Journey through space to the Planet Fabulous, where the Ruler of the Universe will see you shortly.

Friday, May 28, 2004

A Common Beauty

The excitement mounts! The imminent release of the latest Girls Aloud single 'The Show' means I'm as giddy as a schoolgirl with a pencil case full of leaking Tipp-Ex. And the overly-favourable report on Popjustice's site about the whole shebang simply contributes to my good self being on a hair trigger and about to spangle the whole lounge floor.

Yet, how difficult is it to instil any joy in any of my peers? My dear Wife is refusing point blank to get out of bed tomorrow to see my bacofoil-clad damsels debut on CD:UK, despite the fact I won't be able to sleep a wink the whole of tonight and, for once, I'll be tossing in my slumbers for a whole different reason. I cornered him while he was cooking only last night, to try one last push at getting some excitement about the whole thing going. At that point, he was listening to something worthy; he'd been to see Rufus Wainwright on the weekend, and now wasn't interested in hearing anything that wasn't painfully crafted over several years. And included a harp.

"But!" I spluttered, trying in vain to instil some enthusiasm in him. "But! The video alone is set in a beauty salon!"

He humphed as he skinned the organic, free-range, corn-fed chicken breast. "Surely they're a little bit out of their depth, there."

He thought for a second, hand on hip and unintentionally tossing his fabulous golden locks to look at me.

"Perhaps they thought it was a chip shop," he added.

Wednesday, May 26, 2004

Status Quo

There are two constants in this world.

1. My dear Wife will always get stopped going through customs.
2. Lulu will look younger every year.

Tuesday, May 25, 2004

My Favourite Untrue Story About Me

Being so rich, beautiful and popular makes one rife for gossip. But as I'm very rarely any of these, I do so enjoy it when the odd story of my actions gets relayed to me by one of my many spies. Usually in a pub. And usually with the more salacious angle heightened to a point where I get a text from Cynthia Payne asking me to back off her turf.

Now. No smoke without fire, I say, but lately I heard this most wonderful ditty about yours truly that has absolutely no basis - but! It's such a brilliant tale, I frankly wish it was. It concerns one of my lovely ex's who shall remain nameless for the moment. Now, the true part of the story concerns the fact that, while we were going out for around two years, only one year of that was spent being faithful. During the subsequent year, monogamy was something our coffee table was made out of.

Seemingly, I would alleviate my guilty conscience by showering him with presents. For each discretion, I would bring him a CD he'd wanted. A piece of software for his course. Take him out for a meal. And this ostensibly continued for some time. But time wears on, and guilt is something that can be eroded...

Apparently, on my final visit to him, I took fourteen pencil sharpeners and a penny I'd found on my way there.

Star-Fecker

Celebrities I have bumped into during the last week:

Rupert Everett, wearing a white t-shirt very well, with a fag hag on his arm.
Dylan Moran, looking sober.
Jeremy Sheffield, who apparently goes to my hairdressers and is still ignoring me.
John S-Club-7-Now-Les-Mis wearing glasses and a ponytail, on his way to the French Revolution.
Marc Warren of the BBC's Hustle, in a remarkably tight t-shirt hanging around Soho. Now, I'm not one to cast tittle-tattle, but...

Monday, May 24, 2004

Non-Joke Time

Two gays walk into a bar, which unfortunately isn't the prelude to a joke. I could have told you about the three pieces of tarmac that go into a bar, one red, one black and one green - and the barman refuses to serve the latter as he's a 'complete cyclepath', but that only works when you say it aloud to highlight the similarities between the words 'psychopath' and 'cyclepath', and while I love you all, there's no way I'm travelling around to each of you to tell you what is, in retrospect, a rather poor joke. Anyway. These two gays - let's call them Lee and Declan walk into a bar. Declan is a little quiet, and his gaze keeps flicking from one bottle to the next on the rack behind the frumpy bar-frau with the pineapple hairdo, until he's completely alienated her with his non-eye contact. I push forward to give the minty cow the order and marvel at her irregular, yellowing teeth when I hear a satisfied 'Ah!' behind me. Let it be noted for the record that I was in no way responsible for that 'Ah!' of almost climatic proportions; while Declan and I did indeed dally in some sweaty activity once, it was before the advent of pound coins, and both of us would rather sleep with Vanessa Feltz before we do that again. No, it is a little-known fact that Declan is a master of cocktails, and is responsible for in invention of The Flaming Handbag, which turned out to be a polite little knicker-loosener for everyone who attended my 25 birthday. And it appears that he's finally ended his quest to find the ultimate ingredient of his latest effort - The Rohypnol. It's with this one that he wants to give something back to the community, and hopes that the recipe becomes famous, purely - and for this reason alone - so that every man can then walk into a bar and say, "I'll have a pint of Stella, and a Rohypnol for the lady."

