Posts Tagged ‘comedy’

It’s rather disheartening for me to find after a good few months of not posting anything to this blog that during the time I haven’t added anything new the numbers of my readers has inexplicably doubled!
I suppose I find myself in good company, Vinnie Van Gough, Van Gof or Van Hoof however you want to say it would probably be lending me his ear over a pint of absinthe, after all he too wasn’t appreciated in his lifetime or even his lunch time.
At this point I’d like to reassure my readers that I am neither dead nor insane or so the voices tell me, of course by the time you read this that status may have changed. Just keep watching Sky ‘breaking news’

That leads me on to next perplexing conundrum – who does actually read this stuff?

Does my boss? I don’t think so, not unless there is an internet connection in his colon which after all is where his head seems to be most of the day. If you are reading this and you know who I am don’t expect me to come quietly, I have a stapler and I am not afraid to use it!

Does my Mum? Yes she does, hi Mum. Actually she doesn’t. Mum thinks the internet is used for fishing and webs are for spiders. I think the internet is for porn and the web is for, well, more porn. Let’s hope we don’t meet in a chat room which luckily is highly unlikely as a chat room is something they have at old people’s homes for the Grannies to watch television and play pass the colostomy bag.

Is it more of my Chechen friends from last year? Somehow I doubt it, if it is they happy Jihad guys, spread the word and thanks for all your support. Of course if it is my beardy friends then I get double bubble because I can include the people who follow this lot around the internet and kick down doors in the middle of the night. Please note I have a new front door, if you are going to pop round for tea and a spot of interrogation let me know and I’ll leave the keys under the flower pot.

So who are you, where are you and are you willing to donate large amount of cash to my ‘lifestyle’ fund? My Uncle the Nigerian General would be very interested to hear from you and for a modest finder’s fee I can put you in touch, THIS IS NOT A SCAM.

Anyone that replies saying something nice will be added to a free prize draw – prize to be donated by my Chechen fan club.

Over (the hill) and Out.

PostScript – Yes I know the ‘Chechen’ bloke is actually a British copper but I liked the picture…..alright?


We have a shop on site; I might have mentioned it before. Frankly it’s to customers what British Petroleum is to coastal conservation.

Ostensibly it is a hybrid of newsagent, coffee shop, dry cleaners and an undertaker, all rolled into one not very handy one stop shop for all your consumer needs, assuming you don’t need a bargain or anything vaguely good…

If you have a mental picture of a bustling corner style shop packed to the rafters with all manner of wondrous items then think again. It more resembles one of those pictures you see of shops in Russia – shelves empty apart from the odd lonely non descript tin of mystery meat and staff who look like they were trained by the KGB and are about as happy to see you as they would be an outbreak of cholera. I think most of them were extras in Shaun of the Dead and not only have they forgotten to have their ghoulish make up removed but they are always in character, impressive.

As per my last missive you’ll be aware that I currently have a heightened awareness for ludicrous posters on notice boards, and this week they seem to be multiplying quicker than Albanians at a free range goat farm. One of my new favourites is the ‘Meal Deal’ marketing that’s sprung up everywhere near the little shop of horrors. For the princely sum of £4.29 you can be the proud new owner of a soggy pre packed sandwich and some crisps – round that up to £4.99 and you can throw in an apple or an orange, since when is spending 70p on an apple any sort of deal! More to the point, guess how much the shop charge if you just fancied just purchasing one of your five a day, yep, its 70p.

Meal………Nutritionally debatable but I’ll concede the point

Deal ……..A Provincial town in Kent which is about as close as this laminated piece of fiction gets!

One of the other oddities of the place is that in these times of economic drought they do not like being busy, so much so that they had an email sent round to the whole battery farm sternly admonishing staff to stay away during busy periods. For those of you interested, their published busy periods apparently are from eight in the morning till one in the afternoon and then three in after afternoon till they close at six, effectively giving us 2 hours to buy stuff, the 2 hours during which they are either stock taking, sleeping, masturbating into the latte machine or a combination of the three. Word from the wise, stay away from the Latte, it tasks kinda peppery.

A McDonald’s style express queue has also been introduced to ‘enhance the consumer experience’ – their words not mine. The express queue by the way is the same as the old queue just with a new shiny sign above it. What I find ironic is that you actually have to wait longer because the lemmings from downstairs seem to think that even if the express till is more crowded than freebie night at the local knocking shop, it it’ll still be quicker that the empty one manned by the bored looking spotty kid at the back, it does say it’s faster after all so it must be…….. for the Love of God, find them a cliff, point the sign towards it and do the world a favour.

Speaking of the lemmings downstairs, nothing is more likely to send me into an apoplectic spiral of rage than some total dullard mincing around in front of me with a jury rigged tea-tray made from the lid of a cardboard box and an order for 15 drinks they are never possibly going to remember, all paid for separately of course. If you want a cup of tea get off your fat arse and go and get one, don’t send the office retard.

All in all I’d rather lube up and enter Mr T than have to shop there but it’s the only thing on offer and as we all know beggars can’t be choosers. Begging isn’t an option here since they off shored the bloke who used to sit by the car park entrance with his cute dog (the dog was not off shored – word is there is a very good reason the Korean cleaners bought up all the beef soup in the canteen that week) anyways, as I see it that only leaves one choice.

……and everyone knows it’s not gay if it’s with a member of the original A Team

The notice boards in the corridors here are used as some sort of Orwellian method of brain washing and for communicating propaganda to the masses. Anyone stupid enough to stop and read them will either immediately fall into a bullshit induced coma, or in rare cases assume the identity of a chicken and have to be talked down from the bike shed roof. This has always been the case and I would imagine will always continue to be so until the end of time or total financial Armageddon, which ever comes first. This topic has so far slipped below my blogging radar because I try my best to totally ignore it, if I can possibly help it, but it’s fast getting to the point where their campaign of puerile patronisation and pedantry is even beginning to burn through my shield of cynicism and world weariness.

Usually I embellish these diatribes slightly to try and make my banal work existence seem interesting but I am going to let the following announcements stand up and speak for themselves – remember reader, someone out there gets paid for creating these genius Goebbelsesqe pieces of propaganda gold!

Exhibit A – A poster showing an elephant with 5 legs emblazoned with the question ‘What do you see?’

Well, I see a 5 legged elephant the same as anyone else from planet earth who looks at it. I suppose if I stood and stared long enough maybe a metamorphosis into something useful would occur, maybe like a 4 legged elephant. The worst thing about this is it’s supposed to be something to do with disabled people in the workplace, personally if I were down on my personal quota of 4 limbs a poster showing an animal with an extra one could be construed as rubbing salt into the stump!

Exhibit B – An order from the third directorate, thought Police.

The football world cup was somewhat of a damp squib (which is an excellent description of Wayne Rooney) but instead of using the opportunity to improve staff cohesion and morale by giving into the inevitable and allowing staff to watch / listen / swear at the football, it was decided to send around a very tersely worded email to the effect of anyone caught even thinking about football would be taken out into the car park and personally introduced to three very real and very hungry lions. The email, which I will not be quoting because it would give away my employer and more importantly because it was a crime against grammatical sentence structure, essentially encouraged all staff to only watch world cup football games using the facilities provided by the company, the rub…… there were no facilities provided by the company – genius!

Exhibit C – Random emails about people I don’t care about nor will ever meet. If my career was any more stagnant I’d appear on maps as a pond so I do not appreciate this newly emerging trend of mailing every man, his dog and his dogs vet to congratulate some arse kissing salesman in the Guatemalan office and laud his pointless accomplishments to all and sundry. Frankly it’s the corporate version of spam although if I am totally honest I have far more use for penis enlargement creams and cheap Prozac than I will ever have for Juan and his impressive quarterly sales figures! Bottom line is no one apart from Juan and his mum could give a shit.

Exhibit D – Begging Letters
Some genius somewhere upstairs has decided that sending what amounts to begging letters to the staff extolling them to apply for current vacancies and using such words as ‘exciting’ ‘talent’ and ‘career’ and the like is a good idea.

Its not….

We all already work here, we know what its like and those ‘new opportunities’ have only arisen because the bloke sat next to you has been made redundant. It’s rather like a poultry farmer asking his chickens if they’d like to apply to be a dipper instead of a Kiev!

Exhibit E – Faux concern about our health and well being.

