albums:blur new order, and a timely warning about the kellySci bookthe informers - bret easton ellis feature:endingScke o and beginnings - two old hands say how it was for them feeding:flaming woks & steaming firepots.chd filmibravehearteremy &J the baitâ„˘, gig:ash - laZ^ & goya dance^ main:newcomers guide to the fair^ the modern mr fogg: cairo hypochondria, singlesic ;
lem, chris and. the norfolk man â€˘
tern, chris, and the norfolk man -
z: There's no doubt about it: going to a whole White. And I met a very lovely girl called string of raucous social events with a bunch of Annette who didn't like the music either, and total strangers is simply very stressful. You are who drank Theakston's too, and we had both convinced they will leave you lonely and friendless for three years if you balls it up. Why else does everyone spend theirfirstweek of university utterly rat-arsed? Don't try and persuade me that we endure the expense and the hangovers for any other reason than we simply wouldn't make it to the dance floor otherwise. My own personalfreshers'week trauma came right at the very start: the first person I met invited me to a 'Shorts and Shades' party (uggh. I shudder at the very thought). I could think of few things I would like to do less on a very cold October evening with a vet student from Brighton I had only just met, but I didn't feel I had a great deal of choice. Problem was, none of those handy handbooks and newspaper supplements on how to be a cool fresher had catered for the problems people like me had. No one told me that themed freshers' parties were a figment in the creativity of bored ents managers. In my naivity I failed to realise that 'shorts and shades' actually meant 'the same jeans and t-shirt again'. And I didn't actually pack any shorts, what with it being about 20 degrees below the appropriate temperature. So I borrowed a pair off my next door neighbour- a particularly tasteful lime green pair of Bermudas, if I recall- and happily trotted off, been rejected from the same college in utterly unaware of how foolish I was going to Cambridge. Well, basically we had so much in feel for the next couple of hours. Well, perhaps common! Later, we sat out on the steps and I should have realised that flip-flops weren't wondered if the UN were ever really going to do going to be very practical on a dance floor. And anything about Bosnia, and whether Jo Brand I suspect the zinc sunscreen stripes might have was actually funny. been a mistake as well. I never saw her again. That was the first time I ever had Diamond
he vomit was everywhere. It splattered the carpet in huge pools
one shoulder riding high and my body leaning slighdy forward. Somehow this seemed to make the effects of locomotion almost bearable. So hunched and shuffling, I made my way down Uxbridge road Even then it was ground into the beddothes and progress was slow, and any sudden movement could have had me retdaing right there. Having spent a year mattress. Handprints of it marked the walls. It was all in Shepherd's Bush I still hadn't got to grips with it a sickening red colour, tainting every surface in the properly. It was not that it was a bad area, it was just room. It looked like blood, and my first thought was that there was nothing there, good or bad, to make it that I must have suffered some serious internal haemworth while. It was a void, a grim cultural wasteland. orrhaging. I'd have been shocked by that, except my Nothing was there, except houses and roads, houses brain was just too blasted to be capable of caring. I just and roads. Uxbridge road itself was a monotony of stared at the bloody mess and waited for a few sec- kebab shops and shabby newsagents, of pubs inhabitonds. At that point I did not feel bad, but I was just ed by a few desultory Irishmen. That day however, too numb to do anything. M y watch said that it was walking down that road with the mother of all hangbefore seven, and I remembered that I had been plan- overs, a hangover so bad that my entire consciousness ning to go to the doctor so was numb with denial, I saw the area in a new light. that he could check out my Suddenly it all made sense. Suddenly understood it. I j. ÂŁ i | irritating throat infection. realised it was unsurprising that I had never appreciIrritating because I couldn't ated it before, because Shepherd's Bush could only be understood when egregiously hung over. A l l the oke I h d t o s e t u p e a r l y grime, all the bland poverty began to make sense. The c ' because at Imperial you can shabby dereliction sparkled with a desolate joie de either wait three weeks for vivre. Looking around, I began to see for the