24 November 2005


B. and I have been ludicrously tired recently, B. from her current sustained and hectic stint at work and me from looking after her and picking up the slack at home, so last Saturday was reasonably low-key -- a trip to another nice local café (too local to have a website), a return visit to the deli and a trip to the cinema to see The Libertine in the evening.

Never having seen the play, all we knew about the film was that Johnny Depp was playing the Earl of Rochester, famous among Eng. Lit. undergraduates the world over for writing dead rude poems about shagging and stuff, so we were expecting rather more of an hilarious historical romp than we got. There are indeed some funny bits (notably the musical performance of Rochester's satirical poem "Signior Dildo"), but Depp's portrayal of an individual in the progressively degenerate, humiliating and hideous late stages of syphilis -- reconstructed with enthusiastic realism by the makeup artists -- isn't exactly a barrel of laughs. It goes without saying that Depp's performance is mesmerising, and John Malkovitch as Charles II was pretty bloody good as well... but The Libertine is very much not a cheery film, and individuals fixated on Depp's physical beauty go to see it at their own particular risk.

Oh, and there's an awful lot of swearing, too. What with that and reading Cock and Bull I feel as if I've encountered more incidences of the paired c-words this week than during any equivalent prior period.

I think the review of Anansi Boys may have to wait for a time when I'm not so exhausted -- possibly next week sometime, when B.'s hard stint at work has finally ended. In preparation for the much-anticipated The Christmas Invasion, I may also update the recently quiescent Parrinium Mines with reactions to such events in the Doctor Who world as the 2005 season DVD boxed set, the recent Children in Need special and the sad end of the proper Doctor Who novels.

However, all of this needs to wait until I have the time. We'll be spending most of this weekend recovering -- including meeting up for lunch with our goddaughter and her family at the Tobacco Factory on Saturday -- then on Thursday next week we're off for a long weekend in London, consorting (and possibly, depending on circumstances, cavorting) with sundry sisters-in-law, Doctor Who fans and ex-DougSoc members.

Other than all that (and some mild but hardly conclusive expressions of interest in the pseudonymous pulp novel I was talking about a while ago) not a vast amount's been going on here. I do, however, have intelligence that Short Trips: The History of Christmas is now in release, which is good news. I'm looking forward to getting my copies through the post, and if you've pre-ordered it (and if not, why not?) then so should you be.

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