Sunday, October 24, 2010


cause panic in New York, or so says Friday's Guardian Newspaper. Rather than another acid tale of Wall Street high life this creepy story focuses instead on New York low life, to wit, bed bugs. So confident have our little friends become, it is reported, they're parading openly and some might say brazenly in department stores and upmarket residences. To curtail ensuing panic the mayor has demanded their extinction.  A mayoral spokesperson said, "We demand their extinction." Speaking on condition of anonymity a spokesbug declared, "The hysteria may be entirely justified given our nature but hey man what all this stuff about extinction? Jeeze, even Hedge Funds get a better press."

Later, whilst mopping brow the spokesbug was overheard telling a friend.

"Damn, wish I'd not linked us to Hedge Funds."

Thursday, October 14, 2010


copy of The Independent  reported on a study done at the University of Kentucky demonstrating  that pigeons are inveterate gamblers. The four birds involved: Eddy 'The Pigeon' Pigeon; Johnny 'Are You Looking at Me?' Pigeon;  Leon 'Stumpy Pigeon' Pigeon (so named because he has no feet) and his cousin Dermot 'These are not my wings' McGuire Pigeon are well known amongst the Columbidae as fleecers of the unsuspecting. Gerald 'I've a Migraine' Pigeon, spokesbird for the Kentucky Chapter of "Nod and Poo, Nod and Poo" told a local reporter, "Recently we've been trying hard to clean up our act, staying off window ledges, eating stodgy food, that sort of thing so it's disappointing when studies such as this appear. It sets us back. I'm afraid those four wily birds have done us no favours whatsoever. Sorry, but you'll have to excuse me, I'm desperate for the bathroom... yes right now... fortunately there's a car... it's your car... bollocks..."

You learn something new everyday.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

I've returned from...

two weeks in Tokyo and Beijing.  Both cities I thought astonishing. Tokyo is awash with sky scrapers whereas Beijing is simply huge, a great city bounded by westerly mountains and endless plains to the east and south. I was in awe of the two capitals  and though each were welcoming, the Chinese being the most open and friendly, I felt dwarfed by Tokyo heights and the grand open spaces that characterised central Beijing. Coming from a small Island crammed with 60 million people there's little sense of big space in the British psyche. Maybe it's experienced in sparsely populated Scotland, upper northern England or the flat-lands of Norfolk but as a citizen of comfortable old Manchester I found big space a tad intimidating. Nicely intimidating because Tokyo and Beijing, so different in culture, history, layout and architecture are cities first and foremost and being a city boy I fitted in very well. Tokyo was the more modern with a centre so clean one could eat dinner off it whereas Beijing was more fun, more frayed and less exact. Tokyo felt like a bright new ipod packed to the gunnals with sharp technology whilst Beijing was the clever old uncle slightly scuffed but smart as a whip. I fell in love with both towns, dear reader, I really did. Sigh.