Friday, January 30, 2004  

A little knowledge….

I read quite a lot, and it’s a good mix of fact and fiction. However, the fact based books I have read recently have all been about lying politicians. I sit and read books by Michael Moore, Noam Chomsky, John Pilger, George Monbiot and most recently Al Franken, and I laugh at the way these clever writers take the awful truth and make it funny (With the exception of Chomsky who could take the most riveting subject and send you into a permanent vegetative state).

Then I watched with mounting horror as Hutton passed judgement from on high. I was appalled; the guy’s middle name is obviously whitewash. Old news I hear you cry, well here’s the thing….it was a wake up call. I have spent far too long laughing at these fuckers over the last few months. These people aren’t just fodder for the satirist, they’re running our lives and they should be accountable for the things they do.

I am reading an Ian Banks book about a London DJ, and fuck me if it isn’t about current politics. I just can’t escape; everywhere I turn there are lies and deceit. Is there no honour left in this world ? Why is it so difficult to tell the fucking truth, to have the courage of your convictions and stand up for what you believe ?

I needed escapism and found it in Peter Kay, the man’s a fucking genius. Just one line from tonight’s episode of one of my most hated programs and I was away again. I think I need to watch Bill Hicks; he treats politicians with the contempt they deserve.

I have been critical of the BBC in the past; get this, for being pro government. I think their coverage of last years atrocities in Iraq were a little one sided at times. I heard very few dissenting voices and saw scant evidence of a balanced view. The way they jumped on the fly-on-the-wall-docu-soap bandwagon has been a waste of time and money. Their sport coverage is virtually fucking non-existent and Anne Robinson is a ginger freak. However, I think they have been seriously fucked up the arse by Lord Hutton, bent over and given a fucking good seeing to. Ah well, one more reason to hate Blair and his cronyism.

Cunts !

Click here to find out why.

| posted by Simon | 10:53 pm | 0 comments

Sunday, January 25, 2004  

The fourth way.

My 38th birthday passed in unremarkable style, just as planned. I'm still cursed with a relentless apathy coupled with a large dose of procrastination. I'm three weeks behind with the curry reviews, I still haven't finished the new template and I have my first OU TMA to do very soon. The cause ? I have been reading, a couple of fiction books followed by "Dude, where's my country ?" and currently "Lies and the lying liars that tell them" By Al Franken which in my opinion is better than Michael Moore. There are not many things better than proving right wing fuck heads are lying through their teeth.

One thing I wouldn't recommend is watching Reign of fire. I sat through it last night and I have to say it's one of the worst films I have had the misfortune to watch. Matthew McConaughey played a cross between general Patten and Popeye, while Christian Bale showed everyone why he shouldn't be the next Batman. The script was garbage, the acting was sponsored by Ronseal and even the special effects weren't that special. This could have been such a good film, which is why it was so disappointing. The dragons were definitely Turkeys.

Anyway, one thing I have managed to do is start my manifesto for a better Britain.

Because this manifesto is a bulky and somewhat tedious document, I have split it into manageable chunks. I don't profess to be in any way an expert on such matters, and these ideas will have holes and omissions. Look on them as the skeletons waiting for debate to flesh them out. I will endeavour to tackle one subject per post, which will build, over the coming weeks, into a document outlining my requirements for 21st century Britain. Issue one comes with a free binder*

Issue 1. Defence.

Britain will, without exception, cease and desist all conflict on foreign soil, effective immediately. All money saved from these fruitless ventures will be diverted into the health service. The military will be adjusted both in numbers and cost to provide adequate defence of our shores only.

Properly organised, Britain will have a well-equipped highly mobile armed forces to defend our land sea and air space against an invasion, however improbable.

All money wasted on Trident and other missiles will be diverted to education. Britain will unilaterally disarm itself of its nuclear capability. All savings will go towards providing a fair system of social security.

Arms manufacturers will be barred from peddling weapons to anyone but the ministry of defence. It is the contention of this party that today's wars are instigated and perpetuated by the military industrial complex. This party will rid Britain of the image of international bully, and usher in a new period of peace, where diplomatic solutions will be sought to international problems.

All foreign military bases on British soil will be closed with immediate effect. Personnel, weapons and equipment will be relocated to the country of origin.

If Britain refrains from imposing it's will on other countries, and instead helps others find real solutions to problems that poorer countries face, we will cease to be a target for terrorism. For too long this country has encouraged evil regimes that allow us to get our way, whilst punishing lesser evildoers who go against our wishes.

