Wednesday, 29 October 2008

Are we going mad?

I had to write a quick note to try and share my frustration over the 'furore' surrounding the Andrew Sachs/Jonathan Ross/Russell Brand answerphone-gate. If you haven't seen it in the news (well done you) Ross & Brand left an inappropriate voicemail on Andrew Sachs answer-machine regarding his granddaughter and then broadcast it as part of a radio show.

It has now become front page news in the Sun, Daily Mail etc with cries of 'off with their heads' and 'sack them!'. I read an article on the BBC website today which actually featured a comment by the PRIME MINISTER critising their "inappropriate and unacceptable behaviour" . Another quote stated "the prime minister is involved and the leader of the opposition is involved."

Yes, Ross & Brand left a bit a rude message which was in poor taste (especially considering Andrew Sachs is 78) but is this really necessary? Does our government have nothing better to do than get involved with commenting on this? Our political leaders have become so populist trying to rally votes from all areas of society that they lose any real respect I might have once given them. I want to know that my Prime Minister is looking into issues of health and governance, not whether or not Russell Brand overstepped the mark on the radio.

Andrew Sachs grandaughter (who Brand joked he'd slept with) is speaking to the Sun asking for both protaganists to be sacked. It's strange really - if it had happened to my family I would be doing my best to stay out of the limelight and let the story die down in public to avoid further distress. I would pursue an apology - but in private. She didn't ask for this to happen but surely she now has a say in how it is dealt with. The cynical side of me notes that according to some reports she is an aspiring model/actress - all this publicity can't hurt in her quest for fame.

Overall though I'm just curious as to the level of 'public outrage' that the papers claim. Is there mass outrage? Yes the BBC have received a number of complaints but funnily enough those numbers of complaints seem to have increased since the papers have been flogging the story daily. How many people actually originally listened to the show on air and decided to complain? I am in no way condoning what they said or did but the level of mass hysteria the press are trying to whip up is just ridiculous. Are headlines about 'vile behaviour' and 'mass outrage' over-used to the point of numbing readers to real events that deserve those kind of reaction? When the Rwandan Genocide was positively unreported in some international countries whilst thousands were dying I think we have to question who chooses the information we are fed by the press.

Monday, 27 October 2008

Folding Pages

Oh Monday Monday. Always comes around a little too soon. The clocks went back yesterday day though, so technically I did have an extra long Sunday. Whoop.

I had the joys of no electricity for most of Saturday - there is a big building site at the end of my road and they managed to cut through a power cable leaving me powerless from 9am til about 4pm. I really didn't realise how much we rely on power.. I couldn't drink tea, do my washing, clean my house, put the heating on, have a shower or watch continuous episodes of ER on dvd. So with my Saturday plans gone, I decided I'd do something old fashioned that didn't require electricity.. I'd go buy a jigsaw! I've been getting very addicted to jigsaws again recently after helping a friend with a stupidly hard one of a Koala. Then I found this website... Jigzone oh deary me... addicted, me?

So this weekend, could I find a real life jigsaw to do? No I could not. Is it too old fashioned? Are the lo-fi versions of everything slowly being made obsolete? For example, I'm still really unconvinced by eReaders. I like the feeling of a book in my hand, turning the pages, bending the spine for the first time and getting that really satisfying crease down the middle. I'm a page folder when it comes to books, I mark my place by folding down the corner of the page. I don't believe in keeping books pristine - I like my books to be well-read, thumbed and scruffy. I can't imagine reading a book from a little computer screen.. ugh!

Oh well, I'm not going to give up my quest to find a shop that still sells Jigsaws... I'm probably just looking in the wrong place. Anyway... I did notice that there is an online shop on the Jigzone website that sells them. Is that cheating?

Friday, 24 October 2008

Why does yoga make you fart?

Sometimes I think that my life feels like a series of linked unfortunate and embarrassing events whereby I trip literally or metaphorically over and put my foot firmly in my mouth. I'm fully adjusted to the fact that I have no control over my limbs or the words that come out of my mouth. I had not however, realised that it wasn't only me who suffered from random humilation at the whim of my body or wandering mind.

I've been attending a yoga class for the last 4 weeks in an attempt to get a little fitter, perhaps to try and get back the flexibility I had when i was at uni prancing around in my physical theatre classes. (I should point out that I am 28 not 50 but still, I'm definately seizing up and walking like an old lady at times). Yoga is surprisingly hard work, honestly guv'nor it really is. Some of the postures I'm completely able to do whilst in others, well, my boobs just get in the way. However, I'm loving the classes although there are a few little issues....

I can't stop getting the giggles. You see, people fart. Not me, I hasten to add, for once lack of control over my body is not an issue. However, some of the ladies in the class can't seem to stop the odd trumpet from erupting, proudly heralding their working bowel system. BRRRRRAAAAPPPPPPPPPP! Honestly. I completely thought the whole farting in yoga thing was a myth. So this morning I googled "why do people fart in yoga" and lo and behold there are 812,000 results. I even found unofficial fart ettiquette for the gym (the sum of which is to say hold it in till you can get to the changing rooms)(or pretend it was someone else). Everyone is doing it!

I looked through some of the results out of curiousity and then found this entry on a forum. I promise I didn't make this up. I actually had to do a silent creased-over laugh at my desk over this one...

"when it happens to me, i say a quick (and quiet) 'excuse me!' so that those near by--likely the only ones who heard it--also get the excuse me. when it happens in classes that i teach, i tell them that it happens to everyone.

the hardest are the vaginal gas releases after menstruation. whether i have or haven't practiced during menstruation, the first shoulder stand after menstruation always is executed with a 'vaginal fart' (though technically not a fart), and as far as i can tell, there's no way around it (mula bandha or no)."


Oh my god. Now I have to worry about those kind of farts too? Blimey.

The other reason I get the giggles in yoga is the lovely lady who always puts her mat next to mine. She's a little older and always says hi before the lesson. She seems really nice. She also snores like my dad at the end of every session when we do the relaxation. Every week since we began she falls asleep and snores away really loudly. What if people think it's me???? Is that a really bad thing to worry about? Why can I not switch off my own mind enough to not even notice what someone else is doing? Why does it make me laugh?

I have yet no answers to these questions, although this week I had a little snooze myself in the relaxation and it was lovely... until I woke up and I'd dribbled down my chin. Brilliant.