Thursday, August 31, 2006

Da Little People

Ah, back from a little holiday, in Oirlund, staying four nights just outside of Dublin, and I've taken the opportunity to catch up on some old friends. I did, it is true, get quite a cold, even hard, reception here,

but on the other hand I made up for it with a couple of cocktails at the delightful Westbury Hotel there in the background - beautiful chandeliers - and then onto the International for a quick half before watching its comedy offering upstairs, and then drank some more with some of said comedy offering as one of its purveyors is one of the aforementioned old friends.

I didn't plan on getting into a conversation that resulted in a discussion of the 80% test, the late Bill Hicks and Messrs. Dawkins, Jones and Chomsky. I did however make the point that the thing with ol' Garden Noam is that when you read his books you read the introduction/initial premise, are so depressed by the clarity of his case, left feeling so hopeless, that you don't bother with the rest of the book. In sixty pages he's made you totally convinced that US and most European foreign policy stinks, we're all busy living the life of Riley while the poor of the world cower beneath a shower of shit and shells; why do I want to read another four hundred pages of it? I'm not a complete masochist.

Dublin offers many many things, famously pubs and good cheer (unless you're the cabbie we had on Sunday morning who was a right miserable grunting bastard) but I'm afraid their Indian takeaways leave a lot to be desired. A lot of lot.

However, at the moment, Dublin offers this, and this is excellent. Beyond a comedy, played as outright farce, and with a few bolt-ons, highly entertaining, and very cleverly staged. Cracking.

Coming home, apart from not what I really wanted to be doing because I was having a good time with good company, was an interesting experience. For starters, I had the company of (and this is her real name) Cassandra. Prophetess of Doom. She sat next to me, because we were friends - I'd helped her with the automatic check-in machine, after all - and then came forth with a continuous stream of foreboding. The plane was late arriving, ooh, is there a security alert? It's going to be very late when we get on board...Whose are those unattended bags? Are they one of those men's (indicating three black men who were speaking in a language other than English)? I suggest that it is, and that one of their number has probably gone to the bar or, dare I say, for a crap. Hmmm, I suppose so....Look at how dark the clouds are, we're in for a thunderstorm, a real bumpy ride home I expect....and then a collection of references to the plane crash at the weekend. I pointed out that such an accident is unlikely at Dublin as they only use one runway. I toyed with the idea of getting out a book about the rise of Islamism, but that would have been unfair to the other passengers.

When we got onto the plane, the music being played was 'Heroes', and was followed by 'Waterfall'. Curiously, I had heard this exact combo in the same order two days earlier in a cafe in Dublin town centre. I like that kind of weirdness, gentle; could have been weirder, could have followed with 'Silver Machine' or better still, 'Brainbox Pollution' (that would have been the last straw for the Princess of Troy). Actually, I hope that was genuine gentle weirdness and coincidence, not one of those compilation albums that are "Great for Fathers' Day, only £8.99 at Tesdabury's."


Back to earth with bump on Monday morning, with the meeting with the GP to discuss the liver test business. He gave me a good grilling about my drinking. "Do you prefer Bacardi or Havana Club, Mr. The Baker? Are you a brown ale man, or do you tend toward the Pilsner glass? Burgundy or Bordeaux with your roast beef?" Or something to that effect.

Following further consultation with my sister, who knows about these things, I don't have anything to worry about, although it is understandable that I might take umbrage at the fairly aggressive manner in which he interrogated me regarding my consumption of alcohol, and particularly the implication that I might be denying any problem with drink. Anyway, he wants me to have a scan, probably lay off the pop for a while - the alternative is to lay of the LPS, and that isn't an option, as was made clear last year - so I'm a bit cheesed, but more by the interrogation than the possible outcomes.

I'm waiting for the day when he suggests that I give up pop music as it is having a detrimental effect on my toes, too much tapping is bad for you. He's barred tea, 'erb (well, to be fair he didn't), and he's done away with silver top, butter and cheese.


Today, a touch of the Little Flo's, oh Jesus Christ Almighty, Sparkly Eyes was in town. I could barely contain my excitement, and for once I really mean that. Apparently I am becoming increasingly obvious, do I care? She is just sooo sexy. It's all I can do to drag my eyes from her and try and concentrate on the business in hand. Which is not the business in hand I would choose to have in hand.

The Challenge? To quote the Greek Genius Socrates, "You don't shit on your doorstep." But really, she's gorgeous, bubbly, fun, intelligent. Ah, well, there we are.

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Git Gawn, Boy

Yes, my turn for a bit of a summer getaway, though most of the summer is gone. I'm off for a couple of days, to Dublin, lots to do there....

Before I go, just an odd round-up of recent things. iPol has taken up a rather cheeky game of waiting until I am admiring a particularly impressive collection of buns or baps then cracking open the Black Sabbath, so that even as I am possessed of slavering lust my ears are filled with hellish thunder and a panic-struck scream assuring me of impending and eternal, unrelenting damnation.

