Tuesday, December 31, 2002

“The Scaryduck Official New Year Message”

Your humble scribe will be spending his New Year’s Eve stone-cold sober on a train somewhere between Reading and Weymouth. With a bit of luck and a following wind, I may even make it home before midnight. Woo.

While we’re all wishing each other a “Peaceful” New Year, may I draw your attention to a couple of statistics. Number one: the number of people killed by war in the twentieth century: one hundred and eighty million, the vast majority being non-combatants . Number two: the number of weapons of mass destruction possessed by the United States Strategic Air Command: far too bloody many.

A Happy and Peaceful New Year to you all, even if the odds are somewhat stacked against you.

After that little slice of misery, here’s something that came to me via the author Neil Gaiman’s weblog. Dead Ringers is a BBC comedy show that hasn’t quite survived the transition from radio to television. One of the highlights of the most excellent radio version is a series of spoof phonecalls by someone pretending to be Tom Baker of Doctor Who fame.

So, what happens when “Tom Baker” calls Tom Baker? A cataclysmic matter/anti-matter collision that brings about the end of the universe, that’s what. Or just a shedload of laughs in which the real Baker's the one having the most fun.

Catch you on the other side. Bring pie.

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Monday, December 30, 2002

"There's a guy works down the chip shop swears he's a Marxist-Leninist Revolutionary"

“A revolution is not a dinner party.” - Mao Tse-Tung, 1927

“Big bag of chips, please.” - Scaryduck, 1982

Mao Tse-Tung
"So that's Cod and Chips twice and a pickled egg"

Your conventional view of history says Chairman Mao died in 1976 after a long, distinguished life at the forefront of the Chinese Communist Revolution. That is, as we all know, a load of old cobblers. In reality, Mao Tse-Tung tired of running a country of one billion citizens and all their petty, personal problems, faked his death and ran off to run a fish and chip shop in the South of England.

Now don’t get me wrong. He was a lovely bloke. You’d find it vey hard to believe that this was the man who had led his people on the Glorious Long March, had overthrown the corrupt government of Chiang Kai-Shek and saw his country re-born in the red-hot crucible of the Cultural Revolution. No wonder he wanted the quiet life. He cooked the best chips in Henley, too, as the long queues out of the shop door would testify.

With decades of Marxist-Leninist revolutionary leadership under his belt, it wasn’t long before the other chip shops in the area withered under Mao’s Great Leap Forward. Only the capitalist running dogs of The Brown Trout (surely the worst name for a restaurant ever) survived, the long queues out of the door of this chip shop testament only to the fact that he cooked every single portion to order. One at a time.

We all loved Chariman Mao, and if he gave his Little Red Book of Fish Recipes away with every packet of chips, the entire population of Henley would have been card carrying reds by now, and not under the jack-booted powers of capitalist oppression that is Michael Heseltine and...err... Boris Johnson.

I actually went to college with Mao’s son Andy, a youth who worshipped the music of Phil Collins rather too much to be completely healthy. He once filled an entire C-90 cassette with "Easy Lover", back to back, over and over to listen to in his car. This was shortly before I bludgeoned him to death with a frozen haddock. When pushed on the matter and threatened with the withdrawl of our trade for the pedestrian delights of the Brown Trout, he finally revealed the one great secret of the Chinese Takeaway.

“Andy,” we asked, “When someone comes in and orders just chips, do you all come out of the kitchen holding meat cleavers and stare at them?”

“Yup. It’s part of the job description.”

“What do you say?”

“I go for the lyrics to ‘In the Air Tonight’. My mum and dad run through the shopping list.”


Clicky for part II of this epic tale of mirth and woe.

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Sunday, December 29, 2002

"Apropos of Nothing"

It's no good, I can't go on like this. I want to be a Ninja, leaping from tree to tree, talking with animals and ...errr... hang on. Obviously, I am in need of expert tuition from a Ninja Master.

Pic credit: Chaotic Illuminator via b3ta.com

Aren't faceswaps great?

Straight from the Scaryduck spam files, two beauties I received today:

Your Bowels Cleaned: A disturbing treatise as to why I should send some bunch of spammers $51.50 for a bottle of washing-up liquid and a funnel. I'll give that one a miss, it sounds a complete washout. Most disturbing of all is the last line: Currently available only in the U.S. and Canada. Seeking Distributors to meet high demand."

See a Horny Teen Girl Do a horse with a 31 inch C*ck it's FREE: Why oh why oh why do these people insist on sending me all this bestiality, sodomy, buggery and all kinds of unspecified sexual deviancy through my mailbox? I can get all that at home, thank you very much. And thirty-one inches? That's a bit on the small side, isn't it?

N3wt: comes with the Scaryduck seal of approval.

Tomorrow (or the day after - it's all very much down to the "I can't be arsed" variable) sees the publication of my latest Scaryduck Nearly True Tale - the unmasking of Marxist-Leninist Revolutionary Mao Tse-Tung working in a chippy in Henley-on-Thames. Very large bladed weapons will be on display for your delight.

That is all.

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Saturday, December 28, 2002

"Excuse me sir, do you have a licence for zis minky?"

I got socks this Christmas. Homer Simpson. In sock form. We also got a whale. A great big stonking Minky Whale that swam into Portland Harbour and tried to kill itself by ramming itself up the beach near to Scaryduck Towers. Repeatedly.Opinion is divided in the Scary household as to why it would resort to this kind of behaviour, but the arguments have boiled down to the following:

* Depressed over the prospect of war with Iraq and North Korea, coupled with a poor selection of Christmas presents
* In-laws coming to stay, forever
* Kurt Cobain in another life
* Repeatedly buggered by Georges the Randy Dolphin, who just can't leave it alone

The RSPCA have done their best for the poor chap, but things just aren't looking too good, and it appears we'll have a dead whale stinking the place up for the New Year. God, I hope they blow it up. We haven't finished the Turkey yet.

Pukka festive Weebl and Bob story HERE.

And finally, let us pray for Our Lord Wil Wheaton's burning wang. Now wash your hands.

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Monday, December 23, 2002

"A Christmas Tale"

Isn’t Christmas lovely? It’s that time of year when families get together, united in love and understanding, to get outrageously drunk and blow each other up. Sounds perfectly reasonable to me.

We always used to go to my Grandad’s for Christmas. He lived in Basildon, a horrible concrete mess on the other side of London where Cockneys go when they’ve had enough of the East End. My dad’s brother and his family also lived there, so you could always guarantee a full house and a pretty lively Christmas.

Grandad was a pretty practical chap. He had a garden to die for, and won horticultural awards all over the place. He also made his own wine, and his spare bedroom was alway filled with huge demijohns (look it up) bubbling away with his latest brew. The peapod wine was his speciality, and had a variety of uses as a paintstripper, patent cure-all and weapon of mass destruction.

Scene: Grandad, Gran, five of us in our family, four of Uncle Dave’s mob, one over-excited dog, all in a kitchen-diner the size of a postage stamp. If one of us wanted to get up, at least four others had to move. If the dog wanted to get up, we all had to go out into the garden. So Grandad opened the front parlour, a room that hadn’t seen human life since 1963 apart from the comings and goings of his gardening trophies and enormous stock of homemade booze.

Ah, but it was Christmas! Gifts were exchanged. My cousin Andy gave his dad a marvellously fat Cuban cigar. Quite where an eight-year-old kid got it from is another matter, but in those days you could send your bairns off to the cornershop for twenty Bensons and a bottle of vodka without the shopkeep even batting an eyelid, but there you go.

What Uncle Dave didn’t know was that Andy had also been to a joke shop on the seafront at Southend, and his cheroot was positively brimming with exploding cigarette ends. Before the day was out, there would be hell to pay.

A quick aside - Andy is the most accident-prone person I have ever met. He was always falling down stairs, off ladders, out of trees or over the handle-bars of his Raleigh Chopper. He had a season ticket for the local Casualty department, who’d always wave him off home with a shout of “See you next week”. He once caught his Johnson in his zip on the beach at Southend and spent the rest of the day having it frozen by hospital staff who could barely stifle their laughs. When he got married, the car broke down on the way to the church, so he arrived on the back of a tractor, with the heap of junk towed behind. He is, of course, a most excellent individual.

The Christmas dinner came and went, Gran catering for the assembled masses like she’d done it for her entire life. Grandad let us kids have one thimble-sized glass of his homemade paint-stripper, and we all toasted the Queen, family, friends and the downfall of the Bay City Rollers. And that was enough for most.

