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Below are the 20 most recent journal entries recorded in Marcus' LiveJournal:

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    Thursday, July 23rd, 2009
    10:11 pm
    ex fiancees and engagement rings
    how would you persuade an ex fiancee to return an engagement ring? You need it back for financial reasons but she doesnt listen to your requests or make any attempt to understand the situation you are in.

    should you
    (i) seek to shame her publicly
    (ii) attempt reconciliation
    (iii) seek legal advice, and if needed go to the small claims court, as the ring was conditional, not a gift - you never said it was hers
    (iv) other
    Thursday, July 16th, 2009
    9:21 pm
    new user pic
    pgce appication failed, so journalism beckons.....
    Friday, July 3rd, 2009
    1:16 am
    reflections on question time
    well, i didnt get a question in or a comment but it was an interesting experience and i managed to bum a cigarette off david dimbleby outside afterwards and chat with him. There is a great camaraderie between smokers.

    Not a single question out of 7 on foreign affairs. My question had been 'As the Iranian govt suppresses all domestic opposition, shouldnt the international community consider tougher economic and political sanctions'. Apparently the questions are selected by popularity from the 200 strong audience. David Dimbleby told me only four or five had been on foreign affairs, people were more concerned with budget cuts and he rail costs, probably because of the recession. I said that was pretty parochial and a poor reflection on a place like cambridge. He smiled and said 'well, yes, i thought afghanistan might have come up, as well as iran but if the audience dont want to discuss it then there isnt much of a debate.

    The questions were about budget cuts, east coast mainline being nationalised, ronnie biggs, id cards, mot tests for teachers, michael jackson and a deleted question about swine flu from the recording.

    Thinking about it since coming home two uk soldiers, including a colonel were killed in afghanistan yesterday, one us soldier was kidnapped by the taliban and last night america launched a major offensive called operation sword strike, and we ended up talking about whether ronnie biggs should be released from prison. 171 uk troops have now been killed, 179 died in iraq, by the end of summer there will be more uk fatalities in the ongoing afghan war than in the closing iraq war. I find this shocking.

    David Dimbleby is a genial, nice guy.  With a couple of other audience members we chatted for about twenty minutes whilst his crew was clearing up to go into town for dinner. After talking about the questions, we then talked about the homeless in cambridge, he said he thought that might have come up after he bbc documentary 'rich, famous and homeless', and that cambridge had a big homeless problem, We then compared our smoking habits as i .  had run out of cigarettes and asked if  he had a spare oneHe said hesmokes one cigarette a day, after a programme, then qualified it with a wink and said 'and one before', then he gave me his packet of silk cut with four left in. I really like David Dimbleby.

    Sitting in the middle put me in camera shot a lot, im glad i wasnt looking too sweaty or untidy, it was so hot beforehand the air conditioning was a blessed relief.
    Tuesday, June 30th, 2009
    10:58 am
    question time in cambridge questions......
    ive just been invited to attend the bbc question time progrommane in cambridge's west road concert hall this thursday evening - july 2nd and they want me to submit two questions from this weeks news for consideration by tmw afternoon.

    what questions do people suggest? at the moment my thoughts are mainly about the situation in iran and rising unemployment in the uk, when will it hit 3 million and what can be done to help.

    however there are so many questions that could be asked, any suggessttions?

    Harriet Harman MP, Iain Duncan Smith MP, Jarvis Cocker and Allison Pearson are on the panel

    EDIT; panel is now harriet harman, iain duncan smith, javis cocer and David Laws (Lib Dem Spokesman on children,work and families) and mail on sunday wacky columnist, Peter Hitchens.
    Monday, June 22nd, 2009
    8:38 pm
    parliament loses its last vestige of respect
    amazing, john bercow, who flipped his second home and claimed the maximun second home allowances is now the speaker with a grace and favour residence, how else can parliament reform itself?

    not only that but he could be speaker for the next 20-25 years as he is so young.

    who had even heard of this guy before the expenses row? It was only when the telegraph exposed he had flipped his home to buy a 540,000 quid london apartment

    i actually am beginning to think the bnp are more honest than the mps at westminster

     taken from the daily telegraph my expenses file:

