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Freddie Mercury’s 1974 Silver Shadow Rolls Royce has been put up for sale
01.03.2013
10:50 am
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Freddie Mercury’s 1974 Silver Shadow Rolls Royce has been put up for sale with auctioneers Coys (founded 1919). The prospectus states:

Estimate: £9,000 - £11,000
Registration Number: WLX293M
Chassis Number: SRH18696

Freddie Mercury is of course best known as the lead vocalist and lyricist of the rock band “Queen” , and one of the most flamboyant performers in rock history. As a performer, he was legendary for his flamboyant stage persona and powerful vocals over a four-octave range. As a songwriter, Mercury composed many hits for Queen, including the legendary “Bohemian Rhapsody”, “Killer Queen”, “Somebody to Love”, “Don’t Stop Me Now”, “Crazy Little Thing Called Love” and “We Are the Champions”.

In addition to his work with Queen, he had a massively successful solo career, and also occasionally served as a producer and guest musician (piano or vocals) for other artists.

Mercury was noted for his live performances, which were often delivered to stadium audiences around the world. He displayed a highly theatrical style that often evoked a great deal of participation from the crowd. A writer for The Spectator described him as “a performer out to tease, shock and ultimately charm his audience with various extravagant versions of himself”.....

More details here.

I can understand why one might want to buy Freddie Mercury’s piano, but his Rolls-Royce less so. One for the completist, I s’ppose.
 
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Full details and more pix of Freddie’s Rolls, after the jump…
 

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Posted by Paul Gallagher
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01.03.2013
10:50 am
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‘Staying Fit with Jim’: Enigmatic cable access fitness guru with a ‘little body’
12.31.2012
11:06 am
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Last night during the fourth (or was it the fifth?) session of the (incredible) two day Everything Is Festival at the (awesome) Cinefamily establishment here in Los Angeles, they had a “Found Footage Battle Royale.”

Now what that means is that the entrants had to submit 2 minute clips and then they’d face off against each other with the audience “applause-o-meter” deciding the winner of each round, who’d then move on to the next. The winner was a fellow named Uneven Eagle who presented clip after clip of an enigmatic Wausau, Wisconsin cable access fitness instructor named “Jim.”

Once “Jim” was unleashed, no one else stood a chance.

There is next to nothing about this cinch-waisted fitness guru on the Internet, just a brief listing on the local cable access station’s website. The show is aired there, amidst Lutheran and Baptist televangelists, the teachings of “Eckanar” (with Living ECK Master, Sri Harold Klemp) and The LaRouche Connection. Even in that company, Jim must stand out, as you can see from the following clips.

For over 20 years, “Jim” has hit record and videotaped himself brandishing a scimitar, his monological musings on having a “little body,” “fat farm boy hands” and the price of magazines, pork chops and apples, as well as his thoughts on the films of Arnold Schwarzenegger. Because “Jim” edits his show “in camera” (i.e. starts and stops the camera between scenes) he has to hold still for several seconds after each set up to avoid the camera preroll erasing the previous scene. So he just stares into the camera. The winner of the contest had a final clip of these moments all cut together. Maybe it was the free beer, but the entire audience was shrieking in hysterics. The clips below are pretty much arranged in the order that the audience saw them in.
 

 

 
Above: “We can pretend we’re Hercules and we’re crushing…something. Something evil.”

More “Staying Fit With Jim” clips after the jump…

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Posted by Richard Metzger
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12.31.2012
11:06 am
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Anonymous threaten to ‘destroy’ Westboro Baptist Church over Sandy Hook protests
12.17.2012
08:58 am
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The much-hated haters of the Westboro Baptist Church, well-known for their “God Hates Fags” signs and picketing the funerals of dead soldiers, announced over the weekend that they were planning a demonstration at Sandy Hook Elementary School. Callously disregarding the residents of Newtown, Margie Phelps, a member of the Phelps clan tweeted that “fags” and gay marriage had brought the mayhem to the CT town. A freakish musical statement from the WBC purports that God had sent the shooter (personally, I guess).