Dead Irish Poets

I went to see Declan, my Evil Best Friend, this weekend.

"So, how have you been?" he asked between drags on his cigarette. He spoke like a machine gun, the smoke curling around his fingers. I hadn't even sat down at this point.

"Fine, fine," I said, gingerly lowering myself into his presence. I wanted to take him to task before he started on me, and asked him about Bedford. It was a mess. For years he had been using dark magicks, firing curses down past the M25 to try and destroy me. I usually get a cold feeling at the back of neck before a strike is launched, although the shield my peers installed over London has kept him at bay for some time, most of his nefarious assaults are deflected off - and Bedford bears the brunt. The sight I'd seen through the train window on this journey was shocking in its desolation.

I asked him what he'd been doing. "I was bored," he said airily. There was no sense of remorse when he added, "My bad."

I opened my mouth to berate him, but he shushed me. "I see the Corrs are still alive."

It wasn't a question.

I looked blankly at him for a second. Declan stubbed out his cigarette with a vicious twist, and then threw up his hands like a disappointed Italian don.

"Honestly, I gave you three simple tasks..." he said with a sigh.

Friday, May 21, 2004

Great Mysteries of the World Solved: Part X

The good thing I've noticed about Cher is that she never has a hangover. Here she was, resplendent in the most ludicrously large sunhat, letting the spring grass tickle between her fingers as the morning grew. The rest of us looked, frankly, like a car crash.

"So, what are we going to do today?"

There was a collective groan. Dame Angela Lansbury took umbrage at the sun and forced her large pair of Jackie O sunglasses up her nose with the palm of her hand. She always claimed that they were the actual Jackie O glasses, but we reckoned the flecks of red in the left corner were just the red juice from a 99 she'd had trouble eating. I squinted in the sunlight, on the verge of blaming her for my current malady - it was her who had introduced us all to using alcopops as a mixer. But then I recalled it was my good self who said we should try at least one drink from every country in her antediluvian atlas, the one that smelt of attics and didn't have Australia in it.

"Dears, I plan on doing nothing." And with that, she toppled backwards, skirts billowing upwards like a shaken duvet.

We lay there for a good ten minutes, seemingly trying to contact the living. The world seemed utterly still around us, as steady as the sunshine. The leaves barely moved in the heat rising from the grass. I rolled up my dinner jacket for use as a pillow; the bow tie I'd borrowed off Gaz Topp was long gone - left in a gutter somewhere in Hackney, one supposes. The jacket made a poor rest, and smelt tremendously of hookah smoke.

Cher tutted like a Geiger Counter. "But it is a lovely day. We should do something."

I told her, in no uncertain terms, that I would be willing to partake in any activity she suggested as long as it didn't involve moving, any sort of fun, or loud noises - particularly whooping. I thought that was perfectly reasonable to be getting on with the day. Dame Aggie made some tasteless crack about that being like every other man she'd slept with, merely cementing that I was not even on the verge of being ready for breakfast.

"We do need a new celebrity hobby, dears," Dame Aggie conceded. I wasn't keen on the idea. I recalled she was the one who decided we should all take up Laser Quest. Two black eyes later and I'd discovered the real danger of pensioner blood-lust. I suppose it came from attempting to be first in the queue to get the dented tins in Aldi.

"We could always phone Kevin Spacey. He's normally got some great ideas of what to do when he's in this park, dears. Admittedly, they're normally at night, and nor-"

She was shushed by Judith Hann, former Tomorrow's World presenter, as two joggers came into earshot. I glared at them with a building, irrational hatred; not only were they beautiful, but also capable of standing. They smoothly ran past us with ne'er a pant, and in the direction of the lake-side path, taking my wrath with them.

"All I shall say is that there's loads to do around here," she affirmed, flapping her hands as if this would strike something of interest with minimum effort. Her bangles clattered like wire coat hangers.

"We couldn't phone him anyway. He lost his phone," stated Cher.

Cher hadn't got a mobile. She just dialled out.

