Thursday, June 28, 2007

Do you remember, dear, that time I was in Africa? I forget which country but it was one of the darker ones - bones through their noses, inflation at a billion percent, arbitrary state borders and an irrational hatred of the white man, you know, the full-on limbo-dancing voodoo-and-missionary stew. We were out there doing important zoological research, hunting for the last of the lost dinosauruses, complete with Italian documentary crew and all. We thought it would make our fames and fortunes, so you gave me your modified elephant gun and I took my small-bore bazooka, though of course I checked it in on the flight. I tried to hire a family of natives to assist but it turned into such a bureaucratic nightmare that I was forced to simply buy them outright instead. I had the full intention of probably setting them free or maybe selling them back at a profit, if one was to be made - in which case I could have shared the money with them. At the very least, I would have taken them back at the end of the trip and got my money back, even if I had to break some bones and call it defective goods. Just like with Argos, really. Anyway, it's gilt-edged the prestige they got working for us, they could have commanded a much higher price for their indentured servitude after that. If only they'd have lived. Besides, it was a politically necessary move to throw some cash around the place, having accidentally killed one of their gods during a spot of grenade practice. That's how you make friends in these dark holes - by talking their language. Let them know who's equal, you see. But of course with their President for Life personally welcoming me at the airport with the now traditional gesture of open arms trading, I only had to give him the cheap Russian knock-offs that fell off the back of a serf that i'd got for part exchange in a deal for the franchise rights to the chain of Chernobyl Fried Chicken stores (slogans: "13 finger-licking good", "the other green-coloured chicken from Kiev", "a half-life at half-price") that I'd won in a poker game along with half a million dollars worth of breast enhancement surgery and a crateload of Mogwai (which turned out to be just the one grumpy little critter with a 2 litre bottle of San Pellegrino). If you recall, I thought I'd been saddled with a 3 bob groat, a 10-bob zloty, a fool's florin, a siamese dog god, a jelly fist, a chinaman's kneecap, a metric pound of pasteurised bumcheese etc. But you suggested combining the two, et voila! A 500 strong troupe of fat-knockered hula-dancing Chinese fairie folk, a nice little revenue stream for me now that they pay for themselves (with a little extra work on the side, well, in the back) closing Les Folies Barbares every night except Frunday. I hear they've taken Clermont-Ferrand by storm, absolutely painting the town red after midnight. FYI, I saved twenty grand of the surgery money to get Mother's fat arse cut down to size, with the excess currently being sculpted into a larger-than-lifesize marbled-meat impression of me at birth, which may act as the centrepiece to the Grand Vizier's Garden Party this Springtember. His Royal Fanciness requested a live Matryoshka troupe but I told him, the last group still in existence died out due to a fungal infection passed on by Fludmilla, the teenage tearaway of the family and a registered slut. Near as hell decimated the Imperial Navy at Omsk, which went in no small part to our famous victory at Crimea. You never knew because I kept it from you but this coincided with a general downturn in my fortunes, having invested heavily in Gravy for Gays Inc. So when the Spunk Bubble burst, I was left with little more than egg-white over my face. I had to sell my controlling stock in the Greek Orthodox Church and a Kidney. Patriarch Kleftikos was a happy man but Archbishop Dialysis was most certainly not. I also sold my Echidna. And my Hare. And my Hart. And my Cock. And both my Bullocks. I still miss them. If I hadn't won a contract with the German Government to print their banknotes during the great economic boom of 1929-33, I might still be wanking and crying for coins and trinkets on the great cobbled streets of Covent Garden, alond with Father who, to the best of my knowledge, is still there, running a cartel of wank-cryers - or is it cry-wankers? please consult the Oxford with you dear? - who pay him a portion of their