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Good evening

(1) A work friend is spending his six-week sabbatical in Perth, Australia -- the west coast generally. Does anyone have any suggestions for places he should go? He's a nice fellow, adventurous, and he's looking for outdoor stuff and places to eat. I'd really appreciate it if anyone could drop a few suggestions.

(2) UKNova has been providing wonderful things for me lately. Torrents for two long-unavailable BBC Scotland series have appeared and I am hoping they are as wonderful as I remember them.

Tutti Frutti was the first big acting break for both Emma Thompson and Robbie Coltrane, a 1980s comedy-drama about a knackered 1960s rock band whose lead singer dies in a tragic cross of the deaths of Mama Cass and Eddie Cochrane, just before they're about to go on a tour of Scotland's greatest toilets. nightclubs. I watched its first repeat run and for some reason there was never another so I am hoping that it's as funny as I remember it being.

I never quite understood why it didn't get a video or DVD release. I suspect its to do with getting releases for all the 50s/60s rock classics. Anyway. Glasgow accents. Emma Thompson with an Elvis quiff. A very funny, much younger, slightly lither Robbie Coltrane.

It has a fabulous rant about being single and living alone, which I empathised with to an almost worrying degree.

Takin' Over The Asylum was David Tennant's first role, albeit a supporting one. It's another black comedy/drama about a knackered sadsack hospital DJ who ends up running the radio station at a mental hospital. I never did see the end of this -- and again, it's never been repeated when I could see it and never released on DVD. (Rights issues again, maybe?)

I can burn if so required. I'm half -watching Tutti Frutti now and it is as good as I remember.

(3) I've been reading sagas. By which I don't mean Norse stuff, I mean potboiler romances set in 1930s Liverpool. Good god, the bad, uninspired writing and plotting. Yet I wanted to turn the page and I read the damned thing in three days. People popping out babies and getting married out of nowhere. One-armed sparky heroines. The heroic Irish mammy. Absolutely inexplicable.

Now I am reading Stuart: A Life Backwards by Alexander Masters, which is as fantastic as the saga was ridiculous. Anyone else read this?

Next: The People's Act of Love by James Meek.

(4) I am very out of practice at writing these things. Writing anything really.

(5) I watched two Stargate: Atlantis episodes. Once you have the characters fixed in your head, why on *Earth* would you ever want to watch the damned thing again when you can read fanfiction that is of almost infinitely higher quality?

(6) Work <--- said in a sonorous tone, as if echoed off a tombstone and filtered through a miasma of painful despair. Or something.

(7) predictivememo, I hope you're doing all right.

Comments

( 47 comments — Leave a comment )
minnow1212
Mar. 20th, 2006 02:42 am (UTC)
3. >One-armed sparky heroines.<

Oh, this is very sad, because I got to that line and was instantly sunk and wanted to read!

Does the heroine have a happy ending? Maybe she randomly meets a prosthetic-arm maker?

6. Work <--- said in rueful, sympathetic tones
infinitemonkeys
Mar. 20th, 2006 10:34 am (UTC)
Well, she's like best supporting actress (almost literally since she is an Actress With A Tragic Past Who Is Now Unable To Go On The Stage, due to her uniarmed state. So she marries the heroine's big brother who is an Accidental War Hero.

Do you have the whole Catherine Cookson saga thing there, or is it all regencies?
curiouswombat
Mar. 20th, 2006 01:07 pm (UTC)
Accidental War Hero

I know! I know! ::jumps up and down:: He lost an arm as well whilst doing heroic deeds, and they have one good pair between them! Please, please let it be so!
infinitemonkeys
Mar. 21st, 2006 12:43 am (UTC)
Sadly no. But you nearly got it right. He was shot in the knee while rescuing a wee French tyke from strafing Nazi bombers on the road to Dunkirk and OMG HE HAS A LIMP.

A limp what?

