Thursday, 29 April 2010

Leaders Debate III : Lead Harder

The third in the trilogy. Tonight was about the economy and stuff.

"We've got to start making things again in this country." Um. I'm sorry. Didn't you destroy the manufacturing base in the 80s?

Double Dip Recession sounds like a grim economic porn movie

@viceuk Brown's mouth is going nuts! He's like a beleagured carp...

@warrenellis Someone has polished David Cameron's chin into a shining Failure Bump

Sky poll just in! David Cameron won the debate!


@mrchrisaddison "I've had enough people in tears in my office..." Clegg trying to be more like Gordon Brown.

@viceuk Everyone under 25 will be given a job Gordon? What are they all gonna do? Massage your face?

Clegg wants to get criminals into the hands of the taxman. Not the police.

Cameron: "I will personally shave all your mothers." - Another impossible promise...

I am angered by the unemployment stuff. Giving young people from deprived backgrounds a better chance of employment is great, but you've got a middle class of graduates on your hands who are utterly fucked.

Cameron keeps going on about forcing people to take jobs when they are offered, but what jobs are these? It took me 6 months to get a fairly average position starting on 11k, after graduating from The University of St Andrews with a 2:1 and a raft of extra curricular experience.

I know young people through my work who have spent the past 16 months trying to get apprenticeships of the type Brown is advocating, and failing because they are incredibly competitive and there just aren't enough of them. The last time the library service advertised, ostensibly for the two posts of full and part time library assistant, they got over 450 applications.

Where are these jobs people must be forced to take?

@samjordison When born millionaires like David Cameron talk about working hard and saving, I do sick in my hand.

@iainmhepburn So, who was the winner tonight? Fulham, clearly.

@davidschneider Turn your mike off now, Gordon. Turn it off. Turn it off!!

Tuesday, 27 April 2010

Dwell In Possibility?

Flash fiction competition here.

This is a piece over at the Dean which is also arguably an example of what flash fiction is. I have no evidence of that being the intention behind it though.

Sunday, 25 April 2010

Free Music

The Winning Sperm Party is a delightfully named website that releases music by independent artists in Scotland, both in free download format and paid-for physical manifestation format. Have a look.

I came across it as part of blog research. The reasons for said research are twofold and follow, now.

1) I am trying to get an online magazine project off the ground at work, which will take the form of a blog. Sites I found when looking for ways to engage young persons with this included Lesbians Who Look Like Justin Bieber, and the prolific campaign to stop Zac Efron self tanning. I probably won't be using them as examples.

2) I am doing a course with CTJT so that I can sit NCTJ exams. Part of the course blurb was about having a professional writing blog with a target audience and an angle. Daddy Long Legs is not such a site, it's more of a scrapbook of things that catch my interest. So I was having a think about what my niche could be, and I wondered about local music. Turns out there are about 8 million Edinburgh music blogs, some of which are very good and are now linked to at the side of the page.

I know what I'm going to do instead, and will post about it when it's up and running.

In the meantime, what do you think of The Edinburgh Reporter, the news site I contribute to? The editor would like some constructive feedback!

Friday, 23 April 2010

A Message

She isn't anymore. But this makes me laugh.

Thursday, 22 April 2010

Politics: The Sequel

A lot of the people I follow on Twitter are at the Scottish Press Awards tonight. But some of the more vocal ones have been watching leaders debate round two...

@AIanucci -
Now's the time to burgle Nick Clegg's house.

@Paul_Cornell -
Cameron talking to camera tonight, not to studio audience as last time. I do like this format: no applause really shapes it.

@charltonbrooker - The set looks like a collection of sawn-off BA tailfins.

@AIanucci - There'll be a headline in tomorrow's Mail about how Clegg's mother met the Nazis

@mrchrisaddison - Clegg plays anti-paedophile card as pro-European argument. That should confuse the Daily Mail.

@AIanucci - Comedy! Big laughs at 'nutters'. Then Brown. Cameron now needs a zinger or he's the worst politician since Chamberlain

@mrchrisaddison - "I have been to Afghanistan a few times. Every time you're blown away." Nice phrasing, Dave.

@charltonbrooker - Great jogging anecdote from Cameron there.

