I better be careful

CaughtAccording to BBC News bloggers are being arrested all over the place.   Sure, right now it is for what the authorities percieve as causing civil unrest.   How long before I get arrested before causing people to riot in the desperate search for something actually funny?

It’s an interesting twist though when you think about it.   Let’s face it, the Internet provides this supposed shield of anonymity, it’s supposed to be the last bastion of free speech and expression.   It comes to something when simply voicing your opinion on what you view to be a violation of human rights results in your arrest and possible jail time.

I am lucky, I am British, live in Germany, my webserver is with a Polish company and the server is based in Germany somewhere.   I have no issues really, beyond normal legality of course.   I am rarely controversial and will err on the side of humour when at all possible.   That said, I have the option to blog about pretty much what I want without fear of persecution for my beliefs….Every time I post I open myself up to ridicule and choose to do so, and that is pretty much the worst I have to worry about.

It beggars belief that some of these “Nations” feel that their very society could be at risk by the actions of a few people voicing an opinion.   That doesn’t smack to me of a group of people that are entirely confident that their actions would stand up to worldwide scrutiny.   Lets face it, human rights organisations are exposing violations of human rights at a far higher frequency than any single blogger can achieve.   Maybe they feel that, by censoring the people living amongst them, they can dismiss any outsiders opinion as simply misunderstood cultural differences.

It makes no sense if you apply even the smallest amount of logic.   Arresting someone for writing things like this will draw far more attention than simply letting them get on with it.   It is by no means the same thing, but back in the 80s a song was banned in the UK…Relax by Frankie Goes to Hollywood…it was probably destined for the top 10 and in fact had topped out at number 6.   Banning it instantly made it number 1 for 5 weeks.   It is no different with these blogs…leave them alone and only a few (percentage of the world wise anyway) people will read it.   Arrest and incarcerate the writer and you bring them infamy and half the planet now want to see what was so bad.

Ahh, I see what I did there…logical politics…an oxymoron if ever there was one.

I have absolutely no idea where I am going with this really, I started off with every intention of cracking a joke about my terrible writing style and pending arrest, but realised real quick that this topic pisses me off.   There certainly isn’t much I can do about it, if anything.   I would like to think that, if I could, I would though.

The biggest reported jail sentence give for this is 8 years…that is from one country prosecuting a blogger.   Seeing as I have “spoken out” now about more than one country (technically…although I don’t name them), I could be put away for longer than your average murderer.

Makes you think doesn’t it.

I am off to find somewhere suitable to hide.   Oh, and don’t worry, my next post won’t be anywhere near as serious….I don’t guarantee funny, but I can definately say it won’t be so serious.

Oh computer…

Butt End!An extra post for today, based completely on my main PC taking a dive into the depths of hades.   This is my take (read butcher job)  on O Captain! my Captain, by…whoever wrote it originally.

 

 

 

 

O computer! my computer! our fearful trip is done,
The case has weather’d every download, the prize we sought is won,
The RIA is near, the sirens I hear, the people all downloading,
While follow links the steady torrent, the client grim and daring;
But O surge! surge! surge!
O the broken drops of components,
Where on the floor the Computer lies,
Fallen cold and dead.

O Computer! my Computer! rise up and hear the bells;
Rise up — for you the card is f*cked — for you the PSU shrills,
For you the  hammer and ribbon’d wreaths — for you the  bin a-beckons,
For you  he calls, the  pissed  off  Dave,  his  angry face spitting,
Here Computer! dear psu!
The  death beneath your case!
It is some dream that on the floor,
You’ve fallen cold and dead.

My Computer does not answer,  its leds are  off and still,
My psu does not feel  the charge,  it has no pulse nor will,
The  case is anchor’d safe and sound, its voyage closed and done,
From fearful trip the victor  power comes in with object won;
Exult O shores, and ring O bells!
But I with mournful tread,
Walk the deck my Computer lies,
Fallen cold and dead.

I know, pretty crap, but it is all I can muster given the trauma of my PC melting down when I turned it on this morning.   Monitor 2 – Dead, Graphics Card – Dead, Motherboard/CPU – Dead, PSU – Dead.  

