Archive for April, 2009

Woohoo Take Twooooo

April 30, 2009

The earlier post has confusled some. 

So, for clarification, in my earlier post check who the author is! 🙂

Or if you can’t be arsed with clicking two clicks, just click here


More to come – try and pick up a copy of the magazine if you can



My Day

April 30, 2009

Alarm, snooze, alarm, off, up, towel, shower, toothpaste, dry, makeup, clothes, hair, earrings, phone, bag, folder, kiss, door, light, door, stairs, road, bus, metro, street, steps, platform, ticket, platform, coffee, barrier, train, seat, coffee, mmm, metro, snooze, squished, late, glasgow, platform, barrier, buchanan, central, escalator, stairs, 17, slippy, train, seat, conductor, text, hamilton, street, uws, studio, hello, computer, news, bbc, phone, record, wrap, actuality, write, bulletin, lunch, write, record, bye, door, street, safe? cross, station, wait, neds, train, text, argyll, walk, station, newspaper, chocolate, yum, timetable, barrier, ticket, platform, train, seat, read, sleep, drool, waverley, barrier, platform, stairs, street, omni, walk, door, keys, stairs, door, home, slippers, fridge, beer, couch.  Ahh.


April 28, 2009


Inspired By Seagulls – and in the finest city…

April 27, 2009

Inspired by Macca’s post and just because I absolutely love both the video AND the music (Band of Horses), here’s Danny MacAskill’s latest offering.  It’s called Inspired Bicycles, however when Dave told me to search for it on youtube I misheard him and looked up ‘Inspired by Seagulls’.

Personally I think the guy deserves a fucking medal just for showing Edinburgh’s still an amazing city, despite the tramworks.    I also love the fact that he lives round the corner from me!

Aye, Robot!

April 27, 2009

As part of my PGDip assessment I had to write news reports for the web, complete with two interviews, cutaways and links to relevant sites.  I can’t link to our uni site as it’s private but thought I’d post up my videos.   I chose to cover the Edinburgh International Science Festival – it ties in with my geekiness, plus also it meant I could meet the Honda ASIMO robot, which was being introduced to Scotland for the first time. 


  In case you’ve not seen the advert, ASIMO is the world’s most advanced humanoid robot; he’s able to run, climb stairs, kick a football, dance and conduct orchestras. What’s most interesting about him, however, is he’s able to recognise humans and speech therefore he can interact.  The idea is eventually the technology will be developed to help around the home of disabled people, carrying out simple tasks according to need.

The first one’s an interview with William de Braekeleer from Honda.  I don’t know about anyone else but to me he’s the epitome of a robot scientist, he’s so enthusiastic!

Interview number 2 was with Dr. Sethu Vijayakumar, Professor in Robotics at the University of Edinburgh – again an amazing interviewee due to his enthusiasm for robotics.  A ten minute interview became forty minutes and I ended up adding an extra couple of questions just out of sheer curiosity.  Needless to say I ended up with far more footage than required therefore editing took a little longer than originally expected.

Almost Famous

April 19, 2009

Music fans get their kicks in a variety of fashions.  It used to be buying the new album on day of release, preferably a special edition only released for five minutes with some kind of weird and wacky packaging.  Shiny. 

  You’d run your hand over the sleeve as you exit the shop, clutching the bag tightly to you as the excitement grows to get home and savour the delights of the new tunes. 

  In these days of downloading I have to say the magic, for me, is lost.  Much of my music is downloaded – it’s easier and cheaper, plus I move far too frequently to risk the upheaval to my CD collection, therefore they remain in storage (thanks Mark).  There’s no sleeve, just a digital representation of the artwork, jostling for position in the itunes library and somewhat cramped next to my hundreds of remixes.  There’s no CD case to sit, proudly, on my desk, alerting passers by to the presence of my new purchase and subsequent ‘cool-ness’ that can be deemed from being the first in your group to own it.

  Gigs have somewhat surpassed the record-purchase.  To own a coverted ticket for a small-venue gig of a major-label band earns a certain degree of kudos.  One friend of mine has, on display in a glass frame, tickets from every gig he’s ever attended.  Alas – mine are in boxes stored in various locations in hope that, one day, they will be reunited in their glory.  I’ve attended hundreds – maybe thousands – of gigs.  Clubs, stadiums, arenas, festivals.  Every ticket was begged stolen, borrowed or frantically queued for over the phone or on Ticketmaster’s frustrating website system.  Then there are the ones you missed, or couldn’t quite get the ticket for.  For me the regrets are Massive Attack August 2004 – couldn’t make it due to assignment due the next day (I still have the ticket), Arctic Monkeys NME tour April 2006 (sold out in 10 mins, mostly to ticket touts) and Regina Spektor, Queen’s Hall Edinburgh 2007 (I needed money and someone was willing to pay through the nose for them!). 

  I’ve been in gig-limbo these last 6 months due to uni – no time, no money – but uni is ending and the thoughts are returning to normal.  However I’ve upped my game. 

  For a clue as to how, watch this space…all will be revealed.


