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March 27, 2006

Doherty - my new love for diet with Preston

So I'm walking along the street, spotting yet another story in the Evening Standard about Pete bloody Doherty and his off/on relationship with drugs/kate mosss/his band.

But I'm puzzled about the size of the support network he must now need. There's PR people galore, minders, legal people and private clinics galore.

The Libertines weren't my bag, but they sold a few records. Not *tons* of records though. Babyshambles seem to be even fewer people's bag.

So where's the money for all this network coming from? Surely not from his record label.

And it hits me - he is the indie Chantelle.

Someone somewhere (and it may not be Doherty himself) must be running Pete for the press like a more cool and underground Kerry Katona, Posh or Jade Goody. Is his lifestyle and PR identity not the subject of newspaper intrusion, but being funded *by* newspaper intrusion?

If he appears on the cover of Grazia you'll know I'm right...

Posted by Tom Dolan at 02:07 PM | Comments (1)

[Close] to the Last Moment

Quick quick quick!

I often don't get round to reading the Guardian Guide until a bit too late, so I've only got until the end of today to hear the first episode of Radio 2's 3-part documentary on ZTT uber-goddess Anne Dudley. Art of Noise, strings on ABC's "the look of love", pretty much every keyboard and orchestral arrangement on Frankie Goes To Hollywood, the soaring strings on Pulp's "Different Class".

Go listen go listen go listen...before it's too late.

Posted by Tom Dolan at 09:32 AM | Comments (4)

March 25, 2006

Chateau Reignac

Tim and Catherine came over for dinner last weekend, and brought a bottle of this rather fine Claret they'd picked up at swanky west-london wine shop Jereboams.

Chateau Reignac was just a 'bordeaux superieur' which could have meant anything - not that I know anything about claret - but oooooh it was just marvellous. As I'm largely a rhone/burgundy man these days it was also a blockbuster of a return to Cabernet Sauvignon. Rich and leathery and sumptuous and chewy with hints of cardamom and spice. Just a faint memory now, but this is to remind me to go and buy some more and try it again.

What it is to get some of that Holland Park glamour... :-)

Posted by Tom Dolan at 10:03 PM | Comments (0)

March 23, 2006

Meow - posting from work blackberry - work continues

Sadly the blogberry is still ongoing.

My work exchange server sends the email as multipart mime, and tacks a whopping great legal disclaimer on the end.

None of which is handled by meow at the moment.

So, after some VERY crap Perl programming from me, expected behaviour should be resumed.

Posted by Tom Dolan at 06:30 PM | Comments (0)

Flying while pregnant - insurance tips

Most insurers bail out at 26 or 28 weeks, which isn't long if you were
waiting till 20 week scan gave the all clear.

Tesco and .Marks+Spencer both do insurance much later - 2 months and 8 weeks
respectively. M+S was cheaper for us, but insisted on sending travel
insurance docs by post within 5 days if done online. Not the
pdf-in-confirmation-email I was hoping for. Bum.

Posted using Meow

Posted by Tom Dolan at 08:08 AM | Comments (0)

March 21, 2006

Adaptive Design in the face of brutal e-commerce

Is it just me, or is anyone else using the previews on the iTunes music store to work out which CDs to go into HMV and buy?

Posted by Tom Dolan at 07:56 PM | Comments (0)

I am become my own demographic

I'm slowly coming to terms with the real reason the likes of me play mobile games. Not that I play many, but when I do, they tend to be on my handset.

I will probably never get around to getting an Xbox or Playstation. Even now they've dipped under the magic £100 point.

And even if I did, I wouldn't have the time to play it anyway.

So my gaming has to be consigned to a cheap device I carry around with me for snatched moments when I just don't feel like a book, or Sudoku, or staring at more flashcards of chinese characters. But do feel like Lemmings.

(Actually the last point is a major bonus too. I'm odd in that I skipped most of the 'fun' computers one can have as a kid. We went straight from a ZX81 to dad's IBM XT with twin disk drives...and then pretty swiftly onto an AT with 20MB hard disk. So while others were playing Elite, I was playing with early vector graphics packages and a pen plotter. I was so desperate to play breakout, I got halfway through programming it as a fiendish set of macros in Lotus Symphony before realising it had no way to respond to realtime keystrokes. So finally I get to spend the time with Sonic etc I feel I never had. Bring on the BBC B and Spectrum emulators for Nokia Series 60...)

