That pure Cane Spirit since 1848.

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

Well that just puts the tin hat on it.

Three bloody months I’ve been working on my algorithm (Warhammer II ™ © ) and suddenly the bloody levellers at the SEC and FSA are bleating on about high frequency trading and how it’s the death of proper share dealing and how stock markets and exchanges are there to provide capital for enterprise and not fat wads for casino banks, it’s so easy a monkey could do it and blah de blah de blah.

This is exactly what is killing our great nation. I’d love a fat wad me, instead my pips are being squeezed mercilessly.

Monday, October 26, 2009

My Beautiful Fucking Mind.

In 1968, in our leafy little primary school, (no snotters, no rickets, no Irish) when we were nine years old, they introduced us to the problem of the overflowing bath in arithmetic.

It runs like this.

A forgetful man wishes to have a bath so he turns on both taps but forge
ts (because he is forgetful) to put the plug in and is suddenly called away to the telephone. While he is away, the water keeps pouring out the taps, filling the bath. The bath fills at 10 gallons a minute and drains out the plughole at 5 gallons a minute. If the bath holds 100 gallons of water, how long before the bath overflows?

It took me ten seconds to solve it even though I was watching out the window for Batman who was coming at 11am to talk to us about road safety. My poor little classmates however, were in a right tizzy. They were pissing their pants trying to work out the answer before that fucking bath overflowed. They were troubled by the phone call to the forgetful man. At the door were three bags of bottle tops for the blind. They were frightened that the water would get in the skirting boards and flood the electrics. Do they make metal eyes out them? Help! The bath water will soak everything to fuck and back in the whole fucking house!
As the minutes passed, they blamed themselves. Our paintings on the wall looked shit. The water kept on rising in the bath. Their little legs were wiggling in panic. God, they hated the forgetful man. Forgetful? He was a fucking spastic. Can’t he hear the bath running? Is he fucking deaf and dumb as well? T
hey couldn’t even phone him to tell him to turn the fucking taps off because he was ON the fucking phone and the line was busy and it might be a party line and anyway he shouldn’t be allowed to use the phone if he can’t run a fucking bath the stupid useless bastard, we hope he gets drowned, we will be blamed for the whole fucking mess when we got home.

It’s simple arithmetic so you maybe think I solved it by taking 5 from 10 and dividing 100 by the result, but you’d be wrong. This will become clear later. Meanwhile I watched out the window and put up my hand and said; “20 minutes.” Mrs Thompson turned over the page to check the answer and sniffed. I made her uneasy because I was always looking up her skirt at her knickers.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

I have taken a police caution and we’ll say no more about it Mister Maroon.
The wheels of Scottish justice have finally come off with their judgement.
It’s most unsatisfactory. A priggish verbal warning and a criminal record and a feedback questionnaire to fill in, asking my opinion of the Tayside Police Service. (Obviously I shall lie)

Of the three, I don’t know what gets my goat the most. I think it’s the questionnaire. No; it’s the caution.

There was a time in this great nation, when giants like Douglas Bader and Brian Trubshaw strode the land, a time when two men could settle their differences with an honest punch-up without dogs fainting and PC 99 making such a bloody song and dance about it; a time when, if some crosspatch was being a pest, whammo! hard as you can onto the bastard’s nose or wind pipe - endof.

"Dead for a ducat! Dead!"

"At midnight, the drunken lout drew near with evil threats upon his breath, by 12:03, I had run him through. ‘twas nothing, a matter of seconds and his life’s blood staining the flags…" That sort of thing.

Not now. Now it’s all "you do not have to say anything to harm your defence but were the arresting officers courteous ? Were they prompt? Did the taser hurt? Was there a pine air freshener in the black maria?"

After you with the pencil please, Mad Frankie. Swing low, sweet chariot…

Friday, September 18, 2009

The Leith Police Releaseth Me

Why are constabularies of the world so against high jinks? Anyone would think that men in bars only ever played skittles and discussed their allotments. A swift punch in the throat never hurt anyone. Have they never seen a John Wayne film?

Anyway, it’s Rosh Hashanah and that seems a good place to start my 10 days of repentance; Days of Awe to you (no offence).

But I would walk five hundred miles
And I would walk five hundred more
Just to be the man who walked a thousand miles
To fall down at your door

I’M BACK! (for good)
Leshone Toyve; Lang may your lum reek.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Straightforward Saucy Seaside Postcards

Nos. 1 & 2 in a converging infinite series.

No. 1 “Judging The Vegetables.”

Let the postcard show a village fete and let the illustrator show the judging of the garden vegetables upon a table.
And to avoid any misunderstanding, let there be a sign upon the tent canvas saying: “Village Fete. ~ Vegetable Competition“.
And let the judge in this case be a cleric: A Church of England vicar or curate or somesuch.
And let him be in dog collar and black weskit and have a rosette upon his lapel with the word “JUDGE” upon it.
And let him be shewn standing close to the table such that a cucumber, recumbent upon the table, is in absentminded contact with the fly buttons of his trousers.
For good measure, let the vicar have a beatific smirk upon his face.

Now, let there also be a lovely young woman in a red polka dot, low-cut, summer frock barely restraining her “rack”. And let the illustrator shew her resting her clammy little hand upon the aforementioned cucumber. And let her full red lips be parted in a saucy smile of overpowering fecundity.

She should speak thus: “Ooh Vicar, is it as big as yours?”

And let the cleric reply: “That’s not a cucumber Miss ~ I took some camouflage paint from the cadets and disguised my penis to look like a cucumber and that is what you are stroking now.”

And, if there be space still upon the card, let all reply in unison: “Stop the fete! The vicar is a filthy pervert!”

No.2 At The Greengrocer.

Let the card show an array of ripe melons in a greengrocer’s shop and to avoid confusion let there be a sign upon the wall saying : “Nudist Camp Shop” or some such.
And let there be a beautiful naked woman holding two ripe melons prior to making their purchase.
Now let there also be a shrunken, naked man leering at her, and let there be a pile of soup tins hiding his member from view and he should spake thus:

“Gosh, Darling! What a lovely pair you have!”

Now let the beautiful woman reply: “Yes, I intend to make melon boats with ginger at dinner tonight.”

And let the leering man reply to that: “No Poppet, I meant your breasts. They are fabulous. They would look so good with my dick between them!”

Now let the greengrocer shout: “Get out of my shop you filthy pervert!”

Perhaps you can think of more ideas for straightforward saucy seaside postcards?

Monday, August 03, 2009

Align Centre

ithout the inclination towards philanthropia, man is a busy, mischievous, wretched thing; no better than a kind of vermin, Maroon.”

“Well quite, but I did give at the office.”
“You gave at the office did you?”
“To The West of Scotland Red Crescent?”
“No matter, roll up your sleeve. Still smoking?”

Today, Dr Al-Abri, company medic, is being a royal pain in the ass with his raffle tickets and charity tins. His manner is a disgrace. When you go in, he is always reading a newspaper or eating a Kit Kat. He just riles me. For some reason he is wearing a brown leather protector over his middle finger and he keeps touching me with the fucking thing, so, to take my mind off it while he straps me up, I read the little acronyms he writes across the cover of my file. The latest is HIBGIA; no, not a wasting of the liver, but “Had It Before, Got It Again”.

“Hypertension: it's the silent killer, Maroon.”

And, sure as Death, the examination rumbles on to The Display And Consideration Of The Maroon Private Parts and I follow like a lamb, knowing he’s going to have his hairy fingers pressing up on my sweaty groin while I look down into his liquid brown eyes. Thankfully, there is nothing like a biennial finger to fetch out the racist homophobe.

“Did you bring a sample?”

I take it out my pocket and because I have just done it in the disabled toilet, it is still hot. He holds it up to the window, quite fascinated; then he turns it over like an egg timer, spellbound,

“Is this what I think it is?”
“What do you mean?”
“It looks fine, but I was expecting pee not semen.”
“No way! Your letter is all about a “Well Man” examination. There is a whole paragraph on prostate and testicular cancer, and em, fertility, erectile problems, discoloured ejaculate, and then, then it asks for a sample in the Sterilin bottle provided. This is your bloody fault, not mine.”

I am scanning the letter as I blurt all this out and for the first time in 10 readings I see the word urine.

“How did you get it in the bottle?”
“Get lost Ali, I ain't in the mood.”
“And again.”

And then he snarks away to himself for a full minute.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

here is no oil for the lamps.

“What is truth?” said Pilate; and then, like me, he pissed off quick for fear he got an answer. Well, I shall just tell you: Truth is a very grey area; very, very grey.
I mention Pilate because oftentimes at Cambridge, I would dream of the Roman goddess Levana and wonder when her bestowed gifts would kick in. It was my Jesuit schooling impinging you see. I am positive it would have totally buggered up a lesser man. Made him shifty and withdrawn perhaps. Not me. You see, by then I had developed a strategy to cope:drugs and cunning.
My panacea, my φαρμακον νηπενθες, * was and is, strong drink and the Jesuits taught me the cunning.
The upshot is, that by my clever deployment of what might be called "turning the cat in the pan", certain things have come to light; it turns out that I am not to blame after all for our local difficulties in Araby and am to be sent back like Gandalf the White, to finish off what weak men could only begin. I am sent back out to Saudi, v soon. Can’t wait. Before you know it, I’ll be in the compound rumpus room playing Islamic bingo.

We have a local bingo caller, (works for Mecca).

“Right guys and guys, eyes cast down for a full house…

Eye for an eye…number one,
Clicketty click…car-bomb timer,
All the ones…nine-eleven
Number eight…old enough
Seven and six…seventysix, strokes of the lash, was she worth it?
Four-oh…virgins in paradise
Number ten…British pig dog Satan
Number nine…Mullah’s orders
Eighty eight…two fat ladies, how can you tell?
Six and nine...sixty-nine…oral sex
Top of the house...ninety-nine...beard of the Prophet…”

* “drug banishing sorrow” pronounced pharmacon nehpenthes.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

I am to be sent home in disgrace (medevac) for the good of the contract and company name. They sent out a director to give me the black spot. I thought I was to be promoted.
“I’m sending you home on leave without the option, before you really fuck up.” was how he put it.
He broke the news to me at that vile breakfast stroke lunch affair which exemplifies company life in overseas compounds.

