an archive of all the titlebars from the feeling listless weblog

What? A scene from the film adaptation of the comic book 'Ghost World'
Why? It's a staggeringly good film. Released with some largese the same day as Harry Potter, this was a film which captures the feels of a generation in the same way 'American Grafitti' did on release, a kind-of teen film which actually went some way to capturing the real experience within what at first appears to be a very artificial environment. Thora Birch is turning into a very good actress indeed ...
first appeared 6th January 2002; finally

What? Zen Buddhists celebrating the coming New Year
first appeared 30th December 2001; finally

What? Christmas Tree Worms
Why? Aren't they the strangest, most extra-ordinary things you've ever seen? I suppose I wanted to bring some magic into Christmas -- and I didn't post over the festive period so I was trying to cover all the bases in one picture.
first appeared 22nd December 2001; finally

Who? Frodo Baggins as he appeared in the Ralph Bakshi 1978 animated interpretation of 'Lord of the Rings'
Why? It was the week 'Fellowship of the Ring' received its worldwide opening. Wanted to remind everyone this was the second time we'd been there. Although Iove the new film, it's a shame Peter Jackson hasn't acknowledged the influence the earlier picture had on the work. There are shot in there which appear to have been lifted from the cartoon, particularly the moment when the hobbits hide under the roots of the tree to hide from the orc.
first appeared 15th December 2001; finally

What? 'Think and Link' on World Aids Day 2001.
Why? I've always tried to keep myself within the blogging community, even if I make a point of not linking to things I've found elsewhere much. This seemed like a good cause, although when the day came I wimped out with this post:
"Aids I've been thinking all week about what I was going to write today and eventually realised that I don't have anything to say. I know other webloggers will have stories of friends and familly who've been effected by the disease. Some will offer statistics. But I find myself, for once, speechless. So I think all I can offer is that it's in my thoughts as it should be in yours. I'd be wearing a ribbon with pride if I could find one anywhere ... which sort of proves that Aids has drifted off the agenda lately ... link and think ..."
I've been lucky in that no one close has been struck down by this thing so had no personal perspective to offer. On reflection this wasn't the best logo in the world (just modifying someone elses) but it could have been a lot worse.
first appeared 1st December 2001; finally

Who? Joe DiMaggio, Baseball player
Why? Imagine being the pitcher whose heart melts as he looks into these eyes and realises he hasn't clue were the ball is going to go.... and it would have been his birthday ... noice the very small title ... eyes this intense should never be covered up ... I did consider leaving it off altogether, but I didn't want to confuse people to much.
first appeared November 2001; finally

Who? Rachel Green (as played by Jennifer Aniston). From 'Friends'.
Why? Of all the characters in ‘Friends’ Rachel has been the most consistent and in terms of development, the show’s greatest achievement. From the dumbing down of Joey to the blanding out of Pheobe, many crimes have been committed but Rachel has been a triumph, as we’ve seen he develop from being a pretty little rich girl, through dizzy waitress to strong career woman, with sacrifices (Ross) and gains (a baby), and in the centre Jennifer Anniston’s performance. As my friend Anna says: “she has a subtlety about her. she's a true sort-of comic. you know, a class clown, someone who takes the fall. she's the straight guy who's straightness is what's so funny. she does well when she's doing this.”
first appeared November 2001; finally

Who? Tom Baker's Doctor Who being menaced by some Daleks. Scary.
Why? I never hid behind the sofa. I couldn’t – it was against the wall. But I still didn’t cower being any kind of lounge furniture. ‘Doctor Who’ never scared me. I always saw through its inherent fakeness, unable to suspend my disbelief. I had seen ‘Blade Runner’ (that frightened me so much I puked) and the realism on display there had killed my capacity for seeing the TARDIS as anything but a few round bits of plastic stuck on some hardboard. But I was born in the early Seventies. I only caught the tail end of Tom’s last season. I was being enthralled by Peter Davison, then Colin Baker. I missed the golden age. I missed seeing ‘Genesis of the Daleks’, ‘City of Death’ and ‘The Horns of Nimon’ the first time around. I never saw Tom Baker in his prime, as he appears in this photo, vital and surprising, alien yet familiar. Yet another of life’s tragedies I suppose.
Happily I have been here for the resurgence: since the appearance on ‘Have I Got News For You’ he’s been managing to find steady work outside the convention circuit -- something we should all be grateful for. I know he’ll never be The Doctor again, but could someone please give him a detective series exploring unusual happenings? The old bluffer is still in there, you know …
first appeared November 2001; finally

