Originally written on Sat 01 March 2014
1.03am local time
19°C (66°F), humid

IT’S BEEN a bad, bad hair day — and I didn’t know how to handle it. Bad Hair Days are not a usual fixture in my life. That’s okay because that’s what you all (ahem, all of you) want to read about anyway.

Flared nostrils

nostrils healthcentral-com

(via HealthCentral)

Dad said my problem was I couldn’t take a joke about money.

Not true. Price is what I can’t take a joke about. There IS a difference between money and price.

Money is about miserliness, and I’m no tightwad. Price is an objective unit of measure of your level of contractual obligations with respect to those who deserve no effing respect by any other measure. I know, Dad, because you were sometimes such a renegade used-car salesman flogging rusted-up cars in a rain-sodden area, and I learnt something from you.

But it does get up my nostrils (plus some other more precious orifices) when a person dicks with me about prices.

I don’t even mind unreasonable prices, since those could be made reasonable through negotiation (preferred, and cheaper to do) or a Southern Death Threat (which incidentally is also the name of a cool American rock band).

Most people get the impression that ink is the main bag for printers like me, mainly because of that phrase “Never argue with anyone who buys ink by the barrel.” Not true. Our main bag is in fact paper.

For those who’ve never seen paper (because of self-imposed illiteracy or the Internet, both of which comes to the same thing), this is the whitish stuff, not so dark, in thin sheets that we embarrass our parents and our respective nations on with a pen (another fictitious implement of literacy).

Consider the current facts:—

Paper prices

€665.04 (US$921.28) per metric tonne (2,204½ lbs) of 100gsm coated WF (woodfree) paper reels

€830.31 (US$1,150.23) per metric tonne of A4-size B-copy 80gsm sheets

Prices as of 25 Feb at the FOEX (Finnish Options Exchange). MOQ (minimum order quantity) is 20 tonnes (British/European practice) or 100 short tons (American practice). That’s 20 × 665.04 = €13,300.80 per minimum order to the Europenis or 100 × 665.04 = US$66,504 to the Americ*nts.

Ink prices

Ink prices have considerable leeway, depending on how well or badly you hang with your supplier, but generally:—

Standard offset printing ink (any colour) is US$24.47 per kilogramme (2 lbs 3 oz)

MOQ is conventionally 600 to 1,000 kg (one metric tonne) and usually allows mix and match of colours (cyan, yellow, magenta and black). Bad attitude incurs higher prices and additional (mis)handling surcharges.

If it were you at those prices, d’you think you could take a goddamn joke?

Because phoque yeu, that’s why!

Did you know…?

Paper pulp problems could ass-wipe the whole paper industry overnight, and therefore the whole printing industry. Know that?

shredded paper documents via www.photos-public-domain.com

(Public domain photo, courtesy of www.photos-public-domain.com)

The paper industry is one of the most stratified markets in the world, meaning that each paper subsector is compartmentalised with relatively no overlap with other subsectors. So newsprint manufacturers make only newsprint, paperboards make paperboard, and so on.

For comparison, plasticware manufacturers can make anything. The two deciding factors are what kind of extrusion mould they’re supplied with by (or prefabricates for) the client and the quantity of product ordered.

The only primary component that cuts across the whole paper industry is pulp, the major ingredient of all paper products.

The USA remains the world’s top paper pulp producer. But ’Murica F*ck Yeah is likely to sink into some kind of recession this year (2014). Weakening corporate bond prices will be the first sign of that storm. Weak bond prices affect all kinds of paper-product producers more than most other goods manufacturers — no idea why.

Life last year (2013) for the global paper-products industry hasn’t been too rough a ride, even in the face of paper-packaging demand failures (because of bad weather depressing consumer demand) AND in the face of massive bookstore failures, newspaper failures and print publishing missteps (blamed on challenges from electronic media, an excuse laughable and absurd).

I know the electronic-media excuse is absurd because Asian markets last year have seen double-digit growth in paper demand. That compensated for the sagging paper demand in North American and European markets because global paper supply (not the raw materials that go into producing paper) comes from North America and Europe.

Paperboard for corrugated packaging was the only thing that kept growing (and at double digits) in North America and Europe. If paper producers aren’t making enough moolah there, they’re doing something srsly wrong.

Then again, what the hell do I know? I’m in the printing business, not the paper one.

