Thursday, September 30, 2010

I just woke up

The feeling of coming home from lovely sleepy Issum and being tumbled from the last languid dregs of summer into this past month can be summed up crudely but succinctly in the first two bars of this song (aaww, remember The Rakes?)

Back in college, part-time staff have been axed. All of a sudden (as it seems), just as we were starting to forget the whole sordid business a little bit, the country has again been sucker-punched with debt that's hard to fathom - imagine being suddenly saddled with full UK university debts, for a course you never chose, never attended, and didn't even wangle a decent hoodie out of.
Most of the world think we're spanners run by a drunk, and it seems like we might agree. (An aside - why, when googling Angela Merkel, is the first suggestion "angela merkel cleavage"? ...Oh. Yes, I see.)
Essentially, woe. Woe is us.

There's a certain attitude that seems to me to be the prevailing wind to a certain degree, and it boils down to this: "feck it". In a way though, I didn't expect it to make a hideous economic downturn this... Cute. Now it seems like you might as well just run with that ludicrous business idea you were too busy holding down or paving the way for a respectable job during the boomtime to entertain. Now, you might as well go for it - who knows what might grow from all this seriously turned earth, and if it all goes belly-up, you can just blame it on the hostility of the (altogether now) current financial climate.
I mean, there are FOUR different new milkshake shops in the city centre! There's a leprechaun museum! Crepe emporiums! More floral-patterned boutiques than you can shake a cloche at! Oohh, let's all just hold hands and skip down the cobble stones.

In other mad-eyed topics, this month I've been watching and thoroughly enjoying Boardwalk Empire. First impressions were that I can entirely understand how the pilot alone cost $15 million. It's all such a carnival of weird detail (the boardwalk incubator exhibition, anyone?) and at least to my kind of eyes looks to have been exhaustively researched. It's clever, it's funny, and it's damned handsome.

And the clothes, the clothes. Nucky's shouty ties and tack-sharp suits. The drop-waist heaven of dresses. The hats.

It's so richly shot. They really make full use of Buscemi's Slavic goblin face, having realised that it's shown to best advantage when looking a) sardonic or b) noble despite itself. I notice that his chameleon character has also been granted, intentionally or not, the rather unfair advantage of careful anachronism - when someone goes off on some stagily dated rant, there he is to slip the merest little frisson of modern-day smugness into his snappy retort, or, say, neatly lever Kelly McDonald's too-good-to-be-true feminist Madonna into a debate on women's suffrage against two big bad patriachs.

True, maybe they self-consciously leave in realistic awkward pauses that just seem too HUGE in HBO format, and maybe Buscemi lacks a certain necessary menace, but whatever. I'll be watching.

And finally, this blog has broken my heart. It's just.. Too good.

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