Monthly Archives: May 2002

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It seems that the last US census produced a load of Scotts! Without any warning America has been invaded with Scotsmen, who then killed the same number of yanks – that can be the only explanation for why so many suddenly appeared. To celebrate this massive invasion, which seemingly went unnoticed by the US DoD, a new TV channel is being launched called [cringe] “Tartan TV”. Now all these “Genuine Scotts(TM)” can enjoy real “Scotch” culture by watching 24hr porridge-eating, caber-tossing and kilt-wearing competitions.

I wonder if they will follow the example of the billions of “Genuine Irish” and open theme pubs:


“Hi! My name’s Morag and I’ll be your waitress for this visit to McDougalls Genuine Scotch Pub. If there’s anything you want then please DINNAE be afraid to ask.
Can I interest you in any of our Genuine Scotch(TM) starters ? We have Scotch Oatmeal (with real Scotch Maple syrup and bluberries and a bonnie heather garnish)…etc ad nauseam….

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OK call me a hippy if you like, but this song was on an album of kids songs my dad gave me when I was very, very young…it was the 70s, but even so it is spot on – especially today. Mail me if you can’t find a copy in the shops 🙂

by Tom Paxton

a thought was born in the mind of a man
and it didn’t please you and it didn’t please me
so we all got together and we made our plan
to drown that thought in the deep blue sea

so we wrapped it up, in a chain we bought
cos it didn’t please you, it didn’t please me
to the bottom of the ocean we threw that thought
and the chain went down but the thought stayed free

we locked that thought in the dungeon cell
we slammed the door, threw away the key
and how it happenned no-one can tell
for the door stayed locked but the thought went free

so the councillors met and laws were passed
the laws were nailed on every tree
all the sheriffs were summoned, and troops were massed
all the tanks turned out but the thought went free

then the councillors fears were realised
and they were frightened as they could be
for they only had to look in peoples eyes
for the terrible news that the thought was free

yes the thought was free and it spread like fire
though it didn’t please you, and it didn’t please me
it was banished from the land by the king’s desire
and the boat pulled out but the thought stayed free

now worst of all in this terrible tale
though we tried to hurl it from our shores
not only did this troublesome though prevail
but worst of all one thought bred more

(my transcription, so my fault if there are mistakes. I love Tom).

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If you’re planning a visit to England and are keen to experience English culture then now would be a perfect time! Look at all of the oh-so-England things you can experience at this special time of year:

  • Weeks and weeks of football everywhere you look, every tv programme, every commercial, every pub, every newspaper. Football, football, football, football, football, football, football.
  • British summer! Yes that uncomfortably muggy moist feeling, coupled with a grey-tainted appearance of the sun from behind a cloud yielding a truly gloomy feeling that overcomes your entire being.
  • Ladettes on every TV channel, desperately trying to demonstrate how into ‘the footy’ they are. As a result of these morons there is even more football football football on the footballing telly and every footballing other footballing place you footballing turn.
  • Baddiel and Skinner is on! Yes, two blokes, one sofa, no script, just loads more fucking football.
  • Football, football, football, football, football, football, football, football,football, football, football, football, football, football, football, football, football, football
  • The Traditional English Boozer! Recently refitted of course and without any character and with outrageously expensive drinks and with a massive 10ft screen showing non-stop football, football, football over and over again with no stopping, and where there’s no football then the highlights and the results and football, football, football bloody football…that permanent crowd sound sapping every bit of creativity and inspiration from every cell in your body…the tedious monotonic monologues from the commentators…the stillness in an otherwise lively place as hundreds of identical-looking short-haired blokes and their brainless ovine girlfriends all stand motionless in their overpriced synthetic football tops watching 22 blokes kicking a piece of leather about on a strip of grass. When it’s not eerily quiet, it’s so loud your eardrums ache as everyone leaps into the air screaming for joy, because one of the 22 blokes has managed to convey the piece of leather into a specific part of the grass strip.
  • Fighting! What English saturday night would be complete without a fight that ends in hospitalisation! Usually the fights are related to drinking too much (whilst watching the football, football, football). For extra special violence then try pubs near football grounds! Just go in there wearing the wrong overpriced synthetic football strip and they’ll happily adorn you with a blood-shirt.
  • The JUBILEE! What joy as everyone in Britain celebrates the outsanding achievement the queen has made by being a queen for a while! There’ll be awkward parties in the streets, bored children, uninterested millions, hours and hours of TV voxpop interviews (inbetween the endless hours of football football football) with insane arseholes who like to sleep outside someone else’s house.
  • More football! So much football that you can’t believe that its all real.
  • Award winning tv adverts featuring lifestyles that you will never achieve and loads more football, football football
  • News about the middle-east, the rise of fascism in europe and more importanly football, football, football

