Wednesday, 25 January 2017

Syndromes We Don't Have a Name For 3


The best things in life are free: You dedicate your life to getting things for free.
Will I receive 100% of the compensation? Also becomes a way of life.

Bullying is bad, but that wasn't bullying: There is always a reason why that wasn’t bullying, and there’s always a reason to bulldoze a beautiful historic building.

Running out of people who will listen to you.

Fancying that we were young geniuses born to regenerate the world...
our entrance into the social arena soon robbed us of our sublime conceit. (The Sorrows of Satan, Marie Corelli)

Commercial reality dawned.

The old crowds were thinning.

Trying too hard to be liked – plays, films etc can do it too.

Let's paint all Brutalist architecture... chrome yellow.
The fewer immigrants there are in your area, the more you hate and fear them.
Metooism: Racists who moan about being called racists because it’s an insult.
Extreme right winger borrows language of rights and claims he is being exploited.
Extreme right winger learns about Islam in order to attack it better, ends up converting.

Tendency of hairstyles to expand until they’re bigger than your head.

Manipulation by guilt.
Adopt a child because you want one to abuse.

That lurking urge to pick up your dry cleaning - except you've already picked it up. (@volatilitysmile)

X is abolished, then we realize we needed it, so it’s reinvented as Y, but X is never mentioned again.

Physicians have bestowed the character of Nervous on all those disorders whose nature and causes they were ignorant of. (1765 Robert Whytt court physician)

Monomania: Perfectly sane on every subject except… (Also, skeptical about everything apart from the idea that when we die our consciousness is reborn in another universe.)

I’m not over-critical, you are just flawed in every way and I'm pointing it out for your own good.

When I did it, it was cool, but when you did it, it was lame.
She rushes headlong into relationships and then dumps people without warning. (Dear Prudence at slate.com)

Set up five anti-leafblower sites so that you can prove it’s a “movement”.

Heritagisation: Buildings 20, 30, 40 years old may get bulldozed as old-fashioned, but make it to 50 and suddenly you’re “heritage”.

Yes, yes, I know! The hardest people to train are the ones who bluff that they already know what you’re trying to tell them, because they think you expect them to.

Yes, yes, I know! They think knowing is enough and that they don’t have to do the thing. Or they think it's OK to do the thing on special occasions only.

I can’t do what you ask now when you ask me in front of other people but I’ll do it later when I won’t lose face.

Elderly person starts spending kids’ inheritance on fake lotteries, collectable thimbles etc. Refuses to listen to reason.

The more industrial we become, the more we crave quality handmade goods. (Evan Harris on Dragon’s Den)

Tatemae and Honne (Japanese): What you pretend to believe and what you actually believe, respectively.

Temporary becomes permanent: The Eiffel Tower, prefabs (I wish).

Walt (for Walter Mitty): Someone who claims to be in the army (or police, or SAS, or mafia, or MI5 – or on the run from the mob).

Wrong end of telescope: Tall woman needs dress for formal occasion. Tiny friends offer to lend child-size clothes.

Making things too difficult: Insist that running shoes/parts of military uniform are white, so schoolchildren/soldiers have to spend ages cleaning them and painting them with Meltonian Shoe Cream.

X seems to have a tendency toward dishonesty even in situations where there is no rational reason for it. (NYT "I had to lie – they'd never have believed the truth!")

The Amalasuntha moment: When critical mass of the elite abandon its posts/retire rather than face consequences of the actions they implemented. (Byzantine Ambassador ‏@byzantinepower)

Do as we do, not as we say: Oh yes, we say you should do X, but we don’t really expect anybody to comply, everybody knows that!

Presque vu, etc: The smell of the cologne reminds me of holidays I haven’t been on. (Times)

Allophilia: More loyal than the king. More English than the English.

A long time a-dying/premature reading of the last rites/dead but it won’t lie down/zombie controversy.

More here, and links to the rest.


