Tuesday, March 29, 2005

The Beer Inspector

Today Steve the Landlord from the Wheatsheaf pub called me he asked me to come over as soon as possible. So I dropped everything and high tailed it to the pub. When I got there Steve and this guy in a suit had the counter full of glasses of beer. The guy in the suit was looking at each glass in turn.
"Just in time Mike." Says Steve.
"What's happening?" I ask, as if I didn't know.
"We're having a beer tasting."Steve has some new beers on tap and the man from "Casque marke" was there to inspect Steves beers. We chatted while we tested the beers. The first test is the clarity test the scale goes from cloudy and tainted through dull clear and brilliant. All Steves beers scored the highest brilliant. Then aroma there's no scale for that just the nose whether it's musty or any other nasty odours or if it's clean and fresh and aromatic bearing in mind different beers obviously smell differently. Top marks on that as well. Then the temperature test. The beer should be in the range of 11C - 14C. Two of his beers were 14.5C Eeeek! He lost points on that one. Then finally the tasting; my favourite test. Clean on the plate and a well rounded flavour with no noxious under or overtones. Full marks on that too. So we tried and tested everyone. I'm not sure my comments of "This is a bloody good pint." held any sway with the official judge. It didn't matter because he loved all the beers. So Steves beers were awarded the highest marks except for two beers that were half a degree too warm. But it was still a very good pass.
Then the testing was over, Steve said "Right choose your drinks."
"Sorry?"
"Well it's a shame to throw them down the sink after they've scored top marks in the test we might as well enjoy them."
So we each grabbed two beers and set about quaffing the ale, as he said it's a shame to waste good beer. Now I don't normally drink during the day. but I will make exceptions sometimes and anyway it's amazing how fast the afternoon goes after a few beers. Chrikey is that the time already?

iPod now playing - You're driving me crazy by The Temperance seven

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Tortured Artist

I was woken this morning by the sound of a girl crying in the next room. Which is really strange because the next room is a store room and as far as I know there aint no girls stashed away in there. So I figured it must be my blue girl ghost who appears every now and then.

Now here's an insight into my psyche. This reveals the torture I am in as a struggling artist. Read it and weep. Condemn my soul to eternal torment or just enjoy the wierdness that was my last nights dream.............

I was looking about and went into a room and there was this cute little girl there sitting on the floor sharing her sandwiches with a load of rats which she called her friends, they were swarming all over her hands and arms trying to get at the sandwiches and she was laughing. I looked on in disbelief and her mother walked in and started screaming fit to bust. I just stood there. The little girl sat there with all the rats saying "It's ok mummy they're my friends." the mother grabbed the little girl and pulled her away and as the rats fell off her arms she had no hands left the rats had eaten her hands and were scurrying away with fingers in their mouths. The little girl just kept on laughing. Then I'm running around trying to catch the rats to get the fingers back and try to stick them back on the little girls hands while the mother screamed some more, but it was a silent scream.

Chrikey with an imagination like that I should start writing horror stories a la Steven king or James Herbert. Forget being a musician I should be a writer or both.

iPod now playing - Spirit in the Sky by Doctor and The Medics

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Saturday, March 26, 2005

New shoes Jeff!!!

So I've got to get new shoes and I'm looking round the shops. Now this is my worst nightmare. I normally don't mind wandering round shops. But going round shops to look for new stuff for me is impossible. I go into sport and soccer, the amount of different styles is overwhelming so I walk straight out. I was umming and ahhing over a £6 pair of trainers for Chrissakes. Buying clothes is just as bad. I hate buying clothes. I hate new clothes. It takes me ages to get used to the idea. A few years ago the then love of my life bought me a pullover for christmas, it took me nearly six months before I could wear it. My ex wife had to sneak my old clothes out of the house in a bin bag and dump them so I wouldn't wear them anymore. I'm always full of good intention. I march right into the shop full of confidence about buying a new coat for instance and within 30 seconds I'm shaking and panicking and I have to get out. I'f I went into the same shop with you, to get YOU a new coat I'd be happy browsing the racks for ages, no problem. I could even give you fashion advice and make comments like "No your bum doesn't look big in that." I'll happily go shopping with you, but you'd go crazy if you went shopping with me, for me.
So I try to go into three or four shops and the same thing happens, panic sets in. Totally demoralised and broken I make my way back to the multi story car park get into my clapped out Nissan Primera 2.0SGX and start driving home. I pass a garage with cars in the yard. I stop see a lovely Renault Meganne Scenic. It's five grand.
I buy it there and then. No problem. I now have a new car.
So why can't I buy a bleedin pair of shoes for myself?

