Showing posts with label Entertainment. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Entertainment. Show all posts

Thursday, 25 August 2011


Whenever I try to ring anyone on my mobile, I find myself having to dangle by my feet out of the fucking window in order to get a signal. Either that, or go outside so the GoldenEye satellite can get a fix on me and triangulate my Nokia. And that, my friends, is because the mobile phone network in this country is utter dogshit. You may recall that a few weeks ago I was spunking all over my new 'non O2' network Giffgaff, and waxing about how good it was. And to be honest, my opinion hasn't changed. It's outstanding value for money. The only downside is that it still runs on the O2 network...a network that, in all honesty, is about as reliable as an Alfa Romeo without an engine. So, you can imagine my interest when the BBC released a network map of the UK that details the coverage of the 3G signal.

Where I currently reside (and in the vast majority of rural locales I find myself in), you can count yourself lucky if you can get two bars of 2G signal, let alone 3G so all these people with smart phones and other devices that rely on a high-capacity data connection in order to function - forget it. And yet the major networks are all getting giddy about the impending 4G standard that should start rolling out in the next few years.

Now, I'm by no means a telecommunications expert, but here's an idea O2, T Mobile, Vodafone and the rest of you cunts: how about sorting out the 3G coverage before you start looking at moving to 4G? Just an idea. Oh, and while you're at it, how about extending it beyond the boundaries of London? How fucking brazen can you get: I was listening to Talksport the other day - a national radio station - and I heard an advert for Vodafone that was boasting about how good their signal was in London. London! Fucking great! What about the rest of the country you douchebags?! I realise that a lot of people who reside in our nation's capital are probably oblivious to the fact, but there are other places that exist outside of the boundary of London y'know. Sheesh.

But I'm digressing. The crux of what I'm bitching about is this: what's the point of trying to improve the data capacity of the mobile network in this country if the current one is still a pile of festering arse? Surely it'd be cheaper and more useful to improve the 3G coverage as more people currently own compatible handsets. The mind, my friends, boggles.

Other news: Steve Jobs has finally stepped down as the head honcho at the world's most pretentious company. Thinking of sending him a farewell card with a note asking for the reimbursement of the money I wasted on multimple iPods over the years before I realised they were SHIT and stopped buying them. As I've mentioned here in thepast, I've cracked my way through several iPods in my time simply because they stop working for various reasons. Batteries stop holding a charge, chargers break, buttons stop working...I could go on. Anyway, on the subject of mp3 players, my last one (a Phillips GoGear Vibe) died earlier this week and so I needed a replacement to use while running. I headed to Tesco and found this thing for a mere £9.50:

Yes, it looks like something Miley Cyrus might shit out, but I'm quite impressed with it. It's a Samsung Tictoc, and it's clearly aimed at teenage girls, but I'm open-minded. And tight as fuck too, so the £9.50 price-tag was a deal-breaker for me. It's quite an odd contraption - there's only one button but it takes on multiple functions depending on how you orientate the device. Press the button while it's facing upwards and it increases the volume, press it while it's facing the floor and the volume decreases. Press the button while holding the thing horizontally and it skips tracks etc etc etc. It's a bit like a Wii, but in mp3 form. Without a shit-load of rubbish games. Or the layer of dust as it sits under the TV unused since the last strained dinner party with your wife's work friends. Or the stench of the death of Nintendo as a proper games company wafting through the room.

I'm digressing again. So I'll stop.

Monday, 23 August 2010

The Week That Was

Hola. It's been a week since I last updated and a fair bit has gone on. Well, a 'fair bit,' when compared to the usual amount of non-stuff that happens in my weeks away from this hallowed keyboard. Non-stuff. Hmmm. Could be a worthy entry in the Newspeak dictionary of 1984. Anyway, yeah - I've been away for a week but now I'm back grinding out the night shift for the next seven. Pfft. I can see myself getting to Wednesday before I start to hate all of humanity and the entire pantheon of creation on Earth, due to the cranium-destroying boredom and tiredness that is associated with my current post. Hopefully the vast collection of reading materials I have amassed will tide me over. Bit of Lovecraft, bit of Orwell...and maybe even a tiny little bit of Dan Brown's latest novel, The Lost Symbol, if I can prise it from a colleague's gnarled talons.

Went to a driving range on Monday. Was a bit elitist, being in deepest, darkest Dorset and all, and when me and my accomplice entered the club shop in order to collect some clubs/get some tokens for the ball machine (er...where you get the golf balls from) there was a sudden change in the courteousness of the old twat behind the counter. Probably because neither of us speak like we have broom handles wedged up our rectums and weren't wearing chinos and pink tank-tops. But nonetheless, we acquired some 'irons' and some balls and proceeded to smack them up a range for a good hour or so. Was quite a good laugh and I actually went again later in the week for round two. Probably won't make me want to dress up like a prize prick and take up the 'sport' proper, but visiting the driving range is something I might be tempted to do with more regularity after trialling it this past week.

