Thursday, April 30, 2009

Up The Workers #1

We're about to celebrate Mayday here, when everybody used to have to parade through the street chanting “Ceau-şes-cu!!” and “Hurrah, yes, let’s do it in 4 ½!!” (The Great Conducător’s clever twist on the Stalinist 5-year plan). Many now prefer just have a bar-b-que and to play a bit of footie. But I’m a bit “old school” in believing that work should be celebrated. However, some people who claim to be hard workers are in fact the biggest slackers of all. When I worked in the health service there was a woman who spent her time carrying a piece of paper around, and if you asked her to do anything she’d say she was busy; it took 6 months before they realised she did nothing, and even then they couldn’t sack her. Dyhurr. Here are some other lazy arses who get on my tits:

Bruce Springsteen

Springsteen often sings about the hard-working, blue-collar life, but does he really live up to that? Take a look at “Born in the USA”; I have, and I’ve counted more than 20 times where he sings “born in the USA", and always to the same tune – he simply can’t be bothered to think up new lines, he’s more repetitive than that Philp F*****g Glass!! He’s never done a real day’s work in his life - no wonder they call him “The Boss”.

Karl Marx

No Good Boyo has cleverly called Friedrich Engels “The Andrew Ridgeley of Communism”, but was Karl really much more of a grafter? The Communist Manifesto pretty much writes itself, I’d have thought. “Workers of the world unite”: yeah, obviously they will, and then go on strike most likely. And “International finance is doomed to collapse”, well that’s just happened hasn’t it, and that didn't take a lot of effort - so thanks for nothing, Beardy.

James Brown

The “Hardest Working man in Show Business”, they used to call him. As I’ve said before, Soul Brother No. 1 was like a brother to me, but sometimes you even have to criticise family. He used to collapse in exhaustion on stage during every show and get one of his attendants to help him up again. That’s nothing. I collapsed 13 times when trying to do the “Mashed Potato” at aunt Doris’s Christmas party last year, and nobody bothered to help me up. He needs a bloody good haircut too. Even a bloody bad haircut would be an improvement.

Worker Ants

Shirker ants, more like. How hard can it be carrying a bit of leaf around?? So what if it’s 3 times your body weight, it’s still only a bit of leaf. And I know that ants make honey (that’s bees. Ed.) but so does Sainsbury’s. I’m not impressed. The queen ant on the other hand is a member of royalty and has to work hard to look composed and radiant whenever she emerges from the hive (bees again. Ed.) and I reckon she does a marvellous job, Gawd bless yer Ma’am!

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Gadjo in the Dragons Den #1

That Dragon’s Den programme was great – is it still running? I’d like to be on it, and show those fat cats a couple of revolutionary ideas that’ll change the world that I’ve thought of, and they’re going to start saying “alright, Mr Dilo, I‘m prepared to invest £50,000 in your idea for 40% of the profits” and stuff even before I’ve finished the demonstration. Even if they don’t I’ve already had an offer Mr Isaac Ummintorobyou formerly of the Central Bank of Nigeria who’s got a large amount of money he needs to send to Europe right now. People have called me stupid before but here’s where I show them:

Balloon Modelling Kit

We’ve all seen those street performers who bend balloons into the shapes of rabbits, dogs, spaceships, etc. Great, aren’t they. But even top-flight entertainment like that needs a new direction once in a while. This is why I’ve come up with the All-New Balloon Modelling Kit. The twist is that you model small animals into the shapes of balloons. See, it’s the other way around – neat, eh?! The kit comes with a rabbit, a dachshund, a tabby cat, a stoat (or a weasel, depending on availability) and a few hamsters to get you started. The animals will all be docile and reasonably robust. The balloon you make is of course entirely your own choice, though you’d be advised to make one that’s fairly appropriate to your raw materials. Dachshunds of course lend themselves to long thin balloons, and I’m training the cats to puff themselves up by holding their breath for the small round ones and the rabbits to keep their ears down for the pear shaped ones. I'm expecting the hamsters to be more versatile. Believe me, this is going to be a hit at children’s parties – just watch their faces!!

Testicle Recognition System

Fingerprinting has been with us for a long time, but the average criminal can get round it by application of a little battery acid. Iris recognition systems are supposed to be really accurate, but most criminals’ eyes are really squinty like Clint Eastwood's in Escape From Alcatraz or else they wear sunglasses, and then it’s not going to work. However, even the most hardened criminal is still going to have testicles, and that’s where my idea comes in. Your nadger is such a maze of furrows that no two are alike. My system currently consists of a camera and a felt-tip pen for highlighting the outstanding features on each photograph, but I'd like to develop this. I’ve experimented so far on distinguishing my left one from my right one and I have a 87% success rate - and most of the remaining 13% was when I’d just had a bath, which tends to make them look more alike – which is pretty good for a prototype. I reckon this idea could be used on the new ID cards we’ve been hearing so much about, and I’m expecting a call from the Home Office any time soon.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

