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AND THEN, THERE WAS ONE


I

Welcome to Replica. Replica Magazine Global Tat Productions www.replicamag.co.uk Chief Custodian Thomas Foxley thebrains@replicamag.co.uk Editor Rosie Allen-Jones editor@replicamag.co.uk Music Editor Charlie Gilmour musiceditor@replicamag.co.uk Uncle Wetlegs Himself agony@replicamag.co.uk This magazine is a compilation of articles, artwork, photos and other bits and pieces sent in by the public. To contribute: contributions@replicamag.co.uk

Editor’s Note We have made it, the first issue is here!! Thank you so much to all the people that have subscribed and contributed. We have had some brilliant articles and artwork sent in (as you will see). We are really pleased with the interest the magazine has generated so far and are very excited to see how far we can take it.

Let’s take over the world. Unfortunately we haven’t been able to print hard copies of this edition due to bad timing, exams and stuff which is why it has gone online. Do not fear, we will be in print soon.

Until then, keep writing, keep drawing... DO IT.

RAJ

Word limit 800 words.

We are great, you are great: let’s make babies. Cover: Anna Chilton www.annachilton.co.uk Artwork (left) by Tom Hornbrook


I

Welcome to Replica. Replica Magazine Global Tat Productions www.replicamag.co.uk Chief Custodian Thomas Foxley thebrains@replicamag.co.uk Editor Rosie Allen-Jones editor@replicamag.co.uk Music Editor Charlie Gilmour musiceditor@replicamag.co.uk Uncle Wetlegs Himself agony@replicamag.co.uk This magazine is a compilation of articles, artwork, photos and other bits and pieces sent in by the public. To contribute: contributions@replicamag.co.uk

Editor’s Note We have made it, the first issue is here!! Thank you so much to all the people that have subscribed and contributed. We have had some brilliant articles and artwork sent in (as you will see). We are really pleased with the interest the magazine has generated so far and are very excited to see how far we can take it.

Let’s take over the world. Unfortunately we haven’t been able to print hard copies of this edition due to bad timing, exams and stuff which is why it has gone online. Do not fear, we will be in print soon.

Until then, keep writing, keep drawing... DO IT.

RAJ

Word limit 800 words.

We are great, you are great: let’s make babies. Cover: Anna Chilton www.annachilton.co.uk Artwork (left) by Tom Hornbrook


II

III

THEME FOR NEXT ISSUE

AQUATIC/ERATIC

Artwork and articles to match. Also, someone must be a good cartoonist? We want a comic strip please. Photo: Emma Dalzell www.emma-dalzell.co.uk

Table of Contents Stand Up Kenya by Amal Mohammed Rage at the Kenyan elections fiasco

V

Living Alongside Alessi by Amy Tipper Comparing yourself to a designer kitchen is fun

IV

21st July by RAJ Moron jumps off 25 meter cliff and breaks her back

VIII

Welcome to Hell by TGF Largely nonsense

XVI

India by Tom O’Neil Tom Tom Tom and Tom drive the length of India in a tuk-tuk

XV

Tramps, ID Cards and I by Sam Muston Sam befriends a tramp

XX

Norman Baker by Slikie Carlo Conspiracy theory at its finest

XXII

Glastonbury Review by Thorny Strawtree Girl with weird name tells us why you should go to Glastonbury

XXVI

Cocaine Breastmilk Scandal by Rafeal LeFevre Boy with even weirder name rants about modern music

XXVII

Replica Recommends by Charlie G Music Editor Charlie Gilmour tells us what’s what

XXVIII

Laura Marling Gig Review by Charlie G

XXX

Uncle Wetlegs by Uncle Wetlegs The man himself does his thing

XXXII

A Remembrance Sunday I’d Rather Forget by Dan Pennington

XXXIIV

V


II

III

THEME FOR NEXT ISSUE

AQUATIC/ERATIC

Artwork and articles to match. Also, someone must be a good cartoonist? We want a comic strip please. Photo: Emma Dalzell www.emma-dalzell.co.uk

Table of Contents Stand Up Kenya by Amal Mohammed Rage at the Kenyan elections fiasco

V

Living Alongside Alessi by Amy Tipper Comparing yourself to a designer kitchen is fun

IV

21st July by RAJ Moron jumps off 25 meter cliff and breaks her back

VIII

Welcome to Hell by TGF Largely nonsense

XVI

India by Tom O’Neil Tom Tom Tom and Tom drive the length of India in a tuk-tuk

XV

Tramps, ID Cards and I by Sam Muston Sam befriends a tramp

XX

Norman Baker by Slikie Carlo Conspiracy theory at its finest

XXII

Glastonbury Review by Thorny Strawtree Girl with weird name tells us why you should go to Glastonbury

XXVI

Cocaine Breastmilk Scandal by Rafeal LeFevre Boy with even weirder name rants about modern music

XXVII

Replica Recommends by Charlie G Music Editor Charlie Gilmour tells us what’s what

XXVIII

Laura Marling Gig Review by Charlie G

XXX

Uncle Wetlegs by Uncle Wetlegs The man himself does his thing

XXXII

A Remembrance Sunday I’d Rather Forget by Dan Pennington

XXXIIV

V


IV

V Letter To The President ROBBERY IN BROAD DAYLIGHT: Kenyan Elections Dec:2007 Amal Mohammed A sham, the greatest injustice in the history of a land with mountains of riches spurting from it. The image of the happy, smiling people under the sun tarnished by nothing short of filthy selfish greed. Doesn't he realise that the nation is bigger that you, me, or anyone else? The nation is a collective, breathing community and to disregard the poorthe homeless who longed for a chance to voice their rights, their will.

What is it doing? Does it nag at you, tugging at your cold heart? Or does it whisper in those ears still ringing with the screams of the oppressed just outside of your magnificent gates? Or do you unconsciously mutter under your breath, "What have I done?" "What is my legacy?" Because never again will you be able to stand in front of the crowds, in front of your people and speak to their hearts, to their souls.

Boiling rage in the hearts of the millions who stood out in the scorching heat or the pelting rain to cast their vote only to be brushed aside because you wanted to secure what lied in their pockets.

I cry THIEF! For you have stolen our freedom, you have stolen our pride, and most of all you have stolen the peace!!!!!! Red is our colour and you better be ready. Get ready for what happens when you try to suppress the majority. You have awoken a lion in each and every Kenyan and you will face our fury.

If you think bullets from guns will rule the people, you have another thing coming. We have waited patiently, peacefully, not budging even when your corruption and theft was obvious in the past. But this is another era. You have stirred the red in us today and we stand in defence of our freedom, our rights as human being and in protection of our democracy and pride!

STAND UP KENYA!

Red is the colour of our country now.

A betrayal of unspeakable consequences. Years behind the scenes and another five on our pedestal, you only seemed to grab and drain us of our wealth. Now tucked away in your presidential palace, walking down the shiny just polished white tiles.

Thick red blood from the brave that walk out of their homes to be heard. Red flames engulfing our cities burning the hard work of your citizens. Red is the colour of our anger at this utter betrayal that we have been subjected to.

What does your conscience tell you?

CONGRATULATIONS AMAL, YOU ARE THIS ISSUE’S PRIZE WINNER! YOU HAVE WON YOURSELF A PAIR OF HAMSTERS, SUPPLIED BY OUR GOOD FRIENDS AT PETER’S PETS. PLEASE GET IN CONTACT. IF NOT I’M EATING YOUR PRIZE. YOU HAVE 7 DAYS. Picture: Violence in Nairobi. Courtesy of Wikipedia.


IV

V Letter To The President ROBBERY IN BROAD DAYLIGHT: Kenyan Elections Dec:2007 Amal Mohammed A sham, the greatest injustice in the history of a land with mountains of riches spurting from it. The image of the happy, smiling people under the sun tarnished by nothing short of filthy selfish greed. Doesn't he realise that the nation is bigger that you, me, or anyone else? The nation is a collective, breathing community and to disregard the poorthe homeless who longed for a chance to voice their rights, their will.

What is it doing? Does it nag at you, tugging at your cold heart? Or does it whisper in those ears still ringing with the screams of the oppressed just outside of your magnificent gates? Or do you unconsciously mutter under your breath, "What have I done?" "What is my legacy?" Because never again will you be able to stand in front of the crowds, in front of your people and speak to their hearts, to their souls.

Boiling rage in the hearts of the millions who stood out in the scorching heat or the pelting rain to cast their vote only to be brushed aside because you wanted to secure what lied in their pockets.

I cry THIEF! For you have stolen our freedom, you have stolen our pride, and most of all you have stolen the peace!!!!!! Red is our colour and you better be ready. Get ready for what happens when you try to suppress the majority. You have awoken a lion in each and every Kenyan and you will face our fury.

If you think bullets from guns will rule the people, you have another thing coming. We have waited patiently, peacefully, not budging even when your corruption and theft was obvious in the past. But this is another era. You have stirred the red in us today and we stand in defence of our freedom, our rights as human being and in protection of our democracy and pride!

STAND UP KENYA!

Red is the colour of our country now.

A betrayal of unspeakable consequences. Years behind the scenes and another five on our pedestal, you only seemed to grab and drain us of our wealth. Now tucked away in your presidential palace, walking down the shiny just polished white tiles.

Thick red blood from the brave that walk out of their homes to be heard. Red flames engulfing our cities burning the hard work of your citizens. Red is the colour of our anger at this utter betrayal that we have been subjected to.

What does your conscience tell you?

CONGRATULATIONS AMAL, YOU ARE THIS ISSUE’S PRIZE WINNER! YOU HAVE WON YOURSELF A PAIR OF HAMSTERS, SUPPLIED BY OUR GOOD FRIENDS AT PETER’S PETS. PLEASE GET IN CONTACT. IF NOT I’M EATING YOUR PRIZE. YOU HAVE 7 DAYS. Picture: Violence in Nairobi. Courtesy of Wikipedia.


VI

VII

DOMESTIC

Living Alongside Alessi Amy Tipper Italian designer Alberto Alessi described his latest kitchen project, LaCucinaAlessi, as “a fully fledged temple of domestic creativity”. It is due to be unveiled to a gasping audience of photographers and journalists during this years Milan Design Week. Meanwhile I will be unveiling myself and my luggage to a small house in Fulham, London belonging to my boyfriend- to which I am finally moving in. The kitchen has the advantage of already being considered highly by its creator and the collaboration of designers that

I am without this advantage. made its existence possible.

Instead, I’m a creature that leaves dirty laundry trailing in the corridor, waits for as long as possible before the sheets are changed, and when it comes to presentation, is two-faced- I clean for my audience, but never for myself. The “domestic creativity” gene is somewhat missing. If I have to be horribly honest, I worry most about going to the toilet in a shared living space. Marge Piercy’s feminist Barbie Doll poem, where a little girl is “presented dolls that did pee-pee and had miniature GE stoves and irons” has got it vastly wrong. My Barbie

was without any bodily functions whatsoever, and

certainly didn’t have a stove, just a wardrobe. Barbie is the tool that has created a world full of constipated, well-dressed women and I am one of them. I yearn to be Barbie, and I yearn to be the Alessi kitchen. They are constant in their perfection, the glass surfaces of the kitchen tops are stainless and even if I cut off Barbie’s hair her legs are still disproportionately long. Perfection is boring? Yes, of course – but when beginning with perfection there is far more scope to become interesting. I shall be unveiled to the house in Fulham, not as a creature baptised in a light of newness, but as a battered thing – slightly neurotic, unvarnished and more than a little wary. Where will my vague semblance of perfection go? It is fragile at best, relying on dim lighting, preparation work that is done secretly in the deep recess of a private bedroom, and a confidence that is lubricated with alcohol. And at the back of my mind, the greatest fear of all: he tells me he loves me, but how can he if he’s never heard me break wind? Background image from Wikipedia. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:Alessi_Flagship_Store.jpg Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.2 or any later version published by the Free Software Foundation; with no Invariant Sections, no Front-Cover Texts, and no Back-Cover Texts.

Photo (right) by Emma Dalzell www.emmadalzell.co.uk

COMPETITION Win A BOTTLE OF JD and a signed CD of The Wombats featuring Peter Hook. The JD Set rocked up to Newcastle back in January, when Jack Daniel’s presented The Wombats on a line up of breakthrough acts at The Cluny. JD Set special guest Peter Hook took to the stage to play live with The Wombats on their single ‘Backfire At The Disco’! For those there, it was a spine-tingling musical moment. The band loved it so much they’re releasing it as a limited edition B side! To win a copy signed by The Wombats, and a bottle of JD to share with your friends, just tell us where Jack Daniel’s is made. Please send your emails to: competition@replicamag.co.uk Please include your name and address. All entries must be completed by the 10 th June.