Ba-dum-ksshhhhhh!!!
minnow1212
Mar. 20th, 2006 02:52 pm (UTC)
…please say the accidental war hero is missing a leg. Please.

>Do you have the whole Catherine Cookson saga thing there, or is it all regencies?<

I’d never heard of her, but she is showing up on Amazon.com with summaries like the following:

Intelligent, beautiful and out of place in the squalor of her humble home in the "fifteen streets" slum, Kate first captivates the blue-blooded Dr. Rodney Prince when he delivers her illegitimate daughter, Annie, one oppressively cold Christmas eve. His fellow physician, Dr. Davidson, finds Kate a plum "situation" with some kindly Protestants, the Tolmaches, who educate the girl far above her station, feeding her desperately thirsty mind as she struggles to raise Annie on her own. Kate and Dr. Prince are periodically reunited over the next few years as Annie grows into a sensitive young girl and Kate herself blossoms into a thoughtful, dignified woman. Dr. Prince's obvious affection for Kate fuels gossip among the denizens of the 15 streets, who suspect he's Annie's father. Gradually breaking down class barriers, Dr. Prince slowly surrenders to his love for Kate and her adorable daughter. His own cold and calculating wife, Stella, strings him along with affected gentleness and cheer, only to reject real intimacy and the possibility of children. Stella's conniving, a hysterical patient's mad whims and the doctor's near death in the Great War threaten to thwart Kate's happiness, but love prevails in the end.

This fills me with an inordinate amount of glee. I must hope that it is in my library. His cold and calculating wife! Who doesn’t want children, the bitch! Plus a hysterical patient’s mad whims! Glee, I’m telling you.
(Deleted comment)
infinitemonkeys
Mar. 21st, 2006 12:49 am (UTC)
…please say the accidental war hero is missing a leg. Please.

OMG! A million points to you, minus one for him not actually havin' the leg off. He has a bad limp from his grievous war wound. See above comment for details.

RE: Catherine Cookson.

Good lord that you've not heard of Catherine Cookson. Her books were the most borrowed from libraries for roughly an ice age or two, until she inconsiderately popped her clogs without nominating a Virginia Andrews-style ghost-hack.

This fills me with an inordinate amount of glee. I must hope that it is in my library. His cold and calculating wife! Who doesn’t want children, the bitch! Plus a hysterical patient’s mad whims! Glee, I’m telling you.

They're all like that. A lot of them have been made into Quality TV DraaahmaaaHh (tm) but my dad calls all the heroines Pissy because the first one he saw had a heroine called Prissy (she lived under a tree until the squire rescued her. It was a long story).


Anyway, Catherine Cookson is litterachure compared to what I read this weekend, which was highly enjoyable pants. I quite like some Catherine Cookson. You can knock 'em off in a day or two.
minnow1212
Mar. 21st, 2006 01:46 am (UTC)
Wow, I am snickering at a limping war hero. I am going to hell *g*

>she lived under a tree until the squire rescued her.<

Uh...huh.

>It was a long story<

It would have to be, wouldn't it?
infinitemonkeys
Mar. 21st, 2006 12:52 am (UTC)
Libraries in Britain, I should say. I always forget that her stuff probably doesn't travel so well because I assume she's like Georgette Heyer
nestra
Mar. 20th, 2006 02:51 am (UTC)
I watched two Stargate: Atlantis episodes. Once you have the characters fixed in your head, why on *Earth* would you ever want to watch the damned thing again when you can read fanfiction that is of almost infinitely higher quality?

Pretty pictures. And the unquencheable desire for as much McKay snark as possible.
veejane
Mar. 20th, 2006 02:59 am (UTC)
I was going to say, so that when people pop up with all manner of LJ icons, I know what they are talking about. (Or sometimes, still don't, but at least know where the picture came from.)

