Thursday, December 31, 2009


Out of the night that covers me,
Black as the pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul.

In the fell clutch of circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud.
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody, but unbowed.

Beyond this place of wrath and tears
Looms but the Horror of the shade,
And yet the menace of the years
Finds and shall find me unafraid.

It matters not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate:
I am the captain of my soul.

William Ernest Henley (1849–1903) written in 1875

Rather a bleak view of life but you've got to love that last couplet.

Friday, December 25, 2009

Best of the Cracker Jokes 2009

How do farmers count their cows?

On a cowculator.


Why did the astronomer get told off at school?

Because he was always staring into space.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

CinemaConnections #1

Me & Orson Welles (& me):

Louis Elman - Sound Casting (my first experience of the film industry, in Dean Street)
Dick Pope - DoP (my first job in the film industry, at Solus in Marshall St)
Jacqueline Hurt - Legals
Marc Samuelson - Producer

Actresses I fancy

I played this game late one night in a bar in Edinburgh or somewhere with Anthony Lilley but was struggling to come up with answers...

Madeleine Stowe (in 12 Monkeys and Last of the Mohicans)

Claire Danes (in Me & Orson Welles and Romeo & Juliet)

Audrey Tautou (in Amelie)

Halle Berry (in Bulworth)

Creative Accounting #103

12 Monkeys = KPax / Terminator

(even the poster has echoes of Terminator)

Friday, December 11, 2009

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Week begins - yesterday's Happiness Experiment entry

Being reappointed as Trustee of Culture24

Revisiting Banksy's Anywhere in Archway

Being in the edit suite again - at Uncle for Life Begins - including an amazing sequence of a Japanese woman giving birth in a waterpool

Friday, December 04, 2009

Zurich - yesterday's Happiness Experiment entry

Ulysses close-reading session with Fritz Senn at James Joyce Foundation

Doing 90 minutes unscripted for Schweizer Fernsehen with Anita Hugi and the culture dept

Bumping into Johnny & Sue as if destined, after thinking about Wulfi & Nat - they told me the story about Milly's parents and how a love affair against the tide saved us all

Monday, November 30, 2009

3 try hero - Today's Happiness Experiment entry

3 fabulous tries by Enfant Terrible #1 including a third of the field run

Catching up with Roger Deakins about his excellent A Serious Man

Looking through the 70s badge collection with N & D

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Monday, November 23, 2009


Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.

Arthur C Clarke

Friday, November 20, 2009

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Cube - yesterday's Happiness Experiment entry

Support from U in Marylebone High Street

Shooting London Inspirations vid

Watching a Swedish movie (Girl with the Dragon Tattoo)

Today's Happiness Experiment entry

An amazingly blue autumn sky above Pimlico

A momentary encounter with D in playground

A snatched coffee with Chloe Moss of Misfits

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Creative Accounting #102

Gerard Butler - Scotland + acting talent = Jason Isaacs - Liverpool

(top half of face similar)

Friday, November 13, 2009

CPH - yesterday's Happiness Experiment entry

Reconnecting with Thomas Gibson after a long while - thanks to helping Michael Birch with his Help Jess Breathe website

The book stacks in Copenhagen University library illuminated at night

A story about the Cyprus crisis of December 1963 from a Turkish Cypriot taxi driver - how he got to Nicosia in January 1964 to be reunited with his family on a British Hercules transporter plane

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Help Jess breathe


Jess has been waiting for 4 years for a double lung transplant. Mainly because only 25% of people in the UK are on the organ donor register.

Please check that you are on the register by clicking below:

adam gee

Feeling innovative - yesterday's Happiness Experiment entry

Kick off meeting in Airlock's homely offices opposite the former Forma hq

The afterglow of Landshare winning the RTS Innovation Award yesterday at BAFTA

Visiting Archbishop Tennison's school at the Oval with fellow Cutlers

MurdochWatch #22

Rupert Murdoch: "The editors in Britain for instance have turned very much against Gordon Brown, who is a friend of mine. I regret it."

What does Rupe's concept of friendship say about him?


"We can't solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them" - Einstein

Spotted on the way to Copenhagen - useful for the upcoming critical conference?

Tuesday, November 03, 2009


"When a woman is a really good driver she is just about perfect." Raymond Chandler, Playback.

