Saturday, December 31, 2005

Ducky New Year!

Ducky New Year!

Picture (clicky to embiggen) from our favourite Viking temptress Misty (would), who still has far too much time on her hands.

Friday, December 30, 2005

Mirth and Woe: Dazed and Confused

Dazed and Confused

In my short period as cannon-fodder for a large nationwide tyre and exhaust retailer whose name rhymes with "Motorgay", my life as a computer operator became little more that a series of daily rituals. Get up. Drive to work. Batch up jobs. Go to lunch. Pick up a paper from the corner shop. Batch up more jobs. Go home. I lasted less than a year before I fled to the comfort of the public sector, never to venture out into the real world again.

Every day then, my lunch break would end, like clockwork, with a trip to Mr Siddiqi's newsagent round the corner for a copy of the Reading Evening Post, far too much chocolate, and on Wednesdays, the NME.

It became a routine, where I would be met by a beaming Mr Siddiqi at exactly five minutes before two with my Post folded and ready, and a selection of chocolate products ready for my perusal. Then, I would return to work, read the sports pages and photocopy the horoscopes for the mad women in accounts.

One day, not entirely feeling 100 per cent, perhaps something to do with a long mostly-liquid lunch in The Crown, I went through my routine, without really remembering very much at all, apart from the fact that the shop was more crowded than usual, and my that purchases came to several pounds more than usual, even for a Wednesday.

Following a zig-zag walk back to the office, and eschewing the tricky-looking stairs for the comfort of the lift up to the first floor, I seem to remember a rather lengthy, yet strained conversation with Mary the receptionist in which she appeared to be giving me a filthy, filthy look, or, if my luck was in, a right old come-on.

It was about quarter past two when I eventually arrived back in the computer room, the clockwork-driven nerve centre of a thrusting national rubber goods enterprise.

"What's that then?" said Wayne, my Rastafari boss, nodding at the pile of newsprint and chocolate products piled up on what passed as my desk.

"Oh, the usual," I replied, "The Post, the NME, four-five-six-um-eight Twixes and err... something else."

I had indeed bought something else.

We looked down at the desk.

Something glossy.

A magazine.

She stared back, the filthy leather-clad mare.

It was called, and I remember the words burned into my brain's shame gland to this day: "Bounce - Busty Black Birds in Bondage", and featured exactly that. Page after page of outrageously curved Afro-Caribbean ladies tied up with their own string.

And you know how it goes: you just can't get rid of porn.

"Don't worry your head," said Wayne, relieving me of five quid's worth of specialist smut and putting it in his leather satchel, "I'll handle this."

What a boss.

He still owes me a fiver.

Thursday, December 29, 2005

In weekly parts and a vote-o

In weekly parts…

It's that time of year again, when those hideous partwork magazines appear in WH Smiths for their annual airing. You know the ones - "building up in weekly parts, you too will able to build a life-size replica of the Titanic in the luxury of your own home".

The ones that come with a free binder in part one, but mysteriously disappear after part two, when the 99p cover price goes up to £5.99. The ones where the collections of Michael Caine movies suddenly start churning out the ones he made to fulfill contractual obligations. The one called "Tanks of World War II" where part seven features the septic one in your back garden. The never-ending ones about infamous murderers, Hitler and Dad's Army.

And "I Love Horses".

If only they made them more interesting. I would, for example, seriously consider spending good money on Practical Ninjitsu magazine, especially if they've got free nunchuks with issue two, and a free black face-mask with every subscription.

Coming soon then, from deScaristini Publications:

* Slimes and Moulds of the World
* The Ron Jeremy Movie Collection
* Build your own Noel Edmonds (with FREE BEARD in Part Two!)
* Knitting patterns of the Crimean War
* "Wanna be in my Gang?": The Gary Glitter Story
* Crossroads: The Complete Collection

Would I, your humble author rip you off? Send me money and find out!

2005: Arse

As we draw a veil over another year, I look back and ask myself: What have I achieved? Bugger all, that's what. OK, so I have the love of my wife and family, my emergence as a proper journalist, and finally gaining my Open University degree. But did Kirstie Allsop and Sarah Beeny accept my invitation to join the World Wrestling in a Bath of Baby Oil Federation? They did not, and on that reckoning, 2005 both sucked AND blowed.

So, let's see the year off with a vote-o for this week's final Scary Story of 2005, along with my New Year's Resolutions for 2006. Some of them might even be genuine. But which ones? Which? Which?

* The Operator: I pledge to use my powers for evil as the Old, Dark Ones intended, and will start by dropping small change into pub urinals
* Dazed and Confused: I pledge to register with the relevant authorities and cut through all that "Busy having a baby" / "My millionaire financier boyfriend won't approve" nonsense from you-know-who.
* Potman: I pledge - and tough one, this - to cut down on references to "done a poo" on this website
* Driving Test: I pledge to stop sellotaping my dog Lucy Minogue's ears together for a cheap laugh*. They don't go big on that kind of thing at Crufts.
* Now, that's Magic! : I pledge to obey my legal obligations and remain greater than ten yards from celebrity Oompa-Loompa Dale Winton.
* Dibs: I pledge to stop smoking and use Vaseline like everybody else does**
* Pickle: I pledge to get my book published this year *cough*

* Note to animal rights people and the easily offended. Yes, this is the made-up one. This one. THIS ONE! Argh!
** © Jim Davidson mayherestinpeace, 1983

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

"I don't do requests"

"I don't do requests"

So, I did a lovely Nativity scene last week, and I haven't gone to Hell yet.

"Go on, do the Adoration of the Maji", you said, egging me on. Here I am, then, doing the Adoration of the Maji, which, as you well know, is impossible to do without the words "Led by a star? Led by a bottle, more like!" setting up camp in my brain and refusing to move out. Three Wise Men, completely Brian of Nazareth-free. If that's possible.

From the Gospel of St Albert, the pathological liar

15 Now when Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judaea in the days of Herod the king, behold, there came wise men from the East End to Bethlehem; and, lo, the star, which they saw in the east, went before them, till it came and stood over where the young child was.

16 And when they were come into the house, they saw the young child with Mary his mother, and fell down, and worshipped him: and when they had opened their treasures, they presented unto him gifts; a set of golf clubs, an electric screwdriver with a built-in FM radio and a subscription to Judaean Babes; and Joseph said: sorted.

17 And Mary said: Didst thou not bring a gift for the child? He is Our Lord and Saviour, you know. And the wise man Balthazar said: Who do you think we are, three blummin' queens? You just can't get Myrrh these days. No call for it, bloke at B&Q tells us. And Melchoir said: C'mon Joe, why don't you get away from the old ball-and-chain and join us in the Royal Suite for a few bevvies? Casper's got some lady-friends who are keen to see your carpenter's tool.

18 And Joseph said: sorted, again.

19 And Mary was much vexed and sayeth: What in the name of slippery Elvis do you mean 'suite'? All the inns in this town are full, and we are forced to sleep in this barn amongst the cows and the sheep and the asses and the fowls. It's no place to give birth to the Son of God, I can tell you for nothing. Frankly this is worse than the time we went on holiday to Canaa, you know Joseph, when the goat split on us. It bloody stinks in here, and I'm certain the innkeeper's done something deeply unpleasant to our little donkey.

20 And the wise men did smirk greatly and sayeth: It's bloody marvellous being king, innit?

21 And seeing that Mary was much vexed and reaching for a pitchfork, the wise men relenteth and said: Keep your hair on Mrs, here's a couple of tickets for a flight to Egypt. Kids go free an' everything. Can't get fairer than that, can you? We was just saying to Herod - it's murder this time of year.

An... err.. Request

Over-competitive blogger writes: Go here and vote for the blog of the week.

Now, I'm not telling you to vote for me, because that would be A Bad Thing. But: I'll give you any money.

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Confusing the literati

Things to do for a laugh

No. 38: Confusing the literati.

Simple. I joined an online poetry community run by a major publishing house, where people who think they might be good at poetry cut and paste their doggerel and everybody else says how good it is that they managed to rhyme “cow” and “sow”. In fact, one chap there had, long ago, decided he was in charge and essential decreed that nothing remotely interesting should be posted on “his” forum. Nice poetry about nice things, and any newcomer was viewed with the deepest suspicion. And it's got to rhyme.

You know, the kind of crap they print in local newspaper letters pages on a particularly slow day.

So, I wrote some “nice” verses about Princess Diana, kittens and falling in love in the moonlight. You know: shit. They loved it and asked for more. In return, I would offer my reviews, which would all be “A stunning indictment of the human condition juxtaposed onto the delightful innocence of your naive verse”, even if it was about a pet pony.

Puppies. Mother Teresa and a few lines about the late Pope. “Pope John Paul/ An example to us all/ He came to us from Poland/ And moved my good friend Roland”.

Sod that. I let them have this, then, my finely honed meisterwerk:

The Knives

Knives in a drawer

"I cut bread", says the first, "The body of Our Lord."
"I cut meat", says the second, "so this family might eat."
The third: "I cut fruit, so they may thrive."
The fourth glowers, far cleaner than the rest
"I have a tale to tell, and 'tis true, by my blade.
"So listen well."

"He came into our kitchen, shouting, screaming for his food
"He swayed, drink on his breath, fight in his fists
"Pulled at her hair, called her ‘cunt’, punched her face
"Again, again, his fists called the tune, she sang the song of fear
"And when she fell, his boots continued the conversation
"Which did not last long."

"Her hand, it found the bone of my black, black handle
"Her thrust, sinking into the warm, red flesh
"Eviscerating, poisoning him with his own faeces
"Blood draining from ripped organs into torn lungs, drowning him slowly
"For I have seen what makes a man live, and have stopped it
"As she cries for lost love."

"Friends, I cut man."

