Random mutterings, sighing and gasping, finger jabbing, brow dabbing and general bleatings about everyday bollocks. Brought to you by Angie Annetts, author of the highly-acclaimed short story collection, 'Tales From Around The Bend'. http://www.talesfrom.co.uk/

Thursday, 31 March 2011

Advertising, Knobs and Fruitcakes

I loved the time I spent working in advertising: I had japes and larks and got to sit at my desk, pissed and howsyerfather. I met fellow like-minded humans who became my drinking buddies and didn’t seem arsed that I had a gob the size of Scotland and a tendency to ‘let myself down’. No, it was happy days; we got pissed, we pissed around and furthermore, we took the piss. And the remarkable thing was, that at the end of the month someone would very kindly put some money in my bank account. Happy days, indeed.

I was that lunch...
Note (and applaud) this bird's vice-like grip on her vodka beaker as she grabs
a few well earnt z's after a lunch break out on the lash.

            Of course, there were times that I’d be troubled by some knob in a suit to actually do something in return for this money. Bit harsh. Or some fruitcake of a creative would waft into my line of vision and bleat on about ‘creative values’ and ‘mid-tones’ and the suchlike, and then I’d say something like, “It’s all in hand,” and add a confirming nod, just to reassure them (and get shot of them), so I could get back to pissing around.
            Now it must be said, (and to introduce some clarity on the matter) that not all suits were knobs, nor indeed were all creatives fruitcakes; it’s just that the worst knobs were invariably suits and the worst fruitcakes were invariably creatives, (although I do recall, on one occasion calling a Creative Director, ‘a tit in a trance’ for good measure during a verbal ding-dong exchange we were having – and interfering with my play time).   
            And the brilliant thing about these creative types, is that they properly got to piss around in work time under the guise of ‘being creative’. Have a butchers at what they did to an old Scottish and Newcastle ad from my early years. Cover your eyes, children…

Of particular note, the amusing tag line, "The one you don't down in one".

And this is the result of what drunken production people get up to in the afternoons...

            I’ve worked at quite a few advertising agencies over my 14 years in the trade and a couple of publishing houses too. Strangely, when I used to resign (to flounce from one unsuspecting company to another) some of them actually seemed sorry to see me go. Apparently, I was a ‘character’ and amongst being rat-arsed in the afternoons, it wasn’t unheard of for me to sometimes slip up and perform my duties with an element of professionalism. Sometimes.
            And because we all pissed around (although some markedly more than others…) some top quality muckers of mine found the time to produce some legendary leaving cards for me. Here’s two of the best.

Look a treat, don't I?
This is the front page of an epic 6 page leaving card from my first job
(at Leo Burnett) - a clear indication of how relieved they were to get shot of me.

Looking a bit more of a sauce bucket in this one...
This company (LSDC) had a right tickle when I presented them with an opportunity to stop
paying me for doing fuck all; I was buggering off to Cyprus...

            So children, if you’re looking for a career in serial drinking and larks, remember, you could do a lot worse than pursue a job in advertising…

Friday, 25 March 2011

Road Rage, Scrotes and Rich Tea Biscuits

            I’ve tried to hold back, truly I have…but now, (and as they say in ‘Poltergeist’)...
They’re here”. And worse than that, they’ll be limping around these parrrts for the next six months. Yes, the annual event that is ‘Scrotefest’ is upon us once again.
Namely, the caravans have arrived.
Yes, the people for whom road rage was invented are back. The sun is out; the daffs are giving it the large, but any thoughts that turn to jumping in the funmobile and fucking off out of it for a bit, are immediately thwarted by these tea towel-wielding, tea flask pouring, (just how you like it, love) berks with their tidy barnets, ‘sweaters’ and packets of bastard Rich Tea biscuits. They’re out there now (the fuckers) and their sole purpose in life is to scupper the average motorist’s plans to reach any destination, anywhere on the planet, this side of fucking doomsday. Ye Gods! I’d love to chin them all!

You just know (as day is day, and night is night) that heading up this lot is a caravan containing Mr and Mrs Scrotey-Pants who are sucking on Trebor mints between tunlessly humming 'King Of The Road'.

