Friday, January 28, 2005

Bez 2

Bez’s Celebrity Big Brother win gives me reason to tell my favourite Bez story.

Years of lurching from one disaster to another Tony Wilson’s punk rock brainchild, Factory Records, was going to the wall. Two things could save them, New Order’s new album Republic and the Happy Monday’s fourth album, Yes Please. There were doubts that New Order could stop arguing long enough to record anything. The Mondays were Wilson’s last chance.

The Monday’s were deep in a hellhole of smack addiction. Surrounded by gangsters and drug dealers Sean Ryder simply wasn’t conscious for long enough to complete the album.

Wilson decided to get the band out of Manchester so he sent them to Jamaica. Out of the frying pan and into the fire, you might say. The band spunked tens of thousands of pounds on cheaper, purer crack cocaine, selling items from their studio to raise the cash. The wolves continued to bark at Wilson’s door.

Wilson needed Yes Please; the Monday’s needed money so Ryder took the master tapes hostage. Despairing, Wilson pawned his children and wired the money to Jamaica. Ryder handed the tapes over where the relieved Wilson played them, they were half finished instrumentals with no vocals.

The madness continued. Bez, bombed out on smack, hired a jeep to drive across the island. Travelling down a one way track he came across another jeep coming the other way. Swerving, he turned the jeep over. He broke both his arms and was rushed to hospital. The doctors put both arms in solid casts fixed so that his arms were sticking out as though pinned to a crucifix.

Feeling he was missing the party, Bez quickly discharged himself and decided to get out of the madness (presumably his maraca parts were sorted). He took a holiday on the other side of the island.

Still in his plaster casts he was drawn to the fun that could be had riding the ‘flying bananas’ which were popular with tourists. Despite being unable to hold onto the straps the world’s greatest Mancunian went for a thrill a minute ride…

Where he hit a wave, was thrown into the air, landed in the water he broke his broken arms.

Both of them.


Within a week.

Wednesday, January 26, 2005

Eeh hee

Last night Channel 4 mapped the Michael Jackson’s compulsive attraction towards young pre-pubescent boys in, er, Michael Jackson’s Boys. Inevitably the story of Jordy Chandler raised its head. The programme investigated the FBI's in-depth enquiries into the allegations. One ‘source’ said…

“They took pictures of his front private parts, his back private parts, his side private parts…”

Excuse me? Michael Jackson has side private parts?

Tuesday, January 25, 2005

How to get from Angel Islington to Komedia Comedy Club Brighton ‘before 7.30'

Leave meeting in Angel Islington at 6.30
6.35 Catch cab to Marylebone
Crawl across London in cab, whilst driver tells you about the suicide on the Marylebone flyover (they had to wash blood and bones off the road and everything).
Arrive at Marylebone Station at 6.46 see that next train departs at 6.58
Buy orange juice and pistachio nuts
Put ticket into barrier, pull out after it’s rejected
Look at ticket, realise that you’ve managed to buy a Travelcard which doesn’t cover Zone 1
Head for ticket inspectors
Wait for ticket inspectors to finish dealing with about 60 tourists
After 5 minutes of waiting decide instead to buy a Zone 1 ticket just to get you through the barrier
Go to machine, select appropriate ticket
Put debit card in
Take card out after it’s rejected because you can’t use it twice on a ticket machine in the same day
Go to cash machine to get cash out
Wait in queue
Withdraw £20
Go back to machine
Select ticket and put £10 into slot
Pull £10 out after it’s rejected
Put same £10 into slot
Pull £10 out after it’s rejected
Put another £10 into slot
Pull this £10 out after it’s rejected
Put it in again
Take it out again
Miss 6.58 train
Walk up to ticket inspectors
Look confident, wave invalid tickets in the air, proceed onto platform
Finally board next train at 7.30
Arrive Amersham at 8.15
Get changed in car park
Depart car park at 8.22
Go to Tesco to get Petrol
Realise you need the toilet
Drive to Tesco shop and go to toilet
Head for Beconsfield
Join M40
Listen to Pete Tong
Listen to Westwood
Turn Westwood off after 15 minutes as he doesn’t appear to have played a single record not completed a single sentence even though his music and talking have been constant.
Join M23 at Junction 7
Stop at Pea’s Pottage Services for Burger King
Eat Burger King
Feel ill
Set off towards M23
Turn back as Coke passes straight through and toilet is needed again
Go to Pea’s Pottage Services toilet
Get back in car
Put half cup of Coke in cup holder in glove compartment
Depart Pea’s Pottage Services
Drive over small bump
Spill Coke all over car
Turn back to Pea’s Pottage Services and collect napkins
Set off towards M23
Join A23
Arrive in Brighton at 10pm
Drive to seafront
Park at NCP
Check into Quality Hotel
Leave Quality Hotel, head north
At Traffic lights turn right
At HSBC turn left
Komedia is on your right
Arrive at Komedia at 10.35 (and the show ended 20 minutes ago)