The end is nigh.

April 14, 2009

…nigh?  That’s possibly the first time I’ve ever used that word.

  Last July I posted that I was launching a foray into the world of news journalism.  Nine months later and i’m two weeks from the finishing line.  To say I’m counting the days is an understatement; what in God’s name possessed me to go back to university!?  Had I forgotten the endless days of unrelaxation and guilt at not being in the library?  The poverty? The frantic cramming before exams and that miserable day before a deadline when you truly believe it’s never going to be ok again.

  Right now I’ve not got one assignment to do, not even two, but three at least.  A TV piece due in next week to be edited in Final Cut.  I have my topic: Edinburgh Trams.  I have my interviews in the bag – TIE and the SNP.  I have my establishing shots of Princes St, dug up and noisy with pipes exposed and a confusing maze of ‘pedestrians this way’ signs.  What I still don’t have is an edited smooth beautiful piece.  I have yet to do my ‘piece to camera’ .  This involves perilously setting up my camera on the street and daring to walk far enough away from it that I can then deliver a smooth piece of journalism, no hair out of place and praying for two minutes of ned-free airtime.

  An essay on public affairs – granted I wasn’t interested in this topic AT all at first.  What I knew about politics would fit quite neatly on a regular-sized (nae Christmas specials for me, pal!) postage stamp.  One thing I have gained from this course is an understanding and I’m grateful that finally I understand what the heck FMQ’s, recess, PMOS and spin doctor all mean.

  My topic? Spin in the media and whether the the reporting of politics is damaging to the democracy due to fascination with personality and comment.  I’m actually finding it quite interesting (shhhh…don’t tell).  If you haven’t read it already, take a look at Blair’s final speechEU BLAIRI’m in two minds.  As a newly qualified journalist I spend my days sifting through publications, researching facts and lifting quotes.  The one hard and fast rule of journalism is ‘fair and impatial reporting of the facts, no comment’.  So I’m confused as to when and how it became an everyday occurrence for comment by journalists.  There are a few whose opinion is of interest – Jeremy Paxman, Robert Peston, Charlie Brooker.  But what of these hundreds of columns of unknowns?  The argument could be that they may become ‘knowns’ someday.  But somewhere within the comment I lose track of the fact, the real news.

  The third piece i’m working on is a web report, incorporating video.  Why bother?  Well, in the job market as it stands there is no place for a newly qualified journalist: fact.  Too many experienced journalists are out of work and willing to take on the roles normally reserved for trainees; assistant, runner, officer.  Instead the tactic is to be as competent in multimedia as possible; hence I am now qualified in TV, radio and web journalism.  My web piece is on the ASIMO robot, which came to Edinburgh last week for the science festival.  asimoI’ll post a link to my piece as soon as it’s completed, as the inventor is brilliant – he’s the epitome of the crazy scientist, bushy eyebrows and all, and does a great demonstration to my camera of ASIMO’s antennae.


It’s doubtful I’ll get a job right away but hey ho, at least I can now shoot credible video and my voice no longer sounds resembles a squeaky chipmunk, thanks to Larry and her voice classes. 

  Bring on the summer!

You know you love me….XOXO

April 9, 2009

What is it about Gossip Girl that girls love?

I’m an intelligent, educated and independent woman with more than enough to fill my life – career, a love-life, friends.  So why do I find myself compelled to know what’s going on with the Upper East Siders?  I can’t help it – it fascinates me.  The total unreality of this world where 17 year olds have penthouses and take coke in the back of limousines, attend masquerade balls and wear couture.


I’ve narrowed it down to two areas:

One – Fashion.  Once we had Sex and the City.  Granted, the outfits were hideous and no one could possibly imagine anyone actually wearing them.  But the labels, the shows….the Manolos, the Dior, the Prada…phew….it was worth it just for those.

Gossip Girl’s taken the reins – these girls wear the kind of outfits originally championed by Clueless – innocent but sexy, schoolgirl meets vamp.  Their party outfits make Victoria Beckham’s wardrobe look cheap. 

Two – gossip.  Let’s face it, women LOVE to gossip.  How many times have our beautifully sculpted (aye, right) bums literally just hit the seat before the words ‘oh my god, you’ll never believe what I heard…’ are utted by an enthusiastic pal just dying to share the latest.  Yes, it’s wrong. Yes, often it’s bitchy.  But girls will be girls.  So recently I’ve been making an effort to keep the gossip to a minimum.  Perhaps this is why i’m letting a TV show take over?

Does anyone else think though that the gossip side of the programme isn’t as prominant as advertised?  For those of you in the dark, this programme revolves around a mysterious ‘voice’ (voiced by Kristin Bell of Forgetting Sarah Marshall, and more importantly – Heroes – fame).  This voice is the mysterious Gossip Girl, whose website of gossip is supplied by the over-privileged.  No one knows who she is, but supposedly it’s impossible to get up to anything in this town without her finding out.

Should I ponder this any longer? 

Nah – Jenny’s going to a sleepover at Blair’s house and they’re playing truth or dare.

Love you.  XOXO

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