26 November 2010

26/11/10

Nulthamalth (fool dancer) mask from the Kwakiutl, 19th Century

Only the educated are free.
-Epictetus

249 comments:

  1. Woohoo!

    Startled meerkat found inside ancient Jaffa Cake!

    ReplyDelete
  2. I suppose if I'd gone to a football match instead of the opera or ballet after my often sixteen-hour stints on Lomé, there wouldn't be this inverted snobbery. At the end of the day the team I was working with made something of a difference. The wafflers on here haven't.

    Guess who? Just for fun, let's have a look at this selfless lifestyle. Let's say the football/opera/ballet starts at 20.00. Having worked for 16 hours (from 03.00), leave the office at 19.00 and grab a bite to eat. See the match/performance. Finished by 23.00 and off home in the train. In bed by 24.00 (quite exhausted!). Up again at 01.30 to catch the train to work. Back at the desk at 03.00 to put into another 16-hour stint saving the poor people in Africa. Go the ballet. Repeat daily* for three years or until world poverty has totally disappeared, whichever comes first.

    *(frequent expensive holidays to Chamonix, Paris, Skegness, and the more bijoux planets of the Horseshoe Nebula are not included)

    ReplyDelete
  3. jen - hope you are OK, extending a virtual hug in your direction.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Anon
    Interesting, I studied EU politics - crticism of Lome: lacking clear objectives, overly bureaucratic, failure to channel to the most needy in Africa, and very poor systems of accountability. But then, seeing a Brussels institution succesfully indicted for any of this over the last twenty years has been as likely as the Square Mile turning itself in for overdoing things and handing back our money. Interesting how some of CiF's greatest aleggedly 'liberal' stalwarts are bold-faced champions of some of the greediest edifices of Northern-hemisphere capitalism; and if you don't like it you're just chippy.
    Laughable.

    ReplyDelete
  5. on a more frivolous note, oisette has found herself a Christmas job, working in a posh choccy shop. upside: she has been given a bag of chocs to try out so she can better inform purchasers what would suit their needs. downside: significant quantities of grumbling and swearing as she practises doing that gift-wrapping thing for the presentation boxes.

    you know when the person in the shop does some sort of complex origami to get the paper round the box without using any sticky tape, and it looks wonderful and you think "ooh, how do they do that?"

    years of practice, would appear to be the answer. there are about a dozen sheets of discarded gift-wrap scattered across the floor, and there is ribbon bloody everywhere.

    ReplyDelete
  6. To the tune of Sixteen Tons

    You do sixteen hours, what do you get
    Another night rolling in Africa's debt
    Saint Peter don't you call me 'cause I can't go
    I'm too busy serving up ferrero rochere


    (Your sacked ! - Ed)

    ReplyDelete
  7. bitterweed - there was some confusion when (I thought) she decried this as 'manual labour', but it turns out of course she was just making the point that she is shit at making things.

    have pointed out that she's a bloody good guitarist so must have some manual dexterity. this was not viewed as helpful...

    ReplyDelete
  8. Morning all,
    Hearty chuckles from Afghanistan where secret talks between the Govt and the Taliban ran into some difficulties….
    “"it turns out, Mr. Mansour was apparently not Mr. Mansour at all... United States and Afghan officials now say the Afghan man was an impostor, and high-level discussions conducted with the assistance of NATO appear to have achieved little... ...“It’s not him,” said a Western diplomat in Kabul intimately involved in the discussions. “And we gave him a lot of money.”

    Yes, after nearly 10 years, a trillion dollars and appalling death and casualty rates…..NATO and the Afghani Government have absolutely no idea who they are fighting!

    ReplyDelete
  9. Morning all

    This bloody cold has properly kicked in. Is it too early to start on the hot toddies?

    Jenn

    Hope you're feeling a bit better this morning. Stay strong. Hugs :-)

    ReplyDelete
  10. Ferrero Roche advert--an update


    Alan Whicker (for it is he):

    "We're here at the ambassador's reception and it is a truly glittering occasion where the great and the good of Brussels have gathered to enjoy some well-deserved relaxation. Let's talk to some of the guests...Good evening Madam..."

    a burly, unshaven man in a ballgown stares balefully at Whicker

    "May we ask your name and what brings you to this glamorous affair?"

    Brusselsexpest (for it is she..erm, he...erm..):

    "Well, Alan, after a simply exhausting day filled with charitable works, I like to relax in an an atmosphere of civilised sophistication. Normally, I'm at the ballet or the opera but dear Repulsivo is an old friend and such a charmer that I had to make an appearance at his little soiree..."

    Whicker:

    "And what is it that you enjoy most about these affairs?"

    BruSexPest:

    "Well, Alan, as an urbane and, dare I say it, chic individual, it's the confectionary that I find irresistible."

    Whicker,(somewhat non-plussed):

    "The confectionary?"

    BrSePst: "That's right, Alan. Nothing says 'sophistication' quite like balls of erzatz chocolate-covered Rice Krispies wrapped in gold foil...mmmmm...superb..."

    Passing Ambassador:

    "Excellente!"


    continues until the heat death of the universe

    ReplyDelete
  11. I've been modded, could somebody unmod me? Thanks.


    Jennifer,

    I've just read through yesterday's threads. Please accept my best wishes and I hope that everything works out for the best (which I am sure it will).

    ReplyDelete
  12. Oh m’sieur Jack Cade, you are rilly spoiling ur-r-r-rsss…

    ReplyDelete
  13. Thanks for all the good wishes, having had time to get over the shock has helped a lot and I am feeling a lot better this morning.

    ReplyDelete
  14. Hi Jen,

    Glad you feeling better!

    Duke,

    I'll have a looky...

    ReplyDelete
  15. jen - glad to hear it - the shock must have been immense. as that abates you can 'collect things' to support your sister and the kids. good luck with it. and come and vent whenever, you need to look after yourself as well.

    ReplyDelete
  16. Thanks Thauma,

    and even more chuckles from the world of Dutch Politics where the anti islamic "party of law and order" continue their transformation into the Wormwood Scrubs Party.

    Another three PVV MP's have been revealed this week to have 'previous'- Hero Brinkman was arrested for failing to stop for a breathalyser check and then found over the limit, Marcial Hernandez is in court over headbutting and assault and Jhim van Bemmel has been revealed to be (another) convicted PVV fraudster.

    Poor old Wilders is "totally sick of the media witch hunt". That's what you get when you run a campaign of lies and hatred and stuff your party full of neanderthal criminal knuckledraggers Geert.

    ReplyDelete
  17. totally sick of the media witch hunt

    Are there any at all in the party who aren't putative crims, Yr Grace? And why aren't the Dutch up in arms about a political party that sounds more like a branch of the Mafia? Or perhaps they are and the media here isn't covering it, which wouldn't surprise me.

    ReplyDelete
  18. My dear friends

    As you know, now that I have time on my hands having borne the heat and burden of the day I feel it is my duty – and, no doubt, your pleasure – to pass on to you younger folk the wisdom I have acquired through my long service in hard stations. Yet I, too, was once green in the ways of the world. In the ‘30s, when making my way in the import-export trade in Morocco I was an habitué of a now defunct club, the Colony in Fez - call it CiF, if you will. It was there, in fact, that I met Mrs Selfmade (then just plain Miss Wound) who was employed as a cigarette girl. And it was there that I was taken under the wing of a sprightly old gent from the Legation, Archie Twistleton de Courtney by name, who passed on to me his hard-won knowledge of the various rum types at the club. In my next letter I will tell you, in his own words, what he taught me all those years ago. Further portraits of club members will follow.

    Yours nostalgically,

    Selfmademan.

    ReplyDelete
  19. Archie's wise words follow:

    “One type you will come across is ex-military (normally catering corps, whilst pretending to more exotic service), or perhaps an ex-financier of the dodgier sort, or perhaps both – you know the kind of fellow I am talking about. On first joining the club, he seemed to be a bit of a card, with refreshingly elan views, a robust argumentative style and a sprightly turn of phrase. Yet soon it became clear that those views were of nugatory value; the arguments meretricious and unoriginal; the phraseology pretentious and shop-soiled. Whilst having a small coterie of fawning admirers, most club regulars increasingly avoided him - but still all would have been well had it not emerged that he had an overweaning desire for ‘recognition’. Recognition as what? As intellectual, as raconteur, as all round good fellow, superior in his way but one of the lads, nonetheless.

    Sensing his ambitions, the Club Secretary kindly but, as we will see, foolishly invited him to prepare some lectures for the Guest night slots. His first effort, denouncing fellow-members as deluded when compared to his own Olympian achievements unsurprisingly attracted much outraged comment. Unfortunately this encouraged him to an altogether more tragic pose: he began to conceive of himself as a ‘character’. Thus his next lecture articulated his fantasies of super-heroism and the one after his self-image as a linen-suited, freewheeling motor bicycle enthusiast.

    At this point the Club secretary withdrew the invitations to lecture but it was too late as something very unfortunate had happened to this poor chap, something which infuriated his very sense of self: he had become a laughing stock. Scorned by CiF’s bigwheels, he was now harried and abused by even the most obscure pipsqeaks from amongst the club’s membership. They simply fell over themselves with cruel laughter. It was quite horrible to see.