"MARMITE PATTING!" yelled Brian Blessed. He'd fallen asleep in the shaded area some way off, and some children had mistaken him for a climbing frame. They wouldn't be doing that again, and squealed that tear-stained anguish of the under ten all the way back to their parents.

"Now Brian, that's just cruel," shouted Judith Hann over her shoulder. "Nothing's been proved."

"HOBBY!" he yelled back.

Judith and I exchanged a puzzled look. I couldn't help but notice how her hangover had drained her a little of her colour, leaving her flawless skin looking like a Greek marble masterpiece. She really was very beautiful.

Dame Aggie struggled to sit up, elbowing at her handbag for leverage. I've seen tents that were erected more gracefully. "What's he on about now, dears?"

"Marmite patting," stated Cher.

"Oh! Marmite patting! Wonderful. Christopher Lee taught me," she said with some sudden airs and graces. "He finds it very relaxing."

We braced ourselves for another one of her overly-visual stories. There was an expectant air, mostly from Dame Aggie.

"What? You've never patted Marmite?" she asked after a few minutes of trying to catch one of our eyes.

I opened my mouth, and closed it again. Some of my adventures were for another day.

Dame Aggie barked a laugh laced with genuine surprise, and with a resolute "Right!", hauled herself to her feet and hobbled off across the grass in the direction of the corner shop. She cut quite a sight in her evening dress topped with her woollen shawl, but even from this distance you could see the green stains on the knees from the celebratory skid she did from last night's impromptu football game. Which was odd as it was played on some baize in a butcher's window.

We took a moment to enjoy the quiet. Brian's snores merged with the dull rumble of the distant traffic, and Judith contented herself by modelling the molecular stricture of Marmite using a pile of balls and sticks she always appeared to carry with her. I refuted the vertical, admiring the way the sun lit the leaves in the tree above us, throwing rivulets of gold through the gaps.

Dame Aggie arrived back with a sigh, sat down heavily and threw a bag of bacon sandwiches into the centre. From her gargantuan handbag, she produced five paper plates and a jar of Marmite.

"Now, each take a scoop and put it on your plate," she said.

"And then what?" asked Cher.

"You pat it."

We exchanged looks.

"And then what?" asked Cher.

"It goes white."

I snorted derisively, and told her to stop being silly. She gave me a serious expression, and I buckled under it, and started patting away. After a few minutes, we all got a sense of rhythm going, and I have to say that the gentle motion was helping clear my head somewhat. I stole a look at my plate.

"Well, will you look at that," I exclaimed. The colour had indeed changed, going towards a light brown. "It's gone kaki!"

"BABY SHIT," bellowed Brian, offering his opinion.

"Brian!" cried Judith. There were, after all, children present. Just not as near to him as they were before.

"I told you," said Dame Aggie, fiddling in her handbag for a cloth. "And if you keep going, it goes white!"

"The agitation must fold in air, making it lighter in colour!" exclaimed Judith in her gorgeous presenting tones. She was blissfully happy when she could explain anything with science.

What a blissful way to spend a morning, I reflected. Indeed, the morning had drained away slowly, and we were looking at a gorgeously sunny afternoon. And it didn't hurt to look skyward any more.

Cher was looking at the light-coloured spread on her fingers with an odd curiosity. "So, can we do something now?"

I smacked my lips together, noticing how dry my throat was suddenly. "Hair of the dog?" I suggested.

"We're back to Kevin Spacey again," said Judith, in a rare moment.

I asked Dame Aggie whether she happened to have brought her antiquated atlas with her. "We only got as far as Constantinople," I reminded.

She swapped her Jackie O's for some half-moons chained to her neck and poked around in her bag. "Ah, Constantinople!" she gushed, fixing the glasses unevenly. The book opened with an escaping mote of dust that was lifted by the sunshine, and she ran her fingers over the Post-It note amends she'd made inside. "According to this, for this one, we're going to need some Turkish Raki. Oh! And a galvanised bucket..."

Ah. Happy days.

Wednesday, May 19, 2004

All-Hit Radiooo!

With a joy that can only be counted in Dolly Mixtures, I've discovered the joy of Smash Hits Radiooo. Bless them, they only have three records to their name, but as one is Girls Aloud, I'm blissfully happy. Every hour, you can count upon a dusting down of Sound of the Underground with a frequency that suggests that the CD was stuck in the only other player they had.

We should really club together and get them a Now That's What I Call Music album. At least if that got stuck, it may keep them on the air for at least another week.

