slemslempike: (games: scrabble)
On Thursday we went to see Julian Clary. He was very lovely, and he sang to us, which I enjoyed. He also did impressions of Paul O'Grady and entered on rollerskates. He made a young man from the audience come and take them off for him, and then became agitated because he was blocking the audience's view of him. In the second half he was dressed as a ringmaster, and did psychic stuff with two men from the audience, which was rather sweet.

On Friday I went to see Back to the Future II, which the Dukes were showing as part of their 80s thing. Tickets were £2, and it was very lovely. I think I've only ever seen II once before, so most of it awswas a loveyl surprise to see again. I liked "this time it's really really personal" for the Jaws film, and how neatly they used the 80s theme bar. I was less taken with being reminded how they attempted to mind-wipe Jennifer, then knocked her out and left her alone and unconscious in various places. But Michael J Fox playing his own daughter was very sweet. And it was in 2015, which is practically now, and I do not have a hoverboard.

On Saturday I went to Manchester to see [livejournal.com profile] irrtum. I had found out that Urbis is closing at the end of the month (to become the National Football Museum) so we went there. I'd never been before, and I am kicking myself now because it was great. We saw two of their exhibits, one looking back at their best successes, and one about Manchester and television. In the best of there was a series of boxes glued together that you could stick your head in and look at different dioramas, and a show of youth manifestos (Rachel and I were rather dubious about some of them). The TV one was great, talking about Granada as acting in opposition to the BBC and widening the voices represented on TV, showing clips of programmes and news events.

Following some delicious pies in the Old Wellington Inn we walked down to the Contact Theatre to see A play about crime and scrabble. )
slemslempike: (x: keira)
Freemasons' Hall. )

Leisure Games, the Stephens Collection. )

Nation. )

Adam Hills. )

We watched Doctor Who on Sunday. OH GOD IT WAS EVERYTHING I THOUGHT IT WOULD BE, AND LESS. Roll on regeneration.
slemslempike: (girlsown: end of term)
LUSU comedy. )

The Clink, Tower Bridge, Ripper walk. )

Matt Tiller. )

Simon Bird. )

It's Debateable, Ragged School Museum. )

Also recently I had two Nicola Marlow connections that I forgot to mention. In the Royal London Hospital there is an invitation to Nelson's funeral that she could have wrapped with her other Nelson things, and one of the songs in Cymbeline is Fear No More, though I think that Dr Herrick would scarcely have approved of the new setting.
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Friday
Royal London Hospital Museum. )

2 museums down, 199 to go! I had intended to get the tube back from Whitechapel, but it was so nice talking to [livejournal.com profile] khalinche that we kept walking until we got to Mile End.

Comedians - lots of spoilers. )
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I walked over to the Botanic Gardens, and meandered through some nicely manicured lawns and ignored signs telling me to find out about our potato ancestors. I went into a room which was rather grandly described as an aquarium, and got very worried about an albino frog. It was in a tank, all puffed up and entirely immobile. I thought it might be dead, and wondered if I ought to mention it to someone, but then I couldn't decide if maybe it was some sort of statue and I would look silly.

I mostly went to see some Louise Bourgeouise works. They're called "Nature Study", and done in thick strokes of shades of red. I really liked them, all about birth and motherhood. There was a series of two figures, one with a foetus in, and another with a penis, and the one with the foetus had a lot of vagueyl rounded lengths that could have been arms and breasts, only there were five of them. It was quite comforting-looking. The building was a bit odd. Rather than the galleries being open, you can to open doors to get into things, and this isn't a laziness qualm, it was just that everything was painted very white, and it seemed like at any moment you might stumble into someone's private office. In the lift someone had not only corrected a misspelling in biro, but written "shame on you!" above it.

On the way back out I went to the "aquarium" again, and the frog wasn't where it was. The surface of the tank hadn't been disturbed, so it couldn't have been taken out. Then I noticed what seemed to be an albino grenouille sticking out beind a rock at the back, so probaly it's okay, unless the tiny little fish ganged together to drag it to a more dignified resting place.

It started to rain, so I bussed up to the National Portrait Gallery, and went to see the Vanity Fair portraits. Having read Jezebel, it was quite sad to see that, yes, all the hollywood women covers on display had all the women of colour on the inside folds. And after a while I got very bored of all the women lying down and naked. I did like Raquel Welch's picture, which was her looking gleeful, with the naked bodies of the USA men's swim team naked behind her. (Just because it seemed like a change from sportswomen always having to get their kit off, and she was older by quite some years and just looked really cool.) I also went to look at the twentieth century gallery (I rarely look any further back in portrait galleries because I rarely know who anyone is, and the styles all look the same to my uneducated eyes, so it's not so interesting). There was a very nice portrait of Stephen Hendry, with the cue ball as a globe.