@viceuk - What the hell is Gordon doing with his mouth?

@aeonofdiscord -
Securing our future, for the future, which we know will come, tomorrow.

@charltonbrooker - How about giving each of us an actual trident?

@Banderbear91 - Well in 40 years time the world will look very different if nukes get involved

@viceuk - Why does Brown crack up every time someone interrupts him, and why is he so pleased with 'going on trains all the time'

@mrchrisaddison - Cameron's purple tie, if you're wondering, is because he is still technically in mourning for Queen Victoria.

@mrchrisaddison - Ooh, no tax on freight planes. We didn't know that. That's a canny factbomb right there.

@AIannucci - Brown says 'guys and girls'. Could be tarred with the Saville brush, which is a minefield.

@charltonbrooker - Cameron should come back from that 'hanging out with climate denialists' zinger by pointing out that some of his best friends are climates.

@aeonofdiscord - 'I'm not a man of faith, but my wife is.'

@charltonbrooker - They should all prove how homophobic they're not by forming a daisy chain, right now.

@AIannucci - Brown: 'I was speaking to young people only yesterday.'

@MitchBenn - ... and we're blaming single mothers. Welcome to the 80s.


@mrchrisaddison - "Women, and you are one of them." Gordon's good eye working fine tonight.

@JeremyJHardy - Cameron is banging on about expenses when he used taxpayers' money to remove a unicorn from his family crest.

@simonpegg - David Cameron just told an 84 year old woman he was going to do something in 2016.

@gregoryclark1 -
this is the worst kraftwerk gig ever!

@charltonbrooker -
If it's disgraceful to frighten people in an election campaign, why all the hung parliament scaremongering?

@aeonofdiscord -
I drove the economy ALL THE WAY through this recession and NOBODY SAID THANK YOU.

@AIannucci - Just time for the funny question at the end.

@mrchrisaddison -
Question on immigration from immigrant. Wasn't expecting that from Sky.

@pictishtrail -
I fucking fucking HATE Jeremy Clarkson.

@mrchrisaddison - "No unskilled worker from outside Europe can enter our country." Yep, clinging onto the bottom of a lorry is quite a skill.

@AIannucci - Nick Clegg going after criminal gangs would be quite a good Sunday night drama.

@aeonofdiscord - Gripping this problem, gently but firmly, like a warm artichoke.

@mrchrisaddison - "You can't deport 900,000 people - you don't know where they live." That's genuinely funny.

@charltonbrooker - Next time, to provide a dramatic visual metaphor for 'change' from the old style of politics, Cameron should turn up dressed as a bee.

@Paul_Cornell - I like Gordon breaking from 'let's all work together' and attacking.

@aeonofdiscord - NC: 'Something really exciting is beginning to happen: me.'

@viceuk - Clegg reminds me of my dad when I was 8 and found his porn. "you don't need to tell your mum, we're pals, right?"

@JeremyJHardy - I made that up about the family crest. But you can lie about Tories because there is a higher truth: they're cunts.

@JeremyJHardy - They're saying Cameron won the debate! He looked like a puppy surprised by it's own farts.

@charltonbrooker - Can't wait for the YouGov poll proving the existence of unicorns.

@simonblackwell - It's a dangerous game YouGov/Sky/The Sun are playing, surely? To misreport something that 10m people have just watched with their own eyes.

@carriequinlan - So, the pollsters that are employed by Murdoch's The Sun are being reported by Murdoch's Sky as saying Cameron won. Right.

Wednesday, 21 April 2010


So I was hanging out at Boots Opticians (only marginally blinder than I was this time 2 years ago, hooray); whereupon I spotted this publication sitting atop the pile of Bests and OKs and Hellos.

Lady Golfer sounds like a euphemism to me. Like, 'And then ee kicked me, right in the lady golfer.' Ew.

But it isn't one. In fact, Lady Golfer magazine rather boringly does exactly what it says on the tin. And what's more you can follow them on Twitter, where they tweet the pertinent questions of the day. Things like, "anyone playing golf today?" Right on, sistaz.

In other news, I wrote some TOPICAL COMEDY*. And I'd do it again.

*or that was the general aim, at least.

Tuesday, 20 April 2010

A Plug!

