Monthly Archives: April 2010


The whole One A Day thing has hit a bit of a lull for me recently, with most of my entries being even more phoned-in that normal. I can try – and probably succeed – to justify this distinct lack of quality (drunk, hungover, freelancing, girlfriend GETTING IN THE WAY etc.) but that would be taking the easy way out. I think it’s clear that I’m just flagging.

After writing entries that average about 300 words per pop (figure pulled from the top of my head, but likely to be true) it’s bound to happen. I’m running out of topics, I’m running out of new things to say and – dare I say it, especially in the wake of all my eulogising about the whole One A Day thing – I’m running out of motivation. I’m still absolutely compelled to do an entry per day, I’m committed to the experiment and I do fully intend to keep on going for the whole 253 more entries I am due to make. But there’s no denying I’m floundering. Stumbling over my own feet and unable to walk in a straight line. I’ve become the drunken vagrant of the One A Day collective.

But, just as the pissed up bum can – in theory, at least – become a functioning member of society again, I will endeavour to put myself on the road to recovery. If it involves regular series of posts, if it involves more writing about games, if it involves more insane rants about fruit – I will double my efforts and pull out something that I actually find reasonably interesting to re-read should I feel the need to do so. This is instead of how I’ve felt about my recent entries, which are tripe of the highest order.

I might even resort to some more lists. As long as they’re well-written, they still count. GALVANISED.

My computer is being a prick and not letting me put images on anything. It fucks up sometimes. I’ll leave one off this one. Just Google image search ‘oneaday’ and imagine my face cut and pasted onto the third image that pops up.


Filed under Prattle

Politics went boring again

So who are you going to vote for then? I’m writing this with about half an hour of the final political debate, after having watched all of them and almost paid attention in-between Tweeting comedy gold. So it’s safe to say I’m the most politically-educated person alive today. Fact. What have we learned from these debates? Well, that the initial novelty does soon wear off. It was surprising and interesting to see these three leaders stand up, live on telly and talk about the issues that apparently matter. Initially, at least.

The second time around it became a bit old, with the three same blokes expressing the three same viewpoints on pretty similar points again. Third time around, it’s just out and out boring. We need more swearing, we need genuine anger, tears, fists flying and cries of “BIGOT!” whenever possible.

We don’t need Cameron saying “change” in under five seconds of his opening speech (as timed by John Prescott on Twitter), we don’t need Gordon Brown’s ‘switched off robot’ face every time he takes a breath, and we don’t need Clegg playing the “I’m so different to these two” card. Though, admittedly, most of all we need less David Cameron on TV. Forever. Horrible-faced man, very much needs a jab in the balls. If he has any.

Anyway, I’ve given up on it and moved to the football. Politics went from interesting to quite hopeful and back to dull samey shite over the space of three weeks. Oh well. It has actually affected my vote.

Leave a comment

Filed under Prattle

Food, eating and all that shit.

I have established earlier that I am incapable of looking after myself, feeding my stupid face noodles, pasta and other such simple, un-nourishing nonsense. I like it that way. That way is fun, tasty, sexy and easy. I don’t have to try to pretend to look after myself. But did I mention I have a girlfriend? She’s here now. She comes down south fairly often, and every time she does, my incredible plans go right out of the window.

For you see, this insane girl feels she has to feed me what would be classified as “real” food. She gets what I have read are called “ingredients”, mixes them “together” and makes “food” for “me” to eat. It’s not cool – it’s insane. Tonight I’m having roast chicken with bean stew. What’s going on?

I’m comfortable in what I eat. Noodles: they may have all the nutritional value of a pregnant pause, but they are salty and delicious. Pasta? I can make a vat of it to last a week and it costs me a couple of quid. There’s none of this ‘salt’ or ‘spices’ or other such nonsense. It’s simple, just like my brain, and it makes it easier for me to carry on living.

Having said that, this does smell amazing and I do really prefer this actual food to the nonsense I shove down my own gullet. Well done, woman.

Leave a comment

Filed under Prattle

I go to a poncey supermarket

It’s happened. I officially shop at Waitrose. Sometimes. What I once derided as the habitat of middle-aged, middle class women has become my second choice supermarket when I need to pick up my beans or soup (with beans in it). That is second behind Lidl, of course – I could never really completely dump Lidl. It has cheap things, and cheap things are good. Still, Waitrose is the alternative that I’ve picked for when I’m bored of questionable meat, or vegetables that look a ‘bit wrong’. Also it’s right across the road from Lidl, which means it’s always an option as I do so hate having to move more than absolutely necessary.