first time 1 j . an appointment or you can the beauty which had always lain there. I admired the shop fronts, I studied the billboards and I was temptg 1 ciimc, which ed to smile at the locals. O f course, a smile was means getting there before beyond me at the time. Eventually, I made it to the half-eight in the morning. tube station for the worst ride of my life. Now that I Hving in the grim wilds of Shepherd's Bush, I had to was more awake, the pain and nausea were catching allow at least an hours travelling time, plus time to get me full on, and unexpected movement was not exactup, wash and have breakfast. So I had woken up at ly pleasant. I just sat therein another version of my this unsighdy hour, with a hangover so monumental clutching, hunched posture, and tried to blank out that I did not even feel anything, at least not yet. I just everything around me. The smells were the worst, knew that I couldn't deal with that bloody vomit. M y because they were hard to ignore. But the movement, state was so far beyond redemption that I had got up, the shaking, was also doing its best to stir up my illhad a shower and downed a bowl of cornflakes before ness. I held onto myself, feeling frail and collapsed, I was conscious enough to deduce that there was no and made it to King's Cross. That was where the tale way I would make it to the doctor's in one piece. really ends. Sitting on the grimy concrete of the platSome litde voice was telling my that I should just go form I managed to force a strawberry milkshake back to bed. It seemed like a good idea. So I went down my throat. It was all I could handle, and even back up to my apocalyptic room and curled up then it took me half an hour to finish. But I sat there amongst the pools of bloody vomit and blanked out and realised, as I had done the previous night, that for a few hours. But I remembered that I was also sup- three years of my life had just finished. All the efforts, posed to be going to the opticians that day. When I all the pain and hardship, all the euphoria, all had woke up the second time the nausea was catching up reached its final aim. I had spent three years being haswith me. Any movement caused my stomach great sled by deadlines and exams,fightingmy way through perturbation; it wasn't painful, it just was on the verge wads of coursework and attempting to listen to lecof going into spasm at any moment. Dizziness accom- turers. Three years spent in the weird subculture of panied any action, and thoughts moved at about two Mech Eng, with its corridors and unknown staff miles an hour. I took the opportunity to run through members. Three years learning. It was not time to be the events of the previous day. The ending of the regretted, it just begged to be understood. None of it degree, the diinese meal, the celebratory drinks, the really made sense at that point; everything which had vodka, the red wine. I realised that the red wine seemed so real and important two days ago when explained the colour of the vomit. I was too far gone struggling to meet the final, monumental deadline at that moment to feel relieved. So that's what hap- now seemed completely abstract. I had expected it to pens when you finish a degree, I thought mutely. I be an experience, and it was. I had expected it to lead wondered vauguely how I had managed to get home, my life in strange directions, and it had. I just never but the blanks in my memory didn't seem all that would have thought that the day after the end of it all important to me. I had a train to catch, after all. For I would be here, attempting to quell a sick stomach my sins, I had bought my contact lenses back home in with a strawberry milkshake and trying to avoid thinkCambridge,and that meant a walk, a ride on the tube ing about the fact that when I got back I would have and an hour on the train to make my appointment. to clean the vomit off my room. And all in a state in which even standing up was a dangerous move. I dosed the door on the vomit and marched out of the house, holding my nausea in check. Walking involved adopting a strange hunched posture with my arms firmly folded across my chest,
1 lie ending Ot the degree, the hineser " meal... the VOdka, 1492 students
uie reo. wine
o r j e n
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O N L Y
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fRITE [AGAEINES, 1S,& T0^C$tGO|pS AT T H E l i E A i t f I p F m M P U S 1
111)0 A p t i l S n o i% II lOTechtiobyte?, 1145 Short JSfc^Sttoek 1230 Le' el 3 l p m Shut down to B B C 1 (One O'clock News & Neigbours) 2pm Level 3 Live! I ui'.\da> 930 Pop goes 89 i O S O W l u t W t o l h i B j f Idea
