Thursday, April 28, 2011

Whirl's Ultimate Official Insider Guide To The Royal Wedding

Come back tomorrow for more ultimate official insider coverage of the greatest event of the century...

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Evil Editor Is Five

In an infinite cosmos it’s almost inevitable that cruel, fat, heartless, muttonchops-sportin’, dreamer-crushin’, muffin-bustin’, stud-pumpin’, reality checker checkin’, slush exterminatin’, Grisham-enpooperatin’, query-witherin’, weredingo-tamin’, Varmighan-enthrallin’, agent-evisceratin’ hunks of cerebrally radiant manhood such as Evil Editor should court scorn, anger and FURY FURY FURY from disenchanted writers the world over.

But not in this galaxy. Not today.

Fools that we are — humans, baboons, crustaceans all — we simply can’t get enough of that ‘ole loveable bundle of mischief as he celebrates his fifth blogeeversary.

Five years!

Wow, that’s something!

In Cat Years, that’s thirty five!

In Gnat Years, the guy’s an immortal!

Go and wish him a happy birthday here.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Eggs Suspended In Mid-lay Up The Backside Of Easter's Chicken

This may be my last blog post for a while — not because I’m dying or giving up blogging or suffering from a gamut of huge cranial pustules from whose leathery skin winged creatures will undoubtedly burst, you understand, but the onset of Easter brings with it the misery of Conference Season and I must away to a secluded hellhole, there to mingle with others of my kind in an effort to boost our mutual professionalism.

In that respect, my slide along the double helix of Christ’s last moments and the final hours of multiple Cadbury’s Creme Eggs is all set to mirror the passage of a caged elephant (possibly like Dumbo — or, since I’m trying to elicit sympathy here, Dumbo’s mother) through Blackpool’s sunny streets on a scorching July afternoon.

Beyond the iron bars: such splendours!

Yet here in my converted Ford Transit van: merely an old Star Trek duvet cover and a heap of my own poo!

(Brief digression: after my grandad died, my Blackpool-crazy grandma took me on holiday to said “South of France of The North West”. My abiding memory of the place is that you couldn’t walk more than fifty feet without stepping in a heap of donkey shit. So if I were a caged elephant, maybe I’d be better off being cruelly wheeled through somewhere like Skegness or Great Yarmouth to spare me the indignity of feeling trapped between the devil and the deep blue sea with only the squeals of a flailing trunk directed at a barren and uncaring universe to serve as a record of my plight).

This is not to say that where I’m going isn’t pleasant, or that I’m not looking forward to shared muffins and brainstorms with the cream of the nation’s gibbering homonculi, but I’d much rather be sat at home chilling by the barbecue with Girly of Whirly and Son of Whirl — even if Mother of Girly of Whirly pays a visit to brush up on her ritual persecution techniques using me as a surrogate me.*

* This is how pecking hens get to kill two birds with one stone while preserving the malevolent avian population.

So — while I may get out to visit your blogs over Easter and post the odd frippery on BumBook, I can’t think there will be much activity here for the next week or so (unless there’s a drunken punch-up or synchronised abseiling Bono lookalike attack).

All of which means, have a lovely Easter — and come back pronto for my “privileged access” Royal Wedding coverage (unless it’s rained off or Osama Bin Laden blows everybody up).

Friday, April 15, 2011

Quadriceps Ahoy

I’d set today aside to wear a pair of shorts.

Other things were scheduled, of course, but all with the wearing of shorts at their epicentre.

So: a whirl of writing, cooking, cleaning, admin and miscellaneous phone calls, all circling like electrons round the comforting nucleus of a pair of khaki shorts.

Only three problems.

First, the button had fallen off my shorts and I couldn’t be arsed to find a replacement and sew it back on.

Second, it’s way too cold for any of that nonsense.

Third (and most important), I changed my mind anyway.