I've figured out how to buy jeans for myself. I know exactly where I'm going. I know exactly the right size I need and style. I drive to the shop. Take a deep breath and run inside, grab the jeans and run to the check out. Pay up and dash out all in the space of two minutes. Sorted. Any longer than that and I'm liable to drop the jeans in the nearest bargain bin basket and run out of the shop empty handed.
The words "Mikel you're impossible." have been said to me many times.
Girlfriends of mine who in the past have taken pity on me and suggested they'd go with me to choose some new clothes because they are fed up with what I wear have resorted to tearing out their own hair. One threatened to go to the kitchen department and stab herself with the nearest sharp knife. Most have vowed never to go shopping with me again if it's something for me.
You girls don't have this problem. You'll rush out and spent the day buying new clothes like it was an olympic event. My ex wife had no problem at all in buying herself clothes. In fact she was so good at it ................ well here's the picture. When we first married we had a wardrobe. She had the left side I had the right hand side. Then we had two wardrobes. I still had just the right hand side of one of them. Then the chests of draws I had the top two of one she had the rest. A third wardrobe was bought as her clothes increased in number. Then I cleared a small utility room and she had a walk in wardrobe as well. By the time of our separation my single half of the wardrobe had shrunk to a quarter and I could no longer see the bedroom carpet for piles of her clothes. All essential. All designer labels. There was no room for me in the house anymore. That's not the reason for our separation of course. But it makes a good joke.

iPod now playing - Rufus is a tit man by Louden Wainwright III

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Wednesday, March 23, 2005

You can't get smugger than this


This is my friend Abbi. She's also very smug. She's just landed herself a recording contract. Her first single comes out in May. Meanwhile the record company is taking her to Japan to promote said single and album. All the songs written by Abbi herself. They can't decide what to call her. Abbi sounds good to me but they are thinking of "Yellow" because unusually Abbi has yellow eyes. Actually they are more amber coloured. So now I'm triply smug because I have played on stage with her at a gig. That was such good fun. I was playing 12 string and Abbi was playing my Ovation 6 string. She's a little disappointed that her boyfriend Richard isn't involved in her record deal even though he's a talented musician in his own right. The record company are putting together their own team of musicians to support her on tour. So that's how it goes I'm afraid. One of the last times you'll be able to see her for free will be at the Golden Fleece Stamford next month. I'll be there. We've always known she had the talent to go places and she was really too good to be playing in a pub band. But you've got to start somewhere and to be honest her band "Within" is a pretty good band anyway. But she's the one that always sparkles......and as I've always said. To know her is to love her. She's great.
By the way don't mess with her she's very handy at the old martial arts. Posted by Hello

iPod now playing - London Calling by The Clash

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Tuesday, March 22, 2005

The Smug Convention

Just in case you're wondering about the mixing desk reference I'll tell you. Thommo lent me on a sort of permanent basis a Behringer mixing desk. I love it. It does everything I want it to do.
Then last saturday Thommo phoned me. he wanted it back. The bastard!
The bottom lip started going and there was a crack in my voice. I was filling up. I said "OK Thommo it is YOUR mixing desk after all."
"I'll be over in half an hour to pick it up."
Ten minutes later he's on the dog and bone again. "I've got another mixing desk you can have, I'll bring it over for you to use."
He brought the mixing desk. It was a fucking monster. I could hardly lift it. It would be OK if I was in a band with lots of people all needing inputs. But it's just me and Del right now. It has no effects built in.
I went to the music shop. An effects unit to plug in is £89 a new mixing desk of the mickey mouse variety, 4 channel Walt Disney desk c/w effects £99. I wanted my Behringer back.

