Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Ode to La Roux by The People's Poet

Ode to La Roux by The People's Poet

La Roux
How do you do,
La Roux?
People say your music's poo,
La Roux.
But I think it's skill,
Especially 'In For The Kill',
And your hair goes downhill,
And your mum was in The Bill,
La Roux.

The dreadful thing is this: once you start you know you just can't stop.

So, The People's Poet presents his latest masterwork:

Ode to Emmanuel Eboue

Eboue, Eboue.
You're quite handy with the ball
When you play for the Arsenal
Even though some people call
You crap, Eboue.
They're not without reason
Because you were shite last season
When you played like Liam Neeson
In the bit where he got killed TO DEATH in Star Wars
Even though we all agreed it should have been Jar Jar Binks
But now you're OK

The People's Poet demands a poem about your favourite star. Now. Do it NOW.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

On sponsored television

On sponsored television

They're going to allow product placement on television. In the near future, viewers are going to be assaulted with none-too-subtle plugs for consumer products to teach us all a lesson for zapping out all the adverts with our Sky+ boxes.

If they're going to go all Truman Show on us, why not go the whole hog? Product placement may be about to become a reality, but how about selling off the naming rights to programmes? This could conceivably rakes in millions for our television networks, at only minor inconvenience to viewers.

Let's have a look at a few deals that have already been tied up pending the government go-ahead:

- Bird's Eye Coronation Chicken Street
- News at Tena Lady

- Pie in the Sky Sports HD only £49 fully installed!
- Going for Golden Wonder

- Star Trek: Chrysler Voyager
- Electric Blue Peter

- The MaX Factor
- Watney's Party Seven Political Broadcast

- Strictly Lamb's Navy Rum Dancing
- Hole in the Wall's tasty, tasty pork sausages

Now: Your turn, while I nip off to try a tasty, tasty POT NOODLE. Mmmm.... POT NOODLE.

Monday, September 28, 2009

On defeating boredom

On defeating boredom

So. Ten ways to defeat boredom whilst trapped in long, boring meetings, presented to you in Technicolor So-that's-how-Scary-does-it-o-vision.

1. Create cut-out-and-keep pictures of your eyes which you can stick to your glasses too fool your colleagues into thinking you are awake

2. Build the biggest mountain you can from earwax mined from your right ear. Then, try to break that record with wax from the left

3. Compile a list of expected victims and survivors should your meeting be attacked by mutant lizards

4. Nod enthusiastically and agree with every crackpot proposal, then voting against them in the hope of cheering up other attendees

5. Make a family out of used coffee cups. If time and resources permit, give them full Viking funeral honours, ensuring that the occasion is fully minuted

6. Cough, sneeze and blow your nose frequently, before bringing up 'swine flu precautions' as part of 'Any other business'

7. Slip your favourite joke punchlines into statements on important, business critical subjects: "So, your action point is to ring the client straight after the meeting and tell him 'I'm not really a welder'"

8. Wait until the last slide of your manager's 90-minute Powerpoint presentation before telling him his flies are undone. Even if they aren't

9. Set your Bluetooth to read "Lick my lovepump" and see if any of your colleagues notice

10. Fake your own death. The practised employee will do this fifteen minutes before the meeting starts, and take part in his own minutes' silence

Bonus: Write a list of ten – no, eleven – way to defeat boredom in long, boring meetings

Sunday, September 27, 2009

On countdown

On countdown

To whoever it may concern,

I am shocked - SHOCKED - at what passes for a Countdown host these days. Poor, dead Carol Vorderman would be spinning in her grave. Channel 4? Channel Phwoar, more like.

Yours disgustedly, Colonel Albert O'Balsam DSC and Bar

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Pun Alert

Pun Alert

The Fragrant Mrs Duck has a dream.

A dream of a new start, a dream of world peace.

She tells me that her dream is to set up a dairy in the Middle East, selling milk-based products to customers, be they Israeli, Arab, Palestinian, Roman or leper.

And she shall call it Cheeses of Nazareth.

(Image by the incredibly talented Heather Gilbraith)

Friday, September 25, 2009

On restless spirits

On restless spirits

Our local gang of paranormal investigators, meddling with dark, dark forces of which they know nothing have hit the local press with their plans for a Hallowe'en ghostbusting extravaganza.

This, essentially, involves visiting a number of locations in the South Dorset area and poking them with their best ghost-poking sticks until something dreadful happens, for eg: the Old Dark Ones rise and feast on their very souls.

If there's one thing they ARE doing right, it's their choice of venues.


Loads and loads of pubs.

Because – BAD JOKE ALERT - you get loads of spirits in pubs.

No, really. Why do you get so many pub ghosts? Is it because they're places where people met in life, so they'd naturally congregate there in death? Or, is there a deeper meaning?