Simply put – Technology FAIL

Damnit

Qualified pilots do not intelligent men make…

HarrierWhen I lived in Germany as a kid, we lived at RAF Gutersloh.   It was a bloody huge base and often ran joint exercises between the differing allied armed forces.   Sometimes they were ground based and more often than not they were aerial dogfights.

During one of these huge aerial exercises, pilots from the UK, US, Russia and a number of other air forces were involved in huge dogfights and things were going pretty well.   Some fantastic manoeuvers were taking place over the base on occasion.   It was a hell of a spectacle.

Now obviously, I wasn’t there during the pilots rest times, but the officers mess was reportedly full of Top Gun’esque testosterone filled tomfoolery, when bets started being made.

Now to explain, a barrel roll occurs when an object (usually an airplane or roller coaster) makes a complete rotation on its longitudinal axis while following a helical path, approximately maintaining its original direction. The G-force is kept positive (but not constant) on the object throughout the maneuver, commonly not more than 2-3 G, and no less than 0.5 G. (Thanks Wikipedia).

So the pilots were in the officers mess, presumably drinking expensive whiskey and smoking cuban cigars or something, when some bright spark challenged the others to perform a barrel roll on takeoff.   This means that they would literally wait until they were slightly beyond wing clearance from the ground, and roll.

So the following day, the Russian MIG pilots head off and perform their role…thereby laying down the gauntlet to the rest….the bet was well and truly on.   Next up, the US air force do their thing..no problem.   Followed by the RAF Tornado pilots….all good.

When up to the runway steps the mighty Harrier Jump Jet.   An aircraft designed for vertical takeoff and short runways.   It has short, stubby wings by comparison to the rest and is not really designed for manoeuverability as flexibility.   So the little aircraft that could…..couldn’t and the pilot, upon reaching takeoff speed, gets up just high enough to clear his wings and begins the roll.   Cut to 5 seconds later and 40 million pounds of high quality aircraft becomes about 50 quid for the scrap merchant to tow it away.

You have to wonder what was going through the pilots head…I mean other than almost the runway.   Just to add to the end of this, the pilot walked away unscathed.   Noone really knew how, but he was one very lucky guy.   He was discharged from the Air Force with terrible rapidity, but still pretty lucky all things considered.

Ahh yes, being a kid on and around RAF bases was fun at times…sure, you had to be pretty disciplined in case your Dad ended up in shit because of you, but it was where we got to fine tune our (already) dry sense of humour.   It was where checking under your car for bombs was a regular and somewhat exciting time…where armed guards would greet you whenever you entered the base.   It’s funny what you become blase about really.   I never saw any danger in any of this stuff, I even used to help Dad check under the car each morning.

I say it’s funny what you become blase about as I was responsible for at least 2 bomb alerts when I was at school.   The first was completely accidental…the 2nd not so.

For my first bomb alert, I was due to stay at a friends for the weekend, and for some reason felt the need to take my alarm clock with me along with my clothes etc.   As I wasn’t really thinking, I left my bag under one of the workbenches in the woodwork class.   Alarm clock…ticking…unattended bag.   All the hallmarks of a panic situation.   Not so for the guys and gals of the bomb squad though as they brought my bag out and blew it up in the school field.   I bloody liked that clock too…it was a Liverpool one :-(

Now the second time I was involved in a bomb alert was not quite so much of an accident.   We were trying to think of ways to bunk off school….whilst actually being at school.   In a normal school this would pose a number of logistical issues, but at a forces school, opportunities were abound.   I essentially recreated my accidental bomb alert…only with an alarm clock and bag that I didn’t really care for very much.   After a little coaxing, we persuaded someone to mention the trigger phrase to one of the teachers.

“Whose bag is that Sir?   It has been there all morning”

Cue school evacuation to the playground and the bomb disposal guys and gals turning up at a hell of a rate.   We were all trying to stifle sniggers as the robot brought the bag out.   It’s not like you see in tBomb robothe films or TV shows..the robot moves terribly slow and it took almost 35 minutes to bring the bag to the safe zone where it was “safely exploded”.   It then took 2 hours to completely sweep the school for any other devices.

I think we left for home about 20 minutes after we were given the all clear to re-enter the school.

