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Archive for the ‘General’


Happy 50th Birthday Coronation Street 1

Posted on December 10, 2010 by noncon
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coronation street 50The longest running TV soap is 50 this week, and I watched the hour long live episode last night, although I had to stop watching it regularly a few years ago, as it takes up so much time, being on god knows how many times a week these days. I can’t remember what year it was; but it was straight after the brilliant Karen left.

After the live episode it showed a countdown of the nations favourite story lines, and although I was an avid watcher, it wasn’t the psycho-killers and love triangles I had most remembered. I had watched it for several decades religiously and it is odd little pieces of dialogue that I find have stuck in my head.

I remember in the 80s, Hilda telling Kevin Webster and Terry Duckworth (while fighting over Sally)  that “we were all young and daft once…”.

I remember in the 90s, small time model Raquel telling arch enemy Tania that if you put blusher on first, then powder on top, it looks more professional and that’s how the models do it (a tip I still take note of every day!)

I remember Fred Elliot commenting in The Rovers that he isn’t surprised that Curly and Emma are in a relationship because you always find that professional people end up with other professionals. He said “…You get doctors and lawyers, you get nurses and fire fighters… teachers and… (after some thought) …other teachers…” I have underlined the part of each word that contained his repetitive higher-pinched inflection. Wish I had a recording of that. It’s much more funny to hear it.

I remember how Jack always called Vera “my little swampduck” (which I used for one of my animated Boyfriend Girlfriend movies).

And on Christmas Day 2001, when Roy’s cafe was supposed to be a shelter for the homeless, Steve MacDonald ended up in there for some reason. And when he tried scrounging a second can of beer, Norris, who was volunteering, retorted; “It’s one can per tramp!”

And one of my favourite secondary story lines was the one where elderly Percy was bragging to everyone how his budgie Randy, had lived for 18 years, and how he was going to get the Guinness Book of World Records involved, as he was certain he had the world’s oldest budgie. But his friends were then forced to tell him that Randy had died many years ago and they had felt responsible, so they had replaced him! That story was not mentioned of course, as it was mostly the main big story lines people remember.

But I am glad it was a comedy moment that won the top 50 favourite Corrie moments (out of a large majority of tragedies), thanks to Blanche being anything but sympathetic towards an alcoholics anonymous group. I missed that, as it was since I stopped watching it, but Corrie has always had some of the best humour – much better than a lot of British sitcoms IMHO.

I also lucked out the other day when I checked out BBC4′s The Road to Coronation Street, thinking it would be some lame documentary of info I’d heard before. But it was a superb dramatisation of Tony Warren’s (writer and creator) struggle to get the show on our screens in 1960.

I thought Jesse Wallace was excellent as Pat Phoenix “the bird who burnt its bum” Pat said! It was also good to see Michelle Holmes in it too, who played Tina Fowler in the Street back in 1989-1990.

I wonder how long the legendary soap will keep going. Maybe it will never stop going. It’s one original star from the first episode William Roach (Ken Barlow) can’t be immortal, but the show could well be. Who knows?

Why Do Dogs Wag Their Tails? 0

Posted on November 10, 2010 by noncon
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This morning I greeted my dog Sadie (a mixed race mut, believed to be staffy and German Shepherd) in the usual way. I said “Hellooo!” in that special sing-song voice reserved only for animals and toddlers, and she returned the greeting in her own wag-tail way.

It made me think that I’ve probably never been as nice to humans as I am to dogs. Is that terrible? Or is it a blessing, seeing as I would probably be arrested if I was? What if we stroked people’s hair (personal hygiene standards permitting)? Or if we gently rubbed people’s hands if we think they are nice, whether or not we actually know them? God – the thought is making me feel sick.

