Friday, July 29, 2005

25ct gold

Ahh yes... let's face it, any lesson would be good with Lucy Liu teaching it. But which of her characters for which lessons? Maybe Pearl from Payback for games... perhaps Ling Woo for.. well, everything.

Sometimes it seems as if we were never at highschool, due to the fact that things have changed so much. And then something miniscule will happen, like a faraway radiosong or the scent of something, and it's as if we are back in 1996, thinking 1996 thoughts and making 1996 plans. I seem to recall that once in c7, as Wilson took the inevitable cheese sandwiches from his pocket, our gazes met for an instant and the unspoken sentence was "we should remember these days".

By the way, it seems that we have our first comment... a girl called Ashlee, who has a blog of her own and lists titties, dating, pubic, voyeurism, sex, breasts, porn, and exhibitionism amongst her interests. Well huzzah!

An idea... let's refresh our memories and devote some webspace to some of the people that made highschool memorable for us... seeing as Wilson was mentioned, please allow me to set his scene, as it were.

Wilson was a fairly solid lad, which didn't lend him to his class, Edmund, who were famous for their sporting prowess. However, he was an invaluable ballast piece in the chess game that was highschool rugby, and had some modicum of fame in that area. Wilson, or Wils as he was sometimes known, would have been rather unremarkable were it not for the fact that he only ever ate cheese sandwiches. That's right, a diet of only cheese sandwiches, and on extremely rare occasions bread and butter, when there was no cheese. Wilson was a cheerful, ambling kind of a guy, and on my recommendation started to watch Prisoner Cell Block H for a few weeks, but sadly didn't keep up the habit. He was a little scruffy, and by his own admission looked like he had just staggered fully clothed from a big bed. I often wonder whether Wils still only eats cheese sandwiches. There must be long term medical consequences, but that aside it would be rather jolly if he were able to eat cheese sandwiches for the rest of his life.

24-Hour party people

Couldn't agree more, catboy. may i take this opportunity to point to your own twisted blog and the idea of the perfect school. Run by perfect teachers. But what about perfect lessons? Like you said, we never got to study anything we wanted to, more following the same formula as everyone else, which is unfortunate because we all develop different strengths and weaknesses. Instead of streaming, where students are labelled as sub-standard in education through their ability, classes should be about different subjects. If you can't do well at mathematics (people are already beginning to recognise that some suffer a form of mathematical dyslexia) then it should be identified and you should be taught especially well. Not talked down to about sid the dog at high school.

I think maths with Lucy Liu would be great.

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

2wenty 3hree

I hear you... despite some very interesting stuff at high school, there was an awful lot of irrelevant rubbish that could have been better spent teaching us things that we would need in the real world. Instead of "take our daughters to work day", why didn't they do "take our sons and daughters into a bank and show them how to cash a cheque, withdraw money and open an account"? Or "show our sons and daughters how to change a tyre, replace a fuse, do odd jobs around the house"?

Instead of making chocolate bars and watching videos on nutrition, Home Economics should have been called Cooking, and we should have been shown how to make basic meals, work with a budget and maximise ingredients. When my mum was in high school, there was a flat on the school grounds, and every weekend, two students were chosen to live there. They had to do all the housework, do the shopping on a budget and other little jobs, and then on sunday evening they had to prepare a meal for the headmaster and some other teachers. It's a fantastic idea! The trouble is the Left strangled it back in the 1970s for being sexist.

How about doing useful stuff in Textiles? Rather than make stupid trinkets that would never be used again, why weren't we taught to repair clothes, and use the sewing machines to repair curtains and make clothes? The only reason I remember Textiles at all is that, as you know, I once spent the entire lesson walking around the room, and seeing how far I could go without being caught. I can't remember how many laps I did, but it lasted the entire lesson.

Graphics was always good... we actually learned a lot of really useful things about technical drawing and elementary geometry.

Art similarly good... apart from the lessons when the scourge of our lives, Mrs Ryder, would fill in, and we would draw a load of pots and bottles on a table.

Drama was the biggest doss of all... there were a handful of lessons where we had to act Shakespeare, but much of it was just playing games and making up little acting things. Nonetheless, it was a good confidence builder, and I now use killer wink in some of my lessons here in Japan, and it works like a dream.

Music was always fun, and there was some good stuff early on about reading and writing music.

