Monday, 16 October 2017

Passchendaele Revisited

This week marks the 100th anniversary of the end of the battle of Passchendaele (3rd Ypres). Ostensibly, the objective of the battle was to reach the Belgium coast. But it soon became apparent to  British generals that this objective was beyond reach. From then on the battle would become one of attrition.

For the British: A terrible and largely pointless battle that achieved little, apart from killing Germans. A relentlessly grim conflict that defines the concept of attrition; fighting for the sole purpose of killing enemy soldiers and hoping that your losses do not outstrip theirs. Is there anything more terrible than the doctrine of attrition? Seeing men as mere counters to be erased from the board. Predictably, the generals who devised such a strategy were divorced from the terrors and tragedy of battle.

To mark this anniversary I’ve decided to rehash an old post.    




Read and weep

The Third Battle of Ypres in the summer of 1917 (Passchendaele), together with the battle of the Somme is synonymous, at least in British eyes, with the futility and mass slaughter of the First World War, and in my opinion, rightly so.

General Haig, the commander of the British forces had formed a picture in his mind. He envisioned a German army close to defeat, battered by the Somme offensive of the preceding summer. One last push to the Belgium coast and the German army would be rolled up from the north. To achieve this end he planned a grand summer offensive in 1917 and chose Flanders as the field of operation. On the map Flanders seemed the ideal place for a major British offensive. A gain of just 30 miles would take the British to the Belgium ports of Ostend and Zeebrugge. The problem was that his viewpoint was not rooted in military reality. Perhaps it was possible to reach the coast if the German army was no longer a coherent entity. But this was certainly not the case in 1917. Indeed, during the battle the Germans felt confident enough to transfer troops from the front line for operations elsewhere.

Lloyd George, the British Prime Minister, was against the offensive from the first and predicted another 'slaughter fest' without any tangible result. Haig was adamant that Ostend and other channel ports could be reached in the first wave of the offensive. He emphasised the parlous state of a Germany army in disarray and imminent collapse. When Lloyd George visited the Western Front during the battle, Haig removed all the robust looking Germans from the prisoner of war cages to give the impression that the Germans were drawing on their last reserves of man power. Nothing could be further from the truth.

The French allies did not support an offensive here, nor did any of the other British Generals. As one French General so presciently (not a real word) stated: "You can't fight both Boche and boue" (Germans and mud). In fact it was the French army that was close to collapse. The German attack on Verdun in 1916 and General Nivelle's disastrous offensive in early 1917 had brought the French army to mutiny. The army would hold the line but further offensive action was denied to them. The last thing the French wanted was the British army to be ground down in the same way. It would be better to stand on the defensive in 1917 and await for the Americans and tanks for an offensive in 1918.

As predicted, the battlefield became a morass fuelled by summer and autumn rains. All that was needed was the ever present artillery fire to plough and churn the land into a mud/blood bath. Furthermore, in the north the Belgians had destroyed the dykes thus letting in the sea. On this flank the Germans were secure. They had also built strong defences in depth in front of the British trenches. The high water table in the area ensured that the forth coming battle would turn into a duck-walk rather than Haig's imaginary cake-walk.

The offensive was heralded by the obligatory drum fire of artillery extended over several days. The battle began on the 31st July 1917. By the end of the first day it was clear to the British High Command that the offensive had failed. With advances of no more than half a mile the main German line was nowhere breached. Men, tanks and artillery simply sank and disappeared in the deep cloying mud. With no breakthrough in sight, Haig changed his objectives. No longer would the offensive result in the capture of Ostend and Zeebrugge. Instead the battle would become one of attrition with the only purpose of killing Germans. It should be remembered that the concept of attrition is always a two way process. The battle rumbled on for a further three months before being called off.

And so for the butcher’s bill: British casualties- 300,000; German casualties- 200,000. Haig argued that the Germans had suffered severely and planned a further offensive in the spring of 1918 which would bring the Germans to their knees. Again Haig was wrong. The Germans had more than enough men left to launch their own formidable spring offensive of 1918.

The effect on the British army was more subtle. As one British army Sergeant sensibly put it: “We will beat them but not before they break our hearts”. If innocence had been lost on the Somme, so enthusiasm had been lost at Passchendaele. It was replaced by grim determination and a stark professionalism to get the job done, but at what cost?

There is nothing glorious about war except the men in it


Thursday, 12 October 2017

Tats out for the lads

Dick Head

I thought I'd do another 'silly post' before I slip into another serious one. I'm not sure what the sensible post will be about, yet. But be assured, it will be very sensible.

When young and drunk tis very tempting to get a tattoo. Sadly, you will likely regret the decision in the cold harsh light of day. I'm not festooned with tats, myself- a couple of small motifs, tastefully done. However, back in the 60s and 70s, tattoos, especially on the hands, neck, and face marked you out as a lesser breed; an outcast from normal polite society. A distinction reserved for sailors and bar room brawlers. 
Today, things have changed. Respectable individuals are adorned, nay festooned with permanent ink; although the sanction and restriction with regard to the hands, neck and especially the face, remain. Even my daughter has a couple of small tattoos: one on her ankle, t'other on her shoulder. 

