Monday, September 17, 2012

The Beatherder Festival 2012 Review (If you can call it a review)

I thoroughly recommend the Beatherder Festival in lovely Lancashire. Great music, great atmosphere and great people.

Beatherder even has a small tunnel, which should excite all you fellow underground gadabouts. They actually call it a teleportation portal but I have my doubts. For one thing, casually having teleportation technology in a music festival is a bit too much to believe. And the teleportation itself is not instant; it seems to take about as long as it would take you to crawl through the teleportation tunnel. And on top of all that, the teleportation process itself feels alot like crawling through a tunnel.

I spoke to the chap manning the exit about my concerns but he assured me that it was a fully functioning teleportation device. He spoke with an air of authority and had one of those high-viz jackets on so I believed him. Since then I've been having my doubts so I think I'll have another go next year before coming to a firm conclusion. Try it for yourself and let me know your findings.

I even met my Top Twin on the last day of the festival which capped off an excellent weekend. I was walking past this chap, and I did a double-take - he had the same jacket as me. Amazing story, eh? But it gets better - we started talking and he even had the same name as me. I don't mean he was called the Big Cheese Badger, that would be ridiculous, there is only one Big Cheese Badger. No, I mean his name was the same as the other name I sometimes go by, the ever-so-slightly less exciting one. Anyway, quality chap.

So who's coming next year then? If the teleportation tunnel and the prospect of meeting your top twin doesn't convince you to come then I don't know what will. Oh yeah, maybe all the other great stuff going on there which I have merely alluded to. But I think I'll leave some other sensible reviewer to talk about all that. I'm far too busy at the moment trying to burp the alphabet. Britain's Got Talent here I come.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

After The Apocalypse

I saw this rather moving True Stories documentary on More4 last year but you can still watch it on 4od.

It focuses on the people of "The Polygon" region of Kazakhstan as they struggle with the consequences of nuclear bomb testing from the Soviet era. One in twenty children are now born with defects. Bibigul is one such resident and she fights for her right to have a child.

I have transcribed below a speech by Bibigul's mother, which I found rather moving; almost primitive but so eloquent at the same time.

It is better to lie under the ground than to be laughed at by people. A figure of fun. Everybody makes fun of me. People on the street. People walking by. It doesn’t matter. It is better to leave this world.

I am angry that I am not lying under the black earth. That is the only thing I am angry about. I want the black earth.

For the last ten to fifteen years they have been chasing me. But forget about me. They have started to chase my daughters now, both of them. Pestering her everywhere.

I am a Polygon victim. She is a Polygon victim too. All she wants is to have a baby. So why don’t they just ignore the fact that she is from the Polygon and just let her give birth.

Watching harrowing documentaries such as this puts most of the problems we have in our comfortable lives into perspective.