Funny Robert Stuff

Started by Tristan Berlin, May 03, 2006, 14:42:09

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When they were just kids... "Pink Floyd of the 80`s"? "Shit"! Do I detect a slight slice of arrogance in the voice of the young Mr Smith and isn´t Mr Gallup a bit tipsy?
again and again and again and again and again and...


Quote from: fiction on April 19, 2009, 22:29:41
When they were just kids... "Pink Floyd of the 80`s"? "Shit"! Do I detect a slight slice of arrogance in the voice of the young Mr Smith and isn´t Mr Gallup a bit tipsy?

thanks that video is amzing. he looks seriously frustrated: f*** pink floyd!!! :-D

and i LIKE pink floyd
Say hello on a day like today
Say it every time you move
The way that you look at me now
Makes me wish i was you


Quote from: fiction on April 19, 2009, 22:29:41
When they were just kids... "Pink Floyd of the 80`s"? "Shit"! Do I detect a slight slice of arrogance in the voice of the young Mr Smith and isn´t Mr Gallup a bit tipsy?

:smth023 That's a nice one, they are really just kids  :D, but are they changed a lot ? I don't think so  :-D
Vanilla smile and a gorgeous strawberry kiss x


Nearly 14 years later, many of the links are dead, but this one very much amused us:

The following are also good:

...which was taken off this longer segment:

A clip about the Galore videos (for those who enjoy the Pope videos, which I don't, so this is pure altruism / good archiving):

And from a YT sidebar, something else that didn't interest me very much at all:

This is again mostly about the visual presentation of the band, and that's one of the things that really put me off them when we were all living in the 80s - not their personal appearances, that's fine, but the way they chose to present themselves in video clips, especially when Tim Pope came onto the scene.

To clarify:  I'm not generally a fan of video clips anyway and I have always been more interested in music than in the circus around it.  I do enjoy watching live footage of bands who are excellent live, and that includes The Cure - especially performing in recent decades.  But video clips, I generally think are a waste of my time, and I enjoy <0.1% of them if someone sits me down to watch an episode of Rage etc.  I've just got zero interest in musicians cavorting around for cameras, saying "look at me" and trying to create images for themselves.  That whole business really began in earnest in the 80s, with MTV etc, and represents an aspect of the 80s I've loathed from the time I lived through it.

To give some examples of the few video clips I've actually enjoyed:  Tom Petty's Don't Come Around Here No More was cleverly done and actually told a story; ditto Thomas Dolby's Hyperactive and She Blinded Me With Science.  Those I will occasionally seek out and watch for fun.  But The Cure's videos from around the 80s I just found infantile and "look at me jump, look at me dance, look at me in the wardrobe, look at me in dress-ups"  - me, me, me, and you get the impression that perhaps the people who thought this was a good idea were "invisible children" when they were growing up and had a need to make up for the deficiency when they got into adulthood and acquired an audience (and this does happen).   Brett says, "Playschool, and not even sophisticated Playschool and insulting the intelligence of an intelligent viewer - a bit like some of the modern episodes of Dr Who like the one with the farting aliens."

One of the few things about The Cure with which I've agreed with Richard Kingsmill (Triple J) is that Robert Smith tended to complain about being typecast, but he really made his own bed there with the way he chose to present himself, whether as extreme doom-and-gloom or in this infantile, self-caricaturing, frothy "pop" manner.  The fact that these videos were popular I think is significantly due to the age brackets and personality types who are particularly interested in watching MTV, and as a direct result (of that, plus doing sugarcandy pop in the first place), The Cure started getting truckloads of screaming, fainting teenage girls in their audience who swore never to marry anyone except Robert Smith.  And that is a really unhealthy aspect of contemporary music I've never enjoyed, and I don't look kindly on moves that are done to encourage this, even if unwittingly done.

End of sermon.  It's a good thing they've stopped doing this, because that's a pet hate for me.  In some ways, middle age forces that to stop because then it's no longer considered sexy except as a minority fetish thing, and anyway, by that time both band and much of the audience are post-reproductive-frenzy biologically, and perhaps a bit wiser for the road they've travelled.

PS:  I thought the Boys Don't Cry clip was OK - that worked on a number of levels, and the red eyes added some punch.

More off the YT sidebars...

Interview from 1987. Very naughty bit of audience positioning here, with the teddy bear in the frame:

...and some interesting interviews (not necessarily funny but, for instance, in the first one, the note in the kitchen saying to put stuff in the dishwater thanks, typical whenever people are sharing food prep areas at work that you have to kick someone up the backside who thinks it's other people's job to clean up after them...)

Something out of left field next which warrants a bit of commentary - a radio segment from 1992 in which Robert Smith and Simon Gallup guest on some sort of agony aunt/sex advice show.  The very first person to call in is basically a stalker.  I'm drawing attention to this because right now in Australia there's this public reckoning of men's bad behaviour towards women and with cultural/systemic issues around sexual harassment, rape and sexual violence - a reckoning we've been badly needing to have for decades.  But at the same time, I think we should also call out the crap when the shoe is on the other foot, and it's incredibly rude to be ringing up a show to tell a person you're obsessed with them and could you please have a backstage pass (and a whole other bunch of shiitake this woman spouts before they rightly cut her call) - if you've got a problem like that you need to consult a psychiatrist, not rub it in the face of the person who you're obsessing over.  There's an example of sexual harassment going the other way - perpetrated by a female - and it's important to remember that this can also happen with domestic violence, emotional abuse etc - it's not always just men who are offensive in these ways.

After we listened to this, Brett was pretending to be a consultant psychiatrist subsequently seen by this woman: "I will show you photos of faces, including Robert Smith's.  When you see his face I will administer an electric shock.  Because I am that kind of psychiatrist - the kind that enjoys administering electric shocks - there will be lots of photos of Robert Smith."  :angel

Interesting show to guest on - and one where you're going to need brain bleach for some of the stuff being discussed - for instance, the local name of the thing Simon Gallup was actually describing is "soggy biscuit" and it's basically competitive male masturbation which punishes the individual who is last to orgasm, by making him eat everyone else's ejaculate - whoever came up with this, and what kinds of idiots line up for it is beyond me (and it included a group of male classmates on our Year 10 end-of-year camp, much to the embarrassment of the teacher who walked in on them), and it's certainly not the kind of training that's going to do them any favours when and if they actually get to have a relationship with a real person.

There's some funny and interesting stuff about obsessions and habits though - I've never thought about which shoe if any I put on first, and now I'm going to be paying attention.

One very annoying thing is that one of the official hosts (the non-OCD one) is a total posterior orifice - he's constantly talking over people, rephrasing things in crude terms, and making really inappropriate remarks that make it pretty difficult for the young people calling in especially to participate in a comfortable manner.  It seemed to me that whenever a caller was taking the right tone with the two Cure members present - not harassing, not fawning, just polite and straight and trying to get to the point - he tried to unbalance them by making unnecessarily sexualised remarks, asking them whether they thought their two famous guests were sexually attractive, even whether they were aroused - some people may think this is hilarious, but for an adult in a power position (radio host) to be asking teenage schoolgirls these questions is completely inappropriate; and it's neither appropriate nor tasteful with adult women either - it's exactly the same kind of shiitake that's going on in Parliament House in Australia.  The longer I listened to this programme, the more I wanted to strangle him.  (Brett says, "They don't pick commercial radio talk-show hosts for their intelligence or manners; they're often just unfiltered motormouths.")

Postscript in the next post...

Something else quite interesting from around that time - and it's nice to see some other band members being interviewed on this one, about half an hour in:

Fairly recent interview with an interesting discussion on the idea of hierarchy and the systemic injustice of how people's work is rewarded:

Recent one about concerts - again, not necessarily funny, but interesting.  Very amusing though to hear that Simon Gallup likes to play the pop songs and Robert Smith pushes for the darker stuff - because that's kind of the reverse to their visual images - on the 80s pop videos, Robert Smith looks the part and a bit too convincingly into it, while playing live Simon Gallup is all over the stage getting low to the ground with these highly tattooed arms and we've actually seen him wearing Iron Maiden T-shirts, and out of those two he's the one we imagine might enjoy a bit of recreational headbanging. :P 

...the other really amusing thing is the German interviewer - like a lot of Germans he's got this really kooky accent which stands in diametrical contrast to his surprisingly good command of the English language.  :lol:

...and now this post is too big to conveniently edit, so I'll have to do a Part 2 later...
SueC is time travelling


Oh, I remember seeing some footage from the Q.E.2 back in '92! Brings back some memories...
From me and you, there're worlds to part with aching looks and breaking hearts



I'm an educator and was really interested in how the radio segment from the personal-advice show in the last post panned out from a health-and-relationships-education perspective.  I've now listened carefully to the whole thing.

My opinion of this show is that Mssrs Smith & Gallup were significantly better than the official hosts of the show at dispensing useful advice on sex, relationships and a number of other matters.  Obviously a no-brainer comparing it to Mr Motormouth-cum-Crass (see last post), but also, surprisingly, compared to the MD present, who was supposed to be a professional at this and a voice of reason.  He's not all bad, but does rather remind me of the joke, "What do you call a final-year medical student who gets 51% in their concluding exams?  ... Dr."  Amongst other things, he rather over-egged the pudding about the danger of dating bisexual men - I know this was the 90s, but even then:  1) heterosexual sex was also transmitting HIV, albeit at a lower rate, and 2) risk reduction was available in the form of condoms (not that I'd personally want to play Russian Roulette with even one bullet in the chamber, which is what risk-reduced, via condoms, sex is like statistically in the long term).