What possessed me to want to lounge about the place like a louche surfer boy? Far better to don a pair of sensible slacks and stride from room to room looking casual-yet-efficient — and (according to the postman) personable. To be honest, I suspect my postman is a little short of female company in the evenings. The tiny wad of post he handed over this morning could easily have been slipped through the letter box without the need to ring the doorbell three times while praying, half prone, on the doormat (and I know this because I saw him through the curtain). Perhaps he’s figured out I’m a pre-op transvestite — which reminds me, I must ring the clinic.

I mention all of this because unless you live in some far flung part of the world whose days and nights and months and years are laid out according to the Dwarven Cheese Cycle, it’s the end of the week in a few short hours and it may be that what seemed like the best-laid plans on Monday morning are now in tatters, like the skull ‘n’ crossbones of an unfortunate pirate ship after a raid on galleon throbbing with Danny La Rue cyborg clones.

So — if it’s all gone tits up for you, console yourself with the thought that poor old Whirl never got to wear his shorts even though he badly wanted to, and the whole sorry affair was self-inflicted.

The “someone less fortunate than yourself” isn’t always me — only today, it is.

Hope that makes everyone feel a lot, lot better...

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

When Mobility Becomes An Abomination

I hate how Mobile Dog Grooming has found its way into Yellow Pages.

In the olden days, of course, Yellow Pages was strictly for professions such as plumbers and washing machine repair people and circus strongmen who could rip a telephone directory in two and help you out with any villains who needed roughing up.

As for dogs, I can’t recall them doing anything in my youth other than bounding down the street shitting everywhere, attacking small children and transforming clothing and upholstery into unconvincing simulacra of their miserable moulting selves.

Such a shame God begat the French.

And somewhere inbetween begatting baguettes and a pathological hatred of American cultural imperialism, the French begat all manner of accessory canine ponciness, up to and including dog clothing, dog haircuts, dog manicures and dog bloody dog dog dog.

All of which means that every Wednesday morning the “Groomobile” pulls up in front of the house opposite with its weird Mr Whippy style barking chime and awaits the shabby blob of cack-encrusted fur loved by my neighbours but far from loved by YT.

Said creature then lumbers merrily inside like a brainwashed toddler visiting Santa’s grotto — only with less of the brain and considerably more of the grot. Shame there isn’t a Groogroomobile.

Presumably, there’s a glut of sophisticated pooch pampering machinery tucked away behind the driver’s seat: whirling scrubbers and buffers, scented shampoo sprayers, flea sensitive tweezers on springs, poo pluckers, nail polishers, chocolate bone dispensers, dog-shaped vibrating massage baskets, hair trimmers, whisker shiners and everything a cherished family pet could ever wish for.

Or maybe there’s just a convicted paedophile with a jar of Vaseline and a toilet brush.

Point is, where the hell did all this come from? Isn’t it enough that there are two dog grooming parlours within walking distance? And rain practically every day from June to bloody June? Poodle parlours are a stupid enough idea in their own right without putting wheels on them and driving them in the direction of my street. And what kind of poodle parlour boasts that it’s “also for cats?” I wouldn’t be surprised if my neighbour has her hair done while she’s waiting for the dog to be de-wormed.

“Now offering Hopi Ear Candle’s!!!”*

* No beagles.

I’m almost tempted to fabricate the dog equivalent of Sock Monkey and book an appointment with the Groomobile just so I can have it out with whoever presumes to hawk it about town as “the convenient way to groom your pet”.


Saturday, April 9, 2011

Let There Be Gravy

It’s been a frantic week in the news, with speculation rife on matters of great import.

Will Steve Coogan play Saif Gaddafi in the forthcoming film, Carry On Bombing?

Will Wayne Rooney ever become a modern day Eliza Doolittle under the tutelage of Prince Harry and Chris Ewbank?

Will Kevin Whately submit to nip and tuck plastic surgery and replace Hathaway as his own much maligned sidekick in a future series of Lewis?

And, of course — who will win Whirl’s gravy?

I can now confirm that the answers to my 3rd Bloggiversary Quiz have been checked and verified, neatly ironed and laid out like the Seven Dwarves’ underpants prior to the gusset examination scene Disney cut from the movie to make Snow White seem less of a prig, and — drum roll, fanfare, Red Arrows flypast — I am pleased to reveal the worthy winner.

