R ED N OSE E DITION
The Ashbourner is a written publication containing news and information usually printed twice a month. Our newspaper often features articles on politics, art/entertainment, society, sports, and personal views. The views expressed in this publication may not necessarily be the views held by Ashbourne College. We would appreciate if you could donate 50p for this issue of the paper. All proceeds go to Comic Relief. Ashbourne College 17 Old Court Place, Kensington Tel: +44 (0) 20 7937 3858 Fax: +44 (0) 20 7937 2207
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CONTENTS OF THIS ISSUE Contents CHANGE...? OH YES WE CAN NOW! ..................................................................... 3 ‘JE’ AFRICAN RESTAURANT GRILL .......................................................................... 5 BOOK REVIEW: ERAGON ...................................................................................... 7 TIME TO END THE TORTURE .................................................................................. 9 LITTLE LEAVEN ................................................................................................. 11 RACISM ‐ THE INCESSANT QUARREL..................................................................... 12 FIRE ............................................................................................................... 14 ‘IT’ ................................................................................................................ 15 MATTERING .................................................................................................... 16 NEW .............................................................................................................. 17 THE SOCIAL DISTRACTION!................................................................................. 20 ALBUM REVUE: THE FAME BY LADY GAGA ............................................................ 22 MADRID ......................................................................................................... 24 SPANISH DELIGHTS ........................................................................................... 26 PREZZO – NEAR COLLEGE ................................................................................... 27 STRESSFUL TIMES.... ......................................................................................... 28 RELIGION, IT’S A MUGS GAME… .......................................................................... 30 THE RESIDUE OF YOU ........................................................................................ 32 THAT GAP… .................................................................................................... 33 CREDITS .......................................................................................................... 33 Page | 2
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CHANGE...? OH YES B WE CAN NOW! arack Hussein Obama stepped up to the podium on the west front of the capital on Tuesday 20th January and took the oath into office by placing his left hand on the bible, the same used by Abraham Lincoln (1861‐1865) when Figure 1: Barack Hussein Obama becoming the 16th President of the United States, (28 men on Obama follows the tradition to become at last the 44th President of the United States). His journey seems to have been a long one, I remember Obama all the way back in the start of the primaries, yet when his slogan of change came out it seemed that change would come into not only America, but the whole world. At 12.05pm in Washington, the young 47‐year‐old son of a Kenyan origin father and a white mother with English and Irish decent became the Commander in Chief. The service was somewhat informal, which seemed to make it even more special. While watching the live coverage, the thought was still going through my mind, as I’m sure it was in many others; was this actually happening? An African American standing in front of the capital taking the oath into presidency! The answer was beyond my eyes, who would have foreseen an African American moving into the White House which was built by his ancestors through slavery. Having been sworn in to a tricky start (forgetting three lines of the oath) Obama gave what seemed to me to be a reassuring speech. The speech was realistic and did not give an optimistic nor pessimistic image of America, he Page | 3
A S H B O U R N E N E W S P A P E R told the truth, about the financial crisis, war, and terrorism, and swore to the American people and the world that he will fix the problems and that time will be the best possible solution. Obama yet again showed his great oratory skills on this day as he did when he won the race for the White House month’s back. Inaugural speeches are known to be flowery and pretentious, idealistic and sometimes triumphant. Yet Obama had a share of soaring language, as one would expect from one of the best‐known orators in the world. But in almost every other respect it was different. It was pragmatic and real. “On this day we gather because we have chosen hope over fear; unity of purpose over conflict and discord. On this day, we come to proclaim an end to the petty grievances and false promises, the recriminations and worn‐out dogmas that for far too long have strangled our politics. To all the other people and governments who are watching today, from the grandest capitals to the small village where my father was born; know that America is a friend of each nation and every man, woman, and child who seeks a future of peace and dignity, and that we are ready to lead once more” We can already see how inspirational Obama can be and this speech shows it, not only does he reach out to those close to him in America, but he also he looks upon those who are at the other side of the globe in poverty. A section of the speech stood out to me which amazed me as it occurred to me that this man was someone unique and he does mean peace and no harm “to those who cling on to power through corruption and deceit and silencing of dissent, know that you are on the wrong side of history; but that we will extend a hand if you are willing to unclench your fist”. His speech overall was successful, despite our English reported on BBC1 in America calling it ‘Dull’ shows he inability to see what Obama was talking about. In his speech he did not talk about the great economy because there isn’t one, he did not give people confidence, when he knew that what they Page | 4