Simon Gallup came across as very practical and thoughtful, employing a thing educators call Socratic questioning to get people thinking, and giving them a lot of space for reflection.  Robert Smith was especially good at picking up on irrationalities, inconsistencies etc and calling those out - and unlike the show hosts, was often correctly pointing out that there really wasn't enough information to go on...the show hosts (who also on a number of occasions appeared more employed with what they would say next than listening carefully to their callers and therefore often really obviously didn't get the points made) seemed happy to leap to conclusions based on very little information; indeed to keep leaping all over the place in different directions like startled lemmings as other bits of information were added, rather than gathering the available information in the first place and asking clarifying questions before running through various possible scenarios, like both Mr Smith and Mr Gallup consistently did.  Also it was good to see the carefully chosen language and calm, unruffled tone both of them were mostly using; again in stark contrast to the show hosts - carefully chosen language and a calm, unruffled, emotionally-neutral-but-friendly tone is exactly what's needed for these kinds of discussions, and for many effective learning situations.

The drug debate towards the end was also interesting, and it was the first time I've heard Robert Smith somewhat ruffled in an interview, which made me laugh - his voice goes up towards the squeaky end just like my husband's does when I scandalise him.  :lol:  But even though Mr Smith doesn't have a B.Sc. and his debating partner did, see the comment above - the MD was making statements more based on emotion and vagueries than actual research, for this topic.  I'm a relatively unbiased observer on this - I've not experimented with recreational drugs and so don't need to justify my own experiences (or for that matter, the lack of them :winking_tongue) - but I've got a four-year science degree with lots of physiology and biochemistry, have spent 20 years of my life in science research and education, and am an incessant self-educator - and therefore had a fair few thoughts on the arguments both of them were putting forward.

Here's some of them.  On "natural versus industrially synthesised chemicals":  While it's true that molecular replicas of plant-synthesised chemicals can often be made in the laboratory, and that identical molecules have identical biological actions regardless of how they were made, there's often differences in the chirality, or the intrinsic ratios of chirality, of organic compounds in a plant versus synthesised in a test tube.  You can read for yourself the effects this has on things like pharmacological action.  Additionally, if you're using a plant extract in its natural state, you're getting a cocktail of things rather than just the thing that's been deemed the "pharmacologically active ingredient" - and this has ramifications, which aren't necessarily negative for the natural source.  Furthermore, if you're buying street drugs that have been synthesised in a laboratory, they are often cut with other substances noone is telling you about, which may increase the harm of that drug.  Etc etc etc.

The one point I'd make to Robert Smith, though (and to a whole bunch of hippies, actually), is that "natural" isn't always a good thing.  Here's a few things that naturally occur in various plants:  Sodium fluoroacetate ("1080" - used to poison feral animals in Australia, because the native animals have developed a tolerance to it by co-evolution), curare, strychnine, etc - and a few things that occur naturally in the wider biosphere:  Snake venom, arsenic, radon, uranium, intestinal parasites, pathogens, etc etc etc.  Having said that, he was probably aware of that, but the constraints of impromptu discussion yadda yadda.

If I was going to make another point, I'd talk about cognitive bias - which both Mr Smith and his opponent were at times rather obviously displaying, but that's on par for the course, since all of us have it at least to some extent (and especially the people who think they don't have any at all).  Here's a handy list of common types of cognitive bias.

Plant and fungal biochemistry (fungi aren't plants, in case you grew up with two-kingdom classification and don't know that) is a fascinating thing - we're just about to delve into Entangled Life here, and have read lots of books like this, in my case including "heavy" academic material.  A lot of secondary plant/fungal compounds are grazing deterrents; likewise, there's a lot of chemical warfare in the animal kingdom, especially amongst insects.  Some of the plant secondary compounds have conferred an evolutionary advantage on the species that make them by appealing so much to humans that they've spread them all around the world and nurture them carefully as crops (coffee, tea, cocoa, tobacco, coca, opium poppies, cannabis, etc).

A common sight in Tasmania- fields of opium poppies

I generally agree with Robert Smith that if you're going to ingest a recreational drug, you're better off going to the direct plant/fungal source than a laboratory-synthesised compound - for the reasons already stated above, but also because, as he mentions, the context in which you do something like that is really important to the outcome psychologically.  (Plus, naturally sourced products often have a lower environmental footprint and a greater economic egalitarianism than human-manufactured products.)

Good on him for taking up the cudgels in this debate - I'd be unsurprised if he self-educates extensively around his areas of interest.  A good self-education can be superior to a formal education (because of 51-percenters, and because lack of passion for a subject, in-the-box conventional thinking, strong cognitive bias etc aren't automatic disqualifiers for getting a formal piece of paper).  My husband formally studied graphic design and programming, but I have better science conversations with him than I've had with any of my qualified science colleagues, because he self-educates and does so in a far broader manner than trained specialists who often end up in silos.

Take-away point:  It's really important to be forever carefully examining what you see and hear from others, no matter how much more "qualified" they are than you in a particular area.  (Just to complicate matters, this is what conspiracy theorists think they're doing, but aren't doing... either their educational base isn't broad and/or deep enough to do it, or their cognitive biases completely blind them...)
SueC is time travelling


Construction notice:  Post 168 is now finished - it's too hard to add to it because of its size, so I will continue resurrecting "undead" links from the old bits of this thread, and various YT sidebar clips, in a "Part 2" as I go through this stuff.  Watch this space.

People joining in would be great and of course you're welcome to disagree with what I've said about various things as I've gone along here.
SueC is time travelling