Thursday, 28 January 2010

Oh My God! Richard Bacon you confuse me so!

I don't know what to think any more. For years, I despised that brain-vacuum that was Richard Bacon and his late-night Radio 5 show. ('Can you solve the country's economic woes? Tweet us your ideas!' 'Should paedophiles be allowed to live? If so, should they be allowed to ride horses? Call in with your thoughts!').

THEN, he does that sorta cool turn on The Thick of It, doing sort of maybe a parody of himself and even, perhaps, the sort of callers he gets, and he was almost, I had to consider, Ok.

Then he moves to Radio 5's daytime slot, and lots of (otherwise intelligent) radio critics are giving him good reviews, and even I accidentally caught a few minutes of one and it wasn't total shit, so there's a chance, I'm thinking, that he is Ok.

But today it's been a reckless, crazy day of incessant Bacon news that's left me dizzy from the vicissitudes of his actions. FIRST, I'm ready to give him a green light to cruise down You're Ok Boulevard when I read this blog from the New Humanist. It seems that our just-about friend Richard slapped down God-loving monkey Stephen Baldwin (I don't fucking know! Apparently Celebrity Big Brother), particularly over the latter's ideas on creationism. 'I'm no Darwin', Bacon admits, 'but...' and then sets out a few facts that does, in a Radio 5y sort of way, put Baldwin Jr. Jr. Jr. in his place. So much the better, I say.

But just as I was about to sign his invitation to dinner next week, I hear that the Independent has criticised Bacon for his praise of David Cameron. Apparently, he said:
"That's the sort of many we should have leading the country. A bright, intelligent, dynamic, handsome man we really respect and admire who would be a brilliant prime minister."
Shame shame shame, you Tory toss-pot! Well, at least that sorted that.

BUT, just as was tearing up his invitation, I read the rest of the link in a tweet from the Guardian, confirming the Independent's story. Or does it? Apparently, the Indy missed something. What Bacon said, in full:
"I've just started a new job at BBC 5 Live – I've taken over from Simon Mayo at 2pm, Monday through Thursday, and I'm loving it. On my first show, I sat down for an hour-long interview with David Cameron. Don't know if you heard the show, but I know what a lot of you are thinking: 'That's the sort of man we should have leading this country. A bright, intelligent, dynamic, handsome man we really respect and admire who would be a brilliant prime minister.' And it's very kind of you to say so, and I'm very flattered, honestly I am, but I'm happy just doing the show for the time being. But thanks, it really means a lot that you think so highly of me."
So, you see, I don't know WHAT to do. Looks like I'll put that veggie meat roast back on a slow cook, as Bacon's dinner invite might be some time coming yet, but I'll not rule out the idea. If he could only say something really, really rude about George Osborne...

(I know I know. I should have come up with some clever pun on 'veggie meat' and 'bacon'. I just can't be bothered.)

Friday, 15 January 2010

I can't decide which I like best...

I think maybe this one:

Or maybe this one, for it's perfect absurdity:

(click either for a better, larger image. And disseminate widely.)

Either way, I obviously have some unresolved issues with 1980s fashion advertising. Or maybe Cameron just lends himself to it so neatly.

See these and MANY, MANY more, each as brilliant as the last. You can even make your own!

Wednesday, 13 January 2010

Protest prorogation

Stephen Harper needs to eat a big pile of shit. That is my reasonable, measured response to what is happening in Canadian politics right now. So, for my Canadian readers reader, this (a little uncomfortably patriotic) video is for you -- spread the word, protest this nonesense.

For anyone in the UK who sees this, beware: This IS what happens when you give Conservatives even the smallest minority.

Monday, 11 January 2010

Happy New Year!

and happy 100th dropping here in excretera. But let's not get excited: I am probably the world's only blogger who's New Year resolution is to write less in cyberspace, so that I might work in a more concentrated way on 'other projects' (he said, mysteriously), at least temporarily. However, whenever needs must, I will do what needs here, just, hopefully, you know, in a more concise, less time-wasty sort of way.

And if there was ever a cause more in need of a movement from excretera, Britain's snow-flurry-fury is it. I am, after all, Canadian, and therefore omnipotently qualified to explain to you, the poor people of Britain, how to survive the snow. (These are the people who took the Blitz on the chin, as a mere annoyance? I ask myself. Hitler's bombs fine, but a dusting of snow... geez.)

Now I could write volumes and volumes on how to drive in the stuff (DON'T try to go faster when you're wheels are already spinning) how to brake in the stuff ('pump' the brake -- lots of little stops, rather than skidding through one long one) how to walk in the stuff (slide when you walk, with your feet slightly splayed, as if you were skating) how to make the perfect snowball, etc. etc. etc., but that would go against my New Year's resolution. SO, I have to be brief, and address those few concerns that are most making me explode in impotent rage (as I increasingly seem to now. Do they make a Viagra for self-righteous indignation?)

And so, first, it's Stop Whining. Ok. Good.

Now, stop throwing so much grit all about. You wonder why you're running out of the stuff? I walked through a mud bath on Crookes' high street today. Not wet snow. But mud. I have a grit box across the street from my house and watched, yesterday, as a man tossed 5 spadefuls of grit on the road, where there was no snow, and then took 3 spadefuls of grit to pour around his car, so he could move it forward 3 feet, which he still failed to do. (I went to push - when pushing, let the car rock, forward and backward. That does not mean let it go forward and then pop it into reverse; you will crush the kind man that's helping you, which is less good.)

When I first got a car in this country, my father-in-law made sure that we had a 'de-icer': some toxic spray that was meant to magically melt the snow on your windshield. 'What's wrong with a scraper?' I asked.

And here is the problem: you, people of the UK, think that grit is some magic pixie-dust that will keep all that nasty snow away. You expect there to be a vaccine, a chemical defence against the ice. Nope. What you need is some old fashioned digging. Get on with it. In my part of the world (i.e. Ontario), you are legally obliged to clean the snow from the path outside your home or business, within a certain specified number of hours. And remember, we know snow.

Which leads me to ask this: I heard, a rumour around work, that if someone falls and injures him or herself outside your house and you have done nothing, you are fine, but if you've shovelled the snow from in front of your house and someone falls and injures him or herself, you are deemed responsible for those injuries and could be sued.

Surely that's not right? Tell me that's some Daily Mail reader's tale? Like Council Cancels Christmas! and Immigrants Ate My Dog!.

Don't bother. Just get shovelling.