Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Wikipeadia Roulette, like chat roulette with less cocks

Hello Lums, here I am, infrequently blogging.

I thought it was about time for a return of your favourite game, the one harder than kidnapping a chubber, yes, its Wkipeadia Roulette.  That's where I select random articles on Wikipeadia and count how many I go through before I hit something I have a vague, possibly imaginary, knowledge of.  I never said it was fun.

Ah, prostate massage,
I remember  why I married you now. 
Anyway, here we go.

  1. Erivelton  Gomes Viana, aka. Erivelton. He's a Brazilian footballer I've never heard of, doesn't mean to say he's good just because he is Brazilian, I still remember Raphael Scheidt, the unfortunately named Celtic defender, who really was. 
  2. Raymond Couraud, aka, Capn Jack William Raymond Lee, a French soldier and gangster who did some soldiering in the war and some gangstering after it, an interesting fellow no doubt, but alas, I was ignorant. 
  3. WJLD, is a radio station in Fairfield, Alabama. It plays something called "urban oldies" music which just doesn't sound right to me. I always thought the letters in US radio stations actually stood for something and in this case they do, W J L Doss was the original owner of the station, but I only learned that in the last 20 seconds, so onwards. 
  4. Las Tres Perfectas Casadas. (The Three Perfect Wives) is a Mexican comedy (though it sounds more like a tragi-fantasy to me) made in 1953 not starring the three amigos. 
  5. Millionaire. Unfortunately not the shortbread, but the Belgian rock band. Yep, Belgium has a rock band, I didn't know that. 
  6. Rhamphodopsis, take a breath, its a distinct genus of ptyctodant placoderm, a fish type thing.  Until I read that I would have put sheckles on Rhmaphodopsis being an Egyptian Pharoah. 
  7. Joe Walsh, and bingo, he was in The Eagles.  Seven , that's not bad for me, just goes to show smoking and celibacy is not as bad for your brain as I had convinced myself. 
Tune in next time for a not at all amusing story about kung fu movies. 

Lang may yer lum reek. 

Sunday, December 2, 2012

A panda, a pigeon and a P45

There he is, Hands up Muthafuckaa!!!
Hello Reeking Lums, remember me?

Its been so long, to be fair, I have been busy and a lot of shit has gone down since last you saw anything up my lum.

So what have I been doing?  Well, the Great Big International School Sports day pretty much took all my summer and looking for a job has taken all my attention, fortitude and patience.

Lets start with the LOLympics. It was great wasn't it, the weather was kind, the public loved it and walking to work in the morning through Stratford you got a real sense of being at the centre of the world.   I had imagined my job would be a bit like Jack Bauers,  abseiling down tower blocks, car chases,  sinister phone calls with evil henchmen masquerading as government officials and a body count of his drones and gimps that  would make Skillz Millz from Taken blush.  In the end, thankfully it has to be said, it was pretty uneventful .   I remember mentally noting a few "incidents" along the way because I thought it would provide some scale to the issues being dealt with behind the scenes.(some other things may or may not have happened, I may have been making tea and missed them)

We had the North Korean flag faux pas and the associated panicky round up of the face painters at Hampden stadium, though it remains unclear how many requests had been made for the North Korean flag to be painted on anybodies face.  There was a pigeon loose in Wembley arena, we had to take it seriously, it was acting suspiciously.  There was a plague ship, somebody pissing in the stands at beach volleyball, tacks on the road of the cycling races and signs turned the wrong way at the equestrian events which made me think Dick Dastardly was competing.  A favourite episode was the police sending us a picture of a protester with a pandas head on to aid identification, though they could just have said, look out for the fella with the big panda head, that would have given us enough to go on.