Residents of Newtown don’t need this shit right now. Enter Anonymous.

In a video uploaded on Vimeo, the hacker collective throws down the gauntlet:

We will not allow you to corrupt the minds of America with your seeds of hatred. We will not allow you to inspire aggression to the social factions which you deem inferior. We will render you obsolete. We will destroy you. We are coming.

An awful lot of people would very much like to see that happen judging from the supportive comments (unsurprisingly, the WBC attracts few “care trolls” who stick up for them, or even for their First Amendment rights. Most people just loath them and want to see them hurt).
 

 
So far Anonymous has published the email addresses, phone numbers and street addresses of a number of Westboro members (And what do ya know, most of them are named “Phelps”!). A US government official predicted earlier this year that soon enough Anonymous would have the expertise to be able to bring down parts of the power grid.

Fuck the Phelps, sure, but just imagine if they took down Wall Street for the day.

Update: Either the infamous 15-year-old hacker “Cosmo the God”—or since he’s actually on probation, someone hijacking his handle has hacked the Twitter account of Shirley Phelps-Roper, daughter of the hate group’s founder, Rev. Fred Phelps.

Update #2: Nathan Phelps, son of Fred Phelps, but who has no part in their insane shenanigans, responded to his family’s announced actions:

“My heart goes out to the grieving families as well as the rest of the surrounding community during this time of unthinkable mourning & tremendous loss. The news that my sister & the rest of my family intend to protest the funerals of those lost in this national tragedy is, to me, a stark reminder that anyone’s interpretation of religious texts serve more as a reflection to the character of those reading it than whatever the author intended in the first place. My sincere hope is that the Sandy Hook community is able to grieve & mourn privately, & with whatever peace can be had in knowing the rest of the world mourns with you.

“To those considering offering WBC an alternative to protesting these funerals, I say, ‘let them show up’. WBC is running out of money & their leader is a frail old man whose power & reach is tremendously limited to those who provide them an audience. Their recent tactic has been accepting media air time in lieu of protesting high profile funerals. By allowing them this luxury, they get free publicity with no effort or expense on their part, while potentially traumatizing a much wider audience than those strong enough to stand against them in silent but effective counter-protest. These counter-protests have, many times, prevented the grieving mourners from being impacted by WBC’s childish, attention seeking behavior. Please do not allow WBC the option of a less costly alternative. By calling their bluff, they will either ask for police protection, which allows police to control where they are located, or not request police protection, which would clearly be an unwise decision considering the emotionally charged environment they will be entering. Either way they alone will bear their costs, along with sole responsibility for harassing the community, without the benefit of a national platform in which to do it.”

 

Posted by Richard Metzger
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12.17.2012
08:58 am
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Marc Bolan: T.Rex rule Don Kirshner’s ‘Rock Concert’, 1974
12.08.2012
08:10 pm
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Marc Bolan’s career was in decline by the time he appeared on Don Kirshner’s Rock Concert. His singles were failing to chart back in Britain, the original T.Rex line-up had split after the departure of Bill Legend, and Bolan was no longer working with his key producer Tony Visconti. There were also rumors of Bolan living an out-of-control, tax exile, lifestyle of cocaine and brandy, and his once svelte, androgynous frame, had ballooned into a debauched cherub.

The fans had changed too. A new generation had sworn allegiance to the tartan-trewed Bay City Rollers, rather than fantasies of Glam. This then was the background against which Bolan was first introduced to the American public on Don Kirshner’s Rock Concert, in 1974.

In a new line-up that included Bolan’s girlfriend Gloria Jones on keyboards and backing vocals, T.Rex kicked ass (even Bolan’s voice was occasionally flat) as they played “Jeepster”, “Zip Gun Boogie”, “Token of My Love” and “Get It On (Bang A Gong)” to an audience that seemed both literally stunned and amazed.
 

 

Posted by Paul Gallagher
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12.08.2012
08:10 pm
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Revisiting the unholy reign that was Windows 95
11.15.2012
09:41 am
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Windows 95
And we were subservient to its whims
 
I remember the dark times…

The times when the grimoire operating system, Windows 95, was the specter that haunted our technical world. And now, there is a Tumblr to remind us of that reign of terror, a Tumblr we can use to tell our children of the horrors of the long ago.

