Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Pedj & Kelly

PP directed me to this video here, with the explanation: 'It's funny because it's French, and they're both straight', and I can't find it in my heart to disagree.

Saturday, December 23, 2006

I have spent too long in london.

The clues:

1. Becoming quite irate that Falmouth Tesco is a bit slow to serve, and has NO BLOODY HUMOUS.

2. I wander into my Best Mate's shop to say hello.

BM: Hello!

I make my greeting.

BM recoils.

BM: What did you just do?
ME: ?
BM: You kissed me on both sides of my face.

The manager is standing in the background, She has witnessed what just happend and is staring in horror.

MANAGER: You kissed her on both sides of her face!
ME: Did I?
BM: You've never done that before.
MANAGER: You've never done that before.

I leave, burning with shame.

3. I read in the Media Guardian that Talkback has thrown a party for 'talent' at which at least one Green Wing actor was present. I have heard nothing of this, and despite the fact that I was in Cornwall anyway, and so couldn't have gone THROW A MASSIVE HISSY FIT.

Later I complain to my girlfriend, who is stuck out in rural France, looking after her severely ill mother. She is very sympathetic, and rightly so, frankly. This is a hard time for me, and I need lots of care and attention.

So I decide to take the dogs for a walk, from Flushing to Mylor, as tramping through good honest cornish mud might put me back in touch with what's important and shit.

Originally uploaded by jamesandthebluecat.
Actually it's great: the dogs behave (Head Dog gets a bit bouncy, but I keep my arms folded so he can't chew off any extremities) and the combination of low sun and sea fog lends the walk a pleasingly gothic touch.

Back in the car, I sit and reflect. It is good here, away from the politics and iniquities of the capital. Head Dog grins at me. Lurchers are quite grinny dogs anyway, but this one is a bit deerhoundy and a bit saluki(ey) as well, so he does have quite a pleasing face when he's not savaging my limbs.

I lean out and ruffle his ears. He is a good dog, at heart.

Terrible noxious, yet somehow organic fumes suddenly fill the car. The windows steam up, and the radio turns to static. Head Dog's grin suddenly has a rather pleased quality.


Tuesday, December 19, 2006

The Worst Christmas Presents I Have Ever Given* (*not Received, note, but Given)

To: My gran, last christmas

This weird game, which was like a cross between Scrabble and Boggle, in which you dropped Scrabble cubes (not blocks) into a a grid, then pushed a slidey thing which supposedly jumbled the cubes randomly, so players could then argue whether 'sploof' (the sound made when someone messages you on Skype Chat) is actually a word (it isn't).

In fact, none of the pieces fit together properly, so you wrestled with the slidey thing for ages, then suddenly all the Scrabble Cubes exploded out of the grid at astonishing velocity, blinding relatives and upsetting the cat (it's dead now).

To: Best Mate, about nine years ago

One of those carved nut things, which when you open it, reveals a carved beetle thing, which wobbles its legs like it's alive. BM opens it:

BM: Some of its legs seem to be missing.
ME: Oh, maybe that's why Debs (girlfriend at the time) gave it back to me.
BM throws carved nut thing at my head.

ME: (outraged) Oh my god, you are so ungrateful!

To: My Little Brother, about (jesus fucking christ) twenty years ago (seriously, jesus fucking christ)

A penknife. Only one of the blades had broken off, and the other bit, which seemed to be an odd hollow pointy thing, was covered in rust, which flaked off when you tried to open it. I bought this at a carboot sale in the mid-december rain at Swanpool carpark and decided to hand it over to my brother as an early christmas present, so I wouldn't have to bother getting him a proper present.

I was later shouted at by my mum, who explained that it wasn't the crapness of the thing that was the issue, so much as the fact that I had extorted the money to pay for it from my brother himself right then and there, and afterwards shouted at him for not showing (again) the appropriate gratitude.

If I was my parents, I probably would have drowned me.

Friday, December 15, 2006

My Tornado Hell

The greatest Evening Standard article ever written.

Pick your favourite line. Mine so far is "A black roof tile speared the American walnut floating shelf, scattering our younger daughter Ella's birthday cards", but there are so many others.

I hope Happy the cat turns up though, obvs.

UPDATE: oh, sorry, look, Happy turns up at the end. Took me a while to get that far. What with MY EYES BLEEDING.

UPDATE 2: to be fair, I'm with her on the Scientolology thing.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Coke hates kittens

AKA "Large corporation in 'behaving like bastards' shock."

Looky-loo, coca cola rips off my mate's band's video!

This is Seven Seconds of Love original video 'Ninja'
This is the Coke Advert

Normally I find this sort of thing a bit tricky, as it's hard to copyright ideas and so on. But this one is taking the piss somewhat. A man explains via the medium of pulling faces.

