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» Running away

Breakout
We had a thing at our school called Breakout. This was a yearly which was thoroughly encouraged by parents and staff alike and involved small groups (4-5 people) of students seeing how far away they could get from the school in 24 hours without spending any money i.e. hitch-hiking, begging etc. One year, the three finalists were as follows; in third place a group of kids got to Bath, in second 3 of the people in my year got to Bologne (North France, can't be bothered to check my spelling) but the winners, 4 girls from the upper sixth somehow managed to get to St Petersburg (yes, in Russia). Not a bad effort. They managed to sweet talk their way as part of a courier ticket, i think. Can't imagine anything like this ever being allowed nowadays. I refer the right honorable readers to the current nanny state image challenge.
(Sun 13th Aug 2006, 14:07, More)

» Bad Management

Trouble in t' pub
Bit unfair to call this bad management but essentially part of the job of a (ugh) pub manager is to be able to sort out trouble. The pub i was working in was a good 40 mins from London so it attracted good, friendly travelling antipodeans to work and live upstairs. One of these, a girl whose name i forget (Anne, maybe?) had a boyfriend who we'd never met. Anne was a small, doe-eyed Kiwi and no-one expected her to be dating what looked like Va'iga Tuigamala (off of the All Blacks). And no-one expected him to have a sissy name like Gene. So Gene came to visit the pub and offered to pick up glasses for the evening on Friday as there wasn't much else for him to do. When it came to kicking out time, a sturdy contigent of toughies and 'real' travellers (wink, wink) were causing trouble to Adam. I know this as i was busy tidying up around them and not nearly tough enough to even think about helping. Adam continued to tell them to get out, but they just jeered him and continued to provoke trouble. They could easily do this. At this point, a large dark shadow joined proceedings and the lads turned round and almost suffered a "Donk!" moment as Gene leaned in to their faces and said, ever so politely, "righto ladies, time to finish your wine and fuck off", fully in the knowledge and he could have crushed them in the palm of his hand easily. It was too beautiful for words to see these boys look at each other, look back to Gene (who was grinning from ear to ear), weigh up their increasingly dwindling options, quickly drain their glasses and "fuck off" as Gene had suggested. Pisspoor management but great bouncing. Whatever happened to Gene, i wonder...
(Thu 10th Jun 2010, 23:01, More)

» Performance

Charity Stars in Their Eyes.
To start with, I hate TV programmes like this let alone peforming on stage. I get utterly petrified (despite having been in two bands as well and being able to play a better than average guitar/piano). So I've no idea how I was talked into entering a charity Stars in Their Eyes competition at work a few years back. My friend suggested that we do a duet - he used to be a red coat and is comfortable doing the whole entertaining thing so i thought this would be OK. We decided to try the Proclaimers "500 miles" as it had just been the comic relief record, would suit two guys with mediocre voices and would hopefully distract the crowd from our poorly hidden embarrassment. Also, there was a prize on offer - flights to the Maldives. The travel company I worked for ran a charter flight there so seats weren't expensive to give away. A few days after entering, my friend was sent miles away on a secondment with work. He didn't return for some weeks by which time the event was only a few days away. We decided to bail. So i went to the organiser, one of the office managers and gave him the bad news. He looked like he was about to cry and told me that other people had pulled out and asked if would i reconsider. That stumped me and in a moment of weakness, i said OK, i'd think of something. In the meantime, my redcoat friend had been sent back off on his secondment leaving me to ponder my fate alone. I had to decide what to sing and presented myself with the following criteria - it's got to be mercifully short, something reasonably lively and something that i know all the words to. And so, a week or so later I was stood behind a stage curtain, surrounded by billowing dry ice, absolutely shitting myself and about to be unleashed on a crowd of about 500 strangers and colleagues dressed in a spangly Elvis jumpsuit, '50s' wig and sunglass to sing the King's lesser known, but awesome song, Guitar Man. My prayers were answered and I didn't screw up, and people were even kind enough to give me a good cheer. I didn't win though. That went to some professional-style cunt of a singer who brought lots of her mates to watch her sing that song off of The Bodyguard. She even blacked herself up for it. What a racist. A lot of people spoke to me after the show to say well done (which was nice) but most people just said they'd never heard of my song before. Arseholes.
(Fri 19th Aug 2011, 11:00, More)

» Celebrities part II

Cheggers
This story is a bit of a hand-me-down but it's wonderful. A friend of a friend was working as a proctologist somewhere (i'm so definite with my locations, characters but it gets better). Anyway, this guy was called to a cubicle where a man was waiting for a rectal examination of some sort. When he pulled the curtain open, the scene revealed was none other than that of Keith Chegwin in his hospital pyjamas. Cheggers (remember he was about to have a stranger rifling thorugh the contents of his shit box) turned with glee to welcome my friend to his cubicle, raised both of his thumbs and said "Wahey!".
I'm not sure that he did this when my friend was wrist-deep in his hoop though.
(Fri 9th Oct 2009, 16:13, More)

» Heckles II

I was going to post this as a comment to the story below about Bill Hicks but felt it warrented its own airing.
I took my Dad to see Ken Dodd a few years ago. Doddy's age is showing a little more these days but he's still a great comedian from an age that we won't see again. Show usually go on for 5 hours...

Anyway, I got front row seats in the hope that Doddy would pick on my old man. Sadly, there was a bloke next to me who Doddy had discovered was from Wigan, so he spent most of his time making fun out of him.

When he asked the guy what he did for a living, the audience member (without breaking stride) said "I'm a tax accountant".

Doddy, with his well-documented history of tax problems, tottered visibly and said "By Jove! You're not are you?"

The bloke just said "no" and laughed.

Doddy muttered something like "ooo, you little rotter" or something equally lovely and gave a big goofy grin. Shook hands with the bloke at the end too. Good old Ken.
(Fri 13th Jun 2014, 11:00, More)
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