Tuesday, 23 November 2010

Reality TV

As a general rule of thumb I’m not an enormous fan of reality TV. Most of the shows are filled with vacuous imbeciles who clearly have a thoroughly overblown opinion of themselves. The worst part is that large sections of the general public lap these people up and celebrate them as if they’re actually worth celebrating. I just don’t get it. That’s more a comment on society than the contestants themselves, of course.

However, the one reality show I genuinely enjoy watching is I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here. Something about the format makes it infinitely better than the other festivals of reality shit that pour out of the telebox on a regular basis. Maybe it’s the consistently amusing quips of Ant & Dec that keep it moving along so brilliantly. Perhaps it’s the variety of familiar faces on offer that maintains interest. Or maybe it’s just the fact that it’s set in a jungle in a tropical location. I don’t know. What I do know is that I’m A Celeb offers up a far more entertaining slice of television than all of the other reality shows put together.

Let’s look at the facts: these are people probably accustomed to living in a fair degree of comfort, and here they are co-existing in some genuinely testing conditions with cameras pointing at them constantly. Bad performances in tasks deprive them of a decent meal, jungle creepy crawlies the size of a small dog wander through camp 24/7 and they’re sleeping on makeshift camp beds out in the open in a fucking jungle! I mean just look at the X-Factor – if some deluded fuckwit gets up and attempts Bryan Adams instead of Westlife, Louis Walsh will gush over them for performing outside their comfort zone. Seriously?! Throw the fucker in the jungle, make them eat rice and beans and shit in a bucket for three weeks, then we’ll see if they’re outside their ruddy comfort zone!

Even z-list celebrities who are only famous because they were once tag-teamed by a group of footballers gradually earn your respect on I’m A Celeb. It’s hard not to feel an ounce of admiration for someone willing to selflessly devour a marsupial’s anus just to provide meals for their fellow campers. Would you even do that for your mates, let alone a bunch of strangers you’ve only recently been thrown into a jungle with? Equally, if one of the contestants is a genuine cretin (cough, McKeith, cough), it’s impossible for them to hide it in such circumstances. People’s true colours will inevitably shine through in such testing conditions, for better or for worse.

As such, Big Brother, X-Factor, Britain’s Got Talent and The Only Way Is Essex can all go swivel if you ask me. Nothing more than sickly exercises in self-aggrandisement and disgustingly undeserved backslapping. Strictly Come Dancing can stay if it likes. It all seems very good natured and doesn’t do anyone any harm. Plus the female dancers are all very pretty. But I’m A Celeb continues to rule in my eyes. I’ll leave you with a brief list of facts to have been thrown up by the latest series:

1) Gillian McKeith has single-handedly earned her children at least a year’s worth of bullying. Cheers mum.

2) The combination of this year’s I’m A Celeb and Google Images has probably guaranteed at least an extra 10 million people have now seen Kayla Collins’ vagina.

3) Dom Joly should be referred to forever more as “The Voice Of The Nation”.

4) Stacey Solomon proves that all can be forgiven if you go on I’m A Celeb after X-Factor.

5) She also proves that hyperventilation needn’t interrupt speech.

6) Gillian McKeith is just one year older than Nigella Lawson. I’m not saying I’m particularly attracted to Lawson, but it makes me think I’d rather eat what she’s eating than what Gillian says we should eat.

7) I still don’t bother voting for anyone.

8) Having dated both Kara Tointen and Caroline Flack, it’s safe to assume that Joe Swash practises mind control.

Friday, 24 September 2010

Don't bother asking the butler...

If, like me, your daily intake of the news consists largely of skimming over the important stories and concentrating instead on the tales of pigs with three testicles and trees that smell like Battenberg, you will probably have noticed that AskJeeves.com recently published a list of the top 10 “unanswerable” questions. I was intrigued to discover what these questions were and very much looked forward to rubbing my chin and exhaling loudly as I nodded in agreement with Jeeves. These questions really must be too hard, I confidently assumed. In many ways I was already feeling a little bit sorry for the chap, after all he’s just a butler and here he was expected to make sense of questions that are physically impossible to answer! The poor bastard. Imagine my surprise then, when the majority of them actually seemed positively ‘answerable’. Follow me down the garden path as I attempt to answer the top 10 unanswerables.