An old copper I was working with had some great tales of the old days on the force.  One night they lifted a couple for getting involved in a drunken domestic.  The boy was still scrapping when they got him in the van and they had to sit on him to keep him still, his girlfriend was in the back of the van as well and she caught one of the policeman glancing up her mini skirt, " that's right, I've no fucking knickers on" she says, quick as a flash the copper replies " thank fuck for that, I thought you'd sat on my kebab"

The LOLympic Family, as they like to be known, take a bit of getting used to, not the athletes who I'm sure are humble, genuine people, but the officials are a bit up themselves.  I remember hearing it said that a group of official judges had said they were quite happy to take a train back to Central London, but they didn't want to wait on one. That left me wondering how that could be managed, just have a train on constant stand by I guess, if they had said they wanted to drive it too they probably would have been allowed to.  Biggest disappointment I think was the non appearance of the army of cheap prostitutes that were meant to descend on the city, I didn't see any, though apparently one of the super yachts parked in Canary Wharf used to get some stunners delivered at night.   You can read a bit about my opinion on the whole sorry situation here.  http://newsbiscuit.com/forum/topic.php?id=47954

The other big summer distraction was finding a job.  My expectations were reasonable, 15 minutes from Kirkintilloch,  BMW/Merc company car, corporate credit card, international business class travel to far flung interesting places, private health including dental, gym membership, private school for any future children, 10% employers pension contribution, loads of free stuff and a salary about 300% of the national average, that would do.   I spoke with RIM, the Blackberry people, you could smell the decay on them, if they are still in business in 2 years I'll be surprised, I spoke with a software company that provides processing tools for the hotel business, they didn't really know what they wanted, I spoke with Kelloggs, this was a Grrrreat number, but they didn't want me in the end and I even flew to Munich for an interview with a software firm needing a security meister.   In the end I accepted a job with Britain's favourite domestic and motor insurer, with none of the pre-requisites listed previously, though the pension is decent, hope I get to spend some of it. 

 I'm glad I started the job hunt early though, way back in March.  Its crazy to think you will get offered the first job you go for, or even think its wise to accept the first one, but it can be a demoralising experience when you get so far through the process, answering the same daft HR questions like, "Tell me about a time you had to give someone a difficult message" ( I, of course worked at Port Dundas Distillery (RIP) previously, and any message where you asked anyone to do anything was generally thought of as difficult and met with bear like scowls and ill conceived arguments for not doing it). Yazz would be more use as a lift attendant than some of they lazy fuckers.  Anyway, as I was saying, to get so far, over weeks or months then not get the job is heart breaking, the only solace being in Mums old adage, "Whits fur ye, will no go by ye"  which is a nod to fate, and not to question it to much.  

That cements me in London for a while longer I suppose. But whits fur ye will no go by ye

So, nice to be back, I can now call myself an infrequent blogger all over again. 

Lang May Yer Lum Reek 

Friday, May 18, 2012

Honest, it was an elephant and anyway, where did all the hunchbacks go?

Hello Reeking Lums

I've just not two seconds ago learned that many marketing pictures of watches and clocks picture them at 0950 or 1410 because the position of the hands resembles a (rather angular) smiley face.   That's like some kind of Swiss voodoo mind control that is. 
Meh, I'll have to see more
 before I believe it

Anyway, enough of that, I'm eager to relay a story to you that I heard a few Peroni nights ago.  Are you sitting comfortably? Then I'll begin.

A friend of mine had been working in South Africa on a very demanding and stressful contract for a couple of years, after it was finished, he, lets call him John and his work mate, we shall call him....Marty, decided they would like to chill, recharge the batteries and go on a bit of an adventure.  So they bought a jeep, loaded it up with supplies and drove off into the interior for 4 months, driving up to Mozambique, and across southern Central Africa all the way to Namibia and back again via the Cape and South Africa.   It sounded brilliant, the tales of camping under the stars with lions roaring in the distance, the peculiar surprising people they met and the genuine hospitality and outrageous friendliness of your average Joe in Africa.