A S H B O U R N E N E W S P A P E R wanted was help to recover the financial damage unlike Hoover (1929‐ 1933) Obama gave the people what they wanted hope and change, as he said from the start “Yes we can! And change will come to America”. And on January 20th 2009 a change had come, history had been made. Article by Sefer Mani
‘JE’ AFRICAN E RESTAURANT GRILL Ver had the urge for great African food? No? Well after one meal here, you will. ‘Je’ is an African Grill Restaurant located in Kilburn. It specialises mainly in Nigerian food, so if you haven’t heard of Egusi, Ogbono or Pounded Yams before, now is the best time to find out. This cosy little restaurant has recently been voted the ‘Best Themed Restaurant 2008’ by the Kilburn Times and quite rightly so. All the prices are decent enough to fit within a typical Figure 2: ‘Je’ African Grill Restaurant student budget (read: miniscule). Dinner for my friend Diego and I consisted of Sizzling King Prawns served in light marinade of lemons and herbs and also the Grilled Chicken Wings; enough of a starter for 2. For the main course I tried the Pan‐Fried Haddock topped with sautéed peppers, onions, and chilli. Quite spicy (in both ways) and on the side I was recommended some ‘Moi‐Moi’ bean cakes with egg and chunky beef filling. And last but certainly not least, the essential Fried Plantain, all washed down with some of Nigeria’s finest STAR Beer. Page | 5
A S H B O U R N E N E W S P A P E R In the end, bellies stuffed, we left with a reasonable £12 bill for my half (I’d bring more money just in case though, who knows, you might order seconds). For even better value, head down there on Fridays where there’s a Jazz Night and upon entry, they’ll give you a FREE cocktail. That’s right fellow students, free. And if jazz isn’t up your street, then just pop out after and within 3 minutes walking distance there’s the ‘Luminaire’ and also ‘the Good Ship’, if you’re in the mood for a bit of indie rock. Great DJ’s at ‘Power’s Bar’ too. All in all, a fantastic little find, great staff, and delicious food and what’s more, good value for money. You won’t regret it. Nearest tube: Kilburn, Jubilee Line. *Don’t get it mixed up with Kilburn Park or Kilburn High Road. Buses: 16, 32, 189, 316, and the 332. It is literally a stone’s throw away from the Tricycle Cinema. If a bit confuzzled, ask a good citizen from the charming kingdom of ‘Kill’ and ‘Burn’. For more info call 02073728884 or go to www.jerestaurant.co.uk. By Ariguunt Page | 6
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BOOK REVIEW: ERAGON
ince Harry Porter, as you all know, arguably, the most successful fantasy story has been the one and only Eragon. To all readers, have you, or have you not, graced your curious eyes over the crammed pages of the book? Have you, or have you not, seen the beauty of such a fantastic story? If you have, good, but if you have not, you have undoubtedly wasted a part of your life. Just let me, another common reader and lover of books, recommend you this, the newly published Brisingr, the third book of Eragon is definitely worth it. Figure 3: Eragon written by Christopher Paolini
Eragon, a farmer, with a grace of the Rider’s blood in his veins, had the luck of awaking the most magnificent dragon of all, the almighty Saphira, the last of the dragons… His adventures had thus begun, and on his way to defeating the tyrannical King, Galbatorix, of the kingdom, he gradually grew up to become a hero and hence bring about the greatest tale of the land of all. What you look for in a book, adventure, action, murder, romance, and a wonderfully twisting plot, all are present. If you haven’t read the first and second part of the story, spend a little time away from the real world and bury yourself in this beautiful fantasy. You will not regret it. The adventures of such a young, impulsive yet much so responsible dragon rider, whom you might find very much similar to yourselves, will, for sure, capture you in such a way that you might not put the book down until you have finished it. Let your caged imagination fly with the sapphire coloured dragon for once, and you might find yourself engrossed. Page | 7
A S H B O U R N E N E W S P A P E R In this third part, the presence of the great sword Brisingr will, surely, capture you. It would be as well if you would learn much about the art of making swords from the Japanese, the very source from which the author has learnt. It is promised to be an exceedingly exciting procedure to come to know. A bit of extraordinary knowledge will, perhaps, be more useful to you than you would have thought… And such is only one little point that makes Brisingr the great book it is, while there are many more for you to discover. Just for a little more regard, the elf, the noble warrior with a smile that shamed the fairest of flowers, Arya the Royal Princess, would just be a grace to your imagination. Where, then, could you hope to find such romance engraved in the most violent of battles? And where can you see such beauty holding swords and fighting, and, just to assure you, defeating a Shade of terrible spirits? Find out for yourselves if my words are true, but I fancy you would not remember this little recommendation at all when you have picked the book and started to read. See if I am right.