That "I Hate Maroon" menu in full.

Mixed Grilling:
I'm-For-The Chop
With Contract Bedevilled Kidneys
& Frazzled Liver.
Not-Bringing-Home-The Bacon
Served With Hash-Of-It Browns And Has Beans.

Eggs Interdict

Plat Du Monde: Ciao Mein

Desserts Du Jour:
In A Jam Roly-Poly
Eton Mess Of It

To Drink:
Aqua Miserable

Chef De Parti: Harry Vidercci.

* * *

Saturday, July 04, 2009

I am sure you know the story of Vedran Smajlović, the Cellist of Sarajevo, who played 22 consecutive days in Peter’s Square under the murderous Serbian mortars. I am equally sure, that few of you will have heard of “The Bagpiper Of Dundee” who yesterday played 20 consecutive minutes at the Nethergate under the glass canopy until he had made enough for a bottle of Emva and a Gregg’s macaroni pie.

As part of the ongoing international effort in the former Yugoslavia, Unicef has twinned Sarajevo with other European towns one of which is our own City of Discovery.
In the nature of these things, the twinning committee toured the devastation in an open-topped bus. The Mexican delegate was particularly moved. Shaking his head sadly, his eyes filling with furious tears; “Serbian bastards!” he swore, his arm sweeping to encompass the whole of the Lochee housing estate.

Monday, June 22, 2009


Sunday, June 21, 2009

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Thank God for the bomb.

I am acutely aware that by 14.58 BST today, Boris Johnson and Cameron (I forget his first name; is it Ian?) have already accomplished a lot.

They are old Etonians you see. I am of an age when all my heroes were Etonians. It was the only school worth mentioning. In fact a college. Now my school was a college too, and we had the twin chips on our shoulders of being Scotch and Jesuit. Beat that! Let Eton flourish? Let Glasgow Flourish!

I’ve met three; Etonians that is. They were très good company and as tough as nails and had that effortless English quality of being at ease. I became quite friendly with one, for a while, a year or so, during various crises in the world of agriculture. We emailed regularly, got pissed a few times home and away, had him home to dinner, that sort of thing. I would meet him at the airport and he had that superb way of looking very grateful to be met. Perhaps he was. Anyway, we got on. He was elevating company. What a leech I am. He liked malt whiskies and I have an "in" where malt whisky is concerned and would press white labelled bottles of Glen Farclas 1968 (62% ABV) on him as he left for London.

I foolishly dropped all my network a while back. Pissed them against the wall like the faux Benzedrine I was guzzling at the time.

To get back to the subject; I, on the other hand, have done sweet Fanny Adams today.

Because I am not an Old Etonian?


Because I am an old, hopeless, worthless aunt with an autumnal timor mortis perched on my shoulder the size of a parrot.

OH bee tee doubleyou Pat, a "Frenchie" is a kiss, nothing more. Shame on you if you thought otherwise.

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Some lines on Maroon stepping from the closet.

‘Twas in the year two thousand and nine, on a cold summer’s day,

That poor Doctor Maroon woke a la William Ard, to find he was gay,
He had retired to bed early, totally straight (and utterly pissed)
So imagine the mental turmoil to awake as a homosexualist.

His revelationary conversion to soft furnishings and indirect lighty,
Made him feel like Pseudo-Dionysius the Areopagite,
“Oh me! Oh my!” he said, I must sit on this news,
Yet the camp old sod couldn’t resist praising his lady-friend’s shoes,

“This just puts the tin hat on it.” thought the impecunious gay git,
“When Poor Mother finds out, she’ll have a violent, possibly fatal, conniption fit,”
“Well that’s just too bad.” he flounced, “all I ever was, was her glorified chauffeur,”
And he danced a defiant little hornpipe, being now shocking light in the loafer.

“I knew all along.” lied Jayne-Marie, a girl with the morals of a stoat,
“Anyone could tell he was as bent as a three pound note.”
“Where will it end?” thought the clapped out, pissed up, academic Nobel dreamer,
Now admitting his love of stage musicals and sparkly drapes, the sad old screamer.

Saturday, June 06, 2009

Let’s review the evidence.
Shall we?
Painful muscle pull, lower back, left side.
Bruising various odd places. Very odd places.
General feeling of having gone 3 rounds with Turkish boxer.
Alarming record of various latenight calls on cell phone
Still fully dressed.
Yes I think I had a good night last night.
I must pad the furniture edges like one sees in the houses of the blind
Yeah, blind drunk you aunt.
Ok that’s enough.
Today at the eleventh hour, as the bell tolls, I am cleaning up my act, getting my shit together, taking stock, striding out into the new day. I shall bathe, ablute and dress with care. Full cuff link presentation, pomade on hair, polished boots. I am not a mollusc, I am a free man! Christ give me a drink someone, perllease!

Has the British government fallen yet? I hope not. Good old Mandy. Cometh the hour cometh the man.

Thursday, June 04, 2009

I used to look after this girl's goldfish when they went on holiday.

