| Sign of the times?
Wednesday, August 30, 2006
There you are, schlepping along, just minding your own business, when you find yourself walking behind some pinstriped largedude waffling into his mobile phone. 'Yadda yadda yadda.' Thinks: hmm that voice sounds strangely familiar. 'Yadda yadda yadda the Prime Minister yadda'. Thinks: I recognise those ears. 'Yadda yadda leadership issues'. Thinks: Well bugger me with a rolled up copy of London Lite - if it isn't former Her Majesty's Secretary of State for the Home Department, Charles [ unfit for purpose ] Clarke MP - live from Norwich.Hair today
The following thoughts have since entered the brain of drD:
1. Aren't former Her Majesty's Secretaries of State for the Home Department meant to travel everywhere with a posse of fully armed Ross Kempalikes? - I distinctly recall a sense of heightened international
2. Is this is plot to endanger the personal wellbeing of Mr Clarke? We should be told.
3. If the former Her Majesty's Secretary of State for the Home Department is openly walking through London streets, openly discussing with all n sundry 'Leadership Issues' - what does this say about the state of Her Maj's government? What next - Gordon goes on the record in the checkout queue at Sainsburys?
4. This is the second former Her Majesty's Secretary of State for the Home Department that I have run into on a London street, the first being the oleaginous Leon Brittan hanging around outside Dixons in Victoria. Do they get let out for the day to go walkabout I wonder?
5. Could this little article he wrote recently be in any way at odds with what he was chatting about today?
freshly squeezed for you by drD at 11:59 PM
Monday, August 28, 2006
Friday sees the start of Tacheback - a month long campaign to encourage chaps to grow sponsored moustaches in aid of the fight against male cancers. There are tips, galleries and an interactive personal tache advisor to give you expert help on which style will suit you and no sign of Ann Widdecombe. My own experience in this area is a mixed one. Regular readers will recall my stunted sidefurniture. I am not sure if I will be allowing the upper lip to sprout during September for fear of endless conversations about my personal visage plus it could all get a bit Village People and, much as I respect the genre that is 1970s novelty subversive disco, I can't quite bring myself to emulate it's greatest stars. Sir Cliffe looks quite good though doncha think?They said what?
"most people in the television industry think that Vicky Pollard, the teenage delinquent happy to swap her baby for a Westlife CD, is an accurate representation of the white working class in Britain"
Jimmy McGovern, [ writer of Cracker ], berates TV land for "total contempt for their audience".
Car insurance comparison sites analysed. Aside from the obvious, 'Insurance is complicated', it seems to boil down to, 'shop around and do everything you can to minimise the risk you present'. Interesting that confused.com is owned by Admiral.
freshly squeezed for you by drD at 11:00 AM
Saturday, August 26, 2006
"I sunbathed for two days solid then passed out in the bath."
Sir Cliffe gets permatanned.
"My thighs were afire with agony."
Gain for pain at JB's.
"The man opposite said that I should wear a wig like his. I was amazed because I did not have clue that he was wearing one."
We believe you Paul, not a lot.
"There is a perception that bloggers are sad, joyless people in their underwear who sit in front of their computers all day."
Tosh. I never wear underwear when I am blogging - it's full tuxedo and or ball gown for me every time.
Speaking of tosh..."We will supply moustaches and cravats for everyone on the day."
Glaswegians break the world record for the most people dressed as Charles Rennie Mackintosh.
"I skulked around the undergrowth behind the closely-manicured lawn..."
It can only be a matter of time before he's arrested for blogging with intent.
"It (Big Brother) has become an established summer event, a bit like Wimbledon. I see no reason why, if we protect it, it can't keep coming back every summer forever." Groan.
freshly squeezed for you by drD at 3:10 PM
Friday, August 25, 2006
Horse chestnuts may be in trouble. I've been noticing a lot of my local ones are not looking too good at the moment. Do you see conkers?