Oh wait, no – I mean: “I shop at Waitrose because I care about quality products at competitive prices, have a boner for Heston and Delia and love the fact that they only use farmers who ‘share their values’”.

Why is a supermarket a statement of your class, of your quality of life or of the type of person you are? Why are all the women in Waitrose (who look like clones) frightened of walking across the road for far cheaper items of equal quality? Why do I have to be confronted with Heston Bloominhell (HAHA SATIRE) and his stupid penis-like head every time I go into that place? So many questions, so little in the way of answers. It’s a supermarket where they sell you things in order to make a profit. It’s not a statement on your quality of life, your health, wealth or wise… th. It’s just a supermarket. Just like Lidl. They both sell beans. It’s like people getting nostalgic about Woolworths: stupid and annoying.

Still – got some cheap Waitrose banoffee pie today. Can’t argue with those odds.

Leave a comment

Filed under Prattle

For all of my adoring fans

The internet is a “wonderful” place, allegedly. It has actually helped me a great deal, and is a fine place for anyone and everyone to do things and show them to the world. Part of these ‘things’ I have done has been writing for numerous websites, as you probably know or have guessed. I’ll save it for another day to write about the places I have written for, as today I would like to talk about another thing that makes the internet unique and “wonderful”. The ability for just about anyone to make instant, mostly-uncensored comment on everything I have ever written. It’s bloody brilliant.

I have been accused of plagiarism for having a similar opinion to another games writer person, I have been insulted, patronised and generally besmirched in many ways*. I can’t say “I wouldn’t have it any other way”, but I can say I don’t mind it that much – especially as they can be so bloody funny. So let’s just take a look at some of the real, genuine, actual comments that people have made on things I have written (all from Hecklerspray, natch, as I can’t be bothered sifting through the other things):

“This is ridiculous. How dare you make such harsh and unforgiving comments about the interview when katie price was obviously devastated about losing a child.”

“listen im a 10 year old but ive got some gob on me okay and im smart enough to figure you idiots out!”

“if “hecklerspray” believes that retarded
Austrailian tabloid then they are a bunch of

“Obviously the asshole who wrote this article knows zilch about acting…
Robert Pattinson is a great actor and I’d like to see you try to portray a tortured artist or a man trying to find his identity from a young age in How To Be….

Obviously he is a fantastic actor seeing as he’s getting really good movie roles, your opinion on this article is biased and a load of bull…”


Bet ur lovin the conflict uv caused ian lol
Personally i think u can hav ur own opinion & no1 shud rly care

I just think ur a bit pathetic”

And of course, all of these I quoted all those ages ago (they’re funnier than these, I didn’t want to re-use them here).

I do so love the internet.

*Some have even been supportive.

Leave a comment

Filed under Prattle

Ants in my pants (“room”)

My flat is currently under attack. Well, more like under siege, except without Seagal. And I can be beaten in the kitchen. No, this is a siegettack from the industrious little bastards of the insect world: ants. They’re not overrunning the place but it is slightly annoying, especially as I haven’t layered the floor with a combination of honey and sugar (read: it’s not covered in ant food here). But still they come.

I have decided to fight back though. This aggression will not stand, man. I have been looking into ways in which I can combat these little bastards in order to stop them being on my table every now and then. Gits. The training has so far encapsulated watching both Alien and Aliens – we all know the xenomorph is similar to an ant in many ways, so it’s a fine way to figure out how to combat them. I am currently building a flamethrower, and the motion tracker just has a few faults to iron out (namely: it doesn’t track motion). I have so far discovered that I can shout “LET’S ROOOOCK!” at the ants and they… react. A bit.

The second element of training has been in video game form, and has been to play Earth Defence Force 2017. This game sees you running around the world, destroying the threat posed by giant ants of doom. I have learned you should buy an assault rifle, as well as hide in the sea for a bit. The sea is quite close in Bournemouth, so this could work nicely. See the attached:

I think, in the long run, the ants are going to win. Must step up the training efforts.

