Friday, February 29, 2008

Cyclists, Motorists, etc.....

The story seemed fairly routine, a 'cut and dried' case. A Woman playing text tennis with her ex husband whilst driving, mows down a cyclist. Bang! Send 'er down! Except there are a few details that wiggled out with the story and are currently nagging at me like a sore tooth. Like the fact the rider wasn't helmeted. Now, I'm no lover of these things, if ever a device was designed to make you look like a tit, it's the cycling helmet, but surely if you're going to take to the roads on a bike, it should be something of a pre-requisite, no? This, to be honest is just an observation and not my main beef. When I go cycling I don't wear a helmet....... No, what caught my eye was the fact that the rider had gone through a red light. I know little of the details as to how the accident happened, and as such can only go on supposition, but what this suggests to me is that the cyclist decided that the red light did not apply to him and ultimately paid the price. I also would have thought there may also be a problem with linking the text the defendant received, to her 'inattentiveness' at the junction. I'm assuming witness statements pretty much did for her though, as did breaking the speed limit...... The argument goes that simply put she wasn't paying attention and it could have been someone slow to cross the road or a straying child that she hit. When you put it like that, 4 years is a little harder to argue with, even if she wasn't distracted by a mobile. I see them every day, foot down, brains in their arses and an accident waiting to happen............ Back to the cyclist. Some cyclists can be a massive fucking problem. I say this as a pedestrian who has to deal with them every day and will, one day, call one of the bleeders to a halt and attempt to cram their two grand-front and rear suspension-disk brake mountain bikes up their jacksies. (If ever there was a cycling equivelent of the Chelsea Tractor this is it... ) I understand why children cycle on the pavement, but grown men and women? Use the road, take a course in cycling proficiency and read the Highway Code if it all scares you a little, BUT DO FUCKING NOT cycle along the pavement at about 20 mph and shout at people for getting in your way, DO FUCKING NOT hop from road to pavement and back again at your own convenience and for the love of God, don't trundle through red traffic lights thinking the world magically stops just for you.............. You can't legislate for drivers being distracted by mobile phones, by something on the radio, by a passenger,by something they saw on the road quarter of a mile back........... The problem with cars is that they induce a sense of security and comfort, they remove a layer of consciousness that cyclists and bikers simply cannot shed. It's sad, but it's the way it is. What the lesser spotted trick-cyclists can do is stop treating the highway and it's environs like a BMX track, what they can do is realise that in the abscence of comprehensive cycle lanes, main roads are fucking dangerous places that require absolute concentration. A great many motorcyclists will tell you this for nowt, and they have to take a test and pay road tax. Oh, and for all the good it might do you, if you're gonna be mixing it with heavy traffic on a day to day basis, it might well be worth looking a bit of a tit in a helmet. I'm led to belive they are genuinely helpful in reducing head injury risks at low speeds. Whether a crash hat would have helped Mr Wickington though is debatable, that looks to have been one of those situations that was always going to happen, given the prevailing attitudes of two different sets of road users.......... **None of the above applies, of course, to cyclists who know how to ride the roads. Just steer clear of lorries, they're hell......

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Laugh You Bastards!!!

A lorry driver is taking 200 penguins to London Zoo when his lorry breaks down on the motorway. The driver gets out of the cab and he's looking at the engine when a second lorry driver pulls in behind him and asks if he needs help. The driver of the penguin lorry explains that he's taking the penguins to the zoo and asks if the other man would take them there instead. The other driver happily agrees. Some hours later, the 2nd lorry driver drives past the first one, who is still waiting on the motorway. The penguins are still on the lorry, and seem to look quite happy. "I thought I asked you to take those penguins to the zoo," shouted the first driver. The second replied, "I did, but I had some money left, so we're going to the cinema now."

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

A Shot In The Dark

I've entered a short story competition. It's No.42 on the list.

Basically one has to write no more than 250 words using a picture of a bare tree on a hillside as a form of 'inspiration'. I'm not at my best in those situations, but it's a good exercise. With some punctuation corrections, it'll pass muster though. I think I'll need to do better next time, there are some pretty good writers in there.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

You Don't Like Goat Boy.........? (Once More For Luck!)

