Wednesday, 29 October 2008

Bugger and Balls

I just turned on my TV, oh it's on 4music, what's this a show called freshly squeezed? I think it's time to rename the blog.

Any name suggestions are welcome....

So good news, my Mum is now settled in Malta and also harassing me on Facebook. Only kidding, I actually do miss her, she's the only other person I know who likes tennis.

I'm becoming increasingly concerned about an oncoming bout of writer's block. I can feel it seeping in, a lethargic attitude to typing and nothing but dead ends with all stories. I'm trying to create an editable story for a friend's art project and at first I was sold on what I was doing but with each attempt I get further away from what I'm striving for. Out of my three ideas, one is childish and daft, the second feels like a retread of other things I've written and the third is utterly depressing and not very adaptable. I'm determined to finish all three and give them over hat in hand, praying they're close to usable.

I didn't take better advantage of my last hot phase and now what were terrific ideas for stories are being mangled and cast adrift, I never know whether to just keep writing or just leave it all alone until I get the spark back. Personally I blame work, everyday feels like 9 hours of pulling my own teeth out and by the time I've got home all sense of creativity is just replaced by food and sleep. I'd give three fingers to live off writing and wake up far more talented, I'd sacrifice a fourth for a muffin.

There are positives though it must be said. My beloved Liverpool are top of the league (for now), I have a new haircut and have made some progress romantically. Add to that I picked up Timecop today on DVD for £1! Credit crunch on this...

Shit yes, but for a pound it sure beats a punch in the nuts...

Tuesday, 21 October 2008

Leopold's Sunday Rage

Leopold: Turn on the television Mavis, it's almost time for Countryfile.
Mavis: Where's the remote?
Leopold: Oh I may have put it in that Roses tin.
Mavis: Why on earth did you do that?
Leopold: I have dementia.
Mavis: Oh yes.
TV: And now Countryfile, with Alan Carr.
Leopold: What in the blazes!
Mavis: Oh dear.
Leopold: But he's a woofter! Where's my letter opener, I want to write a letter.
Mavis: Wouldn't you rather have a pen dear?
Leopold: Yes one of those too.
Mavis: I'll put the kettle on...

Dear Mr. Carr

My wife and I have been avid followers of the programme Countryfile for many a year and my Sundays have been built upon the soothing voice of John Craven and the beautiful landscapes our great country has to offer. I cannot hide my disgust that you would sully my beloved programme with your mincing and flouncing about, like the son Eric Morecambe was too ashamed to admit to having.

Mavis: Here's your tea.
Leopold: Thank you dear, read it so far.
Mavis: Oh is that Alan Carr? He's nice.
Leopold: Have you no sense woman?! He has disgraced our favourite programme, have you been paying attention?
Mavis: Well what's wrong with him?
Leopold: Well for starters, he's a ruddy poof. A man with such an unstable grip on normality should not be allowed near animals or our beloved countryside. He has probably defiled it with his sick ways. Just look at him now, eyeing up those farmers, flitting his eyelids behind those utterly ridiculous glasses.
Mavis: I think he's talented.
Leopold: That pansy is bereft of talent, he is reaping the benefits of an overly politically correct society where hard working men like John Craven are cast aside in favour of the sexually deranged and drug addled youth of today.

Mr. Carr I am deeply troubled by your presence on Countryfile and I must warn you that unless you desist your attempts to pollute my program with your environmentally unfriendly homosexual emissions, my actions will be heightened to rather more extreme lengths. For the sake of preserving the waste of a life you are occupying, please heed my request.