But not me. As the rest of the family snoozed in a post-dinner stupor, I sneaked into the front parlour and helped myself to another glass. And another. And another. Before long, my ten-year-old head was spinning round like a spinny-round-and-round thing, and I was feeling more than a little queasy. It was round about then that my body decided it wished to part company with Christmas dinner.

Page 374 of The Thoughts of Chairman Mao says “You can’t hold back puke”, and how right he was. In panic, a darted around looking for somewhere to spew. The room was filled with Grandad’s best furniture and an impressive looking carpet which was his war-loot from North Africa. If I chundered on that I would be dead meat. Only one thing for it. The Laindon and District Horticultural Society Challenge Trophy. It brimmed. And by God, I felt better.

Holding the cup above my head like a drunken seventies footballer (which wasn’t too far from the truth), I staggered up the stairs and flushed the diced carrots down the bog. I would have got away with it too, if, in my drunken state, I had remembered clean the thing out.

I arrived back downstairs just as Uncle Dave lit up his Chistmas cigar. Laying back in his easy chair, he inhaled deeply, drawing in the sweet aroma of the Cuban tobacco, puffing out smoke rings to the general amusement of the massed throng of the Scary family. In the minutes before the Queen’s Speech and the afternoon’s Bond movie, it was a most tranquil moment. As a matter of fact, even Andy had forgotten about the timebomb waiting to go off.


There was a flash, and Dave was thrown halfway up the wall behind his easy chair with shock as an entire packet of expolosive cigarette ends went nuclear.

Gran screamed “It’s the blitz!”, realised the Anderson shelter had been dug up thirty years previously, and hid under the kitchen table with the dog. Grandad dashed off for his war-loot gas mask and German bayonet. The rest of us collpased in fits of laughter at poor old Dave.

OK, OK so it's Groucho Marx
Uncle Dave: An artist's impression

The cigar looked like he’d just walked into a door as part of some Groucho Marx film stunt. A pathetic smoke ring curled up from the end, a wisp of tobacco clung to his nose. He was livid.

“Right, who's been playing silly buggers?" he scowled, scanning juvenile faces for guilt.

There was only one thing for it. We shopped Andy to him. It was a fair cop, and Unlce Dave eventually managed to see the funny side as a second non-exploding cheroot was produced.

After all the excitement Grandad decided that we deserved some more home-made wine to calm the nerves. I politely refused, finding a nice warm corner to curl up and die.

Two days later, with my hangover still raging, they found the dried up huey in the gardening trophy. Whoops.

Let Uncle Dave be the bringer of the moral to this tale: “Oh yes, it’s all fun and games until somebody loses an eye.”

Unfortunately for me, I still had both my eyes, it’s just that they were hugely blood-shot and refused to look in the same direction for weeks. Kids! Just say “No” to paintstripper!

"Ho. Ho. Ho. Ho. Ho. Ho. Ho-tiddly-Ho."

That's it, this duck is away for a Christmas break with Mrs Scary and the Scaryducklings. And just to show that this is the season of goodwill, I've even got a present for my arch-nemesis Moderately Evil Penguin. Have a Merry Christmas now, y'hear?

Christmas Fish - top hummus by SAMSONITE from b3ta.com
"A fish is for life, not just for Christmas"

Back to Festive Scaryduck

Sunday, December 22, 2002

"Ho. Ho. Ho. Again."

It's that time of year again. Children roasting on an open fire. Drunken neighbours giving little chance of a Silent Night. And that's before you get trampled underfoot by Christmas shoppers in your endless quest for a PS2, snotty little kids in puffer jackets singing "We Wish You a Merry Christmas" at the front door and forgetting half the words, the abject fear of receiving last-minute cards from people you haven't sent greetings to. No wonder the world's going mad.

Then we got this. It's twenty minutes of a crazy nutty bonkers Christmas tape sent in by one of the more remote employees of a small company as a Christmas gift. It's a four megabyte download, but by God it's worth it. Bear with it - it gets better as it goes along. My mind has been left indelibly scarred by a scary, scary version of "Walking in the Air". Karen's Kristmas Kraka - the gift that keeps on giving. I just want my mind back.

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Saturday, December 21, 2002

"Ho. Ho. Ho."

I've made you all a rather nice, but ultimately sweary Christmas card. And people call me a Scrooge. Make your own here.

And if you're looking for that ideal present for an aunt or a grandmother - oh my good God, I've been turned into a clockwork cucumber! (Adult site - possibly not safe for work, says the duck who's got a big pink picture of a nob on his page). Thanks to Lou for the spot. You can get a three dollar discount here, along with a definately-not-safe-for-work picture of me and a close personal friend.

Shiiit n' shit: See this page as written by Snoop Doggy Dogg. Know what I'm sayin'? Tell the truth, it actually makes more sense that way. Get yo' ass over to Ask Snoop and mess wit' your own site.

Find of the Day: TTR2, bursting to the gills with all the junk that's floating around the net. They've turned their crap filter up to eleven and have the only the best and funniest viral stuff for your viewing pleasure. Comes with the all-important Scaryduck seal of approval.

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Friday, December 20, 2002


Ah, the 1970’s. An age of innocence. We didn’t have kiddy-diddling coppers back in those days, and Gary Glitter was still a laughable pop star. You could stilll leave your front door unlocked, and it was safe for kids to play in the street without ending up a red smear across the tarmac. And your parents never got divorced.

Geoff’s parents did. He lived in the house at the end of our street, and one day, after a lot of shouting and banging, his father finally had enough of his mother and went to live in the flat above his furniture shop with someone a little less ugly. It was a bit of a tragedy for Geoff who worshipped his dad, but this was more or less bought off with the number of “guilt presents” his dad would send. He had the biggest and best Action Man collection in the street, including the Holy Grail - Sky Diver Action Man.

The trouble was, he hated living with his mum. We understood. We hated his mum too. She hated us playing football in the street, and would often come running out of her house to try to steal our ball. She looked like the battleaxe’s battleaxe Mary Whitehouse, only with a vindictive streak a mile wide. Geoff decided he had to get away. The poor bastard, we were 100% behind him.

He decided to run away and try out life on the road as a hobo. He reckoned he could get a job in a shop and make enough money to buy food and a roof for the night, and who knows, he might make a bit of a success of it. Pretty grown up thinking for an eight-year-old. Failing that, he could always try his luck in showbusiness.

We all got together - me, Nige, John, Matt and Squagg - and raided our parents’ kitechens for stuff he might need. We got matches, tins, a couple of cigars and a torch which he stuffed into his school bag. He slung it over his shoulder and hit the road.

Being the nice guys that we were, we decided to go with him on the first day, just to see that he’d be alright. We were all heart. And besides, those cheroots were too good to miss out on.

We got as far as the local park, a whole two minute’s walk away. We all ducked behind the hedges and made a camp between the undergrowth and the wall. This was to be Geoff’s first base for the night.

First things first. Fire.

You can’t be a proper hobo without a decent camp fire.

We got together some twigs and paper and lit a fire. Within thirty seconds, footsteps could be heard coming down the path, so the fire was stamped out. And relit. And stamped out. In the end, we’d used up nearly all the matches becuase we couldn’t light a fire in the park without someone noticing. This was going to be a bit of an inconvenience when it came to cooking.

And that was when we noticed a rather small, yet vital detail. Geoff had the best part of our kitchen larders in his bag. But no tin opener. The ring-pull was still two decades away. I was sent home to “borrow” one.

By the time I got back, the lads had had one more go at lighting the camp fire. And how. They’d got it lit all right, but the flames had got hold of an overhanging branch, and had refused to let go. The whole hedge was ablaze, and they were running for their lives for the safety of the coal bunker in John’s garden. I was trampled in the rush, but regained my senses enough to join them.

We hung around a bit trying not to look at the pall of smoke rising over the park. Then we went to watch the fire brigade sorting the whole thing out for us while planning where Geoff should stay the night. We settled for the railway arches, even though no-one thought that he should have packed blankets. Or spare clothes. Or a coat.

It was all pretty academic, anyway.

At four o’clock Geoff went home. His mum was cooking his tea, and she’d kill him if he was late.

He kept the cigars as well. The bloody ingrate.

"Lost Consonants"

Our tribute to the work of Graham Rawle. Let's face it, I don't think The Guardian would print this one. I'm only posting it because it had enough hummus to get me a multiple "Woo! Yay!" on b3ta. The easily offended had better look away now.

The Weymouth Jubilee Cock

"The crowds would flock to sunny Weymouth to marvel at the Jubilee Cock on the seafront, a magnificent erection built to honour Queen Victoria."

I'll get me coat.

