Monday 28 April 2008

The Friday Album Cover #8

This is the first opportunity I have had in 2 weeks to bash out a post or two.

I even found time to throw an obscure album cover together (even though its some ways from Friday). It's probably a bit obscure so I won't take it as a sleight on my artistic abilities if it remains unanswered. My only clues:

  • The album is eponymously titled.
  • Fatmammycat might consider moving there (if such a place existed).
It will be back to sporadic posting from here for a while, so enjoy.

Never, ever....

.. say "Sure a guard wouldn't ask me that" in response to question that a guard has just asked you.

They don't like it!

Furthermore, if you commit this rookie error, don't try to smooth things over by explaining the apparent humour in your reply. The irony is lost on them and, if anything, it only seems to irritate them further.

Something to talk about

As I was leaving Andrew Stanley's Mish-Mash gig in the International Bar last week, Marcus Sweeney restauranteur/perma-tanned socialite/cad about town/ex of "The Tragic Katie French"TM(who got a bit annoyed when she posed in her smalls in his restaurant) wooshed past me in a cloudy aura of cash and self-importance. Following hot on his heels was his current squeeze, The Clinic's, Leigh Arnold.

From the snippets of conversation I caught they seemed to be mid tiff. Apparently they had been to a pub to meet her friends. While Leigh was busy catching up with her chums (I suspect that, like the rest of us, Leigh has chums and not, as I had originally suggested "clums"), Marcus was getting the hump because he felt she was ignoring him. He "felt belittled" and about "that small" (you can get creams for that!). Then he stormed off leaving her behind. To be honest*, he seemed like the type of guy any woman would be lucky to have tucking her in at night.

Eventually Marcus came back, murmured a few placating words and they both left in his Range Rover - which only had one headlight working. (The cheap bastard!)

Now, which gutersnipe gossip columnist should I call first?

* If by honest you mean "to peddle untruths".

Don't worry baby!

Much of last night was spent lying awake wondering why on earth I had just had a dream about punching a rabbit.

I don't know who or how big the rabbit was. I don't recall how much of a threat it posed or, indeed, if it somehow deserved a punch.

Although I generally don't lend much credence to dream interpretation, a quick google search suggested such dreams are related to fertility or if, like Elmer Fudd, you are "hunting wabbit", a confrontation with your fears.

The CPF was tending more towards the fertility side of things, while I, convinced that punching a rabbit is close enough to hunting one, was inclined to cling desperately to the confrontation theory.

"Perhaps you're confronting your fear of fertility", offered the CPF.

Friday 11 April 2008

The Friday Album Cover #8

The Friday Album Cover is just going may be some time.*

In fact, all output from Ambassador Towers will, for the next 8 - 10 weeks, be sporadic at best. But on to the album cover...

There was a bit of a rush to meet the deadline this week. At one stage it looked like I would have to resort to The Beatle's White Album

or Metallica's eponymously titled black album

but that would have felt like cheating. (Note: That's not to say that these album cover's won't appear in future times of desperation - especially now that I've actually taken the time to whip them up).

Instead, I opted for this....

* By the way, if you haven't already caught Aidan Dooley in Tom Crean: Antarctic Explorer do yourself a favour and check it out - it is nothing short of fantastic. See here, here, and here.

Thursday 10 April 2008

I need a little time to think it over

Bugger. It's Thursday already and not a child in the house washed no idea what the Friday album cover will be.

Entries or suggestions welcome: email

Wednesday 9 April 2008

Up on the hill is where you'll find us...

A bit busy today - so just a quick one...

I am currently hoping

  • the Kennys lose their dispute with the Charltons.
  • costs are awarded against the Kennys.
  • the Charltons invite tenders from developers to build a high rise apartment block on Gorse Hill overlooking the Kennys' home.

If they could somehow also fit a Dr. Quirkeys in the development, that would be great.

Monday 7 April 2008

Hump De bump

Land of saints and scholars?

Land of roundabouts and speed bumps more like.