Hypercybernterweb radio is a new thing on me - I thought you could only get pornography and Russian brides sent down to your laptop, but now it seems you can get everything. Why, as I type, I've found an old music station playing the classics!

Oh. It's Dana singing now.

Fuck me, she likes everything, doesn't she?

Tuesday, May 18, 2004

What Else I Have Learned Today

He's not flirting. His right eye has a squint.

Fascinating Facts! Lulu

Things We Found Out Using The Web In Under An Hour

Boom-bang-a-bang - it's Lulu, everyone!

THINGS THAT ARE CONFIRMED
Lulu was born on November 3rd, 1948 and according to her biography 'She started singing almost immediately'. While checking to poo-poo this, I discovered that foetal vocal cords do work 18 weeks after conception - while still in the womb. Please, do not forward this Simon Cowell else we'll get another version of S Club.

Lulu started singing publicly at the age of 4. Ten years later, she was discovered by Marion Massey, who wasn't put off by her bizarre ensemble of a fur hat and curlers in her hair she was wearing at the time. Says Marion, "I was very intrigued by her. It wasn't her singing; there was something tremendously magnetic about this girl. I knew she had the makings of a great star." As you may have discovered in previous Fascinating Facts, the human body does indeed possess a magnetic field, but this has never been able to attract more than a household iron.

There is no record of how tall Marion is, or whether she can press woollen clothing on a low setting.

Lulu was born 'Marie McDonald McLaughlin Lawrie', which can be anagrammed into 'Hi! I'm a call-girl and cruel madwomen'. She got her name when Marion exclaimed "That girl is one lulu of a singer!" Thank goodness she never said 'Fucker!' or 'Shit-Hot!'.

From 1969 to 1973, Lulu was married to pop star Maurice Gibb, when she was just 20, in a Buckinghamshire church. She wanted a quiet wedding, but over 1000 well-wishers turned up, and several were hurt as they swarmed towards her green Rolls-Royce.

Lulu is five foot one inch tall. Which is, in that universal measurement, is around ten bags of sugar high. Which is roughly 4000 calories, which converts into 0.006238 horsepower. The average Rolls Royce is 21 horsepower, meaning Lulu is approximately 1/3366th of the car that drove her to her wedding.

After Gibb, Lulu got married to hairdresser John Frieda - which is enough to make your hair curl. They had a son, Jordan Frieda (porn name, oh yes) who is now an actor, presumably with lovely hair and a nice voice. Lulu and Frieda lasted twenty years together before their split. Ends.

Over her 36-year career Lulu has enjoyed 16 top 40 hits. Her UK career hit its height when she entered the Eurovision Song Contest in 1969 with Boom-Bang-A-Bang. It provided her with her highest UK chart position - number two.

Oddly, Boom-Bang-A-Bang was the second choice for the entry; the first one was by a young songwriting team, Elton John and Bernie Taupin. They were gutted when they found out their efforts had been passed over. Still. She won. Bless.

Lulu has an accomplished TV career too, with a spate of shows in the sixties, and also starred with Sidney Poitier in 'To Sir, With Love' in 1967.

Of late, Lulu's been a little bit of a career vampire, and bolstering her uneasy position in the limelight by preying on unsuspecting celebs. Ronan Keating, Atomic Kitten - they've all fallen into her mandibles. Two most notable occurrences of this are in 1990 when she guested on the Take That hit song Relight My Fire. In May 2002, she was seen dallying around with 21-year-old soap jawline Stuart Manning; they said it didn't work because of the age difference. We said it didn't work because she dried up around the time of the Nolan's last hit, and he was so gay he was one of the only pink things that could be seen from space. Well, I ask you.

In the space year 2000, Lulu was awarded an OBE for her contribution to the entertainment industry. This is despite 'Red Alert with the National Lottery', which first screened in November 1999, which almost killed the National Lottery brand. It is not to be confused with 'Red Alert', the role-playing game where an evil power seeks to take over the West using any means necessary, including mind control.

THINGS THAT ARE UNCONFIRMED
Lulu actually moved into The Ivy Restaurant in 1984. Since then, she can be found at Table 43 - a booth at the back, near the fire exit. At the end of the night, she'd drunk so much that she's keeled over into her complimentary breadsticks, and the staff just draw a curtain around it until she wakes in the morning for her first audience. Regular diners with her are well-known licky lesbian couple Betty Boothroyd and Patricia Routledge (who always order the gammon) and they regularly smuggle in Pot Noodles for the pint-sized pop princess betwixt their ample cleavage.

