Monthly Archives: October 2008

Justin Bond at the Soho Theatre- 9 October 2008

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Justin BondI love performance. I live for performance. Paradoxically, I am very sceptical of it. Alas, there comes a time in every sceptic’s life when an event, such as a man in drag teetering fabulously before me in 4 ½ inch stilettos and announcing the coming of the ‘second Depression’, when expectations are rather pleasantly surpassed.
Justin Bond’s ability to orchestrate a performance in a way that keeps his audience laughing and shaking their heads in disbelief at the same time (Did he just say that?!) is no doubt a factor in his climb to international recognition. I have seen this done masterfully two years ago in Kiki & Herb, the Tony Award nominated duo act which brought him fame as the alcoholic, retired showgirl alter-ego, Kiki duRane, and I saw it again last night in the opening night of Lustre: A Midwinter Trans-Fest at the Soho Theatre.
Fluctuating seamlessly between well-rehearsed songs (renditions of Bambi Lake, Radiohead and Lucille Bogan) accompanied by Our Lady J on piano, and spontaneous monologue about Joan Didion’s wedding dress and saving Anne Frank with a pair of ruby slippers, Lustre is a tribute to all things in between, halfway between black and white, male and female, ‘that gray area where everything is possible’.
The impulsiveness and politically spiked humour are a comforting breath of fresh air in times when too much of what we see, hear and read in the media is prescribed to an apathetic audience. In Lustre, everything is laced with Bond’s light, giddy satire, and each night, with special guest appearances, is bound to be unexpectedly different from the next.

Stalkers and Scamsters

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They’re a funny lot. I would love to get into the mind of the phone stalker who showed up unnanounced at my dear lover’s house party pretending to be the neighbour’s brother, asked for his phone number, and proceeded to bombard him with mysterious, unexplained missed calls.

I have recently found myself intrigued by the Gumtree scamster I have come across on four occasions these past two weeks whilst looking for a house. This mysterious someone, who goes by the names of Sarah Sabrina, Valerie Keane and Sabrina Wolfer (each with their own Yahoo email address), advertises too-good-to-be-true properties in central London, then asks prospective tenants to wire deposit money to themselves via Western Union and send her/him the receipt. The nerve!

Having come across and corresponded with him/her four times now, I feel weirdly close to this bizarre person. I’ve noticed patterns in his/her language, and the way he/she writes his/her ads to sound different each time. I even started to notice how he/she tries to look authentic. I have to say I’m actually fascinated. Who is this loser who spends all day sitting at the computer, making up fake identities and fake e-mail accounts? What drives them to do this instead of getting a real job? Here is an email I recived the third time round. This person actually created a persona to make his/her story more convincing!

Good to read from you again.

A lil about me : Am a 25years old fashion designer, very friendly and adventurous, I only Drink occasionaly but don’t smoke, I am quiet, easy going, fun to be with and open minded.I like to keep the house clean and tidy and would require the same too from any tenant.I am a christian by religion,my hobbies are Hiking, singing, watching soccer and going to the cinema’s.

About the house : The house was once a family house till my old parents acquired a new property in Spain and moved, so i have been left in charge of this house. It is a 3 bedroom flat like i already told you, and nobody occupies the flat at the moment.

I live in Birmingham and only come around once in a while so as to keep the house and surroundings clean. Reasons why we want to rent this place out is so that there will be a permanent occupant that will take care of the house furnitures and keep the surroundings clean in my absence. We just need life in the flat.

At the moment we are looking to rent out just 2 of the rooms while the 3rd will be locked permanently, for my use whenever i come around.
Concerning viewing: I can only travel from Birmingham to attend to serious tenants that are ready to move in and can prove that they can pay for the first rent and deposit, i don’t do general viewing. I need to know that you are serious and have the money to pay before i can come down to London.

I have a tight working schedule caused by my upcoming fashion show week, which preparations are on for at the moment with my co-ordinators from New York. You can search the map for that area and what you see in the pictures are what the interior of the house looks like.

If you feel comfortable with that let me know, if not don’t bother to reply so that we won’t waste eachothers time.

Thanks and warm regards,
Valerie

Oh I sympathise with you greatly, you poor, overworked… fashion designer! Here, have my money.

Creep!!! Learn some English.

In previous emails she told me she lives far away from the property and can’t be arsed to come down and show people without seeing the deposit. As if!