Now don’t get me wrong, I don’t condone acting like a moron and doing this stuff, but it was the norm for this sort of stuff to happen, and being young and foolish…well, it all seemed like a big laugh.   I like to think that I wouldn’t do anything like this in todays climate and I am pretty sure I wouldn’t.

That said, bomb disposal robots and controlled explosions are way cool.

heh

Is senility contagious?

The Man Who Didn't Know About RunningI hope not, although recently I seem to have caught an accute case of it. I had a great idea for a blog post on Saturday, but between having the idea and screwing my ankle (AGAIN!!!), by the time I got home I had forgotten it.

This is happening with monotonous regularity at the moment too. I have recently taken to walking out of my living room (the real one, not the bar downstairs) and into the kitchen…only to instantly forget why I had done it.

And what is it with that nagging feeling you get, like you have forgotten soething or need to be somewhere….only to remember….JUST AFTER IT IS TOO BLOODY LATE!!!??!!! Damnit.

I would like to attribute this to something interesting like drug abuse or at least a frontal lobotomy. Unfortunately though, I can only really attribute it to age.

Dear Mind

I am only 34 years old, please stop screwing with me and allow me to remember my name, address and if I am hungry or not.

Please stop hiding my keys and forcing me to write shopping lists for anything more than 3 items.   Help me remember phone numbers like I used to, or at least to remember my own phone number for more than a couple of days.

When I login to my online banking to see my account, please don’t make me login a 2nd time 1 second after logging out, just to check what the balance actually was.

It would be nice if I could leave my apartment, with the keys in my hand, and not have to stare at my hand for a full minute before plucking up the courage to close the door.

2 years ago I didn’t even need a notebook in meetings, now I have to write the meeting room number and location ON my bloody notebook so I remember which room when I get there.   If you could sort that out I would be grateful.

And finally, I would like very much to … ummm … sod it … you get the point.

Kind regards in advance of your co-operation

Dave

I don’t know if I will get a reply or not, but it has to be worth a go.

Spammage

SPAMI know we are living in what closely approximates a “Big Brother” state. But some of the spam emails I recieve lead me to wonder if these spammers are not spammers, but people with access to cameras in my apartment that monitor my every move.

Some of the emails I have recieved recently:

Viagra
Ok, so everyone gets these things with their clever useage of numbers and spaces to still adequately spell Viagra or Cialis. I wasn’t aware of any particular erectile dysfunction of mine…I still regularly recieve the “Morning Glory” that almost all blokes are plagued with from a tender age. That said, it has been a while, so maybe the pressure of performing would be too much for “Little Dave” (not an ironic moniker unfortunately). Maybe I really do need the benefits of either (or maybe both) of these wonder drugs.

Hair restoration
Ok, Ok, so I may be suffering a little (read..a lot) “early onset male pattern baldness” (I love that statement for some reason), but can these miracle cures really work. Is it wise to spread a mixture of elephant dung, lima scrotum and dodo vomit onto my increasingly glinting pate? Does the prospect of hair growing once more on the desolate barren wasteland of my head warrant smelling like a decomposing corpse for an indeterminate period of time? Sadly yes….

Lose weight
I will admit to being of the “Fuller Figure” body type. And yes, I could stand to lose a few pounds (by few I mean of course a number to the power of something). Here was me thinking that I should exercise more regualarly and take care of my diet, when all I really need to do is take a course of tablets at the low low price of…well…my dignity really.

Shoot like a pornstar
I am not sure I like where this is going…I may be forced to place a call to the Samaritans at this rate. Lets see, I can’t get it up, have no hair and am fat. Now apparently, if I do manage to get it up, my “output” (so to speak) is not up to standard either. Holy crap, it’s a wonder I leave the apartment. Unless it is some kind of firearms training where an elite team of super spies operate under the guise of pornstars. Each with a new and interesting kind of gadget implanted into their bodies that turn them into super weapons. I can see it now, I should patent the idea immediately. I can see the merchandise now – The team from MI69. The possibilities are endless….although I would have to be careful with the PC brigade for the rights to the kids cartoon version…

Anyway, all I can say to these spammers is…how in the blue hell do you know this much about me??