Or, are freely available supplies of brain-rot the answer?

I feel it is my duty to contact my new pals at the Weymouth Paranormal Investigation Team (Warning: Loud website) to find out.

Dear Weymouth PIT,

Congratulations on being Weymouth's top paranormal investigation team!

In recognition of your forthcoming pub crawl serious scientific exploration of other-worldly phenomena in various licensed premises in the South Dorset area, I thought you might like to hear about my encounter with malevolent spirits in and around the public bar of the Old Castle Hotel and Ruan Thai restaurant in Weymouth.

An enjoyable evening in my local public house, in which I consumed a several pints, was somewhat ruined when a poltergeist hurled me bodily to the ground in the street outside, leaving me bloodied and bruised.

When I came to, I was covered head-to-toe with ectoplasm, which, as we all know from previous studies of public house-based paranormal events, looks exactly like six pints of heavy and four packets of "Nobby's" dry roast peanuts.

As I staggered to my feet, a voice told me to "walk toward the light". So I did, and got run over by a passing moped. A passing moped with A HEADLESS RIDER, which had fallen through an apport from another parallel, ghostly dimension.

Then I was sick in a hedge.

It was while I was being sick in a hedge, ghostly orbs dancing in front of my eyes, that I came face-to-face what could only have been a LEOPARD. I could tell it was a leopard, despite the pink collar bearing the somewhat inaccurate name tag "Tiger", through my years of training as a lion tamer.

We all know that so-called Big Cat sightings go hand-in-hand with ghostly happenings (witness poor, dead Derek Acorah being carried away to his doom by a flock of lions in a recent episode of 'Ghost Towns'), so this was clearly 100 per cent of proof of my previous experiences.

If you want to add the Old Castle to your pub crawl serious scientific exploration of other-worldly phenomena, meet me in the public bar at 8 o'clock tonight. You're paying.

Your pal, Albert O'Balsam

Thursday, September 24, 2009

On Internet Gold

On Internet Gold

I am indebted to Private Eye's Adam MacQueen for finding a goldmine of 100 per cent web-based awesomeness.

As you might know, the Prime Minister's website allows people to set up their own petitions, which the PM's staff can then ignore at their leisure.

Every now and then, a wildly popular issue will draw comment from Number Ten, but what, asks Adam, happens to the petitions with no signatures except for the poor sap who thought them up? For example, the fella who wants the sex offenders act changed to allow you to shag your auntie.

Answer: We point at them. We point at them and laugh.

Allow James Bond movies to be made tax-free - He should have pilfered all that gold from Fort Knox when he had the chance

decrease funding of un-necessary things - such as government procurement of 10,000 space hoppers for the armed forces

REVERSE PLANNING CONSENT CHELMSFORD BC 08/01235/EIA - Stone the crows, sir, these plans could KILL US ALL

tax rich people more - "The reason their is so much poverty is because the rich people have so much money they can get more money."

Ban All Loudspeakers - "Because they're like guns" - only without all the killing TO DEATH, obviously

Change planning laws to redefine pylons as wind turbine - Once planning law has been changed to make wind turbines the same as pylons, Pylons already in situ can then be replaced with wind turbines. Riiiiight….

i would like the prime minister to let children have a childrens credit card - because the economy's not fucked up enough as it is

Send a team of scientists and historians back to the moon or to mars and do filmed research. - No, you go first. You're halfway there as it is.

Gordon Clown's ZaNu LieBore's done this to us. More of this unholy turdspurt from the hive-mind of our doomed nation as and when I find them.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

On pitching for an ITV game show

On pitching for an ITV game show

Watching ITV's latest gameshow - The Cube, in which members of the public battle against a large glass box for genuine cash money - got me wondering whether I could do better. And yes, dammit, I can.

Seriously, if we can pull this one off, this time next year Rodders, we really would be millionaires.

All I've got to do is get past the scary-looking chap on the ITV front desk (perhaps by telling him that I am looking for Haile Selsssie), find the commissioning editor's office and pitch these little beauties to him before I am shown the door.

It's not being shown the door I'm afraid of, mind you. It's being shown the pavement outside, face first.

1. A fast-moving all-action game show, in which contestants battle against a large, curly hair for cash prizes in a number of tense puzzles and challenges. Phillip Schofield to host. Working title: The Pube.

2. A fast-moving all-action game show, in which contestants compete for cash prizes in a number of tense puzzles and challenges inside Jimmy Carr's arse. Phillip Schofield to host. Working title: The Lube.

3. A fast-moving all-action game show, in which contestants compete for cash prizes by trading in clearly fake celebrity pornography. Phillip Schofield to host. Working title: The Badly-photoshopped picture of Holly Willoughby's Boob.

