February 21, 2006

The Seven Wonders of the Ancient World Modern Day Leamington Spa

Having spent nearly 5 terms in and around the Spa, it seems now would be a good time to point out the highlights for future generations. These are not necessarily as spectacular as the Hanging Gardens of Babylon. Nor are they quite so substantial as the Pyramids. However, they have fascinated me in small, superficial and ultimately pointless ways. So without further ado, here are the Seven Wonders of Leamington Spa:

  • The ever flushing urinals of Robins Well Trust me, they never stop. I can't comment on whether women will ever experience a toilet in a constant state of self cleaning, as I am not privy to the, presumably, pristine state of the women's facilities.

  • The waterless "facilities" of Sugar Urban legend tells us that they turn off the water to force you to buy bottled water once you've had too much vodbull. One things for sure – unflushable toilets create a stench. And washing your hands with redbull isn't the same.

  • The 8pm Oriental Star rush If you fancy dining at the Star, do not go at 8pm. However, by 9pm the whole place is empty. I'm unsure as to whether this says more about the Star, or about the dining habits of Leamington.

  • Suicidal Pedestrians Apparently, those strange Government ads about road safety never aired in Leamington. Combined with the fact that those from Leamington Spa do not fear death (ask around, its true), Leamington locals will not think twice (nor, for that matter, will they look twice) about stepping out into the road, no matter what vehicle is heading for them, and no matter what speed it is travelling.

  • The dubious legal nature of some of the Sun in Splendour's services Again, urban legend has it that the Sun in Splendour, on Tachbrook Road, doubles as a whore house. When the goat is outside, the hoes are in session. I stress urban legend – don't come complaining to me if it turns out to be a lie (and in fact, shame on you for trying).

  • Flames The lesser known cousin of Vialli's – Its on Radford Road and its seven-hundred and thirteen times better. Only ever seen to have closed once, the lovely chappies will cook for you any time of day or night, and even furnish you with the local rag to amuse yourself for five minutes. A must on the way home from any given night out. Even if it was a night out to a curry house or some such meal.

  • The sign on the bridge on Willes Road Granted, this may not be important to many. But if you plan on taking a quick route back to Radford Road from Sugar (and really you should, a red bull jacket fails compared to a beer jacket), you ought to be crossing this bridge. And what better way to commemorate your journey than to read this dedication to yourself. Or to others, should you be so inclined. Now, I have no idea what it says, primarily because I cannot remember the journey home on many occasions. However, it must always be read.

So there you have it. Suck on that, world. The Spa has got you by the nads.

January 09, 2006

Quote Happy?

I seem to be restricting my blogs to this more and more but the whole process of procrastination does dig up some gems:

Following another defeat, Crystal Palace manager Smith pointed to Latvian goalkeeper Alex Kolinko who had been in tears after the game. 'I made up a story about him. I said he came from the poorest mountain village in Latvia where he had to fight bears when he was eight. I said his grandparents had been shot by the Nazis, his mother had died of cancer and his sister was raped by a gang of mountain rebels. But he never shed a single tear because he was strong and brave. Then I told them that one month playing behind our defence had turned him into a blubbering wreck! The players didn't know what to say. Except Clinton Morrison – he said, "It's a shame about his sister".'

I'll add that this was a time when we were a bit shite. We're getting better now!

January 05, 2006

A Raincoat Short of a Wardrobe

Funny the things you find hidden away on message boards. Like this about Croydon's latest nutter:

The funniest thing i saw was this nutter walking around with a helium balloon the other day asking people if they wanted to go on holiday with him to Hawaii. He then got us and asked us to "hop in" the balloon. I couldn't stop laughing until he turned around to my friend, who is about 6'3 and build like the great wall of china and says "not you, you can get in my speed boat and come to Miami", he then proceeds to point to his shoe and try to usher my friend in. Very funny.

December 17, 2005

Burger King

Suitably tired, hungover, ruffled and probably quite malodourous, I made my way across London this morning, stopping for a breakfast portion of large fries and a medium coke (my stomach really couldn't face a "chicken" royale).

But it did go some way to cheering me up for I found this on the side of my coke:

…You could have gone larger, you didn't, you could have gone smaller, but you didn't want that. You're decisive and bold….

Or something to that effect (as I suggested, I was not in a "memorise what it says on my drink container" mood). Impressive how much crap can be written about the mere fact that I'd gone for an average, regular, medium drink. Made me chuckle though. Much to the bemusement of the others in the carriage, all of whom we're trying to stay away from the scruffy looking wreck in the corner.

November 30, 2005

Notepad of the Mind

I like to think of my memory as something akin to a notepad. When revising for an exam the other day, I had a terrible realisation. My notepad is full. I've reached the cardboard at the back. Not only that, but I've written all over the bit of card. And wasted a corner of it with a doodle (the doodle is, I think, Quagmire from Family Guy, but its not a very good one and I can't be a 100% on this).

