Yeah. I been away. Sorry. I was gonna do a post on news & media when travelling. Fascinating stuff. Like the lazy 15 minute skit I saw on CNN in Hong Kong airport which focussed on US Marines returning from Iraq and Afghanistan to be reunited with their pet dogs. God that was lazy. CNN just tapped into a YouTube channel and showed clip after clip of dogs and soldiers hugging. Like ‘you’ve been framed’ footage on a loop without the slapstick ending.
Or like Japanese TV. which.is.mental. Mornings seemed to consist of advertorials for face cream with ‘before’ and ‘after’ shots. But in this case before was IDENTICAL to after. In the evenings there was a game show where Japanese men wearing nothing but shorts stood around laughing like beavis and butthead while an older man randomly had one of them held down to administer painful electric shocks or agony inducing neck injections.
The only English channels I came across were news based. Oh and fashion tv which featured endless footage of thin people walking up and down badly lit catwalks wearing clothes. I couldn’t decide who this was targeting? In the broadest of stereotypes was it the long-suffering wife forced to kill hotel time while her husband was in meetings or was it the leery businessman wanting to look at images of women without having to buy in-hotel pornography.
Gah. Where’s the remote. I’ll even take BBC world or Sky News over all this.
Of course while I was away lots happened. Loads. Tripoli fell. I was in a hotel room waking up when reporters in green square were announcing the end of Gadaffi’s reign. In the flush of excitement they also revealed the extent to which our government has been lying to us. Unless they were telling fresh porkies (also likely to be true). For example I’d been under the impression that the US had stopped flying sorties months ago after Obama had announced the UK and France would be mounting the air campaign.
Not so according to Fox news anchors who proudly trumpeted that the US were actually the main reason for the rebels success by supplying drone attacks, sorties and air intelligence (see what I mean about lying I don’t know what the truth is now. Maybe Libya is a metaphysical state of mind where all our dreams come true). Another memory I have is of a ham-faced Hague explicitly stating that our involvement in Libya is limited to use of air power to protect civilians! Anyone else remember that fucker? Was I dreaming? I often confuse my dreams with the news now. So when Sky news beamed directly into my hotel room from Tripoli to say the UK had been flying a range of bombing missions on enemy targets and had deployed special forces to train and assist rebels I was like ‘eh’? Somewhere between shock and the complete laconic inability to be surprised by any lies our government and press tell.
So I’ve come back to a different world. Or so I thought. Actually I didn’t even think it. It’s the same old shit isn’t it?
Yeah. It’s the same. So here we go. What was the big issue with Qadaffi when I got back? Well the press were drooling like a weeping sore over his infatuation with Condoleezza Rice. As if that were a real name. Yeah. Kadaffi had apparently kept pics of her in a laminated book. FILTHY. How ironic that a man who tried to perpetuate his own cult of celebrity had fallen for another celenrity. His puffy, spongy face delighting in his love of one of America’s most high profile neo-cons (laminated pictures? Ugh!)
Yeah. The media loved reporting that as though it was weird that didn’t they. But why? I mean seriously? This is their aim in life. Fuck war. War is not regular. Celebrity is eternal.
Last Friday ES Magazine ran a fashion shoot. OK. So. Fair play. Fashion is fashion. People need clothes n’ting. What was the subject here though?
Well ES thought it would be *fun* to do a fashion shoot on the clothes that celebrity mothers wear when taking their kids to school.
No. I’m not joking. That intimate time where even the most publicity hungry slebs insist on having their kids faces pixellated out. THAT is exactly what the Standard was aiming for. LOOK as Elle McPherson or Gwyneth Paltrow walk their (pixellated) kids to school! SEE how you can walk your (unpixellated) kids to school wearing the same gear.
That made me almost physically sick. At least QKGadaffi kept his celebrity stalking on wipe-clean laminate!
Gets worse though. Sunday Times *style* section ran Suri Cruise as their top *mover*. Apparently she throws her look together like a young Helena Bonham Carter. SHE’S FUCKING FIVE YEARS OLD. She wears clothes. That’s it. GQKadaffi is looking less like a loon now. Compared to our mainstream press. Fuck it. I’ll take some Japanese comedy torture over this shit.
Dreamily I awake.
I turn the telly on (is this a dream? Am I awake?)
People talking onscreen (lots of red. BBC news channel? Hell?)
There’s a man. He draws pictures in his sleep.
They sell. For thousands of pounds (noises. I’m awake? I’m dreaming? I’m dead?)
His pictures are sketchy. Here’s one of the star-spangled banner that looks like a child scribbled it. Here’s one of two sets of eyes (I’m dreaming. I am DREAMING!)
News presenter says something. I make it out….. “So. Do you know the people you draw in your sleep? Because that pair of eyes looks hauntingly like Her Royal Highness, Diana, the Princess of Wales” (I’m not dreaming. I’m awake. I wish I was dead.)