But first, here is the inevitable roll call of the people who bummed out dismally, mumbled into a feedback-ravaged microphone in an empty room on a distant star.

Fairyhedgehog scored 2, Sylvia batted 1, Simon Kewin hit 2, Evil Editor managed 2 in spite of not even trying to answer most of the questions, Moonrat came top of the bottom with 0 along with JJ — leaving AA to come top of the side with a slightly different means of getting 100% wrong answers — Jinksy bowled a 1, and Dave Fragments broke his Abysswinksback Quiz Duck by wrestling to the ground a perfectly respectable 3.

(The answers, by the way, are 1c 2c 3a 4a 5c 6c 7d 8c)

All of which leaves one or two people unaccounted for — the people Sock Monkey referred to as “the clowns”.

Despite his generous offer of a drawing of a hat, Peter Dudley was deemed to have cheated and bottom spankers have been dispatched.

Similarly, JaneyV’s remarks about jam were treated as infantile frippery but since the bottom spankers had already been sent out to deal with Peter, the Mule of Drool has been untethered and packed off on a train to Whitterville.

Also falling foul of Sock Monkey’s rulemeistery was Sarah Laurenson, who thought she could get lucky by plumping for C for every answer. As it turned out, she could have been very lucky indeed and WON with a top score of 5. However, she might equally have gone with B and scored ZERO. So, batten down the hatches, missus, for Cap’n Pokey & His Hip Hop Prod-U Orchestra is on its way over.

All of which leaves the winner.

Scoring a genuinely amazing 4 correct wrong answers was...Old Kitty!!!

Congratulations — and prepare for gravy.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

On The Couch With Sock Monkey

WO: Morning.

SM: What the hell are you doing here? You’re not booked in for a session.

WO: Just thought I’d see how the judging was going.

SM: The what?

WO: The judging. You know, for my contest? The gravy?

SM: *blank simian look, like a fish that’s just swallowed another fish and doesn’t even realise it*

WO: Don’t tell me you didn’t get my email...

SM: Oh, yes — that. I presumed it was a prank.

WO: What’s pranky about a 3rd Bloggiversary Celebration?

SM: I’ve told you before, it exposes you as a talentless narcissist, a borderline psychotic intent on flaunting his myriad psychological problems — and with the whole gravy thing you play right into your own unwitting hands.

WO: Not so — I was wearing rubber gloves when I wrote out that last post.

SM: What?

WO: Very squeaky on the keys but not a dribble of Bisto splashed the keyboard.

SM: Now you’re being facetious.

WO: Is that one level up from narcissistic? I don’t remember...

SM: So you still want me to judge this thing, right?

WO: I’d be honoured.

SM: What’s wrong with Girly of Whirly?

WO: You want a list?

SM: Okay then — that son of yours?

WO: You’re passing up a list for a database of some vast alien culture?

SM: I see.

WO: Lucky you — I reel.

SM: No need to ask about Mother of Girly of Whirly, I suppose?

WO: No. And thanks for reminding me.

SM: Don’t mention it. Your hair suits the spiky look.

WO: So — will you do it?

SM: It’ll cost you.

WO: Do you take gravy? It was on 2-for-1 in Cheep-o-Mart.

SM: Under normal circumstances, I’d be utterly offended by such an offer but it just so happens I’m preparing a culinary treat later tonight and your gravy would save me a trip out to the supermarket in the rain. Don’t furrow your brow like that — it’s a fur thing.

WO: Brilliant! I’ll drop the gravy by this afternoon, along with the answers and the judging guide.

SM: The judging guide?

WO: A few people have cheated and one or two haven’t taken it at all seriously.

SM: Said the narcissistic borderline psychotic.

WO: Ha ha. What are you cooking, just out of interest?

SM: Peaches and cream. It’s not so much cooking as mixing together.

WO: So why the gravy?

SM: I’m allergic to cream.

* oh look, a momentary pause for comic effect *

WO: Should I bring some potatoes?

SM: Yes.

Friday, April 1, 2011

Me Is Has Was 3

Much has been written recently about the decline of blogging in the age of social media — sadly on blogs which people are too busy Twitting and Twatting to read.

But here at Abysswinksback, the spirit of blogging rolls boldly on, like Mick Jagger’s flesh scrunched into a ball and tossed down a hill like a testicle.

To celebrate my third bloggiversary I’ve chosen to refrain from offering up the remains of a butchered quadruped to a dubious masked deity — mainly because my local supermarket now demands such a commitment in order to secure its “bonus points” and I’m fresh out of mongrels.

Instead, I’m hosting a quiz, clad in a glittery suit of purest Bonanza.

The rules are exquisitely simple.

Take a look at the following eight questions and aim to get AS MANY ANSWERS WRONG AS POSSIBLE. To help you, most of the questions have multiple wrong answers and some have no right answers whatsoever. Sock Monkey has compiled a hit list from the wrongest of the wrong and whoever checks in to the comments trail with the closest match of correct wrong answers WINS GRAVY.

Whoever you are, wherever you are in the world — yes, that’s right, YOU COULD WIN GRAVY.

You have until 11.59pm GMT on Monday 4th April to check in, and though you may enter as many times as you wish, only your first clutch of answers will count.

In the event of a tie, names will be drawn from a hat, and in the event of a hat, I’m leaving the building. In the event of this not constituting any kind of event in your estimation, chip in to the comments trail anyway — it’s been a long time since we hit a hundred round here which all sounds too much like the current plight of Jocky Wilson to bear thinking about.

Best of luck to one and all and thanks for stopping by.

No biting, kicking, punching, elbowing, de-spleening or one-on-one disembowelling permitted. Remember: this is good clean fun for people with good clean underwear...


Reptiles are referred to as ‘cold-blooded creatures’ — but why?

a) They are ‘creatures’ and not ‘wardrobes’.
b) While dogs and cats and horses are frequently seen sporting coats, cloaks and other apparel, no-one ever bothers to knit or crochet anything for reptiles.
c) In 854 B.C., a cabal of disenchanted Abyssinian hamsters circulated a rumour about reptiles being “colde, aloof and of leatheryness moste eville” which stuck.
d) Without the label ‘cold-blooded creatures’, 95% of all reptiles would end up in the washing machine on too hot a spin.


Examine, if you have the stomach for it, the photo below.

To which precise spot (or spots) are my Whirly eyeballs immediately drawn?

a) Robin’s wristwatch, far left* — because I always want to know the time.
b) The trio of manly bulges (via a series of ballistic saccades) — because I always try to slip the phrase ‘ballistic saccades’ into every sentence I can (unless I’m asking a policeman for directions to the nearest menswear emporium).
c) The fossilised fish skeleton grafted to Maurice’s stomach, far right — because I’m toying with the idea of having a Pteranodon’s collarbone done on my right leg.
d) Eyes, teeth, assembled bouffantery — in precisely that order — because I’m a human being hardwired to respond to facial features (and bears).

* How I pander to those unable to distinguish Bee Gee from Bee Gee!


In Greek Mythology, where the hell was the cloakroom?

a) Two doors down from Pluto’s spa pool.
b) Halfway up Mount Olympus atop a human pyramid of demihumans.
c) Honolulu — which is why so many Greek heroes were forced to romp around looking spectacularly overdressed.
d) TRICK QUESTION! In Zeus’ original vision, robes were intended to be hung on the Hydra’s multiple heads, but when said novelty coat hook was slain (along with the replacement minotaur thanks to a cunning plot which also saw Priapus sadly sidelined), the phrase just sling it on the settee, love was born — though at the time, of course, the settees in question weren’t from IKEA. And Zeus wasn’t hitched up in an everlasting travail of immortalness with “the missus”.