I am going to be ok though, I was just informed that I have won at least 2 lotteries that I don’t remember entering, my long lost friend, Prince Kufti-Namba from Zimbabwe would like to pay me substantially for looking after some cash for him and someone has given me a surefire way to protect my new found wealth by investing in a recession proof business.

Oh, and I can get a matching summer bra AND thong for â??14

Good times.

Nuts?

kingore kapow

So there is a school of thought that American guys are nuts….and possibly a little gullible. Now, I can only speak from experience and conclude that they are generally no more so than any other guys.

That said, there is a particular group that have been known to frequent my living room from time to time….that have been coming here for some time.

Let me explain a couple of things first. There is a gentleman who is a regular, he is an Irishman and we shall call him M.

Now M is a very nice guy, who has a reputation that generally precedes him. He is generally considered to be the type of person that you don’t fuck around with. It doesn’t detract from him being a good guy, but for the love of all things holy, do not get on his bad side. I can safely say that I am fortunate to be on his good side (at least until he reads this).

Now, he has a particular issue with the word “Awesome”, especially when used by American guys. This issue led to a statement of intent being issued. The statement was something along the lines of:

“If any of you Americans say awesome again…I will kick you in the nuts”.

Now M is a man of his word and suffice to say that the Americans he was with at the time learned this the hard way.

Fast forward to a week ago, one of the original group of American guys is heading back stateside and is out on his last night in Frankfurt. He is trying his damndest to get as many Americans as possible to tell M what an awesome time they are having in Frankfurt. Leading to a high number of guys folded up in agony, strewn around the area.

Now myself and M were chatting, when this guy comes up and gets in on the conversation. He was explaining the “game” as he called it. During the explanation he says “So I keep telling these guys to go up to M and say Awes…..omething like that 8-O ”

Now M decides that half saying something still meets the criteria and informs the guy that as he only half said it, he will only kick him in the left nut. Before the guy can move – whack- M kicks out. I distinctly remember the guy squeaking “that was the left one too” before hitting the floor.

Eventually he recovers and tells me the story of playing the “game” the week before. Apparently he persuaded some huge monster of a biker from Colorado to say the “A word”. So off the guy trots, with his equally big friend, and goes up to M…a guy he has never met, nor been introduced to before. He delivers the now immortal words “Hey man, I just wanna say what an awesome time we are having here”

*whack*

The guy keels over…”What the fuck was that for man?”. “You said the word” says M. “What word? Awesome?”

*whack*

And so it continued. The story goes that the guy said it a total of 5 times, getting whacked progressively harder each time. Eventually, a little nonplussed and certainly none too happy. Biker dude and his friend decide that enough is enough and start claiming how they will kick the crap out of M. M, being M, grabs hold of the guy and gets out his wallet.

“I will pay you 300 euros right now, so that we can go over there and I can thump you and yer mate”

It is at this point that the 2 guys realise that a single M has them outnumbered. I mean, lets face it, if you are a big guy (he was) and you have an equally big friend stood next to you (he did)…what are the odds that a single Irishman will threaten you, and offer to pay for your trouble…if that person couldn’t back it up?

It is fair to say that these guys beat a hasty retreat and have never returned, to the best of my knowledge. It’s a shame – they are definitely the sort of guys that you want around….the money making opportunities are enormous.

Now…if I can just find some more Americans and my steel toecapped boots………

Writers block..

Writers Block (8)

Now, I am under no illusions about my ability to call myself a writer, but I find myself suffering from that heinous of afflictions….writers block.

I made a decision that I would attempt to post something every day this month, without fail and up until now I have done ok.   I regularly page vomit (how I describe my “style”) stuff that happened to me or my family in the past, but I quite like things that are happening to me, and the people around me, now.   I think the blog may have scared people away.   Noone is giving me any blogworthy…stuff.   And sadly, I just don’t live an interesting enough life.

So I implore any of you that know me, DO SOMETHING…..well, something interesting at least.   If it could be deeply embarassing and involve copious amounts of alcohol, misunderstandings, sex, possibly some form of STD and a woodland animal or two…then I would be eternally greatful.   Although right now I would take a critique of the priests latest sermon from your bloody bible group.