Stop Press: What a twelvemonth! First it was Ali Bongo then Danny La Rue and now poor Old David Carradine! Oh Grasshopper. Time for you to leave.

"Is that Kung Fu?"

"No, he's choked the chicken."

Friday, May 29, 2009

When it comes to Liverpool fans, this must be the BEST result ever.

However, give us a chance.
The best footballer ever, was this man.

Monday, May 25, 2009

The worst of watching a parent age and die is the conversation. We long for the meaningful conversation that we despised when we were young. Overnight our parents become inane. What’s more, they revel in it. They punish us. When we were younger we begged them to talk like other kid’s parents especially when our friends (those other kids) were round for a snog and the burning of joss sticks.

Fucking hell mum don’t make a dissertation out of it. This isn’t a question of politics or human morals, noble spirit, deferred gratification; we got drunk on cider and the girls put make up on us like David Bowie, move on for fuck’s sake, and write me a note for school. (no fucking way).

Now we wish they would return to their rigour and shut the fuck up about just how terribly nosey is Mrs Wickes in number 11 (I think she is lonely) or the total, total, lack of urbanity in restaurants or in Boots the chemist, or with tradesmen looking at the ceiling.

Fucking hell, how do they manage to shed a lifetime of propriety, etiquette (which they imprinted on US by the way- ie never make anyone uncomfortable by your presence or speech or table manners) so easily? Piff paff poff and it’s like it never happened. After seventy something, they don’t give a flying fuck.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Some interesting root canal work this morning at around 10 am local time...

So far this evening,
600mg Ibuprofen
1500mg Paracetamol
45mg codeine
1.5lt sparkling perry
35 cl rum type tincture 50%ABV (Approx) with diet cherry coke.
4 hours sleep in last 48

Feeling chust sublime.


Why the fuck not?

Here’s Joe Cocker.

Cocker! Snitter snitter fnar…

Oh, there are concrete mountains in the city…

Yeah and some Joni as well.

Oh it gets so lonely, when you're walkin' and the streets are full of strangers...

Hey if you don't like it...

It's Saturday and I'm in and I'm playing my records alright?

And some Bernstein

I like the island of Manhattan

Monday, May 18, 2009

Align Centre

ut on a limb

My creditors are avowed to kill me.
“If you do not make full and timeous restitution –in full, we will kill you.”
Such Little Men. Such ambiguity.
Poor old Dropshaft. Aware that life is a delusion and responsible for his situation.
So then, here I am in Jeddah. The dust and fumes would kill an ox. My urine is fluorescent; either from the tablets or the cid or dehydration. During the day I contend with shifty Arabs and in the evening I suffer the music of a talentless sod called Dizzy Twat telling everyone he’s bonkers.
One night around ten, we went to a convenience store like Bohack or Budgens to buy sugar and yeast and a pressure cooker. Bit suspicious? Not a bit of it. We kept up an innocent conversation throughout.
What’s on the list Hugh? (Always a good prop, a list.) Let’s see, sugar -for our baking. How much? 20 kilos. Oh and some yeast of course. Yes Hugh, we will need yeast also: for the baking of the bread etc. Look at these pressure cookers, very nice. Yes let’s get one for our English stews and hotpots. Oh remember our central heating is playing up, we could do with some micro bore copper pipe. Here’s some here! Anything else Hugh? Yes, these hickory chips will make a nice barbeque (Jack Daniels flavouring) And so on.
Everything is stacked next to each other on the shelf. Elliot Ness would shit bricks. “They put one of oursh in the hoshpital, we put one of theirsh in the morgue…
It’s as shaming as buying Asian Beaver or the Peoples Friend but the shop staff are cowed immigrants so fuck em.
Hugh is my line manager. He’s from Warrington. He’s been here way too long. His bide a wee apartment stinks of hooch and flavourings like rum essence and polo mints. His carpets are a fucking disgrace. I think some of it is blood. He hates everything, even the very blackening. Everyone calls him Hugh except the RSAF personnel who call him Mr Janus.

