Avatar A little help

Back in November, I sent Ian his belated birthday present. Film yourself opening it, Kev and I said, so we can see the joy and wonder on your face as you open the tat you’ve been sent. Ian said he would do this.

It’s now been nearly three weeks since Ian told us he’d made the video but hadn’t yet got it onto YouTube. We are still waiting with baited breath to see him open his present. Kev, of course, hasn’t seen the present yet and doesn’t know what it is. I have seen the present, because it was me that bought and wrapped it, but so much time has elapsed since the video was promised that I’ve honestly forgotten what it was.

As a genuine YouTuber, I have decided to do what I can to help, and have dedicated my latest video to explaining how to get a video onto YouTube and then put it into a post on the Beans. Everything then got a bit meta because I uploaded the video, showing you how to upload a video to YouTube and post it to the Beans, to YouTube, and then after that I posted it to the Beans. Anyway… here it is.

Avatar Another lost classic

You know what I’m like. Always losing things, and then finding them 14 or more years later.

First it was Big Day Out. Then my long-lost footstool turned up on eBay. (Have I told you about the footstool? Remind me and I’ll take you through it all in exhausting detail later.) Now something else has arrived.

Back in 2002, Al had just got a camera and we excitedly made a series of five admittedly mediocre films with the title “AlCam”. The most ambitious, and possibly least terrible, was AlCam 4, where our theme was “culture” and we attempted to cover art, fine dining, foreign travel and music, among other things.

The finished movie was transferred to Super 8 tape on the camcorder, and then all the files were deleted because they took up lots of space and in 2002 disk space was expensive. Then Al, er, misplaced the tape. I had big plans to put all the AlCam movies on DVD, and in 2003 I did just that. In order to get the movie into a digital format, I gave Al my copy of the film, which was on VHS. Al then also lost that.

The result was that AlCam 1, 2, 3 and 5 have all safely been stored on DVD ever since. AlCam 4 was never seen again.

Until, that is, Al started going through old tapes when he had a clear-out over Christmas, and sent me this picture from the little screen on his old camcorder.

In it, we see a youthful Al and Chris introducing AlCam4, complete with branded t-shirts, in front of a very hi-tech bluescreen background. It’s been found. And when I get the time, I’m going to put it on DVD. Not because anyone wants to watch it – I don’t particularly want to watch it. But because it’s been an unfinished project for 20 years and finishing things is important. Especially to me. I’ve had an empty DVD box on my shelf for two decades and I’m damned if I’m not going to take this opportunity to finish the job.

To answer Kev’s next question in advance… no, Al still hasn’t found “An Evening with Kev and Chris”, now missing in action since 2003. Sorry.

Avatar A moment from history

“Oh dear, English hearts are broken the world over. Mrs Goggins has missed her penalty meaning that England are knocked out by Germany. They will not make it past the semi-finals and Germany will go on to play the Czech Republic at Wembley Stadium.

Goggins looks gutted, a world on her shoulder and nothing to show for it. Our thoughts are with her at this most trying of times. There was nothing more she could do. I expect everyone in Greendale felt that.”

Avatar Kevin Hill – Mega fan

Following the recent bombshell that our beloved Kev was a secret Lionel Ritchie fan, it prompted me to check if this was correct or more cranks from the rumour mill. That mill has a lot to answer for; it’s where all that speculation about me and the Duchess of Cornwall came from. You come off the London Eye together, rubbing your mouth and pulling up yours trousers and all of a sudden you’re having an affair, completely ridiculous.

I expect he thought he would get away with it but knowing there were cameras about he couldn’t quite help himself so, guard well and truly dropped, out come his pearly whites and cheeky grin. I’ll see if you can spot him in the crowd. It took me a few attempts to find him.

I don’t know why you didn’t tell us sooner, Kev, there’s nothing to be ashamed about secretly jiving to ‘All Night Long’ in the garage when the kids have gone to bed. In fact I’m a little gutted you didn’t invite me along. It’s questionable behaviour but not the reasons you think. Questionable friend behaviour.

I bet you had backstage passes too, didn’t you? I bet you and Lionel were sat drinking tea and talking about ferns for a couple of hours like two drinking buddies. What’s your problem? Worried we might get on better with him, huh? That I might say something silly like, “where do you keep your pasta, Ly-Ly?” then throw a woolly hat over the balcony?

You make me sick sometimes you really do.

Avatar Badvert

I don’t know if you’re familiar with Toffifee. It’s a sort of over-packaged nutty caramel confection that a distant relative might buy a grandparent for Christmas, or that might be the only product you recognise if you visit a German supermarket.

In a move common to all European confectionary when it’s advertised in the UK, Toffifee released a new TV advert a couple of months ago that has somehow made it on to the airwaves without anyone involved realising that it looks at least 30 years out of date. Presumably nobody involved in the entire campaign had any sense of irony.

This post isn’t really about anything other than my need to share with you just how naff the whole thing is.

Read More: Badvert »

Avatar Nostalgia – Young Me (and him)

Look at you. How old are you? You’re very old. You have done lots of things in your life and more often than not someone will have been there to make a note of it or possibly take a photo.

Nostalgia is what sells lots of old crap in that you remember how it was “back in the day” and then you want to get that feeling back by, I don’t know, buying your first car again, playing that Atari you had up in your uncle’s loft or investing in Microsoft shares. When I was looking for a photo for my brother I found a few photo albums, most of which were filled with sentimental (i.e. pointless) photos of my bedroom when I was 9 and other guff. I did, however, stumble upon several re-discovered gems of what used to happen when Kev and I, and sometimes Tom, would get whammed.

Now don’t get your hopes up, dear people. If you’re looking for sordid, filthy accounts of unscrupulous behaviour then you’re really on the wrong website (you took a wrong turn at boobpedia.com). What I’m talking are polaroids (easy now) of us all looking young surrounded by drinks bottles and cans. If you ever wanted to know what Kevin looked like with a bog roll on his head, holding one of those plastic separators you get with cans of lager, then you’ve come to the right place. If you were “desperate” to see a photo of me fake passed out on the floor then go no further.

I don’t remember ever looking that young but I know it happened. Here’s the proof:

Avatar James Earl Jones is Amazing

Do you know who’s amazing? I’ll give you a hint, it’s not you or I. Nor I. No, neither of us is amazing. You can show me all your achievements, medals, awards and dissertations but you will never be as amazing as James Earl Jones.

This will be difficult for some of us to understand (i.e. Chris) due to the fact that some of us cannot watch films for fear of exploding. That said, James Earl Jones, or JEJ as he is known to his closest friends and family, has also has a stuperbulous career on both television and on stage, so you’ve got no excuses some people. He is a huge talent and has played everyone from a man covered in black plastic to a huge lion and even read all 27 books of the New Testament in ‘James Earl Jones Reads the Bible’. I know now what everyone is getting for Christmas…

I have a ton of respect for James because he’s always been there in lots of things, lots of things I have enjoyed which is a rarity these days. I almost fell off the sofa though when I paused a film he was in and this came up:

Immature, juvenile, yes yet also immensely satisfying and hugely enjoyable. I think James Earl Jones looks even cooler with walrus tusks. Walrus tusks or sticks of chalk coming out of his nose. He can pull off any look, he’s that good an actor.