Unreliable

If you cannae rely on Reliance

Whit can ye do

Cons will be on the skite

And I’ll be on the broo

Oh Reliance they are wonderful

Reliance they are swell

They transport the prisoners

And let them go as well

And when a killer’s on the run

You can always tell

When some bugger’s been freed by Reliance

Royal Bleedin Ascot

Howya

Here I am at Ascot and I have to tell youse it’s bleeding deadly. Sure and I know it says Royal Ascot in the papers but she’s no queen of mine sure she’s not. She’s a nice enough old cow but as far as I’m concerned she sits down to do her business like the rest of us so I’ll be leaving the curtseys to the English. Bleedin eejits.

I got down here yesterday and Jaysus you should see the nick of some of the motts. There’s nothing like a bunch of posh doxies with their drawers on show to make me cacks jump to attention. Sure and they go on about the hats they’re wearing but what the hell are they bothering with that bollix for when there’s diddies on display everywhere? I tell youse there are some right qweer bits o skirt among these rich birds but the apes that are with them are too busy looking for their chins to notice. Feckin eejits.

I just had the one ride yesterday. Horses that is. A nag for Mr Dods in the big sprint. It’s a nice type but yesterday wasn’t one of its days for winning if youse know what I mean. Keep it thereabouts and then be a bit one-paced in the last furlong, don’ t make it too bleedin obvious says the guvnor. Only trouble was there was about 100 bleedin nags in the race and my one was scared shitless. His Gary Glitter was shaking so much it felt liking being on a washing machine on full spin cycle. Sure and does he not bolt off like a Boy Scout being chased by Michael Jackson? I nearly had me bleedin arms pulled out trying to stop the beggar from winning so I did. Still it was worth it and all, Mr Dods gave me a nice little bonus — £500 and a nice homemade steak pie. Lovely.

I tell youse there’s nothing like a runaway horse under your arse to give you an appetite. I went through that steak pie like John Leslie through a virgin then washed them down with a pack of Jaffas and a couple of jars of black. I felt more lardy than Vanessa Felz’s arse but it was nothing that maxi strength diurectics couldn’t cope with. I’d give the bog ten minutes if I was youse.

I got a little whisper for the big race today from the stable lad that gets Frankie his “special protein diet” — expensive stuff it is too on account of how it comes all the way from Colombia. Anyways, this feller tells me that Frankie’s nag doesn’t have a baldy and that all the Sheiks are putting their gold bars on Rakti. Sure and if it’s good enough for Sheik Yermani then it’s bleeding deadly enough for Freddie O’Farrell. Lovely biscuits.

It’ll be a grand dinner for me tonight James and don’t spare the courses. Keep the scran coming till the sauna is ready.

Hungry? I could eat chips from a beggar’s hankie.

See youse at the track.

Fred O’Farrell

Free Jeremy Clarkson!

It’s just not fair, that poor man.

I speak, of course, of Jeremy Clarkson. We live in an age where intolerance will simply not be tolerated and yet poor Jeremy still feels unable to declare his true sexuality. Well, the LLF is here to help. He must be liberated from the petrol-driven shackles that bind him and come out of the closet. Jeremy, it’s OK to have the Communards on your stereo.

Such a shame that we live in a society that forces a man who so obviously prefers the intimate company of other men to hide behind such an unpleasant facade in order to hide his true feelings. Well, Jeremy. We can help.

No more the nasty, butch jeans-and-sports-jacket combo that simply isn’t fooling anyone. Step out in something more fetching, pastel shades, swirls of colour. Someone with legs as long as yours could wear leather; I think you know what we mean.

We’ve seen the way you look at Richard Hammond with a twinkle in your eye. He’s a good-looking boy, no denying, but there must be a reason that someone that annoying gets a job on telly. Cautious and I reckon that there must have been some horrible misunderstanding there. Did you suggest that the show needs a little Dick in a moment of weakness? It’s OK, Jeremy, the LLF understands and supports you.

We’ve both been working on the stockcheck and chatting (only time THAT’S allowed outside the fairtrade coffee bar, let me tell you) and we’ve hatched a plan.