Last week I was in a charity shop and bought The Vampire Game, which I never had when I was little, and always yearned for. I can't quite remember the specifics, but the main point is that there's a vampire figure, and the top hat comes off and it's a red ink stamp in the shape of a bat. A disadvantage of living alone is that I have no-one to play it with.

I watched 8 out of 10 Cats, and Claudia Winkelman and Gaby Logan were both on it, being adorable at each other. Several shots of Gaby staring lovingly at Claudia, as well she might. Mostly though, I have been watching Dead Like Me, which I really like. The most minor of spoilers. )

I went to see Gone Baby Gone, which was excellent.
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Film Festival

I saw Stone of Destiny. )

After a day's break I returned to see Dummy ) and Love and Other Crimes. )

On Thursday I met up with [livejournal.com profile] debodacious and equally charming daughter, and we went to see A Film With Me In It. )

Friday was Transsiberian. )

On Saturday I saw Princess of Nebraska. )

Finally, I saw Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day )

As of this week I will be back to making as much use of my Unlimited card as possible, as there are several films that came out while I was otherwise engaged that I'm looking forward to, like Secret Agents and The Edge of Love. I also want to see Teeth, although I think I was misinformed or just overly hopeful, as I thought that a horror about vagina dentata might be quite a feminist thing, but the trailer I last saw suggests otherwise. Still, it'll be something to do, since the television continues appalling.

And now there is but a month to wait until the Fringe and the Book festivals start, and I will have to spend it trying very hard not to buy tickets for everything I want, but to wait and see. I have tickets for my main desires - Debo, Posy Simmonds, Kristin Hersh and The Globe's Romeo and Juliet in the Botanic Gardens, and for the Fringe previews.


Shakespeare

I read The Player's Boy and The Players and the Rebels as a nice break, and then I decided to read the Bill Bryson book on Shakespeare (thanks, Lizzie!) to see where Antonia Forest might have got her source material from. And Ned's dead. I didn't know, and it quite upset me. He died at 27, which is probably not much past the end of the books. I hope he was still there when Nick came back from his voyage. Apparently he's buried in Southwark Cathedral, so I might try and see it next time I'm there.

I thought about Nick quite a lot when I was watching the histories last month, as we started with Richard II and he had to decide whether to inform, and then later with his Feeble not surprising anyone that he was willing to go to war (Feeble here was played by a woman), and having to deliver the lines even after having heard Anthony Merrick say it as his neck speech. I didn't know the histories (or indeed the history) very well, so I didn't follow all of it, exactly. But it was quite great. I remember there was a bit where lords slapped each other with gloves, and quite a lot of French nobles hanging around on ropes, and Katherine wasn't as awful as she mistly is, and the funny bits were funny, which is quite an achievement , considering. I was sitting next to some people who were also there for the entire series, and we started off saying "thank you" for letting each other past, and built up to friendly hellos each day and then I had quite a nice conversation between parts of Henry VIth with the man next to me about the interrelation between history and current politics, and the iniquities of university funding cuts, and whether or not disciplines truly had integrity that might be lost in interdisciplinary undergraduate work.


Art

The first weekend I was here I took myself off to the Museum of Modern Art and the Dean Gallery. They're right next to each other, and I can't remember what I saw in which, as they've merged somewhat in my head. There was an exhibit on maternity, and I liked some of the pieces (like the replica birthing doll), but the signs were very irritating, as they tended to declare that the artist "transcended race and gender" without saying how they had done so, and actually I disagreed quite strongly that some of them did in fact do that, and not just ignore them, which is not at all the same thing. There were some pictures of showgirls on Broadway that I rather liked. Oh, and there was a HUGE robot in one room, which went all the way up to the ceiling and you could go and stand between its legs and look at all the metal. The Dean Gallery had a sort of library which I liked very much indeed, and I'm sorry that I have no academic interest in art so I can't go and use it. It was small, and the staircase sort of built itself into shelves that looked stuffed with interesting books.

I went to the Royal Academy exhibition, which had a lot of things that I wouldn't have on my walls if you paid me (mostly because I didn't like the colours), but which had won prizes. I've forgotten the name of the artist who did my favourite thing, even though I looked it up specially, which was of the Tower of Babel, with lots of rows of tiny elaborate silhouettes of people marching along and then winding their way up the tower and then some seemingly falling down from the top, all in black ink.

I have Plans to go to the Portrait Gallery, and the National Gallery in one of the coming weekends, and I hope that when I'm in Glasgow for work I can sneak off to the Museum of Modern Art there too.

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