Sunday, January 31, 2010


Turns out, its pretty difficult to buy ninja weapons at toy shops anymore. Its political correctness gone mad, nanny state gone bananas and anti-ninja laws gone bonkersarooni. I remember back in the day when you used to be able to pop down to your local Toys R Us and buy a playschool bath toy, followed by a cannon, some garottes and a selection of grenades. Long gone are those days. All I wanted to buy yesterday were some nunchucks. Some frikkin' nunchucks. Could I find them anywhere? Could I blimey. I'm not sure what that means but I heard someone say it once and I liked it. For those that are uninitiated, nunchucks isn't some sort of sport for holy women. No, its a sophisticated ninja weapon combining two rather hard sticks and a chain to connect them with so you can fling them in people's faces. Or do a proper Bruce Lee in Enter the Dragon stylee and smack up some peoples proper like. I need some for the play thingy this afternoon and I searched the realms of the West End all the way to Kilburn High St, where shops happily sell lighter fluid next to party poppers, but alas none of them had nunchucks.

The biggest disappointment was not the lack of nunchucks, but more my brief visit to Hamleys. I haven't been to Hamleys in quite some time, but it used to be a magical house of wonder. I remember scrambling up the stairs and running around all the different sections from pirate costumes to transformers toys to small furry monkeys and the sort of things built with Lego that you could only dream of making, when in reality you know you'd lost the last corner bit you'd need for Darth Vader's head. It had that old Victorian building feel where you might expect to pop into the loos and end up in Narnia. It was incredible and truly held aloft its title as best toy shop in the world ever. As I strolled in to look for ninja weaponary of the more plastic kind, I was excited to have a bit of a look around without looking like a dodgy lone man in a kid's toy shop.

Its Hamley's 250th anniversary and what they've done to celebrate is to entirely gut the whole place and rip all of its enchantment and wonder out. There is now just one floor for boys, one floor for girls, and the other three contain the sort or pap that even Tiny Tim would say 'bullshit' about on Christmas Day. Gone are the acres of fancy dress and when I asked one of the 'not-very-helpers' where to find it, he pointed me to a selection of four costumes, containing two wizards, one knight and one spaceman, complete with a huge lack of imagination. I was about to storm out in anger, when I turned around to see two imperial Stormtroopers, Leia in the bounty hunter costume from Return of The Jedi and some shit characters from the prequels that noone cares about. Suddenly, much like a child, I got a bit excited. Then several men in hi-vis jackets pushed me out of the way and it became clear as they left the 'party area' that this was part of some rich child's over elaborate birthday party. All the other excited kids where shoved out of the way and like a tiny emperor, snooty boy and his family lorded over the force.

I can only assume someone has handed Hamleys over to the dark side. You want to know why kids are obese and stabbing people? Because you no longer have a whole wall of pointless bendy straws and gyroscopes, Hamleys, thats why. You have deprived the imagination to the point where these kids will go home, bereft from the lack of attention from an imperial guard (who in all rights shouldn't give them attention anyway as Vader wouldn't allow softness like that) and instead seek solace in eating till they burst or stabbing friends with the real versions of the ninja toys they couldn't buy in their in the first place. Probably. Maybe I'm just jealous I couldn't have a pic with General Grievous.

Forgot to post this yesterday, but on my way back on Friday night, I tuned into the ever brillant God's Jukebox on Radio 2, Mark Lamarr's brilliant show. His guest was a man called Geno Washington, who, in my mind now joins the ranks of James Earl Jones and Tom Waits in the stakes of voices I'd like to have for a day. Check him out, listen, then imagine asking for a cup of tea with those tones. Amazing.

Lastly, last time I'll plug this, but despite footie and tennis boredom, there is culture happening today. Come along to the Pleasance for 4pm for some of this:


Saturday, January 30, 2010

Busyness Time

Tonight I have, through mishap and stupidity, managed to not get three possible different gigs. Some due to cancellation, others due to me not thinking that the others may be cancelled. I'm a complete fool. Aha but who is the fool? The fool with the cancelled gigs or the fool who is really looking forward to a night off? Its the poor fool that doesn't benefit from either of these. Oh. Oh well. Still I'm really looking forward to a night off. This afternoon shall have Comedy 4 Kids mayhem, whereby I shall completely wing it as I have no new material for them and then I'm off for drinks at a friends flat warming. You hear that? That's the sound of a dying social life coughing up its last embers trying to reinstate itself.

This last week and a half, my life has gone from being the sort of waster that could take part in a competition for wasting only I wouldn't get there as I'd be too embedded on the sofa to leave, to suddenly becoming the sort of person who has to schedule in breathing into the diary or it just wouldn't happen. Once again, loving the busy, but bloody hate being busy. Yesterday appeared not to be busy at first glance and then, out of nowhere, things to do appeared like a very organised apparition. The sort of ghost who died in a filing cabinet. All the things were fun though. I had a casting, where, much like the usual schtick, I walked in, they glanced at me, made the decision there and then if I had the job, but still insisted on making me pull a series of faces until it felt like my cheeks had been kneaded by George Foreman. What I would prefer in the future is just to be told to piss off and not bother before they go through the ritual of making me feel like a chump on camera. Then I realised, maybe if you get the job straight away, they don't make you go through any of that and its their way of 'punishing' people who look wrong? I'm sure I will never know.

Then it was a journey to Stamford, a place that looks not dissimilar to a the contents of a snowglobe, for a gig that was really really great. Dull huh? 250 people, sold out, in a beautiful room, where every gag worked. Yawn, I hear you cry. Don't cry. But you are right. It dawned on me recently that I have read several autobiographies of several celebrities (Alec Guinness, Marlon Brando etc not Katie fucking Price or anyone like that) and everytime I get to the bit where things start going well I get bored and put the book down. We don't like that here. So out of respect for you, I'll stop talking about last night's gig now. If nice stuff continues to happen, I will either start making bad things up to keep you interested, just put up pictures of animals trapped in barbed wore or something similarly upsetting, or just quit writing altogether. Promise.

That's really it at the mo. The only other anomaly thats worth noting is that I've started drinking tomato juice. I'm not sure why and I'm fairly sure I hate it but I keep drinking it. I am putting this down to getting older and my tastebuds just completely deteriorating. Its why a couple of years ago I started enjoying blue cheese and can now occasionally drink ale without retching. I'm fine with this where it is, but I don't want it to continue down that path. I can see myself in a few years time eating capers from the jar and just sucking on lemons. I don't want these things. I often wonder if thats what happened to those performers that eat swords or the man who eat bicycles and light bulbs. I'm prepared to go past capers if I can eventually start knawing on someone's car.

Quick self-promotion type things:

There's new stuff on my website. Have a look! Also if you are Midlands based or in the Scotlands, then please check out the links on the front page to my shows in Leicester and Glasgow Comedy Festivals. It shall be much fun.


Secondly, for I will keep plugging this, please come along to this tomorrow. Thanks:


Friday, January 29, 2010

Fire Escape? Not Likely

More bullet points today. Sorry blog fans. I've been a busy bee. My entire week has been spent gathering pollen for the queen and it takes up quite a bit of time. Bees are pretty bloody busy. I often wonder if the reason why they're dying out is due to exhaustion. If only they had the standard 25 days off a year to go and chill in a sunflower or buzz around a field for a bit, then I reckon there'd be loads more of them. The UN should definitely get involved. Anyway, some words:


Its funny but I would think a gig is never promoted well when the man running it says 'yeah they're often a right bunch of cunts here.' I'm not sure about you, but phrases like that are never what I want to hear about any situation. Unless you are some sort of morbid and foul mouthed body part collector. If you are, I'm slightly worried that you read this blog. Please stop and put that leg down. Whilst the gig wasn't at all bad in the end, it was overshadowed slightly by the man appropriately called Dick who wouldn't stop shouting, the couple in the steamed up car outside, dogging like there was no tomorrow and most importantly, this:

Now, lets play a small spot what's wrong game with this picture. Have a little look. Anything? Maybe look towards the heavy padlock in the corner and then look at the sign on the door that's being padlocked. THEY'VE ONLY GONE AND PADLOCKED THE FIRE ESCAPE! It was like some large scale Kentish wicker man. For all I knew they were going to wait till we were all finished and set fire to the entire place while chanting some rugby song. They didn't. Instead some lovely work from Tom Rosenthal and Pat Burtscher and we all escaped relatively unscathed. By that I mean all our relatives are still fine. Oh god. I'll stop now.


If you're a twitterer and you're not already following @IraqEnquiryBlog then you should do now. I wish I'd been demonstrating along with many others this morning as Tony Blair entered the enquiry, but sadly I am useless and was asleep. I know that's not really good enough, but I am making do by watching it on all formats and tutting a lot everytime Tony Blair snakes his way out of a situation in a way that would make Voldemort gasp. There appears to be a lot of the ex-PM and all others involved getting 'confused' at what the UN had been telling them. Now, I am not someone who regularly reads UN briefings or law guidance but I'm fairly sure its not written in Klingon. It strikes me that people who are in these positions of power really should be able to fully understand interparlimentary laws and advice from those whose opinions matter, and yet over this last few days it hasn't appeared to be the case. I would suggest from now on all UN codes are printed in big picture books with large lettering and drawings so those conniving bastards like Blair have absolutely no excuse to get away with killing thousands of innocent people. I really really want him to accidentally slip up and just blurt out 'yeah I knew it was illegal but I don't care. hahahah dead iraqis and UK soldiers! Hahahah!' and then for him to be incarcerated for the rest of his smug grinning war mongering life. The fact that he's now middle eastern ambassador for peace is like Tiger Woods running a chastity society.


