Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Squirrels Just Wanna Have Fun

In real life, I do actually call the Bear..well...Bear. He calls me Kitty and on occaison, Squirrel. (Yes I know, bleugh alert etc.) The squirrel part comes from the fact that we sometimes like to replace the word "girl" in a song lyric with "squirrel". Try it. It's fun.


Well it certainly amuses me no end. But then again so does the word "debrief".


Whilst wandering around Urban Outfitters, I was immediately drawn to a wallet with a lovely yellow squirrel on it. For €32. Balls to that, thought I. But one just like it was on sale for €18, and it transpired that the squirrel one was actually on sale too. Seeing as my last wallet had cost an entire euro in Dunnes, I figured it pretty much balanced out. While paying for my shiny new wallet, the guy behind the counter decided most kindly to give me a student discount. Even though I haven't been a student since 2006. So it actually only cost me €17.

Kitty: 1 World: 0

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Battle Of The Bears

I think it's safe to say that pretty much everyone loves the Fox's bissquits panda Vinnie, what with the cute little head on him and his fluffy mafioso charm. But there's a new bear on the block. Birdseye have taken it upon themselves to impose on tellies everywhere a judgemental polar bear that lives in people's freezers. I don't like him. He creeps me out. Also, he's voiced by Willem Defoe, so they might as well slap a flashing neon sign with VILLIAN! on it over his head. Therefore I propose another TV smackdown in the manner of my previous Cardassians vs Kardashians brainwave. Ad Bear (Polar) vs Ad Bear (Panda). Vinnie could take that creepy dot-eyed sociopath down to Chinatown without even leaving his armchair. For real.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

I'll Get Me Coat

A few weeks ago I was invited along to an A|Wear press day, as I occasionally manage to pass myself off as a fashion blogger of sorts somehow. Whilst having a nosy around their forthcoming Autumn stock, a certain coat reminded me of something. Last year I blogged about (read: got obsessed with) a coat that the ridetabulous Zooey Deschanel wore in Yes Man, how it turned out to be from a vintage shop and as such, disappointingly could not be had. Even now, I still get hits from people desperately Googling "zooey deschanel yes man navy coat", and my favourite search term so far:

"i want mother effing zooey deschanel navy freaking peacoat!"

So frustrated and yet too polite to even swear properly. Aw.

So, to the A|Wear coat at hand. Namely this navy and red schoolgirl coat, which is out now, costs €70 and really, seeing as Zooey's coat was a magical one-off, it's not an altogether bad substitute, no?

Monday, September 13, 2010

Carry On Regardless

The gorgeous and oft-parodied "Keep Calm and Carry On" poster was commissioned by the British Government during WWII but was never actually used, as it was only produced for use in a last case scenario should those fiendish Nazis manage to invade. It was rediscovered in a second hand bookshop in 2000 and has since taken on a life of its own, as the image is now public domain. I didn't realise this until today, when I went Googling it.

(As a total aside, does everyone else hate this new Google Instant thing as much as I do? Charlie Brooker hit the nail on head as per usual: "it's aggressive – like trying to order from a waiter who keeps finishing your sentences while ramming spoonfuls of what he thinks you want directly into your mouth." Seriously Charlie, ditch that Konnie Huq hottie and let's do this already.)

So, to the point of this post. There's some really good versions of this poster out there (I have to say, I'm loving the nerdtastic Wrath of Khan one above) but I think my favourite one thus far is by Osmand Nosse of the very funny A Cat Is A Cat.

They're for sale in his shiny new shop for only twenty of your Earth euros, and I suggest you have a looksee. I like it a lot.

Thursday, September 09, 2010

Picnic Pick 'n Mix

Oh I do so love Electric Picnic. Frolics and adventures aplenty are the order of the weekend and 2010 delivered just that. In the shape of:

> The amazing Miss Janelle Monae flooding the Body & Soul stage with pure funky brilliance and a really rather impressive hairstyle.

> Eels doing a brilliant version of Mr E's Beautiful Blues to the tune of Twist and Shout. It totally works!

> Discussing what a dickhead Bear Grylls is while drinking cans by the tent. Conclusion: He's an attention seeking cunt. But I think we all knew that already.

