are the stars out tonight?

life and stuff


and to think i thought i was a minor techie, we were sitting around talking about sarah's i book the other night and how spoilt she's getting. and she said, "that's right, i'll be wanting my own airport next." i pictured sarah flying into her own private airport, perhaps on her own private jet with her own private flight attendants and so on. "no my own airport." i felt foolish.

last night we went to see the boy asm play his acoustic guitar in front of some people in halifax. he forgot the words to judy and the dream of horses, which is a foolish thing for a sinisterine to do. he said he'd expected us to prompt him. instead he played his cover of hard to explain, which is always good.

i've got a funny lump in my mouth. it arrived yesterday. it's quite small and it feels hard, and it's on my gum below my teeth on the inside. it doesn't feel especially sore unless i press it with my tongue, so i'm not very worried about it. even so, if it's still there on monday i might go to the health centre.


feeling all full of cold today (oh and cream crackered because i was up at six this morning to finish that essay - when will i learn?). ian talbot was luverly, he even remembered me (well kinda). i shall post some of his amusing anecdotes about theatrical life when i get around to transcribing the interview, although i'll be leaving out the bits where i'm talking about jarvis and tim, and the gushy bits where i say "no, i know it's a cliché, but it really changed my life" and stuff, because that's just embarrassing.

*sigh* sarah got a beautiful, beautiful ibook for her birthday (even though it's not for a little bit yet) and i want one damnit, it's so pretty and it does cool stuff. she's calling it jude, after jude law and after saint jude, the patron saint of lost causes and desperate situations - which is pretty appropriate given that we realised that on friday there will be exactly two months before all our extended essays are due in. that's 12 000 words in total. sounds like a bit of a desperate situation to me.

i brought a scrabble up from london with me - it was my grandmother's set, which means that it survived the crossing from india and the 1987 hurricane and a train journey up to york. it's pretty battered, but that just makes it cooler. scrabble also has a very dear place in my heart because i once dreamed about playing it with stuart murdoch. i'm off to brush up on my two letter words.


we had a seven seven inches by seven bar event last night - the idea's pretty simple, seven people get to play seven singles, but it's bluddy difficult trying to pick your seven all time favourite songs. for the record (ooh the pun), these were mine:
1) oh bondage up yours - x-ray spex a classic piece of girl punk, my copy's on the fantastic 1-2-3-4 punk and new wave box set. it was a toss up between this and the undertones' teenage kicks, which is also an amazing song.
2) bandages - hot hot heat, chris j was very unimpressed, but it's a grate song - there's so much, er, joy in it.
3) feels like summer - sing sing i first heard this on a tape which arrived as part of the sinister tape tree. it's a really really lovely tune, with vocals from emma anderson of lush fame.
4) razzmatazz - pulp i had to have a pulp song. ideally it would have been ou (gone gone), which i thought was a b-side, but i now realise was a single, and i am a dumbass.
5) 25 miles - edwin starr yay, just yay.
6) don't falter - mint royale feat. lauren laverne the song that i wish i had written, because it's beautiful.
7) starman - david bowie oh how i love my david bowie, especially this one, because it's all floaty and cool.

so there you go - no room, tragically for ikara colt's sinking venice, or speedy's boy wonder, or even faster! but i was happy with the choices. and yes, i prolly won't be listening to hot hot heat in 20 years time, but the whole point of the single is to be ephemeral - something that isn't intended to last - it's just coincidence really that some do (others don't, who remembers the beatles' thankyou girl?)

it was really interesting listening to what other people played - sam picked babies and raindrops keep falling on my head and some others. stu played patio song by gorky's, which was lovely to hear. so, what would you pick (you know you've been thinking about it since you found out about it)?


is there anything worse than a blank word file just waiting to be filled up with an essay you don't really care about? today it's "cordelia and silence in king lear", which is looking to be pretty darn awful. ah well. at least i've arranged to meet ian talbot on friday, to interview him about another boring essay: "inside out and outside in: performances in the park and under the proscenium arch", or something like that. well, that one should be a bit more interesting, because i adore regent's park. i just can't get excited about shakespeare on the page (sorry mate).


