Monday, 21 November 2011

Tuesday, 8 November 2011

لا إله إلا الله محمد رسول الله

'Abd Allah Ibn 'Amr said "I heard the Prophet (sallallahu alayhe wa sallam) say, Dhu' Suwayqatayn from Abyssinia will destroy the Ka'bah and steal it's treasure and Kiswah. It is as if I could see him now: he is bald headed and has a distortion in his wrists. He will strike the Ka'bah with his spade and pick-axe" - Ahmad

Ibn 'Abbas narrated that the Prophet said "It is as if I can see him now: he is black and his legs are widely spaced. He will destroy the Ka'bah stone by stone." - Ahmad

Abu Hurairah said that he heard the Messenger of Allah , peace be upon him, say to Thaubaan, "How will you be when the nations will call each other upon you as those who are dining call each other to their dish?" Thaubaan asked, "...O Messenger of Allah, will that be because we will be few?" He said, "No, rather at that time you will be many, but you will be like the froth scum on the surface of a body of water and Allah the Exalted will remiove from the hearts of your enemies their fear of you and al-wahn will be cast into your hearts." "And what is al-wahn, O Messenger of Allah?" The Prophet, peace be upon him, said, "Your love for the world and your hate for fighting."

Theatre of Blood: Inevitable Truth

It was observed in conversation around 1982-83 that at least half of the cast of the 1973 horror thriller "Theatre of Blood" were dead. On closer examination it proved there was actually a quarter of the cast dead, two of which had died in the year of filming. Given that it was an elderly cast of mainly British acting stalwarts it is no surprise that 38 years after it's initial release three quarters are now dead.

Actor --Year of Death -- Age --Age in Movie

Jack Hawkins -- 1973 -- 62 -- 62

Dennis Price -- 1973 -- 58 -- 58

Arthur Lowe -- 1982 -- 66 -- 57

Robert Coote -- 1982 -- 73 -- 64

Diana Dors -- 1984 -- 52 -- 41

Ian Hendry -- 1984 -- 53 -- 42

Harry Andrews -- 1989 -- 77 -- 61

Coral Browne -- 1991 -- 77 -- 60

Robert Morley -- 1992 -- 84 -- 65

Vincent Price -- 1993 -- 82 -- 62

Michael Hordern -- 1995 -- 83 -- 62

Joan Hickson -- 1998 -- 92 -- 67

Eric Sykes -- 2012 -- 89 -- 50

Milo O Shea -- 2013 -- 86 -- 47

Diana Rigg -- Alive -- 75 -- 35

Madeline Smith -- Alive -- 63 -- 24

Sunday, 6 November 2011

Uh-huh Kobain Iconocaustic: Media and Manipulation

All icons are formed by a process of identification, idolisation and marketing. In opening a new vein on the world of popular music, and here the word popular must be understood in the sense that a niche is found to have a groove in the mainstream, Kurt Cobain and band Nirvana achieved momentary post-modern heaven by promoting the subversive-nihilistic trade in "grunge" theatre. Heavy sounds are accompanied by gloomy, moody lyrics and wry humour, evidently intended to appeal to a minority but ultimately appealing to the zeitgeist of the western hemisphere. With Cobain's well-informed death 'flavour-of-the-month' becomes the stuff legends are made of - particularly rock and roll ones.

Of an interest, and weirdly enchanting, is the sweater Cobain fashioned for the video shoot of Nirvana's seminal "Smells like Teen Spirit" single. To the fan the sight of Cobain earthy strut and leer in a video that appears to break down into musical chaos the singular outstanding feature is the green striped sweater which holds the image of iconic Cobain in a place between rock absurdity and roll banality. The director Samuel Bayer claims Nirvana expected a sub-standard promo but he turned out a highly polished sense of the nature of modern rock. Veering between concert and high-school camp the dark shades help to evoke the passion of the practically inaudible lyrics. But it is the sweater we are concerned with. Now if the band wanted to escape the clutches of corporate domination then making a video like the one viewed was a tactical blunder the weight of Olympus.

The world is fickle and the eye is attached to that which it sees and desires. Cool Cobain, renting out angst in buckets, is formed entirely from guitar and green striped t-shirt, and all worshippers seek to find where they can imitate their 'idol' and search high and low for comfort in identification. The "business" is eager to help, and entombed the sweater in various locations to please the morbid glee of the pilgrimage of those underlings of the lower floors. The media pretends innocence in these matters and so we follow the idea with growing cynicism. Cobain's death could have only been bettered if he had only worn that sweater. Still it is a cool sweater.

Wednesday, 2 November 2011