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TIME TO END THE TORTURE
ou have been complicit in the torture of at least three generations of a family, one particular family, in your lifetime. If you are a British citizen, this is a given. The matriarch has been emotionally stunted and could not ever make any real friends, her son has an egotistical complex despite his incredible stupidity and incompetence and his sons have had their private lives ruined, one of the worst examples being when millions went to gawp at them at their mother’s funeral, to see them cry. And you have been a direct part of it. Figure 4: UK Royal Coat of Name of the family? The Royal Family! Arms The best argument for republicanism is the total incompatibility of the monarchy with the 21st century. The most obvious example of this is the symbolism the family has with an aristocracy that died years ago, of a monarchy that bans Catholics or those who marry Catholics, in a country where practising Catholics now outnumber Protestants. There is also the advantage given to males in the line of succession that are incompatible with gender equality. However, it is the development of rolling media coverage that will provoke the next British revolution. The Sun, despite its right‐wing leanings, has been undermining the monarchy for years. If you were hounded by the press round the clock, you probably would yearn to be a private citizen. The man who will highlight this publically one day, and bring down the monarchy in the process, will not be a republican like Tony Benn or Jonathan Freedland, it will be HRH Prince William. William yearns to live a privately life, but his sexuality, his beliefs, or anything involving his personal life has been screened for every unhappy year of his life. The authoritarianism of a monarchy is no longer imposed on the monarch’s subjects, but on the monarch themselves. William, in a move unnoticed in 1998, did not take the position of Prince of Wales which he was supposed to. A year before, his mother had told Jennie Bond just before she died, that William had told her she was “very lucky” to be giving up the title of Her Royal Highness. He was the one who saw the pain his mother went through in the spiral that led to
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A S H B O U R N E N E W S P A P E R her death in a Paris car tunnel, in which she had prophetically warned the press about, “My boys are urging me to leave the country. They say it’s the only way”. When he was 18, playing a cricket game for his school, the scorer did not know who he was and when the other players told him it was William Windsor, this person profusely apologised: William instead, burst into tears saying “Thank you, thank you! You don’t know what that just meant to me.” If and when he abdicates from the line of succession, it is probable his Prince Phillip‐esque brother will also feel no need to stay in line to the throne. The crown would then pass to Prince Andrew, but wouldn’t most people then reasonably agree that the monarchy was no longer tenable? Even a republican like me cannot help but greatly respect Elizabeth Windsor, or the Queen as her torturers (you) knows her. But that is not enough to save the monarchy. In reality, her constitutional role is increasingly limited, in exchange for more sadistic torture from the British people. Her mother chanted at her when she was two, for hours, saying “We are not normal. We are not normal.” Her father, a stuttering nervous wreck, was forced on to the monarchy by the abdication of his Nazi brother, his stammer got worse with his role, to the point that advisers thought he was suffering from a learning disorder. The Queen was banned from going to school, so she found it “very difficult” to make friends, according to her nanny. Her happiest days, after being abandoned for six months in infancy by her parents and being forced to extinguish any signs of human emotion, were in Malta with Prince Phillip between 1946‐1951, according to her friends Patricia Mountbatten and Lady Kendall, where she was simply the wife of a naval officer and could live a normal life. The following year, this was ripped apart as she ascended to the throne. The sycophancy poured on Charles, an exceedingly stupid man, is breath taking. He managed just 2 A‐levels, two C’s after one‐on‐one tuition at Eton for 7 years. Nonetheless, he went to Oxbridge because of who his mother was, barely scraping a 2:2 (again, after being educated one‐on‐one), then seeking a naval career (where he again received one‐on‐one training), where he couldn’t successfully navigate the ships. If that had been anyone else, they would have been court‐martialled. His life has been ruined by the monarchy on a level not seen since Princess Margaret’s downfall. But he believes he is intelligent, because of our sycophancy which will provoke a massive constitutional crisis if he accedes to the throne. An ex‐girlfriend has described this: "He lives in an isolation ward of flattery. He goes to Hollywood and is told he's handsome. He swaps jokes with a comic genius like Peter Sellers, and they fall down laughing." If he was simply stupid and was to have no political role, these facts would be less important. But he has dangerous views infected by quackery. He believes in
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A S H B O U R N E N E W S P A P E R pre‐capitalism, feudalism, which essentially boils down to his hatred of anything modern, whether GM foods or medicine, the greatest achievement of civilisation. He intends to be a “political king”, so these views are no longer private. He has already played a significant role in the political process: he has managed to get ridiculous alternative “medicines” to be backed up with £200 million of NHS cash. He has also delayed the abolition of farm subsidies, which stop Africa from becoming the world’s breadbasket, because he gets a £300 million check by “owning” the Cornwall Duchy. The sycophancy poured on Charles also led to the downwards spiral of Diana, as a sycophant can never have a reciprocal loving relationship. But he was also emotionally stunted as his first day at school was ruined by screaming photographers shouting his name. His father, was very cruel to him when he was younger, who according to his biographer, “seemed intent not merely on correcting the Prince but mocking him as well, so that he seemed to be foolish and tongue‐tied in front of friends as well as family. To their distress and embarrassment, the small boy was frequently brought to tears”. Charles, like his mother, never had any real friends and had his first words, his first drink or any other “significant” events intensely covered by the media. Perhaps some domestic privacy laws could stop the media market from destroying the monarchy? I support such laws to stop inane trivia about politicians from being discussed in papers. But the Windsors are worldwide renowned. Foreign media has a financial motive to cover their every move. The collapse of our monarchy is inevitable. We will end up having a President of Britain, though probably a ceremonial president. If you love the Windsors, you should put down your torture weapons, and support the abolition of the monarchy. By Josh Kitto