"Common sense is the little man in a grey suit who never makes a mistake in addition. But it's always somebody else's money he's adding up." Raymond Chandler, Playback.

“Only a life lived for others is a life worth while.” Einstein

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Monday, October 26, 2009

Saturday's Happiness Experiment entry

The heat of the sunshine on landing in Naples

An incredible momentary sunset

Seeing an infinity pool at close quarters

Positano - yesterday's Happiness Experiment entry

Jason's story, told at the kitchen table after supper, about his nightmare holiday with the boys in Spain, including the Mini heater burning his face

Bean soup on the beachfront at Positano

Playing table tennis with N, Finn and Jason

Wild life

Jake: Can you take out the splinter with the weasals?

Noah: I've got a horn in my foot!

Monday, October 19, 2009

Today's Happiness Experiment entry

Listening to Jason Reitman talking about his film-making after screening of In the Air - George Clooney's old school star quality

Making a peanutbutter sarnie for Honeyman to beef him up for his rugby match against Fortismere this evening - FCHS won

Approaching home

Friday, October 16, 2009

Today's Happiness Experiment entry

Reading Lynne Barber's An Education by Lac Leman at sundown

Getting back to 93.0

Roesti and egg

Waumth - Today's Happiness Experiment entry

Approaching the end of Waugh's Men at Arms (with the prospect of picking up Officers. & Gentlemen from Black Gull on the weekend)

A hot bath

A sunny interlude in the Embankment gardens with laptop and ed spec

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Telly - yesterday's Happiness Experiment entry

Chairing RTS session on multiplatform TV with Dr Dawn and the Embarrassing Bodies team on 14th floor of LWT

Coining the concept of Quotables

Taking Orla to Channel 4

Sunday, October 11, 2009

My concerns about the Tories

Ex-Bank aide attacks ‘bizarre’ Tory plan

This is the most wildly dangerous thing I have seen in 100 years of economic policy in Britain

Joe Murphy, Political Editor - London Evening Standard

David Cameron's economic plans have been branded “wildly dangerous” by a former senior Bank of England official.

Economist David Blanchflower, former member of the Bank's monetary policy committee, said the Tories would risk plunging Britain into a deeper recession by turning off the Government's measures to stimulate recovery.

In his conference speech at Manchester, Mr Cameron said quantitative easing should end “soon”. Mr Blanchflower called the stance “bizarre” and told the Daily Mail that calling off stimulus too early would snuff out recovery. “This is the most wildly dangerous thing I have seen in 100 years of economic policy in Britain he added. He said the Tories showed “no understanding of economics”: “It could drive the economy into depression.”

The Bank has held interest rates at their 0.5 per cent record low. So far it has created £146 billion of fresh cash, buying up debt in the form of government and corporate bonds. Mr Cameron said: “If we spend more than we earn, we have to get the money from somewhere. Right now, the Government is simply printing it. Sometime soon that will have to stop, because printing money leads to inflation.”

Chancellor Alistair Darling said: “If we stop supporting the economy now it would crash.”

On Pantheism

That which is impenetrable to us really exists. Behind the secrets of nature remains something subtle, intangible, and inexplicable. Veneration for this force beyond anything that we can comprehend is my religion.


on Doing the Right Thing

Never, never be afraid to do what's right, especially if the well-being of a person or animal is at stake. Society's punishments are small compared to the wounds we inflict on our soul when we look the other way.

Martin Luther King

on Christianity

Ah! what a divine religion might be found out if charity were really made the principle of it instead of faith.


Plenty of kind, decent, caring people have no religious beliefs, and they act out of the goodness of their hearts. Conversely, plenty of people who profess to be religious, even those who worship regularly, show no particular interest in the world beyond themselves.

John Danforth - priest, ambassador, senator (b. 1936)

Quotation - Simple Pleasures & the Present

One should count each day a separate life.

Lucius Annaeus Seneca, philosopher (3 BC - 65 AD)

Quotation - Simple Pleasures

Let your capital be simplicity and contentment.