Science was genereally shite... we didn't get to study any of the interesting stuff (black holes, chaos theory, viruses, explosions) and Aldous treated us all like 5 year olds. I still maintain that I learned more about the three Sciences sat next to Max Dann in a Diss factory for a year than the 5 years of Double Everything.

English was good. There was plenty there to be learned.

Geography and History were both ok, although again we didn't get to study any of the really interesting things (tsunami, the history of the planet, Eastern History, the Victorian era).

Games was good... I loved playing all the sports, except Tennis (which we turned into... what? I can't remember the name... we used to blast balls at eachother and have a kind of war... can you remember the name?) and Gymnastics, which tended to involve rolling onto a mat and doing a few squat thrusts...

R.E was a mixed bag... it was pretty glossed over, but at least we got to learn a little about the other religions of the world, albeit a little superficially...

French and German were always entertaining, due to the antics of the students, and some of the lessons were occasionally interesting, but as a way of getting us to speak French and German they were awful... reading from a text book a daft conversation about you staying in Paris for the summer and offering to work in the local shop for free can't help you to learn a language.

Yeah, a lot of time was wasted at school. I sometimes think that we learned more at the summer garden parties, chess nights and Experience writings than we did in those classrooms...

Zwei und Zwanzig!!!

Yoyoyoyoyoyo... sorry that services are not as fluent as they maybe. I have been moving house...an activity new to the experience. There is something else that has changed i nthe last nine years!

Fucking bills!!
Fucking Driving licence!!
Fucking houses!!

GRRR!!!

You never learn about the important stuff in schoolio!!

Monday, July 25, 2005

21 - key to the door

Well finally! My beard has grown, the milk has started to curdle, my fingernails are longer... it's almost like old times, me waiting for you to reply... (takes off hat and salutes in true 17th Century Spanish courtly fashion)...

Now let's see... what would I like to see in the next 9 years... well:

- a complete turnaround in the British education system for one.
- decent bread in Japan.
- some decent Hollywood movies, and original ones, not remakes or sequels.
- Flick returning to Neighbours, and Neighbours being screened on Japanese TV.
- pickled eggs, custard and rice pudding getting the credit they deserve.

By the way, yesterday was a very important day in the annals of Hartismere history... for it was 14 years since we broke up for our first Summer holiday, way back at the end of year 7.

Twenty

Hey! I already posted a twenty! I did! the fecker didn't publish! There's definitely something thats changed in the last ten years! I've stopped worrying about the fact that if you type something it is not necessarily set in stone. If you write with a pen, your Experience remains at your side and any unauthorised additions show. ownership is proudly proclaimed in our own handwriting and pictures of fantastic babes (TM) that also clearly belong to us.

Isuggest that in another nine years, the world will have changed significantly again and think we should also compile a shortlist of events as e perceive happening in the future. or would like to see happening in the future.

I also suggest that J-lo, whilst bringing joy to many peoples snarling libido's around the world and the many women with fat asses that suddenly realized their heritage, and the fact she kicked ass in out of sight and the fact that I would quite happily choke the girl on her own luis vuitton belt just for being so damn Diva replaces the ever famous GOSCN? Or maybe the ever grinning Miss richards? One might argue that in Starship troopers she buggeth more than buggeth thought it could bug. However, she more than makes up for it in a certain scene in Wild things.

Thy suggestions? Quick before I turn thee into a dinosaur!

Thursday, July 21, 2005

19 green bottles..

160. The emergence of the first proper 3D 3rd person shooter (Unreal, 1997).
159. The rise of Beckham.
158. Decent personal computers.
157. Ahnuld as Governor of CA.
156. The once ambiguous name, Harry Potter.

18 with a bullet

165. The widescale slating of Coldplay as "tesco Rock" or "dad Rock" Which is a new thing in Britain. As the charts begin to fail, serious marketing moguls decide to shift the serious coporate mass-crowd pleasing same old easy listening shite through major superstores, leaving the little kids to spend their pennies elsewhere, leading to.....
164. That fucking frog. I don't even watch TV and already i'm sick of it. Apparently there are two adverts on per break, no matter what time of day or night it is. And it even beat coldplay to number one, leaving the dad rockers highly embarrassed.
163. The commercialization of Rap music to a whiter audience. Read "Eminem" and only listen to the first album. then go and buy Cage and non-phixion cos they be the real hip-hop!!
162. L'oreal revolutionary skin cream, claiming it can defy the ageing process, has been discovered to actually rot your flesh at a molecular level. apparently in ten years time there are going to be a lot of pampered women with faces like doctor meltskin!
161. Tins of beans for a penny. Legendary!

