Tuesday, May 29, 2007

[The Life of Shaun #122] Springtime in London

29 May, this morning - temperature with the wind chill: 0˚C (32˚F).  High?  12˚C (57˚F).  And it was so hot earlier this week I was in a tee!  Crazy little island...

Cheers,
Shaun

--
Shaun Coley
Clerkenwell, Islington
London, UK
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Sunday, May 27, 2007

[The Life of Shaun #121] Madge redux

Here's an article about Madge from yesterday's Evening Standard (Natasha buys it, not me!):


Madge chaos in Exmouth Market [my shopping street!]

CHAOS IN Exmouth Market last night as filming continues on Madonna's pet film project, Filth and Wisdom.   She's directing it - not acting in it.

"There were all the crew, people taking photographs and autograph hunters," says my passer-by.

"And there was also a pretty angry bunch of locals because the filming stopped them from getting into Renton's Chemists [my chemist!] to get their prescriptions."

By change another famous blond, Turner Prize-winning artist Grayson Perry, happened upon the circus, as he came to have dinner in the Exmouth Market branch of Strada with his wife and daughter.

"No-one was paying any attention to him," I'm told.  "He looked a bit miffed."

Guy Ritchie must know how he feels.


Sidenote, I love their commendable use of hyphenated multi-part adjectives!

I had a chat with Saffron this morning and was introduced to her & Fiona's new puppy, Max.  Adorable!  Ah, the glamorous life of a dirt-poor student in EC1...  ;-)

Cheers,
Shaun

--
Shaun Coley
Clerkenwell, Islington
London, UK
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[The Life of Shaun #120] "Shaun's List"

Hey all,

Just wanted to let you know about my other list "Shaun's List" - its description:

Description This is "Shaun's List" - basically it's a list for my forwards... politics, useless knowledge, jokes, etc., all that fun stuff. But it also allows you to unsubscribe if you get tired of hearing from me. ;)

Not everyone likes that kind of stuff, so I keep a separate list.  If anyone's not on it and would like to be, let me know.

Natasha and I went to this very cool restaurant last night called the Hoxton Apprentice; its goal is to 'help people who have found life hard', so the staff there is made up of (previously) homeless and long-term unemployed.  Some are trained in the kitchen, some for the front.  It was really great - fantastic atmosphere, and really good food, and reasonably priced.  I can definitely recommend it to those in London and those who are London-bound - it's a great date place, too, and it's definitely now on my list.

Cheers,
Shaun

--
Shaun Coley
Clerkenwell, Islington
London, UK
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Friday, May 25, 2007

[The Life of Shaun #119] Clerkenwell

Yesterday after I got home from school I had to go to Budgens on the top of Exmouth Market (I live on the bottom) to buy lightbulbs to replace the one that burned out in the bathroom.  We see filming going on semi-regularly around the area, and this evening they were right on the market, and I was annoyed at having to stop to wait for the take to be done and noticed they were blocking my chemist.

I just found out today what movie it was...

"Filth and Wisdom."

Madonna's directorial debut!

My neighbourhood is so cool.

I can't believe I didn't notice it was her directing...

Cheers,
Shaun

--
Shaun Coley
Clerkenwell, Islington
London, UK
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Wednesday, May 23, 2007

[The Life of Shaun #118] Shaun Coley, MB

Exam results came out today and I passed all six exams from blocks three and four - woo woo!

I really can't believe the course is coming to an end; it's been so intense and such a part of my life for so long it felt like it was "just the way things were" and would go on like that forever.  But this is the last week of this elective block, I have one class next week (Tuesday - Friday), then a week off, then China (for which we have to write a short paper) and then classes are done!  I still have to decide on a research project, but assuming that will be desk research that means I need to get on that job pronto.  Eeks!

Anyway, some good news today!  Now back to derivatives...

Cheers,
Shaun

--
Shaun Coley
Clerkenwell, Islington
London, UK
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Monday, May 21, 2007

[The Life of Shaun #117] Paris '07

Well, it'd been a while, so some friends and I decided to pop onto the Eurostar, under the English Channel and into the Gallic capital for a weekend of quaint streets, gorgeous food and disapproving scowls*.  My friends Sean and Aaron went on Thursday, Ben and Roger on Friday, then I joined the lot on Saturday morning.

The first part of the day was devoted to culture at Musée d'Orsay, which I never got to when I lived there or when I visited in 2005.  (Side note: I was extremely cultural this past week!  Tate Modern last Monday, National Portrait Gallery on Friday, Musée d'Orsay Saturday, and another to come... more than I've done in my entire life previously, I think!)  It's in such an awesome space, a disused train terminal; it was going to be knocked down à la Penn Station in New York, but fortunately someone there had a sense of sanity and it was saved and converted into a glorious museum.  Lots of good stuff there.  That night was dinner and, as it was the "Night of Museums" and all the museums were open late, we went to the Pompidou at 23:30.

When I lived in Paris it would be a lie to say it was a positive experience at the time; I mean, it was, but being 18 and not speaking French, it was an overwhelming first place from home to live.  Then when I visited in 2005, I'd lived in New York for seven years and then London, so if anything Paris was a bit underwhelming.  However, going up the escalators to the top floor of the Pompidou this time, looking out at Paris at night, from the Sacré-Cœur, to the Opera, the Arc de Triomphe, the Grand Palais, then the Tour Eiffel and realising that just beyond that is where I lived, I understood how amazing that was.  I think being in Paris with particularly good company helped, too.