Not only do these gusset scrapings take to the road under the pretence of acting in the ‘spirit of adventure’ but they do it at such a two-toed sloth pace that the rest of the motoring population are queued up behind them (unless of course, it’s a dual carriageway or a motorway, in which case proper traffic can breeze past the offenders with a loose hand gesticulation and hoot of abuse from the passenger window).     
And I’m sorry, but there’s no spirit of adventure. In fact, I’d say there’s more spirit of adventure in Prince Philip’s undercrackers. No, it’s basically dragging a micro version of your home around, with all your ‘little comforts’ and things ‘just so’ as obviously the thought of entering the ‘unknown’ (to you and me, a guest house, B&B or a hotel) renders them heady and breathless and reaching for a back copy of the Radio Times. Spirit of Adventure? My fucking arse.
And half of the fuckers go to the same fucking caravan site each year! Grrrrr! Have you ever clocked them? Hoards of the fuckers, all sitting in their poxy fold-up chairs and looking smug as they nurse a ‘nice cup of tea’. Someone pass me a flame thrower (and make it snappy).
And what’s the deal with the fuckers that tow a car behind them? I’m telling you, sometimes a six-year stretch for manslaughter looks like good value…learn a new language, save on gas bills, one up the Khyber…

This disgruntled motorist takes things into his own hands. Having followed his tormentors to their destination, he nicks the caravan keys during their afternoon nap and locks the fuckers in. Furthermore, he takes away their shit and piss bucket and steals their Rich Tea biscuits. He is a top man.

So, as you may have guessed, I’m not a happy bunny. I’ll never get to the beach this summer (and it’s only down the sodding road).
And if I ever hear any of these scrotes making mention of the ‘thrills of the open road’ (and all that fanny), I may not be accountable for my actions.
And furthermore, I (most definitely) fart in their general direction.
Thank you and goodnight.

Friday, 18 March 2011

Planet Earth, Cakeholes and Cutlery

The planet’s got a real tit on at the moment, hasn’t it? Throwing hissy fits all over the gaff, what with tsunamis, earthquakes, floods – and not to mention my knackered palm tree that waved the white flag after that winter we’ve just had. No, it’s a sad and very sorry state of affairs. To my thinking, somewhere along the line someone’s obviously given the planet a large dose of the hump and now it’s come out fighting, throwing its weight around and kicking some serious arse.
            Maybe we’ve all given the planet the hump…or maybe it’s just a spiteful fucker. I’ll have to ask it when I next put my recycling bin out.

Now if that's not a guilty expression then I'm a kipper's bollock..

            I only mention all this planet stuff because a) it ain’t good and b) the traditional mark of respect, as in a minute’s silence, is happening so often – before sporting events in particular – that I fear it’s beginning to dilute the significance of what we’re all keeping our cakeholes shut for. Take the six nations rugby last weekend: three matches and three lots of silences for events in Japan. And the weekend before that, the same maths, but that time for events in New Zealand. And I’m guessing that this weekend there’ll be a whole heap more across the sporting world. If the planet keeps on like this, we’ll all be mute. And nothing will get done. Perhaps we should all be left to do our own mark of respect – whatever suits the individual, and maybe the best one would be lobbing a pound (or two) into the charity pot.
There, I’ve done it. I’ve written something about a grown-up subject. I knew I had it in me. Someone pass me a damp flannel…
…now where was I?
Don’t know about you, but in recent years I’ve begun noticing that more and more humans appear to lack the basic ability to use a knife and fork properly. Dear oh dear. In fact, half of them look only one step away from doing away with cutlery completely and simply resorting to plunging their texting digits, wanking mitts or indeed, neanderthal faces into their plates of spaghetti hoops, lard and chips or buckets of doner kebab.

This dog's got more class in his paw than some sorts. He blindly refuses to eat
this kebab without the finest silver cutlery, a linen napkin and a set of Postman Pat cruets. 

Thinking about it, perhaps some food outlets should just dedicate an area for these sorts and lob some form of communal trough in it. That’ll keep them quiet for a bit – although I doubt they’ll be thinking about the poor souls in Japan.

Go on, love! Fill yer boots!
This one takes things a step further and takes her bacon butty raw...          