Go to the link below to watch a very poor quality video of the event: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NeFmep4bVHY

Since 2002, Jack Daniel’s has been bringing together an impressive line up of breakthrough talent in gigs across the UK to celebrate their well-respected musical heritage. You can check out the JD Set TV show on Channel 4 every Friday night, or log onto www.thejdset.co.uk for info on forthcoming gigs and exclusive footage. Know when to unplug. Please drink Jack Daniel’s responsibly. Terms & Conditions 1. The Promotion is open to UK residents aged 18 or over only excluding employees of the Promoter, title, their families, agents and anyone else connected with the promotion, Only one entry per person. 3. Entries to be received no later than 10th June 5. The Promoter accepts no responsibility for any entries which are delayed or not delivered. 6. The prize is 1 signed copy of ‘Backfire At The Disco’ by The Wombats and a bottle of JD. 7. The Promoter reserves the right to select an alternative winner, should the original winner and guest not validate their identity or age, or if they are uncontactable within 2 days of prize notification. 8. The prize draw will be supervised by an independent person and will take place on June 12th.

WINNERS TO BE ANNOUNCED IN THE NEXT ISSUE


VI

VII

DOMESTIC

Living Alongside Alessi Amy Tipper Italian designer Alberto Alessi described his latest kitchen project, LaCucinaAlessi, as “a fully fledged temple of domestic creativity”. It is due to be unveiled to a gasping audience of photographers and journalists during this years Milan Design Week. Meanwhile I will be unveiling myself and my luggage to a small house in Fulham, London belonging to my boyfriend- to which I am finally moving in. The kitchen has the advantage of already being considered highly by its creator and the collaboration of designers that

I am without this advantage. made its existence possible.

Instead, I’m a creature that leaves dirty laundry trailing in the corridor, waits for as long as possible before the sheets are changed, and when it comes to presentation, is two-faced- I clean for my audience, but never for myself. The “domestic creativity” gene is somewhat missing. If I have to be horribly honest, I worry most about going to the toilet in a shared living space. Marge Piercy’s feminist Barbie Doll poem, where a little girl is “presented dolls that did pee-pee and had miniature GE stoves and irons” has got it vastly wrong. My Barbie

was without any bodily functions whatsoever, and

certainly didn’t have a stove, just a wardrobe. Barbie is the tool that has created a world full of constipated, well-dressed women and I am one of them. I yearn to be Barbie, and I yearn to be the Alessi kitchen. They are constant in their perfection, the glass surfaces of the kitchen tops are stainless and even if I cut off Barbie’s hair her legs are still disproportionately long. Perfection is boring? Yes, of course – but when beginning with perfection there is far more scope to become interesting. I shall be unveiled to the house in Fulham, not as a creature baptised in a light of newness, but as a battered thing – slightly neurotic, unvarnished and more than a little wary. Where will my vague semblance of perfection go? It is fragile at best, relying on dim lighting, preparation work that is done secretly in the deep recess of a private bedroom, and a confidence that is lubricated with alcohol. And at the back of my mind, the greatest fear of all: he tells me he loves me, but how can he if he’s never heard me break wind? Background image from Wikipedia. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:Alessi_Flagship_Store.jpg Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.2 or any later version published by the Free Software Foundation; with no Invariant Sections, no Front-Cover Texts, and no Back-Cover Texts.

Photo (right) by Emma Dalzell www.emmadalzell.co.uk

COMPETITION Win A BOTTLE OF JD and a signed CD of The Wombats featuring Peter Hook. The JD Set rocked up to Newcastle back in January, when Jack Daniel’s presented The Wombats on a line up of breakthrough acts at The Cluny. JD Set special guest Peter Hook took to the stage to play live with The Wombats on their single ‘Backfire At The Disco’! For those there, it was a spine-tingling musical moment. The band loved it so much they’re releasing it as a limited edition B side! To win a copy signed by The Wombats, and a bottle of JD to share with your friends, just tell us where Jack Daniel’s is made. Please send your emails to: competition@replicamag.co.uk Please include your name and address. All entries must be completed by the 10 th June.

Go to the link below to watch a very poor quality video of the event: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NeFmep4bVHY

Since 2002, Jack Daniel’s has been bringing together an impressive line up of breakthrough talent in gigs across the UK to celebrate their well-respected musical heritage. You can check out the JD Set TV show on Channel 4 every Friday night, or log onto www.thejdset.co.uk for info on forthcoming gigs and exclusive footage. Know when to unplug. Please drink Jack Daniel’s responsibly. Terms & Conditions 1. The Promotion is open to UK residents aged 18 or over only excluding employees of the Promoter, title, their families, agents and anyone else connected with the promotion, Only one entry per person. 3. Entries to be received no later than 10th June 5. The Promoter accepts no responsibility for any entries which are delayed or not delivered. 6. The prize is 1 signed copy of ‘Backfire At The Disco’ by The Wombats and a bottle of JD. 7. The Promoter reserves the right to select an alternative winner, should the original winner and guest not validate their identity or age, or if they are uncontactable within 2 days of prize notification. 8. The prize draw will be supervised by an independent person and will take place on June 12th.

WINNERS TO BE ANNOUNCED IN THE NEXT ISSUE


VIII

TRAVEL

IX

21st July 2007 RAJ Its the 21st of July 2007 and I find myself sitting on a rock, hugging my knees, shaking from head to toe taking occasional peeks down to the calm ocean 25 meters below. Adrenaline is pumping around my body so hard that my head is beginning to spin. Above me a baiting gaggle of French youths encourage me to offer myself up to the

What’s the worse that could happen? sea.

It had taken the most prodigious journey to get me here. Me, my boyfriend and two of our friends had driven to Exit festival in Serbia in the almighty Suzi, an old Saab convertible that really had defied all the odds in getting us the 1200 miles across Europe. The journey there had indeed been touch and go; we over heated twice just driving from Reading to London two days before we were to get on the Euro Tunnel. On the last leg of the trip coming into to Serbia we frequently found ourselves gliding down the Autobahn screaming "turn the fucking key!". Suzi's power would often completely cut out as cars sped past us at over 100 miles an hour. In the end, however, Suzi delivered us to the festival safe and sound. We tucked her away and joyously went off to destroy every ounce of sensibility we once had in a blurry five days of 40

degree sunlight, crap drugs and insanely good music. When the music stopped so did all our wills to live. Smelly, tired and grumpy we took our comedowns and checked into a nice four star hotel, courtesy of the RAC and thanks to Suzi, not yet ready to start again. Eventually Suzi got fixed up and we made it to Belgrade. My boyfriend, Tom and I left our militant mates, who wanted to go on to another festival and embarked on a (mostly) relaxing drive through Bosnia to Croatia. Bosnia was stunning and in the two days we spent driving roof down bikini, trunks and big sunglasses on I felt we were in heaven. I knew not of the hell that lay ahead of us. Dubrovnik, Croatia. A friend had told us of a cafe on the rocks on the outside of the wall where tourists and locals go to have fun and frolics jumping into the

Off we went for a bit of thrill seeking. On arrival we were sea.

fairly disappointed, the rocks didn’t look that high and we definitely weren’t scared enough. After throwing ourselves off a few of the lower rocks we watched in amazement as a young boy scaled up the massive boulders to a point we hadn’t even considered. It had to have been about 25 to 30 meters.

Photo left: taken from on top of a rock 10 meters above sea level.


VIII

TRAVEL

IX

21st July 2007 RAJ Its the 21st of July 2007 and I find myself sitting on a rock, hugging my knees, shaking from head to toe taking occasional peeks down to the calm ocean 25 meters below. Adrenaline is pumping around my body so hard that my head is beginning to spin. Above me a baiting gaggle of French youths encourage me to offer myself up to the

What’s the worse that could happen? sea.

It had taken the most prodigious journey to get me here. Me, my boyfriend and two of our friends had driven to Exit festival in Serbia in the almighty Suzi, an old Saab convertible that really had defied all the odds in getting us the 1200 miles across Europe. The journey there had indeed been touch and go; we over heated twice just driving from Reading to London two days before we were to get on the Euro Tunnel. On the last leg of the trip coming into to Serbia we frequently found ourselves gliding down the Autobahn screaming "turn the fucking key!". Suzi's power would often completely cut out as cars sped past us at over 100 miles an hour. In the end, however, Suzi delivered us to the festival safe and sound. We tucked her away and joyously went off to destroy every ounce of sensibility we once had in a blurry five days of 40

degree sunlight, crap drugs and insanely good music. When the music stopped so did all our wills to live. Smelly, tired and grumpy we took our comedowns and checked into a nice four star hotel, courtesy of the RAC and thanks to Suzi, not yet ready to start again. Eventually Suzi got fixed up and we made it to Belgrade. My boyfriend, Tom and I left our militant mates, who wanted to go on to another festival and embarked on a (mostly) relaxing drive through Bosnia to Croatia. Bosnia was stunning and in the two days we spent driving roof down bikini, trunks and big sunglasses on I felt we were in heaven. I knew not of the hell that lay ahead of us. Dubrovnik, Croatia. A friend had told us of a cafe on the rocks on the outside of the wall where tourists and locals go to have fun and frolics jumping into the

Off we went for a bit of thrill seeking. On arrival we were sea.

fairly disappointed, the rocks didn’t look that high and we definitely weren’t scared enough. After throwing ourselves off a few of the lower rocks we watched in amazement as a young boy scaled up the massive boulders to a point we hadn’t even considered. It had to have been about 25 to 30 meters.

Photo left: taken from on top of a rock 10 meters above sea level.


X

XI The boy, a local, climbed out of the sea and proclaimed "I’ve been doing that since I was 10". Some instinctive, competitive match had been struck inside us. We climbed up, just to have a look, we could always climb back down if it was too much. We reached the top. We sat shakily smoking a cigarette. People began to notice us and the heckling began. There was no way out now. Who was going to go first? I thought it should be me, Tom thought it should be him. I'm not sure how long the deliberation went on for but we certainly worked the crowd up, kids and adults waiting on our every move. Someone was going to have to go. Tom jumped, I held my breath until I could see him again. Our audience cheered, superman! He was fine, hurt his neck a bit but nothing serious and it looked like fun. I ask him if it’s worth it, his reply- "what’s the worst that could happen?" Little did he know that I was about to have a stab at answering his question! He told me to wait so that he could film my jump, had to get this amazing feat on camera. And there I was, boyfriend poised and ready to record, crowd shouting "Jump! Jump! Jump!" in time with my racing heart. Now or never. My toes curl over the edge of the rock, my legs are shaking so hard, my knees buckle. I sit back down. I don’t want to be here. I don’t remember jumping, just thinking that it wasn’t nice. I’m in the water, can’t breathe and all I can feel is this intense, indescribable pain in my back, like I had been sliced straight through just above my waist. I’m shouting help but only hear laughter. It feels like minutes pass before people realize there is something wrong. Tom jumps in and swims me over to the rocks. People want to call an ambulance but I’m sure the pain will stop any minute.

Everything starts to fade, can’t hear, can’t see, can’t feel. Every time I black out I feel saved. I’m out of the water but can’t be laid down on the rocks. Tom is sitting behind me and I somehow find the energy to tell him that I can’t hold myself up, that the pressure on the bottom of my back is too much. This was my spine collapsing. Our protagonist, my boyfriend gets his knees under my shoulders and holds me up. He tells me we are waiting for an ambulance. He won’t let me pass out, I want to hit him. The blackness is so good. The wait is agony, getting on the boat is worse. Can’t think, just pain. Hope Tom is holding my hand. They won’t give me any oxygen but I can’t breathe. I give in to the pain and pass out. I’m in hospital, no one appears to speak English and I don’t know where my Tom is. Doctors pass in and out of the room occasionally poking my legs. I can smell something really bad and I’m sure that the old man next to me has defecated himself but no one will help him. They cut me out of my bikini and a nurse comes over with a big needle. She injects me with the most incredible sensation, I literally feel the liquid run along my veins, from my shoulders down to my toes, the pain slowly fades and I’m floating. The scans show that I have broken my spine, one of my vertebrae is now in five pieces. I need to be moved to a hospital 2 hours away by road where there is a spinal specialist. Tom comes back and I stupidly ask to see the x-ray. There is a piece of bone sticking into my spinal cord. We hold hands for a while. Don’t know what to think, probably best not to think at all. The ambulance journey to the hospital is hell. I am told not to move in the slightest. Tom has gone to get Suzi but has everything; both our phones and my passport. The ambulance man assures me before we leave that he is following behind. As we drive along the uneven mountain roads all I can think about is that piece of bone and concentrate desperately on keeping myself still.