What happened there? Floating about the net at lunchtime today, I saw something a bit askew with last nights post and decided to go in and ammend it. I don't usually do this at work, but thought nothing of it. I made the correction, published it, refreshed the page and bang! It was gone. What the fuck? Who stole my Goddam post? Where is it you fuckers? I spent about an hour and a half writing that last night and it's gone, just like that.................. Some of you might have read it this morning. Some of you with photographic memories might be able to remember it verbatim and quote it back to me, I don't know................ It was a piece about the late Bill Hicks, who died on the 26th of February 1994 of Pancreatic Cancer. It was ok, short and sweet, though most of the time was taken up, as ever, by writing then editing out various rubbish bits. Anyway, above is the only bit of the post I can retrieve, the Youtube clip of Hicks in 'Goat Boy' mode at the Dominion Theatre, London in 1993. Enjoy!

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

How To Disappear Completely

None of you will be surprised to know that I both crave attention and like nothing more than being left alone. It's a real fucker, I tell thee. Oddly enough, I generally tend to have my requests for peace and quiet granted to me. In fact I rarely have to ask, which is nice..... It's a bit harder when I want everyone to look my way, so I suppose that's why I blog. Then I can combine the two disciplines. I can act the arse to a small group of people AND be left in peace to listen to music, tend to my plants, wash the dishes and play old Spectrum games on my PC.

Anyway, it came to my notice recently that the Inland Revenue have no idea that I'm working.


Recently, the company I worked for was taken over* and since the tax bods were doing a wee audit on me anyway with regard to unpaid taxes (easy Duff, I'm still PAYE, I won't be sharing a cell with Lester Pigot and Ken Dodd just yet), it came to their notice that I was no longer working for Solicitor 'X' and for whatever reason, my new employers hadn't updated them on the chaos that they were about to unleash. You do realise it would have been months or years before they caught up with me had my dear old Ma not been residing at my previous address........

This leads me to my other disappearing act. Over the past few weeks, the whole Glasgow operation has been having it's email/operating systems changed over to those used by the new company. Quite apart from realising that we've actually gone back to the dark ages with regard to how Windows works (I swear, my old Commodore 64 was more user friendly), they've also been kind enough to fuck up my email so that all emails sent to the Glasgow offices in general avoid me, and me alone. 'Im also unable get in touch with anyone else, unless they happen to know my new email address. To all intents and purposes, I might as well not exist.........

So, there you have it, I'm 'The Man With No Name', 'The Outlaw', 'The Fugitive', 'The Black Rider'.............I shall bring the company to it's knees from within! The Silent Assasin will strike without mercy! long as it doesn't affect my holiday allocation of course.........

*Technically speaking, it was 'merged', but then technically speaking Guido Fawkes is a journalist.........

Spinny wind vane thingy at North Berwick.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Test Post

Just trying out the Blogger Video option. Not bad, as long as the file isn't too big. This was taken coming back from a football game at Livingston on the Partick Thistle Supporters Bus. It's not meant to be anything, just me farting about with my camera to relieve the boredom, pointing it out the window at the street lights. It was the shortest thing I could find. It has a sort of hypnotic feel to it I suppose..........

Sunday, February 17, 2008

They Don't Come Any Shorter............

Szelsofa has recently been trying her hand at making up short stories with only six words in them. Now, you could argue that a six word short story isn't a short story at all, but merely a sentence and to be honest, you wouldn't get much arguement from me. Ok, I'm sceptical, but is it possible to write something that short and convey a sense of narrative? I thought I'd have a shot myself.

I wait, lost. Not long now.

I understand. You don't need me.

Leaving here, missed the train. Fuck!

Bad sex? sure. Still miss you.

Feverish lust, darkened room, click click.

Burnt oil and engines roar. Ashfield Sundays.....

Damn! That's harder than I thought. I'd say only two of those are any good. I've tried one hundred word stories before, and yes, they're a pig to write as well.

I think I'll leave these little Zen numbers to the others.....

Not Another New Blog!

Found a new photo upload site called Fotonomy. It's from the guy who invented Fotothing. It's free (for now) and it seems to be pretty much an unlimited upload. It's tidy, easy on the eye, easy to use. Perfrect.

There have been some strange goings on at Fotothing and the site is down at the moment, but I'll still be posting stuff there, as I'm merely a freebie member.

This leads me to something I've been mulling over for some time. Since I ended my photo diary blog Seven Days, I've been thinking of a project to replace it. The Amazing One Man Brake Club is up and running and may well be the successor, though not quite the one I envisaged. What I'd like to be able to do is a sort of group blog. I'd be looking for people to contribute photos, short video clips(no more than 1-2 minutes long) containing anything you want. Short stories, poetry and songs are also welcome. Apparently up to 100 people can be added to any blog as a contributer.