We are here to liberate you from intolerance and fear, we will throw caution to the wind and leave no-one in any doubt of your true self but mixing with all those testosterone charged petrol-heads must be driving you mad, you mustn’t torture yourself in this way. Hell’s Bells, it must get a bit Sheridan at rehearsals.

A career in libraries, that’s the one for you, Jezza. You can help us weed the Nissan Micra manuals from the car maintenance section and we’ll give you your own bike rack. We know you’d rather be in the saddle. Also, working in a profession dominated by women will let you truly find yourself in a non-threatening environment. And the more persons-who-prefer-the-intimate-company-of-persons-of-a-similar-gender-type that we have on the staff, the more tattle-tape totty there is for real men like Cautious and I to enjoy.

Bigot Ron Atkinson

Blimey, can a man not speak his mind these days without the politically correct brigadiers getting all hot under their collars?

Big Ron Atkinson, the working man’s microphonist, said a couple of things he didn’t mean anyone to hear and suddenly the poor bloke’s lost his job. Bleedin ridiculous if you ask me.

Okay, so he shouldn’t have called Marcel Desailly a f***ing lazy ni***r out loud with people listening but he was just making a private comment within the privacy of his own broadcasting booth. It’s hardly his fault it was heard in Dubai and Bahrain. I know he shouldn’t have used the ‘f’ word but it was the heat of the moment and anyways, we’re all grown-ups.

As for this business of calling black people coloured — or is it calling coloured people black? I can’t keep up — well Big Ron is just a man of his time. Look at it this way, he was brought up watching the Black and White Minstrel Show in a time when everything was black and white, there was no colour. Bleedin natural that some of it is going to stuck, innit?

Just because he looks down on black people and thinks it is okay to call them by some quaint old-fashionable names, that don’t make him a racist does it? Bigot Ron is just one of the lads and uses the kind of language that you would find any racist using down the pub of a Sunday afternoon.

When Bigot Ron was manager of West Bromwich Albino he had more black players in his team that anyone else. He wouldn’t do that if he was a racist, now would he? It’s like the old landowners in olden days who brought slaves over from Africa and gave them a job and a roof over their heads. Racists my arse.

Peoples are just too politically corrected these days and you can hardly find a programme on the telly any more where the black chap is the butt of the white man’s jokes. What’s that if not flippin racist?

I tell you this, people go on about Love Thy Neighbour and say how it wasn’t funny but it was a flippin scream. I say bring it back, much better than some of the rubbish comedies they have on today like The Office or EastEnders. And don’t go thinking I’m a racist either, I used to really fancy that black woman that played the wife next door.

Bigot Ron is like me, just a man who speaks his mind. He is like your perfect microphonist because he says things so bleedin dolly that you think to yourselfs, ‘I could do that. I could say something as stupid as that if I had seven pints inside me.’

Now he has said one thing too stupid too far and they want to crucifix him. It’s like that film, The Passion of the Christ. Bigot Ron is Jesus and the politically correct brigadiers are the Romans. Or the Jews, whoever it was. And the ‘f’ word and the ‘n’ word are the nails. And his microphone is the crown of horns. And it’s nowhere near bleedin Easter. Blimey.

Listen, I always say that just because a washer has been used before doesn’t mean it can’t be used again. It can be resurrected and put to good use elsewhere. And if it’s true in plumbing then it’s true in life.

Non-racist Ron will rise again and walk among us once more. I say we should start a campaign. Bring back the Racist One.

Plumb on.

Peter Plumb.

Pining for the fjords

The Accused

Ingvar Kamprad

The charge

That he deliberately and wittingly lures feeble-brained victims to his lair and there wrongfully imprisons them for a very long time, robbing them of their money and throwing them back out onto the street clutching unwanted low-quality items of furniture.

