Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Seems Legit Spam Email of the Year

I get email. 

And what an email it is.

Click to embiggen

And here it is in full:

Attention: Dear Customer,

We need to confirm that this is Truth Before the bank will Release Your Funds to one Jennifer Scott. This Office was contacted by one Jennifer Scott, From Canada Who Claim to be Your Partner she Promise to finalize everything regarding your Claim as Your Next Of Kin. she said that you were Involved In A car Accident Last  year December 20014 and Die without providing a death certificate. 

We need to confirm that you are truly dead before we can Release the Fund to her. We Believed That You are Dead But As a Federal Office We need a Proof for Record Purposes Before We Can Release the Funds To her Therefore, Your Silent is a Clear Proof That you Are Dead. Note we will commence On the Release of your Funds To your Next Of Kin from next week if we do not hear from you, May your Soul Rest in Perfect Peace Amen. 

Mr.Paul Walter
Director Debt reconciliation Department 

I know what you're thinking: "Poor, dead Alistair, he was aces."

But here's the rub, I'M NOT DEAD.

Luckily, my pals at Google Mail have come up with a warning just in case I am irredeemably stupid:

Be careful with this message. Similar messages have been used to steal people's personal information. Unless you trust the sender, don't click on links or reply with personal information 

Now, we're all sensible people who don't fall for scams, so if you'll be so kind to all send me £400 to prove you are not dead, let us go our separate ways.

Monday, December 28, 2015

Superman may be a dick, but he's surrounded by bigger dicks

I have written at length on how Superman, The Man of Steel, is a complete dick. While this opinion has not changed, it's worth pointing out he's probably a dick because he is surrounded by bigger dicks.

Lois Lane, for example.

"Herp. Derp."
Ms Lane is an award-winning journalist, and we are frequently told that she is the best reporter at the Daily Planet.

Why then - I ask - does she constantly fail to notice that her closest colleague Clark Kent is just Superman with a pair of glasses and a shapeless suit?

It's not as if she knows that many six-foot-four man-mountains with a barrel chest and an ability not to feel pain, even when run over by a truck right outside their offices. There is one simple reason for this: Lois Lane is a dick.

Having said that, I know some perfectly good journalists who couldn't find their own arse with both hands tied behind their backs. Ms Lane joins this proud tradition. But she's not alone at the Daily Planet ast being a complete dick.

Take cub photographer Jimmy Olsen.

"Derp. Herp."
He's a photographer. He's Superman's preferred photographer. He takes loads of pictures of Superman. Which he then hands to Clark Kent. You would have thought he would have noticed.

But there's a reason for that. Cub photographer Jimmy Olsen is a dick.

And so is Daily Planet editor Perry White. And everybody who works at the Daily Planet. Dicks, the lot of them.

So easily fooled is award-winning journalist Lois Lane with the old glasses on/off trick that she is perpetually puzzled by The Man of Steel's pets.

"Hey Clark -- When did you get a second cat?"
She also thinks he's got two rabbits.

"Hey Clark -- I didn't know you had two of these fellas"
It's not as if the citizens of any other major American city fail to recognise a superhero hiding in plain sight, right?

"Hey, Bruce Wayne, you'll never guess who was here a minute ago. Batman!"
People of Gotham: You're all dicks. You deserve the Joker.

Monday, December 21, 2015

Star Wars: The problem with the Imperial Empire (Spoiler Free)

Death Stars: Always the shit alternative
I've just been to see the new Star Wars film, and I'm pretty sure that I'm not going to spoil the movie for anyone who hasn't seen it yet when I say that the Imperial Empire (or whatever name it's going under now) pretty much continue where they left off - being run by a crowd of complete and utter shitwits.

That's why I feel sorry for your average stormtrooper, who have no say in the fact that they are - once again - heading off toward certain painful death just because Darth Whoever's-In-Charge-This-Week has got a twinge in his knee from The Dark Side that tells him to go an build another fucking Death Star.

And that's where the Empire falls over time and time again. The people at the top are maniacs with absolutely no idea how to run an enormous sprawling organisation with a limitless military-industrial complex that that turn its evil robot hand to all sorts of killing machine.