Sunday night at the pub with Del he's looking at me and saying "What's the matter? You look really miserable. You look like someone who's lost a mixing desk, got another and wants the old one back."
"How did you know?"
"Ahha I know zese things Mr Bond."

Monday morning and I'm still grieving for the loss of my beloved mixing desk. That and the fact I nearly wrote off my car.
I was coming down the A1 from Lincoln doing about 70mph because my gear box is fucked and I can't get into 5th anymore, but that's another story. This Smart car zoomed past me. I didn't know they could go so fast. It was getting dark. Two miles down the road I saw red break lights flashing right in front of me. I slowed down a bit I couldn't really see what was happening. Then I realised they weren't just slowing down everyone had stopped dead. I slammed on the breaks. I just knew I was going to hit the car in front. There was no avoiding it. The ABS kicked it and the car juddered as it slowed. I stopped within 12 inches of the car in front only to check my rear view to see another car hurtling toward me from the back. Shit! Brace for impact. He found an opening in the traffic and just swerved to avoid me. Heart racing and hands shaking I looked ahead to the clearing traffic to see the stupid sod in the smart car had stopped dead in the middle of the road. No attempt to pull over to the side of the road at all. Not only that he had his door wide open and he was wandering around the dual carriage way aimlessly, cars swerving to avoid him. Then all of a sudden the bastard jumped into his car started it up and raced off down the road. I couldn't believe it. Well I can actually the world is full of nutters.

So I'm pissed off Monday morning and Thommo calls me.
"Mike the Behringer is no good to me, there's not enough channels for the band."
"Oh good!"
"Do you want to buy it off me?"
I was round his place of work in under ten minutes with a fist full of cash and the monster mixing desk to give back to him. I've got my baby back and this time it really is mine. Never to be taken away again. I'll give it a good home. I'll take care of it honest. I'll feed it an everything. I sound like Del but that's another story..............

So that's why I'm smugger than the smuggest person at a smug convention. And I'm Welsh. So is Del so is Brom Man, we're all pretty damned smug right now.

Rock on dudes

iPod now playing - Grand slam by Captain Smug and the Smuggettes

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Monday, March 21, 2005

Del time

Last night Del phoned me at 8:00pm "Are you coming to the pub?"
"OK." You see I don't take much persuading.
"Right I'll see you in half an hour at the pub."
"Half an hour?"I questioned.
"Yes really half an hour. That's half an hour in real time not Del time." says Del.
"So I'll see you in an hour then?" Aint I a cynic.
"NO really half an hour thirty minutes. I'll be there." he insisted.
"OK Del."
So I turned up fifteen minutes late. He wasn't there.
The man who can't be named turned up."NO Del then?"
"He said he'd be here in half an hour that was 45 minutes ago."
"That's normal."
"But he said it would be 30 minutes real time not Del time."
"Yes but Del has no concept of real time so when he says real time he really means Del time. His conception of real time is really a distorted version of his own Del time. He'll be here in 15 minutes."
"That'll be an hour then."
"Yes and that'll be Del time then."
Del turned up at 9:00 30 minutes late thus proving that Dels "realtime" is really Del time. i.e. not everyone elses time. It takes some getting used to. Del would drive a weaker person crazy with his time keeping. The man who can not be named and I have learnt to adjust our clocks to Del time. One day Del time will be an internationally recognised time zone. The Jamaicans have already taken Del time plus two hours as their officially recognised time. Come to think of it the Jamaicans run on Del time plus 48 hours.

iPod now playing - Carpet crawl by Genesis

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Wednesday, March 16, 2005

How Mad Do You Have To Be?

Where's the sense in it? My ex wife has been targetted along with others by vandals. They've smashed her front door. Thrown bricks through her kitchen window and today smashed her garden fence. She knows who's doing it, but the police need proof, as in video evidence. Otherwise they wont do anything. The vandals are these 12 and 13 year old boys last week the police caught them vandalising cars, but not before they'd caused £37,000 worth of damage to 20 cars in the same road on the same night. They were released. And so the vandalism continues.
Her neighbour heard a smash and ran out to see the boys running away from his car, the window was smashed. He chased them up the road as they ran they said they'd get him.
Two hours later the fire brigade were dowsing down his torched car.
The police advise people not to confront these little shits for fear of retribution. The world is increasingly becoming one of fear, fear of vandalism, of attack , of theft. The people are impotent, they are not allowed to fight back for fear of being prosecuted. The police do nothing. So what's the answer?
My next door neighbour took a base ball bat to a vandal last year. He got fined £400 for the privelige of protecting his property and convicted of grievous bodily harm. He broke the guys arm.
All the time nothing is done, these little shits think they are invincible and go on to more and more vandalism and other crimes. They laugh in the face of authority, they're too young to be prosecuted. The police do not frighten them.
There must be an answer.
I'm madder than a bag of snakes right now. How mad do we need to be before something is done?