X

XI The boy, a local, climbed out of the sea and proclaimed "I’ve been doing that since I was 10". Some instinctive, competitive match had been struck inside us. We climbed up, just to have a look, we could always climb back down if it was too much. We reached the top. We sat shakily smoking a cigarette. People began to notice us and the heckling began. There was no way out now. Who was going to go first? I thought it should be me, Tom thought it should be him. I'm not sure how long the deliberation went on for but we certainly worked the crowd up, kids and adults waiting on our every move. Someone was going to have to go. Tom jumped, I held my breath until I could see him again. Our audience cheered, superman! He was fine, hurt his neck a bit but nothing serious and it looked like fun. I ask him if it’s worth it, his reply- "what’s the worst that could happen?" Little did he know that I was about to have a stab at answering his question! He told me to wait so that he could film my jump, had to get this amazing feat on camera. And there I was, boyfriend poised and ready to record, crowd shouting "Jump! Jump! Jump!" in time with my racing heart. Now or never. My toes curl over the edge of the rock, my legs are shaking so hard, my knees buckle. I sit back down. I don’t want to be here. I don’t remember jumping, just thinking that it wasn’t nice. I’m in the water, can’t breathe and all I can feel is this intense, indescribable pain in my back, like I had been sliced straight through just above my waist. I’m shouting help but only hear laughter. It feels like minutes pass before people realize there is something wrong. Tom jumps in and swims me over to the rocks. People want to call an ambulance but I’m sure the pain will stop any minute.

Everything starts to fade, can’t hear, can’t see, can’t feel. Every time I black out I feel saved. I’m out of the water but can’t be laid down on the rocks. Tom is sitting behind me and I somehow find the energy to tell him that I can’t hold myself up, that the pressure on the bottom of my back is too much. This was my spine collapsing. Our protagonist, my boyfriend gets his knees under my shoulders and holds me up. He tells me we are waiting for an ambulance. He won’t let me pass out, I want to hit him. The blackness is so good. The wait is agony, getting on the boat is worse. Can’t think, just pain. Hope Tom is holding my hand. They won’t give me any oxygen but I can’t breathe. I give in to the pain and pass out. I’m in hospital, no one appears to speak English and I don’t know where my Tom is. Doctors pass in and out of the room occasionally poking my legs. I can smell something really bad and I’m sure that the old man next to me has defecated himself but no one will help him. They cut me out of my bikini and a nurse comes over with a big needle. She injects me with the most incredible sensation, I literally feel the liquid run along my veins, from my shoulders down to my toes, the pain slowly fades and I’m floating. The scans show that I have broken my spine, one of my vertebrae is now in five pieces. I need to be moved to a hospital 2 hours away by road where there is a spinal specialist. Tom comes back and I stupidly ask to see the x-ray. There is a piece of bone sticking into my spinal cord. We hold hands for a while. Don’t know what to think, probably best not to think at all. The ambulance journey to the hospital is hell. I am told not to move in the slightest. Tom has gone to get Suzi but has everything; both our phones and my passport. The ambulance man assures me before we leave that he is following behind. As we drive along the uneven mountain roads all I can think about is that piece of bone and concentrate desperately on keeping myself still.


VII

VIII

Artwork BY Anna Chilton www.annachilton.co.uk

It was never certain that I would come out of the operation able to walk. The

The inflatable body splint they have put around me is deflating. I am slipping down the stretcher and the strap which is meant to be around my waist is now

first thing I remember after the operation is Tom asking me to wiggle my toes. It worked. I was ok and with a little work I would be able to walk. Still couldn’t feel any emotion. Back to sleep.

around my neck, choking me. The

ambulance stops and the driver kindly informs me, in broken English, that they have lost my boyfriend. I cry for the first time. I am broken and alone in a foreign country. When we get to the hospital I am wheeled in and lie between two screens. On my right I can see a man’s feet. He is not moving. I can just about hear his faint moaning. Two men walk in every so often and burst into tears at the foot of his bed. I lie there and obsessively plead for him to keep making that agonizing noise. Then he stops, he is gone and the two men wail.

A man walks over to me, he has come straight out of surgery and still has blood on his green overalls. He looks at me with sad eyes and then utters the words I had denied from my thoughts. "You need to be operated on immediately, the position of the bone in your back means that you are in serious risk of brain damage and paralysis. We need your consent." I heard his words but he wasn’t talking to me. This wasn’t happening to me. I discover you put yourself in a bizarre place when shit happens. It is almost

as though you are watching a movie, you sympathize with the characters but that is as far as it goes. I really wanted Tom. I wanted him to hear what the doctor was saying. I wanted it to be real to someone so he would know what to do. They bought over some forms for me to sign. They were in Croatian. I signed. I’m given more morphine and moved onto the trauma ward where I lie staring out the window willing Tom to come back to me. I haven’t slept, I haven’t eaten in a very long time. I watch as the sun comes up and wonder if it is possible to die of pain.

I’m so sure my body is

just going to give in any minute. I turn to look at the door of the ward for a while. All I do is lie there waiting for Tom. Time passes and then I see his kind, anxious face peer around the door. He’s here. I shall never forget the overwhelming relief - I could relax a little now, maybe even sleep. He lay on the bed beside me and held my hand. He told me that Suzi had given in, broken down on the way and that he had had to hitch hike with a man who kept falling asleep at the wheel. It had taken him 6 hours to get to me. I can’t imagine what hell that must have been, knowing what was happening.

The recovery in Croatian hospital was eventful. I was still having problems breathing and after further, agonizing x-rays the surgeons told me I had cracked my sternum as well. I walked three days after the operation. I was on a ward with three incontinent grannies and a flock of pigeons who would pop in to see how we were all doing. Tom bought me a bb gun. My amazing friend came straight from the festival she was at to the hospital and stayed for the duration. Mum and dad flew out and I was very entertained by them all. The bastards made me laugh all the time and despite how agonizing all the laughter was I would have wallowed in misery without them. Two weeks later I was flown back to England in an air ambulance, landing at Biggin Hill. The British surgeon talked me through my MRI scans and x-rays, re-done in hospital the following day. I had broken my first lumbar vertebra into five pieces, cracked my sternum, damaged three vertebrae in my neck and pulled a ligament in my lower back. I had permanent damage to my spinal cord. He stressed that I had been incredibly lucky. I had survived.


VII

VIII

Artwork BY Anna Chilton www.annachilton.co.uk

It was never certain that I would come out of the operation able to walk. The

The inflatable body splint they have put around me is deflating. I am slipping down the stretcher and the strap which is meant to be around my waist is now

first thing I remember after the operation is Tom asking me to wiggle my toes. It worked. I was ok and with a little work I would be able to walk. Still couldn’t feel any emotion. Back to sleep.

around my neck, choking me. The

ambulance stops and the driver kindly informs me, in broken English, that they have lost my boyfriend. I cry for the first time. I am broken and alone in a foreign country. When we get to the hospital I am wheeled in and lie between two screens. On my right I can see a man’s feet. He is not moving. I can just about hear his faint moaning. Two men walk in every so often and burst into tears at the foot of his bed. I lie there and obsessively plead for him to keep making that agonizing noise. Then he stops, he is gone and the two men wail.

A man walks over to me, he has come straight out of surgery and still has blood on his green overalls. He looks at me with sad eyes and then utters the words I had denied from my thoughts. "You need to be operated on immediately, the position of the bone in your back means that you are in serious risk of brain damage and paralysis. We need your consent." I heard his words but he wasn’t talking to me. This wasn’t happening to me. I discover you put yourself in a bizarre place when shit happens. It is almost

as though you are watching a movie, you sympathize with the characters but that is as far as it goes. I really wanted Tom. I wanted him to hear what the doctor was saying. I wanted it to be real to someone so he would know what to do. They bought over some forms for me to sign. They were in Croatian. I signed. I’m given more morphine and moved onto the trauma ward where I lie staring out the window willing Tom to come back to me. I haven’t slept, I haven’t eaten in a very long time. I watch as the sun comes up and wonder if it is possible to die of pain.

I’m so sure my body is

just going to give in any minute. I turn to look at the door of the ward for a while. All I do is lie there waiting for Tom. Time passes and then I see his kind, anxious face peer around the door. He’s here. I shall never forget the overwhelming relief - I could relax a little now, maybe even sleep. He lay on the bed beside me and held my hand. He told me that Suzi had given in, broken down on the way and that he had had to hitch hike with a man who kept falling asleep at the wheel. It had taken him 6 hours to get to me. I can’t imagine what hell that must have been, knowing what was happening.

The recovery in Croatian hospital was eventful. I was still having problems breathing and after further, agonizing x-rays the surgeons told me I had cracked my sternum as well. I walked three days after the operation. I was on a ward with three incontinent grannies and a flock of pigeons who would pop in to see how we were all doing. Tom bought me a bb gun. My amazing friend came straight from the festival she was at to the hospital and stayed for the duration. Mum and dad flew out and I was very entertained by them all. The bastards made me laugh all the time and despite how agonizing all the laughter was I would have wallowed in misery without them. Two weeks later I was flown back to England in an air ambulance, landing at Biggin Hill. The British surgeon talked me through my MRI scans and x-rays, re-done in hospital the following day. I had broken my first lumbar vertebra into five pieces, cracked my sternum, damaged three vertebrae in my neck and pulled a ligament in my lower back. I had permanent damage to my spinal cord. He stressed that I had been incredibly lucky. I had survived.


XIV

XV India

Welcome to Hell TGF Ever fancy a holiday somewhere you know its always going to be hot? Well why not spend a week in Hell..? No, really. Hell is a small village in Stjørdal, Norway with a population of 352. And it is NOT hot. Temperatures in Hell get as low as -20. Why not stay in the 3 star Rica Hell Hotel? “Rica Hell hotel is a first class conference hotel in the heart of central

Tom O’Neil Norway . All 157 guest rooms and suites are well-furnished with colour TV, radio, mini-bar and hairdryers. Additional recreational facilities includes swimming pool, saunas, fitness room and solarium.” Did you know the suicide rate in Norway is over 1200 people per year? Hmmm…

I feel a mixture of confusion, exhilaration and utter exhaustion surge through me as I sit down in an Italian restaurant in Kathmandu to enjoy what will be one of the best meals I’ve ever had. It was not the quality of the food. It was the total satisfaction I felt sitting at that table with three friends whom I had just driven 4500km with from Kochi, southern India, right up into Kathmandu in the Himalayas, in what was essentially a lawnmower. We had just completed the ‘Rickshaw Run’, one of the most exciting and unique ways to see India. The brief was simple, turn up in Kochi on New Year ’s Eve 2007, meet your rickshaw and the other teams taking on this epic and bizarre rally, try to avoid too much of the impossibly strong Indian whisky at the New Years Eve party and then next morning drive to Kathmandu in your 2 stroke, 145.4cc city taxi, taking whatever route you want with no support whatsoever.

Map courtesy of Wikipedia; Artwork (right) by Chetan Kumar www.myspace.com/cheman86

The start of the rally saw sixty four teams standing at the start line all trying to shake off a collective hangover which was particularly acute in the searing heat. A team of two freelance cameramen decided to drive with us as they felt that two teams with four men all called Tom might present them with some good footage. In a convoy of three rickshaws we left Kochi and within hours found ourselves driving through the tea growing districts towards the town of Munaar. The views were instantly jaw dropping. We drove through rolling hills covered for as far as you could see with lush green tea plants, occasionally punctuated by brightly coloured dots of sari-wearing women tending the plants. The plan was to follow the road to the industrial city of Chennai where we hoped to casually nip onto the ring road of the city and then cruise up the east coast the following morning. This was the first night that things started to go wrong.


