Last Post … of 2015

Well, this year has been a bundle of laughs … not, as the kids would say. Continuing this downbeat theme, I’ve not posted for 9 whole days so thought I’d better not leave it any longer. The festive season has left me (and you, perhaps) feeling somewhat jaded and certainly not up to anything original, so here are ten Christmas cracker type jokes for you not to laugh at. And to help you keep a straight face, I’ve included several pictures of people not having a good time.

A woman gets on a bus with her baby. The bus driver says: ”Ugh, that’s the ugliest baby I’ve ever seen!” The woman walks to the rear of the bus and sits down, fuming. She says to a man next to her: ”The driver just insulted me!” The man says: ”You go up there and tell him off. Go on, I’ll hold your monkey for you.”

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“I can still enjoy sex at 74 – I live at 75, so it’s  no distance.”

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I want to die like my father, peacefully in his sleep, not screaming and terrified like his passengers.

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One day a waiter fell sick and was rushed to hospital. He was lying on the table in great pain. When a doctor passed by the waiter said: “Hey doctor, could you do something for my pain?” The doctor said: “I’m sorry this isn’t my table.”

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I said to the Gym instructor “Can you teach me to do the splits?” He said, ”How flexible are you?” I said, ”I can’t make Tuesdays.”

Nigel Farage

A group of chess enthusiasts checked into a hotel and were standing in the lobby discussing their recent tournament victories. After about an hour, the manager came out of the office and asked them to disperse. ”But why?” they asked, as they moved off. ”Because,” he said ”I can’t stand chess nuts boasting in an open foyer.”

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I went to my doctor and asked for something for persistent wind. He gave me a kite.

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I was in my local pub the other night. I said to the landlord: “This beer is flat, warm and full of sediment”. He said: “You’re lucky – you’ve only got a pint. I’ve got a bloody cellar full.”

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I backed a horse yesterday at ten to one.  It came in at quarter past four.

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The people next door are awful. At three o’clock this morning they were banging on the walls and screaming. Good job I wasn’t trying to sleep — I was playing my drums at the time.

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OK, I cheated on the last picture … couldn’t leave you with another miserable mush when you’re supposed to be feeling festive, could I? And while I’m on an upbeat note – geddit? – here’s wishing you all the best in 2016 … Happy New Year!

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There’s A Whole Generation …

When we first heard this kind of music, we little thought that we’d still be listening to it half a century later.

50 years ago, old people in Britain sang sentimental music-hall songs like ‘Nellie Dean’ and cherished wartime performers like Vera Lynn and Gracie Fields. Old men wore their de-mob suits on the beach and old ladies ate bread and dripping and wore whalebone corsets. This was the world of charabanc outings that the Beatles satirised in their underrated film Magical Mystery Tour. They – along with most of their musical contemporaries – believed that pop culture was ephemeral, something you did before you got a proper job. And when you retired with your gold watch, you’d be sipping warm Mackeson in a smoke-filled pub singing along to ‘We’ll Meet Again

But something had shifted. A fault line opened up. Pete Townsend and Roger Daltrey still perform ‘My Generation’ with its now ironic line Hope I die before I get old. The Stones continue to defy gravity and strut their stuff to thousands of new young fans. Even the warring Davies brothers have buried the hatchet in a Kinks reunion. And tomorrow night I’m off to see the Pretty Things perform their still exciting 60s-style blend of rhythm’n’blues and psych-rock, with a new album described by Mojo magazine as ‘almost unfeasibly vital’.

As the great Bill Hicks used to say, ‘Who woulda thunk it?’

 

Seasonal Stop Press!

              Shoppers queue as fizzy-drink truck rolls into shop car-park

Families from across town queued up in their hundreds to sneak a glimpse at the famous bright red truck as it made its way into Bafflesby.

The iconic lorry rolled up at Pennywise in Markdown Lane yesterday to greet queuing shoppers ready to have their photograph taken and grab a giveaway bottle of the fizzy drink.

April Fuddle and her daughter Freebie were among the throngs of people queuing for their time in front of the camera.

The 46-year-old, of Witsend, said it was fun to come down with her family and get into the festive mood.

She said: “We’ve never seen the truck before so we thought we’d come down as it’s in Bafflesby. As soon as you see the advert you feel really festive. We’ve been singing the tune non-stop.”

Queues were already building before the truck’s arrival time of midday, with residents from across Bafflesby travelling specifically to see the brand’s television advert star.

The brand’s TV advert has become synonymous with Christmas and the iconic tune Party Time Is Here Again blared out across the car park all afternoon.

Tick Boxer was also waiting with his family to have their photograph taken with the bright red lorry.