I have even shamelessly googled cures for writers block, googled….for information…..ME!!!   Whatever next, sending an email through an email client…the world just can’t handle this kind of radical thinking.   Funnily enough there are literally thousands of ideas on how to cure the block.

Here are some of the suggestions:

Step Away From the PC. Walk around your block and find (write it down, please) ten things you’ve never seen before. When you return home, write them into a story/poem.
I tried this and realised that that there is very little in around my block that I haven’t seen before….Now, if it was to find things I haven’t done, that would be different.   Although I would be tempted to try whatever it was immediately and therefore chalk that off the list.   A nice idea though, but it isn’t helping me find subject matter and certainly doesn’t involve woodland animals.

Distract with Social Conscientiousness. Find an injustice and right it. It doesn’t have to be a major world event, merely something nagging at you that you’ve always meant to do something about. Fix this nagging subconscious guilt and you’ll open the gates.
Ok ok, so the pentagon isn’t taking my calls, the guy from BP must have lost his Blackberry or something and the Ozone layer resolutely refuses to pull itself together.   What is a guy to do

Flirt. How long has it been since you fluttered your eyelashes shamelessly at someone for no reason other than joie de vivre? If the answer did not immediately spring forth, leave this page and go attend to that at once. Sublimation is key here.
See now heres the thing, flirting…in the hands of an amateur such as myself, could end up being dangerously close to stalking…or at the very least some form of harrassment.   Whilst I could probably find a lot of things to write about in jail…people called Bubba and the ever increasing soreness of my rear-end probably will hold limited interest to a very *select* audience.

Remember, We Die. “Memento Mori”. Make it your mantra. Scribble it on a post it note and stick it on your monitor. Whatever seriousness you think has you in its grasp, like dust, will soon enough be carried by winds into infinity. We are small, and what lies beyond is infinite. Use this as an anchor to the present whenever you are taking yourself too seriously, and as a strategy to connect you into the spiritual realm beyond this existence. That realm being, ironically, filled with the very components that inspire us to ever write at all.
Seriously?!?   Remember, We Die…this is a cure for writers block?   Depression and black thoughts do not a humourous post make.   “Remember, You Are Alive” could work better, but even that…AS A MANTRA remember…could cause you to spiral into a “woe is the world, why do I live” condition which probably ends up as the first bit and a possible suicide attempt.

Christ, if only I wasn’t blocked I could write about this…

Oh

:-D


Plagiarism

Are you a Copy-Cat?

Over at [15 Minute Lunch] there is a regular spot about google searches. Obviously my blog is relatively new, and doesn’t have all that much content, or visitors….

Nevertheless, I like the idea of seeing what people are looking for when they stumble across my little entry into the blogosphere. So with that in mind I regularly review the search terms. Now most of them so far are pretty dull (even to me). People hit my page when searching about Germany, Lee Evans, laughing and for some reason I can’t quite figure out….Steve.

When all said and done, I am not entirely surprised these days to discover a large number of people getting here by searching for “Drunk”

However, a number of them concerned me slightly. I mean who is it that searches for this stuff? And should their nurse really not be monitoring their net useage closer? Anyway, in the true spirit of plagiarism, let me address some of the issues plaguing my visitors…

punishment for joyriding
Well, in all likelihood, you will be banned from driving. Obviously this is the best deterrent available known to the police force and lawmakers…

“You coming out car stealing tonight Jon?”
“Naah, I can’t. I’m banned innit”

an old film when a group of friends from a club sneak into there broth
This is a difficult one, but I am guessing it would National Lampoons Scottish Soup Vacation, where a group of friends….naah I can’t do it.

iv morphine drip theft
Are you a police officer searching the internet for patterns of theft that can be linked back to a potential subject? Maybe you are the thief that is looking for surefire ways to snaffle the “gear” without anyone noticing. Either way, think of the poor patient…it may be me, and I wouldn’t take too kindly to the removal of my wonder juice should I be in hospital at the time.