Sunday, May 03, 2009


My best man has been rebuffed by AL Kennedy three times because he is a v=bastardf. His mother was in a coma for three weeks after a road accident and to fill the vacuum I told her I was getting married and promised that her son would be my best man. The machiones didn’t beep she died the following week and I was stuck with the bastard.He was like I am now and I bankrolled him for 31/2 years. I thought nothing of it. I was flush and id known him since way way back. yet now I realise how bloody awful that mustr have been for him. How terrifingly shite that must have been. Too fucking bad. Hes a dreadful alchoholic now and I haven’t spoken to him for twenmty years. My next friend I met at trinity. He was from Dumbarton you couldn’t make it up. On like day two we met said something like, are you scotch? Yeah? Wanna drink? lets go. And that was that. We spent as much time as possible away from the fucking place because we were working class. I ended up eventually taking supervisions, he didn’t. he has a multi billion pond company makinfg umbilicles ifor the north sea oil and gas thing. I went out with him . he showered me this huge unwinding thing. Ti was stultifiingly boring. He has contracts off east anglia . I will not ask him for a job. I think he may have got married and nor asked me to the wedding the cunt. He was at mine and missed being best man by a whuisker. See above. My poor wife , the previous mrs maroon loved him as much as ui did and tried to get me to change it but it was too late. Even I couldn’t break a deathbed promise. I do remember how wanky the whole thing was. There is a maths test at Cambridge it’s a beefed up a level no more and if you get a good mark they call you a wtrangler. Well in the finasl its 5 from 7 and I did the 7 and goty a good mark asnd was called a werang;ler. I was wanky enough toi write “ perm any five from seven” on the bottom of the scrip. Fuck me gently.Max didn’t. and that’s the point,. Undertgraduates doing medieaval French history can do maths at Cambridge. Every cint can do it. anyway there was a surfeit thar year and they all disappeared up yhtere own arses workinf out whjy. Its not a variable bar ill give them that. Tits an absolute anywat its like the debate over a levels now. Are they too easy?. Ironica\lly we examined the statistical correlation ( l;ike that inky?) one of the most dreadful things about an English education is its thoroughness. England is stil even now a country of power and influence and to iknow that one has no part in it is so so cuntish as to be unbearable. We had a post mortem after the event and one of ourgroup a handsome lad called steve asked our supervisor if I really had written that and had I got maximum marks. What a dick. The trouble wqs we could see it was all props. If you pushed the walls they would tip over. Cardboard. His books (doctor loughran) our maths suervisor, if we’d taken them out the selves would have been blank paper we all knew itr but weree too polite to say. the point is I tookm him into my home and family. Max you cuntWhen mrs maroon and I split up he waws there the next day and stayed tewo weeks to make sure I didn’t kill myself. Yeah riught. We had a swell time, pissed constantly and he shaggrd everything going.i have the letter copy of sent to lse saying how wonderful I was. Ill give them that. Neyou know the worst of it? we played on it constantly. Were at Cambridge. We didn’t fit and it was difficult but we played on it. he married a nurse from Cambridge. The town. It was like officer and a genteman. The townies hated us but we ciould stll twist it. next friends are the richest people iknow3.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

The smell hit him when he opened the hut door. He couldn’t place it. Perhaps it was the smell of gentle disappointment.
No, it’s margarine he decided. Margarine and vinyl table covers.
“Oh Maroon,” he sighed piteously.
Life on the lam was going to be difficult.
He stepped in and dropped his suitcase on the bed…

If "Uncle" Otto Ziegler hadn’t had his stroke and fallen in the pool and if his puzzled audience hadn’t assumed it the highlight of his act then Maroon would never have come. The classified in last week’s Stage had been a godsend;

“Hands on” compere and two
coats required for prestige Devon
sunshine resort. Exp. of mediaeval
knight / serving wench not essential.
Live in all found. Immediate start.

To Maroon, a rat on a sinking ship, every word sang out to him with the tantalising “hands on” and “serving wench” providing the descant.
He memorised the number and while he was out shopping in Sainsburys, he called the agent, one Richard (Double) Dekker. They met later that day.

The interview went well. A formality. Maroon had warmed to the theatrical agent instantly which is always a great comfort to the practiced liar. There only remained the crossing of the "i"s as Dekker put it.

“Let’s see…Can we run through the health questionnaire?”
“Of course.”
“No thanks.”
“Uhuh. Do you smoke?”
“Good Lord no.”
“Any skin disease, dizzy spells, headaches or heart trouble?”
“Thanks. No deafness.”
“That’s very kind of you…”
“Yes, good. Um, alcohol, how many units; in a week say?”
“Some weeks would be less.”

The formalities came to a shuddering halt. Dekker was unable to stop himself looking up. He saw at once the narrow necktie streaked with cigarette ash and the swollen brisket and the purple veins around a nose sharp as a pin. He relaxed and smiled.
Maroon on the other hand, felt the scrutiny keenly and cursed the sun which chose now to shine on his ravaged face and checkered jacket. He cleared his throat running a finger around his damp collar, and asked innocently:

“Well, how much is an alcohol unit these days?”
“I’ll put down 50 shall I?”
“There are seven days in a week Maroon. It’s purely for insurance purposes. Besides, all the best comperes are piss ar…look it’s expected, it’s the biz. Take poor Lennie Bennett: smoked like a fish and thirsty as an Arab Mullah…”
“But he died!”
“Never on stage Maroon, never died with his public, no, they loved him and that’s the point. I’ll fill in the rest, you get yourself down to Devon."
And that was that. They shook hands.

“Give Devon my love and tell them I’ll send the two coats stroke serving wenches as soon as.
Break a leg Maroon.”

Monday, April 13, 2009

Achilles Hector Kenneth Maroon.

An Apology:

I apologise unreservedly for the slur neither intended nor implied on the wives of Mr Cameron and Mr Brown the Prime Minister occasioned by my bare-arsed exhibitionism on the weblog named Cape to Rio. I was not overworked or under great stress.

Further, I deeply regret my inconvenience on this most beautiful of Easter Mondays to be stuck inside explaining myself. I am most sorry to be typing this out to an empty screen knowing deep in my heart that public houses across this great land have been open for two hours now, serving cool wines and sandwiches. That, perhaps, is my deepest regret and for that I am more sorry than I can say.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Thursday, April 09, 2009

I had no idea that the back of my head was so ugly.
I shall ask for a taper cut from now on

Some of you, perhaps the sporting physiologists among you (and I know how many there are of you these days) will be wondering, which, is the disabled leg. Take a good look my friends.

