Friday, May 18, 2007

Never mind the material. Just listen to the girl.

I too often get distracted by the blog, which really does get a tad 'earnest' itself at times, that I forget just how fun the estimable Grist can be.

So I can only direct you, with relish, at this, their review of Madge's latest incarnation, Earth Mother: And I Am a Recycled-Material Girl

Methinks she doth protesteth too darn after the band's wagon has rolled outta Dodge. And, it seems, perhaps with less than her usual skill.

I have no clue how to link to it as it came as an email, but here it is as received. Go to Grist and try and find it there if you fancy their links (which are many and, I'm sure, worthy, if only of note):

Madonna releases single to support Live Earth climate efforts

What is it about climate change that makes music ... suck? First we had Melissa Etheridge's "I Need to Wake Up," the earnest, Oscar-winning Inconvenient Truth anthem. Now we have Madonna's "Hey You," a somnolent single released this week in conjunction with Live Earth, the continents-spanning climate-awareness concerts planned for 7/7/07. While we can't complain about our favorite virgin's intentions -- the single is downloadable for free for a week, and Microsoft is donating 25 cents for each of the first million downloads to the Alliance for Climate Protection -- we can complain about her music. Because its vapid lyrics and "stripped-down, folksy" style suuuuck. Still, Live Earth's Kevin Wall called the release of the ballad, which Madge will perform at the London concert, "an incredible boost to our efforts to get people engaged in the environmental cause." And you should go download it! To support climate relief! Plus you might love it! In which case, ignore everything else we just said.

I wonder if they'll ask Bob Geldof what he thinks of it? Is it just me, or is Live Earth off to a less than glorious start even from the eco-side of the fence?

Awareness, people! Be aware, be very aware! And don't forget to buy the T-shirt.

They are cracking me up!

Before I go to bed, I just have to get off my chest the latest idiocy from out national broadcaster.

A few years ago, a dirty great lump of ice in the middle of the Canadian wastewaters broke off.

Now, it is probably not a good thing, and possibly a further sign, should we need it, of a warming trend climatically. So far, so factual.

But what do we get? Po-faced, the anchor announces that: 'this is what it could have looked like; before we get what seemed like a cut-price CGI animatic to the opening sequence of Ice Age, the movie. Basically a cartoon of a white thing with a crack running along it.

Then, just for good measure, we get a blow by blow account of the BBC reporter and team struggling, you guessed it, to get there in a chartered airplane to stand on this two year old lump of floating ice, ' understand what may have caused this'.

For some reason, all watching thought this more of an effective p*ss take than the preceding Have I Got New For You, and fell off their chairs laughing. I sooo feel my licence fee is being well spent.

ADDENDUM - yes, it's now also on the web: Mission to Ice Island - 'you can follow the progress of myself and producer Mark Georgiou and cameraman Duncan Stone.'

Them. The Other Them. And Us in the Middle

'Call us Malcolm, and we are strong (well, we can write really vicious blogs, anyway)!

After a mind-frying week, I decided to have a gentle surf of the 600 legitimate emails in my In-box that have built up over the last few days. Most are from e-newsletters, and will, sadly, now never be read, but the title of one caught my attention enough to read, and I am glad I did. It's good:

MTV Misses the Mark on Eco-Activists

This synergises so well with what I have experienced and write about, especially lately, over here. There is a really disturbing trend for the media and politics to try to drive wedges in matters green for their own short-termist ends.

This must be fought at every silly, sick little attempt to score a cheap vote or easy rating by using concern for the future so selfishly.


I wrote to compliment the author, who has responded most charmingly:

Many thanks for your comments, and for taking the time to write in. I’m glad you enjoyed the post, and thanks for linking to it from your own blog!

I was moved to write on this because there were so many obvious, easy, constructive alternatives to what they had in mind. I’ve gotten lots of support from my friends and colleagues about it as well. I’ve been a part of SustainUS—The US Youth Network for Sustainable Development, which is an all-volunteer youth-run organization that sends young people to UN meetings, like the Commission on Sustainable Development, to have a voice. Being in great company there, it is so obvious to me that MTV would have plenty of candidates who would 1) make great TV, and 2) have innovative, educational, and important things to share.

Glad to be in touch.


I hope to stay in touch with such a thoughtful correspondent.

Friday Fun

One should not mock. But as I sit here munching my sarnie I have decided to share a couple of images that tickled me a bit from my travels at the Total Packaging Show. They just go to show that when your travel, your language travels with you.

I have to say one stand could have attracted unwelcome attention; the other may have had some trouble attracting anything at all.

By way of balance, and to show that as a Brit I laugh with and not at, I do recall that that iconic sports car - The Triumph Stag - was discovered to mean something like 'Goat Droppings' in Turkish.