i'm feeling quite a lot better now, despite the bureaucratic fiasco which has led to our clubnite on friday being cancelled (alice forgot to hand a form in, and they've been extremely arsey about it). i got a text from glenn yesterday saying that he'd finished his chemo, which is fantastic news. it sounds like he's going to be alright, hurrah.

also, i recieved in the post yesterday a cd that i'd ordered from tower records - make up the breakdown by hot hot heat. it's not out in the uk until march the 24th, and i just didn't think i could wait that long. the absolute highlight is the totally crazed single (out march 10) bandages, which xfm and old weasel face (it's affectionate) himself steeeve have been playing quite a lot. i'm sure come the end of the month the nme'll be all over them, but for the minute, they're mine, d'you hear me? mine.

oh yeah, and i've applied to be on regency house party, the new channel 4 program, in a 1900 house styleeee. it looks pretty funny, and i think i could definitely pull off empire line - and what better things have i got to do this summer. the only problem is finding a substitute blog - i shall have to copy things down into some kind of *shudder* paper diary, maybe i could post them to someone who could then put them up here? but i think i might just be crossing several bridges before come to them there.


looks like it was depression after all not just i'm miserable and single. i'm scoring highly on the self check depression test. that would explain this i-can-hardly-function feeling, oh and the fact i can't stop crying.

damn. i thought i'd sorted this.

the march was pretty amazing. we (that's me, stu, his new girlfriend becky and her friend rosie) managed to go a lot faster than the rest of the yorkies (mostly 'cos i can actually find my way around london) so we saw a lot of the march. even so, we didn't get to hyde park until the rally had finished (we started at gower street at about 1.30, and reached park lane at 5.00).

one of my favourite moments came as we were walking past the palace theatre, where various members of the cast of les miserables were getting ready for their saturday matinee, and waving the french flag out of their dressing room windows at us. there was a brief attempt by the marchers to sing the marseillaise which petered out pretty quickly when no one knew the words beyond the first two lines.

later, however, there was a song we all knew the words to being played from a window somewhere along (i think) high holborn. it was the beatles' all you need is love, which fitted perfectly with the mood of the march. it was an amazingly diverse crowd as well - there were people of all ages, all races from all over the country (on the way down from york we kept passing and being passed by busses which said things like "warsall 7" and "nottingham 4"). weirdly, i suppose, it's the sort of thing which makes me proud to be british: not only the fact that we have the right to do this, but also the fact that everyone can get involved, from kids in push chairs to the lady walking next to us, who must have been in her seventies, proudly wearing her (stuart reckoned) cbe on her chest.

i'm so glad i went, because i think it might make a difference (although judging from the way the government are closing ranks, it won't), but also because it was a really amazing experience. when i was at school, i always wanted to go on the anti-capitalist marches my friend zoe went on, i never did, and they usually ended in tears (or at least smashed up mcdonalds), so it was nice to go on a real, peaceful protest against something i really do disagree with.


wow, so v-day is here, and i'm still single and lonely. but i do have a ticket for the stop the war march tomorrow - there are apparently going to be twenty coaches going from york, and i managed to get one of the last tickets. yay me.

but two years ago, i was getting reading to go down to london for something very different, which leads me neatly into the final egoweefs

katie* Dec 2000-Jun 2001

i met katie in the ladies toilet at popstarz just before christmas, and we hit it off immediately. the club being so noisy, it was really the best place to be to actually talk. and i somehow managed to actually be quite smooth (when someone asked us if we were going out, i replied "not yet" - see the suavity? no? oh well.). so after we kissed goodbye, and i got on the hammersmith and city line home (popstarz finishes at 5, just in time to catch the first tube) i was all tingly with delight. with the inevitable result that i couldn't keep my mouth shut over christmas, so when my nana asked me if i was courting i told her i was seeing someone called... keith (or actually a pseudonym which began with katie's actual initial, but it was equally unlikely).

