Saturday, October 31, 2009

19th Century Boy

Well, I've tried iTunes U. Couldn't find anything to get me enthusiastic about learning. Just got bored, really. All it did was prove to me I'm not cut out for study. Study is boring to butterfly minds like mine. Since school I've tried a few things but never with any conviction. A Political Economy degree. Boring. The Association of Accounting Technicians course. Extra boring. Michel Thomas's Spanish course. Sleep-inducing. I am destined not to see anything of worth through. I just wanna be entertained.

But what entertains me?

I've bought this ipod and I might as well use it. So I got the audio book version of Simon Schama's A History Of Britain out of the library. Boring. I downloaded Madame Bovary from LibriVox. Boring. Lord Byron's Don Juan. Boring. I'm like a surly kid.

But LibriVox has thousands of titles. And as they are so easy to download I will not give in. I will find literature in the public domain that I like and I will come out the other end smiling. My life is about to become a journey into the past.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

A Depressing Week

We are sat there, listening to the following...

"We were sitting in bed discussing the BNP. We think he's going to get the protest vote. People who have had enough of the main parties. You can't trust them. Enoch Powell was right, my dad was right. There will be rivers of blood. Our people's blood, what with all these knives they've got. We'll soon be in the minority in our own country."

My grandfather fought the Germans, not an ideology. It was his patriotic duty. He loved his country, his England. And he agreed with Powell 100%. A white Britain full of "our" people was what he wanted.

Nick Griffin says his is not a Nazi party. It used to be, but not any more. He supports Israel. Can you imagine a Nazi being on the side of the Jews?

Watching Question Time. Watching a bunch of young, middle class Londoners (not your true working class white ethnically cleansed Eastenders, of course) attack one man and his views. Views which are held by a significant proportion of people in the UK. Labour, Tory, Liberal, too, attacking him. The people with their snouts in the trough. The people a significant proportion of the population are disgusted with, want no more to do with.

The BBC shot themselves in the foot. The "lynching" was wrong. It entrenched attitudes and even gained Griffin sympathy from part-time racists, your UKIP supporters. It converted nobody to the right side. Was I supposed to applaud along with the audience? Shout out, "Go on, David, you tell him!"? Feel smug that my representatives shouted him down? My 80% of the panel, my 95% of the studio audience?

If the BNP are legally obliged to be represented on Question Time, the law is an ass and Free Speech takes precedent over respect for others. But if they have to be, let them discuss the events of the week, let's see how their poisonous minds work in debate. Don't have Griffin on next time. Get another odious man on there. Or maybe one of their odious women. They do have women in the party, don't they? The BNP isn't a one-man show, now is it?

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

The Digital Age

It's been some time since I gave a shit about the England football team. Apart from puking up at the sight of Terry, Lampard and Gerrard, my international mojo has gone. But Saturday saw a new me. My passion for my own team has gone.

I suppose it had to happen. I'm not a child any more, looking up to my heroes. I'm at least double the age of a large proportion of professional footballers. I'm even older than Billy Bonds was when he hung up his boots for good.

Yes, we lost to Stoke. But I still had the highlights to record on Sky Plus. Highlights? Who was I kidding?

So I phoned Sky. When I first got Sky Sports it was a fiver on top of the Sky Plus subscription of £10. Things have changed over the years.

There's no longer a subscription for Sky Plus. The Sports package costs £18 a month. Eighteen quid! Seven quid a game over the year! Ten lucky wins, ten bore draws and ten depressingly predictable defeats. What have I been doing with my life?

In other news, I have bought an ipod and have started listening to intellectual BBC radio podcasts. The BBC Podcast page has a search function where you type in your interest, "e.g. Moyles". I know he's popular but do people really download his podcasts? Do people actually find the twat funny and engaging? I despair of the youth of today.

I've also downloaded some lectures from itunes U. It's like going to university without having to do any work! I might just start skipping the lectures and go to the virtual student bar and spend my virtual parents' money on virtual beer!