The sad thing is, I know the band as a whole to have the moral fibre of a jellybaby, and would probably have handed over the entire video rights for fifty pence and a collective handjob.

Coca cola, you have lost my trust. As a brand, you are in my eyes diminished. The red in your logo now stands, as far as I am concerned, for the blood of the innocent, creative, kitten-animating artist, trampled in the rush to make your product seem both 'hip' and 'now'. I hate you. Coca Cola, I hate you utterly.

I won't be boycotting though, as I never drank the ghastly fizzy sugar syrup in the first place.

UPDATE: all right, yes, technically it's the ad agency who ripped them off. But now Coke have been alerted to the crime via m'blog, and HAVE CHOSEN TO DO NOTHING. So it's okay to be cross with them still.

Also, as Richard has pointed out in the comments, Guiness/their ad agencies are bastards n'all. In fact there's a long and distinguished history of ad agencies whipping stuff from penniless creatives. There's probably a wiki somewhere.

*wanders off*

Seven Stages of Rejection.

There are seven stages a comedy writer must inevitably go through after a script is commissioned (in this case Project TSTWTMCISOBOMOWMG), then the final result is rejected:


'Are you sure you read the right script? The one I wrote? The good one? Seriously though, are you sure you read it properly? It's quite complex written down, you might have missed a bit. You can have another go, I don't mind waiting.'


(I seem to skip this one usually.)


'Oh crap, somebody read the blog. Or saw me do that thing at that party. Or found the binbags.'


'Does my hair look okay to you?'


'I still think you read the wrong script.'


'It's too late now, I've still got your money! Hahahahha! You idiots!'


'Hmm, if I change the names, which bits of the script can I re-use for the other thing I'm writing at the moment?'

UPDATE: The ending on this post is a bit weak, frankly, but people shouldn't read too much into this, as the Project TSTWTMCISOBOMOWMG script was particularly strong. Also, Evans has a new green coat.

MORE UPDATE: Ooh, it might not have been completely rejected after all, I may just have to take out some of the killings. This will call for a new opening however. And a new ending. Maybe I'll move those bits over to make a standalone short film. In which the dialogue consists mostly of 'aaaaaaargh splat'.

Saturday, December 09, 2006

A realdoc writes

About the ever-spiralling decay of an institution we'll only miss when it's too late and it's gone. Still, as long as most tabloids' theme this christmas is 'oh noes, the PCs are taking away our Christmasses!', I'm sure it'll get the attention it deserves.


I'm going to be guilty of the most astonishing bad taste, putting this in the same post as the above link, but there we are, fuck it.

Walking back from the shops today, I found myself walking behind a blind man, tap-tapping carefully along with his white stick. Because my average walking speed is slightly faster than that of a man already running quite fast, it became apparent that I was going to have to overtake him. Now I imagine that if you're blind, having someone swoosh past you with no warning could be a bit scary, so I stepped right out into the road to give him plenty of space.

Of course true irony would have been if I hadn't seen that lorry coming, but I did, so it was fine. I went back on the pavement, and then saw, in the distance, another blind man with a stick, on the same side of the pavement, coming straight towards my one.

So I stood there for a while, and just couldn't work out what to do. As they drew inexorably closer, part of me wanted to shout out 'Hey, blind guys!'. But this seemed somehow rude. Maybe I should run back and stand between them with my arms stretched out, braced for the crash ? Or I could take the arm of one and gently steer him round the other one, but this would require some kind of explanation, and all I could think of to say was 'Come with me if you want to live', which seemed a tad excessive.

I stood, frozen with indecision, and yet I could not look away. And I'll be honest, as I watched two blind men slowly and determinedly head towards each other, both oblivious to the others' existence, a dark and terrible part of me thought: this might end up being very very funny.

What actually happened of course, was they heard each others' sticks tapping on the ground, so one stepped politely aside for the other, and then they continued on their way.


Friday, December 08, 2006

Peanuts vs Marvel

Two great American mythologies merge (from the ever-reliable Drawn illustration blog).

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Series 2 puppet opening

Accusations have made, in the previous posts comments thread but one, that no thought was made of putting puppets in Green Wing. In fact I did a 'puppet recap' scene for Series 2, which, bewilderingly, was never used. So I thought I'd put it up here instead.

UPDATE: Actually, now I read them again, it's not that surprising they weren't used.


Puppets of MAC, MARTIN and GUY hanging out of the back of a cardboard ambulance.

But Mac, I don’t want to die!

Don’t worry Martin, I’m sure this will all work out fine!

Oh no! I ‘kissed’ my own mum!


Ambulance teeters a bit then crashes below the level of the booth. An unseen hand flings blue confetti up in the air. Then silence.
Suddenly, ten finger puppet BROWNIES appear over the top of the booth.

