AnthroBlog

Thursday, February 28, 2002

WHAT'S ON MY TABLE: yes, by popular demand, here is the next installment of my attempt to list my life. This time the objects on my sitting room/kitchen table. I should start by pointing out that the table is circular, with a tiled surface [one of those mock Moroccan tables].
1] White phone: one of those cheap plastic BT phones [the handset can be removed from the charging platform].
2] Box of tissues: cardboard box of white tissues, with shell motif on sides.
3] Vase: blue and white tall ceramic jug with ear-shaped handle. The jug has 12 yellow/red stem roses in it [now faded and drooping], left over from Valentines.
4] Laptop: my old Toshiba laptop.
5] Folders: three cloudy white transparent ring folders and a teaching manual on media teaching [my partner is training to be an English teacher] sit on the lap top.
6] Filofax: old brown filofax ['The Kensington' no less].
7] Spectacle case: tin case, empty of glasses [with the title 'French Connection vision' printed on the top].
8] Makeup pouch: small Liberty bag, holding makeup stuff: a mirror in its own muslin draw string bag, blusher, lipstick [red], eyelash definer, a pair of scissors, twizzers, hair band, lip liner, blusher brush, concealer and a small instrument I can't identify [will get back to you on that one... ].
9] Lamp: small green and metal desk lamp.
10] Candles: four aromatherapy candles, transparent but in coloured glass dishes [3 green and 1 blue]. The candles are stacked one ontop of the other.
11] Mail: 2 pieces of mail [both for my partner and unopened]. One is her latest subscription copy of the London Review of Books, the other is a mysterious small white parcel, with a positing address from London.
12] Match box: silver cardboard box of matches, indented with word OXO [I think it was nicked from bar at the top of OXO Tower ages back].
13] Bowl: ceramic Moroccan bowl, two shades of pink [I got the bowl fifteen years ago when I went to Marrakech]. The bowl is full of things, from the top down: one Sony discman, last bill from Safeway, timetable for local gym, North West London bus guide, WAGN train timetable for Liverpool St to Stanstead Airport line, more info on gym, invitation to 30th birthday party, yellow postit notepad, North East London bus guide, leaflet on Yoga Alternative Therapies centre, programme schedule for ENO, card for Lebanese restaurant [the Fairuz off Marylebone High St, recommended], programme schedule for Almeida theatre, leaflet for Sharmanka Kinetic Gallery [an exhibit at the National Theatre], a pink Haribo sweet packet cut to take the shape of girl's pants [a goodbye gift from the pupils of my partner's last teaching assignment], booklet on mortgages from the Halifax, card for hairdresser [with name Wendy written on it], card for Georgian restaurant in Hackney, torn out piece of note paper with my handwriting with new home phone number on it, card for vegetatian Indian restaurant [Rasa, recommended], card for locksmith on Church St in Stoke Newington, card for insurance company, my password card for a cybercafe, card of the estate agent that manages the flat we rent, card for restaurant never been to in Church St [expensive but highly recommended], same card again for vegetarian Indian restaurant, smaller yellow posit notepad, card for local cab company, pair of keys, two paperclips, three coins [2 brown, 1 silver].
contact me
posted by adam 5:03 PM

Tuesday, February 26, 2002

8LETTERS: just back from coffee and chat with Iain of 8letters. Found the discussion really interesting [thanks Iain]. The conversation got me thinking about who one writes for when blogging; the different audiences we address our postings to. Is there anybody you wouldn't want to read your web log? contact me
posted by adam 10:05 PM

OH DEAR: more bad news (via Marcia):
Businessman Holding a Computer Voodoo Doll

Businessman Holding a Computer Voodoo Doll
I'm angry at something. Obviously. Trust me, it's not always a good thing. Maybe it's my internet connection speed, maybe my bedside (or in-bed) manner, maybe my selection of music...whatever it is, I'm angry at life and something's got to change before I destory someone (or something). Anger management recommended.

What piece of photography are you?

Find out at The Stock Photo Quiz.


posted by adam 3:43 PM

WHO STOLE MY HAIR: strange story from the far east of Russia. Women are having their hair cut with razors and stolen from them as they stand in crowded trams! Apparently, the Russian mop is the best you can get for hair extensions and wigs. contact me
posted by adam 3:34 PM

WHO STOLE MY HAIR: strange story from the far east of Russia. Women are having their hair cut with razors and stolen from them as they stand in crowded trams! Apparently, the Russian mop is the best you can get for hair extensions and wigs. contact me
posted by adam 3:34 PM

Sunday, February 24, 2002

THE SPORTSWRITER: I know I am many years out of date, but just finished reading Richard Ford novel The Sportswriter. Completely brilliant! contact me
posted by adam 11:35 AM