The case for the prosecution

Ladies and Gentlemen of the Jury, the crimes committed by this evil monster defy belief and rightly deserve our vituperation, condemnation and disgust. Had he killed a small child, raped a puppy or defrauded an elderly lady out of her life savings, I might be standing here before you today pleading some mitigating circumstances. Perhaps an unhappy childhood or a traumatic early moment. Perhaps a doomed love affair that had left him sad and bitter. But no. This man, this Ingvar Kamprad, has stepped beyond the pale. Beyond anything that is good and true and decent. Beyond the very boundaries of all we hold dear, of the things that form the very glue and fabric of our society. He is the founder of IKEA.

Let us consider, for a moment, this Ingvar Kamprad.

This is a man who has systematically relieved his victims of not only their hard-earned money but also their taste, their hard-earned leisure time and, most significantly of all, their self-respect. And the pickings have been rich ones. Such has been the extent of this execrable crime that Kamprad was recently announced as the richest person in the world. Just contemplate that for a moment. Feel your very sinews and tendons being wrenched and wrest asunder like an uncooperative little black bolt by the Allen key of Swedish deception. The richest person in the world.

This is a man who traps his victims, countless thousands of them every day, with promises of domestic respect, enhanced storage capabilities and quality workmanship only to herd them around a giant blue and yellow cowshed full of tat with no visible means of escape and sell them things they don’t want and which their house cannot accommodate. The only way out is to go on. And on. And on and on and on. Until the very life essence is sucked out of them by inane babbling about how good that lamp would look on that table we got the last time or how clever that way of storing all of those little things inside that big plastic and canvas cupboard thing is! Subliminal advertising compounds the felony. Half a dozen wine goblets made by a Slovakian lesbian kibbutz from unattractively nasty recycled glass that you know will last two washes in your dishwasher, if you are lucky, suddenly seem like a must-have item. A circular blue rug with less build quality than the brown one that adorns Andrew Neil’s head looks ideal to complement the new wooden floor and outlandish colour scheme in your teenage daughter’s bedroom.

This is a man who is not content simply to rob his victims of their cash. Oh no. He must toy with them, torture them and play tricks with their minds until they succumb to his evil wiles. Announcement. “Customers please note that the average wait at our checkouts is now 40 minutes”. Oh, that’s not too bad, you think. I’ve been here for six hours already and although I’m only buying a bag of twenty tea lights that cost half this in Woolies, well, I’m here now so what’s another 40 minutes.

This is a man who, for every male over the age of forty, has spoiled the very essence of the idea of Sweden. Now I’ve never been to Sweden. And I freely admit that three years ago if I had undertaken a small ad hoc word association experiment involving that country then the words tall, blonde, water, fjords, naked, sex, free, and snow would probably be the first to spring to mind. But oh no. Undertaking that same ad hoc word association experiment in the present day elicits the altogether less attractive epithets of tedious, painful, meatballs, wasted, Sunday and afternoon.

This is a man who flagrantly, and with scant regard for his fellow man, sells cheap and nasty furniture to the lowest common denominator letting her believe that it will gain the respect of her fellow denominators. What is the point? Does any right-minded person really, really think in their heart of hearts that anyone outside of Dennyloanhead is in any way going to be even remotely impressed by a TV and video corner unit that looks like it was made as part of an evening-class woodwork project by Jeremy Beadle or by an art-deco mirror that has all the look and feel of a piece of shiny foil fashioned by an orang-utan with motor-neurone disease? Particularly when, following assembly instructions that were clearly written by a half-wit who was having a bad day, the item in question bears little or no resemblance to the one displayed in IKEA-hell twelve hours previously. Does a burberry cap say “class” anywhere but Coatbridge?

Anyone who has had the misfortune of having to endure the unutterably dull and tedious blue and yellow hell that is IKEA must surely be ruing every stomach-churningly noxious mouthful of plastic Swedish meatball and every buttock-clenchingly agonising pine splinter that have helped line the considerable pockets of this domestic war criminal. Let us mete out to him the justice he so clearly deserves.

The case for the defence

Students could furnish a flat at a reasonable cost.

Verdict

Guilty!

Sentence

That he be taken from this court to a place of execution, commonly known as the IKEA restaurant, and force fed Swedish meatballs in gravy with jam till dead. And may God rest his soul.

