This Is Outrageous: A Radio Show

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host ben on the left and myself with the glasses on the right

My flatmate Ben Grogan is doing a Masters in Mass Communications, which means that he has been at university for a long time.  It also means that for the last few years he has been hosting a student radio show.  With us realising that we has similar interests, I jumped on a new show with him entitled This Is Outrageous (a peep show reference).  So, on Mondays 1 till 3pm we take over Newcastle Student radio to mostly talk absolute nonsense, with some music in between. The aim of the show is to try and be as different as possible, whilst also mimicking some of our favourite podcasts along the way.  For example this week we interviewed DJ G (George Oxley) who is a young Bassline deejay from Sheffield who is opening up his own club (links below). We also discussed the OJ Simpson case, picked and reviewed some films I had seen this week, and tried to play music people may have not heard yet.  It is a total working progress, but we are having fun with it, so if you need a companion in your life on Monday afternoons you know where to go (again links below).

Listen here: http://nsrlive.co.uk/ (only works on certain browsers, chrome to be sure!)

DJ G soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/djgoxley

His new Bassline club: https://www.facebook.com/011Four/?fref=ts

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He Will Not Divide . Us

Tell me Shia LaBeouf isn’t crazy.  Tell me we aren’t looking at the slow breakdown of a celebrity.  Over the last couple of years or so him and his performance artist team (LaBeouf, Ronkko & Turner) have certainly suggested that.  From the outside it has been a viewing of an existential crisis as well as watching a man reflect on his own weird individual life.  However his latest project is his most impersonal, and a chance to see that him and his partners are attempting to make a movement for good.

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The whole thing is really simple: outside the Museum of The Moving Image in New York they have set up a camera & mic that is being broadcast live on the internet, and they have invited anyone to say ‘He Will Not Divide Us’ in front of it.  It’s effectively an attempt to bring America together post the appointment of the highly polarising Donald Trump, though the actual website gives a list of convoluted reasons for the project.  In short, and after 3 days of the 24hr stream, it’s brilliant.  Every time I go to the website something profound is happening and I’ll definitely be spending a lot of time there over the next four years (or however long Trump lasts).

It has done that awful thing to me where I have a sudden faith in humanity and it has shifted by political views back towards the left.  This is because I have been glued to the people who have shown up to say the words, or protest against them.  Take the guy who took a 12 hour bus from Toronto for example and has been rapping an inch from the camera with Shia today.  Or Ally and Maximilian, who for a while formed a community around the camera, a group of friends.  The words are now rarely said in repetition, like they were initially by oddity Jaden Smith, and have become more organic.  It took less than a day for people to start mixing up the phrase, or singing it.  I love these people and every second I watch the stream, I want to be there more and more.

Last night and this morning it really peaked for me.  Around UK midnight time a man appeared with a ‘Make America Great Again’ cap on, yet there was no real tension.  He stood there with his thick moustache, Harley Davidson t-shirt and tracksuit bottom as he rallied the crowd.  At first he was questioning the whole thing, and was crudely whispering to the camera, but after a while he blended in with the scene.  It was like he had been converted, or better yet become an example of the project being successful.  Everyone around welcomed him in and thus his reactions to it all was fascinating.  His aggression was humorous and his warmth likeable, showing no divide between a Trump supporter and non-Trump supporter.  Then there this morning when I woke up, the master of fun was there alone.  A guy carrying a tent dressed fully in pink, professing his own internet art.  He passed on messages of challenging yourself and forcing failure so that you can improve, while of course sometimes throwing in the divide mantra.  And this actually inspired me.  For whatever reason a random guy hundreds of miles away made me think about my own life, which is a bizarre feeling.

Every so often Shia pops in, to pump up the group.  He bounces around saying hello’s and love yous to everyone and these are probably the best moments.  It’s when the energy is lifted and the repetition comes.  Though it also brings conflict, because understandably people are sceptical of the man.  A video that will no doubt go viral and become a staple of the livestream is a few seconds where he screams at a young guy who is against the project.  And obviously this defeats the purpose of the coming together and respecting different views idea, but it also shows the passion of it all.  I’m a passionate person and I have felt a great deal of it watching this stream.  The spirit and joy that these people are in  is really admirable.  I see only positives, and when something bad happens I’ll look silly, but I cannot get over how cool it is.

I have utterly fallen in love with the stream and it’s literally made me emotional.  It shows the power of kindness and from this has swayed me back towards the left side of politics. I’ve found that you have to look past some of stupidity that appears within people and realise that we are all the same.  We are all imperfect and shameful, but have the ability at times to show a bit of unity.  This stream mostly just makes me laugh, yet still I feel changed by it, and I think that is the ultimate goal of art.

Watch it here and you will understand exactly what I am saying: http://hewillnotdivide.us/

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Side-note:  This is a form of art explaining another form of art again, so i apologise.  I have been moved by all sorts of stuff recently, not just this daft pretentious performance. Mostly by the debut album of Spring King, which is called Tell Me If You Like To, and is absolutely brilliant. I’ve already started assigning people in my life to songs on it when I hear them, which is a sign of something I adore.  Listen if you like indie/punk or if you’re a fan of not being depressed.

I have writers block.

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Do I even like poetry?

No, you just think that you do.

I think that I like it.

Describe liking something.

I can’t.

No-one can.

Maybe I do like poetry then.

You don’t.

Stop telling me what to do.

Grow up.

Has this become a poem?

Grow up.

I’m grown.

You’re not acting it.

You don’t even exist.

I exist.

In my head?

In everyone’s head.

Like a parasite.

Like a warning.

A warning about what?

Problems.

Everyone has problems.

­ Exactly.

Side-note:  More like ‘writers laziness’.

Discovering a Dislike for a Newspaper

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And then realising you hate all of them would be an apt continuation of the title for this piece.  Though considering I haven’t read every word of every paper ever written, I’m probably not qualified to say that I dislike them all.  But I do dislike the Sunday Express. I’m not entirely sure what possessed me to buy the 25th of September 2016 edition, other than I needed a crime article for one of my lectures.  Thankfully, there was an article on the the front page that I could skim through, so I took it over to the counter.  Can’t even tell you how much it was.

Arriving home, I read the story I needed to, then decided to have a gander at the rest of the paper.  It wasn’t an enjoyable experience.  The inside page spread was a large piece on the recent labour leader election.  Now I’m a Jeremy Corbyn fan, so I’m slightly blinded, but they were talking about him like he was a prolific murderer.  They couldn’t believe he’d won a majority again and are preparing for another downfall.  Now this whole thing about how the media creates a false persona of Corbyn is described well by the fake news reporter guy whose videos make the rounds of Facebook.  Watch that if you come across it, rather than me discuss it, because I really don’t care enough.  All I have to say is that it amazes me this two page article got past the editor.

The rest of the paper consisted of some generic news stuff, that was fine to read, and some awful tabloid stuff.  It also included a full sport pullout, where every page was populated by football apart from one that was actually quite an interesting look at the upcoming Ryder Cup and it’s relation to Brexit.  That was the highlight.  The trouble I have is that I don’t who the demographic for this paper is?  It’s certainly not me and I’m baffled that it’s still in publish.  I’d be interested to meet the kind of people that read this stuff.

 

Sidenote: This is all exaggerated and I can’t work out the point of it.  It’s just I’ve had a distaste for the newspaper business and it’s been clogging my mind.