LITTLE LEAVEN The whole process worked like magic and it was really amazing. I was in the baker’s factory as I saw a large limp of dough. The baker added just a little quantity of yeast and after a while the dough rose filling the big container it Page | 11
A S H B O U R N E N E W S P A P E R was in. surprising! A little drop of ink changes the colour of a glass of clean water; a little spark of fire burns up the whole estate; a little seed of bitterness causes riot that sets the whole school ablaze; and a little carelessness and folly could mar the spiritual and academic progress of an industrious student. Please, stop before it develops into a serious problem. That little thing you think doesn’t matter might turn out to be a serious hindrance on your way to success. Do you know that your life is promising? Such a precious life should not be allowed to be spoilt by a "little leaven". Conduct a survey of the "little things" that pose temptations to you and stand to avoid them from today .THE LITTLE ANGER, LITTLE JESTING. By Ozioma Ukachukwu [ZIMA]
RACISM ‐ THE INCESSANT QUARREL By Osasu Igodan There was a dog And there was a man. The dog was as white as snow The man was as black as coal. Neither saw the other as different They were inseparable Until that inauspicious day… Man: ‘Why dog, you’re looking very pale today’ Dog: ‘Oh…well pale isn’t the word I’d use man. You’re looking rather ashy yourself’ said dog Man: ‘I am not ashy!’ Dog: ‘No. that’s not it. I meant to say dirty, black…almost akin to that
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A S H B O U R N E N E W S P A P E R pot on the stove there.’ Man: ‘What is this you say dog?’ Well…well you might as well know that…that you, you… Dog: ‘Speak up man!’ Man: ‘YOU ARE WHITE!’ Dog: Oh. That I know. You are black and dirty and I am white and clean. I am pure, spotless and clean like my bleached shirt hanging on the wire over there. Man: Ha! You are bleached! Contaminated! Dog: ‘…said the black, dirty pot. I am peace. I am light. You are evil. You are dark. You represent all things bad. You are blackmail. You are black sheep. Man: Why, you…! Dog: What is it you mutter man? Say something in your defence if you think I do not speak the truth. Man: Well, I’d rather be a strong, black pot than a bleached flimsy shirt! Dog: You speak without much thought I observe Man: You insult me! Man: Quiet! I have heard your point. Now let me destroy your argument. Look at my white shirt soaking up the warm sun, the cool breeze in its sleeves. It seems relaxed, wouldn’t you agree? Dog: It is a shirt. It has no life. It has no choice but to let the breeze blow it. You speak like a mad man. Man: I speak with metaphors, but I do not expect you to understand. Dog: (muttering) The mad man regards the sane as mad. Man: that is besides my point. Now, look at your pot. It is grimy, its contents gooey and murky, from it emanates an odour so…so foul and worst of all it burns! The fire scars it. It is in hell, you have to agree. Man: You will eat nothing of my food. Your shirt is not relaxed, it hangs
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A S H B O U R N E N E W S P A P E R unable to deliver its self from its suicide like you are unable to see your lunacy. My pot is seated. You hear me? SEATED, and that burning does it good! Try hanging my pot. It will bring the wire down, but that which strengthens my pot will only consume your WHITE shirt! Dog: You may say all that you wish. I wonder why I listen to you. You speak nonsense. You do not know even of metaphors. It is simple. I am white and I am clean, and therefore better than you grimy illiterate! The next day, they had the same argument. This time the other had the last sensible word And the story continues.
FIRE By Osasu Igodan I used to wonder where the fire had gone How it had gone Where it had gone and if it would ever burn again I wastefully wondered away my time Time I could have used to gather old newspaper bits Time I could have used to rub sticks together Time I could have used to borrow a lighter or find a match Time I could have used to rekindle the frames Instead I sat and pondered Thinking can be the devil if you choose it to be I spent my time thinking and then… Refusing to think how I could find this fire and bring it back
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A S H B O U R N E N E W S P A P E R I waited for arson I forgot that arson’s way was to surprise And so it happened that as I opened my eyes I was consumed by my fire It trailed everywhere Arson had poured the oil all over me Then ARSON had screamed! And then it came And then I burned I am not yet healed I am living the aftermaths of a fire. The fire is in me. The fire is me.
‘IT’ By Osasu Igodan We’re too busy talking about sexism And how our lexicon and society is asymmetric That we forget about ‘it’ We treat ‘it’ like it’s nothing. Yet without ‘it’, we would be nothing. ‘It’ is an essential part of our speech, Of our lives. Agreeably, ‘it’ is a bit ambiguous,
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A S H B O U R N E N E W S P A P E R But ambiguity is necessary on many an occasion. Without ‘it’ , How could you shout out “Did you do ‘it’?’ on a crowded train and not worry about everyone else knowing what you were talking about? How could you sitting on the train beside the two noisy teenage girls pretend you didn’t understand what they were talking about if not for the ambiguity of ‘it’? ‘It’ is everything. Show ‘it’ some more kindness ‘It’ is your dog ‘It’ is your illness ‘It’ is how you’re feeling ‘It’ is more than just a pronoun And when you’re dead and buried, ‘It’ is what you will be.
MATTERING By Osasu Igodan When you don’t even want to be referred to as harmless, When you refuse to be pushed aside as ordinary, When you wish your body would suddenly shake and convulse you into recognition, When you get melancholic in states of absolute normalcy and calm, You want to matter.
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A S H B O U R N E N E W S P A P E R When there is a craving for difference and significance for acknowledgement and appreciation When there is toiling for this ultimate purpose There is a want for mattering We will not live Admittedly, we might exist, But we will not live Not really If we weren’t shown, If we didn’t know, That we mattered. Isn’t that what love is all about? Mattering We do things because somehow we Or at least somebody Thinks that we matter. Life is Mattering.
NEW By Osasu Igodan You are not special.
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A S H B O U R N E N E W S P A P E R You are a mere notebook in which I put down my random and sometimes very upsetting thoughts. You should take pride in being of use, But pray do not delude yourself into thinking that you are my one and only.