Not everyone possesses poise, grace, taste or even a spell checker. Anyways, check out this motley crew of misfits and fuckwits. Some folk really do need to be strangled at birth.    



Now, this looks like a salty dude. How more menacing can you get? Not content at desecrating his features he goes on to have one eyeball tattooed black. Predictably enough he appears to be wearing prison garb. Let's hope he's doing 50 to life. 



I'm guessing this fella ain't no Chartered Accountant. With such a provocative tattoo I'm thinking this man finds it difficult to obtain gainful employment, especially in the service industry: "Would like fucking fries with that, you cunt?" Another poor lost soul destined to remain on the margins of a just and judging society. An angry young man who finds the legit world baffling and unfriendly. For such a character, gaol is really his only fiend.



Hey, this man is ice cool, 'Da Iceman'. Guess how I know? Cos tis displayed on the canvas of his torso with gay abandon. The adornment of the skulls is telling. Skulls are super cool and this man displays at least five, so by implication, he must be super cool. Either that or he's an inadequate twat with a knuckle dragging low IQ and possessing  a need to show off his mind numbing stupidity. I bet he takes his shirt off at every available opportunity. If you have to broadcast that you are cool, then you ain't.



I have to agree with the sentiment but not the spelling. Is this supposed to be irony or is the recipient mind bogglingly dim? I suspect the latter.





Michael Jackson never looked so good. 'He's bad, he's bad'......The tattoo 'artist' ain't too good at this drawing thingy, either. Perhaps Michael Jackson did actually look like this at the end- one too many facelifts/nose jobs/skin whitening (sorry, no skin whitening. He suffered from a medical condition called vitiligo, allegedly).





Take a look at this fine specimen of manhood/humanity? As we can see he's a rampant ladies man. All those fine hos and bitches will be lining up to date this fine, sensitive and profoundly stupid young man. Could these be prison tattoos? I think so. I'd like to think that no legit tattoo salon would be responsible for this insanity. Putting on my all-seeing psychic hat on: I prophesise a life of petty crime and long spells of incarceration. No bitches there my fiend, just Bubba from C wing. Take care and don't slip in the shower.


Care and attention combined with a modicum of due diligence would have saved this girl from a lifelong of embarrassment and attention from men with a preoccupation with anal proclivities. Ana, take my advice and be generous with the lube. Although I suspect she will be wearing her hair down and flowing in order to protect her modesty and virtue.


This tattoo reminds me of a story, perhaps apocryphal, I was once told many years ago. Apparently, a young fella was holidaying in Hong Kong and thought it a good idea to get a tattoo on his arm in Chinese script. He chose a suitably uplifting Chinese proverb and had said tattoo proclaimed in bold Cantonese on his arm. Months later back in England he had occasion to visit the local Chinese restaurant with a few of his mates. As he was tucking into his sweet and sour pork balls he couldn't help but notice that the Chinese waitress could hardly suppress a giggle when she passed his table. Intrigued, our intrepid fella asked the young girl what the hilarity was about. The girl seemed reluctant to reveal the nature of her mirth. But our hero pressed on and eventually, she told him that his tattoo, in Cantonese read: 'At the end of the day, this is a very ugly boy'.



And finally. At the end of the day, these are very ugly babies. And very dysmorphic as well. We shouldn't be too surprised when we peruse the kid's names: Talanne, Janner, Alli and Teeganne. No shit, say I. Expect a visit from the child protection department and hefty gaol sentences for the parents for violating the universal law of good taste and for committing crass asinine stupidity. Furthermore, Prof Mugumbo and I found a clear and profound correlation between IQ and shite names. Check out this fundamental groundbreaking research, here and here.

Enough for now. A sane man can only take so much. And I have a tenuous grip on sanity at the best of times. 


Saturday, 7 October 2017

Flaxen, abducted by aliens, again!

Oh fuck, didn't we anally probe Flaxen, last week?


I awoke late and wandered out of my bedroom to my well appointed and expansive/expensive deck, bedecked and regaled in a tawdry dressing gown. I greedily drew breath and was instantly rewarded with the olfactory delights of an Australasian spring; a mixture of new mown hay, tinged with the heady perfume of wildflowers, with a hint of warm dog shit.