iPod now playing - Don't look back in anger by Oasis

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Tuesday, March 15, 2005

The Funeral of the Foot

Five years ago Steven X left his house to go to work. He was never seen again. Despite a police search and a public appeal nothing was ever turned up.
Then two months ago an angler found a trainer he pulled it from the canal. It had a human foot still in it. DNA evidence revealed the foot belonged to the missing man.
His father lives near me he came into the shop a while back.
"We're having the funeral next week." he told me............

Look I'm sorry I have to apologise now but I can't help laughing. They're having a funeral for a foot.
Petal from the flower shop came running in this morning.
"Guess what?"
"What?"
"I've got to do the flowers for the funeral of the foot." she was laughing.
as she went on "Our standard coffin spray is four foot long,so that's going to be three foot too long isn't it. because they wont put a foot in a big coffin will they."
"Maybe they'll use a shoe box, do you think they prefer the Reebok shoe box with the hinged lid or the Nike shoe box where the lid comes off."
"It could be a blue peter coffin, Valerie Singleton and John Noakes knocking up a coffin out of a shoe box and sticky back plastic."
Sammy said "you know the body usually goes to the undertaker who puts make up on and dresses the corpse in his best clothes for burial, do you think they'll put the foot in a new trainer or something?"

Then it got out of hand somewhat with someone asking "Who's going to foot the bill?" and "will it be an open casket ceremony?" and "Surely they're not going to kiss the foot after it's been in the canal five years."
So Petal ran off giggling to make the nicest bouquet of flowers for the funeral of the foot.

iPod now playing - Wondrous Stories by Yes

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It's Frothy Man

Ever felt left out because everyone else has Frothy Coffee and you because you drink black coffee don't get it.
Well here's the answer.

Put your instant coffee and sugar into your cup, then a dash of the old boiling and start stirring vigourously. The mixture in the bottom of the cup will change colour going a lighter brown, keep stirring like your life depended on it. Then when it's about as light as it's going to get pour in the boiling water as normal.

Et voila the black coffee drinkers frothy coffee.

iPod now playing - Tangled up in Blue by Bob Dylan

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Monday, March 14, 2005

I went to the Cavendish pub which is a lot nearer to my home than my usual pub. I got talking to some Irish guys. One of them was a complete racist. "I hate the cunts" was his stock answer to anything. He looked at me and said "Your sitting there all calm and saying nothing, what the fucks wrong with you?"
"Nothing I'm usually calm."
"Are you Gay?"
"No."
"You look fucking gay with that hat."
In the other bar were loads of asians. One of them had brought a ghetto blaster and they were playing Bhangra music. The Landlord of the pub was getting pissed off. The Irish guys were swearing and cursing.
I decided to leave. I had better things to do than listen to Irish Tony shouting "I hate the cunts!" every two minutes.

iPod now playing - Roads to Moscow by Al Stewart

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Saturday, March 12, 2005

Gay Gregory

Last night was the first time in ages that I didn't have to tell Gay Gregory to "Fuck off".
He was otherwise engaged. It was a classic Desmond Morris moment. The band was playing and Gay Gregory was sitting there with his pint of Kronenberg wearing his flourescent yellow jacket when this cute girl zoned in on him. She was hot. It was so obvious she was gagging for him. The body language was everything. We were supposed to be watching the band but all eyes were on Gay Gregory and this new girl. We were waiting for him to tell her he was Gay. He didn't.
She gave him the eyes. She gave him those subtle little touches on his shoulder, she sat facing him. Dave The Clown said "She might as well write it in block capitals."
So we watched for thirty minutes while new hot girl tried her luck with Gay Gregory. Dave the Chef said "Someone ought to tell her."
There was a huge chorus of "NO!"
New hot girl meanwhile was flicking her hair back and laughing, running her fingers through her hair, licking her lips and leaning forward.
Even train spotter guy could have scored last night.