1250 Pipeline 2pm Level * Live!
I0jn What Hie B l f fdea •'•III?: ' -':^:fyy:'^^¥k ' tt00 Inside Abbey Rd . 1124 The Loo i ids I H i 11 Unifier » 1'icslwr* Guide 1200 L i ve *95 •12if Short Sharp Shock 1230 Illicit Entrance 1250 Pipeline l p m Shutdown (see Mon) iii 2pm International night Friday 930 Pop Goes'94 11)30 What Was The B i g Idea Then? rSOOSpJefSoc :
1200 Live '95 :
1230 Wash And Go 1245 Short Sharp Shock l p m Shutdown (see Mon) 2pm Grease :. . 4 pm Pop Goes '91 Thursday
Monday 930 Hop goes '88 1030 What U j - , The B i g Idea
. II 1200 The Report 1230 I .eve! 3 1 pm Shutdown (see Mon) 2pm Best Of Fresher's Week 3pm Malasian Night 5pm Pop Goes '95
tine to ]ack*fip*$S-fij8d(asil-. will be iistributed at Fresher's Fair. A l l times subject to change without i]o«<^;:£«alS«S may settl. in transit. stoic@ic, ring x48104 for fun, fun, fun.
oming from a smalltown
£ 120 on beer
we go on a Mediterranean cruise - for the first time I could have!
At the time local elections were coming up and the liberal Democrats had a real chance of throwing the in rural Sussex, IC was completely Tories out of office. Last year they missed the chance different. Right from the start my by 7 votes! We were the largest body in Kensington preconceptions were challenged The people seemed likely to vote against them and we had the power to nice, a bizarre mix of personalities, interests and per- make a difference. I was proud to be in Imperial. ceptions. Freshers' week was a time when you could I was talking to a friend about the political system in go up to a complete stranger, start talking and not America and how they affected our lives here. She seem sad and desperate. Most of the week I would- smiled a smile. One that invoked a secret knowledge. n't have cared if they had turned me down anyway. I One that spoke of a time lost or discarded for her. She turned her head away and got on with the work she spent about £ 1 2 0 on beer that week. was doing. She knew that I would stop questioning I was cooking some food and part of the ring on the cooker glowed brighter when it was on. I wondered eventually. The free part of my mind would die and aloud why it would do that. Someone preparing in its place duty graduating and grades would take its Kellogg's frosties absent mindedly explained it in place. I would give myself up to the work for these terms of currents and cross-sectional areas. It seemed thoughts could not be graded and therefore had no okay to be intellectual. Everyone I met was doing a value. She was happy to give up questioning for the similar sort of subject, and for thefirsttime I didn't sake of graduating; that was the culture there. Nice, feel like apologising for what I did. Everyone was in people conform to the lowest common denominator the same boat and whether what I did was cool or not intellectually. The department is mostly staffed by wasn't questioned. It was exciting to be in London these people now. Eighties' children getting on in life and something was happening all the time. I was all to promote their own self interest. optimism for the year ahead, but after thefirstweek Looking back I was lucky being a fresher was good. It things changed. Everyone was always working; no- allowed me to be someone I had not been before. one seemed to complain, but I assumed it was Students coming up now see debt before joie de vivre. The government has seen to creating an atmosFreshers' enthusiasm. phere of materialism. The myth of spontaneity is Having money for the first time was the best part. I afforded only to those with money, fast cars and could experiment and try new things. I bought books mobile phones. Imperial is good in that if you want to on cultural studies, visited art galleries and went to the excel in a certain interest you can. Opera. I had a student loan and someone suggested
Britain's Best Comedy Comes To leu. Plus The Chance To Win £1000! Wolcome to Imperial College Union,* the 1995/6 Newcastle Brown Ale Comedy Network, which kicks on on Friday Oct. 13th. The Network brings you top a i ^ s i | | Is Man Parker Harry Hill Jim Tavare, & Lee & Herring at spectal prft Sponsorship from N ^ ^ ^ p ^ ^ ^ ^ t t U w i n l y is there loads of giveaways, but the first SO ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ p bottle of Newcastle Brown. Plus if you see yourself as anispiring comic, you can take part in the Open Mic award, Europe's largest eometty talent search. See Mark Home for more details. % € So, every second Friday enjoy the rising stars of comedy, along with some of the top acts, all for lust £2.50.
For more information, watch out for posters or contact Mark, the Events Manager.
Imperial College Computer Sales Level 4, Mechanical Engineering Building Exhibition Road, London SW7 2BX : : : F o r y o u r
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o n y o u c o m p u t i n g
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=>Software at competitive prices through Microsoft Select until December 1995 including Microsoft Word for Windows, Excel & Office for Windows. =>3.5" HD Floppy disks reduced from £5.99 to £4 for a box of 10 until 31st October with this advertisement. ^Discounted computer hardware including Hewlett Packard, Apple & Research Machines. For e.g. HP Deskjet £258.08 inc VAT =^>Flexi cards, labels and transparencies. =>Computer repair services =>and much more ...