Also, because making fun of hot stupid people is like watching rugby: lots of pointless running around, some bellowing, lots of muscles. (Sadly, no taped ears.) What's not to love?
cofax7
Mar. 20th, 2006 03:28 am (UTC)
Well, and the justification for saying, "These people are too stupid to live!" in a doom-laden voice.

It's nice to see the shiny new thing descend to depths of stupidity generally only reached by shiny old things in later seasons. (XF season 8, Farscape S4, for instance)

But I do rather like Teyla. If they make her deeply stupid in S3 I shall be very. put. out.
infinitemonkeys
Mar. 20th, 2006 10:42 am (UTC)
Yes. I was surprised by how much I liked Teyla, but not enough to keep watching (except I probably will)

And you're saying XF only reached depths of stupidity in S8? You are too generous. It was jumping the shark, then jumping right back with regularity since mid-S5. But I like the old thing anyway.

Oh, speaking of STUPID, WTF is this Arthurian donkey-bollocks in Stargate? Are the writers getting high with a copy of Thomas Malory?
veejane
Mar. 20th, 2006 08:28 pm (UTC)
Well if it's got to be donkey bollocks, Arthurian donkey bollocks are -- yeah, I got nothing.

It's more silly than even I expected (not being a huge SG1 person), and only slightly ameliorated by the rare moments of halfway-decent swordfighting that sometimes ensue.
minnow1212
Mar. 21st, 2006 01:51 am (UTC)
My theory on the Arthurian thing is this: they're keeping their costume designers happy.

Here's what happened--we used to see much more of their enemy the Goa'uld, who had very bad glittery "WTF are you wearing" taste in clothes. The Tok'ra (the good goa'uld) also tended towards shiny and skimpy. But now the Goa'uld have mostly been defeated. So I think their costume designers were getting bored, and perhaps complained, and when asked what would make them happy, had just been to a Ren Faire or some such and decided that robes would make them happy. Robes for everyone.
infinitemonkeys
Mar. 20th, 2006 10:36 am (UTC)
Well, doh, I had forgotten the whole prettiness dimension of joy. Yes, there is that.

Maybe it's that the episodes I watched were not rich with the snark
nestra
Mar. 20th, 2006 03:04 pm (UTC)
I would ask which episodes you watched, but I don't want to be that annoying person who insists that everyone must love their current fannish object of glee. So if you'd like to hear me blather about certain SGA episodes, I'm willing and able. If not, I'm also happily able to blather about Second Sight and Clive Owen, which I just finished watching courtesy of Netflix.
infinitemonkeys
Mar. 21st, 2006 01:19 am (UTC)
I watched one with Kaylee from Firefly as a wraith, which was okay, one where I can't remember much of what happened but McKay and Sheppard didn't seem to like each other very much, and the season finale. I watched pieces of last season but not a bit of it has lodged in my head.
veejane
Mar. 20th, 2006 03:00 am (UTC)
On another tack entirely,

lither Robbie Coltrane

This phrase really deserves some visual proof. I don't believe there ever was such a thing.
infinitemonkeys
Mar. 20th, 2006 10:54 am (UTC)
*slightly* lither. I shall try to get visual proof
se_parsons
Mar. 20th, 2006 05:00 pm (UTC)
The hideous 1980s Sci-Fantasy craptacular, KRULL, provides visual proof.
kirbyfest
Mar. 20th, 2006 03:13 am (UTC)
I watched two Stargate: Atlantis episodes. Once you have the characters fixed in your head, why on *Earth* would you ever want to watch the damned thing again when you can read fanfiction that is of almost infinitely higher quality?

::nods::

Good to see you. And I hear you on the sonorous-toned work issues.
infinitemonkeys
Mar. 21st, 2006 12:53 am (UTC)
Hello. SEP tells me you'll definitely be round here in summer if all goes to plan. Allow me to book an evening, if you have a spare one going.
kirbyfest
Mar. 21st, 2006 01:46 am (UTC)
If I'm there (::glares at budget::) you will not escape me. You will be stuck with me for at least one evening.