Lulu is made of a titanium alloy, and was fitted with a RAM63 fog horn (now discontinued). If the RAM63 fails, Lulu will no longer be able to perform 'Shout'.

5 foot 1 inch Lulu was made to play an Ewok by her agent in the film Return of the Jedi. She is the one who gets shot by the AT-ST during the final push of the Rebellion, and did her own stunts.

Staff at The Ivy have created a cocktail in the honour of the singer. 'The Lulu' contains three parts gin, two parts absinthe, four parts gin, eight parts scotch, five parts gin, two parts Duckhams Hypergrade, seven parts Benson and Hedges, and a teaspoon of those little silver balls you find on cakes.

Monday, May 17, 2004

Most Definitely Aloud

Ah! Like the sirens of old calling Ulysses, your beloved ruler had an email from Girls Aloud this week. It appears that someone in London has carelessly left their recording studio unlocked for the weekend, as the quintet is on the brink of releasing another song. Bliss! Adulate! Jubilation! Here, my four lasses (and a fifth one who looks like she won a contest in the Liverpool Echo to be a member of a band for a day) are now poised to fill our ears like an overly-familiar friend in the cinema.

Yes, there is a story attached there, and no, you are certainly not hearing it.

I am celebrating, for the charts have been empty without the Girls, the music channels on our Skybox oddly vapid. One must instantly start camping outside HMV to secure fantastic first-day sales for them! Oh, the joy of seeing them on Saturday morning TV once more! And they can come back to perform Wembley, when they finally build the new stadium - to which there are pythonic problems, as I'm sure you're aware. It is a fact that the location of Salisbury Cathedral was decided on by releasing a white hart, and wherever it was felled by a hunter, that's where they would build the religious basilica. They're trying the same with the site of the new Wembley, but the only celebrity they can really spare for the event is TV portly chanteuse Michelle McManus. And as she dwells somewhere near Bermondsey, we do reckon she will get as far as hoofing it down as far as the corner shop before getting speared, so for future reference, all major performances will now be accessible via London Bridge.

Right. Now. Where was I?

Ah, yes. My beloved girls. Please, all of you, be dears and support their next release with all your gusto and charm. For too long there has been a glass ceiling for female pop artists. At least if Girls Aloud get their next single to Number One the ceiling is more likely to be mirrored.

Friday, May 14, 2004

The Incredible Tightness of Being

I went for a quick snifter of vodka last night with dear Gertie. You can time when he's leaving almost down to the minute; normally when he realizes it's his round next.

Thursday, May 13, 2004

OH! MY! GAAAAAD!

I wandered past the television last night, wet from the shower and clad only in a skimpy towel. While this detail is unimportant, I can now assume that 80% of you have now been sick, while the other 20% have reached for a tissue. It is correct to assume that this 20% are the ones that talk to you on busses and wear tin-foil hats, you know.

Anyway, I happened to sit down and waggle the aerial (not a euphemism), I noticed that the UK version of Queer Eye for the Straight Guy was on. Now, I used to really like the US Queer Eye, until my favourite ex pointed out the one flaw in it:

"Oh my gad!"

"Ohmygadohmygadohmygad!"

"Oh! My! Gaaaaaaaad!"

"Oh!"

"My!"

"Gad!"

And repeat ad nauseam for a full hour.


Heaven forefend if there's ever a drinking game.

Anyway, this UK version. I have decided that I don't like it when there is more than three Squealing Men With Nice Nails in the room. Gays Of A Certain Volume should be made to communicate by semaphore. I suppose I'll allow them the Pride Flag to do it BUT ONLY IF THERE ARE NO EXTRAVAGANT ARM GESTURES.

Sigh. I do dislike it when I have to interact with the overly moisturised maries with any self-pretence of celebrity about them.


(blink)


One day - yes, one day - I shall become self-aware.

Wednesday, May 12, 2004

Millennium

You lot. You're an odd bunch, aren't you?

About a month ago, I decided I'd find out who exactly was reading this dastardly pink site. Well, it's a rum bunch of humanity, to be sure and I'm waving at you now. And on the advent of the thousandth visitor since I installed the site counter, I thought I'd share with you the utterly fascinating and wonderfully bizarre things that people have put in their search engine to land here!

'"sandra bullock" incontinence'
Ha! What do you know that we don't, dear reader? Did one of you find the bus from Speed in a backlot somewhere, only to find the seat reeking of piss? If so, do tell!