so far so good, we were both from london, but i was up in york and she was in oxford, where she was heavily involved in lgbt stuff. so we emailed each other a lot. and about this time two years ago, i went down to oxford for their big gay ball (actually it was called something classier than that, but i can't remember what), where i met her friends and saw quite a lot of her.

over the easter holiday, we spent even more time together, we went to the boatrace and had a fantastic time. i even introduced her to the girls from school, and even they liked her. i was thrilled, and i did something which i have never done with anyone else, i said "i love you" first. and i was a bit drunk, but it was actually true.

but then our lives intervened - she had to stay in oxford over the summer to study, ahem, ancient norse (really), and i was already beginning to mess about behind the metaphorical bike sheds with stuart, so our emails just kind of stopped. out of all the things i have done in relationships, that's the thing i regret the most. she's graduated now, and i have no idea what she's up to, but i hope she's having fun, whatever it is.


only two more to go, dear reader. there is a light at the end of the tunnel, because (fortunately), i haven't gone out with that many people.

#4 alistair* Mar 1999-Oct 1999
how's this for romantic? i met ali in november 98, down the river at hammersmith. a gang of us from school had got into the habit of going down there because the pubs would serve you if you were underage, and even if they didn't you could get alcopops from tesco metro and drink them in furnivall gardens. so, yes, i met ali and we got on really well, but i didn't see him again. until...

one day at school i got a note which just said "tara in the sixth form phone ali on....", i had not a clue who it was from (one of the points of going down the river was to drink until you forgot everything). so i phoned, and it was him (rather obviously). we met up at the school production of noah's flood, where i told everyone he was "auditioning for the role of boyfriend", because i really was that pretentious. later we were nearly arrested as he tried to roll a joint in a hammersmith alleyway.

yes, drugs were a very important part of ali's life. going to st paul's school does that to boys, although, curiously, not my brother. he dealt draw, with the result that i have not that much memory of most of that period (bit of a recurring thing that). he was very genial stoned, if a bit intense sober. when i think of him, it's quite often with his face creased up in a big smile.

his other big thing was philosophy (weird how the two things go together so well), he edited a magazine at sps and was hoping to do it at uni (you might be able to tell from the tense there that he didn't manage it). so we got on fine with the drugs and the philosophy, and i even managed to get him to like some pop music (he was strictly a jazz and classical man). but there were a few strange things about him - the way he was very close to one of his friends from school, who used to turn to him occasionally and make snidey comments. and he never seemed quite happy about me being bi (although admittedly, i did cheat on him with the first girl i ever kissed, and stuff.

so in the end we broke up, over the phone, and i had great plans to stay friends with him, until he started seeing one of my best friends, less than a month afterwards. that was a bit, erm, underhand, because i ended up losing both of them. but i got my revenge mwahahahaha - the first christmas after we'd all started uni, i got off with her, while they were still going out. hee.


huzzah for the interweb, stu's band played the final of battle of the bands last night, and i was able to not only listen to the whole thing on ury but also send in silly emails, which obviously got read out because no one listens to ury, much less emails them. so even though i wasn't actually there, i was, y'know still cracking jokes and offering support. the bonus of being at home, of course is the food - last night there was goulash which was filling and very good. so now i'm going to segue seamlessly into egoweefs by pointing out that jarvis used to have a theory that all we ever ate in our house was salmon, because both times he came round we were having salmon. it was very strange. anyway, ladies and gentlemen:

#3 jarvis Aug 1998-Dec 1998
the first words i remember saying to jarvis were "do you like pulp?". we were rehearsing for the jungle book (clicky here to read an "hillarious" anecdote about the show) at cecil sharp house - he (unsurprisingly really) was playing mowgli, i was chorus. we got to be friends very quickly after my opening gambit, because we had an awful lot in common.