Friday, 20 January 2017

Euphemisms about Politics and Buildings

Islington, perfect place for a dinner party

Honestly, saying ‘just ask respectful questions’ is the biggest, most obvious tell for white male privilege that I can think of right now. (Charlotte L. Riley ‏@lottelydia)

"Corrupt" is usually shorthand for "political opponent". (@AlexPaknadel)

"Virtue signalling" is an odd term, used almost uniformly by people who presume their own lack of principles in others. (Fraser Campbell ‏@FraserC69)

Final note for the morning BritishValues = crypto-fascism. The end. Happy 2017 folks. (@TheBowhaus)

Thanks to 2016 we now know that "political correctness" was a politically correct term for anti-racism, anti-sexism and anti-fascism. (Liam Hogan ‏@Limerick1914)

Post-truth = lying
Fake news = propaganda
Alt-right = white supremacy
(Dan Brown ‏@brownorama)

Smartest, most sober piece I've read yet on Steve Bannon. (@JayFielden)
Where sober means soft-soap flattery of fascism. (James Mackenzie ‏@mrjamesmack)

UKIP head Paul Nuttall: The Labour Party led by Jeremy Corbyn seems to be interested in issues that swirl around the Islington dinner party. (Left-wing, not racist enough.)

 Empire, the classy name for worldwide police state. (AnarchistB!tchBot ‏@Antiwar2)

I hate the way "hard-working people" is used to mean "who agree with me". (@JonnElledge)

'Wonderful' 'very sensible' 'I really like her' 'very intelligent' and 'the best' mean 'I don't support her but I like her gender'. (Jon Dryden Taylor ‏@jondrytay)

Castro was a hugely divisive figure. (Emily Thornberry)

I'm coming to hear the phrase 'mainstream media' as code for 'I am a right wing extremist'. (Ellie Kaplan)

Some people have this weird idea that saying your opinion is freedom of speech, but criticising that opinion is some kind of censorship. (@existentialcoms)

'Listening' probably most irritating word in British politics. Used in same way on right and left: it means shut up. It means don't challenge. It means your opponent refuses to hear you. It is a silencing tactic. Nothing more. (Ian Dunt ‏@IanDunt And when politicians say they are going to "listen" to the people's concerns, they don't mean they're going to do anything to help.)

Poland’s controversial Radio Mariya (fascist)

Loving the Supreme Court Article 50 discussions. They're on "the danger of metaphors" now. Loaded words and how to avoid them. (@hughpearman)

"I voted for change" is the new "I'm not racist, but..." (Dave Woollaston)

In my experience, when a Trump supporter calls you "disrespectful" they mean "Related provable facts without any equivocation." (Allan Mott ‏@HouseofGlib)

Please stop telling people to respect others' opinions. That's for things like "I don't like coffee" not for "I don't like black people."

What does Donald Trump mean by “infrastructure”? Fracking? Dams? Motorways?

Trump: The election is rigged! (Translation: The media say mean things about me.)

Trump wants to “reshape wildlife policies”, ie make it easier for people to kill wildlife.

Remember: people that say 'tell it like it is!' always mean 'say what I think!' and squeak like babies about dissent. (Jon Dryden Taylor ‏@jondrytay)

BUILDINGS
A plan to “rip out much of the Covent Garden neighbourhood ... and replace it with four-lane highways, subterranean walkways and enormous office blocks [was foiled by Raine Spencer]. The GLC put it a different way, describing the scheme as ‘dealing satisfactorily with conditions of bad lay-out and obsolete development’.” No major development plans created in the sixties were ever complete without an international conference centre... The main feature of the second tranche of development was an ‘exciting’ new upper-level pedestrian street that would link Trafalgar Square and Leicester Square with the conference centre. (Beautiful Idiots and Brilliant Lunatics: A Sideways Look at Twentieth-Century London Rob Baker)

After listing was denied, Durham Uni is setting up a contest to replace (i.e. demolish) Dunelm House. (@SOSBrutalism)

Durham Uni talking about 'a holistic and world class design'. Usual weasel words presaging some milchwasser replacement [for Dunelm House]. (Catherine Slessor ‏@cath_slessor)

The ‘cheap’ and ‘uninviting’
textured glazing of the Commonwealth Institute’s opaque facade and its ‘prosaic’ wings were continually belittled in planning submissions. (iconeye.com They wanted to make people feel OK with destroying all of it except the roof. :-( )

More here, and links to the rest.