From now till 2017, many in the paper industry (including allied outsiders like myself) see no serious problems ahead. Demand and profits will continue to be slow but stable (because, whilst trees are becoming increasingly scarcer, there is still enough to go around). Moreover, new substitution technologies are appearing, such as the one that pulverises stone (rock) into thin, flexible, writeable sheets but not very eco-friendly yet.

All that, barring brainless politico-economic jockeying by jock-strapped politicos and econoclasts and/or the forecastable problems such as natural climate disasters usually labelled as ‘unforeseen.’

Please pray the paper industry won’t f*ck up, otherwise I’ll die and you won’t get to read The Naked Listener’s Weblog anymore. (Assuming you want to keep reading it…)

*

The world’s most traded commodity is ink. Know that?

offset printing inks

Comes in tins (cans), actually … bought by the kilogramme
(image from author’s collection)

We all know ink is more expensive than blood.

(Interestingly, blood is the world’s only non-man-makeable liquid.)

Just look at your useless, designed-in-America-assembled-in-China/Mexico desktop printer and the criminal cost of ink cartridges for it (Agent Orange-immune Vietnam-made).

Printer ink (as opposed to the professional kind called printer’s ink) was trading at its usual level of US$1,000 a barrel (119.24 litres or 31½ gallons) at the New York Futures Exchange as of 28 Feb.

Alright, printer ink isn’t exactly printer’s ink, but you get the general idea. Your yee-yee ass ink cartridge demand in turn bumps up professional ink prices. China is ramping up demand for both types of ink, by the way.

Please … don’t argue with someone who buys ink by the kilogramme. Because phoque yeu, that’s why!

Stop making printouts unless absolutely necessary.

Recycle your goddamn ink cartridges.

Learn PDF and take screenshots.

Do everything on your $2,000 Facebook and pr0n machine called a computer, preferably with one hand on the mouse and the other on a body part (yours or your pet’s).

While you’re tossing yourself off with (and on) that $2,000 pr0n machine, pray that the ink industry won’t f*ck up, otherwise I’ll die and … etc.

istockphoto_10556767-british-pound-money-tree

(via istockphoto.com)

_____

ABOUT | CONTACT | FACEBOOK | TWITTER | SISTER BLOG | POLICY & LEGAL

© The Naked Listener’s Weblog, 2014. (B14069)

How comfy is your family screwing you?

Monday 19 August 2013, 5.28am HKT


TOMORROW (19 Aug 2013) is the fifth anniversary of The Naked Listener’s Weblog on WordPress. Not more than half an hour ago, Life handed me something that most people in their right mind wouldn’t think of as a gift.

This broadcast is based on actual events.

Yes, folks, it’s a TL;DR rant. Skip it if you want. I preferred it if you didn’t though.

banana lick

(via Blessing Eremionkhale)

You could just as well call this post The Naked Listener’s Top 10 Lessons Learned From Family Members — because it’s that ‘deep.’

(Adult language follows — one-in-a-million occurrence from me.)

Read the rest of this entry »

The anger and resentment, delayed for now

Sunday 11 March 2012, 1.01am HKT


(Updated 11 March 2012 to fix typos and errant phraseology)

9.17pm local time / 14°C (57°F) windy and overcast

AND RATTA has decided to delay her resignation until Monday or Tuesday next week, for the sake of earning two more days’ wages.

She was to have called it quits this morning.

There’ll be two more new hired hands coming in next week, so Ratta also wanted to make sure the new guns get settled in.

Now that’s what I can be responsible-minded.

That’s why Ratta — and not them lot — have been put in charge of high-end luxury sportscars worth millions of dollars at her previous workplace.

Advisory: This will hopefully be the last of my totally angry, totally emotional, totally out-of-order, totally vicious and totally brain-baffling post — quite frankly, even I have had enough of this angry crap.

* * *

I’m not emotional
— and don’t you say I am either

*smack*

I have a couple of highly emotional reactions about her workplace.

I too can be arrogant, establishmentarian, Tory (conservative), disciplinarian, prescriptivist — choose the words you like best (as Marc Antony said to Cleopatra) — especially to those peasants.

Pay attention! Class is in session!

___

You won’t even allow Ratta to answer calls on her own mobile phone.

Your workplace is an office. It isn’t a construction site or a railyard where answering phone calls could be dangerous.

Even some prisons have payphones and allow un-effing-restricted phone access by convicts.

Tell me exactly what kind of place you’re running, or you leave.

___

Your goddamn job is to teach young kids. F@#king learn your manners.