but he also seemed very exotic - a couple of years older, asian, from south london and, as far as i could tell, gay. there was the leo keyring and the photo of the "friend" in his wallet. but then one day there we were sitting under a tree in regent's park kissing. and so it turned out he was bi, and actually the first bi person i had met (disregarding myself). we had a lot of fun that summer, including (i remember) a mock wedding, backstage at the open air theatre in the interval of one of the shows. i went with him to get his a-level results, and he put brave face on his disappointment. and we went to a lot of films - he was ushering at the new uci cinema in surrey quays so he got free tickets every week and we went to everything. for my birthday, he bought me a cuddly monkey (like the one in the air video) and a t-shirt which read "if you were a horse, i'd clean the crap out of your stable" from the divine comedy album a short album about love.

when term started again, i was very pleased with my exciting new boyfriend, who was unique thus far in my dating history in that i actually fancied him. i still saw him a couple of times a week, usually at shared experience - he and his friends were members, so i joined too, and had a lot of fun. but there were beginning to be problems with the relationship - he wanted, um, quite a lot more of me than i was prepared to give him. and i thought he was sleeping with a friend from his film course (he was).

and then a bombshell, he'd been diagnosed as anorexic. i felt very guilty - as though it were my fault that he and rob had been ill. the next time i saw him, i realised that he was very thin, but worse than that, when i went to hug him, he flinched. so that was it really. by december, i was getting quite militant, with my valerie solanas obsession just beginning. and so we broke up, mutually, over the phone.

we've stayed really good friends since then. and just over a year after we broke up, i finally let him have his wicked way with me. and even that didn't change our friendship, which is something i'm still really pleased about.


i did mean to post yesterday but my parents have a terrible habit of getting me drunk, so when i did try to post and was then thwarted by aol being shite i couldn't be arsed to try again. i did mean to post about how great tony benn was on thursday when he came and spoke to us in york. even though the most subversive thing he did was light his pipe in the no-smoking auditorium (i say this because i genuinely believe that no one in this country wants a war, thus being anti-war is not subversive), which got great cheers. i think i'll prolly go on the march next saturday in london, because it's terrifically important that we make the leaders of the world realise that we. do. not. want. war. simple really.

i'm not sure if it's egoweefs or stu having a new girlfriend, or the fact that i can't stop watching gay girl films and listening to 69 love songs (well, y'know i am a bit of a masochist), but the result is that i'm feeling verrrrry single at the moment. *sighs, bats eyelashes*, plus it didn't help at all that i read tipping the velvet on my train ride down. anyway the upshot is that you have to wait until tomorrow for the skinny (ha) on egoweefs #3 (who is jarvis - he doesn't get a pseudonym, because he goes by one anyway.) because i'm too busy feeling bitter that i haven't got (to borrow a phrase from laura again) a chocolate covered girl, or really a girl of any kind. grrrr.


batten down the hatches it's bluddy windy in york today. there was a cat outside our house earlier, which was miaowing because he was so cold, he was actually shivering - i've never seen a cat do that - but as he had a collar on and looked pretty well fed, i just stroked him a bit and went on my way. we didn't get through the semis last night, but i'm not really bothered, because today it's time for egoweefs part the second!

#2 rob* Dec 1997-June 1998

this is bad, i'm almost ashamed to admit it. i met rob on the message board angst. yes, that's right, i went out with someone i met on the interweb.

anyway, what happened was that i posted something along the lines of "are there any manics fans out there". it was the first time i'd ever been on the internet at home, and i was quite excited, it was also the first time i ever used my nom de plume. anyway, rob replied and we emailed each other for a while before finally agreeing to meet up. it was a cold day in december when i turned up in the magazine section of the virgin megastore on oxford street.

the first thing i noticed about him was that he looked a bit like euros childs from gorky's zygotic mynci. and that he wasn't that much taller than me (i'm 5ft 2"). but we got along fine - we both adored the manics he was also a big placebo fan.

