Thursday, 24 October 2013

A Pug's Guide To Dating by Gemma Correll.

"Wrinkly of face and fragrant of backside, the pug is one of nature's most romantic creations..."

Following on from A Pug's Guide To Etiquette, self-proclaimed pug guru Gemma Correll is back with her latest installment of doggy self-help, this time in matters of the heart, for the lovable "twenty pound, wheezing, farting lothario".

As always with Correll's nifty little guides it is filled with cute and funny illustrations of wary and silly looking pugs- undoubtedly inspired by her two muses, Mr. Pickles and Bella. The book is a hilarious parody of modern dating and a great look-book into her signature drawing of the funny little canine.

And so for the pug in love, or indeed for the pug who is devoid of a mate, A Pug's Guide to Dating is the ultimate love-bible, covering the basics of the dating game from charming chat-up lines; "did you just roll in fox poop or is that your natural aroma", to how to perfect first impressions and chance encounters.

We are introduced to the philosophy of love- it holds no boundaries over size, colour or breed as Correll offers pugs in want of love everywhere tips on grooming and what to wear on that all important first date: "an enlightened pug knows how to make the best of whatever he has to work with".

And for those looking to inject some romance into their current relationships, Correll suggests some rather fanciful activities like stargazing, serenades or sharing the love over pan-fried tissues in an organic peanut butter jus and a "Yellow Snow" margarita.

Suitable pet names for your amour.. 

And then, as is life, the book delves onto the more fragile topics of relationships and how to come out successfully on the other side because "there are more plenty more dogs in the park".

All in all, this works as a great gift for any Gemma Corell fan and is also great as a little coffee table book as we are guided through the world of canine love. Go on human! Pick up your copy of A Pug's Guide To Dating from Ryland Peters & Small for £9.99

Monday, 14 October 2013

My attempts at being healthy are (severely) lacking...

OK so I haven't been for a run in a week and a half because life has been crazy- AKA I love my sleep when I'm having to work 7 days a week. WHAT'S MORE my lovely mother and awesome baker has not been helping my case. Check out these treats she's been cooking over the last week:

Starting from the left: Home-made apple biscuits, Baclava and Bread Pudding

Yes, that's right, ALL THIS in just 7 days. And that Baclava you see there, yeah, that's the second batch. God help my sugar levels for I think I need a dose of willpower. 
I can safely say I never knew my mum was such an avid baker but it's certainly not helping my efforts at being healthy.

SO I've decided that this is the plan:
- Enjoy my birthday week.
- Get back on running next Monday.

Fair enough, right?
I probably will have to start from the beginning when it comes to my running/walking times. Even though it's been a little over a week my inactivity will probably make an (unfortunate) impact on my fitness level.

In interning news, I'm really enjoying my time at BA Highlife and it's spurring me on to save and get my ass a NCTJ diploma.
Today I finished writing copy for a piece going in the December issue and I got to sit in on a production meeting. I also did some admin work sorting through a load of competition entries of drawings sent in by children- they were so adorable!

Friday, 11 October 2013

The BA Highlife

I finally managed to land internship number two, this time at British Airways Highlife Magazine. Today marked the end of my first week a the magazine and what can I say about my time there so far? It's a really good experience, no really. I'm not just saying it because it's an actual REAL-LIFE PROPER INTERNSHIP, I actually feel like I'm learning a lot from my time there. Why? Well firstly I'm not just sat there, ho hum, twiddling away my fingers as the forgotten intern with nothing to do but wait to make tea and deliver people's post.
Secondly, the folk at Highlife seemed to have chucked me in to the deep end with a variety of tasks sent my way, from the usual admin-y stuff to sub-editing, transcribing, research, etc to actually being allowed to sit in meetings. How cool is that?! In my experience I've never been allowed to sit in meetings and to seriously contribute ideas.
Thirdly, everyone is super friendly and welcoming which is just what you need when you're the intern with little clue into the everyday workings of the magazine.
And finally, I'm coming to realize that travel and life style are areas I'd love to write about.
I definitely recommend getting involved with BA Highlife if magazines and travel writing is your thing. The only downside is that the internship is only two weeks which is incredibly short. But I'm hoping to make the most of my time there (and secretly hoping I'll land a job too).

Thursday, 3 October 2013

Walking the red carpet: Filth movie premier

On Monday night my lovely and wonderful friend Teresa invited me along to the premier of the new James McAvoy flick, Filth. We had the pleasure of walking the blue carpet (yep, no red carpet here!) and sitting only a few inches away from the stars of the film, including its director, Jon S. Baird. It was such a great night and a pretty surreal experience. I mean how often do you get to sit in the same room as James McAvoy, Imogen Poots, Jamie Bell and Irvine Walsh? I mean wow.

Teresa managed to get a photo of James McAvoy. We were so close she had to lean back to be the photo! 

Now the film. 


Unsurprisingly now Scotland's current number one film, this comedic yet gritty crime drama, based on the novel by Irvine Walsh, is set in Edinburgh with McAvoy fronting the show as corrupt cop Bruce Robertson.

Sex, drugs, violence and the disturbing reality of alcoholism and addiction are the obvious themes of a story concocted by Walsh. I mean, who could forget Trainspotting? Filth stays in line with these themes, it's in the word- a massive hint for what's to come.

The film opens with the brutal murder of a Chinese student- cue the entrance of
Sergeant Robertson and his colleagues. But the record is soon set straight as the film becomes much more than just a mystery murder case. Robertson is out for the demise of his colleagues as the film follows him on his ventures of (rather creative) plotting and scheming in his bid to attain that all important promotion. 

Robertson is cunning and conniving but, like any successful villain, his charm is flawless as Mcavoy delivers a charismatic character who knows how to get what he wants. But that is no compliment, for Robertson is the ultimate anti-hero; sexist, racist, violent and psychotic which manifest as we find out more about our detective sergeant. He is a part of "The Pigs" which becomes emblematic of his amorality. But Robertson is all too aware of this as he is haunted by the face of an ugly, squealing pig upon looking in the mirror. Bruce Robertson is Filth.

As the film goes in we witness his mental and physical deterioration as his cases are left unsolved and his drug abuse festers. This film is ultimately about his downfall which McAvoy has portrayed on such an astute level. 

On a whole I would say that Baird's visualisation of Walsh's novel is brilliantly entertaining and creative. Admittedly some scenes had me feeling somewhat uneasy as it transcends in to the mind of Bruce. We hallucinate with him and follow his every evil move, experiencing his highs and his lows that come with his drug abuse and the grief after losing his wife and daughter. Multiple hints are dropped throughout the film that Bruce's problems stem from his childhood after the death of his brother but nothing is wholly explicit. The film is almost a tragicomedy with scenes that'll have you laughing out loud at Robertson's ingenuousness but may have you turning away your head as the film reaches its bitter close. McAvoy has done well. 

If you're going to watch this film, be prepared.