What should I do today? I could continue my autobiography; perhaps I'll teeter down to the 'Old Folks Home' and refresh the inmates with daring do stories concerning times past. A simple world filled with chiselled jawed men of adventure and coquettish ladies festooned with bustles, ochre, and ringlets. Mayhap, I could take a walk along the coast road, watching the Pacific breakers play fume and spray and deposit seaborne detritus on a wind-scoured shore. I closed my china-blue eyes, pursed my perfectly formed and succulent lips and reflected, for but a moment..... Then revelation insinuated and grasped my inner being and related in no uncertain terms: 'Why not drink two bottles of cheap vodka and see what the day may bring?' Excellent counsel, I thought, and so I began the day by throwing myself into this worthy project, with gusto

After several belts, I started to see the world in a different light. All the world's major problems were laid out in sumptuous array in my whip-sharp brain. In turn, each problem was examined, laid bare and solved as if in a thrice. As I neared the last of the first bottle I began to sing a bawdy old sea shanty which I had learned at my father's knee. I suddenly became still, nay solemn. As if in a rush, the problems of a needy world descended upon my neatly coiffured head. Sharp featured furies were unleashed and lashed my wits with a thousand barbs. My morosity (not a real word ) held no bounds and I descended into a deep moribund pit of despair, self-pity, and despond. Before uncapping the second bottle, I thought it wise to open and drain to the end, a small bottle of baby sham. Twas, my undoing, but read some more and be aghast.     

The second bottle held no new terrors. As I drained the last I noticed a strange creeping numbness assailing my every fibre and within my very marrow. The significance of this malady only became clear after certain pertinent events had transpired. Hmmm, I thought, I do believe I have half a bottle of crème de menthe left over from the Vicar's tea party, last Eastertide. Wouldn't it be a good idea to cleanse my palate with a mint flavoured liqueur? As I reached for the rime encrusted bottle my world suddenly became a rotating demon. My wits seemed strangely befuddled and the room did spin like a demented Dervish on acid. With trepidation and dread, I recognised this strange phenomenon for what it was- I was about to be abducted by anal probing aliens, again! The last occasion was during the Christmas party. I remember as if it was last week (it was last week). I had just consumed: 12 shots of Jack Daniels; 15 glasses of the finest brandy; a magnum of champagne and a single baby sham. After the baby sham, my senses were robbed by an ethereal alien cosmic force. I can only surmise that I was taken aboard an alien spaceship and viciously anally probed- this would account for the subsequent and unsightly stains permeating my underwear. After they had obtained all the information that can only be obtained by anal probing, they deposited my spent and wasted body on a park bench. When I awoke I was totally naked and my head pounded with a ferocity as if a dozen Frenchmen had taken up residence there. And so it was to be this time. Next day I awoke on the same park bench, totally naked. But this time my tumescent member was circumscribed with a neat pink ribbon, tastefully attired. Again my head was quenched/drenched in pain; damn those alien cosmic beams! They had not only festooned my racked body with a sore arse (due, no doubt, to excessive anal probing) but my head did ache abominably. Damn Aliens! Can't you leave a pert and perfectly formed Englishman alone when there are so many Americans hereabouts willing to comply with the deepest and most painful anal probing?        

I recognised the connection. I will never drink baby sham, again.

Here is the news: 3.7 million Americans believe they have been abducted by Aliens/Xenomorphs.

I am a sinner, but I rest my case and sore arse (arse) on a rubber doughnut.






Artist impression of the anal probing

Wednesday, 4 October 2017

The English Longbow



Is there anything more iconic than the English longbow? A weapon responsible for sending more Johnny Frenchmen off to an early grave until the Germans came along with the machine gun in 1914. The origin of the longbow is lost in the annals of time. However, representations of the weapon have been dated at 50,000 years.

The famous English longbow was assimilated from the Welsh during King Edward's  campaign in Wales in the late 13th century. The Welsh used witch elm; a wonderfully twisted and knotty wood. The English war bow favoured the use of yew, but not English yew. During the late middle-ages, most of the yew used for English war bows was imported from Alpine districts in Spain and Italy.

The English longbow is a deceptively simple weapon. The bow is made from a single piece of yew. The log is cut in a certain way so that it contains both the newer, springy, sapwood and the older and dense heartwood. Both these woods are incorporated in the resultant bow stave. When shaped to form the classic 'D' shaped bow, the sapwood is present on the outside (confusingly called, back of the bow) and the heartwood is on the inside (belly). Thus the elastic sapwood bends easily and snaps back when the bowstring is loosed. The heartwood resists compression and enhances the speed and power of the bow. The English war bow represents a natural composite and therefore obtains the best that is possible from a single stave of yew.

It is to be noted that I'll use the term, English longbow interchangeably with war bow. Strictly speaking, a war bow is a bow with a draw weight of at least 80 lbs. That is the weight required to draw the bowstring to its maximum length, usually between 28 to 32 inches.

The English war bow found fame during the hundred years war between the English and French (1337 - 1453). The worth of the English war bow is written in history and the battles of Crecy, Poitiers, and Agincourt resonate down the ages. Indeed, the introduction of the English longbow was the driving force in the development of more effective armour. A bow of draw weight of 80lbs may have been effective against French mail and plate armour in 1337, but as armour technology advanced, the draw weight of the bow increased accordingly. By the end of the hundred years war, the draw weight of the English war bow was in the realm of 180 lbs. The French in response developed ballistic shaped armour and the best quality face hardened steel. The armour of the mid 15th century was a miracle in engineering and very resistive to penetrating projectiles.