Tuesday saw me take a trip out to visit a mate at his flat. We played on the Xbox for a bit and then, inevitably went to get a few cans of 'refreshment' from a local shop. This then turned into a load of other people turning up at his gaff and us both being coerced into visiting a local town for a few more 'quiet drinks.' It was a fairly uneventful night to be honest, and certainly didn't involve me relapsing and doing everything I poured scorn on in one of my recent posts - i.e. getting wankered and spending a shit load of cash on booze...although it did see me get twatted by a group of bouncers and then taken to the hospital for a head X-ray. I won't go into the details of the story but it involved me being refused entry to a bar, me trying to gain entrance, and then me being punched to the ground and having my head jumped on by several rather burly gentlemen clad in black bomber jackets. Police, ambulance, X-ray, yadda yadda yadda. I ended up with two black eyes, a broken nose and various other cuts and bruises...which I'll bet looked a treat here at work the following night when I covered a mate's shift on the Desk of Doom (TM). Quite brilliantly, my wounds seem to have healed with amazing rapidity and now, barely 5 days later, the only signs of my beating are a slightly bruised right eye and a scab on my elbow. Ain't the human body ace?!

Wednesday I recovered (a bit) and did the aforementioned night shift. Thursday I went to Lidl and gawped at the weird and wonderful foreign scran they sell there. Seriously, if the one nearest to me was closer than Tesco, I reckon it'd be my supermarket of choice. They've got all kinds of shit in there that you'd never get in ASDA or Tesco. And it's cheap as fuck too. May make an extra effort to get over there more often in the future.

On Friday I just chilled with one of my mates (who, incidentally has had my Dreamcast in his possession for the last two months, and has completed about 20 of my games...something I've not managed in 5 years of owning it), watched Roadhouse (yeah, that shit Patrick Swayze film), ate sausage & mash and just generally loafed about in a pit of filth. It was just like being back at university...but on a military base. Frankly, it was awesome - you've gotta love working over leave periods. But I digress. Went over to see my ladyfriend at the weekend and we indulged in various activities including a visit to an abandoned town called Tyneham. Tyneham, according to the various articles on the net, was cleared of it's population during WWII when the US Army set up a tank training range nearby. The people left all of their belongings there but never returned after the war, so there's this eerie abandoned village just there, slowly falling to bits in the middle of the countryside. It's pretty cool to see it all there and fully open for the public to wander around in. Some of the buildings (the Parish church and the school house) have been renovated and are like mini museums to the history of the town, but the rest of them are empty shells.

On Sunday, I was persuaded to go to the cinema and endure The Sorcerer's Apprentice. I was fully expecting it to be a complete load of shite...but I must admit to being fairly impressed. In case you have no idea what the fuck I'm on about, it's the new Nic Cage film and is about some young lad who is a descendant of Merlin and who is the last saviour of mankind. Fairly bog-standard stuff, I'm sure you'll agree, but there are a few laughs and some excellent magic-filled fight scenes. After that, I enjoyed an amazing Sunday roast (all 20,000 calories of it), and today I came back to reality. Which is where I now reside. And will continue to do so for the next seven nights...but it's not all face-shatteringly bad: I'm off to Paris in two weeks' time. And that will be superb.

So, 'till the next time I can be arsed to update: bonjour mi amigos. Or some shit.

Tuesday, 10 August 2010

Austerity Measures

Well here we are, only 10 days into the month of August and already I'm worrying about having no money. How? Well, it's down to my age old problem of going out on the piss and spending way, way too much money. It's something I do far too regularly for my own liking and it's got to fucking stop sooner rather than later. Here's the scenario: I go out on a Friday or Saturday night. I plan to spend a set amount, say £30, so I take it out of the cash machine before the evening begins. A few hours later and after several pints of lager or cider, I decide that I'm not drunk enough yet (I'm probably smashed already, I hasten to add) and then proceed back to the cash point and draw out another ridiculous sum of money. Cue more drinking, ridiculous behaviour and waking up in the morning with a massive hangover, feelings of regret and a gigantic hole in my bank balance. And this destructive cycle has happened not once or twice, but thrice this month so far. And I'm fucking sick of myself for it.

Granted, the nights out I've had have been pretty good, but this is besides the point. By the middle of the month, I don't want to be scabbling around in the dirt for enough money for some petrol, a loaf of bread or a day out. It's no way to live and after next month's trip to Paris (more later), it fucking ENDS.

