Sunday, December 31, 2006
This year it was a tie between ex US President Gerald Ford, and The Godfather of Soul, James Brown. Chirpy cockney comedien Charlie Drake was the token English "oh, was he still alive?" radio comedy star from the 1950's to croak it - but he peaked a little too soon and passed away just before the festive season got underway.
But what is it about Christmas Day that proves so fatal when combined with a certain level of celebrity status? Maybe this will prove the acid test of whether reality TV stars are true celebrities - if Jade Goody pops her clogs on the 25th, the case will be well and truly proven.
Maybe its all a conspiracy. James Brown dies sometime back in October, but had been kept in a large freezer somewhere in an industrial estate on the outskirts of Mobile, Alabama until it was time to wheel him out. And if Gerald Ford's death had been announced earlier that morning, maybe Mr brown would still be there waiting for next year ....?
And No-one dies on Boxing Day - its always Christmas Day.
Is this why The British Royal Family always open their presents on Christmas Eve - leave it until the next morning and there is a statistically significant probability that someone will have to accept 2 copies of the "101 uses for a Dead Republican" book ?
But the person I feel most sorry for this year would have to be Saddam. Looking out of his cell as they guards took down the decorations and started recycling the Christmas tree, for a while there he must have thought he had made it ...
Maybe Celebrities of a certain age should be made aware of this, and warned to be very careful whenever they start to smell turkeys roasting in the oven overnight or hear the sound of Jingle Bells.
Friday, December 22, 2006
But behind the simple and stark "3-0" scoreline lies a sad and tragic tale.
For Shi Yongsheng is actually China's greatest living Darts player.
The Champion, the torch bearer, the King of this Noble Sport of Darts to a nation of over one Billion souls.
He has flown across the world to the high temple of arrowerary in fashionable Essex, and taken his place proudly, upholding the honour of his people, and representing the abilities of the great nation of China and its "Communism with a capitalist edge" system to produce some of the most successfu drug free sporting people the world has ever seen.
No doubt millions - nay, significant fractions of a Billion - will have been on tenderhooks watching and praying for their hero to overcome the forces of the West and do the entire nation proud.
And instead, he now has to face the long lonely journey home, and no doubt undergo many weeks of debreifing by party offficials, and a rigorous interrogation from the press, all of whom will be asking him the same, painful question.
"So, tell us how you got beat 3-0 by Andy "The Pieman" Smith then?"
Wednesday, December 20, 2006
Every year, someone - and its never a consistent someone - decides that it is a great idea to send out the worlds tiny-est Christmas cards. Small, perfectly formed, always with a little glitter glued on - and in an envelope barely big enough to accommodate the stamp, never mind an address as well
But, this is one example where the postal service wreaks a strange transformation onto this gift of thoughtfulness and personal communication.
Inevitably, what starts off as...
"I know Christmas is a time of tradition, however this year I wanted to send out cards that show I am a bit funky, stylish, original and cutting edge. So, a tiny but cute contemporary card will fit the bill exactly. How Brilliant am I???"
..ends up - after a brief postal journey - in the hands of a bemused recipient who almost immediately - and without fail thinks...
"well, its clear that the person who sent this pathetic apology for a Christmas card clearly can't be f-cked to spend more than the bare minimum on cards and also wanted to avoid the mental hardship of making this any more personal a greeting than simply writing their initials. What a cheap - in both senses of the word - miserable old sod they are, and frankly I'd rather have not been sent a card than this insult to me, my family and the whole 2000+ year Judeo-Christian/Retail Frenzy festive tradition"
However, as the cards are swept off the shelves in January, under a fug of turkey flatulence and binned along with the unwanted cracker gifts that fell off the dining table, all of this is fortunately - usually - forgotten as an abberation of the season.
The time to really worry however is if you ever been sent a really really tiny Birthday card...
Friday, November 24, 2006
This event didn't really make the evening news, and as far as I am aware, nowhere held any street parties reminiscent of the Queens Silver Jubilee.
However given the explosion of useless and marketing-engineered "weeks" on offer in the calendar today, is there a proper criteria for what constitutes a proper "week"?
Maybe its if Clintons produce a range of cards ?
Tuesday, November 21, 2006
Ms Jowell told MPs:
"An additional cost of £400 million, not included in the original bid, is in order to fund the delivery partner whose overriding responsibility is to ensure the costs of the Games are kept on budget and that the timescales are kept."
You can't make this up..
Thursday, November 16, 2006
Will we next see the accomplished thesp appearing with Graham Norton on Celebrity come Dancing as she seeks to emulate the Baby Spice popstress Emma Bunton's career as well as looks?
Monday, October 30, 2006
Saturday, October 21, 2006
Wednesday, October 04, 2006
Saturday, September 23, 2006
This rather optimistic item is to be seen in shops at Dusseldorf Airport.
Now, don't get me wrong. I have nothing against Dusseldorf. Its pleasant enough. It has a river and some nice beer.
But amongst German cities it lacks either anything distinctive (like maybe a "Munich" or a "Berlin" - or even a "Hamburg"), yet also fails to have the kitsch or ironic value of somewhere actually crap - or even dull.
Dusseldorf is not quite even in the middle. Its not exciting, its not distinctive, but it's also not really bland or dull - just good enough not to be actually boring, not quite good enough to be "good".
So, a Dusseldorf t-shirt is no things to all people. You cannot use it to celebrate its crapness - as it isnt - but this garment will not convince anyone you are trumpeting your admiration a truly great city either. And you cannot even wear it ironically in a celebration of mediocrity.
Because its better than that.
Tuesday, September 19, 2006
Thursday, September 14, 2006
As supply side economics kicks in all over London, the going rate for hanging a new door, or repairing a sash window is plummeting.
