Turning 23

On December 27 I’ll be 23…

… It’s not considered a landmark year, but the last 12 months have been so erratic, it seems to feel a bit more significant. I’m in my third office in a year (Sky this time, after a great six months at Channel 4) and things are finally settling down a bit. I’m also enjoying being away from my Shoreditch shoebox of a bedroom – Willesden Green has been good to me so far!

However, the settling down bit is scary. Nothing, as ever, is set in stone. I’ve got ten months left of my fixed term contract at Sky so time will tell if I find anything more permanent. I do like experiencing different workplaces – the corporate operator Sky has about 17,500 employees compared to Channel 4’s Public Service Broadcasting 800 (again, approximate). It’s also a very different role to my previous ones.

I’ve not had the chance to podcast recently so I’m hoping to get back to the music in 2012, if there’s a demand for it. I need to get over the North West thing – in Shoreditch I’d go off to gigs and events most evenings but I’m more of a hermit in my new home, perhaps it’s the cold or maybe I’m risking getting too comfortable.

I had one of those epiphanies the other day, the kind that will seem irrelevant to everyone else, where I realised that podcasting and blogging are activites I can pursue independently. I don’t have to rely on anyone else to put my plans into action – but neither to I have to ask anyone. And that’s sometimes dispiriting.

The two things that I’ve loved doing in the past, presenting and music, have required me to find others to help me go further. I can write songs, but I’m scared to play guitar solo, plus I’m not a very advanced player. It’s great to be able to play with others as it makes the whole process more fun, but it’s also nerve wracking to reveal what you’ve written.

The last track I wrote was the first in several months. It’s short and it’s ‘demotastic’; long pauses, Garage band reverb and general poor quality. But it’s the idea that counts, I suppose!

I also would like to move from radio into onscreen presenting. I guess I could do this at home with vlogs but I’d love to film future music interviews and get out and about. Unfortunately this requires assistance so I guess I’ll need to pluck up the courage to start asking people to help out. I’ve always been quite embarrassed to admit how much I enjoy presenting for fear of it changing people’s opinions of me. I enjoy meeting new people, and I like the excuse to find out the hows and whys of music and more – interviewing is the tried and tested method of getting those answers.

Soon, I’ll be revealing my top musicians of the year, so if you’ve got a band you think I should listen to, leave me a comment below.

Skins: Courting controversy for the sake of it?

This is the first full trailer for teen focused drama, Skins.

The third series will focus on former lead character Tony’s sister Effie, and her friends. I’m looking forward to a casting change as I felt that the former characters lacked something (um…realism?)

Skins is one of those marmite programmes. I personally find it irritating, completely unrealistic, often poorly scripted, (the line “whoa nice swearing!” haunts my dreams…) and yet still utterly compelling.

The very first trailer for Skins a couple of years ago mixed semi naked revellers, sexual activity and lots of booze. The new trailer, as above, is oddly full of violence and more of the expected ‘aren’t we cool’ posing.

In the original series Effie, who at first appeared to be a dedicated privately educated school girl (but actually spent her evenings out partying) was involved in one of the more interesting plot twists concerning her adventure filled evenings out and her brother’s part in her double life.

This advert is probably nothing to do with the series, bearing in mind that the characters are just sixteen (!) It reminds me somewhat of the scene in Trainspotting when Begbie throws a glass over a balcony just because he feels like fighting. That however is not a scene that takes place with 6 posh teenagers in a Bristonian pub!

The second series took advantage of the fact that most of its cast had turned 18 and were legally allowed to flash more than before…one of the production team even wrote about having to film certain scenes late on in the schedule because they were waiting for a cast member to come of age. If they couldn’t shock with the partying, booze and drugs of the previous series they could fill it with sex and they did, usually with one sex scene per episode- Skins therefore telling teenagers not only how to party but how to ‘do it’ as well…

…what ‘how to’ will series three give us? How to draw blood without displacing elaborate hair?

Frank.

(HAPPY NEW YWAR!)

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