Finn: Double-ended [CENSORED]
 So, what do they do with this limitless military-industrial complex? They build another Doomsday Machine. And as we already know, Doomsday Machines always come with one fatal flaw that allows a man in a dressing gown to turn off the tractor beams; or a recently radicalised farmboy to fly a missile straight up your exhaust port; or the toilet cleaner to [CENSORED] [CENSORED] [CENSORED] with his double-ended [CENSORED].

I bet even Mr Stevens (head of Death Star catering) had the secret access codes to the shields and tractor beams so he could dispose of unwanted Penne Arabiatta without clogging up the Doomsday Machine's firing mechinism. Frankly, Imperial Empire management is a complete clusterfuck.

"Oh sweet Jesus, not another fucking Death Star"
Now, I for one am pretty sick of the Empire losing all the time, simply because the Emperor is huge on genocide rather than - say - consolidating his rule through well-organised military strength rather that this "Let us destroy the Rebel scum in a single blow" business, which - message for you - DOESN'T EVER WORK.

You've got (and I have to keep saying this) a limitless military-industrial complex. Build more star destroyers. Design an alternative to the TIE Fighter, which has now been in service for around 40 years despite the pilots not being able to see out the sides. And for the love of Yoda, organise some marksmanship classes - it's pitiful watching those wall-eyed morons trying to hit a target.

That's why I'm offering my services to the Empire to improve staff morale (no more wet trays in the canteen, lads!) and to - perhaps gift them a victory that could see them on the better things.

We're going to need a ways-of-working committee, focus groups, a 360-degree appraisal system, a large team of external consultants who seemingly do nothing but order pizza from the Domino's over the road, and no fucking Death Stars.

"I said no fucking Death Stars, and you got me a Death Star. How many of you do I have to kill?"
We'll up building capacity at the ship yards by a hundred fold, just by shifting the Death Star slave labour onto something that won't explode the minute try the 'ON' button.

Evil doesn't have to be grand gesture stuff. Look at Kim Jong-un. He says he's got an H-Bomb, when he still has biplanes. You can do the same, only with a limitless military-industrial complex that churns out Star Destroyers. Just stop being a dick all the time.

All I ask in return is the head of Jar Jar Binks, which will make a lot of future Imperial Empire citizens very, very happy.

Friday, December 18, 2015

The Year in Angry Local Newspaper Photographs

What the Hell are you doing here when you could be looking at my Buzzfeed list of the year's best Angry People photographs?

See Potato on a stick man!

A geezer dressed as a zebra crossing!

Nick Clegg!

A man on the toilet (not Nick Clegg)!

Do it. Do it NOW.

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

World Leader Fish-Nudger of the Year Poll 2015

This is important.

Which of these world leaders is the best at looking at fish?

1. Vladimir Putin. Style, poise, and naked aggression. You can bet your bottom dollar that he punched that fish to death himself, and he's going to take it home and eat it raw, bones and everything.

2. Barack Obama. The epitome of cool in any situation. While he did not punch these fish to death with his own hand, he knows a secret service man who will do the job as good as any Russian president whose name we don't mention hem hem.

3. David Cameron. Needs his wife at his side to help him point at the correct species. Has the same barber as candidate 4. Due to a clerical error, once appointed a fish as Secretary for Education for three months, but nobody noticed.

4. Kim Jong-un. This is his fourth official visit to a fish farm in as many weeks, and he has been practicing his fish-looking skills fiercely for this vote. Will the steely glance at the deceased catfish along with the pocket billiards through the coat pockets be enough for the East Asian hard man?

Vote vote VOTE!

Who is the best at looking at fish?

Vladimir Putin
Barack Obama
David Cameron
Kim Jong-un
Some other leader in a fish-based economy
Poll Maker

Tuesday, December 15, 2015


Space Hitler: Cockwomble
Tim Peake has been launched into space, yet still they can't sort out the traffic lights on my way to work. But here's some TIM PEAKE SPACE FACTS.

Tim Peake is on a secret mission to end the threat of Space Hitler for once and for all.

Tim Peake's biggest problem as the only British person on the ISS will be having to think up variations on the words "Thank you" when the same person keeps holding an airlock open for him.

Peake's greatest worry is that he might have to post a middling review about the ISS on Tripadvisor because there's nobody to fold the toilet paper into a little point

A Soho cafe is sending the first Hipster astronaut into the heart of the sun tomorrow. He wants to get there before it gets cool

One giant leap for a pig's bladder full of wind
Tim Peake's secondary mission is to retrieve Chris Waddle's Italia 90 semi-final penalty, now in its 25th year in orbit

British boffins are already working on daily supply missions of fresh tea and Full English Breakfast for Peake, at a cost to the British taxpayer of £30m per day.

"I can't believe I've got to clear up after these jerks"
One of Major Tim's first actions aboard the International Space Station is to be photographed for his local newspaper, pointing forlornly at a floating dog turd because his predecessor couldn't be arsed to tidy up after the ISS space dogs.

Peake's Soyuz capsule took longer than expected to reach the ISS as he insisted on stopping along the way at a Spar market to get biscuits.

Tim Peake's Christmas gift to his fellow astronauts on the ISS: Two sopping wet Christmas hams each. Unwrapped. $20 value. Limited supply. (Sponsored FACT by Dmitri's New York Ham Emporium - Two guaranteed sopping wet hams for $20)

Wednesday, December 09, 2015

Smug Alert: Those #TrumpFacts gags that will almost certainly get me killed

So, maniac billionaire and frightening US presidential candidate Donald Trump has been going around saying that Britain has become so radicalised that some parts of the country are now police no-go areas.

This must be true, because it's come straight from the mouth of the Donald and it's on the internet and everything. Luckily, so are many other Trump Facts, all of which are just as true. Mine [SMUG ALERT] seem to be quite popular and have turned up on various listicles and cetera:

This one was actually cheggered* from Colonel Gaddafi, and he wasn't even joking.

Possibly not a Coleman original either. I'm such a cheggerer*.

I used to sell Arsenal fanzines outside Finsbury Park mosque as it was on a direct line between the station and the football ground, so this one is absolutely not a victim of cheggerism*.

All I have to fear now is the unlikely event of Daonald Trump becoming the leader of the formerly free world and my being carted off to the salt mines for the not unreasonable crime of being on his shit list.



* Chegger (verb) To steal a joke from another person and pass it off as your own. ("You totally cheggered that gag from Ricky Gervais. Have you no shame?")

Tuesday, December 08, 2015

In which I suggest an honour for world statesman Recep Tayip Erdogan

Erdogan: Deserving of a singular honour

I do my best not to dine out on the fact that I once did the biggest poo of my life mere minutes before meeting Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, my face wearing a look of abject relief and "You don't know what I know" as I pressed the flesh.

It's just a shame that the memory of my greatest personal triumph is somewhat shaded by the fact that Mr Erdogan has turned out to be - well - a bit of a turd.

From duplicitous dealings on the world and regional stage to enacting a law that makes criticism of the president illegal - leading to the harassment and arrest of Turkish journalists who now find it impossible to hold government to account without being accused of treason, he's not in my best books. And that's a shame, because it was a truly marvellous poo.

However, there is one way to rescue the situation, because it has come to my attention that there is no unit to measure the standard amount of faeces coming from the average adult human's bottom. There is a gap in medical science here that desperately needs to be filled.

Yes, we have good old pounds and ounces (the average is 4.5 oz, or 128 grams) and feet and inches (12.5 inches, or 31cm), but no single combined measure for human faeces that can be marked up on a patient's chart to determine if there might be something lodged up there that might need to be worked out with a stick.

That is, until now.

I'll be sending in an urgent application to ISO - the International Standards Organisation- to have this unit named the Erdogan. It is, I feel the very least the man deserves.

But let's be respectful. The Erdogan should not be used in a mocking manner or as a slang word ("Don't go in the end cubicle for a while - I just shat out a whole Erdogan"); but as a straight scientific term by the medical profession ("The patient passed 0.8 Erdogans of firm consistency equivalent to 4 on the Bristol Scale"). This distinction should be backed up with violence if necessary, because he is a world statesman and not a figure of fun.

Watt. Tesla. Newton. Now Erdogan. Names living on in history as scientific measures. What an honour.

Erdogan supporters: Please do not kill me.

I am not mad.

Friday, December 04, 2015

Why Superman is a dick. And Batman as well, come to mention it.

Jane has a controversial opinion when it comes to the world's favourite superhero, and it is this: Superman is a dick. I thoroughly agree, and would go further: Superman is a gold-plated tub-thumping bell-end.

Why all this hate for the Man of Steel, you ask. You know he's an orphan, light years away from his home on the planet Krypton - why do you want to make him sad? And it's because of this: Superman is a dick.

Here's why he's a dick: He's got amazing powers that outstrip any force on this planet, yet he chooses only to solve one very minor problem at a time. Somebody getting mugged in a Metropolis alleyway? No problem, cape-boy is there sorting out the small-time crook. Lorry hanging over the edge of a bridge? The driver is whisked to safety, and the cargo of puppies is delivered to the fur coat factory. What a man. What a dick.

How about world hunger, Superman? You could use your superpowers to irrigate all the desert regions of the world and plant sustainable crops that could save the lives of billions. Not a fucking peep.

World peace? Yeah, you flew all the nuclear weapons into the heart of the sun, and see what low-budget chaos your actions brought to thestreets of Milton Keynes, you dick. How about Islamic State? How about North Korea, Assad, Eritrea, Boko Haram? Get down there, punch a few faces until they cry uncle. But you won't, because you're a dick.

Even Lex Luthor thinks you're a dick, and he's a dick
I mean – you proved you could wind back time and change history. So what did you do? You used it to save your girlfriend. Nobody else. Just Lois Lane. The prize-winning journalist who is so unobservant you could put a pair of glasses on her dog, and she'd think it was a different dog.

Why didn't you wind back time a little further and punch Lex Luthor in the cock to stop him setting off that nuke in the first place? Why don't you go back further and fuck up Hitler?

You won't, because you're a dick.

And as for Batman: "Hmm, I'd like to do something good for Gotham with all my billions. I know – I'll dress up as a bat." You DICK.

Dick (left) and dick (right)

Tuesday, December 01, 2015

Christmas is coming, so let's take a look at this year's Advent Calendar

It's the first day of December, the beginning of Advent, which means it's time to open the first window on the old Advent Calendar.

We're nice sorts, so I've bought mine from a charity organisation that's caught my eye recently. It's ace, and it goes to prove that this is going to be the best Christmas Walford's ever seen.

Two for a quid in Poundland. BARGAIN.
Save the Rabid Weasels - a group dedicated to removing the stigma of rabies from this angriest of mammals, and help them re-integrate into society in the hope that they'll be accepted for the frothing, biting and frankly deadly creatures that they undoubtedly are. For are we not all - deep down - rabid weasels ourselves?

And let's see what's behind today's window:


I shall call him George and I shall hug him and pet him and kiss him and... AAAAAAARGH MY FACE IT'S GOT MY FACE AAAAARGH

I'm beginning to regret my purchase already, to be perfectly honest.

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Introducing the "Acme" Dog Spigot

Have a dog? Struggle with grooming and access during routine dog inspections? The you need the "Acme" Dog Spigot.

Features include:

* 360-degree rotation in all axes for thorough inspection and grooming

* Motorised version to allow all-round exhibition at dog shows, in your front window etc

* Fully lubricated bum spike

* Meat-flavoured nose-clamp

* Sturdy construction, but packs flat to suit any household

* Cow version available for safe grooming and inspection of cows and other bovine-style fauna

* Allow 28 days for delivery

* £250, comes with a free inflatable Barbara Woodhouse with functioning orifices

* Strictly no refunds

I am not mad.

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Another stupid Facebook fridge magnet, and a question

You've all seen these things bobbing around on your Facebook timeline. And we all know they're crap with their hokey sayings, awful poetry and pictures of minions. But I've got one question regarding this one:

Has anybody on this Earth who has advocated dancing in the rain actually ever tried dancing in the rain?

Dancing in the rain is cold and miserable, and once the wet stuff starts seeping down your neck, all you want to do is find that person who suggested that you should try dancing in the rain, and smash them over the head with your best dancing shoes.

Also, people will see you dad dancing and may probably call the police because only weird people dance in the rain that badly, and you're probably out to do something unspeakable to their kiddiewinks. You'll end up in a cell for the night, cold, wet and shivering, and accepting a police caution on account of your bad dancing disturbing the peace.

Dancing in the rain: Don't try it.

And it's "TOO short", you cretins.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Not getting beaten up by the police in Tunis: A 10th anniversary special

"Run away!"
In the aftermath of this week's Parisian horror, the BBC News Magazine section asks What should you do in an attack? One of the options that people should consider, it says, is to run away - advice which has been met with mockery in some parts.

Those who laugh at this advice are very wrong, for running away from trouble in the face of heavily-armed goons has saved my bacon on at least one occasion. In fact, tomorrow marks the tenth anniversary of my not getting beaten up by heavily-armed goons in Tunisia, who were at one stage charging straight for your humble author armed with big sticks and steel toe-capped boots.

When faced with hairy-arsed Tunisian police charging straight at you armed with big sticks and steel toe-capped boots, damn right I'm going to run away and not stick around to help them with their enquiries. And so should you.

So, here's what happened in Tunisia, and let this be a lesson in the art of surviving through cowardice to you all:

"Bollocks to this, I'm off"
My employers thought it would be a good idea to send me to a United Nations conference in Tunisia on the grounds that many important things might be happening there. I was enthused by the fact I might be in the same room as Colonel Qadaffi and Robert Mugabe, but in the end the not-lamented Colonel threw a hissy fit and decided to go home.

Tunisia, at the time, was under the cosh of a what one might call a government quite used to dealing very firmly with dissent. Though welcoming to tourists and their money, they weren't particularly open to such wacky ideas as "freedom of expression" and "democracy". So - of course - that made it the ideal place to hold a UN Conference on freedom of expression and democracy.

Some Tunisian freedom groups, fresh from having their heads stoved in by government heavies, decided it would be an ideal time to stage a demonstration asking if they could - if the President didn't mind - have a little bit of freedom and democracy to speak their minds regarding being oppressed and beaten up by government heavies all the time. The world's press, bored out of their skulls from being stuck in a press centre for three days with all the best world leaders failing to show up, thought they might like to get out, stretch their legs, and go and take a look at Tunisian street politics in action. Idiots.

This is what a typical conference media centre looks like. No wonder people try to escape
So, a fleet of taxis left the conference centre and headed to downtown Tunis where the demo was to take place. We disembarked to see a small crowd of demonstrators facing off with a larger mob of heavily-armed government heavies, all in riot gear. Before long, the heavily-armed government heavies in riot gear started hitting people over the head with their big sticks. When people fell over after being hit over the head with big sticks, the heavily-armed government heavies in riot gear then kicked them very hard with their steel-capped boots. Very effective tactics, not lost on the watching press upon whom the heavily-armed government heavies in riot gear then turned their attention.

I had recently been on the corporate Hazardous Environments Course - after which I had been presented with a nice certificate which said I knew what to do in a hazardous environment - and recognised that this could possibly be a hazardous environment. Remembering my classics (The Tale of Sir Robin in Money Python and the Holy Grail), I knew exactly what to do in the circumstances.


"Where to, bud?"

As heavily-armed government heavies in riot gear bore down on us, the taxi driver also knew exactly what to do, and floored it.

Time was a blur, but I was back at the conference centre within 20 minutes of leaving, clutching my precious taxi receipt. Over the next couple of hours, my colleagues in the world's Fourth Estate arrived back in various shades of agony, nursing bleeding heads and bruised limbs, our generous hosts having taught them a lesson in local values. The Discipline of the Baseball Bat, as scholars of Irvine Welsh might say.

The following morning's press briefing was a tense affair. Journalists, as a rule, don't like being in pain, especially at the hands of their otherwise generous hosts who had thoughtfully provided free air conditioning and a wireless network that was clearly being monitored by state goons. The puffy-faced minder sent to look after us was given both barrels, especially when it emerged that all the remaining seminars, meetings and press conferences on press freedom had somehow been double-booked and were now cancelled. And Qadaffi had cried off too, suddenly remembering as he crossed the border that he hated Tunisia and everybody in it.

To make matters worse, the man from the official state news agency, immediately recognisable in a cheap jacket stained with sweat (possibly not his own) with the word "PRESS" written across the shoulders - whose role up until then had been to wander round the press centre making sure nobody wrote anything that criticised our generous hosts - had tried to circulate an open letter for us all to sign. 

Imagine this, on a nylon suit jacket several times too small, worn by a sweaty man with a walrus moustache, clearly used to expenses-paid lunches

It declared "We, the undersigned, thank our generous Tunisian hosts for their wonderful hospitality, and I am completely uninjured". That went down like a cup of cold sick, as you can imagine, and as signing it seemed to be compulsory, most of the names appeared to be fictional. James Bond had signed it three times, all in different hands.

You could tell where Sweaty Ali (for that was his nickname) was in the room by the cries of "Look, just fuck off, will you?" I signed it "Lunchtime O'Booze of The Daily Gnome" just to make him go away, and he seemed well pleased. Luckily, it was the last day of the event, and we were able to retire to our luxurious beach-front hotels to write up the copy we would file just as soon as we left the country. And to get drunk, as well.

And if you think those were trying circumstances, the worst battle was yet to come. My editor turned down my expenses claim on the grounds that a phone call I had made back to base to say that I was alive could not be itemised. 

It's a hard life in the press. That's why I prefer to drive a desk.

Monday, November 16, 2015

The most hateful phrase in the English language

What's the most hateful phrase in the English language? I've had a long, hard think about this while on hold to an insurance company ("Your call is important to us, that's my we've failed to employ enough telephone operators"), but there are more hateful phrases than mere hold music platitudes,

For example:

"For your convenience..." --- Something that is supposedly done to help you, but is patently not.
For example: "For your convenience, all drinks at this bar are priced at £5"

"A replacement bus service is available"
Translation: "It's the weekend, the roads are rammed, and you thought you might like to travel by train. Think again sucker."

Or perhaps it's a portmanteau:

"For your convenience, a replacement bus service is available."

That's the bastard. And wait, there's another one:

"In order to improve customer service, we have found it necessary to..."


Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Guilty pleasures: Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall

Call that a knife? THIS is a knife
I quite like Camilla, even though she's a living symbol of the landed gentry prolonging the hereditary system that places one person above another simply due to an accident of birth.

This is simply because of the number of fucks she gives: No fucks at all.

Lick me.
See this? Guess where it's going later.
Zero fucks. Duchess Camilla, we salute you.

Her husband, on the other hand...

...up to no good. Always.

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Depressing Poetry Corner: U OK hun xx

Well, hark at me taking the piss out of other people's crappy poetry.

I sat in the car on Monday lunchtime and wrote this. And if you can't get a poem out of your head and onto paper in five minutes, you're doing it wrong.

It's called "U OK hun xx" and it's about the inevitability of time's march. Everybody who writes poems gets to this one sooner or later.

U OK hun xx

The days fall away like leaves
Because you can't stop the clock,
And every morning there's a pain
But it's only inside your head
Because you have nothing to do that's worth your while
So you sleep and sleep and sleep and sleep.
And then you wake up
And tomorrow you wake up
And the day after you wake up
And then one day
You don't wake up.
And that gives you something to look forward to, I suppose.
Somebody asks: U OK hun xx

I've done a version with a Minion, just in case you want to put it on Facebook to depress your friends. Minions are mandatory on Facebook, I gather.

I'm OK hun xx