Have any of you noticed how both legs get thicker towards the bottom? I mean towards the ground.
Instead of thinning out they thicken up?
Simple explanation; Cycling.
That's right my friend, cycling... and nothing to worry about whatsoever.

Wednesday, April 08, 2009

On Sunday we like to cut sandwiches for our return from the Boston Arms at 3:30. We like old fashioned sandwiches best; smoked salmon, egg and cress, roast beef. We like to arrange them in three piles on paper doilies on the big oblong sandwich plate and cover them with a square of muslin.
We like to walk along the river in the afternoon to work up our appetites. When we come in, we get the wine from the fridge and the sandwiches from the pantry and settle to watch deal or no deal. We have a woollen travel rug that we spread over us even if it’s warm because it’s nice and special to do so. We usually bring a surprise home like a small box of chocs or Turkish delight. We like to have a snog during the wine and sandwiches. We like to laugh when someone who is poor ends up with nothing on deal or no deal. We like it when the other contestants start to cry because they look silly. We find it sexy and we like to start petting while Noel Edmunds commiserates with them. We like to have oral when the banker reduces his offer and the poor person tries to smile. Then we like to have more wine and a nap before Gordon Ramsay.

Saturday, April 04, 2009

In 1964 I went to state catholic primary school. What a punch in the guts.
You see, I had spent the preceding year, my gap year, at nursery, expressing myself as a tree or a stickleback or a tadpole or a cotton wool cloud in a blue sky. I had busied my emotional development through the medium of finger paints and Bauhaus wooden toys. The last of the innocent naps always followed lunch and then home in time for Stingray or Fireball XL5.

State catholic primary school in 1964 was a workhouse from 1924. My best friends smelled of damp and stale bread. They had holes in their jumpers. I caught nits. They had bruises and black eyes and purple dye painted on them. They were the poorest, fucked around kids you can imagine.

Shut up Maroon, you are becoming tiresome. You’re nearly fifty, so fucking what? Live, you stupid bastard. That famous picture of the Japanese kids at nursery having their nap in Hiroshima is identical to us having ours. Complete blissful innocence. But then our dads weren’t out raping Nanking were they?

I was extracted in 1965 and sent to protestant primary school. It had activity rooms and French language puppets. It had miniaturised sanitary porcelain in the lavatories. Not to mention a roof over the urinals. It was nice to pee without getting rained on in a place which smelled of carbolic soap and not old man’s piss.

Friday, April 03, 2009

See? There it is again. It’ll put the customers off. The whelks are arranging themselves into disparaging personal attacks. I'm sure of it. The Tortoiseshells are the worst. Troublemakers to a man. The Blue Rounds are little angels by comparison, though I did turn around suddenly to see their tiny feelers out at each other behind my back. Bit rude. The worst are the adolescents,
It’s always out the corner of my eye. By the time I check positively they subtly change their position to a random array. A bit too random I think, but that’s the curse of mathematics. I took some of them down to the river today. A treat. You know, let them stretch their foot. I’m not sure they all came back.


Buggers, did you see that? Yes the adolescents. Clever you see and greased bloody lightning. What a handful. The customers are a rum lot too. I'm fussy you see and I’m not sure people realise the responsibility they are taking on with whelks. I had one ask me for a pin. A pin. He wanted to "winkle" them out their shells. What an utter bastard. I could have struck him. Another asked where the salt and vinegar was. He was an utter as well. I had no idea such cruelty existed. Christ did you see where the tortoiseshells went? Mind where you’re standing will you? There they are - look, halfway down the street. What did I tell you? Greased bloody lightning.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Young woman dies of cancer convinced Rio de Janeiro was a footballer.

Gordon Brown. What the hell was he thinking with his troublesome dirge for poor Jade? He was totally silent about Ali Bongo.

Heston Fuckwit. Peels frogs, (they were quite furious), persuades them up a pig’s back passage then detonates the lot in Cilla Black’s face.

President Obama. Comfy on the couch wasn't he, making remarks about the special Olympics. I didn’t see the suitcase with the nuclear button. He is not a real president, he is a tribute president.

Friday, March 20, 2009


Rockall, Sodall, Bogall…
Carlyle said that the meanest object is a window into infinitude and Grayling remarks that to say that trifles make up the happiness or misery of human life is to voice a cliché no less true for being one.
Dover, Fastnet, fishnet…

I have a young charge who worries me. He is unworldly and besotted with a knowing girl. She has him twirled around her finger leading him a merry dance. I often want to spank her; she has such a way of flicking her skirts at me as she brushes past. She is incorrigible. To make matters worse, this girl is a prodigy and favourite of her aunt, a lady-friend of mine, so I see where matters will lead.