So let us clutch our Linux tightly. Let our Mac OS guide us through the forest of Internet porn and YouTube kitten videos. And let us be safe in the comfort that Windows 8 keeps us secure, like a benevolent, albeit loveless, marriage.

Revisit, if you dare!
 

Posted by Amber Frost
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11.15.2012
09:41 am
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Reason to Believe: Rod Stewart cries tears of joy when Celtic beat Barcelona, 2-1
11.08.2012
02:29 pm
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Real men do cry, as the legendary Rod Stewart proved last night, when he burst into tears after his beloved Celtic F.C. beat ‘the world’s best soccer team’ Barcelona, 2-1, at their stadium in Glasgow.

While some wags thought Mr. Stewart must have lost his wallet to elicit such a response, I can attest, as a fellow Celtic supporter, tears of joy were more than understandable after such a tense and exciting, Champions League game. Now, here’s to the next one.
 

 

Posted by Paul Gallagher
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11.08.2012
02:29 pm
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‘America died’: LOL tweets from conservative twit Victoria Jackson
11.07.2012
02:30 pm
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“Anti-intellectual political activist” Victoria Jackson reacts to the election on Twitter.
 

 

 

 

 
Via BuzzFeed

Posted by Tara McGinley
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11.07.2012
02:30 pm
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Dirk Bogarde: A Life of Letters
10.21.2012
04:45 pm
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By 1968, Dirk Bogarde thought his film career was drawing to a close, as his days as a matinee idol were long over, and the offers of work had slowed. With his partner Tony Forwood, he moved to France, and started a second career as a writer. Bogarde proved to be an exceptional writer, producing 15 bestsellers, including volumes of autobiography and fiction. He was also a dedicated correspondent, penning letters to his many friends and fans. Bogarde’s letters are filled with gossip and back-biting, sketches and scintillating tales of his life.

This first letter was written when Bogarde had finished work on Richard Attenborough’s A Bridge Too Far, with Sean Connery, Ryan O’Neil and Michael Caine, and was also re-dubbing his voice on Alain Resnais Providence.

Though Bogarde was a prolific writer, he could not spell (ahem…rather like Nigel Molesworth), and the following is presented as was written.

To Bee Gilbert, Clermont, 13 September, 1976

Dearest Sno’

What a lovely long letter to cheer me up on my return, three days ago, from a hellish week of looping in Paris. I got there to find that I had to loop the entire fucking film… 200 loops. The sound engineers were dreadful (from Telly natch) and the birds, dogs and airoplanes which scattered across the locations screwd us up even more. Well… it is done now. Am home again for a couple of weeks before returning to Old Father Attenboroughs Disney-Arnhem. Which I dread. Ah well. It will make a bomb, with all those Stars how can it fail? Adored Sean C and worked very happily indeed with him… and made a surprising new mate in Ryan O’Neil who could not be nicer, jollier and brighter! That WAS a surprise. Tote says it was because he was so bloody respectful to me all the time… but I just liked the bloke. And he’s good too. And THAT was a surprise. Gene Hackman was a bit Methody and got cross if the camera operator was on the set while he was rehearsing… but was very pleasant to me and quite good, not more, when it came to the Acting.

Mike Cain pulled the Movie Star bit a bit much… the big cigar, black glasses and fat Cadillac… but he was pleasant if dull and has to have the ugliest voice in the business… and pop eyes. And that was a surprise too. I dont think I could go through it again for anything. Even the lolly. A woman from The New York Times ruefully mumbled that doing something as crappy for so much loot left ‘a kind of stain.’ I wonder if she was right. Holland was hell. Apart from the van Goghs, Rembrants and the Vermeers it is all a lot of crappy horror… We stayed in a ‘dainty’ little hotel in a wood where dinner started at 6.30pm and was off at 8.45. THAT went down like a cup of cold sick as you may imagine. Especially as the prices were identicle to the Lancaster in Paris! However we had three weeks there and flew back on a beastly Caravelle, which bounced all the way to Nice…

We have had, unlike you, a soaking summer… everything green and lush… while the great trees in the Luxumbourg Gardens are all dead. And now Tote is out mowing acres of white daisies and autumn crocus and I think I’d better go and help him… regretfully. I am so lazy and full of reaction… odd.