We will champion a new global benchmark for human rights, infant mortality, literacy, equality and freedom of speech. Together with other European countries we can find non-military methods of encouraging the rest of the world to accept the minimum standard. Not only will this ensure our safety in the future, but it will save countless millions of pounds that can be used for much needed services here in Britain.

*Binders are subject to availability.

| posted by Simon | 8:51 pm | 0 comments

Thursday, January 22, 2004  


just go with the flow     January 21st - February 19th.

Aquarians are - Ambidextrous, day dreaming cyclists with a tendency to state the beedin' obvious.

This month is an ideal time to become a celebrity chef, all you need is an annoying catchphrase and a complete inability to cook anything vaguely edible, and you're set for life. If you get a chance to sell your soul in the second week of February I would advise against it. Any other time and you're ok. Try to ensure you maintain a liberal supply of class A drugs, you'll need them on Valentines Day, oh and keep a pen and paper handy. Necessity is the mother of invention after all; sadly its father is ennui.

Do: Plant the seeds of doubt.
Don't: Pull your punches
Say: "Praise Atkins and pass me a pork chop".

| posted by Simon | 11:20 pm | 0 comments

Tuesday, January 20, 2004  

Irrational fears.

Anyone who has read my 100 things section will know that I’m scared of Moths and Dentists. If ever there was a good reason to outlaw genetic engineering, it’s the thought that someone somewhere could breed a Moth with a penchant for dentistry.

These genetic tinkerers could be responsible for all manner of chimera, from the Marmoset motor mechanic, or grease monkey…. To the Gerbil hostage negotiator, or Dave, as he's known to his mates down the legion.

Any more ?

The rest of this post has been chased from my mind by the image of a six foot moth leering over me with a drill in each of its six hairy claws, an inadequate strip of cloth covering its gaping fang-filled maw. It screeches in a language I somehow understand “Open wide, this won’t hurt a bit”. All through this nightmare its fetid wings buzz and flutter, sending motes of dust into the air, reflecting in its compound eyes like mandelbrots. Strapped into my chair, I am unable to escape its hairy evil intentions. I always thought they wanted to get into my mouth.


You know I’m not going to sleep, bastards !

| posted by Simon | 4:57 am | 0 comments

Monday, January 19, 2004  

Trussst in me....

Yesterday morning I wandered into the living room just as David frost was starting an interview with Michael Howard. It was the first time in a good while that I have seen either of these two dinosaurs, so I sat and watched it. In typical politician style the leader of the opposition only answered the questions that he wanted to, the rest he either twisted around or sidestepped completely. With his insincere grin and his malevolent eyes, he reminded me of Kaa the snake from jungle book. Frost did little to make the interview uncomfortable for Howard - Remember Paxman asking him 14 times if he had made the director of prisons a scapegoat for the Whitemoor escape ? - Frost almost seemed to help Howard construct some kind of party political broadcast. The end result, well I'm sure people with short memories will be attracted to the latest round of Tory tax cuts, and totally forget 13% mortgage rates. Don't get me wrong; I'm not advocating voting for the grinning cunt at number 10 either. That doesn't leave anyone else really does it ? Liberals are nondescript, Greens are a bit odd, I have a problem with their drug policies and their ideas about Europe. But I agree with their policies on defence and industry. It's a shame they don't pose a serious threat to the main two parties. The socialist labour party, they seem a natural place to start for someone disillusioned with new labours swing towards big business. Well their policies sound reasonable to me, but I can't help feeling that this kind of party has had it's chance and blown it, a quick look at their website will give you some idea of their professionalism. All the rest are here, and they aren't worth mentioning.

What to do !

I may have to start my own party, names and manifesto to follow.

Prepare for the fourth way !

| posted by Simon | 12:15 pm | 0 comments

Friday, January 09, 2004  


One more thing before I go, this is fucking funny.

Cheers taxdodger.

| posted by Simon | 10:09 pm | 0 comments

Back to the grindstone.

Three weeks off and the hatred dims a little, three days back and it all comes sharply back into focus. Three weeks off also put a couple of inches around my middle, so I'm doubly pissed off. The stone I lost on my brief stint with Dr Atkins has all found its way back to its original abode.

Along with the extra weight, I seem to be carrying more than my usual amount of apathy. I can't be arsed doing things that need to be done, both at work and at home. I think I need a fucking holiday.