We are slave labour, that’s fine and we accept the situation. Without slave labour the Egyptians could never have built the pyramids which just goes to show you they need us as much as we need them. They don’t make us wear stripy pyjamas and nor do they insist your id number is tattooed on your forearm (yet). But even so everyone here knows someone who has cracked under the relentless pressure and ended up being forcibly moved from the battery farm to the funny farm.
Emails extolling the virtues of work life balance and telling us that smoking is bad and lettuce is good are constantly arriving in my inbox. Filled with twee nonsense such as ‘invest in yourself and your health, we think you are worth it!’ might ring more true if they hadn’t closed the gym and made it into offices and didn’t insist on phoning me day and night to ask puerile questions instead of letting me spend quality down time with the internet and a take away!

For years then I have managed to let this wash over me, on the Moon there is the sea of tranquillity, sounds nice, here what washes over me is the antithesis of that, lets call it the sea of idiocy…..either way I need some arm bands because I can feel myself going under – I thought drowning was supposed to be peaceful!

In the interests of fostering discourse, generating measured debate and hopefully getting the old synapses popping I want you to ponder on the following question;

‘Do you by dint of your social, educational and work place experiences become a twat or are you born that way?’

In my job I interact on a daily basis with all sorts of people from all walks of life and I like to consider myself to be something of a student of human nature. The good, the bad and most definitely the ugly have all at some point or another crossed my path but fat, thin or sporting a definite face for radio there is one thing that many seem to have in common and you might have guessed it – they are twats.
My father once told me that people use swearing to make their points only do so because they have a fucking shit vocabulary, and I do try to keep that in mind when I write this stuff but sometimes only one word or phrase fits and after much soul and thesaurus searching, twat was the only word that seemed to fit this merry bunch of miscreants.

Twat – ‘Someone who is a stupid incompetent fool, a despicable person, used as a term of contempt and hostility’ (Definition courtesy of me)

Take a moment and close you eyes, let yourself relax and let your brain wander to its happy place. Now visualise the word ‘twat’ and you’ll soon start seeing their faces parade through your minds eye like a who’s who of vindictive misery – surprised at how many your subconscious fits into that bracket? You shouldn’t be, they are everywhere. I am not interested in the numbers though, I am more interested in what has made them the way they are, how do these people turn out differently to us, at which crossroads do they turn away from ‘normal’ and tread down the well worn path to Twatsville?
I personally don’t think you pop out of the womb or in the case of Ginger Bernard the test tube this way, and I don’t think your parents make a conscious decision to bring you up as such a loathsome creature, so it stands to reason that the metamorphosis must occur at school or in the work place.
To me there is an undeniable correlation between the office twat and those who were bullied at school. In the old days they were shipped off straight from boarding school to the Navy where they could hound the French to their black hearts content, but now they seem to be leaking into all facets of society. For example, I am positive my boss had his head flushed down the bog and ‘kick me’ notes stuck to his back on a regular basis and now I have to pay the price for his miserable but thoroughly deserved formative years.
Martinets throughout history have been bullied at school and then as soon as these people get any sort of responsibility or power the beast is unleashed and the price is paid by the innocent as well as the guilty. Hitler had his pencil case stolen by the Jewish kids, the librarians at his school used to hold down Pol Pot and use their spectacles as magnifying glasses to burn him on the nipples till his little creased face puckered in agony and from the photos I have seen he seems to have stayed that way.
I feel then that I have satisfactorily answered my original question, its nurture that creates these horrors and then it’s their own festering nature that turns their lives into a self fulfilling prophecy. But now that’s clear what can we do with them?
Aside from lobbying for a national ‘throw stuff at the twat’ day, and no before you say it St Andrews day does not count…. really…. I can’t see what else we can do, aside from maybe a pre-emptive cull of anyone who applies to be on the Apprentice or wants to work in Insurance.
On that cheery note I’ll bit you all adieu and see you in a few weeks – I am off on holiday!