God bless you, pretty Sno… all love as ever for ever… as you know.

Sno.

YoR

Dirk.

Bogarde did not have worry too much about his cinematic career, as the 1970s saw him working with Luchino Visconti on Death in Venice, Liliana Cavani on The NIght Porter, with Rainer Werner Fassbinder on Despair and Bertrand Tavernier’s Daddy Nostalgie.

In 1983, Bogarde’s partner Tony Forwood was diagnosed with Parkinson’s and cancer, which led the couple to leave France for England in 1987. Not long after their arrival Bogarde suffered a stroke, and the following year Forwood died. Bogarde was devastated, only his writing kept him from suicide. He maintained his various correspondences, including one to Penelope Mortimer, whom he had written to since 1971.

In this letter from 1991, Bogarde responds to Mortimer’s gentle cajoling, and gives a portrait of his life after Forwood’s death.

To Penelope Mortimer, Cadogan Gardens, 24 September, 1991

Bloody hell, you are difficult. I TOLD you that you would find my letter nausiating, people like you, those who see everything in dusk-tones, would. I AM a sort of Pollyanna… and after years of just keeping away from people on account of millions came to me to watch my cavorting, living a secluded life in my small-holding I suddenly got shoved into FULL LIFE with no protection and in a Foreign Land.

After a time of, shall we say reflection?, I decided that having had one stroke and not much liking the effects, I could very well have another, had to live in filthy UK… had to live in London… where better to be than where I started off at 16 as a Student at Chelsea Poly? Parents had been students there too. And the Slade. I felt ‘right’ in the area. Coming to terms was difficult. To terms with walking quite unprotected in streets jammed with curious people.

‘I think it is. Look!’
‘You ask him. Go on. He cant bite you?’
‘Were you Dirk Bogarde?’
‘Left France, have you?’
‘I remember your face but not the name? Humphry someone… ‘

I ducked into my anorak and tried to walk, as I told you, only at dusk or just when shops had opened. Fewer people. No standing with curious, autograph hunting, housewives in lines at the Check Outs. Sainsbury’s, Tesco, Waitrose were soon abandoned. People followed one.

‘He’s buying tinned tomatos.’
‘Thinner than I imagined.’
‘Smaller.’
‘And balding… see?’
‘Pity. But after 50, you know… ‘
‘Could you sign this? Not for me, for my neice, grandmother, wife, son, sister, baby-sitter, cousin Agnes, Eileen, with two e’s please, Anne with an “e”...’

No one, ever, in France behaved like this. Not even in Paris… unless they were British. I felt, all the time, as if my cock was hanging out of my pants: I hunched my shoulders, wore a Purdy cap, scuttled (as far as I could scuttle with a wonky leg) and my doctor thought that it might be ‘obesessional’. Might it? I’d never had an obsession before, save for lizards, frogs, birds, and those kinds of things. So I decided to either go mad or face up to it. I faced up to it. Took off the cap… walk INTO the Check out… smile at everyone because they SMILE at me! Memory jogs them… of some time in which I must have figured in their private lives somewhere… at any age from 10 to 70. My films are always on TV on Sunday. I am counted as a friend. OK. I’ll settle for that. It is far better than hiding in this flat wondering what to do, how to die gracefully.

RAGE. Yes. You make the error of thinking that RAGE has to be manifest, that one shouts and screams with what you call ‘fury’. Balls. RAGE is sometimes inside. Heard of a Rage To Live?

You react to one puny sentence in my letter about 50 years and body-bags on a too small stair-case. But RAGE did’nt remotely come NEAR the thing. Acceptance, humility, fear of ‘what now’, relief that three years of almost unendurable suspense, of desperate distress physically, of loss but relief that it was over. Knowing is so much better, I promise you, than wondering: and hope is pretty hollow when it leaves.