Leave a comment

Filed under Prattle

Aspire to this

It’s something I hear people say a fair bit, and it’s something that’s popped up a couple of times in the last month or so from a few different sources: people comparing themselves and their achievements to celebrities, sportspeople, inventors or whatever else. I’d like to throw my bonce-warmer into the squared circle on this matter. Basically to say: shut up, and get a grip. So you’re whatever age you are and you haven’t done what Thomas Edison had done, you haven’t ran as fast as that Fast Man had by the time he was 24 nor had you been in as many newspapers as Smacky McDrunk had by the time s/he was 15. First: is that a fair comparison? No. Second: who actually cares? No one of genuine worth.

Talking less about celebrity types, or people who generally don’t matter, the reason names of inventors, great thinkers, authors or whatever pop up is because they’ve accomplished something exceptional. They are, in essence, the exception that proves the rule – the rule being that 99 per cent of people are normal, lead normal lives and generally just get on with it. You might make a difference some day; you might write the greatest story ever told or avert a world catastrophe using a rubber band attached to a squirrel. But does it matter if you don’t? No. You make differences in different, admittedly smaller, ways.

Celebrities? Sports people? Celebrated because they’re born into already-famous stock, they get their mimsies out in public, they have lots of money or because they can jump higher than you. If the fact you aren’t on a par with these people gets you down, there is probably something wrong with you. I would like to have their money if only for comfort’s sake, but the rest of it I can take or leave. It’s not something to get anything approaching worked up about, or even to care about in the slightest.

I’m not saying don’t try, though normally I do. I’m just saying get on with yourself and stop worrying about what some dead bastard, idiotic whore or school drop-out who could run fast and kick a ball have done. It’s a comparison you’re always gambling against and it’s another obnoxious offshoot of our bullshit culture’s obsession with being the best at everything. Embrace your mediocrity; something special might come from it. And if it doesn’t, does it really matter? No, because you don’t matter. BAM.

Leave a comment

Filed under Prattle

A Wilhelm Scream(s)

I have a great deal of love in my heart every time I hear a wilhelm scream. I also have a great deal of joy in my soul every time I hear A Wilhelm Scream. Oh ho – how confusing that could prove! But it’s not; they’re actually two genuinely great things in the world, and somehow, some way, have the same name. Some say it’s because the latter was named after the former, but that’s the kind of wild speculation I’ll leave to the professionals. I prefer the mystery anyway.

What is the Wilhelm scream (sans ‘A’)? Well, Wikipedia is your friend:

The Wilhelm scream is a frequently-used film and television stock sound effect first used in 1951 for the film Distant Drums. The effect gained new popularity (its use often becoming an in-joke) after it was used in Star Wars and many other blockbuster films as well as television programs and video games. The scream is often used when someone is either pierced with an arrow, or falling to their death from a great height or because of an explosion.

The Wilhelm scream has become a well-known cinematic sound cliché, and is claimed to have been used in over 149 films.

You know that scream you hear in seemingly everything? You’ll know it when you hear it. That’s the Wilhelm scream. I associate it mainly with Stormtroopers, but it pops up all over the place and is generally a welcome addition.

But what about A Wilhelm Scream?

A Wilhelm Scream are a band. They do melodic hardcore, a sub-genre in the punk rock… genre. This may mean nothing to you, so here are some more clues as to what they are like: they have songs called ‘The Kids Can Eat A Bag Of Dicks’, ‘Me vs Morrissey In The Pretentiousness Contest (The Ladder Match)’ and ‘I Wipe My Ass With Showbiz’; they have lyrics like “This grin is shit-eating and fleeting like a catamaran”; they exude a genuine air of Not Giving A Fuck about fame – a rarity, no doubt; someone hacked one of their songs into Guitar Hero and it ended up like this, which would make my hands melt or explode.

Or I could just post a video, but that would ruin the guessing game. Oh, here you go – I’m too kind:

I realise it’s not cool to like a band like this – I’m supposed to be into Sigur Ros or talk non-stop about Mono or Mum by the time I’m this old (it’s definitely not just to posture and look cool, oh no – everyone ‘intelligent’ clearly only loves bands like those) and ignore stuff that just makes me feel “RARGH YEAH” etc. But I don’t. I like A Wilhelm Scream. Every time I listen to them, life feels a bit better.