THE HOURS: well had good day yesterday. It started off with one of my favourite walks: from Upper St, Islington, down past Saddlers Wells, into Clerkenwell, up Cowcross St and into visit one of my favourite churches in Smithfield [St Bartholomew], then down past St Pauls and over the Millenium bridge [finally!] to the TateModern . Have to say the bridge does sway alot less than the last time I went on it; and that despite the fact a real wind was up on the Thames yesterday. Then walked over Hungerford Bridge and up to Shaftesbury Avenue to Curzon Soho. The movie was good [not brilliant], a bit too much of an excuse for a star vehicle for me [it features three stories of three women, played by Nicole Kidman as Virginia Woolf, Meryl Streep and Juliana Moore] though. I liked the book, but found the movie didn't really succeed in conveying that quality of quietness that pervades the novel. Partly because the director [Stephen Daldry of Billy Elliot fame] does not yet know how to use the camera to tell a story. He is strong on characterisation, but fails to make the landscape [and objects] of the film tell the story; what movies are all about after all. Anyway worth seeing, but nothing special. contact me
posted by adam 11:27 AM

Friday, February 22, 2002

SERENDIPITY: must relate a bit of good fortune that came my way last week. Met up with S in coffee shop on Tottenham Court Road, where we decide to go and see what films are on at the Curzon Soho. When we get there, we find there is nothing we fancy seeing, but on way out I get approached by a blond woman [with a stranger resemblance to Cate Blanchett] with a red clipboard. Thinking this is another market research questionnaire on my favourite yoghurt or something, I am reluctant to chat. But turns out she is offering me free tickets to a pre-preview showing of the film adaptation of Michael Cunningham's book The Hours [a book I liked]. This is one of these focus group viewings, where afterwards we get asked for our opinion of what we have seen. What could be better: free film tickets and the chance to voice my stupid opinions! These moments make life worth living I think; like winning a prize in a raffle [it doesn't matter what the prize is, its just that feeling of finally getting something]. So I am off to see the film tomorrow. contact me
posted by adam 7:23 PM

ROMAN HOLIDAY: hi! just back from short week in Rome for much needed break. It was my second trip there and I really love the place. Spent alot of time doing nothing much: reading novels, sleeping, idling in cafes etc. Especially enjoyed going to the forum, but also the protestant cemetery [with graves of Keats, Shelley, Gramsci]: beautifully landscaped with wonderfully scupted tomb stones, cypress trees, palms and a strange antique stone pyramid; and lots of cats. Great place to sit and read. One odd discovery for me was the lack of places in the city to just sit around and lounge; in the cafes people tend to stand and sip down their espresso and then leave [not like your Parisian cafes or the coffee bar trend in London]. In fact I never really discovered where poeple go to meet and just chat or idle away hours [in the summer I suppose everyone is outside]; does anyone know? contact me
posted by adam 7:10 PM

Friday, February 15, 2002

ABOUT ME PAGE: question: if everyone took their 'about me' page off their blog, how would this effect your reading of web logs? contact me
posted by adam 5:01 PM

THE ISLAND: last night saw this revival of Athol Fugard play at the Old Vic . Really enjoyed it. The play is set on Robben Island prison, and largely takes place in the prison cell of two political prisoners from the ANC [it is a two man play]. I thought they managed to convey a real sense of the claustrophobia and repetition of prison life; the beginning of the play has ten minutes without a word spoken, just the actions and sounds of the two men working on the chain gang in the prison quarry! Great performances. Go see if you can. contact me
posted by adam 4:56 PM

ABRAXAS: thanks to Cath for agreeing to meet and talk about her blog. I really enjoyed the talk; it was good to meet a web logger who has only recently started. I like her blog; I think it will qucikly take off. It was also kind of interesting to meet a web logger who has yet to meet [offline] other web loggers [my first I think]. contact me
posted by adam 4:45 PM

Wednesday, February 13, 2002

COMPETITION FOR GROTTIEST BRANCH OF LlOYDS BANK: I have a nomination: the branch on Stoke Newington High Street; the carpet always looks dirty, there is no space for customers to fill in forms, no seats, too few cashiers etc. What annoys me most is that it is clear that Lloyds have made a calculated decision not to refurbish the branch because it is not a wealthy area! Bastards! contact me
posted by adam 6:15 PM

MULTIPLE BLOGS: from interviews I notice that it seems to be a growing phenomenon for web loggers to have more than one web log, and in particular to have some that are kept as private documents or alternatively are published as public documents anonymously. How many blogs do you have? contact me
posted by adam 6:10 PM

Tuesday, February 12, 2002

WHAT'S ON MY DESK: I have always been intrigued by the action of listing. So in that spirit I begin a project to list the objects in my spaces. First off, my desk:
1] A paper holder: sprung metal clip shaped as an owl, holding various papers [a letter, two reviews of a essay I submitted to a journal, a bank statement, jottings on a pice of A4].
2] A candle lamp: overstylised, white ceramic hexagon.
3] A plastic box: transparent top and black bottom [holding multi-coloured board pins].
4] A stapler: red, shiny plastic.
5] My laptop computer: a Toshiba Portege 7200 series.
6] Several cassettes: taped interviews waiting to be transcribed.
7] Pocket torch: black metal torch with a broken bulb [it is there to remind me to buy a new bulb].
8] A lamp: grey plastic desk lamp with short neck [wrapped around its base is some shell money from Papua New Guinea, given as a gift by a friend].
9] Some photos: photos sent by my mother from my visit home to New Zealand.
10] A CD: a CD of Ali Farka Toure which I got my girlfriend for Xmas, but which she already had [Oops!].
11] A notepad: Xmas stocking present with tacky printed title at the top of each sheet of blue paper: 'This is a note from a drop-dead gorgeous male'.
12] An I-Zone camera: recent purchase.
13] Tape recorder: old steel and black hand held Sony machine used for recording interviews.
14] Papers: various array of A4 sheets of paper, mostly there because I am in the middle of revising an essay.
15] Pen: lovely chunky Soft-feel Jumbo Bic.
That's it. contact me
posted by adam 11:51 AM