Wednesday, January 19, 2005

Freedom isn't free, its got a pretty fucking hefty fee

OK, it’s not Ghandi, it doesn’t even have the emotional texture of Dodgeball, but Team America – World Police is as funny as your mum starring in a blaxploitation flick. Using Thunderbirds style marionettes gives Trey Parker and Matt Stone licence to do things that wouldn’t normally get near a mainstream cinema. Alongside songs about AIDS (whether you’re gay, straight, white or spade, everyone’s got AIDS) and hard core pornography is a clear ridiculing of the breast beating Americans and bleeding heart liberals that Hollywood is otherwise scared to touch at the moment. Every time Team America is deployed to save the world they’re accompanied by red neck soft rock soundtrack which goes “America, FUCK YEAH!” It says it all really.

Along side is the typically brainless South Park stupidity. Terrorists communicate with each other using a combination of just three words – Mohammed, Jihad and Dakadaka. Kim Jong Il is a Dr Evil type character with a daft evil plan for world domination. He talks by switching his Rs and Ls round (like what Koreans do). Whilst you shouldn’t, you can’t help laughing every time he says Herro Everlybody! His song, Ronery, is truly touching. Of course there’s endless jokes that can be drawn from the limitations of marionettes (stupid walks, imprecise movements, strings everywhere) they use every one, about six times each.

As a piece of satire, I’m not sure how clear the message, if there is one, really is. There’s something to do with pussies (liberals, depicted by Hollywood Actors) don’t like dicks (Flag waving Americans) because dicks fuck pussies, but dicks also sometimes fuck assholes (evil dictatorships) and if they didn’t we’d all get covered in shit, and that pussies aren’t that far from assholes anyway. There’s something there, but I don’t know.

It’s not big and it’s not clever, but it’s very big and very clever. Hmm.

Saturday, January 15, 2005


I often concern myself over the utter drivel written on this site, I'm comforted in the short term by occasionally reading those blogs written by teens exclusively in txt msg language. However this opening paragraph from this article is actually written a by paid professional journalist.

"According to figures released by the Football League yesterday, only nine clubs in League Two did not pay for the services of a licensed agent in the second half of 2004 and Oxford United were not one of those."

Thursday, January 13, 2005

Slow news in good news

How out of touch can the royals be? Do they not understand this country at all? Do the people they claim to represent mean nothing to them? I mean, who the hell goes to a “Natives and Colonials” party anyway? Have these people never head of Vicars and Tarts.

According to GMTV, The Jews have accepted Prince Harry’s apology for wearing a Nazi uniform to a fancy dress party last week. Well done The Jews, all 300,000 of you!

I believe the conversation would have gone something like this…

“Hello… Harry who?... Oh he’s The Ginger right?... as a Nazi you say? … accept his apology for what?... Right, whatever, ‘spose so, go mad, now can I go its quiz night down at the Red Lion”.

Apparently William went as a Lion, well done Wills, what a jolly good chap he is.

Tuesday, January 11, 2005

Bez'ed in class

Let’s face it, if Bez entered the boat race he’d deserve to win it, his victory in Celebrity Big Brother should be assured. I never got the chance to see the Mondays in full flow, but I did once see a shambolic Black Grape gig at the Town and Country Club.