Anyway, just floating it as an idea, see how many of you would be up for this. If the interest shown is low (less than half a dozen people) then I'll put it on the back burner for now.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

My Record Player Works! Just!.........And Other Assorted Prayers

It's rolling along just now..........Give it five minutes and it'll fuck up, but it's nice to hear the old songs anyway.

Listening to 'Beach Boys Love You' just now. It's Brian Wilson's post therapy work out that probably never would have been released if the band weren't such a bunch of desperate shills. Then again, if it hadn't been released, the world would have been a sadder place, so fuck it!

I'm 32 sometime today. No fanfare, no big deal..........Just the basic recognition that I've survived another year. Hurray for me!

I am so going to get a Dansette and have done with it. I went into Maplins the other day and asked for a cartridge for a record player and the guy looked at me like I had just landed from another planet. He then pointed to a catalogue with some styluses, at which point I bade him good-day and decided it was best not to leave anything in the hands of such people . I wouldn't leave them in charge of a packet of crisps, let alone a chain of technical retail shops.

Ok, I'm too drunk to blog now.

Big shout to all my friends. You all know who you are. Even I don't........... Thankyou.

The iLL Man

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Love Hurts.........

Did they jump or did they just leave a banner asking a question none of us can answer?

Boy does it hurt.........

I became embroiled in something about ten months ago and, well, I'm still none the wiser to be honest. Maybe that's why it ended. I have a vague feeling I was meant to do certain things and act in certain ways, but it just never occurred to me. No surer way to destroy the illusion of love than acting all absent and detached. Funny old world. A prior relationship to this one ended because I lapsed into the 'desperate puppy dog' act. I got it the wrong fucking way around, didn't I? It seems that whatever the situation, I'll mis-read it and apply the wrong behaviour mode.

Of course, you might argue that acting like a lovesick goon just to keep an affair rolling is no way to be. Sure, but if I'd held myself together in the prior relationship, well, things might have been a bit different. Look, these things don't come along very often for me. I need to get them right first time..............

I don't mind admitting that I get pangs of regret now. Is it love when you feel regret? Is it love when you pine like the proverbial Norwegian Blue? Or is it just missing the tactile, the touch, the sheer contact? The lost boy looking eternally for assurance and validity?

Does anyone care?

Nah! and nor should you..........

So, to all who feed the machine with bunches of flowers that will be dead by Tuesday and cards that can never adequately express the things you feel and boxes of cheap chocolate to be half eaten and surreptitiously stuck in the bin, I say this..................

Take two days off work. If it helps to be around the 14th of February, fine! If not, then also fine. Fuck each other senseless, go to the pub, or the park, or whatever it is you both like doing (Bungee Scuba Diving, Naked Potholing, Transcribing Das Kapital into Swahili), come home, eat like gluttons, drink like fools.................etc

For the rest of you? It's not your day, sorry..........

The day they find and recognise the Patron Saint of Jilted Lovers, or the Patron Saint of Misanthropic Singletons, then sure, fill yr boots................

Until then, chin up, chest out and thank yr lucky stars you don't have some fucker stealing the sheets off you tonight.*

* Shit! Sorry, some people like that sort of stuff.........

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Body Language Was Never My Strong Suit

'The Bedouin' gets a lick of paint. I wanted him to hire me as his cabin boy, but he just gave me a funny look and threatened to call the police.

You know that moment? The one where you suddenly realise the person you're talking to has glazed over and is no longer listening to a word you're saying.........

I do that a dozen times a day. Maybe it's because I'm not interested in what anyones got to say. That could be it. I could just be a rude and supercillious cunt. I don't know, people are fucking boring, they bang on relentlessly, humourlessly, they talk unbidden about things you couldn't possibly care about, and they do it at gratuitous fucking length. Do I do it? Hell, sure I do, but you see, I have this awesome weapon in my armoury which makes me superior. heavens, you dear reader might have this ability too, for it is by no means unique to me. It's called self awareness. I know when I've gone off the deep end, when I'm heading into those dark woods of incoherence, I see the dimming of the lights, the barely visible nods as my victim tries to make it obvious they'd rather eat their own entrails than hear any more, but at the same time trying not to make it too obvious so they don't offend me. I see the signs and I stop. In fact, if you completely fucking ignore me, I stop even quicker , I check myself and realise that yes, nobody gives a damn. You get good at it after a while and learn the art of keeping it short and sweet.