> Overhearing shouts of "Five-O!" in the campsite to herald the approach of the Gardaí. Whether there actually were any coming mattered not, because having just started watching The Wire, I found it hilarious. Particularly because one of our mates that was with us is in fact a Garda.

> Getting our collective groove on to Hypnotic Brass Ensemble. I do love a bit of a brass section. A nine-strong, rapping brass section that is.

> Túcan being typically amazing in both Body & Soul and at the fairylight-illuminated Salty Dog, with their Daft Punk mashup and brilliant version of Oxide and Neutrino's 90s classic No Good 4 Me.

> Gaping slack-jawed and bug-eyed at the sequinned performers of Fossett's Circus as they frantically spun around and twisted themselves into unbelieveable shapes while gripped to a rope, bits of ribbon, and at one point a type of fishing net, high above the circus ring. I was seriously on the edge of my plastic seat and nearly forgot I had popcorn in my hand. And a borrowed gourd of whiskey and (heh) red lemonade in the other.

> Glenn Wool in the Comedy Tent. I have a big ridiculous crush on him since seeing him at the Kilkenny Cat Laughs a few years ago.

> Ditching Hot Chip for Imelda May on the Main Stage. Because she's so unbelieveably amazing and I love her, that rockabilly badass. That particular girl crush has now gone up to eleven.

> The giant stage times that the Bear had printed out, laminated and attached to his belt for the weekend. We intended for it to be a joke and for him to wear it around his neck like a supersized timetable but it ended up being really handy (at times as something to sit on when the ground was wet) and went down a storm with manys a stranger.

Ginormo-timetable! And my small girly one.

> Seasick Steve on the Salty Dog. Seasick Steve on a boat! A BOAT! Genius.

> A mini cabaret act of sorts popping up on the Salty Dog between Seasick Steve and Túcan. By mini cabaret act I mean three sexy girls in sailor outfits dancing to Candyman. Love!

> Catching the tail end of the Lucent Dossier show. It's all a bit fuzzy to be honest, but the Bear recalls me exclaiming "there's a lot of bottom going on here!", regarding the scantily clad lady-performers.


> The RTÉ Symphony Orchestra entertaining a hungover, Sunday morning crowd with the theme tunes from Indiana Jones and James Bond.

> Loving Beardyman for about ten minutes and then wandering off when it all got a bit too dubstep and boring for my liking. Which led to us laughing like lunatics in the Comedy Tent at Steve Frost's Comedy Improv Allstars featuring that lovely big armchair of a man, Phil Jupitus.

> Pieminister. As always. Oh Pieminister, you delicious bastards with your tasty, tasty pies. And mash. And gravy. Seriously, I'm anybody's for a Henny Penny Pie.

> Fight Like Apes and their glorious, demented, riotous set in the Electric Arena. May Kay and Pockets wreaked absolute havoc on the stage, walloping giant iron bars together in an oversized sword-fight, spitting water all over the shop, crowd surfing and clambering over everything in sight. The whole band finished up by making shite of the stage, trashing their instruments to a chorus of "one more tune" from the crowd. Which clearly wasn't going to happen seeing as keyboards and guitars had just been smashed against the ground and the drumkit was kicked over. Fantastic.

(I've also written a post just about the music we encountered, for Culch.ie which is here. I know, two posts in such quick succession - I'm clearly losing the run of myself entirely.)

Tuesday, September 07, 2010

Better Than Celine Dion, Apparently

Some of you may already be familiar with the whimsical work of Eleventy Four, as I've previously posted videos to her songs here and here, and while many of us were Picnicking our socks off over the weekend, Eleventy was busy cooking up her new site, which can be found here.

I highly recommend that you wander over for a nosy around, partly so I can get around to developing my fisheye photos from Electric Picnic and ascertain whether they're actually any good and/or worth using in an EP post (given the state I was in for much of the weekend) and also to give myself a chance to recuperate and remember what the hell we actually got up to whilst drinking in a field for 3 days. But also because she's lovely and deadly in equal measures.