You think England have got a chance then ? Yeah I reckon they have yeah. Did you see the footy last night ? I love football, I really fucking love it. I could watch it all day every day for the rest of my life which is really fortunate because I won’t have a choice…

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What a choice! Five alternative ways to get really angry and swear at your telly. At least The Big Breakfast used to be able to induce the odd laugh…

BT have announced large profits, two days after I received a bill for 80 quid, 47 of which came under the non-specific heading of “service charges” – what a co-incidence!

George Bush has announced that he knew of Al-Qaeda’s plans to hijack planes before september the 11th. Obviously he didn’t think it necessary to tell anyone about this beforehand because it was such an insignificant piece of info.
It becomes slightly more significant when you read this article.

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Broadcasting house had an interesting discussion about employment and retirement. It would seem that people my age who are not millionaires will not be able to retire.

So obviously the solution is to enjoy your work more! sounds obvious doesn’t it ? Why didn’t we think of it before….oh sorry…my supervisor has just given me a written warning for blogging when I should be working….

Dear BH,

It’s a tough enough call just to turn-up in the morning and do your
job, without being asked to try and enjoy it – let alone introduce some
creative essence into it. How do you do that in a call center when every
time you crack a smile your supervisor interjects because she thinks you
must be slacking off.

Yes it would be nice to downshift, and change our culture so that work
becomes more enjoyable. But there is a very simple, fundamental problem
with this; We live in a capitalist world. The *only* job of a board of
directors is to increase profits. After you have ‘downsized’ and
‘streamlined’ and ‘relocated to Indonisia, sacking all of your previous
staff’ there will come a time when you run out of resources to exploit –
then what ? Well, perhaps the staff are spending too much time
‘excercising their creativity’ and not sewing trainers ?
If we are really serious about making life generally better for people in
the world before they die, I think we need to do more than have group-
hugs, footballs in the office and regular staff bowling trips.

So if we can agree that any change a single company can make to make
it’s employee’s lives richer is only avoiding the real problem, then there
is something that would help in the short term:

Working from home.
Someone mentioned it, but it was passed over.
What would happen in London if a third of the employees worked half of
their weeks at home ?
* The transport problems would be solved.
* Pollution would decrease.
* People don’t have the stress of getting to and from work and so would
work more effectively.
* People could have ‘true’ flexitime – being able to spend their days as
they wish – as long as the work gets done who cares ?
* People would be more effective and more relaxed when *at* work.
The technology to do this exists and is affordable. Even more affordable
if the government gave incentives for companies to allow their staff to
work at home.

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Well the may day celebrations turned ugly in the end. The pictures of police smashing unarmed people over the heads with riot sheilds will doubtless not be shown again.

On the way home from work, three fully-stuffed riot vans and 3 unmarked cars shot up the A2 – what is the point of an unmarked car when they’re putting a blue flashing light on the top and sounding a siren so loud that milk bottles were smashing as they went past ?

A few years ago I would have said that the ‘few bad apples that spoiled an otherwise peaceful day’ were bad. Now I think “good!”. They’ve got the fact that people feel strongly about anti-capitalism, on the news. Five years ago you never heard the word “capitalism” anywhere…even if you went to left wing rallies. It was a “bad word”, much like “cunt”. Now, thanks to the thoughtless, goodfornothing violent, hardcore anarchists its on the news every night. GOOD. People need to know that there are some who disagree with what we are taught is the norm.
Capitalism is optional providing you are given the full list of options. The times that pro-capitalists have said to me, after a bitter pub-argument, “so what do you propose instead”. This implies that they are only supporting capitalism because there is not better alternative! Well there is – but you don’t want to listen when people talk about it. Even if there wasn’t an alternative, wouldn’t you prefer to try and construct one rather than defend a system which you agree is flawed ? Perhaps you wouldn’t, but then a lot of pro-capitalists are very, very stupid.

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It’s may day and the sun’s out. The may-day celebrations are already making news with talk of hardcore anarchists intent on violence and destruction.
Don’t believe the hype. The URL above is worth a look – it’s got a pretty good history of what MayDay means and addresses a lot of the ill-informed criticism by the Police, the press and the MPs.

….and I’m not going…have fun anyway.