Sunday 28 December 2014

2014 has been a great year for holding a digestive biscuit between your teeth.

2014 Highlights:

Holding a digestive biscuit between your teeth while you watch a flock of geese

Laying some new, yellow concrete flags directly over the old cracked ones

Having a bit of cake on your face

Selling the stone flags from your yard and replacing them with dog shit

Poking a yolky knife at a picture of a semi-naked man

Amplexus on the steps of the house that once featured on TV’s Grand Designs programme

Emptying your catheter bag into the storm drain by the bedroom furniture shop

Adjusting your vest top and putting out your cigarette (as a mark of respect)

Asserting that steam railways make life worth living

Watching two ducks eat some chips

Being a goth, then normal, then a muslim

Spraying an old push-bike yellow in the rain

Mending a Transit Connect

Sleeping in a shopping basket attached to a walking frame


Referring to your Mercedes using the pronouns She and Her
Returning to the crew cut and rat tail in your 60s

Asking Robert: Have you any food on?

Calling Robert a robbing bastard

Gobbing out of the window of a Fiat 500

Having your tits grabbed by Kyle

Recommending a cut of pork loin

Selling a pebble for a pound

Being inside a Range Rover

Swallowing a mouse in just three gulps

Being important enough in Fair-Isle and corduroy

Watching the jackdaws while you piss against a tree

Nightclothes in the daytime

Polishing your alloys and smoking weed

Soiled nappies and an enraged goose

Jokes and cigarettes outside the strip club

Wearing your hard hat over your hood

Talking to the lonely pig on the moor

Bemoaning all this rigmarole

Monday 22 December 2014

The sun is low, boiler flues are pluming, the garden gate is slimy, and the old man with the eye-patch...

The sun is low, boiler flues are pluming, the garden gate is slimy, and the old man with the eye-patch, bandana, boot-cut jeans and biker jacket is bemoaning “All this bloody rigmarole for £1.63 in bloody pension credits” to his neighbour, the tall thin man in the plastic reindeer antlers with the dew-drop hanging from his nose.

All of a sudden hailstones are bouncing off the ‘Santa, Please Stop Here’ sign which is planted in the pot next to the fake plastic topiary bay tree.

A woman with an anorak and a bag-for-life is talking to a group of other women with bags-for-life. “I don’t feel the cold anymore because I’ve got...” she stops to think for a moment, then turns to the woman in the enormous scarf next to her, “What is it I’ve got, Joyce?” “Diabetes,” says Joyce. “No!” says the woman, suddenly remembering, “A onesie.”

Sunday 7 December 2014

The Lonely Pig on the Moor

Every day this week, I’ve seen the lonely pig on the moor. It runs to the perimeter of its pen and stares at me as I walk past. Yesterday morning, when it came to meet me, I made two pig-like grunts (I don’t know why, I wasn’t really thinking about it) and it responded in the same manner.

Further up the moor, Mr Briggs pulls up. He winds down the window of his Suzuki Carry and tells me that he and his missus have been by coach to Eastbourne for a ‘Turkey and Tinsel Weekender’. “Aye,” he explains, “Tuesday was Christmas Eve, Wednesday was Christmas Day, and Thursday was New Year’s Day. £125-a-head all-in, including four drinks, which is enough. We had a real time!” Mr Briggs goes on to tell me that by the Thursday (New Year’s Day) he’d found he fancied a fish. He says he travelled to a chip shop in Brighton only to find that they cost £10.50 so he hadn’t bothered in the end.

Back in town, the gas board are digging up the roads. The woman in the pink onesie who is sitting on her front step surrounded by small statues of Yorkshire terriers while she smokes a cigarette, tells me, “It’s a right pain, there’s nowhere to bloody park.”

A gold Kia Picanto screeches to a halt outside the church and a man in his seventies with a beard and glasses gets out brandishing a small hand plane. He slams shut the car door, shoulders open the gate of the churchyard and sprints down the path and through the open doors. Within seconds I can hear the sound of wood being energetically smoothed echoing out from the church interior.

At 2.30pm, at the top of the hill, I encounter two large women in their seventies. They are dressed in identical spotted Dalmatian onesies and appear to be very drunk. They cling to one another as they zig-zag across the middle of the road whilst inexplicably making load “miaow” noises like enormous bipedal dog-cats. In the supermarket, the woman with the sensible shoes and bag-for-life is telling her husband about her dislike of Milk Tray chocolates. “Don’t ever buy me Milk Tray again! I hate them! Joan bought me some last year and I’ve still got them. Yuk!”

PS: The film at the head of this post was shot from approximately the same place that Edwardian filmmakers Mitchell and Kenyon made their short film in Huddersfield 114 years ago. Link to BFI Player here: