September 2nd, 2003


Orwell, Wells, Mobile Phones and Where I'll be on the 13th.


the newswrite issue arrived advertising magic casements and it reveals that i will be on the panel 'breaking into the business' at around three in the afternoon on the 13th of September. so, i'll be there, most likely some time around one thirty, after i've been to work. i'm not really sure what this is going to be like, as i've never been to the nsw writing centre before, and since it's one of the last things going on, it could be that it'll be empty by the time i've arrived and i can sit and play poker with the people on my panel. which means that if you want to win money off me, you should come along too. if worse comes to worse, you'll find people, and listen to intelligent women tell you interesting things about the industry and their work, while i sit there and look pretty.


i read an essay by george orwell, discussing h.g. wells last night. i've never been a big fan of wells; there's always been this lack of passion in his work, this coldness to his characters that i have never been able to force my way through. orwell, however, says something very interesting about wells, in response to a book of essays (i believe) that wells has written where he claims that hitler is a cartoon villain, and germany will never move out of their country. orwell writes:

"Wells, like Dickens, belongs to the non-military middle class. The thunder of guns, the jingle of spurs, the catch in the throat when the old flag goes by, leave him manifestly cold..."

this, orwell suggests, is the root of wells misunderstanding of world politics, and this is got me thinking about the speculative fiction genre, and how in some ways it hasn't moved a long way from the "supposed antithesis between the man of science who is working towards a planned World State and the reactionary who is trying to restore a disorderly past" that orwell claims to mark the majority of wells' work.

it's an interesting thought, but not one i've explored any more than that original idea. but i figured the blog could do with something new on it, so i've added it here.


my mobile can now, apparently, send text messages to people in other countries, thus making the world a little smaller. i've yet to try this function, because, naturally, i haven't been asking for the mobile phone numbers of people i know in other countries, but i'm going to get a few cause i just love the idea.

what i really wish, is that i had the cash so that i could go out and buy all the neat little technological advancements that are appearing, such as phones with cameras in them, and more. but no cash, no go.
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Magician Daredevil

" American illusionist David Blaine has shocked a group of journalists by appearing to cut off part of his ear at a news conference to promote a forthcoming stunt.

The daredevil U.S. magician apparently drew blood after he was asked whether he could show the assembled reporters any new tricks. He borrowed a pocket knife and screamed as he applied it to his left ear.

He left the room holding a bloodied handkerchief to his ear before reappearing and walking past journalists with his ear and the top of his shirt covered with what appeared to be blood.

The event was aimed at publicising Blaine's next major feat on September 5, when he will be suspended in a clear plexi-glass case by the River Thames for 44 days.

The 30-year-old New Yorker will be sealed in a space about seven feet (2.1 metres) high, seven feet long and three feet wide, hung from a crane near Tower Bridge.

Blaine will eat no food and will have one tube for water and another for urinating.

It will be his first major stunt outside the United States.

Previously he has been entombed in a block of ice for 61 hours, buried in a coffin for a week and spent 35 hours standing on top of an 80-foot pillar in Manhattan.

"I consider this to be the most difficult thing I'm ever going to do in my lifetime," he said.

Blaine will be allowed to take diapers, a journal, some pens, lip balm, a pillow and a pad to lie on into the box. He said he currently weighs about 205 pounds and expects to lose about 45 pounds during the stunt.

Last week Blaine marked his arrival in London by perching on the roof of a capsule of the London Eye -- the world's tallest Ferris wheel.

(i'm not exactly sure what is so 'magical' about these stunts, but maybe that's just me.)
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