Sunday, 5 June 2011

Dog Teeth

Alfred lives alone. On Saturday mornings, to relieve his boredom, Alfred would go to the park with his binoculars. His binoculars were powerful. They needed to be. His hobby was going to the park to look at dogs. Looking at the dogs through his binoculars, he would count how many teeth each dog had. In Alfred’s coat pocket he kept a notepad and pencil. Alfred would make a note of the type of dog he saw, and if he didn’t know the breed, he’d draw what the dog looked like. Next to the picture or descriptor, he’d write down how many teeth he had seen on the dog.

In the evening, Alfred would fry some processed ham, boil an egg, and sit down to watch some television he had recorded during the week. The video player was temperamental, but he liked the fuzzy soft focus it gave to Phillip Schofield’s face. After his TV dinner, Alfred would then go upstairs to his bedroom and begin making all the teeth he had seen in the park. Alfred would use papier-mâché and chicken wire for this. Alfred tried to make each tooth 120 times the size it would normally be. These teeth, once dry, would then be stored in the attic, along with all his other teeth.

Wednesday, 22 September 2010

Childhood Memories: Now Available in Superdrug, £2.99

Merchandise is a profitable business. The amount of money you can make selling duvet covers with Michael Ball’s face on it, is bewildering. My Nan mixes and matches her pillow and duvet sets so she can be joined in bed with the faces and torso’s of her beloved Titchmarsh, O’Donnel and Ball. I’m going through a neutral colours phase at the moment, but I’m guessing it’s natural progression from when we once surrounded ourselves with Transformers and Teddy Ruxpin.

However the band JLS, have taken merchandise to a whole new level in my eyes. Their management have decided that fans are no longer happy with their face on a calculator, pencil case, or a sticker album. No, sticker albums for kids are outdated; they’ve decided they want their face on contraceptives. In effect, JLS are telling kids just stick it anywhere- just don’t swap them afterwards, even for a shiny. Still, At least they have standards, I remember Noel Edmunds Swap shop. He’d swap anything.

Part of me wonders if when opening the condom, a tune plays like when you open a birthday card, or if they’re saving that trick for when they release a new range of umbrella’s next month. All this makes me look back on my childhood quite gladly. Glad that the Chuckle Brothers were never afforded the opportunity of fronting a safe-sex campaign to distract me from my Italia 90 sticker books and pogs.

Monday, 20 September 2010

London: Part one

Time seems to go very quickly in London. It makes me worry that I’ll start to look even older than my face suggests already. I estimate that one year from now, my forehead will have more lines than a Hogarth etching; and who knows by that point to sooth my impending depression, I may have even started drinking Gin with my Coco-Pops, to make life a little more bearable.

I opted to get the coach to London, I was seduced by the cheap ticket. Five minutes into the journey, the lady in front decided to recline her seat back, and as a result, it soon felt that I was performing dentistry. Her molar’s were in a poor state of repair, which I put down to box of Jaffa Cakes she decided not to share.

People’s lack of courtesy on Public Transport is galling sometimes. I’m not bitter that the woman kept the Jaffa Cakes to herself; it was the fact that I had to see her eat them upside down, and listen to an orchestra of chewing and chomping. I’ve had quieter and cleaner colonic irrigations than the horror show she performed getting through that box of Jaffa Cakes. I feel that if it’s not my eyes being scarred by the sight of atrocities, it’s my ears getting fingered by strangers with their rubbish singing. Thirty years ago, I might be wrong, it would be considered normal practice to walk around the streets with a jar of Chloroform. It was handy to put to sleep anyone that might be considered a nuisance. Nowadays using Chloroform is frowned upon, so I have to listen to people singing like Celine Dion, but Celine Dion being chased through the woods by an angry bear.

Tuesday, 3 August 2010

Life after Woolworths?

I had a minor win on the lottery at the weekend, and I was at a loss as to how to invest my winnings- a luxury pork pie, or a giant Toblerone? I decided that it had been too long since I attempted the noble art of trying to eat a chocolate bar the size of my leg, so I opted for the Toblerone. Only when walking down the high street did I realise that there was no such outlet for giant chocolate bars anymore. Woolworths had died, and no-one had opted to take over the mantle to supply the nation with oversized confectionary. Or had they? I was advised by a friend to try the City Market, and that I did. I’ve always found that a visit to the market is always like walking into a portal that takes you back twenty years. I’d say Steve Jobs has a lot of work to do with this demographic- Touchscreen tills are an evil science in this environment, and the sight of an etch-a-sketch has been known to cause epilepsy amongst its users.

That was never the case in Woolworths. It blended haberdashery with garden strimmers seamlessly, while obliging a receipt with each purchase. I think the trouble with Wollies and its untimely demise, was the size of its stores. Vagabonds could hide just about anywhere in its stores, and unless the security guards were hide and seek experts (which often they weren’t), you’re going to be able to steal ping-pong tables left, right and centre. Further chaos staff had to contend with would be controlling the hoards of tramps pissing over flumps in the pick and mix; all this while trying to help pensioners find Celene Dion’s Greatest Hits on cassette in the bargain bin.

Argos seems to struck the balance right. Having nothing for people to touch, and then laminating the catalogues in case someone does decide to eject piss over them. However, sadly for me, Argos don’t sell Toblerone, and nor did the market.

Tuesday, 27 July 2010

Killing is difficult.

I’ve thought about it for a while, and I’m also pretty certain that my potential victim doesn’t have the faintest idea what’s coming. I’ve had many sleepless nights thinking through my procedure for quick, clean, finish.

It’s been eight months since my once trusted printer stopped working, and I just haven’t had the heart to get rid of it. For while the power light still flickers, it makes me feel like I’m performing euthanasia, confining my ailing printer to the landfill. I have been patient with my printer, despite the fact it often served as much purpose as my neighbours dog, Dudley. Dudley was a morbidly obese spaniel, which just sat in the corner not doing anything for months; then when you tried to get his bowels moving, what often came out was the wrong colour.

While Dudley did have a lovely life, eating steak and chocolate fingers. My printer’s existence has been a life of middle-class domestic violence, with me threatening to throw domestic appliances at it, or leaving it to suffocate it in layers upon layers of dust. I feel that after this psychological torture, it deserves a better send off than being tossed into a skip. I have even prayed for a power surge to put it out of its misery, but I just can’t see past it being buried under the patio, as another one of those sordid mistakes.

Tuesday, 20 July 2010

Am I singing in the right key?

Bills, Bills, Bills… Quoting Destiny’s Child doesn’t happen every day for me, so this is a special occasion indeed. You may even want to mark it in your diary, and see if your boss will let you have the corresponding date off next year to commemorate the occasion. Going back to the point however, and I am at a loss as to what to do with all these bills I get. How long should I keep them for? Should I file them? If I started filing all my statements, there wouldn’t be any room for the taxidermy kit I recently bought at a car boot sale. It’s no wonder these huge stationary stores are popping up all over the place, we seem to be a nation that loves to hoard stuff. Admittedly, I can’t stop hoarding. Since the purchase of my taxidermy kit, my bedroom now looks like a reconstruction of The Animals of Farthing Wood: stuffed badgers, foxes, moles, and ferrets; all skilfully posed in combat, fighting a plague of rats. Now, this reconstruction wouldn’t look nearly as menacing if there were statements from The Bank of Santander stored alongside it. I need a solution.

While shredding my bills might seem logical to some, to me it seems a bit of a mental way to spend a Sunday afternoon. I see it as no different to breaking up stale digestive biscuits so no-one could tell if they were McVities or Asda’s Value range, in fear of being found out by the Cookie Monster. I could of course set fire to my old bills, but how sensible is that? I live on the fifth floor of a small flat, with a woman who only eats buttery alternatives. I’m guessing that should the fire get out of hand, saving the buttery woman from her demise might be tricky, especially if her skin is as greasy as the freshly basted Christmas turkey that I dream about… Where are my matches?

Friday, 16 July 2010

Not so Utterly Butterly

I’ve recently moved flats, and I’ve yet to see my new housemate. On the first night of them moving in, I tried to make as much noise as possible making my Spaghetti Bolognaise, to get their attention. Well, I cluttered a few pans. I think pretending that I was sacrificing the cow, and then impersonating the cow as it went through the mincer, might have overdone it a touch, and may well blemish any potential friendship forever. However, my conservative efforts were futile, even chewing loudly outside their door didn’t do anything. This person is clearly either deaf, scared, or anti-social.

Finishing my meal, I went to the fridge to get a jug of custard, and what I saw still bothers me today, nine days later. This person seems to survive on a diet of butter alternatives? The only two items on their shelf was a tub of ‘I can’t believe it’s not butter’ and Morrisons own buttery version, ‘Taste like butter’. Why would you own two tubs of alternative butter? Is it a collection? If it is, it’s the smallest type of collection you can have. But, seeing these two tubs of butter alternative made me nervous. Nervous about the safety of my butter, Lurpak.

For the next two days, I had started to take notice about how much butter was in my tub, and I feel there is definitely been some malpractice taking place in the fridge. I searched their cupboards, reckless I know, but the Lt. Columbo in me just needed to find out what happened to my daily source of monounsaturated fatty acids. What I saw next was equally puzzling, dozens of Ice trays, shaped with wine bottles. Frozen butter? My frozen butter? The case continues…