Tuesday, December 30, 2003

Five minutes away

In true Diamond Geezer style: Famous places within 5 minutes walk of my house.

Portland Harbour - a four square mile body of water on the Dorset Coast enclosed on the west by the natural wonder of Chesil Beach (a tombolo, fact fans: A sand bar connecting an island to mainland or joining two islands.), to the south by the equally impressive Isle and Royal Manor of Portland and to the east by four enormous Victorian breakwaters. To the North are the villages of Rodwell, Southlands and Wyke Regis, all merged in modernity into the whole that is Weymouth. And good grief, all this a rather enthusiastic stone’s throw away from Scaryduck Mansions, along with a good half dozen sheltered beaches of varying quality and nudity.

Portland Harbour has been important throughout history. Known to Iron Age man as proven by settlements on the Island, and almost certainly used as an anchorage by Vespasian as his troops moved up the Wey Valley to defeat the Durotriges at Maiden Castle near Dorchester, an event which would go virtually unnoticed in the town these days.

Henry VIII thought Portland Harbour so important that he built two castles to guard its entrances. The one on Portland has been impeccably restored by English Heritage. Guarding the north entrance to the Portland Roads is Sandsfoot Castle, a crumbling ruin slowly and tragically slipping into the sea on top of a crumbling cliff. It is, of course, by far the most interesting relic.

The two castles were replaced in the 1800s by the Verne Citadel, a stone monstrosity that actually lowered the height of the island by some fifty feet, now known as HMP The Verne, one of three prisons on the island including HMP The Weare, the infamous prison ship. The prisons are now the island’s major employer after the departure of the Royal Navy were established in the 1850s as penal colonies to help in the construction of the harbour’s most imposing feature - the breakwater which now separates it from the sea.

Never far from history, Brunel’s Great Eastern underwent repairs in the harbour after a fatal accident on her sea trials - one of the funnels, apparently, now forms the inlet pipe at the nearby Wyke water treatment plant. And a grave at Castletown is evidence of the only Victoria Cross won on British Territory, that of Leading Seaman Jack Foreman Mantle, who stayed at his post on HMS Foylebank, though mortally wounded and his ship sinking under him. The remarkable story of an ordinary young man just doing his duty in extraordinary circumstances. Hard to imagine that all this happened within spitting distance of your front door. The pillboxes on Castle Cove beach the only sign of more violent times.

Nowadays, the Navy is all but gone, and Portland Harbour has reinvented itself as a minor port for the Channel Islands and Transatlantic cable laying. Brighter days lie ahead with the hope of hosting the Olympic Games sailing events in 2012, and the new yachting academy is just the start of the process.

It is a thing of great beauty, as my none-too-flattering panoramic photo shows*. Scarydog and I just use it for walkies. Lucky old Scarydog.

* Dial-up warning - it's 420 kB, but worth the wait.

The Scaryduck Archive

Monday, December 29, 2003

Junior Police 5

Good evening, and first, an appeal for witnesses.

Were you, or anyone you know, in the vicinity of Piccadilly Circus the week before Christmas? If you were, you may have seen a thrusting City type in his mid-thirties, the worse for wear after an office party, running for a taxi. Witnesses may have noticed this young man, a successful executive at a large Swiss bank, made a final lunge for the cab just as it was about to draw away into the maelstrom of London’s traffic on a busy winter’s evening.

His head spinning from a mix of industrial-grade vodka-based punch and cooking lager, and legs going in opposite directions, he went down like Ruud van Nistelrooy in front of the referee at Old Trafford. Instead of getting Patrick Vieira sent off, all he got was a broken arm, leaving him unable to perform such routine tasks as drive his car, tie his laces or wipe his arse* without the aid of a third party. A tragic, tragic accident indeed.

So, if you were witness to this unfortunate mishap, please get in contact with this office immediately and tell us how funny it was. You could win a cash reward**. We're not in the business of laughing at those less fortunate than ourselves, but in this instance we'll make an exception.

Keep ‘em peeled.

* No change there, then.

**Or perhaps not. What do you think I am, some kind of charity?

The Scaryduck Archive

Sunday, December 28, 2003

Room 101

An occasional series on things that get right on my tits.

No.7: Soaps

The enema of British culture. The trivialisation of life and society into “issues” and the resultant celebration of mediocrity in supermarket magazines with an exclamation mark in the title. And for what?

There you are, bored out of your skull after tea, the children are either tucked up in bed or lying in a freezing heap in the coal hole (hey – whatever floats your boat, I’m non-judgemental), and they drag you in, stir your brains with the big stick and spit you out the other end, and you don’t even realise you’ve been watching.

I don’t give a flying shit about Neighboursemmerdalecoronationenders, but you’re thrown into a world where nobody’s got a real job, no-one owns a washing machine or watches television; and the characters consider themselves lucky if they know who their parents are.

It’s friends, family and social life for people whose identity has been sucked away by the idiot box. And I should know. I really shouldn’t give a toss about Alfie and Kat, but I do. In defence, I enjoy a good laugh at Corrie, simply because it’s such hackneyed tripe.

Consider this. Seven nights-a-week soap-ism means that every single plot imaginable has already been done. “Whose baby?”, “The will they/won’t they romance”, “Who shot Phil?” In that respect it’s like porn. You know you shouldn’t be watching, but you do in dumb fascination. Meanwhile the producers of the grumbleflick action know that every orifice has been thoroughly explored, their job is to make it interesting enough to maintain the punters’ wood.

What’s needed in that respect are news ideas – the bukkake flick of soap-ism, if you will. And I’m the man for the job. Dynasty thought they were being clever with that whole UFO story, and Bobby Ewing can walk out of the shower as many times as he likes, but they were just a bunch of rank amateurs compared to what I’ve got in store for Enders. Take a butchers at these little numbers, appearing soon down Walford way.

- Battle of the Soaps. A concept always hyped up by the red-top press, but never adequately explored. Until now. Let’s do it for real, with knuckle dusters, knives, and lengths of rubber tubing with razor blades embedding in the end. Brookie’s already bitten the dust, now let’s see Corrie vs Enders in the wedding disco fight to end them all as Ricky and Fizz’s nuptials end in a torrent of blood.

Roy Cropper staggers out, blood spurting from his neck, collapsing in the gutter on top of Mo Slater’s twitching corpse as Dot Cotton rakes the Rovers with an Uzi. Now that’s what I call a good start.

- Public Crucifixion. I’m really excited about this one. Nail the bastards up. A big line of crosses right across the Square, all singing a wretched, pain-stricken version of “Always look on the bright side of life” as life slips away. There’s always room for guest stars, too. First up – Ant and Dec. I’d watch that. If there’s nothing else on.

- Zombies! A chemical spill at Walford Cemetary causes the dead to rise from their cold, cold graves in search of revenge and fresh, spicy brains. Arthur Fowler, still in his dressing gown. Ethel and her Little Willy. Mrs Duck’s cousin who got run over by Martin Fowler and married Sonia the Moose on his deathbed. Dirty Den. Ah. You just watch – you just know he’s going to rip the top off Sharon’s skull and paint the side of the Vic with her brains. “Hello Princesssssss…..”

- The Testcard. Bring back the Potter’s Wheel, I say. In this multi-channel age, thirty minutes of that smiling bint playing noughts and crosses with the clown will do the plebs a power of good. They might even start talking to each other. Pigs might fly first.

Stuff it, if they don’t bring back Lofty, I’ll never watch again.

The Scaryduck Archive

Saturday, December 27, 2003


This evening, I shall be seen in public with a company of crossdressers and ne'er-do-wells on a night of song, adventure and debauchery. Yes, dear reader, I shall be mostly attending the pantomime. Pray for me.

It's Aladdin. Or Aladin. Or whatever. Starring someone who used to be in EastEnders, someone who used to be in Home and Away, and not starring some bloke who used to be in Footballers' Wives, who stormed off the set in a hissy fit over the length of his hemline.

Fear not, however. I've been to these things before, and I know that they always, always read out the birthday list just before the start of the second act. Today, December 27th 2003, a small boy from Wyke Regis will be celebrating his seventh birthday, and a card from Mummy, Daddy, Granny and Grandad will be read out. His name is Hugh Jampton.

Have I done a bad thing?

The Scaryduck Archive

Friday, December 26, 2003

Hot tootbrush action

More on the toothbrush, cos it's still officially ace, and electric. This morning, I found that by opening and closing my mouth while brushing my teeth I can a) simulate a charming wintery snowfield on the bathroom mirror and b) play "Wake me up before you go-go" on my teeth. Fantastic.

I am still unable to bring you details of Nigel's broken arm, except to say that independent judges scored it 6.5 on the Kneivel Scale for style, control, damage and stupidity. I shall be seeing himself on Tuesday, where I expect to get an official statement whilst simultaneously taking the piss.

Finally, here is Mrs Duck's Xmas greeting to you all which she painted in acrylics on glass. It took us ages to get it off the screen.

Aaaaaaw, isn't he cute?

Thursday, December 25, 2003

Scaryduck’s Festive ‘Did you know..?’

Father Christmas and Santa Claus have only met on one occasion – on the front lawn of 17, The Cuttings, East Cheam, Christmas Eve 1997. The ensuing melee resulted in both being bound over to keep the peace for a period of six months by Croydon magistrates. Tragic.

I got a toothbrush. It’s ace.

