Tuesday, August 28, 2007


In between my hectic holiday schedule of golfing and sleeping, I'm somehow managing to find time to read Bill Bryson's latest book, "The Life & Times of The Thunderbolt Kid". If you've never read any of Mr Bryson's books then, frankly – and excuse my candor here – you're an idiot. He is by far and away the funniest writer I've ever read and writes in such an eloquent, effortless style that it sometimes makes me want not to write so much anymore because of my poor construction, sentence-wise, and right bad grammar and such like.

The book is subtitled "Travels Though My Childhood" and describes what his life was like growing up in Des Moines, Iowa in the 1950s, a time, seemingly, of great prosperity, unbounded optimism about the future and a complete absence of globalization and endless strip malls. Later in the week, when I've gotten too large and lazy to squeeze out the front door to find things to tell you about, I'll maybe reproduce a small extract from the book to show just how good the writing is. But meantime, I'm totally spending... like... WAY too much time down at the mall.

When I ventured out yesterday, I was hoping to stumble across some small town, Americana shopping experience as described by Mr Bryson – perhaps a drug store with big soda fountains (whatever they are) or a diner with a little jukebox in each booth – but regrettably, none were to be found. So it was off to the mall instead and the men reading this will like totally understand why I chose to travel a dozen miles or so along the interstate to visit the one in Milford *snigger* although I'm sorry to have to tell you boys that THAT wasn't how the town got its name. Alas.

Now let me say at this point that normally I hate to go shopping. Seriously, if you're a woman and you ever want to see my deepest, darkest side, ask me to help you pick out shoes. But shopping in America is kind of exciting, not least because the prices are so cheap. Yesterday I got Levis for $20 and a Starbucks coffee without having to remortgage my house.

Strolling around in air conditioned comfort is also very agreeable and even the preponderance of spotty youths in ill fitting clothes clutching handbags and cell phones like they were life support machines didn't annoy me as much as they do at home. Probably because they walk at a slightly slower, and therefore cooler, pace. You know… like Fonzie.

The mall also had a movie theatre where I went to see The Simpsons Movie which I thought – and regular readers used to my normal negative rants should find a seat at this point – was the best film I've seen all year. Seriously. Talk about good writing… which we were earlier… with the Mr Bryson thing… remember?

Anyway, for those of you who put in shopping requests and have skipped the previous six paragraphs to find out if I've been successful yet, here's the update…

Lip Gloss Girl – no luck yet finding a Benefit retailer. May have to go into New York on Wednesday. Bummer eh?

Gordon – Apple stuff is dead cheap here. Still want to go to Glasgow?

Lesley – Sunshine is bountiful here in the land of plenty. I have packed a little away every day for you.

Wee Man – no calipers yet but I've got a crane to lift me off the couch if that's any good?

Morv – Triangular chocolate secured. Now you can call me the 'Candy Man' without fear of disapproving looks.

Dave* - I couldn't remember if it was Colorstay eye shadow or mascara I was supposed to get. Then I remembered it was eyeliner (wasn't it?) but the store had too much choice – a crayon version and a liquid liner. I hummed and hawed and nearly got ejected for scratching too much but eventually, rather than choose one, I got you two of both. Hope this is okay.

*not really

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Woah... Dude... That's, Like... Woah..

Is it just me or does Apple's iPod shuffle software sometimes totally freak you out with the choices it makes?

When I was at Edinburgh airport the other morning feeling tired and emotional (well, it was VERY early… and I hadn't eaten yet) waiting to board my transatlantic flight, the first song selected by the Totally Freaky Software was Steve Earle singing "Goodbye". If you've never heard it, this is a song so heartbreaking – "I can't remember, if we said goodbye" - that it almost made me want to sprint home and embrace the outside walls of my house whilst whimpering, "I'm SO sorry, I don't know what I was thinking, leaving you all empty and alone for two whole weeks!"

However, just as I was getting ready to start sprinting*, the song finished and on came Paul Weller singing "C'mon Baby Let's Go", an altogether more appropriate sentiment to begin a journey. This choice of song was also freaky because a mere ten hours earlier, I'd been singing it in a rehearsal room with The Signals as we established it as a rockin' new addition to our set. For the forthcoming tour. Sometime in the future.

Song no.3 was John Mayer singing "Belief" which, at first glance, doesn't appear to totally support the whole freaky software hypothesis. But John Mayer grew up in Fairfield, Connecticut, the ultimate destination for my journey and from where I now type these words… at 4.30am… because of the whole freakin' jet-lag nightmare.

Okay, so the bubble on my theory was burst somewhat when the 4th song was something or other by one of The Osmonds (I'd been hoping for "Airport" by The Motors) but still…

*i.e. strolling at a marginally accelerated speed.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Something Fo... Hang On, It's Only Wednesday!

Tomorrow, I am leaving The World’s Wettest Country* and going on my holidays to America to visit my brother and his new(ish) bride (I nearly wrote ‘latest’ just then!) who, he reliably informs me, live in the “constant blistering heat” of Connecticut. Near New York. Aye right!

If I get time, I’ll try and update Dave with all the latest movers and shakers from what is, let’s face it, the cultural capital of the world but free time may be sparse what with all the bloody shopping I’ve committed to doing.

Already I’m importing half a ton of Cadbury’s Dairy Milk chocolate to the newly(ish)-weds (‘cause Hershey’s “is p#sh” apparently) and have orders to bring back copious supplies of eye liner and lip gloss. So if you’re reading this and thinking, “Oooh, I could just get Neil to pick up the latest Nike Air Max Latte Making Lightsaber,” then speak up now. Similarly, if you’re “chilling” there in your “barker lounge” in your “yard” just by the “sidewalk” outside your “apartment” and you realise you’re running short of irn-bru, let me know and I’ll pack up a shipment. Those whom I anticipate may be in need include…

Kell – whisky?
Lesley - sunshine?
Morven – more Jelly Belly beans?
Donald – new Fender Jazz bass?
Wee Man – transatlantic knee surgery?
Bruce – Soccer For Dummies?
He Who Shall Not Be Named - Porn?
Dave – it was Rimmel eyeliner, right?

*Official Scottish Tourist Board Branding

Monday, August 20, 2007

The Crucible

Received in the post this morning…

Dear Mr Suderlang (oops… bad start!)

You are invited to have a say on things that affect your life by becoming a member of the West Lothian Citizens’ Panel.

The Citizens Panel is a way for “local people” to give their views on services in their area, and to influence decision makers. The enclosed leaflet gives more information…”

…but nowhere in the leaflet could I find the section on when and where the monthly witch-burnings take place. So I extinguished my flaming torch, put down my pitch fork and went back to bed.

Friday, August 17, 2007

Something For The Weekend 29

Dave… apologies… but I’ve got a bit too much going on at the moment so you’re gonna have to rely on other sources to help find you something to do this weekend. I think there are a few shows happening in town though if that’s any help?

Mind you, I did go and see ‘Evan Almighty’ last weekend and it was okay… ish. Unfortunately I had my usual ten-minute nap somewhere in the middle so I missed the crucial scenes where they undoubtedly explained why two polar bears hiked all the way from the North Pole to Virginia to board an ark which had been constructed to deal with a local flood that impacted, at most, a fifty square mile radius. Morgan Freeman really doth moveth in mysterious ways.

Oh, and I also went to see ‘Transformers’ during the week when I was stuck in the middle of t’Yorkshire by myself with no whippet of my own to take for a walk. That director Michael Bay really likes blowing things up so it was all a bit noisy and so forth for me. I also got a bit confused as to which of the machines were goodies and baddies and, indeed, why they were all fighting in the first place, but that was probably because there was a really hot girl in every scene distracting my attention. Now was she the one that ‘transformed’ into a Hummer? Or is that a different movie I’m thinking of?

Friday, August 10, 2007

Something For The Weekend 28

Busy, busy, busy this week Dave, what with the half-decent weather and the golf and the football and the band practice and… hey… if I added parachuting and running-down-a-beach-in-slow-motion-for-no-apparent-reason to my sporty lifestyle activities, I’d be perfect for that TV ad… you know… for the product that has wings? Flash Wipes is it?

All of which means I haven’t had time to scratch my arse never mind attend any uninspiring art exhibitions or walk down the Royal Mile to be assaulted by Home Counties students trying to get me to come and see their “cutting edge” Fringe Festival show featuring dwarf-juggling fire-eaters and Nicholas Parsons.

I did spend a ridiculous amount of time trying to work out how to transfer music from cassette tapes on to my computer but technology and the 21st century is such a pain in the arse (an arse, of course, which I don’t have time to scratch) that I almost threw one of your famous hissy fits and smashed the big white box thingy that contains all the volts and megabytes and such. (Seriously, if anyone knows an easy way to do this, please let me know.)

However, I did finally manage to put at least one long lost home recording on the interweb so if you’d like to hear a fairly poor quality rendition of a less-than-cheery song (do I know how to promote stuff OR WHAT?!) click on these green words that are underlined.

Have a pleasant weekend. Cheers, Edge.

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

I'm Mandy, Fly Me

So… anyway… there I was… down south recently “on business” and, because of the different places I had to visit, was forced to travel on Easyjet, Europe’s least aptly-named organisation. I don’t think I’ve quite got enough energy or will to trawl up all the bad memories of their orange garb, delayed departures, £6 bag of “bar nuts” or the-world’s most-pointless-service “speedy boarding” so instead let me share this small extract from their fairly interesting in-flight magazine called, unsurpringly, “easyJet inflight”… you see what they did there?

This made me smile as I pondered whether a mischievous employee in the advertising department had placed the lower ad right next to the upper ad on purpose. What do you think? Oh Christ, I've turned into the cross-eyed weirdo from "That's Life"! Next week... the Virgin Mary appears in my pizza...

Friday, August 03, 2007

Something For The Weekend 27

Dave… I’m sure, like me and the rest of the interweb, you’re still reeling from last weekend’s Videogate debacle, especially since it turns out that you might have had more of an involvement in it than was first thought. But no matter, I tried to put it all behind me this week by getting out the house and taking up an offer to attend a “private viewing” of a new Andy Warhol exhibition in Edinburgh – me and 175 other “lucky” winners of a company competition.

Being so young ‘n all, you probably don’t remember much about Andy Warhol although his stint as keyboard player for Duran Duran in the early 80s might ring a bell… didn’t you once tell me that your mum used to sing a lullaby version of “Girls On Film” to you to persuade you to dance for her Super 8 cine camera after she’d dressed you up in that pink tutu?

Anyway, Andy Warhol was also an “artist” – according to the programme notes I have here – and this exhibition at the big Greek-looking building in the middle of Princes Street, the name of which escapes me, is the biggest retrospective of his “art” ever displayed in Scotland. It opens to the fee-paying public tomorrow so if you fancy kissing some hard-earned cash goodbye to view a pile of Campbell’s soup tins and 423 copies of the same Marilyn Monroe photo, then this is the very fellow for you.

Call me a philistine if you want but I know what I like and I much preferred the competition-winning efforts of Edinburgh schoolchildren, some as young as three and four, which lined the foyer of the building where the free drink was being served. I’m sure if I was a merlot-sippin’ Guardian reader, I too would agree that his work is “highly charged” and “a form of radical realism” but it didn’t move me at all… except to the nearest McDonald’s where I underwent my own version of radical realism.

Finally, before I sign off and try and extract the last remnants of Big Mac pickle from my fillings, HOW GOOD was last night’s episode of “Scrubs”? Please, please tell me you saw it? If you didn’t, the simple, innovative genius of the plot was this… a woman is admitted to the hospital complaining that she hears singing wherever she goes so the whole episode becomes a musical with ten original and brilliantly composed songs including soon-to-be-golf-tour-stalwart “Everything Comes Down To Poo”.

My favourite though is the one which you can now view below. Dave, I’m not afraid to admit that I watched this and thought of you… and your “significant other”.

Enjoy, Edge.

Thursday, August 02, 2007

Greatest Sitcom Ever...

For Dave... and his "significant other"..