Euphemisms about Racism and Brexit 4

Metropolitan bubble

Reasons for voting Leave official word cloud: largest is “immigration”, next-largest are, in rough order of size: “country, sovereignty, control, borders, laws, British, back, independence, money, Brussels, democracy”.

In certain contexts, does “blaming others for your problems” translate as “Everything would be all right if it wasn’t for those people”?

Immigration has brought UK many benefits. But we need to recognise people’s concerns & have honest debate re migration/freedom of movement. (@RachelReevesMP)

Not all 'concerns' are valid ones. It's a euphemism for 'ungrounded prejudice' here. (@mrdavidwhitley)

'Concerns' is the current acceptable term for 'bias/groundless fear/flat-out racism', apparently. (Ross McKay ‏@RossMc11)

Today's headlines make a lot more sense if you read 'patriotic' as 'racist'. (Dean Burnett ‏@garwboy)

Actual genocide = what white ppl did every time they met a new group of non-white ppl in their expansionary colonialist projects
'White genocide' = miscegenation, loss of cultural/legal structures supporting white supremacy
(Sabine '17 ‏@ThatSabineGirl)

These people always start with 'we need to talk about the strain on public services' but it's always 'I don't like brown people' in the end. (Charlotte L. Riley ‏@lottelydia)

"Radical Terror" is of course code for "Muslims". (Andrew Brown ‏@seatrout)

AFAICS when they say Elite they mean *and only mean* this: white folks like myself who aren't on board with their blackshirt rubbish. (Benjamin Pope @fringetracker)

Perfect definition of "elite" in current discourse.
(@johnb78)

If by 'elitist' you mean 'doesn't automatically hate other humans and every other aspect of the world that isn't me' then yes, I guess I am. (Dean Burnett ‏@garwboy)

Also I hate 'metropolitan' as a sneery insult. 83% of the UK lives in an urban area. Or does he not actually mean 'metropolitan'? (Charlotte L. Riley ‏@lottelydia)

UKIP leader Paul Nuttall says unlike Islington Lab, UKIP will speak about matters that affect "real working class people and real working class communities". (Harry Cole @MrHarryCole)

Stephen Bush ‏@stephenkb That's "real" spelt with a w, h, i, t and e.


wow google translate is so powerful

PC culture has gone too far. I can’t express my opinions any more without someone saying it’s “offensive”.
Translation: I used to be able to abuse whoever I liked without anyone calling me out on it. My “opinions” are really just thinly veiled prejudices and I can’t get away with them any more.


I'm not "prejudiced" against racists because I'm not pre-judging them, I'm JUDGING them, based on the facts. (Mitch Benn ‏@MitchBenn)

Hating people who hate is not the same as people who hate people because they are not white straight Christian American men. (TheEducatedMinority ‏@Proud2Progress)

Pro tip: Anyone who tells you he is the "least racist person you've ever met" is definitely not the least racist person you've ever met. (Christopher Hayes ‏@chrislhayes)

‏Brexit was a thunderous rumble of national indignation and we misinterpret its meaning at our peril...
I met a Conservative Party member who despaired that, in his own words, two whole aisles in his local Tesco had been given over to Polish food. He was not a racist, nor even a xenophobe, but he was frustrated that cultural change had come to his neighbourhood without notice or consultation.
Mark Easton, Home Editor, bbc.co.uk
(People asked “which Tesco in the Cotswolds? Can we see pictures?” No pictures were forthcoming.)