bar drinks served in drips syringe
I have known a few bars that server smaller measures than they are supposed to, but very few would be able to get away with serving drips. That said, I was given a shot of whiskey delivered by a (needleless) syringe a number of weeks back. The effect was not great, not least of all as I hate whiskey…personally I don’t see a future in it – Unless the syringe holds a liter of beer…maybe this exists already in some Medical Universitys Student Union bar.

i went over a red light at a pelican crossing how to know if there are cameras on it
Most people would have checked in their rearview mirror for the tell-tale flash. Speed cameras are not usually known for subtlety. Neither are traffic cameras, they are huge monstrosities…we could go for a predictive analysis based on the relative size of cameras in the area, along with examples of known camera based traffic light locations and work out an algorythm to determine optim……….screw it – Just remember the flashy light thing..

temperature in frankfurt on saturday 7th june
It was a beautifully sunny day, temperatures over 28 degrees with light showers in the late evening. I can’t quite imagine why you would want to know…person living in the USA. Could this be an internet stalker thing? Did you get told something by someone over here that you can’t quite trust?   Was it me?   I lie a lot…maybe.

wolfie ass traffic
I honestly don’t know what to say. I mean sure, there will probably be a punk band somewhere with this for a name, but what else could have caused this search? And why for the love of all things spangly would you visit a blog based on these search terms. I worry for you my friend, I am also concerned that there is a road somewhere full to bursting with fast moving pictures of my ass. I think I was just sick a little in my mouth…

honesty is the best policy speech
Now, I have had about 10 hits based on searches that are referring to this. I am seriously assuming that you would like to show a speech to someone to highlight how being honest is indeed the best policy.   Clearly you wouldn’t be looking to nick ideas from people?? Wouldn’t that kind of defeat the purpose? Which is why I am glad that the 10 people searching, were clearly all of the mind to use what they found as an educational tool…giving full and frank credit to their source. And if any of you have used any of my stories in your speech…I want royalties :-)

buy strong german applekorn
Is there another kind? That said, as a pastime this comes highly recommended and trust me, if you get the Berentzen brand you can’t go wrong….you can go into a coma..but that isn’t the same as wrong ;-)

More to follow in about 6 months when the real weirdos will have had time to get to my site in bizarre ways.

I don't have an alcohol problem

John White. Web site http://www.whitebeertravels.

I drink…I get drunk…I fall down…no problem!

A few years ago, I was working in Cardiff and had a South African colleague called Thys. Great guy and a great laugh. As he was South African he was able to get Sambuca Gold and Aftershock that… didn’t conform to european standards shall we say. They were somewhat stronger than their British counterparts, and the Aftershock had the added bonus of crystalising when the lid was off, which increased the strength of the stuff.

So it was with much merriment that a friend and I decided to consume a bottle of Sambuca Gold and a bottle of Aftershock Red before going out. I don’t know why we did it, we were perfectly sober when we started drinking…it can’t have taken much to get us to the “good idea at the time” stage.

All I know with any certainty is that a few people turned up at the house, more drinking was done and the decision made to go to the pub. Upon arriving at the pub, I ordered a round for everyone. The barmaid asked me for the money, so reached into my back pocket to get my wallet. It was only when I tried to open the wallet to extract cash that I (along with everyone else) noticed I was trying to pay with my stereo remote control.. Unfortunately this is not a currency widely adopted in the UK and I was forced to perform a veritable stagger back to the house to collect my wallet.

It was also around this time that a friend and I decided that a “Leo”* was called for. We spent the bulk of it drinking lager at the Snooty Fox. At some point we decided to move onto Harvey Wallbangers, which we decided to use as chasers to the beer. Then, my friend decided that he would also quite like to do Tequila shots, which we chose to be the chaser of the chaser. Unfortunately, I hate the taste of Tequila, so I needed either beer or more Harvey Wallbanger to wash it down with. So the order was changed. Tequila shot, followed by Harvey Wallbanger, followed by a lager chaser.

It was with no small measure of shock that we were plastered by around 5pm. I remember Sarah driving past us both, me leaning on the wall and waving and my friend attempting to do the same. Unfortunately the wave took him a little more off-balance than me, and he slid down the wall and onto the floor….where he stayed for a little while.