The nights out? Well, the main one was a trip to Bristol that culminated in a stay in a backpacker's hostel. It was a really good night out to be fair and I always enjoy taking in the experience of an unfamiliar city, it's just that the excursion signalled the start of my week of unbridled spending. That was on the Friday. The Sunday saw me take a car trip up to Manchester and the petrol wasn't exactly cheap, and the following few days were a flurry of nights out, meals and trying to entertain myself while various friends and family members were at work. As a side note, I must stress that whenever I do go back home, I kind of feel obliged to go out with alarming regularity simply because I have various groups of friends that are totally unconnected and others who can never make agreed meetings due to working hours etc. I obviously feel honoured that people actually want to see me and make arrangements to do's just that it all adds up price-wise. Which leads to my current and rather boring predicament.

Anyway, I'm back at work now and I fucking hate it, but what can one do? At least sitting here and writing this crap, worrying about what I've done and how I'm going to survive the rest of the month means I can't go out and blow the meagre sum I have left on ridiculous, wasteful and unessecary sheight. Urgh. Speaking of work though, I believe I only have around 5 months left in this truly hideous position before I am 'drafted' back into my actual, trained branch. I can't actually put into words how happy this makes me feel...but more about this (maybe) in a future post.

Anyway, must try to stay positive and learn from my mistakes. Although changing the habit of a lifetime will be tough. But tough it must be, or I'll never break this fucking horrendous cycle. I need to start saving, so that's what I'm gonna do instead of go out drinking and wasting money. You'll see. In exactly one year from this post, I'll tell you how much I've managed to save up. Mark my words.

Next week (Monday) I'm off to see the final show of Jimmy Carr's UK tour down in Weymouth with my lady. Actually really looking forward to it. I saw Frankie Boyle live in Bournemouth a few months back and he was brilliant so I'm expecting similar things from Carr. Well, he's pretty funny on TV so I'm guessing it'll be more of the same at his live show, right?! Knowing my luck though, Jimmy Carr will fall ill the day before the show and we'll have to endure an hour and a half of Lenny Henry instead as a back-up act. A man so unfunny he makes cancer look like Shooting Stars.

Random interlude: I had no idea Scott Mills, the Radio 1 DJ, is a big gay. I read it on this thing called the 'Pink List' on the Sunday Telegraph website when I logged on to the internet this morning. I thought it might have just meant he was a gay icon or some shit, but when I looked at his Wikipedia page, it confirmed that Mills came out in 2001 and now prefers the cock. He kept that quiet. Let me clarify that this in now way changes my opinion that the guy is the most tolerable of all the cunts who spout their shite on that godawful station, I just found it quite suprising. Probably won't listen to him anymore, like, but hey. And for those who can't tell - that was a JOKE. Not the gay bit...the not listening bit...erm...

Cough. Anyway.

Decided to smash though all of George Orwell's back catalogue after reading his classic 1985 last week. I've already read Animal Farm and bits of The Road to Wigan Pier, but that was years ago so I'm starting again. This time, however, I'm starting with Down and Out in Paris and London....something I'm likely to be next month if I don't try my damnedest to save some of the remnants of this month's wage to supplement my/our jaunt to the French capital at the beginning of September.

Tuesday, 20 July 2010

Nights into Dreams

Something is wrong. I finished my shift at 0630 this morning and only managed to get about 2 and a half hours sleep before I had to get up again...and I've been up since then (and been to the gym. And Tesco. And Gamestation), but yet I don't feel even slightly tired. True, I've had about 15 cups of coffee today, but still - I should surely be feeling some kind of lethargy. Maybe it'll kick in at 3am and I'll get court-martialled for falling asleep on duty. Ah well.

As I mentioned just a few sentences ago, this afternoon saw me venture to Gamestation with all of my 360 games with a view to swapping them for something I'll actually play. Previous hopes of getting a good trade-in value for Modern Warfare 2 didn't come to fruition though, as the cunts would only give me £18.50 for six (yes - SIX) games. They were: Fifa 09, Fifa 10, Modern Warfare 2, Red Faction: Guerrilla and Project Gotham 3. I left with Lost Planet 2 and Project Gotham 4. Doesn't really add up thet - especially considering that I also had to pay an extra fiver. But hey. Fresh games come at a price.

Not played PGR 4 yet, but Lost Planet 2 appears to be quite a good shooter in which you get to run around a jungle shooting massive aliens with massive guns. I'll post more in-depth thoughts on it when I've played more than the first few chapters, but initial impressions are positive.

