Page 1

Free Word 708

gairrhydd Cardiff’s Student Weekly

Monday 10 December 2001




Features debate the true meaning of the festive season

Bush prove they’re worth their weight in gold in Music

Arts reach for the stars with Circus of Horrors


Student grants set to return in Wales by Lydia Kirby THE WELSH Assembly is on course to reintroduce the student grant from next September, it was announced by the Welsh Liberal Democrats last week. The claim, by Education spokesperson, Mike Bates, was made despite reports from Westminster suggesting the opposite. Counter to the Assembly’s claim, a Labour report, released on Monday, stated that the Government is considering doubling student fees to

£2,150 a year and discarding the interest free student loan scheme. The announcement comes as a shock after the Government’s proposition of the introduction of the grant and possible abolition of fees at the Labour Party conference in September. Conversely, the Welsh Assembly have announced they are committed to overseeing full implementation of the Rees Report, which was commissioned to investigate the problems of student hardship in Wales. The pledge comes as new figures

published by UCAS show that university applications in Wales are down, whereas in Scotland, where tuition fees have been abolished, the number of applicants has risen. Mike Bates confirmed his commitment to the reintroduction of grants. “Our Assembly manifesto confirms our support for students in Wales and now that we’re in government we can see those pledges put into action.” He continued, “The Rees Commission clearly indicates that both tuition fees and the lack of the

student grant are a huge discouragement to young people in Wales who want to apply to university.” Mr. Bates also sees the current loans system as being detrimental to the job market in Wales. “The Welsh Assembly believes that because of the huge amount of debt students are left with, they are being forced to apply for jobs solely to pay off their debt. This creates a knock-on effect for the other career sections with fewer qualified young people choosing careers in research and development,

the public, and voluntary sectors. As a result the economy and public services suffer.” Mr Bates assured students that, “From September 2002, students from poorer backgrounds in Wales will receive the student grant.” Students’ Union officials welcomed the commitment to move from loans back to grants. Academic Affairs officer Ian Hibble, commented, “It is good to see that those in power are finally listening to students’ fears over debt and hardship.”

Festive revellers go skating in a Winter Wonderland as open-air rink transforms city centre by Dominic O’Neill THE HEART of Cardiff is celebrating Christmas in spectacular style this year with the city’s first ever open-air ice rink. The rink has been constructed on the lawns outside the City Hall; just a few minutes walk form Cardiff University Student’s Union. The ‘Winter Wonderland’ organised by the city council is open to everyone, with skate hire available on site. Other attractions outside the City Hall include live bands, a giant Ferris wheel and a festive bar. Paul Jenkins, Cardiff Council’s Head of Marketing and Tourism said, “Cardiff’s first open-air ice rink has proved to be a great success. It’s a bit quieter during the day though, which would be an ideal time for the city’s students to come down and join in the festive spirit.” The ‘Winter Wonderland’ will be open everyday after 12 p.m. until 5th January and will form part of Cardiff’s New Year celebrations.

PIC: Mike Parsons


2 ● News

Briefly... Charity calls for job swap The Cancer Research Campaign are looking for volunteers to give up a day of work to raise money for charity. The ‘Give a Day – Give Them Years’ job-swap will take place in December and January, and will involve volunteers taking a day off their own job in order to work in the job of their choice. The host organisation will then donate their pay to The Cancer Research Campaign. Those wishing to volunteer should contact The Cancer Research Campaign, Hamilton Court, 375 Cowbridge Road East, Cardiff, CF5 1JF.

Graduate jobs abroad Students with a desire to work abroad after their degrees are to be offered a three year year recruitment partnership with Raleigh International. The organisation, which has been running expeditions abroad since 1984, has joined forces with The Graduate Group to give students a chance to take part in projects in countries such as Namibia, Chile, Borneo and Costa Rica. For further information contact Polly Narramore at k.

Big Hype for student web A NEW web site, designed just for students, has recently been launched. The site, at w w w. S t u d e n t H y p e . c o . u k , boasts an online modelling agency, fantasy football, investment competitions, an online magazine, dating service and a section that promotes unsigned bands. StudentHype also sells CD’s, DVD’s, mobile phones, computer games and books all at student prices and promises to donate 10 per cent of all profits to Children In Need until 10th January 2002.

gairrhydd Address: Gair Rhydd University Union Park Place Cardiff CF10 3QN Telephone: Editorial – (029) 2078 1434/436 Advertising – (029) 2078 1416 E-mail: Visitors: Find us on the 4th floor of the Students’ Union

Monday 10 December 2001, gairrhydd

Police warn of holiday thefts by Dominic O’Neill POLICE IN Cathays are warning students to take extra care of their household belongings this Christmas. As students go home over the upcoming academic holiday, local police have reiterated how break-ins to student properties are ‘notorious’ in the Cathays area, in which students comprise 46 per cent of the population. PC Bob Keohane, the Community Police Officer for Cardiff University

warned, “Burglars are well aware that most student homes will be unoccupied for two or three weeks. We have the same problem every year at Christmas and Easter.” He continued, “We are reminding students of the need to take their valuables back home wherever possible.” PC Keohane went on to say, “I would also strongly advise making neighbours and landlords aware that you will be leaving the property and it is also a good idea to consider leaving at least one

light on while you are away.” “Students should also consider making back-ups of any college work saved on home computers.” PC Keohane is available on the third floor of the student Union every Thursday afternoon. He encouraged students to pick up a free marker pen from his office before they leave for Christmas. He said, “If stolen electrical good are clearly marked as being someone else’s property it makes burglars a lot more reluctant to take them.”

BREAK IN: Opportunist thieves target empty student houses

Brits top of the class by Jane Evans AN INTERNATIONAL study has shown that the next generation of British students are among the most able in the world. Although our education system has been compared unfavourably with other countries, the tests, which were designed to test pupils skills in relation to real-life situations, have shown that British students were amongst the best in the world. Results of literacy, maths and science tests taken by 15-year-olds in 31 countries have been used to compile a world league. Britain is near the top of the class; placed seventh overall.

Surprisingly, Britain outperformed countries such as Germany that traditionally have a high reputation for education. Estelle Morris, the Education Secretary said, “This is excellent news for our country and our best ever standing in an international comparison.” However, the report also revealed Britain’s failings. Boys were far behind in reading literacy when compared to girls with girls out-performing them at SATS, GCSE and A Levels. A link between high achievement and social background emerged from the report with pupils from wealthy families performing better than those from lower income households.

BRAINY BUNCH: Class tests confirm UK intelligence

Got a cold or the flu? Blocked nose, sore throat, headache, aches and pains.....

Missing student found dead in River Taff by Lydia Kirby THE BODY of a student from Pontypridd College was discovered on Tuesday in the River Taff just two days after he disappeared. Kalvin Rogers, a mature student who was expected to go to Glamorgan University next year, was out in Pontypridd with his friends last Saturday but failed to return home the following morning. A body, later identified as Mr Rogers, was found in the River Taff, eight miles from Cardiff, early on Tuesday morning. An inquest into Mr

TAFF: Where body was found

Roger’s death was adjourned after it was discovered that the student had been involved in an incident with an off-duty policeman on the night of his disappearance. The officer told the inquest how Mr Rogers and his friends had left a public house in the early hours of Saturday morning and made their way to the main road. They had then caused some damage to a neighbour’s garden, which resulted in an altercation between the four boys and a policeman, who lived near to the owner of the garden. The boys ran off, Mr Rogers heading in the opposite direction to his friends. The officer said, “We believe that he went in to the river and was not seen again. A search took place on the riverbank. It was in full flood at the time.” The case has been referred to the Police Complaints Authority by South Wales Police.

Have you got time to help us with our research at the Common Cold Centre? If yes, please telephone 0500 655398 (Freephone) or come to the Common Cold Centre. You will be compensated for your time and travel by a cheque payment at the end of the study

Common Cold Centre

Cardiff School of Biosciences, Off Park Place, near the Tower Block Monday - Friday 9.30am - 4.30pm

News ● 3

gairrhydd, Monday 10 December 2001

Taxi fares set to rise despite opposition by Suzanne Deller TAXI FARES in Cardiff will rise this week despite objections from drivers and passengers alike. The changes, that will see the cost of a journey rising 7.41 per cent during the day and 6.53 per cent at night for trips of up to 10 miles, were approved last week by Cardiff County Council without discussion. Under the new scheme, a journey of around two-and-a-half miles for example from Cathays or Roath to the centre will cost 30p more, rising from £4.40 to £4.70. The same trip at night will rise

from £5.40 to £5.70. More than 100 taxi drivers signed letters opposing the changes believing that higher prices will discourage people from using their taxis. The Association of Black Cab drivers also registered its opposition. Taxi drivers have also complained that the amount for working over Christmas and New Year was being reduced and no rise was allowed for other public and bank holidays. They criticised the decision not to propose additional charges if more than four passengers were carried in a taxi.

Carl Cummings, of the Black Cab Association, said, “More than 20 per cent of Cardiff’s hackney carriages are now frequently carrying more than four passengers. A taxi with more passengers should earn more, as a bus does.” He added, “Bigger taxis, which relieve traffic congestion, should be encouraged.” Commenting on the rise in taxi prices, Cardiff student Mark Cobley, said, “Students haven’t got a lot of money anyway and with these extra taxi fares some people might be tempted to walk home. I think I might be put off using taxis if it went up too much.” Journalism student, Rebecca Nicholson added, “I live about 3 miles out of town and always try to get a taxi home. With rising prices I’m not sure if I’ll be able to afford a taxi home every time I go out.”

CARDIFF TAXIS: Rise in fares despite protests from cab drivers

Student shock at forced entry Female student left shocked as man forces way into her home by Rhiannon Davies

FORCED ENTRANCE: Females warned to be on their guard

A MAN forced his way into the house of a Cardiff University student last Wednesday morning. The second year English Literature student was in bed at her home in Plasnewydd Place, Roath, when at around 10.30am her doorbell was rang continuously. On opening the door the student was allegedly pushed aside by a man of Asian origin. The man was in his late fifties, quite short, with a dirty beard and wearing a long shirt and trousers. The man used threatening behaviour, leaving the student shocked and upset.

Cheers from charity by Alistair Houghton A LOCAL children’s hospice is to benefit from the generosity of one University society. The Real Ale Society donated the profits from this year’s Beer Festival to the Ty Hafan Hospice at Sully. Last Saturday, society committee members visited the Hospice to present a £800 cheque from money raised from the festival held in the Students’ Union this February. The society has given over £4,000 to Ty Hafan over five years. The hospice, which opened in 1999, aims to be a “home from home” for children with lifelimiting illness. Facilities include a multisensory room and a jacuzzi. As well as offering care for children it also provides help and support for their parents and carers.

Ty Hafan is the only children’s hospice in Wales. There are around 300 children throughout the country who need the support it gives. John Overy, Social Secretary, Real Ale Society, said, “It was very moving to go round the hospice and see the work it does.” Kathy Gammon, Beer Festival Organiser for the society, said, “It costs £1 million a year to run the centre. Ty Hafan is a local independent charity doing great work and the Society is pleased to be able to support it.” The society’s next Beer Festival will be held on 27-28 February 2002 and its profits will again go to Ty Hafan.

The student reported the incident to the police who are looking for the man in connection with other serious attacks on women in the area. It is believed that the man has now been arrested for the attack, although it is possible that he has attacked more than one woman. Fortunately the Cardiff University student was not injured by the man but the attack is the most recent case in a number of violent attacks on women in the student areas of Cardiff. The police gave the female student some basic safety tips to avoid such a situation happening in the future, informing her to avoid opening the door to strangers, especially if alone, and, if possible, to put a chain on the front door. The police are appealing for any one who may have information about the incident to contact Cardiff police on (029) 2022 2111 or University Security Centre on (029) 2087 4444.

University shops do it for the planet by Mark Cobley

REAL ALE: Profits helping charity

E N V I R O N M E N TA L LY CONSCIOUS shoppers in university shops on campus will soon able to make more informed purchases following a campaign launched the National Union of Students. NUS Services Ltd (NUSSL), the arm of the NUS responsible for purchasing goods and supplying university unions, is now running a nation wide campaign entitled ‘Do It For The Planet’. The campaign will inform individual students in Union shops, bars and cafes across the country which products are ‘people-friendly’ and ‘green-friendly’. The new scheme will give credit to companies based upon their environmental and ethical track record, and products will appear with a ‘Do It For The Planet’ logo, so that student consumers can make an informed choice about which they buy.

The campaign, exclusive to Students’ Unions, is currently running in Cardiff University Union Shop. Cardiff University Students’ Union Shop Manager, Alex Boakes said, “This is an excellent opportunity to inform students about these issues. That’s why we’re participating in the campaign.” He continued. “You’ll be seeing the ‘Do It For The Planet’ point of sale up in the shop soon.” Around 70 retail outlets at University campuses across the UK are participating in the scheme that has seen big name suppliers Allied Domecq, Britvic, Staedtler, Stablio and Premier Paper accredited with the top A or A* accolades. Anyone wishing to know more about the campaign can visit, where explanations of the accreditation process, full lists of suppliers, and details of forthcoming promotions can be found.

4 ● News

gairrhydd Editorial Christmas cheer has taken over the gair rhydd office in this last issue before the holidays, mainly because the approaching festive season signals the chance for us to have a much needed break from continually putting out a newspaper. However, the thing that is getting us even more excited than the thought of actually getting some sleep for once is the installation of the ice rink outside City Hall, as shown by our lovely piccie on the front of this weeks issue. The last couple of Christmasses have been a bit of a flop for Cardiff. The lights in town always look as though they’ve been going for thirty years, and the harassed looks of all the Christmas shoppers do not instil many feelings of festive cheer in anyone. Although it wasn’t strictly Christmas, the biggest event to hit Cardiff in recent years was the Manics new year celebrations in the Millennium stadium. It was a good night and there was a real sense of occasion in the city, but the presence of you and a few thousand others welcoming in the new year was a bit impersonal and void of feeling. But, at last, the council have actually got something right by coming up with an idea that will bring the whole Cardiff community together in with a sense of pride and good will. The ice rink is a fantastic way to give the inhabitants of Cardiff the chance to do something special this Christmas and make it a year to remember. Just be careful if you choose to take advantage of this new attraction, as getting a broken leg just before Christmas will not be a good way to spend your holidays. I just want to take this opportunity to thank everyone who’s helped out with the gair rhydd so far this term. It’s been tiring and much harder than I expected, but a lot of fun as well. Every input, no matter small, really helps to make the paper that little bit better, so if you’ve ever wanted to know how to write for the paper but have been afraid to ask, make sure you come along to our meetings in the new year. Make a difference in the new term.

Muslim Society e-mail casts doubts on media by David Lindsall Members of Cardiff University’s Muslim Society have received an email that offers an alternative version of events of the siege of Kunduz, Afghanistan. The report was originally forwarded by the Information Secretary of the Islamic Society and challenges media coverage of Afghanistan, calling on Muslims to show ‘solidarity.’ The e-mail accuses the international media of ‘lying’ and giving the impression that the war is going in favour of the ‘Crusaders’ against the `Mujahideen.’ In particular, the email exaggerates the numbers of Taliban soldiers in

Kunduz while not reporting the deaths of Alliance soldiers. According to the report, which is from an anonymous source, the international media has given inaccurate figures of around 10,000 to 15,000 Taliban in Kunduz, suggesting instead numbers of 2,600 including 713 Pakistani’s, Uzbek and Arab Taliban volunteers. The e-mail also claimed that US bombing had killed 30 of the Northern Alliance troops and that the Taliban had killed 140 Alliance soldiers themselves, including 35 US and British soldiers. Thor Ekevall, a lecturer in International Media Studies at Cardiff University commented “The report shows a totally different perspective on

Monday 10 December 2001, gairrhydd the conflict. It's difficult to tell from here whether this account is anything more than total propaganda.” The President of the Islamic society was unable to confirm the origin of the e-mail but did believe Western media coverage of the conflict was deeply ‘one sided.’ However, he questioned the full veracity of the report saying “It strikes me as odd how precise they were.” He added that since September 11 many Muslims felt pressure to be less overt in their faith although Cardiff was generally a safe place.

NOVEMBER: Taliban supporters arrested falling the fall of Kunduz

Young people more likely to drink and drive by Suzanne Carter

DRUNK DRIVERS: Killers over Christmas

Student demo attacks clones by Dominic O’Neill STUDENTS TOOK part in a high profile demonstration in London to stop new anti-cloning laws being rushed through parliament last week. The new legislation came after the controversial Italian embryologist, Severino Antinori, announced that it would be possible to implant a cloned human embryo with the existing laws in Britain. Standing outside the Houses of Parliament, the students donned smiley Tony Blair masks in order to pose for cameras. The ‘Tony Blair clones’ tied gags to their masks to signify supposedly ‘shoddy’ legislation. A spokesperson for the pro-life Student Life Net web site, who organised the demonstration said, “The government have no respect for democracy.” He continued, “We are

calling for a complete ban on the creation of human clones for whatever purposes.” However, Junior Health Minister, Hazel Blears, highlighted the need for fast-track legislation. She said, “Bringing this bill forward reflects the importance of ensuring reproductive cloning cannot take place in the United Kingdom,” Concerns about the possibility of radical scientists creating the first cloned human baby have been growing after private US research company, Advanced Cell Technology (ACT) said its researchers had produced ‘pre-implantation embryos’ last month. Shadow Health Secretary Liam Fox MP called the drafting a ‘stopgap measure’. He said, “We have grave doubts about the G o v e r n m e n t ’s competence on this matter.’

YOUNG PEOPLE are more likely to exceed the drink drive limit than they would have ten years ago new research has revealed. The survey, supported by Maxpower magazine, showed that teenagers drink twice as much alcohol as other drivers before driving, with many thinking that five pints of lager was under the drink drive limit. Government figures show that 30 per cent of men and 14 per cent of women over the age of 18, drink to excess, while one third of 15-16 year olds report binge drinking three or four times a month. Edmund King, of the RAC Foundation, explained, “Judging by these startling survey results, the assumption that drinking is unacceptable seems no longer to hold water.” However, Jill Bradbury,

Director of Powys Drug and Alcohol Centres, was unsurprised by the results. She said, “Surveys we have done show that if you ask adults, some don t know what the drink-drive limit is or even what a unit of alcohol is. And if they don’t know, then young people are less likely to know.” Sarah Mobedji, who works for Fusion, an alcohol and drug service for 11 to 24 year olds said, “The message they are getting from adults and the media is it is cool, fun and glamourous.” In conjunction with the Government appeal two weeks ago, to report someone you know for a drink driving offence and the findings of this survey, the National Assembly launched a Christmas Anti-DrinkDriving Campaign to combat the problem on top of the usual Christmas drink drive adverts.

Essay cheat caught by Lydia Kirby A FORMER university lecturer has been accused of selling essays and dissertations to students over the internet. Elizabeth Hall, once a senior lecturer at the University of Central England, has been selling essays from undergraduate to PhD level for £45 on her web site entitled, ‘Anything you need – for your eyes only.’ Following a exposé on her actions by the Times supplement, THES, which led to a calls for the website to be shut down, Ms Hall remains undeterred claiming that all students are made to sign a disclaimer saying they understand essays are ‘for guidance only,’ However, Ms Hall later divulged to an undercover THES

reporter, posing as a student that the disclaimer was ‘purely to protect myself since all the recent press publicity.’ She added, ‘Once the work is in your hands, it is your property and you are free to do with it as you wish.’ The reporter then stated that he wanted someone to ‘take over the whole written side of my degree for me.’ He added, ‘Cost is no problem but I am terrified of confidentiality and having my degree taken away from me.’ Astonishingly, Ms Hall then admitted that she had previously written an entire degree course for a student who had received a first class degree. Ms Hall was dismissed from the University five years ago following a legal dispute.

News ● 5

gairrhydd, Monday 10 December 2001

The Week In Print Dominic O’Neill, Beth Kenure and Lydia Kirby summarise the week’s news from Britain and the World

HURLEY: Happier days

by Dominic O’Neill

Hurley’s lover Bing and gone

LIZ HURLEY’S love life was in the news again last week - this time over a fierce dispute as to identity the father of her future son. Miss Hurley’s pregnancy was announced in early November, but her former boyfriend Steve Bing has insisted she have a DNA test to confirm he is the father. The actress was seen in intimate embraces with at least three other men at the time of conception in June.Her increasingly close relationship Hugh Grant has also been looked upon with suspicion. Mr Bing, son of LA property tycoon Peter Bing and an infamous Hollywood playboy has bluntly claimed she was in a “non-exclusive relationship”. In a press statement released form his office Mr Bing stated “Miss Hurley and I

were not in an exclusive relationship when she became pregnant. It is her choice to become a single mother. The insinuation that I would not care about the well-being of another human being has been very hurtful both to myself and my family. If, indeed, I am the father, I will be an extremely involved and responsible parent.” The ex-couple are now speaking to each other through lawyers and are preparing for a fierce legal dispute. Steve Bing, who has been nicknamed ‘Bing Laden’, has also been accused of sleeping around. His former girlfriends include actresses Uma Thurman, Sharon Stone and Farrah Fawcett. Meanwhile, a close friend defended Liz Hurley’s, “As everyone who knows Elizabeth knows, she believed herself to be in a committed relationship with Mr Bing all summer. That was what she said then, and nothing has changed.”

New virus leaves computers a ‘goner’ by Lydia Kirby The most destructive computer virus since the infamous ‘love bug’ is threatening to cause havoc amongst PC users all over the world. The ‘goner’ virus, which has already spread into company software throughout the world, deletes any software product it finds on the system. The virus is undetectable by the traditional anti-bug method of looking for a specific ‘signature’ of a known virus.

The virus arrives in an attachment masquerading as a screen saver with an e-mail subject of ‘Hi’ and a text message reading, “how are you? When I saw this email I immediately thought about you I am in a harry (sic), I promise you will love it!” When opened the e-mail is sent to everyone in the user’s e-mail address book, tries to close programs and deletes files. Goner also tries to install a back door on the computers allowing them to be remotely accessed by hackers.

Welsh police follow the yellow click road by Beth Kenure SOUTH WALES police are one of 15 constabularies across the country participating in a new scheme to prevent road accidents. It doesn’t involve extra speed humps, mini roundabouts or dodgy road layouts but yellow speed cameras. It is a measure that will serve to answer some of the critics of the cameras, who claim the darkly coloured cameras and their concealed positions do not help decrease the speeds of drivers. The cameras, which currently are hidden, anger motorists who believe they are not there for the safety of road users, but simply as a means of gathering fines from unsuspecting drivers. Home Office Minister, John Denham emphasised “By giving ample warning to motorists, we aim to deter excessive and inappropriate speeds on our roads”. To ensure that the cameras are there for the benefit of all road users, all fines collected will be put back into the continuation of safety projects on British

CAMERAS: Yellow, not mellow

roads. The scheme was initiated in Plymouth with encouraging results. The area saw an 80 per cent reduction in speeding offences and a 43 per cent decrease in serious accidents. However, not everyone is pleased with the developments, Mary Williams from road safety organisation ‘BRAKE’ said, “The speed limit signs should be painted in bright colours not the cameras”.

Attention turns to “Fats” and all as ‘Idol’ enters final stages by James Bladon WITH THE field of would-be ‘pop idols’ whittled down from 10,000 to only ten, the ITV show has entered the its final stages. In the last group, that the combined power of Pele and Platini would struggle to engineer, several of the series’ favourites were pitted head-to-head in the live heat. ‘Popstar’ failure Darius Danesh, Geordie Aaron Bayley and larger than life Rik Waller were all hotly tipped to do well in the talent show after securing places in the final 50. But all three were drawn together in the fifth and final heat, in which only two would progress in to the last stages of the competition.

POP IDOL: Judges and jury

The familiar greasy bob and Beppe style beard may have gone but, Darius could not resist treading more familiar territory. In a corny effort to win crucial votes, Darius told the judges “I sang this song for my parents. It’s their favourite song.”

Businesses in Wales have so far avoided any disruption from the virus, although security measures have been raised. A spokesperson for the National Assembly said, “We have a firewall in the place against computer viruses and our staff are told to be vigilant.” Electronics giant, Panasonic, in Newport reported two instances of the virus but both had been detected by checks. Anyone who receives the e-mail has been warned to delete it immediately.

However the public could also not resist familiar territory by snubbing the desperate wannabe back into obscurity. The final heat also saw judge, and series hard-man Simon Cowell go soft. Following a polished performance by much-fancied 18year-old Sarah Whatmore, Cowell declared his love for the singer. Cowell who has not been unaccustomed to wearing his heart on his sleeve during the course of series asked Sarah to marry him. Cue the nation’s stomachs churning collectively for the first time in a weekend which also saw the horror of Cilla in a basque grace television screens. The eventual winners of the heat were series heavy weight Rik Waller and Geordie Aaron Bayley who both polled around a quarter

of the phone votes. However for Rik his journey in to the final stages of the competition was perhaps not as smooth as it may have been following an on-screen spat with Simon Cowell. The self styled ‘Mr Nasty’

accused Rik of being ‘big headed’; which was in many ways a strange choice of insult. It is reported Rik stormed off the set in rage following the confrontation. Rik and Aaron now join eight other pop idol hopefuls as the epic series enters the final stages. In the course of the next ten editions of the show a contestant will be voted off each week leaving the ‘pop idol’. The winner will then be given a record contract for a year. Bookies have stuttering pretty boy Gareth Gates as the 11/8 favourite with Rik “Fats” Waller close behind at 3/1.

IDOLS: (From left) Aaron, under 14’s favourite Gareth and big Rik

Programme until Thursday 13th December 2001. Please ring the information line for this weekend’s listings.

Lord Of The Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring - (PG) (Battle, violence and fantasy horror - may be unsuitable for under 8’s) Advance Showings - Book Now 0870 0102351 10.00 11.30 12.15 1.00 2.45 3.45 4.15 4.45 6.30 7.30 8.00 8.30

51st State - (18)

Zoolander - (12)

Storytelling - (18)

11.30 1.45 4.00 6.20 8.45 Late night shows - Fri and Sat only

Fri & Sat 11.55 2.15 4.30 6.45 9.00 11.30 Sun - Thu 11.30 1.50 4.00 6.20 8.35

11.20 1.40 4.00 (6.15 Daily except Tuesday) Spy Game (15) 11.20 2.10 5.10 8.10 Late night shows - Fri and Sat only 11.00

The Deep End - (15) ADVANCE SCREENING - Thu only 8.30

Harry Potter and The Philosopher’s Stone - (PG)

Ghostworld - (15) 8.50 Late night shows - Fri and Sat only 11.30

The Heist - (15)

10.30 11.30 12.30 1.30 3.00 4.00 4.30 5.30 6.30 7.30 8.30 9.00 Late night shows - Fri and Sat only 10.30

8.30 - Except Thursday Late night shows - Fri and Sat only 11.30

George Washington - 12)

Legally Blonde - (12)

The Others - (12) 10.40 2.00 4.20 6.40 9.00 Late night shows - Fri and Sat only 11.50

Shrek - (U) Saturday Morning Kid’s Club Children & Adults £1.50 Starts 10.00 Ends 11.30

8.30 - Daily except Tuesday

11.20 1.30 3.50 6.10

Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back - (18)

Riding In Cars With Boys - (12) 11.10 2.00 5.00 8.00

Titanic - (12)

Fri & Sat 11.10 1.40 4.10 6.45 9.15 12.00 Sun - Thu (11.10 1.40 Daily except Thu) 4.00 6.20 8.45

Christmas Carol - (U)

Thursday Morning Senior Screen £1.70 Starts 11.00 Ends 2.15

10.30 12.25 2.20 4.20 6.30

The Believer - (15) 11.00 1.20 3.40 6.00 8.20 The Bandits (12) 11.30 2.20 5.20 8.15 Late night shows - Fri and Sat only 11.10

Any screening £2.95 for students with valid NUS Card.

Letters ● 7

gairrhydd, Monday 10 December 2001

Letter of the Week The writer of this week’s Letter of the Week wins a year’s supply of faith and hope. Unfortunately we couldn’t get hold of any charity, it’s very difficult to come by this time of year Dear Gair Rhydd, In reference to the badger related letter in this weeks issue I feel the need to return this information... It is in fact the tree frogs which are the real threat to human civilisation (including those drinking in our lovely union). They are merely using the badgers to cover up their mischievous plot for world domination. Being amphibious the frogs have the potential to rule both land and water. Also, the opposable thumbs - these are vital for any world dominating organism, hence the fact that badgers don't stand a viable chance, even though they are evil buggers with devious minds. It is however true that the beer glass pixies are far too stupid to contemplate a plan such as the one implemented in the Taf on the night in question. Therefore I would like to request that the bouncers pay more attention to the floor as the crafty tree frogs and their allies are considerably shorter that the average vertically challenged student. Yours, The Treefrog/Badger World Domination Prevention Society Lettersdesk says: It’s a sad day indeed when letters about badgers, treefrogs and beer glass pixies find themselves first up on this once great page. Surely their are more sinister threats to the student population of this fair city than the drunken figments of clearly severely deranged imaginations. But what the hell, - it’s Christmas!

C h e e s e y P u ff Hello all you lovely people at GR and all your charming readers, I'm not writing here to moan endlessly about the Unions dodgy music policy because I understand that the Union has to cater for a wide range of musical tastes and...what’s that?! they're playing Summer of 69 by Bryan Adams!, AGAIN! Right, FUCK THIS SHIT! Before I go off in a big rant and am unable to restrain myself I'll quickly say, yes, I accept the point made by Alex Molokwu (GR 706) that indie nights are not as profitable as Dive-Hive or Gashtastic..but thats not my "beef" with the Union.

Neither is it the fact that it's ‘cheese’ at Jive or Lash, I accept that. What I don't accept is the wankness of the DJ's playing the SAME songs, on the SAME nights, in the SAME order. It's not just the ‘Groover from Vancouver’ and his lame-ass 80's rock at Jive, but this DJ based ‘repetative playlist disease’ is infecting its way into other nights. Example: Whats with with the endless stream of house/trance shite on the supposed ‘alternative’ night that is Fun Factory? I'm pretty sure that most of the FF come for the rock and hip-hop, hence the empty dance-floor when it's not that type of music. If the argument is going to be used that we can go to Welsh club for Indie, then surely we can go to Vision (although I wouldn't

recommend it) for house etc? I'm not saying I want less diversity, in fact I want more. I'm sorry but playing Smells Like Teen Spirit every Monday night does not count as catering for the ‘indie’ crowd. Where are The Strokes? The Pattern? Anything other than Nirvana and Limp Wrist Biscuit, 'cos we hear them all the time. What about more drum n' bass? More hiphop? Some Chemical Brothers? Anything. Just mix it up, play some new stuff and stop it with the old "classics". Yours, Steve H (if I was too wussy to put my name I would put ‘Pat Sharpe's mullet’, pseudonym fans)

Gnome Nonsense Dear Gair Rhydd, I have been requested to inform you of an endangered species – the Traffic Gnome. These small, shy, multicoloured animals reside within their hats (known to humans as traffic cones) part buried in the tarmac surfaces of roads and other such areas. They have a loving for forming queues especially around traffic lights and also enjoy watching their favourite sport – road digging. However if the hat is removed (temporarily) the Gnome can duck under the tarmac (which being a living substance will rapidly grow over the top of the hole) this prevents the traffic gnomes head from becoming cold. If the hat is not replaced the gnome may become trapped underground and will either starve or suffocate. Unfortunately on hearing about the quality of the union and the volume of flowing beverages on sale there, the traffic gnomes have begun to become more adventurous and brave and are now venturing behind the bars of Solus on a Wednesday and Friday evening. They await a slightly over intoxicated student to follow home. Due to the lightweight tendencies of these creatures after alcohol consumption and a long walk home theses disgraces to the

species have a tendency to strip then pass out behind their hosts' sofa or fridge until the morning. When the traffic gnome awakes, embarrassed by it's actions of the previous evening, it fleas from the house without remembering it's naked. The sad truth is that when a traffic gnome loses its hat, the shame experienced by the animal is so great that it will expel itself from the gnome community. Typically when this happens very few will survive once parted from their fellow gnomes. So as a plea from the Gnome Rescue Centre (Cardiff Branch). If you find a hat in your dining room after a heavy night of drinking please return it to a queue in the vicinity of you walk home to save these magical creatures. Yours, Martha

No Ken Do Dear Gair Rhydd, In your issue no. 704 there was an article that was beyond rude and ignorant. Nicola York went to Kenya as a tourist and obviously cameback very ‘disgusted’. She showed extreme ignorance and lack of tolerance towards the customs of the Masaai, and I was shocked at her descriptions and ideas of the Masaai being like wild animals and the ‘human zoo atmosphere’ they presented to her. Ms. York has totally disregarded generations of traditions and culture with her ‘disgust’ and inability to comprehend that in ‘this age of cable television and McDonalds,’ why the Masaai choose to live the way they do. The Masaai build houses out of dried cow dung and mud because it is one of the most easily available resources to them. Especially since they are nomadic herdsmen who inhabit much of semi-arid Kenya. Also cow dung makes excellent fuel and is safe for the environment. There are so few true traditional Masaai tribes left. Many have had to move out to the city in order to eke out some form of living. Those who do stay in their traditional village

set-up do so because of people like you Ms. York who go as tourists to see and appreciate how they live. Ayesha Chawdhry. 2nd Generation Kenyan-Asian (and proud of it!) Lettersdesk says: Offensive, biased, and short-sided as Ms. York’s opinions may have been, she was perfectly entitled to put them forward, just as you are to set her straight. The article in question was an account of her experiences on her travels: all she did was tell it how she saw it. And if she chooses to turn her nose up at people who live their lives in houses made of poo, that’s her business.

Trevithick Totty (again) Dear Gair Rhydd, In response to a letter we recently read in Gair Rhydd (706), we feel the need to defend our fantastic looks! According to the person who wrote the letter, girls who studyat Trevithick are ugly! My friend and I do not agree. We do not consider ourselves ugly in any way, in fact we are not ugly AT ALL!! We are seriously in demand in the Cathays area of Cardiff. Look around Trevithick – the girls are not ugly. Some are beautiful, some are plain; the men, on the other hand, are serious mingers. They also stink, do not own any soap and are weird. The person who wrote the letter must be stunning! Where are you?! You are problably ugly, like all the others. Imagine how we feel! We chose to study these subjects so that we could chat up men!! What fucking men?! Maybe there are many, but we do have standards. Why don’t you all (Engineers, Physicists and Computer Geeks) start concentrating more on your own looks? Good luck with washing, showering and using the mirror. Yours Truly Two Fit Birds

Send your letters in to us at Gair Rhydd, Students’ Union, Park Place, CF10 3QN or e-mail SSUGR1@CARDIFF.AC.UK. Gair Rhydd will attempt to print any letter sent in, but apologises for those that do not make it in due to space restrictions. The views expressed in these letters are usually not those of the newspaper or the editor.


Right, it’s your last chance before the Chrimbo break to make a name for yourself in crossword-solving circles. Take your time, think a lot, think of everything you’ve got. You will still be here tomorrow, but this crossword will not. Or something. ACROSS: 7. Tiny loose particles (6) 8. Of sight (6) 9. Manipulate (3) 10. Earth (6) 11. One of a rock band’s crew (6) 12. Present tense of 26 across (3) 14. Trifling (5) 17. Show feeling (5) 19. Foe (5) 20. Lover’s meeting (5) 23. Level odds (5) 26. Past tense of 12 (3) 28. Opposite of alkaline (6) 29. Give up office (6) 30. Informal name for a sailor (3) 31. Blanket-like cloak (6) 32. Without concealment (6)

DOWN: 1. Unrefined (6) 2.After slightly (6) 3. Overly modest person (5) 4.Turn aside (5) 5. Humming with (6) 6. Throwing rope used by cowboys (6) 13. Skilful (5) 15. Old-fashioned “your” (3) 16. Nevertheless (3) 17. Hole of a needle (3) 18. Be in debt to (3) 21. Parish clergyman (6) 22. Lead astray, entice (6) 24. Ship or container (6) 25. Find fault continually (6) 26. Performer (5) 27. Mistake (5) Send your answers to the gair rhydd office before Wednesday and the winner will be announced in the next issue. 707’s all- action hero was Jody Curruthers. Awesome. 707’s solution: ACROSS: 1.Hedonism; 5.Bird; 9.Sincerity; 10.Tut; 11.Turf; 13.Oration; 16.Unto; 18.Waddle; 19.Aghast; 21.Awry; 23.Narrate; 25.Meet; 27.Lea; 28.Husbandry; 30.Ride; 31.Slattern. DOWN: 1.Hasp; 2.Don; 3.Needful; 4.Spigot; 6.Intricate; 7.Detonate; 8.Myna; 12.Underpaid; 14.Roar; 15.Swindler; 17.Neat; 17.Neat; 20.Gymnast; 22.Weasel; 24.Ache; 26.Cyan; 29.Die

Name:_______________________ Email:________________________ All I want for Christmas is:______________________________________________ ___________________________________________________________________

This week’s winner wins a meal for two at Chillies Restaurant and Takeaway

Llwch Nid llychyn pob llwch...

Miri’r Nadolig

‘Delilah’s’ i Gymru WRTH GERDDED adref ar ôl diwrnod hir a diflas, anodd yw peidio â sylwi bod, ymysg y dorf o siopwyr ‘Dolig â’u plant sgrechlyd, nifer o dafarndai a chlybiau newydd wedi ymddangos yng nghanol y ddinas. Ond… un broblem fach sydd â’r holl ddewis sydd ar gael – naws dramor sydd iddynt oll. Yng nghanol prifddinas ein cenedl fwyn does dim un tafarn Cymreig ymysg y rhai Gwyddelig; O’Neill’s, y rhai rhad;Weatherspoon’s a’r rhai Awstralaidd;

Walkabout a bar newydd Surfers yng Nghanolfan y Mileniwm. Mewn dinas sydd yr un mor enwog am ei gallu i yfed a dathlu ag ydyw am ei chestyll a’i chennin, anodd yw credu nad oes cwmni o dafarndai Cymreig wedi dod yma er mwyn galluogi i’r Cymry gystadlu â phrisiau’u cymdogion tramor lle methodd tafarndai bychan y ddinas. Oes unrhyw un yn barod am her i sefydlu ‘Delilah’s’ i Gymru?!?

Nadolig Llawen i chi gyd I deulu mawr Caerdydd Yng nghanol swn y dathlu A oes ‘na le i gysgu? Neu ydy’r pybs yn llawn o hyd? PIC: Krystyna Golabek

Fuoch chi rioed...?

Chwisgiwch y cyfan a’i gyflwyno gyda digonedd o iâ.

3 wy mawr Carton bach o hufen sengl Tun o laeth tew/ anwedd Cwpan o chwisgi (faint a mynnoch!!) Llwyaid o goffi

Baileys Cartref (gwell na’r siop)

Rhywbeth bach i gynhesu’r galon...

✁ ✁

ydy’r syniad o fustachu o gwmpas y rhew a syrthio bob munud yn un sy’n apelio, yna peidiwch a phoeni. Cewch fwynhau y cafe-bar neu’r teras wedi ei wresgoi. Cofiwch chwerthin am ben eich ffrindiau gan sipian siocled poeth efo baileys a smalio eich bod rhywle yn yr Alpau. Bydd y ganolfan ar agor tan y pumed o Ionawr rhwng hanner dydd a deg yr hwyr. Bydd y bar yn cau am un ar ddeg. Pris sglefrio i fyfyrwyr yw £3.50.