Friday, 11 March 2011

Short Stories, Moth Turd and Nuttiness

When I first decided to start writing (in earnest) a number of years ago, I limped off to Woolies (R.I.P.) in Camden High Street and parted with some cash in exchange for a spiral bound notebook. It was cheap, and it was certainly cheerful (as denoted by a selection of brightly coloured circles on its plastic cover), it would do the job; so job done.
I remember it fleetingly crossed my mind at the time – that to mark the occasion of finally flexing my Bic biro, it might be in order to get a bit heady and reckless and to splash out on some poncy, handmade effort, featuring ancient parchment paper and a cover made from soya bean pulp, mashed moth turd (or the suchlike) from one of the many independent shops in Camden that caters for the complete twat.
But just as I pictured myself sat on a crowded tube train, looking suitably smug and full of self-importance as I briskly flicked the ancient pages back and forth, pausing only to jot down (with sudden flourish) my latest earth shatteringly important note (or jaw juddering witty) that would leave awestruck onlookers thinking, “Just who is that incredible bird?” my Guardian Angel, Joe Hunt, swooped down, rested a firm hand on my shoulder and whispered in my ear, “Don’t be a bellend, love”.
And you can’t say fairer than that. So Woolies it was.
So now the notebook’s full of stuff. And as it should be. There’s over 60,000 words of my semi-autobiographical misspent youff bleatings, ‘The Big Banana’, (which I’ll tease out of its trailer one day, and finish). Plus the notes for all my stories from my book, ‘Tales from Around The Bend’ and the gumpf for other competition stories, monologues and sometimes, just random thoughts that come my way.
And I find the more I write, the more my head gets full of ideas. So I write the fuckers down. In my pad. And sometimes when I get these ideas, it’s because I’ve been sitting up late and having a marathon slurp, and unless I write them down – there and then – they’ll be gone from my head, forever.

Never doubt how much vodka can stimulate the old grey matter...
This was re-worked and ended up in my 3-part story, ‘Funny Old Life’ as ‘…dancing’s all about pretending to be someone you’re not, or remembering the someone you once were.” So there you go. Idea. Pissed. Pad. Sweet as.
Or maybe not.
The problem arises when I blearily grope my way downstairs in the morning, have a butchers at my notebook and see words I have absolutely no recollection of writing (and furthermore no meaning) and immediately fear that the men in white coats will be coming for me due to not being the ‘full shilling’.

'I want to go to America. I want to leave my house.'
A few points here; I like my current house and although I have nothing personal against America,
I would (given the choice) only leave my house to go to Australia (they like rugby more there and tend to cook dead things in their gardens - or anywhere, in fact).
A load more of ‘this kind of thing’ has (sadly?) been consigned to the bin by my husband, who sometimes does a ‘sweep’ of the lounge before I get up and disposes of any ‘nuttiness’ as he calls it.

There. You heard it here first...'The sea is no one's mama'...
The game is definately up with this one. Check out the meaningless
words and ropey handwriting.
No small wonder why my short story collection got its title…

Friday, 4 March 2011

Mr Whippy, Werther's Originals and Bullseye

Call me old fashioned…but picking up dog shit and carrying it around isn’t a good look, is it? And what’s more, the dogs don’t seem to go a bundle on it either. In fact, I’d even go as far to say they look somewhat ‘indignant’ and ‘put out’ by this turn around in modern day shitting etiquette.
I mean, time was a dog could go about its business and no one paid much notice to the squatting, frowned straining and Mister Whippy output. No, it was a good chance to spark up a fag, chat a bit of bollocks – if you were in company or, if I was back in deepest and darkest East London, it’d give me an opportunity to weigh up my chances of getting home in one piece with cash, dignity and fillings still intact. But not now. No siree. Whilst the dog’s pleading face is saying, “Just give me a bit of privacy here, buddy,” the owners eyes are zoomed in on the poor mutt’s rear end while frantically rustling around in their pockets for a shit pouch, anxious to let everyone know that they are responsible and not like some other dog owners, who ruthlessly leave their dog shit all over the gaff, willy nilly. Job done, they immediately steam in and pick up the (still steaming) turd.

Appalled by events witnessed in his forest, this distressed squirrel travels into town
in an attempt to obliterate images of doggie friends being routinely humilated.

And how they do it is beyond me. But they do, whilst the dog looks on as though he’s about to die of embarrassment and in the knowledge that all his doggie street cred has gone right out the window. And then it gets carried around until a suitable dog crap receptacle is located. Doesn’t make for a romantic walk does it? Some even shovel the shit pouch into their coat or jacket pockets, now that would put me right off my Werther’s Originals…  

This poor moo's foolishly smiling in the misguided belief that
she's being handed a bag of Pick 'n' Mix. Watch out, love!

Bizarrely, they just don’t show all this carry on in films – or soaps, come to that. I certainly don’t recall Dirty Den hoofing a bag of Wellard’s finest logs around Albert Square whilst manfully screeching, “Ere, I want a word with you!” to his latest victim. And I think it would be fair to say that Bill Sykes may not have appeared quite the invincible villain if he'd shovelled up Bullseye’s doings into a biodegradable bag before trotting off for a bit of Oom-Pah-Pah…dear oh dear… 

It's a plan, and it just might work...
Bill Sykes attempts to train Bullseye to crap into a strategically placed bowl on his bonce...