Do fear! You will soon be abandoned I might sometimes express certain feelings to you Know now that I might not always mean what I write. Page | 18
A S H B O U R N E N E W S P A P E R Blame my very frequent moments of insanity, ‘the giddiness’ or ‘the sugar rush’ Or perhaps the softness of your leaves Or you’re attractive colouring.
Me and you are not ’me and you’ We are not ’we’ Do not tell me that I ever said I loved you. You are not special. Page | 19
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THE SOCIAL DISTRACTION! Whether you check it fifty times a day, have it but rarely go on it, don’t have an account on general principle or merely use it to swap pictures with your mates, Facebook is inescapable these days. Unless you have the will power to avoid, this is virtually impossible. And for generalisation sake let’s just ignore the people who live under rocks and do not have over 2 billion virtual friends who one they have never spoke to and two never met? Social networking sites are a fairly recent phenomenon whereby you create a profile, post personal information and photos, and keep in touch with people and spend hours playing games such as “your ideal Friday night” and get matches like “two peas in a pod” “Nothing here” etc. Its competitor, Myspace, the previous king of such sites is in a way going downhill as Facebook has stepped up and earned the crown. Myspace isn’t really my cup of tea, as it is more of a customisable platform than Facebook, allowing users to design and implement their own mental schemes, which offers more network experience. It’s a handy site for those musical artists to seek out potential listeners (and vice versa), and it has proven to be extremely effective as it provided new acts such as Lily Allen. The question I ask myself when I see people on Facebook are how many of them have I met. Having more than 500 friends, I say all. Yet when I speak to someone in the chat, box they reply to me with who are you anyway? When it was them who added me anyway! What a joke ha‐ha. And the most hilarious thing you can do on Facebook is tag a friend in the most awful photograph of them! And comment on their status, which is typically (NAME: is thinking Friday night going to be gooood!). Right, I’m off to see if anyone has written on my wall, made any cheeky messages on my photos or if I have a friend to add! Oh and if you don’t Page | 20
A S H B O U R N E N E W S P A P E R know me (which is hardly unlikely LOL) you can simply Google my name and it will direct you to my Facebook account, how cool is that, feeling famous already! Online Shopping Now I’m sure almost all of you reading this have heard of ASOS! Well I wanted to put in a couple of things for the boys, seeing as every issue is a dominated with a female fashion page, and yet they call us sexist. Pft! This Jumper by Ted Baker Is amazing, went and bought it myself! £64 got it for £30, God don’t we just love the Jan Sales! This is also smart and casual, and you don’t have to get up in the morning thinking ah! What to be to toady? By full circle £84 and the material is amazing! Not the nasty itchy ones we get nowadays! Not really a fan of the skinny jeans, so I have to stick to the baggy style, not to baggy so I look like Busta rhymes, like these ASOS Japanese £54.00. THE ONES AND ONLY VANS! £30‐£40. They are good looking hats have made a comeback, and I personally think their useful when you want to look at bit casual, and are having a Bad hair day! £11 ASOS! And a little something for our teachers, what do you think of this fine suit? Pretty nice eh! I got the same one in doors! Well sort of (different retailer) and it’s affordable, guess how much? £78.50 whole Set! Bring some colour into your classroom, blind student by your presence, and it’s not going to be your teaching that keeps them awake! (No offence) but this shirt is amazingly bright! And it could be the answer to increasing those grades. £65.00 (Simon carter rainbow stripe), no one said everything was going to be cheap and cheerful. Page | 21
A S H B O U R N E N E W S P A P E R In addition, brighten the classroom up with this tie, nice colour don’t you think? (Peckham rye Metallic tie £44.50) Trench coats are now in; then again they haven’t been out? £195!
ALBUM REVUE: THE FAME BY LADY GAGA In a world of celebrity obsession, body‐image overload and music dominated by superficial lyrics about money, cars and girls, Lady Gaga (a.k.a. Stefani Germanotta) has managed to recapture all of those themes and turn them into an original and catchy first album. Released Oct. 28 on Inters cope Records, "The Fame" plays off the real American way of music which can sometimes be very repetitive. However, Lady Gaga manages to update its superficiality in a unique way. It would be simple and understandable to dismiss Lady Gaga as no different as every other 22‐year‐old pop princess who makes a few catchy, club hits. But soon after the summer release of "Just Dance," the single that has been burning up the pop billboards for months, Lady Gaga has drawn a cult following. Dressed head to toe in a hooded cat‐woman spandex body suit, four‐inch heels and bleached‐blonde hair, her electronic beats and glamorous image have everyone from the gay community to the mainstream calling her "fabulous." "Just Dance" is reason alone to purchase the album; she captures the mood and imagery of a night on the town, chemically infused and wildly altered. "Wish I could shut my playboy mouth/ How'd I turn my shirt inside out/ Control your poison babe," and "What's the name of this club?/ I can't remember but it's alright/ Just dance," are perfect examples of a Lady Gaga experience. Page | 22
