Friday, December 30, 2011

New Year New Danglies

Quite how Father Time got himself involved in an annual ritual alongside a new born baby without being locked up for paedophile crimes against humanity, I have no idea.

All I know is, the old guy with the beard has taken a number of disturbing liberties under cover of the bulldozer moving all the heaps of festive chocolate from one end of my living room to the other and the sighs of relief following the departure of irritating extended family members, most notably killing my laptop and iPod and the turbo switch on the tumble dryer.  Sad but true, it looks like I shall be forced to spend some of my Christmas money on replacement electrical goods rather than the full Lady Gaga transvestite makeover I had planned for the opening weeks of January.*

* As it turns out, I’d have been a few grand short of the Full Gaga even if the Father Time had failed to destroy my stuff, so maybe I was being a little optimistic.  Looks like the bearded one has spared me the toss up between an Andy Murray and three and a half Ken Clarkes.

The more you think about it, the more the whole Father Time / Weird Annus Dribblis Baby arrangement seems a little far-fetched.  I still have trouble with the whole Jesus and Mary thing, not to mention Brian Eno and Brian Ferry.  Call me a dumbo, but I can’t see any mother figure presiding over this annual rebirth.  Maybe she’s elsewhere, dropping sprogs every December 31st only to have them kidnapped and transported to a distant dimension by an old git who, for the past million zillion millennia, hasn’t once got the Philishave he put on any of his Christmas lists.  It must be sad for that mother figure, shambling namelessly in the void between hope and pelvic thrust, especially if she knows about us lot, swanning around at her expense, buoyed by the bonny bounce of a bright new year.

Maybe if we all went for an Andy Murray tranny op, Father Time could be persuaded to stay away for a few years.  That way, the nameless mother figure could get to spend a some time with her kids and experience the joys of a fledgling cosmos bristling with every promise of tomorrow.  As for us, being stuck in limbo for a while might not be very much fun, but assuming the mantle of a grumpy Scottish stubble grower would work wonders for persuading ourselves that it really wasn’t happening to us.

So to hell with it!

The iPod can wait!

Anyone else game for a little sacrifice in order to help a nameless mother figure in another dimension?  If you’re short of shekels, a single Ken Clarke might do the trick...

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

2011's Last Slugs

The days between Christmas and New Year always seem to me to be something of a muddly kind of nothing.

You can’t really listen to carols any more and Shakin’ Stevens is even further off limits than he was prior to the 25th — and yet it’s not quite time to plan ahead with all seriousness and contemplate the forthcoming year.

So, as the last of the bubble ‘n’ squeak vapours blend into the whispery pre-2012 air, there’s a slug afloat on gelatin feel about the place...

Friday, December 23, 2011

Eve Eve Huzzara!

There’s been much talk on the Twitoblogofriendotwatowtfoshutthefuckuposphere about today being “Christmas Eve Eve”, as if somehow we’ve all only just discovered that’s what it is.

Whatever you choose to call today (and I’ll settle for Friday 23rd every time), it’s pretty much the last opportunity for getting in the last of the presents and the food for all the feasts — unless you’re a deranged enough sort to be leaving everything till tomorrow, in which case, best of luck to you as you battle to surmount the human pyramid of warring consumers in the frozen veg section of Asda armed with tinsel-covered machetes handed out by the security staff...

So I’m spending the afternoon catching up on the last of the seasonal necessities, like ironing the turkey and ensuring none of the coins in the Christmas pudding are Euros.  Maybe I’ll have the odd mince pie, maybe I’ll sink half a bottle of whisky and a few chocolate bars — I dunno.  Today I shall lounge and flounce like a man of seasonal leisure, tying up loose ends and magicking up the spirit of Christmas before things start cracking off big time tomorrow with the arrival of Mother of Girly of Whirly’s Mobile Tomb of Misery and Destruction dead on the witching hour of twelve noon.