OH MY GOD!!!  Its true
The watch industry is controlling our free will with smiley watches

One night they pitched camp in Botswana somewhere, out in the country, miles from anywhere with a blanket of stars above them and the chirrup of a billion bugs for background music.  They climbed into their tent and drifted off to sleep.   
Through the night, John woke up for whatever reason and was contemplating the stars that could be seen through the fabric of the tent, a slight noise outside  he took notice of, but wasn't alarmed as it was probably some creature or another sniffing around the camp, then he noticed the stars disappear above him and two gleaming white tusks loom over the tent, the lack of alarm turned to frozen shock.   Elephants apparently get around very quietly for a big thing and some of them, in this case, a big bull, had wandered into camp and discovered the tent.   It gave it a gentle little kick, John at this time thinking he's going to be crushed under a clumsy elephant didn't want to speak or shout or make any noise in case he was panicked into a stompy squashy retreat.   Then it grabbed the top of the tent with its trunk and started to give it a bit of a shake, obviously trying to figure out what this thing was, John by this time couldn't contain himself..... marty, he whispered with no response, marty....marty.......MARTY....still no response to Johns increasingly frantic whispered alerts, Marty was obviously sound asleep.  The elephant got bored and trudged off, disappoined probably, and that was that, until the morning and John saw all the elephant shit about the place. "At least when I show Marty this lot he'll believe my story" he thought.  When Marty woke up he explained the happenings of the night before and said he couldn't believe he didn't feel the tent shaking or hear him calling his name.  Marty said "I did", "what?" says John, "why didn't you respond?"  Marty replies, "I thought you were masturbating and didn't want to embarrass you"?  "What!", says John, "even though I'm calling your name in hushed little tones and the tents about to get shaken from its guy ropes, you still thought I was having a wank?", "er, Yup".   I thought this was one of the funniest things I'd heard for like ages.

It was shortly after this, it may even have been the same night I had such a vivid memorable dream that I thought I should record it in some way, in case its a portent of future events, then I can say without doubt or fear of Derek Acorah calling me a fraud "I knew that was going to happen".   I dreamt that Stonehenge was stolen.  I was there, witnessing it, like the schoolboy hero in a boys own comic, hiding behind some gorse bushes in the dead of night watching as the blocks were lifted on to flat bed lorries and driven away.   In my dream, I'm sure I had the inner conviction that it was at the behest of a Russian billionaire and he was going to re-erect them in his garden fortress.  He got away with it too,  next thing I remember was standing around in the morning with a local policeman, who looked uncannily like PC Murdoch, with his hat off, scratching his head and rubbing his chin wondering what had went on.   If it happens, you heard it here first. 

Another disappearing thing I thought about the other day is hunchbacks, you just don't see them around these days.  We had one live over the road from us when I was growing up in the 70s/80s so perhaps I'm a bit more sensitive to them than the ordinary man in the street, not the ordinary man in our street of course, because they will be just as familiar with him as me.  And when I think about it, we had one at work aswell back in the 90s.  One came on the tube the other morning and it took me by some surprise, it was the first I'd seen for years. 
I had a girlfriend once that told me she had a fear of dwarfs, i thought, well, that's not very debilitating, I mean, how many dwarfs do you see in the average day especially if you steer clear of Warhammer shops and are careful around pantomine season, then I left her flat and met one on the stairs, he lived in the same block, which I thought was a spectacular quirk of fate.

I've got more to tell, I went to Munich, drove a thousand miles in a mini-bus , I put on clowns makeup and wore new shoes that ate a good portion of my feet,  I know how to control a runaway camel,  but these tales can wait.   

Lang may yer lum reek.  

Sunday, April 15, 2012

John Steinbeck, M&Ms and a Premier Inn, sounds like a good night, it wasnt.