Bizarre fact of the week
Saddam Hussein holds the keys to the city of Detroit and is an honorary citizen.
freshly squeezed for you by drD at 12:01 AM
Thursday, August 24, 2006
Did you know that this is Gut Week?waspmail
No? Me neither, until yesterday when I happened upon an article about how dietary fibre causes damage to endothelial cells which line the gut. The mystery of how high fibre diets work has at last been revealed. And, Gillian McKeith, you were wrong. The cells, when damaged release mucus which helps to ease the passage of food through the gut thus keeping one 'regular'. Too much information? Well, apparently we're all far too embarrassed by bowelish things and, as a consequence, one third of the population regularly suffers from digestive illnesses. Bowel Cancer is the second biggest cancer killer in the UK and 50 people every day succumb to the disease. Given that we all have bowels and that disease of the bowel is one of the biggest health issues we face it does seem ludicrous that we're so embarrassed to deal with it in a matter of fact way. I understand that other cultures are less squeamish when it comes to gastrointestinal goings on and, given our history of social repression and stiff upper everythings [ anal retentiveness anyone? ], it seems we are not doing ourselves any favours when it comes to digestive health. Eating fresh fruit and vegetables and taking a half hour walk every day seems to go a long way to helping your gut to stay healthy. Not putting up with certain symptoms is also a good practice. The fact that so many people are dying prematurely from preventable or treatable conditions in this country is not right. So do your bit; check out those, motions and encourage others to do the same. Poo may be taboo but you too can see it anew as a window to your wellbeing.
freshly squeezed for you by drD at 12:01 PM
Wednesday, August 23, 2006
From: drDNew Modelle Army
Subject: Your tenancy
This is my first written message but you might have heard me before today singing to myself or talking to the cat. I'm the one with the deep voice who's trapped a few of you and chucked you out of my house downstairs. Yes, the one that lives underneath you. I've lived here for quite a long time actually - more than 17 times longer than you. In fact, I like to think I own the place; call me territorial - I'm sure you understand. Well, I noticed - or rather Mr Roofer noticed, a few weeks ago that you'd moved in up there. I don't recall receiving your tenancy application but, having researched your culture, understand that this is not the way you do things. In fact, the way you do things is definitely not the way I do things - but, no matter, let's agree to be different. I'm a great admirer of your outfits and your aerobatic skills but have yet to understand the need you seem to have to fly into dark holes. Anyway, to get to the point, as I'm sure you'd like to; I need you to move out in about 12 weeks. Mr Roofer agreed to wait until you moved out but he's coming back in November and he's a bit concerned that you might get to the point with him. He did suggest that I employ Mr Poisoner to assist you with your removal but, after checking out Mr Poisoner's methods I decided that this would be a most unneighbourly [ not to mention unecological ] thing to do. There is enough death and destruction in the world without my adding to it. I hope you'll consider that when you next consider getting to the point. Now, I think it fair to warn you that the weather is getting a bit colder and will continue to do so for the next few weeks. In 12 weeks time it is likely to be very cold indeed up there and, ( how can I put this delicately? ), you are likely to be frozen to death. So it really would be a good idea to relocate to somewhere warmer before then. I hear it's very nice in France and if you left soon you could make it in time for the apple harvest. I hope you understand; it's not that you're not welcome, it's just that I don't want you here for much longer. I hope you've enjoyed your time here in bignjuicyville. You picked a good spot when you arrived in the spring - gooder than you probably will ever know.
freshly squeezed for you by drD at 12:01 AM
Tuesday, August 22, 2006
Debbie McGee, wife of the millionaire, Paul Daniels is transforming the world of model agencies with her unique approach to the recruitment of new talent. Using an innovative website she is seeking out new faces, talents, abilities and characters for work/opportunities in Modelling, Catwalk, Fashion, The Stage, Film, Television, Dance and many types of promotional work. She hopes to cater for all requirements. No experience is necessary. Nervous applicants can be reassured that the people involved in this agency have National reputations to protect.
I present for you here a sample of what is on offer.