The Scaryduck Archive

Wednesday, December 24, 2003

The Christmas Post

A big Woo! Yay! to my father, Professor Scaryduck, for giving me the Book of Crap Towns as an early winter solstice present. I was dismayed, however, to find that Dorchester - the most apathetic town in the country - was missing from the top fifty, mainly because no bugger could be bothered to write in. Portland was also missing as they're not allowed pens up there. C'est la vie.

Also missing, and experienced first hand on my Cornish adventure, was the town of Penryn. A town so dire it exists only as a warning to others. The only industry since the collapse (quite literally) of the port is a large laundry, which apparantly serves nearly every hotel in the South West, and a warehouse of an Asda supermarket, which has replaced the derelict High Street as the centre of the universe.

It is a place where shell suits, Top Man jumpers and mullets vie with little old ladies for the last bargain roast dinner in the cafeteria, a sight of epic comic proportions. A place where Care in the Community comes to life, in the shape of the frightening "Adsa Greeter". A place where the only thing left in your pointless life is to await the arrival of the Grim Reaper.

Penryn. It's worse than Basingstoke.

Now, I fully expect you to stick up for your home town. If you dare.

* I have been warned - on pain of death - not to mention the circumstances surrounding my brother's broken arm. Get well soon, bruv, hope it doesn't hurt too much.

Can I say Happy Christmas now? Happy Christmas.

The Scaryduck Archive

Tuesday, December 23, 2003

Return of the Grockle

Bollocks to this, I'm back from Cornwall.

While I was down there, I heard news that the Dutch government is planning to open their own version of Cornwall's most successful tourist attraction. It will feature, in several themed domes, the history of cheese making in the Netherlands and will be called The Edam Project.

I'll get me coat.

The Scaryduck Archive

Friday, December 19, 2003

Christmas Party Hell

A festive tale of mirth, woe and shameless references to lady-love

Hoe. Hoe. Hoe.
Hoe. Hoe. Hoe.
Nineteen Eighty-Five, nineteen years of age, straight out of college and the world was my oyster. So why in the name of God did I end up getting a job in the dole office? The answer was simple. The lower rungs of the civil service is the career of choice for the world's low flyers, and I was lazy, living at home and it was easy beer money.
In fact, I had been signing on for two weeks when they stopped my money for being lazy, living at home and after easy beer money, so I asked them if they had a job. They didn't even bother with an interview. There were, after all, millions of unemployed, but very few willing to work in the stinking hell hole of Reading DofE.

I would be lying if I said I hated working there. The place was full of characters (mostly ultracrepidarians on the other side of the glass, smelling like a dead goat), you could spend three hours at lunch and nobody would notice, and being in charge of the outgoing mail, you could slip all your personal post into pre-paid OHMS envelopes and save yourself a fortune. I also looked myself up on the computer system and changed my previous work details from "layabout" to "gigolo". Nobody noticed. I also managed to pass on instructions to the guy who was fitting my bathroom as he came in to sign on one morning. How handy.

The management was almost entirely female. Sandra was the head of New Claims a notorious lesbian with an enormous chest, whose department seemed to be staffed almost entirely by leather clad dominatrices [I actually had to look this up] and a former milkman called Roger. Julia, my manager was a never-been-touched sweet thing, a career civil servant of indeterminate age anywhere between 25 to 55, resembling a maiden aunt who always gave you a book token on your birthday. The downtrodden men of the department speculated that she'd go like the proverbial shithouse door given a jump-start, but no man was brave enough to go there. The whole set-up made a young lad like me, just emerging into the world, a tad... confused.

We had just got round to discussing the finer points of Differential Geometry and its implications for the Flat Earth Society when Julia commented that we really ought to be organising "a nice meal or something for Christmas". So, with Yuletide approaching, we sat down and asked ourselves the question: "How can we, with misery stalking the streets and four million on the dole, consider getting stupidly drunk and party like it's 1999?" Then we said "Fuck 'em", and ordered in the booze for the party of them all.

Okay, so a bunch of drop-out civil servants in Top Man jumpers and Chelsea Girl outfits weren't exactly going to tear up the office with bazzin' sounds and lines of Bolivian Marching Powder, but armed to the teeth with an Amstrad stereo and cheap cider, we were going to give it our best shot. In the grand scheme of small civil service parties, it was going to be the spangliest spangly thing that ever spangled.

It was Friday afternoon when we pulled down the shutters on the public floor, kicked out the last of the vagrants, mutterers and an old boy who'd having raging nonsensical arguments with himself ("....so I said to him, "So I said to him, 'watch it, Graham, you'll knock the crust off'... That's nothing, jackdaws love my big sphinx of quartz") confiscating their bottles of Woodpecker for "future reference", and it was upstairs to the office for the big shindig.

The party had obviously been planned by men. The music was the hardest bad-boy rap available, and a thoughtfully provided tape of soul classics was thoughtfully thrown out of the window onto the roof of a bus. The desks heaved with lager, wine (for the ladies) and cheap cider (for any vagrants that happned to be passing). The buffet, on the other hand, consisted of a catering-size sack of salt and vinegar crisps, some biscuits and four sausage rolls. Expecting a feast, we had all skipped lunch. Arse. Still there was always alcohol.

Nothing for it. Drink? Why thank you! Drink? Ooh, ta very much! Another drink? Wa-hey! Drinkie? Yesh mate hic! In a homage to Grommit, I managed to contrive an apparatus, where drink and food could be passed to me on the trolley normally used to ferry claims around the office, without my having to move from my seat. A triumph of alcohol-driven inspiration that a) attracted admiring looks from the dominatrices and b) prevented my booze-fuelled collapse by a good hour.

This went on for a good couple of hours, and before I knew it, with my teenage drinking muscles not yet fully developed, I was as pissed as a little beetle. And with my stomach sloshing around with beer, cider, the odd dash of girlie wine and fistfuls of crisps, it would only be a matter of time before I yarked it all up again.

It had all started so well. I wasn't the slightest bit queasy as I found myself deep in conversation "I always use a rotavator - hic!" with one of the New Claims dominatrices, one Ms Belle de Jour, rather fetchingly attired in a low-cut red leather number with lacing up the side. I had just finished buttering a Jacob's cream cracker on both sides when she kindly suggested that I stop talking to her heaving bazoom, whilst rubbing my thighs in the Vic Reeves stylee, that things took a turn for the worse. The entire contents of a small branch of Threshers was welling up inside me. Grim.

Drunk, head spinning and confused, I completely forgot where the gents' toilets were. I staggered through the first door to hand, which just happened to be the ladies', a bizarre mirror image of the gents only with a comfy sofa where the pubic hair-encrusted urinal trough should have been. And there was Julia, my sweet, lovely never-been-touched manager who had pictures of fluffy kittens on her desk. However, she wasn't paying too much attention to my drunken appearance, mainly because she was indulging in a bout of frenzied tonsil-tennis and up-the-jumper fumbling with Sandra the Evil Head of New Claims. The sort of girl-on-girl action that would make even Edwina Currie blush, and she's been round the block a few times, the old slapper.

"Brup", I said in surprise and alarm, then lost for something civil to say, "Isn't it lovely in the Brecon Beacons at this time of year?"

Now, as a feckless teen, I had a plentiful supply of gentlemen's interest journals hidden in the bottom of my wardrobe, and even in my drunken fug, knew what to expect in the circumstances. To whit, an invitation to join in, a long exhausting evening of "curing" the wayward ladies, followed by a letter starting "Dear Fiesta, you won't believe what happened to me the other night..." My mind worked overtime at the possibilities this scenario could produce, mostly involving myself as stud and office horn-meister.Those Fiesta sub-editors wouldn't know what hit them: "I couldn't believe my luck.As she sucked on my chipolata, I enjoyed a bit of lovely stuffing." I glazed over with a dreamy smile on my face, but by the time the three of us were naked, the moment had passed.

Instead, I bowked rich brown, crispy vomit all over their legs, which rather put a dampener on the whole occasion, and the resulting screams made me fear for my life. "Dear Fiesta... ah forget it."

In an attempt to sleep it off an a nice, quiet office, I managed to mark my card further by bowking rich, brown vomit over the office manager's Territorial Army uniform, which featured far too many leather straps to be strictly official, just hours before she was due at the annual Christmas service. To make things even worse, this occured literally seconds before she arrived with some strapping chap on her arm saying "We can do it on my desk, nobody will find ou...".

I fled, staggering off into the night, bowking rich brown vomit all over the 18.12 to Twyford. I must have arrived home in the Beer Tardis as space and time became a complete mystery, as was most of the weekend, was was spent shouting to Huey and Rolf down the big white telephone, looking like I had been dragged through a tunnel full of turds and wasps. Repeatedly.

The vow was made. I'll. Never. Drink. Again. Ever. I'm shit at vows.

I returned to work on Monday to embarrassed looks, enraged managers clutching dry-cleaning bills and a certain anti-hero status. I managed to stay in that job for another six weeks before the shame and the dreadful scenes of lust and woe I had witnessed (all subject to the Official Secrets Act) forced me to resign. The civil service could stick it. So I went to the job centre, and got another job. In the civil service. Bumhats.

Edit: My first ever b3ta front page! Woo! Yay! Houpla! Panowie!

The Scaryduck Archive

Thursday, December 18, 2003

Random acts of animal cruelty

You may have heard of the cult web site Cat Scan, where readers were urged to sit their feline friends on their scanner and send in the results. Arses to that. We've upped the ante. Welcome to Bunny Scan. That'll learn the carrot-munching bugger.