    John Bercow “flipped” his second home from his constituency to a £540,000 flat in London and claimed the maximum possible allowances for it. Bercow, a candidate for next Speaker, "repaid" £6,500 capital gains tax on the sale of two properties. His expenses files reveal he also twice charged the public purse for the cost of hiring a chartered accountant to complete his annual tax return

    i passionately care about politics but any idea of this former right winger, who has come out as a liberal not lining his own pocket beggers belief. If he wants to be, as he says an ambassador for mps then he really does deserve to have rotten eggs thrown at him

    parliament has become a fucking joke, it will be 'reformed' by those who have already become millionaires out of it
    Monday, May 25th, 2009
    2:41 pm
    european elections - this is hilarious

    i wanted to know what the christian party policies were, the best info i could get is in this link:
    needless to say they read a v different bible to me and i WILL NOT vote for them

    i read the policies with a mixture of horror and disbelief but couldnt help but crack up with laughter when i read they wanted to change the welsh flag because the red dragon is a symbol of satan

    Saturday, May 9th, 2009
    1:26 am
    i  just watched master and commander again with the subtitles on, its strange how this changes your attitude towards a film. i enjoyed it first time  but now, seeing the script i understand how powerful the underlying  theme of friendship between capt arbury and the doctor really is.

    It was very moving and inspiring. Why have i lost my courage to speak as i think? The doctor is great
    Sunday, April 19th, 2009
    11:42 pm
    a youtube video to watch
    i dont watch britain's got talent, i stumbled on this watching chris moyles quiz night when it came up as a question. Intrigued i tracked down a you tube clip - it was amazing, i was genuinely speechless watching it.

    Les Miserables is my favourite musical and 'i dreamed a dream' is an exceptionally difficult and powerful song to perform. This must be one of the most powerful and heart stopping performances ive heard. In the context of the musical its the song of a broken woman contemplating prostitution to alleviate her poverty, after selling everything she owns (including her teeth and her hair)

    check it out
    Tuesday, March 17th, 2009
    5:08 pm
    What's Your Personality Type?
    You Are An ENFP
    The Inspirer

    You love being around people, and you are deeply committed to your friends.
    You are also unconventional, irreverent, and unimpressed by authority.
    Incredibly perceptive, you can usually sense if someone has hidden motives.
    You use lots of colorful language and expressions. You're quite the storyteller!

    In love, you are quite the charmer. And you are definitely willing to risk your heart.
    You often don't follow through with your flirting or professed feelings. You break a lot of hearts.

    At work, you are driven but not a workaholic. You just always seem to enjoy what you do.
    You would make an excellent entrepreneur, politician, or journalist.

    How you see yourself: compassionate, unselfish, and understanding

    When other people don't get you, they see you as: gushy, emotional, and unfocused
    Saturday, February 28th, 2009
    10:04 pm
    how has history viewed margaret thatcher?

    There has bee a spate of tv documeteries and features about Margaret Thatcher in the past few days. I assume this interest by the media is because it is now thirty years since she became the first woman prime minister in 1979. Obv she went on to become the longest serving continous prime minister since the early 19th century.

    Margaret Thatcher is the first prime minister i remember, i was 8 when she came to power and in my second uni year at St. Andrews when she was toppled. As a teenager I absolutely hated her, i voted first for the SNP whilst I lived in Scotland, then turned to the Lib Dems when i moved south and have stayed with them since.

    Many of my LJ friends prob dont know my first degree was in history, as was my masters at york, it was later i moved to theology. I am startled by how kindly Thatcher has bee viewed by modern historians now and by her reputation improving dramatically in the polls and in the media. Will the same happen to Tony Blair in thirty years time? I suspect not as much but i think it will improve substantially. Didnt Blair once say 'history will be my judge' - i think history will, in spite of Iraq, be remarkably kind to him. Gordon Brown, my guess is, will, be viewed as another John Major.