This is your principal job. You do this, or you leave.

___

Your website is a disgrace to the online community.

Your ‘professional’ organisation cannot even manage the simple task of putting in the right materials into the right webpage.

Your English-language blog page (based on your ‘en_’ URL) is f@#king entirely in Chinese, written by your ‘principal’ in poor bloody Chinese grammar and poor bloody Chinese diction.

By the way, when you’re head of an educational establishment for preteens, your proper title is headmistress, you fat, smelly runt.

This is your principal online task for your website. You do this properly, or you leave the online sphere (or be put out of it).

___

You are mistaken. You are not professionals because you are not a Professional.

A ‘Professional’ is a person who is trained and/or practising in the Professions.

Classically, there were only three: divinitymedicine and law — the so-called ‘Learned Professions.’

Today, architecture, engineering and (believe it or not) plumbing have been added into the Principal Professions.

A ‘Profession’ is defined as a vocation founded upon specialised educational training, the purpose of which is to supply objective counsel and service to others, for a direct and definite compensation, wholly apart from expectation of other business gain.*

* Paragraph 123 of “Architect Services” (Chapter 7) of a United Kingdom Competition Commission report dated 8 November 1977, quoting a New Statesman article dated 21 April 1917 by Sidney Webb and Beatrice Webb. This definition is applicable worldwide to a greater or lesser extent.

The main milestones** that mark an occupation being identified as a profession are:—

  1. It became a full-time occupation
  2. The first training school was established
  3. The first university school was established
  4. The first local association was established
  5. The first national association was established
  6. The codes of professional ethics were introduced
  7. State or national licensing laws were established

** Perks, R.W. (1993). Accounting and Society. London: Chapman & Hall, ISBN 0412473305. Page 2.

Even the thoroughly brain-damaged Wikipedia does NOT even include educationistas in the lineup of Professionals:—

  • Accountants
  • Actuaries (i.e. insurance accountants)
  • Advocates (i.e. barristers a.k.a. trial lawyers)
  • Architects
  • Archivists (does not include librarians)
  • Chefs (does not fulfil criteria 5–7, thus does not qualify as a Profession as described above)
  • Dentists
  • Diplomats (career diplomats only)
  • Engineers (includes electricians)
  • Financial analysts (who are now too big to bail out)
  • Journalists (even yellow hacks)
  • Lawyers (i.e. solicitors a.k.a. non-trial lawyers)
  • Optometrists
  • Nurses
  • Pharmacists (but not pharmacologists)
  • Philosophers (does not fulfil criteria 5–7, thus does not qualify as a Profession as described above)
  • Physicians (i.e. non-surgical doctors)
  • Pilots
  • Plumbers
  • Professors (only full sitting professors on tenure)
  • Psychologists
  • Scientists (does not fulfil criteria 5–7, thus does not qualify as a Profession as described above)
  • Social workers
  • Surgeons (i.e. butchering doctors)
  • Veterinarians

I am a Professional by training and qualification and general recognition.

Your work is not professional because you are not a Professional. This is your actual social and work status. You accept it, or you leave.

As you are not a Professional, I have no interest whatsoever in entertaining your unsubstantiated un-Professional opinions, which are worthless for my Professional purposes.

(Notwithstanding the foregoing, some of my esteemed readers are professional (and Professional) teachers and educationists, and I should hope they too object to your brand of professionalism in education.)

___

You refused to even speak to your new hired hands, even for something as simple and innocuous as casual chitchat.

Ratta sits around in the office with absoeffinglutely none of the usual office conversation happening.

If you are a jobhunter, this should raise all your red flags about a problematic workplace.

If you are an employer with a workplace like that, you are part of the problem of running a problematic workplace and not the solution.

Your principal job is to run a comfortable, on-going business for profits. I too run a business, comfortable enough, as profitable as it could humanly be. You are to provide a proper workplace with no undue stress for your employees, or you leave.

___

Your co-workers won’t even talk to each other while dining together at lunchtime.

Red flag. Clearly these people have deep-seated psychological problems.

Untalkativeness or refusal to have social interaction is a strong indicator of high sexual frustration and psychologically traumatised personalities. (I know: my first degree was in psychology and statistics.)

Basically, you need to see a doctor at the first opportunity because I srsly believe the children under your care are under threat by your general pattern of behaviour.

