Friday, January 30, 2004

What's a Mos Def?

Mutterings continued.

And why has he been cast as Ford Prefect? And who is Zooey Deschanel? Why do I have a sinking feeling about the HHGTTG movie or am I just being premature?

Empire Magazine has announced its nominations for the Empire Award. No real surprises, except perhaps that they've nominated Sean Astin and Viggo Mortensen for Best Actor gongs. They've also nominated the wonderful Mackenzie Crook (Gareth in The Office) for a Best Newcomer for his performance in Pirates. The 2002 awards night had a running gag about Ian McKellen fancying Ewan McGregor - 'I've never worked with a more encouraging, helpful and agreeable actor, he was absolutely wonderful. Even if he does fancy Ewan McGregor.' Christopher Lee on co-star Ian McKellen

Grant, on his blog, pointed us in the direction of the online Hamlet game. Here's a review from the Official London Theatre Guide - "Shakespeare: The Computer Game: In the minds of many theatregoers, computer games are essentially devil spawn, which keep our goggle-eyed youngsters glued to their screens and out of the auditorium. However, in a move which showcases the notorious cunning of the theatrical community, steps are afoot to introduce our youth to the joys of theatre even while they are jabbing their thumbs and waggling their joysticks at the screen.

Some theatre-inspired computer games were doomed to fail: the Waiting For Godot game for the X-Box consisted solely of the player looking at a blank screen which flashed “game loading, please wait”. The equally unsuccessful Harold Pinter game for the Gameboy Advanced, due perhaps to a bug in the programme, would randomly pause for vast periods of time.

As is so often the case with anything theatre related, William ‘The Bard’ Shakespeare provided the solution. Will’s plays, packed as they are with action, intrigue, murder and magic are ideal computer game fodder and make it possible for children (and adults) to learn about the most important plays in history without even knowing about it. It has always been something of an embarrassment to me that, despite my exulted position in the thespian community, I had never seen, read or even heard of the play Hamlet before I started the research for this column, so now seemed a perfect time to see what the exciting Hamlet Online Adventure could teach me about what is apparently quite a good play…

Well, I have to say that I had a whale of a time playing the game; I played the part of Hamlet and after fraternising with Horatio and Ophelia (who complained rather a lot) I finally got to kill my uncle before, annoyingly, I got killed myself (I hope I haven’t spoiled the ending for anyone). The game seems to preserve Shakespeare's dialogue ("How'th my wovewy boyfwiend Hamwetty-Wamwetty?" croons Ophelia) but some of my more cynical colleagues claimed that this Hamlet computer game altered the plot. However I truly feel that I have fallen in love with the play thanks to this game and I especially love with the part where Othello and Juliet run away together and start a new life in Lilliput. "

Thursday, January 29, 2004

That was the week that was.

Mutterings continued.

Friday again tomorrow.

The red panda cubs were on the telly the other night and our latest arrival will be on the news tomorrow. I think.

I made a comment on the iinet.general NG a couple of days ago about how much I hate the Skyshow. A friend at work said to me yesterday that she was having dinner with friends on Oz Day night and one of them commented about someone on the NG having a whinge about the Skyshow. "Wonder if that's Pam." said Kim. Yes indeedy it was! My influence is everywhere!

Wednesday, January 28, 2004

I do not look like that!

Mutterings continued.

The new passport has arrived. Christ, what an awful photo!

Before I forget, a fun site. Karl the Fish. It looks a great store. Well, any shop that sells pirate gear is good.

We had a Tempest production meeting last night - I've been promoted to Deputy Stage Manager and I'm getting a bio in the program! Never had one of those before. I hope to god I never have to step in as SM as I know my limitations and SMing is beyond them!

It was Nick Mason of Pink Floyd's birthday yesterday. He was 60. How can a member of Pink Floyd possibly be 60?? It was also Alan Cumming's birthday but he was only 39.

"Former Sex Pistol John Lydon was set upon by a group of hungry ostriches on tonight's I'm A Celebrity ... Get Me Out Of Here! challenge." And who says ostriches are stupid?

Monday, January 26, 2004

Hurray for Peter Jackson.

Mutterings continued.

Four Golden Globes for the Kiwi Hobbit (well, 2 for him and 2 for Howard Shore).

The Oz Day fireworks have started - I can see the higher ones from my chair. Lord I hate this day! Living on one of the main roads in South Perth/Como means we get drunken, loud traffic passed the windows until the early hours of the morning. What is it about this kind of event that makes people think the laws no longer apply to them?