There is much debate about whether the war bow and armour piercing arrow of the late middle ages were effective against sophisticated plate armour. This is not a simple question and I don't have space here to put forth the elements of the debate. I have added a link to a video, by Matt Easton, at the end of this article which deals with this most vexed of problems. Matt makes some interesting observations and deductions based on available evidence. As Matt eloquently illustrates, the question generates a lot of passion. In the one camp, there are English archery enthusiasts who are keen to exalt the longbow as the ultimate knight killing machine. On the other hand, there are those who are beguiled by medieval armour and perhaps romantic chivalry who consider, late armour at least, invulnerable against the heavy war bow. Each side will cite evidence in favour of their biased point of view. There are YouTube videos showing arrows slicing through plate armour and there are those showing arrows bouncing off breastplates at almost point blank range. Anyway, watch Matt's video to obtain a balanced view of the debate.

It needs to be borne in mind that well-armoured knights were only a small portion of a medieval army. Most of the retinue, although encased in some form of armour, would have been a lot less protected than knights. A suit of well-made tailored armour was extremely expensive and only the very wealthy minority could afford top quality armour. A fine panoply would be in the region of paying for a top of the line Lamborghini sports car in today's money. Care should be noted: it is often very difficult to make direct economic comparisons between a medieval and a modern economy. Needless to say, good late medieval armour would have been very expensive. The common soldiery would have had some protection. Generally, at least, they would have worn a gambeson, a thick jacket fashioned from layers of linen and or wool. Many would have worn plate armour of some form, often of poor quality. But the plate would have only protected the torso leaving arms and legs highly vulnerable to arrow storms. Nearly all soldiers would have worn a metal helmet. However, in contrast to their chivalrous knightly cousins, the helmets would have been open affording little or no protection to the face and neck. Horses would have been exquisitely vulnerable. A large and mostly unarmoured target would have been an easy mark for men trained to hit a man sized target at a hundred paces. Some nobility may have utilised some form of horse armour, although, by necessity, coverage would be nowhere near complete. Once unhorsed a knight would likely be dazed by the fall from full gallop and thus easily dispatched by bowmen breaking ranks and dispatching the nobility with a heavy mattock to the helmet or a stab with a fine pointed blade to gaps in the plate or the vulnerable groin and armpit. It is to be remembered, an arrow didn't have to kill a man to render him 'hors de combat'. Any arrow wound would effectively remove the soldier from the combat. 

The English longbow has attracted more than its fair share of mystique and folklore, especially in English speaking countries. Regardless of point of view, there is little doubt that the English war bow had a powerful influence over medieval warfare and the French, in particular, had great cause to fear this weapon over any other.

As an aside, I have just purchased an English longbow and a primitive flat bow from a company called 'Flagella Dei'. Both bows are made from a single stave of osage orange and pull 60lbs at 29 inches. It would have been preferable if I'd purchased a bow made from yew, but good quality yew staves are extremely expensive. Anyway, once the bows arrive I'll keep my spellbound reader updated as to my experience and handling of these beautiful bows.    


         



Thursday, 28 September 2017

Politically Correct Shite


Apparently, we are not allowed to say 'blackboard' any more. The politically correct alternative is 'chalkboard'. What is wrong with the word, blackboard? It describes the item very well and I'm at a loss to why it should be considered offensive. Frankly, I'm appalled by the word 'chalk' as it refers to a racial group deficient in melanin; consequently, I find the word 'chalk' highly offensive. From henceforward, in order that my sensitive sensibilities are not trampled upon, I insist that the aforesaid racially charged item should be referred to as: melanin impaired; challenged; deficient; absent; bereft; constrained; unapparent; indiscernible; unobservable; unperceived; amelanin; imperceptible; unnapparent, board. Please choose the phrase that gives the least offense, to everyone. If someone intrudes and challenges your narrow, but still valued view of the world, find a safe space, sit down, take a deep breath and think pure calming thoughts. Or better still hang round with tofu eating, vegan, gender fluid feminists and chant ohmmmmmmmaaaaaarse until your welfare cheque arrives.  

Let's be honest, most of the PC crap originates from 'right on', liberal left, arts Professors and their hoodwinked student lackeys. As always, they are the vocal, whingeing minority. Most folk consider politically correct utterances divisive jargon and an affront to free speech and commonsense. It makes my piss boil and not because I've set alight to my underpants, again.
  
Read on and weep........  





What's the matter with photon depleted or photon disenfranchised?  Why have a perfectly good descriptive phrase, 'black outs' when you  can introduce ambiguity and absurdity. 





PC bollocks and organic veganism- who would think there would be a connection: 'Let them eat meat'. If you look carefully you can see that the 'ginger bread figure' on the right is testicular enhanced. And surely, the word 'ginger' is offensive to rangas, everywhere.




