The Front

h ' hf MARTIN WYKES, company director of BFZ (Boredom Free Zone), gets all excited about

entertainment merchandise.

1 John Lennon Imagine limited edition gold disc. This has been BFZ's top selling product since we opened. Aside from the fact that it would look fantastic in anyone's living room, you also get a piece of John Lennon’s own front door included in the price.

2 Betty Boop polka dot handbag Betty Boop always has been and always will be fashionable. there's just something about her - ladies. if you don't have one of these go and get one NOW!

3 Lord Of The Rings pewter chess set This is a real collector's item for any Lord of the Rings fan. It looks amazing and is also pretty rare.

4 Bo Selects Cha’mone 1-8hirt ‘Cause we love celabrities.

5 Star Wars ‘Darth Vader’ Light Sabre Re-enact your favourite film while fighting with your girlfriend careful she doesn't strike you with her Betty BOOp handbag though.

Be king of your own castle as you log on to the National Trust for Scotland‘s Connoisseurs Collection of holiday accommodation ripened and ready to fulfil your dream weekend. Check out the four luxurious properties on offer in Aberdeenshire. the Borders and Ayrshire. Our top tip: Harmony Hall, a fine Georgian pile set within Harmony Garden in the heart of Melrose. The early 19th century house has gorgeous period plasterwork. Definitely worth a click of the mouse.

n BBC World Music Awards Edinburgh Mon 8 March

Benjamin Presenter When Kadim Al Sahir was on

tears. That's why I said inUSIC cuts thr0ugh the bullshit.

6 THE LIST 18 Mar—1 Apr 2004

stage. many of the audience and not JUSi IraQIs were in


A breath off" N .. ~ fresh airbrush-


Brian McGeachan is a smoker and he knows he’s an idiot. But is he any more stupid than the draconian new US anti-smoking laws?

moking kills. So says the advert on individual

packets. and for once the facts live up to the

billing. It does slowly but surely deliver death to its customers. Smoking is therefore almost by definition stupid. 1 make this plea of mitigation on my own behalf because I am a smoker and I am stupid. But I am also many other things. And one of them is perplexed by the anti-smoking lobby's hijacking of the efforts of the so-called ‘politically correct'. If political correctness consigns abusive terms like ‘nigger‘. or ‘paki' to the status of social taboos. then it is unquestionably a force for good. If it can prevent a young gay male like myself from being described as a ‘shirt-lifter.’ ‘arse- bandit‘ or. in the name of Ali G‘s comic irony. a ‘batty hoy‘. then such correctness is long overdue.

But there‘s a tendency to undermine the very principles which our concern not to offend , seeks to promote. Nowhere is this more evident than in the draconian anti-smoking laws of the United States of America. One might imagine that in a democracy like the US. there are more pressing concerns than the right of individuals to abuse their own bodies. It is a nation. after all. which enshrines in its constitution the right to bear arms.

Last year I resided in New York a cosmopolitan melting pot where the smug hypocrisy of ‘middle America‘ is not in evidence. Yet moves are afoot there not only to ban smoking in private clubs. but in streets.



It was very. or soft. when was on stage. The audience was unlleievable. and l was happy. It's the first time I'm a Winner and I'm very proud; for me and for Uzbekistan.


parks and even parked cars. (One wonders what amorous couples in rocking cars will be charged with: screwing in a semi-public place or having a post-coital cigarette?) The signs were there for us all to see when cigarettes were airbrushed from the US Postal Service stamps depicting artist Jackson Pollock and blues guitarist Robert Johnston: also from the statue of Roosevelt as the symbol of Hyde Park. New York.

Such revisionism is now making its way over to this country. In January the Beatles~ classic Abbey Road album cover depicting the band on a zebra crossing had been altered to remove the cigarette in Paul McCartney‘s hand. The original 1969 image has been a poster best- seller. beloved of nostalgia buffs since it was shot in north London. But companies. most notably the US giant Allposters. demanded that the cigarette be airbrushed from popular culture‘s history just like that.

Should there be censorship of the cigarette? I think not. As a smoker I will. if in your company. desist from lighting up if so requested. In your home. I will certainly accept the inevitable banishment to the tenement hack close. There. I might be joined by a dwindling gang of compatriots. wreathed in cigarette smoke. We will stand not quite shoulder to shoulder but strong and unbowed. bathing in the incense of a despised religion. To be victimised for a weakness which has but one victim is tantamount to bullying. There is a point at which even the pursuit of health can become unhealthy.

Tomas, Dana


The audience was so hearty? After we finished on stage I went into the audience. and I enjoyed Sevara Nazarkhan. She was fragile and she did if.

Arts Coord "ate" The flow was strange. n‘o\.:ng front Senegalese hit) l‘ot) To mellor. U/hek ballads Bat best of all Edinburgh test like a European city tonight.