XIV

XV India

Welcome to Hell TGF Ever fancy a holiday somewhere you know its always going to be hot? Well why not spend a week in Hell..? No, really. Hell is a small village in Stjørdal, Norway with a population of 352. And it is NOT hot. Temperatures in Hell get as low as -20. Why not stay in the 3 star Rica Hell Hotel? “Rica Hell hotel is a first class conference hotel in the heart of central

Tom O’Neil Norway . All 157 guest rooms and suites are well-furnished with colour TV, radio, mini-bar and hairdryers. Additional recreational facilities includes swimming pool, saunas, fitness room and solarium.” Did you know the suicide rate in Norway is over 1200 people per year? Hmmm…

I feel a mixture of confusion, exhilaration and utter exhaustion surge through me as I sit down in an Italian restaurant in Kathmandu to enjoy what will be one of the best meals I’ve ever had. It was not the quality of the food. It was the total satisfaction I felt sitting at that table with three friends whom I had just driven 4500km with from Kochi, southern India, right up into Kathmandu in the Himalayas, in what was essentially a lawnmower. We had just completed the ‘Rickshaw Run’, one of the most exciting and unique ways to see India. The brief was simple, turn up in Kochi on New Year ’s Eve 2007, meet your rickshaw and the other teams taking on this epic and bizarre rally, try to avoid too much of the impossibly strong Indian whisky at the New Years Eve party and then next morning drive to Kathmandu in your 2 stroke, 145.4cc city taxi, taking whatever route you want with no support whatsoever.

Map courtesy of Wikipedia; Artwork (right) by Chetan Kumar www.myspace.com/cheman86

The start of the rally saw sixty four teams standing at the start line all trying to shake off a collective hangover which was particularly acute in the searing heat. A team of two freelance cameramen decided to drive with us as they felt that two teams with four men all called Tom might present them with some good footage. In a convoy of three rickshaws we left Kochi and within hours found ourselves driving through the tea growing districts towards the town of Munaar. The views were instantly jaw dropping. We drove through rolling hills covered for as far as you could see with lush green tea plants, occasionally punctuated by brightly coloured dots of sari-wearing women tending the plants. The plan was to follow the road to the industrial city of Chennai where we hoped to casually nip onto the ring road of the city and then cruise up the east coast the following morning. This was the first night that things started to go wrong.


XVI Inevitably, it transpired that the ring road was only half built and the map wasn’t up to date so we ended up having to take the road into Chennai. Initially it seemed like it was going to be a relatively bearable detour but slowly the amount of pollution in the air started to affect us all. We tied t-shirts around our mouths and noses much to the amusement of passing locals on motorcycles who shook our hands, laughed or seemed simply confused to see four over-sized white men driving little rickshaws through the city centre. Eventually we reached what seemed to be some sort of crucial set of crossroads in the centre of town. The light had now disappeared and we waited in line at the front of an endless queue of traffic whilst lorries, cars, motorcycles, cows and bicycles went across our field of vision at their varying speeds. About fifteen minutes seemed to pass when without warning the policeman manning this disaster area flicked the lights from red to green. The ensuing chaos was quite unforgettable. The rickshaws and motorbikes which had snaked their way to the front of the queue all squealed into gear and rushed off in a mad panic together as fast as they could. We were swept along in this wave of 50cc traffic with lumbering lorries slowly gaining speed behind us and cars, with their superior acceleration, bullying their way through. This unstoppable momentum swept us out of town onto the worst road we had encountered yet. After travelling 40 km

XVII out of our way we eventually reconnected with the motorway and collapsed into a roadside hotel with an over-enthusiastic hotel manager called Vinod who insisted on standing in the corner of our room smiling. We got rid of Vinod and slept badly for about five hours. The poverty started to become more apparent as we left the affluence and astounding beauty of southern India. However, the highway was staying in good condition and we decided that we were covering too much ground too easily. We concluded that an excursion was needed and settled on driving to the coast towards a small village called Kallatapan. After about five minutes of leaving the highway we realised that the likelihood of a westerner ever having visited this town let alone the possibility of a hotel being there was zero. The people we pass on the way to Kallatapanall collectively stop and stare with absolute confusion on their faces. We similarly stare back. People don’t even wave here. They just stand and look with their eyes wide open as if what they see is almost beyond comprehension. It’s a very strange thing to have people look at you like that, and we can’t tell if we’re intruding or welcome here. No one speaks much and we just keep driving for the coast completely unsure of what to expect.

The road merges into a track as we approach the coast and we roll to a stop on the beachfront to witness fishing boats being dragged up the shore in the dying light. Initially no one approaches us but more and more people start to

It’s time to leave and everyone waves goodbye. A boy called Dilip escorts us back to a clean hotel with a rooftop restaurant showing a Bollywood film. None of us seemed quite sure to what had just happened. We sleep

laughing and speaking very quickly in Hindi. We smile back and speak very slowly in English in the hope of some mutual comprehension. They smile back and speak more slowly in Hindi laughing at us. One of us gets a present of a crab tied to a piece of string. The comedy value of this seems to break the barriers sufficiently and then complete chaos descends all around us. We play them some music on the stereos installed on our rickshaws which gets a few smiles but they seem much more fascinated by my monocular and all take turns to look out to sea with it. They show us their fishing boats and I swap a roll up for a bidi (strong tobacco wrapped in a leaf tied up with string) with one of the fisherman who seems as disgusted by my roll ups as I am by his!

wonderfully and despite my camera getting nicked whilst we slept, I still look back on Ongole and Kallatapan as two of the best places I’ve ever been to, although I wouldn’t recommend a visit! For the next few days we cruised up the highway enjoying the hospitable and friendly towns scattered along the coast. We turn in land at Orissa, the poorest state in India, which still had an extremely tribal feel to it. The infrastructure starts to fail us around this point and we regret turning off the blissfully smooth highway, which would have taken us on an easy journey into Nepal. But we weren’t here for an easy journey. crowd round the rickshaws smiling,

Photo: Tom O’Neil


XVI Inevitably, it transpired that the ring road was only half built and the map wasn’t up to date so we ended up having to take the road into Chennai. Initially it seemed like it was going to be a relatively bearable detour but slowly the amount of pollution in the air started to affect us all. We tied t-shirts around our mouths and noses much to the amusement of passing locals on motorcycles who shook our hands, laughed or seemed simply confused to see four over-sized white men driving little rickshaws through the city centre. Eventually we reached what seemed to be some sort of crucial set of crossroads in the centre of town. The light had now disappeared and we waited in line at the front of an endless queue of traffic whilst lorries, cars, motorcycles, cows and bicycles went across our field of vision at their varying speeds. About fifteen minutes seemed to pass when without warning the policeman manning this disaster area flicked the lights from red to green. The ensuing chaos was quite unforgettable. The rickshaws and motorbikes which had snaked their way to the front of the queue all squealed into gear and rushed off in a mad panic together as fast as they could. We were swept along in this wave of 50cc traffic with lumbering lorries slowly gaining speed behind us and cars, with their superior acceleration, bullying their way through. This unstoppable momentum swept us out of town onto the worst road we had encountered yet. After travelling 40 km

XVII out of our way we eventually reconnected with the motorway and collapsed into a roadside hotel with an over-enthusiastic hotel manager called Vinod who insisted on standing in the corner of our room smiling. We got rid of Vinod and slept badly for about five hours. The poverty started to become more apparent as we left the affluence and astounding beauty of southern India. However, the highway was staying in good condition and we decided that we were covering too much ground too easily. We concluded that an excursion was needed and settled on driving to the coast towards a small village called Kallatapan. After about five minutes of leaving the highway we realised that the likelihood of a westerner ever having visited this town let alone the possibility of a hotel being there was zero. The people we pass on the way to Kallatapanall collectively stop and stare with absolute confusion on their faces. We similarly stare back. People don’t even wave here. They just stand and look with their eyes wide open as if what they see is almost beyond comprehension. It’s a very strange thing to have people look at you like that, and we can’t tell if we’re intruding or welcome here. No one speaks much and we just keep driving for the coast completely unsure of what to expect.

The road merges into a track as we approach the coast and we roll to a stop on the beachfront to witness fishing boats being dragged up the shore in the dying light. Initially no one approaches us but more and more people start to

It’s time to leave and everyone waves goodbye. A boy called Dilip escorts us back to a clean hotel with a rooftop restaurant showing a Bollywood film. None of us seemed quite sure to what had just happened. We sleep

laughing and speaking very quickly in Hindi. We smile back and speak very slowly in English in the hope of some mutual comprehension. They smile back and speak more slowly in Hindi laughing at us. One of us gets a present of a crab tied to a piece of string. The comedy value of this seems to break the barriers sufficiently and then complete chaos descends all around us. We play them some music on the stereos installed on our rickshaws which gets a few smiles but they seem much more fascinated by my monocular and all take turns to look out to sea with it. They show us their fishing boats and I swap a roll up for a bidi (strong tobacco wrapped in a leaf tied up with string) with one of the fisherman who seems as disgusted by my roll ups as I am by his!

wonderfully and despite my camera getting nicked whilst we slept, I still look back on Ongole and Kallatapan as two of the best places I’ve ever been to, although I wouldn’t recommend a visit! For the next few days we cruised up the highway enjoying the hospitable and friendly towns scattered along the coast. We turn in land at Orissa, the poorest state in India, which still had an extremely tribal feel to it. The infrastructure starts to fail us around this point and we regret turning off the blissfully smooth highway, which would have taken us on an easy journey into Nepal. But we weren’t here for an easy journey. crowd round the rickshaws smiling,

Photo: Tom O’Neil


XVIII Two of the Tom’s were struck with crippling food poisoning in Orissa and we stopped for a day to allow them to try and recover. They both seemed delirious and extremely worried as sweat, sick and an ungodly amount of shit seemed to ooze out of them. Rhys (one of the camera crew) passed it off in a macho fashion as ‘a bit of gastro’ (gastroenteritis) and thankfully, he was right. Both victims had sudden swift recoveries the next morning. The route we had decided on would take us through some of the most notoriously violent and poor areas of India. Travelling for the next week was a testing experience. After a few days of confrontations with

XIX bandits (who varied in calibre from violent stick wielding maniacs to two boys gamely holding a piece of ribbon across the road), a few break downs and some terrifying night driving we arrived in Bihar Sharif, a town just south of the Ganges, late at night. Arriving there was unforgettable. Due to collective hysteria, exhaustion or just false hope we had built Bihar Sharif up in our heads as a thriving, modern metropolis that we would roll into with great fanfare and fist pumping as we approached the last leg of our journey. It had seemed, on the map, a kind of oasis after the draining travelling of North India. It was a dried up puddle.

We drove along the unnervingly empty streets occasionally seeing an unidentifiable animal stagger across the road. Bihar Sharif had obviously been abandoned by its government and most of its people a long time ago. Potholes the size of cars were scattered amongst the dirt roads and animal and human waste was piled high either side. The smell of the place was indescribable. However, in this ghost town a hotel magically emerged out of what appeared to be the main road through the town centre. This was a testament to the hospitality of the Indian people. Unfortunately, the place itself was not. This utterly horrible hotel seemed to be run by a collective of drunken vagrants and their ring leader Shree, whose hands and feet were dyed pink. This was apparently the local punishment for incessant opium smoking. We left the rickshaws in the mud out the front of the hotel hoping they wouldn’t be stolen and lay on stained mattresses, mosquitoes biting our eyes, and the smell of shit wafting around our faces. After a long night staring at the ceiling, morning came and we left without a word to one another as if trying to forget that

this place had ever happened. The road to Nepal was incomparable in its beauty. We entered with great efficiency through the Eastern border and instantly noticed the change in the people. Western culture has obviously permeated into Nepal and it felt much more familiar. Notably, the women here were very happy to talk to us and despite the blatant poverty there was a much greater feeling of community, but most obviously, the children were playing games with one another. After the slightly jading experience of Bihar it was incredibly rejuvenating to see such happiness everywhere. We make it to Kathmandu in two days after reaching the border and like the opening days of driving through southern India, it’s one of the best parts of the whole trip. On the beautiful winding road through the Himalayas into Kathmandu, word has filtered through of the ridiculous foreigners driving through India into Kathmandu and people line the road to smile and wave. It’s the perfect end to an extreme trip and I drive in a daze through Kathmandu completely bemused but happy to have finally arrived.

How to: •Register via the website (theadventurists.com) and get fundraising. £1000 minimum per team goes to the Mercy Corps and Frank. •Flights to India vary in cost from £350 to £800 return so hunt around and book early. •Visas for India have to be obtained before you go and are £30 from the Indian Embassy in London. •Visas for Nepal can be obtained at the border and are US$30


XVIII Two of the Tom’s were struck with crippling food poisoning in Orissa and we stopped for a day to allow them to try and recover. They both seemed delirious and extremely worried as sweat, sick and an ungodly amount of shit seemed to ooze out of them. Rhys (one of the camera crew) passed it off in a macho fashion as ‘a bit of gastro’ (gastroenteritis) and thankfully, he was right. Both victims had sudden swift recoveries the next morning. The route we had decided on would take us through some of the most notoriously violent and poor areas of India. Travelling for the next week was a testing experience. After a few days of confrontations with

XIX bandits (who varied in calibre from violent stick wielding maniacs to two boys gamely holding a piece of ribbon across the road), a few break downs and some terrifying night driving we arrived in Bihar Sharif, a town just south of the Ganges, late at night. Arriving there was unforgettable. Due to collective hysteria, exhaustion or just false hope we had built Bihar Sharif up in our heads as a thriving, modern metropolis that we would roll into with great fanfare and fist pumping as we approached the last leg of our journey. It had seemed, on the map, a kind of oasis after the draining travelling of North India. It was a dried up puddle.

We drove along the unnervingly empty streets occasionally seeing an unidentifiable animal stagger across the road. Bihar Sharif had obviously been abandoned by its government and most of its people a long time ago. Potholes the size of cars were scattered amongst the dirt roads and animal and human waste was piled high either side. The smell of the place was indescribable. However, in this ghost town a hotel magically emerged out of what appeared to be the main road through the town centre. This was a testament to the hospitality of the Indian people. Unfortunately, the place itself was not. This utterly horrible hotel seemed to be run by a collective of drunken vagrants and their ring leader Shree, whose hands and feet were dyed pink. This was apparently the local punishment for incessant opium smoking. We left the rickshaws in the mud out the front of the hotel hoping they wouldn’t be stolen and lay on stained mattresses, mosquitoes biting our eyes, and the smell of shit wafting around our faces. After a long night staring at the ceiling, morning came and we left without a word to one another as if trying to forget that

this place had ever happened. The road to Nepal was incomparable in its beauty. We entered with great efficiency through the Eastern border and instantly noticed the change in the people. Western culture has obviously permeated into Nepal and it felt much more familiar. Notably, the women here were very happy to talk to us and despite the blatant poverty there was a much greater feeling of community, but most obviously, the children were playing games with one another. After the slightly jading experience of Bihar it was incredibly rejuvenating to see such happiness everywhere. We make it to Kathmandu in two days after reaching the border and like the opening days of driving through southern India, it’s one of the best parts of the whole trip. On the beautiful winding road through the Himalayas into Kathmandu, word has filtered through of the ridiculous foreigners driving through India into Kathmandu and people line the road to smile and wave. It’s the perfect end to an extreme trip and I drive in a daze through Kathmandu completely bemused but happy to have finally arrived.

How to: •Register via the website (theadventurists.com) and get fundraising. £1000 minimum per team goes to the Mercy Corps and Frank. •Flights to India vary in cost from £350 to £800 return so hunt around and book early. •Visas for India have to be obtained before you go and are £30 from the Indian Embassy in London. •Visas for Nepal can be obtained at the border and are US$30


XX

XXI

POLITICAL

Tramps, ID cards and I

Why, Dave and I wondered - Dave having now transformed from the Ancient Mariner to John Stuart Mill – could we not just be left alone to live privately, if we do so within the law. If you wouldn’t let your friend read your diary why let the government hold your genetic secrets?

Dave and I then began to agree again- I was happy- it’s up to us, the people, to stand up and shout and stop assaults on our freedom. Cynicism and Apathy are symptoms of a slow deep sleep from which we may just wake from in chains - binds of our own indifference.

We earnestly discussed why the government wanted so much information

Sadly - for us both, I think- we then disagreed. I didn’t think we were teetering on the precipice of a police

about us. Is it really

reasonable for the bureaucracy to know who we fuck, our genetic make- up,

state. Orwell’s

the structure of our Iris; so that a firsttime shoplifter in Berwick-upon-Tweed can be quickly caught? And how exactly will a small plastic card prevent terrorist attacks?

but coming ever closer with every piece of insidious legislation eroding liberty hard won, and easily lost. Making that little bit more of the private public.

My train then arrived. The question was posed, I acquiesced. But this time I’d been given more than I gave. I was awakened. And I couldn’t help but think of something else Orwell wrote: “perhaps a lunatic is merely the minority of one. Perhaps the tag of lunacy belongs more properly to us, to the silent apathetic majority; who are slowly edging, slightly, imperceptibly into a disconcerting new word.” Action is needed. Be like me and Dave, say no to ID cards…

Sam Muston The question was posed melodically, like a nursery rhyme, albeit a slurred one ‘Is-anyone-sitting-there?’ A question which, reluctantly I answered in the affirmative. In an empty train station waiting room at 10.30pm it seemed a bit unnecessary. In life, it seems to me, some people are blessed with demeanours that ooze power, grace or élan. Mine attracts

the homeless. Having tried to hide behind my copy of the Independent and avoid eye contact - oh, how I longed for the Daily Telegraph - the game was up. The process by which monies are requested, for the fabled ‘phone call’ or cup of coffee ,is usually mercilessly quick. I immediately acquiesce; smile, nod and vainly attempt to gain some control of the situation by the thought that after all they need it more than me, and try not to think of myself as a passive dupe assisting on the yellow brick road to the off licence. He, perhaps somehow sensing my train wasn’t for at least twenty minutes, settled himself in. The whisky was proffered; I declined. And so we began on the last ten years of his life, which seemed, in light of him being a northern tramp, to have been remarkable in its lavishness: trips to Thailand, bars in Spain and then the predictable falling out with his wife. I, lacking a considered facial expression for such stories of austerity, usually smile and look around a lot.

This, however, was different. There was something vaguely hypnotic about ‘Daves’ face: the remnants of a once plump face, like Humes but with deep-set stoic eyes which contributed to a general look not un-akin to that of the Ancient Mariner. As his monologue continued, reaching its more unpleasant bits I became a little unnerved. Perhaps he was a lunatic. I envisaged tomorrows Doncaster evening post ‘STUDENT ATTACKED FOR

£12 AND MORRISSEY TICKET (STANDING)’ Then, strangely, he changed tack and started talking politics - ID cards. By this time we’d found an equilibrium, Dave and I. And so, even though the topic had never really made a dent into my consciousness, we began to really talk. It wasn’t that I imagined substance abusers had nothing of interest to say – after all, some of my closest friends regularly abuse substances- it was merely that the logic of the situation had changed.

Artwork by Anna Chilton

future of a boot stamping on a human face is, to me, distant. Distant

www.annachilton.co.uk


XX

XXI

POLITICAL

Tramps, ID cards and I

Why, Dave and I wondered - Dave having now transformed from the Ancient Mariner to John Stuart Mill – could we not just be left alone to live privately, if we do so within the law. If you wouldn’t let your friend read your diary why let the government hold your genetic secrets?

Dave and I then began to agree again- I was happy- it’s up to us, the people, to stand up and shout and stop assaults on our freedom. Cynicism and Apathy are symptoms of a slow deep sleep from which we may just wake from in chains - binds of our own indifference.

We earnestly discussed why the government wanted so much information

Sadly - for us both, I think- we then disagreed. I didn’t think we were teetering on the precipice of a police

about us. Is it really

reasonable for the bureaucracy to know who we fuck, our genetic make- up,

state. Orwell’s

the structure of our Iris; so that a firsttime shoplifter in Berwick-upon-Tweed can be quickly caught? And how exactly will a small plastic card prevent terrorist attacks?

but coming ever closer with every piece of insidious legislation eroding liberty hard won, and easily lost. Making that little bit more of the private public.

My train then arrived. The question was posed, I acquiesced. But this time I’d been given more than I gave. I was awakened. And I couldn’t help but think of something else Orwell wrote: “perhaps a lunatic is merely the minority of one. Perhaps the tag of lunacy belongs more properly to us, to the silent apathetic majority; who are slowly edging, slightly, imperceptibly into a disconcerting new word.” Action is needed. Be like me and Dave, say no to ID cards…

Sam Muston The question was posed melodically, like a nursery rhyme, albeit a slurred one ‘Is-anyone-sitting-there?’ A question which, reluctantly I answered in the affirmative. In an empty train station waiting room at 10.30pm it seemed a bit unnecessary. In life, it seems to me, some people are blessed with demeanours that ooze power, grace or élan. Mine attracts

the homeless. Having tried to hide behind my copy of the Independent and avoid eye contact - oh, how I longed for the Daily Telegraph - the game was up. The process by which monies are requested, for the fabled ‘phone call’ or cup of coffee ,is usually mercilessly quick. I immediately acquiesce; smile, nod and vainly attempt to gain some control of the situation by the thought that after all they need it more than me, and try not to think of myself as a passive dupe assisting on the yellow brick road to the off licence. He, perhaps somehow sensing my train wasn’t for at least twenty minutes, settled himself in. The whisky was proffered; I declined. And so we began on the last ten years of his life, which seemed, in light of him being a northern tramp, to have been remarkable in its lavishness: trips to Thailand, bars in Spain and then the predictable falling out with his wife. I, lacking a considered facial expression for such stories of austerity, usually smile and look around a lot.

This, however, was different. There was something vaguely hypnotic about ‘Daves’ face: the remnants of a once plump face, like Humes but with deep-set stoic eyes which contributed to a general look not un-akin to that of the Ancient Mariner. As his monologue continued, reaching its more unpleasant bits I became a little unnerved. Perhaps he was a lunatic. I envisaged tomorrows Doncaster evening post ‘STUDENT ATTACKED FOR

£12 AND MORRISSEY TICKET (STANDING)’ Then, strangely, he changed tack and started talking politics - ID cards. By this time we’d found an equilibrium, Dave and I. And so, even though the topic had never really made a dent into my consciousness, we began to really talk. It wasn’t that I imagined substance abusers had nothing of interest to say – after all, some of my closest friends regularly abuse substances- it was merely that the logic of the situation had changed.

Artwork by Anna Chilton

future of a boot stamping on a human face is, to me, distant. Distant

www.annachilton.co.uk


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‘The Strange Death of Dr David Kelly’ Silkie Carlo “To use the legal qualification,” says Norman Baker rather carefully, “I am convinced beyond reasonable doubt that Dr David Kelly was murdered”. The sincerity with which he says this is aided by the fact that he is a remarkably honest and rational Member of Parliament, whose passion is for justice rather than book selling sensationalist cries of ‘conspiracy’. Norman Baker has been the MP for Lewes in Sussex for ten years – a significant feat for a Liberal Democrat in an overwhelmingly Conservative community, and one that marks his dedication as a hardworking representative in touch with his constituents, above all else. For years, Baker has earned widespread acclaim, to the government discomfort, as a notorious parliamentarian who ceaselessly scrutinises executive activity - most notably causing Peter Mandelson’s resignation from government and revealing MPs’ increasingly extensive expenses claims. However, with the publication of his book, The Strange Death of David Kelly, Baker risked his respected role by going further to

question not only the ultimate integrity of our

Government, but of our police force and security services. It was July 17th 2003, amidst “dodgy” and “sexed up” dossiers making a case for war in Iraq, when “the world’s best weapons inspector” died in horrific, and undeniably mysterious, circumstances- the motive as elusive as the death. The same morning, he sent an email to a friend and New York Times journalist, talking of “many dark actors playing games”. He later went out for his daily walk, and was found the next morning at the top of Harrowdown Hill with his wrists slashed, as well as having allegedly ingested 29 co-proxamol painkillers. This would be an incongruously painful way to commit suicide – the renowned biochemist would be able to think of many quicker ways to kill himself, rather than cutting his wrist horizontally to sever the ulnar artery – an incision that alone would not kill him. Furthermore, the levels of co-proxamol in his system were considered only a third of that which would have the potential to kill somebody. Even more perplexing is that only a coin-sized mark of blood was found at the scene.

This only scratches the surface of the absurd official account of Dr Kelly’s death. Baker describes the detail animatedly, clearly keen to inspire the sense of injustice he feels over the matter. He holds his arm out, gesturing the slashing of wrists: “with a blunt lipped knife such as this, one would have to really dig into the wrist”, he mimes, and his continuous illustration makes my stomach turn, until I resolve to look at the floor and think of something

Holding the knife would leave fingerprints, and the force needed would leave rather prominent ones – still, none were found (a different before I vomit.

fact which Baker had to forcibly extract using the Freedom of Information Act). “Nobody would commit suicide that way, but nor can murder be explained by what was found,” and based on scientific fact alone, he is correct. “The only answer that makes sense is that he was murdered by other means, and then steps were taken to make the death look like suicide”, he adds, which is where the discrepancy arises between those who simply accept that there is not sufficient evidence to suggest that Dr Kelly committed suicide, and those who

use that fact to conclude that the only other possibility – murder – is to answer. The Strange Death of David Kelly offers a thorough insight into the incoherent evidence and the following Hutton ‘Inquiry’ – ludicrously non-statutory, truncated in most lines, and hastily commissioned by a government who just so conveniently happened to be departing for their summer recess on the same day as Dr Kelly’s death. Not only does Baker meticulously report every scrap of evidence he can uncover, but he structures and words it quite tantalizingly – one could almost mistake it for a thriller, save for the fact that it is underpinned by a very harsh reality. This is a reality much of the public are not eager to accept or explore. Baker ’s book should be much wider read than it has been, but people are more willing to read fictional tripe, or worse, do not read at all, instead of coming to terms with the far more relevant, scandalous politics of today. Rather irritatingly, the same intellectual clique who swan over decent fiction, such as Orwell’s 1984, undermine openmindedness as “paranoid conspiracy” – ideas apparently too far-fetched or farflung to be true. For me, this is where Baker stops short of offering a truly refreshing book. Some lines of his enquiry are abbreviated by his


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XXIII Artwork by Chetan Kumar www.myspace.com/cheman86

‘The Strange Death of Dr David Kelly’ Silkie Carlo “To use the legal qualification,” says Norman Baker rather carefully, “I am convinced beyond reasonable doubt that Dr David Kelly was murdered”. The sincerity with which he says this is aided by the fact that he is a remarkably honest and rational Member of Parliament, whose passion is for justice rather than book selling sensationalist cries of ‘conspiracy’. Norman Baker has been the MP for Lewes in Sussex for ten years – a significant feat for a Liberal Democrat in an overwhelmingly Conservative community, and one that marks his dedication as a hardworking representative in touch with his constituents, above all else. For years, Baker has earned widespread acclaim, to the government discomfort, as a notorious parliamentarian who ceaselessly scrutinises executive activity - most notably causing Peter Mandelson’s resignation from government and revealing MPs’ increasingly extensive expenses claims. However, with the publication of his book, The Strange Death of David Kelly, Baker risked his respected role by going further to

question not only the ultimate integrity of our

Government, but of our police force and security services. It was July 17th 2003, amidst “dodgy” and “sexed up” dossiers making a case for war in Iraq, when “the world’s best weapons inspector” died in horrific, and undeniably mysterious, circumstances- the motive as elusive as the death. The same morning, he sent an email to a friend and New York Times journalist, talking of “many dark actors playing games”. He later went out for his daily walk, and was found the next morning at the top of Harrowdown Hill with his wrists slashed, as well as having allegedly ingested 29 co-proxamol painkillers. This would be an incongruously painful way to commit suicide – the renowned biochemist would be able to think of many quicker ways to kill himself, rather than cutting his wrist horizontally to sever the ulnar artery – an incision that alone would not kill him. Furthermore, the levels of co-proxamol in his system were considered only a third of that which would have the potential to kill somebody. Even more perplexing is that only a coin-sized mark of blood was found at the scene.

This only scratches the surface of the absurd official account of Dr Kelly’s death. Baker describes the detail animatedly, clearly keen to inspire the sense of injustice he feels over the matter. He holds his arm out, gesturing the slashing of wrists: “with a blunt lipped knife such as this, one would have to really dig into the wrist”, he mimes, and his continuous illustration makes my stomach turn, until I resolve to look at the floor and think of something

Holding the knife would leave fingerprints, and the force needed would leave rather prominent ones – still, none were found (a different before I vomit.

fact which Baker had to forcibly extract using the Freedom of Information Act). “Nobody would commit suicide that way, but nor can murder be explained by what was found,” and based on scientific fact alone, he is correct. “The only answer that makes sense is that he was murdered by other means, and then steps were taken to make the death look like suicide”, he adds, which is where the discrepancy arises between those who simply accept that there is not sufficient evidence to suggest that Dr Kelly committed suicide, and those who

use that fact to conclude that the only other possibility – murder – is to answer. The Strange Death of David Kelly offers a thorough insight into the incoherent evidence and the following Hutton ‘Inquiry’ – ludicrously non-statutory, truncated in most lines, and hastily commissioned by a government who just so conveniently happened to be departing for their summer recess on the same day as Dr Kelly’s death. Not only does Baker meticulously report every scrap of evidence he can uncover, but he structures and words it quite tantalizingly – one could almost mistake it for a thriller, save for the fact that it is underpinned by a very harsh reality. This is a reality much of the public are not eager to accept or explore. Baker ’s book should be much wider read than it has been, but people are more willing to read fictional tripe, or worse, do not read at all, instead of coming to terms with the far more relevant, scandalous politics of today. Rather irritatingly, the same intellectual clique who swan over decent fiction, such as Orwell’s 1984, undermine openmindedness as “paranoid conspiracy” – ideas apparently too far-fetched or farflung to be true. For me, this is where Baker stops short of offering a truly refreshing book. Some lines of his enquiry are abbreviated by his


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assertion that they are simply too “bizarre”, “weird”, or “absurd”. This includes overlooking the suggestion from a “very senior BBC executive” that a main player (three guesses as to who) in the Hutton Inquiry may have had a secret past of paedophilia that allowed them to be coerced into co-operation; the suggestion of ‘esoteric practices’ or Satanism involved; and the possibility that our own Government may have instigated the killing. These suggestions may well be untrue, and needless to say Baker would not have the capacity to fully investigate each, but they do remain possibilities – and at this stage, to demean any viable possibility would be arrogant and just as closed-minded as accepting suicide as the official verdict. Questions then arise about the largely apathetic nature of the British public on the whole. There is a very strong possibility here that our Government murdered Dr Kelly, or certainly covered up his murder. So where does the corruption of Western governments stop? With the murder of Princess Diana? Or the 3 000 innocent civilians on September 11 th? There is so much that we do know – that we are engaged in an illegal war, in which we have used radioactive weapons; that we befriend some of the most tyrannous governments; that we uprooted the entire population of Diego Garcia to make way for a US military base, in which extraordinary rendition is now admitted;

that we are watched by CCTV, tracked on the internet; – the list really is endless, and is swelling to Orwellian dimensions with proposals such as DNA databases and the mass fluoridation of our water supply. So why are these examples too often met with apathy, and further explorations undermined as ‘conspiracy theories’? Why do so many people assume that our government is a beacon of democracy in which we should feel secure and righteous? Why aren’t the public demanding a withdrawal from Iraq; voting for a new government – hell, even campaigning for a new voting system altogether whereby our votes might actually be fairly represented; and finally, if not for the justice of a whole nation but for just one very important man, why aren’t we demanding a decent inquiry into the strange death of Dr David Kelly?

THOUGHT OF THE PAGE: If vegetarians are trying to save animals, then why do they eat all of their food?

For more in formation visit: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/David_Kelly Photo (right): Emma Dalzell www.emma-dalzell.co.uk


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assertion that they are simply too “bizarre”, “weird”, or “absurd”. This includes overlooking the suggestion from a “very senior BBC executive” that a main player (three guesses as to who) in the Hutton Inquiry may have had a secret past of paedophilia that allowed them to be coerced into co-operation; the suggestion of ‘esoteric practices’ or Satanism involved; and the possibility that our own Government may have instigated the killing. These suggestions may well be untrue, and needless to say Baker would not have the capacity to fully investigate each, but they do remain possibilities – and at this stage, to demean any viable possibility would be arrogant and just as closed-minded as accepting suicide as the official verdict. Questions then arise about the largely apathetic nature of the British public on the whole. There is a very strong possibility here that our Government murdered Dr Kelly, or certainly covered up his murder. So where does the corruption of Western governments stop? With the murder of Princess Diana? Or the 3 000 innocent civilians on September 11 th? There is so much that we do know – that we are engaged in an illegal war, in which we have used radioactive weapons; that we befriend some of the most tyrannous governments; that we uprooted the entire population of Diego Garcia to make way for a US military base, in which extraordinary rendition is now admitted;

that we are watched by CCTV, tracked on the internet; – the list really is endless, and is swelling to Orwellian dimensions with proposals such as DNA databases and the mass fluoridation of our water supply. So why are these examples too often met with apathy, and further explorations undermined as ‘conspiracy theories’? Why do so many people assume that our government is a beacon of democracy in which we should feel secure and righteous? Why aren’t the public demanding a withdrawal from Iraq; voting for a new government – hell, even campaigning for a new voting system altogether whereby our votes might actually be fairly represented; and finally, if not for the justice of a whole nation but for just one very important man, why aren’t we demanding a decent inquiry into the strange death of Dr David Kelly?

THOUGHT OF THE PAGE: If vegetarians are trying to save animals, then why do they eat all of their food?

For more in formation visit: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/David_Kelly Photo (right): Emma Dalzell www.emma-dalzell.co.uk


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MUSIC

Review of Glastonbury 2007 Thorny Strawtree RE: Go to Glastonbury and take acid. Its great full stop. Arrived at Glastonbury, pitched up a tent, actually that’s a lie- I conveniently called my mate after he had pitched up the tent. While waiting for my mate looking very vacant in the Eagle Arms pub, I got offered pills by several blokes. Glastonbury started for me from that moment forth and proceeded along a similar vibe. What were my highlights I hear you ask? Rodrigo & Gabriela, absolutely amazing. But enough about the music the real highlights happen mostly around the Lost Vagueness Field.

Here I ‘danced’ to heavy metal in a chapel, ‘rode around’ in bumper cars as the sun came up and ‘chilled’ out in the tipi field whilst playing giant connect four at 7am. The lo-lights? Deciding in a moment of madness to leave Glastonbury on Sunday night to go to Manchester…whilst high on acid. Standing at the train station waiting for a train at 6am in the pissing rain is just not as fun as it sounds. Anyways, all in

I speak, breathe, live Glastonbury, if it was allowed I all

would definitely live at the festival all year round. So go.

Cocaine Breast-Milk Scandal Rafael LeFevre As Eugene Hutz, the street fighting, border jumping front-man of gypsypunk-rock group Gogol Bordello remarked during the throes of a sickeningly wild after show party “Our good old days my friend, they are today and tomorrow!” A little optimistic on this self-referential bastard’s part when he was capable of speaking the next day he croaked that his head felt like Hephaestus, the clumsy Olympian God of fire and anvils, was repairing a pressure cooker inside his skull - the essential message is still valid. Our Golden Years are now. We are the bright young things, the new Beautiful People. We are the future. Somewhere amongst us is the next Bob Dylan, Leonard Cohen, Charles Bukowski. Would they please fucking step forwards before somebody, the next Charles Manson, has go on a Top Ten based chainsaw rampage to

clear the ground of the talentless cunts taking up our valuable oxygen. We have the power to ensure that meaningful culture is given good and proper attention and that suicide bomb-inciting herpes holes, the next Spice Girls, Take Thats or West Lifes, are X-rayed at conception, so to speak. Never mind Nietzsche, they’re as good an argument for mass-sterilisation as any. Today, some incredibly exciting cultural developments are taking place; the Artwork by Chetan Kumar www.myspace.com/cheman86

problem is there’s too much choice. The Internet is to blame of course, how to filter the constant stream of crap and fish the precious nuggets out of the binary cesspool of shit. Information overload. Over three million artists on Myspace. Four billion songs on iTunes. Three songs for every man, woman and child in China. Forty years ago there was jack shit, that’s why nothing was taken for granted. Talking of that golden age of hemp-wearing, bright-eyed optimism, the

Beatles have a lot to answer for. By writing their own songs they set a deadly precedent, and should be held accountable for the entire oeuvre of every unspeakable singer-songwriter from the early sixties to today. Inconsiderate tossers. One cultural development that you will be hearing a lot more about is the fleshy replacement of all religious festivals, festivals that were originally pagan celebrations anyway. The traditional festival of Easter will be replaced by the far more appropriate ‘Steak and Blowjob’ day, the decreasingly popular Christmas is now ‘Xmas’, a day for having self-hating, ungratifying, sex with old flames. Pancake day is now the family friendly Freudian celebration ‘Oedipus Day’, an inter-relation free for all. Cousin-onGranny-on-Auntie-on-Dog-on-Sister-onBrother-on-Mother. Get with the times sicko.


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MUSIC

Review of Glastonbury 2007 Thorny Strawtree RE: Go to Glastonbury and take acid. Its great full stop. Arrived at Glastonbury, pitched up a tent, actually that’s a lie- I conveniently called my mate after he had pitched up the tent. While waiting for my mate looking very vacant in the Eagle Arms pub, I got offered pills by several blokes. Glastonbury started for me from that moment forth and proceeded along a similar vibe. What were my highlights I hear you ask? Rodrigo & Gabriela, absolutely amazing. But enough about the music the real highlights happen mostly around the Lost Vagueness Field.

Here I ‘danced’ to heavy metal in a chapel, ‘rode around’ in bumper cars as the sun came up and ‘chilled’ out in the tipi field whilst playing giant connect four at 7am. The lo-lights? Deciding in a moment of madness to leave Glastonbury on Sunday night to go to Manchester…whilst high on acid. Standing at the train station waiting for a train at 6am in the pissing rain is just not as fun as it sounds. Anyways, all in

I speak, breathe, live Glastonbury, if it was allowed I all

would definitely live at the festival all year round. So go.

Cocaine Breast-Milk Scandal Rafael LeFevre As Eugene Hutz, the street fighting, border jumping front-man of gypsypunk-rock group Gogol Bordello remarked during the throes of a sickeningly wild after show party “Our good old days my friend, they are today and tomorrow!” A little optimistic on this self-referential bastard’s part when he was capable of speaking the next day he croaked that his head felt like Hephaestus, the clumsy Olympian God of fire and anvils, was repairing a pressure cooker inside his skull - the essential message is still valid. Our Golden Years are now. We are the bright young things, the new Beautiful People. We are the future. Somewhere amongst us is the next Bob Dylan, Leonard Cohen, Charles Bukowski. Would they please fucking step forwards before somebody, the next Charles Manson, has go on a Top Ten based chainsaw rampage to

clear the ground of the talentless cunts taking up our valuable oxygen. We have the power to ensure that meaningful culture is given good and proper attention and that suicide bomb-inciting herpes holes, the next Spice Girls, Take Thats or West Lifes, are X-rayed at conception, so to speak. Never mind Nietzsche, they’re as good an argument for mass-sterilisation as any. Today, some incredibly exciting cultural developments are taking place; the Artwork by Chetan Kumar www.myspace.com/cheman86

problem is there’s too much choice. The Internet is to blame of course, how to filter the constant stream of crap and fish the precious nuggets out of the binary cesspool of shit. Information overload. Over three million artists on Myspace. Four billion songs on iTunes. Three songs for every man, woman and child in China. Forty years ago there was jack shit, that’s why nothing was taken for granted. Talking of that golden age of hemp-wearing, bright-eyed optimism, the

Beatles have a lot to answer for. By writing their own songs they set a deadly precedent, and should be held accountable for the entire oeuvre of every unspeakable singer-songwriter from the early sixties to today. Inconsiderate tossers. One cultural development that you will be hearing a lot more about is the fleshy replacement of all religious festivals, festivals that were originally pagan celebrations anyway. The traditional festival of Easter will be replaced by the far more appropriate ‘Steak and Blowjob’ day, the decreasingly popular Christmas is now ‘Xmas’, a day for having self-hating, ungratifying, sex with old flames. Pancake day is now the family friendly Freudian celebration ‘Oedipus Day’, an inter-relation free for all. Cousin-onGranny-on-Auntie-on-Dog-on-Sister-onBrother-on-Mother. Get with the times sicko.


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Replica Recommends This is what floats our musical boat at the moment people Disclaimer: The views expressed here are those of Music Editor Charlie Gilmour and are not necessarily those of Replica Magazine or Global Tat Productions. Charlie’s taste is alright on the whole but he has been known to come out with some real shit on occasion. The Pick of SXSW We skim off the best so you don’t have to; some of these are worth a little listen. http://www.myspace.com/florenceandthemachinemusic http://www.myspace.com/thesongsofjens http://www.myspace.com/theblackangels http://www.myspace.com/graveyardsongs http://www.myspace.com/monotonix http://www.myspace.com/chathamcountyline http://www.myspace.com/tackstheboydisaster http://www.myspace.com/fleetfoxes http://www.myspace.com/boniver Photo by Emma Dalzell www.emma-dalzell.co.uk Artwork (right) by Anna Chilton www.annachilton.co.uk

Laura Marling Unless you have an aversion to timelessly beautiful female voices and gentle arrangements, or have no ears, buy her album. Or download it illegally, whatever. It’s fucking good, we promise. Derek Meins Meins was originally signed to Rough Trade’s own label at the tender age of 14 as singer of the cult band Eastern Lane. Now most closely connected to alt-folk movement he is signed to 1965 Records, home of The View and The Metros, amongst others. His debut album comes out on the 27th May, we’re excited about it already. Check out his Myspace for more details, or if you’re in town he does free monthly gigs in London and Brighton. You’ll be hearing something more from this guy in future issues. Tinseltown And so onto the unsigned bands, we challenge you not to be affected by this group’s song ‘I’m a dog ’. Pure dirt vocals. Check them out at myspace.com/ilovetinseltown Melodica, Melody and Me Basically these guys are the one stop shop for all your folk-stepping needs. And you never knew you had any did you? Fool. myspace.com/mmmelodic


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Replica Recommends This is what floats our musical boat at the moment people Disclaimer: The views expressed here are those of Music Editor Charlie Gilmour and are not necessarily those of Replica Magazine or Global Tat Productions. Charlie’s taste is alright on the whole but he has been known to come out with some real shit on occasion. The Pick of SXSW We skim off the best so you don’t have to; some of these are worth a little listen. http://www.myspace.com/florenceandthemachinemusic http://www.myspace.com/thesongsofjens http://www.myspace.com/theblackangels http://www.myspace.com/graveyardsongs http://www.myspace.com/monotonix http://www.myspace.com/chathamcountyline http://www.myspace.com/tackstheboydisaster http://www.myspace.com/fleetfoxes http://www.myspace.com/boniver Photo by Emma Dalzell www.emma-dalzell.co.uk Artwork (right) by Anna Chilton www.annachilton.co.uk

Laura Marling Unless you have an aversion to timelessly beautiful female voices and gentle arrangements, or have no ears, buy her album. Or download it illegally, whatever. It’s fucking good, we promise. Derek Meins Meins was originally signed to Rough Trade’s own label at the tender age of 14 as singer of the cult band Eastern Lane. Now most closely connected to alt-folk movement he is signed to 1965 Records, home of The View and The Metros, amongst others. His debut album comes out on the 27th May, we’re excited about it already. Check out his Myspace for more details, or if you’re in town he does free monthly gigs in London and Brighton. You’ll be hearing something more from this guy in future issues. Tinseltown And so onto the unsigned bands, we challenge you not to be affected by this group’s song ‘I’m a dog ’. Pure dirt vocals. Check them out at myspace.com/ilovetinseltown Melodica, Melody and Me Basically these guys are the one stop shop for all your folk-stepping needs. And you never knew you had any did you? Fool. myspace.com/mmmelodic


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Union Chapel, Islington Charlie Gilmour Laura Marling, eighteen? Rubbish, the girls at my school are eighteen; I’m eighteen. She’s pulling a fast one if you ask me, like that 30 year old in France who managed to dress as a schoolboy and fooled everyone for a while.

Marling is clearly a lifebattered forty-something who’s been sipping at Olympia’s mythic font of youth; there is no other explanation for songs like Night Terror and Old Stone. How many eighteen year olds do you know who idolise Dylan, Judee Sill and Joni Mitchell, that spend their birthday working (ok, admittedly playing to a packed bar in Soho) rather than out celebrating the final passage to the world of adulthood? She’s

been living in the world of adults for years. Despite all the press she’s had recently, she still looked miserable. ‘Alas I Cannot Smile’ read one inevitable headline. However, I suspect the deadeyed ‘I’m going to garrotte myself with my guitar stings’ demeanour suits the nature of her songs. One of which, ‘Cross your Fingers’, muses on the constant presence of death in life (“sagging flesh and feet of crows”).

She does show a playful side howeverthe title track of her album ‘Alas I Cannot Swim’ was given an up-tempo make over, resembling, or perhaps directly stolen from, the Duelling Banjos scene in Deliverance. Sadly Marling did not slap her thighs and start barn dancing around the stage, in fact her lips barely flickered. Perhaps this wasn’t the venue, after all the Union Chapel is a house of the Lord by day, despite the fully stocked bar and smoking area. These I assume are not available during Sunday services or there would be as much as of an exodus then as there was during the two hours (!) of support before Marling came on. With very rare exceptions- for me it was seeing Marling support Devendra Banhart last year (again at a church, what is it with these New Folksters and the ministry?)- most people end up at the bar during the support, trying to drown out the poorly polished songs as well as their sorrows. Background image from Wikipedia. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:Alessi_Fl agship_St ore.jpg Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.2 or any later version published by the Free Software Foundation; with no Invariant Sections, no Front-Cover Texts, and no Back-Cover Texts.

Despite the excellent musicality shown by support group Mumford and Sons there doesn’t seem to be an instrument Marcus Mumford can’t play - this gig was no different. Marcus himself had a very off-putting onstage demeanour, as if he’s just soiled himself and doesn’t quite know what to do about it. The music itself was pleasant, but the subject matter of both his set and Johnny Flynn’s was far too similar, glazed with sixth-form superficiality. You get the feeling that these bands are writing about the same thing, except Laura manages to do it that much better. This gig was for the real fans. Those who parted with twenty quid for the Songbox, rather than just downloading it for free like normal people, got a free ticket to a show in London, Bristol, Glasgow or Manchester. Although Marling accompanied herself on an acoustic for her first song, she was soon joined by her a backing band (who she introduced by name) and a string quintet who she rather shamefacedly could only refer to as “the fiddlettes”. Her success doesn’t seem to have quite registered yet, “Hi, I’m Laura” she said shyly as she took to the stage. “No shit!” replied some wag in the audience. Marling went on to play the entirety of her brilliant, heart-breaking debut album but refused to play any of

herearly songs. Not even London Town or Man He Sings About Romance, the tracks that brought about her first initial success, were given an airing. Nor did she attempt to pull off her cover of Neil Young’s The Needle and the Damage Done, the B-side to her recent single Ghosts. She was perhaps intimidated by the knowledge that the great man himself was performing the same song a few stops south at the Apollo that very night. The brilliance of the performance was marred somewhat by the thought that Marling seems to be bowing to the incomprehensible whims of EMI. Apparently a key element of Guy Hand’s miracle cure is to pimp the artist brand for all its worth. Amongst other bizarre merchandise there were Laura Marling™ gumdrops- “A bitter sweet melody in every mouthful” grimaced the check-shirted sales man. Marling’s Joni Mitchell like locks have also been replaced by a far more stylish urchin cut, a worrying sign of things to come? Unless you’re the NME I don’t think haircut analysis will catch on as a model for divining the future artistic trajectory. Even so, with that voice, I feel that even if she choose to dive right into the ditch and do an album of shoe-gazing jazz-fusion trip hop, it would still be utterly enchanting.


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Union Chapel, Islington Charlie Gilmour Laura Marling, eighteen? Rubbish, the girls at my school are eighteen; I’m eighteen. She’s pulling a fast one if you ask me, like that 30 year old in France who managed to dress as a schoolboy and fooled everyone for a while.

Marling is clearly a lifebattered forty-something who’s been sipping at Olympia’s mythic font of youth; there is no other explanation for songs like Night Terror and Old Stone. How many eighteen year olds do you know who idolise Dylan, Judee Sill and Joni Mitchell, that spend their birthday working (ok, admittedly playing to a packed bar in Soho) rather than out celebrating the final passage to the world of adulthood? She’s

been living in the world of adults for years. Despite all the press she’s had recently, she still looked miserable. ‘Alas I Cannot Smile’ read one inevitable headline. However, I suspect the deadeyed ‘I’m going to garrotte myself with my guitar stings’ demeanour suits the nature of her songs. One of which, ‘Cross your Fingers’, muses on the constant presence of death in life (“sagging flesh and feet of crows”).

She does show a playful side howeverthe title track of her album ‘Alas I Cannot Swim’ was given an up-tempo make over, resembling, or perhaps directly stolen from, the Duelling Banjos scene in Deliverance. Sadly Marling did not slap her thighs and start barn dancing around the stage, in fact her lips barely flickered. Perhaps this wasn’t the venue, after all the Union Chapel is a house of the Lord by day, despite the fully stocked bar and smoking area. These I assume are not available during Sunday services or there would be as much as of an exodus then as there was during the two hours (!) of support before Marling came on. With very rare exceptions- for me it was seeing Marling support Devendra Banhart last year (again at a church, what is it with these New Folksters and the ministry?)- most people end up at the bar during the support, trying to drown out the poorly polished songs as well as their sorrows. Background image from Wikipedia. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:Alessi_Fl agship_St ore.jpg Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.2 or any later version published by the Free Software Foundation; with no Invariant Sections, no Front-Cover Texts, and no Back-Cover Texts.

Despite the excellent musicality shown by support group Mumford and Sons there doesn’t seem to be an instrument Marcus Mumford can’t play - this gig was no different. Marcus himself had a very off-putting onstage demeanour, as if he’s just soiled himself and doesn’t quite know what to do about it. The music itself was pleasant, but the subject matter of both his set and Johnny Flynn’s was far too similar, glazed with sixth-form superficiality. You get the feeling that these bands are writing about the same thing, except Laura manages to do it that much better. This gig was for the real fans. Those who parted with twenty quid for the Songbox, rather than just downloading it for free like normal people, got a free ticket to a show in London, Bristol, Glasgow or Manchester. Although Marling accompanied herself on an acoustic for her first song, she was soon joined by her a backing band (who she introduced by name) and a string quintet who she rather shamefacedly could only refer to as “the fiddlettes”. Her success doesn’t seem to have quite registered yet, “Hi, I’m Laura” she said shyly as she took to the stage. “No shit!” replied some wag in the audience. Marling went on to play the entirety of her brilliant, heart-breaking debut album but refused to play any of

herearly songs. Not even London Town or Man He Sings About Romance, the tracks that brought about her first initial success, were given an airing. Nor did she attempt to pull off her cover of Neil Young’s The Needle and the Damage Done, the B-side to her recent single Ghosts. She was perhaps intimidated by the knowledge that the great man himself was performing the same song a few stops south at the Apollo that very night. The brilliance of the performance was marred somewhat by the thought that Marling seems to be bowing to the incomprehensible whims of EMI. Apparently a key element of Guy Hand’s miracle cure is to pimp the artist brand for all its worth. Amongst other bizarre merchandise there were Laura Marling™ gumdrops- “A bitter sweet melody in every mouthful” grimaced the check-shirted sales man. Marling’s Joni Mitchell like locks have also been replaced by a far more stylish urchin cut, a worrying sign of things to come? Unless you’re the NME I don’t think haircut analysis will catch on as a model for divining the future artistic trajectory. Even so, with that voice, I feel that even if she choose to dive right into the ditch and do an album of shoe-gazing jazz-fusion trip hop, it would still be utterly enchanting.


XXXII

XXXIII

AGONY

Dear Uncle Wetlegs,

UNCLE WETLEGS

“Vanessa Feltz called, she wants her wig back”

This, Ladies and Gentlemen, is what a real man looks like. Here he is, the man himself, helping the needy, feeding the poor, and probably pissing in your pocket when you’re not looking.

Dear Uncle Wetlegs, My mothers drain and my boyfriend filled the pipes sulphuric acid.. that it is going and my family... do?

Dear Uncle Wetlegs, my legs are dry, what shall I do? Become a bloody comedian mate. Dear Uncle Wetlegs, I have been a bit confused lately and have been experiencing feelings of a prurient nature towards a member of my own family. They are getting harder and harder to suppress. I think (and hope) the feelings are mutual. What do you think I should do? What would/do you do in my position? You look like an Oedipusal kind of guy so I imagine you must have some liberal views on the subject?

(Just to clarify, it’s my sister, not my mum, you sick fuck). And just to clarify YOU sick fuck this is ‘An experiment in Collective Journalism’ not Jerry Springer in Collective Journalism. There is only one route for you my friend, that is to kill your sister and the rest of your family with an axe. Because its better to be an axe murderer than a sister fucker. Unless of course you are a hot girl in which case you and your sister should go into porn.

is blocked has now with I am scared to burn me What do I

Like all strong acids sulphuric acid can be hazardous when imbibed, therefore the use of acid should be supervised by a responsible, preferably sober, adult at all times. Luckily for you, drainage pipes are not usually connected to the water pipes of a house so you should survive it, although your boyfriend is clearly a dick for thinking acid unblocks drains. Dump the c***.

Idiot of the issue:

I do not often resort to agony uncles, but you're simply irresistible. My problem, you see, is that I'm helplessly, hopelessly attracted to you. The screen of my computer is sticky with the outpourings of my lovepump. My question is, what underwear have you got on? I bet you don't have any, do you, you dirty bugger? Go on, 'put me straight' Uncle Wetlegs. Yours sincerely, Nephew Dampbell Let me get this straight, you’re telling me that you’ve been wanking over me and you want to know what underwear I've got on? Frankly, it’s too late for anyone to put you straight my estranged reader. Let me put this to you as poetically as I can; my legs maybe wet but i’m not gay. I will not be answering your aforementioned question for that is a private matter between me and the lucky girl who’s sharing my four-poster.

“Hello ‘Uncle Wetlegs’, if indeed that is your real name. I see you are apparently an aunt as well as an uncle. How is this possible? Are you a gayer? Or did you shag your sister, or somefink?” Do you have any problems ? Let Uncle Wetlegs know: www.replicamag.co.uk/index_unclewetlegs.htm


XXXII

XXXIII

AGONY

Dear Uncle Wetlegs,

UNCLE WETLEGS

“Vanessa Feltz called, she wants her wig back”

This, Ladies and Gentlemen, is what a real man looks like. Here he is, the man himself, helping the needy, feeding the poor, and probably pissing in your pocket when you’re not looking.

Dear Uncle Wetlegs, My mothers drain and my boyfriend filled the pipes sulphuric acid.. that it is going and my family... do?

Dear Uncle Wetlegs, my legs are dry, what shall I do? Become a bloody comedian mate. Dear Uncle Wetlegs, I have been a bit confused lately and have been experiencing feelings of a prurient nature towards a member of my own family. They are getting harder and harder to suppress. I think (and hope) the feelings are mutual. What do you think I should do? What would/do you do in my position? You look like an Oedipusal kind of guy so I imagine you must have some liberal views on the subject?

(Just to clarify, it’s my sister, not my mum, you sick fuck). And just to clarify YOU sick fuck this is ‘An experiment in Collective Journalism’ not Jerry Springer in Collective Journalism. There is only one route for you my friend, that is to kill your sister and the rest of your family with an axe. Because its better to be an axe murderer than a sister fucker. Unless of course you are a hot girl in which case you and your sister should go into porn.

is blocked has now with I am scared to burn me What do I

Like all strong acids sulphuric acid can be hazardous when imbibed, therefore the use of acid should be supervised by a responsible, preferably sober, adult at all times. Luckily for you, drainage pipes are not usually connected to the water pipes of a house so you should survive it, although your boyfriend is clearly a dick for thinking acid unblocks drains. Dump the c***.

Idiot of the issue:

I do not often resort to agony uncles, but you're simply irresistible. My problem, you see, is that I'm helplessly, hopelessly attracted to you. The screen of my computer is sticky with the outpourings of my lovepump. My question is, what underwear have you got on? I bet you don't have any, do you, you dirty bugger? Go on, 'put me straight' Uncle Wetlegs. Yours sincerely, Nephew Dampbell Let me get this straight, you’re telling me that you’ve been wanking over me and you want to know what underwear I've got on? Frankly, it’s too late for anyone to put you straight my estranged reader. Let me put this to you as poetically as I can; my legs maybe wet but i’m not gay. I will not be answering your aforementioned question for that is a private matter between me and the lucky girl who’s sharing my four-poster.

“Hello ‘Uncle Wetlegs’, if indeed that is your real name. I see you are apparently an aunt as well as an uncle. How is this possible? Are you a gayer? Or did you shag your sister, or somefink?” Do you have any problems ? Let Uncle Wetlegs know: www.replicamag.co.uk/index_unclewetlegs.htm


XXXIIV

MISC

A Remembrance Sunday I’d rather forget Dan Pennington Allow me to recount to you, if you will, a little tale of bad taste banter which took a rather unfortunate twist. It’s Saturday night and, along with some fellow Leeds revellers, the evening’s events have centred mainly on moderate to heavy lash. Seven hours and several club ‘crash and burns’ later, it’s all back to the initial bevving site for a spot of dregs hunting. All remaining beer having been seen off, it’s high time yours truly finds a bed for the night. With no willing females in sight I take refuge on a deserved sofa. 10.30am and phone alarm number one gets missed. 10.40am, number two. 10.50am and lucky number three, as always, does the trick. I’m awake and pranging as to where I am and how to get to work in ten minutes. Dashing out the front door it starts coming back to me. Bearings gained, a quick sprint to the bus stop and its happy days. In my path lies a gang of OAP’s all in standard issue 3 piece suits. Struggling to understand their boggle I notice some are wearing medals and there’s even one dressed as a vicar. Then I notice the poppies and the monument

WE NEED CONTRIBUTORS

around which they’re all congregated. A quick check on my phone reveals the date: The 11 th day of the 11 th month... Remembrance Sunday! Sure enough the bell for 11am has just begun and with it so has the statuary 2 minutes silence. Still brimming with beer, my work obligations are put on hold momentarily as I approach the welcoming group with a warm heart, ready to pay my respects and feeling all the better for it. Two minutes observed, a “Cheers Vicar!” handshake later and I’m on the bus buzzing off being such a moral citizen. But something is dampening my buzz, an unnerving sensation that I’m being watched, stared at even. “Excuse me mate” a fellow stagecoach punter pipes up, “Are you on your way to work or something?” “Yes, as it goes”, my reply, “why?”. “Cos I don’t think your boss will see the funny side of what you’ve got written on your face, today of all days!” the joker retorts whilst holding up his lady friend’s make-up mirror to my face which reflects a large, black and unmistakably clear swastika imprinted callously on my forehead. “Cheers vicar” indeed!

THANK-YOU VERY MUCH TO EVERYONE WHO CONTRIBUTED TO THIS ISSUE.

“REPLICA NEEDS

YOU” Get off your arse and DO SOMETHING. Air your opinions. Get published. Start a riot (just make sure you tell us about it).

REPLICA MAGAZINE Combating apathy and boredom Nationwide.


XXXIIV

MISC

A Remembrance Sunday I’d rather forget Dan Pennington Allow me to recount to you, if you will, a little tale of bad taste banter which took a rather unfortunate twist. It’s Saturday night and, along with some fellow Leeds revellers, the evening’s events have centred mainly on moderate to heavy lash. Seven hours and several club ‘crash and burns’ later, it’s all back to the initial bevving site for a spot of dregs hunting. All remaining beer having been seen off, it’s high time yours truly finds a bed for the night. With no willing females in sight I take refuge on a deserved sofa. 10.30am and phone alarm number one gets missed. 10.40am, number two. 10.50am and lucky number three, as always, does the trick. I’m awake and pranging as to where I am and how to get to work in ten minutes. Dashing out the front door it starts coming back to me. Bearings gained, a quick sprint to the bus stop and its happy days. In my path lies a gang of OAP’s all in standard issue 3 piece suits. Struggling to understand their boggle I notice some are wearing medals and there’s even one dressed as a vicar. Then I notice the poppies and the monument

WE NEED CONTRIBUTORS

around which they’re all congregated. A quick check on my phone reveals the date: The 11 th day of the 11 th month... Remembrance Sunday! Sure enough the bell for 11am has just begun and with it so has the statuary 2 minutes silence. Still brimming with beer, my work obligations are put on hold momentarily as I approach the welcoming group with a warm heart, ready to pay my respects and feeling all the better for it. Two minutes observed, a “Cheers Vicar!” handshake later and I’m on the bus buzzing off being such a moral citizen. But something is dampening my buzz, an unnerving sensation that I’m being watched, stared at even. “Excuse me mate” a fellow stagecoach punter pipes up, “Are you on your way to work or something?” “Yes, as it goes”, my reply, “why?”. “Cos I don’t think your boss will see the funny side of what you’ve got written on your face, today of all days!” the joker retorts whilst holding up his lady friend’s make-up mirror to my face which reflects a large, black and unmistakably clear swastika imprinted callously on my forehead. “Cheers vicar” indeed!

THANK-YOU VERY MUCH TO EVERYONE WHO CONTRIBUTED TO THIS ISSUE.

“REPLICA NEEDS

YOU” Get off your arse and DO SOMETHING. Air your opinions. Get published. Start a riot (just make sure you tell us about it).

REPLICA MAGAZINE Combating apathy and boredom Nationwide.


End.

Replica Magazine Issue I  

The first edition of Replica Magazine. The start of collective journalism. Oh yes.

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