Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Attempting To Convey My Getting a Cat in an Extremely Forced Sporting Metaphor; More on the Cat; Further Cat News; Cat Obsession Takes Full Hold

My nil-nil draw of a pet life is about to be shattered, as the referee (the Mayhew Animal Home, dressed in black and blowing a whistle) has awarded me a penalty kick in the shape of a two-year-old moggy (pictured left). We're collecting the penalty kick, er, cat on Saturday.

Ok, I give up on the laboured metaphor. We're getting a cat. Whoop. A big prize to anyone who can come up with a good name for the cat. Although be warned: the prize is one of those intagibles like the satisfaction of a job well done or the feeling of contentment on having named a cat. Sorry. All my money's going on litter and gonks for cats to play with from now on.

I'll probably write this blog from the point of view of the cat from now on. But not in a good way. No. In a way that lists what I did all day. And be assured that if my understanding of cats gleaned from the book on cats I've just read is any any way accurate, cats do not spend much time writing about the virtues of WD40.

Yeah, I thought that'd get you.

Anyway, all I have to do now is worry about the perceptions of men who own cats. Yes, those perceptions. I'll compensate by calling the cat Killer or Fang and taking up a manly hobby like carpentry or violence. And then posting pictures of myself on the Men With Cats page (Warning: will confirm your opinions of men who like cats and then some).

In order to pass the Herculean cat adoption tests the Mayhew Animal Home has put in our way, I had to get a letter confirming that our landlord both allowed us to have cats and wouldn't use their spare keys to sneak in and put sellotape on cats while they slept. In my conversation with my landlord, I was saying that she lived close to the gigant-o-normous Colney Hatch Lane Tescos, and that I could pick up the letter and go food shopping and thereby 'kill two babies with one stone'. I didn't dwell on it, but I'm not sure that it's the sort of thing you want to hear from someone who's about to become the guardian of a cat life. Come to think of it, it's definitely not the sort of thing you want to hear from someone who's going to come round to your house to pick up the letter. She did appear a bit nervous while writing the letter, but I think that was Microsoft Word's fault. I really have no idea why I said it, but now that I've devoted so much time to it, it's all the more likely to come out again.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

WD40; Who I've Nearly Killed; and The Guardian Recognises That I'm Right

I have spent the last few days feverishly spraying just about everything in sight with WD40. It somehow brings me immense satisfaction to have doors glide open and shut with the effortless ease of a Jesus in ballet shoes tip-toeing on a calm pond. Every day I think of more things that would be improved with just a little squirt of WD40 on them. However, I'm not nearly obsessed enough to join the WD40 Fan Club. It is taking all the willpower I possess not so sign up, especially when there's apparently two thousand uses for WD40 listed on the site. That's

  1. Lubricate front door

  2. Lubricate living room door

  3. Lubricate kitchen door

  4. Lubricate back door

  5. Lubricate Shed door...

Would someone who isn't me please sign up and tell me what it's like inside? I don't trust myself not to become completely obsessed and spend the rest of my life posting poetry about the amazing properties of WD40 on WD40 chatrooms.

Similar to the Crouch End blog I See Famous People, I could set up a blog detailing all the celebrities I've nearly harmed. I nearly killed Francis Wheen today. He was trying to cross Upper St while I was cycling down it, and my precise series of thoughts were 'Oh, that's Francis Wheen. Or is it spelt Ween? He's looking a bit jowlier and greyer than when I last saw a picture of him. I should stop and tell him that I really enjoyed his book. Now, what was it called? How Gibberish Conquered the World? Was that it? No, it wasn't, was it? Oops, just sped past him at great speed, narrowly avoiding him. Oh, yes, it was How Mumbo-Jumbo Conquered the World. That was it. Ah, now I'm about half a mile away from him."

I also may or may not have seen Zane Lowe, but as I couldn't be sure it was Zane Lowe, I couldn't be absolutely certain whether to harm him or not.
At last the leading left-leaning broadloid newspaper gives me my due. A search of The Guardian's website for the phrase "Jim McKenzie is right" (
) does indeed bring up a page with the unarguable statement "Jim McKenzie is right" on it. Unfortunately, what I'm right about is specifically that the horrendous Roxy's nightclub in Sheffield became an evangelical church, and it's in the over-by-over live cricket commentary on the India v England Test, rather than, say, an comment piece by Polly Toynbee on Why Jim McKenzie is Right About Everything. It's a start though. Get writing, Polly.