However, the field of plumbing still remains a landscape littered with cowboys brits sucking on rollups and spilling cold tea all over newly (Polish-) laid pine floorboards whilst muttering darkly "Corgi Registered..? Of course I am luv" as the pricing meter ratchets up at a rate designed to strike fear into the hearts of even someone as profligate with money as the 3rd-car driving City bankers live-in polish nanny and au pair with her own Platinum credit card for "household extras".
Can the EU not instead focus on what's really important? A short programme of research among the next wave of accession countries should be undertaken. Surely somewhere in Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Republic of Montenegro, and the Republic of Serbia, Albania, Macedonia or Turkey there is a top quality further education college that is already, or can easily be re-focused entirely to producing people skilled at the combination of pipe bending, valve replacement, boiler installation and light welding needed to be a top class - and cheap - plumber?
Maybe a more strategic vision is needed, and each accession country should be allocated a in-demand task to concentrate on even now? Moldovans could be learning to tile bathrooms in kindergarten. Ukranians can start to be taught electrical wiring from pre-school (there will of course be casualties in anything involving introducing toddlers to 240v live wiring systems, but this is simply the price of progress). Belarussians could even now be thinking about how to teach Dentistry to 5 & 6 year olds - who could safely practice secure in the knowledge that any mistakes will only be on their first set of teeth anyway.
The possibilities are endless - with enough planning and foresight, every single function in European society could eventually be allocated to a keen, hardworking and eager national or ethnic grouping.
One day even our reality TV contestants could all be flown directly in from the Tucks and Calicos Islands, having been trained to be dysfunctional freaks from an early age. if only we could then find someone to take over watching the damn programmes .... that would be a real result...
Tuesday, September 12, 2006
When I was younger, the images of Poland I saw on TV showed a nation who's three key skills appeared to be:
- Giving Motty the opportunity to say "and finally England will face a difficult final away game in Katowice in the World Cup / European Championship* Qualifiers. But looking at the rest of the fixtures I think they should be confident of picking up enough points in other the group matches not to make that a must-win game"***
- Growing Moustaches
- Not building ships in shipyards, as they all were on strike instead
And 1. & 3. were never, ever combined. "After narrowly beating Andorra away through a Bryan Robson late strike, England now face the difficult task of breaking through a line of anti-government pickets and then finishing the internal fitout of over 4o twin cabins on decks 3 through 5 of the MVS Nord Zee in order to qualify for the finals in Spain. Do you think Kevin Keegans experience over the past 3 seasons in the Bundesliga with Hamburg will help us out there Jimmy?"
Once Lech Walensa succesfully took power, how did the Western media miss the transformation of a nation of blokes in caps who were well practiced at making banners and standing around lit braziers shouting "Wy jesteście złymi człowiekiem kto (który) pozostawia jego przyjaciół strajkujący !"** into a whole army of easy-on-the-eye women with good interpersonal skills and deep empathy with young children and keen and reliable hardworking carpenters with an innate knowledge of the arts of mixing cement and applying plaster?
Over the same timeframe Britain turned into a nation of overweight listless workshy chavs. What went wrong?
Maybe we should capitalise on the once-in-a-generation economic opportunity this offers us?
Britain could close all its state run schools, and ship the internees off to Poland for basic training.
Then we could simply import nice, hardworking economically productive Polish, and Polish-trained people back into the UK when they got to 17 or 18. Closing the schools would save billions in taxation, thus alowing the rate of national insurance to be lowered, and income tax thresholds to rise considerably, which in turn would make it far less likley that the incoming Polish (working) population would feel the need to try and avoid tax, thus boosting the net receipts to the UK Treasury and allowing us to invest even more in making England into truly a place Polish people would want to come and live in.
* delete as appropriate
** "You are a bad man who leaves his friends on strike" (the website wouldn't translate "scab")
*** They never did though.
Monday, September 11, 2006
Soon Poland will be a deserted wasteland, with rows of empty houses, almost entirely denuded of population and with the few poor souls remaining roaming around in crumpled clothes as their half feral children roam the streets dodging between streams of water pouring out of leaky guttering, as there will be no-one left in Poland with the necessary skills of ironing, childcare and minor property maintainance.
Meanwhile Hammersmith will become a pristine beacon of city perfection, with every house featuring at least 2 or 3 different loft extensions. There will be stiff competition between the female and male Polish populations as supply exceeds demand and competing teams of Polish craftsmen start muscling in on the cleaners work, offering to completely replaster rooms and build new fitted furniture as an alternative to dusting.
As 95% of the population of Hammersmith will shortly be Polish, there will be no opportunity for the Polish immigrants to integrate and interbreed with the UK population, and so evolution will in turn create a new super-breed of Polish worker capable of both cleaning, ironing and sanding an original oak door all at the same time.
Friday, September 08, 2006
One episode of the Ricky Gervais series "Extras" featured East Enders "hard man" Ross Kemp.
The whole series is built around famous people playing parodies of themselves.
It veers from the seriously famous (Bowie, A-List Hollywood stars) to Ross Kemp Les Dennis and soon Keith Chegwin
In the Radisson Hotel in Moscow, the board you see on the left appears in reception, listing the "famous"people who have stayed there:
Some of the notables are:
Both Cinton and Bush have stayed there. Both are pretty famous, by any measure you care to use or apply
Sharon Stone. Hollywood A-lister, actress and also tireless charity worker. Famous? Check.
Claudia Schiffer - One of the worlds top Supermodels - and for many years a face on every billboard in Russia - certainly famous.
