What this blog isn't

It's not a Leeds-based exploration of the joys and challenges of shaping the mortar between house-bricks so that the rain runs off without undue damage.
Nor is it about looking at, achieving, or maintaining erections of the male variety. That's what the rest of the internet is for.
It's also not about drawing peoples' attention to the beauty of the Aurora Borealis by indicating it with an extended forefinger
It probably isn't SFW[Safe For Work] either (especially if you work in a church) thanks to the liberal sprinkling of profanities, heresies and blasphemies.

Sunday, September 9, 2007

Charged at last!

The rechargeable batteries for my wireless mouse are finally recharged after 6 hours. 6 hours of me having to use a graphics tablet and stylus as a mouse. Which is almost as much of a pain in the cheb as using a mouse for drawing. Still, it's my own fault - the box of charged batteries was getting low and the box of exhausted ones was nearly full so I should have thought ahead.

Still, at least I don't have to hook it up to a waterwheel to charge it, like I would have had to 400 years ago - shortly before a midnight pitchfork-and-firebrand-wielding visit from the villagers, demanding to know if Satan himself is the blue hedgehog inside 'the box that talks', and asking how well cooked I'd like to be at the stake.

Saturday, September 8, 2007

The terrifying Osama Bin Laden/Britney Spears link

Is it just me, or is there a disturbing parallel between Osama's comeback video and Britney's rebound on to the scene? They both look refreshed and determined, and yet they have both made poor choices for their reappearance on the world's stage. Perhaps Osama has been in rehab too - a consequence of his earlier smash successes - after being seen stumbling out of glitzy caves at 3 in the morning, coquettishly admitting to wearing no underwear during public appearances and shaving off his trademark ZZ Top beard in a desperate cry for help.

Whisked off to a top rehab cave on the Uzbek border by concerned aides, it is already rumoured that OBL is suing his parents for custody of Saudi Arabia, considering firing his manager and attempting to recover the rights for his back catalogue. Whispers circulating in the murdertainment industry that he was planniung to cover the IRA's greatest hit 'Manchester' have been downplayed by his management team.

An insider source reported: "...the talk of him using 'Just for Men' on his beard is baseless falsehood...his new dietician, Cyndi, has worked wonders using just wheatgrass shakes and organic goat's milk baths." The unnamed source also quashed rumours that OBL was trying to buy Idi Amin's skeleton, but confirmed that he had purchased Papa Doc Duvalier's loofah on Ebay, and it looked lovely above Pol Pot's fabled fondue set in the terrorist leader's swish new cave.

Oddly, one anagram of Osama Bin Laden is 'a blonde's mania' - so we're back to Britney again.

Thursday, September 6, 2007

In the wrong job...

I want to work in the film industry. Not because it’s glamorous or highly paid, but because you can be crap at your job, but as long as you have worked even once you still get to see your name roll past at the end of the film you worked on. Every time you watch it. For at least your lifetime.

Even if you were a rubbish best boy or gaffer, you still get paid and you get a footnote in history.

And if you die at work, whoa! You get a dedication at the end of the film.

If you or I die at work, do we get a forklift named after us –?

“Be careful with that! That’s the Clive Marshall Memorial Laptop! Oh, you didn’t know Clive, did you? His work was exemplary. ‘Course he was killed on that last job we did. A server fell on him. No, it didn’t crush him. He starved to death waiting for the IT engineer to turn up.”

Friday, August 31, 2007

Future archaelogists. The bastards...

I sometimes worry about future archaeologists finding our landfill sites, and them standing there in their pristine fusion-powered eco-friendly future.

Just standing there. Judging us.

The bastards.

I hope it’s not too far removed from now, just long enough for the bin bags to still be intact. We might fool them into thinking a landfill was the nest of some monstrous creature that stalked the lands, eating god knows what and shitting out huge shiny black pellets - the remains of their hapless prey. Whatever it was.

Envisage these archaeologists there, unshaven and groggy, and finally at work – having been dragged out of their bed in a cheap and cheesy floating motel – their polygamic future marriages at breaking point due to the stress of this project. These mystery creatures that roamed around in the early 21st century, (mostly in the north, funny that), and they didn’t even have the decency to leave a skeleton behind when they died.

The bastards.

Project head, Froop, turns to his assistant Goyp3 and barely notices that he’s picking the shreds of one of Ma Sappho’s self-inflating, self-destructing artificial sex mutants (non-kosher, may contain traces of nuts) from his pyjamas, having slept among the bin bags. He says he’s trying to get a feel for the creature, trying to know it.

His wives have kicked him out as well.

Froop says, “What did it eat? What did it eat? Our millions of binbag simulations every single minute in our fantastic future computer - you know, the one in my hip - all average out at the same basic prey. It's skeleton was mostly composed of two-litre Tango bottles, AOL CDs and rock-solid man-sized tissues. It’s blood was probably alcopop, as was the creature’s, and the only actual faeces we could find was wrapped in these bulging white parcels with cute pictures on them.”

He is beside himself with frustration and fear. “What is it we’re dealing with here? What if there is an enclave of them somewhere underground, or one waiting to be thawed out of the last iceberg at the North Pole Ice Museum? What will we do?”

His assistant tries to calm Froop, mainly because Goyp3 has only just replaced his clone-brother Goyp2 after the boss pushed him out of the window of some cheesy floating motel. “Relax, chief. We would probably hear it taking a shit from the next continent. Even if I was a massive beast, I wouldn’t want to pass some of those. They’re frequently pointy and nearly always dry on the outside. This one’s got an armchair in it, man!”

