Wednesday, June 30, 2004

Chuffed, and a confession


A Daily Mail editorial entitled "Better Trains" talks of the man in charge of the railways pledging a massive 405 million pounds on the network in order to bring it up to the standards of those on the continent. "We've had the best network in the world, and we'll have it again," said a man obviously toadying his way to the top. "Our trains must be faster and cleaner; our stations brighter and the service better. The public should expect results from such a lump of money."

All well and good, except the man in question is Sir Brian Robertson, president of the national transportation commission, speaking in November 1954; reproduced in a newspaper found under the lino in my bathroom.

In other news, four Palestinians killed in clashes in Jerusalem.

Plus ca change....

You heard the man

"Hyperlinking to this site is not permitted without the express prior permission of Sellotape." Oops.


My recent piece on *cough* a friend's *cough* admiration of Velma from Scooby Doo leads me to ask the question: Which TV characters or presenters did you fancy as a kid? Has the experience left you scarred even today?

I will confess to three, all with devastating consequences for my sanity.

1. Janet Ellis - It was those jumpsuits and leotards on Grange Hill that set those teenage hormones racing. Blue Peter was just the Brucey Bonus. It's rather disturbing that she's still presenting today, having not aged a bit, with a daughter who has a head that looks like a cardboard box. I also know for a fact that there are people even more obsessed with her now than I ever was.

2. Paula Ann Bland - Played Claire in Grange Hill. She looked exactly like M****** P****** in my English class, the object of several years of unrequited teenage lust. Appeared topless in the News of the Screws as soon as the work dried up, which rather spoiled things for the purist. Now working in a shoe shop.

3. Sue Nicholls - or rather, Nadia Popov from Rentaghost. I watched each week in rapt delight, just to see the Soviet sneezing spook, with parts twitching which I hardly knew existed. She's now Audrey Roberts in Coronation Street, which I daren't watch in case I embarrass myself.

Your turn - speak your filthy brains.

The Scaryduck Archive

Tuesday, June 29, 2004

Things I have seen today

Things I have seen today

1. The nutter on the train. Which came as a bit of a surprise - I thought I was the nutter on the train. A genuinely mad "Anyone seen my camel?" type as well. And as a true nutter-magnet, he sat next to me and mumbled all the way to Poole.

2. A genuine, proper naked lady, standing in her bedroom window as the train rolled up to a red light just outside Wool. I waved. She waved back, realised her predicament, and fled in panic. You could see her flange an' everything.

Best trip to work. Ever.


Ear chewed off by Scaryduck Jr's teacher the other morning, the wrinkled old harpie.

Mrs Banshee: "He's been calling another boy 'gay'. Please could you take it upon yourself to enlighten him on the definition of the word 'gay'."

Me: "Right you are, you haggard old trout. Especially as you'll find that the correct term is 'bumsexualist'."

I fled.

This is self-same guardian of my child's education who marked him down as 'special needs'. So we took him down to see a specialist where his IQ was measured at 169.

Junior and I had words that evening, where it turned out he was the victim of schoolboy tale-telling without a shred of evidence. No change there, then. He now knows the words "bumsexualist", "turdburglar", "uphill gardener" and "eater of fancy cakes", which he may never have learned were it not for the intervention of his clearly mental teacher.

Isn't education grand?

The Scaryduck Archive

Monday, June 28, 2004

The Buggering of Football

The Buggering of Football

When I was a kid and Wayne Rooney was just an itch his his old man's scrotum, there were four divisions in the football league: Divisions one, two, three and four. Then the Premier league came along and spoiled this rather simple arrangement, leaving us with the crappily-named Premiership and division one, two and three.

Now, what the blinking fuck's going on? The league formerly known as division one has now been renamed by some bunch of marketing tossers as the "Coca Cola Championship", with division two becoming "League One" and division three renamed "League Two", making Doncaster Rovers a division one side. Somehow.

At this rate of renaming things for corporate wankery, the Reading Sunday League Division Six East (a competition which, until recent years, saw your humble author wheezing up and down the wing) will be "Division One" by the year 2020, and it's making my brain hurt.

All we need now are teams to relocate at a whim and change their names, Rugby League style, to something pointless. Milton Keynes Dons. Ah.

The Scaryduck Archive

Friday, June 25, 2004

Barmy ‘Army

Barmy ‘Army

Mr Harman was the best teacher in the world, ever. He didn't so much teach, more pass on a life's worth of experience from one generation to the next. He taught woodwork, metalwork and technical drawing, but his forte was The School of Life. He was at his best away from the formal atmosphere of the classroom, mixing it with the lads, almost as an equal.

For example, taking half a dozen of us up to the church to set up the lights for the Christmas Carol concert, we broke for lunch at twelve o'clock, feet up on the altar, munching sandwiches and passing round the Rothmans. What a fella, and infinately better than his metalwork colleague Mr Colbourne, who was rumoured to only have one foot and was called "The Penguin". Harman, naturally, was christened "Barmy 'Army".

He wasn't barmy, per se, but he had a habit of deliberately buggering up his demonstration piece in metalwork to show you what would happen if you did it wrong.

