commonpeople1: (Avatar)
It's been a week since I arrived in London.  I've used these past days to say goodbye to this city and friends that I love so much. I fly back to Brasil on Friday... I have no clue when I'll be back in the UK.

My good friend [ profile] live_life_like  started this journal in Brasil in May 2001 as a way of keeping in touch with myself and another friend we had in common. Thus the name. In September that year, a week after 9/11, I left Brasil and moved to London with my boyfriend to start a new life.

This journal has been a great place to inhabit during my 12 years in London.  I survived many dull temp jobs thanks to it, and met tons of people who went on to become close friends. I'd like to one day sit down and read through it - there have been some dramatic posts and some epic flamewars!

This journal will come to an end when I fly to Brasil on Friday. It brings to an end my 12 years in London.

Here's to whatever comes next!
commonpeople1: (Avatar)
If you have been replying to my comments on your journals well, guess what: LJ hasn't been sending me those replies!  I'm not ignoring you!

I still get comments on my own journal - it's just the ones I do elsewhere that don't trigger email notifications. Anybody else having the same problem? Is it a settings thing that I need to update?
commonpeople1: (Avatar)
I've been thinking today if blogging and livejournaling is dead. Dead in the sense that most people who used them before have gone on to acquire many more social networks, and because of the increase in their personal admin (checking Facebook, checking Twitter, checking Instagram, etc) they no longer can tolerate long pieces of writing.

Twitter, to me, seems of the time. Tiny digestible nuggets that can lead you to longer articles if you so desire, but there's no pressure to read - you can easily just move/scroll on.  Before, with blogs and livejournals, there was the online social pressure to at least skim read.  Make some noise that you were paying attention. Now, they lie unread, uncommented, unnoticed. Or saved for "later" reading.

The age of people keeping blogs to document their lives as policemen / ambulance drivers / sex workers is also dead. Again, I think personal admin has got in the way and that type of cultural product is resigned to the noughties much like a lot of reality shows.

For myself, I sat in an old cemetery for lunch today and read some Walt Whitman.  I now know that Livejournal will never be the same, but I'm Ok with continuing to write here, for myself and for the few that still read this.  I've also started writing letters to friends who refuse to use social networks, and on Monday mornings I find a cafe before work and do a bit of fiction writing.
commonpeople1: (Default)
Is it just me or traffic has picked up on Livejournal? Loads of M.I.A. people are posting again. Was away for a few days and came back to epic posts.

I hate Facebook by the way. Shitty design, zero content - no pleasure. If I didn't have so much family, long-lost friends and my mom's guesthouse page there, I'd delete my account.

I like reading long posts, I like in depth coverage of your lives.

Up the Tree

Jan. 8th, 2012 12:24 pm
commonpeople1: (Default)
Tree by MorningDropsofDew
Tree, a photo by MorningDropsofDew on Flickr.
Goths up trees!

Last week, in a beautiful synchronicitous moment, I discovered UbuWeb through a blog I follow on Tumblr that mentioned Andy Warhol's complete diaries were available for free to download just as [ profile] wink_martindale came rushing into the room with the excited announcement that tons of art films are available there for free (Brian Eno, Bruce LaBruce, Jacques Lacan, Mapplethorpe, and many many more.) Such a great resource, much like

Where will we ever find the time to watch, read and see all the great things that have been created (and still exist)? Oh - I know - stop watching and reading so much crap! (My New Year's resolution.)

Last night, I went out in search of a lesbian bar with B, a friend who is single, gay and doesn't know many girls in London. This city is tough for lesbian establishments: for every 50 crowded gay bars filled with sweaty men there's 1 pub in the middle of nowhere with four lesbians playing pool and a young couple nooking in the corner. Where do London lesbians go on weekends? Who do they need to know? I refuse to believe there are more gay boys than girls in this city.

Edit: Just discovered another great site through The Observer: Edge.
commonpeople1: (Default)

Do you follow any web series?  Are there any you'd like to recommend? I'm looking forward to [ profile] oatmeal_texas' upcoming "Boyfriend Material", which he's just announced.  He helpfully linked to three other gay web series in his blog, which are all worth checking out.

