has been about death, sadly; Farrah FM, Man U’s credibility in the transfer market, British tennis hopes in the Wimbledon semis (yet again) and the unique Michael Jackson. Sorry to be a bit flip but I’ve just been watching the MJ tribute concert and I’m struggling with this portrayal of him as someone ‘pure’ as Brooke Shields described him, incredibly. Continue reading

friendship

Here’s the thing; I’ve had cause recently to wonder about the nature of friendship. I thought we were  rock-solid in this regard with a decent number of truly great friends. I wouldn’t say we were the sort of people to collect a huge circle of mates but over 30+years we had formed some very strong relationships, some very deep and loving. But stuff happens and sometimes things get loose-wired or even disconnected. It can cause a lot of hurt but things also work in the opposite direction. 

Continue reading