Why could I never, ever eat a raw oyster?

a) Oysters are like the Borg: swallow one and you have to take on all of them.
b) I’m a tidiness obsessive and the flibbly bits round the edges of their bobbliness make me feel uncomfortable.
c) I’m a vegan — plus, I can’t swim.
d) When I was two years old my Grandad shoved a slug down my throat trying to explain what it felt like to choke on your own tongue during the Battle of the Bulge.


Monkeys descend on your neighbourhood — so “en masse” that the hapless ones close to the ground are crushed to a Proboscis ‘n’ Baboon pulp by the triumphant Bonobos cruisin’ the surf overhead.

You can’t run, you can’t swim, you can’t fly, you can’t teleport — and with no Cliff Richard on hand to inspire you with medlies of his greatest ever hits, what should you dooooooooo?

a) Carry on ironing your underwear (this option is only available to people who habitually press their own skimpies while harbouring delusions of saving the world).
b) Stand behind a sign marked, “Turn Left Here, Crazed Monkeys — For Peanuts, Bananas And Lifelong Excess Simian Romance”, praying their gullibility matches their skill at negotiating a ninety degree turn at speed.
c) Flip open the trapdoor of your 1-Use Nuclear Holocaust Bunker, muttering, “such a waste, such a waste, such a waste...”
d) Take a deep breath, inflate your rubber ring, take another deep breath, inflate your rubber ring again, take yet another deep breath and puff, puff, puff, puff, puff, puff — till a torrent of liquiefied monkeys blots you from all existence thanks to a terrible decision, taken scant weeks ago, to shop for budget beach accessories at Aldi rather than Lidl.


You purchase a mongoose rupturing kit from Tesco — not to finish off your favourite family pet in a fit of supermarket-endorsed cruelty, but simply to burst an unsightly zit on its nostril.

How should you restrain the mongoose while you apply the spike to its angry pustule?

a) Back legs gripped tight between your teeth, like a sheep shearer.
b) Back legs gripped tight between your teeth, like Alan Shearer in a tryst with Victoria Beckham and a B&Q sink unit.
c) Wrap it in foam so you can secure it without squeezing it to death.
d) Don't even try it — dial Freefone Mongoose Restrainers Anonymous right away on 0800 277255.


Which of the following is not a line from my latest project, “Broken Vacuum Cleaner & MacKillop, Investigators of the Downright Weird”?

a) MacKillop made to throw out a stiletto — a feat he might have pulled off as a sporty twentysomething male or jiu jitsu cyborg — but with cellulite slung from his frame in concentric rings dozens deep, he was no match for the forces of anatomical impossibility and he tumbled into a cabinet of frozen puddings.
b) From where MacKillop was standing, it looked like a straight mortal combat scenario: twin leech-possessed humanoid civilians vs morphed pan-weirdishness investigator brandishing three hundred solid grams of tinned fruit cudgel clout.
c) The alien hordes wriggled in seamless unison, despite being split wide open from the rapidfire burst of MacKillop’s enchanted shallots, swung now in increasingly frenzied circles above what remained of his head.
d) Broken Vacuum Cleaner peered over his shoulder, his flex now dangled into the loop of a wry smile. “By Hess’s rotating brush, I think you’re right! We may just have thwarted the spearhead reconnaissance vanguard of some evil intergalactic invasion force.”


Why do gnats never fly into each other as they buzz around in their clouds?

a) They use a form of sonar, like bats — only much, much, much, much smaller.
b) A network of synchronised “mutable polarity” magnets strapped to their abdomens sustains them in a permanent state of attraction-repulsion-attraction-repulsion, complementing the zuzz of their wings with a gentle hum.
c) Gnats are easily shamed by YouTube Bloopers.
d) Actually, they fly into each other all the time but they’re so tiny and insignificant we don’t notice.

So there you have it. Another year, another trussing of brain cells to the yoke of a hog-tied ass. Apologies to anyone stopping by looking for kilts or messiah-shaped birth marks — but stick around through April and beyond as delights are revealed like go-go dancers flung from balloons. Or something like that.