Well I suppose they’ll have it better than their descendants will. If we wait a thousand years there’ll be a good head of flammable gases building up under there, and the minute they stick their futuristic equivalent of a spade into the ground, the entire top half of the country will probably explode.

Hang on, though. I’m prepared to give our predecessors credit where credit’s due. What if the Victorians or the Romans hoped the same thing would happen to us all those years ago?

The bastards.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Learn from the past. Go on, there's loads of it!

Despite my frankly idyllic lifestyle, I find myself perturbed that I may be missing out on some of the more prosaic yet welcome aspects of a normal life. Specifically relationships. I see my friends all pairing off as they get older - engaged, married, murder-suicide. That kind of thing.

Withers is always here of course; and most of the time he is in good spirits and therefore good company, barring the occasional apoplectic raving about his dwarven hermaphrodite daughter and her unseemly love of wearing monocles in entirely the wrong orifices. But helpmeet, companion and oft-time card table that he is, he's still no substitute for the love of a good woman.

So to comfort myself in moments of solitude and loneliness I have taken to reading a lot of history books. Very liberating and reassuring; mainly because their lives were so unfortunate that we don't even have a suitable yardstick to measure how badly they had it any more.

The fear of growing old alone in the twenty-first century diminishes because you know that in the past you weren’t very likely to grow old at all. If you didn’t die of an horrific condition (usually dubbed something like 'Dead Man’s Mandeath') when you were a child or a teenager, then when you did meet someone, you didn’t have to worry if they were going to have an affair, or if your marriage would be happy and lasting - because you’d both be riddled with the same Dead Man’s Mandeath you escaped dying of a couple of years back.

Also, learning from the past makes a decision like which mobile phone, car or even toaster to choose very, very easy...


There I am at the showroom, and the salesman asks, “What are you looking for in a car then, sir?”

-Well…I’m looking for one that won’t assume its true form on the M1 when I’m taking the kids to Alton Towers.

-Have you got one that won’t imperil my mortal soul with sweet entreaties and false miracles?

-How many manifestations to a gallon do you get?

-Can I get it in red?

See? Easy! Now it's off to eat boiled pork from a plate in the form of a weevil-infested flat-cake before the King's tax collectors take all I have to pay for his crusade in the Holy Land.

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

US loses 190,000 guns in Iraq. Blames dog and runs out of the house, slamming the door

I have to give our wayward colony credit here - technically they themselves did not fuck up this time. No, instead AK-47's issued to Iraqi police and army personnel have gone missing.

It's not like losing a textbook at school - no deadline to find it otherwise your parents would be asked to buy another, and in the meantime here's the tatty one with the odd-smelling sticky mass plastered across the front cover. These are guns. Death-sticks with only one use. They're fuck-all good for opening tins or changing the channel on the television set or easing the misery of contact dermatitis. You'd think they'd be more careful, what with them being good at war and that.

-Where's the guns we gave you guys yesterday?

-Sir, our dog ate it.
-Sir, it's in my mate's bag and he hasn't come in today.
-I thought we were doing hand-to-hand today sir.
-Sir, my mam washed it and it wasn't dry in time.

-Never mind, men - we've got millions of the god-damn things lying around. Just get another one and get ready for inspection.

Friday, July 27, 2007

NASA astronauts drunk at launch. Well, wouldn't you be?

NASA is apparently disgusted and horrified & etc. at their space jockeys turning up at launch with a couple under the belt, so to speak. Considering they have to do the human equivalent of Wile E. Coyote strapping himself to a ten-storey firework over which he has no control, I'd be having more than just a couple of drinks; secure in the knowledge that it would make fuck-all difference whether I was sober or not.

The Challenger disaster proved that if something went wrong at launch, you wouldn't even have time to press a button to dump the rocket booster - let alone get off a quick text message to the wife, telling her you love her and to raise the kids Presbyterian. Hardly the long drawn-out and tense atmosphere of the 'Apollo 13' rescue is it? I can picture Tom Hanks in a studio meeting, scratching his head in that puzzled manner of his and saying exasperatedly - "The movie is only 40 seconds long, I only have one line, and that's 'Aaaaarg...'? No, it's not for me thanks."

Also, since a shuttle exploded on the way back, you could be sure that one of the pockets of my flight suit would contain a flask as big as a family-size Lenor bottle full to the brim with Chivas Regal, just for the journey home. Bollocks to NASA. If you don't want your astronauts to turn up for work drunk, stop making space shuttles out of bin lids and gaffer tape.

Floods, floods, floods

One of the advantages of living at the top of a big hill, apart from the daily contests between myself and Withers (my long-suffering but faithful butler) to see who can set the best paper-plane distance flight record from the upper floors of the manse, is that I am relatively unaffected by flooding. Looking down into the village below, my heart goes out to the simple but warm-hearted folk who live down there on the floodplains. There they go now - ferrying themselves about in makeshift boats, wearing makeshift wellingtons and carrying their makeshift children above the rolling waters to school.

Such sturdy folk - unbowed by having to live the life aquatic for six weeks, unbroken by lack of food or drinking water, mostly unharmed by the ravages of disease-filled raw sewage.

My chest swells with pride in the indefatiguabilty of my fellow man and I feel compelled to call down to them:-

"Did you see how far that paper plane went, mate?"