Filed under Prattle

Promotion (and relegation)

Football Manager (nee Championship Manager pre-split) has been a staple diet of my gaming life since a young age. I graduated from watching my brother play Champ Man ’92 on the Amiga to actually playing it myself – shocking, I know. Soon enough I was the maestro of the 1-4-5 formation, winning games 12-0 and signing as many regenerated players as I possibly could. As well as Des Walker.

But it wasn’t until Champ Man 2 that I realised this game was training me for bigger, better things. It helped me learn basic budgeting, which countries were in the EU and probably some other things I can’t think of. It also helped me to see that winning was fun, and losing to an arbitrary set of numbers and words on a screen could be more infuriating than you could ever imagine.

Champ Man 3 taught me that a game could be ruined by making it far too hard, but the ‘01/’02 update showed me that this could be remedied and indeed turned into one of the best games of the series. It could also introduce the world to Radoslaw Kaluzny.

Champ Man 4 taught me that I needed a new PC, and I actually missed the entire run of the CM4 series.

Then it became Football Manager, and the world became a far better place. Why? I don’t really know. It just did. This whole series has likely eaten up thousands of hours of my time – maybe tens of thousands. It’s made me break one laptop (and many other minor things) and generally be a ridiculous, reactionary prick towards it. But it’s given me something so many other games have been incapable of: a genuine sense of achievement. Promotion, winning cups, screwing Liverpool out of their best players – it has it all.

Anyway, back to the glorified spreadsheet it is.

1 Comment

Filed under Prattle

Deeds (good ones) part II: DEEDS IN SPACE

Long time listeners may remember a post I made a while back about helping people. It’s here, if you don’t remember. Or even if you do remember, and wanted to remind yourself of how simply heroic I am. Well today we have an update; an addition to the list which will surely solidify my reputation as one of the Greatest Living Humans.

Walking back from a press event with my colleague Ash, a man was stood to the side in the street, turning in circles. I think I remember him faintly saying “help me” or something to that effect, which grabbed my attention (aside from the fact that he was spinning in circles*). I asked if he was okay, to which he responded by collapsing and having a fit. It’s a reaction I’ve had before, but normally it’s after I’ve told a satirical joke and not just when I politely ask a question of someone – hence (and this is probably down to my Dad being a copper and me inheriting his instincts) I knew something was up.

I then spent the next ten minutes or so trying to cushion the man’s head as he slammed it on the pavement, giving him something to grab onto in the shape of my hand (and, at one point, my entire leg. Admittedly I wasn’t so up for that part) and generally trying to be reassuring. Those of you who know me may well know that I’m not very good at sincerity, so the point where he started grinding his teeth was met with a cry of “ahhhh, don’t do that!” by me. Ah, the ever-calming influence. I asked two local rubberneckers to ring an ambulance then kind of stood around like a lemon while this man clawed at nothing, tried to destroy his skull and (sometimes) apologised for having a fit.

It was around this point that a fat man waddled up and immediately proclaimed to us – I shit thee not – “I’m a first-aider at work, I know what to do”. He then went on to tell us we should in fact not stop the man from cracking his skull on the pavement and instead allow him to continue doing that. It’s a good job he turned up, otherwise I would have continued to not allow the fitting chap to fracture his skull like the sick bastard I clearly am.

(Seriously though – I understand that you shouldn’t restrain a fitting person as it can cause more damage, but for fuck’s sake this bloke was smashing his head on the concrete. Well, I should say ‘trying to’, as I stopped it. Call me a renegade if you will, I just don’t play by these first-aider rules.)

Anyway, the paramedics called by the folks in the shop nearby arrived and took over. Fortunately the first-aider was still there to instruct them on how they should go about their jobs, otherwise we’d have all been in a dilly of a pickle! I gathered together my things and we were on our way back to Bournemouth.

This whole ‘giving a shit about other people’ thing is a horrible affliction, and I can only apologise to the city of London for breaking their cardinal rule of ‘Never Help Anyone’.

*Come to think of it, maybe he was just dizzy. Really dizzy.

(As a second bracketed-off section, I would like to offer my utmost disgust to the monumental cunts out there who ignored this man as he was clearly in distress and to those who just kept on walking by as I was trying to help. You are terrible, terrible human beings. How anyone – anyone – can simply stand by as others suffer is absolutely beyond me and just thinking about it now has genuinely upset me. So great, thanks world. You win again. Fuck you.)


Filed under Prattle