Funnily, no bugger reviewed it. I don't know where I'm going wrong. Maybe I should have made it rhyme.

Saturday, December 24, 2005

Ho. Ho. Ho.

Ho. Ho. Ho.

A Happy non-denominational end-of-year celebration to all our readers. And if you think I've gone all politically correct on you, a Happy Christmas, too.

(Pic from Misty, who has far too much time on her hands.)

Friday, December 23, 2005

A Christmas Tale

A Christmas Tale

From the Gospel of St Albert, the pathological liar

9: And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid to the point of trouser-spoilage.

10: And the angel said unto them, Pick a card, any card. Look, there's nothing up my sleeve. You'll like this. Not a lot.

11: And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, You bloody liar Gabriel, we saw you hide the King of Spades up there ten minutes ago. Besides, Paul Daniels is much better, the lovely Debbie McGee's got smashing legs.

12: And the Angel said unto the heavenly host, You bastards, you never let me have any fun, it's not as if I was going double or quits or anything. Besides, if Paul bloody Daniels is so good, how come he can't stop his house from flooding? Answer me that, eh. Just wait until I win my flaming sword back from the Metratron, then I'll show you.

13: And the heavenly host mocked the angel and said, At least Paul Daniels doesn't go out with his robe tucked into his y-fronts; and lo, they gave the angel a wedgie, and there was great rejoicing.

14: And it came to pass, as the angels were gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another, What the bloody hell was that all about then? Pass the sheep, Matthias. Going to the stoning tomorrow?

Thursday, December 22, 2005

The Christmas Vote-o

The Christmas Vote-o

Ho. Ho. And indeed, "Ho". I have stories that number four. And "four" are the number of stories I have. As a matter of fact, I actually have thirty-two, but things could get messy and there may be fatalities, and Baby Jesus will come looking for you with a clunking great spanner screaming "Myrrh! Myrrh! Give me MYRRRRRH!", and then where will we be?

Vote, then for one of these:

* The Operator - "Now listen carefully, 007", said Q, "This may look like a sixteen-inch Monster Kong dildo, but if you twist this end through ninety degrees..."

* Dazed and Confused - At last, Camilla had solved the mystery of her missing laundry. Over Christmas dinner, she dropped the bombshell: "Don't you think the Earl of Wessex is looking bustier than usual?" The Duke of Edinburgh harumphed and hoped nobody would notice his panty-line.

* Potman - Yoko smiled as another royalty cheque for "Merry Xmas (War is Over)" thudded onto her doormat. Opening a secret door known only to a select few, she descended the stairs to the lab, where the final touches were being made to her meisterwerk - the JohnLennonKillBot2000. The war, she knew, would soon be starting over, and, oh yes, this time she would win.

* Driving Test - "What have you got to lose?" his colleagues had suggested, "Tell her she's got great tits and you'll be laughing." So he did, and the former Sir Norman Wisdom found out that Her Majesty's sword was not entirely for ceremonial purposes.

Or simply, you could just save me the effort, and go for:

* The Christmas Tale 'o Doom - And they came with haste, and found Mary, and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger. And Mary said, "It's a girl!"

...the Official Scaryduck Christmas Greeting, which will virtually guarantee my fate in the burning pits of Hell. Heigh ho, look on the bright side - at least I'll stay warm in the forthcoming Ice Age.

And in real-life news

My Open University exam result thundered into my inbox yesterday like a big thundery thing.

That's S. Duck BSc (Hons), Dip Pol, Cert Soc Sci (Open), to you.

That deserves a honk.


Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Triple pluggage


My colleague Wanabehuman tells me he is celebrating six months in the world of weblog, and could I, perhaps, mark this auspicious occasion with a peer review of his work?

"A free plug, you mean?"

"That's the ticket. And could you tell them we need writers?"

Wanabehuman, then, is a brave stab at the Citizen-Journalism concept that is generating a fair amount of comment on the internet; not least from genuine journalists who don't like the fact their job isn't all that difficult getting out.

The site itself, though densely packed with information, is much less of a dog's dinner than it used to be, and now boasts articles from genuine journalists Phillip Knightley, Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy and Munira Mirza, giving it the gravitas and diversity it warrants.

Intelligent writing with a global perspective is rare anywhere on the internet - this site is worthy of far greater exposure than it currently gets, and deserves greater recognition for its brave step into the near-virgin territory of the citizen-journalist-blogger.

They need writers.

Will that do?

More pluggage

I've just found out that my cousin Andy is the brains behind this and this; which just goes to show how little I know my own family. Wow.

Even more pluggage

Jane's got a new thing, a blog about the magic televisual-receiving apparatus that seems to be gaining popularity amongst the lower classes. Hoorah!

Also: Oh Lordy! That mad bugger's back from the Front. Mehhhh!

And because I'm already receiving complaints about the lack of scatalogical action in today's blog: "Done a Poo". Scored 13/20: "Katy Hill and Janet Ellis eating a banana suggestively" on the Scaryduckworth-Lewis scale.


Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Get Lost II

Get Lost II

Following up on yesterday's post, I thought I might illustrate my utter lack of sense of direction through Monday's drive to work.

I have worked in the same building in Reading for the best part of 16 years, nine months and 24 days. You would have thought that I'd know where it is by now. Granted, I couldn't find it on my first day, but I really did think I was over that by now.

My trip to work isn't your average. While most people live within easy reach of their place of employment, home and office in my case are 107 miles apart. I've driven the same route for long enough, however, to end up in the right county nine times out of ten.

So, having just roared out of Salisbury - the halfway point on yesterday's journey, it was with some annoyance that I found myself stuck behind the natural enemy of the maniacal driver - the Tesco lorry, bumbling along at 40mph towards Andover.

Well, I was having none of it. I knew a shortcut, one which would zoom me along to the A303, past this forty ton motoring menace and onwards, ever onwards towards Basingstoke. I knew it was a shortcut, because I'd driven along it before. About fifteen years previously. In the other direction.

"Save seconds on your journey!" it beckoned to me, "Turn right down here."

Without even signalling, I dived down the road to Stockbridge, wherever that is.

It was half an hour later, as the sun started to rise, that I was becoming more than a little worried about the number of road signs egging me on toward Southampton. Before I knew it, I was in some housing estate in Winchester, my throat aching from repeated screams of "BLOODY-FUCKING-WHERE-THE-BLOODY-FUCK-IS-THE-FUCKING-MOTORWAY!"

Then, blessed relief as I spot a small blue sign: "M3". I knew the M3 went past Winchester. Thatcher's legacy of rural vandalism as Twyford Down ripped through the local hills, destroying the Hampshire countryside forever in the quest to knock five minutes of car journeys, and I hope they bury her in the fast lane, while she's still breathing.

Back to the chase: I followed the signs to the M3. For a very, very long time. In fact, I followed signs to the M3 which also read things like "Southampton 6 miles" and "Going to Portsmouth? Nearly there, fella!"

At last, I reached the motorway, somewhere near the entrance to Hell that is Eastleigh, and headed, at long last, in the right direction, having only wasted an hour and approximately thirty miles. Losing the advantage of my early start, which would normally see me flying into work, I was now stuck in the Monday morning rush hour, and joined the crawl up the M3 toward London and then on through Reading, officially the worst town on the planet for stupid road junctions. I got to work just in time to knock off.

I have spent some time studying a map to find out where I went wrong:
i) Don't take shortcuts. That is why they have main roads, because they go where you are heading
ii) Never follow signs to Winchester. You'll only regret it later

I wouldn't complain, but I've taken two days off this week just so I can get home in time for Christmas. David Blunkett, I fear, is a better driver than I.

Monday, December 19, 2005

Get Lost

Get Lost

I used to have the best sense of direction ever. I could find my way anywhere - even at night - just by looking at the sky, recognising a landmark and marching off in the right direction.

It was uncanny - the merest look at the landscape around me, and I could tell, down to the nearest square metre, exactly where I was, where I was going, and how many minutes it was until the next public house. Who needs a map and compass, when you've got a pigeon's homing gland grafted onto the back of your head?

Plonk me down in the middle of the country in the middle of the night - and good God, both my parents and my Scout troop did just that with a disturbing regularity - and I would be home, grinning like a smug bastard just as they stepped out of the car.

These days, I get lost in my own bathroom, and if actually told to "Get Lost", the chances are I will.

What the bloody hell's happened there, then? I've gone from Indian tracker to bloke-holding-map-upside-down-and-getting-rubbish-directions-from-equally-lost-traffic-wardens in the space of a few short years.

It's not as if I took a knock on the head and all my l33t mapping skills disappeared overnight, because I can still read a map, even if I have to refer to it every five seconds before turning right instead of left.

Frankly, I blame the internet, and the random "You are here" arrows they put on the maps on The internet's made me lazy, stupid and sweary. I've lost count of the times I've printed out a streetmap map, headed straight for the arrow and got hopelessly lost, stamping around backstreets inventing fantastic new swearwords to entertain the locals. Twice, that's how many. And one of them in my own home town.

I currently have no idea where I am now.

Friday, December 16, 2005

Outhouse o' Doom

Outhouse o' Doom

We lived in a progressive London home in the arse end of the 1960s – we had an inside toilet, the heating was powered by genuine coal and we possessed a copy of Rolf Harris's "Two Little Boys" on 7" vinyl. However, we still had the old outside lav, next to the coal hole and the wrought iron garden swing, constructed solely to kill unsuspecting children. The outside toilet could be pressed into service in an emergency, such as my brother flushing an entire roll of paper down the upstairs bog and flooding the bathroom, again. It smelled, I remember, of Jeyes Fluid.

One day, and as the six-year-old member of the family, I was not privy to the discussion, it was decided that the privy was to be pressed into other uses. Naturally, I found out the hard way.

Well, these things have a habit of happening. You're running up and down the back alley, climbing up Janine Bailey's tree (Short off-topic aside: Mmmmm.... Janine Bailey.....) and all of a sudden you're caught short with a terrifying desire to cut off a log. Say goodbye to breakfast. Snip off a length. Done, indeed, a poo.

I ran, all the way from the Bailey's garden four doors up the road, through the back gate, up the garden, past the huge galvanised iron swing (named, I completely made up just now "Bowfell's Deathtrap"), and threw open the door of the outside lav, muscles already relaxing for the inevitable.

I was faced, somewhat inexplicably, by a lawnmower, a rusty bicycle which had once been part of a tank and a phalanx of garden tools. We no longer had an outside lav. Instead, we had a make-shift brick-built shed. A garden shed with its own plumbing, hidden somewhere behind a hoe, a shovel and a garden fork.


I dashed into the house, intending to sprint upstairs to our newly-installed inside bathroom. I only got as far as the kitchen, where my mother was cooking rock cakes. They never actually started as rock cakes, but, you know...

Done a poo.

I was wearing shorts, and a failed attempt to scoop up the mess as it plopped onto the floor only made things worse.


That was my mother, who had a point, truth be told.


That was me, realising I had been rumbled, and knowing that I could never ask to lick out the bowl ever again*.


That was the lovely Miss Bailey running in to find out where I'd gone, only to slip in something nasty.

She's a doctor now, via a spell as Asia-Pacific Trampolining Champion. I know: "Here's what you could have had". All wrecked by bottom misbehaviour.


That's me, now.

* The correct answer being, of course, "Pull the chain like everybody else does."

Thursday, December 15, 2005

Thursday vote-o

Thursday vote-o: Two for the price of one

You lucky, lucky people. Not only is there a regular vote-o, but you also get a chance to stuff somebody else's ballot box and it only costs you 25p a go.

Vote the first: Vote-me-up for tomorrow's Scary story! As this site is currently running on auto-pilot, the vote is restricted only to stories I've actually written and have ready-to-go in Blogger. It's technical, I'm lazy, and you get what you're given.

* The Operator: "As the bull rammed itself home for the final time and consciousness faded into welcoming darkness, John Craven found himself yearning for the simple life back in the Newsround studio. You didn't get this kind of reaming as a newsreader. Not on a Sunday, anyway."

* Dazed and Confused: "In the light of new information from laboratories in the Far East, the Department of Health was forced to issue a new public health warning. 'You can only contract Avian Flu from bumming chickens. Do not bum chickens'"

* Potman: "As Dick Cheney came to, he realised with no little horror that his worst nightmare had indeed come true. The head-dress. The backless trousers. The thumping bass. He was on tour with The Village People. Again. The shotgun-wielding midget smiled and winked. Things would be getting much, much worse before they got better."

* Outhouse o' Doom: "In his excitement, Stephen clicked the 'Buy it Now!' button on Ebay, and any day now, thirty-seven pairs of Cherie Blair's used panties and a dirty letter on Downing Street notepaper would be coming through his letterbox. Suitably aroused, he slid Jerry Springer: The Opera into the DVD player again, and praised the Lord for the sin of lust."

Vote the second and a message from Mrs Duck: "My favourite cousin Ian is in the final of Strictly Come Dancing this Saturday night. Please vote for him, or Scary won't get anything for Christmas. I might add that if Ian and Zoe don't win, the Scaryducklings will cry, and it'll be all your fault. So, no pressure or anything."

The phone number is 0901 121 4012, with half of the 25p call charge going to Children in Need. Do it! Do it NOW! I've already got to see a former Boyzone in panto this Christmas, so don't make my life any worse than it already is.

Vote-me-do, and Vote-Ian-me-do!

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Rugger Buggers

Rugger Buggers

If it were not for Rugger Buggers, the British ale brewing industry would have died out years ago. In recognition of this, there are certain rules and standards which should be observed by both sides of the arrangement.

In short, this boils down to one statement of fact that even the most brain-damaged of lock forwards can remember: no poncy drinks, you great poove.

As a barman of a certain vintage, I fully understand The Way of the Drunken Rugger Bugger, and, after a strenuous training course over the period of ten minutes, learned that only the following drinks – taken from an approved list - should be served to rugby players: REAL ale (preferably with dead things to add to the taste/alcohol retaining properties), Guinness, sweet sherry.

Any drink involving “lager”, “Babycham”, or is served in quantities of less than a pint are strictly verboten, unless consumed as chasers. Snakebite, the drink of cunts, students and student cunts is punishable by death.

The only acceptable bar request by a Rugger Bugger is: "Fifteen pints of your strongest, barman!", to which a companion must immediately chip in with the rejoinder "Excellent! I'll have fifteen pints as well!"

Within an hour, the singing will start, and a rolled up newspaper will be inserted up the scrum half's bumhole and set of fire because he ordered snakebite.

Then, like a tornado, the entire rugby team will depart, leaving the pub a mass of empty glasses and abandoned kit, with only the faintest of echoes of "I'm a stupid dicky-di-dildo" coming from the pub down the road, where the entire performance is repeated.

At closing time, you may find the scrum half, face down in the gents, his bottom like Hiroshima the Day After, all because he ordered snakebite.

Rugby players: Say no to snakebite.

Tuesday, December 13, 2005



I had a letter in Viz once. This is it:

Dear Viz

What a load of rubbish these "old wives tales" are.

Yesterday, whilst admiring a particularly beautiful sunset, I heard an old wife saying "red sky at night, shepherd's delight". The next morning, her husband - who happens to be a shepherd - was tragically killed in a bizarre spacehopper accident.

Hardly reason to be delighted, I'm sure you'll agree.

Dan Prick, Reading

From that comedic high-point, it's been downhill all the way. So, from this tenuous link, do you have any Viz-style top tips to share?

"Courting couples! Save money on contraception by simply turning your Rubber Johnny inside out after you've used it."

Monday, December 12, 2005

When Done A Poo goes bad

When Done A Poo goes bad

Disaster. A bit of a runny bot yesterday evening following a Mexican meal that went horribly, horribly wrong. Chilli? Not a bit of it – my arse was red hot, as are my punning abilities, it would seem. An afternoon spent catching up with some reading on the toilet, and I assumed, foolishly, that the worst was over.

Then, me charming wife asks me to rearrange some furniture so her chair's no longer in an annoying draught coming straight off the English Channel, over Chesil Beach, right down the chimney and straight up her left trouser leg. Of course, the inevitable happens as I'm humping the sofa. No, not that - the familiar warm, damp feeling as you follow through in your kecks.

For a few moments, my head spinning with delirium, I wasn't 100 per cent certain what had happened, so I absent-mindedly rubbed the gusset into my arse-crack for a feel, and just spread it about more. It's then that I realised that any attempt to flee, or to make the slightest movement will result in the dark, dark secret revealed.

"What's that smell?" she finally said, and I blamed it on the dog.

Ah, love's true course finds its way again.

Damn you Mexicans!

Filthy Lucre

With Christmas just around the corner, and my bottom resembling the aftermath of an oil depot fire, why not reward your favourite and hardest-working blogger (who has suffered geiune gonad-rending agony for his art this year) with something from his Amazon Wish List?

Ah go on, be your best friend. And you're right, I have absolutely no shame.

Sunday, December 11, 2005

Favourite Things - Punked

The Worthless Pursuit of Favourite Things - Punked

"Punked" is a three hour Sunday evening music show playing nothing but old-school punk - plus one or two acts which are about as punk as my granny *cough* XTC *cough* - for old duffers like me to embarrass themselves in from of their kids.

In a commercial radio industry that's far too scared to play anything but current chart hits and Phil Collins oldies, it's a refreshing change from my local station - Wessex FM and the rest of the Local Radio Company, even if there's only so many punk classics you can play week-in, week-out.

Sunday, 7pm-10pm. Listen-o in stunning 24bits/sec hi-fidelity!

I done a request. They might even play it.

Also: As pointed out in the comments, rigging the Wessex FM online Chistmas poll so that The Pogues win would be A Bad Thing. I urge you not to mock the democratic process in such a way. Well, go on then...

Friday, December 09, 2005

Chimney o' Doom

Chimney o' Doom

I hate DIY.

No. I hate DIY with a passion.

I will take pride in the end result, but it is the process of actually arriving there I cannot stand.

The fact is this: inanimate objects, especially pieces of wood, screws, fixings, saws and blunt instruments hate me with a passion and will do anything in their power to inflict injury and humiliation on my person. DIY, then, is a one-way ticket to woe, and boy, does it make me angry.

I cannot do any DIY without raging like a lunatic at the work I'm doing. The work responds in kind by making the job as difficult as possible; and thus the vicious circle continues until I am in my own little pit of hell, surrounded by discarded tools and smashed pieces of wood.

Of course, doing any work where there are spectators will just make things worse. The last thing I want to hear when the pieces don't quite fit together is a helpful "Have you remembered to cut out the little notch?"

"Yessssssssssssssss...." I will reply, sounding like a gas leak.

Last week, for this is recent history, Mrs Duck asked me to block the old fireplace in the dining room to stop soot, weather and dead things from falling down and making a mess of our lovely kitchen-diner.

This story's inevitable conclusion

It looked so easy. All I had to do was remove the old, ill-fitting block, measure up and fit a new one. Twenty minutes' work, tops.

Three hours later...

Everybody else decided to "leave Mr Grumpy at it" and went shopping.

Actually sitting in the fireplace, halfway up the chimney, shouting and swearing at the fact my carefully crafted piece of work didn't quite fit the not-quite square hole. Worse, it had gone up the chimney, got wedged, and was steadfastly refusing to come out again and get the sandpapering of its life.

Revenge! That's the thing!

"Come out you bas-TAAAAARD!"