Apply here. [Don't tell them I sent you]
freshly squeezed for you by drD at 12:01 AM
Monday, August 21, 2006
Let joy be unconfined
Juan Clackk writes from the EUROPEAN LOTTERY COMMISSION to tell me: "Your Email have won a PACIFICOLOTERIA PRIZE OF € 850,000 (Euro), a prize payout of your winning has been approved by the GROUPO LOTERIA PACIFICO INTERNACIONAL. In accordance with the EUROPEAN lottery ordinance, you are authorized as the lotto prize winner to request claims of your winning prize."
Thankyou so much for your kind notification. Unfortunately I will be unable to provide you with my bank details so that you can transfer my 'claim win' to me. Likewise I am also presently unable to travel to your Madrid office - address: CALLE GRAN-VIA 32-N 1C MADRID ESPAÑA - as I can't be arsed. However, if any Madrid based readers of this blog would care to pop along to the above address I am more than happy for you to hand over the €850k smackers to them - I am sure that they will send it on to me as the world is full of altruistic trustworthy people just like your good self. You will understand my amazement at being the recipient of such a prize based purely on a randomly selected email address with no indication that it is attached to a real person - that is remarkable generosity and speaks volumes for your integrity. I am truly grateful and look forward to receiving my prize asap. Meanwhile, I wonder if you would be so good as to clear up a tiny question that arose in my mind when I searched for the name of your organisation and found it listed under 'Schemes, Scams, Frauds' on this page here. I feel sure that there must be some mistake, given the impeccable credentials listed in your message to me, ie: your appointment of DR ALONSO REYES as my 'paying agent'. It is probably a wise move on your part to base DR ALSONSO in the United States - what with this being a European lottery and such. I do hope you can clarify this small point and look forward to hearing from you further.
Yours with love and appreciation of my 'payout of your winning'.
PS: Could I suggest that in future messages that you sign your email with your own name and not, 'Lorrina Heather' as this creates the impression that you are an incompetent. It is also almost an anagram of, 'Another Liar Here' which will not do at all.
freshly squeezed for you by drD at 7:52 PM
Friday, August 18, 2006
Are you sorry it's finished? I'm not. Move on. Must be time for another Pop Idol/ Sex Factor / Simon Cowell ate my granny season.
Recommended: A light, fruity, summery wine - available in pink for all you girlies or white for greater blokeability [ ok I'm pushing it but red fizz would be vile - believe me I've tried it ]. Available from a recovering retailer near you. Husky voice not included.
Way to coco
If you have to drown, then chocolate may be the only medium to do it in - mmm. Thankfully he was saved. No snickering at the back there. I'm milking this one eh?
freshly squeezed for you by drD at 10:09 PM
Wednesday, August 16, 2006
CommentasticLicenced to thrill
Blog comments are strange aren't they? They often help to develop the content of a post and give it a richer context. I have to say that I really do appreciate it when people write comments and especially so those that regularly comment - thankyewverymuch. Occasionally you get a 'landmark comment' from somebody who's never done so before. Although Blogger provides a fine system of archiving for blog posts, there is still the sense that stuff disappears off the radar once it is about three days old - very few people read it again apart from the odd googler looking for pictures of bellies [ that one is very popular but I won't publish it again for fear of traumatising a regular reader] or 'car041 v0rderm**ns b*m' [anti google spelling there] - which still holds much fascination for the interweb community it seems. Comments seem even more deeply buried once the post to which they are linked falls of the front page. Every now and again I rummage through my old comments and find something that someone has commented on since the original posting. Today I found a landmark comment. One that was made by the person that the post was about. I think this is the first time it's happened that a TV personage has commented. Back in August 04 I was micro-reviewing the, then, new Channel 4 series, That'll teach em. I listed my two favourite characters in the show. Waddayaknow? - eight months after the post one of them came and left a comment - which I only found today. One small step for a blog, one giant leap for a comment management system. Makes a refreshing change from spamerooni loonies.
