Monday, 14 January 2008


While researching an article on the internet the other day, I came across The Encyclopedia Of Sexual Practices. Once I’d finished researching and cleared up the mess, I decided to have a browse.

Now, as my lawyers will tell you I’m a pretty open minded guy, (which as we all know is code for ‘not fussy’) and what adults do in the privacy of their own home is entirely their own business (as long as they aren’t being gay). However, that doesn’t mean I don't find more than half of what is described in this frankly flabbergasting list of sexual deviance absolutely fascinating, if sometimes more than a little weird. This is because I have the mind of a five year old

Those of you born before 1970, along with the closed minded, bigots, the severely sexually repressed and people with better things to do, will probably not want to read the rest of this, as it contains bad, rude, dirty words and graphic descriptions of willies.

The rest of you: I had to say that to avoid upsetting a load of people who are, frankly, just cunts.

Ready? Setgo.

I’ll start with the poor sods who must just live their lives in a blinding haze of sexual excitement:

Xenophilia: arousal from strangers

Albutophilia: arousal from water

Actirasty: arousal from exposure to sun's rays

Hyphephilia: arousal from touching skin, hair, leather, fur or fabric

Ecdemolagnia: arousal from traveling or being away from home

Normophilia: those aroused by acts considered normal by their group or society

Gomphipothic: arousal by the sight of teeth

Dendrophilia: arousal from trees

Perhaps these people have just played the game very well and chosen something outlandishly common to find exciting. Unlike this lot, for whom making life difficult seems to be an art form:

Autassassinophilia: arousal from orchestrating one's own death by the hands of another

Entomocism: the use of insects

Taphephilia: arousal from being buried alive

Phygephilia: sexual arousal from being a fugitive

Robotism: attraction to or the use of robots in sex play

Symphorophilia: arousal from arranging a disaster, crash, or explosion

I suppose the people I am most envious of are the hedonophiles, who are sexually aroused by pleasure, creating what I imagine must be an infinite loop of joy. Less happy are the dacryphiles, who are sexually excited by seeing their partners cry. Whether or not they go about making their significant others cry on purpose, it must be bloody inconvenient to have the raging horn while the object of your affections is bawling their eyes out.

Then we have erotophobia and gamophobia, fear of sex and marriage respectively, conditions which are highly gender specific, at least according to badly written nineteen seventies sitcoms.

Then we have the creative:

Botulinonia: using a sausage as a dildo

Docking: slipping one partner's foreskin over the glans penis of another

Ophidicism: use of snakes for sexual purposes

The odd:

Homilophilia: sexual arousal from hearing or giving sermons

Brachioprotic eroticism: a deep form of fisting where the arm enters the anus

Nosophilia: arousal from knowing partner has terminal illness

The obvious:

Gymnophilia: arousal from nudity

And Those simply filed under "You're doing it wrong.":

Nasolingus: arousal from sucking nose of partner

Oculolinctus: licking partner's eyeball

Axillism: penis penetrating an arm pit

We also have the ingenious idea of:

Handkerchief Codes: color codes to identify sexual preferences

A practice I think should be more widely employed. Can I suggest we use 'No Handkerchief' to denoted 'Extreme Scat'?

There is also a wonderful lesson on the abecedarian nature of irony:

Harem: area where Arabs kept wives at home and separated from others

Harem effect: lesbianism

But I'd like to finish with a definition I think gives hope to us all:

Harmatophilia: arousal from sexual incompetence


Saturday, 5 January 2008

Advice, part one

1.)Writers of American Sitcoms:

It isn't necessary to insert canned laughter at the end of every sentence. You should only really need do it after the ones that are jokes.

2.) Bruce Forsythe:

Why not try faking your own death to conceal the fact you ahve obviously discovered the secret to eternal life? Alternatively, why not try not tapdancing on national television despite the facts your bones should clearly be dust?

3.) The Dull:

Saying 'Yes, it's Tuesday all day today' in response to a perfectly legitimate calendrical enquiry does not in itself qualify as humor

4.) Hugh Hefner:

Hide your total lack of humanity, morality and maturity by not publicly bragging about shagging all seven of your vapid, eighteen year old whores despite being old enough to be their ancestor.

5.) Blog Writers:

Save time and energy by simply stealing your format from Viz Top Tips

Alvin and the Chipmunks: Requiem For Class Consciousness

Yesterday I offered to take my son to the cinema. Asking Josh what he wanted to see, he informed me he would like to watch "Alvin and the Chipmunks" because, apparently, I did something to offend God in one of my previous lives.