Goldenballs

Blimey, I can’t believe all this locomotion about Sir David Beckham and this bit of Spanish skirt he’s supposed to have been knocking up. Can’t a man have any fun these days without it being plastered all over the bleedin papers?

This Loos woman who he’s been doing shooting practice with ain’t much of a looker but maybe she likes the tumble dryer on full tilt if you get my meaning. Many a man will tell you that if his smalls get a good wringing out a couple of times a week then it don’t matter if the dryer has to be hidden away in a cupboard. After all, you don’t look at the cistern while you are pumping the toilet, now do you? And if it’s true in plumbing then it’s true in life.

So what if Beckham did give her one? Look he’s a fit, young bloke with normal bloke urges. His missus is away making music so he makes hay while the sun shines. And let’s face it, he’s in Spain so the sun shines all the flippin time. What does she expect him to do? Think of Gary Neville and hope it goes away? Course not.

Look the man is a bleedin demi-God and women are throwing themselves at him, luring him with paella and sangria and tickets for bullfights and all sorts. He may be a demi-God but he’s only flippin human. Listen, I’ve been to Torremo-bleedin-linos and I know what them sultry senoritas are like. Can’t keep their hands off us white men.

And anyways let’s face it, Lady McBeckham is hardly the kind of woman to keep a man happy is she? She’s so flipping arachnaphobic she makes the ladies of the Auschwitz dieting club look like Vanessa Feltz. I’ve seen more meat in a McDonald’s hamburger. Well, not really.

What is it with the mongrel press in this country? They can’t be happy just with pictures of Beckham’s latest haircut, oh no. They have to go printing the flipping truth all the time. Who’s interested in that? Makes me bleedin blood boil so it does. These tabloid journalists, these scumnalists, they should be strung up by their exclusives.

It’s high time the press in this country went back to the days when they kept things from the working man that they didn’t need to know. The old kings and the old queens used to be at it like rabbits and no-one was ever the wiser. The dear old Queen Mum once had the entire 3rd division of the Household Cavalry one cold winter’s night but you never read about that in the Daily Mirror did you? Instead we had proper stories about the price of bread, the suffering of the little Biafrans and the role of women in the workplace. Proper bleedin news, not stuff the likes of us don’t need to know. Blimey.

Look mate, if Beckham scores against the Froggies in Euro 2004 then I don’t care if he scores with every senorita between here and Barca-bleedin-lona. And what’s more I don’t want to read about it or see pictures of it. Well, unless the bird is better looking than that one he was shagging last week obviously. No offence meant.

And you know what? Do you? If Beckham isn’t absolutely flippin brilliant this summer then it will be the tabloid scumnalists’ fault for putting him right off his game. Bleedin treason so it is.

Come on you newspaper executors, get your act together. More stories about starving Biafrans. Less stories about Beckham’s nookie. It’s the patriotic thing to do.

Plumb on.

Peter Plumb

Magnier’s the real cowboy

Howya

Jaysus was I not after telling you that eejit JP Magnier was as much use as a condom on a fish? He had a double handful coming to the last on Rhinestone Cowboy but didn’t make a move until the winner was home and hosed. If the ape had made his move any later it would have been dark. I told Jonjo the boy could ride none and right I was too. If there’s an arseways of riding a nag then that eejit will find it.

Now youse may be thinking I’m a bit biased on account of how I lost a bundle on the Cowboy and youse wouldn’t be entirely wrong. I would gladly have drop-kicked the little gobshite over Cleve Hill if I could have got me boot on him. Jaysus. But there’s no getting away from the fact that he’d never have gotten his arse within farting distance of that horse if his ould fella wasn’t who he is. Little bollocks that he is.

Sure and it was another brutal day. When Moscow Flyer fell I could have sworn the Pope was a Protestant. How could they do that us what with it being St Paddy’s an all? Next time I see Barry Geraghty I’ll be after asking him for the money he owes me on account of him not being able to keep his arse on a horse. That’s one less present the O’Farrell chisellers will be getting this Christmas.