We were in the balcony and could see right into the wings of the stage, the Grape’s backing band came on following a shouty support slot from Kaliphz, who had a brief but bright career as an Asian Agit-Hip Hop unit until they spoilt it all by hooking up to record a single with Prince Naseem.

The band struck up one of those signature Mondays style ramshackle grooves. It went on for an age, round and round, chugging a dirty funk. After about four minutes, it seemed that Shaun Ryder and Bez weren’t actually going to turn up. Just as it seemed the gig wouldn’t happen, from the wings, a dancing monkey appeared in the gloom. Bez grooved into view shaking his maracas as though he’d freaky danced his way all the way down the M6 from Manchester. The place went ballistic, but the rapture didn’t break Bez’s rhythm as he continued across the stage, halting occasionally to do a little back step or a freestyled trot on the spot. Eventually he reached the far side of the stage squatted to shake his maracas at a couple of enthralled fans. Then he rose and, still without breaking his rhythm, danced straight off the other side of the stage.

And that was it, Bez went home, one Ecstasy induced circuit, the best performance of the night, and he was done. Or so it seemed. He did return several songs later, presumably having carried on in the same direction until a roadie turned him back towards the stage. When he eventually came back, he took up station on the edge of the stage. He didn’t break his rhythm at any point for the next two hours, he even danced to the silence in between songs, demonstrating some of his best moves as it happens.

Monday, January 10, 2005

Preferred pomposity

Baz brings up a good point in my top 50 CD’s, (aside from the fact that I have both Coldplay albums in my top 50, which seems odd even to me) he questions my Queen selection. Which brand of overblown pompousness do you prefer?

Early Queen Era?
Begone with you you shod and shady senators
Give out the good leave out the bad evil cries
I challenge the mighty titan and his troubadours
And with a smile
I'll take you to the seven seas of Rhye


Mid-Late Queen Era
You say smile I say cheese
Cartier I say please
Income tax I say Jesus
I don't wanna be a candidate for
Vietnam or Watergate
Cos all I wanna do is
Bicycle bicycle bicycle

Saturday, January 08, 2005

Let me tell you a secret

With this furore surrounding the BBC’s decision to show Jerry Springer The Opera on telly, I’ve a bit of a guilty secret to tell you about the show. Jerry Springer The Opera has been running in London’s fringe theatre district of “The West End” and all over the country for years. What’s more, the show is inspired by a television programme that’s been subverting viewers of a on a small terrestrial channel called ITV since the mid-nineties.

I think I should tell Mediawatch. This underground campaign to teach people to swear must be stopped.

Friday, January 07, 2005

Ruffles' festive fifty

The things you do on a Christmas day, my fifty favourite albums, OF ALL TIME [thunderclaps, lighting strikes]…

1. Public Enemy - It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold us Back
2. Depeche Mode - 101
3. Goats – Tricks of the Shade
4. Orbital - Brown
5. Stone Roses - Stone Roses
6. Happy Mondays - Pills Thrills and Bellyaches
7. Coldcut - Journey's By DJ
8. Rage Against The Machine - Rage Against The Machine
9. Carter, Jon - Live At The Heavenly Social
10. Radiohead - OK Computer
11. David Bowie - Hunky Dory
12. Leftfield - Leftism
13. Radiohead - The Bends
14. Nirvana - Unplugged
15. New Order - Republic
16. Dr Dre - The Chronic
17. New Order - Technique
18. Massive Attack - Protection
19. Depeche Mode - Violator
20. Nirvana - Nevermind
21. Portishead - Dummy
22. Smiths - The Queen Is Dead
23. Oasis - What's The Story Morning Glory
24. Beatles - Abbey Road
25. Beatles - The White Album
26. Smiths - Louder Than Bombs
27. Run DMC - Raising Hell
28. Beastie Boys - Paul's Boutique
29. Massive Attack - Blue Lines
30. Cypress Hill - Black Sunday
31. Coldplay - Parachutes
32. Bjork - Debut
33. Orb - Adventures Beyond The Ultraworld
34. Carter, Jon - Viva Bugged Out
35. Beatles - Sergeant Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band
36. Stevens, Cat - Teaser and the Firecat
37. Sugar - Copper Blue
38. KLF - The White Room
39. Streets - Original Pirate Material
40. Pharcyde – Bizarre Ride to the Pharcyde
41. Queen - Jazz
42. Blur - Park Life
43. Pop Will Eat Itself - This is the day, This is the hour, This is this
44. De La Soul - 3 Feet High And Rising
45. Coldplay - A Rush Of Blood To The Head
46. Radiohead - Pablo Honey
47. Public Enemy - Fear Of A Black Planet
48. Depeche Mode - Songs of Faith and Devotion
49. Charlatans - Between 10th & 11th
50. Stereo MCs – Connected