If you have an interest in comics or illustration, you might want to check out a comics workshop being run in Edinburgh at the end of May by the very talented artist Aurora Osaki, also known as Nekocherry.

In a world where autobiographical comics are very much in vogue (Persepolis, anyone?), this event comes not a moment too soon. But there are only 12 places, so you need to get in quick! Express your interest through the facebook event or email Aurora on the address here for more info.

Monday, 19 April 2010

And The Winner Of The Breakfast Competition Is...

Perthshire- based jewellery designer Emily Boyd. Well played.

Saturday, 17 April 2010


The TARDIS at the bottom of Brandon Terrace. I know Doctor Who is a bit of a gay icon, but the graffiti seems a little tasteless.

Friday, 16 April 2010


Social comment on Brandon Terrace.

But is Leroy Jenkins the author or the consumer?

Hard to say.

Thursday, 15 April 2010


This is what my twitter feed has been doing for the last 90 minutes.

@milnemedia Wonder if we could do live mash-up of #leadersdebate on ITV with Outnumbered on BBC 1 at 9.30pm? Now THAT would be compelling.

@iainmhepburn Next on ITV #leadersdebate, your chance to win everything mentioned on the show so far: a pub, cash, a 40-year-old black man, drugs, a car..

@aeonofdiscord I'm glad you're not making things up, David. That wouldn't help at all.

"...where a child produced a knife in school". Cameron: tough on metalwork, tough on the causes of metalwork.

@sinisterpics David Cameron is amazing, I've never seen someone who looks like a bald man with hair.


@aeonofdiscord David threatens to nuke Iran

@aagb1884 And we can't use Google maps to find out where to bomb. Nightmare.

@fragmad David Cameron looks like a Doctor Who monster that's shat itself.

@megpickard Every time Brown or Cameron trots out another convenient anecdote, I find myself shouting "DIDN'T HAPPEN" at the screen

@foodiesarah Going to go to bed feeling v isolated having never been visited by Brown, Cameron or Clegg. Why, why, why?

@AIannuci Brown: 'There are 6million carers in this country. I've met many of them.'

@paulwaugh Can't wait for Clegg to say "I agree with Nick...Oh Christ, I AM Nick..."

@paul_cornell Clegg's won, mainly 'cos he can literally say anything he likes. Gordon won the serious stuff. Great event, hope it makes people vote.

@aagb1884 Gordon was doing so well until he basically said 'I hope all the slow people understood the long words'

@mrchrisaddison "Choose hope over fear?" Oh, Christ. He so wants to be Obama. I wouldn't be surprised if he blacked up for the next one.

@warrenellis Well, that was a loathesome fucking experience. I'm going back to work, with hate in my very balls

So yes. Clegg presented himself in the best light, Brown did better than I expected, and Cameron is a fanny. IMHO.

Wednesday, 14 April 2010

Competition: The Sequel

One of these breakfasts is 'Traditional' and one is 'Scottish'. Both are £2.79 from The Standing Order, and both are edible but cool.

Guess which is which and win a fabulous prize!

(The prize will be a short poem in your honour.)

Tuesday, 13 April 2010


The girl in front of me is reading The Island by Victoria Hislop. Almost everyone else has a Metro on the go (current headline 'Steven Seagal had sex slaves on call 24/7.' Go Steven.). But me? I am reading Diary of a Doctor Who Addict. And understanding most of the continuity references.

What a day.

Monday, 12 April 2010


I am in the midst of developing a cunning plan. The idea behind it is to develop a long-term career where my being constantly thwarted is not the order of the day. It's almost certainly going to involve some sort of long distance learning. Hooray!

In the meantime, a link to my review of a lecture on OCD I heard at the Edinburgh Science Festival, and an item on a fun Edinburgh tourist activity to try. Also if you ever want to read my sporadic forays into music reviewery, click. I keep meaning to do more, but often I don't, due to an unwieldy cocktail of apathy and actually being quite busy.

Sunday, 11 April 2010


... if proof were needed, that pigeons are idiots.

These two are eating crumbs of paint from poorly executed double yellows.

Nom nom nom.

Saturday, 10 April 2010

A Hot Tip

If you click on the mug it will take you to a recipe for how to make cake in a mug. In the microwave. Hooray!