Henry David Thoreau, naturalist and author (1817-1862)

Word of the Day

callipygian = having well-shaped buttocks

From Greek calli (beautiful) + pyge (buttocks)

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

Saturday, October 03, 2009

Prick Up - Today's Happiness Experiment entry

Sorting out bookshelves - to make space for N

Seeing Prick Up Your Ears at the Comedy with Roddy - including Matt Lucas & Chris New getting the giggles

Watching the clouds floating in front of the full moon

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Fresh ones - yesterday's Happiness Experiment entry

Seeing Colin Jones at the opening of his exhibition of early Who photos (at Proud Central) - young Keith Moon was particularly captivating

Sharing my know-how with Jamie Oliver's Fresh One over in Nile Street

Chatting about movies over lunch with FilmFour's Paul Grindey

Hoxton - Today's Happiness Experiment entry

Speaking at Hoxton Hall, an old East End music hall with original fixtures and fittings

Bumping into my friend Roger on his way home from hanging out with his fellow sci-fi authors

A nice afternoon ride in a posh Bima

Friday, September 18, 2009

My 1st submission to Guardian Notes & Queries

Are there any examples of books being improved in translation?

The Asterix books - for example, the dog is Idéfix in French (meaning obsession) but Dogmatix in English, adding the canine pun to the idea of single-mindedness; the druid is Panoramix in the original (meaning panoramic) but Getafix in the translation, providing a more relevant name through druggy wordplay.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Sunday, September 06, 2009

Today's Happiness Experiment entry

Reading Evelyn Waugh's Men at Arms in the late summer sun

Picking up a 2nd hand copy of the Beatles' Blue Album on a whim in our high street

Jogging round London's biggest cemetery with youngest Enfant Terrible

Friday, September 04, 2009

Today's Happiness Experiment entry

Reading Rupert Brooke in the wee small hours (my copy from Clapham Old Town)

An easy run around St Pancras Cemetery in the autumn sun

Seeing the first designs for CQD

Belfast - yesterday's Happiness Experiment entry

Finishing 'The Great Lover' by Jill Dawson about Rupert Brooke

A positive meeting with the Culture & Arts Minister for Northern Ireland

The pool of water outside the Radisson Hotel where Ed Baker and I dined on a sunny evening

Thursday, September 03, 2009

Some Kind of Wonderful - yesterday's Happiness Experiment entry

More John Hughes - Some Kind of Wonderful

The 1940s pencil sketches on the wall of the stairs down to the gents at The Ivy (during Guardian Student Media Awards judging)

A distinctly autumnal meeting about Landshare out on the back terrace of Channel 4

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Edinburgh - yesterday's Happiness Experiment entry

Listening to David Simon talking about writing, The Wire and associated stuff

A 7 Year Itch gust of wind near the Glasshouse

Rich Hall late night at the Assembly Rooms

Today's Happiness Experiment entry

Early morning & dusk view of Greek Hill (Calton Hill), Edinburgh

The Winding Hill (Cockburn Street) (where I confirmed the meaning of "lomography")

Lunch in the sun in the Grassmarket

Starspots #244

Edinburgh 28/29.8.09

Jimmy Carr

Adrian Chiles

Charlie Brooker

Dominic West
Peter Andre

Monday, August 24, 2009

Latest TLAs 4

EPD = Extreme Plunging Dress (as beautifully demonstrated by Rachel McAdams at the New York premiere of The Time Traveller's Wife 8.09)

IWA = Irish Windsurfing Association

Friday, August 21, 2009

Latest TLAs 3

ARP = Air Raid Precautions (WW2)

LTE = Long-term evolution (4th generation mobile broadband)

MPC = Monetary Policy Committee (Bank of England)

ASA = Advertising Standards Authority ('Keeping advertising standards high')

RSA = Royal Society for the Encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce

LPS = Land & Property Service (Northern Irish rate collector)

CRT = Cathode Ray Tube {courtesy of The Word podcast}

Bolt from the black - yesterday's Happiness Experiment entry

Watching Ussain Bolt en famille smash the 200m world record

Watching a rain storm sweep down Carlingford Lough

Seeing the seasonal high tide at the near pier

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Positive Psychology

Martin Seligman - University of Pennsylvania

The Pleasant Life
The Good Life - "knowing your highest strengths and values, and using them all the time"
The Meaningful Life - "using your strengths in the service of something larger than yourself"

Good relationships

Sonja Lyubomirsky - University of California
1 express gratitude *
2 cultivate optimism
3 avoid obsessing or paying too much attention to what others are doing
4 practise acts of kindness *
5 make time for friends *
6 develop coping stategies
7 learn to forgive
8 immerse yourself in activities (including new ones)
9 savour life's joys *
10 work towards meaningful goals
11 practise spirituality
12 exercise *

Inscription on a sundial

Inscription on a sundial at Madresfield, the model for Brideshead:

That day is wasted on which we have not laughed.