"This," he would say, pointing to a mess of molten aluminium bubbling away in the forge, "is what happens if you have the blow torch too hot."

"Don't hit the wood too hard," he warned, knocking the head off a sculpture he'd been working on for weeks, "or this will happen. And you wouldn't want that, would you?"

"Don't draw a big cock on your work, you'll lose marks in the exam."

A genius.

It was the times when you got a story out of him that were the best as he'd forget the lesson and give us all a salutary tale in the dangers of adulthood.

Before going into teaching, he worked in a factory, all lathes, drills and hairy-arsed engineers. It appeared that absolutely no work got done there, ever - they were either working up a huge skive, or clearing up pieces of co-workers who'd left the safety cover off a large, rotating piece of machinery. We didn't need icky safety videos, we just needed Barmy's tales of workplace woe.

"You weren't even safe in the bogs," he said.

Apparantly, and it still happens today, I am horrified to learn, people take a newspaper and a cigarette into the bogs, and spend thirty minutes or so having a good read and a smoke. That's tantamount to thieving from your employers, that is!

Barmy was getting particularly pissed off with his workmate Mickey, who spent hours at a time away from his machine, feeding his nicotine habit on the toilets. So he hatched a plan.

The factory was not what you'd call the most modern of places. The toilets, for example, were just a row of seats that dropped directly into the sewage pipe below. If you were downstream, you could see everybody else's output flowing past if you looked down. Barmy knew this. Water finds its own level - it's all about gravity.

So, when Mickey went for his fourth fag break of the morning, the rest of the shop floor waited a few minutes then sneaked in behind him. Barmy went into the cubicle that was furthest upstream and emptied a gallon of fuel oil down the bog. As you do.

It was only a matter of time. He'd have to drop his cigarette butt down the pan sooner or later.


Six foot flames roared out of every single toilet pan and scorched the paint off the ceiling. There was a cry of "YEOWWWWWWWWFUCKINHELL!" Mickey burst out of the cublicle, trousers round his ankles, shirt tail well alight, beating out his scorched bum-hairs with his rolled up newspaper to the cheers and applause of his workmates.

"And that," said Barmy, "Is why you shouldn't smoke."

Lesson well and truly learned, thanks.

The Scaryduck Archive

Thursday, June 24, 2004

On Choice

On Choice

The other week I wrote, and then deleted, a rather eloquant rant about the concept of "choice" in the public services, thinking that no bugger would be interested. Just my luck then, that all of this country's party leaders have been going through my bins as the issue emerged as the headline of the day yesterday. Bastards.

"Choice!" they cry. "Choice! When you need an operation, you can choose which hospital you go to. Good God, it's a free market, dog-eat-dog world now, and you, as the customer get to choose which flesh eating virus you pick up from which Health Service trust."

What, I must say, a complete load of bollocks. If Thatcher wasn't completely do-lally and calling everybody "Dennis", she'd be bouncing off the walls at the crap Blair's coming out with. And Howard's no better, trying to out-choice the opposition with a vision of tills ringing up and down the country, health service managers and private hospitals swimming in great pools of cash.

It's a phony argument, as Charles Kennedy said in a rare moment of sobriety. When I go to have my bionic legs grafted on, I'd like it to be done at the Royal Dorset Hospital, which just happens to be the nearest one to me. And I'm sure that anybody else with half a brain would want the same, unless they're having pointy bits stuck into the other half. Bollocks to choice - and the same goes for schools, transport and Lord knows what else - we just want local services that work.

Not too much to ask? Alas, it appears it is.

Childhood Heroes

No.2: Velma Dinkley

Sweet, short-sighted Velma, always in the shadow of leggy, glamourous Daphne. Cursed by a frightening intellect and a haircut that looked like a motorcycle helmet, this member of the Scooby Doo gang was always going to play second fiddle to the more glamourous occupants of the Mystery Machine.

However, Miss Dinkley is saved by one thing - her burning sexual desires that consumed any mortal that crossed her path. Busty Velma, never happier than when meddling with herself, hid a rampaging passion under dowdy jumpers and a geeky exterior; but unleashed, she became a wild animal devouring all in her path. Why do you think someone called "Shaggy" is a complete nervous wreck?

This passion, alas, had a dark side. Who can forget Dinkley's sudden downfall when the scandal of trading sexual favours for the framing of Old Man Hannigan from the Penny Arcade over The Innsmouth Haunting and Gold Bullion scam emerged? It's incredible what you can do with a Scooby Snack.

Highlight Episode: Velma and Daphne do Zombie Island. Leaving Freddie a twitching corpse on the beach, the girls finally manage to do some investigations of their own - each other!

Looking back, I really ought to have got out more.

Not the vote-o, again

Once again, I'll be up to my elbows in it tomorrow, so I won't be able to prepare a fresh Scary Story. Instead, covered in fresh sticky-back plastic, will be one I prepared earlier - a tale of mirth, woe and singed arses.

The Scaryduck Archive

Wednesday, June 23, 2004

Return to the Museum of Crap

Return to the Museum of Crap

Neil Gaiman, in his breath-taking American Gods, describes tourist traps and roadside attractions as America's shrines and centres of devotion in a society, if not Godless, is struggling for history and identity. The same could be said for the many attractions in Britain. They're God-awful.