Friday, 9 April 2010

A Change

Here is some positive community news reported by me.

And now, a poem.


Much to his Mum and Dad's dismay
Horace ate himself one day.
He didn't stop to say his grace,
He just sat down and ate his face.
"We can't have this his Dad declared,
"If that lad's ate, he should be shared."
But even as he spoke they saw
Horace eating more and more:
First his legs and then his thighs,
His arms, his nose, his hair, his eyes...
"Stop him someone!" Mother cried
"Those eyeballs would be better fried!"
But all too late, for they were gone,
And he had started on his dong...
"Oh! foolish child!" the father mourns
"You could have deep-fried that with prawns,
Some parsley and some tartar sauce..."
But H. was on his second course:
His liver and his lights and lung,
His ears, his neck, his chin, his tongue;
"To think I raised him from the cot
And now he's going to scoff the lot!"
His Mother cried: "What shall we do?
What's left won't even make a stew..."
And as she wept, her son was seen
To eat his head, his heart, his spleen.
And there he lay: a boy no more,
Just a stomach, on the floor...
None the less, since it was his
They ate it – that's what haggis is.

- Monty Python

Thursday, 8 April 2010


I have a press pass for a few Edinburgh Science Festival events over the weekend. Annoyingly I can't go to the one I am most interested in, Journalism in the Digital Age, as I am working on Sunday afternoon.

In other news I am painfully slowly working my way through character art for a comic set in Halesowen. The gap in the market will be filled!

Wednesday, 7 April 2010


Let's go to see Gentlemen Broncos. It involves Jermaine Clement doing a very bizarre accent that sounds a bit like Tim Curry.

*You're a liar, where d'ya get your ears fae, Mexico?* - 11 year old calmly informing me he had not been asked to leave the libbiray.

The Polish For Penguin Is Pingwin

Monday, 5 April 2010

A Cause

We all know that the only way to make a difference in the world today is to join a Facebook group.

It is with that in mind I would like to draw your attention to the campaign to get Half Man Half Biscuit's seminal track Joy Division Oven Gloves to number 6 in the charts, to highlight the plight of the soon to be closed 6music. If you click on my Joy Division Oven Glove below, it will take you to a Facebook event on this subject.

Alternatively the information on said page runs thus:

Download the song from amazon, iTunes, tunetribe or play between RIGHT NOW and April 11 2010 and help it get to number 6 in the Top 40.

Fill in the BBC Strategy Review survey. It's comparatively involved, ie it will ask you for your actual views rather than merely box-ticking.

Sign the petition to save 6music.

Listen to 6music and tell everyone else you know to do the same.

Sunday, 4 April 2010

How Much Writing Can You Fit On An Egg?

This is my one.

Once Upon A Time there was a slimline maiden with shining red-gold curls and steady green-grey eyes that sometimes shone with impenetrable calm. She was walking confidently through a flowery meadow one day, singing tunelessly as is the wont of the tone deaf, when she heard a cacophonous braying noise.

On further investigation she discovered a velvet-nosed donkey which was trapped underneath an echo.

"What happened to you," she wondered aloud, not really expecting an answer.

"I am the victim of a terrible injustice," the donkey replied in a surprising manner. "A horrible trolley boy from the local supermarket was dabbling in the occult and changed me into a donkey. I know not how to break the spell."

"Oh," said the maid, "that's sad."

Then she went home for tea.

Happy Easter.

Saturday, 3 April 2010

Du dudu du, du dudu du, du dudu du, du dudu du

New series of Doctor Who. Moffat in charge. Suddenly RTD's disappointing descent into mawkishness is replaced by funny one-liners, personality, and an assistant with a backbone. Well, Donna had one of those. But look how she was written out, almost as punishment for not fancying the doctor or being made of jaw... Anyway, I'm pretty excited about staying in for the next 12 Saturday nights.

Incidentally my review of the roadshow at which this photo was taken is here, and at the moment a photo I took is on the front page leading to it.

Friday, 2 April 2010

Caption Competition

A prize for the best suggestion...

(yes, it is a Captain Jack Sparrow figurine, and yes, he is sellotaped to a cupboard.)