I tried a new barber today (Gosh, K, what an exciting life you lead), I bet you didn't realise that a No. 4 takes an hour in the chair, did you, but I also didn't expect to get a detailed account of fruit farming in Cyprus for my money, so I ain't complaining.

Here's a question to leave you all with; if I sell crisps and fizzy pop for a living, am I really in a position to start telling people what an ethical man I am, and how I have to turn down offers of promotion from my employers because I don't want to compromise my ethics?

Answers on a postcard, please, along with shared expressions of joy at the prospect of being woken up by a Serge Gainsbourg record, on the BBC (!!!), which delightful experience happened to me this week. OK, it wasn't the obvious, or 'Annee Erotique', but 'Bonnie & Clyde' will do for me. I began to wish I hadn't mentioned this at work when Mizz Doianne said that she didn't know what was so rude about 'Je T'Aime'.

Entre tes reins, bebe! Grrrr!

This dog digs a hot roll, with extra sauce, and easy on the onions.

I've said it before, but there is a lot to be found in favour of the French. Yes, I know that Johnny Hallyday doesn't count in their favour - and don't even get me started on the subject of Florent Pagny - but on the other hand there is imaginative motors, Toulouse saucissons, kir, two hours for lunch, and more cheese than you can shake a stick at. And that's just for starters.

That ol' nutter Jerry Lee Lewis is gracing me with his presence on the stereo, and we are not worthy. He's in the same league as Lemmy, for me, in that he just has no business still being alive, but I'm so glad that he is, and that he bothered to commit his talent to vinyl.

Other highlights of the week have included a visit to the dentist - good nick, ta, although a little evidence of ageing and the consequences of having a brace when I was a teenager - and also to the races, where I failed completely to land a punt, but there was the opportunity to enjoy the company of some attractive ladeez and generally get out and about and ignore some less attractive associates.

And also confirmation that 'Holby City' is just abysmal shite.

Right, it's a ludicrous time of night, and I meant to go to bed 3hrs ago, so I'm off.

See you all soon.

Sunday, August 13, 2006

Big Food, Big Ron, Big Yawns

You will remember this recent post, well would you believe that on Thursday this week I had a conversation with Grand Ron himself, en francais. This was at a hotel near Oxford. Ha ha ha. Very good of him to humour me.

It is pissing down with rain outside - I guess I'd be less happy if it was pissing down inside, and the only thing the telly has to offer is athletics from Goteberg. As a special treat, and probably why I compare the weather to pissing, the BBC have wheeled out St. Paula for us all to admire and worship, and there is lots of pontificating as to why we Brits haven't done very well, and it is yawn-o-rama. For me, the challenge of the day is not to retire into alcoblivion, but then I've had very little to drink over the weekend. I got up this morning only with the intent of finishing last nights curry, mmmm, chicken muglai, bombay aloo, onion bhajhi and a somewhat disappointing cheese naan, although it must be said the rest of it was excellent.

Ah, of course, to finish the athletics coverage, we have to have one of those montages so beloved of BBC Sport, where we take lots of clips of triumph and despair and replay it all to a couple of recent pop records, and everyone sheds a tear or two and feels nice and actually its just a cheap way of wasting time and filling up the schedule with what is in essence a repeat, which will almost certainly be repeated later in the day with the highlights coverage. Utter Bollocks. One of my less favourite things about Aunty Beeb.

Saturday, August 05, 2006

Last night I took great pleasure in doing something that I haven't done for a good few years.

I listened to some new Led Zeppelin. It was new to me, anyway. I hadn't done this since I was a teenager.

I'd forgotten what fun it can be.

Cottage Cheese Music! What a Noize!

Simple pleasures, eh?

'leading scientists report that hallucenogenic sweet rolls consumed on an orange shag rug at the krustybaker household lead to the spectral return of acid glam for 45 minutes yesterday...'

That would be scientists like this chap, then?

And as we've now cracked how to turn my photos into your photos; as long promised;

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Arcade Game Messiah

No, not him.

Is J-C JC? I've been enjoying 'Street Fighter', which I initially stuck with for Kylie Minogue, and it occurred to me that I was watching more than a punch-up between good and evil, oh yes.

This was The Second Coming.

The destruction of Satan needs but One, and that is J-C.

Does that make Kylie Mary Magdalene?

And on that theme

The mind boogles.

And here, an attempt to convey my recent entertainment by this phenomenon.

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

"To Have Begun, To Bake."

I'm watching a telly prangram about Ron Atkinson, Esther Rantzen and Marcus Brigstock(e?) going to France and having to learn French because there is no English, by immersion, and it is hilarious and I've done this and it's directly how I come to be here.


Here also looks nice, but I can't read this, so if anyone can confirm it's alrightness than that would be nice too.

Is it socially acceptable to take the Gideon Bible from a hotel room? I didn't think so but have reconsidered.