ANGEN ESGUS i osgoi’r traethawd diflas yna am noswaith arall? Yna does dim rhaid pendroni rhagor am lefydd i’ch diddanu a’ch helpu i anghofio’r gwaith. Mae canolfan sglefrio awyr-agored wedi ei hagor ar lawnt Neuadd y Ddinas. Dyma’ch cyfle i berffeithio eich sgiliau sglefrio tra’n mwynhau amrwywiaeth o gerddoriaeth. Cewch fenthyg esgidiau sglefrio yn rhad ac am ddim a mentro ar yr iâ yng nghwmni pengwiniaid cyfelligar. Os nad

Codiad Cyflog i Gymry Cymraeg GADEWCH I ni rannu cyfrinach â chi, mae’n debygol y byddwch yn ennill hyd at 10% yn fwy na’ch cyfoedion Saesneg eu hiaith pe byddech yn gwneud yr un swydd, y naill yn Lloegr a’r llall yng Nghymru. Mae’r ffaith eich bod wedi deall y brawddegau uchod yn profi hynny. Ydym ni wedi’ch drysu’n llwyr? Wel, yn ôl arolwg diweddar gan Adran Fusnes, Prifysgol Aberystwyth mae pobl ddwyieithog Cymru, sef ni, yn dueddol o ennill rhwng 60c a 75c yr awr yn fwy na phobl uniaith. Mae’r fantais ariannol hon yn dod ar adeg ble mae mwy a mwy o

oedolion Saesneg eu hiaith yn dysgu Cymraeg yn y gweithle. Mae’r gallu i siarad dwy iaith yn apelio at gyflogwyr ymhob rhan o’r Deyrnas Unedig. Ond, yng Nghymru mae bod yn ddwyieithog yn ddigon i sicrhau cyflog uwch. Yn ôl yr Athro Henley, a wnaeth yr ymchwil, mae tair prif reswm pam bod Cymry Cymraeg eu hiaith yn debygol o fod â mantais wrth chwilio am swydd: Mae dwyieithrwydd o safbwynt rhwydweithio o fewn y gweithle yn fantais aruthrol. Mae deddfau fel Deddf yr Iaith Gymraeg yn gorfodi

cwmnïau i gael polisi iaith ac felly bydd manteision economaidd i’r cwmni yn debygol o godi os cyflogir staff sydd â’r gallu i siarad Cymraeg. Yn ôl Seicolegwyr, mae plant yn datblygu sgiliau creadigol gwell, ac felly, fel oedolion cânt eu cyflogi mewn swyddi o safon uwch. Felly, ai’r casgliad yw y gallwn anghofio am ddarlithoedd, arholiadau a gwaith cwrs a chanolbwyntio ar fwynhau bywyd Prifysgol a bod yn sicr o fod yn ennill 10% yn fwy yn ein swyddi parchus ymhen diwedd y degawd!!!

Llwch yw: Cerys Jones, Annest Waters, Sioned Bevan ac Eleri Cunningham

Comment ● 10

gairrhydd, Monday 10 December 2001

Comment Comment

Enemy in their midst


e emerged…through a ruined avenue of pine trees and debris…and looked a little like Jesus.” No, The Guardian wasn’t describing a nudist hippie, but a middleclass Catholic white boy from Marin County, California, just north of San Francisco. This 20-year-old, John Walker, who changed his name to Abdul Hamid and converted to Islam four years ago, will be the cause of one of the most controversial debates since the September 11 attacks on America. You see, he was one of the 70 Taliban fighters that surrendered at Qala-i-Jhangi after the huge prison uprising. The Mirror, The Sun and The Guardian have taken different angles on the story – The Sun states that Walker’s parents are proud of their son, who was a “key member of a savage al-Qa’ida fighting unit that murdered at will”, while The Mirror pushes the image of a shy, sweet, kind child. I expect sensationalism from these tabloids and that’s exactly what I get – each creating in my mind different images of Walker. Is he a harmless boy who was led astray from a peaceful life of the Koran in exchange for friendship and a sense of belonging in a distant place? Or is he a brutal religious zealot, killing those who disagree with his ideologies? I try to establish which portrayal of Walker seems more true, but am conscious of


the inconsistent images tugging at my emotions. The Guardian, purveyor of truth (or at least more objective coverage) seems

raised there for twenty years, in Sonoma County, which is just north of Marin, and find it insulting that a newspaper supposedly aimed at cultured individuals could toss in a statement like that so flippantly. As if this was what caused Walker to turn rogue and join the opposition. Now it gets tricky. What is to become of the Taliban fighter? It’s true that he’s young and might have been easily-influenced (his mother says “he must have been brainwashed”) but, at the same time, this man is old enough to discern what he believes. He flew to the other side of the world where he didn’t know anyone, much less the language, to practice Islam. Walker, an American citizen, has been caught in TURNCOAT?: John Walker, aka Adbul Hamid – what is possibly the worst America’s Public Enemy Number Two? crime committable against the United States like the next logical source in government. Not only did he say that he investigating who John Walker really is. I supported the September 11 attack, do indeed find a moderate account of which is hurtful enough for anyone from Walker’s past four years and how he the US to hear, but he went a step surrendered on December 3, but am further with treason. disappointed to come across the What could lead an individual to hate mention of his mother being divorced – his country so much that he would “which is the Marin County way”. violently strike up against it on behalf of I’m not American by birth but was his enemy in this war? Sure, the

government has engaged in some disgraceful activities throughout history. In those instances I am embarrassed to be associated with my country of residence. However, most Americans are not even aware of the government’s international policies because the media, which will vehemently argue for the freedom of speech, nonetheless will not want to speak out against the government, and therefore the view American citizens get of their country becomes skewed and decidedly euphemistic. That isn’t to say that Americans are ignorant, but that an extra effort must be made to get accurate and thorough information from outside sources. Does Walker feel remorse for those families torn apart on September 11? Is he saddened by the thought of a country that wakes up each morning wondering what horrendous act of violence will happen next? Or does he cheer the deaths of innocent civilians? These are just some of the questions that must be asked when deciding the fate of this man. Should he be treated as a rogue citizen, and therefore a traitor, or as a prisoner of war who happens to have an American passport? No doubt this will be the next big focus of the US media, as it should be. A man’s life is at stake, as well the honour of a nation. Tami Miller

Turner on the front of men’s mags with only a bunch of strawberries to preserve her modesty. It seems that it’s the D-list celebrities who resort to these desperate measures to get a bit of the limelight, when really no one else cares. You don’t see A-list couples like Brad and Jen posing with only ivy leaves to cover their celebrity bits do you? Why? Because they do have a level of pride and probably realise that such stunts are not going to win them the ‘couple of the year’ award. The thing about Neil Hamilton and his

mean, a fully-clothed Neil Hamilton is bad enough as it is; nakedness isn’t necessary. There are plenty of other ways to capture the interests of the public, such as arguing over the father of your baby with your lover (Liz Hurley style), or having a fling with a gingerhaired TV millionaire (Geri-style), all of which involve clothes, and are therefore fairly tolerable. Failing that you could always get a large chocolate brand to sponsor your wedding and be photographed sharing a luscious piece of that confectionery with your new husband on the front of OK! magazine, couldn’t you? That seems to work for some people; it could work for you too...

Beauty and the beast?

o Neil and Christine Hamilton like posing with ivy leaves and nothing else do they? Why on earth do they think that anyone in their right mind would want to see that when they open the paper first thing in the morning? Not content with dominating the headlines over the summer they are now stooping to even lower levels of ‘publicity stunts’ to try and increase their popularity. Sorry, I mean to try and win some popularity. Why do celebrities insist on inflicting their semi-naked bodies on us? Really the only person they should be exposing themselves to is themselves in the privacy of their own home, because they’re just not fit enough for the whole country to see. If it’s not Gail Porter ‘decorating’ the Houses of Parliament then it’s Anthea

missus is that they are not particularly young – by now surely the effects of time are showing and therefore make

“ ” If people wish to steal a bit of the limelight can they please do it with their clothes on?

this naked extravaganza even more painful to the eye. Not that I’ve looked at it long enough to notice; excruciating pain to the eyes I can do without, thank you very much. So in future, if people wish to steal a bit of the limelight and inflict themselves upon the unsuspecting public, can they please do it with their clothes on? I

Siân Birch

Classifieds ● 11

gairrhydd, Monday 10 December 2001

Classified Adve r tising ●

Only 10 pence per word

20 pence per CAPITALISED word

25 pence per bold word

30 pence per BOLD CAPITALISED word

£1.00 additional charge for a boxed advertisement

£2.00 additional charge for photo (box included free of charge)


Please print your Message in the box below. One word in each box. Capitalise words you want in CAPITALS. Underline words you want in bold.

TICK BOX IF BOX REQUIRED: TICK BOX IF PHOTOGRAPH REQUIRED: FOR INSERTION IN THE FOLLOWING ISSUE(S): CONTACT ADDRESS/TELEPHONE: TOTAL COST: Please circle the category you require: Personal; Services; Employment; For Sale; Wanted; Accommodation; Societies; Miscellaneous Please complete this form and return it to: Gair Rhydd, Cardiff University Students’ Union, Park Place, Cardiff CF10 3QN. All cheques should be made payable to Cardiff Union Services Ltd.

Mars Twix Bounty Maltesers Snickers

NON-SABBATICAL OFFICERS SHAG OFFICE HOURS: Tuesday 3-5pm and Friday 12-2pm W E L S H A F FA I R S O F F I C E R / SWYDDOG MATERION CYMRAEG: Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday afternoons 2-5pm. Contact Cerith Spooner on I N T E R N AT I O N A L S T U D E N T S ’ OFFICER : Wednesday afternoons. Contact Minelle Gholami on STUDENTS WITH DISABILITIES OFFICER: Monday 2-4pm. Contact Natasha Hirst on WOMEN’S OFFICER: Monday and Wednesday afternoons. Contact Sally Cameron Griffiths on Cameron-Griffiths LGB OFFICER: Wednesday afternoons 25pm, Wednesday afternoons. Contact James Knight on BLACK AND ETHNIC AFFAIRS OFFICER: Contact Prab Ramkumar on MATURE STUDENTS OFFICER: Contact Gareth Hiscocks on Xpress Station Manager: contact Emma Gait-Carr on All officers (except Xpress Station Manager) can be contacted on the third floor of the Students’ Union. Want to talk about sexuality? Or do you want information about lesbian, gay or bisexual issues? No hassle, no pressure, just a friendly ear. Ring the LGB PHONELINE on 029 2039 8903, Monday, 7.00pm-9.00pm

Any 2 for 45p Until the end of term

Tel: 029 20 781472 E-mail

MISCELLANEOUS The Alexander Technique can improve postural habits, release tension, aid concentration and improve general well-being. From November 1st, I will be teaching the Alexander Technique in meeting room 3 in the Student’s Union Building on Thursdays. Individual lessons will be available from 11 o’clock am - 3 o’clock pm, and are open to everybody. For further information and to book lessons, please contact Mrs. Sarah Tovey on 01873 857200, or email: -

Well, it’s been an interesting term. Thanks for sticking around. If you didn’t, well, you’re clearly not reading this so you won’t be on the end of my very best Christmas and New Year wishes. Don’t forget to come back next year for more of the same. Well, almost the same. Big up to Doug, Jo, Lydia, Ruth and Sharky. A very Merry Christmas to all of you. And I suppose you can have a Happy New Year as well. Here’s to another six months of all the best bits of the last six months. Does that make sense? Probably not. But then I guess you’re used to that by now. Did you hear about the dwarf psychic who escaped from prison last week? Police say there’s a small medium at large. *Ba-dum tish* Thank you very much, I’m here all week.... Hello to Watham’s mate who’s going into hospital. Chris didn’t say what was wrong with you, but we all hope it goes well. We’ll send you a card if you let us

HAPPY 18th BIRTHDAY RACHAEL Legal at last Love the A-Team know what’s wrong with you. Fair’s fair. We didn’t settle on cryptic nicknames, did we? But I’m sure you know who you are. Happy Christmas x Definitely not a Happy Christmas being wished upon King Adora whose publicity mugshots are staring at me now and making me feel ill. ::shudder:: Just look at them. . The executive team would like to wish all students and staff a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. Everyone who’s ever written for/ helped on/ cried over the gair rhydd must come to our Xmas party in Daiquiris on Tuesday 11th December. That’s a legal obligation, so there’s no excuse.

Happy Birthday Jesus!



The winning ticket is:

Pink ticket 165 E41Q BU4Z It doesn’t stop there...

A massive thanks to all of you who came out to support the NUS Regional Day of Action on November 13 by building the pile of pennies to symbolise the burden of student debt. The final amount came to about 400 hundred pounds, and as promised, the money has been raffled off to help alleviate one lucky student’s debt. Someone from this University who contributed to the pile and collected a ticket might have won all that money. If you are that lucky winner, come with your ticket and see the Union’s Communications and Community Officer, Elaye Clark and claim your money.


Competitions ● 12

gairrhydd, Monday 10 December 2001

The ultimate in...

The Winners Circle

HMV Albums The following jive bunnies have won one of HMV’s top ten albums. Come up to the office and collect the CD of your choice, but be warned: collection of albums is on a first come, first served basis, so don’t come crying to me if there’s only the Kylie one left. Simon Smale, Adam Lewis, Andrew Parsons, Jonathan Morgan, Judith Pryor, Anaisha Dhanani, Robbie Beaumont, Matt Gurney, Sarah Godot and Natasha Hettihewa.

Rock Sound The following mosh monkeys have won a Rock Sound goodie bag, containing a t-shirt (black obviously), CDs and a copy of the magazine: Nick Robinson, Gem Jones, Becky Johnson, Sarah Slipman and Gary Triss.

Toastie Makers These cheese beasts have all won sandwich toasters. For God’s sake come and pick them up you morons. Iain Gregg, Olayemi Fadahunsi and Rhian Chapman.

gairrhydd Drop your answers in to the Gair Rhydd office on the fourth floor of the Students’ Union. Or send them to: Gair Rhydd, Cardiff University Students’ Union, Park Place, Cardiff CF10 3QN Or email: gair_rhydd@ Win this stuff or I’ll have to keep it for myself.


The one true king


ho! What’s that I smell in the air? Roasting chestnuts? Pine kernels? Mince pies? No. It’s love that I smell: love and joy. It’s Christmas time, kids! Everybody loves Christmas! Even if you don’t believe in Him upstairs, you can still

Win seven King Pot Noodles What flavour are the King Pot Noodles that you can win? A: B: C:

Spicy Curry Jam Fluff

Add your answer to some hot (but not boiling) water and throw it in my stupid face.

get misty-eyed at the thought of a cosy sing-song round the fire with your loved ones. Hello! Who’s that at the door? Why, it’s the Reverend Cribbs! Come in vicar, come in! Move over, Auntie Dawn, there’s plenty of room for everyone! Pass the vicar some mulled wine, will you? And so on. If, however, you’re a freeloading bastard who will actually kill his or her parents if you don’t get the Harry Potter Hogwarts Castle Action Set this Christmas, this kind of jollity will hardly strike a chord in your bitter, acquisitive, greed-filled heart. And the worst part of it is having to buy presents for that selfish, oppressive, shitbag family of yours which you never asked to be born into anyway. Fear not, shortarms, for I have a cunning solution. In the weeks up to Christmas, we have four sets of seven King Pot Noodles to give away. Four of you can win a bumper bag of seven Spicy Curry King Pot Noodles

BUY POT NOODLES: buy pot noodles buy pot noodles buy pot noodles buy pot noodles buy pot noodles

to wrap up and give to your friends and relatives on Christmas Day, allowing you to enjoy your presents in peace and quiet while they stand aghast at your cruel, cruel selfishness. To win seven King Pot Noodles, spare me a crumb of knowledge from your cranial saddlebag.

Snootchie bootchies! I

f there’s one thing I love it’s sitting around with my mates, quoting films and laughing too loud for too long at lines I haven’t heard in years and don’t remember properly anyway. I also love going for a wee. So imagine my delight when I discovered that the UGC cinema in town has put famous movie quotes over the urinals so that I can reminisce while I take a piss. My favourite is the terrific quote from Clerks, about whether the contractors working on the uncompleted Death Star in Return of the Jedi knew the risks when they took the job or were just innocent civilians who didn’t deserve to get killed. Great stuff. Which leads us neatly onto the competition. Well, a bit. As anyone with any taste in films will know, Clerks was director Kevin Smith’s scintillating first movie, filmed in his back bedroom using a camera made from an empty cereal packet. Since then the bearded tramp has churned out a steady stream of turgid, soulless crap, culminating in the joke-free Catholic-baiting Matt

‘mono-browed Dawsons Creek reject’ Damon vehicle Dogma a couple of years back. As a huge fan of Clerks I’m hoping that he will make a return to form with his latest offering, Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back. It looks as though Kevin has realised that his films are only really watched in order to catch the cameos of his two recurring characters, Jay and Silent Bob. By making these two the stars of the movie, referencing Star Wars in the bloody title and soldering the Afroman single onto the soundtrack, Kevin is clearly aiming to impress the ‘stoner/wannabe stoner Generation Next geek loser’ corner of the market. Since I myself fit into this category I can’t wait to see the film and come out with new ideas about what really happened between Artoo and Threepio in that Jawa holding bay. In the meantime, you can win a Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back beanie hat and tshirt to impress your friends. Just tell me the answer to this question.

Christmas Pressie Alert!

It’s a Christmas tradition in our house to play a board game after Christmas dinner. I find that it helps to lighten the obvious family tension that will have developed after lunch, and gives you that sense of ‘doing stuff with the family’ without having to really try. It’s a good job then that those chaps at Cranium have provided gair rhydd with a copy of their new game entitled Cranium (surprisingly enough) to give away, otherwise you’d have to play Scrabble again. The game promises to test out your brain power with an array of fiendish tasks and questions, and even includes some playdough stuff, so it can’t be bad. Or, you could be really cheap and give it away as a present. Either way, answer the question to win.

Win Jay and Silent Bob threads What character does director Kevin Smith play in the movie? A: B: C:

Jay Silent Bob Chris Rock

Win Cranium boardgame Where is your cranium? A: B: C:

Head Legs Hands

FILM gair rhydd Film Awards 2001

ARTS End of year review

MUSIC Christmas Bonanza

Golden Greats

Bush prove easy to swallow at the Newpor t Centre J.T Mouse • Virtua Tennis • Mark Thomas • Circus of Horrors • 51st State • A s h Inside: Get There! The ultimate guide to Cardiff and beyond!


02. Get There

Newly interactive and more pointless than ever: it can only be Get There!

04. Arts

Arts round up the year of Theatre and performance in Cardiff, and review Circus of Horrors at the New Theatre.

05. Books

The GR Scrooge D.C. Gates presents the arguements for and against Christmas.

06. Film

FILM review the year (see a pattern emerging here?) and take a look at The 51st State.

09. Music

Bush! Ash! JT Mouse! (again...) 5ive!, plus, you guessed it, a round up of the year in music in Cardiff and beyond...

13. Games

Games look at Virtua Tennis and check out the current glut of football sims.

15. TV Guide Far funnier than it has any right to be- it’s the Gair Rhydd TV guide!

GRiP Editor Sarah Hodson GRiP Editor John Bayley Arts Lizzie Brown and LaDonna Hall Books D.C. Gates Film Jonathan Steven Games James Morley and Chris Faires Music Gemma Curtis and Maria Lane Get There Luke Holland TV Listings Charlotte Martyn, Nathan Marley, Nick Harrison GRiP needs your help! We are overworked and losing our minds. Visit our media penthouse on the 4th floor of the Union or • E-mail • Hear us speak 029 2078 1434/6

Get There



ell hello, children, and welcome once again to Get There, the only page that looks the same every week but is in fact different! This week, we review absolutely nothing, interview no-one and read sod all. What we can do, though, is offer you the finest set of listings known to man and promise, wherever possible, to annoy the ‘Games’ editor. Hip hip hooray and humbug all round! And remember, gang: Get Hip - Get There!

Gays, soldiers, Christians, PagansGair Rhydd has crossed swords with them all this year in some way or other. Get There, though, has never really offended anyone (apart from that lap-dancing bird the other week.) It gives us great pleasure, then, to announce Get There’s new, end of year effort to offend a minority that can’t answer back. There is a twist, though- YOU get to pick the minority! Choose from: 1. People with one leg, 2. Charity Workers, 3. Goths. Send your minority nomination to Get There at the usual address, and next term we’ll mock the afflicted on your behalf. Hooray!

Union Monday 10/12

Fun Factory @ Solus 9pm-1am, free. Drink, music and puking with a extra special quota of christmas fun. Zipperdy bling! LGB Xmas Party@ Seren Las From 9pm. Everybody welcome.

Tuesday 11/12

Spin ‘Em Eddy Xmas Ball @ The Whole Bloody Union 9pm-2am, £12 Judge Jules, Anne Savage, Gareth Griffiths, Boy George, Lias Pin-Up and Goldie. Bloody hell! Sounds great. Unless you dislike house music, in which case its preety fucking awful

Wednesday 12/12

Jive Hive @ Solus 9pm-1am, £2.50. Mysteriously popular night full of pissed up Jocks with “comedy” slogans on their tshirts, looking for a fight.. Oh, I’m sorry, did I just say that? (Yes, ‘you’ did. Me, the guy who usually makes the witty comments here, didn’t. Just for the record)

Thursday 13/12

80’s Nite @ Solus What more can you say really? 80 pence a pint (selected lines only mind!) and a veritable plethora of cheesy tunes to remind you of the primary school discos of yesteryear.

Friday 14/12

Long Good Friday @ Solus 12pm (free entry), £2 after 7pm. Ridiculous amounts of booze, a couple of fights and a good chance of a shag. Hopefuly.

Saturday 15/12 Sunday 16/12

Java @ Seren Las (Coffee *1) 7-11pm, Free Entry. Suitably chilled Sunday shindig, worth a look any day of the week. Sundays are probably best, though, as that’s when it’s on.

Clubbing Monday 10/12

Rational Thinking @ The End... 8pm-11pm. Though I’m not one to spread rumours, a little bird told me that every person that goes to the End for a night out turns into a complete twat by the next morning. Not sure if it’s true, but worth considering, eh? Big Jugs @ Bar Med ‘Til 11.30pm. Ugly, sad and single? This night’s for you! Guru Vibrations @ Berlins 9pm-2am. Soul, funk, hip-hop and, er, 80’s. NUS only. Why bother? One Mission @ Cafe Calcio 8pm til late. Cracking night, cracking venue. Cheese on Toast @ Cuba 9pm-2am, Free b4 10pm. Better than Zeus. Then

again, so is death by buggery. MAD @ Dylan’s 8pm-1am. Having resisted the temptation to say that you’d have to be mad to go here (get it?), I’ll just say that its full of vile, dumb-arse fuckwits. Ahh. Feeling better aleady. Exit Club 8pm. Free entry before 9.30pm. Gay venue. Chart and Dance. Original, eh? Fantasy Lounge Glorified sweat shop where young students whore themselves to pay there massive student debts. Allegedly. Student ‘Night Fever’ @ Flares Til 2am. £1 drinks all night. Suggs hosts edition of crap karaoke quiz show in Cardiff theme pub. Possibly. Salsa Classes @ Latino’s Classes from 7.30pm, disco 10pm til midnight. Surprisingly good fun. All abilities catered for. Universal @ Liquid 9.30pm-2am. Student night, £1 a pint. Live Music @ The Toucan Club See Live Music. Obviously. DJ Mix Selector @ Sam’s Bar £2-£5 entry. Great for anybody who likes watching stoned 17 year olds attempt to mix. Life Cafe Bar Bland house music combines with arsey dress code to produce a night of breathtaking mediocrity! Fab! Retro Night @ The Roxy Free entry. Retro music played in a club, one presumes. Oh, the joys of blatant sarcasm!

Tuesday 11/12

Electromagnetic @ Clwb Ifor Bach 9pm-2am. Positive vibe hop-hop / pre-gangster rap / battle breaks / electro funk.. Absolutely splendiferous night, worth two quid of anyones money. Which is just as well, as that’s what it costs to get in! Hoochy Koochy @ The Emporium 9pm-2am, £1 b4 10pm/£2. Student madness, courtesy of the amusingly named Jockstrap 5. Salsa night @ Cuba 8pm-2am, £4. Salsa classes from 8pm, disco afterwards. Great fun with a really friendly crowd. Dylan’s Loves 80’s @ Dylan’s Hundreds of flagrant cunts drink piss flavoured lager and vomit on each other. See you there, then. Pulse @ Zeus Worse than contracting genital worts. On your toungue. Alternative Beats @ The End... 8pm-11pm. Another night of total pish at The End, with ‘choons’ from the naffly named DJ Pete the order of the day. Free grope for all female customers optional. Exit Club 8pm. Free before 9.30pm. Gay Venue. Chart and Dance. Who’d have thunk it?!? Singles Night @ Life Looking for love? Try this. Or A Touch of Class. Fantasy Lounge Just hire a whore, you losers! 2-4-1 Night @ Flares Does what it says on the tin. Badly. Offya Face @ Metros 9pm-2am, £2 b4 10.30pm. Alternative NUS night. Its sweaty, its smelly, its dingy and its actually great fun! Karaoke @ Reds Has it really come to this? Apparently so, as the bastion of utter crap that is Reds launches a karaoke night. It is hard to think of anything worse, with the possible exception of drinking neat napalm. Or going to Zeus. Latin Dance Party @ The Toucan 8.30pm-2am. Latin music, dancing, party vibe. Obviously. Alternative @ Sam’s Bar £2 - £5. Live music from local bands plus alternative indie and retro from resident DJ’s. The Magnificent Bar @ Bar Med Everything £1.50 all night, except for a feel from the ropey office birds that populate the place, which are free.

Wednesday 12/12

The Cheesey Club / The Milky Bar / Popscene @ Clwb Ifor Bach 9.30pm-2am. £2/£2.50 after 11pm. A veritable melting pot of great music, local rivalries and Welsh music celebrities. Spread out over three floors, its technicaly possible to get through the whole night without seeing a single member of Tommy & the Chauffer, but highly unlikely. Student Night @ Bar Ice 9pm-2am. Late bar, drinks promotions, painfully average.

Shooters and Slammers Party Night @ Bar Med Theme night, where you get to shoot the retarded fuck-wits that drink here with a large gun, then slam their heads repeatedly into the bar. Maybe. Cross the Tracks @ Cuba 9pm-2am, free entry. New(ish) night, with the Hustler seal of approval. Soul, funk and Old Skool are the order of the day. Sounds good, and the flyers are ace. Check it out. Down to It @ Berlins 9pm-2am. I’d rather not, thanks. Ever. Uni-Sex @ Club X 10pm-2am. Gay Venue. Student Night, worth a mention if only for the highly amusing name. Toucan Acoustic Sessions @ Toucan Club 8pm-2am. Open mic, hosted by Little Miracle. Entry gets you into the chilled DJ happenings in the downstairs lounge, too. Perfect for a relaxed midweek night out. The Boogie Box @ Flares Karaoke. ‘Nuff said. Latin Night @ Life Bar Cafe 2-4-1 drinks offers and dancing. National Student Night @ Evolution 9.30pm-2am. Carlsberg £1, all spirits £1, all other drinks £1.50. Simple, but no doubt quite effective. Wipeout @ Reds Bob Monkhouse hosts popular daytime quiz in Cardiff bar. Maybe. Handbag 120 @ Zeus 9pm-2am. Utterly evil.

Thursday 13/12

Student Night @ Bar Ice 9pm-2am. Late night bar and drinks offers. Hard House @ The End... DJ Jomec does the honours. (Get it?) Disco Inferno @ Zeus 9pm-2am, £3/£2 NUS, 70s stuff. Disco Inferno, eh? Really just a chance for all the fuck-wittages who go here to get used to what Hell feels like. Because that’s where they’re all going to end up. Truly, truly horrific. Big In Japan @ Clwb Ifor Bach 9pm-2am. The coolest Japanese thing this side of Banzai. Cracking tunes, cool clientelle and a permenant in Clwb Ifor. Corking night all round. Plush @ Emporium £3 /£2. Anything with a groove, says the press release, and they’re not far wrong. Sexy, sassy and really too good for a Thursday, Plush truly is a top night for those who like their R ‘n’ B, garage and house slinky and sexy. Of course, if you’re a big Sisters of Mercy fan, you should give it a miss. From the Hip @ Incognito 8pm-1am. House and Dance. Old School Funk @ Is It? Cafe. Bar. Place Open til 1am. Yup, readers, you read it correctly! An ‘Old Skool’ night in this cum-bucket of a wine bar. Not exactly street, is it? Soul Power @ Liquid 9pm-2am. Soul and R & B, with Trevor Nelson every other week. A more extensive, and far less effective, version of Plush. Spellbound @ Metros 9pm-2am. 2-4-1 cocktails, metal early on, then indie classics. Arrive after 11pm, then, and it should be a right laugh. Hooray! Cabaret @ Minsky’s Show Bar Cabaret is the order of the day, usually courtesy of camp men dressed as women. Great fun, actually. You probably won’t be surprised to learn that Noel ‘All Man’ Sullivan of Hear’Say used to work here. Nudg nudge, wink wink etc... Student Night @ Oz Bar 9pm-1am. Dance music, £1 entry. Probably shit. Kraoke @ Reds 9pm-2am. Great. Alternative Student Night @ The Roxy 10pm-2am. Another night clionging on to the word ‘alternative’, as if it makes any piss poor cobbled together event worth a look. It doesn’t. As The Strokes sort of said, This Is Shit.

Friday 01412

Precinct @ Clwb Ifor Bach 10pm, £8/£6. Information (07950) 345791. Splendid dancey night. Tonight, we get the frankly crotch moistening combination of Scratch Perverts and Andrew Weatherall! Bar 150 @ Zeus 9pm-3am. Favourite party choons and games. One bomb is all it would take, kids. You’d surely become a martyr.... US Garage @ The End... 8pm-11pm, With DJ Gavin. Great. Fever @ Barfly DJ Mike with a selection of indie classics. Not bad at all, actually, if a bit cramped. Oh yeahwatch you don’t get your ear bitten off walking home, either.

Get There


Foreplay @ Club X 10pm-3am. Gay Venue. Chart and ‘pumping’ house. Do gay people in Cardiff only like chart and fucking house? It would appear so. Weekend Madness @ Cuba Til 2am. Red hot Latin grooves, by all accounts. Big Bash @ Dylan’s Another day, another slab of utter toss from Dylan’s. Chaos @ Metros 9pm-3am, alternative student night. No dress code, cheap booze and good tunes. Tops! REscape vs Evolution @ Evolution 9pm-2.30am. £5 or £4 NUS. Brash and brassy house night, with a liberal sprinkling of? Its not a sodding wrestling match, people, its a frigging disco! Cool House @ Las Iguanas 9pm-1am. US & UK house. Funky, if a lttle cramped, house night. Not quite up to scratch as a club venue, but as a stop off en route to somewhere bigger, this fits the bill perfectly. Exit Club 8pm, free entry before 9.30pm. Gay Venue. Commercial chart and dance. Again! PLAY SOME DIFFERENT SODDING MUSIC! FOR THE LOVE OF GOD! Get Down and Groove @ Flares Til 2am. Funky disco says the press release. A bit crap says Get There. You decide. Moda @ Rajah’s 8.30pm-midnight. Groovy pre-club night. Self styled Cardiff ‘legend’ Dave Grooveslave does his bit. Which isn’t necessarily a recommendation. Twin Scene @ Reds Not sure what is more shocking, the actual pisspoor nature of this club, or the fact that its full every night. Whatever, it’s still a big pile of poo, and as such should be given a wide berth. Heavy Metal @ The Roxy 10pm-4am. £5. Unsurprisingly, heavy metal. Actually very good at what it does, though. The Mothership Convention @ The Toucan 8pm-2am. Live funk, and mixing madness courtesy of Kris Jenkins, Bones and Dave Grooveslave. Well good, actually. This week, D’Booga run the show, with ‘the most chilled out funk in the galaxy’. There we are, then!

Saturday 15/12

Fever @ Barfly 10.30pm-2am. Indie classics and lager. Expect alot of contrived ‘dancing’ and that not very funny Limp Bizkit version of Faith. Not at all bad, though. Deliciously Wicked @ Berlins 8pm-2am. Repulsively awful would be a more accurate description. Deep Heat @ Club X 10pm-4am. £4-£7. Gay venue. 6 rooms, 3 floor balcony, games room & garden terrace. Well worth a look! The Big Party @ Dylan’s 8pm-1am. The party sounds like a geat idea. Sadly, it’s in Dylan’s. Funky Techno @ The End... 8pm-11pm, with One Mission DJ’s. At last! A night at The End that isn’t shit! The ever reliable One Mission crew do what they do best- make people smile and dance! The Betty Ford Guest List @ Metros 9pm-3am, £3 b4 10.30pm. Top alternative night, with tunes courtesy of the great and the good of Cardiff’s indie scene. More leftfield than other Metros nights, the crowd and the music are slightly older and slightly cooler. Still a bit smelly, though.

Weekend Madness @ Bar Cuba 10pm-2am. £2/£4. DJ Andy Loveless. Twin Scene @ Reds Same as Friday, only more expensive! Hooray! Glam Night @ The Roxy 10pm-4am. £5. Expect an orgy of all things glam. Apart from Gary Glitter, of course. And Jonathan King. Or that bloke from Slade... World Party @ The Toucan Club 8pm-2am. £7. Bossa Cuca Nova featuring Roberto Menescal, legendary Brazilian musician. A bit of a coup, this one, as this is his only Welsh date on the whole of his European tour. The price may seem a bit steep at first glance, but it’s going to be well worth it. Desire @ Zeus 9pm-3am. A night so unimaginably bad, I refuse to waste a witty comment on it. It’s just utter, utter crap.

Live Music Things get off to a good start this week, with the news that the sodding awful collective of ‘musicians’ that are the So Solid Crew cancelled their Cardiff Uni date last week. In one way, its a shame, because that twat who broke a 15 year old Cardiff girls jaw because she wouldn’t screw him didn’t get the kicking he deserved. On the other hand, it meant we were all saved from the even more awful prospect of watching them live. There are plenty of other bands fron accross the musical spectrum, though, that aren’t thuggish tossers. Many are playing in Cardiff this week. Details of these gigs are printed below. Good, eh?

Monday 10/112

Xplosure Xmas Party Part One with The Scooters + Support @ Barfly 7.00pm, £tbc. Cardiffs fave musical sons, The Scooters, return from a storming European tour with this special Christmas shin-dig. Gorgeous harmonies, frighteningly sharp lyrics and tunes to kill for make this a must for one and all. Memo to Mo-ho-bisho-pi: attend this gig, and see what a real rck and roll band look, sound and act like. Amnesty International presents... @ The Norwegian Church Arts Centre 7.30pm. Amnest International mark International Human Rights Day with... (wait for it)... an evening of Jazz. Right then! That’s really going to change the sodding world, innit?!? Jazz Attic @ Cafe Jazz 8.00pm, £1.50. Open mic for Jazz players, with resident rythm section. Whether you use your fingers, blow, suck or just like to watch, you’ll be welcomed with open arms. Possibly.

Tuesday 11/12

Seretonin + Happy Child + Halogene @ Barfly 7.00pm, £3 adv. A night od ‘indescribable’ music, says the press release. Best of luck, then.

Wednesday 05/12

Bjorn Again @ C I A 7.30pm, £15.50 adv So knowingly ironic it makes the Gair Rhydd TV listings seem like an irony free zone, Bjorn Again are either harmless fun for all the family, or the spawn of satan spreading their evil lurgie into musics central nervous system, according to your stand-point. You be the judge. Funhouse @ The Riverbank 9pm. £3 Local jazzers do their stuff, with suitably chilled results. Nice break from the norm. The Selector @ Newport TJ’s 9pm. £5 adv Early 80’s Ska combo reform and play in Newport toilet venue. Worse than Kim Wilde’s cellulite.

Thursday 29/11

The Amigos @ Mulligans 8pm, FREE. The debate still rages as to whether or not this piss-poor covers combo really deserves to be classified as ‘music’ at all. Still, keen to fulfill our role as a public service publication, it is our duty to tell you that its on. Its also our duty to tell you that it sucks arse. Jimjam Jam Session @ The Royal Oak, Broadway 8pm, FREE. Tip-top open mic night, at the coolest pub in the whole of Cardiff. The pub is like a museum, the beer is cheap and tasty, and the music simply marvellous. Go! Pop Vandals + Nameless @ Barfly 7.00pm, £3. No idea who Pop Vandals are, but Nameless are always worth a look. Loud, shouty and surprisingy tuneful. RAWK!!!

Friday 06/12

Pulse @ The Wharf 8pm, FREE. Mothership Convention @ The Toucan Club 8pm, £5 / £5.50 No listings available as we went to press, but Fridays at The Toucan are usually top drawer. Call the venue for details, or just turn up on the night. Chances are, it’ll be good! Steps @ C I A 7.30pm, £24 / £21.50 (seriously!) Truly vile group of walking wank, popular with retarded children and camp homosexuals. Headtest + Kid Zero @ Barfly 7.00pm, £3 Better than Steps. Just.

Saturday 07/12

Cardiff County Brass Band @ St Davids Hall 7pm. £6 - £4.50 Without a doubt the gig of this, or any other, week. Highlight is surely the appearance of fourteen year old Lily Holland on the tuba. Catch her while you can- she won’t be playing gigs like this for long. Really. The Liberty Street Jazz Band @ Cafe Jazz 8.30pm. £2 NUS. Chilled, well played jazz in a cool, well appointed venue. Nice.

Marlborough Pad @ The Wharf 8pm, FREE. World Party @ The Toucan Club 8pm, £5 / £5.50 Usually splendid. Listings unavailable as we went to press, but if you’ve been before and liked it, its probably worth another go! Full details resume next week - honest! Steps @ C I A 7.30pm, £24 / 21.50 Another chance to see these five flagrant cunts gurn their way through Pete WAterman penned wank. Great!

Sunday 08/12

Steps @ C I A 7.30pm, £24 / £21.50 A third night? Why? Acoustic Jam @ The Toucan Club 8pm, FREE. A chance for all budding songsters to get up and show off their wares, which is decidedly a good thing. Alternatively, a chance for talentless twats to play ‘Breakfast at Tiffany’s’ badly, which clearly isn’t.

Societies Sorry for all those who placed ads for this section last week. An unfortunate printing cock-up meant that instead of the second page of Get There, we had a Games Special. We are truly, truly sorry. Really.

ODDSOC Prersents...

The Snowball Xmas Party: 10th Dec @ Metro’s Things kick off at 9pm, with loads of booze offers and a veritable orgy of alternative music. Enjoy!

Live Music Society

INDIEcember: 10th Dec @ Jumpin’ Jacks Lots of musical fun with Star Shaped Creatures, Benway plus one more tbc. £1.50 on the door, with 50p off for ODDSOC, GRIMSOC and INDIESOC types.

History Society

Christmas Party: 13th Dec, Bar Ice/Reds Tickets on sale in the Humanities Coffee shop from Monday, 11am-2pm. Only £1.50!

Lesbian, Gay and Bisexual Society

EVERY WEDNESDAY (BEGINNING 31st OCTOBER) Come along to the weekly meeting, in meeting room three of the Student’s Union. Everybody is welcome, and things start at 8.30pm. For more info email


EVERY TUESDAY Lessons take place in Solus. Advanced / Intermediate: 6pm-7pm. Beginners: 7.10pm-8.30pm.

SHAG Drop In

MONDAY, TUESDAY & FRIDAY 1pm-4pm in the Student Volunteering Centre.

Gair Rhydd

ALL DAY, EVERY DAY! Come and write for Gair Rhydd! Meeting times 2.15pm on Wednesdays for GRiP and 1:15 Monday for all things news. We’re all finished up for this term now, but please start the New Year with a visit to the office- we’re all dead nice, and always on the lookout for new talent. So writers, designers, photographers and general gimpscome up and join us!

Still showing at cinemas across Cardiff

AMERICAN PIE II Starring: Jason Biggs, Shannhon Elizabeth, Alyson Hannigan Cert: 15 After the multi-million pound success of American Pie, they had to bring the whole team back again. AP2 covers the same sort of ground as the first one, but did manage to make me laugh out loud at points and is worth a viewing on a wet Cardiff afternoon.

LEGALLY BLONDE Starring: Robert Luketic, Reece Witherspoon, Luke Wilson, Selma Blair Cert: 12 When she is ditched by her boyfriend for being too dippy, Elle decides to prove him and anyone who ever made a blonde joke wrong and join Harvard Law. Not realistic - we all know that whilst blonde chicks are good looking, there isn’t much upstairs.

OSMOSIS JONES Starring: Chris Rock, Bill Murray, David Hyde, Laurance Fishburne Cert: PG The Farrelly Brothers bring us a movie mixed between live animation starring Bill Murray and animation starring Chris Rock. Basically the animated part is set inside Bill Murray, an ill zoo-worker and Osmosis Jones must save him. Sounds very educational.

THE OTHERS Starring: Nicole Kidman, Fionnula Flanagan, Chris Eccleston Cert: 12 Nicole’s next big thing after the run-away success of Moulin Rouge. Your basic ghost story in a big old scary house here. Some scenes are very “I see dead people” in style, but Nicole does the part justice with her perfomance.

JAY AND SILENT BOB STRIKE BACK Starring: Ken Smith, Jason Mewes, Shannon Elizabeth Cert: 12 The final installment of the terminally entertaining Jay and Silent Bob saga, as Smith says farewell to the charaters that put him on the televisual map of cult comedy. Be warned - you may actually die laughing at this one. Watch at own risk.


Dreaming of a shite Christmas?


This week, in a rare gesture to upcoming events, Books decides to replace reading with reasoning. Yes, it’s going to be a dialectical Christmas at gair rhydd – well, on this page anyway. Oh, and I wouldn’t hold out for getting a satsuma and a new sixpence. It’s coal for you, pal.


Christmas: For O! ANOTHER year turns and Christmas rolls around once more.

package. The fact is, comrades, that you, each and every one of you, including my counterpart across the page, secretly love Christmas. Lo! Children chant the songs of youth merrily Your little hearts overflow with joy and in the street. excitement at the thought of Christmas Eve Ho! A Yule log crackles in the fire, warming the and Christmas Morn, and your greedy hearts and souls of the family. champing chops salivate at the expectation of Bo! Merry red-faced gentlemen distribute the Christmas bird.(And no, I’m not talking coinage in the streets. about a Page 3 ‘stunna’ in a Santa hat). You’re not convinced? I’m not surprised. Because, the fact is, if you really didn’t like Christmas, as we are reminded every year, is it, you wouldn’t feel the need to tell everyone a tawdry sham, an Americanised, about it, you’d be shutting up and ignoring it. If it were really just a time Christmas was always for children, it wouldn’t commercial. Christmas hasn’t require six adults to take one small, sickly become a drunken celebration and well-behaved infant to see the bumper Rolf of bad taste and bad Harris’ Jack and the behaviour: it always was Cinderella in Boots showing now at a commercialised, simultaneously sanitised and theatre near you. If you really wanted to put corrupted shadow of its former self. As we the spirituality ‘back into’ Christmas, you’d go progress through the breast-beating run up to to a commune and meditate on the nature of Christmas, we all subtly and secretly confess your existence and the love of God, instead of to every single person that we meet how much turning up pissed at Midnight Mass for the we ‘hate Christmas’, and ‘will be glad when it’s third year in a row. Actually, if you really really all over’. It’s obvious that none of us enjoy it, wanted to put the spirituality back into isn’t it? Isn’t it? Christmas, you’d be putting it back into your Is it? The hatred of Christmas that everyone life too, and doing that all year. But you don’t, over the age of 13 espouses (and, as a side so stop whingeing. note, I believe it’s getting younger, 5 year olds Maybe this is the most important point to have been spotted busily claiming that the make. Christmas hasn’t become festive season ‘is all just too much of a commercialised. Christmas was always hassle’) seems about as genuine a picture of commercial. Christmas hasn’t become a our relationship to Christmas as the drunken celebration of bad taste and bad vomitoreous Cliff Richard arse about Christian behaviour: it always was. If you don’t believe rhyme and personal salvation in one neat me, just go and see Twelfth Night instead of a panto’ this year. The British Christmas has always been a big winter feast, an excuse to get drunk in the dark. We have simply been wracked with ridiculous, guilty illusions of an unfulfilled spirituality ever since St. Augustine turned up round here and hijacked the gig. We are not, at root, a Christian country, but we are, on some level, a Christmas country, a Yule country, or (as the good burghers of Bradford sensibly decided last year) a Winterval country. So! Go! Back to your homes, my friends. Eat! Drink! Make Merry! You will be pleased to discover that all the training you’ve put in means that you can now outdrink your parents with ease, and the lax atmosphere of the Christmas festivities make this the ideal time to lush them up before revealing the fact that you’re: broke/failing/expecting twins/being prosecuted for badger-baiting (delete as appropriate). It’s not perfect, but it’s a damned good reason to drink mulled wine and eat hog until you lie distended and groaning on CHRISTMAS: A Christmas the floor with a curious glow tree, yesterday of satisfaction suffusing your form. Dan Onions


Christmas: Against


S I awake in my basket, bathing in that anyone who doesn’t throw up at least a the afterglow of whiskey and gin, carrier bag’s worth of vomit is a party-pooper the sad realisation dawns on me or a lightweight. If these people drank a that Christmas is coming. Upon entering the decent amount throughout the year they living room I am treated to the siren-song of wouldn’t feel the need to make festive fools of Max Bygraves, who is luxuriating in yet themselves. another medley of ho-ho-ho-holy favourites. It In fact, obligations come into most aspects seems that the Season of Goodwill is of the modern Christmas. We only follow, or approaching with all the force of a hurricane, a refuse to follow, the prescribed formula of meteor – a blizzard of puddings, presents and celebration out of obligation to behave in a piss-streaked shop doorways. Peace and Joy certain manner. For example, the idea that to all men? In the words of Lenin: what is to Christmas is a time of joy and generosity, that be done? As you may have guessed, I am not the world’s number-one fan of Christmas. In fact, I dislike, and have done for some time, the whole shebang, mince pies and all. Unfortunately this is not a generally accepted viewpoint. When expressing distaste for this most oversized of glittering baubles, this feeble excuse for a piss-up, one’s opponent very often adopts a defensive – and soon enough offensive – stance. Thus, rather than take to the streets to pass on my message, this tirade comes from the secret Books bunker, away from the prying eyes of the HEROD: “...and I want the Dad’s Army box world. set, a cigar humidor, lots of gin, a robot, I expect that a good the Beano annual and the new Fall album.” percentage of you will now be picturing me as some sort of killjoy, the type of person who goes a universal state of peace and goodwill around bursting footballs, pissing on fireworks appears on Earth – what a ridiculous and evil and poisoning the punch. This is only a halfcliché! It’s okay, then, for me to be a masstruth. The fact that most people, at least in murderer and thief, just so long as I give a Britain, do not attach any meaningful religious random stranger a gift and do not expect significance to Christmas reduces it to the role anything in return, is it? These are false it played before the arrival of Christianity – an images of happiness, forcing people to act as occasion of revelry. That both Pagan and if happy in spite of their own feelings. And Christian celebrations have no strict claim to thus, with all things considered, it’s no wonder the twenty-fifth of this month (in the case of that there are so many accidents related to the latter, the date was adapted by the ‘celebration’, and that many depressed people Romans from one of their own festivals) feel much worse than normal at this time of makes the special treatment afforded to it in year. The obligations enforced by the capitalist our secular society look somewhat misplaced. system and the hellish commodification of But why should we The drunken antics and wait all year for what so often turns out to be astonishing feats of a disappointing consumpiton at ‘Xmas’ strike charade, full of the hardened drinker as the embarrassments and regrets? behaviour of amateurs In relegating the revelry to just part of the year (not including holidays, which not all culture that are suffered worldwide are so of us can afford) we are creating a number of obvious as to be of little point relating here, problems, which can be solved with...nah, you except to say that Christmas is merely an can sort them out yourselves. Firstly, the amplification of the state of the world, twentyproblem of excess. Frankly, I can’t understand four seven. the desire to eat more than is strictly healthy Finally, overheard at work: “aye, but it’s for at one time and then spend the rest of the the kids, innit?” So? If you really cared about year on some insane fitness/beauty treadmill, the little bastards you wouldn’t need to spoil so I won’t go on about it. But as for excessive them, turning them into pre-pubescent drinking – well, that’s another matter consumer-fetishists. You know it makes altogether. The drunken antics and sense. Anyway, children can’t hold their drink astonishing (but not in the eyes of the and are fussy eaters, so your boozing and beholder) feats of consumption at ‘Xmas’ gorging make no difference to them. Face it: I strike the hardened drinker as the behaviour might be a cynical, misanthropic hack, but at of amateurs. There’s nothing big or clever least I’m not going to collapse at an office about getting spectacularly drunk only once a party after half a bottle of Lambrini. year. What’s worse is the sense of obligation, D C ‘Herod’ Gates



S t a t e o f t h e a rt 51ST STATE Starring: Samuel L Jackson, Robert Carlyle, Emily Mortimer, Sean Pertwee, Meat Loaf Dir: Ronny Yu 15, 131 mins

Actor Profile: Samuel L Jackson



here is no doubt that ended up switching his major to everyone will know who drama. He went to New York after Samuel L Jackson is as his College to pursue stardom. film the 51st State is being released He starred in several plays with the this week, but for almost twenty years Negro Ensemble Company, did a few the “King of Cool” struggled with commercials and struggled with small small roles in small movies, before roles in Sea of Love, Patriot Games getting the recognition he so rightly and True Romance. deserves. His break came when Spike Lee Samuel L Jackson exploded into gave him a part in Jungle Fever, for cinemagoers consciousness in 1994 which he won a specially created as Jules, the Bible-quoting hit man in award at Cannes 1991. Pulp Fiction, and he has been This led to Pulp Fiction and you all unforgettable ever since. He has know the rest. He currently lives in starred in films as diverse as Jungle San Fernando Valley, California with Fever, A Time to Kill, The Negotiator, his wife, University sweetheart Jackie Brown and Unbreakable. LaTanya whom he has been married But Samuel L Jackson has come to for twenty-two years; they have a a long way, he has worked hard and twenty-year-old daughter together. earned the success he enjoys today. He One can safely say starred in small roles in that Samuel L small movies for twenty Jackson ain’t going years before he got his big break. nowhere, the Born at the end of uncrowned King of 1948, he grew up in an all black neighbourhood in Cool is here to stay Chattanooga, Tennessee during the segregated 1950s. Now, not a lot of people know that. He went on to study oceanography This month 51st State hits the at Morehouse College, Atlanta and that cinemas around the country, and as is where he got his first taste of acting. Jackson gives yet another compelling Maybe that is why he accepted the performance as an American drug role in Deep Blue Sea, a movie about dealer who gets caught up in the genetic engineering of sharks. Liverpool’s underworld dressed in a He took part in a play after kilt; one can safely say that Samuel L someone suggesting that it might Jackson ain’t going nowhere, the help clear his childhood stutter. The uncrowned King of Cool is here to rest as they say is history. Jackson stay; and thank god for that. Anna M

ut together a tall, black American in a kilt, and a yank-hating Liverpudlian football fan, throw in twenty million pounds worth of drugs, and you get one of the most entertaining action comedies of this year – 51st State. The film is set entirely on location in Liverpool, and follows the exploits of illegal drug chemist Elmo McElroy (Samuel L. Jackson), who after disposing of his former American drug dealing boss, travels to England hoping to find a lucrative market for his new product, the ultimate party drug POS-51. But of course things go awry when the Brit he hooks up with turns out to be none other than Felix DeSouza, (played by Robert Carlyle) a small time crook and Liverpool football lover, who hates Americans. Nothing is ever simple in this film as DeSouza must get McElroy to his boss, cut a deal for the drugs, get his football tickets, while at the same time rallying against ex-bosses, exgirlfriends, and a whole array of shady Liverpudlian characters, all determined to get their share of the new wonder drug on offer. Considering the fact that 51st State is directed by Ronny Yu (notorious for such nail-bitingly bad films as Bride of Chucky and Warriors of Virtue), this movie manages to far surpass my expectations, and the choice of Samuel L. Jackson and Robert Carlyle for

the principle roles makes this film the must see picture for December. The film also boasts a whole parade of cameo's from brilliant well-known Brit actors such as Emily Mortimer, Sean Pertwee and Ricky Tomlinson. Also Rhys Ifans (of Notting Hill fame) and rock star Meatloaf appear in the movie as two potential customers for McElroy's remarkable drug, but unfortunately both performances are outstandingly awful, as both actors delight in exposing their great lack of acting ability. However, despite this unfortunate miscasting, 51st State is saved from being just another American style, big budget, no-brainer movie by the amazing unlikely pairing of the two lead characters played by Jackson and Carlyle, both of whom bring their own personal style and magic to the film, and also by the fact that the movie, like Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels has a dark, twisted sense of humour. A black comedy that defines a more contemporary style of British cinema, rather than reflecting mainstream Hollywood conventions so regularly found in recent action releases. Full of attitude and Britstyle gangster action, I have to admit I was pleasantly surprised by how well 51st State manages to hold it's own against the 'Guy Ritchie'-style wannabe's that have cluttered up the box office in recent years, and I can promise that if you are looking for a fresh new take on the British action film genre, 51st State will not disappoint. It is a very watchable film, the plot is a little cheesy and often predictable, and is unlikely to win any awards for originality, but if you are looking for some fast-paced action this Christmas, then this film should be top of your list. Don’t miss it. Leigh Donnachie.

Christmas Gifts

Because it is Christmas we have doubled our usual film competition and have an amazing ten pairs of cinema tickets to give away to ten lucky readers. Simply answer the question below and e-mail your name and the correct answer to: with ‘Christmas Film Competition’ in the subject line. Winners must reply by Wednesday and will be notified by e-mail, so that they can see a Christmas movie. Merry Christmas from Gair Rhydd Film Desk.

In the famous 1985 Christmas film, Santa Claus – The Movie, what famous actor played mischievous elf Patch? (a) Dudley Moore (b) Robin Williams (c) Hugh Grant GR707 Answer: (a) £2.99 GR707 Winners: Claire Burlin, Elle Hammond, Oli Downes, Victoria Clarke and Sophie Philips. Please collect your tickets from the Gair Rhydd office on the fourth floor of the union.


Weekly Film Competition

gairrhydd in association with


20 01


GAIR RHYDD As 2001 draws to a close, JONATHAN STEVEN takes a look back at the year which saw an annoyed Jerry Brockenheimer burning millions on a Pearl Harbour flop, Harry Potter actually making it onto the big screen with enough money spent on promotion to build a real magical land and Baz Luhrmann bringing Like a Virgin back onto movie soundtracks. Two foreign language films, Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon and Amelie, got the nation reading in the cinemas and an animated film got all the critics talking. Lets cut the crap and take a long walk down memory lane to see who was turning heads in 2001.





Baz Luhrmann’s first film for four years is a delicious, exuberant musical masterpiece set in the Moulin Rouge during the bohemian revolution. Great performances from Nicole Kidman and Ewan McGregor are complimented by the rest of the cast in this all singing, all dancing, really quite different film. We voted it number one for the cast, for the fact that it breaks new ground, and for the reason that Baz Luhrmann had the brainwave to make Jim Broadbent sing "Like a Virgin". The choreography is done with style and panache, and the emotional ending after all the ridiculous overindulgence brought a tear to the best eyes in the business (and ours too).



Foreign language films have never been considered main stream cinema in the UK, but the simple ‘niceness’ of Amelie seems to have broken the rules and captured the hearts of our nation. The fact that the number two in our awards comes from abroad is an interesting fact, but more interesting was the reaction from the public at a film in which they had the annoyance of actually having to read stuff in the cinema. Even with that hurdle, Amelie hit it big in 2001.



Director Cameron Crowe takes us on a journey back to the 70’s. An amazing performance by Kate Hudson (keep your eyes of her) as a rock chick groupie sets the film off on a road trip through music journalism.




Catherine and Michael Douglas cement their marriage vows by acting together in Steven Soderbergh’s drug trafficking flick. Look out for our performance of the year from Benecio Del Toro.


CROUCHING TIGER, HIDDEN DRAGON The second foreign language film to make it into the top five. Ang Lee does magic, fighting, China and The Matrix. Anybody who can dance around the tree-tops in the dead of night deserves a mention (and that’s just Ang Lee).



Mel Gibson takes a vague look at the female psyche by being able to hear everything they think. Any man who doesn’t want this gift is lying, stupid or gay. Giving Marisa Tomei exactly ‘what women want’ in bed is worth it alone . . .



Brad Pitt is captured spying by the Chinese and it is left up to Robert Redford to save him behind the CIA’s back. Sounds like any old spy film but the lead actors are well cast and the film is shot using flashbacks in an unusual way.




BRIDGET JONES’S DIARY Loved by women everywhere, Renee Zellweger steps into Bridget Jones’s shoes after going on a bit of an eating binge. Funny and sweet, this movie has stolen the hearts of many and gets into the number eight slot on the back of the Hugh Grant/Colin Firth fight.


The surprise hit of 2001 sees an all star cast hit the recording studios to put their voices to an assortment of comedy characters. The combination of comedy genius Mike “Austin Powers” Myers, the funny Eddy Murphy and the sexy Cameron Diaz make animation the new black.


A KNIGHT’S TALE Robin Hood meets Queen. Heath Ledger is the pauper who becomes a prince in this jousting epic set way back when. A great cast turns this potential dead duck into an hilarious look at England in the middle ages with some rock anthems thrown in for good measure.


AMERICAN PIE 2 Whilst the film is very similar to the first and is a blatant attempt to cash in on a success, American Pie 2 is a good laugh, bringing out many of the home truths of life at college.


THE PLEDGE Jack Nicholson becomes obsessed with finding a serial killer who preys on young children. He even goes so far


as using his step-daughter as bait. A weak ending is compensated for by an interesting performance by Jack Nicholson under the direction of Sean Penn.


01 20

F I L M AWA R D S HARRY POTTER AND THE PHILOSOPHERS STONE It had to be included really didn’t it? Great books and a good film, but not one that was so great it should make it into the top ten. A lot of money bought great special effects and an all star cast, but nothing that made the earth move. And anyway, Harry Potter crashed the Gair Rhydd computer system.


CAPTAIN CORELLI’S MANDOLIN Whilst there has been criticism over the casting of Nick Cage as Captain Corelli, Penelope Cruz carried the movie of the novel that was causing a stir last June. Louis De Bernieres even liked the film, and pleasing an author is never easy.


A quaint and warm story of a young women in pre-war France. Judi Dench does her reputation justice and with a title like that, how could it fail to get half the population rushing to the cinemas.


Hannibal had a lot to live up to after Silence of the Lambs and it didn’t even have Jodie Foster to help it do so. And it didn’t. However, it did have some great moments and at least put up a fight in the comparisons to its prequel.


Festival Roundup

filminternationalfilmfestivalwales This week we bring you the remaining reviews from the 13th International Film Festival Wales, as well as pictures from the exclusive press launch of the festival. Reviewed this week are some very interesting films that may well soon be on national distribution, so remember, “You saw it here first”. We look at the Eskimo way of life in Antanarjurat – The Great Runner, the Japanese Manga genre in The Boy Who Saw The Wind, and the true story of the first black policeman in East Germany in Dirt for Dinner. There are also the slightly surreal Mad Dogs and Labrats with some larger than life animals, Ed Harris’ version of Pollock and Rain and Hush!, both movies about young women struggling on into the world of adulthood. Lets get down and dirty . . .



Directed by Branwen Okpako

espite its winning the First Steps Award 2000, and enjoying considerable acclaim across Europe from underground film types, I hadn’t heard of this German documentary until it appeared on the IFFW schedule, and suspect that it has been somewhat overlooked in Britain. This is regrettable, as Dirt For Dinner is an involving and often fascinating study outlining an individual’s attempt to avoid totally losing the plot in 1990s Germany.

After a chance meeting with Katsuhiro, an indecisive and reserved gay man, she decides he is the perfect man to father her baby, “He has a father’s eyes”. Katsuhiro is going out with Naoya, a self centred young man who is concerned that Asako will come between them. Katsuhiro is also adored by a female work colleague, who has one leg shorter than the other and sends a damning report on Asako’s past to Katsuhiro’s brother and his wife. Asako, Naoya and Katsuhiro all find themselves questioning the meaning of life and finding themselves becoming an unlikely unit of friends as they struggle through the problems that life throws at them. Death, discovery, family and friends all provide and opposition to their being together. The film doesn’t drag on at all, I was engaged for almost all the 135 minutes of it. You don’t know where you are – one minute, you are surprised, the next crying and then laughing. The film takes it’s time intercutting between the various characters’ lives, until they finally meet up. Director Hasiguchi asks all the major questions and prys into the universal thoughts of life. Characters drink, sing


The individual in question is Sam, and his story (which is only a few steps away from being a full-on tragedy) begins when, in 1990, he becomes the former East German Republic’s first black policeman. As a direct result of this position, Sam is now serving ten years in prison. The events which led to this are almost unbelievably unfortunate, and are not all based on racism, as one might firstly assume. The tale involves dodgy government ministers, a provocative and politically radical ad campaign, gangsters (naturally), two police chiefs endowed with two really Two distressing moustaches, and all sorts of other mental shit. The presentation of this material is superb. The director displays all the signs of truly understanding the documentary genre. She is investigative, sensitive, unbiased (an heroic achievement considering the subject matter), and clearly empathetically involved with the story. As you might expect, everything is revealed through interviews, which are broken up with refreshingly arty sections involving bits of Sam’s poetry (most of which isn’t great by the way, but hey – the guy’s messed up). The style revels in your typical post-Blair Witch, postDogma docu-aesthetic. So we get hand-held, naturally lit, badly framed, grainy pictures with that vaguely expressionistic, analogue-esque charm that’s going to look hilariously dated in about ten years time. But no matter – it is appropriate and interesting to look at. However, that doesn’t mean that you won’t find yourself wondering, "Does the police chief’s ‘tache really leap about in that demented way when he speaks, or is it just the cameraman scratching his arse?". Chris Griffin




Directed by Hashiguchi Ryosuke

sako is a woman for whom life is a series of meaningless lovers, suicide attempts, two abortions and ongoing visits to the psychatrist.

karaoke, give their dogs virility cookies, have meaningless sex and they wonder, “What is the meaning of life, is everything including love, just disposable?”. I thought this film would be devoid of emotion, and too concerned with style. I Three was wrong, this is one of the sweetest little films I’ve seen for a while. Postmodern but not nihilst, this is a complex film that will leave you with a smile on your face. Pauline Cheung


Directed by Ahmed A Jamal and Simon Louvish


urreal. That's about the only word that really sums up this film, and I know it is not in a spirit of a review to tell you exactly what the film is about, but this one I feel needs it. Set in London 'a year from now' and to a back drop of 'Mad Dogs Disease' we are thrown into the deep end of

08 Rabbie Burns' (aka Iain Fraser) inner turmoil. Cleared of his schizophrenia Rabbie thinks all his troubles are over, but no sooner than he has left his doctor's surgery the city begins speaking to him in voices – through tannoys on the subway and at the supermarket – even through his TV in the guise of a pig. The pigs tell him he has thirty hours to save the world, he has to stop experiments in the US on the XZB, a weapon powerful enough to destroy planets, experiments that have made the 'Supreme Being' very angry. If he fails the end is nigh. Convinced that he is still 'hearing the voices' he calls upon his only friends,TV Company researcher, Narendra (Indira Varma) and and homeless man Jimmy Joyce (Paul Barber). But as events unfold it soon becomes apparent that Rabbie isn't 'only' hearing the voices – the voices are in fact very real. As he is abducted first by government agents and then by the pigs themselves it seems as if he is being threatened from all sides – he is faced with a cataclysmic outcome over which he has no control. The film is weird, no question about it, but the cast pull it off superbly. Nothing is what it seems and this is highlighted in the superb acting. Paul Barber's presentation of Jimmy Joyce, is lifted straight out of the “Samuel L. Jackson School of Coolness” and rings with mystery, Indira Varma's performance, although questionable early on becomes better and better as the film winds on and Fraser's presentation of Burns deserves all the credit I could possibly give him, pulling off remarkably a man (literally) with the world on his shoulders. This genre-mixing film is definitely worth a look, but remember as the poster suggests it is the 'people who are mad – not the dogs'. Adrian Jones



Directed by Ed Harris

s the figurehead of the “American Abstract Expressionist” movement in the 1940s, Jackson Pollock’s character has always been as enigmatic as his notorious ‘action paintings.’ With this film, star/director Ed ‘The Rock’ Harris tries to provide some answers, but only asks more questions. This biopic tells the story of Pollock’s adult life, focussing on his emergence onto the Art scene and his turbulent marriage with Lee Krasner (Marcia Gay Harden, from the Coen Brothers’ Miller’s Crossing). The first half of the film is comprised of anecdotes, encompassing drunken antics, bedding Peggy Guggenheim, and a bizarre jazz-induced seizure. These scenes offer different sides of Pollock’s complex and much discussed personality. Amongst these scenes are some genuinely fascinating interpretations of his working methods, and the emotional and artistic triggers that led him to create some of his most famous works. A problem, though, is that the film feels cobbled

together from individual stories. This would not be a problem were it not for the fact that when the stories run out, around an hour into the movie, there is little substance to carry it the rest of the way. This is often the case with biopics. A dramatic life does not always guarantee good drama. Some scenes designed to show a depth of character sting with heavyhandedness – upon decamping to the countryside, Harris has Pollock unconvincingly watching golden sunsets and rolling in the fields with puppies. For whatever he may lack as a director, Harris definitely proves his worth as an actor. Having evidently studied the archive footage of Pollock at work, he brings great expression to the painting scenes. His impressive


filminternationalfilmfestivalwales An ecological theme underpins it all, with the boy’s powers stemming from his ancestral heritage. It all feels a bit undercooked, though, the story moves forward awkwardly, never finding time to really explain why or how anything is happening. As a result, there’s very little affinity for any of the characters, even the protagonist himself. If the content was a bit of a let down, the film finds redemption in its audio and visual splendour. The film takes place through sparkling seascapes, Mediterranean vistas and industrial wastelands – the artwork

with the slaughtering and skinning of animals in almost every scene and as a result wouldn't ride well with anyone a little squeamish, but this is how the Innuits live, and it's important to get the real picture. The cast are innocent and honest and genuinely pleased to be showing the world how they live, and to prove to naive people like me, that it is not only megastars that can make epic films. Filmed purely on location the film is set to a backdrop of scenery so beautiful that it will make you gasp for breath. This film is wonderful, and it's little wonder that it got all the acclaim it did in Cannes. Go and see it if you can, and enjoy it, marvel in its honesty and innocence and prove to yourself that Hollywood isn't the only place where good movies can be made. Adrian Jones



Directed by Paul Brannigan

n an interview with the Gair Rhydd two weeks ago, Paul Brannigan described his first feature film, Labrats, as a modern Ealing comedy. It certainly lives up to this promise. Jake, a security guard disillusioned with his lowly job at Gilbert Phamaceuticals, plans to kidnap some valuable laboratory mice and extort a £2 million ransom. He also hires a film crew to record the heist, planning to sell the film if the plan fails. Jake is aided in his attempt by Tony, a walking pheremone whose attempts to charm women invariably fail, and by Simon who is really on cloud nine, as he effortlessly puts the Mad into

Four alcoholic scenes of the film. The main problem with Pollock is that Harris does little to dispel the myths surrounding artists and 20th Century art. This is vital in an era in which the majority of people feel alienated from the seemingly impenetrable world of art. But for those of you who aren’t so fussy, Pollock provides an insight into one of the 20th Century’s greatest painters, and contains some great performances from a good cast. Mat Croft

RAIN Directed by Christine Jeffs


ur petulant heroine is Jane, an adolescent whose summer of discovery is told in Rain. She is forced to spend her summer with Five her parents whose marriage is rapidly falling apart, and find solace in the arrival of the new fisherman in the bay, near her summer home. He becomes a fascination for Jane and as her childish urges give way to more adult instincts, she becomes part of the love triangle that her parents are already involved in. The film depicts the struggle between gender, family and sexual awakening with a thoughtful perspective. Described as the new Jane Campion, Christine Jeff’s directorial debut doesn’t pack in the punches, but has an ethereal, needing quality. The action is not explicit, the plot simple, albeit in places, slow, and the thoughtful cinematography is straight out of a Habitat catalogue. The colours change between vivid and dull with no room for anything in between. The scenes shot in black and white are the most ambiguous and refer to the abstract title. What you would normally consider to be the most important scene is absent totally, and you are asked to make up your own mind, which is a refreshing change from the glaringly obvious we’ve become so used to. The fuel driving the plot along is alcohol and whenever the story sags a little, someone gets pissed. The strange family dynamic is sorely affected by both parents’ abuse of the bottle, and serves to make every scene steeped in potent, cause and consequence inevitability. The central character of Jane is easy to empathise with, and her little brother is absolutely wonderfully portrayed – he is the annoying sibling everyone recognises. There is definitely a certain amount of predictability to this film, but what makes it interesting is how the tensions will be dealt with and resolved, if at all. Emma Osborne



Directed by Kazuki Omori

he UGC cinema hosted a premiere for the IFFW with a unique heritage this year – a Japanese animation in the good old Manga style, penned by a Neath lad. Okay then. C.W. Nicols, who was present at this screening, has lived in Japan for the last 40 years, and penned a novel (based on a dream he had in his first week there) which went to the top of the Japanese best seller list. For a film with such a rich background, then, it was disappointing to see a manga movie much like any other. A recently orphaned young boy (with strange powers, of course) takes on the might of the Gold Snake Brigade – an unfortunately named empire, hell bent on world domination.

IFFW – Part Two

preparation for the role involved actually learning to paint, and also growing an immense beer gut for the final


and the characterisations (both in design and animation) are all wonderful. The sweeping, orchestral score is perfect, too, taking in aspects of European and Japanese music. All in all, then, an Six accomplished but uninvolving production. I just couldn’t shake off the feeling that I was watching the bastard child of Laputa, and The Mysterious Cities of Gold. And I’m not sure if that’s a recommendation or not. Gareth Lloydd



Directed by Zacharias Kunuk

'll be honest, the thought of sitting in a cinema watching three hours of Eskimo's (oops, we're not supposed to call them that anymore) talk in a language that had never been documented before, wasn't something that I was looking forward to. But I was wrong. The film was incredible. The sweeping landscapes were magical and the non-professional cast brought an honesty to the film that made it so enjoyable to watch that at the end of the three hours I was disappointed that it was over. The film, at its core, deals with a typically Hollywood love triangle, but in the far more real world of the Innuits. Antanarjurat falls in love with Atua, who has been promised in an arranged marriage to Oki. They fight, Antanarajurat wins, and therefore gains the right to marry Atua. Oki is angry and begins to plot the murder of both Antanarjurat and his brother Amaquarajat. He succeeds in killing Amaquarajat, but fails to kill Antanarjurat who escapes naked into the Arctic. Fighting for his life Antanarjuat finds himself on the verge of death. Considered dead, Oki takes Atua as his wife. But, and some would say obviously, Antanarjuat finds a family to take him in, becomes strong and returns to take back to rescue his wife. The film is full of traditions, which is why it takes so long, and although these sometimes make it seem like a documentary, without them, the film wouldn't be able to capture its audience in the way it does. It's brutally honest

Madchester. The characters are believable and quirky, from Jake’s obsession with the Third Reich to Simon’s excellent guide to appreciating nature (helped along by some magic mushrooms and a dazed looking cow). The crew are also part of the film, and become increasingly involved as the film progresses, giving the film a documentary, guerrilla feel. Oddly enough, both the crew and the mice are trying to escape from their own frustrating circumstances – the crew from years of making corporate videos, and the mice from the dreaded fate of vivisection. Brannigan persuaded some famous names to do the voices for the mice, including Sir Donald Sindon, Norman Wisdom and Martin Clunes. The mouse-eye view adds an extra dimension to the plot, and the rodents soon discover that their liberators do not have the best of motives. The plot develops with unexpected turns. Upon holding up the van the driver recognises Jake and has to be taken hostage, later revealing that he is a more experienced excon. Holed up in their log cabin in darkest North Wales, the team and crew wait for the ransom, but even the best laid plans of mice and men can develop into a comedy of errors. This film is really something special, and deserves to be distributed as widely as possible. The music by Thomas O’Carrol also deserves mention and fits superbly with the action. Adrian Everett


Photos by Jonathan Steven 1. Welsh Language Film: Nerys Lloyd - Producer, Cross-Current 2. TV Interview: Philip Claydon - Director, Alone 3. Tired: Director and Producers, Fatigue 4. Ratty: Paul Brannigan - Director, Lab Rats (& friend) 5. The Boss: Michelle Williams - Festival Manager 6. Small Talk: Mingling at the IFFW Press Launch



10 highways and dusty roads, with frequenting imagery: angels, the city on the hill, the prophets and themes of flying and falling. It’s a bit like listening to Nick Cave and Godspeed You Black Emperor!, at the same time. Genius. John Widdop

ASH The Rock, Bristol


PIC: Mike Parsons

A SOLD out crowd seems to be having trouble getting it’s collective head round the layout of this odd venue – entry to the standing room in front of the barricades (i.e. the fun bit) is on a first come, first served basis. Hence your reviewers getting stuck at the back with the Mums and Dads. Seafood are up first, and although they’ve got the aesthetics just right (strobe lights, guitar hero posturing, etc.), they just don’t seem to realise that its impossible to play the same two chords for ten minute stretches and still keep people interested. Ash saunter out to the strains of the Twin Peaks soundtrack (them crazy guys) and launch straight into what is, essentially, a blistering a-sides set, with very few exceptions. New single There’s a Star was highlighted via the cunning use of fake snow – everything went all Christmassy. A more cynical hack would probably blast Ash’s shameless pandering to the ballad-loving masses – not us, though! No, that raw energy is still there on the older tracks, and, well, we just can’t stay mad at them. Not while the sultry Charlotte is pouting from the stage, anyway. (And Tim is still “sooo sexy!”, according to the female point of view.) Gareth Lloyd and Victoria Richards

Wheeler on fire MARK LANEGAN TJ’s Newport

LIFT TO EXPERIENCE Clwb Ifor Bach LIFT TO Experience are one of the greatest bands of all time. Their The Texas Jerusalem Crossroads is easily THE debut album of this year, and probably one of the best debut albums of all time. They are, simply, extraordinary. A man with sideburns of indescribable size stands before a cow skull, blowing smoke from a minute cigarette hanging from his mouth. Across from him, another man with a beard of indescribable size, and a drummer (with almost sensible hair), who beats ten shades of crap out of his kit. Two of these men are called Josh. Two are sons of preachers and the other was raised on church music, but they certainly don’t preach. They look like they’ve never set foot outside of a Texan ranch and sound like they’ve never heard ANY music in their life. Oh, and they are the greatest band you’ve never heard. Filling Ifor Bach with a frankly bizarre assortment of people, many whom seem to hail them as the new wave of prog rock, Josh Pearson (vocals, guitar, sideburns) begins by stating "These are all our own songs" before somersaulting into an instrumental take on Just

IF YOU made it down to catch Overflow at Barfly, then you’d be surprised to learn that four days earlier, the band had been reunited with their drummer for the first time since their last gig six months ago. It’s an achievement then that not only did Overflow convince us that this was more than just a makeshift arrangement, but that they’re on their way to being the finished article. Sure there was a rough edge to a few of the songs, but the overriding impression was that here are a band who are oozing with stage presence and are totally comfortable with their instruments and each other. The set encompassed a range of styles from the bounce of opening number City Life, to the acoustic cool of Broken Doll (sadly trashed by a deaf/stoned sound man), and the rousing ETA that closed the gig, sucking the audience into a trance like a dance record rather than pie and mash rock. Keep an eye open for Overflow – they’re spilling onto the circuit and you’d well advised to lap it up. Pat McCaren

CUT LA ROC Solus (Room 2) CUT LA ROC IS one of the ex-frontrunners of ex-front-running big beat label Skint, which has gone a bit quiet as of late. But any hopes of a last minute 1998 big beat revival were put to an abrupt end upon entering the rather bizarre ‘chill out room’ atmosphere that had been created for tonight’s proceedings. The size of the room was never going to allow much of a party. However, Cut La Roc didn’t waste this opportunity to play what was in the end a rather odd choice of set list, which involved every record sounding like it could have been the incidental music from Dirty Harry or any other classic 70’s San Franciscan cop film. Which is rather pleasant to listen to, however, in a steaming nightclub full of drunk-to-fuck students, it made the whole scenario a little watery and lacking in energy. Later on, the disco classics came out (the nightclub scenes in Dirty Harry) and everyone seemed happy. John Widdop

I saw a mouse! PIC: Jamie Fullerton

FOR THOSE of you who don’t know, Mark Lanegan is a small legend in the music industry. His first band, Screaming Trees, were one the grunge pioneers before Nirvana were around. Having split three years ago Lanegan has since produced solo albums and worked with Queens of the Stone Age. The crowd at tonight’s gig is made up of people in their late twenties to early thirties; in fact, I feel that I am the youngest person there. This goes to prove that Lanegan has a dedicated following who will continue to support him. The band us keep us waiting for two hours but then Lanegan rattles through an impressive set of twelve songs in an hour. He does not speak to the crowd, which enforces the feeling that he is somewhat of an enigma. His vocals are deep and gravely which suits the hard rock nature of the songs. His band are on top form too. The guitarist plays with his eyes firmly shut, the drummer pounds his drums in the ground, while the bass player moves using his guitar in a very phallic way. Mark Lanegan has been around for years, and on the basis of tonight’s performance lets hope he is around for much longer. Anthony Lloyd

as was told. As if it could be written by anyone else. They follow with Falling from Cloud 9, their crowning glory to date. It reaches the point far off in a moonlit desert, where the parallel lines of post-rock, country music, and gospel all meet and have a party. This amalgamation remains the key theme throughout the rest of the set, the highlight being the breathtaking With The World Behind, a tale of suicide told through the eyes of a Texan in a Stetson. Lift To Experience have a look and sound which is almost entirely unique. When they play, they paint exotic scenarios of deserted

THIS WAS the last date of the ‘Cover Your Ears and Run’ tour. The last nine days has seen these three bands play together, drink together and no doubt do other stuff together. A refurbished Sam’s Bar opened to a healthy number of punkers. The venue has benefited from the investment. It is now a ‘cosy’ little club compared to how it was. A.7 mounted the stage as a sea of bad haircuts, to deliver a blistering performance. The third time that I have seen this band live, and on each occasion they have improved. The funk infested, Punk/Hardcore that features on their E.P was a pleasure to watch live. After all the work and sacrifice they have given to their music, stage presence and material is now much better. Heavy only where it needs to be, something that is very important. They are more comfortable with each other and it is this that shows by a set that is tight and well formulated. They deserve to do well and should do. The also Cardiff-based Cheapskates played mostly tracks off their new C.D. The feel-good vibe and interaction with the enthusiastic audience was appreciated. Despite having a song title, All Our Songs Sound the Same, this is not entirely true. What is true, is that they are little more than standard. Jesse James provided a more radio friendly feel with a set that had few stand-out points. Again, they offered little to distinguish themselves but deserved more attention from the diminishing audience than they received. The standard of each band was high this evening, saying something for the local Punk scene at the moment. Thanks again to Sam’s, and a big ‘What Up!’ to the promoter, James. Rich ‘David.P’ Moore


JT MOUSE: again...(apologies...)


TONIGHT’S SUPPORT act were Westgate Street, who desperately wanted to be taken seriously. Hence emotional vocals in American accents and lots of acoustic strumming in minor keys. What this amounts to, however, is music that can only be defined as MOR, AOR, and BOR-ing. One for Savage Garden fans, Corrs fans and corpses. Go soak your heads. Next came the most fittingly named band in Cardiff: JT Mouse. Even before they begin to play, the stage presence of one tiny mulletted mouse-man surrounded by big skinheads is already entertaining. But when they start to play, stealing from every established style you can name and boiling the ingredients together in their big musical cauldron of fun, they create a sound that is distinctly their very own. The first few numbers point to a Beck-ish country theme, as tracks steam by with the pacey tongue-in cheek twist JTM apply to the genre. They swing from death-metal disco to SFA psychedelic space pop, all with the diminutive frontman’s deep baritone vocals and captivating persona. Songs about cross dressing for Vogue and one called Jamie Oliver’s a Fucking Slimy C*** feature, acting as vehicles for their entertaining and slightly twisted sense of humour. JTM even manage to incorporate Will Smith’s and DJ Pied Piper’s cheesy pop moments into their crazy montage of musical madness, actually making them sound relevant (unlike in the originals). Their new EP Swingers is out as you read this; it’ll probably be worth buying a record player to spin the nice shiny vinyl with. Mmmm. Shame they won’t fit in stockings (unlike the singer). It would be too easy to call them “the next Super Furries” or “the next whoever” but JTM are positively unique, and can look forward to the process of carving out their own niche. One of Cardiff’s genuine gems. Mat C & Jamie Fullerton


musiclive PIC: Mike Parsons

BUSH / VEX RED Newport Centre THE JURY’S still out on Vex Red, they’ve got the metal/ goth look but may need more tunes if they are to live up to the hype. Itch and Can’t Smile are certainly promising but the more introspective material doesn’t really make an impact this evening. Their secret weapon may well in the form of a vocalist who not only has a reassuringly English voice but the girls seem to love him. A British Silverchair? Possibly but that’s not necessarily a good thing. Bush have never really baited publicity but the British music press seemed to have met their brand of grunge-rock with a particular cynicism. Tonight Bush certainly deliver for their fans even if the P.A doesn’t. The incredibly low end sound dogs the whole set throughout and at times you wonder if you’re a gig at all let alone hear what Rossdale is saying to the crowd. Opening with the driving riff of Fugitive gets the kids going at least and forthcoming single The People that We Love sees Bush return to their hook-laden strengths. From their more uncommercial second album, the brooding Insect Kin is a welcome inclusion. The poor front-end sound certainly doesn’t restrain Rossdale, the band’s undeniable focus, who actually goes on walkabout through the crowd during the song. It’s when Bush play their angst soaked older material that they shadow their more recent efforts though. Looking behind the faux Nirvana accusations, it’s hard to deny the quality of low key sing-along Glycerine and the anthemic double whammy of Machine Head and Comedown. The final song; a blistering Little Things ends the night on a satisfying note. Maybe Bush are no revolution but their songs should be valued highly amongst the current barrage of nu-metal arse. Rob Laing

The people that we love? DRUGSTORE / MOWER Barfly WHEN GOD invented Indie he wasn’t thinking of Oasis filling stadiums or Starsailor being, like, musically proficient. No, he was, give or take the odd female bassist, thinking of Mower. Speccy geek bloke with appalling hair? Check. Vocals descending to crazed screaming? Check. The occasional song backed by a £1from-Oxfam Casio? Check. Oh yes, Mower have it all and, if that’s your bag, they do it remarkably well. They’re a rougher edged Pavement (that’ll explain Blur guitarist Graham Coxon’s involvement then) and whilst they’re not catchy as such, they do have a, perhaps slightly angular, pop nous. New single Na is typical of their quaint charm. What keeps eyes glued to the stage though is frontman Matt Mower. He’s mental – breaking strings every other song, losing his glasses at the climax of the more intense songs and forcing polite band members into a set-ending bundle. It’s hilarious and great to watch. Drugstore are an altogether different proposition but are equally captivating. Frontwoman Isabel Monteiro may be tiny but her stage presence is huge. She demands the sitting few in the crowd “stop being so fucking lazy and stand up”. Her voice adds suitable drama to her demon stare. Occasionally the ‘Store’s Velvet Underground meets Tindersticks fuzziness is a little wandering but mostly it’s divine. Fader’s “doo-doo”s still shine 7 years in from its release and almost-hit Il Presidente still has its epic glory. The bond between the audience and the band onstage makes this occasion joyous. And by the time they’re joined onstage by Mower for a special singalong Christmas song grown men are literally hugging speakers. Tonight has been very special and is a reminder the Drugstore should not be forgotten. Paul Barnett

THESE DAYS, the overenthusiasm of the British Music Press inevitably leads to a certain cynicism when the title ‘Best New Band In Britain’ is bestowed on yet another posse of ropey indie chancers every other week. This month, it’s the turn of a sextet of fresh-faced richboys from the Wirral. They are known as The Coral, they are currently on a nationwide tour, they have the much-coveted fourth spot on the NME tour that served Coldplay and Starsailor so well, and tonight they are playing Cardiff.


Throughout the songs, tempos and styles shift radically and without warning, but nothing sounded a note out of place. When the last song morphed into a cover of Bob Marley’s Get Up Stand Up it seemed the most natural thing in the world. That, apart from a blatant plug for some overpriced T-shirts, was that. The Coral are clearly excellent live, and I look forward to their inevitable assault on the charts with considerable interest. Mark Cobley

DAVE PEARCE Solus AFTER THE huge disappointment with Dave Pearce cancelling his performance with Timeflies in October, Dave promised on Radio 1 that this rescheduled gig was going to be “Banging” and it certainly was. The warm sound of a remixed with Rapture and PPK’s Resurrection bellowing through the Solus doors, reflected the fantastic quality of the warm up DJ’s. Although no one was dancing for the first 2 hours, which was really embarrassing, not only for clubbers but also for the DJ playing, the quality of sound was outstanding. This was the perfect warm up the main attraction of the night, the eagerly awaited Dave Pearce.

Dave, who is well known for his Radio 1 show, Dance Anthems, has been busy with the new release of the Euphoria album, which included many on the tracks played at the gig. Quickly shuffled into the DJ box, Dave started his set with an ultimate club classic from a couple of years ago, a remixed CRW and I Feel Love. Dave played an hour and half set indulging in old club anthems and essential unheard of soon to be club classics from his own label, Nu Life, including Ian Van Dahl’s new release Will I. Dave definitely appealed to the audiences needs by spinning the original Riva, and a reworked Sound Dezign Happiness and not forgetting an excellent bootleg which has been circulating the club seen for a couple of years, which got the crowed pumping, Mauro Picotto’s Lizard with Camisra. The biggest shock of the evening was the poor turn out. The audience were a mixture from those who thought it was a Gatecrasher gig, with glowsticks and paint to those who thought it was an early 1990s rave and didn’t know who they were let alone Dave Pearce. However the audience certainly made up for it by ‘giving it large’ and even some attempts were even made to climb into the DJ box. This was an excellent warm up ready for next week’s big gig at the union with Judge Jules and the special guest. Suzanne Carter

HUNDRED REASONS/ HELL IS FOR HEROES/ REDLIGHTSFLASH Newport TJ’s AUSTRIAN HARDCORE punkers Redlightsflash are one of these bands you don’t know whether to take seriously or not. They frantically raced through their heavy six song set like a raging bull, leaving a surprised and somewhat confused audience wondering what they’d just witnessed. It is disturbing how comic krautrock can still be. Luckily, Wales’s own nu-metal darlings Liberty 37 stepin and play a blinding set, reviving the crowd [and my sanity] with their fusion of catchy, melodic rock,like opener Falling Out and heavier,bassier numbers like Broadside and the awesome Pig. If catchy, emotivenu-metal floats your boat these are definitely a band to check out. They made next band Hell Is For Heroes appear quite weak in comparison. Featuring ex-members of Symposium, Hell Is For Heroes sound uncannily like Lost Prophets without the decks. They churned out rather average rock songs with melodic intervals like highlight Out 0f Sight. They basically sound like a million other bands out there. Which is why final act Hundred Reasons are such a breath of fresh air. Apart from at times sounding rather like At the Drive-in their sound is pretty different compared to the Linkin Park type drivelflooding the market at the moment. Tonight particularly showed this, especially with crowd pleaser Remmus,new single I’ll Find You and the brilliant If I Could. With the new material sounding this good, it’s only going to be a short time before they’re big. Gemma Jones

Photo: Matt Skelley


So, on to the cramped little oven of a venue that is the Barfly. It was hardly packed, but those who did turn up were in for a treat. Support act The Zutons arrived fashionably late, offering John Power haircuts and odd skaindie. Technically they were very good, but it was when they dedicated a song to Jimmy Nail and then descended into a slightly surreal hillbilly hoedown that I began to suspect greatness is not in this band’s future. And so to The Coral, perhaps the most absurdly youthful band I’ve seen for a while. All the members except the singer, James Skelly, are under 20 and even he looks like he might sneak on the bus for half price. However, youth aside, these boys can play. They crashed in with a boisterous opening number, giving Skelly a chance to shout about “sailing on the Spanish main”. It’s quickly apparent this is dance music- and I don’t mean that shite they play in clubs. The bassist is fantastic, and his complex rhythms underpin most of the Coral’s eclectic mix of styles. Their sound incorporates reggae, punk, indie and older styles of music too. This was shown perfectly by the three-song centrepiece of the set: the angst-ridden Good Fortune gave way to a blistering punk number, followed up by the lilting sea-shanty of debut single Shadows Fall.

H u n d re d R e a s o n s why we love them... 10.12.01


Scream if you want to go faster NEW ORDER 60 Miles An Hour (London)

I DON’T know what it is about New Order. The old boys, (and girl) seem incapable of doing wrong, and this latest offering from the masters of pop is no exception. The fact that they hold the record for the best selling 12” of all time for Blue Monday is a somewhat well-deserved testament to them, perhaps a reflection of just how much they have influenced music through the decades.

In 60 Miles An Hour, the usual grooving bass and electronicablur have a hook that is near unmatched by those of the current market. Summner’s famously recognisable vocals power over an emphatic buzz of a genius chart music; typically classy and what, if there was any justice at all, would feature high in the ‘Hit Parade.’ As life isn’t this fair though, the kids will probably turn their back on such quality, and instead keep their head fully up Fred Durst’s arse. Sometimes these things that happen are just rubbish. Gemma Curtis

12 formulaic trance-pop shite that you’ve already heard a thousand times before. This trance-by-numbers comes from the same people who gave us the ‘Ibeefa’ anthem Toca’s Miracle. Admittedly that was also commercial dance cheese, but it was still quite a good tune – namely because of its summery Spanish guitar and sing along vocals. This, on the other hand, has absolutely nothing going for it. The next time time you see this tune will no doubt be in an Ibiza compilations bargain bin. Instantly forgettable, and I suggest that’s what you do. Ben Hammond


SEAN JOHN, Sean Puffy Combs, Piff, Poef, Puff Daddy, Puffy, Paf Diddy and now P.Shitty, pardon me, P.Diddy. This time the shiny suited man has has been hit by the Neptunes a.k.a N*E*R*D (the hottest producers of the moment, working with the likes of Britney, Ludacris, Kelis, ODB, Jay-Z, Mystikal, Noreaga e.t.c.). Its amazing how the N*E*R*Ds use tunes similar to cartoons (not credited X-Men or Voltron but rather sounds like that of Tom and Jerry’s dum dum..dum) and make it the bomb. Hey yo! P.Diddy haters! Judge him for the music and not his personality. You can’t deny his talents with his catchy rhymes which brings the $benjamins flowing in millions. Can you beat that? He has never claimed to be a skilled rapper but an entertainer which he surely is.This is an excellent release to keep you all shakin ya asses. Peace. Nike Oguhjumelo


50 GRIND FEAT. THE POKEMON ALLSTARS Gotta Catch ‘Em All (Recognition)

NOT THAT I want to judge an audience, but I’d say that you have pretty low expectations for this. It’s described an ‘animated nu-metal’, i.e. looped guitar licks over chunky beats with random samples from kids’ fave Pokemon. Strangely enough, it’s not as vile as I thought it’d be: it’s bad, oh yes, it’s bad, but tolerable enough for a second listen, but after that is when “Pika-Pika-Chu” has ‘gotta be scratched by all’. Chris Faires


SINGER-SONGWRITER Beverly Knight wants to make it back again. That she is currently touring Europe with Jamiroquai perhaps explains the experimenting with various genres. This single showcases her ability to mix garage, ragga, and jungle...and a bit of reggae, all topped off with her sultry vocals. The product is a fast upbeat tempo with rhythm to match the lyrics. Not what I would expect from a Diva. Well, one man’s meat is another man’s poison. This one might make you get you into the groove but not me: soul sister, please stick to what you know best. Nothing as good as Greatest Day or Made It Back. Nike Oguhjumelo


seem limited to padding out yet another ghastly chill-out compilation. Very disappointing. Alex Macpherson

DELIRIOUS? I Could Sing of Your Love Forever (Furious)

RARELY IS a great laid-back track like this ever released. The music starts and you will just sit back and relax, listening to one of the best tracks of the year, which will go unnoticed by the general music audience. The track ends on a truly uplifting climax which will leave you feeling great after listening, so much so you will want to listen to it repeatedly. Paul Jones

FRAGMA Say That You’re Here (Sony)

PANTS! SAY That You’re Here is the kind of

TEENAGE HEART throb, drugged up bloater, rock star and now crooner, Robbie Williams’ career has taken many a twist and turn over the past decade, with this latest being perhaps the most unexpected. In the eyes of the public Robbie can do no wrong, so despite the fact that this half-baked duet with babe-of-themoment Nicole is not a patch on the Frank and Nancy Sinatra classic, it and the Swing When You’re Winning phenomena will doubtless ensure a very happy christmas for the Williams household. Rob Jackson

SUM 41 In Too Deep (Mercury)

ANOTHER TRACK which will be relegated to the consignment of chart pap done by another group trying to copy Offspring. This track is just too bland and will only appeal to American high school kids. It is obviously not aimed at a British market, so why

Sleeping with the fishes

it is released here is just beyond all comprehension. Avoid this at all costs. Paul Jones

SUPER FURRY ANIMALS It’s Not The End Of The World? (Sony)

FREAKY RESEMBLANCE to The Beatles here – a mixture of Something and maybe also Waterloo Sunset by the Kinks. Like unsalted vegetables, this song’s a bit bland. It starts well, then you get the sliding guitar riffs which add flavour. Then...well that’s it really, it’s just a song like the rest of them. Don’t worry Furries, It’s not the end of the world; you’ve just written a dull song. Katie Brunt

SKINNY Coming Up Roses (Cheeky)

DESPITE THE promising opening, a combination of plaintive lyrics and nasty flat vocals make Skinny’s new single, Coming Up Roses, positively painful to listen to. Trying, it would seem, to be some kind of anthem the song, it ends up like the warblings of a homeless drunk. An antidote to this, however, is the b-side Friday (Going Out) which has been blessed by the redeeming hand of Fatboy Norman Cook. The result is upbeat (thank God), which although is curiously a little reminiscent of Freak Power (!) at least leaves you feeling a little less suicidal than before. Katherine Moore

STARSAILOR Lullaby (Chrysalis)

‘LOVE IS Here,” Starsailor told us not so long ago. Aw. That’s nice, love. But sometimes it’s better to keep these things to yourself, by not making meandering pondery ballads to bore the ears off a nation. But nice boys that they are, they’ve returned to the airways to serenade us, this time with Lullaby, the point of which being to send us to sleep. Congratulations boys, you’ve........zzzzzzzzzzz. Maria Lane

FC KAHUNA Hayling (City Rockers) DESCRIBED BY Radio One’s “ever-cool” Emma B as “a big hug from your Mum on a dismal Monday”, this is not of the style previously known of FC Kahuna from the early nineties. In place of his previous breakbeat abandon comes a gentler, more subtle fusion of cymbals and vocals. Underlying a gorgeously melodious vocal lies covertly nestled reminders of former associations with somewhat bigger beats. Just beneath the surface of swaying harmony glimpses are caught of the smirky electronica we all loved so much. very much... Andrew Davidson

SEAFOOD Splinter (Infectious) SEAFOOD HAVE rather kindly provided their entire back catalogue on this single. This would be groovy, if only the reason wasn’t that almost every aspect of Splinter is lifted directly from another Seafood

song. They have also generously edited out the introduction, the only original bit of the song, the bastards. However, if you’ve never heard Seafood before, then it sounds like a beautiful mangled interpretation of the greatest hits of Idlewild and Sonic Youth. And you know you want some. John Widdop


IT’S A sad reflection on the record industry’s obsession with categorisation that the ‘world’ music pigeonhole exists at all; a clumsy and thoughtless label for the huge range of sounds to which our Western ears, conditioned to shite pop and indie-schmindie bollocks from day one, may not be accustomed. Together with Asian Dub Foundation and Natacha Atlas, Sawhney has been responsible for forcing these preconceptions to change; it’s unfortunate, then, that ‘Cold And Intimate’ is a somewhat anonymous, aimless track betraying nothing of his talent and whose aspirations


musicalbums DUNGEON FAMILY Even In Darkness (Arista)

THE CONCEPT of group as extended family is currently enjoying something of a renaissance, with Dungeon Family – Outkast and an indeterminate number of homies – following in the slipstream of collectives such as D12, Reprazent and So Solid Crew. Perhaps surprisingly, Even In Darkness is far from a mere bagatelle in the blossoming careers of André 3000 and Big Boi: there’s brilliance here in spades, and - avoiding a perennial problem with hip-hop LPs, Outkast’s own *Stankonia* in particular - an admirable lack of filler. Opener Crooked Booty has distinct party anthem potential, with a teasingly sparse intro segueing into a masterpiece of chunky retro beats and stabs of brass. Follow The Light grooves along slinkily and sexily, and on White Gutz, Big Boi’s lightning-speed verbal sparring with Bubba Sparxxx attains sonic perfection with ease. Throughout, Dungeon Family dip their many toes into subjects as diverse as American race relations and urban ‘agape’, but an overriding theme is that of creative necessity. “From the street corners of your brain each rap... is heart and soul” states one Witchdoctor on What Iz Rap?, an artistic manifesto of pure justification and belief. “We use our music to get by”, they declare elsewhere; on this form, they’ll get by just fine. Alex Macpherson

CREED Weathered

(Wind-up Records) THERE’S AN odd resonance surrounding bands that claim to be huge in the US, but don’t seem to replicate the same type of loyal fanbase in Britain. It just doesn’t seem to fill you with confidence. Previously tagged to such ‘greats’ as Hootie and the Blowfish and the ‘up and coming’ Dave Matthews band, it’s a phrase that screams dull middle of the road watered down middle aged crap. So Creed, according to their CD, are the biggest band in America, and with Weathered currently languishing at the top of the stateside charts, that would seem to be true, but the alarm bells just don’t stop ringing. Is this just another case of soft rock dysentery? Well yes and no. It all starts promisingly enough, the thundering guitars and Stone Temple Pilots/Pearl Jam grunge drawl vocals form a fearsome combination on openers Bullets and the RATM riff driven Freedom Fighter, and go great lengths to suggesting that the US record buying public does actually have some taste after all. But then, ooh dear, gone is the edgy and raw metal tinged song-writing, as Creed suddenly realise they are driving along the hard shoulder, and with a yank of the wheel, swerve back into the middle of the road. Who’s Got My Back? is the first sign of problems. A mixture of


D o n ’t w a n n a l e t y o u g o . . . FIVE Greatest Hits (RCA)


he break-up of one of the biggest selling groups in the country just before Christmas could be seen by many as a cynical marketing ploy to make as much money as possible out of a greatest hits album. And they’d be right – a quick glance at the tracklist tells you it’s a guaranteed money-spinner. The album mainly consists of Five’s singles, which most fans will already own, but the ‘useful’ addition of the oft played in Dylans Five Megamix and the World Cup 2002 remix

Despite reservations about being sucked into an evil capitalist con, the fact remains that Five did make some bloody good tunes of Keep on Movin’ will mean that completists will already be begging their parents for this CD for Christmas. However, despite reservations about being sucked into an evil capitalist con, the fact remains that Five did make some bloody good tunes. Got the Feelin’ is the song that every summer should be set to, Let’s Dance is undeniably funky and Keep On Movin’ can’t fail to get you dancing like it’s a Saturday night. Admittedly like most manufactured bands, the fans have to take the rough with the smooth, and the shortage of ‘hits’ means that the frankly embarrassing Inspector Gadget theme tune is included. Nonetheless, the album is a reminder that when they get it right, the British can take on the Indian chants, echoing guitar and epic build ups, the likes of which have not been seen since Page and Plant stalked the earth. As the album progresses the heavy guitars and metal edge try to fight back on Signs, but it’s a lost cause, and soon the album is dominated by deep, meaningful lyrics and powerful rock ballads sung by a bloke who begins to sound increasingly less like Eddy Vedder, and worryingly more like Ronan Keating. Ultimately Weathered can be considered a well produced, well written album, but only in the same way that adults consider a glass of wine every now and again as sensible. Compared to going out and getting battered off your face on some really awe inspiring music, Weathered is just a little too grown up and sensible. Rob Jackson

LUDACRIS Word Of Mouf (Label)

THE SELF-TITLED ‘Abominable Ho-man’ returns with this, his all-new bling-blinging, dialogue peppered, rude-boy rap album Word of Mouf. If this latest offering is anything to go by though, his fame in America is unlikely to be

5IVE: we weep at their departure might of American manufactured kings like the Backstreet Boys and NSync and win. If you only buy one Christmas party album this year, Five’s Greatest Hits should be at the top of your list. Sarah Hodson

replicated in the UK. The album is on the whole bland, unoriginal and devoid of any of the catchy inventiveness of superior genre-mates Dr. Dre, Eminem, Nelly and Xzibit. Often quickfire rapping builds up to disappointing anti-climatic, unmelodic and frankly boring choruses. However, through all 18 tracks beats are on the whole accomplished courtesy of quality production from the likes of Timbaland and Shondrae. On numerous occasions the camp 80’s synth mini-melodies that were manipulated so well on Missy Elliott’s Timbaland produced last album are employed here, but seem tiresome and unimaginative in comparison. A real waste of a useful tool for spicing up jizz like this. The production team give us a couple of slices of funk-pie to break up the formula (Growing Pains, Area Codes) but this slight variance in format hardly counts for originality. For all this lack of razzmatazz, Ludacris still remains a capable rapper. His words are perfectly clear and pronounced, but unfortunately offer little in lyrical innovativeness. Bitches, riches and violence seem to be the key themes, “I kick niggas in the ass, reboot ‘em like laptops”, “I’ve got hos in different area codes” and, “Can you believe she’s been

Who let the cats out? KITTIE Oracle (Artemis)

‘RAAAAAAAAAAARRRRRRGGGGGHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!’ Oh yes: it’s the return of Kittie, the middle-class Canadian teenage girls (Mercedes, Morgan and Talena) with a penchant for Cradle Of Filth musical stylings. Now trimmed to a threesome, here we have a ‘truly’ atomic Kitten. This Kitten doesn’t have airbrushed fur and limp ballads; they are, in the immortal words of Daphne & Celeste, ‘gross girls’, and prefer to roar rather than purr. Over headache-inducing feedback and fascinating, only-slightly-out-ofrhythm drumming, too. Rather like the aforementioned Filth, enjoying Kittie is dependent on assuming that they’re taking the piss; unlike them, though, there’s a lurking, ever-present suspicion that lyrics such as “Can you hear the blood in your veins/calling out your demise?” may be genuinely intended to scare. It’s far from successful, as the only possible reaction is to giggle uncontrollably. And although the sheer comedy value maintains momentum for a good ten minutes, after eleven identical tracks – the last of which, Pink Lemonade, is something of an exercise in endurance at eleven minutes long – it begins to get rather tiresome. Kittie were important in proving that women and heavy metal were not mutually exclusive; having done that, there’s a distinct lack of reason for them to continue to stick around. Alex Macpherson


KITTIE: mee-oww

waiting so long, to get a grade-A certified schlong” among the choicest. Mildly amusing if taken with minimal levels of seriousness, misogynistic and immature if not. Ludacris has proven that he offers no more than any of the other mis-spelt names in the ever-increasing rap section in HMV. In fact he offers considerably less than most. Jamie Fullerton

BEN OKAFOR Coffee With Lazarus (Plankton Records)

FROM THE title’s juxtaposition of modern culture with African religious culture, and the album cover depicting native Nigerian Okafur, sitting opposite an empty seat in a decidedly quaint English coffee shop, complete with Golden Virginia pouch and logo-adorned lighter, you can instantly feel the warning signs beginning to flash “aaah... modernisation!” But this is not by any means a weak attempt to revitalise the reggae sound in the 21st century. For a start it isn’t UB40. Taking influences from a bizarre range of sources, ranging from the obvious (Jimmy Cliff, The Wailers) through to the baffling (The Rolling Stones), Okafor has done competent job of achieving a moderately western sound to compliment the native African sounds he was brought up on learned to live by. This is best achieved on the third track See Me Now, a song serving as a record for the loss of a friend’s wife, a delicate acoustic and slide guitar-led ballad which is the sort of thing Paul Simon can only dream of. The majestic closing track Africa Will Be also achieves this status of sounding both beautifully spiritual and pleasantly contemporary. Unfortunately a few of the songs in between collapse somewhat under the weight of carrying too many good ideas: for instance Give Food, a song based on a story from the New Testament, is slightly over ambitious for the framework the album tends to keep to. Reggae music these days has a highly limited commercial appeal, which is a pity as it has as much right to exist and outsell the majority of other genres these days, and apart from the most recent Best of Bob Marley and the Wailers CD that probably came out last Christmas (and probably this Christmas, too) or that turgid unnecessary remix of Electric Avenue, there have not been any major chart successes. Ben Okafor at this stage doesn’t really sound like he is going to make colossal dents commercially, but it is still a healthy album with few low points and slightly more high points. This is music for staring out of windows and dreaming to. I think you just need the right window. John Widdop




Albums of the year!

It’s almost the end of the year (hooray!), it’s the last issue of Gair Rhydd (boo!), so MUSIC have put on their thinking santa hats and come up with our favourite albums of 2001. Here’s what we came up with, (hey-if the NME can do it, why can’t we?) and we didn’t just reel out the obvious bestsellers... (handbags away girls) TORI AMOS Strange Little Girls (Atlantic) SINGER-SONGWRITER extraordinaire Tori Amos crawls inside the heads of men from Eminem to Lou Reed, deconstructing and reinterpreting their songs and words with compelling results. Amos tackles her themes - violence, repression, power, perspective with passion and intelligence, resulting in a set of elaborate, unsettling transformations. Whoever said rock was dumbing down? Alex Macpherson TOM MCRAE Tom Mcrae (db) THE SINISTER yet enchanting beauty of Mcrae’s eponymous debut makes you wonder how just a man’s voice and a cello can sound so fantastic. He constantly sounds as if he’s about to break into tears, but thankfully doesn’t and continues to wail mournfully about guns, lightening and living on the moon. Perfect for walking around and listening to on your personal stereo when you’re in a bad mood. Maria Thomas MULL HISTORICAL SOCIETY Loss (Blanco Y Negro) WHO WOULD have thought that such musical magicianship could derive from a small island off the coast of Scotland? Well it did. Colin MacIntyre has proved that acoustically based melodies can still be vehicles for truckloads of originality, especially when beefed up with glockenspiels, moogs and the odd cherubic choirboy. Jamie Fullerton EELS Souljacker (Dreamworks) Souljacker by Eels saw them turn themselves from a light pop band that used brass and strings into a full on rock band. The album moves from blues (Souljacker pt1) to thoughtful acoustic songs (Woman Driving Man Sleeping). E surprises us yet again, and grows a cool beard. Anthony Lloyd FOUR TET Pause (Domino) IN THE year where acoustic became the new glo-stick, Kieran Hebden surpassed all previous good form by deliv-


ering a sublime album of kalideoscopic memories of childhood days, blissful sunsets and crisp winter mornings. Chilled, but not cheesy and with cracking chunky beats too. Stunning. Andy Parsons PROPAGANDHI Today’s Empires,Tomorrows Ashes (Fat Wreak Records) OPENING WITH a sample of an East Timor refugee protest singer, and closing with the greatest guitar flourish of all time, the third album by Canadian punks Propagandhi defies all boundaries normally associated with the modern day punk, and sends you on a thirty minute descent to the very depths of hatred for humanity. This is not punk, or rock. Its simply a statement of the way the world is decaying in the year 2001. Beautiful. John Widdop ELBOW Asleep In The Back (V2) AN INTENSE, emotionally raw journey into the lives of these 20something Mancblokes, Asleep In The Back was an accomplished debut for Elbow. Set to a backing of Radiohead and Talk Talk influenced melancholy rock, this deserved all the Mercury Music Prize acclaim and more. BASEMENT JAXX Rooty (XL) WHO WOULD have thought that the Jaxx’s second album could live up to expectations created by banging house party

anthem debut Remedy? Who else has ever had their first two albums nominated for Mercury Music Awards? What other album features such amazing singles as Bollywood pop song Romeo or nutbag anthem Where’s Your Head At? Rooty makes people dance like fools. Incredible scenes. Maria Lane

known Chicago based musician, Andrew Bird. A fantastic mixture of styles from across the last 50 years, rock ‘n’ roll riffing, smokey jazz, country and garage rock all combine to produce a staggering collection of songs, filled with wit and emotion. Ignore this at your peril. Rob Jackson

MUSE Origin of Symmetry (Mushroom) A TRULY spectacular album, from start to end. At the fore-front of prog-rock, Bellamy’s mighty piano accompaniments along with his distinctive breathless voice, make for one mother-fucker of an album. Best track has to be Space Dimentia; Rachmaninov in a rock tune is just pure genius. Katie Brunt

THE BLAKE BABIES God Bless the Blake Babies (Rounder Records)

NICK LOWE The Convincer (Proper Records) STRONG CHALLENGES from Nick Cave and Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy but title goes to fiftysomething Nick Lowe for the album of his career. The underappreciated legend croons over a beautifully crafted collection of country influenced pop. Despite his tales of loss, he retains a magnificent white quiff, which alone is worth a prize. The Convincer shows true maturity. Nick McDonald ANDREW BIRDS BOWL OF FIRE The Swimming Hour (Ryko) THE THIRD and most progressive album from little

JULIANA HATFIELD and John Strohm’s high school band, reunited after 10 years and still just as rockin’ - only less amateur. Their songs are as strong as ever, from a band who have timelessly encapsulated the Massachusetts collegiate-rock sound. Not forgetting Hatfield’s trademark sugary vocals (and a guest appearance from Evan Dando) it’s like they never stopped. I for one am glad they didn’t. Laura Sykes ARNOLD Bahama (Poptones) PART-TIME muso’s achieve a sound, accomplished far beyond many of their ‘professional’ counterparts. Indulgent blistering melodies and undertones from the perky to the melancholic, bathing in a sun-drenched shimmer of countrified pop is Bahama. Lyrical diversity ranging from the intense to the nonsense completes the ramblings of the subtle masterpiece. Absolutely marvellous. Gemma Curtis CRANES Future Songs (Dadaphonic) SULTRY, MOODY, cacophonous angelic delicacy, the fragile beauty of female vocals quite distanced yet similar in the mechanical madness to The White Stripes. Future Songs is a dysfunctional, oceanic wave of Massive Attack techno and heart rendering Portishead pseudo-hip-hop folklore white trash. Stunningly beautiful. Lee Davies ROOTS MANUVA Run Come Save Me (Big Dada) THE SECOND long player from Londoner Rodney Smith took the addictive hooks, bouncing beats and witty lyrics of the Roots Manuva sound to a new level. Standout tracks such as Join The Dots (with Tuna from Jurassic 5) and the squelching bass of Witness (1 Hope) are guaranteed to get you shaking your booty, and put Rodders as the true king of UK Hip-Hop. Jack Hobhouse


musictoptensof2001 Singles of the Year

SFA: “er..well i’d er...(mumbling scenes)...

DESTINY’S CHILD - Bootylicious MISSY ELLIOT - Get Ur Freak On I MONSTER - Daydream In Blue KYLIE MINOGUE - Can’t Get You Out Of My Head MOGWAI - My Father My King ROGER SANCHEZ - Another Chance SIMIAN - One Dimension THE STROKES - Last Nite SUPER FURRY ANIMALS - Juxtaposed With U WEEZER - Hash Pipe

Best Newcomer

Worst Singles

15 Band of the Year

ANDREW WK - Party Hard ASH - Burn Baby Burn ATOMIC KITTEN - Eternal Flame THE CURE - Cut Here MEL B - Lullaby DJ OTZI - Hey Baby! DJ PIED PIPER - Do You Really Like It? STEREOPHONICS - Have A Nice Day STEREOPHONICS - Mr Writer WYCLEF JEAN - Wish U Were Here

Best Live Act


‘PHONICS: “but,’s not fair...(tantrum scenes)...

Best Local Band


Mingers in Music



TURIN BRAKES: “er...thanks... (pussy-indie scenes)...

KING ADORA: “just because you’re jealous of our God like physiques and model looks...(blind scenes)...



TEFLON MONKEY: “i’d like to thank the Furries...(namedropping scenes)...

MUSE: “we are God, obviously...(arrogant scenes)...

PJ: “oh, er, i’m just a girl from Yeovil...(humble scenes)...

Best of the rest...




Stomach churning scenes Arts scare themselves witless with a gruesome and gutwrenching night out at the Circus of Horrors in the New Theatre



HATEVER YOU WERE doing last week you cannot have escaped the knowledge that the Circus of Horrors was in town. I plucked up my courage, donned the eyeliner and went down to the New Theatre to see what the hype was all about. As I entered the foyer I was greeted by an accordion playing Russian air hostess wearing fishnets and a panty liner stuck to her foot who asked me my name. When I replied she gave me a particularly dodgy look and spat “I know Charlottes, they bitch.” Pre-show entertainment my friend assured me. I wish

I’d gone with my senses and ran before it was too late. The show is a complete Goth fest loosely based on the story of a teenage virgin, Regan, who is offered as a human sacrifice by the evil Dr Haze. 120 years later (i.e. the second act) she seeks her revenge. Dr Haze, the nightmarish Alice Cooper/David Bowie esque ringmaster, opens the show with a song ‘Welcome to the Freak Show’. It is a lively number, and so it should be considering they are the ‘undead’, but has disturbing resonances of Robbie’s ‘Let Me Entertain You’. The song sets the trend for the rest of the music of the show, not particularly original and not particularly good. The three lead vocalists, Dr Haze, the gypsy and the bearded lady are a clear rip-off of The Rocky Horror Show’s legendary Riff Raff, Magenta and Columbia. They are twisted in their sadistic longing but do not hold the charm or the humour of O’Brien’s characters. However the show didn’t set itself out to be a true Lloyd Webber so onto other things. The first act is a collage of weird and wacky acts displaying the talents of Haze’s crew. A vampire who can squeeze into a jar, Gary Stretch who can pull his neck skin over his face, the wasp boy and girl who are immune to pain, and too many more. The acts are purely grotesque and have the allure of a horrific car crash where the victims are laying in the wreckage, laughing. For it is not the macabre nature of the show that is most disturbing, but the sadistic enjoyment the cast gets from performing the acts. They relish the pain and the more the audience squirms the more exuberant they become. Thankfully the second half lends itself more to spectacle. Preacher Boy and Regan’s love story is symbolised by some amazingly dangerous acrobatics. Sceptical of the show as I was I have to admit it was all pretty fascinating. Unfortunately they didn’t know when they were on to a good thing and the show culminates in some tired old magic tricks that are too clichéd to wow, and electrical stunts that reminded me vaguely of a year nine physics lessons. This is finally topped when Dr Haze defies Regan’s attempt at bloody revenge and jumps out his coffin with the most awful, awful thing in the show: his own rendition of ‘I Will Survive’. Whether or not the whole show works as a stage play is debatable. Some of the gruesome acts would benefit from a more intimate arena, but then the acrobatics seem affected by the limited space of the theatre stage.

Whatever its faults the show is not boring. In fact it is a thoroughly entertaining night out. Its black anarchic power shocks and had the audience spellbound throughout. It was

It’s not the macabre nature of the show that is most disturbing, but the sadistic enjoyment the cast gets from performing the acts only as I left the theatre that I recovered my senses enough to ask WHY? Why why would you want to do that? Why would you want to hang ten-pound bells from your nipples? Why would you want to fly round the stage suspended only by your hair? For the love of God (or the devil) WHY? Charlotte Lyon

MARK THOMAS Sherman Theatre


ark Thomas is the ultimate gobby school boy who just hasn’t grown up yet. Full of swearwords and dirty jokes, bragging about how he once kept a bevy of drunk lawyers and accountants at the London Comedy Store happy with a supply of second-rate willy jokes, he started off his show in his own inimitable style. But unlike many gobby school boys, this one is a raging political human and environmental rights activist who makes a noise about stuff that matters and actually makes a difference. Thomas is something of a unique figure on the British comedy scene in that he combines serious facts and figures with effortlessly funny commentary about his latest campaigns. This is a guy who really knows his stuff and as a result his knowledge of international politics as well as the shenanigans that go on behind the scenes is truly impressive. He could never run the risk of being labelled a self-righteous show-off because he’s genuinely passionate about what he does and surprisingly sentimental when it comes to talking about his friends and the people who’ve helped him in his work. His show at the Sherman did have some sort of structure but he didn’t seem to want to consciously stick to it. What we got was a Mark Thomas trade-mark diatribe. It was an intensely personal production; shocking, challenging, emotive, and above all,

inspirational. I was left feeling like a right royal lazy person after hearing about the fact that Thomas and his chums used the power of free speech to boycott the AGM of a multinational company and precipitate the collapse of plans to build a dam in Turkey that would displace over a million Kurdish people. He’s not your average comedian by any stretch of the imagination. The audience was left stunned by his grasp of international issues that many of us have no idea about. Human rights abuses in Turkey against the oppressed Kurdish people are often swept under the carpet by politicians, despite being something that needs to be addressed on a much wider scale than at present. Thomas desperately wants this to happen. He brought his show to a heart-stopping climax with what can only be described as the ‘rant of all rants’. During

It was an intensely personal production; shocking, challenging, emotive, and above all, inspirational this his horror at the things he’s come to know about was palpable and and coupled with his talent for straight-forward oratory the audience was brought to its feet with heart-felt applause. The rumour is that a CD will be available of this tour. I urge you to buy it and listen to it with an open mind. Thomas says things everyone should hear. He challenges the political status quo with clarity and independent wit and is one of the most potent comic voices of this generation. LaDonna Hall

artsreview of the year


Best of Arts 2001 Artist of 2001 – Scott Clark

WE HAPPENED purely by chance on Scott Clark’s exhibition in the Atlantic Coffee Company shop on City Road, and were thrilled to discover a veritable treasure trove of fine artistry. We hastily got hold of his phone number and summoned him to our fourth floor media penthouse, with a couple of his piccies in tow, and the next thing we knew they were gracing the cover of Grip. His inspiring images, exploring themes of ownership, lifestyle and aesthetics, mean that he is unequivocally the gair rhydd artist of the year 2001. Our reviewer Mat Croft was suitably impressed by the whole laid back atmosphere of the cafe, which was the perfect setting for Scott’s equally relaxing piccies. Scott’s photos are still on show in the Atlantic Coffee shop, accompanied by other collections.

Drama of 2001 – The Real Thing

Opera of 2001 – Beatrice and Benedict

WE WERE blown away by the fantastic set, the delectible costumes and the contemporary love story (boy meets girl, boy doesn’t want girl, friends match make boy and girl) in the Welsh National Opera’s production of Beatrice and Benedict at the New Theatre in March, and we unhesitatingly crown it the gair rhydd opera of the year 2001. Loosely based on Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing, in true comic fashion, we laughed our way back to Sicily thanks to the conductor’s selfless piss-taking. Our reviewer loved the way he was willing to mock both himself, his choir and the Welsh in general – St David is given the enviable title of the patron saint of male voice choirs. Acting on his own drunkenness, the audience willingly laughed away at his endearing farcical comedy.

Dance of 2001 – The New Primitive

NEIL PEARSON charmed the socks off us when he graced the New Theatre in October, as the lead male in Tom Stoppard’s The Real Thing, and consequently this wins the highly coveted gair rhydd drama of 2001. While convincing us that the dilemmas re-enacted on stage were more than relevant to young couples today, we were also awestruck by the quality of the acting. A post-performance talk back session was the icing on the cake, as it gave us the opportunity to ask those all important questions like ‘Do you want to come for a drink after?’. And he did as well. Awesome man.

ALL ASPECTS of the Japan 2001 expositions were fascinating, but the gair rhydd arts desk had no difficulty in finding a winner for the dance act of 2001. Gekidan Kaitaisha’s ByeBye: The New Primitive was more challenging than your average theatre production, but its exploration of new dance techniques and alternative lighting and costumes allowed us a fuller understanding of Japanese culture. Alice, our intrepid reviewer, was never allowed to sit back and enjoy the show – her neck was aching and her brain was exhausted after the two hour show. And yet although the director of this show claims that it was a “Theatre of Death’, Alice found by contrast that she had witnessed such a display of existence at its most raw and absolute. She was left questioning the very rudimentary processes that keep us alive; breathing and the nervous system. Provocative art like this doesn’t come along every time, but when it does, its great that we are brave enough to confront it and learn from what it tells us about ourselves and other cultures.

Christmas crackers for all the family Arts gives you a round up of all the arty goings on over the festive season, so you can feel that little bit more cultural this Christmas


RTS PRESENT the equivalent of the fairy on your Christmas tree to get yourselves in a festive mood. The Welsh College are performing the choral work St Nicholas by Benjamin Britten at St. David’s Hall on Thursday 13th at 1.05pm. It promises to be a varied event, using choirs from across the board, and is the Christmas culmination of the close links between St. David’s Hall and our excellent neighbours, the Welsh College of Music and Drama. Contact the box office on 029 2087 8444 for tickets at £4 a head. ACT ONE have a tiny bit of competition for their panto punters, as the New Theatre are putting on their very own fun-packed show. Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, starring Red Dragon’s Emma Vignet as the Clar Voyant, but who is easily outshone by Sooty, is on show from 15th December right until 26th January. There are no excuses now – this promises a fabulous supporting cast and fun for every member of your family. What’s preventing you then, from telephoning the box office on 029 2087 8889 and getting your tickets, costing from £7 a head. THE SHERMAN theatre is the best place to find Christmas

theatre antics to amuse your smallest family members over the holidays. They are playing host to two children’s classics, Roald Dahl’s James and the Giant Peach (which runs until the beginning of January) and an adaptation of The Enormous Crocodile. These productions are full of laughter, music and considerable acting skill, and have received accolades of praise from all the little brats that have seen them already. Contact the Sherman theatre on 029 2064 6009 for more information. CONTEMPORARY TEMPORARY Artspace provide a very welcome relief from the stresses of Christmas with Comfy. This installation art is described as a “place in the city to take refuge from the season of goodwill and to take part in events that encourage discussion, play and the exchange of ideas”. Events began on 1st December, with a night hosted by DJ Nicodemus, and subsequent artists include Chris Evans, with other events run by Annabel Other and Jon Green and Kevin Potter. For more details contact g39 on Mill Lane, or visit their website


g gamesreviews


ZZap! It’s a smash

VIRTUA TENNIS 2 (DC) Sega/ Hitmaker

available, with the timing and power more important than ever. The timing affects the power and type of shot – press too early, and the ball will just bounce off your raquet, press at the peak and HE ORIGINAL Virtua Tennis became a you should be able to smack it past almost stable part of life in the Games anyone. household sometime last year. Then, it The characters move quicker and fall over less was the best computerised version of tennis ever than in the sluggish sprites in the original, but this made, with realistic fully 3D depictions of players, seems to be because they're slightly smaller. The an easy two button control mechanism that even player animations are better – it's more common Valley girls could use and a mini-game-tastic one to hit shots over your shoulder running backwards player mode. There wasn't much that could be or between your legs, just like Bahrami. The faulted, although there were certain quirks – the graphics have been polished so that Tim Henman computer would tend to draw you into a smash doesn't look like a dishevelled zombie anymore, making it much easier to pull off, it suffered from and most of the avatars are photorealistic and the occasional slowdown in four player mode, and sometimes the shots seemed too accurate to recognisable, apart from Alexandra Stevenson, who isn't famous anyway. The presentation has be true. But would VT2 become a remix, a slight been re-done in the style of a TV presentation jiggling of code as Fifa is, year on year, or like with logos in the corner, in front of replays and a most films would it be worse than the original? jazzed up menu screen. But then I played VT2, and all became well. It The arcade mode has changed into a isn't a dramatic difference, but it's been tweaked tournament mode for up to four players plus and tested to truly become a step above most computer controlled players can enter, but the sports games. It shades the original into the biggest change has been to the excellent single shallow arcade conversion it really is. player world circuit mode. The graphics have been Instead of choosing a polished so that Tim Henman player, you create your doesn't look like a dishevelled own. Equality rules state that a man and a woman zombie must be created and their avatars designed. The designs are a bit The changes are small but significant. Firstly – limited, compared to PSO, but a change is a woo-hoo! – you can play with girls. Venus, change. The actual World Circuit has been Serena, Jelana, and five 'close 'friends'. There's radically restructured. Before, it was a case of eight boys as well, Tiger Tim, Rafter, etc. Old man playing minigames to gain money as a diversion Jim Courier has been replaced by super Swede Magnus Norman. More importantly the control has from the tournaments or a way practising your serving, volleying skills etc. In VT2, your player changed – as in Mario Tennis there's now one starts with no skills – they can hardly run, barely button for top spin, another to slice, and one more manage to get the ball over the net and generally to lob. There's a more diverse range of shots


don't know their arse from their elbow. What the minigames do now is train your character up from scratch so that you can feel the effect of the training in the gradual increase of their ability from zero to hero. It personalises the game. So is it perfect? No, unfortunately. The music has changed – before it there were rocktastic riffs and licks, which have been replaced by run-ofthe-mill electronica. It's very nondescript and even worse, it sucks. It's difficult to tell if a minigame has been completed – you seem to just have to repeat the task and then at some unspecified point it will change. It's still got some quirks – you appear to be able to win a point better if the

The brothers gonna work it out

points which you can then use to teach him new abilities. Half the game really is about your interactions with Moigle, who manages to be a pretty solid AI-controlled character. Unfortunately, he is also controlled by the narrative of the game and will often flat out refuse to participate in any activity before you’re at the right point of the plot to do so. This can lead to quite a bit of frustration when your steady progress grinds to a halt because you’re suddenly without a clue what you’re meant to do next, or lack a certain item needed to solve the only puzzle open to you. At this point you’ll either have to amuse yourself playing Moigle’s fairly repetitive games or (my favourite) picking up the extremely cute but evil kitten and throwing it into the river.

The definitive guide to the websites that matter The biggest e-card site on the net. Send Xmas and New Year greetings to all your friends and loved ones


Floigan Brothers hopes to take cartoon wackiness and transform it into a game

Where’s your web @?

FLOIGAN BROTHERS (DC) Sega NE OF the last AAA, high-level releases for the Dreamcast, Floigan Brothers hopes to take cartoon wackiness and transform it into a game. It perfectly captures the essence of a cartoon, right down to the two main protagonists, the small but sharp Hoigle (with Sonic’s voice from Sonic Adventure) and the lumbering, dumb, oafish Moigle. However, unlike many cartoons, Moigle is not nearly as dumb as he looks, and his occasional spark of intelligence makes him all the more loveable. At the start of the game, Moigle is working on a secret project, and it’s up to you, as Hoigle, to help him find the seven parts Moigle needs which are hidden around the junkyard which is the game’s setting. The assorted bits of scrap and amusing pieces of jerry-built machinery add a lot of colour to the game, and also provide a perfect setting for many of the puzzles. Before long, though, the Evil Baron Malodorous shows up overhead in his airship and sends his army of evil cats in to disrupt your quest. At first, the game is highly enjoyable as you learn the controls and the layout of the fairly small game world. Moigle wanders around doing his own thing until he gets bored, at which point he’ll come bounding up and demanding you play a game with him. Not only does playing games with him make him happy, but also earns you

computer has gone ahead, the computer players seem to miss easy shots going past them even on high levels, and it's tricky to judge the height of a ball in the air. But you still can't play more than a whole set or control the replays, two functions that are standard in most other triple-A sports games. But who wants to be perfect? Virtua Tennis 2 is the best tennis game ever. Although it will come out for the PS2 sometime next year, don't wait. The Dreamcast joypad is much more comfortable and after several hours trying to beat Tommy Hass your joints will need all the comfort they can get. Game, set, match to Sega. Chris Faires Bizarre but true inventions. Real inventions that are made to be useless. All genius, mind THE funniest site on the net Other niggles include the extremely poor camera system, which managed to get itself caught either inside part of the scenery or, in one terrifying situation, under the ‘floor’. You can rotate it whenever you like, but never quite fast enough. The controls are also extremely frustrating. The developers have unwisely attached far too many actions to the A button. Its default function is ‘punch’, and given you select things from the ‘speak’ menu with it whilst standing next to Moigle, it’s all to easy to ask him to play tag whilst simultaneously punching him in the stomach. Another puzzle, which requires to precisely navigate along pipes before punching a switch at the end, is again made far too difficult because if you push A before Hoigle has come to a complete stop, he’ll do a dive and go flying off the edge. The same niggle was true during the battle sequence where you must pick up fizzling bombs and either hand them to Moigle or throw them away, as often I’d either dive past the bomb, or punch fruitlessly above it. And in one unforgivable instance, the game actually froze (and I had been playing since the beginning and hadn’t saved yet!). The freeze wasn’t a problem, though, because I was able to play back up to where I’d been before in a fraction of the time, which highlights the game’s serious lack of length. After playing for only about two or three hours, I’d gotten five of the seven secret project parts, and knew exactly where to find the sixth. Had I kept playing, I could have probably finished the game in a day. So, while it lasts, the game is extremely entertaining, challenging, and above all, fun. Unfortunately, you’re not really likely to play it again after you’ve finished it once, and it won’t take you long to get to that point. And, for the price of a full price game, that’s not really good enough. Steve Webber Wondered where GR’s own Tv guide gets its inspiration? The TV show rocks. AKA The institute of Official Cheer, home to the wacky and the downright strange Spoof fundamentalist Christian site Drudge broke the Lewinsky story on his site. It now has over 3 million hits a day Where you can buy games online Or here Excellent games site/ forum boards

g gamesreviews


Get your fear on SILENT HILL 2 (PS2) Konami £44.99


REPARE TO break out the nappies (you might need them!) as possibly the scariest, sickest game ever hits the shelves just in time for Christmas. If you thought it couldn’t get any better (or worse) than Resident Evil then you must not have played the first Silent Hill. For those of you that haven’t, here’s a quick history lesson. Silent Hill 1 was released soon after Resident Evil and the survival horror genre took a swift

turn. The game was based around an ordinary man, not a weapon-ready Special Forces person, so the emphasis switched from guns and fear to pure psychological thriller. The scene was the small town of Silent Hill, a secluded, sparse town inhabited by almost everything but people – try to imagine hell on earth and you’re nearly there. In this episode you play as James Sanderland, a man struck by tragedy: three years ago his wife died at the hands of a mystery illness, and today he receives a letter from her telling him she is in Silent Hill and

JAMES: Anyone got a light?

This is football? 90 MINUTES (DC) Sega


H, FOOTBALL, that great sport and tradition that far too often sees all of Cardiff City centre shut down and the Prince of Wales jammed to the rafters with unshaven, sweaty men all shouting in unison while isolated students nervously clutch their dates and regret going anywhere near town. You have to smile at the irony that Sega spent literally its entire European marketing budget sponsoring football teams, in spite of the fact the Dreamcast itself never once was home to a decent football game. Enter 90 Minutes, so named because that is about how long you’ll ever play it. Quite why Sega thinks it can make football games is unclear – virtually all of their past attempts, from World Wide Soccer on the Saturn to Virtua Striker two years ago have been monstrous abominations. So fire up 90 Minutes, and be somewhat impressed by the large selection of teams, and the cool swirly background. Enjoy this, because it’s all downhill from here. For my first match, I selected Aston Villa vs. Leeds – the blocky, cardboard-thin crowds rippled like the surface of

Often after a goal kick, my team would just stand stock still, watching the ball land ten feet away and be swept up by the opposing team. Unless you are directly controlling a player, they will make no attempt to tackle the other team, preferring instead to just run mindlessly behind them. The overall shoddiness is just unbearable. During a throw in, your team-mates prance camply on the spot. The commentary is appaling, with statements like "The two opposing teams are playing against each other". At one point an opposing player stole the ball and then ran straight at the goal line and out of bounds, tripping amusingly as he crossed the line. My second game, Scotland vs. Wales, which took place in a Then came the kickoff, or reasonable Millennium rather the ‘nudge the ball as Stadium likeness, went all the way to a penalty shoot-out gently as possible to the because neither side could score. The ball was either bloke next to you’ kicked straight ahead and between the keeper’s legs, to the side missing a lake as the two gormless teams walked the net entirely, or slightly to the left, prompting robotically onto the pitch. Then came the kickoff, the keeper to hop sideways and fall over, before or rather the ‘nudge the ball as gently as turning to look curiously at the ball nestling at possible to the bloke next to you’. the back of the net. Your players blatantly refuse to respond to you 90 Minutes is easily one of the worst football hammering the controller, so changing direction games I’ve ever played. Even EA’s FIFA RTWC must be planned at least 2 seconds in advance. ’98 is vastly superior. With Dreamcast releases The same is true of passing and kicking, which drying up you don’t have much choice, but be means you have virtually no hope of ever sure to make the right one, and not buy this avoiding the defenders. Meanwhile, the AI of the game. Steve Webber computer-controlled players is just shocking.

begging him to come get her. James finds the town wrapped in thick fog and teeming with bad things. It’s your job to guide him through the town solving puzzles and venturing into the bowels of this world (while trying to retain the contents of you own). The graphics use true 3D environments, as opposed to RE’s 2D pre rendered scenery, to give all the gory detail that you watch late night ‘bravo’ for. But it’s not just what you see that creates the terror you experience, but what you hear. The first game became famous for its atmospheric use of sound to create monsters that move swiftly behind you, then creep up slowly getting louder before pouncing on you from inches away, and babies that you TOILETS: Signifiers can hear crying but never see. Combined with of a gritty game the shroud of fog this game becomes more than the survival horror it used to be labelled if you don’t like horror then you will have to as and has evolved its own genre of psychological terror. To experience it full play it play this out of pure morbid fascination. It is instantly addictive and will continuously scare at night, with the lights off, the door locked, volume up and hide The scene was the small town under the duvet. The puzzles you of Silent Hill, town inhabited encounter lead on to by almost everything but each other and need to people – try to imagine hell on be completed, linearly, to progress and some of earth and you’re nearly there them get quite sick. One puzzle involves you the hell out of you. In addition to the multiple retrieving a mans wallet, think about how endings possible and you definitely get your Renton chasing the suppositories in moneys worth. What are you waiting for? Go Trainspotting and you’ll get the idea. on. Buy it. Chris Pietryka If you like horror you’ll love Silent Hill 2, but

Hand of hod LMA Manager 2002 (PS2) Codemasters


EMEMBER WHEN Celtic finally reclaimed the Scottish league from the ever-dominating, almost invincible Rangers, screaming in Ray Winstone style ‘Ooo’s the daddy naaa?!’ Well Codemasters would have us believe a distinct parallel is occurring in the world of football management games with LMA Manager 2002 threatening to topple the mighty Championship Manager series. So, are they talking bollocks? Is it simply a bit of butt-kissing publicity? Or do they have a point? No, they don’t… But hey, this feisty little wannabe is still worth a look. Publications such as Gamesmaster and Official Playstation Magazine have hailed LMA as the new king of management sims. This is primarily because its been labelled as something of a pioneer in making such games both console-friendly and user-friendly, while maintaining a high quality of gameplay and, most importantly, realism. The game is seen to help un-geekify (its kosher Gamespage techno-jargon, honest) the anal, anorakwearing image of football management games (not my opinion!). There’s no doubt that to a novice the vast, intimidating array of statistics in CM makes the game difficult to get into. LMA’s straightforward (some might say linear) gaming interface, menu screens and the ease in which you can toggle between tactics, training, transfers, finance etc work well. On the whole it covers all aspects of management to the degree that you feel you are in complete control of the football club and that your decisions make a difference. I could rant on about

the various things you can do in the game but, bar the control you have over the expansion and style of your stadium, LMA covers everything CM does, only less well. It lacks the sheer detail (supposedly nerdy) and the player database pales in comparison to its competitor. What makes the game fun to play, perhaps the only advantage it has over CM, is that you see the matches unfold in 3D graphics (though admittedly dodgy ones at that). The ability to bark out orders from the touchline while watching your team dominate or capitulate in a match provides much excitement and satisfaction. It’s more than disappointing when, during the aftermatch analysis and replays with Alan Hansen, you realise the ‘replays’ are actually of pre-stored goals and not the ones your team scored in the match. Despite this it really adds a new dimension to the gameplay as you eagerly await the rush of matchday like a teacup-throwing Harry Redknapp. If you’re a console-only gamer or a casual footie fan, and are after a management sim, this may be the title for you. If CM wasn’t your thing then why not sample the pick-up-andplay qualities of LMA Manager 2001. Probably the best console based football management sim in what, Premier Manager aside, is a fairly undernourished market. John Rowlands




10 December


The Kumars at No 42 BBC 2 9.00pm




6.00 Breakfast 9.00 Kilroy 10.00 Housetrap 11.00 Big Strong Boys 11.30 Bargain Hunt 12.00 No Win No Fee 12.30 Perfect Partner 1.00 BBC News; Weather 1.30 Regional News and Weather 1.45 Neighbours 2.10 Doctors 2.40 Diagnosis Murder 3.25 William's Wish Wellingtons 3.30 Tweenies 3.50 Dennis the Menace 4.10 The Cramp Twins 4.20 Eureka TV 4.35 Stacey Stone 5.00 Blue Peter 5.25 Newsround 5.35 Neighbours Leo struggles with animosity at school. Lordy, that’s a long word for Neighbours. Mind you don’t get confused now, kids. Hello everyone – welcome to your festive TV guide.

6.00 Open University 7.00 Albert the 5th Musketeer 7.25 C Bear and Jamal 7.45 Blue Peter 8.10 Brum 8.20 Fireman Sam 8.30 Noddy in Toyland 9.00 Tweenies Christmas Countdown; Tweenies 9.40 Playdays 10.00 Teletubbies 10.50 Schools 12.30 Working Lunch 1.00 Sn**ker: UK Championships 5.15 The Weakest Link USA In this special edition, World Wrestling Federation stars grapple against their most unforgiving opponent ever – Anne Robinson. SHIT ME! How good is this going to be. Pearlo knows who’s won but I won’t let him tell me. LALALALALA can’t hear you. Don’t tell me!

6.00 GMTV 9.25 Watch to Win 9.30 Trisha 10.30 This Morning 12.00 The Biggest Game in Town 12.30 ITV Lunchtime News and Weather 1.10 Shortland Street 1.40 House of Horrors 2.10 Crossroads 2.40 Wheel of Fortune 3.05 ITV News Headlines 3.10 HTV News and Weather 3.20 Mopatop's Shop 3.30 Construction Site 3.40 The Twins 3.50 Bernard's Watch 4.10 Hey Arnold! 4.35 The Worst Witch 5.05 The People Versus 5.30 Crossroads Jake puts Tracey's nose out of joint. if you think really, really hard you might be able to get some smut out of that. So, er, fnarr. Just a small one.

6.05 The Hoobs 6.35 The Hoobs 7.00 The Big Breakfast 9.00 Bewitched 9.35 Boy Meets World 10.00 ER 10.55 ER 11.50 Home Sweet Home 12.00 Bloom 12.30 Planed Plant: Adfent 12.45 Planed Plant: Bibi 1.00 Planed Plant: Ari Awyren 1.15 FILM: Shopworn Angel 2.45 Richard and Judy 3.45 Fifteen to One 4.15 Countdown 5.00 Uned 5 5.15 Ffeil 5.30 Don Roaming In this edition he's in Aberdeen where he tries his hand at the local game of shinty. Sports Desk, what’s shinty? “It’s like hockey...but with different sticks,” offers YTS Sports Desk. Thanks very much.

6.00 ITN News Channel 7.00 Milkshake! 7.02 Tickle, Patch and Friends 7.25 Rolie Polie Olie 7.55 Bear in the Big Blue House 8.25 Jay Jay the Jet Plane 8.55 Beachcomber Bay 9.20 Ricki Lake 10.00 The Wright Stuff 11.00 LA Doctors 12.00 5 News at Noon 12.30 Home and Away 1.00 Family Affairs 1.30 Oprah 2.20 Open House with Gloria Hunniford 3.35 FILM: Magnum – Don't Eat the Snow in Hawaii “Fuck me, that’s the best film title in the history of the world!” exclaims Film Desk. Er, thanks. 5.25 Russell Grant's Postcards 5.30 5 News

6.00 BBC News; Weather 6.30 Wales Today 7.00 X Ray 7.30 Holiday A festive cottage break in Herefordshire, a two-centre holiday in Thailand, a walking holiday on the island of Gozo, and an insider guide to the Costa del Sol. Not sure what a ‘two centre’ holiday is. Might have to go to Thailand to find out. 8.00 EastEnders Barry wonders what Roy is up to. Fnarr? Yeah, I’m in a good mood – fnarr. 8.30 Judge John Deed 10.00 BBC News 10.25 Regional News and Weather 10.35 Life after Love 11.15 The Curry Mile Colourful characters from Rusholme, a centre of Asian culture in Manchester, talk about feeding and fasting during the holy month of Ramadan. I’m going for an ‘all you can eat’ curry on Wednesday. I see it as an instruction rather than an option. Fortunately, this is the last paper of term so you won’t get to hear about the aftermath. 11.45 FILM: Kiss and Tell “Psychological, marriagey drama thingy. Doesn’t look much cop, frankly,” sniffs Film Desk. 1.25 Joins BBC News 24

6.00 The Simpsons When a tax audit lands him in hot water, Homer goes undercover for the government. Nope, don’t remember this one, so there’ll be no Simpsons quote for you this week. Er, sorry. 6.20 Captain Scarlet and the Mysterons 6.45 Sn**ker: UK Championships 7.30 From Here to Modernity 8.00 University Challenge Reigning champions Imperial College, London, take on Christ Church College, Oxford. 8.30 Top Gear Vicki ButlerHenderson tries out Volkswagen's new Polo. Not that I’m an expert or anything, but I reckon that Vicki woman must be dirty. What with being posh, an’ all. 9.00 The Kumars at No 42 9.30 Dr Terrible's House of Horrible Steve Coogan being inconceivably shit. 10.00 Mr Charity 10.30 Newsnight 11.20 Sn**ker: UK Championships Best of 17 frames? Jesus, what’s wrong with good old-fashioned ‘best of three’? This will go on for actual decades. It’s enough to make me go to bed early. 12.00 Despatch Box 12.30 BBC Learning Zone

6.00 HTV News and Weather 6.30 ITV Evening News; Weather 7.00 Emmerdale Cynthia worries about how she will manage for money over Christmas. “I sold all my internal organs last Christmas,” wheezes Skint Desk. 7.30 Coronation Street 8.00 The Ferret 8.30 Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? Chris Tarrant presents a sombre version of the slapstick quiz show Who Wants To Pour Custard Into My Oversized Trousers and Drive Around In A Car With Square Wheels? 9.00 Cold Feet 10.30 ITV News at Ten 11.00 Countdown to the British Comedy Awards A look ahead to this year's awards show for the best in British and international comedy. With soundbites from Jonathan Ross, Graham Norton and James Nesbitt. If Barrymore wins anything I’m going to cry. And not out of mirth. 12.00 The Premiership 1.00 UEFA Champions League Weekly 1.30 Nationwide Football League Extra 2.10 Young, Gifted and Broke 2.35 Trisha 3.35 The Web Review 4.00 Box Office America 4.25 ITV Nightscreen 5.30 ITV Early Morning News

6.00 Newyddion 6 News 6.10 Heno 7.00 Pobol y Cwm 7.30 Newyddion News 8.00 Lan y Lotus... Lawr yr Afon 9.00 Y Byd ar Bedwar 9.30 Sgorio 10.35 FILM: True Romance 12.55 Witness - A Child's Choice 1.55 Lethal Weapons 2.50 Football Italia 3.50 FILM: The Verdict

6.00 Home and Away 6.30 Family Affairs Jim arrives home to find Cat unconscious. At the hospital, a nurse drops a bombshell on Cat. My money’s on the revelation that she’s expecting kittens. But who’s the father...? 7.00 The Best of the X Games “Radical!” bursts slightly outmoded ‘cool’ desk. 7.30 5 News 8.00 Floyd's India In Calcutta, he cooks duck using mustard seeds which gives it a flavour of the Bengali region. He also drinks 14 gallons of Tiger beer and inadvertently sets fire to a beggar. 8.30 Hot Property 9.00 FILM: Knock Off “It’s got Jean-Claude Van Damme and Rob Schneider in it – I’ll just let you draw your own conclusions,” shrugs Film Desk. 10.45 outTHERE 11.20 The Others 12.15 The Pepsi Chart 12.20 NFL Update 1.05 Now is the Time: Night of Combat - Kick Boxing 2.00 Ironman Triathlon - Hawaii 2.45 European Drag Racing Championship Lily Savage to pip Danny la Rue at the post. 3.10 UEFA Cup Football: Inter Milan v Ipswich Town 4.30 Dutch Football: Ajax v Vitesse Arnhem

FILM: Bram Stoker’s Dracula Channel 4 10.00pm

STAYING IN TONIGHT? Call for the latest student deals

CHOICE Life After Love BBC1, 10.35pm

(029) 2022 9977



Bit of a self-indulgent one, this. Basically, single people or those unfortunates who have recently been dumped get their own bloody documentary as a forum to moan about how crap their singleton

CH4. As S4C except: 12.00 Nikki 12.30 Nikki 1.00 Cheers 1.30 Icons: Jane Russell 1.45 FILM: Chase a Crooked Shadow 3.15 Don Roaming 4.15 5.00 Richard and Judy 5.30 6.00 Friends 6.30 Hollyoaks 7.00 Channel 4 News 7.55 Slot Art 8.00 Arctic Adventurers: Airship Italia 9.00 9.30 10.00 FILM: Bram Stoker's Dracula 12.25 Shooting Gallery 12.26 Shooting Gallery: Shifting Units 12.35 Shooting Gallery: R Mertonensis 12.45 Shooting Gallery: Music for One Apartment and Six Drummers 12.55 Shooting Gallery: Yashmak 1.05 Shooting Gallery: Inferno 1.40 Bicycle Symphony 2.05 FILM: A Boy and His Dog 3.40 FILM: Fame Is the Spur 5.35 Driven


Monday 10 December

Countdown To... ITV 11.00pm



Today’s Highlights

Life After Love BBC 1 10.35pm


status is. Pardon me if I’m being obtuse but surely this is going to be deathly dull? Relationship ‘issues’ should be safely hidden away in Ally McBeal so that there’s less chance that people who don’t give a shit might accidentally stumble across them. Can we have a documentary about something interesting next week instead? Please? Like, er, snail racing. Or plank warping.... 10.12.01



11 December

Tuesday HTV



6.00 Breakfast 9.00 Kilroy 10.00 Housetrap 11.00 Big Strong Boys 11.30 Bargain Hunt 12.00 Wipeout 12.30 Perfect Partner 1.00 BBC News; Weather 1.30 Regional News and Weather 1.45 Neighbours 2.10 Doctors 2.40 Diagnosis Murder 3.25 William's Wish Wellingtons 3.30 Tweenies 3.50 Dennis the Menace 4.10 Rugrats 4.35 The Wild Thornberrys 5.00 SMart 5.25 Newsround 5.35 Neighbours ::gasp:: There aren’t any listings for Neighbours today. How am I meant to find tenuous smut when I haven’t got anything to work with? I’ll make it up: ‘Harold handles Lou’s big package’. Or something.

6.00 Open University 7.00 Smurfs' Adventures 7.25 C Bear and Jamal 7.45 Blue Peter 8.10 Oakie Doke Does anyone remember Spokey Dokies? Trouble was, you had to ride really slowly to make them clank around. Thereby causing accidents. Crap, really. 8.20 Fireman Sam 8.30 Noddy in Toyland 9.00 Tweenies Christmas Countdown; Tweenies 9.40 Playdays 10.00 Teletubbies 10.50 Schools 12.30 Working Lunch 1.00 Sn**ker: UK Championships 2.40 Assembly Live 3.20 BBC News; Regional News; Weather 3.30 Sn**ker: UK Championships 5.15 The Weakest Link USA

6.00 GMTV 9.25 Watch to Win 9.30 Trisha 10.30 This Morning 12.00 The Biggest Game in Town 12.30 ITV Lunchtime News and Weather 1.10 Shortland Street 1.40 Second World War in Colour 2.10 Crossroads 2.40 Wheel of Fortune 3.05 ITV News Headlines 3.10 HTV News and Weather 3.20 Mopatop's Shop 3.30 Merlin the Magical Puppy 3.40 The Twins 3.50 Bernard's Watch 4.10 Hey Arnold! 4.35 The Worst Witch 5.05 Night and Day 5.30 Crossroads Phil and Julie are reconciled by Rocky. See, boxers care. They hit people, yes, but they love to love as well.

6.05 The Hoobs 6.30 The Hoobs 7.00 The Big Breakfast 9.00 Bewitched 9.35 Boy Meets World 10.00 ER 10.55 ER 11.50 IS 12.00 Powerhouse 12.30 Planed Plant: Adfent 12.45 Planed Plant: Stori Fach 1.00 Planed Plant: Bryn Seren 1.15 In Search of Mythical Monsters 1.45 A Place in the Sun 2.15 Location, Location, Location 2.45 Richard and Judy 3.45 Fifteen to One 4.15 Countdown 5.00 Yr Awr Cyn Y Wawr 5.30 Don Roaming Monty Don takes part in the Drumtochty Highland Games. Does he, er, toss his caber? ::snicker:: No, he just wanks for a bit.

6.00 ITN News Channel 7.00 Milkshake! 7.02 Tickle, Patch and Friends 7.25 Rolie Polie Olie 7.55 Bear in the Big Blue House 8.25 Jay Jay the Jet Plane 8.55 Beachcomber Bay 9.20 Ricki Lake 10.00 The Wright Stuff 11.00 LA Doctors 12.00 5 News at Noon 12.30 Home and Away 1.00 Family Affairs 1.30 Oprah 2.20 Open House with Gloria Hunniford 3.40 FILM: Cagney and Lacey: The View through the Glass Ceiling “Yay! Feminist issues brought to the small screen by top cops,” yelps Film Desk. 5.20 Russell Grant's Postcards 5.30 5 News

6.00 BBC News 6.30 Wales Today; Weather 7.00 Animal Hospital Phil Hayes rescues a chameleon while Jamie Darling helps to rescue an injured seal. Jamie Darling? That’s a bit personal isn’t it? 7.30 EastEnders 8.00 Holby City A blind man becomes convinced that Anton has healing hands. Yeah, that’s what Anton tells all the blind people. 9.00 Linda Green Linda is furious when she discovers that she is the only woman at work not being sexually harassed by her boss. 9.30 Life of Grime Special: The Grime Files 10.00 BBC News 10.25 Regional News and Weather 10.35 Witness of Truth: The Railway Murders 11.25 FILM: The Paper “Controversial and sordid tale of life at a student newspaper in Cardiff. Contains filthy language, violence, sea monkeys, no nudity (thank God) and lots more filthy language,” lies Film Desk. 1.15 Sign:Two: See Hear on Saturday 2.00 Sign:Two: Wild Africa 2.50 Sign:Two: Trade Secrets 3.00 Sign:Two: Trade Secrets 3.10 Sign:Two: Trade Secrets 3.20 Joins BBC News 24

6.00 Star Trek: Voyager 6.45 Sn**ker: UK Championships Hazel Irvine presents the concluding frames of this afternoon's third-round matches. Commentary by Clive Everton, Ray Edmonds, Dennis Taylozzzzzzz.... Wha...what’s going on? Sorry, must have drifted off for a minute.... 8.00 Food and Drink Antony Worrall Thompson takes a culinary tour of the nation's favourite dishes, as voted for by viewers. Not another bastard poll? 8.30 Charlie’s Gardening Neighbours 9.00 When Louis Theroux Met the Hamiltons 10.20 Stella Street Spoof soap set in a street in Surbiton, where the residents are famous stars. Dr No appears on Who Wants To Be a Millionaire? so he can pay his builders. Is this still funny? It used to be ace but, well, I just haven’t had time to see it lately. 10.30 Newsnight 11.20 Sn**ker: UK Championships This is probably a more effective aid to sleep than all the Mogadon in Christendom. But a lot more painful and time consuming. Just take the pills instead.... 12.00 Despatch Box

6.00 HTV News and Weather 6.30 ITV Evening News; Weather 7.00 Emmerdale Viv resorts to underhand tactics to stop the phone mast. ::titter:: You said ‘underhand’. 7.30 Welsh in Australia He meets Australian wine guru Len Evans. “This is a great vintage, mate, it’ll get you really pissed.” Ace. 8.00 Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? Chris Tarrant presents a truncated version of the popular quiz show Who Wants To Read War And Peace Cover To Cover Before Painting The Forth Bridge. 9.00 The Bill 10.00 ITV News at Ten 10.20 Manhunt - Catching a Child Killer Chilling documentary about the controversial hunt for Britain's most elusive child killer. Can you see what’s happened here? A documentary about police procedure has been blown out of all proportion thanks to Johnny Public’s salacious fascination with child-related crime. Stupid really. Anyway, I won’t be watching because I’m sure there are much better things to be doing at this time on a Tuesday evening. 11.20 HTV News and Weather 11.30 Top Sport 12.35 Take the Mike 1.05 FILM: A Mother's Justice

6.00 Newyddion 6 News 6.10 Heno 7.00 Pobol y Cwm 7.30 Newyddion News 8.00 Cerdyn Post 8.30 Dala'r Slac yn Dinn 9.00 Y Stafell Ddirgel 10.00 It's a Girl Thing 10.30 The Sopranos 11.35 Sleepers: Undercover in the Sex Trade 12.35 Today at the Test: England v India 1.10 Hot Reels: Animation Grand Prix 2001 1.20 Adam and Joe's American Animation Adventure

6.00 Home and Away The grand opening of the new diner turns into an anticlimax. Is that rude? Well, I guess so – fnarr! 6.30 Family Affairs 7.00 Great Artists The Venetian Tiziano Vecellio pioneered the use of oils with a radical approach. ::whispers:: I’ve never heard of him. Does that make me a complete Philistine? Probably.... 7.30 5 News 8.00 Catherine the Great Historical documentary about Catherine II of Russia – a woman in a man's world, a ruler, legislator and a temptress. You know, the one who may or may not have died after shagging a horse. Astonishingly, this also features contributions from Ann Widdecombe and Edwina Currie. 9.00 FILM: Holy Man “Jeff Goldblum and Eddie Murphy can’t stop this being shit. Ah, well...” sighs Film Desk. 11.15 The History of Punishment and Torture 12.15 La Femme Nikita 1.05 American Football NFL Game of the Week: Miami Dolphins v Indianapolis Colts The Indianapolis whats? Oh, ‘colts’. Phew, thought we nearly had ‘the rudest word’ in the paper there. 4.25 Argentinian Football

CH4. As S4C except: 12.30 Nikki 12.55 All Sorts 1.15 FILM: Desiree 3.15 Don Roaming 3.45 4.15 5.00 Richard and Judy 5.30 6.00 Shipwrecked 3 6.30 Hollyoaks 7.00 Channel 4 News 7.55 Slot Art 8.00 It's a Girl Thing 8.30 Driven 9.00 Sleepers: Undercover in the Black Economy 10.00 FILM: Dracula: Dead and Loving It “Dreadful. Even by Leslie Nielsen’s standards,” winces Film Desk 11.40 Today at the Test: England v India 12.15 Hot Reels: Animation Grand Prix 2001 12.16 Adam and Joe's American Animation Adventure 3.20 Football Italia - Mezzanotte 5.05 Formula Four Powerboat Championships 5.30 Powerhouse

A Life of Grime BBC 1 9.30pm

Stella Street BBC 2 10.20pm

Manhunt ITV 10.20pm

Sleepers Channel 4 9.00pm

CHOICE When Louis Theroux Met The Hamiltons BBC2, 9.00pm Quick! Quick! Fetch the children! Gather your nearest and dearest around the television to watch what could be one of the best GRiP

documentary type things since Louis Theroux met Jimmy Saville (and Paul Daniels). Gangly sexpot Theroux (what? He’s lovely...) spends a few weeks with former MP Neil Hamilton and his wife Christine. Of course, you all know that during filming the couple hit the headlines when they were accused of sexual assault. Although the allegations turned out to be

Tuesday 11 December



Today’s Highlights



groundless, experiencing the media circus gave Louis a unique insight into a life lived under a relentless spotlight. But you do have to wonder whether or not the Hamiltons set the whole thing up. It’s conceivable that they might have done – after all, they hardly do their best to step out of that ‘relentless spotlight’. Video this and watch it again and again.