Latest TLAs 2

GEC = Great English Classic (Nancy Mitford to Evelyn Waugh on Brideshead Revisited)

IEC = Independent Electoral Comission (Afghanistan Aug 09)

RHR = Resting Heart Rate (Ed Wardle from Alone in the Wild)

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Creative Accounting #414

State of Play / TV = Defence of the Realm / Film + All the President's Men

David Morrisey / England = Liam Neeson / Ireland

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Today's Happiness Experiment entry

Reaching the summit of Slieve Foy with N (and Eoin and Larry)

Coming across an abandoned village on the slopes below Queen Meabh's Gap in Cooley, Co. Louth

A coffee at Dan's Stonewall Cafe after 5 hours of walking

Monday, August 10, 2009

Recent Happiness Experiment entries

Fri 7/8:
Jog down past a heron to the stone circle in Kenmare

Walk with U to the stone circle at Gleninchaquin - then the waterfall and river

Visit to the cute Kenmare bookshop where I picked up a volume on Ulysses and one about the Easter Rising

Thurs 6/8:
Lunch in the village of Sneem - newspaper and toasties

Visiting the Charlie Chaplin statue at Waterville with Dylan Charlie Wilf

Swimming with N + D at Derrynane beach

Wed 5/8:
Swim in Loch Hyne, unique sea-water lake, with D

Walk through oak forest at Glengarriff in evening sunlight

Baking myself on a stone wall outside Phil McCarthy's

Dingle - Saturday's Happiness Experiment entry

A boat trip out of Dingle guided by Bernie and visited by Fungie (the first dolphin I've seen in the wild)

Playing It on the dunes of Inch beach with N & D (location for Ryan's Daughter)

Visiting Tom Crean's pub - the South Pole Inn in Annascaul - and then sharing the experience with Oliver Dudley whilst he's rowing around Landsend into the Irish Sea (shades of Crean's heroic small boat voyage with Shackleton to South Georgia)

Rainy day doings - yesterday's Happiness Experiment entry

Repatriating a book to North-West London from the second-hand bookshop in Kenmare (belonging to the late Arnie Kertz, teacher at Kilburn College).

The walk to and from the three Musician sculptures (Snowman stylee) overlooking the Kenmare River

Watching Sidney Pollack's The Interpreter en famille after Sunday night supper

Latest TLAs

ZSL = Zoological Society of London (Whipsnade sign on M1)

PUD = Personnel Unable to Deploy (MoD jargon relating to unfit and obese soldiers, more prevalent in the army since the maximum BMI of recruits was raised to 32)

LMT = London Media Tech (mediocre colllege in The London Pigeon Wars)

CCC = Cork County Council + Clapham Community Centre (in The London Pigeon Wars)

KCC = Kerry County Council

HSE = Health Services Executive (Ireland)

RIC = Royal Irish Constabulary (1916)

NDP = National Development Plan (Eire)

Croker = Croke Park
Compo = compensation (Irish)

Tuesday, August 04, 2009

Sherkin - Today's Happiness Experiment entry

The beach on Sherkin Island - Silver Strand

Zephyring across the Sound at Baltimore to Sherkin

Walking home from the beach down the lanes lined with Dusky Maiden crocosmias and fuchias catching the evening light

Hothouse Flowers - Monday's Happiness Experiment entry

Seeing the Hothouse Flowers in the community hall of Baltimore - watching Liam Ó Maonlaí hard at play close-up

Having a spin in an open-topped British racing green Morgan roadster

Breakfast under the sails at Glebe House, Baltimore

Monday, August 03, 2009

Creative Accounting #411

Liam Ó Maonlaí / Hothouse Flowers = Mike Scott + Paul Brady + Jim Morrison (incl. native american spirit) + Crosby Stills Nash & Young + sprinkle of Van