Speaking of jungles, guns and aliens - I went to see Predators last week. Wish I hadn't bothered. That's because it's a nonsensical load of old bilge. Sure - it's better than both of the AvP movies (fuck, eating dog shit is more enjoyable than either of those celluloid carbuncles), but there are so many "eh?!" moments peppered throughout the film that I left with more questions than answers as to what the fuck was going on. OK - I get the basic premise: humans are dropped onto an alien world and then hunted by the Predators...but why is that other Predator strung up on that totem pole thing? And why do the 'dog' things disappear halfway through? And why is Lawrence Fishburn a big fat cunt if he's been living off the land and fighting Predators for so long? And what's with all the half-assed pseudo references to the first film? See where I'm going with this? Basically, I didn't like it. It wasn't a complete disaster (see AvP Requiem for that), but it was well below par in my humble opinion. I just hope the rumoured Aliens prequels end up being semi-decent, or I'm giving up on both franchises.

I might go and watch Inception next week as it's one film I've been looking forward to for some time. That, and Di Caprio's movies are generally quite good. In fact, most of the films I've seen with him in have been pretty damn decent: The Aviator, The Beach, The Departed, Catch Me If You Can...the list goes on. Hopefully Inception will be added to that list, and if the reviews are anything to go by, it won't disappoint. The only slight issue I have with the concept of the movie is thus: all of the 'dream' clips I've seen tend to be set in real-word locations like cities or hotel corridors etc. How often do actual dreams resemble anything like real life? Sure, some do, but the vast majority of my dreams (well, the ones I can remember) seem to take place either in completely unrealistic places or just 'nowhere' and don't actually have a narrative or logical sequence of events. OK- maybe having dream sequences in a film where a frying pan just floats about in front of a rainbow wouldn't actually lend itself to any kind of decent or coherent storyline, but Hollywood always makes 'dreams' out to be totally legible things - not just a load of completely random bollocks...which is what the vast majority of mine are. Just thinking out loud, people.

Anyway. I'm off to heat up some ASDA Smart Price soup in the microwave. Now that's the stuff of dreams. Or is it nightmares?

Perplexions of a Dangerous Mind

Howdy. Been off for the past week and couldn't be arsed writing owt. That, and it's been quite sunny so I've had no inclination to sit indoors on my laptop writing arse just for no fucker to read. But now I'm back for another week of the dreaded night shift, so blog away I will!

Just read on the BBC News website that PC Zone magazine is closing down in September. Seems that a lot of mags are being wound down at the moment because no-one is buying them. I'm not particularly fussed about PC Zone shutting it's doors as I've probably only read it once or twice (I've always been more of a PC Gamer kinda guy), but it's still sad that yet another mag is going to the wall. During my teenage years, my whole life was gaming - buying/swapping games, talking about games, arguing about games, fighting - yes, fighting - about games and reading/writing about games. I was obsessed with games and more to the point, games mags. I regularly bought about 3 or 4 of the things a month and still have the vast majority of them stacked up in a bedroom at my dad's gaff. There are hundreds of them and if someone with a sadder life than mine actually wanted to arrange them in date order (requests via email, peeps), you could probably see which console I had at the time due to the leanings in the purchased content.

I used to get CVG and Gamesmaster every month anyway, but along with those I bought stuff like Mean Machines Sega, Saturn Power, Official Saturn Mag, N64 Magazine, DC-UK, Dreamcast Magazine etc. Because of the mags, It soon came about that I started to think that maybe I could become a games journalist and began writing reviews for a local newspaper (South Manchester Area News...anyone know if it's still going?!). I did that for about 2 years all in all and got paid £20 per article...which was a fair old bit for a tramp like me back then. As usual, this isn't going anywhere - I just thought I'd regale you with a tale of Tomleecee of yore. A trampy, skint cunt who played too many computer games and wanted to write about them for a living. It didn't work out as I planned - I'm in the navy now. But who knows where I'll be in 20 years. I could be the editor of Edge by then. And if I am, I'll sack the whole editorial team and reform the team from Amiga Power circa 1994 and turn it into a decent, fun and entertaining periodical. Edge: taking the fun out of gaming since time began.

So yeah, PC Zone is no more. Which is sad. Sort of.

Did some volunteering last week. I've not suddenly become some kind of charitable avenger of justice - I just did it to avert my attention from the boredom of living in Hades (Somerset). The week before, I signed up with a volunteering website and then someone from the Council rang me a few days later...and viola - the following week I was building a gate in a field. Oh, and removing some graffiti from a fence. And pulling up weeds. It was a pretty good day to be honest and quite a good laugh. I may go back and help out again next week - it certainly beats walking around the town centre on my Jack Jones looking at crap in shops that I don't really want or need but am buying because my life is dull and void of interesting shit. Although, speaking of interesting shit - I'm going to Paris in September with my ladyfriend. Actually quite excited as I've never been to France before - hell, I've never organised a holiday before - so it's a whole new (grown-up(ish)) experience for me. Me - doing 'grown-up' shit. There's an oxymoron right there. Hmmm.

