_Paul_And_Land_

More Nonsense From _Paul_And_Land_

Month: October, 2013

Someday

There are days when the good ship _Paul_And_Land_ lies becalmed in the Sea of Dead Souls. The Sea of Dead Souls is, as any publicly educated type will happily inform anyone willing to prick up their ears, just to the right of the Slough of Despond (or the Grimpen Mire) and a short bus ride from many places beginning with “B”: Bracknell, Basingstoke, Basildon, etc, and more etc*. Clearly, back in the day, (yes, even before Gove) some people could not spell and so Macclesfield, Warrington, Runcorn escaped the misery of beginning with “B” but they should. As should Maidstone and Orpington but that’s another story. And Stoke.

“But why this heavy and sombre tone” asks a small voice from the back of the room, accompanied, Radio Four style, by much hollering, applause and the like. Indeed, we retort, as the voice of Nicholas “bloody” Parsons cuts in, selling allegedly cheap loans to people who really need something in their lives more permanent than an allegedly cheap loan flogged to them by Nicholas “bloody” Parsons. Or Carol “sodding” Vorderman. Or some stupid puppets. Or happy families eating happy breakfasts in IKEA kitchens with smiling, happy children bouncing around the room pepped up on Sunny Delight. What bollocks.

The world is not, repeat not, not, full of happy families eating happy breakfasts in IKEA kitchens with smiling, happy children bouncing around the room pepped up on Sunny Delight. No, it’s full of people struggling by, hand to mouth, on grey days in places like Rochdale, Hartlepool, Hull, Hell and Halifax. And y’know what, they can’t afford Sunny Delight. Or 77″ colour TVs. Or Game-Boys (whatever one of those is). It’s full of people eating ALDI Value bread and My Mum’s Baked Beans and anything else that gets donated to local foodbanks. And kids in hand-me-downs knocked up in Hyderabad or Sylhet or Quezon or any place that’s equally cheap for labour.

But still these nice, honest people like Mr Parsons, like Ms Vorderman, like our politicians, like our bobbies, like the BBC, like our banking executives, like our energy bosses, want us to trust them. Implicitly. Without question. Because they know what’s right for us. Rather like the urban planners of the 50s and 60s.

And in our daily lives, others, in whom we’re supposed to trust unquestioningly, also let us down. They destroy our souls. Massively. Think on, life is not a game-show with the promise of a microwave, speed-boat or Vauxhall Corsa at the end. It’s a Sea of Dead Souls.

* Not everywhere beginning with “B” is bad. Just a few.

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Creeping

Those of us who remember Henry Kelly will also remember the somewhat “jaded by time” gameshow Going for Gold. The format was simple: chuck a few Europeans together and ask them, generally, questions about European stuff. Whoever answered the most difficult or highest number of questions would ultimately win a speedboat. Or a fitted kitchen. Or a set of golf clubs. And Henry would say “keep out of the black and in the red, you’ll get nothing at all with two in a bed”. And Tony didn’t help anyone really, did he?

“Hello”. “What do you mean I’m talking about the wrong show?”. “I’m talking about Going for Gold”. “Bullseye, nothing in this game….”. “Right, better sort this. What a bollocks up. You can’t trust anybody these days. Arse. Don’t think they missed me. Consummate professional, this will be text-book, watch me, Alistair Campbell”.

But to get back to Going for Gold, which was nowt like Bullseye, the questions were invariably on European topics. Not once was anyone asked the State capital of North Dakota or the name of the 23rd President’s pet dog. This was proper stuff about our nearest neighbours: Beaudelaire, Wencelas Square or the largest city in Norway. Question is why would anyone be in the slightest bit interested in the winning score between the Mudd Flatts Titans and the Beavis Hole Hound-Dogs in the 1967 Nebraska All College Pro-Bowl Championship (sponsored by Aunt Millies Cheesecakes “The finest cheesecake west of Terre Haute”) when the works of Brecht or Goethe exist? But in other gameshows, invariably, the winning score between the Mudd Flatts Titans and the Beavis Hole Hound-Dogs in the 1967 Nebraska All College Pro-Bowl Championship (sponsored by Aunt Millies Cheesecakes “The finest cheesecake west of Terre Haute”) has greater relevance than the works of Brecht or Goethe. Sad. Very sad.

