Can’t Get You Out Of My Head

It is late but I am not quite ready to give up on my crazy dream of writing an entire new blog post every single day. So! Here I am with fresh bedding and a lively mind with some statements and observations on day 876 of lockdown III. [1]

I just watched the first of the new (ish) Adam Curtis documentary, Can’t Get You Out Of My Head[1]. As with classic Simpsons and 70% of all culture, I’ve already seen the parodies before I got through the episode, but I enjoyed it immensely despite its occasional whimsy and laugh-out-loud segues.

Episode 1 of Can’t Get You Out Of My Head jumped between 1950s America, Britain and China.

Whatever you think of Curtis’ politics or the points he is making, there’s no denying he creates memorable and haunting television. The archive footage is, as always, magnificent, particularly the juxtaposition of dreary 1950s England with the atrocities of its dying Empire in Kenya. One shot in particular, of red jacketed huntsmen with their dogs and horses moving across fields in front of a looming and bleak industrial landscape of chimneys and factories, will stay with me.

What else happened today? Well, I applied to be a train driver. I once dated someone with a father who drove trains for Chiltern Railways, whose main piece of advice was, “never become a train driver”. Given the many thousands desperate for jobs, I am not expecting to become a train driver, but I applied without irony.

I had a phone call with my friend in Istanbul, who is understandably unsettled by Turkey’s descent into fascism. It says many things, and none of them good, that if she leaves, she absolutely will not come back to England.

I managed to write a sketch that I’m pretty happy with, despite being one of my more outre efforts. It was inspired, very indirectly, by The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya and the question of what happens when all of reality bends to one person’s will, and also that person is running a pub quiz.

I wrote and recorded a theme tune for my friend Rachel’s new improv / baking podcast. It is quite catchy and manages to express a profound ignorance of baking, so I’m pretty happy with it. 

Ah yes, and I wrote a Twitter thread about cycling, which was roundly ignored, so I’m posting it here too, just in case it’s of interest.

Footnotes

[1] As I wrote that sentence, I was distracted by a post-it note coming loose from the wall and fluttering, moth-like, to the floor. What does this augur?

[2] I also heard this very good Kylie song in the supermarket earlier, while buying muesli and marmite. Did hearing the song remind me to watch the documentary? Curtis would say yes.

Published by jamesofwalsh

My past blogs haunt the internet like ghost ships on a digital sea.

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