Greekings from the Lum side, 

Hey George,
Did you bury the body good? 
I've never really got M &Ms marketing.  They portray them as lovable little characters in appealing colours that we are meant to scoff down like a big cruel giant, consuming families and whole communities of them , and feel good about it.   
There is a wise cracking one, full of street marts ( an undoubted pain in the arse) and one that I'll call a retard (that you wouldn't ask to babysit).  That got me thinking M&M stood for Mice and Men, these things are like the original Lennie and George, perhaps George strangled a Smartie at some point and they are on the run from the confectionery Interpol.   The idea of that might well be true, but actually the letters stand for the founders of Hersheys, Forrest Mars and Bruce Murrie, I'm guessing Bruce is the dim one.  
This pointless preamble is really to introduce my visit to M&M World.  In the heart of London's Theatre Land, its like 4 floors of chocolatey whores in there.  These candy characters are selling everything,  I expected to see a manky curtain in the corner where Sue, the green one, who I think is a girl, though her name is the only thing that gives that away, will be waiting, fag in hand, cheap shoes  and the promise of a happy ending.  
The place was heaving with people, lapping it up, buying key-rings, plates, t-shirts, there was even a pair of sunglasses with diamantes on the side which would normally say D&G, but instead said M&M, and they wanted £120 for them.  Who would buy them, Bertie Bassets trashy daughter Britney?
There were big dispensers so you could fill up a little polythene bag of the same tasting sweety, granted, you could have a chocolate one, or a peanut one, but that still adds up to a variety of 2 sweeties.  The dispensers had a lever on them that you pulled with your bag placed underneath to catch a portion.  I thought, not unreasonably in my mind, that each pull would measure out a standard weight, but no, they just keep coming, spewing out like the Wizard of Oz's vomit.  I discretely discarded that bulging bag and gingerly selected another group of jolly little candy people.  It was £5, and I felt as if I'd been coshed and had my pockets rifled.  
At the back, deep down on the lowest floor, there was an area behind a glass wall, where laboured a white coated teenager in what was hilariously called the colour lab or something, like there coming up with new colours, or is it an M&M farm, where the young M&Ms are born and raised in batteries ready for the big day they get selected and poured into a bag and onto a weighing scale.  

One exciting piece of news I'm sure you'll be delighted for me to share with you.  In this Olympic year, I managed to set my own personal best in a discipline that I have a particular aptitude for.   
It happened a good few Saturdays ago,  I had offered to take the train down to Tunbridge Wells to help a friend with some heavy lifting when they moved flat.  I'm never going to set any PBs for heavy lifting, so that's not it.  
Afterwards, we had a few beers, taking the opportunity to enjoy a few out side the city walls for a change.  Again, not a personal best, it was a fairly conservative session with me begging my leave at around 22:30.  This in theory gave me plenty of time for the 55 minute journey to London, getting me there in time for the last tubes home.  So, imagine my delight and surprise to be shaken awake by the guard at 01:30 about 4 miles from where I had started, in Tonbridge, Kent.   I had slept for 3 hours and covered some 80 miles sound asleep on the train.  Take into account the 1 hour the train was stationary at Charing Cross in London, where the guard was obviously not as diligent in his duties and it all adds up to a new personal record. 
I thought I had actually been carried on the train all the way to Hastings on the Kent coast and back, but an interrogation of my phones wherabouts history, showed that was not the case and I had to stick to 80 miles. 
Normally, being deposited at a foreign train station in the early hours would mean no more than a search for the bus stop and to enter the night bus lottery,  but I was off the night bus radar and a taxi would have been hundreds....probably.   I decided to walk about Tonbridge and think about what I could do, if worst comes to worst, just walking for 5 hours will mean the first train of the morning will be due.  Trouble was, Tonbridge isn't that big, and after the 3 or 4th time up and down the high street I was frankly bored and I imagined I was attracting the kind of attention John Rambo would get if he ambled into town.  
It was about the coldest night of the year and about -10 degrees, I was actually beginning to get a bit anxious.   I remembered that educational film from when I was a kid about how to recognise the onset of hypothermia. Sitting down and falling asleep if I remember is not a good idea.  In the end, with my feet going numb and breathing getting painful, I decided to hail the one cab in town and find a hotel.  The Premier Inn, £65 for the night, for about 4 hours sleep.  So there you go, 80 miles and £65, I think pips the mileage from Glasgow to Perth in what was my previous best.    I'm quite happy to retire now, from my sleeping on trains career. 

