Longroom Saturday, Dec 5 2009 

So tonight I went to longroom, a cafe/club/bar on Ponsonby Road (Formerly Safari Lounge) due to the fact my friend was having an engagement party that moved on from dinner to drinks. Now, at the moment, I’m a bit crippled. Was in a car accident a few months back and now hobble around on a crutch due to a broken femur (I’d have two, but my left arm is broken too – yeah, life sucks, eh) so I’m sure you’d understand that I haven’t been to a club in a while!

It was raining – hard – and the club was packed. All I could think about was either slipping over in front of a massive crowd of people, or getting taken out by a tipsy club-goer who didn’t have the coherency to be careful around me! But I bit my lip and went in – and although there were a lot of idiotic tipsy people that were quite close to taking me out, thanks to the great staff at longroom I was fine.

I was so impressed with their help. The club was packed and I’m sure they had much better things to do than to take care of me, but they walked me in with an umbrella, walked me through the crowd and creating space around me so that no one walked into me or hit me with their handbags, and even cleared a table in the corner for me and my peeps. Once there, they kept coming and checking on me, seeing if I needed a drink as I couldn’t go the bar and carry one back for myself. And even when I left, they helped me out, unbrella whipped out again.

The club is gorgeous, the music great, the service phenomenal. But what I really want to rave about is how absolutely wonderful the staff are. I was so grateful to them for making my night safe and easy, and for taking the time to be decent human beings. Longroom obviously hires well, and I will certainly be going back! (Especially when I’m all better!)

Thanks longroom!

longroom

Safe As House Is Monday, Nov 30 2009 

When you have to go to hospital, don’t you just WISH for a vicodin popping, abusive genius with a limp for your doctor?! Okay, maybe not, but it certainly makes for good TV viewing!

The show House stars actor Hugh Laurie as Dr Gregory House, the abrasive, insulting, sometimes cruel genius of a medical diagnostician. At this point, we are up to series five with series six about to air – and let me tell you: I’m totally hooked! House is not just another medical show like E.R. and the like, but a brilliant show about one man and the impact he has on the people around him. Greg House is a Doctor like no other – he is completely politically incorrect, sometimes so disconnected from people that he treats them like dirt for their show of humanity, but makes up for it with acerbic wit, obsession to diagnose patients, intelligence which is so focused its awe-inspiring and a rebellious nature which just makes his character fun to follow. He is a maverick in the true sense of the word. 

The character House works at Princeton‑Plainsboro Teaching Hospital as the Head of Diagnostics, and for the first three seasons had three Doctors on his team whom he abused, taught and challenged into being better doctors. They then all quit, being replaced by a new team, with Foreman (From the original team) coming back into the fray while his other former teammates continued to work at the hospital in different roles. House’s boss, the Dean of Medicine Dr Cutty, is the only person who is ever able to reign House in, but often by trickery due to the fact House follows no rules other than his own. Cutty and House have a sexual tension that dances through the plotlines, never quite turning into anything (Yet!) but adding a scintillating depth to their characters tug of war over right and wrong. House’s only friend is another Doctor at the hospital, the head of Oncology, Dr James Wilson who is almost the opposite of House. Wilson is caring, decent and thoughtful. The friendship makes no sense and yet they both need each other, play off of each other, gain strength from their friendship. 

With all of the players now in place, let me tell you a little bit more about the show. Basically, every episode introduces a new medical case in which no one can diagnose what is wrong with the patient. House will only take on the most interesting or bizarre cases, and doesn’t care much for the patients themselves. His main goal is ascertaining what ailment the dying patient has and treating them. Quite often he breaks ethical rules to gain this insight, pushing his team to work alongside him. House is brilliant, and picks up on things that no other Doctor would ever notice. He saves people in the most fantastic ways, and comes across illnesses and complications which just boggle the mind. It makes you really appreciate the amount of things that can go wrong with the human body, I’ll tell you that much!

It’s not easy – Even House gets things wrong. Due to his cases being so difficult, sometimes the diagnoses are wrong. Sometimes this is because of the circumstances surrounding the patient, wether they have lied to him, wont let tests be done or freakish environmental factors. Sometimes it’s because of House’s state of mind, or that of his team. Wilson and Cutty spend a lot of their time trying to keep House in check, for the sake of the patients and the hospitals reputation, but also to look out for House himself. Despite his acidic nature, they care for him, and even though he doesn’t quite accept it himself, he cares right on back. It is a startlingly dark look into the human psyche, into pain and suffering. These characters make you think, make you laugh, make you cry. They each have their own personal demons, their backstories which unfold across the seasons. In each episode you learn another little piece about every one of them, you understand their motives more and you marvel at the brilliance of each medical case and what they bring to it.

This series isn’t about heartwarming moments (Although there are a few), it’s about the darkness in life, in sickness and self hatred, but finding a place within that. Finding a reason to BE. The acting is flawless, the plots absorbing. It is never boring, always insightful and totally addictive. I highly recommend it to anyone with an attention span. You wont “Get It” if you don’t follow it closely. You wont understand its REAL brilliance unless you catch on to the undercurrents. But man, this show is so worth watching. Hugh Laurie is one of the best actors ever, and his character House is a surly, selfish genius that you cant help but love. House is safe in my top five shows EVER.

 

House