As a rule, I try to avoid getting sucked into the prevailing media news agenda. An outsider artist if nothing else, I've always felt it important to come at things from a slightly different angle from my competitors - which would probably explain the Romi Haag business, I suppose... "The received wisdom is the enemy of the mime artiste", as my old friend and mentor Lindsay Kemp was always saying at the Beckenham Arts Lab where, as his apprentice, he had me crocheting op-art willy-warmers to sell outside the U.S Airforce bases he'd forlornly frequent in the hopes of meeting an amenable serviceman with "a highly developed flair for the visual and a strong interest in Kabuki Theatre". That's when he wasn't appearing as Nanky-Poo in the Entertainment Artistes Benevolent Fund's all-year-long Panto at the Rotunda Club, Faversham.
It was Lindsay who introduced me to Grail mythology too - now, that's one path I should never have pursued. Liberating the mind from the constraints of Judaeo-Christian/bourgeoise morality is one thing - prancing about your Los Angeles apartment bashing a pair of coconut shells together and endlessly prattling on about the Knights Who Go "Ni!" with a refrigerator stacked with vials of your own wee is quite another. Thank God for Bing! It was Crosby who sorted me out - gave me a crucifix and shipped me back over to Europe to make weird synthesizer noises in his backing band. Stills, Nash and Young weren't too impressed, of course, but the important thing was that it got me back into seeing myself as an experimental artist who had more strings to his/her bow than a well-turned ankle and a delightfully androgynous set of cheekbones. If it hadn't been for Bing, I don't know where I'd be now - probably in Epping Forest, most likely, yelling "COME BACK! IT'S ONLY A SCRATCH!" and "I fart in your general direction" at passersby in a pathetic French accent wearing a set of chainmail. Either that or in Tin Machine...
But I digress.
Where was I? Oh yes - the mainstream media. As a rule, it's to be avoided but, speaking as someone who's made his livelihood exploiting the miseries of teenage angst, I'm ever so concerned about the youth of today - especially the awful blight that is the phenomenon known in the UK as 'Binge Drink Britain'.
The sight of scantily-clad youngsters going over on their outrageously high heels, toppling drunk and sputum-flecked into the nation's gutters is enough to send shivers down the spine of even the most liberal-minded of parents - especially if your offspring's name is Nigel and you'd just been wondering what on earth had happened to the pile of Boots vouchers you'd earmarked to use on a new set of curling irons only to turn on the 9 o'clock news and see him mangling his ankles, his diamante slingbacks toppling under the weight of his booze-bloated body.
I don't want to sound old fashioned, but what's wrong with them?? I mean, no one's got anything against them having a good time. But what's with the heels?? Even a smidgeon of common sense would tell them that combining perdendicularly cantilevered footwear with a virtually intravenous rate of alcohol consumption is just asking for trouble. But no, over they go, like pole-axed flamingoes - one more notch on the five bar gate of an adminsitrative assisitant in a Tyneside Accident & Emergency Unit. Why can't they just be content with a quiet night in, flashing no colour in front of the Tattva box with a container of industrial strength adhesive and several grammes of Columbia's finest? It was good enough for my generation.
Of course, it doesn't really affect me - after all, I live in a fully deductable tax haven in Switzerland. But I do keep an eye on the old mother country via the miracle that is the BBC i-player - when I'm not watching Gavin & Stacey obviously. Or porn. So it was gratifying to see the viewers of Britain giving short shrift to emblematically spoilt, overgrown-teenage-pseudo-chav Lady Sovereign, who was voted out of the Celebrity Big Brother house last night. I've never had much time for the 'I'm Alright, Jack' attitude, but 'Sov' took the biscuit with her refusal to help with communal tasks around the house - cleaning up Vinnie Jones' splatter farts, putting rotting fruit in the bin and suchlike - and her stropping about the place in a perpetual sulk in an assortment of unflattering sweat shirts. Nice make up though - which reminds me, I have to get ready for a photo shoot and if I go out before my red and blue zig-zag has dried, I'll have more streaks than Ray Stevens...
L.U.V. on ya,