“It is time for many of us on this side of the House to confront a hard truth,” Andy Burnham told the Commons, during an opposition debate on Brexit. “Our reluctance in confronting this [immigration] debate is undermining the cohesion of our communities and the safety of our streets." (businessinsider)

Translation in italics:
Did anyone else see Diane Abbott's car crash interview on Sunday Politics today? I very rarely agree on the side of Andrew Neil but her interview today was nothing short of embarrassing. She gave vague answers on Brexit and on immigration (didn't disapprove of immigration) and contradicted herself constantly and undermined the opinions of other cabinet members when debating these issues. (She disagreed with them.) This doesn't set an impression of a united front to the electorate. It makes Labour look more divided than ever. I was speaking to a long time Labour voter in my constituency of Sedgefield yesterday, and he put to me that he didn't know what the party's identity is anymore. It's very sad that some elements of our leadership including Miss Abbott look very much out of touch with the general consensus of large areas of the country (who want brown people to go away). I keep talking of this liberal metropolitan elite from London (who are much to welcoming to brown people) having a huge influence on Labour now and it's very damaging in areas like here in the north east which feel alienated (want brown people to go away). ... There needs to be sensible chats on immigration (agreeing that brown people should go away) and Brexit and other issues concerning ordinary (racist) people. ... We need a opposition that's going to be strong, organised and resonating with the people (agreeing that brown people should go away), and not taking their heartland areas for granted (or they won't vote for you). (Someone in the Left Wing and Proud group)

It's weird how the British English term for dog-whistle speech that grants legitimacy to racism and xenophobia is 'uncomfortable truths'. (‏@davidjmadden)

Australian MP says that immigrants just aren’t used to hearing contradictory points of view. (They’re trying to repeal anti-hate speech laws.)


2016 political dictionary: "outsider" = bigot ; "elite" = any person opposed to bigotry who isn't so poor they live in an actual ditch. (John B ‏@johnb78)


We should have a bit of time after the speech. If you are fluent in Platitudinish, please call in and provide a translation. (James O'Brien ‏@mrjamesob)

Downing Street says Brexit may cause the pound to undergo a "market correction". (@MitchBenn)

Theresa May calling for people to “come together” and “unity” on Boxing Day.
"Unity means doing what we say".
(Jonn Elledge)

What they said early on was, ‘Facts don’t work’, and that’s it. The remain campaign featured fact, fact, fact, fact, fact. It just doesn’t work. You have got to connect with people emotionally. It’s the Trump success. (Arron Banks)

More here, and links to the rest.

Wednesday, 18 January 2017

More Musical Genres


I love 80s songs that give a brief glimpse of a tawdry, pseudo-sophisticated world. "Love is a stranger in an open car." Like nostalgia for something you’ve never experienced. And in the 80s you could dress up as a character in your fantasy. In smart clothes, pearls and a hat. Or a girl on the cover of a 40s pulp novel. Or...
There are endless genres that are very slight variations of dub/house/hiphop. I think.

Is there a name for singer-songwriter indy sobbing, huffing and kvetching, with lots of words and emoting and not a trace of a tune? Or a structure?

Seem to be a lot of fey young women crooning softly over wispy synths on astronomical themes at the mo. (Rupert Goodwins ‏@rupertg)

LOL just remembered that my old flatmate used to refer to a genre known as dripping-tap minimal. (Douglas Murphy ‏@entschwindet on Autechre)

lofi chamber pop (“A bit like Gregorian thrash” says exponent on Pointless)

The end-of-Empire music-hall pastiche which was to so occupy The Kinks and to a lesser extent, also The Beatles. (rockabilly.nl Add one-man bands, brass bands, circus bands and camp vocals.)

Hauntology: An electronic music from the UK, made largely by musicians who were children in the 1970s or 80s, influenced by library music, analogue electronics, children's television (particularly stories revolving around the supernatural), some folk-rock, public service information films, modernist architecture, hip-hop, rave and electronica and occasionally older steam-punk tropes. Check out Belbury Poly, Moon Wiring Club, Advisory Circle. (Wired July 2011)

In some ways analogous to US musics such as witch house and vapourwave with similar themes of nostalgia and missed/misunderstood futures but with a distinctly different sound. (Phil Jones)

jazz swagger (Yuk.)
mellow Celtic mysticism (Andrew Male)
sophisti-pop (Yup.)
witch house
More here.