I've just seen a trailer of Hellboy. It looks very interesting. Let's hope the trailer isn't the best bit of it. The website.

Sunday, January 25, 2004

One Night in Bangkok

Mutterings continued.

I've been searching for large chess pieces and board to use as set dressing for Tempest. I did a trawl on the net and discovered a chap in Perth who was selling a Reynard the Fox set. The kings are about 200mm high and the others pieces slightly smaller. Apart from the rooks, all the pieces are animals - the pawns are rabbits, the kings are lions, Reynard is a bishop. I bought the set today and just love it. I've just done a bit of search for Reynard and discovered that the chess set is a classic and based on the animals in Goethe's poem "The Animals of the Forest". And a new set, identical to the one I've just bought, is worth US$286, without the board. Here's a picture of it. The matching board, made from polyurethane is Au$200, mine is wood. At $80, I think I've got a bargain.

Full day of rehearsals tomorrow. SM Pat has asked me to stand in for her tomorrow so I'll get to see the thing from go to whoa. I'll have to leave early, however, as Main Roads are closing off the Freeway exits to South Perth at 4pm and I won't be able to get home!

Saturday, January 24, 2004

Interesting day.

Mutterings continued.

I took part in the MST3K panel at GenghisCon this morning (Hi Elaine!). It was my first and a lot of fun.

And then I headed out to Garden City to pay the balance of my air ticket and car hire. I've booked with Hertz and will pick the car up in Stratford - because I've paid for it before March 31, I get upgraded from a B to a C category car. In 2000 I hired a Vauxhall with a ludicrous reverse gear - there was a sleeve thingie on the gear stick that you pulled up, rather than pushing the gear lever down and across as you normally do. I ended up injuring my middle finger and having to slather loads of Ibuprofen cream on it. In 2002 I got a Ford which was much easier to drive (being a Ford owner myself), although all the levers were on the wrong side of the steering wheel, resulting in the windscreen wipers going on to indicate I was turning left or right.

Happy Birthday Adrian Edmonson.

Friday, January 23, 2004


Mutterings continued.

Received an email from DVDSoon to tell me the Raffles DVDs I ordered in December have arrived in stock and are being packaged up ready to send. Yay! And the replacement case for the ROTK CD arrived from DStore. Unfortunately I can't work out how to open the back panel to put the back cover in (I broke the other one getting it out!).

Still waiting on my passport.

Songs that stick in the head - one of the Horticulturalists came into my office the other day and said, "What's this song and who wrote it?? 'Heaven, I'm in heaven....'" It was Irving Berlin's Cheek to Cheek, of course. And it's been stuck in my head for about 3 days! She has no idea why it's stuck in HER head having not remembered hearing it for years. It was used to great effect in Branagh's Loves labours Lost.

Happy Birthday Rutger Hauer, wonderful in Blade Runner and gorgeous in Ladyhawk.

UFO . And from NASA .

Thursday, January 22, 2004

Paranoid? Moi?

Mutterings continued.

This morning the corellas came to me - there was a large flock of them flying over the units and landing on and falling out of the Jacaranda tree behind us. Fabulous sight. Then I got to work and they'd followed me.

Got home to a letter from the landlord advising of another bloody rent inspection. Always happens just before a production when I'm in full props creation mode and the place looks like backstage of the Dolphin has exploded.

I had a great night at Scarborough last night. The weather was lovely and the ocean a real picture - sailboard races and people in glider thingies hanging from the back of boats. The knives Leece loaned to me are very cool. We didn't want to draw attention to ourselves by putting the knives on the table in full view of the rest of the restaurant, so I put my bag on the floor and we sneakily transferred them from her bag to mine. Much less obvious!

Happy birthday John Hurt - 64 today. And yesterday Tom Baker was 70.

"Magazine blunder directs walkers over cliff

Britain's biggest-selling hillwalking magazine has apologised after the latest issue contained a route that would have led climbers off the edge of a cliff." Obviously not fussed about people renewing their subscriptions.

I've just done a spell check and the suggestion for 'Jacaranda'? Scranton!

Wednesday, January 21, 2004

They don't make CD cases the way they used to.

Mutterings continued.