1. What is the meaning of life?
Honestly? There is no meaning of life. It just happened and now we’re here. Why does it have to have a meaning? Just enjoy it you overly analytical brain-bastard. I saw a poo on the pavement earlier. It didn’t have a meaning; it was just smelly.

2. Is there a God?
There are loads. And they’re all fictional. My personal favourite is Ate, the ancient Greek goddess of foolish actions. I mean, who doesn’t love You’ve Been Framed, right?!

3. Do blondes have more fun?
No. Fun people have more fun. I’m fairly sure it’s not hair colour dependent. Hugh Hefner had brown hair back in the day. You do the math.

4. What is the best way to lose weight?
Seriously? This question was deemed unanswerable?! Jeeves, pack your bags and get out. GET OUT. HOP IT! Obviously the best way to lose weight is to stop eating all that shit and do some fucking exercise.

5. Is there anybody out there?
OK, so this one is a bit tricky. Unless you just mean outside your house, in which case, yes, there is someone out there. If you mean out there in space, I’m going to go with “yes” here too. If the universe is infinite, I find it hard to believe there isn’t at least one other planet with the right conditions for life. We’ll probably never meet them though. Infinity is quite a large distance. Longer than a marathon, certainly.

6. Who is the most famous person in the world?
The correct answer to this is, “Who gives a ruddy arse?”

7. What is love?
To quote Owen Wilson in Wedding Crashers, “True love is the soul's recognition of its counterpoint in another.” That’s lovely, but it’s rubbish. I love Papa John’s XL Hawaiian, but I’m pretty sure it doesn’t have a soul to reflect mine. I think it’s when you care for someone or something enough that the thought of them coming to harm makes your stomach go all scrunched up. And that’s why I personally believe pizza delivery men should all drive Volvos.

8. What is the secret to happiness?
Good health, good friends, good family, good times. Oh, and an endless pile of money. When I hear people say you can’t buy happiness, it makes me want to punch them really hard right on the bloody face. 90% of my day-to-day stress and worry stems from money or the lack thereof. Remove 90% of my stress and I guarantee I’ll be happier.

9. Did Tony Soprano die?
I’m afraid I genuinely can’t answer this one, as I never watched the show. If I had to guess, I’d say he survived, moved to Sheffield, built the world’s largest Laser Quest arena and grew an impressive, but not award-winning moustache.

10. How long will I live?
If you honestly think that an Internet search engine will be able to answer that, then there’s a good chance you’re already brain dead.

Tuesday, 20 July 2010

Me - Factfile

July – it’s been a bad month for this blog. Most of my ramblings have been inspired by annoyances, hatred and contempt. Unfortunately, save for the usual gripes, July has been a joyous month so far. Bugger. I won’t bore you with any of that. Instead, I’ll offer up a quick factfile about myself, your blogger.

• Until the age of twelve I believed that Siamese twins were conjoined cats.

• Sex Education at the age of 10 messed me up pretty bad.

• Turning 30 in just over a month terrifies me.

• If I could only eat one genre of food for the rest of my life it would be Italian. No doubt. Pasta and pizza rule my world. Sure, I’d miss curries and Chinese, but I probably couldn’t live without pasta.

• Seeing people get hit in the face by balls (of the sporting variety) will always be funny. So long as they’re all right afterwards, of course. Even if they weren’t it would probably warrant a laugh until I realised the severity of the situation.

• My second toe in is longer than my big toe. I see this as a strength. Others see it as a mutation. I can pick up stuff with my feet. They can’t. You do the math.

• I get overly embarrassed when a rubbish song comes on my iPod on the train. Not that I ever listen to it loudly on public transport. But there’s still always the outside chance that someone will hear me listening to ‘Call the Shots’ by Girls Aloud, and that won’t do anything for my public profile.