In the interests of our ongoing research into unspeakable cruelty, we urge you, dear reader, to send in your own pictures to the usual address. (Send us a megabyte-sized .bmp, and we'll personally come round and tough you up like a ginger step-child). Unwanted Christmas gifts for the best one!


Congratulations to all the winners of the Guardian British Blog Awards, of which a certain duck was one of the judges. A special "woo! yay!" to Belle de Jour for her triumph in the Best Written category which I was judging, even if, admittedly, she was not my choice.

My winner? I couldn't possibly comment. *cough* Late Bland *cough*


This week there is a limited shortlist for tomorrow's Scary story:

* Christmas Party Woe: A tale that features not only copious amounts of booze and vomit, but also real live lesbians!

The usual shoehorn-in-an-inppropriate-phrase challenge applies though. I shall endeavour to find a place for “Dragged through a tunnel full of turds and wasps,” as mentioned by Sean Lock on Room 101 last week, as it tickled me. Suggest-o!

The Scaryduck Archive

Wednesday, December 17, 2003

Bastard Son of a Peasant

Forgive me father, for I have sinned. I have knowingly and without shame taken part in role-playing games. With huges books of rules and weapons, character sheets and dice with more than six sides. And I’m not ashamed of the fact either.

I blame, as always, Balders. He introduced us to a space RPG called Traveller which we played across his dining room table along with drink, takeaway food, drink and painful, unpleasant death. I remember my limp body being thrown repeatedly against a forcefield on a ship full of alien spunk until it blew up, taking everybody else with me.

My brother, on hearing this news, summed it all up succintly: “You bunch of sad wankers.”

But it was not enough. Soon, I fell in with another bunch of over-educated layabouts, and we started playing a game called "En Garde!" By post. That's right, not man enough to go out and meet people, we actually played by post. EG! is neither space nor Middle Earth dungeon, rather France in the time of Louis Quatorze. The premise is simple: arrive in Paris as a raw D’Artagnan type, and fight, toady, shag and double-cross your way to the top of the greasy pole, whilst remaining, deep down a sad bastard with a thick rule book and a zip-up Monster Munch pencil case of multi-sided dice.

One of the unwritten rules of the game is that your character’s name must include a dreadful pun. Hence legions of Duncan de Baucheries, Rennes O’Clios and Gordon Zolas. I kept mine to the point: Pompt de Pompt-pompt. He arrived in the big city, the lowest of the low - the bastard son of a peasant - and stayed there. It was only after six months cheating death at the front, that his infamy and fortune were secured with a knighthood and a big sack of booty. Time to get back to Paris and get laid.

I specialised in two things - boinking other players’ mistresses while they were away, fighting at the front for King and country; and robbing other players’ houses while they were away, fighting at the front for King and country. I was, it has to be said, a bit of a bounder. It was also the only sex I was getting outside of my left hand.

The most difficult part was the “female companionship” rule. You had to be seen in public at least once a turn with one of the local female nobility on your arm - going under the groan-making name of Helen Highwater or suchlike - otherwise you’d lose status for “enjoying the company of men”. At the same time, you’d still have to visit your club, toady to royalty, do your regimental duties, and still remember to get up at dawn to skewer your enemies on the duelling grounds. This left precious little time to be a bastard, but you know, needs must and all that.

Pompt came to a messy end. Uncovered as the Purple Vegetable, a robber, cad, all-round bad guy. A spy for the Spanish AND the British whilst sharing the bed with half the high-born mistresses in Paris, they queued up six deep to hack him to death on the Champs de Mars. His last words were “Hey! Mind where you point that thing, you could have someone’s eye out.”

And that ends my confession. I know the score - three Hail Marys and 3d12 damage. I won’t do it again. Honest.

Cluedo, anyone?

Post of the Day

FunJunkie on tanks. And monkeys. And monkeys in tanks.

The Scaryduck Archive

Tuesday, December 16, 2003

Letters to the Editor

Sir -

So, Palace officials are trying to hush up Prince Charles’s kinky fetish of shouting abuse through letter boxes, dressed in nothing but a pair of old wellie boots and an old sock tied round his scrotum, are they?

Perhaps taxpayers’ money may be better spent than on building the entire village of Poundbury in Dorset - touted as His Royal Highness’ idea of an idyllic community - and housing it with people either too deaf or confused to understand the cries of “Vicar felching” and “Earl Spencer blows goats!” coming through their front doors.

Does Blair’s foolish and short-sighted government think it can pull the wool over our eyes, allowing the Prince to indulge his little pecadillo without fear of violent persecution from right-minded people such as myself? What this country needs is a return to the public school system, where a little forced buggery and routine tranvestism never did me any harm.

I am not mad.

Yours etc,

Lt Col Winston St John Cholmondeley-Cholmondeley Patel (Mrs)

Scaryduck’s ‘Did You Know...?’ No. 327

A big screen version of cult TV classic “The A-Team” is to be sponsored by a famous breakfast cereal company. At the end of the movie after the bad guys have been roundly defeated by means of a series of loud non-fatal explosions brought about by everyday household implements, Hannibal Smith is contractually obliged to say “I love it when Alpen comes together.”

The Scaryduck Archive

Monday, December 15, 2003

Your one-stop cut-and-paste conspiracy theory

So, American forces have finally captured Saddam Hussein, the murderous despot who has been on the run since Iraq fell to coalition troops earlier this year. Or did they? Our analysts at the world famous Tinfoil Helmet Research Lab have identified the wrecked old man pictured left not as Saddam, but as a homeless derelict from Neasden known at the local Threshers wine shop as “Jimmy”.
After literally seconds of research, the strange argot spoken by the so-called “Saddam”, missing from the Salvation Army hostel and local railway arches for the last two weeks, has been identified by our linguistic expert. “Spooky” Flangebender (owner of a disturbingly large collection of faked Gillian Anderson porn) was forthright. “This is not Gulf Arabic as we know it. This can only be the little understood dialect of ‘Drunken Muttering’. The language of the streets at eleven o’clock on a Friday night, face down.”

Indeed, his first comments to his American captors after a first bath and shave in seven years is telling: “Ye’re me best mate - HIC! Hae ye the price o’ a cup o’ tea? Ye wouldn’ give me a fiver for me train fare back hame, wudya? BLaaaarGH!”, followed by a barely comprehensible chorus of “Flower of Scotland”, taken by CIA interrogators as a thinly veiled denunciation of Western Yankee Infidel Imperialism.

The jury is out. Who killed JFK? Is Elvis alive on another planet? Did Princess Di fake her own death to live in a lesbian love nest with Mother Theresa? (Answers: No, No, No). But is Saddam sunning himself in Miami while a drunken Scots tramp slumming it in Neasden takes the rap in return for all the meths he can drink?

We can only conclude that this man was not discovered in a hole in the ground, rather than the arsehole of London.

Ah Bumhug

Apropos of my recent rant on over-the-top Christmas decorations, I was visiting friends in Sonning, so we just had to drop in on this place.

Both awe inspiring and the most tasteless display of bling you could imagine, the narrow tree-lined road was jammed with pilgrims to view the Five Megawatt Miracle on West Drive. We had journeyed from Weymouth (although with other motives, admittedly), but after asking around I found several families from West London, Ruislip and Oxford, all coming for the sole purpose of paying homage at the alter a tack. In the words of our lord, Monty Python: “Led by a star? Led by a bottle more like!”

It was, on reflection, a deeply religious experience if all the “Oh my God”s were anything to go by. In all the neon glare, the birth of sweet baby Jesus was all but forgotten. Instead, they bowed down before a ten foot inflatable Homer Simpson. Christ on a bike, indeed.


The Scaryduck Archive

Friday, December 12, 2003


The humble pear
What in the name of Bacchus was Pomagne all about then? For the uninitiated, Pomagne was some kind of sparkling pear flavoured fizzy thing pumped up with donkey flatulence that came in champagne-style bottles, pre-dating alcopops by several decades and designed to look sophisticated. In all my years as a committed boozer, I never, ever saw it in the shops, but they gave away crates of the stuff at school and village fetes up and down the country. There must be warehouses full of the stuff that the manufacturers can’t shift, instead offering it up to Round Tables, school fundraising committees and bottlers of paint stripper on the cheap just to cut their losses.

Pomagne, then, was a fixture at our school Christmas Fayre. You bought a ticket, the Pomagne guy spun the arrow, and if your number came up you won a bottle. Eight to one chance, simple as that. For the princely sum of twenty pence, you could get your grabbing teenage hands on three quarters of a litre of nine per cent proof sparkling pear flavoured wine substitute, and the powers that be were none the wiser.

"You are over eighteen?" he'd ask.

"Oh, yes," we'd reply in our deepest voices, lying through our teeth. I might as well have said "Michael Barrymore used to be my butler", and the old duffer would have asked for an autograph.

Kids won gallons of the stuff, and soon a drinking den was set up in an unused classroom, where dozens of eleven to sixteen year olds spent the afternoon getting completely and utterly arseholed. As you can imagine under these circumstances, vomit was a feature. Lots of it. While some kids were quite content to sit in a corner, clutching six bottles of their booty, taking generous swigs before lapsing into unconsciousness, others began to sing, fight, and go on drunken tours of the school, pissing into bins and trying to round up players for “the world’s biggest game of strip poker”.