It only remains for me to thank my visitors old and new for what has been a pretty shitty year.  Hopefully, with Gadaffi and Kim Jong-Il both gone, 2012 will bring us a better class of crazed dictator to distract us from our own stupidity in all matters social, moral and financial.  If we’re especially lucky, one of them might get to be US President.

In the mean time, here’s a re-tread from the archives...

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Chef Off

You can’t switch on the telly at the moment without being greeted by some celebrity chef or another grinning from the screen with both hands shoved up a glazed fowl’s arse.

If it’s not Jamie Oliver spitting out details of a pukka chestnut jus recipe from between his botoxed tripe lips, its Ainsley Harriot singing the praises of gander sebacious gland oil, high on a pint and a half of Kovonia, with his giant bald head glistening beneath the studio lights like the sealed glans of a neutered giant.

As for Antony Worral Thompson’s stuffing, I can only hope that some time soon a gang of suitably unpleasant have-a-go heroes will see to it.

It’s not that I claim chapter-and-verse knowledge of all things festive and culinary, nor even that my appetite for recipes fresh and exciting has wilted in the mistletoe heat — I just wish all these celebrity chefs would bog off to a secret hideaway and cannibalize each other till only their mushroom hats remained.

Then, maybe we can have some serious telly in the run-up to Christmas, like hairstyling tips c/o Little Mix and Jeremy Clarkson drowning a hapless lesbian in a swimming pool full of his own froth...

Friday, December 16, 2011

Grandad's Special Festive Android Bonanza

Here's a festive short story for you all, to accompany your yuletide glee as you sit around the fire burning your nuts.

There's a few f-bombs, I'm afraid — saw afraid, as it happens.

I'm indebted to the delightful Fairyhedgehog for inspiring me to finish this one.  Had it not been for her latest blog post, this story might have remained in a drawer, half-formed like a prototype for Beyonce's next pair of buttocks.

Her story is here.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Surviving An Austere Christmas

According to all records of hope sting, most of us are now set to enjoy something of an “austere Christmas”.

This is not to say that Santa is about to bypass us all in his tempered miracle zeal, because as we all know [kid spoiler approacheth], Santa is, in fact, us.  Sad but true, it’s just how it is, here at the flobbly end of 2011.

So as we all grapple with limited means to rival a chrysalis-bound butterfly beached in the frost, what can be done this year to guarantee that our stifled generosity can rise to the occasion and deliver tangible festive output fit for all the family?

Let’s start with the basics.

Tucked away in every family shed is one of these:

According to my DIY-minded friends, this chunk of workmanly kit has been deployed over the centuries to assist in the erection of more cathedrals and in-home stair lifts than most of us have had hot dinners.  Now it’s time to shave our figgy puddings with it, reducing them in size to slightly smaller versions of themselves and saving up the shavings for years to come.  In ten years’ time, not only will we have graced the Christmas table with nine pudding-o lites indistinguishable from their full size counterparts, but we’ll have sufficient leftover slices of figginess to create a tenth for free in 2021.

“We hear your logic, Whirl — but do you have any tips to help out families with pets?”

Of course I do.  Everyone is familiar with the idea that a family pet adds value to our limited mortality, ie that having something fluffy and friendly about the place acts as a considerable distraction from the inevitability of our final and crushing demise, particularly if said fluffy and friendly pet is an elephant clad in a giant tea cosy.  Further value can be added to our sense of Christmas occasion by decorating our pets as we do our trees and refrigerators.  So it’s time to festoon the dachshund with a little tinsel, or grace the cat with baubles ‘pon every foot.  Whatever your pet, there’s always an odd scrap of garland or tinsel at the bottom of every box of Christmas decorations that would otherwise lay idle.  It would cost next to nothing to deck out your much-loved pets thusly, and if there are any scowls or yowls of complaint, you might wish to remind them of the terms of the deal, ie that without mankind to feed and water them, most household pets would die a miserable death in a cruel and heartless wilderness.

