News and comments from Arthur

Reading Festival

 Monday 27 Aug 2007, 3:31 PM

Arthur attended the Reading Festival on Sunday for a day full of loud rock music and hot sunshine. And boy was it hot. Arthur had purchased some sun cream in advance and applied it in liberal doses but still managed to forget that ears needed protecting as well as the rest of his face and neck. Thus Arthur now has very red and sore ears. He also seems to have picked up a cold and aches all over having been stood up for almost 16 hours solid. It`s a good thing there was some good music to make all the pain worthwhile!

The day got off to a bad start with an hour long queue to get a ticket - Arthur was paying cash (to avoid a booking/card handling fee) and there were 2 queues, one for card tarnsactions which was quite short but apparently slow moving and one for cash which was much longer but apperntly moved quicker. Well, that was a load od crap - they onyl had one person serving the cash queue and she moved at the speed of a dead snail with alzheimers whereas the card queue had 2 competenmt people serving. The other lowlight of the day was the food - Arthur expected it to be overpriced (and indeed it was!)but it was even lower quality than expected. Arthur was looking forward to his giant hot dog with onions and pizza slice but both were somewhat cold and not very tasty.

The highlight of the day was without doubt Nine Inch Nails who just semmed so much slicker and more professional than everyone else. They sounded great unlike some of the ohters who just decseneded into unharmonious noise at times. They also put on a crackingly good lightshow which was actually part of their choreographed preformance rather than an afterthought. Arthur likes strobes lights and smoke machines and NIN had them aplenty!

Other good acts were Lost Prophets and the headliners Smashing Pumpkins who, like NIN, were technically good but they didn`t really put on a show; their lighting, whilst nice, wasn`t anything special and they just stood there for 90 minutes barely moving from the spots where they started, cranking out the music.

Still a good day out; Arthur will just have to get his act together next year and buy a ticket in advance!

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Blood and Needles

 Thursday 23 Aug 2007, 11:30 AM Some of Arthur`s blood

Today was an eventful morning for Arthur in that he took a big step in overcoming his phobia of needles - he had a blood test.

Having spent a number of weeks getting professional help (i.e seeing a psychologist!) Athur had been working up to actually having a needle stuck in him by doing lots of reading, watching videos, skin pric tests, handling needles etc. Things really got going when he had his first Tetanus jab in many years a few weeks ago. Then , the really big step, was to have a blood test which happened this morning.

In the end it wasn`t too traumatic - Arthur was certainly nervious be he didn`t pass out as has happened on previous occasions. And the result was a tube full of blood! Hooray! Nothing was actually being done with the blood (probably went straight down the drain or used as a flavour enhancer for the food served to NHS patients) but it was still good to get it done and Arthur wil feel happier about getting it done in the future.

The journey is not over yet though; Arthur atill has to face the delights of the Canula and injections/things being inserted in the back of his hand...

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No-need-to Rush Hour

 Saturday 11 Aug 2007, 10:23 PM Rush Hour 3 poster

Oh the pain! Oh the agony! Totally unbearable! No Athur isn`t talking about his piles, he is is fact referring to Rush Hour 3 that he went to see at the cinema last night. OK, so maybe it wasn`t that bad, but it veered between bad and OK. Certainly not as good as the previous 2 films in the series.

Perhaps Arthur is just getting old and no longer finds "Chris Rock shouting race related jokes at everyone he meets" funny any more. Or maybe the film was just poo. Or maybe it was a combination of the two. The plot wasn`t up to much - as each character was introduced Arthur instantly worked out who they were and what their motivation was. Ok, so Rush Hour movies aaren`t exactly supposed to be Oscar contenders but the action scenes were rather lame too with Jackie Chan looking very fed up with the whole thing and simply going through the motions with no imagination whatsoever just to get his big American pay cheque (criminally Chris Tucker was paid more even though he has absolutely no career these days outside of these films, yet Jackie Chan is an internatioanl superstar known the world over). Arthur would put it down to Jackie Chan`s age but Rob B Hood, his previous Hong Kong film from onyla year earlier, was far better even though it was just 3 Men and a Baby with martial arts! What was particularly annoying was that Jackie Chan played it totally straight and it was left to Chris Tucker to provide all the comedy, which is a shame as Jackie does comedy so well in his films.

