Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Why Kids Love Roald Dahl

"The adults who looked into the hut were less impressed. The walls, lined with Styrofoam, were stained sepia from all the cigarettes Dahl smoked; there was a grotty wing chair; and wires for a jury-rigged heating system dangled from the ceiling. "You'd expect it to be grander," one woman said. But the kids saw more possibilities in a musty old hut of one's own. They liked the fact that Dahl, unsatisfied with desks, had designed a baize-covered writing board, to balance on his lap just so. And they loved that he kept, on a side table, a jar containing gristly bits of his own spine, which had been removed during an operation on his lower back. Next to the jar was a waxy-looking knob that turned out to be Dahl's hip bone, along with a titanium replacement.

"It makes a good letter opener," one little boy said of the prosthetic hip.

"Has it got blood on it?" another asked hopefully."

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Monday, July 04, 2005

No Rock&Roll Fun

"Pink Floyd's Echoes sales increased 1,343 per cent between Sunday 26th and Sunday 3rd on the HMV chain alone. The Who saw an 863 per cent leap, Eurythmics Greatest Hits rose 500 per cent and Life For Rent by Dido shot up 412%. Coldplay, to be fair, only managed a 3% sales rise, but then X&Y was already doing pretty well under its launch momentum anyway.

But remember: it wasn't about the careers, you know. The idea was to raise awareness, and it certainly has: Floyd's back catalogue has really come to awareness in people's minds."

note on the 7th--just read the Floyd are turning over profits...
To Hell with Live 8

"I'm an idiot, I know, but I just figured out that Live 8 is not raising any money for famine relief or malaria cures or AIDS treatment in Africa. It is just designed to "pressure" G8 countries into doing what's right. Thing is, guys, the G8 doesn't, (and shouldn't) care what Madonna, Elton John, U2, Paul McCartney, Stevie Wonder, Crosby, Stills and Nash, Pink Floyd, Roxy Music, R.E.M., Coldplay, Bjork, Sting, Dido, Justin Timberlake, Green Day, Snoop Dogg, P. Diddy, Jay-Z, Kanye West, Celine Dion, Tim McGraw, and Faith Hill think about anything, particularly if they won't put their own riches where their big mouths are. (Ditto Pitt, George Clooney, Will Smith, Natalie Portman and Salma Hayek.) I am in favor of harnessing the power of celebrity for global good but where's the good in this? Good God, this is a moral crime. All that money available just for the asking--all those lives that could be saved by people who won't miss the money--and these guys won't even bother to ask? They won't even allow charities to canvass the audience. Turns out the concert is NOTHING, and I mean NOTHING but moral vanity, and the exploitation of starving, sick Africans, by pampered, rich as**oles and their self-interested corporate sponsors rather than their potential salvation. This is really unspeakably shameful. "

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Sunday, July 03, 2005