12 December


Wild Africa BBC 2 9.00pm




6.00 Breakfast 9.00 Kilroy 10.00 Housetrap 11.00 Big Strong Boys 11.30 Bargain Hunt 12.00 Wipeout 12.30 Perfect Partner 1.00 BBC News; Weather 1.30 Regional News and Weather 1.45 Neighbours 2.10 Doctors 2.40 Diagnosis Murder 3.25 William's Wish Wellingtons 3.30 Tweenies 3.50 Dennis the Menace 4.10 Jackie Chan Adventures 4.30 The Borrowers 5.00 Blue Peter 5.25 Newsround 5.35 Neighbours What a mildly interesting last week of TV 2001 style this has been. Rifling through our big book of celebrity contacts, we’ve...

6.00 Open University: Play and the Social World 6.30 Psychology: Child's Play 7.00 Smurfs' Adventures 7.25 C Bear and Jamal 7.45 SMart 8.10 Bob the Builder 8.20 Fireman Sam 8.30 Noddy in Toyland 9.00 Tweenies Christmas Countdown; Tweenies 9.40 Playdays 10.00 Teletubbies 10.50 Schools 12.30 Working Lunch 1.00 Sn**ker: UK Championships 2.40 Assembly Live 3.50 BBC News; Regional News; Weather 4.00 Sn**ker: UK Championships together some more top celebrities to do TV.

6.00 GMTV 9.25 Watch to Win 9.30 Trisha 10.30 This Morning 12.00 The Biggest Game in Town 12.30 ITV Lunchtime News and Weather 1.10 Shortland Street 1.40 Second World War in Colour 2.10 Crossroads 2.40 Wheel of Fortune 3.05 ITV News Headlines 3.10 HTV News and Weather 3.20 Mopatop's Shop 3.30 Construction Site 3.40 The Twins 3.50 Bernard's Watch 4.10 Hey Arnold! 4.35 Weirdsister College: The Further Adventures of the Worst Witch 5.05 Night and Day 5.30 Crossroads If you get offended by what...

6.05 The Hoobs 6.30 The Hoobs 7.00 The Big Breakfast 9.00 Bewitched 9.35 Boy Meets World 10.00 ER 10.55 ER 11.50 Sweet Tooth 12.00 Powerhouse 12.30 Planed Plant: Adfent 12.45 Planed Plant: Sionyn 1.00 Planed Plant: ABC 1.15 A Place in the Sun 1.45 Grand Designs Revisited 2.45 Richard and Judy 3.45 Fifteen to One 4.15 Countdown 5.00 Y Rhagalen Wirion Na 5.15 Planed Plant: Ffeil 5.30 Don Roaming ...some of these people have to say, we’re sorry – but like the Daily Mirror, we have a strict policy of telling it...

6.00 ITN News Channel 7.00 Milkshake! 7.02 Tickle, Patch and Friends 7.25 Rolie Polie Olie 7.55 Bear in the Big Blue House 8.25 Jay Jay the Jet Plane 8.55 Beachcomber Bay 9.20 Ricki Lake 10.00 The Wright Stuff 11.00 LA Doctors 12.00 5 News at Noon 12.30 Home and Away 1.00 Family Affairs 1.30 Oprah 2.20 Open House with Gloria Hunniford 3.35 FILM: Kojak 5.25 Russell Grant's Postcards 5.30 5 News it is. So if, say, Brian Blessed calls you a pretentious, namedropping wankbag, then have it out with him.

6.00 BBC News The first guest scribe today is erstwhile Taliban leader, Mohammed “I’m jihad, not pressure” Omar. 6.30 Wales Today; Weather 7.00 A Question of Sport Godless Western infidels prance about deplorably as whorish woman-creature is permitted to flaunt her sexuality in the presenters’ chair. Death to you all!!! 7.30 The Bench 8.00 Get Real... 8.45 Jet Set Departure Lounge 9.00 Panorama: The Terror Network Dunno what this is about. 10.00 BBC News 10.25 Regional News and Weather 10.35 Bigamy You puppets of Satan, how dare you gaze down from your false pedestal and denounce our ways. You’re just gutted cos you couldn’t get two birds even if you were allowed. Losers! 11.35 Madonna's Millions How will your un-Islamic ‘pop music’ comfort you when the Taliban controls your lives? Omar will never surrender. Ever, ever, ever. 12.05 The Practice 12.55 Sign One 4.00 Joins BBC News 24 Ever, ever, ever.

6.00 TOTP 2 Includes performances from Kylie Minogue and Nick Cave. You see why your decadent practices have brought destruction upon you? Behold this wanton harlot, gyrating clad in nothing but... hmmm. Sorry, where was I? Got distracted there. 6.45 Sn**ker: UK Championships Infidel fools with pointed sticks. But no Kylie. Not that Allah would wish me to cast my eyes on this foul insult to the Holy One, obviously. So I will do no such thing... oh go on then. Just a quick one. 8.00 Home Front 9.00 Wild Africa 9.50 Taboo: No Offence 10.30 Newsnight I’m wondering if it might be worth rethinking my ideas on the display of female flesh. No, this must stop! I love death like you love life! And Kylie. Oh no! Make it stop! 11.20 Sn**ker: UK Championships 12.00 Despatch Box 12.30 BBC Learning Zone That’s it, I surrender. Form a Westerndominated power base, anything. Just let me look at Kylie again! Please!

6.00 HTV News and Weather Well! Bloody hell. Kylie and TV Desk have overturned the Taliban. I don’t think anyone saw that coming. Looks like we’re going to have to find someone else to carry on the ol’ Mullah’s good work in the field of TV listings. 6.30 ITV Evening News; Weather 7.00 Emmerdale 7.30 Coronation Street 8.00 Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? 9.00 Hot Money 11.00 ITV News at Ten 11.20 HTV News and Weather 1.30 When Good Times Go Bad 2 The true stories behind some fun days out that end in unexpected disaster. Sounds a bit like this evening. What are we going to do? Whither celebrity TV writers? 12.35 FILM: Frauds With Phil Collins. We were talking about that Phil Collins rap tribute album last night – specifically, the thought processes that made that idea a reality. If anyone has any idea what they might have been, please write in. 2.15 Trisha 3.10 FILM: Smokescreen 4.20 ITV Nightscreen 5.30 ITV Early Morning News

6.00 Newyddion 6 6.10 Heno 7.00 Pobol y Cwm 7.30 Newyddion 8.00 Trafferth Mewn Tafarn 8.30 Ffermio 9.00 Swallow 10.00 Brookside 10.30 Brookside 11.00 Ally McBeal 12.00 Will and Grace 12.30 Today at the Test: England v India 1.05 Together Again 1.35 The Cut with Jo Whiley 2.20 Football Italia

6.00 Home and Away Dani is upset over Will's actions. Ahh, who gives a rat’s ass about these freakin’ morons? That’s why you Brits end up kissin’ the USA’s ass all the time – hippy shit like this saps your mind. Assholes. 6.30 Family Affairs 7.00 The Movie Chart Show Some dickweed called Steve McKenna who probably still gets dressed by his mom presents reviews of a buncha pinko sappy carrot-eater film pieces of shit which hardly have any guns in them at all. 7.30 5 News 8.00 The World's Worst Drivers Caught on Tape 3 Another sack of goddamn pussies too dumb to turn a steering wheel. Where’s my fuckin’ crossbow? I’m goin’ to the freeway. YOWWW!!!! 9.00 FILM: Black and White “Possibly a mixed bag,” says Ford. That’s what you get when you ask a woman about films – some pussy liberal fencesitter answer. Kiss my dog’s dick! 10.55 outTHERE 11.25 The Comedy Store 11.55 NHL Ice Hockey Live!: New York Islanders v New Jersey Devils Blood on the ice – YEAH! Makes ol’ Ted hot for sweet poontang. 3.30 NHL Ice Hockey Replay

CH4. As S4C except: 6.00 The Magic Roundabout 12.30 Nikki 12.55 Cheers 1.25 Supporting Acts 1.35 FILM: Lucky Jim 3.15 Don Roaming 5.00 Richard and Judy 6.00 Shipwrecked 6.30 Hollyoaks 7.00 Channel 4 News 7.55 Slot Art 8.00 Brookside 8.30 Brookside 10.00 Ally McBeal 10.55 Together Again 11.30 4 Music: The Cut with Jo Whiley 12.15 4 Music: House of Rock 1.05 4 Music: Pioneers 1.20 4 Music: Big Day Out 2.15 Witness: Voices of the Dead 3.10 Sleepers: Undercover in the Sex Trade 4.05 The Secret Life of the Crash Test Dummy 4.55 Powerhouse 5.20 Countdown Aaaah! We’ve found someone. Rock redneck Ted Nugent takes the stage.


Wednesday 12 December

Emmerdale ITV 7.00pm



Today’s Highlights

Bigamy BBC 1 10.35pm


Swallow Channel 4 9.00pm

STAYING IN TONIGHT? Call for the latest student deals

CHOICE Bigamy BBC1, 10.35pm

(029) 2022 9977



As the old (and rubbish) joke had it: What’s the ultimate punishment for bigamy? Two mothers-inlaw. Or more accurately – as this enlightening and possibly shocking programme should reveal – a life

spent on the run, double-dealing and most likely annoying everyone by being a rubbish spouse. According to this, more than fifty per cent of bigamists have convictions for fraud. Presumably they see making off with an actual living entity (rather than a grandfather clock or something) as the ultimate act of deception. We also learn of a bigamous marriage that lasted for more than three decades. Frankly, we take our hats off to that. 10.12.01



13 December

Thursday HTV



6.00 Breakfast 9.00 Kilroy 10.00 Housetrap 11.00 Big Strong Boys 11.30 Bargain Hunt 12.00 Wipeout 12.30 Perfect Partner 1.00 BBC News; Weather 1.30 Regional News and Weather 1.45 Neighbours 2.10 Doctors 2.40 Diagnosis Murder 3.25 William's Wish Wellingtons 3.30 Tweenies 3.50 Dennis the Menace 4.10 Rugrats 4.35 Hollywood 7 5.00 SMart 5.25 Newsround 5.35 Neighbours Libby and Drew play host to an uninvited guest. Office poll: who is this uninvited guest? The majority seems to go with William Shatner. Although there is a vote for Drew’s fake-Scottish uncle.

6.00 Open University 7.00 Smurfs’ Adventures 7.25 C Bear and Jamal God, no – this is dreadful. But I seem to remember it’s got someone like Ice T doing the voice of the bear. No, really. I mean, it’s not like he needs the money, is it? 7.45 Blue Peter 8.10 Dr Otter 8.20 Fireman Sam 8.30 Noddy in Toyland 9.00 Tweenies Christmas Countdown; Tweenies 9.40 Playdays 10.00 Teletubbies 10.50 Schools 12.30 Working Lunch 1.00 Sn**ker: UK Championships 2.40 Assembly Live 3.20 BBC News; Weather; Regional News 3.30 Sn**ker: UK Championships 5.15 The Weakest Link USA

6.00 GMTV 9.25 Watch to Win 9.30 Trisha 10.30 This Morning 12.00 The Biggest Game in Town 12.30 ITV Lunchtime News and Weather 1.10 Shortland Street 1.40 The Farmer Wants a Wife 2.10 Crossroads 2.40 Wheel of Fortune 3.05 ITV News Headlines 3.10 HTV News and Weather 3.20 Mopatop's Shop 3.30 Merlin the Magical Puppy 3.40 The Twins 3.50 Bernard's Watch 4.10 Hey Arnold! 4.35 Weirdsister College: The Further Adventures of the Worst Witch No! Do not tinker with The Worst Witch! 5.05 Night and Day 5.30 Crossroads

6.05 The Hoobs 6.30 The Hoobs 7.00 The Big Breakfast 9.00 Bewitched 9.35 Boy Meets World 10.00 ER 10.50 ER 11.45 IS 12.00 Powerhouse 12.30 Planed Plant: Adfent 12.45 Planed Plant: Bibi 1.00 Planed Plant: Ty Rhys 1.15 Churchill's Secret Army 2.15 Location, Location, Location 2.45 Richard and Judy 3.45 Fifteen to One 4.15 Countdown 5.00 Uned 5 Magazine programme for children. 5.30 Don Roaming In the Scottish Highlands, Monty Don visits the alternative community of Findhorn. Where? Good Lord, that’s nearly as rude as, oh, I don’t know, Bigcock City in Quimville.

6.00 ITN News Channel 7.00 Milkshake! 7.02 Tickle, Patch and Friends 7.25 Rolie Polie Olie 7.55 Bear in the Big Blue House 8.25 Jay Jay the Jet Plane 8.55 Beachcomber Bay 9.20 Ricki Lake 10.00 The Wright Stuff 11.00 LA Doctors 12.00 5 News at Noon 12.30 Home and Away 1.00 Family Affairs 1.30 Oprah 2.20 Open House with Gloria Hunniford 3.45 Columbo 5.30 5 News Gah! Too much space to fill. Best tell a joke then. Erm, Q: What d’you call an Irishman who keeps coming back? A: Rick O’Shea. Ahahhaaaaa! Ahem, sorry about that. It’ll be better next time.

6.00 BBC News 6.30 Wales Today; Weather 7.00 Watchdog Listen to me, my brothers and sisters! The time has come to fight your own battles! If something bad happens to you – shoddy service, for instance – then deal with it. Don’t go whining to Nicky Campbell and wasting my time on TV. Cunts. 7.30 EastEnders 8.00 Kenyon Confronts: Charity Cheats “It’s like The Cook Report but with a more slapstick approach” – Alan Partridge. Okay, not strictly true but funnier than what was written here before. 8.30 Walking with Beasts: Sabre Tooth 9.00 FILM: The Hunt for Red October “Sorry, haven’t seen it. I’d ask Mr Film Desk but you’d probably get a sensible answer,” explains Film Desk, a little smugly. 10.00 BBC News 10.25 Regional News and Weather 10.35 FILM: The Hunt for Red October 11.45 Film 2001 with Jonathan Ross Lots of guff about The Lord Of The Rings. How excited am I? Very, that’s how much. 12.15 Sn**ker: UK Championships 1.15 Liquid News 1.55 Joins BBC News 24

6.00 The New Adventures of Superman The new boss of Intergang is out to gain control of the Daily Planet – and he has a chunk of mysterious red kryptonite. Yeah, well I’ve got a rock shaped like a pyramid that I found on the beach but that won’t help me wrest control of Gair Rhydd out of the hands of Sarah. Will it? Eh? 6.45 Sn**ker: UK Championships 7.30 Reel Time: 50s-60s 8.00 Dragon's Eye 8.30 What Not to Wear In this edition, making over an art teacher with a love of tent dresses. No! Art teachers have to wear tent dresses. And bit dangly earrings and shoes made of felt. 9.00 Facing the Enemy: Everyman A documentary charting the remarkable meeting between Jo Tuffnell, whose father was killed during the bombing of Brighton’s Grand hotel in 1984, and the man responsible for his death. Should be good, in a harrowing sort of way. Actually, good’s probably the wrong word. Um, compelling’s probably better. See, you can tell I did English. Sort of.... 10.00 attachments 10.30 Newsnight 11.20 Mega Mela Malai 12.00 Despatch Box 12.30 BBC Learning Zone

6.00 HTV News and Weather 6.30 ITV Evening News; Weather 7.00 Emmerdale Betty suspects something is amiss as Seth plays Santa. Fnarr! Well, almost.... 7.30 Wales This Week 8.00 Coronation Street Maxine feels the strain of living with Fred and Eve. Not really deserving of a fnarr but it’s been a quiet week so: fnarr! 8.30 Peak Practice 9.30 The Farmer Wants a Wife Series following 12 farmers looking for love. Richard Q is too busy to be able to go out with Karen. Well how do you expect to find love if you’re ‘too busy’ to go on a date. Come on, man – make the effort. These production people from ITV have set you up with some sort of beefy-legged farmgirl and you’re up to your armpits in a cow’s backside. You need to sort out your priorities Mr Q. 10.00 ITV News at Ten 10.30 Night and Day 11.30 HTV News and Weather 11.40 HTV Wales News Special 12.10 Storm Force 12.40 Young, Gifted and Broke 1.35 Days like These 2.00 CD:UK 2.50 ITV at the Festivals 2001 3.45 Cybernet 4.10 ITV Nightscreen 5.30 ITV Early Morning News

6.00 Newyddion 6 News 6.10 Heno 7.00 Pobol y Cwm 7.30 Newyddion News 8.00 Ar y Bocs 9.00 How the Twin Towers Collapsed 10.00 Driven 10.30 Y Sesiwn Hwyr 11.35 Eurotrash 12.05 Will and Grace 12.35 Today at the Test: India v England 1.10 Murder in Paradise 2.10 Changing Tombs 3.10 Action 3.35 FILM: Beyond the Forest “No idea, but it sounds quite rude,” sniggers Film Desk childishly.

6.00 Home and Away Duncan and Nick's prank has severe consequences. Ace! Pranks rule. 6.30 Family Affairs Fern suggests to Vince that the only way of saving their marriage is for them to live apart, and Cat becomes angry when Yasmin tries to convince her to keep her baby. First off, Vince should be arrested for marrying a pot-plant. Second, it’s probably in Cat’s interest to give up the baby to a family that will really care for it and give it a ball of wool to play with and a nice basket. 7.00 The Pepsi Chart 7.30 5 News 8.00 Great Crimes of the 20th Century 8.30 Arrest and Trial: Holiday Nightmare 9.00 FILM: One Night Stand “Ooh, this is meant to be good – Mike Figgis directed it. And it’s got Wesley Snipes in and...” Film Desk, have you seen this film? “Er, no. But it is meant to be very good...”. Rubbish. 11.00 Sex and Shopping 12.00 Jonathan Pearce's Football Night 12.45 Dutch Football: SC Heerenveen v Feyenoord Best team names in the whole world ever. 2.15 Argentinian Football 3.45 Best of the 2001 Winter X Games

CHOICE How The Twin Towers Collapsed Channel 4/S4C, 9.00pm Now is the time, apparently, to start looking at the events of September 11 with a more clinical eye. And although this programme is GRiP

CH4. As S4C except: 11.50 IS 12.00 12.30 Nikki 12.55 Cheers 1.25 Turf Accounts 1.35 FILM: Chance of a Lifetime 3.15 Don Roaming 4.15 5.00 Richard and Judy 5.30 6.00 Shipwrecked Extra 6.30 Hollyoaks 7.00 Channel 4 News 7.55 Slot Art 8.00 Grand Designs 9.00 10.00 Eurotrash 10.30 The Sopranos 11.45 The Comedy Lab 12.15 Today at the Test: India v England 12.50 Action 1.20 4 Later: onedottv 1.45 FIVB World Beach Volleyball 2.15 Trans World Sport 3.10 Football Italia – Mezzanotte 4.55 Powerhouse 5.20 Countdown

probably going to try its damndest to be all scientific it includes eye-witness accounts of the cataclysmic attacks on the World Trade Centre and they’re bound to bring home the human element here. This one-off documentary looks at how the structure of the WTC’s twin towers affected the way that they collapsed – a somewhat academic question when you think about it.

FILM: Hunt For Red October BBC 1 9.00pm

The Journey – Everyman BBC 2 9.00pm

Peak Practice ITV 8.30pm

How The Twin Towers Collapsed Channel 4 9.00pm

Thursday 13 December



Today’s Highlights



Surely any building is liable to collapse if a plane flies into it and I’d hazard a guess that it was the towers’ height more than anything which made them a target and which ultimately caused such carnage. But, clearly, I’m not an expert so I’d best leave all the explaining to them – they have 3D reconstructions and everything. And that makes everything all right....




14 December

Have I Got News For You BBC 1 9.00pm

Charlie’s Gardening Neighbours BBC 2 9.00pm





6.00 Breakfast 9.00 Kilroy 10.00 Housetrap 11.00 Big Strong Boys 11.30 Bargain Hunt 12.00 Wipeout 12.30 Perfect Partner 1.00 BBC News 1.30 Regional News and Weather 1.45 Neighbours 2.10 Doctors 2.40 Diagnosis Murder 3.25 William's Wish Wellingtons 3.30 Tweenies 3.50 Dennis the Menace 4.10 Super Duper Sumos 4.35 Record Breakers 5.00 Blue Peter 5.25 Newsround 5.35 Neighbours Zack explains the sort of relationship he wants with Michelle. ::snort:: I think I can probably guess. They’re all the same, you know. Just after one thing. Then again, aren’t we all? What? We’re not? Oh....

6.00 Open University 7.00 The Puppy's Further Adventures 7.25 C Bear and Jamal 7.45 SMart 8.10 Bill and Ben 8.20 Fireman Sam 8.30 Noddy in Toyland 9.00 Tweenies Christmas Countdown; Tweenies 9.40 Playdays 10.00 Teletubbies 10.50 Schools 12.30 Working Lunch 1.00 Sn**ker: UK Championships 5.15 The Weakest Link USA Quite why we should be more interested in whether the Yanks can face up to the ginger witch than good old, er, whatever the Americans call us [try Limeys – Foreign Ed], is a mystery. But they are very polite so I suppose we can all learn from that.

6.00 GMTV 9.25 Watch to Win 9.30 Trisha 10.30 This Morning 12.00 The Biggest Game in Town 12.30 ITV Lunchtime News and Weather 1.10 Shortland Street 1.40 Catchphrase 2.10 Village People 2.40 Passion for Fashion 3.05 ITV News Headlines 3.10 HTV News and Weather 3.20 Mopatop's Shop 3.30 Construction Site 3.40 The Twins 3.50 Bernard's Watch 4.10 Hey Arnold! 4.35 Weirdsister College: The Further Adventures of the Worst Witch 5.05 The People Versus 5.30 The Biggest Game in Town Bigscreen Atmosfear terrorises St Albans for three days.

6.05 The Hoobs 6.30 The Hoobs 7.00 The Big Breakfast 9.00 Bewitched 9.30 Happy Days 10.00 ER 10.55 ER 11.50 Sweet Tooth 12.00 Powerhouse 12.30 Planed Plant: Adfent 12.45 Planed Plant: Sali Mali 1.00 Channel 4 Racing from Cheltenham 3.45 Richard and Judy 4.45 Y Rhagalen Wirion Na 5.00 Na Dderyn 5.15 Countdown Where’s all the TV gone today? How am I meant to fill all this space? Oh, I know. The word cunt is a naughty word but sometimes there’s no other that will do. Jamie Oliver, for instance, just is a cunt. It’s sad but true. As for its other uses, well, it’s just, well, funny. See Withnail...

6.00 ITN News Channel 7.00 Milkshake! 7.02 Tickle, Patch and Friends 7.25 Rolie Polie Olie 7.55 Bear in the Big Blue House 8.25 Jay Jay the Jet Plane 8.55 Beachcomber Bay 9.20 Ricki Lake 10.00 The Wright Stuff 11.00 LA Doctors 12.00 5 News at Noon 12.30 Home and Away 1.00 Family Affairs 1.30 Oprah 2.20 Open House with Gloria Hunniford 3.35 FILM: Ironside 5.25 Russell Grant's Postcards 5.30 5 News ...and I if you don’t believe me. I hope that’s answered some of this week’s critics. If not, well, Happy Christmas anyway. See, I care really....

6.00 BBC News 6.30 Wales Today; Weather 7.00 Animal Hospital Featuring an elderly Jack Russell with suspected heart problems. For some reason, I’m imaging this dog with a broad Lancashire accent, a flat cap and possibly a pipe. 7.30 Top of the Pops 8.00 EastEnders Phil realises that Sharon has been lying and pushes her to confess. Pushes? Oh, go on then...fnarr! 8.30 My Family For her birthday, Ben decides to take Susan back to one of their old romantic haunts. Presumably with hilarious consequences. But I could be wrong. 9.00 Have I Got News for You 9.30 Gimme Gimme Gimme 10.00 BBC News 10.25 Regional News and Weather 10.35 large 11.05 Friday Night with Jonathan Ross 11.45 Alistair McGowan's Big Impression 12.15 The Stand-Up Show 12.45 LA Pool Party 1.35 FILM: Victim of Rage “Wifebeating based hilarity.” Film Desk, is it really hilarious? “No, it’s meant to be gritty. That was just my little joke.” Hilarious. “Thanks.” Okay, you can go now.

6.00 Robot Wars Extreme The robots ranked two and three in the UK go head-tohead. Like anyone with even the vaguest shred of dignity is going to be watching this.... 6.45 Scrum V Live 9.00 Charlie's Gardening Neighbours 9.30 Viking Voyage An international crew headed by Sir Robin Knox-Johnston accepts the challenge of sailing a replica Viking ship across the North Sea with only a primitive sun-compass to help them navigate. Ha, gutted – using a largely sunbased implement in the North Sea. No wonder the Vikings ended up in York – they were looking for Bermuda. 10.20 Ancient Secrets 10.30 Newsnight 11.00 Newsnight Review Round-table arts discussion series in which Mark Lawson is joined by three guests to discuss the week's cultural highlights. A programme watched only by the participants mums. Pretentious fools. 11.35 Sn**ker: UK Championships 12.35 Robot Wars Extreme 1.20 FILM: The Shakedown “Some sort of, er, old film about, er stuff...sorry, I deleted the listing before I read it properly,” mumbles Film Desk. Git.

6.00 HTV News and Weather 6.30 ITV Evening News; Weather 7.00 Emmerdale Nicola and Maggie go head-to-head as the Dale Park Christmas party turns into a fiasco. Oh yes, very good, definitely a ‘fnarr’ for that. 7.30 Coronation Street 8.00 Rich and Famous This week Caron goes Christmas shopping with the stars in Selfridges. If I can think of anything more worthless than this I’ll tell you. But I might be some time.... 8.30 The Bill 9.30 The Unforgettable Benny Hill 10.15 An Audience with Bruce Forsyth Bruce Forsyth entertains a VIP audience with a spectacular one-man show. As well as taking questions from the audience, he has surprises in store for some guests. Like squatting naked on a glass table...bloooooargh. Christ, sorry, I’ve just been incredibly ill. 11.15 ITV Weekend News 11.35 HTV News 11.45 Barry Welsh is Coming 12.15 Payne 12.45 Dial-a-Date 1.10 The World's Most Incredible Animal Rescues 2 2.00 New Music Television 2.30 That Prezzie Show – Christmas Special 2.55 Take the Mike 3.20 Box Office America 3.45 World Football 4.10 Trisha 5.10 ITV Nightscreen 5.30 Early Morning News

6.00 Newyddion 6 News 6.10 Heno 7.00 Pobol y Cwm 7.30 Newyddion News 8.00 Cefn Gwlad: John Edwards 8.30 Yma Mae 'Nghan 9.00 Friends 9.30 Friends 10.00 Brookside 10.35 So Graham Norton 11.30 Eurotrash 12.00 Sex and the City 12.30 The Fugitive 1.25 Today at the Test: India v England 1.55 Thumb Bandits 2.25 The Comedy Lab 2.55 Hotsand: FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour 2001 3.25 FILM: Kiss or Kill

6.00 Home and Away Shauna faints after a run. My sister was sick during a run once. Beat that, Shauna. 6.30 Family Affairs 7.00 Toyota World of Wildlife All about snakes tonight. Nice. 7.30 5 News 8.00 Secrets of World War II: Nazi V-Weapons 8.30 Britain's War Heroes: The X Men Sorry, it’s about a submarine called an X Craft. Nothing to do with men with Adamantum claws – schnik! They’re cool. 9.00 FILM: Remember Me With “Young mum thinks she’s turning mutbag, something happens and, then, er something else...and, sorry, this sounds lame,” rambles Film Desk. 10.55 FILM: Warm Texas Rain When a marine rescues a feisty redhead in a bar, he is keen to learn more about her but is not prepared for the surprises she has in store. It says here. Ace! 12.45 FILM: In the Presence of Mine Enemies 2.20 FILM: Listen Up: the Lives of Quincy Jones 4.15 Night Stand 4.45 Police Academy – The Series 5.30 Okavango Shit! Running out of room. This is my last page of the year. Just time to say Happy Christmas to all of you, particularly those of you who hate TV – you make it all worthwhile.

CH4. As S4C except: 12.30 Don Roaming 1.00 3.45 Fifteen to One 4.15 Countdown 5.00 Richard and Judy 6.00 The Fugitive 7.00 Channel 4 News 7.30 ALT-TV - World According to Me 8.00 Going Critical: The Sinking of HMS Coventry 8.30 Brookside 9.00 Friends 9.30 Will and Grace 10.00 Frasier 10.30 So Graham Norton 11.25 Sex and the City 12.00 Today at the Test: India v England 12.30 Thumb Bandits 1.00 The Cut with Jo Whiley 1.45 Pets 2.05 Third Watch 2.50 Bull 3.40 Jack and Jill 4.20 Butterflies 4.50 Powerhouse 5.15 Countdown


Friday 14 December

The Bill ITV 8.30pm



Today’s Highlights


Friends Channel 4 9.00pm

STAYING IN TONIGHT? Call for the latest student deals

CHOICE Friday Night With Jonathan Ross BBC1, 11.05pm

(029) 2022 9977



Being a crazy party animal I’m obviously never in to watch this so can’t really stoke the flames of the ‘Ross v Norton’ debate. But Ross’ guests tonight include Ronan Keating and David Blaine. Hopefully,

Blaine will do us all a favour and magic Keating into some sort of amphibian. Although I doubt very much that he could because David Blaine is no more magic than I am. All that levitation nonsense is just a trick of the light and don’t try to tell me that all that spontaneous street trickery isn’t set up. Then again, I could just be jealous because I can’t stand in a block of ice for a million hours.... 10.12.01



15 December

Saturday HTV



7.00 Tweenies; Little Bear 7.30 Brum 7.40 Fix and Foxi 7.50 Flint the Time Detective 8.15 The Woody Woodpecker Show 8.35 Rugrats 9.00 The Saturday Show 12.00 Football Focus 12.50 BBC News; Weather 1.00 Grandstand 1.05 Rugby Union 1.10 Sn**ker: UK Championships 1.20 Racing from Haydock Park 1.40 Sn**ker 2.00 Racing 2.15 Sn**ker 2.30 Racing 2.45 Rugby Union: The Celtic League Final 3.45 Football Half-Times 3.55 Rugby Union 4.45 Wales on Saturday 5.25 BBC News; Weather 5.40 Wales Today 5.45 Natural Bloomers II

7.00 Weekend 24 9.00 FILM: Sister Kenny 10.50 See Hear on Saturday – Deaf News 11.05 See Hear on Saturday 11.50 The Sky at Night 12.10 Stingray 12.35 Wildlife on Two 1.05 FILM: Darling Lili 3.15 FILM: The Assassination Bureau 5.05 TOTP 2 5.50 Sn**ker: UK Championships On a day bursting to the gills with a full programme of sport, it only seems right and proper that we should have one of football’s elder and purpler statesmen, Man United overlord Alex Ferguson. Of course, the irascible Scot isn’t courting the media...

6.00 GMTV 9.25 SMTV Live 11.30 CD:UK 12.30 On the Ball 1.20 ITV News; Weather 1.25 HTV News and Weather 1.30 Digimon 2.00 Hey Arnold! 2.25 New Scooby Doo Mysteries 2.35 FILM: A Little Princess 4.20 The Goal Rush 5.05 HTV News and Weather 5.20 ITV News; Sports Results; Weather 5.35 Challenge of a Lifetime ...much at the moment, so this one could be a bit tricky. That’s TV Desk. Living on the edge as always. Well, let’s give it a try. When Alex gets here. Doo de doo de doo... [twiddles thumbs anxiously] come on, don’t let us down.

6.05 The Hoobs 6.35 Blue's Clues 7.00 Masters Football 8.00 Trans World Sport 9.00 The Morning Line 10.00 Smash Hits Poll Winners Party 12.00 Adfent 12.15 Caio 12.30 Shipwrecked Extra 1.00 Channel 4 Racing from Cheltenham and Doncaster 4.00 New York 5.00 Newyddion 5.10 Y Clwb Rygbi MUSIC RETRO RETURN TO WINNING WAYS ■ “LAY IT ON THE LINE YOU GUTLESS WORM” ■ NORWEIGAN WOOD TO CAUSE RISING DAMP? ■ MENCAP VERSUS PORRIDGEFACED HIT SQUAD

6.00 Russell Grant's Postcards 6.05 WideWorld 6.30 WideWorld 7.00 ITN News Channel 7.30 Milkshake! 7.35 Redwall 8.00 The Powerpuff Girls 8.15 FILM: PUNKS 10.05 USA High 10.30 Date That 11.00 Core News 11.05 Edgemont 11.30 The Academy 12.00 5 News at Lunchtime 12.10 Home and Away Omnibus 2.15 Atlantis High 2.40 The Core 2.50 The Pepsi Chart 3.25 Harry and Cosh 3.55 School 4.55 Dark Knight 5.55 5 News and Sport Tremendous! Here’s Fergie now, striding into the foreground with purpose.

6.15 Friends like These No, of course it’s not crisis point here at Old Trafford. It’s simply a question of patience, strength in depth, and blaming referees and the systematically biased British media when things slip up. Barthez? He just needs confidence reinstalled in... wait a minute. This is MUTV, isn’t it? No... What? Right, that is IT. I am fed up to the back teeth of you media lot constantly jumping on my back, giving me abuse for trying to run the most successful football cl... TV listings, eh? Is there any racing on? No, it was on earlier. Can I go back and do it? Gibraltar Rock is in the 2.30 at... Nope, sorry. Oh, for CHRIST’S SAKE... Calm down! We’ll find you something to do! Ooooohhh!! 7.10 The Waiting Game 7.50 The National Lottery Jet Set 8.25 Casualty 9.15 The Vicar of Dibley 9.55 BBC News; Weather 10.15 FILM: Broken Arrow “Oh, I saw that with my first girly thing,” says Wathan. We think he means girlfriend. 11.55 FILM: Nowhere Land 1.25 Jonathan Ross 2.05 A Question of Sport 2.35 Top of the Pops 3.05 Joins BBC News 24

7.10 What the Papers Say I wouldn’t know, I never read them. Why should I when they are full of nothing but prejudiced, damaging ranting about me and these young men I work so hard with to... (Get on with it – Ed) Oh, erm, yeah. Watch this. Probably. 7.20 Private Life of a Masterpiece: Michelangelo's David Documentary about David Beckham, looking at how he copes under intense media scrutiny and attempts to run him into the ground with a barrage of insults and abuse. (No it isn’t. If you moan once more you’re out. Do you understand? – Ed) Hmph. 8.10 The Lesley Garrett Show 9.00 Sn**ker: UK Championships 10.30 FILM: Music Box “Sounds rubbish” – Ford 12.30 FILM: If... “Fucking awesome! Really excellent,” blethers Ford of this Malcolm McDowell classic. Where’s Fergie gone? Oh look, there he is. In the corner of the office, next to the water cooler, with his hands on his hips. He keeps making sort of huffing and chewing noises. Weird. Oh well... let’s persevere.

6.05 Pop Idol 7.15 Blind Date 8.15 Pop Idol Result 8.45 ITV Weekend News 9.00 The British Comedy Awards 2001 10.30 The Premiership Including Middlesbrough v Manchester United, West Ham v Arsenal and Tottenham v Fulham. And I don’t doubt that those lot will be sitting, comfortable and snug, in the studio, taking my hard work to pieces with their... (Right. That’s ENOUGH! Get out of the office, you purple-nosed twat, and don’t come back – Ed) 11.45 FILM: Wilder Napalm Comedy about two brothers who both possess the strange gift of being able to make objects burst into flames by just thinking about fire. Trouble flares when they both fall for the same woman, who marries one of them but enjoys an affair with the other. This sounds AMAZING! 1.45 Box Office America Special 2.35 Diala-Date 3.05 Mixmasters 3.30 That Prezzie Show – Christmas Special 3.55 World Sport 4.20 World Football 4.50 ITV Nightscreen 5.30 ITV Early Morning News HTV West

7.15 Newyddion a Chwaraeon 7.30 Sadwrn Ar y Stryd 8.00 Noson Lawen 9.00 Straeon Cerdd 10.00 FILM: Michael 12.00 India v England 12.30 European Film Awards 1.00 FILM: Gridlock'd 2.30 Red Bull Helter Skelter 3.00 FILM: The Green Man 4.20 ALTTV – World According to Me Thank Christ he’s gone. I’m not sure why we got Fergie in in the first place, I’ve always hated him.

6.00 Fort Boyard 7.00 Night Fever 7.55 5 News and Sport 8.15 The Greatest TV Cops of All Time God almighty. This whole celebrity TV thing has really drained me of enthusiasm. Why do we always end up with nutbags? Why can’t people just be reasonable, rather than swear, shoot people, throw up or surrender cities? Where have we been going wrong? 10.20 FILM: Sweeney! “I’ve got a postcard of this,” says Gates. “I think Regan loses his job about halfway through, and someone probably says, ‘Get your trousers on, you’re nicked’ or something.” Stunningly informative, for so late in the evening. Ford has just gone home as well. Mad shouts going out to Ford for the bout of hot man action that appears to have landed in her lap. Thus, expect her TV pages to be significantly less bitter in 2002 (except about Jamie Oliver obviously). In this corner it’ll be the same old sweary story I imagine. 12.15 Twin Peaks 1.15 Sportsweek 3.30 FILM: Cherokee Strip 4.55 Russell Grant's Postcards 5.05 Okavango 5.30 Bamboo Bears

CH4. As S4C except: 6.00 Tales of a Wise King 10.00 Football Italia 11.00 Red Bull Helter Skelter 11.30 Shipwrecked Extra 12.00 Little House on the Prairie 5.05 Brookside 6.30 Channel 4 News 7.00 Secrets of the Stone Age 8.00 Lethal Weapons: Inside Britain's Armed Police 9.00 FILM: Circle of Friends 10.55 So Graham Norton 11.50 Today at the Test: India v England 12.20 European Film Awards 12.50 FILM: The Brood 2.30 Mondo Macabro – World's Weirdest Movies 3.00 FILM: The Virgin Courtesan 4.15 The Norm Show 4.40 King of the Hill 5.05 Countdown 5.50 The Clangers

The Vicar of Dibley BBC 1 9.15pm

Casualty BBC1 8.25pm

Private Life of a Masterpiece BBC2 7.20pm

Pop Idol ITV 6.05/8.15pm

CHOICE FILM: Wilder Napalm HTV, 11.45pm I’ll be honest with you – I’d never heard of this film (a description of which can be found in the appropriate timeslot above) before it popped up in the TV listings, and haven’t GRiP

heard of any of the characters who purportedly star in it. In fact, there’s a good chance it’ll be nonsensical and badly-acted straight-to-video guff. But what the hell, it’s Christmas (or ‘non-faithspecific seasonal time of festivities’) and the premise for this is quite genius. Which things would office members like to “burst into flames just by thinking about fire”? Pearlo:

Saturday 15 December



Today’s Highlights



“Patrick Viera.” Tristan: “I’d light the Olympic flame just before the proper person did, so they looked stupid.” Lydia: “This computer.” Bladon: “Fire. Just to see if you really can fight fire with fire.” DC Gates: “A popcorn factory, to see if I could flood a whole town.” Sarah: “This office, so I didn’t have to come back again. Plus I could probably get a cut of the insurance money.” Worth a try...




16 December

Sunday HTV



6.00 Breakfast 9.00 Breakfast with Frost 10.00 Christmas Voices 10.45 Quincy 11.30 Countryfile 12.00 On the Record 1.00 EastEnders 2.55 Showtime at the Stadium 4.10 Walking with Beasts 4.40 Walking with Beasts 5.10 Lifeline 5.20 BBC News; Weather 5.40 Regional News; Weather 5.45 I Was a Rat As a ‘special’ treat’, we’re wiping a white tear from a reddened eye today as we present our unique Review of 2001 – as seen through the blurry lens of TV Desk. Let’s make it a night to remember, from January to December.