As you know, I have lived a life after my own lights. A disastrous car crash of a life; fuelled by strong drink and a misplaced laissez-faire attitude to money and women.
Often, I have been found vomiting twin writhing serpents of guilt and alcohol down others’ pristine toilet bowls. And always, with the last aching heave, the viper of guilt releases her entwined twin, to slide backwards into my mouth, to rest calm and comfortable somewhere inside me, for another day, for another disaster. No emetic will shift that one. Not she.
A costly burden to be borne, “In Perpetua”.

To remind me, I had a trifle run up at Asprey’s. A ring I wear now and then when I feel vulnerable. It was to this ring, that I referred when I took my young charge aside to advise:

“Do you see this ring, Ewan?"
“What of it?"
“Do you see how it is formed?”
“Do you see how the two serpents are encoiled around an emerald named “Bile”?
“It’s ‘the ring of Barahir’, Uncle Ack”
“Aragorn’s ring”
“No, it's Asprey’s.”
“Lord of the Rings merchandising.”
“No it’s not, it’s mine - This viper is called ‘Guilt’…”
“You can get them on eBay for £30. All the Trekkies wear them.”
“Right, here’s £50. Fuck off out of it for an hour and take Jane Marie with you.”

Sunday, March 15, 2009

It’s that time again. Summer is coming and summer’s lease has all too short a date. To wit, the Guardian has published the lists of post graduate studies available to the fearful or work-shy. How times have changed. No PgD.s are available at LSE, it’s all MSc.s now. How ghastly.
I will never forget my interview with whatshisname of the Cambridge Appointments Board; I was sent for. A mid morning slot.

I told myself:
“This is it Maroon, you’ve been plucked, you’ve trailed your coat, been talent spotted and Britain’s imperial service are here for you (or Shell at the very least). Now remember kiddo, they’re not interested in the facts, just an ability to stick to a good back story.”

He was the most repellant individual I have ever seen. He drank tea throughout, never offering me a cup (rude) and he opened up his Kit Kat, spread the silver paper flat and methodically broke the fingers in two, placing the eight bits in parallel rows like soldiers. It was disquieting watching this. Distracting. He was like Joseph Mengele. He had horrible fingernails, I remember that much.
He took a while to get going.

“Any thoughts what you’d like to do when you leave here Maroon?” (what happened to Achilles, or even Ack?)
"Hmmm. Well, what are your interests? Which FIELD excites you?”

I had to stifle a snigger here, exciting fields; geddit? It’s electromagnetism!

“I hadn’t really thought…”
“Well OK. Here’s a list of courses you could probably take while you decide. Thanks awfully for coming in.”

Second top of the list was a safe berth at LSE. It was, I realise now, a contented, almost happy time. It was a little railway siding where old wagons were shunted, you know, off the Titfield branch line. I was surrounded by the kids of commonwealth diplomats who would go on to rescue Africa from financial ruin, in much the same way as political satire in 1930s Berlin cabaret, saved Germany from fascism.
Anyway, it looks as if Beecham made it to Houghton Street eventually.
Sic transit.

Kids today can choose Gender Studies (we did that), Hospitality Management (did that too), even Celtic Studies (haven’t a clue). the difference being they are all Saturday’s children now, poor sods.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

It's Saturday! It's the sixties! It's the Beatles!

It's still Saturday! It's the Rolling Stones! (for Pat and me and Scarlet too)

It's still Saturday! It's the Doors! (for Sarah and me)

For Clarissa

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Ali Bongo Dead!
Irish not to blame says hospital spokesman.

In a sad announcement that rocked the world of magic, the death of beloved madcap magician Ali Bongo was put down to age, cardiac arrhythmia, stroke and finally pneumonia. An ashen faced agent Manny Cohen added that no Irish involvement in his demise could be found or inferred.
Last night First and Deputy First Minister of the Northern Ireland Assembly and the Irish Taoiseach were united in their relief at the conjurer’s non Irish downfall.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Muslims, ain’t they mental? Of course they are. Our boys fight for their rights and get an ear bashing on their return to barracks. We’ve given them Moslems the right to protest and the bastards have taken it. There’s gratitude for you. Manners maketh the man. They are so graceless. Luton's full of them, jumping about in inappropriate clothes, baggy pyjamas and so forth.

Go and try it in any Moslem country, Ali, and just see how far you get. In fact, just piss off out of it and take your bonkers medieval Caliphate shit with you. We’re tired of you all, you are turning into royal pains in the arse so just clear off to some wonderful muslem country. Oops there aren’t any.

And what about the Irish? They phone up the police because their window has been put in and when they arrive to help, they get shot for their trouble. That’s not War in any man’s language, that’s murder. You don’t shoot people who are trying against the odds, to help. Gits.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Cornwall, the master spy and author, returns endlessly to two themes. The small crippled double agent (whoever he was) and the immobilising anxiety borne when working in hostile territory.
As you know, I undertake business on behalf of MOSSAD and I must say it’s catching up on me. Every morning I pad the floors like Samson in the wilderness seeking what he might devour and I listen to the breaths of we innocents.
Every footfall turns my insides to junket and an evil wind gathers around the blackest kernel of my malignant soul. “Be you the white tornado?” I ask. The answer is indistinct.
“Go home to Israel.” I hear you mutter over your anti Semitic breakfasts.
Alas I cannot, for it is my purpose to bear witness, no matter the cost; and believe me, the price is high.
I observe.
I see too much. I see people laughing, shopping, couples in cars content to be going somewhere - on the move. I see the wasteland strewn with hollow lives lived to a formula handed them by a dreadful power. There is no redemption. There is no mint sauce for the lamb on their dinner plates. God help us.
I also see that the Bee and Drainpipe is open. Yes, I shall step in here for a quick gum freezer. My handler is due and I have news to impart. Not for us the rattle-tattle-tat of hidden Morse transmitters. We use the regular dialogue of lady and gentleman. Ah, here he comes, the Duke of Cambridge, I’d recognise that brisket anywhere.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Masterchef final or
Ten Years Younger?