Jack In A Box:

Two Jasperjohns:

It Gets Betterish:

Who needs television, eh?
commonpeople1: (Default)
The ultimate Yellow Book.  Great for keeping in touch with people who are crap at keeping in touch, managing events, prying in the lives of those you haven't seen in decades, and moaning about the latest security fiasco that is on the brink of pushing you to delete your account. I have a group set up exclusively for my family and I belong to another one dedicated to the tower block I grew up in Brasil in the 80s. Facebook reminds me all the time of how old I am.

is for chatter, for jokes, for self-promotion, for peeking in the lives of celebrities, for following natural disasters and revolutions, for wasting time.  I confess that I'm one of those people who dissed it (here on LJ) and promised to never have an account, but that's because I didn't "get it".  It's an amazing tool in my line of work (promoting the arts) and I've actually made a few friends through it (though I haven't met them in real life yet.)  I use my account to practice my (bad) French because I figured 140 characters is doable.  Surprisingly, some of my french followers don't seem to mind!

The place to be for photographers or those who love photography. It is possible to use it as a social network though interaction is very limited. I find it useful for my work (again) as well as helping promote my mother's guesthouse.  It's a nice site to use alongside others (blogs, FB, Twitter), and to check out after a large event attended by many camera-wielding people (gigs, festivals, etc).

Good for keeping up with the world of pop, comedy (intentional and otherwise), games and a whole lot more.  I can't be bothered with video commenting but I think some people are deeply immeshed there, also using video responses to react to what they have seen.  Like Flickr, good when used alongside other social networks though it bugs me that most music videos can't be embedded. Silly record labels.

Like YouTube, but slicker.  The alternative for iPad owners since their tablets don't play YouTube and other flash-based stuff (because of Apple's hissy fit with Adobe).  Lots of great short films can be found here though not much else.

I worry for Google.  They are trying so hopelessly to be the next Facebook but... I'm not sure it's working. They are like that party guest who goes on and on about the latest gadget they bought to a decreasing circle of interested ears. Google Buzz and Google Wave tanked; Google+ is doing remotely better, but only because of the novelty factor.  What exacty are they offering that's different from the other social networks? Little tweaks to a service are not enough: you need the next paradigm shift to attract the world's attention. Google+ ain't that. I like its structure though and how smoothly/easily it runs. I use it for posting music videos from the 80s. The idea of circles has meant that a lot of people treat it like a mixture of Facebook (inner sanctums) with Twitter (following strangers).  It might take off if celebrities adhere.

This is another social network owned by Google that hardly anyone knows about... except for brasilians.  It's MASSIVE in Brasil, to the point of even the elderly and babies being on it.  The Portuguese language has now a word - orkutizacao - which means "turning something into Orkut; turning chavvy; appealing to the lowest-common denominator."  Everyone who is "cool" in Brasil has now switched to Facebook (especially - ironically enough - after The Social Network came out) and now there's constant moaning in my FB feed on how the "orkutizacao" of Facebook is just round the corner.  Orkut is PERFECT for downloading episodes of brasilian soaps and American TV shows - there are tons of communities dedicated to that.

once competed with LJ for the attention of writers.  I think those days are over.  Some people who have a niche or angle to their blog, and have been with Blogger from the start, are still there, but most have now moved on to Wordpress.  They've done some changes to it recently which has improved functionality, and they have introduced the mosaic viewing mode to make your blog look more like a Tumblr account (worried much?), but there's nothing really special about it otherwise. 

A lot of writers and services use this; it's a pretty good system and has a free statistics counter that is quite addictive (I'm fascinated by what people type in search engines to reach my blogs.)  It's a little bit clunky when you are first trying to set up your blog, but you eventually get the hang of things.  Commenting is decent though nothing like Livejournal in its possibilities.  I used to have a blog in Portuguese here but I got swamped with evangelical Christians when I wrote a short story about a preacher seduced by a gay angel.  I deactivated my blog and moved to...

The fastest growing social network in my opinion. Very young-centred, very image based, but some interesting organisations are already there (The New Yorker, Discovery, Newsweek) providing good text too. Very limited when it comes to commenting (you need a Disqus account) but maybe that's something still to be developed (or maybe the service's users just don't care?)  It reminds me a lot of LJ's early years, when people posted tons of quizzes and cat photos.  Those young'uns from ten years ago grew up and got themselves Wordpress accounts; their baby siblings are now all over Tumblr.

If a tree falls in the woods and there is nobody around, does it make a sound?

