TONGUE PETALS 
May 1999
A YEAR OF SHUNT, A YEAR OF PORN...
It is now May 1999, Shunt has survived and shows promise of thriving into the next millennium. With Charlie's new album in the last stages of production, a 40th birthday just days away and more Shuntlings than ever, it seems an appropriate time to quickly run down the topics of the year before dissecting the discussions of May.
Strangely, the one thing not discussed in May was the recurring 'Theme of the Year': Porn. But that didn't stop Shuntsters from bringing up other year-long topics such as Delirium (who pop up at least once a month), breasts, art and of course, cats. In fact, KJ, Kat and Raven went so far as to ask "If Charlie were a cat, what kind of cat would he be?" Mike's vote: a pussy cat, of course! I myself am a breast man, so I've enjoyed the year immensely ;-)
May is supposed to bring flowers but on Shunt, with a new album tantalisingly near, it brought speculation. Dominic, Jensenne, Anton, Hunter, Dusty, Kirsten and KJ all guessed at whom "DG" could stand for and Gaz came through with some printed speculation about Diamanda Galás (Mute performance artist) as a possible collaborator.
Further Recoil chat erupted over such topics as new album innovations (Raven, KJ, Jennifer, Kristina) and the Antiques Show on BBC TV (Richard, Gaz, John). YellowOx thought Alan's house was 'weird'!
Gaz, Kristina, and SR guessed at possible television appearances for Uncle Charlie. Ken, KJ, and Dandymaida discussed retail sales of 'Unsound Methods' while Higsby and Susie wondered whether some people buy Recoil for the cover art alone.
Rich, KJ and Dusty got excited about the Spring editorial and KJ and Tanya began putting together a scheme for spreading Recoil throughout the world: buy a friend a Recoil album for the holidays. I always do!
KJ also wrote another 'Alan's piece' involving a touching CD-buying intervention session with Uncle Chuck. It was as sappy as an afterschool special but Shuntlings were amused. Raven asked everyone which Mode member they were most like while the Smashing Pumpkin's version of 'Never Let Me Down Again' was derided and Shuntlettes everywhere went positively cuckoo for Chuckie-Puffs when they talked of the 'Concert For The Masses' tour program.
May also brought fuss and fanaticism regarding the release of 'Star Wars: The Phantom Menace'. Much geekiness ensued as almost every Shuntster speculated on the new film. Alan Key, Hardy G, Adrian and KJ wondered what Recoil songs might augment the 'Star Wars' soundtrack, the resident Shnerds got into a 'Star Trek' vs. 'Star Wars' debate and rounded off the month by posting vague reviews in deference to our European friends.
Other subjects bandied about the Shunt masses included the universe (KJ, Lesley, Cybele), Ben's money (Dominic & Glenda), philosophy (the ever pithy SR and Micah), Nitzer Ebb (everybody and their mothers), going to the loo (Shuntlettes all), cheer leading, (Raven, Kat, KJ, Jenna), activism (Raven & Jennifer), lyric printing (Sabinal, KJ, Raven, Michael) and meeting famous folk (everybody). Simultaneously, Sierra received an e-mail from Recoil collaborator, Maggie Estep.
Shuntsters investigated the 'Real Doll' page, tried to decipher U2 lyrics, dished on Mexican food, helped Alexandra with her stage fright (congrats. on the gig, Alex!), explored the workings of Tower Records and questioned Ricky Martin's sexuality (the Latino pop star, not OUR Rick Martin). Dusty posted an article on sexual liberation and let Shuntlettes hack away at it while KJ was disgusted by the 90s, most singers and people who don't like Curve. SR concurred. Shunt memories lingered on the debauchery of collegiate parties while Anton and Dusty saw Gus Gus.
And last but not least, Bernard seemed busiest of all interviewing Johnny Marr and investigating DM and Recoil related newsgroups. Conclusion? The real news is HERE, folks. SR invented the Shunt Word & Definition of the year:

SINCLASSICAL
: How Recoil music will be described in a couple of centuries.
Quote Of The month also goes to SR for characterising 'Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas' as being:






"'Naked Lunch' for hetero-scum who think Letterman's a hoot-n-a-half."
And that raps up the first year of Shunt list madness. What will the next hold? Another Recoil album, an over-the-hill, eh-hem, seasoned and experienced Charlie, an incomparably sexy Hep and of course, more porn than Larry Flint could saturate a liberated Oklahoma with. Next month, Alan's 40th festivities are sure to get Shuntster's tongues waggling.
Until next month however, you've been tongued by:
Mike Daniella
Photography - Robert Mapplethorpe
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