Anyway, I found this. A few months ago I got a big one of these in my email, I tried to send it to the usual suspects but it was too big for my new mail server. Sorry, waffling again. Have a go at a couple, they're fucking ace !

Last night I bought this, I can feel a major upgrade coming on. Now I just need a big fuck-off processor to go in the nice shiny box.

Enough of this tedious wank, I need to recharge my creative thingy. (see I can't even make words do the things I want them to - bastards). I'll be back after a short break, it may be a couple of hours, it may be a couple of weeks.

In the words of Fu Manchu, "I will return".

| posted by Simon | 8:46 pm | 0 comments

Monday, January 05, 2004  

I wanted to.....

comment on this post, but it's not working. I'll put it here instead.

Another ace post, you can't possibly keep this up.

| posted by Simon | 11:57 pm | 0 comments

Don't just read, think !

Whilst mooching around blogworld today I found a site that accuses almost all British blogs of being anti-American. I find this really sad. I can only speak for myself, I’m not anti American, I’m anti Bush. I despise the way that the political system is run in America, but I despise the way our system is run also. The reason there has been a marked increase in the criticism of America is because you have a right wing Christian fundamentalist in the white house. A man responsible for hundreds of deaths whilst Governor of Texas, he didn’t get the nickname “Texacutioner” for nothing. His anti abortion laws are sick, his total disregard for international efforts to cut global warming, outlaw landmines and reduce the exponential growth of AIDS has gained him enemies in every corner of the globe. All this pales into insignificance when you look at his actions against two countries. First Saudi Arabia, the home of the Bin Ladens. After the eleventh of September 01 when it was muted that Al Qaeda were responsible for the attacks on the WTC, Bush and his cronies arranged for members of the Bin Laden family resident in the US to be flown home to Saudi. Why was that ? Something to do with them having business links with the Bush family maybe. Why didn’t George go to war with Saudi, they bank rolled Osama. Next we have Iraq, Bush had absolutely no cause to go to war with this country, no legitimate reason anyway. To this day no WMDs have been found. What they did find was plenty of oil and some big fat rebuilding contracts. Don’t get me wrong; Bush isn’t a one-man war machine. Clinton did his fair share of kicking ass on foreign soil, and he went back on some big election promises. No doubt the next incumbent of the white house will be much the same. As long as big business runs politics the man in the street will be way down the list of priorities.

This of course brings us to an even sadder point. Blair wants to be just like Bush. Blair and his shadow cabinet spoke out about issues like the PFI and the export credit guarantee. They critisised the then government over selling weapons to Indonesia that were used to kill innocent people in East Timor. As soon as they got in power they went back on every point, actively increasing the amount of arms sold under the ECG under their new “ethical foreign policy” and increasing by a massive margin the amount of PFI hospitals in the pipeline. We now have schools sponsored by private enterprise. We now have the gas board supplying our water; the phone company supplying our gas and the water company making us pay for the improvements the government is making them introduce. We have private prisons with inmates working in the private sector, it’s no wonder Dyson has shifted his manufacturing lock stock and two smoking hoovers to the Far East. Blair wants the whole thing, right down to the ten-gallon hat and shit-eating grin (Oh he already has one of those). You can argue that we started the ball rolling with our Empire; we have done our share of evil deeds. Someone has made a comparison between Bush and Hitler. I personally think that’s unfair. Hitler turned round Germany’s economy from fucking appalling to very strong. He did commit terrible crimes against several million innocent people, he was a murdering fuck-head. But then America murdered 250 million Native Americans and to this day is the only nation to drop an atom bomb. But that’s the past, lets look forward. You kick Bush out of the white house, we’ll get rid of the grinning cunt at number 10 and we’ll try again, waddya say ? A new start.

So no, not anti American. Anti Bush anti Blair, anti military industrial complex, anti lying bastards.

| posted by Simon | 1:15 am | 0 comments

Sunday, January 04, 2004  

Cumbrian Odyssey #1.

Akash Tandoori
Tangier Street Whitehaven.

Meal for 3:

6 Popadums with assorted pickles.

1 Chicken tikka jalfrezi.
1 Lamb Ceylon.
1 Chicken tikka garlic.
1 Garlic pilau.
1 Vegetable pilau.
1 Plain pilau.

1 Bombay aloo.
1 Garlic naan.
1 Peshwari naan.

The bill included several drinks and came to £47.