Sunday's Happiness Experiment entry

Meeting Ben Baird of Aquarium Studios by chance on the Dublin ferry

Exploring Rhos-on-sea beach on a sunny Sunday morning - with U & D

Having a swift half on our arrival in West Cork (Roscarberry) with N (his was a red lemonade)

Saturday's Happiness Experiment entry

View of the sea at Colwyn Bay - first sight of the sea for a while

Listening back to my Girls compilation for the first time (songs about girls)

Sleeping in a family room (in Rhos on sea)

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Halina - yesterday's Happiness Experiment entry

Being at Halina Sand's memorial service at art nouveau Golder's Green crematorium with all the usual suspects from Katherine's life

Supper in an alleyway off Newburgh St with Oliver Dudley, chewing the rag

A short nostalgic walk through Edgware

Today's Happiness Experiment entry

Getting my 1st iPhone from a cute French chick

Watching latest rushes from Ed Wardle alone in the wild

Kicking off 3 Arts Council projects

Monday, July 27, 2009

Today's Happiness Experiment entry

A contemplative Campari and soda in a cool evening breeze at the upstairs window of Thomas Cubitt

Getting Oliver Dudley on board for Alone in the Wild - he's about to row round Britain

Working on Arts projects for ACE

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Today's Happiness Experiment entry

Becoming a Liveryman of the City of London (complete with natty engraved medal) (and port) (and claret) (and armagnac)

Being chaired by Minister Kevin Brennan in an unusually efficient and to time meeting

My mum's email just after midnight about Pop aka Ian Harris (who died on this day - like Aaron)

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Malapropism of the week

UFM: "That Livery thing you're doing is completely anarchic" (archaic)

on me becoming a Liveryman of the City tomorrow

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Bat for Lashes - Glass

By night my bed I sought him whom my soul
loveth; I sought him, but I found him not.
I will rise now, and go about the city in the streets, and
in the broad ways I will seek him whom my soul loveth:
I sought him, but I found him not.
The watchmen that go about the city found me: to
whom I said, Saw ye him whom my soul loveth?
It was but a little that I passed from them, but I found
him whom my soul loveth; I held him, and would not
let him go, until I had brought him into my mother's
house, and into the chamber of her that conceived me.

[Song of Solomon, Chapter 3]

Monday, July 13, 2009

Today's Happiness Experiment entry

Reading loads of Around the World in 80 Days on the rug (flying carpet) in the back garden

Watching Thunderbolt & Lightfoot with U - 1974 cinematic golden age

Celebrating discovery of missing accounts ;-)

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Yesterday's Happiness Experiment entry

Tennis with N at Waterlow Park

Dinner with Fobes, JRT and Tony M at House of Fobes

Making a playlist about Girls

Wednesday, July 08, 2009

Starspots #46

Bill Nighy (Tate Britain) + Mark Titchner + Grayson Perry + Alan Yentob

Yesterday's Happiness Experiment entry

Jog in St Pancras cemetery - back on track

Dinner at Kew accompanied by Jools Holland

CCTV project meeting with Roger & Eve

Today's Happiness Experiment entry

Chat with Jason Isaacs in a green pagoda

Pulling off Us Now screening in Houses of Parliament with David Puttnam, Helena Kennedy et al

Landing an iPhone

Friday, June 19, 2009

Patti Smith at Ornette Coleman's Meltdown

at Festival Hall (with Seth B)

Piss Factory
Wild Leaves Are Falling
Nine (new song)
In my Blakian years
Pissing in the River **
Ghost Dance ***

Adrian Utley and Geoff Barrow of Portishead
Flea (Red Hot Chili Peppers)
Jesse Smith (daughter)
group of North African musicians in emerald garb
The Silver Mt. Zion Memorial Orchestra
Ornette Coleman

Previous Patti Smith gigs I've been to:
* Union Chapel (with Sue M) ***
* Brixton Academy (with Una)
* Festival Hall [Kevin Shields - The Coral Sea] (with Una)
* Roundhouse [Twelve] (with Roddy G) ***
* St Luke's [Phillip Glass] (with Seth B) - when I met Patti and talked to her about Rimbaud