Friday, March 10, 2006

On Accusing My Girlfriend of Being Rude About Other People on the Internet

When seeing a post on that said about Stewart Lee:

He's not funny, or pushing any boundaries. He's just dull. Laura 05.10.05

I thought, aha! I bet I know which Stewart-Lee-disliking-Laura who saw him on his Autumn 2006 90s Comedian tour this was. And I sent my girlfriend an email in no uncertain terms accusing her of writing this and what had she got to say for herself, eh?

Of course, she denies it. But what are the chances of there being two Lauras (a name ranked 92nd most popular for girls born in 2001) who saw Stewart Lee around this time? Eh? OK, probably quite high. Let's say about 1000 people saw him at his Soho Theatre shows then, and probably about 650 of these were boys, because, let's face it, nerdy deadpan scatalogical highbrow humour is something that appeals to boys more. Let's say that 3 or the 350 women were called Laura. This leads me to believe (based on a statistically insignificant base, with numbers made up off the top of my head, on a Friday afternoon when I've had quite a tiring day at work) that a shocking 2/3 or more of Lauras actively dislike Stewart Lee, with some even going to the lengths of posting things on the internet about it, which I believe is some kind of difficult and technical thing involving computers and code and hacking. If I were Stewart Lee (and the chances are that I aren't), I would be less worried about Christians hating him than Lauras hating him.

Or Christian Lauras. I'm going to sit and make up statistics about Christians now. I'll probably be some time...

Expect there to be a rash of articles on Monday morning proclaiming '96% of All
Church-Going Christians Are Called Laura (and That's Just the Boys!!!)'.

Enjoy your respective weekends, freeeeks.

Thursday, March 02, 2006

Postcards to Dead Bands. Wooooo.

A curious fringe benefit of me getting rid of all my CD cases (I can see you already reeling off the obvious ones. Stop it. You're embarrassing me. Let's just say there's lots of benefits, and you can stop your whirring brain whirring) is that I found lots of those little postcards that you can complete and send back and the record company will then send you lots of information about that artist. Now, I've saved all the ones that have got postage paid, so if you want me to start receiving junk mail on any of the following artists, or just cost the record company some money, let me know and I'll fill in the card and send it off. What really intrigues me is what will happen when I write in requesting information on bands that no longer exist. Will the helpless record company stooge (or person working at 3 Alveston Place in Leamingon Spa, which is the epicentre of this particular niche marketing area) look at the poor scruff requesting information about the still very listenable to in parts Ultrasound who folded after their endearingly overblown debut failed to see millions and see Tiny, their not-a-supermodel-by-any-stretch-of-the-imagination singer, become a jet set rock 'n' roll star, and take pity, and write back a note saying that sadly, owing to the vagaries of this damn industry, they were cruelly neglected, damn it all to hell. Or perhaps it will be the secret password to an alternative music industry that has been kept hidden in a flotilla of large ships of the Kent coast, where Ultrasound are recording their 3rd album, and they'll be doing a well-advertised tour of medium-large venues throughout the UK in the Spring. Or perhaps it'll just get thrown in the bin. It's a risk I take on your behalf.

  • Belle & Sebastian (who have moved to a bigger record label since this card was produced, which will no doubt cause a sucking of teeth when they receive this card, a-ha!)

  • Another Jeepster card for Belle & Sebastian

  • Bernard Butler

  • Billy Bragg

  • Finley Quaye (sorry. Maybe you could write insults about me on the card. After all, I was fool enough to buy this album. And later buy his second album for £1.99)

  • Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds

  • Placebo (I once served a big burly bloke when I worked in Our Price who came in asking for the place-bo single. I couldn't work out whether to laugh at the idea of this hairy-knuckled hulk boogieing away to the oh-so-forced gender confusion of Brian Molko and co, or to snigger at his mispronunciation. Instead I just told him the release date. Perhaps he became a goth. I've seen it happen. They're not born that way; it's a choice.There was a regular customer who, one Saturday was a nerd, in glasses and a buttoned-up shirt, and the next Saturday had all these piercings and neck-rings and black clothes and make-up. He was into Depeche Mode, which should have made it a less alarming change than it was.)

  • Porcupine Tree (Embarrassing Prog. Oh, deary me. I'm a closet Pink Floyd fan. Boo me.)

  • Radar Records (Who I presume don't exist any more, but who knows?)

  • Radiohead

  • Sparklehorse

  • Supergrass

  • The Auteurs (disbanded! And Luke Haines solo stuff is shit! This card is the last link to when he was good!)

  • Two for the Chemical Brothers. (Presumably one for Tom, and one for the other one, who, for these purposes we'll assume is called Colin)

  • Ultrasound (like what I said before)