I used to be a master of line learning. I could pick up a script and like a thespian Johnny 5 I would get through it and relay line after line like a maverick. Its a clear sign of brain deterioration, but yesterday whilst doing rehearsal, I kept completely forgetting the lines straight after reading them. Its meant to be a rough read through type event, but I'm really going to try my best to have the whole thing in my head. Then again I don't trust the fact that I will learn the lines then on the day say them all the in the wrong order, forget my queues and generally balls it up. At least with a script I'll say things correctly whilst just looking hugely unprepared.

The play excerpt itself and I'm particularly enjoying playing my character Graeme who gets to use such words as 'wankquility' and rubs a mobile phone on his face pretending its a 'minge'. Should be much fun. If you're around on Sunday please come along. Its an ace event and there are excerpts from 8 different new plays. If enough people turn up the Pleasance will allow the event to keep happening and may even be nice enough to put it in their brochures. Also if you're interested in submitting a script to be performed then please do. All details are here:

And don't forget, I will be saying 'wankquility'.

I'm off to Stamford tonight. I swear I'm currently doing more miles than Mrs Davis.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

iPad Slag Acting

Some things:


So the iPad is now here. What does this mean? I'm not really sure. I've got a computer, I have an iPhone and an iPod. More importantly I have actual books and I can read newspapers. Why would I need an iPad? I really don't know, but goddamn I really want one. I want to walk around with it like I have a piece of the future in my hands and then say to people, 'hmm maybe I'll read a webbook or download Dickins to my face.' That last bit sounds very wrong. Not sure about the choice of name. I understand that Apple now have this 'i' thing locked down, but considering how futuristic its all getting we need some numbers like 6000 at the end of stuff, or names that sound like they could fight robots. The zapperbookfucker 6000 or something. iPad feels a bit like something you might have to use if you get a scratched cornea. Someone else said it's like a technological sanitary towel. 'What do you do with your film scripts McG when you don't have any plotline for them?' 'iPad'. etc etc. I'm sure in a few years time everyone will have one which they'll plug into their iShoes whilst eating iFood.


Last night a lady got upset with me because I called her and her bunch of friends 'slags'. This wasn't the most inventive thing I could have said and I realised that had I not been so lazy I could've said something a bit better to make the loud group of shouting irritating women shut up. However, it was in the heat of the moment and so I said 'slags'. Oddly comparing women to large heaps of metal makes them very sad. I explained the to woman that while I was sure they weren't slags, they were talking all the way through the acts and this was not good. Her response was not to apologise but to tell me that her friend had just recovered from cancer and it was her first night out. Hmm. Tough one. Its a tough one because while you want to have sympathy in these sorts of situations, having cancer doesn't mean you should shout all the way through other people's sets. If this theory was true then I wanted to say, 'I'm diabetic, does that mean I can run around punching children?' I'm not sure if that's really the same, but my brain was a little tired. I'm never sure how to say it to people, but while I feel sympathy for anyone who's gone through that, unless you have tourettes, constantly shouting out during a gig is purely behavior for arseholes. Just because you have an affliction, doesn't mean you stop being an arsehole. Just an arsehole with an affliction. It felt a little like I was about to enter an episode of Curb Your Enthusiasm. I didn't go any further with it. Instead I left out a line about cancer out of respect and thankfully they shut up and it all ended up being nice.


I'm going to do a script reading in an hour or two, as rehearsals for this Sunday's Scratch: An Itch Event at the Pleasance Theatre. The part I am playing is of a 'tall, Scottish man'. Never again will I complain about being typecast. I haven't learnt any of the lines, I have only read the script once and I have to leave early to go to Broadstairs. Essentially I am being hugely unhelpful to everyone. I think I will continue this trend by going to the cafe afterwards and ordering something that isnt on the menu then shouting 'don't you know who I am?' lots of times over. They won't know who I am. It will be embarrassing. But still, it will be two steps further to being a Hollywood star. I'm excited about acting again. I did loads of from the age of 6 when I kicked the arse out of being a statue in the Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, all the way through uni where I did plays such as the Real Inspector Hound and Bollocks. The best bit about plays is that people already write all the material for you, and if it doesn't get laughs its because your character isn't funny. Or because its a greek tragedy. Or because you can't act and its embarrassing.


I've never had kimchi before and as such, I will boldly say I probably haven't really lived properly. Yesterday, I went to my friend Louis' for lunch. He's a bit of a culinary genius and whipped up some severely good Korean food. But whilst his cooking was ace, the best stuff was a tiny pot of kimchi. Its merely cabbage with chilli and garlic and something else that may well be dodgy, but goddamn is it the best cabbage ever. I don't really have any jokes or comments about it. I merely want you all to know about it. Motherfrikkin' kimchi. I am very worried the ingredient I don't know is some sort of addictive drug.


That's where I'm going this eve. Sometimes I look at my gigs and think 'things are definitely going upwards careerwise'. Then I have a gig in Broadstairs. Still at least tomorrow's blog might be interesting.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Missing Vigilantes

When I don't really have time to write a blog it tends to be expressed in a few ways: a) I'll freely express in the blog that I don't have time to write a blog, b) I will cop out and only write a paragraph or two, c) I will cop out and just write some bullet points, d) I will just stick something I've drawn up (see Monday's blog). Now see if you can spot any of those signs today as a) I really don't have time to blog.

- Sometimes you hear people in cheesy dramas ask, 'where have all the heroes gone?' Well I have discovered the answer. They are all busy fighting crime. Last night, on our list of people that had booked tickets to Fat Tuesday, was one Mr Alessandro Vigilante. I dare say its one of the best surnames I've ever seen. I was keen to meet Mr Vigilante and hoped to chat to him during the show. Would he, like the computer game I've been playing, be dressed in white Italian medieval assassin's garb? Or perhaps a latex suit with logo? Or would he go for the trilby/long jacket look? I certainly didn't know, and I was very excited. Then he didn't show. I was hugely disheartened until I realised that he is probably somewhere saving lives and in which case I'm much happier he did that. Well done Mr Vigilante.

- Fat Tuesday sold out last night and was a lovely first gig of the season. I was looking forward to seeing Richard Herring's show Hitler Moustache as I hadn't seen it in Edinburgh and I heard it had changed a lot since he previewed it for us back in June. It was nothing less than awesome and I would highly highly recommend you to check out his tour dates either over the next two weeks at the Leicester Square theatre or when he travels around the country after that. All tour dates are at

- I bought tomato juice when we went shopping last week. I assumed that as I liked the odd bloody mary, I might also like tomato juice. I have just had a cup. I assumed wrong. It should only be on pasta or filled with vodka. It felt like drinking the cold remains of a tin of baked beans. I now have a whole carton of wrongness in my fridge.

- Tonight, I'm doing this: You should come. It'll be ace.

- There is also this on tonight which will also be ace: Invent a cloning machine and go to both. Hurry up.

That's really it for today. Rubbish huh? It's all because today is filled with meetings and gigs and before that I'm going to my friend Louis' for lunch. Last time I had lunch at Louis' house was over a year ago. See here:

Now read that and pretend I wrote a full blog. Boom. I'm the master of distraction. Oh no! Who's come to thwart my plans! Mr. Vigilante! I'll get you next time!

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

My News Review

Well that's it then. The recession is officially over according to the news. Well done everyone. All you who've been made unemployed, you can go back to work now. Yep that's fine. All of you who have had entire businesses collapse, yeah just start then again, it'll be dandy. I'll stop being poor before it gets unfashionable again and then maybe we can have all our money back from RBS and the other banks and tube fares, taxes and VAT can go down. That's how it happens isn't it? No? What do you mean inflation is rising and taxes will rise whoever gets in government? Oh. That's not really very fair at all. I'll have the recession back then please. Thankyou.

Maybe this is why the terror alert went up? Out of fear that despite the economy getting better, us broke peoples will just get increasingly more poor until David Cameron stomps over the country in some rich boots like a public school educated Godzilla. I honestly don't know what to make of this last week of news. Terror alerts, end of recession and a general election in May, it seems as though the snow was just delaying a horde of other important things that have all defrosted and launched themselves on the public in one week. Here's my immensely quick view on it all from a man that doesn't really understand any of it:

Terror Alert - Without meaning to sound hugely cynical, its odd that the terror alert has gone up the very week Blair is being interrogated for killing Iraqis illegally. Not by any means am I suggesting its a wonderful 'hey look over there' ruse to distract us while Blair says 'yep I'm a terrible human being but no one cares because they are all hiding in bomb shelters' and then he can dance away like a big grinning pixie of middle eastern hate, but it probably is. All recent terror attacks have been thwarted to the level where airport security now have to look in everyone's pants. Not only that but although we've had recent messages from Osama Bin Laden, the news fails to report that he's on a kidney dialysis machine, so I can't imagine he's that hard to find. Look for a cave with sufficient electricity surges to keep a man alive and your there. If that doesn't work then try checking through HMV's sales reports and find the only person in the world that still buys C-90 tapes and you'll have him. Taking all this as evidence, I'm really not scared about terrorist attacks, I'm slightly more terrified that an ex-PM will ride off scot free* from years of massacre because we are slightly worried someone will try and inject their knob on public transport again.

The End of Recession - See above. Its not over till I can buy a coffee in a chain establishment without spluttering 'how much?', scrabbling at the pennies in my pocket and crying into my hands.

General Election - I like the way its called a general election. I often wonder if that's why people don't bother voting in it. If it was called the 'big bloody important election' then people might take note. Well now its revealed that its on May 6th we can enjoy several months of TV ads and billboards where New Tories and the Conservalabour tell each other how alike they are and why don't they just hold hands and privatise the country together. Still though, us lefties (I do count myself as one despite my lack of knowledge on it all) will adamantly not vote Tories because, despite only being a child at the time, I remember the 80s and when Thatcher took the milk away from the schools and the miners crying on telly. Cameron looks shinier than Thatcher but once he gets the seat of power it will affect him like Gollum with the ring and his face will shrivel up until it reveals his true evil. So I'll want to vote for Green or someone else but will realise its futile to vote for anyone but Labour in order to stop the Tories and the BNP and then ultimately things will stay the same and we'll all continue to be unhappy. Or the Tories will get in and we'll all continue to be unhappy. Lets face it, unhappiness looms unless the entire country can all band together and vote Monster Raving Looney Party. They once said that as well as hot and cold taps in every house there would be a custard and jelly tap. That's a sure fire winner.

