Friday, January 16, 2004

Well I'm back within a week, that's not too bad.

Developments over the past few days are as follows:

My right foot hurts following a game of squash on Monday that caused an enormous blister to form and then burst during the match. In the latter part of the game I could feel a flap of skin hanging off. Mmm, nice. Good game though.

I've taken up swimming moderately regularly over the past few months and while I can currently still only do breaststroke I am at least much better at it now. I can get my head under the water and everything. Having decided that I'm now fairly committed to continuing swimming I decided to order some prescription goggles online on Wednesday. And they arrived in the post yesterday - very impressive service. So I'll be trying those out this morning. I'm enjoying the swimming much more now I feel I'm better at it. For quite a while it was mainly just some extra exercise to try to combat the effects of sitting on my arse all day for a living: I'd enjoy an increased sense of well-being afterwards but the actual swimming itself was rather boring. Now I feel pretty good while I'm actually in the pool too (possibly the fact that I'm overtaken by pensioners less often helps a bit) and with my groovy new goggles I'll actually be able to see too. Now won't that be something.

Work-wise I finished a cover for the Horrible Histories mag (a googly-eyed Spanish inquisition scene) and accepted a couple of commissions from them for spot illustrations ("Awful Ancients" - various Mesopotamian shenanigans). Good to have a bit on again after a very quiet spell over Christmas (though at least this year I was half expecting it). Also took on a small commission from Brian Holmes at Loaf, the design company that does work for/shares offices with my girlfriend's employers. I'll maybe talk more about that when I get the brief.

Saw Kill Bill last night. Odd film. Enjoyed bits of it a lot but the movie as a whole is a rather (deliberately?) ragged piece of work, as if Tarantino wants to destroy his audience's expectations of him: oddly poor dialogue, as if he's trying to emulate that of the dodgy martial arts action movies that inspired him; over the top gore effects - lots of severed limbs with Pythonesque gushes of blood; one or two jarringly edited cuts to the soundtrack. And the decision to put it out in two parts really does seem something of a liberty. Oh well, it just about gets by on verve and style but it's hardly the fulfilment of QT's early promise.

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