Frankly, I would prefer to put you down like a sick dog with a Smith & Wesson .44 Magnum myself, but I understand from my legal training that would be slightly illegal in any jurisdiction.

Your lunchtime or whatever-the-hell break is when you’re supposed to be yourself. You do that, or your leave.

___

You deliberately and purposefully stretch things out in your teaching to the children so as to gain maximum possible revenue.

Your ‘company’ provides English-language tuition to very young children as a crammer (AmE: tuition school). But you also prolong the tuition on purpose in order to milk their over-anxious parents sold on the insane idea that kids could learn to speak English ‘natively’ (they mean ‘to speak like a native’) whilst growing up in a non-English-speaking territory like Hong Kong.

Your principal operating doctrine is that you’re a crammer. A crammer is to provide non-permanent remedial directed teaching to meet a specified need (e.g. examinations). You do that, or you leave.

___

Your three or four expat education or programme or whatever-the-hell directors have been living in my town only after the 1997 handover.

Unless you’ve been here before or are a belonger by birth or connection, you know jack shite about the Chinese and their children.

Ye olde Hong Kong flag

Were YOU here when THIS was here?
Then tell me what you know about Hong Kong, please.

In fact, you know bollocks about the Chinese
unless you were here when THIS was here.

 * * *

In fact, I’ve a mind just to sue those peasants just for fun and to see if my lawyerings skills are still up to scratch. Harr-harr.

Oh, yeah, for our non-English-speaking cousins, all this is what it means by the English phrase ‘having it in for’ somebody.

© The Naked Listener’s Weblog, 2012. Updated 11 March 2012.

Images: Mobile phone via Schoolnet.lk | Facepalm via c4c | Faucet by the author | Arrogant face via Terra Ferma Media | Girlie chitchat via Glossy Icon | Uncle Sam Shut Up via Psychology Today | Old Hong Kong Flag (public domain) via Wikipedia.

What’s it been? Venting (4/5)

Tuesday 6 March 2012, 12.15pm HKT


FROM PART 3

This is another tl;dr instalment. Woe betide you if you forego reading it, for it contains a number of broadsides that may actually affect YOUR blogging activities.

* * *

VENTING

This is the right time to speak up.

Normally I don’t like to hit back, not especially at blogs anyway, since, as a renegade blogger myself, I know full well how brain-damaged the whole exercise can be.

But man has his limits, as Detective ‘Dirty Harry’ Calahan once put it.

____________________

A little about my personality

You need to know something about me first so you know overall why I’m venting here:—

Be surprised to learn that I’m actually a Type A personality.

You’d never thought so just by the way I mostly carry on, but many people actually think I’m a milquetoast (a timid, unassertive person for those unused to americanisms) because of the way I let things pass 99% of the time.

That is, until they get up my nose long enough. Then they find to their terror that I have a high-velocity explosive temper with a physical speed and agility to match.

  • That sociologist on Job No. B08045 received my ‘hairdryer treatment’ at 50% capacity and, boy, was scared fartless.
  • That pushy sonofabitch salesperson who tried to sell me barely existent 100gsm-weight coated woodfree paper for US$1,500 a reel (double the market spot price) got a faceful of my 75% temper and almost felt he was being garrotted with No. 3 Piano Wire.

But 99% of the time, I just let it be. Pushing back isn’t automatic even for Type A personalities, you know. Type A’s aren’t psychopaths. Many Type A’s are really patient, easygoing people — so that Type A/Type B theory can go straight into the dustbin.

My life is one long emergency and I don’t have the time or energy to go ballistic at the slightest provocation. I leave that to the great masses of uncontrollable animals elsewhere.

‘They are what they are’

Intellectual discussions don’t normally scare me — not even those well outside my education or training. Trust me, I’m no intellectual. I’m an educated man but I can’t speak intelligently about the habits of others engaged in intellectual discourse. But then again, if you’re like me,** just about nothing should scare you.

** A chopper biker, legally trained, mum telling you to wear long hair after she died, 37 months on crutches, two months in a neck brace, and 114 years of printing legal documents for government-approved financial scams IPOs.

Personally, I’m not terribly fond of intellectuals or academics, especially the more egregious types. They are what they are, as the Italian phrase puts it rather well. I take their facelessness at face value, enjoy their foggy and oracular discussions for what they’re worth, have a larff, and move on.

Not to bottle things up

People who know me even for five minutes will know I’m not the type who holds a grudge against anyone — for sure not over the Internet — mainly because I operate on two principles:

  1. outlive them so I take pleasure in seeing them squeal and die before I do
  2. die early myself so I don’t have to breathe the same air as they do

However, I tend not to bottle things up. Yet I’m not exactly disposed to implement advice like ‘Don’t hold back’ either.

Truth is, I’m 88% easier-going than 95% of Type A personalities, 77% of lawyers, or 51% of bikers (of the motorcycle variety).

____________________

A little about 1.67%

Like I mentioned in Part 3 already, I’ve been following some 300 blogs and mailing lists of all types (via email, naturally) for (much, much) more than a year — and only 1.67% of them manages to upset me. But it’s out-and-out 99% upset.

They’re only blogs, right?! What the hell?!?

You’d be surprised just how talented some bloggers are at disruptive behaviour. You’ve got to hand it to them to actually get others to lose their rag over the Internet.

Out of my 300+ follows:

  • around 50 on language, grammar and/or linguistics
  • maybe 25 on various countries or other languages
  • maybe 25 on China
  • a dozen or so on Hong Kong
  • the rest are on cool stuff that pleases me (food, drink, bikes, chicks, cats, graphic arts, travel, music, gigs, news, porn, etc).

Certain issues need to be addressed regarding 1.67% of those blogs.

Tense humour and ‘the pits’

My biggest source of dismay and consternation (in a word, distemper, in the English literary sense, not the biomedical one) have been:

  • linguistics sites or blogs
  • China-watching or related sites or blogs

At the meeting point between those two, the worst has been

  • China-related linguistics blogs or sites from inside China written by foreigners who think they are ‘Chinese’

While I admire their confidence and knowledgeability in their own spheres, I do not admire their tense humour and the inanity of their commentary.

(I can handle racism, I can handle lack of humour, but I just can’t handle tense humour.)

It IS truly amazing that the Great Firewall of China hasn’t managed to stop those blogs from invading out onto us. Not one bit, given that that firewall has the ability to practically block sunlight.

‘They are the pits’ is my John McEnroe’esque assessment.

____________________

A little about linguanophiles

If you care to pay any attention at all, linguistics, translation studies and pedagogy (education) are highly rigid and rigidised fields.

Of the lot, linguistics is the most rigid and rigidised.

The most hotly contested (and heated) debates in academia today are in linguistics, which fact should help you infer the type of people who populate that field.

Read the sidebar for the key reasons for intellectual rigidity and rigidisation.

____________________

A little about comportment

The most galling thing on many of those lingo blogs is the way the bloggers and their regular dogpile of commenters actually go to extremes and deliberately exclude newcomers or those who simply hold different (though often non-dissenting) viewpoints.

I’m reminded of someone’s insight that, if The Establishment feel so fearful and threatened by a 76-year-old retired gynaecologist like Ron Paul (the American politician), there must be something seriously wrong about your turf.

Offensive antics

One of their more offensive antics is the blogger and his (usually it’s a ‘his’) favourite commenters collude behind the scenes, so to speak, to plot a comment dialogue done in such a way that’s deliberately littered with arcane technicalities that newcomers or uitlanders cannot possibly join in.

If you’ve ever been to boarding school and have constantly been abused there (not sexually, I’m embarrassed to say) or have been handed purposely designed ‘aggro’ as I have been, it becomes extremely easy how to figure out who’s colluding with who. Over time, it becomes second nature and you could do it ‘by remote,’ so to speak.

‘Uncooperative’

This pattern of bad behaviour is not one-off. It’s frequently seen in just about every academically related blog and Facebook thread that I’ve ever visited or got sucked into. The same takes place with some regularity on sites and Facebook groups that discuss sociology, translation studies and pedagogy (education).

Indeed, I myself have been solicited by some lingo bloggers or Facebookers to do just that against some unsuspecting victim. “Give ’em a break,” I say to these characters, “We’re still young enough to do that.” And then they brand me ‘uncooperative.’

Shaken to the core

I’ve been following a variety of linguistics, language, translation, sociology and pedagogy sites for well nigh on 10 years on a regular basis — in addition to having handled their authors for print publications for roughly the same amount of time. The same repertoire of antics are repeated time and time again. I’ve learnt to time it when antics start kicking in.

It’s disgusting. It’s offensive. It’s highly prejudiced. And these people aren’t even aware that they’re doing this themselves.

I lose my rag, and I really do have it in me to tell them to f@#k off, go to hell, and don’t come back.

