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Wilson

I'm now the proud owner of a volleyball. My film-making friend Matt gave one to me over coffee this afternoon. Just coming off a six week shoot, he explained that camerapeople put volleyballs under cameras so they get more control over them. They had christened it Wilson, obviously in reference to Cast Away, and it had functioned as a kind of lucky charm. Now that the shoot was over, Wilson was going free, so Matt thought I might to have it. I accepted it gratefully; I'd heard before of such tricks used on film sets, but I was fascinated to hear a first hand account. You hear that all kinds of semi-ritualistic things go on behind the camera, so it's cool to be allowed a glimpse of that world.

We didn't do it!

For the record, I was not the person who hacked British airways, and nor did Lyn. We have enjoyed a lovely trip to Eltham to visit Marta. It's been a splendid afternoon visiting a dear old friend, so we were both far too busy to commit any cybercrime. Sat out in her garden, catching up, exchanging news and gossip in a peaceful, pretty London suburb, the events of the world seemed miles away It had been ages since we had seen our former PA turned firm friend, so when L said she had invited us over for tea, I leapt at the chance. It turned out to be a perfect day, and a perfect alibi.


[Edited 27/05/2017 at 21:27:40 - added a link]

London comic con

Today London threw me one of it's nice little surprises. It's obviously gorgeous out there - easily the nicest, hottest day of the year so far - so I decided to go for a drive along the river and up to the dome. Certain things are still playing on my mind from yesterday, and I needed to think them through. Once up there, I decided to hop on to the Emirates cable car, simply because it had been ages since I'd done so, and I want to get to know the north side of the river a bit more.

Once up there, I began to notice something odd: there were lots of people in all kinds of strange costumes about. I trundled over to the Excel Centre, where the oddly-dressed people seemed to be conglomerating, and I suddenly realised I had stumbled upon some sort of huge convention.

I was instantly fascinated. I'm still very much into that kind of fan culture, but I still think I need to explore other forms of it: I still want to find other narratives, beyond those of mainstream film and television, to get into. I decided to pay the twenty quid to get in, and put my Walter Benjamin hat on.

What I found in there was incredible: all sorts of stalls and exhibits about all kinds of narratives and franchises, most of which I had never heard of. It struck me how varied it was: rather than being about one specific narrative, as in a Star Trek convention for example, all kinds of franchises and their corresponding fandoms were on show, particularly manga. Thus I got the impression that this event was more about a form of culture than one specific text. I found it intriguing as an outside observer, wandering in off the street, as it were.

I stayed for about an hour, then set off home. Ii really need to look up some of what I saw; I can see myself getting into that kind of outsider culture. London has done it again: it has shown me something fascinating I wasn't even looking for. But for now, the sun still beating down, it's time to head back out into the city.

Communication Works 2017

Today was Communication Works 2017, and I think it's fair to say that it has been quite a day. I got there nice and early, just as everyone was setting up their stalls. It was in a big sports hall, to one side of which were doors opening on to an area with a small shack. In there they were projecting short films, one of which was my Thousand Londoners film, as well as films by Post 16 students. Close by was a table with folders containing some of my writing. It was the manifestation of the exhibition idea I mentioned here, and I felt quite flattered to be featured so highly.

In the main hall were stalls exhibiting all sorts of the latest communications technology. It was incredibly interesting. I hadn't been there long when my friend Matt arrived to help me film some of it. I'd had the idea of making a film on the event a few days ago; it seemed the best way for me to contribute. We spent a couple of hours getting footage of the stalls and exhibitors, as well as going in to some of the seminars. I think we now have the makings of an excellent film, which I'll edit together soon.

Lyn popped in an hour or two into the event, and we had a fascinating time looking at everything. Mid-afternoon, the three of us popped out for a coffee; L and M stayed at the cafe, while I went back to see the event to it's end. I just got home, rather tired and hot, but glad to have been, and excited what the communication world comes up with by next year.


[Edited 26/05/2017 at 20:29:44 - added a bit]

Archer

Yesterday in the park we touched upon my liking for Bond, as we had just heard the sad news about Roger Moore. Chivon, who works at the cafe there, recommended an animated series called Archer. She said it was a bit of a Bond spoof, but it was very funny and she and her friends were into it in a big way. I just looked up the first episode on Youtube - I had to pay to watch it - and she was right. It isn't a direct spoof of Bond in my opinion, but there are witty, knowing references. It is quite dirty, yet very clever indeed. I also find the style of animation very interesting indeed. When chivon said it was a cartoon, I was expecting something for children; archer definitely is not for kids, although not in the sense that South Park is a cartoon which isn't for kids. I can certainly see myself getting into it. Before I comment on it much further, though, I better go watch more episodes.


[Edited 24/05/2017 at 13:34:14 - Added a bit ]