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Thursday, December 19, 2002


After the triumph of Am I an Otter or Not?, a eureka moment on the toilet has brought you this: Am I Pie or Not? I'm really, really sorry. Please. Add. More. Pictures.

Your regular blogging will return tomorrow after a much-needed injection of hummus. This will include, at some stage, a festive Christmas Scaryduck tale. The purists will be pleased to learn that this will include a) vast quantities of home-made alcohol, b) explosives and c) the phrase "Right, who's been playing silly buggers?".

Something worth knowing: If the archives on this blog are knacked (as they are now), there is a "Best Of Scaryduck" page here. Say "thank you" to your Uncle Scary. That's quite alright.

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Wednesday, December 18, 2002

"Spicy Brains"

Mittens the psycho kitten returns with a most excellent new animation here. This cat has issues.

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Sunday, December 15, 2002


I’ve got an A-Levels in Applied Mathematics and Physics. They taught me all kinds of stuff about forces, angular motion and the use of Newton’s Laws. Like for example, what would happen to a bicycle being towed down a steep hill and round a sharp bend at the bottom. If only they’d taught me that about ten years earlier...


Regular readers will know that I grew up on a street that was perched on the side of a hill. Being a dead-end, there was hardly any traffic, and we were pretty much free to bike, rollerskate and stakeboard to our hearts’ content without the fear of ending up a red smear on the tarmac at the hands of the maniac from number thirty-eight. Which only ever happened to me once.

Any road up, the fashionable thing to do was to meet up at the top of the road on our bikes, and race down as fast as wee could, only braking at the last second, several hundred yards away just in front of John’s house. No-one wore helmets. It wasn’t as if we were going to fall of or anything...

Webby, who lived at number one, had a speedo on his bike, and we would take turns trying to get the top speed. There was some supreme bullshitting going on, with peope claiming to have recorded speeds in excess of sixty miles per hour. With my legs pumping furiously, I got up to thirty-six. Or fifty-six, as I triumphantly declared when I got back to the top of the hill.

But you know kids. No matter how fast we went, we had to have more. We had to rack up the danger. This was when Matty produced his old bike out of his garage. It had been ravaged for spare parts and had no mud guards, chain or brakes. Apart from that, it was sound.

So how to make it go? Easy. Matty had also produced a rope. He’d tow the little blue death-trap behind him down the hill. It would, he declared, be the thrill of a lifetime. A very short lifetime.

The bikes were prepared. Matty mounted his steed, and with the rope tied firmly to the handbars of the death-trap, like a fool, I jumped on behind him.

Matt pedalled like fury, and as the rope went taut, the rest of the lads gave me a hearty shove-off, chasing us down the hill whooping and shouting.

And this is where those lessons in maths and physics might have come in handy. With the ninety degree bend in the road fast approaching, I suddenly realised I had absolutely no control over the bike. I couldn’t slow down, and with Matty already disappearing round the corner a good thirty feet in front of me, I couldn’t steer the thing either. I was a projectile, under all kinds of forces outside my control. Up in heaven, Sir Isaac Newton was rubbing his hands with glee...

Matty shot round the corner, doing a good seventy five miles per hour by his own reckon. My bike shot round in a huge arc, rapidly approaching the speed of sound, fully obeying all sorts of laws of angular motion into the bargain.

That didn’t last for long. I let out a blood-curdling scream as the bike swung round and smashed into the low wall in front of number fifteen. Angular motion gave way to projectile flight. I was airbourne, proscribing aperfect arc through the air, sailing over the flowerbeds filled with prize-winning roses.

I landed face first on the lawn, creating three yard-long furrows in the grass with my chin and knees. It hurt. A lot. I was carted home with concussion, where I spent the rest of the day hurling my guts up.

The old guy from number fifteen was in apoplexy. He’d spent the last hundred and seventy years cultivating that lawn, just for me to turn it into a landing strip for retards. I was lucky to be alive. He was planning on using me as fertilizer.

The next day, covered in bruises, Matty showed me what was left of the bike I’d been riding. It was so smashed up you could have carried it home in your pocket, and used was was left over as iron filings.

There was a lesson to be learned from this whole affair. Oh yes. It was: Don’t play silly buggers. And did we learn? What do you think?

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Friday, December 13, 2002


Our junior school of the 1970s was incredibly forward thinking. We had our own school buses while other schools still had a man walking in front of a horse and cart with a red flag. We had a swimming pool while our nearest rivals were still jumping in puddles. We also had our own Outdoor Activity Centre, halfway up a mountain on the Welsh Borders years before they became fashionable.

All of this was down to the head teacher, the God-like David George, who loved his school, the kids and the village, and I was stunned to learn he’d died recently. Top, top, top fella.

As far as I can remember, Mr George had bought Oakdale - a clapped out old farm house - for the school around 1970 at some ridiculously low price, which may have included the bartering of some sheep and a pile of scrap metal. He’d done the place up, quite possibly out of his own pocket, in his own time and produced a homely little centre which could comfortably accomodate fourteen kids and a couple of teachers to do the kind of stuff you can’t get insurance for these days.

So, on any given Monday morning, a bunch of kids aged between eight and eleven asccompanied by a couple of teachers would pile themselves and their luggage into a converted ambulance and cart themselves off up the M4 to the Wye Valley.

Our parents tearfully waved us off at the school gate, before running off home for a “Thank God they’ve gone” party. The minibus had wooden bench seats, no seatbelts, and we all piled in on top of the bags, cases and junk. One lucky kid - judged the most likely to puke up - was allowed to sit up front, belt-less, with the teachers. It would be enough to give any solicitor a heart attack.

The Wurzels. Rock'n'Roll stars to a man
Wurzels: Words cannot describe my agony

Mr Morgan - our Welsh wizard of a form teacher - slapped the school’s only music tape into the slot, and we would be treated to a “Now That’s What I Call Fucking Awful” musical compilation for the first of fifty-eight times that week. To this day, I still have nightmares about The Wurzels singing “I’ve got a Brand New Combine Harvester”, surely the work of Satan. And don’t get me started on JJ Barrie “singing” “No Charge”, the kind of saccharine-sweet bollocks that can only drive you to commit murder.

By Monday teatime, following an afternoon’s diversion at the SS Great Britain in Bristol we descended on the house. Seven to a room, be bagsied beds and settled in. Giggling could be heard and an eye appeared just above floor level.

The dreaded enemy! Girls! They’d found a hole in the wall of the boys dorm in the stairwell and were spying on us in the time-honoured fashion. And did we do anything to block it up? Of course not! Instead, Andy squatted down onto his haunches and let rip the most terrifying fart into the hole that only a farmboy like him could manage. It lasted for a good ten seconds and sounded like a motorbike going down the road outside.

There was a scream. “Miss! Miss! The boys are being dirty!”

Yeah, it was OK for them. They’d only been rumbled spying on the boy’s dorm, a stunt they repeated on a regular basis for the entire week. We had to live with the consequences of Andy’s pickled arse. And he didn’t stop. All week. Day or night. And the windows were stuck. In the end, he and his mate Simon were “allowed” to sleep in Mr George’s caravan out the back, much to our relief.

It was a week of doing dangerous stuff. Up mountains, through forests, down caves, over rivers, eating Miss Hilldrew’s cooking. We lived on the edge, and by and large, we escaped uninjured. Whatever the teachers were getting paid for their week of juvenile hell, it was nowhere near enough. We were wild, we were out of control, we were lucky to be alive. So, what did they do to keep us entertained of an evening? Our spartan accomodation didn’t have a TV. They took us down the pub. Corporate lawyer has heart attack...

With our teachers either cooking for the bunch of gannets nominally under their control, or just having a nervous breakdown somewhere private, we were allowed to wander the valley around the house virtually unsupervised. That was a Bad Thing. The sheep were worried, and so were the locals. They knew about us from previous visits, and we were frequently threatened with “I’ll make sure Mr George hears about this!” Did that stop us? What do you think?

Geoff led an assualt on the top of the valley to “see what’s on the other side”. Like adventurers, we followed him up and up through the bracken, heather and gorse, thrashing the undergrowth aside with sticks. Before long we reached the summit and took in the view. There was a telephone pole. And lots of trees.

“You git!” we complained. “We followed you all the way up here for this? It’s like... like... trees!”

He had to die.

Clicky for part II of this epic tale of mirth and woe.

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Wednesday, December 11, 2002

December's Horror-scopes

With all the gun-play that's been shattering the peace of Scary Towers, we completely forgot about this month's horror-scopes. Here we go then....

Aries: A trip to the zoo will open your mind to new horrors. Be sure to count your limbs before you leave.

