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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 [livejournal.com 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!
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[livejournal.com profile] millionreasons has pointed me in the direction of this post by Rebecca Solnit in the London Review of Books that perfectly encapsulates my feelings (and possibly yours as well) about going off the grid:

In or around June 1995 human character changed again. Or rather, it began to undergo a metamorphosis that is still not complete, but is profound – and troubling, not least because it is hardly noted. When I think about, say, 1995, or whenever the last moment was before most of us were on the internet and had mobile phones, it seems like a hundred years ago. Letters came once a day, predictably, in the hands of the postal carrier. News came in three flavours – radio, television, print – and at appointed hours. Some of us even had a newspaper delivered every morning.

It's well worth a read.

There's a link also doing the rounds on Facebook that has made me think of this question about excessive internet use: Why Generation Y Yuppies Are Unhappy. From there, I ended up stumbling on 7 Ways To Be Insufferable on Facebook and I realised how much Image Crafting I've been engaged with[1].  But... aren't we all?  Is it possible not to Image Craft while online?  It feels like a conundrum.

Those two Facebook-related articles aren't explicitly about using the internet too much, but I feel you can infer from them that a lot of malady comes from it.

[1] I was doing this thing for a while where I posted online every Monday morning a photo of whichever cafe I was sitting in, doing a bit of creative writing.  Then, I went dancing with some friends and they said (in the best possible way) that those photos made them feel like shit because they always saw them when they were sitting in their offices, staring at the horrible week unfold in front of them.
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Do any of you know if there's an easy way of searching for info in your old LJ posts?  I want to find the posts where I wrote about "The History Game" - the game where I move chronologically through history books, trying to get to modern times.

I have a new bad idea game: I'm purchasing one album per week and listening to it non-stop, with the idea of then writing a little review for them.  I suppose I want to get into the habit of reviewing music, thinking of albums as novels, feeling a little more what's been put into them.  Mostly new albums such as: the latest from Camera Obscura, Noblesse Oblige, Future Bible Heroes, Jon Hopkins and, this week, Austra.  Looking forward to checking out the new ones from Editors and White Lies.

I tried listening to Taylor Swift's "Red" the other day in the bathtub, in [livejournal.com profile] naturalbornkaos' homage, but the water went cold halfway through the album (It's got 22 songs or something - a proper double-LP).

I'm still taking that Coursera course "The Fiction of Relationship" but have decided to give it up at the halfway point.  I'll still get a Statement of Accomplishment, which is OK. (For completing the whole thing I think you get a SUPER Statement of Achievement.)  I just don't think I could deal with reading the upcoming five novels until August... I want to enjoy the sunshine while it's still here in London!

The allergies are killing me.
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I want to dance to this in the early hours of the morning in [livejournal.com profile] neenaw's basement disco.

Hello there

Mar. 3rd, 2013 06:09 pm
commonpeople1: (Avatar)
Hi [livejournal.com profile] amypops!  Waving hello. :-)
commonpeople1: (Default)
Alligator by Maurice Raymond
Alligator, a photo by Maurice Raymond on Flickr.
I'm reading at the moment Swamplandia! with [livejournal.com profile] verybadhorse. I've read until the end of Chapter 6 and this is what i think so far.

Read more... )
commonpeople1: (Default)
Elevator of Doom by olliefern
Elevator of Doom, a photo by olliefern on Flickr.
I came home yesterday to find a young woman sprawled inside my elevator, trying feebly to stand up. It must have been 6.30pm. She was barefoot and she held a plastic bag with two slippers inside. She stunk of booze and had dried blood on the hand she offered to me when I tried to help.

I called the concierge and the both of us carried her into the foyer and sat her down against the wall. Her left leg was dead - she kept saying it was broken. I asked the concierge if there was anything else I could do and he said it was fine - she was coming from Apt. ** and he knew her.