I hammered at it with the first thing that came to hand. A wild swing with a rubber mallet, connecting with something unexpectedly solid.

It bounced back and hit me in the head. If there was a sound effect for this particular set of actions, it would have gone "BAAAAAARRRRN....SPANGGGGG!"

It hurt. It hurt a lot.

"FUCKING HEEEEEELLLLLL!" I screamed, and hit out at my work again, much, much harder.

That did the trick, and my carefully mutilated piece of plywood came unstuck and dropped neatly onto my head, pointy bit first.

I didn't get a chance to swear and curse at this particular piece of mixed fortune, for there were other forces at work. Dark, dark forces.

My second manly blow of the mallet had somehow dislodged something further up the chimney, and gravity was about to do its evil evil work.

I drew breath to scream and shout in pain and annoyance, when it hit me. About half a ton of sixty-year-old soot landed on my head.

Half a ton of soot, birds' nest, sand, dead things, living things, bits of chimney, and more soot. My world went black.

Not far away, there is a click and a muffled thump, as Mrs Duck returned from the shops with her parents.

"Are you finished yet?" she called from the hall.


"Let's have a look, and then you can make a nice cup of oh..."


I hate DIY.

Thursday, December 08, 2005

The Thursday Vote-o gone Mad, on Acid

The Thursday Vote-o gone Mad, on Acid

Another Thursday swings round like a big swingy thing, with nothing to show for it but a nose-bleed and a craving for coffee so strong you can stand a spoon in it. To illustrate the level of boredom that my week has descended to (the highlight being a huge gash on my leg falling off a ladder whilst hanging our chav-tastic Christmas lights), I bring you no less than eight Scary Stories for your voting pleasure:

Standard disclaimer, because some of you still don't get it: The quotes have absolutely nothing to do with the actual story. They are, because of the manky humour gland gear-changes involved, the hardest thing to write on the whole site.

* The Operator: It was only months later that Professor Hawking realised what he had witnessed was, in fact, the Duke of Edinburgh as viewed from up Her Majesty's bottom. It was all the proof he needed to confirm his "Brown Universe" theory.

* Dazed and Confused: Gordon loved being Chancellor of the Exchequer, because he could get his revenge on a hateful society whenever he felt like it. For example, nobody ever asked him questions about the petty cash tin, so the three million pounds he had pissed up the wall on the Crazy Frog Christmas single went completely unnoticed.

* Potman: "I'm sorry Miss Widdecombe," the official with the clipboard said, sounding almost, but not quite sincere in his business suit topped with a builder's hard hat, "But the form does say we're not to leave the premises until you get your anal fisting. It's all here in writing, if you care to look. Don't blame me. It's regulations."

* Outhouse: He had read somewhere that you could make it grow by hanging heavy weights from the end. All well and good, but difficult to hide at three o'clock on a Saturday afternoon when you're leading the line for Manchester United.

* Now, that's Magic!: As the cellar door slammed shut behind him, he knew full well he was trapped with a monster. A creature of unspeakable evil, the destroyer of worlds, the eater of souls. In short: Ainsley Harriot.

* Chimney o' Doom: Professor Hillingdon-Smythe spent months observing his subjects. Lying low, keeping out of trouble, he could observe their every move, every little nuance that the group made. He made copious notes on their behaviour, language patterns and mating rituals, hoping that one day, soon, we might understand what it is to be a "Chav".

* Dibs: It was the most amazing scam. Frank had managed to get hold of two thousand gallons of baby oil, a paddling pool and the services of some of television's most nubile female celebrities, just by using the words "I'm making a documentary for Channel Four". But now a clingfilm-wrapped Allsopp was asking difficult questions, and his brother still hadn't turned up with the camera.

* Pickle: It was a revelation that would rock the Christian church to its very core. There had been no five loaves and two fish. But why, thought Cardinal M'Buyo, why entrust the secret of The Lord's trip to the Galilee Happy Eater to Dan Brown, of all people?

I'm not going anywhere today, so I'll just stand here and urge you to vote, whilst simultaneously (and at the same time) invoking a mental image of Condi Rice getting it on back-door style with an only partially-aroused David Blunkett. It's the least I can do, and I will only stop if you pay me.

Update-o!: My referrer logs cannot lie. Which of you bastards googled this? As a gentleman and a loving husband, I'm not telling. Not for any money.

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Shed/Castle Interface

Shed/Castle Interface

A man's shed is his castle. My castle, however, is full to bursting with garden furniture. This is wrong.

I cannot move for green garden chairs and a large, grey plastic table. My Black and Decker Generic Workmate is wedged behind a decorative umbrella, which led to an important bit of sawing needed to be done using the old standby: "putting my foot on it".

You may observe that these items are essentially feminine in nature, women's tat invading my sacred manly space, reserved entirely for male-orientated tat.

Manly stuff I keep in my shed:

* A golf bag containing a 3-Wood and a putter
* Doctor Teeth, my chainsaw
* A pair of ancient steel-capped boots
* Enough chenicals to strip the vegetation from half a third world country, and to blow up the other half

Garden furniture is right up there with air freshener in the top ten of useless crap that women buy. Garden furniture should only be used by men if forced to at gunpoint, or in the direst of emergencies. These include use as an emergency living room suite should your usual furniture be stolen or repossessed; or if more than three people attend a barbecue and all the kitchen chairs are taken. In both these cases, the furniture should be immediately burnt after use, to prevent contamination.

Lounging in the garden making small talk with the wife's family is certainly interdit.

Notable exceptions: Hammocks, which like frenzied masturbation, should only be attempted out-of-doors by the supremely skilled.

Woe of the Day

I have today realised how old I am. And it is this: Seven months older than the leader of the Conservative Party. I never thought I'd see the day, but, woe, it has finally arrived.

Poor Scaryduck.

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Cuss you Bad, Swear me Good

Real Life Interface, Part II

GW sends our first entry in our Pointless-Letters-to-the-Press competition, with this missive to the Watford Observer. The standard is set - mirth, woe, and references to Global Warming. Quality.

Click to embiggen

Need I remind you: genuine prizes for the best letters published in local or national papers. Write-o!

Cuss you Bad, Swear me Good

Referrer logs are an excellent thing, allowing website owners to discover how people found your site, and guess at the level of disappointment when they discover the lack of colostomy bag sex contained within.

A recent disappointed visitor arrived from google on the search term “worst swear word poll”. I’ve never run a worst swear word poll, and good God, I’m going to right that wrong, here and now.

Your nominations, then, for the world’s top profanity, if you please (consider the plain vanilla, and frankly losing their shock value, “fuck” and “cunt” already nominated). The more imaginative, the better.

Degree of difficulty: Use of reference materials optional.


Monday, December 05, 2005



To BBC Television Centre for an editorial meeting, where I was to spend far too much time stuck in a lift.

It was terrible. For long, long minutes, we all stood there trying not to broach the inevitable, but before long I was the one who broke the silence.

"I'm afraid we're going to have to eat someone", all the while staring at the weedy-looking bloke at the back of the elevator car. Survival of the fittest, and all that.

"Let's not be too hasty about this," he squeaked, "we've only been here a few minutes."

Yeah, right. Minutes become hours, become weeks. Best to strike now while the supplies are fresh.

"As I said, I'm afraid we're going to have to eat someone."

"But I've got sandwiches!" he wailed, the desperation heavy on his voice, his mouth running dry with fear, "I've just been to 'Pret'."

My trapped colleagues closed in on the wretch, saliva already dripping from their mouths in the expectation of the hot, raw flesh between their teeth, and the sating blood running down their throats. My Swiss Army keyring fell into my hand, ready to deliver the coup de grace.

And the lift shuddered back into life, the doors opening on the second floor.

A new passenger.

He who goes by the name 'Wogan'.

"I'm afraid we're going to have to eat someone."

Friday, December 02, 2005



Regular readers will already know that much of my youth was spent as a member of several quasi-military youth groups, preparing myself for a life of crushing the working classes under the jackboot of military-industrial oppression. Or to you, the Scouts and the Air Cadets.

Both of these fine institutions had their headquarters in run-down local halls, which went unused from one-day to the next, except on one evening a week, when they were filled with a handful of uniformed idiots, who sat there, freezing, learning how to tie a knot or find their way about on a map. In other words, the whole thing needed spicing up a bit, and tying the new boy up with his own string had lost its charm the day night we went home forgetting about little Pauly in the storeroom.

In the Scouts, we had found out about a thing called round-the-pole flying, which combined the saddest elements of model-making with all the insanity that comes with playing with 240 volts of mains electricity and the added joys of projectile motion.

Technical bit: What you had was this: a burning desire to build and fly model aircraft, but limited space to launch the thing into the big blue. Like, say, a freezing cold Scout hut. So, you went out to a specialist shop and bought a five foot high pole, held in the vertical by a heavy base, with a ball race type-of-thing at the top. You then tethered your plane to the ball race at the top of pole by a long length of copper wire, which is then connected to the plane's electric motor. Then, the whole affair is connected up to a transformer, a scalextric handset, and then the mains, and you watched as your balsa marvel flew round and round in circles on the end of its wire until the cows come home.

And to prove I'm not making this up - a picture of a bloke with no face and his simple friend finding the whole experience far too exciting.

"Wheeee! This is fun! What d'you think, No-Face?"
"Mmmf mmmmff! Mmmmmmfff!"

All well and good for the easily pleased, or those under the watchful eye of a qualified Scout leader. However, after the first thirty seconds, we found that the whole concept needed a bit of jazzing up. After all, it soon became apparent that model-making skill was not required in the slightest, and even a housebrick could be made to fly with a powerful enough motor. And that bit older, that bit stupider, and with our Air Cadet leadership out bullshitting and spoon-bending somewhere, we were left to our own devices.