Perhaps Arthur will go back and watch the previous films to see if he still finds them enjoyable; at least that will rule in/out the "Arthur getting old and not liking this modern MTV rubbish" angle. Watching the films on DVD wil also have the advantage of not having to put up with a brainless (younger) audience who howl with laughter at stuff that blatantly wasn`t the slightest bit amusing or American jokes that would have meant nothing to UK audiences - these stupid people just laugh on demand even though they don`t know why (mindless chimps). To be fair there was some funny stuff - Arthur liked the "Yu/Me" bit simply becasue it was so cliched and predicatble and the sweary Nun was good apart from the parting race related gag which was totally unnecessary. Of the action scenes nothing really stood out - they were pretty much forgettable.

The worst of the summer films so far. Up next week is Bourne Ultimatum and Arthur suspects, based on the reviews he`s seen so far, that this will be the exact opposite - an intelligent, well made modern action film, perhaps with a few genuine jokes that aren`t a black man shouting lots.

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Saturday Stuff

 Saturday 4 Aug 2007, 11:29 PM Poster for I`m a Cyborg but that`s OK

After the trauma of facing up to the fact his favourite toothpaste was no more, Arthur thought life couldn`t throw any more obstacles in his path, at least for a few weeks. How wrong was he...

Today Arthur found out that his local comic/movie/TV/Games shop that has been around for 20 years, is closing down in a month. All the staff got told out of the blue and were given one months notice. What`s worse is that Arthur now has to face the difficult task of sorting out a new source for his Ninja Turtles comics! Oh cruel fate!

Arthur spent the afternoon doing not a fat lot although that may have been more down to the fact he was suffering with piles than anything else! He managed to watch the new Chan Woo Park film "I`m a Cyborg but that`s OK" which was a bit of a departure from his previous ulta-violent revenge films but still had a really good quirky style and a bit of action.

Arthur then had an evening BBQ to cheer himself up and cooked some farmers marlet sausages he`d bought earlier that day. The BBQ almost ended in disaster though as, for some reason, the gas bottle valve got stuck on the open position even when the BBQ gas regulator was taken off. Arthur can definitelty recommend not breathing lots of bottled gas! The flow was temporarily stopped by shoving the regulatior back on. it was only after giving the gas bottle a few good whacks with a bit of wood (Arthur chose not to use anyhting metal to avoid the possibilty of creating sparks!) that the mechanism freed itself and the value closed properly when the regulator was removed.

Having had quite enough excitement (and bottom pain) for one day, Arthur sat down and spent the rest of the evening watching Jaws 2 on TV and sorting all his socks into pairs and throwing out the ones with holes in (he`d braved the perils of pikey Primark to buy some new ones the week before, but that`s another story....)

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Tootpaste Tradgedy

 Wednesday 1 Aug 2007, 11:16 PM

Arthur`s chosen brand of Toothpaste has been increasingly difficult to fibd in recent months. It was never a particularly popular toothpaste, Metandent SR, but Arthur stuck with it as he really isn`t a big fan of minty things (mints remind him of travel sickness as he would always get travel sick on long car jorneys where his parents would consume minty sweets and thus he associates the two) and he didn`t like the idea of going through the trauma of changing to a new brand. In fact the the only ohter brand Arthur ever consumed was Camberwick Green strawberry flavoured childrens toothpaste (Actually that`s a slight lie as he recently dabbled with some Colgate Sensitive). Arthur also finds Mentandent SR has a good, crisp, fresh taste, especially when compared to the Colgate Sensitive he tried, which left his mouth feeling dull and lifeless.

Tragically it looks like Arthur now has no choice but to find a new brand as the reaminign few shop[s that used to stock it (Asda and Waitore) now have none at all and don`t even have a space on their shelf. It looks like the days of SR tootpaste are finally over. Arthur only has half a tube left and may save it for a special occasion (possibly to clean his teeth after consuming his one reamining Texan bar he is saving for a special occasion and the remains of a bottle of the original Sainburys fruity brown sauce also awaitng some occasion that is special....).

All the tootpaste choices; Arthur doesn`t even know where to begin his search. OK, Morrisons.... but which brand? Stay tuned for an exciting update in the coming weeks.

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