Lang May Yer Lum Reek.

Friday, April 13, 2012

CGI and the Russian barbershop

Don't know how my hairdresser ended up in this pic,
is that a rouble spinning machine she working 
So , Friday the 13th.  I could have stayed under the duvet all day, but I like to live perilously, so out I went into the city, cradled in fates fragile clasp.   

A haircut was on the ever expanding list of things to get done, and I thought, whats the worst that can happen at a barbers, its not like I have flowing locks and an upcoming modelling assignment.  I am undeniably follicly challenged so it’s the same haircut for me every time, even when the hairdresser says, “What would you like” like there are options.   I’m sure they just say that to rub it in, a reminder that all the years of training at Snip Camp are wasted on the likes of me.   
Sometimes I like to say, "well, I thought the Thor look would suit my face,  but then, tell you what, just the usual, the number 1 all over".   
You shouldn’t be experimenting with hair anyway at my age, even if I did have enough to go round and do something with, I reckon I would just say the same.  You don’t see George Clooney with new locks do you.  They should of course be grateful it only takes like 10 minutes at most to cut my hair, which puts their hourly rate up there with astronauts and plumbers.   
I’ve started going to a shabby little shop just around the corner,  its shared with a man that has a sewing machine and there is a constant stream of women coming in to get their aprons mended or whatever.  The hairdressers though are all Russian or similar.   One of them, a generously proportioned lady, with yellow hair has a very distinct aroma, its either night before vodka, or maybe some kind of thinning agent but either way it suggests a darker side. Maybe up all night manning a Russian gangsters forgery press.   The good thing of course about Russian hairdressers, even if the opportunity is fleeting, is that there is no pointless conversation.  So "do you have holidays booked this year?" , or, " you on holiday today?" or ooh, i could go a holiday!"  None of that thank the Gods, their instincts are so intent in adding their own little bit to the next tractor coming down the line. 

I’m loving Camden Market, its got a huge eclectic collection of stuff to browse around, every taste catered for, I even managed to find a stall selling deep fried Mars Bars and other chocolatey battered confectionery.  I had a deep fried cream egg, just to try it out you understand, that and I thought people would think I was just munching down a chicken ball from the Chinese.  Verdict was actually favourably, sweet obviously, but the warm melting chocolate was a nice contrast to the cooler fondant, and it all worked rather well, if you forget the fact its come out a deep fat frier. 

Oh, you want a basin?
It must have been that prawn cocktail. 
 I passed the billboard for the new CGI fest, Wrath of Titans which promises to be all shit and sandals.   Judging by the poster its even got a big two headed ill-defined monster, vomiting what appears to be carrot and coriander soup all over the shop.  Not pleasant admittedly, I certainly wouldn’t want to clean it up, but come on Titans, you must be able to do better than that.  
Mind you, with the John Carter movie flopping, and Titans not getting its money back in short shrift, I think the old sword and monster epic has had its day, I predict we wont be seeing any of them again for a while.   

CGI is good when its done well,  when it augments and enhances reality, like the battle scenes in LOTR where without CGI you would never appreciate the scale,  but I’m tired of these designers coming up with daft looking monsters.   Avatar had big beasts with 6 legs, why would they have 6 legs, what quirk in evolution would make 6 legs better than 4 for a big liony-rhinoceros type thing.   
I'm not saying wheels are an evolutionary abomination,
I'm just saying, I cant get up the fckin stairs
If they had had wheels I could understand.  I think in a million or so years, if we are still here, we might have developed wheels or something, they will grow out of or big lazy flabby bum cheeks.  
It’ll start off as muscle development from all the sitting and sedentary lifestyles we live, because we’ll start to shuffle about on them,  its so much less effort to stand up after all, these shuffling muscles will eventually grow and mutate in to little casters......... probably, and  as the speedier shufflers get all the girls and doughnuts those will develop into full spoked, gleaming blinging rims bitches, probably with a nice set of chromed spinners setting the whole thing off.