The hotel I've booked is pretty basic (and has received some horrendous reviews), but to be fair - I don't give a flying toss. I spent the early part of my life living in battered wives refuges and homeless families hostels so I'm sure I can handle sleeping in a basic-looking hotel for a week. Furthermore, I'm not going to be sitting in the fucking hotel 24 hours a day - I'm going to be out and about and revelling in the culture and hustle bustle of a 24-hour continental capital city. It's going to be about as far removed from fucking Yeovil as you can possibly get. And for that, I am truly, truly thankful. That's because - and I make no apologies whatsoever for the following statement - Yeovil is a boring cess-hole. But I digress.

Completed the single player campaign on Modern Warfare 2 today. I'm a bit perplexed. Y'see - I was just getting in to it...and then it ended. What a goddamn joke! And what a crap final scene! Sure - I'm happy to take back my previous comments about the game, but the ending is such an anti-climax. Bah! And what's all that shit with the museum thing at the end?! Bizarre. I'm going to take it to Gamestation this week and swap it for Alan Wake or Lost Planet 2. Hopefully they'll give me a decent trade-in amount for it as they've bumped the price of a new copy back up to £44.99...aaaand here I am talking about swapping games again. Old habits die hard, evidently.

I've got more stuff to write about, but I'm going to try and stretch it across the week. Because it gives me something to do when I'm at work, to be honest. Bye bye, me hearties.

Thursday, 17 June 2010

Clutter Snipe

I've been a bit of a miserable cunt recently and I've let a few things get out of hand, so what I propose to do from now on is try to keep myself busy to take my mind off all the less appealing events that have been going on recently. So, the first things I intend to do are finally have a good auld fucking tidy up. You may remember how I waxed about being evicted from my house-share a few weeks ago via text message. Well, since then, I haven't actually unpacked any of my belongings or clothes - I've just thrown them into a big cupboard in my room and left it all in a big heap, leaving me rummaging around for items of clothing whenever I need them. Not an ideal situation by any means, so I need to sort the detritus out and put it in some kind of order.

On the subject of my recent eviction, once I had got back to my previous (or is that current?) dwelling, I noticed that I was slightly lighter on clothing than I thought I should have been. After a quick call to one of my previous housemates, I discovered that I'd left a load of clothes in some draws in my old bedroom. Shortly after this call, the cowardly bastard of a landlord texted me to tell me he was leaving my clothes in a bin bag outside the back door on the following Sunday. Fucking charming behaviour for a middle aged, apparently professional adult, eh? What a cock (sucker). Hope him and his live-in closet boyfriend go on to be very happy in their own little version of Narnia.

I also need to tackle the obscenely scruffy article that is my car. Since I used it to move all my shizzle from the house of a thousand pillow-screams, It's become something of a shit-tip. Food wrappers, empty bottles, old shoe boxes (?) - it is just full of crap. It needs a damn good internal clear out and a good scrub on the outside too. It shall be returned to it's former glory and regain the crown of best mid-range family saloon driven by a family-less bloke in the South mark my words.

So what else has been happening? Well, it looks as though my time as a glorified security guard/boredom researcher is coming to an end - and thank fuck. I can honestly say that the last 6 - 7 months (of my employ, naturally) have been pretty damned dire. Overall though, said months have been pretty interesting and, let's say, 'character building.' Sometimes, random sequences of events pepper your life and they can leave you head-fucked and completely at a loss as to who you are, where you're going or where you've even been. My sequence of events, I'm sure, have been going on for a few years now, but I just need to re-address how I'm looking at things and move on. So that's what I'm doing. If not physically, certainly in an emotional sense. And the first thing I'm going to do is sort my clutter out.

Monday, 14 June 2010


Hello there. Been an odd couple of weeks for me, and I've been all over the place so not really had the time or the inclination to post any of my usual brand of shite on here. I'm back at work for the next two weeks though, so I should be spilling my mind onto the tinterwebs with alarming regularity over the next couple of (well, 14) days. So what's been occurring then?

Well, last week I ventured out of the south and headed back up to the Great Industrial North (tm) for a week of head-clearing, reflection and relaxation. Inevitably though, it just ended up being a bit of piss-up that lasted for 5 days. I had every intention of going up there to just chill out and get some good running and cycling done, but due to recent events my mood was slightly awry and this was perceived by most of my friends and family (Gawd bless 'em all) as "let's get him pissed to cheer him up." It kind of worked for the most part, and I had an enjoyable time (more later), but I still just couldn't help but go over the events in my personal life over and over and nausea. Which was shite.

