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December 27, 2002

Long and winding slide - wheeeee!!!!!

Christmas is a time for giving gifts and seeing the joy in the faces of others. And this has been a real year for that. But it's also been one that's had a few rather wonderful ripples in my own life.

Thing One: Griffin and Sabine
I was finally given the first book in Nick Bantock's wonderful series of Griffin and Sabine books. As a regular at a lot of new media gatherings I've repeatedly seen a demo of 'Ceremony of Innocence' - the RealWorld CD-ROM of the books, and while I was never that fussed about the CD-ROM, I fell utterly in love with the artwork.
When the book arrived in my lap I found myself turning it over as a respected precious object - there's just something about the format, binding and cover art that means you can't help it.
And then you start reading. And studying the beautiful artwork.
And you finally get to your first letter.
Reaching into the little envelopes feels like an almost violating act - and the sensuousness of the writing gives it an electric, erotic, exciting charge.
I had to ration myself - it felt too much to read the whole book in one go.
And, like the daemons in Philip Pullman's 'Dark Materials' trilogy, you accept the fundamental mystical construct of the books and trust in it.
By the time I came to the last page I was on the edge of my seat...and actually said 'No!!!!' out loud.

Suffice to say, the remainder of the series are now on order from amazon in America.

If you've got any sense you'll get them too!

Thing Two - Lemon Jelly - Lost Horizons
What an album of joy! You know the way that you can put an album by Radiohead or Dot Allison (or even Natalie Imbruglia) on in the background, and - even at almost subliminal volumes - it'll slowly drag the mood in the room down till you're wondering why you bother with anything at all. Until you realise it's because you've got that bloody fab-but-so-effing-maudlin album on again.
This is the opposite.
It's like having a lovely great hug. The world seems a lovely place just by its very existence. Yes, even more so than Royksopp.

Posted by Tom Dolan at December 27, 2002 02:01 AM

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