Saturday, 27 August 2011
I've not read contemporary philosopher Slavoj Žižek until today. But having now read his illuminating piece on the meaning of riots, I plan to get stuck in to his work. It's free to read now at The London Review of Books. Summarised in a sentence, I'd say is asks, "What is the point of our celebrated freedom of choice when the only choice is between playing by the rules and (self-)destructive violence?"
Photo credit: Hendrik Speck
"Hackerspaces are the digital-age equivalent of English Enlightenment coffee houses. They are places open to all, indifferent to social status, and where ideas and knowledge hold primary value. In 17th-century England, the social equality and merit-ocracy of coffee houses was so deeply troubling to those in power that King Charles II tried to suppress them for being "places where the disaffected met, and spread scandalous reports concerning the conduct of His Majesty and his Ministers". It was in the coffee houses that information previously held in secret and by elites was shared with an emerging middle class. They were held responsible for many of the social reforms of the 18th century, when English public life was transformed."
Friday, 26 August 2011
Here's some blurb from Inventory (which is quite possibly my have shop):
"It's the first time we've received our Inverallan order at the beginning of the season, and we're also excited that this is our best delivery from the Scottish knitters we've ever received. Along with a pair of beautiful shawl collar cardigans, we've produced a new style of the knit cap. It's called the 'Moss' cap and with a nice bubble knit pattern, the hats are a bit less bulky and a little bit more shallow than last fall. They turned out really great, the only problem is choosing which color to get."
ps I've always had a soft spot for R.A. The Rugged Man since early Rawkus days
Via Prog Porn (see blogroll)
Thursday, 25 August 2011
Getting 'pruned' feet after your Miele dishwasher leaked on the kitchen floor
Sprained an ankle slipping on the £1 coin you left your Polish cleaner as her Christmas tip
Limited-edition Guatemalan espresso granules stuck in retina after Nespresso capsule bursts under pressure in the machine
Friction burn to the cock through wanking to 'Betty Blue'
Twisted ankle caused by quickly running from Jamie Cullum's set to Katie Melua's at V Festival
Monday, 22 August 2011
For more barbecue videos and recipes, go to saveur.com/barbecue
Sunday, 21 August 2011
Then there's Monocle magazine head honcho Tyler Brule's explanation; it's all about the garms. He's pretty much positive the rioting is belted to the "symbolism of sweatpants." Noting that 70% of the rioters wore trackie bums, Brule said, "it's a commentary on a defeated society ... when you wear elasticated trousers it's an endless cycle of bed, to misbehaving on the streets to going back to bed again."
Via Agent Scully
As forces opposed to Col. Gaddafi advance to within 30 miles of the capital, surely we are reaching endgame.
Tuesday, 16 August 2011
Here's some more info:
This film was filmed in Scotland by director by Stu Thomson (Cut Media/MTBcut) for Channel 4's documentary Concrete Circus.
Music is 'The Wolves' by Ben Howard courtesy of Universal Island Records
Friday, 12 August 2011
After his awesome hackgate article (entitled "David Cameron is in the sewer because of his News International friends") of a few week's ago, The Daily Telegraph titan Peter Oborne has followed up with a quite tremendous piece on "the moral decay of our society." It really is must-read. Below is the meaty bit. But do read it in full here:
"MPs spoke about the week’s dreadful events as if they were nothing to do with them.
I cannot accept that this is the case. Indeed, I believe that the criminality in our streets cannot be dissociated from the moral disintegration in the highest ranks of modern British society. The last two decades have seen a terrifying decline in standards among the British governing elite. It has become acceptable for our politicians to lie and to cheat. An almost universal culture of selfishness and greed has grown up.
It is not just the feral youth of Tottenham who have forgotten they have duties as well as rights. So have the feral rich of Chelsea and Kensington. A few years ago, my wife and I went to a dinner party in a large house in west London. A security guard prowled along the street outside, and there was much talk of the “north-south divide”, which I took literally for a while until I realised that my hosts were facetiously referring to the difference between those who lived north and south of Kensington High Street.
Most of the people in this very expensive street were every bit as deracinated and cut off from the rest of Britain as the young, unemployed men and women who have caused such terrible damage over the last few days. For them, the repellent Financial Times magazine How to Spend It is a bible. I’d guess that few of them bother to pay British tax if they can avoid it, and that fewer still feel the sense of obligation to society that only a few decades ago came naturally to the wealthy and better off."
Photo credit: UK in Italy (via Flickr)
Is it possible that the Levis marketing dept may have played an ace hand by releasing and then retracting during the riots. I mean I'm sure this ad has now got more attn than it ever possibly would have done if it was released during 'peacetime.'
Here's what Mark Borkowski, a PR and branding expert, told MediaGuardian:
*It might no longer be going out on the tellybox but it's still viewable on YouTube and Levis' official website, per MediaGuardian.
Thursday, 11 August 2011
Wednesday, 10 August 2011
As all my friends (and wife) joined the iPhone revolution I felt rather left behind with my old-fashioned, somewhat chunky BlackBerry (Bold).
According to multiple reports, most of the rioting has been co-ordinated via BlackBerry's closed (or 'encrypted' for the boffins) messenger system. I now look at my BlackBerry in a different light. In a sick sorta way it's suddenly become achingly hip.
Here's how blogger Guido Fawkes analysed BlackBerry's bizarre week: "Blackberry PR must be in turmoil, gone from being weapon of choice of business execs to weapon of choice for looters." On Tuesday morning, tech specialist @mikebutcher told BBC Radio 4 Today that mobile phones have become "weaponised" and that group messaging systems are "the thug-finding Guttenberg press." Eek!
Tuesday, 9 August 2011
I've spent the last two days knee-deep in the coverage of the London riots. I've read lots of explanations as to why the kids are revolting. Below, is the one I find the most convincing. It's from author Clive Bloom at The Financial Times:
"the spread of riots ... is exclusively a function of economics, not racial tension. These are events devoid of political intent: they have little in common with the student violence earlier this year, except their use of social media as an organisational tool – although this time by the disenfranchised poor, rather than the educated, politically aware white elite. These are riots marked out by the looting of Foot Locker and Nando’s – the shopping places of Britain’s new underclass. Those who have grown in a world where social identity comes from consumption find themselves barred in times of economic hardship, except by theft."
Via The Periscope Post
Thursday, 4 August 2011
Massive props to Mr Xan Blacker (complete with trade union chic orange wooly hat) for the appearance on 5.28.