Open from 9.30 am to 4.30 pm - Monday to Friday
A G E N T S
Freshers' Fair '95 the time: Tuesday afternoon the place: pretty much everywhere
A N D
M W I J
n o o k - s H e p . fi e i p sui
A C C Phones - Foyer, Union Ground Floor African Caribbean Society - Great Hall Amateur Radio - Union Top Floor Arts Appreciation - Main Dining Hall Association Football (men) - Main Dining Hall Association Football (women) - Queens Lawn ATD Fourth World - Union Dining Hall Audio Society - Union Dining Hall Badminton Club - Main Dining Hall Barclays Bank - Ante Room Barbican Centre - Ante Room Basketball Club - Main Dining Room Beatwax - Ante Room Billiards & Snooker - Union Lounge Board Sailing Club - Queens Lawn Boat Club - Queens Lawn BUNAC - Main Dining Hall
Ruqgr y -
Campus Travel - Main Dining Hall Canoe Club - Beit Quad Catholic Society - Union "Dining Hall Caving Club - Beit Quad Chess Club - Main Dining Hall Chinese Society - Great Hall Choir - Union Concert Hall Christian Union - Queens Lawn Christian Student Action - Union Dining Hall CIEE - Ante Room ICU Cinema - Union Concert Hall Circus Skills Society - Queens Lawn City & Guilds College Union - Queens Lawn Club UK - Ante Room College Bag Distribution - Main Dining Hall Conservative Society - Union Dining Hall Cricket Club -Main Dining Hall Cross Country Club - Main Dining Hall C S S A - G r e a t Hall Cypriot Society - Great Hall
VoLUfBAlL — .
Dance Club - Main Dining Hall DramSoc - Union Concert Hall Endsleigh Insurance - Ante Room European Youth Society - Union Lounge Ents - Union Lounge
FELIX - Beit Quad Fencing Club - Union Gym Film Society - Union Lounge Finance Society - Ground Floor Foyer, Sherfield Fitness Club - Main Dining Hall Free Weights - Queens Lawn Fresh Direction - Ante Room Gliding Club - Queens Lawn Go Club - Union Lounge Golf Club - Queens Lawn Guardian - Ante Room Guilds Hover Club - Queens Lawn Guilds Karting Club - Queens Lawn Guilds Motor Club - Queens Lawn Hang-Gliding Club &. Para-Gliding Clubs - Queens Lawn Hellenic Society - Great Hall Hockey Club - Queens Lawn
HALL 1" FLO0K- UMlOrJ BLQ
DIN IN £j
IC Chaplains - Union Dining Hall IC Computer Sales - Main Dining Hall IC Radio - Queens Lawn ICCAG - Union Lounge ICSF - Union Concert Hall IC Sports Centre - Main Dining Hall Indian Society - Great Hall Industrial Society - Main Dining Hall IQ - Union Lounge Institute of Contemporary Arts - Ante Room International Tamil - Great Hall Iranian Society - Great Hall Islamic Society - Main Dining Hall
II IIIIIIIIIIIIIIII illlilllllllllllllllllHIIIHI
own mnuiniiiiiiiiriiiiiiii ESTRA BIG Soe
,. . .,
Japan Society - Great Hall Jazz & Rock Society - Union Second Floor Landing Jazz Big Band - Union Concert Hall Jazz Dance - Main Dining Hall Jewish Society - Union Dining Hall Judo Society - Union Gym KCOFOS - Great Hall Labour Society - Union Dining Hall Lawn Tennis - Queens Lawn Lebanese Society - Great Hall Leonardo Society - Main Dining Hall Lloyds Bank - Ante Room