Sadly, the two people I sit with have no such ability. The guy opposite me, whilst he's a nice enough chap, and sometimes quite funny, seems to think I'm interested in what the increasingly paranoid mouth breathers on the Follow Follow Rangers Fan Forum have to say. I couldn't give a flying fuck for the opinions of the average Partick Thistle fan, so why in the name of all that's Holy does he think I care about the delusional, petty rantings of Big Shuggy McPopehater from Larkhall? Answers on a postcard.

The other menace sits next to me, and again she's actually alright in many ways, but fuck me!, once she warms to her subject, there is absolutely no fucking stopping her. Just when you think it's come to an end, she starts up again. Finally, you think you've ridden it out, but no, theres more. Sometimes it feels like you have to physically leave the desk to stop her in her tracks. I deserve all I get I suppose, I engage her in conversation sometimes and nobody should have any sympathy for me in those situations............It's not always like that though and many's the time it's taken me the best part of two minutes to escape the gravitational pull of my desk, just so I don't have to listen to her prattling, usually in an exaggerated fashion that resembles someone doing a very laboured and not terribly funny stand up routine.

The thing I wonder is why they don't read the signals. Is it just that they have no knowledge of what a very bored man looks like? Is it deliberate? Are they just trying to drive me mad? If so, then that's alright, because I'm a man half way to fucking delirium anyway, one more little shove won't do any harm. It's the other option that scares me.. If neither of them know that zero eye contact, grunted responses and veiled hints that they might be talking about something I couldn't give two fucks about don't work, then frankly, I might as well run bollock naked through the office, photocopy my balls and staple the results to the department managers forehead for all the difference it'll make.

Sorry, you were saying..................?

It'll Never Happen Again

Sad but true. An unfashionable provincial club from a footballing backwater like Scotland, beating what was even then, the most expensive team in Europe. I'm a Partick Thistle fan and as such I have little time for Dundee Utd, but as an eleven year old kid in 1987, I was extremely fond of them. It was my form of glory hunting I suppose. Everyone else I knew was a Liverpool or Rangers or Celtic fan, I went for The Arabs. United Manager, Jim McLean, was a madman who knew talent when he saw it and ensured it was tied down with a five year contract at all times. This was how he built his side without losing players to bigger clubs all the time.

I still get goosebumps watching this clip.

It's Not The Losing That Kills You, It's The Giving Up........


I have known the inexorable sadness of pencils,
Neat in their boxes, dolor of pad and paper weight,
All the misery of manilla folders and mucilage,
Desolation in immaculate public places,
Lonely reception room, lavatory, switchboard,
The unalterable pathos of basin and pitcher,
Ritual of multigraph, paper-clip, comma,
Endless duplicaton of lives and objects.
And I have seen dust from the walls of institutions,
Finer than flour, alive, more dangerous than silica,
Sift, almost invisible, through long afternoons of tedium,
Dropping a fine film on nails and delicate eyebrows,
Glazing the pale hair, the duplicate grey standard faces.

Theodore Roethke
Be back soon with some proper nonsense. Hold tight and thanks for listening..........

Sunday, February 10, 2008


Need to go away and have a think for a bit. It's not the mis-carriage I posted below, that's par for the course on a drunken Friday night, I've written worse, I'm sure. It's when you post up a photo and it gets a negative response............maybe that's the signal for me to go and do something else for a while, let it all slide and come back when I can be arsed.

I'll still be about, just not here.

See y'all soon.


Saturday, February 09, 2008

Georgejonestown - A Demographic Breakdown.

You've heard of Jonestown. You might even have heard of Georgetown. They're not far from each other. I'm wagering however, you've never heard of the Free Nation of Georgejonestown .

Every morning, hundreds of drunken country singers get on their lawn mowers and head into the next town for a bottle of booze and every evening they are met by their buxom, blonde country singing wives, threatening divorce. The economy is self-contained and stable and the populace are, more often than not, very drunk and/or hopped up on pills. The population can be describes as volatile, yet strangely predictable in their behaviour.

The Gross National Product is the Lovelorn Country Ballad and the currency is The Empty Whiskey Bottle.

Current population stands at around 100, of which 50% are female and 50% are out of their tiny fucking minds on any intoxicating substance that comes to hand.

Friday, February 08, 2008

Music Shop Window

As wise aquaintance once advised, never go anywhere without your camera.................

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Amusing Extract From A Childish Scrawl (The Fuck Off Song?)