Other noteworthy moments in my day: going past Mile End Park in the bus and noticing various tents pitched up; and having lunch with [livejournal.com profile] millionreasons near my work. I asked if the tents in Mile End Park were to do with Occupy London spreading and she answered that no, it was just the rise of homelessness in the city.
commonpeople1: (Default)
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Dedicated to [livejournal.com profile] naturalbornkaos and [livejournal.com profile] neenaw
commonpeople1: (Default)
Veronica Falls @ Scala by Park012
Veronica Falls @ Scala, a photo by Park012 on Flickr.
Three shocking things I learnt about [livejournal.com profile] zenithed last night at Veronica Falls' gig at the Scala:
  • He's never seen a Friday 13th movie ("They look rubbish so I never bothered")
  • He's never played any JRPG (Final Fantasy, etc)
  • He thinks I'm growing a moustache
We met before the gig at a nearby pub called King's Cross Social Club, with Britpop on the speakers and some decent beer on tap. He didn't believe me when I said Shed Seven have quite a few good songs.

We arrived at the Scala just as Nutella Novella started their support act. I'm still reminded of Smashing Pumpkins when I hear them, but they've definitely moved their sound now to shoegaze waters (with new fringe bangs to match.)

Second support band was terribly-named Male Bonding - four Shoreditch blokes going for a Grunge sound. Terrible.

By the time Veronica Falls took to the stage, I had four pints sitting in my empty stomach. It was over too soon and the new songs didn't leave much of an impression.

We lost Zenithed on the way out and [livejournal.com profile] wink_martindale then pressured me into eating some Burger King because he'd "only nibbled on celery" that day. Back at home, the bed span whenever I closed my eyes so I had to sit in the living room and watch Poker Games on Channel 5 until I was good enough to sleep.

Woke up this morning to no water in the flat, including the toilet's cistern. Joy.
commonpeople1: (Default)
Thank you [livejournal.com profile] naturalbornkaos for introducing me to Porcelain Raft. They have a very unique sound, with echoes of Jane's Addiction, Girls and shoegazer summers in the early 90s. I'm in serious danger of developing an obsession:

commonpeople1: (Default)
Voguing in NYC by MichelleMcCormack
Voguing in NYC, a photo by MichelleMcCormack on Flickr.
I get the feeling the next big flash-in-a-pan trend with (straight) hipsters will be voguing. I say straight because with the gays it's something that never really went away, even if only as a panto move you make in the club, encircled by your friends.

But the whole 80s house sound keeps getting re-explored by ever more artists on the wake of Hercules and Love Affair, to the point where i think that voguing is the only way kids can go these days with their dayglo and moustaches. There's even a book just out on voguing and the House Ballroom scene in NY in the 80s.

I had this thought about voguing last night at 2 Many DJs Xmas gig at Brixton Academy. They were accompanied by guests - the fantastic DJ Paul Chambers and some other nameless DJs - but, more interestingly for me, Azari & III, who I had never heard of and who I really took to. Essentially, they are two singers who sing very catchy house pop in the style of Hercules & Love Affair accompanied by a band/DJs. Oh look, they have an ace single coming out soon!



I was with [livejournal.com profile] loveinsuburbia, who kept wishing they'd bugger off the stage; but I think she was just incapable of truly appreciating their goodness thanks to the constant flirting between her and the boy across the way we nicknamed Superman.[1] We had tickets for the Circle at the Brixton Academy, which meant dancing in front of your seat and being distracted by ushers going back and forth trying to stop people leaning over the railings to gape at the downstairs crowd.

There was this really cheeky, tiny Irish bloke completely off his head who kept sneaking past security and dancing right by the rails, his hands raised to the stage, a big grin on his face. Then he'd turn around and high five us. When we'd see security coming, either us or Superman and his mates would pull him away until security were gone.

It was a great night of dancing, and I was happy to realise that I could stay up until 3am non-stop moving without the need of MDMA. Just a couple of pear ciders, gin and tonics and water did the trick for me. 2 Many DJs set was great but the next time with them will either have to be in a field or a proper club.