Anyway, look at the time now, its taken me all day, believe it or not, to put this together, and I havent had any noticeable bad luck or obvious misfortune, so 

Lang may yer lum reek. 

Thursday, April 12, 2012

The greatest trick the Devil ever pulled, was convincing people he was funny.

Greekings Reeking Lums, 

Going down laughing is infinitely
preferable to just going down
6 months to go working on the big International Sports day, I'm pretty sure it will be great, but it also means the looming prospect of joblessness for me when its all done.  
Around the same time the final spent firework at the Paralympic Games closing ceremony falls back to Stratfords regenerated streets I'll be finished.  
I'll be looking forward to a rest, but you can only really enjoy a rest if you know its not an infinite one and you can actually still  afford to feed yourself.   
It doesn't help that my best pal and perennial Peroni partner has left, gone to till the soil in the hotel business, another mate discovered the escape tunnel that comes up in Abu Dhabi and my excellent boss too has found a seat in a lifeboat and has pootered off to the media business.  
Good luck to them.  

I did have a funny day at work a couple of weeks ago.  I volunteered to help make a security awareness video for the "firm"  which involved me, in disguise, in various security scenarios.  Now, we're not talking about active shooters or bombs on buses going off if the speed drops below 50.  Its more, your documents left in the printer and the value of ID badges messages.   
The highlight was having the videos, oh yes, there was a series of them, played in front 200 cynical, hard nosed security professionals that wanted to go home at the end of the day, but had been told to stay late and see our fantastic films.  So after 10 excruciating minutes of the silenciest silence I've never heard, and the reddest redness my head has ever been, I was introduced to the mute, humourless horde. 
I had to explain the content and talk about the messages, but decided to go for comedy instead, as I always do at inopportune moments.   "Hello, I'm Troy McClure".  I'm not obviously, and I did give my own name, "you may know me from such informational films as "Something Juicy to Read and Tailgating! Door to Disaster."   A new, deeper more spiteful silence enveloped the hall, "never mind, carry on I said to myself, at least they'll hear you".  "Well, I must say, I'm delighted that you all saw past the comedy elements in the films (and there were plenty) and managed to take on board the very serious messages contained within the films.  You cant get quieter than silence, but if gurning expressions could suck the residual sound waves that are above and below the human ears spectrum out of the room, then what we would have had is an audio vacuum, I may have come across as being slightly mocking, but still, no need for aggressive indifference.  I talked for 5 minutes, reinforcing our points, then closed with a bit of humorous self deprecation, which, even though I say it myself,  I'm not that good at.  " I must say, I've been working for this organisation for two years, I'll take so much away from the experience, after these films, I now know, dignity and credibility are not among them" .  And that was that, I had died, but had learned a valuable lesson, the security professionals of the UK wouldn't know funny if it was fisting them with day-glo Marigolds on.  That's a good thing, we don't want them getting distracted by comedy capers.  

Viva ze Revolution!!
Can we stop off at  Aldis on the way? 
I'll miss London if I'm honest,  I think it must be one of the best cities in the world in which to live.  I think that must be true because of all the people from every corner of the world that end up here.  I love that diversity, so many different looking people.  Until you get to the office door, you hardly ever see the same person twice, its a constantly changing canvas that you never tire of.  There was a guy on the tube the other day who was the spitting image of a young and fiery Che Guevara.  He had the khaki military bush coat, the wiry beard  barely meeting the adolescent moustache and thick unruly glossy black Argentinian hair poking out from underneath his beret.  He was trying hard to be Che Guevara I think, mind you, the Waitrose carrier bag kind of detracted, but none the less a good effort.  I really don't think Che Guevara would shop at Waitrose, would he shop anywhere in fact, or just live off the good will and charity of grateful liberated peasants.   There aren't many liberated peasants around these parts, all are still well and truly under the yoke of The Man,  so I guess Che Guevara would need to pick up some groceries, but surely he would support the little corner shop, or the ethnic fair trader.   

I have suddenly gotten Twitter.  I don't mean got it, like downloaded it and generated an account, I mean just twigged the concept and meaning of it, and its a hoot.  I was always reticent, I genuinely have a lot of affection for Facebook and didn't want to feel like I was being unfaithful.  And it sat there, in my favourites folder,  like a feathery lure, but one I was too wary to approach, not wanting to put the work in to get to know it, reluctant to invest in a relationship when I was perfectly satisfied with the one I had.   Facebook has let me find old and distant friends, keep in touch with ex-colleagues and maintain a watchful, ever anxious and sometimes mortified eye over some entertaining fun loving kids, mine I hasten to add before The Police get involved.   Twitters not for keeping in touch with friends you already know, its about reaching out to strangers, offering something that someone else may be tuned in to, or turned on by and creating friends,  well, virtual ones, or not, it doesn't matter.   It turns out, its a laugh, there are a lot of people with genuinely funny thoughts bursting out of them.    The trouble is, I get distracted, I've been meaning to write something for weeks and weeks but I end up spending all my inanity on social networks and none on the Reeking Lum,  must try harder.  

Lang May Yer Lum Reek 

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Jings, crivens, from eating to bleating and carnage in between

Howdy Lums,

That's in honour of the Superduper bowl that was on when I started writing this.  I saw more of it than normal, at least an hour, which included about 7 minutes of actual play, before retiring to sleepy town.  I've only a vague idea of whats going on, but how can it not be a spectacle worth watching, its 65 aside and the sporty equivalent of head butting buffalo's.

January and February have been annoying months, well, I mean, more things than normal have annoyed me, and not January or February being annoying, though, thinking about it, they are shitty months, long, cold, wet, skint and full of annoying happenings.

Frankie and Bennys new  cutlery friendly
departure lounge menu
The first thing that really annoyed me was the dinner I snatched in Stansted airport.  

Starving and on a low carbs diet, I plumped for a steak from the generic Italian themed diner.   Let me tell you how arduous eating an airport steak is post 9/11.  Its because of the cutlery, the knife they give you is like the one that comes with a play-doh gift set.  It was going like a fiddlers elbow trying to get through that thing, I swear I expended more energy than I managed to take in. There was no cutting edge to the knife, so I have to imagine it was the heat generated by my berserk sawing that melted the steak into sinewy separation.  I nearly missed my flight with the time it took to eat that thing, and I couldn't lift my bag because of the lactic burn in my slicing arm.

Back to vaguely interesting things.  At work I was visited by a boffin from one of those secretive government departments that come up with James Bonds gadgets.  Or at least, thats what I'm pretty sure they do, and not as a colleague dismissively suggested, just sorted the WiFi in GCHQ.  This guy, with his pasty skin, ponytail and and long leather overcoat had obviously spent a lot of time watching Blade movies but it was also an indication that these people don't get brought to the surface often.  The language he used probably makes perfect sense deep down in the brain bunker as he and his chums try and reproduce all the technology from Star Trek but up here, among IQs that average less than a hundred, its like the white noise radio astronomers get excited about. And why did he want to speak with me?  I would tell you, but they are probably monitoring my keystrokes from space and the guy sitting in the corner of the cafe looks like a background extra from Underworld, so for the moment, I'll keep that to myself.