G-G-G-G-G-Granville! (#7): I’ve Said it Once and I’ll Say it Again

It was pointed out – by Gorilla Bananas, no less – that stammerers are not so much getting stuck on words but emphasising them. It’s true. And as well as repeating (that’s emphasising) sounds, repeating whole words is also a habit stammerers get into: they’re so used to restarting the run-up they often don’t realise they’ve already taken off. (This also, up to a point, makes them fantastic lovers... another story). In fact, Scientists believe that repetition is actually the reason for stammering in the first place: evolution has hard-wired into our brains the knowledge of the fundamental truths of the universe and the only way of making people understand these are by constantly repeating them, and the only way of doing this without seeming like pedantic bores is by having a speech impediment. Clever or what that Darwin, eh? These scientists go on to say that we emphasisers are ipso facto the chosen conduits of the eternal verities, and that these are the chosen ones:

Tony Hancock: “That’s a good ‘un, that’s a good ‘un!” Hancock often repeated his best lines. Did comedy dieties Galton & Simpson script them like that or was The Lad ‘Imself fulfilling a higher destiny?

Tony Blair: “Education education education”. Now that sounds an eternal truth if ever there was one. And heck, we chose him; you can’t much more chosen than that.

Policemen: “‘Allo ‘allo ‘allo”. The police get a bad press but they’ve got a difficult job imposing their (foreordained) authority. Especially when stammering. I suppose having a truncheon makes it easier.

MacBeth: “Tomorrow and tomorrow and tomorrow... Out, out, brief candle!... (etc)”. The Downside. Macca knows too much, and it’s not made him a happy bunny.

Jimmy Saville: “Now then now then now then…. urghh-ughh-ughh!” Strewth. Saville’s clearly a conduit of something. Beats me what though.

Bill Withers: “I know, I know, I know I know, I know I know I know”. Bill’s getting exciting and perhaps giving away too much here. We need to keep our mystery, mate.

James Brown: “Vienna”. Stammering Brother No. 1 has already been mentioned on this blog, and with his repeated and seemingly irrelevant intoning of the word “Vienna” was clearly trying to tell us something about pre-WWI diplomacy. Too late.

The Byrds: “Turn Turn Turn”. Where were we supposed to turn to? That's for them to know and you to find out.

The Beatles: “Yeah Yeah yeah”. Ok, ok, it's piss-easy to pick on repetitions in pop songs and I promise this'll be the last, but it shows you’ll never go bust by underestimating the public's need for banality.

Bruce Forsyth: “Good game good game”. Brucie, evolution’s greatest achievement so far, also responsible for the near-palindromic “Nice to see you to see you nice”.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Gone To The Dogs

Now I have full-time employment I also have colleagues. One would wish for colleagues like Gareth, Colin or Johnny. But no. It’s hard to get any fun or indeed human interaction of any kind and therefore to have remained sane by Friday. My best bet - and my main source of Jeremy Clarkson news - is Doru, a jolly decent chap but with rather low horizons: “Barry Bogiss he won last night”; “Eh??”; “European Long Distance Lawnmower Rally. You did not see on Eurosport 2?”; “Oh, errr, yes, of course, errr...”; “Sven Spodsen he started well but his rotor blades were set too high. In London is raining a lot, yes?”; “…yes, indeed, yes, almost all the time, yes……. Chim chiminey, chim chiminey chim chim cher-ee….”.

So after the departure of my donkey friend, I’ve been forced to turn for companionship to the canine community. Dogs are plentiful here: domesticated, wild, feral, bi-feral, feral-curious… one of my wife’s cousins even has a dog that’s half wolf! I remember when it was the cutest puppy you ever saw, but now it’s a wolf, though for some reason still as soft as shite. The man next door has dachshunds, which he tells me – inexplicably, unless it’s to make me feel at home – are English. I’ve been convinced there are at least 20 of them, but Mrs Dilo assures me that because they move around so quickly and randomly it just seems like there’s a lot. I therefore applied my A.I. unsupervised learning and pattern recognition skills and deduced that there’s 3 of them, based on 3 distinct emergent patterns of fur-colouration. But Mrs Dilo, again, whose eagle eyes spot bargains, gypsy misdeeds, and the differences between hedge warblers and sedge warblers from several kilometres distance, assures me there’s 4 of them, but that 2 look quite similar. And they’ve got names: “Bruno”, “Blackie”, “Boo-Boo” and – oh yes – “Lady”.

Another mystery solved. I’m now friends with them all and with their Ţuică-breathed owner. We’ve barred them from our garden by boarding up the holes in the fence, but Bruno in particular can make himself incredibly low to the ground so it’s only a matter of time before he’s crapping on our carpet.