Archive for October 2011

Deth on the Plains

October 29, 2011

For once Long Hair was in a warm climate. He had taken a wrong turn somewhere on Route 666 and had ended up in Wind River, Wyoming. The dustiness of the trail was choking his car’s radio transmission for the Metal Chainsaw Show. Gulping down on a bottle of Jameson, he fiddled with the tuning knob. The last three songs played were-

Garth Brooks – Achy Breaky Heart
Kenny Rogers- Coward of the County
Shania Twain- Man, I feel like a woman

From outside he heard the noise of drums. He slammed on the brakes sending smoke signals from his exhaust into the air. The Arapaho Indians on the ridge interpreted this message as “do you want a square-go?” This fierce warrior tribe needed no second invitation. They hollered down from the hills, all brave-like.
Until they saw the long-haired occupant thirstily drinking Jameson’s in his smouldering vehicle. Unceremoniously, they brought their thundering horses to a halt in a “You’ve been Framed” fall over sketch routine.

A mini-conclave concluded that this was a deathly descendant of “Long Hair” Custer out to avenge the soul of his ancestor. Chief Southpaw hoped to make peace terms with Long Hair. He went to meet him armed only with his peace pipe. Long Hair inhaled deeply from this offering.

“What brings Long Hair out to Wind River?” asked Chief Southpaw.

“I’ve a reservation -” Long Hair’s speech was shortened by a belch. The Arapaho chief gulped at the word reservation. Long Hair drained a Jameson’s chaser and continued. “For the new Megadeth album and I’m headed to their home town of Los Angeles to pick up a pre-ordered copy.”

“Did you say Megadeth? We’ve got their complete collection here. You know Crazy Horse wasn’t too fond of our peoples having our photos taken but he didn’t say anything about having a CD player. Country and western music is for the cowboys. Out here, we rock.”

The Arapaho threw a heavy metal party in honour of their distinguished guest. The thumping beat was making the Bighorn Mountains shake, just like they did a long, long time ago.

“World war 4 will be fought with sticks and stones”

October 27, 2011

While peering out the rear window I noticed that a minor mishap had befallen my neighbour with his automobile. As it was a cold morning he decided to warm up his car and started the engine. Running into his house to fetch a coat when he returned he noticed the central locks had come down; he was locked out. Unfortunately, he told me before that he did not have a spare key. Luckily, he had “breakdown” cover and presumably that was who he was phoning. I watched Paul go inside and settle himself down near the window in his lounge.

Paul was a nice young man finding his way in the world. He would know better next time to buy a car that had two keys as part of the deal and one that doesn’t have a faulty locking system. The worst thing wrong with his car, for me, was that it was green. This “go green” nonsense has never washed with me. An hour passed before the breakdown engineer arrived. Paul went out to meet him. I spied through the blinds.

A few minutes chit-chat between the rescuer and the stranded one ensued. The engineer went back to his vehicle. I heightened in my room eager to know what modern instrument would be used to help my distressed neighbour. What sort of implement could pry the lock? Would it be an unusually structured piece of metal or perhaps, some kind of magnetic device?

The engineer reappeared with a coat hanger. He bended the hook to 180°
and picked the lock like a common car thief.

For want of a nail

October 26, 2011

It’s the little things in life that sometimes are the most important. This is probably because without having control of the smaller, seemingly minor, aspects of your day to day existence problems can grow out of all proportion. Police chiefs insist that by stopping less serious crime the criminally-minded won’t progress into the major leagues. I contacted the police to ask for a search party and was brushed-off politely. Private detectives also weren’t willing to investigate. Last week I lost my favourite set of nail clippers and no one would help to find them.

What’s wrong with that, you say? Nail clippers are ten a finger penny. You can buy them in any store in town. That might be so; in my experience nail clippers are all unique individuals with their own DNA. They all exhibit different characteristics in the same way that all guitar picks have varying temperaments. My lost nail clipper had just the right mix of sharpness and bluntness in its jaws to shape a nail perfectly. Its loss was hard to take.


My house has a whole armada of nail clippers and every one of them is useless. The sharp-shooting cutty shark clipper is more suited to clipping fingers than nails. Then there’s the old rusty Uri Geller clipper that bends the nail without cutting it. The worst of them is Buzz saw clipper. This defiler has steam pouring out of it as it slices the nails leaving them ragged. So you see I had to find the lost clipper.