takings for the best spots where they might ply their trade and more besides for the curious tourists, the sympathetic and the out-of-town school trips. Give Father credit, when he started they said it would never work. And when it worked, they said would be just a flash in the pan. But now, 3 weeks later and he's still going strong. A lot of tears have flowed over those ever-smoothening cobblestones, some salty, some milky, and he's turned it into an internationl tourist spot to rival Speakers' Corner, The Tower of London and that grassy verge in Hyde Park where the Queen Mother once took a golden shit. The story goes she was out riding one morning and got caught short so, game old bird that she was, rather than have her equerry open him mouth for her to lay a steaming fat one in, as was customary in that family's middle-class German heritage - one only needs to watch 1000's of hours of that country's most extreme pornography to understand that quickly - she hiked up her skirts, removed her anal chastity belt and dumped out a large nugger of purest goldenry. An alchemical miracle that old girl, many would accuse her of swallowing the Philosopher's Stone, though she swore it was just the gin and vendettas. Some say it was encrusted with jewels and the Royal Seal itself, before being taken away by a footman and chopped up into bite-size lumps, as with any normal, pooey Royal Shit, and then distributed among the poor, again, as with any normal Royal Shit. Another theory has it that it was divided into two roughly equal pieces which were then rushed by steam train to the helicopter pad, where one was flown to the Diocese of Canterbury and one to the Diocese of York. The respective Archbishops then 'took' their portions as Holy Communion and that's why the Anglican Church is in such a good state as it is today. Incidentally, I have received an invitation to their wedding and must think of a gift. As you know, the only person of sufficient stature in the good old Church of E to officiate the union between these two lovebirds is the Queen herself - and she says she's busy opening a Bingo hall in Riyadh that weekend. There's also the thorny theological issue of what happens when a Most Reverend marries a Very Reverend, and although biologically impossible, if they were to have a childling, would said progeny not be more senior than the Crown itself? This is not simply idle speculation, though it's that too. For one thing, we may someday see a female Archbishop, though quite why the Almighty may seek to test us in this baptism of fiery menstrual blood and modernity i do not know. Perhaps to show the flesh-eating, blood-drinking St Peterites of Rome just how silly they look not being able to fuck eachother. And for another, if any pair of fine, upstanding Christian males are going to conceive a little miracle, it's going to be the Very and the Most Reverends, Mr And Mr Archbishop themselves. If Mary can conceive Jesus Christ himself without getting some much as a fingerfuck, it should be no problem for one of the two churchmen to poo out a minor Saint after what im reliably informed is an absolutely rock-solid dicking. Like most of these seemingly intractable issues in life, I find playing out all the consequences in theory to be the best way towards resolution. To that end, I'm wondering if you know where my pack of Top Trumps Bishops and Cardinals is please? Incidentally, I don't want to worry you but I've been visiting a certain somone who shall remain nameless, every wednesday after he's done answering Prime Minister's Question Time, to play a round or 80 of Top Trumps Nuclear War. I shall try and encode a message in this letter that only you will get, ok? It will be subtle and come without warning, I warn you. So, while you're looking for my cards, I suppose you might want to grab Top Trumps Build A Nuclear Bunker and Trivial Pursuit Stockpile Food and Medical Supplies edition, because I ran across this idea the other day, when I was out running, and I ran and I ran and I ran until I saw our friend Izzy Gunnagh-Startagh-Waugh nodding sagely as he packed all his wife and kids and all his belongings into lead-lined suitcases to be shipped off to somewhere very far away that rhymes with Zoo Kneeland. But fate's a funny thing, though not funny ha-ha. So maybe I'd say I'll see you there, under the Ploopla tree, where the orange-foot dudo do roam.


Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Sunday Morning, 8am, Montreal - Famous Rental Car Firm*

-Good morning, I've come to pick up my Hyundai Average 1.1 which I have booked for two days at quite a reasonable rate I believe

"Certainly Sir. Let me see now, one Economy Car at two days quite reasonable rate, plus unreasonable federal tax and inexplicable, additional Quebec tax, equals not so reasonable after all please - do you want car insurance with that?"

-Oh I suppose I do actually

"Great. That'll be exorbitant at two days, but it is necessary. Would you like to pay for the excess waiver should you need to use your insurance? It's quite ridiculous, especially at two days"

-Hmm, I think I'll take my chances thanks. I'm not planning on crashing or anything. This does cover medical bills and the like, right?

"I'm afraid not sir. It's just for the car. You'll be wanting our slap-in-face pricey medical insurance, which, let's see, at two days per person works out to be... a little over a sickening shock"

-Ok, wow, so... how much is that overall, then?

(She tots up the figures on a calculator)

"In total, that comes to a-helluva-lot-more-than-you-budgeted-for and then-some. Will you be paying by Credit Card sir?"

-There'd better not be a fucking charge for that, bitch

"No indeed sir. And it's a very good job this conversation is largely reconstructed from memory, or i'd have slapped you if you'd actually called me that, you honky kike"

And she'd be right, too. But here's the point of this all...

"Anyway, Sir, I can see that we're all out of our basic Economy model Hyundai, so if it's ok with you we'll have to give you something a little better, at no extra charge of course"

-Oh, sure. At no extra charge? Ok, I'm very interested in whatever you can give me

"How about a Ford Mustang GT? Does that sound good?"

At which point a little slither of pure boyhood fantasy joyrides up my spine, does a couple of doughnut turns around my head and then settles down for a purr in my chest where it gently cups my beating heart and begins to whisper soft but outrageous promises to drive to San Francisco immediately and chase down some bad guys

I'm no car man, to be honest, though as a child I was for a time obsessed with sports cars and speed in general. I am still able to summon up plenty of irrelevant statistics about fast cars from the 1970's and if anyone wants to let me ride their Panther Kallista or De Tomaso Pantera, get in touch and i'll blow you. Of course, these were all European and very sophisticated looking ladies indeed. The only American speed machines I considered worth knowing were the rocket-powered, land-speed-record-breaking bastard machines that ex-Air Force people and backroom-based hicks would build and race across salt flats. But in the last few weeks i've been noticing this big, brassy car with the wild horse on the front grill and thinking how god damned attractive it looks (although initially it's always 'ooh, an Aston Martin...oh..')

And then I see the car and by the time I've walked up close to it, I've damn near put a dent in the driver's door from my erection. Somehow, some way, with no sage advice to the contrary, this nice young lady had lent me, a state-certified ADHD suffering nervous, suicidal lunatic a fucking wild beast that does 0-60 in under 5 seconds (on an automatic gearbox, dont forget) and demands to be ridden at its top speed of 147 miles an hour.

So I yielded; frequently, gleefully, illegally.

It's difficult to liken the power you feel behind the wheel, or more accurately on top of the accelerator, to anything else (except maybe for when lifting one's magic sword aloft and invoking the Power of Grayskull). But it's easy to understand why a certain country of doodledandys find themselves going out with regularity to perform the occasional aggressive takeover of an asset-rich but poorly-managed foreign corporation, or "country" if you're gonna be picky. Most Europeans pay between 1 1/2 and 2 1/2 times what Americans do and most of our cars dont do a pathetic 17mpg or 25 on the highway (I filled up both days I had it and it was, embarrassingly, dirt cheap). I think successive governments have had to keep the price of gas ridiculously low to avoid serious social unrest. That and making sure they are easily distracted by everything their culture has got to offer.

*I haven't, obviously, been employed by Ford or Famous Rental Car Firm (aka Fuck Me 'Til It Hertz) to promote their products but if anyone reading this from either of these firms wants to give me some money that would be ok. I will happily promote your stuff in the guise of blogposts to all 27 or so readers I get everyday. And if you pay me double, I will stop promoting your stuff.

Q. Lalo or Serge? Lalo or Serge?

A. Lalo and Serge


Thursday, June 21, 2007

So I think i've figured out how to tell the maturity of any given town or city by applying a very special formula that I discovered the other day whilst walking past an unaffiliated gaggle of pretend young ruffians loitering without intent outside a typical Montreal boutique selling fancy and dandy to the classes of the middle and above. I should point out that if this post comes across as a little snobbish, elitist or downright misanthropic, I have at least achieved something.

The formula is quite simple, really:

(NFB/M2x100) /(NTT/M2x100) = SC

Or, Number of Fancy Boutiques per square mile divided by Number of Tupac T-shirts worn or for sale per square mile = how Shit your City is.

Montreal has a SC factor of almost , since I have yet to find a single Tupac T-shirt in this city. It is, I suppose, an ideal place to live.

Here's a shop not far from where I live that sells nothing but mushrooms. Actually that's not strictly true, for it sells mushroom-related products, finery, fancy and dreams. I have yet to go in, only for the simple reason that I have promised myself to enter and ask 'Do you sell mushrooms?' and I don't think I quite have the sufficient chutzpah to do it yet.
Here's a shop not far from where I live that sells nothing but tomatoes. Actually that's not strictly true...etc etc
Tell me, how does this shop survive? Do you find yourself wanting an edible arrangement of a morning and then thank the lord you can just pop in to this shop for the solution? How many people need to want this to make a viable business? Do you even regularly desire non-edible arrangements, say of flowers or lego and the like - and then bring it home from your regular non-edible arrangers and think to yourself 'No, this isn't good enough. It must taste of something too. I want to eat it'? And anyway, when do you eat an edible arrangement? What is the timeframe here - do you bring it home, sit it on the windowsill and then start picking at it? Fucking hell, I sound like Jerry Seinfeld.


Monday, June 18, 2007

Yes, Montreal certainly does have its fair share of 'specialist' shops


Friday, June 15, 2007

Why I love using Western Union: they make you ask a secret question which only the recipient will know the answer to. In this case, I chose 'What is your middle name?'. Read on for the 'answer'...

Rentally-challenged Dublin Pal: okay. rents paid

Me: lovely. did you get asked the question?

Rentally-challenged Dublin Pal: yes. curse you

Me: !!

Rentally-challenged Dublin Pal: i got the russian girl. i knew i'd get the russian girl

Me: EXCELLENT! TELL ME ! TELL ME HOW IT WENT! (I shoulda gone for ‘Baba Yaga’)

Rentally-challenged Dublin Pal: i show my passport, thinking, I won't need the question if i have id…but, lo… and with 20 people in the queue behind Me

Me: !

I am already pissing myself

Rentally-challenged Dublin Pal: she says... eet eess not on your passport?

Me: oh fuck!

Rentally-challenged Dublin Pal: joo muss speel eet



i hope you got it right

Rentally-challenged Dublin Pal: thank Christ, she couldn't see the answer!

Me: oh?

Rentally-challenged Dublin Pal: it's a blind entry (like a web passport)

Me: right

Rentally-challenged Dublin Pal: so here's Me thinking "is it rumple or rumpel"?

"the bank closes in 10 minutes..."

Me: fuck. i did text you the spelling. i shoulda said

Rentally-challenged Dublin Pal: true. nah, alls well...you got value for money

Me: so you said it, right? and she looked how, exactly?

Rentally-challenged Dublin Pal: of course... but it might as well have been "charles" for this girl. "ah jes. my couseen iss called Rumplestiltskeen"

Me: im so happy

Rentally-challenged Dublin Pal: and i can start breathing again. until next month

Me: indeed. what you need to do, i think, to avoid being short of money every month, is get some straw. and a spinning wheel

Rentally-challenged Dublin Pal: invest in gold thread futures

"boy with magical goose done for insider trading"

My landlord last month, as people are milling round my apartment with a view to renting, asks me one of his classic out-of-the-fucking-blue questions that I love. He's taken a shine to me, and I to him, despite the fact that i almost burnt to death in his property because he doesn't know how to put a handle on a door. So, apropos of zero, he comes out with...

"Hey, you like Chinese Girl?" (and actually, I rarely do. Not my usual type)

-Er... I... like...all...kinds of girls, Ricky (his Anglicised name, obviously)

"I have neice in Shanghai, you wanna meet her? She really nice girl. Young, pretty, good looking, very nice girl"

-Oh! Im...really... flattered, Ricky. Thanks. But...uh...I have a girlfriend.


-Yes, i'm afraid I do.

"you SURE you have girlfriend?"

-yes, im pretty sure, Ricky

"but my neice, she such a nice girl and you such a nice guy, best tenant ever, i think you hit off big time"

-Ricky, thanks so much for thinking of me (and i am really touched by this, even though it's probably shady as fuck) but I really do have a girlfriend

And he literally clutches his head with his hands and says, again, "OH NO! Are you SURE?"