My boss has invited me to take up the challenge of arranging our department Christmas party, when I say invited I mean ordered, I don’t get a choice – those of you that know me will realise this is about as clever as asking Myra Hindley to baby-sit. This is a ridiculously bad idea for two key reasons, firstly I don’t really like Christmas and secondly I don’t really like the majority of the witless dribbling unwashed masses I am forced to interact with at work, a recipe for festive related disaster me thinks.
The princely sum of £20 per head is available for me to blow on this soirée so an evening at the Ritz is out, incidentally the term ‘per head’ is on the conversational ban list here as it is seen as being derogatory to minorities who were born without heads and also latterly victims of Al Qaeda like that scouse bloke Ken, anyway as usual I digress.
So, I have decided to come at this from a multi faith ethnically diverse and non exclusive approach which for those of you who do not work in directorate three of the thought police (ethnic festival management) means I am going to make it as un Christmassy as humanly possible. Not for the benefit of the PLO sleeper agent in our architecture team although he will be pleased but more because its my party and I don’t like Christmas.
In Bygone years Christmas in an office environment used to be a time of long pub lunches paid for by grateful management, time to bond as a team, to buy each other presents and if your luck is in or you have a spare fiver a ten minute knee trembler in the stationary cupboard with Janet the bike from accounts, all before going home to get ready for the big gratis evening dinner dance, partners welcome.
Christmas isn’t even called Christmas anymore, the ‘Festive period’ is no longer about peace and good will to all men (sexist statement) nor is it about management making that extra effort to make staff feel appreciated and included. It’s all about making sure your dates don’t slip, projects still march inexorably forward and people who know what they are doing are on call over the holidays to assist our offshore friends. As for the knee trembler with Janet well, the stationary cupboard has been rearrnaged into a windowless office with 8 desks crammed into it and even if it wasn’t Janet and her Yule tide duties are now being carried out by someone called Ranjeet in India, at least the post it note ordering part is anyway.
All in all celebrating Corporate Christmas is crap (alliteration mega streak!) its more about making sure work isn’t effected and minority groups aren’t in some way offended, not that any of the ‘minority’ individuals I work with care, the cynical amongst us might say its our paranoid directorate three friends keeping themselves in work and I would have to agree.
All that said at least my boss will be pleased that his year and probably slightly suspicious as I have for once decided to tow the company line, embrace our mission statement and ethos and pull in the same direction as management – in other words I have arranged for our department Christmas to be at our local curry house! Pint of Kingfisher anyone?

from left to right, A, B, S, G

from left to right, A, B, S, G

Change is good, change is progress, change is evolution (unless you are one of those sandal wearing religious nutters or Sarah Palin) change is what differentiates the human race from the single celled amoeba that once crawled from the primordial slime and is currently inhabiting my boss’s chair.
Change is wonderful unless you work here and then change is viewed rather like the general public see Wind Farms, a great idea unless they are doing it too close to where you live and it ruins the view from your garden!
In fact change is viewed with such suspicion that we have a special dedicated team whose sole role in life (life at work anyway) is to scrutiny anything vaguely related with change and publicly crucify anyone who steps vaguely out of line. Not only is Special Directorate four of the Thought Police tasked with tracking change (using Aeronautical code words to confuse the rest of us) they have also been known to take on menial tasks for other more sinister departments, things like sniffling round the office after everyone has left to make sure that no-one has not followed ‘process’ or been thinking for themselves.
Pretty important stuff in somewhere as Orwellian as here and you would assume staffed by the brightest and the best of what remains after operation ‘if it moves offshore it and if it doesn’t kick it till it moves and then offshore it’ Reader, I know that in your minds eye you have conjured up a picture of sharply dressed FBI style agents with dark glasses, their names on proper coffee mugs, faded newspaper clipping of their good deeds proudly displayed on their cubicle walls and a penchant for shouting ‘GOOOODAMMMIT NO!’ when really vexed.
Well you couldn’t be more wrong – discard Moulder and Scully and replace them with Mouldy and Scullery and you would be nearer the truth, this shower have so much in common with the cast from ‘allo ‘allo that they get asked to sign autographs and appear at fan club events. Slip on shoes are de rigour (lace ups are for bigger boys) sharp suits have been replaced with George from Asda and the dark glasses actually come with a white stick and a dog. Gone are the newspaper clippings and in their place a proudly displayed dry bed chart (with lots of black stars) and a 10 metres silver swimming certificate.
At this point ladies and gentlemen I would like to point out that Rene’s café (as the change office is known) is as about as far away from my sterile and business like desk in my office as it is possible to get without crashing Incredible Hulk style through the wall but given the choice between the animalistic grunting, shrill cries, snuffling noises and all pervading stench of week old tena lady pants that seem to always be emanating from the special needs corner and spending time at the morgue like North Korean mental hospital that is my cubicle then interaction and a bit of a laugh with the Change Monkeys wins every time!