    The dignified thing for our man - let’s call him Pierre Fougere, it’s only a name - to do would have been to quietly disappear but that he could not do. He had to respond to his critics, first trying to appeal for sympathy and then beginning to lash out at all and sundry. Club members whom he would in the past have not even noticed had to be replied to individually, each scornful remark countered with an ever-more extravagant insult. Perhaps he was drinking too much – who knows? Either way it was not long before he simply sat at the bar hurling obscenities at everyone, insisting that he did not care what anyone thought, insisting he cared nothing for their approval. In his mind’s eye he was still that debonair character who, in the early days, had made so many friends and was now – surely – not just a damned good fellow but a Club lecturer (even, if, admittedly, no longer on the approved list), not the blustering, bombastic bore he had unwittingly become in the eyes of others.

    And, even now, a few club members fed his vanity with approving remarks. If only, he fumed, his many enemies could also recognize this fine fellow for what he was – officer, man of the world, intellect, character; why, in his own way, an artist! What Pierre Fougere could not see was that his true enemies were precisely those few who fed his fading dreams of recognition rather than the many who sought to alert him to his failings. Nor that his true tragedy was that his fatal, unrealized and unrealizable desire – so deeply buried as to be unknown even to himself – to be liked rendered him not just dislikeable, which would be tragedy enough, but disgusting, even to himself.”

    ReplyDelete
  20. Dear Mr Selfmade

    Am rather poorly and having a day in bed - very dull! So look forward with great pleasure to any stories that might be forthcoming about the old days in the Moroccan import/export trade.

    ReplyDelete
  21. sheff
    Are there any at all in the party who aren't putative crims, Yr Grace?
    well, they found one, but he was kicked out for lowering the tone...

    ReplyDelete
  22. That’s odd. I once ran into an ex-German military chappie while on the run in Argentina (don’t ask…) called “Herr Doktor Peter Farnkraut”… sounds similar to your man there, Unmade.

    And another oddity – while casually reading Caesar’s De Bello Gallico (again, don’t ask…), I came across the Praetorian Commander of Legio IV “Flavia Felix”, one “Petrus Pteridium Esculentum”.

    Most odd – but history seems cluttered with this chap.

    ReplyDelete
  23. Unmade, you're not Joseph Conrad's illegitimate grandson, are you?

    ReplyDelete
  24. Funnily enough Swifty - I met a similar chap in Karthoum a couple of decades ago - a bit down at heel, wielding a bottle of cheap whisky and bemoaning the loss of the British Officers club.

    ReplyDelete
  25. Sheff

    Odder and odder – checking my well-thumbed copy of “War ‘n’ Peace”, as you do… I find

    Пётр Папоротник-Орляк

    who was (or is?) an officer in the élite Pavlograd Hussars….

    I think we’d better let Dan Brown know, this could be the greatest time travel-related conspiracy in history and times gone by…

    ReplyDelete
  26. Hi Sheff,

    the Dutch press have been ferocious in chasing up the PVV. They base this on the fact that Wilders himself advocated a zero tolerance policy on crime during the election campaign (especially immigrants). Therefore the press are simply practicing what Geert preaches.

    It really delightful schadenfreude watching them squirm.

    In governmental terms, the Govt only has a one seat majority based on Wilders support. Apparently there is more scandal to be divulged next week.

    However, the way the Dutch parliamentary system works, if a PVV MP resigns (which one did last week) Wilders can simply choose another as replacement thus keeping the Government majority.

    The question is how long can the Government be seen to be in alliance with a non democratic party full of criminals.

    Last week, the PVV had a meeting on introducing democracy within the party. At the moment there is none- it's Wilder baby. Wilders rejected democracy within the party reportedly saying:

    "Democracy is a 19th/20th Century concept".

    Now if that doesn't give you the creeps I don't know what would.

    ReplyDelete
  27. Consider yourself lucky, unmade, that I read Sue Marsh's heartfelt plea for understanding before I read your latest bovine, self loathing paean to resentment.

    ReplyDelete
  28. Swifty

    Was just checking my Xenophon....and guess what?!? - Ptolemy had this aide....

    ReplyDelete
  29. "Democracy is a 19th/20th Century concept".

    It does give me the creeps Yr Grace. Seems the Dutch could do with remembering their mid 20thC history.

    ReplyDelete
  30. Duke
    Have you seen the Gruan's People Panel today - five Europhiles speak out ! I'd almost forgotten how appallingly narrow the CiF editorial view on EU is, and how one dimensional most arguments BTL ever get. Stunning...

    ReplyDelete
  31. “Right you guys” snarled the English Army Major, like a wild beast unleashed from its leash. “Listen bloody up!”

    In times of tense stress, he was given over to letting his Britisherisms surface to the top of his speech.

    “I’ve had about as gor Blimey much as I can take of all this kvetching and kibbutzing! If you all don’t blinking well sort it out Mary Poppins, I’ll march you all straight down to the Tower of England in London (England) and get your jolly old nappers lopped off, you wankers!”

    “Evenin’ all” interjected a British bobby, bending his legs at the knee.

    (note to Blanche: this will look totally awesome in the movie adaptation! This crazy Limey soldier dude in his shiny metal suit on a big horse! And a British bobby! Wait a second, I’ve had totally radical idea!)

    “Bong! Bong!” The sound of Big Ben tolled gloomily through the London (England) fog.

    “Any old iron?” called a little match girl from atop London Bridge.

    Etc etc.

    ReplyDelete
  32. jen just wanted to say i read yesterdays thread at the end of a long catch up of UT and I wanted to say I am really sorry.

    I hope you are holding up okay and all my thoughts go to you and your sister and the children.

    ReplyDelete
  33. Sheff - hope you feel better soon.

    ReplyDelete
  34. Consider yourself lucky, unmade, that I read Sue Marsh's heartfelt plea for understanding before I read your latest bovine, self loathing paean to resentment

    Oh dear Peter...I fear for you now..

    ReplyDelete
  35. Princess

    Am remaining stoically in bed - with occasional forays to the kitchen for nibbles and hot toddies. Will probably be pissed by tea time, so can't complain.

    ReplyDelete
  36. "Will probably be pissed by tea time, so can't complain."

    Life is riddled with such trade-offs Sheff !

    Anyone seen Bitey ?

    ReplyDelete
  37. Oh dear Peter...I fear for you now..

    Yes, is there no way we could persuade Bracken to actually go into politics, as he once appeared to plan - as long as all the little people asked him both nicely and ever so 'umbly?

    It would be constant pure comedy gold.

    ReplyDelete
  38. PS Bernard Matthews has just snuffed it – rather appositely, the day after Thanksgiving, and in the run-up to Christmas. Insert your own gags here.

    Right, pub beckons, then wobbly journey home. Enjoy your weekends, all.

    ReplyDelete
  39. Not into animal rights, but I find it hard to be bothered about a man who spent thirty years building an empire around something so loathesome.

    ReplyDelete
  40. Bitterweed - me neither. He invented that turkey bacon didn't he? Turkey Bacon! Foul stuff - boom boom.

    Sheff - sounds like a good plan :)

    ReplyDelete
  41. Turkey Bacon ? Would go nice with Cheesy Peas...

    ReplyDelete
  42. How you anyway pcc - and when we getting pissed again ?

    ReplyDelete
  43. Many thanks to Pairbru (on waddya) for introducing me to Amanda McKittrick Ros of whom I had never heard (although judging from his prose preferences, Brakkers is probably a fan).

    ReplyDelete
  44. I am not too bad BW thanks mate. How about you? As for getting pissed again - dunno is there a Sheffield gig being organised for some time in the New Year or is that off for now?

    Turkey bacon is awful. My mate was on weightwatchers and she ate it because it was less fattening than bacon so she made me some of it for breakfast. It was like cardboard and tasteless. Yeuch.

    As for cheesey peas - what? I have had cheesey chips but not these cheesey peas! I have recently become converted to mushy peas - I used to hate them but now am a bit obssessed with them. Morrisons mushy peas with mint are lovely.

    My cousin has a cupboard of tins in - she always buys some spare and keeps them as she is teriffied of 'em cutting her dole. Anyway she bought some pease pudding - now THAT looks weird. I don't think she'll be eating that one any time soon.

    ReplyDelete
  45. Sheff
    Polar opposite of that - but have you ever read Rene Cutforth's Order to View ?

    One of my all time favourites... apparently hardly anyone seems to have read it, apart from Clive James...

    ReplyDelete
  46. Right all, off to get ready for work. But thought i would put in a link to this rather cool photo on The Torygraph: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/picturegalleries/picturesoftheday/8162015/Pictures-of-the-day-26-November-2010.html

    (Sorry I know I have GOT to learn to do proper links but bung it in google and it comes up).

    ReplyDelete
  47. There's a lot to be said for a day in bed. Not only have I been introduced to the worlds best worst writer but now to EJ Moeran an English composer I also knew nothing about - but who wrote beautiful music. (Play on R4). Its turning out to be rather a good day after all.

    ReplyDelete
  48. Cheesy Peas was a spoof commodity invented by the Fast Show...

    Piss up in the New Year sounds promising

    As does one on April 29th.

    Meanwhile, first joke I've seen:

    bernard matthews......best before 25 11 2010

    ReplyDelete
  49. "Startled meerkat found inside ancient Jaffa Cake!"