However, apart from get monumentally bollocksed, I did partake in some decent activities. I went up to Jodrell Bank space telescope in Cheshire with my cousin after enquiring with a former housemate (who now works there) as to whether there was a visitor's centre. He enthusiastically informed me that there was a 'small' one there. So me and cousin ventured out to the place...only to discover that the 'small' visitor's centre (that also charged a £2 entry fee), was little more than a room with a few pictures and an extortionately expensive cafe. Unimpressive is the least offensive word that I can use to describe said vistor's centre. The telescope itself, however, is a real feat of engineering - the thing is fucking hur-uge, and it can rotate on a massive track-type job. It did actually move at one point, and it makes you think why it was moving and what the bods in charge were looking at/for. As a side note, I remember that when my former housemate (who was studying for a PhD in Astrophysics at the time) hooked up his bedroom PC to Jodrell Bank's through the internet, all that came up on the screen were rows upon rows of numbers etc. Not what I had in mind when I thought about telescopes...although it is a radio telescope so assuming that there'd be big pictures of nebulae and shit on the guy's computer screen does seem a little on the naive side when I actually think about it!

Also at Jodrell, there were these things called 'the whispering dishes,' which are these two big facing each other and are spaced about 200 yards apart. If you stand in front of one and whisper into it, the person standing in front of the other one can hear your voice as clear as a bell. Fuck knows how it all works, but I would hazard a guess that it's got something to do with acoustics or something. Still, a brilliant little curiosity and unlike the crappy visitor's centre, they were free to marvel at.

After Jodrell Bank had offered up all (well, both of) it's wonders, I took a trip to Stockport to see a mate who I've not seen for about 2 years (which, as you've probably predicted, turned into a visit to the pub). This event was tinged with regret though, as it saw me break my year-long, self-imposed ban on the consumption of the donner kebab. Look - It was late, I was pissed and I hadn't eaten all day. I was attracted to the bright lights of the kebab outlet like a moth to a flame...and the rest is history. I have to say that after I'd consumed it, I felt disturbingly horrible. Greasy and disgusting, in fact. I toyed with the idea of trying to wretch the fucker up into some bushes, but there were a load of boy racers watching me from their hideously coloured and 'tuned' Vauxhall Corsas in a supermarket car park across the road.

The week also saw me take a train ride to Southport, which is a little seaside town just down the coast from Blackpool. It's quite a decent place, but you can tell that it's a shadow of it's former self (thanks Resident Evil for that quote - I use it more often than I should). There is a fun fair like the Pleasure Beach at Blackpool, but it's been closed for a while and there are umpteen closed down food stalls and arcades along the seafront. It's quite sad, really, as you can see that the whole place is slowly dying off - maybe it's down to the recession, or maybe just down to the fact that Blackpool is just up the road (you can see the tower and the Bog One roller coaster from the beach at Southport), but it's still quite eerie when you walk past the closed rides and empty pier. On the plus side, we did stop for a pint at the world's smallest pub (they've even got a plaque on the wall that was issued by the Guinness records people) and also got some proper fish and chips that was devoured with gusto on the sea front.

On Thursday, I finally got to speak to my sister and see her baby girl (my niece, obviously). She's a big old unit considering she's only 8-ish months old and I was scared shitless of dropping her, so declined the offer of carrying her. Added to this, she was probably wondering who the fuck I was and started to flap every time I got near her, but I eventually got the chance to have her sit on my which point she shat her nappy. Always nice. But yeah, seeing a real-life baby was cool. Which reminds me that my brother's baby is due in August, too. Mental. Gonna be an uncle for the second time in the space of a year!

So, it was fairly good week, and it was good to see so many people again who I've not seen for ages...and it only took me 4 hours to get back up there in the Proton (which is still going strong, for those who are interested). If only there hadn't been so much negative horse-shit going round in my head. Ah well. Maybe the shrink I'm off to see can suck it all out of my swede. If that doesn't work, I'm going to employ Mike Tyson to beat it out. Hmmm...!

Sunday, 11 April 2010

Big Brother is...

Facebook. It's a modern phenomenon. Pretty much every fucker I know is on it, and in my opinion it's a society-defining application. Back in the olden days, before Facebook, if you lost touch with someone or lost their mobile number or something (in my case usually by losing/breaking my phone whilst out pissed), that was it. No more contact until you randomly bump into them 6 years after you last saw them. This happened to me loads of times before I entered the world of Facebook and to be honest, these situations are generally quite awkward. Awkward becase you find yourself face to face with someone you used to know but haven't seen for fucking ages. Any common ground you had has long since been swallowed up by the canyon of time and so you just end up asking the same fucking moronic, 'polite' questions: how've you been; where are you working now; what've you been up to...BUT YOU DON'T FUCKING CARE. I'm just being honest, people.

Like I said, when I was living in Manchester this kind of thing used to happen all the time, until it got the the point where if I saw someone in the street who I used to sort-of know, I'd make a point of avoiding them. Where is this bullshit going, you may ask. Well, with Facebook, you can avoid all that awkwardness and crap. If someone you used to know pops up and requests to add you as a 'friend,' then it's fine. Exchange a brief message, click 'accept,' and all is right with the world. There's no making excuses to get the hell away from them, and no cringeworthy "can I have your number...we'll meet up" moment. Because you know, you fucking know that after you walk away from that encounter, you'll never, ever ring that cunt you just spoke to. And that's life. So yeah, Facebook has it's good points - one of which I've just illustrated up there in the paragraph you've just read with your eyes.