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Just 17

175. The death of Princess Diana.
174. The emergence of Dubya.
173. China's emergence as a global power.
172. A very crap period of music, c.1998-2000, which was mercifully lanced by the debut of Coldplay.
171. The all-conquering DVD, which was once just a passing fancy occupying half a shelf in HMV, and has now sent VHS shuffling into the bargain bin.
170. Air conditioning becoming standard in most new cars.
169. Almost every TV show in the UK now being sponsored (back in 1996 there were only a few indy-style shows that did this).
168. When the music died, so did TFI Friday.
167. Channel 5, which still hasn't sorted out it's terrestrial reception, 8 years on.
166. The three Star Wars prequels, which have done a lot to damage the reputation of the legacy and the patience and patronage of it's many fans.

Monday, July 18, 2005

Sweet Sixteen (Honest Guv, she said that she was!)

180 Steven Gerrard
179 The Rise and fall of Cool Britannia
178 The birth of Docusoap
177 The anticlimax that was the year 2000. Everyone paid three times what they normally would, I was the only person that seemed to have a good time and the world didn't explode.
176 I met a scandalous and beautiful Nurse in a bar in Norwich (this answer is strictly prompted and not necessarily world changing. It rocks my world though and she's going to buy me a ferrari apparently. She's so cool!!)

Friday, July 15, 2005

15 (to 1, with that bastard William G Stewart)

190. The League of Gentlemen have taken comedy to a new level.
189. September the 11th has significance.
188. Gary Glitter is disgraced.
187. Jonathon King is disgraced.
186. R Kelly is (virtually) disgraced.
185. Teenagers don't know who Mark Morrison is.
184. Big Brother.
183. Pete Sampras is no longer the king of Wimbledon.
182. The Williams sisters have changed women's tennis forever.
181. Alicia Silverstone is unheard of.

14

195. Opal fruits are now called "Starburst"
194. The Sunny Delight phenomenon
193. Rambo 2, which used to be a film about the American Superhero helping out a small incursionist force fight the communist menace, is now rather embarrasing because the small incursionist force in question is the Taliban.
192. Teenage Girls now think "C'mon baby light my fire" was written by the bastard Gareth gates
191. Mars Bars are now smaller and more expensive.

Bakers Dozen

Whilst I can't say I ever had a crush on Hargadon, it can't be denied that she had the whole "sex is power" thing going on. True, there were no young attractive teachers when we were there... the youngest was probably Miss Tombs, but dandruff and grease were never my thing.

Ahh, the world.. how it changes! Let's make a list of how the world has changed in 9 years... let's think of 200 things, and write them down... I'll start us off...

200. Richard Whitely is dead.
199. Labour are in power.
198. The internet is all encompassing.
197. Saddam Hussein is deposed.
196. Everyone has a mobile phone.

Thursday, July 14, 2005

Twelve High

Holy shit, the things that have passed in nine years. Hells, the world is a different place but nine years has passed fucking slowly and thats no lie. Right now, I'm playing top trumps in the front room of my friends house and watching the shocking TV's Naughtiest blunders (which is STILL on TV and always will be) and nine years haven't fucking touched me. I still slack with the best of them. Better in many cases and I still manage to hold down a job I hate. Already I sat amidst a Sales meeting and it became clear that everyone deserves this career a lot more than I. They all know each other and go out drinking with one another and work really hard whereas I spend most of my time thinking about lying americans and scandalous asses and how nice it is to be me. It's like being inside a hall of mirrors and half the time, it seems like everyone is hoping that that pile of big shiny dollary will suddenly materialise in their pockets and haul them out of their miserable world. Meanwhile I couldn't give two pins and enjoy writing to my friend a billion meteres away, refelcting on science lessons and just how shit the girls experience actually was. So shit in fact that it needs to be found and burned. Twice. I'm drunk and this has to be the first time the generic crapness of East anglia has had such a diverse effect upon my wanton ramblings. Fuck it. Red shoes was a fucking hippy and hargadon scared the shit out of me, even though you had a crush on her. I think the worst thing about hartismere was that there was noone to develop a crush on. but with the likes of Cat and CTSB, KTSB and the excrutiator, who the feck needed a teacher student relationship?