How else could you explain the mysterious House of Fishes in Cornwall, not a million miles away from Flambards Theme Park ("Britain's 49th Best Tourist Attraction!") and the vastly overhyped, overpriced and desperately ordinary Eden Project. Which just goes to show that rewards and reputation count for little with an easily pleased public. Dinosaur Museum in Dorchester take note - a fine way to spend fifteen minutes in an old school house with a rubber Iguanadon.

I've been about a bit. I've seen some real shit. Blackpool Wax Museum for starters. It's up there in the "so bad it's brilliant" bracket, where every single waxwork, be they of Prince Phillip or Diana Ross all look like Paul Daniels with a hump.

When holidaying in Spain, I foolishly parted with far too much money to visit the Magaluf Sealife Park - a crumbling pile of concrete and miserable animals. The proprietors, with absolutely no sense of irony, advertised it as "the best zoo in Europe". In which case, I'd hate to see the worst, but then I've been to Newquay Zoo, a place so full of chavs and wankers, that the animals appear to be on the outside.

I'm going to be controversial here and mention The Mary Rose in Portsmouth. We all know that Pompey's a shithole to start with, but when all is said and done, the flagship of Henry VIII's fleet is just a lump of wood in an aircraft hangar. If I wanted to see wood, I may as well have gone to Jewson's.

Feh. Most brilliantest tourist attraction is one that is hardly advertised - the ghost walks in York. Meet up at a pub, and an actor - in our case, a "resting" pre-fame Kevin Whatley - will show you round creepy courtyards and alleyways scaring the shit out of you for a modest fee. Most towns now have one - I daren't go on the Weymouth walk in case it is a) crap or b) freaks me out.

Still, we've got a long way to go to beat the Museum of Slough. And the Hat Museum. And the Museum of Pencils. I heartily agree with our correspondant complaining that Paulton's Park is not a "hoot hoot". It's because the mascot owl isn't allowed to say "It's fucking awful, fucking awful". And Beaver World - what can I say? How many people have paid their money, only to find furry, buck-toothed river-dwellers. It's a rip off.

Model Villages. They're just shite. End of argument.

The Scaryduck Archive

Tuesday, June 22, 2004

Museum of Crap

Museum of Crap

With the summer holidays just around the corner, you'll almost certainly be looking for tourist attractions to visit in your down-time. Educational, entertaining, or just something to get out of the rain, I'm certain that somewhere there is a venue to suit your means.

So, who the blimmin' fuck thought people would swarm in their thousands to Barometer World? Big picture of Michael Fish or not on their website, you wouldn't catch me dead there.

America is littered with this kind of rubbish, and as sure as night follows day, the crap roadside attraction is slowly making its mark over here. The Museum of Bakelite - why, why why? There just aren't enough nutters to go around, surely? On second thoughts, 2.7 million people voted UKIP, so perhaps there are.

Now is the chance for you, dear reader, to promote your local crap attraction. They need visitors, they need money, and it is our mission to stamp these bastards into the ground before they spread.

The Scaryduck Archive

Monday, June 21, 2004

Faded Seaside Glamour

Faded Seaside Glamour

Down and Out: "Cup of tea, mate?"
Self: "Yeah - white with no sugar, thanks."
Down and Out: "Fugoffyousebastard."

Now, I'm not knocking my home town in any way here, but it is the last stop on the railway, and therefore attracts a certain class of drunkard. I have also seen enough socks and sandals and Burberry baseball caps to last me a lifetime.

Living where I do, I get the benefit of something you puny mortals do no - Summer Season. And what a line-up the Weymouth Pavaillion has for us this year.

Bastard Jim Fucking Davidson
Joe "Used to be on the telly" Pasquale
Heartbeat "Featuring NONE of the original cast!"
The Barron Knights, who I thought were dead.
The Black and White Minstrels (two of them, aged ninety, and whiter than the Tina Turner tribute band that is also appearing)
Rik "Pie Rentention" Waller. He's not fat, he's big-boned. He's got the biggest bones on the planet. Structural engineers are already hard at work to ensure that the Pavillion Theatre doesn't slip into the sea as Rik and his Ginsters Posse hit the stage.

On the plus side, they've just opened the Pirate Crazy Golf Course, just next door to the Sea Life Park. Yaaaaaaarrrr!!


I'd never make it as a Jedi Knight. All that time rejecting the Dark Side, dressing up in what appears to be Matalan cast-offs and sitting around in meditation. Bollocks to that, it'd drive me up the wall.

Sure, you get a light sabre, but hey, don't come running to me when you get shot in the back with a blaster. And such are the cutbacks at Jedi HQ, you've got to make the "Thruuuzzzzmmmm" noises yourself these days. The pay's crap and the hours suck. Join the dark side.

You get the girls. You get a fancy black mask and the kind of outfit bad guys would - and frequently do - kill each other for. You get to call yourself Darth Bastard and get a damn impressive space ship to cruise around Tatooine looking for talent. And let's face it, you get a better class of Jedi Mind Trick. What would you rather be saying: "These aren't the droids you're looking for" or "Come on darlin' show us your norks"? No contest.