There was a card in the letterbox yesterday advising that something was waiting for me at the Bentley Distribution Centre (hours 6am to 3pm). I was hoping it was my passport but it was the Return of the King CD I'd ordered from D Store. In several tiny pieces. Well, the case was, the CD itself was ok. It was packed in a regulation Australia Post CD box but something heavy must have been dropped on it. I rang D Store and they're sending out a new case.

While waiting for my parcel I watched the guys (in sexy bright orange shirts - not) sorting the mail for delivery. What a bloody boring job!

Off to dinner at Scarborough tonight with TUS. Leece is bringing along her arsenal of weaponry for Tempest.

Tuesday, January 20, 2004

Under attack from bagels (or is it beagles?)

Mutterings continued.

Hurrah for MailWasher and virus checkers.

There were no Corellas massing in the trees when I got to work this morning, although we did see a small flock of White-tailed Black cockatoos go over. And some rainbow lorikeets, bloody ferals.

I received confirmation of my flight and car booking today. I have to pay for the balance by this Saturday, which means a quick trip to Garden City before heading in to Genghis Con.

Justice and Morality: You believe in doing what is
right for others and maybe even for yourself.
People would consider you one with good morals,
and someone who would not let them down.

Which Characteristic From the Samurai Code Matches You Best? (You may find out your best trait)
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Monday, January 19, 2004

Invaders from Mars (1953)!

Mutterings continued.

A damn good film! Leece and Rob came over for dins last night (chili prawns, noodles, and fruit and ricotta in filo) and we watched the Muppets (Roger Moore, Veterinarian's Hospital - the continuing stooooooory of a quack who's gone to the dogs) and Invaders from Mars.

There's a web site dedicated to what they call "the scariest sci-fi movie of the early fifties". Cheap and nasty sets perhaps, but very intelligent use of archival footage of tanks, trains etc and excellent characterisation. A clever kid who's taken seriously, a woman doctor who doesn't spend her time screaming or hiding behind the hero, and a real sense of paranoia. They also did a very nice job of predicting the Star Wars missile defense system some 40 years before.

Arrived at work to a fabulous sight this morning - a huuuuuge flock of Western Long-billed Corellas (they're the white ones) had taken up residence in Onslow St and were creating mayhem. They were flying into the pine trees in the Zoo, near my office, biting off the cones, and then flying across the road into the gum trees and dropping the cones on the cars below.

Saturday, January 17, 2004

It's for a play! Really!

Mutterings continued.

It's not always easy buying props for certain productions. This afternoon I called into the local Army surplus store to buy knives and gun shoulder holsters. Managed to get the former, not the latter. Looks like I'll be making them. I find that there's something creepy about Army surplus stores - they have a range of stuff made by "Combat Readiness" that includes knife holders, torch holders and other things all in camouflage fabric.

I've had to cart around some interesting things in the name of Art - a couple of years ago I was lugging 3 rifles back and forth for Hamlet. I was a little concerned about leaving them in the store room next to the New Fortune and so would take them home and back again every night of the run. I must have looked very suss walking about with three large rifles under my arms but only one person every made a comment. Maybe I'm just not the scary looking sort (dammit!).

Final night was interesting - I drove home with 3 rifles, two skulls and a gravedigger's shovel on the back seat of the car.

I went to pay for the balance of my trip this morning. I'm booking a hire car through Hertz as part of the package but the travel agent couldn't get through so I'll finalise it all next week. I've decided to pick the car up in Stratford as the Hertz depot, and when I say depot I mean caravan, is right next door to the train station.

Friday, January 16, 2004

Boring Day.

Mutterings continued.

Off sick, headache, sore throat, feel like I've been run over by a steamroller.

Since buying the new DVD player, I've been able to watch the extras on Pirates that I couldn't before. Three good easter eggs, including an interview with Keith Richards in which he discusses Johnny Depp's character being based on him.

I watched the Dead Again DVD with commentary by Branagh - he gave Derek Jacobi concussion during the fight scene and also spent about an hour convincing him to leap to his death on the scissors. Nasty way to go, though not as nasty as being poisoned, rapiered and chandeliered as he was in Branagh's Hamlet.

There seems to be a lot of speculation and misinformation about who is really going to be in the Hitchhikers movie. Tim from the Office (shocker with names, I am) was mentioned (by his brother). The Book's voice was so distinctive I don't know he'll be replacable.

Thursday, January 15, 2004


Mutterings continued.

Tempest rehearsals last night went really well - Craig, Tony and Conrad make a very funny trio.

