Sunday, 15 August 2010

The Chocolate Ocelot's Fringe - Sunday

Eyelashes on pillow:1
Eyelashes under pillow: 1
Eyelashes on eyelids: very few

Some 180 pages into Dan Brown, and am going to make a prediction: the constant references to a pyramid in Washington DC somehow refer to the top of the Washington monument (harking back to a similar plot point in The Invisibles). He does bang on about it too much, and these books do tend to become something of a tourist guide, I’ve noticed. We shall see.

A quick note about our apartment kitchen – it looks out onto Castle Wynd North – a long steep flight of steps that leads up from the road-cum-coach park below the castle to the main gates. This means that the kitchen window is extremely visible to anyone of the hundreds of tourists who trek up and down it everyday. This naturally impinges on my freedom to move about the flat in less than full apparel, to wit: clothing is required when I am about my porridgey tasks. Another thing about the steps – they are ascended and descended almost exclusively by Japanese tourists, since their innumerable tour coaches park down the bottom. The Japanese are early risers by all indications, and stereotypically enough, seem to be disproportionately equipped with photographic equipment. I pray that they have not used their cameras to catch an early morning snap of a naked Ocelot going about her breakfastial duties. The resulting hits on Flickr could bring the internet to its knees.

Don’t manage to get out of flat until just before lunchtime. Takes ages to
a) get up
b) get dressed
c) catch up on blog from yesterday
d) get face on and look presentable

Then it’s a brisk march round to the Ghillie Dhu again, this time for Me Me Me – a three person show featuring Mr B the Gentleman Rhymer, who we really liked when we saw him at a steampunk do at the Scala a few months ago. Turns out that the other two performers mesh with him very well – sparkly-eyed Desmond O’Connor with his fruity songs and sex and drugs, and lovely willowy Sarah-Louise Young and her songs about repressed anger and one night stands. Wish them much luck and bigger attendance figures – there are only about twelve of us there, and two of them are doing that obvious reviewer thing and scribbling down notes in a little pad throughout the show. Honestly, how can you possibly pay attention and write a review at the same time? You could never take it all in properly if you’re critiquing as you go. I found myself starting to review shows in my head as we were watching them yesterday, and it got quite in the way of my enjoyment. Anyway, we order food at the bar before hand and sit at a nice little round table and munch as we watch. Very civilised. Well done the Me Me Meers.

Damn it, why do I keep hitting the caps lock button so often? Stupid fingers. You would not believe how badly I’m typing right now. Since I still can’t touch type and therefore have to look at the keyboard rather than screen, I have no idea what’s actually coming out. Combined with my erratically-lengthed fingernails, courtesy of three washing-machine-moving breakages, my nail/key depth perception is well buggered.

Next show is Moon Dog – a freebie over at one of them bars on Blair Street off the royal mile. Kate Roxburgh is a teeny tiny woman with short blond hair, looks like a Heather Mills MiniMe (but presumably with two real legs). Charmingly scatty, she does a bit of banjo, takes some very odd flights of fancy and makes innumerable astrophysical references. She’s quite good, considering it was only her second show of the Fringe, like most people we’re seeing today.

Then over to the Pleasance to see Colin Hoult’s Enemy Of The World. Tch, have just knocked caps lock on again. Tits. Anyway… queuing up outside, a well-spoken older man (presumably the young girl with him was his daughter. Christ, I hope so), is taken by the multi-coloured marvel that is Herself’s timetable, and asks us about Colin Hoult, ‘Have you seen him before? Is he any good?’ etc. No, he’s crap, that’s why we’re coming to see him for the third year in a row. Honestly. Back in the real world, a short but pleasant conversation ensues, and it turns out that he also has a show on, like half the people in any given audience at the Fringe, it seems. We take a flyer of his for later scrapbooking, and realise that he is Bill Dare, producer of The Now Show and The Secret World. Hurrah. Fail to scab tickets for The Now Show off him. Boo.

Colin Hoult’s Enemy Of The World show is as funny and dark as he was in last year’s Carnival Of Monsters (caps lock again – arse pants). Remember just in time that unwelcome audience participation is a feature of his shows, and manage to sit in the relative safety of the second row. Even so, it is a damn close run thing. Like last year, he has a stooge planted in the audience, who I manage to clock this time round. Halfway through the show, I realise that both this and last year’s shows are named after old Dr Who stories. Resolve to stalk bump into him at some point this week and suggest The Deadly Assassin for next year. Either that or The Terror of The Zygons. Wonder if Robert Langdon feels like this when he has a stunning revelation?

Kill time at Forbidden Planet. Instantly spot that the cast of How To Survive A Zombie Apocalypse are in there, signing books. Actually I spot the old guy who plays ‘Donald’ first – he must be 70 at least, and then ‘Dr Dale’ in his aviator shades. Say hello to them and get a book signed, even though I didn’t really want one, but you have to if you stop to talk to them, don’t you?

Next down south to the Laughing Horse pub for a freebie showing of a documentary about Malcolm Hardee and the Tunnel Club (caps lock on again- fuckity fuck). Simon Munnery pops in to introduce it, which is nice. The full Malcolm documentary is still a work in progress, but looks good.

Then nip round corner to a converted church to meet up with Dr Foot and HFM for the How To Survive A Zombie Apocalypse show. Is quite close and hot inside. A bit like last year, show is too light on zombies and too heavy on panto shtick, like a Bernie Clifton/ Peter Glaze sketch from Crackerjack. Still, most entertaining nonetheless. And I still say that the pirate is a better survival ally than the vampire, no matter what they claim.

Chat to Zombie cast afterwards about pirates and triceratopses, then off to Pleasance Grand for Stephen K Amos, our first gentleman of colour this Fringe. The Grand is a massive auditorium, so it’s like a proper big stand-up gig (just like Michael MacIntyre, probably). Show is good, though of everything we’ve seen so far, this is oddly the most obviously a preview, with fuckups, unrehearsed bits and sections which he is still deciding whether to keep in or not. He also starts doing stuff about being gay, which comes across a bit clumsily, like he’s never done it before. Never seen Mr Amos properly apart from on panel shows, where most of his material is about being black, so couldn’t say for sure but this feels a bit like he’s just come out, or at least just started to incorporate being gay into his show.

All done and back to bed.

Robert Langdon has barely moved in over 200 pages, though now he is at least walking downstairs from the room where he’s been standing for several chapters. The freak killer is also moving slowly though another building. The padding in this book is a marvel to behold. Get on with the weird codes, Brown!

Shows seen: 6
Flyers collected: 10. Herself’s special dance still keeping them at bay.
Steps walked: Unknown – Herself’s walker device has begun to play up, much to her annoyance.

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