Tuesday, January 04, 2005

A world of my very own making

At the risk of losing all friends and/or respect, this was pretty much written about me and my childhood. I often ask people what they do on Saturdays because mine are largely dictated to by going to see Oxford play; it’s been like that for years. I’m not sure what others’ do when they wake up on Saturday morning. Without a similar affliction, what occupies their spare time?

It wasn’t always like this, when I was small the whole weekend would be taken up by Subbuteo exactly as it’s described in the story. Generally I would play on my own, partly because I couldn’t abide others’ interpretations of the laws of the game (high powered flicking wasn’t allowed, nor was waggling your goalie from side to side – when did you last see a goalkeeper running from post to post at 500 miles an hour to save a shot?) mostly, I played on my own because I wanted to play more often than anyone else.

Friday nights was the, ahem, Friday League. This was years before SKY’s Monday night football or Super Sunday. The Friday League consisted of six teams including Walketon Rovers (pictured left, looking angry) and Wolvenal (pictured right, looking surprised), who I resurrected from my dad’s childhood (Wolvenal being a mix of dad’s favourite teams – Wolves and Arsenal).

The players who played for these clubs were drawn from that year’s Pannini Sticker Book, apart from Mark Flint, England and Rovers Captain (notable because he was badly painted) who was made up all by my own.

Saturday morning’s, apart from the arrival of that week’s Roy of the Rovers, was the big cup competition, the (oh, god help me) Saturday Cup. This was followed by the big European night on Monday when, usually, Walketon or Wolvenal, would take on the giants of the scene. For some reason these weren’t Juventus or Real Madrid, but teams like Widez Lodz, a Polish side who dominated my competitions.

There were some classic games, I still remember Rovers’ keeper being sent off in the first half of a European cup quarter final versus Antwerp (who had the most potent striker at the time – Van Der Somebody or other). The striker stepped up to take the resulting penalty, thundering it against the bar. What followed was a legendary Rovers rear guard, without the benefit of a keeper, which saw an unlikely victory and them proceed into the Semis. I always had a sense of fair play; I wouldn’t offer any bias and my favoured teams won as much as they lost.

I completed about 10 seasons and a couple of World Cups in total (champions of the World – Sweden followed by Brazil, England once knocked out in a dramatic semi-final by, erm, Wales). Then I got smart, introducing a UEFA Cup competition on a Tuesday and a couple of additional divisions of the Friday League, played on Thursday. Like SKY, I got greedy, and the quality of the football and the spectacle got diluted. It was the beginning of the end, I tried to speed through the minor competitions by playing games on the Commodore 64, or through some elaborate dice game, but it never worked. The legend collapsed around my ears and I moved on. I hope Rupert Murdoch and the FA are reading the sorry tale.

Sunday, January 02, 2005

So spake Sophie

Sorry, a gratuitous, isn’t my two-year-old niece funny post…

On running into a room full of people… “Hello anybody”
On the spectacular London New Year fireworks… “Look, fireworks, wow… and… WOW”
On being tucked into bed… “Put the blanket on me, but you can’t sleep with me because that would be dangerous”
On god knows what… “If you close your eyes like a rabbit (or possibly a carrot) your shoes will disappear.”

Newer Posts Older Posts Home

Blogger Template by Blogcrowds