Any inherent faith inside you in the goodness of people easily becomes shaken to the core because of seeing or knowing that.

____________________

A little about grace, if not face

The English aristocracy are famous for their grace — the ability to make a person feel really welcomed.

Clearly, the people who run blogs about linguistics, language, sociology, pedagogy and translation studies did not know how to learn that.

Tsk, tsk, tsk. Such swell intellectualism, and yet ignorant of these simple rules:—

The Golden Rule
Treat others as you yourself like to be treated.

The Silver Rule
Don’t treat others in ways that you wouldn’t like to be treated.

Not unless you’re a sado-masochist, in which case you WOULD enjoy begging to receive pain whilst also enjoying being refused it.

Try mine:—

The Naked Listener’s Malleable Copper Alloy Rule
Go easy on those who think, speak, eat and shat differently than you do because they don’t necessarily have your loaf, gob, eating irons or your porcelain shatware.

____________________

A little about face-off

Sometimes there’s just no way out.

The Naked Listener offers some timely advice:—

The Wax-On/Wax-Off Maxim
“That is the way I do things. If you don’t like it, then find me a driver who WILL comply with the way I do things.”

The English Displeasure and Reprisal-in-Kind Rule
“If my presence here is not up to your standards or expectations, I would appreciate it if you be so kind as to step away from your cheese and crackers for a minute and tell me directly what your requirements or particular preferences are for my presence to be acceptable.”

And remember this:

“If you tolerate this, your children will be next.” (English proverb)

____________________

Your question now must be, why continue with them?

That question is perhaps easier to answer if you care for broadly aimed broadsides in the next part.

____________________

UP NEXT IN PART 5: BROADSIDES

© The Naked Listener’s Weblog, 2012.

Images: Keep Calm/Screw Calm via Sarah C. | “I have nothing to say” via Cascade Web Development | Good Habits/Bad Habits Signpost via Marketing Leadership Council | “Once we hit capacity…” via Eddie Codel/Flickr.

I plead forgiveness, only if you’ll do the same

Wednesday 8 February 2012, 7.14pm HKT


SOMETIMES I GET WEIRD EMAIL commenting on my posts that, frankly, most normal people would just comment in the posts themselves.

Here’s one I got earlier today (with typos intact):

“You will need to plead for foregivness from the masses of folks upon whom you have imposed hurt, damage, degradation, and dismissal of their hopes.”

This was for the article ‘The Naked Listener’s top 10 lifehacks for the first time jobhunter or employee (Part 1).’

The message headers indicate it originated from here in Hong Kong, but the commenter chose to disguise himself or herself under the pretend name of Jennifer Backer.

I don’t mind the complaint or rant or whatchamacallit. But why not just comment on the bloody post itself?!?

© The Naked Listener’s Weblog, 2012.

How to bottle things up inside (part 2)

Sunday 21 August 2011, 1.39pm HKT


YESTERDAY had been one almighty bad-hair day for me. I wear a ponytail, so you can imagine. Don’t argue — it really was bad.

* * *

Pushin’ n’ shovin’ n’ sweatin’ n’ yellin’
n’ payin’ through ya’nose

I get one life, and one life is all I get in this world. It’s not the life I paid for, but it’s a little late now to do anything about it, short of a drastic Subscription Termination to Life. I’m crazy, but not that crazy.

Ever tried walking through a sea of people in a 33-degree heatwave? With car exhaust thick as overnight leftover vomit hitting you in the face? And noises assaulting your ears 360°? You’d want to beat the living daylights out of anyone who daringly suggests there MIGHT be no global warming. You’d seriously — very seriously — be tempted to stick that ice lolly straight into someone’s eye socket and watch the victim die very slowly and painfully so that victim may understand that not wearing your favourite colour today was a sin.

Hannibal Lector or Michael Meyers or Jason Vorhees doesn’t even come close to the mild psychopathic tendencies I was having yesterday.

And if you had to pay $56 (US$7.18) for 200 grammes (7 ounces) of shite-rate German brawn (that’s jellied meats), or $14 (US$1.79) for a 750cc bottle of warm fizzy mineral water, you can forgive me for wanting to bring out my pair of blackwood nunchakus and beat the guts out of nicely behaved little children while their analogously badly behaved parents look on (if they’re paying any goddam attention in the first place). In broad daylight. Whilst wearing a fluorescent yellow sports jersey and mottled, off-white, summerweight cowboy boots, lovingly made in Texas.