This would, as any student of these stories will be able to tell you, lead to only one thing: doom. Doom and woe. Two things, then.

We invented “stunt running”. With a plane zooming around the hall on a ten-to-fifteen foot diameter circle, a “volunteer” would be made to run a complete circuit of the pole without being hit by the plane or decapitated by the wire. Extra points were scored for touching the pole, jumping over, or ducking under the wire, multiple circuits and even running anti-clockwise to the aircraft’s clockwise, all the time risking something hideous in the way of high-velocity cheese-wire.

There were regular plane-up-the-arse moments as an ill-judged run went horribly wrong, often to the great hilarity of the spectators. The true classic was for the pilot to catch some poor bugger round the ankles, leaving him wrapped in wire and face down on the floor. This was made all the better if it was someone on an errand who had walked into the hall completely oblivious to the dangers of a wide-opened space surrounded by grinning idiots.

And still we wanted more. Rigging up a second ball-race, we added a second plane for twice the danger, and with a bit of a tweak, you could actually get two planes flying in opposite directions, which led to true carnage, and the death of my previously bullet-proof Spitfire.

So, we added spikes and razor blades to leading edges of wings, and cranked the transformer up to fifty volts and then the fun really started on the Run ‘O’ Doom. Shredded shins were seen as a badge of honour. You did, however, tend to lose marks of full uniform inspections.

“And this,” said Flt Lt Tipping, a genuine WWII Bomber Command veteran, “is where the lads fly their electric planes.”

“How very interesting”, replied Air Vice Marshall Maisner CB CBE AFC, veteran of the Free Polish Air Forces in WWII, and now senior officer in charge of everything, ever. “It’s good to see the youth of today so fascinated in flyi….”


Corporal Hackett would never walk again. Luckily, however, the blood stains came out.

We were told to stop.

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Vote? Oh!

Vote? Oh!

After my starring performance on Al-Jazeera this week (see if you can spot my gorgeous features in this here Flickr set from the lovely people at the Al-Jazeera staff blog), it's time to show those Yankee imperialist pig-dogs and their puppet regime in Downing Street the true meaning of democracy.

Vote! Vote for tomorrow's Scary Story! Vote now, or its some secret prison camp in Romania where they send the Cheeky Girls to felch you to death with a straw. And ...oooohhh... it's a celebrity special:

* Pole-Dancing: "When he eventually came to, he realised that the hazy memory of masturbating himself to a frenzy in the centre circle during the FA Cup Final had not been some terrible dream. He had no choice. He would ask Sir Alex for a transfer straight away."

* The Operator: "Clutching the small bag containing Kirstie Allsopp's nail clippings, he headed back to his secret lab chuckling to himself. Yes, by tomorrow, Lord Archer would posses an army of Allsopps, all ready to do his terrible, terrible bidding."

* Dazed and Confused: "Fuckin' hell Felicity," Penelope Keith moaned, "I'm sick to death of rubbing up against this bollard. Can't I have a go on Professor Hawking now?"

* Potman: "Dogs! Is there no end to these awful, awful dogs!" David 'The Duke' Dickinson said to himself as he stumbled into the hospital's casualty unit. He would rue the day, he reflected, that he should choose to pursue his flashing hobby outside Crufts.

* Outhouse: "Poor Linford Christie. The invitation from the Palace specifically requested that he should bring his own refreshments. And now, his lunch was there, sitting on the kitchen table, but it was becoming increasingly apparent that he had nothing to carry it in."

And now, you may reward yourself with my flu-ridden Tunisia photos.

Stats Whore

November saw the most hits to this site in a calendar month ever ever ever, with one thousand of you arriving here every day. At least some of you even stopped to read the contents, though I'm pretty sure that the manky devil who arrived here from google looking for "Penelope Keith naked" went away disappointed.

Thank you for your support, send money I shall wear it always. send money

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Scaryduck's Top Tips

Scaryduck's Top Tips

Things you don't want to see the insides of

i) Yourself. If you are seeing your insides, it is usually a sign that something has gone seriously wrong. Try to avoid this scenario if at all possible.

Also, if you are seeing the insides of something you don't normally see the outside of (eg, your liver, kidney or your bottom), you may safely assume that you are having the Worst Day Ever, or are starring in a re-make of Inner Space. Or a Sven Hassel book.

Top Tip: Rotating knives = bad, as a rule.

ii) Your local pizza takeaway. Pizza should only be ordered by phone. That way you can preserve the mental image that "Dinos Pizza and Kebab's" resembles, and has similar hygiene standards to, the Pizza Huts of this world.

On no account should you go out of your way to drive past this establishment – no matter how glossy the menu that was thrust through your door by persons unseen – to "check them out". If you are ever told that the delivery driver is off sick, you would be best advised to sink as low as Pot Noodle rather than offer to pick up your 12-inch Hawaiian with extra sausage yourself.

In the great scheme of things, random pizza takeaways rank somewhere between taxi offices and a Casualty Unit waiting room on a Friday night as undesirable places to find yourself. On the plus side, you may discover, exactly why the delivery driver has gone home sick. You may also recognise the pizza chef from his glory days as TV's Skeletor.

Top Tip: If you can see your meal being prepared – flee.

iii) Vending machines. This is ground that I've been over before, and these days, even the simplest of devices delivering powdered crap and warm water into a plastic cup looks like the inside of an ebola-infested dalek when the service engineer comes to call. Why do you think the he has so much protective clothing?

Top Tip: Don't have the soup. You know how posh people say the contents of teabags are the factory floor sweepings…?

iv) Your car. Gone are the days when you could flip the bonnet open, fit a new alternator, replace the oil sump and tune your motor to race standards on a Sunday morning with parts you liberated from the local tip and an oil-smudged Haynes manual. My Austin Allegro ran perfectly well for several years with vital parts sourced from a lawn mower. Indeed, there was a marked improvement in performance, and no, I'm not making this up.

These days, the engine compartment is filled-to-bursting with a terrifying maze of tubes, wire, shiny metal alloys and alien technology sourced from the Roswell crash. You can just about be trusted to check the oil and fill the windscreen washer without invalidating the warranty – anything else involves tools that have not yet been invented and require an anatomy not of this planet to see into whichever parallel dimension they've hidden the spark plugs.

Top Tip: Walk, or get an Austin Allegro. All much the same, really.

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

As seen on Al Jazeera

As seen on Al Jazeera

I was on the telly last night. Al chuffin' Jazeera, no less.

So, last night to That There London in my capacity as cardboard-and-string flavoured boy journalist, where I was to cover a press event on the subject of a leaked British Government memo, in which the President of the United States reveals plans to attack a civilian television station on the sovereign territory of a friendly government.

He is, of course, utterly bonkers.

The whole report over here.

London: Love/Hate

I love London. I hate London.

I love the Tube. I hate the Tube.

I love the streets, the bustle, the shops, the flow of the people like a tide.

But I also hate the streets, (some of) the people, brutal elbowing, no-time-of-day, the fight-fight-fight, I don't want your sodding leaflet, your golf sale, your all-you-can-eat botulism buffet o' doom, and I am both a sinner and a winner. No, take that back, I love Sinner-or-winner Man.

I love the Thames, the glance of the river of sanity between the madness of the concrete buildings, people on boats getting there faster than on buses, but knowing full well you've got to get out and walk soon.

I hate it, but I was born there, and still I go back.

On the official Duckworth-Lewis scale of rating stuff, yesterday's London trip scored 9/20 - Cherie Blair with a strap-on. The free half-way decent umbrella given away with the immediately-binned Evening Standard, and the fact that no public transport was involved was offset rather cruelly by having to eat at Garfunkel's. Again.

On second thoughts, better make that 6/20 - The Princess Anne unnamed many-tentacled woe.

God, I hate London.

Monday, November 28, 2005

RLI: Real Life Interface

RLI: Real Life Interface

In which the author encourages you to switch off your computer, do stuff and win other, real life, stuff.

I spend far too much time on the internet, and it’s a fair assumption that you do as well. It’s not healthy, and can only lead to a pasty complexion, a withered body and a right arm like Popeye. Time, then, to switch off your computer and go and do something more interesting instead.

And this is my plan. Operation RLI: Real Life Interface. A plan to cause panic, confusion and general running amok the length and breadth of the country. And abroad, as well, if we can help it.

Your town almost certainly has a local newspaper. And this newspaper almost certainly has a letter page. Most of these are screaming out for content that hasn’t been written in crayon or on the back of a beer-mat by the local nutter, and will publish virtually anything with a local angle. Try it yourself. It’s fun.

Actually, I do want you to try it yourself. Write letters to your local paper, the more outrageous the better. When they publish it, send me a scan, or a link if they are mental enough to publish it online, and I’ll put it on a special page I have planned just for the event. You will most likely have to use your own name and address – they check, y’know – but you can ask for an alias. Check their terms and conditions, but don’t be put off by bored sub-editors making it up as they go along. Local rags will kill for decent letters page content - give them what they want.

Extra credit for:

* Bizarre subject matter
* A poem, in the style of an aggrieved pensioner
* Prominent placing on the letters page
* Tying a local issue to an international story in the most tenuous manner possible
* Starting a letter with “So…” or “Why oh why oh why…”
* “I am researching a book on …. and I wonder if anyone in the area can help me” (particularly good for newspapers outside your area)
* Winning genuine cash money for “Letter of the Week”
* The words "mirth" and "woe"
* Getting an editorial reply, or better still…
* Starting a local controversy

I’ve found it’s the simple stuff that really sets the ball rolling, such as inconsiderate dog owners, or car/cycle/pedestrian arguments. If you’re good, you can fill the page for days, stoking the fires by insisting on a right to reply.

