Colleague: They’re basically birds’ periods.
Me: You don’t often hear eggs described that way, do you? “Go to work on a bird’s period.”
Sometimes expensive foods don’t taste better, they just hurt your gums more.
See Kettle Chips, crusty bread
If you thought that David Cameron, Gordon Brown and Nick Clegg had a bad night then imagine what it must feel like for Robert Griffiths. The best that can be said of his party’s results is that they did not come last in every seat they contested. Not quite.
Whilst sitting in a dreadful pub in Bridgwater I had the qualified pleasure of listening to Nelly Furtado’s I’m Like a Bird. It was difficult, over the sound of the Sky Sports channel, to work out the second line of the chorus. By the time I realised that it was “I’ll only fly away” my companion and I had already come up with several alternatives that, perhaps arrogantly, I think are superior. Nelly may have won a Grammy, but she’s no birdologist.
1. I’m like a bird, I’ll crap on your windscreen.
2. I’m like a bird, I’ll regurgitate a worm.
3. I’m like a bird, I’ll eat seed off a table.
4. I’m like a bird, I’m closely descended from dinosaurs.
5. I’m like a bird, I’ll explode if you feed me Alka Seltzer on account of being unable to burp.
The reporting of jokes contained in a Foreign Office memo about an impending Papal visit to Britain has been pretty po-faced. The memo did indeed feature suggestions that Benedict XVI could open an abortion ward, launch a brand of condoms and bless a gay wedding, but it also contained less offensive and funnier jokes about him doing forward rolls to promote healthy living and apologising for the Spanish Armada.
It may be worthwhile to celebrate this inspired piece of memo-drafting with an alternative top five activities for a visiting Pope.
1. Visit a Portaloo in a wooded area. Possibly with a Catholic bear, if available.
2. Receive a rapturous welcome in Camden from purveyors of witty T-shirts lionising his attested recreational drug use.
3. Have his bottom bitten by a flea, thus vindicating the mawkish song Little People in Les Miserables that makes the point that humble creatures can affect grandees.
4. Burn Protestants. Health and safety advice suggests burning only dead ones at a crematorium.
5. Put up a tent, go on a bicycling holiday, and other activities that may remind him of his formative years in the Hitler Youth.
By popular request, I have a new poll related to Prejudicial Guess Who. Again, I’ll hide my own thoughts on the matter so as to avoid bias.
I had a difference of opinion with H, the girl I’ve been going out with for almost nine months, over the age and tastes of Anita, the wide-eyed blonde of the Guess Who line-up. I asked whether she would prefer The X-Factor or Strictly Come Dancing. H said that she would like both, but would lean towards one of them. I think she would have a clear preference for one of them, and it is not the same one that H suggested.
Cast your votes, and I’ll let you know what I think in a week or two.
UPDATE: The people have spoken, although God only knows what was going through their minds. A majority thought that Anita would prefer to watch Strictly Come Dancing than The X-Factor. Really? Come on – she’s about 15 years old. She’d have posters of Jedward on her bedroom door.
However, I must accept the result. Anita officially would prefer Brucie to Simon.
The results to the Prejudice Guess Who poll are in, and I’m happy to report that the results vindicate my view in all three cases, although not necessarily by the margin I expected.
Charles, by a majority of 54 per cent, would confront a burglar rather than hide and wait for the police.
Albert, by a majority of 80 per cent, prefers vinyl to digital as a medium for listening to music.
And Sally, by a majority of 76 per cent, says “Byeee!” in a high-pitched voice at the end of phone calls.
The result for Albert is jolly heartening, and the one for Sally far more clear cut than I dared hope, but my moment of trousers-down-buttock-slapping triumph has been marred by a gallingly narrow victory for Charles.
Not only would he confront a burglar, I maintain, he would do so with a walking stick and a shout of: “I didn’t fight the Hun to have my house burgled by the likes of you.” He would beat the hapless burglar, possibly to death, and the local press would run a picture of him with his medals under the headline: “War hero gives youth stick.”
Some friends have claimed that his sad eyes suggest a pensioner too weary to put up a fight, but I would contend that this is more than offset by his moustache, and that any antipathy towards violence would be immediately quashed upon sight of his quasi-antique carriage clock in the hands of some hoodie.
Still, the people have spoken, and I accept the result because to reject it would turn the game from Prejudicial Guess Who into Bigoted Guess Who. And, besides, the majority still agreed with me. Hah.
I may have mistranscribed some of this, but here is what was written as the second story on the front of today’s Evening Standard:
Gordon Brown today vowed to “get tough” on equestrianism as he insisted the Government was right to sack a scientist who said horse riding was as dangerous as ecstasy. The Prime Minister warned against the danger of giving “mixed messages” to young people targeted by dealers. Mr Brown said: “A tough policy on equestrianism is essential and it is what the public want. I’ve seen the damage that equestriansim can do and people can see it in estates in London.”
This is almost exactly what it said, although I may have mixed up the word “drugs” with “equestrianism”. Still, they’re as dangerous as each other, statistcially, so it probably doesn’t make any difference.
A worthwhile variant on Guess Who, the venerable board game that involves asking questions to determine which of 24 people’s faces your opponent has in front of him, is the unofficial Prejudicial Guess Who, in which questions must be about personality rather than appearance.
The challenge is to come up with questions that, based solely on players’ prejudices about the characters, allow you to whittle down the field with confidence. For example:
1. Has this person ever rung a sex chatline late at night?
2. When this person sees a plane, does he or she stop and point at it?
3. Does this person use, without irony, the exclamation: “Poppycock”?
The trick is to be sufficiently decisive to eliminate people rapidly without generalising so much that one accidentally excludes the actual candidate.
The other important thing, I discovered today, is not to play with someone who has wildly different prejudices. It was impossible to win against my friend T, for example, because he made judgements that I don’t think anyone else would. To see if I’m right or not, I’d like to conduct a little survey. It won’t be very scientific, I imagine, because unless my fanbase magically increases then the sample size will be too small. Furthermore, T is one of the few people who does read this blog, and so he may try to influence it, but let’s have a go.
I’ll post again in a week or two to say what answers I expected.