Tuesday, 17 January 2017

Reasons To Be Cheerful 18

Cheer up! Milk lasts longer.

Even in these dark times, there are some reasons to be cheerful. I don't miss the olden days. Radio 3 announcers talk spontaneously now and are not confined to reading index cards. And milk has quietly become much more long-lasting.

Towards the end of the eighties Colin Shaw of the Broadcasting Standards Council issued a mandate: ‘Although the half undressed woman has been a staple element in farce and light entertainment shows, the convention is becoming increasingly offensive to a growing number of people and should be used only sparingly … It’s not as funny as it was to have half-naked girls chased across the screen by a dirty old man. Attitudes have changed. (Beautiful Idiots and Brilliant Lunatics: A Sideways Look at Twentieth-Century London, Rob Baker)

1966 50 years ago, a girl refused to marry her rapist, leading to the abolishment of reparatory weddings. In Italy. In 1981. (Dries Allaert ‏@3_esse In 1996 rape became a criminal offence, rather than an attempt on a person’s honour.)
1966 White Australia policy ends.

1985 Irish Family Planning Act legalises sale of contraceptives for over-18s without a prescription from selected outlets. In 1992 an updated version makes contraceptives available to all citizens aged 17 years and greater. It remains the contraceptive law on the Irish statute books today.

1990 Closed shops become illegal in the UK.
1993 Wandsworth Prison gallows dismantled.
1996 Last Magdalen laundry in Ireland closes.

May 2016 Nepal ends traditional animal sacrifice event.

Dec 2016 Just overheard: 'Brits are eating FAR more sugar & its giving us diabetes!!!'  Actually UK sugar consumption has been falling for decades. (James Wong ‏@Botanygeek)

Dec 2016 Malta is first country to criminalise “gay conversion therapy”.
Dec 2016 Major league baseball bans cross-dressing hazing rituals.

Dec 2016 Indian high court bans sale of alcohol at roadside shops, and alcohol advertising on highways.
Dec 2016 Beds are being removed from Glasgow Homeopathic Hospital.

2016 UK unemployment fell by 16,000 to 1.62 million in the three months to October, says the ONS.

Jan 1 2017 London’s first female fire commissioner appointed
2017 The Catholic Church is struggling to find enough men to become priests.

2017 The Nuclear Regulatory Commission has ruled in favour of the Oglala Sioux Tribe, stopping plans for uranium mining in the Black Hills.

2017 The Marines admit women for the first time.
2017 UAE outlaws keeping wild animals as pets.


MORE REASONS
There's an Ebola Vaccine now.
Child Mortality - Down across the globe.
+9% survival rate in pacreatic cancer sufferers.
Gene responsible for ALS found.
Volunteers in India planted 50 Million trees in 24 hours.
Suicide rates down globally.
The ozone layer is repairing itself.
The Rabbinical assembly issued a resolution affirming the rights of trans and non conforming individuals.
Wild tigers numbers up.
Giant Pandas - no longer endangered.
A solar powered plane did a world trip.
Global Malaria down by 60%.
Measles eradicated from the Americas.
93% of the world's children learned to read and write.
Every major grocer and fast food chain in the US pledged to use cage free eggs only by 2025.
Wild wolves back in Europe. Owoo!
Sea World no longer breeding captive killer whales.
Global aid up by 7%.


LESS THAN
Dec 2016 Chad votes to criminalise homosexuality.
2017 Russian parliament gives approval to bill decriminalizing domestic violence
Indian women still need a husband or father’s signature to get a passport.

In Dial M for Murder, the two men go off to a boys-only dinner and Grace Kelly is left at home to darn stockings, stick cuttings into a book, and maybe listen to a play on the radio.