Safe in our den of vice, we knew we were safe from the powers of teacherdom, just as long as no-one spilled the beans. Everything's going to be just fine unless...ah. Benny had gone missing. It would only be a matter of time before the shit hit the fan.

The big, stinking splat of dung against ventilator came during the Grande Olde Christmas Raffle draw - the climax of the whole event, where, as usual, some four year old speed demon would the first prize of a motorbike and a set of steak knives.

Benny stood at the front, clutching his tickets in his left hand, half empty bottle of Bulmer’s finest pear flavoured sparkling wine substitute in the other. He swayed slightly as if blown by a gentle breeze.

“And the second prize winner,” announced the Headmaster, rummaging in the barrel of carefully folded tickets, “is.....”

We never found out who won the second prize.

“Blaaaaaaaaaargh!!!!!!!” said Benny as fruit flavoured vomit surged all over Bull’s feet and legs.

Shocked silence.

“Sorry sir.”

An all-teacher hit squad turned over the Kids’ Speakeasy, where the World’s Biggest game of Strip Poker had just reached a crucial stage. Disgracefully, one nameless teen pervert was discovered on the tug, while others greeted the invasion of authority with cries of 'Fuck you, and the horse you rode in on'. Bleary-eyed and retching pupils were led away to an uncertain fate, the local casualty unit, and in one case the fire station who commented "We'll never get that broom handle out of there, sonny." The head put a ban on anyone even mentioning the whole affair at school the next week. So everybody knew about it, then.

At the following term’s Summer Fayre, I won six bottles of Pomagne. The Speakeasy was in the gym store room. I can’t remember who won the strip poker this time, but after I made a fatal spelling mistake on Ye Secret Mappe to Ye Grande Pisse-Up, (Hint: Don't sign it with your own initials) I did get a whole week of detention instead. Arses.

The Scaryduck Archive

Thursday, December 11, 2003

The festering season, again

Is this the most evil song in the history of the world? Marilyn Manson couldn’t have written a more menacing lyric...

You better watch out
You better not cry
He's making a list and checkin’ it twice
Gonna find out who's naughty or nice

He knows when you are sleeping
He knows when you're awake
He knows when you've been bad or good
So be good for goodness sake

Christ on a bike, he sounds a right nutter, there’s no way I’m letting him near my kids. Charlton Heston was right, I’ve gotta defend my family. I’m gettin’ me a shooter.

Look out for my good self and other infamous bloggers talking out Christmas in Web User magazine. We even got paid for it. In booze.

Time of the Month

I've been a busy boy this week, so there are no less than five Scary stories to choose from for tomorrow's epic:

* Top Shelf - Drink woe
* Pomagne - Teenage drink woe
* Inflatables - Blow up woe
* Brains! - Rising from the dead woe
* An Inspector Calls - Gross-out woe

Speak your brains - vote-o!

The Scaryduck Archive

Wednesday, December 10, 2003


Oh good grief, I finally plucked up the courage to reply to a spammer. He reckons he’s Serbian and hiding in Switzerland, which is perhaps why his e-mail originated in South Africa. Just his luck he spammed someone who spent most of the 1990s covering wars in the Balkans from the safety of a swivel chair several thousand miles away.





To which I replied:

Dear “Boris”

Glad to hear from you and I hope you are well. Next time you send this spam out, you may like to mention that old Slobodan was:

1) actually president of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. You will find that the President of the Republika Srpska-Bosna was Radovan Karadzic who now makes his living as a Father Ted lookalike.
2) overthrown by his own people after an election-fixing scandal rather than by US intervention. Hard to believe in this day and age, but there you go.
3) a murderous self-serving bastard.

You may also like to know that Slobodan’s son is actually called Marko, a useless playboy with a penchant for destroying fast cars. The family money instead went to his rather ruthless daughter Mira, who controlled a large import/export empire and undoubtedly has stacks of cash and guns hidden somewhere, probably not a million miles from your Swiss hideout! Get your facts right.

Yours, Scary.

I await his reply with bated breath. This could be the start of a new hobby, culminating in the forcable removal of one or both of my kidneys.


Jemma Jacobs' second prize winning story "If it's brown don't drink it down" is now on Robber Rabbit, my other other blog in all its alcoholic glory. Enjoy.

The Scaryduck Archive

Tuesday, December 09, 2003

Letters to the Editor

Sir -

Once again I read in my morning edition of the Daily Fascist (a fine publication, though a tad too left-leaning for my liking), that our taxes are being wasted on uneducated lesbians, single parents and our Commonwealth bretheren, squandering our hard-earned money on “support groups”, “advice centres” and “food”.

What about us pensioners? We here at the Napoleon Bonaparte Secure Unit are of one mind (or three at the very least) that we are SICK and TIRED of it, and I was only saying to Lord Fanshawe-Nobling over foix gras and a fine champagne what a rough deal we OAPs get these days.

Instead of this so-called War on Terror, perhaps Mr Blair should be fighting the enemy within - single parents, the workshy, those who went to comprehensive schools and anyone who cannot prove Aryan descent for five generations.

Round them up, I say! Kill them and sell their carcases to the French as horsemeat, they’d be none the wiser. Maybe then, and if they allow me to use a crayon, I may consider voting for Mr Blair and his shower.

I am not mad.

Yours etc,

Lt Col Winston St John Cholmondeley-Cholmondeley Patel (Mrs)


Big thanks to Mark France for the brand new banner you see above. Woo!

The Scaryduck Archive

Monday, December 08, 2003

The Festering Season
Congratulations to Dorchester in Dorset, not six miles away from Scaryduck Towers, voted the Worst Christmas Lights in Britain for the third year in a row. A display of parsimony that would have delighted Dickens’ Ebeneezer Scrooge. Our picture shows the actual lights on South Street in the town made famous by Thomas Hardy. Oh, the humanity!

Spray-can philosophy

There’s grafitti and there’s grafitti. There’s mindless tagging by that guy Zzzyzz who does nothing but tour railway lines and underpasses with his paint tin, and there’s proper, good old fashioned grafitti with a proper, good old fashioned message.

On a railway bridge just outside Poole is the word “BITCH” in red paint and foot-high letters. It’s there, it’s iconic and you just can’t miss it. For years, I used to drive under a bridge in Reading on the way to work which was daubed with the words “Keli loves Bros”. She’s probably gone off them by now (unless she’s a mentallist), the tramp who lived under the arch has died, but the words are still there. Some bastard, however pained over “Fat Nobodies in Company Cars”, which summed up the Thames Valley corporate commuting experince in five words.

Get it here
Clicky to embiggen
However, I consider myself fortunate, nay priveleged, to live not two hundred yards from this potentially libellous daubing. And a fine, fine work of art it is. Just take a moment to admire the time and effort that went into this slogan. The steady hand, the straight, well-proportioned lettering, screaming at you like the front page of the Sun.
This is no half-educated quarter-wit. This is a highly planned and perfectly executed message to the people of Weymouth from someone who clearly thinks that you really, really need to be told that Lee Spencer wants a go on your bottom.

Either that, or he supports Fulham.

The Scaryduck Archive

Friday, December 05, 2003

Bad Dog

Most of us are born with the full set of limbs, each with five toes or fingers at the end of each one. Lucky old me, then, as I was born with the full set. So why then, you ask, does the little finger on my left hand resemble something from the bins behind a butcher's shop? Isn't it a bit of a bugger, seeing as you're left-handed as well? Well, I'm certainly glad you asked the question, for it is now time to put the blame squarely on my sister, who seems to have escaped relatively lightly from these stories.
I've already broken a finger once in my life, in a bizarre misadventure involving a rubber johnny machine, but this little affair came as a callow youth in an age where my pornography collection had not even filled two cardboard boxes.

We had a dog at that time. We rescued him from the RSPCA as a six month old pup in 1977, and watched him grow from a nutty little baby into a complete and utter mentallist, stupid enough to wrestle a pitbull while drunk, given half the chance, and if he were alive today, stupid enough to assert that the Australians definitely the better team in the Rugby World Cup. Half labrador, half beagle, half mad, he made our lives hell. And we called him Snoopy. His entire raison d'etre was based on two premises. One: to rip the house to shreds; and two: to escape.

The first he managed in an efficient, workmanlike manner. Left alone in the house for any length of time he would completely destroy of any room you left him in. He had a particular liking for wallpaper, which would be ripped off the walls in great strips, and anything that came through the front door, which would come to a horrible end. He spent one particularly busy Sunday chewing through ever piece of electrical flex in the house, prompting frenzied screams of "Don't touch that switch!" whenever somebody went into a room. Bad Dog.

On one memorable occasion, he nosed his way into my sister's room. The door had a self-closer on it and the poor little mutt was trapped, so he set about tidying the place up in the only way he knew how. Bad Dog. How I laughed. The next day, he found himself in my room and chewed the model glider which I had spent the last three weeks painstakingly preparing for flight, into small chunks of balsa and tissue paper. Bad Dog. How my sister laughed.

Dad decided there would be only one way to calm him down - cut off his bollocks. The hormones rushing round his body would disappear, et voila! Good Dog! My arse. He became a mentallist eunuch dog, even more hell bent on ripping the house into little pieces to get his awful and bloody revenge on those humans who scuppered his chances of getting it on with the lovely Rigsby, bitch of this parish, at number twenty-eight. It would have been like a cocktail sausage in the Channel Tunnel anyway, judging by the stream of randy dogs beating a path to her kennel.