Note the diversity of hues belonging to the disembodied hands. But if you look carefully you will see a glaring act of omission. I find this sequence racist and an affront to the law of sequence continuity. All races are represented except white Caucasian. The hands in panels 3 and 5 obviously belong to Orientals (are we allowed to use the word Oriental, these days? (I've only recently stopped saying 'Paki'). My hands are Lilly white- where is my representation?  I'm feeling oppressed, undervalued and highly offended. I'm off to riot, loot and burn stuff until my rights as a: bipedal humanoid, cis-gender, patriarchal, Caucasian, stature elongated, economically enfranchised, follicular enriched, hypo-pigmented, finely aged, knowledge accomplished, burgherdom status is respected forthwith (and hitherto, just for good measure).




Gender neutral marshmallow snow being??? Tell me this is a spoof or have we, as a society, descended, nay slithered into the pit where the light of reason shineth, not at all (aka augmented aphotonic, epistemologically depleted, subterranean environment).


A ray of sanity interveneth.......

Just to redress the balance.








Dat's more like it.

Thursday, 21 September 2017

NOT ABOUT THE NHS



I can't whinge about the NHS anymore as I've migrated to New Zealand. The health system in NZ is modelled on the UK and consequently, suffers the same strengths and the same demerits as the good old NHS. My wife suffers from rheumatoid arthritis and is a frequent user of the service. In May she had surgery on her cervical spine and last week she had an emergency op on her lumbar spine. In this regard, I can find no fault. The acute service here is amazing. If you really need prompt medical attention you will get it and the quality is second to none.

If you want your bunion clipped or a hernia operation then proceed to the bottom of the waiting list. Waiting times are a problem unless you have the gelt to go private. Then, of course, everything happens in a bright flash. I rarely burden the health service, but last year I required investigation for a 'bad back'- the bane of the ageing bipedal human. I chose the private route, without medical insurance. A week later after receiving excellent diagnostic testing I was relieved of $1000 and told I had arthritis of the spine; old age is finally taking its toll. I'm not complaining about that. It was my choice and I had the quick reassurance that I was not suffering from something more sinister, such as an autoimmune condition. However, if you are ever unfortunate to visit the Emergency Department, except when the  'All  Blacks' are playing, expect a long wait; generally a very long wait. And if you turn up on Friday or Saturday nights, well don't.

In my experience, the NZ doctors and nurses in the public system are well trained, dedicated and overworked. My wife's neurosurgeon is highly qualified, highly skilled and has a genuine concern for patient care. He could bugger off to the States and earn huge amounts-  he's a brain surgeon, after all.


My gripe concerns the administrators and especially senior administrators. The people want shorter waiting times and the government responds not by allocating more resources, which requires more money, but by placing pressure on the senior administrators who run the various district health hubs. I understand that resources are limited, tis all about money after all and hence tax money and there is only so much shearing of the sheep that is permissible. For that I'm thankful. So what do administrators do? Well, one thing they can do is ensure that patients/clients/stakeholders/consumers: read as to current buzz-word, spend the absolute minimum time in hospital. Once stabilised post-op, you are out. It matters not that the patient, in the best interests of medical care, should have received a few extra days of medical supervision. The inpatient turn round times look good on a graph at board meetings and the CEO gets his/her $200,000 annual bonus. The incumbent government can gloat verily about current statistics and everyone involved in the healthcare business, including senior administrators, knows its all, absolute, complete, bollocks.         

Tuesday, 19 September 2017

Stating the bleeding obvious

A few weeks ago I wrote a piece about signs stating the bleedingy obvious. As this post was received with mind-numbing apathy I've decided to repeat the process. Also, this type of post is piss easy to put together as the pictures write the story. Being a particularly lazy, but wonderfully put together fella, imbued with idleness and sloth, this sort of post suits my nature. All have to do is add is a few dry, wry, laconic comments and then I can bugger off to the pub for a quart, or two, of refreshing ale with my beer drinking ferret, Shagger.

Read and be amazed.



To be honest it is probably better to throw away the pizza and eat the box as far nutrition and taste is concerned. Have you tried Domino's pizza these days? The advice on the box is clearly aimed at the product demographic: dumb, young and intoxicated. 




Perhaps aimed at the consumer with a lacklustre appreciation of the gravity concept. Though to be fair most folks don't understand that gravity is merely an artefact of mass warping space-time. You know that 'civilisation' is doomed when you start to see this sort of advice. Of course, the folks who don't know which way up to hold a cup are also unlikely to be able to read. 


I've done some stupid stuff when I was a young man. I suppose it's a natural part of growing up. Luckily, most men learn from experience and come out the other side as decent citizens. For some folk, it is a near run thing. And for a sad minority it turns out to be their continuing reality. There is nothing as sad as seeing a middle-aged man acting like an immature teenager. And being drunk is never a valid excuse. From a developmental perspective they have become stuck. The learning process has become bypassed and they are doomed to become a target of ridicule, for ever. When I was 19 and drunk, I might have thought it a good idea to sit on a patient and inert crocodile. Luckily, for the furtherance of mankind, I never had the opportunity.