I had a $15 voucher for DStore so today I ordered the Return of the King soundtrack - it ended up costing $17 inc. postage. Bargain! as Jimeoin would say.

I'm starting to get excited about my trip in September. Ash and I are thinking of basing ourselves in Inverness in the highlands (just next door to Loch Ness) and visiting the Orkneys, etc. I found the addy of a lovely B and B on the net - it's quite taken my fancy and goes by the name of Gillyflowers in Dromnadrochit.

Tuesday, January 13, 2004

Tuesday lunchtime blogging.

Mutterings continued.

I have a Tempest production meeting tonight and so won't have a chance to blog. I got my props list last week and I'm already starting to stress (nothing new there). Eek! Where am I going to get 9" high chess pieces? and a boat?? Eeek eek! And tomorrow night Pat the SM won't be at rehearsals so I've got to do what she does and I've never done it before and what's blocking anyway??? WHY DO I DO THIS TO MYSELF??

Meanwhile, back in the sane world....

The cats have been feeling the heat. Gus has taken to sleeping in the loo next to the toilet bowl and Milo under the bed.

The very cool episodes of Mission:Impossible have started on Fox Classics - the ones with Mr Phelps. The ep the other night featured a cat that had been taught to open boxes and cases and lift stuff - pearls, priceless jade artifacts, that sort thing. A very useful moggie to be sure. Given the trainability of cats, I wonder how many mogs they actually used - one to walk along a beam, one to open up the case, another to lift the stuff out, another to retrieve it...

Got a couple of bargains at Dymocks on Saturday, including the 3 volume Complete Works of Lewis Carrol with drawings by Tennielle, for $20. Did you know that Through the Looking Glass is a chess game? Clever sod, that Carrol. And a couple of Sherlock Holmes - the Best of and the Return of. They're printed in the original Strand Magazine format.

Bensons World in the UK (whom I've never used but about whom I've heard good things) is having a sale and has some decent DVDs going for 7 quid. Disks include Flight of the Nagivator (fun) and Gangster No. 1 (with Paul Bettaney who seems to be popping up in nearly everything to come out of Britain). They've also got A Very Peculiar Practice for 18 quid, which I'm very tempted to get. I'm a little worried about their clientele, however, as No. 3 in their top ten is Donny Osmond Live. 8-0

I see that the US Critics have awarded best comedy to Bruce Almighty. I haven't seen the film as I'm not a huge Jim Carrey as comedian fan. I do like his more serious work a lot, however. I thought the Truman Show was fantastic and really enjoyed The Majestic.

Comment nicked from the Mausoleum Club forum -

"To get back to Press Gang, there's a bit about it in today's Telegraph Arts and Books Review. It doesn't list any extras. The review itself is a bit patronising, the way they so often are - obviously written by somebody who used to enjoy it, but feels that we're supposed to grow out of these things in time. The kind who talks about kids' shows as something that "we used to enjoy when we were younger." Twit. The rest of us still do enjoy them! Sounds like the release is still on, anyway. "

Sunday, January 11, 2004

40c! Ooogh!

Mutterings continued.

It wasn't very nice on the roads driving to and fro the folks' place for lunch today.

Had a great night with L and R last night - Jamaican main course, tiramasu (recipe from my diabetic cookbook), Hamlet given the MSTie treatment and the Muppets ("He put the lime with the coconut..."). We also watched some of the extras on my new MP and The Holy Grail disk - there's a lot on there, including a government documentary on the use of coconuts (hmm, I'm seeing a theme here....).

Saturday, January 10, 2004

I booked my ticket!

Mutterings continued.

A busy, and expensive, morning. I've booked my flights to Europe in September. Yay! I'm flying out on the 16th, arriving 6.30am in London on the 17th, 6 days in Paris on the way home and back to Perth on the 22nd October. And I finally went to the Post Office to get my passport renewed.

Leece and Rob are coming over tonight - only one MST3K left.

Friday, January 09, 2004

Lord I hate getting old (er)

Mutterings continued.

Back from the doctor's with a fistful of referrals and scripts. The blood pressure is back down (135/84 if anyone is interested) but Doc thinks it's time I had another colonoscopy (mmmm....pethidine....), mammogram, cholesterol and hormone check. I know that's probably more than anyone wants to know but I've got to have a whinge somewhere.

Well, it seems that Rowan Atkinson ISN'T going to be playing Voldemort in the next HP movie. Not according to his agent anyway. Shame, I always loved his evil Blackadder.