Amazingly, dogs have their own versions of social etiquette by use of their tails. Most people think they only wag their tales when they are happy. Not so. All the dogs I have known (a lot) have wagged their tails when they were:

  • happy
  • guilty
  • not sure what you mean, but are willing to appear as if they do

which makes me convinced that a tail wag is a dog’s equivalent of our smile, which, don’t forget, we also do when we are embarrassed and uncomfortable. So there you have it. That is why dogs wag their tails.

Two TV License Stories 0

Posted on September 16, 2010 by noncon
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tv licence storiesI was on a train this afternoon (on my own) and was sat near a group of about six people. They were talking about the British TV License (Licence UK sp). Basically for those of you who don’t know; anyone who owns a TV in the UK has to pay £145.00 a year for a TV license, or they can be fined up to £1000.00. The BBC (that has no advertising) is totally funded by the TV license.

One of the group confessed he had never had a TV license before or since he was married, and does not plan to get one either. His friends argued that the cost of the license for everyone else is so high because of people like him who refuse to pay.  He then put forward the argument that he should not have to pay for a TV license because he does not watch BBC channels; only the other commercial channels. And he then reamed off the programs he likes to watch, and of the ones I’d heard of, they all seemed to be on terrestrial UK commercial channels.

His friends could not believe he doesn’t watch a single BBC program and quizzed him saying stuff like “what, you don’t watch sport on the BBC?”, “you don’t watch The News?”, “not even Doctor Who?” He still claimed he didn’t. Then after a long list of programs, he declared “The only BBC program I have seen in years is Hustle”.

A drama about a group of con artists.

I think only one member of the group saw the irony, but this particular statement quite tickled me, and I had to do that thing where you feign a coughing fit to try and cover up your stifled giggles. Serves me right for listening in, I guess. Despite being a nonconformist in many areas, I conform to buying a TV license as it’s cheaper than a £400 fine, which a friend of mine once had to pay.

Which reminds me of another funny story. A few weeks after my friend got fined in 1991, an annoying relative invited me to go out, and I was not in the mood to go out with them, so I made up the story that I could not afford to go out as I had just been fined £400 for not having a TV licence. (I had got a TV licence).

I had only wanted to stop them badgering me to go out, but my tale of expense also forced them to rush out and buy a TV licence themselves! Some fibs get you double points.

Andrew Scott: Ant and Dec’s Lovechild? 2

Posted on August 10, 2010 by noncon
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Ant and Dec's Baby: Andrew ScottMy friend was one of the extras in Sherlock (2010)  so I watched it and even though she wasn’t in the last episode, I was still intrigued enough to watch as the “moriachi” result of the first episode wasn’t explained.

I’m sure we were supposed to be scared by the villain Moriachi (Mariachi?), but I was too distracted by how much he looked like both Ant and Dec! If Ant and Dec had a baby boy, this is how I reckon he would look when he grew up (although that’s impossible of course… he’s  only a year younger than Ant and Dec ;)  )

Anyone with me on that?

You’d think I didn’t have any work to do from the image above (Heaven forbid anyone should ever come between Ant and Dec).

No Bored Singers Allowed! 0

Posted on April 04, 2010 by noncon
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More interesting observations on Musicians-in-your-city.co.uk/mids/agbs.cfm?land=uk. This site gets better!

On its T&C it requires vocalists to sing down the phone to give a sample of their voices BUT states:

“Singers and vocalists who record unmotivated/bored voice samples shall also face deactivation of their account.”

Wouldn’t that exclude an awful lot of commercially successful singers whose deliberate style is such? Every indie band I can think of sounds bored. That’s the style. God, almost every 80s artist sounded bored as hell. Depeche Mode, The Pet Shop Boys, The Smiths, Japan, The Cure, Pulp, and David Bowie (to name but a few) certainly wouldn’t be allowed to register on this site!

Isn’t it also subjective whether someone is unmotivated or bored-sounding?

And why would they care whether someone does sound bored when singing? Are they assuming that these people are just ringing up for a laugh? You have to pay to join, so that doesn’t make sense.

What if an indie band are looking for a bored sounding singer?