Now for me, this is sound advice. I'm drawn to fire. It activates and titivates a primeval atavistic desire. As I've aged, I have managed to keep my incendiary proclivities under control. There are those who aver that I burned down my alma mater (Tipton Secondary Modern) the day after I left. Scurrilous rumours, say I. The circumstantial evidence might have been strong, but the rozzers could never pin it on me as they were reliant on a frank confession, which they never got; eat your heart out, Inspector Drysdale.

Anyway, the notice is rather sensible. Don't ever throw your children onto a fire. C'mon, kids are precious little dumplings. However, if they are really naughty you could always expose them to a little, light singeing.  Nuff said.


If you don't know how to check whether your baby has had a shit then I suspect that this parenting thingy is not for you. Just get a ferret, they shit and piss all over the place. No need for a nappy, just put paper down in every corner. For some strange reason ferrets like to shit in corners. I've always thought it wise that prospective parents should undergo some form of IQ test. Those that don't make the grade are then sterilised. It's an observation of mine that those folk least fit to be parents are the ones that have the most kids.


Continuing with the bad parenting theme. Although it has to said that if you wash item with little L'Oriel (pronounced: poor white/black trash) still inside you will be saving on water and energy. And we must take care of the environment or hippy, greeny, whiney types get very upset. 



Not sure what to make about this disturbing image. When would it occur to anyone to stick a fuel nozzle up their arse (arse)? Takes anal probing to a whole new level. "Honestly doctor I slipped in the petrol station forecourt".  

Enough insanity for now. I promise my next post will be quite sensible about sensible stuff, honest.



Tuesday, 12 September 2017

The man who stares at sheep

Looks a bit like Jesus, but a bit Slavic looking for my taste


How would you like to earn loads of cash for doing bugger all? Sounds like a dream job, doesn't it? Surely no such job exists except in the realms of fantasy or a fancy in a madman's dream. But you would be wrong.

Let me introduce you to Braco. This fella holds an audience in his thrall and induces mild hysteria. So what does Braco do to deserve this devotion and attention? Well, not a lot really. He stands on the stage and gazes beatifically into the middle distance. That's it. For the privilege of watching Braco stare wistfully, you can expect to part with $10 for a 10 minute staring session after the obligatory flim flam introduction by his acolytes. At his best, he can entertain 10,000 people a day. This makes Braco a very wealthy man, indeed.

His adherents say that Braco's gaze has healing properties, although Braco has never explicitly stated that his gaze can heal he is clearly complicit with the notion and has never denied the claim. Actually, we never get to hear Braco talk on his 'abilities' as he never gives interviews or talks in public, at all. Tis all part of his mystique and enigmatic character. Usually, scam artists are adept at the patter and have a certain verbal charm and elegance/eloquence. Not so with Braco, he has stripped down the process to a bare minimum. It is even reckoned that simply staring at a picture of Braco will elicit peace, harmony and a cure.  

There will always be folk looking for a spiritual quick fix to find meaning and happiness in this life. Likewise, there will always be those who are happy to exploit the gullible and hard of thinking out of their gelt. Shamans, priests, gurus, televangelists and other charlatans have always been there to benefit financially. Rarely do mystics provide a service for free. And not only do they make money they make a hell of a lot of money. So much for the austere spiritual life. 

And is often the case with 'gurus' he has attracted celebrity endorsement. Apparently, Naomi Campbell is quite a fan. Why we should take heed of an unpleasant, air-head, clothes horse is completely beyond my ken.  

I've left a couple of links for my reader's perusal. I'm interested in hearing other opinions on 'Braco the Gazer' in the comments.





."

Monday, 11 September 2017

Scrotometer




It has been incumbent upon myself to invent a novel device for the measurement of testicular movement in all three planes. This is a neglected area of study and to date, I can find no article dealing with this most sensitive of topics. I, therefore, provide valuable and ground breaking research into this vexed area of study. Truly imbued with the pioneering spirit it is my fondest desire that others will take up the challenge and cast new light onto the field of scrotal metrics.

Try this at home
This invention was suggested to me after taking a hot bath, and noting while lying naked on the bed, the random, rapid and independent movement of my testicular tissue, without the intervention of external forces. I have been researching this phenomenon for many years and have come to the sound empirical conclusion that this represents normal scrotal behaviour after a thermal challenge. Hence, I have invented, the ‘Scrotometer.’ This device allows quantitative and objective measurement of scrotal activity. This is a scientific instrument that anyone can make in their home and should be a ‘must have item’ in every man’s bath room cabinet.

