Howie Hot Five for… 3rd May, 2012

Listen to the MP3Stream here or read on…

5. We are paid up fans of A.A Gill – do read on…

Why? Because let’s face it when is the last time you read a piece of travel journalism that a) was half-way interesting and b) didn’t have at the bottom ‘Angela flew to the Bali Hotel and Spa courtesy of Air New Zealand and the Bali Tourism federation yadda ruddy yadda.

But A.A. Gill is another animal altogether – A severe dyslexic genius all his work is dictated  down the phone to magazines around the world (Tatler, Australian Gourmet Traveler and The Times of London.)

His description of the Isle of Man caused a diplomatic row: “hopeless, inbred mouth-breathers known as Bennies” and “retired, small arms dealers and accountants who deal in rainforest futures”.

Italy: Italy has made itself into a looking-glass world, where none of the normal worldly rules apply. Take scooters. Only in Italy does a scooter look sexy and chic. And organised crime – everywhere else crime is a reason not to go, in Sicily, the mafia is the attraction.

London can see the dead, and hugs them close. If New York is a wise guy, Paris a coquette, Rome a gigolo and Berlin a wicked uncle, then London is an old lady who mutters and has the second sight. She is slightly deaf, and doesn’t suffer fools gladly. A.A Gill

Now the Olympics has come and dragged us all into the bright light, and a lot of attention is being given to London, and we’re not used to it. We’re not good at showing off. We’re not a good time to be had by all, we’re not an easy date. London isn’t a party animal by nature, it doesn’t join in or have a favorite karaoke song. It does, though, have a wicked, dry and often cruel sense of humor. It is clever, literate and dramatic. It is private and taciturn, a bit of a bore, and surprisingly sentimental. And it doesn’t make friends quickly, is awkward around visitors. We will be pleased when all the fuss and nosiness has gone away.

So come, by all means, but don’t expect the kindness of strangers unless you decide to stay, in which case you’ll be very welcome indeed. There’s always room for one more on top, which is what they used to say on the buses when the buses had conductors, which they don’t anymore. And that’s another bloody improvement. A.A Gill

Oh and his take on Gastro-pubs: food and pubs go together like frogs and lawnmowers.”
Starbucks: “Asking Americans to make coffee is like asking them to  draw a map of the world.”

Finally on himself: ‘When I joined the Sunday Times the people I was competing with were all 10 or 15 years younger, they all had double firsts from Oxford or Cambridge, they were all bright as new pins. But I’d spent that 15 years wetting myself and getting into fights and living a sort of subterranean life but it meant I had had 15 years more experience – which was incredibly useful, and meant that I just wrote better than they did.

Guardian Profile:

4. Two words; Thigh and Master…

Let us for a moment ponder the career of Suzanne Sommers. Why? We have no idea….but work with us:

Part 1.  Three’s Company… plays the ditzy blonde…
Part 2. 1991 = Thigh Master – sells truckloads and revolutionises and industry 10 million pieces of junk plastic sold thank you very much.
Part 3. Home Shopping Network… was worried it was going to affect her acting career…but did it anyway…gangbusters people!
Part 4. The Butt-master – simply explained the thigh master plastic thing bend backwards
Part 5. Diet Books … (late 90’s) and a Poetry Book Touch Me: The Poems of Suzanne Sommers   e.g. ” Organic girl dropped by last night For nothing in particular Except to tell me again how beautiful and serene she feels On uncooked vegetables and wheat germ fortified by bean sprout…etc etc etc.
Part 6: The Sexy Years – a book on hormone injections – currently she injects a plant-based form of estrogen directly into her vagina each day…as its going to help her live to 110.
Part 7: Curing Cancer… without chemo, radiation or even surgery – and how she cured her own full body cancer.
Part 8: 2012 its Nanobots…her latest book promises to reveal the fountain of youth and its’ all to do with nanobots or small robots the size of blood cells injected into the blood stream to clean blood supply and wipe out today’s feared diseases.

Catch up on the career of Suzanne Sommers

3. Five ideas to bring us back to the movie houses…

These five ideas are not ours but we like them…(Fact; on average on 15% of a theatre’s total capacity is used)

No it doesn’t include 3D… but from Vulture of New York Magazine some ideas are:

1. More and better rewards for the INFREQUENT theatre goers… avid film goers provide 60% of income but this is at saturation – real growth is in the reluctant theatre goer.  They’ve done the it for airlines – frequent theatre going points anyone?

2. Cheaper Tickets (hello Village-yuck-Cinemas on Queen St) – The older the movie…cheaper the ticket. Allow pre-purchase of tickets for ends runs of movies

3. Multiplexes programmed by us… Get enough signed up for Austin Powers 1 – and you have a movie on at St Lukes – or especially popular for fruity 50’s stuff we think.
There is an outfit call TUGG doing this in the US right now.

4. Sell me stuff in my seat…right now – score to the Hunger Game, and action figure etc. Or if I provide my facebook details i get something free.

5. Baby-sitting: Starting to experiment with ‘in-theatre child care’.

Source: The Vulture (New York Magazine)

2. The USA Concert Ticket Rip-off…
or ‘we the paying public are actually just mugs’…

Our recent US$95 ticket to Bruce Springsteen cost US$230. (NZ$300) and here’s why:   The US concert ticket system is out of control.

The reality for 90% of music concerts in the US – is that you’ll go online and they are always sold out – BUT – on a second market site you’ll be able to buy a ticket to your gig for 300% above the face value…

Here’s a couple of reasons:
The Bots: automated computing programmes that online purchase 2 tix at at time via thousands of instant transactions.  Theses guys make half a million on Springsteen and loose $200, 000 on Carrie Underwood…but they buy everything!
Ticketmaster and Ebay – own a couple of the biggest secondary sellers – some say (on very good authority) that Ticketmaster will put 50% of its allocation to say Bruce straight on to their secondary ticket selling site and INFLATED prices. Springsteen seats were going for US$1000.   In short – The gamekeepers are the poachers.

Springsteen Ticket Sales Site:

and Finally a brilliant 14 minutes British documentary on the issue:

1. The Heartless Bastards (thanks to the Black Keys)…

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