Sad Fanboy Admissions

There's one person who I'd really love to meet - namely Gigi Edgley. I was massively impressed by her performance in Farscape - she was captivating, with an amazing presence and motion in everything she did (it certainly doesn't hurt that it was very erotic). She's definitely someone I'd like to sit down with and chat over drinks for a evening. Of course, the chance of getting to do that are slim - unless I ever finish writing The Witnesses and get enough money to make it. (The female lead is written for her - whereas the male lead is written for my friend Joseph DeLorenzo).

She's currently touring the US. If she was to hit Seattle, I'd take her out for a drink and get her to meet the Surreal Software crew (a more talented group of scum and villainy you'll never meet).

Other actors I'd like to meet and/or work with some day?

Meg Ryan, Johnny Depp, Brad Pitt, Angelina Jolie, Ben Browder, Claudia Black, Anthony Simcoe, Wayne Pygram (ok, so yes, that's the whole Farscape cast... not too surprising to be honest), Hugh Laurie, John Hurt, Ian McKellen, Andy Serkis, Kevin Smith, Janeane Garofolo... I'll add to the list when I remember who was on it. It's a long list.

Some times I wish I was still a journalist... much easier to meet people that way :) But when I moved to the US, it got much more difficult to get into the biz - in the UK, it was easy (at the time, anyway, provided you had a bit of history)... it seems much harder to network into it over here.

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Manchester - 5 years later...

Well, Manchester has changed a hell of a lot since I used to live here. I'm sitting here in a Starbucks (one of several - they're as common here as they are in Seattle, it seems) checking my email online.

Downtown - which was bombed in 1996 by the IRA using a van full of semtex - is ... erm... different. Much different. Almost unrecognizable in fact.

It's all glass and towers now. There's a huge ferris wheel downtown in the area that used to be called the Corn Exchange. What the Corn Exchange was (a bunch of hippy low-rent shops and cool clothes stores, kind of like Pike Place market without the food) is now a glitzy ritzy store area called The Triangle. Across the street, what was the Daily Mirror print shop for Manchester is now a huge semi-enclosed nightclub, food and movie location called The PrintWorks - everything you could want in a night on the town, all in one spot.

The movie theatres in the PrintWorks are great too - large, American-style stadium seating affairs - with screens that seem larger than Cinerama in Seattle. And upstairs, in the balcony, there are armchairs with phones to get waiter service while you watch the movie. We need something like this in Seattle.

The Trains have also changed - as has the train station - and are now plush Star Trek-like affairs complete with sci-fi doors.

All change.

I need to take some photos before I come back. I'll put them up on Flickr.com in my photo section - and I'll need to scan in some that I took the day after the Manchester bombing for comparison.

It's weird. Five years is a long time - but you don't notice it while it's happening.

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Hyperlinks in Paper Media

Well well well... things have changed quite a bit since I was last in England. Here's a surprising one though.

The Granuiad1 (sic) is now putting hyperlinks in its articles. No, I don't mean that they're spelling them out with an http://whatever and everything... no, they're actually putting the whole text-in-blue-with-an-underline thingy in print media.

It's actually surprisingly effective. Instead of clicking on said link (which frankly, will only start doing something once someone actually manages to put together working E-Paper for the masses), you just look across the page until you see the call-out box which has all of the "anchors" for the links. It's a very very cute way of handling glossaries in printed articles. I wholeheartedly approve.

1That would be The Guardian newspaper, which for a while now has been warmly referred to as the Granuiad, because for the longest time it had the worst proof reading in the business.

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The Lazarus Papers...

Looks like my friend Miah Hundley has finally got his project off the ground. He's currently in Bangkok, getting ready to shoot his film on 35mm.

Way to go! Holy crap I'm so excited for him. He has been working on the script for years, and it's finally coming to fruition.

Living the dream man, living the dream!

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Thanksgiving Dinner

I'm British, but since I got to the US I've always done the Thanksgiving thing. (It's probably one of the reasons why my waistline has... ahem... expanded considerably since I got here). At first, friends would invite me (and other unfortunate transplants or people without families) to their place on Thanksgiving - which is a wonderful tradition. These days, I invite friends over. However, this year, due to an accident of miscommunication it's just me and my wife at home. (Although I am making a trifle for a bunch of friends from work - see a couple of articles ago for the recipe).

So what am I making this year? I've never really done the whole ultra-traditional thing when it comes to Thanksgiving dinner. I'll make a few nods to it here and there, but it's not mandatory in my book. And frankly, defrosting and cooking a turkey is a huge pain in the ass. So I tend to go for something a little different.

So here's the spread:

Fresh Herb Salad
Strawberry/Mandarin Orange Trifle
Fenberry Pie
Green Bean Casserole (ok, very traditional)
Cornish Game Hen with roasted potatoes, gravy, broccoli, carrots
Roast Acorn Squash

... and the plus side is that this'll keep us going for about three weeks with the leftovers ;-)

Fenberry Pie is an interesting one. It's a medieval (14th Century) meat & fruit pie, which is pretty unique and tastes like nothing on earth. It's also really yummy - a combination of pork and chicken in an egg custard, with prunes and cranberries. Er... don't look at me like that. Seriously, until you try it, you won't know what you're missing.

If you really want to give it a go yourself, you can get the recipe book it's in (Ye Bors Hede Boke of Cookry) from Camlann Medieval Village for $20. Well worth it, even if the spices used can be a little hard to find. For those, you'll need to go to the same store that Alton Brown gets his spices from - World Merchants (aka World Spice), who stock a wide variety of well known and not-so-well-known spices. They also do mail-order. (Luckily, they're just down the street from me in Pike Place Market in Seattle, so I just pop in whenever I'm running low).

I'm doing more cooking tomorrow... I've got pumpkins to roast today and puree, and then figure out what to do with them. There will be at least one pumpkin pie, but the rest is going to be random (I've had great Pumpkin Soup at a japanese restaurant in Seattle called Bonzai Bistro that I think I'm going to try to replicate). There will be a ham. Possibly even some Lasagna. And yes, yet another Fenberry Pie (because one is not enough).

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