Or so I thought. But what I had worried would be a turgid, banal experience chronicling the unlikely escapades of squeaky voiced vermin was, in fact, a polemic about the disenfranchisement of the workers and their alienation from their fellow men at the hands of the ruling class. I left the cinema richer in knowledge about myself and the world I live in. While I want to spend most of this article discussing the themes and subtexts of the film in a literary sense, where appropriate, for example where I feel a particular insight doesn't fit into the overarching narrative, I will report it alongside the text in a bullet point

  • like this one

But on to the main event. To understand the haunting Marxist subtext of this film it’s necessary to briefly outline the plot.

Alvin, Simon and Theodore are chipmunks who live in a tree. "Dave" (his last name is never given, I assume, so as to symbolise his ‘everyman’ status) is a struggling songwriter living in the suburbs. Their lives are thrown together when the chipmunks’ tree is chopped down and erected as decoration at the headquarters of the music label “Dave” is trying to get signed to. Dave is rejected brutally by the record label’s boss, Joe. Stealing a basket of muffins as he leaves, Dave unwittingly brings the hiding chipmunks into his home.

  • Crushing up popcorn in your hands can help relieve what would otherwise be fatal levels of stress

It would be easy to argue that the characters are no more than tired class stereotypes, the cardboard cutouts so beloved of modern agitprop cinema. Dave is the listless, disaffected suburban worker who dreams of escaping his day job for a more 'creative' career, but who is held back both by soulless corporations, and his own poverty of ambition. The Chipmunks are little better than serfs; their very home is wantonly destroyed by a capitalist machine they are incapable of understanding, let alone stopping. So far, so Brecht, you are probably thinking. Indeed, I was beginning to wonder if we were in for an unnecessary retelling of the familiar Dickensian (or even Orwellian) stories of class struggle. What I got was much closer to a narrative re-telling of Das Kapital .

Dave offers the rodents and his friends a place to stay in return for them agreeing to provide vocals for his songs. It is this level of understanding of the bourgeois middle class mindset which elevates 'Alvin' above mere
Brechtian fairytale - Dave is not merely a two dimensional victim of the system, but an active proponent of it! When given the opportunity he is happy to exploit the chipmunks' homelessness and talent, pimping their creativity to his social betters like some kind of slum landlord. In return, the chipmunks not only fail to see the nature of this exploitation but even start to see Dave as a paternalistic figure - a perhaps self conscious echo of the relationship between the Artful Dodger and Fagin in Oliver Twist. The Chipmunks' songs (that they are Christmas songs is just one of the numerous nodding asides given to the film's growing riff on the power of commercialism) are a huge hit.

  • Talking animals, if discovered, would not be endlessly studied by astonished scientists, but would in fact be given major record contracts on prominent music labels

During the course of the film, the chipmunks are forced to chose between two forms of societal oppression - the oppressive quasi-familial environment to which they have become accustomed in Dave's home, or a new, (perhaps fundamentally more honest) nakedly capitalistic relationship with their record label manager 'uncle Joe'. The themes explored here - the corrupting influence of wealth, the exploitative nature of the music industry - are perhaps over familiar, but are explored with such a light touch by director Alan Smithee that what would be considered lazy Neo-Marxism in other films is easily forgiven here. What really strikes home is the bold truth, not proposed but merely acknowledged here that the family at it's core functions first and foremost as an economic unit. While we may reject, or disagree with this assessment, we can but applaud Alvin And The Chipmunks for raising what is a difficult and oft ignored topic.

  • Biting the inside of your lip til it bleeds can provide a welcome distraction from events going on around you

The final pastiche - in which 'Uncle Al' discovers that 'his' Chipmunks have in fact escaped and been replaced by tasteless plush toys, the very toys he has been selling, tasteless, soulless, fundamentally empty representations of the 'Munks themselves - is a joy to behold. While the literal representation of a metpahorical idea - that the Chipmunks had become mere commodities in Joe's eyes, objects to be bought and sold - would seem heavy handed in other, less incisive films, here it is a delight.

Lest you think, however, that the ending is in any way simplistic, know that we are left pondering the ambiguous, almost mercenary nature of Dave and the Chipmunks' new 'family' - at once a haunting reference to the exploitative and damaging way in which so many child stars, from Michael Jackson to Donnie Osmond have been raised, and, simultaneously, a chilling critique of the way capitalism can turn all human relationships, however sacred, into mere economic transactions.