Who? Androgynous looking Roman statue of indeterminate origin.
Why? Every year, for five years, I’ve been attended night school classes at the local university, in a bid to keep the educational part of my student years alive. A few years ago, I left my choice of courses to the very last minute, a week after most had already begun, exactly. Looking through the booklet I found one series about ‘King Lear’. I hate ‘King Lear’ – or rather I hate the fact I can’t understand it. Once the old duffer gets onto the moor, the rain comes in and my mind clouds. I decided I’d get this sorted out once and for all. Sadly, after sitting in the class room where it should have been held fro half an hour I found out it wasn’t running. In a panic, I dashed for the next available class, a history of ‘Popular Music’. Two things made me leave this at the interval; the scary middle-age woman who kept winking at me as she took an Elvis pencil, from an Elvis pencil case to write in an Elvis exercise book; and the lecturer who took to placing his hands on my shoulders and spent his time talking about rationing and not playing any bloody records.
So there I was in the break looking at a course board looking for something at least a bit interesting that didn’t seem to require any prior knowledge. Within a few moments, from nowhere I still think, a beautiful young woman, the sort I’d always seen in foreign films, stood next to me. I asked which course she was doing. She pointed at the board:
“Art, Beauty and Philosophy.” Her accent was French.
“Any good?”
And I followed her into the class, for nine weeks of Socrates, Aristotle and Freud. Hence the statue. This was one of the most significant moments of my life. Did I end up dating her?. No, got to know her a little bit, but she was very high maintenance judging by the business trips she would disappear on with her boyfriend. Did I fall for anyone else on the course? That’s a long story, but ultimately no, although the experience added someone important to my life. The reason that this moment still makes me shake, was that for once I said something, in the pregnant pause when in the past I would have just smiled nervously and gone home, I asked the right question, and did the thing I would have been kicking myself for not doing the rest of my life. I made up for all the times this has happened which I still wince over. Like the time a similar French girl asked me up to her room on the first night of college and I declined … but that’s another story.
first appeared November 2001; finally

Who? Withnail (without I) as played by Richard E. Grant, during the famous tea room scene ... 'I want the finest wines known to man, I want them here, and I want them now!'
Why? In his autobiography, ‘With Nails’, Richard E. Grant describes how the rest of career has been coloured by this part, how many of his greatest roles have been because his fellow actors wanted to work with Withnail. The measure of the actor is that he doesn’t feel constrained by this – unlike some who’s future work has been defined by a single role, he thanks the world for the opportunities it has given him; the chance during the nineties to work with a string of iconic directors (Altman, Coppola). Since then he has been no less visible in career terms, but has been appearing in seemingly lower key productions, a clever move, which has allowed him to play the roles he would simply never see on the big screen. In a film of ‘The Scarlet Pimpernel’ he would have been a pompous courtier not the masqueraded hero; knock his appearance (and performance) in ‘SpiceWorld’, but he was there in a moment of pop culture history, ‘A Hard Days Night’ now; in ‘Trial and Retribution III’ he gave a classically dramatic performance, by turns sinister and touching; in ‘The Curse of the Fatal Death’ as another instant Doctor Who we glimpsed how Withnail might have been in the TARDIS, now that Marwood had already been there. Chin, chin.
first appeared November 2001; finally

Who? Death, as featured in the Ingmar Bergman film, 'The Seventh Seal'
Why? When I was at university, I was almost an anti-student. During my year in halls, whenever everyone else was out having fun, getting drunk, getting each other, I would spend my time at home catching up with study or reading or music or in a Friday night, the free videos available at the college library. And since my campus had the main language faculty, this consisted of foreign film from throughout the century. If I’ve any knowledge of world cinema it’s from this time. Kieslowski’s ‘Decalogue’, Fellini’s ‘La Dolce Vita’ and Bergman’s ‘The Seventh Seal’. I had seen the references – 'Bill and Ted', 'The Last Action Hero', 'Love and Death' – but seeing the source, the moment on the beach in which knight looks Death in the eye as he moves the chess pieces sticks in the mind. This was fantasy without swash buckle, heroism in words not swords, humanity not scared of the future river or where it flows. In too many ways, I never saw films the same again – and began to go out more, to see what I was missing.
first appeared 28th October 2001; finally

Who? Jewel, the singer-songwriter.
Why? More than any of them, Jewel breaths an intimacy that suggests that in all the world, she’s singing to you. Just you. Like some private concert in a basement bar, the only other audience a bored waitress leaning on the bar reading a newspaper. I try to buy one album a week, and listen to it to death during my train journey back and forth from work. I listened to Jewel’s new album ‘This Way’ for two solid weeks – after a rough day of people shouting down the telephone at me, it felt like somewhere I could cradle away, hide from the ugly noise of the world. I only stopped the ritual when the tracks began to become to familiar – so that when I hear it again, tonight, then, it would seem as new.
first appeared October 2001; finally

Who? Richard Nixon, ex-president of the United States.
Why? I had just seen the teen/consipracy film 'Dick' with Kirsten Dunst and Michelle Williams. It's a spin on 'All The President's Men' in which two young girls are the Deep Throat supplying information to Woodward and Bernstein. It's a slow burning film, combining the subtle with the broad with a fantastic final shot almost worth the admission fee/rental charge. Also this photo seems to encapsulate Nixon's entire run in the White House in one image -- 'Why can I never get anything right?'
first appeared October 2001; finally

What? This is one of Sir Lawrence Alma Tadema's (1836-1912) more chaste works.
Why? I was casting about for something subtle for my title bar, and decided this evoked what I was trying to do with the weblog -- which was a bit high minded because I stray closer to pop culture than anything else. I was going to make this the permanent bar, but I think it stayed for all of three days. So here it is permamently. Notice the blogtitle in the top left hand corner. Just looks wrong.
first appeared October 2001; finally