Let there be Rock! Famous once in the West, and still massive market for their 3-chord anthems in Russia, Deep Purple are Big in Japan, and bigger still in Moscow even now.
And finally, the latest addition:
How did this happen?
Was an eagle-eyed Slavic receptionist also a fan of illegally downloaded episodes of Eastenders?
Was an ex-KGB bellman also someone who had secretly aspired to join the SAS and had been a underground fan of the Kemp-meister's later works in homage and training for his defection?
Did our Ross tell them himself, and use his intimidating East End Gangster look to bully his way onto the board...?
Did he - or th ehotel - add "Actor" after his name?
Or is the power of the Gervais/Merchant/Pilkington podcast now so all-pervaisive that even Moscow Hotels are no longer immune...?
Kidnapping has got so frequent that they now have 24-hour kidnapping. They had to put a time limit on it, as someone worked out that if they had carried on with the old fashioned "keep 'em until they pay up" kidnapping, everyone in the entire city would have been being held by kidnappers by the middle of June 2009.
The latest idea is self-service D-I-Y kidnapping, where you get taken to a cashpoint and you are forced to get your own ransom. Even quicker than 24 hour kidnapping, and saves on phone calls and buying newspapers (to cut the letters out of) too.
Some busy businessmen are now starting to schedule kidnappings for over their lunch hour "Sorry Chico, can't do lunch today, I'm being kidnapped - how about next Wednesday?"
People are arranging to be kidnapped at the same time as their friends - and having (surprise) kidnap parties whilst they are away.
Someone has brought out a new book - "The Kidnapped Diet". Next month the "Try to Escape Workout Video " comes out too.
Online kidnapping will be the next thing - once broadband penetration in Mexico reaches a critical mass. Then you will be able to go online and order your own personalized kidnapper to come to your house at a time of your choosing (in any given two hour window) with a mobile ATM, give you a quick slap round the chops and bob's your uncle, job done.
However, in a city of 20 million people, you can see how the "quickie" kidnap came into being. Imagine Cortez The Kidnapper leaving his suburban hideout, catching the 8:32 train into town, pulling his knife on "El Victimo de Diaz", manhandling them back to the hideout.... and finding a family of 16, complete with blind, deaf Grannie, 2 goats, 3 pigs and a full set of Le Creuset bean re-frying apparatus have moved into the "vacant for half a day" property and are busy setting up a Taco Bell franchise.
Tuesday, September 05, 2006
Monday, September 04, 2006
However George Lucas seems to have gone one better. In casting Hayden Christensen in the lead role in two of the biggest grossing films of all time, Star Wars II and III, he has managed to cast an actor who is not even famous AFTER appearing in the films.
Sunday, September 03, 2006
Large sections of the workforce regularly went on strike. Sometimes for better pay and conditions, but most frequently in opposition to management's plans to close down their factories or workplaces - presumably because they were less efficient than other parts of the operation, or were simply not making as much money as they had planned.
So, stoping all production at that location was a great weapon for the strikers to use.
However, the odd thing is that this had actually worked in the past....
Thursday, August 31, 2006
Normal Person: "Hello Landlord, I'd like a pint of your local Ale please"
Ruddy Cheeked Country Type at the bar (interrupting): "Ooo-aaarh. You're not from round these parts are you? On holiday are we?"
Normal Person: "Yes, we've just driven up from
Ruddy Cheeked Country Type: "Its all the fault of those Ar-abs and Immigrants coming here I tell you. I'd string 'em all up, me - String 'em all up I tell you, and I'd do it myself"
Normal Person: "Erm..."
Landlord: "Here's your pint. Thats tuppence ha'penny"
Monday, August 28, 2006
A former IRA assassin turned supergrass is claiming he had no idea a local pub was predominantly used by the gay community after he was robbed by two men he invited back to the home of a journalist he was house-sitting for.
Sean O'Callaghan had been an active member of the IRA until he was turned by the Irish police and became an informant. He was involved in the killing of a female member of the UDR and an RUC policeman. Unlike other so-called supergrasses he has not remained anonymous and has written a book about his experiences as well as a regular column in the Daily Telegraph.
He was staying in the home of well-known journalist and writer, Ruth Dudley Edwards, on Popes Lane in Ealing. One evening in September of last year he decided to visit the nearby pub, West 5, which has a predominantly gay clientele. 52 year old Mr O'Callaghan claims not to have been aware of the nature of the pub but that he had chosen it because it was the nearest to where he was staying.
He met two men at the pub and later invited them back to his friend's house. Once there they knocked him to the floor and he was threatened with knife and tied up whilst they burgled the house. Among the items stolen were cash, credit cards and Ms. Edward's computer which has not yet been recovered.
The police apprehended and charged Yousef Samham, aged 26, in relation to the incident. He denied the robbery saying that Mr. O'Callaghan had asked to be tied up as part of a bondage session.
Now, this story has quite a few odd and amusing elements to it:
- An IRA killer is beaten up by two (presumably) rather camp blokes
- Someone thinks "who can I get to house-sit for me?" And settles on an IRA killer as the best option. And he then fails to keep the place safe.
- Will these experiences also make it into the Daily Telegraph?
- What "experiences" have been omitted from the column so far - both IRA related and post-IRA ..?
- What bizzarre sort of bondage session involves theft of IT equipment as part of the, erm, "act"?
..but my clear favourite comes from the juxaposition of implications that Mr O'Callaghan has homosexula tendencies, and the information that he was "turned" by the police...
Good Cop, Camp Cop I presume..?
Tuesday, August 22, 2006
The tramps are always smelly, useless layabouts begging on the street
The dogs are always film-stars in waiting, with that cute mongrel crossbreed look, characterful faces and are always even tempered good natured beasties, relaxed at lying in busy doorways, on highstreets and at cashpoints.