• I would probably do just about anything for a good payday right now. Make me an offer. Let’s test this shit out.

• I’d like to live in a foreign country. England is waaaay too aggro for my liking. I appreciate that’s a sweeping generalisation, but I’ve just got back from Madrid where hundreds of thousands of people were celebrating a football game by getting extremely drunk in the street. I didn’t see one bit of trouble, and you hardly knew the police were even there. That could never happen in London.

• I can’t sleep on my back. And I can’t sleep on planes without medication.

• If I could have any super power, it would be the ability to stop time still yet be able to move around freely whilst everything else was frozen. I wouldn’t age at all during these periods. That would be awesome. The possibilities are endless.

• I’ve always been a dog man, but cats are definitely growing on me. Not literally. If only they didn’t have to shit in a box in your house. That’s a definite mark against them.

And once again I am spent. Maybe I’ll hit you with some more hot facts soon. Any questions/comments, fire away. Much love.

Wednesday, 2 June 2010

The Rucksack Conundrum

There I was, minding my own business, when a complete stranger strolled up to me and put my life in very real danger. He didn’t have a knife, nor did he threaten to nudge me into the flow of oncoming traffic. He did something far, far worse. Quite simply, he uttered the dreadful words no sane person ever wants to hear: “Sorry, would you mind watching my bag for me whilst I pop to the loo?”

What a c**t. Does he have no shame?! For a man who worries as much as I do, this was the verbal equivalent of smashing my face in with fully-grown, adult male grizzly bear. I was right up the shitter and no mistake. The rules of conduct state that there was nothing I could do. You simply can’t say no to that request, no matter how dangerous a proposition it truly is. Better to go down in a blaze of glory than be regarded as a right rotten shit.

So off he trotted, leaving me with his bag, at which point four possibilities started racing through my mind.

1) The bag has a bomb in it and I’m standing here right at the epicentre of the shit storm. Not only am I going to be shortly pulverised into some kind of fleshy soup, but CCTV images will later identify me as the murderer of countless other innocent victims. Of course, the alternative is that I call the police and waste everyone’s time as they shut off the whole of London to carry out a controlled explosion on a bag probably containing nothing more dangerous than an A4 jotter and a flapjack. Ruddy Hell.

2) What if someone takes a liking to the bag and decides to try stealing it? As temporary custodian of said oversized satchel, it will be my responsibility to either give chase or engage the would-be thief in an ugly bout of mortal combat. There’s a very real chance that I’m going to get my face punched off simply because one bag-carrying bastard can’t control his bladder. Awful. £10 says the thief is Jean Claude Van Damme too. Great, now I’m going to get my face kicked to smithereens.

3) What if he never comes back? I can’t leave it now; the verbal man-contract is utterly binding. Will I have to stand here with this distasteful rucksack forever and ever and eternity? Will I slowly ebb away right here in public as some idiot’s backpack stares at me with its zipper like a shit-eating grin? Panic heightens.

4) Of course there’s always the chance he’ll come back in about four minutes time, thank me and head off with his leathery, bag-shaped mistress to torment some other poor bugger. All my worrying will have been for nothing. He’ll have made an idiot and a victim of me in one terrible swoop.

As it happens, he returned quicksmart, thanked me endlessly and was utterly apologetic. So I kicked him in the neck and told him to grow up.

Sunday, 18 April 2010

More observations

I'll let you in on a little secret here; when I do these random observation blogs it's because I feel guilty about not having written in a while but have neither the time nor the inclination to construct a well thought out and informed rant right now. Therefore I just write lots of things that I've seen recently that have either annoyed or amused me. Sometimes things amaze me too, but it's quite rare these days. So there you have it. I'm fobbing you off with some lazy verbal toss. Don't hate me too much.

+ It's been one of the most joyously sunny days of the year so far today. I spent most of it indoors trying to make the flat as dark as possible for photography purposes. I suck.

+ That said, I did play 90 minutes of football yesterday in the blazing sunshine, leading to a burnt face and mild sunstroke. The weekend wasn't a complete washout...

+ Icelandic volcano. What a c***.