Malaysian Society - Great Hall Methodist Society -Union Dining Hall Micro Computer Club - Union Concert Hall Mountaineering Club - Queens Lawn Natwest Bank - Ante Room Netball Club - Main Dining Hall Nordic Subscriptions - Ante Room Officers Training Corps - Main Dining Hall OpSoc - Union Concert Hall Orchestra - Union Concert Hall Orienteering Club - Main Dining Hall Overseas Committee - Great Hall Oxfam - Union Dining Hall Parachute Club - Main Dining Hall Photographic Society - Union Lounge Pimlico Connection - Main Dining Hall Radio Modellers - Queens Lawn Radio Rentals - Ante Room Rag - Union Lounge Riding Club - Main Dining Hall Rollerblading Club - Queens Lawn Rifle & Pistol Club - Union Concert Hall Royal Royal Royal Royal
College of Science Union - Queens Lawn Naval Unit - Main Dining Hall School of Mines Football - Main Dining Hall School of Mines Hockey - Queens Lawn
Royal School of Mines Union - Queens Lawn Royal School of Mines Motor Club - Queens Lawn Rugby Club - Beit Quad Sailing Club - Queens Lawn SciTech - Main Dining Hall Scout & Guide Club - Beit Quad Shotokai Karate Club - Union Lounge Sikh Society- Great Hall Singapore Society - Great Hall Ski Club - Main Dining Hall Socrates Society - Main Dining Hall Spanish Society - Great Hall Sports Motorcycling Club - Queens Lawn Squash Club - Main Dining Hall STA Travel - Ground Floor Foyer, Sherfield Stoic - Queens Lawn Survival International - Union Dining Hall Swimming / Water Polo Club - Main Dining Hall Table Tennis Club - Union Gym Taiwan Society - Great Hall Ten Pin Bowling Club - Main Dining HA11 Tesco - Ante Room
U N I O N /
H A L L
B L Q
Thai Society - Great Hall Third World First - Union Dining Hall Time Out - Main Dining Hall Transcendental Meditation Society - Union Dining Hall Turkish Society - Great Hall U L U Nightline - Union Lounge Underwater Club - Beit Quad Union Adviser - Main Dining Hall University of London Union - Union First Floor University of London Air Squadron - Main Dining Hall University of London Naval Unit - Main Dining Hall Volleyball Club - Beit Quad Wargames Society - Union Dining Hall Welsh Society - Great Hall Wine Tasting Society - Union Lounge Women's Rugby - Beit Quad Wu Shu Kwan Kung Fu Club - Union Gym Yacht Club - Main Dining Hall Y H A - Main Dining Hall Yoga Society - Union Gym
e Forget Britpop - Here comes Swedepop! If you thought the land of Volvos could only produce the Satan spawned music of Roxette then idiink again. Sugar sweet vocals and a top-notch cover of the Lizzy classic 'The Boys are back in town'. Brilliant. p Jarvis we love you. Sheffields finest (unless you count Joe Cocker, Human League or Def Leppard) release of a rather good new single.
s Forget Blur and Oasis, the undoubted Single of the Week is from this up and coming band. This Nottingham based band have taken many influences and effortlessly mixed them into a superb debut single. It will be huge, buy it now. y Help! No! After a two year absence is this really the best they could do? (Not that we liked them before anyway] g Typically Indie sound, however nothing really special. This doesn't mean it's bad, just nothing
l So highly rated that the CD refused to play on a variety of different CD players. Was this an indication of the music? We'll never know.
a This is actually quite good. Sounds somewhat like the Manic Street Preachers but not enough to ruin it.
s r Umm. Not really our cup of tea. At one point Not as good as Daydreamer, but nice 'Na Na this sounds quite a lot like a Care in the Com-mNa's' anyway. unity patient starting to play a synthesiser.