But now we’re on a train and people are drinking coffee from paper cups. Manufactured, allegedly, by a company in Seattle. No-one is eating a Bacon Buttie or a sausage sarnie or a fried egg banjo. Some guy (get that, “guy”, not bloke or fella but “guy”) is eating doughnuts or are they bagels. What the flying bollocks is going on? Everywhere, creeping Americana. There’s even people watching American “comedy” programmes on lap-tops. It’s 7:00 in the morning!! And tonight they’ll eat fried chicken from a bucket with fries and drink poxy bloody Coca-Cola.

Years ago, we ate chips out of newspaper. We drank Dandelion and Burdock. We drank coffee from proper cups. And it had nothing to do with Seattle. We talked. And no-one was a “guy”. Except on the 5th of November. And there were no Halloween parties, Christmas was on 25th December and not when Coca-Cola said and we couldn’t have cared any less about winning score between the Mudd Flatts Titans and the Beavis Hole Hound-Dogs in the 1967 Nebraska All College Pro-Bowl Championship (sponsored by Aunt Millies Cheesecakes “The finest cheesecake west of Terre Haute”).

Have a nice day. Try reading some Goethe, some Brecht, some Beaudelaire and Oslo. Yes, Oslo.

Lager Beer

Hmm yes. Whilst meandering the highways and by-ways of _Paul_And_Land_ on the murky day several thoughts were skitting about in the head. Several involved cheese, another involved the potential effectiveness of Agent Orange as a domestic mouse repellent and yet another concerned George Osbourne and an industrial mincer. All good wholesome stuff here in the land of _Paul_And_Land_ and in the minds of it’s merry citizens.

Then, much to chagrin of this particular Citizen, a bunch of chaps, in lager beer, getting loud and fanciful. Loud because they were in lager beer of a tastefully named brand along the lines of ‘Testicle’ or ‘Killer Dog’ or ‘Shit Face’ or ‘Billy Bastard’s Psycho Cheap Lager Beer with added Vodka and Violence’. And fanciful because they were being fanciful with the ladies. Being in lager beer, possibly branded under the name ‘Testicle’ or ‘Killer Dog’ or ‘Shit Face’ or ‘Billy Bastard’s Psycho Cheap Lager Beer with added Vodka and Violence’ said chaps were of the opinion that the ladies would enjoy an evening to remember. An evening involving parts of bodies and other stuff.

Needless to say, the ladies were not in the least part interested as the imbibing of ‘Testicle’ or ‘Killer Dog’ or ‘Shit Face’ or ‘Billy Bastard’s Psycho Cheap Lager Beer with added Vodka and Violence’ had rendered the chaps, perhaps from its imbibement over some length of time, with certain physical attributes. Notably their tummies were of size. In addition their imbibement of the day had made them suitably incoherent and, no doubt, incapable of the charms they were offering. Still, they persisted until the line of chat from one resorted to the insulting. Suddenly, all women were lesbians (or actually lesmians given the level of ‘Testicle’ or ‘Killer Dog’ or ‘Shit Face’ or ‘Billy Bastard’s Psycho Cheap Lager Beer with added Vodka and Violence’ already taken) and this chap was going to show the ladies what they were missing.

Making a move toward the ladies, the fellow, unsteady through his Lager Beer, stumbled on a kerb and fell onto his rotund stomach. Rolling onto his back, he was floundering like a beached whale. The ladies tittered and began wandering off.

Thirty seconds in _Paul_And_Land_. And back to thoughts of Agent Orange.

Persons of the Peoples

If, like the rest of us, you rely on those sodding supermarkets that are open 24/7 (if they could, they’d add an extra day to get even more profit “Now open 8 days a week, 28 hours a day, with added automatic, non-staffed checkouts) you’ll get this concept. If you don’t get the concept, write it down (on a beer-mat or the back of a fag packet or on your hand) and then your won’t forget what it is that you don’t understand. Brilliant, you can have that for free. Right, here’s the concept.

You’re walking around your favourite sodding supermarket, piling essential upon essential in the wobbly trolley, when there it is, glimmering in the freezer section. You approach, your hand trembling, a bead of sweat on your lip, your bosom (if you have a bosom, that is) heaving. And yes, it’s true: your favourite frozen meal has an all new recipe. Will your life never be more touched? Thanking the Gods of Tesco, Asda, Morrisons, Aldi, Mr Singh’s 24 Hour News and Convenience Store (Macclesfield) Ltd, you tank it home to indulge yourself in the all newness of an all new frozen lasagne.

So, what is the all new recipe, what delights will tantalise your taste buds and pluck the strings of your digestive tract? Why, an extra half gramme of Maltodextrine and an additional sniff of flavour enhancer. Basically, you’ve been had, turned over, mugged, screwed and any other number of terms which describe the feeling of having been had, turned over, mugged or screwed. And then, horror of bloody horrors, you note that the actual all new frozen lasagne actually contains less lasagne than your all old frozen lasagne. What a sodding con and you vow to never darken the doors of Tesco, Asda, Morrisons, Aldi, Mr Singh’s 24 Hour News and Convenience Store (Macclesfield) Ltd again. Until next week at least.

So now we have Rachel Reeves, who supposedly is a Member of Parliament for the Labour Party, banging on about how the Labour Party will be tough on tough stuff.  All of these politicos are always being tough on something: tough on crime, tough on the causes of crime, tough on welfare, tough on immigration, tough on the arses of the their trousers and frocks more like. All that sitting down and words coming out of their arses, trousers and frocks get a beating internally and externally. Oooh, she makes you angry, just like your all new frozen lasagne con-trick. But, as with the problems you experience with Tesco, Asda, Morrisons, Aldi, Mr Singh’s 24 Hour News and Convenience Store (Macclesfield) Ltd inasmuch as you have no bloody choice, the same is true with the all new Ms Reeves and her ilk. No bloody choice.

But, supposedly, there’s hope in the form of all new community types with their bright horizons of community stuff. And things. Well, gosh, yes, an extra half gramme of Maltodextrine and an additional sniff of flavour enhancer. Looks like we’re being had, turned over, mugged, screwed and any other number of terms which describe the feeling of having been had, turned over, mugged or screwed.

Fortunately, here in _Paul_And_Land_ we like a nice fresh curry. We make our own. It’s not frozen and it contains no maltodextrine or flavour enhancer. And we buy the ingredients from the market. Fancy some?

It’s About Time We Had Some Poetry

So poetry we shall have.  Not quite in the Bard’s league nor in the same supermarket as Eddie or his brother Allan Poe.  But some nice flowing lines, penned by someone, to sum things up.  Well, not exactly sum things up but some lines.  A-hem (just clearing my throat), here we go, strap yourselves down as this may get rocky.  A-hem (just clearing my throat again).  Right, a poem:

The elephant is a funny bird

It leaps from twig to twig

It builds it’s nest in a rhubarb tree

And whistles like a pig.

The End

Teufelsberg – the seat of street art on the throne of devil’s mountain

Teufelsberg – the seat of street art on the throne of devil’s mountain.

Plea

Things in _Paul_And_Land_ have been quiet but not quiet. Our friends, our colleagues are suffering and perhaps, just perhaps, as the result of our own suffering we have forgotten them. We shouldn’t, we should show some compassion. Even some anger. Some empathy. External forces are ruining OUR lives. That’s OUR lives, not theirs, not someone else’s, ours.

Let’s think about that. Let’s have some WE, some US, some OUR. And a little less of the THEM, the THEY or the OTHERS.

Go on, think about it. Hard.