Legs 11

Sounds like just another imitation that relied on a superficial gimmick and soon disappeared by the wayside. Again, the girl's experience must be mentioned (note the lack of capitals), for it was the prime example of an attempt to gain fame on the back of our esteemed tome. I can still see Laura and Jessica in Science, holding the very crisp rough book and making sure I could see the colourfully written title on the front cover, complete with flower designs. It could only fail. As you said, it was a place where about four girls could write about cds, boybands and Just 17 gossip. What had we to fear? Fuck all! The Experience had stories, philosophy, poetry and was a place where you could vent your spleen without fear of repurcussions or judgements. Teenage years are full of angst and pent up feelings, so in many ways we were giving an outlet to that.

It is a shame that it has taken 9 years for the Experience to resurface, for it is sorely needed in this day and age.

10 Green Bottles

Oh oh oh oh oh ho ho ho ho ho!! The Akers and Pickle Guide....A document worthy of perhaps a merry laddish chuckle upon a thursday eve, 'twas highly secretive and some suspected was a guide to "getting some" and shared various ideas of stalwart gentlemanry and chap rules. It was abandoned as an inferior document to the experience because both authors preferred the experience and the freedom it provided as opposed to standard rambling and appalling toilet humour!

Revolution no. 9

Indeed I am, and proud to boot...

I have to confess that I'm intrigued by your mention of The Pickle and Akers Guide in an earlier post. I distantly remember that "Red Boots" McGeever confiscated it during maths once, but that's all I know about this mysterious document. Can you shed any more light on it? What things were discussed in this guide? How long did it last?

G8

Well, we've reached golden "8" PS: You are a fluffy white Gonad called "Fllebbard"!!

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

7

Yeah, commercialization is slowly killing the country. Having been in Japan for a year and a half, I'm not sure if things in England are the same, but around the time that I left a new fad was a mobile phone that looked like an electronic organiser, and allowed you to write text messages whilst you were speaking on the phone. Surely this symbolizes the very worst aspect of the modern society - we are not talking to eachother meaningfully, face to face, anymore. I can't think of many things more annoying than when you are talking to someone, and they break off to look at a text message. And now, even the superficial, faux communication over the phone is being affected. (As a quick aside, I can't fathom the fascination with mobile phone ringtones. If they were free, fair enough but when you have to pay upwards of £1.50 for an annoyingsynthesizedd tune that makes you appear like a prize teat it makes me shake my head in sheer disbelief.)
You hit the nail on the head, Diamond. We are becoming lazy and subservient, just so the stock of a few corporations will go up a tenth of a percent. Money is what rules the world, and I for one want to beat my fists with despair.
I live in Japan, where conservatism in the workplace is king, even in this age of green haired teenagers andAmericanization. But the same things happen all over the modernized world, including England. Money is the drum beat to which we are all blindly, unwittingly, moving.
I'm glad that you brought up banking, because it's got to be one of the worst aspects of 21st century England. If you are overdrawn by a few pennies, you are unable to take out any money at a cash machine. However, the bank will gladly send you a letter, informing you that you are overdrawn, and charge you a nominal fee, thus overdrawing you further. Should you try to contact your bank to sort this out, you find that your bank doesn't have a phone number. You speak to a recorded message, and are encouraged to visit your branch. So you do, and find that it is ludicrously busy, with only one window out of five being open, despite this being lunchtime and the busiest time of the day.
I used internet banking for a few years, if only because it meant that I didn't have to face the hassle of going to the bank and beingpatronizedd and treated like an idiot. My wages were paid into my account, I checked the balances on the net, and took money from the cash point and often used my debit card in shops. This is all very convenient, but it's just another example of people being manipulated into spending more money and becoming docile and easy to bend and shape. I was always very careful with my money in England, but it would have been so easy to rack up debts on my credit card, and succumb to all those in store special offers that seem like good deals but really just end up costing you money. We are encouraged to "take advantage of" special deals, but of course we are the ones who are being played.
Living simply and contentedly is very difficult to achieve, as you touched on. To live in a quiet place surrounded by nature, to eat healthy food, to spend time with friends and family. These are all very difficult to do. The fact that eating junk food is cheaper and easier than eating organic fruit and vegetables should be keeping everyone awake at night, but I fear that it isn't.

