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A group distraction, presented by nige.


The first instalment of Interview52 is now complete! It started on Friday 18th July 2008 and finished on 13th September 2009. A little later than expected, but we got there.


52 mobloggers from around the world...

Some familiar, some not...

Each will publish a unique self-portrait, accompanied by a short interview.

Candid portrait meets candid interview.

The Rules

Every Friday the next interviewee in line will publish a new portrait and interview, consisting of their answers to the ten questions they have been given.

After they have published, the interviewee will then become the interviewer. They will be responsible for finding the next participant, as well as compiling the questions that this next person in line will answer. Interviewers can change as many or as few questions as they like, but they should change at least one before passing them on to the next lucky punter.

Thats it! Simple. More detailed instructions will be given to each interviewee as and when they are approached, so fear not.

The interviewees so far









Jig along



Laszlo Q. V. St-J. Xalieri








Jane Doe



Spiderbaby / Freakdog




George w/Blue Eyes






















Strange Little Girl




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The Anticat

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1. Where are you? Tell us the story that got you there.

I am at home at my flat in Leeds drinking tin and tonic. This is actually not where I should be. I’ve just got in after trekking on foot across town having abandoned my mum’s car (at a friend’s house) which was threatening imminent break down. I have had to abort my mission back to my parents house in the Dales where my boyfriend is and where I should be cat and dog-sitting. I suppose this was bound to happen after me spending the week complaining that the animal sitting had been boring and uneventful.

2. Why do you Moblog? And which of the posts on your Moblog are your favorite?

It all started when I worked at this pub called The Fav in Leeds. There was a small bunch of regulars and for a while they were practically our only customers, so we got to know them fairly well. One day in passing, I mentioned I had the same phone as one of the guys who spent more time in that pub than I did. He told me that if I had I camera phone then I should join this blog site thing. After some fairly extensive badgering I caved into curiosity and signed up. That guy turned out to be Joe and I've been great friends with him and his now wife Suzi (and their now daughter little Leila) ever since.

Many strange coincidences happened that first year on Moblog, including realizing that my sister Helen was already pretty closely linked to Moblog through another forum which was set up by some of the guys who started up Moblog and who Helen had inadvertently met whilst at university. Generally the world began to get a little smaller after I joined and people who frequented The Fav kept popping up on the site and this bizarre network of people who already knew each other unfolded.

I guess it was this intrigue that caused me to stick around for so long. That and the really great community here. It's been a great place to share... everything really. I could go on and on about Moblog, I think this place has got a lot of things right with regards to community and temperament and I find the environment a really inspiring place to share moments and ideas with interesting people who usually have their own ideas themselves, not to mention knowledge on a subject!

Oh! Favourite posts! One of my favourite posts was the day I tried to ban cat blogging on Moblog. Needless to say it seriously backfired. It's a shame you can't look back through Moblog chronologically because after this post the place was littered with cats. Mainly I enjoy the posts that get people talking, there are some photos I'm pleased with but the really memorable ones are the ones that spark a conversation. I think Helen's Oh Buoy, Oh Buoy post ( is the one that I recall making me laugh the most, but that one’s not mine (I'm sure there were more really awful pun posts but these are the only two tagged

3. Tell us one thing that you've learned in the last week. Or maybe something that surprised you.

This week I’ve mainly been feeling like there are a lot more people that I like than I don’t like. This isn’t really something I’ve learnt specifically this week but it does constantly surprise me how I can swing from a week of thinking I don’t like that many people at all to being overwhelmed by just how many people I think are really quite good eggs. Or if not good eggs, not too bad in a cake mixture.

4. Imagine you would have to spend the rest of your life on a deserted island. Which three items (or people) would you take and why?

Sometimes I already feel like I'm on a desert island. How I stave off this feeling is mainly through amusing conversations and ideas sharing, physical contact and visual output. So those are probably the qualities I value for my existence... which I guess is what the whole point of the question is. There are certain people who come pre-loaded with these qualities enabled already but I'm not naming any names.

5. What did you do today? And what would you do in an ideal day?

Today I got up at 6am got ready and drove from the Dales to Leeds. The whole day feels like it has been fraught with error but in actual fact it’s not been that bad, just driving and parking and cars and stuff in general stresses me out. I’m not superstitious but I did twitch twice when I counted thirteen students this morning and found myself parking on the thirteenth floor.