Most people are hateful
Spiteful and ungrateful
Most people are a pain in the arse

Most people wouldn't care
But they will stop and stare
When your life becomes a sad and tragic farce

Life Mrs Jones
It's one long kick in the stones
And if you happen to passing and look this way

Please don't be alarmed
Affronted or dis-armed
If I completely fail in my attempt to say 'Good Day!'

Good Day!

So Fuck Off!, Yes Please, Fuck Off!
Yes, You Heard It Right The First Time
Fuck Off!, Oh Do Please Fuck Off!
Otherwise I'm Feeling Rather Fine

Down At The Duck Pond

Some News

A rough transaltion of the legend inscribed above in felt tip pen would possibly be 'Dear Sir/Madam, We would be most grateful if you could refrain from allowing your walking piss machine to micturate at will all over our little sign. We suggest you take Fido to the nearest lamp-post to perform his territorial duties, or better still, take him to the vet and have the fucker neutered. Thankyou.

Some time back, I wittered on about how the old Speedway at Ashfield was under threat and made a plea, more in hope than expectation, to any passing readers to maybe take up cudgels and write a wee note to those nice people at the Glasgow City Council Planning Dept.

Well, it would seem the planning permission for the proposed office block/housing development has been pretty much kyboshed, due in no small part to the letter writing campaign staged by Glasgow Tigers fans. If anyone put forward a response from my initial post, can I just pass on my eternal gratitude. This has bought the club the time they need to look at new options. Ashfield is probably not an ideal long-term venue, due to local housing which limits the amount of speedway that can be staged and prevents youngsters from getting much needed practice. The speedway however, will continue for now and that is what is most important. Now, all you need to do is get yer arses along of a Sunday Afternoon from March 9th onwards. Sure, it aint cheap, but for 12 quid or so, you get a great afternoon of entertainment, cheap booze, a friendly atmosphere and an overload of the senses you'll not find anywhere else. (No charge for the free ad Mr Dick ;D)

Anyway, tonights 'And Finally' story involves me going into ruddy Premark and buying the wrong size of trousers for about the third time in the space of a year. I think it's my sub-conscious. It doesn't want to accept the fact that I have a 38" waist. I even wrote my measurements down beforehand, yet I went in, picked up the trousers from the rail and headed for the check-out convinced I'd picked up the right size of breeks..........

Janet Street Farter eat yr heart out!

Friday, February 01, 2008


Indeed! After what seemed like an eternity of traipsing up and down to my parents house to check email and make blog posts, I am at last in the land of the connected. I would like to thank my brother for his assistance, my folks for their patience and you dear reader(s) for hanging around to see the day. Jings!

Ok, I had a big list of stuff I was gonna blog about, but frankly, a lot of it has lost it's appeal since I jotted it down. Blogging topics have to be fresh, though theres no reason why some of them shouldn't crop up again.

We're all familiar with the term 'Jump The Shark', right? That defining moment in a tv show where the scripts take a terminal turn for the worse, the watershed moment after which the whole point and credibility of the programme is lost. Like Arthur Fonzerelli in 'Happy Days' strapping on water-ski's and jumping over a shark. Whilst wearing his leather jacket.

Ok, fine. Except it seems that actual the use of the term goes a long way beyond that. Check the Wikipedia definition of the term, or the site. It seems to me that just about any situation regarding a tv show can be categorised as some form of 'Shark Jumping'. Problems arise of course when the very premise of the show in question is a 'Shark Jump' and in some ways, to not jump the shark would indeed be an act of 'Shark Jumping'. Are you with me? No?


I say we do away with these phony categories and get back to the original point of the phrase. It was originated as an easy, catchy, shorthand way of denoting the exact point at which the network bosses got their talons into the script-writing team, or the precise point at which the premise of a particular show had outlived it's purpose, leading the script writers to go to ever more ludicrous lengths to avoid repeating themselves. Shit TV shows DO NOT COUNT!!! Diff'rnt Strokes jumped several super-sized Great Whites the very moment it aired. Accusing it of 'Jumping The Shark' is like accusing Britney Spears of being a Pop Star. On the other hand, Happy Days, whilst being nothing more than a cheap, fairly well written nostalgia vehicle, managed to retain a thread of continuity, enough to traumatise a nation with this image.

My personal nominations are.........

Monty Python - Most of series 4
Still Game - Series whatever - When pensioners give birth
My Family - Die! Die! Die Now!

If anyone has any other suggestions, I'd be grateful if they'd keep them to themselves.