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

^^^6^^^

Too right. The thing that gets to me is the gradual commercialization of everything. The laziness that is encouraged. The "accessories" that make life easier but are billed as necessities in this new and golden age. The problem is that these things aren't protested and are gradually accepted as part of our way of life. Nobody stands up for the smaller specialty businesses that are swept away by the larger coporate chains that cater to a mass market, meaning that generally everything isn't crap, but it ain't exactly great either and all in the name of cheaper running shoes.
Previously well run services (like the trains and the buses) have been privatised and are now crap. I regularly have to wait an hour or more for my train home, meaning more time out of my day, meaning I'm more stressed and tired by the time i get back, meaning Irush my dinner and have to run over to see one of my many girlfriends, who invariably shout at me for being late, then you have to do the whole making up thing before getting down to the serious business. Bear in mind that if the train was on time, i could have been doing the serious business since 6 o'clock and making it last a few hours. By the time you get around there at seven, having eaten a ham sandwich, you have no energy and the arguments deplete it even further. You performance is notably below par, which causes further arguments and you have to either sleep on the couch or make up for it meaning you don't get to sleep until at least 4 am with terrible jawache. Waking up at 6am to catch a train that runs at 8 oclock sucks. But the buses are really unreliable, so you have to make sure you arrive at the station about half an hour early and then sit about for a while waitng for your train. Then the train is delayed and you've spent almost three hours just getting to work at 9 when it normally takes 20 minutes at any other time in the day. You get to work with drooping eyes and a slack jaw and your boss thinks you are stoned and gives you a disciplinary, meaning your performance drops along with your enthusiasm, then you lose the big distribution account and you gety fired by old man hadley. Before you know it you can't pay the bills and paying overdue bills has to be the hardest thing to do in Britain. Unless you have forms signed in triplicate to prove that you aren't Zalasmy Smeghead, you have to go to court or pay a perishing £258.97 of electricity that you didn't use. Then you just pay it, but claiming the money back is even harder and the bank charges you for going overdrawn, then charges you for receiving a charge for going overdrawn. You phone the bank to explain that the electricity board was supposed to refund the money and they say fuck you it's not our problem. get them to write to us in pakistan and we will look at the account. You phone the electricity board and they say in order to get a letter written you have to have a letter from the bank (which the bank will charge you thirty pounds for) and you have to make another phone call to pakistan (probably holding for around 30 minutes at peak time which will cost you about seven pounds-non refundable) and so on and so on. I hope that one day....well actually there is nothing that can change these terrible trends as they are already accepted as part of our everday world. Already people cannot live without their mobiles or their cars. It is accepted. Gym membership, ringtones, designer lables, create your own personal lifestyle. Buy yourself a personality, and pay a monthly subscription for the privelege because you can't just exist and make your own way in the world.

Britain profits from being in the middle of all the politics and all the finanacial shit between the US and Europe, but I'm hoping one day China decides to go as aggressive as the US and we all have to live on a bowl of rice a day. All I ever wanted to do was walk and fish in the sunshine, then go back to a nice little house, play with my children and then have sex with my beautifful wife before wandering into town as the sunsets to play guitar and sip wine with my amigos.

IS THAT TOO MUCH TO ASK?!?!?!?!?!

In this land of opportunity it is so hard to do the things we want and you have to ask yourself, if we all want freedom and peace, why are they the hardest things to achieve.

5

Good question... I think the idea of hope and glory more relevant than at first appears. England is full of hope, hope that things will improve (the transport system, education, healthcare), although these tend to be individual hopes, and I wonder whether we English have the inner drive and passion to make things change, rather than just talking about change. And there is glory to be found (the sleepy contemplation of the countryside, the mercifully mild summers, the dawn chorus of the birds), although again these take the form of a very personal, insular kind of glory.