Yours Sincerely
Leopold Whitford-Price

Leopold: There read that.
Mavis: Leopold! You can't say that! You can't threaten to kill him!
Leopold: I can say what I like, drastic measures are required for people like him.
TV: Join me again next week on Countryfile, when I'll be exploring Graham Norton's garden passage and we'll have music from the Scissor Sisters.
Leopold: Right that does it he's gone too far!
Mavis: What do you mean?
Leopold: Garden passage? Don't you see what he's trying to do? I've had it I'm going to kill him!
Mavis: Times have changed Leopold, we don't live in the same society anymore, you can't expect people to like the same things as before.
Leopold: You can't leave your back door open either, they're everywhere Mavis, sometimes at night I hear cooing from outside our window, savages they are...damned savages.
Mavis: I fear you've gone too far this time Leopold.
Leopold: Where are the car keys Mavis?
Mavis: You don't even know where he lives.
Leopold: I've got half a tank of petrol in that Laguna and I'll use every drop until he's smeared on my windscreen.
Mavis: Well remember we need some petrol in it, we have a neighbourhood watch meeting tomorrow.
Leopold: Oh yes, I suppose I better leave it then.

Thursday, 16 October 2008

If he's up there he must be pissed off...

My Sky box isn't fully working at the moment, so while waiting for a new viewing card it means that while channel hopping I have to look harder to find anything interesting, whilst trying to doze off in bed or in the mornings before work.

I've had to watch a lot more news, keep up to date with the financial crisis and the presidential race in America. The final debate was last night in New York and I still maintain that Obama could run over an orphan tomorrow and still be a better bet than McCain. It was interesting to see how Senator McCain seemed more preoccupied with bitching about his opponent than actually defending and contesting policies as Senator Obama was trying to do. McCain might as well have tickled him with a long feather across the desk, such was his attempt to rattle the democrat. Also the debate derailed often into an argument over 'Joe the Plumber' who apparently was more important than the economy, health care and education system put together. Joe the Plumber is a real guy, but the way they were talking about him was like he was a cartoon election mascot, each candidate championing the way they're going to make Joe's life better. He's a plumber, it's all downhill from there, or at best a career in porn.

So after that the hour was late but I stumbled on something far more disturbing than Joe the Plumber's pipe.

If you don't know of TV evangelist Peter Popoff, let me fill you in. He was a very popular faith healer during the 80's and came a cropper when he was exposed as a fraud (Who'd have thunk it!). He disappeared under the radar for a while, but he's back... and this time he's proposing the best thing since sliced bread...

Yep you got it, MAGIC BREAD! He claims God told him to make and prepare this bread, even seal it in those little plastic bags and heal the world. It's claimed to cure, HIV, dyslexicadgqh (that was insensitive of me) and also magically re-imburse people with huge cheques for thousands of dollars. Rev. Popoff is attempting to exploit people who have sunk so low that they see salvation in fucking bread, all because it's made to the recipe in Ezekial 4:9. What's next selling crosses, with Jesus on them? Oh wait...

But seriously, I'm technically a Christian since I was Christened, but despite only going to church when somebody dies or gets married I'd say I'll have less to answer for at the pearly gates than Peter will; should they even exist. I imagine getting into heaven to involve a lot of paperwork and an aptitude test, but that's another subject entirely. There's clearly a lot of money flying around in faith, it's probably one of the strongest financial institutions out there right now and if you're willing to stoop low enough to make a quick buck for yourself may I suggest Adam's Apples? Grown organically in the Garden of Eden and brought to you!
*Warning may cause encouragement from snakes and possible death, but it is part of your recommended 5 a day fruit and veg.

Tuesday, 14 October 2008

The Footballer's Cookbook

Upon learning that a book has been released highlighting the favourite meals of top professional footballers, I felt the urge to investigate further.

Turns out UEFA have launched an incentive to get kids interested in 'proper food' to keep them healthy. Very good in principle. Then come the players and their recipes...

Lick your lips at:

Steven Gerrard's Aromatic Sea Bream
Thierry Henry's Rice Cubana
Fabio Cannavaro's Pasta a la Siciliana
Miroslav Klose's Power Omelette
Ruud Van Nistelrooy's Salmon Grilled With Cloves

So after analysing each meal I decided I would dust off my apron and cook one. Now as a Liverpool fan I wanted to be loyal to Steven Gerrard but frankly I'd rather eat nails than Sea Bream. So next best pick was the Rice Cubana.

Now this is not a recipe as such, more what I did and what relation it had to what it's supposed to be.

I stuck the kettle on and stood about for three minutes.
I then poured the water expertly into a saucepan.
Once the water boiled I then applied rice, some more rice and then a small dose of rice. It is commonly known among my friends that my portions of rice could feed a million men, or John Travolta.
Since the rice was boiling, I decided to chop up two bananas. Part of the recipe, trust me
Then I poured and slowly simmered some passata sauce (not pasta, I can spell) in a smaller saucepan.
The rice had five minutes left to go, so I poured (a lot of pouring involved in this meal) some olive oil into a frying pan and then cracked three eggs in there. I tried the first one-handed but cocked up so did the other two the easy way.
Then I chucked the chopped banana into a smaller frying pan and after a few minutes of that everything was done, although I should've grilled the banana it turned out.

Now observe the picture above and you'll see how it should look. Mine turned about a leeetle bit different. My overlarge portion of rice was stacked in the middle of the plate, with the passata blobbed on top. The banana, once wrestled from the sticky 'non-stick' pan was arranged around it, mushed and cut into small bits, unlike the nicely arked and grilled bananas above. To literally top it off the fried egg was intended to be positioned above the rice, but instead just slid down the mountain like a kid in a log flume.

How did it taste? Weird, just plain weird. Weird and plain. The banana looked to be the most worrying part but it was actually the best feature, providing a nice sweetener to the odd mix of passata and rice. The egg just felt out of place, like Jesus in Iceland.

I wouldn't recommend it personally. I like Thierry Henry but I'm never going to eat at his house.

Friday, 10 October 2008

Bingo Night Live.....LIVE!!!

Bear in mind this is a minute by minute account of me and my good friend Bob playing Bingo Night Live on ITV Right now! Well when this was typed.

The Jackpot is £60,000
The male presenter is very camp and lives local to us, In fact he once went into Comet and bought a universal remote from Bob. Not the remote from 'Click' but a bog standard one for all.
The female presenter looks like a crisp packet turned inside out.

First game
I failed to register my cards in time, since my internet crashed and I had to watch Russell Grant's sweaty pie face tell me how lucky my star sign was going to be as the seconds drifted away. Bob won nothing.

Second game
Won nothing but just found out that Bob and I are officially world record holders! Not for losing but for taking part in the worlds largest online bingo game. Better than a poke in the eye.

Crisp Packet Lady just did the worst Dalek impression I've ever heard. Camp guy just agreed midway through me typing it.

Third Game
Bob has a good feeling about the top card. I don't.
Desmond just won £25, will perhaps buy some new clippers for the barbershop (a joke for the four people in the world who watched Desmond's)
An immigrant just won £200. Bob is outraged, but he has 4 numbers on his top card at least.
The immigrant is up for the full house as well..... could be another £500
69 hehehehehe...
The immigrant lost, justice! Was that controversial? Probably yes

Adverts. Harry Hill is annoying, he also used to be a doctor. Coincidence?
I quote: 'It's an historic night for bingo!' Says Camp Guy.
Something tells me we won't look back on this the same way we did for the fall of the Berlin Wall, because David Hasselhoff was there, if he's not present it isn't history as far as I'm concerned.

Final Game
£60,000 is on the table. Bob fancies the bottom card... weirdo
I can't quite believe I've stayed up for this, I have to be up for work in 5 hours and 20 minutes..
69 again hehehehe
I still can't see what's attractive about Bob's bottom card, especially since it only has four numbers and we've almost finished. It is an alluring shade of blue though.
Sorry £60,500 is on the table... my bad.
'You can hear a pin drop in the studio. I can't describe the atmosphere.' Says Crisp Lady. You just did dear.
I GOT A LINE! BOOYAH! My prize? Nothing.
KABOOM lucky number 7 wins the jackpot for some bloke in Margate. Bastard.

Well I'll wake up still poor in the morning and tired too. Shiiiiiit.

Career Change

Man: I'm looking to broaden my horizons.

Careers Advisor: Ok what kind of professions were you looking at?

Man: Well I want to make a difference you know? Travel, get around, really make an impact on society.

Careers Advisor: Well have you considers politics or terrorism?

Man: Hmm terrorism.

Careers Advisor: Do you have any previous experience in terrorism?

Man: Erm no I can't say I do, although I once ripped the wing mirror off of a Renault Scenic, but it was mainly accidental.

CA: Ok, so what makes you interested in it?

Man: Well I'm just keeping my options open really, I want to live a diverse life, try many things and gain valuable life experience for my memoirs.

CA: Well it's not really something an agency like us would handle, if you like I could get you a number for an Islamic Extremist?

Man: Oh that's alright I'll just check the Yellow Pages.

Tuesday, 7 October 2008

Bed Full of Spanners

Went to bed last night, tired, dazed and with a faint urge to vomit. I got under the covers and watched some NFL. The somethings were playing the thingymabobs and big men were running two yards, getting clattered then chest bumping each other. If there's one thing I love about American Football it's the enthusiasm. Plus it highlights rugby as the bland homoerotic sport that it is. There I said it.

I was trying to get comfortable but kept having cold flushes on my body. I assumed it was just my man-flu playing tricks on me and eventually with the help of some soothing jazz music (stop laughing it helps me think ok?) I took a return trip to Nod.

I woke up this morning with the same sensation. I pulled back the covers to find a bed full of spanners. Another prank from my housemate Rich. Where would I be without him? Probably still asleep and warm.

Sunday, 5 October 2008

T' Blog

So I've just returned from the north, as my slightly disrespectful blog title hints at and it was certainly a multi-faceted adventure.

After an early morning glass of orange juice and portion of trifle my long suffering Bristol City supporting friend Darren picked me up for the journey to Sheffield.

it's a small world after all #1
Halfway up the M1 and who do we pass? Only my own house mate going to Newcastle! Bob waved and for a good twenty miles it became a 'oh hello again' as we kept overtaking each other and after a few times it became difficult to make up funny gestures.

It became slightly depressing as the further north we ventured the lower the temperature got. We got there and had plenty of time to bimble around and explore what Sheffield had to offer. Which was more than I thought. I was ambushed by a gang of attractive students who fleeced me for all my loose change for a cause I can't remember, I saw a fountain (see dork in picture), admired some abstract knitware in an art gallery and witnessed some free running. Going back to the fountain though, if there's one thing Sheffield seems to do better than anywhere it's water features. It's like they gave half of their council budget to Charlie Dimmock and let her run riot, there are fountains, streaming walls, balls and waterfalls everywhere. Also we saw a building shaped like a massive kettle and what looked like a thirty storey Borg cube parked in the city centre.

As for the football match I saw, Bristol City were thumped 3-0 by Sheffield United, thanks to three very simple goals from poorly defended corners. City would be a decent team if they could pass and defend set-pieces. United could and therefore won. See football isn't very complex when it comes down to it.

After the game I parted with Darren and made my way to the railway station to catch a train to Rotherham. Why were you on a train to Rotherham Phil? Well dear reader I was on said train so that I could see my Mum one last time before she heads out to Malta. The journey was made all the more interesting with the arrival of a gang of Doncaster fans, amongst the Sheffield Utd fans, not to mention the Grimsby fans on the train platform. As tensions rose fortunately my stop arrived.

it's a small world after all #2
Guess Sheffield Utd's shirt sponsor? what are the odds.

So Mum met me at Rotherham station and I caught up with her and some of her boyfriend's family, who by the way are delightful people. My only quibble would be their obsession with You've Been Framed as though it was this brand new invention in comedy. Still it had been quite a few years since I'd last seen them and they were as accommodating and wonderful as ever.

The evening passed all too quickly and for the second time in a week I found myself saying goodbye to my Mother again the following morning. I've never really been very good at goodbyes, I always imagine some kind of big speech or something grand, but it's often an awkward hug and a wave instead. I made it onto the train with a minute to spare but without a seat.

Yet again I was spending two and a half hours sat on the floor opposite the toilet until my changeover at Coventry. Still the ride was highlighted by a nice exchange with a literature student, who I tried to maintain a conversation with on The Great Gatsby even though I'd never read it. My train reading was FHM since I'd forgotten to pack a book. It's amazing how they've removed most of the boobs from that magazine yet haven't even replaced them with decent articles. I still had my notepad though and as she marked out passages of her book for her coursework, I was scribbling out a childish story involving Bugs Bunny and a severed arm. My other company beside the toilet was a Chinese man with an Ipod and a young girl and her father who made his way through two cans of Skol.

One reflective moment was when the train stopped at Derby, a place of much significance to me from almost exactly a year ago. I thought back to my brief time there and how much had changed since. The closer to Coventry I got the more my legs cramped, worse still I had a small boy in first class blowing raspberries at me. What a waste of a good seat. At Coventry I discovered the maintenance on the lines meant that I had to finish my journey on a bus for another two hours to get home thoroughly shattered.

it's a small world after all #3
Isn't it weird when two people you know separately actually know each other from a different social circle? Yeah that happened. Not very interesting but still...

Friday, 3 October 2008

The Autocue (But not all of it)

Been working on a new story and here's a little excerpt from it


After sobbing uncontrollably to Chopin’s Nocturne in C Sharp Minor he feel asleep in the chair and the biscuit barrel rolled from his hand and onto the hardwood floor. The radio crackled and then music started to seduce the room, the light bulbs flickered and Alan came back to consciousness. A deep male voice emerged from the radio over a slow dark jazz beat.
‘Boy that could not have gone any worse could it? You should’ve drank those shots Alan, you snivelling prick.’ The voice oozed.
‘Listen very carefully to what I’m about to say Alan, do you have your wallet handy?’
‘Who do you bank with?’
‘Barclays, why?’
‘Aah goood, now get the wallet for me.’
The lights went out completely and the voice boomed ‘NOW!’ as Alan’s armchair shook. The lights came back on and Alan found himself with his wallet in his hand where the biscuit tin had been previously and his debit card sat on the armrest in a chip and pin machine.
‘What’s going on?’
‘Do you want to be a winner Alan?’
‘At what?’
‘At life Alan, do you want to win at life?’
‘How do you mean?’
The music stopped and the lights went out, the radio crackle halted and the television below it switched on, becoming the only light in the room. The screen showed a man sat behind a desk in an old fashioned office, his face looked heavily made up with flesh coloured paint. His suit was dark red and his hair jet black and short, swept across with pomade. He is looking down at something on the desk, then suddenly looks out to the viewer as if caught off guard.

That's all for now....

Wednesday, 1 October 2008

The Needy Optometrist

I booked my eye test the other day and they decided earlier on to call me to say how they were looking forward to my visit tomorrow. I'm sure it was just a pleasant reminder to not miss the appointment but still, I think they're coming on a bit strong for my liking. Right now I'm just not looking for a commitment. I'm sure they're sitting there waiting for the phone to ring counting down the hours until I arrive and when I get there we'll do the deed, I'll pay up and then there will be an awkward pause. The lady will gesture to the frames on display, maybe raise her eyebrows a little and then I'll have to let her down gently. All her good grace will disappear in a flash.
'You're just like all the rest Mr. Savory, shame on you!'
'Look I never promised you anything.'
'There's someone else isn't there? Vision Express? Specsavers?'
'No it's only ever been you, look I'm sorry ok, all I wanted was an eye test and well, I think we want different things.'
'Oh take your filthy prescription and get out!'

I know I'll feel shallow, crushing the soul of a caring creature but at the end of the day online is where the cheap glasses live. It's not the first time I've done this either, I once had an eye test at Vision Express and I looked at the frames out of sympathy then as the lady was popping out to the back for a brochure I bolted out of there. I know there are those who stay the course, they pay their money and they are faithful but me, I'm a free spirit, my eyes can't stay tied down to one opticians.