I've come to the conclusion that LJ is one of the best social networks out there.  Its main strength are the deeply personal stories shared here - whether they are in big communities like the Ladies Loos or in safely secured posts.  When you have those people on your friends list, you are rewarded with some of the best writing available online. LJ has also been getting better over the years - listening to its users (unlike Facebook and Google), and sheding all those people that used to only post quizzes and photos of cats (presumably moved on to Facebook.)  LJ is also very good at creating friendships: I've lost count of how many people I've met here who have gone on to become very good friends of mine.  Can users in Blogger, Wordpress, etc, claim as many online friends that are meaningful?   Sure, there are some hiccups, it's not as popular as it used to be and it seems to be the Russian version of Orkut, but I think it's still a worthwhile site.  It may be clunky and as relevant as Woolsworth but I still like it.

I've decided to post at least once a day on LJ from now on, even if it's just an embeded video, to show my appreciation for all those times years ago when it saved me from boredom in the office. I don't want to go anywhere else with my mundane posts about wine stains on the carpet.  I want to stay here.
commonpeople1: (Default)

I echo [ profile] millionreasons when I say that one of the best blogs out there - especially if you love history and London - is Nickel in the Machine. I can't recommend it enough.


Jun. 18th, 2011 01:23 pm
commonpeople1: (Default)
If you are a writer or enjoy creative writing, and you are on Twitter, I've discovered a great little way of sparking things off through HerLindsayness's blog. She writes:

Created by Monica-Marie, the idea (behind #wordmongering) is that at the top of every hour, participants write as much as they can for thirty minutes. Then they take a 30-minute break to stretch, snack, and generally refresh for the next round. You can participate in as few or as many rounds per day as you have time and energy for, and the encouragement shared between writers is invigorating. There is no contest and every word count, no matter how small, is congratulated.

I'm going to do my first one in 45 minutes. See you there?

Meanwhile on LJ, [ profile] millionreasons has started a random postcard project which I also find interesting. I'm following her example and thinking of using Igor for my postcards.

Yesterday, an idiot carrying a cappuccino machine into the train dropped part of it on my elbow.  It's hurtin'.  I then got soaked wandering around London dropping off brochures for my arts festival in July.  At midnight, a brasilian friend arrived from Germany to stay with us for the weekend and we spent a few hours talking while I heated for him chicken and mushroom soup. I'm fighting annoying manflu so I can be well enough for drinks with him and his friends tonight.

38 minutes until my first #wordmongering...
commonpeople1: (Default)
"On Facebook and Twitter, you are performing to attract people – you are dancing emotionally, on a platform created by a large corporation. People's feelings bounce back and forth – happy Stakhanovites, ignoring and denying the system of power. It's like Stalin's socialist realism. Both Twitter and socialist realism are innocent expressions of the ideology of the time, which don't pull back and show the wider thing they are part of. We look back on socialist realism not as innocent but as a dramatic expression of power; it expresses the superiority of the state, which was the guiding belief at the time. I think sometime in the future people will look back at the millions and millions of descriptions of personal feelings on the internet and see them in similar ways. This is the driving belief of our time: that 'me' and what I feel minute by minute is the natural centre of the world. Far from revealing that this is an ideology – and that there are other ways of looking at human society – what Twitter and Facebook do is reinforce the feeling that this is the natural way to be."
Adam Curtis, Have computers taken away our power?
commonpeople1: (Car)

They heard me singing and they told me to stop
Quit these pretentious things and just punch the clock
These days my life, I feel it has no purpose
But late at night the feelings swim to the surface

'Cause on the surface the city lights shine
They're calling at me, come and find your kind
Sometimes I wonder if the World's so small
That we can never get away from the sprawl

Living in the sprawl
Dead shopping malls rise like mountains beyond mountains
And there's no end in sight
I need the darkness, someone please cut the lights 

- Arcade Fire: Sprawl II (Mountains Beyond Mountains)


Mar. 31st, 2011 03:52 pm
commonpeople1: (Bookclub)
Remember when Livejournal used to be like this?

*nostalgic sigh*
commonpeople1: (Glasses)
Top 15 searches that landed on my journal in 2010:

  1. gay police
  2. james mcavoy
  3. handsome gay
  4. gerard butler
  5. paul terry
  6. bodice ripper
  7. "i found someone new" hunx
  8. police gay
  9. david o'hara
  10. drink and dance
  11. "gerard butler"
  12. dance and drink
  13. polisi gay
  14. gay handsome
  15. gay police officers

Best searches that landed on my journal in 2010:

  1. chavs in canada
  2. "beauty is a dark cloud when you're alone"
  3. "one night of sin is what i'm paying for"
  4. "twinks in drag " wined dinned and sexed videos
  5. anne strangeways foot creams
  6. britney ass out
  7. chatting up various kooks and screws
  8. did patti smith drink?
  9. drink and screw package
  10. excuse letter for gym freeze
  11. gothic toilet
  12. gramas and garndpas like to screw
  13. i'm bored. please send drugs
  14. moms over 30 reading mills & boon books
  15. need names of people that live in bell gardens californa
  16. open your ass to global warming
  17. peter andre porn
  18. scottish men want fat
  19. suzy and william friends plumstead london
  20. texas death row computer access
  21. the world is up shit creek.
  22. trannies on rollerskates soho london
  23. what happened to ljdrama
  24. what hooks people into cults?
  25. what wags drink
  26. where can i find screws in brick lane
  27. whitstable meth lab

There were a total of 702 search terms that landed on my journal, starting from April in 2010 when I installed Google Analytics.