For a bit of (foul mouthed) fun, the Empire magazine movie insult generator .

And more silliness - the Superhero Name Generator. I am.....The Tungsten Spectre (though I prefer Expected to Know Everything About Everything Woman).

And this. Keep clicking on the different parts of the page until something happens (hint: the hookah pipe and the lock).

Thursday, January 08, 2004

US Politics Obscenity

Mutterings continued.

There was a report on Newsradio this afternoon about the forthcoming presidential election in the US. By the time the primaries come around, George Dubya will have $200million to play with just for advertising. There are no Republicans candidates against him - he has $200 million to slag off Dean.

And now for something, etc

"Archaeologists mistake 1940s patio for Viking village

Archaeologists have admitted to having been made to look "very silly" after mistaking a 1940s sunken patio for a 9th century Viking village." Tee hee. Bloody Vikings.

The Target store in Vic Park this afternoon was looking more like a Red Dot store - very untidy and a few empty shelves. I did get some bargains - it was 15% off everything day and I got MP's Holy Grail for $18.

Wednesday, January 07, 2004

Harry Potter spoilers ahoy.

Mutterings continued.

"Rowan Atkinson to play Lord Voldemort

Rowan Atkinson has reportedly been lined up to play Lord Voldemort in the next Harry Potter movie.

The Sun says the Mr Bean actor will become the personification of evil in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire."

Amusing bitchiness on movies past by Mr Cranky . I do like the 'If I Can't Pronounce the Title It Must Suck' category.

Tuesday, January 06, 2004


Mutterings continued.

Nothing much to report - no interesting mail, no exciting packages on the doorstep (unlike yesterday), no animal escapes at work.

I attended my first Tempest rehearsal last night and have commenced on the props - first up is a bottle made of bark. I was wandering around the front of the units earlier like a bag lady, picking up bits of wood and putting them in my bag.

ROTK spoiler alert!

One of the most lip trembling moments had to be Faramir riding off to certain death, while Pippin sang for his father who just shoveled food in his face. It was a very beautiful song.

Monday, January 05, 2004


Mutterings continued.

Well, what can I say? "Wonderful" comes to mind. You've read enough reviews so let's just say, "Want the DVD. Want it NOW!"

There was a poster for Hellboy in the foyer - that looks interesting. John Hurt and Ron Perlman star.

Rob got my new DVD player working - he brought cables, I bought cables, we all expected it to be as messy as it was the last time he put my system together but it took all of five seconds. And pressing the AV button on my TV remote a couple of times. *sigh* We watched a gorgeous film by Daft Punk and a really good Japanese animator whose name escapes me. I recognised one of the songs (the film had no dialogue, just music) - One More Time. It was beautifully done.

And then we watched the MST3K Girl in the Golden Boots. Crow in gold boots and a bikini! Not that you saw the bikini, just the boots. It was a shocker of a film. We only have one MSTie left - Hamlet. That should be fun.

To round off our viewing pleasure we watched some of the extras from League of Extraodinary Gentlemen (YES! I bought LXG!!). The making of Mr Hyde was fascinating - not a pixel in site, all rubber.

Saturday, January 03, 2004

Tonight's the night.

Mutterings continued.

Finally getting to see Return of the King at Cinema Gold in Innaloo. Yay! I've had the ticket in my bag for what seems like weeks (hmm, it IS weeks) and the day has finally arrived. A comfy chair, a select clientele and nachos and beer delivered.

It's also my dad's birthday - he's 75. Mum told the people at the seniors' village where they now live and they all got up and sang Happy Birthday at lunch.

Friday, January 02, 2004


Mutterings continued.

Another short week - dunno how I'll cope with a full 5 days next week!

I had the day off so I went to Carousel in search of a Return of the King calendar (no luck. Anybody know if they are still around?) and ended up buying a lovely vintage travel poster calendar instead. And a shirt and some mascara and a candle holder thingie.

Then to the Good Guys where I bought an LG DVD player for $145, down from $169. Unfortunately it can't be played through video players (to stop the naughty copying of disks by evil persons) and my system (if that's what you'd call it - more a conglomeration of players, recorders, cable boxes, etc) is set up so that everything goes through one of the vcrs. It took the genius of Rob M to set it all up and I think the poor lad will have to do it again for me as my brain just goes, "Nuh, no way" when it comes to working out which cable goes where. It does the same with chemistry and multiple regression.