Robert Smith: Culture Vulture

Blackface, Dirty Martinis and dodgy Russian accents are all on the agenda in this week’s Culture Vulture.

Culture2 Happiness Mad Men Niche Smith Surry Vulture

A decidedly worse for wear Culture Vulture comes to you in the wake of my 21st birthday celebrations. Without getting into too much detail, 88% vodka, Leffe and Dirty Martinis are not the healthiest combination. My favourite former Tab columnist James Surry, however, made the evening with his birthday card depicting me in blackface with ‘Rob Smith Minstrel for Hire’ emblazoned across the front. His gift of vintage 1960s dirty magazines was pretty amazing as well. The copy of Mayfair has a guide to choosing your mistress. It reads like a Tab how to guide with all the layers of student irony taken away.

If your cultural tastes are rather more sophisticated than 60s porn and blackface, although if you watch Mad Men they’re probably not, then you should probably have a quick scan below. It has everything of cultural worth that I could be bothered to either think up or browse the internet for five minutes in order to find. Seriously guys, no one has ever e-mailed in suggestions. If you have something you want more than three people to attend tell me about it. It will save me time and, as every patronising successful businessman has told us, time is money.

Art: The Fitz has a collection of Maggi Hambling’s wave paintings starting tomorrow. I don’t understand the hard on artists seem to have over waves, but I guess why be subtle when you have a clumsy metaphor for the elemental power of nature ready and waiting.

Food and Drink: After my amazing 21st celebrations I have to mention Niche on Regent Street. It does 2 for 1 cocktails every night until 11. Unlike the Vaults, who only have this offer on four shitty reject cocktails, you can get everything on their list, from Classic Martinis to Cava Mojitos, and choose which brand of spirits they use. They also have an 88% vodka at a wallet hurting £7 a shot. Given that they open til 4am, you have no reason not to go.

Music: Are you going in for the kill? Are you doing it for a thrill? Well then get your ass down to the Corn Exchange on Thursday then.

Film: Todd Solondz has finally made a sequel to Happiness (one of the few films that has made me feel genuinely uncomfortable while watching it) with different actors playing all of the same roles. Although this is an interesting choice, it means we won’t see Richard Harris's son (and Lane Pryce in Mad Men) doing a Russian accent again. Anyway, I digress, it’s called Life During Wartime and is on at the Picturehouse all this week.

Television: I rescind last week’s comment about being bored of iPlayer. With the new series of Outnumbered and the fantastic highbrow yet entertaining It’s Only a Theory (starring Reginald D. Hunter and the writer of Outnumbered Andy Hamilton) to get through you never have to leave your room.

Style: Why did I start a style section? I’m a male history undergraduate and I don’t even get to read the Sunday Times style magazine during term time. Being a fan of leather satchels, however, I have to say my interest is piqued by Cambridge Leather Bags on Sussex Street. I haven’t had a look yet and given my lack of funds it might not be a safe decision.

Union: The Union has some pretty heavy hitters this week, with Sir John Major and Ulrika Johnson catering to most people’s tastes. If you’re really into politics though, head over to the University Arms for the Independent's Election Debate on Tuesday. Johann Hari, of Richard Littlejohn slaying fame, will be there.

YouTube Video of the Week: It’s a few months old now but Ricardo Autobahn’s ‘The Golden Age of Video is as if someone has recorded one of my wet dreams and put it on the internet.