How does this happen?
What attracts such nice dogs to such uselss owners in the first place ? Surely they could find someone a little better ....
What is this penguin doing?
Tuesday, August 15, 2006
"Guernsey is being visited by a touring company which involves more than 30 horses, dare-devil stunt riders and mythological beasts!
The 2006 production features the Spirit of the Horse quadrille display team, Arabian Stallions in the court of St Petersburg, Germany's favourite comedy horse, outstanding Spanish horsemen from Valencia and the re-creation of an equestrian act first performed two centuries ago."
Now, of course, the stand out act has to be: "Germany's Favourite Comedy Horse"
A description that begs many questions.
- Why is the horse clearly not as popular in other Germanic-speaking countries such as Austria?
- How many comedy horses are there in Germany for this one to have to claim to be the "favourite"?
- Is there an act touring the world that bills itself as "Germany's Second favourite comedy horse"
- Why has alternative horse comedy not yet taken hold in the Teutonic Equine world?
- Can a horse legitimately do gags about sheep, cows and goats without being accused of racism?
- Is there a thriving network of equine comedy clubs, held in stables all across the Bavarian countryside?
- Or is the Horse-comedian a relatively new city-based phenomenon?
- What night of the week is best for equine comedy?
- Why do most comedy horses actually start out as teaching horses ?
- Does a vet need to be in attendance at all equine comedy gigs, just so if an equine comedian gets a rough ride from the audience and is clearly dying on stage on stage, they are on hand to administer a mercy-killing shot to the head?
- As the theatrical good luck cry of "break a leg" would, for a horse, actually equate to a death sentence, is there another well-wishing phrase used for equine comedy performers?
- Does being "the favourite comedy horse" mean your career then takes off, probably into hosting daytime gameshows on satellite channels?
- Horses are known for having large nostrils. So just how expensive would a comedy horse's coke habit be ?
- What would heavy coke consumption do to a horses poo?
Wednesday, August 09, 2006
There are over 20 million people in Mexico City. Thats three times as busy as London. Three times as many cars. 3 times as many buses. 3 times as many traffic wardens. 3 times as many mothers in 4x4's on school runs.
It's also the worlds most dangerous city.
You'd think people would move away really.
(Perhaps they are all waiting for a property price boom ?)
Friday, August 04, 2006
Tuesday, August 01, 2006
Dried peas are even less appealling
So why not go the whole hog and coat them with Wasabi, the foul tasting chilli-extrordinaire style addition that often renders sushi uneatable?
Go on - you know you want some....
Monday, July 31, 2006
We'd be throwing "corn" on the barbie and making bread with "Bittercorn"
Maybe bread would have never been invented - "Bittercorn" would have been an agricultural dead end wth no market and appalling branding.
"Its more bitter than normal Corn, and its so small it falls through the grill onto the burning coals."
Hardly a great seller.
Sunday, July 30, 2006
The British Domesticated Ostrich Association was founded in December 1992 to support the development of the industry in the United Kingdom. And haven't they done well !
You may also be able to subscribe to their magazine, "Ostrich News"
It previously was known as "Ostrich Talk Profile" - but presumably this attracted the unwanted attentions of people wishing to learn how to talk like ostriches, in a Dr Doolittle stylie.
Saturday, July 29, 2006
Its all the same:
There are a remarkable number of countries, regions, cities, ethnic groups, tribes, societies and agglomerations of individuals who believe that their own national special dish is a unique, super special, individual, historic and soooo tasty you will never want to eat anything else again contribution to global cuisine.
These people are almost entirely the same as those who's national dish almost inevitably appears to be several pieces of chicken put on a skewer and chargrilled.
It also always comes with a bit of vaguely hot red sauce served on the side...and a crap salad.
"Georgian culinary experts are famous for various dishes cooked on skewer above burning coals" - from http://www.sairamtour.com/silkroad/sr_04_2.html
I can say that there is hardly a man in my country that wouldn’t like shashlik, cause it is king of dishes of Azerbaijan cuisine.
The most common preparations are roasting and grilling, which produce the famous Turkish kebaps, including döner kebap, the national dish.
Saturday, July 22, 2006
The Tourism Authority of Maharastra (Bombay's State) is promoting the region during the monsoon season as a destination to Arabs........as they have never seen it rain!
This may be a short term solution though.
Spend one week in Mumbai in July-September, and you will almost certainly never feel the need to see rain ever again in your entire life.
Friday, July 14, 2006
Appealing as the packaging looks, there is no way I am going to be seen walking round holding an entire can of my very own Funky Juice in my sweaty hands.
And I certainly would not contemplate tasting anyone else's either, even if they offered it to me for nothing.
One can only wonder what the slogan actually translates as.....
Thursday, July 13, 2006
Wednesday, July 12, 2006
Monday, July 10, 2006
What I did on my summer holiday
By Theo Walcott Esq aged 8 1/2
I went to a place called Germany with my Uncle Sven and some other grown up's. It is a country in Europe where a bad man called Adolf used to live with his nazties, he does not live there anymore, Uncle Owen does live there, and the grown up's say I cant talk about the bad man as it will make Uncle Owen cry if I do.
In Germany there are lots of castles and some mountains. We are staying in a place called Baden Baden that's a silly name, Uncle Frank has the same name as his dad, that's silly too, his mum must get their underpants mixed up all the time.
On the aeroplane Uncle Sol sat next to me, he got me some toffee and wants to be my friend, he works at the place where I do my YTS, so does Uncle Freddy but him and Uncle Sol are not best friends anymore.