We arrived at approximately eight pm without booking. It seemed very busy but they managed to fit us in. Even though they were busy we didn’t feel rushed, in fact it was after ten when we left. The restaurant was quite small and decorated in the usual curry house décor of fake Indian pictures and dodgy wallpaper. It did look clean though, but could do with a little modernising.

The food was very good, piping hot and full of flavour. The rice was excellent and the Peshwari naan was probably the best I’ve had. My curry was the lamb Ceylon which I’ve never had before, so I have no frame of reference to judge it against. It did taste like the menu said it would and was just spicy enough not to drown out the other flavours. I had a little of each of the rice dishes and all were excellent especially the garlic. The Bombay aloo was probably gilding the lily a little, but it was very good. The beer was bottled Cobra, it was ice cold, refreshing and perfect with a curry.

Just before the bill arrived we got slices of fresh Orange, after eight mints and hot towels. Tracy got a Carnation. I enjoyed the meal and I liked the ambiance, it was friendly and relaxed. I think the atmosphere was helped by all the tables being in their own little booth, it gave a feeling of privacy even though you could hear the buzz of the place.

Overall I give it a creditable 7/10.

| posted by Simon | 10:14 pm | 0 comments

Comfort zone, curry and hoovers.

I often regret telling people about my blog, I sometimes wish it was totally anonymous. I have just been reading a mates blog, and people who are very close to him have left comments, and if it was my place I would feel very uncomfortable indeed. But it's all academic, most people who I either like or respect know about this place, and it's not as if I divulge my deepest darkest secrets or open my heart to all and sundry. Considering the comments I have just read I'm going to ensure that I am very carefull who I tell about this place.

Last night we went for a curry at the Akash in Whitehaven. It was splendid. We are now giving serious thought to embarking on a Cumbrian odyssey. A visit to some of the best curry houses in the county and maybe some of the crap ones. Obviously I will need to review each one, and I'll start with the Akash when I can remember what we had.

Hoovers: I have covered this before, but I think it needs to be reiterated. They are infernal machines, designed by Satan's minions in the darkest recesses of Hades. They should be outlawed during daylight hours, and be made to clean your house in the dead of night, silently. A word of warning, don't get lured in by their bright colours or their special filters, they are infernal machines.

| posted by Simon | 6:48 pm | 0 comments

Friday, January 02, 2004  

The man from Japan.

He came to visit us via Tokyo, Manchester, Barcelona, somewhere in Scotland and Penrith. He covers his tracks well, and he is always very vague about what he does for a living. He only stayed one night; we went out for a meal then to the pub to watch Arsenal beat Southampton. In the morning he left, who knows where he went or when we will see him again. Maybe one day we will go and visit him in Tokyo and see if it's as mad as he says it is. He has left a mark on this blog, if you search you may find a little more about him. I wish I could tell you more, but you don't become an international man of mystery by telling everyone about yourself.

I'm now counting down to my 38th birthday, and then the second anniversary of the inception of this web backwater. The continuous passage of existence really fucks me off sometimes. 03 absolutely fucking flew by. This brings me back to my theory of introducing chaos into our lives in order to make them feel longer. After telling you all about my theory I then promptly forgot about it, so I will endeavour to post all about my random chaos events in the coming months.

| posted by Simon | 10:07 pm | 0 comments

Thursday, January 01, 2004  

Right you fucker, I'm going to do the washing up.

Well 04 has arrived with a bit of a whimper; we had planned a quiet night in a pub with a log fire and a pool table. We got ready and left the house at twenty past eight. We were back less than five minutes later after braving blizzard conditions and wading through two inches of freezing slush. Out of our house, across the road and under the bridge only to find the fucking pub shut. We legged it back home, got changed and watched TV for the rest of the night. Jools Holland again.

We watched Withnail and I the other night (cheers Nick). It was fucking class, Richard E Grant should be the next James Bond and he should play it in the style of Withnail. "Blowfelt, you terrible cunt !"

03 was an odd year. Very busy with the shop, so it passed really quickly. Governments pushing the boundaries of piss-taking to as yet unheard of levels and TV, continuing it's downward spiral into a bottomless pit of shite aimed at the lowest common denominator. LCD is an apt name for the new telly you buy this year.

I have never really been a proponent of new years resolutions, although this year I will make a concerted effort to watch as little TV as is humanly possible. I have my OU, I have loads of books to read and at least two computers to build. Oh, and I have work and the shop to fit in somewhere.

I hope you all have a happy and healthy 04.

Chin chin !

| posted by Simon | 2:38 pm | 0 comments
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