I'm now going to ignore news and get on with my day before I decide to emigrate to an island where democracy doesn't exist and I can be king by finding the biggest stone.

For Londoners:

Fat Tuesday is sold out tonight. You didn't need to know that, but I like telling everyone. It makes me feel smug. All the line-ups till June are up on if you want a peek. Also I'm doing the brilliant SO Comedy night tomorrow should you fancy coming along. See here for info (if Facebook stops being broken):

For non-Londoners:

Why are you still reading? There's nothing for you here. Go on. Scram. Scram. Before I start waving my stick at you! Right, you asked for it. *waves stick*

* Scot Free - definition. Free from all Scottish people. Thats the sort of racist Blair is and why he can't go near Brown anymore.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Rude Names and Cartoons

Late and rather brief blog today as I have spent most of the morning sitting in a casting with Tom Craine, surrounded by other short hairy men like myself and other tall thin men like Craine. Sometimes I view these days as opportunities to see ourselves in a parallel universe. Perhaps 6 billion and a half light years away, passing through some sort of time reality shufty (that's the official scientific term), one of those other hairy dudes does jokes about being diabetic on stage, whereas I spend time going to castings, doing them properly and maybe actually getting the job. Sadly, as it is, I tend to turn up, be confused, be confused infront of a casting director, leave, dignity no longer in tact, go home, wonder why I got up early. Still fingers crossed maybe this one will be the one that means I can look like a well filmed twat.

Last night's gig was so stupidly lovely that there is little to say. It took me ages to find it, because, and I was told this without a hint of irony, but the neon sign saying 'The Electric Theatre' was broken, but when finally there it was much much fun. On the wall by the box office was a list of names and pictures of members of the cast of 'Arabian Nights: The Panto'. I spent time trying to take a picture of a woman who was playing the part of 'Brat'. I thought it would be funny to post a picture of her face, name and then 'Brat' with the simple tagline 'Bit harsh'. However, while doing this I was receiving some very odd looks from the theatre staff. Why was this tiny man taking pictures of pictures of other peoples faces? Creepy and odd all at once. So I took the pic, sent the tweet and backed away with embarrassment. Sadly as I did this I noticed the picture of a pretty young blonde woman who had the most unfortunate name combined with the most unfortunate character name, making her one large euphemism for oral sex. I wasn't able to take the pic as the stares from the ushers drove me away, but the childish me regrets it consistantly. Instead, just scroll down this page till you find the character of the camel and the cast member playing it that isn't the one called Sarah. I can't be any more obvious than that:

That's it for today. I'm a busy T. So instead, for all youse who don't twitter or facebook and won't have seen these before, here are my two latest cartoons. One new Dave one and one from my brain. There will soon be a webpage on my site that has all of them which will look all fancy. Till then, enjoy:



Sunday, January 24, 2010

The Sad Plight of the Heckler

Today's blog isn't funny. Sadly though, it is true. Maybe play some violin music in the background, imagine everything in black and white and then have a little cry. Or alternatively if you're the sort of person who mocks the weak, then why not play circus music and read this whilst doing jazz hands and making cow noises. I'm not sure why, I'm just trying to cater for every crowd.

Sometimes hecklers aren't bad. Sometimes, despite the fact that they might appear malicious, say nasty things, and irritate the rest of the audience, they aren't evil people. Last night, a really fat man called Greg proved that sometimes hecklers are just sad, sad lonely people. Arriving with a friend of one of the acts (Julia Clark who was brilliant) he had previously stated that he would heckle the acts and sat in the 3rd row looking ready for banter. I spoke to him in the first section and his flame of vitriol didn't even spark before I had moved onto speaking to someone else. He visibly slumped in his chair seeming sad. Then when the second section started he had moved to the front row, by himself. The front row was entirely empty on the left side and so this large bulk of a man sitting there was hard to miss, both visually and if I was to aim something at him. I did 15 minutes of material and towards the end of that, I made some comments about my height, as I am prone to do. Greg, after much thought, for you could hear his brain cogs whirring for some time, said 'I bet you like escalators though?'

I replied by saying 'What do you mean? I do, because it means I don't have to walk up stairs. Looking at you I'd assume you love them too.' This immediately threw him off and he mumbled that I like them because it means I can 'smell tall men's arses on the way up' and then just kept repeating 'you like the smell you do'. It was a very poor attempt at heckling, made worse by its length and having to explain what it meant. Greg knew this as he said it and his head sunk as far as it could considering the size of his neck. I was about to launch into a retort of telling him that Shakespeare said 'Brevity is the key to wit' and then call him a 'big fat prick', but something stopped me. I think it was the fact that the entire room was looking at him with confusion and pity, and his friends were just staring at him like he'd suffered from incontinence and announced it to the world. I very gently explained to him why he was rubbish and why he should stop speaking, and he did. Then Julia came on stage and he interrupted her twice, which she aptly dealt with by telling everyone that her friend had pre-warned that he might heckle, making him look like an even sadder beast. We all treated him like a child having a tantrum. By the third section he was still sitting there. I asked him why and he said his friends wouldn't let him sit with them anymore. I actually felt sorry for him. Not much though. Just a bit.

I almost think we should have some sort of charity for these people. Those who want to speak out and be part of it all but are just rubbish. Maybe we could all chip in and they could do their own show in a small community centre somewhere. I would watch but would only heckle right at the start to make them feel uneasy for the rest of the show. Then I would sit at the front and stare. I reckon it would do them a world of good. These people can be saved. Or failing that, do as they did last night and just banish them from your social groups. I asked if anyone else wanted to take Greg home with them last night and they all said no. I can only assume he will now be exiled from Bromley for some time. Which might not be that bad.

Just a quick blog today for I be drawing more things and doing stuff, then off to Guildford tonight to a place called the Electric Theatre. I've never been in an electric theatre before. I assume we can't start till they've plugged it in. Before this blog endeth, here be the latest radio show from West Country rapscallion Tom Craine, where he is joined by - who would've guessed it - me! We speak on breakfasts, made up games and why Pixie Lott is my wife. Its much funnier than today's blog. Enjoy:


Saturday, January 23, 2010

Still My Bloody Space

I'm currently racking my brains for ways in which potato waffles are indeed 'waffley versatile'. So far I reckon that as well as a food substance, they could be used as a tony portcullis for a breakfast based castle, as a fencing mask for someone with a tiny face, or maybe even as tiny windows for potato houses. Or a climbing frame for worms. Ultimately, they are just waffles and I feel once again let down by advertising lies. I stopped popping my corn after only a few bowls of Corn Poppers, and I'm still disturbed that when I'm drinking Ribena its the squished blood of tiny Ribena berries. Advertisers should think about idiots like me when they make slogans.

What I will be spending most of my day doing, once I've put waffles through a series of versatility tests (what about sticking two together to make your own variation of Kanye West's specs?), is trying to finally delete my myspace account. It just doesn't want to die. I click 'delete account'. It says it'll send me an email which I will have to click to properly delete my account. It doesn't send me any emails. I believe this is its own bizarre method of survival. Its time is up. It knows that. Tom knows that. From his little mansion where he used to cackle thinking that he always had the most friends out of anyone else, finally achieving his childhood dream of popularity - a far cry from the school yard torments he actually received as chubby boy who ate his own bogeys and wet himself in class. Yet that dream has now burst. People have realised that actually myspace is hugely primitive.

There are possibly people reading this blog now who don't even know what it is. Well you know facebook and Twitter and all those things? They started many moons ago with the creation of myspace. It was designed in medieval times so that knights could post just how the crusades are going whilst decorating their page in the garish colours of their king's flag, and using new fangled speak with lots of z's and x's in, such as 'thanxz'. Bards then ursurped it to play people their songs of old, even when people didn't want to hear their songs of old and the scroll would take so long to load that the song would play for a long time before you could close the scroll. Finally wenches and minions from Spamalot started to discover they could destroy myspace, or as it was called then, thyspace, by covering everyone's walls in messages to check out their 'chuuuunes' (which no one ever really knew what it meant) or to 'click to c my sexi pix thanx'.

We've hugely surpassed it now. What with facebook allowing all those people I really hated at school, and loads of people I dont know and are slightly scary to find and get in touch with me and tell me to get chickens for my Farmville farm or do a poll to see who actually gives much of a fuck about anything except avoiding doing their day job or having real friends. Then you've got Twitter, which has reduced everything back to basics and doesn't use the sort of headache inducing colours to do so. So Tom needs to retire. Or at least let my page die please. If I can't get the email I need, I will send myspace some threatening messages and eventually resort to going to the shops and buying super strength myspace killer spray. Or maybe you could all just report my page for racism/pornography/spam? Any of you fancy doing that? That'd be ace. I've never more wanted to be unfairly framed for illegal activities. I bet even then they're so desperate for people to stay that they'd tell me to 'link up with other sex offenders/kkk members and why not use myspace IM to chat about your illegal activities?'

They could also be used as snowshoes for weasles. Dammit. This is really going to ruin my day.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Willing Agoraphobe

Its a Friday, its raining, there is very little want to do anything at all. Unfortunately today is the day I start regularly gigging again. Its odd. I should be excited and looking forward to it all but I think I have managed to become some sort of wiling agrophobic. Here are the facts: My flat is warm; I can wear pajamas around my flat without people looking at me weirdly; there is an Xbox in my flat. Then I compare this to any gigs, but most importantly, the one I have to do tonight and it doesn't really bare up: The gig might not be warm; If I wear my pajamas to the gig people will probably think I'm weird; the gig will not have an Xbox in it. Essentially it gives me very little reason to want to do the gig.