My fave story though from around this time is that of a house party that a few friends and I were invited to. Having nothing better to do, and probably not really thinking, we arrived at the party precisely at the invited start time. Now this is normally a mistake in party attendance terms, as being the first people there tends to make the initial part quite dull. Still, in an effort to gee it up, I started handing round a bottle of Smirnoff Black Vodka that I had taken as my bottle of choice in the “bring a bottle” stakes.

What I failed to notice was that, as I passed the bottle to the next person, the bottle was simply passed around, without anyone drinking any…until it came back to me. Essentially, this meant that consumed a 1 litre bottle of this stuff in a little under 40 minutes. I was “reasonably well oiled” by the time the party really started going strong. A friend arrived with a bottle of some Vodka that a Russian visitor had given to him and the same pass the bottle strategy ensued…although at least this time there was one other person actually drinking the stuff.

Suffice to say that in less than 2 hours, having consumed 1.5 liters of Vodka straight from the bottle, I was a little worse for wear. I decided to go outside for some fresh air and, in a vain attempt, to clear my head. I ended up kneeling down on the driveway where I could hear the plans being concieved to go outside and strip me…just for fun you understand.

My overriding issue at this point was not, as some might imagine, being stripped naked for a laugh. No no no, my only issue was that if they wanted to strip me, that would involve moving me…something I definately did not want to happen.

Most of the rest of the night is a blur, although I definitely remember being put into a taxi, complete with head hanging out of the window like a pet dog….taken to my mates house and placed in the toilet with my head positioned over the bowl. Just at the point I was starting to fall asleep there, Simon decided to pour a bucket of ice water over my head.

After the initial shock, the effect was instant sobriety and we headed back to the party.

Genius

*Leo = Leo Sayer = All dayer = All day at the pub

Sky hooks..or the life and times of the galactically stupid

A spirit levelNow I am, like anyone, liable to fall foul of a practical joke or wind-up occasionally. It happens, maybe I am tired, maybe drunk…but I like to think that I can spot them fairly rapidly and more often than not during the delivery.

I am blessed with the ability to do “deadpan delivery” of jokes or wind-ups. This gives enough problems to native English speakers…but the fun you can have with non-native English speakers is great. Except Germans…..they simply think you are being serious and then insist on having you ruin the gag by explaining, at length, twice. Actually come to think of it, that may just be the greatest wind-up escape ever….fair play Herman, fair play sir!

Some of my faves are the ones where you have people going for a long time before you have to let them know it’s a wind-up. Now obviously, most people have used the old “long weight”, or “tartan paint” lines, or will have at least heard about them. There was a particular guy I worked with straight out of school and he was not the sharpest tool in the shed. We all, at various times, sent him to the local B and Q store to fetch:

  1. Striped paint
  2. Glass hammer
  3. Left handed screwdrivers
  4. Left handed screws for said screwdrivers
  5. Left handed spanner
  6. Rubber nails (for use with the a rubber hammer)
  7. Long weight (Over 2 hours before he returned to declare that they are out of stock, but would 2 short weights do?)
  8. Tin of elbow grease
  9. Replacement bubbles for the spirit level as ours was cracked

My favourite one for this guy though, was when someone had left a caravan in the main entrance, and we sent him to find the ignition keys in the lost key box… I would like to say that he got the jokes and was just playing along, but alas it was not the case.

I do remember phoning a friend a number of years ago and asking for his help. I explained at great length that I wanted to install a satellite dish, but the landlord wouldn’t allow anything to be mounted to the wall. I tried to use a pole in the garden, but the buildings were too high around it and I couldn’t get a signal. I seem to recall taking around 20 minutes to fully explain the dilemma, before I asked him for the favour.

Me: “I have just been to B&Q to get some, but they are out of stock….maybe the B&Q near you will have some”

CP: “What are you on about?”

Me: “Oh crap, yeah sorry – Sky hooks…I need them about 2 inch across and about an inch thick…can you check it out for me and call me back?”

CP: “Fine..hang on…let me get a pen”

CP: “Ok, go”

Me: “So I need 2 sky hooks…2 inches across and as close to 1 inch thick as you can get”

About an hour or so later he called me back and let rip with a combination of laughter and words that would make a sailor blush…