I went to the pictures a couple of weeks ago to see Carnage, excellent it was, genuinely laugh out loud funny despite the woman sitting next to me, pulling her phone out every 5 minutes to send or receive a text, or to check if she had received one, or even just to have a look at her screen saver, because it makes her smile or something.  
I've just invented an indiscreet i-phone user
   bludgeoning device  

This is almost as annoying as a ring tone.  In the darkness of the cinema, the brilliant light from her poxy       i-phone was an all pervading distraction, I began to feel like a bug, hypnotised by the light, getting drawn towards it with dreams of nirvana flashing across my mothy brow.  Nirvana for me though would have been grabbing her phone in mid-text and throwing it with all my might down the cinema.    I imagined it spinning   through the air in slow motion, like the femur in Space Odyssey, and as it landed, the entire audience, but one, two if you count her pathetic boyfriend, would stand up and cheer, hoist me to their shoulders and carry me all the way to The Office of Cinema Etiquette, where I would unveil a statue of me hurling an i-phone (other makes of phone are available and equally annoying).

I see faces...everywhere
That was annoying, but THE most annoying thing, and its really getting on my thruppennies is the language used in facebook updates.  Why do Scottish people, and remember, I am one of them, feel the need to write a status update as if they are a Broons scriptwriter, typing phonetically exactly how it comes out their mouths.  Now, phonetics is a wonderful teaching technique for three year olds, but if your old enough to work facebook, your old enough to write English.  I can, and often do speak in my home town dialect, and I can understand it like a native when its spoken to me, but its really hard to get your eyes around it when its written down.  And before anyone says " your jist aw saft noo yiv gaun tae london" " an ener hing, am gaun ooot tae get pished" " Jings crivvens n help ma boab PC Murdoch is gaun tae catch us plunderin aipples" or anything like that,  remember you write for others, whats the point of writing a status update for yourself, you already know what your doing, so it would be nice to read your status updates with all the letters in the proper order or at least, if your going for  "a braw Scots tongue" and that can be great. Example, DC Thomas has never been hard to read, but they don't mangle it and go out of their way to replace commonly used English words with some made up regional short cut.    

Saying that,

Lang may yer lum reek.

Monday, January 2, 2012

Letting the brain take the strain.

A right reeking new year to you both,

The Glasgow-London Darjeeling Express, there's room for a small one
I've started writing this on the train south, heading back to  Mt Olympus.   The train is packed out, like one of those you see in India with people squatting on the roof and clinging like limpets to the side as the telegraph poles brush past their arse.  
I have a seat though, I pitched up early as soon as I realised I had no seat reservation, in fact, because of my ungainly canter along the platform I was first on the train and had my pick of pews in the unreserved carriage.  It wasn't until I attempted to reach the canteen car that I realised how bad it was.  
There were people stuffed everywhere, standing, sitting, lying wherever they could, with suitcases, bodies and bags blocking every door and passageway.  I struggled through for a flapjack and a latte and nipped into the toilet on the way back, the 3rd world travel experience was reinforced in there.  The sink was full of water which meant that it slopped over the side every time the train rounded a corner or in fact moved at all, flooding the floor and seeping out into the passage.  I pitied the squatters huddled around the door as I exited, they've probably paid a hundred pounds for this experience. 

Its that time of year when we're encouraged to consider resolutions and self improvement plans, in a hope the coming year will actually see something achieved.   Mine are simple enough, lose some of my 14 stones of weight, a stone and a half to be precise, and balance the books.    
I'm going to achieve the first by sticking to a low carb diet, cutting out bread, potatoes, rice and pasta.  Easier said than done when you rely on convenience food at work, its all sandwiches, pasta salads and shit that fills you up for an hour.  
The second I will attempt by judicially noting every pound of spend and hopefully that will depress me so much I'll be happier locking myself in the flat rather than go anywhere spendy, like The Slug and Lettuce.   

Oh, nearly forgot the most important one, bear in mind I'll be out of a job about the same time the final Olympic closing ceremony firework falls back to earth, I need to GET A JOB. 

Lang may yer lum reek.