Posted by Tom Dolan at 07:31 PM | Comments (1)

Going a bit crazy with blogging interfaces now

Finally got round to 99% setting up meow, so I can finally blog by emailing from the blackberry. A cool bit of software, even if the installation is a bit too hardcore for someone like me. (One error just wouldn't go away, but I couldn't be bothered to look up the syntax difference between a hash so I could work out why an undef value was appearing. It's late, after all.)

Posted by Tom Dolan at 12:43 AM | Comments (0)

March 20, 2006

Why blogging is like music 0.1

Sometimes, to get your juices going again, you just need a new bit of kit. Hello MarsEdit. (A year after everyone else.) How much nicer your interface is than MovableType's.

Posted by Tom Dolan at 10:59 PM | Comments (0)

Oh, and in 'Other News'

For those that don't yet know...I'm going to be a dad again in late July. Scan no2 says it's a healthy, largeish, boy.

Hopefully we won't be repeating any of the preamble to this again.

Posted by Tom Dolan at 10:46 PM | Comments (1)

Dietary Economics

The last few weeks have been kind of hectic really. No time to post (and, as Chris 'not rageboy' Locke was also saying when I bumped into him at 3GSM, I'm not in a position to post the really interesting stuff).

The blog's not the only thing that's got ragged - finances are adrift, laundry and ironing piling up, garden overgrowing. Just part of a general mess of tiredness.

An unwelcome side-effect of this increased level of disorganisation is that our ability to book Sainsburys to come and deliver food at a time when we might actually be in, and be in a position to eat it, occasionally slips up. And last weekend, because we didn't have the time to go old-skool and actually visit the shops, we got Ocado in instead.

It was pricey. As Waitrose is.

But then I was thinking - why is Waitrose pricey? There's no pension fund or merchant bank breathing down its neck demanding year-on-year growth. There's no desperate need to cut costs to the point where the business is crippled just so the directors can get one more year's bonus out of the system. They don't feel the need to compete on the price of a tin of beans just to bring in the customers.

And the more I thought about it, the more I thought that Waitrose costs what it does because:

they have decent quality food*
they pay their suppliers decently
they pay their staff properly
they have enough staff

So actually, the price you pay at Waitrose is the price food should be costing.

Must remember to compare their wine prices with my very favourite mutual one day, just to find the price of that distribution and shelfspace.

* especially their Tiramisu - by far the best supermarket one

Posted by Tom Dolan at 10:41 PM | Comments (0)


I shall be working from home quite a bit this week. Leading into the lottery of discovering whether or not I had chickenpox myself when I was small.

(But Daisy's bearing up very well, all things considered.)

Posted by Tom Dolan at 10:07 PM | Comments (0)

March 06, 2006

I'm Hiring

MTV are after two people to work on a very large web/mobile community and user-generated content project - a producer and a technical project manager.

Producer needs to be graphically literate and know about animation, music and video as well as managing a community.
TPM needs to have worked on projects involving multiple external agencies and technical partners and understand getting things done in mobile space. IA, user testing etc.

Our technology team are mid-restructure, so you'd need to start as freelance and then become permanent if no-one who is about to be made redundant has the required skills. (I personally think this is unlikely because of the mobile skills needed).

International travel may be involved, depending on the technical partners appointed.

It's a cool project, based a stones throw from Oxford Circus, and you get to put MTV on your CV.

Full jobdescs available - email me dolanDOTtomATmtvneDOTcom

Posted by Tom Dolan at 05:24 PM | Comments (0)

March 03, 2006

Why tech providers still have sooooooo far to go...

In the wake of 3GSM, I've had a stand exhibitor send a survey to me:

Which of the following companies best fits with the following statements: Sun, HP, Cisco, IBM, Sony, Samsung etc etc (tick all that apply) {TD: blogreaders, please imagine grid of checkboxes here}

Provides innovation at a price customers can afford, delivered with an experience that sets them apart.

Focuses on adaptive enterprise which has business and IT synchronized to capitalize on change.

Um, I don't think I've ever put a sentence together like that in my life....

Posted by Tom Dolan at 03:28 PM | Comments (0)