+ Playing football yesterday also alerted me to the fact that it is possible to be athletic even though your legs are the width of a grass snake. I swear Peter Crouch's skinnier brother was playing against us yesterday. He should have had a pie at half time, not an orange slice.

+ The warm weather really does divide people. I saw someone today wearing a wooly hat and a warm jacket. Shortly down the road I saw someone practically naked. It begs the question, what does the first person do in the dead of winter, and what the hell does the second person do when it's genuinely hot? Some people have messed up internal thermostats. Either that or they're fucking imbeciles.

+ I know it's petty, but I'm starting to consider deleting my Facebook account. It's not because I hate the bizarreness of it all. No. It's not even because I have to constantly see photos of other people in exotic locations clearly having far more fun than me sat at my desk in work. Goodness no. The only reason I'm thinking of leaving the biggest social networking site in the world today is because of the truly horrific standard of grammar and punctuation used by the majority of people on it. Just to clarify, they're, their and there are three completely different words with entirely different meanings. We're and were are not the same thing, and neither are to and too. If a post spans more than six or seven lines it's likely a full stop or a comma were needed in there at some point. I don't think I'm friends with anyone younger than 20 on Facebook. There are no excuses.

Right, low quality rant over. Hopefully I'll think of something more interesting to say soon. Either that or I'll post a photo of my face looking mildly disgruntled. A picture paints a thousand words and all that...

Tuesday, 23 March 2010

Females = Different

I'll keep this very brief because it's 10:46pm and, quite frankly, I'd much rather be in bed right now. Maybe this should be called "Females = Different: Pt.1" because there are likely to be many more entries on this theme. And before anyone sets fire to a bra and throws it at me, different doesn't necessarily mean bad. Simple observations. I'll leave it up to you to decide the rights and wrongs in this case...

Anyway, the single event that prompted this entry occurred tonight. Quite simply, I handed a ladywoman (who, for the purpose of this blog and factual correctness, will be referred to as my 'girlfriend') a small chunk of chocolate. At this point a male would've said something like, "Cheers mate," before scoffing it without a second thought.

Interestingly, however, the lady in question could only make basic noises as she strolled away to find a comfy chair. I've thought long and hard for a way to accurately put the noise she made into text, and this is the only way I could describe it...

Imagine you're saying something to a small child who is yet to master the art of speech. In fact, "dada" is about the pinnacle of their spoken word so far. OK, now imagine that same, speechless small child agreeing with something you've just said through the power of guttural noises. Now that is the exact noise this chocolate chomping, fully grown adult lady blurted out as she wandered off.

Fascinating. Clearly I'm not exactly breaking any new ground here, but I thought I'd share it with you nonetheless. Just cup your ear next time you see a female ladyperson grabbing some chocco. Truly fascinating.

Wednesday, 17 March 2010

Just some stuff

Think my train hit a bird this morning on the way into Waterloo. Either that or a pillow. With jam in it. Not sure which is more likely.

Saw a guy with so much toothpaste around his mouth that he looked more like a fully made-up clown who had missed a bit.

Waterloo stunk of faeces this morning. I thought you weren’t supposed to flush the toilets whilst the train is in a station? I don’t make the rules. Who poos on a train anyway?

I’m noticing that many of my posts are train-related. Given the amount of time I spend on them I guess it’s understandable. Doesn’t make it right though. You don’t see Wayne Rooney blogging about lawns.

I’ve been listening to the Ricky Gervais podcasts quite a lot lately. It’s made me want to team up with a very tall Bristolian and write an award-winning TV series. I’ll settle for the West Country though if Bristol is too specific. If you’re out there, get in touch.

There is currently a small group of ladybirds (correct collective noun for a group of ladybirds, anyone?) squatting in my bathroom. When I say squatting, I mean they’re living there without permission. They’re not crouching in unison. Anyway, whilst I initially found this quite charming, it has now become something of an annoyance. Nobody needs a small, spotty beetle flying around their head when they’re trying to put a contact lens in their eye. I might kick them all in the teeth.