Sunday was a much more relaxing day!  Aaron and I met up with Sean & Roger at a Hammam while Ben went about the city taking photos.  After that we parted ways, Sean, Ben and Roger back to London, Aaron and I checking out the new T3 tram and then retiring to a cafe for some rest.  Taking time in Paris to see public transport may seem odd, but I like that kind of thing; and the description was great - this is Paris, after all, so installing a new tram involved designers, colourists, artists and psychologists.  The trains are the new ones where you can walk from the front to back of the train, and the colours change from front to back so that you can sit in a compartment that suits your mood that day.  Only in Paris!  But good thing to have that colour as the tram runs through charmless grey neighbourhoods and the bottom of the 13éme, 14éme and 15éme - those people need a dash of dazzle in their lives!

Sunday night a lovely dinner in le Marais before heading to bed and coming back to London and reality (ugh!) this morning.  If you'd like, here are some pics from the weekend:

http://uk.pg.photos.yahoo.com/ph/shaunec1/album?.dir=/c817re2&.src=ph&.tok=phlGHyGBw68nxzg6

A really lovely weekend, and whole week, actually, and I was sad to see it end.  But all things must and it's time to look forward and onto the next thing: China (yikes!!!) in three weeks, followed closely by Athens & Mykonos for my sister Lisa's wedding.  Oh, and I need to find a job.  Anyone hiring?

A plus tard,
Shaun


*Actually, that's playing on the stereotypes and the Parisiens are much friendlier than you might suppose; of course this time I was with two people who spoke French pretty well, which didn't hurt...

--
Shaun Coley
Clerkenwell, Islington
London, UK
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Saturday, May 19, 2007

[The Life of Shaun #116] À bientôt!

Hi all!

Just a short note - I am off tomorrow morning to Paris for a short weekend away - looking forward to the mini break!  Staying in a B&B in the Marais, perhaps a museum, perhaps a nice bottle of wine...

Had a very cool day today - just went into Soho to pick up a couple things and went to the National Portrait Gallery on a whim - there's some great stuff there!  Then did a lovely walk across the Jubilee Bridges and along the South Bank to enjoy the gorgeous weather.  A lovely day to be a Londoner.

Have a great weekend!  If you have some time, check out this episode of This American Life, "81 Words":

http://audio.thisamericanlife.org/podcast/204.mp3

It's the story about how homosexuality was removed as a pathology in the DSM.  It's really very good.

À plus tard,
Shaun

--
Shaun Coley
Clerkenwell, Islington
London, UK
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Monday, May 07, 2007

[The Life of Shaun #115] Detox

I am approaching the last hours of my week-long detox; I have been doing the "master cleanse" since last Monday night.  That means I haven't had solid food or (worse) alcohol in a week.  I decided after 32 years of putting toxins into my body, it deserved a week off to help get them out.  I was originally going to do it until Thursday, but then I learned that it takes a few days to work back up to real eating again, and I have a friend coming in town Friday so I must be ready for action then.

It's been an interesting week!  It wasn't as hard as I thought it would be - after three days is sort of becomes normal, and even the first three weren't so bad because it's the start and I was enthusiastic about seeing what happened.  But it was definitely an interesting experience, a test of putting your mind to something and I am glad I did it.  But now that it's at the end, I am really looking forward to (brothy) soup tomorrow!

I think I may try to do this once a year, just to help my abused body stay on the up-and-up.

BTW, kudos to my Mom and Dad who did it with me for five and seven days, respectively!

Hope you've all enjoyed your food this week!

Cheers,
Shaun

--
Shaun Coley
Clerkenwell, Islington
London, UK
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Friday, May 04, 2007

[The Life of Shaun #114] Clapham & Shoredich adventures


Hey all,

Got some pics from the weekend, so thought I'd share.

1. Cheers! at the Two Brewers, Clapham
2. Me and some friends at the Two Brewers
3. Jonathan and me at a friend's b/f's bday party (phew!) in Shoreditch
4. A little later in the night...
5. Whoops, a second later!!!

Cheers,
Shaun

--
Shaun Coley
Clerkenwell, Islington
London, UK
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Thursday, May 03, 2007

[The Life of Shaun #113] Power Couple

I live below one of London's power couples!  And a lesbian one at that.  The penthouse mentioned below is two floors above our flat.  We've shared the lift and sometimes get Fiona's mail.


[April 28, 2007]

The Power Couples (Section 7)

(Evening Standard Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) THE LITERARY LIONS

[...]

THE SISTERHOOD

SAFFRON BURROWS, ACTRESS, 34, & FIONA SHAW, ACTRESS, 48 How they met Fiction became fact for the sapphic duo who met while performing Jeanette Winterson's sexually charged story of lesbian love, The PowerBook.

Influence: They are used to being with powerful partners - Burrows was with Mike Figgis and Shaw with Deborah Warner when they met. Fiona is one of the most acclaimed stage actresses of her generation, with roles such as Medea and Hedda Gabler (and, lucratively, Aunt Petunia in Harry Potter). Saffron, also an actress (Deep Blue Sea and Troy), uses her influence to campaign for human rights as vice president of the National Civil Rights movement.

Family: They share Burrows' penthouse in Clerkenwell.

What they say: 'Loving is what is crucial to me. Loving is the reason to live,' says Saffron.

[...]

Cheers,
Shaun

--
Shaun Coley
Clerkenwell, Islington
London, UK
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