Did I say prizes? Oh yeah – prizes for the best ones. No closing date – let’s look at this as a long-term project of mirth and woe. Like Fight Club, only without the fighting.

You’ve got your work cut out to beat our local champion. This week’s controversy saw a superbly crafted piece of lunacy imploring the immediate evacuation of Weymouth and surrounding villages all the way inland to Dorchester “in case of a Tsunami which could kill us all”. Genius.

Here's one we made earlier. See? They'll print any old rubbish, redeemed by a superb Thin Lizzy reference in the title.

Friday, November 25, 2005

Gullible Twat

Gullible Twat

The BBC Model B Micro-computer. Thirty-two kilobytes of raw, naked computing power. In the right hands, it became a valuable educational tool readying youngsters such as myself for a future in the burgeoning IT industries. In the wrong hands, used solely for the running of Samantha Fox Strip Poker and the authoring of shit-hot lesbian pornography. Like myself, too, is it happens.

Being of limited means, however, I found my Saturday job at Prestos supermarket and wine shop – the choice of the discerning wino – didn't quite stretch to getting hold of the latest releases for the Beeb, and with a disc drive prohibitively expensive, anything on cutting-edge cassette technology was gratefully snapped up.

So, when I was told there was a hidden all-formats computer game embedded in the 12" version of Dead or Alive's "You Spin me Round (Like A Record)" which you could play into your computer, I was in there like a teenager with a surprisingly large record collection.

The game was, I read, a hilarious role-player based around the adventures of our favourite eye-patched gender-bending chart-toppers. This new technology was really working, so I thought.

I knew exactly where to find such a disc, because I had recently bought it, not fully appreciating that it was, in fact, as camp as tits. In fact, I had recently spent a rather enjoyable evening at a certain low-quality Bracknell nightclub frugging away like a bucket of soapy eels to said track on several occasions, not realising the relatively low male-to-female ratio on the dance floor at the time. I had failed to pull, so once again, I went home and pulled myself*. But then I still thought Frankie Goes to Hollywood were as straight as a die. Oh Holly…

Anyhoo, back to the gayness, and with the help of a few leads I had lying about the house, thanks, in the main, to a brief flirtation with a world of geekery, I rigged up the output from my radiogram (oh yes, it was that long ago), and played the red hot Hi-NRG classic into my BBC Micro, a brand new cassette inserted firmly yet lovingly into the drive to save the results. It sat there, cursor blinking back at me on the CHAIN"" command. Not a sausage.

“Try turning the volume up,” said Nigel.

“Try it with less bass.”

“Try it on 33rpm.”

That's when the complaints from downstairs started.

But still - bugger all, and it looked like I wasn't going to get my free computer game after all.

My plans unravelling like a Chelsea Belgian bun, it would have been enough force any young man to don women's clothing and run amok after Margaret Thatcher with his dad's second best chainsaw. Instead, I turned to my friends.

So, I took it round to my mate Matt's house because he had a C-64, and we both thought, that despite promises, I might just have been playing it into the wrong format. We also new some poor bastard with a ZX Spectrum, and any I/O port in a storm, as it were (See? I made a geek funny).

I was only on the twentieth attempt that I remembered where I had seen this vital tip-off, and legged it back to my bedroom to see where I was going wrong. It was a copy of the late, lamented Record Mirror. A copy of Record Mirror dated… April 1st 1984.

Hook. Line. Sinker.

Gullible Twat.

Of course, fact is stranger than fiction, and I have found, in researching this piece that several pop acts in the 1980s really did put out computer games as extra tracks on their vinyl releases! That’s where we were going wrong – I didn’t have a Speccy, nor a love for the Thompson Twins or Shakin' Stevens. Lucky escape, then.

* Copyright Spike Milligan, mayherestinpeace

Thursday, November 24, 2005

The Bestest Present Ever

The Bestest Present Ever

Yesterday, the lovely Mrs Duck gave me The Bestest Present Ever. My very own chainsaw. It's lovely, buzzy and very, very sharp. On the down side, it is electrical, which gives you a limited range if you wish to run amok.

Currently, my running amok range is about ten metres, plus the length of any extension lead I may have lying around. Still, it's the thought that counts, and just as soon as I've thrown off the dreaded lurgi, I shall be out there, amok on the streets of Weymouth with my new friend, Doctor Teeth.

She loves me. She really, really loves me.

"Greetings, potential victim and meat supply. You don't happen to have access to a nearby 13-Amp power supply? I've got an RCD device an' everything."
"Wha? Why?"
"Um... no reason."

Can't be bothered with much of a vote-o this week (lurgi) so you have the following:

*Gullible Twat: "In which your author cannot think of anything witty or outrageous to type here."

Tell you what, YOU think of something, and I'll shoe-horn it in to the story. Ah, just like the old days.


Wednesday, November 23, 2005

The Meaning of Life

The Meaning of Life

We are, I hope, all intelligent adults here. It’s not all bodily functions and swearing, and to prove it, I hope to lead a discussion on that deepest of philosophical questions: “What is the Meaning of Life?”

The great philosopher B. Forsyth tells us: “Life: It's the name of the game.” But is it?

Now, I know, without the threat of extreme genital torture, some clever bastard’s going to pop up and say “Ha ha – it’s 42, isn’t it? Ha ha – just like in the book with the depressed robot and the fella with the dressing gown. AND they got the question wrong. Ha. I preferred the film version.”

This is not the Meaning of Life, people, and I vow extreme genital torture on anyone who suggests otherwise.

So, where were we? Yes – complex philosophical, theological and existential discussion on how – and why- we are here on this insignificant planet in a brain-meltingly large universe. It is a question that has defeated the greatest minds our civilizations have produced, and to put and end to all this waste of brain cells, we’re not going to leave today until we’ve got an answer.

After years of personal research, I have come up with two suggestions to lead this discussion off.

Firstly, the words of the great American thinker and dead president Abraham Lincoln, at his last personal appearance in San Dimas, California: “Be most excellent to each other, and party on dudes!”

Deep, meaningful words from a great, great lover of the theatre, I’m sure you’ll agree, and a fine way to live your life.

However, regular Scaryduck reader Ricardipus reminds us there are more important things in life than slacking off and partying: “When the going gets tough, the tough play bongos.”

Bongo playing – an allegory for the human condition, combining anarchy with the self-discipline of rhythm and getting away with the easy option for as long as possible. That’s a bit more like it, but still lacks an all-embracing definition for the complex reasoning behind our very existence.

Then, examining unpublished notebooks from the current Lucasian professor of mathematics at Cambridge University, we found a page dismissing the works of Albert Einstein as a “nebulous fiction” with the following words written in a shaking hand in the margin:

“THE MEANING OF LIFE: There is one simple step to nirvana. Masturbate as much as you can in one month, then try to beat that figure,” followed by “167!!! Beat THAT Newton!!!”, circled three times.

Stephen Hawking: we salute you. No wonder you’re always smiling.

As the web is as close as we're ever going to get to the infinite monkeys thing (present company excepted, of course), the answer must be on these internets somewhere.

Other suggestions I have already received, hawking my theories round the Think Tanks of Europe:

* “Sticking my willy in things whilst drunk.”
* “To crush your enemies, see them driven before you, and to hear the lamentation of their women.” (I like this one).
* Pot as many balls as you can” (From the ‘Big Break’ school of thinking. Unfortunately these theories have been thoroughly discredited, as any form of life that revolves around the involvement of Jim Davidson is, frankly, not worth living.

Meaning of Life. Any ideas? Anyone? Anyone? Bueller? Bueller?

“I am so excited by this, I cannot wash.”

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Sgt Rock

Sgt Rock

“…is going to help me …win my own small battle of the sexes”

I’m happily married, as I’m sure you all know by know. Fourteen years, and she’s only ever tried to kill me the once. An attempt on my life which was, in retrospect, thoroughly deserved. After this rather unpleasant end-of-the-century upheaval, I’d like things to remain, on the whole, happy. But – something’s got to be said, and I’m going to say it here and now.

The House Rules are killing me.

Not the normal house rules, such as remembering not to tread dog poo into the carpet, and wiping the skids from the bowl. Those are, I’m sure you’ll agree, part and parcel of any domestic arrangement. It’s the other house rules. I’m not criticising the lovely Mrs Duck here, but you know the ones – the ones they make up as they go along.

When a new household rule comes into force (usually as a result of something heinous I’ve done), I no longer argue, I keep my head down and accept it, even if it utterly contradicts all the other house rules that have gone before. As our American friends say: “Suck it up.”

Rule 3,074: “Don’t wee in the toilet, you’ll stain it” – a bridge too far for my brittle sanity. The strict enforcement of rule 3,074 led to the return of one of the older house rules - Rule 37: “Don’t piss out of the window”, not to mention the drafting of new proposals regarding the proper use of wash basins, empty beer bottles and the watering of the garden.

I have decided to risk the wrath of my beloved and start writing these down.

No good will come of this.

“Don’t wipe your feet there - I’ve just hoovered the doormats.”

“Don’t mix your smelly laundry with mine – you’ll make it dirty.”

This is just the start...

Sunday, November 20, 2005

Duck in Tunis II

Duck in Tunis II

Friday: Another day of relentless note-taking, filing, writing and filing until finally collapsing with exhaustion at the end of it all.

The Summit wrapped up with an utterly frightening press conference in which human rights groups railed against our generous Tunisian hosts over the unfortunate and completely misunderstood last-minute cancellations of meetings (usually due to a double-booking where a police self-help worskshop entitled “Getting your retaliation in first - the fucking great stick approach” obviously took precedence), clubbings with fucking great sticks and arrests of bewildered hacks and local human rights defenders, who face a, frankly, uncertain future.