    Why has this happened? Thatcher was a cold hearted bitch who didnt believe in community life, ran roughshod over the poorest in society, created a society of greed and yuppies. - did she have any other choice?  Hmmmm, discuss.........

    I guess there are 2 reasons why Thatcher has come out well
    (i) she was an incredibly gifted politician, she spent 11 years in office and whatever u think of her policies (and I disliked most of them) she got what she believed in. Very few of her predecessors managed this. You have to admire that, it certainly made her be viewed as a world statesmen/stateswoman.
    (ii) GB's confidence and world reputation was vastly better in 1990 than in 1979, in general she left Gb in a better place then what she inherited. HIstorians often use this a baraometer on so called great kings or leaders.

    Tony Blair certainly comes close on (i) and probably half way on (ii)

    Obv these are only two initial thoughts, what do other people think?

    PS .....i still dislike Thatcher but I now have some respect for her and am re-evaluing why i was so hostile in the 1980s

    Monday, January 12th, 2009
    2:34 am
    is israel so wrong to defend itself against hamas?
    before i went to israel and palestine in 2005 i always thought the palestinian community were being persecuted by israelis, something which seemed incongrous given the holocost etc. why did the israeli govt attack palestians so much?

    i was there during the sharon pull out of settlements from gaza and it seemed there was some hope, it was almost like northern ireland finally making the good friday agreement a reality. Then things went wrong. Ariel Sharon had a brain hammoreuge and Fatah was weakened in elections and then effectively removed in a coup by Hamas - im sure of this, Hamas had wide support but took over the palestinian authority by force.

    Hamas in its founding statement is committed to tthe very real destruction of israel, they are a militant, fundamentalist islamic group
    Certainly i believe israel acts in a heavy handed way but when so many of your neighbours want to literally wipe you off the face of the map to quote iran's president is it surprising?

    Hamas and the UN cite the deaths of children and refugees as war crimes, i think this covers up the war crimes uof Hamas

    this is an appalling situation but i think israel has some justification here, hamas is a terrorist group, not unlike the taliban, they use the sufferring of gaza civilians to advance their own PR, no wonder Israel thinks withdrawing settlements in gaza was a mistake. The Israeli aim was to give the Palestinian Authority in Gaza to create a home of their own in the Gaza strip, their response is to fire rockets into israel.
    Wednesday, November 26th, 2008
    11:44 pm
    quantum of solace-the worst bond film ever
    i went to see this last night at the arts picturehouse,with an expectation it would be good, after all casino royale was a faithful, well directed version of the novel by ian fleming. Qunatum of Solace is utter rubbish, badly directed, badly edited, a crap score, a nonsensical polt line, and predictable. I got bored half way through, if this is the middle part of a trilogy the god help eon films.

    if they stuck to the short story which appears in ian flemings anthology, 'for your eyes only, it would
    ]been interesting but even the name of the story makes no sense
    Monday, November 24th, 2008
    1:33 am
    if an idea is not absurd, then there is no hope for it - a.einstein
    i believe in god as einstein did, however, like einstein i dont understand god, he or she may be good,neutral or evil
    but god exists on the understanding that i cant see any answer otherwise,without god physics is meaningless, discuss...............
    Friday, November 21st, 2008
    3:07 am
     i want to die, im not kidding i really fucking do
    2:30 am
    what really was the point of the goth eucharist and what did it achieve?

    since i first wrote the goth eucharist on christmas day 2004 and piloted the service in january 2005 with the help of carolyn robson louise meats and an american guy i have lost touch with it has grown from a quiet first year to media celebrity throughout 2006 and indeed still continues, any google search will produce new hits on it from bloggers nwspapers, tv companies.. i had intended to write a book about the phenomena that i started but now im not sure it is not what i expected it to become.

    that is not a bad thing a healthy development in the life of the church should go its own way, it should change and adapt to new circumstances but i dont think it is very 'goth' any more its just another 'new agey' service with a more traditional christian overtone, it no longer has a cutting edge and i certainly dont think many goths go to it anymore. Still it has had a legacy i know goth eucharists now run in birmingham coventry, edinburgh, brghton and in both yale and seattle abroad, all taking cambridge as their origin. im glad they all use the liturgy i wrote and not the abused form currently in use which is more 'churchy' than imaginable.