A S H B O U R N E N E W S P A P E R An already well‐established DJ in her own right, her apparent preference to techno beats and heavy‐hitting synthesizers makes "The Fame" unique with a dark, futuristic vibe. Each track is anecdotal, and while listening, it's easy to imagine and fantasize each of the scenarios she sings. Her music is infectious even if the majority of her lyrics are about the glittery lifestyles of the rich and famous. Nearly every track has sexual metaphors; "I want to take a ride on your disco stick," on "LOVE GAMES," is a pretty obvious example. Lady Gaga constantly promotes her sexual identity, presenting herself as a glamorous diva with a diamond‐studded microphone who sings through plump, shiny, glossy lips. My favorite tune on this spectacular creation, written by the glamorous gal herself, has to be “POKER FACE”. The lyrics have real meaning and most girls can understand what she means when she sings, ‘he can’t read my poker face!’ It’s as if she speaks for all the females of us out there, giving us all the strength to teach these men a lesson. This is the next track to be realized from the album entering at 24 in the charts. She puts other artists in her genre to shame; she can actually sing live and write music, unlike Britney Spears. She understands the hipster revolution more than Gwen Stefani, and combines her influences of Madonna and Cyndi Lauper to create an updated cult following. Lady Gaga is what pop music needs: an intelligent, observant, powerful woman. She understands and connects with her audience's desire for intensely synthesized, heart‐thumping, fist‐pumping music."The Fame" is a well‐crafted first album for Lady Gaga. She follows through with the "Just Dance," techno‐club vibe, and also promotes her soulful, melodic alter ego that will eventually lead her to a long, solid career. By Katharine Lea‐Robbins Page | 23
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MADRID A brief collection of experience we gain in Madrid, guys: ‐ The flea market: it’s great, if you know what you’re looking for. Just watch out for your wallet and backpack, they may got nicked the split second you take your eyes off them. And then you are in trouble. Remember, do not wear your backpack on your back, however ridiculous that may sound to you, because professional pick pockets can open your bag and take the wallet that you have methodically hid at the bottom of it, i.e. very deep and close to your own back, without you having any suspicion at all. ‐ Restaurant: There are loads of nice places to eat, without being too expensive at all. But then, money pays you know, so if just sometimes give yourselves a treat, you may find a restaurant with Flamenco dancing or opera performed by professionals. And it’s worth it, too, since what do you come to Spain for if you don’t see the Flamenco? Trust me, you’ll love it, and well, there’s always the great Lee Kirby to ask for his opinion on perceiving the dance. His particularly sensitive perception of the dance is something we have just witnessed on this trip, so perhaps it’s a good idea for you to see the dance yourself. ‐ The Royal Palace: Oh yes, if you haven’t seen it, you have missed to see one of the greatest buildings in the world. For more information of the royal family that dwelled the palace, you may ask Mr. James Wykes, I’m sure he can tell you all that you want, and well, in some cases he might offer to break the glass to steal a Stradivarius violin for you (though you’ll know the results right then). But honestly, if anything, it’s worth it to come to Madrid to see the wealth of the most powerful family in all Europe through their last palace, and perhaps buy a souvenir back?
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A S H B O U R N E N E W S P A P E R ‐ The architecture: thinking of studying architecture? Interested in old European styles? Take a walk around, you’ll have to shoot a fair number of photos before you can get back. ‐ The Real Madrid Stadium: Yessssssssssss, it’s the stadium of the Real Madrid Football club! You can come in just for 12 euro and take as many photos as you want. You can sit like a real fan in a real match in the real seats for vips and enjoy the feeling of simply being inside something so great. You can see all the cups and medals of the club, and the greatest thing of all is that you can buy as many souvenirs as you want in the shop, balls, caps, t‐shirts, you name them, they have them all in all sizes and forms. ‐ The museums: They are great places, really they are! If you are into abstract art, i.e something that looks like Picasso, you can pay a visit to the National Museum. There, you can see all the abstract arts of all the most famous artists in the world, including the most important art work of the 20th century, the Guernica of Pablo Picasso. Similarly, Museo del Prado is the Louvre of Spain, where you can spend days gazing longingly at artworks without feeling bored. Again, see James for his opinions, you’ll be amazed at how differently you will see the pictures after listening to him talking about them. And again, the shops are amazing, so check them out if you go to Madrid eh? ‐ The bars: Oy oy, don’t get me wrong, I mean the traditional bars. They are worthing seeing, for experience if anything. The warm atmosphere, a cool glass of sangria, and the sound of Spanish traditional music, you’ll love them. Like I said, if you don’t get drunk, the bars are a part of Spanish culture that is a must for tourists. (And I emphasize DO NOT get drunk!!! The streets are dangerous sometimes, you see)
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A S H B O U R N E N E W S P A P E R And there are loads and loads of other things you can see when coming to Madrid. Book a trip now, and tell me something I have not introduced you when you come back to the cold and foggy London! Enjoy guys!
