Wednesday, 9 January 2013

The Instagram Restaurant



Beth and Ian were stale. These are grown adults by the way not pieces of bread, thought I'd clear that up. Anyway after what seemed many months of making do, budgeting their food and using that wheel thing they put on all the packaging at Sainsbury's. Beth came home to her husband who had lovingly prepared a meal of vegetable rice with a single chicken goujon and some Ritz crackers. He even took a picture of it. Bless. Needless for me to tell you Beth looked like she wanted the goujons to be multiple, some wine that's plentiful and her husband in a cardigan less dreadful.

She politely deposited both plates in the dog, dug out some cab fare, got herself changed and ironed Ian's one decent shirt.

Tonight, we dine in Instagram!” she bellowed, channelling her inner Gerard Butler.

A damp cab journey later, our intrepid heroes arrive at London's hippest new restaurant. A hostess greets them. Her name appears to be @cosykittenlover1992 (what were her parents thinking?).

Welcome to Instagram, how would you like your menus?
Beg your pardon?” Ian is bemused.
We offer a whole range of menus, in various fonts and borders.

Beth and Ian gave each other that look. The mutual look couples often make when faced with an annoying other couples or the distant sound of Justin Bieber.

Taking a random choice they are seated. Something seems off, it feels like a restaurant, gingham tablecloths, napkins and pictures of food on the walls. Lots of pictures of food on the walls. In fact almost nothing but pictures of food on the walls. People are wandering around their tables at leisure studying them.

Hash tag amazing salmon,” one side-parted, chino-clad cretin is overheard saying.
Totes,” his frail girlfriend replies, with glasses big enough for her face and his combined.

I think I've made a terrible mistake Ian.
Well we're here now come on, hopefully the food is good, it smells good,” Ian reassures.

Their waiter comes over dressed like an IT technician, smelling like a Dell motherboard. He tells them they can have whatever they like.

You can have whatever you like.

See? Told you.

Ian wants a steak, Beth wants Mushroom Stroganoff.
How would you like your steak?” says @jeffbetts88
Medium,” Ian replies.

The waiter giggles to himself, as if Ian has made a sly retro joke. “Come on, this is Instagram
what'll it be?

Ian looks lost, Beth is just as clueless but she sees he is incapable of making a choice “What would you recommend... @jeffbetts88?
OK erm, one Hudson and a Kelvin coming up.

They undergo their short wait for their meal and try to catch a glimpse of the meals of others. Cloches come out with regularity but they can never quite see what people are having. After what felt like a minute their cloches arrive via two beaming waiters named @enya4life and @mynameiskfbffj.

There underneath in glossy A4, was their dinner. Paper, flat as a pancake, except it's an inedible paper pancake. There's no calories, but no cutlery either. They look around, people with weird hair and funky jumpers are sniffing paper, admiring distressed borders. One particularly disturbed man in the corner is rubbing a picture of a jacket potato on his crotch. In Sutro format.

This is madness!” Beth cries.

A man bursts out from the printing kitchen, with a can of air freshener labelled 'gravy' “Madness?” (wait for it...)
This IS INSTAGRAM!” he had robbed her of her inner Gerard Butler.

Everybody stops, except the jacket potato man who is still rubbing away in a sweaty haze.
Ian leaps to the defence of his wife, defiant and realizing he's forgotten his wallet.

NO! This isn't Instagram, it's a pronto print for hipsters, disguised as some healthy eating fad.
Beth interjects, pointing at jacket potato man “Look at that man, look at him, is that what you people do here? Is that civilized? I bet you're all at it you hipster twats, waltzing around rubbing yourselves like it's some two-dimensional food orgy. Now I'm going home, my husband has cooked me a …... lovely meal, and I love him.

Hash tag boring,” is heard.

You need to pay,” orders @jeffbetts88

Ian, pay the man.

Fuck my life,” moans Ian.

You can FML all you like, but FYI this is a restaurant and you have received a service and you should pay for it.

I've left my wallet at home. What about an IOU?

"SMH," @jeffbetts88 shakes his head.

So am I paying for everything tonight?” asks Beth.

A hipster mutters “Do you mind, you're putting me off my risotto!

Piss off, it's paper.. you prick,” Beth replies.

A series of expletives and raised voices struggle to be heard amid the din; to the point where it's a more modern non-violent saloon brawl of words, paper cuts and hipster slap fighting. Nobody remembers why so Beth and Ian make an unnoticed exit.

Well it's good for the diet,” says a sheepish Ian.
I wonder if the dog could regurgitate that goujon.
Not sure what dog vomit is worth in Weight Watcher points.
Well it's better than paper,” Beth concludes.





Tuesday, 7 February 2012

Cheese Snaps FTW


Long ago, before the world turned to shit. We were happy folk, we didn't know it at the time, but we were. Well I was, who cares if you weren't. If you were eating Cheese Snaps like I was you were happy. Who would have thought in those carefree days that Cheese Snaps were a finite resource, like oil & Patrick Swayze? Their days were numbered and I didn't even know it. Why didn't you keep buying them? What's wrong with you lazy fucking Quaver munching plebs? Don't you realise Quavers are just shit Snaps?

'You can still get Tomato Snaps Phil chill ouuuuttt'

TOMATO!? PISS OFF!

YOU PEOPLE, honestly.....

Britain was a better place with them, no doubt. We had options then and now we are shadows of our former selves; turning on each other like savages. We need Snaps back, Cheese Snaps; proper Snaps. Spread them the world over bringing joy to people who need them, even if they don't like them make them smile at gunpoint, make them see how lucky they are; an extinct crisp brought to life that shits all over Quavers, a massive dense shit.

Recession? Do one. Global warming? Take a hike. Ninjas took away your socks and put silly string in your I-Phone? All things we face day in & day out, but there is a cure. Cheese Snaps; bring them back. It's the only chance we have.

Walker's were onto something good, then Gary Lineker stuck his beak in (clearly opposed to Cheese Snaps, I don't have concrete proof but that is fact) and such is his influence they pulled the plug. They might as well have pulled the plug on life itself. Too dramatic? No my friend, you just aren't seeing the bigger picture. Ashton Kutcher made a film once about butterflies and they had this effect like he went roller skating and because of that his Mum's ears fell off. Cheese Snaps existence had a vital impact on everything. Michael Bolton hasn't had a mullet for years, coincidence?! I think not...

Thursday, 19 January 2012

Baking Love

Two people stand at a bus stop. One is a cauliflower, the other is a block of cheese. They are people though, don't think of them any less because they are edible, so are we after all if you're that way inclined. Stop interrupting me I'm telling you a story.

So they are waiting for a bus in silence because they aren't of an age where strangers would talk, more part of the listen to your Ipod and don't make eye contact generation. Cheese eyes up Cauliflower from top to bottom 'lovely florets' it thinks to itself 'the things I'd do to that'.

Several minutes pass and the bus shows no signs of turning up and Cauliflower feels slightly uneasy with the amorous Cheese. It knows it shouldn't meddle with dairy; they're from different backgrounds and yet deep down it loves the attention. Cheese moves in for the kill. 'Excuse me, are you Cauliflower? I'm Cheese. Look I know I sound a bit forward but for some reason I'm really attracted to you, I just want to spread myself all over you and I dunno... melt'

Cauliflower can't believe what it has just heard, it's mind is blown. There it was waiting for a bus to town and now it's been propositioned with cooking. It's never cooked before, it's always been told the first time can be painful but Cheese is so alluring, it has swagger, it has it 'goin on' as a gangsta cucumber would say.

Cheese pleads 'Look I'm a big hunk of dairy, and you're the finest vegetable I've ever seen. Come back to mine so I can rip of them leaves and get at them storks'

Cauliflower blushes.. somehow and before they could think it through they were in Cheese's bedroom. Two strange contraptions lay on the floor one a large Rangemaster oven and another smaller device. 'Oh my a Rangemaster!' Cauliflower gushes. 'Oh yeah, I work in the city' brags Cheese.

Cheese moves himself towards the smaller device; a fondue maker and switches it on. A dull whirring sound fills the room. 'Cauliflower I want you to strip'

'What is this?'
'Foreplay baby, do a sexy dance for me while I have a dip.'

Soft saxophone music plays in the background as the vegetable moves awkwardly, the odd leaf peeling away in rhythm while Cheese dips a corner in the fondue, melts a bit off and flicks it at Cauliflower. It's a wonderful sensation for the timid flora, feeling the goop graze her florets. 'Let's take this to the oven Cheese! I want you!'

Cheese is disappointed to cut off the foreplay but concedes the time is now. They climb aboard and the fan kicks in. 'Why isn't it hot yet?' says Cauliflower.

'It has to warm up first, I was going to pre-heat it but you rushed me.'
'Sorry I'm not sure if I'm feeling it now I think the moment has passed.' 
'No no, please I'll have it going in a couple of minutes, let's talk dirty or something.'
'I don't think this is a good idea. I don't even know you Cheese'
'Hey, I'm a very mature cheese and we're gonna bake love whether you like it or not.'

Cauliflower mulls over what to do, while slowly the temperature increases, maybe when it heats up proper it'll be back in the mood. It is a Rangemaster oven and Cheese is very mature; potent even. The fan noise grows louder and it turns to face Cheese, this is the moment they will combine, a food fusion it'll cherish forever. Cheese leans in but an expression of panic strikes as it struggles for grip, dripping through the grill and collapsing fast. 'Quick, kiss me Cauliflower! Let me cover you in my yellowy goop!' Cauliflower freezes (not literally, it is a fan-assisted oven) and Cheese wails as it slips all the way through the grill finally collecting itself again at the bottom of the oven, crisping by the second. Cauliflower screams in disgust trying to exit the oven but trapped going brown on top 'My florets my beautiful florets! What's happening?'

Cheese sobs 'I'm sorry this normally never happens, honest. Please don't tell anyone, I have a reputation.'

Sufficiently burned solid again, Cheese gets them out of the oven. Charred and disappointed they part ways. Cauliflower does not leave a number and goes about the rest of it's day, re-attaching leaves for modesty and to cover it's scars. Cheese is ruined, a successful city trader faced with major surgery to restore its smooth surfaces and calcium structure. The oven was too much for them and it was nearly the end of them.




















Thursday, 25 August 2011

Pitches to Kevin Bacon


This summer Kevin Bacon stars in.............


Rash Decision!

Kevin Bacon plays a tough grizzled cop who never plays by the rules. Always on the edge Bacon loses his cool with the boss and gets chucked out of the force. Wandering the streets waving his cock around he takes up prostitution and struggles through a career threatening thrush injury. He arrests himself in an act so noble he is restored to his old homicide job.

Or.....

Smoked!

Kevin Bacon plays a book shop owner whose whole life is about to go up in smoke! Not entirely sure why yet but when all hope is lost he begins a new life as a drug mule! He saves enough money to reopen his book shop and also makes some friends along the way...

Or....

Bringing Home The Bacon!

Kevin Bacon is about to get the surprise of his life when after a drunken binge he puts himself up for adoption! An elderly couple take him in and MADNESS ensues! After a hard fought legal battle (defense lawyer to be played by either Matthew Mconagoniclelyahey or the other one from Two and a Half Men) Bacon reluctantly returns home to his actual parents although continues his sordid affair with his adopted mother.

Or...........

Footlost!

Kevin Bacon plays a friendly actor/vet who's about to break more than a leg! After a vicious accident involving some chloroform and a stern giraffe called Lewis our hero is forced to spend his life footless and convicted of minor beastiality. Undeterred Bacon; purely through montage is able to grow his own feet back with the help of a radical scientist played by Judge Reinhold and rebuilds his shattered reputation.

Or........

Usain!

Kevin Bacon breaks new artistic ground playing the enigmatic world's fastest man Usain Bolt. (DEFINITE OSCAR MATERIAL)

Or..........

The Vegan!

Kevin Bacon is The Vegan! A renegade doctor who lives by a strong code of ethics is forced to go to extremes when stranded in a nature reserve. After days of refusal to eat animals to survive Kevin Bacon decides to eat himself. As much effort as possible must be made to make it look authentic and no CGI must be used or stunt doubles. (EVEN MORE SURE OF AN OSCAR!)

Tuesday, 26 July 2011

The New Sofa

Charcoal grey it looms, like an appropriate dark cloud over my youth. A blessed time of late night Football Manager sessions and laughing in the face of dinner by eating a packet of biscuits instead. Heady times they were.

My quarter-life crisis has rumbled for several years now; a slow transition, which has been met with firm resistance until recently. Small events were conspiring to lure me in. Many friends and work colleagues are marrying and bearing children, I am frequently asked when it's my turn as though I have a calender with a fat X on it I can show them: 'Here it is, right there, just turn up for the reception and buy us an electric whisk from John Lewis'

I have a strong bond now with my potential future Mother-in-law; I have broody moments around kids, imagining what my childs fat little hands would feel like to hold and picking them up from school muddy-kneed and bundling them into a Citroen Picasso to take them to Pizza Hut 'Thanks Dad, you're the best!'

These were perfectly innocuous though, merely idle flirtations with responsible adult life. Recently though my girlfriend asked me a question that shook me to my core: 'I want a new sofa, can we get one?'

I went on the defensive the only way a frightened man can 'What's wrong with the one we've got?' and 'All that money for something to sit on' then finally 'But I need a new laptop!' I was well beaten. In grown up Top Trumps furniture beats technology hands down, technology is a man's folly destined to live in spare rooms or opaque varnished cabinets. You are requested to build these cabinets, masking your once proud surround system and your sleek games console. Your film collection diluted with 3/4 of Jennifer Aniston and Kate Hudson.

When the sofa debate was over, I knew... Shit just got real. The Argos sale booklet constantly wafted around, on sale for a week, just a few days left, now two days left, Phil it's the last day of the sale I WANT THAT SOFA PHIL SUBMIT TO ME, YOU ARE MINE NOW BUILD ME A VARNISHED CABINET AND HIDE YOUR MOST VALUED POSSESSIONS IN IT MWAHAHAHA.

Yes dear. I wilted.

On Friday the new sofa will be delivered. It was a good price. The fact that I recognise the value and worth of said sofa illustrates the battle has been lost, if ever there was one. It will be a new chapter, relatives will ask about it as though it were a new addition to the family. We will teach it to walk and we will get up in the early hours to rub it's cushions till it burps. Maybe one of our names will be it's first word.

I'm sure I will grow to love it, maybe even find loose change down it. Furniture now will have value, it is an investment in a large expensive inaminate object with a woman. In some ways it is a bigger step than marriage or kids, the sofa cannot be separated or shared in custody (actually it can as it comes in two corner sections) and will require paying off over time. It is the sofa that binds us now; a cushioned, cornered cuff to my wrist and a reminder two years into my relationship that the clock is very much ticking.
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Tuesday, 15 February 2011

Cooking in the name of

Coca-Gammon with smashed potatoes

Ingredients

1 or 1.5kg- of Gammon unsmoked

1 White onion

2l Coca-Cola (No value or diet nonsense)

Golden Syrup

New potatoes

Garlic

Chicken stock

'erbs

Milk

Butter


Right to start wop out your gammon and plonk it in the biggest pan you've got, position it so that the skin is face down. Take your onion and chop it in half, bung that in the pan too. Take your bottle of coke and empty it into the pan. You don't have to use the whole bottle so save yourself enough for a glass as your own tasty beverage. Please, I insist. Get that to boiling point then cover that shit up, let it bubble away nicely and leave it alone for about an hour and 3/4. If it's a bigger joint then add an hour for each kilo you cook.

Take your Garlic and pick off 6 cloves, peel and chop them in half. Leave to one side. Take your spuds and use enough as if you were just cooking mash. DO NOT PEEL THEM! Just cut them in half if they're a bit hench. Put that all in a pan but leave it alone for now because your gammon's got ages left to cook. You've now got the next hour to yourself at least so put your feet up. You've got Grand Designs Sky +ed go watch that.

That house turned out well didn't it? Especially after they went over budget and fell out with the builders. Anyways back to dinner, stick a big fork in your gammon. Piping? Drain that bad boy and plonk it on a chopping board, you can save the stock if you want to, don't know what you'd do with it though. Get your spuds and garlic going, for about 15-20 mins you'll know when they're done when they slide off the fork when you prod them.

But going back a bit while they were boiling your joint of gammon was sitting there all lonely. Preheat your oven to full whack, whatever gas mark that is and get two big dollops of golden syrup and start lubing up your pork. Haha.

Now you have your glazing, you can use black treacle and cloves instead if you want to be posh. But golden syrup was the best thing I had to hand and it turned out well for me. Stick the kettle on.

Drain the spuds and garlic when done and your gammon should be in the oven by now in a foil lined tray; I don't have to tell you that. Just take it out in about 10 mins. Back to your spuds, keep it all in the pan and PUT THE MASHER DOWN! Sorry I just knew what you were about to do. Take a wooden spoon and with the back side of it give each little spud a punch in the face so they break apart slightly, then put a chicken stock cube in a jug and pour your boiled water to make a little stock but not much pour a squidge into the pan with a couple of tablespoons of butter and start mixing it gently, then add another squidge of milk just to moisten it up further enough so it gets soaked up. Spray some herbs over it and remove your gammon from the oven. Carve, serve, enjoy do some peas and a fried egg if want some more on your plate or if you're feeling classy garnish with some pithy salad instead.

I meant to take a picture of mine but I forgot. Sorry. But please try it though and tell me what you thought! If you don't like it blame Nigella Lawson.

Friday, 28 January 2011

First day at Lynx HQ

Mr Lynx: OK people Lynx Thrust is ready for launch, we need an ad pronto. Any Ideas?

Ad exec 1: What about a guy sprays himself with Lynx, he's at a bus stop and there's an old lady there, the bus is on the horizon and as he turns back to the old lady, she's got her legs spread open. So he just drills her. Misses the bus. Then it says Lynx Thrust, fuck the bus.

Mr Lynx: Good but no because he's not fucking the bus, if you could rework it so he fucks the bus, maybe put some tits on it. NEXT!?

Ad exec 2: How about a guy sprays himself with lynx so hard it burns his dick off, 'cos it's so potent and he's got a hot date and he's at the part where he's got to have sex and he looks nervous but when he looks down, he's now got a can of Lynx as his dick and he drills her with it. Then you get sperm coming out of the nozzle and it ends.

Mr Lynx: Hrmmm like it but it's a deodorant pulling machine not a sex appendage. Maybe if you showed him sewing it on or getting it surgically attached it'd be believable.

Ad exec 3: How about a man is having a massive shit, a proper double flusher and it smells bad so he sprays the Lynx to get rid of the smell and then suddenly the shit re-animates and rises out of the bog with a bikini on. Then he erm..

Mr Lynx: Drills it?

Ad exec 3: Yeah.

Mr Lynx: Your fired. What about you over there new guy, the hairy one.

Ad exec 4: I've got an idea, there's a footballer wearing lynx and he's running past this lineswoman and she puts her flag up, then all his teammates are complaining it's never offside etc. Then you see the footballer and he's got his flag up if you know what I mean and he says 'do me a favour love' and he drills her by the corner flag.

Mr Lynx: Excellent work Richard, just the right level of innuendo, sexism and lack of plausibility we need. Good work Keys I see a bright future for you here.