freshly squeezed for you by drD at 9:51 PM
Tuesday, August 15, 2006
Do you have what it takes to be a teacher? Apparently significant numbers of trainee teachers don't. At least they don't have the ability to pass tests in Numeracy, Literacy and IT. This might be considered worrisome if you were expecting your little angel to be in the hands of the competent I suppose. To see what all the fuss was about I decided to try out one of the practice tests and I am now officially ajudged to be competent in the IT requirement [ such a relief and sense of achievement I can tell you]. The test took me about 20 of the available 35 minutes. It's self marking but you have to download a thing to your doobry and then clicky clicky before you can start. [Notice my highly developed technical vocab?]. The test is a weird 'simulation' of a windows PC [because everyone uses windows right?] and applications such as spreadsheet, email etc. Only they were not much like any spreadsheet or email I'd ever used. I was reminded of those fake computer screens you see in thrillers where the hero switches on the computer which beeps and up on the screen flashes a massive icon with 'EMAIL' in inch high letters underneath. He then clicks and the screen does some fantastic animatated routine a'la Strictly Come Email before displaying the secret message in 3 inch high text whilst beeping in a technical stylee. Well it was a bit like that and for quite a few of those 20 minutes I found myself fighting against the software because it would not let me do things like copy and paste text or took ages to start up the program I needed [probably part of the simulation for using school computers]- this would be enough to throw the underconfident testee I'm sure. So now I'm fully qualified just let me know when you need me to come round and teach you how to use one of those special top secret computers with the massive icons. What fun we could have accessing all that secret info and drinking tea whilst we wait for the thing to start up. The future is looking so bright I'm going to need shades.
freshly squeezed for you by drD at 10:19 PM
Monday, August 14, 2006
It's car insurance time again and I've previously enthused about confused.com. Once again they've quoted me happy unlike the originators of that slogan who sniffed at my business given my 'unsuitable claims history' - ie a vandalised car window which was not my fault and did not seem to bother the 35 other insurers that offered me cover. Even more ironic is that the insurer I've chosen is owned by, you guessed it, but trading under a different name. [ 'Fooling the people some of the time' is a phrase that comes to mind ]. Now the main reason I'm rattling on about insurance [ before you lose the will to live ] is to let you know - should you be in the business of acquiring car insurance in the immediate future - that The Post Office is giving £50 cashback on all new policies at the moment [ car and home ]. The cash is sent as a good old fashioned postal order within 28 days but there are no other strings attached. This offer seriously undercut any other quote I'd received so, I think, is a good bargain. Insurance sure is a cutthroat business - which is what I'd like to do to some insurance staff. But not the nice Post Office man, who has the same name as me - must be a good omen.Underground
Privacy at home
Recent careful reading of a BT stealth leaflet, "we're sending you this handy 104 page small print guide to let you know about changes to our terms and conditions..yadda yadda...yawn etc" - reveals a sneaky inertia based moneymaking tactic which plumbs new depths, even for them. Earlier this year they launched a massive Jeremy Clarkson fronted campaign for their Privacy at Home service. This comprises a free use of their caller display system [CDS] plus registration with the Telephone Preference Service. All fine n dandy, as Jeremy would irritatingly say. However, and their website still doesn't say this, BT are soon going to start charging for the caller display component of the service. This will not be a direct charge but customers will be obliged to make a minimum number of calls via the BT network during each billing period in order for the CDS to remain 'free'. If you fail to make the required number of calls then you will be billed. For those of us cheapskates who use non BT services to make our calls this means consciously electing to make a certain number of calls at a more expensive rate in order to keep the 'free' CDS. I can take or leave this to be honest - I may opt out of it all together as, although it's sometimes useful to know who's calling, it really hasn't made that much difference to me in the few months I've had it. However, what is annoying is the great social munificence with which they presented the Privacy at Home scheme. 'We are BT and we're fluffy - we really care about your privacy at home'. They sign up large numbers of people to the scheme on the basis that it is free and then they go and sneak in this pathetic little moneygrab plan in a leaflet that most people probably won't bother to read. The first they'll know about it, if they don't use BT to make calls, is when the bill for the CDS appears in a few months. This should net them a few million quid. Unless, of course, someone like BBC Watchdog get hold of the story...