Looking forward to what 2011 has to offer. ;-)

Humble Pie

Nov. 5th, 2010 11:49 am
commonpeople1: (Karaoke)
Stephen Fry has posted a long explanation on his website about the whole kerfuffle involving his "comments" on women not enjoying sex. The first thought I had when I read it? "How 2003 Livejournal of him!" Doesn't it remind you of one of those posts people used to write on LJ after they'd been caught in a flamewar where they shoved both feet in their mouth? Woe is me, woe is me, but wait oh I'd never say such a thing and look how silly I am and this is what I mean, and I'm going to delete my journal if you don't believe in me. I glimpsed a shard of megalomania beneath his response's Wildean pastiche which makes me want to Tweet to him: "follow Mozzer's example and be quiet".

On a separate note, it will be a miracle if Katie survives X Factor this weekend. Contestants are singing "American Anthems"; I had a look at some of the chosen songs and it's going to be a boring show.

[Poll #1640999]


Oct. 1st, 2010 07:31 pm
commonpeople1: (Jump)
I'm kicking off [ profile] neenaw's Save Livejournal Month[1] in October with:

Drinka Pinta Ollie A Day.

Enter a word for your own slogan:

Generated by the Advertising Slogan Generator. Get more Ollie slogans.


[1] [ profile] neenaw, amongst others, is trying to revive LJ by posting once a day. Facebook and Twitter are good for short bursts but is there anywhere else better for rambling confessions, flame wars and memes? Join us and Save LJ too!

[2] Via [ profile] needler!
commonpeople1: (Icecream)
The first question you must ask yourself when looking for a job is: can I turn it into a successful blog? Sitting this morning at my local Job Centre Plus[1], I saw a job ad for "Ambulance Cleaner". 45 hours a week, minimum rate per hour. Although the Ambulance Blog genre is already well represented by Suzi Brent's Nee Naw and Tom Reynold's Blood, Sweat and Tea, I think there's still space for someone reporting from the frontline after the shifts. In this day and age of Broken Britain's Bing Drinking, someone must report on the vomit that needs to be scraped off the insides of weekend ambulances, and of the struggle to make ends meet with a pitiful salary after a long week. Someone must leave little secret love notes for ambulance drivers so they can feel happier speeding across the city.

The people at the Job Centre were lovely - they breezed me through the interview even though I hadn't brought my latest lease or payslip. Regulars studied me from the corner of their eyes. I got a handshake at the end and an interview next week with a Careers Advice company in the city. Let's see if they can get me a job mowing lawn landscape gardening.

I went to Mile End's swimming pool afterwards, which was much cleaner than the one by Bethnal Green. It's probably because hardly anyone uses it. On a negative note, three blokes thought the Fast Lane was about standing in the middle of it splashing water at each other.

I'm now working on a job application for a Park Ranger position in my borough (insert amusing blog name somehow alluding to my sexuality and that I can't drive the park's truck due to lack of license.)

[1] Why is it Plus? Do I get more value for money? More jobs in less space?
commonpeople1: (Spring Break)
I've been using Google Analytics with my Livejournal for a month now. It was my dream for years to be able to collect data on who visits my journal: what do they type into Google to find me? Which posts are most popular? Where are my readers from? Google Analytics tells you everything, even who on LJ is reading you, and who isn't. In that sense, Google Analytics is more effective than LJ Toys because as far as I can see it can't be blocked like LJ Toys, though maybe LJ Toys gives you more indepth info on LJ users (who don't know how to block it) whereas Google Analytics only tells you if they were there or not. LJ users who are not on your friends list don't get logged unless they read posts' comments - that's where LJ Guests comes in handy (if they are signed up for that, though.)