6.45 Tweenies Christmas Countdown; Tweenies 7.25 Pocket Dragon Adventures 7.40 The Lampies 7.50 Flint the Time Detective 8.15 The Woody Woodpecker Show 8.35 Rugrats 9.05 Hollywood 7 9.30 The S Club Search 9.35 Mona the Vampire 9.50 The Cramp Twins 10.05 Kenan and Kel 10.30 So Little Time 11.20 Rex the Runt 11.30 Robot Wars Extreme 12.15 Roswell High 1.00 The Pop Factory 1.30 Sunday Grandstand 1.35 Ski Sunday 2.10 Sn**ker: UK Championships 5.10 Scrum V January saw idle chat about camel racing, a claim...

HTV WALES 6.00 GMTV 9.25 The Premiership 10.25 The Rottentrolls 10.40 Fetch the Vet 10.55 Animal Stories 11.00 The Ark 11.30 Sunday Morning 12.30 Waterfront 12.55 HTV News and Weather 1.00 Jonathan Dimbleby 2.00 Soccer Sunday Live: Wimbledon v Nottingham Forest 4.30 Planet's Funniest Animals 5.00 High Performance 5.30 The River Patrol: The Towy ...that “My mother was a masseuse” used as an attempt to have sex with a girl, a Welsh scally keeping his trousers on, and Sanderson learning about the poobox.

6.20 Pippi Longstocking 6.50 The Hoobs 7.15 Bagpuss 7.30 Football Italia 8.25 Blunt attp 8.55 Shipwrecked 3 9.25 Shipwrecked 9.55 Hollyoaks 11.55 Planed Plant: Adfent 12.10 Planed Plant: Clwc 12.25 Rownd a Rownd 1.00 Y Clwb 2.00 Don Roaming 2.30 Brookside 3.55 Going Critical 4.25 Maniffesto 5.25 Newyddion 5.35 Pobol y Cwm In February, we learned that all religion is wank. Attempts to disprove this proved fruitless. We also saw the beginning of Gemma’s obsession with the singer from Alfie... (BBC1)

6.00 Russell Grant's Postcards 6.05 WideWorld 6.30 Dappledown Farm 7.00 Beachcomber Bay 7.30 Milkshake! 7.35 Tickle, Patch and Friends 8.00 Adventures from the Book of Virtues 8.30 Tintin 9.00 Tiger, Tiger 9.25 The Mole 10.30 Core News 10.35 The Big Question 11.05 For the Love of Christ 11.35 The Movie Chart Show 12.05 Great Artists 12.35 5 News at Lunchtime 12.45 FILM: Law and Order 2.15 Exclusive 2.55 Family Affairs Omnibus 5.10 FILM: Mighty Morphin Power Rangers “Rubbish hand movements” – Lydia

6.45 Antiques Roadshow ...who once said to me, “You can’t like my band cos you’ve got a Black Flag Tshirt on”. Fair enough. Craig David’s beard, a blonde beauty and an acrostic about a cunt also caused half an arf, as did the arrival of the Svengabus. 7.30 Songs of Praise March began well with the birth of the pseudo blue bar and Michael XX – Text God. It got better with the real Ping Pong Bitches, a shy man named Matthew, the quote “I’d like to see her laughing when she’s coming on the end of my cock,” and pissing in Coke. 8.10 Monarch of the Glen 9.00 Robert Winston's Threads of Life In April, all talk turned to the debut of DJ Mencap. Until he started DJing that is. Afterwards, things like spacehopper parties, ‘The Opposite Of Sex’ and Euros on the lash were deemed chatworthy. 10.00 BBC News; Weather 10.20 The Richard Dimbleby Lecture 11.05 FILM: Legalese Another film with Gina Gershon in. Be realistic, are you going to be watching? No, of course not. Go bed. 12.45 Joins BBC News 24

6.00 Wild: Meerkats Divided May was astonishing. From “underhand” references to housemates and sexlines to bollocks about Kelly Jones, it raced out of the starting blocks... but in the space of 24 hours, Believe In The Loft cruised to Berkshire and got meaty meaty in the process. In a very real sense... but we’ve said enough. Quote of the month: “It’s going to be a 12-year-old and a whore in charge next year...” What could this bitter man have been talking about? Lost shoes, an award, a Boobytrap sitcom and the Cornish news was rounded off by Stoner’s cake and a trip to casualty. 6.30 Wild: Wild Britain: Deer Diary 6.40 Wild: The Natural World: The Alps 7.30 Gardeners' World 8.00 Sn**ker: UK Championships 10.30 Correspondent: 11.15 Have I Got News for You 11.45 Gimme Gimme Gimme 12.15 Aaagh! It's the Mr Hell Show! 12.40 Rex the Runt 12.50 FILM: The Set-Up “There’s no such thing as a realistic sporting film” – Wathan on this boxing biopic.

6.00 HTV News and Weather Moving into June, PhotoDesk got unjustifiably fingered in a dirty tricks campaign. Lee from Alfie evaded Gemma again, everyone was a legend or a fuck, the truth was kept from Scouse, backs were massaged (not by Mark’s mum though), and we had a rubbish birthday. 6.15 ITV News; Weather 6.30 Bruce's Price Is Right 7.00 New You've Been Framed! 8.00 Heartbeat 9.00 Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? 10.00 The Frank Skinner Show 10.40 ITV Weekend News 11.00 The South Bank Show 12.00 It Ain't Necessarily So 12.35 The Web Review 1.00 FILM: Malone “Should have been about Bugsy Malone really” – Wathan 2.40 Survival Special 3.35 Cybernet 4.05 ITV Nightscreen 5.30 ITV Early Morning News July, a long hot summer indeed. Champagne on the head and the 60,000 ugliest people in the world were forgotten as Joel Plaskett, John Falco and a gak attack ruled the roost.

7.30 Y Sioe Gelf 8.00 Dechrau Canu Dechrau Canmol 8.30 Y Stafell Ddirgel 9.35 Newyddion 9.50 Secrets of the Dead: Who Burnt Rome? 10.50 FILM: Leon 12.55 Witness 1.55 FILM: Genghis Khan

7.00 5 News and Sport 7.30 The History of Britain from the Air: The Victorians “This is the happiest day of my life,” claimed a postgrad one day in September. If Joe had managed to feed the horse in the same month, he would have probably said the same. Elsewhere? Job was shit, ginger warriors emerged, and Uncle Ossie’s sister was lusted after. Oh, and we drunk more than we’ve ever drunk in our lives. 8.00 Science of Shark Attacks October: the buffoon ring rung, some Jewish kids ran around, everyone was on telly, Janice Long was a loser and arrogance was a turnon. 9.00 FILM: The Final Cut 11.00 The FBI Files: Crime Spree 12.00 Poltergeist: The Legacy 12.50 Golf: Challenge Tour 1.15 NFL Live: Baltimore Ravens v Pittsburgh Steelers 4.50 NHL Replay And so to November. Sweary straws broke several Iraqi camels’ backs and launched TV Desk into the spotlight. Kate gave it two weeks, fajitas were awkward, words healed, cherries were popped and a Labradford side-project drove a man wild.

STAYING IN TONIGHT? Call for the latest student deals

CH4. As S4C except: 6.00 Max Bear 6.10 Max Bear 7.15 Blue's Clues 7.40 CatDog 8.10 Investigators 8.30 One World 9.00 T4: Blunt 9.30 T4: Popworld 10.30 T4: Hollyoaks 12.30 T4: Shipwrecked 3 1.00 T4: Shipwrecked 1.30 T4: Smash Hits Tour 3.10 T4: Gorillaz 3.40 FILM: The Homecoming 5.30 Channel 4 News 6.20 Return to Loch Ness 8.00 8.15 True Stories – Battle Centre 8.30 10.00 FILM: U-Turn 12.20 Football Italia – La Partita 1.25 World Wrestling Federation 2.15 Masters Football 3.05 Driven 3.35 Bull 4.25 Secret Lives: Jeremy Thorpe 5.15 Countdown August? August was bittersweet, but bomb. Brah. jjr_nacallows took the interweb by storm, Primal Scream made a lady very excited... but Believe In The Loft ruled Berkshire with trust-Ready trousers and a Mercury mashup.

CHOICE The FBI Files: Crime Spree Channel 5, 11.00pm

(029) 2022 9977



Documentary series looking behind the scenes at the work of the FBI's crime laboratory. In the summer of 1984, a couple embarked on a crime spree which spanned six states and left eight

Monarch of the Glen BBC1 Time am/pm

Bruce’s Price is Right ITV 6.30pm

The Frank Skinner Show ITV 10.00pm

Wild: Meerkats Divided BBC2 6.00pm

Sunday 16 December



Today’s Highlights



people dead. This programme details how the FBI co-ordinated law-enforcement efforts throughout the country in order to bring the pair to justice. This has particular resonance in the current... oh I can’t be arsed with this. Can I use this space to say thanks to the rest of TV Desk, Sarah and all other relevant GR types and give an Oxide & Neutrinostyle UP MIDDLE FINGER to all the people who’ve complained. We’re drinking Haterade for Christmas.


WANTED Meeting Times: ■ Monday 1.15pm News Features Sport

Arts Books Classifieds Comment Competitions Crossword Executive Committee

■ Wednesday 1.30pm News Update ■ Wednesday 2.15pm

Features Film Games Interviews Letters Listings Music



Books Games Film

Rough Guide Sport Voxpop

Music Features

TV Guide

Gair Rhydd is looking for enthusiastic and imaginative... ● writers ● designers ● web programmers ● photographers ● production assistants Visit us at our media penthouse Gair Rhydd, 4th Floor Students’ Union, Tel: 02920 781434 or 781436 Fax: 02920 781407 Email:



The Gair Rhydd Features Section Free Word 708

‘Tis the season to be jolly

Christmas – the most exciting and meaningful time of the year or just an excuse to go home for a few weeks to do your washing? Whatever your view, features offers you its guide to surviving the festive season


HRISTMAS: AH, the stress of it all. What to buy, what to ask for, which parties to attend and which to snub...the choices at this time of year are endless. But despite the inevitable crises, quarrels and family dramas, we always look forward to Christmas with skyhigh expectations. Will we ever learn? As the winter evenings draw in earlier and earlier, anticipation mounts for what is often the high point of the social calendar. Society parties, club balls, office do’s and family gatherings, it’s a whirlwind of activity, a time to stuff those essays, cram in a bit of late-night shopping and party ‘til dawn dressed as Santa’s little helper. This formula seems age-old, engraved in stone and a million miles from the religious and humanitarian issues espoused at your school Christmas services. Important as these are to the spirit of the whole shebang, it tends to be the presents, Christmas

Even the most hard-hearted, cynical bastard cannot but fail to feel slightly roused by the sound of a carol-singing choir (harking back to our school carol concerts) or of old Cliff crooning about Mistletoe and Wine

dinner and family gatherings that have the biggest emphasis. And Christmas is stressful enough for us poor students what with those looming exams and essays to finish, so that is why here at gair rhydd we have come up a few ideas to help you survive the Christmas period. And hopefully to survive it without guilt, knowing that you are not alone in your desire to burn your little brother or eat your usual weekly amount in one sitting. It’s the first rule at Christmas, whether you think you’re on a diet or not. You cannot, whatever you do, avoid eating twenty times your body weight on Christmas Day. Don’t fight it, have that ninth mince pie, sixth glass of champagne, twenty-third liqueur chocolate and finish all three selection boxes before breakfast. And don’t forget to have at least three brussell sprouts with Christmas dinner. It’s tradition! Neither can the family feud be entirely avoided, as much as we would like peace on earth and goodwill to all men. Top tip in the office for dealing with annoying relatives isn’t really a corker, but try it anyway: erm...breathe. Deeply and slowly. So no matter if your Gran tells you that you look tired/ fat/ awful with that new haircut or if your mum scolds you for not helping with the washing up, take a few deep breaths and it’ll all be hunky dory. We promise. Sort of. It’s Christmas – season of goodwill and all that. So you can’t kill old people. It’s just not part of the Christmas spirit. If they really begin to do your head in you could try going for a walk to calm down. Round the block, to see your other half, to Timbuktu if that’s what it takes. Or make like Madonna, Geri or some other yoga-loving swanky type and do some relaxation exercises. Breathe out, then breathe in and tense every muscle in the lower body you can. Then breathe out and relax those muscles but tense your tummy muscles. Exhale then inhale and tense upper body muscles. Let out all your breath in a big sigh and relax completely. And repeat several times. Just not at the dinner table or they might think you’re having a funny turn. Don’t forget to practice in the mirror your “Oh thank you Auntie Maureen! I’ve always wanted a brown cardigan” speech. Just don’t go overboard with “Oooh! What a lovely colour, so reminds of something...” Being honest is far too painful and time-consuming. Oxfam is, after all, a very worthy cause. Although do get the receipts if they’re offered. You can always swap The Encyclopedia of British Screwdrivers for the latest bonk-buster or even, dare I suggest it, a course book.

FATHER CHRISTMAS: prepares for the big day

Christmas music, coupled with a few fairy lights, actually makes the time of year what it is. Forget the gaudy trees, brandy butter and turkey; even the most hard-hearted, cynical bastard cannot but fail to feel slightly roused by the sound of a carol-singing choir (harking back to our school carol concerts) or of old Cliff crooning about Mistletoe and Wine. It has the same effect as Raymond Briggs The Snowman, the film aired every Christmas Day for the last million years, and what is surely as institutional as the Queen’s speech. Put all this aside though and we come down to the whole reason for Christmas – the giving and receiving gifts in celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ. But, although presents are lovely, it’s not really what

the day has come to be about as we approach our (supposedly) mature years. And this is why Christmas can actually be the hardest time of the year. Amongst all the jokes about annoying aunts, crap TV repeats and the big, fat man in his ill-fitting red uniform, Christmas is a family time. It is a time of nostalgia, regression to childish behaviour and for Victorian-style orgies over food. For those alone at this time of year, or apart from loved ones, it can be a trial. With the current world situation, we would do well to remember that we are the lucky ones. The day may have lost much of its religious significance for some people, but the message remains the same. We should strive for peace on earth and teach goodwill to all.

FocusFocusFocus INSIDE FOCUS THIS WEEK: Friends Reunited making enemies • Imaginary friends • Rachel Harrison out and about • Whatever happened to... • Popscene

Focus • 16

Gair Rhydd Monday 10 December 2001

Friends Reunited making enemies

Sian Williams exposes the new craze of meeting up with old classmates online and slating the teachers that made school hell


including the release of the offender’s identifying information to the police or any individual they have defamed. However it does point out that each message posted cannot be screened for offensive remarks, as is the case for many Internet sites. FriendsReunited say they “certainly won’t be closing down the site. The purpose of the site is to reunite old friends and to remember your school days in a fun way. The teacher boards are just one added element of it that seem to have created quite a stir”. On entering the teaching profession you must be prepared the fact that you will be disliked by some of your students. Although the use of internet message boards is inappropriate to broadcast such views, it is also understood that much of what is posted in such forums is untrue and must be taken with a pinch of salt. The Internet is full of information that cannot always be taken as fact. Ensuring that everything reported on the Internet is truthful would not only be an almost impossible task, but would defeat the purpose of many Internet sites. Hands up those who have never pretended to be a six-foot blonde in a chat room?

the bikeshed in the garden. I played with my imaginary companions very intensely. If we went out somewhere in the car, I’d go outside half an hour before we were due to leave, so I could get the horses ready and tie them to the car. I’d also go and ride my horses regularly in the garden. I don’t really remember when my imaginary animals disappeared, but it was definitely before I went to secondary school. When I was older, however, I invented a country called Subrokratien. Years later I found simple maps I had drawn of this country and I had also written a quite comprehensive summary of its main features, such as language, religion, economy and government. I also made up a whole bunch of people from this country, and I would take turn in ‘being’ them. I would speak the language I had invented, ‘Subrokratisch’, which wasn’t grammatical or anything, just a jumble of fancy sounding nonsense-words, and I’d have conversations with the other people (all teenagers) from the country. I think I probably stopped with this after a year or two, when I had other stuff to do like being a teenager, going out partying, getting pissed, pulling people and all that other craziness. Right. Hands up who by now thinks I am a complete nutter. If I am indeed crazy, then I need to tell you that that means about a third of the population are as bonkers as me. There are, surprisingly, quite a few studies on the imaginary companion phenomena. Results on the prevalence of imaginary companions in children range from 6 to 60% of 3-6 year olds! There are three kinds of imaginary friends: personifications (that is having a toy that becomes ‘real’, like the toy tiger in the comic strip ‘Calvin and Hobbes’ – and how many of you out there had a ‘Blankie’?), friends that are completely created in the fantasy of the child (like my animals), and impersonations (where the child actually IS the imagined person, animal, or even object, like when I was an inhabitant of my made-up country). When a child makes up a whole country or even world, he or she, according to the literature, has created a paracosm, like my country Subrokratien. Obviously, as a lot of you might have thought yourself, there has been a lot of research into why children create such imaginary companions,

and what it says about their character and personality. Older studies have suggested these children are potentially psychotic and are creating an imaginary world in order to escape from reality. For my particular case, a study of 1946 reports that children who create animals are especially poor in adjusting to people and generally have “unsatisfactory or unacquired human friends”! (I might need to tell you that I did and do actually have a lot of friends and great ones too). The trend nowadays though is to treat imaginary friends as a sign of a very active imagination and great potential for creativity, so definitely a good sign. Studies generally tend to draw a correlation to other, related areas: so children who create imaginary friends tend to actually be very sociable and have a good network of friends, they tend to be very creative, even still when they are adults, and show high potential in aspects of emotional intelligence, such as insight, empathy, and sensitivity. Some research even suggests imaginary friends to be a sign of higher intelligence, although that is not yet proven. So, against all initial assumptions that me and all other people out there who had some kind of imaginary companion should be locked away forever, WE ARE NOT CRAZY AND ABNORMAL (in fact, the number of people with clinical conditions such as Multiple Personality Disorder who also had imaginary friends in childhood is very small). Having an imaginary companion in childhood and after is therefore a ‘good thing’, and definitely desirable. Sorry you guys that never had one, but I can assure you there is no proof in the literature that not having one means there is something wrong with you – believe me, I’ve heard such concerns! I have recently become really interested in the imaginary companion phenomena, as you might have noticed. I have found that people generally love to talk about their imaginary childhood friends (definitely do), and I would therefore like to ask anyone who had an imaginary friend of some sort to get in touch with me via the gair rhydd, so that I can feel better about exposing myself to the huge, critical and oh so mocking body of students, who are probably already taking the piss out of Wallo and my horses.

Me and my imaginary friends

There’s no longer any need to be ashamed to admit you have/ had imaginary friends. Joni Willin explains why


ou might have just decided to read this article because it sounds like it was written by one of those sad old people who don’t have any friends and therefore start drifting off into their own little world which consists only of imaginary characters. No, I am (luckily) not yet one of those people who talk to themselves (at least not all of the time). This is actually a short story about my childhood. When I was about five or six old, before any of my sisters were born, my parents took me on holiday to the seaside. I remember there being a horse that I was allowed to ride once or twice, and there might have been a dog or two there as well. It all started then, that I ‘created’ this imaginary dog that I would take for walks along the beach. For me, this dog, called Wallo, was quite a fantastic playmate, since he acted just like a real dog, only he wasn’t really there, of course. I’d call him on the beach to catch up with us and I’d throw sticks in the water for him to fetch. My dad thought this was all a hilarious joke and made up his own imaginary jellyfish called Quallo (after the German word ‘Qualle’, meaning jellyfish). Having a dog was not enough (funnily enough I’m afraid of dogs in real life) – I had some horses too. Both the dogs and the horses followed me home after the holiday and the dog slept at the bottom of my bed to protect me at night, while the horses (a full herd of thirteen) all lived in

PIC: Jenni Blurton

f you haven’t yet heard the buzz about FriendsReunited then where have you been? FriendsReunited is an Internet site that aims to help people get in touch with old school friends and share memories of the “best days of your life”. For those of us who love a good gossip it is the perfect way to find out what people from your school have done since you last saw them, enabling you to avoid the embarrassing small talk at the local night club where everyone congregates during university breaks. Personally, after one too many vodka jellies I’m usually left at the end of the night wondering why I stood talking to someone for two hours who I never actually got on with at school. Give me a telephone to call people I want to catch up with and an Internet site to satisfy my nosiness about those I don’t and I’ll be happy. On the FriendsReunited Website you can find out free of charge what those in your year-group have done since leaving school or, for a small fee, the site also allows you to submit your contact details and get in touch with long lost friends. Having been to 5 different schools myself before coming to Cardiff University I know only too well how easy it is to lose touch with friends. Since becoming a member of the site I have managed to contact some of

the friends that I lost touch with after my family moved to a different part of the country when I was younger. The website’s own ‘success stories’ section alone is testimony to the view that the service provided by this site is extremely useful. However, if the National Association of Head Teachers has its way, this service will have to come to an end. The association is considering taking action to shut down the website amid allegations that the site is being used as a vehicle for offensive, defamatory and insulting comments to be made about their members. The use of this, or any other, website, to make deliberately abusive and false remarks cannot be condoned, but why put an end to such a successful scheme because of inappropriate behaviour by a minority of its members. Surely anyone entering a chat room or other internet forum could assume the identity of another person, or make defamatory comments about somebody, including an old teacher, this is an accepted element of the internet and the anonymity it provides. Upon joining each member is referred to the terms and conditions of the website. These terms clearly state that the site will not tolerate the post of “false, misleading, slanderous, libellous or inaccurate information about others”, and clearly set out the consequences of such misuse,

Focus • 17

Bah, Humbug! Gair Rhydd Monday 10 December 2001

Most will agree that Christmas just isn’t the same once you discover Father Christmas isn’t real. Felix Inman reminisces over those glorious childhood christmas’ and the shocking demise of Saint Nic


hey live in the shed at the top of the garden. They’re quite shy and don’t really like the sunlight. The forbies and the goobles only come out at night and you have to be quiet if you want to see them. Rewind the memory recorder 15 years and these creatures actually did exist in the minds of two dungareewearing children, way back in the playful arena that is childhood. They were what reality-junkies would call ‘imaginary friends’, but for us, these timid, dwarf-like incarnations were part of our world. We shared breakfast, toys, a few ‘knock-knocks’ and at times even took them Hobnobs, which the adults must have only assumed were for our own private munching. This was a place where imagination remained unquashed by those long legged guardians who cooked us food, but allowed instead to run riot, a place where talk of friendly dogs from syrup-coated lands, and tales of playing golf with blue-haired monsters were as commonplace as sugar on tables. Father Christmas too was part of this secret wonderland, even though we didn’t regard him with such high esteem as the others as he wasn’t product of our own concoction. But we did, nevertheless, indulge in the fantasy of Fatman falling down the chimney for a few years, which tending to provoke a lot of excitement during the festive season. Religion failed to make an appearance however, save the nativity play, which served as a comic-style puppet show on Christmas day. Along with the food, the odd carol and the please-being-nice- to-auntie aspect, Father Christmas was essentially representative of our childhood Christmas. Despite the fact that I wasn’t up for giving Rudolf all the carrots (I ruled as governor of the vegetable drawer) and didn’t think it just to poison Fatman with the toxic smell of whiskey, we still joined in the nightly ritual at the fireplace. The night of alcohol

Irony piles on irony, as, in this post-Christian age, there are indications that Father Christmas, the figure bequeathed to us by our friend Nick, is achieving quasi-religious status

indulgence was Santa’s, but the morning belonged to us as we hurried to the sitting room to find the carrots devoured, the glass empty and the customary offerings circling the tree. But as the years moved on, cynicism invaded our thoughts. We began to question the existence of such a character, and answers weren’t always that convincing. I remember the time when I stopped believing, but seeing how excited the folks became at the thought of disguising Fatman’s footprints on the roof, (always wondered why my old man’s ankle was bandaged up at Christmas) and frightened that if I didn’t continue believing I wouldn’t receive the chocolate I wrote on the list, I pretended to believe. But gradually, I think it was just boredom with the repetition of it all that usurped the feeling of that fake, apprehensive wonder. Later on I read about St Nicholas. Poor bastard. The fourth-century priest was apparently a self-effacing chap who preferred to be out of the whole limelight thaang. A dab hand at good works, he wasn’t the sort of character who purposefully went out looking for praise. So when he saw a struggling family in need of comfort, under the guise of financial aid, he decided to scramble onto their roof and lob a few coins down the chimney by way of an anonymous gift. So far, so good. But when the coins fell into a stocking left drying in the fireplace, the family were woken out of their despondency and went out to discover their philanthropic visitor. Alas for Nick, far from slipping delicately into the shadows of the unassuming do-gooders, he earned himself a place in history: 16 centuries on, he is known to children everywhere as the generous, cheery Christmas present-bearer. Now things seem to have gone from bad to worse for this bashful gentleman of mountaineering potential. Of 1,200 eight-to-16-year-olds questioned by some media agency, 67% say they associate this time of year with the redsuited, white-bearded version of St Nick, Father Christmas: only 8% link Christmas with Christ himself. At first sight, this would seem further conformation that Christmas is crassly commercialised, merely materialistic. But irony piles on irony, as, in this postChristian age, there are indications that Father Christmas, the figure bequeathed to us by our friend Nick, is achieving quasi-religious status. This went so far as to force some church leaders to launch a campaign to end what they called ‘the cult of Father Christmas’ and restore Nick as the true symbol of the festive season. Are we perhaps approaching a time when Fatman is regarded as more sacred than God? Might sound fanciful, but look at the controversy in Australia last week when a primary school teacher was sacked after she told a class of six-year olds that Santa does not exist and that it was their parents who bought them presents. A vicar got into trouble last year too in mentioning to a group of seven-to-11year-olds that it was all bah! humbug. By this age, the reserve teacher and the vicar evidently expected that most children would have worked out that a stocky OAP in fancy dress was unlikely to be able to squeeze down the flue of a ‘burns as real’ gas fire with a bag of Ferrari’s finest miniatures over his shoulder. By figures of presumed authority

FATHER CHRISTMAS: Innocent ideal or corrupting influence?

divulging this information to children, lips were reduced to quivers in many households, not children’s lips of course: most of them took the news on the chin and merely rerouted their Christmas lists from Santa’s website towards Dad’s mobile phone. No, it was the parents who ended up gutted mackerels – they had been hoping that their ickle wonders would still be believers at 18. Or at least until croptops and pimples became a part of everyday vocabulary. But why do parents care so much? If the vicar had told them there was no God, it is hard to imagine there would have been more of an outcry. Perhaps less: while some children are raised as non-believers in God, almost none are raised as non-believers in Father Christmas. It is no coincidence that Santa’s stature has grown over the last four or five decades in inverse proportion to the decline of belief in God because, however happy one is to cast off the idea of deity and church, people are not so comfortable with the idea of bringing up children whose lives are untouched by spirituality. People embrace the idea that their kids believe in this god-like figure who sweeps across the globe bringing good fortune to all as, in our hearts, we mourn the fact that we don’t believe in him anymore: we love the simplicity of the tale because, in an unfair and madly complex world, the story of Father Christmas is a powerful parable about equality, justice, and putting children first. Many parents yearn to give their children a glimpse of that magic and mysticism that so infused the lives of our ancestors, but which seems so lacking in our own age. They become mortified when their spawn discovers the truth – that Father Christmas is merely an obese pensioner with no motional ability, let alone flying aids.

They mourn the loss of ‘innocence’ in their children; but they don’t stop to think what it means to children to discover they’ve been told porkies for years. It is probably the first time in a child’s life when the landscape alters, and things that seem cast-iron suddenly start to erode. Then there are those places where Fatman has failed to make a starappearance – and unsurprisingly

enough, it is in those families and countries where a strong faith-basis is retained. For them, he is usually relegated to the speaker of an unheard line in the chorus. After all, if you really do believe in angels singing and a star leading the way to a tiny baby born to save the world, then a fat bloke in a red suit spotted on a fourth-century rooftop, or four-eyed dwarfs in frost-ridden sheds probably don’t hold a candle, do they?

Our Tip Top Xmas Presents Here at gair rhydd, we know how difficult those allimportant Christmas presents are to buy. So we’ve discovered a few pressies that’ll get you in their good books at least until Boxing Day.

I like you...but not that much (budget):

Socks - Let’s face it we can’t have too many. Especially if they’re funky ones. Candles - Check out groovy aromotherapy smells, funny shapes like the penis candles in Ann Summers. Chocolate - After the cheap crap in the advent calendar, they’ll need some decent munchies.

We get on ok so I’ll get you something (mid-Price): Video/DVD - This Christmas you can’t go wrong with Bridget Jones’ Diary, Shrek or splurge out on the Godfather DVD collection Classy Read - Hollywood Wives: The New Generation by Jackie Collins will give your Nan a thrill, Red Dog by Louis de Bernieres or The Last Hero by Terry Pratchett might keep Dad quiet during Christmas Day Eastenders. Alcohol - Never fails to bring joy and laughter. Mine’s a double!

Can I please have a shag now? (expensive):

PS2 - The Playstation2 may have a price tag of £269.99 but it is queen bee of all things gaming. Beg, borrow or steal one for a loved one this Christmas. Tickets - Football, rugby, cricket, Kylie, Madonna, the Circus, the Ballet, Opera, Armadillo shooting, Badger watching... A small Caribbean island - If you’ve got a bit of spare change lying around...

Focus • 18

gairrhydd 2001-2002

Was brought to you by... Editor Sarah Hodson GRiP Editor Jon Bayley and Michael Parsons News James Bladon and Lydia Kirby Sport Michael Pearlman, Tristan Thomas and Chris Wathan Focus Ed Holmes, Becky Pash and Charlotte Spratt Books David Gates Arts LaDonna Hall and Lizzie Brown Music Gemma Curtis and Maria Lane Film Jonathan Steven Games Chris Faires Get There Luke Holland Comment Sian Birch Blagging Matt Harvey Photographers Mike Parsons and Jenni Blurton Television Charlotte Martyn and a homeless man Lovely, lovely Proof Readers Holly Robarts and Zoe Simmons Contributors Dominic O’Neill, Jane Evans, Alaistair Houghton, Mark Cobley, Rhiannon Davies, Suzanne Deller, David Lindsall, Suzanne Carter, Beth Kenure, Tami Miller, Alex Macpherson, Rob Jackson, Jamie Fullerton, John Widdop, Andy Parsons, Nick McDonald, Laura Sykes, Maria Thomas, Anthony Lloyd, Kaite Brunt, Gareth Lloyd, Vics Richards, Rich ‘David P’ Moore, Mat Croft, Pat McCaren, Nike Ogubjumelo, Paul Jones, Ban Hammond, Katherine Moore, Rob Laing, Paul Barnett, Chris Griffin, Pauline Cheung, Adrian Jones, Emma Osborne, Adrian Everett, Charlott Lyon, Dan Onions, Steve Webber, Chris Pietryka, John Rowlands, Sian Williams, Joni Willin, Felix Inman, Rachel Harrison, Kathy Wilshere, Lizzy Green, Daniel Barnes, Jim Rosenthal, Neil Blain, Nabil Hassan, Gavin Harris, Laura Welsh, Natalie Lewis, David Williams, J. L. O’Sullivan and Matt Greenhall.

Contact us Address Gair Rhydd Cardiff University Students’ Union Park Place Cardiff CF10 3QN Telephone Editorial – (029) 20781434/436 Advertising – (029) 20781416 E-mail Visitors Find us on the 4th floor of the Students’ Union

Rachel Harrison

Lady who lunches This week, our girl about town dumps her geezer and slaps on her lippy and heads off to town with her crew to check out the best that Cardiff has to offer on a girlie night out


think I was particularly well-behaved last week in exploring the best places to chill out after a hard days essay writing. I am sure my mum would be proud. Despite the fact that most of us still have extensive amounts of work to complete, I have decided that it can be postponed for another week. I am sure that I work better under pressure anyway. This week then is party week and given that I am a girl and I am blessed with girlie friends who are far from quiet, I thought I would explore the best girlie bar crawl in Cardiff. So sorry lads – at the risk of being called sexist, this week is for the gals who can bear to be separated from the boys for one evening of feminine frollicks. Every girl knows there are several essentials for a seriously good girlie night. Firstly, I know its sad and it really kills me to say it but we need some men – preferably fit ones with arses like coffee beans and stomachs like washboards, but unfortunately this is Cardiff so my advice is drink to lots before you go out. (Vodka is just the best invention ever – clearly made by a woman). I feel it is necessary to point out here to all the worried boyfriends who are picturing all kinds of outrageous behaviour from your girlfriends – you have no need to worry – unlike you men, women are perfectly able to control themselves. This does not obviously rule out the potential to harmlessly flirt or in the case of the sexy singles – you know what you do. At all times places with letchy old men are definitely out of bounds, and similarly all venues

full of highly scary jealous-prone testosterone taking females are also avoided at all costs. At no point in your drunken flirty state do you want to be asked “are you looking at my man bitch”? If at any point you do incur such a situation it is highly unadvisable to try to make friends with the girl. Simply run. Run like the wind. Alternatively, yank one of the twenty gold hoop earrings from her ear and then run. Therefore, we are looking for top totty, no leaches and no man-girls. Additionally, the atmosphere has to be lively so anywhere where the barman refers to you as “luv” and offers you pork scratchings to “put some meat on your bones” is also not on our list. The second essential is obviously style. Stylish bars are full of stylish people (well usually) hence they are the best for blagging drinks off unsuspecting men with fat wallets, not that I encourage such shameless behaviour. And of course any girl with sufficient girlie-night experience knows that you have to judge your prey well otherwise they may expect something in return, which blatantly is not allowed on a female-only evening until the very end if you really cannot control yourself. Third, an absolutely vital ingredient to a fantastic gal’s evening out is the dance floor. No girlie night is complete without the opportunity to make total tits of yourselves, strutting your stuff and ensuring that you request at least five songs from the DJ for all your mates who you simply have to express your

Gair Rhydd Monday 10 December 2001

love for one more time. The dance floor period of the night can go one of two ways, either you have consumed enough alcohol at this point so that you have reached the ‘everyone loves me and I love everyone’ stage, which frequently extends to total strangers who you feel you have to drag onto the dance-floor so that they can share the love. The other way is that suddenly you are transformed into a sex goddess and every man around simply cannot resist your charms. At this stage, white women suddenly feel that they are black. It is at about this point when you are magically transformed into the fourth member of Destiny’s Child, especially when you perform your greatest move – the booty grind (that ever so tasteful and ‘erotic’ hip movement where your bum practically scrapes the dancefloor) – yes we have all been there and soooo regretted it the next day. However, at the time this is simply the best idea that you have ever had, and lets face it, its really funny so the dance floor is a must. However, at no point do reach the stage of drunkenness where you believe you can breakdance. Here it is clearly up to your friends to control that party beast inside you – unless they are rendered incapable through laughter (which is my excuse - sorry mate!) or have made a very sharp exit, denying all associations with you. Bearing all of these criteria in mind, I was left with loads of options although given that our particularly gorgeous but ridiculously painful shoes, I decided to keep to St Mary’s Street, as everything is pretty close. Firstly, I have to recommended Edwards, the new bar that has just opened up on the street. It is very stylish and modern with marble and glass decor and they have someone to open the door for you when you enter – how ra. This place is definitely full of men with silly amounts of money and the barmen aren’t too bad either (so I am told!). Unfortunately, there is not much room for dancing, hence this is a good first stop as the courage has not yet been built up enough for your funky moves. Plus you can leave any unwanted new acquaintances behind gracefully. The second stop should be Life Bar as this is always a good laugh and the dance-floor and cheesy music are perfect for traditional girlie behaviour and stupid conduct. If your friends are anything like mine, and you have been forced to do numerous hideously tasting shots, by this point you may wish to stay put (which hopefully is not with your head over the toilet just yet). Life stays open until 1.00am so you can dance the night away there. However if you are hard-core and crazy you may want to try out either the old reliable Liquid (although be warned about sweaty letchy men who grope your arse on the dance-floor) or you could go for the new Club V. This is just off St Mary’s Street, towards the Millennium Stadium and is highly fashionable, with really good music and lush sofas so that you can rest your aching feet in preparation for the next bout of booty grinding. Drinks are not cheap though so its best not to check your bank balance before you go.

Whatever happened to...? by Kathy Wilshere G


o on admit it, you must remember mullet haired popster Pugwall from the Australian kids TV series of the same name. The show was all about Peter Unwin George Wall (Pugwall) and his constant struggle to form a successful band and find a girlfriend. He would be confronted by problems every week that would threaten the success of the band or his relationship with the singer Jenny. This usually involved his irritating sister Marmaloid, his parents or the school bullies. Of course, the highlight of every show was the performance of a truly awful song by his band, The Orange Organics. This was composed of Pugwall, Jenny, Bazza, Orfo and Stringbean who were neither very good at singing or playing instruments but that didn’t seem to hinder them much. They ended up eventually winning a record contract with the illustrious Mushroom Records at the end of the second series, Pugwall’s Summer.

Jason Torrens (Pugwall) decided not to continue with acting apart from small roles in other Australian soaps such as Neighbours. Instead, he has apparently formed a band with fellow Orange Organics members Ricky Fleming (Stringbean) and Troy Beckwith (Bazza), who incidentally played Michael Martin in Neighbours! Altogether now “Nobody tells me what to do, no not me......”.


Ralph Macchio

he Karate Kid star Ralph Macchio is now a whopping 41 years old! Astonishingly, he was already in his twenties when he made The Karate Kid trilogy. His first major film role was as Johnny Cade in The Outsiders (1983), alongside Tom Cruise and Matt Dillon. The film won critical acclaim and Ralph was offered the part of Daniel, a teenager who learns karate to fight his school enemies in The Karate Kid (1984). The film was a worldwide hit, but unfortunately it worked against Macchio as he could not shake off his teenage image and subsequently the role never allowed him to grow up. He returned as Daniel in the two sequels to Karate Kid in 1986 and 1989 and had a small role opposite Joe Pesci in My Cousin Vinny in 1992. As the film roles dried up he moved to Broadway, making his debut opposite Robert DeNiro in ‘Cuba and His Teddy Bear’.

He has since toured the world in the play ‘How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying’ and recently appeared on Broadway in ‘Can’t Be Heaven’ as a 1930’s Jazz Musician. He is also apparently working on a forthcoming film called A Good Night to Die with Ally Sheedy. He has been married to actress Phyllis Fiero since 1987 and has two children named Julia and (amusingly) Daniel, suggesting he still has a little nostalgia for his “wax on, wax off ” days.

