Love Actually, in a tree


Love Actually, in a tree on the heath

They still exist, the true romantics.

“Ah love, a dreaded bond, yet so easily severed …”

And then there are those that are more sceptical.

This picture is taken on Hampstead Heath, and I expect the carvings to be several years old.
Did they live happily ever after I wonder.

Have you ever carved the name of your loved one in a tree?

Writing, writing, writing


Good words from screen writing Guru Richard Curtis.

I thought 6 days and nights on a train, think about the huge amount of time I will have to write. Well I did write a bit here and there, but not the stuff I was supposed to. How could I, I was sharing my compartment with an Englishman remember. My train adventure made me miss 3 writing classes and this Monday, which is less than 48 hours from now, I need to deliver a completely finished script (for a 10 minute short film) and an essay. So guess what my weekend looks like.

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Mockba, 26 February 2007

My hotel is located in one of Moscow’s suburbs in the South East. It’s cheap and it takes about 20 minutes by metro to the Red Square and Leninski. Absolutely doable especially because the Metro station is about 50 meters from my hotel. I had done some research on the Moscow metro up front (which is recommended I’d say) and knew how their ticket system worked. You can buy 1, 5 or 10 trip tickets, and since I knew I was going to use the metro quite a bit, I showed the woman behind the window my 2 hands, telling her I wanted a 10 trip card. That went fine, and being used to using my Oyster card in London using the Moscow card wasn’t that different.

Back to my hotel – located this far from the centre, this also means that this is a non tourist area, and chances to find people speaking English are zero. Even the people working at the reception of the hotel don’t speak any English at all.

It’s an area that gives a good impression of authentic Russian city life so to speak. There are loads of small shops and stalls in the area selling drinks, food, magazines, newspapers, snacks, meat, bread, soap, well you name it, they sell it. With a bit of goodwill and pointing at things I manage to buy things like chocolate, Pringles and Coca Cola (hey I am on holiday). There is also a tiny (and I mean tiny) DVD shop on the same block.

Surely a normal person with a well functioning head wouldn’t begin to consider doing this with a Russian vocabulary as large as, well, one word. That was what I was thinking.
But I wasn’t a normal person.
And so, I stepped inside.
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Is it Love Actually


(Written: New York, 33rd St – Picture: New York, 5th Ave)

While I drink my Milky Way tea in the Starbucks right beside the Empire State Building (and let’s be honest there are worse places to drink your tea – behind your computer screen at work just to name one) I read (or rather greedily indulge) my new book:

Writing the Romantic Comedy.

Sold out in Waterstones London, but Barnes & Noble in New York luckily had it. And even if you have no intention of becoming a screen writer, if you love romantic comedies this book is like chocolate cake with cream and a little red cherry on top.

While reading – a girl sits down at a table next to me.
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Don Juan in Soho, Donmar – review

Rhys Ifans in Notting Hill« Rhys Ifans in his classic Fancy-a-fuck t-shirt in Notting Hill

To be totally prepared for The Vertical Hour, I am doing a small theatre warming up these weeks. I saw Love Song, Love or Money, and today it was time for Don Juan in Soho. Three plays about Love actually, three very different plays in three different theatres. They are all great and recommended, but this last one was definitely the funniest one.

OK, you have all seen Notting Hill of course. If not go rent it (no Bill isn’t even in it), it is a lovely feel good film, an excellent Christmas watch, written by Richard Curtis, with Julia Roberts and Hugh Grant in it. Hugh Grants lovely Welsh flatmate in that film, Spike, was played by Rhys Ifans. (The same Rhys Ifans who played against Daniel Craig in Enduring Love by the way, which has in fact Bill in it. By golly, I need to see that film again, Daniel and Bill in one film! Hello, you are rambling again. Oh, yes, sorry.).