I think this is a ridiculous rule. The site is based in Germany despite having sister sites worldwide. Well it couldn’t be British, could it, with a rule like that?

Jaz and Keith 9 0

Posted on April 02, 2010 by noncon
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Keith joins one of The Oldest Professions

Perfect Poached Eggs Without Vinegar! 0

Posted on November 22, 2009 by noncon
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Those egg poaching pans with the little plastic dishes are useless for poaching eggs. You have to grease the plastic, which defeats the object of using no fat. then if you want a runny yolk, you’ll have to put up with runny whites too unless you want to wait half an hour.

And poaching eggs in a saucepan is no good either. You need a frying pan, in fact the perfect poached egg looks exactly like a fried egg should, but without the oil.

There is a huge poached egg / vinegar myth – you do NOT need any! Who the hell thought of that? It’s supposed to bind the egg, but eggs can bind perfectly well on their own, and the vinegar makes the eggs stink!

I manage to make perfect poached eggs every day using a frying pan, hot water and no vinegar, and yet whenever I stay in hotels I get qualified chefs telling me you HAVE to add vinegar to the water to poach eggs. I’ve even been inside the kitchens twice to prove you don’t need a saucepan or vinegar! Did they knock anything off the bill for my expertise – no chance!

If I’m having egg with chips (fries) then I won’t mind the taste or smell of vinegar, but vinegar has no place at the breakfast table, thank you.

Just a bit of salt to bring the water to the boil quicker is all that is needed. Then you just add your egg to boiling water in a non-stick frying pan and cover with a pan lid.

Once it tries to or does boil over, turn the heat down and do your toast.

X Factor’s Sacrificial Lambs 1

Posted on November 02, 2009 by noncon
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X Factor's Little Lambs John and Edward

X Factor's Little Lambs John and Edward

When I first heard that Louie invited John and Edward to be part of the live shows, I was perplexed as they clearly cannot sing, and their choreography timing is atrocious – they’re more dyspraxic than I am!

But then I remembered what I was told by someone who worked in television when Same Difference were in a similar position as John and Edward today. The only aim of the show is to make money. Advertising revenue only goes so far and the money to be made from the act who actually wins cannot be determined beforehand. But the phone lines are what shows like this are all about.

What better way to explode the number of phone calls the show will get from the public, than to throw in an untalented act to cause anger and controversy among the public?

John and Edward were specifically chosen for their ability to divide the nation. They had everything that a Sacrificial Lamb act needs:

1. For a start, not only can they not sing in tune, but they have very little strength in their voices (which if they cannot sing in tune, is a great blessing).

2. They were also twin brothers, which is seen as both cutesy and annoyingly sad and embarrassing, depending on your views.

3. They are young and naive, and don’t know they are untalented – perfect! The show can take the piss as much as they like, and the boys won’t even know!

4. They are also good looking enough to ensure thousands of teenage girls will be running up mum and dad’s phone bills.

So Simon Cowell and Louie Walsh agree beforehand that if such an act comes along, “grab em quick so we can clean up!” They must have thought it was Christmas when John and Edward came along and ticked all the boxes.

So with the twins’ only talent for frightening and angering people, the stage is set. Because there are so many more talented people in the competition, the family and supporters of the acts that really do have talent are incensed more and more each week that the boys stay in the competition. And they do everything in their power to get as many people to vote for their loved ones and try to give the twins the boot.

Several exceptionally talented acts have already been victims of this cruel TV practice including the brilliant Rachel Adedeji. But as they went out due to not enough public votes, it’s not a case of a potential winner losing out to this practice – unless they actually win!

The thing that confirmed this theory for me was last week when it was Big Band week. Louie could so easily have given the boys a classic big band song and got the lads to dress up smart and just stand and sing, but no. The boys are now a circus act, so the more vomit inducing colorful dancers there are, the better. The more dancing the twins have to do the better – they’ll be even more out of breath and the poor singing will be even worse. Also the less serious the song the better. ‘She Bangs’ by Ricky Martin was the perfect song to maximize ridicule for the Grimes brothers.