so we went to a lot of gigs, went shopping in camden quite a lot and did y'know boyfriend/girlfriend stuff. one of my strongest memories of rob is of seeing the stereophonics at the astoria, then getting the nightbus home to my house where he had to borrow a bottle of nail varnish remover because he didn't fancy getting beaten up in school the next day.

if i'm honest, i found him a bit boring. we'd only see each other once a weekend or so, but i'd still go out of my way to avoid it. once we arranged to go to a legalise cannabis march (which was actually funny considering he'd never smoked draw in his life), i reached the place we'd said we'd meet early and hadn't bothered to wait. i just went off on my own. and this was in the days before mobile phones, so i have little or no idea what he did.

but then, the next weekend, i phoned him to arrange to meet and his mum told me he was still in bed. an hour later: still in bed. an hour later: "i'm sorry rob's not well he's had to go to the hospital". what? i guessed she didn't mean the a&e room, and the next day i was proved right when rob phoned me from the hospital where he had been sectioned because he was a danger to himself. the call itself was horrible. he was really upset, and i wasn't much better. the call was terminated abruptly by a nurse, because he shouldn't have been phoning me at all.

in the end he was released after a week. i think it was really his mother over-reacting to his self-harm rather than anything more serious. what you also have to remember is that we were right in the middle of our gcses so it was a very important, stressful time. i was already in a bit of a state, and rob being ill didn't really help. i broke up with him quite soon after our exams finished (the day of a symposium gig) and never saw him again. although i heard stories every so often from a girl at school who knew him, so i knew he was ok.

a google search tells me that he ended up at reading, although not what course he's doing or anything else, but it's nice to see that he's alright after all.


as valentine's day is coming up i wanted to do something to commemorate it. thus i present, for your delight and delectation, the great everyone i have ever gone out with ever, except for stuart project. (eihegoweefs - henceforth it shall be known as egoweefs a meaningless word for a meaningless project). let us begin.

#1 jon* Aug 1996-Feb 1997
i think of jon as my first boyfriend. of course, it all depends on your definition of "boyfriend", because we never actually kissed, just held hands. even though i was 15 and he was 14 and we were both clearly old enough. he did, however, send me my first valentine from someone who wasn't my parents.

we met doing a "let's do the show right here" type tv show course for kids at the now defunct museum of the moving image. we bonded over the fact that we went to brother and sister schools and our mutual love of science fiction - quantum leap and sliders being two favourites. he was much more into films and television than me, though, my passion for music was growing and growing, i did make him a couple of tapes though, one of which i gave him when we broke up, it cunningly included the sleeper song nice guy eddie, which was pretty much how i thought of jon - as a nice bloke, but not one that i was particularly in love with. actually i was kind of embarrassed by him.

in december '96, a couple of my friends invited him to a party we were going to (without telling me), (hosted by the first girl i ever kissed as it happens). i was really embarrassed, i downed 4 cups of mulled wine and ended up talking to the hostess' dad about cricket. later i kissed a tree. i saw him a couple of years later, he was looking older and i realised that he was actually quite good looking, with that john cusack thing going on.

i wonder how he saw the relationship, because i was going through all kinds of changes during that time - by march 97 i was pretty skinny and i'd already started self harming, by that summer i was starting to come out as bi. i don't even know if he knew any of that (my memories of the period are, um, patchy at best), but i'm pretty sure he didn't. i do regret the way i treated him, because he certainly deserved better. in my defence, though, i wasn't at my sanest.

* all names have been changed because i'm an indie wuss


beginning the redesign here, but it's a bit of a nightmare really because the only computers that are working on campus are the crappy windows 95 ones which just depress me because this template looks terrible in netscape.
updated at about 6.45, there are still no computers working (apart from the bad ones in vanbrugh), and for some reason, i can't make my archive match the front page, even though blogger is claiming that i have saved my template. grr.