His greatest energies, however, were spent trying to escape from his prison. Open the front door more than a few inches, and the little bastard would be through your legs and high-tailing it up the road before you knew it. The trouble was that once he'd got free, he didn't know what to do with himself, and he'd invariably run around crapping on other people's front lawns before getting bored and sitting politely on the front door step until he was dragged inside and locked under the stairs (err.. poetic licence, we didn't really lock him under the stairs. In was the downstairs toilet).

Daily, and like the very incarnation of Steve McQueen, he'd prowl the house and garden looking for a way out. And get out he did. Often. Once he wriggled through a minute gap in the fence to join me and the school football team halfway through an important match. I had never been so embarrassed in my life, especially as he turned out to be the best player on the pitch. On another occasion, he hurled himself bodily at the front door as the milkman came (as was his habit), only to forget to stop, and find himself in a pool of shattered glass on the doorstep. Bad Dog.

His favourite exit point was the gate across the drive. Often disguising himself as a washer woman, he'd escape right under the noses of the camp guards, and on towards the Swiss border and freedom. Or he'd dig a tunnel. With a good run-up he could vault the thing quite easily, and over the years, we nailed on more and more wood until the gates were over six feet tall, and he'd still scramble over to freedom. And I'll tell you another thing about those gates, he said, getting to the point at last: they bite.

And so came The Fateful Day. A pleasant, sunny one over the village of Twyford, if I'm not mistaken, and we're going out for the day on our bikes. Bless. After breakfasting on the most delicious sausage sandwich Jill and I wheeled our bikes up the drive. She had something girlie, I had my Raleigh Olympus, last seen in these sagas knocking Balders under a bus. I opened the gates, showing correct papers to the camp commandant on the way out. Jill was a little tardy catching up with me, and Snoopy seeing his chance, made a dash for freedom.

"Shut the gate! Shut the gate!" I shouted.

Too late. Bad Dog was already out, and making a dash for it. With a despairing lunge, I caught the mad ball of fur and slobber by the collar, and saved ourselves another enraged visit from Mrs Nutter down the road with Snoop's dog egg in a Waitrose carrier bag.

About five seconds too late, Jill slammed the gate shut, with my finger stuck between gate and gatepost. It didn't so much slam as crunch.

Imagine if you will, dear reader, the scene. Idiot dog, making a dash for freedom, small boy heroically saving the day with right hand, while left hand is becoming somewhat longer and thinner than it used to be, while sister is leaning ever harder against the gate, wondering why the latch isn't quite closing. Imagine also the raging agony.

"Open the gate! Open the gate!" I shouted, rather more urgently than my plea to close it.

"But the dog'll get out! What about Mrs Nutter?"

"Oh, make an emergency call to the Blue Rinse Brigade. Fuck the fucking dog! Open the fucking gate!" And only thirteen years old, too.

She opened the gate. My finger looked like it had been squashed by an anvil in a Tom and Jerry cartoon. Snoop, by this time, was about a hundred yards down the road, laying a dog egg on Mrs Nutter's lawn.

And did I get sympathy? A trip to casualty to reset my obviously shattered finger? My big hairy arse, did I. I got a rocket. The dog escaped. He'd shat on Mrs Nutter's garden, and worst of all, I'd uttered the dreaded f-word within earshot of my parents. To my room. Forever. Bad Kid.

Several days later, with my finger still three times its normal size and various shades of yellow, black and green, looking like a bruised yam my father the doctor told me "Son, you may have broken a small bone in there."

The dog, on the other hand, got a bone, which he buried down the garden as part of an ongoing project to tunnel his way to freedom. If he wasn't already dead, I'd bury the bastard alive.

And just to keep everybody happy, fit the following in as you please: I did something a loser would do. Like cook prawns for Christmas, with a side order of definately unbecoming chutney. He's gonna cry, then I'm gonna cry, then we're all gonna cry. Happy now? Serves you right for being obtuse.

Read the original version of this story at The Scaryduck Archive

Thursday, December 04, 2003

Letters to the editor

Sir -

When is our so-called democratically elected Prime Minister going to sit up and do something about that nest of filth and perversion that is the internet?

These days, a man such as myself who has fought in seven world wars, and prides himself as being one of this nation’s “silver surfers”, cannot give his e-mail address and credit card number to an honest-to-goodness pro-countryside and pro-hunting website like farmsluts.com without being deluged with such messages as “Lolita’s drenched in HOTT cum” and “Spittro@st Teenz in seXXX orgie frenzy!!!”

In the name of Jahweh, don’t they teach English in schools these days? The grammar and punctuation in these messages is appalling, and the spelling is what I’ve come to expect from the comprehensive system these days.

If Blair is serious about educating our firm, thrusting, full-breasted youth, for a career in the all-important gentlemen’s relief industry, we should be taking a leaf out of the Kingdom of Thailand’s book, where every child can spell “Suckee fuckee mister, only five dollar, I love you long time” by the time they are twelve.

I am not mad.

Yours etc,

Lt Col Winston St John Cholmondeley-Cholmondeley Patel (Mrs)
D Wing Belmarsh Prison

On a screen near you

You know the form by now. Four Scary stories, only one will appear tomorrow:

* Top Shelf - booze woe
* Pomagne - more booze woe
* Inflatables - pneumatic woe
* Bad Dog - bad dog induced bizarre injury woe

Don't forget to include the word or phrase you'd like to appear in the winning story. Vote-o!

The Scaryduck Archive

Wednesday, December 03, 2003

Room 101

An occasional series of things that get right on my tits

No.5: Over-decorated houses at Christmas

Now, I enjoy the festering season as much as the next man, but what in the name of blummin’ hairy arses is the point of hanging thousands of lights on the outside of your house so that it looks like an accident at a nuclear power station? Fine, it’s a pursuit that brings pleasure to thousands of mentally sub-normal people, but then so does Michael Jackson.

On the third week of November, I spotted my first, a house near the station in Dorchester looking like Picadilly Circus on a bad hair day, and the spirit of idiocy has send dozens up ladders to wire themselves into the national grid. Why? Why? In the name of the Son of God’s birthday, WHY?

Bad taste, bad for the wallet and bad for the environment - the little disc under the stairs must be spinning round like the clappers, what with all those lights, and at least four televisions round the house tuned into “America’s Dumbest Criminals” on Sky One, while granny is gainfully employed shoving 50p pieces into the meter. I have enough trouble finding a spare plug for the Christmas tree without going a whole month without the stereo, how do these jokers manage it?

Very little to do with the meaning of Christmas, and more to do with the American Santa-isation of our culture, where these decorations go up at Thanksgiving and don’t come down again until Easter.

Bah. Humbug. And I don’t care. Where’s my bloody present?

Lyle hates them too.

The Scaryduck Archive

Tuesday, December 02, 2003

Hold the front page!

I'm now into my second week as a genuine bona-fide journalist, and today I attend the first of many courses with such names as "Copy Writing", "Libel and Copyright" and "Creating Headlines and Intros". Today's session is called "So, you want to be a blood-sucking parasite?" There's no denying it - I'm IN!!!

Hot dang, I love my job.


I’m in danger of developing a Manic-style obsession with this, but with the sparks flying off my tinfoil helmet, I’m certain that Shrub’s Thanksgiving dinner in Baghdad didn’t actually take place. Meticulously planned that it was, five will give you ten that the President didn’t set foot in Iraq. For the paranoid fantasists amongst us there’s a fair to middling chance that he didn’t even leave continental USA.

After years as an X-Files fanatic, I’m convinced that UFOs don’t exist, the truth isn’t out there, and the whole shebang can be easily explained by the twin human capacities of evil and stupidity. But hey, there’s nothing like a good conspiracy theory, even if it involves forgetting everything you've been taught in your journo training.

“What about all those troops and journalists, then?” you ask.

Troops - under orders on pain of losing their pension, freedom and benefits to keep their mouths shut.

Journalists - herded onto Airforce One which conveniently had its windows blacked out “for safety reasons”. For all the passengers knew, they could have been flown round and round the Isle of Wight until they were sick, before putting in at Area 52, Area 51’s more secretive brother. Or they put in at Kuwait, or Bahrain, or somewhere equally hot, desertified and safe.

The other alternative is that Dubya really did visit the troops at Baghdad Airport. A cynical photo-opportunity of a visit, but fair play to the man. Bastard.

Curiouser and curiouser.

Next week: How Princess Di was killed off as a sacrifice to the Lizard Queen Mother by the Cigarette Smoking Man.

Abnormal programming will return tomorrow. I'll get over this. Honest.

The Scaryduck Archive

Monday, December 01, 2003


The Colonel
Your stars for the coming month featuring guest astrologer Mystic Lt Col Winston St John Cholmondeley-Cholmondeley Patel (Mrs), official soothsayer to the 3rd Queen's Foot and Mouth "during that nasty business in Malaya". So he tells us.

DECEMBER - I don’t believe in this guff as a rule, but I owe the editor chappie a favour after that unfortunate business with the rubber tubing. So, break out the dice, the tarot cards and the crystal ball, and let’s see what Madame Fate has in store for us, what?

Aries: The mists are clearing. I knew I shouldn’t have had that seventeenth brandy last night. Isee a family gathering. I see a tree. Gifts. A large meal. I see you starving and derelict under a railway arch. Life’s a sod, what?
Lucky rugby player: Sir Jonny Wilkinson

Taurus: Taurus! I remember when I was in Spain, training as a matador with Pinky Newman. He turned to me, just seconds after being fatlaly gored by that fearful old bull El Grande Bastardo and said to me, “Winston old chap, sod this for a laugh.” Anyway I mentioned this little episode at the Harpo Club to his brother Doris just the other day, and.... continued on page 94....
Lucky bum cleft: Kylie

Gemini: Gemini? They’re twins aren’t they? I remember two fantastic twins, Lucy and Elizabeth Hilbert-Smythe. A rum pair they were, always up for japes, and fine horsewomen to boot. Had them both at the Hunter’s Ball just before that Suez business. Got six months for that I remember, and both have walked with a limp since. Lovely girls, lovely.
Lucky cock: Bantam

Cancer: December! The month of gifts! And you can thank a loved one for that special gift you’ll receive this year. Ebola. Again.
Lucky Transylvanian: Michael Howard

Leo: Lions! I remember when I was stationed in Kenya, keeping our Commonwealth bretheren in line. Came face to face with the biggest lion you ever saw. Gave the brute both barrels before I realised it was the local chieftan in his tribal head-dress. What ho, the ensuing battle nearly lost us the entire Horn. In my day we would have tied them across the mouths of cannons, and that taught them to mess with the Empire. Look out for escaped lions, what?
Lucky London Borough: Kensington and Chelsea

Virgo: What’s a virgin, eh? I’ve never met one. Apart from my lovely wife Algernon, pure as the driven snow, and as far as I know she still is. And from what I can see in the stars, you can experience a similar situation this month, and for the rest of your life. Tough luck, old bean.
Lucky dead author: Roald Dahl

Libra: Now old chap, I dealt out the tarot cards, and unlucky for you, your card is “Death”. Now, according to the bumph, the Death card need not necessarily mean you dying and all that unpleasantness. But let’s face it, you’re doomed, eh?
Lucky dead author’s relative who I’d like to see deshabille: Sophie Dahl

Scorpio: The ancient Chinese craft of I Ching sees a conviction for looking up womens’ skirts on the escalator at your local shopping centre. The words “Big Dave’s Bitch” will play a part in your near future, whatever that means. Still, Happy Christmas, eh what?
Lucky Beatle with a monoped wife: Paul

Sagittarius: Christmas! The time of goodwill to all men! However, I can’t get images of Sagittarians getting buggered to death by Russian sailors out of my head. Nothing to do with horoscopes, I’m just remembering the last moments of my old housemaster Binky Freeman. Smashing chap, split arse to tit.
Lucky bastard who got free rugby tickets: Prince Harry

Capricorn: Heads or tails? Heads says Happy Christmas and a Properous New year to all Capricorns. Tails gives you never-ending torture at the talons of intestine-eating creatures from the depths of the Barents Sea. Ah. Tails it is. Tough luck old bean.
Lucky religion: Jehovah’s Witnesses

Aquarius: The water bearer eh? That reminds be of the time in the Raj when I couldn’t pass water for three months. Blown up like a great balloon I was, what? The regimental Medical Officer, Shaky Patterson managed to stay off the old gut-rot long enough to insert an old wire coathanger up my old man and get a nest of scorpions out. And the relevance for your coming month? Don’t ask, chum.
Lucky soap transsexual: Hayley Cropper

Pisces: During my all-too-brief spell as governor of a small island in the Caribbean, Squiffy Henderson and I found it interesting to witness our Commonwealth bretheren’s idea of local justice, involving the insertion of the island’s daily fish catch where the tropical sun doesn’t shine. Believe me, and you’ll find out soon enough, it doesn’t hurt as much as you think. After the fifth or sixth time, it is, in fact rather enjoyable.
Lucky lubricant: Utterly Butterly

If it’s your birthday: Born on this day in history - Sir Isaac Newton (1642), Anwar Sadat (1918), Humprey Bogart (1899), Jesus of Nazareth, Son of God (0)

The Scaryduck Archive

Saturday, November 29, 2003


Someone do me a slight favour here. Could someone take the left half of the wave piccie above (it comes in two parts, you can’t get the wood y’know) and photoshop in a rubber duckie riding the surf? I lack the hummus to do it myself and would be eternally grateful towards the person who comes to my rescue, though not to the extent of parting with money.

That is all.

Edit: That's enough ducks, thanks.

The Scaryduck Archive

Friday, November 28, 2003


God, I hated fishing. To it’s credit, I gave it a go, but just couldn’t see the benefit of sitting by a stinking river for hours on end where - suddenley - nothing happened. I could enjoythe privacy of my own bedroom, thank you very much, and at least derive some sort of pleasure from the experience.

While my brother and Matty next door still wasted their time down the gravel pits and the mill pond, I had bigger fish to fry. And I still had my groundbait catapult. It was ace. Solid metal handle, top quailty rubber and a lovely big pouch, just right for launching a handful of bait into the middle of the stream. But bollocks to that. It also took a nice, big stone, and when I could, Nige’s lead shot from his fishing box. Launched at a distant target, it was lethal.

I took my find to non-fishing Cookie’s house. He was impressed, and within minutes, we had returned from the local fishing shop with a matching pair. There would be hell.

Now, Cookie was my best friend. He was kind, compassionate, always listened to your problems. A true mate. He ran a local animal charity from his bedroom. But woe betide any of God’s fluffy creatures that dared venture into his back garden.

Any number of homemade traps and snares were primed at any one time, carefully crafted in his toolshed with top quality materials, and placed with due care by spirit level and theodolite in the garden for maximum bloodletting. Many is the afternoon I’d go round his place for egg and chips to find some poor mouse or bird bludgeoned to death by some contraption fashioned out of elastic bands, piano wire, a few bent branches and a cricket bat with a breeze block nailed to it.

A lovely, expensive catapult was a new weapon for his armoury. Armed with stones, lead shot and a bag of nails, we went up Bluebell Woods to practice.

Within hours, the air was rent with pinging metal and rocks, and a target nailed to a tree was peppered with ammo. We found that a pouch of several stones was inaccurate, but would spatter nicely like a shotgun. However, a medium-sized stone could hit the target with great accuracy from a good thirty or forty yards. We proved this with a line of bottles we found in a bush, soon to be reduced to a pile of shattered No Deposit, No Return glass.

Over the next days of that fine summer, we honed our skills, until one day, Cookie the animal lover decided it was high time some of the local vermin should become closely acquainted with the art of the catapult. Vermin being any bird or animal that crossed the borders into his garden.

Birds proved to be a problem. We soon found that firing a single stone, straight up into the air, didn’t have the accuracy we would have hoped for. Besides, those darned pigeons seemed to see them coming and dodge out of the way, dropping a curly one on our heads by way of revenge. After fifteen minutes of frustration, and not one twitching corpse littering the garden, it was decided to switch to buckshot.

Handfuls of stones were loaded into our respective weapons, and as the first bird flew over, we let fly.

Missed. Bollocks. Try again.

We reloaded, just as a huge v-shaped formation of geese came over from the gravel pits on their way to the Thames, a few miles away. We couldn’t believe our luck. Goose for dinner - there was a happy, smiling, benevolent God out there who would reward our endeavours. Was there, my arse.

We took aim. We let off simultaneous volleys at the geese. We watched our stones arc into the air, miss the birds by several hundred feet and fall to Earth. To Earth in the farmer’s land behind Cookie’s garden. Farmer’s land which consisted of row after row of tomato-filled greenhouses.

“Jesus Tap-Dancing Christ!”

There was a cacophony of breaking glass which seemed to go on forever. It seemed that the entire nursery was falling apart, pane by sickening pane.

It was all too much. We legged it.

Cookie’s mum and dad were both respected members of the community who did their bit for church and charitable causes. Innocents from a dying, more innocent age, he was still coming to terms with the fact that AA Men didn’t salute you any more, while she didn’t understand frottage, thinking all the world’s problems could be solved with a slap-up tea. As such, we were basically dead meat, with the evidence red hot in our sweaty palms, and it was only a matter of time before we would be fingered.

There was only one thing to do. Destroy!

The bands were cut into tiny pieces of rubber and shoved down the toilet. For six agonising flushes, bits of rubber sat there, mocking us as we waiting for the tank to fill, and for an irate, shotgun wielding farmer to kick the door down and fill us with lead. Then there were the metal handles. To the garage, where we beat them with hammers, crushed them in a vice and smashed them into little pieces. And then we threw them into a bucket of battery acid, just to be on the safe side.


It was the local police constable, not a stranger to my not-so-good self, investigating alleged criminal damage to some local greenhouses, and would we know anything about it?

“Not us”, officer, we lied, “we’re too busy doing homework.”

“So you know nothing of two youths messing about with catapults then?”

I may as well have that Jack in the Box hat on with a sign saying “It was me! Run me downtown and bugger me senseless in the cells!” If you’re going to lie, make them whoppers.

“Pffffffff.... us? We can’t stand fishing, that’s cruelty to animals that is. Would you like to contribute to our wildlife charity?”

He went away, not entirely convinced, but just to be on the safe side, we went over to the farm a couple of weeks later and offered to help him out, “for nothing, like, mister, it’s a school project on ...err.. market gardening” as guilt got the better of us.

“Thanks, lads”, said Mr Johnson, “You’re a credit to the village. Not like those little bastards who smashed my greenhouses. If I get them, I’ll skin the little shits alive and feed them to the pigs. No-one will ever find their bodies.”

I haven’t seen Cookie for a few years, come to think of it.

The Scaryduck Archive

Thursday, November 27, 2003

Changing Rooms

Don't mind me, just farting about with the template. I'll change it back to the old one tomorrow if you all hate it.

Prepare to be judged

Judge Dredd
Greetings citizens. The closing date for the Guardian British Blog Awards has now passed, and the judging has begun.

Judge Scary will be passing amongst you with a critical eye and a copy of the Oxford Dictionary. Stand up straight! You - yes YOU - no slouching!

Don’t drop litter, refrain from chewing gum and remember to say grace before meals. By stomm, there’s still plenty of room in the Iso Cubes.

You don’t think I’m taking this seriously, do you?


A Happy Thanksgiving to our American readers. Time to post this photo, then. This means the Festering Season will soon be upon us. Don’t laugh. DO NOT LAUGH. It’s not funny. Mostly.

And a belated Eid Mubarak to any readers who have been observing Ramadan.

Forthcoming Attractions

It's that time of the week again. Time to vote for the Scary story that will appear here tomorrow. Choose between

* Greenhouses - accidental vandalism woe
* Top Shelf - not what you think, starring our very own Balders
* Pomagne - drunken schoolkid woe
* Inflatables - not entirely what you think either, not much woe

I will, additionally, be including any word or phrase you may nominate. Vote-o!


A big thanks to those very nice people at Blogger for updating me to banner free. w00t!

The Scaryduck Archive

Wednesday, November 26, 2003

Scaryduck’s ‘Did You Know...?’ No. 332

In order to improve the dental health of the nation, the British government is to add flouride to all beers, wines and spirits served in British pubs from July 1st 2005. Children will not be forgotten in this ground-breaking piece of legislation - all alcopops and three litre bottles of extra strong cider sold in supermarkets and off-licences will come with added fluoride too, along with a cheery message reminding the kiddies to brush their teeth before bedtime.


Never one to laugh at the misfortunes of others, it is upsetting, nay distressing to read that Leeds United Football Club may be forced into administration with debts totalling eighty-one million pounds. Now, if only they’d watched daytime television instead of going round starting fights outside bars and getting mixed up with the wrong crowd, and they might have seen those heart-rending adverts featuring Carol Vorderman urging you to sell your mortal soul for a bank loan. According to the lovely and not-in-it-for-the-money-at-all Carol, for just one gentle repayment, they can consolidate their debts and regain the lifestyle to which they’ve become accustomed, with perhaps a little left over for that new car or a holiday.

Not only that, every applicant gets a handy digital alarm clock and an attractive pen set, which will go straight into the squad for the fixture against Charlton Athletic this weekend.

The Scaryduck Archive

Tuesday, November 25, 2003

The Dog Lady

This is Ollbeek's winning entry in the Make Mrs Duck Laugh competition. His website can be found at http://revolicktion.blogspot.com Enjoy. I did.

The age of fifteen was a very important one for me. I was nearly allowed to buy cigarettes without breaking the law, I had my first ‘proper’ girlfriend and I moved house for the first time in my life. Being fifteen, I didn’t know much about the house moving lark, but luckily my mum was in control of that so I only had minimal stress from the whole operation.

We moved into a quaint end terrace in a (semi) desirable area of my home town, Whitefield. With my two brothers having recently left home to go to university, I had first choice in bedrooms, and being a fifteen year old rebellious type I chose to set up shop in the cellar. Although it had no windows it was extremely comfortable and was big enough for a double bed. Bear in mind I had my first ‘proper’ girlfriend at this stage and so had high hopes for this bed.

After the excitement of the move I was straight to sleep on my first night. It was absolutely pitch black in that cellar, an unforseen bonus of having no windows, and I slept like… well, like a knackered fifteen year old in a pitch black room on a questionably comfortable, but very large, bed.

I wasn’t sure if I was having a nightmare or what, but suddenly I was wide awake. I couldn’t tell what time of day or night it was but, as I was convinced the end of the world was nigh, it didn’t really matter. Coming from somewhere was a noise that could only be described as a jackal being raped by the Hound of the Baskervilles whilst running repeatedly up and down a flight of stairs. I fell up my concrete staircase and burst through my door to be greeted by my mum’s horrified face. Horrified as I’m not a pretty sight first thing in the morning but also because she was hearing the same thing I was.

After much deliberation and investigation all became clear. Our new neighbour, Lynda, was something of a dog lover, and worked shifts in a nursing home. This explained why we were only allowed to view the house at certain times before buying and possibly why the devious gits that lived there before us had wanted out. Lynda had eleven dogs at this stage. All were mongrels and all did stink. However, having just moved there we couldn’t do much about it so we lived with it.

For two years we lived with it and by now I was seventeen. In those two years certain things came to light concerning Lynda and, it has to be said, just how mad she was. Every morning breakfast would be cooked for the dogs (or her ‘children’ as she referred to them). Eggs and bacon usually, slopped onto the kitchen floor. Whilst working her shifts at the nursing home, Lynda would lock up her dogs for twelve hours in her two up two down terrace. As dogs do they would relieve themselves when and where they felt like it. Lynda would then return home and go ballistic shouting things such as, ‘What have you done you filthy bastards?’ Well, they’d done what dogs do. Lynda’s dogs had also been given disturbingly human names, such as Barney, Philip, Lewis etc. Perhaps the most disturbing fact of all was that none of the bitches in her pack had been spade. So by now she had twenty of these inbred hell hounds running amuck in her stinking hovel of a home. Oh yes, the smell. I haven’t mentioned the smell have I? The thin walls that allowed us to glean all this information also let us know what Lynda’s house must smell like. Less than pleasant as I am sure you can imagine.

Despite the dogs, things were looking up. My mum was going on holiday for two weeks and leaving me to house sit. Imagine my joy, seventeen and a pad of my own for a fortnight. My best mate, James, decided this was too good an opportunity to miss and promptly moved in. We didn’t have parties every night and the music wasn’t on that loud all the time. So I don’t know what it was but Lynda seemed to have taken a certain dislike to us, often beating the walls and shouting nonsense through them, such as, ‘I’ll tell your mother you’re smoking those drugs of ecstasy!’

James and I decided we’d had enough of her and her dogs. So we took action, as any self respecting, mischievous seventeen year olds would. The first stop was the butchers and the second the chemist. Lynda was on day shifts, which was fortunate, and so when she was gone for the day, my friend and I posted five premium scotch beef steaks, laced with laxatives, through her door. Twenty dogs, all with the screaming ad dabs, locked up for twelve hours; imagine the mess.

That night we knew it had had the desired effect. She went mental; absolutely, undeniably crazy. ‘WHAT HAVE YOU DONE? YOU FUCKING BASTARDS! AAAAARGH!’ At which point she broke down. I must say I felt a pang of guilt for a second but then she pulled herself together and seemed to be preparing to clean the place. Only Lynda’s idea of cleaning was as twisted as her idea of ‘children’. From what we could hear it sounded like she was filling a bath. But then the sound of sluicing water told us she had filled a tin bath and just chucked it on the floor. What a way to clean your house.

Despite our previous and momentary guilt, James and I felt our mission had been accomplished. Surely now she would get rid of at least some of the inbred mutts. But one must never assume and we were not dealing with a rational being here. The dogs stayed, and after our little prank, the stench increased exponentially.

When my mum returned from holiday she too must have felt it was time to do something. The environmental health were called in. After a preliminary investigation they decided Lynda’s house was a) the worst case they’d had in a private residence and b) rotting from the inside out. They proposed to gut it and give it a full new interior. Lynda, mentally challenged as she is, had failed to buy any house insurance. As a result, hard earned tax payers’ cash was used in the form of a council grant to give her a brand spanking new house, including double glazing!?. In a few years she’ll probably get another free refurb as she now has twenty five dogs. I realise it’s not the dogs’ fault but still, I can’t help thinking that perhaps my mate and I should have used poison instead of poo powder.

Woo! Yay! Houpla! and indeed Panowie!

Inter 1-5 Arsenal - Mua ha ha haaaaaaaaaargh!

The Scaryduck Archive

Monday, November 24, 2003


I never wanted to work in this place. I want to be a lumberjack, swinging from tree to tree, wearing womens’ clothing and hanging round in bars.

As of today I am Chief Sub Editor S. Duck, and for the first time in fourteen years I am no longer required to work night shifts. This is A Good Thing. Yet I still scan the job pages for vacancies in the field of transvestite tree surgery. You never know.

Edit: The buggers in my new office all listen to Saga FM, the digital radio station for those awaiting the Grim Reaper. My ears! My ears!

Can I have my old job back?

Mad Norwegian

Apropos of Saturday's gloating egg-chasing related post, I've managed to dig up the original "Can you hear me?" audio clip (Real Audio required), delivered by a now sadly deceased Norwgian TV commentator on his nation's defeat of England in a World Cup football qualifier. Genius.

The Scaryduck Archive

Saturday, November 22, 2003


Rolf Harris! Crocodile Dundee! Ned Kelly! Clive James - can you hear me? Men at Work! Sir Les Patterson! Can you hear me in your campaigning? Dame Edna Everidge! Your boys took one HELL of a beating!

Letters to the Editor

Sir –

It has come to my attention that the entire plotline for J.K. Rowling’s latest over-priced pot-boiler “Harry Potter and the Banshee’s Floater” is nothing but a cheap rehash of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s classic detective yarn “Sherlock Holmes and the Mystery of the Corn-Laden Turd”.

When will the powers-that-be do something about this trendy left-wing Bolshevik menace and burn Rowling at the stake like the wart-riddled witch that she is?

Children these days should be forced, at gun-point if necessary, to read good, wholesome literature such as “Mein Kampf”, the lingerie pages of the Kay’s catalogue and the collected works of that fine upstanding young author “Lord” Jeffrey Archer.

I am not mad.

Yours etc,

Lt Col Winston St John Cholmondeley-Cholmondeley Patel (Mrs)

The Scaryduck Archive

Friday, November 21, 2003


In your youth, did you ever try to pass yourself off as an adult? Unless you were one of those kids with stubble and/or breasts at the age of nine, you didn’t tend to get away with it, do you? Take my good self by way of example. I was never the biggest of kids, and I could rarely pass myself off as my own age, let alone a tax-paying, voting adult. At the age of twenty-five I was still having to produce my driving licence to get served in pubs, and even then it was to the most dubious of landlords. Whatever made me think, at the age of fifteen, I could ever get away with it? Short answer: stupidity.

So there were were, at Air Cadets camp at RAF Waddington in Lincolnshire. All Vulcan bombers and Wimmin’s Peace Camps (who were roundly abused, but little did I realise that within ten years, I’d be on the same marches as them), but most of all we were away from our parents and under the care of a bunch of uniformed idiots who thought that by shouting at us in very loud voices they had us under control. We spent days marching up and down drill squares, shooting things on the ranges, puking in the swimming pool, visiting other air stations and generally annoying the RAF staff, who referred to us as Space Cadets. Waste-of-Space Cadets.

The problem was that I was small for my age. Gary, Shed and Stu could, in fading light, pass themselves off as eighteen, but you’d need to be Blind Pew’s blinder and deafer brother to believe that I was of age. Then there was Roger Ramjet. Same age as the rest of us, but in a twelve year old’s body, with an eight year old’s brain.

So, what in the name of God possessed us to try to get served in the pub nearest the main gates of the RAF station? We were literally chased back to our barrack by a bunch of squaddies after Roger asked for, and I kid you not, “A cup of beer, please Mister.”

It was also no-go in the station’s Other Ranks bar, after all, everybody and their dog knew we were Spacers, and a trip out to the local off licence was thwarted by a sign of the door reading “Thames Valley Air Cadets: Don’t even think about it”, signed personally by Wing Commander Matthews. The grown-ups had all the bases covered at this particular base. Or so they thought.

On the last day of camp, as was the tradition, we were to be let loose in the nearest town to the station. In the case of RAF Waddington, this was the City of Lincoln, a historic city with a magnificent cathedral dominating the scenery for miles around. One of the camp spunkers, leafing through the pages of a certain magazine in the barrackroom, noted that Lincoln was also home to a Private Sex Shop. We would, it was decided there and then, troop down there and top up on our jazz supplies. So we did, en masse, forty of us. We were met with one word: “Out”. I never even got in through the door.

Obviously, the big mob of kids was rather too prominent for the citizens of Lincoln. There was only one thing for it - split and try out luck in smaller numbers. A few tried pubs, but they all seemed to contain our leaders on the lookout for cadets to put on a charge, and they caught plenty, particularly the ones still wearing their uniforms. One bright spark thought they could get pissed on the Communion wine at the cathedral. Total alcohol content, despite protestations that “I only got a bloody sip”: 0.0000001%

Desperate to get into somewhere underage, we all headed for the cinema, which, as luck would have it, was showing Porky’s, a movie about a bunch of kids trying to get into a bar underage. Standing on tiptoe and affecting our deepest voices “One Please”, we all got in. All except Roger Ramjet, who asked for a kids’ ticket and was shown the door before he could even get his money out of his pocket, his protests that “I’m eighteen, Mister, honest” being met with snorts of laughter from the fat, sweaty doorman. He sat outside for two hours waiting for us.

We got to see Porky’s: The Puritan’s Cut. He was the lucky one.

The Scaryduck Archive

Wednesday, November 19, 2003

Mrs Duck – The Final Reckoning

…Et Norvege… nul points. And that concludes the voting from the Luxembourg jury.

We humbly invited you, dear reader, with promises of grand prizes and free shit, to make the lovely Mrs Duck laugh. And so she did. From a decent sheath (Huh huh Beavis, he said ‘sheath’ Huh huh huhuh huh…) of entries, we selected two which were deemed smirkworthy enough to pick up the prizes.

First: Oliver Burdekin’s story “The Dog Lady”, a true tale of mirth, woe and poop in the finest tradition. Well done that man.

Second: Jemma Jacob’s tale of teen drunkenness, which admittedly higher on woe than mirth, still caused sniggering above and beyond the call of duty.

With the permission of the authors, I’d like to reproduce these stories here next week.

Highly Recommended: Both Lori Smith (a dramatically posed photo cartoon) and Denis Bostock both spent ages on their entries, but sorry chaps, there can be only one winner. Denis’s story of an Animal Farm style bovine rebellion cannot be passed over without quoting this fine, fine gag:

”Right young man,” said the farmer in his gruff pipe-smoer’s voice, “I’m getting too old to do all the work round here, so I need someone to help me with the slaughtering work. Stunning cows.”
“Yes, they are quite attractive.”

The entry that tickled us the most, however, came from Gowon Sanusi of Lagos, Nigeria, for his stunning interpetation of the work “I AM WRITING IN RESPECT OF GENE BILLINGS, A CUSTOMER OF MY BANK, WHO PERISHED IN A PLANE CRASH ALONG WITH HIS BARREN WIFE…THIRTY MILLION UNITED STATES DOLLARS.” A true work of genius that had us in tears the whole night.

Thank you for your efforts, there’ll be another big-prize competition soon.

The Scaryduck Archive

Tuesday, November 18, 2003

Letters to the Editor

Sir –

What a load of rubbish these so-called Old Wives’ Tales are. My fellow Rotarians and I appeal to the Home Secretary to do something suitably draconian to wipe out this greatest menace to society since they legalised Larry Grayson without delay. Only recently, an old wife (not mine, I hasten to add) told me, whilst observing a glorious sunset, “Red sky at night, shepherd’s delight.”

Imagine my dismay, on picking up my copy of The Times the next day to read that Arnold Widdershins, a popular sheep-herder and licensed goat-worrier of this parish had been tragically killed in a bizarre spacehopper accident. Hardly cause to be delighted – especially as it pissed with rain for the whole day!

I am not mad.

Yours etc

Lt Col Winston St. John Cholmondeley-Cholmondeley Patel (Mrs)

The Scaryduck Archive

Monday, November 17, 2003

Room 101

An occasional series on things that get right up my arse.

No.4: Other People’s Crap

Beer cans, endless cigarette butts, a Mars a day, “Have a Nice Day” pizza boxes, the face of Colonel Sanders smiling up from the gutter, caring little for the damage that he and his friend the red-haired clown have done. Wherever you go, someone else has been there before you, and has left something poisonous, non-biodegradable or plain old ugly behind them. Is this the world we want to live in?

You drive at night, from the car in front an explosion of sparks sends you into buttock-clenching fright as a cigarette butt flies from the window and hits the road in a cascade of fire. You want to pull them over, you want to throw it back at them with an “Excuse me, I believe you’ve dropped something”, but they’re also built like a brick shithouse, and you’re far, far too English for that kind of thing.

After spending an entire weekend with myneighbours clearing litter and dog shit off the Rodwell Trail (a picturesque former railway line that runs round the edge of Portland Harbour), I was dismayed to see some teenage oaf throwing his chip wraper into the bushes while walking the dog. Despite the fact he looked like he’d just got out of one of Portland’s three prisons, I finally cracked and let the bastard have it with a mouthful of abuse until he was embarrassed enough to bin his rubbish and flee from the mad fat bloke with the comedy dog.

I’ll probably end up stabbed in a gutter somewhere at this rate.

Last week, somebody dumped a sofa on the trail. A sofa! Don’t people set fire to things any more? I did, however, earn myself three pounds fifty by turning it upside-down and getting the loose change out of the bottom. Council? Moi?

Fast food, slow brains, too lazy to care, too selfish to consider it anything but somebody else’s problem. Society is doomed.

Hang on while I finish off these Hula-Hoops. Shite. No bin.

The Scaryduck Archive

Sunday, November 16, 2003


My kids had seventies rock’n’roll icon Alvin Stardust visit their school this week, lecturing on the influence of "Doo-Wop" music during the Malayan Emergency*. I thought he was dead, but how wrong I was! It appears that following an unfortunate spacehopper accident in 1985, he was revived by the Juju Man of Stockwell in an arcane ceremony involving a short stick, June Whitfield's lingerie drawer and three drops of Ronald McDonald's blood**. Fact fans will be amazed to learn that Alvin Stardust isn’t his real name. He changed it just before he became famous and had his digeridoo turned inside out. Born Ethel Stardust in a convent in what is now Harare, Zimbabwe***. FACT.

Readers will be delighted to know that despite his hideous and terrifying premature burial ordeal, Mr Stardust is now perfectly healthy.

* One of these facts may not, in fact, be true.
** This one probably isn’t either.
*** Err...

The Scaryduck Archive