Our Vic? Inglis Drever? Jaysus. This betting malarkey is sure a pain in the jacksie. I can’t bring meself to tell youse how much I was losing before the last. Let’s just say I had a right does of the scutters at the thought of what Mrs F would do to me if she was after finding out. I’m sure it woould be involving a cutty knife and me poor old mickey. Jaysus.

Ah but wait. Total Enjoyment it was at the end of the day. I had even put me dinner money on the beast that’s how bad it was getting. Oh to see the nag come up that hill with every other nag viewing it’s arse. Deadly so it was. The thought of no scran last night was more than a working man should have to bear.

Sure and we had a couple of jars of the black stuff by way of celebration and a toast to St Paddy and Jimmy Culloty. The man’s a proper saint so he is. Mind you if he doesn’t bring Best Mate home in front today then he needn’t bother coming round my house looking for a bed the next time his missus gets the hump.

Last day lads and I’m feeling lucky. I might even go and nibble the ear of that little French dote that looks after Baracouda. Jaysus, if only she didn’t look quite so much like Baracouda. Still first I’m off for a spot of lunch.

Hungry? I could eat a traffic warden’s arse through a parking ticket.

See youse at the track.

School’s A Scandal

The Accused

Messrs. Peter Peacock and Charles Clarke

The Charge

That they wantonly and negligently stand by and do nothing while our Education system lurches from crisis to crisis, leading to a dumbing-down of academic and social standards.

Case for the Prosecution

I have some questions. What has happened to our Education system? Why have examinations become so easy? Why are so many people being admitted to our universities to partake in courses that are unspeakably crass and ill-considered? Why do I increasingly see our educational institutions brimful of thick, badly-behaved little toads brandishing a clutch of unutterably useless, paper qualifications? Standard Grade Foundation Level? Have you ever witnessed this? The foundation level paper for French asks candidates to

– write their name (that’s worth 30%)

– choose the capital city of France from a list including Paris, New York and London (that’s worth 50%)

– and to ask what you would normally do with a baguette (that’s obviously worth the remaining 20%, a fact I mention for the benefit of anyone reading this who is practising for their Higher Mathematics examination and in need of a bit of arithmetical revision)

I know what I would do with it. It would involve the action of insertion, the nether parts of both Charles Clarke and Peter Peacock and swift movement. Clearly the baguette would need to be halved prior to insertion to meet its twin target, roasting notwithstanding, a feat best achieved by slicing the aforementioned baguette into two equal pieces; a fact I mention for the benefit of anyone reading this who is practising for their Higher Mathematics examination and in need of a bit of problem-solving revision with a geometrical slant.

A foundation or general pass standard grade says only one word to me. And that word is ‘loser’. But, I hear you opine, does it not say to you ‘This kid has worked d____d hard and while he may not be the sharpest tool in the shed at least he shows willingness and some kind of dedication so why not give him a chance, your honour?’

No. It does not.

If you are unfortunate enough to have received one of these pieces of paper as reward for your academic efforts and are reading this then I have two things to say to you. Firstly, it is not going to get you a job or prove your worth or persuade anyone that you will ever amount to anything worthwhile. Secondly, do you understand a single word of what I am saying? No. I didn’t think so. I make no apologies for saying it again because it most certainly bears repetition. Loser.

I have completely had this to the back teeth. Life is not easy. A lot of it is about achievement and reaching milestones. It’s about competition. It’s about proving your abilities to yourself and to other people who then make some key decisions about what is going to happen to you. It may be an employer giving you your first job or a bank manager giving you a loan to start a small business. If you are not good enough then you fail. Simple as that.

So why do we so readily shirk from failing these delinquents at school? Failure is as failure does. There would seem to me to be little point in deluding these perpetually under-achieving little ticks by falsely raising their hopes and engendering in their midst any illusion of adequacy by awarding them a meaningless, low-value qualification. Why, there are even awards for turning up! Excuse me? But is it not a legal requirement for a child to attend school? Yet, we feel a need to reward them with a certificate for doing what is required of them by the law! Why not go the whole hog and present them with a certificate for tying their own shoelaces, keeping themselves clean or remembering to breathe out after they have breathed in?

