Discussing A Fantastic Woman

A discussion group at the Broadway to celebrate the Oscar win of “A Fantastic Woman” and discuss trans issues raised by the movie and in Nottingham now.
Hearing stuff I was unaware of.
One remark struck me in particular – (something like) – ‘I don’t know whether I want to start taking hormones, and then have surgery; I just know I’m happier when I’m trans.”
Other references to people in Nottingham being trolled, and stories of violence against trans people (particularly in Brazil).


I, Tonya

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Mainly unpleasant people, in an extraordinary story,  yet most striking is the domestic violence, and dysfunctional family life – almost melted away in the moment when Tonya first approaches a trainer at the age of 3 on the ice to be coached.
The movie
essentially says Tonya Harding was wronged throughout her young life and career, and at the end re-emphasises how Tonya was a skating great, but does not take much opportunity to show that Nancy Kerrigan was a victim.
But it is a very good movie. Go see.

Written from the viewpoint of many “I”s, the themes are much richer than “the incident” that made Tonya Harding notorious.  A “red neck” – notice how we don’t talk about “chavs” any more – whose athleticism broke barriers in figure ice skating, but struggled more on the artistic / grace side of the sport (contended by the movie to be in part class and social prejudice).
Some of the other “I”s decide to send the same death threats Tonya has received to rival Nancy Kerrigan / break her knee with a baton.
In negating Tonya’s responsibility, you can almost miss Tonya’s condemnation of Nancy being unhappy with only winning silver, when no doubt an interruption to the preparation for the Olympics could indeed have cost her the gold.

Dark River

A Rose Tremain story; about the daughter and son of a tenant sheep farmer and who wrestle to run the farm, now that the farmer’s dead.
It’s about more than that of course, but the sadness for me (whose Dad’s Dad was a shepherd and whose Mum’s Dad was a part-time farm manager) was that the story veers away from the optimism of turning a farm around to the despondency of a manslaughter.
Studying long distance shots of (North Yorkshire), learning some basics about livestock markets & shepherding, of the wildlife sustained by meadows, and cute scenes with sheep & dogs (& barn owls) is entertaining.
Critics have been less than generous. Perhaps the audience for this is too narrow.  And it’s way better than ITV’s Emmerdale.


Boris has no recollection

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“I have no recollection, Senator. That is the phrase you will have to learn.” – a Deputy Direcor of the CIA, from Clear and Present Danger.
How does a former London Mayor, in an age of electronic data and social media accountabilty, decide to declare that he cannot remember the rationale for backing a public project that wasted £40 million?


City Centre snow scenes

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Looking forward to March 2018

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Bridge ward monthly report 77

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Main focus has been making representations over development planned in the ward, most particular the Broadmarsh bus station & car park and the new college buildings for Narrowmarsh.  Made a special effort to stress the importance of bus services.

Area 8 committee rehearsed the sheer scale of developments now looking to come to Bridge ward, the section 156 works being considered for parks (reflected in an overall parks development statement), and heard the proposal for RINGGO to manage the car parks at Bridgeway shopping centre.   A further step change in managing parking in The Meadows is still planned for July, and aspects of this were rehearsed bat the Meadows Muslim Centre AGM.

New officers elected at the NeMTRA AGM, which was also addressed by Lilian Greenwood MP.

New NCH houses and bungalows were made available, although the ward walk saw quite a bit of tidying up still to do.

New building along Arkwright Walk is on-going, if late, and piling at Blackstone Walk is about to begin.

Nice to see the Watson Fothergill offices repaired.

Tragedy in the USA with a white supremacist killing teenagers in another mass shooting, made worse by clichéd prayers and glib remarks of the ability to kill with a pencil.   Perhaps the new youth protest movement can be the difference.

The Olympics lifted the spirit a bit.      Light Night entertained and new projects from local groups included Nottingham City Centre WI at Barker’s Gate and The Meadows Art Gallery celebrating Queen Victoria; The Council House was lit in purple to celebrate Rotary International’s fundraising to eliminate polio.

The season for the best movies of course (The Shape of Water, Lady Bird, Call Me by Your Name, Phantom Thread), but theatre was at the fore this month for the Lace Market Theatre’s “Flare Path” and Nottingham Playhouse’s “Wonderland”.