Sunday, June 10, 2007

Sorry, did you say Jeff Buckley's dead?

-Yes, yes I did

Well who's this then?

(press play, then quickly shut your eyes for a minute if you want to take the true Buckley challenge)

She's Every Woman

Add to My Profile | More Videos

Im not saying it's true...

"The reason Paris Hilton got sent back to jail is because there was nowhere on her body discreet enough to put an electronic tag"

...But im not saying it's false either

A beautifully written article about the modest rise in coverage of Atheism in the American media reminds me of something I've been hearing a lot recently:

Anti-religious campaigners like Hitchens will say that we'd be better off without Religion which, on balance, has caused more death and misery for more people than anything else. To counter this, proponents of religion will argue that the two biggest genocides of the twentieth century were engineered by Atheist regimes. For example..

The fact is that while religious wars have been fought for centuries, militant atheism has slaughtered more people than religious zealots ever have. The greatest mass murders in history have been committed not by Christians but by Communists Joseph Stalin and Mao Tse Tung. More than 100 million have died at the hands of these militant atheists since the early 20th century.

From these good people

To which I say "Where do I fucking start?"

Doesn't this do a small disservice to, oh i dont know, the 6 million Jews, Gypsys and other undesirables to the Nazis, not unknown evildoers and yet not avowed atheists as far as i'm aware? Twisters of Christianity, for sure, but believers nevertheless. Is it really acceptable to play the numbers game as the basis for "who's more evil"? Apparently every life isn't sacred - or at least morally equivalent to every other life, or they wouldn't quibble over the number killed in the Crusades, the Spanish Inquisition and the Salem Witch Trials. It opens up the old debate about sacrificing the few for the many but in less conditional terms.

But what really confuses me about this argument is simply that both Communist regimes had far more in common with religious movements than anything resembling the purely secular. They were political religions with strong cult figures in apparent total command, and also had an all-knowing, history-predicting big hairy man in the sky - Karl Marx in this case, no less revered than God and Son as a saviour, an emancipator, a reliable father-figure.

When there is no separation between Church and State, they obviously become one. But in the cases where there is no Church at all, it seems that the State becomes the de facto Church. So you either (appear to) buy in wholeheartedly or you get purged, culturally revolutionised, re-educated, year-zero'd, gulag'd or just plain killed.

And in both cases, of war-catalysing Religion and industrially-genocidal Communism, neither of them have absolutely anything to do with god.


Saturday, June 09, 2007

the determinedly deep brown, mahogany funk ripples through bass space, a trebled triple throb of pulsing lime lights across the blacquamarine horizon of an emptiness, a fragile space that used to be silence, something vast and empty of infinite, unrealised potential. And then, from the unexpected, a soft suggestion of sound becomes a full-blown, brazen commitment to shake out a rigid rhythmic ribbon of bouncing, punchy stabs of pure colour, robust trembles in a lower register between liquidity and solidity, a rhizomatic slink, a fretted-thing in flight, a riff so urgent, so desperate for expression, so troubled by its uniqueness it never rests, choosing the widening spiral of renewal for self-validation. It struggles to be free, for where could it go that isn't better than where it just was right now?
God I love Snow Patrol's new single. It's really great. The words mean so much. The music's so original. Sound of the summer. All of Britain's dancing to it, i'm sure.

This, however, is a piece of shit. Determinedly deep brown, mahogany shit


Thursday, June 07, 2007

It's ugly, expensive, crowded, the rest of the country doesn't like it and prominent people are paid to go on about how great it is.

So maybe it is a perfect logo.


Wednesday, June 06, 2007

I love posts that write themselves. Thanks to Digitalspy
Emily: (referring to Charley dancing/pushing her hips forward) You pushing it out you nigger.
Nicky: (shocked laughter) Em, I can't believe you said that.
Charley: You are in trouble.
Emily: Don't make a big thing out of it then. I was joking.
Charley: I know you were... but that's some serious shit, sorry.
Emily: Why?
Charley: Oh my god. I'm not even saying it.
Nicky: Just don't talk about it anymore.
Emily: I was joking
Charley: Do you know how many viewers would watch that?
Nicky: Okay, don't make a big deal out of it.
Charley: Fancy you saying that. I can't believe you said that.
Emily: Somebody has already used that word in this house.
Charley: No way. (Pause) Yeah, me. I'm a nigger.