'hot pink glitter bedding'
Goodness, some of you really have no taste, do you?

'wholesome flapjack recipe'
I do like baking, as well you know. But I don't recall ever posting about the above, although I do have to say, my dear husband simply adores my flapjack. He's always playfully covering it in batter when I'm bent over the kitchen table. And he simply can't resist giving my muffin a playful lick as soon as my back is turned.

He and I will often end up in the kitchen, my husband's hands a blur as he's beating and beating his batter before icing my buns with a sigh.

But flapjack? No. No recollection at all.

'Emma Bunton and lots of donuts'
Well. It explains her latest look, doesn't it?

'Barbara Cartland collection figurines'
Fantastic! I don't know what they are, but I want one! Or even better - action figurines. Dame Cartland does battle against the evil Patricia Cornwell figure, with light-up typewriter and pink accessories! Come on, Hasbro, you're missing a trick here!

'"I've slept with so many men" college'
Ahem. I have no idea what that's doing there. Move along.

Someone else landed here asking for the Angela Lansbury official fan-club. I'm sure they were in for a shock to find out what she's up to these days. Well, it's all perfectly obvious from seeing her in the Peter Ustinov version of Death on the Nile as the drunk society woman. No smoke without fire, I say.


Finally, just a quick note to say thanks to you all for reading this nonsense. You're all wonderful, and I adore you all.

Monday, May 10, 2004

Load of Cock

WARNING: CONTAINS DELIBERATE SPOILERS

Something else I did this weekend was go and see Van Helsing. It is, by far, one of the worst pieces of nonsense committed to celluloid. And please bear in mind that I do own a copy of Spiceworld: The Movie.

Now, I'm an apathetic sort, so rather than stand in front of the Empire, Leicester Square with a placard announcing 'WORST FILM EVER' I shall merely present you with my shortened interpretation of the script so a) you can see how awful it is, and b) feel like you've seen it and happily chitter on about it to all your friends around the watercooler on Monday. Enjoy.



VAN HELSING: THE ABRIDGED SCRIPT


The UNIVERSAL LOGO turns BLACK AND WHITE to hammer home that this is a blockbuster, as only blockbusters are allowed to mess with logos.

Suddenly we are in PARIS where our hero, HUGH JACKMAN is fighting MR HYDE. There is lots of EXPENSIVE yet UNREALISTIC CGI on the screen at once.

STEPHEN SOMMERS:
Isn't this fabulous? I'm the director, writer and producer and can claim all the credit! I did ask Industrial Light and Magic how their schedule for doing the CGI was for this year. They said, 'What part?' and I said 'All of it!'. I even asked their workers to bring in their kids! Anyone who could crayon was thrown at this film!

THE AUDIENCE:
Is that all you think will sate us?

SOMMERS:
Yes! Not only that! I'm also going to wank furiously into each and every film can sent to every cinema in the world! Mmmf!

Anyway.

HUGH goes and claims his ANNOYING COMEDY SIDEKICK who, of course, hasn't slept with a woman and is good with gadgets. SIDEKICK waves a sphere under his nose.

SIDEKICK:
I'm not sure what this does! It explodes with the light of a sun!

HUGH:
Bring it anyway.

THE AUDIENCE (uneasily):
Excuse me? You don't know what it is for? You're going to fight vampires, and you have no idea of what you're going to do with a sphere that explodes with the light of a sun? Something tells us the director has underestimated our intelligence...

Enter A PAIR OF BOOTS with KATE BECKINSALE'S BOOBS attached.

KATE:
I have never seen the sea.

This now means that she is MARKED FOR DEATH and won't make it to the INEVITABLE SEQUEL.

HUGH:
You'd think like that if you'd lost your memories.

KATE:
Your memories? You have lost your memories?

HUGH:
Yes. My memories. Lost.

KATE:
Lost. You. Memories. Have.

HUGH:
Yes. I can't think of any other way of saying it.

THE AUDIENCE:
We get it already!

SOMMERS:
But don't you see! He has a Dark Past, unlike any other blockbuster hero!

THE AUDIENCE (in unison):
Batman!

SOMMERS (soothing):
Shush! Here's some more CGI!

The screen brightens into a distracting fight sequence which has no bearing on the flimsy plot. It is vaguely hypnotic.

HUGH fights VAMPIRES. HUGH fights the WOLFMAN. HUGH fights some more VAMPIRES.