Gair Rhydd Monday 10th December 2001

Focus • 19

PopScenePopScenePopScene Abbi Shaw ends 2001 with a catatonic celebration of all things that go pop in the night at the Top of the Pops Awards. With enough mention of Ronan and her misguided Westlife politics, this may delight even our most discerning readers

GORGEOUS LOVELY RONAN: being lovely and Wittgensteinian at the same time


he BBC have been exceptionally generous to us in recent weeks, what with the introduction of yet another pop awards ceremony. Now, happily enough, this is a good thing. The industriously tailored Jamie Theakston presided over routines by Westlife, JLo, Westlife, Kylie, Westlife and others as the circus master whips his lions. Perhaps, though, more entertaining than the awards, was the stream of celebrities queuing up to present awards to less famous people. The highlight, certainly for Page Editor and PopScene, was the appearance of Ronan Keating positively towering over Kylie (in less than some clothing). In order to appreciate the hilarity of the situation, the key notion we must be in possession of is that Ronan is, well, pretty damn short. And Kylie was much, much smaller. But this is beside the point,

the point being that Ronan was looking lovely, and if we may say so, exceptionally Wittgensteinian. This entertained us highly, as we waited for dear Ronan to dive for the Popperian Jamie Theakston, brandishing a poker in a momentary act of Communist uprising. Unfortunately, however, whilst Kylie was allowed to sing and prance to her heart’s content, poor Ronan was oppressed into meekly presenting a single award. But, like the nice boy he is, he didn’t complain. Jennifer Lopez did some wiggling about on a stage for a while, and we were permitted to see that her behind really is the size of Africa. Wheatus, oh, bloody Wheatus, made a highly unpleasant noise and displayed even less endearing haircuts, whilst dreadful ten year-olds screamed at them out of habit. They must learn, these kids, that screaming only encourages them! Tom Jones faffed about on stage for a while as well, looking a little frail and somewhat logistically unsound as he croaked his way through a song that I don’t even remember, whilst being continuously assailed by a plethora of mainly naked dancing girls. Westlife fairly dominated the entire affair though. In fact, were I not a less suspicious kind of person, I would have believed that these awards were manufactured as a Westlife propaganda platform. They appeared a little inebriated at various points, and I feel that they shattered their cover slightly, as they shouted down the microphone incoherently. They mainly wore some very bothering black suits, which gave them the air of the SS, amongst the brightly coloured flora and fauna of the world of pop. Oh, and they committed the absolutely unforgivable crime of moving within two feet of the utterly appaling Mariah Carey, who stood on stage and warbled for ninety

three years about how tortured and traumatised she is and how terrible it is to have sold so many records and to be continually awarded vast quantities of nonsensical accolades that she more than obviously does not deserve. Speaking of absolute horrors, I was terribly upset to see Mick Hucknall, not only being permitted to live and breathe (a right that should have been withdrawn from him some time ago) but actually being allowed to appear on a public stage. Simply horrible, the whole affair. Thankfully the entire event was redeemed by the marvellous Travis, who looked nice in a corner, looked a bit squiffy on stage, and then sang “Sing” ever so pleasantly. Fran Healy is officially the only person in the world capable of looking very sexy through a considerable quantity of beard. Furthermore, the boy quite clearly knows how to accessorise – his flat cap was very this season. The untimely and unquestionably unfortunate death of George Harrison spared us Sir Paul McCartney’s witterings about freedom, and instead we were treated to Travis’ particularly beautiful rendition of “Here Comes the Sun”, executed in perfect three-part harmony. You may have noticed that, amongst the entirety of this piece, not a single award has been described, acknowledged, or expounded upon. This is for the very good reason that awards are simply not the point of ceremonies, and thus, I don’t think I need to waste my time and space in referring you to them. Let the lessons learnt concern not who is or is not best Male Solo Artist, or Best Female Soloist Legs, but instead stretch to nothing more than the achieving of the understanding that Ronan is a nicer boy than all of Westlife tied up in a sack, and Travis are just lovely, lovely, lovely.

FRAN TRAVIS: looking a bit like a tramp but somehow rather interesting.

2001: We did Harry Potter and the it our way Philosopher’s Moan

In our last edition of the year, with no mention of the C-word, Lizzy Green gives a wonderfully comprehensive roundup of 2001 on page 6 (now page 5) of Focus


s you will no doubt have noticed, the page construction team, bar one, has an overwhelming obsession with all things pop, particularly Westlife, and of course Ronan. PopScene has taken the liberty of a weekly indulgence in this area of entertainment, using the excuse of the page’s welfare to purchase the monthly edition of Top of the Pops Magazine – as if she needed an excuse! Yet all her worthy ramblings have kept Page Editor in his element for the entire term. Networking, meanwhile has taken a more sober line this term, immersing herself in the task of locating a relatively famous person to track down and interview each week. She has made relatively few connections, however, revealing just how elusive and unsociable

celebrities can be. She did manage to hunt down a few very charming and compliant young men brushing with the fringes of the limelight. Amongst many contributions from random members of the world as we know it, postcards from the Czech Republic have no doubt caused a great deal of consternation, especially within the gair rhydd offices. Networking swears on everything worthwhile in life that our Czech correspondent does in actual fact exist. As if any of us could make up such Kafka-esque references. Page Editor meanwhile has successfully shuffled around bits of text for the entire term, as well as writing some relevant and necessary rants, concerning, most notably biscuits, and queues,or in other words, all things British, and of course, Ronan.

Filtering the lunches


or the forthcoming holiday, we will mostly be doing lunch with the likes of Gareth and William from Pop Idols, Wittgenstein, Simon

Pegg, Ronan, Abbi’s friend Richard, the artist Peggy Seymour, Sir Rev Dr Rory Smith FRS, Elijah Wood and Sean Bean, Dame Margaret Shepard MSc, Sir

Edward Brett AWH HBA, the geologist Miss MJ Filtness, the R. Hon. Jamie Hindry, Stephen Fisher, the eternally squiffy Kym Green.

For what we hope will be the last time, Daniel Barnes is complaining about Harry Potter and the fact that there isn’t enough time in the world. But this time he’s actually seen the film


aving actually seen Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone I must now, not such much retract all my angry and vengeful statements about JK Rowling, but just reproject them onto Chris Columbus. I honestly don’t know what made him think it was a good idea to make a film of what is primarily a children’s book two and a half hours long. Even if the children love the book, I don’t believe they are entirely comfortable and happy about sitting there for two and a half hours. Children are capricious by nature and get bored easily, especially when they are required to sit quietly in the dark for that long. Furthermore, what makes him think that the busy postmodern adult parents of these children have time to sit through such a tortuous torrent of plastic Hollywood rubbish. The thing that incensed me most was the fact that it appeared to me that, even with $100million, he couldn’t afford (or be bothered) to build proper exterior backdrops. Mr Columbus seemed to think it was oh so modern and clever to have computer generated backgrounds, which, for me, ruined the whole effect. The film would have been vastly improved upon if he had just taken the time and a little effort to produce realistic surroundings for this absurd Americanised tale to unfold in. A disappointment from the outset – with that awfully dull and inexpressive opening shot of the Privet Drive sign – the film rumbled along as painfully and as uneventfully as the Hogwarts Express on lithium. Following the book as they did, left no scope for the

audience to be surprised at any point. I know people are always complaining that films don’t replicate the story of the book, but I think it is a film director’s duty to give the audience a little something extra than the author of the book had to offer (a tall order, I know, when the author in question is Rowling). The film, however, is worth seeing if only for the beautiful aerial shot of London, including the Houses of Parliament and the wonderfully dirty River Thames. The second factor that may make it worthwhile is the plethora of celebrities that pepper the cast: Robbie Coltrane is great and very amusing, Julie Walters is just as good or bad (depending on your politics) as she always is, and Alan Rickman’s and Zoe Wannamaker’s worryingly brief appearances are a breath of fresh air in the acrid smog of nonsense that this film billows out into the cinema. The point I am wanting to make here is that whilst Harry Potter might be great, (even though Daniel Radcliffe is as wooden as a pine Welsh dresser), we just surely haven’t got time for this kind of film – it’s too long, unbelievable, and too much of a face of film making for postmodern people to have time to sit through, because at the end of it you are left with that awful ‘damn, I have so many better things to do’ feeling. Therefore, in our last issue of 2001, I leave you with the feeling that there just isn’t any time for anything, least of all Harry Potter. As a nation, we have to get over it and get on with our lives. Next year I will try not to be so obsessed by the lack of constructively used time in the world. Until then, use your time well.















one small step, one big saving on your motor insurance students save up to 30% with Endsleigh call now or call in for immediate cover

029 2039 8222

Joint Students’ Union, Cardiff University.








24 ● Sport

gairrhydd, Monday 10 December 2001

WRU faces new crisis RUGBY UNION To celebrate the festive season, gair rhydd invites you to enter our sports quiz. Answers to the gair rhydd office, 4th floor of the Union after the Christmas break or email Enjoy it. Michael Pearlman GR sports editor.

1: In the Olympic games, what five sports make up the modern pentathlon?

2: Who is the only player to score in a Manchester, Merseyside and Glasgow derby?

3: Where did Ian Rush begin his career? 4: Paul Ince has played for five clubs in his career. Who are they? 5: Who scored the goal that knocked Wales out of their only World

Cup finals appearance? 6: What was the name of Stokes old ground before moving to the Britannia stadium? 7: Where and when was the WRU formed? 8: Who were the third place teams in the last four Rugby World Cups? 9: Name every winner of the Heineken European Cup since its inception? 10: Who is currently top of the UK and Ireland association Croquet rankings? 11: Which car firm made a successful return to the Le Mans 24hour race after 71 years? 12: Name the four stadiums which have staged Rugby World Cup finals? 13: December 1997 was the last time the Tigers lost a league game at Welford Road. But who were their opponents? 14: Who in 2001 became the first man to win the World Match Play in 3 different decades? 15: Name the horse that won the Cheltenham Champion Hurdle three times in a row in the 80’s? 16: Who won the 400m at the European Championships in 1994, denying Roger Black his third successive win in the event? 17: Who is the only Test Captain to take a hatrick (and has done so twice)? 18: Where was the British Officer stationed when he invented Snooker in 1875? 19: Who was the first player to score a maximum 147 break in World Championship Snooker? 20 How many players are in a netball team?

Chris Wathan A BLEAK winter of uncertainty lies ahead for the Welsh Rugby Union. Whilst the ill-fated PFA strike has occupied column inches of the sporting press for some time now, an air of dissatisfaction has been quietly whistling its way through the corridors of the WRU. Yet the repercussions of a strike in Wales would be far more grave than the Christmas TV schedules being void of a few football games. The Premier Rugby Partnership Wales have, in no uncertain terms, threatened to withdraw their players from this season’s Six nations games unless their demands are met. The ‘Gang of Six’ – Bridgend, Cardiff, Llanelli, Newport, Pontypridd and Swansea – are adamant that the WRU should slash the Premier division to six teams by next season or their contracted players will be denied permission to represent the land of their fathers in any forthcoming games. And the victims of the bully’s demands? Caerphilly, Ebbw Vale and Neath who would suddenly find themselves playing in the lower echelons of rugby’s pyramid, with little chance of bouncing back. For once a certain New Zealander – who has often found himself criticised in this column for openly supporting such movements – has nothing to do with the proposed cull. For while

Henry’s gripes lie with the need for a decrease in games and an increase in quality, the PRPW’s angst concerns one thing and one thing only. Money. The cry from the self-styled ‘big six’ is that the nine Welsh clubs get a paltry five hundred thousand pounds a year from the governing body, compared with £1.8 million dished out to their cross-border counterparts. By doing away with those “pesky” little valley teams (namely Ebbw, Caer and Neath) it means a bigger pay-day for the city boys. Simple. Don’t worry about the fact that its been the big club’s own over zealous, over ambitious and under-thought spending that has dented the bank balances they are so keen to bolster. Don’t worry about the fact that ‘small’ clubs such as Neath are Wales oldest club and regularly have superior attendance than big bucks neighbours Swansea. Don’t worry about the future of the game, just think of the money. Neath are in fact the WRU’s ace in their hand. The WRU gained acquisition of the market town team when they were declared bankrupt four years ago. Unable to breakaway from the WRU’s leash for their own gains, Neath are the club whose enforced demise would create the biggest uproar from true rugby fans. Through careful spending and an unrivalled youth policy they have risen from the ashes to be challenging for the title this year. And it is not just Neath, for without the Ebbw Vales, Caerphillys, Pontypools and

Aberavons of this world, where are the next generation of players going to come from. How then, the WRU argue, can you axe sides with such tradition and future yet bankroll Bridgend, who despite Leighton Samuel’s millions, are still a long, long way from setting the rugby world alight. Henry’s claim for pooled provincial sides for European competition does hold, as it clearly has the interests of the game’s progression in Wales at heart. But ‘The Gang of Six’ have nothing but their own financial security as the cornerstone of their argument. For the sake of the game in this country, the WRU should stand firm and ride out the storm, which ultimately seems like a load of hot air.

HARRIS: Expensive purchase for one of ‘big six’

HENRY: Could see six nations squad decimated

Got a cold or the flu? Blocked nose, sore throat, headache, aches and pains.....

Travel the world your way


why not visit your local usit CAMPUS branch: YHA Adventure Shop 13 Castle Street, Cardiff CF1 2BS T: (029) 2022 0744 Cardiff University, Students’ Union, Park Place, Cardiff CF1 3QN T: (029) 2064 1133

Call: 0870 240 1010

Have you got time to help us with our research at the Common Cold Centre? If yes, please telephone 0500 655398 (Freephone) or come to the Common Cold Centre. You will be compensated for your time and travel by a cheque payment at the end of the study

Common Cold Centre

Cardiff School of Biosciences, Off Park Place, near the Tower Block Monday - Friday 9.30am - 4.30pm

Sport ● 25

gairrhydd, Monday 10 December 2001

United lose grip on championship FOOTBALL David Williams WITH NEARLY half of the season gone already, the race to become Champions in each of the four divisions couldn’t be much closer. With the crucial Christmas period of matches approaching, the teams in pole position will be hoping to pull away from the pack and cement a serious title challenge. For the first time in almost ten years it is surprising not to find Manchester United at the top of the Premier League, as Barthez and Blanc, the darlings of World Cup 98, continue to cost the champions dearly with spectacular blunders. The FA Cup and Champions League now represent Fergie’s last real chance to add yet another trophy to the Old Trafford cabinet. With five league defeats already this season it could mean an end to a stranglehold on a title that they have won seven times in nine seasons. Their arch rivals Liverpool could be about to step into their place as Champions with a lead of three points and a game in hand over the second placed team. The form of Michael Owen has seen the Merseysiders stake a real claim to be top of the pile come May.

Arsenal, as usual, find themselves in second place with Leeds, Newcastle, Chelsea, Aston Villa and Spurs close behind after excellent starts to the campaign. There is only a two-point gap between Man Utd in eighth and Middlesbrough in fourteenth, which shows just how tight this season is turning out to be. Last season’s surprise package Ipswich, are feeling the strain this time round. They are propping up the table with only nine points from fifteen games. The sight of Derby, Southampton and Leicester near the foot of the table is nothing new and we can expect to see these teams fighting relegation come the end of the season. If the position of the teams at the top of the Premier League is unexpected then the First Division table is like something from a dream to the fans of Burnley, Wolves and Norwich, the current top three. As expected, Coventry and Manchester City are there or thereabouts and with teams such as Birmingham and Watford struggling in mid table they will see this as their best opportunity to get back into the top flight. Stockport’s tenure in the First Division could be up after falling six points behind Barnsley and even further

behind Walsall and Grimsby who could face relegation at the end of the season. Last season’s Division Three Champions Brighton, with the help of their four million pound rated striker Bobby Zamora, have leapt to the top of the tree after amassing 43 points from 21 games. Seasoned regulars like Stoke, Reading and Bristol City are in the play-off zone as they make yet another attempt to climb back to the higher divisions. Cardiff, under Alan Cork, have made steady progress up the table and will be up there at the end of the season. However, there already appears to be a widening gap at the bottom where Northampton, Cambridge, Wrexham and Notts County look set to be involved in a relegation dogfight to the end. Another surprise is in Division Three where Plymouth have a cushion of four points going into the festive period. Behind them are Mansfield, Hull, who narrowly missed out on promotion last time round and perennial underachievers Rochdale. As expected, it is close at the foot of the table where there is two points separating four teams, which include Halifax and seasonal escape artists Carlisle.

Indian spin doctors unravel England CRICKET J.L O’Sullivan “WHAT DO they know of cricket who only cricket know?” So wrote Trinidadian author C.L.R. James in the preface to his history of the game, Beyond a Boundary. So what to make of England’s woeful batting performance in the opening test of the series against India at Mohali? Grave naivety prompted a collapse in both of England’s innings suggesting that the tourists’ knowledge of the game’s demands was somewhat lacking. A gifted Indian side was always going to prove a difficult prospect on their home soil having seen-off the Australians earlier in the year. Indeed, the writing was on the wall before the start of play. England, already bereft of Gough and Caddick, lost the only slow bowler in the party with any test experience, Ashley Giles, to

injury. Even chance conspired against England as captain, Nasser Hussain, lost the toss for a remarkable fourteenth consecutive occasion. England were put into bat on a grassy wicket, later to be complemented by both skippers but Hussain found himself at the crease before he would have preferred when Mark Butcher edged debutante, Tinu Yohannan, to slip for just four runs. The captain and opener Trescothick steadied the ship and at lunch on the first day the score had reached a respectable 129-1. Hussain went on to score a masterly 85, including thirteen fours and a six. But, as on numerous occasions in the past, his departure brought on a collapse of epic proportions as wicket after wicket was surrendered cheaply. Spinner Harbhajan Singh tormented the England line-up taking 5 for 51 as the tourists struggled to amass a first innings total of 238 all out.

England’s novice attack toiled throughout the second day, but for little reward. Deep Dasgupta, the Indian wicket keeper, was pressed into service as an opening bat following the injury to Sanjay Bangar, and responded with a maiden test century. Craig White, the sole survivor of the England attack which blazed a trail across the subcontinent in the spring, eventually bowled him for 100. Ganguly, went onto to make 47 as India reached a total of 469. Butcher and Trescothick salvaged some hope as they batted out the day under lights, putting on 34 runs before the close of play. However, England came unstuck once again. Anil Kumble, later named man-of-thematch, tore through the England ranks, taking 6 for 81 as the tourists collapsed to a total of just 235 all out, leaving India with only five runs to secure victory. For this England side, a bleak few weeks seem likely.

Group of death awaits England WORLD CUP DRAW Matt Greenhall BEFORE LAST weekend’s draw for the 2002 World Cup in Korea and Japan, David Beckham had said that it would be a “dream” for him if England were grouped together with favourites Argentina. From dreams of course, evolve nightmares and as England’s name was thrown into the ‘group of death’ with indeed Argentina, Sweden and Nigeria, a frightening sense of reality would have been felt by the England captain. Whilst over the last few decades England’s footballers have been used to being on the wrong side of fate during a World Cup, never before can they confess to being shattered by misfortune six months before the first ball has even been kicked, until now that is. The devilish Group F that Sven Goran Eriksson has found his men in, is perhaps the most difficult opening round group in World Cup history. Being the first foreign coach of England, it must also surely be some sort of enchanted destiny that Eriksson finds himself leading his adopted home land into battle with the country of his birth, Sweden, in the opening game of Group F. In facing Argentina, the favourites and twice winners, Nigeria – Africa’s most successful country and Sweden, who England haven’t beaten since 1968, the task which faces Eriksson and the English players is enormous.

“It couldn’t be more difficult. Argentina are the best team in South America, Nigeria are the best from Africa, and when was the last time England beat Sweden? …But we have a very good team ourselves, and if we play as well as we can, we can do it”, said Eriksson. The harshness of the draw however, does not end there. If, and it is a big if, England do manage to navigate their way into the second round but only finish as runners-up in Group F, then they are likely to face France and then possibly Brazil. As for the group winners in group F, the path to the semi-finals would be somewhat easier with possible match-ups against Uruguay and Belgium. To qualify for the next stage, England cannot afford a sluggish start to their campaign. Faults in Eriksson’s side will need to be addressed which have been somewhat camouflaged by the hysteria of the 5-1 victory over Germany and Beckham’s last minute free-kick against the Greeks which booked their flights to Japan and Korea. England’s sometimes fragile defence must be of principal concern as is the position of goalkeeper and left wing. However, friendlies against Italy, the Dutch and Paraguay should offer Eriksson the chance to iron out some of the creases in the team. Mick McCarthy and his Irish squad received much greater fortune in last week’s draw, which saw them bracketed with Germany, Saudi Arabia and Cameroon. Although still very tough games, Ireland must be confident of qualifying for the second round and McCarthy was appreciative of the fact that the draw

could have been much worse for the Green Army. “I’m delighted with the draw”, said McCarthy. “It has been good to us and we can all look forward to a summer in Japan.” With the draw now over for the World Cup, many debates still linger about the success and organisation of the prestigious Tournament. The first area of controversy focuses on the qualification rounds, which determined the 32 countries who will take part. Many people inside the world of football question whether geographical qualifying groups are fair and just. For instance Argentina had to play 18 games to qualify, European teams had to play around eight to ten whilst some African and Asian teams only played six. FIFA have also come under heavy criticism for the way teams had been seeded for the draw. FIFA, when deciding who should be seeded for next years World Cup, took into account each country’s performances as far back as 1990. As a result the modern day England side is still suffering from the disaster of Graham ‘Turnip’ Taylor when he failed to steer England to World Cup 94, as Spain have now found themselves as the last seeds ahead of England. Japan and Korea were also seeded on the simple fact that they are co-hosts of the competition rather than on merit. The location and timing of such a tournament has also been questioned. The matches will be shared between Korea and Japan but the months of May and June are

notoriously their wettest whilst the heat and humidity will cause great discomfort for all the players. Earthquakes and violent storms are a feature of the Pacific countries which may detract supporters from going to watch their heroes participate in the biggest competition in the World. The high price of living in Japan and the cost of travel may also see less overall attendance at the 64-match event. Despite all of the arguments and the internal ramblings, the World Cup is the greatest sporting event known to man. Come next May when the tournament kicks off, the atmosphere and vibrancy of many countries world-wide will be something to behold.


Brecon Carreg IMG Sport

gairrhydd, Monday 10 December 2001

IMG Barbarians upset the Uni seconds IMG RUGBY Gavin Harris FOR A mix-match of talented individuals, many of who were meeting for the first time, the IMG barbarians played remarkably well to beat Cardiff University Second team 24 -12. The starting line-up for the Barbarians, led by No.8 Gavin Harris, boasted seven Engineering players, six from Carbs and one from each of Sawsa and Masts. The early play saw the Barbarians launch straight into their stride, applying pressure to the university side to clear their lines, a task that they performed intermittently. The first points came from a ruck, when scrumhalf Alan Jones picked up the ball, dummied, and launched himself over the line.



6 Mar Engin Spares 13 Feb 27 Feb English 20 Feb Hackers 6 Mar Hindu

Big Cheese

Mathletico Nomads

Carbs A



Law A

Momed AFC

W 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

D 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

L 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

F 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

DIVISION TWO A 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

GD Pts 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

Pos 1 Archaeology 2 Chemsoc II 3 Hellenic 4 Irish 5 Pharmacy 6 Psycho Atletico 7 Torpedo Diamond 8 Wok Utd

P 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

W 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

D 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

L 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

F 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

A GD Pts 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

DIVISION THREE Pos 1 Big Cheese 2 Engin Spares 3 English 4 Hackers 5 Hindu 6 Mathletico Madrid 7 Nomads 8 Spartak Sawsa

P 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

W 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

D 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

L 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

F 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

A GD Pts 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0


Fire Engin

Gym Gym

Chemsoc II





Law B


13 Feb 27 Feb 20 Feb 13 Mar 20 Feb 6 Feb 30 Jan 27 Feb 13 Mar 6 Mar

13 Feb 6 Mar 30 Jan 13 Mar 6 Feb 27 Feb 20 Feb 13 Feb 30 Jan 20 Feb 13 Feb 6 Feb 6 Mar 27 Feb 13 Mar SECOND

Engin Spares


30 Jan 13 Mar 27 Feb 13 Feb 20 Feb 6 Feb 27 Feb 20 Feb 6 Mar 13 Mar 30 Jan 13 Mar 6 Mar 13 Feb 6 Feb 6 Mar 27 Feb 30 Jan 20 Feb 6 Feb THIRD

30 Jan 13 Feb 6 Feb

P 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

IMG vs BUSA: A friendly?




6 Feb 30 Jan 13 Feb

Pos 1 Carbs B 2 Economics 3 Fire Engin 4 Gym Gym 5 History 6 Law B 7 Plan City 8 R.Park Rangers

GD Pts 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

20 Feb 13 Mar 6 Feb 30 Jan 13 Feb 30 Jan 27 Feb 6 Mar 20 Feb 27 Feb 6 Feb 13 Mar 13 Feb 30 Jan 6 Mar THE IMG

6 Mar 6 Feb 13 Feb 27 Feb 6 Feb 6 Mar 30 Jan 13 Feb 13 Mar 30 Jan 20 Feb

27 Feb 20 Feb 13 Mar 6 Mar 6 Mar 27 Feb 20 Feb 13 Mar 30 Jan 6 Feb

A 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0



F 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0


Archaeology Chemsoc II Hellenic Irish Pharmacy Psycho Ath. Torpedo DL

L 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

Pyscho Ath.


D 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0



30 Jan 6 Mar 13 Feb 20 Feb 6 Feb 13 Mar 27 Feb

6 Mar 13 Mar 13 Feb 27 Feb 20 Feb 6 Feb


Carbs B Economics Fire Engin Gym Gym History Law B Plan City

Wok Utd


Spartak Sawsa



27 Feb 6 Feb 6 Mar 20 Feb 13 Feb 13 Mar 30 Jan

W 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

Plan City

Accountancy Carbs A Chemsoc Jomec Law A Momed AFC Plan’kos

Roath Park Rangers


Real Economics


P 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

Torpedo DL

Pos 1 Accountancy 2 Carbs A 3 Chemsoc 4 Jomec 5 Law A 6 Momed AFC 7 Planathinaikos 8 Real Economics

As the IMG select grew in confidence they began to show some remarkable skill, and assisted by a following wind, were able to pin their opponents into the opposite twenty-two. Colin Whitbread took full advantage of this pressure utilising a hand-off to score near the posts, before fly-half replacement Derek Drummond easily converted. The friendly atmosphere was tarnished soon after, as university tight head and IMG loose head props exchanged several blows, but their action’s were not deemed worthy of any card’s. The last try of the match came from blind side Paul Wright who received a clever popup to put down under the posts. A superb performance in a worthwhile match which sheds an interesting light on the differing qualities of BUSA and IMG sides, although it is worth remembering that the Barbarians showed a much greater degree of motivation.

After the restart the university side came back at the Barbarians with the kind of vigour that you would expect from a side that represent the university every week. This period of pressure bore fruit and Cardiff Second’s scored a converted try to bring the scores 7 - 5. This time it was the Barbarians turn to step up a gear, as again they piled on the pressure. Good forward play and an exciting dummy from Owen Lambert allowed him to score under the posts offering an easy conversion duly taken. The second half saw the Barbarians kicking to their opposite numbers, and they pressured the university into uncharacteristic errors. A 20 metre drive from a lineout saw the powerful Barbarians force over for another unconverted try to leave the scores level at 12 a piece.


REAL ECONOMICS: Surprise Outfit

NETBALL Laura Welsh and Natalie Lewis PHIST FACED the Welsh team Gym Gym this week is a fast paced game. The excellent defence of Kim and Llinos made it a tough game for Gym Gym as they lacked opportunity to score. Phist’s centre Emily Runcorn played well and there was fluent passing between the Phisters. Gym Gym came back and scored four goals but it was not enough to secure victory and Phist went on to win the game 10-4. Fresh from their stunning victory over Stars the previous week, English were looking for their fourth victory of the season against SAWSA. Despite lacking Lucy and Laura, English performed well especially with the return of Captain Becky. SAWSA were eager to get into the game and showed an improvement in form since the beginning of the season. However, English’s impressive passing and some excellent shooting from Katie and Sarah led


to a victory for English 9-3. The extreme cold and windy conditions did not help matters as Chemy faced up to the mighty Law A. Without their usual shooters Chemy were not feeling confident of a win, but the team put up quite a fight against Law A. In the frst half strong defence from Chemy meant that Law A lacked opportunities to score. The second half saw more goals for the Law side who went on to win the match 16 -0. Law played superbly but Chemy put up a brave fight. Brecon Carreg IMG Netball caters for all levels – whether you have played netball at County level or if you have not played since you were eleven years old. Some teams take it seriously but most teams see Brecon Carreg Netball as the chance to run around a court for half an hour a week and just have a laugh. Teams also have lots of their own socials and tend to pair up with the Brecon Carreg IMG football teams as well. If you would like to play Brecon Carreg IMG NETBALL then please contact – Laura Welsh, and I can match you to a team depending on

your level. Other results: Psycho B 10 – 0 Stars ( Stars forfeited the game ) Pharmacy 20 – 12 Comsoc UWC A 10 – 7 Economics Psycho A 10 – 9 UWC B Carbs A 24 – 1 Socsi Carbs B 9 – 5 Planning

Sport ● 25

gairrhydd, Monday 10 December 2001

Superb Cardiff silence critics BLUEBIRDS


3 1


Nabil Hassan reports from Ninian Park

Nabil Hassan reports from Ninian Park GRAHAM KAVANAGH answered his critics with a superb two-goal display against Oldham to put Cardiff back into play-off contention. The Irishman who has recently been the subject of some unfair press showed exactly why the Cardiff management invested so much money in bringing him to Ninian Park. Kav scored two second half goals that underlined his true class. The first was a brilliant 25 yard volley that proved to be the winner, and the second was a cool finish when he found himself one on one with the Oldham keeper. However, it was not his two goals that earned him special praise, but his workman like and dedicated performance that lifted the entire City team. Peter Thorne also returned to City the line up, and it was the ex-Stoke striker who had a hand in City’s first goal of the game which lit up an otherwise unforgettable first half. The superb Kavanagh sent in a wicked cross that Thorne unselfishly headed

straight back across goal to give Robert Earnshaw a free header at the far post and ultimately a well deserved half-time lead. The second half was full of action and saw many chances for both sides. Earnshaw in particular looked dangerous and it was clear to see that his pace was a worry to the Oldham defence. In fact it was Earnshaw who created Cardiff’s second goal. The pint-sized striker superbly found Kavanagh with a neat headed flick-on and the Irishman drilled an unstoppable left footed volley into the top corner of the net. Oldham responded well and got back into the game with a John Eyre tap in with 15 minutes of the game remaining. Then came a moment of controversy. With seconds left Kavanagh chased down an Oldham clearance on the half-way line and appeared to block it with his hands. However, none of the officials noticed and Kav raced away to both score and as a result secure three vital points for the Bluebirds.

3 1

CARDIFF CITY went fifth with an impressive action-packed victory against high-flying Brentford. Goals from Peter Thorne, Robert Earnshaw and Daniel Gabbidon were enough to give City all three points, but it could have been so many more. Robert Earnshaw in particular was guilty of spurning a hatful of chances, including a missed penalty, but he could be forgiven after scoring a delightful goal for City that eventually proved to be the winner. The little Zambian Prince was fed a pass from the excellent Graham Kavanagh and with his back to goal there seemed nowhere to go. But with a neat turn he beat three men and fired a right foot shot that ricocheted off the cross bar and into the back of the net. Earlier Peter Thorne had fired City ahead with a neat half volley. However, the unlucky striker hurt himself several minutes later and, having only just returned from injury, he now finds himself sidelined for up to twelve weeks. Jason Bowen in particular shone for City in the first half and the creative midfielder was unfortunate not to find himself on the score sheet after making several decent chances for himself. City went into half -time with a well deserved two-goal lead against a team whose league position seem to flatter them somewhat. But Brentford came out for the second half a different team and went close with

a couple of chances that City were lucky to escape. And as all too often this season, the Bluebirds conceded their obligatory goal. Brentford captain Paul Evans fired through a crowd of players to get the visitors back into the game. However, City responded well with a Daniel Gabbidon headed goal from a fine Graham Kavanagh corner to give the Bluebirds a three-one lead. Robert Earnshaw then had two chances to increase City’s lead. The first was a delicate chip that beat the Brentford keeper but failed to find the target and the second was a missed penalty that was awarded after he was tripped in the area. Oldham defender Paul Gibbs was sent-off as a result of the foul, but Earnie fired the spot-kick against the bar much to the disappointment of the 10,000 crowd. Fortune-West had a late opportunity to get on the score-sheet but his effort was hacked of the line and the game ended three-one to the Bluebirds. Peter Thorne, who despite scoring, was still a broken man after sustaining another injury. He said “I’m gutted to have got another injury, I really wanted to stay on as I could see there was goals to be had, but my ankle was just not up to it.” Alan Cork was also upset at the loss of Thorne but was as positive as ever.

He said, “It was disappointing that we lost Peter Thorne, but Leo Fortune-West took over and did a good job. He’s a real asset. We had good chances and could have been four or five ahead at half-time. We weren’t as fluent in the second half, but we won well and that was the main aim.” Cardiff now approach the festive period with high hopes of automatic promotion, and they will be well tested as they face promotion rivals, Reading, Bristol City and Stoke. Manager Alan Cork believes that it is imperative for City to take points from these key games. He said: “We must look to get something out of them and keep playing positively.” Brentford manager Steve Coppell, was generous in his praise of Cardiff. He commented: “It’s the big clubs with the big resources who will get out of this division – and Cardiff are among them with Reading, Stoke and Bristol City.” With a man like Sam Hammam holding the purse strings, Cardiff are lucky. So entering the most crucial part of the season, City will have to do it without record signing Peter Thorne. Leo Fortune West and Gavin Gordon seem the obvious candidates to take over the attacking duties in Thorne’s absence, alongside Earnshaw or Paul Brayson. However, if needed, there seems to be little doubt that Hammam could splash the cash once more to aid a promotion push.

Kavanagh takes the plaudits PLAYER PROFILE Chris Wathan IT IS no surprise that City’s recent run of form coincides with Graham Kavanagh’s increasingly influential performances in a Cardiff shirt. The first million pound man in Sam Hammam’s Welsh revolution has hit a purple patch and with it the Bluebirds have soared into the play-off frame.

EARNSHAW: ‘Zambian Prince’

The signing of ‘Kav’ this June was a loud message to all rivals that Cardiff had come to the second division meaning business and, coupled with the signing of defensive stalwart Spencer Prior just days earlier, Bluebird fans waited in anticipation for the season’s start. And, while it took a while for the Cardiff promotion machine to really get going, manager Alan Cork is now reaping the benefits of having such a class act at his disposal. Kavanagh, grey haired before his time, had many clubs chasing his signature. First division outfits Gillingham, Wolves and West Brom all recognised the three times capped Irishman’s abilities, but it was

Cardiff who secured the Dubliner’s services. Kavanagh said: “I want to play in the first division and the Premiership. Cardiff City offer me the best chance of doing both.” It would have seemed that Kavanagh has sacrificed his immediate future with Eire for success with Cardiff. His appearance in the Irish squad to face Portugal away during the World Cup qualifiers was his last but Kav’s natural skill and tireless engine will mean he can’t be far from Mick McCarthy’s thoughts. But even if Kav fails to board the plane to Japan/Korea, Ireland’s loss is Cardiff’s gain.

After City demolished Brentford, we rate the Cardiff players performances: Neil Alexander 7: Solid throughout, Alexander impresses with his kicking and confidence. Daniel Gabbidon 8: His pace is a real asset on the right, deserved his well headed goal. Dean Gordon 7: Growing in stature since loan move from Boro. Has Premiership pedigree. Scott Young 8: Has formed good partnership with Prior. Superb pass set up Thorne goal. Spencer Prior 8: A cool, calm influence who inspires confidence. Prior is the City ‘rock’. Graham Kavanagh 8: Attacks with vigour and defends well. Kav is the key man in the side. Mark Bonner 7: Looking to keep out Hamilton, Bonner anchors the midfield without fuss. Willie Boland 8: Finally getting back to best. Boland has a great engine and a footballing brain. Jason Bowen 9: A scintillating performance, his pace and superb skill bamboozled Brentford. Robert Earnshaw 8: Scored a magnificent goal and missed a penalty. Never stops smiling. Peter Thorne 8: Will be sorely missed after injury. Deserved goal and deserves better fortune. Sub for Thorne (26) Leo Fortune West 7: Ran his heart out, Leo’s height is always a threat. Sub for Earnshaw (84) Leyton Maxwell 6: Settling in well.

Sport Gair Rhydd

IMG: The groups for next term and the fixture dates PLUS: Bluebirds and GR Sport quiz! Free Word 708

Monday 10 December 2001

Toil pays dividends KORFBALL Neil Blain CARDIFF KORFBALL showed their undoubted class at last weekend’s Manchester tournament, but were eventually disappointed to come third, when a little more fortune could have led them to the title itself. Their campaign laid it’s foundations on stoic defence and insightful attacking play, and the gameplan seemed to be paying off as Cardiff avoided conceding in their first three matches. A win against Birmingham, a draw against Manchester's second team and a convincing victory against Lancaster – with decisive goals from Jen Cannock and Josh Cockburn – ensured that UWC would reach the tournament semi-final. A remarkable effort considering Cardiff were missing several key players and an immense but academic 6-2 victory over Manchester Metropolitan, exemplified their class. Unfortunately, despite high hopes, the team were defeated in the semi-final by a wellorganised Manchester first team. They managed to salvage some pride with an exciting 6- 2 domination of Manchester's second team which ensured a deserved third place position, but this developing side will surely want to step up a gear in future tournaments.

KORFBALL: UWC create chances but fail to take them in the latter stages

Seventh heaven for amazing Polo boys WATERPOLO Jim Rosenthal LAST SATURDAY the men's waterpolo team travelled to Swansea looking to triumph in the Welsh Universities competition for a record breaking seventh year in a row. The tournament also doubled as the first round of the BUSA competition and following their third consecutive BUSA title last April, Cardiff were keen to show that once again they are the team to beat. However, the campaign got off to the worst start imaginable in the game against UWIC, when a defensive mix up led to the sports institute taking a shock lead. The rest of the first quarter saw Cardiff miss numerous chances to equalise, before finally gaining control and taking a 3-1 lead into the second quarter. From then on it was one way traffic, as UWIC were unable to contain wave after wave of incisive attacking. New captain Mark Taylor led the way with four goals as Cardiff eventually ran out 13-1 winners. Dave Taylor notched a hatrick in the process, whilst David Brown managed to score on his BUSA debut. In the next match against Aberystwyth UWC took control from the start and their experienced players used the game against the competition’s weakest side to show off some unorthodox skills; two goals came from headers and Dave

Taylor scored twice with his feet. The game also demonstrated the strength in depth of the UWC squad, with every outfield player scoring at least once and squad players such as Crwys Harris and Rich Lawford getting on the score sheet in a convincing 14-1 victory, with both Darren Eastmond and Joff Colwyn-Bryant striking twice. Although Cardiff’s qualification into the next round was already assured, UWC were not about to ease up as they entered their final game versus Swansea, especially as the Welsh Universities title was still up for grabs. Cardiff produced another

awesome performance to outclass their local rivals and second seeds. A 16-1 score-line was a fair reflection on proceedings but Swansea did pose the UWC defence more problems than the other two teams, with the keeper Tim Marshall making some stunning saves. The game even included some fine goals from BUSA veterans Ben Wells and John Shoebridge. The BUSA champions will clearly come up against more difficult opponents in the next round, but they will be confident following this dominant display. The team always looked likely to score goals and with

such a tight defence they will once again prove very difficult to beat. Skipper Mark Taylor, who was the tournament's top scorer with eight goals, was pleased. "Obviously it won't always be this easy," he commented "but it was a good performance. We've got a lot of work to do but we are still the team to beat." The quarterfinals take place in eight weeks time and Cardiff will be disappointed if they fail to win again. How can you improve on perfection? Perhaps this is the only question that remains unanswered by this remarkable university team.

WATERPOLO: Another trophy for the burgeoning cabinet


gair rhydd - Issue 708  

gair rhydd - Issue 708

Read more
Read more
Similar to
Popular now
Just for you