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Tina Dickow – Dingwalls, Camden

Drawing with Light
Drawing with lights in Dingwalls : Love Actually in Lights

It was about half a year ago I last saw her, in Dingwalls in Camden. At that time I had just arrived in London. Now 6 months later, Camden is a place I know relatively well, and I am no longer that intimidated by the “Do you want skunk” question. I rushed there right after work, needed something to eat and decided to give the happy hour ?2 Chinese shop a go. I hoped my stomach would be happy for more than an hour with this, and I didn’t want to know how long this food had been simmering, probably all day. A large coke in Dingwalls takes care of most of the possible stomach disturbers. Tina Dickow is magical, her songs still seem to hit something as I found myself crying more than once during the concert.
It was a good night.

Here is a bit for you to hear

(limited availability – you’re too late …)
She is touring the UK at the moment, highly recommended.

One
One touch can fill a life of longing
Not much is so much more than nothing
Yeah – All you need is
One
An open smile to win you over
One single step will bring you closer
Yeah – All it takes is one

And when you?re running for cover
And you feel the sky falling down upon you
And when it feels like forever
Since you?ve seen the face of someone who loves you

Then one is all that you need
All that you need to keep you warm
Is all that you need
All that you need to move you on
It?s all that you need
All you need is

One

Crossing London in a Mini

London

The day started early, we wanted to catch the early sunlight on the first pictures. At 7.00am I stood up and wondered if we were going to see any sunlight at all. London was having a shower, not a regular one, a massive one. A shower where you can hear the water hitting the streets. I passed the post office, trying to stay dry under my umbrella, picked up another package than I had hoped for, and hopped out of the rain into the bus up north. Our first location was Highgate Cemetary, which is located in the north of London. It is a huge graveyard, beautifully located. It has been around for quite a while, and the surrounding forest has merged together with the gravestones. It is a great sight.

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Europride, London

It was a beautiful and long parade, with thousands of people participating, from policeofficers to dragqueens, from gay footballclubs to gay volleyballclubs, and from marines to gay people from nearly every religion present in London. It was a colourful parade with a lot of beautiful people, some dressed in uniform, and some dressed in, well, nearly nothing. The Union Jack was transferred to shades of pink today. I had a lot of explaining to do to the pirate, whom I had taken with me. He was sitting on my shoulder, and asked a lot of questions. I guess he had never seen anything like this before. I explained him that it was a celebration of gay people, a way to improve the acceptance of the gay community and a protest against discrimination and homophobia. I think he understood.

They came through Oxford Street and Regent Street and went on to Piccadily Circus. Again London closed it’s roads for a big event. What a city.

There were several good slogans passing by, but my absolute favourite was the one from Amnesty International:

Love is a human right.

I couldn’t agree more. It’s all about Love Actually.

The Girl – in a lot of cafe’s !

The GirlThe GirlThe GirlThe Girl

I don’t know exactly where I got the inspiration from, it suddenly was there. OK this triggered me a bit, and so did this film and this one too. I got ideas from listening to music, and many of them are a direct interpretation of a song. Making them absolutely relaxes me, and is something that seems to tame the bouncing balls for a short while, which is rather nice.

After making quite a lot of them, I got (another) very crazy idea. Wouldn’t it be really cool to leave Denmark, leaving behind some kind of Goodbye (and thanks for all the fish) note. After my London decision I have learned that silly ideas sometimes can have great results, so I contacted Go-card. Go-Card is a free postcard service, distributing postcards to all the cafe’s in Denmark. Most of them are commercial postcards, but they do support artists too, and give them a chance to publish their work for free through these postcards.
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Love Actually on a wall

Love Actually on a wall
Every day I bike past this anonymous appartmentbuilding, because it is located about 50 meters from where I work. And suddenly one day (about a week or two ago) the building got a bit more interesting. I know that graffitti normally shouldn’t be encouraged, but today I brought my camera, stopped shortly, and here you go. I always have to smile when I pass it.

Love Actually on a wall.