Air Strip One? Yes, for the time being. As part of the United Kingdom, England is literally the stepping stone between the USA and Europe, and is a tactical political and geographical lodestone for both parties. Due to the USA being the most powerful country in the world, and England owing it a moral and monetary debt for World War II, England has continued to be in pawn to it's larger ally for the last 50+ years. And as the USA needs to stroke Europe and keep it onside, it naturally uses England's postition to do this.

What do you think?

Monday, July 11, 2005

'04 on the floor

Jaysis, it feels good to experience the experience again. To think that once I just had to push this across the table underneath your fingers and pen nib to get you to reply. ;-)

Illegal rave. As expected it was a little shite and *suprise suprise* no squarepusher, as the wang soundsystem mysteriously didn't turn up. What a load of fucking shit. Hauled me out into the thetford forest wilderness to go stand in a field with a load of people off their cake in various amusing ways and somehow it still manages to be mediocre and exveryone is convinced that it's fantastic. I'm not a snob, it's just that it becomes obvious that a bare minimum of effort is made to organise the events, they aren't as well planned as some of the lower key events in London and Manchestie that I have attended and everyone seems so satisfied with less. Ming the Merciless would be very proud.

Sour Urchins and sea snails? sounds like breakfast at the Annis household!! Nice to know that the tradition of flaming perfectly good food into carbon substitute occurs all around the world. Also nice to know that Japanese are thoughtful enough to point out that it is raining, in England people just laugh at you, or worse still smirk from their BMW. I was walking back from Helm's a few weeks back and it was quite literally torrential rain in the middle of June. I was wearing a T-shirt and getting soaked by freezing rain and hail and the cars whizzed by and beeped their horns. Fucking bastards.

Also ate some fine shrooms on Sunday and wandered around the UEA park astounded by flora and fauna alike. Dogs seemed really happy and smiley in the sunshine and joggers and puffing power walkers wondered why two young men were staring up a tree for fifteen minutes. Eventally we settled by the lake and watched the sky go all wibbly. In two weeks time a naturally growing fungus is to be made illegal in this country. It occurs naturally, yet it is to be made illegal. How odd is that? Not only illegal, but it's going to be reclassified as class A, which is the same as cocaine and heroin. What a load of shit. Anyways...as you can see I am rambling, the Exeperience marked itself apart from other lesser publications such as the Pickle and Akers Guide and the infuriatingly annoying girls experience (How many times can a bunch of girls talk about shopping and how sexy I am within the pages of one rough book....Jesu!) by having set things to rant about, arguments if you will, where devils advocacy and extremity of opinion are encouraged without fear of reproach or vindictive reprisals. Such freedom of speech was never publicly available to the children of our smalltown school and I like to think that it changed a few of us forever, so here to kick things off, I presume that the first argument to be had in '05 is one that has been bugging us for ages.


------*----Argument 1----*----
England: Land of hope and Glory or Airstrip one?

3

Well, of course the events you have already said are foremost in my mind... however, on a domestic front, here are the things that made it a memorable week for me:

- My school's sports festival, where things like this happened.

- Eating, quite reluctantly, sea snails and sour urchins at Yoko's parents' barbecue.

- When my "mama-chari" bicycle (old lady style bicycle) broke down during a heavy downpour, during which I had no umbrella, and had to repair it on the street, whilst passing Japanese housewives helpfully told me that it was raining and I was getting wet.

Now for this week... as I write this, I am watching the sumo on tv, and looking forward to cheap bowling tonight. The heady aroma of coffee is in the air, and I have a strange urge to watch Mad Max 2...

How was the rave, Diamond? It may surprise you to know that I have never been to one. Do tell.

2

Aye, I am well...on a week that saw Steven Gerrard make the boldest move in modern football, London win the bid for the Olympics in 2012 and then subsequently explode in a swathe of terrorist bombings...meanwhile here in Norwich (Note to Americans-not London) I am currently enjoying a fine cup of tea, the sun has finally come out and I'm off to see squarepusher at an illegal rave in Thetford forest later on. What makes this week a historic week for you?

Thursday, July 07, 2005

1

Welcome to the first entry in the new and improved - and for the first time, online - Experience! What began as a way to pass time during year 8 modern language classes in high school has now evolved into a blog that traverses the continents and unites, at least to begin with, England and Japan!

Without further ado, I shall pass the shoe as it were to my very good friend and co-founder of the Experience, James "Darkhouse" Diamond, who is busy working in an English office. Diamond! How are you?