* * *

Taking it out on innocent parties

There being no other business on the agenda, I move to proceed to the rant and unjustified fingerpointing.

* * *

Lee: he's tidy, he was

Any Texans out there reading this? Yes, yes, I know, your average temperature statewide is 92°F today and you’ve got muggy humidity and all that. But y’all don’t have as many pee’pl as we do — and if you had that many, your state is ginormous so they ain’t packed like sardines beans in burritos like we do here. So you fine folks can shut yer gob ovah thar. My Neville Chamberlainesque reply: you’ve never had it so good.

Get out the coldbeer (that’s correct Texan English) and bring out your concealeds (that’s short for ‘concealed weapons’ for you gormless, gun-controlled countries) and pick off a couple of closet vegans or closet teetotallers.

I wear genuine Texas- and Tennessee-made cowboy boots since the age of 12, but mostly I have the greatest respect for your General Robert E. Lee (plus getting hit with Robert E. Lee jokes for most of my life), so ahm ent-tye-tuhl’d to single out Texans for MY bad behaviour today. Shoot me. Bring out your concealed — see if I caremister.

* * *

United Kingdom! You can shut your gob over there too! Your riots were bad — we saw them on TV — we feel for you — but it’s your own damn fault. Quit whining and whinging. We’re still furious with you for ditching us back in 1997.

Wimpy in Huddersfield, one of few still remaining in the UK

You let in fundamentally brain-damaged religionfags into your country instead of taking in fundamentally greedy Hongkongers who can help you corner the whole EU economy. You forgot how to build empires. Your loss. Nuff said.

You’ve still got your UB40’s (unemployment relief) and your NHS (free healthcare) and your basically unarmed (but unbrained) constabularies (police).

But your entire education system runs on the criminally overpriced tuition fees that you forcibly extract from international students whilst not even paying the common courtesy of furnishing them (or your own selves) with mind-numbing Latin and classical Greek lessons or your perverse (and perverted) English History lessons about how Richard III was more evil than Lord Darth Vader.

Your maths still suck. Worse, your French suck despite being only 30 miles away from France itself and your kings and queens have more French blood in them than most Frenchmen have.

You, too, United Kaaalingdom, have never had it so good, but you totalled your country for no good reason:

  • allowed Wimpy (the burger joint with ‘table service’) to practically go out of business by the 1980s
  • ‘corporatised’ all your pirate radio stations
  • denatured or otherwise castrated all your Teddy Boys and flower-power hippies
  • hair-transplanted your skinheads
  • blinged-up your Mods
  • besuited your punks
  • disco-ised your New Wavers
  • desensitised your emos and goths
  • gentrified your Cockney and East End Londoners by turning their turf into Canary Wharf and other assorted banker fiefdoms
  • educated your nice English country girls and scene girls to become Sex and the City bitch-sluts instead of the endearingly traditional English ‘scrubba’ whore-sluts much loved by all anglophiles
  • make everybody want to be bleeding New Yorkers
  • have no Britrock anymore — they’re all bleeding indies who all sing off-key
  • defringed (or mainstreamised) your NF into the BNP
  • americanised your centuries-old infantry regiments
  • allowed straight people into the Royal Navy
  • trained the RAF in American style so it now only knows how to bomb friendlies
  • allowed non-hooligans into the Royal Marines and the Parachute Regiment, so bovver boys now run amok in the streets, setting fire to old ladies and create riots in several cities
  • let Swann & Edgar (the department store in Piccadilly Circus) liquidate in 1975 and turn into HMV (or something) and that’s seriously unforgivable
  • let Bourne & Hollingsworth in Oxford Street turn into a cheapo shopping mall
  • let Dickins & Jones in Regent Street to fail into oblivion
  • turned Café Royale into a bling-bling contest venue
  • broke up your wonderfully late and obtuse British Rail into dozens of wonderfully late and obtuse independent rail services so no one knows where to get tickets anymore
  • done ‘f.a.’ for SheffieldNewcastle-upon-Tyne and Tyne and Wear
  • incorporated the former county of Westmorland into Cumbria without asking our say-so
  • your feudal-sounding quarter sessions and assizes are no more, but your Crown Court couldn’t even hold a dim light to the TV series of the same name
  • shambolised your education system by ditching GCE O- and A-levels and replacing them with crap GCSEs, NVQs or whatever the shite you have there now
  • you’ve dissed your polytechnics by turning them into universities
  • you still haven’t cleaned your Tube!
  • your Oystercard is hopelessly out of date before it even came out
  • you’ve practically sacked all your bus conductors of Indian and Pakistani extraction so we can’t make fun of them anymore, and bus conductors nowadays don’t know how to answer back viciously (like the Indian/Pakistani conductors could) without causing a riot in the process
  • you binned all our favourite London buses (the ones with the open back ends) and replaced them with petrol-pissing new models with mediaeval-looking automatic doors that are shite and dangerous for little old ladies and rowdy drunken hooligans
  • screwed up the House of Lords so badly that your aristocrats all want to be CIA operatives based in New York City or L.A.
  • you’ve binned us in 1997 whilst leaving 3½ million of us still holding British-of-a-kind passports