The great and the good of the art world were present that night. Except one, Dr Consuelo Sanz-Pastor, the Inspector of Museums in Spain. Dr Sanz-Pastor, who had actually accompanied the Prado pictures to Britain and had also played a major part in arranging the exhibition, was absent because she was a woman and, as the Daily Express stated rather casually in the article, the Royal Academy ‘never breaks with its all-male tradition’. In 1967, the Royal Academy invited Harold Wilson, the prime minister, to their annual dinner to be held on 27 May. Wilson wrote back saying: ‘I’d love to come, but with Jennie Lee.’ The Royal Academy agreed with his request that he would come but only if he was accompanied by his arts minister, and thus, for the first time since 1769, a woman was present at a Royal Academy dinner. (Beautiful Idiots and Brilliant Lunatics: A Sideways Look at Twentieth-Century London, Rob Baker)

More here, and links to the rest.

Tuesday, 10 January 2017

Buzz Words of December 2016

True meaning of Xmas

the true meaning of Christmas (I have a suspicion that it isn’t “acquiring expensive stuff”.)

narcissism, narcissist: right wingers criticising lefties, or any modern phenomena they don’t like, or millennials, or...

Bellend is the insult of 2016.

"Post-truth" may have been the word of 2016, but what was the phrase of 2016? (later) Several shouts for "metropolitan elite", "take back control" and "according to polls", none (so far) for "legitimate concerns". (Musa Okwonga ‏@Okwonga)

social strategy: social media strategy

woke
street food
(burritos, not jellied eels, chips or pizza)

Predictions that “chaos will reign” on Boxing Day as lots of people go shopping (some are trying to get all shops shut).

Twitter envy/resentment rumbles on...
finishability (and unfinishability – of Twitter, FB, socmed, RSS feeds, Tumblr etc etc er er)

dark Christmas (Krampus and others)

This year’s Xmas fashion is to make your children give stuff away, like Mrs Pardiggle in Bleak House.

All parents fear it: the day their child stops believing in Santa. (unwindly.com hed)

elf on the shelf
shade (US. What mean?)

“Western mainstream media is all corruption and lies – trust only RT.com!” (Russia Today peddles the conspiracy theories you want to hear.)

indulge
nauseating memes on the lines of “weren’t we much happier back when life was simple and we didn’t have all this technology”

I am leaving Facebook/using it less because [insert reason here].” (Click on the grey down arrow next to a post and follow the options to “see less from” or “see none from”.)

MSM is all lies!
Really?
Look – they left out an “allegedly”!


The concept of fake news was weaponized by the bad guys in record time. (Fred Scharmen on FB)

Ron Howard is an actor and director. His voice sounds perfectly normal to me.

"There have always been idiots", "we're still the same tolerant country" is the new “just ignore bullies”.
People wishing Happy Festivus/Winter Break/Solstice/Midwinterfest.

"Just a great artist no need to bring sexual orientation into it" - ancient heterosexual proverb. (@shonfaye)

Hot Cross Buns on sale at Woolworths on December 28 (in Tasmania where they still have a Woolworths)

More here, and links to the rest.

Tuesday, 3 January 2017

Grammar: Adjectives 12

Comedy Caperstraat, Flevoland: absolutely ghastly

I know I won’t like any picture described as “adorable”, or any novel described as “warm”.

Somehow managing to be both twee and vulgar, achingly unfunny, it made the Vicar of Dibley look like Father Ted. (Euan Ferguson finds Mrs Brown’s Boys even worse than expected.)

Here's your yearly reminder that Love Actually is a cinematic abomination without peer. (@davidjmadden)

The awful hamminess of everything. (Peter Bradshaw on Collateral Beauty)

Well this is a profoundly stupid idea of epic proportions. #UK considers plans to halve international #student visas. (‏@ShaziaAwan)

bracingly mean (One well-known actress on another.)

The execrable nadir of It's a Wonderful World. (RI on Louis Armstrong)

Situated in the absolutely ghastly province of Flevoland. (Enes Dedeić)

Easily lost amid frothing madness of Express and cold, sinister creep-towards-fascism of Mail, but this is a new low for Telegraph I think (@jackseale re DT hed: The Judges Versus the People)

He loved the Soho pubs, full of bitter, drunk men in tweed. (Times obit of AA Gill)

lazy decorationism (ML on Hundertwasser. He gets told never to speak of H that way and asks “You mean casually depreciative?”)