book: the informers
been the clinical amorality and black sarcasm with which he carves, slices and exposes the totems of post-modernity. Indeed at the heart of the novel lurk a brood of vampires - the irony After the killing ground of Bret Easton Ellis' last being that such is the state of play in LA no-body notorious novel, American Psycho, The Informersnotices. They're just a wild and weird bunch of see him retxrrning to the scene of fascination; the guys. It's been well said that in the world of shifting low-life at the heart of Los Angeles. Eighties dysfunctionalism, Brett Easton Ellis is His characters are all fragmented; we follow Douglas Coupland's (author of Generation X their dirty lives for a chapter at most before the and Life after God fame) demonic alter-ego. channels get switched. Yeah, on the screen of Whereas Coupland public access, Ellis takes us seeks to save his person surfing in the city of world of sad devils and what do we see? slackers and A land flowing with wasters, Ellis , tranquilisers, helped stands ready to down with chug of orange judge the spirit of juice and a snort of the white e m p t y snuff. People too weary to materialism. The think, too selfish to care, too Informers is a rich to mind. None of them blast from an are friendly, most of them are angry god and all wasted, all of them are the more compdamned. Money, sex and elling for it. Read family are all screwed but it as revelation. hey, everyone's beautiful and the sun's shining (totally man!). Which could make for a depressing and dull book but Ellis' strength has always
- bret easton eUi$»
the informers: '.•/it •.hih.ijv,;
heart of Los Angeles"
albums: quick round up s e
g d from e s A f
. k s o . r t e d
t h y
, s s
. r o
r , f
gig: ash - laZ e h d d y d ? u ,
I e e . h d e l g
p s r
' force. y r y e
â€˘gig:goya dress - aoopmatthe Garage. Recently having become my regular haunt I strolled up to the shorter queue at the Garage door: the guest list. Ah, the vanity of music-joumalism. Ahead of me stood two eager young ziners/Goyettes: Goyette 1: "...Last time I saw them they were amazing!" Goyette 2: "Yeah especially Valentino, I just love that song...Goya dress are brilliant". I assure you that even a most restrained Dr Humbert could not have muffled the smile that crept to my lips. Passing the brief identity crisis that was the guest-list I took up my regular spot on the floor: just behind the manic moshers, though significandy in front of the real girns/oldgeezers. Was it desperate shadow of things to come? The threesome bounced on to stage with a chest thumping number, I forget which, and
feeding:tiger lil's flaming woks and steaming iirepots restaurant I was rather put off char-on-the-spot Chinese restaurants the time we went to celebrate my brother's graduation and he ended up being threatened by the bar manager with a bottle of
Budvar. Well, I know it said on the menu that 10% service was compulsory for parties over six, but there was no need for him to leap over the bar and grab the poor boy by the collar. Besides, we hadn't had any service anyway. But that's another story, and you're hardly likely to get bottled by the staff in 's. "Taking its inspiration from the East", this is ecoeating for the 90's: the furniture is made from reclaimed railway sleepers and telegraph poles. But perhaps making the toilet door handles out of stones was taking the rustic theme to the point of extreme. Alan's really into the ying and yang thing' my host informed me. Well, I'd be more inclined to give Alan a bit of credit and say that the man who has set up a dozen successful
soon manage to swirl me away into their highlands. At times deadly fast, at times sweedy slow, even managing to seamlessly weave a piano into the works. "What about Valentino?" shouted Goyette 1 (2?). "Valentino? We did that last time", came the reply. "Yeah Yeah! We want Valentino", they chorused. "Naah were not doing that", she giggled at the adoration. After a few more exchanges and regrettable promises, Goya dress rode on leaving their entourage crying for more. The elusive lover left a mystery. Musically Goya dress are their own: supple beautiful voices wrapped around grungy guitars, laced with occasional female harmonies. Though the two-girl one-guy line up may seem to be an appealing sales feature for the big labels, Goya dress are worth more than the usual indie-darlings. Watch out for the new ep Ruby out now.
restaurants in recent years is into the money making sort of thing. And it seems to be working: Tiger Lil's was full by 8:30, you would be well advised to book. There's an interesting and varied selection of raw materials laid out - from beef, chicken and tofu to Japanese seaweed, cloud ear fungus, and something called shooting pulses, which seemed rather more like a Reservoir Dogs script direction than a foodstuff. You collect your bowls of meat and veg and give to one of the rather intimidating looking gentlemen behind the counter, who stir fry the lot over three-foot flames on up-tumed oil drums. Apparently, the cooks have 2nd Dan Karate belts. They did look pretty fierce, too, behind the 3 foot flames leaping toward the replanted rainforest ceiling. Apparently they do this by the roadside in Northern China on a regular basis. It's an entertaining spectator sport,and the result is remarkably tasty. Not exactly a subtle blend of flavours, but I guess if the black bean sauce is good enough, it doesn't particularly matter that it overpowers everything else. Even better was the 'steaming firepot' - a strange contraption that gets plugged into a bunsen burner style gas outlet in the middle of your table. Into it goes the same bowl-full of raw stuff, left to simmer in stock for a while, and yielding a really tasty, if slightly soggy soupy stuff. There's an unlimited supply of noodles and rice to go with it. I had caramelised fruit with sesame seeds for pudding, because it sounded rather wierd. It was delicious. This place is fun: it's a pity the largest table seats only eight - it would be a great place to go for a big group celebration.