I have no real problems with roundabouts - except when we put traffic lights on them (that's just inviting people to laugh at us). Outside off peak hours you can kind of slalom through them with the grace and coolness the Milk Tray Man would have if he was an Olympic skier.

I despise speed bumps though. Suspension destroying, soul crushing monuments to insipid, uninspired political thinking. It seems they will lash a speed bump in anywhere - for any reason - at present. Maybe somebody has been doing a special on them for the last 20 years.

"Somebody drove down a road with their hands on the wheel in something other than the '10 to 2' position? Holy knee jerk reaction Batman! We need a speed bump"

"This road is congested each morning with barely moving rush hour traffic? And children might be walking to school as close as 10 miles away? Why didn't you say something? A speed bump will limit the danger?"

I've got an idea! Instead of annihilating the vehicles and spinal columns of the vast majority who can drive responsibly (and at reasonable speeds) by whacking speed bumps everywhere, why not try a different approach. How about actually catching the people who drive like lunatics? Or maybe introduce stiffer penalties as a deterrent? Or, if you're feeling a slightly more radical why not try something like, oh I don't know, policing the already existing legislation which more than adequately covers such situations?

Speed bumps - Pah!

I'm not the King of Comedy...

I go to see a lot of comedy gigs.

It is not uncommon for me to leave a gig awestruck wondering why I even bother trying to reach such elevated planes - especially when the Dara O'Briains, Tommy Tiernans, Rich Halls and Demetri Martins of this world make it seem so simple.

... and then? Then you read this piece that pours forth comedy gold like a mountain spring. A piece that is so effortlessly hilarious, so side splittingly surreal, so ingenious that the Perrier Award should be renamed (again!) in the author's honour. And when you read this genius you know for certain that all hope is lost. The summit has been reached. The flag of discovery has been planted and it bears the coat of arms of he who should be anointed saviour of modern comedy.

So, this August, expect to see the world's top comedians descend on Edinburgh and compete for the Eoghan Harris: King of Comedy award.

It is written tongue in cheek isn't it?

Bertie isn't really that stupendous? Is he?

[Edit: 3:16pm]
This bit..

So, while I had no tears when he rode away, I wept hard when he came back for Grainne. That's what I call a hero.

...conjures up a memorable and rather enduring image of Bertie riding his trusty steed through the Mahon tribunal courtroom (much to the horror of the assembled legal eagles), dressed in chaps and a stetson, bending down, slipping his arm around the Grainne Caruth's waist and, in one effortless movement, sweeping her on to the back of his horse and riding off into the sunset.

Out in the cold

Could somebody please explain the strange and mystical temperature range at which it is cold enough to merit wearing a scarf, yet sufficiently warm as to not require a coat or jumper of any description?

This has me baffled. I have always understood that additional layers of clothing were required as temperatures fall. Furthermore, I believed unspoken rules existed which govern the order in which layers were applied:

  • T-Shirt/Shirt
  • Jumper
  • Jacket
  • Scarf

But I keep seeing people wearing a t-shirt and a scarf - with no jumpers or jackets? Do these people have incredibly hairy chests that require no additional warmth? Maybe they are just simple minded fashion victims? Or was there a recent throat cancer epidemic which left hundreds of people breathing through holes in their throats - holes they hide with scarfs perhaps?

Answers on a postcard....

Thursday 3 April 2008

The Friday Album Cover #7

Once again, The Friday Album Cover comes a day early.

I'm away tomorrow and today I'm a little too tired* to bother my arse with any posts requiring an inordinate level of thought or concentration.

So here it is: possibly a bit of an obscure one this week and, in my defence, I didn't go into the very fine detail which appears on the original album cover as I had neither the time nor the patience. See how you get on anyway...

* Had a bit of a late one after the first of 2 gigs this week. Was anybody in the Martello Hotel in Bray last night?

Wednesday 2 April 2008

Now I'm 28, but I'm still in my teens...

So after a few topsy turvy weeks, the hall stairs and landing have been stripped, filled, sanded, painted and then painted again. A new front door and wooden floor have been ordered for the hall and will soon be on the way. As will a new carpet for the the stairs and landing.