Suddenly the situation changed. Gay Gregory leant forward as if to kiss her and whispered something in her ear. She sat back. She folded her arms. She crossed her legs She looked the other way. Her friends friends across the table gave her the "What?" look.
New hot girl twirled her index finger close to her temple "Nutter".
A minute later she'd got her coat and was away.
Gay Gregory sat there with his Kronenberg and flourescent yellow jacket. It was the first time in a long while I haven't had to tell him to "Fuck Off!"

iPod now playing - Drive in Saturday by David Bowie

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Friday, March 11, 2005

OK So I'm not going to die just now

So I went to see my doctor. I was convinced my Kidneys were failing. I'm not a hyperchondriac but I had to find out. He laughed when I asked him if it was likely. I thought it was a valid question because the specialist told my father that his symptoms were due to his kidneys failing and toxin build up. So obviously being as I have the same condition as my father and I have the same symptoms.......... well you know what I'm saying. So I had to produce a urine sample. Ha ha I was wise to this and already had one ready prepared in the required specimen bottle. The doctor tested it on the spot and declared me fit water works wise. No sugar no proteins no createnin no something else which I can't remember......... oh yeah no traces of any halucinogenic drugs.
So I was sent to the hospital straight after to have blood tests. I didn't have to wait long. So they took an armful of blood after first asking me if I had a problem with having blood samples taken. No.
-Do you need to lie down after?
-Are you offering?
-Do you need a blind fold?
- NO bring it on. Stab me with your steely knives, let blood spill, I'll watch and laugh manically.
The results will be sent to my Doctor within one week. I should live.
Meanwhile the doctor weighed me. I weigh fourteen stone in all my clothes.
-You've got fat Mikel
-Don't be silly I'm not fat
-Do you realise you've put on 12 kilos in the last two years. That put's up your BMI.
-what to?
-25
-But 25 is good.
- not when you were 23. You need to exercise more. be careful what you're eating.
I mentioned it to the nurse taking blood.
-The Doctor says I need to exercise. but I'm not really a sporty person.
- You don't have to do sport just exercise enough to break into a sweat every now and then.
- What about sex then?
- Not right now I'm working.

I left and made my way to Furnitureland to look at coffee tables. I went through the big glass swing doors into the quiet library like atmosphere of the furniture show room. It was deserted and I wandered about the leather 3 piece suites and dinner tables then I noticed I was being stalked.I did a quick 90 degree turn and headed off toward the sideboards, my stalker nipped round the back of the recliner chairs and tried to head me off I had to VIF quickly (Veer off In Flight) I slipped behind a stand had a quick reccy and ducked into the kitchen displays. There was a man sitting at a desk, he looked up, he was obviously bored out of his skull.
"Can I help you?"
"Er no thanks."He didn't press it, he went back to his newspaper.
I looked through the gaps in the kitchen units and couldn't anyone. I started breathing easier and decided to continue my search for a new coffee table. I came out of the display and walked straight into my stalker. He's standing there leaning against a column his arm outstretched making a barrier so I couldn't pass.
It was gay Gregory.
"Hello Lover. What are you doing here? Checking out the beds? I'll help you try them out."
"No coffee tables if you must know."
"Ooooh a man who knows what he wants. You do it for me."
"Fuck Off Greg." I said marching away from him.
"Anytime lover......" he calls out after me." ....any time."
I head for the exit.

iPod now playing - Cloud bursting by Kate Bush

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Thursday, March 10, 2005

Jamaica Irie

We have an afro carribean shop near us. It sells yams, sweet potatos, melons, pineapples, plantains (or because Del doesn't want me to be pretentious, big green bananas).
So they've got the whole shop decked out with displays of fruit and veg. So why is no one buying any fruit and veg? Why don't they have customers walking in and coming out with carrier bags full of carribean goodies.
Why don't they have any customers?