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The 60-year-old, of Barmcote, said: “We’ve come down just to look at the lorry. It’s my first time coming to see it but it’s famous so we just had to come.

“I’ve seen the advert already so many times on the television. It’s a nice festive event on the run-up to Christmas.”

The red lorry first graced television screens in 1995 and has since travelled across the UK to spread festive cheer in various locations. It was last in Bafflesby in 2012 at Lowprice, Greater Dumdale.

Fellow fizzy drink fan Sippy Thicket, 21, of Potherfield, added: “It’s the first time I’ve seen it in Bafflesby so we wanted to come down.

“I’m really excited. I absolutely love it. I’ve come along with all my family and we’re looking forward to having our photo taken.”

This news item appeared in my local newspaper. I have changed nothing but the names. I never look a gift horse in the mouth and this was obviously a message from the gods of satire. You may look forward to further bulletins from Bafflesby …

 

 

Sleep Disturbance

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Last night I dreamed a wonderful new word.
This morning I awoke and wrote it down.
I knew it had a power which, once heard,
Could bring an end to fighting in the town.
I sold my gun to buy a megaphone
And spread the word across the battlefield.
To my delight I saw their weapons thrown
Upon the ground. By evening peace was sealed.
They said I was a hero, set me high,
And drank my health a hundred thousand times.
But soon enough the drink made tempers fly –
I wake before old feuds beget new crimes.
I cannot sleep, hearing the town scream.
Waking up this morning was a dream.

Dave Kingsbury

 

 

My Prayer

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I reckon being separated from people in life helps to prepare us for their absence in death. And when they die, their lives take on a new shape and significance. Where a life has been full and complete, we can only celebrate it.  We express its value in the currency of contribution, influence, relationship. Where there has been pain and suffering, we view death as a release. Quality of life is valued over mere existence.

And wherever death is unexpected or premature, we value the human potential that has been lost. So often the prematurely bereaved become campaigners and even reformers, honouring the memory of their loved ones by seeking to save others from the same misfortune. Their lives … and deaths, we hear time and again, will not have been in vain.

Avoidable death is a constant spur to human progress. It challenges politics, economics, ethics – to my sceptical ear, diminutives with a sonic similarity to ‘antics’ and ‘frolics’ – by reminding us that within each word there beats a moral heart … respectively liberty, equality, fraternity. And no other human right outguns the right to life.

But whatever the circumstances, death can be the moment that life burns brightest. With our last breath we pass into the collective consciousness, an apotheosis far superior to any egoistic notion of individual transcendence. This is poignantly described in the second verse of Wilfred Owen’s  Anthem For Doomed Youth (quoted below) where the dead can be said to pass into folk memory. Funeral elegies and fond memories held in common can bring us back to life where we really belong, in the hearts and minds of others.

What greater incentive could we have to slip the reins of ego and gallop free of death’s burdensome saddle? What greater reward for a good life could we hope for than to be recalled with a grateful smile? What else could have driven great artists through the present pain of creation but the knowledge that they might live on in their masterpieces?

And my prayer?

Let not humankind curse me for a destroyer but praise me for a creator.

 

“I am human, and nothing of that which is human is alien to me.”   –  Terence

 

‘Days’

What are days for? Days are where we live. They come, they wake us time and time over. They are to be happy in: where can we live but days?

Ah, solving that question brings the priest and the doctor in their long coats running over the fields.

Philip Larkin

 

What candles may be held to speed them all?
      Not in the hands of boys, but in their eyes
Shall shine the holy glimmers of goodbyes.
      The pallor of girls’ brows shall be their pall;
Their flowers the tenderness of patient minds,
And each slow dusk a drawing-down of blinds.
Wilfred Owen

 

Like … duh!

A question from an aged technophobe to his followers … where my blog title appears on your ‘Manage Followed Sites’ list, can you turn on/off the ‘Emails for New Posts/Comments’ functions? If not, I’d be very grateful if someone could tell me how to enable this. Cheers!

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Rolling News … Update … Silly Season Shocker … Problem Solved … Turns Out, There Was No Problem … Silly Old Fool Wipes Egg From Face … For Next Major Scoop, Watch This Empty Space!

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Tribes Without Passports, People without States

Click on the link below for a stimulating post from a sharp and thought-provoking WordPress blog. I love any attempt to come up with new thinking and this endeavours to break up the consensual log-jam. Its idealism reminds me of my first ever post, which I present below as a naïve introduction.

My voyage of exploration begins. I want to recapture the spirit of childhood, when we would set out from home with the deliberate aim of getting hopelessly lost. No point in going over old ground, after all.

Source: Tribes Without Passports, People without States