    Happens to me all the time.

    ReplyDelete
  50. "bernard matthews......best before 25 11 2010"

    Inspired.

    ReplyDelete
  51. I remember Rene cutforth Bitters - a good journalist, but I haven't read any of his books. Maybe I should.

    Clive James said of him "Cutforth is that rare thing, a front man with background. Fitzrovia and Soho weigh heavily on his eye lids. His voice sounds like tea-chests full of books being shifted about."

    ReplyDelete
  52. Sheffpixie
    My old man loved his broadcasts - described his voice as like whisky and cigars.

    ReplyDelete
  53. Two questions are preoccupying me at the moment:

    1) what's with the nazi thing? and
    2) Where is my snow?

    ReplyDelete
  54. (I'm home with the poorlies, so that's about the extent of my intellectual musings today.)

    ReplyDelete
  55. Surecate - I'm not sure! Suspect she's trying to have a go at Monkeyfish.

    ReplyDelete
  56. She got awfully snippy when asked... :-D

    ReplyDelete
  57. Bl**dy hell, is there a cyber virus going around the UT or summat? Just spent the last 2 days asleep, literally, then crawled into work for a presentation this morning, shivered my way through it then came home again. Nothing intellectual from me today either (no change there then!)

    Adding my good wishes/condolences/whatever you need to jenn though!

    ReplyDelete
  58. Hope all the sickies feel better. I'll raise a glass for you at the pub.

    ReplyDelete
  59. Cheers Thauma, I've also got a friend drinking for two for me at a work party I'm skipping tonight!

    ReplyDelete
  60. Surecate

    Have some of our snow, I have had enough already, had to pretty much skate to the shops earlier, not fun.

    ReplyDelete
  61. Dot.surecate

    You're both down with the lurgy too? I managed a morning at work yesterday but had to totter home at lunchtime. Just hoping it's only a bad cold and I can flush it out with sufficient alcohol.

    thauma

    Just off to get another hot toddy. Re the dark side - I don't think she likes the competition. Curious, that although she complains constantly about the spats, she's pretty good at upping the ante herself.

    ReplyDelete
  62. Sheff,

    Yep, mine was a sore throat Sunday-Wed morning, then sore throat, shivers, inability to do anything except sleep Wed morning to this morning. Managed aforementioned presentation now home again, thought of alcohol gives me the heebie jeebies, tanked up on all other freely available legal drugs though ;-) (c'ept nictotine, don't do nicotine)

    Therefore missed stuff, who's the dark side?

    ReplyDelete
  63. Evening all

    Hugs to all those with the lurg. Lemsip, strepsils and hot toddies are the only way.

    Jen - good to hear you are feeling a bit better. Hugs.

    Off to have a poke about on Cif...

    ReplyDelete
  64. Dot

    Whats the dark side? - just waddya - where from my bed of pain, I've been following the doings of everyday posting folk. Bru got snappy with meerkatje. I think she's jealous.

    I don't know whether it's 'cos I'm feverish but I was just imagining a 'waddya' site, rather like the one the Archers have, with maps; where the doings of the regulars and their habitats can be followed.

    ReplyDelete
  65. "Surecate - I'm not sure! Suspect she's trying to have a go at Monkeyfish."

    Not necessarily...calling people Nazis is pretty much a knee-jerk thing with a lot of would-be 'progressives'...It's a fairly routine tactic of a certain Celtic Jew who spent his youth charming the nuns at his Catholic school with his prodigious abilities on the piano...the Peruvian Nose-flute...or whatever..depending on which cultural endowment he happened to be 'channelling' at the time.

    It's a sure sign of various intersecting spheres of delusion. I think it works roughly like this...take one very self-centred, self-loving individual who, for various considerations..perhaps dictated by personal or professional expediency...has decided to designate themselves 'liberal', 'cultured' or 'progressive'...this designation, note, has absolutely nothing to do with their actual beliefs, preferences or prejudices...it's just proved convenient or beneficial in the past.

    Then...start ripping into said individual by deconstructing what they say and drawing attention to the fact that they are actually a deluded, narrow-minded moron whose real sympathies seem always to run parallel to those of the affluent middle-classes...ie neo-liberal corporate lackeys with a touch of egalitarian/eco/multicultural/'highbrow' PR to mask the taste...think: Peter Mandelson in a Benneton jumper.

    They decide to hit back...but what to do?...lacking any real intelligence or imagination, but wanting to sound vaguely left-wing, radical and angry..they search for a suitable rejoinder...then..out of nowhere...a moment of blinding inspiration..."I know..I'll shout RACIST...or NAZI"

    No rhyme, reason, rationality or justification...just "RACIST"...stands to reason, they suppose..

    "I'm a wonderful person and liberal in outlook...I'm being 'attacked'..therefore, my attacker must be a racist" QED...it's a sure sign of a poverty of understanding and self-awareness. If I could be bothered, I'd nip over there and call them both paedophiles or budgie-stranglers or something...no particular reason...just y'know...sounds 'good'.

    ReplyDelete
  66. There was a sudden yell of 'EDL' scum on a thread the other day, which had me puzzled too...

    I'm pretty secure in my non-right wing status. I even have a couple of scars to prove it. :-)

    ReplyDelete
  67. Aw, they deleted the bit where Bru told me to 'get lost'. That was funny, that was.

    ReplyDelete
  68. I would like to apologize for my previous crass comments about 16-hour shifts and ballet. Apparently it was sheer unmitigated hell for the saintly, dedicated aid workers in Brussels. They were dropping like flies!

    The asbestos was falling into our coffee cups it was such a decrepit place. And I nearly crashed to the floor in one of the ancient lifts. For the Lomé stint we were located at the Centre Borchette at the end of the rue Froissart, next to the Clinique Léopold. That was fun because whenever anyone collapsed with exhaustion, the medics would arrive and cart them off right next door.

    The horror! The horror!

    ReplyDelete
  69. 'EDL' scum...

    means: "help..I'm out of my depth...again...what can I do?...I know I'll try and slur you as a racist then everyone will realise that I'm being targeted by right-wing thugs who hate me for my intelligence and humanity"

    Don't worry about it...it didn't work for him the first 583 times either

    The traditional response is: "Martyn...where do you-a known fantasist, cheerleader for 'pan-Celtic revivalism' and an aficionado of racist abuse-get the fuckin nerve to call me a racist?"

    ReplyDelete
  70. Right, words dancing, think I need to stop looking at screen.

    Have good Friday nights all!

    ReplyDelete
  71. My dear Major Bracken

    I was delighted to receive your letter and I am lucky indeed that you are such an understanding fellow. Why else, indeed, would you take the time to write to a poor, broken down wretch such as me? But, certainly, it was the highlight of my day. Admittedly, that is not such an accolade as it may at first appear. Friday is the day that my pedicurist files the rather persistent corn on my left foot, so you can see that there was not much competition for the top spot! (Only joking, Pete!)

    By the way, I couldn’t help but detect a certain froideur in your tone and I hope there was nothing in my previous which you took to refer to you. No, no, the character in question was an entirely obnoxious sort.

    Now that we’ve cleared that up, I wonder if I could ask you for some advice? Let’s not beat around the bush, it’s abundantly obvious to all those reading this letters page that I can’t write for toffee. I can’t recall a single occasion when anyone has praised my lumbering efforts or indicated that they can discern any skill, merit or humour in them. No doubt this can be attributed to my humble origins but I’ll be honest with you: it gets me down. You are obviously a chap with outstanding command of the English language who is also widely admired and popular, as well as being clearly of a pleasant and generous temperament. I therefore wondered if you would consider taking me under your wing for some remedial classes? True, it would be a stretch down for you but I fear that unless someone takes me in hand I will continue to inflict my shameful efforts on a world that frankly deserves better. So consider it less a favour to me than a public service.

    Just one thing. My children warn me that one of the dangers of the “interweb” is that people sometimes use false names and I would like to be assured that I am dealing with the real Peter Bracken and not some ghastly imposter. I wouldn’t want to sign up for a course under you only to realise later that you were all fingers and thumbs with the Daily Sport. I’m sure that, as man of the world, you understand my natural caution. Perhaps the easiest thing would be if you could supply me with some examples of your own prose. As well as proving your bona fides this would serve as an inspiration to me (and no doubt others) in providing a template to which I can, however vainly, aspire.

    Thank you so much again for writing to me. It gave me the kind of thrill I have only experienced before when out fishing, and feeling the first bite from what will later be a splendid exhibit to be stuffed and mounted in my display cabinet.

    Your humble pupil if you will have me,

    Selfmade

    ReplyDelete
  72. Jenni

    Glad to see you are feeling better today - getting over your horrible shock.

    Thinking of your sister and her children and wishing them strength and support. xx

    ReplyDelete
  73. Surecate said...
    Aw, they deleted the bit where Bru told me to 'get lost'. That was funny, that was.

    26 November, 2010 16:35


    Yep, my comment suggesting that bringing up both Nazis and also a potentially adverarial debate about EU posters was akin to lighting-the-blue-touch-paper in time for the weekend also got modded.

    ReplyDelete
  74. Hevers

    Perhaps Bru was hoping to get a little spat going over the weekend which she could then be all superior about next week when she's back in the office. Cunning!

    ReplyDelete
  75. Had quick read of waadya and have now realised that our natural revulsion and contempt for Nazis, Fcists,Racists, far right ideologues and in fact anyone who thinks or practices eugenics or repression and suppression of people has to be actually recorded - rather than naturally assumed.

    I register my objection to these 'people'.

    Neither am I enchanted by paedophiles, torturers, war mongers, rligious bigots or ethnic supremacists. Does that cover it ?

    ReplyDelete
  76. I think you covered it Leni. Should we salute now?

    ReplyDelete
  77. anon
    You take the piss, but evidently what they were doing in that creaky old building makes Medecins Sans Frontiers look like a tea party.

    ReplyDelete
  78. How goes it MF ? I'm off out for the night in a minute, be good to catch up soon.

    I have some really good memorabila MengeleInEavesham has lent me. Daggers, Flags, old fillings, etc.

    Laters!

    ReplyDelete
  79. Sheff

    I clearly deserve some accolade for my obvious humanity. I'm not just a pretty face atop a desirable , fashionably clothed body you know.

    ReplyDelete
  80. 'Does that cover it?'

    What about people who fold up their empty crisps packets and tie them into little knots and then put them in an ashtray? I'll bet they're rife on Cif. We should speak out.

    ReplyDelete
  81. @Leni:

    I think you left out people who kick puppies for fun.

    ReplyDelete
  82. Sheffpixie said...
    Hevers

    Perhaps Bru was hoping to get a little spat going over the weekend which she could then be all superior about next week when she's back in the office. Cunning!
    26 November, 2010 17:18


    Yes, it had all gotten very civilised, talking about novels and poetry, so obviously with the weekend coming it's important to talk about Nazis and purported biases against the EU instead.

    Meanwhile spatbot tried to interpret my post as suggesting the thorny topic of "gender bias", even though I was talking about what others had said and no one had brought that up.

    it's not all fun fun fun over at Waddya!!

    ReplyDelete
  83. anon and Montana

    Sometimes reading waddya I feel I need to condemn everybody who isn't me.

    The crisp packet thing is certainly disturbing and suggestive of a mean and crumpled soul contained with the ashy, burnt remains of unfulfilled hopes and aspiration of youth.

    ReplyDelete
  84. Funny that , I've often thought it was like Tourette's, where there is a right wing tic every now and again slap bang in the middle of people talking about some thing innocuous

    blah blah songs blah "here's a Horst Wessel song", blah chat blah "the war!", blah "the hun!", blah Brontes blah Austin blah "don't talk about Mein Kampf".

    Frankly it is a bit bizarre. One wonders if Godwin's law should be renamed.

    ReplyDelete
  85. Oh fuck.

    I do that with crisp packets - although I don't put them in the ashtray.

    A lawyer? Anally retentive? Whodathunkit?!

    ReplyDelete
  86. 'The crisp packet thing is certainly disturbing and suggestive of a mean and crumpled soul contained with the ashy, burnt remains of unfulfilled hopes and aspiration of youth.'

    Well put! Where's bitey today?

    ReplyDelete
  87. Where's bitey today?

    Busy fleecing some unfortunate Chinese students probably. He Will Be Back.

    I generally fold crisp packets into small squares and tuck them into other people's pockets.

    ReplyDelete
  88. You always were a rebel, Sheff. I smooth them flat and put them under an empty glass so they don't blow away.

    ReplyDelete
  89. UT just suffered a spectacular crash - reloaded and relieved to see it was not fatal.

    Tim

    I usually ignore the nasties on waddya but it is becoming increasingly obvious that some are seeding the ground for conflict.

    Too many of these types IRL without them gongonlie to pay their nasty games.

    ReplyDelete
  90. Am I the only one who's finding it increasingly difficult to raise a commenting gallop on CiF at the moment?

    The articles are just endless identity politics re-hashes, Toynbee seems to be cut and pasting the same article week in, week out and Waddya feels like a closed shop if you don't subscribe to the same in-jokes and interests as the regulars.

    Oh and zero change with the moderation. As a wise man once said to me, "Their pub, their rules." Just don't be surprised if you turn around one day and the only people that remain are the same barfly bores that are always there.

    ReplyDelete
  91. jen
    sorry to hear you news , it must be a difficult time for your sister,her children and you, stay strong.

    bloody nippy here in rome as well.....

    get well all those that are green around the gills........

    anything apart from fag butts and ash in ash trays is a big no no from me especially plastic stuff .......

    ReplyDelete
  92. @Eddie

    There's a depressing amount of repetitive sloganising, which seems impervious to any kind of argument. Apart from correcting blatant errors of fact, pointing out the more obvious hypocrisies, and sometimes linking to better material, there doesn't seem much point in saying anything. The only response is going to be a barrage of meatheaded cliches.

    ReplyDelete
  93. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  94. Back from pub. Too cold.

    Sheff

    Just off to get another hot toddy. Re the dark side - I don't think she likes the competition. Curious, that although she complains constantly about the spats, she's pretty good at upping the ante herself.

    Hope you (and the rest) don't have the dreaded LaRit Lurgy which apparently lasts 6 weeks. She seems to have done a bit of distribution at the London drinkies. ;-) (Although to be fair, it could equally have been BB, who was suffering from the same thing.)

    The muppet seems to be really having a meltdown - her posts to Meerkatjie were just nasty, for no apparent reason.

    Monkeyfish - Peruvian nose-flute - almost caused a Cheap Red Nose-flute Over Keyboard (CRNOK).

    Re Benetton: I worked at a dry cleaner's when I was at school and we had to get a release signed for Benetton clothes because they were such crap quality: colours would run, shrinkage, they'd fall apart, etc. The branch was in an affluent area, so we got quite a lot of Benetton clothes, and the snootier of the customers were incredibly miffed at having to sign the release - "do you know how much this cost? - "don't give a shit; it's crap: sign it or we don't clean it".

    Bru's meltdown was quite odd.

    Unmade - some lovely letters today. Hope the bunion isn't causing too much trouble.

    BW - evidently what they were doing in that creaky old building makes Medecins Sans Frontiers look like a tea party.

    Hehehehehehe.

    Crisp packets. Ahem. I have a couple of close relatives who do that. They're not all bad. (The relatives, not the crisp packets.)

    ReplyDelete
  95. timboktutu said...

    Frankly it is a bit bizarre. One wonders if Godwin's law should be renamed.

    Brussels Law?

    The longer a thread goes on, the more likely she will mention...

    ... bit spoilt for choice, really.

    ReplyDelete
  96. BW

    I'm good..just picked up a crate of Stella...like a fuckin ice rink around here...holing up for the weekend.

    looked at Waddaya

    Couple of 'jealous types' seem to be feeling a bit neglected...nobody seems to be noticing the recipes, the last dregs of 80s literary clichés or the constant stream of precious solipsism emanating from the crumbling and precarious ruins of the last oasis of civilisation...where passionate young idealists risk life,limb and asbestosis in the most horrendous conditions imaginable...and for a mere pittance ...to...erm...move other people's money around...at huge cost... to places where it wasn't meant to end up..most of the time

    "It's time we did something Bru...don't they know who we are?...don't they know we are Waddaya?"

    Bru and Kiz spring into action

    ReplyDelete
  97. Eddie - no, you aren't. Can't actually be arsed to comment on most articles, even those few I have liked. There is no-one interesting to engage with. BTL gets more and more tedious.

    MF - genius link!

    ReplyDelete
  98. MF
    who's the fluffy one......?

    sums 'em up really.......



    found maryon in egham

    ReplyDelete
  99. Any problem in the office for a couple of the waddya intellectuals can cause their Cif comments to fall from the customary 30/40 to a disappointing 20.

    neo-nazi fascist printer

    ReplyDelete
  100. I'm bored shitless with CiF atm too. One or two articles catch my eye - I was enjoying having a go at the posh numpties on the bonuses thread last night, for example, and did a long and very technical post on buddhism on the Thai buddhist abortion thread. But aside from that it is just random ramblings of a bored woman here. As usual.
    (No sniggering at the back!)

    MF - crate of stella sounds good. I've got a crate of John Smiths and am pretty much holed up too although we haven't had the snow here. It is still colder than a well-diggers ass, though. Not going out til the temperature goes about 3c.

    ReplyDelete
  101. Bru's meltdown was quite odd.

    Well, I haven't looked at Waddya today and it sounds like most of it's been zapped (?), but nothing seems odd from her anymore.

    She recently claimed to have e-mails (from me, presumably) that would 'prove' her side of the story of her departure from UT -- I think she referred to 'gross betrayal'. She doesn't seem to remember that I, too, have all of the e-mails that were ever exchanged between us and that Deano thoughtfully preserved her swansong post, so it's all there in the UT archives.

    I think the stupid cunt really does believe that she was a victim of bullying here. I'd really love it if she'd go through the UT archives & her e-mails to 'prove' it.

    ReplyDelete
  102. monkeyfish,

    if you can get out the house, the SFA are desperate for referees this weekend due to the strike so the fixture list can go ahead.

    You don't have to know anything about refereeing or the rules of football. All you have to know is how the consequences of the game you are refereeing will positively help Rangers to the title and referee accordingly.

    Apparently there's a crate of Tennent's lager as payment.

    ReplyDelete
  103. @Duke

    It looks like there are some jobs that even Poles just won't do.

    ReplyDelete
  104. RapidEddie said...

    Am I the only one who's finding it increasingly difficult to raise a commenting gallop on CiF at the moment?

    If you didn't conspire to have posters banned RapidE, it might be somewhat different.

    ReplyDelete
  105. Bitterweed said...

    Anyone seen Bitey ?

    Nice of you to be concerned BW but I thought in the circumstances it would be better not to intrude yesterday.

    As it happens I've been visiting my mother Mrs Bitethehand, preparing and eating lunch, commiserating with her at the death of her current best friend at 93 and discussing MrsBootstraps' support for the Thai Government's anti-abortion policy which results in the death of an estimated 67,000 women every year, after unsafe and obviously illegal abortions.

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2010/nov/25/abortion-reform-buddhism-thailand

    The more MrsB writes about Buddhism, the less it sounds like the religion of enlightenment and the more like a rather barbaric patriarchal preservation ideology. My mother said it's very strange that MrsB objects to aborting a few weeks old foetus but chomps away on steak from once living fully mature cattle, accompanied by a bottle or two of Cotes du Rhone. And when I told her I'd been called a slimy cockroach recently, not by her I should add, she quipped you'd better hope you're living in a Buddhist home or you might be stamped on.

    Now MrsBitethehand herself has no truck with the abortionists, or alcohol, except on high days and holidays, but didn't turn her nose up at steak and kidney pudding for lunch, and being formerly in the medical profession she recognises the primacy of saving a woman's life rather than seeing her die as a result of serious complications in pregnancy. She feels that MrsBootstraps needs seriously to examine her conscience on this matter.

    ReplyDelete
  106. "My mother said it's very strange that MrsB objects to aborting a few weeks old foetus but chomps away on steak from once living fully mature cattle, accompanied by a bottle or two of Cotes du Rhone. And when I told her I'd been called a slimy cockroach recently, not by her I should add, she quipped you'd better hope you're living in a Buddhist home or you might be stamped on."

    You always pretend you are your mother when you are saying something vile, don't you? Have you got a rocking-chair in your cellar too?

    You clearly didn't understand a fucking word of what I said on that thread, did you, you thick numpty.

    By the way - found your song on youtube, bitey.

    Now fuck off, there's a dear. The grown-ups are talking.

    ReplyDelete
  107. Your Grace

    If it was a crate of Buckfast I'd be up for it.

    ReplyDelete
  108. Peter,

    I know, it's all bullshit. The referee in question at the Celtic-Dundee Utd game was found to be lying about his decision to u-turn a celtic penalty, he didn't lose his job despite official complaints by Celtic and his subsequent admittance.

    Additionally, the head of Scottish refereeing Hugh Dallas was caught out sending joke emails alluding to the Pope being a paedophile on the day of his visit to Scotland.

    And lastly, the soon to be new president of the SFA, Campbell Ogilvie, was the secretary of Rangers during their era of sectarian signing policies.

    The Scottish footballing establishment has been found out, Scottish referees have been found out and rather than admit it, they go out on strike boo hooing about intimidation.

    Total joke.

    ReplyDelete
  109. BB,

    you'd need a crate of buckfast to numb the pain of watching a Scottish game these days.

    ReplyDelete
  110. Bitey,

    I'm so tanked up on cold and flu medication (and flu itself) that I can't see straight, and even I can see that's not what BB was saying!

    POB POB POB POB POB POB POB POB POB POB POB POB

    BTW any failure to reply to a reply of yours is merely me having passed out due to 'flu/boredom.

    ReplyDelete
  111. It's a real bloody joke, by the sound of things, Your Grace

    Was listening to a bit about on the steam wireless this morning in the bath. What the hell do they think they are playing at?!!

    ReplyDelete
  112. Hi Dot - get well soon, hon. x

    And thanks for clearing that up, although it is just the usual manuphage smear tactics. He will now quote three lines out of context, tack them onto another three lines out of context, change the first three words in the "paragraph" to match his fevered imaginings and post it for all and sundry.

    I am not entirely sure that I am wrong when I say it is because he is too thick to actually understand what I was writing about though... anyone who can read that post as being patriarchal anti-abortionist is either mad, off their meds or too stupid to be allowed out without their Mummy... oh...wait...

    ReplyDelete
  113. Sheffpixie said....

    Where's bitey today?

    Busy fleecing some unfortunate Chinese students probably. He Will Be Back.


    As it happens the generosity I show to Chinese students means that they get an excellent education in the schools, colleges and universities of the UK, the USA, Australia, New Zealand, France, Canada, Thailand, Singapore and more.

    Sadly when they're in those countries they sometimes come up against bigoted individuals like you pixie, who sully the reputation of these institutions and those of us who support them, for want of a cheap jibe.

    ReplyDelete
  114. "Generosity"?

    Damn, I had no idea you were a multi-millionaire philanthropist that travelled China at your own expense, munificently bestowing your gifts of anglo-saxon education on them out of the kindness of your little manuphage heart.

    Bless.

    Do Children in Need know about you? I think you should have a starring role alongside Pudsey next year.

    ReplyDelete
  115. As for you calling Sheff bigotted... I'd laugh if it wasn't so clear that whatever lonely marbles you had rattling around in that numbskull of yours finally appear to have taken the escalator on the way out...

    ReplyDelete
  116. Cheers BB, see you've got it covered anyway!

    I shall watch and laugh!

    ReplyDelete
  117. Evening all. First bottle of Bordeaux broached.

    @BB

    Did bitey take being called a slimy cockroach badly? Damn. I was actually trying to reinforce his self-esteem by stages.

    Cockroach, then tapeworm and perhaps sewer rat by next spring.

    ReplyDelete
  118. Spike

    I am very fond of rats! No dissing them! :o)

    ReplyDelete
  119. @BB

    Sewer rats. Not the cuddly, fluffy country ones. Am I being over ambitious in setting bitey's sights so high, BB?

    I have a dream!

    Actually, your defence of rats has reminded me of the old joke about how they've begun to use lawyers in laboratories because there are things that even rats won't do. ;-)

    ReplyDelete
  120. In fact, I have just uploaded two pix on the UT Flickr of Cory Burnout, the sweetest rat in the world! :o)

    ReplyDelete
  121. Haha!

    The lab techs get less attached to the lawyers too! :o)

    ReplyDelete
  122. BeautifulBurnout said....

    Now fuck off, there's a dear. The grown-ups are talking.

    And do the rest of your comrades have anything to say about those 67,000 women who die each year at the hands of Thai abortionists so that you and the Thai government can salve your Buddhist consciences?

    Why not answer the question rather than sounding off like one of Murdoch's ignorant Sun readers?

    ReplyDelete
  123. I have naff all to do with Thai buddhists or what their school of thought is, Bitey. They are theravadans (or to put it more rudely in buddhist terms, hinayanans). I am a mahayanan.

    Now what question was it you wanted me to answer? I don't recall anything other than bloody diatribe and smear. Ask me the question.

    ReplyDelete
  124. My dear bitey

    I have nothing at all against Chinese students - there are in fact, quite a few of them in the flats around where I live, they seem rather sweet and well mannered.

    The jibe was directed at you because I think you're a cheap, unpleasant little man who gets off on stalking people he takes against.

    ReplyDelete
  125. englishhalfwit on the student protests -

    I think that being subjected to a little discomfort and fear is good for young people. Learning to deal with it is character building and teaches resilience. As far as I know, nobody was killed or seriously injured.

    Is this the same doughty fighter-pilot who spammed UT constantly with 'quacks' because somebody said something nasty about him? The intrepid warrior who attacks all new waddya posters and accuses them of being saboteurs? The fearless defender of free speech who boasts of constantly hitting the abuse button and getting posters deleted? The man who is so fucking paranoid that he thinks his own reflection in the mirror is out to get him? The man who squeals like a stuck pig when someone suggests that he is not really a very nice person?

    Say it aint so.

    ReplyDelete
  126. Bitey

    My mum says your mum's a fuckin idiot just like her kids...and my dad's a General in the Army and he's got tanks and shit and he can blow your dad into next fuckin Thursday

    ReplyDelete
  127. Right, let's get the ball rolling before Enders.

    The brilliant Boo Radleys with I Hang Suspended.

    ReplyDelete
  128. I think that being subjected to a little piss-taking on the internet is good for sad old cunts. Learning to deal with it is character building and teaches resilience. As far as I know, nobody was killed or seriously injured...well...except this one guy who started sobbing and ranting and quacking then ran away...hoping nobody in Dibley had noticed...but they had...and now he's exposed as the embarrassment he always was..

    "Look straight ahead Kermit dear and cover your ears...one averts ones gaze when passing places like this"

    ReplyDelete
  129. Hello Sheff; thanks for the mail, that link was mint!

    ReplyDelete
  130. Dotterel said...

    I'm so tanked up on cold and flu medication (and flu itself) that I can't see straight, and even I can see that's not what BB was saying!

    So what was she saying?

    Quote from her posts where she's saying that Thai women along with all women should have the choice of whether they abort or not.

    MrsB lives in a country where she has that service on demand, and rightly so, although given the ideology of the present government, we might see that right under attack sooner rather than later.

    I hope you get better soon but from what others have reported it sounds like you'll be suffering for a few weeks.

    ReplyDelete
  131. chekhov

    I wanted to post it up on our photo gallery as its so funny but only half of it would load.

    MF

    I think that being subjected to a little piss-taking on the internet is good for sad old cunts. Learning to deal with it is character building and teaches resilience.

    Quite agree. Of course those of us who've been to boarding school or done a stint in the military do have an unfair advantage - having got used to it at an early age. Except curiously enough, for Brakkers.

    ReplyDelete
  132. Dear Ms Thaumaturge

    Frankly, I was appalled by your reference to my supposed 'bunion'. The fact that I may have mentioned to my friend and tutor Major Bracken that I had a corn hardly gives you or anyone else carte blanche to make assumptions about other foot maladies which I may or may not have.

    Apologies if this sounds testy, but Mrs Selfmade has been especially bovine today and seems to be undergoing one of her periodic bouts of self-loathing resentment. I suppose if we are being honest it is my own fault. I have been up in the clouds in eager anticipation of some creative writing classes from the Major and, understandably, she feels a little left out, having nothing to look forward to other than tomorrow night's episode of 'Casualty' 9which promises to be a cracker, by the by). I tried to cheer her up (I bought her the Haynes Workshop manual for the Vauxhall Viva Mk 2) but to no avail and of course it is I who suffer when she is one of her moods, especially when smearing unguent on her bad knee (a sure test of her mood is whether she entreats me to smear downwards or upwards: tonight I was down to her ankle, suggesting that I will be in the spare room later).

    Yet, even allowing for this, I think that all right-minded folk will be disgusted by your sneers and what makes it worse is that, as you well know, we have in the past shared some 'special moments'.

    I await your apology.

    Frostily,

    S.M. Man

    ReplyDelete
  133. The twisting and tying up of the crisp packet thing is in order that they take up less room in the rubbish bag – according to my mum, as that’s why she’s always done it; and is why I’ve always had the twinge of a wasterel guilt for not bothering.

    BB

    I swear that they have foreseen the riots even before the ConDems were in place. I swear that is why they have been putting in reinforced walls along the pavements in Whitehall for the past three years now.

    All the legal framework is still in place to bang up as many people as they feel like for public order-related offences; all the email and cctv and ANPR tracking is in place, quite lawfully...


    Followed, most coincidently, by Sir Paul Stephenson declaring yesterday that we now have an increased risk of a terrorist threat.

    There had been a "dangerous resurgence" in the threat from Republican groups, he told security experts in London.

    And people must also be alert to right-wing extremism as well as the broader threat from al-Qaeda, he added.

    Speaking at the Royal United Services Institute, Sir Paul said: "This is undoubtedly as dangerous a time as we have seen for the UK, and UK interests abroad, since the attempted attacks on the Tiger-Tiger nightclub in London and Glasgow airport in 2007."

    "There can be no complacency."


    That is - people must be alert to government right-wing extemism, as well as the broader threat from their multi-millionaire puppet-string pullers, for whom this is a dangerous time, because of the resurgence of the threat of citizen rebellion against the wealthy’s benefit-cheating gains hidden abroad, as a result of the rest of the country being told that they must pay for the missing amounts.

    They're not too sure there whether it's al—Queda or the Republican groups, but failing either of those making a sufficient impression, no doubt some other nasty threat can be brought to our attention; showing why they definitely can’t cut back, after all, on all of the surveillance nets that have been previously and carefully set up all around us.

    While I’m expecting to be picked up as a suspect person at any time, due to going about enwrapped suspiciously in a scarves-under-hat combination all around the head and face and neck... Not perhaps the height of elegance and sophistication – although maybe alluring by it’s mystique? - (okay – maybe not) – due to attempting to survive current * freezing temperatures - however, on the plus side, it’s unlikely that I could be identified by any cctv image.

    Jen - best wishes

    ReplyDelete
  134. Bitey

    You quote the bit where I said I was supporting the Thai government anti-abortion stance.

    Oh.

    You can't.

    The problem really is that you are neither intelligent enough nor versed enough in buddhist theory to understand what I meant, so you come on here and show yourself up again by making shit up. Well done you.

    Ask me the question. Go on.

    ReplyDelete
  135. BeautifulBurnout said.....

    Damn, I had no idea you were a multi-millionaire philanthropist that travelled China at your own expense, munificently bestowing your gifts of anglo-saxon education on them out of the kindness of your little manuphage heart.

    No I'm not, but I can contribute sufficient to the business for it to pay my travel expenses, although I often don't bother to claim, as I've no need to. In part because some very happy parents want to wine and dine me as a measure of their gratitude.

    I'm sure you must experience a similar situation when you've seen off the UK Border Agency.

    ReplyDelete
  136. moonwave

    "Followed, most coincidently, by Sir Paul Stephenson declaring yesterday that we now have an increased risk of a terrorist threat. "

    It's all getting waaaay too V for Vendetta for my liking.

    I said a while ago - and I used to rant to my beloved about it - that every time there was another bit of repressive legislation about to be announced, former Met Commissioners John Stevens and Ian Blair would be on the Today programme in the morning warning us about how lucky we were that they had foiled yet another plot we would never actually hear about at all, and we should be grateful that they were protecting us.

    ReplyDelete
  137. moonwave

    "This is undoubtedly as dangerous a time as we have seen for the UK, and UK interests abroad,

    Can't remember a time when it wasn't 'dangerous' for one reason or another. It's an old trick. Keep the population sufficiently afraid and they'll be compliant and do as they're told.

    ReplyDelete
  138. "I'm sure you must experience a similar situation when you've seen off the UK Border Agency. "

    No. We have a code of conduct that doesn't allow anything that could remotely be seen as an inducement.

    But you do admit you are in business, then. So you are either paid a commission by the universities, or you are taking money off the students and/or their parents (or a combination of the two). Right?

    ReplyDelete
  139. BeautifulBurnout said.....

    Now what question was it you wanted me to answer? I don't recall anything other than bloody diatribe and smear. Ask me the question.

    The question was do you agree with abortion on demand to all women, everywhere. No conditions, no inquisitions, no questions, just on demand?

    A yes or no will do.

    ReplyDelete
  140. BB

    I look at the Chinese students who live round here and wonder if any of them are aquainted with bitey. Perhaps I should ask them.

    ReplyDelete
  141. Looks like Melissa in Epping has been eating some strange looking mushrooms.

    "It's a sorry state of affairs when people need to champion the activism of children to validate their own very dodgy credentials. These children should not be doing this, they should be stopped from doing this, this is a job for the adults. The most we should demand of the children is that they try and take full advantage of all the opportunities that society gives them. Expecting the children to fight the battles that the adults should be fighting, is frankly barbaric. For shame!"

    Sigh.

    ReplyDelete
  142. "did a long and very technical post on buddhism on the Thai buddhist abortion thread"

    Didn't know you were into buddhism, BB. Which form? I used to be a Geluk, I suppose, for quite a long time.

    ReplyDelete
  143. To be fair, BB, bitey has spent years travelling in China and SE Asia helping the less fortunate. How could he be expected to know anything about Buddhism?

    ReplyDelete
  144. Sheffpixie said.....

    I have nothing at all against Chinese students - there are in fact, quite a few of them in the flats around where I live, they seem rather sweet and well mannered.

    Of course they are. Before mine travel overseas they have lessons in etiquette, politeness, expressing gratitude and so on.

    Maybe you should come along for a lesson or two.

    ReplyDelete
  145. meerkatjie

    I've been a nichirin (japanese) buddhist for 17 years, although not in any "organised" sense for the past 7 years or so. I know a bit about Tibetan buddhism although not about the Gelug school specifically, because the Sammye Ling buddhist temple is in the village in Scotland where my mother was born, and my late great-uncle who was postmaster in the village used to take me up there quite a lot when I was a kid.

    Both yours and mine are largely based on the Lotus Sutra, though, no?

    Small world anyway! :o)

    ReplyDelete
  146. bloody hell, how many flavours of Buddhism are there?

    Reminds me of this:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gb_qHP7VaZE

    ReplyDelete
  147. monkeyfish said....

    Bitey

    My mum says your mum's a fuckin idiot just like her kids...and my dad's a General in the Army and he's got tanks and shit and he can blow your dad into next fuckin Thursday


    He'll have a job, we buried him in a woodland grave four years ago.

    ReplyDelete
  148. I don't practice anymore - I gave up any formal adherence to buddhism maybe five years ago. Yes, they're both lotus path. My teacher is in wales - my ex still goes there. He's a lovely man, a really delightful tibetan Geshe.

    Samye Ling is a lovely place. Do you by any chance know Rob Nairn, who used to study and teach there?

    We used to have a couple who had been Theravadan brethren who had left the order to marry, teaching at the Buddhist Retreat Centre in Ixopo. While there are obvious doctrinal differences, I was also often struck by the similarities. But then they had embraced the Boddhisattva ideal, which perhaps bridges some of the gaps?

    Checkov, there are loads of different forms of Buddhism - I guess just like there are many different ways of being Christian.

    In the end I just got so disenchanted with all organised religion. I took the atheism of buddhism pretty seriously anyway, so I guess it wasn't that big a step to just letting go of it all. I do still meditate. And I still take the idea of karma seriously.