I shall keep you posted.
(Deleted comment)
(Deleted comment)
infinitemonkeys
Mar. 21st, 2006 12:55 am (UTC)
Good evening
I think I was discounting the power of the pretty.

Don't worry about Tutti Frutti, I'll get it to you (The files are a bit big for yousendit because my upload speed is so awful)

I keep waiting for them to release Fortunes of War on DVD. I almost want to write a letter to the BBC, but that way lies madness.
(Deleted comment)
snacky
Mar. 20th, 2006 03:26 am (UTC)
(5) I watched two Stargate: Atlantis episodes. Once you have the characters fixed in your head, why on *Earth* would you ever want to watch the damned thing again when you can read fanfiction that is of almost infinitely higher quality?

See, now I have to ponder this. Since for me, love of the source has always come before love of the fic. And SGA leaves me cold (did you know there are WOMEN on the show? Fandom, you mislead me so! *g*), so I have no interest whatsoever in the fic. I am not sure how to enjoy the fandom, if I can't enjoy the canon.

::ponders::
cofax7
Mar. 20th, 2006 03:30 am (UTC)
Whereas I'm still happily reading the fic, while being increasingly disenchanted with the canon. Maybe it helps that I was never all that enchanted with the canon to begin with. I STR my initial response was that it was disturbingly Trek-like, for reasons which escape me now. I was unimpressed, but the fandom towed me along regardless.

And the fic--oh, my, the fic is breathtaking. ::shrugs helplessly::

Oh, and as Barbara says, "pretty!"
(Deleted comment)
infinitemonkeys
Mar. 21st, 2006 01:02 am (UTC)
did you know there are WOMEN on the show? Fandom, you mislead me so! *g*)

Heh. I KNOW! And the girls aren't even stupid eyecandy, though one of them is somewhat bustilicious. They are supposed to be smart and sometimes, THEY EVEN ARE!!! (Let's face it, you can't rely on that always being true on telly)

I started out in fandom watching and reading Doctor Who in its most cardboard-walled, cheesy, scenery-chewing era.

Frankly, it was a blessing to run screaming from canon for years at a time. Maybe that was formative.

jcello
Mar. 20th, 2006 04:19 am (UTC)
I love Emma and Robbie and David and would gladly trade the American goodie bag of your choice for DVDs. (Yes, I have a region-free player.) Pleeeeeeeeeeaze?
infinitemonkeys
Mar. 21st, 2006 01:17 am (UTC)
It's not available on DVD anywhere and the picture size is very small and fuzzy indeed -- they're dubbed off 1987-vintage videotape.

Would you like the .avi files? You'll have to watch them at your computer, unless your DVD player is very nice indeed, but you can hear all the dialogue and that's the important bit. If so, please punt me your address via email and I'll send you copies.
barkley
Mar. 20th, 2006 04:24 am (UTC)
People do not blow things up nearly enough in fanfic. Nor do they shoot at things!
cofax7
Mar. 20th, 2006 05:08 am (UTC)
Hey, I totally blow things up!
infinitemonkeys
Mar. 21st, 2006 01:02 am (UTC)
You just can't get the staff these days
mandysbitch
Mar. 20th, 2006 12:39 pm (UTC)
A work friend is spending his six-week sabbatical in Perth, Australia -- the west coast generally. Does anyone have any suggestions for places he should go?

Somewhere else?

okay, well, let's see... if he's outdoors-y he should do fine. The outdoors is one of the few things the place has got going for it. Can I recommend renting a car? The public transport sucks and you really need a car to go anywhere interesting. There's this place called "Rent a heap" (you'll find it in whitepages.com.au) and it's *very* cheap. The city is boring - the more interesting inner city places to hang and get good food are Leederville, Mt Lawley, Subiaco, Fremantle. Fremantle is very much a cafe strip and has decent coffee and tourists and markets etc. He'll want to take a trip to Rottnest island and ride a bike around - maybe go for a weekend? Fantastic place for an outdoors type - windsurfing, snorkelling, bike-riding.