More importantly than any of these, I feel pretty rusty. I've only had 6 gigs since Christmas and I was able to do at least 5 minutes on the snow for each of those. Now it's not snowing anymore, what on earth am I going to talk about? Should probably watch the news or write some jokes I guess. Dear oh dear its all so very stressful isn't it? No, no its not. I am just massively lazy at the moment. Tonight's show is in Kings Lynn, which isn't that far away but is far enough to be annoying to drive to on a Friday. I think that's part of my resentment for having to leave my flat. Its not just going to a gig, its throwing myself headfirst in the shitstorm that is Friday night traffic. Everyone is so eager to get home that they make it take longer to get home. One day people will work it out and they'll all just stay at work for hours and hours so that I can drive to my gigs on clear roads. Not that I'm being selfish or anything. But I am being selfish.

Only a few hours till I have to leave and this time today shall be spent working, once again, on sponsorship letters for Edinburgh festival funding. I have to decide within the next four weeks, whether or not I'm doing another show at the fringe. Here's the cut. I want to do a show. I really really do and I've started writing it and everything. However, unless about £7k falls out of the sky and into my lap, I actually can't do a show. So I'm going to write to lots of rich people. I've tried sponsorship letters before but to companies and not to rich folk, so I'm not sure how to do it. I'm tempted to just write 'Oi, you've got so much dosh you could sneeze £7k my way and not notice so sort it out yeah?' but they might think I'm a ruffian. Instead I'm going to try and be charming and write nice things. Failing that I will cut lots of letters of newspapers, stick them into sentences with my blood and threaten their family.

Other possible options include kidnapping someone and demanding a ransom, robbing a bank or selling everything someone else owns. I like this last option. My only issue with it is that I have to get all of someone else's stuff without them noticing, and then not be around at all after I sell it. What if I choose someone who only has crap stuff? So many issues. So little time. If any of you have any actual good ideas as to how I can go to Edinburgh this year, then please let me know.

As its Friday I feel I should shamelessly promote somethings. I know many of you will re-read that wondering just where the link between those two things is. Is it some ancient self-promotion Friday tradition? Will it help us towards the weekend seeing you shamelessly self promote? Neither of those. I'm just doing it because I'm hella cool. Basically, whether I'm Edinburghing or not, I'm writing a new show and I'm doing previews of it at several festivals in the next few months. So here's the details of those:

Leicester Comedy Festival - Feb 21st, 7pm at Bowies

Glasgow Comedy Festival - March 13th, 8.30pm at The Buff Club

And I'll be at the Brighton Fringe Festival too on 6th and 7th of May. Details of that to follow soon.

Lastly, watch this. Its clearly going to be the comedy film of the year. I heart Chris Morris:


Thursday, January 21, 2010

You're Gonna Have To Trust Me

When driving home on the ever boring M4 last night, Tom Craine and myself were discussing the only aspect of missing a 9-5. It sounds bizarre that there should be any part of the general drudgery of day to day boredom, waking up early and being shouted at by management who spend most of their days wondering if their life will ever contain any enjoyments, realising it won't and then deciding to take it out on their staff, but there is. This one tiny weeny bit, that Tom pointed out, is having Fridays and weekends to yourself. It might sound odd, as you will know from all my blogging and the fact I clearly have enough time to write this everyday, that self-employed comedians have a lot of down time. You will all have gathered that I wake up late and often, especially Mondays to Wednesdays, not have to gig, or even remotely leave my flat. But while this might all seem like I am a huge dosser - and I will not by any means deter that view of me from you - when I am not working, I spend every single moment feeling guilty that I should be.

This, apart from the constant poverty, is the mega downside to self-employment. If I hadn't spent a day playing Xbox, then I could've worked more on my sitcom/show/comic strips/sketches that may be the ones to get me further in my career. If I didn't spend that last 3 hours on Twitter debating just how the appearance of Jedward and Vanilla Ice on the National Television Awards last night had almost caused my eyes and ears to implode in an attempt at saving me, in a biological self sacrifice, then I may have written the best gag I could ever have written. So technically, you are never not working, or at least never not thinking about working, unlike many jobs, where Friday to Sunday is pure free time. Apart from that bit on Sunday night where you are filled with dread about Monday, and wish you were self-employed. And sometimes just sometimes, I miss that 2 days and one night of not thinking about work. And that is why I think my job is very similar to that of Jack Bauer's.

I started season 8 of 24 last night. I won't give any spoilers for those that haven't yet seen it, but essentially its the old cliched thing of the man that's wants to give up the job but is too committed to the truth and justice and those other things American's bang on about. Really Bauer has been through so much that in any real situation he'd have been given some large wads of dosh and go and live on an island somewhere in the Med, while all his previous injuries have given him shingles and problems walking, with such mental scarring that he wakes up at night screaming. But no, not in 24. In 24 he is all too ready to risk his neck against terrorists, whilst battling with ignorant authority just to make sure the president isn't attacked for the umpteenth time. I sat through episodes 1 and 2 last night with the eye of a cynic. By that I mean my eye, being cynical. I hadn't carved out AA Gill's right eye and popped it on the sofa next to me, though god knows it would serve him right for that incident with the baboon.

I was saying out loud about how cliched this and that character was, how terrible that plotline was, and yet when it got to the end I immediately got annoyed I didn't have 3 and 4 ready to go and I now know that another few months of my life will be spent concerned about CTU's top man. His days really do get longer and longer and I just hope that at the end of this series he will actually die. Partly to give the character some respite and partly to give me some too. Then I can finally stop watching and get on with some work that I should be doing. I really would. Promise. You're gonna have to trust me.

I shall leave you with this today. I saw @helenstone post it on Twitter earlier and got pretty excited. My brother's already heard the album due to his musicness and he says its ace. I truly think Albarn is a legend of many things.


Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Morning Has Broken

I understand the phrase 'morning has broken' now. We used to sing a hymn about it at school and its finally dawned (pun intended) as to what it means. The morning is cold, dark and full of grumpy people. I can only assume its broken and that back when it worked it was much nicer. However I'm up now (9.07am) and so I'm having to deal with it. Before any of you kick up a fuss and complain that you are up 6 hours earlier every day, I have taken note. However try doing it when you don't get up that regularly and you realise just what a shitter it is. Its like if you sit in a smelly house for ages, its only when you go out and come back in you realise the stench and see that the cats have shat everywhere. Sort of.

I'm up early today because I have 6 trillion things to do. That's an exact figure and everything. It'll take longer than today, I'll be honest. These 6 trillion things involve a casting type thing this morning followed by heading to Bristol to do Tom Craine's radio show with him again which is much fun. Although Bristol is the only place in the whole UK that appears to still be snowy. I'm almost certain I'm some sort of snow chaser, which sounds less like a weather obsessive than a coke addict. So, taking all those things into consideration, this is a non-blog, and rather than make myself late for any of these things I will just leave you with this to enjoy:


Oh and also, big thanks to @mattscutt who made this! Awesome!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Butter Me Up

News about what food is good and isn't good for us is really tiresome. Every single week it appears there's a new scare that carrots cause your face to disintegrate or too many cashew nuts make your spleen explode. Generally its not something I pay attention to and anyone who has seen my substantial gut will know that I tend to eat what I like. However, this isn't to say I'm not influenced by whatever hype is currently pumped into my brain via the news tube and yesterday's news about butter got me a tad worried. I bloody love butter. Its a bit brilliant. I will quite happily eat toast with nothing but butter on it. Its a pretty versatile food source working as a spread, a cooking oil, a culinary play-do (if its cold enough you can mold small lurpak men from it), a lube (as shown in Last Tango in Paris) and if you cover a stone floor in it, a slippy death trap. How can it not be ace?

I used to be a margarine fan, on account of it being healthier and more spreadable, but then I was informed that margarine is full of evil things and all the saturated fats that are contained within marg actually end up being worse for you than the pure butter stuff. I was told this by all sorts of websites, clever people and my nan. My nan knows things. So I swapped marg for butter and have been chomping away assuming I shall now be all fine. Then Shyam Kolvekar said in the news yesterday that he wants butter banned due to its contributing factor in heart disease. Bollocks. I'll be honest, I don't know who he is, or how important his opinion is, but it was on BBC Breakfast so I paid attention. I find Bill Turnbull has a way of making things seem important in the same way Kate Silverton has a way of constantly looking like a poor man's Natasia Kaplinsky.

The cholesterol thing worries me as last time I went to the GP's I was told I have 'really good cholesterol levels for a normal person but not for someone with diabetes'. I asked him what on earth this meant and he explained that I have a history of heart disease. I told him I didn't. He disagreed. I then checked with my family and no one, ever ever in our family, has ever had heart disease. At my hospital they also told me my cholesterol level was fine. On speaking the GP again at the clinic he completely ignored me and prescribed me cholesterol tablets. This appears to be the way he operates, on a purely 'NHS statistics' level. I assume he gets a nice little paycheck for these tablets in the same way he wants me to have a blood test right after Christmas, when my diabetic blood sugars will be all hugely wrong. So as a stand against him, I have refused to do either. Take that doctor head! But while this feels rebellious on one level, the other part of me is constantly worried that he's right and I'm just signing my death wish.