Well actually they do. But they're not your usual customers you'd expect in an afro-carribean grocery store. They turn up in their VW Golfs complete with spoiler and undersill blue lighting. Wearing their hoodies and baseball caps and white trainers. Yep our Afro- carribean grocery is a mecca for the local chavs who sit outside the shop on the wall for hours waiting for them to open. Well they're Jamaican you see, and Jamaicans are a relaxed bunch of guys. They can't see the point in hurrying anything, so they might open at 9:00am they might open at 10:00am sometimes as late as 12:00am. But the chavs will be there on the door step waiting for the shop to open.
You see there's a problem here, you can not buy a big mac and fries at the afro carribean grocery. You can't even buy a bottle of blue sweet fizzy stuff. They sure as hell are not going in there for any afro hair styling products.

No because they don't sell any of this stuff. It's all a front. Every week the wheelie bin is full of all their unsold stock. Next week will be the same. No it's just a front for their drug business. That's what the chavs are coming for. To score their latest quarter of what ever is on special that day.

I might surprise the shop keeper and go in to buy a yam. That'll really fuck him up he wont even know the price.

iPod now playing - Desolation row by Bob Dylan

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Wednesday, March 09, 2005

Jamie Lee Curtis

Last night because of football, (Manchester United Lost 2:0 on aggregate) Paul didn't want to come to the music club, Sandra had a gig with Franco and Simon was ill with a bad cold the music club didn't happen. A phoned earlier to tell me V wanted to come so could I take my spare guitar. Ooops had to tell him that there was no music club this week. Did I tell you about V?

She's only fifteen and the daughter of a hippy friend of mine L. L was/is, no one can tell right now, is in a realtionship with M, who is an alcoholic. He goes on benders and disappears for days on end. L threw him out and said he was never coming back. but he does and she lets him, she picks up the pieces everytime.
V is very quiet. She seems very shy. But she is an enthusiastic musician (trainee). She amazed me at Christmas when we were all at Ls house and she played keyboard. I didn't realise she was that good. I've just been teaching her guitar. A, her father bought her a drum kit. So she's learning that as well. So she's a bit of an all rounder.
M plays guitar with R who gave me the Fostex. They made an album and V sings on it. She's very modest about that.
I like the way she keeps trying.

So I went to see Sandra and Franco play at The Three Horseshoes in Yaxley a village near Peterborough. They were terrible. On the way I surprised Jamie by turning up and dragging him out of the house. His Mother was having band practice at home. Did I tell you she's professional musician as well? She's not as good a guitarist as me. but she can sing like an Angel. Yes of course she can play guitar, but her playing is very twee. It's ever so nice and gentle and plinky plinky if you know what I mean. But she lacks impact. It's like she is afraid to play loudly, she's apologising before she starts.

We stayed for Sandras first set. At the interval I went to Sandra and suggested she gave her guitar some "welly", "stop fucking around play it like you mean it." Adam the lead guitarist with Leon heard me and came over "He's right you know, If I played like that the audience would start asking what was wrong. Don't be afraid to play loudly. Show some confidence."
"I know that." says Sandra.
It's very difficult to be critical of your best friends. I don't want to destroy any confidence they have. But there were a few things they did that need to be sorted out. Like starting a song with dual vocals straight from nothing. They sang out of tune. They need to play an introduction to get the note in their head before they sing. Either that or practice more.

It wasn't all bad though. Sandra sang an Alaniss Morrisette song "Hand in my pocket" with just Franco on guitar.It was fabulous. I looked round the pub and people were singing along. It was a very strong song for her. She needs to build on that.

Jamie asked to be taken home because he has school tomorrow. I think it was a lot to do with the fact one of his school teachers came in and said "hello " to him. he thought he'd better not stay until the end. So I took him home.

Tonight it's football again Arsenal are playing. So that's Del sorted for the night, I don't think we'll ever get this album recorded.
I shant even bother asking tonight. Football comes first.
I think I'll just grab a bottle of sparkly wine and go and call on Jamie Lee Curtis instead. We all have our fantasies.....................

iPod now playing - Sad eyed lady of the lowlands By Bob Dylan

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Monday, March 07, 2005

Dianes kitchen

Last night I was stuck with a dilemma. Do I walk half way across the city to go to the comedy club and see a bunch comedians and a band, then walk back all by myself in the cold? Of do I take a chance and go and see Del.