There's nothing like talking up the product you're trying to sell, especially one which relies on an element of goodwill from the purchasers. The Big Issue seller in Bignjuicyville town centre the other day was doing himself no favours with his cries of, "Expensive toilet paper?, expensive toilet paper?", to everyone walking past. Strangely enough, nobody was buying. I've always thought the Issue was OK for a 'charidee' publication and, no matter how 'worthy', it does provide an element of dignity for people who might otherwise be begging. Can't be much fun trying to flog it tho these days what with all the chuggers competing for the charity pound. Perhaps he was losing faith in the brand values. I blame Anita Roddick for selling out to L'Oreal for £650m. She was so not worth it.
freshly squeezed for you by drD at 3:42 PM
Sunday, August 13, 2006
In how many metros around the world have you been?
Make your chart here.
freshly squeezed for you by drD at 11:01 PM
Saturday, August 12, 2006
Every now n agin I get all moony and spend far too long snarfling around on the web looking up all sorts of lunar related stuff. I'm particularly partial to a nice Apollo piece. Visiting Washington a few years back I was able to indulge myself at the Smithsonian by worshipping at the Apollo 11 Command Module. Ever since then the whole Apollo Program has had a more human dimension for me. Seeing that tiny 'tin can' with it's primitive looking control systems gently illuminated and it's outer shell heat marked from re-entry made me realise what had been achieved. Also particularly striking was the image of Neil Armstrong, shown above, taken just after his historic moonwalk. He looks tired, unshaven but unmistakeably elated. It's a very human angle on the story which is often told with remote looking imagery of rockets, spacesuits and other hardware. It's become one of my favourite space images for that reason. The Apollo Image Gallery is a superb collection of high resolution scans of the original Apollo photographs, many taken by the astronauts themselves. Compelling and addictive.
Did you know that, until recently, the Earth had two moons? Details.
This week's smut award is given to Blue Witch for her moist tale of defective cocks and extensions.
freshly squeezed for you by drD at 10:00 PM
Thursday, August 10, 2006
freshly squeezed for you by drD at 12:00 PM
Tuesday, August 08, 2006
[WARNING - more waspy shots below]drD's summer menu
After Birdy's recent contratemps with Polly-Put-The-Stuffing-In I feel some trepidation at posting these pictures. They are, in frankness, an aesthetic appreciation of a once living creature. So I suppose this may make me a hypocrite. Though I'm not selling this one to Kate Moss for £4k; more likely Vera the local wino for 23p and a Lager Back chaser. Anyway, this little buzzer was flying around the kitchen yesterday being all menacing and annoying as I was trying to make lunch. I left him get on with it, intending to trap him later and release him to fly back to his mates in the roof [ see earlier entries for full saga ]. However, he decided he was going to fly right into my face, not just once but repeatedly. It was if there was a dollop of jam on my forehead or something - he just wouldn't quit. I was left with no choice but to defend myself - which I did with minimum force. Utilising a nearby 'Indian Pizza' price list [don't ask], I flicked the little buzzer, propelling him in the direction of the window [closed], thus stunning him whilst making my escape, sandwich in hand. I could see him still buzzing around from a distance, repeatedly head butting the window. My later attempts at capture proved fruitless as he kept flying off into the light fittings or hiding down the back of the cooker. Some wasps will not be be caught - so I gave up and hoped he'd find his way to the garden back the way he must have come. Alas, having found his corpse on the windowsill this morning it appears he never made it. I'm slightly concerned that his thorax seems to be a bit loosely attached to his abdomen. I don't know much about wasp anatomy so if this is normal or not I can't tell - I'm hoping I didn't inflict a fatal injury. Nonetheless I thought I would take a look under the macro lens and when I saw the fantastic markings, the pointy stinger and the beautiful transparency of the wing, I thought I would show him off before executing a dignified departure. A measure of my inbuilt fear is the fact that even after satisfying myself that he wasn't asleep, I still maintained a healthy distance and wouldn't even contemplate touching him with my hands. That stripey bum sends a strong message eh?