Note:  For anyone with a tankful of insubstantial shiny flippetyfish, I know it’s kind of tedious, but glitter does actually superglue underwater.

“OK, what about dinner?  Cranberry sauce is soooo expensive.”

Agreed, but if cuts have to be made, why not bash a hardback copy of Roget’s Thesaurus against your nose till it bleeds, and decant a few cupfuls of the red stuff into a reindeer-themed jugette?  Throw a few grapes into the mixture and no-one will notice the Great Cranberry Deception, because the wine you’re serving for dinner will, of course, be Lidl’s own white cider and everyone ought to be too pissed to care.  With so much lipstick about the place from kisses under the mistletoe, no-one will ever see the bruises to your face, and when the good times roll again, you can pass your crooked conk off as an act of aspirational home plastic surgery allied to a dream of meeting your favourite pop star.

“Any tips for a turkey substitute?  Are there cheaper birds, maybe pigeons or sparrows?”

Forget poultry altogether.  It’s time-consuming to fatten birds up and until we find a way of recycling all the beaks and toenails it’s also a massive waste of resources.  Best thing to do is invest in a dozen of the cheapest frozen burgers you can lay your hands on.  The breadcrumb-filled nature of most modern burgers lends itself to infinite malleability once they’re thawed, and with the right artistic wherewithal, a dozen budget burgers can be moulded into a perfectly passable headless, wingless, legless, lifeless lump of festive mock poultry.  Simply sprinkle with feathers from one of Granny’s pillows and hey presto! Oiseau du Jour!

“The fairy lights are costing me a fortune in electricity!  Help!”

It’s true that twinkly lights are an ambient drain on the pocket — especially for those who insist on hosting an animatronic Lapland in their back garden — so it may be time to recall the illuminatory staple of medieval times, ie the candle.  As long as you keep the tree regularly moistened with sprays of water, any arrays of candles slung from it will have next to zero chance of burning down your house.

“Times are hard.  We need Rudolph’s carrot for dinner.  Sorry.”

It’s a shame to play the harsh one when it comes to feeding imaginary seasonal quadrupeds, I know, but for the sake of the kids there’s nothing for it but to bite the weeniest morsel off the tip and throw the rest into the pan.  If the kids are at all concerned about Santa’s publicly-spirited reindeer missing out on a few treats, you could always try reasoning with them.  The worldwide reindeer carrot pot is potentially a vast one, and if we all chip in a little bit, there’s no danger of malnutrition-generated antler rot.  In actual fact, going with the present arrangement of personally feeding individual reindeer is a recipe for unwarranted obesity and a squandering of the world’s carrot resources.

“It simply won’t be Christmas without the new festive Cliff Richard CD of shamelessly sugary wank.”

Oh yes it will.  Save your money and sing a medley of Cliff’s finest as a family while you wait for the brussels sprout fug of bum gas to dissipate.  “Saviour’s Day” really comes into its own when there’s more than the usual stimulus to gag.

“Are you absolutely sure that whole budget burger mock-turkey thing will fool everyone?  My parents’ folks are coming, and in addition to not being born yesterday, they were both born in the thirties when this whole austerity deal was the norm?”

The solution here is to glaze with gruel — and while they’re drying off, remind them that without your charity they could be spending Christmas in a care home.

"But what about aunties and uncles?  Cousins and nephews and stuff?  It’s such a lot of people to buy for!"

Fortunately, all those Somali pirates have clubbed together to offer a home kidnap service.  For a modest fee you can arrange to have extended family members incarcerated for the duration of the festive season, ‘missing, presumed dead’.  Upon their return in the New Year, all you need to do is inform them that your Christmas budget has already been spent on discounted burgers for responsible family members who successfully managed not to be kidnapped, and the whole present buying conundrum can be bypassed like a dream.

If anyone has any further tips, the comment trail awaits your cost-cutting suggestions.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Monday, December 5, 2011

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Saturday, December 3, 2011