Of course, the collected local press corps were having none of this, and the chap from La Presse de Tunisie – a government shill if ever I saw one, present at every event to ensure that no difficult questions got asked - looked like he was about to explode as he attempted the “you too, your name is going in ze book” line of questioning, while the rest of us cowered at the back. “I will only answer questions from journalists” the podium replied to nervous laughter.

Most of us in the press room had already spent most of the day fending off some fat bloke wearing a large jacket with the word “PRESS” written across the back - whose only connection with the media was wandering around looking over our shoulders to check we were playing nice - putting round a petition declaring that “We, the undersigned, thank our generous Tunisian hosts for their wonderful hospitality, and I am completely uninjured”, which will undoubtedly appear on the front page of all Tunisian newspapers before the week is out. We all signed as “Lunchtime O’Booze, The Daily Gnome”.

Friday Part II: Upset that The Register’s Kieren McCarthy has stolen my thunder as this Summit’s Official Done-a-Poo Correspondent, I still feel it is my duty to describe the unique toilet experience at the Kram PalExpo. The Tunisian organisers have looked towards the Chinese way of doing things here, and have employed virtually every citizen of Tunis and its environs for the event. This means every toilet has an army of at least eight cleaners, armed with mops, buckets of water and an endless supply of air freshener. That’s two cleaners per cubicle.

You’d be halfway through an important bowel movement when a gnarled old hand would appear under the door and spray lemon freshness all over your Ben Sherman boots. The cleaners’ diligence with their mops, coupled with the poor aim of the 30,000 others with whom I am sharing this building, also means that the toilet floor is always under at least half an inch of water, adding an exciting uncertainty to your visit. One false move and your nearest change of clothes is a bus ride away. The Summit is filled with soggy-arsed delegates, journalists and King Gyanendra of Nepal.

There is also some sort of hose arrangement adding to the already terrifying toilet risk factor. Some cultures, it appears, do not use paper, but prefer a jet of freezing water up the bum to finish the job, and good luck to them. However, more than one poor European hack in the press centre has sat down on the can and thought “Does this thing work?” with all-too-predictable results.

Saturday: A day off! The big plan is to stay in bed as long as possible, and then take my Hong Kong Phooey towel to the beach. It comes as absolutely no surprise to find that it is raining. So I am instead writing a diary piece, and filing the news item that I was holding over until I got back. You know, the one about p**** f******, that could still get me into a Tunisian pound-me-in-the-ass prison if I’m not careful.

This has been the most boring day of my life. In fact…


The WSIS summit in Tunis ended on Friday. Because my employers didn’t fancy paying 800 pounds for a flight on Saturday, I am obliged to stay in Africa for an extra day, when BA6849 costs a mere 96 squids. I can see their point, to be honest.

Saturday 19th November 2005, then, will go down as the most boring day in my life. So bored was I, that I actually made a list of things that I did because I was bored:

* Made a list of things that I did because I was bored
* Done a poo
* Charged my mobile phone that doesn’t actually work in Tunisia, unless I want to dial a Tunisian number
* Finished Tony Hawks’ “One Hit Wonderland”, to find, with some disappointment, that he doesn’t mention skateboarding at all
* Had a shave
* Done another poo
* Said “bonjour” to the cleaning lady, but drew the line at “Pompt de pompt-pompt”, the filthy mare
* Created a Powerpoint presentation called “SWAAAAN! – A study in peckiness”, featuring the words “SWAAAAN!” and “Done a poo” in a variety of fonts
* Read a leaflet entitled “The development of the internet in Iran” from cover to cover, and thought it interesting
* Considered running amok with a sharpened bottle of Evian water
* Held out long enough until the restaurant opened

You don’t know how lucky you are.

Friday, November 18, 2005

Duck in Tunis

Duck in Tunis

If you’re expecting a Friday Scary Story today, then tough luck. I am currently in Tunis, covering the World Summit on the Information Society [the UN-sponsored event that’s deciding who owns the internet – America – and how to use digital technology to rot our collective brains – you’re reading it now] for my employers, a large British-based broadcasting corporation, which you may have heard of. Completely unconnected to my journalistic duties, I’ve been keeping a diary. This is it, you lucky, lucky people.

Tuesday: Why is it, that when you leave stupidly early for the airport “to allow time” for delays, disasters and stupid people, nothing actually goes wrong, leaving you bored out of your skull in the departure lounge at Gatwick Airport with three hours to kill.

After a mere seven minutes, even Garfunkel’s, the curse of the West End diner looks alluring, and I’ve already been thrown out of the Burberry duty free shop for laughing at the dog coat (priced too high even for an ironic purchase). Yo! Sushi is a no-no, as the thought of eating raw fish just before heading to bottom-uncertainty in Africa is completely out. It’s no good, two hours to go. Garfunkel’s has got me. Sorry.

Wednesday: The words “piss-up” and “brewery” cannot do justice to the situation. I have also had a spunker of an idea for my next book: Great Desert Car Parks I Have Stood About In”.

Fantastically, our hosts closed the registration centre at the airport minutes before the evening flights from Europe, bearing assorted delegates, company executives and bored hacks, began to arrive. The net result being hordes of confused delegates herded from place-to-place until, by chance, a desirable outcome is reached. At one point, being the only person to spot their hotel, I came within seconds of auctioning my room to the highest bidder. Then I saw my room.

The Tunisian approach to problem solving is this: stand around in all-male groups, shouting, smoking, and if one is available, repeatedly slamming a car door. The threat of a good door slam is enough to set any wheels in motion, and surrounded by clouds of smoke, stuff eventually happens.

The heavily-armed-goon-to-nervous delegate ratio here is pleasingly high, with some goons so important, they are allowed up to two guns, bayonets and a stick. Disappointingly, it turns out the five traffic cops on each street corner only have empty holsters. Rather like me then. It’s the guys NOT in uniform standing in the background that really scare you, though…

Also: Spotted – my first Tunisian bad transvestite. I didn’t realise they were allowed. If only I had known…

Wednesday, Part II: Everybody has a better hotel than me.

On the plus side, in just one (fifteen hour working) day, I have been personally jostled by Tunisian President Ben Ali, who actually has his own goons to do jostling for him (he’s THAT important), the Nigerian Communications Minister and the Sultan of Qatar, who was very polite in his jostling technique. There is no British jostling contingent. We are, apparently, saving our powder for 2012.

Today’s best ironic moment: The summit WiFi server and Ethernet connection crashing, leaving the entire media corps without internet. That’s the Information society for you.

Thursday: Great excitement round the Summit as news gets about that my friend and yours, Colonel Muammar “The Artist Formerly known as Mad Dog” Qadaffi, is due on the podium, just after an uninspiring warm-up act by the Communications Minister of the Republic of Moldova.

Two o’clock approaches, and a message comes through that the Leader of the Revolution is far too busy for this kind of thing, and he’ll be showing up in his own time. Naturally, at such a high-level event, he almost certainly playing his infamous mind-games, and probably has no intention of showing up at all. He’s probably back in Tripoli having a hummus fight with select members of his bodyguard.

And there lies the greatest disappointment – not actually getting to see the Qadaffi bodyguard – hand-picked, all-girl, all-ninja, all-ssssexxxx. Which is a shame – I’d shaved my palms specially.

The prospect of a Qadaffi/Mugabe double-act on Friday scares us all. Some people have already left. I’m here for the duration.

Thursday, Part II: Of course, the major achievement of this Summit is its steadfast agreement to do nothing at all. The internet is still American, the very rich companies that run the internet will remain very, very rich companies that run the internet, and lots of ministers and heads of state got up and said things about “connecting” with the world’s poor, undoubtedly to sell stuff to them.

One or two of the world’s poor, having spent their last Dinar on the cheapest hotel possible, actually asked for money, and offered to set up call centres in return.

Of course, I admit that I have been paid off by one of these large and very, very, very rich organisations that still run the internet to say nice things about them. I have received, in return, my first, and I fear, my last, corporate bribe. A rather cheap pair of socks from the all-powerful internet behemoth, the Numbers Registry Organisation. They are black, which is always a bonus.

Qadaffi – get over here – you’re missing out on free footwear, man.

Today’s best ironic moment in a summit steeped in irony: The US Government seminar on disaster management. As the President says: “You’re doing one heckuva job, Brownie”.

Kieren McCarthy of The Register is also blogging from this very room, and is now the official Done-a-Poo correspondent at this event.

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Poor, poor Kofi

Poor, poor Kofi

Yesterday, I met Kofi Annan, Secretary General of the United Nations and all-round good guy. Such a good guy, in fact, it makes me wonder, sitting here in my tin-foil hat, how such a quiet, softly spoken man became the figurehead of such a huge organisation.

He made a nice speech, in which he said nothing I didn't know already, and buggered off again, hand firmly held by President Ben Ali, who's been just about everywhere at this event.

Poor Kofi. Doomed to be nothing but a messenger boy, wielding no power at all unless our American friends say it's OK.

Of all this week's celebrity spots, the leader of the world was the most disappointing. How could he compete with...

Timmy Mallett: Two huge thumbs up in the staff canteen (in READING, you fools).

The lovely Debbie MacGee, the most orange person I have ever met, see through skirt and huge granny knickers.

Poor, poor Kofi.

This afternoon it's Colonel Qadaffi, listed only as "Leader of the Revolution".

Heh. Qadaffi Duck.

I hope he does that "You're desss-picible" thing.

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

That There Tunis

That There Tunis

My luxury hotel isn't.

The World's Worst internet connection, which, in a conference about the information society, is steeped in irony.

Yet to catch the crabs.

But: done a poo.

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Bollocks to this, I'm off to Tunisia

Bollocks to this, I'm off to Tunisia

Bollocks to this, I'm off to Tunisia*.

Tell you what - I'll start you off, and those of you who know the rules may take the lead in a game of Mornington Crescent while I'm travelling.