So I have spent much of the last 48 hours having a mediocre middle class crisis as to just what to spread on my bread that won't kill me. Some sort of low-fat, soya based spread? Then if you research that it contains things that possibly contribute to cancer. How about the ones that are meant to be good for your heart? They'll eventually turn half your body into a cyborg and you'll turn to human flesh for sustenance. Or something. Cyanide doesn't have any saturated fats in it. Maybe that'd be better than any of them. And then after all that stress I read that Shyam Kolvekar had made the statement via the same press office as Unilever who are in charge of Flora which makes all those hardcore butter eaters scoff and say 'well he would say that then'. Who knows? I, most certainly don't. I do know that Last Tango in Paris would've seemed odd if he'd pulled out the Flora though and so in memory of Brando I'll eat butter on toast for at least another few days till someone tells me toast makes your brain melt.

Last quick non-butter related note: I went to watch, as a punter type, the London Comedy Improv night last night at the Pigalle in Picadilly Circus. It was another brilliant evening and I highly recommend joining their FB group or following them on twitter @LondonImprov, if only in the hope you'll see them do a news article entitled 'Pope Kills Again' again.


Monday, January 18, 2010

Twerrorism Chat Pooh

Once again, today is filled with many things I should be doing and due to some bad planning I'm doing this blog far too late in the day which means it'll be a tad rushed. Not that they aren't always a tad rushed, hence misspellings, grammatical errors or simply paragraphs of the sort of literature you would find were some of those million monkeys with a million typewriters given laptops with word to try and speed things up. The ideal, every day, is for me to get up, have some brekkie, do one of those sort of laughs at This Morning that you might see on a cheesy American 70s sitcom - you know, that kind of warm 'ha!' that says 'while that wasn't funny, it was hugely endearing - and then write my blog before the day progresses. This means I've written stuff before I have to write stuff and the day can roll forwards like a fat man who's fallen over on one of those airport moving walkways. Slightly off subject, that's reminded me, please if anyone who reads this blog does sports commentary of any kind, can you, when commentating on football, one day say the line (when appropriate): 'Oooh! That went wide like the fat man it is.' Thanks. Now for some small bits of thinking. Or bits of small thinking. Take your pick:


I saw bits about a man being arrested for his joke tweet spaffing round the Twittersphere yesterday and it all became a tad more clear when I saw this today:


Now, it doesn't need me to say how ridiculous this is, but this is pretty ridiculous. Is there really that little terrorist activity to keep the police busy that they have to waste valuable time and energy on something that was clearly a joke. Last time I checked, terrorists weren't Twittering their terrorism plans. Far from me to guess these sorts of things, as I am by no means an expert, and nor do I follow @AlQaeda, despite how brilliant I've heard their tweets are (please note coppers, that bits a gag), but I'm fairly sure it would be a bit of an own goal to start blabbing about your aerial bombing plans across a social networking site.

I'm not going to rubbish the 'making jokes about bombs' bit. In an ideal world, airport security staff would know when people are being 'hilarious' or serious, but while the current ever constant state of high 'lets-induce-fear-on-the-masses-to-gain-constant-control-of-fucking-everything' level of alert is around, it takes a small amount of common sense not to walk up to the check in desk and spout about whether or not you 'remembered to pack the C4' for a laugh. Last summer me and Layla were held up for ages on a plane from Spain because some complete dick had joked that he had a gun on him. He was neither funny, nor was it funny making everyone wait for him when after scanning him and realising he was a dick, they still kept us grounded until he was taken into custody. Not our fault. I didn't make the joke, and if I had, it would've been better than that.

But that man said it out loud, not days after whilst not even close to the airport and online. It suddenly makes you think just how safe any of our online activities are, and rings a tad of the Thought Police, especially when some people are dull enough to tweet every thought they have. Some police type out there will know what everyone's had for breakfast or their thoughts on Glee. My worry is things like last night's #twitterbrawl (check the hashtag on twitter for an hour of mayhem fun) might now instigate me as some sort of riot organiser, instead of merriment hobbit as I am. I fear that next time I go through security at an airport they will not only x-ray all my stuff, ask all the questions, but then possibly keep me there for 2 hours while they read back through my blogs incase I've posted any secret codes, check back through my tweets and facebook statuses before looking through my iTunes choices. They'll find Rage Against The Machine 'Louder Than A Bomb' and arrest me incase I try to shout a plane down from the sky. Of course, what do I know? Well I know that maybe we should all start a campaign where we all tweet how we plan to blow up and destroy everything until the police are forced to arrest everyone on Twitter. Except Stephen Fry, he's on twabbatical.


I've asked people online today for the most inane chats they've had or heard at work. This is entirely selfish as I'm in the process of writing something and need such input, but having not been in an office environment for some years, I don't remember any of them that I had or overheard. I know there were a lot, but I, in a constant hatred against being in an employment situation doing work that people with lobotomies could do in 10 minutes, managed to block them out. I would find every possible loop hole in order to listen to my headphones or zone out and act weird so no one would engage me in conversation. Even when I worked in a restaurant I would spend time doodling pictures of talking whales which often meant most of the other staff just wouldn't bother.

The only insane conversations I had were when working in a housing association call centre as my first proper job out of uni. As we dealt with building repairs, I would often be on the receiving end of abuse from the most insane of tenants, some with drugs or booze problems and several that just liked shouting more than Kanye West liked Beyonce's video. One of the worst ones ever was when a man rang up with no heating. Taking a leaf out of @Liza_Butterfly's excellent blog HERE, here's a little transcript of what I said.

CALLER: (sounding like a very timid elderly man) My heating's broken and I'm very very cold.

ME: Right, ok, well we can send someone out to look at your boiler tomorrow. What time would be best?

CALLER: I can't do tomorrow. I'm going into hospital. They're going to cut off my leg. I'm going to lose a leg. Do you understand. (sounds like he's going to start crying).

ME: Oh. Ok. Well do you have someone that could be there so it can be fixed for when you get back?

CALLER: (actually crying) It's because I can't feel it anymore. So they're going to take it away. Do you see? Unless I get better they'll take the other one too.

ME: Oh. Well I suppose look on the bright side. It'll be less to heat.

CALLER: (more crying)

ME: (Realising last comment was hugely innapropriate). Well why don't you call us when you get back and we'll endevour to fix it as quickly as possible for you and make you a priority case?

CALLER: Ok. Thank you.

ME; Hope it all goes ok. (Again, it won't. He's having his leg cut off). Bye.

(CALLER hangs up)

I lasted nearly two years in that job. I really don't know how.


It's Winnie The Pooh Day today! This is based on A.A.Milne's birthday and we are to celebrate by hanging around with tiny pigs all day, throwing sticks in rivers and finding the most miserable donkeys ever and watch them dangle dangerously close to suicide. I used to, and still love Winnie The Pooh. Not the actual bear, he's a bit of a bumbling dick. Nor Piglet, who I'm fairly sure has a backstory where he was born prematurely and was never going to grow much. No, its because of Tigger and Eeyore who are two of the most amazing creations ever. Tigger's energy and attitude may drive people insane, but he's the sort of character I could imagine seeing drunk, late night on the tube, keeping others entertained while not harassing them. Just bouncing around and eventually injuring himself, only to be captured on youtube and become a sensation.

The Tigger Movie is the saddest film ever. If you haven't seen it, be wary. Its worse than The Road (the book, I am yet to see the film. I'm trying to persuade Layla its a romcom so we can go), in levels of misery. Tigger discovers he is the only Tigger and gets depressed. Pooh and the others think it would be nice to all dress up as Tiggers and hold a family reunion to make him think he has family. Of course this goes wrong and Tigger's hopes are massively dashed as he realises his friends are just seriously cruel bastards that love giving each other false pretenses when at their lowest then really kicking them while down. Horrible. The Tigger leaves and gets even more sad. I don't remember what happens then as I had to go and drink sugary drinks till I could smile again.

Eeyore is even better than Tigger because of phrases like this:

"It's snowing still," said Eeyore gloomily.
"So it is."
"And freezing."
"Is it?"
"Yes," said Eeyore. "However," he said, brightening up a little, "we haven't had an earthquake lately."

If only more people thought like that, then High School Musical would never have been made.


I'm going to this tonight, with Mr Douieb Sr (ie my dad), and its gonna be awesome. Come and along and hang out with the Douiebs. The Christmas one was brilliant and I'm looking forward to being an audience member and shouting the sort of suggestions I was praying I hadn't been given when I did it.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Tyred Out

Ding Dong! Whats that? Did someone ring the man bell? I believe they did and thats why me, a man, with my man bits and man hands, attempted to change a tyre this morning and put the spare on our car. Now some of you, including some women, may be thinking 'its not that manly changing a tyre, I can do it', but ask yourself, can you though? Or do you just call a little man in a jumpsuit to come along and do it all for you? Do you huh? I bet you do. Because that's what I have to do, after my hugely failed attempt. Yes, let me just cash in my cock and balls here and undo any man status I may have had. In my defence, the only reason I couldn't change the tyre is because the bolts on the flat were put on in the a garage with one of those automatic electrical bolt things that means even the Hulk would get a hernia trying to loosen them. Actually that's not true. The Hulk's hands are rather large which would cause him difficulty in removing fiddly bolts anyway and he'd probably just tear the tyre off, throw it at someone and then jump around smashing things. This is why the Hulk no longer works at Kwick Fit.

I did try to defy the laws of industrial bolt tighteners, by attaching the spider (technical term, not an actual spider, as that wouldn't work) to one end of the bolt and actually standing on the other end to turn it with my entire body weight (see an actual spider would be crushed by now) and it still didn't work. My dad came round with some WD40 and a special spider cross type thing (also a technical term) and he still couldn't do it. This is bad as my dad knows things about cars and once changed a tyre in pitch black darkness in Italy, and once fixed a thingy in an engine with a thingy. I honestly don't understand what he means but I've heard the story from three different people so I know its true. So instead he complained about stupid industrial bolt tighteners and so did I and we've had to get a man in a jumpsuit to come round in the week and do it instead, while I mosey around in the background like an ex-man. Not an X-Man, that'd be fine and would probably have helped me slice off/laser off/throw a playing card at the tyre in the first place. Hmm. Lots of comic book references today. Perhaps in my failed attempts at car fixery, geekness has shone through.