Nicky laughs.

Charley: I am one. Fancy you saying it. I know maybe you see it in a rap song. Maybe you and your friends sit there saying it.
Emily: I'm friendly with plenty of black people.
Nicky: And you call them niggers?
Emily: Yeah and they call me niggers. They call me wiggers as well.
Nicky: I'm quite shocked.
Charley: I'm fucking in shock.
Emily: It's not a big deal though is it?
Charley: Not for us it ain't. Fuck me.

Emily says she was reading from the age of two and gives herself 10 out of 10 for intelligence. This is all part of her very honest attitude to life, and she says “honesty gets me into trouble – teachers hated me for being so honest. Friends like me for being honest. I expect honesty back”.

Politically, she considers herself to be right wing and will be voting Conservative in the next election.


Monday, June 04, 2007

"This is the vision at the very heart of our brand," said London 2012 organising committee chairman Seb Coe.

"It will define the venues we build and the Games we hold and act as a reminder of our promise to use the Olympic spirit to inspire everyone and reach out to young people around the world.

"It is an invitation to take part and be involved.

"We will host a Games where everyone is invited to join in because they are inspired by the Games to either take part in the many sports, cultural, educational and community events leading up to 2012 or they will be inspired to achieve personal goals."

"It's not a logo, it's a brand that will take us forward for the next five years," he told BBC Five Live.

"It won't be to be eveybody's taste immediately but it's a brand that we genuinely believe can be a hard working brand which builds on pretty much everything we said in Singapore about reaching out and engaging young people, which is where our challenge is over the next five years.

"If we don't that, then frankly the whole project is unsustainable."

Prime Minister Tony Blair said: "We want London 2012 not just to be about elite sporting success.

"When people see the new brand, we want them to be inspired to make a positive change in their life.

"London 2012 will be a great sporting summer but will also allow Britain to showcase itself to the world."

International Olympic Committee President Jacques Rogge said: "This is a truly innovative brand logo that graphically captures the essence of the London 2012 Olympic Games - namely to inspire young people around the world through sport and the Olympic values.

"Each edition of the Olympic Games brings its own flavour and touch to what is now well over a century of modern Olympic history; the brand launched today by London 2012 is, I believe, an early indication of the dynamism, modernity and inclusiveness with which London 2012 will leave its Olympic mark."

Olympics Minister Tessa Jowell said: "This is an iconic brand that sums up what London 2012 is all about - an inclusive, welcoming and diverse Games that involves the whole country.

"It takes our values to the world beyond our shores, acting both as an invitation and an inspiration.

"This is not just a marketing logo, but a symbol that will become familiar, instantly recognisable and associated with our Games in so many ways during the next five years."

Well, I for one can't wait to see this amazing Olympic Logo, sorry, Brand. I am thoroughly convinced by Seb Coe, Tony Blair, Jacques Rogge and Tessa Jowell, all of whom I have a great deal of respect for and would trust with my life - especially Tony Blair. It just sounds GREAT, doesnt it?!


I think there's been a mistake somewhere


Saturday, June 02, 2007

...continued from

A pig and poke
Of rum and coke
A poke and a pig
Of a freshly-fucked fig

A Black and Tan
Of a caramel flan
A Tan and a Black
Of a spiced-lamb rack

A time and place
For boiled bouillabaise
A plaice and a thyme
Marinaded in lime

A wing and a prayer
Of "Oeufs Leo Sayer"
A prayer and a wing
Of a Singapore Sling

A cock and bull
Of a gooseberry fool
A bull and a cock
Of a hot ham hock

A wink and a smile
Of a grilled paedophile
A smile and a wink
Of a milk-poached mink

A hammer and tongs
Of crystallized dongs
The tongs and a hammer
Of a strawberry jammer

...to be concluded


Friday, June 01, 2007

It was 60 years ago today
That Sgt Pepper taught the band to play


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