It is the spastic twitch-and-pose style that ruined American musicals until...well are we really over it yet? (imdb commenter on Flashdance)

polite make-believe (Andrew Brown II on Iceland’s first pagan temple for 1,000 years)

The Creeping Plague of Ghastly Facadism (@spitalfieldslife)

Those windswept 'cracked' voices with a deliberate complete lack of oomph. (blogger on “breathy voiced” songs in ads)

fussy, busy, fiddly: Gothic architecture

Few things set my teeth on edge more than unreadably forced, over-written whimsy. (@paulwhitelaw)

Patrick Caulfield’s 1968 screenprint Found Objects: on a plain mauve ground, a feeble collection of archaeological finds is set out: a couple of potsherds, half a dozen pebbles, a few twigs. (Brian Dillon, LRB Aug 2016)

Kevin Roberts’ “trademark drivel” (Catherine Bennett on the management theories of Kevin Roberts, sacked chairman of Saatchi and Saatchi. Example: “Ideas have been my mission and thinking round corners my passion”.)

I think this might be the most forlorn photo I've ever taken of the British seaside. (Tom Cox ‏@cox_tom)

Never underestimate the petty spite to which sexism will go. (Kate Long ‏@volewriter  On a quote from an 1890s report about women pottery painters not being allowed to use arm rests, unlike the men.)

vacuous life advice (@ejlflop on Alain de Botton)

Francis Bacon’s biographer, Michael Peppiatt, reviews a book about Bacon’s two close friends, Richard Chopping and Denis Wirth-Miller, also artists. “Dicky’s painstaking illustrations for the James Bond novels... Denis achieved a certain distinction as a painter of technically adept estuary landscapes... Much of what happened to Dicky and Denis outside Francis’s sphere of influence is mildly interesting...” (They were both much better artists than the bullying, alcoholic, self-aggrandizing Bacon. Bacon was so nasty about Wirth-Miller’s paintings that Wirth-Miller gave up art altogether, and after Bacon’s death said “I don’t want to talk about him ever again. He was an absolutely horrible man.”)

I'm in a field. It is wet. A tent beckons. This is utterly fucking ghastly, why do people go outside? (@paulwhitelaw)

woefully over-stylised direction (Paul Whitelaw)

I was born in '81, so I've lived through almost every second of the dismantling of the radiantly humane postwar settlement. Breaks my heart. (@AlexPaknadel)

Only ten days until half of Britain permanently detests the other half for doing something mindbogglingly senseless. (@diamondgeezer Yup, that happened.)

The bland cast of unknowns are adrift with this material. (Paul Whitelaw on Versailles)

ineffably shallow and meretricious (SL on Peter Greenaway)

Five brainless management fads that desperately need to die

Tragic tomato soup lasagna ... Poppy Cannon’s life outside the kitchen was far more fascinating than her dismal recipes might have suggested.

Flowers: an essentially well-meaning study of clinical depression buried beneath a tiresome mound of self-consciously offbeat bollocks. (@paulwhitelaw)

mushy, sloshy, muzzy colours (Kate Bateman on early Moorcroft)

Gem of incompetence
Derivative and pusillanimous farrago
Ill-conceived piece of sub-porn claptrap
Woeful all-star kaleidoscope
Absurd high-flown bosh

(film buff and critic Leslie Halliwell)

Set to unleash the Three Horsemen of the Dull & Dreadfully Mild Mannered Architectural Apocalypse. Poor old Thamesmead. (Catherine Slessor ‏@cath_slessor)

terrible stabs at comedic relief (imdb commenter)

staggeringly mediocre (new building in Sloane Square)

goofy and cheap-looking (postmodern building)

inane gags (for weak puns)

If you like violent mean-spiritedness and borderline homophobia, then knock yourself out with E4's new sci-fi comedy-drama, The Aliens. (@paulwhitelaw)

On the basis that whoever's irritating hateful spiteful angry wankers on Twitter must be all right, @helenlewis just gets better and better. (@IanMartin)

More here, and links to the rest.