You know who you are, keep up the good work!


In life there are constants that are just part of life, inalienable things we can’t change. We’ll all die someday (apart from the Queen Mother who is currently on location in Kurdistan filming Terminator 5), we all pay taxes (to a man who can’t even be arsed to match his eyebrows and hair!) and in a large office environment you can guarantee that if you prowl the corridors as much as I do then atleast once a day you will turn a neon lit corner to discover a crying girl..
Crying girls come in all shapes and sizes, some can be weeping hysterically, their anguished cries echoing around like the mating cry of some primordial swamp creature, others might just be dabbing away at their red watery eyes with a tissue and one or two might even be tearing out their own hair and flagrating (which is very different to fellating) themselves with a sharpener coffee stirrer.
The crying girl might be alone, shoulders slumped and head down alone in her misery, she might be being comforted by a coven of friends (the technical name for a group of women which contains atleast one who is in tears is a coven) or she might be hissing into a mobile phone trying to pretend to all and sundry that the conversation is work related when she is clearly asking her ex bestist friend how she could snog her boyfriend Dwayne behind her back.
I should feel sorry for crying girls after all its part of our human programming and socialisation to react to crying children and sniffling women in an instinctively protective way but I just can’t bring myself to feel anything other than a mild sense of smugness born from the fact that someone is having a marginally worse day than me, does that make me a bad person? if you worked here you’d understand……
There are two main reasons I can’t bring myself to care (three if you include the fact that your average criers are po faced lank haired fat fishwives who look like they need a good wash!) the first I think can be summed up by the fact that familiarity breeds contempt, if you walked past people being set on fire every day on the way to the office the first time it would be horrifying and would haunt you for years!, the fortieth time it would just be part of the scenery (albeit part of the scenery that screams, twitches and smells like roast pork)
The second reason why I can breeze past them without a sideways glance is that I assume (this assumption is based on the few times I have been involved in the details of a crying situation) the reason for tiny tears is generally a combination of the mundane, the irrelevant and the non sensical and even if I did ask if i could be of assistance any coherent answer they could force out between anguished gasps would only solicit the response ‘is that all, get a grip woman!?!’
I don’t think I am being too contentious when I say crying is a tactic, its a weapon, not in the same way that a cruise missile or a lacrosse stick is a weapon but wielded by an expert it can be just as devastating as a pike (not the fish!) to the face. In the past I have been in the untenable position of being forced to reprimand a female member of staff for a totally justifiable reason (she poisoned a colleague with antifreeze) and half way through my considered, constructive and reasonable diatribe she turned on the water works and stormed off, just as I had her bang to rights. In that position what can I do? call her back and continue the bollocking (and forever more be known as heartless) or let it go and pretend I had finished anyway…….
Now this option isn’t readily available to most men, speaking personally even if i could open those tear ducts at will I’m not sure I’d want to look that pathetic in front of other people, the old hunter gatherer caveman instinct kicks in, after all I doubt very much that Cro-Magnon man could be found sobbing over his brontosaurus steaks least someone less pansy like beat him over the head with a stick and stole his designer flint trainers. I think this highlights an important point, over the years the male equivalent of crying has become somewhat extinct, I refer of course to good old physical violence. Using Mr. Cro-Magnon again as an example, if you took him aside for being late to work and demanded an explanation he’d either stuff the pointy end of a deer antler somewhere very uncomfortable or beat you to death with the soggy end of a freshly torn off limb (previous owner, you!)
Bottom line I think that in bygone eras men had the advantage (rape and pillage style) where the strong took what they wanted from accountants, middle management and others too weak to fend for themselves (note: Feminists I have kept these victim groups gender non specific) but the worm has turned and our victims, we shall call them Bernadette, Claudette and Ladette are now the ones holding the metaphorical cudgel, bludgeoning us men down with discrimination laws , bullying statutes, harassment claims and talk of periods……..