4. A fast-moving all-action game show, in which contestants take vast quantities of mind-bending drugs, go to bed with a mad Japanese woman and get assassinated by a gun-toting crazy. Phillip Schofield to host. Working title: The Goo Goo Ga Joob.

And they say television's run out of ideas.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009



High time we dropped in on our old pal Samuel Pepys to see how he's getting on. One hopes that it's not something dreadful, like, you know, having his arse painted black by persons unknown. Oh.

February 13th 1667: Awok'n before dawn by shouts of "Fire!" com'ng from outside. "Pull ye other one, it has brasse knobbes on" I shout to the miscreants, for I have been dragg'd from my sleep every night since September last who think it funny to make light of ye Great Fyre so soon after London's Weeke of Tragedy. Besides, we are still liv'ng under My Lord Sandwich's roof since our abode fell victim to the flames, despite it being several miles from the main conflagration and ye insurance losse adjustor call'ng me a "chanc'ng bastard".
Imagine my surprise, then, to find my breeches set aflame as I sleep, my buttocks shin'd with boot-black and a lit candle shov'd up my arsehole. I have, dear diary, fall'n victim to YE DRED'D ARSE POLISHER OF OLDE LONDON TOWN

February 14th 1667: Still weak from my ordeal, I am visit'd by a Mr Grissom of ye Night Watch, who makes several and various measurements of my still blacken'd haunches with instruments beyond my understand'ng. He tells me that he will use SCIENCE, MATHS and a big magnifying glass to capture the blackguard. I thiank him kindly, keen to leave the scene of this dreadful crime and settle my lusts on Saint Valentine's Night with the most expensive slattern my fortune will allow. Alas, hav'ng paid a florin to Warty Alice, she laugh'd at my black arse and I was unable to perform the Acts of Venus upon her. Worse, she brought my attention to a sign which reads NOE REEFUNDS INN ANE SIRCUMSTANSES. Deflat'd returned to our cell at My Lord Sandwich's house, and so to bed.

February 15th 1667: Office day. Settl'd the accounts for HMS Antelope, HMS Plunger and HMS Death to the Papists, just return'd from the Indies. Grissom call'd to say that by use of SCIENCE, MATHS and his big magnifying glass, he has determin'd the culprit has left a clue on my still blackened fundament, viz: a hand-print, and would like to inspect it further. However, I declin'd to present the evidence in the office as My Lords Sandwich and Downing were both present with their wives. "That is how it should be," said Grissom. "We shall perform the amputation elsewhere. Perhaps in the street outside."
It transpires that the experiments that Watchman Grissom is to undertake can only be carried out on a corpse, and I point'd out that I am very much alive, damn'ng his wig for his lack of observation.

February 16th 1667: A great wail'ng rous'd me from my slumbers before dawn. My charm'ng wife Elizabeth nowhere to be seen, I rush upstairs to My Lord Sandwich's chambers to find My Lord face down in his bed, breeches alflame on his night-stand and his Lordly Arse blacker than the night, room lit by the candle protrud'ng from his chocolate starfish. There can be no doubt: Ye Dred'd Arse Polisher of Olde London Town has struck again. Rush'ng to the near'st tavern to find help, I meet my wife, cover'd in boot-black. She tells me - in some distress - that she was runn'ng to rouse the servants when she fell into a silage pit, emerg'ng to look like someone who was cover'd in boot-black, but it was silage. Silage. Hav'ng found no help in the tavern, I stay there for the next sixteen hours, in case some help should arrive.

February 17th 1667: The reign of terror continues. In the last night Ye Dred'd Arse Polisher of Olde London Town has attack'd on no less than nine occasions, the victims all be'ng males known to My Lord Sandwich, all their breeches set aflame, all with arses expertly shin'd to the rare buff that my darl'ng wife puts into my fin'est boots. One fart'd, sett'ng fire to three houses, and rumour abounds that the Archbishop of Canterbury has awoken to find his rear blacker than the dark'st pits of HELL.
Alas, Grissom is no closer to solv'ng theese terrible crimes, and still insists on amputat'ng the buttocks of the poor victims to inspect at his leisure. Growi'ng weary of his excuses, I confront him in his rooms, whereupon the cur breaks down and confesses: "I'truth, I am not a watchman. I just like bottoms. Is it a crime?"

February 18th 1667: I arrive home late after celebrat'ng the solv'ng of these heinous crimes with my fellow victims to find my darl'ng wife still scrubb'ng the foul-smell'ng silage from her blacken'd hands. "That Grissom was bloody well hung" she told me. "No he wasn't, my love. They cut his head off." Such innocence. And so to bed.

Monday, September 21, 2009

On poor, dead H from Steps

On poor, dead H from Steps

In these days of global terrorism and the continuing recession, it's easy to forget the simple things in life, such as neglecting to execute a mob contract on H from Steps, made to look like a run-of-the-mill death by bizarre space-hopper accident.

Needless to say, I might well fit the 90's Welsh pop sensation into my busy schedule. However, readers might be interested to know how poor, dead H from Steps has shaped our modern lives:

- Tragic pop star H from Steps turned to a life in the entertainment industry after being put up for adoption by his Secret Service parents "M" and "Q". He has never met his twin brother LL Cool J and has no idea of his successful music career.

- In his native Welsh language, H from Steps is known as "H from Steps, isn't it?"

- After winning his copyright case, every time you use the letter "H", you must pay H from Steps 0.0000000001p. To get around this, web users are encouraged to use |-| instead. Up yours, |-| from Steps!

- H from Steps prides himself on being the first celebrity to take the official Big Bus tour of Jordan's chuff. Unimpressed, he successfully asked for his money back.

- Less than two weeks after the deadly 9/11 terror attacks, H from Steps took part in the promotion of the band's latest single, a cover of the Bee Gees' "Chain Reaction". Coincidence, or a warning to Al Qaeda of the forthcoming invasion of Afghanistan?

- H from Steps is the only man in the western world to know the current whereabouts of public enemy Osama bin Laden, having been whisked to his secret bunker somewhere in +++CARRIER LOST+++ for a personal performance of hit single "One for Sorrow"

- One of the few pop stars to invest his fortune wisely, H from Steps has already paid for his final resting place:

- A pronunciation guide: The 'H' is silent

- H from Steps lost both his thumbs in a bizarre space-hopper accident on the set of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. Forced to clutch objects like a small, flightless bird in a zoo, H from Steps has turned to the only career path open to him: posing as a small, flightless bird in a zoo.

- Before he found fame as H from Steps, H from Steps went round the celebrity circuit as Ken from Bros. Earlier this year he became a YouTube hit as the ugly one from Susan Boyle.

Poor, dead H from Steps - we salute you.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Top Tip

Top Tip

Dear Top Tips

MUMS! Still breast-feeding your school-age children?

Freeze your breast milk on a stick and - hey presto! - a tasty, nutricious bitty 'Mini Milk' ice lolly all kids can enjoy!

Your pal, Ernie Fastestmilkmaninthewest, Highgate

Inspired by THIS B3ta Question of the Week story.

Friday, September 18, 2009

On not being on fire

On not being on fire

The phone rings.

I run downstairs.

"You're on fire!" shouts a shrill, yet cultured female voice.


"You're on fire! I can see the smoke!"

I run outside, clutching the phone. I am, it turns out, not on fire.

"Are you sure I'm on fire?"

"Yes!" says Mrs Shrill, now even more shrill and slightly less cultured, "I'm in Preston and I can see the smoke and the flames."

Preston is on the other side of town.

"Hang on...who do you think I am?"


"I'm in Wyke Regis and I am most certainly not on fire. If there is one thing missing from my life at the moment, it is the discovery of fire."

"Are you sure?"

"Yes. Yes I am. I was just about to take a shower, I'll have you know."

"Oh. Sorry. Must be a wrong number, then."

"Also, I am in my front garden and naked."


Pants on fire.

Alternative ending suggested by the girl Scaryduckling

"No worries, love. We're just getting rid of a few excess swans. You couldn't pop over to Morrisons for a bottle of barbecue sauce?"

Thursday, September 17, 2009

On my favourite subject, again

On my favourite subject, again

Yes, my life has been entirely taken over by meetings.

There are even meetings which have the sole purpose of deciding on the agenda for future meetings.

However, I have learned to enjoy these events, which I no longer see as a complete waste of time, but are now an opportunity to decide who lives and who goes against the wall when I come to rule a meetingless world.

The two worst words you can hear in any meeting – I have discovered – particularly a long, dull one in which a circular argument has gone round enough times to bring you to the verge of particularly violent murder are these:

"Yeah, but..."

"Yeah, but..." – two words that add hours, days to meetings

"Yeah, but..." – two words that are exhausting my alibis with the Thames Valley Serious Crime Squad as colleague find – through no fault of mine – themselves on the "martyred but not forgotten" board

"Yeah, but..." is costing me a fortune in pickaxe handles, tin baths and sacks of quicklime

"Yeah, but…" is forcing me to find another run-down industrial estate to dispose of my martyred-but-not-forgotten former colleagues

People – why can't we avoid all this violent, sticky "Yeah, but..." unpleasantness and all get along? On my terms, naturally.

See also: "We need to take this offline and schedule another meeting to discuss this", for this is just another road to HELL and PAINFUL DEATH

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Cupo. On Cupo. Cupo

Cupo. On Cupo. Cupo

Hello. I am Scaryduck Junior and I am excellent.

Ted runs the Pokemon Club at our school. This makes his a dweeb, a geek and a nerd, for I would never take part in such and activity as long as an internet exists.

Ted is a little bit strange because he has to say the word "cupo" at the beginning and the end of everything he says.

For eg: "Cupo. Good morning. Cupo."

If we play our cards right we could make his head ACTUALLY explode. For eg, again:

"Cupo. Good morning. Cupo."

"What's that you keep saying, Ted?"

"Cupo. It's 'cupo'. Cupo."

"Repeat that, plz?"

"Cupo. Cupo 'cupo' cupo. Cupo."

And so on, forever, until you deliver the final, deadly shot:

"Oh, I meant to tell you, Ted. Your dog's dead*"


Ted is sixteen years old.

Degree of difficulty: Cupo. All comments must follow strict 'cupo' grammar. Cupo.

* Cupo. Ken Dodd's dad's dog's dead as well. Cupo.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

On The Stig, again

On The Stig, again

So, who is The Stig, then?

There's been loads of rumours, the Michael Schumacher red herring, not to mention the official denial from former Prime Minister John Major.

I am, then, pleased to announce that the mystery is solv-ed.

Take a look at this here picture posted to the internets by TV's Danny Wallace on his Twitter account.

"Ah ha!" I hear you say. The redoubtable Mr Wallace with what appears to be the Audi R8. And, if I am not mistaken, that's the Top Gear test track in darkest Surrey."

Yes. You are correct. But look again. Look at the CAR.

Obvious, isn't it?

The Stig is a Transformer.

Pie-eating racing driver by day, gas-guzzling executive toy by night.

Think about it - you never see The Stig and Optimus Prime in the same room together.

You read it here first.

And, to be honest, you ain't gonna read it anywhere else.

Monday, September 14, 2009

On getting into the charity business

On getting into the charity business

This picture, as seen on another blog...

...yeah, sorry about that... has given me a spunker of an idea for a new money-making venture.

Did I say money-making venture? I meant charity. CHARITY.

By way of a caption, one reader had written: "For Sale or Rent: Toys for Boys and one Boy Toy."

Good grief, I thought. Either Bill Bailey's really let himself go, or the standard of toyboys has really slipped recently. You'd have to be blind to… CH-CHING!

And that, dear reader, is the exact moment the "This time next year, Rodders, we'll be millionaires" gene kicked in, and it's just a matter of marrying up two urgent needs.

1. Fat, ugly blokes still need to get laid, if only for the good of society in general

2. Blind women still need toyboys, and will probably believe you if you say you are sending a George Clooney-a-like round for a small charitable consideration

So, I announce my new charitable money-making venture:

Toyboys for the Blind

It's like the whole Guide Dogs thing they've got going on, only providing an essential service for these poor, ugly blokes. No wait. The other way round.

Still trying to work my way around the whole body odour problem, but one obstacle at a time, eh?

Please send cash, tinfoil, women with a low quality threshold.

This time next year, Rodders, we'll be millionaires.

Friday, September 11, 2009

On Ham

On Ham

The other week, I was preparing lunch in our communal kitchen (twinned with Manila Municipal Tip) when I had a bit of an accident with somebody's pork products.

As I reached into the packed fridge for my tub of 'I Can't Believe It's Not Buttocks' – clearly marked with the words 'Beware of the Leopard' to deter gangs of food thieves – I dislodged a number of precariously-balanced items, which toppled to the floor with a splat.

The antique yoghurts were fine, as was the plastic container full of salad that was busily evolving into a higher life form. But it was what I found at the bottom of the pile, tumbling out of its shoddy packaging, that has led to my trouser-dampening quandary.

And the question I ask is this:

Was I right to apply the Five-Second Rule to the three slices of ham that left a damp, greasy ring on the floor of the kitchen?
Degree of Difficulty: I have watched my colleagues in the days since the incident. None have died complaining of an ill-advised lunch of hairy ham sandwiches.

Tomato Ketchup sandwiches - The Food of Gods.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

On things you should ask Derek Acorah if you really, really want to annoy him

On things you should ask Derek Acorah if you really, really want to annoy him

A short list of things you should ask Derek Acorah if you really, really want to annoy him:

- "Why don't you get ghosts in hospitals?"

- "Do you get ghost dogs? What about goldfish? I swear my fish tank's haunted." (Answer, according to D. Acorah himself, is 'Yes'. In fact ghost dogs speak to Derek through spirit guide Sam. They go 'Woof woof woof')

- "Why was it – when you filmed a Most Haunted in the Netherlands – all the ghosts spoke English?"

- "Ken Dodd's dad's dog's dead – does he have a message from the other side?"

"How's Kreed Kafer?"

- "Zombies, right? They're technically dead. Do they have ghosts as well as the physical body they're shambling about in, clamouring for brains? What about vampires?"

- "Do ghosts do the sex? Do they? What's ghost porn like? Can you, like, lay your hands on some for me?"

- "When you do live stage shows, do all the grannies smell of wee?"

You: "Could you ask my Aunty Marge what she did with the money in the teapot?"
Acorah: "I'll ask my spirit guide Sam to try to contact her, how long has she been dead?"
You: "She's not. She's got a bungalow in Birkenhead and doesn't talk to us any more."

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

On Egg. Ped Egg

On Egg. Ped Egg

To the shops and a present for my charming wife – one of those Ped Egg things they've been advertising on the electric television.

Just the thing if you've got square feet and need something to file off the edges without drawing blood and bleeding all over the house.

And what a present! The finest As-seen-on-TV JML precision engineering – nothing says "No offence, darling, but you've got square feet" quite like it.

You could tell she was pleased with my thoughtful gift by the way she said nothing at all, and ran, sobbing tears of joy, to our bedroom, joyfully slamming the door behind her.

And my reward. What a reward!

My favourite dinner – a specially-prepared Spaghetti Bolognaise.

With lashings and lashings of freshly-grated parmesan.

Om nom nom, and indeed, nom.

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

On local newspaper photography, again

On local newspaper photography, again

Pic heinously stolen from Glum Councillors blogA man's got to have a hobby, and – apart from all the crapping through letterboxes business which is soon to be banned for Health and Safety reasons - mine just happens to be local newspaper photo spotting.

There's nothing I like better than stumbling across a photo in a local newspaper of angry-looking people pointing at holes in roads, piles of litter or the steaming turd on their doormat. In fact, I am thrilled to discover there are others like me as the excellent Glum Councillors blog proves.

The one thing that puzzles me, however, is the fact that everybody and their dog wants to be a press photographer, so only the best, most ridiculously qualified and frighteningly talented photographers are taken on by the local press at insultingly low salaries.

In return, they are sent out on soul-crushing missions to take pictures of fete openings, vicars and angry people pointing at holes in roads or the steaming turd on their doormat.

No wonder some rebel.

No wonder some try to get something under the radar.

I thought I had seen it all until I came across this one in the Reading Evening Post.

An oh-so-sensitive report on one women's torment and ongoing mental issues at living next to a convicted sex offender.

Ladies and gentlemen, I give you the Evening Post's "Naked neighbour ‘put me off men’" illustrated with this outstanding example of the genre of local press photography:

Good Lord – Ronnie Barker's really let himself go.

Monday, September 07, 2009

On Top Tips

On Top Tips

CRIMINALS: Banned from driving? A space-hopper makes an ideal portable getaway vehicle for acts of suburban petty theft.

R Biggs, London

HOUSEWIVES: Always spread drawing pins on your garden path in case you are attacked by fiends on space-hoppers.

V. Lynn, Dover

CRIMINALS: If you are embarking on a space hopper-based crime spree, be sure to invest in a decent puncture repair kit. Alternatively, one of TV personality Jordan's used breast implants makes a handy spare in case of unexpected bursting when being pursued by the local constabulary.

R Biggs, HMP Wakefield

POLICE OFFICERS: Gauge the level of crime activity on your beat by demanding sales figures for space hoppers from your local branch of Argos. Round up the equivalent number of crims, and - Hey Presto! No more crime!

S Holmes, Baker Street

Saturday, September 05, 2009

On saving Lord Likely for a grateful nation

On saving Lord Likely for a grateful nation

The world's Greatest Lord Ever tells me that his insanely talented yet impoverished scribe Your Pal Fanton may have to close down his website or hie himself to a debtor's gaol with a red hot poker up his bumhole.

This is, by-and-large, a Very Bad Thing and cannot be tolerated.

So, if you are a fan of his Lordship: Go here, click on the Paypal button, and send him all your spare blunt.

It's either that, red hot poker time, or a spell down Portsmouth Docks with the "Get It Here" placard. Not pretty.

That is all.

Friday, September 04, 2009

On enjoying a day at the beach

On enjoying a day at the beach

"Wir wollen ein Boot mieten."

"Beg pardon?"

"We'd like to hire a boat, please."

"Then why didn't you say so? Six quid."

Six of the Queen's Pounds - quite reasonable for an hour's paddling about Weymouth Bay.

"Name and address, if you please."

"What," I ask, my whiskers bristling as the sun reflects off the blade of my freshly-drawn sabre, "What the Devil do you need that for?"

"Insurance, guv. Rules is rules - I turn me back for five seconds and you could paddle round the headland and WOOMPH! You'd 'ave it away."


"Yes, sir. Woomph."

I kindly point out that the craft in question wouldn't go woomph if it were powered by the bastard lovechild of Lance Armstrong and Steve Redgrave, but he is adamant.

But I care little for the stripe painted across his nose and the dandy highwayman attire - and I tell the scruff the big mistake he's making - so I reluctantly comply with his request.

"So," I ask apropos of nothing but to show that I am able to write and move my lips at the same time, "What do you do with these names and addresses?"

"Oh, nothing much guv. I just stick them in this 'ere folder."

"Ah yes," I observe, "The one marked PEDALO FILES in red chisel-tip marker."

"Then I give it to the police."

"I tell you what, my good man. I think I'll just hire a sun lounger."

Thursday, September 03, 2009

On Politics FACTS

On Politics FACTS

And you thought I was done with politics for one week. After the crushing defeat of the forces of sanity at the hands of the cold, dark heart of Dorset County Council, you might want to call this a touch of catharsis.

10. Conspiracy theorists in the United States are convinced that Barack Obama was born in Kenya, and therefore not entitled to stand for President. They are right, of course. Obama is a Zillon from the Planet Tharg, striving to bring humanity to its knees. Don't blame me, I voted for Kodos.

9. Italian PM Silvio Berlusconi, 72, denies that his attraction to young, flexible nymphettes has in any way devalued his premiership, pointing to a little known and recently added amendment to the Italian constitution allowing free beer, money and sex to all Prime Ministers once they reach the age of 72.

8. London mayor Boris Johnson has been embarrassed by the news that he was only second choice for the job behind "Queen of Mean" Anne Robinson. He will be further troubled by allegations that the Tories only turned to Robinson after a hat-stand with a blue rosette cited business interests for turning down the job.

7. Massive public disenchantment with politics has led to yet another shake-up of the electoral system. Instead of a General Election next June, Parliament will instead be chosen by a massive round of "Ip Dip Dog Shit".

6. Wonky-faced disgrace and comedy racist Nick Griffin only turned to extreme right-wing politics in order to fulfil his urgent psychological need to be near burly men with very short haircuts and leather boots. He's actually voted Lib Dem in the last couple of elections.

5. The green lines on the floor of the House of Commons are placed exactly two handbag swings apart to prevent MPs from assaulting each other. However, this did not stop Paymaster General Tessa Jowell entering the House with a six-foot bull-whip, for which Tory frontbencher William Hague was immensely grateful

4. In the recent Arkham By-Election, the All Hail Dark Lord Cthulhu Party romped home with a majority of over 300,000,000. However, their candidate was disqualified when rules regarding the raising of the dead were pointed out by election officials. The constituency will be represented by the Conservative Party's Dave Nyarlathotep, who follows many of the same policies

3. Known for his rapier-like wit, Prime Minister Winston Churchill once replied to Lady Astor's tart remark of "Winston, if I were your wife, I'd poison your coffee" with the now legendary "Fuck off, witches tits"

2. Thanks to a clerical error at the House of Commons Katie "Jordan" "Witches Tits" Price was officially Secretary of State for Wales for two weeks in 2007. In that period of time, the entire country disappeared up her clunge and hasn't been seen since. Price lays the blame entirely on former husband, Hoe Secretary* Peter Andre.

1. In 1979, when Margaret Thatcher came to power, there were between 3-4 million people unemployed. On leaving office, the official unemployment figure was 27. The same period marked a resurgence – through massive de-regulation – of the meat products export industry. A double win for The Iron Lady, I'm sure you'll agree

Bonus FACT: Prime Minister-in-waiting and man-of-the-people David Cameron is [genuinely] an Aston Villa fan. Other famous Villa fans include Nigel Kennedy, Gareth Gates, Ozzy Osbourne and Libyan hardman Mu'ammar Al-Qadaffi. Pattern emerging.

* A typo so excellent, I'm not going to fix it

Wednesday, September 02, 2009

On creationism

On creationism

PZ rides the dinoAs a deity-curious atheist*, I was delighted to see that one of my favourite bloggers - the esteemed PZ Myers - lead an expedition to that warehouse of lunacy that is America's Creation Museum, run by a bunch of fruitcakes known as Answers in Genesis.

Air fares being what they are, I gave the whole day's adventure a miss - although there is a similar Bastion of WRONG in Portsmouth - so I was unable to ride on a dinosaur, just like poor, dead Jesus did before he got eaten TO DETH by a pack of marauding Roman velociraptors.

Sadly, there are worrying numbers of folk who genuinely believe the Earth to be only 6,000 years old, and that every one of us is descended from the survivors of a planetary flood that took place at the height of a decidedly learned Egyptian civilisation which somehow neglected to record their survival from an apocalyptic flood by sitting on the top of their pyramids, or something.

Luckily, one of these asshats is no longer President of the United States. But as long as these shameless arses try to get such cobblers taught in schools, we must be prepared to counter them. Counter them with SCIENCE and ridicule.

As a man of SCIENCE, I am prepared to give the Answers in Genesis people a good look at their evidence, before dismissing them as a bunch of complete lunatics who think fossils are a superb piece of Slartibartfast-type sculpture from Jehovah's design team. That is the way of SCIENCE: evidence first, laugh at crackpots second.

So, after looking at evidence offered by SCIENCE (and man alive, there was LOADS), I did what the Creationists said and sat down and looked for the Answers. Answers in Genesis. Then, I wrote them a nice letter.

Dear Answers in Genesis

Congratulations on your doomed attempts at SCIENCE, viz: That whole creation of the universe in six days business.

In the name of balance and scientific enquiry (and eschewing the whole a-bloke-in-a-dress-said-it's-true school of thought that ended in the Spanish Inquisition), I was prepared to give you the benefit of the doubt, and subject your claims to the kind of rigour that real-life scientific theory has to survive in order to be deemed valid.

Therefore, against my better judgement, I followed your advice and sought out Answers in Genesis in the hope that some truth might be found. Excluding all other trains of thought, opening my mind, and letting nothing but Genesis flow in.

And to use a phrase which might be familiar to you: Christ on a bike, that was hard work.

I listened to Invisible Touch from beginning to end, and if you mean to tell me Phil Collins is the Second Coming, then you clearly are madder than I thought.

Get a grip.

Your pal

Albert O'Balsam
I await their reply, breath bated.

* You must have seen those adverts in the Sunday papers. "Gay? Bisexual? Curious?" It's much the same, only with the vengeful supernatural beings that live in your imagination

Tuesday, September 01, 2009

On anger management

On anger management

I've switched teh funnay off today, because something's got me angry.

This week, you see, Dorset County Council will meet and will – with the finality of officials that have already made up their minds – close down Weymouth Women's Refuge, amongst other vital projects.

It takes a lot to get me agreeing with my Labour MP, NuLab being the personification of EPIC FAIL these last few years, but if this is what our newly-elected Conservative county council's got planned for us, then may the deity of your choice help us all when smiling David Cameron walks through the door of Downing Street next June.

The long and the short of it - if you're still awake – is that Weymouth has the highest rates of domestic violence in the county, yet our refuge for some of the town's most at-risk families is to be replaced with what they euphemistically term 'outreach services'.

Women need a place to go when they are in immediate danger from an abusive partner. Children should not have to live in fear. Not being a woman myself, I should imagine the last thing I'd want is to have to make an appointment with an outreach worker at a critical moment. And not being one for hyperbole, the words "blood on their hands" already been used by others.

Let us, then, take a look at a few scenarios:

SCENARIO ONE: As seen by Dorset County Council

Scene: Living Room, interior, day. Mr and Mrs Normal are sitting in a sofa. Opposite, in a comfy chair is Ms Outreach-Worker. All have Stepford Wives-type grins on their faces.

Mr Normal: So, what you're saying is this – instead of resorting to my fists, we should sit down and talk things through like rational adults.

Ms Out-reach-Worker: Yes. Yes, that's it exactly.

Mr Normal: And, perhaps, I should lay off the drink and see to my anger issues as well?

Ms Outreach-Worker: Simples! Here, take this leaflet.

She hands Mr Normal a leaflet. The cover has a picture of a smiling nuclear family under the slogan "Dorset County Council Outreach Services – Happy Families AND Value For Money!"

Mr Normal: Tuh! How could I have been so stupid!

Mrs Normal: Hooray! Hooray for Dorset County Council!
SCENARIO TWO: Back in the real world

Scene: Living Room, interior, day. Mrs Normal cowers in a corner as Mr Normal enters.

Mr Normal: Been talking to Brian over the road...

Mrs Normal (under her breath): ...bloody busy-body...

Mr Normal: …says you've 'ad that council woman in again.

Mrs Normal (avoiding eye contact): I... I... sent her away again. Said we were fine. Said we'd sorted it

Mr Normal: Good. Good. What's that you're holding?

Mrs Normal: She left a leaflet. Thought you might like to read it. Sort your anger issues.

She holds up a leaflet. The cover has a picture of a smiling nuclear family under the slogan "Dorset County Council Outreach Services – Happy Families AND Value For Money!"

Mr Normal cracks his knuckles, and narrows his eyes.

Mrs Normal backs further into the corner.

Fade to black
The vote on this is tomorrow, and – to be honest – I'm not hopeful of the outcome.

An unstoppable bureaucracy in the hands of either "Compassionate" Conservatism or Calamitous New Labour. Stone me, never have I been so disillusioned by party politics.

The Dorset Echo reports.