Monday, June 08, 2009

Sunday, June 07, 2009

Yesterday's Happiness Experiment entry

A good haircut (by Chris)

Taking N to see Picassos (at the National Gallery)

Watching 24 Hour Party People with N & D

Saturday, June 06, 2009

Top 4: Cities

(Not including London)


1 LA

2 Jerusalem

3 Barcelona

4 Amsterdam


1 New York

2 San Francisco

3 Amsterdam

4 Paris

Top 4: Countries to visit

2 Spain
3 Israel
4 Brazil

1 Ireland
2 Israel
3 Spain
4 Italy

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Flower power - yesterday's Happiness Experiment entry

My first visit to the Chelsea Flower Show with U in bright evening sun

Starting my 1970s Folio edition of Brave New World

Working on Arts ideas for networked public service media

Big Art - Today's Happiness Experiment entry

Talking to Grayson Perry about creativity, names and Rachel Whiteread

A meeting at Cutler's Hall - and walking back in the late afternoon sunshine from the City via the Aldwych (with outdoor supper in Somerset House courtyard)

Sitting alongside Jan Younghusband and John Newbigin at a knock-about debate about Public Art at the RSA chaired by Jon Snow

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Friday, May 15, 2009

Top 4: Comic book goodies


1 Wolverine

2 Batman

3 Silver Surfer

4 Nightcrawler


1 Silver Surfer

2 Arak

3 Iron Ghost

4 Matador

Top 4: Fizzy Drinks


1 Whole Earth Elderflower

2 San Pellegrino Aranciata

3 Sprite

4 7Up Cherry


1 Badoit

2 San Pellegrino Amara

3 Fentiman's Dandelion & Burdock

4 McDaid's Football Special (from Ramelton, Donegal)

Bubbling under: Whole Earth Cranberry, Fentiman's Ginger Beer, Coke

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Today's Happiness Experiment entry

Embarrassing Bodies passing 20 million pageviews

Surgery Live entering the public domain - Twitter site launched

The short, wonderous life of Oscar Wao book group sesh at JRT's

Friday, May 08, 2009

Athens arrival - yesterday's Happiness Experiment entry

Reading the paper over breakfast

A swim on the roof top pool overlooking Athens

A first view of the Acropolis

Athens - Today's Happiness Experiment entry

Delivering a session people said was inspiring, speaking on Networked Media and Documentary for the EDN (European Documentary Network) in Athens

A walk up the Acropolis
with three EDN colleagues for my first view of the Parthenon from up close, its yellow stone off-set by an azure sky

Dinner al fresco in a courtyard with Laurien (Dutch from IDFA), Meike (Dutch from IDFA) and Costas - beautiful light Greek food (tsatziki, red lentil paste, spiced meatballs, salad)

Bonus: headline and article in JC

Thursday, May 07, 2009

My letter to The Independent today

I loved Matthew Norman's line in his amusing piece on Jacqui Smith and the US shock jock Michael Savage on p.31 of today's edition (7 May 09): "Michael Savage is a new name to me, as perhaps it is to you." I loved it for its irony - or perhaps revelation, having just moments earlier read the by-line of your Political Correspondent Michael Savage on p.3. I'd like to think the two of them have never been seen in the same room at the same time.

Really care

Actor Michael Sheen on Francis Coppola & Apocalypse Now:
"It's a good example because the main thing is to really care about what you are doing, to put your heart and soul into it. If you do that, then people tend to care about what you're doing."

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

Today's Happiness Experiment entry

The sparrow that nicked a chip from my lunch - a lovely al fresco lunch in a square in Geneva on my way home from the bizarreness of Eurovisionland

The views of Switzerland from the train window from Lucerne to Geneva, especially the lake bits

Getting a nomination for Sexperience in the Broadcast Digital Awards

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Weekend's Happiness Experiment entry


Reading in the sunshine by the fountain

A Phoenix outing with U to see (In the Loop)

Impromptu barbecue with neighbours Kate & James


Family cinema outing to Odeon (Muswell Hill) for Wolverine

Iphie's exercises by the balcony doors

Reading bedtime story with D

Luzern - Today's Happiness Experiment entry

Midnight bells of Lucerne in the lakeside chestnut avenue

Reading Oscar Wao in the same avenue late afternoon

Speaking about Landshare, Big Art Mob and Embarrassing Bodies to the Eurovision CrossMedia summit - and listening to Chris Vallance of Radio 4 about his cross-platform experiments