With no sign or sight of the lost implement my nails were now growing out of hand; I had claws to make Wolverine jealous. Then my mind changed tack. Maybe long nails aren’t so bad. With tentacles like these-

● I can strip wallpaper without a scraper
● eat my food without using a knife and fork
● have no need of a shredder
● carve ice-cubes into ice figures

The advantages were far outweighing the disadvantages until the nails started to curl. The circular coils were digging into my wrists. There was no other thing for it than to bite my nails, though they were a foot long. I chewed and gnawed omnivorously tapering them down. Not since primary school had I tasted the sweet nectar of a nail. Suddenly I could feel an excruciating growing pain in my shoes. My larval toe nails, also unclipped, had forced themselves through the leather. There were ten new talons needing a trim.

The Bucket List #1 – Transportation

October 14, 2011

Travelling the world is something I’ve not got round to yet. One of the reasons being I’m happy in my own back yard. The Paul Newman steak/cheeseburger analogy when describing his wife comes to mind. I mean, why go to the Amazon when we’ve got more rain here?

It’s not fear of flying that holds me back. Going on an airplane doesn’t bother me. Indeed, I’m quite brave on an enclosed plane. I’ll take the window seat, I’ll walk up and down the aisle, I’ll visit the loo, I try and put other fliers at ease, I sing songs, I really have conquered the aeroplane part of aviatophobia. Helicopters are a different kettle of chicken wings.

First off I must say that I have never been on a helicopter. A few things put me off using this type of aircraft. It does seem quite transparent for a start. It’s one thing standing on the glass floor at the top of Blackpool tower quite another to peer out a chopper’s window. Vertical take-off and landing, my left foot. This is Ver-Ti-Go.

My experiences of helicopters are limited to watching them on Hollywood movies. They always seem to have dramatic scenes. The metallic pterodactyls are desperately trying to take-off while bullets are flying around the heads of actors clinging to the landing skids. Or they’re rescuing people in the most hazardous of places. I’m sure 20th Century Fox et al aren’t exaggerating these events and that they are a typical helicopter day.

Thirdly, and this is a fear that only I seem to have. The rotors don’t look safe. I worry that the alignment of the twin rotors is partially off. When we’re in the air I imagine the big horizontal rotor will come into contact with the tail rotor forcing us to spin out of control. Aeronautical experts tell me I’m talking rudder as usual.

Of the other forms of transport I quite like the train as long as I don’t get a rugby pass seat that makes me go backwards. Going the wrong way gives me locomotive sickness. Crowded buses can be entertaining, if you like that sort of thing. What I would like to do, for a refreshing change, would be to drive a horse drawn carriage. This would be tranquil.

Gently cajoling my faithful steed -no whipping- we’d clip clop down the cobbled roads tipping our hats to passing ladies while ignoring the hitch hikers; three’s a crowd. I’d do my Fonz impersonation when we stop off for a haaaay break. Then we carry on our merry way.

From hair to Ayr

October 4, 2011

Political decisions can legitimately be influenced by outside factors. The consciences of MPs can be swayed by the concerns put forth from lobby firms. However, there are cases of unscrupulous organisations offering inducements to affect the political process. I think the word I’m looking for is bribery.

As a respected, important and fast-growing website we are Scottish terrier-like biting at the ankles of the footsie: expect to see us in the top 100(000…) any day soon. Not wanting to jeopardise our rise by any taint of corruption we have avoided scandal. And then trouble walked in the door.

A pre-arranged interview with a straight-legged, mild-mannered salesman from the Comb-i-nation Company got a bit hairy. It started innocently enough as he made his pitch for an article on our esteemed domain. He gave me a USB stick with information on his range of combs.

Most combs have only two sets of teeth and his firm were about to market a comb with three different lengths of molars. An innovative intermediate set in the middle of the appliance was intended for the thinning. This middle class spoke would go with the standard close knit teeth for the hirsute and gap tooth spikes for the Kojak community. I didn’t think this was newsworthy enough so I politely said we wouldn’t be publicising his idea.

Undeterred, he pulled out a meter stick from his trouser leg revealing a prototype comb with multiple combinations of teeth for every sort of hair: from the steel wool mane to the paper mache strips to the archipelago of the great basin head barnets. This could change the world of the wrap-over as we know it.
I nit-picked “It’s just a tad too unwieldy.”
This slight criticism brought an armed response as the salesman pulled out a Swiss Army Knife from his other pocket and I expected to be attacked by the scissors tool or the can opener. Only it wasn’t a Swiss Army Knife it was a Swiss Army Comb. Stowed inside the handle of the knife were varied combinational combs.

I still wasn’t convinced of going to print as combs aren’t that exciting to read about until the lobbyist offered me an all-expenses paid weekend caravan holiday in Ayr. Everyone’s got a price and who can refuse a trip through the lovely countryside of Ayrshire to the fair seaside town of Ayr. I took the bribe and packed my bucket and spade for the beach. Unfairly, it rained for three days and the wind was of the type that ravages your hair. Still, it was still nice to have a wee break.