That is entirely why they do these sort of things. I have, in the past, complained about our car's headlights on this blog before, as the bulbs are fitted in a casing that you need a special whojimmywhatsit to take it off and only garage men have this whojimmywhatsit and change the bulb in seconds whilst smirking. I could do it if I had the whojmmywhatsit, in the same why I could change the tyre if I had a special bolt thingy. Essentially smarmy tool makers are making me appear shit. Although to be hugely fair to them, I've only ever changed a tyre once, when my dad was showing me how many years ago, and if I had removed the bolts there is nothing to say I then would've put the jack in the wrong place, broken the car in two and then dropped a tyre on my foot. Luckily, everyone is under the assumption I would've done it fine and those smarmy tool makers have probably actually saved my dignity a tad. Thanks smarmy tool makers.

Now all I need is for them to make jar lids that definitely can't be opened unless I take them to a special man in a shop and for all shelves to have a special lock that means you can't put them into a wall without them exploding, unless someone with a special DIY kit turns up and does it for you. Then and only then, will my manhood be entirely safe.

Oh and in some sort of feeble attempt at redemption, if you are a twitterer, I'm going to start a #twitterbrawl at 8pm tonight (GMT). Please join in. I am going for old fashioned Western brawl here, so chairs must be thrown, dames must kick someone while holding their skirt and a drunk man must fall over despite not being hit. If you aren't a twitterer, replace this paragraph with some favourite music of your choice or perhaps a topic of conversation you feel may just help you out at that important swaree.

Saturday, January 16, 2010


I was saddened to learn yesterday on the news that hundreds of teenagers are jeopardising their careers by only having an 800 word vocabulary. I say saddened, but if this comedy lark ever goes wrong, it does mean there'll be more job vacancies around for people like me who can talk properly, which is helpful. 800 words though? And that's it? How can you not like words? Words are brilliant. For example: plinth, rotund, spasmodical. Didn't you enjoy that? I bet you did. I love finding new words and yesterday I learnt the word 'spurtle', which is a word specifically for a tool that's used to stir porridge. Amazing. I bet teenagers don't even have a word for porridge. Here's the article:

I'd be curious to speak with someone who only knows 800 words though, just to see exactly what substitutes other words. There are only so many 'but's, 'yeah's and 'no's you can put into a sentence before it sounds less like talking and more like a beatbox from someone with a severe stutter. No wonder kids are supposedly stabbing each other and getting each other pregnant too early, its because they keep thinking they're saying other things to each other. Two no's probably means a yes and vice versa.
'No, no no no no , but yeah yeah yeah, no no no.' Ah! Maybe its morse code? Perhaps we've been looking at it all wrong? Maybe its far more intelligent than we ever thought! I doubt it though. I also hope that despite what the Telegraph says, it'd be great if the 800 words they did use included some proper doozies (yeah I used that term) such as dacnomania and mellifluous. I hope we can bring back the importance of words. Today I'm doing Comedy 4 Kids and I'm going to make a point of teaching all the kids some important new words, starting with 'spurtle'.

Last night I did a 10 spot for a big club chain that I currently don't work for. Despite having a few try outs for them in the past I've never really pursued it as I've always had this gut feeling that I wouldn't really enjoy it. Its so very rare I'd do a free open spot for anyone now, but with nothing else in for yesterday and a longing for some gigs that pay me well on a regular basis, I did it. It was amazing how quickly I was proved right. Not so much the venue, which is a great venue, nor the people, who seemed like a nice crowd with a notable absence of hen and stag do's. No, sadly, it was the other acts. I will not name anyone in particular but the compere made a grand job of making the audience feel insecure by calling them all cunts and picking on a few of them in a personal manner that was past the borderline between 'bullying' and 'Guantanamo psychological torture'. Its this sort of compereing that has ensured, over the years, that audiences don't like sitting at the front. It also encourages heckling and bravado as the only way to challenge this display of machismo. I can't stand it and I think when you watch someone like Greg Davies or Russell Kane compere a big club, you notice just how much of a difference being friendly makes. Suddenly people relax, they feel more prepared to laugh they open up a bit. I mean really, in what other job can you act that way to people you've just met? Only prison warden possibly. I say be all nice, and then if you need to be vicious, you can bring it on as and when like a silent heckle assassin. That's what I class myself as anyway. Along with beverage heretic and master of sitting.

Then the acts that followed said lines such as 'I'm African, and I know what you're thinking, how come if I'm African, I'm wearing clothes?' This made me cringe to the point of pulling a muscle, especially as the lone laugh of one man gut roared over the crowd above nothing else. When I eventually walked on, the audience were fairly non-plussed about it all and I couldn't really give a shit about my set so just ploughed through. It didn't go badly, it didn't go great, I just felt rather cold about it all and spent the whole 10 minutes with visions of my dinner at home to keep me going. I even ended on a line I knew they wouldn't like, on purpose. I'll wait and see if I get any more work from them. While my bank will hate me if I don't, I'd like to think my comedy dignity will do a little dance of happiness. Don't get me wrong, some great acts do these gigs and they can be good nights but last night was a glimpse into what its like to stop enjoying what you do for a living.

Right before I go shout at kids, I was meant to be doing a charity gig in Rochester tonight for a very worthy cause. Sadly due to car tyre issues, London gig issues and not having enough dosh for a train fare, I've had to drop out. The cause is for this:

Sian is going to be trekking across the Great Wall of China for Have a Heart, which is an impressive feat. I mean she has chosen the best wall to do it across. Not the 'Alright Wall of Taiwan' or the 'Pretty Good Wall of Norwich'. No, she's gone for the 'Great Wall'. Please donate if you can.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Virtually Yours

I'm not one to blog about computer games as I often fear it would cause some of the readership to fall asleep, but the last few days of my life has been entirely taken up with the two new games I got for my birthday and so I felt it was appropriate. If at this point you are already skeptically looking at this thinking 'yawn and triple yawn at the kingdom of geek' then, firstly, well done on that sentence, I'd say something like that, and secondly, stop reading now and maybe read some older blogs. Or why not just write your own? Actually, seconds thoughts, just read my old ones, I can't trust how yours will go. Chances are you'll be a blogging genius, but then also possible you'll blog inane tripe and send yourself into a whirling spiral of depression as you realise the only job you've ever wanted was that of a writer only to discover that dream has been shattered after you read back your three paragraphs of literary turd. I don't want to take the risk of doing that to you.

Computer games have always been a fairly big part of my life ever since the days of Super Mario on the NES, a game that was, and still is heralded as a true piece of gaming genius and yet if you look at it now it makes your eyes fight your own head as you witness lots of slightly different coloured blocks jump over other slightly different coloured blocks. Still, it hooked me and ever since then various games on various consoles have held a certain level of importance to me. Games such as Final Fantasy 7 which was like playing a truly excellent epic movie and the Resident Evil series which, to this day, has still scared me more than any horror movie. You might laugh at that but trust me you go back and play Resident Evil 3: Nemises and let's see how you feel when you're sitting in the dark and controlling your character with only a few rounds left and although there doesn't seem to be any zombies around, all you can hear is the shattering of glass. Genuine poo pants o clock.

What I've discovered in later life though, is that nowadays computer games are a little bit dangerous for me. It used to be that I would have school, university or work to keep me away from endlessly playing my life away, but now, with self employment I only have my own willpower to say 'hang on, shouldn't you be writing things?' And as it is, with very few gigs or deadlines this week, I am Xboxing like my life depended on it, to the point where I have been having dreams where I'm trapped in Arkham Asylum or fighting medieval Italians while leaping up buildings. This hasn't led to any odd behavior when around other people, although to be fair I've barely seen anyone except Layla since the weekend and so far I haven't thrown a batarang in her face or anything so I think its ok. I am an avid believer that computer games do not alter behavior and if anything they probably make life a bit better that you can take your stress out on some pixels rather than the twat in the post office. I often like to think that if Peter Sutcliffe had played GTA4 the world might be a better place now. Although it could just have given him more ideas which would be even worse.

Last night I took the initiative to stop playing Assassin's Creed 2 after 2 hours of gaming and I turned the Xbox off. Layla was out, there was nothing on TV and my brain had no flashes of inspiration for writing. So instead I picked up my laptop and went on Twitter. Then I had a horrible moment of clarity and realised I may as well live in a tiny box with my brain plugged in via a USB to some sort of main database as my body rots and I become entirely absorbed into the ethernet. Or just become stupidly fat but with very fast finger reflexes. This is perhaps a tad extreme, but as such I worry that the more I game the less I'm able to write and the more I give in to not writing and therefore play more games. So today, no gaming at all, and my gig should mean I go outside and talk with real people. Or at least at real people. Which still leaves me two to three hours this afternoon to play....argh! If anyone lives near me, please disconnect the mains outside my house. Thankyou.