About five hours North there's Kalbarri which has pretty steep gorges if he likes to do a little rock climbing - and is really a beautiful place. Again, hire a car.

Eating - I don't eat out much being all vegan-like. Ask unwinding - she gets out more than I do. Leederville has a good range.

Weather page here. Don't think it won't get cold. It can and will. Okay, I've been in the UK in the WInter and it's hardly a comparison but he should bring a jacket or jumper - he won't live in shorts and t-shirt (entirely).

Ummm... avoid the locals. They look pretty but they're really monarchists. It's weird. Don't mention daylight savings.

Local music is awesome - does he like a bit of indie/ Alternative? Check out the Rosemount, Amplifir, Swan Basement (in Fremantle), the flying scotsman (for more electronica). Avoid Northbridge. It's the nightlife spot but it's tacky and it's full of suburbanites.

Any questions? There will be a test later. :)
infinitemonkeys
Mar. 21st, 2006 12:42 am (UTC)
Somewhere else?

Ah. Oh dear. *g*

He's been all up the east coast because he lived there for a couple of years and did some travelling so I think he wanted somewhere else. Thanks for all the suggestions though
muridae_x
Mar. 20th, 2006 01:45 pm (UTC)
Tutti Frutti is obtainable????!!!!

Excuse the excess of punctuation. You've just filled me with wild glee. I loved the show to the extent of even buying the soundtrack album, but was VCRless in those days and never managed to see the final episode on either occasion it was shown. I'm now very much hoping that that can be remedied.

(I now have Love Is Strange running through my head. I hope you're satisfied.)
infinitemonkeys
Mar. 21st, 2006 12:33 am (UTC)
You would like .avi copies? I have checked them and they all seem to work just fine. Quality is very ropey but then someone has hoiked it online from a video copy, so it's only to be expected
muridae_x
Apr. 1st, 2006 03:14 pm (UTC)
Ack - got distracted by decorating and stuff and didn't get around to replying before now. I now have a uknova account, so I'm downloading them myself, but thanks muchly for the offer. And yes, having completed the download of the first and last episodes I can see what you mean about the video quality but it's better than nothing.

Right now though I've been distracted by another shiny item on uknova: Coast to Coast, with Lenny Henry and John Shea as a couple of 60's soul DJs being pursued around the country in an ice-cream van by gangsters. *sigh* I'd forgotten what a crush I had on John Shea back then.
se_parsons
Mar. 20th, 2006 04:59 pm (UTC)
Please send old BBCTV fabulousness!

You will soon be getting all sorts of stuff from me as well.
infinitemonkeys
Mar. 21st, 2006 12:39 am (UTC)
Oh, you're getting it, no fear. You might need to consult an online Glaswegian/American English dictionary though. Only my love of Christopher Brookmyre and (some) Irvine Welsh is keeping me going.
(Deleted comment)
infinitemonkeys
Mar. 21st, 2006 12:37 am (UTC)
One armed plucky heroines sounds... interesting. Hmm. I think I hit my published badfic quota this year with Fangs for the Memories, though.

I have never read any of those crazy vampire romance novels. Maybe I am missing out on the Laurell K Hamilton and her ilk phenomenon. She's one of the best-selling authors in Europe, I read somewhere (can't remember where) which goes to show that tastes in trashy fun do not vary. It's all a matter of fewer or more toilet humour and/or knob gags depending on whether you're German or French.
ex_dashenka
Mar. 22nd, 2006 10:59 pm (UTC)
Hey Macaco Infinito!

Greetings from your slack-ass friend from way back when! I hope you are well and everything is fab in Swinging London. :) If you feel like it, I'd love to be friended again, but I would also understand if you didn't want to. Either way, hello! :)
( 47 comments — Leave a comment )

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