It's not all rosy in the garden of Facebook though. Oh no. And this is what I really want to get off my chest in this post. There are several things that I find vexing when it comes to everyone's favourite social networking site. And here they are:

Status Updates

Some people post short, enigmatic statuses (stati?) about something. They are usually of the sad/fed up variety. They don't give much away, just that they are sad or melancholy for some unknown reason. Why? Because they want fucking ATTENTION. Next time you see someone with 'is annoyed,' or 'is pissed off,' have a look at the comments box. It's the same shit, every fucking time: "what's wrong, hun?" Firstly - anyone who uses the term 'hun' need wiping off the face of the Earth like a bug splatter off a windscreen. I despise that term, as many people who know me will attest. What the fuck does it even mean? Honey? It does my nut in. So, to surmise - sad status updates simply written to invoke an enquiry of the problem. Gets up my nose. Like a Gillette Fusion (see previous post).

The next update variety that I despise is the 'I'm having a great time' update. If you're having such a fucking good time, WHY THE FUCKING SHIT ARE YOU ON FACEBOOK?! Example: " in the pub having a pint and a good laugh with my mates." No you're not. You're sat on your jack browsing Facebook because either a) you've got no actual mates; b) because the mates you're with are either outside smoking and you're sat on your own inside waiting for them to come back, or they're in the bogs; or c) your mates are sat at the same table as you, but they're not including you in the conversation because they all think you're a bit of a twat. The reason I know these FACTS? Because I've done it. Many a time! These kinds of updates can be used in any kind of situation, be it at a party, at a concert or anywhere that's meant to be a 'fun' place. Don't do it, people.

Another kind of update that irritates me is the 'too much info' update. For instance: "...went to the shop and bought some peas for my tea, then went for a shit and the shit was green." Does anyone actually give a flying fuck? Negative. So sort it out.

OK, so people can put what they want as status updates, and that's the point of Facebook and freedom of expression, but when people don't even try to write something interesting it bugs me. Who cares about the inanity of somebody else's existence? Not me, for one.

At the risk of sounding like either a cuntish hypocrite or a narcissistic wank stain, I at least try to make my updates humorous or relevant. But even that back fires on me almost daily. People are constantly asking me why I'm so miserable or pissed off/angry all the time, but they are missing the point totally. I could write complete arse, and for the general populous this is fine, but I enjoy in-jokes and slagging things off. I enjoy finding the faults in everyday life and pointing them out - and the best way of delivering these thoughts to the masses is through Facebook. I'm kind of descending into a diatribe here, I know, but the point is that...well there is no point. To fucking anything, really. Just speaking my mind. So arse off if you don't fucking like it.


One thing about Facebook that my cousin recently pointed out (at great length, I must add), is that Facebook is a kind of 'encouraged voyeurism.' And he's got a point. Obviously, it's up to you to decide how much personal information you make available, but the vast majority of people will share their address, telephone number (indeed, my Palm Pre automatically imports people's phone numbers from their Facebook profile!), relationship status...every minute detail about their lives. Add to this the photos, the videos, the interests, the political leanings...and you can pretty much choose any one of your 'friends' and make a fairly accurate profile of the kind of person they are. It's quite scary when you look at in that way. Obviously, you can only look at the pages of people you already 'know,' but this is besides the point - and the single reason that as of today, all of my personal information has been deleted. I don't want people knowing where I work, live or how many times a day I have a danger wank in my boss's office. But it's 3, just incase you're curious.


I don't know how many other people this actually applies to, but I'll be the first to admit that I have gone through various stages of Facebook addiction. You know you're an addict when you wake up in the morning and the first thing you do it check to see if anyone's commented on your status. I'm speaking from experience here, and yes, I know it's sad. Now, I have various actual friends who are scattered around the globe in various hostile environments and their only real link to home is through Facebook, so this particular niggle isn't aimed at them. But there are people whose lives revolve around Facebook and what other people are doing. The number of times I've heard people talking about what somebody else wrote on Facebook, or people who've been caught cheating on their partner via Facebook, or even people who've had arguments on Facebook that have escalated to actual punch-ups, are many. And it all comes down to an unhealthy obsession with the site. It's not right to always know what other people are doing - whether they offer up the information willingly is irrelevant. Having to be constantly looking at what others are doing is akin to being jacked into the fucking Matrix, and I'm just as guilty as anyone else. But no more.