On an ideal day I'd probably wake with a nice shoulder massage, start working on something -really- good and finish it before lunch. Have a tasty and refreshing lunch. Meet some friends, go to a natural water park and slide down some slides made of rocks, bob around in the water for a bit, chat, go for a tasty dinner al fresco with a beautiful view. Enjoy some live music in the dark with some fire in the vicinity. Get a little heady on some wine and lie staring up at the stars engaging in profound and yet superfluous conversation. Then go to sleep in some white clean sheets in a big comfy bed surrounded by wood and low light shining through canvas and cuddles and dull, possibly cricket noises singing me to sleep.

6. Are there any causes or principles you would be prepared to fight for? What form would your protest take?

Yeh, I think there are probably a lot. Things like equal rights and other things that in my head are a complete given tend to flabberghast me when I find the world isn’t quite like that. You can’t fight every battle but I think you can do your part, which could be as simple as just speaking up when you don’t think something is quite right with what the people are saying around you.

I went down to the "How to make news and influence people" talk that Moblog was involved with and some interesting things were said that kind of relate to how I feel about this. Charlie Beckett discussed the topic with regards to the general public's reaction to charity campaigns, he suggested we are kind of distanced through mass publicity and we consume rather than confront and that emotional appeal isn't the same as empathy. Anyway, basically he was suggesting that traditional media only asks us to consider what's in front of us and new media allows us to engage and interact with a subject.

So I think if I was fighting for a cause I'd probably use this networking skill I've been honing for so many years.

I'm not opposed to more traditional ways of 'getting things done' though. For instance, I got pretty fired up when I discovered our new supposedly quite eco-considered home had no recycling facilities and the council didn't have us on their recycling route and had no recycling areas within Leeds that I could walk to. It was reasonably quickly resolved once I got in touch with our local MP though and I can now recycle most things except organic waste (which still upsets me).

7. What's your motto? Your tagline? Your favourite saying?

"Everything’s fiiiine"

8. What question were you hoping to be asked? And what would your answer be?

“Where do you see Moblog in 5 years, will you still be blogging?”

Well, technology wise it’s hard to say. Community wise, I hope the place is still thriving. I think in general, the photo blogging format is a winner and I think that the original camera phone premise has enabled people to share images that they wouldn’t previously have deemed really ‘fit’ to share. Moblog is more than just sharing an aesthetic, it’s more about telling a story or setting a scene through pictures and I hope it can carry on doing this. I think this simple format appeals to voyeurs and creatives alike and by creatives I mean people who like to fill in the gaps, who are imaginative and interested. As long as it continues to attract those kinds of people it will continue to appeal to me. I’m really enjoying the short stories and photographic challenge blog at the minute, so yeah basically I’d like to see more of what everyone’s got to share.

9. What movie have you most often recommended to others and why, or what's your favourite movie?

At college I recommend a lot of Michel Gondry's work. I love the way he manages to visualise feelings, quite baffling, difficult and surreal concepts in childlike and experimental ways. He's a pretty good all rounder too, a crafter and a philosopher. I'm particularly taken with "The Science of Sleep" but really any of his feature films would do. I get a kick out of shared experience and sometimes when I'm watching his films I feel like Gondry is lifting the top of my head up and tapping on my brain to say "hello." I love those split second sparks that happen when you feel you've really connected with something.

10. Of all the places you have travelled or lived, is there one in particular
that you think everyone should see some time in their lives, and why?
Conversely, is there one you never want to see again?

I’ve been very fortunate to travel to many special places. I still have very fond memories of a small fishing town in the Basque area of Northern Spain called Mutriku. I’d love to go back there; I’m very nostalgic for it because it just seemed to be this really lively place where the locals really knew how to entertain themselves.

More and more I realise how lucky I was too, to grow up in the Yorkshire Dales, it’s an incredibly lush environment and so very green. You’d be hard pushed to beat the view from my parent’s bathroom window.

I’m not sure there’s anywhere I’d discount ever going back to. I had an unpleasant time in Hull once but even that has it’s charm. All those rotten seaside towns like Blackpool and Llandudno can be depressingly bleak but they’re still very interesting and I’ve hope for them, there’s too much ‘what once was’ for them to go unvisited.

Posted by beth

8th May 2009, 00:57  


Euphro says:

Wow, thank you for sharing that. I wish I could write like you.

8th May 2009, 07:19

nige says:

At just after 7am this has quite literally made my day.

Your artistic sensibilities even come across in the way you answer questions, especially your ideal day. It's so great.

Completely agree with you on Michel Gondry too (and Spike Jonze for me, they have a kindred aesthetic imho). Have you seen his youtube channel? So funny. The vid of him solving the rubiks cube with his feet is a cracker.

Credit to OJ too - I knew she would come up with some great questions.

8th May 2009, 07:20

a fascinating and really insightful interview Beth - I'll revisit it again later

(edit) and I like your current hair colour

8th May 2009, 08:14

Jane Doe says:

Thought provoking as ever.
I remember the cunning puns phase - there was a great one about wine on (I think?) Mat's blog, and one on weaving or somesuch nonsense on mine. I think Moblog was a bit more chatroom like at the time.
Love the pic!

8th May 2009, 12:38

JokerXL says:

Interesting reading, thanks Beth.
You certainly have a way with words.

8th May 2009, 13:03

OJ says:

Interesting Beth. I didn't know about the making news and influencing people event. And your ideal day does sound gorgeous.

I have to laugh at the cat pointedly ignoring you in the photo. He or she clearly knows all about the anti-cat campaign.

Sorry you had such a torrid day yesterday. I think we both did. I'm not even slightly superstitious but it was the 7th you know....

8th May 2009, 14:02

Viv says:

:) xxx

8th May 2009, 18:46

beth says:

Mandy - Yes! Yes you can, shall i book a minibus?

Euphro - Thanks! But you do write pretty well yourself!

Nige - Thanks! My ideal day took some planning. I reckon it's almost possible too. I've not seen the YouTube channel, care to link me up?

Taniwha - They're definitely quite special after a few pints!

Dhamaka - thanks! It probably won't stay this colour for long though. Never underestimate the capacity to change ones hair colour.

Jane Doe - I'd like someone to tag them all in the same place really so I can revisit them.

Joker - Thanks, I think as Nige said there's some credit to go to OJ et al for some thought-provoking questions.

OJ - It was a TED talk about the XDR-TB campaign publicity. The basic premise was that the winner of the TED prize (James NAchtwey) got granted a wish and his wish was 'break a story of global significance in new and innovative ways'. I'm sorry you missed it, it was an interesting night, I wonder if there's a video anywhere of it.. Carole has her own opinions on the recap though which I've still yet to properly hear :)

Is the 7th a superstitious thing? I don't know about that one. Funny when you first posted that it said suspicious ... my day started by me saying "there's 13 students in so far" and my work colleague saying "that's a good number" and me saying "not for suspicious people" and then having to correct myself.

9th May 2009, 00:38

factotum says:

I really enjoyed the wit- both the photo and the text

9th May 2009, 00:52

nige says:

See although the original Rubiks cube vid has gone though. It was so damn popular a couple of years back. You can run a search anyway, as many people responded to how he actually solved a RC with his feet.

9th May 2009, 00:54

beth says:

heh thanks nige..

9th May 2009, 11:57

I have to second the comments about the cat in the photo. It makes me want to start a "Snubbed by Cats" group for cat-snubbing snapshots.

I think my cruel streak is showing.


9th May 2009, 17:28

OJ says:

I did originally type suspicious by accident Beth - and then corrected it, I'm pulling a mysterious face now!

Thanks for the James Nachtwey link. Funnily enough TED is one site/organisation I try to follow but I think I was too busy in November 08 to follow anything.

ps. I have both catblogged and catsnubblogged this afternoon as it happens. Don't look!

9th May 2009, 18:06

beth says:

It came through my email as a comment notification so I saw it there :)

9th May 2009, 18:13

JokerXL says:

There's a cool "Howdy-do-dat" Video on YouTube about that feet-cube thing.
Very clever.

And Here's one with him solving it with his nose!


10th May 2009, 07:13

I do, don't I. Must dig them up
I miss the punning - it was fun - it'd be great if they could be tagged and if more punning went on nowadays

10th May 2009, 18:21

beth says:

Yes, I wholeheartedly agree.

13th May 2009, 09:51

cracking interview Miss Beth! Thankyou!

15th May 2009, 19:43

Marianne(ahrensburg-at-nabu-hamburg-dot-de) says:

Hi Alex!Sorry for the lateness of our reply, some noraml comments get buried amongst the dozens of spam ones that get posted!Of course you're more than welcome to come along! All you need is your basic sports kit, shorts and trainers (indoor sports center).Training is tonight (which might be a bit short notice), or feel free to join on any other training session you'd like! Our full training schedule can be found here: Look forward to seeing you at a training session some time soon!Cheers,Phil

15th Jan 2013, 07:13

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