Lucerne - yesterday's Happiness Experiment entry

Reading the relaunch issue of Wired (uk) on the plane to Geneva - and spotting a cameo appearance of my name in a photo of Oli Barrett

The afternoon train journey from Geneva to Lucerne via Berne accompanied by David Sylvian - haven't set eyes on Berne since teenage traveling

Sunset over Lake Lucerne

Friday, April 24, 2009

Dublin - yesterday's Happiness Experiment entry

My very own chauffeur in posh car on arrival in Dublin

Posh dinner at Bono's favourite restaurant in Temple Bar with the EU Screen Leaders folk (to whom I presented today on the subject of Networked Media and business directions)

Recognition of 2008 and Q1 09 factual cross-platform successes in weekly Programme Review gathering of C4 commissioners

Memories - Today's Happiness Experiment entry

Looking at my niece's sketch book, textiles and artwork

Jogging around St Stephen's Green, Dublin

Taking my photos for the Disposable Memories project including a fiddle shop with Meabh. Sent my London and Dublin pics off with a young bloke to Barcelona

Extra: got home from Dublin and left waiting for me on my pillow was my older son's first ever mixtape called P1AN BE

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Starspots #228

23/4/09 Peter Snow - St James's tube

21/4/09 Jaume Plensa - artist - at Dream, St Helens
15/4/09 Darkus Howe - Victoria Station

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Dream - yesterday's Happiness Experiment entry

Seeing Dream for the first time (delicate, subtle beauty) in St Helens and talking to the artist Jaume Plensa

Putting live the Britain's Forgotten Children site with the finished visuals from 4Creative

Volunteering for Antony Gormley's One & Other and letting him know about the Big Art Mob One & Other group.

An arty day to be sure

An extra one, just for today: D being chosen by his teachers as School Captain and greeting me on the walk home to tell me

Monday's Happiness Experiment entry

Seeing 'Good' with Ma - good performance from Jason Isaacs

Lunch chat with Oona King

Bumping into smiley Anne-Marie Hubert of JustGiving

Sunday, April 19, 2009

(Van the) Man on Fire

Van Morrison and big band (of 15)

At Albert Hall

(County Down)


And it Stoned me

Have I Told You Lately

Caravan **

All in the Game *

The Healing has begun *

The Common One *

[Astral Weeks]

Listen to the Light


Saturday, April 18, 2009

Wednesday's Happiness Experiment entry

Chatting to Jason Isaacs about Good, Leslie Hardman, the holocaust and all manner of movie and history stuff of varying degrees of heaviosity at the BAFTA nominees party in Knightsbridge

Successful relaunch of Embarrassing Bodies website for series 3 - over 17 pageviews per session on average - nominated for a TV BAFTA

Playing with D around Brighton - Shakeaway milkshakes (farleys rusks and battenburg respectively), 20 Questions and the Electric. Railway

Brave New World - Thursday's Happiness Experiment entry

Sunset convo with D about talents in Brighton Marina

Walk in Nymans Woods decorated with bluebells

Run around eastern breakwater of the Marina listening to In Our Time on Brave New World

Father & Youngest Son - yesterday's Happiness Experiment entry

Drawing Sue Storm with D

Watching doc about the making of The Joshua Tree with D

Reading Traces by Malcolm Somebody with D

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Friday's Happiness Experiment entry

Spotting a couple of (Easter) rabbits and some partridges on a moist walk around Little Berkhamsted, Herts.

Contemplating a beautiful country church at 3pm on Good Friday

Watching The Pink Panther (with Steve Martin) en famille

Bedrock - yesterday's Happiness Experiment entry

Reading 1602 on my bed - and snoozing (no reflection on 1602)

Watching The Thin Man with William Powell and Myrna Loy on my little dvd player in bed (spotting a trend?)

Mooching with the Enfants Terribles in Crouch End and environs - including picking up a set of 3 pairs of dumbbells (one for the little one, one for the big one, one for me)

Wednesday, April 08, 2009

Reflection on Christianity

Ah! what a divine religion might be found out if charity were really made the principle of it instead of faith.


Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Christmas Cracker

Cracker joke just found in watch-pocket of my jeans:

What do you get if you cross a centipede with a parrot?

A walkie-talkie

Friday, April 03, 2009

Jarring experience - yesterday's Happiness Experiment entry

talking to N about David Lean - whilst watching a rather mediocre BBC1 documentary about him fronted by an unconvincing Jonathan Ross

the sense of big things (G20, Obama visit) happening in London

hitting 92.9

Sadly Maurice Jarre, the composer associated with David Lean and composer of the Oscar-winning soundtrack for Lawrence of Arabia, died last week (29.iii.09). Watched Lawrence of Arabia the day after first posting this with D & N - the music interacts with the desert in a marvelous way. I also love the quote from Noel Coward on Galway-born Peter O'Toole in LoA: "If he'd been any prettier, they'd have had to call it Florence of Arabia."

Today's Happiness Experiment entry

Coming up with Arts ideas with like-minded colleagues - around Lamb's Conduit Street

Working from home - listening to John Martyn

Accompanying D

Thursday, April 02, 2009

Money slang

funt = a pound
byce OR bottle = two pounds
carpet = three pounds
rofe = four pounds (backwards 4)
finnif OR jacks = five pounds
nevis = seven pounds (backwards 7)
cock = ten pounds (cock and hen)
score = twenty pounds
pony = twenty-five pounds
ton = one hundred pounds
monkey = five hundred pounds
G = a thousand pounds
sovs = pounds

Learnt on the job with Jackie Joseph in the Dutch auction (Stoke Newington, Putney, etc.) and Maurice Podro in The Lane (Wentworth Street) back in the days when Hoxton was a khazi

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

On Education

The mind is not a vessel to be filled, but a fire to be kindled.


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Polypill - cocktail of 5 non-patent drugs to counter heart disease (30/31.3.09 reporting of article in medical journal)

Virtual reality financial products - the labyrinthine 'products' that brought about the Credit Crunch (31.3.09 Rowan Williams on BBC Radio 4)

Thought for the day - the nature of creative work

They are happy men whose natures sort with their vocations.

Francis Bacon (essayist, philosopher, and statesman 1561-1626)

More compelling than Mark Twain's rather glib:
"The secret of success is to make your vocation your vacation."

Monday, March 30, 2009

Sinead O'Connor at the Pigalle Club, London, 30.iii.09

Theology acoustic

Days without end

If I had a Vineyard

Dust and ashes

I have the universe inside of me

The Emperor's New Clothes *

Black boys on mopeds *

Bunch of junky lies **

Nothing Compares 2U

Stretched across your grave

Thank you for hearing me

Paddy's Lament

The glory of Jah (Sinead's favourite of her songs)

Rivers of Babylon

Keyboards (Kieran K), Guitar (Steve P)

Roddy, Adie Dunbar

Friday, March 27, 2009

Old school joke

[To be spoken aloud with Irish accents]

An Irishman pitches up at a building site in Dublin looking for work. The foreman says "First you'll have to prove you know your stuff. Do you know what the difference is between a joist and a girder?"
"Sure, that's easy," says the builder, "Joyce wrote Finnegan's Wake and Goethe wrote Faust."

Monday, March 23, 2009

Starspots #45

Tony Robinson, Christopher Biggins (Channel 4 11.3.09)
David Steele (Whitehall 18.3.09)

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Ship shape & Bristol fashion - yesterday's Happiness Experiment entry

Glimpses of Bath including at sunset

Chairing an enjoyable speaking gig at Crossing the Void (Watershed, Bristol) - a multiplatform case study of Sexperience - with Andy Bell of Mint Digital, Iain Dodgeon of STV and Kirsty Stephenson of Cheetah TV

Watching Ireland-Scotland match with my technicallly Irish son on Paddy's Day

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Today's Happiness Experiment entry

Watching Ireland play rugby, especially Rob Kearney

Playing tennis with N at Waterlow Park - first game of the year - beautiful crisp sunshine

Reading 1602 which I got from Alfie Dennen yesterday

yesterday's Happiness Experiment entry

drinking Badoit from a wine glass

having a run before work

Digital Britain discussion at NESTA with Charlie Leadbeater, Mark Earls, JP Rangaswami et al