The half‐term break came and went like a breeze, some have celebrated the holidays by stepping back and enjoying life at a slower pace , others effortlessly joined friends and raided shopping malls and cinemas to mark the glorious vacation. A number of enthusiastic ashbourners went a step further and travelled to Spain in order to learn a little culture, bathe in the sun and of course.....cheer their heads off in the stadium! But that wasn’t the case with me. Don’t get me wrong as I too travelled to Spain except in a totally parallel course, always close but never crossing paths with the school squadron. Firstly, I paid a small visit to the neighbouring town of Segovia – an hour’s drive by car‐ from Madrid .Blessed with amazing scenery such as snow capped mountains and green meadows, rich in history as it harbours the notorious AlCazar where Queen Elizabith and King Ferdenand unified their armies before marching down into Muslim Andalusia .Oh and one could not forget the double aqueduct bridge of Segovia. It is the most famous Roman monument in the area. Returning to Madrid, it’s worthy to eat at the Hard Rock Cafe right in the heart of the city. Order Hard Rock’s signature Beef Burger Special with a plate of Nachos and fries on the side .Experience legends like the beatles, The who, Deep purple, The rolling stones and many more. If you’re into classic music, then head towards La favorita (Covarrubias 25, Madrid) . You will not only have a wonderful feast but will also enjoy waiters as they sing Carmen, Figaro, and Rigoletto to name a few. Since you are in Madrid, make sure you drop by El Corte Ingles and grab you a fancy set of stylish clothes and slick garments .The branch in Serrano probably has a larger collection than the rest. Obviously, the value for money here is unmatched and you ought to have a nice wardrobe worth of clothes for less than 500 euro (In your face Marks and Spencer). Alas, the time has come where I bid Madrid farewell .One or two hours till my flight with Iberia shows on the departure board. My eyes wander in the colourful Barajas Airport –an engineering feat and marvel‐.A dream is nearing its end. Page | 26
A S H B O U R N E N E W S P A P E R Only this one left a sweet sweet aftertaste long after I reached Londres. Adios Amigos. Hasta pronto!
PREZZO – NEAR COLLEGE This is very much an afterthought, as I haven’t been to Prezzo for ages, and that time was the last time. This is more of a warning than a review, of course things may have changed and improved; find out for yourself if you dare, but I warned you!!! So when you go out for a meal (especially during lunch time at college) the three most important things you look for in a restaurant is the quality of the food, time efficiency and service. So let’s start with the least of the worst: The food wasn’t all that bad, at best it was tasty, at worst sort of bland, good portion size but still a little overpriced for dishes that are pants easy to make, and probably as cheap to make also. However, the fact that we had ten minutes in which we had to complete the meal was the more pressing issue. I have been to prezzo two or three times, returning under the assumption that I caught it on a bad day, but each and every time they cease to amaze us with their incompetence! On my last visit I had arrived there fairly early, maybe 5 or 10 minutes after finishing my lesson. Yet by 13:50 maybe two thirds of the table had just gotten their meals, and the rest were impatiently waiting. Their patience, mine included, was not being aided by the attitude of the staff who seemed to be loitering around the place, rather than being of any actual use. When someone had problems with their order, they were addressed with a cold tone of apathy: the perfect recipe for someone working in jobs that require constant public communication and satisfaction. So if you are looking for a place to feel unwelcome in, a place that affectionately encourages acid indigestion, and that instigates the panic of ‘oh bugger, I’m gonna be late!’ then Prezzo is the place for you. Page | 27
A S H B O U R N E N E W S P A P E R (Obviously I don’t speak for every Prezzo in existence, although I wouldn’t be surprised...)
STRESSFUL TIMES.... All of us are going through the same painful process. Sitting in front of the computer, our minds are just about as blank as the screens. Trying desperately to focus on that one of piece of work that MUST be in tomorrow, and the harder you try, the more futile it seems. Then this numb misery seems to fan itself out, diminishing the vibrancy in all aspects of our lives; we can’t focus when we try to work, yet when we’re not working, all we can think about is that deadline. Let me paint an image (humour me with your imagination, coz it’s a bit kooky) So you’re walking down the street, going to college let’s say and everything’s in black and white, everything that surrounds is dullified by the mental blockage clogging up your mind. And you have on your head, tapping incessantly, the ‘exam’ bird. This relentless headache is a reminder of the little precious time you have left till you have to sit in a hall for a few hours and pave the path of your future; it picks at your head like the tick of a grandfather clock, on and on until the sounds is reverberating inside the walls of your skull. In addition to this irritating little pest is the fact that you must now walk into your classroom and tell your teacher that you haven’t been able to finish that piece of work that was due today, and you must face that bitter look of combined disappointment and contempt which burns through you like a sharp red laser, or better yet, that oozy acid which sizzles through thick metals in bond‐esque films. And the thought of this had induced a stuffy feeling, like you are in the thickest woolliest jumper you’ve ever seen, lying on a beach (probably grotty) but humid, and you want to puke your guts up (something fishy, which you’d have rather not eaten in the first place) Page | 28