WILL KEMP thrashes around in his pants once more. This is THE ONLY REASON TO SEE THIS FILM.

But lo! HUGH has been bitten by the WOLFMAN. He then explains some contrived bobbins where he has to kill the vampire by the first stroke of midnight but be given the cure by the last.

There is a big FACE OFF between HUGH and DRACULA.

DRACULA:
We've known each other for years, you know, you and I. Hundreds of years. Oh yes.

HUGH:
Oh yes?

DRACULA:
Yes. Hundreds. Although I'm not going to give you any specifics.

HUGH:
That does sound like it hasn't really been thought out by the writer, doesn't it?

DRACULA shrugs and launches at HUGH. The first chime sounds. HUGH launches at DRACULA in a whirl of distracting CGI.

Minutes go by. Then some more. More expensive things are blown up to sidetrack the audience. They aren't buying it.

THE AUDIENCE:
Stephen Sommers! It has been at least ten minutes since the first clock strike! What's going on?

SOMMERS:
Only (pant) two-hundred and thirty-eight cans (wheeze) to go! Can someone nip out and get me some Baby-Oil? I'm getting a little chapped...

More CGI fighting between two invincible creatures. These two fake-looking creatures bear no resemblance to our hero or antagonist. Which means that THE AUDIENCE is more than slightly detached by it all. All of a sudden, KATE arrives with the cure, and the SIDEKICK arrives with the stake. SOMETHING HAPPENS that means HUGH is back to normal and KATE is dead.

THE AUDIENCE:
Huh?

SOMMERS:
Look at that! What a climax! What an ending! Van Helsing is not like any other hero in cinema history!

KATE is buried by the sea. As we all expected. And the smoke from the pyre rises and forms KATE's smiling face.

THE AUDIENCE (ironically):
Well, we weren't expecting that.

SOMMERS:
Did I tell you Return of the Jedi is my favorite film? Such pathos! Well, I'm spent.

THE AUDIENCE:
So are we! A tenner to get in, and two hours of our life watching this piffle! And how exactly did those horses jump the crevasse with a carriage attached? And why was the entrance to Dracula's castle in Frankenstein's? And why did Dracula move all the equipment from Frankenstein's castle to his own at the end of the film? Oh, our heads hurt just trying to make sense of it!

SOMMERS (looking down):
So does mine, now. Still, all should be back on track for the sequel! Did I tell you Hugh's mother was going to be the Loch Ness Monster...

THE AUDIENCE SCREAMS.


(with apologies to Rod Hilton, who does these far better.)

Space Oddity

I went to Sailsbury for a few hours this weekend. The oddest thing: the children all look like they are from Croydon, but sound like they're from Oxford...

Friday, May 07, 2004

Bitchin' in the Kitchen

Gurrk. I have the most astonishing hangover; unhelpful as I have to record a DVD commentary this afternoon with eyes like piss-holes in the snow and a voice as gruff as Lynda Bellingham.

My memory of events are somewhat hazy, so I’ll make most of it up. Once long ago, as per the song lyrics, there was a Tavern. This bar where the glitterati of Doctor Who fandom gather once a month for no other reason than trying to get off with the new boy, and lean up the proverbial gatepost to discuss the latest sci-fi scandal. I’ve been going so long that I put curlers in and don my housecoat before I arrive. And yet I’m still finding out salubrious gossip about a show that’s been off the air for fifteen years. The joy of the series coming back is not that we may see some half-decent monsters and stories, but we’re going to have reams of gossip to be going on with for ages! Were you aware that there may have been some extracurricular activity between Jon Pertwee and Katy Manning in the Police Box prop during Frontier in Space? And one of the Doctors died in flagrante delicto at a convention, while still in his costume after banging a fan? And another one was referred to as being ‘hung like a baboon but didn’t know what to do with it’ by one of his companions?

Well. You’ll be pleased to know that Who fandom apes this incestuous behaviour quite seriously, and it was only after a few bottles of Old Scrote’s Weasel Piss - a wine they serve that appeared to have been drained through a navvy’s sock at the winery - could I face the cavalcade of ex-shags, old bosses, enemies and minions that gathered at the watering hole for a good queeny bitch.

I have no idea why most fans appear to be wendys. When asked why we idolise a sexless gentleman with extravagant dress sense who travels the galaxy in a closet with a woman he never has sex with, I can only shrug my shoulders.