Oh if any of you want a proper blog that is entirely about gaming (nearly) then have a look at my friend Mat's (who is often mentioned on this) blog which you can find here:


If you hate all this sort of thing, then its your fault you're still reading. So there.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Busy Doing Nothing

Some quick blog notes for today as I am busy. Busy doing what you might ask? Well my two responses to you are: 1) back off nosey face and 2) busy doing nuttin'. This is possible. By nuttin' I mean nothing. I'm not going round headbutting people, although that would take up quite a bit of time, especially if you count all the head resting I've have to do inbetween. No, I really am busy doing nothing. Well its lots of little bits of something that overall only amount to little bits of other things but generally if you were to compare them to, say, solving all the world's global warming issues, they would really amount to nothing. So in light of how much of my time nothing takes up, here you go:


The noticed yesterday that the front of the catflap ie the little bit that is the entrance from the outside cat world, had fallen off. I noticed this because everytime I stood near it, my legs got very cold, but also because, at around 1am last night, a small gathering of cats appeared in our living room. It was like some sort of cat party. I was also in the living room and this didn't seem to deter them as I was playing Xbox and hadn't yet noticed our house being used as a feline den of social activity. It was only when I put my controller down and noticed all three of the cats which weren't ours, they stared at me guiltily and bolted out. I presume an open cat flap is a cats way of inviting all the neighbours round for a housewarming or something. I have now fixed the catflap out of fear that I will come home one night to find hundreds of them smoking, drinking, dancing and wrecking the place.


Second cat item on the agenda today as I had to take one of our cats, Rosie to the vet, as she has a burst abcess on her back from a nasty cat bite. She doesn't seem bothered by this which makes me think either all cats are hardcore or Rosie, in particular is some sort of action cat. The latter seems likely which is why she's currently choosing to sleep on top of the high cupboard by our bed only to jump down, inches away from Layla's face while she sleeps, often scaring the crap out of her as she lands. I find it consistently amusing. Anyway our vet's is called Dragon Vet which is a creepy name for a vet place. It insinuates either they have been treating all animals since dragons existed and they are wizard types or they are some sort of triad group. Either way the vet I saw was an arsey man who insisted everything I fed our cat ie cat food was wrong and we were to buy some stupidly expensive organic cat food with kooky names which essentially contains the same thing as all the others but has a fancier package. He also said our cat, who is particularly small and runt like, was overweight and that cats should feel like a bag of bones. I started to worry that he was some sort of anorexic cat fancier. To be fair he sorted our cat out and she spent the car journey home meowing like a retarded siren.


Yesterday I made parsnip and carrot soup. It tastes nice, but it looks like vomit. I want to eat it, because it smells good, but then I look at it and don't want to eat it. I've tried eating it with my eyes closed but I spilt it on my jumper and it looked like I'd puked on myself. Sometimes my life is just too stressful.


I have £4 to my name for the forseeable future. I'm not sure what to do about this and part of me likes the challenge of having to live on £4. I reckon it can be done for a little while and it means I experiment and make things parsnip soup that looks like vomit. My main problem is that a few days ago our car got a flat tyre. That's not a problem in itself as I've changed a tyre all by myself once (admittedly my dad was there too, but he just watched. And said when I did things wrong) and would be up for doing it again especially as there are pictures on the internet. The big problem is that tyres cost more than £4. Well I'm sure there are £4 tyres, but I wouldn't want to risk using them. Without a tyre I can't drive to gigs, which would give me money to buy a tyre. I haven't got the train fare to get to the gigs to then buy a tyre, because train fares are more than £4. This sounds like one of those sorts of problems I would get given in maths GCSE then promptly fail. As a result, I am going to stand in the kitchen and put two apples in one hand and a satsuma in the other. Eventually someone should tell me a solution.


Here are two songs for today. The first is a track by David Lyre and remixed by my brother who goes under the moniker of The Last Skeptik. I like the word moniker and it makes me think of the character in friends despite the spelling difference. If you imagine that, then re-read the last sentence, its hella funny. Anyway, my bro who's done work with lots of music types, like Get Cape Wear Cape Fly and King Blues, is releasing his own remix album very soonish. Here's a taster of it:


Here's another one what he did too:


I want to hate his music because he's my younger brother and that's what you're meant to do with siblings. Pretend to be supportive but actually be loathing. But as it is, I think its all really good and we get along. I feel like I let all sterotypes down. Sorry.

Last track is this from Andrew Thompson which I've been playing loudly a lot today:

Or normal link for you facebookers:


Back to doing nothing.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Unsung Heroes

Migraines are really shit. I wish they were yourgraines or someoneelsesgraines. I realise this joke only works if you pronounce it my-graines as opposed to the way lots of people say me-graines. Well if you say me-graines then here is a sentence for you: Migraines are really shit. I wish they were yougrains or someoneelsesgraines. Very little changed there but it made a big difference. What didn't make a difference to my graine yesterday was...bloody anything! Anadins just made me absorb all the caffeine and be awake with a headache. Having a nap made me sleepy with horrible pounding behind the eyes evilness. Drinking loads of water made my bladder and brain hurt all at once. I was contemplating drilling a hole in my skull to let the demons out or breaking my own leg so I'd be distracted by a worse pain. Instead I hid under Layla's slanket, in the dark, for hours, being bored. This was not my intended way to spend the day. In fact I was really looking forward to heading along to the comedian's Christmas party that happened last night and I was also booked in to do a set at Josie Long's lovely gig in Camden, The Lost Treasures of The Black Heart. I'd prepared a whole bit on unsung heroes which will now never be aired because everytime I moved it made me feel sick and my eyeballs throbbed as though they were trying to leave my skull.

Writing about unsung heroes made me realise I had a list of people who had done small things in life that I hailed at the time as works of genius and will continue to do so until the sun explodes, or I die. Which will happen first? Who knows. Who knows indeed. Anyway, while I don't want to use the specific story I may have told last night, just incase I do find a way to place it within a set at some point later on, here are some of the people, who along my life path, I've decided are unsung heroes:

1) Tony at West One - Many a moon ago, me and my friend Mat worked as runners for a TV editing company just off Oxford Street. During this short period we learnt many an important life skill such as never to be a runner ever again, how to hold several cups of tea at once, where to buy a specific bottle of Purdeys from, that the woman from Superman 2 exists, how heavy an air conditioning unit really is, and how far good spinny wheely chairs go when on newly waxed wooden floors. But above all these, we learnt that Tony who worked at West One Cafe (which is now sadly closed) was a genius. Firstly he called me boss. I've never been and never will be anyone's boss, so for him to automatically see that I am clearly the boss of everyone was an awesome gesture. I'm sure part of it was said tongue in cheek, but I'll ignore that bit. Secondly and most importantly, you could buy a lot of nice food in West One, but the trick was to get a sandwich. For while it may not have been as grand as any of the salads, wraps, pasta or other assortment of treats, if you ordered a sandwich, you got to see Tony's superpower. Huddle round people huddle round, incase the FBI hear this and want him for tests. Tony, could, using just one swift movement, butter a piece of bread from corner to corner. In one stroke of the knife. The knife that every time had exactly the right splodge of butter upon it. Round of applause please. That man was a genius. I will never ever know how he did that and I hope he's somewhere now spreading condiments like a master.

2) Magician Busker - Once, while stuck in a dead end temp job and trying to while my lunch hour away in a sunny Leicester Square, a rather scruffy looking man approached me whilst I was eating my sandwich. I started to fumble for change expecting the obvious, but this man did not bring the obvious. No, he brought tiny moments of wizardry. He held his hand up to say 'stop' as I was looking for change, so I did. He then asked me if I believe in magic. I say 'yeah, why not', because I'm that kind of crazy care free rebel of the moment type. And I was sitting down and I was scared he'd mug me if I said no. He smiled and brought out two red sponge balls. He held one in his hand and gave me one and told me to put it on my hand and close my fist. He closed his fist too. I then had to shake my hand three times and say 'I believe in magic' and when I opened my hand, I had two sponge balls in it, and he had none. Now, I'm aware that someone like the wizard Pete Firman would scoff at a trick as easy as this, but I was merely a youth and it was a lovely moment of fun in my otherwise tedious lunch hour. The man then asked me to spare change if I could and I gave him one whole English pound. If he'd sawn a lady in half I'd have given him £3. No I'm not saying all homeless people should do magic tricks instead of busking, but they should.

3) Sauces Man - On a train home from the Edinburgh fringe in 2008, I was a broken and tired man. It had been a long month as usual and the train was filled with a horde of broken comedians. I decided to use my last few pounds on an overpriced egg mayonnaise sandwich from the buffet cart. You might note at this point that all my tales so far, have involved, in some sort or another, a sandwich. I'd like to say this is purely coincidence but I think that the Earl of Sandwich created something of genius when putting filling between those two bits of bread and I'm sure genius will always gravitate towards his creation. Also, I do eat a lot of sandwiches. Its possible that had any of these incidents happened on other days or times, I would also have been eating a sandwich. Anyway, I bought my sandwich from the tiny crouched Yorkshire man at the buffet cart, and as I did, he walked up close to the counter, and said 'There's some sauces for you there', gave a wink, then put a tomato ketchup, mayonnaise and mustard sachet in my paper bag. He then moved back to making tea, looking very smug about himself as though he'd saved someone's life. I was baffled by this. You do not need sauces for a sandwich, least of all egg mayonnaise, the least sauce needing sandwich there is. I then stayed and watched him do exactly the same thing to the next customer, confusing them too. For a while I wondered if he lived in a state where all food needed all sauces at all times, and perhaps he assumed that others would be grateful for this lunch based extra. Then I realised he'd just figured out a way to confuse everyone, and to brighten up this constantly dull 4 hour journey. This man was a legend.

4) Sad Clown - Once, on the train back from somewhere, but nowhere in particular, me and Mat saw a man who looked like the most broken upset human you've ever seen. Except, he also looked like a clown that had just been fired. His orangey hair stuck out at the sides in the same fashion as Krusty or any other famous proprietor of clownery. He had a long jacket, very big shoes and a longish face with a roundish nose. There was a small flower in his pocket that perhaps, on a better day, would have squirted water at someone, followed by a cheeky laugh. Even his expression of sadness looked like it was an over the top piece of Komedia Dell Arte. Needless to say he made me and Mat laugh a lot. This may seem mean, but I think actually, that means even though he was sad, he was still excelling at being a brilliant clown.

5) Wolf Man - He collected the rubbish from my parents house and he looked like Wolverine. I'll be honest, I'm easily pleased.