The Technical bit………
After a leisurely bath, simply take a sterile wooden skewer and insert into the posterior portion of the scrotal sac, taking care to avoid sensitive testicular tissue. Please note, a metal skewer will not do as the weight detracts from the instrument’s sensitivity. Place a child’s crayon on the non-testicular end of the skewer. Feel free to choose a coloured crayon of your choice. I like to use a mauve crayon as it contrasts nicely with the blend of seminal fluid and blood. Try to avoid an erection during the process. Place a piece of card or stiff paper next to the crayon. Your palpitating scrotum will do the rest. Consequent renditions make a suitable counterpoise for your living room décor or failing that you can stack them adroitly on your coffee table.

Friday, 8 September 2017

More shit about Tipton......

How pickled I am.

The Mayor of Tipton, Sir Enoch Vowel Jnr III, announced today that Tipton will host the forthcoming ‘Miss Gypo Universe’ contest. Sir Vowel is earnestly seeking a compere to judge the prestigious event but unfortunately suitably slimly and ingratiating ‘hosts’ keep dying by the bus load. It was hoped that Sir Benny ‘How pickled I am’ Pod would be in the running for the job. However, it was revealed that Pod had actually been dead for the past five years unbeknownst to his manager and wife, Trixie Bell. Apparently, Sir Benny’s high blood alcohol level had prevented major decomposition and his inactivity was ascribed to a period of rest following extensive dental surgery.

Already, glamorous gypos from all round the West Midland Metropolitan region have been clamouring to register for this once in a life time event. Sharon ‘It’s not eczema it’s impetigo’ Mugumbo, from Dudley North East, is as excited as a ferret eating polystyrene and gushed wantonly: “I be so excited, innit. I can’t wait to meet *****". Complete as necessary from the following 'celebs' according to current animation status:  Ben Pod (dead); Arthur Askew (dead); Henry Kissinger (mostly dead from the neck down); Richard O’Sullivan (not sure if he’s dead. Will have to Gogle it. Definitely did not look well last time I saw him in Aldi); Wee Kranky McSherbet (not looking good, might not make it to the podium). Sharon can’t wait to grapple with Chardonay ‘Hep C’ O’Magumbo (Smethwick West), in the emptying crap everywhere and not paying taxes round. She is certainly a strong contender in the whippet hurling and being drunk and obnoxious in the local hostelry playoffs.

If she wins the contest Sharon would like to work with children displaced by war and hunger; foster goodwill amongst all nations; promote world peace and round up of the inhabitants of the Gornal Wood gypsy encampment, hand them over to the special Einsatzgruppen battalion for special treatment and liquidation with extreme prejudice.

Laudable sentiments indeed, Miss Mugumbo.  


 
Sharon in repose


Tuesday, 5 September 2017

Charles Robert Darwin

Behold a great man

Charles Darwin was typical of the gentleman savant of 18th/19th century Britain. An amateur meddler who, because he enjoyed financial independence through inheritance and land, could do as he pleased. And fortunately for the furtherance of science he chose biological research.

Charles Robert Darwin was born in 1809 to English landed gentry in the town of Shrewsbury, situated north-west of Tipton. Darwin was originally destined to become a physician, like his father, and began study in 1829 at Edinburgh University. However, Darwin was not enamoured with the profession and had the ungentlemanly (not a real word, but you get the drift)  habit of fainting at the sight of blood. Darwin's father thought that a change in career choice would be in order and Darwin dutifully resumed his studies and prepared for a career in the Church as an Ordained Minister. During this time Darwin developed a passion for natural history and geology and he was fortunate to come under the wing of a succession of eminent scholars. In 1831 he was awarded a BA degree in Theology. Darwin was considered a lack lustre student and perhaps a poor intellect by his father and peers. In Victorian England the route to the parish was paved with the sons of the rich who were considered not bright enough to pursue a conventional career in Medicine or Law.

Darwin's zeal to embark on a life as a 'Country Parson' was non-existent and in 1831 Darwin obtained passage as resident naturalist on HMS Beagle. For the next 5 years the Beagle would explore the Southern Atlantic before traversing the Straits of Magellan and entering the Pacific Ocean. Stopovers were frequent on the mainland and the many islands encountered en route.

As the ship's naturalist, Darwin took a keen interest in the exotic fauna he encountered. I'll not dwell too much on his research as it is not the purpose of this brief post. Needless to say his experiences whilst on the Beagle gave forth to a germ of an idea which when fully matured gave birth to his theories on natural selection and evolution. His famous book: 'Origin of the Species' was finally published in 1859. Even without his work on natural selection, Darwin would be considered an exceptional scientist due to his ground breaking work in geology and biology in general. He was the foremost authority on earthworms, beetles and animal husbandry. What is so astonishing is that he never received a formal education in the sciences. Darwin represents the last of the Great English Gentleman Naturalists.