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Jamie, The Young Karaoke Contender

You get a bit nervous the first few times but it's nothing really, you're amongst friends. I'm 23 now but I've got an old head on young shoulders. I suppose I'm lucky in that my uncle's an old hand. He's been doing it for 15 years. You can't buy experience. His Neil Diamond is the bollocks. And he was the one who introduced me to the music of Sinatra. He says I have something of the young Frank about me.

None of us drink much really. It ruins your performance. The only time I've really got hammered was on my 21st birthday. I had double vision and couldn't read the words to Hero. A famous song like that, you've got to give it justice.

The pubs we go to vary so much. Mostly they just leave us alone, though there is one where the landlord thinks he's Liam Gallagher. Which means I can't do my Wonderwall when we're there. Still, I've got loads more in my locker. Loads.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Two Drifters, Off To See The World

Andy Williams is the first artist "confirmed" to play next year's Glastonbury.

The luckiest couple in Britain are Mr & Mrs Ormondroyd from Blackburn.

Having come into some money this year, Bert and Hattie bought tickets on the off chance that someone they had heard of would be performing. Let's hope they enjoy the atmosphere and make the Glastonbury Festival a regular destination for years to come.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

A Commute Too Far

All Martin wanted was some peace and quiet. A few minutes quiet contemplation.

Sitting opposite him, a middle aged man was crouched over a laptop, tapping lightly on the keys, a look of self-importance on his face.

Martin could handle that.

To his right, a young lad was stretched out, eyes closed, mouth open, listening to what sounded like awful indie for the brain dead.

Martin could handle that.

To his left, a middle aged woman was playing a moronic game on her mobile phone, a gormless fucking look on her face.

Martin could handle that.

Then Martin's mother got on the train. She sat down beside him.

"I'm getting the early train this morning, love. Barbara's not in. She's got an appointment at the hospital. She hasn't told us what for. I'm sure it's nothing. Lovely girl, Barbara."

Martin could handle that.

Martin knew his mother wouldn't push it too far. She knew he liked peace and quiet in the mornings. She would awkwardly shut up now and shyly get out her Daily Mirror. Martin's mother was one of the few Mirror readers on a train full of Metros and Daily Mails.

"WHAT THE FUCK!" he exclaimed.

Martin's mother had pulled out the Mail.

Martin couldn't handle that.

Saturday, October 03, 2009

Head Soup

The little plane was full, flying over Africa, on its way to the documentary for Chef Aid.

On board were Jamie Oliver, Marco Pierre White, Jean-Christophe Novelli, Gordon Ramsay, Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, Antony Worrall Thompson, The Hairy Bikers, Nigella Lawson, Heston Blumenthal and Brian Turner. Pop star Gary Numan was the pilot.

Suddenly the plane started to splutter and Numan gave an announcement.

"I'm going to have to make an emergency landing."

They all woke up in the middle of the unexplored African jungle, tied up and surrounded by a hostile secret tribe of cannibals!

The tribe's chief was sitting on a throne in front of them.

"You know what I really fancy for dinner?" he said.

"No!" said the rest of the tribe in unison.

"I really fancy a bowl of head soup."

"Us, too!" said the rest of the tribe in unison.

So the tribe's butcher cut off the heads of the chefs, Oliver spitting in his face as he sawed the neck, Ramsay effing and blinding about the sloppy way he was cutting and Fearnley-Whittingstall asking for the recipe.

After four hours on a low heat, the soup was eventually ready. The chief was first to taste it. You could hear a pin drop as the rest of the tribe waited to hear the verdict.

"You have done remarkably well," he said to the tribe's chef. "The seasoning is, as usual, subtle yet piquant. The consistency is absolute perfection. But, I am afraid that this soup is not fit for such an illustrious tribe as ourselves."

"Why, Chief?" said the tribe's chef.

"You can blame me," said the chief. "I should have known. I am versed, after all, in the proverbs of the world. I should have known."

"Why, Chief?" asked the rest of the tribe in unison.

He raised his fists to the sky.

"Too many cooks spoil the broth!"