These are the top 10 searched terms that land on my journal:

1. "gerard butler"
2. james mcavoy
3. camera obscura the nights are cold
4. dance and drink
5. gay police
6. gerard butler
7. best gay
8. david o'hara
9. handsome gay
10. "james mcavoy"

No surprise then that my post popular post is this one from 10th April 2007, featuring hot hunks from Scotland that appear on the list above. The post got 97 unique visits in the past 30 days. The second most popular post was my review of Camera Obscura's new single that was released on May 17. No doubt people searching for a free MP3.

And here are some of the quirky search terms leading people to my journal:

  • americans aren't welcome
  • ghost london fields
  • britney ass out
  • chavs in canada
  • toronto chavs
  • devil is gay
  • did patti smith drink?
  • elongatedcunts
  • full gay gym shower black machine
  • hypocritical church sloane square
  • lots of muscle maries
  • my plans for the summer
  • one two three shame is knocking on the door
  • pragues underbelly
  • screw livejournal
  • suzy and william friends plumstead london
  • the world is up shit creek
  • what do you call a group of people who live religiously?
  • what hooks people into cults?
  • who really killed ipswich prostitutes
  • www. my horny old gray
  • you suck certificate

There's a creative writing exercise in there somewhere... I love it! Keep them coming, Internet Weirdos.
commonpeople1: (Clarice)
My novel for this year's National Novel Writing Month is called Jason Voorhees Is Dead. I wrote just under 20.000 words before I had to give up due to repetitive strain injury (an ongoing problem since then.) However, Jason is not dead. I plan on taking up with him again sometime in the holidays, when my fingers are relax'a'licking good.

By the way, next time you slag off Jason because he's ugly or he killed scores of horny youngsters, just remember that he was a victim first of all. Of bullying, of his wacky mom. Have some compassion.

Some weekends ago, at Warp Records 20th Anniversary, I was sitting in The Coronet's bleachers resting my feet when my friend Natallica asked if I had a mild form of OCD. Yes, I replied. I think I do. Because when iTunes' Genius and Amazon's Recommendations tell me to listen to something, I make a Spotify playlist out of it. Because what's random to others is synchronicity to me. Because, like I said, I haven't given up on Jason yet and will make those 50.000 words squeal by the finishing line.

A mild, mild form of OCD.

I've been posting my NaNoWriMo ramblings over at Succès de scandale because Wordpress has this neat system that tells you what people type in Google to find you. From those searches I create new posts - a type of spiral that feeds back into Google and pulls closer ever more people interested in those topics.

I also have Google Alerts for anything to do with succès de scandale. Over a week ago, a story came up about the American artist Ed Kienholz and how an exhibition of his in the 60s was particularly scandalous. I was suffering from insomnia that night so I took the opportunity to write a short piece about it. As I was finishing, my brasilian friend B woke up and found me in the living room. The piece wasn't discussed between us.

Later in the day, when I got back from work, I found B sitting in our living room checking his e-mail. He was coming down from a LSD trip. He told me he'd been downtown and visited the National Gallery, but an art piece by Ed Kienholz freaked him out so much that he had to find refuge with Van Gogh's Sunflowers. Do you see the beauty in this synchronicity? Now, I have to of course visit the National Gallery and see this piece before it leaves. I'm hoping that new doors will open from the visit.
commonpeople1: (Default)
Now that Livejournal is working with Google's AdSense, does that mean we'll soon be able to use Analytics on our journals?

I still don't understand why that feature hasn't been given to us. Would make things here a lot more interesting if we knew what exactly people typed into search engines to find us.
commonpeople1: (Krys)
Margaret Atwood

Margaret Atwood's upcoming sci-fi/speculative fiction novel: The Year of the Flood

Adam One, the kindly leader of the God’s Gardeners – a religion devoted to the melding of science, religion, and nature – has long predicted a disaster. Now it has occurred, obliterating most human life. Two women remain: Ren, a young dancer locked away in a high-end sex club, and Toby, a former God’s Gardener, who barricades herself inside a luxurious spa. Have others survived? Ren’s bio-artist friend Amanda? Zeb, her eco-fighter stepfather? Her onetime lover, Jimmy? Or the murderous Painballers? Not to mention the CorpSeCorps, the shadowy policing force of the ruling powers... As Adam One and his beleaguered followers regroup, Ren and Toby emerge into an altered world, where nothing – including the animal life – is predictable.

Sounds to me like a sequel of sorts to Oryx and Crake and completely barmy. I'll probably love it. I hope The Painballers are a homage of sorts to that classic The Warriors.

And her tour blog:

And her Twitter: [ profile] atwood_twitter (thanks to [ profile] mjl)

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