  • Pretending an astonishingly tedious film has in fact got a rich and challenging subtext may save your sanity, but it's no sure thing.
The film is not without it's faults. It suffers from a failure to have genetically engineered and then trained live chipmunks for the roles of Alvin, Simon and Theodore, forcing the viewers instead to suspend their belief over hideous C.G.I. monstrosities. While the alternative would have cost many hundreds of billions of pounds, it would surely have cemented this film's place as the only motion picture to entirely pinpoint and explain the human condition in all of it's splendour and complexity. Instead, while I remain confident that this will be the last film ever made, as no other director, writer, actor or producer will dare even attempt to use the medium of cinema again after such a final and all encompassing masterpiece, one cannot help but feel an opportunity has been missed.

A few explosions or a car chase would have been nice too

Finally, I cannot help the feel the film has been poorly marketed. Surveying the cinema I noticed that the vast majority of the audience were children, many of whom will have missed the finer points of the socialist dialectic expounded in the film. Josh, for example, seemed to enjoy the film itself, but then was totally bewildered during the four hour blow by blow recap of the narrative that I gave him - frequently crying with frustration at his inability to grasp the concepts the film had so eloquently explored.

These quibbles aside, however, it would be intellectually dishonest for me not to state that this was simply the best film that has ever been made - and indeed the only one anybody should ever bother watching, as all others seem disgustingly bad in comparison.


  • Whatever I did to so anger our Lord, it must have been very, very bad.

Wednesday, 2 January 2008

This is a story all about how Will Smith got in trouble

Will Smith got himself in trouble for making the following statement:

"Even Hitler didn't wake up going, 'let me do the most evil thing I can do today'," said Will. "I think he woke up in the morning and using a twisted, backwards logic, he set out to do what he thought was 'good'. Stuff like that just needs reprogramming."

Which has sent lobbying group "The Jewish Defence League" into an apoplectic rage and forced Will Smith's press officer to release the following statement:

"It is an awful and disgusting lie. It speaks to the dangerous power of an ignorant person with a pen. I am incensed and infuriated to have to respond to such ludicrous misinterpretation. Adolph Hitler was a vile, heinous, vicious killer responsible for one of the greatest acts of evil committed on this planet."

Now maybe I missed the memo, but at what point did it become contentious to suggest that Hitler
thought he was doing the right thing? Have we strayed so very far from the path of intellectual rationalism that we can no longer divorce the concept of how something is objectively from how someone, for example Hitler, perceives that thing, subjectively to be.

Seriously, i thought it was a given that everybody, always, in all situations, broadly thinks that they are doing the right thing? Isn't that just how the human mind works? Whatever your construction of 'good' is, you work out how best to fulfill those criteria and go for it?

Is it really that controversial to say that Hitler was quite a big fan of himself?

Lets take a look at some of the comments posted by computer literate algae:

"Will Smith isn't all bad...

Glad we cleared that up

"but those comments are not only ignorant but idiotic. What kind of hullabaloo would be going on if a big male actor made a comment about how "The KKK isn't all bad. They are only going what they think is 'good."

A big hullabaloo, apparently

"If Imus got fired for "nappy headed ho's"

Don Imus used a racial epithet to describe a team of black women who excelled at their sport as prostitutes with bad hair. For this he was fired.

then following the same logic they should euthanize Will Smith because his comments were not said in jest. I am incredibly offended and doubt I will encourage anyone I know to go to see I Am Legend.

This last part is the most puzzling of all. What possible bearing can Smith's comments have on whether or not his latest sci-fi zombie flick is any good?

Yes, yes, I know. It's a boycott, which is a useful means of affecting social change. I just wish it wasn't this particular instance of social change.

On with the retardery:

"Yes and southern KKK members in the '50's "did not wake up thinking they would do evil," before burning crosses and hanging blacks from trees...." Right Will?"

Yes, that is exactly what Will Smith is saying. Actually yes. That is actually what he is saying. Your attempt at sarcasm is in fact merely an accurate description of reality. You suck.

Has society degraded to such a point now that we can't even conceive that our enemies - be they racists, terrorists or just plain old Hitler - don't actually think they are being evil? At whatr point did the complex moral fabric of the universe get replaced with a remedial version of Lord Of The Rings, where everything is black or white, and the bad guys are so visibly bad they don't even make a presence otherwise? In all seriousness, if we have actually lost the ability for basic empathy, humankind might finally be well and truly fucked.