Oh, before we go any further; I am one ugly bastard.
I don’t mean ugly in a rugged, or hang dog, or interesting way. I mean pot fucking ugly in a weird ugly way. Not only that, I am ugly on the inside as well.
What ya gonna do?
You see, Time without measure in the past, in Limbo, I was assigned the wrong earthly vessel for my soul.
It was an admin error. Honestly.
I remember it like yesterday.

I was queuing up with all the other souls and it was busy that morning and there was a lot of high spirits and friendly jostling. So we calmed down a bit and we're all floating in an orderly line in our persil-white gowns and I noticed the smallest of smuts on my character. It must have come off an agnostic or something, anyway, tiny it was, a speck, I should have left it alone but I had to rub at it didn’t I? Well, I made it much worse, so I hid it, besmirching stain that it was; I hid it in a diaphanous fold.
See the whole thing was sleeveless, what else could I do?

So I’m queuing up at the dispatch hatch and I noticed it was Antimacassar on the counter. Shit. I’d never got on with him, don’t know why, just didn’t, so I reach the front and he says:

“Name…oh it’s you.”
“Right, let’s see. Ah, we’ve got you down for a good one: number 242/A. very handsome”
“Wait a minute, are those smuts I can see on your heavenly raiment?”
“Yeah but it’ll come out with some Fairy, I’m sure of it”
“I dunno, I think there’s been a big mistake. I think you should have 242/B”
“Fuck off. I'm not taking that one, it's ugly and it's not your decision to make”
“Oh yes it is, now take it and move on, you’re holding up the line”
“Fuck you”
“Your complaint will be processed. Next!…Name please”
“Gregory Peck”
“Right Greg, here we are, 242/A”

Anyway, back to Masterchef. Shaven headed Mat, (as in door, bath, and mouse) will win.

Late Update 01:15

The bastard won it! Press release follows

The 42-year-old's winning menu consisted of a starter of trio of wild rabbit, a main course of spider crab with hand cut chips and sea vegetables, and a dessert of lavender mousse with hokey pokey and a blackberry sauce."

Jesus! What's happened to this country? Do you think he looks like Kim?

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Gail Trimble: Fox or Minger?

With total recall and lightning buzzer finger,
the classically trained Portia single-handedly dragged the dolts of Corpus in her wake.
How long before we see her in Nuts or FHM? Wouldn’t it be great?
What about a flash of her knickers as she disembarks a limo, out on the town with Lilly Allen?

Or a tasteful bikini series, rolling on some beach in Antigua with her boffin boyfriend?

I can see it now:
Gail’s Hunk Gets A Starter For Ten!

She will be on the cover of the Oxford prospectus for years.

Full-time team analysis.

Kay: 3/10 his wrong answers and gormless expression were a joy.

Swartzman: 7/10 contributed well in the final but definitely cross-eyed.

Trimble (cptn): 10/10 tactical maestro gave Manchester enough rope then crucified them.

Marsden: 4/10 foppish hair and total ignorance, a throwback ripe for ridicule.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Back down to 12 followers?
Who baled on me?
Come back ya bastard.

You may be interested to know that I stayed up late last night to watch a biopic of Jackson Pollock. It was très bon. The actress playing his wonderful talented wife was magnificent and heid-the-ba was good too, although he relied on his physical resemblance a lot.
Look, never mind about that. The point is, I am one of very few people I know, who get his pictures. Ha! How cool is that? I know, it’s fantastic isn’t it?
It is because I was exposed to them at something like three or four year old, followed by seeing film of him at work in his studio on TV when I was about seven, followed by a TV discussion where he was rubbished when I was nine and then that unfunny prick Tony Hancock spoofed him in some shit film too.

I am not a critic so I can’t communicate what he has communicated to me, but there’s an emotional reaction, then a realisation that it’s the intended emotional reaction and then when you realise that, there’s a third layer when you say fuck! It’s at a machine code level so all I can say is it is fantastic and mesmerising and overpowering and all encompassing in some telepathic mira
culous way. See? I told you I couldn’t tell you, and now you think I’m mental and a patronising wanker to boot. Tough.

I have never read any criticism of his work in case I’ve got it all wrong and the philistines burst my bubble; I don’t have the st
rength of my conviction.

Anyway, I say he was a giant and a genius and he was overwhelmed when he discovered his technique. I have seen some originals in Glasgow, Liverpool, London, New York and Washington so I know what I’m talking about.
If I were a millionaire I’d buy one and stare at it.