Taurus: Your life will descend into a pointless imitation of the “Police Academy” movies. Especially the bit with the horse’s arse.

Gemini: Destiny foretells a meeting with flesh-eating zombies at a top-class restaurant. Best order the brains tartare.

Cancer: Your future holds the trappings of a rock’n’roll superstar lifestyle. Just the bit about the rank stupidity and the brain-rotting drugs, mind.

Leo: They say the “Death” card in tarot does not necessarily mean bad news. Not in your case, however.

Virgo: You will wake up in a Bombay Hotel room with a strange scar on your side and an inability to pass water.

Libra: Fortune finds you the key witness in a medical negligence case. Still, you can put those cross-dressing fantasies to good use.

Scorpio: You will find yourself sexually attractive to very ugly women. If you’re a girl, I’m really, really sorry about this - that’s what the stars say, and it’s more than my job’s worth to make this stuff up. Still, take a video camera with you - specialist market, you understand.

Sagittarius: The fame you have craved for all your life is just around the corner. Your night of passion with Mother Teresa of Calcutta, Princess Di, Anna Nicole Smith, and a selection of root vegetables will keep you on the front pages for months.

Capricorn: You’d have thought that nobody gets buggered to death by pirates these days, wouldn’t you? Funny old world.

Aquarius: You will be rescued from a band of gun-wielding penguin terrorists by a heavily-armed group of cockney rabbits working for the SAS. Do not be alarmed. This is perfectly normal.

Pisces: You will not get the fish that you want so desperately. You will find yourself forced into exile by a heavily-armed group of cockney rabbits working for the SAS, and you may resign yourself to a future as a novelty penguin-in-a-bowtie circus act.

If it’s your birthday: You are king of kings, saviour of the world, and you will be followed faithfully by billions. Easter, however, will be a bit of a bastard.

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Monday, December 09, 2002


Greetings, human scum. There's been one or two developments on the People's Popular Penguin Revolution Front since last I wrote. First up, the message still hasn't got through about how serious we are about cooking the duck so we've had one or two pictures done to force the point home. And that's a real gun, not some plastic thing that came with Action Man. At all.

And just to prove how hard we are, here are the massed ranks of the Penguin Liberation Front (Officials) in the steely depths of our underground bunker. Aren't we cute... err.. tough?

Finally, a major victory for the Penguin cause, with our armed takeover of the Voice of the Capitalist Duck-Controlled Propaganda Mouth-piece Radio Scary. Thanks to the bravery of Little Flossie we were now broadcasting to the world as Radio Scary - The Voice of Penguin Liberation.

Onwards to Penguin Freedom! Give us fish or give us death! On second thoughts, just give us the fish.

Back to Scarypenguin, puny humans

Saturday, December 07, 2002


In the year 1823, during a school game of Association Football, the young William Webb Ellis picked up the ball and ran with it in his hands. Not only was the cheating git immediately hauled up in front of his fuming games master and thrashed soundly, he also invented the sport of Rugby and inflicted decades of insufferable pain and wanton violence on the generations of schoolboys which followed him. The bastard.

Egg Chasers
Hold still, this won't hurt one bit

I remember a time when I was actually quite the star with the oval ball. At the age of twelve, I was Mr Prince’s secret weapon in the school team, a nippy little scrum half who could throw a mean dummy followed by a blind-side run to the try-line that suckered the opposition everytime. A scrum to the Blues invariably meant four points, and on one occasion, the joy of being carried from the pitch on the shoulders of my team-mates.

If only they had let me down before they reached the dressing room door. I’ve still got the scar above my left eye. I picked up another scar weeks later, just above the bridge of my nose. This time from American Paul, who having just settled in England was still ignorant of the rules of the game. Any game, in fact, and leathered me in the face with his great size nine boots. And like a fool, with blood streaming down my front, I played on.

Despite this, my love affair with the rugger continued. Dad had me doing all the physical jobs round the garden to “build me up like JPR Williams”, but I couldn’t help thinking this might have had something to do with the fact that he couldn’t be arsed to rake up the leaves himself.

I hero-worshipped the All Blacks, those rugby geniuses from New Zealand and JPR Williams, the flying Welsh fullback with the pork-chop sideburns. I got a real leather rugby ball for Christmas and slept with it in my bed for three months (and we’ll have no smutty comments at the back, thank you very much).

All of a sudden I wasn’t twelve years old any more. By the time me and my schoolmates reached the age of fifteen, me the late developer stayed more-or-less the same size. The rest of the rugby squad had grown to the size of brick shit-houses. Prinny didn’t have the heart to drop me from the team, and moved me further and further back, away from the bone-crunching action.

The last straw came in a practice match. Turnip burst out of the pack, ball resting in the crook of his arm, sweeping all before him. Turnip was a farmer’s boy, used to hauling bales of straw around and didn’t take any shit, not least from the skinny little full back cowering between him and the try-line.

To be fair, I did try to get a tackle in. I dived at Turnip’s thrashing legs, there was a sickening crunch, and that was the last thing I remembered of that particular day. Just like a Tom and Jerry cartoon, they peeled me up from the mud, leaving a student-shaped impression on the pitch and carried on with the game as if nothing had happened.

Prinny didn’t have to drop me from the team. I begged him to drop me down to the bottom group full of fat kids, asthmatics and One-Legged Mike who only had one leg. I could blend in with the crowd there, dodging the half-hearted tackles of full-backs shivering in the mud with their hands up their jerseys, never once worrying about where the next boot in the head was coming from. It was bliss.

And that was the end of Rugby Union for me. It was far too dangerous. Sport was for watching.

Back to Scaryduck

Friday, December 06, 2002

"Send More Fish"

Morning, human scum. Moderately Evil Penguin of the newly-formed Penguin Liberation Front (Officials) here. Still taking over the world and still cornering the world fish market, even without those limp-winged bastards at the Penguin Popular Liberation Front. Splitters. And the People’s Popular Penguin Liberation Front. Splitters.

Our massed penguin army may be slightly smaller than it once was, but the six of us are more than willing to lay down our lives for the cause. Except me of course, being the leader an’ all that. Stands to reason that does.

Any road up, we’ve still got the Duck, and despite our threats, our demands still have not been met. Penguins are still wearing bowties, and that smug bastard Ben Elton is still appearing on television on a disturbingly regular basis. All we’ve had so far is one tin of sardines and some green wobbly bits garnered from a raid on the Kitty Chunks Cat Food factory that we’re saving for when we’re really desparate. Send fish! Or at the very least some of Elton's vital organs. We're not fussy.

Rubber Ducky, you're the one

As you can see from this photograph released through our agent Kennamatic, the Duck is alive and well and hasn't been cooked just yet. But one false move and I'll be getting out my copy of Jamie Oliver's Big Book of How to Cook a Pukka Duck, and it's orange sauce time. And I can assure you that despite what it looks like, there's no funny business going on. We were saving water. That's right. Saving water.

And finally, news reaches PLF(O) Headquarters of Agent Paddles, who has successfully infiltrated Blogjam and will be pecking an unsuspecting Fraser to death any day now and using his credit card to run up a huge mail order fish order. Good work that Penguin.

No surrender! Say "No" to Penguins wearing bowties! Death to the splitters! Death to the oppresive human scum, except for those who work in the fishing and seafood wholesale industries!

Oh, and have a go on this. It's penguin flavoured.

Back to Scarypenguin, puny humans

Thursday, December 05, 2002

"Rear Window"

I’ve got a very good friend in Tony. Six of us all worked in the same office, three guys, three girls, and blow me down dead if we didn’t all get married. Not all together, mind you. Three couples. Nothing kinky. We’d all go round his house for evenings in getting drunk and staggering up the road for a late-night takeaway, discussing the issues that mattered, like football, “Which Spice Girl would you like to pork”, football and what Tony’s next door neighbour would look like with no clothes on.

Tony’s neighbour was a nurse at the nearby Royal Berkshire Hospital. She had curves all over the place and Tony definately never, ever leered at her over the garden fence, something he went to great lengths to mention to Liz, all the time. The fact that she always seemed to wear a uniform that was several sizes too small didn’t help matters much. She was a nineties Barbara Windsor, only without the cockney accent or a gangster for a husband.

It was during one of these Friday nights in that matters came to a head. Tony was in the kitchen sorting out a cup of tea, a tinny and a few snacks when he suddenly became quite excited.

“Al, Rory - come and help me in the kitchen”

“No way mate, we’re watching TV. And it’s your turn to get the beers.”

“Lads. I really need your help in the kitchen. Now.”

“Piss. Off. Tony.”