son, avengence, love, hate,fighting,princesses, Cambridge has a new leviathan. A glisten- rape, more avengence, betrayal and hundreds of ing olifaunt eight screen warner, complete with marauding celts baring their all. There are severpiercing little lights, ever upward escalators andal battle scenes which are surprisingly violent. oh-so realistic trattorias. The sort of place you would be sure to avoid on your way to the Arts Cinema. Unless you'd had a few. Or perhaps you'd had more than a few, it is kicking out time and marillion is playing at the mmm-.. only decent venue. So, the scene is set, and these are the parameters within which I experienced Mel Gibson's own leviathan 1 0 - braveheart. I was pleasantly surprised, or at least partly surprised.
celluloid guide: thi v.t ii, n 0426 914666 , 4 1 .45,
oV;o«. • <;.•<'
The film is an impressive wartime saga based in Scotland. Of course, it boasts a heroic character, William Wallace, who although suffering from a Not the despicable and gratuitous glasses-staytypically tragic love affair, avenging his father's on-the-blown-out-brain joke gore, but honest, death, rousing a peasant army, shouting 'free- real suffering. The word is gritty. dom' frequentiy andridinga lot of horses, does The basic story is one man raising an army to have an interesting macabre side. In several overthrow the oppressive English, and, despite scenes he reveals a disturbing blood thirst, prob-internal conflicts, does amazingly well. The film ably due to a mass slaughter he witnessed as a is claimed to be historically accurate, but I honchild, that compares closely to the cruelty of the estiy don't know if this is true. architypal enemy figure King Edward the It does drag on a bit, though, and tends to have Wrongshanks in the execution scene. you shuffling in your insubstantial sweaty plastic Although thefilmsuffers form rather typecast seat wondering what to do with your legs. The roles, it can't be knocked for action. It has trea- Arts Cinema, on the other hand...
film: l'appat (the bait)
These characters are not hardened crimiSome dreams need money, if you can't earn it nals at the start of thefilm- Nathalie and Eric steal it. The Bait is based on a real life crime both coming from stable homes. It is their spree involving three adults in France from the naivety that draws them to murder, enhanced early 1980's, that apparently disturbed the by Eric and Bmno's conditioning from watching whole of France, well that's what they said 'violent'films.Eric undoubtedly has power over about Natural Bom Killers, but no-one knew Nathalie and Bruno the dream they follow is much about that until the film came out. Erics and not their own. Nathalie follows Eric The dream was to open a chain of clothing because of his charm while Bruno follows this boutiques in America, however there is a prob-fool in the hopes Eric willfindhim a girl like lem, since Eric (Oliver Siturk] has calculated 10 Nathalie. Like a cult leader he will never be able million Francs will be needed to start it up. Howto deliver. do they get the money? Well Nathalie (Marie The events shook France due to the vioGillain) has an address book with the names of lence of the real life murders, The Bait does not business men and other supposedly wealthy show the acts but you do hear the cries of the men. Her flirty nature allowing those men to victims through closed doors. The whole film's become targets of her address book. Together expression is totally changed by only hearing the with Bruno (Bruno Putzulu), Eric's slow side murders taking place, it avoids being gory and kick, they produce a plan that will in theory getblood thirsty and so allows the viewer to imagtheir 10 million Francs.The plan: use Nathalie as ine more. the bait; lure these men into there homes; Since thefilmfollows their lives closely, Nathalie then lets Eric and Bruno into the house from evolution to execution, very little seems to to pillage. Sounds plausible but these business happen in thefilm.It is like following a convermen don't have wall safes in their houses. Eachsation where two people are talking but end up attempt goes wrong, and to cover their track talking about nothing of very much importance. they resort to murder. Really for all those Francophiles out there.