That's all of them. I'm off now to take my cat to the vet's. So she can hear some old war stories. Arf.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Praise of Songs

I watched Glee last night and I liked it. I'm honestly not sure what's wrong me at the moment. Admittedly I think its ok to like Glee considering everyone seems to like Glee, and most importantly I saw on Twitter Simon Pegg likes Glee, so I think I'm allowed to like it to. To be fair it had some lovely gags in there, and purposefully cringeworthy moments, along with a great script. The only moments I genuinely couldn't stand were the random bursting into song bits. I've never been a fan of this and its why, to this day there are only a handful of musicals I've ever been able to handle. These are:

Singin' In The Rain - Remember when dancing and singing was manly? Neither do I, but Gene Kelly did it and he was a proper man, who gets the girl and duffs up a vocab teacher. Yeah badass. How can anyone hate the song Good Morning? I'll tell you. When its played very early in the morning very loudly like I did when still drunk on my 21st birthday in my student house. I enjoyed it. Others who were still asleep, less so. Moses Supposes is my favourite though and was clearly written by a loon. Amazing stuff. And its all clever and about the first ever talking films, which is all historical and that. It still totally holds its own nowadays even though George Sampson and a CGI Gene Kelly have both tried to mess it up with all that yobbish bodypopping and that.* Shame they never released the sequel Pissing In The Wind.

Tommy - How unmusical can you get? Music by the Who and a story line about a child abuse and the evils of fame. It was a shame the square headed king of nauseating camp Elton John had anything to do with the film as otherwise Pinball Wizard is a track of legend. I've never seen the film, mostly for Elton John reasons (I won't lie, there is something about the man I loathe more than Lothian Road. Which I don't loathe. It just sounds loathy), but I saw it on stage when the dude that used to work in Tesco's got the star role and Kim Wilde played the mum, which was awesome. It is a rockpera without being anywhere near the same vomit covered ball park as We Will Rock You. Which incidentally is also the evil work of someone called Elton. Maybe I just hate Eltons.

West Side Story - Romeo and Juliet but done all with gangs and that. Awesome. I once sang 'It's Coming' for a NYT audition. I didn't get in. I think its because I ruined that song in a lot of ways. I've seen the stage version and when I did one of the gang members tried to throw and knife in the air and catch it again and he didn't and missed. Hahahahahahaha.

Kat and the Kings - A South African musical about a band of black South African's during the Apartheid who can tap dance and sing. Political, clever, and songs that don't make you want to pull your own eyes out with a fork.

Jerry Springer The Opera - Not really a musical, but an opera, and co-written by Stewart Lee. I will still always smirk whenever I hear the introductory song about the Devil.

Blues Brothers - technically a musical. Also the most amount of car mayhem ever in a film. Cab Calloway, Ray Charles and Aretha Franklin sing awesome music. Whats not to like? Nothing. Its brilliant and has some of the best quotes ever. 'It's 106 miles to Chicago, we got a full tank of gas, half a pack of cigarettes, it's dark, and we're wearing sunglasses.'

Shockheaded Peter - Kids getting their fingers chopped off and various other gruesome tales in songs by the Tiger Lillies. That's what musicals should be about.

That's it. That's all of them. Little Shop of Horrors is passable, and I will allow Mary Poppins, the Wizard of Oz - but not Wicked - and various other Disney films as they fall under the category of cartoon rather than musical as far as I'm concerned. And everything else makes me angry. I genuinely felt my temperature rise when Layla put Grease on once, and I've still never recovered from seeing Starlight Express. Its a show about toy trains for fucks sake. Why would anyone do that? Quick rundown of what I hate about musicals:

a) Unnecessary happy endings. Its just so horribly unrealistic. Don't get me wrong, I don't crave realism, hence why I like sci-fi films, or things with monsters in. However, things shouldn't always work out just so you can sing a happy clappy song at the end. Its why I like West Side Story. Death death death, and then lets have a sad sing song and a cry. Take that beaming toothed happy people with your shitty jazz hands!

b) Singing about everything. Its fine to sing about the big incidents or the moments of emotion, but when people start yawning on about tying their shoes, having a biscuit or doing a dance just for the sake of time filling, then it makes them look mentally ill.

c) Everyone looks like they've just been freshly cloned with faces so shiny it can deflect the sun's rays. Again, see number 1 for issues with realism.

d) A complete lack of storyline, heavily padded over by a couple of backflips or big songs. Just because you can defy gravity doesn't mean the show doesn't need to make sense. Yes its about Cats/Toy Trains/Someone in a mask who's dead but isn't dead, but I'd quite like some character development and sub-objectives to go with those big warbly notes please.

I'll admit, my opinion isn't well educated. I haven't sat through many musicals for fear I will break something or break down. But I'm fairly sure it won't happen with Glee. Even if it does, I'm watching it at home which is damage limitation. Today, I need to write some material for Josie Long's Lost Treasures of The Black Heart gig tonight, which I, as yet, have nothing for. This is not good, especially as I might need to take our cat Rosie to the vet because she is chewing off a bit of her own fur and Layla is worried. I'm not, I think she's trying to restyle her 'do', but apparently its more likely to be an infection. I would prefer the former, but then again a song about the latter would be more to my taste.

* I don't think bodypopping is yobbish. I am merely jealous that I cannot simulate robot movements at will. I also fear that the people who can are actually robots and its the beginning of an undercover operations where they begin as entertainment dancing bots and eventually start the Matrix/Terminator Salvation.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Being Vegetarian Without Being Vegetarian

All the snow outside our flat has gone. I feel a little bit like the boy in The Snowman when the snowman melts, only less able to sing and also a lot less emotional. In fact, once again I've just given a simile which isn't true. I don't feel at all like the kid in the snowman. He had a magical adventure, whereas I just nearly fell over on the ice a few times and felt very cold. It did have the lovely effect of making everything look nice for a bit though. Even the job centre at the end of our road looked slightly more serene than normal. This may be because its been too cold for people to stand outside shouting at each other and because all their dogs slip and skate making them less 'killer illegal breed' and more 'killer illegal that bit in Bambi'. Only main difference is that if these beasts were in Bambi they'd probably kill their own mothers making the ending a bit less emotional.

So now there is no snow, and Christmas and my birthday is definitely over, it feels like holiday time has stopped. So to comfort myself in this harsh catapult into the face of reality, I am going to spend today playing the new Xbox games I got for my birthday and deal with everything else tomorrow. Some people might say this is a slackers way to deal with things, but I would argue that in the same way someone couldn't just stop taking heroin, they'd have to slowly wean themselves off it, I am much the same with relaxation. Today for example, I may sit in an uncomfortable way for a few hours. Tomorrow, I will do two bits of work, then sit uncomfortably for a few hours, then stand around a bit. I will continue this trend until by next week, I am spending the day working uncomfortably while standing around. The being uncomfortable and standing will hinder the work and I will slowly have to wean myself back into a series of comfortable working sitting positions. Sadly, once I am in these comfortable working sitting positions, I don't want to do much. And so, dear reader (for there is only one of you), you can see the sort of terrible dilemma my life is constantly in.

But of course I jest. That's my job, jesting, so of course I do it. Otherwise I would be out of work even more than I already am. Today, apart from Xbox playing I am doing a tiny weeny bit of work, and, AND AND, I am going to cook something from my trendy new veggie cookbook that Layla's mum bought me. Its called 'The Vegetarian Option' and has some really rather lovely things in it. I'd already bought it for my parents and my brother, being that we are all veggies, I thought it was one of those clever presents that sorts out present getting in one go. Then I realised I quite liked all the stuff in it as well. The only thing is, as much as I'm excited about making things from it - and no, you cannot mock excitement about cookery, for cookery leads to eatery and eatery is brilliant - there are two problems, both of which I shall highlight in picture form for you now:

Problem Number 1 -

What the hell does that quote mean? How on Earth can you be 'vegetarian without being vegetarian'? I understand how perhaps someone could be say 'Jewish without being Jewish' in that perhaps they eat bacon or eaten of a non-blessed plate, but you at least stay Jewish in heritage or ancestry. Whereas if you are vegetarian but you aren't being vegetarian then you eat meat which means YOU AREN'T A VEGETARIAN! Is this book aimed at people who aren't veggies but like eating vegetables? If so then there should be no shame in buying a veggie cookbook. I can't imagine they are sitting thinking ' Oh god, I can't have all my friends assuming I'm a vegetarian because I bought this book. They'll stop inviting me to cow biting days and the meatings where we sit, drink meat broth and discuss the best way to marinade pig eyes. I know, I'll get a cookbook that means I'll be vegetarian without being vegetarian.' If you are reading this thinking that you have had exactly that conversation in your head then please let it be known you are a mega cockhouse.

Problem Number 2 -

I'll admit there is little to say about this that shouldn't already be expected from my previous paragraph. But, if, like in the very hard to read bit at the bottom of the pic, you find it hard to make soup without a chicken stock because you are a 'carnivore at heart', BUY ANOTHER FUCKING BOOK FOR MEAT EATERS! Phew, deep breaths, and sudden regret I've bought this book for so many people. Sigh.

Two small notes in addendum:

1) My face is very beardy. This is good as it keeps warmth in my face, and because Layla likes it. This is bad because MY FACE IS REALLY ITCHY! Seriously, I think its why some of today's blog has been in capitals. There is little other way to cope. STOP THE ITCHING PLEASE STOP IT!

2) I am doing Josie Long's rather superb night in Camden tomorrow called The Lost Treasures Of The Black Heart. It will be a lovely night apart from my bit as I havent got a clue what to talk about yet and today I am playing Xbox so will have to figure it out tomorrow. But you should come. There will be great acts and nice merchandise and cakes and all sorts. Here's the linkery: