are the stars out tonight?

life and stuff

growing up too fast

when i was a kid, my brother and i were desperate for some kind of gaming system. we really wanted a snes or a megadrive, but we weren't choosy. mum, being generally quite sensible, if a little conservative, decreed that we could have a gameboy instead. i suspect this was due to pricing rather than any desire to protect young minds from sonic the hedghog.

then, the gameboy was stolen and we were so heartbroken that she gave in and we got our snes. the snes which still occasionally gets dragged out when we're in brighton for a quick mario kart tournament. since the snes we've owned a pretty large number of consoles between us: a game gear, a nes, a playstation (which i took to university with me), and a ps2. i've also got a gameboy advance and a gba sp, which i mainly use for scrabble on the go. oh, and we've gamed on pcs and on my mac (mostly the sims).

we've grown up into (in my case) an occasional, but well-informed gamer, and (in my brother's case) a dedicated, passionate gamer. we both read penny arcade and the guardian gamesblog. we're both more than averagely technologically literate. and despite our enjoyment of the gta games, neither of us has evolved into a crazed murderer (in your face jack thompson!)

but here's the rub... if i had children, at what age would i allow them access to the technology i take forgranted? this thought is down to my reading about a mobile phone for four year olds. i didn't get my first mobile until i was 17. and only then because i was going to glastonbury and my parents were worried i'd be eaten by a crusty. my gut says that under 10 is probably too young for a phone. but according to this article, the average age for a first mobile is now eight. eight! i mean, who are you going to call? there's something very weird going on here.

a pretty girl...

i don't think i ever mentioned it, but a couple of years ago i switched on my tv, and there was the most beautiful girl in the world on it.

the show was the first series of america's next top model, and the girl was the impossibly hotttt (two ts just aren't enough) elyse sewell.

i've never been interested in the model type, but she was a class apart. an indie girl with impeccable credentials (her boyfriend is the keyboard player with the shins), she insulted evangelical christians by telling them she didn't believe in god, and she came extremely close to actually winning the thing.

now thanks to the wonder of the modern age (i mean the weblog, not the abstract concept), i've discovered that she has a livejournal. with pictures. my brain doesn't have space to think about anything else right now. sigh.

mmm, you did wait a week for this. i'm marginally more coherent in my gig journal, though as those usually get posted at half-past eleven the night of the gig, it's a fine, fine line.

birdhouse in my soul

i've become lightly obsessed with a song, birdhouse in your soul, bu they might be giants. lightly obsessed in the sense that i've listened to it about twenty times since i bought it on itunes last week.

there are several music-related reasons that i like the song, but i'm particularly a fan of the lyrics, which are all about a nightlight in a child's bedroom.

once upon a time, i was very afraid of the dark. so afraid that my parents installed a dimmer switch in my bedroom so the room would never be pitch black. even in the not-dark, i used to imagine monsters sneaking in and taking me off with them. the monsters resembled the the wild things from maurice sendak's book, but were much more terrifying.

gradually, of course, i grew out of it, and now i actually prefer to be in a very dark room. but birdhouse in your soul reminds me of that nice feeling when you're little and you wake up in the middle of the night and there's a little glow somewhere in the room.

the socialite

i think i might finally *get* this whole social web thing, it was sort of passing me by before, but now... i think i actually understand it. it's all about what happens when, say, someone sees your profile on myspace , then follows a link to your profile and discovers you like the same music, so they message you and you find their blog and their photos on flickr and their bookmarks on and it's the beginning of a beautiful friendship. possibly.

it's actually quite exciting. weird, but exciting. weird that you can find out a lot about a person - what pictures they've taken, what music they're listening to, what sites they're visiting, who their friends are - without ever actually meeting them. it makes the idea of an entirely online relationship more plausible than ever.

mmm, blogger in amazing potential of web shocka! later... my current obsession with a particular song written from the point of view of a nightlight.

old school

i was worried enough about going to my school reunion to post to sinister about it. but in the end it was quite a success. rather than remembering all the negative things about being at school, i actually remembered a lot of the positive ones. and it was fascinating to see what everyone (or the fifty or so who turned up) was doing these days. most people were terrifically grown up (almost to the point of seeming middle-aged), though there was a small contingent who actually hadn't changed since they were thirteen and weren't any better for it.

i spent the evening answering "not much" to the inevitable "so what are you doing now". though the truth is that i've been quite busy of late. somewhat working two jobs (although only one has been paying me). of course, two days after my five year school reunion, my life suddenly gets infinitely better, when the employers who weren't paying me say they'd like to start. huzzah! perfect timing for christmas.

also, for everyone who's ever wondered what my school looked like, i took no pictures of my friends at the reunion, just of the school. i've created a set on flickr - take a look if you're interested. it's pretty weird, but if you spend enough time there, you get used to it!