By now he was jumping from one foot to the other, and it was pretty clear that “No” was not an option.

“I’ll give you a hand” offers Liz.

“No! No! No! Al and Rory only!”

There wass no point arguing, we caved in and trooped into his kitchen extension at the back of the house. The window was built on the side to accomodate another room even further back, and it gave excellent views of Nursie’s rear windows.

Tony didn’t even have to tell us where to look. There she was, buck naked and on all fours, being rogered senseless doggy-style by her current boyfriend right in front of the patio doors. Now there’s something you don’t see every day, unless you’re Ron Jeremy.

The three of us stared open mouthed as her breasts swung rhytmically to each thrust, the look on her face showed that she was having the time of her life, blissfully unaware of the Three Stooges watching on.

“That’s the first time I’ve ever seen her out of her nurse’s uniform”, muttered Tony

“She probably hasn’t got any other clothes, the poor girl” says Rory

“And look, she’s lost a contact lens” I chip in.

“Everything all right back there?” calls Liz

“Uh. Yes. Yep. Yup. All OK. No need for your help. At all. Everything under control. Jesus H Christ, look at those tits!”

Before long, Buck Naked Boyfriend appeared to be sagging, and had the tell-tale grimace on his face as he rammed home the vinegar strokes. They collapsed in a heap on the floor, exhausted from their passionate clinch. It was no good - we cheered. And like a previous voyeuristic discovery several years before, the curtains were whipped closed without even the offer of an encore.

We were called filthy perverts by our wives, which would have been an insult if it hadn’t have been so true. Tony had to put up with several months of embarrassed grins and stilted small talk with Nursie before, sadly, he moved to the North of England, and we to the South Coast. Still, if I ever plan to have an accident, I’ll make sure I get run over by a bus in Reading. You never know...

Back to Scaryduck

Wednesday, December 04, 2002

"Who you gonna call?"

There is a small cross at the end of the garden at Scaryduck Towers, right up against the back wall. There is one word written on it: "Bobby". Who Bobby was, we have no idea as we've only lived here for nine months, but it in all certainty, he probably wasn't a family member. Not a human one, anyway.

Over the last couple of weeks, Mrs Scary and Scaryduckling have both noticed strange things in the kitchen. Twas just a few days ago while Scaryduckling was playing under the table when she saw a set of paws scamper past. It couldn't have been Molly, our neurotic lesbian cat, as she's not allowed in the kitchen so... wwwwoooOOOOOOooooooo part one.

A couple of days ago, Mrs Scary was cooking, when she turned around and saw a small Scottie dog standing in the doorway. "Woof", it said, silently. She did a double-take and it was gone. WWwwwWWwwwOOOOoooooooo.....WOOF! It appears that we've found Bobby and the Scaryducks have now been joined by Scarydog. I've looked under E in the Yellow Pages, and bugger our luck, there's not a local exorcist to be had. It looks like we're stuck with him.

If he gets ectoplasm on the carpet, I'll rub his filthy little nose in it.


Forget fantasy sports, why not play Fantasy Terrorism?

It's coming up to the New Year, so why not treat yourself to a Luxury Shed Calendar? Guaranteed 100% shed.

Yarr! Bob's Week in France Part VI. Titty biscuits!

And thank you to The Weblog Review for being nice to us.

Back to Scaryduck

Saturday, November 30, 2002


I made a solemn promise to Mrs Scary that she would never appear in one of my stories. So this is it.

When we were first going out together, she and I became regulars at The Swan just outside Reading. She liked it because it was a nice country pub, not to far from home with a nice atmosphere. I liked it because the landlady had enormous knockers.

One Friday night, things were going particularly well, and it was becoming increasingly clear that my luck might be in. Like Tom Sharpe’s Zipser in Porterhouse Blue, I realised that I had been caught short, and that I might need rubberised protection of some kind. The kind they dispense from a machine in the gents’ lavatory.

I headed for the bog, pretended to have a piss while the last punter finished off, turned my attention to the machine. It had that funny ha-ha graffiti on the front: “For refund, insert baby”.I was totally out of babies, so I put my pound coin in the slot.

I pulled back the drawer. Nothing. I could see the pack of three TRYING to come out, but it was caught in the mechanics. I pushed the drawer back slowly, hoping that it might fall through, but it snapped back shut before it had the chance.


I tried again with my last pound coin. I opened the drawer, and it was still empty. The packet was almost, but not quite, coming out. It just needed a little encouragement.

I gave it a prod with my finger. It moved but no dice. So I gave it a firm push. It disappeared back up into the machinery and the drawer snapped shut. On my finger. I was trapped. In the gent’s toilets. With my hand stuck inside a rubber johnny machine. Try explaining that one away...

For what seemed like ten minutes I turned my finger this way and that, pushed, pulled, twisted and shook, but I was stuck fast, and if anything it was getting worse.

Then I heard footsteps.

Someone was coming down the corridor towards the gents. I was trapped. Laughter, ridicule and slow embarrassed death was only seconds away.

With one foot halfway up the wall, I let out a silent scream and gave one final mighty tug.

There was an audible CRACK! as my finger freed itself and I staggered backwards across the bogs, regaining my compsure just in time for the landlord to come in for a piss.

“Alright there”, he said.

I wanted to say “Actually, no. The machine’s eaten my money, and now it’s just tried to kill me and I only just escaped with my life.”

So I said “Alright Dave” instead.

That final blood-curdling tug actually broke my finger, and killed of any desire for after-hours activity. I was so embarrassed about the circumstances that I never told Mrs Scary about it, and only saw a doctor the following Thursday when the pain got too much to bear. Even then I told him that “I slammed it in a door”, which wasn’t too far from the truth.

You are the first person I’ve told. Go gently on me.

Back to Scaryduck

Friday, November 29, 2002

"This is Radio Freedom"

Oh Christ - not fookin' Agadoo again

Radio Scary - The Voice of the People's Popular Scaryduck Revolution - La Voz de la Revolucion Popular Espantosa del Pato - La voix de la revolution populaire du canard effrayant.

Broadcasting to the oppressed masses from a secret bunker somewhere in the South of England. No blackmail! No surrender! Death to the capitalist running-dog tyrannical killer penguin regime!

Thanks to Lisa at Burnt Toast for the spot. You can create your own free radio station at Launchcast if you've had enough of my brain-rot.

Back to Scaryduck

Thursday, November 28, 2002

"Fish News"

Good morning puny humans everywhere, your favourite arch-nemesis Moderately Evil Penguin still at the helm while the Duck gently stews over a low heat in a delicate sauce a l'orange. The best bit about being in charge is reading the Duck's referrer logs - his stats page telling him where you lot came from to get here. And what a bunch of manky old spunkers you are. Here, for your horror and delight are the best ones we've seen so far. They are ALL genuine internet searches that brought peole here. Hooray for Google!

* nude tinny photo angel 16 years
* google foursome sex
* fuck farm
* wap search porn beasteality
* goat sex search engine
* eastenders nude pic
* college naked teens parties
* rape wooden pic piss
* about footballer anal tear pictures
* werewolf equipment for rugby union

and my top three:

* trucks it’s just porn mum juice
* big testicles - how hangers - photos

More of this weird shit here, if you think you can handle it.

Right, that's your lot, I've got a daring raid on Billingsgate Fish Market to pull off today in my bid for world seafood domination. Send more FIIIIISH!

Back to Scarypenguin, puny humans

Wednesday, November 27, 2002


Being an Air Cadet was ace. The fools gave us guns. They sent us up in planes at the taxpayers’ expense. And we got off school a lot to visit daft places in the name of building a future career in the Armed Forces. Like, really.

The boss wangled us a visit to a bombing range somewhere up country. In effect, it was just a trip to the seaside at the RAF’s expense with a bit of planespotting thrown in. The RAF even sent down one of their buses and a driver to take us there AND threw in free packed lunches the size of a small suitcase. They loved us.

Hey ho, and off to the seaside we went, singing cute little ditties such as “Balls to all the officers” and various crude rugby songs, the words to which we were far too young to understand. It was a lovely sunny day, and one or two of us were even contemplating going for a little dip in the sea.


Pretty soon we got there. God it was sparse. Through some rusty metal gates we went, guarded over by some poor squaddie who was cursing the moment that he’d ever signed up for this shower of shit. We were dumped by some old Nissen huts at the egde of some sand dunes, looking out over a vast, sandy expanse of beach. The tide was out. A breeze blew over us. Seagull soared over us in the quiet sky. It was beautiful.

Seconds later this quiet was shattered by the screech of a Tornado jet roaring overhead. Down the beach it flew, fifty feet above the ground dropping a bomb right in the middle of the target laid out on the sands.

