Things to Do in Self-Isolation: Jo-Ann Furniss’ Guide

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Technique by New Order(Album cover)

Jo-Ann Furniss – guest editor of Another Man’s newly launched 30th issue – shares isolation recommendations for all moods

We at AnOther believe that in this unprecedented time of isolation, economic uncertainty, and social distancing, culture is more important than ever. Over the coming weeks, we’ll be publishing daily to do lists, curated by the AnOther Magazine and Another Man teams, as they share things to look at, listen to, watch, read, or follow, to get you through. Here, writer and editor Jo-Ann Furniss – who guest-edits Another Man’s 15th anniversary issue – shares her recommendations.

When I’m fucked off – which is a lot – there are certain things I go to automatically to lighten the mood. Many of these things involve Evelyn Waugh and Eddie Murphy. Then there are things I can only fully appreciate when I’m fully depressed. Many of these things involve TS Eliot and the Second World War. So all in all, in this time of plague, it seems appropriate to have a combination of the two.


Things could be better: Trading PlacesEddie Murphy’s finest moment with John Landis and my most-watched film. Although Coming to America is good too.

Things could be worse: The World at WarSeriously, we’re pathetic. Look at what people lived and died through. A masterpiece of television and my most-watched TV series. 

Clearly, I have issues.


Things could be better: Technique by New Order. Woooo! In album form.

Things could be worse: Closer by Joy Division. Well, obvs, Ian Curtis wasn’t happy but he was brilliant.


Things could be better: The early work of Cecil Beaton. Utterly fantastic and he was just getting started.

Things could be worse: Don McCullin’s photography. The world’s greatest living photographer, and in my opinion, the greatest reportage photographer of all time. The empathy, the honesty, the brutality and beauty – if you think things are bad also read his autobiography Unreasonable Behaviour. This is how somebody truly makes a difference through what they do.


Things could be better: Decline and Fall by Evelyn Waugh. One of the most perfect pieces of comic writing ever and published when he was only 25.

Things could be worse: The Waste Land by TS Eliot. He wrote much of his greatest work in the middle of nervous breakdowns, including The Waste Land. It’s also the best time to read it.

And in between the two … Evelyn Waugh’s A Handful of Dust – a title taken from The Waste Land and Waugh’s master work. Plus, The Loved One – perfect, hilarious, brittle, brilliant and deathly.


Fuck social media and everyone being all Oprah Winfrey about everything. Apart from Gary Janetti, all hail Gary Janetti – he’s made his Instagram into a TV show.

And then there is YouTube and the people who have pleased me no end by uploading my favourite music documentaries/idiocy:

New Order Story – Written by Paul Morley and just quite wonderful. Bernard Sumner calls Tony Wilson a cunt in a car park.

Ghost Hunting with the Happy Mondays – Seeing is believing with Shaun Ryder and Bez trying to have a fight with ghosts. And Yvette Fielding getting so fucked off.

Trouble at the Top – Bucks Fizz: Making Your Mind Up – This has it all. Bitchy arguments and a big bust up in the Falklands resulting in two rival Bucks Fizzes.

Thank God for television and the people who preserve it on YouTube.