Friends. Friends. I have about 203 'friends' on Facebook. I speak to about 20 of them regularly on the site, and even fewer of them in reality, on a day to day basis. Some people have thousands of 'friends.' These are the people who actually have no real friends, the people who are so fucking insecure and pathetic that they feel the need to garner thousands of virtual sycophantic followers just to feel needed. And what's with people who request your 'friendship' that you've never even met?! What's that all about? I got a request the other day from somebody who'd seen a question I asked on a Facebook forum, liked my question and wanted to be my friend. A little bit of investigating revealed that they lived in Peru and were a devout Catholic. Not got anything against 60-year-old, sexually ambiguous Peruvian Catholics, but seriously - how far is that 'friendship' going to go? As a result, I rejected it.

Just to clarify, this post isn't a declaration of war on all things Facebook. I use it almost daily and I do appreciate the benefits of such a global's just that some aspects and users take things to the extreme. And if it came to light that Facebook was actually a New World Order-backed scheme for keeping tabs on the world's population, it wouldn't surprise me in the slightest.

Thursday, 8 April 2010

Some Friendly Advice

The best thing to do with advice, reckoned Oscar Wilde, is to pass it on. So without further ado:

Fucking nose hair. Ghastly stuff, and I seem to have a talent for growing the shit. I was having a shave today when I caught sight of my nostrils and could've easily mistaken them for a photograph of Murkwood. Without further ado, I embarked upon a mission to fell said nostril-forest as if I was the smog-based baddie from The Legend of Fern Gully. I tried first to do the deed with my fingers, ripping the blighters out, but this proved quite painful; and trying to cut the bastards with scissors also proved a logistical nightmare due to the delicate dimensions of my breathing apparatus - the scissors were simply too big to fit up my schnoz. And then I had an epiphany. I had been using a Gillette Fusion razor to shave my face, and this particular shaving utensil has a nifty little blade running across the top of the razor head that is meant to be used for trimming sideburns, goatees etc. I seized said razor and shoved it into my left nostril, decimating acres of nasal woodland. So far, so good. One nostril: clear. It was as I approached the other aperture that my concentration waned and I ended up smashing the blade up against the septum and cutting a deep gash into it. Cue much bloodshed, stinging pain and lots of swearing. I endeavoured to clear the hairs within said nostril after stemming the flow of claret, but I have learnt a valuable lesson: do not try to trim your nose hair with a Gillette Fusion. Just buy a proper fucking nasal trimmer. Or simply put up with giant redwoods growing out of your conk. And there's the advice. Do with it what you will.

Prior to my Saw-esque encounter with the razor blade, today saw me venture back to see the physio regarding my knackered knee. After walking up and down and performing several ridiculous variations of the 'lunge,' (possibly) simply for her own amusement, she (the physio) came to the conclusion that the reason for my continued knee pain (and now foot pain, to boot*) is that I have one leg shorter than the other! Furthermore, my right kneecap is 'twisted.' As a result, I now have to walk around with a heel-raising insole in my left shoe and my right knee has been taped up to buggery in an effort to 'reset' it's positioning. I feel like Forrest Gump prior to the leg-brace escape scene. I just hope I don't have to have my right leg lopped off and replaced with a MOD-issue steam powered cast-iron replacement. From 1875. It is fucking annoying, not being able to run free, but I'm still nailing the cross-trainer and the weights so keeping on top of my fitness.

I'm off work next week though, and that means no gym access, so in an effort to keep my fitness revolution going I'm going to hit the cycling, and hit it hard. I've been looking into cycling routes around Dorset and fully intend to get my ass up and out onto them. I may be a born and bred city-dweller, but I love cycling and where better to do it than the great British countryside? There must be hundreds of little trails peppering my little part of this green land, and I fully intend to explore a few of them. Hopefully the weather will hold out, which isn't a lot to ask seeing as we've now officially entered British Summer Time.

Should also have some family members coming down to visit from the North in May, and several of them have expressed an interest in hiring bikes and going for rides, so what better reason to undertake my aforementioned mission? Two birds, one humongous stone, wouldst thou agree?!

This is a slightly random and disjointed conclusion to the post, but I've just sat through the Brendan Fraser remake of Journey to the Centre of the Earth. Whilst it's a fairly entertaining family romp, I feel I must make an observation: the special effects are absolutely fucking terrible. In places, it's hard to believe this film was actually allowed into cinemas in this state! In one scene, the hapless trio that make up the main cast are involved in a fairly standard runaway mine cart scenario...but in places, the sequence resembles that subterranean level from Donkey Kong Country on the SNES. Truly pathetic CG, I kid you not. Watch it yourself and you'll see what I mean. Oh, and watch out for the equally bad piranha bit. Laughable stuff, really.

And there I shall bring this particular diatribe to a close.

* pun totally and hysterically intended.