Boof! Bullseye! Eh wot wot old bean?

We watched in awe as the lads from IX squadron scooted up and down the beach, landing their ten pounders right in the centre of the target everytime. We gave them a round of applause, it seemed only right.

As our triumphant fly-boys headed for home and drinkies in the officer’s mess, the silence was once again broken. This time is was an ear-splitting siren that seemed to foretell the end of the world. Worse.

“Clear the Beach! Clear the beach! Get right back from the beach! Take shelter! Clear the beach!” came a loud voice over the tannoy, rather pressing his point home, we felt. With the RAF dropping stuff on target, we felt perfectly safe where we were, thank you very much.

“Oh shit”, said a voice to my right, which turned out to be our second-in-comand, Flying Officer Abbey, “Here come the Americans.”

A dot had appeared on the horizon. Closer and closer it got, until it was clearly and A-10 Warthog, the backbone of NATO’s defence against Soviet armour, a fact which would keep many a Russian tank driver sleeping soundly in their beds.

Mooresy’s airband radio crackled into life. The Yanks were coming, and the call-sign was “Cowboy”.

“YEEEEEEEEE-HAAAAAAAAAAAA!” the cowboys roared up, down and across the beach at any which angle, dropping a terifying array of expensive weaponry in all directions. They bombed, they strafed, they fired off American tax dollars all over the place in a terrifying display of American Airborne domination that lasted all of two minutes.

The smoke cleared. The beach looked like the D-Day landings with craters and junk all over the place. In the middle of it all was the carefully prepared target for them to shoot at. It was completely unscathed.

That afternoon, they sent over three more lanes to have a go. We hid behind the Nissen huts while they blasted away at anything except the designated targets, or even the beach itself.

“Lads, God help us if there’s a war” commented Mr Abbey on the way home.

And when there was a war, it came as no surprise to find our erstwhile American NATO allies had managed not only to bomb the wrong country, but also drop hundreds of tons of food-aid right onto the enemy lines who had never eaten so well in months.

Bless ‘em, their heart was in the right place, even if their gunsights weren’t. And let’s face it, if it wasn’t for them, we’d all be shovelling salt somewhere in Siberia by now. Thanks, Cowboy, even if we did hear you say "What does this button do?" We promise we won't tell anybody.

"Rip-Roaring Reds"

AS Roma 1-3 Arsenal -- Now that's what I call quite good. No penguins were injured in the course of this crushing victory.

Back to Scaryduck

Tuesday, November 26, 2002


"This is a passenger announcement," said the tinny voice on the public address system. "Due to engineering works between Winchester and Southampton, train services have been disrupted. Please note there is a replacement bus service calling at all major stations to Bournemouth leaving from the station concourse."

No worries. I take my bag and hump it out of the front of the station where the smart double-decker coach is awaiting us. I get on. Immediately I sense there was something wrong. The driver's unfeasibly large sideburns, his bootlace tie and his far too cheerful demeanour were all clues. Then it was the decor of the coach. It looked like a mid-1970s nightclub. The other passengers look shocked, afraid, trapped, with rictus grins on their faces like they've been drugged.

In a blind moment of panic I realised what was wrong. It was the music. The coach resembled a 70's nightclub, because it was a 70s nightclub, and the driver its oh-so-cheeky compere. He loved his music and he was going to inflict it on all of us. At top volume. And worst of all, it was the Black Lace Party Album. The doors silently slid shut behind me. Welcome to Royston Vasey.

Push pineapple shake a tree"

The driver turned to me and asked where I'm going. I reply Bournemouth, a mere seventy miles and an entire lifetime away. This was the Circus of Death, and he was the clown, the tormentor-in-chief. He were at his mercy. Imagine your granny's golden wedding anniversary party. Without the vol-au-vents.

I headed for the top deck, hoping against hope, like many of my fellow passengers that the madness could be escaped out of the sight of our tormentor. But it was not to be. If anything, the music was even louder, and as we pulled from the station forecourt, the Clown turned the volume up even higher so we could be entertained even above the noise of the engine. Already some of my fellow victims looked shellshocked. Several were actually ringing up friends, relations, the army, anybody for help. But it was no good. We were trapped.

"Hooray, hooray, it's a holi-holiday"

By the time we reached Basingstoke, we were already massed together for our own safety. Some of our number had tried to use their Walkmans to drown out the music. It was no good. Even with Led Zep IV turned up to ten, Black Lace still won. They were turned up to eleven.

We hit the M3, and the group huddled on the floor at the back of the coach cracked. It was "Oops Upside Your Head". They had assumed the infamous rowing boat formation and were lost to the world. Tragic. We could only pray for their poor, lost souls and the sadness of their families, knowing that they had succumbed.

"I am the music man
I come from round your way"

In Winchester, our frantic attempts to stop more victims joining the Circus of Death were thwarted by a South West Trains official with a clipboard. Forgive the poor, innocent fool, he knew not what he was doing. By then, we had all exchanged addresses and vowed, should we ever get out of this mess alive, to set up a support group. But it was obvious, my travel companions were losing the will to live. It was every man for himself.

And so Southampton. As The Birdy Song finally sapped the final vestiges of sanity from our minds, I sprung the emergency door just outside the station and ran for my life, telling myself over and over not to look back lest I be turned to stone like some hero in a Greek myth.

"Don't look back. Never look back. They'll be OK. Don't look. Just run."

Somewhere in the south of England is a bus. The driver is the evil clown of your nightmares, picking up innocent passengers, reaping their souls, leaving nothing but empty husks chanting his evil mantra " Y - M - C - A". He will not stop. He cannot be stopped. I survived to warn the world. Be afraid.

"Support your local firefighter"

In 1984, Margaret Thatcher used a strike by Britain's Coal Miners as a pretext to stamp down on the power of the trade unions and destroy the rights and job security of the British worker.

In 1997 and 2001 I voted Labour to put an end to this injustice and bring about a fair society for all.

So, in 2002, Tony Blair used a strike by Britain's firefighters as a pretext to stamp down on the power of the unions and destroy the rights and job security of the British worker. I'm sure some nice Labour Party insider will tell me, but what's the fucking point?

Back to Scaryduck

Monday, November 25, 2002

"And another thing..."

That Penguin out of Batman. You tell tell he's not a real penguin. He's wearing a bow-tie for a start.

Serious lack of ransom. Time to get the orange sauce simmering. Yours in fish, etc...

Back to Scarypenguin

Saturday, November 23, 2002

Duck you suckers

Right you scum. Nobody moves. I've got the duck, and if you don't do what I say, the next time you see him he'll be delicately roasted in orange sauce and this place will be called ScaryPenguin. Catch my drift?

Seems nobody took me seriously the last time I hacked in, so now it's time for rather more forceful measures. Penguins are still being forced to wear bowties in the most humilating manner. People are stil worshipping cute fluffy kittens in direct contradiction to the UN Resolution 1441. THIS MUST STOP! Our demands are as follows:

* Fish. But not Mullet. The hair gets stuck in our throats
* Guest slot on Johnny Vaughan Tonight followed by world domination by next Tuesday
* Zombies. We like zombies
* The destruction of the Catholic and Protestant religions, to be replaced by the Church of Fluffy Penguin
* A season ticket to Harry Ramsden's Famous Fish and Chip shop. Hold the chips

Send money, fish and gifts of pornography to our secret headquarters: Behind the hot water pipes, Ladies' Toilets, Platform One, Waterloo Station, London. It's damn hot here, but you should see the view. Our penguin army is waiting. Cash. Or the duck gets cooked.

Back to Scarypenguin

Friday, November 22, 2002

"You've Got Mail"

We should have learned by the fifth year at school that all our troubles, by and large, were self-inflicted. However which way this particular descent into hell started, bitter experience should have taught us that there was only going to be one outcome. For most of us, anyway.

We had all grown older and not necessarily wiser together. We were too clever and too soft to be a proper gang, yet we still controlled our own bit of turf in the playground behind the music block. Woe betide anyone who tried to play football on our pitch, just as long as they were smaller than us. And that was no guarantee of success. “Intellectual Terrorists” is what Mr Lewis called us, and I don’t think he was being particularly complementary.

How the whole affair started is lost in the dust of history. Mild-mannered Geoff - my best friend as it happens - had somehow managed to get Ju-vid into trouble with “King Kong” Bull, our volcanic headmaster. Knowing Ju, he probably had it coming anyway, and Geoff was probably doing him a favour by drawing the law onto him sooner rather than later.