Ah! Shoulders! That’s triggered something. There was a lovely gentleman who offered me a massage last night. And there were some shenanigans about being invited to a ‘card game’ which seemed oddly euphemistic, so I ducked that issue. As it was, I wasn’t too sure about this massage that was on the proverbial table: did we both expect, er, ‘extras’? It’s not like it hasn’t happened before: my former batman Rémy was a marvel with his expressive digits, and it was while we were discussing housekeeping matters, what I actually asked him to do was “Sack my cook”. And from that point, we didn’t see daylight for a week.

That joke is currently performing a farewell tour before being retired to Bridlington.

Wednesday, May 05, 2004

Great Mysteries

Kids, I’m seeing Dame Aggie and co. this weekend. If there are indeed any great mysteries you want us to solve, do drop me a mail to the address on the right. No, go on.

A Rant. Look Away.

While I’m not as imperious as my good friend Jayson – who would gladly bring about the return of the Empire at the drop of his stylish trilby - I do bemoan the way we seem to have let the laymen get away with it for the last fifty years.

Take my boiler, which has been without a flame within longer than Wendy Richard’s rotting carcass. With two Men Who Are Good Listeners within our home, it was a matter of urgency that we got someone out, as you must be aware our skin-care alone cannot lapse a day. So we were delivered a rather sulky youth mid-last week, who promptly took it apart, whistled, and said the immortal “Sorry, mate. I haven’t got the parts”.

To which, he left the boiler half assembled, like a dog pissing on his territory.

He was due to return yesterday. Did he? Did be bogroll. And this is the rub: we expect them not to turn up. We expect them to do a bad job. When did this become acceptable? By rights, he owes your glorious leader one day’s pay, but that would never wash in a court of law.

He is apparently turning up tonight, and alas I am out, else there would be some very sarcastic comments about his parents, his abilities to keep time, and his attitude. I dislike being held to ransom by someone with a YTS.

There. Rant over.

Tuesday, May 04, 2004

Fascinating Facts! Condoms

Things We Found Out Using The Web In Under An Hour

It was the Egyptians who first started using contraception, showing this wise race were in search for something stopping the creation of Avril ‘Cute as a Button’ Levine for thousands and thousands of years. Although they didn’t get the idea for a condom for a while, they experimented by using milk and honey, and crocodile dung. And you think that ladies’ minkies are smelly these days.

Around 1000 years Before Cher, the Egyptians started using linen tied with ribbon to catch their love-custard. There are pictures and everything, but as it’s over a thousand years old, it’s not counted as porn. A little like those pictures of Katy Manning and the Dalek.

Those pesky Romans were said to have used condoms made out of the muscle tissue of their enemies, and the oldest European condoms were found at the site of the battles between Oliver Cromwell and soldiers loyal to King Charles I in the foundations of Dudley Castle near Birmingham. It was a close-run thing as there are some down the back of a mattress in Pleasuredrome that clearly belonged to Edward II by the look of them.

The 18th century, the famous womanizer, Casanova, wore condoms made of linen. Unusual condom materials have included oiled silk paper, fish bladders, and tortoiseshell. Oh, eww and ouch respectively.

In Europe, 770,000 condoms are manufactured each day. Even Gertie couldn’t get though that in a weekend, but lord knows he tries.

In the 1700s, condoms made of animal intestines became available. However, they were very expensive and were often reused - eww again. It wasn’t until 1844 that the rubber jonny actually became rubber - when good old Doctor Goodyear and co got in on the act and created a spoff-bag made of vulcanised rubber. After use, they were washed, slathered in petroleum jelly and kept in a little box by the side of the bed. Since 1930, they have been made lovingly out of latex.

The largest condom in the world was 72 foot long, and created to fit over the obelisk in Place de la Concorde, Paris for World AIDS Day on December 1, 1993. Mrs Overall would still call it a ‘comdon’...

American service men were the only soldiers in the First World War to be denied the use of condoms. As a result, 70% of them caught an STD of some form. In the Navy it was no different, with the Secretary of the Navy believing that condom use was immoral and “un Christian.” It was a young Assistant Secretary of the Navy, Franklin Roosevelt, who ordered the distribution of condoms to sailors when his boss was away from the office one day. Hurrah!

The term ‘posh wank’ refers to the act of masturbation in a condom. The other definition is lying on your arm until it goes to sleep and then doing your business so it feels like someone else is doing it. A third definition is to do the horizontal handshake with a long glove on. Or you could do what I do - have quiché.