Sunday, February 10, 2002

WHICH STAR-CROSSED MARVEL LOVER AM I? Rogue eh. I guess I am pleased!



Which Star-Crossed Marvel Lover Are You?


thanks to Dan for this one. contact me
posted by adam 6:56 PM

GOSFORD PARK: last night saw the new Altman film. Must say it was strange to see Atlman's ensemble style of improvised film making transposed to the aristocratic stately home. But I loved it! There was incredible energy in the direction and editing; especially the ways in which he managed to interweave lifes above and below stairs. I also liked the transAtlantic conversation that was going on throughout. What with The House Of Mirth and Time Regained, costume dramas are suddenly becoming interesting again on film. contact me
posted by adam 6:14 PM

Friday, February 08, 2002

PISSING ON THE WRONG WALL: extraordinary story of the Cleveland police chief who goes to Lithuania to advise local police on ethics and is caught on CCTV pissing on the palace wall! Poor guy has to resign. What a way to go! contact me
posted by adam 9:01 PM

RAY [S]MEARS: I watched old Ray cut through the bush and mountains of NZ last night. Despite his image as the extreme survival expert, he seemed to spend most of his time eating and talking about other people's survival stories. Watch as Ray teaches the Maori how to relearn their old ancestral fire lighting skills! Watch as Ray eats! Watch as Ray flies in a helicopter! Watch as Ray eats! Watch as Ray shoots a deer! Watch as Ray eats!... contact me
posted by adam 11:51 AM

TRAIN STRIFE: I remain constantly amazed at just what a terrible service SouthWest trains provides. Having to go back and forth to Guildford regularly, it is simply a waste of time trying to plan your journey by the timetable. It makes me MAD! contact me
posted by adam 11:42 AM

Tuesday, February 05, 2002

GOMEZ: no doubt I am hopelessly out of date, but just wanted to say how much I am enjoying Gomez's first album Bring It On . Warms the soul. contact me
posted by adam 5:36 PM

OBJECTIFICATION: theory of material culture [Miller]: we externalise our selves through objects: suffer alienation and then sublation. Sounds too obvious but what about web logs? How does the web log act as an objectification of self? How does the matter of that media affect the presentation? Does the web log serve a desire to see ourselves externalised in objects [in this case electronic form]? blah-blah-blah contact me
posted by adam 5:32 PM

Monday, February 04, 2002

LINKMACHINEGO: just spent pleasant evening chatting to Darren about his site and all things web logging. It was really helpful to get a sense of the UK history of web logging. Thanks. contact me
posted by adam 11:22 PM

Friday, February 01, 2002

SO WHO IS REBECCA BLOOD?: I see that the author of Rebecca's Pocket is bringing out two books on web logging this year: one a hand book on web logging and the other a cultural history. It will be good to see some literature on web logging come out; in particular from someone who blogs themselves. contact me
posted by adam 11:40 PM

BUMPING INTO DRAGONTHIEF: getting off the 73 at Stokey I met Michael. Both of us worse for wear from beer, Michael proceeded to introduce himself to the woman standing next to me [a complete stranger to both of us], thinking she was my partner. Took a while to work out neither of us knew each other! Anyway, good to bump into him. contact me
posted by adam 11:10 PM

HAPPY BIRTHDAY: one year happy birthday congratulations to Jonathan and his blog. contact me
posted by adam 4:33 PM

NEW MEDIA WHORE: I've been trying to think about the culture of work in the new media. In particular, the popularity among web loggers of describing themselves as 'new media whores' or noomeejahoor. Is the phrase 'whore' something taken from the free lance culture in new media? contact me
posted by adam 3:09 PM

LIMING: reading an ethnography of internet use in Trinidad, I was interested in the way in which that activity is represented as a continuity of Trinidadian social forms. In particular, chat rooms and discussion forums are represented as 'liming': the Trinidadian custom of hanging out on street corners, swapping banter and stories. Once again the Internet seems to invite spatial idioms, especially those related to urban spaces and encounters. contact me
posted by adam 3:01 PM

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My blog, my blog on blogging

Me
I am a social anthropologist working at the University of Surrey, but conducting research on the culture of web logging in London. Since August 2001, I have been reading web logs and interviewing members of the UK blogging community. AnthroBlog is first and foremost my web log, but it also a site where I hope to explore ongoing issues and themes of fieldwork. I welcome any comments or inquiries from UK web loggers interested in being involved.contact me

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