Thursday, September 02, 2010

T'was The Night Before Picnic

Lads. I got the tickets. But fuck me, was it a struggle of the uphill kind. After staying up watching the screen and continuously harassing people to vote all night Monday, the Bear and I watched the clock count down to midnight and delighted in the fact that I was in the lead and therefore had won. Hooray!

Game over.

But then the votes kept going. The bottle in second place, designed by Dick Dastardly (which, by the way, had appeared out of nowhere the day before and shot from zero to over 200 votes in 24 hours...not suspicious at all, right?) suddenly took the lead. But it was half one in the morning at that stage, well past the deadline, so it was still ok. We thought.

The next morning, we watched in horror as the votes kept piling in for Dick Dastardly, and while trying to find some reason as to why the competition didn't close on Monday like the official terms and conditions stated, discovered comments from the organisers on their Facebook page saying that closing time was midnight on Tuesday.


Those unbelieveable cunts, thought I. At that stage I was a good 40 votes behind Dick Dastardly. Both me and the Bear had tapped out all possible ways, means and people to get votes over the last two weeks. There was nothing else we could do. Disappointment She Wrote. I was bloody distraught and felt completely cheated. I put up a thank you on Facebook to everyone, and resigned myself to the fact that it was all over and there'd be no Picnic for me this year.

But then all of a shot, people started to rally around the cause of sending me and the Bear on our way to Stradbally. The votes started creeping upwards in my corner, my fantastic buddies and sprawling clans of cousins got on the case and the gap between me and Dick Dastardly was slowly narrowing throughout the day. By the time 9.00 in the evening rolled around, it was quite literally neck and neck, he'd be two votes ahead, I'd catch up and go four ahead, he'd frustratingly sprint into a ten vote lead, all the while his name was being vigourously cursed on Facebook, with accusations aplenty (he's a robot! he's a plant!) being bandied about by assorted friends and relatives.

My profile page that evening read like a live blog of the whole thing, it was madness. One cousin reckoned it was more exciting than the Eurovision and said she wasn't going to bed till it was over. Another fantabulous cousin and her fiancee put up a competition on their salon's Facebook page to get their clients to vote for me, the big legends. (The salon is Mint, by the way - ladies of Kilkenny, do pay them a call, they're only brilliant.) The whole ordeal had somehow morphed into a massive team effort, scrambling for the lead. So, for the second night in a row, we watched the clock count down to midnight, desperately appealing to FB profiles like Boob.ie, Maeve Higgins, Lady Umbrella and anyone else we could think of for votes. But Dick Dastardly had pulled away and taken the lead when the clock struck twelve.

And once again, the votes kept going. At half one my Dad rang to say I was leading. Back home, my parents, brother and his girlfriend had become vote generating machines. My mother was even temporarily kicked out of Facebook for posting the same message (ie. Kitty need VOTES! etc) to so many people's pages, the brat. I had to call it a night at some stage though.

The next morning I was still leading, the voting hadn't closed, but eventually it was announced that it HAD closed at midnight and votes were being counted. The winner was to be declared that morning. After midday, Dick Dastardly had been pleading on the fan page for the winner to be announced, accompanied by a screenshot of his bottle design in the lead at 12.05. While out for lunch with the Bear, Deadly Jumper Boy rang him to say I had won. My bottle design had the Winner banner across it in the Gallery page. What the what?

I wasn't convinced and wouldn't allow myself to get excited until I had heard from the organisers, but felt as though they could hardly go back on the decision now. Two hours later, they officially declared a draw and awarded tickets to both me and Dick Dastardly, "in the interest of fairness". Read: to make up for the disastrous handling and utter confusion throughout the entire competition.

Well thank fuck for that. Days of nail biting stress and being completely oblivious to the outside world, coupled with frantic phonecalls from assorted relatives going something like "We have him now Kitty, twenty ahead!" and "HOW IS HE STILL GETTING VOTES?". It was exhausting. Delighted though.

Thank you so much for voting. You rock.

However, it does mean that instead of getting a decent early night to recharge the old batteries before the impending weekend of mischief, I'll mostly be packing, decanting rum into plastic bottles and weighing up the practicalities of wearing a playsuit at a festival with Portaloos.