Darwin rushed his book into print because it became known to him that he was not alone in his conclusions. The Englishman, Alfred Wallace, had also worked out the same thesis. A Gentleman's agreement was swiftly reached and papers written by the two men were presented at the Linnaean Society in 1858. How interesting that these men, working at that time and independently should arrive at the same intellectual place? Curious indeed, but not unprecedented. It is to be remembered that Isaac Newton and Gottfried Leibnitz invented infinitesimal calculus at the same time. In the case of Newton and Leibnitz no gentleman's agreement was reached resulting in a nasty, permanent, petulant break between the Great Men.

In regard to the theory of evolution, all the pieces of the puzzle were available to the astute biologist of the mid 19th century. It took a genius to place all the bits of evidence into a comprehensive whole. Actually, the theory of evolution is deceptively simple, so simple that only a genius could have worked it out. So what were the great Darwinian/Wallace insights? It can be considered thusly:

It is an observation that organisms will rapidly breed until a check intervenes. Most likely this will occur due to an exhaustion of available resources, usually food.

Individuals within a species differ in their behavioural and physical characteristics and these characteristics are heritable.

Changes in the environment drive selection. Those organism best suited to a given environment, at a given time, thrive and beget more offspring than their less 'biologically fit' brethren. Thus adaptive traits become fixed in the surviving population. Over eons large scale biological change can occur in a population resulting in the formation of new species. .

That is the quintessence of evolution. The rest is mere commentary- go read.

It is difficult for modern educated folk (most at least) to imagine the impact Darwin’s theory had on the scientific community and Victorian society in general during the mid 19th century. Most scientists welcomed the theory and rapidly assimilated its implications. The established church and those of a conservative nature, or of a pious disposition (often the same thing), recoiled in horror. The advance of science was almost complete in removing the need for a deity to describe nature and natural phenomenon. The ‘God of the gaps’ had nowhere to scurry and shrivelled under the cleansing light of the scientific method (you couldn’t resist waxing lyrical, could you Flaxen?). As for poor Wallace, the man never received the credit he deserved. But this was not of Darwin’s doing. Darwin remained, always a fair, equitable man and it is not Darwin’s fault that history has been unkind to Wallace. Perhaps one day I’ll redeem and redress the balance and give fair credit to Wallace’s contribution. Or perhaps I’ll forget, who can say?

If you would like to gain insight into Darwin and 'Evolutionary Theory', consider the following links and be amazed: Darwin influences   Preamble  Evolution


Wednesday, 30 August 2017

Wednesday Whimsy


We all deserve to be loved but finding a suitable mate can be fraught with difficulties and frustration. In my day we used to hit the local disco on a Friday/Saturday night. The lack of light, pounding music and a belly full of ale made for indiscriminate selection criteria. In the 70s everyone had long hair making it even more difficult to pick out a mate. The opening gambit usually consisted of: "Are you a guy or chick?"  It is best to sort this sort of thing out at the beginning otherwise you may wake up with a hairy miner from Walsall.

Tis much more simple these days. Just upload a profile and picture on the netty and watch all the gorgeous chicks come to you. No rejection, no having to buy a dozen Babyshams and brandies and no daft gyrations on the dance floor as you try to convince your intended that you actually watched 'Saturday night fever' all the way through.

For some folk it may be prudent if they took a little time and effort to make sure that the picture they upload shows off their assets in the best possible light. Sound advice, you say. But some folk are just irredeemably dim.

   
Who you looking at?
They notice your sword, first? You sure it's not the fact that your eyes are too far apart. Worst case of hypertelorism I've ever seen.


Lawrence of Tipton
I think he already knows the answer to his question. Throwing a towel over your head and looking freaky ain't helping your dating chances. Or at least put on a clean towel- might corner the niche Middle East market.



You sure it's not shooting women?

Was this picture taken at the Bate's Motel? Where is the ski mask and chain saw? 

Wot a fucking nutter

Well that's something you don't hear every day. My first question would have to be: what does Jesus look like? Is he tall, of a fair complexion/hair with dreamy blue eyes or is he short, dark and Jewish looking?


Me lika women- honestly
No repressed issues here. This is a straight up and down man who definitely likes girls. If you are into bum fun, do not message this exclusively heterosexual man. Doesn't he look a bit like that Bonaduce fella?



ARSE
I'm strangely drawn to this young, hot blonde. Not sure whether it is the lack of gag reflex or her arse (it's her arse).




O, those Russians


In Russia, it get cold. Come in warm bath. Together we can soak up all the water with our flock jackets. Then we make love with our clothes on. Squelchy, squelchy.


Pies, num, num
What more does a women need in a man? I guessing he is not a sensitive 'new man' type. Don't try to share at the same food trough, he might shoot ya.


Fucking weirdo
This pretentious twat has a face you just want to punch repeatedly, then bang his smug bonce against a brick wall. I'm not advocating violence but some folk really deserve a good hearty kicking. Well at least it would fulfill goal number 4. 


Anyway, enough for now. I'm orf to the pub for a snifter....
Toodly Pip