freshly squeezed for you by drD at 9:30 PM
Sunday, August 06, 2006
The summer weather this year has been simply off-the-scale heat wise. As I type, a large glacier is dripping slowly to oblivion just like Peter Mandelson's* career. A mosquito convention has commenced in the local swamp [ draw your own Labour Party conference parallels - it's too hot to think of any ] and ones culinary inventiveness has been sorely tested of late. How best to tempt the heat jaded palette into an appreciation of the joy of eating at this time of year? Barbecued dog burger? This may be fine for the neighbours - no mention of Rover's minced up remains from me, despite the aroma permeating my abode and inducing nauseous retchings more severe than when Thatch was re-elected in 87. Being an imaginative soul - nay a considerate creator - I require a little more creativity in my cuisine. Here, then, is my summer menu suggestion for today.
Rice a'la Condy with UNTurkey [vegetarian]
Bombe Hezbollah avec bile d'Israel
[*other moustaches are available]
Here - I did and I'm a 'considerate creator' - but hey you knew that already now. via Simon
The Best Uncircumcised Building in the World - and it's in London.
freshly squeezed for you by drD at 5:30 PM
Thursday, August 03, 2006
Inside the new stadium with Scouser Dave.
.. The Guardian gets in on the act re: Cuban succession - interestingly there are no moustaches involved.
They're still there - buzzing around looking all stripey and yellow in the sun. Thanks for the suggestions. There appears to be no easy answer to this one. I'm having a hard time reaching for the phone and condemning them to die. Sigh
A minister blogs
"My attempt to help bridge the gap - the growing and potentially dangerous gap - between politicians and the public." David Miliband gets down with the kids. He even does comments - vetted I suspect.
Happiness is not the same as pleasure
freshly squeezed for you by drD at 9:19 PM
Wednesday, August 02, 2006
Why is nothing ever simple?Viva la revolución
Mr Roofer came the other day to plug my leak. I got a call from him this morning to tell me that he'd not be finishing the job until I got the wasps nest removed. That'd be the wasps nest I had no idea was there but suddenly explains the high wasp to bee ratio currently populating the honeysuckle nearby. Now, how do you get rid of a wasps nest in a wholly non-violent, non-toxic manner, adhering at all times to principles of karmic balance and inner thingy?
So far all I've been able to come up with is numerous Mr Zapattacks that offer to come round and squirt noxious chemicals at them whilst enthralling you with bloodthirsty - [ do wasps have blood? I think so ] - tales of how they die. Isn't there a wasp resettlement programme I could enlist them in or something? Does it have to end in carnage? I know if I left them for a couple of months then they'd cark it anyway but there is the small problem of water dripping into my house meantime.
All suggestions gratefully received.
freshly squeezed for you by drD at 11:35 AM
Tuesday, August 01, 2006
With Fidel out of circulation, the Cuban elite must be sensing a change in the offing.
Who will take control of the adoring masses? Who will flick the electricity switch on and off to the US embassy? Who will order the spare parts for all those ancient cars driving around Havana? Like any political vacuum, I suppose there is a queue of wannabes in place ready to step instantaneously into the vacated shoes. Fidel has been in the job for fifty years. Nine US presidents have come and gone. Could a successor lie within the current Cuban government? The average age of the top people appears to be 60 plus [Fidel himself is 80 in two weeks] and the standin Presidente, Fidel's brother Raul, is 75. The role of the publicist seems not to exist in Cuba if the government website is anything to go by. Most of the ministers look worryingly similar, equipped with what look like government issue revoluciónary moustaches supplied by Saddam Hussein Direct [ press 1 for nerve gas, 2 to have your lawyer assassinated ]. It's interesting how dodgy they all look and how unlike western politicians they are. I suppose when there's no opposition you don't have to worry about your appearance. Just imagine being offered the chance to vote for any of those pictured - which one would you choose?
freshly squeezed for you by drD at 10:57 PM