y; s ::i
August 2nd :
2 Paledrine antimalarials [proguanil hydrochlo-
2 Paledrine anti-malarials, 2 Avloclor anti-malarials (chlorcxjuine phosphate), 8 Nurofen (perhaps a bit much), 1 erythromycin (massive scarlet tablet. Fells like I'm swallowing nuclear fallout, not antibiotic.)
ride), 4 Nurofen Wake up on the morning I'm heading off into the unknown with a storming fever and a throat that feels like I've spent several hours eating sandpaper. Spend 1 Vi hours waiting in the clinic for the doctor to tell me I've got flu, and to take a couple of paracetamol and go back to bed. I try and explain that this remedy isn't entirely compatible with catching a flight to Cairo in five hours, so he writes me a prescription, and then says that it probably won't work because my ailment is viral. Wonder how he can possibly work this out by massaging the underside of my ears and shining a torch in my mouth. A m particularly unimpressed when hey, he adds that I'll 'probably get something of an upset tummy' from taking them. There's something particularly sick about travelling to Egypt and then self-inducing bowel disorders. Anyway, we make it as far as Cairo airport without further incident, and launch into bartering for a taxi with great vigour. We leel proud when we Iinally.settle on a fare that we '' think is reasonable but our driver is indignant, and seems hell-bent to make our journey as - " V traumatic as possible as recompense. Rather than pay the paltry airport parking fee he bribes a security guard to spend several minutes unlocking bolts arid chains to let us out die back? exit. Unfortunately the policeman directing traffic outside catches sight ol Ahmed's indiscretion, and refuses to give our law priority until he's been dipped a few piastres as well. The next chunk of the journey involves being driven at break-neck speed through unpaved unlit back streets as our driver attempts to find a bus to take his cousin to Alexandria. We're abandoned in an all night fruit and vegetable market for a while, and when Ahmed finally returns we remind him gently that we're paying him a large sum to drive us to Zamalek? Never mind, he says, God willing we will get to our hotel before too long. It is a rather disconcerting feature of this place that even , c
the simplest of requests is met with a reminder that your best intentions might not be part of the Almighty's Great Plan.
s : four 7:30 am Wake up feeling jolly. It's not really too unbearably hot, and besides, I don't feel that ill anymore. Completely fail to appreciate that lying on a bed stock still with a fan on early in the morning does not give a fair indication of the heat of Cairo in August. 10:00 am Spend quite sometime negotiating the civil service building to sort out paperwork, but it falls into the amusing-Michael-Palinesquecultural-experience category so don't really mind. Still fairly feverish, but the outside temperature isl just about below body heat. Simon decides we are going of I to explore old Islamic Cairo. id 2 noon Saladin mosque. Decidely impressive building, apparently put up for Muhammed Ali. Presumably dtis is a different chap from the :
one who boxes. 1:30 p n Sultan I Iussein mosque. Heat getting lairly oppressive. A m moved to profound thoughts at the sight of locals lying resting round the mosque. Seems to me that the symbolism of the area ol quiet coolness to escape the heat of the midday sun is particularly strong when considering the sanctity of the place of worship. Holy thoughts are ruined when one of them gets up to piss in the ritual fountain. First occurs to me that I'd really rather be in bed, but I dismiss the thought immediately. 2:15 pm Rifai mosque. Apparently the Shah of Iran's tomb is here. I care far less than I feel I ought to. Climb up a 100 feet of crumbling minaret steps to get a better view of the steaming qmgrnire that is Cairo in August. 4 pm Pass four dead dogs lying in a pile of rubbish on the way to Ibn Ttilun mosque. Comment to Simon that lying on your back with your legs in the air and your teeth bared whilst foaming at the mouth mustn't be a particularly nice way to die. He informs me that rabies is endemic in Egypt with the air of someone who is just too cool to waste valuable time worrying about scary fatal diseases. I sit in a corner of the mosque ckeaming of a holiday in Oslo while he examines the Koranic text carved on 2km of sycamore panelling round the walls. 11 pm Dismiss Norway: they don't speak English there. Fall asleep fantasising about the holiday you could have in Scotland on what it costs to spend a month in the Middle East.
Cairo: mosques, bribery, and scan- fatal diseases
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