I’m from a little place called Great Britain,
But I don’t know if I love or hate Britain,
These words upon my page written
Are things that make and break Britain.

(Chorus, “Great Britain,” by Dan Le Sac vs. Scroobius Pip)

Ye Olde Hong Kong Flag

I know so — I grew up in your flaming country too. I’m more English than your Englishmen and more Scottish than your Scotsmen.

I’ve no beef with Irishmen (because green is one of my favourite ink colours).

I’m head over heels with the Welsh mainly because they’ve given me wonderful phrases like “that’s tidy, that” and “I accidentally the whole bottle” with its oh-so-subtle missing verb that’s literally decades before those phrases became popular on the Internet. So bloody there.

Quit mucking around and fix your bleeding country for five minutes at least. If you can’t do that, dig Chamberlain, Churchill, Teddy Heath and Harold Wilson out of their graves — they can’t do any worse than this Cameron-Clegg personage. You’ve had John Major, Tony Blair and Gordon Brown having done more damage back-to-back than the Luftwaffe had ever hoped to do, and you’ve got brain-damaged politicos ‘doing in’ the remaining bits. Srsly, this is serious business.

And your BBC World Service makes Disneyland look like a serious source of news.

Oh, the riots? Sayonara to the Olympics, baby!

* * *

You’d better run for cover too

Australia: You can thank your lucky stars I’m letting you off, solely and exclusively on the strength of your country having people like D.G. Mattichak Jr, who is one of my favourite bloggers/commenters.

Communist/socialist countries: Take notes from Bear Grylls. Learn to drink your own orificial fluids. The Free World is in a deep fix right now, they’re already drinking their own, thank you very much, so they can’t spare any for you yourselves for a few more years. Cope on your own, please.

Middle East: Stop squabbling, children! You’re running out of food and water. Put your energy instead into finding a food-and-water solution. Or go back to eating dust. Your choice. Choose wisely. Derp.

Rest of the world: GO BIG, OR GO HOME! Have more bearing before you come back. Stop sucking up to these bankers. It’s your money! If they want YOUR money, YOU call the shots! What are you, chopped liver???

© The Naked Listener’s Weblog, 2011.

Images: General Robert E. Lee via The Latin Library ♦ Wimpy Restaurant in Huddersfield via Wikipedia ♦ Flag of Hong Kong 1959 via Wikipedia.

Amended 22 Aug 2011 (fixes to typos, etc).
Updated 15 Oct 2011 (link fixes). 

Diary of a Psychokiller

take a trip with me to the darkside

Lipsync Lawyer

Stop bitching and know your law differently

Daring Fireball

Hearing ordinary lives talk

Girl in Florence

A Tuscan Texan immersed in Florentine life: passionate about food & wine | random moments | and travel

One Drawing Daily

I've been drawing and painting and learning (almost) every day since the 9th September 2014

An English Man In SF

a diary of life as an immigrant

MB Forde

Ghosts, Legends, Folklore and Writing

Motorcycling in Hong Kong

On two wheels in Asia's World City

Tinkerbelle

Making her way back to Neverland one day at a time...

The Naked Listener's Weblog

Hearing ordinary lives talk

Basti in China

Random stuff from Hong Kong and China

Making Maps: DIY Cartography

Resources and Ideas for Making Maps

Pointless Diagrams

A new, meaningless diagram drawn daily, just 'cause.

This Blog Needs Words

The greatest WordPress.com site in all the land!

The London Column

Reports from the life of a city, from 1951 to now, compiled by David Secombe

Vintagerock's Weblog

Just another WordPress.com weblog

%d bloggers like this: