didn't even have to use my a.k.

pretty weird day today, but good all the same. as i've already been on about, a crew from Peacock Alley TV, in Canada, came to Birmingham to interview me for the second series of their Cheating Death programme - we managed to wrangle Bacchus bar, in town, as the interview location, which was amazing. it's this wonderful underground place that used to be some sort of wine cellar as far as i can tell, all painted up with mock Renaissance frescoes on the stairway down, ceiling murals of the night sky, replica Ancient Egyptian art and heiroglyphs in one section, pretty oil paintings in another. there's a suit of armour, there's a whole modelled Garden of Eden scene on a ledge near the ceiling as you come in (complete with snake slithering part-way over the edge), there's Grecian stone columns and carved wooden furniture and mock candle lighting and velvet curtains. it's amazingly over the top, & easily my favourite place to eat and/or drink in Birmingham. it was a bit last minute, but i was chuffed when i got the email saying we were going to be doing it there. i got up super early and managed to fake a decent complexion, attempt to control my hair and do some reasonably attractive paint (i also put glitter on my cheeks because fuck it.)

the actual interview was great - the host, Tim Caulfield, was genial & ridiculously easy to talk to, especially since it turns out he shares my preference for evidence-based healthcare and dislike of / disbelief in woo of any kind. great bloke. i'm looking forward to seeing him interact with Kevin Warwick when the episode gets out, although i have no idea when that is. we talked for about 45mins & managed to cover a lot of ground, mostly top-level stuff about biohacking in general - the philosophy of transhumanism, how biohacking fits into the greater h+ sphere, about the biohacking community and what the term means and what sort of things in general we do. he also asked a fair bit about me personally, what got me started, my own philosophical convictions & how those informed my experiments, what implants i have and what they do, all that sort of thing. the crew was absolutely lovely from start to finish too - they were so helpful in telling me what exactly they needed, bringing water and coffee, and tolerated a lot of dumb questions from yours truly about their extremely impressive camera equipment (they let me clap the clapperboard!) they even bought us lunch in the bar, so everyone ate there & then went back to my flat to film "b roll" for extra visuals that the audience will see over some of my talking.

i went a bit mental cleaning up the flat the night before, so thankfully it was crazily tidy and clean when they got there, and the crew managed to get the various bits of film from various angles they needed (stuff like me showing how an RFID reader plugged in to my laptop can detect the RFID chips in my hand, me typing nonsense and trying to look serious, showing them bandages and needles and whatnot, and also for some reason making tea.) the crew grappled their big heavy cases of equipment around the tiny little rooms pretty impressively, clipping cloths to the curtains and carefully angling furniture and standing on chairs and using my makeup mirror to get a cool shot where the camera was using the mirror to film me typing nonsense. they were all just really nice people, everyone was friendly and accommodating and they even tipped us. it was actually kind of fun and definitely a lot less stressful than i imagined it was going to be (although a big part of that was due to Paul, who is not only experienced with all the film-related stuff but also ridiculously, amazingly supportive.)

slight aside/apology: yes, Paul & i are together romantically, as a lot of you knew anyhow. sorry for having to hide that and leave questions about it unanswered, & i'm sorry if it got confusing over the last two years. we've been having to hide it whilst he was doing his Master's course because we were worried they wouldn't let him do the documentary as his dissertation otherwise; the course's ethics panel were already wavering over whether he could or not because of the self-surgery maybe encouraging other people to do the same, and the footage of it maybe being traumatic for people, and the grey legal area biohacking occupies, and it being against the rules for Paul to be "encouraging" someone he's filming to hurt themselves (and their kind of nebulous ideas of what exactly "harm" and "encouragement" mean) that we figured if we also threw in a big fat loss of objectivity for them, they'd nix it. so i had to scrub some blog posts of their ~endearments~ etc and try to stay out of his personal space when we were on campus, and Paul had to pretend to be an eligible bachelor (lul) / only ever talk about me in a professional, journalistic way (i am purely in this for the interesting documentary matter! we have in no way fallen in love! i have definitely not got any carnal knowledge of this person) etc etc but the thing being submitted now and with little chance of anyone from his faculty reading my blog anymore*, normal lovey-dovey service shall now recommence.

my love to those you love



Dan Campbell said...

"Yes, Paul & i are together romantically, as a lot of you knew anyhow."

We know that, yes. But it's great to hear, anyway. When you don't bring it up for a while, it almost seems like something happened.

"we were worried they wouldn't let him do the documentary as his dissertation otherwise"

That makes perfect sense.

Regarding the 'dangerous precedent' that they might fear, it helps that you were able to get to a professional, during your most recent experiments. If those are in the film also, then maybe that would ease any anxiety on their part.

As far as Paul 'influencing' your experiments, you can always tell them that you're the crazy one, not Paul. We can all vouch for dat :).

Great to hear about your experience with the crew. Looking forward to seeing it on air.

L & R,


Anonymous said...

Hi Lepht, do not underestimate how many / who are reading your blog. I am reading it since your talk in Berlin on the CCC. I am always glad to see new posts and I come here 6-8 times a year, mainly to see "ok, nothing new, bye", but always happy if new stuff is there. Hope all will be well and SLC will be satisfiable or leaves you alone :-)
Looking forward for the documentary / interviews.
All the best from Germany, L42

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