A S H B O U R N E N E W S P A P E R The bird and the jumper (and several other things you seem to forget until they remember themselves at the most inconvenient times) combine to create a little something I think of as the panic flush: its when a moment of utter fear just washes over you and the evaporating sweat makes it even harder to breathe. Now obviously all this panic and drama make it very difficult to produce anything of value, and the rest of your life is going down the plughole, the monotone one. And it is at these moments of sheer desperation when I find its best to turn to things that were created for inspiration (kind‐of) There is a wealth of material out there just waiting to open your eyes, allowing you to see the world in ways you’d have never thought of. Now all this may seem like an exaggeration, but everybody has a favourite film, band/artist, book, play etc... And most of the time the reason that they are so appreciated by the person, is because they connected with it on some level; it moved them. It is a good idea to expand your interests, look in places you’d never have considered, and there you can find inspiration, the love that is put into the creation of these things will remind you of the passion you have for your subject ( after all, you chose it!) I’ll share with you a few that I found deeply touching, and that certainly had a cathartic, refreshing element. Well when it comes to films ‘Garden State’ is astonishing. Now, it isn’t a big blockbuster hit, but it is beautifully composed. I found the film to be very microcosmic, reflecting the behavior of many people in modernized society, both the generic and eccentric. What I found most resonant was the way in which the protagonist was struggling to escape from a life that has been numbed since a young age due to prescription medication ( I won’t give it away) and he was desperate to feel, whether it be pain or love, he wanted to feel his emotions in all their acute sharpness, while conversely a secondary character was continuously drinking and taking drugs in order to escape from the failure in his own life. This film challenges the escapism that is prevalent in these times, and motivates you to love and appreciate the complexity and beauty of life. Just like this film, there are many lines in songs, obscure and Page | 29
A S H B O U R N E N E W S P A P E R popular, which occasionally make you turn your head and listen just that bit closely. While we’re kind‐of ish on the topic of life, a line from MGMT’s Kids comes to mind: ‘The water is warm, but it’s sending me shivers’. Now I probably don’t have a clue as to its real meaning, but every time I hear it serves as a reminder, or even a warning, of living a ‘lukewarm’ life. So I shall leave you with this idea: challenge yourself, push your limits, open your mind, enjoy everything you do, whether it’s an essay or going clubbing, enjoy it. (Then the bird will fly away)
RELIGION, IT’S A MUGS GAME… From the title alone I’m sure you can all guess that I am not a religious person, but nor do I castigate my friends that are religious for their beliefs. I find it fascinating how people can devote their entire lives to an ethereal being who may or may not be real. My reasons for not being fond of religion are as follows. Wherever God’s name is spoken or used to teach, bloodshed inevitably follows. How many wars have been fought in the name of the almighty? How many millions and millions of people have perished for their God, whether it is the Christian idea of God or Allah or indeed any type of religious figure? And yet even with this in mind people continue to believe and continue to join organized religions because let’s face it, it’s a comfort blanket. Since the middle ages people have used God to explain things that are inexplicable such as deformed people, seemingly magical events such as premonition or ‘miracles’. People join religions to find meaning or to find like‐minded people. People pledge themselves to God so as to feel safe and protected as though an all seeing eye watches their every move (this is true, but its name is the Government and its game is surveillance ‘for our safety’ – yeah right. But this is a different topic for another time) and people then live by the philosophies of their religion, by laws laid down by someone. What am I getting at here well many things but I will keep my more controversial views to myself. Control, religion is nothing more than a means of mass control, mind control, intent control. Strictly religious families do not govern themselves, they are governed by a being whose existence has not been proved and will never be proved. I just Page | 30
A S H B O U R N E N E W S P A P E R find it sad that people are bent to someone else’s will and that they CHOSE this, it saddens me to see people that are fanatical about religion as it removes your ability to think or to do something without thinking about how it can or will affect your religious beliefs. I am in no way saying religion does not have benefit but I believe it to be an extremely flawed premise perpetuated by a society fuelled by fear and paranoia, you can’t meet someone’s eye on the tube, you walk with your head pointed at the earth so as not to offend someone with a ‘dodgy look’. People find faith in god and I envy them, I do, but I find it impossible to believe in something when there is no proof and with the advancement of science it is highly likely that God will be disproved or at least sidelined by advanced theories that can explain things that normally only a reference to God could. So, follow religion if you choose, I will never disrespect you or anyone else for it, but I will tell you, have not just faith in God, but faith in yourself and your own strength, because as so many poor children in conflict bound countries throughout the world have discovered, God is not always there for you. ‘nuff said. By Calum F Witney
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THE RESIDUE OF YOU Pretty little ostentatious boy: bearer of my insecurity. I wish you were perfect; all that you could be. You are not. Yet have a hold over me still. Your dark eyes have penetrated my mind and linger, Once, glittering the depths of the sea, Self‐deprecation has swept away the fire in those jewels, but the gaudy mouth remains. Your melody cuts me like a knife That deep, soft tone captures spite and sets a flame in my heart. Those words shatter my certainty, thrust deep into thoughts no longer resolved. Yet the pain lies not in what you do, but why. It lies in your careless ignorance Blindly destructive We are lost in translation. Look at me. Look into me. I observe through the windows of your glassy eyes something sinister; An invasion of complacency and acceptance. A white flag; Mere traces of your perplexing allure remain, staining your dedication to failure. Once I saw Only my reflection in your eye. A fleeting similarity. Fragmented Connection. Never enough…but enough to unsettle what has been settled.
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THAT GAP… I love you so much, But you see that gap, that gap makes it hard for me to reach out. I respect you so much But your ignorance hurts I care for you so much But you dismiss my words. Word by word Moment by moment It grows Tearing us apart Pulling at my heart Heavy with guilt, Heavy with hurt, Useless, going nowhere… If only you understood. The abyss has swallowed us I scream but you cannot hear All we have are the dead eyes That once held the key, to what I needed you to see. By ANON
CREDITS Editor: Aida, Sefer.M Design: Esmaeil.K Page | 33