Things I would like to see less of this year:
The NME and their monthly touting of some bunch of talentless goddamned hippies as the "next big thing". This is a self fulfilling prophecy based on the influence of that particular rag rather than any kind of ability on the part of the bands they are touting and the sooner people see how culturally f*cking insignifant the NME is, the better. This also goes for Kerrang to a lesser extent but my ire towards them is based on their failure to mock the bejezus out of Fightstar.
The Pussycat Dolls. God... where to start? unattractive strippers criticising the girlfriends of the world while singing forgettable pablum? That'll do.
Big Brother. Anyone who appears on any incarnation of that show does so in full knowledge of, and deserving of, the abuse and destruction it will cause to their personal and professional life. Whatever your race, religon, colour or sexuality the producers will add a contestant who hates all those things, for bonus points they will manage to have a circle of jerks including the black homophobe, the white supremacist jew and the white gay nazi.
That being said, I have less of a problem with the headlines detailing Jade Goody's swift decline
Pete Doherty. He cannot sing. You can tell me to watch specific performances but he still can't f*cking sing. I have *watched* several performances - for my sins, and he still can't f*cking sing. I've seen him on Jools Holland and he couldn't f*cking sing, he couldn't f*cking dance neither so unless I missed the memo where we were informed that he was some kind of performance artist can we please drop the pretense that his detractors simply don't "get it"?. He can barely f*cking talk, he's like Shane McGowan if Shane McGowan couldn't f*cking sing and lost his looks, wit, charm and ability to hold a witty conversation, yes, I *am* talking about that Shane McGowan. I predict he finally dies this year, he's never going to be clean because he is an attention seeking junkie whore and the drugs get him the attention he craves. If this happens then maybe we can return the definition of "Genius" from "Thieving cokehead who rubs crack in his eyes every morning" to "Someone with an ounce of talent".
Jokes about the bird flu. Look, it was funny in Scrubs when Dr Cox made the crack about bird flu being one of those diseases that you'd have to have sex with the creature in order to catch. It is less funny when you recite or paraphrase that joke in your loudest voice (making sure *everyone* hears how original and witty you are) in a comic store where
a) Everyone present has already heard the damned joke
b) There were kids - don't make bestiality jokes in front of kids.
Not only are you a moron for that but you're a moron for not realising that this is not what the panic is about, it is about the idea that the disease could mutate into a version that did NOT require you to be balls-deep in a pigeon to catch. A version that turns birds into wide ranging flying packets of disease that are near impossible to catch, cull or contain. This is why the scientists - who are smarter than you Mr Secondhand Joke - are concerned about the possibility.
You're a Star - Having succeeded in its goal to ensure that Ireland never again wins the eurovision song contest they seem to have abandoned any pretense at cultural significance. The judges speak volumes - Brendan O'Connor, a man whose connection to the music industry is tenuous at best and whose role seems to be to be as physically and personally repugnant as possible - a veritable charicature of Simon Cowell except lacking the charisma or history of managing successful pop acts. Linda Martin, who was the winner of a eurovision song contest - thus granting her some degree of legitimacy and has some clue about talent and finally the one and only member of the panel who has any business being there - Thomas Black, a record executive attached to Sony and EMI. Unfortunately since they're not even aiming for someone who can guarantee a loss at the eurovision any more it isn't even about originality or talent (or lack therof) so much as marketability and pliability and presumably how quickly they can foist the poor sods off onto Louis Walsh so he can manage them into the ground and get them a gig modelling lingere on the cover of some lads mag - their cold, dead, joyless eyes staring out from the covers as if to say "I abandoned my degree course in medicine for this..."
Fine Gael electioneering. So far this morning I have read about their efforts to slam the government for its failure to do something about the aforementioned unstoppable packets of feathered disease and their proposals to introduce random, mandatory urine testing for schoolkids as a means of offering students an excuse not to take drugs (the theory is that they'll be able to resist peer pressure by saying "I might get tested"). Please, please stop. Every time one of you speaks you push more votes back to Fianna Fail.
Also, Lucinda Creighton.. creichton.. however you spell it, kindly respond to my query as to whether or not you were going to make us all feel safer walking home at night by prowling the rooftops dressed as batman.