    i went to the st. eds goth eucharist on nov 4th and received communion but felt so betrayed by the service i created i couldnt talk to anyone afterwards. it was a mockery of what i wrote it is now a conversion service just another way of getting new christians into the fold it was never meant to be this it was meant to help goths in particular and anyone else find peace and contemplation and reflection in their heart and mind to be a 'safe space'. it was this for a while now it is a bunch of christian do gooders who are trying to convert people or non goths trying to make friends with others.

    maybe this is not such a bad legacy for the goth eucharist it is surprising at any rate it has lasted for over four years nows and about to enter its fifth with a congregation of about twenty or so but i noticed goths rarely come anymore.

    i think the service has lost its raison d'etre and become just another 'fresh expression' of the church of england withput having anything special about it., might be wrong so i ask these questions......

    i, what do you think of the goth eucharist?
    ii how has it changed?
    iii, what is it trying to do?

    Wednesday, July 16th, 2008
    11:53 pm
    Top forty movies of all time you should see before you die
    Ok, im bored and being watching dull stuff on channel 5 tonight about their top forty disaster movies of all time tonight according to Channel 5 viewers and readers of the Times. So I thought I would make my own list of the top forty movies I would take to a desert island with me, on the basis of best director/best picture - disaster movies, after all are almost entirely B list.

    So i have based this list largely on the best directed film, which I take to understand as the most inspiring/imaginative/moving sum of its parts - be that acting, photography, music, special effecfts, script,, what i think is the directors job. The Best directer gives a thought provoking sense of vision you can spend ages debating with friends what message they were trying to convey.  Please post back with your own top forty or with comments.So my top forty is as follows:

    1,Return of the King
    2, The Two Towers
    3,Oscar and Lucinda
    4,Letters from Iwo Jima
    5,Cyrano De Bergerac
    6, Before Sunrise
    7, Amelie
    8,Lawrence of Arabia
    9, Star Wars 1
    10, Downfall
    11, Apocapylse Now Redux
    12, Pans Labyrinth
    13, United 93
    14, The Queen
    15, The Mission
    16, Twelve Angry Men
    17, A Bridge Too Far
    18, Michael Collins
    19, The Jungle Book
    20, Jean De Florette
    21, Betty Blue
    22, The Sound of Music
    23, JFK
    24, Moulin Rouge
    25, Henry V - Kenneth Brannagh, dr.
    26, The End of the Affair
    27, Dr Zhivago
    28, Evita
    29, The Charge of the Light Brigade
    30, The Unbearable Lightness of Being
    31, The Double Life of Veronique
    32, Chariots of Fire
    33, The Company of Wolves
    34, Three Colours Red
    35, Watership Down
    36, Black Hawk Down
    37, Shakespeare in Love
    38,The Elephant Man
    39,Close Encounters of the Third KInd
    40, Gigi

    What do other people think? What are your top forty films and why? I made my chice largely on best direction/thought provoking or ground breaking pieces of cinema......
    Wednesday, May 28th, 2008
    1:50 pm
    tonight - what are people up to?

    does anyone fancy meeting up for a coffee/drink this evening? Im on a day off and at a lose end and promise to be good company.

    Saturday, November 24th, 2007
    5:17 pm
    RIP Cinders
    Last Wednesday my 7 year old cat, Cinders was killbed by the cyclist on Barton Road.

    I watched her being born and loved her entirely. I am heartbroken.
    Monday, September 24th, 2007
    5:29 pm
    last night's tv
    did anyone watch stuart- a life backwards on bbc2 last night at 9pm?
     I wanted to watch it but was at work and the recording i set up fucked up. Im very keen to get a copy and to hear what other people thought of it. The story is of a previous resident, Stuart Shorter, from the hostel i currently work at in Cambridge.
    Friday, August 31st, 2007
    6:16 pm

    i got the job!!!!!!!!! Tonight is a very,very good night

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