For those of you who don't know what voguing is, here's the trailer for Paris is Burning (1990).

[1] The flirting got so silly that I had to actually give Superman a thumbs up as I walked away (without [livejournal.com profile] loveinsuburbia's knowledge), to see if he'd finally make his move. But the silly bugger was either too shy and fried or he really thought I was her boyfriend, despite me camping it up to dissuade him of the idea. A pair of good looking guys later introduced themselves to [livejournal.com profile] loveinsuburbia and again, as they chatted to her, they kept looking at me with that "are you her boyfriend?" look. Good manners still exist, people.
commonpeople1: (Default)
I was by the photocopier this morning when one of the directors came up to me and asked how I was doing.  Fine and you? I replied. "So I hear you are the best temp we have ever had," she said. That made me stumble. Really? I mumbled something about this being a quiet time and my luck at not having many tasks to deal with.  It made me feel so good about myself the rest of the day.

Then this night I thought, maybe she says this to all temps?  Not that she doesn't mean it, but, as a very cunning woman (as most women are) she noticed I was a little too quiet, a little too set in keeping one foot out of the door, and this was her way of lifting me up and making me feel more part of the team (as all temps before me?)  Women are smart creatures...

I went to Boddington Café for lunch with colleagues.  It apparently used to be a squat ages ago before being turned into a very affordable vegetarian/vegan restaurant.  It was delicious, with a great atmosphere. Highly recommended if you are in the Vauxhall area.

On Sunday, I met old colleagues from King's College for brunch at Soho Townhouse. A bit too expensive for my taste but the breakfast was good.  Rupert Everett was sitting in one corner with a pair of good looking (gay) men.  One of my friends thought she spotted Billy Zane with his parents, but I had a look and I'm not convinced it was him.

On Saturday, I hung out with [livejournal.com profile] loveinsuburbia, [livejournal.com profile] neenaw and [livejournal.com profile] king_prawn at the Pig Ear's Beer and Cider Festival, in Hackney. It was interesting. Our sport was to sit in the second floor circle and try to spot gay people in the crowd.  Later, I went back to Flapping Central and drank some more, ate some dodgy pizza (I swear I'm never eating spicy chicken takeaway EVER AGAIN), and talked back at the X Factor.  Flapping Central's wi-fi is called Scrotum.

My Bubus

Nov. 22nd, 2011 08:40 pm
commonpeople1: (Default)
beauty after rembrant by Aquini
beauty after rembrant, a photo by Aquini on Flickr.
A few days ago Kelly Rowland told me she'd like to visit my mom's guesthouse in Brasil with her boyfriend.

'Are you sure Kelly?' I asked.

'I'm sure bubu,' she said with a slight smile. I explained to her how my mom would arrange for a driver to pick her up at her hotel in São Paulo then drive them for two hours until they reached the guesthouse. The room at the guesthouse would be smaller to what she was used to, but the views were fantastic.

When I told my mom Kelly Rowland was flying down, she asked 'Who?' 'Kelly Rowland!' I said. 'And get the camera ready to take loads of photos so we can then promote her visit afterwards and get more guests.'

Later, I was hanging out with Madonna and two friends of mine when the subject of music reared its head. 'What's your favourite music at the moment?' I asked Madonna, who kept flitting back and forth in the TV room, unable to sit still. 'Treme,' she replied.

'Treme? That's Sinead O'Connor's favourite too!' I said but Madonna was not impressed. She'd heard some negative things about Sinead.

'Sinead is lovely,' I promised to Madonna, and my friends agreed. 'Honestly, you should get to know her a little better.'

When Madonna turned her back, I asked my friends if I should log onto Facebook and check in "with" Madonna. They laughed and I realised I didn't know their names.
commonpeople1: (Default)
Cold MirrorsCold Mirrors by C.J. Lines

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This is the first collection of short stories by British author C.J. Lines, bringing together pieces he has published in the past ten years in a variety of places, from magazines to anthologies. These stories vary between short vignettes to long horror tales, mixing the modern macabre with creepy Victoriana.