I actually wonder if the female judges are even in on this conspiracy. Dannii shakes her head in despair before remembering to continue the diplomatic charade. Cheryl in particular seems to genuinely believe that Louie is in love with Jedward as they are now known. Then again, Simon will probably have instructed the judges all to act their socks off when commenting on John and Edward’s performances. But comments like “Out of all the acts, yours is the one I most look forward to” tells me Cheryl’s no actress.

I doubt the Grimes can win, but what do I know? Is it possible that the Sacrificial Lambs could sacrifice the integrity of The X Factor itself and actually win? It would be horrific, but kind of a strange karma for the show to have its plan backfire.

About The Missing Videos 0

Posted on October 24, 2009 by noncon
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I have only just noticed that my videos are missing. It seems the site where they are hosted; Xtranormal, are making lots of changes and one of the changes was to add new directories for all the existing movies, meaning the embed codes are all out of date. Great.

So once my movies are back on Xtranormal’s site, I might get the new code and amend them. Or when I get chance I’ll probably get the code from YouTube. They’re less likely to be messing about with the code.

Anyway, that’s why Jaz and Keith, Melody and Sabrina and Boyfriend Girlfriend are missing. But my channel on YouTube is GeneralLawlessness if you were wondering what’s supposed to be in the blank spaces. Wish I could get the viewing figures on YT that I got on XN, but Jaz and Keith 3 that had over 80,000 views last time I looked, is now nowhere to be seen on Xtranormal.com. I find it so depressing that it only has 18 views on YouTube.

And I am NOT going to give a link to the cheeky $%*&# who stole my Jaz and Keith 3 and made my two innocent boys speak terrible bad language. But he’s just a kid, and he acknowledged that the movie was someone else’s and he put “Jaz and Keith” in the description (which is how I found it on YouTube), so it is searchable. It has more views than the far superior original, but then good clean fun isn’t very fashionable now is it?

Incorrect Shaving Myth 0

Posted on October 23, 2009 by noncon
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shaving-myth

I heard that old overused myth again the other day about hair growing back thicker if you shave. A woman told her twelve year old daughter she should not shave her legs because the hairs will grow back as thick as her father’s beard.

It was the first time I had met this woman and she was in front of her whole family, so I didn’t correct her (I would have done a few years ago when I was a bigger nonconformist). But if a person, male or female, shaves any part of their body; legs, face, anywhere; the only thing that will happen is that the new hairs will grow back with a blunt end instead of a fine tapered end.

Shaving never causes hairs to grow back thicker for as long as you live. Here’s a few more incorrect myths including that one.

Here’s a shaving fact that isn’t a myth: A money saving tip (or should that be money shaving tip?) would be to ditch your overpriced shaving foam or shaving cream. Use hair conditioner instead – all it has to do is soften the hair and skin, and hair conditioner does that perfectly well, at a fraction of the price.

Melody and Sabrina 1 1

Posted on October 09, 2009 by noncon
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Sabrina meets Madonna’s daughter, Lourdes

3D images – Wrong Left and Right 0

Posted on September 30, 2009 by noncon
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It’s only 3D when it’s the RIGHT way round!

Over at THIS site, these two pics have been put side by side with the Right pic on the left and the Left pic on the right.

But people are still claiming they can see it in 3D!

How could I tell? After struggling to see it immediately, I suspected something was wrong. Then I noticed that the gap that appears orange between the stairs on the right and the stairs underneath is wider on the right. It should be wider on the left where your left eye is further away from it.

This staircase is actually the perfect subject for a stereo photo too as it has both near and far away things in the frame. I’m all for nonconformism, but I’m afraid with 3D it won’t work unless you conform – so 3D images need to be the right Left and Right!

This is how it should look. Just relax your eyes and line up the two images until, instead of seeing two images, you see three. The middle one will be in 3D:

001Left 001Right



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