Let us now do what needs to be done. Consign them to the dustbin of academic natural selection at the first opportunity and stop them wasting the time of their fellow students and those poor saps who have taken it upon themselves to try and teach them something. Teach them something! Don’t make me laugh! The majority of our schools are no longer the seat of learning or groves of academe that we may remember from our youth. No more the chewed pencil and the furrowed brow! Our schools have become a haven for vicious little thugs who are given free rein to wield their particular brand of malice against staff and pupils alike, safe in the knowledge that any attempt to properly counter this behaviour will invoke castigation, under the banner of social inclusion, from shrewish, withered, badly-dressed, lentil-eating women who wouldn’t know the touch of a man from a washing machine and would have less chance of bearing a child of their own than Sister Wendy Beckett. At Lent.

Let them leave school unqualified and enter the world of the criminal, the layabout or the tradesperson. Better still, remove them now to a place where they can follow their own muse. An establishment like Guantanamo Bay, perhaps, far removed from the strictures of the Social Worker, the Curriculum Enhancement Officer or the Child Psychologist, has some obvious attractions. Let us allow the more academically-able to flourish and remove from a hard-pressed professional teaching staff the spectre of bullying, aggression and malevolence that invariably accompanies the low-life academic loser throughout his school ‘career’.

It’s not like the country is short of qualified graduates. It is bursting to the gunwhales with 21-year old media studies graduates all trying to get a job with the BBC on the strength of a 3000-word essay on “Alfie Moon: urban zeitgeist”. Yet you try and get hold of a reliable plumber.

There is little point in trying to run a country with only scientists. History shows that the humble hunchback also has his place.

The prosecution rests.

Case for the Defence

Record numbers of students are now applying for university places.

Verdict

Guilty as charged.

Sentence

I hereby decree that Mr Peter Peacock and Mr Charles Clarke should be taken from this court to a place of execution, otherwise known as an inner-city secondary school, and there be subjected to ritual abuse, verbal and physical assault, disrespect, bullying and teachers’ whining until they see some sense. I would also warn them that I would not expect to see them up before me a second time.

St Paddy’s Day. Please!!!

Happy St Paddy’s to youse all but jayus lads, how bad was that yesterday?

The drink link has taken a bigger battering than Lisa Jones gives her gee gees. If Mrs O’Farrell knew how much cash I lost to those thieves on the rails then she’d have me large lad in her handbag and be taking it down the pawn shop.

Sure and it was a grand start too. Brave Inca nosed it and we thought it was going to be black stuff all the way. Me gobshite cousin Donal had been trying to tell me how Garde Champetre couldn’t lose but I’d had the whisper from Timmy Murphy that it hadn’t a baldy so I nipped on the favourite. Course and I could have told Donal but I never liked the ape anyways.

He and his crew had to haul ass out of town on account of being all out of chicken’s hash. After the first! Feckin eejits.

Mind you, maybe I should have joined them. Jaysus there were more outsiders than a loaf of bread. It’s me own fault after Conor O’Dwyer was telling me about a nag the night before but I couldn’t hear him right through the Guinness. Hardly useless I thought he said. Jaysus.

I’d fired a rake of money on good thing after good thing but the bookies satchels just kept getting fuller than McCririck’s knickers. Ah we’ll get it back in the last two I told the lads. Me arse and Katy Barry. Forties and fifties! Jaysus, is this game rigged?

Ah but we’re still fighting lads. I’ve managed to come up with a stake for another little bash at the books today. Rhinestone Cowboy in the Coral and we are flying again. I think I might have been a little fluthered last night on account of how I told Jonjo that he’d be better off with a trained monkey on the Cowboy’s back than that eejit Magnier. Jonjo said how he’d be better off not running it at all than have a fat beggar like me break his back. Cheeky gobshite.

Right lads, up and at em again. It’s St Paddy’s and there’s no way we can lose. I’m just off down the chipper to get me strength up for the day ahead.

Hungry? I could eat a clown’s arse through a circus tent.