No sense of injustice. Helplessness, yes. To a point. But one is forced by distress and need to rally. No fury. At all. Why? It happens; we are born to die. When Anna, the Night Nurse, and I tried to turn the patient [Tony Forwood] he said, and I could only hear by putting my head against his chest and ‘took’ the vibrations, ‘If you did this to a dog they’d arrest you’. Right. He was being ‘jokey’. But he was right. Which is why I am now the Vice President of VES… and sticking my neck out against Catholics and British Manners and Members of the BMA. IN public. But no Rage. I had the most wonderous 50 years of my life. So did my partner. WE both knew that we’d have to pay. And did. OK?

I have come to terms with my life, I only have an active 10 years reasonably left. Christ! Why waste them? I have just written to Radio Drama. TV [sic] and refused, politely, their kind offer to write a play, or a series, for them. I have quoted the things I watched for homework. ‘Tittmuss’, House of Elliot, Trainer and some dire thing, they adored, which starred my (once) deeply respected Tom Courtney. Impossible to believe any of them. Lowest-Common-Watcher. I’d rather stay with my Telegraph Readers. At least they write back intelligently. I’m off to do a bit of Auschwitch again: then there is RAGE. Then, my love.
Will that do? Hope that you are not vexed that I shoved R. Fox the Handle? It’s only a nudge of course. But he’s bright, clever, and very sharp. Also his track record is amazing, and his wife is to die [for,] she is so adorable, tough, beautiful and can act! Wow!

Love

D.

Dirk Bogarde‘s letters are collected in the volume Ever, Dirk, edited by his biographer John Coldstream.
 
Previously on Dangerous Minds

Dirk Bogarde: Never screened on TV interview from 1975


Dirk Bogarde: Still Cool


 
HT to the Telegraph
 

Posted by Paul Gallagher
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10.21.2012
04:45 pm
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This Charming Man: A delightful interview with David Niven
10.18.2012
06:27 pm
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I always thought David Niven was Scottish, mainly because this great, charming actor regularly claimed he had been born in the town of Kirriemuir in 1909.

Kirriemuir is known as the birthplace of Peter Pan author, J. M. Barrie, and AC/DC frontman Bon Scott. It is also famed for Walter Burnett’s Kirriemuir gingerbread, which I recall eating in thick buttered slices as a child, thinking this tasty treat was the very stuff Niven must have lived off as a bairn.  Of course it wasn’t and Niven hadn’t been born in Scotland, rather he was a son of London, born in 1910.  Still, it only added to his tremendous style and charm, which made me find him so likable as an actor and raconteur.

That and the fact his films, in particular The Way Ahead, A Matter of Life and Death, The Elusive Pimpernel, Around the World in 80 Days, and Separate Tables were regularly screened on local TV during the sixties and seventies, possibly in the misguided belief Niven was Scottish.

Some of this great charm can be seen here in this brief interview with Sue Lawley, from 1973, where Niven discusses his childhood, pot, alcohol and good luck.
 

 
With thanks to Nellym.
 

Posted by Paul Gallagher
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10.18.2012
06:27 pm
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Charles Bronson’s sexy world of body odor
09.19.2012
03:20 pm
Topics:
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It’s likely some of you have already seen this. But even after being on YouTube for six years, I managed to miss it. I saw the 1970s Mandom commercial featuring Charles Bronson for the first time the other night at the Alamo Drafthouse in Austin. It was part of a reel of short subjects the theater screens in lieu of the kind of gag-inducing “real” ads shown in most movie theaters. Watching a vintage Japanese commercial in which Bronson slathers himself with deodorant while making sexy talk is lighyears better than one of those shitty Fandango ads.

The doorman is played by the wonderful character actor Percy Helton.
 

 
Enjoy the Mandom theme song (“Lovers Of The World”) by Jerry Wallace after the jump…

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Posted by Marc Campbell
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09.19.2012
03:20 pm
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