the 'troubled' tag

Collective: Amy Winehouse in 2003
The BBC's largely user content motivated culture site recently closed but the archive is still up and includes gems such as this interview with Winehouse when she was only 19 and still starting out in the business. The featured live performance video reminds us that behind the 'troubled' tag she's been given by the tabloid is one of our great singers. The forum comments are very poignant.

Some of the World's Strangest Fences

McCain's VP Wants Creationism Taught in School
I bookmarked this before tonight's announcement. Taking a look at the photographs I posted about yesterday, of course she's pregnant in them, or at the very least trying to make it less obvious with the scarf and wearing black. Barack's response is perfectly pitched too: "Let me be as clear as possible... I think people's families are off limits and people's children are especially off limits." If I was an undecided and my decision was purely on the basis on how well the two sides were running their campaign, let alone the issues, I'd say the Democrats would be swaying me at the moment.

Charles van Commenee to take up baton for Britain
Like football managers, even the heads of athletic squads can be replaced it seems if the team's not doing so well. Commanee's a task master -- even when she won Bronze in Athens he offered harsh worlds to Kelly Sotherton when he was coaching her. Will our runners and throwers respond to tough love?

Even more live music in new schedule for Radio 3
There was a fair about of tetchiness when the new controller of the station announced that all of the concerts in the Performance slot would be pre-recorded -- some of the letters to Radio 4's Feedback were downright nasty! But I agreed with them all -- the taped version of the programme lacks the atmosphere gained by a presenter if not being there at least having the sounds of the audience behind them as happens with the Proms. They could just as well be playing cds sometimes. Great news, then, and an acknowledgement that to some extent the experiment hasn't worked. Note though that it is still only thirty and from the BBC's own orchestras.

Obituary: Ken Campbell
I've been a bit out of it, so imagine the shock when I had to read this in an RSS feed this morning. Ken's one of my favourite performers, one of Doctor Who's nearly men, there wasn't a form of performance he couldn't or didn't achieve. As Michael Billington says, he is truly irreplaceable.

Opinion: Can Blockbuster be saved?
There are some useful ideas in here -- scrapping the genre arrangement and simply using alphabetical order amongst the most sensible -- but I don't know that it can. Having been the market leader for so long it's find it difficult in a more crowded market, where it's almost as cheap to buy a film as travel to Blockbuster and rent it for one night and where people are patient enough to wait the extra couple of months for it to be in pay-per-view (should they have the technology) or for it to turn up through Livefilm/Netflix.

Panel Beating : Relaunch Issues
Noise To Signal analyses pointless instances of renaming, renumbering and reimagining in comics of the kind which simply seem designed to piss off collectors just trying to work out a way of storing their collection. I'm sure there's money to be made by someone who designs a classification system for comics and graphic novels which takes into account both chronology and the desperation to alphabetise.

Have you ever seen Christian Bale and Kermit the Frog in the same room together?

Publisher admits errors in 'damaging' age banding row
Would this have happened if an independent body, in other words a BBFC for words and pages, had taken up this challenge rather than a publisher themselves?

Finally, though this isn't quite as entertaining as the famous Jim'll of the cub scouts and their packed lunches, here's a video of some horrendously drunk Hollywood animators on a roller coaster. According to the imdb, the shooter, Jim Baker worked at Disney in the late 90s and was most recently a senior on Beowolf.

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