Prescott's 1998 revised regulations, please, and my only stipulation is that the Dollis Hill Loop is forbidden.

"Parson's Green"

*I'll be posting wireless stylee from Tunis, camels permitting.

Also: Buy Tim's book (see Amazon panel left) and make him rich.

Monday, November 14, 2005



I've been causing trouble. I used the word "spacker" on in the comments on somebody else's blog to describe the kind of moron who drunkenly runs up and down my street in the middle of the night, letting off fireworks and vandalising cars.

I know the context in which I use the word "spacker", and so, I should imagine, do you. But still, people are offended that I might be using a word that insults disabled people. I don't. I bear no grudge against those who pointed out my faux pax, elsewhere, I should temper my language on other people's blogs.

But: Jesus wept. Jesus wept piss.

Well, do you think I'm offensive? Re-phrase that. Do you think I'm nastily offensive, or simply re-using and re-defining words that are only shock the Daily Express readers of this world?

Besides, I don't need defending. I know I'm wrong.

As a rather offensive middle-class schoolboy, they banned all those nasty words when I was using them from the safety of a rather offensive middle-class schoolboy gang. So we came up with a non-specific, non-offensive term which they couldn't stop us from using: "anvid". They banned it.

B-B-Blenny and the Jets

Thank you for the pop acts named after fruit and veg. Today, mixed in with a serious discussion on the merits of various insults, I ask for a similar exercise:

Pop acts that sound like fish. We've had Derek Dick, thanks.

Sunday, November 13, 2005

Sauted for Peas and Wizz

Sauted for Peas and Wizz

* Tina Turnip
* Broccoli Spears
* Mariah Carrot
* Sophie Ellis-Beanstalk

Today, we are mostly looking for pop acts that sound like fruit and veg. Suggest-me-up!

Friday, November 11, 2005

The Eyes Have It

The Eyes Have It

Cruel and unusual punishments at school:

* Cross-country running
* German
* Making a lovely, frilly apron in needlework
* Dissecting sheep’s eyes

I had already been covered from head to toe in mud, the tram-stop of my father is already full of dogs*, my future in the masons was already assured by wonderful use of appliqué, which meant the fields of Berkshire were soon to be filled with sheep holding little white sticks.

I’ve mentioned in previous tales that the science curriculum in our school was at the wanky end of the Wanky scale of one-to-wanky, eschewing the usual fact-based teaching of physics, chemistry and biology for the “finding of patterns” and other touchy-feely crap that set my education back years. On arrival at college, my qualifications were laughed out of the lecture hall when it transpired I hadn’t been taught even the most basic principles of anything, ever.

Thanks for that, useless school science department.

Still, every now and then, we had to do stuff that normal schools were taught, and the sex education textbooks were a pleasing mess of graffiti and strategically placed speed-knobs that would bring a tear to the eye of any Viz reader.

And come the day, we were to cut up sheep’s eyes to see what made them tick. One or two of the more advanced types were already talking about reanimating the creature, and they might have got away with it too, if it weren’t for the unfortunate chain of events that was to follow.

Kathy, you see, lived in a butcher’s shop. Her dad was the village butcher (before all that nasty business with the green stuff that put them out of business and their shop under a Waitrose car park), and the entire family were, well, as well fed as a butcher’s dog. A butcher’s dog that ate nothing but enormous meat pies, forever. Kathy's dad made the generous offer of supplying the school science department with a batch of sheep’s eyes, uses for the cutting up of. And by way of a Brucie Bonus, he also threw in a pair of lungs. A fantastic way of getting rid of an unwanted corpse, if you ask me.

So, Monday morning rolled around, and young Kathy was sent to school with a bloody great plastic bag filled with frozen sheep’s eyes, lungs and assorted spare offal that had been lying round the back room, the kind of stuff they wouldn’t even sell to my mum as “dog meat”. That’s meat FOR the dog, and certainly not what you’re thinking. Though I have my doubts now… The idea of sending frozen cuts being that even on a warm spring morning, they would remain frozen long enough to get to school and into a fridge in the science block. And through years of trial, error and trips to the local casualty unit, the school had found that partially-frozen eyes were far easier to cut in half without taking young fingers with them.

What could possibly go wrong?

Kathy got to school, stepped down from the school bus, and promptly forgot all about her precious cargo for the afternoon’s lesson, left in a bag, Lord knows where.

A light Lunch came and went, and at two o’clock, we trooped into the science labs for the great eyeball adventure.

“Ah Kathy”, said Dr Jenkins, possessor of the creepiest pair of Aryan blue eyes you ever saw, and clandestine recruiter for a league of evil geniuses, “I understand you were unable to procure our ovine visual organs.”

“You what, sir?”

“The sheep’s eyes, girl. You couldn’t get the sheep’s eyes.”

“I did sir! I brung ‘em in an’ I …err… oh.”

“So where are they?”


Search parties were sent out, with strict instructions to bring back any plastic bag contain partially-defrosted offal. Ever the lateral thinker, I headed straight to the school secretary and asked if “any bags had been handed in today. Lost property, like.”

“And what, pray, is in this bag?”

“Eyes, miss. And bits of dead sheep.”

It was all I could do to escape alive.

All the obvious places were turned upside down. The cloakrooms. The dining hall. Smokers’ Gulch. But nothing could be found.

Then: barely registering above the audible – screams. Screams and shouting, getting louder and higher pitched. As we watched, a door burst open in the Old School building, and dozens of first years burst forth, several in the last paroxysms before vomiting, which they obliged in spectacular style.

Of course! Room Four!

Room Four in the French block was where we registered in the mornings. We had all trooped in there, answered our names, and then headed, like sheep to the slaughter to assembly and the weekly talking to on the subject of our sins and shortcomings from His Holiness the Reverend Ratings.

That morning, Kathy had propped her plastic bag of bits against a bubbling old radiator in Room Four, and had forgotten all about them. Four hours on a low heat had eventually defrosted this particular payload, and as they began to cook, a particularly funky smell filled the room. Some curious eleven year-old, torn away from the joys of Longman’s Audio-Visual French**, had gone to investigate, with all-too-predictable results.

We burst in to a scene of devastation.

There were at least three faintings, including Madame Talbot and her tight, tight white jumper. Several survivors were still bent double, their shoes spattered in vomit, while those who could flee were halfway home by now. And scattered across the room, like some eldritch Lovecraftian creature from the very outer reaches of the human imagination, were blood-smeared organs, guts, the wrong number of legs, and eyes, eyes, endless staring eyes.

In the distance, a siren wailed.

The room was sealed off as if someone had brought in ten pounds of plutonium for show-and-tell, and the headmaster made sure that only the local fire brigade were allowed in to hose the place down, who complained bitterly.

The next day, and in a fine example of “waste not, want not”, we each received a scalpel, and a dirt-flecked sheep’s eye.

School dinners that week, however – terrible.

* Der Förderwagenanschlag meiner Vater ist volle Hunden, or words to that effect
** “Ecoutez et rrrrrrepeter!”

Thursday, November 10, 2005

In which the author is not sorry at all

The Thursday vote-o

An explanation for new readers: Each Thursday, I hold a vote in which you may choose - in the "spicy brains" section at the bottom of today's post - which tale of mirth and woe appears on this site the following day . More fun than wrestling radioactive robot snakes, and as degrading as admitting your Condi Rice fetish, this is the kind of thing you end up with if you're not careful. A collected print version is due "soon", for which Mr Gaiman – who I am not blackmailing, at all – is writing the foreward.

This Thursday vote-o also comes with an advance warning: Next week, I shall be in Tunis, being a real journalist, so there will almost certainly be no Friday Scary Story. I will publish when and where I can, but if you don't hear from me, you can safely assume I'm off somewhere wanking myself stupid into a fez hob-nobbing with Kofi Annan and the rest of my world governance homies.

So, for this week, you must choose, and choose well, because African Bum Disease is rife, and I may never done a poo again. This week's quotes come from special guest publication, the TV industry magazine "Broadcast", and of course, bear no relation to the actual story contents:

* The Eyes have it – "And as Carol, her tongue already dancing involuntary spasms, placed the last consonant on the rack to form A N A L I N G U S, it was clear that everybody was going to get a nine letter word. Des quietly wished he too was with poor, poor Richard Whiteley"

* Pole-Dancing – "Michael Winner remembered the exact moment that his dream job in broadcasting disappeared forever – the second Jade Goody opened her mouth in his ill-starred, all-naked version of Hamlet on Channel Four"

* Gullible Twat – "Talk about miscalculating the mood of the British public. As he sheepishly zipped up his trousers, and slipping like a fool in the puddle that was his own mess, Bruce realised that his Strictly Come Dancing days were well and truly over."

* The Operator – "As the programme aired, it became abundantly clear to Jonathan Ross that the show's entire output had not contained a single reference to bizarre sexual practices. He vowed, there and then, never to broadcast again"

Hint: "The Eyes have it" is by far the best one, and is a classic tale of mirth, woe and vomit. Not that I'm trying to force you into anything.


Scott Adams, creator of the Dilbert comic strip now has a blog, and rather good it is too. He writes about things that are not necessarily Dilbert, which is no bad thing, and has open (moderated) comments, which shows good faith in his readership. It is also pleasing to see that he is also: funny.

Adams manages to come up with the one phrase I've been struggling over for the last three years – the entire raison d'etre of this entire site. And it is this: "The only reason I dare write this blog is because I have absolutely no sense of embarrassment." Thank you, Mr Adams, you have exposed me for what I am, and I feel so dirty.

I have wrecked the internet for you, wasted the century's greatest invention, and for that I am truly sorry*. As Cochese told me in no uncertain terms: "That makes me want to shit on Charles Babbage's cold, dead chest." Poo away, fella.

* Not sorry, at all