Tuesday, January 01, 2008

Happy New Year

Primrose Hill, originally uploaded by Mr Atrocity.

Happy New Year everyone. I hope your hangovers have subsided and that 2008 brings you all that you need.

Tinseltroos and I, for the second year running, had a very quiet New Year's Eve. Last year it was T who was feeling rotten, this year it was my turn. My stomach bug, I think contracted at the moderately fashionable J Sheekey fish restaurant on Christmas Eve has not yet abated. I can eat pretty much what I want now, but it has to be in very limited amounts. I think I may be the only person to lose weight over the Christmas and New Year break and I can assure that was not how I had envisioned it. We managed to have a lovely evening nevertheless. We saw The Golden Compass in the afternoon which I didn't care for much as a film though I get the impression from people that have read the books that I wouldn't care for them either. I did enjoy the bears which were done by buddies at a company I used to work for and some of the design work on the buildings was pleasing. The overall look was too "clean" for my taste but that's the director's choice not the VFX artists'. My Canadian chum J worked on the airship and she put a lot of work into dirtying it up, adding a little rust and streaks of water and grime before being told to take it all off and make the thing pristine. Wouldn't have been my choice but if that's what the director wants, that's what he or he gets.

Tinseltroos taught me how to make incense in the evening. She has several old (as in medieval) recipe books for incense to cure ailments based on the idea of the humours. I don't care for people messing with my bile, black or otherwise, but it was fun to sort out which were the "correct" ingredients to use, grind them together in a pestle and mortar, add a few drops of oil and then sprinkle the whole lot over a red hot charcoal disk and inhale. I don't think I have much truck with the methodologies and reasonings behind medieval medical instruction but that said the resultant incense smelled good and I reckon we'll be creating another batch soon. It's rather like being able to make your own perfume but considerably cheaper, and with a greater risk of razing your flat to the ground.

Having eaten dinner, Tinseltroos poured herself a glass of her new tipple, consisting of rum, milk, nutmeg and sugar to which she has become addicted and I a small glass of brandy (purely as a digestif for my poor stomach you understand) and we sat down to watch Akira. I love that film, it never fails to knock my socks off. It is rare that a film affects you deeply viscerally, emotionally and intellectually but this one really does. The film ended at around 11.45 giving us enough time to see the illumination of the city fireworks bounce off the buildings opposite and then curl up and sleep.

Today, as it's our last day before heading back to work, we took at a relaxed pace. We got up at around ten o'clock and having showered and dressed headed into Soho for brunch at Balans. Having developed a real taste for blueberry pancakes with maple syrup and streaky bacon in New York it was a joy to discover a restaurant so close to home and work that does them well. Three pancakes, three rashers, a gallon of syrup, some orange juice and a coffee really set me up for the day. They were also playing The Sidewinder by Lee Morgan on the hi-fi - perfect for me, hell for Tinseltroos, who hates jazz. Well, as Osgood Fielding III observes at the end of Some Like It Hot, "Nobody's perfect".

Following brunch we took a 2 hour walk up through Regent's Park, to dog-spot and then up past London Zoo and finally to the top of Primrose Hill where the photograph at the top of this post was taken. It's good to see the whole centre of town laid out in front of you. Having got home we're having a quiet afternoon reading and relaxing before getting ourselves psyched for the storm that will be Hellboy 2 tomorrow. I got incredibly stressed toward the end of last year and, not that I'm making it a resolution but, I'm really going to do my very best not to allow work to crush my spirit again. Partially it wasn't my fault, I got dealt some tough hands, tough work on rough projects without much respite. Having said that, a week or so away from it all does give me some perspective again and I shall try to maintain as much of that as I can whilst I try to finish up my work on Hellboy 2 and then move on to a new project. There is already a project which may come into our studio that I am scheduled to work on should we land it. I have been wanting to work on a show that chimes with my aesthetic sensibilities for a while and this could well be it. I can't say what it is but so far the meetings have gone well and I really like the director, production designer and director of photography. This is a good sign, when the team feels right, the result is usually good. I'm keeping my fingers crossed on this one.

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Blogger Beverly Sutphin said...

"I don't think I have much truck with the methodologies and reasonings behind medieval medical instruction..."

What on earth do you mean? If you'd let me near you with my leeches I'd have sorted out your upset tummy days ago. I've got a great way of drawing out green bile... what's the matter?

7:28 pm  
Blogger Churlita said...

Happy New Year to you two. Sorry to hear about the illness.

9:09 pm  

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