A Ju-vid prank had the tendancy to mature. The longer it was left to fester, the worse the outcome, and the worse the trouble. Trouble which usually saw us guilty-by-association.

Like the time Ju left a whole tub of fishing maggots in a science lab cupboard, hoping for a quick scream from some unfortunate girl who’d find the wriggling mess. Unfortunately, the maggots remained forgotten and the cupboard was left unopened for the whole half-term holiday. It was opened by Mr Jenkins the following Monday and we was engulfed in a swarm of flies, which unfortunately, were not of the flesh-eating variety.

Ju-vid was fingered immediately, along with the rest of us. Geoff managed to save our arses with the time-honoured “It was nothing to do with us, sir” speech, but Ju-vid was bang to rights: the bait tub had his name on it.

The long and the short of it was that Ju spent his breaktimes writing a fifteen hundred word essay on the importance of the maggot in modern culture, while Geoff got off Scott-free. Our warped sense of loyalties lay with the suffering Julian. Honour must be settled, revenge must be served. Warm, with chips. And I’m afraid to say, it was all my idea.

I had an older friend at college, and they’d just used the same plan to make some obnoxious student’s life hell. The whole concept tickled me, and it sounded perfect for us.

A postbox, recently
The world's campest postbox

We got hold of every magazine we could lay our hands on to aid our filthy little scheme. I happened to collect old newspapers from our neighbours to raise funds for the Scouts, so we weren’t exactly short of supplies. Then is was snip, snip, snip, write, write, write, post, post, post. Every mail order coupon we found, allow 28 days for delivery. All we had to do was sit and wait.

Within days Kays, Grattan and Littlewoods and come good, sending three-thousand pages of lingerie, shoes and girly fashion thudding onto his doormat. That was just the advance guard. Before long, all manner of insurance salesmen were slugging it out on Geoff’s front lawn, closely followed by the guy fitting him up for a wig. Well, we weren’t to know that baldness ran in his family, were we?

He’d only just got rid of that lot when the go-faster spoilers arrived for his dad’s classic 1937 Austin Seven on two week’s approval, and while his parents were still fuming over that, they had to turn away the engineer who came to measure their house up for a stair lift. It may have come in handy one day, if they didn’t live in a bungalow.

Oh yes, Operation Postman was working perfectly. Poor old Geoff was drowning in a deluge of junk mail, unwanted collectors plates, Star Trek chess sets and the finest mail order tat that our new friends at the Franklin Mint could provide. The entire family had taken to answering the door armed to the teeth, waving crosses and garlic at the swarms of salemen. It was ace.

The motorbike, on retrospect, may have been a step too far.

Naturally, it was only a matter of time before we were found out. We were caught red-handed in art class. We were supposed to be exploring the use of colour in autumnal landscapes, but we used this two-hourwate of our lives to catch up with some much-needed coupon clipping. From what I remember, Geoff was due to receive a test drive in the latest Ford Escort, a pile of religious literature, a catalogue of clockwork cucumbers, and the coup de grace - membership of the Revolutionary Communist Party of Britain (Marxist-Leninist), the splitters.

There was no drama. Geoff caught us all with the magazines, scissors, envelopes, and most tellingly, a pile of coupons with his name on them.

With Douggie “King Kong” Bull away on a skyscraper-climbing course, we were marched up in front of the fearsome Mr Marx, a man so hirsute that hair sprung out of this shirt collar, sleeves, nose, ears, everywhere. His hands looked like they were grafted on from a werewolf. He needed a shave, big time. Or at least a good brush-down.

With all the evidence on Geoff’s side, we were, to use the correct legal terminology, fucked. There was only one way out of this one. Every man for himself.

“Nothing to do with me, sir”, said the coward, “I had no idea was was going on.”

And so it came to pass that while the gang was led away screaming to the Department of Ironic Punishments, yours truly was sent away a free man, dismissed by a wave of Mr Marx’s hairy hand. Even Geoff was disgusted. Sorry lads, I have an allergy to polishing floors.

Within days, the Kays catalogue thumped onto my doormat. While I was entertained for several evening by the scantily clad young ladies between pages 213 and 247, I couldn’t help thinking it was to be the start of something terrible. Revenge can be a horrible, horrible thing.

I never paid for the Star Trek chess set.


This piccie comes to me from the most excellent Arseblog. It's a shot of Arsenal's French Genius Thierry Henry celebrating his breath-taking seventy yard run and goal in front the legions of darkness of Tottenham Hotspur. Dial-up beware - it's 238kB, but worth it just for the guy in the GAP top.

THIS is mighty good as well, and comes with the Scaryduck seal of approval.

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Thursday, November 21, 2002

"The Force is strong in this one"

Mark my words, THIS will be all over the web by lunchtime, thanks to those fabby, if totally warped people at B3ta. Might as well get on at the ground floor.

And while we're having a day for linkies, the Pathe News website is a truly outstanding record of the twentieth century's vintage newsreels, chicken and all, now available for public use. Penguins! I see penguins! And dead people!

On the other hand, ARSEiam is actually rather scary. Eyeballs! I see eyeballs!

Finally, inspired by last night's icky televised autopsy (linky not for the faint-hearted), I shall be buying the Scaryducklings THIS for Christmas. I'm all heart, aren't I?

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Wednesday, November 20, 2002

"PiSS II - Son of PiSS"

When I was eight, I carved the word “PiSS” on the headboard of my bed, and suffered months of angst as I tried to cover up my piece of wanton vandalism from my parents. Did I learn my lesson? What do you think?

Less than a year later, I was in the boy’s toilets at school during the lunch break, piece of soap in my hand. I looked in the mirror, the devil stared back. I was tempted. My hand moved to the mirror. And wrote. P. I. S. S. “PiSS.”

"I didn't do it"

I stood back admire my work, and in my horror, I realised I’d gone and done it again. I went to grab a towel to wipe it off, but too late, I’d been spotted by one of the more vindictive kids in my year.

“Oooooh, I’m telling on you.”

And he did, despite my offers to “Be your best friend” or “I’ll give you any money”, the urge to be a stoolpigeon was far too great for Benny.

I spent the next hour hiding behind class eleven, but it was no good. Mr George’s excellent network of spies found me, and I was trooped off for an audience with the head.

Those weren’t the wishy-washy days we live in today when teachers can’t even give kids a good talking to without written permission from parents, police and judge, with a solicitor present, oh no! I got six of the best with twelve inches of finest wood - Mr George’s dreaded ruler across the back of the legs before being torn off a strip about vandalising school property. And it was thoroughly deserved too. He scared the crap out of me.

After my ordeal by wood, he made me stand outside his office for the next hour while every teacher in the school made snide comments as they walked past. It wasn’t the pain, it was the fact that even my favourite teacher, Mrs Jones, said “Who’s been a naughty boy, then?” as she came out of the staff room. That was the last time I had pre-pubescant fantasies about her, I can tell you.

Meanwhile, skulking in the shadows was the dark figure of Benny. He’d been given what for from the head honcho as well. And his crime - being a tell-tale for the thirtieth time that year, making full use of his season ticket for the space by the tuck shop supplies. Justice works in mysterious ways. I reflected on this for the next hour or so, as I doodled the word “PiSS” in the dust. I’ll never learn.

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Tuesday, November 19, 2002

"Fresh Pie"

The Great Pie Drought of 2002 is officially over with part five of Bob's Week in France. A big "Woo!" and "Yay!" with a side order of "Houpla!" for Weebl for staying up half the night to get the job done with nothing but a five gallon drum of Sunny D and our taunts of "You smell of wee" for company. We are, indeed, not worthy.

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Monday, November 18, 2002


Warning! Scary's feeling a bit maudlin this evening as the vast quantities of alcohol consumed in the last twenty-four hours take their toll, hence this piece of navel gazing. He'll get over it. Warning!

I'm not entirely sure where to file this rather shameful moment in my life. It's funny in a certain way, but certainly NOT funny. What the hell, judge for yourself. If you're going to confess, you might as well confess it all...

We were ten, if that's any excuse. We had a rather enlightened headmaster in Mr George, who would often show films or call in special guests for our school assemblies. Trooping into the hall just after nine in the morning to see the film projector set up was always an exciting moment. Sometimes it was something educational, if we were really, really lucky, we got cartoons.

This particular morning, Mr George introduced a nice lady from The Spastics Society, who gave us a little lecture about how some children were born different to us, how life had dealt them a card off the bottom of the pack, as it were. Cerebral Palsy wasn't a phrase in circulation in those days: you were a spastic, and life was damn tough. It was all news to most of us, being generally sheltered from the big, bad world in our middle-class households.