Uncle Owen met us at the airport, he talks foreign, Uncle Wayne, Uncle Steven and Uncle David also talk funny, my mum says Uncle David talks like Orville, he is a duck, Uncle Sol say's uncle David wears dresses and knickers, and asked me if I had ever worn them. Uncle Sol got me some pop.
In Germany the grown ups are going to play football, my grandad says we beat them in the olden days before my mum was born. That is a long time ago.
While the grown up's went to play football so I went shopping with Auntie Vicky and some other girls she bought me a big ice cream and got herself a little one but she said she was full before she had eaten any and threw it away. She bought lots of shoes and handbags and let me play with Brooklyn. She say's she used to be in a pop band and sang me one of her songs, I think she was telling fibs.
I told Uncle Sol about my day out with Vicky and he sulked, then he bought me an even bigger ice cream with lots of hundred's & thousands on it. All the other grown up's have a girlfriend except Uncle Sol so he plays with me while they go out. Uncle Sven says I must keep Uncle Sol happy, that's why I got taken on holiday.
The grown up's went to play Football against somebody called Sweden, Uncle Sol was crying as Uncle Freddy played for them and would not talk to him. Uncle Sol bought me lots of toffee today and some crisps. Uncle Sven is from Sweden and I heard him on the phone to their boss last night.
Uncle Michael hurt his knee and had to go home to his mum for a plaster.
Uncle Peter is a giant, a proper giant like you see in books, he is rubbish at football though.
Uncle Wayne had a sore toe at the start of out holiday but it got better so they let him play football. Uncle Sol got me a present but I do not like it. He says all Germans wear leather underpants and I should while we are here, they are too tight for me.
All the grown up's started to call Uncle Wayne a potato head who stood on somebodys spuds. He got shouted at by the referee. They are all saying that we have to go home now. Uncle Sol was crying again and I had to sit on his knee to make him stop. He had his mobile phone in his pocket, I think.
or if thats busy
Click away and Enjoy
Sunday, July 09, 2006
Wednesday, July 05, 2006
Friday, June 30, 2006
...may be taken away and destroyed.
Lets look at this in more detail
"May" be taken away. Not "will", but "may"
Thats not very specific is it?
Who decides how its destroyed?
What are the options ?
Airport jobs can be highly unionized - is there a demarcation issue between the person who decides "how" it is destroyed, and the one who does the "destroying" ?
How do you apply for the job of Baggage Destroyer?
If you walk into the interview with a nice new briefcase, is it "bye bye, thanks for coming" before you can sit down ?
Are there headhunters, or agencies - like those who spot top models, who spend their time lurking on railway platforms for people with really knackered bags ?
Is it like some MI5 agency - if you take back your Samsonite Lifetime Guaranteed suitcase after less than 3 months, you get a call one evening "hello sir, I represent an executive agency of the UK Government, and would be interested to know if you would ever consider a job in Airport Security?"
Tuesday, June 27, 2006
Thursday, June 22, 2006
One exception is Aldi, the name of the discount supermarket chain
This is a short German word for:
"if you can see this sign, you are either lost or really should try harder to improve your economic lot in life to allow you to move to a better neighbourhoood"
Thursday, June 08, 2006
One of historys greatest monuments ....?
Well, whilst many had thought it was a nearly-3,000-year-old historic site, this sign proves The Acropilis is yet another over budget, behind schedule EU-funded project.
Someone better phone the Daily Express !!!
Friday, May 26, 2006
Mexico is a country famous for its signature dish...
But shavers can't be that exciting, surely?
My theory revolves around te fact that Remington also do ear and nose hair removal technology
Maybe he bought the company because one day (just after middle age crept up on him unexpectedly) he found the need to own some nose-hair clippers. However after he walked into the shop, a "teenage boy & condoms incident" happened to him, and faced with the shame of being seen asking for the latest hairy-ear-trimmers, he decided that buying the whole company was maybe the less embarassing option ?
Sunday, May 21, 2006
Sunday, May 14, 2006
Saturday, May 13, 2006
They promise to be able to deliver all the following items to your room:
Now, most of these look pretty sensible. I have myself forgotten a razor, and a missing button creates a need for a sewing kit that otherwise would be unlikley to make it through airport security.
Plasters, Savlon & Dettol - I can envisage an urgent need for these items.
But.... an "entangling comb"?
What bizzarre situation or contrived sequence of improbably events could possibly result in you suddenly - in the middle of the night perhaps - feeling a desparate need to have tangled and knotted hair?
I can't imagine of such an occurrence.
But - if you can, I certainly know a hotel where you should stay when visiting Bangalore
Wednesday, May 10, 2006
This appealing proposition was on offer in Brussels Airport.
Other competing restaurants offered views of brick walls, a patch of bare earth and a slab of unpainted concrete to entice the diner. In each case there was no apparent correlation with the ethnicity of the food on offer...
On visiting the establishment, I now believe the word they may actually have been looking for was "runway"
Friday, May 05, 2006
Monday, April 24, 2006
Sunday, April 23, 2006
Promise not to tell ?
Futons: They are a bed - and a sofa. One piece of furniture, 2 uses. Magic !
Well maybe not.
The secret is they are actually crap as beds, AND crap as sofas.
Which must be fairly hard to do - to design something that COULD, and SHOULD be two things, but is actually useless as either.
Thursday, April 20, 2006
Are you the sort of chappie who works out?
Who works out a LOT ?
But you know that its worth it, as it makes you look soooo gooood...?
Good enough to make it worth your while to shave your chest ?
Good enough that you feel that Anna Kournikova would fancy you - if you met her?
In fact, so sure of this that you think its only sensible to get in some practice at schmoozings the lovely Russian ladies ..... just so you are ready when she next wanders down your street ?
And because you are so sure, so you see no shame in "practicing" your "russian" (ahem) with those east european ladies who are always hanging around the bar of you local 5-star hotel ?
If this is the kind of cool sophisticated guy you are, we have just the item of clothing for you.
Ideal for showing off those lovely shaven pecs !
Friday, April 14, 2006
Frantic doesn't even begin to cover it.
I look out of the window to my left, and standing on the (narrow) pavement is a sheep. I've seen goats, I've seen cows, I've even seen elephants in cities in India - but they were unlike this sheep in one important respect. They were all dusty brown - naturally, or from pollution. Step outside in Mumbai and you need a shower. Walk down the street and you are looking for a dry cleaners before they will let you back in the hotel.
But this was a clean, white, totally spotless sheep. Freshly minted, or straight out of a Sheep Laundry that clearly must be nearby...Strange indeed.
So, this clean white sheep is stood there, head down, calmly waiting on the pavement as traffic flies past beeping and honking, spewing out poison only a couple of feet away.
And our clean sheep is untethered. It is just standing there calmly next to this guy, for all the world like a well trained dog next to its master.
And it's standing underneath a sign for a Vegetarian restarant - in fact, they are both just outside, and the guy seems to be chatting to someone who works there. So I think - is the sheep waiting to go in, or are the owners considering a change of culinary strategy....?
But then this thought is interrupted with the screech of brakes and a smash of glass, as over to my right there's obviously been a collision.
Everyone on the pavement looks up and across in surprise. The people in the restarant look up in surprise. The f-ing sheep looks up - and now I know what the expression is on the face of a startled urban sheep !
I can see - as can the sheep - that a bus has bumped into the rear lights of a car at the traffic lights.
From the state of cars in Mumbai, this is clearly not an unusual occurrence. In fact it might be that some models leave the factory only after at least one light has been smashed and 3 scrapes and a dent added to either side of the car.
But the driver of this car is not that calm.
He gets out of his car and starts berating the bus driver.
Who looks down on him from 12 feet up in the air, bemused, and does nothing.
So our man goes to his boot (trunk), opens it up and then gets out a hammer and starts smashing up the front of the bus!!
Cue arrival of Police, cue instant crowd.....cue sheeps attention is still 100% on this pnenomenon....
...and then the lights change and away we go....!
Thursday, April 13, 2006
Tuesday, March 28, 2006
Despite the huge populaity of womens soccer in Mexico, and the massive crowds regularly attending matches for their championship-winning mens team, Club America Águilas (Eagles) - had always found it difficult to persuade players to join their womens team.
Thursday, March 23, 2006
And bear in mind this is a Lakeland Exclusive - so you will not be able to find this anywhere else;
Not in the shops
Not in any other Catalogue
Not on the Internet (apart from from Lakelands own site)
Only people who buy from Lakeland Plastics will be in the know about this wonderful and life (and shirt) saving invention.
(plus postage and packing)
Don't let me keep you
Monday, March 20, 2006
Thursday, March 16, 2006
Hold The Front Page!
You don't want to pay £15.99 to slice your bread evenly?
But, secretly you wish you could sometimes cut bread (and Melba Toast) that little bit more neatly ?
Step right up.
Lakeland Plastics have just the thing for you !
Yes, Welcome to The "Adjust-a-Slice"
Undercutting the previous item by a massive £10.04 (enough for several loaves of unsliced bread on which to practice) this more basic model still achieves everything that you woudl wish for from a bread slice size management tool.
It even has a handy picture to show you how admirably it manages to deliver success with the two key (in fact, lets go the whole hog and say "classic") bread sizes
Both "thin" AND "thick"
And, best of all, it can even be used for Cold Meats !!
Proividing extra functionality unseen in the "Even Slice" - all at a fraction of the cost!
Why wait any longer?
Picket yoru local Tesco, Walmart of Sainsburys now and demand the end of useless investment in the provision of sliced bread (contributing to global warming no doubt).
The Adjust-a-Slice is here to save us all !
Sunday, March 12, 2006
1622: GOAL Arsenal 1-0 Liverpool. Arsenal go ahead through a magnificent Thierry Henry strike. Cesc Fabregas splits the Liverpool defence leaving Henry to bend a delightful curler round Jose Reina.
Here we see Henri just after unleashing a delightful curler.
He certainly seems to have plenty of "Va-Va-poo"
Friday, March 10, 2006
TV is now a science.
Do the research, hold the focus groups, target the right demographic and you have a sure-fire, advertiser friendly hit on your hands.
But in a multi-channel universe, TV producers are finding it harder to come up with the blockbuster, "must watch" format capable of bringing together the many and varied special interest groups into one advertiser-friendly format.
So, with science now being applied, and commercial pressure rising, how long until we see the perfect catch-all TV programme, capable of attracting viewers from every part of the socio-economic and demographic spectrum?
Not too long
And it will be something like this....
A programme about a detective who is investigating a serial killer stalking a group of celebrity man eating Nazi dinosaur sharks whilst they are being forced to live together in an Egyptian Pyramid (that is getting a makeover from Jeremy Clarkson) as part of the preparation for a public-voted pop-singing competition that will be held at half time during a football match on a desert island.
Coming to a Screen near you soon....
tv pic nicked shamelessly from the fabulous http://www.vintagetvsets.com/
Friday, March 03, 2006
Or, to be more precise, provides many pictures of extending telescopic low-hanging-fruit-picking implements with easy twist off attachments suitable for harvesting a range of soft and semi-soft fruit from your garden or orchard (no more stretching on potentially unsafe ladders for you, Sir)
The latest edition includes this ever useful device for the terminally incompetent and cack-handed idiot who wishes to be parted from their money.
Yes, your life has been incomplete without "Even Slice", a £15.99 oversized and unattractive piece of polypropylene (always a stylish delight in any kitchen) equipment to solve that life-impairing problem of occasionally cutting a load of bread into slightly uneven slices.
Now you can safely and neatly cut bread ....into 6 thicknesses. Which is in itself surely risky, as this amount of slice-thickness choice on the bread-cutting front could potentially paralyze some of the more feeble-minded purchasers (a category into which I suspect a significant number of the puchasers will in fact fall) into catatonic indecision, leading to potential stale bread syndrome, malnutrition and even (in extreme cases) death? It is perhaps for this very reason that this is not a product on offer in the more litigious US market.
It promises "Even Melba Toast".
But what does that mean? That some advertising copywriter felt it important to make special mention that this excellent device can be used to avoid the unspeakable horrors of "UNeven" Melba toast?
Or that "even" is here being used to mean "in addition to". In case people may have been reading it thinking "I can see how that would certainly be a great boon in my quest to slice my bread neatly, evenly and consistently. But I am not sure from the writeup provided that it would function equally effectively in slicing bread neatly, evenly and consistently if I planned to then turn that same bread into Melba Toast. But a-ha! There is special mention of its Melba Toast slicing prowess! I am reassured! My Fears are allayed ! Brenda - poass me the phone and my credit card right away, I wish to place an order for this wonderous device!"
In one further masterstroke of the copywriters art, and Lakeland so elegantly puts it, "the best thing since sliced bread is unsliced bread".
But lets face it, thats not strictly true is it? If you wish to eat bread, having it sliced is usually (except in the case of maybe naan breadd?) an improvement on its unsliced state. In fact, slicing bread is a fairly key part of the "eating bread" process.
On reflection, to buy a bread-slicing product (a £15.99 bread slicing product at that) from someone who thinks that "unsliced" bread is something that has been invented "since" sliced bread, and is also "the best thing since sliced bread" rather than simply "a state bread is in before you slice it" is simply asking for trouble.But don't let me stop you buying it....
Thursday, March 02, 2006
Rizla Teeth vs Neena Nannah
Vote Now !
Wednesday, March 01, 2006
On any given night its almost impossible to find a half-decent gritty police drama about a slightly maverick detective with a quirky habit, or a programme about man-eating sharks because our TV screens are now full of ..
So, as is the law with all "trends", how long until some young, wannabe luvvy but sadly misguided vicar from an inner city parish in the Midlands or North of England latches onto this phenomenon and looks to see how he can harness the cultural zeitgeist to generate increased church attendance from the "yoof" of today?
This would mean that the Trinity of The Father, Son & Holy Ghost gets replaced by "The Jury".
Those who die and go to heaven are introduced by a vaguely familiar St Peter (who you can't help feeling isn't quite as good as Ant & Dec would have been be at this whole "welcome to the Kingdom of Heaven" malarkey) to The Jury.
The Jury consists of a bland non-committal older God who tries in vain to strike a balance between a relentlessly positive middle-aged over-botoxed female Jesus, and a camp, bitchy yet brutally honest Holy Ghost who's every utterance is greeted by a chorus of boos from the watching choir of Chav-angels with Burberry harps who have been bussed in to provide a hooting Springer-style audience.
For those who pass the initial Jury, its not over - there is 12 more weeks of waiting whilst your numbers are slowly whittled down by a weekly global pray-in, on the basis of how many good deeds and how few sins you can commit - live, in front of a studio audience - whilst your family and friends all print up t-shirts with your dead yet peaceful face on it
And for those who go to hell, a dreadful, terrible fate awaits. An interview on the sofa on ITV2 with Mark Durden Smith and a 2 week window of opportunity to be seen in Heat Magazine.
Saturday, February 25, 2006
The above story appeared in the "work" supplement of todays Guardian .
However the article also contained the rather shocking and disgusting information contained below
More are "in the pipeline"
Well, I guess thats a logical place to find them.... I suppose..?
But, does it imply there is a sewage pipleline connecting Britain and Germany? If so, why have we not heard of it before? Makes the Channel Tunnel not seem quite such an impressive feat of engineering doesn't it?
A cursory Google search fails to reveal that the "Poo Pipeline" was part of some secret British Boffins whizz-bang scheme during WW2 - not quite as famous as the bouncing bomb or cracking the Enigma codes (and not quite as suitable for adaption into a film) but still a possible explanation ?
And, most importantly, which way does the Poo flow ? Is the pipeline actually being used to export Teutonic Turds to England as part of some evil European Union Conspiracy Theory ? Or is the flow the other way? Is there a hyper-efficient German Poo-processing system that Britain is paying fortunes to outsource our sewage treatment requirements to?
As the engineers are coming here, the first option seems most likley. Alert The Sun! Britain is being sent the overspill from the German Poo Mountain, fuelled by excessive intake of cabbage and sausages! And now, in an ironic twist, German sewage engineers are being smuggled into the UK country to deal with their own poo!!
However, one this is sure - any job that requires you to commute from Germany to England via a secret sub-sea WW2 vintage pipeline full of Bratwurst-fuelled poops certainly makes a job in sales not seem quite as bad ....
A team of renowned clinicians, anatomists, and basic scientists have incorporated all of the newest anatomical knowledge into the latest (39th) edition, reorganized it by body region to parallel clinical practic and added many new surface anatomy, radiologic anatomy, and microanatomy images to complement the exquisite artwork that the book is known for.
The result is the world's definitive source on human anatomy.
So why does it need an online weekly
Are these eminent scientists still discovering new organs, limbs and body parts?
And doing so on a WEEKLY BASIS ????
"Doh - 39 editions since 1858, and I've just realised that we have totally missed the right leg!"
" Gadzooks Henry - you are right - lucky for us, it seems that no-one has noticed!"
"Well, better get it into the next online weekly update - phew, what a narrow escape!"
Tuesday, February 21, 2006
Crab, Scallops, Prawns - yes, I can accept them as "Fresh Local Seafood"
Eels - so positively British it makes you want to roll up your trousers and put a hankie on your head
Shark - maybe. Dogfish (known also as "Huss" or "Rock Salmon") is technically a member of the shark family I suppose.
Tuna - unlikley but possible.
Swordfish - Naaaah. There is no current record for swordfish being caught in British waters, but clearly that needs updating. Presumably they are all being hooked and eaten in Bognor Regis before their weights are recorded and sent to the folks at Anglers Times.
I suggest we all send in this evidence to their current collator of fish records to correct this anomaly :firstname.lastname@example.org
Monday, February 13, 2006
It's always useful to know exactly what sort of establishment you are walking into.
Especially if you are in a hurry for alcoholic refreshment.
As Radiohead say, No Surprises.
Friday, February 10, 2006
2. I am confident my future career will not involve changing my name and working as a policeman and/or a nurse/doctor and moving to either Holby City or London's Sun Hill district.
3. Were I to inexplicably disappear for several months, my friends might notice...
3.a. .....especially if it were during the pantomine season.
4. I watch TV.
5. I occasionally express opinions about things in the news.
6. I have never been involved in a car accident in which any of the vehicles involved have burst spectacuarly into flame.
7. When I am in a public space, I can almost always see at least 10 people I do not know or recognise.
8. If something exciting is clearly immenently going to happen to me, I rarely experience a 2-3 day delay until it does...
8.a. ....and it is never accompanied or preceeded immediately by strangely familiar music.
9. I can consult the weather forecast in todays paper and be reasonably confident it will be correct.
10. In my experience, snow at Christmas is not a guaranteed phenomenon
Monday, February 06, 2006
Always useful when the hotel phone has been designed and built by the fiendishly clever Japanese telecomms industry to give valued guests "one-button" access to the most important services on offer in the establishment.
Some ergonomics expert has clearly calculated that "massage" is more used than "outside line". After all, havent we all been in a hotel and suddenly needed a massage so urgently you simply do not have time to read the hotel phone directory and dial a 3 digit number?
Hopefully not too many accidents happen by pressing the adjacent buttons....
Saturday, February 04, 2006
Maybe they can get together with the creators of Menopause The Musical and create a musical Kryptonite capable of reducing the hardiest Lloyd-Webber or Mackintosh to juddering wrecks? ...?
Thursday, February 02, 2006
1. Electric toothbrushes
3. Your home city's metro & bus system
Things that don't have instructions, but could do with them:
1. Turkey-size tinfoil (shiny side in, or out?)
2. Playing Cards
3. Hotel room showers (especially in America)
4. un-filleted fish served in restaurants
5. Buses abroad
Things that do have instructions, but they are never quite good enough to help you achieve what you want to do..
1. Metro systems abroad
2. Someone else's hi-fi
3. Tins of paint
Please feel free to add any more you can think of...
Tuesday, January 31, 2006
Monday, January 30, 2006
With the demise of the nationalised railway system in the UK, the Tube is one of the last refuges for manically barnetted individualists.
Double-cover supervisors, platform staff, Ticket Office personnel, and even drivers, all seem to have bizzarre hairstyles as a condition of employment
If many of these people lose their jobs, what will become of them?
Surely they cant ALL become Postmen ???
Friday, January 27, 2006
Wednesday, January 25, 2006
I can understand Duty Free - cheap fags and booze, makes sense.
Bookshops, Newsagents - yes, something to read on the plane.
Souvenir shops selling t-shirts and mugs tastefully displaying skylines and maps of wherever you are leaving - yup, you forgot to buy that present for a loved one, but here is your salvation.
Sunglasses Hut - big tick!
World of Cameras? - yep, it fits.
But Luggage shops? Who decided they would be a good idea?
I can understand Chemists - "oops, I forgot to pack the aspirin", or "I need some new shaving gel".
"Oh - I've been carrying this big bundle of clothes around like a dork - I just knew I had forgotten something...",
"Hmmm - I did think it was a little weird how strangers kept chasing me and then handing me odd socks and bits of my own underwear"
"Well, she said do you have any cases to check in - I should have realised she meant me to check in their CONTENTS as well !"
Friday, January 20, 2006
From the FAQ at http://www.bombaysapphire.com/Default.aspx
Q: "Where is the BOMBAY SAPPHIRE distillery located?"
A: "BOMBAY SAPPHIRE is distilled in Cheshire in the north of England"
Maybe the closure of the Boddingtons brewery was actually because brewing has now been outsourced to Hyderabad...?
Friday, January 13, 2006
More drugs, quicker funds promised at bird flu talks
Fri Jan 13, 2006 3:00 PM GMT
The above story appeared on the Reuters news board today.
Are YOU not concerned that the scientists attending the world congress on this threat are all apparently taking drugs - and openly demanding more "fixes" - during the conference ?
Be very afraid.
And then visit an all night petrol station for some Monster Munch.
And a Kit-Kat.
(preferrably the orange special edition one)
After all, who would want to continue smoking once they had been informed that smoking results in blocked arteries, can provoke cardiac attacks ............. and worst of all, apparently also causes severe flatulence?
(unless this is a side effect only caused by menthol cigarettes?)