No Complaints #37: Charleses, Cadillacs and Code

Ever since Jeremy Corbyn became the leader of the Labour Party, I’ve had a really bad cold. Just saying. In addition to that, I’ve also had some thoughts about radio comedy on the internet, and hated on epilogues of all kinds in podcast form. Endings should just... end.

Things to read

“Hollywood money isn’t money. It’s congealed snow, melts in your hand, and there you are. I can’t talk about Hollywood. It was a horror to me when I was there and it’s a horror to look back on. I can’t imagine how I did it. When I got away from it I couldn’t even refer to the place by name. “Out there,” I called it. You want to know what “out there” means to me? Once I was coming down a street in Beverly Hills and I saw a Cadillac about a block long, and out of the side window was a wonderfully slinky mink, and an arm, and at the end of the arm a hand in a white suede glove wrinkled around the wrist, and in the hand was a bagel with a bite out of it.”

Dorothy Parker, who provides the title inspiration for this newsletter, being excellent. Email to Pocket.



“If the right person didn't receive his fair share of the cut, a truck's tires might get mysteriously slashed, or a brick might fall unexpectedly from a rooftop. Once, while filming below an elevated subway track one night, Hill says a local gang began urinating on the actors from above. According to Beck, another shoot had to be called off after dozens of kids swarmed the block's abandoned buildings, jeering the Warriors incessantly from the normally vacant windows.”

I only saw The Warriors very recently, but I was immediately in favour of its leather-vested strangeness. Turns out, the process of making it was pretty strange, too. Email to Pocket.



“I love working in this atmosphere. I may be six or seven decades older than some of the people I'm working with – and many of them have PhDs or masters degrees, which I don't – but I'm accepted as an equal. My voice is respected for what I bring to the table, for my experience, for my insights, and for my inventive, problem-solving nature.”

Three reasons this woman is incredible: 1) she is 91 and works in Silicon Valley 2) she is inventing things that make elderly people’s lives better 3) her name Barbara Knickerbocker-Beskind. Email to Pocket.



“One Sunday, while I was doing my homework, I heard my mother in the kitchen, prepping beef stew and singing. When she finished, she sat next to me at the table, the first time we sat together like that in 14 years. Her dark skin didn’t match mine. Her hair was short and tight against her head – I remembered it as long. Her fingernails were chipped. Her lips were parched. Her singing sounded strange. The fantasy of reunion was a lie. No one could patch up my family and make it beautiful. The only things about my mother that conformed to my memory were her cheekbones and the white rosary she wore around her neck.”

A magnificent, incredible, heartbreaking refugee story. Email to Pocket.



“A woman interested in the digital transformation simply cannot inhabit the role of an avuncular, all-knowing figure ready to declare, definitively, whether technology is ‘good’ or not. A female speaker is more likely to be asked if she knows how to code, the question implying she lacks the authority to comment on something as allegedly complex as the internet.”

Never forget that the internet is basically just a billionaires-only boys’ club. Email to Pocket.


Things to listen to

I've recommended You Must Remember This before (in No Complaints #19, to be precise). But its just-concluded arc about Charles Manson’s Hollywood is too good not to give you all another prod to listen. I wolfed it down in about three days, addicted to learning about how all these famous people I’d heard of from the Sixties had tolerated and even encouraged this mad, dark man who ended up murdering so many people. The blend of opinion, reporting and storytelling is just right in this podcast, as is the use of voice acting vs narration. Go to and download all the ones with “Charles Manson” in the title now; you won’t regret it.

Things to watch

Everything is a remix.

Charlie Chaplin's love life.

Ellen is the greatest.

Compulsory medieval thingamabob

Head-foot, obvs.

The guest gif

Really? You’re making this my problem?

THE END. See you next time*!
*Next time will probably be next Friday. If you want to suggest things I should include in the next one of these, please do reply and send me links.