I took the chance. Del was there. So was the man who can not be named (J) and Tim (The Timernator).
J and The Timernator were building Dianes kitchen. This is the kitchen we all put our hands into our pockets to buy for them as a wedding present. I think my contribution bought them a shelf and a couple of drawers. When I arrived Del was playing on his computer.
You see Del had been allocated the role of asbentee overseer and entertainment. Basically J decided that Del was not best suited to actual work. At least none of your practical stuff. Yes he's incredibly entertaining when he's on a roll. he can make you laugh. But put a screwdriver in his hand he looks at it and says "What doI do with this?". So he was sent out of the way while J and The Timernator built the kitchen.

I arrived. "Can I help?"
"Er... we seem to have destroyed the vacuum cleaner." says J. "I think the Dyson is a casualty of war. Can you fix it?"
"I'll have a look.............Hells Bells what have you done to it?"
They'd been picking up plaster dust with the Dyson.
Now while the Dyson is a work of art and a design classic and a much sort after ascessory of modern living. It's pretty shit as a vacuum cleaner. Don't get me wrong I love Dyson vacuum cleaners. I encourage everyone to buy them. Why? Because they go wrong so often and so we get to fix them and charge mucho dinero for the privelige.
So I took Dels vacuum cleaner out into the garden.
J shouted out the window "Is it Land fill?"
"I haven't read the last rites yet. There's still a chance we can save it."
The filters were completely clogged with plaster dust. The cyclone was clogged. By the time I'd finished unblocking it I was clogged with dust. But I got it working again.

iPod now playing - Sweet Virginia by The Rolling Stones

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Wednesday, March 02, 2005

Mr Nobrain and Mr Dodgy

So I'm in my shop and in walks Mr and Mrs NoBrains. They both stink of stale sweat and cigarettes. Mrs Nobrain is pushing a baby buggy in which sits a small child with a trail of green snot running from it's nose which it periodically licks from it's lips.
"Got any bags?"
"What sort of bags?"
"Dirt Devil bags?"
"What model?"
"Issa dirt devil innit."
"OK if you recognise the bag they're all down there on the right in that basket."
Mr Nobrain goes to the left.
"They're behind you." It's like a bleedin' pantomime.
He doesn't turn round to look behind him he looks up and to the left.
"No you've got to turn around."
He turns toward me and looks blank, as if he can't quite take on board what "Behind you" means. So I point. Perhaps he can understand sign language.
I notice he's wearing a white England baseball cap, it's frayed all round the edges. It matches everything else about him.
Pointing does no good. He's there, mouth wide open, looking in every direction except the direction I'm pointing.
Mrs Nobrain, face like a pizza, meanwhile is shuffling from one foot to the other. "Come on Shane, let's go."
Thank you God! It had to be. His name had to be Shane.
Shane Nobrain has a ring to it don't you think?

Shortly after Mr Dodgy came in asking if I wanted to buy a DVD. He's Italian.
"Is originale." he say, " issa thurteee nyna pounds inna da store."
"It's a copy." I tell him.
"No issa originale for sure."
"So how come the label is peeling off and it says recordable DVD underneath the label."
Then came the Monty Python moment when he takes back the dvd smoothes back the label and says "No it doesn't."
"Yes it does."
"Where he say recording DVD?"
"Under the label."
"You no see. issa good DVD. Issa toppa quality."
"No thanks."

iPod now playing - Homburg by Procol Harum

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Insurance Claim No: 5


This is the last insurance claim picture. There are more but I'm bored now. IN fact I'm so bored I can't even think of a caption for this one. Actually I'm having a lot of trouble thinking anyway right now. So you can make up your own captions for this picture. Posted by Hello

iPod now playing - The Poacher by Ronnie Lane

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Tuesday, March 01, 2005

Insurance Claim No: 4


Now would be a great time to get out of the pick up truck. Just shows how tough a tow bar can be. Posted by Hello

iPod now playing - Silver machine by Hawkwind

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