I just watched The Hangover on FBO. It was much like a real one: shit. It never ceases to amaze me how much completely bad art gets through Hollywood. It shouldn’t amaze me. I work in advertising. What we do doesn’t even make it into the category of art, but is very often bad. It’s the fate of many a creative project funded by some form of big business. The enormous amounts of money, while you’d think they’d help to improve a project, actually get in the way of anything good being made. The people paying the money automatically want some (usually creative) input into the project (which is almost unfailingly disastrous). The people receiving the money are so desperate not to lose it, they’ll do pretty much anything to please the cash suppliers, even if it means raping their own art and turning it into some kind of limping and terminally ill Frankenstein. It’s shuddersome. (“What rough beast, its hour come round at last, slouches towards Bethlehem to be born?” WB Yeats, The Second Coming. That, by the way, is some seriously good art; one of my favourite poems of all time.) Anyway. It still surprises me that with all the quite amazingly talented writers, producers, directors etc swarming around LA, movies so sloppy in form, scripting, dramatic and comedic timing so often get made (not to mention significantly hyped). They are towering shitheaps of shoddiness, with gaping holes of done-too-fast or too-many-writers strewn all through them. But enough of that. Bad art be gone! And on to the present, in which I am currently (a little bug-eyed due to the hour). I’m feeling really good though, because I had a good day of feeling a new kind of strong in my non-drinking zone. We had our end of year work lunch, which wasn’t as rowdy as other years (probably due in large part to my own lack of rowdiness) but was very pleasant. I had a properly good time hanging with my work mates right through until the early evening, and felt no need for the aid of the dreaded drop. Which brings me to the other present, the one I received from Secret Santa. It was a five-bottle set of mini flavoured Absolut vodkas (I love those little bottles) accompanied by a pocket-sized bible containing a passage on the heavenly virtues of not drinking. I liked it. And the bible provided hours of entertainment at the table (you ever read it? It’s some crazy shit.). Oh gee, I can actually, like right now, hear my flatmate’s girlfriend puking in our toilet (the result of an unfortunate collision with some Friday night drinks). Oops, and now she’s smashed something. Maybe time she went to bed. Maybe time I did too. I can always give her my bible to read if she needs it tomorrow morning.