C.J. Lines is better known for his first novel, Filth Kiss, which was a sort of horror roller coaster ride set in a middle England town. The qualities in that novel that I loved so much - the attention to detail to what it's like to live in England today, from the banality of work and family relationships to the small-mindedness of provincial life - can be found in these collection of stories and are, in my opinion, its triumph. People who enjoy ghost stories from the Victorian age, and that style of writing, will also love some of the stories gathered here, in particular Debut. My favourite stories were The Trending, about the dead coming back to life with the help of Twitter, and Nostalgia Ain't What It Used To Be, for bringing together the weird with 80s New Wave music.

A collection to keep you company for the long winter nights ahead.

View all my reviews
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Feeling Gloomy
Feeling Gloomy's bar

When I first moved to London in 2001, we lived with three lesbians and Erika (the non-lesbian) in a Victorian house in Stoke Newington.  Some people called it Murder Mile, some people called it the lesbian neighbourhood.  You saw girls everywhere, on dates at the pizzaria on Church Street, at the girls-only karaoke just round the corner - even at the gay bar on Stoke Newington High Street owned by a pair of blokes.  It's all gone!  What happened?  Where have all the lesbians gone to?  On Friday night, my brasilian friends Vini Bambini and Bia invited me over for drinks and food before we hit Stoke Newington's streets for a bit of gay drinks (something I hadn't done in years.)  There's only one gay bar now in Stoke Newington, Oak Bar, which turned out to be depressingly empty and loud.  We had a pint, played some snooker and stumbled to Dalston thinking it would be a good idea to try the Superstore. Hunger got the better of us and we called it a night at 12.30am after a chicken burger meal with Coke and fries.

The New Rose

The New Rose

Yesterday, I went to the gym and cleaned some of the flat in preparation for [livejournal.com profile] wink_martindale's return today.  In the evening, I met up with [livejournal.com profile] loveinsuburbia for a coffee before we walked together to the New Rose pub for [livejournal.com profile] zenithed's birthday drinks. Reserved tables, friends, new faces, people I hadn't seen in a long time, a few pizzas, some whisky, some beer, some Lady Gaga text messages, chats about everything ranging from Big Brother to the Holocaust, then a plan to walk up the road and do a bit of dancing at Feeling Gloomy. (Didn't I promise at the start of the year I'd never go back?)

Feeling Gloomy was ace!  Turned out to be its 6th anniversary, celebrated with the distribution of cake, The Smiths' "Unhappy Birthday" and a free beer token if you made a donation at the door to SANE.  It was still empty when we arrived so we took the seats closest to the dancefloor and hovered over it for the rest of the night.  Very soon it got crowded and animated to FG's classic playlist: The Cure, The Cult, New Order, motown classics, Blur, Pixies, The Breeders, and so on.  As [livejournal.com profile] zoo_music_girl correctly pointed out, it was Student Union Disco Night. 

We ended the night back at [livejournal.com profile] zenithed's, chatting in his living room and drinking tea until 4 in the morning.  [livejournal.com profile] loveinsuburbia and I then had the grim and knackering task of catching a nightbus home without freezing to death or falling asleep and losing our stop.  We had three hours of sleep before mystery caller started ringing my landline non-stop.  I've been feeling sensitive and out-of-it ever since.
commonpeople1: (Default)

Lloyd Cole And The Commotions - Rattlesnakes on MUZU.TV

This post is dedicated to [livejournal.com profile] millionreasonsand [livejournal.com profile] inbetween_girl.

And wishing all of you still reading LJ a lovely weekend.
commonpeople1: (Motorbike)
Mile End Snooze by olliefern
Mile End Snooze, a photo by olliefern on Flickr.
This walk through Victoria and Mile End Parks brought us to a shaded bench facing a small water feature. Two nearby men lie in the sun; one of them sleeps with his head resting on a sofa cushion, a bottle with red squash by his side.