Then she showed us the film. It was a beautiful work, artfully shot in black and white, of a boy's struggle in life against his handicap. It told us the facts, how we were blessed to live a normal life, and how some people needed the helping hand that the Spastics Society provided. The film, I remember, ended with the lad managing, against the odds, to struggle across a room, pull himself to his feet and reach a favourite toy with a smile of triumph. It was wonderful.

We left a hall without a word, a tear in the eye, joyful at the strength of the human spirit in the face of adversity, pain and utter despair.

This air of bliss lasted exactly twenty-eight seconds, when Andy called Simon "a spastic".

By the end of morning break, everybody in a school of 400 pupils had called everybody else a spastic.

"Spastic", "Spas", "Spacker" and other variations on a theme became our weapon of choice for the next twenty years.

Way to go, kids.

Enlightenment? Why yes. The Spastics Society has become "Scope". The word "Spastic" has become "person with cerebal palsy", and much of the stigma and shame has been removed. Both my sister and step-mother have incredibly rewarding jobs working with disadvantaged adults and kids. Bugger it, you have life-changing experiences and your attitudes change.

I no longer call people who get on my tits a “spastic.” I call them a “retard” instead. That’s still a bit borderline, isn’t it?

People are people. And this entry's been rather too po-faced for its own good. Sorry.


Well dip me in dogshit. For the first time ever, an online personaility test actually comes up with the right answer, and therefore wins the Scaryduck seal of approval. Having said that, I can't help thinking the "Dumb Online Quizzes Piss You Off" answer would be equally valid. Can I have both?

What pisses you off?

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Sunday, November 17, 2002

"A duck writes"

Blummin' heck, I go away for a few days, and the place is swarming with penguins in bow-ties. For the love of God, just don't give them fish. It only encourages them.

Today, my head is mostly pounding like it's got a hoarde of tap-dancing Frenchmen living inside. Reason: Arsenal 3-0 Tottenham Hotspur. Oh yes, it was men against boys out there in one of the most comprehensive humpings since the 5-0 at The Lane back in 1978. Scary fell off the wagon last night and got seriously mullered before rolling home in the wee small hours singing

"My old man
Said be a Tottenham fan
I said f*ck off b*ll*cks you're a c*nt"

...in my best fake cockney accent. It was ace. Spurs well and truly sorted out, and top of the league again. Boosh.

Back in the make-believe world, you may know that all this blogging mullarkey is leading up to the Great Scaryduck Book Project. I've written loads, and have even managed to shoehorn in some of the stuff you may have read here, you lucky people. It's got a working title of "Colin and the Dog". Here's a bit which I've got to type somewhere before I forget it:

"Colin spent an entire week's annual leave from the office tramping the streets of Reading looking, unsucessfully, for those bored housewives he had heard so much about. He had made a careful study of certain top-shelf magazines he kept locked in his wardrobe at home, and was sure he would be accosted by some desperate yet attractive woman in her early forties who needed "someone to change a lightbulb urgently", before moving on to the matter in hand. It was only after six days of wearing the leather off the soles of his shoes that he found out that he had one living next door.

Linda had a leaking tap in her bathroom. Linda only ever wore her nightclothes. Linda had a face like someone had set fire to it and then beaten the flames out with a shovel. She scared the shit out of him"

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Friday, November 15, 2002

"A penguin writes"

Right you scum. While the Duck's off flying south for the week, there's gonna be a few changes round here. Number One: I'm in charge. Moderately Evil Penguin and his cohorts of fear, arch nemesis to that big girl's blouse, the so-called Scary Duck. Number Two: There is no number two, an' what you gonna do about that, ya bunch of jessies?

My mission as Moderately Evil Dictator of the Organisation of Moderately Evil Penguins (Officials) is simple:

* Fish
* World domination by the end of fiscal year 2004/5
* A total ban on penguins wearing bow-ties
* The keys to any spare weapons of mass destruction that Saddam Hussein doesn't want any more
* Membership of the Axis of Moderately Evil (currently comprising Laos, Uzbekistan, Venezuela and Burger King)
* Fish
* More fish

Antarctica is already ours, puny humans. Give us the weapons, and our myriad legion with shaprened beaks and none of that penguins-in-bow-ties business will surge forth from their secret bases (known to you as "zoos"), and pluck out the gizzards of the nearest fishmonger. And don't say we didn't warn you.

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Monday, November 11, 2002


A "Kids! Don't try this at home!" Special

One of the advantages of joining the Air Cadets, I found, was that you get to meet a better class of lunatic. I thought I was a pyromaniac, but Ally and Jim were a danger to society. They seemed to know all the best combinations of household chemicals for maximum results, they knew how to rig up all kinds of trip flares, rockets and things that just went off very loudly to scare old ladies.

Jim also had a “mate”, who’d just come back from hitching round Europe, and knowing his interest in the dark arts of exothermic chemistry, had got hold of a little present for him whilst in Spain. A Civil War vintage German Stick Grenade. The genuine article, we were told. The lads soon found out it was a dud with none of ze banging-machen-werfer inside it, but they soon put that right with a concoction known only to themselves and certain Irish terrorist groups.

A small knot of enthusiasts were invited up to the woods around Sonning Common to take a look. And what a bunch of tin-pot idiots we must have looked: combat jackets, Dunlop Green Flash plimsolls and chunky push bikes.

Achtung Tommy Hawkins Englander Pigdog Etc

We gazed on the Wehrmacht’s finest in awe before strutting round the wooded clearing with jerky goose steps and shouting out “Gott in Himmel, Englander” and “Achtung Spitfire” to anyone who might have thought it was funny.

“Achtung!” shouted Jim, as he lobbed the grenade into the centre of the clearing.

With cries of “Fookinhell!” we dived for cover, fully expecting red hot shards of metal to fling themselves towards us.

“Relax, relax!” says Jim matter-of-factly, “You’ve got to pull the pin first”, as we sheepishly picked ourselves up off the dirt.

There then started a game of chicken, where someone would chuck the bomb in the air, and we’d all leg it, still acting the giddy goat, shouting “Die Englander Pig Dog!” from the safety of the trees.

“You lot think you’re sooo clever”, beamed Ally, nonchalantly pulling the pin out of the grenade. It took him a full second to realise what he’d done, where his jaw dropped, and his arms and legs all decided to move in different directions.

“Throw it you twat! Throw it!” Jim finally yelled from about fifty yards away.

So he did, with all the effort that his now jellified arms could muster. It hit a tree with a hollow CLUNK and bounced back to land at his feet, the astonished look on his face giving way to one of desperation.

Galvanised into action, we did what any true coward would do: “Fookin’ leg it!” came the cry, and we took off for the safety of the road, our bikes, Jim’s house, anywhere that was a long, long way away.

As I ran, I was aware of the words “OhshitOhshitOhshitOshit” getting closer and closer. It was Ally, who had finally got both his legs working again, and pumped up an adrenaline rapidly overtook the lot of us and disappeared into the distance.

Seconds later, there was a WOOOOMPH as the thing went off, and a warm glow lit our backs momentarily. Bits of wood, leaves, pine cones, stones and the odd lump of twisted metal rained down onto the clearing. It wasn’t a big explosion by any means, but it would have been enough to leave Ally in pieces up a tree somewhere.

Sheepishly, we headed back to the scene of the crime. There was a small crater, ringed by burning undergrowth, which we tried to stamp out, but it just melted the bottom of my hyper-trendy Green Flashes.

There was a blue flashing light. God knows how, but someone had called the Police.

“Now lads, what’s all this about an explosion in these woods then?”

I must admit, it all got a bit out of control from here on in. We sold the copper a cock-and-bull story about how we were building a den up in the woods an’ climbin’ some trees an’ stuff when all of a sudden, like, we heard an explosion, up in the sky, like, and God strike us down if we’re lying sir, a meteorite landed right near us. Look at the crater, sir, just here. Amazin’ sir. Couldn’t believe it. Is there a reward?

He stood. He looked. He stuck his pen in the hole surrounded by charred grass. He took some notes, and the next day a load of hairy scientist types turned up in a white van and took away all the molten metal bits and some stones. The miracle of the Sonning Common Meteor even made the Henley Standard, and the mystery schoolboys were feted as heroes, but by then we were far too busy hiding from the authorities under our beds.

As far as I know, the “meteor” is now sitting in a museum or laboratory somewhere, or at the very least has been carted off to that huge warehouse in the final scene of “Raiders of the Lost Ark” where it can do mankind no further harm.

What an evil web of lies we lead. The Man’s bound to find out sooner or later. Might as well be now.

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