    ReplyDelete
  149. My ex isn't the Geshe - the former teacher is. :-)

    ReplyDelete
  150. moonwave --nice to see you, here is the antidote to that scaremongerer Sir Paul Stephenson !

    Off to check out the log-fire in the pub, hovering around freezing here too XX

    ReplyDelete
  151. Ah yes, manners bitey. You are under the quite erroneous impression that sweary language and pricking pomposity in the context of a blog like this is 'bad manners.' That is because you have the sensibility of Hyacinth Bucket and no imagination.

    In fact its stalking that's bad manners wherever it occurs, and you, imo, are a stalker.

    ReplyDelete
  152. BeautifulBurnout said....

    But you do admit you are in business, then. So you are either paid a commission by the universities, or you are taking money off the students and/or their parents (or a combination of the two). Right?

    Of course the business makes a profit and it's partners and employees are well paid, but I take nothing other than my expenses. And as I said before, often I don't bother as having people who'll show me the parts of China that you'd give your right arm to visit, for me that's sufficient reward.

    ReplyDelete
  153. Dear Mr B.T. Hand

    As a humble selfmade man I don't purport to understand what in the name of jumping geronimo you are going on about, although I am sure it is very interesting.

    But a lifetime at the coalface of the import-export business has taught me how to judge the other fella and I'm bound to conclude that you are a grade 1, first class, alpha fruitcake.

    Far be it from me to offer advice, but would you not be much wiser simply to confine yourself to pulling the wings off insects and listening to the voice of God through your radiogram?

    Yours in alarm

    SelfmadeMan
    PS One doesn't wish to appear insensitive, but I am trying to achieve membership of the local Rotary Club, and it would aid be greatly to be able to produce some sort of freak for the Christmas show. Might I prevail upon you to be that freak? It would not require you to step very far out of character although if you could perhaps tone down the more peculiar parts of your act that would help. I'll supply the costume, so no need to worry on that score.

    ReplyDelete
  154. Meerkatjie

    Ah, cool!

    I don't know Rob Nairn, no, but I don't really know anyone at Samye Ling now - although we still visit when we go up there.

    My beloved is still very engaged in his practice, but I let it fall by the wayside. I mostly do what I call "fire-engine chanting" when something really shit happens and I need to get through it, but I don't chant all that much these days.

    And yes, once you fully understand karma through years of pratice and study, even if you decide to more or less chuck in the towel, it is as hard to disregard it as it is to suddenly decide you are going to disregard the law of gravity! I know exactly what you mean! :o)

    I still describe myself as a buddhist because I still adhere to the philosophy as I understand it, even if I don't practice and study much these days, and try to live my life in accordance with it as best I can.

    But it is not something you can "do" to other people. It is such a personal thing, and you are the only one that can decide to go down that path, and how you go about it. I think that's what I like most about it.

    ReplyDelete
  155. Surecate
    GIYUS is the generic term for the "...posed the cynic" guy who turns up on waddya threads with his new world order tinfoil-hattery. One of his first nicks was GIYUS AND TROLLS - GIYUS is apparently an acronym for Give Israel Your United Support.

    He is hilarious but he does come out with some really seriously interesting stuff at times. But it is guaranteed that all his posts will be zapped within the hour because he - like certain others I could mention - has had so many nicks now, and posts in such an inimitable style that he is immediately recognised and zapped.

    ReplyDelete
  156. Ah, I see. He's often referred to but I couldn't attach the acronym to a user name.

    ReplyDelete
  157. Bitey: "If you didn't conspire to have posters banned RapidE, it might be somewhat different."

    Fuck me Bitey, I must have missed that one. When was this then?

    Damn, getting people banned without trying or even knowing about it. I'm good. Re-e-e-e-al good.

    ReplyDelete
  158. Dear Mr Selfmade

    Once again, I cannot fail to be tickled by your missive to our manuphage friend.

    Do give my regards to Mrs Selfmade. I understand the price of swarfega may be going up sharply in the new budget, so I sincerely hope she has stocked up in anticipation.

    Yours sincerely,

    Mrs Burnout, B, LLB(Hons.)

    ReplyDelete
  159. BeautifulBurnout said....

    BeautifulBurnout said...Bitey
    Yes.


    In which case my apologies.

    But from your post on CiF I'd never have realised you were so unequivocal about your husband's support for abortion on demand.

    That's the husband "who is far wiser than I am", who presumably gave you the words - "liberal abortion laws are not compatible with Buddhism is not correct because there is no rule in Buddhism that says "thou shalt not have an abortion" - everything is "conditioned" - no event, including an abortion, happens in isolation."

    Not sure that this means ""abortion on demand", but if it does, please pass on my apologies to him as well for my misunderstanding.

    ReplyDelete
  160. RapidEddie

    You've obviously mastered subconscious psychic projection! You star! :o)

    ReplyDelete
  161. It means what it says, Bitey. There are no ten commandments in buddhism, only cause and effect.

    And I will not spend the 15 or 20 hours it would take to try and explain that to you either. If you are genuinely interested, read a book about it.

    In any event, I would much rather you apologised for implying my husband was a paedophile the other day, Bitey. That is an apology I would be delighted to pass on to him.

    ReplyDelete
  162. Giyus's ID changes several times a session, but his posts are instantly recognisable with their chuckled/posed the cynic/conspiracy grandma, mentions of the house spam, the sheeple, etc., etc.

    ReplyDelete
  163. The problem for Natalie is that she thinks she has the Seaton-CiF formula down pat. Identity politics schtick, some ra-ra New Labour stuff from the Toynbee/Ashley/Milne Axis and bob's your uncle.

    Throw in a bloated up CiF America and grow the European stuff a bit and traffic rises exponentially. Unfortunately, it doesn't work like that. Natalie - and I suspect Jess - think that it's enough to just have feminist/minorities/LGBT articles and people will flock to them. But if you look at the material that built the Seaton Empire, it was the contentious stuff that stirred the pot. The BindBeaBidi rad fem chewing of the furniture.

    The Natalie version is dull, MoR fare. It's not the subject matter that sparks debate, it's the expression of it (as our friend here would say: Duh....) You need polemic firebombs. The ideal mixture for maximum participation is rabidly partisan articles mixed in with zero quality control. The minute you read Gogarty's Grand Tour, you can smell the blood in the air. Most anything by Tanya Gold or Bea Campbell, you know there's a kicking around the corner.

    At the moment, it's the sound of a very, very, very boring proverbial North London dinner party going on.

    ReplyDelete
  164. My dear Mrs Burnout

    Well, I did give your regards to Mrs Selfmade but I'm afraid that she reacted in a rather petit-bourgeois manner, imagining that there was 'something going on between us'. Your use of the word 'tickling' only added to her suspicions so of course I could hardly deny it and I'm afraid that she winkled out of me not only the hotel bills but the photographs too. Some ugly scenes ensued which it would hardly be fitting in what is, in effect, a family forum to recount.

    I can reassure you on one point, however: our stocks of swarfega are sufficient to see out any crisis of supply and perhaps even our entire lives. Yet what so discommodes Mrs Selfmade is that my need for lubrication is so diminished just by contemplation of your name. I appreciate that this may seem indelicate but I know that you young folk are less hidebound than your elders.

    Yours affectionately

    SelfmadeMan BA (University of Life, formerly Life Polytechnic)

    ReplyDelete
  165. Sheffpixie said....

    Ah yes, manners bitey. You are under the quite erroneous impression that sweary language and pricking pomposity in the context of a blog like this is 'bad manners.' That is because you have the sensibility of Hyacinth Bucket and no imagination.

    No pixie, what is bad manners is spitting your fish bones and anything else that's in your mouth that you don't want to swallow, on the floor. This is quite usual behaviour in the part of China where live, which is why the restaurants all have tiled floors. It's quite an interesting social phenomenon to do with not touching anything you eat - hence the use of chop sticks. Quite fascinating, but not something you'd appreciate in your home I'm sure.

    That's the spitting of course, not the utensils.

    ReplyDelete
  166. Hi All

    Meerkatjie, you want snow? Come and get it please, we've had 20 cm in the last day or so. Now it's raining so a sloppy mess indeed.

    Just read the threads from the last few days. Jen, that's a terrible thing. You and your family take good care of yourselves.

    Bitey, had you bothered to read a few more comments down, it would have been clear that I did protest to Martyn about that foul, despicable post on the night in question. I would not hesitate to pull up anyone else for that kind of hateful shit.

    ReplyDelete
  167. Dear MrSelfmade

    Good grief! Nobody was meant to see the photos! Polaroids are just so very Profumo too, are they not? Although the one of you sat back to front on the chair - all grainy black and white and your grey locks flowing sans chapeau, was a tad risque by even modern standards.

    I do hope you have reassured Mrs Selfmade that a moment's passion in the shadow of Waterloo East could not possibly compare to the life-time of married bliss you have enjoyed with her?

    (She won't be sending those photos to Mr Burnout will she?)

    Yours anxiously

    Mrs Burnout, B, LLB (DisHons)

    ReplyDelete
  168. RapidEddie.

    Interesting summing up of Cif. Although why do you assume Cif's minor administrators like Seaton and Hanman are totemic string pullers and we must be in thrall to heir Stalinesque personality cults? Cif evolved naturally from the Graun and will still be expected to be ideologically similar to the Graun's editorial policy. This includes the good bits like in depth reporting and exposes where other news outlets refuse to report and the bad bits like 'minority X doesn't do activity Y, this is discrimination'.