London competes with its own parks: sirens and pigeon coos, cigarette smoke and flower scents, lush trees and apartment blocks, cloudless blue skies and small wind turbines, black coots and boys shouting a game.

After this brief writing exercise we'll buy (veggie) burger buns and antihistamines. We'll celebrate the end of this sunny Easter weekend with popcorn and Game of Thrones' second episode. We'll listen to music and step out onto our balcony like English Evita Perons.

On the way back home, a cyclist is knocked off his bike on Mile End Road. The driver stands by her car redirecting traffic while bystanders make sure he doesn't move his head. An ambulance squeals down the wrong direction. All drivers slow down to take a gooooooood looooooong look. Hoping for a bit of blood on Jesus' ressurection day?

I'm no better: I text [livejournal.com profile] neenaw asking if she was the one who sent the ambulance. Nope, she replies, it's not her area and she's off work. (I also forgot, again, that she no longer sends ambulances.)

All pharmacies are closed and I resign myself to only getting my precious antihistamines tomorrow.
commonpeople1: (Schiele)
The Most Incredible Thing

I accidentally ended up in a party last night with Jodie Marsh.  She is tiny.  She was wearing an all black, tight outfit, high heels and long dark extensions. It's a sin to see someone so young wearing so much make-up.  There were other famous people there, like that blond woman who's always on TV shows about music, and that older guy with long hair and a moustache, and those young people who are probably in Skins or something.  And I think I spotted the actress who used to play Ian Beale's wife and died falling down the stairs.

It was the press night for The Most Incredible Thing at Saddler's Wells - a dance piece collaboration between the Pet Shop Boys and coreographer Javier De Frutos.  Purely accidental - the £10 tickets we had were arranged by our friends Vini Bambini and Bia months ago and nobody warned me to dress to the nines.  Suburbia was absent.  Everyone's life there was on show, flamboyant clothes below those so hard smiles.  Every actor needs an audience; every action is... a performance. West End girls mingling with Dalston boys.  Two kisses on the cheek.  Very thick quiffs.  Expensive midriffs.  Sugar and daddies.  Buckets of champagne everywhere and me with my large glass of white wine.  A few people from my past: that woman from the NT who is so nice; that girl who assisted the directors (now busily working the cord that separated the riff raff from the VIPs.)  Avoided them both.

Sadler's Wells gets hot when it's full. I thought of [livejournal.com profile] fj and how he should be there with us. We sat near the roof, our view the beginning of a roller coaster's descent.  The show started well, with robotic domino dancing to a disco beat swelled by the orchestra.  Then tedium set in: uninteresting fairy-tale, lame jokes about reality shows, gaps that were far too long, clichéd choreography (apparently, full of references to famous classical ballet, but who cares?) and a limp climax.  What have I done to deserve this?

Outside, we met Bia's uncle and his friends - an older generation that loved the piece. It massaged their brains with all the classical references it threw on the stage.  But to us, with our ignorant gut reactions, it didn't say a thing beyond "is it Christmas?"  Left to my own devices, I'd have taken the show's music to a smoky nightclub. The sun would welcome me from the club's gloom to where the streets have no name. I'd end up home and dry.
commonpeople1: (Bookclub)

Genesis - Bible
Originally uploaded by S.A.L.
I'm currently reading Barbara Kingsolver's The Poisonwood Bible with [livejournal.com profile] verybadhorse . We read one section, stop and comment before moving on. I just finished "Genesis" and I'm now halfway through the second-part, "The Revelation". Some thoughts under the tag on...

Genesis )

Chug-a-Lug

Oct. 1st, 2010 07:31 pm
commonpeople1: (Jump)
I'm kicking off [livejournal.com 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.

[2]

[1] [livejournal.com 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 [livejournal.com profile] needler!

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