The bathroom has been cleaned and painted to make it look somewhat respectable. We may need to put up bookshelves to house the eclectic collection of literature that has accumulated on the window sill - but that's a story for another day.

We have now moved onto the process of planning to build a shed at the bottom of the garden. We need somewhere to house the bike, lawnmower and garden furniture (along with all the other odds and ends that you accumulate when doing these little jobs) . The current wooden thing is nearing the end of its natural life and, especially with all the weather we've had recently, is beginning to rot. (Ronseal, there may have been a typo on some of your tins!)

I'm not sure what I am more worried about - how low the balance of my current account will be when all is said and done or the fact that I will own a shed.

I'm not yet 30 - what comes next if I build and own a shed:

  • slippers?
  • a pipe?
  • a volvo?
  • knowing when radiators need to be bled?
  • "it's awful hard to get good tunips this time of year"?
  • "that's not music - its just noise"?
  • "you know, back in my day..."?
  • choosing garments for their practicality over their appearance?
I'm not ready for that. Not yet. Not yet.

Leaving Today..

Unfortunately he's not actually leaving today, but Bertie will be stepping down as Taoiseach and leader of Fianna Fail on May 6th.

I'm amazed that a politician in this country has actually resigned over something (although clearly, as the man himself said, his decision was not influenced by how repeated revisions and excuses had left him tangled up in a web of apparently irreconcilable contradictions).

Given the amount of evidence that came to light I'm equally amazed it took so long for him to fall on his sword.

What a wonderful day! Of course, between listening to coverage on the radio and reading commentary on the blogsphere, today's productivity levels are severely at risk.

Now, if the loathsome squatter Pat Kenny were to lose his court case I'd be in heaven.

[Update: 11:32am]
Sarah's site has an excellent analysis of the Taoiseach's speech.

[Update: 15:13]
Spare a thought for Mario Rosenstock in all of this.

Tuesday 1 April 2008

Last night I had the strangest dream....

For reasons I can't go into, although I assure you our intentions were honourable, T-man and I needed to break into Tallaght hospital to apply some modification's to one of their computer systems. For certain reasons, this had to be done without the knowledge of any staff at the hospital.

Believing that Michael Collin's approach (i.e. if you don't look like you're hiding, nobody will look for you) was best, we went in under cover of broad daylight, shunning traditional sneaking attire such as black polo necks and..... well, sneakers.

Despite my family background and upbringing in a not-so-leafy Dublin suburb, it was T-man who proved most likely to prosper as a criminal mastermind. Light fingered, master of the con and full of charm - he succeeded in gaining access through points requiring a security swipe card using nothing more than... a large onion.

Unfortunately he may have been a touch over confident for, at one stage, having onion swiped his way through a door clearly marked "Staff Only" he encountered a pretty nurse who quickly called security.

With the mission compromised, I began plotting how to liberate my accomplice but woke up before a plan could be formulated.

Naturally enough, this was immediately followed by a prolonged "What the fuck?" period.

Any ideas?

They can see that he's just a fool

There was a report on today's edition of Morning Ireland detailing how, in 2007, the HSE spent €10 million transporting patients (via taxi, mini bus and private ambulance ) to and from hospital for kidney dialysis.

Of this, in excess of €600,000 was spent transporting patients from the midlands to Dublin.

The report then went on to say that Tullamore Midlands Regional Hospital has 5 dialysis stations which currently lie idle because they do not have sufficient staff.

How ridiculous I thought. The fools. Can't Harney and Drumm see the folly of this situation. Anybody with a rudimentary understanding of maths would know that employing 5 nurses to operate the machines would be a cheaper, more efficient and patient friendly approach. Why not make 5 middle managers whose roles are redundant... well, redundant. Pah!

Even Drumm and Dumber couldn't be that brain dead. Could they?

The the realisation dawned - April Fools Day.

Good one RTÉ -you nearly had me.

Oh dear!