    I too cringe at the 'North London dinner party' articles sometimes, but cif is still the widest reaching and varied resource on the web, allowing debate from all angles.

    ReplyDelete
  169. Dear MrsBB

    Worry not! I have bought Mrs Selfmade off with the latest Dyson. Her glee at seeing the attachments put me in mind of our honeymoon.

    I would not, however, quite describe our years together as 'married bliss' and as I think I told you when we met there are some things which Mrs Selfmade regards as perverted! I can only thank you for showing me the less inhibited approach of the modern young lady (and one can only envy Mr Burnout!)

    And be assured, I will keep safe the picture you gave me of yourself disported in scanties.

    Your very dear friend

    S.

    ReplyDelete
  170. SelfmadeMan....

    I'm so disappointed not to have received a letter from you but given the demand on your time, I can quite understand. Although it's an indication of how far standards have fallen in the pernicious and somewhat sad society, as far as good manners are concerned, in which we now live.

    And unlike you there's nothing humble about me, quite the contrary. At a time when students are rightly protesting about being asked to pay the economic rate for their higher education, I'm delighted to have contributed, through my import business, large amounts in fees and spending by overseas students who've come to the UK to study. Of course I suspects it's nothing compared to your imports from Morocco, carpets were they, or something more exotic?

    And SelfmadeMan, your membership of the Weston-super-Mare Rotary Club was very well documented on CiF before your unfortunate banning, so why would you now be trying to achieve membership of that reactionary organisation? Short term memory problems?

    If there's a freak needed for your Xmas show, I wish I could oblige, but sadly I'm otherwise engaged with meeting students arriving in the UK to take advantage of the education that you, sadly missed out on.

    ReplyDelete
  171. Ah I see. Bitethehand, you're an agent for a UK university?

    ReplyDelete
  172. "He'll have a job, we buried him in a woodland grave four years ago."

    OK...I'll tell him to turn the tanks around...sorry about the fence...and the patio

    Am I meant to feel guilty now Bitehard?..sorry but I don't..the jibe was more an allusion to the primary playground nature of your position...as it happens, my dad was never 'boss of the Army'...why does a grown man quote..or rather, why does he construct a fictitious opinion which he then attributes to...his mother...what purpose does that serve?...does it somehow strengthen the force of your point?..which on closer examination isn't a point at all...it's an imaginary complaint about a particularly fuckin perverse reading of a comment which contains no conceivable resemblance to the meaning you ascribe to it. You're picking fights with yourself...then using your mother to arbitrate..you're a complete fuck-up.

    The word 'woodland' intrigues me though. Remove it and we have...

    "He'll have a job, we buried him in a grave four years ago."

    ...which renders "in a grave" redundant...what impression were you hoping to impart with 'woodland'?...are you from a particularly eco-conscious and spiritual background?

    ReplyDelete
  173. RapidEddie said...

    Fuck me Bitey, I must have missed that one. When was this then?

    How about this:

    RapidEddie said...
    I'm going to accuse the Duckhead of being Bitey, just so Bitey can get his count of UT baseless slurs upon him up to 401.

    I'd be fascinated if Duckhead/Bitey/Job would come on here to explain his cataloguing/cross referencing system for exhuming comments and counting grievances.


    So why link me with Job if you didn't want to point out the Job and Bitethehand were one and the same?

    And of course you're looking rather silly now suggesting that I was the also the quack poster.

    ReplyDelete
  174. Evening all


    Jen

    Was thinking about you earlier .Hope you're bearing up as best you can.x

    Boudican

    You've always been a totally sound bloke for as long as i've known you.You don't need to justify yourself to that pox-ridden dung-heap called Bitey.

    ReplyDelete
  175. My memory must be playing tricks

    I could have sworn that RapidEddie didn't say you were the quack poster, but that you were the poster on crack...

    ReplyDelete
  176. BeautifulBurnout said...

    In any event, I would much rather you apologised for implying my husband was a paedophile the other day, Bitey.

    Not sure what you're referring to but could it be this?

    Unlike you MrsB who's quite prepared to put the most personal details of her son and husband on the internet, in order to boost your own popularity with the lapdogs that follow your skirt hems, I go out of my way to ensure that those who are close to me are at as little risk as possible from the hatred and threats of violence some of my posts generate.

    If it's any comfort to you I was alluding to his Buddhism, about which you've waxed lyrical on a couple of occasions. Other than that I've no idea what he gets up to in his own time as until tonight you've not told us.

    So I'm glad he's not.

    Really.

    ReplyDelete
  177. "And of course you're looking rather silly now suggesting that I was the also the quack poster"

    Nobody said you were the duckposter...we always knew it was your mam.

    ReplyDelete
  178. You know the bit I mean, bitey. The bit that came after that paragraph. However, unlike you, I really cannot be arsed to trawl back through all your inane witterings to find it right now.

    And I don't wax lyrical. I share stuff on here with my friends. Although since last year I have stopped doing it so much, now I know you for the person you are.

    ReplyDelete
  179. Oh Bitey Bitey Bitey. These threats of violence are non existent, we don't know who you are or anything about your life apart from your business in China (although some people might be able to use their ace internet searching details to dig up on you).

    But you admitted on one of your user handles to actually seeing BB in a courtroom, which is far more questionable and creepy than someone telling you to fuck off.

    ReplyDelete
  180. I find that I have a sad lack of knowledge concerning the different flavours of buddhism - I'd presumed it was all along the lines of promoting, from within, calmer and more reasonable thoughts and actions.

    Continuing to presume that that is something like the case, I can only say that there are comments upon the subject which display a lack of vocation for buddhism.

    BB

    ...every time there was another bit of repressive legislation about to be announced, former Met Commissioners John Stevens and Ian Blair would be on the Today programme in the morning warning us about how lucky we were that they had foiled yet another plot we would never actually hear about at all, and we should be grateful that they were protecting us.

    Protecting us from... us?
    V for Vendetta indeed, or - Vile - Venomous - Vindictive ~

    Of course such dangers do exist, but, as Dave from France illustrates, focused intelligence work is what gets the results, as has always been the case. The reality is that you're hugely more likely to die or be injured from any of the many usual accidents of life.

    In the same way, they're now saying that the ISPs need to keep logged all of our communications because of - if not terrorism, then let's try for paedophilia; as that's another subject which gets people really worked up - well, if it helps stops those nasties, then that's okay.

    Only it doesn't, as the agencies involved say that they haven't caught people through their internet searches, but through infiltrating their networks. Same with terrorists - intelligent detective work every time. After all, it would be a really dumb terrorist who use email in a way where it would be obvious what they were doing.

    I must now fly off into the night, as is my custom at this time - they still believe that it's to stay with my old friend along the road - although, considering the temperatures... I cannot, anyway, compete with SelfmadeMan, although please note the Bsc Hons, and some interesting variations on the Uni of Life front...

    my dark light

    Sheff

    Keep the population sufficiently afraid and they'll be compliant and do as they're told.

    Until they become more afraid of what's happening to them for real.

    ReplyDelete
  181. Charles

    I think Hank did threaten to duff him up if he ever saw him, one time.

    I can't say I blamed him either.

    ReplyDelete
  182. Boudican said...

    Bitey, had you bothered to read a few more comments down, it would have been clear that I did protest to Martyn about that foul, despicable post on the night in question. I would not hesitate to pull up anyone else for that kind of hateful shit.

    Not sure what you're referring to here but I wasn't referring to MartyninEurope's turn at being Mr Abusive.

    Expand and I'll respond.

    ReplyDelete
  183. Just posted to Paul and poof. Would one of the admins please unbin it. Thanks, bye for now.

    ReplyDelete
  184. Sheesh, can't go yet can I? Cutting into my drinking time too. Bitey, I'm referring to your post of Nov. 25 @ 7:37.

    ReplyDelete
  185. Hmmm. The only thing in the spam box was one from moonwave (which I have just released.)

    Did the dog eat yours, Boudican? :o)

    ReplyDelete
  186. Surecate said...

    Ah I see. Bitethehand, you're an agent for a UK university?

    Sadly not.

    I value my independence too much to be anyone's agent, indeed I get quite severe with people who refer to me as such.

    I'm an education consultant and some institutions do pay for my expertise, such as it is, but I insist that our students come first. And if they insist on applying to Princeton or Boston College, or UCL or Imperial, none of which pay any commission, then I'll do my best and if the student's academic performance is good enough, I'll get them a place. If they don't and they want another try, they lower their sights a little. And if I don't get them a place they want to accept, they pay nothing.

    It's not rocket science. Well apart from the aeronautical engineering students.

    ReplyDelete
  187. Insanely good result for both Bru and Kiz today. Bru established her EU-imbecile credentials well enough, but then Kiz rocks up with her first "political" outing of the year - defending illegal music file sharing as a way of sticking it to the man.

    Go girls. You're way ahead of everything we know.

    Heh.

    ReplyDelete
  188. Hello all, except one. anon, that cat v the printer clip was very good medicine for another of the lurgy-struck, thanks very much.

    ReplyDelete
  189. "I value my independence too much to be anyone's agent.."

    except, of course, the voice in my head...jesus wept

    ReplyDelete