Darth Vader gets all the girls, which is why he's always out of breath. 100% of FACT!

Dark Side, here I come!

That was a party political broadcast on behalf of the UK Independence Party


According to my referrer logs, I am the number two search result on google for "Why is van nistelrooy such an obnoxious bastard?" No fair - I want to be the number one horse-face hater in the known universe.

And the answer to the question is, of course: "Because he is, just live with it."

The Scaryduck Archive

Sunday, June 20, 2004

I Love Horses

I Love Horses

...Best of all the animals. I have been cursed for years by a poser that appeared on A Question of Sport years and years ago, and I never found out the answer. The question, which has plagued my life for the best part of two decades is this: "Which five British racecourses do not have the letters R A C or E in their names?"

Edit: Now solved.

Interesting fact I learned today while reading Bill Bryson's entertaining A Short History of Nearly Everything: Lead in petrol and CFC gasses - two of the most destructive discoveries of the twentieth century - were invented by the same man, Thomas Midgely Junior.

Ironically, he was killed by a third invention - a device of his own design that would turn him over in bed, which strangled him several years too late for the health of the planet. Ho hum.

The Moblog is thussly updated with a recent prowl along Chesil Beach.

The Scaryduck Archive

Friday, June 18, 2004

Father Abraham

Father Abraham

Sing along if you know the words; and do the actions, too, if you know them:

"Father Abraham had seven sons
And seven sons had Father Abraham
He didn't laugh
He didn't cry
All he did was go like... this
...with a left!"

It's a song with actions. As you sing the song the next time, you wave your left hand in time with the music. The next time round, it's the left and the right, and by the time you finish, it's your entire body, arms, legs, head. You look like you've got 240 volts up your arse. Now multiply this by 47, and you have the Thames Valley Air Cadets on a coach somewhere in Nottinghamshire, heading towards their summer camp at RAF Newton.

We'd gone through the entire repertoire of rugby songs that we were all far too young to know the words, from The Good Ship Venus, to Eskimo Nell and my all-time favourites, The Blacksmith's Song and Yellow Bird.

"A yellow bird
With a yellow bill
Landed on
My window sill.
I coaxed it in
With a bit of bread/cheese/shit/etc
And then I kicked it
In the head/knees/tit/something that rhymes with etc"

You don't get quality like that on Pop Idol.

What do you expect from young lads living away from home for a week? Our parents were obviously living it up at home with a "Thank Fuck They've Gone" party, so instead, we gave those in loco parentis a small slice of Hell.

The trip so far had not gone well. There had been the unfortunate mooning of a little old lady in Newark, who had the presence of mind to recognise an RAF charabanc when she saw one, and got the CO to come down on us like a ton of bricks. Not quite an afternoon in the cookhouse peeling spuds, but close - three hours marching up and down the drill square, shouted at by some tit of a military policeman with a peaked cap.

But back to Father Abraham. I can't for the life of me remember where we'd been, so I must presume it was somewhere crap; just endless Midlands market towns and the entire catalogue of filthy songs. Even the officers sung along - away from their wives for the week, and only the driver, for fear of putting us all in a ditch, was unable to join in with the actions.

Done properly, Father Abraham can last a good ten minutes, especially if you go round twice. And God alone knows what it looks like to other road users. When you're at the song's climax, on your back with arms and legs in the air like a fly that's overdone it on the DDT, you don't really care. But one man did. Step forward the CO, a man who had flown in the Battle of Britain for idiots like us, barely hiding his disgust at the juvenile spectacle.

"Gentlemen," he said, preening his moustache as we eventually piped down, "now that I've got your attention, could I draw your attention to the vehicle that's been behind us for the last five miles?"

Police? Royalty? Our parents? Wrong on all counts.

Ian the Shed took a peek from his prime position in the centre of the coveted middle seat of the coach's back five.

"Oh Christ on a shitting bike!" he cried, his face a mask of horror.

Behind us was a white minibus. White, except for a few red decorations and some fancy writing. The phrase that spelled our doom.

"Variety Club Sunshine Coach"

And it was packed full of disabled kids and their helpers - all staring at the RAF bus in front, their mouths the same "O" shape.

Shed again: "We're fucked."

"Ging gang goolie, anyone?"

You know, peeling potatoes for an entire afternoon isn't really that bad once you get the hang of it.

The Scaryduck Archive

Thursday, June 17, 2004

An Illustrated Life

An Illustrated Life

Scaryduck: Now with Mobloggy goodness. That's a weblog full of photos for those of you who don't speak fluent geek. You may even get to see what I look like.

No Thursday vote-o today as I'm hellishly busy and will impose an unused story on you lot tomorrow. Instead, take a look at this little number I tossed off while waiting for a train...

Diary of a Superhero

Up with the lark and ready to save the world again. See that Superman's been putting himself about again, the glory-seeking bastard. Helped Mrs Brzezicki get her cat out of a tree, and hung around the mall will Hyperboy until the security guards made us leave. I'll give those fascists "Rag Week". The Batphone hasn't rung for two weeks now. Bored. Let Alfred wear the Batsuit tonight, he seems to like it.

Mrs Brzezicki was at my door today in the shortest skirt I have ever seen. My X-Ray Bat-vision told me she was also wearing the crotchless knicks again. It must be hell living with incontinence. Rescued her cat from a tree again, while she wittered on endlessly about my hairy bat-chest and smooth, manly pants-on-the-outside costume. Still nothing on the Batphone. Caught Robin in a compromising position with a piece of liver. Tenderising it for dinner, my arse.

Liver for dinner, took to my bed early and wanked myself senseless over Wonder Woman. Will this torture never end?

Digusted yet? Continues over on Robber Rabbit.

Childhood Heroes

Number 1: Windy Miller

A man of very few words who diced with death every time he left his front door. Had no mouth, and wore a hat which was the prototype for Oddjob's in the film Goldfinger.

Carried on a torrid affair with Mrs Dingle the postmistress, until he walked in her her getting a spitroast from Captain Snort or PC McGarry (Number 452). Often seen at Pippin Fort, where his "Last Turkey in the Shop" always went down a treat with the troops.

Highlight episode: his award-winning performance in the 1967 Camberwick Green classic "Windy punches Mrs Honeyman in the nadger."

The Scaryduck Archive

Wednesday, June 16, 2004

Donkey Sex

Thank you to Ionicus for this link, which, as a concerned parent, has shaken my confidence in Ribena Toothrot as a brand. All I can say is: "Good God, have they gone mad?" There's even pictures of a man loving his donkey, which has, I bet you any money, realistic orifices. No wonder he's smiling.

"Daddy, what's that man doing to that donkey?"

"He's riding him back to the stables."

"No he's not, daddy, he's giving it The Sex."

My, how quickly they grow up.

Pub Names

Pubs are great. Not only do you get to sit round tiny, sticky tables breathing in other peoples' cigarette smoke, but you also get to make yourself stupidly drunk, forget to go to college for six months and fail your A-Levels. Thanks, pubs, you totally rock!

What I really like about pubs, and you may call me a sad bastard here, are the names that many go by. I used to work in a pub by the name of the Old Devil, which sadly got its moniker because the landlord thought it better than "The New Inn". It's the unusual ones that grab me - like the Bag 'o Nails in Bristol, a corruption of the word "Bacchinals", which, you've got to agree, is rather spiffy.

The trouble these days is that many pubs names are now dreamed up by by committee of advertising executives, who use terms like "target social group" before coming up with something dreadfully americanised and ending with an 's. Hence the Jack of Both Sides in Reading (surely the hardest pub, ever) became the puntastic "Upin Arms" and there's no end of oh-so-hilarious xxxx and Firkins up and down the country.

Whatever happened to tradition, or is it just too boring? There's even a Moon Under Water on the Charing Cross Road, a nod to a fictional pub in a George Orwell essay, and I don't know if this is a good or bad thing. Full of art students and tourists.

There's nothing worse than returning to a much treasured pub to find it re-themed, re-branded and re-named, with all the beer replaced by generic piss, or worse still, "Sorry sir, we don't sell pints". "Irish" pubs where not even the Guinness is Irish any more, "fun" bars where you can't hear the eprson next to you speak, but dammit, you're having fun, and now, the Aussie pub, where there's a pipe connecting the toilets to the beer taps, and perpetual motion has been invented at last.

God, I need a drink. Wanker's Fun Pub, anyone?


Apparantly, there's some kind of football tournament going on somewhere in Portugal. After watching the match between Sweden and Bulgaria, guess which team I drew in the office sweep? Hint: Bulgaria lost 5-0 and played like they were trying out for the Special Olympics. Fuck my luck.

The Scaryduck Archive

Tuesday, June 15, 2004


The trouble with being an international terrorist, freedom fighter or revolutionary is the puzzle of what to do with yourself once the glorious struggle is over. Take a look at Che Guevara - he fought shoulder to shoulder with Castro, and was rewarded with a position in Fidel's revolutionary government. But instead of settling down in a nice semi-detatched with Mrs Che, he got bored with the office job, and went jaunting around South America with his biggest gun. Result: dead. That'll learn him.

You can bet your bottom dollar that the world is crawling with ageing former terrorists, trying to convince prospective employers that "1983-1987 Ulster Freedom Fighters" and "1987-2002 A-Wing Long Kesh Prison" are legitimate careers before being allowed to flip burgers. Desperately trying to go straight, what are these people doing now (apart from all that drug dealing, punishment beatings and stuff)?

I can exclusively reveal that when he's not making prank phone calls to Dr Ian Paisley ("I'll give ye Amanda Kissenhug ye fenian BASTAAARD!") former cough freedom fighter and Sinn Fein bigwig Martin McGuinness sait at home, in his favourite armchair, reminiscing over the good old days when a knee-cappingreally meant something; hand hovering over the trigger as Mrs McGuinness hogs the Sky remote again. Johnny "Mad Dog" Adair, on the other hand, hasn't masturbated so much for years.

The same goes for all those Black Novembers, Carlos the Jackals, Baader-Meinhofs, former members of Chilean and Serbian death squads and Showaddywaddy. All sitting about twiddling their thumbs (if they still possess them) waiting for the next good cause to come along so they can get out there and shoot people in the name of freedom. What a waste.

What I propose, then, is that these people should be contacted forthwith and offered gainful employment in some part of the world where they can run around with big guns and knives with harly any grown-up supervision and nobody notices if a few thousand people end up dead. Like, for example, Iraq.


Looks like somebody beat me to this brilliant idea already. Damn you arch-nemesis Rumsfeld, you win this time!

The Scaryduck Archive

Sunday, June 13, 2004

Bog plus Log equals Blog - incisive political comment cunningly disguised as a barely sane anecdote on novelty poop

Strange goings-on at the Circle K. The kind of thing, dear reader, that may have you doubting my sanity. No change there, then; but fame, fortune and a front page spread in the Daily Sport have eluded me once again in the cruellest possible manner.

To tell the truth, I'm recovering from having just done a turd that looked EXACTLY like Mother Teresa of Calcutta, the so-called Saint of the Gutters and drinking buddy of our very own Princess Di, Queen of All our Hearts. Such was my awe at this obvious divine fecal miracle that I accidentally flushed it down the pan before I had the chance to fish it out and flog it on Ebay to an astonished world. I would have done it properly too - certificate of authenticity signed by the Pope an' all that. Once again fate mocks me.

We all know by now that Cherie Blair's an AAA+++ ebay buyer - I'm certain she would have paid me cold, hard cash for such a desirable item to cheer her slacker of a husband up while he goes out looking for a new job. After all, he's going to be spending much of the next week taunted by a turd in the shape of Robert Kilroy-Silk.

The Scaryduck Archive

Saturday, June 12, 2004


With the Eurovision Song contest come and gone with barely a flicker, it is time we sat down and asked ourselves the questions that really matter in the world of cheese-flavoured entertainment:

Who'd win a fight between The Dooleys and the Nolan Sisters?

Obviously, it would be just a little one-sided, so I'm more than willing to allow the Nolan girls to recruit a few friends in the shape of Leo Sayer and a lightly-oiled Noosha Fox to even things up. But when all is said and done our experts are still convinced there can be only one outcome: a resounding victory for The Dooleys, with the Nolans not being in the mood for dancing for a long time to come.

After all, it is clear from this evidence that they are all hairy-arsed builders in drag, bringing the serious art of z-list celebrity brawling down to the farcical levels of heavyweight boxing. A sad day for sport.

I am not mad.

The Scaryduck Archive

Thursday, June 10, 2004

Vote-o Thursday

Now, this is a bit embarrassing. I've left the file with all the Scary Stories on another computer, so I can't for the life of me remember which ones I've completed in time for tomorrow's post.

So... using your skill, judgement and knowledge of the recurring themes of nudity, explosions and humiliation, why not suggest a Scary Story you'd like to see here? It can't be any worse than any of the tales of mirth and woe I've got lined up.

Best suggestion wins a small prize, because I'm feeling uncharacteristically generous today. Quick! Before I change my mind.

The Scaryduck Archive

Wednesday, June 09, 2004

Cornwall II - The Curse of An Gof

Who the buggering hell planned the roads in Cornwall - Helen Keller? The ideal Cornish "road" is a single track of dirt with grass growing up the middle, surrounded by twelve-foot high hedges. It should lead precisely nowhere, and have as many blind ninety degree bends as possible; which will deliver you directly into the middle of a herd of cows accompanied to the milking parlour by an old fella with trousers held up by string, face agog at one of these new-fangled horseless carriages bearing down on him.

A short-cut, then, from the local shop back to Dad's house - a distance of four hundred yards - took an entire morning of careering around this maze of primitive tracks, hopelessly searching for familiar landmarks, or at the very least, a signpost. A tiny, unnamed village rose out of the morning like a Brigadoon, and seconds later it was gone, never to been seen again for another century.

Navigating by the sun, we eventually hit the A30 at Redruth - a town so drab, grey and lifeless, the building of a Tesco superstore had the locals out on the streets with rakes and flaming torches and a burning effigy of Jacques Delors as the infernal, satanic bulldozers went about their task - and we arrived home just as a search party was being organised.

"You were a bloody long time. Where the hell have you been?"

"I. Don't. Know."

The emergency rations consumed, we were marooned, starving in a hostile land.

The only thing that ever happened in Redruth was the famous theft of the "Million Pounds in Five Pound Notes" display from the Cornish Goldsmiths tourist attraction. The thieves completely ignored the thousands of pounds worth of gold jewellery, and ran off with the none-more-tacky display case of fivers, containing no more than three hundred quid of real money, and a awful lot of fiver-sized paper. It never once struck the crooks that a small tourist attraction in the arse end of the South West really would have a million quid to put on display, but there's no accounting for stupidity.

Ebay News

Cherie Blair's eBay profile. She's bought Fuck-Me shoes and an Aladdin video, obviously to brief her husband on Middle East policy.

Nice to see someone earning a fortune as a senior lawyer paying 1.99 for a Winnie the Pooh alarm clock. Obviously living next door to Gordon Brown has paid off.

The Scaryduck Archive

Tuesday, June 08, 2004


My dad's gone native. He's spent the last decade or so living in the West of Cornwall, and apart from an unfortunate incident in which he resigned as chairman of Falmouth Bowling Club - the word "grockle" was mentioned by one of the more established members who can trace Cornish ancestry for at least three hundred years - he has done a pretty smart job at blending in with the yokels.

However, he's taken it too far. Okay, I can live with the obligatory flag of St Piran in the back window of the car, the unremitting diet of pasties, never-ending references to rugby union and the name-dropping of local celebrities ("So I said to Rick Stein..."), but it's the OTHER thing I can't handle.

"Bloody tourists. Coming down here and buying our houses..."

As my brother so rightly pointed out: "Dad! You're from Essex! You bought a holiday cottage in Falmouth and stayed here. You're a GROCKLE! You're as Cornish as a chicken tikka pastie!"

Dad's sane compared with the other buggers, mind.

Cornwall is an angry place. The atmosphere is of barely restrained aggression and frustration. There is an underlying current of xenophobia and hatred, aimed at "them", the cause of all the county's troubles. "Them" being outsiders - the European Union, London and even the proposed South West Regional Centre, as it'll be based in Plymouth or Bristol, which might as well be the moon as far as your man on the Penzance Omnibus is concerned.

"Them" is embodied in the Grockle, the holidaymakers that provide thousands of jobs and thirty per cent of the Cornish economy. And when "Grockle" isn't harsh enough, the more affluent are sneeringly refered to as "DFLs" - Down from London. I prefer to call myself "A contributor to Cornwall's continued service industry affluence, you whinging yokel". The roof box on the car, however, had me marked as a "Them".

This rage has found an outlet in the UK Independence Party, the BNP that's OK to like. Whipped up by a rabid local press (I've never seen so little balance in all my years), there are pink UKIP election placards wherever you look in Cornwall. Mostly, it has to be said, in farmers' fields - the first people to suffer when the CAP payments stop rolling in. Say what you like about EU fishing quotas, and I've heard enough in the last weekend to last a lifetime, but it'll be no use whining when you drag the last fish from the sea...

UKIP neatly solves the Cornish dilemma of someone to blame, as they both have the same enemy in the EU, the embodiment of rule from afar which so offends Cornwall. But yeah, I really want to pull our country out of the world's largest tading block and throw ourselves in with our American "allies". The same allies who make a regular habit of stabbing their most favoured nations in the back when the chips are down. Suez 1956, for example.

"Non-racist!" claims the smily Kilroy UKIP literature, the same literature that vows to ban EU immigration. This party is white, middle class, old, suspicious of outsiders, only interested in "I'm alright Jack". The BNP of the landed classes. I was glad to get over the border to Devon as see all the Conservative Party placards. I've never been so pleased to see a Tory in all my life (apart from that unfortunate business with the fragrant Teresa May).

Q: What's the difference between UKIP and the BNP?
A: A two million quid advertising budget. And fucking Robert Kilroy fucking Silk.

Meanwhile...Robber Rabbit's writing again. Only not about Kirstie Allsopp for a change.

As we're rather light on laughs today, here's a bunch of funny stories about wanking.

The Scaryduck Archive

Monday, June 07, 2004

Chav News

Let us examine the latest addition to the Pikey Index, your sure-fire measurement of all things pikey:

How many clip-on England flags do you have on your car?

0: Congratulations. You are not pikey. You may, however, be Scottish. Or Welsh.
1: "Help! My kids made me buy one at Asda." Slightly pikey.
2: "I've got Burberry socks, a fake tan and sunglasses modelled by David Beckham." Very pikey.
3 or more: "My other car is a white van. What the fack you starin' at?" Well done. You are King of the Chavs.

Just back from Cornwall, a thoroughly depressing experience of mad people and extreme right-wing politics which I shall discuss later. Falmouth is the only place I know where the town funeral director has a sideline selling gas barbecues. Just in case, like.

The Scaryduck Archive

Thursday, June 03, 2004

Osama bin Laden: The Scaryduck Connection

Gooner bin Laden
BBC Two recently screened a programme entitled "I met Osama Bin Laden", where people who had met the infamous Al Qaeda leader were able to give their impressions of the man who went from shy, moderate schoolboy to ruthless terrorist leader. They have, however, missed one vital chapter from his life, the episode that quite possibly tipped him over the edge. You see, I Met Osama Bin Laden. Probably.

March 26th 1994 - Arsenal vs Liverpool at Highbury Stadium in London. Both teams are on the decline after moments of glory at the start of the decade. Liverpool are never to attain the dizzy heights they achieved in the seventies and eighties, Arsenal are to bump along the bottom until Arsene Wenger joins the club and makes them one of the great teams in English football. But today, it is dour fare as Arsenal huff and puff to a 1-0 victory, as the home fans taunt their Liverpool counterparts with the chant "You're the worst scouse team we've ever seen."

I am in the Clock End, gleaming with newly-fitted red plastic seats, just right of centre and about ten rows from the front, after a couple of hours of selling football fanzines outside Finsbury Park Mosque. The seat in front of me is empty, affording me a decent view of the pitch.

Two minutes before kick-off, a very tall bearded Arabic gentleman limps along the row and takes the seat in front of me. My view is blocked completely, and I spend the ninety minutes staring at the back of his head, as he mutters curses at the quality of the football, aimed mostly at "that infidel Robbie Fowler." When Arsenal score, he is on his feet, applauding politely, while the rest of the stand goes mad. Then, the match over, he leaves.

It is my firm belief that paying good money to watch a team containing the likes of John "Porno Star" Jensen, "Whatever happened to" Ian Selley, Steve "Jesus, we must have been desperate" Morrow and Eddie "Get off the pitch you useless cunt" McGoldrick turned mild-mannered billionaire Osama bin Laden to the bloodthirsty homocidal maniac that we know and hate. Either that, or that match against Liverpool saw the start of a working relationship between bin Laden and Graeme "The Beast" Souness to destroy society as we know it. Stranger things have happened.

It is not until seven years later, his face known around the world, that the news comes out that a certain world's most wanted man used to frequent the Clock End at Highbury during his sojourn in London in the early 1990s and I made the connection.

I could have had him. Sorry.

Contemporary witnesses can place bin Laden in London in early 1994, and it is known that he attended the matches against Torino and Paris St Germain, as well as at least two other league matches. Spooky, huh?

The Scaryduck Archive

Tuesday, June 01, 2004


"Please listen to the following security announcement," said the pre-recorded South West Trains message. "Be vigilant. Be alert. Please report anything suspicious to a member of staff."

So I did.

Two days ago, y'see, there was a whole line of phoneboxes on Platform Three of Bournemouth station. Today there is but one, sitting there on its own in the exact position under the footbridge that allows the committed observer to look up ladies' skirts while pretending to ring for a cab. Now that's what I call suspicious.

Years ago, enterprising gangs of thieves swept out of Merseyside, armed with crowbars and shonky BT keys, ripping off the contents of telephone cashboxes, making Everton FC the power in world football it is today. But no - that's not good enough for them. These days they're running off with the entire phone box, leaving only a square of freshly laid tarmac as evidence.

Like a good citizen, I told the bloke in the ticket office. He laughed at me. See? My future in comedy is assured.

At the risk of saying "but seriously, folks", the days of the public phone box are numbered. Mobiles have virtually killed them off, and BT is removing "unprofitable" boxes at an alarming rate. I can't remember the last time I used one - either as a means of communication or a public urinal, but I dare say it was during a phase of specialist postcard collecting in central London. I was once caught sans mobile when some bloke stoved my car in on a country lane - I simply knocked on somebody's door.

Here comes the politics: yadda yadda yadda old biddies yadda we haven't all got mobiles yadda yadda emergency calls yadda yadda - no doubt you've heard it all before, and let us not forget the hoardes of unemployed tart-carders with boxes of undelivered postcards offering the services of a "busty dominatrix just off Picadilly Circus". But! We, as a society, really are heading for a huge fall with this mindless ripping out of phone boxes.

Where, pray tell me, are our superheroes going to get changed next time Lex Luthor unleashes his brain-melting death ray. In the fitting rooms of Dorothy Perkins? I think not.

How can we be vigilant if the very fabric of our society is put at risk in this manner? I feel a strongly worded letter to the Dorset Echo coming on.

I am not mad.


Ingrid has been blogging for well over a month now on ethnic cleansing in Sudan. A population of over a million black Africans are being displaced by Arab militias in Darfur, while the Muslim-dominated government looks on. Refugees escaping over the border into Chad speak of wholesale murder, rape, destruction of livestock and villages, while the world has been nicely diverted by the continuing unpleasantness in Iraq and the less-than-effective War on Terrorism. Even in Chad, these refugees are not safe, with Janjaweed militias following them over the border to continue their harrassment.

A recent peace deal has ended the twenty-one year civil war between government forces and the Sudan People's Liberation Army, who were fighting for a Christian state in the south. However, this deal does nothing to address the situation in Darfur in the West, described by the UN as "the world's worst humanitarian crisis", and little or nothing is being done to rectify the situation.

It is in the West's interests to see a stable Sudan. It is a country, after all, blessed with rich deposits of oil, which any government worth their salt would be clamouring to exploit in the current uncertain market. Secondly, Sudan has strong links to Al-Qaeda, with Osama bin Laden being based in Khartoum during the 1990s. If the West is at all interested in winning their War on Terrorism, then a peaceful solution to Sudan's problems should be fostered at the earliest convenience.

Call me Mr Cynical if you like, but the West's reluctance to get involved is absolutely nothing to do with the fact that they are pandering to Gulf oil-producing states who have them by the short and curlies with those all-important fuel reserves. At all. And you can quote me on that. While other humanitarian disasters have brought gasps of disbelief and floods of aid, Sudan has kept this genocide under wraps and away from the prying lenses of Western media. Time to stop dragging our feet, then. Time to act.

Short Break

I shall be away for the best part of a week. I will post here when I can, and will deliver Friday's Scary Story as scheduled, or die in the attempt.

Readers will be pleased to hear that I shall be in the West of Cornwall, officially the maddest place on Earth, so no doubt the experience will provide a rich vein of content for this site for many weeks to come.

The Scaryduck Archive