See now the problem is, while I have a mental notepad, I only seem to have a mental biro. Pencil would have been too good in the way of forward planning. So here I am, a full, biro-written notepad. And no mental Tip-Ex. Fortunately, I seem to be scraping through the last year of my degree with a massive wad of post it notes which are slowly taking over all the space inside of my head. Its getting a bit messy.

Now ideally I could tidy it up. Rip out the needless pages. The ones that still have the lyrics to Barbie Girl, a perfectly maintained image of the main exit at Bromley Railway Station, and my seat number for Palace's trip to Wembley for the 1996/7 play off final. Of course, this doesn't work. By even acknowledging their existence, they'll be stuck there for another half a dozen years. And because they've been recently viewed, the notepad will always fall open on one of those pages.

So what do I need to do to readily discover the rules on admissibility for prior inconsistent statements? I can find the page that tells me they exist. I just can't find the page that tells me what they are.

I think, frankly, I need an upgrade. An electronic, cross referenced database. With a junk filter.

Alternatively, I may just be sleep deprived and a little bit excited that I turned 21 a few hours ago. Good night.

November 13, 2005

Simon Jordan Gold

"Note to self Re: the Fonz..."

A little explanation to my housemates for that random outburst of laughter a moment ago. Reading an article by Simon Jordan (Crystal Palace Chairman) in his fortnightly Observer column (13/11/05):

In my opinion, no owner in their right mind would willingly invite an average agent into his academy, any more than a brothel owner would let a syphilitic nutter into his brothel


"...Mark, you are NOT the Fonz"

November 10, 2005


Writing about web page http://www.qarxis.com/Fainting_Goats

"Blitzkrieg! I'm in the Ardennes, nothing can hurt me in the Ardennes!"

See the above link. I've been replaying the clip and pissing myself laughing for the last 20 minutes. Why the hell does this happen? It must be the greatest cock up mother nature has ever made in terms of a self-defence mechanism.

Quite funny though.

"Mark? You're in the stationary cupboard?"

November 06, 2005

An Ode to the M40

"This was definitely a good idea..."

Everytime I head home, I have to take a good hour and a half journey down the M40. Today, I noticed some very strange things on that trip:

– There is a concept of "car friends". Car friends are other cars who tend to keep up with you for a long period of time. Often a yo-yoing effect is involved. Well today, I made a car enemy. He kept with me alright, but he wouldn't bugger off out of the way and was frankly infuriating in countless indescribable ways. Eventually, he exited at Oxford and I laughed a manic laugh to myself, finally vanquishing my foe.

– Several other motoring delinquents were encountered on the journey. They all either emerged or disappeared at Oxford. I have come to the conclusion that Oxford harbours all kind of evil motorists. I can just imagine them plotting on how best to attach spikes to their wheel hubs.

– A slightly less paranoia driven observation: my windscreen wipers will not wipe in time with any dance bassline on Big Tunes 3 - Disc 2. Fast is too fast, medium is too slow, and slow is just a stupid thing to try and fit to dance music.

So if you see an angry looking fellow steaming up the motorway, looking extra cautious and paranoid around Oxford, and playing incessantly with his windscreen wipers, chances are its me. Or someone equally impatient with motorway-driving.

"...There is no possible way that this wasn't a good idea."

November 03, 2005

A Scheme Worthy of Jimmy Carr

"But Officer, she sat on it"....

I've been putting some thought into what to blog lately. I could eternally rant about how woefully inadequate Leamington-based motorists are, but I reckon it'd get boring. Football offered some opportunities, but I'm still sidelined. So following a trip to see Saw 2 the other night, a mass murder-influenced discussion brought up the idea of making a documentary. About students. In the style of a nature programme. David Attenborough style commentary and a leafy twig could provide endless opportunities!

Thing is, I woke up the next morning and contemplated the possible drawbacks. Most notably the risk of someone twatting me round the head for filming them and sarcastically muttering something about their dress sense. That, and the lack of a camera.

So I came up with something new. Inspired by re-watching an old-ish Jimmy Carr DVD, his placing of inappropriate ads inspired me. I'm going to start placing Lonely Hearts ads. Just to guage how desperate people really are. All replies will be posted up here. We'll see just how many people out there really are looking for an "Albino he-she, one leg considerably longer than other, birthmark covering 3.7% of body, allergic to cardboard, seeking similar". Or just how popular an "Half Italian thoroughbred in need of a ride" really is. There's always the classic "Desperate bloke needs shag. Will consider porkers" to consider.

This will not be a purely sex-orientated male venture though. Oh no. I've thought about this. Less women use personals. So, if we put in some fictional women, we can see how desperate the male population is. "27 year old single BBW seeks weedy bloke for interesting social experiment". Etc.

Suggestions welcome.

..."Yeah, right. Now get in with the nonces."

November 02, 2005

Monks And Halloween

Writing about web page http://blogs.warwick.ac.uk/chinde/entry/making_evil_monk/

Writing about an entry you don't have permission to view

"You want some do you?..."

Halloween photos are now up and can be found here. Click the link above for the inspiration, making and enjoyment of those wonderful hooded garments.


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