(squeaky) Look! Bodies in the water! Come on everyone! Remember the Brownie code.

They disappear, and the limp puppet bodies of MAC PUPPET and GUY PUPPET flop over the top of the booth.

Oh no! Where’s Guy?

We looked everywhere, but we could not see him.*


Mac is not very well. We should take him to a hospital.

We’ll take you!

(feebly) Don’t.... tell....

Don’t tell anyone about this part? All right Mac, I promise.

MAC PUPPET droops limply again. BOYCE puppet pops up.

What’s this, what’s this?

Oh Doctor Boyce! Guy ‘kissed’ his own mum, then drove into the sea, and now he’s gone, and we were rescued by Brownies!

Well don’t worry, Martin, because I’m going to make everything all right now!

NURSE PUPPET pops up, showering BOYCE PUPPET with kisses.

Oh Doctor Boyce, you’re the handsomest doctor in the whole world! Mmmm kissy kissy!

BROWNIES pop up again.

And that’s what happened!

BOYCE stands up and takes a bow. Pull back to see a sign saying ‘Edinburgh Fringe’, and a small group of tourists, all applauding wildly. BOYCE grins, then looks alarmed as a hand reaches out, and NURSE PUPPET hauls him back behind the booth.

Oh and there was a bit about Doctor Mancoo as well:



Carboard car careering wildly out of control.

Brrrrm Brrrrrm! Ah! My brakes!

Car hits a model tree, then paper flames rise up and engulf the car.
Finally a bandaged MANCOO PUPPET rises into view, hooked up to a model IV machine.

Beep... beeep.... beeep....

BOYCE PUPPET appears next to the MANCOO PUPPET

(to audience) So Dr. Mancoo ended up in his own hospital, and no-one ever found out who cut his brakes.

Cut to-
A school assembly full of children.


Kids applaud wildly. BOYCE stands up and takes a bow. One or two teachers start clapping, rather uncertainly. Suddenly the NURSE PUPPET drags BOYCE back into the booth, which starts shaking violently. Teachers start ushering the kids out, rather speedily.

* This was to do with the original plan for Guy, where he washed up back in Switzerland (?), where he went feral and was befriended by a pack of wolves (we spent ages on this). This was then down-graded to living out of a box near the hospital, and then dropped altogether.

Some of the alternative endings are fun, but obviously I won't put them up until the special has gone out (January 4th)

Sunday, December 03, 2006

A bookseller speaks:

"The ISBN number used in Torchwood for Emily Dickinson's poems was wrong. It started in 019 the book was the Faber edition of the complete poems, and as such would have an ISBN starting in 0571. A schoolboy error. "

Good work PP.

UPDATE: PP also informs me that the quote 'O Captain, my Captain' comes from Walt Whitman, not Emily Dickinson, which I like to think I would have known, but probably I wouldn't. Also, I gave up on Torchwood after episode two, so I don't have the faintest idea what he's talking about.

ANOTHER UPDATE: Torchwood - Episode 10. I LOLed.


Back in Cornwall now, after an absence of about six weeks. My first impulse was to head into town and see if the Tiny Tears doll is still wedged into the second indentation in the 'W' in the Woolworths sign, but instead I headed for my parents' to pick up the post.

Heading up the steep lane on the last bit of the journey, I could see the figure of m'mother in the distance, accompanied by her two dogs, Dog A: small and bouncy whippet, and Dog B: Mostly Deerhound, the list of whose crimes breaks roughly into the killings (which also involve eatings) and the the eatings (which for all I know involved a killing), and now have a semi-regular listing in the Guardian Weekend Guide. Sadly, he probably gets the Express.

Mother waved, and the two dogs detached themselves from her side. Dog A trotted prettily towards me, tail wagging in a friendly fashion, by which time Dog B (much much biggger) had crossed the distance between us and had my forearm clenched firmly between his jaws.


Finally he lets go, dances around a bit and goes back to my mother.

MOTHER: (sympathetically) Tch. Did you forget to fold your arms?

There was a massive storm last night all over Cornwall, and fallen trees litter the roads and pathways, although oddly no-one heard a thing (Police Baffled). I picked up a broken branch to carry back, because we live off the land down here, and Dog B immediately seized the end of it, growling fiercely and making it approximately ten times heaver. Apparently he 'thought it was a broom'.

Later on I sit at my parents' and nurse a cup of tea. Dog B creeps up to me and sadly lays his heavy head upon my knee, his large brown eyes gazing up into mine.

ME: Oh fuck you.

UPDATE: the post, by the way, included a small knitted Spider-Man finger puppet, sent to me from Chile. Thanks Paula.